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The Idiot King

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  1. If AEW cornering the US market on the more technical aspects of wrestling encourages WWE to lean fully into its basest nature of giant jacked guys (and gals!) tossing each other around, I’m for it — that was fun and it’s distinguishing from the competition, for sure.
  2. Is there a general consensus on the worst WWE-name of all time? That is to say, either a renaming of an indy talent or a wholly original name for a debuting talent in the house style of First Name-Last Name (but with a bunch of unnecessary letters)? So for example, Mantaur is disqualified from this not only because it's a very cool name and gimmick. After a while, you get used to them, but Dolph Ziggler and Braun Strowman were pretty roundly hated for a long time. Jaxson Ryker and now Bron Breakker have gotta be top contenders, too. Brooks Jensen is bad but only in a boring way. The women seem to have gotten off a lot easier, overall -- the only really awful name that leaps to mind (and is ancient at this point) is Kelly Kelly.
  3. Pulling this entirely out of my ass, but is it possible they decided to pull the Becky audible in some form 8 days ago in response to Punk returning, Sasha didn’t like the booking of it in whatever way and ultimately ended up walking or is it confirmed that it is in some way medical? In any case, it was a real slapdash fuck you to everyone involved — nobody came out looking better for it and dragged down an already just okay show. Seth/Edge was fun, as was the women’s triple threat. The main event was fine. It just doesn’t feel like there’s much of anything to get excited about these days. Everything feels like it’s been locked in a holding pattern for years.
  4. It’s an imperfect metaphor, but sometimes I feel like Seth Rollins is the Kevin Durant of wrestling. He started out as part of a beloved trio, before heading out on his own to become clearly, inarguably, for better or worse, one of THE guys of his generation, but all the while remaining almost bizarrely thin-skinned and constantly fostering an antagonistic relationship with people who are presumably his fan base. He constantly seems to have a self-serious chip on his shoulder that he isn’t more beloved even though he’s always kind of acting like a prick. I like him just fine, but can’t blame anyone who thinks he’s pathologically incapable of connecting with people.
  5. This is a third-hand, probably bullshit, not-quite-sleaze-thread level story I heard once about Mikey's WCW tenure: Apparently, the night before his debut, he was out partying with various revelers and friends in a hotel room, someone had a blow-up doll and had inserted an empty beer bottle into its private parts. At some point in the night, someone else jumped off the hotel bed to drop an elbow onto the doll and the bottle fired out and hit Mikey in the head, concussing him, which is why he was so lousy during his run. I am not even sure if the timeline (never mind the physics!) in that story make any sense, but I feel like it has been long enough and is innocent enough in spirit to be shared here, because I have no idea when else his WCW run is gonna come up in discussion otherwise.
  6. If photos are allowed, how would one even go about enforcing a no recording on your phone policy at a gigantic arena like that? Seems like more hassle top to bottom than it's worth, even if it's about controlling the narrative. I'm betting some of the speculation on this is a little overblown, but can you imagine if going forward, everyone had to stow their phones into those little security pouches that they use for live comedy shows sometimes? Just let everyone know that you're making sure Jaakxzon Rykkar's new work doesn't leak out of context while he's still polishing it up.
  7. What an odd assortment! Who is that down front in red? Was this an actual event that took place? I'd think this would have to be 98/early 99 if that's Fatu working the Sultan gimmick outside of the WWE.
  8. In re: Sasha, I think like-policing your favorite wrestlers is some real weirdo fan shit to do, even when it comes to this. I feel like, you know, mind your own business! If someone starts posting about it or can't stop themselves from talking about it in interviews, that's different and fair game. And I think someone else said it above, too, but I would also reiterate that while I don't think wrestlers are stupid or inherently conservative, I do think wrestling (like MMA) draws in a certain type of person. Knuckleheads, maybe, is the term I'm looking for? Not stupid, but kind of stubborn and strange and with an idiosyncratic view of themselves and the world. You have to be a little nuts just to do it, is what I mean, and even though workers today seem a lot better adjusted than back in the 80s or even the 90s, I think it's an industry where you are gonna find a higher than average incidence of cranks.
