Wrestling News, Opinions, Etc. 1.15.02

Fucking and shooting are the same thing. – Andreas Baader

But people don’t get scared when I threaten to f*ck them through the head.

Welcome to Tuesday at 411, and contrary to the assertions of Aerosmith, I am the new mayor of Truckville. We’ve got a fun-filled show ahead, which is more than I can say for Royal Rumble. Now on with the sad dramatics…

Here’s a tip: never fly out of an airport that had a security scare the day before. The last thing I want to do is to go through a frisk-and-scan at 5:30 in the morning when my belt buckle sets off the metal detector. I need at least three cups of coffee to handle that. Although Mad Props to my main man Rich Daley for renovating that cesspit known as Midway. Can’t wait to see it when it’s done. Oh, yeah, there might have been a wrestling connection to this trip: I swear to God that I took a piss next to Funaki at Hartsfield after I landed. Sure as hell looked like him, but I was running late and didn’t have the chance to confirm or deny. Nor would I have had the desire to do so at that particular location even if I did have time.

THE PIMP SECTION:

Memo to Flea: I did not blow things off. I told the audience I wouldn’t be available for the Wednesday column; I told Widro and Ashish as well. Grut, though, has no excuse. And don’t forget who was the first and only major Internet columnist to do an essay on what a creep Jamie Kellner was before he canned WCW (modesty forbids the mention). Enjoy the Excess update.

(Honestly, I don’t like missing columns. I only miss them due to circumstances not under my control (system failure, lack of access, early flights out somewhere). You think I was happy to have to discard a lot of great Dave Thomas and Buddy Clinton material?)

Mahaud not only did Heat, he’s also going to do Raw this week as well. Good for all of us.

I feel for you, Brower. The Milwaukee UPN station also does Bucks basketball, and we get the occasional SD preempt, which pushes SD back to about 10PM CT. Although they’re better than the Cleveland UPN station, which treated SD as a throwaway when they preempted for Indians games.

The Boss thinks that an NWO reformation can be handled correctly and draw money. I think he’s right, but I have no faith in the WWF to be able to do it, not unless the writing staff’s replaced.

Nason has his usually terrific Indy Spotlight going.

Apology accepted, Daniels. And who’s the yutz who says that alcohol and tobacco should be illegal? Frankly, every time I see one of those Truth commercials, I light up, just out of spite. Also, viz. your NWO comments: you’d have to bring back one other person, and that’s Vince Russo. There were a whole lot of people at the time convinced that Russo’s departure to WCW was orchestrated by VKM to take WCW down anyway, so let’s “confirm” it. Russo’s presence would convince everyone of what a master planner McMahon is.

Rivett likes to get feedback. So go read his column and send him some, okay? My feedback is simple: the backstage group was known as the Clique. Michaels called his fans the Kliq. The lesson here is to never let Milord take the lead on word usage. When someone as smart as Daniels is fooled by that idiot, there’s a problem.

And, of course, Buy The T-Shirt.

You know, I’m the only guy on this site who didn’t pimp the awards. That’s because I don’t believe in them. Everyone here has a different style and different way of approaching things. You really can’t compare me to Flea to Grut, for instance, or PK to Keith when it comes to recapping. We present a number of unique and interesting views here on all facets of wrestling, and all those views are valid and well-presented. To say that one particular person is the best is disingenuous; we’re all damn good, otherwise we wouldn’t be writing here, and you wouldn’t be coming back day after day to read us. In my mind, we’re all the winners, both us, the writers, and you, the audience.

LIKE I’M GOING TO LET UP ON HIM BECAUSE HE FAINTED…

It wasn’t the pretzels that caused Dubbaya to faint, it was the game. It put me in a coma. I should have been prepared. I’ve seen enough Dave Wannstedt-coached teams in my time to know what was going to happen. Ah, but the prexy wasn’t prepped.

Actually, I think the fainting was caused by the sudden realization of how f*cked he is when it comes to Enron. When everyone’s already talking about a cover-up before the investigation even begins, you’re really, really f*cked, especially when shredded documents are being mentioned. Enron is going to do more damage to Dubbaya than ITT would have done to Nixon had Watergate not chased that scandal off the front page (mostly because Dubbaya has pals on both sides and this is in his home bailiwick, the Houston oil cartel). Add this to the fact that the Demos are going to be going out on righteous crusade to get payback for the abuses of process in the Whitewater and Monica messes, and this being an election year, and you can stick a fork in it. Enron gives the Demos back the House in November, period. And there was much rejoicing.

