Throwback Thursday: G is for “GUTS”

GUTS, or Nickelodeon GUTS was a game show that aired, unsurprisingly, on Nickelodeon from 1992-1995. It was essentially a teen version version of Ninja Warrior and was hosted by Mike O’Malley, whom most of you would probably recognize from Yes, Dear or Glee if you watched either of those shows.

Then and Now
If you didn’t, it was this guy.

It was also “refereed” by Moira Quirk who didn’t really referee anything as much as she announced the contestants’ running point totals in a British accent while wearing a black and white striped shirt.

But everything sounds better with a British accent, so I get it.
But everything sounds better with a British accent,
so I get it.

In the show, the three teen contestants competed in “extreme” physical challenges for points. However, I’m not sure how extreme they can actually be because there’s about a 10:1 ratio of spotters to contestants and each kid is wrapped up in enough padding to make even the most paranoid parent feel secure.

"Have fun, honey!"
“Have fun, honey!”

The final challenge was, of course, the Aggro Crag.

TA DA!!!!!!
TA DA!!!!!!

It was an indoor mountain with various obstacles like fog machines, falling foam rocks, and glitter cannons. If you think the glitter cannon doesn’t sound like much of an obstacle, then you’ve clearly never tried to clean up glitter before.

Don't believe me? Go ahead, dump some out on the carpet. I'll wait.
Don’t believe me?
Go ahead, dump some out on the carpet.
I’ll wait.

At the end of the competition, Moira read the teleprompter tallied the results and declared one teen the winner while the other two hung their heads in shame and tried to stammer out some bullshit about how it was just fun to compete.

It was harder for some to pretend than others.

As I discussed in my previous column about Legends of the Hidden Temple, some of these game shows for kids had some pretty awesome prizes like a Caribbean cruise for the whole family. So what did the winners of GUTS walk home with?

A piece of the Aggro Crag.

"Yeah, no, this is way better than a cruise."
“Yeah, no, this is way better than a vacation.”

They tried to make it sound cooler by calling it “a piece of our radical rock” but let’s call it what it is: a giant glow stick. And I don’t know if you can tell from this photo, but those trophies were huge. There’s no way it would have comfortably fit on a dresser with all your Beanie Babies.

"Welp, I guess it's off to the garage with you."
“I guess it’s off to the garage with you, radical rock.”

If you still want one of these trophies but the height of your athleticism is walking to the fridge, a past winner sold theirs on eBay because apparently GUTS  success doesn’t translate to adulthood. This particular trophy already sold, of course, but it’s only a matter of time before the rest of them pop up on Craigslist.

Just make sure you double check before you purchase.
Just make sure you double check before you purchase.

Happy Throwback Thursday!

Advertisements

Emily Regan is the author of several books, including "What's an Adult?: No One Knows Anything and We're All Going to Die." She is an avid fan of reality TV, an unironic Hanson fan, and currently resides in Arizona with her family.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.