Here is my on-going script for the movie "Shuffle". Which is a combination of Hackers and The Wizard and just about every 80's and 90's movie under the sun dealing with new fads and teenagers. This is inspired by the movie Quicksilver with Kevin Bacon, a movie about riding bicycles really fast. I hope to shop it to Apple and get millions for it.
A taxi is driving down the highway, music is playing. We see the protagonist, Josh Smalls, in the back. He looks uncomfortable and nervous. Several shots of Josh and the taxi, along with shots of the city, as the credits roll. Finally Josh speaks up:
Smalls: Could you change the station, please?
Smalls: The station, could you change it? I’ve heard this song so many times already.
Driver: No, no change. It is the same thing all over. See? See?
The driver changes the station to reveal the same song playing. Smalls rolls his eyes and continues to look out the window.
The taxi pulls up to a suburban house and Josh gets out and pays the driver. But it is not enough.
Smalls: Sorry, it’s all I have.
The driver leaves, obviously pissed off.
Josh knocks on the door but no one answers. He knocks again. No one answers. He tries to open the door, but it is locked. He looks around and ends up going around the house to the back. He sees a patio door open and he enters to loud music.
Smalls (trying to yell over the music): HELLO?! HELLO???
He walks around the house, trying to move towards the music. He finds a record player and turns it off. Immediately, two people rush in.
Uncle: What happened to the music?
Aunt: I don’t know; it just stopped.
They see Josh standing there with the plug in his hand.
Aunt: Oh, hello Josh. We didn’t expect you here so soon.
Josh: Yeah, my flight was a few hours early. Sorry about turning off the music, Aunt Marigold.
Uncle: Oh it’s no problem Josh.
Aunt: Your uncle Pete and I were just listening to one of our favourite albums.
Josh: Why was it so loud?
Uncle: Well it has to be loud, how else can you take the music with you around the house?
Aunt: Now, you must be hungry and tired after such a long trip from Chicago. We’ll get you some dinner and show you your room. You have a big day tomorrow.
Uncle: First day of school. Big day.
Josh: Yeah… big day…
Josh is in his new bedroom, unpacking his belongings. He pulls out a framed picture, of himself and his family. He looks down, sadly. He then clutches on to his neck lace that is under his shirt. His aunt comes in and sees him looking at the picture.
Aunt: It is unfortunate what happened to your parents, Josh. They loved you very much. My sister, she…
Josh: If they loved me so much… why did they have to go?
Aunt: I can’t answer that Josh, no one can... no one ever knows… have a good rest, big day tomorrow…
A school is shown. Students busy, moving around, in groups. Lots of shots of students listening to music w. head phones. Every student, infact. Josh enters the building and looks lost. He tries to ask people for directions.
Josh: Do you know? Do you know where? Science class? Science? Do you?
In the confusion he ends up bumping into a girl, Kate, knocking both of their books down.
Josh: Oh jeez, I’m sorry.
Josh: (louder) I’m SORRY.
Kate takes off her head phones.
Josh: I’M.. sorry.
Kate: Nah, it’s cool. Hey, you’re new here, aren’t you?
Josh: How can you tell?
Kate: I’m psychic.
Kate: Nah, you just have that new kid look.
Josh: Yeah. Hey, maybe you could help me? Do you know where Mr. Franklins class is? Science?
Kate: Yeah, I was just headin there, c’mon I’ll show you.
Josh: Thanks. Here, (picks up her books), your books.
Kate: Oh, these ain’t books.
They start to move forward. She opens the books to reveal compartments for various accessories.
Kate: I have my pills in there, docks, cases, speakers, socks, camera, av..
Josh: Then how do you study?
Kate: I have Science, Algebra, Shakespeare; all the texts in audio format. All loaded up on my 'pod.
Josh: You’re what?
The last comment gets muted out as they enter the class.
Class is over and Josh is walking through the halls. Kate catches up to him.
Kate: So, what do you have next?
Josh: Um, I have this break period.
Kate: Hey, me too. Here, come on, let me introduce you to the gang.
They enter the cafeteria where they see a group of people lounging around. There is a black guy, Crafton, a Mexican, Luiz, an Asian chick, Alice, and a crazy white boy, Derrick.
Crafton: I am telling you, the E-30 pills are the absolute best on the market.
Luiz: The market? Dude, Crafton, those are ILLEGAL.
Crafton: Hey, the black market is still a market. Are you telling me, Luiz, that just because it’s black it shouldn’t be considered a market?
Derrick: That’s EXACTLY what he’s saying, man.
Luiz: I am not saying that at all, Derrick. Listen. It’s illegal. Those pills have really messed some peoples heads up.
Derrick: Hey, all I know man, is that those things have me ringing man, for days, man. It’s a trip, bros.
Crafton: That’s what I’m saying, they are the best. Now, you in? Or you going to wuss out AGAIN.
Kate: What’s goin on, fellas?
Alice: Crafton and Luiz are arguing over which pills are the best.
Kate: Come on guys, we all know the E-30’s are the best.
Crafton: THAT’S WHAT I’M SAYIN!
Crafton hits Luiz.
Derrick: Hey, who’s the bumpkin?
Kate: Oh, sorry. Guys, this is Josh. Josh, this is the pill heads.
Josh: Pills as in…
Alice: Pills that go in the ear, not the mouth.
Kate: Headphones, Josh.
Kate: Though sometimes with Derrick, there’s other kind of pills.
Derrick: Perfectly legal ones Katie. Over the counter and under my tongue.
Alice: Which ones you on today?
Derrick: Today is Friday, so that is Purple, Red, Greens, and, uuuh, Orange.
Crafton: Today is Monday, man.
Derrick: Oh sh- no wonder everything is in a shade of blue…
Luiz: What else did you think it was?
Derrick: I thought they just changed the lighting, man. Oh man… I’m really messed up right now, I’ll see you guys later.
