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QOTD 104: Harold Ramis Appreciation Thread

A psychologist said to me, there are only two important questions you have to ask yourself. What do you really feel? And, what do you really want? If you can answer those two, you probably can leave your neuroses behind you. - Harold Ramis (1944 - 2014)


Harold Ramis died today. In case some of you hate laughter, or are young and hate laughter, Harold Ramis was kinda sorta the Judd Apatow of his time. He acted a little, wrote a little, produced a little, directed a little, and when you look back on his career, you see his hands in about a dozen or so classic movies, and a few really good ones, too, including:  Caddyshack, Groundhog Day, Analyze This, Stripes, As Good as it Gets, National Lampoon's Vacation, Back to School, Ghostbusters (I and II), Rover Dangerfield, High Fidelity Stripes, Knocked Up, Stealing Home (a person favorite of mine), and a bunch more. 

What are your favorite Harold Ramis movies, or movies with Harold Ramis in it?


I know most of us are busy fighting the WWE to get the network stuff up and running, but I figured I'd just post this in honor of perhaps the more talented comedic character actor / writer of the 80s.

In fact if you look back at that 80s era - you can almost see analogies to the now somewhat begone Apatow era - Bill Murray, Chevy Chase, Dan Aykroyd, and other SNL / SCTV alums popping up and Cris-crosing with eachother throughout quite a few popular movies. In fact he popped up in Knocked Up and Walk Hard as perhaps a pseudo passing of the torch

What say you, Otters? Below is a photo of the man looking like your Jewish Uncle.


Comments

  1. So many to name. Ghostbusters, Groundhog Day, Vacation... even his small(er) part in Orange County. He was a true comedy legend.

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  2. Caddyshack. This man was a genius. Rip egon

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  3. Back to school was so goddamn funny

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  4. How do you not mention Stripes!

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  5. Orange County was so good!

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  6. The first half of stripes is so fucking great

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  7. haha I missed it my bad

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  8. Ghostbusters is still to this day one of the all time perfect movies. Comedy, horror, slapstick, geek science. It taught 8 year old me a lot about what it meant to be funny. I used Peter's "You're going to miss me when I'm gone" when flirting as a little 3rd grader years before I would have known what to do with a girl if I got her (play GI Joes?) The soundtrack of that movie is even awesome, and the Elmer Bernstein score takes a movie that is fundamentally a little silly and elevates it to actual cinema. Can't say enough about it...and that's just ONE of the movies Harold Ramis brought the world. Amazing.

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  9. I just added it to make you look bad :)

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  10. Watching SCTV clips on Youtube the rest of the day. The wrestling network can wait.

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  11. Agreed, and his bit was one of my favorites. Old Man Ramis tripping balls = hilarious.

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  12. Agreed. It gets better with age too - you see it as a kid and its one thing, then as an adult it's a different thing. Rick Moranis was great in that too.

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  13. "The Judd Aptow of his time." Except he was freaking HILARIOUS.

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  14. Judd Apatow movies are pretty funny - 40 year old Virgin, Knocked Up, Dinner for Schmucks, Walk Hard, Bridesmaids, and a bunch of other movies all have Apatow involved in them in one way or another.

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  15. He also co-wrote the screenplay for Animal House (although he didn't direct or appear in it).



    The movies that to me hold up the best are Ghostbusters, Groundhog Day and maybe Stripes. Perhaps it's not a coincidence that those the

    Caddyshack is a movie that hasn't aged well for me. I always thought it was overrated. Which doesn't mean I think it's bad - I just don't think it's the classic everybody else does.


    Bedazzled isn't a great movie, but worth watching for Elizabeth Hurley's outfits...

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  16. Dinner for Schmucks is not a Judd Apatow movie

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  17. I agree with Caddyshack. I think it was a great comedy, but it felt like a buncha good friends dicking around with a camera to make people laugh - which is fine, but a general lack of plot / heart kind of makes it a great 'flick' but not a particularly...pungent one when it comes to themes / emotions / and so on. Though Bill Murray in that flick, hoo boy.

