Inside Pulse Wrestling » Mean Gene http://wrestling.insidepulse.com Wrestling news, rumors, reviews and commentary, from WWE to TNA to ROH and everything in between... Tue, 15 Apr 2014 20:57:45 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.8.3 Wrestling news, rumors, reviews and commentary, from WWE to TNA to ROH and everything in between... Inside Pulse Wrestling no Wrestling news, rumors, reviews and commentary, from WWE to TNA to ROH and everything in between... Inside Pulse Wrestling » Mean Gene http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/wp-content/plugins/powerpress/rss_default.jpg http://wrestling.insidepulse.com The View From Down Here – The Art Of The Promo http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/2013/09/02/the-view-from-down-here-the-art-of-the-promo/ http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/2013/09/02/the-view-from-down-here-the-art-of-the-promo/#comments Mon, 02 Sep 2013 10:00:19 +0000 http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/?p=159372 In the past week we’ve seen two promos that have received a surprising amount of attention from wrestling fans: The AJses and their talkings.

 

AJ Lee at the WWE cut a ‘scathing’ promo on the Total Divas reality shit TV show. It was a good promo, sure, especially for a WWE Diva, but it didn’t seem to push any of the storylines forward and was even hypocritical in some places. And it was almost completely ruined by the Bellas squealing like pigs at an abattoir and seriously bad non-acting from the others. Only Natalya reacted the way a Sports Entertainer should react, and we’ll get to that later. But it was a good promo in delivery; it was fine in content; it was hard to see where it fit in in terms of storyline.

AJ Styles at TNA on the other hand cut a promo to explain where his head’s been at. It was another good-ish promo, but during its course, he somehow turned a crowd that wanted to love him into a hostile one, and then somehow managed to get them back on side. He did not sound or look comfortable, and when he talked about ‘the guys in the truck’ it sounded like pandering. And he went on wa-a-ay too long. In delivery his promo was average at best; in content it was good; in storyline terms it was necessary and very good.

But neither were what I would call “great”.

 

So what makes a good promo? Well, as you might have been able to tell, there are three things I feel are important: delivery, content and storyline.

 

Delivery is first. You have to believe what you are saying, and then the audience will have a better chance of believing you as well. You need to have emotion, but the right emotion. And your body language and tone of voice have to match the words being spoken. John Cena will often cut a promo that is angry in the words used, but he is smiling and his tone is joking – poor delivery. This also includes length – too long and a promo loses its audience. See AJ Styles for an example of that.

 

Second is content. What you are saying has to be believable and has to involve, you know, wrestling. Listen to the promos from Hulk Hogan and the Ultimate Warrior prior to their Wrestlemania VI bout and tell me you wouldn’t want some of what they were having.

One other thing is you need to talk about your opponent. But if you put them down, then if you win you’ve beaten a chump, and if you lose it looks like a fluke or you look like a fool, and neither guy is helped by the outcome of the match. Better you talk up your opponents a little, and there are no finer exponents of that at the moment than Kazarian and Daniels in TNA, and back further, Arn Anderson was also supreme at this.

 

Next is storyline, either starting a new one or continuing an existing one. This is important. A promo for the sake of a promo might remind people you exist, but what purpose does it serve? There needs to be a valid reason for it.

 

Two other little things.

 

One – a stream of catchphrases do not a promo make. Sure, the Rock and Steve Austin used them a lot, but that was mainly for punctuation, not for pure content. Mr Anderson Kennedy Anderson needs to learn this.

 

Two – communication is a two-way street. There is projecting and there is receiving. This is why Natalya stood out. She looked genuinely pissed at what AJ Lee was saying, and let only her body language say that she was pissed. It was really good, and possibly (to me) the best part of the whole promo. While the others were doing banshee impersonations or fake yawning or looking like they were lost in a fog, Natalya was responding like a Sports Entertainer. And while we’re on the Bellas – do you hear Laertes heckling Hamlet during one of his famous soliloquys at Shakespeare in the Park? Did Mean Gene interrupt Hogan et al at Bash at the Beach? Did Cena interrupt Punks’ infamous pipebomb? No? Of course not; that’s because a person is making a speech and you respond to it without taking away from what they are saying. The Bellas were, quite simply, f*****g awful. Send them to acting school. Or something.

 

There are only a few promos that really stand the test of time, and only a few people renowned for nearly always cutting good ones consistently. Ric Flair was one of these people, always ready with his sharp tongue, but I’ve recently been watching all of WCW from 1996 and, boy!, did he have a lot of misses in that period, rambling, directionless promos. And yet when he was on form… well, look at his winning promo from Royal Rumble 1992 to see what sort of a talker the man really could be.

 

Professional wrestling does not exist in its own world between the ropes. There have to be reasons for what we see in the ring. And promos are the bread and butter of getting those stories across. And yet they sometimes seem to be the most under-practiced aspect of the arsenal of many a professional wrestler. It’s Sports Entertainment. That “Entertainment” bit needs to be as good as that “Sports” bit.

 

So, to finish:

 

Here are three of my very favourite promos:

Hogan joins Hall and Nash to form the New World Order.

The birth of Austin 3:16.

