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    That Time Backstreet Boy A.J. McLean Was On "GUTS"

    D-d-do-do you have 'em? GUTS! Let's see whether A.J. did.

    Our story begins on a hopeful day in 1992...

    Our hero, a young A.J. McLean, is summoned to compete against other young warriors on the action sports television show, GUTS. Entering the arena after some conspicuous stretching and dressed in a noble cerulean blue, the future boyband star becomes henceforth known as A.J. "Mean" McLean.

    Success! Our hero excels in the first event, Aerial Slam Dunk.

    He takes first place, scoring five baskets. In his post-game interview, the strapping sportsman offers these strong words of athletic insight: "It's high. Believe me, oh it's amazing, man. Jeez! It's just, bounce, up — uh, it's so confusing! When you get up there you don't know where you are when you come down!"

    A.J. takes first place after Aerial Slam Dunk

    A warrior's biography...

    A.J. is introduced as a "14-year-old cartoonist" who, when he wants to "put his money where his mouth is," is "performing dinner theater." He also "wants to patent a new basketball."

    The downfall begins...

    A contestant in purple — Jamie "The Jackal" Mendelsohn — takes the lead in the following two events. In the Basic Training obstacle course, A.J. trips up in the elastic jungle. Next, in the White Water pool event, "The Jackal" once again usurps young McLean, beating his time by over 20 seconds.

    The scores after Basic Training.

    The scores after the white water rafting event.

    And now for The Longest Yard, the last event before the final...

    Contestants must make the longest jump, placing both feet in the sand. A.J. makes a distance of 17'1, while Jamie once again takes the lead with a jump of 17'4. Rats!

    The leaderboard after The Longest Yard.

    And now for the final challenge...

    A.J. takes on the treacherous "Aggro Crag," dodging "avalanches" of foam rocks, "snow storms" of glitter, and fog. "The Jackal" rises once again, being the first to reach the top — mere seconds before A.J.

    The final scores :(

    And so, our young warrior had lost this battle, taking second place.

    But he did not despair, for greater things were in his future: goatees, hoop earrings, and sweet harmonies.

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