Repost: Eddy Guerrero Shoot Interviewby Brandon Truitt
Mar 22, 2004, 22:00
This is a repost of an article originally posted on 1-6-2003.
I'm still working on the godforsaken RF Video Shoot Interview, so I figured I'd repost Latino Heat's shoot interview in the meantime. With any luck, the RF Video shoot will be up Tuesday or Wednesday.
Ah... I'm back after a greatly needed week off and I've brought a shoot interview with one of today's top stars back with me.
Since I had all that time off, I FINALLY got around to watching much of what build up in my "to watch" pile, including the entire first season of 24. To anyone who hasn't seen it, BUY IT NOW. It's about $40 for all 24 episodes of pure cinema-quality goodness in a 6 DVD set at your local Target, Best Buy, or Walmart.
I'll also send out warning... if you're looking to pick up just one of the seven seasons of Star Trek: The Next Generation on DVD, do NOT pick up season two. Due to a writers' strike pushing back the start of the season, there are only 22 episodes as compared to 26 in the other seasons and the quality of stories is FAR worse than any season I can remember. Even the halfassed seasons towards the end had a classic episode or two to outweigh the multitude of crap.
From what I've seen, the only three quality (read: non-crap) episodes are "Elementary, Dear Data" (Sherlock Data and Dr. Geordi Watson try to save Dr. Pulaski from a holodeck-enhanced Professor Moriarity), Measure of a Man (Data's status as a sentient being is put on trial, with Picard as Data's defender and Riker forced to be Starfleet's prosecutor), and "Q Who?" (Q throws the Enterprise into the Delta Quadrant to meet a dangerous new enemy... The Borg). These episodes, while good, do NOT outweigh such crap as "Where Silence Has Lease", "Shades of Grey", and the GOD AWFUL duo of "The Child" and "The Outrageous Okona". While the main portion of Okona is okay, the portions with Data trying to learn humor from JOE FUCKING PISCAPO were pathetic. I wish he'd turned down THAT role because "Frank wouldn't do that" because it would have preserved my sanity a bit.
Sidenote- Joe Piscopo is fine when he plays Frank Sinatra, but that's it. What pisses me off is that he was notorious for turning down Saturday Night Live skits because "Frank wouldn't do that" of "Frank wouldn't approve" and he actually knocked Phil Hartman, one of my favorite actors, AFTER HIS DEATH for doing portrayals of Sinatra that he thought were disrespectful. Consider that Phil Hartman was one of the most underappreciated actors of his time and had INCREDIBLE range while Piscopo was an overrated piece of crap on SNL who let Eddie Murphy's fame go to his head and you'll see my point of view.
So in short, FUCK that no-talent hack Joe Piscopo. Go back to kissing Eddie Murphy's ass and hope that he'll let you co-star in "Pluto Nash 2: The Quest To Lose More Money". The only question will be if it will be a bigger bomb than "Nostalgia Trip 2: Electric Boogaloo", starring Shawn Michaels as the RAW Champion, which tanked RAW's TV ratings and brought the house show ticket sales to lows not seen since the last time Kevin Nash held a world title. (The PPV buyrates for Survivor Series and Armageddon aren't in yet, but I'm sure they'll be lower than normal because of it.)
Next week's shoot will probably be with "Beautiful" Bobby Eaton of the Midnight Express.
As always, you can drop me an e-mail here or buy me stuff if you like my work.
Eddy Guerrero Shoot Interview (12-4-01)
The opening match on the tape is the Eddy Guerrero vs. Dean Malenko match for the ECW TV title from the Hostile City Showdown show in 1994. This is a good match, but I’m not reviewing it here because the video quality sucks. This IS the whole match, though, and appears to be about 30 minutes long. As a sidenote, I’ll tell you that, as a rule, the video quality of the ECW matches is about the WORST of ANY matches included on these, even worse than rare, early 80s Memphis.