CM Punk’s recent “pipebomb”.

 

My 8 year old son’s favourite promo:

The Rock prior to the big 6-man Hell in a Cell.

 

And 2 guilty pleaure promos that I know I shouldn’t like… but do:

The Rock at Wrestlemania XX.

Vince Russo at Bash at the Beach 2000.

 

I know I shouldn’t like those last two because they break half the rules of cutting a promo. But sometimes the art – the entertainment value – overcomes everything else, and you’re left with something quite different indeed.
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Flatlining: Festivus (The Ryback, Lord Tensai, Ric Flair, Mean, Wooo, Bah Gawd, Gene) http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/2012/12/18/flatlining-festivus-the-ryback-lord-tensai-ric-flair-mean-wooo-bah-gawd-gene/ http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/2012/12/18/flatlining-festivus-the-ryback-lord-tensai-ric-flair-mean-wooo-bah-gawd-gene/#comments Tue, 18 Dec 2012 10:36:48 +0000 http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/?p=151459 Last month I said I’d do something in December, so this is it. I’ve had 2 different jobs since then, so I’ve had way better things to do than waste 10 hours writing something for 100 people…

Ten thoughts on the Monday 17th episode of RAW

1. Who the fuck are the faces on this show?

2. Ryblack is really short

3. Dreamer’s still hardcore

4. #ShutTheFuckUpLawler

5. Ryback de-push is lol-ing worldwide

6. How do you learn to fall off a 20 foot ladder?

7. Mmmmeeeeeeeean

8. Wooooooooooooooooooooo

9. Bahgawwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwd

10. Gene!

Final Resolution and TLC

Man, shit was tough over the past month. Even CB, the guy who loves everything, was posting shit like “I will stand this no more, motherfuckers, the line must be drawn!”.

With real life giving us tropical storms, floods, school shootings and various other horrible things, WWE and TNA really needed to provide us with an entertaining distraction. TNA provided us with Daniels vs AJ XXXVIII and Bully Ray fucking Brooke Hogan. WWE’s TLC featured some good booking. That Ziggler win? That Shield win? That Sheamus loss? Best PPV since the last time I said “best PPV”.

Year-end awards thingy

I have an apology to make: The following is lifted almost 100% from Gojira’s end of year thingy that absolutely nobody read or commented on.

Wait, what?

Alright, maybe he got a few comments.

41?

Damn.

I got shot in the face one time, got like 2 comments…

In any case, it’s the end of the year and 2012, for better or worse, was 12 months. Last year, Gojira presented The Biggest Hiccups of 2011, so logically it’s time once again for a meaningless award show. Besides, the pointless Slammys have already taken place.

This time, however, Gojira was focusing on multiple categories. It’s certainly more ambitious and he’s actually quite proud of what he cobbled together, so you’d better cast your votes this year in his comments section! His awards are WWE-only, since he rarely watches TNA (but he follows all the reports), I, on the other hand, hate both promotions equally.

 

Best New Superstar: Chavo Guerrero

This young Chavo guy, where the fuck did he come from? Would you believe he’s actually related to Eddie? Its not like Tenay told me that either, I had to google for hours just to find out.

For those of you that watch other shows than Impact, you might have seen this rising star on Ring Ka King back at the start of the year. It’s truly amazing that TNA managed to find such a talented individual as this and pluck him out of obscurity. Chavo had an astonishing debut and has went on to win the TNA Tag Team Title with some other guy they threw together because TNA are racist morons, but don’t let that put you off. I predict big things in this young man’s future

 

Match of the Year: Melina Vs Alicia Fox

ALL YEARS!

 

Workhorse of the Year: Sheamus

Sheamus won the Royal Rumble back in January  and was thrust into the main event scene about two months (and 8 matches against Jinder Mahal) later. Many believe in the Celtic Warrior so much that they’ve even went on record calling him “the next Cena”. One former Pulse columnist even went as far as saying “He’s been consistent since WrestleMania”. Indeed, Fella looked incredibly strong after his win within 18 seconds that night, and he’s been fantastic in the opening 18 seconds of every match since.

 

Most Entertaining Angle:
Kurt (with Karen coming in a close second)

This was a tough one, but Karen has been off our screens for quite some time. If Eric puts enough work in, he might find himself winning the award in 2013.

 

Biggest Disappointment: WWE Legends House

The plan was to have a Real World kind of show featuring crazy wrestlers from yesteryear. When the WWE Network was shelved, so was the show. SyFy were all set to air it at the start of April, but the program pulled a Scott Hall and now nobody will get to see Piper screaming about burnt waffles.

 

Biggest Surprise: The Ryback not smashing a car window with his elbow

With the NWO Shield all up in his business the past few weeks, we really should have seen this by now.

 

The “Not-So-Creative” Award: The Ryback

Brodus Clay made his début on the January 9th episode of RAW, squashing whoever the fuck WWE decided to put him in the ring with.

Lord Tensai made his début on the April 2nd episode of RAW, squashing whoever the fuck WWE decided to put him in the ring with.

The Ryback made his début on the April 6th episode of Smackdown, but nobody was watching, so we’ll call it April 9th instead.

