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Quantity and quality

Hi Scott,

Forgive the topic name but had to put something there?!

I got thinking after reading your reply to someone about them watching Raw, Smackdown, Main Event AND NXT...

My wrestling viewing/fandom has been reduced from the above to simply reading Raw results, cherry picking anything that might be worth watching (hint: not much) and watching NXT & Lucha Underground. 

I also catch a couple of British wrestling shows a month (I'm a UK resident)... it amazes me how some people have the time to watch WWE, TNA, ROH as well as their local shows?! Jeez!

What does your wrestling viewing consist of these days? Anything you really enjoy or dislike?


​Well, I have RAW cut down to watching the "Top 10 RAW Moments" highlight package on YouTube, and I occasionally still watch NXT but don't feel the need to rant about it at this point. Mostly I derp around on the Network, and I actually watched both parts of the ECW Exposed special last night, and it was really good!  Paul Heyman was shockingly honest with all the questions and really seemed to have things in perspective.  It was actually a really fun show.  I might go through and start watching some of the 95 Hardcore TVs now, in fact. ​

Comments

  1. Its a shame that the Hardcore TVs from 93-97 don't show the payoffs (Double tables/Gangtas Paradise et al).

    I am totally committed to paying for the network but some of these "tape trader" shows need to be added at some point to get the full scope.

    Its bass-ackward... First they had the PPV payoffs with no build... Now they have the build with no payoff.

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  2. Weirdly, I'm from the UK and my own wrestling fandom has increased over the last few months by not bothering with RAW, but instead watching Main Event, Superstars, Smackdown and any PPVs and interesting Specials. The only time my household has watched RAW in the past couple of weeks was to see Harper win the IC belt from Ziggler. And not once do I feel like I'm missing anything.

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  3. Another uk viewer.
    I watch matches which have got great reviews: for WWE on SKY, i record and skip Raw thorugh to the good bits.
    I really like NXT as well, and catch that most weeks. I have some imported PWG i need to get some time to watch as well/

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  4. Would be awesome to read rants from Scott on ECW TV that from that time period. I've been enjoying the '95 RAW stuff.

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  5. In some ways the Network has hurt the product because now you can go back and watch when it was awesome and see how everything they are doing now is so terrible. Okay ... maybe not everything, but close to it.

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  6. They do have some of the pre-ppv big arena shows up (Cyberslam 96, N2R95, Hardcore Heaven 95). They're in the vault under ECW Exposed.

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  7. Yet another UK viewer - I pretty much watch the highlights on Youtube (which I've noticed, for Raw at least, they've started reducing in number and staggering in release - no doubt because of the network) and then searching out anything more that might be of interest.


    Once they release the Network over here I'm sure that, for the first few months at least, I'll go into full on nostalgia mode - providing that we have enough content made available to us for me to do that!

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  8. The Love-Matic Grampa!November 26, 2014 at 8:41 AM

    Lucha Underground is surprisingly good. Short, simple and to the point.

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  9. ECW Exposed is the best original programming they have on the network thus far.

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  10. MaffewOfBotchamaniaNovember 26, 2014 at 9:06 AM

    ''Usual Jeff Jarrett borefest''


    Wait, wha? He's been great this year!

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  11. Yeah on Bret's second best of Colosseum video. It wasn't very good, surprisingly.

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  12. The only current shows that I watch are WWE PPVs on the network. And even those I watch on a delay so that I can skip over any matches involving the divas or Randy Orton. I'll occasionally check out something from a recent Raw on Hulu, but only if it is universally praised and it involves someone that I care to watch (i.e., not Randy Orton).

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  13. That's the thing with "monster" type characters. How do we really buy them as monsters when they have only ever had short bursts of being "dominant". It's not like they are Brock Lesnar or Vader (WCW version) where they actually dominate. We are just supposed to buy that Kane is intimidating because he's Kane

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  14. It's the kind of subtle storytelling that they should be doing on a regular basis. Big Show has the talent to pull it off. However, I don't have much faith that Vince or the writing team will stick with it for more than a month before they drop it entirely and go back to "look how big his hands are!"

