Former NBA star Dwyane Wade is at the helm of a new game show from TBS called The Cube. The competition, based on a program of the same name that aired in the U.K. from 2009 to 2015 (and was recently revived), will put challengers up against their own mental and physical barriers as they attempt to complete a series of challenges from the confines of a plexiglass cube.
The new game show premiered on the network in June 2021, and U.S. viewers are getting their first look at the challenges as the show is given new life. It's already easy to tell from the first few episodes that nothing in this competition is exactly easy — but has anyone managed to actually beat The Cube?
How does 'The Cube' work?
Contestants on The Cube complete all of their challenges inside a moderately-sized square box that is four meters on each side. There are seven different challenges the contestants have to beat that increase in difficulty as they progress, and they earn a monetary prize for every level they complete.
Like a cat, each contestant has nine lives. For every challenge they fail, they have to repeat it and lose a life. This continues until either the contestant completes all of the challenges or loses all nine lives.
The challenges aren't the same for every contestant and are chosen specifically for each new challenger, depending on their own personal skill set. They combine physical and mental challenges, and the premise of the show is that the confines of their "cube" make these tasks much harder to complete.
An average episode typically contains up to two different contestants' attempts at beating The Cube, depending on how the competitors perform.
Has anyone ever beaten 'The Cube'?
While you'll have to tune into the U.S. version as its first season premieres to see if anyone takes home the grand prize, there are very few winners across all international iterations of the game show.
For the original version of The Cube, seven people have advanced to the final round of the competition. At this point in the show, the contestants are given the option to either continue the game or walk away with the money they've already won up to that point (typically around £100,000).
Of these seven people, six have opted to walk away from the competition. The only person to compete in the final round (and win) on The Cube was Mo Farah, a British long-distance runner who won gold medals in both the 2012 and 2016 Olympic games. The athlete competed in a 2012 charity special and donated the grand prize of £250,000.
The Cube has other international editions of the game show, and across all of its iterations, only six people in total have won — including Mo.
The first grand prize winner was Vítor Costa who competed in the Portugal edition in 2010. Ukraine competitor Andriy Serko and Chinese contestant Chen Kun also took home the grand prize in 2012. Wu Jing won in China in 2013, and Hamad Al Yahmadi won in the Arab League in 2014.
Watch The Cube on TBS on Thursdays at 9 p.m. EST.