While other Internet Wrestling Personalities wonder “Can this marriage be saved?” (the answer: yes, at Wrestlemania, and wouldn’t it have been more fun if Pritchard dressed up like Brother Love again to officiate on Raw instead of Generic Preacher?), I will delve into other things…
TODAY’S OFFICIAL OLYMPIC BONER BABE
Jamie Sale, Canada, silver medal, pairs figure skating (along with partner, who can be disregarded). I’ll jump on this bandwagon and send some LUV north of the border. And thank you, Jorgen Thue, for the pics of Kari Traa. Wow.
MEMO TO STEPHANIE MCMAHON
It’s bad enough that you’re booking the WWF. Do you have to book Olympic figure skating on the side? Yes, Steph, it’s no secret to me that you booked the pairs finals. Your trademark “screw the Canadians” moment made it as obvious as the final skit on Raw. And God knows how you found judges who are bigger morons than your fellows on the booking committee. Did you advertise for them on monster.com too?
So, anyone want to bet that the impending “investigation into judging” by the International Skating Union produces less substance than Ken Lay’s testimony in front of Congress?
MEMO TO AMERICAN SPORTS FANS
Picabo Street didn’t medal. Jonny Moseley didn’t medal. Since those are the only two Olympians in action over the past twenty-four hours that you might have heard of, you can just ignore the fact that the US won gold and bronze in the men’s 500m speed skate and a silver by someone other than Jonny Boy in the men’s freestyle. You can also ignore the fact that they’re partying in the streets of Tallinn to celebrate Estonia’s gold and bronze in the men’s 15K classical cross-country. Congrats to all of them, and to the cute French chick who won the downhill.
“BUT IT’S LIKE JOSHI, ONLY WITH A FORTY-TWO POUND STONE!”
Can there be any more of a mindf*ck than the four words “Japanese Women’s Curling Team”? I was actually watching their match against the US on Tuesday, for some unknown reason. You know, people complain about the reality-distorting properties of wrestling. I think that only wrestling fans may be able to traverse the areas between superstrings that provide a home for Japanese women who curl. And only people who listen to Ross, Cole, and Lawler for four hours a week can cope with the announcers playing off the US win on the last slide or whatever it’s called like Adam Vinatieri’s field goal at the Super Bowl. Although the US did come back from a big deficit and made an almost-impossible play…oh, shit, now I’m getting brainwashed by NBC. Need a counter to this, quick…got one. Is there any more appropriate place to play curling than the Ice Sheet? Think about it for a second, then you’ll get it.
MEMO TO UNCA ED
Ostermeyer, you’re the only guy here who’s more of a deve than I am. I haven’t seen Janet Lynn lately, but Hamill didn’t knock my socks off at the Opening Ceremonies, and I wouldn’t f*ck Tonya Harding if I was wearing a full-body condom. Maud Adams and Jill St. John are hotter Bond Chicks than Joanna Lumley was, admittedly (and how could you leave out Barbara Bach?), but Joanna is it for me. Honor Blackman as Cathy Gale beats out Honor Blackman as Pussy Galore, though. Agreed about the IOC; however, let me make an observation that it’s all right to f*ck pigs when you are a pig.
MEMO TO LETAWSKY
A lot of the “innovative” things in Max Payne, including bullet-time, were actually done first by other games (Hitman, for one). You’ve got to get the full version of SimGolf, no matter how many people you shoot to get it. And the left-handed compliment about last week wasn’t out of lack of being impressed (I was). It was…how to describe this…it was like seeing an altar boy get schnocked on sacramental wine during mass and attempting to rape a statue of the Virgin Mary.
MEMO TO RIVETT:
You know, it’s perfectly fine not to have an opinion on Goldberg. Personally, I don’t think I’ve ever had one.