Pattern, motherfucker, do you see it?

Book a new guy in a squash match again, motherfucker, I double-dare ya!

So after doing the same thing as the other two for a few months, he went on to repeat other events and eventually whole storylines. He was last seen losing 3 PPVs in a row.

 

So those are the winners for the 2012 Goji Whatever I’m Calling This Awards. Vote for your choices in the comments below and I’ll get some shit from Goj for ripping him off wholesale. Ah, the joys of Gojira stretching out a one-note column to two weeks worth of work. Gotta love the holidays!

So long, and thanks thanks for reading this pish.

 
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HULKAMANIA – With CB and KON (Hulk Hogan, Vince McMahon, Dixie Carter. Et tu, Brute?) http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/2012/05/22/hulkamania-with-cb-and-kon-hulk-hogan-vince-mcmahon-dixie-carter-et-tu-brute/ http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/2012/05/22/hulkamania-with-cb-and-kon-hulk-hogan-vince-mcmahon-dixie-carter-et-tu-brute/#comments Tue, 22 May 2012 16:00:15 +0000 http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/?p=142056 CB: Hey, I just read through our back and forth on the Ultimate Warrior, and I must say it turned out awesome. Speaking of which, I was wondering if our next wrestler we discuss could be The Miz…

…HA! Just kidding KON, as if anyone cares about The Miz in 2012 (what happened to all his IWC supporters, anyway? You know, the ones who said he was here to stay in the main event for years to come? Anyways, I digress…). I actually thought that since we just covered Warrior we might as well get one of the other big fish out of the way and talk about Hulk Hogan.

 

YAPPAPI!

 

KON: What’s your earliest memory of Hulkamania running wild, brother?

CB: “Well you know something Mean Gene…” <—- Those words right there still bring me back to the good old days of Hulkamania, with the charmingly canned promo segments, the training, the prayers, the vitamins, the 24-inch Pythons, the shirt rips, and of course  the “Whatcha gonna do, brother, when Hulkamania runs wild on you?!”, a rhetorical question of course.

I would say my earliest Hogan wrestling memory is when he was feuding with the Iron Sheik, but I really started loving Hulkamania like everyone else when he body slammed Andre at WrestleMania III.

KON: When he lifted the 1289437535893068690509688550897652 pound giant above his head and all the little Hulkamaniacs blew the roof off the arena, dude? Well I gotta tell you something, jack: that was before my time, brother.

I remember the Flair feud and the title v title match with The Undertaker. I ended up seeing most of the stuff prior to the Flair feud on VHS. Hulk’s cartoon was being repeated around that time as well, so he was still quite popular. He wasn’t my favourite guy at the time, but he was still good.

About a month ago, we were looking through my grandmother’s old photos to try and find something for the funeral. We found a picture of a four-year-old me wearing the WWF World Heavyweight Championship while striking a Hoganesque pose.

I kinda hit the tail-end of his popularity, but if you can remember him feuding with Sheik, he must’ve been fucking everywhere when you were little. The Cartoon, the album, the roles in Rocky III and No Holds Barred, the talk shows he did to promote WWF at the time, the shows themselves… What was it like as a fan to see your favourite guy everywhere?

CB: Well, the reason I was a huge Hogan fan was BECAUSE he was everywhere. For Hulkamania to reach me as a 5 year-old, Vince McMahon and WWF must have been doing something right. And, like everyone else my age, I not only remember Hogan being everywhere, I remember Hulkamania being in my house. I had The Wrestling Album, and my favourite line in the opening number was Piper saying, “Hogan’s such a yo-yoooooooo” because even back then I knew that meant Hogan was the hero and Piper the “bad guy”, so I understood Piper’s hate in those simplest of terms. 

I had the Hulkamania weights, the blue plastic dumbbells that came with an accompanying cassette tape. I had the Hogan wrist-bands, the Hogan Wrestling Buddy, and I LOVED the Real American theme once it was his. 

For all of that merchandise to reach my hands back in those days, it’s really a testament to the marketing behind Hulkamania, and also the fact that wrestling back then was on broadcast television on Saturday mornings in both regular and cartoon forms. 

As for the movies, I loved Rocky III and the whole Thunderlips thing was fun. I also loved Andre in The Princess Bride, too, which confused me since he was a good guy in the movie and such a bad guy in WWF when he was feuding with Hogan and part of the Heenan family. 

Like Warrior, I wished all those memories of Hogan could be the only ones I have today, but of course that’s impossible with the way things have gone for the Hulkster recently.

KON: Hogan held the WWF World Heavyweight Title for roughly 2000 years. At what point did you start to get bored with Hulkamania as a whole?

CB: I never really got bored with Hulkamania back then because at the time he was being phased out WWF really didn’t put him on TV all that much. After all, that was before the whole “longest running weekly episodic TV show” known as Monday Night Raw started its run on USA.

I will say though I liked Warrior more than Hogan at one point, and when Hogan beat Yokozuna it was a fun moment.

I soured on Hogan more when I got a little older, though, so by the time he was in WCW pre-NWO I was over it. I actually didn’t watch much WCW during that in-between stretch, so I was more into Bret, Owen and HBK, etc. at that point.

