Welcome to the very latest edition of the Phat Daily Column. I am your angry host, as always, Mr. Tito. Today, we'll discuss the very latest issues in pro wrestling and THEN, we'll have a video review of "Before they were WWF Superstars". Now that should be fun.
At my local Babbages, they sell used NES, SNES, and Genesis games. I was looking through the SNES bin, and I saw Saturday Night Slam Masters just sitting there. The game was by Capcom, and I remember Gamepro raving about the game years ago. So since the game was cheap, I figured, why not buy it? Man, what a disappointing game. Capcom tried to associate Street Fighter 2 into a wrestling game. Same fighting moves as SF2, only when someone's energy is low, you can pin them. You may also walk around the ring, whereas in Street Fighter, you can only walk back and forth.
But man, this is a sad game. Some wrestler jumped up on me and started biting me like Blanka did in SF 2. And you have ONE attack button for all of your moves. It reminds me of that Arcade game (Main Event Wrestling?) where you had a big round button called "Action" to fight your opponent with. The only thing really good about this game are the entrances. You get all kinds of lasers and lights, although every wrestler has the same entrance.
Speaking of SNES games, I haven't really given any thought or effort to review the wrestling games for that system. Plus, I have to download those roms to play the games, and take pictures too (DO NOT ask where I'm able to download those!!). SNES roms are over a 1 MB big, and on 56k, I can't just instantly download them. I do hope that I can review them this summer. Genesis basically had the same wrestling games, so we'll ignore that system. Plus, I'm a big Nintendo supporter.
Anyway, I lots to talk about, so on to the PDC!
-Looking around at the mark sites who love to take the Wrestling Observer Newsletter posts word-for-word without crediting Meltzer for the news or myself for compiling it every week, I stumbled upon a very pathetic way of reporting news. The note was from This Post, where I reported that the WWF signed Rene Dupre to a developmental deal. Now, who the hell is Rene Dupre?!? I actually investigated this, and provided a link for everyone to find more information on this new talent the WWF just signed.
But what did this certain poster, who we'll call "Ryan", say? Here's the exact quote from his post on how he reported the news that he stole without any credit: "Rene Dupre has recently signed a WWF developmental deal. It'd be nice to see guys like Big Vito and Christopher Daniel's get WWF developmental contracts also. They would obviously make a good impact on the Cruiserweight division." First of all, this guy assumes that everyone knows who Rene Dupre is. You ask any 50 wrestling fans, I bet that the chances of someone saying they know who or what Rene Dupre is are very slim.
Secondly, look at his ignorant comment about Big Vito and Christopher Daniels. What the hell? Is that opinion he's inserting in what should be a news post? That's a complete no-no, especially when it's a not-so-intelligent remark. He makes that comment assuming that Rene Dupre is just some geek off the streets, and that he can't, one day, become anything like his 2 favorite indie wrestlers. Does this "Ryan" guy know that Rene is just 18 years old? Does "Ryan" know about how his father was a pro wrestler, too, and that Rene might have it in his blood to wrestle? Does "Ryan" know that Rene has been training to be a wrestler for about 5 years now, despite the very young age? NO, ABSOLUTELY NOT!!!!
Rene Dupre has MORE potential than his two favorites, Big Vito and Christopher Daniels, whom he made ignorant comments about. Let's see here... Big Vito is a big headcase backstage, as he's known for sucking up to bookers, which he really did with Vince Russo and Kevin Sullivan in WCW, and not getting along with the rest of the wrestlers. He's had a few problems with some of the start up federations, too, as he wanted to get his way and probably overrating himself all the way. Christopher Daniels? Mr. Spotfest himself. Daniels lacks the size for the WWF to pick him up, and his wrestling ability isn't complete for the WWF to give him a chance. Believe you and me, the WWF has had a good look at Daniels, inviting him for several tryouts and dark matches. Sure, Daniels has spectacular moves, but he can have a tendancy to screw up spots. Plus, what good is he if he's in a match where he can't do spots?
