The Unreality of Reality TV: An Opus
Note: As someone who has worked on his fair share of Reality TV, I
figured I could help explain the process that goes into making those
sorts of shows)
(Second Author’s note: The third part in the editing pro-wrestling series is on hold until I obtain the hard drive.)
of the firm belief that reality TV is the new soap opera. It’s also the
new educational television. It’s also the new game show, geekshow, and
travel show. As the world grows and changes and new forms of media and
entertainment obsolesce older ones, it’s becoming readily apparent that
audiences crave “reality”. “Pawn Stars” may be about history, but it’s
also about three tough-guys in Las Vegas. “No Reservations With Anthony
Bourdain” may be a travel show, but it’s also about one tough S.O.B’s
love of cooking, boozing, culture, and fun. “Keeping Up With The
Kardashians” may be a vapid, banal, and ultimately pointless show, but
it’s about four very real women who have very real lives and make very
how real is “reality”? Are Kim Kardashian and Co. secretly reading a
script outline before heading to shop for clothes? Has Rick from Pawn
Stars been told what he’s going to pay for a Civil War musket? Is
Anthony Bourdain’s attitude a function of the production? Well, the
question is complicated.
And I know the answer.
much the same way pro wrestling becomes infinitely more fascinating
once you’re “in the know”, Reality TV becomes a triumph of editing,
cinematography, directing and perhaps most importantly, producing once
you understand the process. It’s really easy to film a bunch of people
doing things and call it a reality show. It’s incredibly difficult to
coordinate meetings, locations, camera crews, and audio people and still
give the audience the feeling that they’re a fly on the wall at a lunch
between Harvey Pekar and Anthony Bourdain.
what I hope will be a successful series of articles, I hope to educate,
entertain, and explain the process that takes place when it comes to
shooting a reality television show. I will hit on the history of the
genre, the various sub-genres, and ultimately tackle the question of
whether, by and large, the genre is “real” or “fake” (Spoiler: Somewhere
will do this using the knowledge afforded to me by my fancy pants degree
in Television Production, my experience working on a variety of reality
TV shows, and for flavor, relay to you the times I was on “Jerry
Springer” and “The Judge Pirro” show – and how those shows bend
“reality” for the purposes of good television.
couple of notes here: I can’t 100 percent guarantee the factual
accuracy of my claims and research. It’s mostly coming from wikipedia
sources, my own common sense, and things I’ve read or heard throughout
the course of my life – plus I’m writing this for fun on a niche
pro-wrestling blog. So feel free to yell at me if I claim a show was
“groundbreaking” when an obscure show in Germany did the format first,
that’s cool, but in general I’ll be writing this from the perspective
of the general consensus of American audiences. Sorry Canada.
But lets dive in.
America felt so inclined, they could blame reality TV on PBS. In 1973,
“An American Family” aired on the Public Broadcasting System, compiling
300 hours of footage into a single 12 episode season. Initially intended
as a “fly on the wall” (or Cinema Verite) look in at your typical
American suburban family, the Louds, the filmmakers actually ended up
capturing something a bit more compelling – namely an affair by the
patriarch of the Loud clan, and one of the Loud family’s sons coming out
as a homosexual (and became the first openly gay “character” on
television). Safe to say, this was some pretty spicy stuff. Due in part
to this unexpected drama, the show was a smash.
The press wasn’t as enamored. This article from “The New Yorker” features
a few particularly brutal highlights from the contemporary press’s
reaction to the show at the time, with charming insights like referring
to the gay son (Lance) as “camping and queening about like a pathetic
court jester, a Goya-esque emotional dwarf.”
Loud family weren’t pleased about how this whole thing turned out,
either. At the time, the Louds claimed the footage was unethically
edited to make their lives more compelling, to focus on the “drama” and
“negative” aspects of their lives at the expense of how things played
out in reality (sound familiar?).
editing is a staple of the documentary process, and is probably the
most important tool in turning hours of footage into a compelling
30-minute TV show. Take a look at this silly trailer I made for my family and friends (Yes I know about the typo).
Judging by the trailer you’d assume my life was filled with parties,
booze, kittens, marijuana, and bald-spots. While this is a trailer and
not an actual reality show, it’s safe to say that if you watched that
trailer and didn’t know me or my family, you’d assume we’re a bunch of
party animals. What you don’t see are the numerous weird looks I got
from following my friends and family around with the camera, and endless
amount of boring footage of me driving in my car or filming birds. To
keep things entertaining, you need to cut the fat – even if the finished
product is less than a true-to-life interpretation. Unfortunately it’s
the price of doing business.
as unfortunate – the aftermath for the Loud family wasn’t pretty. The
aforementioned Lance Loud eventually became addicted to Meth, and died
from HIV at the age of 50. It was filmed for a PBS special in 2001.
Whether or not being America’s first “Reality” TV family contributed to
the downfall of the Louds will never be answered. Was the scrutiny of
the media, and the camera, and the american public so much that it was
impossible for the family to ever be normal again? Who knows.
lets fast forward two decades when MTV green lights “The Real World” –
which took a similar approach to “An American Family” but replaced a
single American family with angsty young adults from all walks of life –
throwing them into a house with limited bedrooms and ample alcohol. It
debuted in 1993 and has thus far produced well over 500 episodes. It
covered a whole bunch of taboo topics including homophobia, racism, HIV,
homosexuality, domestic abuse, and how much coconut rum it takes to put
a person into a diabetic coma (lots).
the series initially started as a fascinating social-experiment, as the
show went on (and audience numbers waned) it morphed into a combative,
sexually charged, vulgar, and trashy ghost of what “The Real World” once
was. The hyper-charged “Docusoap” was born.
brings us to the Heisenberg effect, which more-or-less states that the
very act of observing something changes the outcome. Did the Loud family
change their actions or act differently because cameras were
documenting their every move? Did Lance Loud become addicted to the
fame, and when it was gone, replace that addiction with Meth and
unprotected gay sex? You can’t really say.
I can say with some authority is that the cast-mates on “The Real
World” (at least the newer seasons) are very obviously playing to the
camera, supercharging fights, partying, and their perceived “personas”
in an attempt to be the most engaging and outlandish personality in the
house. Controversy creates cash, after all.
Real World” ultimately begat “Road Rules” which was essentially “The
Real World” on wheels. It followed a buncha people in a giant winnebago
as they competed in challenges in an attempt to win a prize of some
sort. The shows would regularly cross over for the “Real World / Road
Rules Challenge” which unintentionally invented (or popularized) the
concept of a “Reality TV All Star” and the sub-genre “Reality
the “The Real World” and “Road Rules” helped pioneer the use of the
“confession cam” where the show’s “characters” would talk directly into
the camera about their situation, their roommates, and a variety of
other subjects. In fact it’s impossible to watch any reality TV show
these days and not see a confession cam. It is here that the line
between reality and Reality ® blurs.
confessional interviews are generally made to look like off-the-cuff
comments. Very often, however, there are producers encouraging the cast
to speak about a specific subject, person, or event in the household,
often times not-so-subtly suggesting ways a cast member can incite drama
or rage amongst his house-mates. These sorts of conversations between
producers and cast members are instrumental in creating “quality”
“reality” television for the masses.
“The Real World” and “An American Family” paved the way for the
sub-genre of reality TV that is largely responsible for the trashy
stigma associated with the format. From “The Real World” you can pull
out well over a dozen shows that have used a similar format, or opted to
follow a select group of people during their day-to-day lives. There is
no “Jersey Shore” without “The Real World”.
Reality TV is popular and ever-present for a few reasons. First of all
it’s far cheaper to produce than most forms of television entertainment –
a 26 week run of “The Real World” is likely shot in a little over a
month or two, where as a standard drama or sitcom takes 7-10 days to
shoot and edit a single episode in addition to months of pre-production.
Additionally there is a sense of fidelity that comes with watching
“real” people do outlandish things. It’s far easier to become engrossed
in the acts of a “real” person who jumped into a pool naked with two
bottles of tequila in her hands than it is to invest in the antics of
Ray Romano on a set with a canned laugh track.
to really understand what made Reality TV is what it is today, we need
to get tropical. “Survivor” debuted in the summer of 2000 and was an
immediate smash and cultural phenomenon. It averaged about 28 million
viewers per episode, with the finale pulling in just north of 50 million
eyeballs (well technically 100 million eyeballs). By comparison the
Super Bowl that year was watched by about 88 million folks.
Hell, it’s 12 years later and people still know who Richard Hatch is and I had to look up who played in the 2000 Superbowl.
