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Showing posts from October, 2012

Book recommendation and free blog post for you

Scott:

I highly recommend to your blog readers that they grab a copy of "Marvel Comics: The Untold Story" by Sean Howe. http://www.amazon.com/Marvel-Comics-The-Untold-Story/dp/0061992100/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1351701610&sr=8-1&keywords=marvel+comics
The longer I read it, the more it sounded exactly like working for Marvel was like being on the WWE Creative Team: artists/writers at Marvel would lay out long storylines that got changed at the last second by the editor-in-chief or VP of Marketing or someone much higher up which created storyline snafus, continuity problems, etc.. In the Corporate Marvel Era, higher-ups lived by the monthly sales tallies, and then demanded that the writers do the same, initially successful things over and over again (like killing off characters for the "cheap pop" of the sales boost) to goose next months' sales/next quarter's balance sheet, and the writers complained that using the same gimmicks over and over turned …

Great American Bash 1997

Great American Bash 1997 Date: June 15, 1997 Location: The MARK of Quad Cities, Moline, Illinois Attendance: 9,613 Commentators: Bobby Heenan, Dusty Rhodes, Tony Schiavone
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
It HAS TO be better than Slamboree. I mean it has to be. The main event here is Savage vs. DDP in a falls count anywhere match. Also since last week's battle of the football players match went so well, we're repeating it here. Now one good thing about WCW at this point is that the matches got time, as in the shortest match on this show is nine and a half minutes long. On the other hand, the shortest match on this show is nine and a half minutes long. Let's get to it.

Monday Nitro - June 9, 1997

Monday Nitro #91 Date: June 9, 1997 Location: Fleet Center, Boston, Massachusetts Commentators: Tony Schiavone, Mike Tenay, Larry Zbyszko, Bobby Heenan
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
It's the go home show for Great American Bash and Savage vs. Page II, which is a match that I actually want to see given the build that we've got. The other main match on Sunday is Hall/Nash defending against Flair/Piper. The main event of tonight's show: Hall/Nash vs. Flair/Piper, although this one is non title. Other than that we've got Malenko defending the US Title against Jarrett and that's about it. Let's get to it.

October Countdown: WWE Hell In A Cell 2010

The SmarK DVD Rant for WWE Hell In A Cell 2010(Wrapping it up for another month with this one.  Any suggestions for November, given that I’ve already done the Survivor Series countdown?  WCW’s November shows and November 2 Remember I guess?  Anyway, this was only from last year, so I’ve got nothing to add to it.)Live from Dallas, TX Your hosts are Michael Cole, Matt Striker and Jerry Lawler

Simple Question

Hi Scott-
Where does the phrase "let's wait and see what happens / where it goes" come from?   I've seen it a lot lately.  Did I miss a quote from Vince or something?BrianNo, the quote from Vince was "We're telling stories."  The "let it play out and see where it goes" thing was kind of the overwhelming battle cry of the "anti-smarks" on my blog and others, in response to everyone complaining about how things didn't pay off the way they wanted.  Specifically, it was in reference to the CM Punk v. Kevin Nash feud going on after Summerslam 2011, which everyone assumed was headed towards an endgame that made sense.  And of course, it did not.  But people continually dismissing criticisms of the whole stupid thing with "Well, just let it play out and see where it goes before you make any judgments!" got to be kind of a meme.

Fwd: Insane Dec. taping schedule

---------- Forwarded message ----------Scott,Check out the WWE's crazy late December taping schedule:http://www.lordsofpain.net/news/wwe/Update_on_WWE_s_Complicated_TV_Schedule_for_Late_December_Around_the_Holidays.htmlI'm glad they aren't concerned about burning out both the talent and the audience who have to sit through all of this...

----------------------But they're telling stories!

October Countdown: WWE Bragging Rights 2009

Hey Scott, Big fan, yadda yadda, just wondering when you're gonna get off your fat fucking lazy ass and rant the PPV?Kind regards,Dan.Wouldn’t watching the PPV require me remaining on my fat fucking lazy ass?  There seems to be a gap in logic there.  In the mean time, you get this and like it. The SmarK Rant for WWE Bragging Rights 2009- Live from Pittsburgh, PA. - Your hosts are Michael & Jerry & Todd - So apparently the winner of the metaphorical bragging rights gets an actual trophy. Really? In 2009?  (And in 2010!  Thankfully they came to their senses and dropped it in 2011.) 

Russo???

hey scott, check this out: http://www.wwedvdnews.com/report-nwo-revolution-dvd-content-vince-russo/29171/
quote: Was very surprised they got Lex Luger and Vince Russo to provide comments. Looks like they were recent because no year was on the top right corner.
Russo??????? is he back!?!?!?!?
In many ways it's almost like he never left in the first place.
By the way, gotta love the strategy now of blatantly recycling the Back In Black / Monday Night Wars single disc DVDs into one MEGADOCUMENTARY about the nWo.

