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Paranoid Rattlesnake
12-08-2003, 10:24 AM
Well I don’t know about you lot but I’m still a little shocked at what was one of the best WWE PPVs I’ve seen in years, Survivor Series 2003.

I’m just amazed that Vinny finally put on a show for the fans rather than just for the pleasure of certain WWE talent (*cough* Triple Dick *cough*) and that he finally realised that it is I, PR, who has the real vision in this industry. I’m expecting a phone call from Titan Towers at any minute, considering it was pretty much my show that they tanked.


As the WWE is currently in my good books, I’ve decided to take things a little easier on them in this column. But don’t expect it to last long, because I’m sure I’ll be back to my disapproving self soon.

As I said before, the WWE have finally wangled their way into PR's good graces, so this week we’re going to concentrate on the good rather than the bad, as we take a look at the positive differences between today’s product and that of yesteryear.


I’m just like the rest of you. I love to remember back to the days when spoilers didn’t exist, Hulk Hogan WAS immortal, the Bushwhackers made you laugh and Shawn Michaels’ mullet was too cool for school.


But were things really that good back then? And are things really that bad now?


Let’s take a trip down memory lane and compare old with new, to find out if things really were better back then.


Top Superstar:

There really was only one man for me when I just kiddie and that was The Hulkster. He was glamorous, passionate, tanned, and bald… what a guy. And of course, it didn’t hurt that he used to beat absolutely everybody in a superhuman manner.


Today, however, I’m not sure there is one man who stands out over everybody else. A few years ago we might have just been mentioning Stone Cold or The Rock, but since then several performers have come into the limelight.


Kurt Angle must be praised as my absolute favourite, but we’ve also got Goldberg (who looks like the formidable champion RAW needs), Brock Lesnar (who has looked almost superhuman himself in certain matches) and Shawn Michaels (I don’t care what anybody says, this guy is still one of the most talented and charismatic performers in the business - just listen to the crowd). That’s not even mentioning the elder statesmen of the WWE - Steve Austin and The Undertaker.


I suppose the point I’m trying to make is that surely the WWE is better off with five or six pinnacle superstars than just the one. What would have happened if Hogan had suffered a long-term injury in 1985? Wrestling history would have been so different.


Top Storyline:


Okay, I’m going to forget the Katie Vick debacle, as it was quite a while ago now. Instead I’m going to concentrate on what we’ve been seeing in the past month or so.


Christian and Chris Jericho have found themselves on new ground. These two fantastic heels have been lumped together with Lita and Trish respectively, but in a face capacity. Obviously the crowd have been waiting for Y2J and Christian to do something dastardly… but it hasn’t come yet(well not quite). I absolutely love this idea - a heel who becomes a face around a certain person. It’s the future.


From a writing point of view, you need characters the audience can empathise with (whether they are hated or loved is irrelevant), and that means that heroes must have flaws (see Steve Austin), and villains must not be entirely bad.


And now back then. Three letters conjure up some cringeworthy memories for me. U-S-A! U-S-A! When I was 10 I had posters of Hulk Hogan plastered all around my huge… wait for it… Stars and Stripes flag. What??? I’m not even American, yet I still jumped on the Uncle Sam bandwagon. That’s how much they shove it down our throats. You might say that things haven’t changed that much with the recent hate campaign against the French (La Resistance), and Hogan’s alter-ego, Mr. America. But things don’t seem quite as blinkered as they once were. The WWE even allowed the arrogantly clever Chris Nowinski to debate the nation’s penchant for war mongering, with muscle man simpleton Scott Steiner.


I just want the writers to be slightly cleverer about things. It’s not the 80’s anymore, and even kids seem slightly more clued up about who they like. They have to give us more than blind patriotism to keep us interested… and I think that nowadays they do.


Overall:

I will always enjoy slapping WrestleMania III into my expensive video recorder and marking out in a huge way for Hulk Hogan slamming Andre, but it’s definitely just a nostalgia buzz, because let’s face it I can turn SmackDown on every week and see the Big Show getting F-5’ed from Lesnar or F-U’ed from Cena.


I’m glad the 80’s and 90’s happened but I’m equally as pleased with the technically superior product we’re watching now.


Here’s to another 15 years!

