InsidePulse’s WWE Byte This Report: 09.23.04

I have to admit that I’m a huge fan of wrestlecrap, and actively cheer on the really horrendous plotlines because sometimes the bad and the surreal are more fun than the good. No wrestler gave me as much joy and love of Wrestlecrap as Ray Traylor, the Big Boss Man. From eating Al Snow’s dog to reading a poetic tribute to the Big Show’s dead dad, Boss Man was the most outrageous guy in the promotion at one point. When the Corporate Ministry plotline was still going on, I used to laugh my head off at the site of a vampire, a fat mohawked guy, and the Boss Man teaming up to crucify the Undertaker’s enemies. People love to look at those moments as low points and embarrassments, but I don’t think I’m alone in my genuine enjoyment of those segments. I think the ultimate way to judge the success of a character is by the realism they can bring to the most ridiculous scenarios, and Boss Man is an excellent example of someone who could work well within the confines of a silly plotline. I sincerely wish his family any comfort they can find in what has to be a tough time in their lives, and I hope that everyone remembers the Boss Man as fondly as I will.

Generic theme #2567 is cutting in and out pretty badly at first, but then it slowly fades into… Byte This! Josh and Mark are psyched for some Smackdown season premiere action, especially Show/Guerrero vs. Angle/Reigns. They also flip out over Taboo Tuesday and No Mercy, so Josh drops his “Off the chain” catchphrase only two minutes in. Generic corporate hype for… the damn fantasy game! They tease a change of subject, but nope, more fantasy talk. This show is becoming a tribute to this fantasy game. People are having a “blast” with it, and Mark is getting tons of e-mails about it.

Right into the first guest, Tom Barecca! Tom is the big cheese behind the WWE 24-7 service. Apparently, the channel will be showing original programming, AWA, ECW, WCW, WWWF, and more. No Ohio Valley? Oh well. Mark Lloyd thinks his kids will finally know what the hell he’s talking about when he mentions “Rowdy” Roddy Piper. Tom mentions that Tazz is putting together an ECW show that sounds nifty. A cool Monday Night Wars themed show is gonna show what each company was programming against each other, which is way too awesome! Apparently there are gonna be themes to every month, so the opening month will have all sorts of Halloween themed matches. Sweet! I’ll take a little Abdulah the Butcher electrocution, if you please. Oh man, if they own any of Lawler’s USWA stuff they can show those weird Freddy Krueger vs Chucky matches! Was that USWA? Anywho, I’m getting off topic. Sounds like the channel is cable only, no satellite service yet. Old superstars will be hosting shows, but knowing the WWE it’ll just be Sergeant Slaughter and Jerry Lawler. February will be a black history themed month, so expect some excruciating Mr. Hughes and Tony Atlas matches. Mark Lloyd makes a total ass of himself by mentioning that some footage of an AWA battle royal “looks like a battle royal.” Josh tells him it is a battle royal, so Mark says “All the way back from the AWA days! Wow!” A dude from Chicago calls and wants to know if he can get it on his Comcast cable system. Tom tells him to ask his cable company to start carrying it, which I think means no. They attempt to pimp the website for more details, but somehow Josh screws it up and they drop it. A kid named Charles calls and they can’t hear him so they put words in his mouth about how the channel will show old stars. Mark refers to the Vince Sr. company as the WWWE. Christ on a bike, I hate this guy. What the hell else is so important for Tommy Dreamer to be doing besides co-hosting this show? A buried treasure show will have some… I don’t know! Technical problems eliminate whatever he was about to say. The sound comes back in right in time to drop Tom. That 24-7 service sounds totally awesome, I can’t wait to check it out. It’s gonna be “off the chain!”

Quick break, then Droz!

Smackdown anniversary promo with some SWANK footage of the Big Show/Brock superplex. Love that footage!

Droz is… lost in technical problems! They call out for Droz, then Mark pathetically tries to throw Christy into the conversation until finally Josh lets him talk about the Diva Search. They recap the Taboo Tuesday announcement, then pimp the new Smackdown magazine for a second before going back to Taboo Tuesday talk. Mark and Josh think the WWE has never been more interactive with their fans. Out of the blue, Droz clearly says “For some reason I’m not coming through,” but then he’s lost again. Blah blah blah, time filler… and then Droz! He loves Taboo Tuesday, just like all good corporate drones. In the worst analogy I could think of, Josh compares WWE’s attempt at an interactive PPV to the heyday of WCW, saying that the WWE has been getting great ratings and that fans are getting more of a say in the action. Mark and Droz just let that comment drop, which is just as well. Droz also loves Christy, and is glad she won. Of course. Wow, No Mercy is already next Sunday? That’s soon. Droz thinks that Cena will win the last match in his series with Booker, and then Josh drops the bomb… Byte This is moving to Wednesday! Maybe! He’ll announce it on the website! Way to keep us in the loop, morons. Bad Droz segment this week.