Darth Vader is going to Disney World!

http://mediadecoder.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/10/30/disney-buying-lucas-films-for-4-billion/

Four billion seems like the right price.

Thoughts? Is this a good thing or a bad thing? It appears like Disney has done well by the fans of Marvel (at least most of them). Does this move make you look forward to Episode 7 even more?

What the World Was Watching: Monday Night Raw - May 12, 1997

by Logan Scisco
-Vince McMahon recaps last night’s In Your House pay-per-view.
-Jim Ross and Jerry “the King” Lawler are in the booth and they are live from Newark, Delaware.
-The Hart Foundation arrives on the ramp and Bret hypes the qualities of each member.  Bret gives a great promo that blasts Austin for his behavior and “barnyard clichés.”  Bret says he has a surprise to announce, but he gets irritated by the crowd berating him and leaves before revealing it.
-Call 1-815-734-1161 to get your Austin 3:16 t-shirt for $20 (plus shipping & handling)!

Podcast Plug

Hey Scott...hope you are well. Looking for another plug for our
podcast. Thanks as always!

In this all new episode of the PTB Podcast, the great Kevin Kelly
joins Scott & Justin to talk about the year that was 1997 WWF. Kevin
doesn't hold back as they chat about Bret Hart, Shawn Michaels, Steve
Austin, Vince Russo, Undertaker, Brian & Melanie Pillman, Michael
Cole, Sunny, Vince McMahon and so much more.

They then wrap up with a discussion on Ring of Honor and the WWE
future of Jerry Lawler.

Kevin is open, honest and compelling as always, so fire up and enjoy
the newest episode of the PTB Podcast!

http://placetobe.podbean.com/

The SmarK RAW Rant–10.29.12

The SmarK RAW Rant – 10.29.12Man, hurricanes on the east coast, earthquakes on the west coast…makes me glad to be stuck in the most boring province in Canada where nothing ever happens.  Much like this show as of late. Live from Charlotte, North Carolina Your hosts are Michael Cole & Jim Ross

Monday Night Open Mic

Ahh another episode of RAW. I wonder how many consecutive shows this is now? I can't remember the final year they were pushed aside for the dog show. Had to have been during the first USA contract.

Much love to my people on the East Coast dealing with Hurricane Sandy. People here in Florida tend to mock those "overreacting" to this storm without thinking that most things here in Florida from houses to highrises are built to withstand moderate hurricane force winds. What really fucks things up is the flooding. Even the most minor of tropical systems can be a bitch if they move slow and dump a ton of rain in one place.

Family is good. Poor kid was struggling with the broken rib because it hurt to breathe but he couldn't move around to make it easier because of the body spasms. However, pain killers still work.

Hmmm what else. I've heard different things about Hell in the Cell? Seems like either it was better than expected or as bad as expected. Naturally it app…

October Countdown: WWE Cyber Sunday 2008

The SmarK Rant for WWE Cyber Sunday 2008(So I installed Windows 8 Pro on my new laptop because I got the $15 deal from Microsoft and I had been testing the Consumer Release version on my piece of crap Toshiba since June or so and really liked it.  However, with the pre-release version, it wiped out all my settings and was basically a fresh install, and I was a little apprehensive about installing over the shiny new version of Windows 7 that was on this laptop.  And as it turned out…it installed perfectly and everything is still there, 100% working fine.  WHAT THE FUCK MICROSOFT?  How am I supposed to rail against your crappy products if you make well-made operating systems that don’t give me anything to get angry about?  Even worse, they made a big deal about Office 2010 Starter Edition not being compatible before I installed, and I was getting ready to get all mad about it and even posted a diatribe on Facebook in advance, and then after I installed Win8…Office Starter still worked f…

Hell in a Cell 2012

Hell in a Cell 2012 Date: October 28, 2012 Location: Phillips Arena, Atlanta, Georgia Commentators: Michael Cole, Jim Ross, John Bradshaw Layfield
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
The main event here is Ryback vs. Punk and there's one thing I love about it: I have no idea who is going to win. They really could go either way and as a big supporter of Rybac, I'd love to see it. The main event is in need of a major change, so why not Ryback? The main issue for him though is that the fans are going to have the Goldberg chants going on high tonight. The Sheamus vs. Big Show match should be good too. Let's get to it.

Hell In A Cell Thread: Part One

First up, predictions for the show, and specifically the main event tonight.  There seems to be some buzz about it, although I don't think it'll affect the buyrate.  
My bold prediction:  I think they're in panic mode and that means WWE CHAMPION RYBACK.  
Bryan Alvarez had a really cool scenario if they want to screwjob the shit out of it:  Cena or someone else beats up Punk before the match even starts, and Ziggler cashes in on him and wins the WWE title.  Then Ryback can beat Ziggler in the Cell and supposedly walk out as champion.  Next night on RAW, the title gets taken away from Ziggler because his briefcase was only good for the Smackdown belt, so we end with Punk still champion, Ziggler still carrying the briefcase, and Ryback still undefeated.  If it was me I'd just beat Ryback by doing the Warrior-Rude finish and be done with it, but then I'm not exactly a Ryback booster.  
Apparently there's other matches tonight too.

