The Biz: Praising 101- What I Like about Professional Wrestling Today

Nick Perkins

Nick Perkins talks about what he actually likes about professional wrestling.

 

 

Hiya wrestling fans! It’s Thursday, which means TNA Impact is on. Annnd, I’m probably not going to watch it. I’m just not in the mood. I bought volumes 1 and 2 of the Complete Summerslam Anthology. So, I guess I got the Incomplete SummerSlam Anthology. Whatever. I finally get to see The Undertaker vs. Brian L-, er The Undertaker. Not to mention Razor Ramon vs. Diesel. Usually if there’s a match I want to see, I’ll Youtube it, but if it’s one I really want to see and enjoy and, gasp, study, I’ll try to buy it. None of that probably means anything to you, dear reader, so we’ll move on.
Last week, I talked about my earliest childhood memories of wrestling, and urged all of us to focus on what we liked and remembered about professional wrestling. I also said that this week I was going to speak, or write, about what I like about the current wrestling scene. Lord knows we need some positivity on the Editorial Board, after reading Eric’s and Madden’s articles.
First of all, I liked this past week’s Raw. All of it! I thought it was drama filled, had great promos, a few surprises, and some pretty good matches. I even liked the closing Randy Orton/HHH segment. Yeah, it was the PG version of Austin/Pillman, but who cares. It had me, the wrestling fan, waiting to see what happened. I didn’t even think about changing the channel, which was the point. I also liked the Cena/Edge/Big Show/Vicki segment. It was hokey, but I laughed a few times. Edge and Cena had a few funny comments and funny faces. They’re very good performers. Big Show is also doing a nice job in his role. Even Vicki is doing well. The “backstage video” of her and Big Show was funny. When Vicki swatted Show on the butt, I literally laughed out loud. I think it will be an interesting match at Wrestlemania, if not a technical catch-as-catch-can masterpiece.
JBL as Intercontinental champion intrigues me. I’ve always liked JBL. He’s on par with Bischoff in ’97, HHH in 2003, or Jeff Jarret pretty much his whole career, save recently, as someone who the people just don’t like. Their hatred goes deeper than just booing a heel in a wrestling federation. We legitimately don’t like John Bradshaw Layfield, which means he’s doing his job. And I bet if he ever decided to turn face, he could do so with ease. I think the Intercontinental Championship is a nice fit around JBL’s expanding waist-line. Plus, it will be nice if the Intercontinental Championship were actually defended at Wrestlemania, instead of having the champion compete in the Money in the Bank match for a better title.
HBK and Undertaker continue to prove why they’re the best in the business, even still. Their exchange on Raw gave me goosebumps. When Shawn Michaels interrupted ‘Taker as he was delivering his “Rest in Peace” line, it literally made me “ooh” out loud, or “OOL,” for all of you textaholics. Their match at Wrestlemania will be the best match on the card. The story is great, and the two can perform like none other when they so choose. Think the end of the WWE Championship Elimination Chamber match with HHH and Taker, and multiply it by ten. I’m incredibly excited about this match. Eric whatshisname asked why everyone was excited about this match. He said that they’ve fought each other before, and have crossed storyline paths multiple times. That’s the point guy! The point of the storyline IS their history with each other. And need I remind us all of the classic last few moments of the Royal Rumble a few years back that involved Taker and HBK? The two are the best, and they’re going to prove to everyone one more time why, at Wrestlemania.
Chris Jericho is my second favorite wrestler/performer on Raw, trailing only behind Shawn Michaels. I was stoked when he re-debuted. I loved when he won the World Heavyweight Championship, and he continues to impress me even more every week. I don’t know where his story is going, whether he’ll be fighting Flair, Austin, Hogan, Lawler, Rourke, Koko, Honky Tonk Man, Hacksaw, or someone else. Whoever it is, though, the match will be something to behold. I’m excited to see where his storyline is going, which is the point.
Over on the Smackdown side of things, most of the storylines kinda overlap between Raw and the Friday Night Flagship, as I like to call it. Actually, I’ve never said that before in my life. It just sounded cool. Whatever. The one story that is Smackdown exclusive though, is that between Matt and Jeff Hardy. Never before has a brother vs. brother feud seemed so personal. Even Bret and Owen Hart can’t compare. I think it has to do with the fact that there’s a lot of honesty in this story. Matt HAS worked hard to get what he’s gotten, while it seems Jeff has made many mistakes yet still continues to remain in both the fans’, and WWE’s good graces. It must take a lot for Matt to admit that his career has been average, while Jeff’s continues to skyrocket. The fact is, both Hardy brothers were made for professional wrestling. Both of them were born performers. And both of them continue to grow as performers with each week. If Michaels and Undertaker don’t steal the show at the Granddaddy of them All, these two will.
Over on the TNA side of things, well, to be honest, I don’t watch Impact all that often. There are a few cool things going on. I remember a few weeks back when Samoa Joe had a knife to Scott Steiner’s throat. When Joe left, Steiner exclaimed, “That was a knife!” Made me laugh out loud. I sincerely believe that TNA is one storyline away from really becoming “big time.” And we, as wrestling fans, should be excited that we’ve been able to witness the rise of a professional wrestling organization.
Most writers are claiming that they’re not too excited about Wrestlemania this year. I disagree. I haven’t really looked forward to anything (save the Shawn Michaels Ric Flair match from last year) about Wrestlemania since Wrestlemania 20. Since then, nothing has really made me excited about the show. I’m excited about quite a few things this year. The Hardy match, the HBK/Undertaker match, whatever Jericho does; even the two championship matches have me anxious. So yes, I’m excited for Wrestlemania this year. And no amount of negativity can change that fact for me, so I urge you, dear reader, to not let it change that fact for you either.
As a side note, does it make anyone else laugh when individuals who were once in the wrestling business think they know everything there is to know about the current product, and swear up and down that they could do things a hundred times better? If that were the case, why aren’t they still in the business? I’m looking at you Heyman, and others.
I told you what I like about professional wrestling today. Why don’t you tell me what you like? It can be a match, a storyline, whatever. Maybe for you, it’s hard to like anything. But I’ve gotta believe that there’s something for all of us that keeps us coming back, which is the basis of why professional wrestling is (or was) popular to begin with. So, my children, what do you like about professional wrestling? If you email me at Westernrebellion@live.com with your answer, maybe I’ll feature it here next week. As for this week’s mailbag, I asked you readers what your first or favorite wrestling moments were. Here’s what you said:
I can totally relate to the having the belt by you at RAW, I do that for ECW & SD! too as well as a few other things that make my room almost like being there (smoke, lighting etc)
 
