Get the Secret Lowdown — Here’s the Backstory of Black Ops on ‘Gladiators’

Black Ops from Gladiators

We’re only four episodes in, and Gladiators is already shaking the nation. This reboot has captured what made the original series so action-packed, but with a few modern twists. 

Gladiators was an Aussie reality series that ran from 1995 until 1996. In this show, a number of permanent competitors, called Gladiators, battle against a number of one-time contestants, called Contenders. These battles consisted of races up a pyramid, tug-of-war games that were held in the sky, and an ominous challenge called The Eliminator. 

In 2024, all of these details are back, plus a few extra ones. For instance, there’s a new challenge called Edge. In this challenge, one Contender and one Gladiator stand on a series of platforms that are raised high above the ground. The Contender then must race from one side to the other, all while avoiding being knocked off by a Gladiator.

According to numerous fans of Gladiators, they are loving this mix of new and old.

“Really love the show,” wrote one fan on Instagram. “The enthusiasm of the characters, the theatre they put on, and just how generally nice they all are. Super fun.”


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“Love the whole show!” wrote another. “So good to have it back on the TV. My kids are loving it just as much as I did when I was a kid.”

However, this show isn’t just creating fresh challenges and bringing back the good old days. There’s a new character entering the arena. A character called Black Ops.

So, who is this Black Ops? And what separates him from the rest of his fellow Gladiators? Here are the facts that you need to know.

Who Is Gladiators’ Black Ops?

Gladiators’ Black Ops isn’t your normal combatant. He isn’t dressed head-to-toe in spandex. He’s instead dressed in all black. He doesn’t enter with a theme song. He instead sneaks on in silence. 

Unlike a standard Gladiator or Contender, Black Ops will be allowed to sabotage his opponents. The normal rules of each challenge don’t always apply to him. This gives him a terrifying advantage. 


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In 2024, Black Ops is being performed by Bertrand Venail. Bertrand is best known for being a former professional soccer player and a current CrossFit Elite athlete.

Gladiators airs at 7.30pm on Sundays – Wednesdays, only on 10 and 10 Play on Demand. Miss an episode? Catch up on 10 Play.

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