The Week In Wrestling 4.22.02

NonWrestling Stuff

So long to one of my favorite Lead Singers of all time. Layne Staley of Alice in Chains was found dead this past week. AIC has always been one of my top ten favorite bands, and spent some time in the top slot. After the Unplugged disc came out, I made an argument they were the most talented of the “Seattle Bands.” I still think they were. Please don’t e-mail me about how AIC sucked and Kurt and Nirvana were God and I don’t know what the f*ck I’m talking about. Arguing music is like arguing abortion or religion. No one is ever going to change their minds, and it’s a lot of screaming for no good. Everyone has their own preference. I pass on making a mean joke about them playing “Man in the Box” at Layne’s funeral. RIP Layne may your inner demons not be torturing you now.

So, Asians went to task against Abercrombie and Fitch for a T-shirt that “promoted racist stereotypes of Asian Americans.” You can see the offensive picture here. Now, normally, I’m all about negative press for Abercrombie, because I figure it might get two or three Long-Island-moved-Upstate-New-York College kids to stop being part of the mass of fools who plaster the stuff on themselves (no offense to the LImUNYCk’s who happen to be friends of mine, of course). I guess I can even sort of understand why a group would be offended by it but the list of stuff they want A&F to do to apologize makes me ill I quote: “They read a list of demands including a public apology in four major newspapers, increased philanthropy [goodwill, for you retarded folks, like me] and investment in the Asian community and the hiring of consultants to ensure sensitivity on Asian issues.”

Ah, of course the volatile issue of racial discrimination against Asians. It’s a joke, people calm down. Yes yes feel free to e-mail me with about how I don’t understand the plight of the Asian. I may even respond. And of course, a hefty donation to the Asian-Community will make it all better. Whatever

I rarely buy clothes from Abercrombie but, if anyone can get me this shirt before they pull it from shelves in an XL, I’ll be happy to pay you for it. I would put in a “buy me stuff” link but they’re kinda lame unless they really work hmmm.

And the government issued another one of those blanket warnings to banks in the Northeast. OK with me the only bank I’m close to is a pint sized HSBC in the student union of my school. Everyone expect a national “Call in Sick Week” if they work at a bank good time for it anyway.

Saw on the news there’s plans to set up a National version of NY States “Do Not Call me During Dinner You Stupid C*ckS*cking Telemarketing F*cks” List. Something like 90% of the people in the country polled were all for this out of the 10% who weren’t, 85% of them worked for telemarketing firms. They’ll lose their jobs, you know. Cry me a goddam river. The heads of these firms say such a list denies them their Freedom of Speech and Freedom of Enterprise. They deny me my pursuit of happiness, so I guess we’re even then.

In the ultimate in humor Microsoft said that Passport is safe, secure, and promotes privacy

BWAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAHAHAH

Site Stuff

OK, whichever site person came up with “We Know Wrestling is Fake. So Are Some Boobs. We Enjoy Those Too” gets a HUGE thumbs up from me. I feel somewhat bummed they didn’t come to me for T-Shirt ideas. I’m also surprised there is not one that says “Widro Ownz You.” Anyway, check out the other stuff in the 411 Store.

The No Gimmick Required Column seems like it’s going to be one of those “upper crust” column you know, like Scaia tries but just can’t seem to pull off. If you didn’t know what “philanthropy” meant up above, this may not be the column for you not with out a HANDY DANDY LINK to a dictionary.

Eric S: Yes, that PPV Idea was definitely the best, but more reasonable would be Raw brand, Smackdown brand, Crossover using the “big 4” to actually mean something again. It would mean moving SummerSlam to July (big deal, it’s still the summer) and Survivor Series to October (which doesn’t really matter either, considering they don’t do it on Thanksgiving anymore). 15 people from each roster get to go to the Rumble for a shot at the title. The winner gets to choose a promotion AND his title shot or something and the Survivor Series is self-explanatory. The whole concept of a, you know “Survivor Series” match could be resurrected. But then, there’s also no way they’re making King of the Ring a one promotion only match ‘course, they could really drop it all together since it hasn’t mattered in years, other than to get the Internet all fired up about “who’s going to get the big KOTR push that we haven’t given since Billy Gunn won it.” I also agree that a Rock heel turn is about two years overdue, too. What can I say great minds think alike, even if they come down on different sides of the fence sometimes.

I know I had a wrestling column in here somewhere ah, here it is.

Raw

Ric Flair inserted himself into the Austin/Undertaker match as the special guest referee. He’s also sick of people putting their hands on him. He’s the owner dammit. OK then, how about we make Big Show his bodyguard and GIVE THE GODDAM SEVEN FOOTER SOMETHING TO FRIGGIN DO!!!! HELLO!!!! YOU GUYS HAVE A GUY WHO IS LEGITIMATELY HUGE AND SCARY DOING NOTHING.