Derrick leaves, but as he is going he bumps into Freeware and his crew.
Freeware: Watch where you’re going burn-out.
Derrick: Sorry dude, I’m just…
Freeware: In my way? I know, now get out.
Derrick gets up and leaves.
Freeware: Hey Kate.
Kate: Get bent, Freebie.
Freeware: It’s Freeware. You know that.
Crafton: She also knows your breath smells like old socks. Why you eatin socks anyways, bro?
Freeware ignores Crafton.
Freeware: So, you goin to the dance Friday night, Kate?
Kate: Yeah. With him.
Kate puts her arm around Josh.
Freeware: And who is him?
Josh: Uh, Josh Smalls.
Josh puts out his hand for a shake.
Freeware ignores it.
Freeware: What you doin with this 5-1-2, Kate?
Kate: None of your business, Freebie..
Freeware: If I wanted your opinion, Pedro, I’d pay you well under minimum wage for it.
Luiz jumps up.
Kate: Hey, cool it. Listen, Freebie. Why don’t you and your crew go and shine up your 30 gig video pods.
Freeware: Oh, it’s 60 gigs now.
Kate: Whatever, get outta here.
Freeware: You don’t tell me where to go, Kate. I’m not just a song on your playlist that you can shuffle around.
Kate: And you never will be.
Freeware grabs Kate by the arm
Josh immediately jumps and pushes him off. The crew moves in as well as the pill heads but before things escalate Principal Taylor enters and breaks things up.
Kate: Hey, thanks.
Josh: Well, I figured since you’re my girl now, what with this dance and everything, I might as well be chivalrous.
Kate: Well, that was just for show.
Josh: You guys went out?
Kate: Once, in like junior high. He’s been thinking I’m his ever since.
Josh: What a jerk. Why do you call him Freeware?
Crafton: The dude gets everything for free. He’s a pirate. He’ll download music off the internet from these pirate sites or upload his own and spreads them around like a virus for a small fee. He doesn’t care, man. He’s in it for the money, not the science.
Luiz: His stuff is low quality, doesn’t even sound like the original albums.
Alice: And it’s all traceable. The feds could come down here any day and take all our pods away to see who has illegal music on their player.
Crafton: I don’t want the man knowin what I got on my shuffle, no way.
Luiz: Yeah, no one wants to know what you got on your shuffle. There’s only so many John Denver songs out there.
Josh: Pods? Shuffle? Denver? What are you guys talking about?
Alice: You don’t know?
Josh: No, what’s a pod?
Kate: An Ipod. It’s a portable music listening device.
Crafton: Only the finest creation on the planet, next to myself.
Alice: It stores digital music. Depending on the pod, you can get hundreds of songs on just one player.
Luiz: It’s so sleek and sexy, everyone has one. I don’t know how you can live with out it.
Josh: How do you get the music?
Kate: Itunes, preferably. They have the most titles, the best sound quality, the easiest access.
Alice: Plus it’s legal. They have deals set up with the record companies, so the artists can get paid for their work.
Crafton: But then you have dudes like Freeware who ruin it for us, guys who have us lookin over our shoulder cause the feds be on our backs.
Luiz: It’s just so wrong.
All of a sudden Joey runs in, huffing and puffing.
Crafton: Joey, my man, what’s goin on?
Kate realizes that Joey is in trouble.
Kate: Joey, what’s wrong?
Joey: I… it’s…
Joey looks back and sees two guys in suits enter the cafeteria.
Joey: Oh sh- HERE, TAKE THIS. DON’T LOSE IT!
Joey hands Crafton his Ipod and runs out the back door, the men in suits follow him.
Josh: What they heck was that all about?
Kate: With Joey, you never know. He probably was skateboarding outside or something.
Crafton: Boy done left his pod with us too. Probably didn’t want it to be seized. Must be your lucky day bump, here, you can use Joeys.
Josh: Uh, thanks. How do you use it?
Kate: It’s so easy, let me show you.
Before Kate can show him, the principal walks in.
Principal: Josh Smalls, come with me to my office, please.
Principal: Luiz, zip it.
Josh is in Principal Taylors office, sitting across from him.
Principal: So, Josh, how has your first day been going.
Principal: Cause I see you’ve already gotten into a fight with one student, and you’re hanging around a bunch of nogoodnicks.
Josh: Nogoodnicks, sir?
Principal: Yeah, those “pill heads”. They do nothing but listen to music all day. In class, in the halls, all over. Those damn pods are so small that it’s hard to detect them, so they can take them anywhere. It distracts from their learning, Josh. And I don’t want them distracting you from yours. I know your situation, your parents. Josh, it’s very unfortunate and I don’t want you heading down that path too, you hear me?
Josh: Yeah, I hear ya.
Principal: Good, now I see you have Math now. Better hurry up or you’ll be late.
The Second Biggest Storyline Ever: UFC Invasion
UFC, SPIKETV, and TNA have a synergistic relationship with each other. Currently, SPIKE has grouped TNA and UFC in the same television block on Thursday Nights, with the idea that there is a crossover fan that watches The Ultimate Fighter and will stay around to see Impact. The following storyline will take advantage of this relationship. See, this angle takes place directly after the TUF finale, which means UFC will not have any television aside from UFC Unleashed –which is a collection of fights that already happened- and the odd Ultimate Fight Night Live, so they are able to keep their name and face on TV on a regular basis. And TNA gets the rub off the UFC.
Of course, UFC fans will probably hate it because Pro Wrestling would taint the sport, and TNA fans would hate it because they are not familiar with MMA. But I like this story, and it is a complete rip-off of the NWO invasion… which was a rip-off of the UWF-i/NJPW feud… and UWF-I was a fake shoot group whose head guy – Nobuhiko Takada – was the biggest star in PRIDE during its formative years, and UWF-I also produced one of the greatest fighters ever in Kazushi Sakuraba. The point? Well, there isn’t one… cept that things kinda have a way of coming full circle.
