My name is Justin Thorne and I am a LONG time reader of yours (How did I get this old?) that started at SummerSlam 2002. I don't follow current wrestling, but I definitely check the blog for RAW Rants/Observer Recaps as I've been grinding through 1993-1997. That probably sounds masochistic, but it's to satisfy the inner wrestling historian in me, as I'm sure you understand. I also drop in to read rants of modern PPVs that are happening to see what's going on in the product and see if I want to get back in. (Spoiler: I haven't.)
In 2017, I asked if you'd share an episode of my web-series, The Following Announcement, which you DID, which was really incredible and I was super thankful for. You've definitely been an inspiration to look critically on television throughout the years and influenced me to try to create my own. I've decided to ask for another opportunity for a share, or even just your view/review, as my show, still at it 4 years later, just made an episode based on the Dark Side of the Ring format. I think it's among the best work we've done and if it doesn't hook you in 60 seconds, well, something something, two words for you, yadda.
Thanks, I'll be around no matter what. I post as Justin Michaels sometimes but I'm much more lurker than worker.
PS Definitely watched DS9 a few years back with your reviews as a companion piece, killer stuff.
Holy Fudge Balls, it’s still warm as heck here in Merry Ol’ Blighty!
Dynamite was a fun show last night, with a hot crowd helping make up for some of the weaker in-ring matches and the show in general just breezing by. It’s just darn nice to have a wrestling show to watch every week that reminds me of why I actually like wrestling to begin with.
Monday Night Raw
Date: February 19, 2007
Location: Rabobank Arena, Bakersfield, California
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler
We’re done with No Way Out and that means we have less than six weeks to go before Wrestlemania XXIII. The main events are set but we still need a bit more of the card to come together. That means we could be in for something good tonight, which will likely not include another appearance from Donald Trump. Let’s get to it.
The SmarK Rant for AEW Dynamite – 07.21.21
“Fyter Fest, Night Two”
Live from Dallas, TX
Your hosts are Jim Ross, Tony Schiavone & Excalibur
Date: July 21, 2021
Location: Curtis Culwell Center, Garland, Texas
Commentators: Excalibur, Tony Schiavone, Jim Ross
It’s another special show this week with Fyter Fest Night Two, headlined by the IWGP United States Title Texas Deathmatch between Jon Moxley and Lance Archer. The recent shows have been pretty good as of late and I’m curious to see how well they can keep it up. Odds are they will, as they tend to do. Let’s get to it.
Are you tired of WWE trying to endlessly milk your nostalgia for every penny to distract you from the fact that their current product is hit or miss at best?!
Then welcome to the Blog Of Doom. I’m PMH, one letter stands for Paul, the others don’t. CM Punk may be headed to AEW, and tonight, Dynamite has night 2 of the Fyter Fest! Britt Baker and The Mox will defend their titles, and Chris Jericho will get hit with a chair numerous times! (Don’t tell Mick Foley)
I think I accidentally stole my “get to it” line from Tommy Hall. Doomers, I need a new go-home line… winner gets an authentic near mint Marvel No Prize.
As noted in prior columns, this show was a joint effort by the WWF, New Japan Pro Wrestling, and All Japan Pro Wrestling. The WWF was looking to expand its global presence while New Japan and All Japan felt threatened by Akira Maeda’s shoot-like Universal Wrestling Federation, which drew a 50,000 person crowd to the Tokyo Dome for a big show in November 1989. To counter them, New Japan and All Japan worked together on a supershow at the Tokyo Dome on February 10. Then, they built on that effort by partnering with the WWF for another big card in Tokyo on April 13 that was named The Wrestling Summit. According tothehistoryofwwe.com, the show drew a crowd of 53,742.
Welcome back to more Dream Matches! This time, we’ve got something weird- apparently when John Tenta was just starting out in wrestling, he was in ALL JAPAN of all places, teaming up with the Ace and weighing only 300-ish lbs., and fighting the legendary Road Warriors!
Also I found more of that bizarre Land of Giants team, as they take on… The Undertakers? Yes- it’s a pair of obese twins with a name the WWF actually bought off of them. Then wen see a “Battle of the Kings” as King Mabel decides to take out Ken Shamrock shortly after his King of the Ring victory- a shockingly good attempt at putting a guy over from MABEL of all people! And then, in a fantastically-terrible bout, come see the legendary POWER UTI, villain of Mick Foley’s first book and national hero of Nigeria, take on the worst wrestler in AEW- Doc “Super Festus” Gallows! And then we cap things off with WCW’s Wrath & Mortis vs. The Faces of Fear in a shockingly-good Hoss Brawl!
JUMBO TSURUTA & JOHN TENTA vs. THE ROAD WARRIORS (Hawk & Animal, w/ Paul Ellering):
(All Japan, 1987.6.8)
* Haha, oh Jesus- look at this! Baby John Tenta, fresh out of sumo and having lost a LOT of weight, is in the early stage of his pro wrestling career in All Japan as the Ace’s tag team partner, and they’re going up against the early form of the Road Warriors, in full black spike-vests and ’80s facepaint! Tenta, in his navy-blue singlet with a Canadian flag on it, is almost unrecognizable, being barely 300 lbs. and scarcely larger than Jumbo- he’s all straight lines! Even at 24 he’s lost almost all the hair on top of his head, though.
ROH Wednesday’s Continue!
Last week we concluded our review of The Epic Encounter (Check the archives if you haven’t read that one and are feeling generous to this humble scribe) and now we move on to the next show in the form of Round Robin Challenge 2.
The first Round Robin Challenge had one of the best matches in the early history of ROH with Bryan Danielson and Low Ki going at it. This time we’ve got Christopher Daniels, Paul London and The Amazing Red competing. They’ll all wrestle each other once, and the person with the best record overall will win the challenge.
We’ll split this one into two parts as per usual
The famous Omega and Page vs Bucks match is one where you could see the guys feeding off the crowd and having more and more fun as they went along.
From a psychological standpoint, isn't the cash-in a shortcut to win a title, rather than winning it in a fair fight? So a very heelish thing? I don't get it
Good day to you all!
I decided to go back and play Dynasty Warriors 4 last night after the movie put me in the mood for some Hack ‘N’ Slash excitement, and I actually spent most of it getting clobbered because I had it on a higher difficulty level than usual without realising and it had been a while since I played it so I was pretty rusty. I still had fun with it though. Xiahou Dun and his Kirin Blade don’t take no prisoners yo!
The SmarK Rant for WWE NXT – 07.20.21
Live from the Capitol Wrestling Center
Your hosts are Wade Barrett, Vic Joseph & Beth Phoenix
Oh man, they’re busting out “The End Is Here” again, so you know they mean business! And I bet Joe is terrified of facing the guy who lost to Jeff Hardy in (checks notes) 1 minute and 40 seconds!