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"People have to realize that 'Iron Mike' is just really dead and I'm doing something else now," says Mike Tyson in the opening episode of Being: Mike Tyson (on Fox tonight at 10pm). That 'something else' appears to be dominated by a 36-city US tour of his stage show Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth. That, and tackling various inner demons of course.

The first episode follows our Mike as he prepares for the opening night in Indianapolis, including the strangely moving sight of watching Mike prepare for the evening in the same manner he used to do before a heavyweight bout, with no little echo of the closing scene from Raging Bull.

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"I feel like I'm in a locker room because this is what a locker room to a fight looks like," he says. "It's the same thing, anticipating and waiting to perform."

We also join Tyson as he re-visits Plainfield Correctional Complex in Indianapolis where he served time for rape, including a reunion with his former prison warden.

The show inevitably appears to consist of equal parts car crash and uneasy redemption, but there's no denying the fascination that comes from watching Tyson's combination of brutality and child-like sensitivity up close, occasionally producing the odd moment of simple, honest and genuine insight: "Being in prison is the closest thing to being dead while you are alive because everything else stops."

 


Being: Mike Tyson, every Wednesday at 10pm on Fox

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