Also this week i have put together MY TOP 10 POPS

Ever since first clapping eyes on the World Non-Panda Wrestling Federation, I've always been a sucker for a decent pop.


The hot-tag, the run-in, the falling-off-the-ring-apron; they come in many forms. So after pondering over some of the crowd reactions from yesteryear, I have compiled my own personal list of the top 10 pops I have witnessed as a WWF/E viewer. The countdown runs from number 10 all the way to the greatest pop of all-time!


(Note to A-Train fans. Your interest may very well drop off from here. Bye now!)

10) Steve Austin returns at Backlash 2000


At Survivor Series 1999, Steve Austin was suspended for 10 months for recklessly getting in the way of a moving car and rightfully so, says I. He was also injured too, but nobody knew about that.


Anyway, skip forward to Backlash 2000 and the Rock was feuding with Triple H for the WWF Championship. Due to face each other at the April pay-per-view, in typically clichéd style ‘the cards were stacked against’ Rocky. With Vince McMahon in his corner and son Shane as special referee, the matriarch of that particular family, Linda, decided to name somebody to watch the Rock’s back. As Gary Coleman was busy, she nominated Austin to get things done, much to the fans’ delight.


Austin blew up the D-X Express prior to the event but didn’t show at Backlash until he sauntered down the ring with chair in hand. Waffling Triple H, Pat Patterson, Gerald Brisco, Shane and Vince with a salvo of chair-shots, Austin brought the crowd to their feet, something which he notably struggled to do himself before standing above a fallen Vince to trash-talk him.


This was one of the last truly big pops that the poster-boy of the WWF Attitude era was ever to receive. After a post-match beer with the new champeen, Stone Cold didn’t appear again until four months later. After the initial ‘good-to-have-you-back-Steve’ reaction had died down, it was clear that the ‘Rattlesnake’ had grown decidedly stale. He was to turn heel later, before turning face again as he rode the crest of the ‘What?’ wave, but it was never really the same again.

Paranoid Rattlesnake
12-08-2003, 10:24 AM
9) Hogan/Rock at WrestleMania X-8


This was one of the wrestling industry’s truly great encounters, with it being the only one ever to produce a pop spanning the entire duration of the match. It was also the first wrestling pop ever to be heard in space.


Why? Well, Sir Hulk of Hogan made a triumphant return to the company he helped to propel to the forefront of North-American, British and Ugandan culture to clash with the Scorpion Rock in a bonafide battle of the ages. Widely-acclaimed as a six-star match (******), the contest saw some of the best posturing and pointing ever to grace the squared circle.


It was finished with the seventh-best People’s Elbow that the Rock has ever executed.



8) The Undertaker returns at Judgement Day 2000


Prior to returning to save the Rock from a D-Generation X/McMahon beat-down after his Iron Man Match with Triple H, The Undertaker was last seen as the demonic Dead man, leader of the Ministry of Darkness and scourge of all babyfaces. He had a pointy beard, long black hair and was really mean.


So when he appeared with no beard and long brown/gingery hair on a motorcycle before kicking some heel butt, the fans were pleasantly surprised and popped accordingly. ‘Hooray! He’s on a bike!’ ‘Gadzooks! He’s wearing denim!’ ‘Lorks a lordy! No more make-up!’ – the fans probably said things like that, one could imagine. It was something worth marking out for, especially as the Undertaker was a character most synonymous with my early years as a wrestling fan, as he was for many other people of my generation.


I think the reason that this moment sticks out so prominently in my mind is because of the rumours that ‘the gimmick’ will return in early 2004. There have been so many fans who have wanted the Undertaker to exhume the Dead Man role for years now and it looks like a genuine possibility at this moment in time, so I instinctively recalled what it felt to witness ‘Taker adopt a biker image. We were all so curious to see a more ‘real’ Undertaker in spring 2000 - and when we got one, it didn’t take long before we got bored of it.


I guess the moral to this rambling is this – never eat before you swim.



7) Edge & Christian/Hardy Boyz Ladder Match- No Mercy 1999


Think back to a time before Matt Hardy was the Sensei of Mattitude; before Jeff Hardy coloured himself in and got fired; before Christian had ‘peeps’ and before Edge did that ridiculous ‘face-plant’ move.