How Long Aces & Eights Storyline Will Keep Going

Six months?  Oy vey...

http://m.wrestlezone.com/news/263171-how-long-aces-a-eights-storyline-will-keep-going

Look at how long they kept the Joey Ryan angle going and no one gave a shit about that one, either.  Nothing against Ryan, he's great in this role, but it wasn't a storyline that required FOUR MONTHS.  With Aces, we should have gotten the payoff at BFG, and all we got was the first real angle.  Maybe Brian Michael Bendis is doing wrestling writing now?

Sesame Street: Birdwalk Empire

Even though no 2 year old on earth would ever get the reference, this is unspeakably awesome. I just wish that Nucky Ducky was more Steve Buscemi-ish, but I was still howling with laughter when it came on Sesame Street this morning.

Ryback as a main eventer

I keep reading articles (like this one from Grantland http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/8549898/the-beginner-guide-ryback-wwe-superstar-headlining-hell-cell) about how the WWE has made a star in Ryback. Where is this coming from? Ratings haven't just fallen - they're down to pre-Monday Night Wars level. And this has all occured during Ryback's push. The guy gets some decent heat but the notion he is actually a main event draw is baffling to me. I mean, maybe the plan is for CM Punk to make him look like a billion dollars on Sunday but I am just not seeing it. Are you? I feel like the smarter wrestling fans are SO desperate for something new that they've sold themselves on Ryback. I don't even know if Ryback/Punk on Monday Night Raw for free would get me to tune in. At $50? Heck no.
Ryback isn't a draw and AJ is definitely not a draw and Team Hell No aren't draws either.  However, what WWE is doing is fairly ingenious, in that they're basically using The …

October Countdown: WWE No Mercy 2006

The SmarK Rant for WWE No Mercy 2006- One of the cool things about 24/7 is that they not only show stuff from the past, but from the present, like PPVs on a 4-month delay, for instance. Hey, better to pay nothing and wait a while than $40 and get screwed by a bad show. And I'm a month late in reviewing this, as the current offering is Survivor Series 2006, but that's the beauty of a DVD recorder. I LOVE technology.  (Thankfully I recorded a TON of stuff off 24/7 over the course of the few years that I had access to it, although cataloguing is not my strong suit so it’ll basically be a case of one day going to watch a random Boston Garden house show and having an episode of World Class stuck at the end as well.  I love surprises like that!  Also, for those of you super-obsessive ultra-nerds out there who keep track of this sort of thing, this was the first rant done where the formatting was 100% compliant with my current formatting, so I only had to cut-and-paste instead of the…

Smackdown - October 26, 2012

Smackdown Date: October 26, 2012 Location: Dunkin' Donuts Center, Providence, Rhode Island Commentators: Josh Matthews, John Bradshaw Layfield
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
It's the final show before the PPV and I think everything major is set. We finally know the tag title match so you can probably expect to see some more about that. After the disaster of a Raw this week, maybe Smackdown can redeem things a bit. If nothing else, Sheamus vs. Big Show is probably the best feud going in the WWE right now. Let that sink in for a minute. Let's get to it.

Fwd: Daniel Bryan vs Tyson Kidd Saturday Morning Slam

---------- Forwarded message ----------Hey Scott,Long time reader...keep up the fantastic work!Don't know if you saw this match yet or not, but it is a serious Match of the Year Candidate hidden on Saturday Morning Slam.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3keykHR6JWw&feature=relatedThanks Scott.---------------------Santino was pretty great on commentary too, acting as the questioning kid watching the show.  WWE is so insular now and it's refreshing to have a simple show with the goal of EXPLAINING this stuff to new viewers.

NWA-TNA Weekly PPV #15

October 9, 2002
Your announcers are Don West and Mike Tenay. However the graphics state that it is Don West and Ed Ferrara.
Tenay lets West tell us how Chris Rock will be here tonight as well as Hermie Sadler. AJ Styles vs. Jerry Lynn in a ladder match for the X-Division. Also, 6 man grudge match featuring Syxx Pac & BG James and a surprise partner vs. Ron Killings, Jeff Jarrett, and Brian Lawler.

October Countdown: WWE Taboo Tuesday 2005

The SmarK Rant for WWE Taboo Tuesday 2005(I don’t particularly remember if there was a Smackdown PPV for October 2005, because I was drifting away from fandom anyway by then.  I had finally given up on reviewing RAW after 5 straight years of it and Smackdown wasn’t even on the radar.  A quick check of Wikipedia shows that it was actually No Mercy again that year, with a main event of Undertaker v. Bob Orton & Randy Orton in a casket match, so I have DEFINITELY never reviewed that show because I know I’d remember a trainwreck like that.)  - It boggles my mind that they actually did this concept show two years in a row, with a third on the way.

Silver Lining?