    Groundhog day is STILL a classic, and there's so many cool theories on that movie about hell and heaven and purgatory. It's incredible.

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  18. But it would not have happened had Apatow not ushered in the Era of Paul Rudd and Steve Carell into the big screen.

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  19. Even when paying tribute to someone you still have to try and get the Otters thing over- even though everyone hates it?

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  20. I sort of dislike everything he's ever done except The Cable Guy, that's some goddamn art right there.

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  21. 40 Year Old Virgin, yes. Everything else is shit.

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  22. The Cable Guy reminds me of the Family Guy joke about SportsNite "It's...too good...to be funny"

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  23. It's the comedic version of Full Metal Jacket basically.

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  24. SCTV is AWESOME. Probably the reason I never connect with anyone is the fact that I power-watched SCTV as much as I could when I was young, by watching midnight reruns on PBS in high school.

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  25. I disagree and I have about billion dollars in box office backing me up.

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  26. I don't know, man. Full Metal Jacket is pretty funny in its own right.

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  27. Sir I was six seconds away from making this the splash page: http://ts4.mm.bing.net/th?id=H.4820835774497514&w=259&h=176&c=7&rs=1&pid=1.7

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  28. By that standard the Transformers is one of film's greatest achievements.

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  29. Behold the magnificent cultural monument that is Avatar!

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  30. I actually think it's a little better than most people give credit for, but my point is obviously it appeals to enough people to not be total shit, so while YOU may not enjoy those films, naturally others, including me, do.

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  31. Sad news. Ramis was a part of so many great movies that it seems unfair to name a favourite, but Ghostbusters is a classic and an integral part of my childhood; so I'll go with it.
    Having said that, it wasn't very successful at the time, but The Ice Harvest is definitely worth seeking out.

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  32. That movie is weird. You see it once you're like YEAH! a second time you're like, this is fucking stupid. Then you see it on Basic Cable and it sucks you in just like Terminator or Titanic.

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  33. Dinner For Schmucks was better than I thought it would be, but I heard the French version is so much meaner. I want to see it

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  34. Ghostbusters, Groundhog Day, Stripes, The Ice Harvest. Really, did Ramis do anything that WASN'T awesome?

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  35. IMAX or don't freakin bother, that's how I feel about the Hobbit movies as well (but I never grew up a Tolkien kid so whatever)

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  36. I collect spores, molds, and fungus.

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  37. I thought that movie was going to be stupid too, but I ended up liking it a lot. Kind of actually had a 'cable guy' vibe where you just kind of feel antzy the whole time.

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  38. Talk about beating a dead horse into the ground. A very very dead horse

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  39. No, this isn't a good argument.

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  40. Well what's a good metric for figuring out if you have bad taste or if something is fundamentally bad? Meta Critic? Reviews from Famous Movie Critics? Surely you can't say just because YOU (or, well, Brocore) hate something that it's objectively bad.

    You guys hate otters but seemingly everyone else loves them.

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  41. Otters isn't a good argument either.


    The Transformers movies are among the highest grossing films of all time. They are borderline unwatchable. Look at the Twilight series.

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  42. Dinner For Schmucks is one of the worst movies I have ever seen.

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  43. Vacation, Caddyshack and Ghostbusters. 3 of the best comedies of all time. And Groundhog Day is one of the best movies period.


    REALLY have no desire for a Ghostbusters 3 without Egon.

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  44. Frankly I never understood what was so great about stuff like Animal House and Ghostbusters, even as a kid I just never really found them funny. (Stripes is unbelievable though)


    Groundhog Day, however, is like...one of those movies they could use in university classes to get people thinking about the nature of reality. What a fantastic, charming movie with endless rewatchability, a real masterpiece.


    RIP to a great writer/director/producer/actor

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  45. Watch the making of Caddyshack and you'll see that's EXACTLY what happened. There was this coming of age story about Danny but they had SO much hilarious material that the plot was sacrificed.

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  46. Agreed. And I LOVE Carrell and Rudd.

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  47. Cable Guy is so much more relevant now than when it came out.

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  48. The accounting party scene is totally adlibbed.