ACADEMY AWARDS TICKER…
How nice to them to clear the decks for A Beautiful Mind, huh? No, they’re not going to give it to Lord of the Rings despite the thirteen nominations…And they’re certainly not going to give it to Moulin Rouge…Damn you, Russell Crowe. For the second year in a row, I’m picking him for Best Actor, and for the second year in a row, I’m going to be right. He pulled out the versatility card, he’s popular in the community, and he’s in the right movie…Opie for Best Director for the same reasons as Crowe…Fuck you, Ridley Scott. Last year I picked you, you didn’t come through, so you get the shaft this year…Same with you, Dame Judi. I’ll go for Spacek for Actress…Titled Brits the rest of the way, though, for the Supportings. Dame Maggie gets her third little gold statue for Gosford Park (and Altman gets thrown a bone at the same time), and I’m still split on Sir Ian and Sir Ben (who seems to get a nomination near the beginning of every decade whether he deserves one or not)…Ah, hell, they gotta honor Lord of the Rings somehow, so give it to McKellen…Speaking of Ben Kingsley, though, another performer is following in his footprints. Marisa Tomei’s nod is the “We’re Going To Justify Ourselves” nomination. You see, a lot of voters were being questioned about the Gandhi win for Kingsley, so the next chance the Academy had, he got nominated again (for Bugsy). Everyone’s still going “Huh?” about My Cousin Vinny, so now that Tomei’s pulled out a quality performance, she gets nominated, and the Academy can say “See? We told you she was good!”…Screwings: Shrek (should have received Moulin Rouge‘s nomination for Best Picture; Best Animated Feature is a booby prize), Will Smith (if not for Crowe, he’d be my pick), Gene Hackman (marvelous in The Royal Tenenbaums, but Sean Penn got the Cliff Robertson Retard Role nomination)…In the interest of full disclosure, I will say that I was three of six in my predictions last year (nailed Picture, Actor, and Actress; missed Supportings and Director, and two of those were because I was expecting more of a Gladiator sweep), so don’t necessarily bet against me.
ONE MORE MEMO, TO “MIKE”, A DUMBASS COWARD MAILING ME FROM A YAHOO ACCOUNT
Oh, yeah, the Secret Service is really going to take my “assassination threat” against Dubbaya seriously when I also “threatened” to assassinate Juan Antonio Samaranch, John Williams, the Child of Light, and Katie Couric, among others, in the same paragraph. Your logic is also flawed. In order for me to “disrespect the president”, I would have to respect him in the first place. Schmuck.
YOU’RE A MORON: THE FALSE CHARGE
MPredooo@aol.com, a.k.a. Marco the Moron, almost became the first two-time winner of this glorious award (want me to send you a scan of my DD214, bitch?), but I’m going to have to give it to this short but stupid missive from Michael Gleason:
Why do you watch wrestling? You care nothing about it.
Excuse me, how do you know I care nothing about wrestling? Because I criticize it? Look, when something deserves criticism, I criticize it, pure and simple. Are you telling me that every site should be like a mini-wwf.com, or even worse, a mini-1wrestling? We should all be cheerleaders for every wet fart that the WWF throws our way, begging them like Oliver Twist asking Mister Bumble for another crust of stale bread to keep on doing what they’re doing? Right now, the WWF, by any reasonably objective criterion of entertainment criticism (obviously, there are no purely objective criteria; criticism by definition is subjective to some degree), is lacking in entertainment value. Ever since wrestling became sports entertainment, it took on the obligation of being judged as a form of entertainment, not as something sui generis. As entertainment, the WWF at this time is poor at best, even given its own format. Do you really want me to justify the Invasion? Do you expect me to say that I’m going to think that the NWO revival is going to be the greatest thing since sliced bread given the track record that the writers and bookers have had in the past year? Think again.
