June 29, 2017
NBC Gets Physical This Summer With ‘American Ninja Warrior,’ ‘Spartan,’ And 2016 Olympics

NBC kicks off its summer TV scheduling this week with an emphasis on powerful athletes. American Ninja Warrior returns alongside two additional digital series, Crashing the Course and 24/B4. This year, fans of American Ninja Warrior, which begins its eighth season this Wednesday, will be given more ways to connect and engage with the summer series with Crashing the Course and 24/B4, which have launched today on the NBC app, NBC.com, and the American Ninja Warrior YouTube channel.

"We are really excited about the two digital series we've created for the upcoming season which allows fans to engage and share what we believe to be truly insightful elements of the American Ninja Warrior experience," said Rob Hayes, Executive Vice President, Digital, NBC Entertainment. "This show has some of the most passionate fans in the world and we love providing them with as much content as possible on our digital and social platforms."

Hosted by Alex Weber, Crashing the Course will give fans insight on how each of the different obstacles used in American Ninja Warrior are designed, constructed, and tested. 24/B4 will spotlight a different "Ninja" each week and will share how each of them prepare for the competition mentally, physically, and even emotionally. Each show will focus on the 24 hours of "the life of a Ninja" before the competition.


"Over the course of seven seasons we've captured countless hours of really interesting content that never makes it to air on American Ninja Warrior and we wanted to share that content with our audiences," said Kent Weed, the executive producer of the two digital series. "These new shows will give an exclusive look into what's going on behind the scenes, providing viewers with an insiders' look at all the work that goes into the course construction and testing, while also profiling top Ninjas as they prepare to conquer the course and punch their ticket to the Las Vegas finals."


American Ninja Warrior will once again be hosted by Matt Iseman and former NFL player Akbar Gbajabiamila, with Kristine Leahy interviewing the various "Ninjas" on the course.

NBC continues to get physical this summer with the debut of Spartan: Ultimate Team Challenge followed by the 2016 Olympics in August. Spartan is created by the producers of American Ninja Warrior and draws inspiration from the leading obstacle course race, Spartan Race. Instead of individual racers, Spartan will feature groups of friends, family, co-workers – you name it – all working together to complete a tough obstacle course in hopes of winning the $250,000 prize.

Each episode of Spartan: Ultimate Team Challenge will feature six teams consisting of five players (one "Spartan elite" member plus two men and two women). The winning team of each episode will then be given the chance to compete with the other winners for a huge showdown at the National Finals.

Spartan: Ultimate Team Challenge will be hosted by NFL linebacker and TV host Dhani Jones and professional soccer player Kyle Martino, with course reporter Even Dollard (former American Gladiator champ "Rocket" and five-time American Ninja Warrior competitor) and sports reporter MJ Acosta.

Original episodes of American Ninja Warrior will air exclusively on NBC with encore presentations of the show will air on the Esquire Network. American Ninja Warrior premieres on Wednesday, June 1 at 8 p.m. Spartan: Ultimate Team Challenge will tag team on scheduling with American Ninja Warrior on June 13 and June 20 before moving to its regular time slot on Thursdays beginning on June 23 at 9 p.m.

Last but certainly not least, the 2016 Summer Olympic Games held in Rio will air on not only on NBC but also NBCSN, Golf, CNBC, MSNBC, USA Network, and NBCOlmypics.com. The three-week event begins with opening ceremonies on Friday, August 5 and finishes with closing ceremonies on Sunday, August 21.

[Image via NBC]