“Survivor” reality TV was off to the races. American Idol, Big Brother,
The Bachelor Fear Factor, Dancing With The Stars, The Surreal Life, and
about six dozen other shows ushered in the era of competition reality
television. MTV launched “Making the Band” which combined the theatrics
of “The Real World” with the competition element of “American Idol”.
was a reality sub-genre for everyone. “Project Greenlight” appealed to
our inner filmmakers, “Last Comic Standing” for our funny bone, “The
Bachelor” for our inner romantic, “Joe Millionaire” for our cynic, and
so on. One part human drama, one part game show, it was easy to see why
these shows attracted massive audiences – some became invested in “the
game”, others in the people, and most, if I had to guess, watched these
shows as guilty pleasures. By and large, these shows are…okay.
“Dancing With The Stars” might as well be America’s personal USO show,
and after 12 years “Survivor” is so slick it’s impossible to *not* be
enthralled by the challenges, locations, characters, and competition.
Reality TV boomed like never before, chances and experiments were taken
regularly. A&E launched a show about the day-to-day lives of
Airport employees, as well as a show about the workers at a funeral
home, they also launched the delightfully trashy “Dog The Bounty Hunter”
in 2004. Discovery Channel chimed in with “American Chopper” in 2003,
and followed it up with the incredibly popular “Deadliest Catch” in
2005. The “workplace reality show” was coming into it’s own – and as the
2000s turned to the 2010’s, they’d come to dominate the reality TV
The “unreality” of “reality” – The tricks of the trade you won’t notice unless someone tells you about them, and the ethics behind them.
Also: the creation of “reality” – inside my production documents for my own reality TV show, “The Good Samaritan”
Fun read on The Rock from his days of playing football at the University of Miami. This reveals the originator of “candy ass” among other things.
I love releases like this.
I know some people think they’re stupid, but there are few things I dig more
than a wrestling documentary. I pop something like this on and time flies by. Having
said that, this documentary is a great one. If you read my reviews, you know
that I don’t really review the documentary, but I talk about my own personal
experiences regarding the subject.
The Razor’s Edge. That was the first finisher I
ever fell in love with. It was my go-to when people would say wrestling was
fake. “What? Fake? No way. You COULD NOT fake The Razor’s Edge! That would
hurt!” Beyond that, one of the joys when you’re a kid and a wrestling fan
is when you and your friends or brothers try the moves on each other. I have
countless memories of us watching our tapes and pausing them to figure out how
to get the Sharpshooter right. Then, when you’d lock it in, the recipient would
scream and tap out, but you’d always hold it a bit longer just because of how
cool you felt. I’ve been put in them all, and I can say without a doubt that
the Ankle Lock hurts the most. When I first had it put on me, I ripped the door
off a cabinet as I was thrashing about. I grew up with friends who were all
athletes, including a few wrestlers. Well, as friends do, there are always a
few bouts of wrestling. One of them was ranked here in Washington in wrestling,
and was so mad that I made him tap out he got directly up and punched me in the
face. Good times.
The King of all Finishers, for me at least, was
the Stone Cold Stunner/Diamond Cutter. I was absolutely obsessed with this move
growing up and would constantly try to put people in the move. I tell you, it’s
really not a move that’s very effective unless you catch someone off balance,
then you can dish out some pain.
I’ve broken three beds in my life time due to
wrestling moves. The first one was due to me powerbombing my brother on it too
much. The second was because my friend told me it was OK if I gave his bed a 5
Star Frog Splash. He was pretty mad afterwards that his bed lost that fight.
The third was the result of a Macho elbow. Of course, that was a bed that
belonged to my friend and he swore up and down that it was a tank, and wouldn’t
I do have a few beefs with the listing. First off,
where’s The Scorpion Death Drop? Back in the day, that move was DEATH. If Sting
hit someone with that, it was game over, and you could get a 30 count if you so
desired. I also thought it was stupid that his Scorpion Death Lock and
Sharpshooter were both on the list. It’s the same exact move. I was really
pissed to see the Diamond Cutter so far down the list. That move was over on its
own. There are countless YouTube videos you can find that are compilations of
all the awesome ways DDP hit the Cutter. It was always cool to see how DDP
would catch the guy this week.
Before we get to disc 2, here’s the list:50. JBL – Clothesline
49. Vader – Vader Bomb
48. Dusty Rhodes – Bionic Elbow
47. Million Dollar Man – Million Dollar Dream
46. Kerry Von Erich – Iron Claw
45. Ravishing Rick Rude – Rude Awakening
44. Lex Luger – Torture Rack
43. Dudley Boyz – 3-D
42. Bam Bam Bigelow – Moonsault
41. DDP – Diamond Cutter
40. Mankind – Mandible Claw / Socko
39. Honky Tonk Man – Shake Rattle and Roll
38. Yokozuna – Bonzai Drop
37. Flash Funk – 450 Splash
36. Sting – Scorpion Lock
35. Lita – Moonsault
34. Kevin Nash – Jack-knife
33. Jerry The King Lawler – Piledriver
32. RVD – Five-Star Frog Splash
31. Big Show – Chokeslam
30. CM Punk – GTS
29. Brock Lesnar – F-5
28. Bob Backlund – Chicken Wing
27. Batista – Batista Bomb
26. Mr. Perfect – Perfect Plex
25. Kurt Angle – Ankle Lock
24. Chris Jericho – Lion Tamer / Walls of Jericho
23. Edge – Spear
22. Iron Sheik – Camel Clutch
21. John Cena – Attitude Adjustment
20. Scott Hall – Razors Edge
19. Goldberg – Jackhammer
18. Rey Mysterio – 6-1-9
17. Road Warriors – Doomsday Device
16. Bruno Sammartino – Bearhug
15. Sgt. Slaughter – Cobra Clutch
14. Jeff Hardy – Swanton Bomb
13. Eddie Guerrero – Frog Splash
12. Macho Man Randy Savage – Elbow off Top Rope
11. Randy Orton – RKO
10. Bret Hitman Hart – Sharpshooter
9. Jimmy Superfly Snuka – Superfly Splash
8. Nature Boy Ric Flair – Figure Four Leg Lock
7. Hulk Hogan – Leg Drop
6. Shawn Michaels – Sweet Chin Music
5. Jake The Snake Roberts – DDT
4. The Rock – Rock Bottom / Peoples Elbow
3. Triple H – Pedigree
2. Undertaker – Tombstone Piledriver
1. Stone Cold Steve Austin – Stunner
SGT Slaughter demos the Cobra Clutch.
As a kid, I always thought it was weird that a G.I.
Joe had his move named after Cobra. I also thought the people who drew
Slaughter’s character in the World of G.I. Joe were rather generous. The
person that Slaughter is demonstrating the move on is apparently named Tony
Anthony. Or Tony Tony. As Slaughter details the move, he clearly shows
how the Clutch and The Million Dollar Dream are the exact same thing. Slaughter
of course won’t let up when the kid starts to tap. This was much better
than a match, I’ll say that much.
Rick Rude vs Jack Roberts – DDT vs. Rude Awakening
Match – Madison Square Garden – October 24, 1988
Rude does deserve his own 2-disc set. He had a
perfect gimmick. I miss the old-school MSG entrance of the face. It always
started some ways back behind the curtain. Cheryl Roberts is actually
pretty attractive, looking like Tawny Kitaen’s sister. Funny moment when Rick
Rude is in a wrist lick, we get a nice shot of his back, which looks
like all the stars in the sky because of his steroid use. Some guys get
side-effects worse than others. Later, when Rude has Roberts in a
sleeper, Jake digs his nails into Rude’s back and digs downward. I imagine Jake
was digging puss out of his fingernails for weeks. A decent match that’s
nothing extraordinary, and just about what you’d expect.
Jake hits the DDT for the pin at 13:02 | ***
Mr. Perfect [C] vs. Kerry Von Erich –
Intercontinental Championship – Dayton, OH – January 13th, 1991
I understand putting this match in here, since
they’re both on the countdown, but c’mon. Mr. Perfect is one of the best sellers
of all time. I mean, it’s almost Shawn Michaels-esque in its goofiness, but
it’s Perfect. Oh snaps! We’re about to see a Perfectplex! However, Kerry
kicks out. Earlier, he had Perfect up against the pole outside, and went for
the Tornado Punch. Perfect ducked, and Von Erich decked the post, which would
shatter the absolute shit out of his hand and hurt like hell. Then again, that
would defeat the purpose of putting somas on your cereal, wouldn’t it? We end up getting a DQ, and I’m not sure why. I
think it’s because Kerry had Perfect in the dumbest move ever, The Carrey Claw,
and Perfect pulled the ref into the both of them. Match was alright for
what it was. I still feel bad for Kerry.
