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On 9/13/2020 at 11:22 PM, Tabe said:

What's weird about that is his baseball books are totally not that. They are absolutely top class books. 

Which ones do you recommend? I didn't realize he wrote baseball books and the time period he focuses on is my main area of interest. 

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14 minutes ago, Hagan said:

Which ones do you recommend? I didn't realize he wrote baseball books and the time period he focuses on is my main area of interest. 

War on the Basepaths (Ty Cobb) and Fall from Grace (Joe Jackson) for sure.  They are the best bios of both subjects.

Edited by Tabe
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  • 4 weeks later...

Finally someone has juxtaposed the early history of the world wrestling championship with Little House on the Prairie, and you can read about it in WCBA #9! There's also some Star Wars, some Transformers, the greatest wrestling movie never seen, and the story of W*ING hits monster town! All this AND part 1 of a look at the career of "The Prince of Darkness" Kevin Sullivan!

44 pages, black & white, 10pt Trebuchet MS

You can get a copy posted to your house by sending £3.50 (£4.50 for anywhere outside the UK) through PayPal to [email protected] Please tick the "sending to a friend or family" box and put your address in the notes so I know where to send it to! Alternatively, you can use the webstore at wrestlingcanbeanything.bigcartel.com, but it costs an extra 50p! I also do PDF copies for £1 each!

 

wcba9.png.c787828f00db3be151578bb946c0ef

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About halfway thru the Young Bucks book. So far it's pretty wholesome and heartfelt in a way that a lot of wrestler bios are not. These guys are definitely not cynics and one of the takeaways is how much their early years in SoCal and the people they worked with in those early years led to what's happening today. 

Anyway, enjoying it. 

Edited by Hagan
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1 hour ago, Hagan said:

About halfway thru the Young Bucks book. So far it's pretty wholesome and heartfelt in a way that a lot of wrestler bios are not. 

Does that mean they are keeping their politics out of it? 

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They are pretty open about how their faith is important to them and their family but nothing like "non-believers shall burn in Hell" so ymmv on whether anyone mentioning Christianity is annoying. 

Nothing political obviously.

You really get a sense of the camaraderie that was built up in the independent scene and how everyone rooted for and supported each other. Now, I'm sure this is a little Pollyanna-ish but so many bios of 80s and 90s stars boil down "had to carry a gun lest the boys and promoter screwed me" and "90 percent of my friends died of overdoses" so it's nice to see a positive portrayal of the business. 

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It's (almost) Christmas! And what better way to celebrate than with a look at some of the horrible ways that wrestling and Santa have combined, along with more on W*ING and Kevin Sullivan, AND a look at the brief lucha career of Los Thundercats! Bumper 52-page issue!

52 pages, black & white, 10pt Trebuchet MS

You can get a copy posted to your house by sending £3.50 (£4.50 for anywhere outside the UK) through PayPal to [email protected] Please tick the "sending to a friend or family" box and put your address in the notes so I know where to send it to! Alternatively, you can use the webstore at wrestlingcanbeanything.bigcartel.com, but it costs an extra 50p! I also do PDF copies for £1 each!

720645178_WCBA10.png.c9f2ad5184bdb0ed7c2

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  • 4 weeks later...

One of my Christmas 2020 presents was The Wrestling Observer Yearbook '97 by Dave Meltzer. I'm enjoying reading through what is my favourite year in wrestling history:

WWF:

Bret Hart vs. Steve Austin at WrestleMania 13. A ***** match with an iconic finish as Steve Austin passed out in the Sharpshooter while bleeding cementing a double turn.

Hart Foundation reform. We get them vs. Steve Austin and USA vs. Canada.

The Undertaker has the best match of his career as does Shawn Michaels in the first ever Hell in a Cell match held on In Your House 18: Badd Blood. A ***** match.

WCW:

Sting vs. n.W.o. Sting vs. Hollywood Hogan, well the build to it.

Rey Mysterio vs. Eddie Guerrero at Halloween Havoc. The work on Mysterio's back to go along with holy shi t spots to this day. The moonsault DDT and somersault to the outside into a headscissors. This was also *****.

ECW:

ECW arrives on PPV with Barely Legal with Taz vs. Sabu and Terry Funk, a bloody mess wins the ECW World Championship. FYI The BBFC here in the UK cut about 10 seconds of Funk's blood loss on the VHS and DVD release.

One of the most gory and hard to watch matches I've ever seen, Funk vs. Sabu at Born to be Wired. Sabu years his bicep open taping it up with wrist tape and the ending with both so entwined in barbed wire.

---

The low points from the year: WCW Souled Out, Brian Pillman's passing, the Montreal Screwjob, a God awful Sabu vs. Sandman match at ECW November 2 Remember and WCW fucking up Sting vs. Hollywood Hogan at Starrcade 1997.

