Mike Tyson takes comedy to TV

Mike Tyson is back in the news. Earlier this week, Mike Tyson Mysteries premiered on Adult Swim. The animated show stars Tyson as himself along with an adopted Asian daughter (Rachael Ramras), an alcoholic (Norm McDonald) who was turned into a pigeon by his ex-wife, and the ghost of the Marquess of Queensberry (Jim Rash).

The gang solves mysteries a la Scooby Doo and Johnny Quest, though following in the vein of other Adult Swim shows it’s not meant for children. Despite lacking a succinct plot, the show makes occasional intellectual references to people such as David Foster Wallace and John Updike. Viewers are left to wonder if the show is based on Tyson’s real transformation from controversial athlete to pop culture icon or just a financial play from an athlete who fell into bankruptcy after squandering career earnings of over $400 million.

(Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports)
(Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports)

Tyson’s post-boxing career has been a roller coaster with periods of financial ruin, but he has found some success through acting. After a cameo in The Hangover, the Tyson documentary was released to critical acclaim and viewer approval. In 2012, Tyson starred in Spike Lee’s Broadway show Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth which received some critical praise. Tyson has even expanded into boxing promotion by co-founding Iron Mike Productions.

Tyson’s sense of humor has transformed him from a bankrupt villain to a comedian with financial stability. As Tyson’s character says in the pilot, “I’ll rely on my sense of humor.” It seems his humor may lead him to financial success.

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