Sunday, 24 October 2004

11th-24th October 2004

Monday, 11th October, 2004:
When I heard that the subject of this week's Shoot Interview was Bam Bam Bigelow, I have to admit I didn't have high hopes.



But I'm prepared to admit that I was wrong. Although it was a good few years old, Triple B's thoughts and stories from his time in the wrestling business made for entertaining viewing. And who can forget his story about a six man tag-team match involving the late, great, Andre the Giant. If you want to know what I'm talking about, you'll have to buy the video off a trader. I'll warn you now though, don't watch this segment while eating your supper!

Tuesday, 12th October, 2004:
This was the match I had been waiting for. After a problem with the tapes a few weeks ago, we finally got to see the full version of the MLW War Games match.

If a promotion gets a gimmick match right, then it has a sure-fire winner on it's hands, and while it will never live up to the War Games bouts of the past, it will be remembered as the first War Games bout of the 21st century, and a damn good one at that.

Wednesday, 13th October, 2004:
Long-time readers of my work will know that in the past I've been a keen admirer of Jeff Jarrett's work.

But this week's TNA show proved they can put on a great show when Double J isn't the centre of attention. Almost every bout, including the NWA title match between A.J. Styles and Ron Killings, were highly enjoyable.

Could it be that Double J's need to be the centre of TNA attention if harming the promotion? I'll let you be the judge of this.

Thursday, 14th October, 2004:
Nothing much to report today, except a brief flirtation with Ring of Honor, and what turned out to be a great match between the future Second City Saints, Colt Cabana and C.M. Punk. It's this kind of action that is slowly but surely warming me up to the ROH product.

Friday, 15th October, 2004:
It was a cop-out, and it's something the WWE have been guilty of a lot lately.

Picture the scene - British wrestler William Regal is wrestling in front of British fans for the first time in ages, teaming with his buddy Eugene against La Pseudo Froggies, the current World Tag-Team Champions. After walloping one of the Pseudo Froggies with the brass knuckles, Regal scores the winning pin fall, and as we go to the break, Regal and Eugene are celebrating the fact that they are the new World Tag-Team Champions.

We come back from the break, and we see that the match has been restarted. General Manager Eric Bischoff, in his infinite wisdom, ordered that the match should be restarted during the commercials.

Am I the only one who thinks that this sucks, that this is a complete cop-out by the creatives? In years gone by, Davey Boy Smith was treated as royalty whenever the WWF toured these shores. Regal is currently the most high-profile wrestler from Britain at the moment. He's stayed loyal with the company, and came back from what could have been a career ending illness. So why isn't Regal afforded the same courtesies that Davey Boy had?

Saturday, 16th October, 2004:
A prime example of just how fickle, and sometimes unpatriotic, wrestling fans can be at times.

One of today's World of Sport shows took us back to the Fairfield Halls in Croydon in 1984, as an English team faced off against their Scottish counterparts in a special one night tournament.

So we've established that the tournament took place in the heart of England. So who did the English fans cheer? Yep, you guessed it, the Scottish boys. Well, perhaps the English shouldn't have had Tally Ho Kaye and Cyanide Syd Cooper on their side! Examples of how you can never really love certain wrestlers.

Sunday, 17th October, 2004:
The votes are in, and they've been added up. Now, we have....not Taboo Tuesday, but the Best of World of Sport on TWC's Supercard Sunday show.

Although I had seen all the matches before, it was still a great show. However, I must make my annoyance known at three particular aspects of this show:

Why didn't anyone vote for a Les Kellett match? Perhaps the greatest showman in British wrestling history wasn't considered good enough for this competition.

How the hell did the Disco Challenge match get in here? Granted, Kendo Nagasaki and Clive Myers were two of the greats, but this sham match promoted by Brian Dixon and Peter Stringfellow should be consigned to the bowls of hell.

Owen Hart v Marty Jones didn't even get a look in. The greatest match from 1987 earned high praise when it was first show in TWC over six months ago, yet it was nowhere to be seen.

Well, I suppose that's what you get when you make a wrestling show interactive.

Monday, 18th October, 2004:
So what's the greatest quote in the history of the Shoot Interview series? Jake Roberts proclaiming eternal misery? Everything that Jim Cornette said? Definitely none of Dustin Rhodes' inane ramblings.

This particular award goes to Bam Bam Bigelow, while having a bit of fun with a telephone caller name Anthony, who apparently couldn't hear what Bam Bam was saying to him. All together now..... "Anthony, take the dildo out of your ear!"

Tuesday, 19th October, 2004:I could never live in America. I've got nothing against the country, even though I don't
agree with some of their politics. It's just that I could never change habits that have taken years to form. That's why I only watch the Raw repeat on Friday nights, and why I found it difficult to watch Raw tonight. It just didn't seem right. But as it was leading directly into a pay-per-view.....

So did Taboo Tuesday work? Well, I suppose it achieved what it set out to do. Take out the two diva matches, which only seemed to be there to satisfy the lust of Jerry Lawler, and you had a good wrestling show.