They were two fledgling young tag teams striving to catch a break and get over. So rare an occurrence is it in wrestling that you can precisely pinpoint the moment when someone ‘makes it’ in the business; for Test, it was when he got his foot spectacularly caught in the ring-ropes at WrestleMania X-7. For these four young bucks it occurred at the No Mercy pay-per-view on October 17th 1999, when they put on a breathtaking bump-and-stunt shenani-fest that made the fans sit up and take notice of them (more so in the case of the Hardyz) for the first time.


It makes for almost shocking viewing when you watch over the tape and listen to the sound of indifference that greets the arrival of the Hardy Boyz, who, in little more than a year after this match, had established themselves as one of the most popular tag teams in WWF/E history. It was not only the match itself but the reaction that the two teams received the next night on Raw that marked their arrival on the big stage; after a brief confrontation in the ring, all four milked the applause from an appreciative crowd who rose to their feet in unison. The heart-felt gratitude and respect that the fans gave the two teams was an all too rare moment of ‘realism’ in a business that frequently neglects it. What more could you ask for in a pop?



6) Vincent Roy McMahon


WWWF/WWF/WWE/XFL impresario McMahon is one of wrestling’s truly great ‘Pops’.


Yes, the self-proclaimed (i.e., no-one agrees with him) ‘Genetic Jackhammer’ has spawned three magnificent children. His son is Shane and, coincidentally, they share the same surname. Quite possibly the best suit-wearer that the business has ever seen, Shane has made many appearances on pay-per-view events, 74% of which have involved him either falling from great heights or being frowned at.


His daughter Stephanie, meanwhile, is just as successful. Having been involved in television for many years, she has written plenty of compelling and dramatic storylines. And when all of the inevitable flaws are ironed out, some of these may even feature on WWE programming before the end of 2005. Until then, fans will have to make-do with her understandably below-par offerings while she concentrates on her marriage to Triple H.


Vince’s third child is, of course, Ronaldo.



5) Mankind/Undertaker Hell in a Cell at King of the Ring 1998


It is all too easy to remember this match for Mankind being thrown off, or through, the cell, but I have always seen far more to this match than that.


Listen to the collective ‘OOH!’ as part of the roof gives way or the fevered anticipation as Foley teeters precariously on the edge of the cell. Take notice of the crescendo of shock as Foley staggers back to his feet and dares ‘Taker to meet him at the top for another duel or the almost-sympathetic groans as Foley is sent hurtling into hundreds of thumbtacks. This is more than the two-bump match that some make it out to be.


It also has Terry Funk losing his shoe.



4) Chris Jericho debuts in the WWF – August 1999


Harking back to the phenomenal pop that Chris Jericho received when he appeared on RAW for the very first time; it’s hard to imagine a more instantly impressive WWF/E debut than that. So there probably isn’t one.


The fans in attendance were all too ready to forgive the fact that the non-Sid ‘Millennium Man’ was unveiling himself in the middle of August, and cheered their silly little faces off when the lights dimmed during a Rock promo. After a quick blast of pyro, some music hit to accompany the Titantron video that boldly flashed the name ‘JERICHO’ for the world to see. The words “Welcome to Raw Is Jericho!” were uttered for the first time, and the rest, as they say, is geography.



3) Mick Foley’s first WWF Championship win –December 1998


Mick Foley was told he would never win the WWF championship and why should he have? Let’s face it – he was fat, hairy and ugly. But people liked him, and that’s what mattered. ]


But at the time of this title match on RAW in late 1998, WWF fans liked someone more than Foley – Val Venis. They also liked Steve Austin rather a lot too, so the crowd were only too happy to whoop with delight when Austin ran in to aid Foley as he battled the Rock and his evil Vince McMahon-led Corporation buddies. There was a second huge pop just moments later when Foley got the match-winning pin and subsequently captured the gold.


Nobody popped when he celebrated by saying: “Yo Adrian! Big Daddy-O did it!’ though. That was just plain silly.



2) Brock Lesnar/Big Show ring collapse – May 2003


This was the peak of a purple patch for Show, whose only previous experience with ‘patches’ in his WWE career had been those under his armpits.


