GUEST POST: Never Mind the Majors, Here’s the Independents!

Never Mind The Majors? Seems a bit harsh...

Sidekick Andrew: Disappointment with the wrestling business. It happens to us all from time to time, but it seems to be pretty wide spread amongst internet wrestling fans at the moment. A combination of the usual post-Wrestlemania slump, the Orton-Christian title change and a general feeling of malaise are combining to make people swear off wrestling more and more. As such, we want to help people realise that there is much, much more to wrestling than the two companies you can see on telly. Independent wrestling might take a bit more effort to access, but it can reward you far more than another WWE PPV that you might well regret afterwards.

In the interest of fairness, I should point out that both Boss Lady Ray and myself feel that the WWE do plenty of things well – they have a style of show that works for them and they do big budget wrestling spectaculars better than anyone else. The current CM Punk story for example has been really popular here in the bunker. However, we do appreciate that a lot of people are feeling slightly burned out when it comes to WWE, and that’s where this series will hopefully be of use. (BTW, you’ll notice I only mentioned WWE in this paragraph. TNA is still pants)

As an introduction to this series, regular reader Charles Hahn has kindly written a piece about the subject for us. Make him feel welcome and comment afterwards will you? Cheers…

I mentioned a while ago that I wanted to do some writing about the wonderful world of wrestling, as I am very good at alliteration. When I mentioned that I had nowhere to put said writing, the fine folks at Wrestlegasm graciously offered me the chance for a guest post. I, being a fan of the site, immediately accepted.

That is when I realized that, while it is relatively easy to come up with a concept for a piece, it is very difficult to expand that idea into a full article. I thought about letting Ray and Andrew (super weird calling him that, I know him much better as apsouthern) that I was a big dumb lazy failure.

Then this happened:

Then, 2 weeks later, this happened:

Then as I was in the midst of writing this, this happened:

Now I don’t think I’m exaggerating too much when I say that these things caused the internet to LOSE IT’S COLLECTIVE MIND. While I believe the reaction was a tad much, I can surely understand the ever growing frustration with pro wrestling. I read things like, “That’s it, I’m taking a break from wrestling.” “I can’t believe I spend money on this.” And worst of all, “Wrestling sucks right now.”

I am going to be honest, that last one shocked me. That’s when I realized, the majority of wrestling fans see WWE as not the biggest company in the world, but as wrestling itself. They think it’s WWE or nothing. Well, I guess TNA is fairly visible, but who really wants to watch TNA?

Well I’m here to tell you something folks. WWE isn’t wrestling. If you are tired of Randy Orton, John Cena, and continual mediocrity, you do not have to give up on something you love.

One month ago (at the time of writing), I got up at 4:30 in the morning, left my house, and drove for 7 hours and through 6 states, to go to a tiny arena in Philadelphia. In that arena were 700 other people. They were there to watch pro wrestling. And they got it. They got 3 nights Of energy, emotion, and pure joy. This wasn’t WWE. This wasn’t TNA. This was a promotion called CHIKARA. If you read Matt Jones’ excellent post about the wrestling nirvana that was King of Trios, you know just how incredible it was. Hell, if you’ve read more than one post on this site you know how great Chikara is. I spent that weekend around people who were wrestling fanatics. I watched some of the best matches I have ever seen. I saw a man slam a giant. I watched people fly. I shook hands with legends. I saw people openly crying in the memory of a man they had never met before. Ultramantis Black said I was awesome. Yeah, it was amazing.

But this isn’t just about CHIKARA. This is about Ring Of Honor, the company that produced one of the most skilled wrestlers EVER. This is about Pro Wrestling Guerilla, a crew of fantastic Californians who haved cranked out years worth of consistent greatness. This is about any promotion that puts out great wrestling. This is about the guys who aren’t big enough, guys who don’t have the right look, but go out every night and do their absolute damndest to tear it up and give the people who love wrestling something to love.

WWE has been accused of trying to kill the word wrestling. TNA says “Wrestling matters,” and don’t deliver. There are people losing hope for something they have loved since childhood. But they shouldn’t.

Great wrestling isn’t hard to find friends. You just have to look a little bit harder.

Sidekick Andrew: And there you have it folks, if you’re fed up with the WWE and TNA models of professional wrestling, that’s perfectly understandable. But please don’t assume that all wrestling suddenly sucks. Independent wrestling is a very different beast. I usually compare the WWE/Indie Wrestling situations to the differences between seeing a huge gig in a stadium with an internationally succesful rock band such as the Rolling Stones, or seeing a small punk band in a tiny club. On the one hand you will get a more impressive show at the Stones gig, but you as a person won’t matter. At the punk show you’ll be able to interact with the band… heckle… maybe meet the guys afterwards – and they’ll be appreciative of each and every member of the audience.

Using Charlie’s piece as a starting point, we are going to be running a series of posts introducing you to a few indie promotions that you might want to check out. CHIKARA in particular got me through a period of disillusion with professional wrestling at the time Chris Benoit went a bit mental, hopefully at least one of the companies we profile can help you do the same. Keep an eye out later this week for the first interview in the series.


GUEST POST: King of Trios – A journey into the heart of hilarious high-flying wrestling

Sidekick Andrew: As we may have mentioned in passing briefly (here, here, here, and here for example) it was CHIKARA’s annual King of Trios tournament this past weekend. Now, being based on the slightly more civilised side of the Atlantic, it wasn’t possible for us to attend personally; but we did manage to secure the services of a special reporter for the weekend. Matt Jones (follow him on twitter, like him on Facebook and buy his t-shirt… something like that.) Enjoy the article: feel free to comment and be nice, or there’ll be trouble. Oh, and don’t forget to click the link at the bottom of the article and buy the DVDs – I’ve a feeling you won’t regret it

PS. Images are Matt’s own, unless otherwise stated

Riding in a cab through dingy South Philadelphia, it looks like somewhere to go if you had a deep-seeded desire to get mugged. For someone who hasn’t been to a major city in a while it looks like something out of a Batman comic.

But in this odd location a throng of very friendly strangers line up outside the reformatted bingo hall that was the ECW arena (now called the Asylum Arena). Walking in, the place is almost unrecognizable if you’ve only seen the dingy 1990’s videos of Tommy Dreamer or the Dudley Boys throwing each other off balconies, or of Chris Benoit breaking Sabu’s neck. Actually, given the claustrophobic camera work usually employed, the Arena is bigger than I expected.

Nonetheless, once the passionate fans of a promotion like Chikara file in, the atmosphere becomes absolutely electric. And make no mistake, Chikara’s fans are extremely passionate, and this is their biggest event of the year. To fudge a Hunter S. Thompson quote – In some circles, King of Trios is a far better thing than the Superbowl, the Kentucky Derby, and the lower Oakland roller derby finals all rolled into one.

The show opens with the lights going low and Chikara’s roster coming out around the ring- a tribute to the recently deceased “Sweet n Sour” Larry Sweeney. Some wrestlers like Mike Quackenbush and Eddie Kingston weep openly as the bell tolls ten times. Then the lights go out and a Sweeney video package plays on the big screen. When the lights come back on, a pair of Sweeney’s trademark sunglasses are in the ring, and the fans chant his name. A bittersweet beginning, to be sure, but absolutely necessary. Sweeney touched the hearts of fans and wrestlers alike in his time.

The mood picks up immediately as we’re thrust into the bizarre world of Chikara, where anthropomorphic ants have kickass wrestling matches with old timey baseball players and marching band leaders.

The contest between Team Osaka Pro (Atsushi Kotoge, Daisuke Harada and Ultimate Spider Jr.) and The Throwbacks (Dasher Hatfield, Sugar Dunkerton and Matt Classic) is almost strictly comedy. Kotoge and Dunkerton have a race which ends with the referee ordering free throws for Osaka Pro on an improvised hoop made of Dunkerton’s arms (Kotoge sinks his first, but misses the second). Classic, a send-up of old school wrestlers, admonishes his teammates for their comedy, insists they join him in Hindu squats and spends much of the match performing the Harvard step test à la Bob Backlund. Not to be outdone, Ultimate Spider Jr. gets into the act, using invisible spider webs to perform Irish whips on Dunkerton and Hatfield. Maybe not the most coherent wrestling match ever, but certainly one of the most entertaining spectacles I’ve ever seen.

On the other hand, the match featuring Mike Quackenbush, Jigsaw and Manami Toyota taking on The Maximos and TNA’s Amazing Red is almost all action. It’s a little odd seeing a female wrestler like Toyota battling men if you’re not used to it, but she fits right in and performs as well as, or better than, any of her male counterparts. After ten minutes of fast paced wrestling, Jigsaw scores an emotional win for his team with Larry Sweeney’s “12 Large” elbow drop.

The main event of the evening brings it all together in match featuring, unquestionably, the most mainstream performers of the weekend. Team Michinoku Pro is comprised of legends in the industry, particularly in their native Japan- The Great Sasuke, Jinsei Shinzaki and Dick Togo. Their opponents are Team Minnesota- Chikara regulars “The Anarchist” Arik Cannon, North Star Express member Darin Corbin and, in some ways the oddest name in the event, Sean Waltman, better known as X-Pac and performing for the first time since 1996 as the 1-2-3 Kid.

