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WWE Confidential Recap (1.24.04)
Posted by Peter Kostka on Jan 25, 2004, 10:22
- READER MAIL TIME!!!! Let’s dig in and see what we come up with:
This is a wrestling website and a recap of a wrestling show DONT TALK ABOUT FOOTBALL ---NOBODY CARES. IF THEY CARED ABOUT FOOTBALL THEN THEY WOULD FOLLOW IT ON A FOOTBALL WEBSITE AND EVEN THE BIGGEST FOOTBALL FANS WOULDN'T WANT TO READ IT ON A WRESTLING WEBSITE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
With that, let’s talk about last weekend’s Conference Championship games. Hey, don’t like it? Scroll down; I’ll be brief, anyway.
AFC: I actually was kind of shocked that Peyton Manning was so ineffective in that game; I thought he would be riding high with confidence, but the Pats’ opening drive TD and his first few INTs probably put an end to that quick. I do believe that this should have been a complete drubbing, but the Pats just couldn’t put it in for 6 when they had the chance (1 for 7 in the Red Zone, I believe), settling for 5 Vinatieri field goals (what slump?) I must give kudos to the crowd at Gillette; it didn’t seem like they shut up for the entire game. They were keyed up after the anthem, and stayed that way.
NFC: I’ll just say one thing; the Eagles should be ashamed of themselves for the performance they put on. Their receivers couldn’t catch, McNabb was running around being chased for half the game, their defense played decently, but the play where they allowed that Panther receiver to get that floater in the end zone was inexcusable. I give the Panthers credit for how they played, but the Eagles sure helped out by their ineptitude.
As for the Super Bowl, I’ll wait until I know which team’s Gatorade is colder on the sidelines before making a pick. The two weeks between the title games and the Bowl are death on the fans, but it does give the teams (and coaches) more time to prepare and get to Houston, so I guess it isn’t TOO bad.
- I also picked up the Flair DVD on Monday. Late to the party, I know, but I think I may have found another Easter Egg that I haven’t seen in any review or anything: pop in the third disc and go to the Chapters menu. From there, go down to the Greenville menu and in that menu, go down to “The Final Nitro” under the Bonus Features. From there, press LEFT on your remote and you’ll get a little segment where Flair talks about where his trademark “Whoooooo!” came from and a score of WWE superstars and crew offer their own versions of the “Whooooo!” It’s pretty funny, actually.
Ok, football haters, you can start reading again.
This week: WWE International, a history of the Rumble, Ric Flair goes Outside the Ropes, and more.
Mean WHOO Gene is your host, as always, and he talks a bit about the Rumble before introducing us to Tom Carlucci, head producer of international television. He sat down with Confidential to talk about how WWE is presented in over 100 countries.
Cover Story: How to Say “Slobberknocker” in 13 Other Languages
WWE is presented in 114 countries and in 14 languages. How programming is presented is up to the country: most, since English is the predominant language, simply air the programs like we in the US would see them. Others, such as Finland, take the English programming and add subtitles. Still others record their own commentary to dub over the English, like Italian (but a Spinaroonie is a Spinaroonie in any language), German (whose commentator got a WEE bit excited when the Rock made a surprise appearance in LA a month ago), and French (whose announce team is one of the Rougeau brothers and someone else, I think). But probably the most well-known foreign announcers are Carlos and Hugo, who record RAW and Smackdown commentary at WWE’s studios, and are at ringside for the PPVs, usually having their table destroyed, but sometimes even they get into the action (Hugo getting beaned by Hogan at XIX). A lot of Asian countries opt to use their own hosts in their shows. Singapore uses one guy, and South Korea uses two 20’s age male hosts on a set provided by WWE themselves, but the coolest is probably Japan, who has their Smackdown broadcasts from a nightclub hosted by two male and one female hosts. When they go overseas, the stars are blown away by how well known they are. WWE did 7 international tours in 2002, but expanded it to 35 in 2003. A lot of the workers thought Korea was the loudest of the bunch. “Kurt Angle is as well known in Korea as he is in the US.” WWE programming attracts a lot of viewers in other countries; WWE RAW, which airs on Friday nights on SKY in England, has been that channel’s highest rated show for a few years now. Fuji TV in Japan brings WWE programming to an audience of over 22 million people, and Yukes (who you may know from the WWE videogames) handles the merchandising in that country. Tom: “No matter what hour it is, someone in the world is watching WWE.”