In June, The Ultimate Fighter will be having its finale. The TUF 2 finale drew one of the highest ratings for the UFC with a 2.0 and the TUF 1 finale was the first time the UFC was on national television live and will be remembered for the amazing fight between Forrest Griffin and Stephan Bonnar. This is where the angle begins.
The UFC likes to have a main event on the card, along with the two finals (Middleweight and Lightweight division finals). They like to feature interviews with celebrities and whatnot that are in attendance in regards to the main event.
*On TUF 3 Finale*
Joe Rogan: I’m here with Samoa Joe from TNA Impact, which will be following this show on SPIKETV at 11pm EST. Joe, how are you likin the fights tonight?
Samoa Joe: It’s been a great night of fights, lots of action, I’m enjoyin it a lot. I’ve got a martial arts background myself, I like to incorporate some MMA stuff into my matches, so I’m havin a blast watching this stuff live.
Joe Rogan: So who do you think is going to win between Fighter X and Fighter Y?
Samoa Joe: Well, Fighter X is this. But Fighter Y is that. It doesn’t really matter, though, I could take them both out.
Joe Rogan: You’ve got to be kidding me.
Samoa Joe: Nah. Put them in a wrestling ring with me, and I’d have them tapping out in no time.
Joe Rogan (with a bewildered look on his face): Ooook, Professional Wrestler Samoa Joe thinks he can beat Fighter X and Y, back to you Goldie.
Joe Rogan: So Dana, we had TNA Pro Wrestler Samoa Joe on earlier saying he could beat both X and Y, what are you comments on this?
Dana White: So what? That’s professional wrestling. It’s ridiculous. You will never see a UFC fighter in a TNA ring. That’s all that needs to be said on it.
*On the TNA show after TUF 3 finale*
Mike Tenay: Welcome everyone to TNA Impact, your 60 minute adrenaline rush *gets a feed from his headset* Uh huh. Uh huh. WHAT? Ladies and Gentlemen I have just been notified that DANA WHITE – President of the UFC – has just called our producers in response to the shocking comments Samoa Joe made on the live telecast that aired before this show and WILL BE HERE NEXT WEEK to directly and publicly address TNA management on this issue.
Don West: WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOW! THAT IS THE MOST AMAZING INCREDIBLE THING I HAVE EVER HEARD! DANA WHITE! PRESIDENT OF THE UFC! HERE IN THE IMPACT ZONE NEXT WEEK!
*The next week*
*Dana White comes down to the ring, no music, or anything*
*Mike Tenay is in the center of the ring*
Mike Tenay: Ladies and Gentlemen, UFC president Dana White. Dana, word has it, you called SPIKETV offices immediately after Samoa Joes comments last week and demanded to be on TNA Impact this week to address those comments publicly. The good people at SPIKETV relayed the message to TNA management and producers who, because of the UFC’s relationship with SPIKE, would comply to your request. What do you want to say?
Dana White: … Are you through?... Ok… *Grabs the mic* Now, last week, a wrestler by the name of Samoa Joe came on my television programming and basically insulted my fighters by saying he could take them in a match. Now, the UFC was gracious enough to put that guy on our live show to get over this television show and get exposed to a larger audience, and in return he decides to take advantage of our goodwill and start making open challenges. If you didn’t hear what I said last week, I will say it again tonight. There will not be a UFC fighter, under contract to us, that will be in any TNA match. Our fighters are not professional wrestlers. Our fighters are real. They really hit each other, they really get hurt. UFC is as real as it gets. So I am out here tonight looking for an apology from TNA management, who I assume are not wrestlers themselves and therefore have some brains in their heads and will know how important I am and how important the UFC is to SPIKETV and will come down here and give me that apology or else I’ll go right from this building, fly over to SPIKETV offices, and get this show taken off the air. So who the hell is in charge here?
*Dixie Carter comes down*
Don West: OH MY GOODNESS! DIXE CARTER! TNA PRESIDENT! I’VE ONLY SEEN HER BEHIND THE SCENES! NEVER INFRONT OF A CAMERA BEFORE!
*Dixie steps into the ring*
Dana White: So, uh, you’re the one I should be talking to.
Dixie Carter: Yes. I am President of TNA Wrestling.
Dana White: So you’re the one I should blame for what your wrestler said on my programming? First of all, I want that guy punished. I am holding him and I am holding YOU responsible for his insulting comments and I want some punishment laid down by TNA management.
Dixie Carter: Well, first of all, I don’t really appreciate being called out here on national television. There are better ways, more professional ways, of handling things.
Dana White: Well, I figured that since your guy decided to be unprofessional on my national television show, then I should return the favour.
Dixie Carter: I see. And secondly, after considering your demands and your relationship with SPIKE, I think it would be appropriate to suspend Samoa Joe for 30 days.
Dana White: 30 days? 30 days! You’re kidding me, right? That’s what I hate about professional wrestling. In the real world, if he were one of my guys, he’d be gone for 6 months. But in this fantasy world you have, 30 days is supposed to be enough punishment? I..
Dixie Carter: .. Dana…
Dana White: Don’t interrupt me… I can’t believe this stuff is still popular. This is so stupid. I can’t believe this morons here in Florida come out and eat this stuff up. Well, on second thought, we ran a show here a few years ago and you morons couldn’t have been more useless, so maybe I can believe that you’d like this stuff.
Dixie Carter: Now Dana.
Dana White: I said SHUT UP. And you will keep your mouth shut if you know what’s good for you.
Dana White: This stuff is so fake. 30 days? Ridiculous. Samoa Joe tapping out my guys. You’re in fantasy land. The UFC is real. The real deal. This? This is all pretend. No one really gets hurt. It’s all an act. It’s all..
