Flair/Steamboat in ’91?


Watching the series of Flair/Steamboat matches in 1989.  Vince had to have watched these matches back then secretly in his bedroom at night and known how awesome they were.  How in the hell did he not manage to get these two together in late 91' when Flair came in?  I'm sure if he told Steamboat that he was going to be in a program with Flair Steamboat would have stuck around and they could have actually made something worthwhile of his wasted run.


Scott


That was the common sentiment at the time, but somehow they managed not to think of it.  

Timing of Dustin/Terri Split



Follow-up question of sorts, since Goldust's own 97 interviews were brought up.

Watching the interview where he splits with Terri, it really feels like what we're seeing isn't just their characters splitting, but that that's when he made their real-life separation official, right then and there (albeit with some obvious references that would have fit with their characters only).

Question being – was that the case? Had they already separated before those aired? Did that not come till after? I'm seeing that their divorce was finalized October 18, 1999, so at the very least, if he didn't split with her live on-air like that, it had to be pretty damn close to when that aired.

Oh yeah, they were dragging all kinds of real life shit into that storyline.  The whole thing with Dakota on screen and Dustin the Family Man was apparently them trying to reconcile their marriage and failing.  

Question

Scott,

I’ve been watching Superstars from ‘92, and one of the things that seems strange to me is the return of 43 year old Bob Backlund to the WWF. Obviously, Backlund’s “crazy old man” heel character got over the following year, but the vanilla, white-bread babyface Backlund seemed very out of place in the 1992 WWF world filled with Doink and Papa Shango. 

Why did Vince decide to bring Bob back at this point? 
Because he was a big star from a previous era and Vince was pretty desperate for talent at that point. 

Best Heel Feud Win

Scott, 

What are your thoughts on the the best example of a heel decisively winning a feud?  Usually a heel gets the upper hand and the face gets some kind of revenge. My guess would be Ken Patera vs The Heenan Family. After the debate where Patera injured Heenan’s neck, months later Heenan got his revenge when the whole Heenan Family jumped Patera and whipped his back and even Bobby got his licks in. As far as I can remember, Patera never really got any type of revenge on Heenan or anyone in the family. 

Also, in the debate where Patera injured Heenan, Bobby went off about what a bad person Patera really was but his rant was censored on TV, any idea as to what Heenan actually said?  Wouldn’t seem he was dropping F bombs back then.

He was just saying his usual stuff and they bleeped it for effect.  
As for heels winning a feud, was there any more decisive example than the nWo beating the Horsemen in 1997?  Hennig reveals himself as an nWo member in the match where they going to get their revenge for the parody skit, and turns on Flair, and then retains the US title multiple times until Flair's group literally just breaks up and is done. 

Triple H/Batista


So with it being announced at No Holds barred, it spares us the "work a body part for 25 mins" Triple special but does this mean were gonna get the "dramatic lay around after each move" version we saw with him and Taker?

I liked that match!  Also, he and Batista has an awesome Cell match in 2005. I’m sure they’ll be fine.  

Black-ochet


As much as I love Aleister Black and Ricochet individually, their team is currently (no spoilers please) involved in the RAW, SD, and NXT tag title scene.

Do you think they’re too good by themselves to team and this is overkill or just right?

I hope there’re not working crazy house shows in addition to being on every TV show as this isn’t the best time to push hard and risk injury.

I’m not a fan. I think both guys could have been huge stars right off the hop by debuting alone, and now they’re mired into the weird morass of the tag divisions.  Black in particular checks all the boxes and should have been the big post-WM surprise debut in a top level feud.  They could have slotted  him right in with Strowman or whoever and built up to Brock.  

Best wrestling nickname?


What are you thoughts?

I’m sure a lot nostalgia plays into everyone’s thoughts.  But I would think it would have to be a nickname that when you hear it you think. “Dam- sucks no one else can use it today”

The Hitman

The Enforcer

Mr Perfect 

Nature Boy

Lunatic Fringe (just kidding)

Come to mind.

My personal favorite is The American Dream

What say you?

Conversely. What is the worst?

Apex Predator is pretty fucking stupid. 
For the good ones, the Russian Nightmare was a badass nickname.  Tells you everything about the character and the gimmick during the ring introduction. Also acted as a foil to the American Dream.  

Big E


I don't know how much of Smackdown you've been catching, but after seeing the serious promos and limited silliness from the New Day lately my question isn't about Kofi — my question is why isn't Big E a bigger star? When he's not clowning he can talk and work and he has a unique look. Have you ever seen anything special in him?

No, I think he's slotted right where he should be.  Wasn't he IC champion for a cup of coffee?  He's overachieved a bit with the New Day gimmick, although given his look and moveset I could see Vince giving him a shot.  

End of New Day?

It seems to me like this Kofi angle is leading up to Vince forcing him to possibly quit the New Day or the whole team has to disband for him to get his title shot. Would they actually do this or do they make too much $$$ with their merch sales?

Hey, they split up the Shield and the Wyatt Family multiple times, so why not?  It kind of makes sense for an endgame, in as much as anything in this storyline makes sense.  

Mirror Match


You get a Bret Hart vs Brett Hart match on Superstars and don't make a single Bizarro World joke?


You've changed, man.


Ok, edit this one in mentally:
Hey look, it’s the guy whose gimmick is incessantly patting himself on the back!  And he’s facing Barry Horowitz!