Really interesting segment. It’s pretty cool to hear commentary from other countries, but some of those guys outshine even JR in getting overexcited about things. 1/1
- Commercials – I swear, they show that Final Fantasy X-2 ad in EVERY BREAK.
WWE Rewind: Goldberg earns #30 in the Rumble on RAW.
The Anatomy of a Finisher: The Crippler Crossface
While wrestling in Japan, Benoit wanted a new submission hold, since Japanese wrestling puts an emphasis on submission wrestling. He got the idea for the hold from Dean Malenko, the “Man of 1000 Holds”, but got the “Crippler” nickname when he broke Sabu’s neck during an ECW match. The best thing about the move, Benoit says, is that “It can be taken from all sides. I can grab the right arm, the left arm, the guy could be picking me up, or I could be behind the guy, which makes the move very threatening.” Applying the Crossface, step 1: grabbing the guy’s arm and immobilizing him on the mat by pinning it with your legs. Step 2: Wrap your arms around his head and lock your hands on his face. Step 3: Pull back on head. The move puts pressure on the vertebrae and doesn’t give the guy much chance to escape. Benoit is a technical wrestler, so if the guy doesn’t know about it, he can really take advantage of that. Wrestlers with an amateur background (Lesnar and Angle, among others) are a different story, since they know a lot of counters. But in the end, “I’ve never met a man that didn’t tap.”
At least this finisher has something to explain, unlike the F-5. “Uh, I put the guy on my shoulders and spin him to the mat…..that’s it.” 2/2
- Commercials – And, yep, the X-2 ad again. I don’t think the pop music will draw the male audience, skimpy costumes or no.
From the Vault: Dawn Marie
Dawn’s choice is, naturally, one of the best matches ever. It is from Wrestlemania XI.
Bam Bam Bigelow vs. Lawrence Taylor
This is another attempt by Vince to get mainstream exposure for his company. At the Royal Rumble earlier in the year, Bam Bam lost a tag team title match and Taylor, who was at ringside, laughed at him. Bam Bam answered by shoving him five rows back. The press just ate this up, and a match ended up being signed with Diesel becoming Taylor’s trainer.
There are literally about 30 people around ringside, counting the photographers, Taylor’s posse of ex-NFL players, and Ted Dibiase’s Corporation (which Bam Bam was a member of). Bam Bam shoves Taylor again, but he slaps the taste out of his mouth and delivers some forearms before clotheslining him over the top (almost landing on three people). CLIP to Bam Bam going upstairs and hitting a corkscrew moonsault (he’s 350 pounds, don’t forget), but he seems to hurt his knee legit and rolls around on the mat a bit before covering for 2. Bam Bam whips, but puts his head down and Taylor sets up for a Jackknife, but he can’t get Bam Bam all the way up, so he turns it into a gut-wrench suplex instead of dropping him on his head, showing good sense actually. That only gets 2, and Bam Bam answers with an enziguri and some headbutts. He tries to go up, but Taylor’s posse stops him, which was either part of the match, or Taylor didn’t clue them in on some things. The ref (Pat Patterson), tells them to back off and Bam Bam goes up, hitting a flying headbutt, but that only gets 2. Taylor comes back with some forearms, goes into the 3-point stance, and hits another big forearm. He hops onto the second rope and delivers a flying forearm that seems to hit Bam Bam flush in the jaw for the pin.
Should I make the obvious “LT sent a hooker to Bam Bam’s hotel room” joke here? This is pretty much the Flair-Steamboat of celebrity matches; LT really tried to not screw up too much, but Bam Bam’s career really wasn’t the same after. They tried a face turn, but that didn’t pan out. 3/3
Halfway through, and a perfect show so far. Will it hold up?
- Commercials – “I know…something….that something has surrounded me, I won’t give into it now…something.”
Wrestlemania Recall: Ric Flair makes his way to the ring at VIII while Heenan goes into full lapdog mode.
From the Vault: Ric Flair
Thankfully it’s a RAW guy, so Coach is back.
1. What are some things that make Ric Flair go “Whooooooo?”
A great match, a beautiful woman, a good movie, ANOTHER beautiful woman, TWO great matches, style, private jets, the list goes on and on. Whoooooo!
2. You are known as the Dritiest Player in the Game, but what was your dirtiest trick in the locker room?
I’m not really much of a trickster, but I’ve seen a lot of good pranks. A locker room is too small, too confined. When I want to do something, I do it where everyone can see.