Hey Scott,
For all the talk here about WWE's plummeting ratings and poor creative, there is one thing to note: pay-per-view numbers seem to be on a rise in 2012.
Now, let's say we throw away the big numbers for Wrestlemania 28, Extreme Rules, and Summerslam as those can all be attributed to returning past stars like Rock and Lesnar, rather than the current product. BUT what to make of the numbers for the "B" shows doing so (relatively) well?

- Over the Limit (headlined by Cena-Ace and Punk-Bryan) was up 27,000 from 2011.
- No Way out (Cena-Show and Punk-Bryan-Kane) was up 24,000 from 2011.
- MITB (Punk-Bryan with AJ as ref, plus the MITB matches) was down 5,000 buys from 2011. But one could say that MITB '11 was a bit of an aberration as it featured Punk-Cena in Chicago, which most would say was WWE's best built match in years.
- And then the news today at Night of Champions did pretty well at 189,000 buys, up 20,000 from 2011.

So is there anything t…

NXT - October 24, 2012

NXT Date: October 24, 2012 Location: Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida Commentators: Tony Luftman, William Regal
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
Back to NXT again and it's still the same feuds we've had for the last few weeks if not months. They need to add in some new ones soon because this is starting to wear a bit thin. The feuds aren't to the point yet where they're stale or anything, but they're inching towards that being the case. Hopefully things can be adjusted tonight. Let's get to it.

Gorilla! Heenan! Adonis confronts Piper! Slick! Orndorff! Funny Phone Tricks!

The fun stuff about Prime Time Wrestling without all the matches dragging in down.

Starrcade and WarGames question

Scott,
Two part question.  Vince used Wrestle mania as a tool for national expansion and to dominate the business.  But Crockett had a year and a half lead with Starrcade.  First, why didn't Starrcade become the juggernaut of growth that Wrestlemania did.  Second, if you could go back and change the main events and locations of all of the 1980's Starrcade's what would you do differently?Bonus question, what are your top 5 WarGames matches.  Thanks,Kyle 
1.  Because Crockett didn't roll the dice as big as Vince did.  He hedged his bets and did limited closed circuit locations, and then got destroyed by Survivor Series when he ventured onto PPV with it.  
2.  How about YOU tell ME what you would have done differently.  I'm fine with most of the main events, although the only major one I'd change would be Flair beating NWA World champion Lex Luger in 88 to regain the belt.  I'd probably also switch 87 to Flair defending against Jimmy Garvin because that wa…

Bruiser Brody......what if? - (and wrestler theme music)

1. As we all know, Bruiser Brody died in 1988 at age 42, but lets say for a moment that he had not - what do you think would have happened to his career? His demise coincided with the dying days of the territories, so would he have gone to WWF? Would he have went to Japan and maybe come back for a promotion like ECW? 

2. Give me a Top 5.......who - in your opinion - has the best musical entrance in Wrestling history? (This question was inspired by CM Punks music - at this point, I wish he would go back to the theme he used until last year)

1.  It would have been awkward as hell trying to pin him with that knife in his gut, I can tell you that.  Oh, wait, you meant something different.  I think he would have stayed in Japan and then retired fairly young.  Berzerker was WWF's attempt to recreate him, so obviously that wouldn't have worked, and I don't see a place for him in WCW.  Maybe a career revival in ECW, but how many bounced checks was he gonna take before he told Paul H…

Monday Nitro - June 2, 1997

Monday Nitro #90
Date: June 2, 1997
Location: Hara Arena, Dayton, Ohio
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Tony Schiavone, Larry Zbyszko, Bobby Heenan
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
It’s hard to believe we’re almost halfway through 1997. I’m digging this idea of doing four shows at once as you get through the storylines a lot faster which is good when the stories are really dull, as they have been lately. Sting and Hogan is clearly being set up as a huge match somewhere in the future, which is the start of probably the biggest angle in the history of the company. Hopefully we get more of that tonight. Let’s get to it.

Waiting for the Trade - Hawkeye

Waiting for the Trade
By Bill Miller
New Avengers: The Reunion by Jim McCann and David Lopez Collects New Avengers The Reunion# 1- 4 and Dark Reign: New Nation.
Why I Bought This – Considering this is the long awaited reunion of Hawkeye and Mockingbird (again my second favorite comic couple) the real question is why did I take so long to buy it? The answer to that is actually the New Avengers name, which is no doubt put here to help it sell but has the opposite effect of invoking bad connotations for me as I hate everything Bendis has done with Hawkeye (and most of the team) in that title. It wasn’t until I read the Hawkeye and Mockingbird trade that occurs after this and is also by McCann that I safely felt this dude gets these characters and decided I wanted to buy this one too. Having recently (re)read the first meeting of these two in the Avengers: Hawkeye trade following the movie this felt like a natural follow-up pick-up.
The Plot: Hawkeye’s wife Mockingbird needlessly died in the ea…

I Have Issues (12)

“Cry Vampire!” Action Comics Annual  #1 (1987) (W) John Byrne (A) Arthur Adams (I) Dick Giordano

Random Questions

Hi Scott,

I have a few questions for you, that I was hoping you might be able to shed some light on.