The knowledgeable Chikara fans give every participant a great deal of respect (which visibly moves Kid, who is seen wiping away tears). The match features not only exciting high-flying wrestling and solid mat action, but also some great comedy. In what stands as one of the most surreal moments ever, The Great Sasuke and Corbin engage in perhaps the first ever bout of slow-motion hardcore wrestling.

Corbin is well known for breaking out slow-motion in his matches, but seeing a legend like The Great Sasuke partake defies description. The effects are not limited to Corbin and Sasuke, either. Referee Bryce Remsberg and all the wrestlers on the ring apron get in on the act (Togo’s exaggerated, slow-motion cheering is a highlight), as well as the fans who chant veeeeeeeeerrrrrrryyyyy sloooooooooooooowwwwwwlllllyyy. Soon, Sasuke sets up Corbin on a chair and ascends to the top rope. Upping the ante on the comedy, Corbin’s teammate Cannon suddenly shakes off the slow-motion and screams “Darin, stop screwing around!” to huge laughs from the crowd. Corbin complies, and Sasuke crashes through an empty chair.

Slo-mo wrestling is the best wrestling.

In the end, Togo performs a beautiful flying senton on Corbin and scores the win for his team. The fans give a standing ovation to the participants, chanting all of their names at various times. An amazing match to end a top-notch night of wrestling, but the weekend is just getting started.

Saturday afternoon sees the Fan Conclave, Chikara’s equivalent of WWE’s fan festival Axxess. It’s here where it becomes clear what King of Trios really is- the Woodstock of independent wrestling. Legends rub elbows with relative rookies in the industry and all are available to the fans for pictures and autographs. They are unfailingly friendly, and happily chat with fans in an incredibly positive atmosphere (the exception being F.I.S.T.’s Icarus, the most hated wrestler in Chikara, who wanders through the crowd insulting everyone he sees).

There are numerous heart warming scenes. As my girlfriend takes video of the Ant Colony roaming through the fans, Ophidian of the Osirian Portal limbos in front of her and drops to the ground. He begins reading a note written on nice stationary that I notice begins “Dear Ophidian.” He sits and reads for a few minutes before dropping all of his serpentine movements and wrapping a nearby girl, presumably the author of the note, in a big hug.

And even aside from the chance to meet your favourite ants, snakes and (Ultra)mantises, there’s a lot going on. There’s a chance to commentate on matches, a contest where fans and wrestlers attempt to bodyslam Tursas (and the Colony’s Green Ant begins his transformation into Lex Luger), a dance contest hosted by the Osirian Portal, and a concert by Stan Bush. Nobody enjoys it more than “Rock and Roll Ring Announcer” Gavin Loudspeaker, who dances and thrashes around when Bush plays “The Touch.”

A few hours later, the second night of action begins, which sees surprises, thrilling victories and bitter defeats.

One of the most engaging contests of the entire weekend is the first qualifier for the Rey De Voladores, which features El Generico, Zach Sabre Jr, Marshe Rockett of Da Soul Touchaz and the BDK’s Pinkie Sanchez (who sports both some of the funniest facial expressions I’ve ever seen and some incredibly gnarly back acne). The referee for the match is BDK’s Derek Sabato who’s biased officiating allows Sanchez to eliminate Sabre and Rockett. Sanchez has the victory in hand when Chikara’s Director of Fun, Wink Vavasseur enters the arena. Wink forces Sabato to wear a standard Chikara referee shirt, symbolically stating that the BDK will no longer have their own referee. The crowd bursts into the biggest cheers of the weekend, so far, when Generico then drills Sanchez with his BRAINBUSTAAAAAAAHHHHH!!!!! (picture a top rope brainbuster, driving the opponent head-first into the top turnbuckle). Sabato begrudgingly counts a slow three, but he could count to 100 – Sanchez is out cold.

The BDK’s night doesn’t get any better as their team of Tim Donst, Jakob Hammermeir and Delirious, accompanied by Tursas, face off against the Colony. In a thrilling, come from behind victory, Green Ant completes his transformation into Lex Luger as he finally succeeds in bodyslamming Tursas (causing Gavin Loudspeaker to literally leap into the air with excitement) and forces Hammermeir to submit to a torture rack backbreaker.

Other notable contests include a heart-wrenching and hard hitting tribute bout to Sweeney by Eddie Kingston and Arik Cannon, a sensational main event where Team Michinoku Pro defeat Quackenbush, Toyota and Jigsaw, and the 1-2-3 Kid winning the other Rey de Voladores qualifier, setting up a match with Generico for the final day.

The crowd seems a little thicker on the final day, with more little kids. Or perhaps it’s simply that a new vendor is here selling a wide variety of wrestling masks, making them much more visible. In addition to the handful of youngsters with Fire Ant, Jigsaw and Osirian Portal masks from the first two days, there’s now a cadre of kiddies running around in brightly coloured Rey Mysterio masks. The cutest, though, is a father and son both in El Generico masks.

No time is wasted as the semi-final matches are held immediately. The match between fan favourites The Colony and The Osirian Portal conflicts the crowd. When the standard duelling chants of “LET’S GO PORTAL!/CO-LO-NY” begin, many fans are chanting both names. The Colony picks up the victory (via a spectacular top-rope neckbreaker) and advance to the finals.

The crowd is remarkably respectful and sympathetic. Handshakes before and after matches, clean breaks and stalemates are all met with cheers. The fans get into the show and cheer their favourites after losses as would little kids- they want to let them know its okay and that they still support them. Chikara is also likely the only place you’ll ever hear wrestling fans chant “SAY YOU’RE SORRY!” as they do during the Colt Cabana vs. Archibald Peck match. Hell, the fans even chant “Holy Poop!” instead of “Holy Shit!” because of the kids present.

The Colony’s opponents in the finals will be F.I.S.T., the 2009 winners, who manage to eke out a victory over Team Michinoku Pro. Chuck Taylor blinds Sasuke with baby powder and rolls him up for a pin (which one imagines was a real “mark-out” moment for Taylor). Icarus hate is at an all time high. One spirited fan in particular screams at Icarus to tap out every time he’s in a submission move, as well as when he’s performing a submission, or is just standing at ringside. He also earns several chants of “PLEASE RETIRE!”

The Rey De Voladores final is a hard hitting and exciting affair that has fans on their feet as Kid and Generico exchange deadly manoeuvres and nearfalls. After kicking out of a top rope version of Kid’s X-Factor, Generico hits the BRAINBUSTAAAAAAAHH!!!!! for the win, and the roof nearly blows off the arena. Kid is completely overwhelmed as fans chant his name. He takes to the microphone and pays tribute to Generico, Chikara itself and the fans. He notes some of the questionable things he’s done in his career, and the fans chant “WE FORGIVE YOU!” He announces that this will likely be his last year in wrestling, and that this may have even been his last match. If it was, he says, he couldn’t think of a better opponent or better fans to go out on. He’s given a long and loud standing ovation from the crowd, and then another from the wrestlers in the back that can be heard all through the arena.

For Sean Waltman, King of Trios meant redemption. After all, he doesn’t exactly have a great reputation among fans. It wasn’t long ago that he was so hated in wrestling that a term was invented to describe it (“X-Pac Heat” – when fans hate the performer, as opposed to the character, and don’t want to see him anymore; some fans say Icarus has the same sort of heat). He’s been seen as a talented performer who pissed it away with drugs and other poor decisions. He was that guy from the sex tape with Chyna, who politicked his way to the top of the industry with his Kliq buddies and never gave anything back- a selfish failure. Some fans were speculating, based on past behaviour, that he wouldn’t even show up for the event.

But at King of Trios a strange thing happened: the man became the Kid, and the kid became a man. Waltman busted his ass in three great matches. He put over his opponent in the ring and on the microphone. He paid tearful tribute to the fans and the company. And if that was Sean Waltman’s last wrestling match, he certainly went out with a lot of class.

That’s a hell of an accomplishment for someone who’s name has so often been used in the same sentence as “Chyna’s gigantic clitoris.” Well done, Kid.

Speaking of redemption, that’s what the King of Trios final is all about. After losing in the finals of the tournament last year, and then losing Green Ant to an arm injury, 2010 was a dismal year for the Colony. The crowd (other than a handful of 3rd row, die-hard F.I.S.T. loyalists) desperately want the Ants to win this one.

After all the comedy and Lex Luger parodies of the weekend, the main event is old school wrestling booking at its finest. F.I.S.T. ground the Ants early on, with Chuck Taylor bashing Green Ant’s arm with a chair during a fracas. That arm becomes the target and F.I.S.T. pound on it mercilessly. The Ants rally, however, and take advantage after Taylor’s baby powder to the face backfires and hit his teammate Johnny Gargano. The match goes back and forth many times, manipulating the crowd with multiple false finishes, bringing their excitement to a fever pitch. Finally, after twenty minutes of tremendous action, the Ants unleash unheard-of offense – a top rope version of their Antapault move. They launch Green Ant ludicrously high into the air for a splash on Icarus that wins them the match and the tournament.

