Sunday, April 02, 2006

Wrasslin' Thoughts

Wrasslin' Thoughts

How many beers did I drink before posting? (Answer: All of 'em).

You know, the Wrasslin' Thoughts used to pop up at least once a week 'round these parts.

Well, truth be told, I haven't watched the wrasslin' in weeks. Been underwhelmed for months with the level of storytelling. And that's sad. Because do you understand how little it takes to amuse me? Seriously. I'm a like a magpie. Give me a ball of tinfoil, and I'll be entertained for hours, assuming I don't decide to eat the sumbitch, and have that foil make electrical contact with one the fillings in my teeth.

What am I talking about?


Wrestlemania 22?

There's no end to the contempt I have for this show.

First, there's the whole "Big Time" theme song. It's like Vince McMahon decided that he wanted to use this song back in 1988, but couldn't find a way to work it into to the whole tournament setup of Wrestlemania 4. But instead of letting the idea be left in the detritus that was the 1980's, amongst the Mr. T Mohawks and Pee Wee Herman bowties, he's decided to dig out the Peter Gabriel classic in the year 2006.

Add to that this:

Rey Misterio Jr. I don't buy Rey Misterio. I've never bought him. Dude's 4'1". He's like a child in a goofy ass mask. Even against other cruiserweights, I don't but him. Wrestling is very much about suspension of disbelief. But I can't suspend disbelief when I see a guy who looks like your average fourth grader out there fighting 6'5" muscled-up goons. I can't get the image of Kevin Nash flinging Rey against a truck trailer like a lawn dart out of my head. I don't buy Rey as a Heavyweight Title Contender, and there's no amount of storytelling that'll change my mind.

Big Stupid Tommy: Obstinate Motherfucker.

Other things that bug me about Wrestlemania 22:

Eddie Guerrero.

Eddie Guerrero was a favorite of mine. He died in November 2005. Do you know how often I think about Eddie Guerrero? Maybe once, twice an hour. But definitely not enough to use his name to goad on somebody else. You know, there's a very morbid part of me that enjoys the absurdity of a few thousand mindless drones chanting a dead guy's name in the name of revving up the motor of guy who fake fights for a living.

This thing where we chant Eddy Guerrero's name in support of Rey Misterio (or Chavo Guerrero), it's a little morbid. No, it's a lot morbid. And if I was Rey Misterio, I'd be embarrassed to have come this far in my career, yet owe so much of my popularity to the death of one of my best friends.

Also: Randy Orton.

Randy Orton is a swolen pustule on the face of wrestling. I don't know how to spell something that I would describe as a puss-filled inflammation of the skin, but pustule looks best to my tipsy ass. Randy Orton is a mediocre in-ring worker. He cannot speak on the microphone. He has only the most basic knowledge of what goes on inside the ring, yet here he is headlining a Wrestlemania.

Along with Randy Orton, we have John Cena. Way back in the dulcet days of the year 2003, one of my favorite refrains when watching the WWE, was "When Will They Stop Shoving John Cena Down Our Throats?"

A few years back, my buddy Bill and I would wander to Smyrna, Tennessee, to see Bert Prentice promote a show for his Music City Wrestling promotion. We'd head up to the Smyrna flea market, where Bert would tape his TV show, every Wednesday. I have three distinct memories of this time.

1.) A mentally retarded girl chasing promoter Bert Prentice around, announcing at the top of her lungs that she'd bought a flower for him.

2.) A wrestler called The Atomic Dog getting utterly and completely comfused, to the point of breaking character, by the fact that, even though he was playing the heel, Bill and I were cheering for everything he did.

3.) Bert Prentice and family running around telling us who to cheer for.

I always think that Bill and I gave Bert problems, because we made a point to cheer for the bad guys. Meanwhile, behind the hard cameras, Bert and company would be jumping out of their shoes to try to get us to cheer for the Colorado Kid Mike Rapada (or whomever the babyface du jour was).

John Cena, to me, represents that.

Nobody likes John Cena. Not really.

He's bland. He does fourth-rate rap bullshit. He's contributed little more to the WWE product in-ring, than the idea that Vanilla Ice had more societal impact than making one of the worst movies ever made.

But somebody (Vince McMahon) in Titan Towers thinks we should like John Cena.

So, he's been Champ, headlining Pay-Per-View after Pay-Per-View. For a year, now.

Now, he's headlining Wrestlemania, against Triple H.

Which brings me to my next thing that bugs me about this particular Wrestlemania:

Triple H.

I won't go off too much on Triple H. His single-minded push for a legacy bugs me. My only complaint is that his stories seem to need to center around the World Title. He's a consummate in-ring storyteller. I think he could do so much more, that he could be a draw without having to "fight" for the World Title. But he's got that Bret Hart thing going. Where he's not worth as much without the World Title. I think Triple H has the thing going on where he wants to pass Ric Flair for number of World Title reigns.

But here's the thing. I don't know that, if I were in his place, with the ability and means to forge my own destiny, that I'd do anything differently than he is.

Last thing that's bugging me about Wrestlemania 22:

Chicago. Chicago Wrestlemanias suck. And I'm a big Chicago fan. Cubs. The city. Like it all.

Wrestlemania 13, and part of Wrestlemania 2 took place in Chicago. Both sucked asshole. In the bottom three, of all time.

This one's not shaping up any better. My tipsy ass my not be making much sense, but it seems like they didn't have a plan, for this Wrestlemania. At least with last Wrestlemania, there was a plan formed a few months in advance, with Cena and Batista getting the titles. A plan that was forged with the fans in mind.

This one? Makes no sense. I don't know. It just seems so run of the mill. There doesn't seem to be anything special about this show? I mean, if it weren't a Wrestlemania, there wouldn't be any reason to even watch the show.

I'm not watching the show, to end this post. Going to work. But I have to admit, if I didn't have the invite from the brother-in-law to head to the Buffalo Wild Wings, I wouldn't even think about checking this show out.

And you shouldn't either.



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