And yes I still have my action figures and I still play with them, have many many more merchandise. And I ALWAYS write down matches and results as well. Funny, I thought I was the only one, but maybe now I’m one of few including you.
 
Do you have matches with yourself too? Lol.
Psh. No! I don’t do that. That’d be…dumb….and childish…and immature. You need to, er, grow up kid!
 
Great article this week..in answer to your question…
 
The first match I saw was Kane vs The Undertaker Inferno Match. To that point I had never been so scared in my life seeing Kane with his leg on fire and Undertaker holding the burning teddy bear in front of Vince McMahons face. I was hooked! Watched Heat everyweek on Channel 4 thereafter will my folks got Sky1 and I could watch Smackdown! But the memory that is stuck in my head is Royal Rumble 2000 the first event I taped on Channel 4. Cactus Jack vs Triple H, The Hardyz vs The Dudleyz, The Rumble Match itself. One of my favourite events ever. Jeff Hardy Swanton Bombing through those tables will be in my mind forever!!
 
Have a Nice Day,
 
Billy 
 
Ah Billy. I remember that match. I had to flip back and forth between that match and 7th Heaven, cause if my mom saw a devil worshipper fighting another guy in fire, I’d have been grounded for life! I’m glad you have that memory of Royal Rumble. Hold onto that. There really is something special about a wrestling memory. It’s linked to your childhood forever, and nothing and nobody can take that away. Thanks Bill.
Nick,
I really don’t agree with your assessment that all wrestling fans do is complain. You see it on most wrestling boards, I will agree, but what you don’t seem to be taking the time to read are the comments from other fans. Yeah, some people might not like the current TNA storyline with the MEM and others think that Randy Orton is the most over-rated wrestler, sorry “Superstar,” of all time but at least these people are debating it and at the end of the day, they will still tune in and watch the product.. And when people are watching something, it isn’t done because of what they hate but for what they like about it.
Anyways, enough of me ranting. You asked about wrestling memories we had and I have two very distinct ones. I watched wrestling when I was around 4 or 5 and can still remember getting excited when going to the toy store to pick out a new action figure and have them wrestle in the blue plastic WWF Ring I had. It looked like something from an old WrestleMania. It was completely baby blue with red, white and blue ring ropes. After about 3 years or so, I stopped watching wrestling when my friends from school decided it wasn’t cool anymore but that the Might Morphing Power Rangers were the greatest thing to ever hit television. Then, sometime around middle school comes wrestling memory number 2. Every Monday and Friday night, I would barricade myself in my sister’s room and watch wrestling. We didn’t have a remote control for that television, so I would sit as close as possible and when somebody started to come in, I would change the channel as quick as possible and hope my parents wouldn’t see it. Now, my younger brother is a big fan with all the toys and when I am home, he and I watch the shows together and talk about where we think wrestling is going.
Anyways, keep with the good work and thanks for the time,
Ryan Sullivan
 