Alex Boothroyd gave me a heads-up on a Dubbaya syntactical incident that didn’t get much pub on this end of the pond, but did in Britain. Check out last Wednesday’s Guardian Online story: http://www.guardian.co.uk/Archive/Article/0,4273,4331726,00.html. Bravo, Dubbaya. That’s the way to treat a Key Ally In The Effort Against International Terrorism. Frankly, what I think should be done about this is that Ari Flesicher should come out and say that, in the interest of remaining neutral on the India/Pakistan issue, His Illegitimacy will start referring to Prime Minister Vajpayee as “the chief dothead”.

UP IN SMOKE

Let’s see, you have a seventeen-year-old boy. Comes from a broken home. Dad is known to be cold and distant, and a little bit eccentric. Dad’s girlfriend makes it a higher priority to know her horses than to know you. Mom died in a car accident and her relatives are either estranged from you or live out of town. Dad’s family has a lousy record of interfamily relationships. Family’s very rich. Older brother is the favored sibling. Now tell me you’re surprised that Prince Harry tokes and boozes. Hell, he’s a character from a Bret Easton Ellis novel. We should be happy he’s not doing blow and smack. As to what might happen to Harry, look up “Prince George, Duke of Kent (1902-1942)”. He’s only one gay relationship with a celebrity away from him at this point.

THE SPORTS TICKER

If I’m John Cook, after that cell phone rang, I would remember that I’ve got a weapon in my hand and thirteen others with my caddy (fourteen if I had Ian Woosnam’s caddy). That kid would be fairway fertilizer…Okay, I have another existential quandary. I don’t want the Bears to have to face STL at the Runway. But I don’t want the Packers to win under any circumstance. This is going to take a while to resolve…I think I know what Shaq was thinking: “Oh, what the hell, it’s only the Bulls.” Well, it’ll be three more games than that, won’t it?…So what is Jerry Rice on and how can I get some?…Agassi pulled out. Serena pulled out. Kuerten suddenly realized he wasn’t on clay. Mary Pierce pulled some rib muscles while serving and quit. Another boring Aussie unless you want to track the Hewitt/Clijsters love match…The Tony Dungy Death Watch has become less interesting with Spurrier committed to Washington…I’m taking bets on which relationship blows up first: Carl Everett/John Rocker or Steve Spurrier/Daniel Snyder…BFM says that if Dubbaya had choked on the pretzel, it would have been the second death caused by Ravens players in the last three years. And people think I’m insensitive…

Time for the Short Form, sponsored today by the letter R and the numbers 0 and 2:

THE SHORT FORM

Match Results:

Tazz and Spike Dudley over Buh Buh Ray and D-Von Dudley, Tag Team Championship Match (Pinfall, Spike pins Buh Buh Ray, victory roll): You know, there’s a saying that comes to mind right now. It’s one of my favorites, from Alfred Jarry: “We will not have destroyed anything until we destroy the ruins.” The WWF is now in the process of destroying the ruins of the tag team ranks.

Chuck Palumbo and Billy Gunn over The Green Hornet and Kato (Pinfall, Palumbo pins Tajiri, Superkick): Sorry, I was too busy playing a game of Civ III to watch this one. Actually, I really didn’t need an excuse not to watch, did I? Two guys pretending to be homosexual, one guy pretending to be heterosexual, and poor Tajiri stuck with them…that’s must-see TV.

Jazz over Jacqueline, Number One Contenders’ Match (Pinfall, Whatever Jazz’s Finisher Is These Days): You know, I turn away just for a second to turn on a light, and the damn match is over. Now just do us a favor and give Jazz the title at RR. Get a little serious about women’s wrestling if you want to broadcast it. Or better yet, actually establish Jazz’s personality as that of serious wrestler by giving her the title and having her balk at doing gravy bowl matches, pudding matches, lingerie matches, etc.

Kurt Angle over Kane, End-Of-Hour Ratings Booster (Pinfall, rope-assisted heel tactics): Glen Jacobs’s role doesn’t call for him to sell very often, but when he has to, he’s very good at it. He’s incorporated a lot of subtleties into Kane that you normally don’t pick up unless you’re watching specifically for them. Think of the AngleLock sequence in the middle of the match here. He sells it just enough to get it over for a television audience. He seems to understand what a lot of performers (and not only those in wrestling) don’t: the difference between stage acting and television acting. When doing a house show, it’s fine to use the extravagant gestures and such. However, the intimacy of a television camera necessitates that a performer tone those gestures down. That’s why a lot of wrestlers tend to look ridiculous on TV; they treat Raw and Smackdown as just another house show and play to the ten thousand in the arena rather than the four to five million watching on TV. It’s fortunate that the WWF has some halfway-decent actors in the troupe. Now if only the rest of them could learn.