*Jeff Jarrett sneaks up behind Dana White and as Dana turns around JJ hits him with a guitar. Knocking Dana out.*
Don West: OH MY LORD JEFF JARRETT JUST NAILED DANA WHITE WITH A GUITAR!!!
*The next week, after replaying the previous weeks attacks*
Mike Tenay: UFC President Dana White has requested some SPIKE television time for a pre-taped announcement.
Dana White: Last week I was viciously attacked by a TNA wrestler named Jeff Jarrett. Before that I said that no UFC fighter would appear on TNA television. But when I said that, it was strictly on a professional level. A guitar shot and 12 stitches later, and this has become personal. I could go to SPIKETV and get TNA yanked off the air, but instead, instead I want to humiliate TNA. Instead I will be sending two UFC stars next week to attend a TNA Impact show, sit front row in the audience, and if they happen to cause any trouble, then so be it. I feel bad for the security guards who try to stop them.
*To Be Continued>>>*
It is very hard to classify Professional Wrestling.
It is very much a unique thing. Beyond the "pseudo-sport" and beyond "low-brow entertainment" that the mainstream would classify it as. Beyond the "art" and "morality play" that wrestling fans try to intellectualize it as. Beyond that. What professional wrestling is, is... well... professional wrestling. There isn't much you can compare it to.
The people who call it a pseudo-sport, the people who call it low-brow entertainment, the people who call it art and a morality play... they all have something there, but it's not the whole story. The goal of sport is to present a competition with winners and losers, which wrestling does present. Wrestling is pretty simple to 'get' and it does pander to the lowest common denominator. Wrestling tells stories and takes a certain amount of skill to perform, so one could see it as an art. And there is the element of good vs. bad and morality in it, and it is put forth before an audience.
But there is one distinct element, and it's the most defining element of professional wrestling, that is not covered by these descriptions.
Wrestling is about the audience. It is about satisfying the audience, it is about connecting with the audience, it is about getting a bigger audience in your next show than the one you have on your last. It is about making money.
Sport is not about making money. It does make money, but the primary goal of the athletes is to win and score points. Art is about conveying a feeling, or a situation, or showing a degree of skill. You can't really compare a painting or a song with wrestling. You can compare some elements of a film or theatre with wrestling, but the goal of film and theatre is not really to make money - that's the goal of producers and studios - but the actors, director, writers, etc. their goals are not to make money, and they don't have the immediacy of the live audience. Those involved in the process may want to be telling a story, or to perform well, or to get an award or critical acclaim, but it's not about making money. I think this is where we start to pervert what wrestling is.
Wrestlers are not actors. They are not artists. There is not an OSCAR that they are looking for. Yet some rate them as if they are out to win one - or at least the wrestling equivalent of an OSCAR - which is unfair. I find it silly to criticize a wrestler for no selling something when that very no selling gets a strong reaction from the crowd - as it is the wrestlers job to get that reaction from the audience. "Selling" is a means of getting a reaction from the audience, just as storytelling is, just as cupping your hand to your ear is, just as doing a really cool move is, or working a sleeper hold, or payback spots, or even no selling. There are many ways to get that reaction, but it's the reaction that matters, not how they get it. Their performances are only as good as the reaction it gets from the live audience. That is what makes wrestling unique.
Which leads me to the most apt comparison I can make to professional wrestling. And that is...
Comics are similiar to Wrestlers in this regard: Jokes are moves; There is build and pacing and even selling, and most importantly, there is the audience. A successful comedian, a good comedian, is one who does what?
Get the most laughs. Get's the loudest reaction.
A Comedian doesn't have a script to work from. Neither to wrestlers. Sure, there are preplanned spots for both, but if the audience isn't feeling it, then good Comedians will adapt. When to tell the right joke, to know when the right time to follow-up on a joke, to know how long to let the audience laugh for, to know when to leave the stage. That's what comedy is all about, that is what wrestling is all about. The ultimate goal is to make the audience laugh. It doesn't matter if their stories make sense, it doesn't matter if the Comedian contradicts what he said, it doesn't matter whether it is high brow or low brow, it doesn't matter if the Comedian uses a thousand F-bombs or none... as long as the Comedian gets that audience laughing... it doesn't matter. It only matters when the audience isn't laughing. It's silly to call a Comedian who has an audience eating out of the palm of his hand, to bad Comedian. You may not like it, you may not laugh, but that's where true objectivity comes in - even when it doesn't work for you, you can still admit to it working for others and give the Comedian credit for that.
Yet we don't evaluate Comics on things like logic. Which is a big problem with how fans look at wrestling.
It doesn't matter if the match doesn't make sense, it doesn't matter if someone forgets to sell the leg that was being worked on, it doesn't matter if they used high spots or garbage... as long as the Wrestlers get the audience into it... it doesn't matter. It only matters when the audience isn't into it. THEN you can look at things like no selling, like logic, like high spots and garbage. Bringing up those things to explain why a match doesn't work, when the match did work, doesn't make sense. Why it didn't work _for you_, sure, but then don't claim objectivity when you make those statements in the face of it working for the vast majority of those watching live.
We evaluate Comics on how they made us laugh and how they made the audience laugh. Not by how the story about the baby selling weed on the street doesn't make sense. I think the same should apply to Wrestler. Because the goals of the two are more similar than they are to any other performer out there.
I finally got around to watching Takada vs. Albright, from UWF-i (first match). I have a few things to say.
1. If I were ever to start up a promotion in 1993 in North America, the first two guys I would sign would be Nobuhiko Takada and Gary Albright. Above everyone else at that time, these two guys were fucking awesome in their roles. And I say that with full knowledge of how good Kobashi, Lyger, Misawa, Benoit, etc. were at that time. Gary Albright should have been a huge star, in my view. I love his promos, because the dude doesn't really cut "promos". Whatever he says, it sounds like he's saying it honestly and that he means it 100%. He's a big guy, but he's humble. He knows his strenghts and his weaknesses and he knows his opponents strengths and weaknesses and he talks about thim with this sincerity that you don't get anywhere else in wrestling.