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  15. If nothing else, they should have built Big Show up for a big money match at SummerSlam '99. Have him beat Foley, Rock, Taker, Kane, etc through the spring/summer and let Austin beat him at SummerSlam for a big payoff. Then move into the HHH stuff. Other than that big initial match with Austin (which they gave away on TV immediately), Show works better as a part-time sideshow attraction

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  16. Yeah. We already know he's a real-life anomaly. He's a giant. Why can't he also have a really volatile personality? Make him like the Incredible Hulk, where he's kind of a regular guy, but you won't like him (or trust him) when he's angry.

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  17. Haha. What a fun show too. I love those first few years of Survivor Series. The age thing is madness, thanks for pointing that out. Wow

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  18. I recall thinking at the time that the WWF was headed off the cliff creatively and that their run was over. Boy was I proven wrong soon after. WWF in 2000 was awesome and WCW was about to go on life support

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  19. I have literally never read that on here.

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  20. I know this is a "duh", but I could find the time to watch six hours of wrestling a week if the product was compelling.

    It's not, so I spend my time watching other things that actually are compelling.

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  21. You know what would get me to watch more pro wrestling? More Big Show face/heel turns. It's something the product is really lacking.

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  22. JeriShow was fucking fantastic.

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  23. Newark DE is a quiet little college town, home to the university of delaware. No buildings over two stories. That kind of place. So yeah, it's less shitty.

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  24. Speaking of wrapping up 1995, I just finished Titan Sinking last night. Hell of a read and highly recommended for everyone here. Thanks for the heads-up on the book, Scott.

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  25. I thought it was idiotic but also completely hilarious. My friends and I did Bossman impressions a lot around this time because he said so many ridiculous things in his ridiculous voice.

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  26. Yep obviously Jericho ruled during that period but they really found a good role for Show there as well. It's just about finding the right Heel to put him with.

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  27. I highly approve of your profile pic.

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  28. yeah but it wasn't real, and the acting was too bad to suspend disbelief, so that takes away the sadness they wanted us to feel, and we were left with a really laughably bad farce.

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  29. And I will say that while Kennel from Hell was obviously crap, I also quoted "Ayul Snow! I bet choo thought it was reeeeeal funny last THURRRRSDEE naght when I fed yer little dog Payupper to yewww" a lot with my friends. Bossmania.

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  30. Haha thanks for noticing. Nobody else has

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  31. I feel like there should be more odds as well as one person and only one person who overcomes said odds.

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  32. UK viewer without Sky Sports, so I spin through WWE Experience on Sundays (which recaps anything interesting from Raw/SD, is an hour long, and is presented by Renee Young - YES!). Otherwise, I'll catch good NXT matches, New Japan and I intend to jump on the Lucha Underground bandwagon.

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  33. Dolph Ziggler?

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  34. That's what confused me, I thought they were long done with each other by this point. Maybe the plan was to have the two of them start feuding again until Vader came in, at which point they decided to do the Yoko-Vader program?

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  35. I honestly felt like the main event of Survivor Series was almost booked in response to what LU is doing.

    It was very "cinematic" and Cena coming out to hug Ziggler at the end was, in my opinion, a nice touch.

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  36. ha ha... JARRETT. The guy is probably tied with Alberto Del Rio to be the single-most boring guy ever who is nonetheless still actually a competent wrestler.

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  37. I enjoyed it thoroughly. I'm not a bastion of good taste though

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  38. That was probably THE moment where I could no longer deny that wrestling was fake. Because if a guy gets thrown to the concrete floor from that high and has a puddle of blood beneath his head and his leg completely out of place, there's no scenario where he's not fucking dead.

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  39. You could be right as plans probably changed a lot in such a short space of time with WWF signing Vader and Nash & Hall deciding to leave the company.

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  40. There's a big difference between gay people and Goldust.


    But in all seriousness, I always kept reading that Hall hated working with Goldust at the time, but I don't know the specifics of the story and why exactly he hated it.

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  41. To the original e-mailer, I'm actually kind of jealous of your ability to see the product through a fresh set of eyes.


    For instance, I think that Trips and Steph have been PHENOMENAL in their roles as heel authority figures, they're masterful at condescension and corporate double-speak, but it's also a role that I've seen in countless forms over the last (almost) twenty years. To me, it's like watching the same movie being remade over and over; even if the new version features great actors that I like, it's still the same story and I know all of the beats. I've greatly enjoyed watching Trips and Steph over the last year, but it's not new or exciting or innovative to me; it's good enough to keep me watching, but not good enough (to me) that I'm telling everyone I know to check it out. The same holds true of the product as a whole.