I get at least two letters a week asking me why I can’t do a column of nothing but stuff I like about wrestling. Here’s why: a column about what I like about wrestling would be boring. I prefer to write about things that I don’t like. It also acts as a counteractant to mindless sheep and cheerleaders like the Tommy Fierros of the world (and some people on this site who shall remain nameless). I am a human reality check. Because of that, Mister Gleason, I submit to you that I, in fact, care more about wrestling than you do, because I want it to thrive, grow, and evolve into something richer. You, on the other hand, are simply satisfied with whatever Vince, Steph, Heyman, and the gang of idiots deigns to present to you. It’s your satisfaction with the status quo that is causing the WWF to not make changes and keep presenting the garbage they have been week in and week out. If the WWF was doing a good job entertaining people, the ratings wouldn’t be stagnant, they’d be growing. They popped another 4.4 for Raw this week. Present something that the audience can get into, and the audience will come. They aren’t. Do you want me to disguise that fact? Numbers don’t lie.
Let me keep it simple for you, since you seem like a simple person: I criticize wrestling because I love it, not because I don’t.
Now it’s time to give out some of my unique love by spoiling Smackdown et al for you:
A DULL SHOW SPOILED
Yes, you can go over to the main page and read what Widro cut and pasted from Rajah, or you can get a valid interpretation of the show so you don’t have to waste two hours on Thursday night. I’d rather you stick with me.
The first part of last night’s festivities saw Heat being taped, so let’s go through that first…
Heat Match Results:
Diamond Dallas Page over Christian, EuroStrap Match (Pinfall, Diamond Cutter): Christian’s temper tantrums do him in again as the losing streak continues. Maybe a negative push can work with the guy, maybe it can’t. The fact is, though, that Christian’s heat was killed because of the blown break-up with Edge, and it’s going to take more than this to get it back.
Jazz over Molly, Women’s Title Match (Pinfall, Fisherman’s Buster): I pushed for Jazz to get the strap, but I also pushed for someone to be set up as appropriate competition for her (namely Jackie). Making Jazz into an unbeatable champ poses a major problem in the women’s division because there are so few candidates for a Maven-type upset win against her. Molly’s just about the leading one considering Lita’s rocky relationship with the Fed right now. I don’t have a clue what they’re doing with the women, and neither do they.
Rikishi over the Big Bossman (Pinfall, Banzai Drop): And people wonder why I don’t watch Heat.
Albert and Scotty over Buh Buh Ray and D’Von Dudley (Pinfall, Albert pins Buh Buh Ray, vertical splash): As the death spiral for the tag team scene continues. Highlight of the match is My Beautiful and Beloved pulling down Taylor’s pants. Hope she disinfected herself afterward.
Smackdown Match Results and Other Events Of Significance:
Starting off, Steph throws a tantrum, and does a much better job at it than Christian. It’s Valentine’s Day, and nothing says love like a marriage going to hell. Of course, she turns to Daddy in her hour of need, so the reconciliation on that end continues. They then book the main, with UT and Angle, who, of course, have always supported her, against Trip and Maven. Think about the fact that, of these four, Maven is the only one who’s holding gold right now, and abandon your defenses of the WWF.
Test and Booker verify that they’re going to be challenging Tazz and Spike for the tag titles at No Way Out, and Booker gets the prep against Spike tonight. Meanwhile, the Godfather’s offering a two-for-one Valentine’s special, apparently on venereal diseases.
Spike Dudley over Booker T (Pinfall, blown superplex): Normally, I’d say that this was a sure sign that Booker and Test were winning the tag titles on Sunday. I’m not certain about this one considering that Spike’s and Tazz’s push are based on them being the Little Guys That Could. Also, they seem to be continuing that experiment to find out how much heat Booker can really generate by draining it away from him constantly. The good news is that if Booker and Test lose, it could lead to the much-needed Booker face turn. So, I’m ambivalent about this.
Jericho’s ego flexing has comedic consequences as Flair attempts to give him the night off in order to keep him away from Austin’s wrath, Jericho refuses, then changes his mind, thus forcing Flair to change his mind about giving Jericho the night off, and giving him a non-title against Kane instead. This promo I’ll stay up late for. It’s an honor to see two masters at work.
