Wednesday, December 27, 2006
Friday, December 22, 2006
This wicked world must be cleansed with flame.
Monday, December 18, 2006
Friday, December 15, 2006
I'll never forget my first time eating at PastaMania!...I ordered a plate of the spaghetti and Hulk-balls. The hand-rolled pasta was cooked to perfection, the aromatic sauce both rich and sweet, and the horsemeat tender and bursting with flavor. And the service was fantastic...professional, passionate, knowledgeable, and attentive. Why, Brian Knobbs must have refilled my bread basket three times! I would return again and again, each time trying a new creation: the Hulkioli, the Hulkadelle, the Hulkolini, and of course the Hulkuccine.
What was the Hulkster's secret? How could he achieve that elusive synthesis of bold and assertive flavors with a sense of delicacy, intricacy, and nuance in every dish? According to Hogan in an incredibly candid interview with Food & Wine: "At PastaMania!, our formula for success is twofold, dude. First, we select only the freshest ingredients from organic and artisanal producers. Then, we slow cook those ingredients in a microwave oven, brother." Cooking methods and techniques aside, you could really taste Hulk Hogan's heart, soul, and passion in each innovative, flawlessly executed dish. Or that could have been the horsemeat.
Why Pastamania! had to abruptly shut its doors (I mean pull down and latch its metal security gate) is a subject to contemplate at another time. I am still teeming with grief. It is too soon...the pain, still very raw. All I know is that a little part of me died that cold and dreary December morn. Thankfully, I have found a new favorite dining destination.
Tuesday, December 12, 2006
Mel Gibson. Keith Richards. Creed's pompous front man and all around worthless piece of crap Scott Stapp. Chris Tucker. "Hot Stuff" Eddie Gilbert. You may be asking, what do these men have in common? Do they all have the reputation for being difficult to work with? Perhaps. Did they get infected with a particularly resilient strain of gonorrhea after engaging in lewd and lascivious acts with Missy Hyatt? That certainly seems plausible. However, the answer will both astonish and appall: They have all been accused of recklessly operating a motor vehicle!!!
Thank you, anonymous YouTube user, for providing The Arabian Facebuster Driving School with this cautionary footage.
After getting fired from the USWA for committing numerous heinous atrocities, all of which likely involved some sort of mysterious white powder or a fireball, Eddie Gilbert, along with brother Doug (the Roger Clinton of the Gilbert brothers) prepare to depart the Memphis television studio for the final time. As Doug retrieves his crimson 1986 Mercury Sable from across the street, disgruntled brother Eddie gives one last beat-down to promoter Eddie Marlin in the parking lot. Jerry Lawler comes out to save Marlin and confront Gilbert. Not wanting a taste of the King's aristocratic vengeance, Gilbert retreats to the idling automobile. Brother Doug slides across the front seat into the shotgun position, alas fulfilling Eddie's dream to drive a car that cherry. Seconds later, in perhaps the most fantastically dickish, chicken-shit heel move that professional wrestling has ever witnessed, Eddie Gilbert runs over Jerry Lawler, and then drives away at prudent speed into the night, I mean late-morning. Meanwhile, Bill Dundee, a very young Double J, and a couple of unidentified neon trunk wearing, mullet sporting babyfaces rush to the King's side.
Legend has it, fans at the television taping called the Memphis police to report the vehicular assault (kayfabe rules!) and that a short time later, the police showed up at the studio looking to arrest Hot Stuff. Read more about it here and here. Enjoy this classic professional wrestling angle!
"Say Hello to the Bloated Guy"
Some choose a straight and narrow. Others a more circuitous path. Dear children of the mat, the Reverend vonFury has returned from the wilderness and the lands of non to deliver warning this: choose thy path carefully lest the sweet smokey lady-like fingers of Professional Wrestling's Pepe' le Peew seductions woo you with their promises of intoxicated commercial air-line public nudity and Championship saving heart-attacks on your birthday.
The Ravages it Wreaks! Gods! The Twists of Fate highs, the Swanton Bomb lows... How any man could ever dare to live his Boyhood Dream when so many of the Superstars, the Kings of the Ring, the Sky-Walkers, have fallen so far and so hard!?!?
Believe in oh me my children, for I, though never truly daring the dangers of the squared circle, have inhaled the sweaty canvas must of its fateful dread living as I have lived literally snipping up scraps at its broken-table littered ringside.
Its Word-Life inflatable thumb and pinky finger extend like Charon's bony hand at the river, seeking to extract payment. Your very own beloved Rev., just as a too-oftened maligned Kevin Federline, as only pure and innocent bystanders, both lost their wives to this Pro-Wrestling Bitch Goddess and her malevolent appetitites!
Dear little ones, Forgive me..I fear I tire. But yes, oh yes, I will return sooner than the last time, my brethren and belfry flock with more cautionary photos and spiritual content...
This lawsuit is preposterous.
If DDP (who has been hanging out in South Africa with Wesley Snipes, helping Blade with his tax dodge/motion picture Gallowwalker) thinks he's the first person in the history of history to realize that putting your thumbs and index fingers together makes a diamond, he's retarded. Furthermore, I cannot for the life of me fathom how either one of these gentlemen (?) can claim to have made one thin dime off of this ridiculous bit of hand-puppetry. This is just another one of those much-maligned frivolous lawsuits that are cluttering our nation's courts. Lock 'em both up, that's what I say. DDP was worse than useless even when he was stinking up WCW rings on a regular basis, and Jay-Z is possibly the most overrated MC of all time (and, according to some, a "lying cocksmoker" to boot).
Further, DDP should watch out for lawsuits himself. A character in his new movie is named (oddly enough) "Fabulos," which this fellow might find rather actionable. This assumes, of course, that none of the parties involved can spell (and let's be real here: they can't).
Friday, December 08, 2006
Submitted for your approval: the music video for "Bad Man" by WWE's own John Cena. This particular little number features some auxillary cracker calling himself "Tha Trademarc" and legitimate underground legend Bumby Knuckles aka Freddie Foxx. Some marketing genius decided the way to keep Cena's rap career from being perceived as a joke was to stick him in an A-Team parody. Cena plays Hannibal, Tha Trademarc does Murdock, and Bumpy Knucks looks embarassed and uncomfortable as B.A. Baracus.
Apologies for how loud the Gary Coleman bits are. God only knows why these chiefs mixed his voice so high. I'm also puzzled as to why Bumpy Knuckles didn't murder Cena for that "After my verse, fast forward through the rest of the song" shit. In closing, let me state that Bumpy's line, "Your face is a cold, tight wad of blood and snot" is one of the best lyrics in any genre of music, EVER.
Thursday, December 07, 2006
Anyhoo, just look in the man's eyes. This picture right here says it all. The man's life is torture. Let him rest. The Facebuster staff feel that Paul Wight deserves a respite from the agonies of professional grappling. He deserves hope. He deserves a life of his own. Farewell, Big Show. We wish you all the best.
Now don't come back, you fat fucking bloodbag.
Tuesday, December 05, 2006
We sat at the bar and started setting up beer bottles (there were NO BEERS ON TAP). The bartender paid us little heed, wrapped as she was in a tale of violence and debauchery. "Shannon and Paul had a fight earlier," she explained to no one in particular. "She was throwing stools at him. I had to kick them out." Jesus Christ, I thought. Jesus fucking Christ. A flung stool in a space this small would be like a live grenade in a dumptruck. Someone must have been seriously hurt.