One thing that will hit you as soon as you hear Eddy speak is that he drops the thick Latino Heat accent.
The first question is at what age he decided to get into the business, which he can’t say because he just always wanted to. He was never pressured to enter the business but there was HUGE pressure by himself to live up to his family’s name. He says his brothers Chavo Guerrero Sr., Mondo Guerrero, and Hector Guerrero (the Gobbildygooker of Wrestlecrap infamy) all did the name proud, so he felt a lot of pressure to do the same.
Growing up watching his father wrestle- He didn’t get to see him wrestle in his prime because he was 27 years younger than his oldest brother, Chavo Sr.
Who helped train him? He was on a wrestling scholarship in New Mexico but got hurt and then the program got cancelled. He came home around that time and some of his friends wanted to get into the business, so they all started training under the guidance of Eddy’s dad, Gory Guerrero. Gory had suffered a stroke before they started training, so he was only able to describe what he wanted them to do instead of demonstrating it, but Eddy knew most of what he was talking about due to working out with his brothers before. A lot of his in-ring psychology comes from his oldest brother, Chavo Sr. They were tougher on him than the others because he was a Guerrero, but they also pulled together once he learned and started working.
He talks about how Gory got into wrestling because he was trying to get into boxing but they only did wrestling where he was.
Were other wrestlers jealous that he got such a break into the business? Oh GOD yes. He went into Mexico as a semi-main event guy without paying any dues, so guys would be stiff with him. It was a fistfight every night during his first three months wrestling in Juarez.
How hard was it going to college and wrestling? He, as a self-professed “momma’s boy” didn’t like leaving home at such a young age. He never finished college because he entered the business. He tells the young guys that if they finish college, they’ll always have something to fall back on. “It doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll go out and become a millionaire but it makes you a better person.” From his point of view, though, that people need to follow your heart because then you’ll put 100% into what you do.
His debut in 1987- He was working with EMLL. It was difficult because he rarely spoke Spanish at home and, while he could understand Spanish, he kept missing what people were saying when laying out matches because he was spending too much time translating from Spanish to English instead of thinking in Spanish. Once he started talking to his family, though, he was fine because he picked it right back up. He says that Spanish was the first language he learned anyway.
Working for EMLL was different from the indys because of the organization. He also didn’t need to worry about getting his paycheck from EMLL.
Winning the WWA 6-man tag belts working with Chavo and Mondo- It was a great experience because he learned psychology by just being in the ring with them.
One of his early gimmicks was Masca Magica. EMLL came up with the gimmick and gave it to him in order to put more personality into their workers and that was just one of their ideas.
Amongst the workers who had influence on him were Negro Caras, Atlantis, and El Dandy.
Is there a lot of politics in Mexico? “Everywhere you go there are politics, no matter what people say. Some are just more abrupt than others.”
Leaving EMLL for AAA- He didn’t see anything happening in EMLL and he was hungry, so he tried his chances elsewhere. The only thing AAA promised him more money, but it was worth it because even if they did the same thing as EMLL, at least he got more. He was scared to do it at first because he didn’t like going against his promoter, but learned loyalty is not a big trait in the business. “Look at Bret Hart. He was loyal for a long time and look what happened to him.” The bottom line for him is feeding his family.
Comparing to EMLL to AAA- EMLL was well organized, much like the WWF. Like in the WWF, EMLL had a guy on top making decisions but his orders were slightly altered on their way down the ladder and that’s where the politics come in. AAA had guys who had a lot of pull but when he was there, it was more of a team than a family.
His daily routine in Mexico- They used to be bussed around the country all the time and wrestle a lot of matches each night.
New Japan- Negro Casas was coming in and they wanted someone for their juniors tournament, and they took him after Casas recommended him. His brothers scared the shit out of him before he went talking about how in-shape he had to be, so he started running 3 miles a day in the desert and so forth. His first memory in Japan is meeting Chris Benoit and Fit Finlay. Benoit’s like a brother to him but knocked him out in their first match together.