KON: They had a crazy amount of entertaining guys on their shows, very few of which suffered from overuse. Nasty Boys being maybe the only exception, one match from them was enough (which was lucky for them…).

When Warrior beat Hulk for the title, that must’ve been a clear sign that his time had passed. The Hogan vs. Undertaker match a year later was, again, Title vs. Title and he somehow managed to convince McMahon that Hulkamania was still running wild.  The loss to Yoko was really the only time that Vince put his foot down and Hogan, instead of accepting that he was no longer the top guy (even though he had been told as much for the past 3 years), ran over to WCW to fuck their programming up,

If you were in Hulk’s shoes just before the Warrior match at WrestleMania or the Undertaker match at Survivor Series, what would you have done?

CB: Back then, Hogan probably wasn’t ready to pass the torch. I think Hogan kept wanting more and more money but once the well from the 1980s boom dried up and the steroids scandal hit, it was over. Hogan left for the greener pastures of WCW, and by greener I mean MONEY MONEY MONEY MONEY MONEYYYYYY. 

Hogan probably also thought he was bigger than WWF, that he could go anywhere and succeed. For a little while, he was right. In the long haul, he was obviously wrong because he came back numerous times and now is languishing in TNA while doing Rent-A-Center commercials. I fucking hate those. 

Just like Warrior, it’s another childhood hero of mine who has really gone awry in my mind now that I see how flawed he is. What’s your take on your childhood view of Hogan vs. today’s perspective?

KON: I guess that’s what it all boils down to. We could talk about the Mega Powers, steroids, the politics, the nWo, the yappapi strap match, the  numerous WWE returns, the reality show, the tour of Australia with Flair, the TNA contract signing… but none of those things matter at this point. I’m sick of seeing him, sick of hearing about him, sick of all the news stories that come out…

It’s gonna sound weird, seeing as the guy hasn’t changed from his days with the AWA, but I guess I think of Hogan now as a different person than the guy who beat The Undertaker at This Tuesday in Texas. This old, broken, decrepit, lying, washed up guy on TV every Thursday isn’t an icon, an idol, or anything to be looked up to. As Sheik would put it: He’s not the Hulk Hogan, he is Hollywood blond piece of shit jabroni mother facker.

CB: Yeah, and I don’t know what’s sadder: Hogan being the way he is today; or the fact that people are still paying him to do stuff no matter how decrepit the whole things has become. 

Maybe Vince was right when he did this:

Or maybe it just seems right when applied to today’s version of Hulkamania…

KON: I dunno. That video still seems kinda hurtful. Vince didn’t give a shit about Hogan’s health, well-being, credibility or anything, he just wanted to take shots at two guys who left to make money.

What I was getting at with the last thing was, I guess,  what would you value Hulkamania at in terms of dollars?

CB: I’m sure Hulkamania is still worth millions without Hogan having to do anything, so it’s a shame that the people who get that money — Terry and his ex-wife Linda — are just going to waste it all away without adding anymore value to Hogan’s career or legacy.

KON: Is it worth that much though? Are the Hulkamaniacs from 20+ years ago going to be interested in buying an Immortal DVD set from TNA? Do they even tune into TNA? Hogan didn’t exactly have a huge, uh, impact on Impact’s ratings.

CB: How will you remember Hogan, taking everything into consideration?

KON: It’s hard to say how I’ll remember Hogan. If he kills TNA, I’m sure we’ll all remember that. If he were to die tomorrow, it’d be a shame that he never managed to realise what he’d been doing for the past 10 or so years. He was a man who had everything, and gave it all up for an extra 15mins in the spotlight.

CB: I agree with that KON … and that’s the shame of it all…

Thanks again for the chat.

KON: Thanks for taking part.

 

I think we uncovered the problem with this type of article. It’s fun to look back at the 80′s or early 90′s and talk about how good things were back then, but it would be incredibly hard to do one of these that doesn’t end with something along the lines of “it’s a shame.”

The business has changed over the years, and I guess an argument could be made that the stars of today won’t end up like Hogan, Flair or any of the other 80′s stars who continue to lead somewhat tragic lives. Maybe CB and I will discuss Cena when we’re in our 60′s, or maybe pro-wrestling will have been axed from all television stations by then, who knows?

I’ll tell you one thing though, I don’t think Terry Boulder would have said “I’ll still be wrestling in 30 years, brother!” before any of his matches in Shitsville, Alabama.
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Flatlining – With Blair, CB, DaveDubya, Gepp, Gojira, Newbury, Rey and Swayze (WWE, TNA, ROH, RCW) http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/2012/04/09/flatlining-with-blair-cb-davedubya-gepp-gojira-newbury-rey-and-swayze-wwe-tna-roh-rcw/ http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/2012/04/09/flatlining-with-blair-cb-davedubya-gepp-gojira-newbury-rey-and-swayze-wwe-tna-roh-rcw/#comments Mon, 09 Apr 2012 20:00:49 +0000 http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/?p=139557 Cast your mind back two weeks.  Do you remember Mark Allen’s opinion/news piece that received 30 or so comments?  One commenter, “Jeff”, said the following…

“I began reading Pulse wrestling a few years back and became a fan of the “old guard” such as Mark and Wheeler. When mark left, I felt that there was a void that had not really been filled. The only consistent, reliable weekly article was Wheelers, and now he’s not doing that either. The “new guard” is erratic and unreliable, and the articles are usually snarky and overly cynical. They just don’t seem to like much, or if they do, they use a hammer when a feather will do. Simply put, Mark is an excellent writer whose articles appeared at the same time each week and you knew what you were going to get. This is not the case anymore.