Ref calls for the DQ at 8:30 | **1/2
Bob Backlund vs. Bret Hart [C} – WWE Championship
– Superstars – July 30th, 1994
Honestly, the crazy Backlund deal is pretty
ingenious. Being that I’ve never seen a Backlund match, he’s one hell of a
wrestler. Tons of really interesting near-falls at the beginning, as
Backlund shows this won’t be easy. I’ve never really seen a match like this.
It’s probably the most technically-sound bout I’ve ever seen, it’s
fantastic. I mean, wow. If you haven’t seen it, you really need to. Especially
since Backlund was the most white bread babyface of all time. I’d like
to see the whole angle on a DVD. Really interesting match, that’s the best way
to explain it. You have to love how at the end, Backlund just snaps. I
can only imagine how crazy this was to older fans watching at the time. Since I
only started watching in 1995, I only know the crazy, head-shaved, suit-wearing
Bret Hits an inside cradle for the pin at 14:27 |
Hall & Nash [C] vs. The Giant – WCW Tag-Team
Championship – Superbrawl, February 23rd, 1997
Dusty of course is already in the throes of
brilliance. Hall & Syxx are wearing shirts that say ‘Aztecas’ and Dusty
says “You see what their shirts say, ‘Alcatraz’….does that say
Alcatraz?” “No, it doesn’t” “Ah…I was just testing you!
Ya’ll was looking over there!” Man, Dusty is awesome on commentary. Man alive, it’s absolutely
night and day between Big Show of late 90s, and today. He’s doing dropkicks,
moving quickly, it’s incredible. Nice botch where The Giant is hanging on the
middle rope and Syxx does a spin kick towards his head, but misses it by a
mile. Thankfully, Tony doesn’t try and convince us of The Giant’s second,
invisible head that rests behind his first, visible head. Soon after, Nash hits
the powerbomb and it’s damn impressive looking. Luger shows up, in
street clothes and cast. He tags in to rack Nash, and win himself and The Giant
the belts. Of course, the next night on Nitro, they had to give the
belts back due to Luger not being cleared. See, this is a perfect example of
everything that did and didn’t work with the nWo. This match is fine, I enjoyed
it. There were no slow spots, the drama was there, and you were wondering if
The Giant could take both of ’em. Then at the last minute, Luger shows
up to make the save for the good-guys. But then, it’s all reversed, like
nothing happened. Once? Sure, that’s acceptable, but this is the SECOND
time in two months they pulled some BS like this. Still, for just the match,
Luger racks Nash for the win at 9:04 | ***
Mankind vs. Jerry “The King” Lawler – King of the
Ring – June 8th, 1997
It’s a shame the match-up from later, HHH vs.
Mankind isn’t on here. That’s one hell of a match. Another shame is that kids
these days just see the kindly, smiling King, because he really was a
fantastic heel in the 90s. One of the best cowardly heels ever, that’s for
sure. As for the match, this just never picked up. Lawler just beat the
hell out of Mick for the entire match before he fell to the claw.
Mick clamps the claw on Lawler for the win at
10:28 | **
RVD vs. 2 Cold Scorpio – Living Dangerously –
March 1st, 1998
I’m still unsure if RVD calls himself that because
of how much he looks like JCVD. The crowd is being pretty merciless, giving out
“this match sucks” and “boring” chants, during the
first 10 minutes. The match starts to pick back up, as Scorpio brings an innovative
display to his offense. He does one move that I’ve never seen before. Rob is
laying in the ring, Scorp goes out, looks like he’s about to do the Eddie
ploncha, but instead does a full 360 splash after whipping himself into
the ring. Incredible. I really wish I could say that the match continued
upward, but Scorp and RVD just have no chemistry. There’s a ton of botches, a
lot of stumbling and no real flow. I’ve seen a hell of a lot worse, but
I just expected so much more.
RVD hits a roll up at 27:10 | **3/4
Ric Flair [C] vs. DDP vs. Hulk Hogan vs. Sting w/
special guest ref Macho Man – WCW Championship – Spring Stampede – April 11th,
Geez, look at all that star power in there. This
is basically their version of the 6 man HiAC from 2000. After the match gets
going, Hogan is taken to the back because of a knee injury. I HATE stuff
like that, because isn’t that the point? Isn’t said wrestler trying to hurt another
said wrestler in order to make him submit? Moving along. Awesome moment
where Flair has Sting in a sleeper, then DDP had Flair in a sleeper, as Sting
drops down, causing a double jaw-breaker, getting Macho so excited that he does
a spinning finger-twirl. Seriously, I can’t see any reason for Macho Man to not
always be the champion of any company he was working for. For no reason at all,
he drops an elbow on Flair while he had Sting in the figure-four. No
complaints. A lot of people complained about DDP winning the match, but
I don’t see the big deal. DDP works his ass off, has great matches and feuds
with everyone, and I think he deserved it. Of course, if there was ever
a time for him, it was probably in 1997 or so, but hindsight is 20/20. In the
end though, this match was clunky, and really didn’t pick up until the
end. The Hogan thing is still a mystery.
DDP hits Flair with the Diamond Cutter for the pin
and the title at 17:27 | ***
Chris Jericho & The Rock vs. Stone Cold &
Kurt Angle – Smackdown – November 15th, 2001
I think it’s no surprise when I say this is a hell
of a match. Angle and Stone Cold make for a great team, as they cut the ring in
half and keep Jericho constantly in need of a tag, doing their absolute
best to keep him from getting it. Would have been nice to get a real finish out
of this, but since it was Survivor Series in a few days, Alliance vs.
WWE, that wasn’t going to happen. I will say, however, it’s one hell of an
ending. Taker comes out to prevent Angle and Stone Cold from killing
Rocky, then Angle takes out Taker, Booker shows up, Jericho gives him the
Lionsault, only for RVD to show up and deliver a 5 star to Jericho,
which then allows Kane to arrive and chokeslam RVD, as Shane flies out of nowhere
and hits Kane with a chair, giving The Big Show a chance to get into the
ring and punch said chair into Shane’s face, allowing Kurt to give Show the
Angle Slam, which distracts him long enough to have Rock give him the
Rock Bottom just before Stone Cold drops him with a Stunner.
Match never really ends, as Stone Cold throws the
ref out and everyone runs in. About 10 minutes | ***3/4
Brock Lesnar & Eddie Guerrero vs. Bubba Ray
& RVD – Monday Night Raw – June, 3rd, 2002
Lesnar is a beast, plain and simple. He’s the type
of guy who should never be a face. Speaking of face, around the middle of the
match, Bubba aims to put a table in the ring, but Eddie baseball slides
it right into his grill. The match doesn’t go for long, but what we do get is
hard-hitting and fast, a perfectly fine addition to the set. Proof again
why Lesnar became champion so damn fast.
Eddie hits the Frogsplash on RVD for the pin at
9:00 | ***
Chris Jericho & Christian vs. Jeff Hardy &
Shawn Michaels – No-DQ – Monday Night Raw – February 17th, 2003
As Jeff comes down to the ring, JR says he’s tried
to get into Jeff’s head, but was never successful. Dixie Carter succeeded where
Jim Ross could not. Great spot where Jeff does his rail run and Jericho catches
him mid-air and turns it into a powerslam. Soon, they handcuff Shawn to the
bottom rope and proceed to annoy me by then beating on Jeff in the ring one
at a time while the other stands on the apron. It’s no DQ, c’mon, quit bein’ a
couple of fair bears! Eventually, Shawn gets the key and unlocks himself, but
waits at the ropes for Jeff to tag him. I know it’s petty, but things
like that annoy me. Really, this was more about progressing the storyline with
Jericho and HBK at the time, it didn’t need to be on this DVD
Jeff hits the Swanton & pins Jericho at 6:20 |
Triple H, Ric Flair, and Randy Orton vs. The
Dudley Boyz & Spike – Monday Night Raw – July 14th, 2003Spike is the first to go after an RKO. A little
later, Randy goes up for a 3D, and before he goes down he’s shaking his head no
while he screams it. I thought that was a nice touch. Hunter hits D-Von with a flag,
then places Randy on top of him for the pin. After a little while, Triple H
hits the Pedigree on Bubba, allowing Randy to get the pin once more. I’ll assume
this went down as some sort of punishment for misconduct backstage. The Dudleyz
probably brought their wives/girlfriends around, Randy made extreme sexual
advances towards them and the Dudleyz were yelled at for bringing their
wives/girlfriends backstage. An alright match, nothing special.