Super Juniors tournament- He remembers staying out every night with Benoit, Fit, Dean Malenko, Too Cold Scorpio, and X-Pac (then the Lightning Kid), then they’d all have to go work out in the morning
Turning on El Hijo del Santo and joining up with “Love Machine” Art Barr- “I couldn’t stand Art Barr.” They kept butting heads. He calls him a beautiful person, though. Their chemistry in the ring was so good that they could read each others’ minds in the ring.
Konnan- They worked in Tijuana together and broke in the business around the same time. He doesn’t agree with his business methods but he’s always been a good friend.
The Los Gringos Locos gimmick- The fans came up with it, as they were originally going to be called American Machine due to Art’s nickname “Love Machine”. They had a lot of heat with the crowd, which he attributes solely to Art because “I had no charisma back then… not that I do now.” He’d suplex everyone and their mothers while Art would get them heat and it really worked.
What did he think about the HUGE heat they had? It was okay for him because he knew that being a Mexican who was raised in the United States and embraced American culture really pissed off AAA’s Mexican fanbase. He didn’t think they were going to get as much heat as they did, but figures that it was because no one beat up Hijo and Octagon as bad as they would. He’s has bags of piss thrown at him by fans, rocks, etc.
Louie Spicoli (Rad Radford, Madonna’s Boyfriend in AAA)- He’d had a match with him two years before their run in 1994. He liked working with Louie.
Working face or heel- He can work face but he feels that he is a natural heel and that it just feels right for him when he wrestles as such. He doesn’t really know how to be a face in the US and says that the only reason he was a face in the WWF was because of Chyna. He feels the fans wanted to hate him but loved her too much.
How were he and Art approached about losing their hair to Hijo Del Santo and Octagon at the AAA- When Worlds Collide pay per view? The match was supposed to be him against Hijo, but Art talked to some people and suggested a different angle, which ended up with them losing a hair vs. mask match.
Were there plans for him and Art to break up? They were supposed to tease a breakup after losing their hair but nothing ever came of it. Any breakup between them was only going to be temporary as they’d only been teaming for a short time and were great together.
Talking to Paul Heyman about coming into ECW to face Public Enemy- Art was talking to Paul E about it and there was talk about them coming in. Nothing was definite, though. There were no offers from the WWF or WCW.
How did Art change as time went on? He thinks that it was him changing and not Art. He thinks that if he doesn’t like something, he figures it’s him that has to change. You can either whine, bitch, and moan, or you can change.
Finding out about Art’s death- After a long silence, he finally says he got a call when he was in Japan. His soon-to-be ex-wife made the call and said that “Art OD’ed”, but he was confused at first because one of his friends in El Paso was also named Art.
How did Art’s death affect him personally and professionally? It scared him a lot at the time. It ended up lighting a fire under his ass to make more money. Success is measured in different ways, but money will be there for his kids if he dies.
Going back to New Japan as Black Tiger- They brought him in as Black Tiger because they were reviving Tiger Mask’s old enemies and Fit Finlay, who usually played Black Tiger, was unavailable for the tour. This was around the time when he got blackballed in Mexico for a year, so he didn’t care if he was wearing a mask or not. He’d gotten blackballed as a result of some disputes with the booker of AAA, Juan Rivera.
Working with Jushin “Thunder “ Liger- “Awesome, a dream come true. He works for the match, not for himself.” Outside the ring, he’s gentle and funny.
Great Sasuke- Phenomenal worker and a humble guy.
Super J-Cup 1994- It was exciting because they sold out the Sumo Palace in about a day for a show of just Junior Heavyweights, which helped destroy some of the stigma around that division’s drawing power.
Who did he like to work with in Japan? Liger, who’s the ultimate professional.