And no, this was not directed to any one person, but the direction of the site as a whole.”

To combat the cynicism, I came up with the idea for a round-table where we, the pulse columnists, talk about five things we do enjoy in modern pro-wrestling.  Ten people said they’d be up for it and the deadline for submissions was set accordingly, only two submitted their ”five things” at the time of writing (four by the time I submitted this to be published).

Dropping the round-table idea and writing something else was an option, but we’ve had yet another death in the family (third since December) and I have better things to be doing than brainstorming ideas for a column nobody reads.  Cynicism?  Sure.  Some of the other Pulse writers already covered the unreliable aspect, so I guess this column is actually working towards proving that Jeff was right.  This thing had to happen, so I also roped in some of the “Fistpump Screening Room” crew…

Blair A. Douglas (of MyDaughtersFuckingHulkHogan.com) presents: Five Things

1. Laughing at women’s wrestling. Matches where you really don’t know who is going to win.

2. Huge crowd reactions: Not Shaemus or Mark Henry crowd reactions, ACTUALLY strong.

3. Coming onto sites like this to see people’s reaction to stuff: It’s always good entertainment. It’s insanely unpredictable to see how people react to things, Sometimes I think I know what it’ll be and it’s the exact opposite.

4. Actual wrestling matches: With little to no overbooking, just wrestling that actually gets a live crowd hypedup. Rare these days, but it happens.

5. Shaemus. The occasional REAL moment: Flair’s WWE retirement, a cool Hall of Fame induction, things like that.

It’s hard to disagree with any of that.

Mike Gojira’s Stomping Ground: Five Good Things

1. Audience Involvement: It’s one thing to watch a TV show or sporting event and get emotionally involved, but it’s a whole ‘nother story when the performers actively acknowledge the fans in attendance.  Whether it’s last Monday’s raucous Miami crowd or any time John Cena gets on the mic, it never ceases to amaze me how the spectators can actually affect the flow of a match or angle based solely on their reactions.  Look at what happened to guys like Zack Ryder and CM Punk in the past year.  Lame designations like calling us a “Universe” aside, when you’re at a live event there’s just nothing like it.

2. Emotional Roller Coasters: We know that most aspects of professional wrestling are scripted, but there’s no denying that the vast majority of performers are in this business to achieve a level of notoriety and respect from the fans and their peers.  That’s why it’s so pleasing to us when guys like Stone Cold Steve Austin and Eddie Guerrero finally get the push we clamor for because we know they put all their effort into what they do and we appreciate them for it.  The more of a fan you are of a particular wrestler, the more likely you’ll be hooked when that certain someone finally gets that big break.

3. Stealing the Show: Wrestling isn’t just about the characters or the storylines.  Wrestling is about the matches themselves.  We often overlook the fact that some guys are crazy enough to kill themselves over a bump just to pop the crowd, while others are limited by time constrictions, but one thing’s for sure: when two athletes who mesh well go out there and are given the opportunity to showcase their talents and tell a story in the ring, we’re all winners.

4. Nostalgia: Honestly, who DOESN’T get nostalgic for the days of yore when a wrestler from our youthful days makes an appearance?  It happened when The Rock first came back as a guest host.  It happened when Bret Hart made his big return to the WWE.  It happened when the Four Horsemen were inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame last week.  Nostalgia acts bring in the casual fan and the fans who left for greener pastures, as well as give the hardcore fans a reason to keep tuning in.

5. A Break From Reality: Two full-grown men wrestle one another in spandex under hot lights for twenty minutes over a gold-plated leather strap.  That may be an accurate description of gay porn (I don’t watch, so I’m not truly sure), but it also represents the gist of professional wrestling.  Sprinkle in a dose of hostile takeover by guys who are trying to overthrow a company that pays them to commit these heinous acts, add a dash of supernatural persona, and mix in a heaping spoonful of suspension of belief: that’s wrestling in a nutshell.  Why do we continue to watch the insanity?  It’s an escape from the mundane.

 

Gojira has broken it down to the essentials.  I’d say those are the reasons we watch wrestling in the first place.

5 thoughts on Pro Wrasslin’ from Hack Newbury (of Spinebuster.com)

1.WWE DVD releases.

2. I like that Daniel Bryan is adored by the fans.

3. We have lots of options on the indy scene. I don’t love any of them and actively dislike some, like current ROH, but, it’s good that there’s a tonne of choice out there.

4. Fit Finlay hitting the indys. While I haven’t seen much of his run outside of one match with Steen, he sounds like he’s pulling a run like James Gibson back in 2005.

5. iPPVs are a cool addition, but, I don’t quite think that companies have them put together right.

I miss Finlay. The “divas” division does too.

