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Deadliest Warrior is a awful television show on Spike TV that portrays two combatants (or groups of combatants in some cases, such as with the IRA vs Taliban episode) that have no chance in hell of ever meeting one another, and pits them against each other, first by performing tests on a random selection of weapons assigned to each side and then by plugging the test data into a videogame. All of this is accompanied by a lot of formulaic bluster by the self-proclaimed "experts" on each side about why "their" guy is better. It may cause some to lose faith in Western civilization.
The show claims to be historically and scientifically accurate, however it's often criticized for its pseudoscientific and pseudohistorical skewing to please the viewers. The allegations include but are not limited to non-expert "experts", faked tests (e.g., a RPG firing "enhanced" with CGI), assigning the combatants equipment that are either way beyond the combatants' time period, giving them equipment that they would normally not use (e.g., giving the IRA a slingshot, providing the musketeers with weapons from a variety of different time periods), and reinforcing pop culture stereotypes (e.g., Mel Gibsonizing William Wallace, 300 style Spartans, etc) over historical facts. The so-called experts are frequently drawn from very disparate backgrounds. The Musketeer vs. Ming warrior episode featured a group of history professors on the French side and a group of martial artists on the Chinese side. Episodes featuring organized crime (Mafia, Yakuza, Al Capone) generally present somebody tangentially related to a famous figure as somehow an expert.
In addition to the data gained from the weapons tests a number of "X-factors" are factored in to the simulation, supposedly to account for intangible qualities like "leadership" and "courage." What this really means is that the producers can manipulate this completely arbitrary data to produce whatever result will get the best ratings.
The show concludes with a staged fight between two classes of historical warriors, often in combinations that would make even the Society for Creative Anachronism cry. It was briefly discussed on Charlie Brooker's You Have Been Watching, where it was promptly mocked for being idiotic. Blogger BS Historian, who wrote a detailed expose on the show's inaccuracies and inconsistencies, referred to it as "pulling a Brainiac", in reference to another supposedly scientific show that was caught faking results.
The third (and thankfully final) season began incorporating vampires and zombies. It is arguable that this is less odious than their behavior regarding historical combatants because as vampires and zombies never existed, they would have to make up any data pertaining to them.
- Mall ninja: The target audience.