Deciding that they’d had enough of their $10 million investment doing little else but clogging up the mid-card scene as he does his arteries with cholesterol, WWE suits decided to maximize his potential by getting back to basics; Big Show was to take some bumps whilst still being made to look legitimately unbeatable – and it worked. Suddenly thrust into a feud with WWE champion Lesnar, Show proceeded to take more bumps in the following twelve months than he had during his entire WWF/E career beforehand. Last week, he even took a back bump from a John Cena clothesline. Well done Paul. Well done.


With the 500 pound and 45 litre Big Show perched on the top rope during a match on SmackDown, Lesnar subdued him just enough to wrangle into position for a superplex. Hoisting Show over his head the two men went hurtling to the canvas, festooning the front row with an intoxicating mist of man-sweat, to a thunderous roar of appreciation and shock.


It made for one of the best in-ring visuals of modern times, barring the time when Lance Storm super kicked a midget.



1) Triple H's return from injury – January 2002


As someone that wasn't there in person when it took place, I'm in as good a position as any to comment on one of the biggest ovations that has ever been given to a wrestler with the word 'Triple' in his name.


The injury was well-documented - after tearing a quadriceps muscle clean from the bone during a May 2001 tag match pitting him and partner Steve Austin against Chris Jericho and Chris Benoit, he managed to struggle through the remainder of the match, which saw him take the Walls of Jericho from wrestling’s best beard-monger.


After an eight-month lay-off, the hype for Mr. H’s comeback began to escalate courtesy of some vignettes where he mimed to songs from Irish tunesmiths U2. With his vocal powers at their peak, he returned to cut a promo that was, quite literally, slightly good.


Incidentally, research since January 7 2002 into the phenomenon that was this insanely-loud pop for Triple H, has discovered the show was attended largely by disgruntled Internet smart marks who, in their prophetic brilliance, foresaw the slump in form that Helmsley was due to embark upon, and wanted to give him one last hearty cheer before they proceeded to rip apart everything he ever did thereafter.

ColdwaVer
12-08-2003, 12:09 PM
What a great first post. Welcome to a new era of TPWW!

*removes pants in celebration*

Big Fat Mike
12-08-2003, 01:29 PM
You mean your pants werent already off? :shifty:

ColdwaVer
12-08-2003, 04:35 PM
They wouldn't have been, but I had just got here.

Boondock Saint
12-08-2003, 05:08 PM
Good stuff. Brings back memories. :y:

Paranoid Rattlesnake
12-08-2003, 06:39 PM
Come on surely you guys think my rep deserves upping after that

Eunos
12-08-2003, 07:31 PM
Good very first post..

Better then..

"First Post i 0wn j00 l33t :Dx10"

Im already preferring this message board anyway.

Boondock Saint
12-08-2003, 07:59 PM
Come on surely you guys think my rep deserves upping after that


No doubt, just gotta figure out how it works first.

Spoon Bender
12-08-2003, 08:27 PM
Woah. Where am I!? Hey new smileys! :yes: :nono: :rofl: :ashamed: :heart:

el fregadero
12-08-2003, 08:30 PM
<font color=teal>Alan Cumming.</font>

El Santo
12-09-2003, 02:57 AM
:rofl:

Oooh. Nice smiley.

And swell post, Rattlesnake!

Rammsteinmad
12-09-2003, 08:40 AM
Good read. :y:

Paranoid Rattlesnake
12-11-2003, 12:27 PM
:D

Ronic
02-07-2011, 03:24 AM
Man...how wrestling went down the shitter since Paranoid Rattlesnake opened the Wrestling Forum board up with this topic...frig. =P

Fignuts
02-07-2011, 03:43 AM
What a fucking nerd.

Razzamajazz
02-07-2011, 04:01 AM
who the hell are most of these people that posted here

Disco Apocalypse
02-07-2011, 04:58 AM
That's some effort there

parkmania
02-07-2011, 09:56 AM
Was Paranoid Rattlesnake to eventually become thedamndest? Seems like they would at least get along with their love of A-Train.

MoFo
02-07-2011, 12:45 PM
tl;dr

Rammsteinmad
02-07-2011, 05:07 PM
Oh a RSM sighting from 2003! :cool:

thedamndest
02-07-2011, 07:16 PM
Was Paranoid Rattlesnake to eventually become thedamndest? Seems like they would at least get along with their love of A-Train.

No.

Volare
02-07-2011, 07:36 PM
God damn, talk about a thread from back in the day. Fuck I wasn't even apart of the site then.