The atmosphere of simmering bloodshed jolted our pickled brains back to the matter at hand. It was still ten till the hour... the CAGE MATCH WAS STILL ON! We nervously began pestering the bartender to let us watch wrestling on the tiny TV that hung above the bar. She turned slowly toward it, as though noticing it for the first time. "Becker" was on.
"Sure, whatever," she said, and passed the remote... to the Smoking Man at the bar.
"What channel you want?" he croaked.
"Spike TV! Spike TV! Ah... we think it's... 57?"
A nicotine-stained fingernail stabbed at the buttons. No dice. It was... I dunno. "Alias" or something. The man grunted and tossed the remote to the bar. We looked timidly at it. We looked at the clock. Five minutes of TV time remaining. Remote. TV. Clock. Remote.
"Can we just sort of surf around with that?" Von Fury's voice did a great job of not cracking with fear. The man grunted consentingly (we hoped).
Click. Click. Click. And there, on a screen the size of a piece of notebook paper, was the bloody BLOODY head of Christian Cage. There were some straightjacket antics. Some chair antics. the steady, reasurring drip of Christian's blood hitting the canvas. Five glorious minutes passed, and it was over.
We ordered a celebratory round of Michelob. It was a small victory, but a victory nonetheless.
And then the SECOND HOUR OF iMPACT! started. We gaped at each other. Had time come unstuck? Were they rerunning the whole damn show? AJ Styles, Christopher Daniels, and Chris Sabin started walloping on each other. It dawned on us that TNA had sprung for an additional hour to ring in their prime time debut. We began to rejoice.
The smoking man glared at the screen. "What the fuck is this?" he snarled, "Fuckin' Gay Boy Wrestling?"
As AJ Styles wrapped his bicycle-short-covered thighs around Chris Sabin's handsome face, we were forced to concede that it was, indeed Gay Boy Wrestling. And all was right with the world.
Monday, December 04, 2006
Granted, I didn't actually purchase D2D, let alone go to the local Hooter's and watch it with rubes of similar cognitive ability to these guys. Rather, I saw the results on the Internet last night. What were Vince and his merry band of dim witted sycophants thinking when they put this show together? CM Punk eliminated first in the elimination chamber? RVD pinned moments later? The baiting and switching of Sabu? Tommy Dreamer doing the job to Davari? Heel vs. heel mixed tag team action? Sandman relegated to a token beer swilling, Singapore cane swinging cameo? Matt Stryker in action? A new ECW Champion who wasn't even in the brand three weeks ago? Ending the PPV 40 minutes before the hour?
Since it is clear that Vincent Kennedy McMahon is hell bent on crushing the fond memories fans had for the old ECW and expunging the optimism they once held/patiently continue to hold for the relaunched version, I wanted to reach out to this leviathan of sports entertainment and provide him with a few suggestions on how to accelerate the fan apathy and antipathy, financial insolvency, and spectacular collapse of the most extreme brand in WWE Incorporated's sports entertainment portfolio; in short, to help him further sabotage and ultimately destroy his product and investment. Here are a few ideas off the top of my head...feel free to add more (hopefully they will be witty and funny, unlike the ones below) in the comments section.
1. Hotshot title change tomorrow night...Oh My God, the Mummy is new your new ECW Heavyweight Champion!
2. Similar to the NWO on Monday Nitro, have Mike Knox and Renee Dupree take over all future episodes of ECW on Sci-Fi.
3. Tonight on ECW...The Dungeon of Doom reunites!
4. Have CM Punk wrestle in black-face.
5. Pay off the Miz-BoogyMan feud in ECW with a series of 60 minute time limit draws.
6. Hold a tournament to crown ECW Tag Team Champions. Have Rob Van Dam and Sabu put over cleanly and decisively the new titleholders...Brooke and Nick Hogan.
7. Sign Raven. If he is unavailable, then bring in his talentless equivalent...Naked Mideon.
8. Bring back Kelly's Expose and have her suggestively dance with Mae Young, the DX fat male stripper, and, of course, the entire McMahon family!
9. Replace Taz(z) on color commentary with Ron Simmons.
10. At the start of each show, replay the entire clip from RAW where Joey Styles "shoots" on the WWE's puerile storylines and all around contempt of professional wrestling to remind those viewers who have yet to abandon the product as to why ECW was (supposedly) relaunched in the first place.
Sunday, December 03, 2006
Thursday, November 30, 2006
Other than Tommy "Wildfire" Rich and "Mad Dog" Buzz Sawyer, who engaged in a series of incredibly sadistic and bloody battles across the state of Georgia (climaxing with the legendary Last Battle of Atlanta in October 1983), I am not sure as to who is feuding with who, let alone the nature of the grievances, in this brief yet chaotic brawl.
Quick summary: As Gordon Solie and Rich call the action in the ring, Sawyer ambushes Wildfire at the announce position. The fight spreads quickly out to the ringside area, interrupting the no doubt riveting scientific clinic being put on between two of the territory's finer enhancement talents (see "BAR, STANDING ARM" at the six second mark of this clip for more information). Then, all HELL breaks lose as Kevin Sullivan (as a face!?), Ole Anderson, Roddy Piper (in full Scottish regalia), "The American Dream" Dusty Rhodes (sans a Baby Doll or Sweet Sapphire at his chubby side), and George "The Animal" Steele charge the ring and escalate the conflict. Steele all of a sudden goes into full on berzerker mode -- smashing Piper's head into the post one minute, reigning blows down upon Ole Anderson the next.
Like any good pro wrestling angle should, this clip provokes more questions than it provides answers. Why did Kevin Sullivan rush to ringside to go after Sawyer? And why exactly did Ole attack Sullivan? And what provoked the Animal to assault Piper so ferociously? Was Solie's remark that the Animal Steele was the most awesome individual he had ever seen in his life an example of his celebrated dry wit or proclivity for getting hammered on the job? Is the American Dream really that slothful in person, or does the camera add 20 (or in this case 50) pounds? Most lingering to this author, after Jobber #2 made it to the ropes, would Jobber #1 have released the arm bar, BEFORE the count of five? Frustratingly, this last question will forever remain shrouded in uncertainty... the focus of intensive inquiry, analysis, speculation, and debate apt to confound scholars and pundits alike for generations to come.
The Arabian Facebuster staff send our deepest sympathy and support to Mr. Piper in his battle against Hodgkin's Lymphoma. Please get well soon and get back to cutting promos like the one featured above from his feud with Canadian Citizen (and sometime colleague of Streetfighter Tim Flowers) Bad News Brown.
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
While watching the new breed unleashed on Sci-Fi last night, I couldn't help but notice the uncanny resemblance between ECW referee Scott Armstrong and former-GBV frontman Robert Pollard. Are the prolific singer-songwriter and the man assigned the unenviable task of maintaining some semblance of law and order in the Extreme Elimination Chamber on PPV this Sunday night both descended from the now steroid ravaged loins of "Bullet" Bob Armstrong? After placing a phone call to the authoritative Black Jack Brown, gathering an abundance of circumstantial and often contradictory evidence in the back issues of Man Splat, posting numerous inciting and rumor mongering messages on the ECW bulletin board under multiple user names and IP addresses, and submitting a paternity test of questionable contents to the Maury Povich show, the Arabian Facebuster Institute for Genealogic Studies concludes, irrefutably, "YES!"
However, this inexorable outcome begs the question: How come Bullet Bob's flawless genes were not passed down to this man?