I love his wrestling style, and he gets dogged on way too much. He wasn't one of the best workers, but he was incredible at playing the monster role. He was a damn good wrestler. He has the best suplexes ever. He sold very well. And he knew when to let his opponent get the advantage and for him to look weak, and he knew when to turn it up. Takada is near perfect in the way he mat wrestles and strikes and sells both giving a beating and taking one. Very few have been able to pull of "the man" like Nobuhiko Takada.
2. I love watching the UWF-i Bushido shows because you get the British announcing. The commentary team is this straight laced American, and this sorta gruffed up Brit, and they work well with each other. I love listening to footbul commentary more than actually watching the games, and if they could bring one of those announcers over to wrestling and convey the same sort of drama and emotion that they do for footbul, then wrestling would be much better for it. I watched some ROH yesterday (Generation Next show), and the announcing was the complete opposite of that. The announcing here really builds up this epic feel where both guys are undefeated and one must lose. Even if you haven't seen a whole lot of UWF-i or know alot about these two guys, you still buy it. They start off with interviewing Albright, they show the two fighters entering the ring, and they have the national anthems play
3. UWF-i fucking rocked. A completely different spin on professional wrestling with the point system that was used REALLY well here. They start off with 15 points, you lose a point if you get caught in a submission or need a rope break or get taken down, and you lose 3 points on the knockdown and they give you a 10 count to get up. The effect of being down on points (or being up) can make for some nice drama. Near the end of the match, with Albright so close to losing on points, him managing to pull it out with 2 huge german suplexes which KILLED Takada, was tremendous storytelling. No matter what happens in a fight, the monster is still the monster. The psychology is as pure as you can get for professional wrestling because they treat it as a real fight.
The match itself is, to me, a **** affair. There's plenty of action - Takada throws some sick kicks which Gary sells brilliantly - Gary throws some beautiful looking suplexes including a rolling belly to belly and the aforementioned german suplexes - the ground work is not at the leve of Takada/Tamura, but it's still pretty good. The fight itself is decided really on their feet where Takada tries to win with striking and Gary with Grappling. The finish astonished me, which is a testiment to how well worked the match was.
It's not the WWE.
It's not All Japan Pro Wrestling.
It has to do with worked fighting.
It's not UWF-i.
It has to do with women.
It's not AJW.
...It's called "The Real Catfight".
For those uninitiated, The Real Catfight/Japanese Catfighting takes two Japanese women, puts them in a ring (or in many cases, a tarped covered mat) and pits them against each other in a battle of wills. The objective is not only to pin or submit your opponent within a 3, 3 minute round system, but if you can rip off their clothes and foldle their boobies, all the better. Gimmick matches involve spaghetti, various sticky substances, and other props all meant to lather your opponent with and maybe stick down their panties. But it's not the overt nudity and playful lipstick lesbianism that really sells this show (why, that would just be porno, and downright perverted), but it's the WRESTLING that makes this promotion the greatest.
I will go ON RECORD, saying that this promotion has better mat wrestling than any other pro wrestling promotion in the world. Armbars, kimuras, leglocks, rear naked chokes. High kicks and german suplexes.
And then there's the "host" who has this really big orange wig on and that says "Are you ready? Are you ready? LEEEEEETSSSUH GETTTIT OOOOONAUYAHAHAOIFHKHGY!" and then jumps up in the air like a mad man. It's so very bizarre.
It's what wrestling is supposed to be.
You see, there are no planned-in-the-back, choreographed moves. These ladies go out there and wrestle on the fly. They trade holds and fight over them. It's like if Karl Gotch were asian, and a woman, and wrestled drunk. There are well-defined characters who fight as their characters would. There's back-and-forth action, and then there's squashes, and there are winners and losers. It's not violent, it's not done with malice. There is a sense of purity that you just don't find in todays manufactured world of professional wrestling. And sure, the actual technique may be lacking in some areas. And sure, they tend to laugh and smile and break character a lot. But part of that sense of purity is the sense of fun, and it's all in good fun. It's been a while since wrestling has been fun, hasn't it? We grew up as children watching wrestling cause it was fun. Well, whats more fun than seeing two hot women, one in a school girls outfit, one dressed as a superhero, slip around on orange tarp, covered in jelly, trying to apply leglocks while at the same time trying to strip the other down?
The Real Catfight airs at 2am on the fight network.
If you consider yourself a true wrestling fan, stay up and check it out.
I've tried to watch ROH, I really wanted to like it. And yes, there are a few matches from the promotion that I have really, really enjoyed. But for the most part, I can't watch the stuff. There are a combination of reasons why, particularly everything about it, but there is one thing that takes my dislike for ROH and turns it into hate.
Yes. I hate ROH fans more than I hate ROH's announcing. More than ROH's attempts at being everything but professional wrestling. I can't stand the fans.
Damn ECW for putting over their fans so much. Damn Pay Heyman for creating this generation of fucktards who feel the need to "get over" with the wrestlers more than the wrestlers feel the need to get over with them.
There are very few ROH reports that I have read that doesn't PRAISE THE FANS. What the fuck?! I read a report of Kobashi/Joe that started off right away, not with talking about the match or the wrestlers, but with talking about the CROWD HEAT. And then talking about the CHANTS. "Arigato"? ROH fans, YOU ARE FUCKING MORONS, so quit patting yourselves on the back for chanting useless shit and shut the fuck up. Dueling chants are great when they are genuine and don't sound contrived, like Couture/Tito at UFC 44 where part of the crowd would chant for Tito to get Tito into it, but as they die down another part of the crowd would chant for Randy cause Randy is kicking Titos ass. But in ROH, it's not there to actually support the wrestlers, it's there cause the crowd thinks its cute. When it comes down to it, there was a word I used above that perfectly describes ROH - their fans, their announcers, their wrestlers - GENUINE. And ROH is not it. At all.
