Wrestling News, Opinions, Etc. 10.29.03


In Memoriam:  Rod Roddy, come on…no, that’s not only cliched, but pretty sick, even for me.  The guy was one of the greatest game show announcers ever, period, and deserves better.  It’s just weird to think that The Price Is Right has been on the air for so long in its current format that it’s had two announcers die on them.  So, just like Rod’s ex-boss Barker tells everyone to spay or neuter your pets, I’ll tell you, in tribute to Rod, to get your nethers checked on a regular basis.  Yeah, a lot of people laugh at (or are afraid of) colorectal exams because of what’s involved.  But early detection is the best way to beat colorectal and prostate cancer, and you need to start younger than what’s recommended.

Oh, Jesus, a public service announcement.  Is that what I’ve come to?  I mean, right now, my biggest worry about my rectum isn’t cancer, it’s the fact that it’s been worn raw by excessive use over the past few days.  I am going to be driving about five hundred fifty miles later today, and thanks to this, it’s not going to be comfortable in the least (and it’ll be damn problematic if I can’t kick the diarrhea before I leave).  A nice long weekend in Chicago to get everything wrapped up there (including Plan B for employment JIC), then back here on Sunday and start the grind up again.  Yay.

So what’s going on other than that?  Let’s have a look and see…


Good old Jim Hellwig did what he does best yet again:  hype, hype, hype, then disappoint.  The Ultimate Warrior’s “return to the ring” will be in a video game.  Even worse, it’s a video game made by Acclaim, a company that has never let quality control stand in the way of a quick buck.  I’m not a really big fan of Acclaim’s releases, shall we say.

Of course, this isn’t the first time Acclaim’s been intimately involved in wrestling.  Forget about their “games” for a moment and remember back to the halcyon days when we could discuss wrestling without it being a pseudonym for “WWE”.  Acclaim, in one of their absolutely brilliant business moves, bought a 10% stake in ECW, providing the most cynical in a long series of Heyman financial rescues.  Of course, you can see from the flood of available ECW video games what it got Acclaim.  In terms of gaming, this was almost as brilliant as Eidos betting the farm on John Romero and, when that came a cropper, pushed Lara Croft so far down our throats that there are many who can’t bear to touch the box of a Tomb Raider game.

So now they want to get back into wrestling.  WWE’s out, completely; they were burned by Acclaim before quality-wise and are perfectly satisfied with what’s being provided to them by THQ.  TNA isn’t well-known enough to support a game, and doesn’t have a star that you can put on the box front and sell the game to the console retards by that alone.  So what’s left?  Hey, Warrior’s well-known!  Let’s get him under contract!

You know, there were some members of the Games crew who asked me, “Geez, if you’re getting sick of wrestling, pull a Grut and come over here full-time”, and I was actually considering it for a few moments.  But then satanic fusions like this occur, and I realize that my place is here in Wrestling, occasionally kibitzing about the game industry.

Or occasionally kibitzing about a show that I don’t really watch anymore…


They’re going to retry doing Angle-Benoit/Cena-Albert again after realizing that maybe, just maybe, last week’s DQ left things slightly in the air.  Unfortunately, they’ve still got Albert in there for some unknown reason.  If they were doing a reset, you think they’d have corrected this glaring error.

Our suspicions are being confirmed:  Haas and Benjamin are indeed being turned face.  Unfortunately, so is Cena.  And Chavito’s being turned heel.  But, hey, we get Nathan Jones back!  Don’t all jump for joy at once; you can knock the Earth out of its orbit by doing that, you know.

We all wondered back in the day what the WWF would have done with the WCW cruisers.  We are now finding out what they would have done.  Witness tomorrow’s Rey-Rey/Dragon match for a good example.

Jesus H. Christ, who’s booking this mess?  The APA in the main event?  TBS in the main event?  Did Leyfield put in a “sell” recommendation on Lesnar Inc. or something?

But there are reasons to watch the show this week.  I can think of two of them off the top of my head:  1) A naked Dawn Marie covered in chocolate and 2) a hot Eddy promo that’s equally as sweet.


Regular Corey Worrell has never had the God Slot before, so it’s his time now, and he knows how to get into my heart by going straight for cartoons:

Me and some people were recently discussing cartoons from our childhood, and the topic of Speed Buggy came up.  Someone said that Mel Blanc did the voice for Speed Buggy, which I didn’t believe.  Lo and behold, IMDB shows that it’s true.  So my question is, how is it that Mel Blanc, the voice of Warner Bros., came to do voice work for Hanna-Barbara cartoons?  Aren’t they fairly big competitors?