1) Following Wrestlemania X, Lex Luger wrestled Rick Martel on Raw, and during the commentary, Vince McMahon kept hyping what would happen when Lex Luger was able to get his hands on Mr. Perfect in a match. Were there plans for the two to wrestle, following the incident at Wrestlemania X? If so, how come if never happened?
2) Was it ever in the cards for Luger to win the WWF Championship? I know the opinion of the fans at the '94 Rumble during his and Bret's tie saw the crowd massively in favour for Bret, but I'm still surprised that Vince never gave Luger a chance with the belt. I mean, he SHOULD have been the type to be favoured by Vince McMahon, right?
3) Speaking of Bret, I assume his insurance company have been paying him, following his retirement in WCW and such. I don't know if he still gets insurance payments, but if he does, how was it he would have been able to ge…

October Countdown: WWE Taboo Tuesday 2004

The SmarK Rant for WWE Taboo Tuesday 2004(And now to the RAW half of October 2004’s PPV offerings, with one of the worst concepts for a PPV that they actually tried to follow through with for THREE YEARS.  At least with Fatal 4-Way they gave up after one.)  - I think that next to some of WCW's dumber offerings, that's one of the worst major PPV names I've ever heard. But that's just me. - Live from Milwaukee, WI. The arena looks horribly empty tonight, which can't be a good sign. - Your hosts are JR & King.

Over the "Moon" - "Are You Serious" - Episode 38

Bit of a sub-par episode this week, but that doesn't matter because PUPPET H IS BACK!  And at about 6:00 the guy behind the puppet cracks up out of character, so this episode is self-justifying.

October Countdown: WWE No Mercy 2004

The SmarK Rant for WWE No Mercy 2004(So now we’re into the era where WWE was doing everything in their power to make me stop watching, although the rise of Batista and Cena was enough to keep me interested for a while longer.  However, I stopped watching Smackdown entirely at this point, and RAW would soon follow when the show shifted from TSN, a basic cable channel, to the Score, a pay channel, here in Canada.)  - I got my hands on this one a while back, but really I just wasn't in the mood for more of World champion JBL until I had enough cold medication to deal with it properly. - Live from Jersey. - Your hosts are Cole & Tazz.

The Politics of the Main Event

Hey Scott, it's your You Don't Know Jack Overlord reaching out to you.

IN THIS CORNER... a charismatic speaker from Chicago with grassroots support; a man who burst onto the scene with his amazing oratory skills that rocked the foundation of what he does to the very core; a man who promised a new era and was sent straight into the highest position based upon his promises; a man who surrounds himself with others who preach his word and openly proclaims his status as a Cult of Personality; a man who, despite being in a position of respect, cannot get it; a man who has had to answer in the past for accusations leveled at him due to who his father is.

IN THIS CORNER... an industry lifer from Massachusetts who had to re-invent himself to get where he is; a man with success at what he does over the past 10 years; a man who wishes to obtain the position held by the Chicagoite; a man who is constantly challenging his Chicago opposition; a man whose moral code is an object of both ad…

Ratings thoughts

We know that WWE doesn't take TNA seriously as competition, but here's a question: at what point do the ratings become comparable enough that they have to? For example, as much as we joke about Aces and 0.8s, 0.8 looks a lot different next to a 2.5 than it does next to a 4.0. 

In a related question, how weak can the current RAW product get before Spike and Dixie roll the dice and make another run at a live show on Monday? Maybe they try a one-off special event on a Monday to see how they do, possibly to coincide with a European tour when RAW is taped anyway. Or do you think the beating they got last time precludes any future attempts?
I think Spike is totally happy with Impact anchoring Thursday for them and no longer has any designs on taking a run at WWE.  And the thing is, if the current RAW product gets much weaker (like sub 2.0 weaker) there's very real danger of USA not wanting to bother carrying them with those ratings.  At the very least, you'd see the show slash…

Comics - Where to begin?

Scott -

The flux of Marvel and DC movies has created interest in comics everywhere.  I've never read a comic in my life, but the movies have intrigued me enough to where I quickly rush home to Wikipedia to get more information on these characters/worlds/villians, trying to find easter eggs in the movies, etc.  As you would imagine, Wikipedia isn't always the most consistent source.
My question is...as a potential first timer reading comics...where in the world do I start?  With so many deaths and restarts happening all the time in every franchise, I would love an opinion from you and/or your bloggers on where someone with no real history with any characters (besides movies) can get an accurrate start.  Thanks.
Phew, that's a toughie.  Usually comics are something where you start reading as a kid and form your attachments based on those early memories of it.  The whole problem for newer readers to comics in general is that sequential art is not something that necessarily lends…

Sorry Guys

Apologies for missing the last couple of RAW open thread posts and thanks for those who have picked up the slack.