Fedor vs. Cro Cop
PRIDE: Final Conflict 2005
Sunday, August 28th, 9:00pm EST
This Sunday, on Pay Per View, two of the top heavyweight fighters on the planet will go head-to-head in one of the biggest fights in Mixed Martial Arts history.
It’s funny, I find myself thinking a lot about MMA history and what has led to these two men going into battle. It’s not just their history, but THE history of the sport that has lead to this Sunday. The evolution of the heavyweight title and the men who have competed for it is a tale woven in triumphant victories and tragic defeats, and begins with a fighter by the name of Mark “The Hammer” Coleman.
Coleman’s debut at UFC X represented a change in the guard for MMA.
To me, Mark Coleman was the first undisputed Heavyweight champion. The title “undisputed” is important, because there isn’t and hasn’t been an international governing body and between the two top fighting organizations, PRIDE and the UFC, there have been several champions who laid claim to the top spot in the respective companies, but not to the undisputed crown. In fact, to this point, only 2 or 3 men can lay claim to that honour. With his “ground and pound” technique, where he used his superior wrestling skills, brute power, and combinations of punches, forearms, elbows and headbuts, Coleman took the UFC by storm. By defeating the two top heavyweight fighters in the mid-90’s (Don Frye, and Dan Severn, the only two “Ultimate Ultimate” champions in history) with ease, The Hammers claim to the undisputed title was, well, undisputable. For a while, at least.
Then came a kickboxer by the name of Maurice Smith.
Smith, a K-1 Kickboxer, was given little chance to beat the dominant Coleman
Smith had been training with Tsuyoshi Kohsaka and Frank Shamrock and had developed with their help ( using TK’s guard technique and Shamrocks timing and conditioning) a way to "solve" Coleman on the ground so Smith would have the opportunity to get the fight standing and be able to win the fight, as Joe Rogan would say, “In his world”. This match is a pivotal moment in MMA history, as it reflected an emerging trend in “cross training” with three very different, and well-known fighters, and showed that indeed, a Striker can defeat a Grappler. The fight was decided in the first few minutes, as Coleman got Smith down and started to hammer away. However, Smith was cagey and able to block and avoid the majority of Colemans strikes and weathered the storm. He was able to “slip out the backdoor” and got up and from there went on to win the fight by decision.
Coleman offered up little competition after his initial ground attack failed against Smith
Coleman, a man who did not know defeat at that point, went on a downward spiral - losing two more fights to up-and-coming fighters in Pete Williams and Pedro Rizzo. He later went on to PRIDE and became the first ever Grand Prix champion in 2000. Smith, on the other hand, went on to lose his title to Randy Couture. Couture’s reign as champion was short-lived as he vacated the title and pursued other ventures. A heavyweight tournament led to Bas Rutten vs. Kevin Randleman and a controversial decision put the belt around Ruttens waist. Fate, as it tends to do with the UFC heavyweight title, put it in limbo as Rutten retired after his win. The constant “bounding around” made it hard to find a clear champion; the title “undisputed” was now in dispute.
A protege of Coleman, Kevin “The Monster” Randleman looked to bring some stability to the languishing division. He defeated the three-men who had beaten his mentor, and his raw, natural, talent along with limitless potential made the future look bright for the Ohio-native. A new hope, perhaps?
Did someone say “Natural”?
Randy Couture, after having a failed Olympic bid and little international fighting success, returned to the UFC to regain the title he never lost. He wasn’t supposed to win, but the sayings “Never bet against Randy Couture” and “Never bet on Kevin Randleman” were defined this night. The year 2000 also had the aforementioned Grand Prix tournament in PRIDE, the largest of its kind to that point, and Coleman’s “comeback”. Still, there was no one fighter who could lay claim to being the “Undisputed Heavyweight Champion”.
The Natural was able to keep the title longer than most (1+ year) but only defended it successfully against one man. His second opponent, Josh Barnett, was able to take the title from him and then went on to vacate it due to a negative drug test. Ricco Rodriquez also failed to deliver as champion, losing the strap in his first defence to an unranked Tim Sylvia.
However, during this time frame (2001 and 2002), a light emerged from the darkness and brought balance to the division. His name was (and still is, amazingly) Antonio Rodrigo “Minotauro” Nogueira.
Nogueira, the second Undisputed Heavyweight Champion in MMA history
Debuting at PRIDE 15, Nogueira defeated perennial gatekeeper Gary Goodridge and then went on to face Grand Prix champion Mark Coleman at PRIDE 16. Both wins came easily for the Brazilian fighter as his trusty triangle choke was able to garner tap-outs from both men in short order and set him up for the inaugural PRIDE Heavyweight title match at PRIDE 17 against Heath Herring. Herring earned his spot by defeating former top fighter Mark Kerr, as well as Enson Inoue and Tom Erikson and proved himself to be a worthy contender. The match itself was an all-time classic, with Nogueira ultimately dominating the fight, but Herring still putting in an excellent showing of submission defence and heart.
It was, however, his fight against Bob Sapp which solidified his standing as an undisputed champion.
The fight itself featured incredible strength from Sapp and indestructible resolve from Nogueira and remains a favourite by many. Nog endured a severe beating and was able to weather the storm and apply an armbar for the win. If he couldn’t be defeated by Sapp, he couldn’t be defeated. Period. Semmy Shilt and Dan Henderson (the only man to defeat Nog prior to their PRIDE 24 fight) were no match for the champion in their respective bouts, and things didn’t look good for Minotauros next opponent, a Russian by the name of Fedor Emelianenko.
