The legendary internet personality Mr. Tito writes...
Years ago, while you were reviewing Star Trek DVD's... I requested the review of Star Trek 2, the Wrath of Khan, especially provided how you reviewed movies 3 through Nemesis. But no Khan, in which I'd argue is potentially the best DVD ever. »»
The SmarK DVD Rant for The Greatest Wrestling Stars of the 80s
- This is one where I'm not sure why I never got around to picking it up, since it's totally up my alley as far as the subject matter goes. Plus a few times now when I've complained about a certain match not being a DVD set, someone has said "Oh, that match is on the Greatest Star of the 80s DVD" and finally I just decided to pick the damn thing up already. That proved to be a bigger challenge than I thought, as I finally found it in stock at Highspots.com. Should have bought it from Wal-Mart last year when they had it for super-cheap.
The concept with this set is that we get 15 mini-bios of 80s legends, ala the Hall of Fame segments on 24/7.
First up, Bobby Heenan, who goes from midcard wrestler to main event manager in the AWA, and of course Steve Lombardi is RIGHT THERE to add his comments.»»
"You stay right there." "There's no hair on her vagina. Do you think she's OK?" - Hank Moody and his daughter discuss the facts of life in their own way. »»
Just before we start, I wanted to mention once again that my new book Dungeon of Death: Chris Benoit and the Hart Family Curse will be hitting bookshelves in November of this year, and in fact you can win a free copy of that book, or copies of my older books, every month just by hitting www.stablewars.com and predicting PPV results correctly. It's free and fun and you can win my stuff, what more do you need?
The SmarK 24/7 Rant for World Championship Wrestling - May 24 1986
- Your hosts are Tony & David
- And yes, Dusty didn't go without a belt for long, as an excited David announces that Dusty and the Road Warriors have won the Six-Man titles from the Russians. Ric Flair immediately puts it into perspective: Yeah, well, he's the World SINGLES champion, the only title people care about. And of course he has to run down Morton's teen fans, Magnum's skinny arms, and Hawk's respirator (for going 30 minutes). I think we just peaked with the first segment.»»
(aka The SmarK 24/7 Rant for Shorties: WarGames part II)
WarGames '91: Ric Flair, Sid Vicious, Barry Windham & Larry Zbyszko v. Brian Pillman, Sting, Rick Steiner & Scott Steiner.
Pillmanâ€™s shoulder is all taped up, due (kayfabe-wise) to a Horsemen attack covered in the pre-match video. Pillman starts with Windham and gets a flying clothesline with the good arm, and uses the roof of the cage for leverage as he takes Windham down with a rana. He chops away in the corner, and headfakes Windham into taking a missile dropkick. He misses a splash, however, but comes back with a low blow. Allâ€™s fair in love and Wargames. Barry hits the cage and starts the blood flowing early, so Brian gives him some extra treatment on the cage. Jawbreaker and he bites the cut and hammers it in the corner. Hiptoss and he goes ground and pound, and back into the cage goes Windham. Pillman goes up with a flying clothesline and another jawbreaker, and he tosses Windham into the second ring and into the cage again. Windham is just selling like nuts for Pillman here. Spinkick puts Windham down and Pillman goes to work on the leg, but Windham comes back and slugs it out with him. Windham tries a piledriver, but Pillman reverses and comes off the top with another shot. The first period expires and the heels win the coin toss (duh), so Flair is in next.»»
The inbox waits for no man, flu or not, so let's clear out the backlog.
With the WWE constantly putting out autobiographies, how come we have never seen one from Vince? Obviously he can skew history the way he wanted and could heel it up or shred anyone he wanted and not have to answer to anybody. I think it would be a good sell depending on either how honest he is or how many people he blasts. What is he waiting for?
I've had people ask me this one before, and the answer I've always heard is that Vince considers the WWE itself to be his autobiography or something. And really, Vince lives 100% of his life to run the company night and day, so it's not like he'd ever have time to sit down and write one. I think it's much more likely that a Shane or Stephanie would write one after he goes completely insane and retires or dies or whatever. If you ever read his Playboy interview, though, you'd realize the kind of bullshit meters you'd have to be using to get to the truth anyway. I'd like to think, however, that if ever such a book did take place, the cover photo would feature the most sales-friendly and awe-inspiring pose possible: 1970s huge-collared Vince interviewing 1990s Zubaz-pants wearing Vince. On the set of the XFL press conference from 2001. He'd make MILLIONS.»»
- Hey, it's another show I've never seen, so now's as good a time as any to watch it, I guess.
- Live from the Hammerstein Ballroom. This one's certainly got the ECW look down pat. And with the entire show being done in one part on 24/7, the picture is pretty shitty as well, really adding to the low-rent ambiance that ECW put forth so well.
