Fight Night

Episode Report Card
Sobell: B- | Grade It Now!
(It's a fake) Rocky

The episode opens with an anonymous voice gloating, "Three hundred pounds of pressure. Let the bassline getcha!" The camera swoops into an opulent casino (my bet: Mandalay Bay, since they have the boxing facility), and we see a boxing banner that reads, "Steele vs. Molina. Revenge in the Desert. November 9, 2002." Well, it beats "Two Old Geezers at Caesar's," but not by much. We see a sleek blonde in a floor-length dress being squired in by someone who's apparently recognized by the press, we see the cameras snapping in the ring, and we see someone whaling away in the ring. There's a boxing match going on; I suppose I could cover it by writing, "Jabs! Uppercuts! The ol' one-two! Overhand right!" but the truth is that I've always thought of boxing as a barbaric vehicle in which crooked men make a lot of money off fixed fights, and if I want to see two people pretending to have a fair match, I'll go with the infinitely more entertaining WWE. So I really can't recap the fight for you. I can, however, note that a small bald man is hauling ass across the casino floor, and I don't blame him; it looks like he's being pursued by Bel, Biv, or possible DeVoe, and their accompanying thug posse. The music keeps playing ("Time to test it/let's give it your best stuff/don't sweat it/time to test it/let's get messed up/throw your best stuff") and the boxers keep boxing, and as the blood flies, I am reminded once more why I despise this alleged "sport" on the professional level. The ref lets the bald fighter lean against the ropes while the other boxer beats him to a bloody pulp; in the stands, a cheap blonde in a tacky red dress and one of those diamond necklaces Madonna would have worn during her Material Girl phase is standing up and cheering loudly for the pummeller. After the bald man's been sufficiently pounded, the referee snaps out of his reverie and calls the round. The bald man, Laroi, heads back to his corner, where Roma Maffia awaits. Hasn't he suffered enough for one night? In any event, his keepers cajole him into going another round. A girl in a gold bikini saunters out with the next card -- I'll be darned, this is taking place at the Venetian, not the Mandalay Bay -- and we see the cheap blonde in the red dress one more time. She's brought a cowboy with her. The bikini babe walks by, the man tips his hat, and the blonde elbows him and shouts something unintelligible, but clearly meant as a rebuke. Laroi's handlers exhort him to go back into the ring, a decision they come to regret as the round ends with Laroi, unable to dodge any of his opponent's blows, dropping dead.

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