Based on the Japanese series called Sasuke, American Ninja Warrior has been appearing on American TV screen on channel G4 since 2009. NBC picked up the show during its fourth season in 2013. Since that time, only two contestants, Isaac Caldiero (season 7) and Drew Dreschsel (season 11) have completed all four stages of the course making them the official winners. All of the other seasons featured “the last ninja standing”, meaning the last contestant to beat out all of the others but didn’t complete stage four. Of all of stages, the fourth is the simplest concept – just climb a rope in 30 seconds of less. For the first few seasons the rope’s length was 50 feet. It was later extended to 65 feet in the fourth season and is currently at 75 feet.
Season 13 was the first to lower the age limit from 19 to 15 and so of the nearly 400 competitors who tried out for the challenge, 35 of them were in their teens. However, by Stage 2 of the competition, only 19 Ninjas remained with seven of them being teens. Then for Stage 3, only four were still playing: Kyle Soderman, Vance Walker, Austin Gray and Kaden Lebsack. Finally, it was 15-year-old Lebsack who beat out all of the rest and the only one to try his best for Stage 4 and winning $1 million dollars. Instead, he failed to reach the top within 30 seconds and walked away as the Last Ninja Standing and $100,000 for his troubles. Not too shabby. That will buy a lot of video games.
Main image: NBC
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