Billy Brass Knucks and Test over Rob Van Dam and Edge (Pinfall, Regal pins Edge, left hook): Well, we know who goes over in the IC title match at RR now, don’t we? Read later on in my section about the Ritz Brothers coming back to see my speculation on what happens to the guys in this match. Let’s just say that you’re seeing a bit of the future when watching this.

Booker T over The Big Show (Pinfall, superkick into ringpost): Apparently, the WWF believes that Booker’s reserve of heat is infinite, because they keep sending him against guys who suck heat away like crazy. At least it was a pretty clean pinfall.

Chris Jericho, Christian, and Lance Storm over Bradshaw, Faarooq, and Rikishi (Pinfall, Jericho pins Faarooq, full-nelson face-first slam): Hmmm, Canadian technical specialists go over American power wrestlers (Rikishi is from American Samoa) in Texas, with a Texan on the losing team. There’s some kind of message here, but I’ll be damned if I can figure out what it is. Well, Keith will be happy about the results, and that’s all that matters.

Angle Developments:

Memo To Mister Irvine: When you cut a shoot promo about Dubbaya and Texans (I lived in Dallas for two years; trust me, it was a shoot), it would help your credibility if you weren’t dressed like Bret Michaels from Poison.

Raw’s Value To Science: When women hang around together too much, sometimes they experience a phenomenon called “synchronous menstruation”. Their periods change cycle to align to the alpha female of the group. Steph and Debra, it is apparent, have been hanging around together too much, because both of them needed some serious Midol. I mean, is that any way to treat a legendary Women’s Champion like Harvey Wippleman? Of course, if this leads to the Trip/Steph breakup that we’ve been expecting for so damn long now, that’ll make me happy.

Guess I Have To Retract Something: You know, when I said that the WWF should strive to be like Shakespeare, I didn’t mean for the writers to start scripting Austin’s promos in iambic pentameter so the audience would have natural breaks to chant “What?”. And let it be on record that I said that I was sick of “What?” before virtually anyone else. Ahead of the curve of public opinion as usual, that’s me.

AND IN OTHER WRESTLING NEWS…

Well, the Torch is reporting that the Big Break-Up has been pushed back again, this time until after Wrestlemania. What this indicates to me is that they have no clue on 1) how to do it and 2) what to do with it. God bless the WWF writing staff’s incompetence. Of course, the impending arrival of HallNashHogan and the possible revivification to active duty of Shawn Michaels might have something to do with the delay. Of course the second, it was logical to assume that their entry would be part and parcel of the breakup in order to pop the ratings for the concept and give the audience a sense of familiar ground. You know, if all of us can think of that, why can’t the WWF writing staff?

So what do I think about HallNashHogan? I don’t know at this point. It’s going to have to be handled in a careful manner and with a delicacy that the WWF hasn’t shown in a long time. They’re sticking their head in the tiger’s mouth here, and I don’t know if they have the sense to pull out in time. Nash is the consummate backstage politician. Hogan is the eight-hundred pound orange gorilla. Hall has the uncanny ability to sense power shifts and adjust to the prevailing breeze (when sober and alert). They’re going to want their attention and camera time, and that will be to the detriment of three people in particular: Jericho, Angle, and Benoit (when he comes back). What’s going to happen is a reprise of last March, where you had Austin, Flex, and Trip circle-jerking with each other and Benoit, Angle, Jericho, and Regal fighting almost exclusively with each other. What would I do with the latter four in order to prevent another ghettoization? Well, BFM and I were discussing the possibilities of an Angle/Hogan feud based on the American Icon image both project. Nash and UT feuding is a natural, if only for Scott to whip out the hot pokers. Hall’s promo style would clash with Flex too much; he’d be great for Jericho as a foil, though, or perhaps Booker. The problem becomes, though, that with that much camera time handed out to that group, what’s left for the midcarders? The real losers might end up being Test, Edge, Van Dam and Regal. Expect all of them to start doing tag teams almost exclusively if this kind of situation comes to pass (Note: this was written prior to Raw, and when I saw these guys walk out for their tag match, I got what Hyatte used to refer to as “douche chills”).

I should know better than to (try to) read Tommy Fierro. Seeing his plan to use the Undertaker as a fulcrum to bring in HallNashHogan makes me want to use a sulfuric-acid-infused Brillo pad on my eyes. The fact that he thinks that pushing X-Pac to main-event status is a good idea is so Fierro that it’s almost a cliche (he’s virtually Waltman’s press agent to begin with). Yeesh.

That’ll be it for me. Gotta leave something for myself to write about tomorrow. Besides, I have a backache and want to drug myself to sleep. Enjoy yourselves until then, and remember, you won’t go blind or get hairy palms, but you will get an unnatural smile on your face…