Not at the time they weren’t.  Mel Blanc once did have an exclusive contract with Warner Brothers to do cartoon voices.  However, that exclusivity ended as cartoon studios all over Hollywood were shutting down in the late 50s.  Hence, Blanc became a free agent.  Speed Buggy was broadcast in 1973 (the sad part is that I didn’t have to look that up), but Blanc’s work for H-B started long before that (do the words “Barney Rubble” ring a bell?).  In 1973, and even in 1960, WB and H-B weren’t competitors.  WB was doing releases only for theaters; H-B was only working on television.  When WB came to their first TV agreement with ABC in 1960, there still wasn’t competition with Blanc doing The Flintstones because 1) The Flintstones was also on ABC and 2) Except for the voiceover work for the bridge segments, Blanc had already been paid for the original cartoons.  So, no competition.

Of course, today, Warner Brothers Animation and Hanna-Barbera aren’t competitors at all.  They’re the two animation arms of Time-Warner.

Working in that vein, Sam Dawes from over in Comics asks my opinion about anime, and specifically about Cowboy Bebop.  Unlike with puro freaks, I’ve had the occasion to be friends with honest-to-God otaku, so I’ve had attempts to force-feed anime down my throat.  The problem is that I’m the wrong age and the wrong temperament to be an anime fan.  I hated Speed Racer as a kid, and then when my cartoon smarkdom started to bloom, the only widely-available stuff from Japan was Sandy Frankified.  So I never became an anime fan.  There are some exceptions.  Sailor Stars was decent (although they can take the rest of Sailor Moon and bury it in a nuclear waste dump for all I care).  Project A-Ko was damn funny (and I did get a lot of the parody they were going for, courtesy of my otaku friends trying to get me to like this stuff).  Any Dirty Pair is always worth a look.  As for Cowboy Bebop, it was mildly disappointing for three reasons:  1) It was a little too overhyped.  2) It was a little too visually stylized for its own good.  3) The dubbing that Cartoon Network had done really scrambled the storyline to a great extent.  If I’d have watched a fan-subbed version, maybe I could have followed it a little better.

Dave Moore makes a good point:

With all this bullshit that continues to go on in Iraq (bombings, soldiers dying, etc…) do you think that the United States should give up their “hunt” for WMD and consentrate more on Weapons of Less But Immediate Destruction?  I mean, if you think about it, of all the people being killed over there at this point, how many of them have been “biologically or chemically attacked?”  Not one…I don’t believe.  It continues to be rockets, guns and other sorts of bombings.  Not really destruction on a mass scale.  Why do we continue to over look this?

Because if the Junta does that, the American populace would immediately realize that they were bullshitted into this war and ensuing quagmire, and that’d screw the pooch for next year for Dubbaya.  So we’re going to keep having kids killed over there for no damn good reason.  That’s the simplest answer that I can think of.  It certainly matches the cynicism and contempt that the Junta continually shows to the American people.

Jesus H. Fucking Christ, they have people buffaloed every which way just by saying the word “terrorism”.  For instance, yesterday, I attended a video conference with representatives from the Food and Drug Administration.  Courtesy of “terrorism”, there will be new laws kicking in on December 12th that will require all manufacturers producing comestibles (of any type, including dietary supplements and animal feed) to be part of a registry, and will require that any food brought into the country (except for personal consumption) to have advance notification before arriving at customs.  All because there might be attempts at bioterrorism through the food supply.  This is getting to be a bit ridiculous.

BFPIsBuff queries on whether or not I’m a college football fan.  Considering that my alma mater left the Big Ten in 1938, and considering that the nearest college football team to me when I was growing up was Northwestern, I think the answer would be a resounding “No”.  Exceptions are made, of course, and Notre Dame is it.  You can’t grow up Catholic in Chicago and not be a Notre Dame fan.

I’m gonna close with something from Biscuiti, Matt Isomer, who doesn’t get enough column space here anyway, since he’s got some damn sweet booking ideas for SurSer based on the mess at the end of Raw:

Pondering something you said about the Team Austin vs. Team Bischoff match for SurSer.  Do you really think they’re adding everyone from the steel cage beatdown into that match? 

