|Balrog VS TJ Combo|
|Air date||August 16th, 2017|
|Written by||Nick Cramer|
|Animated by|| Torrian Crawford |
|Episode link|| Rooster Teeth |
Lucario VS Renamon
Shredder VS Silver Samurai
Balrog VS TJ Combo is the 81st episode of DEATH BATTLE, featuring Balrog from Street Fighter and TJ Combo from Killer Instinct in a battle between two of the most iconic boxers from popular fighting games. Balrog was voiced by Chris Jai Alex and TJ Combo was voiced by Gabriel Kunda.
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The battle of boxers! Two champion fighters enter the ring with the goal to win... at any cost. Only one will leave alive!
(*Cues: Invader - Jim Johnston*)
Boomstick: Thousands of years ago, one Greek guy punched another Greek guy, and then they just turned it into a sport.
Wiz: Indeed, boxing is one of the oldest Olympic sports, and has since been refined and perfected over nearly 3,000 years.
Boomstick: And today, we're pitting two of gaming's toughest boxers head-to-head.
Wiz: Balrog, the crazy buffalo from Street Fighter.
Boomstick: And TJ Combo, the hard hitting champ from Killer Instinct. He's Wiz and I'm Boomstick.
Wiz: And it's our job to analyze their weapons, armor & skill to find out who would win... A DEATH BATTLE.
Wiz: Boxer. Gambler. Cheater. Heavyweight champ Balrog has been called many things. "Merciful" was never one of them.
Boomstick: Hard to blame him, given his rough upbringing. Born and raised in a ghetto neighborhood, the young brawler to be had one goal: to leave his poor family and taste that sweet, sweet American dream. You know, the boozing, gambling, and womanizing kind of dream!
Wiz: A brute at heart, Balrog learned early on that he had a gift for roughing others up. A gift which he soon turned into a professional boxing career.
Boomstick: Does that really surprise anyone, though? I mean, look at the guy! His skin can barely even contain his own muscles!
(*Cues: Theme of Balrog - Street Fighter V*)
Wiz: At 6"4 and 298 pounds, Balrog is a monster. Compared to real life boxers, Balrog would be the second largest heavyweight champion in the entire history of the sport.
Boomstick: Talk about a beast! He makes good use of that size and strength, as he specializes in slugger style boxing.
Wiz: Out of the four generally accepted styles of boxing, sluggers are the most straightforward. They sacrifice mobility and finesse in favor of unwavering perseverance and terrifying brute force.
Boomstick: And Balrog embodies this style to a tee! Sluggers are great at taking lots of hits without going down, and then KOing their opponents with just a couple big punches. In Balrog's case, his Dashing punches let him come in swinging. His Screw Smash uppercut is so brutal, it can power through other attacks. But Balrog's strength REALLY shines with his famous Gigaton Blow, or with his incredibly deadly Turn Punch... if he's able to hit anything with it, that is. The longer he tenses his arm up for, the more powerful the move gets.
Wiz: While all these moves are fair game in the rules of boxing, fairness is the last thing Balrog cares about.
(*Cues: Balrog Theme - Super Street Fighter IV*)
Boomstick: Damn! This friggin' guy is crazy! I mean, really, look at those eyes! That's the same look old grandpappy Boomstick had every time he came home with some fresh poultry dinner. 'Til the damn chickens got him...
Wiz: Unfortunately, his victory was short lived, when he returned to the ring, he ended up killing his opponent. With his career ruined, Balrog returned to the life of gambling, booze, and women.
Boomstick: Man, he got to kill a guy and drink all day? Talk about living the life! But B-Rog wasn't done flexing his fighting skills, he joined the crime syndicate Shadaloo, and basically punched his way up to become its founder's right hand man, and who wouldn't want someone as rough and tough as Balrog at their side?
Wiz: Especially since he's so strong, he once killed an elephant with just one punch. See this one? His name's Kudal, Balrog killed his best friend.
Boomstick: Good, frigging elephants had it coming for years, never shut up! And someone always loses on Dhalsim's stage!
Wiz: Elephants commonly use their skulls to knock down trees, meaning they can withstand a force of at least 10,000 pounds. The strongest punch ever recorded comes from heavyweight champ, Frank Bruno, with a force of 1,420 pounds, a dangerous amount of strength, to be sure, but still only one seventh of Balrog's potential.