Last week was no excuse, it was a date night and I forgot. Last night, however, I was actually typing my note when I got a call saying Mr. Princess and the heir to the Throne were in a car accident. Car was totaled but luckily Mr. Princess only had a broken arm and a couple of shards of glass lodged into his leg. The heir has some pretty nasty neck and back spasms and a broken rib.

Luckily they will be fine. Unfortunately the young couple that hit them aren't doing as well. Neither were wearing their seat beats and both suffered some head trauma. I think the guy is still in ICU and the girl might have gotten moved out this morning but they were both in bad shape. So whenever you drive, please buckle up, it's annoying I know, but it only takes a second and just think about the people that love you.

October Countdown: WWE No Mercy 2003

The SmarK Rant for WWE No Mercy 2003- Geez, you’re a FEW days late with a rant…  (Joke there being that this wasn’t posted until a few months into 2004, as I was visiting family and didn’t have the motivation to do the rant until I was able to track down the DVD months later.)  - Live from Baltimore, MD. - Your hosts are Cole & Tazz.

Wrasslin question

Hey Scott. I was wondering if you knew how far in advanced the WWF feuds were booked in the early 90's? Did they plan out the WrestleMania main events months in advance or did they just kind of wing it? Also, how come Roddy Piper and Rick Rude never had their big match that was being built up well into WrestleMania VI? Instead they stuck Rude with Snuka and Piper and Bad News. Thanks and keep up the great work! It must be horrendous to have to sit through 3 hours of RAW every Monday. Which do you think was worse...3 hour RAW's or when Nitro went 3 hours for a little while?

In the early 90s?  They planned the feuds and Wrestlemania main events in particular WAY in advance.  Like usually a year, or sometimes more.  The whole "make it up as we go along" thing didn't start until the Monday Night Wars era, in particular with the rise of Russo.  They knew Slaughter was getting the World title as soon as he came in, for instance, and of course the Luger push was planned …

Raw tonight

With the debate happening tonight, what are the chances Vince stages some event to mock the participants?   Something along the lines of the Trump/Rosie travesty from a few years ago?

3-to-1?
2-to-1?

There's pretty much no way Vince can help himself, is there?


Well we already had their incredibly witty take on the debates with Big Show v. Sheamus a couple of weeks ago, plus they wouldn't want to do anything the least bit politically controversial this close to Linda's election, so I'd say there won't be anything.  Going against the debate, plus the 7th game of the NLCS, plus a football game, I sure wouldn't want to be the guys reporting the ratings to Vince tomorrow, though.  

Titles and Steiners

Dear Scott,
  Longtime reader of your reviews and rants. I just have two(2) quick questions:

  1. With Vince putting so much of the product on TV now and him squeezing every penny he can out of merchandising, how come he never created a TV title. I would think you could get more mileage out a TV champion on television than say the US title (especially when u already have the Intercontinental title). Always wondered why he never did that.

They have WAY too many titles already.  A TV title is just another name for another secondary belt that no one gives a crap about, to be honest.  Plus once Jim Duggan pulled it out of the trash to become champion, the concept was gonna be dead for a LONG time.  Frankly I'm shocked he resurrected the US title concept instead of reusing something of his own creation like the European or North American titles.  
   2. I was watching an old Impact episode and Scott Steiner was on. As I was explaining to my wife the complete change in character and skills…

Bam Bam

Is there a reason Bam Bam never got some sort of generic six-month feud with Hogan (or Savage, or later on Bret or Nash) during his initial run? A big intimidating heel, athletic, always seemed to have pretty good heat, etc. Certainly Vince has made more with less. What gives!!

Thanks, and love the blog!
Bigelow coming in as a babyface in 87 was always kind of puzzling to me, because really why would you need a #3 babyface behind Hogan and Savage anyway?  Hogan headlines one run of shows, Savage headlines the other, boom, no one else needed.  A role as the #1 heel doing a run with either one would have made way more sense and made either guy way more money.  Unless it was something like Vince knowing that Hogan was taking time off in 88 and looking for a replacement besides Savage.  Kind of a moot point because they had their falling out early in 88 anyway and Bigelow jumped to the NWA.  
As for the second WWF run, I think it was really just a case of Bigelow's star fading quickly an…

CM Savage

Hey Scott, 

Love your work, yadda yadda.  I was just thinking that since WWE is going all out with Punk as the new top heel, why not borrow an angle that's passes the Seven Year Rule three times over?  Punk is a huge Randy Savage fan, and with him using the elbow in tribute, why not have him crush some babyfaces throat and you can do the whole WM 3 build-up.  There could be loads of dramatic irony in it too, before the throat crushing, have the face cut promos about Punk betraying everything he talked about in the initial Pipe Bomb promo and then Punk can literally silence his opposition.  Completing Punk's full metamorphosis from rebel underdog face to dominant tyrant heel.  A reverse hero's journey if you will.
I've been saying forever that someone should have done the throat-crushing storyline with the Rock, since that's what his whole gig is based on.  And having Punk take away his voice, leading up to Rock finally cutting a promo on Punk after he wins the title …

Superman For All Seasons

I just finished re-reading this the other day, and as a big dc-head, I wanted to ask you about it.  Have you read it?  In my opinion, its a tremendous read and hits the superman character pitch-perfect.  Even though he was born on another planet and has amazing powers, he was raised as an all-american farmboy with humble beginnings.  Its maybe a million times more interesting a character than whatever weirdo loner that Morrison has turned him into.  People love post crisis superman up until Death of Superman.  I just don't understand why DC would allow Morrison to totally regress their second biggest character.  Anyway, I digress.  Have you read Superman For All Seasons and what did you think?

