I’ve been gone for a few weeks now due to funerals (yeah, multiple) and toothache. I’ve tried to keep up with what’s been going on, but a lot of my fellow columnists seem to be writing horrible stuff like Stone Cold Steve Austin Should Wrestle CM Punk at WrestleMania.
Let me tell you why Punk and Austin should stay as far away from each other as humanly possible:
- Austin is old: He’s not like “mid-30’s, got a few years left in him” old, he’s 47. Why is this a problem? Cast your mind back to mid-’98 and think about how much WCW sucked because all of the big names were guys from decades gone-by. WWE may not have Hogan to fuck things up for everyone, but they have Hunter. They may not have Macho Man, Brutus, Virgil, Hacksaw or The Nasty Boys, but they do have Kane, Mark Henry, Chris Jericho, Rey Mysterio, The Big Show, Booker T (who still has the odd match), Albert/Bernard/Tensai, Lesnar and (at some point) The Rock.
- Repetition: Jericho is doing the whole temptation thing right now, do you really want to see the same shit twice? Think about Punk’s character. Think about Austin’s character. Do you really think these two would be angry at each other just because one of them drinks and the other doesn’t? Punk is more than just the straight-edge guy now, so would turning him back into a one note, militant straight-edge guy not be a waste of a few years?
- Injuries: Austin’s neck, blah, blah, blah. Fuck his neck, it’s his knees I’m worried about. Austin’s metal knee-brace was ripping people up as far back as 2002. Assuming he can still run at this point, it will injure someone again.
- Punk’s spot: Punk has been with WWE for six years right now. He’s held the WWE Title twice, his current run having started back in October of 2011. Does “the best in the world” honestly need the “rub” from an established name?
Honestly, this whole “let’s have today’s wrestlers take on those from when wrestling was good” mindset is kinda why WWE is so shite at the moment. Cena has had more title runs than Ric Flair, but he’s apparently worthless against a guy who left WWE back in the day over money disputes? Fuck that. Cena was depicted as Superman for about five years, beating almost everyone on the roster. Even if you don’t like the guy’s character, you must be able to see that having him lose to someone who hadn’t wrestled in ten years did nothing to show or improve the strength of the current roster.
What else did I miss out on?
Lumberjack matches have always hurt the roster, even (or especially) when the ring isn’t surrounded by humans. While the Cena and Brock, erm, stand-off thingy wasn’t a lumberjack match, the same rules apply. Remember when the NWO consisted of about 823 lower-card guys and they’d run in to protect Hogan all the time? It’s the same kind of thing there, nobody ever came out looking good. Why hurt the roster by having them all run down for Brock and Cena? C.R.E.A.M.
Lesnar was never a wrestling guy. He was never good at promos, he was never great in the ring and he was never, ever, interested in anything other than money. Lesnar has returned due to 5,000,000 of Vince’s crispest bank notes. If almost everyone on the roster is getting paid 1/20th of that, do you really think McMahon was going to say “Let’s approach this like we do with the rest of our guys”?
Ralph Hardin thinks religion should play a bigger part in wresting.
Ralph is wrong for a number of reasons. Here are the one’s I’d deem “fairly noteworthy”:
- A person (and therefore, a good character) has way more aspects to them than the fact that they praise a “higher power” (or several of them). As an Atheist, I really don’t want to watch a show where people are seen as good/evil based on religions views alone. If you look at the portrayal of homosexuals on television, their sexuality (or coming to terms with their sexuality) is always portrayed as a massive issue, as if all that character does from wake until sleep is worry about what other people think about where he puts his cock (or where she doesn’t let people put their cock). As Atheists are still seen as a minority, I’m sure their portrayal would be much the same.
- Any sort of religious favouritism in this day and age would be problematic. Having a Christian face beating wrestlers with other religious views would lead to all sorts of bad things that I’m sure Vince doesn’t want to get into (particularly if the face has blond hair and ends up beating several Jewish guys in the Elimination Chamber)
- Mythology is always more interesting than the people talking about it. The things a Priest/Minister/Vicar/Rabbi/etc. talks about are far more interesting than the Priest/Minister/Vicar/Rabbi/etc. alone.
- All the good “satanic” heels had some supernatural abilities & you can’t really do the same with preachers without accusations of blasphemy. TNA did a thing last year where The Pope would heal sick people. Needless to say, it died on its arse. While I (and I alone) think having a Rabbi raise a Golem in order to capture the title would be fucking amazing, nobody would buy it.
Mike Gojira took an in-depth look at John Cena’s progression since joining the company.
This one made me think about the history of wrestling as a whole.