Trust me, the WWF has an eye for all of the talent on the independent scene. They see that Rene has insane amounts of potential, great size, and a good mindset to be a pro wrestler, given that his father was a wrestler, too. The WWF has the BEST talent that North America, somewhat excluding Mexico, has to offer. Rey Misterio is probably the best piece of talent out there to NOT have a WWF contract, and that's going to happen very soon. Believe it or not, the WWF has all of the talent covered, especially from all of the United States independents. They look at wrestlers, such as Sabu, Sandman, Wreckless Youth, and many others, including "Ryan" 's favorites in Big Vito and Christopher Daniels, and they don't see the potential that an 18 year old Rene Dupre could give them in 3 years.
So, "Ryan", before you make a very stupid comment when reporting news you stole from this site, be sure to back up the comments you say or at least look up information on the wrestler you apparently had no clue about.
-And while we're on the subject of the "internet reporters", I want to repeat myself on the "reporters" having insider sources. First of all, nobody but guys like Dave Meltzer, Dave Scherer, Bob Ryder, Wade Keller, or anyone like that have insider sources. The ones mentioned have worked the business for years or actually worked for federations to get the good connections. Nobody in high school or attending college is able to compile such sources. Secondly, cut the crap about your claims on talking to independent wrestlers. What do they know? You say they talk to wrestlers on the WWF roster. Yeah right, what WWF wrestler would go spout of his/her complaints to some small wrestler in the independent scene? So please, stop it with your insider sources, stop making up news, and begin to finally credit someone for their news or work.
-It most certainly doesn't surprise me that rumor has it that Hulk Hogan used backstage influence to get the Big Show into the New World Order. But oh well. Let's look at it this way. The Big Show will always be shoved down our throats anyway, right? Ok, so why not in a decent angle or stable for a change? Plus, how good has the NWO been since their arrival? Ummm, not so good. The move to get Hall and Nash into the WWF has been a failure, although Hall has improved his attitude and real life problems. Big Show in the NWO makes more sense to me than any other WWF wrestlers joining the group since he has a past with the faction. I just hope they rename him back to the Giant, which I've been begging for ever since the WCW purchase. Maybe rename X-Pac back to Syxx, while we're at it?
My only real gripe about this video is the lack of major name talent. On the video, you'll see features on Billy Gunn, Hardy Boyz, Bradshaw, William Regal, Molly Holly, Stacy Keibler, Kurt Angle, Christian, Edge, Spike Dudley, and Lita. That's right, no Steve Austin, Rock, Triple H, Chris Jericho, Undertaker, or many other names who have a slighty larger star than the names mentioned. HOWEVER, it doesn't bother me that much because the smaller names are getting some much deserved attention from being on this video.
Let's briefly run through each wrestler or personality. Stacy Keibler's segment was very good. She had lots of home footage, from her early days as a child performing up, through her days as a Baltimore Ravens cheerleader, and then to her time as a Nitro Girl! Very informative on her life. She went into detail about how she landed the job in WCW, which is a major plus for this video. I remember first seeing her in the Nitro girl contest and saying "she's going to win it", based on her look at the time.
Kurt Angle's was pretty good. He had lots of past footage of wrestling, and lots of involvement from family members, such as a few of his brothers and his mother. He talked about his past and his relationship to his father. Kurt's father, if you didn't know, died while working on a building in Pittsburgh. Angle was looking out at the city of Pittsburgh, and pointed out two buildings. One with the pointy corners, which you can clearly see when you're in PNC Park, and the one his father died working on. Angle showed lots of footage of himself training for the Olympics, including running up those hills in Pittsburgh with guys on his back!
I really liked putting Edge and Christian together. In real life, although not brothers, they were good friends in school. They went to their old school, and walked around, remembering all of their good times. They went to a staircase section where they used to wrestle around with their friends. I laughed at how close Christian looks like all of his brothers. It was informative on how Edge and Christian began attending wrestling school, too. Good stuff.