Yes, although All-Star Superman is still by far one of the greatest interpretations of the character ever, I'd say.  And that's Morrison at his best, doing it as a love letter to the Silver Age in 12 issues.  Although really the current run on Action Comics is pretty awesome; it's…

Eaton/Havoc 91

I have a feeling I've asked about this before - and forgive me if I have - but your Halloween Havoc 91 rant reminded me about this.

What was up with the Bobby Eaton heel turn in '91? They had just turned him face a few months prior with the York Foundation angle, gave him the TV title for a bit before he lost it to Austin, and then out of the blue, he's introduced as a member of the Dangerous Alliance alongside both Austin and Arn Anderson (whom he beat for the title in the first place). Any insight into this?
In a related question: during the Eaton face turn, I remember a TV match that started out as an Eaton vs. Buddy Landell singles match and switched into an Eaton/Zenk vs. Landell/Taylor tag match halfway through. Anyone else remember that or know where to find it? It's the first time I remember seeing a singles match changed to a tag match partway through.
I definitely remember the tag match for some strange reason, possibly because 1991 was the first time we were ab…

October Countdown: WWF No Mercy 2001

The SmarK Rant for WWF No Mercy 2001(But first a word from the movies:  ARGOFUCKYOURSELF.  If that movie doesn’t win Best Picture…well it wouldn’t actually surprise me.  But it would be a damn shame, because any movie where I know exactly how it ends but still has me in a state of heart failure leading up to the ending deserves all the awards that can be thrown at it.  I bow to the greatness of Ben Affleck’s directing.)  - This was pretty much a one-match show going in for me, so anything on top of that is gravy. - Live from St. Louis, MO - Your hosts are JR & Paul E.

Random Thought

Traditionally in wrestling, a referee stopping the match due to excessive bleeding doesn't change the title.  So that would be a terrific way for a babyface to beat the hell out of a heel without having to lose and still keeping the title on the heel.  I have no idea what this random thought could apply to, however.

Bane bischoff

Hey there.i don't know why this randomly popped into my head weeks after the fact, but yeah. There was that episode of impact where hogan and sting get kidnapped and taken to a&8s tree fort or whatever, they're sitting there talking to voice modulated leader dude in person, shouldn't his voice have come through clear as day? That mask isn't big enough to have any sort of reamplification device in it. Is leader dude a robot? And yeah, dude was also babbling 3 ft away from joseph parks for a few weeks....

There is so much wrong with that angle.  Yeah, that's one of the most ridiculously egregious examples.  I'm getting annoyed that apparently we're only ever gonna get one unmasking a MONTH at this rate, maybe less.  Devon's not the leader, and because it's TNA there's another three levels of leadership that have yet to be revealed.  It reminds me of the last couple of seasons of True Blood, where every time you THINK we've progressed as far…

Muraco

Scott:
Just a quick thought/question…there always seems to be no shortage of opinions on who was/is the most underrated wrestler…was wondering your view of the work of "Magnificent" Don Muraco in the WWF circa 179 to about 1984…I think his work, during this period, is vastly underrated…he was basically the #1 heel in the promotion until he was overtaken by Piper…his mic work – for the times – was top notch and he seemed to always draw serious heat…just curious as to your opinion?   
Great heat, great promo, lazy as FUCK in the ring for most of the time I've seen him in that period.  I mean, he did what he needed to do, but really the famous squash match where he's eating a sandwich while beating on a guy says it all in a nutshell about his work ethic.

Greatest Push Enhancement of a Wrestler

Hey Scott,

I was looking at a WWE.com article discussing guys that weren't supposed to make it and they featured Mikey Whipwreck (he made it?) and their justification was, at one time, he beat Steve Austin. That took me back and it got me thinking to when I saw that match on DVD and how I thought to myself, "Wow, how far did Austin go in one year?"
This got me thinking, one of the necessary evils of wrestling is that you have guys who might start out on the job squad and, later in their career, are fighting main eventers. Daniel Bryan is a clear example of this where he started out jobing to everyone on NXT (back when they were being sold as green-as-grass rookies) and now beats Kane. HBK used to have trouble with Virgil (and would job constantly as a Rocker) and, later on, could polish off, well, everyone. In 1995, HHH used to get annihilated by the Undertaker (It was basically a joke to see the two of them in the ring), and in his last match, he all but beat him. This al…

Smackdown - October 19, 2012

Smackdown Date: October 19, 2012 Location: FedEx Forum, Memphis, Tennessee Commentators: Josh Matthews, John Bradshaw Layfield
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
Back to the blue show after things have taken a fresh turn on Raw. We're closing in on the Cell where apparently Show vs. Sheamus isn't in the Cell, likely leaving them open for a rematch next month. I'm enjoying this story way better than I likely should but having a clash of two titans like this is always fun. Hopefully things pick up a bit on here. Let's get to it.