3. Where do you get those exquisite robes?
Actually Olivia Walker, the wife of Mr. Wrestling II, she made me 22 robes, with rhinestones and everything. She passed away about two years ago, but she was one of the best seamstresses I’ve ever seen. She also made outfits for people like Dolly Parton.
4. Why do some people refer to your home state of North Carolina as North Cackalacki?
I don’t know. I’ve heard people refer to it that way, but I don’t know what it means. Maybe now that the Panthers are in the Super Bowl, people will drop that. (Don’t bet on it Ric.)
(Speaking of betting) 5. What is the most you have ever won or lost in a casino?
This may surprise you. $12,000. I won and lost $12,000 on three hands of blackjack.
6. Is it true that what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas?
Hopefully. There are a bunch of stories that no one will know until the day I die. Until then, I hope they are in a vault under lock and key.
7. Which is your favorite: Limo ridin’, jet flyin’, wheelin’-dealin’, or kiss stealin’?
Kiss stealin’, no doubt. If I can get a woman to give me a little one, it’s good. It’s just as easy at 54 then it was at 24. At 24, it was like *snaps fingers* Whooo! At 44, it was like *snaps twice* Whooo, whooo. At 54, oh, Coach. (I’m surprised he didn’t start strutting around the set.)
8. I know you love to travel, so what are your top 3 “Gentlemen’s Clubs”?
I don’t really go much to strip clubs. It’s no fun paying a woman to dance but not being able to touch her. I’d rather have women pay to see ME take off my clothes and touch me.
9. The three disc Ric Flair DVD is the hottest selling DVD in WWE history, but do you have any personal videos that would outsell even that?
No, I’ve never been a video guy, but I probably can find about 3000 women that could verbalize so you could get a picture in your head.
10. If Hollywood made a movie about your life, what actor would you choose to play Ric Flair?
Sean Connery. I see a lot of myself in him. From James Bond to what he is now, he’s kept with the times and hasn’t lost a step. Sean Connery and Ric Flair, side by side, whooooo!
Ok, well, thank you very much sir for doing this. Until next time, I’m the Coach, that’s Ric Flair, and we’ll see you later.
Can you like this guy any more? One of the best OTRs ever. 4/4
- Commercials – “Let’s go girls.”
The Royal Rumble: A History in One Segment
In 1988, the WWF already had a big event in the spring (Wrestlemania), the summer (Summerslam), and fall (Survivor Series), so they wanted something new to kick off the New Year, something different. Pat Patterson, drawing on his experience in battle royals, wondered what if they had a battle royal, but instead 2 guys started in the ring, and another, you didn’t know who, would come in every two minutes. He pitched the idea to Vince, who said “Boy, that’ll be a project” and tossed it on the maybe pile. They had a two hour special on USA that year, so Vince told Pat to pitch his idea to USA head Dick Ebersol, who loved it. They did an abbreviated version of the match, which Hacksaw Jim Duggan won. It was so successful that they decided to do it every year. Interspliced with Pat talking are classic Rumble moments (Maven eliminating Taker in ’02, Rock winning in 2000, McMahon winning in 1999, which was probably the worst Rumble ever, actually. We see Flair’s classic performance in 1992 and Pat reveals that Ric was crying in the dressing room afterwards. The best way to win: “Have a high number; being #1 is not good. Shawn Michaels coming in first and winning in 1995 was quite a feat.” Yeah, because the intervals were just a minute that year, BRILLIANT idea Vince. More classic Rumble moments: HHH rips off Shawn’s “one foot on the floor” thing and eliminates Angle to win in 2002. “The best way to make an impression is to with the Rumble” says Pat.
Man, they could have done a LOT more with this segment. Wrestler interviews (especially Flair about ’92), more footage. The perfect score is no more. 4.5/5
- Commercials –
One More Segment About WWE Originals and That’s It, We Promise
This time we peek in on Lillian Garcia’s recording session. Her song is called You Just Don’t Know Me. It’s pure rock; she wanted a lot of guitar and a big sound behind it. Everyone sees her as nice and smiling, which she tries to be, but this song tells you “If you get in my way or put an obstacle in my path, I will get by it.” She, of course, can’t wait to hear the album.
Well, her voice is pretty good, but that song sounds SO cliché. 5/6
Gene runs down the Rumble card, and we’re out for another week.
Next week: Nothing announced.
Until next week, Send me feedback and GO PATS!!!!!