Thursday, 12 July 2007

Behind Closed Doors with Jake Roberts - DVD Review

It’s no secret that I’ve been a fan of Jake “The Snake” Roberts in the past. He was one of the wrestlers that got me hooked on American wrestling back in 1989, and having worked with him during his stay here in Britain, I’ve been lucky, and unlucky enough to see many aspects of the man’s character.
“Behind Closed Doors with Jake Roberts” is the latest release from British company Red Church Productions. Licensed from RF Video, this is the first time that Jake has conducted an interview in this manner since his previous RF Shoot Video about five years ago.

And it’s certainly an interesting insight into the man. Many people say that Jake only gives the same interview over andover. This may be the case, but you can’t deny that the man is passionate about the wrestling industry, and that he knows what he’s talking about.

As well as giving his views on the current state of the wrestling business, and just what’s wrong with today’s wrestling product, Jake spends a little time talking about his time in Britain. Sadly, hardly any mention is made of the promotions he worked for, or the various incidents that blighted his stay here, although he does go into detail about his legal problems with the RSPCA. Jake’s claims that he was the victim of tabloid journalism have been heard countlesstimes before from other celebrities, and given the nature of the print media here in Britain, this probably won’t be the last time we’ve heard this kind of story.

Of course, there’s the usual rant towards Barry Blaustein and Beyond The Mat, and the references to his personal demons. But when it comes to talking about the wrestling business, Jake is spot on with a lot of things. There’s a lot of things that professional wrestlers just don’t do these days, and this is what’s harming the business. Those breaking into the business would do well to heed Jake’s advice.

One thing I did find interesting about this was Jake’s comments towards WWE. This interview was filmed last February, just a few weeks before Jake appeared on Raw, so it kind of smacked of double standards when Jake said that WWE stood for Worst Wrestling Ever, and he described Chris Jericho as Jeri-blow, saying that Jericho tended to blow lots of moves. Given that he appeared on Raw shortly afterwards, and there’s tons of rumours going around about Jake wanting to work for WWE on the creative side of things, it makes you realise just how quickly opinions can change in the wrestling business.

In conclusion, it’s an interesting insight into one of the greatest creative talents the wrestling industry has ever seen. Jake may have his detractors, depending on what day of the week it is, but there’s no denying what the man has done for the business, and no denying that, if he ever won the battle with his personal demons, what an asset he could be for the business for years to come.