Rey Mundo’s Suspension of Disbelief: Five Things! Five Things! Five Things! Five Things! Five Things!

Heeeeere we go:

5. Randy Orton’s facial expressions: This man sells with his entire body, including his eyes, eyebrows, earlobes, femur, lymph nodes… They happen so quick that it’s incredible. Dig it.

4. Booker T’s old schoolisms: He said someone or other should be barred from ringside because they didn’t have a manager’s license. Loved it.

3. Mark Henry’s Improv: How is it that this man is a plodding “Read the cue cards, Mark.” promo guy, but when he’s yelling at opponents or fans he’s a master orator? Either way, I love it.

2. TNA: Because, God bless ‘em, they’re still trying.

1. Kelly Floyd.

Wait, what?

I can’t?

But have you seen her ra…

Oh, okay

  1. The fact that, after being a fan for 25 years, I still have moments like at WrestleMania where I’m completely enveloped in what Hunter, Shawn, and ‘Taker were doing, and that, after The Rock got the three count I was literally shaking as I was trying to update Facebook and Twitter. I’m still a fan! 

Not reasons I necessarily agree with (with the exception of Booker’s commentary and maybe the existence of TNA), but that’s Rey for you.

Five Things Swayze Likes About WWE Right Now

1. WWE is all into CM Punk.

2. WWE is giving up on Cena, finally.

3. Lesnar is all into being in WWE for at least a year.

4. Jericho seems to be getting back into his groove.

5. Everyone likes Bryan and nobody likes Shaemus.

 

Cheers, Swayze.

 

Steven Gepp’s View From Down Here: Five Positive Things About Pro-Wrestling

1.Austin Aries and CM Punk: Two wrestlers in the so-called “Big Two” who are straddling that line between old school wrestlers who can actually, you know, wrestle, and modern day sports entertainers, who can talk and get a crowd into whatever it is they are doing.

2. Daniel Bryan, the heel: He can wrestle, we all know that, but the fact he doesn’t have to, but can play the conniving heel who treats his girlfriend like crap, and yet still get his “Yes! Yes! Yes!” catchphrase over and have people cheering for him while being the dickish heel is just awesome.

3. Bobby Roode vs James Storm: From their days as one of my all-time favourite tag teams to their break- up, to the built for their match at Lockdown, this has been 6 months of quite compelling story-telling. Even with Roode being a little bland on the mic, his actions and his attitude against Storm’s anger have been great, and yet it has not been overdone. They are not fighting one another every episode of Impact, they are just building to this potentially great confrontation.

4. WWE’s video library: The amount of DVDs I am getting hold of that tell another part of the history of wrestling, covering matches from all over the USA and from so many periods of recent televisual history is quite scaring, when I consider how much it all costs here in Australia. But, dammit!, I am hooked. I just want to see history DVDs about wrestlers, promotions, times, whatever. I hang out for each new one.

5. Riot City Wrestling: Well, what can I say? Best independent wrestling I have seen, not just in Australia, but anywhere, with the best women’s matches I have seen in years. A mixture of everything, and while not perfect (what is?), still the best wrestling I normally see each month. Sure, the PPVs from TNA and WWE might have some good matches, but the RCW shows, in general are better shows.

 

Good stuff, Steven, I’ll have to take your word on Riot City though. Chikara has the best independent wrestling I’ve ever seen, but I’ve only seen two or three of their shows (mainly their King of Trios series, which you should all check out).

Five Opinion-Facts from DaveDubya (of Wrestling Facts) 

1. Lots of Canadians seem to be involved.

2. Cage matches.

3. Scott Stanford as the new Mean Gene.

4. Lance Storm’s World of Hurt.

5. William Regal.

 

Again, kind of hard to disagree with any of that.  Have you seen the trailer for Piper’s version of World of Hurt? Absolutely amazing.

CB’s Slant – Five Things I Like About WWE

When KON told me about this idea to share five things I like about WWE, well, it wasn’t really that hard for me to put a list together. After all, I feel like I keep a pretty even keel about the folks over at Titan Towers, and some folks recently reminded me that I am one of the most upbeat writers that Pulse currently hosts.

I will say that while the glass is nowhere near rose-colored all the time when it comes to my thoughts on WWE, I definitely feel like I generally try to focus on the positive when it is warranted. After all, why watch if I can’t find SOMETHING — or things — to like?

With that said, here goes nothin’!

1. Production Values: I’ve said this for years, and I’ll say it again: When it comes to production values, WWE will simply never be topped. Every pre-produced video package to promote a big match or accentuate a feud is done to perfection by “the guys in the truck” and the producers at headquarters. 

Case and point: The Miz’ WrestleMania 27 pre-entrance video package last year, to the tune of Diddy’s Hate Me Now, was absolutely amazing. The video highlighted Miz’ journey from the Real World to WWE Champion, and just made his WrestleMania moment feel even more special that it was.

Another example, of course, is my favorite WWE video package of all time, featuring the build to Undertaker vs. HBK II. It doesn’t get much better than that, as WWE has shown time and time again.

