Review by james2

"Treat as party fodder; one that will be dipped into now and then."

Besides the odd American Comedy, late night television is crap. Gone are the days where Channel 4 hosted a comedy night that included The Norm Show, Cheers, Home Improvement and Fraiser, now we have this mediocre Bo Selector and Euro Trash (which really is what the name suggests) to fill a gap which I used to stay up late for. There is a fine line that determines which show gets a crap status and others the utterly bizarre label. Channel 5 is often host to the latter, with many films featuring talking dogs and the 'it's so mind-boggling that I like it' Out There. A program that I knew existed but had never watched was Celebrity Deathmatch, a wacky extreme wrestling-type show which features celebrities made out of plasticine pummelling each other to a bloody pulp. The violence is graphic, the humour hilarious. And we all thought Play-Do stopped at Wallace and Gromit…

The premise to Celebrity Deathmatch is simple; take a celebrity, say Carman Electra or Jerry Springer and beat the opposition to a pulp. Or get beaten to shreds. Or basically do what I did and laugh uncontrollably at the great in-jokes and overall humour until your stomach hurts and you fall off the chair, leaving your character open to attack. Put it simply, this is a fight based around humour. The character I have laughed at the most has to be Ron Jeremy (who?), who's attacks include holding a chicken in front of his, ahem, meat and two veg, and then thrust forward. The opponent is hurt from the chicken waking from death and squawking from the pain, and no matter how many times you or your mates witness this act that will get the RSPCA sniffing around it's damn funny. Another of his moves involves him opening his flies, to which the camera locks onto the two commentators in the background. Their eyes bulge at what is happening behind you and make little comments such as 'I'm feeling a little aroused right now'. The camera then flicks back to the ring to find the opponent flat out on the floor. Hilarious. His finishing move? A quik jiggle around the centre of the squared circle to which two disco balls drop from nowhere and flatten the victim. Cue more funny comments from the two commentators, this time 'Oh my god, Ron Jeremy just slammed his gigantic balls right on top of her'. Great every time.

Most of the celebrities which feature are voiced by their real-life counterparts, those that aren't have annoying voices (such as Carman Electra, whose speech opens her for a beating). But it's not just some random quote, they really say what you'd expect them to mutter. Mr T for example does his 'Don't mess with the T-man, fool' and the presentation is fantastic. Why can't all games have this high level of commentary, which draws you in and won't let you go? For example, I started a fight and the commentator introduced himself. Then his wide-eyed co-anchor says 'and I'm naked, under this booth of course'. Ok…

The characters themselves show real-time damage, so if you get kicking them in the leg then it'll start bleeding and bits might come off. In one match MR-T had his legs sawn off, and hobbled around for the rest of the fight on his stumps. Fighting is pretty simple, with X beating your opponent with a simple attack. Square ups the anti a little with a high damage moves whilst Triangle being the 'special button'. In Ron's case a dog comes out of nowhere and begins to 'have it off' on his leg. Very amusing, I'm sure you'll agree. Circle grapples the opponent, which will see very graphic and death-defying moves being performed. Anna Nicole for example will shove her opponents head into her chest (so no all death-defying moves- what a way to go!), Cindy Margolis sits on her victims face (again, what a way to go!) whilst Ron Jeremy gets his….nob out. Hmmm…

Outside the ring the wealth of options on offer is poor. Episode mode pits you playing 18 matches to unlock new stuff, which won't take you very long to complete (about two hours). After that it's a case of pummelling a mate in your very own deathmatch or create a celebrity. The latter is very simple and lacklustre thanks to the limited options on offer. But despite this I was able to create a good take on a certain leading member of the Third Reich (complete with moustache). The moves you can assign your new celebrity are a pitiful choice of two (Master Beater and Golden Gloves, whatever they are) which really detracts from an otherwise good game.

Celebrity Deathmatch isn't a game you will be playing for hours, days and weeks on end, but instead one of those you'll pull out along with the dance mat for drunken parties. The sarcastic and dirty humour will last long into the night and your mates will be fighting over a chance to slaughter Jerry Springer and Justin Timberlake. Treat as party fodder; one that will be dipped into now and then.


Reviewer's Score: 5/10 | Originally Posted: 09/08/08

Game Release: MTV's Celebrity Deathmatch (EU, 10/31/03)


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