We're all familiar with American Gladiators, the early '90s phenomenon that pitted Joe Everyman against a series of hulking, testosterone-fueled beasts. But beneath their powerful pectorals, these gladiators had hearts… tortured hearts. For more, we turn to their Lost Diaries.



NITRO (Dec. 22nd, 1993):
It's getting harder and harder to focus when I'm out there in the arena. It's… Laser. I don't know what it is about him. His powerful grip on the tennis ball gun… the way his thighs clench when he climbs the rock wall… I shouldn't write this down. I shouldn't even think it. It's a sick perversion. This will be the last time I mention it.

ICE (Dec. 30th, 1993):
As I near my 8th month of pregnancy, I wonder if I should still be competing. I've taken some pretty hard blows to the stomach in the Joust lately, but I think the baby can take it. I haven't been doing 300 Uterus Crunches every morning for nothing. Gemini says I'm going to have to name the baby "Crushed Ice." He's such a goofball. I mean, I'm sure it's fine, you know? Not every mother-to-be can feel the baby kicking. Right?

TURBO (Jan. 6th, 1994):
I hate this place and I want to go home. Strutting around on national television, these tights vacuum-sealed like my genitals have an expiration date. Rolling around in a glorified hamster wheel like some circus sideshow freak. Getting shoved, pushed and tackled by a bunch of nobodies while the audience's taunting laughter echoes in my nightmares. Well, not anymore. Not once I fill the tennis ball gun with lacrosse balls. Then we'll all share a good laugh, won't we, Diary?

NITRO (Jan. 11th, 1994):
Nitro <3 Laser
Laser <3 Nitro
Nitro Laserson
Laser Nitroberg
Dear Laser,
Dear Laser,
                          Dear Laser,

GEMINI (Jan. 15th, 1994):
Today Ice asked me to come along and help her pick out a crib and some toys for the baby. I hope she kept the receipts.




NITRO (Jan. 19th, 1994):
I can't fight this anymore. I need Laser. I need to be deep inside him. I don't have a choice… he doesn't have a choice. Tonight, after the Eliminator… I will make him love me.




LASER (Jan. 20th, 1994):
(Entry illegible, ink smudged by tears)