Mike Graham dead?

Nothing on the Observer site yet, but I've gotten a couple of e-mails about Mike Graham dying today.  If so, I feel kind of bad about all the shit he's gotten in recent years from, well, everyone. Sounds like his life was going very badly and it might have been a suicide.  RIP.

Sesame Street puppets as WWE Superstars

A heated BoD discussion as to whether Elmo is more like John Cena or The Rock got me to wondering if all of the major Sesame Street puppets have a WWE counterpart.  So far I got:

Elmo: John Cena or The Rock (good points made for both) Big Bird: Hulk Hogan Oscar: Stone Cold Cookie Monster: Ryback Grover: Jeff Hardy Tully: Matt Hardy Kermit: uh...drawing a big ol' blank here
Can you help a bored brother out?
I'm assuming by "Tully" you mean Telly Monster, and I can't agree with Matt Hardy.  Telly's a neurotic spazoid constantly seeking validation, probably closer to CM Punk or even Paul Heyman.  Cookie Monster as Ryback is perfect.  Grover would be closer to Santino for me, the guy who thinks of himself as a cool customer but who is really a big nerd.  Kermit's the neutral beloved straight man, which is obviously Jim Ross or Jerry Lawler.  
And you missed the most obvious gag of all:  The Count as a referee!

Dan Selby: Impact Wrestling review

TNA Impact Wrestling Review

So here's the fallout from what was a good pay-per-view, I felt. Great wrestling, but too many title changes 'just because it's our big show'. I kinda get it, but some felt for the sake of it. Anyways, I've been ill as hell this week and i'm now armed with a keyboard and hot chocolate. It can only be time for TNA Impact…
Each match/segment will be scored with a positive (+), a negative (-), or a neutral (N). These will then be calculated to give a fair overall rating for the show.

Compost-Fueled Cars: Wouldn't That Be Great? - Onion Talks - Ep. 1

About time the Onion took those pretentious TED Talks down a notch or two.  "Step one:  Come up with the idea for compost-fueled cars...WE'VE ALREADY DONE STEP ONE!"

Fwd: Remembering Alien

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Thomas Phillips (FTM)" Hi Scott,This is non-wrestling related, but if you think it's suitable for sharing I'd appreciated it being posted on the blog.Cheers,
TomHave you ever seen Ridley Scott's ALIEN? If so, then we are interested in hearing from you! A team of researchers from universities in the UK are asking people to go to www.remembering-alien.org to share their recollections of a fantastic piece of film history. Young or old, whether you liked or hated it, we want your help in seeing how people have responded to the film over the years. We look forward to hearing from you!

Shoots and Street Fights

If you can link this to your readers I'd be very appreciative.

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1374417-pro-wrestling-shoots-and-street-fights-randy-savage-pistol-whips-bill-dundee

Thanks!

Ha, the Randy Savage pistol-whipping story, awesome.  Sure, in the real world he'd be classified as a sociopath, I'm sure, but somehow his craziness and drug-addled rages just made him all the more charming within wrestling's confines.

NXT - October 17, 2012

NXT Date: October 17, 2012
Location: Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida Commentators: Byron Saxton, William Regal
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
Things have kind of reset after last week and now we need a new challenger for Rollins and the NXT Title. Other than that we had Punk here last week who really didn't do all that much. The good thing about last week's episode was that the show stood alone but it had some great stuff on it. Hopefully that keeps up tonight. Let's get to it.

Blog Draws!

Scott, 2012 Scott sez/Benoit/Montreal Screwjob are your only draws on this board.RYback isn't a draw and Cena Heel turn is showing diminishing returns every time out.You might have something with Jesse Baker, but you won't push him. Clearly you have something with Hollywood Fuj, who turned heel but nobody wants to vote down Fuj.Does this sound familiar?
I think Hollywood Fuj is overrated and needs to learn how to work Main Event Thread style.  And clearly Invasion Fantasy Booking is also a big draw, along with Brock Lesnar and Daniel Bryan questions.  I don't even WANT to push Cena Heel Turn but clearly no one else is ready yet.  Plus I've got some great topics in developmental right now, who could really be good hands if they found their voice and maybe dropped 15 pounds and dyed their hair.  I've heard nothing but good things about Indy Geeks Who Might Be Signed Next, as well as Potential Leaders of Aces & Eights.  Plus I think 2013 Scott Sez is almost ready t…