Minisode #185 Halloween with the Nephews

by iggy

October 29, 2010

Roddy Piper has Halloween rules.
Betsy Russell will kill the show.
Arby's chocolate turnover
Popeye and his nephews trick-or-treat at Blade's.
Blade has his own Halloween rule.
Satan uses Dutch Mantel.
Angry Jim made a UWF Haunted House.
Ultimate Kennedy asks what employees should smell like.
C.S. Irwin talks about Winter.
Brock stares at Undertaker.
WWE shirts are banned from the polls in Connecticut.

#slither #why is my life like this

Random Thoughts from the Office: October 29, 2010

"The more things change. The more they stay the same". Sounds like Snake Plisken was a prophet for the wrestling industry of 2010.

What an interesting few weeks it has been. There's no longer a official WrestleCrap forum, Brock Lesnar got knocked the fuck out and then the wrestling community lost their minds at the prospect of a Brock-Undertaker fight. As cool as their hell in a cell match was I feel the same way about a Brock vs Undertaker match as I do watching Kane vs Undertaker now. I've been there, I've done my time and it's not exactly high on the list of "Matches I want to see again".

Both companies have had pay per views and Bound for Glory was "Eh". I believe the term I would describe for it is a phrase that Scott Keith used in his reviews, that being "Entertaining Crap". I actually haven't seen Bragging Rights, the first wrestling pay per view since they were available I've ever missed, and to be quite honest there's nothing that makes me want to go out of my way to see it. I would say the Daniel(son) Bryan-Dolph Ziggler match, but really I've seen that twice already this week so why bother?

But for this week I'm going to go back to the door of TNA, and specifically the end of Bound for Glory and the reveal of THEY. We all knew it was going to be Hogan and Bischoff but the surprise was the Jeff Hardy heel turn. Surprising because no one would ever think TNA would be that stupid but surprising nonetheless.

The whole turn is an indication of something that really irritates the hell out of me in wrestling today in terms of how both companies, more often than not TNA but WWE are guilty of it too, book their shows. That thing being the writer/booker's incessant need to make things unpredictable, or to "swerve" the audience.

Again as I usually do right before I bash him, I have to say I love Vince Russo as a writer: A statement that would have a lot of people asking me to hand in my "Smart Mark" card. But the thing is he actually TRIES to be different and tries to include everyone rather than just the "Chosen Few". Some of his ideas have actually been quite novel, not always working but quite novel. Things like the King of the Mountain match became a trademark of TNA, the Main Event Mafia storyline was compelling television to me, the way he introduced Desmond Wolfe had people thinking he was the next breakout star of wrestling. I never get people who say Vince Russo is a bad writer, he has bad IDEAS yes, but he's not a bad writer.

Vince Russo though has one fatal character flaw, just like Stephanie McMahon has a fatal character flaw, just like Brian Gerwitz has a fatal character flaw and just like guys like Eric Bischoff have a fatal character flaw: They think they are smarter than the audience and as such they feel the need to make the unbelievable believable.

Let's go back in time to 1987 and the buildup to Wrestlemania 3. Andre ripping the cross off of Hogan on Piper's Pit. The whole fanbase believing Hogan didn't have a prayer of beating him, which was only backed up during the Battle Royal on Saturday Night's Main Event when Andre manhandled Hogan and sent him out of the match. Few people actually remember Andre didn't win that Battle Royal, he was ganged up on and eliminated shortly after but everyone remembers him eliminating Hogan.

It all built up to the big event at the Pontiac Silverdome, where Hogan slammed Andre and finally beat Andre clean in the ring. Was that predictable? Of course it was! But it made people suspend their disbelief and that is the key thing that will give you the keys to the kingdom.

Because even today as wrestling fans, we want to suspend our disbelief, we want to sit down for a couple of hours, forget how much our lives may or may not suck and lose ourselves in the world of wrestling. That's why Steve Austin was the biggest name in wrestling, because he was the everyman standing up to Corporate America. The fans suspended their disbelief and lived vicariously through him as he gave Vince McMahon hell on a weekly basis.

