Fight Like a Handsome Man – Inside the Male Model Fight Club

It’s called Friday Night Throwdown, but most know it as the male model fight club, an unlicensed underground event that puts pretty boys in the ring with street fighters and real boxers. As you can imagine, models almost never win.

“I think it’s hilarious that the whole point of their being is to make money off what they look like, yet they’ll come throw down for a couple of hundred bucks,” one of the Friday Night Throwdown organizers says about the pretty boys who sign up to get their asses kicked for around $150. But for the people doing the fighting in the ring, the event is no joke. “I definitely tell everybody, ‘This is no bullshit. You’re about to get in front of 800 people. Get ready—and if you don’t, it’s still going to be entertaining for you to get your ass beat,’” the organizer says. And most of the models involved in this underground phenomenon take that advice very seriously. They train hard, and the fights have gotten more intense during the last two years that Friday Night Throwdown has been taking place in various downtown New York warehouses. It’s in the models’ financial interest to put up a good fight, because if the crowd likes them, they might get invited back and paid double or triple what they earned the first time. Still, despite their best efforts, only one male model has actually won a fight against a hardened fighter.

Photo: Photo Thug Life

“The models that are doing this are basically the wild models,” says a Throwdown fighter, who’s also a model himself. “Everyone’s loving you, taking pictures of you. You walk around the streets of New York, and people stop you, like, ‘Yo, you’re the kid from fight night, right?’” Some of them don’t actually need the extra money, they just want to prove that despite their being paid just for good looks, they can also throw and take punches. But, truth be told, no super models of the fashion world have ever taken part in the crazy event. Most are just guys who book campaigns erratically, and don’t really rely on their modelling careers to pay the bills. Still, an event organizer says one of the most popular male models around right now came to watch the action one night and said that although he can’t risk injuring himself right now, he would love to fight at one point. “But when we find the right time and I stop modeling for a little while,” he explained, “I want to fight. I’d love to do this.”

Photo: Photo Thug Life

The only model who has ever won a fight in Friday Night Throwdown is 20-year-old “Rockstar” Charlie. He has won all of his previous five fights in the circuit, but it’s worth mentioning he has eight years of boxing training under his belt, and he only took up modeling after he got involved in the event. A contact from Throwdown introduced him to an agent at Ford, another booked him for a show with Bijules, and it looks like his career is slowly picking up. Still he’s not worried about fighting injuries, on the contrary. “I wouldn’t mind if my face looked more like a boxer’s. It would give me some more character. I’m just like, ‘Come on, break my nose!’” he says.

Photo: Photo Thug Life

It might sound silly, but this is a real fight club. Broken noses, black eyes and swollen faces are very common during Friday Night Throwdown events, but the models don’t mind, they’re finally being taken seriously as men. In fact, the fighting gets so violent that venue owners often threaten to call the cops, in fear they might be held accountable should something happen to one of the fighters.


If you’re curious about when and where the next Throwdown will take place, just keep an ear to the streets, or better yet keep an eye on Facebook. “Even the underground illegal scene is deep addicted to that Facebook shit,” an event goer told Vice Magazine.

Source: NY Mag