Edited by The Natural
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The five best wrestling books I've read and recommend to you:

1. Yes: My Improbable Journey to the Main Event of WrestleMania by Daniel Bryan.

2. Have a Nice Day! A Tale of Blood and Sweatsocks by Mick Foley.

3. Hitman: My Real Life in the Cartoon World of Wrestling by Bret Hart.

4. A Lion's Tale: Around the World in Spandex by Chris Jericho.

5. Walking a Golden Mile by William Regal.

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Issue 11 of the ongoing scientific study to prove that Wrestling Can Be Anything dips into the NOW! with a look at the Marvel Comics/AAA lucha crossover, and then travels back in time for a story that involves Nazis, fake Nazis, champion boxers, skyscraper-heisters, and ghoststoppers, as well as finishing up the histories of W*ING & Kevin Sullivan!

44 pages, black & white, 10pt Trebuchet MS

You can get a copy posted to your house by sending £3.50 (£4.50 for anywhere outside the UK) through PayPal to [email protected] Please tick the "sending to a friend or family" box and put your address in the notes so I know where to send it to! Alternatively, you can use the webstore at wrestlingcanbeanything.bigcartel.com, but it costs an extra 50p! I also do PDF copies for £1 each!

1711304317_WCBA11.png.fa8b626d007c2156ab

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I received my books from Crowbar Press a couple days ago, and I am so very elated. One is a collected series of interviews with Frankie Cain, and covers his life & career from 1932 thru 1960 - the second volume will be out this year with 1961 to the present. I have read some of the material in Scott Teal's "Whatever Happened To...?" (ST edited the book, of course) and Cain is a mastermind with a career that spanned the history of the business and a keen mind for all aspects of it. The other book is Tim Hornbaker's biography of Nature Boy Buddy Rogers. I started it and Sweet Mary it is good. A nice mix of painstaking details and fact-checking and a readable narrative of the life of a larger than life superstar whose influence is still around today. I dig this kinda stuff the mostest. I have mostly been very pleased with the products and service of Crowbar Press, but these go above and beyond.

gush gush gush,

RAF (not a spokesperson, but a satisfied customer)

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  • 3 weeks later...

Just finished two books recently. 

The Young Bucks: Killing the Business

I preordered a signed, first edition, but after reading, I wish I would have waited for a paperback release. I've never had a more "average" experience reading a wrestling biography. My wife asked if it was a good, I paused, thought, and replied, "Yes? I guess so?"

There are a few good stories, including the time at PWG where Danielson and Strong worked pretty stiff (for much longer than planned) in a failed attempt to make the Bucks sympathetic baby faces, being super lonely their first few trips in Japan, and the entire dynamic between the Bucks and Omega choosing between AEW and WWE. But if you're not a big fan, you might end up feeling like this is really just a rundown of their lives and careers. Which is fine, I love hearing it straight from the author, there's just nota lot of creativity or storytelling. Maybe I'm just spoiled by some of the great books by Foley, Jericho, Regal, etc., (they didn't use any type of ghostwriter for this).

I admire their story, and what they've done to change the entire industry, and appreciate they dedicated so much time to this project. Like @Hagan said in a previous post, they're two genuine guys, so it's probably worth a quick read when it reaches a lower price point. Just doesn't expect an elite-level memoir here. 

 

Wrestling with Pixels

Every wrestling video game, ever. They cover it. The kickstarter for this opened almost a decade ago (2013!) and it was finally released last year, after the book was handed over to Hardcore Gaming 101 a few years ago. A fan of video games, and wrestling, this strikes two boxes. My growing interest in PURO MERCH! checked another box, as this has a short summary of every Japanese release ever (look at that, FMW had a game, and holy sh*t did Japan get a lot of releases throughout the years). It's also nice to reminisce about the US releases, and learn why I never knew about WWF In Your House for PS1 until 10 years after its release.

Summaries range from a third of a page to two or three pages (saved for a dozen or so titles). Brevity is nice, I don't need to read the full history on Super Wrestle Angels, but I'd like to know it exists. 

It's decent in a "checklist" sort of way: seeing the art, knowing what it is, and maybe a quick opinion. If you're expecting it to be in-depth on each game, you're not going to like this. If you want a definitive list of what's out there, this is the book to own. 

Sadly, the most common format is available at retail is paperback/black and white. I'm not sure if the digital formats are color or not. There's a paperback/color version floating around that I'll probably end up grabbing at an additional cost at some point. If this was a larger, color, coffee-table-style book, I'd be one of the first in line. 