Deciding on the frog splash as a finishing move- He got it from La Tierra and used it LONG before Art Barr did it. He puts over Rob Van Dam for doing the move well. It was originally the Jackknife Splash but when Too Cold Scorpio saw Art’s version of it, he called it a frog splash and the name stuck.
Wrestling Too Cold Scorpio at the ECW Arena- He had chills that night. It was one of his early matches after Art’s death and he knew that they were supposed to have been there as a tag team. He was surprised at how the fans took to him. He was surprised that he won the TV title in the first night because he thought he was just doing a shot then coming back later.
What were the fans like? They were great… it made for some of the best experiences he’s ever had in wrestling.
Paul E- Paul always treated him right, so he doesn’t have any problems with him. He knows Paul has a lot of bad blood with a lot of people, but not with him.
How did the ECW locker room treat him? They treated him with respect and those guys were wild.
Dean Malenko? The matches were awesome, and he was one of those people like Benoit who’s always there for him.
The 2 out of 3 falls match he and Dean had- They forgot half of what they’d planned before the match, so they improvised a lot of it.
Telling Paul E that he was leaving- He told him personally. Paul E was a little upset he was leaving, but understood.
How did he find out he was coming to WCW? Kevin Sullivan told him they wanted him to come in.
Were any promises made to him when he came in? Only that he wouldn’t get jobbed out like all the other small wrestlers who came in. It was pretty much just an opportunity.
How did WCW initially treat him? Awesome. That first year there was one of his best years ever.
Skydiving J- “Was I there for that one?” Once he was told that he wrestled Sasuke, he remembers. The company flew his soon-to-be-ex wife in and they stayed there for a week between the first and second shows. The day of the second show, they got food poisoning so bad that he had to go to the hospital and he got a huge shot of vitamins in order to wrestle that night.
Working with Ric Flair at Hog Wild 96- He felt that he screwed up and didn’t produce as good as a match as he wanted to.
Who did he travel with? Always Dean and Benoit.
Feuding with Diamond Dallas Page- DDP is a hard worker and he admires that work ethic. What he hates is that DDP scripts the matches down to every lockup, because you have to be able to adapt the match to the fans. He also didn’t like the way he won the belt off DDP, too, because it was extremely overbooked (Scott Hall, Kevin Nash, AND Eddy had to use their finishes to put DDP out for the pin). He says that the match was designed to get DDP over, which he usually doesn’t have a problem with as long as they’re straight up about it instead of playing politics.
Souled Out 1997 against Syxx (X-Pac)- He’s mad because it could have been a good match but it wasn’t. They’d never had a chance to prepare before and it was his first ladder match ever. He knows that it was a disappointment to everyone and wishes he could have made it better.
Uncensored 1997 vs. Dean Malenko- When he jumped off the top rope to the floor, he accidentally collided with Dean in a way that he tore up his legs when Dean threw him into the railing.
Coming back as a heel- He convinced the bookers to turn him heel because he’d been getting heel reactions ever since the DDP match.
Chavo Guerrero Jr. coming in to WCW- He talked Eric Bischoff into giving him a chance and they let Steven Regal (William Regal) work with him on his tryout match. Chavo had a look that Eric liked, so they gave him a developmental deal.
Eric Bischoff- They got along fine at the time, as Eric was always straight up with him. They did have their occasional arguments, though. One time he asked for a release from WCW and grudgingly got it from Bischoff, but he ended up staying.
Fall Brawl 97 vs. Chris Jericho for the Cruiser Belt- Good match. They got to build it up instead of high-spotting it to death.
Did the term Crusierweight bother him? No, but it has crossed his mind that the cruiser label may have given a negative image in the eyes of the fans.
Ultimo Dragon- Very talented wrestler. He’s known him for years and always liked his style. Hasn’t known him personally, but he was always professional.