But it also proved that Vince McMahon never really watched Nitro, otherwise he would have known about Eric Bischoff's hair care products.

Special mention must go to Ric Flair and Shawn Michaels. A lot of people are down on Flair, and in the past I've been one of those people. But in putting Randy Orton over in the cage match, he again proved that he can still do the right thing.

And HBK's performance, on one leg, had to be seen to be believed.

Wednesday, 20th October, 2004:
Is Brian Dixon working in Memphis at the moment? This afternoon, I caught the latest episode of rhythm and bruise wrestling, and saw Spider-Man apparently feuding with Kid Kash. Could it be that All-Star has signed an agreement with Memphis Wrestling?

Seriously though, when you watch Memphis Wrestling, you see the best of Jerry Lawler. On Raw he comes across as nothing more than a dirty old man character, who sits behind the commentary desk lusting after the various divas.

In Memphis, it's totally different. Lawler's the ultimate villain, cold and calculated, knowing that he is a legend in the territory. This is Lawler at his best, and if you're only familiar with the WWE version of the King, you'll be pleasantly surprised if you tune into Memphis Wrestling.

Then it was on to another great TNA show, and again, this may have been because Jeff Jarrett was nowhere to be seen. Even Team Canada impressed me with their appearance, but this may have something to do with the absence of Teddy Hart from this new version of the team.

But the highlight of the night had to be the A.J. Styles v Raven title match. I wasn't that impressed with Raven's previous match against Chris Harris, but this one showed that when he's up against the right opponent, namely, A.J. Styles, he can still put on a great match. Mind you, I don't think I've seen a bad A.J. Styles match since TWC began.

Thursday, 21st October, 2004:
On WWE Wrestling Classics, we're now in the summer of 1992. The Dangerous Alliance is no more, Big Van Vader has just defeated Sting for the World title, and good ol' Cowboy Bill Watts is in charge of the whole show.

Possibly the most amusing part of the show was the appearance of one Scotty Flamingo in a tag-team match. Here, Scotty was being touted by ol' Bill as one of the top light-heavyweights in the world, a top contender for Brad Armstrong's newly won light-heavyweight title. Somehow, "Quote the Flamingo, nevermore" doesn't have the same
ring to it.

Friday, 22nd October, 2004:
Damn, no repeat of Raw tonight. Mind you, I've seen it already. So what do I have left?

Well, it seems that I'm not the only one who was annoyed with the way William Regal had been treated when Raw came to these shores. Looks like Blake Norton and Brian Alvarez shared the same view as me. It sends a shiver down my spine when the majority of wrestling writers actually agree on something!

Saturday, 23rd October, 2004:
It's been a while since I've done this sort of thing, but this afternoon I treated myself to a three hour marathon of British wrestling action.

We started off with the weekly FWA show, something I haven't seen in a while, and the on-screen debut of the new Stevie Knight/Mark Sloan tag-team. These two seem like polar opposites to me. Sloan is definitely a new school kind of wrestler, which seems totally different to Knight. Just witness Stevie's crawl to his corner, and his other mannerisms, whenever things didn't go in his favour during the bout. You can see there that the Shining Light is clearly inspired by the stars of yesteryear.

Then we saw All-England Champion Hade Vansen going up against Steve Corino. In fact, it was this match that made me tune into this week's show. The past few weeks hadn't exactly grabbed my attention match-wise, but this effort certainly made up for the missed couple of weeks.

But I must take mention of the All-England title belt. Is it me, or does it look like a negative of the FWA title belt?

Going back to the subject of yesteryear, two great matches were shown to us on World of Sport this week. The first was a great bout between Kung Fu and Mick McManus, two of the greats of British wrestling. McManus was on top form, and used every underhanded trick in the book in order to overcome the martial arts master. But it wasn't enough.

Then we had a great heavyweight bout between Tony St. Clair and Pat Roach. If this match had been shown before the recent World of Sport Supercard compilation, this would probably have got my vote, it was that good.

Then it was on to Smackdown. I never really watched Tough Enough before. Perhaps I should have, and perhaps if I'd been doing a television review column back then, I would have, but for some reason, this segment intrigued me a great deal. It was certainly better than the Diva Search we had to put up with on Raw. Is it me, or did that thing go on for
ages?

But back on topic, it certainly will be interesting to see these men take their first, formative steps in the wrestling business.

Sunday, 24th October, 2004:
Ultimate mark-out time, as TWC presents us with a collection of Chris Benoit's best matches from his time in Japan in the Supercard Sunday slot.

Can anybody tell me if they've ever seen a poor Benoit match? The guy can make anyone look good, even Billy Gunn, while looking like a million dollars himself. This was a great show, a good profile of the former WWE World Champion.

Ultimate, ultimate mark-out time saw the exchanges, albeit in a tag match, between Benoit and Dean Malenko. It hasn't been this good since the two met at Road Wild a few years back.Highlight of the fortnight: William Regal winning the World Tag-Team title in front of his home crowd.

Lowlight of the fortnight: William Regal being stripped of the World Tag-Team title seconds later.