    So to you, original e-mailer, absolutely enjoy this time being a new fan. One of my best friends just got back into wrestling about two years (after not watching for about a decade), and it's cool to see his excitement and enjoyment over things that I personally find repetitive and generic. Welcome to the wild and wacky world of professional wrestling - if you're one of the people that "gets" it, you'll likely enjoy it for many years to come.

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  42. Think the last Raw I've seen in full was the RawAfterMania, which is always guaranteed to be a good show. Apart from that the only bits of Raw I've seen was reading reviews to see if there was a great match on the show and if there was then I'd youtube it.

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  43. that's pretty much what I do

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  44. Does today's DVR help or hurt the product? In 1998, If I wanted to watch raw quickly, I had to record it by VCR, but the matches and promos were super short (don't touch that dial). Today, I can watch the entire show in 30 minutes by fastfowarding commercials, promos, diva/lowcard matches and super long matches.

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  45. Because he sucks and was boring, I guess.

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  46. I don't think it's that "weird" at all.

    for example: when I first "discovered" rap music, it more or less stopped listening to any other genres for several months (because I was so enthusiastic about my newfound "thing").

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  47. The best days in the UK were during the Monday Night Wars when everything aired on Friday night, when my routine would be something like Nitro 9pm-12, Thunder 12-2am, Raw replay 2am-4am. Fuck going out on Friday nights, I have seven hours of wrestling to watch.

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  48. While I understand why you and many others don't find anything special about Cena, there are millions out there that do.



    To me, it's not even that Cena himself or the Cena character is the issue, but that there's literally NOBODY else on his level. When Hogan was on top, you also had guys like Warrior and Savage who were *almost* as popular, and when Austin was on top, you had Rock and Foley in the same roles; not to mention your Dibiases, Perfects, HHHs, Takers, and Jerichos as great "upper tier" characters, and then also great in-ring workers like Bret, Shawn, Benoit, Angle, etc. At any given time, there was something for everyone, with many wrestlers all being pushed and protected simultaneously.

    Over the last ten years, though? No. They tried making Batista and Orton into the new "Warrior and Savage"-esque guys, but neither took off. They came really close a few years ago, by positioning Cena and Punk as polar opposites that cater to different demographics (with Sheamus as a more old-school third option), but we all know how Punk was forced to work under the "real" stars while Sheamus got turned into "Sheamus O'Cena".

    If there was more variety, I don't think people would be so harsh on Cena. It'd be one thing if he were marketed as the MAIN attraction, but he's marketed as the ONLY attraction.

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  49. "I'm sure there's a continuous influx of new viewers every year:"

    case in my point: the husband of friend of mine started watching regularly in 2014. there has been a new tv deal here so Raw is now back on free cable instead of pay tv - where it was for several years. he is one of those people who knew I was into for years and while channel flipping on night decide to check it out for himself. afaik hasn't missed an episode of Raw since.

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  50. Those were the good old days weren't they *wipes tear from my eye*

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  51. And that's why they killed the midcard

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  52. Off topic, but This Day in History:
    Starrcade
    November 26, 1987
    UIC Pavilion, Chicago, Illinois
    Attendance: 8000

    The previous two years, Starrcade had been held in Greensboro and Atlanta. The combined attendance each of those years was nearly 40,000. From a financial point of view, leaving the Greensboro Coliseum and The Omni was a huge mistake. Fans in Greensboro never forgave Crockett for taking away Starrcade.

    - Sting, Michael Hayes and Jimmy Garvin wrestled Eddie Gilbert, Larry Zbyszko and Rick Steiner to a draw.
    - UWF Champion Steve Williams def. Barry Windham
    - Night of the Sky-Walkers II: Rock N' Roll Express def. Midnight Express
    - NWA TV Champion Nikita Koloff def. UWF TV Champion Terry Taylor to unify the titles
    - World Tag Team Champions Arn Anderson & Tully Blanchard def. Road Warriors via DQ in one of the worst booking decisions ever
    - Dusty Rhodes def. U.S. Champion Lex Luger in a steel cage to win the title
    - Ric Flair def. World Champion Ron Garvin in a steel cage to win the title

