Pulse Wrestling Answers #013



This week I have man-flu. It’s like regular flu only it becomes much more profound when there is a woman around kind enough to cook for, fuss over, and generally benefit the man involved. ”Marge, the boy’s wasting valuable time! Come change the channel and pat my head!” Once again, Homer Simpson speaks the truth.

So, basically, don’t expect me to make a great deal of sense. There may even be some belligerence involved, but most 78% of it will be for a good cause.

Meantime, send in more questions to get more answers.

Meanertime, read on:

Firstly, Nigel Chaos has a bit about last week.

“Hey. “Superstar” Billy Graham took his name to honour the first Billy Graham after seeing him preach.”

Indeed he did. It also allowed him to be booked as the brother of other notable wrestling Grahams, such as Eddie Graham, Luke Graham and Jerry Graham. Also, the ‘Superstar’ tag was a straight lift from the song “Jesus Christ Superstar”. Billy Graham was also the name of a comic book artist who worked on a lot of Marvel titles in the ‘70s, most notably LUKE CAGE: HERO FOR HIRE and BLACK PANTHER. I’m not yelling, that’s just how a good comics nerd is supposed to type the names of comic book titles. Famous Bill Grahams include Bill Graham, a prominent Canadian politician in Canada, and Bill Graham, a Holocaust survivor who went on to promote rock shows, including the American leg of Live Aid. Famous William Grahams include William Graham, the Chief Whip of the Welsh Assembly.

But Superstar’s real name is Eldridge Coleman, so forget all that.


Geoff Evans knows that the truth… is out there:

“Thanks for the info about Shotgun Saturday Night. I believe I’d like to see HHH getting tombstoned on an escalator.

Anyway, another question. I was just reading some Wikipedia articles, and in the process of correcting some horrendous spelling errors in Brian Adams’ entry, I came across this tidbit which was added in a prior revision of the article:

“n February 2007, Adams revealed he has HIV stemming from a homosexual romance he had when he was 19 years old. He did not reveal it to anyone during his tenure in the WWE and WCW due to fear he would lose his job because of the threat of spreading the disease during blade jobs in matches.”

ZOMG! I realize that this is probably bullshit, but please debunk it for me, Mr. Wrestling Man. Thank you.”

It doesn’t seem to be on the Wikipedia entry now, I’ve never heard anything about it before, and there doesn’t seem to be anymore about it online, so consider it officially debunked. Besides, WCW used to conduct annual tests for HIV, hepatitis and other conditions transmittable via blood on its workers, so if it was true then it’s highly unlikely Adams could have kept it a secret. There was also a line on his Wikipedia page about how he used to be involved with the kooky Icelandic singer/actress/kook Bjork but that seems to have been removed too.

The lesson is that Wikipedia is great but people are not.


striker64 returns with a couple:

“Thanks for your response in your last column sir. Keep up the good work. And now, another question:

Has there ever been any known instance during a Royal Rumble where two – or more – guys have been doing the fake elimination spot, and someone actually slipped and fell over the top by mistake?

I’m reading old WWF reviews and I thought of another one. At the 1992 Royal Rumble, the Mountie was the IC Champ. It was explained that he defeated a sick and injured Bret Hart. Was Bret really sick and injured and had to take time off, or was it just a way for cheap heat on the Mountie? And what was the original IC match scheduled for the RR? “

I don’t think anybody has ever accidentally eliminated themselves during the fake elimination spot but there have been a couple of prominent f*ck-ups in recent times. In 2000, The Rock didn’t quite manage to keep his feet off of the floor as he eliminated The Big Show. Since the cameras had caught this they incorporated it into the build for Show challenging Rock for the #1 contender spot at No Way Out. More noticeably, Batista was meant to eliminate John Cena outright at the end of the 2005 event but his momentum carried him over the top rope too and both guys were eliminated at the same time. This led to Vince McMahon making an impromptu appearance and restarting the match to get a clear winner. Of course, that was when Vince tore both his quads and sat on his arse in the ring like the roid-goon he is. Of all the people to inadvertently cause muscles to slide off bones, it would have to be Batista, sure enough.