Boomstick: But Balrog wouldn't be a true slugger if he couldn't take a beating. He battled the sumo wrestler E. Honda, and the two fell off a cliff, and they both survived!
Wiz: We know this fight takes place in Thailand, and on a cliff overlooking the river, this area is very similar to the northern Kwai Yai river, which can be more than 300 feet wide. By comparing that to the with of the river as seen here, we can estimate the cliff to be 1,272 feet high.
Boomstick: But while Balrog may have the raw power of a slugger, he's got all the downsides that come with it, too.
Boomstick: Yeah, he's not the brightest shed in the tool, if you know what I mean.
Wiz: Tool in the shed.
Boomstick: You're a tool! After Shadaloo's head honcho was defeated, Balrog got a promotion and ran the whole crime syndicate himself, until he ran the whole organization into the ground.
Wiz: Probably a few too many blows to the head.
Boomstick: But hey, we're not here to test his management skills. Balrog been out of the ring for years, but today, he's here to show he's still got what it takes to win. At the end of the day, you've gotta respect the crazy buffalo.
Balrog: I can almost smell the money now, if I can pull this off, I'll be on easy street forever.
(*Cues: Killer Instinct - Main Theme*)
Boomstick: (Announcer voice) Standing 6" 1 and weighing 220 pounds, TJ Combo is the definition of a champion.
Wiz: But he didn't start out that way. Born to a poor family on the Texas coast, Tyler-Johnson Garrett was in for a rough road to fame and glory. TJ didn't have much, but he did have boxing.
Boomstick: TJ's dad trained him to box, and he joined a Junior League when he was 12 years old, where he promptly lost.
Wiz: But instead of learning from his mistakes and trying again the next year, TJ replaced the padding in his glove with a roll of quarters and got his revenge with one savage blow. If he learned anything that day, it was only how good it felt to win.
Boomstick: Well, the Junior League didn't exactly agree, so they kicked him out. For the rest of his childhood, he was in and out of trouble. But unwilling to give up, TJ eventually took what little he owned to start a new life at a boxing gym in Chicago....as a janitor. Hey, you gotta start somewhere.
(*Cues: Yo Check This Out! - Killer Instinct*)
Boomstick: You could say he was really "cleaning it up in the ring". Until he finally got a shot at the Heavyweight Championship.
Wiz: Like his hero, Ali, TJ fights using an Out-Boxer style, staying outside an opponent's reach with evasive maneuvers and taking advantage of missed swings.
Boomstick: Aww. It's a straight punch that knocks even the toughest opponent backward. His Tremor Punch is a flying overhand attack that can hit the ground so hard, it creates a shockwave that knocks people off their feet. And he can even send them skyward with his Vortex Uppercut.
Wiz: But his fighting style goes beyond mere punches, his Flying Knee is good for aggressively closing in on opponents, and his Shoot Toss sets them up for his famous combos.
Boomstick: That's where he got the nickname "TJ Combo".
Wiz: Is that how you got your nickname, Boomstick?
Boomstick: Nickname? What in the hell are you talking about?
Wiz: Oh, never mind. Through years of hard work and dedication, TJ eventually won the heavyweight championship.
Wiz: At last, fame, fortune, and glory were in his hands, and then they all went to his head. TJ got lazy, blowing his prize money on parties.
Boomstick: Good for him.
Wiz: And ignoring his training until he lost the title.
Boomstick: Aw, shoot, man, this poor guy just can't keep it together, can he?
Wiz: That's when the world dominating mega corporation Ultratech, aka evil Walmart, offered TJ an experimental surgical procedure to put him back on top.
Boomstick: And TJ remembered the lesson he learned long ago: If all else fails, just cheat shamelessly.
Wiz: Ultratech fused titanium implants into TJ's arms, drastically increasing his striking power. Within six months, TJ won his title back, and held it for twenty years, but Ultratech wanted a favor in return.
Boomstick: They waited twenty whole years to cash in the favor? Nobody's that patient.
Wiz: Ultratech had a new product, a robot warrior they wanted to showcase in a battle against the boxing champ. They left TJ with one word of instruction: Lose.
Boomstick: But TJ smashed it to pieces in front of a live audience, because screw perfectly legal, long-term business contracts.
Wiz: In response, Ultratech exposed TJ for the cheater he was, and thus, he was banned from boxing, again! But this time, TJ refused to go out in disgrace.