    WWF Survivor Series
    November 26, 1987
    Richfield Coliseum - Richfield, Ohio
    Attendance: 21,300

    - Elimination Match: Randy Savage, Ricky Steamboat, Jake Roberts, Brutus Beefcake & Jim Duggan def. Honky Tonk Man, Hercules, Danny Davis, Ron Bass & Harley Race
    -Elimination Match: Fabulous Moolah, Rockin' Robin, Velvet McIntyre & Jumping Bomb Angels def. Sherri Martel, Glamour Girls, Donna Christianello & Dawn Marie
    -Elimination Match: Strike Force, Young Stallions, Rougeaus Brothers, Killer Bees & British Bulldogs def. Hart Foundation, Demolition, Dream Team, Bolsheviks & The Islanders
    -Elimination Match: Andre the Giant, King Kong Bundy, One Man Gang, Rick Rude & Butch Reed def. Hulk Hogan, Bam Bam Bigelow, Paul Orndorff, Don't Muraco & Men Petera

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  53. I often wonder if WWE would be better off instead of showing 3 hours of Raw and 2 hours of Smackdown, if instead they'd show 1 hour of wrestling everyday. The main thing that scares me off watching the current product is that I feel 2-3 hours is too much of a commitment to sit through.

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  54. My wife's favorites are probably Ambrose and Ziggler. She's always upset that we just barely missed Undertaker, Bryan, and CM Punk.

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  55. They sure were. I think sometime in 2000 TNT folded and WCW moved to Bravo, and they made the dumbass move of sticking Nitro on Thursday, which was officially Mum's TV Night where she watched ER and Friends and whatever else. I didn't get to see WCW again. I think they dropped Thunder entirely on Bravo.

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  56. Eh, the difference being we get two matches from two years mixed up... but we remember them. I remember being really excited for that Razor/Yoko match.


    Now, we get Ziggler/Cesaro on every other RAW and we remember none of it.

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  57. Another reason to bring back jobber matches. It makes star v star matches more memorable.

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  58. I feel the same, however, I always occupy myself with something else while I watch it.

    For instance, I watched most of Raw while reading the Shining.

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  59. Yeah WCW moving to Bravo was around the time I stopped watching it too, but that was mainly to do with how horrible the product was, which is some pretty amazing talent on WCW's part as I was a huge wrestling geek that would watch ANYTHING wrestling related yet the product WCW was showing was enough to put me off.

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  60. I'm planning to. I'm looking forward to sharing wrestling with my kids (all girls, but that shouldn't keep them from enjoying it), and I'm looking forward to the next great shift in WWE programming. I'm excited to be somebody who gets on the bandwagon before it gets rolling, kinda like becoming a Seahawks fan the year before Russell Wilson was drafted (they were 7-9 that year). I'm really excited to see some of the guys coming up through NXT hit the main roster (Sami Zayn especially).


    I don't make a very good bitter fan--it's not in my nature, but I know the shiny newness will wear off sooner or later.

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  61. Did you ever catch any WCW on that German DSF channel that was on the old analogue Sky system? I remember them showing Halloween Havoc and most of Road Wild 98.

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  62. I watched the German channel sometimes, but didn't know they showed WCW PPV's, I thought they just showed WWF PPV's. I also use to watch Eurosport where they showed Japanese/obscure wrestling type stuff. And if you remember there was also that short lived British promotion in 2000 that was shown on Live TV (think that's what it was called, the softcore channel).

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  63. This is all subjective of course, and I can definitely understand why you'd say Del Rio was boring (creative didn't really give him much for a lot of his run), but he clearly does not suck. He was one of WWE's 3-4 best workers, arguably the best, at the time he left.

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  64. while I agree with first sentence, the whole Ahmed angle seemed to be built on the idea that "liplocking" with another man in general is "disgusting".

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  65. I truly think WWE would be better off having a TV offseason. Wrestlers would be more fresh physically and mentally, the writing and booking would be better if creative had a defined "begin" and "end" timeline for each "season," and fans would be allowed to anticipate wrestling instead of being burned out. (You see how excited people get for the start of the NFL season? It's because they have the NFL taken away from them for a few months.)
    I'd have the WWE season premier in July (no PPV that month) to lead up to SummerSlam in August, and the season finale would be WrestleMania in early-April. As far as re-arranging the PPV schedule, move Money In The Bank to September, move Night of Champions to December, and get rid of TLC, Extreme Rules and Battleground or whatever the June PPV is now.

