Although this show is no longer airing, I would like to review it. It had a interesting concept but it also had many flaws. It was meant to entertain but it also caused a lot of debates. This show would put different warriors who never fought each other in real life up against each other. For example, they put the Navy seals up against the Israeli commandos.
1.) How they came up with outcomes
Basically the hosts of the show would bring in Experts on specific warriors. For example, if they put a Apache vs a Gladiator the experts for each warrior would bring a set of weapons and armor the Warriors used.
The experts representing the Apache bring in Tomahawks and knifes while the experts representing the gladiator bring in Cestus and a Trident & net. The tomahawk would be tested against the cestus by using all sorts of tests. Eventually they'll put the performance onto a computer that would calculate how many simulated kills each weapon got. The weapon with more kills gets the "edge". They would continue to test various weapons against each other from close range to long range.
Almost always the warrior with the most edges wins the fight. After they calculate all the points/kills with the weapons, they put them into a computer that runs many simulated fights between both warriors. Whoever wins most of the fights wins the last fight. They then show a dramatization of both warriors fighting with one coming out as the victor.
However, one of the flaws in the early seasons was that they only tested out the performance of the weapons, they completely neglected the individual skills of the type of warrior. I'll give specific examples below. It wasn't till the later seasons where they started to include other factors like the psychological state of the warrior and hand to hand combat skills.
Two of the biggest controversies of the show is that some of the "experts" were said to not have been actual experts and it became more obvious as the show went on that some of the match ups were possibly rigged due to bias.
By the way, the Apache beat the gladiator in case you are wondering.
Also, I couldn't find good quality videos of the showdowns all I could find are videos that look like they were recorded with camcorders. I didn't record the videos by the way.
2.) Samurai vs Viking
A very interesting match up were the Samurai ended up beating the Viking. Not surprising, it angered the Hema community while the Japanese martial arts community was pleased. However most people believe that this fight should have been a draw. I admit that I'm glad the Samurai beat the Viking but I also believe that the match up should have ended in a draw. They actually showed how the Katana couldn't penetrate chain mail armor so at least they did show that the Katana is just a sword and not some super sword.
The two flaws of this episode is that they completely forgot about the Hand to Hand Combat arts of both the Samurai and the Vikings. The Samurai practiced Jujutsu while the Vikings practiced Glima. The other flaw is that a lot of people found out that one of the Samurai experts is actually a radio broadcaster.
I couldn't find a good quality video but here is how the fight scene went.
3.) Spartan vs Ninja
One of the most unpopular match ups on the show. From the very start you should have known who was going to win. The Ninja is not a warrior, the ninja is a Assassin. The ninja is not trained to fight on a battlefield. So not surprising, the Spartan won.
However, it was obvious that there was some bias that favored the Spartan. Historically, the Ninja did occasionally wear armor. However, the show didn't include that armor while the Spartan was given a armored cuirass.
The fight scene was also funny, they literally depicted the Spartan as the Spartans were depicted in the movie 300 in which the Spartan was a overpowered fighter. The fight starts with a Ninja attempting to sneak up on the Spartan but the Spartan senses him because the ninja yells. The Ninja was depicted in a stereotypical manner and the ninja actually went one on one with the Spartan. The funny thing is that the ninja had the advantage on multiple occasions throughout the fight but kept running away from the Spartan. Eventually the ninja makes a mistake and gets killed by the Spartan. In real life, the Ninja would have used his blow gun to poison the Spartan from the tree at the beginning and of course the Ninja had many other weapons in their arsenal than the ones were shown on the show.
4.) Spartan vs Samurai
A very popular episode but it had it's controversies. The hosts were clearly favoring the Spartan, the odd part was that Samurai got most of the edges which meant that the Samurai should have won. However, when it came to the actual simulations. The Spartan ended up winning. Of course I was disappointed that the Samurai lost.
If you look at the history of both warriors. The Spartans fought better as a group, while the Samurai fought better when it was one on one. Sure the Spartan was good fighter when it came to one on one but the Samurai's fighting skills were specifically meant for one on one confrontations. So in this simulation, they made it one on one yet the Spartan won since they didn't take into consideration all of the factors. They did leave out the hand to hand combat skills of both warriors such as the Samurai's Jujutsu and the Spartan's Pankration. The fight scene was interesting and it appeared that the Samurai was going to win at one point when the Samurai used a hip throw to bring down the Spartan While the Spartan was down, he used his shield to cover up. Eventually the Spartan recovered and managed to win by using his sword.
