Show: Wrestling Epicenter featuring The Interactive Interview (Courtesy of “The Blaze” 1260 AM)
Guest(s): “The Immortal” Hulk Hogan & Lance Storm
Date: August 18, 2005
Your Hosts: Chuck D, James Walsh, & “The Queen of Extreme” Francine
The Interactive Interview has been around for nearly 3 years now. We’ve welcomed everybody to the show from “Nature Boy” Ric Flair to World Champion Batista to the man called Sting and beyond. While all those achievements were incredible for us, we feel we have surpassed that with this week’s show.
First, she’s our new partner in crime and she joined us for her weekly segment. The gorgeous woman steaming it up at www.MissyHyattandFrancineTV.com, Francine!
Second, he’s the best technical wrestler of his generation and has a brand new school you can check out at www.StormWrestling.com. On this show, we air part 1 of our 2 part Lance Storm interview! In this part, we cover ECW including the death of Chris Candido as well as his new school and his thoughts on the Hulk Hogan and Shawn Michaels feud.
And finally, we set the wrestling world on its ear. For over 20 minutes, we have a shoot style interview with without question wrestling’s biggest star ever and the man who made me love this business so much I’ve dedicated my life to it… I have no trouble admitting he always was and always will be my hero. The one, the only, “The Immortal” Hulk Hogan! And, as if Hogan the name isn’t big enough, it’s not the “Hangin’ and Bangin'” kayfabe Hulkster! It’s Hogan in a venting and shooting mood! It’s not often a man can say he got to talk to his hero for 20 minutes but I can and I cannot tell you how much it means to me. This one you CAN’T miss!
This one is jam packed. And, it’s all ready for your ears to listen to. All you have to do is go to www.WrestlingEpicenter.com and listen to it in glorious streaming media! It’s free for all and a whole lot of fun!
— During the show, a series of audio clips throughout Hulk Hogan’s career play hyping his appearance at the end of the show for the 20 minute interview. The clips include his title win over the Iron Sheik from 1984, the bodyslam heard around the world from Wrestlemania III, Winning the WWE title from Yokozuna and Vince McMahon thanking Hogan for Hulkamania, beating Ric Flair in his first WCW match to win the title, turning heel and joining the nWo, and clips from the Bash at the Beach 2000 incident including some of the remarks made by Russo towards Hogan which we’d discuss in the interview. This should set the tone for the interview!
— Real American by Rick Derringer plays loud and proud as Chuck welcomes Hulk Hogan to the program. Hulk chimes in saying hey to Chuck and James. James then tells Hogan that he’s the reason James even is in the media/wrestling business after 20 years of being a Hulkamaniac and is honored to speak with him.
— Hulk says he appreciates this show because it gives him the opportunity to come on the air and vent. James asks what is on Hogan’s mind and Hogan says, “My daughter’s getting old enough to date and I’m mad about it!”
— James then wishes Hulk a belated Happy Birthday. Hogan says, “Thanks, man. 52, whatcha gonna do?” James and Hogan joke saying they should make that a T shirt.
— Getting into the meat and potatoes of the interview, James mentions that a lot of the young guys in the business today are more high flying style of workers yet shows featuring those workers only get a thousand people in attendance if they’re lucky while Hogan and Andre, a very grounded style, got 93,000 in attendance. James asks what Hogan does differently that makes the crowd see him as special.
— “Well, you know. I listen with my heart. I listen with my ears. I really don’t need to sit in the back to talk to someone about what we’re going to do because there’s no way you can call it right from the back seat. You have to get out there and listen to the fans first and then react on that. So, it’s kind of a situation that it’s instinct. If I could drop kick… If I could jump off the top of a cage, splash someone from the top of the cage, believe me I’d pick the spot where it really meant something. It’s all about working hard and working smart. I’ve proved with a limited repertoire of moves and physicality, really, it draws millions and millions of dollars. Can you imagine if someone came along with some real athletic prowess out there and really could do the Rey Mysterio stuff and really think through it, it’d be crazy!”