2. Zack Ryder: From the Chopping Block to the Mid Card: One thing about WWE is that every once in awhile, a guy can carve his own path that was never in the company’s original plans. Zack Ryder is the ultimate rags to riches story in WWE, and no matter how you feel about his currently storylines and/or his character progression, the fact that Ryder is still with WWE and firmly entrenched in the Mid Card is absolutely awesome and worth savoring. Santino Marella is another example of this, and I simply root for both Ryder and Santino as a result of their passion and willingness to entertain at all costs across all platforms.

3. Ricardo Rodriguez: Ricardo doesn’t get a ton of mentions lately since he’s been off the scene for a little while, but there is nothing that draws me into the WWE Universe more than a role player who steals every scene with just sheer brilliance. Ricardo is funny when he needs to be, pompous when he’s living vicariously through his employer Alberto Del Rio and on top of all that he takes some good bumps and sells other people’s finishers well. He is also Del Rio’s ultimate sacrificial lamb, yet he still remains loyal to ADR no matter how many times Ricardo is fed to the wolves on Del Rio’s behalf.

4. The Royal Rumble Match: We addressed this a few months ago during Royal Rumble season, but it’s worth mentioning that no singular gimmick match in WWE is better than the Royal Rumble match. I love that there is only one Rumble match per year and that it not only kicks off the Road to WrestleMania but also has an extremely important prize for the winner: a title shot on the biggest stage of them all. There are also always cool surprises in each Rumble match — The Cobra / Socko Connection this year, for example — and it’s just always a treat to watch the different portions of the match as they unfold, such as CM Punk’s mid-Rumble promos or Stone Cold going on a Stunner binge.

5. Make-A-Wish and Tribute to the Troops: The charitable side of WWE should not be ignored when discussing positive aspects of the company. Two big ways WWE gives back is by granting as many wishes as they can for the Make-A-Wish Foundation (thanks to John Cena granting more wishes than any other celebrity in the history of the Foundation) and by performing for military personnel every holiday season with their Tribute to the Troops event that has been broadcast on both U.S.-based military bases and other U.S. military stations around the world. You can’t deny how awesome that is for Vince McMahon and Co. to do things like this, and it’s something that really does stick with me as a huge feather of good will in WWE’s cap.

So, there you have it. I’m sure I could even name a few more, but that’s all I got this time around. 

Thanks KON for being such a gracious host.

Thank you, CB. Now it’s time for…

The Martyrshow: For Jeff, by KON (of martyrshow.com)(that’s me!)

1. Developed Characters: Santino Marella reminds me of a time when characters could be funny, yet still taken seriously as competitors. Think about that Santino vs Swagger match and ask yourself who you’d really rather see hold a mid-card belt: The guy who’s entertaining, gets a reaction every time he walks down and has a move-set and gimmick that sets him apart from the rest of the roster, or Swagger? David Otunga is another guy with an entertaining character right now.

Mah Boy D-Bry right here has the whole wife-beating thing, a catchphrase and his own sort of in-ring style. Everyone on the roster should have those kind of things that you can point out.

2. Shoot interviews: Not exactly wrestling, but things like the Bret vs Shawn DVD set and the Legends Round-tables are bridging the gap. Nostalgia might factor into my enjoyment of these, particularly the Youshoot series, but the Legends Round-table show WWE does can often be quite informative and cover stuff from the AWA, WCCW and other organisations that I didn’t have the option of watching at the time (mostly due to not being born).

3. Longevity: As much as I hate Michael Cole’s kayfabed account of the record books, it does have a tiny bit of truth to it. Shows don’t often run for 19 years, most of the time they get cancelled just as you get into them. For the writers and the creative team, having decades worth of story-lines that you can build upon, call back to, reference or just rehash, that must be amazing. Think about how many story-lines you’ve enjoyed over the years, then think about what you’d be reading and watching if Monday Night RAW had been cancelled after 6 months due to poor ratings.

4. Discussions: I watch RAW with a chat-room full of good people. The worse an angle/match is, the better the discussion usually is. I got back into WWE (after a roughly 8 year long hiatus) during the Wrestlemania 27 weekend and if it wasn’t for the people in the chat, I would’ve probably given up shortly afterwards. A lot of the time, the discussion will be a lot more entertaining than the show it’s self.

5. All of the other reasons mentioned: It’s kind of hard to come up with something that hasn’t been said already. Blair, CB, Dave,  Mike, Jack, Steven and Swayze all listed good things. Rey? Well, he listed things too. I’d like to thank the eight of them for taking part in this.

I’ll be taking a break for the next few weeks, but I’m sure you’ll find something else on here that’s worth reading.