It is a strange and disorienting thing to take one's enthusiasm for professional grappling out into the public eye. Safe in the confines of the living room, bellowing drunkenly at the screen, the constraints of modern society fall away. It is not unheard of for our team of correspondents to descend to the level of common beasts, howling and shrieking, leaping about the room like those apes at the beginning of 2001. Sure, we're just doing our Randy Orton impressions, but things can still get pretty nutty. It's easy to forget that there is a civilization outside the squared circle.
Thus, our first week without cable was rather difficult. RAW and SmackDown, we could live without. ECW? Pah. I'm beginning to get hoarse from scoffing at those jackasses. TNA, however, was an altogether different matter. Despite a certain jitteriness (to put things delicately) in their booking, they still put out the best TV wrestling show on the market, and their move to Prime Time was not to be missed. We were especially excited by the promise of the Christian/Rhino barbed wire (!) cage (!) match. Tired and jaded we may be, but massive lacerations and bloodshed still count for something in these modern times.
So it was that the Arabian Facebuster Editorial Staff found ourselves slouching into "The Barn," a rustic-looking drinkery in the posh environs of North Portland. As the saloon door slammed, we were greeted by a thick haze of smoke and a trio of soused Irishmen bulling their way through "Danny Boy." As they ramped up for the coda, one of the lads tottered over to the cluster of old-timers watching CSI at the bar.
"Can you please fuckin' turn off that fuckin' CSI so's we can hear this great fuckin' song?" he queried. "Just fuckin' turn it off for ten fuckin' seconds so we can fuckin' drunk talk jobble jobble mutter sluuurrrrr...."
Things looked grim for anyone wanting to watch a cage match in this joint. We grabbed our drinks and scuttered furtively into the back room, where a second TV towered. It gleamed majestically, gloriously unwatched. We waved the bartender over and began lobbying for our program. She seemed quite amenable, even going so far as to hit the "on" button, but then the St. Patrick's Parade in the next room boiled over. One of the inebriates took it upon himself to purge the Devil CSI and began attacking the television. The bartender raced into the front room to chastise him.
We sulked. The TV was on, showing some unwatchable police procedural. Perhaps it was a "Law and Order" or perhaps a "Homicide." It was certainly not a cage match. We tried flipping the channels ourselves, but who could make heads or tails of this damn satellite business? Why couldn't this bar get magic pixies trucked in along a length of cable like normal people?
The bartender returned, her knuckles bruised and a knot of red hair in her fist. The lads in the next room fumed along to a Pogues/Thin Lizzy medley. A quick stab of a button, and there was Spike TV. And no wrestling.
"Oh," the bartender said, "The satellite's on Eastern Time. Your show started at six." With that, she clomped off to the bar, leaving us to blink awkwardly at the Japanese game show confronting us. We lapped miserably at our beers. There was nothing left to do but get drunk. We ordered another round and began to discuss which road would best lead us to oblivion.
It was decided that, in the interest of adventure, we should investigate the establishment across the street.
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
I'm unsure to whether the title of this post is supposed to be an allusion to Yoda's syntax or those
This clip comes from Mid-Atlantic Wrestling, circa 1983/84. For some unspecified and likely pointless reason, Sir Oliver Humperdrink offered anyone in professional wrestling $5,000 if they could slam his meal-ticket, and the most corpulent white man to ever roam the mean streets of
Anyways, after failing the week before, Dizzy "The Booty Man" Hogan makes another gallant but ultimately futile attempt to slam the Gang and collect the money. Suddenly, out comes Jimmy "The Boogie Woogie Man" Valiant. Between Valiant, the Gang, and Humperdink, the collection of mangy hairdos and unkept beards in the ring are truly a spectacle to behold. After a pathetic first try, Valiant demands the sound guy in the back to cue his music, presumably to his get his adrenaline flowing and enhance the rail after glorious rail of coke he snorted seconds before charging the ring. The sound guy obliges. As the AM soft rock stylings of Tony Orlando blare over the PA, Valiant lifts the Gang high into the air; but before he can drop the Gang onto his ample posterior, Humperdink intervenes, the Gang comes crashing down onto the hapless Valiant, and the beat down is muthafuckin' ON!
Dizzy "The Barber" Hogan finally gets his wits about him and makes the save, but it is too late. Valiant is convulsing on the canvas, his body in shock from the devastating 747 splash exacerbated by the toxic quantity of yayo in his system.
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
Rather, I needed to free myself from the mediocrity, unfulfilled expectations, and consistent disappointment that is the current state of modern day sports entertainment programming. From Joey Styles predictably grunting "OH!" after every Mike Knox back body drop and Test boot to the face; to the trailers for The Marine week after agonizing week regardless of what brand I was watching; to redundant Extreme Rules matches; to finding valuable television time and a meaningful program for K-Fed but not for Shelton Benjamin; to the Great Khali in ECW, let alone having a job in professional wrestling; to the RAW Diva Search; to the narcissistic comedy stylings and change the channel inducing escapades of D-Generation X; to Matt Hardy defeating Gregory Helms in a non-title match for the 114th consecutive time; to the hyperactive, manic, nonsensical booking in TNA (even more so than usual it seems); to Matt Stryker's 'curtain jerker at the high-school gymnasium' gimmick, ring attire, mike-work, moveset and in-ring psychology; to the Miz NOT being repeatedly stabbed by a nameless assailant and left for dead in the parking lot prior to a house show; I couldn't take it anymore. I was disaffected. I needed a sabbatical. So I avoided the television on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday nights and quit blogging on the ONLY professional wrestling site that matters.
So why am I once again embracing my addiction to THE modern day professional wrestling, despite its sheer crappulance!? Well, I learned some hard lessons over the past few months: (1) Watching the same old botched Lex Luger interview over and over again on YouTube was not a sufficient, long-term replacement for fresh, unabashedly scripted and awkwardly delivered promos by RVD and Sabu; (2) Despite booking that makes them often look weak or foolish, I genuinely enjoy watching the likes of Chris Benoit, Samoa Joe, Christpher Daniels, Finlay, and even The Monster Abyss for their innovative matches and willingness to give as much (if not more) as they take; (3) It is imperative to look towards/at the present in order to more fully appreciate the past goodness and simplistic brilliance of Crockett Promotions/NWA, World Class, the UWF, the original ECW, etc; and (closely related) (4) I would rather watch DREADFUL episodic professional wrestling/sports entertainment and voice my frustration and disdain (in blog form!) with its content and direction than abstain altogether.
So I hope you'll welcome me back, my giddy Arabian Facebuster multitude. If you do, I promise to keep bringing the old skool photos of the week, 80s video clips, Apter magazine excerpts, and sporadic yet measured commentary on the current state of pro werestling affairs. In short, I vow to stay off the wagon, for good.
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
My family fortunes were drained. My once-vast real estate empire lay in ruins. The yacht, in flames, slid beneath the icy waters of the Willamette (which, I suppose, quenched the flames. I wouldn't know. I was at home, drinking and crying and watching wrestling, remember?). What had I become? WHAT HAD I BECOME?
More to the point, what had WRESTLING become? RAW was a shiftless morass of (sports) ENTERTAINMENT, a resurgent Eric Bischoff riding roughshod over my cherished Warzone. ECW, once the brightest gem in the wrestling heavens, had become less than a ghost of itself, gleefully hoovering up whatever pitiful crumbs Vince McMahon let fall from his never-ending Shit Buffet. Smackdown, tragically, remained Smackdown.
