Taking on Tyson Image
Metascore
69

Generally favorable reviews - based on 10 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: The reality show focuses on former boxer Mike Tyson and his goal to become a champion of pigeon racing.
  • Genre(s): Drama, Documentary
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 10
  2. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. Reviewed by: Linda Stasi
    Mar 4, 2011
    88
    Taking on Tyson is only a six-part series, but, in that limited time, this heartwarming, gorgeously filmed show reveals a terrifying man who has not just grown up, but grown into someone you now might want to know.
  2. Reviewed by: David Hinckley
    Mar 4, 2011
    80
    It's a feel-good story, and what makes it more satisfying is that in contrast to so many reality shows, the people here feel genuine, with no sense they're performing for the camera. This one's a contender.
  3. Reviewed by: Neil Genzlinger
    Mar 7, 2011
    80
    It would make an interesting documentary even without Mr. Tyson. With him, it becomes a personal test for the viewer.
  4. Reviewed by: Rob Owen
    Mar 4, 2011
    70
    If the concept of Taking on Tyson seems odd, the execution is more predictable, framing Mr. Tyson's pigeon racing, his first competitive endeavor in several years, as a kind of therapy. Still, the show benefits from some surprisingly strong visuals of the birds in flight--at least for viewers who do not see pigeons as rodents with wings.
  5. Reviewed by: Mark A. Perigard
    Mar 7, 2011
    67
    Serenity arrives in surprising ways. Whether Mike makes it in this arena or not, Taking on Tyson suggests he's already won his toughest battle.
  6. Reviewed by: Tim Goodman
    Mar 4, 2011
    60
    Judging from the first of six hours that will air, this might be the perfect series where you can plop on the couch, pop a beer and think, "This is all a little odd."
  7. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    Mar 4, 2011
    40
    Tyson is joined by a colorful group of guys who easily could have been extras on "The Sopranos," but his quest to become a champion in this new arena simply doesn't hold enough interest to stay airborne.

See all 10 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 1
  2. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Mar 14, 2011
    4
    Watched the pilot and tried to watch episode 2 but couldn't finish it. Plays a bit like a reality competition show, except you get the sense that the contestants care less about the stakes than the producers. The pigeon racing scene just doesn't seem all that competitive. It's more like watching a bunch of guys who love raising birds as opposed to racing them. The other problem is that the activity of pigeon racing/raising in itself is really boring. They eat, they poo, they fly.
    However the major let down is Iron Mike himself. While it's nice to see that he's turned into a nice normal middle-aged man, it unfortunately doesn't make for very good television. Additionally, in 1.5 episodes, his interaction with the birds is rather limited. Most of the raising, and racing for that matter, is done by his team of hired bird experts who essentially run the whole show. Mike appears to simply finance the operation and lend his enthusiasm every so often. Not recommended.
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