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The Martyrshow: Post-Everything (Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, Billy Gunn, The Ugandan Giant Kamala) http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/2012/02/27/the-martyrshow-post-everything-hulk-hogan-ric-flair-billy-gunn-the-ugandan-giant-kamala-iron-sheik/ http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/2012/02/27/the-martyrshow-post-everything-hulk-hogan-ric-flair-billy-gunn-the-ugandan-giant-kamala-iron-sheik/#comments Mon, 27 Feb 2012 21:00:47 +0000 http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/?p=136723 WWE are about to launch a TV network (or they’re about to pull-out of launching a network, who knows?) and they have been using the internet to try out some of their ideas for shows:

Idiots Fall Over with Dolph Ziggler

I Talk To People In The Funny Accent And They Laugh At Me with Santino

Lets Shit On Some Old Stuff Nobody Really Cares About with Road Dogg and Josh Matthews

WWE Used Me To Feed Cena For This Rock Thing At ‘Mania And Now I’m Jobbing On Superstars, Fistpump! with Zack Ryder

The main attraction on the network seems to be this Legends House thing. The concept is simple (and not at all original): You throw a bunch of has-beens into a house, provide alcohol and watch the ratings soar. Roddy Piper, Jim Duggan, Mean Gene and The Iron Sheik are all rumoured to be appearing.

Sheik (with the help of Eric Simms) has managed to stay relevant thanks to appearances on Howard Stern, shoot interviews and basically turning his whole life into a work. He’s done this without McMahon’s help and I’m sure Vince will use this show to exploit every penny he can out of him.

Kamala recently had his leg amputated. Do you think WWE will throw him a bone (no pun intended) and give him a slot in the house? How about Perry Saturn, the life of whom really went to shit after he left WWE? How about Billy Gunn, who now sells phone-calls in order to pay the bills? How about Chyna and a number of other divas who either got into porn or just went fucking nuts after leaving the business? How about- nah, fuck it, I’d be listing names for the rest of the day and my deadline is in like 3 hours.

I don’t want to make WWE look like a cavalcade of c**ts here. They kept Droz on the payroll after his injury, they provide doctors and pay for surgery, they spend a ridiculous amount of money on grapes rehab for guys like Matt Hardy, Scott Hall, Sean Waltman… I think the WWE Wellness Program is fantastic and they should really go out of their way to show the good something like that can do. It’s not like all those people are fucked either, they can still make money from DVDs, shoot interviews, books and so on.

Mick Foley has done really well with his books and even toured a “stand-up comedy” show based on his career. Chris Jericho has written some great books as well. Ric Flair – ha! – Ric Flair now sells phone-calls and everything else he can get his hands on.  It looks like the best thing to do right now is to retire in your late 30′s and live off your brand/name/reputation.

WWE publish most books “written” by wrestlers and they seem to be making a move into the shoot interview market with things like the Shawn v Bret DVD set, so how long before we see a DVD published by WWE that features Orton shooting on things from 6 months ago? How long before we see YouTube shows featuring Ziggler talking about how shit the match he had 30 mins ago on RAW was? It’s not inconceivable; Hulk Hogan gave several interviews which included the line “It’s a work, brother!” during TNA’s UK tour last month.

Hulk has “wrestled” for 35 years and held the top spot in the largest two companies the business has ever seen. He’s made an album, a cartoon, a TV show about a speedboat or something, multiple movies, a juicer, two reality shows, two videogames and is currently under contract with TNA.

Hulk has about $300,000 to his name.

If you’re a guy trying to break into the business and you find out that wrestling’s biggest ever star has nothing to show for it, wouldn’t you be like “Fuck this”? Not every wrestler goes through a terrible divorce, sure. Maybe only a few have watched their offspring grow into murderers, but Hogan made upwards of $1.5 million per PPV appearance in ’97.

$300,000, American.

Hogan still has an opportunity to make money right now, so let’s look at this Sorensen kid. Say the line from the doctors was a little worse and it turns out Sorensen can never walk again, what can he do?

  • He can’t write a book about his years in the industry because he’s only 22
  • He can’t do shoot interviews because the majority of people didn’t know who he was until Ion jumped off the rope
  • He can’t sell “Best Of” DVDs because he hasn’t had any memorable matches
  • He can’t sell merchandise because he was really generic
  • He can’t make appearances at signings because he was never over
  • He can’t show up at indy shows because his legs don’t work

Thank fuck he’s gonna be recovered and ready to return in 12 months, eh?

 

This is more of a “10 Thoughts” style thing than what I normally write. Check out Blair’s Air Up There from 2 weeks ago if you want to read a proper article on the things this business can do, I just wanted to write down my thoughts about Sorensen and the situation a lot of wrestlers find themselves in when they can no longer “compete”.

Why do you guys/girls think that so many of the people we grew up watching have ended up in the gutter?

Do you think the WWE Network will do anything other than exploit former stars?

Who do you think managed to maintain a normal life after their career ended?

 
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Zack Ryder: Z! True Long Island Story Episode 23 (Mean Gene “Brokerlund”!!!!!) http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/2011/07/22/zack-ryder-z-true-long-island-story-episode-23-featuring-mean-gene-brokerlund/ http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/2011/07/22/zack-ryder-z-true-long-island-story-episode-23-featuring-mean-gene-brokerlund/#comments Sat, 23 Jul 2011 02:28:20 +0000 http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/?p=125928 The latest episode of Zack Ryder’s YouTube series, Z! True Long Island Story is now up!

In this episode (Episode 23), Mean Gene kicks things off with a great cameo, plus the Ultimate Broski squares off against the “Ultimate Warrior”!

Also, blink and you might miss appearances by Joey Styles, Justin Roberts, Curt Hawkins, and more!

You can view the episode here.
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