The Little Things 05.03.03: Cena, Kendrick, Angle & More


Let’s Do This.

For those who missed the memo (which was not sent out so it’s not your fault), this column is now a SmackDown!-based column until I can get my schedule in order and watch RAW regularly again. I would be half-assing it even more than usual if I wrote a column based on the last 30 mins or so I caught on Monday.

We’ve Got A Little Problem

Regrettably, some famous IWC personalities have been taking the name of my column in vain. Thus, I must take some space to teach them how to properly use its founding principles.

First, from his regular Tuesday feature “RAW Thoughts”, which you can only get by becoming a registered member of My 411, Ashish writes:

Why was Kevin Nash WALKING as he “chased” Triple H? Why wouldn’t Eric Bischoff just tell Trish that she could have the rematch with Jazz if she spent the night with him, rather than put himself in a match to earn the night? It goes on and on, each and every week. Little things like that DO make a difference.

Well, the answer to the first question is easy – his leg is still sore. Or, maybe, Kevin Nash has such a menacing gait that he doesn’t need to run to make others run? He is a pretty big guy…I’m sure I’d run if he were after me. Bischoff made Trish wrestle with him? Well yeah, it gives him an opportunity to do some additional humiliating. Come to think of it, why don’t people on this website understand the principle of men in power wanting to humiliate and manipulate attractive women? I’m not saying it is right or anything, but it’s not unheard of. Especially from guys like Vince and Bischoff. The Hyatte in me thinks that maybe it is because a lot of IWC personalities have no power or access to attractive women, but that does not represent the rest of me, which is more or less nice guy. Besides, everyone should be thankful that he made the match, because he used the opportunity to perform THE CRANE, which definitely popped the crowd and made at least me smile. You bet your money I would have written that up if I were still on Monday duty.

It doesn’t stop there, though. Let’s hear from the originator of attempting to ruin your television viewing experience. From his Backlash Rant:

There used to be a time when TSN pre-empting RAW for hockey would piss me off for days, now I’m more curious about whether Anaheim can go up 3-0 on Dallas than I am about whether Nash & HHH will reconcile. And when were Nash & HHH ever FRIENDS in the storylines, to begin with? It’s all the little things like that which annoy me the most

Geesh. I know this isn’t Shakespeare in terms of riveting or interesting stories, but I’m pretty sure I remember Kevin Nash cutting a promo during the Richmond RAW that I attended explaining how him, HBK and HHH used to be friends but now have let divisiveness ensue over the years. Yes, back in the ancient days of kayfabe they were never friends, yes I’d rather see other wrestlers like Booker and RVD involved in this angle, but WWe did make an attempt to explain the situation to the 95% of the audience who aren’t nerds. Therefore, it makes no sense to call out WWe on inconsistent, nonsensical stories when they are not in violation. Interestingly, I feel that the same alledgedly nonsensical story could be applied to wrestlers like Rhyno, Benoit and Eddy and I’m sure there would be dramatically less complaining.

Little Things like being nonsensical annoy me as well. Part of me, in fact, is amused at how the Kliq or Clique or Click or whoever grates at the IWC’s nerves and causes them to get their panties in a bunch over something as simple-minded as professional wrestling. It almost makes me want to pull for them. If Dennis Miller can now admire Dick Cheney as a “man who made his own living”, then what is stopping me from admiring the Clicksters as some good old-fashioned self-preservationists?

Remember folks, the little things are just like any other thing in life. It’s all about how you look at it. Perspective! You can choose to beat your head against a wall over how HHH and his buddies are ruining your wrestling experience or you can enjoy the antics of Matt Hardy, John Cena and Chris Jericho with equal weight. It just might make your day better hell, it may even help you get along with your loved ones.

You don’t believe me?

Patching Things Up

I received this e-mail from a reader last week, name withheld upon request.

I’m a 25 year old female who was insanely obsessed with wrestling a few years back, but then quickly became disenchanted with a lot of the bullshit that was going on, and finally stopped watching altogether. My husband has cajoled me into watching a bit now and then, and I couldn’t see ANYTHING positive about any of it. I whined and complained and got accused of ruining it for him too.