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  49. Groundhog Day is a MASTERCLASS in continuity and production design. Getting that movie to look the same every scene is hard!

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  50. Big fan of Ghostbusters, Caddyshack, Animal House and Groundhog Day. I probably watch all those once every couple of years if not more. Damn this sucks.

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  51. He's meaning that it feels like two different movies which I've ALWAYS said. Stripes for me is over once they go through training. Same with FMJ.

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  52. I honestly had little desire for Ghostbusters 3 before today. They all seem just a bit old for it. Also Murray never seemed to want to do it and I don't want to see an apathetic Bill Murray.

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  53. One more thing, Ackroyd's original script for Ghostbusters was a trainwreck full of time travel and giant monsters until Ramis rewrote it as a story of 3 guys going into business for themselves.

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  54. Re: I don't think Michael Bay will get the credit he deserves for those flicks.
    To evoke the relatively believable performances he does from actors who
    are largely playing against empty space is a feat. Especially when you
    consider the relatively sub-par performances in other Sci-Fi CGI fests
    like Green Lantern or the wooden nature of the Star Wars prequels. The
    characters are funny, and human, and we like them despite their one dimensional nature.

    There's an awesome scene halfway through the movie where bumblebee transforms, shoots Sam out of the drivers seat, shoots robots, then transforms and catches sam, all in one seemless, not-fake-looking shot. That shit is HARD.

    I don't know what to say. Things blow up real good, and the flick really is a triumph of graphic art, computer and practical special effects. You get ups and downs, cheeseball lines and melodrama, but my god does stuff blow up real good. Alas, every critic I know and respect (and I hope wants to hire me) is going to tell you Transformers, is a waste of your time.

    But what a spectacular waste it is.

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  55. Other than reading this QOTD, I have never heard of this guy.


    Of those movies listed, I've seen Groundhog Day and I think that it's brilliant, so if he was involved in that then bully for him, and I am sorry to see him go.

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  56. My idea was to have the Ghostbusters retired and franchising out the name. You have Paul Rudd, Seth Rogan, Danny McBride, and Michael Cera as the New York branch but since the originals saved the world twice, there really aren't many ghosts and they just sit around getting high all day until some new threat comes and they can't handle it and have to bring the originals back.

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  57. He directed Groundhog Day.

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  58. Ugh straw man argument. Why not just invoke hitler and be done?

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  59. He delivered my favorite line in Stripes, as Russell Ziskey:

    John Winger: C'mon, it's Czechoslovakia. We zip in, we pick 'em up, we zip right out again. We're not going to Moscow. It's Czechoslovakia. It's like we're going into Wisconsin.
    Russell Ziskey: Well, I got the shit kicked out of me in Wisconsin once. Forget it.

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  60. Race-Flair is coming up soon, and I wish the Network had some way to get backstage audio of Tommy Young mot likely throwing a fit at Kiniski's shit refereeing and wondering how much money he lost not working the main.

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  61. Good God Almighty, He's Been Broken In Half!
    Destroy your XBox when the WWE App won't let you sign in

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  62. Those titties were not shitty.

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  63. gotta wonder how bad the ratings might be tonight if everyone (else) is on the network.

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  64. "WWF" when said aloud seems to be censored about half the time, at least in Royal Rumble 2001.

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  65. Halloween Havoc 1990. Orange ring and ropes. Starts off with Midnights vs Tommy Rich and Ricky Morton. should be good!

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  66. First time post, long time lurker. The Network is awesome. Would be even better if I could watch on the 360 though. Watching Capital Combat 1990 - Undertaker vs Johnny Ace! Next up Music City showdown! PWI almanac is coming in handy.

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  67. Usual visitor to the blog first time posting seems to me the newer Ppvs I'm having better luck with than the older stuff at least through my ipad

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  68. First freeze, right in the middle of this classic Great Kabuki - Charlie Brown match. Brown looks a lot like Jimmy Valiant, but I'm sure that's a coincidence. 10 second freeze or so, not awful.

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  69. Not a Limp Bizkit fan at all, but Stone Cold/Rock "My Way" is the greatest promo package of all time.

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  70. Does your videos also take a while to load?