The crowd explodes into cheers: justice has been done. But it’s about more than that. The fans have been feeling the wrestlers’ pain all weekend. As mentioned, they’ve offered sympathy to favourites like Team Quackenbush, The Spectral Envoy or Team Michinoku Pro after their in-ring losses. Moreover, they’ve offered their sympathy for real life losses, as in Kingston and Cannon’s tribute match. After all that, it’s not just the Colony (and Generico, for that matter) who deserve this victory- the fans do too.

After the show is over, there’s one thought that sticks out in my head- Monday Night Raw is going to suck in comparison to this. I’ve been to a show that was family friendly, yet engaging for fans of all ages. A show that saw long suffering heroes finally vindicated as they faced impossible odds. I saw one of wrestling’s pariahs redeem himself, and several legends put over the next generation as they wind down to retirement.

For fans like me, watching the WWE can be an angsty experience. We fret and we fuss over who deserves better, who’s holding the young generation down, who could help the whole company out if they would just be booked to show more weakness, etc etc. These concerns are miniscule, if they exist at all in Chikara. It’s a whole different animal. It’s ridiculous and fun and over the top, but very old school as well (not just Matt Classic either).

Wrestling fans, you owe it to yourselves to check out Chikara. There’s no better wrestling product for kids, but between the humour and the action they can appeal to anyone. Give them a chance. Maybe we’ll see you at King of Trios next year.

Sidekick Andrew: All three nights of King of Trios 2011 are available at – in just another example of awesomeness, the DVDs were released within 24 hours of Sunday’s final! We’ve ordered our here in the Bunker, we suggest you do the same.

Wrestlemania 27 Predictions: Guest predictions by Adam off of the internet

[em]Sidekick Andrew: By now you have hopefully seen Boss Lady Ray’s predictions, helped along by her friends and family, and mine should be up tomorrow. However, sometimes two just isn’t enough – you need that extra third element to spice things up a bit. Think of how much tastier a ham, cheese and pickle sandwich than one without dead pig involved… or how much more enjoyable the CHIKARA King of Trios tournament is than the old Tag World Grand Prix. Anyway, in order to balance things out for this special occasion we thought we’d add some knowledge and decorum into the blog in the form of our favourite guest blogger Adam (who wrote a great piece on his memories of attending Wrestlemania here)[/em]

Done in the order I think the card is playing out

Daniel Bryan vs Sheamus – Sheamus has gotten the last few pins on Bryan, most notably three weeks ago to win the title and then again at the go home Raw in a tag match. Logic would dictate that Bryan should get the win here, since he has no heat going into this match and he’s a babyface at Wrestlemania. However, I don’t see that happening. Bryan will put up a good fight, and if they give this match some time I could see there being numerous near falls, but ultimately, Sheamus gets the clean win here. I don’t think this is bad thing. Sheamus is a superstar so he should have a title. Taking the title off him so soon only devalues everyone around. If this were a match with Sheamus challenging, everyone would pick him to win. I think this is just WWE throwing us a swerve because we think that Bryan should get some heat back. He will get heat back though. It’ll be a strong match and Bryan can move onto a feud with someone else.

The Corre vs Big Show/Kane/Santino/Kozlov– This match will be more comedy than anything else. Since it’s had minimal build I don’t think too much analysis is required. All that should be known is that The Corre have been getting some heat lately, winning titles and such. Since it’s Wrestlemania let’s just say that Santino gets the pin on Heath Slater and everyone does the trumpet.

Dolph Ziggler & LayCool vs John Morrison, Trish Stratus, & Snooki – Hands down the easiest match on the card to call. Snooki gets the pin on Layla after Vickie Guerrero botchs some interference and Trish Stratus nails Layla with a Chick Kick, all the while Dolph is taken out by a Starship Pain. Although many view this match as a garbage match or a cool down for the fans, I disagree. 5/6’s of this match can work their butts off. As such, I don’t think having two of these in a row is a bad idea. Also, this match goes on this early so that the media involved can get their pictures and stories about Snooki uploaded on their blogs before 9 PM.

CM Punk vs Randy Orton – This will be the first hour main event and honestly one of the harder matches to call. Since this is the first match in the feud, logically you have the heel win it. That way, you can gimmick up future matches and draw some money. Of course, that was the case last year with Punk/Mysterio and Rey went over in the first match. It also lead more matches. And although Orton may have gotten some heat by taking out all of the new Nexus, Punk seemed to disassociate himself from that on the last Raw (seriously, is that stable done now? I know Husky Harris is working under a mask and new name.) Also, Punk seems to have gotten the most heat by a) costing Orton at Elimination Chamber, b) the whole bus thing, and c) leaving Orton laying during the opening segment of the go home Raw. Although I wouldn’t book it this way, Orton nails an RKO out of nowhere and wins clean.

Cody Rhodes vs Rey Mysterio – While I just above said that faces win at Mania and Rey has been in this position before, I think Cody Rhodes needs to win this match. His character is just beginning to take off and a loss here could kill any heat he has. He’ll win with a knee guard to the face and his feet on the ropes. As long as they give this match time, it could be a real classic. The build has been that good.

Edge vs Alberto Del Rio – This is the second hardest match on the card for me, because there are so many booking possibilities to come out of it. Del Rio has been white hot except for the last few weeks where he’s been doing some jobs to Christian. The addition of Christian to the feud has many buzzing about what will happen. I think Del Rio wins the title due to something Christian does. Most likely he tried to stop Brodus Clay from interfering and inadvertently hits Edge, leading to some kind of Del Rio rollup or whatever. There will then be a rematch on Smackdown where Christian will overtly interfere, claiming discrimination over his victories of Del Rio leading up to Mania, and not having a slot on the card. With any luck this will propel Christian into the main event. Still, to salvage the Del Rio character (since he’s been jobbed so much lately) he has to win the title at Mania, if just to appease the oh-so-lucrative Mexican market.

Michael Cole vs Jerry Lawler – For some crazy reason this is the most well booked match on the card. Although it has some crazy heat to it, there’s no way this will be a technically good match. So this is the cool down for the fans. Also, the second easiest match on the card to call as everyone wants Jerry Lawler to win. And Lawler will win because he has gotten no heat for almost a year on Cole. Very simply put, Swagger pisses off Austin, Austin stuns him, Cole runs away, all the Divas led by Eve throw Cole back in the ring, piledriver, fist drop, pin, Divas surround Lawler.

Undertaker vs Triple H – Kudos to WWE for even making the outcome of this match a question. Although I didn’t like the early booking of this feud, the go-home Raw with Shawn Michaels’s promo additions have made this the must see match of Wrestlemania. They’ve subtly changed the Undertaker into a cocky being who just assumes he will win at Mania. They’ve also somehow made Triple H the underdog in the match. We also know about Triple H’s legendary ego and he is now an executive for WWE. So the stage is set for the streak to end.

Except it won’t. Undertaker wins after kicking out of a Pedigree and hitting a second Tombstone. The Triple H of today is a different man than the one of eight years ago. He knows that there is no way the locker room would respect him if he ended the streak. And he is a big proponent of keeping the streak. Watch The True Story of Wrestlemania. He says so himself. And I think both men know that if the streak were to end, it would be for someone who could use the win, not a made man like Triple H.

John Cena vs The Miz – Also, kudos to WWE for actually making this match debatable too. I wasn’t sure if this would go on last or not, but I can’t help but think that Undertaker isn’t 100% and the match won’t be too hard to follow. Plus, with the Rock involved and back, this should go on last. Now, Wrestlemania really never ends with the heel standing triumphant, so I can guarantee that the last shot of the show will not be Miz with the title. But the Rock’s addition makes this hard to pick. After last week’s Raw, there is no chance that Cena and Rock make up to screw the Miz. The Rock will be the last thing we see when the PPV goes off the air. Under any other circumstance I’m picking John Cena, but for some reason I’m going with my gut and saying that The Miz will find a way to retain the title. The best idea to me is that there is a ref bump, Alex Riley goes to hit Cena with the title, Cena blocks it, hits Miz with the title and gets the pin. Rock comes out, orders a restart. Cena is so incensed with the Rock that Miz hits him with the SCF, but Cena kicks out. Riley gets involved again, but Rock hits him. Cena gets mad that Rock is in his business again, goes after Rock, Rock hits a Rock Bottom and Miz gets the pin.

How’s that for drama with the Rock being on Raw the next night?