Let’s figure this out… 

RAW closed with Booker, RVD and the Dudleyz being beaten down by Jericho, Steiner, Christian and Mark Henry.  That would lead me to believe that, assuming the Dudleyz and Mark Henry HAVE been added to this match, the fifth member of Team Austin would be Michaels — who would have been in that cage if he wasn’t banned from the building. 

The fifth member of Team Bischoff?  I can’t think of ONE possibility here.  Rodney Mack is hurt.  Test is hurt.  It wouldn’t make sense to just pick one member of Evolution, even though Randy seems to have a beef with Booker, and Batista with Austin — since, again, there are three of them, and they’re issues with Maven/Jindrak/Cade aren’t nearly resolved.  Who’s the next biggest heel on RAW?  Rico?  So unless Test can go by SurSer, I can’t see this going that way. 

Now if you assume that Mark Henry isn’t involved in that match (the story can simply be that he was getting out some pent-up frustration for Austin banning HIM from the building last week), how about this alternative:

Team Bischoff: Jericho/Christian/Steiner/DUPREE/CONWAY
Team Austin: Booker/RVD/Bubba/D-Von/STORM

Makes MUCH more sense, it keeps Storm’s push treading water (plus, he attributes his change in attitude TO Austin, like it or not), and it frees up some wrestlers for THIS match, to be added:

Evolution & Mark Henry vs. Shawn Michaels, Cade, Jindrak and Maven

Again, Henry has been sort of a hired gun for Evolution, he has issues with Michaels that can be blown off here, and it lets FIVE young guys (one of which got trained by HBK anyway) get rub from Flair and HBK. 

Taking it one step further, that would make the RAW side of the PPV this:

(1) Goldberg vs. HHH — World Title
(2) Kane vs. Shane — Ambulance Match
(3) Team Austin (Booker/RVD/Storm/Dudz) vs. Team Bischoff (Jericho/Steiner/Christian/LaRez)
(4) Molly vs. Lita — Women’s Title
(5) Evolution/Henry vs. HBK/Maven/Cade/Jindrak

And it’s okay that the Tag and IC titles aren’t being defended here, ’cause there’s another RAW PPV in December. 

SD’s side of the card is a bit more up in the air, but since I’m fantasy booking here to the point where any chances of this appearing in your mailbag are NIL,

Not when I have a short mailbag and the ideas are this good.

here’s where I see things going there:

(1) Vince vs. Taker — Buried Alive Match (which I think KANE ends up helping Vince win, setting up Kane vs. Dead Man at Mania, but that’s neither here nor there)
(2) A Survivor Series match (hey, Heyman’s not gonna let Austin/Bischoff one-up him here) that I think will go something like this, based on current storylines: Brock/Show/Cena/A-Train/Rhyno vs. Angle/Benoit/Eddie/Chavo/Bob Holly (no, I’m not kidding — but they started that angle, so it has to be blown off SOMEwhere)
(3) Tajiri/Not Yakuza (add Dragon or Funaki to make it four) vs. Rey/Kidman/Noble/Zach Elimination CW Title Match
(4) Tag Title Elimination Match — Bashams vs. Team Angle vs. Too Phat vs. APA vs. Spanky/London, or some combination thereof

Hey, it’s one of the Big Four PPVs, and that’s a super-card getting a LOT of names in, including all of the champions and most people that have been featured lately on both shows (sorry Matt Hardy, but you can always do a run-in or a promo about how you’re overlooked — hey, *I* didn’t write the current storylines, I’m just going with ’em…  and you’ll be glad I left the SHIT off also)…  and bringing back an “Old” Survivor Series feel.  I think that’s the direction they’re going, and I hope so.  It would be fun.

No arguments from me, Matt.  I’d love to see an old-school Survivor Series for a change.  I’d do anything at this point to get rid of the “just another PPV” stigma away from SurSer (and to a lesser extent Royal Rumble).  There’s no real impetus to buy any PPV if the cards are all going to resemble each other.  I’d hold off on “interpromotional” matches until WM, though.  That should be the only time that the two brands should have direct conflict.  SurSer definitely needs a little spark this year, because the “main events” are pretty dire (Trip gets his job back from Goldberg, and Vince makes UT his bitch).  Of course, now that it’s been in this column, it won’t happen, you know that.

That’ll be it from this end.  I’ll be in Chicago until Sunday afternoon, so those of you expecting mail from me, hold your pants until such time.  Until then, I’m going to be contemplating the high probability that if they hadn’t forced me to move here before I started, my return to Chicago would have been permanent…