At some point during the interview, Hall and X-Pac came out and then Bradshaw and we got some sort of handicap match nonsense. When is theWWF going to start forcing JR to say “physically challenged” match? If they don’t, will Vince have to start donating to the “handicapped community?”

Bubba lost the hardcore title then they decided everyone on Raw from ECW would get to hold it for thirty seconds. Raven won it, then lost it Tommy Dreamer, who lost it to Stevie, who lost it back to Bubba. This title reign was shorter than Tommy’s ECW World Title reign. That’s saying something.

Shawn Staziak’s new gimmick is rhyming when he talks I think. Personally, I think the guy who ran into things and fell over was the best gimmick of his career.

Eddy Guerrero came back because he couldn’t stand seeing RVD using his Frog Splash. Somehow, Eddy’s figured out how to do it without rolling around the ring for fifteen seconds every time he does it. The jury’s still out on whether RVD really knocks the wind out of himself or if he just likes his finisher to look stronger. If you ever notice, pins always come IMMEDIATELY after finishers are hit RVD is the *ONLY* person who has any sort of a beat after his move.

In the funniest moment of Raw (once again centered around Booker T), Goldust came in to speak with Booker about a tag match and did the “Goldust Whistle” thing to which Booker told him “Don’t be up in here with that booker makes the goldust whistle noise stuff, sucka.” I nearly crapped myself I was laughing so hard.

Molly said she’s a virgin. I say Nash Roont her in WCW.

Brock beat up Matt Hardy, but probably not nearly as bad as he’s going to do to Jeff on Sunday. This was because Paul said Brock would go easy on Matt if Lita would do the nasty with him. The difference between Vince being involved in this storyline instead of Paul would be that Lita would leave Matt for Vince and suck his d*ck on camera then help him break up with his wife, who would then return complete control of the company to him. Confused? As you should be, grasshoppers.

Quote of the week still belongs to my friend Doug: “If Brock loses to a Hardy, I’m going to set myself on fire.”

Triple H got a full 15 to sell himself for Wrestlemania. Yeah, they sell him as the face when Hogan’s not around.

Smackdown

Six man tag started thus showing the OFFENSIVE JUGGERNAUT THAT IS ALBERT!!! I leave it to the reader to decide whether or not I meant offensive like football offense, or like smelly, hairy B.O. offense.

Ah, screw it yip and yap about how no one gets pushed they’re trying something new. I’M BEHIND YOU 100% ALBERT! Besides, he kicked Scotty 2 Crappy out of the Worm TWICE. You just don’t get cooler than that, my friends.

Hurricane has cut his hair short and dyed his hair into green spikes. I can see that.

Chavo Guererro had a match (!) well, it was a tag match. He actually came out to Eddy Guererro’s old WCW music, which confused me to no end for a bit. I was outside the room when the music started and spent a good minute looking around the ring for Eddy. It was a tag match with Chavo/Tajiri vs Kidman/Hurricane. It was quite good. Kidman looks to be the big winner at Smackdown, getting the hot blonde yak AND the cruiserweight title. Neat.

Mark Henry continued with the world’s strongest man schtick. See, the difference between old “World’s Strongest Man” schticks and this one is that Miz-ark actually IS legit. I file this in the same position as Albert. Give the dude a chance. He already had people chanting for him to lift the car, so why not?

The mind-numbing push of Edge continues. If you listen really hard, you can hear my brain harden every time Edge is involved in something major.

D-Von gave his first interview in his Preacher gimmick. I think the best part of it was the collection plate at the end. I don’t know if it was plants or not, but some folks actually DONATED. I wonder if D-Von gets to keep it.

HHH foreshadowed his official heel turn on Sunday with a chair shot to Hogan. People turned on him right quickly.

Backlash

I’d like to point out that the best record on the Backlash Roundtable belonged to Gamble who used a magic 8-ball f-er even predicted that Regal/Spike would not be on the card. Right there, he wins. All us “Internet Professionals” lost out to a magic 8-ball go figure.

The show, minus the main event, was a GREAT wrestling show.

Kidman/Tajiri opened up, and for some reason I can’t fathom, they had Tajiri beat Kidman. The crowd actually started to really get into this match and chanted for Kidman for some reason, they took the belt of the charismatic guy who people can get into, and put in on the scary Japanese guy. THIS IS THE WWF’S CHANCE TO MAKE UP FOR ABERCROMBIE!!!! WHO’S THE MAJOR SHAREHOLDERS??!!!! Anyway, I don’t really understand why they would take the belt off Kidman. People in the crowd were silent when he came out, and were chanting for him by the middle of the match. This is the kind of guy they need to build the division around. The best way to do that is to have him hold the belt for a good long time but I understand even less why

They would take the belt off of RVD. I don’t know if this is more of Vince making RVD “pay his dues” or some sort of nonsense like that, but it really doesn’t make sense to me. It’s one of those things where Vince says “he knows what the fans want.” He really must not because they want THIS GUY. Not to take ANYTHING away from the match, mind you the match was fantastic.

