Wrestling News, Opinions, Etc. 5.15.02

LET’S START OFF WITH THE PIMP SECTION…

This is to make up for not having one yesterday, even though I’m in the same position right now as I was then (namely, having about one hour to chuck this column out before I have to get to work).

Cole has the International Report on tap.

Nason is ditto on indies.

Murphy goes overboard trying to justify Lance Storm, even though he doesn’t have to, because we all know how great Storm can be given the proper framework.

Stein covers one of my favorite indy wrestlers.

It’s always great to give a pimp to Mahaud, as he covers With Authority.

Daniels is God.

SMACKDOWN’S TOO BORING TO SPOIL, SO I’LL TRY SPOILING METAL

If you want to know what happened on SD, Widro has the results up.  As I said, too dull to even bother spoiling.  Metal, on the other hand, wasn’t covered, and the Observer had spoilers up for that, so here we go…

Albert over Hugh Morrus:  Okay, so Metal’s going to be boring too, but I have to find something to put in here.

The Godfather over Sho Funaki:  No hos, no audience response, no nothing.

Billy Kidman over Chavo Guerrero:  Okay, there’s always one match on the card that’s a reason to watch these shows, and this was it.

Test and Christian over Faarooq and Mark Henry:  Remember a couple weeks ago when I said something about a White Canadians over Black Americans match and there was no racial implications because D’Von interfered on the side of the white guys?  Well, there might be in this one due to Godfather interfering on behalf of Faarooq and Henry.  It makes no sense unless you do bring in nationalism and race.  However, it’s only Metal, so it’s going to be broadcast once and ignored.

DEATH TO TOMMY FIERRO

This match was booked in the wrong direction.  It should have been the Hardys making the challenge and Heyman accepting out of egotism. – Me, in my column published yesterday morning.

I enjoyed the way they built up for the Hardy Boyz vs. Brock Lesnar & Paul Heyman tag team match at the PPV this Sunday. However, it should have been Matt or Jeff challenging Heyman to be in the match instead of Heyman wanting to be in it. – Tommy Fierro, in his 1bullshit column published yesterday afternoon.

You know, I feel ashamed for having that opinion now that Fierro agrees with me on it.  Anything that Fierro gives his imprimatur to has to be wrong somehow.  Look what else the guy said about Raw:

I thought the Tommy Dreamer vignettes were actually pretty funny.

There was nothing wrong with the actual Hulk Hogan vs. Ric Flair match. It was fun to watch.

Trish Stratus & Bubba Ray Dudley against Steven Richards & Jazz was a good match.

I actually enjoyed watching Undertaker tie Hulk Hogan to his bike and ride away with him. It came off looking really good on TV.

I think WWE should let Paul Heyman be in charge of writing the Raw show.

Worst of all, he says all of these wonderful things about Raw, then at the end says the show sucked.  Hello?  If the parts are so good, how could the whole thing suck?  Be consistent, dammit!

Anyone who bitches and moans that I have a column should be forced to read Fierro on a regular basis, and then apologize to me for making that assertion.

While we’re on the subject of Raw, I’ll throw out a You’re A Moron Lite to Ronald Pasquale, who tells me:

Do us all a favor and watch different tv.Alot of us thought it was pretty o.k. show.

You and the elves who reside in your head do not add up to “alot”.  Look, even PK didn’t like it, and he’s a lot more tolerant than I am about WWE idiocy.  If you actually did like it, Mister Pasquale, may I recommend that you watch “different TV” in order to find out what “entertainment” is supposed to be?

WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO ABOUT BOOKER?

Booker’s joining the NWO (maybe) is the big bone of contention this week among fans.  The consensus seems to be that this was a dumb move, and I agree.  Hooking Booker up to this out-of-control car careening down a cliff is no favor to him (a lot like programming him against Flex was, something that I said at the time and people only agreed with in retrospect).  So what’s actually going on?  NaJones has this opinion to venture:

I don’t think Booker T is actually joining the N.W.O. I think next Monday or at Judgement Day they will have Booker T reject the N.W.O. or help Austin get the victory. They only have two top tier faces on the show. One is walking wounded (Austin) and the other one is a mute (R.V.D.). It would be for the best for Booker not to be with Flair.

First of all, I would say that Van Dam is a top-tier face only due to the fact that there’s no one else there.  Now, as to Booker not really being a member, it’s their escape valve.  They can push the abort button at any time to get Booker out.  However, what’s happening here is a balancing act.  The Booker/Goldust sketches may be lame, but they’re getting those two over, especially Booker.  The problem is, I don’t think the braintrust figured out where they wanted to go with the sketches.  Booker and Goldust are residing in their own little world.  They’re not really faces, heels, or even tweeners.  Compare this situation to the Mick Foley/Al Snow situation of a few years ago, where there was a great resolution to a similar scenario.  That situation, though, had a better back-story it could rely upon for the conclusion.  This one doesn’t.

Now, include the NWO, an angle hurting for some spark.  They also need a replacement for Scott Hall.  So, a new member could provide both.  But who to choose?  There are so few people on the Raw roster that the audience would buy as an NWO member that the choice was narrow to begin with.  Bradshaw?  No one’s buying his elevation to upper-mid-card face, so no one’s going to buy a turn.  Van Dam?  No, he’s got to stay a face until this thing with Guerrero is blown off.  UT?  Busy with Hogan, and they’d really need a great rationale on why he’s suddenly buddies with Flair.  That pretty much brings it down to Booker.

But what do you do with him now, and what do you do with Goldust?  That’s a tough question to answer.  They’ve booked themselves into a corner if Booker stays in.  Right now, I’d let the sketches keep going on.  Now Goldust has a real reason to influence Booker:  to get him away from the NWO.  This turns Goldust face and puts him at upper-midcard-level.  Unlike with Bradshaw, this would be accepted by the WWE audience because he’s been there before and made it work (before Russo screwed it all up, of course).  It would add a little tension into the NWO storyline because they won’t know how much they can trust Booker.  If you wanted to appeal to the smarts, have Flair attempt to recruit Goldust into the NWO as a final “in your face” to Fat Dust.  I know, none of these solutions are really great, and none of them would actually help in the long run, but WWE has put themselves into a major hole.  It’s yet another case of them not thinking things through and booking on the fly, believing they can make things right.  Their track record, though, states otherwise.

I’m out of time again.  I’ll be back later this week with the JD Round Table, while Grut will be in this space tomorrow, so until next week, keep reading.