Ryan,
For the record, don’t ever disagree with me again. I’m right. You’re wrong. End of story.
Actually, you’re probably right. I should take more time to read what positive things people say. Unfortunately, the time that I do have to actually read message boards and what-not, usually consists of mostly negative comments. Maybe I need to find a different message board to visit, other than IHateWrestling.com. Hmm.
One of the most beautiful things about pro wrestling is it’s ability to create bonds among family and friends. It’s awesome that you can watch wrestling with your little bro. Something that he’s always going to remember is watching professional wrestling with his big brother and feeling like the coolest kid on the planet. Well done sir!
 
Hey great article. I can’t believe you used to write out matches with wrestling figures, I used to do the same thing haha. I thought I was the only one. I actually used to draw the symbols for each pay per view (Armageddon, In Your House Fully Loaded, Survivor Series, King of the Ring, etc.)
 
Anyway on to the point of this e-mail: my first memory of wrestling. The Ultimate Warrior. I was about 4 or 5 years old watching his promos on TV and was scared shitless. I was so scared of this man that I used to leave the room when he came on. Maybe it was all the weird yelling and screaming. But oddly enough one of my favorite memories of wrestling was when he showed up many years later on Nitro to confront Hogan, that was awesome to me. Looking back that promo obviously sucked and his WCW run didn’t quite pan out but it was still cool to me because I totally didn’t expect it. (I wasn’t on the internet as much at that age). Some other favorites of mine are The Rock and Austin. I enjoyed Bret Hart’s matches but not so much his mic work. Anyway again, great article. Keep ’em coming!
 
You used to draw the symbols? Psh. Nerd. That’s almost as bad as drawing wrestlers in your notebook at school, instead of stupid math homework. Not that I, ya know, ever did that or anything. Shut up.
Your Warrior memory backs up a previously made point. Nobody, or nothing, can take away the memories that you have of professional wrestling, even professional wrestling. As evidenced by the Ultimate Warrior DVD that WWE put out a few years ago, Vince and whoever else wanted us to feel like idiots for ever investing time or money into the Ultimate Warrior. But what he can’t ever do is take away the memories that you have.
It’s a tough life being good looking, early 20’s, with a girlfriend, and being an open wrestling fan. I give you props for coming out and embracing your passion.

I’m also a good looking male, in my early 20’s, and I have a serious respect for wrestling. It’s hard for people to understand why.

Just sling as much sh*t as you want, and shoot holes in wrestlezone. Its a really decent website, a lot of people will read what you have to say. So just speak for us normal, young, guys who dont look like wrestling fans, but inexplicably are.

The moment that got me hooked on the business was on an episode of Monday Night Raw, probably 1995. Vader attacked and vader bombed the then WWF president, Gorilla Monsoon. Gorilla got a few chops in, but Vader took him dowwwnnnn. Tons of heat for sh*t like that, back in that day. Probably a year or two before you started watching…peace

 
Hey thanks for the positive reinforcement guy! You bet that I’ll keep slinging that proverbial sh*t for as long as Nick and Chris allow.
I didn’t get to watch Vader murder Gorilla Monsoon when it first happened, but the Best of Raw DVD collection that came out last year allowed me to view it in all it’s glory. I can only imagine how exciting and innovative that was when it first happened.
 
That’s all folks. Thanks for reading, and come back next week! As with every article, maybe you like it, maybe you hate it, but I’m not sayin, I’m just sayin.

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