I then started reading 411 again and came across your column. And time and again I kept finding myself saying, “You know, he’s got a point.” Even with superstars I can’t STAND, you find things in them that I can’t deny, and that makes it that much easier to watch, and I’m even starting to become a real fan of certain aspects of the product again. Thank you for reminding me that sometimes you have to take a step back from the overall-lousy big picture and see the small, enjoyable things. It’s done wonders for me, and even my marriage. =)

I have no reason to doubt the authenticy of this e-mail or the profound message that it speaks.

Readers’ Picks: How (Proto)Typical

As I break my readers in for the inevitable onslaught of praise directed towards John Cena, we highlight a piece from his rap that was picked up on by University of Texas reader Jim Heath:

One Little Thing I noticed about Cena’s rap:

“I’m the New Big Thing,
You’re not even a Prototype.”

John Cena was the Prototype (a killer cyborg character) in his indie days. I was a little surprised Scooter didn’t mention it in his Rant, but then again he’s even criticizing Benoit now, so I guess he’s beyond the point of no return

The reason is because Keith and his ilk would rather bash the product than focus on anything good. What this does prove beyond a shadow of a doubt is that Mr. Cena is writing his own material and devoting an insane amount of attention to detail to it at that. This is why him and other wrestlers on his level never get old – they offer something interesting to the audience every single week.

And to top it all off let’s look at the Little Five for the 5.1.2003 edition of SmackDown!:

1. Name That Tune

I’m still starting off very general as I enter my second week of analyzing SmackDown! and part of that process is simply listing some SD! entrance themes that I like. One that always gets me going is Chris Benoit’s “Shooter” theme. I won’t even try to explain it, I just dig the tune.

Speaking of themes, even though nostalgia has gotten from some within the IWC, if you don’t get a certain warm feeling inside when you hear Rick Derringer’s “Real American”, then you suck. I won’t bother explaining that one, either.

2. Old Glory

I surely hope that I was not the only impressed by the Kurt Angle vignette that aired. WWe’s video production team has been a real roll lately and this NFL Films-esque tribute to Kurt was an excellent way to keep the Olympic Hero on our minds and deliver a few laughs at the same time as it was very over-the-top. I was specifically impressed with the voice of the narrator as well as the 1970’s-style lettering used to spell his name. Good Stuff.

3. Let The Fireworks Begin

Again, still simple. I hadn’t been watching so maybe I missed when this started, but simply adding some fireworks to Brock’s entrance/leap into the ring creates a great visual to go with that video work and music that typically accompanies him. It was the first time I had seen it and I liked it.

It doesn’t take much to please me.

4. Picture Perfect

Speaking of ways to keep Kurt Angle fresh in our memory, isn’t it a really nice touch to bring out the Angle portrait during Team Angle matches? With Medals along the corners even! I also liked how the Guerreros used this as an opportunity to demonstrate their kleptomania, but part of me wanted to see that picture defaced in a similar vein as Chris Jericho did to the Dean Malenko portrait back in their WCW days. Who knows, maybe I’ll get my wish soon, especially if WWe wants to go full throttle with the ethnic stereotypes and get some graffiti action on that picture.

Wouldn’t put it past them.

5. Droppin’ Beats

A promo with a wrestler dressed up as Flava Flav, a ref doing a very impressive job of beatboxing, a spin of the record off another wrestler’s head? Ah, the makings of a very entertaining promo and one that did an excellent job of setting up a feud between the spunky kendrick and the heel Cena.

However, I believe my favorite little thing about this segment and most of his segments nowadays is the beginning where he says “Yo yo kill the beat”. Certain heels like Rick Rude, members of the n.W.o. and Road Dogg to name a few always seemed more heelish (and cool) in my eyes when telling the audio guys to turn their music off. Cena’s got it down pat too in his own way.

Keep the feedback coming in and I’ll see you next week.