David S. Holloway/History
Kevin P. Sullivan
June 22, 2015 AT 02:12 PM EDT

Forged in Fire

type
TV Show
Current Status
In Season
seasons
1
performer
Wil Willis
broadcaster
The History Channel
genre
Game-Show

We gave it an A-

The History channel’s new reality competition is basically a Top Chef fan’s fever dream. At the start of each episode, four competing blacksmiths (most of whom are richly bearded) are tasked with creating a specific weapon. The judges then run each blade through a gamut of tests to determine whether the knife/sword/ax is a good knife/sword/ax. Why are they doing this? How does $10,000 sound? During the premiere, we see suspended, whole fish sliced with katanas—and no one present seems to think this is remotely bizarre. It’s simply what one must do to compare the weapons, and—like the entire show—it’s sharply awesome. A–

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