You want a more modern basis? Well let me ask you a couple of questions: How many of you...and be honest with yourself as you read through this. How many of you honestly with all your heart BELIEVED that Shawn Michaels was going to end the Undertaker's streak at Wrestlemania this year? Now I'm not trying to put words in people's mouths but I'm willing to bet that the answer is somewhat less than one in ten. Now, did knowing Shawn was going to lose and thus retire take away from your enjoyment of the match? Again without putting words in your mouths I'm guessing the majority of the answers are "No".

Now change this to Bound for Glory. You have two ready made storylines that while predictable are just sitting right there ready to go. Mr. Anderson, the Ultimate Asshole wins his way into TNA's fans hearts but has been focused on the one goal ever since he came in: The TNA Title and because he is an asshole, he gains Jeff's trust and right at the moment of his triumph takes him out and joins THEY. It's simple, it works, the fans want to kill him for using them. Jeff Hardy wants him for betraying his trust, the story writes itself.

On the other hand you have Kurt Angle. He has to win the gold or retire, there's no second chance for him, so to save his career and get what he so craves he does a deal with the devil and joins THEY to become the centerpiece of TNA once again. Hardy and Anderson, angered and hurt believing they're the new blood of TNA take the fight back to THEY and again, the story writes itself from there.

But Jeff Hardy, the guy who's a death-defying rebel. the man for whom there is no control, no limits, no motivation other than to give his heart and soul for TNA..he wants to join THEY why? Because no matter how stupid it seems, the powers that be think if you can see it coming you won't like it. Thus we always get the stupidest one of the three.

Now I know some people will say that the ring was pelted with garbage and such and it seemed to have heat and work. My answer to that is there's a difference between genuine heat and "This is Stupid" heat. Here's how you tell the difference for those playing the home game.

Hogan turning at Bash at the Beach '96 - Genuine Heat.
The whole fucking J-Woww segment - "This is Stupid" heat.

Just because a story is predictable doesn't mean it won't work, just because having someone turn because "They'll never see it coming" doesn't make it a good idea. The minute the fans can suspend their disbelief is the minute you'll start making money and the minute you stop talking down to your audience is the moment they stop walking away.

Clarence "Showstealer" Mason

185 Bloody Halloween: October 29, 2010

81 minutes

Blade is 'sober' again on this special Halloween, which once again involves Roddy Piper PSAs. Something involving the theme song to Over The Top.

:20 The Trip is going in circles/time loops. Quisp cereal. Swearing at restaurants. Arby's Chocolate Turnover is something BM Punk would like.

RD breaks the cycle and knocks on the door so Popeye can visit, playing his theme music on speakerphone. (:26) He brings his 'nephews' Huey, Dewie and Louie, Pimpeye, Peepeye and Poopeye who sound like Jake Lloyd Jr, for trick or treating. Blade doesn't give them anything as they didn't follow Roddy's rules. "If you're old enough to knock up a woman, you're too old to be knocking on doors on Halloween," says he. "And make sure whenever you knock up that woman, you say please and thank ya!" adds RD.

:32 RD wants you to Sit Down For WrestleCrap. The Great Khali is appearing in the Indian variant of Big Brother because 'his wife wanted him to'. The show is named Big Boss for some reason, but unfortunately I don't believe David Hayter would be involved in any capacity with it. Meanwhile the Boogeyman is now calling himself Slither. Blade yawns.

:38 For some reason Satan, i.e. the Devil, calls in, fully prepared with the theme to The Exorcist. Dirty Dutch Mantell is talking smack on his Facebook page. Wait, he has a Facebook page? This 'Devil' has more important things to do, like laugh evilly at his favorite team New Jersey for burning $100 million dollars on Ilya Kovulchuk, so he randomly says 'I'm leaving now' and uses the midi Star Trek TNG music to disappear. I wonder, could he be... RD once again calls the show incomprehensible.

Sad News to Blade: the original Centaur Jenna Van Oy has recently married. Our current Centaur looked great on TNA, according to Blade's nonsense rapping. She's also going to be 'auctioned' for charity like some kind of prop. For some reason Blade wants to win the auction with a roofie, if he doesn't pull a Don Mason and take it himself before hand of course.

:50 Jim Ross calls in. Angered by legends shows done by other wrestlers, and the failure of his lawn mowing BBQ business, he decides to make his own UWF Haunted House. Featuring Sting as the Invisible Man! Of course, he can only attract one customer with his $200 fee. (Was it Steve Williams?)

