No sweet 24/7 clip to open the show today.
Generic theme #820983 brings us to… Byte This! Oh, wait, I’m wrong, here’s footage of Roddy Piper vs. Goldust from ‘Mania XII. Marc Loyd breaks in and he’s already lost his voice this week. He still pimps the 24/7 channel, the Piper’s Pit at ‘Mania XXI, Jericho’s ‘Mania announcement next week, and then he announces Josh Matthew’s replacement(!!!!), Steve Romero. Steve hoped that Marc could help him through today’s segment, but if that’s not in the cards, then he’ll just have to mention his previous affiliation with NBC’s NFL broadcasts. Marc briefly talks about the Angle/Michaels rivalry, mentions Christian and Teddy Long as tonight’s guests, screws up the phone number, and goes to a break.
So it’s a Hogan promo, but I have something on my mind. Byte This has been pretty sub par for a long time, but occasionally they’ve pulled some good episodes out of their hat. A big part of those episodes was Josh Matthews, an announcer who constantly improved and seemed genuinely interested in wrestling despite his unfortunate association with new guys who obviously had no previous interest in the pseudo sport, guys like Marc Loyd and Todd Grisham. Josh endured the brutal ribbing of Tom Prichard, the never-ending ECW stories of Tommy Dreamer, the hilarious “pretty boy” jokes of Tazz, and even the total ineptitude of his recent cohost, Marc. Suddenly, WWE thrusts Steve Romero, a nobody who I know nothing about, into Josh’s role and now the show is on totally unknown ground. Considering how sloppy a lot of recent episodes have been, most new fans would probably be optimistic about such a shift. I have been watching Byte This long enough to know it is virtually nothing like the original year at this point and I wouldn’t be surprised if these two end up driving the show into the ground. Steve… no wait, Mr. Romero, I beg of you, please prove me wrong.
We are back and Droz is on the line. Droz thinks that Hogan was an inevitable choice for the WWE Hall of Fame. Steve wonders if Droz has a favorite Hogan moment, but Steve hasn’t realized yet that Droz never watched wrestling growing up, so he tells us it’s Thunder in Paradise. Marc asks Droz about the Austin/Piper segment on this year’s ‘Mania, and little Steve says “Stone Cold Steve Austin” at the exact time as Marc. Droz says all the usual crap about how “great” everything is. Droz also thinks that the Shawn Michaels/Edge match from Monday was a totally sweet bloodbath. Steve asks about Kurt Angle’s involvement but Droz’s phone cuts out in tonight’s first audio f*ck up and he fades away like the voice from another dimension in that old Twilight Zone episode. They try to cover with generic talk, and Steve pretends that Smackdown isn’t taped after Josh had already established that it tapes on Tuesdays. Marc brings up Batista but Droz is back so Marc repeats everything he had just said. Droz doesn’t think Flair has a prayer against Batista and he’ll probably turn on Triple H as well. That’s fine and all, but he should have turned back in late summer when Orton confronted him about Triple H being selfish, and I don’t think it’ll matter much if they do it now. Just my opinion…
JBL/Cena talk goes nowhere and Droz goes into total hyperbole mode as he drools over Wrestlemania, and Steve joins in with more nothing comments. They begin to blab over the dang fantasy game, and Steve reminds Droz that they had met when Steve was commentating during a Brochos/Dolphins game in 1997. Marc seems to somewhat resent this connection, so he drops Droz and they go to break.
Promo parody of A Few Good Men. Screw putting Cena in movies, JBL’s the actor of the two!
Teddy Long is on the line when we return. Apparently he is quite happy that Carlito Cool was not successful in getting him fired. He believes he’s been pleasing the fans, and that’s all that’s important. He was disappointed that Batista didn’t want to jump to Smackdown, but as a fan he was happy to see he chose to fight Triple H. An e-mail fan wonders what Teddy would like to achieve in the future, and he immediately answers that he’d like to be behind the scenes someday. Teddy reminds Marc that they used to talk about cardio with each other, and that’s how Teddy knew that they would get along. Another e-mailer wants to know who Teddy liked to manage the most, and he immediately answers Doom. He thought that “Mean” Marc Callous was another good guy to manage, especially considering what he would become in the future. They talk about Teddy leaving Farooq on the side of a snowy road one night while he was peeing because he thought he had gotten back into his packed car.
