Full Metal Jousting: Episode 4 ‘Blood and Guts’

Full Metal Jousting History Channel
Don’t miss the previous recaps: Episode 1: The Ultimate Extreme Sport and Episode 2: Unhorsed

Episode 4: ‘Blood and Guts’

In the Black Team’s locker room Rod is telling Joe that he had a great joust with a broken lance and unhorsing, that’s all they are asking for. Joe is still disappointed with his loss.

Over in the Red Team’s locker room Avery is strutting about celebrating his win. Ripper says that Avery is egotistical, obnoxious and he loves him for it. As the armor is being removed Avery tells his teammates that his first hit was solid, his second hit connected and he felt good. Then during the third pass Joe hit him so hard it changed everything. While Avery is a cocky guy he isn’t so full of himself to let the others that he was rocked during the joust.

Black Team Practice
For this practice session the jousters work on their riding and horse handling skills. No armor is needed. We see them working on the mechanics of the joust without any lances. A few competitors seem to be having problems handling the horses. But all in all it is a decent practice.

Red Team Practice
Same workout for the Red Team, no armor, riding and horse handling skills. They all appear to be comfortable on the horses and don’t have any issues

Shane tells them the horses are their teammates and they need to treat them right. If that means braiding their manes, giving them a massage or even sleeping in the stall with them. James ask if he can give his horse a treat and Shane says absolutely, spoil them if you want.

Let’s do it
We get to see a little more of the house antics during this episode. And it looks like an episode of the The Ultimate Fighter. The Red Team starts drinking, egos come out and tempers start to flare. David and John don’t get along and the alcohol isn’t helping. As their argument heats up David grabs John and puts him in a headlock. It takes three guys to separate them. They all go to bed and in the morning David offers a half hearted apology.

Joe McKinley meets with Shane and Rod to discuss leaving the show. He is afraid that he will be injured and ruin his lively-hood. Since he is out of the competition he doesn’t want to risk an injure on the chance he might be called back in. Shane tells him that he is a great jouster and should stay and train. Joe agrees to think about it and the issue is left unresolved.

Jousting Match-up – “Bring out the Hammer”
The teams assemble, Coach Ripper and the Red Team are in control again this week. Ripper chooses James “The Hammer” Fairclough for the Red Team. James is called “The Hammer” for his ability to hit so hard, even though he is one of the smaller competitors. Ripper calls Matt Hiltman to the list for the Black Team. James is a little surprised with the pick thinking that Matt is soft and not one of the better jousters. He believes he will win the joust. The coaches meet Shane in the stables to pick the horses.

A New Twist
Shane gathers the coaches and teams to add a new twist to the show. Shane and the coaches will pick 2 of the eliminated jousters to joust for $25,000 at the finale. Giving them all an incentive to continue training hard and sticking with the program. I’m not sure if this ‘twist’ was always planned or if it was something they came up with to keep Joe and the any others thinking of leaving to stay on the show. By the look of the competitors it seems to have worked. Joe says he will be staying and try for the new prize money.

Final Practice
During Matt’s final practice he is not having much success. He doesn’t have control of the horse, doesn’t have lance control and with each pass is getting more and more frustrated. He ends his practice session early as his frustration begins to rise.

James’ final practice ends even worse. As he is taking practice passes he and John Stikes charge and the joust ends with two massive hits and a double unhorsing. James is slow to get up and when he does needs the support of the coaches to stay standing. When they remove his helm his face is covered in blood. A trip to the hospital leaves him with staples in his head and a concussion diagnosis.

James returns to the ranch and informs Ripper and his team that he is out for the next 7 days, no jousting. Ripper is extremely upset, this setback throws a wrench into his plans for maintaining control of the jousts. A few jousters volenteer to take his spot but none of them seem excited about the idea. Ripper tells them he will decide and let them know.

Shane gathers the coaches and jousters again for the announcement. Ripper picks John Stikes to replace James. Its revealed that John and Matt used to work together as Theatrical Jousters. I guess for legal reasons they cannot name Medieval Times on the show. Matt injects that he was John’s boss at the job for over a year. Shane thinks it is a good pick and favors John going into the joust.

The jousters prepare their horses and ride out to the field.

The Joust

Full Metal Jousting History Channel Matt HiltmanBlack Team (1-2) Matt Hiltman riding Crispin
Full Metal Jousting History Channel John StikesRed Team (2-1) John Stikes riding Praetorian

Viewer poll: John 52%, Matt 48%

Shane describes the elimination joust. The joust will be officiated by four judges. There will be 8 passes. During the first 4 passes the lances will be an 1.25 inches thick. For the last 4 passes the lances will be 1.5 inches thick.

View the scoring rules

Pass 1:
Black Team, Matt: Broken Lance +5
Red Team, John: Miss

Pass 2:
Black Team, Matt: Broken Lance +5
Red Team, John: Strike +1

Pass 3:
Black Team, Matt: Miss
Red Team, John: Miss

Pass 4:

Black Team, Matt: Broken Lance +5
Red Team, John: Miss

Pass 5:
Black Team, Matt: Broken Lance +5
Red Team, John: Miss

Pass 6:
Black Team, Matt: Strike +1
Red Team, John: Red balk -5

Pass 7:
Black Team, Matt: Miss
Red Team, John: Miss

Pass 8:
Black Team, Matt: Miss
Red Team, John: Miss

Black Team, Matt: 21
Red Team, John: -4

Matt Hiltman wins and moves on to the next round.

Shane congratulates John and reminds him and all the competitors that connecting with the horse is of utmost importance for a successful joust.

We saw to new rules and one rule clarification this episode. The first being the -5 points John recieved for a ‘balking horse.’ As explained, if a jousgter doesn’t maintain control of the horse and it ‘balks’ or stops during the joust the rider recieves -5 points. The second new rule is the horse swap. If at any time the jouster is not connect with the horse or cannot control the horse he can choose to change horses. John changed horses and it seemed to work a little bit for him, but not enough to change the outcome of the joust. The rule clarification involves the unhorsing 2-minute rule as it applies ot the last pass. If I rider is knocked off his horse and is not able to re-mount and continue in the 2-minute time allotment than the other jouster wins. This rule applies to all passes, including the last pass.

As we get farther along in the series the history is getting less and less. Keep watching and i’ll evaluate any history that does appear.

Next week it looks like someone might get kicked off for punching a horse! Stay Tuned.

What’d you think? Tell us in the comments below.

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Comments 3

  1. jobsnaturalgas says:

    I am loving it man. Totally hooked. Go Rope!

  2. JoeUSA11 says:

    I stopped watching this show when they kicked Landon out. 
    I fully support what Landon did.
    It’s very simple: the safety of a man should Always come before the safety of the horse.
    Anyone trying to claim some sort of PC morally superior position should kill themselves to give the rest of nature leave of their opressive presence. 

  3. jobsnaturalgas says:

    I quit watching it after Rope got beat by 1 point. I totally agree with you about Landon. I have had a horse step on my foot and it hurts like hell. A lot of times it is the only way to get a horse off your foot. I love horses and in no way think Landon or any of those guys would abuse a horse or any other animal on purpose for no reason. I mean they wouldn’t be the riders they are unless they had great patience and loved horses. I thought it was a bad move on that jerk running the thing. He is just on a power trip and enjoys intimidation. I have missed the last 2 weeks and have no idea what’s going on. Getting ready to read up. Thanks for your comment Joe.. i am with you brother. ~Glen