Two weeks ago, I mentioned that I missed Outback Jack. In the spirit of St. Patrick’s Day, I suppose I could mention missing an Irish themed wrestler. Then I considered the options and the most noteworthy of the bunch, Fit Finlay is still around.
Finlay and Hornswoggle are doing much better with the cloverleaf insignia than previous mainstay from the Federation years, Brian Costello. Not sure if anyone misses Brian, though he did do a bang up job of making opponents look unbeatable.
I could mention the Leprechaun from WCW, but I’m not even sure anyone remembers that character. In fact, I’m kinda surprised to remember, myself.
Otherwise I have to go back to around 1988 and Shannon O’Brien from the all-female POWW promotion. Much like Brian Costello, Shannon was pretty good at making her opponents look unbeatable. Come to think of it, I think David McLaine may have had a fetish for wholesome good girls getting the crap kicked out of them by their evil counterparts since that’s what usually happened (with a few exceptions here and there). It seemed like every week, Shannon would team up with some other ethnic based good girl, like Pocahauntas and both would wind up being beaten to a pulp by the likes of Genie Beret, Pali Alizar or Sasha the Russian (who also portrayed one of my favorites from those days, GLOW’s Dementia).
Until Finlay came along, the Irish cloverleaf type characters hadn’t fared too well, having to go back to the days of Irish Mickey Doyle in Detroit. He arrived in WCW initially as the Belfast Bruiser with a bone to pick with Steven (now William) Regal. They went on to have some of the more fun fights during WCW’s Pre-NWO Nitro Era. After that, he changed his name to Fit Finlay and modified his look with a shorter and bleached hairstyle. He was still tough as nails, however. He achieved some success and even had Chris Benoit and Booker T fighting each other in a series of matches just so one of them could challenge for Finaly’s WCW Television Championship. After getting out of the game and settling in as a backstage guy in WWE, he trained for a comeback and simply became known as Finlay. Again, he’s been able to achieve success, even though it hasn’t warranted much in the way of Championship gold. He did get a storyline midget son out of it, which I’m sure counts for something.
So here’s a hearty toast to our Irish friends on this St. Patrick’s Day. To Fit Finlay. To Hornswoggle. To Brian Costello. To Shannon O’Brien. To Irish Mickey Doyle. And yes, to the Leprechaun and to all others I somehow neglected to mention. Happy St. Patrick’s Day, everyone.