Flashback: MTV's 'Celebrity Deathmatch' Pits Kid Rock Against Eminem - Rolling Stone
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Flashback: MTV’s ‘Celebrity Deathmatch’ Pits Kid Rock Against Eminem

Long before DMX challenged George Zimmerman, celebrities were regularly disemboweled or skinned alive on MTV’s ‘Deathmatch’

The supremely bizarre news that DMX is going to box George Zimmerman (“and in this corner, the man who shot and killed an unarmed teenager. . .”) got us thinking about MTV’s Celebrity Deathmatch. For those of you that didn’t watch MTV in the late ’90s and early 2000’s, Celebrity Deathmatch was an ultra-violent claymation show where celebrities of the day like Jerry Springer, Fiona Apple, Puff Daddy and Carmen Electra boxed each other, often to the death. It wasn’t uncommon for them to reach Mortal Kombat-like ends with celebrities regularly getting skinned alive or disemboweled.

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Celebrity Deathmatch ran for five seasons between 1998 and 2002, and then again on MTV2 for another two in 2006 and 2007. The show earned pretty high ratings throughout, but at a certain point it just got played out. How many times can you watch clay figures pummel each other into smithereens? 

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Near the end of the show’s original run, Fox attempted to get in the action by creating a real-life counterpart: Celebrity Boxing. Sadly, it only aired twice. But that was enough time for the world to see such incredible matches as Todd Bridges vs. Vanilla Ice and Paula Jones vs. Tonya Harding. The most memorable bout was Dustin “Screech” Diamond vs. Ron “Horshack” Palillo. It was a war of the TV nerds, and Screech won decisively in the second round by TKO. 

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The exact details of the DMX/George Zimmerman fight will be announced next Wednesday at a press conference. In the meantime, here’s a look at the Celebrity Deathmatch episode where Kid Rock fought Eminem in 2000.

In This Article: Eminem, Kid Rock, MTV


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