Bret Hart wasn’t ill or injured when he lost the IC belt to The Mountie but his contract was expiring and the WWF was having difficulty in agreeing terms to a new one. To protect their title belt from turning up on WCW television they had him lose it as soon as possible, which is rather ironic considering what happened between Bret and the WWF five years later. He lost the belt on a house show, so hardly any of the audience saw him getting beaten, and concocted the flu story to further protect him, so I guess they were rather confident about settling the new contract. I think that the hang-up over the contract had something to do with intellectual property rights, and that the original match for the Rumble that year was just a straightforward Bret/Mountie bout. It actually worked out for the best, since Piper got his only major singles title win in the company and we got a classic Bret/Piper match at WrestleMania VIII.


James Kirwan takes a trip to a torrid place on memory lane:

”Having recently watched Survivor Series 2001 I have come to realise how
dreadful the whole alliance angle was. If Vince really wanted to make this
angle work he would of surely bought out the contracts of major WCW players
such as Sting, Hogan, Nash and so on, rather then making a second rate “team
alliance” which was mainly made up of members of the current WWF roster.
Surely in the short term it would of represented a financial loss but in the
long run it would give the company a much stronger roster and increased by
rates and merchandise sales. What are your thoughts on this? And who would
you have in your “team alliance”. Also if Triple H hadn’t been injured at
the time do you think that he would of stayed loyal to Vince or joined
forces with the alliance?”

The important point there is the caveat about Vince ‘wanting’ to make the angle work. It’s well-known that he can’t stand the thought that other people might have done something better than him, particularly in wrestling, which has become ingrained in the political fibre of the entire company now. That’s why we have things like ECW Tuesday Night Heat. If he was to splash out on getting all of WCW’s big names and really get behind WCW as a brand in its own right it would have required a complete and uncharacteristic change of attitude. Considering the lack of interest in WCW from TV networks, the abysmal reaction towards that WCW segment of Raw, the available funds being tied up in the XFL, the poor drawing performances and lacklustre work of WCW’s main eventers in recent times, the confidence that those people had nowhere else to go once their contractual obligations had been fulfilled anyway and the perpetual feeling that Vince Knows Best, there was never any danger of such a thing coming to pass. They could certainly have booked the storyline a lot better but, considering the logistics of the time, it’s hard to see how it could ever have been anything more than the unspoken imitation of the WCW/nWo feud that it turned out to be.

Also, it’s hard to see how the ‘major WCW players’ could have given the WWF a stronger roster or made a significant difference in sales. Hogan certainly went on to make the company money, especially in 2002 and 2005, but had he been brought in at the time of the Invasion then, as seen at WrestleMania XVIII, the WWF fans would not have treated him as a heel, which would have forced him away from the Alliance side, which would have further buried WCW. Nash would have turned up, delivered an amusing quip, played with his hair and then taken nine months off after injuring himself whilst brushing his teeth. Sting would not have signed with the company anyway on vague reasons of morality. Goldberg could have worked out well for them had they established him as the leader of the WCW side, kept Austin on the WWF’s side, and had the patience and capability to slow-build to an epic bout between them… but the WWF would still have won and they would still be left with the tricky question of what to do with Goldberg once he has been beaten and the money match has gone. In any event, as was seen in 2003, his drawing power had greatly diminished, in large part due to the promotion’s booking of him, and his personality clashed too often with too many of the wrong people for him to stick around at his inflated sense of self-worth. And, really, who else was there? Jarrett? Blackballed and never a draw. Hart? Blackballed himself and couldn’t wrestle. Savage? Blackballed and crazy. Hall? Last call. David Arquette? Quite. They got Booker T and DDP and that was about that. The only other option was Ric Flair but the involvement of one old man, no matter how popular an old man he may have been, would not have been enough to alter things.

In the end, no matter who was in the Alliance, the entire Invasion angle stood no chance of living up to the expectations of the fans.

As for Triple H, it seems logical that he would have stayed on the WWF side in order to fight Austin at SummerSlam. Knowing the state of affairs at the time, however, he may well have turned heel and back half a dozen times within the space of two weeks. Who knows?