Even my beloved TNA had forsaken me. "Bound for Glory" mired itself in mediocrity, and with Vince Russo at the helm, the course seemed set. TNA would gradually squander all that made them beautiful, hitching themselves to a surgically-reduced God Botherer and a pilled-up lunatic with a death wish. Even the LAX/Chertoff feud had ended, giving way to an unpromising dust-up with a pair of underperforming gay cowboys.
In this flat gray landscape, so destitue that I could no longer buy brandy, was I seriously considering spending MORE money on wrestling? It seemed that I, or perhaps the world, had gone mad.
I lifted my tear stained face, and looked to Monday Night RAW for what cold comfort it could offer. There, John Cena railed against his new foil, Kevin Federline (Ay! Mi Estomago!). He discussed experiencing a "moment of clarity." Then and there, I had my answer.
No more cable. No more On Demand. No more PPV. No 24/7. Cold turkey. If I must howl my critiques into the void, then Smackdown would be my muse. It was free. It was two hours long. It was not really THAT much worse than RAW or ECW.
I felt a tremendous weight lift, and the sun (metaphorically) appeared through the clouds. My life gained a monastic focus and simplicity. I was filled with a burning creative drive, a sense of righteous purpose. This was a wise thing I was doing. I felt saintlike. I felt Christlike. I felt like (rapture of raptures!) STING.
There you have it, gentle reader. My Road to Damascus moment. From this point on, Arabian Facebuster will be a leaner, hungrier beast. We will give you the finest wrestling coverage that No Money can buy. FREE WRESTLING FOR A FREE WORLD!
Except for TNA Impact!, which the Facebuster staff will be watching at The Barn in North Portland every Thursday. Oh, and we're buying the ECW Pay-Per-View, too, but that's the last one, EVER. I PROMISE.
Friday, November 03, 2006
The saddest part of this whole (alleged) Sting Fat-Sucking coverup is that dude was in pretty decent shape anyway. A bit doughy, to be sure, but fit as hell for a forty-seven-year-old man. Damn you, Extreme Makeover. Damn you to hell.
BTW, what the fuck is up with these ridiculous pouches Sting always has over his crotch? This one looks like a turtle's beak.
Anyhoo, the left nipple appears to be where they removed 20% of the Sting from their federation. You know what I call that?
A damn good start. God, I kill me.
Sunday, October 29, 2006
My return has been an emotional one, made all the more so when I discovered the headquarters mail room flooded with the neglected letters of our ever-devoted fans: Dear Pencil Neck Geek, Who is this Chris Benoit guy and should the Great Kahli be concerned? Pencil Neck Geek, Are the new Jimmy Wang Yang collectible belt buckles available at WWE Shop Zone yet? Pencil Neck Geek, How can one justify the existence of God when innocent children are starving, cancer remains uncured, and the Miz is allowed to stink up the ring week after week? Well fans, like the return of Mark Henry, these questions will have to wait for another week. Today we must turn our attention to:
The CW! In a last ditch effort to avert the inevitable demise of the UPN and WB, the two floundering networks have recently been consolidated to into a mega-emporium of crap programming. As the corporate assholes behind this unholy merger desperately scramble to keep their sinking ship afloat, ratings are the highest order of the day. This is serious people. Our beloved SmackDown is just one more Bobby Lashley main event away from being replaced by a 7th Heaven marathon. Fortunately, said ratings have arrived- swathed in red spandex.
Intrepid research by the AFOSP (Arabian Facebuster Online Surveillance Program) reveals that Kane holds the cure for the seemingly unstoppable malaise that has plagued SmackDown for years. High level internet sources have assured us that the program, and wrestling in general, can be taken to glorious new heights if Vince will just strap the gold on this pasty monster. So what if I've always found the guy to be a bit one-dimensional in the ring? Desperate times call for, um, pyrotechnics and choke slams. Join me, won't you, as I usher in an exciting new era of Nielsen domination (in my best Jim Ross Shriek):
Omigawd! It's Kane! ... Kane!! ... Kane!!! ... KANE!!!
Wednesday, October 25, 2006
The sooner I can ring the mental curtain down on "Glory," the better. I must, however tarry for one moment more. 700 Club Member Steve Borden aka Sting aka your NWA World Champeen has apparently had some cheap back-alley fat-sucking surgery. Photos from the PPV are being sequestered by the TNA honchos, but we'll post 'em as we finds 'em. When we DO find 'em, or if any of you happen to be watching iMPACT! this week, check out Sting's left nipple (I know, I'm sorry, bear with me). What the ass is that bizarre scar tissue doing? And where have Sting's love handles gone? And why isn't he wrestling in his singlet (for the first time in like ten years) anymore? And why didn't TNA use some of that Kurt Angle money to spring for a legitimate surgeon? Hell, even I know the scar for something like this is s'posed to go UNDER one's man-boob/pectoral muscle/what-have-you.
So, "Bound For Glory": Underwhelming.
LAX Versus Styles/Chertoff: Awesome.
Sting: Scarred, Shrunken, God-Fearing.
Thank you and goodnight.
Thursday, October 12, 2006
Friday, October 06, 2006
We at Arabian Facebuster applaud Kanyon for his bravery, decry Vince McMahon for his (completely obvious but still alleged) homophobia, and hope Mr. Kanyon can get off the indie circuit and into TNA sometime soon. Sure, he says he's making good money and all, but come on, man. Let's get your gay ass back on the TV. On second thought, perhaps not.
Oh, and Mr. McMahon, if you want to remove the dark stain of homophobia from your company, I got three words for ya: Big Gay Viscera.
On the other hand, true racial understanding among the working classes would mean an end to the feud between the LAX and AJ Styles/Christopher Daniels (Pictured above at left). This, obviously, will not stand. Last month's Ultimate X match finally ushered in the much-heralded New Era of Violence, to near-universal acclaim. THIS month, we are blessed to receive a 6 Sides of Steel match (a cage match, for those of you wrestling in non-goofy rings) just in time for the first ever Arabian Facebuster Roundtable Summit (we welcome our visitors from the Land of 10,000 Lakes). It should be glorious, to say the least.
That said, it causes me no end of intellectual discomfort to know that this tremendous bounty lies at my feet ONLY through the tragic state of US-Mexico border relations. As long as the LAX represent the monstrous Bogey Man lurking at our Southern Border, eager to steal our jobs/make off with our women/enhance our cuisine, we are assured that the high-flying bloodbaths will continue. Should we (horrors!) relax into multiculturalism, the feud will lose heat faster than this guy.
So I am torn. I of couse want all humans everywhere to love and understand each other. I realize that Global Capitalism exploits the working stiffs of ALL cultures, and only by banding together to resist the cold hand of the multinational conglomerate can we ever hope to elevate ourselves. I also realize that LAX/Styles/Daniels plus steel cage equals TOTAL KICKASS. And if Arabian Facebuster cares about anything, it is ass kickin', no matter what its culture of origin.
Wednesday, September 27, 2006
First: I was right about the Raven/Abyss/Runt match. Everybody says so. Yes, the Ultimate X Tag match was (much) more polished, but the triple threat had HEART. I'm a sucker for people overcoming their personal limitations. Whether scrawny, kneeless, or mute, Our Boys pulled off a garbage wrestling tour-de-force t'other night, and lo! I sing their praises.
On to other things. While the LAX labor manfully to usher in a much-desired "new era of violence," a counter-insuregency has been launched. Deep in the bowels (haw!) of TNA, the leading lights of the X Division are dedicating themselves to exploring the heights (depths?) of faux-hilarious jackassery. In short, they desire a New Era of Whimsy.