:60 Ultimate Kennedy (10) asks about the perfect employee smell. Blade says tuna.

SPEAKING OF employees John Kelly calls, on track to break the TNA Corresponding record. Of course there's a problem, as Blade's street has suddenly transformed into a stock car racetrack. After we learn that Katie Lee Burchill will appear on TNA as Winter, J.K. gives everyone a near scare when he gets hit by a Pontiac (driven by the Devil, one would wonder) [The Devil can't play a fiddle. What chance does he have to drive a stick shift? - Clarence]. Thankfully he manages to evade becoming his own crime scene by doing a Starsky and Hutch style dodge over the car roof.

:69 RD and Blade make fun of the foolish wrestling community for thinking that the Undertaker would brawl with Brock Lesnar while watching him at an MMA match. Huey has a laughing fit at this. Voters in Connecticut are (finally? I guess) allowed to wear WWE shirts while at the booths. I don't really get it either.

Laying down Seventeen Syllables to get us out of it:
Wrestling shirts at polls.
Why Vince sued Connecticut.
Linda still won't win.

Minisode #184 Gratuitous Krankor

by iggy

October 8, 2011

RJ Fletcher dies.
Michael Cole uses the gong.
Madden Doritos
George "The Animal" Steel takes a flip dive.
C.S. Irwin talks about TNA drug tests.
Nintendo John calls.

#beautiful day in the neighborhood #the children are unhappy

Random Thoughts from the Office: October 8, 2010

I'm in hell.

I am seriously in hell right now. I must be. It wasn't bad enough that I had to sit through that abomination of a main event at the Hell in a Cell pay per view, one that so totally sucked the life and enjoyment for what was actually a pretty decent show for me up till that point. Now the Antichrist of WrestleCrap Radio shows back up? Boy am I just one happy lawyer? But hey. Ain't nothing gonna break-a my stride, not even Nintendo John.

I've been thinking a lot since Sunday's pay per view about the current state of wrestling and how I personally feel about it. I mean, I hate being so negative all the time here in my column and on the WrestleCrap forums. I still love professional wrestling as a means of entertainment, but more and more recently I find myself a lot more negative than positive about the current states of both the WWE and TNA. Although there are still moments that excite me in wrestling: Ring of Honor, the Dragon Gate USA shows, SHIMMER. There is still a lot to like about wrestling.

However, when it comes to wrestling choice on a weekly basis when I live I have basically the WWE and TNA, and their product recently has left me cold and wondering I even bother with wrestling any more.

First, before I go deeper let me say that TNA actually has improved a lot. Their storylines and shows most of the time are still stupid and filled with holes a five year old autistic child could see through, but at least they're trying to get better, not always succeeding but TRYING, and to some extent it's working. I no longer want to take a trip to the Impact Zone just to burn it down anymore, which is more than I could say after Genesis.

The WWE has had its moments too: Taker-Shawn II, the well booked surprise return of Daniel(son) Bryan, The Miz has usually been entertaining and this current season of NXT is most certainly the Wrestling Gods gift to comedy.

But I wonder now if perhaps we as wrestling fans have been spoiled. A lot of us began watching wrestling during one of the greatest eras ever: The nWo running rampant in WCW; while it did get frustrating when it got repeated over and over ad nauseum but when it began on the night Hulk Hogan turned heel, it was the biggest thing in wrestling ever, an epic moment we thought would never be repeated. Only the WWE answered back with the Attitude Era: stars like Triple H, The Rock, Kurt Angle and Stone Cold Steve Austin became household names. And wrestling was epic, The Monday Night Wars created the best television wrestling had ever seen as Vince McMahon and Eric Bischoff tried to outdo each other. And if you ever needed a break there was always ECW, Paul Heyman's little promotion that could, with its compelling storylines and hardcore attitude they survived and in some cases even thrived by being different.

Even when WCW and ECW folded there was still great times ahead. The WWE had enough talent to make compelling matches for years. Even if they horrifically botched the InVasion angle, fans could look forward to guys like RVD, Jericho, Guerrero, Benoit and others to put on great matches to add to the top tier talent the WWE already had. Then they bettered it with Tag team wars featuring The Hardys, The Dudleys and Edge and Christian. Plus you had smaller independents like Ring of Honor springing up to provide great wrestling.