Boomstick: So he ripped the metal right out of his arms with his bare hands. Like a badass!
(*Cues: The Instinct - Killer Instinct (2013)*)
Wiz: Or a complete idiot, but by some extreme luck, Ultratech experimentation left him with a minor healing factor, which ensured his arms weren't ruined forever. What's more, he also learned he could enter a berserker mode, which enables him to move and punch faster when in desperate situations.
Boomstick: Well, robo arms or not, TJ is one impressive fighter, his punches can launch heavy enemies like Fulgore over thirteen feet into the air, and holding the championship for twenty years is way longer than the world record.
Wiz: Currently, the longest held heavyweight title belongs to Joe Louis, who's reign lasted eleven years, eight months, and eight days. TJ defended his title for nearly twice that length.
Boomstick: Plus, TJ's got plenty of experience outside the ring, without implants, he's defeated the secret agent, Orchid, the upgraded warbot Fulgore mark II, and killed multiple Ultratech super dinosaurs! That's right, this is a boxer who kills frickin' velociraptors on the regular.
Wiz: And he's obviously very resilient to pain, like when he survived jumping out of an Ultratech skyscraper, based on the amount of time it takes other unfortunate visitors to fall from the top floor, this building must be 1,162 feet tall.
Boomstick: But we all know this boxing champ never had a perfect record, he lost fights to Glacius, the ice alien, and twice was outmatched by squads of Ultratech super soldiers.
Wiz: Also, while TJ's Out-Boxer style is quick and resilient, it can be overwhelmed by an aggressive enough opponent, if he gets overconfident, he's sure to lose an important fight sooner rather than later.
Boomstick: But since being outed, he's determined to prove his skill is all natural, it's gonna take a lot to bring down a champion like TJ Combo.
TJ: And don't think for a moment that I'll let anything get in my way, cause if you give me that moment, I'll win!
Announcer: Ladies and gentlemen; Introducing our first fighter: He's big, he's crude and all raw hide-
(*Cues: STREET FIGHTER V : Ed Theme*)
Balrog comes in as his two lackeys beside him surround him.
Announcer: He's Balroooooog!!! Now for the challenger: a heavyweight champion with a shady history who's here to prove he can beat the best of the best even without awesome metal arms!
(*Cues: I'm Back (To Rise)- Killer Instinct*)
TJ Combo comes in as he shadow boxes one of his lackeys.
Announcer: He's TJ Comboooo!!!
Both TJ and Balrog step into the ring and meet each other.
TJ Combo: Man, think you got what it takes to beat the champ?
TJ and Balrog punch their hands to each other.
Balrog: (laughs) You won't even make it to Round 2, wimp!
(*audio quality improves*)
TJ and Balrog walk back, Balrog stands in his fighting pose, punches in the air and yells. TJ Combo punches in the air and stands in fighting pose.
Announcer: Here we go! Aaannnd....FIGHT!
TJ and Balrog approach to eact other, Balrog tried to punch TJ with his right hook but he ducks under the punch, Balrog uses his left hook and succesfully hits TJ three times, before Combo manages to dodge.
Announcer: And Balrog starts strong and ferocious! Better stay out of his way, TJ!
Balrog continues punching, but TJ dodges, and goes in for two more punches, but the Crazy Buffalo blocks them both. This pattern continues until suddenly, when TJ goes in for a left and starts to punch Balrog's shoulder, he blocks and starts to land several hard forceful blows before knocking TJ out of his range, as Combo stumbles back up.
Announcer: TJ's quick, but Balrog is clearly overwhelming him!
Balrog throws a dashing punch once TJ has gotten up, trapping him into a corner.
Announcer: JUST LIKE THAT, BALROG PUTS COMBO IN A CORNER! AND HERE HE COMES FOR THE FOLLOW UP! TJ IS NOT IN A GOOD SPOT!
Balrog dashes over to the corner and starts beating TJ to a pulp rapidly, but as he charges a strong blow, Combo rolls out of the corner. Balrog, surprised, turns around to see TJ running to him before punching him into the corner.
Announcer: Whoa, whoa! Wait a minute! Did TJ just turn this around?
TJ starts punching Balrog in his head, legs and then chest. Balrog releases his deadly Screw Smash uppercut, to which TJ dodges, making the Crazy Buffalo's fist hit the ground. Combo, seeing his chance, then jumps into the air, and punches Balrog hard, making him collapse to the ground.