The Bradshaw/Hall match consisted of Bradshaw pounding on Hall for the entire match, and then Hall winning with a nutshot. I don’t know if they could make the nWo look any worse if they tried.

Brock, on the other hand, debuted the new gimmick of not actually having a finisher, but just beating a guy until the referee stops the match. Luckily, my friend did not have to set himself on fire.

Angle and Edge was also a terrific match, which saw Angle going over clean.

I want to give a tremendous hand to Chris Jericho to give interviews capable of confounding the “What?” morons. He doesn’t give them a beat to do it, and when he starts to run out of breath, he calls them “idiots” so they boo. They’re so distracted by the booing, they forget for a bit, and by the time they remember, he calls them idiots again. Jericho is my new favorite wrestler.

Undertaker/Austin was a decent match, too. Slow, plodding Undertaker style, but a good match none-the-less. Flair counted three on Austin while his foot was on the ropes. I feel the need to discuss the body-crippling effects of wearing a referee shirt. Flair got the hell beat out of him by the Undertaker at Mania and kept going, but he’s a ref and gets bumped on a simple misplaced elbow. What’s in those shirts? Kryptonite Thread? Anyway, I don’t know if Flair was supposed to stare directly at Austin’s leg on the rope before counting three, though. He definitely looked at it before he started counting. Doesn’t matter they should be able to build a decent story around either.

Hogan/HHH was another surprise (to me anyway) in that Hogan walked away with the belt. Hogan had HHH beat, until Jericho ran in to bump the ref and break up the count then HHH threw him out of the ring, destroying a good possible heel turn. Then HHH had Hogan beat, until Undertaker ran out to cost HHH that victory when Hogan then knocked Taker out of the ring. Hogan then hulked up again and pinned HHH with the legdrop for the belt. The final scene of the show was Undertaker smirking as he walked out. He wanted Hogan to win, but we obviously don’t find out why. That’s possibly the best Cliffhanger the WWF Writing Staff has managed to create this year.

The Week In Wrestling

Backlash baffled me, from a storyline perspective. I can’t complain TOO much about a PPV where most of the matches delivered the goods, though. Angle/Edge, RVD/Eddy, Tajiri/Kidman, and Austin/UT were all between decent and really good. Since no one but Scott Keith is allowed to use stars (because he invented the SHIFT-8 pattern), I will instead use .. hot yaks. Each of the matches rated at least 3 hot yaks, some breaking to 4 hot yaks. In this rating scale, we cannot do fractions of hot yaks, because half a yak just cannot really be hot. If you e-mail me this to argue that point I will have to forward your mail to the proper authorities.

From a storyline perspective, I don’t undertand a lot of what they did. I already sort of discussed Kidman and RVD. The title changes don’t really make sense to me. If they wanted the belt on Tajiri why didn’t they just keep him normal Tajiri that everyone liked? Also, why have Kidman debut and win the belt if you’re just going to job him out at his first big match? He really could have used the win there. Trying to build up a credible superstar just doesn’t happen if you job him out in big matches. The same argument can be applied to RVD. Why in the world would you job out a guy who EVERYONE wants to see as the IC champion? I know the argument has been presented that the chase is more intruiging than holding the belt, but to legitimize the holder, he has to HOLD it sometimes. A decent title reign for RVD wouldn’t have been a bad thing, and the fact that Edward just got back from drug trouble makes me wonder why their already so willing to put their eggs into him.

Hogan now has the belt, which means he gets to be on Raw tomorrow which also means I was officially at one of the only four Raws that he won’t be at. Fabulous. From here, I assume they explain why Undertaker wanted to win the match I guess they hearken a bit back to old school to when Taker first beat him in . 92, I think? Not too sure off the top of my head. Of course, Undertaker has beaten HHH recently, too. If they wanted to be real honest about it, they could have Undertaker cut a promo on Hogan about how “he knows he can beat up an old man. I might feel a little bad about it, but I know I can do it.”

A lot of the storyline stuff at Backlash made me continue to believe they have no idea where they’re going. The title switches seem random with no real force behind building anyone up. All the mid-carders just trade jobs back and forth, with no one really shining as a dominant “next big thing.” Even Jericho, who managed to become the first Unified Champion, almost seems like an afterthought now.

I’m also interested to see what they do with Brock. The guy is managing to capture people’s attention quickly. He needs a beard or something though Something is missing from his look. This is just my opinion. He keeps on pounding people, though, and he isn’t going to stay a heel. I’m interesting in seeing if the “beat people until the ref stops the match” thing was just a Backlash thing, or if they’re really going to do that with him, at least to build him up. Of course, the WWF’s version of “building people up” lately has been just letting them win a few, and then jobbing them out which is, where I think, a lot of their problems are coming from. No one is a legit contender for the top of the card because no one can emerge as a dominant force.

I’m going to try this link one more time about telling the WWF not to let Kid Rock cover “Real American.” I don’t know if it’ll work, but I’ll give it one more shot. Click Here

Till next week then.

End Transmission