Spike Dudley's was humorous, but like the others, very well done. He has a past of being a school teacher, and actually played linebacker for high school football. I liked how he couldn't resist becoming a pro wrestler, after being unhappy as an educator. The only strike against this one, in my opinion, was having no ECW footage to go along with this.
Lita was next... It had ECW footage, damn it! I agree with Lita... Just as her Miss Congeniality character was just starting to catch on, she was off to the WWF. In ECW, she wasn't so top heavy as she is today. Lots of older pictures here, but no real indication on how she got into pro wrestling. She said she toured Mexico for a while, and instead of showing footage of her from that, the WWF showed footage of other Mexican wrestling. Huh?
Billy Gunn's was probably the worst out of the bunch. Sure, I hate Billy Gunn as a wrestler, but just listen to him talk in this piece. He's very loud and has a non-stop smile whenever he's talking. Billy also would later mention that he now lives with his sister, for whatever that means. I thought when he was a Smokin' Gunn, he was married? Uh oh. Glad this video used footage of the Smokin' Gunns and other independent wrestling for Billy Gunn. Why no Rock-a-Billy footage?
The Hardy Boys was pretty much a recap of their video, which is one of the best WWF videos, ever. Like their video, it ran down their old wrestling gimmicks they made up as kids, and their relationship with their father. Then, like the video, it shows their early WWF careers. It's still good, but their Hardy Boyz video was just that loaded with information and footage.
Bradshaw's was pretty good. He grew up a wrestling fan, insomuch that the video actually had footage of him cutting a Hogan-like promo. He went over his football career, and then to his WWF career. He talked about how he fought the Undertaker on RAW one night as his early gimmick of "Justin Hawk Bradshaw", which the video showed footage of. Bradshaw showed a lot of love for what he does.
William Regal's segment could have been better. It had Regal walking around the Carnival he used to wrestle at in England, with hardly any other visual aids. Some pictures, yes, but not much in the way of videos. Oh yeah, no footage of him in WCW, either. It would have been classic if they showed him stretching Bill Goldberg in the match that basically got him shitlisted from WCW one time.
And finally, Molly Holly's was up their with the best. TONS of footage and pictures for her, including a very good description of her life. She talked a great deal about her family, growing up, and her close relationship with her father. She would describe how she got into pro wrestling, after short career as a gymnist and part time worker, and her segment would show lots of her early matches. These are bottom-of-the-barrel independent shows, folks, where the ring was basically set out in the outdoors with very little fans. After a while in the business, she went on to be hired by the Macho Man Randy Savage to help train his then girlfriend Gorgeous George train to become a wrestler. After becoming good friends with both Savage and Gorgeous George, she was then brought in as Miss Madness. They showed plenty of WCW footage of her there. I wish they would have showed one of her missle dropkicks. She had mean one back in the day. Eventually, the WWF would sign her, after WCW was just careless in appreciation of her. Remember those pictures I used to post of her training Torrie Wilson and another WCW valet to become a wrestler?
LAST WORD: Excellent video. Just loaded with lots of information on the midcarders featured on this video, aside from Kurt Angle, the 2 time WWF World Champion. Highly recommended, especially if you'd like to know more about the certain wrestlers mentioned. I'll give it an
AOL Instant Messenger: BookerTito - It's recommended that you send your questions or feedback as your first message so that it could be answered, instead of saying "hi", "hey", "what's up" or whatever else. Just get to the point, please, to make it easier since I get drilled with messages.
WRESTLEPALOOZA.com - Audio Show, Columns, News, and more!
KOLTERSHOCK!!! - A site that you shouldn't view with small children present!
X-Entertainment.com - One of the most entertaining pages on the net!
@That's all for today. I'll probably be back, tomorrow, with another WWF video review, and then some. Until then, why not chill???
Take Care, and Thanks for Reading.