We hear about Ric Flair’s numerous championship runs, but rarely about him being a heel/face at the time, nor the tactics he used to win/keep the belt. Flair’s sixty minute matches were remarkable back in the day, but they too have been neglected. Hulk Hogan is little more than a mass of revisionist history, but he still reminds people of why Hulk Hogan is Hulk Hogan. One of the many problems with The Rock’s return is that the ratio of “hey, he’s an actor” to “look how good he was in the ring” montages was ridiculous. I guess the DVD sets get into more of the legacy of the wrestlers, but the type of fans who buy them already know.
In ten years time, when a teenager is reading up on John Cena via wikipedia, he’s not going to think of him as a dick who outstayed his welcome.
Kyle Fitta played TRUE or FALSE with Joe Violet.
Not WWE related, but I’m going to talk about it anyway.
I usually prefer facts in my True or False questions, but it does kind of turn into Kyle trying to tell Joe that he’s wrong about everything. Assuming Kyle isn’t planning on turning it into a more general wrestling knowledge based thing that the commenters could take part in (and have the answers posted at the beginning of the next column)(in fact, don’t, I might use that idea at some point), he should maybe rename it to KYLE VS… and get into an actual debate. They could’ve spent way more time discussing the merits of Garrett Bischoff (or lack thereof). Either way, it’ll be interesting to see how the format grows (assuming the writer doesn’t get let-go).
Kyle also tried to open a column with a line like “pulse has rules, but fuck them”. I’m pretty sure the only rule we have is “tag your shit”. I got a “welcome pack” when I signed up and it mentioned something about adding a guy called Matt on Facebook, but I don’t think that was mandatory.
Joel Leonard covered how painful those three-hour RAW shows can be.
Do you remember when Monday Nitro made the jump from one hour to two? They were so happy about it. Tony or Bischoff would thank the fans for staying tuned, fireworks would go off at the hour mark and cheerleaders would do whatever it is they do.
Do you remember when Monday Nitro made the jump to three hours? It was absolutely fucking gash.
Vince remembers neither of these things, which is a shame.
Chris Sanders talked a little bit about Beth being hurt and Kharma’s return (whenever it may be).
AJ Lee should get the title in order to get back into mah boy D-Bry’s good books.
Kharma should take as much time as she needs to deal with what’s happened. I’m sure she’ll wreck the roster at some point, but it’s still early days.
If I’ve missed anyone’s column out, it’s because they covered Cena/Punk/Brock and I didn’t think repeating myself over and over would make for a good read.
Chikara and ROH did a thing this past weekend that one or two of you (literally) may have watched. Shane Douglas did another ECW Reunion show and all reports mention levels of awfulness the likes of which have never been seen (excluding the last time Shane ran one of these shows, or any time Shane has wrestled in the last 15 years). Other than that? I dunno, it has been quite hard to figure out things that legitimately happened during my absence. I think we need to start filtering out the kayfabe from the real news. Real news = things like Bagwell’s situation. Kayfabe, well, how about I take some news posts from last week and run them through the filter?
News: Beth is still under contract.
News: WWE shills for the internet
News: WWE still do charity work.
News: I guess maybe the “real news” is that Ryder’s show is made by WWE. I’m sure a lot of us knew this already, but you do see the odd comment/article about how Ryder got himself over because WWE wouldn’t and whatnot. I’m pretty sure the only “Superstar” related online thingy not ran or proofread by WWE is Goldust’s twitter account (@ and get blocked at your own risk).
Rarely do you see a site that just posts “Sid has broken his ankle”, “Arn retires due to neck injury” or “Goldberg is out because he cut his arm up on a car window”. Maybe that’s because this isn’t the 90’s, or maybe that’s why we have things like CB’s Slant below the news updates themselves. Still, a non-kayfabe version of the news might make for a good twitter or tumblr.
*I hate the terms “mark”, “smark” and whatnot. I think they exist just to diminish whatever levels of enjoyment we find in televised wrestling. Terms like that lead to people holding back their real opinion and just writing about whatever/whomever is popular at the moment. Fuck that. Say what needs to be said, but say it in a way that people can understand.
Swayze recently called James Alsop a “fucking idiot” over something related to pro-wrestling. That’s a good example of saying something the wrong way. While a lot of people might happen to agree with Swayze’s views on pro-wrestling (gotta take it easy here, Alsop is my editor)(hi, James!), the fact remains that pro-wrestling opinions are not a good measure of intelligence. Swayze could’ve just said “I disagree” and not came out looking like the bad guy in the eyes of James (and some others). On the other hand, (again) this is all pro-wrestling related, real bad guys are murderers, rapists and bankers (hi, Blair!).
“Hypocrite! You called out a bunch of Pulse writers during Flatlining “
This is true.
The concept of that round-table was to show that we’re not a bunch of unreliable cynics. For the sake of what little integrity I had at the time, I simply couldn’t refute the allegation that some of the writers were unreliable. Not without doing more “politicking” than Hulk Hogan. “Integrity” might be a stretch, but I actually mean everything I say in these columns (and, by extension, the comments).
This has run way too long for a footnote.