Guest Post: Wrestlemania Memories

As it’s both our blog birthday week and Wrestlemania week, we’re trying to lavish as many posts upon you as possible. Luckily for us, our favourite guest blogger Adam offered to write us a Wrestlemania themed post. How could we refuse? We defy you not to read it and get loads more excited for Wrestlemania. Whether you were there in person or watching on TV, why not tell us your own Wrestlemania memories in the comments box? We’d love to hear from you. Enjoy! – Ray


My love of pro wrestling really knows no bounds.  I’m at a point in my life that I don’t even hide it anymore.  Granted, I don’t yell “Suck it!” or wear old NWO berets (nor any wrestling merch other than a “Death Rey” shirt), but I don’t shy away from admitting that I usually watch Raw live, Smackdown on DVR, and will always buy the Rumble and Wrestlemania.  However, for my life long love of wrestling, I really haven’t seen too much live.  I remember going to a WCW house show with a friend in my hometown of Asbury Park, NJ, when I was 4 or 5, but it wasn’t my idea and I really didn’t know what was going on.  What I do remember though, is that we sat ringside, my friend loved Sting and looking up the time frame, I probably saw a Sting/Flair classic but I honestly can’t tell you. I remember I went to a WWF house show in 1995 at the Meadowlands and thought it was cool that a character that hadn’t debuted yet was working the house show (in this case it was Louis Spicoli’s “Rad Radford” character.  Owen and Yokozuna lost to Shawn and Diesel in the main event).  In college I went to the Smackdown after the 2004 Royal Rumble where Eddie Guerrero was named #1 contender for the WWE title and I went to Summerslam 2005 where Eddie Guerrero lost a ladder match for custody of Rey Mysterio’s son.  Oh, and this happened.  I went a taping of Raw at Madison Square Garden where Kofi jumped on Orton, Piper was awesome, but overall I hated it, as exhibited in this poorly written argument.  Finally, I just went to my first CHIKARA show, and well, that ruled.

Of course, I’m forgetting one live event.  The second live wrestling I ever attended and first I actually was aware of.  I attended Wrestlemania XI, live from the Hartford Civic Center.

Allow me to educate those who are not up on their Mania history.  Wrestlemania XI is on the short list of “Shitty Wrestlemanias.”  The main event involved former New York Giants Linebacker/NFL Hall of Fame/Crack addict/current registered sex offender Lawrence Taylor taking on Asbury Park, NJ native/current cadaver Bam Bam Bigelow. In addition to this bad idea, this Mania also should be held accountable for the crime of getting Steve “Mongo” McMichael interested in professional wrestling, as he was in LT’s  corner.

The setting is important as well.  The Hartford Civic Center, although the former home of one of my great loves, The Hartford Whalers, is a decrepit arena in a shopping mall.  It was also about a three hour drive from where I grew up.  Keep in mind that Wrestlemania X, in addition to being one of the better Manias, was only a 90 minute train ride from my house.  But who cares!?  I was 11 and this was Wrestlemania!  Surely my innocence and general wonder would make this a memorable trip!  Right?

Well, not exactly.  For starters, this trip was a weekend alone with my dad.  Now, I’m not going to get too deep into how I was raised, and rest assured I don’t have any specific issues with my father now, but it should be stated that even at that young age I was conditioned to know that one-on-one time with my dad was stressful.  We also don’t have any common interests and he has a habit of making us leave early whenever we go to sporting events/movies/school plays because he gets bored.  So here’s an entire weekend, in an awful city, dedicated strictly to professional wrestling.  The possibility for a problem was high.  And I remember a few.  Most occurred at the Fan Fest (screw AXXESS, it will always be WWF Fan Fest to me).  My dad admonished me for talking to a stranger randomly, even though it was in actuality Jim Cornette just walking the floor.  I also was frequently (all my adolescence actually) told to “fix my jacket” because I had an oversized New York Knicks Starter jacket that would hang off me because we were indoors and I was overheating.  And by “told” I mean “forcibly yanked at the collar and yelled at” because I looked like “(I) was in a gang.”  Keep in mind, 11 year old Adam looked like this.

But hey, I’m getting ahead of myself.  The earliest memory of Wrestlemania XI weekend was when we checked into our hotel and my dad made his first of many observations that adult actress Traci Lords (most famous for lying about her age to start her career early) was on our floor of the hotel.  My dad speculated that she may have been a celebrity guest of the event, but I’d counter that with it was far more likely that she was there to score some coke off Shawn Michaels.  I mean we weren’t at an ECW show, amIright?  After we checked in we went for lunch at some local spot and Captain Lou Albano walked in, which even my dad recognized from the Cyndi Lauper days.  After walking around for a bit we decided to retire for the night where it was stressed upon me to keep my voice down because we were in a hotel and people are sleeping.  Plus, we had to wake up at 7 am to for the Fan Fest!

Ok, here’s the thing about Fan Fest.  It gets packed and quickly.  It’s also huge.  So if you want autographs, you have to pick your target early and go in that line.  I learned that one the hard way on Day 1.  So basically I just walked around a bunch with my dad and took in all the sights.  From what I hear, AXXESS serves as a defacto WWE museum with some autograph sessions and games and such.  Fan fest did not have that.  It had an Undertaker set with the hearse, a ring you could jump around in (which I did, and that ruled), some kids games (one was a dunk tank that I was totally at when Todd Pentigal ran over during a taping of WWF Mania and dunked on Doink, so I was totes on TV!), and LOTS of merchandise booths.   I left with the following loot:

Shawn Michaels Tee Shirt– It was kind of sparkly and had his picture on it.  I wore it to the Fan Fest the next day and was one of the first people in line for his autograph.  He remarked “Nice shirt” to which I replied “Thank you.”  Later that summer some kid at camp called me gay for wearing a shirt with a man on it, and although I told him to shut up, I can’t recall wearing the shirt much after that.

WWF Pogs– I won these at a Pog Station.

Undertaker Pendent– It was a heavy, die cast metal pendent shaped like the Undertaker.  That became my bling for the remainder of 5th grade.

Lawrence Taylor Hat– My dad just bought this for me, despite how my feelings on the main event were conflicted.  Hey, gotta stick up for the hometown, right?  The hat did come in handy the next morning though, when bright and early we saw LT in our hotel lobby and he signed my program for me.  My dad was actual proud of how I let him finish a previous conversation and politely asked Mr. Taylor for a signature without any prompting. This encounter swung my favor to Mr. Taylor.  Seven years later I waited on Bam Bam Bigelow at the Applebees I was working at and told him the same anecdote.  He told me I made the right decision.

Various Autographs– I really don’t remember who I got except for Shawn and LT.

Something Tatanka related.

Foam Title Belt– This requires a bit of explanation.

Regardless of time period, I am fairly new to the internet.  My father was a computer programmer, but it also stressed him out enough that it made him sick.  As such, our home wasn’t wired for the internet until about 2001.  So there was no way I’d of been a smart, internet wrestling fan then.  I didn’t read the Apter mags or dirt sheets.  Christ, I didn’t even know WCW existed at the time.  I remember being in the hotel on Saturday night, my dad put on TBS because wrestling was on his channel surf, and I had NO IDEA who anyone was (yet oddly enough, I now remember it was a Four Horsemen promo I saw.  There must have been one of those green screen logo promos.)  Hell, I thought the Undertaker had some reality to him, even though I knew it was all scripted.  So yea, 11 year old Adam was not the discerning wrestling fan that I am today.  However, which foam title belt did I insist on buying?  Do I even have to say it?

Yes, I had a play Intercontinental title.  The “worker’s” belt.  Why root for Big Daddy Cool and The Undertaker when I can watch Jeff Jarrett and the 1-2-3 Kid?  And yet, I hate TNA now…

Oh, and I loved that foam belt.  It was probably my favorite thing ever for years after the fact.  But the smarkiness didn’t stop there.

For starters, I was a huge Owen Hart fan.  Always have been, going back to his days teaming with Koko B. Ware to form High Energy.  And I also found his heel turn in 1994 to be well reasoned, and needless to say, popped huge when he beat Bret at Wrestlemania X.  I also popped huge when he won the tag titles with a mystery partner (who I correctly guessed was Yokozuna.  I thought I was so smart, but looking back on it, they were practically slapping you in the face with the answer when they ran a bunch of Leslie Nielsen “Where’s Yoko?” spots.) So fine, that’s not unusual.  But I pretty much rooted for ALL heels.  We’ve already established I bought a Shawn Michaels shirt.  He was the heel in the world title match against Diesel.  Let’s look at the whole card and I’ll tell you my preferences.  Winners are listed first.

1) The Allied Powers (Lex Luger & the British Bulldog) vs Jakob and Eli Blue– Who cares?  I guess I liked Matilda, Davey Boy’s pet bulldog, so let’s give my pick to the faces.

2) Razor Ramon vs Jeff Jarrett (IC title)– I liked Double J’s country song “With My Baby Tonight”, and the woman next to me was a big Razor fan.  Since I have to be a combative little shit, my pick was J-E Double F, J- A- Double R- E- Double T.

3) Undertaker vs King Kong Bundy– My swag picked the Undertaker, but I did have an affinity for the Million Dollar Corporation (Dibiase is another favorite).