— Chuck and James mention seeing Hogan do a few high risk moves in his matches in Japan. Hogan replies, “Yeah, brother. I’m just trying to be humble about this thing. I’m really just waiting for someone to get it. I’m waiting for someone to come along and say “Okay, this is what it’s all about and this is how it’s done.” Just don’t over think it, man. Just listen with your heart and your ears and it will all come to you.”
— Hogan goes on to say through the years, there have been many misconceptions about him when it comes to him not wanting to do a job. “Vern Gagne, for 3 years, told me not to go down to a knee. That put me into a spot where everybody wanted to say “Well, he doesn’t want to do a job. He can’t work. He can’t take bumps.” Promoters said “Man, if you go off your feet, we’re not going to make any money. You’re the Hulk!” You need to know the whole picture of this business.”
— Hogan says there’s a lot of things people don’t know when they say things like “Hulk’s back at 52” that they probably don’t understand and those things make him different from others. “The way I react, the way I move. There’s a reason for it. I don’t just do things, I plan things. It’s a different take on everything, man.”
— Chuck asks how Hogan takes his name being run through the mud by some people even citing an example being Randy “Macho Man” Savage’s “Be a Man” CD. Hogan says, “In generalities, thank God people are nipping at my heels, talking about me, and jealous. Sometimes people celebrate my failures. It’s just a different take on things. Sometimes people are good people and sometimes people are bad people. Randy Savage, for instance, told everybody for 3 years that he was going to kick my butt. I ran into him in Orlando, walked right up to him, offered to shake his hand – he wouldn’t shake my hand, didn’t want to go outside. He just sat in his chair and shook for 30 minutes scared to death. That has got to tell you something about his character. He can say whatever he wants. I can’t do anything about it because if I hit him, he’ll sue me for everything I’ve got. That’s his deal. That’s what makes him happy. He lives in misery.”
— “Like Meltzer. He’s the greatest judge of wrestling talent that’s never drawn a dime. “Okay! Let’s value his opinion!” Whatever! If I was going to listen to anybody, I’d listen to Hulk Hogan or Vince McMahon or somebody that knew the business a little bit.”
— Hogan says what is great about the business is that there are people who are interested in knowing about you.
— James asks Hogan if he has any nerves about stepping in there with Shawn Michaels at SummerSlam. “Yeah, it’s a gut check. You’re only as good as your last match so if I go out there and fall on my face with Shawn Michaels without ever getting to redeem myself, it’s a sad end to a 25 year career. With getting older, the knee replacement, the hip replacement, it really puts me in the check mate position to try to rationalize. “Okay, I’m here. It’s working. Do I need to this? Why am I doing it? Then you hear the fans and you want to do it. It’s a back and forth tug of war all the time.” Hogan adds, “It’s like Hawk used to say, What a Rush!”
— Chuck asks if Hogan feels the pain from the hip or knee replacement when he’s out there or if the heat of the moment gets him through. “Oh yeah! I feel everything, brother. It’s not like I’m swimming from the tsunami in the fight of my life. I’m not there with it. I’m so used to it, it’s almost like a chess game where everybody’s screaming at you, “make a choice, make a choice!” I really have to wait to make the right choice so it’s really a mind game out there.”
— “I pride myself on being a survivor out there. Guys that can’t work, guys that can work. Guys that can talk, can’t talk. Big guys, small guys… I’ve been able to adapt to them. If you think of all the people I’ve wrestled, I’ve probably drawn more money with more people than anybody else. I know Stone Cold and The Rock had a run and they’d wrestle The Undertaker or Triple H on a real consist ant basis but for a while there, I was wrestling different people every night and drawing money with them. So, I pride myself on the staying power.”
— James mentions something he did in WCW that defined his WCW run was forming the nWo and becoming “Hollywood.” Hogan says, “It was something that needed to be done. The whole business after my WWE departure, the red and yellow WCW run when the numbers leveled off, Eric Bischoff said, “Why don’t you turn heel.” I said, “It’d be heavy! There may not be any turning back from that.” So, I said, “The training, the prayers, the vitamins… I did it for the money!” That whole attitude, that whole anti-establishment thing jumped on board with the “Stone Cold” and took it to a whole other level with the nWo and it showed in the numbers. We stole most of the universe out there as far as the wrestling audience… It could’ve been a wild ride that was still going if people didn’t take their eye off the ball.”