Randy gets the pin after HHH hits the Pedigree on
Bubba at 11:38 | **
Trish Status [C] vs. Lita – Women’s Championship –
Monday Night Raw – December 6th, 2004
I’ve never seen this match, so I’m looking forward
to it. Pretty nasty landing for Lita when she does a suicide dive to the
outside towards Trish. She lands mostly on her face, and flips forward.
Gnarly. Is there anything hotter than heel Trish? It’s rhetorical, there isn’t.
A shame this match didn’t get another 5 minutes or so, because it’s great, and
was really picking up a good amount of steam near the end. I think some
more near-falls, and Lita really struggling to put Trish down would have helped
the match out a lot. However, what we get is still damn good stuff, and
places it as one of the best women’s matches I’ve seen.
Lita hits the moonsault, nabbing the pin & the
title at 7:12 | ***
Randy Orton vs. HBK vs. JBL vs. Randy Orton –
Monday Night Raw – December 29th, 2008
Match gets off to a great start, especially when
it’s Jericho and HBK. Great series of moves as JBL attempts the Clothesline,
Jericho ducks it, hits the Codebreaker, goes to pin but Shawn makes the save.
Jericho puts JBL in the Walls, unknowing that Shawn got a tag, as he Superkicks
Chris right in the face and scores the pin. Randy is soon put down with Sweet
Chin Music as well. Now that Shawn and JBL are left, Bradshaw demands that
Shawn lay down for him. The angle with JBL hiring Shawn was great, it’s
just too bad that Bradshaw was God-awful in the ring, and that not even Shawn
Michaels could have a decent, non-hardcore match with him. Pretty awesome
ending with Shawn not being able to lay down for him, so he asks to be knocked
out. Again, great angle, terrible payoff. This match was fine, nothing
too spectacular, and would have probably been something great if it were on
JBL pins Shawn after the Clothesline From Hell at
18:04 | ***1/4
Undertaker [C] vs. Batista vs. Rey Mysterio vs. CM
Punk – World Heavyweight Championship – Bragging Rights – October 25th, 2009
It’s funny, every time Taker goes to slap on Hells
Gate, it’s like he doesn’t know how. Punk is like a scavenger in this match.
He’s constantly breaking up pins, and then running in to take other
people’s pin attempts, it’s great. I’ll say this, main events like this annoy
me. Well, I should say the time limits do. I understand that Taker is limited,
but there are three other guys in there who can go, so they should be allowed
to. It’s for a major title, with FOUR guys, it shouldn’t be lasting only 10
It’s an OK match, and I understand its inclusion.
Unfortunately, the match doesn’t have the awesome interview afterward where
Batista calmly says to Rey “I’m gonna rip your head off”
Undertaker hits the Tombstone on Batista at 9:55 |
Sheamus [C] vs. John Cena vs. Randy Orton vs.
Chris Jericho vs. Edge vs. Wade Barrett – WWE Championship – Six Pack Challenge
– Night of Champions – September 9th, 2010
Jericho is eliminated first rather quickly after
an RKO. Bummer. For some reason, the entire match shuts down over this. All the
wrestlers watch him walk to the back. It literally takes about three minutes of
the match to watch Jericho walk to the back. Did I miss something? Was
there a stipulation that the first person eliminated is killed with a pair of
nail clippers or something? Edge is second to be eliminated after he receives
an AA, with Cena soon following after Barrett hits a Wasteland. Nexus comes
down to help him out, but they can’t keep him from eating an RKO followed up by
a pin. Sheamus and Orton battle it out for a minute, but Orton gets the
RKO. They don’t do a lot of matches like this because they’re hard to pull off,
but with this much talent, it wasn’t a problem. Great match
Sheamus eats an RKO, a pin, and loses his title to
Orton at 21:23 | ****
Showcase Showdown: The documentary portion is
great. I know some people don’t care about watching these sorts of list
programs, but I love the hell out of ’em. They’re great to have on while I’m
working, or going to bed. The match selection is interesting, with some awesome
choices, but also leaves you wanting more. Some choices are only put in because
it’s two guys or more from the list fighting it out. However, with gems like
Bret vs. Backlund from Superstars, and Jericho and Rock vs. Stone Cold &
Angle, I’d say this set is definitely worth it. Honestly, if you wait another
month or two, you can cop it at Walmart for a cool $10. Worth it. 4 Head-Butts
out of 5.
For those curious, here’s what’s available on the blu-ray:
Triple H & Undertaker vs. Big Show & Edge
SmackDown – 6th February, 2009
Rey Mysterio, Jeff Hardy & The Great Khali vs. Edge, Dolph Ziggler & Chris Jericho
Raw – 22nd June, 2009
No Disqualification, 6-Man Tag Team Match
Mr. McMahon & D-Generation X (Shawn Michaels & Triple H) vs. Randy Orton & Legacy (Cody Rhodes & Ted DiBiase)
Raw – 24th August, 2009
Traditional Survivor Series Elimination Match
Team Mysterio (Rey Mysterio, Big Show, Chris Masters, Kofi Kingston, & MVP) vs. Team Alberto (Alberto
Del Rio, Cody Rhodes, Jack Swagger, Drew McIntyre, & Tyler Reks)
Survivor Series – 21st November, 2010
John Cena & Rey Mysterio vs. CM Punk & R-Truth
With Special Guest Referee Bret “Hitman” Hart
Raw – 23rd May, 2011
Thanks to my editor, Steven Ferrari. There was a time once when the President was kidnapped by ninjas. So, he and I were called upon to save him. We donned our sweatshirts & tank-tops, because we’re bad dudes.
For more Caliber than you can shake a stick at, head on over….
Str8 Gangster, No Chaser – Horror, wrestling, list articles, old 80’s stuff from when I was a kid, fighting ninjas on moving semi-trucks. Man Movie Encyclopedia articles. Remember when this website said he was going to kill you last? It lied.
WCW In 2000 – Read about the adventures of Tank Abbot, see how well the reboot of WCW is doing, and find out just how wrong you were when you thought having Double J as Champion was a stupid idea.
Man Movie Encyclopedia – Science has shown reading this book can cause a 2nd bout of puberty. Constant 5 star reviews, endorsed by Scott Keith & Maddox, as well as fellow BoD’ers. It’s only $2.99! That’s less than three dollars!
email: [email protected]
These are some things I’ve got in the wheel house, figured it best you guys decide what you’d like to see next. If there’s something I haven’t put in there you guys would like to see, just let me know in the comments. If it gets enough up-votes, then we’ll roll with that. Till then, thanks for the support, buckshots.
|What Would You Like Reviewed Next?|
|Ric Flair and The Four Horsemen DVD|
|Money in The Bank 2012|
|Spring Stampede 1999|
|pollcode.com free polls|
Was Slaughter brought back in 1990/1991 with the sole objective to lose the title to Hogan? Or was something else planned?
He was technically brought back to do the big traitor gimmick with a different slant where he just kind of hated America, but the Iraq war proved too tempting for Vince not to tie into and the character got altered into the version we saw on TV. The plan was always to shoot him to the World title and then job it to Hogan, absolutely.
Tenay addresses the audience about how the past five months in TNA has been the most enjoyable of his career. He puts over TNA but says how he does not like what Vince Russo stands for, stating how he will not sit by and let Russo take over TNA with his “Sports Entertainment.” West chimes in and was unaware of the animosity between the two. Good stuff from Tenay as his dislike for Russo was known and I believe during this show he was not following a script and speaking his own thoughts, which makes it seem believable. Too bad WWE doesn’t follow that formula anymore.
———- Forwarded message —— > Billy Gunn is now training wrestlers for WWE. I don't have words.
> – Joe
> Sent from my iPad 2! Imagine all the advice he can offer about being tall! "And here's how you throw a really shitty punch.". But let's face it, we knew this was coming as soon as he got back on TV again. Blame yourselves, America. Sent from my knockoff Android tablet!