- Your hosts are Joey Styles & Tazz.
- Paul Heyman comes out and cuts a promo thanking the fans for bringing ECW back to life, although his tune would change when he'd get fired yet again a few weeks later and his creation turned into the joke it is today.»»
I'm doing a 180 from my original look at this series, as the light-hearted tone and impressive presentation of the DVD won me over and made me into a fan of the show. Too late to save it, of course, as it was cancelled by the Cartoon Network and died off well before this DVD set came out, but for those who missed it (which is most people), it's well worth a look for comic fans as long as you don't take it seriously, much like the creators didn't. »»
First up, a question via MSN, as blog reader Cheeselog remembers Randy Savage & Sherri confronting Elizabeth during an interview segment after Wrestlemania V, but I don't. Can anyone else recall this and have YouTube footage, perhaps?
On with the mailbag questions...»»
The SmarK 24/7 Rant for War Games!
Well you knew I'd be all over this. The theme this is month is something or other to do with hardcore, but who gives a shit because the upshot is that they're showing ALL of the Wargames matches from 87-2000 during this month. Hells yeah. First up: 87, 89, 92, 93 and 95.»»
BREAKING NEWS! Several people e-mailed me the Mr. Perfect DVD lineup, and it's not terribly exciting. The Bockwinkel match is a good inclusion, although at 60:00 it eats up a big chunk of the DVD time. But really, THREE Bret Hart matches? The Uncensored match was just on 24/7 and it's nothing special. Still, it's only a two disc set because Hennig isn't the A-list guy, so you can only expect so much here.»»
The SmarK Rant for WWE Night of Champions 2008
- Really, you'd think that "Clash of Champions" would have been a better name. I think it's an interesting idea to try to put more focus on the titles by making every match here a title match, but it kind of defeats the purpose when there's so many titles that you can do a whole PPV of title matches in the first place.
- Live from Dallas, TX
- Your hosts are many and varied.»»
The SmarK 24/7 Rant for Champions of the AWA
- I can't remember if I ever saw this one when they were doing the lame AWA "best of" stuff on PPV years back, but it's short so what the heck. The connection with the Gold theme is pretty obvious.
- Hosted by Gene Okerlund, so it's obviously part of that series.
Madusa v. Sherri Martel. From May of 1987. Sherri would have been champion at this point, but this isn't a title match. Madusa's hair is teased beyond belief here. Madusa overpowers Sherri to start and Sherri runs away and seeks refuge with Kevin Kelly. Back in, Madusa takes her down with an armbar. Sherri reverses and works on a headscissors, but Madusa pounds the arm and takes her down for two. Madusa cranks on the arm and pounds away on the ropes, then grabs a headlock. A really bad dropkick gets two. Madusa was clearly super-green at this point. Sherri knees her out of the corner and follows with a small package for two. Weak clothesline gets two. Sherri rams her into the corner for two. Jackknife cradle gets two, but Madusa suddenly no-sells and comes back with a slam for two. Sherri goes low and it's a draw at 7:35. That's a pretty short draw. Madusa was just brutal here, but Sherri held it together well enough. *1/2 Sherri never lost the title, giving it up to jump to the WWF and leaving Madusa to win it in a bogus tournament months later.»»
The SmarK 24/7 Rant for World Championship Wrestling - May 17 1986
- Man, another short show this week. Weren't the Braves usually out of contention by May anyway?
- Your hosts are Tony & David.
- Jim Cornette immediately butts in, offering the "Mama Cass Elliot Workout Tape" to Baby Doll and ranting extra-loud this week about the James Boys and rednecks in general. Man, he's one to talk.»»
So with the HD package I subscribed to came a free preview of all the HD channels for two months, which meant WGN HD and thus I could watch Smackdown in all it's HHHD glory if I wanted. But then Vickie Guerrero came on in 1080i and scared the shit out of me so I stopped watching and switched to HDNet for Inside MMA instead. Granted Bas Rutten looks scary as well at that resolution, but he's supposed to.
On with the letters...»»
The SmarK 24/7 Rant for WCW Thunder - August 13 1998
- OK, so a bit of background before we start. I'm going to assume that not everyone is a longtime follower of my stuff, so let me just preface this review by noting that way back in 1998, when a bunch of us formed an idealistic young wrestling website called Wrestlemaniacs.com (and later CBS Wrestleline.com), my part in the machine was reviewing the most god-awful show to grace prime-time television, aka WCW Thunder, and it became the bane of my existence over the course of the two years that I recapped it. Apparently a lot of people quite enjoyed my pain because my reviews were popular and I eventually took over RAW when CRZ left the site, but Thunder was always hanging over my head like the sword of Damocles or something. So they pulled this one, seemingly at random, to show as part of the "Gold Rush" month because there's a title change on it (a rarity for the B-Show to end all B-Shows, believe me), and I figured "Ah, easy review, I'll just pull up the original review and call it a repost." Well, wouldn't you know, for whatever reason I skipped that week back in 1998. I bet the guys who pick the shows for this channel are just messing with me now.»»