A year or so later TNA opened, and though their business model didn't look great, we still made sure to enjoy it while it lasted with them introducing us to new stars we hadn't really seen before like AJ Styles. It was a great time to be a wrestling fan.

Nowadays though it just seems all the fun is gone. the WWE seems perpetually stuck in 1995 when horrible gimmicks like Doink the Clown, TL Hopper and The Goon were all around and the focus was on the young children. TNA on other hand likes to party it's 1999......way past the point that any star from then is actually relevant.

The bigger problem though, believe it or not, lies with WWE, not TNA. Their push towards wrestling for a younger audience didn't work in '95 and it's not working now. The problem is the business has changed, and changed for the worse; a lot of parents still believe wrestling is just as violent as it was back then.

Go to any parent nowadays and ask them to associate names with wrestling, Number one, even now, is going to be Hulk Hogan, that's a given. As much as I dislike him, the man DID revolutionize the way people looked at wrestling. But I'm sure in the top five somewhere will lie the name Chris Benoit, and we all know why. Fair? No but you can understand why parents aren't bringing their kids to shows as often. Not that some parents don't but my point is they're not coming in the numbers the WWE needs to offset the people of our generation, the Attitude Generation who are leaving.

Look at Summerslam's buyrate, approximately 196 thousand buys domestically, 350 or so world wide. For the number three pay per view in the WWE calender, it would've been a lock to do at least DOUBLE that, or at least close to it. And most of the people leaving are the people who swore allegiance to the WWE way back when, the hardest of the hardcore fans. And as TNA as shown with the stars of WCW, once you lose them, there's a very good chance they're not coming back. Not a problem for WWE in 1995 when it was just Vince's money. Big Problem in 2010 howeber when you have to answer to shareholders wondering why one of your main revenue streams are going down, down, down. The "hook them young and keep them forever" mentality just doesn't work anymore, Meanwhile your main audience you've had since you won the Monday Night War, the 18-35 male demographic, is turning to other alternatives like the UFC because the product doesn't appeal to them anymore.

I don't mean to sound all doom and gloom; the WWE isn't going anywhere for a while yet. I'm just saying that the day may come, hopefully well off into the future where it may hurt them. So much so that even the great Vince McMahon can't recover

Time is forever after all. The patience of fans, who still so love and reminisce about the "Good old days" however, is not.

Clarence "Showstealer" Mason

184 In the John: October 8, 2010

58 minutes

RD had acid reflux the previous month and worried for his voice, including amnesiac medicine for some reason, which made things difficult for working on the radio progrem. (Mrs. Deal is Jake Lloyd Jr. according to him.) The good news thankfully is he's fine for now. Thus, Blade wants to get things done quickly for him, for a change. Sad News: RJ Fletcher is no longer with us. Even worse, RD isn't doing well in the Fantasy Football League, going winless currently. [I feel his pain. I have learned two things this year. 1. Jahvid Best is a beast. 2. Whoever owns Jahvid Best in my FFL (Me) is an idiot - Clarence] Even I have beaten him! We have probable replacements for the Co-Hosts, including two kids???

:23 Blade tries Madden NFL 11 Doritos. He likes them. Sad News: Boo Berry looks different, thanks to "Computer Generated Down Syndrome".

:33 Sad News: George Steele injured himself on a 'flip dive'. Not Sad News: Paul Bearer is a grandfather.

:40 Statement Of The Week. Brian J (2) likes college football and invites people to a game. Sadly he forgot to send an actual Question.

:44 RD loses his place in the itinerary so John Kelly comes in. He attempts to leave early too. TNA is doing drug testing just for kicks.

:48 John Cena joining the Nexus angers children online. Blade hates them. Is he secretly W.C. Fields? [I'm really beginning to think you are one of Mike Check's illegitimate sons - Clarence] RD: "We really need something to interrupt us here." So Nintendo John calls. His audience stays behind to cheer.

Sum everything up in Seventeen Syllables:
Cena in Nexus.
Wow. Golly. Jeepers. Oh boy.
Raw still sucks a dick.