The SmarK Rant for TNA Impact – 12.13.12 Just want to throw out a plug for my favorite bus-ride-killing podcast, The Place To Be (http://placetobe.podbean.com), this week featuring a look back at WWF Unforgiven ’98. Justin and Scott (not me) go over the show match-by-match, featuring their remembrances about it and whatever tidbits of info they can add as well. I listen, so should you! Taped from Orlando, FL Your hosts are Todd Keneley, Mike Tenay & Taz Bobby Roode is out to start, and he’s kind of confused as to why he’s not the World champion right now. Devon and the Aces come out and reveal that someone has “outbidded” him for their services. This brings out Jeff Hardy and James Storm, and they’re here to FIGHT. Devon is not and runs away. So in addition to the mystery of who Aces & Eights are and what they want, we now have a mystery of who hired them to take out Bobby Roode. Perhaps they should resolve one storyline before starting another. Madison Rayne v. Velvet Sky Velvet is now wearing a catsuit that’s like something out of a cosplay convention. Velvet gets a seated dropkick and tries a Pedigree, but Rayne escapes and yanks on the hair to take over. Velvet makes the comeback and gets a bulldog, having still not learned to run the ropes properly. That Pedigree finally hits and finishes at 3:06. Same old Velvet. ½* Meanwhile, Kurt Angle gives Brisco & Bischoff a peptalk and some energy shots. Those Five Hour Energy shots they’re constantly shilling taste like bottled DEATH. As someone who consumes ridiculous amounts in caffeine in energy drink form, they’re easily my least favorite. On an interesting (to me) sidebar, those shots and most other energy drinks are packed with guarana, and science doesn’t actually have a clue what it DOES, only that it seems to positively affect absorption of the caffeine for some reason. Robbie E & Rob Terry v. Wes Brisco & Garrett Bischoff Brisco gets worked over in the Jersey corner to start, but Robbie E does the “land on the foot” spot and Brisco makes the hot tag to Garrett. Flapjack for Robbie, but Terry gets a cheapshot. Bischoff gets a jawbreaker and Brisco comes in with a blind tag and finishes with a high cross at 3:20. This was like generic indy tag match #19439, but the crowd is so stupid they’re still cheering for the babyfaces and haven’t clued in their shocking secret, so they were hot for it. *1/2 It’s just impossible to predict how this Orlando crowd will react to anything. One of the masked men attacks Angle afterwards, injuring his knee. Meanwhile, Joseph Park visits OVW’s training facility. This doesn’t go well for him. Meanwhile, Tara visits Brooke and wants to make sure there’s no hard feelings when Jesse beats Bully Ray tonight. Brooke as usual is a huge stuck up bitch despite Tara being nothing but polite to her. Jeff Hardy & James Storm v. Aces & Eights It’s Doc and Knox this week. Can we just unmask someone else already? We already know 90% of the guys playing the parts, why not just move forward about 500 steps and get it over with? The babyfaces double-team Doc in the corner, and then Jeff slugs away on Knox and dumps him with a headscissors. Jeff follows with a dive off the apron, and we take a break while he dances. Back with Jeff in his natural state, taking a beating from the heels while the announcers try to find a way to name Mike Knox without using a name. Nothing exciting as Hardy gets the heat via punches and stomps and the Aces keep cutting off the ring in classic fashion. A sympathetic babyface getting punched repeatedly in the face by big ugly heels ALWAYS WORKS. That’s why I love tag team wrestling. Doc with a splash for two and James Storm has HAD ENOUGH, but of course that just allows more punishment from the Aces. Jeff finally comes back with the whisper in the wind, but Doc cuts him off AGAIN as this heat segment reaches epic proportions. Finally, it’s hot tag Storm, who comes in with a high cross on Knox for two. Corner clothesline and Hardy teams up for Poetry in Motion, and Doc takes a double suplex. More Aces run in and the faces clean house, and hit their finishes to end it at 15:00. That’s the first Aces match I’ve completely enjoyed. ***1/4 Simple formula that works. Devon reveals that Austin Aries paid them off. AJ Styles is out to let us know that he’s tired of being “the corporate janitor” and always doing the right thing, so from now on he’s doing his own thing. Meanwhile, Daniels & Kazarian celebrate AJ’s fall from grace and argue over Christmas presents (“I already got you that gift certificate!”) Rob Van Dam v. Kenny King They have gotta get that belt off RVD. It’s killing the division. Rob wins a battle of THE MARTIAL ARTS with a kick, but King tosses him in heelish fashion. Back in, he gets two. Snap suplex and he slugs away on the mat, and follows with a running splash in the corner, but Rob puts him down with a spinkick and hits the moonsault for two. King comes back with a spinkick and necksnaps him on the top, then springboards into a Buff blockbuster for two. Another charge misses and Rob misses his moonsault, but recovers with a northern lights suplex for two. Awkward sequence sees Rob legdropping him and everyone out of position, and they head up where Rob gets a high cross, which King rolls through with his feet on the ropes for the pin at 5:46. So King is suddenly a heel, and these guys have NO chemistry. ** Meanwhile, Hulk Hogan does not approve of whatever relationship Bully Ray and Brooke have, even though we don’t actually know what that relationship is. Bully clarifies that there’s no relationship, and she was just apologizing to him on the couch because Hulk is such a jackass to Bully. Bully Ray v. Jesse Bully is in a bad mood and pounds on Jesse to take it out, but Jesse gets a cheapshot to hold him off. Bully no-sells his chops and puts him down with a big boot. He abuses Jesse with chops in the corner, prompting Tara to come in and beg for mercy. Of course, Jesse attacks from behind and finally gets some offense, throws forearm shots and a low dropkick. As annoying as Jesse is, I gotta feel bad for the guy given how red and swollen his chest is. And then Bully hits him AGAIN, so Jesse puts him down with a clothesline that looks pretty stiff. Jesse’s showing some FIRE here! Jesse slugs away in the corner and Tara adds some choking, and Jesse gets another dropkick and poses. Taz notes that it’s not the time to pose. THERE’S ALWAYS TIME FOR POSING! Well, OK, so Bully hits the Bubba Cutter and pins him at 6:05, so maybe THIS particular time wasn’t the right one, but in general there’s always time for posing. I really enjoyed this match, actually, probably thanks to the greatness of Bully Ray, but Jesse surprisingly held his own here. **1/2 Oddly, the aspect ratio switches to 16×9 after the match before returning to the normal 4×3 following the break. Austin Aries admits that yes, he paid off Aces & Eights. He feels very betrayed by Hulk Hogan after doing his dirty work for him against the Aces. Oh crap, is TNA booked by Jesse Baker now? Jeff Hardy comes out and promises that all Aries has to do is ask for a title shot. Aries is skeptical and asks if he has to build an apparatus around the ring for a “Dragon’s Lair match” in order to get a shot. Instead, Hardy challenges him to a title match NEXT WEEK on Championship Thursday. Aries doesn’t want to do what the fans want, and Hardy lays him out with the Twist of Fate before Aries runs away to end the show. The Pulse As usual, a couple of good matches bail out the idiotic storylines, making for another enjoyable show.
December 13, 2012
Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida
Tom Phillips, William Regal
finally time for Mahal vs. Rollins II, which is annoying as things
have changed a lot since this was filmed. Anyway, the match last
time was fine but I wish there was more of a reason for these two to
be fighting instead of just over the title. All we’ve really heard
is “I’m the champion” and “I want the title.” That’s not
exactly enough to hook fans with a guy treated as a jobber in WWE vs.
a member of a team whose gimmick doesn’t exist in NXT yet. Let’s get
open with a recap of the title situation and Mahal attacking Rollins
vs. Sasha Banks
Banks is debuting here and has been in the New England indies for a
few years. I really have an issue with two people in a match being
younger than me. It makes me feel old watching this. Banks isn’t
bad looking but Paige is WAY over with the fans here. Paige takes
Banks to the mat with a headscissors and rolls her around with it in
a move I haven’t seen before.
nips up to escape and hits a Sin Cara armdrag out of the corner for
two. Paige goes into banshee mode with her screaming and the fans go
NUTS. A fisherman’s suplex gets two for Paige and it’s off to a
double chickenwing. Sasha escapes with a pair of rollups for two but
Paige hits that snap Angle Slam kind of move called the Paige Turner
for the pin at 4:03.
C. Nothing too bad here as
Paige continues to impress. She’s clearly very comfortable in the
ring and can do whatever is needed of her. Her looks are just a
bonus at this point, but unfortunately she likely would get messed up
on the main roster because of her pale skin color. Anyway, decent
match here and Sasha looked decent enough.
Reigns brags about the size of his watch but gets a phone call and
recap the end of last week’s show where Regal saved Kidd from Kruger
and Kruger are gunning for Steamboat, Kidd and Barretta. Kruger’s
voice is pretty awesome here. Oh and if Regal gets involved in their
business again, Regal can join them in the ICU.