He’s All That


Just need to take a moment to appreciate that, in just a couple of months, heel Daniel Bryan has helped elevate both Kofi "Placeholder Midcard Feud" Kingston and Mustafa "A Cruiserweight named MUSTAFA ALI" Ali into main event faces that the audience could plausibly see and enjoy winning the WWE Championship. Did he make a bet with HHH that he could transform anybody into the locker room into a contender by Prom night? Are we 100% sure Freddie Prinze, Jr. isn't on the writing staff anymore?


I’d be terrified of seeing how good he would be if he wasn’t just a B plus player! 

Here Comes the Axe…

Demolition adds Crush near the end of their WWF run to work Axe out of regular action & cuz they're heels now. Much has been said about their look-a-like "we can't tell them apart" nonsense gimmick, where they operated on FreeBird Rules and cheated.

Was there a reason they didn't put ANY effort into making them look similar? If they wrestled in their cool masks, if Smash cut his hair, if they had the same face paint, etc… Any of these might've sold this slightly more.

Was it supposed to be a dumb thing, like other imposter angles that were obvious? Was it just a case of "they're nearing their end, so who cares"?


Pretty sure that by then it was just "We don't give a shit" and they wanted to squeeze whatever money they could out of the LOD feud and move on.  Bill Eadie's relationship with Vince was getting pretty strained at that point anyway.  

Bart Gunn/Butterbean-W.M. 15


Did Vince McMahon really believe that Bart Gunn could beat Butterbean at W.M. 15 because of his success in the Brawl For All?  Also, did the fact that Gunn got knocked the fuck out in 35 seconds have to do with him disappearing from the company shortly thereafter?  

Yes and yes.  The people in charge, who apparently never watched UFC or boxing, were 100% sure that Bart was going to steamroll Butterbean.  Power of the wrestling bubble for you.  

Tryouts that thankfully went nowhere

Just found out Van F'n Hammer had two tryout matches against Virgil and Demento in July 1993 for the WWF. Dodged a bullet there. What are other tryouts that thankfully didn't lead to TV appearances/full-time jobs?

As noted by others, if AJ Styles / Samoa Joe / Christopher Daniels had been swallowed up by the WWE system when they were having their tryouts at the tail end of the Attitude Era, the wrestling landscape might be a completely different place, in a very bad way.  

Long time, maybe last time.



Been reading your sites since a student turned me onto your writings about 15 years ago. I love your content and it is the only pro wrestling site I visit. Having said that, after seeing the Confederate flag posted front and center on your home page today, I feel like I am no longer welcome there.
Now, I watched The Freebirds and lived through all of that stuff, but there's no reason in 2019 that that icon of slavery should be on your front page.
If this were 2009, I'd do what I did my whole life and bite my lip and go on. But I think you're a man of integrity and a great writer and deserve a chance to explain to me why you're allowing "white power" images on your homepage.



This is why I never recommend running a website.  
Also, RSG, stop being such a huge racist.  

New WWE merchandise


I'm usually not one to care about new t-shirts and stuff, but this has got to be the strangest partnership since they did those various animated dvd movies with Scooby Doo, Flinstones, Jetsons, and those Surf's Up penguins.

https://www.wwe.com/article/new-wwe-collaboration-with-garbage-pail-kids?fbclid=IwAR30tl8GUj42umjbRQVacq0Z08sxdMXnQhf5nTEr0xSSbpY5jl-9qYFelk0

I never saw the penguin movie, but the Scooby Doo movies RULED.  It was snarky new version Scooby gang.  

Origin of Mankind/Mick Foley in 97

Scott,

I was watching the interviews that Jim Ross did with Mankind
in 97 recently, where they explored Mick Foley’s real-life history.

Because of how different that series of interviews was from
anything else they’d done around that time, I have to wonder – who masterminded
those? Obviously, they worked for moving Mankind away from Paul Bearer (the
Bearer-Taker storyline’s own direction to elsewhere had a hand in that too, but these worked
for giving Mick his own new direction to go in after Revenge of the Taker), but they
were also something of a curveball. So what’s the behind the scenes on these?


I'm sure someone who's read Mick's book more recently can tell you off the top of their head better than I could.  But yeah, it was an amazing way to build sympathy for him and foreshadow two new characters.  

Wrestlers who would get over today that weren’t then?


Are there any wrestlers that didn't get over during a particular era that you think would get over today?  I could actually see Dan Severn getting over now, or at least better than he did with the WWF 20-21 years ago.  I think his silent badass character and UFC background would play better in the 2019 WWE than the late WWF 1990's Attitude Era.  

Really?  I don't think so, Jack Swagger was basically the same kind of character and wrestler and he didn't get over much. 
You know who would have flourished if he debuted in 2019?  Dynamite Kid.  We've now come to a point where someone his size doing his crazy shit can immediately get accepted as a mainstream star.  Which is not to say he wasn't over at the time, because he was a god in Japan and tag team champion in WWE and legend already, but I think he'd be a top tier World champion level guy almost immediately today.  

Network

Hey Scott, I'm cheap so every year I get the network for a month around Wrestlemania. What are your recommendations from content added this past year?

I'm thinking Edge and Christian season 2, the Superstars you have been reviewing. What else?

HIDDEN GEMS.  AWA Christmas shows, breakfast cereal battle, Team Challenge series pilot, Ciampa with hair, random NXT house show main events…you can fill up your month easily.  Plus Southpaw Regional Wrestling is on there too.