Los Angeles, CA. (July 23, 2007)-From the producers of American Chopper and Dirty Jobs, the VERSUS original series TapouT follows Mask, Punkass and Skyskrape-the crew behind the premier mixed martial arts clothing and gear line TapouT-on their cross country travels in search of the next MMA superstar. After a great series debut in June- which included three episodes and saw a 140 percent increase in household impressions for the time period average-all new episodes featuring the bad boys of MMA will premiere on VERSUS Wednesdays beginning August 1** at 10 p.m. ET/PT.
Traveling around the country in a tricked out tour bus, the crew is on the hunt to discover a fighter who has what it takes to represent the TapouT label; and before these up and comers fight their way out of the cage, they have to fight to their way in with the TapouT crew. The crew bonds with their fighter testing out his personality, and in between the usual TapouT mayhem makes sure their new protÃ©gÃ© gets the proper training before the big fight. In each episode, it’s all on the line in the dramatic conclusion as each fighter gets one shot to impress the crew and show off his skills in the cage.
“With this original reality series and our live World Extreme Cagefighting events, we are closer to our goal of becoming a top destination for the best mixed martial arts programming on television,” said Marc Fein, Senior Vice President of Programming and Production for VERSUS. “The uncompromising quality of our fights and original productions is what differentiates VERSUS from other networks.”
The TapouT brand is Mask’s-“The General” of the crew-creation. His ‘inyaface’ attitude and no-nonsense approach are the basis of the TapouT world and a favorite of fans. Whether it’s prepping fighters or meeting fans, Mask is one of the most recognizable personalities in the combat sports world from the Las Vegas strip to the streets of New York City. Punk Ass is the strong, silent type with the entrepreneurial mind-he’s all business, all the time. He’s the tough guy in any neighborhood he decides to make his own. Skyskrape is the clown of the crew and is always decked out in outrageous wigs, costumes and sarcasm and he gets the crowd energized and pumped for every event.
“In mainstream clothing and television, TapouT is completely new on the scene. It’s the new guy against the big Greats. There is something about the new guy that believes he’s meant to do GREAT things!” Character and TapouT creator Mask believes in the solid partnership with VERSUS.
Schedule and descriptions for new episodes to follow. All times are 10 p.m. ET/PT, subject to change:
AUGUST 1: THE SEARCH CONTINUES
TapouT scouts several talented fighters on a cross-country trip looking for new talent. They stop in at Matt Hughes’ farm before heading out to the Ring of Fire, a mixed martial arts event in Colorado.
AUGUST 8: CHARUTO
TapouT travels to Hawaii to sponsor Charuto who is BJ Penn’s jiu-jitsu instructor. He hopes that with TapouT’s help, he’ll make his mark at the Icon MMA event in Honolulu.
AUGUST 15: SERGIO
TapouT meets Sergio, a promising fighter out of David Strasser’s gym in Wisconsin. Sergio is struggling to leave his day job behind and become a full time fighter and he gets his shot at his first MMA event in Las Vegas.
AUGUST 22: SUNSHINE
TapouT hits the road with their newest discovery Sunshine. The crew does their best to get their wide-eyed, innocent fighter into trouble before arriving in New Jersey for an MMA event at a baseball field.
AUGUST 29: ROB ROY
The secretive Rob Roy is TapouT’s latest fighter. His next fight is at a biker rally on the Mississippi River and everyone gets into plenty of trouble before Rob Roy finally steps into the ring.
**To ensure viewers get their full TapouT fix, VERSUS will air a marathon of the first three episodes on July 31, from 8pm-11pm PT/ET. The marathon will be hosted by the TapouT Crew as they recap the best hits, the wildest moments, and the biggest names in MMA.
DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH (8 p.m. ET)
Mask, Skyskrape, and Punkass find a potential fighter in Albuquerque and take him to the Extreme Challenge in Iowa.
LITTLE FIREBALL EPISODE (9 p.m. ET)
The TapouT crew travels to Chuck Liddell’s training center, the Pit, and decide to sponsor his friend and training partner, Antonio. Mask and the crew join Antonio in Las Vegas for his fight.
HOT HEAD (10 p.m. ET)
TapouT picks up an inexperienced fighter at the American Kick Boxing Academy and takes him to his first professional bout. Along the way, the fighter learns some tough lessons about what it takes to be a pro.