Grey vs. ???
the match, we get another awesome Bray Wyatt promo about love and
power. Wyatt brings out his son, who is a big bald guy with an
awesome beard whose name I couldn’t understand. The guy is big and
muscular and he kicks Grey in the face to start. He looks like he’s
in green prison garb for lack of a better description. Wyatt is
sitting in a rocking chair on the stage. The guy slams Grey down and
puts on a bearhug where he whips Grey from side to side. A big side
slam ends Grey at 2:00.
match Wyatt says the man’s name is Rowan and says to follow the
Commissioner Dusty Rhodes to hype up the main event. However, he
also wants to talk about Vickie Guerrero. Vickie is welcome here any
time, but there are no bounties allowed in NXT unless it’s run by
Dusty. The bounty is officially revoked and here’s Camacho to
protest. He calls Dusty jefe (boss) and Dusty says it’s either
General Commissioner or…..Camacho: “El Capitan?” Dusty: “I
LOVE THAT!” Camacho says the bounty has to be on because he has to
get Hunico out of Mexico. If Dusty doesn’t reinstate the bounty then
Camacho is going to reinstate it on Dusty.
brings out Big E. Langston, and Dusty makes a handicap match with
Camacho and whoever he picks against Langston. Big E. is cool with
that. Again: Dusty isn’t out here long and he makes something happen
while advancing a storyline. Dusty was there about four minutes,
which is the longest time he’s been on camera yet on this show.
Show is answering Bo Dallas’ challenge. He says that he’s going to
knock out Dallas so that Dallas never makes it to the main shows.
That’s next week as well.
Title: Seth Rollins vs. Jinder Mahal
is now in 3MB, which is annoying as all the promos and videos tonight
have had Mahal in his old attire. After some big match intros we’re
ready to go. Mahal immediately heads to the floor for a few seconds
to mess with Rollins’ head. Back in and the champion (Rollins) goes
for Mahal’s arm, sending him to the ropes for more stalling. Rollins
hooks a headlock which goes nowhere so Seth peppers him with
head to the floor and Rollins hits a HARD chop. Back in and Seth
hits some kicks as Mahal is in trouble. Jinder sends him to the
apron and shoves Seth off the ropes to finally take over. We take a
break and come back with Mahal choking in the corner. A suplex on
the floor gets two for Mahal and it’s off to a double arm hold. That
doesn’t last long so a backbreaker gets another two count, as does a
knee to the face.
hit a quick chinlock but Rollins fights out with some shots to the
ribs and a backdrop. Seth tries to go up top but is almost
immediately crotched. A clothesline gets two for Jinder and it’s
back to the chinlock as we take another break. Back with Rollins in
a reverse chinlock which is transitioned into a regular version.
Rollins fights up and hits a big enziguri to put both guys down.
up and Seth dropkicks Mahal down and fires off right hands on the
mat. They slug it out until Mahal gets clotheslined to the floor.
Rollins hits a suicide dive and Mahal is in trouble. Back in and
Seth hits a springboard knee to the side of the head for two. Seth
puts him on the top and kicks Mahal in the head, but his super rana
is countered into a sunset flip for two.
comes back again with a sitout slam for two but jumps into a
dropkick/knee to the ribs from Seth. This is a very back and forth
match. Rollins misses a splash in the corner and Jinder pounds away.
Seth counters out of it and hits the running buckle bomb on the
opposite corner. The full nelson slam is escaped so Mahal hits a
knee to the back of the head and hooks the camel clutch. Seth
immediately gets to the rope and comes back with the low superkick
(Avada Kedavra) and the standing Sliced Bread (Skywalker) for the pin
to retain at 15:20 shown of 22:20.
B. No complaints here as these
two have some solid chemistry together. Thankfully this wasn’t a
comedy match for Mahal and he was just in different attire instead of
being completely goofy. Rollins winning these come from behind
matches is the perfect way to build up a guy like him and the match
worked very well overall. Good stuff, especially for a TV match.
Graves gets in Rollins’ face to end the show with a sarcastic clap.
Rating: A. Good match, decent
Divas match, good character stuff with Wyatt and Rowan, setting up
the next title feud, promo addressing the end of last week’s show and
two big matches announced for next week. What else could you
possibly want in a one hour wrestling show?
b. Sasha Banks – Paige Turner
b. Oliver Grey – Side Slam
Rollins b. Jinder Mahal – Skywalker
———- Forwarded message ———-
From: "Kerry" > Found this on ESPN, and knowing your love for UFC, just wanted your take on the various "storylines" in the article. Also, TANK ABBOTT wrote a book?
> (Also, I'm pretty sure someone's sent you this/you've already seen it by now. I'm still curious.)
> http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/eticket/story?page=eightmenout You were the first one actually. Interesting read! On a totally unrelated slant, I'm also currently engrossed by Sean Howe's book about Marvel Comics, which somehow makes you feel even WORSE for Jack Kirby and Jerry Siegel.
Memorial Coliseum, Jacksonville, Florida
Tenay, Bobby Heenan, Tony Schiavone, Larry Zbyszko
on a Tuesday for reasons that weren’t given. Anyway the main event
tonight is a match I remember pretty well for some reason as Benoit
and Flair challenge the Outsiders for the tag titles. Other than
that we get to hear if Luger’s challenge to Hogan for a title match
at Road Wild is accepted or not. Let’s get to it.
Girls of course. They’re certainly better looking than Tony and
Bischoff to really get things going. They have a microphone and are
standing in the ring, so Tony deduces that they obviously have
something to say. You can’t buy analysis like this people. They
decide to lay down on the mat and take it easy for this interview.
Hogan says that most of the people in this arena and in the back are
here because of him. Now that we’re in the 90s, he sets the pace for
Konnan is another step of the way closer to world dominance. I
wouldn’t exactly call it that but it’s his company I guess. Luger
wants what Hogan has, because Hogan is the best. Hollywood says he’s
smarter than Luger is and he wants him in a title match one on one.
He accepts the challenge for Sturgis. Hogan seemed to be rambling a
lot more than usual here which is weird for him. He may sound crazy
most of the time but he usually makes it sound decent.
other matches for Tsubusa, both of them in six man tags in Japan.
He’s a masked guy with a shiny cape and that’s about it. The 187 and
Tequila Sunrise make Tsubusa tap out in about 25 seconds.
Dragon vs. Steven Regal
guy and Regal is defending. The champ cranks on Dragon’s arm but
Dragon speeds things up to escape. Dragon has the awesome black and
gold attire on tonight so you know he’s going to be on his game.
Regal gets kicked hard by his challgener before doing his headstand
in the corner. Steven takes him down and pounds away on the mat
before putting dragon on the top, only to get taken down by a sunset
bomb. A reverse suplex puts Dragon down so Dragon comes back with
the kicks and a Dragon Sleeper to win the title out of nowhere.
Dragon is one of those guys that had the skill in the ring and was
better than most of the other cruiserweights, but the lack of
personality always held him back. Now that being said, this was
solid stuff because it was what Dragon was best at: matches where he
had someone solid to work with and you got a good match out of it in
the process. Solid stuff here, especially for a four minute match.
announce who the next Horseman is going to be. The choice
is…..Syxx? Yeah that Syxx. Syxx comes out and makes fun of the
Horsemen for being old (the announcers actually bought Syxx as the
new member of course) and Flair says Syxx almost cost him his job.
Ric belts him in the face and Benoit comes out to stand between Syxx
and Flair. Syxx promises Outsider revenge and that’s that.
for a bit, Giant no sells some dropkicks and grabs Muta by the
throat, and Muta mists him for the DQ.
Savage in this version) comes out for a beatdown but Giant shrugs
them off. Luger comes out to help but Giant grabs him for a
chokeslam….but puts him down before he chokeslams him. He was
blind for that fight and the near chokeslam on Luger. I’m not
entirely sure what the point of the Luger stuff was there.
to start as we hear about the Nitro Parties, which is exactly what it
sounds like: a bunch of people watching Nitro and filming it. Mongo
puts on a headlock followed by a shoulder to take Dean down, but a
knee drop misses. Steve blocks a sunset flip out of the corner and
hits a kind of World’s Strongest Slam for no cover. Malenko comes
back with a good German Suplex which pops the crowd a bit.
of move puts Dean down and here are Debra and Jarrett for a
distraction. Mongo goes after him but gets guillotined on the top
rope, allowing Dean to hit a dropkick and one of the worst looking
small packages of all time (Mongo’s fault) for the pin. This was
supposed to be an upset because of the size difference, but does
anyone buy Mongo as a bigger talent/star than Dean?
The best way to sum this match up is in four words: Mongo bad,
Malenko good. Really that’s all there is to it. McMichael tried but
he just never got better no matter how long he was in the ring for.