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  71. I wonder if they'll black out the network during Raw?

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  72. Yeah, like why even bother putting it on the 360 if people can't even access it there? And also, why bother making it easy to access for those with a PS3 and impossible to access for those with a 360 even though far more people have a 360 than a PS3? Their priorities are seriously screwed up.

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  73. It has a lot to do with approval processes and stuff. Sony tends to be a little easier to work with on these things. Microsoft is really finnicky.

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  74. Seems like Sid's leg injury at Sin is editted out

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  75. Give It Up Already!


    Start with Crockett PPV

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  76. Joined and running smooth as silk on my Droid. But, I can't seem to figure out how to get to the on demand library. Again, the live channel stream is working great. Any help? Thanks bod'ers

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  77. Shouldn't they be hammering that stuff down BEFORE the freaking launch?

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  78. Nothing noticeable. Every video and audio problem there has been other than that small freeze was original to the broadcast.

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  79. Catching up on NXT, and everything is running smooth as silk so far. Goodbye, other tv shows and networks. I'll be watching ALL OF THE WRESTLING.

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  80. tough time signing up after 10 am EST. Slow streaming around 1 pm EST. Still impressed by the content.

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  81. Using my PS3, channel finally works great but no archives or shows are working.

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  82. The network has already become self-aware and is merely trying to do you a solid.

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  83. THEY KEPT THIS IN! YESSSSSS!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3S9ODZCk0H4

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  84. Damn, I'm looking at these comments as I'm about to try to sign up for it now that I have time for lunch... Twi-hards, Whedonists, Trekkies... they will have nothing on us after a few months of the Network. We're going to out-nerd them all!

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  85. Half-way through my first PPV and the video suddenly goes from Hi Def to blocky rubbish before shutting down. Now all I can get is a message Media Error: video not available.
    Until this point I've had no problems

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  86. Because it's clearly a scam

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  87. Was able to get it working on the Roku.
    Pros: Live 24/7 channel itself works great, no buffering whatsoever.
    Cons: The so-called 1,500 hour on demand library only has about 5% of what WWE initially claimed it would have and none of it will even play.
    Now I know some people are trying to defend this by claiming "It's just the first day, this kind of stuff is expected to happen". Well, HBO GO and Epix On Demand worked right out of the gate from the first day onwards and hell, even TNA On Demand had a much smoother first day rollout. Don't they realize that when you roll out an On Demand library, people are supposed to, you know, actually be able to see it?

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  88. How's it running now for everyone? I just got out of work, the live feed seems to be running fine, but I tried watching that Countdown show in the archives and it would load, play for about 20-30 seconds, then give me an error.

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  89. So, help the uninitiated here: can I expect to be able to log into it on my 360, like, any time soon?

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  90. Anyone else not getting the app on Apple TV? I updated my system and everything. Nothing.

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  91. It was never shown on camera when it first happened, hence why it was replayed a million times on Nitro the very next night.

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  92. Kane randy Orton at extreme rules 2012 was actually pretty good shame it's the only show that seems to want to work ok could be worse could be stuck on kor 95

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  93. It doesn't work on 360?

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  94. It's the damn DVD version of the Wrestlemania 22 Trish/Mickie match.

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  95. There will be dinosaurs on your dinosaur tour right?

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  96. I'm still upset to find out there are no episodes of Prime Time Wrestling. That's the only thing I looked forward to...

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  97. Also, you can't search for Benoit matches.

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  98. Apple TV not covered yet.

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  99. No, Universal threatened to sue if dinosaurs were used so they will be replaced by mammals even though it will still be called the dinosaur tour.

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  100. Your_Favourite_LoserFebruary 24, 2014 at 1:38 PM

    i really didnt mean to offend you, fred durst

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  101. Yeah, it is. I just logged into it from my Apple TV.

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  102. I bet they pick up the 100,000 they lose from the Network with 100,000 Hulkamaniacs.

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  103. This is going to sound weird, but have you checked again in the past 5 minutes? I ask because it *just* showed up for me.

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  104. Yeah, no crotch grab and lick...

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  105. Why did you think that would be there???