— Hogan has no problem with Michaels calling himself “The Icon” these days despite Hogan originating it as part of the nWo being called, “The Biggest Icon in Wrestling.” Hogan says, “It’s a work. It’s a good way to characterize yourself but this thing, again, has taken on a life of its own. You know, they have writers here now that I’m starting to warm up to. They always have something to give you. Stephanie McMahon, even though I didn’t realize it, really has got her finger on the pulse here. She’s given me nothing but good material. I twist it around, add stuff, take stuff away but it always works. With that being said, Shawn Michaels, who found the lord and is at peace with himself, still has those demons still in him because the other night in the ring he took it upon himself to get real personal and I realized this is a little different from anything I’ve been in before because the guy that’s trying to burry me and put me out to pasture still has that demon inside of him. If I don’t put that beast to rest, I don’t think anybody will.”
— “Maybe it’s just with me but whatever it is, he’s crossed a line so this really is going to be a different kind of deal for me,” says Hogan about Michaels.
— Chuck mentions that they’ve been teasing the return of Bret “The Hitman” Hart quite hard of late and those words were taboo in the WWE as recently as a year ago as he feels he was “screwed” by the company. He mentions that Hogan himself had a like experience at Bash at the Beach 2000 in WCW. Chuck mentions that Vince Russo recently wrote a piece saying he mapped it all out and asks Hogan how true that is.
— “Well, I can’t really get into detail on that because I guess we’re going to court over it. But, certain things we had talked about but then Vince Russo took some liberties to totally change the whole battle plan. Otherwise, brother, I wouldn’t be going to court. Russo can spin it any way he wants. I’d have to be a really stupid individual to take someone to court over a work.”
— Will there be a season 2 of Hogan Knows Best? “We’re gearing up for round 2 as we speak! I’ve actually just got a couple weeks and then we’re back doing it again!”
— Hogan thinks Hogan Knows Best is so popular because it’s not like the over-the-top Osbournes with rehab and drugs and out of control kids or doing crazy things to win a contest. He thinks people like seeing a normal family on TV and seeing disjunctions that are normal like fighting with his wife or arguing with his kids.
— Hogan thanks his loyal fans for making Hogan Knows Best so successful and thinks showing the real side of the screaming Hulk Hogan that they are used to seems to have struck a nerve with people.
— Hogan thought Brooke’s music career was going well until about 10 minutes before we started the interview… That’s the thing about us at the Wrestling Epicenter! We’ve got PERFECT timing! She is yet to be signed with a record company.
— Hogan hopes Brooke doesn’t get involved in the wrestling business though he has discussed it with her. “The thing about my daughter getting beat up or hit in the head with a chair, I can’t comprehend that. Does not compute! But, in this world we live in, never say never. Not that that’s an invitation for her to get in the ring and climb around in her underwear but Jesus dude, I have no idea what lies ahead.”
— Hogan wants Brooke’s music to work for her because it is her first choice and, her father or not, he thinks she’s a good person and she deserves success.
— Chuck mentions a funny segment on Hogan Knows Best where Hogan got into it with a record label suit and joked that he brought everybody to the bank. Hogan laughs saying that is an “ego moment” and that he is trying to be humble but sometimes people don’t get it. He mentions that this guy wanted Brooke to cut her hair and dye it black and Hogan doesn’t want her to have to do that.
— Hogan says to get ready for Hogan Knows Best this Sunday night!
— You can catch Hulk Hogan in the main event at Summerslam on August 21 on pay-per-view as he goes one on one with “The Heartbreak Kid” Shawn Michaels in what is sure to be a match to remember!
— We round out the show with a song James promised to play if he ever interviewed Hulk Hogan on a review he did for www.SleazeRoxx.com titled “Hero” by Europe.
— Go to www.WrestlingEpicenter.com to listen to the full interview.
***** Wrestling Epicenter returns next Wednesday night at 11:30 p.m. EST as we welcome yet another superstar! Who will it be? You’ll just have to stay tuned to the Wrestling Epicenter at www.WrestlingEpicenter.com and listen live!
Credit: WrestlingEpicenter.com, James Walsh