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

I finished the two Crowbar Press books mentioned above - I tried to make them last but they were too delectable. The Buddy Rogers book was great. It was illuminating to read a positive take on his career, since there was so much negativity about him it was hard to separate the sour grapes & bitterness from his actual place in the history of the business. Like an iconic rock star (Jim Morrison? Iggy Pop? Lou Reed?) Rogers' influence is still felt today, as he is imitated and copied (second/third/fourth/... - hand) by workers who may never have seen him at all. The research was incredible, but I would have liked a little more context, maybe his contemporaries and students talking about what made his work stand out for that era.

The Frankie Cain book was doubleplusgood amazing. I could read about vets ranking workers, shooters, hookers, fighters and bookers all day long. The man is a genius and understands what makes pro wrestling work. His childhood was four or five lifetimes of adventures compared to most of us mollycoddled pink softboys, and if it was a movie no one would believe it. His love of the business and of life itself shines through - this should be mandatory reading for anyone in or into rasslin'. It's easily in my top 3 wrestling books.

- RAF

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On 1/3/2021 at 11:48 PM, thee Reverend Axl Future said:

I received my books from Crowbar Press a couple days ago, and I am so very elated. One is a collected series of interviews with Frankie Cain, and covers his life & career from 1932 thru 1960 - the second volume will be out this year with 1961 to the present. I have read some of the material in Scott Teal's "Whatever Happened To...?" (ST edited the book, of course) and Cain is a mastermind with a career that spanned the history of the business and a keen mind for all aspects of it. The other book is Tim Hornbaker's biography of Nature Boy Buddy Rogers. I started it and Sweet Mary it is good. A nice mix of painstaking details and fact-checking and a readable narrative of the life of a larger than life superstar whose influence is still around today. I dig this kinda stuff the mostest. I have mostly been very pleased with the products and service of Crowbar Press, but these go above and beyond.

gush gush gush,

RAF (not a spokesperson, but a satisfied customer)

Let me second the love for the Buddy bio! Now all we need is a comprehensive bio of the late, great Johnny Valentine and we're all set!

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SCREAM FOR ME, LONG BEACH! The VERY METAL issue of WCBA is here, with the full run down on ALL of WCW's heavy metal gimmicks, the lowdown on WARHORSE, the disaster that was the WWF's collaboration with Chaos! Comics, and the collision of wrestling and GWAR!

44 pages, black & white, 10pt Trebuchet MS

You can get a copy posted to your house by sending £3.50 (£4.50 for anywhere outside the UK) through PayPal to [email protected] Please tick the "sending to a friend or family" box and put your address in the notes so I know where to send it to! Alternatively, you can use the webstore at wrestlingcanbeanything.bigcartel.com, but it costs an extra 50p! I also do PDF copies for £1 each!

60559811_WCBA12.png.12e1b42d0a4065e3d27e

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  • 1 month later...
On 12/30/2020 at 11:06 AM, The Natural said:

One of my Christmas 2020 presents was The Wrestling Observer Yearbook '97 by Dave Meltzer. I'm enjoying reading through what is my favourite year in wrestling history:

WWF:

Bret Hart vs. Steve Austin at WrestleMania 13. A ***** match with an iconic finish as Steve Austin passed out in the Sharpshooter while bleeding cementing a double turn.

Hart Foundation reform. We get them vs. Steve Austin and USA vs. Canada.

The Undertaker has the best match of his career as does Shawn Michaels in the first ever Hell in a Cell match held on In Your House 18: Badd Blood. A ***** match.

WCW:

Sting vs. n.W.o. Sting vs. Hollywood Hogan, well the build to it.

Rey Mysterio vs. Eddie Guerrero at Halloween Havoc. The work on Mysterio's back to go along with holy shi t spots to this day. The moonsault DDT and somersault to the outside into a headscissors. This was also *****.

ECW:

ECW arrives on PPV with Barely Legal with Taz vs. Sabu and Terry Funk, a bloody mess wins the ECW World Championship. FYI The BBFC here in the UK cut about 10 seconds of Funk's blood loss on the VHS and DVD release.

One of the most gory and hard to watch matches I've ever seen, Funk vs. Sabu at Born to be Wired. Sabu years his bicep open taping it up with wrist tape and the ending with both so entwined in barbed wire.

---

The low points from the year: WCW Souled Out, Brian Pillman's passing, the Montreal Screwjob, a God awful Sabu vs. Sandman match at ECW November 2 Remember and WCW fucking up Sting vs. Hollywood Hogan at Starrcade 1997.

 

Dave Meltzer on The Wrestling Observer Yearbook '97. Hope 1998 is next then 2001.

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  • 1 month later...

So I just saw something on twitter about  a new wrestling book coming out, about the 100 Bloodiest matches ever. Written by a guy name of Phil Schneider, apparently. Not sure if that's OUR Phil Schneider, or if there's two of them, but still...

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