He couldn’t even get rolled up without it looking terrible. When
Dean Malenko can’t carry you to a decent match, it’s clear you’re not
Malenko why he’s associating with Jarrett. Dean doesn’t answer
because Mongo comes up. Security takes him off and Jeff pitches a
partnership idea to Dean. Malenko says ok and Debra runs her mouth
because WCW feels we haven’t suffered enough tonight. Jarrett runs
his mouth a bit more and apparently Dean is going to think about it
with a headscissors but a dropkick misses. Eddie starts stomping but
we head to the floor for a chase. Back in and Hector uses a side
roll to roll Eddie around the ring about four times for two. Eddie
comes back with some biting but another headscissors sends him to the
floor. Hector hits a big plancha on the floor but back inside, Eddie
powerbombs him down and hits the Frog Splash for a fast pin.
This is the same problem I’ve mentioned before: Hector is a talented
guy, but other than his name, he doesn’t mean much to most WCW
audiences. I get what they were going for here with the sibling
rivalry thing but it’s hard to care here because Hector isn’t a guy
we know as far as his stuff in WCW goes.
in to beat up Eddie. He puts him in the Cloverleaf but Hector breaks
it up. Dean then beats up Hector as well.
a major talent acquisition to announce. Dancing Stevie Richards
comes up to say that he’s signed a contract. JJ wants to talk about
Raven so Stevie says he needs to go see Raven in the front row.
Dillon offers Raven the contract, saying that everything he wanted is
in the deal. Raven is confused but Richards says that he negotiated
Raven’s contract himself. Apparently Bird Boy is almost making as
much money as Richards and gets a rental car with a tape deck. Raven
goes on another rant and rips up the contract. Oh and he hits
here with Norton. Luger hits a hip toss to start but Norton comes
back with a clothesline to take over. Luger comes back and here’s
the NWO run-in to give Lex the DQ win.
Racks Vincent. Lex talks a bit until Hogan comes out to exchange
some brief insults.
and Konnan is here to meet them.
vs. Benoit/Flair, presumably for the titles. Before the bell, we cut
to the back to see Hennig and Flair talking. Apparently it was
supposed to be Hennig coming out earlier when Syxx appeared. Wrath
and La Parka start things off with the skeleton man (La Parka) taking
over with some kicks. He goes up but jumps into an elbow so it’s off
to Psychosis vs. Mortis. Mortis stomps away in the corner but
Psychosis breaks free and goes up…..and falls without being touched
at all. Ah the perils of live TV.
with a dropkick and everyone falls to the floor, where La Parka hits
a big corkscrew plancha to the floor. Psychosis slides in to try to
dive on Wrath, only to get caught and slammed onto the floor. Mortis
suplexes Psychosis back in for two but misses a top rope backsplash.
Onoo and Vandenberg get in a fight, as do Wrath and La Parka.
Psychosis rolls up Mortis for two but there’s no referee to count.
Wrath picks up Psychosis for a powerbomb and Mortis makes it a
powerbomb/neckbreaker combo for the pin.
This was WAY better than you would have expected and got pretty
entertaining by the end. The botch was bad but it happens every now
and then and there’s almost nothing you can do about it. La Parka
and Psychosis didn’t look like jobbers here, but rather a tag team
that got beat by a better one. This was a surprisingly fun match and
I liked it way more than I was expecting to.
breaks a wooden chair over Mortis’ back but Wrath kicks his head off
to stand tall.
means anything as a singles guy. Buff armdrags him down and things
speed WAY up, resulting in a hiptoss to take Booker down. He
immediately spins up and kicks Bagwell down to take over before
knocking Buff to the floor. Back in and Bagwell chokes away a bit
and slaps Booker in the back of the head. A clothesline turns Booker
inside out for two.
Nick Patrick get in a shoving match and Bagwell hides in the corner.
HHH and Earl Hebner used to do the same spot at house shows. Booker
comes back with a big forearm to the face and some atomic drops for
no cover. The Harlem Side Kick gets two but Patrick gets hit in the
side of the head. Norton clotheslines Booker down and the
Blockbuster gives Buff the pin.
Bagwell was a low level NWO guy but he had a pretty good finisher
which I would like to see make a comeback as someone signature move.
Booker would get way better in the next year or so before becoming
the company’s top star in just a few years. Decent match here but it
was a little boring.
crutches, saying he’s refused surgery on his bad knee. He talks
about how he’s not scared of anyone or anything, but here’s Konnan to
kick the crutches away. Some luchadores come out to defend Rey but
Konnan says he’s got the Wolfpack watching his back.
doing his “I hate WCW thing”. Of all the people you waste an
idea like that on, you pick Wallstreet? The fans want DDP who hasn’t
been here tonight I don’t think. It’s officially Hennig vs. Page at
Road Wild. The PerfectPlex wins this in about 35 seconds.
out with Hennig but Page gets sent into the buckle to give Curt the
advantage. The PerfectPlex is countered into a Diamond Cutter and
the place goes nuts.
to Alex Wright’s music.
Outsiders vs. Ric Flair/Chris Benoit
a title match. Tony says it is, and while this is probably a bad
idea, I’ll go with it. Pay no attention to the Steiners winning like
84 #1 contenders matches in a row prior to this. We start with a
brawl and Flair vs. Hall get us going in the ring. The Horsemen
stand tall (not as tall as the Outsiders but tall in the metaphorical
sense) until we officially start with Benoit and Hall.
him down but Benoit hits a dragon screw leg whip and a northern
lights suplex for two. Hall bails so it’s off to Nash for a try at
the Canadian. Actually make that the Carolinian who is immediately
shoved down by Big Kev. Nash does all of his usual stuff in the
corner but Flair comes back with punches to the face. Syxx pops
Flair in the back of the head, giving Nash two off a side slam.
fallaway slam for two more. Nash comes in for some more high quality
choking and the running crotch attack while Flair is throat first
across the middle rope. Hall hits a running clothesline in the
corner to keep Flair in trouble. Nash hits a big over the shoulder
Snake Eyes on Flair before it’s back to Hall. Flair grabs a sleeper
out of nowhere but Hall reverses into one of his own, only to have
Flair quickly suplex out of it.
Benoit who cleans house on both Outsiders. Clotheslines put both
guys down and Flair stops Syxx from breaking up the Swan Dive. The
headbutt gets two on Hall until Nash makes the save. Benoit punches
out of the Jackknife but a Hall distraction lets Nash hit the big
boot for a pin out of nowhere.
I remember this match being a lot better. The ending seemed very
rushed and likely happened because they were out of time. If you
gave this match another five to seven minutes, it could go way up in
quality. Benoit getting a chance to shine is always a good thing, as
he was really starting to come into his own at this point. Not a bad
match but nothing great either.
Buzzkill on the bad arm until Mongo makes the save. The Steiners
come out to stare at the Outsiders as we go off the air.
This was a better episode of Nitro as you can see Road Wild’s card
coming together pretty well. Tonight had some good action and a lot
of it too, as we had ten matches on a single card. This worked
pretty well as WCW is starting to roll a bit heading into the biker
PPV. Pretty good stuff here tonight.
1. Was Scott Norton ever a target for Vince & the WWF? He seems like the kind of power dude they love. He looked like a legit tough guy, had a good heelish look, and had the lumbering, roided power offense Vince loved in the 90s.
Good question. He could have had Norton any time he wanted when the AWA was on their deathbed, so I'm presuming that there wasn't any interest in him.
I think Rick Rude and Randy Savage in 1989 would have been pretty awesome.
AJ Styles. He'd probably be a main eventer today for WWE if they had brought him in instead of cutting the contract loose and letting him go to TNA. But really who knew that a random guy in the cruiserweight tag team division would turn out so awesome?
Wrestlemania VII. It was pretty much planned from even before Warrior won the title in the first place.
6. What ever happened to Dan Spivey? Sid became a multi-time world champ in both promotions, but Spivey never really became anything.
7. In relation to the above question, is there an example of an established tag team having BOTH guys end up really successful? One guy always ends up a bigger star (Hart Foundation, Rockers, Skyscrapers, Edge/Christian), but I guess the Hardys both did fine for themselves?
Yup, Hardys both did good, although Jeff is clearly the bigger star. You could say Windham and Luger, I guess. Dusty Rhodes and Dick Murdoch both did well for themselves.
I also recall hearing that they basically wanted Saturn and took the other three as bonuses.
In the AOA reality without Xavier to stop him, Apocalypse has triumphed in turning the world into a nightmare where only the strong mutants survive and the only ones who stand against him are the X-Men led by Magneto. Apocalypse has “culled” more than 80% of the world’s human population and carved up the United States for himself and his four horsemen.
In this reality even being a mutant isn’t safe because Apocalypse doesn’t want any pussies in his universe.
|Strict no pussy policy.|
|Fucking mall kids!|
Also if you live in Kansas you are probably dead now thanks to this asshat.
