UNTOLD: Malice at the Palace Episode Review - Reel Advice Movie Reviews

Saturday, August 14, 2021

UNTOLD: Malice at the Palace Episode Review


It's been almost two decades since "Malice at the Palace" happened and any fan of the NBA even now would probably know about it in some shape or form. "Untold: Malice at the Palace" uncovered certain aspects that were kept from the public by the NBA and the players themselves. Providing a more nuanced take on a fight that shows how dangerous prejudices, media, mental health, and a set of unfortunate events can lead to ruin for those who are involved.
It's early in the 2004 NBA regular season and the reigning champions Detroit Pistons are losing to the Indiana Pacers by a mile. As the game is about to end, a hard foul by Ron Artest to Ben Wallace causes mayhem that goes beyond the court and into the stands. As players and fans fight each other at the Palace - the homecourt of the Detroit Pistons - prejudices and controversy ensues.   
We still remember "Malice at the Palace" like it happened yesterday. And to this day, seeing footage of the chaos still makes us cringe and unsettled. But I remember distinctly hating Ron Artest, Jermaine O'Neal, and Stephen Jackson for instigating the crowd - they never should have crossed the line. This was how my high school mind processed the events that happened, mostly blaming the Pacers. Admittedly this was a very limited view and this is what "Untold: Malice at the Palace" tries to correct or expand on. In an era of NBA where the league now favors the players over the fans, this episode not only provided a stark contrast on the event itself but also on how the league has changed its mindset through the years for the better. Undeniably, in content alone, "Untold: Malice at the Palace" was already a winner. This episode brought a lot of new and interesting insights and perspectives that highlights the bad judgements of the league, of the media and fans back in 2004 . 
Admittedly, the episode wasn't perfect. The first half was definitely rough and slow as it sets up the context of the brawl but things significantly improved in its second half. It certainly hit us on an emotional level that we didn't expect at all as the players revealed the challenges they had to face on a physical and mental level. The only real issue we had with this episode was its one-sided approach. It was mostly the Pacers side that was taken into account with the Pistons' take being relegated to the bench. We would have loved to see how Ben Wallace, Rasheed Wallace or even Coach Larry Brown processed the same events but alas there was barely any info outside the key Pistons fans that got involved in the brawl. Overall, "Untold: Malice at the Palace" is a very great start to the series. It brought a lot of new information and facts to one of the most controversial fights in sports history. We're looking forward to the other episodes now for sure.
Rating: 4 reels






Why you should watch it:
- brings a lot of interesting and new insights into the Malice at the Palace 

Why you shouldn't watch it:
- kinda missing the side of the Detroit Pistons

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