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At home with the Gypsy King and Queen (and their kids)

Undated Handout Photo from At Home With The Furys. Pictured: Tyson Fury and Tommy Fury. See PA Feature SHOWBIZ TV Furys. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature SHOWBIZ TV Furys.
Undated Handout Photo from At Home With The Furys. Pictured: Tyson Fury and Tommy Fury. See PA Feature SHOWBIZ TV Furys. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature SHOWBIZ TV Furys. Undated Handout Photo from At Home With The Furys. Pictured: Tyson Fury and Tommy Fury. See PA Feature SHOWBIZ TV Furys. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature SHOWBIZ TV Furys.

The Tyson Fury most of us know is the man in the boxing ring, arms raised triumphantly, gloves on, all sweat-sheen and rippling muscles, a determined grimace plastered on his face. His trademark black shorts read Gypsy King on the gold waistband. Watching tight-lipped on the sidelines is his Gypsy Queen and wife, Paris.

His new Netflix series At Home With The Furys offers us another perspective on the world heavyweight champion. We see him stripped of ring and gloves, in vastly different settings: namely a spacious mansion in the seaside town of Morecambe, Lancashire, surrounded by six kids (a seventh on the way), Paris, and a motley crew of family members (his dad, John, lives in a gypsy caravan on the land and his younger brother Tommy and partner Molly-Mae Hague, who got together on Love Island, make appearances).

His opening line embodies the pulse of the series: “I’ve gone from topping the bill at Wembley, [in front of] 94,000, to picking up dog s*** on a run.”

Ostensibly, the series is about Fury, now 34, navigating the relatively uncharted waters of retirement. Still, why now? “I retired after the Dillian Whyte fight, 2022, and I had a lot of spare time on my hands,” he relates. “And I thought, you know what, I’m not doing anything else. This is gonna be fantastic to keep my mind occupied.”

He has since, for those not in the know, reneged on retirement. “I’ve been retired and come back more times than a boomerang,” he chuckles.

“With boxing, it’s a very dangerous sport if you allow it to get the better of you,” he continues in his rich Mancunian accent. “I’ve been taking punches to the head and body for over 20 years. I’ve achieved everything. I’ve made a ton of money. I’ve achieved all the bouts there is to win. I’ve done more than I ever thought was possible in the sports game. I don’t really have anything else to prove.”

That’s why he walked out, he says, following his history-making Wembley appearance – which he notes outsold Ed Sheeran and Adele. “I walked away undefeated, on top of the world, all brains and a bank full of cash. It’s always good to retire on top and that’s why I walked away.”

But he’s back. Yet again. He puts it down to getting sick of getting under Paris’s feet and having nothing to do all day bar waiting for the kids to return from school “like Forrest Gump”.

Paris interjects, uncovering the series’ undercurrent: “It wasn’t just that though, you could see a mile off that your mental health was dipping because you didn’t have a focus, you didn’t have a purpose.”

Beneath the deluge of boxing wins, world titles, cash and cars, Fury struggles. It’s a couple of years since he first opened up about his mental health – he has bipolar disorder, ADHD and depression. The series sees him and Paris grappling with this in real time, openly and honestly discussing how it impacts their life.

“I’m always talking about the mental health struggle,” Tyson says. “I want it to be very evident in this show that even me, world heavyweight champion, as tough as I am, can be brought down to my knees with mental health on a daily basis. I think the more I talk about it, the more people can be helped around the world or maybe save a life or whatever. So yeah, that’s why we did it.”

The “we” is elucidating. Paris and Tyson have been together since meeting at school aged 15. When asked where he’d be without her, Tyson simply answers: “I’d be dead probably.”

“I think for every sufferer there’s somebody behind them trying to help them,” says Paris, 33. “And sometimes it’s tiring, and sometimes it’s annoying – even to have to use that word. But for us, once Tyson was diagnosed, I think it really helped because you started to realise there’s a reason this person is pushing you away… It’s not a personal vendetta against me as a partner. And I think it’s good for people to see this and understand this is what we do. This is how we roll with Tyson’s mental health issues.”

The deal they struck with Netflix was “no-holds barred”. There were no off-limit rooms. No scripted scenes. (Tyson refused to repeat himself: “That was a one-line-wonder and I can’t repeat something that’s off-the-cuff”.) The camera crew woke them up every morning ringing the doorbell and were still around when they put the kids to bed. The result is honest, unaffected; a raw authenticity both touching and engaging to watch.

Tyson is upfront about the downsides of fame. They’ll probably have to move again after the series, he says, like they did after their ITV doc: “I had to move because loads of people kept turning up to the house, ringing the intercom at four in the morning.”

“What people don’t understand is being famous sucks,” he continues. “It’s not a pleasurable thing to be absolutely tortured when you go to the shop for a Greggs sandwich. It’s not great to be bombarded when you’re trying to get a pair of trainers out of a sports shop. It’s not when you’re going out with your family on a day out and you don’t get any time and you just got people hanging all over you. Or that you’re out with your wife on a date night and don’t want to speak to a million people.”

“The problem with us is we still believe we’re normal,” Paris interjects. “We still want to believe that we’re just Tyson and Paris.”

“Yeah, everyday people,” says Tyson. “We’re living in Morecambe. We’re not fancy people. We’re just doing normal stuff, go to normal places, and we’ve only been shopping in Aldi this morning. Everyone’s like, ‘What are you doing in Aldi?’ and I’m like, ‘Well, it’s a shop that sells food’.”

Therein lies the dichotomy. Behind all the glitz, there is something normal about the Furys. They go camping. Tyson takes the kids to the seafront. He tenderly describes his home town, Morecambe, as the most beautiful place in the world. The pair are down-to-earth; grounded in their humble upbringings and traveller roots.

And yet.

“There’s many other reality TV shows, but there’s only one Tyson Fury and there will only ever be one Tyson Fury and that’s a fact,” Tyson says.

“One crazy, bald, fat man that nobody can ever compete with. There’s only one person like that. And then there’s Paris and all the six kids, the dog… TV gold. I just don’t think anything can compete with it. And we’ll find out anyway because if it doesn’t go to number one on Netflix I’ll be absolutely boiling.”

At Home With The Furys lands on Netflix on Wednesday, August 16.