Sunday, 16 May 2004

10th-16th May 2004

Monday, 10th May, 2004;
She's my best mate, and I love her to bits, but at times she can be really annoying.

It's the third and final part of the Jim Cornette Shoot Interview. Around 10.30, I remembered that I hadn't called her. I thought I'd better give her a ring to see how she was, because she'd been a bit down over the weekend.

However, what was meant to be a quick five minute telephone call turned into a one-hour conversation.

As I turned back to my television around 11.30, I found that the damn interview had finished. She'd kept me talking for so long, I'd missed the entire thing!

I swear, that woman could talk the hind legs off a donkey. Oh well, suppose I'll have to wait for the Thursday teatime repeat. I'll remember to turn both my mobile and land-line phones off then.

Tuesday, 11th May, 2004;
Alas, other things have taken me away from my wrestling viewing.

I remember tuning in to watch CMLL and New Japan, but I don't remember anything that happened. This can be put down to one thing - a painful trip to the dentist. A tooth that had broken a few weeks ago was poked and prodded with a very sharp implement. To say that I was in pain would be an understatement.Ibuprofen became my best friend that night.

Wednesday, 12th May, 2004;
If you wanted to see a perfect example of ring-rust, then take a look at this week's edition of TNA.

The Total Package, Lex Luger, made his first wrestling appearance since the closure of WCW in 2001, teaming with NWA Champion Jeff Jarrett against A.J. Styles and Sting.

This was by far the worst main event I'd seen on a TNA show since The Wrestling Channel began, and it was all Luger's fault. He looked to be in great physical shape, but he was slow, plodding, hardly mobile. His moves were basic, a clothesline, a kick to his opponent as he lay on the canvas. This was definitely not the Lex Luger of old, the Luger who had barnstorming matches with the likes of Flair, Sting, Hogan, and dare I say it, during his last run with WCW with Goldberg.

It was embarrassing to watch, and if I'd been at the Asylum that night, or if I'd ordered the show when it originally aired on pay-per-view, I would have asked for my money back.

But then again, I guess the Jarretts got exactly what they paid for.

Thursday, May 13th, 2004;
I locked the doors and windows. I turned off both of my telephones. And then I sat down to watch the final part of the Jim Cornette Shoot Interview.

It was worth the wait. Having gotten through the early stages of his career, and then his time in WCW, it was nice to hear about what he's doing down in OVW, and how he came to be involved in the WWE's premier feeder federation. I keep hearing some great things about OVW, and I keep thinking to myself that it's about time to get hold of some tapes to see what all the fuss is about, even if it's just to see what the likes of Cena, Lesnar and Batista were all about before they made it big.

A few hours later, and it was the FWA show I had been waiting for. I'd been harping on for weeks about the absence of their main man, "The Showstealer", Alex Shane, from national television. Finally, he made an appearance.

But this was after a brief profile of possibly the most annoyed man in the company, young Hade Vansen. We were given some background information on just why this young man is so angry at the moment, and even though it was taken out of context slightly, it was still good viewing, and it reminded me of the Teddy Hart situation over in CZW.

But back to Alex Shane. What this guy may lack in some areas of his wrestling game he certainly makes up for his charm and charisma. This show focused on his team with Ulf Hermann, and their war with Greg Lambert's Family faction. While this was good viewing, it would have been nice to see some of Alex's singles action, but I guess we'll get to see more of this in the coming weeks.

One honourable mention must go to my boss here at Wrestling X, Greg Lambert. I haven't seen much of his managerial work in the FWA, and I did think it was a little cheeky that he put himself over a little in his recent article on managers in Powerslam, but from what I saw here, he did okay, even though he's not in the class of a Bobby Heenan or a Jim Cornette. Mind you, now I've said something nice about him on t'internet, maybe he'll have another word with Fin Martin for me.

Going back to the Teddy Hart situation in CZW for a moment, I caught some of the show, and once again I'm left to wonder if this character portrayal may be overshadowing his actual wrestling ability.

Before slipping off to the land of nod, I caught some of 3PW for the first time since their so-called supercard a few weeks back. Apart from Ron Killings v Syxx-Pac, it was pretty much the usual rubbish. I hear that recent shows have been a lot better than what we've been seeing on The Wrestling Channel. I hope this is the case, and we get to see some of these shows on TWC soon.

Friday, 14th May, 2004;
It's the match we've all been waiting for. Nope, I'm not talking about the cage match pitting Chris Jericho against Christian, I'm talking about the long-awaited debut of Eugene.

There's been quite a bit of flack from all quarters regarding the introduction of a mentally handicapped character to the WWE roster. I had considered putting in my two cents worth a few weeks ago, but after thinking about the idea, the concept of the Eugene character, I decided against it. Until now.

Long-time wrestling fans will know that there's been characters similar to Eugene in the business for years. Half of the wrestlers in the history of the business would never have made it if everyone had complained about their characters. From The Moondogs to Kamala to Norman the Lunatic to George The Animal Steele, there's always been characters in the ring who have apparently lacked certain mental faculties.

And Eugene is merely the latest in the long line. The difference is that the world has changed, and we are now a more politically correct society. And, of course, this is wrestling we're talking about here. If the Eugene character had been introduced into a soap opera or a situation comedy, we wouldn't have battered an eye lid. But because Eugene is a wrestler, things are different. If he had been played by Dustin Hoffman and not Nick Dinsmore, we would have been hailing his performance.

Personally, I've enjoyed the portrayal of the character so far, and I really enjoyed Eugene's match with Rob Conway. Given the current story line surrounding the character, it's pretty obvious what's going to happen to him.

Did people get on their soap boxes too soon? Yes, they did, and I'm looking forward to seeing how this plays out in the coming weeks and months.

Saturday, 15th May, 2004;
For the first time in a number of weeks, I managed to catch the majority of Smackdown, and to be honest with you all, I wish I hadn't.

I've read a great deal in the wrestling press and on the Internet of how the Smackdown brand has gotten progressively worse recently. It seems that this is true.

The show seems to have become a modern day version of WCW, and this was kind of confirmed when I saw the line-up for the upcoming Judgement Day pay-per-view. Compared to what was handed to us, for free, on Raw this week, the Judgement Day card doesn't really set my pulse racing.

One confusing thing about Smackdown, and it's something I don't think the writers have really considered, surrounds the Guerrero family. Eddie Guerrero's mother recently suffered a heart attack after a confrontation with Bradshaw. Our Eddie has been understandably upset by the entire situation.

But what about Chavo? Isn't he upset about what happened to his grandmother. Says it all about families really.

Sunday, 16th May, 2004;
It's Supercard Sunday time again folks, and this week we take a journey to the Land of the Rising Sun, as we look back at Pro Wrestling NOAH's Navigation With Breeze show from last year.

Not wanting to sound xenophobic here, but who comes up with these names? Or was something lost in translation? Enough of that.

I haven't really watched that much NOAH since TWC began. There's just something about New Japan that appeals to me a great deal more. The show was entertaining though, and far better than the recent 3PW and CZW shows.

Earlier in the evening I had my first taste of Major League Wrestling for a while. Boasting a roster of former ECW alumni such as Raven, C.W. Anderson, Steve Corino and many more, the MLW shows have always impressed me, and it's a great shame that they had to close down. Given time they could have become a 21st century ECW, following behind WWE and TNA in the rating. A shame.

Highlight of the week - the excellent Jim Cornette Shoot Interview. It's a shame that the wrestling manager seems to have become a thing of the past.

Lowlight of the week - Smackdown. A fine example of how a wrestling show needs the kiss of life.