Halloween Havoc 97 vs. Rey Misterio Jr. in a title vs. mask match- He loves Rey like his little brother. “He’s kamakaze… he has no fear.” He sees Rey having no fear while working with him as a compliment because it means Rey has a lot of faith in him. He’s one of his favorite people. Rey learned psychology while he was in WCW and is not just a spot-machine anymore.
The Chavo-Eddy feud- Chavo hated having to wear the “Eddy Guerrero is my favorite wrestler” shirt and hated the feud in general. He pissed and moaned and kicked chairs around throughout the early part of the feud despite Eddy telling him that he’d get more over than him at the end. Chavo did come up with the idea of losing a hair vs. hair match to him even though it was two months before his wedding.
Konnan in WCW- He was humble in the WCW lockerroom. “He’s a survivor.” Konnan knows how to promote himself and weasel his way into spots, which is a good quality in the business.
The promo about Eric Bischoff holding him back- He came up with it and pitched it to Eric at the last minute and Eric liked it. He was scared out of his mind doing it and wishes he could have gone back and prepared more for it.
They change tapes here and go to an Eddy match as Black Tiger in Japan.
Black Tiger vs. Jushin “Thunder” Liger- This match is from Best of the Super Juniors III. I want to say I’ve seen this before because my Puro and Lucha Libre hookup, William Helmick, has made me some good Juniors comps. This is clipped, as it goes from the entrances to a few minutes into the match. Tiger defeats Liger with a top rope brainbuster (this is not an ordinary superplex because Liger LANDS ON HIS FRIGGIN’ HEAD).
Black Tiger vs. Wild Pegasus (Chris Benoit)- This match is joined in progress and is also from Best of the Super Juniors III. Tiger wins this one with a top rope brainbuster on Pegasus.
Back to the shoot
Hulk Hogan- He always kept to himself in the locker room. He never did anything bad to him that he knows of.
Kevin Nash and Scott Hall- They knew their positions. He doesn’t like to talk bad about people unless they treated him bad and he doesn’t think they treated him bad personally. He’s heard hearsay about how he, Dean, and Benoit were called the Vanilla Midgets (Meaning they were short, had no charisma, no entertainment value, etc.) and so forth. He thinks they may have had a point in some those comments, BUT it was a product of the Japanese style they were taught and they never adapted to the US style of playing to the crowd after high spots. That’s the only negative thing he really has to say about that.
Were the politics really evident between the cliques? He saw a little of the politics, but he didn’t go looking for it. He was more concerned with producing in the ring.
The Latino World Order- It was supposed to be for Konnan but he had joined the nWo Wolfpac and they didn’t want to mess with that, so Eddy got it instead. He thinks they gave it to him to shut him up more than anything else, but that it actually was taking off until his car accident.
His car accident on New Year’s Day 1999- He fell asleep at the wheel and his drug problems were starting to get out of hand. He took some GHB and got hungry, so he drove to the store to got some food then passed out on the way home. According to the police, he was going 130 miles an hour when he had the accident and everyone thought he was dead at first, but someone pulled over to check on him and called an ambulance when they say him moving. He woke up in the hospital right before his operation, passed out again until he woke up DURING the operation and had to be restrained, then woke up in the Intensive Care Unit afterwards. There was a legitimate fear he wouldn’t come back to the ring since he’d fractured his hip socket in the accident.
Training to come back- He came back sooner than he should have because he wanted to come back so bad, as well as the fact that he was under pressure to make money and to try and keep his spot. It contributed seriously to his drug problem because he started taking the pills at first for his pain but kept taking them after the pain went away. He tried to get off of them at one point but couldn’t because he was already hooked.
How did he train to come back? His friend from home, Art, would “get my ass to the gym.” It was frustrating at first because he used to be able to curl 40 pounds but had to start on the 5 pound weights. His comeback took six months when he’d been told it was supposed to take eight and feels that, in hindsight, he came back way too early.