4) Owen/Yokozuna vs the Smoking Gunns (Tag Titles)– This match involved my favorite wrestler taking on Billy Gunn.  ‘Nuff said

5)    Bret Hart vs Bob Backlund (special guest referee Roddy Piper)(I Quit Match)– Not only did I root for Mr. Backlund in this, I brought a sign that said “BRET HART QUIT.”  Let me repeat that: I WAS 11 YEARS OLD AND ACTIVLY ROOTING FOR BRET HART TO QUIT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE RING.  An adult actually gave me a snide comment before the show when he read the sign.  I remember being pissed that Backlund lost even though I never actually heard “I quit” out of the mic.  One of the few times I have questioned Roddy Piper’s judgment.

6) Diesel (with Pamela Anderson) vs Shawn Michaels (with Jenny McCarthy) (WWF Championship)– Well my pick is obvious, but to further elucidate what a little shit I was, I had some beef over the booking of this.  The prize for winning the 1995 Royal Rumble (in addition to the title match) was that Pamela Anderson would accompany you to the ring.  I don’t care how Cool Bid Daddy was, or how many Hearts the Kid Broke, Anderson was a prize fairly won by Mr. Michaels.  She should have accompanied him!  It’s in her contract!  Even if Jenny McCarthy is hotter!

7) Lawrence Taylor vs Bam Bam Bigelow– I was bribed into rooting for the face.

Final count: 4-3 heels (with bribery involved, so who’s really the heel in the main event?  Plus, he’s a sex offender!)

My love of the law didn’t stop there either.  R&B group Salt-N-Pepa were brought in to sing “Whatta Man” to LT on his way to the ring.  The band Fishbone was advertised to perform the “America the Beautiful” before hand.  I know this is true because there is no way I’d imagine that, especially at 11.  For whatever reason, they were replaced by Salt-N-Pepa.  In retrospect, this is the superior choice.  But I remember thinking that was bullshit.

Needless to say, the combination of wrestling and my insufferableness made my dad get bored and he went for a walk around the arena.  He returned about 20 minutes later.  But not empty handed.  No, he returned with a WWF Ice Cream bar.  I don’t think I need to explain that this is the most delicious food ever created.  I was perturbed I couldn’t find one all weekend.  I guess my dad walked around until he found the one stand that had it, which may be one of the nicest gestures anyone has ever done for me.

The night didn’t stop after the last bell either.  Walking back to our hotel there was one final prize.  Loitering in front of our hotel were some punk teens.  In the street was a private limo.  One of the teens took a pebble from a potted plant and threw it at the limo.  The limo stops short, two GIANT bodyguards come out, beat the crap out of one of the kids (smooshing his face in the plant), and then go back in the limo.  This took place over 20 seconds.  Probably the best action of the night.  My dad still tells that story.

I don’t have too many good memories of growing up.  That’s not to say I have all bad memories, but the memories of pure, unbridled happiness are few.  Maybe I was always just a contrarian little turd (read: BRET HART QUIT) or maybe it was something else.  That’s not for here or now.   Wrestlemania XI is a good memory.  I guess that’s the moral here; that even the worst Wrestlemanias are a pretty great time.  It’s corny to say, but Wrestlemania is special.  And not because the marketing machine says it is, or its four hours now, or the Hall of Fame.  It’s special because we want it to be.  Everyone wants it to be special, so we work hard to make it memorable.  I want more Wrestlemania memories, even if I never watch another day of professional wrestling again in my life.

The author tweets about dinosaurs and hockey over @adamrjones24.  Please pity him.

Guest Post: The Chaperone – Everything you need to know

Wondering if you want to watch Triple H’s new movie The Chaperone? Disappointed it’s not showing in your local cinema? Just can’t wait until it’s available on Blu-Ray and DVD? (I don’t think you’ll be waiting long.) Fear not, dear readers. We’ve asked our old mate Adam to help fill you in. Enjoy and be warned, there are movie spoilers, just in case that kind of thing is important to you. – Ray


Just as the Great One has made his return to our television screens, the Laugh Twins of the legendary LOL, Wresslin’ are blogging about Earth-53  Dry your eyes.  This time we’re doing it right.  This time we’re feeling alright.

One of the major benefits of living in large markets (in my case, the largest market) is the fact that everything comes to you.  Thus, I had the treat of seeing WWE’s latest motion picture, The Chaperone, during its limited (in so many ways) release.

I have seen a few of the WWE films before, but strictly on TV.  Both The Marine and The Condemned I caught on cable one day and enjoyed.  I streamed Behind Enemy Lines II of Netflix one lonely day and I have plans to do the same for Knucklehead.  Hell, I even sat through Wrong Side of Town, which despite not being a WWE film, does star both Rob Van Dam and Batista (!!!).


I have not seen Legendary or Marine 2 because I suppose I have some modicum of dignity, and for whatever reason I am yet to see See No Evil, which I hear is a perfectly competent slasher flick.  But a family movie from WWE?  Staring none other than Paul “Triple H” Levequez?  That I gotta throw my cold hard cash down for!  Just look at the poster!

Seeing it in print shows how dumb a ring name Triple H is. You can put “The Rock” on a movie poster. You can put “Stone Cold” Steve Austin. Hell, you can do “Rowdy” Roddy Piper on a movie poster. Those all imply certain traits about the actor and what he’ll bring to the role. But what the Hell does “Triple H” mean?

The movie poster should tell you everything you need about the film in 3 seconds.  You see a shot of Batman standing like the icon he is?  You know it’s a badass Batman movie.  Two beautiful people in a tender embrace/kiss?  Romance.  What about a film where someone stands with a quizzical “Oh Brother!” expression?  Well that one is a little harder, isn’t it?  But you know™ what the general rule of thumb is?  It’ll be stupid.

Now as what can we tell from The Chaperone’s poster?  We see that there is a school bus with THE CHAPERONE painted one, implying that this will be a school trip the chaperone chaperones.  There is a little girl driving a bus with a crack in the wind shield, most likely due to the fact that she shouldn’t be driving at all (ergo- hijinx shall be ensuing for our merriment!)  Two figures with guns are on top of the roof of the bus, implying that they are chasing something related to the trip that the chaperone is chaperoning.  Also, the man on the top left has his nose bandaged and looks a tad haggard, so perhaps he got this expression from the aforementioned hijinx.  And of course, the largest figure in the foreground: our assumed protagonist (and since the name above the title is the man in question, it should be a safe assumption for this poster.)  He is just taking it all in, as if this is just another day in his hectic life.  He also has $300 out of his front pocket, whose purpose cannot be determined from this poster, but it’s a safe assumption that the gun toting roof riders are probably involved with that aspect.

So now that we were able to decipher all this information from the poster, the question persists; does this all happen?  Well…..kinda.

The trailer should illuminate the plot for those who need more information.  I’ll allow those of you who haven’t seen it yet to take a minute and check it out.

This thing is all over the place.  Is it this heartwarming story about a man who spent some years in prison and wants to get to know his daughter?  Is it a bank heist movie about ex-cons fighting over money and making it personal by dragging in a determined man’s daughter?  Is it a movie about kid power and the whacky adventures they get into?  Well, yes.  It is all these things.  It is all these things and less.

Plot Synopsis (Spoilers): So Trips plays Ray “Ray Ray, no Just Call Me Ray” Bradstone, a former wheel man for some bank robbing group in Lafayette, LA.  This will be the only mention of the character’s name in this review, since what fun is it calling him “Ray” and also the “Ray Ray” thing is a running gag that falls flat the entire movie.  The film starts when The Game is about to get released from prison.  You know™ he’s been in there for a long time because his beard is really long!  Anyway, he claims he’s a changed man because some radio host (played by a poor man’s Kathy Bates, yes that exists) who preaches positive thinking helped him by letting him call into her show all the time.  As soon as Trips gets out he is greeted by his former crime partner, Laroux (French for “The Street”) played by indie darling Kevin Corrigan.  I love it when actors who may not be superstars but have credibility do this blatant paycheck jobs.  Either they don’t care or the direction is terrible, but they always ham it up.  Think Robert Patrick in The Marine or Willem Dafoe in Spider-Man.  It’s a really a thing to behold.

Anyway, Laroux shows up in Corvette or something because I don’t know anything about cars and sorry internet, I guess that makes me teh ghey butt sechs for not being all crazy car boner, but I just don’t pay attention to that stuff.  Still, it was red and a two seater, so you can probably pick up a Shawna at a tanning salon with it or something.  Where was I?  Oh, right, The Chaperone.  We’re only at the first 3 minutes here, folks.  So Laroux offers to pick up Hunter, but Triple H is all like “Well I wanna drive because I did that for the gang” and Laroux is like “Sure thing, He Who is That Damn Good!”  So he gets out, Blondie takes the wheel, locks the doors and speeds off.

Yes, the ex-con who has totally changed steals a car within 1 minute of being released from prison.