From the initial Jackass 2 tie-in stunt (pictured in all its grisly detail above) to the awkwardly executed bowling-ball-to-crotch thing to Sunday Night's capital-D Dreadful laxative/blow-up doll double-header, the X Division Boys are cutting a swath of "Tom and Jerry" mayhem through the usually staid environs of the iMPACT! zone. While I will acknowledge that watching Petey Williams struggle to contain his impending "poop package" elicited a few juvenile chuckles, I am by and large opposed to all this "comedy."
Perhaps it is, in some small way, my fault. I have stated loudly and publicly that Chris Sabin, Jay Lethal, and (e-fucking-specially) Sonjay Dutt, whether singly or en masse, do not have the personality God gave a twig. Arabian Facebuster's influence is worldwide, and TNA cannot be blamed for responding to our critiques. Regardless, I must insist that dressing "The Playa from the Himalayas" up in an oversized baseball jersey and having Chris Sabin smell his ass is NOT what we had in mind.
I was wrong. There, I said it. The X Division stars are great BECAUSE they lack personality. I long for the days of faceless, interchangeable daredevils ping-ponging around the ridiculous six-sided ring. These fellows must not be allowed anywhere near a microphone, and should perhaps have their faces surgically altered so they all look like clones of each other. Then they can get back to flying around the ring like so many lucha-inspired popcorn kernels.
Take heed, TNA. This japery will not stand. Arabian Facebuster decrees it.
Friday, September 22, 2006
At the risk of overhyping this crippled, lumbering mass of hair dye and flannel, I must once again urge the readers of Arabian Facebuster to consider: Raven. The reason I have to shell out my hard-earned lucre for another goddamn PPV.
My attitude towards the upcoming TNA "No Surrender" Pay-Per-View could be charitably described as chilly. Disinterested. Totes Whatevs. TNA is clearly saving its full attention for "Bound For Glory" next month, leading the informed wrestling fan to conclude that "Surrender" will be a mere placeholder, marking time until the electrifying thrill-fest that is the biggest low-rent wrestling event of the year.
Then, curse them, the TNA booking masterminds started piling on the quality. The LAX/Styles/Daniels feud has provided that much-sought-after "next level of violence" your correspondent craves. Samoa Joe has promised to literally murder Jeff Jarrett. And the Christian Cage/Rhino matchup should be really adequate.
And, innocuously slipped into the undercard, we have Raven vs. The Monster Abyss vs. Brother Runt. Three men. Four knees. No Disqualifications. There's your match of the evening, right fucking there. I cannot for the life of me imagine why TNA is not sinking more hype into this bloodbath. Raven and Runt have more than proven that they are willing to drop a few pints for the cause, and Abyss is basically Kane if you replaced his "personality" with an actual work rate. I'm genuinely surprised TNA isn't saving this feast for next month's BIG DEAL show. I guess this is just the sort of effusive generosity Total Non-stop Action wrestling is known for.
I wish I could look away. I really do. I have things to do on Sunday. But here's Raven, and here's Abyss and Spike Dudley, and here's me buying the stupid Pay-Per-View.
Friday, September 15, 2006
Anyway, welcome back Raven. We're glad you're not still clumping around after Larry Zbyszko. We'd also like to point out that we never made fun of your weight, not once. Besides, compared to Jeff Hardy, you're actually pretty fucking svelte.
Tuesday, September 12, 2006
Ladies and Gentlemen, a wrestling enthusiast must learn to take pleasure from small victories. The life of a WWE viewer, in particular, closely resembles a barren desert, punctuated by lush oases of quality. An Umaga desert, if you will, with Mick Foley oases. Again, only if you will. The wary traveller will only enter this desert when heavily stocked with provisions, for these must carry him through the wasteland.
So it was that last night found me, well-stocked with sixteen-ounce cans of malted beverage, wading intrepidly through the grim landscape of Monday Night RAW. I had anticipated quite the lengthy slog, and was packed densely with fluids. Then, a-suddenly, I came upon a hitherto uncharted oasis. Super Crazy. Versus "The Masterpiece" Chris Masters (seen in the picture on the left, which is approximately twice his current size). For the second week in a row.
A rematch between two perpetual midcarders, one dwarfed by his legendary past and one dwarfed by his own steroid-addled former self, seemed an unlikely place for quality to nestle, but Lo! I found myself riveted by this match. No, it wasn't quite as intense as their match from last week, but it was notable for two things: Masters displayed his newly adequate work rate, and Super Crazy won. Again.
I admit, Facebuster Fans, that one huge part of my aversion to Smackdown! stems from their mistreatment of Super Crazy and Psicosis (the [shudder] Mexicools). Taking two blindingly fast, savagely insane luchadores and shafting them with an inane ultra-racist gimmick (making them ride to the ring on LAWNMOWERS, f'r fuck's sake) seemed the ultimate insult to true wrestling fans. We at Arabian Facebuster have long lamented the loss of Old School ECW's "international flavor", and The Mexicools were the final insulting nail in an appallingly bigoted coffin. So it was with great surprise that I witnessed my beloved Super Crazy actually winning a match! Against a White Boy, of all things!
Which brings me (at last!) to a bit of advice for the WWE. If you expect me to cross the Racist Throwback Umaga Desert every goddamn week, there's only one oasis from which to sup. The Super Crazy/Masters Oasis. The oasis in which Super Crazy cuts that cracker on his stupid cracker face.
Wednesday, September 06, 2006
Which is not to say I care about ECW more than I do about TNA. The very idea is absurd. One halfway decent tag match cannot wash away three months of Big Shew main events, and Kevin Thorn and his inflatable girlfriend are still skulking around giving each other "very sexual" Tarot Readings.
Still and all, it was quite nice to see Test and Mike Knox finally finding their niche in ECW. Not every performer aspires to be a dull-witted-but-durable punching bag for a pair of pilled-up sociopaths, but who am I to question Mr. Knox's career path? And while Arabian Facebuster would never condone steroid abuse, it's worth noting that Test took some pretty hefty punishment during the match and emerged none the worse for wear. So what if he can't really feel his skin anymore and his testicles seem to have retreated into his cheekbones? Rob Van Dam can throw a steel chair directly into Test's face, and Test barely even blinks. Of course, he CAN'T blink because if he closes his eyes he sees an infinite lake of fire consuming all of existence (I understand Scott Steiner has a similar problem), but blinking isn't exactly EXTREME, now is it?
So thumbs up to ECW for a lovely evening. I particularly enjoyed puffy-faced crybaby Shannon Moore, and I hope to see more of him when I (yes, I admit it) tune in next week.
Friday, September 01, 2006
The thing is, you've changed. I'm not trying to blame you, but ever since you've been back, it's like you don't really care about me anymore. I keep making excuses to all my friends, saying stuff like, "They're booking shitty matches on PURPOSE so we'll all get really excited when they finally stage a Pay-Per-View and Sabu beats Big Show and the matches get good again and we'll hold each other's hands and kiss and it'll be just like before and...". I guess it does sound pretty pathetic. Everyone tries to tell me that you're just not that into quality wrestling anymore, and I guess that's pretty true. It breaks my heart to admit it, but the reason I haven't talked about this on Arabian Facebuster until now is that I've been ashamed. I knew I was being duped, but I just wanted to believe in you SO MUCH. I guess I let myself be fooled.