Working in the Filthy Animals with Konnan, Rey Misterio, and Billy Kidman- It was a great opportunity and very exciting. They all got a fresh chance under Vince Russo.
Leaving WCW with the other Radicalz (Perry Saturn, Chris Benoit, and Dean Malenko)- He was ready for his release before Russo and Ed Ferrara came in, but gave them a chance when they arrived. When he heard that the old guard was taking back over, he wasn’t happy. It wasn’t Kevin Sullivan taking over as much as “the old structure” and all the same old bullshit. When Perry Saturn and others were in discussions with Benoit and Malenko about leaving, they asked them if they should talk to Eddy and both Benoit and Malenko went “Oh, don’t worry… Eddy’s in.” He says he’s loyal until he’s been screwed a few times. At that point, he won’t bury you but he’ll start protecting himself. They had come up to Bill Busch and talked about how they wanted to change the structure. Busch took it as a threat and, combined with some of the issues Kevin Sullivan had with the boys, some people took it personally. They were treated as if they were the enemy by many people. Eddy agrees that Kevin Sullivan helped them all but that if a guy doesn’t produce, helping them doesn’t mean shit. He puts over how Kevin Sullivan got the company to take the Junior Heavyweights seriously and says that whatever bad blood there is between Kevin and Benoit stays between them.
Did personal issues get in the way of business? They shouldn’t have but they did. It got in the way backstage but not in the ring. He says there’s a lot more to the story than what is said, but refuses to go into specifics.
Did they consider going to ECW instead of the WWF- They’d wanted out of WCW for months and they didn’t particularly care where they ended up, so they had talked to Paul E about coming back in just in case the WWF or New Japan didn’t want them.
Contacting the WWF about coming in- They just called up and the company was VERY interested. When asked about Shane Douglas and why he didn't come to the WWF with them, he makes a big deal about how your family comes first and they couldn’t piss around waiting until they could patch up the relationship between Shane and Vince. (Shane left the WWF on bad terms in 1995 after running afoul of The Clique, especially Scott Hall and Shawn Michaels) Konnan wanted in at one point and had said that he was told that he and Benoit were the main guys the WWF wanted and that everyone else would be dealt with individually.
Making his WWF debut on RAW on January 31, 2000- He remembers slipping on the ropes that first night, then dislocating his elbow the next night. He was pressured into returning before he should have in order to make the angle work.
What were the differences between the two locker rooms? Night and day, but things when he left (mid-2001) were pretty bad. It wasn’t as bad as in WCW but it wasn’t pretty.
What was it like coming into the WWF- Very professional.
What was the locker room reaction to them? The Radicalz weren’t sure how to act around the locker room, so they were very quiet.
How does he feel about their jump signaling the downfall of WCW- He refuses to comment on that because he doesn’t want to be a dick about it. He’ll speak for Dean, Perry, and Benoit by saying that they’re workhorses and they bring a quality to the ring that few people can do.
Was he surprised WCW would go out of business? He thought they’d be down for a while but that they’d never go under.
What about the 6-man tag match at Wrestlemania 2000? It was a milestone moment because he never thought he’d be in a Wrestlemania.
Did anyone try to hold them down? They didn’t notice it and they’d had their guard up.
Pairing him with Chyna- He thought it was a good thing because they had a lot of chemistry. He didn’t understand her for the longest time because it was a lot of fun for most of it, but it was ugly towards the end. He says she was going through a lot of personal problems and that it showed in her work. “She was mad at the world and I was part of the world.” It was hard for him to deal with her being mad all the time. He understands her now, though. He says that the comments about her being hard to deal with towards the end were true, but that the big-head comments about her don’t really describe the situation properly because there was a lot more behind it.
Where did the Latino Heat gimmick and the Mamacita stuff come from? He came up with it and he liked it a lot. He borrowed the Latino Heat gimmick from the movie The Birdcage. He mentioned his Latino Heat in an interview and got a HUGE pop, so the office ran with it.