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  106. Yeah, why do they hate making use of all the Gorilla and Bobby footage they have?

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  107. That's four... also boo to me for forgetting him.

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  108. Russell wasn't a ring announcer in the classic sense... Garvin was funny taking potshots at Valentine and Hart... and I wanted to mention the Japanese announcer in the strange suit on the Benoit DVD.

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  109. Pretty sure wrestling nerds already won the nerd battle.

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  110. Small can be nice, on the right frame. She had the right frame.

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  111. 30 Days?? Who the Hell watches Raw and Smackdown a month later??

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  112. I had the same problem...in the app, choose WWE Network...it should take you to the archive section...if it does,'t you're probably looking at the WWE Network "tap here to watch screen" with Steve Austin, the Undertaker, and that other guy on it...press the WWE logo in the top left...it'll bring you back to the archive section...that's what worked for me...

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  113. For a match, yes. Overall, I'll still take History of the WWF/Lonely Road of Faith.

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  114. Fellow Canuck here... Just curious on how you were able to sign up using a US address and PayPal. Was it just any US address? I'm also assuming it was PayPal through your bank account and not via credit card so as to avoid address verification. Really itching to get my old school wrestling fix.

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  115. 30 days? That's pretty disappointing. Wonder why the delay :(

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  116. We're the only group of dorks without a popular sitcom to make us look cool!

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  117. Can you tell me if 'Raw Is Benoit' is on the network?

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  118. The momentum has switched 360! Start the Network on a PS3.

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  119. Not yet. I just talked to a WWE rep and they said they were "working on it."

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  120. Anybody remember when The Movie Channel would frequently show R-rated movies that had nudity in the daytime? Nowadays, much tamer movies that show brief nudity gets relegated to late night. America really has turned into a bunch of castrated wimps when it comes to this stuff.

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  121. Especially if said battle is a pie-eating contest!

    Because wrestling nerds are fat!

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  122. I tried loading legends of wrestling and bunkhouse stampede 88 with same issues

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  123. The YAY! at the end gets a laugh from me.

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  124. A friend of mine is watching stuff now with no problem but I couldn't watch GAB 96 either, seems like the live feed is the only thing working for me right now.

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  125. NBCUniversal probably told them that any shorter delay = we're gonna offer less or outright cut you.


    Not like other networks are running to outbid them...

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  126. Anybody tied to Cash Money Records is fucking terrible as a general rule. Being atrociously terrible seems to be a mandatory requirement for getting signed to that label.

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  127. Ham an' Egger: Watch a Godwins match and Survivor Series 1990 before 12 noon.

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  128. Amsterdam_Adam_CurryFebruary 24, 2014 at 1:54 PM

    Limp Dick is on Cash Money Records? I like most Big Tymers stuff, but Lil Wayne is fucking awful.

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  129. So is anybody able to get the network to work on their 360 yet?

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  130. Yep, they're the only "rock" group tied to that shit sandwich of a record label.
    Bad Taste Records on the other hand, nothing but awesome.

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  131. Not that I've heard...

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  132. Amsterdam_Adam_CurryFebruary 24, 2014 at 1:57 PM

    Huh, I thought Durst and his merry group of douchebags was with Interscope. Actually, I'm more shocked that they're still active.

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  133. It's more about shape/form than anything, for me.

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  134. That sucks, hopefully they work that out by the time RAW is over. By the way, haven't seen you round these parts before. Welcome!

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  135. They were with Interscope until they broke up a decade ago. Ever since they reunited though, they signed up with Cash Money Records. Two bad tastes that taste a hell of a lot worse together.

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  136. The streaming isn't the chokepoint; the verification and billing system is. When demand is normal, billing will be able to handle day-to-day traffic, and streaming is already good-to-go.


    This was a well-planned, delibarately structured shortage. And as much as the fan and me shouts "Damn you, Vince!", the businessperson in me gives a hats off to making this go exactly as it should.

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  137. Imagine Lesnar vs Goldberg at WM XX if the audience had a 10 week notice that both were leaving. That's how bad the audience will be for Orton vs Batista at WM XXX. God this company is fucking stupid.

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