You can't even look at me, can you? It's alright, I know all about Vince McMahon. I know he can give you things I can't. Things like TV contracts, jobs, and a way out of total bankruptcy. All I can give you is twenty-five bucks for the world's ugliest Terry Funk t-shirt, the odd DVD sale if your merch is on clearance at Sam Goody, and a promise to buy every other Pay-Per-View as long as they don't get too shitty. It hurts me to know that Vince's money means that much to you, but I understand. I just want you to know that I feel betrayed.
Also, there's... um, I don't know how to put this, but there's someone else. Don't take that tone with me, it's obvious you don't even care about me anymore. I've been watching TNA pretty much every week, and it's been great. We make each other really, really happy. We can talk like adults. We can compromise (I put up with one Scott Steiner promo a week, and TNA gives me Christopher Daniels' bleeding head whenever I want). We can have a one hour TV program that contains more than six minutes of WATCHABLE FUCKING WRESTLING.
I'm sorry. I shouldn't have raised my voice. I'm just frustrated and upset. I thought we had something once, and it hurts me to have to let it go. I'd like it if we could still be friends. Heck, maybe I'll even get one of your Pay-Per-Views sometime, just so we can keep in touch. I just can't stand to watch your crappy show week after week. Not when there's a federation out there that gives me what I need. Not when you're hanging out with vampires, meth addicts, and convicts (actually, I don't mind about the convicts. Them boys got a bum rap). Not when Spike "Brother Runt" Dudley just had a Ten Thousand Thumbtacks match against The Monster Abyss that ended with Abyss going through two (!) tables laden with the aforementioned thumbtacks.
I know you'll be okay. You're going to make some new fans very happy someday. It's getting late. I have to go. Listen, I'll call you, alright?
Thursday, August 31, 2006
Wednesday, August 30, 2006
- CM Punk and Stevie Richards had a well paced, nice little back and forth six minute match. In fact, I think that was the best undercard match in the history of ECW . . . on Sci Fi.
- There were no images of Test or Mike Knox on my tv screen.
- "Angry Amish Chicken Plucker" Roadkill has left ECW to pursue a career as a Deputy Officer with the Atlantic City Police Department. His position as "House Show Jobber to the Extremists" will be covered on an interim basis by Danny Doring and Justin Credible. In an ironic twist, one of Roakill's first assignments on the force was to protect Shane McMahon as he confronted Degeneration X this past Monday night on RAW. While we lament the loss, we here at Arabian Facebuster wish Roadkill the best in his future endeavors.
- Shannon Moore is never going to actually wrestle -- execuse me, offer the fans his own inimitable style of sports entertainment -- in ECW. Instead, he is going to permanently cut 3 second promos propagating platitudes and disingenuous advice (i.e. "Fight the Power") from an undisclosed backstage location each and every Tuesday night. Now that's fucking punk.
- Did I actually just watch another segment promoting John Cena's new critically acclaimed box office blockbuster The Marine? This movie won't even be in theatres until mid-October. Prediction: the WWEs hype and promotion of The Marine will make me long for the days of the John Karr media blitzkrieg. Or for a sequel to See No Evil.
- The Big Show should never again be allowed to deliver a crotch-cop in public, yet alone a series of crotch-chops. Never. Again.
Monday, August 28, 2006
Time for some more 1980s wrestling history disseminated via quotations. Yesterday, instead of reading my usual periodicals -- The Journal of Comparative Politics, American Prospect, Tricycle, and Tiger Beat -- I decided to thumb through some older Apter magazines. As most of the loyal readers of Arabian Facebuster know, Apter rags (Pro Wrestling Illustrated, The Wrestler, Inside Wrestling, Sports Review Wrestling, etc.) are legendary for their made up interviews with wrestlers (always in character) and fake letters to the editor and fan/rube/mark correspondence. Yes, kayfabe was alive in well in professional wrestling magazine publishing in the 1980s. This particular issue of Sports Review Wrestling covers the matches, angles, feuds, and all around silliness in pro wrestling, circa November 1986 . . . with none other than the Ugandan Giant Kamala on the cover. Onto the quotes.
--"I loved your special section on the Top 50 [wrestlers] in the WWF . . . [however] Adrian Adonis should have been number 40 at best. Number 19 is ridiculous because this fat homo has no wrestling ability whatsoever." Letter to the Editor from Russell Welch, Philadelphia PA. Welch currently serves as the Communications Director for Sen. Rick Santorum's reelection campaign.
--"I'm a very enthusiastic and zealous black teenage fan of the WWF, UWF, and NWA . . . Speaking of all of the fiery wrestling fury in the NWA, why not do more cover stories on The Kansas Jayhawks? Bobby Jaggers and Dutch Mantell are loaded with dynamite wrestling maneuvers and scientific knowledge, combined with cunning, brawling skills, stamina, brute strength, and great courage." Letter to the Editor from Kenneth Williams, Chicago IL. Seconds after this letter was mailed: (1) The Kansas Jayhawks, after countless failed attempts to defeated Ivan Koloff and Krusher Kruschev for the US Tag Titles, vanished from the NWA; (2) Williams was arrested by Chicago's finest for the possession and usage of crack cocaine.
--"If what everybody is saying to me is correct, I'll be wrestling -- even dominating the sport -- for the next 20 years. I appreciate the complements, but have to follow my own conscience." Babyface Lex Luger responding to the question of the month "Do you yourself still wrestling 10 years from now?" Sadly, for millions of Lex Luger fans across the county, the prognostications of his collegues and contemporaries proved false.
--"One Man Gang is considered one of the worst technical wrestlers in the sport, but he has two things going for him: 468 pounds and a killer instinct nurtured while growing up on the streets of Chicago." Sports Review Wrestling futilely tries to explain why the One Man Gang has somehow retained the UWF Heavyweight Championship despite the relentless challenge from Dr. Death Steve Williams.
--Bill Apter: "Tony, you're incredible. All of these years in the sport and you're in better shape than ever. How do you do it?" Tony Atlas: "Thanks Bill. You have to remember, my man, that I'm a former Mr. USA and I have a certain responsibility to that title. It wouldn't look too good now if Mr. USA was walking around with a beer belly and flabby arms, would it?" Tony Atlas argues persuasively that the most effective way to maintain one's strapping physique is to capture the title of Mr. USA and use its psychologically imposing sense of prestige and obligation to fend off the flab. Take note, Jeff Hardy.
--"The two grapplers then locked up in a fight that, if unchecked, promised to go on to the death." Non-hyperbolic recap of the Starrcade 1986 main event for the NWA World Title, Ric Flair vs. Niktia Koloff. Both men were disqualified for shoving referees. Thankfully, wrestlers from the back separated the two grapplers before any in-ring fatalities could occur.
--"The Hulk Hogan-Kamala war is sure to go down in history as being distinguished by uncommon levels of sadism, brutality, and viciousness. Wrestling skills don't count here. It's survival of the fittest. If Charles Darwin were alive, the WWF's front office celebrity-hunters might enlist him as a special referee -- that is if he wasn't completely astounded by the very fact of the Ugandan giant's existence. Indeed, Kamala's existence is a riddle. He is a pure savage, a throwback to the time when jungle instincts ruled the world." Sports Review Wrestling envisaging the unprecedented level of violence that would occur once the cowardly Hulkster finally climbed into the ring with the barbaric Kamala. Fortunately, we now know that streaming bland, home-recorded music across the internet is the only known distraction capable of taming Kamala's cannibalistic instinct and primordial thirst to bludgeon and disfigure any stranger that dares cross his path.