But don’t worry because Superman is due back any day now!
by Logan Scisco
Jim Ross are in the booth and they are live from Hartford, Connecticut.
Contest: The Legion of Doom & Ahmed
Johnson defeat The Nation of Domination (w/D-Lo Brown & Clarence Mason)
when Ahmed pins Faarooq after a Pearl River Plunge at 6:06:
the match and that creates a beef between he and Faarooq. The crowd is hot for this opener and the
booking of the match helps as the faces dominate much of the action. The match continues the storyline of the
Nation falling apart as Savio and Crush are too distracted to tag in to help
Faarooq because they are jawing too much with Mason and walk out on Faarooq
after he confronts them. Faarooq also
gets some nice hang time when taking the Pearl River Plunge from Ahmed. This was a really entertaining squash to
start the show. Rating: **
Helmsley, carrying the King of the Ring crown, and Chyna are interviewed by
McMahon. Helmsley says that he should
have been the King of the Ring last year, but missed out because of McMahon’s
politics. Helmsley says that it’s his
time to rise to the top of the World Wrestling Federation. He issues an open challenge to the locker
room and Mankind appears on the Titantron.
Mankind asks for a rematch from the King of the Ring and comes out, but
gets attacked with the crown by Helmsley.
Helmsley did okay with this promo time, but some of his exchange
demonstrated his lack of acting skills at this stage of his career.
Raw is War t-shirt, which you can buy for $25 (plus $6 shipping & handling)
by calling 815-734-1161!
British Bulldog winning the European championship in the winter is shown.
Championship Match: The British Bulldog
(Champion) and Goldust (w/Marlena) wrestle to a double count out at 7:14 shown:
McMahon hypes it as a big deal. I
suppose that the booking team realized that it made little sense for the Bulldog
to have a title that was never defended on television. This is a methodical match, which has been
the Bulldog’s forte when he’s not facing a technically gifted opponent, and it
ends with a really weak double count out, as both men mindlessly brawl after
Goldust ends up outside of the ring following a body press. Rating: ½*
the Bulldog hot shots Goldust on the steps and goes to hit him with a chair,
but Marlena gets in the way. As the
Bulldog tries to decide whether to use the chair, Ken Shanrock rushes the ring
and slams the Bulldog and the two tease a confrontation before the Bulldog
decides to leave.
outside of the Nation of Domination’s locker room and we can hear them arguing
in there. Faarooq storms out of the
locker room and tells Hendrix that he is going to the ring to talk. Hendrix goes to talk to Crush and Savio Vega
and Savio rants in Spanish and Crush tells Hendrix that the Nation is fine.
Faarooq and some black members of the Nation.
Faarooq says he rescued Savio Vega and Crush’s career, but they just
stabbed him in the back so he fires them from the Nation. Faarooq then fires the other flunkies in the
Nation except D-Lo Brown, which includes Clarence Mason. Faarooq promises that a new Nation will be
formed that will be more powerful and loyal to him. Faarooq challenges Ahmed Johnson and the
Undertaker to a tag team match on next week’s show so that they can become the
first victims of the new Nation.
Austin “Pillmanizing” Brian Pillman’s ankle in October 1996 is shown.
1-900-737-4WWF to hear more about what is going on between Shawn Michaels and
Tommy Dreamer are shown walking through the crowd.
Doug Furnas & Philip LaFon after Thrasher pins Furnas when LaFon
inadvertently splashes Furnas at 3:34:
in the history of the WWF” gimmick, which is just incredibly lame and
unbecoming of the structure of their team.
I’m really not sure what the logic of giving them this gimmick was other
than the WWF just giving up on both guys and realizing that they weren’t going
to make it in the tag division. If
anything, LaFon and Furnas would have been nice additions to the Hart
Foundation, but they are really out of place in a heel role without a manager. There isn’t anything wrong with this match
except for the finish, which is botched since Thrasher and Furnas are too far
from the opposing corner. Rating:
with Rob Van Dam in the back and Lawler tells McMahon that ECW doesn’t want Van
Dam to compete, but he’s going to tonight.
infamous gun incident between Pillman and Austin from late 1996 are shown.
recap the entire show thus far.
Steve Austin, who comes out to an explosive reaction. McMahon says that Austin’s attack on Brian
Pillman last night at the King of the Ring was unbecoming, but Austin says it
brought a smile to his face. Austin says
he’ll kick Pillman’s ass all over the ring tonight and he volunteers to be part
of the five man team to face the Hart Foundation at the Calgary Stampede and
that he’ll wrestle the Hart Foundation five-on-one if he has to. This is a great promo because it sets up two
matches and appeals to the American fan base, which sees Austin as a hero, and
makes Austin come off as a heel to the Canadian audience, which was the Hart
Foundation’s center of fan support.
piece, the WWF uses pieces from its AOL website to show how great the King of
the Ring was. It’s like Twitter before
there was Twitter.
(w/Jerry Lawler) defeats Flash Funk with a split legged moonsault at 4:28:
Dam with a chair, but is held at bay by WWF officials. Funk is falling into Koko B. Ware territory,
as he’s an entertaining act that hasn’t won a match over a significant opponent
for a while. Both guys showcase their
aerial offense, which is a refreshing change of pace on the show, and put
together a solid match that would be more than acceptable by Nitro
cruiserweight standards. Rating:
Heyman hopes the guardrail to attack Lawler, but Lawler beats him down and
Dreamer hops the barrier and brawls with Van Dam.
out to do commentary for our next match.
Match: Sid pins Owen Hart
(Intercontinental Champion w/Jim Neidhart) after a chokeslam at 4:13:
Ring six man tag, where Owen pinned Sid to win the match for his team. Sid makes one guy’s day who has “Sid is God”
painted on his chest by giving him a fist bump.
Owen works the leg, which is the only strategy he can realistically try,
and when Neidhart interferes Shamrock is outraged, so he gives Neidhart a
belly-to-belly suplex on the floor which is an impressive sight and generates a
big crowd reaction. Left to his
longsome, Owen can’t fight off the “Master and Ruler of the World.” I’m puzzled by this booking because Sid was
on his way out of the company, but it did make Shamrock look like a bad
ass. Rating: **
model the Raw is War t-shirt. However,
Marc Mero comes out and gets her after she’s nearly finished her seductive
Mankind’s interview with Jim Ross is shown and Ross said that he felt really
helpless at the end of the interview and wished he had not taken the
assignment. Mankind says that he wishes
Vince McMahon took him while he was good and he thinks of that when he applies
the Mandible Claw to an opponent. It is
a rather dark interview, as Mankind talks about pain and suffering. This is the interview where Mankind puts Ross
in the Mandible Claw at the end and Ross sells it like death.
Honky Tonk Man) beats Bart Gunn with the Shake Rattle N’ Roll at 2:53:
Tonk Man got the match signed so Rockabilly could move on to other feuds. See, that’s what made this particular era
nice. Nearly every match had some type
of issue behind it and didn’t appear random.
A slow, glorified squash that gives closure to the Smoking Gunns feud,
which has to constitute one of the most subdued blowoffs to a feud in WWF
Foundation is shown talking strategy in the back before they chase off the
“Pillmanizing” Brian Pillman’s ankle on Superstars in October 1996 is the Super
Soaker Rewind segment.
down to wrestle Brian Pillman, but the Hart Foundation attacks him. Mankind runs out and makes a small save and
then runs into the ring and starts to wrestle Pillman, which sets up this bait
and switch match…
“The Loose Cannon” Brian Pillman by disqualification when Owen Hart interferes
at 5:12 shown:
happy that they did not get Austin-Pillman.
The match is a train wreck, as it builds little momentum for either
guy. The reception of the match is so
poor that McMahon and Ross are forced to acknowledge it on commentary. Mankind applies the Mandible Claw, but the
Hart Foundation intervenes and Austin and Shamrock come out and force the Hart
Foundation to flee. Rating: ¼*
Foundation flees, Austin gives Mankind an evil eye and gives Shamrock a Stone
Cold Stunner as we go off the air.
swerve at the end that was disappointing for all parties. The WWF was really testing some of its fans
by hyping Austin-Pillman twice but not delivering the match. There were some good points of storyline
development throughout the show, with the Nation of Domination breaking up and
starting a reformation and Ken Shamrock starting a grudge with the Hart
Foundation, but there wasn’t much else to report. I might’ve gone thumbs up before the bait and
switch at the end, but instead I’ll go neutral this week.
Well this certainly looks better than the first trailer, to say the least.