To further cement how he’s totally changed, The Leader of Evolution totally transforms into Hunter Hearst Helmsly and goes all clean shaven.  Then he shows up at his ex wife’s house wanting to see his daughter (who has insane eyebrows, but I won’t make fun of her because she’s a little kid.  Still, she was not very good) and she’s all like “I hate my criminal dad” and that’s that.  HHH then follows her to school and unsurprisingly gets shot down again when he runs into Lisa Simpson’s voice actor and get’s roped into chaperoning a field trip.  Get it?  It’s like the title of the movie.  So yea, he’s doing this stuff but he also needs to find a job because he has to prove how he went straight.  He goes to an auto body shop and doesn’t know what hybrids or smart cars are!  He applies to work in kitchen and its all vegan and organic!  What happened to the world?  Can’t criminals who rob banks and then get put in jail for seven years ever catch a break?

Finally, his crappy apartment catches fire and H. Hearst. H just laughs.  This is the dialogue (I’m paraphrasing)

Police: Something funny about fires?

HHH: Oh, it’s not funny “haha”  More of funny in an ironic way.  Everything I own was in that apartment.

Police: Oh, I’m sorry man.

HHH: It’s ok.  Wasn’t much anyway.

This is pretty much every scene with HHH in it.  He just gets all sentimental and forces depth wherever he can.  This will become obnoxious in the numerous “You gotta believe me!” scenes he has with his daughter, or whenever he waxes nostalgic.

Anyway, down on his luck Cerebral Assassin decides to do another bank heist.  He’ll be the wheel man again.  The robbers decide to wear masks which resemble George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, and Condoleeza Rice (it’s funny because the robber is a white man and she’s a black woman).  Some weird bank teller starts laughing at this conundrum which is probably the only scene that passes for legit comedy in the movie.  She also has a call back later in a Stockholm Syndrome scene.  During the robbery (which happened to be across the street from his daughter’s school on field trip day) HBK’s Job Boy decides to quit the robbery.  He takes the keys out of the engine, throws them in a bush and walks to the tour bus.  When the cops come after the alarm the robbers all flee, the one with the money running towards the bus, gets tripped and the money ends up with the bags for the trip.  He then gets hit by a car.  I LOL’d.  Kevin Corrigan and the other guy on the poster steal a car, crash into a dirty diaper truck, see HHH on the trip bus, and follow him all around New Orleans in search of the money.

This is where HHH starts laying down the law with the kiddos and imparts his prison justice on them.  There’s one ginger kid who somehow has access to fireworks that really chaps Hunter’s ass.  They also discuss Sun Tzu’s Art of War, which is odd considering how the kid is 13 and clearly a dipshit.  Well, the latter sort of makes sense.

HHH knows a lot about dinosaurs, breaks some guys nose in the bathroom while letting them keep their guns, and is finally starting to make some progress with his daughter as he’s helping set her up with some boy she likes.  He gets permission to take her off schedule and takes her to a CD store which makes her really happy because he’s heard of some fake musician named “Kellen Smith” that is like, so deep and NOTHING like Britney and the rest.  This scene is stupid, because no 13 year old knows what a CD is, let alone do stores exist for them.  I work in the music business and have no idea what a CD is.

The cops find the keys to the get away car and find Mr. Stephanie’s prints on them.  He’s going back in the clink!  But first he has to give back Laroux the money, but every time they try to something interferes.  Finally they just say “fuck it, let’s kidnap his daughter because, yea” and they do that.   HHH gets them back, but not before a short fight scene with some hired goons and a near cemetery shootout.  Daughter goes back to the school group where Lisa Simpson (she was totally playing an adult Lisa) is all excited that she’s ok and she won’t get fired because she let an excon on the field trip.  Still, Daughter wants to make sure her Daddy who she now wuvs  isn’t brutally murdered, so somehow some nerdy kid with an iPad is able to track the 1998 King of the Ring’s iPhone (yes, they use those words) with some app.  Because that exists and Apple is so known for information sharing software.  They then cause a diversion with the firecracker ginger Art of War kid, sneak out, steal the bus, and start driving to Mardi Gras Village to save He Who is That Damn Good.

Lisa Simpson is totally getting fired for this.

The kids do some mischief and have headsets that came out of nowhere.  They cause a diversion and in the ruckus, The Man Who Held Back Booker T and Rob Van Dam’s iPhone falls out, somehow calls that radio show he likes so much (  It’s touch sensitive) and they know who the caller is despite not hanging up after 30 seconds of dead noise.  They immediately recognize that a crime is going on, call 911 despite not knowing where the call originated from, and the cops come just in time to save the day.

Oh, and The Game’s ex-wife (surprisingly not played by Joanie “Chyna-Doll” Laurer) totally dumps her nice new doctor boyfriend to reshack up with the man who “abandoned (her)” and caused “tears for months.”


Analysis: As you can see, the trailer was not far off.  It strives very very hard to be a touching movie about redemption, but ultimately it fails.  Why?  Because HHH’s character never really changes.  We only see him as a good guy, and the one flash back shows him as a loving father.  So basically, it was the rest of the world that had to change and accept him.  That’s not an arc.

As for the bank heist stuff- it’s a convenient (and I mean convenient the way everyone just happens to be in the right place) way for the HHH character to prove his love and such.  There’s very little thrill in it, because again, HHH is constantly in control of the situation.  Even when he has a gun pointed at his face there is no danger.  I know that’s what I should expect, but his ability to manipulate the situations where he should be powerless just take away from any drama.  But of course, he is The Game, so what should I expect?

The whacky kid adventure?  Outside of the daughter there is actually very little of it.  Which is strange, because the theater had about 15 people in it, all composed of little kids (no older than 10), their parents, and 3 assholes in the back who watched it ironically.  I think if it was more kid adventure it would have worked better movie.  It at least would have been more fun.  Sure, it would have had to flesh the kids out more (although there were a bunch and they all got a line here and there for the most part, you can distill them down to 5 archetypes.

1)    Daughter who speaks like an adult

2)    Daughter’s crush who is also mature because he READS BOOKS (but came off more like a kiss ass)

3)    Mischief Making Ginger

4)    Overachiever who wears a suit when he doesn’t have to

5)    Prissy Vapid Normal Girl

That was it for the kids, so as you can see, no one is really like that likeable.  Hence, why the kid adventure fails.  It also fails because of Hunter.

As it stands now, The Chaperone was just a vehicle for HHH to be all Triple H.  That is, he was just better than everyone.  It even imparted various life lessons from HHH, which is to say, according to this movie, hybrids and organic food is for weak fags, and all kids need some strict discipline.

So who’s to blame for this war crime on film?  Well, I don’t think HHH is blameless, especially given some of the promotion he did for it.  I read this one interview at ComingSoon.Net where he said “WWE Studios–I’m not sure how they acquired the script–but they sent a copy of the script to me and I thought it was good, I enjoyed it. It obviously needed some changes or whatever but I enjoyed the script.”  He’s not wrong to say it needed changes, but it’s a little bullheaded to state that.  Given how he tries to infuse so much melodrama into every other scene, this whole movie sort of rings as a huge Triple H vanity project.  Which it is, to an extent.  But you don’t get taken seriously as an actor (nor as a film studio) if you’re essentially just playing yourself.  Acting is, after all, the art of becoming another.

Still, he’s not the main one to blame.  No, the major culprit is one Lynda Vincent.  At first I was skeptical of this woman.  I thought it was an obvious rib or pseudonym for the McMahon family, but alas, looking at her IMDB page, she has in fact been working in films since 1986 (on such masterpieces (no irony) as Over the Top, License to Drive, and Monster’s Ball).  And what did she do?  Take a look.

Yes, she was the camera loader!  It was her fault that this piece of crap got recorded!  Now you know where to send your hate mail.

Score: 1 Triple H Water Spit out of 5

LOL, Wresslin’ is considering coming back to Twitter to continue our shenanigans.  Follow us @LOL_Wresslin and bug us to TweetNA again.  Feel free to follow (alliteration!) the author @adamrjones24.  He is older than 24, it’s just his lucky number.

GUEST POST WEEK: joey’s raw (lite)

Hello! Me again. I know, I know… It’s guest post week, not Joey week but hell I just love Raw so much *sniff*. On Monday night I snuck into the WRESTLEGASM bunker, threw on Andrew’s dressing gown and snuggled up to Ray’s lifesized cut out of CM Punk to watch one of the best episodes of Raw in a long while.

The show kicked off with the esteemed Chairman of the Board Mr McMahon, who strut his stuff down the ramp and the crowd went wild. I honestly believed that it’d be the end of the whole Mr McMahon angle, and I don’t get why they make him a villain when the crowd clearly love him. I think Vince has become such a legend, it’s not needed for him to be anything different. Vince took the mic and explained that Bret Hart made a bad decision in firing Barrett and not giving the NXTers contracts and that, even though he’d be been bashed about in a limo, he should’ve turned up. God, what a tough boss… I ring in sick if I have Hayfever! Vince then gave the words that both he and I have been waiting for; “Bret, YOU’RE FIRED!”. Oh hallelujah. I was grinning almost as much as Vince was.