Tomorrow is exciting because I'm finally going HD thanks to Sasktel having a special and Jodi wanting the movie channels for summer vacation! The final piece of my home entertainment puzzle is almost in place and soon the world will be mine.
Anyway, on with the mail...»»
The SmarK 24/7 Rant for WWF RAW is WAR - August 11 1997
- I wasn't really planning on doing this one, but then I read about George Carlin's death and got really bummed out, and I just needed something to cheer me up.
- Live from Biloxi, MS
- Your hosts are Jim Ross, Vince McMahon and Jerry Lawler.»»
The SmarK DVD Rant for Heroes of World Class: The Director's Cut
- So a couple of days ago I did the WWE-ized version of the Von Erich story, and now here's a more objective look at it…
- We start with an introduction to Fritz and his sons, via Kevin (who looks like HELL without the magic of WWE makeup).»»
The SmarK DVD Rant for The Triumph and Tragedy of World Class Championship Wrestling
- Gotta love the overblown titles from the WWE DVD department.
- So as promised, I bought both the WWE version and the Big Vision versions of the World Class DVDs, because I figured that people would want me to do the other one no matter which I picked anyway. Obviously the WWE version holds the advantage in production values and match library, but there's an irritating problem with the 5.1 mix of this disc, as the mood-setting background music often drowns out the interviews. That's the kind of sloppy production problems that they never used to make before they started outsourcing their DVDs.»»
- This is of course the show that eventually morphed into the modern WCW after Vince's purchase of Georgia Championship Wrestling, and it's taped in the familiar Techwood Studios. I don't even know the significance of this episode and how it ties into the Gold Rush theme, but I love random stuff like this anyway.
- Hosted by Bob Caudle and David Crockett.»»
The SmarK 24/7 Rant for Boston Garden - February 8 1986
- How could I pass THIS one up? On the other hand, remember when titles actually meant enough that you could just say "Remember what title changed hands in the Boston Garden in 1986?" and have people know what you're talking about?
- Taped from Boston, MA.
- Your hosts are Gorilla & Jesse»»
The SmarK 24/7 Rant - Legends and Shorties
- Just some odds and ends from 24/7 before the week clicks over again. The Hall of Fame spotlight is on Nick Bockwinkel, and the shorties feature huge title upsets, so I don't really have a connecting thread, but there's a bunch I haven't seen here, so what the hell.»»
The SmarK 24/7 Rant for World Championship Wrestling - May 10 1986
- Your hosts are Tony & no one. Sadly, David isn't here this week.»»
Only two questions this time. Must be a slow week, but that's OK, because I can catch up easier. And since blockquotes apparently don't work on Insidepulse, I can try new and fun formatting of the letters today.
First up, not a question, but a correction from Chris Jericho's editor, Jason Pinter, in response to my calling his book ghost-written.
Hey Scott - Not sure if you remember me, but I used to work at Warner Books and was Chris Jericho’s editor. I believe we emailed a couple of times.
I wanted to correct your statement that Chris used a ghostwriter. That’s not true. Every word of the book was written by Chris, he used what’s called a ‘collaborator’ whose job was to help with organization and structure, not prose. I worked hand-in-hand with them both, and can say with authority that it was very important to Chris that his book not an ‘as told to’ autobio, especially since Chris has a degree in journalism.
It’s a pretty big and important distinction and one that should be clarified for your readers.
I hope all is well, and I look forward to reading your new book.
Thanks to Jason for clarifying that one. I had likely blocked it out of my mind because I was so heart-broken at being rejected by Jericho at the time, but now you know, and knowing is half the battle.»»
Thanks to everyone who's offered their help with designing Dungeonofdeath.com -- I'm still not 100% sure what I want the site to look like, but I'll get back to y'all when I do. If anyone sees any sites they think might look good as a template, let me know so I can stea...investigate them.
On with the mail!
Love the blog. I have a couple of questions for you.
Firstly, do you know what happened to your old buddy Rick Scaia and his onlineonslaught website?
Secondly a couple of weeks ago you were asked what your though the best year to be a professional wrestling fan was. My question is what do you think the worst years have been? I'd say 2002 and 2007 but you have followed the buisness for longer then I have and I'd be interested in your opinion.
No clue what happened to Rick and OO.com. The domain expired a couple of months ago and he kind of disappeared.»»