Announcer: INCREDIBLE! OUT OF NOWHERE, BALROG'S THE FIRST TO FALL!
Balrog gets up off the ground.
Balrog: *heavy breathing/growling* Annoying bastard... I'll break you like a rag doll!
The two fighters get in fighting stances and walk to the center, ready to engage again, but the bell rings and the referee holds his arms out, stopping them in their tracks.
Announcer: That's the bell, ending Round 1! Folks, it looks like Balrog clearly had the range in this fight, but I'd say TJ proved he can give as good as he gets!
The two sit in opposing corners of the ring, taking a breather.
Announcer: Moving into Round 2! I think this is too close to call!
The bell rings and the ref gives them the sign to begin fighting.
TJ Combo: Whatchu got, huh? Huh? HUH?
TJ goes in for a few punches, Balrog blocking. The Crazy Buffalo goes in for a few himself, but they go over Combo. TJ then goes to his opposite side, landing a few blows on him. Balrog goes in for a left hook, but TJ dodges before punching him in the chest.
They both go in for a hook, but TJ's lands into Balrog's chest first, cancelling his attack. Balrog continues attempting to go in for punches, but TJ simply dodges them and cancels with his own quick attacks. TJ dashes out before going back in, but Balrog uses his gloves to grab him by the shoulder, headbutts him, steps on his foot, and punches him to the ground. The crowd boos this dirty attack.
Announcer: A dirty move for Balrog.
The referee immediately tries to step in, only for Balrog to beat him down.
Announcer: Woah! That's not appropriate!
Balrog rips off his coat and tosses it outside of the ring as TJ regains his footing.
Balrog: Come on tiny. Just you and me!
TJ rubs the pavement off his nose.
TJ Combo: Bring it on, asshole!
Balrog attempts a Dash Straight forward while TJ tumbles and grabs Balrog, slams him into the ground with a Shoot Toss, and knocks him down from the air using a Tremor punch. He tries punching again, but Balrog uses a focus attack to counter it and juggles TJ into an aerial combo with the Crazy Buffalo technique. He attempts to finish Combo off with a KKB, but the boxer uses the infamous...
KI Announcer: C-C-C-COMBO BREAKER!
and knocks Balrog backward.
Announcer: They won't stop! How long will this go!?
TJ launches a Superman punch forward and lands a couple of blows. Balrog tries landing heavy hits, but TJ keeps his distance and evades the attacks to land his own. Both prepare to land a heavy punch, but Balrog gets the upper hand by sweeping TJ off of his feet and landing a Buffalo Uppercut. He tries stomping on TJ, but Combo avoids it and gets up.
The two boxers counter and clash with their gloves, causing the ring to start crumbling apart from their sheer power. They then use their most powerful dash attacks, but Balrog fakes TJ out to avoid his punch. Taking advantage of his vulnerability, Balrog lands some blows before unleashing his Gigaton Blow.
Balrog: You won't hear the full ten count! Why don't you go to hell!?
The cameras flash as TJ falls to the ground.
Announcer: I can't believe it! Combo's down! This could be over...
Balrog slowly approaches his opponent ready to end the fight, but TJ gets on his knees and angrily pounds the ground.
TJ Combo: I ain't done!
TJ gets up and enters his Instinct Mode, Glory Days, confusing his opponent.
Balrog: Wait, what?
Balrog tries throwing another KKB with TJ easily avoiding it.
Announcer: TJ's back up with his Last Breath!
TJ's intense speed starts overwhelming his opponent. When Balrog tries throwing a punch forward, TJ dodges it and punches Balrog's arm so hard it snaps in two. The Street Fighter starts limping backwards in pain, but TJ doesn't let him walk it off as he delivers a brutal beatdown to the Shadaloo boxer. TJ ends the match with a fully charged Vortex Punch, which decapitates Balrog and sends his head flying into the air.
Announcer: Holy Jumping Giblets! TJ Combo takes the title in an absolutely brutal fashion!
TJ walks away victorious as Balrog's limp body falls to the ground. The cameraman tilts his view upwards only to have Balrog's disembodied head fall right on top of the lens and crack the screen.
Announcer: Excuse me. I gotta hurl.
(*Cues: Yo Check This Out - Killer Instinct again*)
Boomstick: Whoa-ho! It's just like Rock 'em-Sock'em Robots! Only, I don't think his head's getting reattached...
