Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) was back on cable television last night (Fri., March 30, 2012) with episode four of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 15 "Live" on FX.
And wouldn't you know, it's the same old, same old.
The allure of the live fight format has already worn off and we're only four episodes in. Sure, it still serves to create the kind of feel a prerecorded bout could never come close to, but when you strip it all away, does it really matter if the fights are live?
It's still the same show, after all.
Last night's episode truly showcased that watching men train and game plan for their upcoming fight can only make for good TV for so long. And by so long, I mean a few episodes.
Where's the meat?
Because of the way the show is set up, TUF inevitably runs into the wall of having to introduce each contestant on the show. This despite the fact that sooner rather than later, that very same contestant isn't going to be an active participant.
Such was the case with Myles Jury, who was a heavy favorite to defeat Urijah Faber's top pick, Al Iaquinta. In fact, it was widely expected that Jury could be one of the two men remaining at the live Finale in Las Vegas.
So we got to know him and the fact that this was his second go-round on the show, the first coming during season 13 when he was bounced unceremoniously thanks to a knee injury. He was created into somewhat of a sympathetic character because of this and it was hard not to hope for the best for him.
And then a scene plays that showcases Team Dominick Cruz pulling Jury out of the shower to lead him in a cheer for his upcoming fight. And suddenly we're smacked in the face with a reminder that this is just a silly reality show and there's no real reason to care at all.
That's why it didn't matter all that much when Jury turned in an uninspiring performance in the eventual fight. He didn't do what he was told by his coaches and he failed miserably to live up to his 9-0 record. Al Iaquinta, on the other hand, looked outstanding in his role as the underdog who can scrap.
Urijah Faber took control of the game with Iaquinta's win and so chose the next match-up, a right with which UFC President Dana White seems to believe the entire show revolves around. We know this because he makes sure to remind us how important the fights are because it will determine who controls the next match-up. Even though eventually the list whittles down to a point in which it doesn't matter.
Just more trivial garbage to pass the time, I suppose.
For complete results and the running live blog of last night's TUF 15, episode four click here.