Fedor became the top contender after laying a brutal beating on the man who took Nogueira the full 20 minutes in Heath Herring. However, some thought Fedor was ducking Nogueira after pulling out of their scheduled fight at PRIDE 24 claiming an injury. Plus, if Sapp and Coleman couldn’t defeat Nogueira, what could Fedor do? The fight was a drubbing. Fedor slipped all of Nogueiras submission attempts like he was a white belt and crushed him with thunderous bombs from the guard. Nogueira - the man who was heads-and-shoulders above every other heavyweight in the world - was humbled. The look on his face after the fight told the story of a man who simply could not win, no matter what he tried. However, despite this, I don’t think Fedor could lay claim to being Undisputed.
If “he beat him and that guy beat the other guy” were enough to lay claim to being the worlds top fighter, then somewhere along the way Enson Inoue and Kazuyuki Fujita were the worlds top fighters. Ric Flair’s axiom of “To be the man, you gotta beat the man” does not reign true. However, Matt Hughes’ “To be called champion, you have to defend your title” does. To say Fedor’s quality of opposition was lacking would be a bit of an understatement. Though Fujita and Goodridge are respectable fighters, they were not championship-level contenders, and it seemed more like PRIDE wanting to pad their new champions record than put out any serious challengers. Meanwhile, as Fedor was facing Fujita and Big Daddy, a K-1 fighter called “Cro Cop” was making an impression (think of the start of Rocky III with Cro Cop in the role of Clubber Lang). With two brutal finishes of once-top heavyweights in Igor Vovchanchyn and Heath Herring, Mirko Filipovic was earning praise from fans across the MMA world who were calling for title fights with Fedor. The fight was set for fall of 2003, but was quickly called off after Fedor claimed a hand injury and could not fight.
PRIDE, however, was determined to have their title match and put Cro Cop and Nogueira in an “interim” title bout. The championship would be in dispute. The goal was to set up Cro Cop vs. Fedor, however fate, or to be more accurate, Nogueira, decided it wasn’t time yet and their Final Conflict 2003 fight would go down as my personal Match of the Year. Nogueria showed the warrior-spirit that won him the Sapp fight, and after taking bone breaking punches and gut-busting kicks, he was able to come through with an arm-bar victory. With Fedor/Nog being the next logical fight on the agenda, PRIDE would have to think of another way to get Cro Cop and Fedor in the ring.
The Heavyweight Grand Prix consisted of 16 fighters. Half (Nogueira, Fedor, Cro Cop, Herring, Kharitonov, Coleman, Randleman, Shilt) could say they deserved to be there, the other half (Giant Silva, Sentoryu, Gan McGee, Ogawa...) could not. No matter, it was clear the cream would eventually rise to the top. In the first round, Fedor was set to face Mark Coleman and Cro Cop was put up against Kevin Randleman. The goal was to eventually put the two fighters against each other, but fate stepped in once again and delayed their confrontation in the form of knockout blow from The Monster. Fedor, on the other hand, won his fight masterfully with an armbar from the guarded position.
PRIDE wanted to see if lightening could strike twice and set Randleman vs. Fedor in the quarter-finals of the tournament. For a moment it appeared to be true as Randleman crushed Fedors head with an awe-inspiring suplex/driver combination that would have paralysed any normal man. Not only did Fedor recover quickly from the move, but ended up finishing the fight within seconds of reversing positions and applying a kimura. It was his matches against Coleman and Randleman where Fedor truly showed signs of being the undisputed heavyweight champion.
The finals of the Grand Prix between Fedor and Nogueira took place in August of 2004. Though Filipovic was no longer in title contention, PRIDE tried to add more motivation for Fedor to fight Cro Cop by putting his brother, Alexander Emelianenko in the ring with the Croatian fighter during the same event (the fight ended with Mirko kicking Alexes head off). The finals, unfortunately, were delayed until New Years Eve due to an cut caused by an accidental headbutt. The match would not only determine the Tournament champion, but the Undisputed PRIDE Heavyweight champion as well.
This time, Fedor not only dominated Nogueira, he did so in a completely different fashion from their first meeting. Rather than staying in Nogueiras guard, Fedor opted to keep the fight standing and score with huge punches and numerous takedowns. At the same event, Cro Cop managed to avenge his loss to Randleman by winning with a guillotine choke. A match previous, Mirko defeated Josh Barnett, who had remained unbeaten since his victory over Randy Couture. This put Cro Cop in title contention with Fedor.
But before Fedor could face Cro Cop, he had to quell a demon that had plagued him for years. The only loss on his record was a cut-stoppage from an illegal elbow strike from Tsuyoshi Kohsaka years previous in the RINGS fighting promotion. In my opinion, that fight should be stricken from his record due to the nature of the incident, despite this, Fedor still managed to get his win back by obliterating Kohsaka causing doctors to stop the fight in the first round. An event earlier, Cro Cop beat Mark “The Hammer” Coleman by TKO after Coleman was unable to take the kickboxer down and could not defend from Mirko’s punching onslaught.
So with everything out of the way, the fight was booked for August. Fedor vs. Cro Cop, finally.
This fight is similar to Coleman/Smith in many ways. Fedor is a world-class grappler having won world titles in both sambo and judo, and uses ground and pound as his primary weapon. Cro Cop is a K-1 kickboxer who has worked on wrestling and ground skills to support his striking. This fight will also be decided in the first few minutes, however, this time Cro Cop is in Colemans position and Fedor is in Smiths'. If Fedor lasts more than five minutes in the ring with Cro Cop, it will mean that he has found a way to avoid getting hit with Mirko's deadly kicks and punches. He will have weathered the storm which will set up opportunities for takedowns and submissions. If he is unable to "solve" Cro Cop, then it will mean a quick night for the champion.
Aspects of the fight game like takedowns, sprawls, strategy, submissions, blocking, rushing, etc. have been discussed for 2 years. There is little more that can be said about the dynamics of each fighter and their styles in this fight, so the intricaces of this fight and what both men need to do to win will be left for the message boards. All I will say is this....