Quick break for a Smackdown promo, and they show footage of Stephanie winning the women’s belt, because that amazing wrestling moment is burned in my memory. Damn, then they go and show the Angle/Austin tiny hat moment, which I love! Those two just totally ruled together.

We’re back with just Josh. Mark has something to do so he left, which only goes to show how important Byte This is when the worst announcer in the company can come and go as he pleases. Josh tell us that we’re waiting for Rico to call, then the producer whispers into his ear, then he goes BACK to break and tells us that Shelton is coming up next.

Another Smackdown promo, this time with the time Vince got the stinkface and the awesome “I want a divorce” speech.

Shelton’s on the phone. He’s not worried about getting hurt again, and he doesn’t think it’ll be a problem to get his spot back on the roster. He then goes into character and explains that he likes teaming with Benoit but is wary of Orton because he doesn’t know what to think of his face turn. Josh asks if HHH and he should be the main event at Taboo Tuesday. Shelton’s all for it, but thinks that there’s no way it’s gonna happen. E-mail from Jorge in the Netherlands asks if he sees a tag team between himself and Randy Orton taking off. Shelton does not want to be in a long term tag team anymore. Shelton was flattered when he got a good response at Raw during his comeback, and thinks that the fan’s energy is what fuels him. Very Warrior-like remark, which I am all for. Josh asks him about being #1 in the fantasy game, but Shelton doesn’t even know what that means so he gives a very awkward answer. Josh asks him about Charlie Haas, and Shelton thinks he’s a hard worker but notes that he hasn’t gotten the push he should have. As a last comment, the fans can expect Shelton to make the usual IC belt to Heavyweight belt crawl. Josh dumps him.

Josh explains how a Heavyweight belt can rack up big points in the fantasy game, then drops a “Spin the wheel, make the deal” reference! Man that promo is hot, AND it leads off my bootleg Wrestlecrap video. Me thinks I know what I’m watching before I go see “Dirty Shame.”

Weird 24-7 promo shows a lengthy clip from a Bruno Sammartino/Ernie Ladd match. Hearing little Vinnie Mac imitate Howard Cosell and call Ernie the “Big Cat” is just hilarious. This clip is actually kinda cool, I can’t believe how long they’re letting it go on. Then they show footage of Mr. T and Hulk Hogan buying food at a health food store. T is blabbing up a storm, with the Hulkster barely getting in a word. Apparently Hogan doesn’t like dairy products and thinks “milk is for babies.” Damn, these two are hilarious. T is making jokes about smoking grass and Hogan is genuinely losing it. How two men buying food can be so funny is beyond me, but I’m pretty lowbrow. They begin eating bananas like Cookie Monster and drinking a health drink that they totally hate, which makes them crack up even more. Just awesome, five full minutes of great old school shiznit. That channel’s gonna rule!

Adam calls in and can’t wait for No Mercy. I have to admit, I’m usually pretty cynical about the callers being Vince’s office employees, but they’ve all sounded real today. Even this kid, who is shilling his ass off for the fantasy game and the Undertaker/JLB match, sounds like a real fan.

Josh promotes No Mercy and suddenly realizes he is giving away plot points from the unaired Smackdown, so they cut to…

Billy Kidman! Josh immediately asks Kidman why he’s been a quitter lately. Kidman thinks that fans are labeling him because they are lazy and unappreciative. Josh asks him about Chavo, so Kidman talks about how he would never want to hurt anyone and thinks that fans are too bloodthirsty. Josh asks him how Paul London has reacted to his behavior, and Kidman admits that he has been avoiding Paul and most of the other wrestlers as of late. He also thinks that Paul is a fool to expect him to be reliable when there is something so emotionally draining going on inside his head, and it’s Paul’s fault that Kidman has been bailing on their matches. Josh asks Kidman what he wants to do now, but Kidman isn’t that specific about anything besides ditching Paul as his partner. Kidman can’t believe Smackdown is five years old, and he’s been on it for three of those years. Kidman has talked to Chavo a few times since the injury, but doesn’t know what to say to the guy. Billy can’t believe he’s becoming the bad guy in the fan’s eyes just for not wanting to do his dangerous finisher. Kidman doesn’t think all of the Tough Enough guys put together have been worth a million dollars, and thinks it’s stupid to give a huge payout to some guy who might not even turn out to be reliable or a money maker. The Shooting Star Press came from Kidman’s diving years, and knew the move could translate to wrestling when Kanyon showed him a clip of Liger doing it to Benoit. Josh wants Kidman’s A game at No Mercy, but Kidman doesn’t want to even wrestle at the PPV because his head is in a bad place. Josh drops Billy, and wants some applause from the studio guys for doing the show by himself. I like Kidman’s new jaded side, but his matches have been sloppy and boring lately so I hope he hasn’t found his character just as I stop liking his in ring work.

Show ends with Taboo Tuesday announcement.

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