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  66. boxing and UFC don't have offseasons. Those are the closest comparisons. Wrestling has always been based on boxing in a kayfabe sense. Champions, winner's purses (back when they played that up and back when boxing had that too), top contenders, working your way up, etc. UFC is the most similar product now and it doesn't have an offseason either. With a champion who defends a title rather than playoffs or a tournament, an offseason doesn't seem to work. If everyone worked towards a seasons long champion like Ultimat Fighter then maybe, but it's not like USA would let it happen anyway and the lost revenue from 3 months of no house shows would be astronomical. And what about network subscriptions? Just not feasible.

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  67. WWE doesn't need an off season, but their wrestlers sure do.

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  68. agreed. I can't commit to staying up to 11:15 when I have to get up for work at 4 AM (stupid job). And if I DVR it, I hear all the big news by the time I watch it.

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  69. DVRs have hurt every show except live sports. I don't watch any first run shows on network live anymore, even if it simply means watching Big Bang Theory or Modern Family 25 minutes after they started so I can FF the ads. So from a revenue perspective, it hurts. But as far as quality? Not sure DVR has any effect. You try to put on the best show and keep people watching.

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  70. Steve Austin made his WWF debut at these tapings plus there was the first (and so far only) RAW Bowl. So Newark, Delaware got to witness at least a couple of historic occasions. That's an improvement over the usual nothing happening house shows.

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  71. Eh, I try not to get too defeatist about things.


    But yeah, it'll probably suck.

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  72. He's a guy who always gets tricked in matches, so the fact that he's always getting tricked out of matches is pretty good psychology...I think.

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  73. You know the current season is still ongoing?

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  74. "Even with a million championship reigns, the audience sees him as being on the same level as, say, Kane."


    Yeah, no. Despite being a fan of Orton, I mostly agree with you, but this is an inaccurate/bad comparison.

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  75. So goldust being out telegraphed that Ramon would win via casket scare? Strange way to telegraph that finish.

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  76. Machos finish was just an elbow drop.

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  77. I'm watching the next one, and this Issac Yankem guy looks suspiciously like director of hot dogs Kane.

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  78. Did this guy ever show up anywhere other than that In Your House?


    He went over like a fart in church with the live crowd, FYI.

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  79. I think he had a squash match on Superstars, but my memory sucks so really can't remember.

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  80. No I think they have a 22 episode order, they just do that cable thing where they break it up into random chunks, air 8 epiosdes in Oct-November and the repeats until March, here's 8 more new episodes, etc.

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  81. Bret and Shawn actually did a DCOR on a random episode of Superstars in 1990 when both in the Hart Foundation and Rockers, respectively.


    The Bret v. Shawn Blu-Ray shoot from a few years back has just about everything between the two that was taped for video or local TV (like MSG network or whatever).

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  82. Bob Holly buts out a pretty sick hurricanrana and jobs to an elbowdrop. Vince clearly had his finger on the pulse in 1995.

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  83. Yes. 99% sure it was over the future Scotty 2 Hotty.

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  84. o very accurate i would fuck with my de friends and call it the nj way and their retort was always the same "you jersey scum" lol. I worked at Sallie Mae there for 5 years and decided that was enough for me and moved back to the promised land (Northern NJ).

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  85. very true. I had a nice apt in Newark, alot of students lived in my building so it was great I could still act like a college kid on weekends lol even though bars close at 1am in de (bullshit!).

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  86. very bad opiate and heroin problem in DE though man, the kids in the hs were getting all fucked up. If I raised a fam in de i hate to say I would send my kids to a private school bc how bad the public schools are. Now where I grew up in NJ the Public Schools are great and nowhere near the issues.

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  87. and its the beach, not the shore. that used to grind their gears when Id be like "when we going down the de shore?"

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  88. your right, but Philly is less than a half hr away and the E goes through their once a month at least and always gave us at least one ppv too.

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  89. I went to Money in The Bank 2013, the one Sandow won.

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  90. no more 22 show seasons for them anymore. I think its like 16 now, maybe less.

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  91. hey at least in both places you can purchase "loosey" cigarettes at the bodegas lol.

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