The hopefully-named Phil McCrack writes:

”I notice that the WWE Title these days looks shit. Do you think they will
ever de-gay it and make it pretty again, like it was when it was the late
80s/early 90s eagle effort?”

It certainly does look like an accurate representation of pap. I guess that if somebody wants to be an entertainment champion then spinning is pivotal. All we and those who share our good taste can do is hope that, eventually, a better heel than Edge will get the belt and replace it with something more suitable. Reverting to the classic eagle style would be a step too far for them but they may well eventually favour the Undisputed Title style that was brought in for Lesnar. After all, it was on the cover of the History of the WWE Championship DVD…


Roger, possibly an American Dad fan, ponders the WWE Hall of Fame:

”If you had to choose 8 inductions into the hall of fame this year, including
1 celebrity, 1 tag team, 1 manager, 1 announcer/commentator/backstage chump
and 4 singles wrestlers, who would you choose? I’d choose Randy Savage as
“top draft”, Mr. Perfect, The Midnight Express, Jim Cornette, Gerald Brisco,
Cindi Lauper, Hillbilly Jim and Rick Martel.”

Ooh, fun. Lessee…

Celebrity – Mr T. If they were vaguely serious about making the ‘celebrity wing’ a regular occurrence and not just a means of satisfying their peculiar fascination with Pete Rose then both T and Lauper should be considered certain to get in. Both were hugely helpful in getting the WWF into the fabric of pop culture in the ‘80s. I’d go with T because, well, I ain’t no sucka. Plus we could get a hilarious induction speech by Piper, which would double as a cheery middle finger flapping in the flabby face of Hogan.

Tag Team – Considering the only tag teams to have gotten in so far are the Valiant Brothers and the Blackjacks, they certainly have plenty of options available. There’s no better or likelier place to start than with the Midnight Express or the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express, and it’s certainly hard to pick between them, so either one will do. Better yet, just cheat and put them both in together. Better yet, go with the Midnights and have Bob Holly and Bart Gunn do the induction.

Manager – Practically all the obvious candidates have already gone in, so let’s go with Miss Elizabeth. An induction speech by Savage would be the greatest guilty-viewing pleasure since that Michael Jackson interview with Martin Bashir, and if he’s not available then getting Luger to do it instead could be even juicier.

Announcer – Oh, f*ck knows. Maria.

Wrestlers – Curt Hennig, yes. Randy Savage might not get inducted until he has shuffled loose the mortal coil and is thus finally at a safe distance from Vince, but since this is up to me he can go in. The same goes for WOYAH. And I would force Ric Flair to accept the three-quarters kayfabe honour so that he might, might finally take the f*cking hint and retire.

By the way, it is amazing that people in the wrestling industry are so profoundly odd that their silly little political games have infected something that ought to have been as straightforward as merely honouring the best of the best for their contributions to the business. I mean, the only Dudley that will ever be in it was Vince’s limo driver. What’s that all about?


And there’s time for a couple of sentences from Norbert Scuzzbucket III:

”I used to read you and Ross back in the TSSP days, I’d just like to say f*ck
Paul Day. Thank you.”

Thank you!

The Shooting Star Press was an e-mail newsletter Mr Williams and I ran in 2001-2 in the wake of our split from Wrestling-Online. Then came 411 Wrestling, then came this place. There are 63 glorious back issues available here for those in need of further outstanding reading material. We had a lot more energy back then… Anyway, Paul Day was our resident moron, who continually plagued our inboxes with nonsense and refused to take the hint. Imagine the literary equivalent of a Khali match. A Khali Iron Man Match. A Khali Iron Man Ladder Match. That somehow involves Judy Bagwell. Naked. On a trampoline. On laxatives. In your bedroom. The horror, the flashbacks…


That’ll be all for now, then. Next week requires additional questions and less mucus in/leaving my head.

Until then, since I am ever such a nice fellow, you may go and read things like Big Andy Mac and his reports on the ROH Fifth Year Festival, Aaron and his take on Homicide/Morishima, Botter and his comeback column, and Ditch with all the latest on the Japanese scene. And by the time this gets posted they should also have posted shitloads of news bits and backstage scuttlebutt from yours truly, via Meltzer.