Thursday, August 24, 2006
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
My sainted mother has observed that, based on my humble scribblings, the casual reader could be forgiven for assuming that all modern wrestlers are out-of-shape doughballs. I accept that this criticism is more than accurate, and I have resolved to steer my postings into more physically fit waters. Perhaps I'll do a piece on that nice Ron Killings fellow. Unfortunately for my new dedication to muscle mass, Jeff Nero Hardy made his triumphant return to the WWE on last night's RAW.
Holy crap on a Christmas cracker, that fucking mallrat looked bloated.
It's worth noting that the above picture is NOT from last night. Why this inexcusable lapse from YOUR Arabian Facebuster, a website renowned for its dedication to the bleeding edge of modern grappling? Because you can't find a current picture of this fat load ANYWHERE. I suspect that Vince McMahon's jackbooted thugs are entering the homes of all the photographers who attended last night's RAW taping, under orders to destroy the negatives. Yes, even the Japanese photo corps.
So, on to the fatness. Hardy raced out to confront Edge over some foofaraw or other. Doesn't matter. All that matters is that Jeff's once-taut tummy ballooned far beyond the confines of his spandex shirt, forcing itself outward, ever outward into the harsh glare of the arena lights. It was a grim and pasty thing. It's particularly unfortunate that Jeff's shtick consists almost entirely of raising his arms dramatically. Jeff greets the crowd with a raised fist. Tummy. Jeff thrusts his arm out before performing a "twist of fate." Tummy. Jeff does his extreme "my fingers look like guns" pose before executing the Swanton Bomb (kudos to the Pencil Neck Geek for pointing out that it should be rechristened "The Swanson Bomb"). TUMMY TUM TUM!
So Hardy retreated to the back to gear up for his match with Edge. When he came back out, some sage production assistant had slipped a t-shirt under the goddamn spandex. Anonymous production assistant: Arabian Facebuster salutes your wisdom. Sure, it bunched up around Jeff's flabby middle like a Sumo Diaper, but at least we were spared further glimpses of the Tum.
Listen, I'm no Adonis. Summerslam was on this weekend, so I've been sticking to a strict regimen of chicken parts and cheap beer. BUT, if I were to suddenly find myself booked in my first televised match in SEVEN MONTHS, I'd do some damn crunches. Maybe I'd jog around the block a few times.
Now, I am not knocking Jeff's in-ring ability. He seems perfectly capable of remaining upright, and The Swanson Bomb was capably executed, even though he seemed to be sucking on a Chiclet the whole time (I guess he's gotta keep that blood sugar up). I'm just saying that if Jeff's going to keep making his own outfits (true!) he should either get a personal trainer or a more realistic self-image. And spit out that Chiclet. He's gonna choke on that thing.
Thursday, August 17, 2006
"The Ragin' Bull" Manny Fernandez vs. Randy & Bill Mulkey. The Great American Bash, July 31, 1987; Orange Bowl, Miami FL.
Sweet sweet rare hand-held footage of Fernandez (managed by Paul Jones) vs. The Mulkey Brothers, possibly the greatest jobber twin brothers in the history of our sport (nod to Tony Schavonie). You'll be happy you wasted 2:30 of your life watching this!
The backstory: Rick Rude had fled Jim Crockett Promotions for the greener pastures of Vince McMahon's sports entertainment juggernaut several weeks prior. Rude and Fernandez were tag team champs at the time of the Ravishing One's departure, thereby forcing a hasty NWA World Tag Team Title change (I believe a phantom one at that to the Rock and Roll Express) and leaving Fernandez with nothing better to do as the month long Great American Bash tour rolled around than kick the crap out of jobbers (like the Mulkeys) and join forces with Ivan Koloff and the Barbarian in six man tag team action against the Fabulous Freebirds.
This clipped handicap match is a total squash with the Mulkeys' getting in no offense, eventually succumbing to the merciless physical onslaught of solidly and fairly stiffly delivered punches, chops, headbutts, and elbow smashes. I sincerely hope that Fernandez took whichever Mulkey brother was on the receiving end of that back body drop out for a steak and a lap dance (or twelve) afterwards, because he made Bull look like a million bucks . . . although I'm sure the other brother would find a way to tag along and mooch an order of prime rib and a trip to the salad bar off of the lumpy yet gregarious veteran.
While Fernandez's blue collar gut, B-cup man boobs, dumpy ass, partially bleached mullet, and "violent offender recently released from prison" ethos would never permit him the opportunity to follow Rude "up north" and have an oversized rubber action figure produced in his image, I am certain that the Ragin' Bull slept soundly at night knowing that his competently executed offensive moveset put food on the table for his family and a heroic quantity of cocaine, painkillers, and Wild Turkey shots into his system.
More on the Mulkey's later . . .
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
However, imagine for a moment a world devoid of digital grappling delights streaming into your home at the effortless touch of a button. Picture a strange parallel dimension, where one must endlessly position a pair of long metal rods over their television, looking to appease the spirits of the airwaves long enough to transmit a grainy approximation of the Boogeyman into their living room. A technology deficient hell on earth that Ted Turner fought so hard to liberate us from. Barring yet another viewing of my ‘87 Jim Crockett Sr. Memorial Cup tape, this is what I must endure each time I sit down to enjoy the pleasures of professional wrestling in the comfort of my home.
Join me, if you will, as I step forward to celebrate a quaint and rapidly disappearing way of life. Free TV kicks, courtesy of Vince McMahon and UPN. Of course, SmackDown airs on Friday night and I have a busy social schedule (read: drinking problem) to maintain. No problem. Another relic quickly fading from our collective consciousness, the Video Cassette Recorder, will ensure hours of hung over wrestling delights come Saturday morn. Some thoughts:
Actual wrestling. Ring entrances that last 1 minute and matches that last 10 minutes (as compared to the other way around on Raw). An interesting mix of ambitious newcomers and seasoned journeymen getting their shot at national exposure, thanks in no small part to abnormal liver function amongst many SmackDown Superstars. Finlay and Regal wrestling main event matches!? Certainly not anyone’s dream card, but totally solid and certainly better than anything featuring Umaga. All that, plus the good King Bookah doing some mind-boggling work at the announcer’s table. Somehow, Booker managed to deliver lighting speed play-by-play commentary while never once dropping his Red Foxx lost in Camelot shtick. What more do you want? Oh yeah, there’s a REAL LIVE LEPRECHAUN living under the ring!
Undertaker vs. the Great Khali. Allow me to recap. Undertaker: Punch, punch, punch, punch, punch, punch. Khali: Choke slam attempt. Undertaker: Choke slam attempt blocked, choke slam. End. A match so riveting, Commissioner Teddy Long wasted no time in booking a re-match next week.
Vickie Guerrero. Ugh. Not as soul-crushingly brutal as Melanie Pillman‘s appearance on RAW the night after her husbands death, but every bit as creepy and repellent. Although I generally encourage as much bad taste as possible from Vinnie Mac and Co., this makes me feel like a grade-A shit heel for even watching. Could the WWE possibly sink lower in capitalizing on Eddie’s death? Look out little Dominic, a Chavo kidnapping angle is inevitable. Fans should also be on the lookout for Kane vs. the Ghost of Eddie in the spring of 2007.
To conclude, SmackDown was, um, not as terrible as you may think. Come Friday night, you know you can find parked in front of the fuzzy glow SmackDown. That, or unconscious in a puddle of my own filth.