Initial impressions of Vince McMahon- Very professional businessman. He wasn’t happy to be let go, but that was his fault and not Vince’s.
Did he enjoy being in the skits? Yeah, he really got into the Latino Heat character so it was a lot of fun.
Working with Benoit? “He’s my brother… I love working with him.” He’s like Liger in that he works for the match and not for himself.
Triple H- Great to work with. Anybody can say anything they want to about him, but look at the proof of his work. He was always very respectful, etc. “If he did get special treatment, it was because of his work.”
Kurt Angle- Kurt’s hungry. No matter what he does, he’s still hungry for more.
Stacy Carter- That was a one-time deal just to mess with Chyna.
Putting the Radicalz back together between No Mercy 2000 and Survivor Series 2000- “The office was stuck on how to go from A to D [in HHH's heel turn where he revealed he had Austin run over], so we became B and C.”
The four-way match with Jericho, Benoit, and X-Pac at No Way Out 2001- They talked a lot before they went out and had 5 minutes before the match started, so they got to put everything into it that they wanted.
What did he think about the feud that was building up between himself, the Hardy Boyz, and Lita before he was sent to rehab? It was fun but he didn’t know where it was going.
What’s his relationship with Jim Ross like? There were some things he didn’t like that JR said about him when he went to rehab, but he understands why he said them.
Why did he go to rehab? He was told “Go to rehab or you’re fired”, but he’s very glad that he did it.
Were you 100% ready to return? Obviously not, since he got a DUI. He wants to take responsibility for what he did, though, and appreciates how the WWF took care of him, sent him to rehab, and was ready to bring him back in when he screwed up and got into a wreck. He was clean for about 5 months then started drinking. On his second night after he fell off the wagon, he got his DUI. He thinks that it happened due to stresses from his divorce, financial issues, being unable to see his kids, and having to live alone for the first time in years, but that none of those are any excuse for what he did and now he’s paying the consequences for it. “Sometimes I kick myself in the ass and sometimes I realize that [DUI] was the best thing to happen to me.”
Did he think that the WWF would let him go? “I knew they would. I have a sixth sense and you can ask Chavo Jr. about this.” He was told by an agent that he wouldn’t be fired but that it was the last straw, but then found out from that agent shortly thereafter that he was indeed fired. He doesn’t know if the door is open for a return, but he’s not hanging his hopes and ambitions on it. “They didn’t screw it up, I did. I don’t have to prove anything to them, I’ve got to prove it to God and myself.”
Does the business put a lot of strain on a person? Yes, but professionals are expected to deal with the pressures. He says that a lot of guys have more pressure on them than him but they can handle it. He talks about how Steven Regal has pulled it together and is surviving in the WWF.
Juventud Guerrera- “He’s a nut… a talented nut. He’s wild at heart and reminds me a lot of me.”
What about his body? “This is the most injury-free I’ve been since 1991” because he’s had so much time off. He doesn’t need to wear the brace on his elbow anymore and can still do his frog splash without hurting himself.
Does he have any regrets? “I have a lot of regrets over the wrong decisions I’ve made. I wish I could have done a lot of stuff over but I can’t. All I can do is learn from the mistakes.”
What’s you’re fondest memory in the business? After thinking long and hard, he can’t decide but talks about the natural rush you get after a match when you get a big reaction from a crowd, such as after his Halloween Havoc match with Rey or the ECW matches with Dean. (I’m sure he had another memorable moment after those matches with RVD and Edge a few months back, where he got at least one HUGE standing ovation after he lost.)
Any good rib stories? He got his eyebrows shaved by the Nasty Boys once after he got a Mickey in his beer. He also heard that he had his dick out in his hand, the stewardess freaked out a bit, and Benoit calmed her down by putting a blanket over it. He also says they left him with a Hitler mustache when they were done. (That doesn't top some of the Nasty Boys' other work, like slipping Bill Dundee a Mickey on an international flight and turning him into a human sundae, complete with a cherry on top. Gary Cappetta's book has some photos of that particular rib.)