If you’re happy and you know it clap your hands… *clap*

Vince then went on to explain that there was to be a new GM who preferred to remain anonymous for the time being but how will the GM communicate I hear you ask, well, I’m glad you asked because the idea is that the new GM would send an email to Michael Cole and Cole would read it out. Everytime the GM sends an email there’s a loud ding. Interesting fact, fact fans, my iPhone message tone is exactly the same as the email ding sound. The result? An entire episode of Raw where I checked my phone without fail everytime forgetting it was on the TV. Boo. Before McMahon could continue his smugness, the ding went off and the first big announcement was made. ALL the NXTers would be given contracts. You know what that means, right? JUSTIN GABRIEL. ON RAW. FOR THE FORESEEABLE FUTURE. Evil Justin Gabriel is SEXY.

McMahon then went to leave the ring but Sheamus came down and had a few words to say. He had the gold over his shoulder but something was missing. He just wasn’t happy. He looked sad, but why?

Turns out Sheamus didn’t agree with the way he won the title. It was dishonest and he didn’t get it fair and square and, well, he just couldn’t carry the burden anymore. PSYCH. He was totally playing. He then went on a rant about how he didn’t give a damn how he won because he would’ve won anyway. He thanked the NXTers for their hand in helping him win but said that he could easily take the NXTers on. Not to be outdone, John Cena camp to the ring and had a few words with Sheamus. Sidenote: has anyone notice how Sheamus is rocking the Jedward hairstyle? Cena thanked the new GM saying that now the NXTers were officially superstars, they were guaranteed to turn up (yeah, tell that to half the roster who never get a bloody look in) and that meant he could get his revenge.

Then he told Sheamus that he has a rematch clause and he wants to use it there and then. Sheamus, obviously, refused and demanded Mr McMahon kick Cena out of the ring. Then I got a text… wait, no, it was another anonymous email. Cole took to the mic and read out the email “would you like the enlarge YOUR penis by 4 inches?”. I joke, of course, it’s PG. I just hope Cole didn’t give his bank details to a Nigerian Prince in return for “millions of dollars”. Anyspam, Cole announced that Cena and Sheamus WILL go head to head in the main event but there was a twist. There was to be a special enforcer, a man everyone listens to, a man who is wise and strong…

No, not him, silly.

Mr McMahon! With that all three left the ring to go get ready.

Next up we had another chapter in what is looking set to be a great feud. I’ve never really rated Evan Bourne but he’s really impressed me and I can see him rising up in the ranks. Before the match began, Jericho took to the mic and explained that Bourne is a fly by night wannabe and he is sick of being pushed around and that if he doesn’t win tonight. He will quit! Oh dear, could this be the DOWNFALL of Jericho? See what I did there? Because Downfall is the name of the gameshow he presents…

The match was really good and Bourne and Jericho gave it their all. Bourne has got some really cool moves and the hurricanrana he does is just great. Also is it just me but are Bourne’s tights like, really tight. I get the clues in the title but you can see EVERYTHING. Bourne pretty much had the upper hand but after a few near falls and two Walls of Jericho, Jericho managed to avoid a flying Air Bourne and hit the Code Breaker for the win. After the match it seemed like Jericho wanted to make friends.

I cannot wait to see how this one develops!

We then went backstage where Vince was on the phone to the anonymous GM. He said it was a great idea but he doesn’t like being surprised. Wow, his birthdays must be fun. He also revealed that the new GM had “complete and ultimate control”. Uh-oh, that’s never good.

We then zoomed over to Ted DiBiase’s dressing room where Virgil was waiting anxiously. DiBiase came in and explained how sorry it was and how he didn’t mean to upset Virgil. Virgil accepted the apology and then DiBiase fired him. Guess he just can’t catch a break. DiBiase then explained Virgil had been “upgraded”. I figured that maybe DiBiase had stabbed Virgil with a USB wire and then tried to download the new IOS4 so that Virgil could multi-task, but no. It was Maryse. Then came the most painful moment in a long while… (around the 0:55 mark)

Staying backstage, Josh Matthews guests at that time were Natalya and The Hart Dynasty. They were rather pissed off that Bret had been fired and Natalya was pretty much doing all the talking. I liked that. Natalya said there is no doubt this time that Vince screwed Bret and that her match tonight is dedicated to her uncle. Aw, sweet. She then said that “these Harts won’t stop beating”. Um, okay. Then a huge limo pulled up. Who could it be?

After we went to what seemed like 6 minutes of adverts, we came back to Natalya making her way to the ring. Tonight she finally got to wrestle in a singles match against Tamina. I think both these women are fine wrestlers and I haven’t been this excited about the Divas division since the days of Trisha and Lita. The mixed tag at Fatal 4way was outstanding so I had high hopes for this one and it started of great but a few minutes into it the NXTers invaded. Barrett took to the mic and said that the group wanted to apologise but Tyson Kidd didn’t give him the option and flung himself over the ropes. That was a mistake as then the NXTers beat the holy hell out of the Hart Dynasty.


The NXTers got into the ring and we went to ANOTHER break. Once the show returned all the NXTers were stood in a line and I noticed that Justin Gabriel’s trunks seemed to have got lower. I don’t know if that’s possible. He’s like reverse Simon Cowell. Anyway, Otunga took to the mic and explained that they’re really sorry and they did what they did through love of the WWE and now they have their contracts, they can get back to normal. Heath Slater took to the mic and I zoned out because I just kept thinking about how small his face is. I think he said something about the attacks not being personal and they had a few people to apologise to. My interest perked up when Justin Gabriel took to the mic. I know, I know, his mic skills sucked but he did pretty well. Gabriel apologised to Bret and the Hart Dynasty and said they hope that Bret is doing well. He said that the attack before on Tyson Kidd and David Hart Smith was self-defence. I agree although I think I’d agree with anything Justin said.

Darren Young then got on the mic and apologised to Cena. He FINALLY referenced the fact that he looks like a “black John Cena” and that he truly believes Cena will win the title back. I hadn’t ever noticed before but Darren Young has a REALLY gay voice. Like REALLY. Skip Sheffield was next up and he apologised to the WWE Universe. He says he misses the days when the fans were behind him and shouted “yep yep yep”. I hate to be a party pooper but I don’t ever remember the fans doing that. I don’t think they did either so they just booed. Awkward. He said he hopes everyone can forgive and forget. I don’t know if he’s referring to the attacks or just the entire first season of NXT.

The scary guy of the group, Michael Tarver, was next up and he basically apologised for scaring kids. I have a feeling he does that quite often. He then said that he is sorry to his own children and then named them all. He has like 50 kids. He said that they shouldn’t do what he does which I guess makes him a hypocrite. Finally we ended with Barrett who said that the reason he did what he did was out of loyalty and respect for his fellow NXTers. He then referred to them as a “Nexus” which I have a feeling is their new name. Barrett also said that as well as his contract, his PPV title shot was also reinstated. He warned Sheamus that he will put a target on him just as easy as they did Cena. They also had new music. If you’re interested it’s “We Are One” by 12 Stones.

We then had a snoozefest that was a match between John Morrison and Zac Ryder. If you read my blog about Tag Teams then you’ll see why this was boring. Morrison is good at what he does; he just needs a better gimmick. The whole “Shaman of Sexy” thing is getting old. Morrison won the match with Starship Pain which Cole called “gorgeous”. OK…  Then Morrison did a weird celebration with his rookie Eli Cottonwood.

We then went back to the backstage area where John Cena was flagged down by Josh Matthews who asked what Cena thought of the apology. Cena said that his career and body were put at risk so it was, actually, personal so the apology wasn’t accepted. I bet Darren Young is crying into his John Cena pillow now. Mr McMahon then interrupted and said nobody had any excuses tonight and that it would be a fair match. I somehow doubt it.

Then there was a mixed tag between Great Khali & Eve Torres vs Primo & Alicia Fox. It was pointless, I don’t want to recap it so I won’t. There.

Up next we had Randy Orton coming to the ring. Orton was annoyed because he felt the NXTers ruined his opportunity but he said that he accepted their apology. How nice. He then said he wanted Barrett to win the title… wow, Orton is so sweet! He said once Barrett wins it he’s going to beat the crap out of him and take it off him. Oh. Maybe not so nice. Orton then glared down the camera and I did a sex wee.

Before Orton could continue, The Miz came out. Two sexy men in the same ring? WOO. Miz says he also hears voices in his head and they’re telling him that he’s bored of Orton getting title shots. He then said that he wants to be the first man to ever hold the US and WWE titles at the same time. Orton looked like he wanted to snap him in two but Miz had something to tell him. He said he had an industry secret to tell Orton. What could it be? Is he the new GM? No. He just wanted to tell Orton that HE IS THE MIZ AND HE IS… gonna kick Orton and then beat on him. He did just so but before Orton could retaliate, Miz ran out of the ring and then Edge ran in and speared Orton. Then he did that weird pully thing at his hair he does, like doing the spear REALLY takes it out of him. It’s stupid.

Has anyone notice that Edge is looking kinda frail lately? Hope he’s not ill or anything.