Chuck and Billy are each other’s Valentines and say it with chocolates. Faarooq and Bradshaw do not reciprocate, although I think it’d be an appropriately manly gesture to give your best male friend some beer and cigars tomorrow. Nothing says “I love you like a fellow male” than cirrhosis and respiratory disorders.
Chuck Palumbo and Billy Gunn over Faarooq and Bradshaw (Pinfall, Gunn pins Faarooq, Anthrax Ripple): Maybe I should use “cockroach cluster”, “spring surprise”, or “Crunchy Frog” to designate a weighted box of confectionary being used as a foreign object considering the lingering sensitivities of the audience. On second thought, screw the audience.
Austin promo. You can probably write one by yourself that would be just as good at this point.
Billy Brass Knucks over Val Venis (Pinfall, use of a combination of copper, zinc, and fist): Venis and Coach both get worked over by Regal’s knuckle-duster, Edge gets his in, and the IC strap match between Regal and Edge is now a Brass Knucks on a Pole match. Yeesh.
Austin and Jericho share a beer and threats backstage.
Goldust over Yoshihiro Tajiri (Pinfall, Curtain Call): The highlight here is post-match, as Dustin sets up Torrie for a Shattered Dreams before the inevitable Van Dam run-in. Good that it wasn’t finished, because Dustin might have got his foot stuck up there.
Sunday, it’ll be the Battle of the Whiny Bitch Tag Teams, as the Dudleys, the Acolytes, the AGD, the Other AGD (Scotty and Albert), the Other Other AGD (the Hardys), and Lance Storm and Christian face off in a Tag Team Turmoil match to determine the Number One Contender for the titles at WM.
Kane over Chris Jericho, Non-Title Match (DQ, belt shot): Austin run-in after the match. Time-filler, really.
UT and Angle pledge fealty to Vince before going out to face Trip and Maven, and the WWF Desire video gets desecrated by an NWO promo.
Trip and Maven over Kurt Angle and the Undertaker (DQ, Angle chair shot on Trip): Nice violent ending to the show, as complete mayhem reigns afterward involving Flair, Vince, and the Special Guest Ref for the Trip-Angle Match at No Way Out, Steph. I may have to revise that “reconcile by WM” prediction at the top of this column. A pretty good match from the looks of it.
AND IN OTHER WRESTLING NEWS…
1bullshit is forwarding some clarification on the WWF/DirecTV “deal” from the AP wire. The deal is an interim one only, in place until Hughes and EchoStar (parent company of DirecTV) complete their upcoming merger. The numbers, though, tell the whole story. Supposedly, DirecTV subscribers account for 15% of WWF PPV revenue. The WWF lost about US$6M due to their loggerheads with DTV so far, and with WM coming up, it was in the best interest of everyone involved to get something in place.
Your Jakked/Metal fodder for this week will be the following: Val Venis over Crash Holly, Billy/Chuck over Scotty/Albert in a Queens of the Lot match, the Big Bossman over Perry Saturn (he’s still working?), and Lance Storm over Sho Funaki in what would be a sub-main in any Fantasy PPV in the Smark Universe.
Someone, somewhere should compile a list of markets where SD can be preempted for sports so we don’t have newsbreaks saying that such-and-such a city won’t be showing SD at its normal time and be surprised. I know about Milwaukee and Cleveland from personal experience. Los Angeles is definite, even with a switch of stations to UPN in progress in that market. STL doesn’t have a UPN affiliate and won’t until later this year. If you get SD preempted for sports, write me. I want to get this together.
That’ll be it for me. I’ll hand the keys to this rolling wreck over to Grutman (who says he does read me, and I believe him) and see if I can get my sleep cycle back in order. Until next week, enjoy yourselves, enjoy No Way Out, and stay tuned for the Round Table, Smackdown recaps, and our weekend festivities. Out.