They try to promote Smackdown’s Cena/Orlando Jordan match like it’s a big deal, but as good as Long as, he isn’t that good. Marc wonders what keeps Teddy going, and Teddy just knows that wrestling is his life and that’s all he wants to do. He’s determined to make it and he’s given up all his bad habits in order to do it. Marc also wants to know when he and Teddy are going shopping, so Teddy gives a quick fake answer before Marc drops him. Steve wonders when ‘Mania is (oh Christ) and asks the trivia questions: “Who did Christian beat in his first WWE match?” Well, in the WWE it would probably be Chris Jericho, but I’m pretty sure they mean his first WWF match. Marc and Steve needlessly talk for way too long about their favorite moments before Matt from Wisconsin calls in and answers: TAKA! I miss TAKA. Matt wins a Christian T-shirt, and they try to say something at the same time but it turns out like this:
Marc: “… Captain Charisma T-shirt.”
Steve:”… Cap (pause) Charisma (pause) shirt.”
They go to break and it’s clips of the Jericho/Christian ladder match from Unforgiven 2004. I always thought this feud was way better on the mic and rather sub par in the ring. Again, just my opinion.
Christian is on the phone and they joke about Christian doing a ladder match right after returning from a back injury. They ask him his thoughts about Hogan being inducted into the Hall of Fame, which only goes to prove how little they do with Christian’s character these days. Christian likes Hogan and thinks that he’s been lucky to wrestle him. He doesn’t have a favorite ‘Mania, but he lists a ton of favorite moments and comes off as a huge fan. Steve thinks that Christian always looks like he’s having fun, and Christian gives the same old speech about having the luckiest job in the world. See: every other Byte This I’ve recapped (except the Paul Heyman episode). Marc thinks that Christian steals the show in the Basic Instinct commercial. Steve notes that all his Hollywood producer friends tell him that they can’t believe how versatile the WWE superstars can be. Oh sure, Joel Silver is trying to call right now to tell him about how amazing these commercials are.
They bring up Tyson Tomko, and Christian struggles to say nice things about him and even makes a big deal about separating himself from Tomko (“We don’t tag up as much as you might think…”) Christian describes how amazing the feeling is when he gets to do a ‘Mania, and then Steve transitions into a story from the recent Are We There Yet book. Apparently Christian fell asleep on a Red Eye flight and they wrote “something” (i.e. a bad word) and drew a People’s Eyebrow on his face. An e-mailer writes in and asks if Christian’s gonna write a book for the WWE. He sounds very hesitant because he hasn’t accomplished everything he plans on doing with his life. They try to pimp an upcoming Heat match where he teams with Tomko, but no one’s heart is into it so they discuss Christian’s health (it’s good). They hint that Jericho’s suggestion about ‘Mania might involve Christian, but he has no idea so they drop him. Steve talks up Christian while Marc croaks his way through a few comments about the Fantasy Game. Steve brags up the current storylines and Marc tries to add some worthwhile comments about John Cena. Steve has to take over and talks about the Smackdown plotlines, mentioning that Mysterio has never had a bad match before. I recommend watching Rey Rey vs. Kevin Nash to anyone who has the same opinion. Anyway, the show grinds to a halt and we go out with footage of the last blood soaked minutes of Monday’s Raw.
Overall, that show was more boring than church. I don’t care that much anymore, but it’s a shame they let this show get so generic. In an effort to make a positive impact on people, may I recommend checking out the excellent Get in the Ring radio show at the Audio Wrestling website. They get great guests, ask all the right questions, and have more charisma and wrestling knowledge than 700 Marc Loyds and Caesar Romeros. And before anyone writes me with a smarky e-mail about that last comment, I know his name isn’t Caesar.