Then we finally got to our main event and Mr McMahon was up first. Rather than his usual swagger, he opted to run down the ramp. Must’ve been running out of time. Cena was pretty much beaten up throughout the entire match but managed to get into SuperCena mode a few times. McMahon pretty much did nothing as Special Enforcer but kick it back with the time keeper. Dude gets paid for this! After what was actually getting to be quite a good match the NXTers all invaded once more and Sheamus ran for the hills. Everyone basically ran away leaving McMahon and the NXTers. McMahon took to the mic and invited the Severe Seven into the ring and was all smiles. He explained to everyone that he was partly responsible for what had happened and that he should get some credit. What’s this? Is McMahon is cahoots with the invaders?! He also said that next week the new GM will reveal something big. There was a weird atmosphere though and the NXTers got bored of McMahon’s boasting. So they gave him the evils.

At first they laughed it off and Vince said they scared him for a moment but then they circled him. What happened next was shocking, brave and bolshy TV and a big surprise considering the PG era. Vince was absolutely annihilated, I mean really. After a pretty harsh clothesline from Sheffield, Barrett scooped Vince up for The Wasteland. It was a sickening thud and it sounded like every bone in Vince’s body had been snapped. This was then followed up with a 450 splash from Gabriel. The men left the ring and the crowd were left in shock. A cameraman then abandoned post and ran in the ring and screamed “WE NEED HELP IN HERE! WHERE’S STU?! STU!” I don’t know who Stu is, but I totally want to find out.

We were then left with the harrowing final image of McMahon curled up in pain. What will happen next? Well, we’ll have to find out next week won’t we!

GUEST POST WEEK: the mentor steps in

Hello, Readers!

Your friendly neighbourhood Honourary Dean of Wrestlegasm, (fake) Matt Striker, here. You don’t hear a lot from me, but I guarantee you that since Ray offered me this post, I’ve been working hard behind the scenes, mentoring her daily on how to be a better blogger and just generally how to be a better person. That Andrew undermines my good work at times, but I’m certainly making progress and doing the best I can when I’m not jumping back and forth across the Atlantic.

Unfortunately, my excellent Life Coach methods don’t seem to have stretched to Ray’s organisational skills yet. SIGH! She may have done well to get this week’s Guest Post Week off the ground, but she also completely forgot to arrange for someone to recap the incredible Fatal 4-Way PPV. It was an awesome show which really should be recapped for posterity. To quote Ray herself “It was a show for fans of wrestling, not ‘wrestling fans’.” I taught her everything she knows. Anyway, I received this string of text messages earlier today……

Matt Striker is a fine gentleman and never one to leave a lovely Welsh daffodil in distress, so here I am. By the way, she insists I call her that. She was getting upset that I was constantly calling Layla my ‘Little English Muffin’. Relations between the English and Welsh aren’t rosy, so I obliged. After all, a sobbing student is an inefficient student. Eat your heart out, Will Schuester!

You may have spotted in that run of cell phone messages that today is my 36th birthday. Happy birthday to me! I am a little annoyed at having to work on my birthday, but Ray and Andrew are throwing me a party in the Wrestle Bunker later tonight. I’m told Ray is doing a special rendition of To Sir With Love, so it’s all good. Besides, Ray had to work on her birthday last week, so I guess it all evens out in the end.

Incidentally, as a birthday gift I gave Ray a DVD of the greatest movie ever made – Wise Guys. This comedy gold stars Danny DeVito and……moi! Yes, yours truly was a thespian back in the day, treading the boards of….errrr…… Newark alongside one of the finest comedy actors of our time. Don’t believe me? Here is the beautifully besuited seven year-old Matthew Striker acting everyone else off the screen.

Great days! But that’s enough about what a stupendously good-looking boy I was (and still am). We should get to Fatal 4-Way, which took place last Sunday liiiiiive on payyyyyy per viewwwwww. I LOVE saying that!

The man who appears on our paychecks stepped out to introduce Drew McIntyre, one of the brightest young stars in the WWE. Drew was set to face Kofi Kingston in an attempt to claw back his Intercontinental Championship. These two worked beautifully together, playing with our emotions at each of the several broken pinfalls.

The match took a bizarre turn when the official in the ring was knocked unconscious and Drew insisted that terrified Smackdown GM Teddy Long step into the ring to officiate. Teddy pulled on his striped shirt but refused to play Drew’s dastardly game to help him win. While the sinister Scotsman scolded Teddy, the suspended Matt Hardy showed up to cause a disturbance. A Twist of Fate later and The Chosen One found himself under the weight of Mr. SOS long enough to lose the match.


“Say what you want about Drew’s attitude, it’s McIntyre’s acumen which cannot be denied.”

Following this we had a Divas Fatal 4-Way match, which was a little tricky to commentate on while being stuck next to Jerry Lawler. I persevered, however, mentioning possible submission tactics, winning strategies and so on whenever I could get a word past King’s creepy squealing. Never let it be said that I, Matt Striker, objectify our wonderful Divas. Vickie Guerrero, on the other hand, is another story. Raaaawwwwr!!!

The ladies worked solidly throughout, leaving the vixen-like Alicia Fox our new Divas Champion.

A surprise to most, I presume. I’ll bet that Zack Ryder is wishing he’d stuck with Ms. Fox now. Maybe her success would have rubbed off on him. Associate yourself with successful people and you too will be a success. Just one of the many life rules I’m trying to get Ray to live by.


“Ohhhhhh! The jumping bomb angel double stop!”

My commentary colleagues may have scoffed when I used this to comment on a Gail Kim move, but they’re just jealous of my superior wrestling knowledge. Bow to me, peasants!

I was all ready to call the Smackdown Fatal 4-Way match when Chris Jericho appeared in the ring. Ray, Andrew and myself have all been noticing how very lost Jericho’s been since moving to Raw. The Mental Mastermind should come back to Smackdown, where he flourished. But it’s not for me to suggest draft picks to my superiors. Jericho’s soliloquy (read some Shakespeare, kids) was followed by the appearance of one of the most fearless high-flyers we’ve seen in the WWE in some time – Evan Bourne.

The two had an enthralling match which made me miss being in the ring myself. I believe we’re witnessing what could be a spectacular run for Evan Bourne. Wait! I got another text message from Ray…. here we go:

That pretty much covers it, right?


“Shine on, Evan Bourne. Shine on.”

Said in celebration as an almost surprised Bourne pulled off what could be the greatest win of his career to date. Mark it in your planners, folks. Or whatever piece of modern gadgetry you rely on to function.

After this impromptu union of young buck and experienced veteran, we moved on to the much anticipated Smackdown Fatal 4-Way match. As you can imagine, any match involving the devilish CM Punk, the surprisingly powerful Rey Mysterio, the accomplished Jack Swagger and the might of Big Show could be nothing but epic.

The match ran along with the momentum of a runaway freight train until Kane’s path of rage lead him to the PPV arena. Nobody wanted to feel the wrath of the Big Red Monster. Luke Gallows sneaked out to help CM Punk run out of sight, while Kane picked off some of the other competitors. All this commotion allowed the miniscule Mysterio to trap Jack Swagger and apply the 619 before hearing the 1,2,3. Anything is possible when you have faith, little one. Yes, that is another one of Ray’s morning mantras.


“CM Punk is Mansonian, he’s Koreshian, he’s a master manipulator.”

….because I love the idea of stumping you with adjectives you’ve never heard before.

Shall we take a break from the 4-ways and move to the US title match? I won’t spend too much time on this Miz/R-Truth match. It’s almost time for my first glass of birthday champagne and I need to finish writing this. Miz retained his belt. End of match analysis.


“We call that move the kitchen sink, ’cause there’s really nothing left after that!”


REALLY! Now keep that champagne on ice. I’ll be right with you.

The Miz’s victory was followed by a family affair. The Hart Dynasty took on the Usos + Tamina in what turned out to be one of the sleeper matches of the night. I was particularly impressed by Natalya and Tamina’s performances. They’ll certainly shake up some of our more….. modelesque Divas, given the opportunity. It was the ladies, in fact, who finished this match. Natalya pinned Tamina following a tumultuous Tornado Clothesline, to keep the tag belts in Hart hands.


Actually the most awesome things to come from my lips during this match were my intermittent Jimmy Snuka impressions. I’m amazing! Listen back again if you get the chance.

Before we move on to the main event, a quick POP QUIZ. Who is the most handsome man in this picture?

I'll give you a clue, it's not anyone in the direction I'm pointing.

OK, on to the Raw Fatal 4-Way match between…..DAMN! Look at the time! My perfectly spherical champagne bubbles are diminishing by the second. I can cover this match in just one sentence, which is how I so cleverly described it at the event:

“It’s Cena’s psyche vs Randy’s shoulder vs Sheamus’ rage vs Edge’s experience.”

Those vicious NXT graduates began attacking everyone watching in the locker room, which distracted those in the ring. The mob invaded the arena and I made a very quick exit. My ribs have taken quite enough punishment for the time being. Once the chaos began to subside, Sheamus took his opportunity and snuck back to the ring, making the pin to be the new WWE Champion. John Cena was crushed.

Poor guy!

I don’t know what happened after that. I was long gone. And I should be gone now. I hear music. Byeeeeeee…..