Wiz: This was an extremely close bout, in fact, both fighters were evenly matched in a lot of unexpected ways.
Boomstick: Being a slugger, Balrog was obviously used to having the strength advantage, but TJ actually had him matched.
Wiz: Recall how Balrog killed an elephant, who's skull could withstand 10,000 pounds of force, or 44,482 newtons. In comparison, TJ's Vortex Punch is capable of hitting opponents at a minimum of 13.4 feet into the air, even if they weigh as much as 550 pounds, like Fulgore. To launch something that heavy with just a punch, would require 44,820 newtons of force.
(*Cues: The End - Killer Instinct (2013)*)
Boomstick: Dang, that's close, and that's not even TJ's strongest punch. Even their ability to take hits were pretty similar, like Balrog falling off the cliff, or TJ jumping out of the Ultratech skyscraper, both of which were at similar heights.
Wiz: Luckily for TJ, analyzing real life boxing trends revealed his inherent advantage over Balrog, the popular triangle theory of boxing, also called the "Rock-Paper-Scissors" theory, claims that sluggers, such as Balrog, naturally struggle against Out-Boxers like TJ.
Boomstick: Yeah, slugger punches are really strong, but they're predictable, and require more energy, so a good Out-Boxer could just keep his distance, capitalizing on mistakes, and then wear the slugger down over time until the opportune chance for a knockout blow.
Wiz: Obviously, it's called a theory for a reason, every boxer is different, however, when applied at a very fundamental level, the triangle theory holds weight.
Wiz: And don't forget, TJ kept a heavyweight title for over twenty years, despite how closely matched their power and durability were, TJ's speed, tactics, and experience won the match by permanent knockout.
Boomstick: You could say TJ had the instinct for this fight, and it was a killer.
Wiz: The winner is TJ Combo.
TJ Combo: Yeah!
- This episode features a number of firsts:
- This is the first Death Battle to be a boxing match.
- This is the first episode featuring a Street Fighter character fighting against a Killer Instinct character.
- This is the first episode featuring two African American characters.
- This is the first 3D animated 'Fighting Game' themed DEATH BATTLE!.
- This is the first 'Fighting Game' themed DEATH BATTLE! with voice actors.
- Oddly, this can be considered the first Death Battle to technically have 2 different kinds of "KO's": The traditional Death Battle type involving death at the end and the typical one normally seen in boxing, albeit with the Death Battle spin to it.
- This is technically the first episode of Death Battle to feature both a 2D sprite animation and a 3D animation as Torrian animated the actual fight and Luis Cruz animated the part where TJ Combo is shown as a janitor.
- This is the 2nd episode in DEATH BATTLE to have fighters in a fighting arena (the 1st episode was Hercule Satan VS Dan Hibiki).
- This is the tenth episode in which a hero fights a villain, with the previous nine being Boba Fett VS Samus Aran, Yoshi VS Riptor, Starscream VS Rainbow Dash, Kirby VS Majin Buu, Boba Fett VS Samus Aran Remastered, Iron Man VS Lex Luthor, Meta VS Carolina, Hulk VS Doomsday and Metal Sonic VS Zero.
- This is also the 12th episode in which a protagonist fights an antagonist, with the previous 11 being Boba Fett VS Samus Aran, Yoshi VS Riptor, Starscream VS Rainbow Dash, Kirby VS Majin Buu, Boba Fett VS Samus Aran Remastered, Guts VS Nightmare, Iron Man VS Lex Luthor, Joker VS Sweet Tooth, Meta VS Carolina, Hulk VS Doomsday and Metal Sonic VS Zero.
- This is also the 40th rivalry episode in the series.
- According to the commentary, the reason why TJ punching Fulgore 13 feet into the air was used as his main strength feat was because the research team for this episode tried to calculate punches where TJ punched someone off-screen. To accomplish this, they measured the acceleration based on how far TJ's opponent goes between two frames but the end result ended up being approximately 700 feet into the air which SA deemed too ludicrous even for TJ Combo. This is also the reason why Boomstick claims the feat used is not his strongest feat of strength.
- According to the commentary, Nick wrote a joke ending for this fight.
- This is the 2nd Death Battle where the results used Killer Instinct's The End soundtrack. The 1st one was Sub-Zero VS Glacius.