  9. Not trying to leap to the defense of Dave Meltzer here, but yeah, I think he was pretty clearly saying that there's a lot of pressure in pro wrestling for women to look a certain way and that seems like about as uncontroversial an opinion as could possibly exist. And I'm sorry, I don't know what the line is when it comes to Charlotte or any other public figure who has, uh, increasing amounts of noticeable plastic surgery. I'm not saying it's fair game for everyone to pile on and be an asshole or anything (if nothing else, it's pretty hacky Jay Leno monologuing about Cher kind of stuff), and it's anyone's god given right to do whatever they want to their bodies, but are we, as an audience, just supposed to...politely ignore it? Pretend that's not what's going on? Cena's hair implants were also very jarring and weird initially! A very famous wrestler has more or less debuted a new face, I feel like that's at least -- notable?
  10. I agree with the general consensus on most things: * Two nights is better than one night, both for viewing at home and I can only imagine for viewing in-person, too: People don't get as worn out, the pacing makes more sense, it allows for two legitimate main events, and it makes each match feel more important. * Night 1 was better than Night 2, but I don't think either was anything less than "Good." Easily the best Wrestlemania since 31. * Lowlights were Braun helping Shane do a front flip for all the dum-dums in the audience, Hulk Hogan both being and making everyone else uncomfortable (the wink-wink "You can't be calling people scurvy dogs and scalawags on live TV" line), any-and-all Fiend business, a botchy, rushed Tag Team Turmoil and whatever is going on with Apollo Crews and his accent. * Highlights were Sasha-Bianca being the best match of either night (and after rewatching it a second time, a MOTYC, honestly), Cesaro and Rollins putting on a clinic, great Roman Reigns booking, Bad Bunny being an excellent celebrity wrestler with a great entrance, Lashley/McIntyre and Sheamus/Riddle both working to everyone's strengths, and Sami and KO trying to kill each other just because why not. It was great to see Rhea get the win she should have had last year, but I think the heel/face dynamic was confusing, which led to it feeling a little deflated. * Hot take is that I really liked the women's tag title match. The crowd was weirdly into it, they were laying things in super hard (maybe not on purpose!), it occasionally got a little messy but not in a way that felt distracting, each wrestler played a distinct role and had their own fighting style, and I liked the overall Nattie-In-Peril story of the match. Maybe it's the beneficiary of a low bar, but I liked it a lot more than the Big E match, for instance. Excited to entirely stop paying attention again until Summerslam!
  11. The Stump-Puller The Implant Buster (I know, I know) The Steiner-line (like the Steiner Recliner, it just sounds good to the ears) The Million Dollar Dream The Tongan Death Grip I always loved when Ember Moon's finisher was called The O Face, though the Eclipse is pretty good too. A lot of the classic moves just sound like a million bucks: Piledriver, Atomic Drop, Brainbuster, Power Bomb, Heart Punch, Tope Suicida, Gorilla Press Slam Re: Koko B. Ware's Ghostbuster -- I always assumed it was from when he was working as a heel in the southern territories, that it was kind of a racially tinged thing (this move busts ghosts, i.e. white dudes) but I'd imagine it's just as likely that Ghostbusters was popular and it sounded cool.
  12. That's a lot of gross fun. Joey at one point notes that "this is the best Sabu's ever looked," which feels true. I wonder if this was in his run-up to being signed to WWECW, where he was also looked healthy and was doing great stuff. He's in good shape, hits his spots clean (relatively), and he and LA Park move at the right speed with each other. Very stabby and passionate. There's a really nice moment in this where LA Park has been taking an especially vicious ass-kicking, and the front row get a chant going for him. It made me rewatch the Joe - Necro Butcher match and -- I heard a little bit about the backstory, and I see there's shoot stuff around with Necro Butcher talking about it, but has Joe ever said anything?
  13. Yeah, and too much money to be lost if there's a bigger outbreak or if they get shut back down. He's evil, not stupid. He's the guy at the top who makes big bucks peddling slop to the rubes, not a True Believer. Though it would be funny to hear him give a David Icke style rant about lizard people.
  14. Maybe this is too internet smark circa 1999, but to this day (in ring) I really can't stand Goldberg. Couldn't wrestle longer than three minutes, couldn't even do the moves he had without fucking them up and hurting people, couldn't talk, had no juice without the streak (WILL JERRY FLYNN BE THE ONE TO BREAK IT THIS WEEK?), and then had (has? is still contractually obligated to continue?) a listless, heatless farewell tour. He's got a great entrance and was breath of fresh air in the dying days of WCW in retrospect, but truly the best thing you could say about him is that his matches were short and even then, they somehow still felt brutally slow. Would easily be my pick for lowest ceiling of anyone with that much of a push behind them -- at least Warrior had tassels.
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