Typical evening. Second Hour RAW Torpor. A muscle in my jaw starts twitching unconsciously. Sports "Entertainment" in full effect, and my eye creeps toward the remote control. The "Channel Up" button beckons. With just the tiniest effort, I could be watching Yetis devour someone on the SciFi network, if only... damn this journalistic integrity.
And. Then. "Tomorrow Night, on ECW! Kurt Angle! Rob Van Dam! And Sabu! In! A! Number! One! Contender! LADDER MATCH!!!!!" A chill runs through my tired frame, and I surge back to life. Like a complete sucker, I start Marking Out With Tremendous Force.
Look, kids, I know there's no way this debacle can possibly live up to my expectations. It's a new-school ECW main event on basic cable, a tease for Big Shew's Summerslam title defense, and as such sure to end in some form of unsatisfying Shew antics (are there any other kind?). I debased myself by getting all worked up for last week's Angle/Sabu shrug, and I probably shouldn't go down that road again, but this match MATTERS. Because if Sabu doesn't win, we riot.
Look, I've already committed to Summerslam. The Iron City is in the fridge, the wings are in the sauce, the cable company's obscenely large check is in the mail (you'd think that using Comcast's internet provider to cover their PPV product would entitle me to a discount, but no such luck). I'm watching this turd, and you can't stop me. Other than Flair/Foley and (to a much lesser extent) Mysterio/Guerrero, the ONLY match that registers on the give-a-shit-o-meter is Shew versus whoever. And I assure you, if "whoever" ain't Sabu, I'm tossing bricks.
Allow me to run it down: Angle versus Shew equals pure agony. Shew no-sells everything Angle does, Angle grits his teeth, rolls around on the mat, and looks faintly embarassed at having to carry yet another underworking joke through a main event.
RVD versus Shew is marginally better, but Van Dam hasn't been back from his suspension long enough to build any heat. Look for RVD to pinball uselessly around the ring while Shew does his tiresome "mighty oak in a gale" routine. Maybe a few awkwardly executed high spots, but that's it.
Sabu, however, stands a very real chance of finally getting all that beautiful blood out of the Big Shew. I'm not naive enough to think Our Man Sabu can actually get the strap off the Isle of Wight, but he could inject some badly-needed heat into the equation. ECWWWE's been building the feud between these two for WEEKS, and the few remaining old-school ECW fans are chomping at the bit to see Sabu hurt Shew. There's the beauty of this combo, frankly. Sabu doesn't have to win at Summerslam to keep the diehards happy (thank god, 'cos it's not going to happen). He just has to hurt the Big Shew really, really, bad. Hopefully he can reestablish ECW as a risk-taking promotion in the process, perhaps by shattering his own spine halfway through the match, fixing himself up with a bit of twine and a paperclip, and then dropping th' facebuster on Shew through a flaming barbed wire exploding glass tack table. That ought to do the trick rather nicely.
Monday, August 14, 2006
Friday, August 11, 2006
As many of the Arabian Facebuster contributors know, I love the National Wrestling Alliance (circa 1986-1989) for its realism, quality wrestling matches, rabidly loyal and passionate fans, distinctively southern feel, and compelling alternative vision to the professional wrestling experience from the WWF. And in 1989, despite Ted Turner's acquisition of the promotion from Jim Crockett and subsequent purge of long-time stars like Tully Blanchard, Arn Anderson, Barry Windham, and Dusty Rhodes, the NWA continued to churn out a great product, in large thanks to Ric Flair's feuds with Ricky Steamboat and Terry Funk, along with a motivated "Total Package" Lex Luger, spunky Sting, and competitive tag team division with the Road Warriors, Steiner Brothers, Midnight Express, and Fabulous Freebirds. After Flair defeated Funk at the Great American Bash in July, he was brutally attacked by Terry Funk and the Great Muta. Sting came in to save the champion, setting up the red-hot main event tag match of Flair/Sting vs. Funk (actually, it turned out to be Dick Slater)/Muta for Clash VIII.
Seeing as how I had yesterday evening free (prior to the Impact Zone on Spike TV, of course), I thought I would pop my tape of Clash VIII in the VCR to relive some fond NWA memories while trying to lobotomize the last 24 months of WWE programming . . . while watching, I couldn't help but smile at some of the comments and commentary from Jim Ross, a then-face James E. Cornette, and Gordon Solie, who was conducting interviews in the back, notwithstanding the wrestlers themselves. So instead of offering the dear readers of Arabian Facebuster a tedious blow-by-blow recap of the action and longwinded explanation as to the context of each match/feud, I thought I would offer a summary of Clash VIII via quotes.
--"Paul E. Dangerously, he has had more trouble keeping these Samoans in line ever since he's had 'em. They're wild beasts . . . the Samoan people naturally are fierce warriors; they are a war-like people and are uncontrollable." Jim Cornette: (a) explaining the Paul E. Dangerously's futility at retrying to regroup the Samoan Swat Team after an offensive flurry by Road Warrior Animal and (b) providing additional evidence to support Apollo Spas' argument that Umaga is racist throwback. The Road Warriors would go onto to defeat the SST.
-- "Ranger Ross is no stranger to adversity . . . he was in the mission on
--"The white man came and took his land, but one brave warrior wouldn't give up without the fight of his life. Burt Lancaster -- Apache! 8:05 ET on TBS Thursday night." Commercial for the TBS Thursday night movie. Native American Hero Tatanka would be proud. Native American Turncoat Tatanka would not.
--"It would be poetic justice if Michael Hayes got his head shaved, because the way he treats that hair is a crime." Jim Cornette during the Freebirds match against the Steiner Brothers. Ironically, Michael Hayes/Dox Hendrix's hair loss would become painfully obvious by 1991, even to denialists like tag team partner Jimmy "Jam" Garvin, roadie Little Richard Marley, and tour manager Big Daddy Dink.
--"Lex Luger transcends just being the US Heavyweight Champion, he transcends the sport itself. Lex Luger is bigger than wrestling itself. Lex Luger is the greatest athlete to grace the ring that has ever come along." Lex Luger shows aspiring young wrestlers how to effectively and resolutely communicate in the third-person in a pre-match interview with Gordon Solie.
--"I have a million dollar body. I have a multi-million dollar intellect. And you combine those with the desire and capacity to win at any cost, then the Total Package Lex Luger is unbeatable." More Luger with Solie. Luger's self-assured prediction would be proven correct against Tommy Rich.
--"The Great Muta has got to be figurin' what in the world is going on . . . I'm sitting smack dab in the middle of South Carolina, a long way from Tokyo, it's Ric Flair Day, the people have their faces painted like Sting, their howlin' and wooo-in' -- and he's got to be wonderin' why he ever left Japan." Jim Cornette pondering on the thoughts of the Great Muta as Sting dominates him in the early going of the tag-team main event.
--"Terry Funk is here . . . He's put a plastic bag over Ric Flair! Flair will not be able to breathe! He's tying it off! Funk is deranged; he's tying it off!" Jim Ross showing righteous indignation at the interference and actions of Terry Funk. Flair and Sting would defeat Slater and Muta by disqualification.
--"This is the most horrible thing I have ever seen happen. Flair was down on the ground from that platic bag attack from Terry Funk. Brian Pillman was the first one to his side, I believe he gave him mouth-to-mouth resuscitation." Jim Cornette in the aftermath of the carnage. It is not clear whether Cornette's comments were a reference to Funk trying to murder Ric Flair on prime time cable television or the sight of Flyin' Brian's prolonged kisses of life to the mouth of the unconscious six time world champion.