Sting- He’s influenced me spiritually.
Lex Luger- Great body.
The Rock- Strives for perfection. Hard work. Some of the best interviews he’s ever seen.
Steve Austin- Saved the WWF’s ass. Workhorse. Can do it all.
Shane McMahon- Driven. Perfectionist. Has a lot of perservearance.
Stephanie McMahon- Intelligent.
Does he have anything to say to his fans? “Thanks for your support. I hope I can keep bringing you satisfaction. If it wasn’t for the fans, the business wouldn’t be here. I’m grateful if you yell ‘Eddy, Eddy!’ or ‘Eddy sucks!’ as long as you just don’t stay quiet.
Black Tiger cuts a promo leading into the Black Tiger and Great Sasuke vs. Chris Benoit and Ohtani match.
Black Tiger and Great Sasuke vs. Chris Benoit and Ohtani- Benoit and Ohtani win after Benoit puts Tiger on his head (like for a Destruction Device) then Ohtani does a friggin TOP ROPE HURRICANRANA on him before giving him a bridged suplex for a pin. (It looked like a German suplex to me, but I’m not Mike Tenay up in this mo-fo.)
Los Gringos Locos and someone else vs. three Luchadors- This is a six-man match broadcast in Spanish and I can’t understand a damn word other than “Los Gringos Locos”, some names, and the usual college Spanish like cerveza, vino, and tequila. It’s joined in progress and is a gigantic schmoz, which is not unusual for a huge Lucha tag match if someone forgets a spot. Octagon makes a run-in and gets his ass kicked. Fuerza Guerrera, Psicosis, and others tease a run-in for a few minutes before attacking the Gringos Locos in a gigantic Rudos vs. Tecnicos street fight. This is making my head hurt because there are about 30 people in and around the ring but I can only recognize about 6 of them. It’s just as well that I’ll be watching AAA: When Worlds Collide again soon because that will refresh me about most of these guys that I don’t recognize.
Los Gringos Locos (in American flag suits) vs. Octagon and El Hijo del Santo- This appears to be for the Gringos’ National Tag Belts. This is fought under Lucha rules, so it’s a 2 of 3 falls match. The Gringos hit a Destruction Device on Octagon to eliminate him, then a frog splash on Hijo del Santo to take the first fall. Hijo del Santo and Octagon then take the second fall by hitting a Destruction Device of their own on Art Barr and what I can only describe as a top-rope facebuster on Eddy. Hijo del Santo reverses an Eddy superplex into a pin and Octagon rolls through a top rope cross body by Art Barr for the pin and the third fall.
Next is HORRIBLE footage of a Black Tiger vs. Wild Pegasus match joined in progress. It looks to be a great match but the video is some of the most unwatchable stuff I’ve ever seen… and I’ve see the Tiger Mask comps put out by at least one “respectable” tape dealer (not Feinstein). Pegasus does a top rope piledriver on Tiger for the pin. I’m not sure who’s crazier… Benoit for doing the move or Eddy for taking it.
Black Tiger vs. Ohtani? (I can’t read Kanji, so if it’s not him I don’t have a clue who it is)- Ohtani hits a springboard dropkick on Tiger then pins him with a double-armed bridged suplex.
Thoughts- This is a great all-around package. Not only is Eddy excessively honest, the matches included on this tape are a good sampling of his work. It covers not only his ECW work but also his time in Japan and in Mexico. Eddy is certainly one of the most open people I’ve ever seen on this and, after seeing him talk here, can DEFINITELY believe the stories of his good behavior since returning to the WWE. (Eddy is known for staying out of trouble and reading his AA books all the time in order to keep on the straight and narrow.) I’ll go for a rating of Highly Recommended here, although this is still no Arn Anderson or Jim Cornette.