Something tells me that the point of the fight was to show how strong the Spartan's shield was since they put so much emphasis on it. I think that's one of the reasons why they made the Spartan win because of his shield but also because the hosts were favoring the Spartan. They once again made the Spartan behave like the Spartans from 300.
Personally I think the Samurai should have won since it was one on one. If it was 5 Spartans vs 5 Samurai, the Spartans should have won. The Samurai had many other weapon in their arsenal besides the ones shown on the show including the Ōtsuchi which was a large war mallet that was strong enough to knock down doors and the Yari which was a large spear that would have given the Samurai the Range advantage. Here's how I think the fight should have gone.
5.) Alexander the Great vs Atilla the Hun
A great episode that had very little to no controversy. Atilla ended up winning. I agree with the result. Atilla was a very powerful leader that briefly took over most of Europe. The fight scene was very neat which ended when Atilla defeated Alexander. Since Attila slays Alexander in a graphic manner, I won't show the video here.
6.) Ming warrior vs French Musketeer
A very interesting match up, it was funny how the French Canadian tv show host was favoring the French Musketeers but you can't really blame him. I think the fight could have gone either way but I kind of agree with the result, the musketeers were more technologically advanced when it came to their firearms. However, the Ming had the advantage when it came to close range.
7.) Joan of Arc vs William the conqueror
In this episode they featured their first female warrior. The results were controversial because Joan of Arc won. It was suspected that they allowed Joan of Arc to win because she was the first female warrior on the show.
8.) Sun Tsu vs Vlad the Impaler
A very intense match up, however it wasn't really fair since Vlad the impaler had a hand cannon while Sun Tzu had no firearms. So obviously Vlad the Impaler won. I can't show the video here because it ends in a very graphic manner.
9.) Pirate vs Knight
This one caused debates, while the pirate had the technological advantage with his flintlock and blunderbuss, the knight's armor was able to deflect the projectiles of the pirate's firearms. So people still shake their heads at this episode but the fight scene was believable. The only way the pirate won was by knocking the knight off his feet so the knight couldn't get up in his heavy armor which allowed the pirate to finish him off with a flintlock to his exposed forehead.
10.) Genghis Khan vs Hannibal
I knew that Genghis Khan would win and I was right. Genghis Khan single handedly united various tribes into one of the most dominant empires in history known as the Mongol empire.
11.) Comanche vs Mongol
A interesting match up but with a odd result. The Comanche ended up winning which is kind of odd since the Mongols were known for having one of the most dominant empires in history.
12.) George Washington vs Napoleon Bonaparte
A weird match up but in this fight, George Washington won due to the weapons George used and because of the new X Factors. While it's believable, some people still criticize it for having a guerilla warrior fairly beat a trained soldier.
13.) Theodore Roosevelt vs Lawrence of Arabia
Theodore Roosevelt ended up winning and I'm not surprised, Theodore was known for being both physically and mentally tough not only that, he had experience in Judo wrestling and boxing which would give him a advantage in close range combat.
14.) Waffen SS vs Vietcong
I wasn't surprised the Waffen SS won, they were classed as a elite fighting force while the Vietcong were guerilla fighters. However, they gave the Waffen SS WWI weapons such as the MP18 and the Mauser C96. In reality those weapons were starting to get phased out by the MP40 and the Walther P38.
15.) Mafia vs Yakusa
Obviously neither of these are "warriors" but they featured them nonetheless. With all the movies and video games about the Mafia, it shouldn't be surprising that there was some bias towards the Mafia which is why the Mafia won. They showed how both gangs looked in 1940s. They depicted the Mafia in a stereotypical manner. In real life the weapons of both gangs would vary but they brought in the weapons both groups were known to use. The one controversial part was that the Mafia'a arsenal included a baseball bat but the Yakusa's arsenal didn't include a Katana which would have given the Yakusa a edge. I couldn't find a video for this fight.
16.) Green beret vs Spetznaz
Probably the most popular episode with a surprising result. You are probably thinking, there is no way they are going to allow the Spetznaz win but the Spetznaz won. Of course, this might have been to compensate for the CIA beating the KGB in a different episode. It was also one of the most controversial episodes on the show.
17.) US army rangers vs North Korean Special ops
Obviously the US army Rangers won due to the more advanced weaponry of the US army Rangers.
There are many more episodes but there is not enough space to review them. Unfortunately the series got cancelled for unknown reasons although people say it's because of how much criticism it got. I personally thought it was a neat show but I give it a 7.9/10 rating. While this show does prove that the person with better weaponry usually wins, it did occasionally leave out other factors.