Through-out their careers, Emelianenko and Filipovic have faced the same challenges (Nogueira, Randleman, Coleman, Herring, Fujita) with much different results. As much as fate has kept them apart, it has also been able to connect them, not only to each other but to the history that has guided them along their paths.
Cro Cop has seen his ups and downs, and after all he has been through, after all the opponents and controversy, his 2 year quest to become PRIDE Heavyweight Champion will end this Sunday. He has defeated Fedor's friends and family, and now it is time to see if he can handle the man himself.
Fedor is one win away from becoming the 3rd Undisputed Heavyweight Champion in history. Though I do not believe he fears Cro Cop, there are those who do and that puts his position as Top Fighter in doubt. He needs to end those doubts.
This fight is about history. The history of each fighter, the history of the prize they fight for, and the history they are about to make.
Who do I think will win?
Do I need to say any more?
I will be updating this throughout the week, it's actually pretty damn fun to do once you get the first set of matches done.
October: UFC 55: Fury
Andrei Arlovski vs. Paul Buentello
Forrest Griffin vs. Ian Freeman
Evan Tanner vs. David Loiseau
Jason Miller vs. Nick Diaz
Mike Swick vs. Chris Leben
Josh Koscheck vs. Chris Lytle
December: UFC 56: Heat
Matt Hughes vs. Karo Parisyan
Rich Franklin vs. Matt Lindland
Diego Sanchez vs. Carlos Newton
David Terrell vs. Joe Doerkson
Nate Quarry vs. Nathan Marquardt
James Irvin vs. Sam Hoger
February: UFC 57: Couture/Liddell III
Randy Couture vs. Chuck Liddell
Andrei Arlovski vs. Frank Mir
Tim Sylvia vs. Paul Buentello
David Loiseau vs. David Terrell
Stephan Bonnar vs. Quinton "Rampage" Jackson
Josh Koscheck vs. loser of Miller/Diaz
*Debut of Ultimate Fighter HW winner*
April: UFC 58: The Perfect Rush
Georges St. Pierre vs. Matt Hughes
Forrest Griffin vs. James Irvin
Evan Tanner vs. Nate Quarry
(if Nathan Mardquart beats Quarry) vs. Rich Franklin
Mardquart vs. Lindland
Lindland vs. Franklin II
Diego Sanchez vs. Nick Diaz/Jason Miller
*Debut of TUF WW winner*
June: UFC 59: Untitled
Winner of Bonnar/Jackson vs. Winner of Couture/Liddell
(If Couture loses) Couture vs. Arlovski
(if Bonnar loses) Bonnar vs. Griffin II
August: UFC 60: New Blood/Summer Rush
Georges St. Pierre vs. Diego Sanchez
Josh Koscheck vs. Matt Lindland
I can't stand the Death Valley Driver Video Review Message Board.
I used to love going there because it had a certain level of intelligence regarding professional wrestling. But ever since the board change, and the subsequent popularity of the Sleazy Stories and the Match board, it has been filled with complete fucking morons. And there are SO MANY OF THEM. This board has plenty of idiots, but the quantity of idiots over there, and the ratio of idiots/reasonable posters is very high. At least 15:1 over there, while over here it's like 10:1.
And they don't even know they're stupid. They present their opinions like they know what they're talking about and they're the type of person who hates the word "smark" and if you ever say they're wrong they'll get upset and pissy and say "you can't tell me I'm wrong". They're like 1000 Downhomes posting about wrestling.
The thread that set me off, was this one:
The love Eddie/Rey gets from this board is insane. It's a horrible feud, and they love it. Fucking retards. Let's ignore the fact that Eddie and Rey have been feuding off and on for a decade and Rey has continuously gotten the better of Eddie and the roles have never been reversed once and only NOW does Eddie bring up their secrets. Let's ignore that huge gap in logic. Let's also ignore the fact that not so long down the road Rey and Eddie will be best friends once again. It doesn't change the fact that the current feud itself is pure shit and is not believable for a second, nor is it entertaining. It doesn't change that their matches are all the fucking same and will never, ever, ever, ever live up to their HH97 match.
And shit like Snitsky and Viscera? They eat it up.
It's a mark board, no different from WrestleZone, No DQ, SuperSexxxyDIVAS.com, 411, InsidePulse, or any fucking place that I've long since decided not to go to because the people there are total fucktards. Places where
. would be welcomed with open arms. And the worst thing is, I can't tell them they're idiots like I can here, because I'd get banned. Critical Thought is DEAD in these boards. And the WWE "isn't so bad" and we "shouldn't be too hard on them". What the FUCK? God, someone tell these fucks that Santa isn't real! This is one of the few places where I can find some rational posters, and even then, it's on the decline here as well.
I love going there for MMA discussion and that's about it. It's probably one of the best MMA boards out there, IMO, because 9/10 guys there know what they're talking about. And DEANs Comixxx and the Workrate reports and the DVDVRs are all great, but there is way too much dumb there for me to handle. It also sucks that so much of the content is shared between this board and theirs. I hate it when a poster will post something here, and then post the exact same thing over there.
Who should Michaels make a star?, Which guy should he put over?
That says it all, doesn't it?
There are a lot of individual posts which make me scratch my head, or smack my head against the desk, or that generally make my head hurt, but rarely is there an entire thread full of dumbassery.
To start, the premise is wonked. Shawn Michaels isn't in the business of putting over anyone but himself - this has been a constant in his career. I can't think of a single person since HBK's return that has benefited from a feud with him other than Hunter - and that was only because it allowed HHH a few months to jerk off on screen. Edge? No. Benoit? No. Orton? No. Jericho? No. Kane? No. Batista? No. Angle? No. And even if it were true that the dude was willing to put guys over, he doesn't have the credibility any more to effectively do so. Michaels has been established as a "legend", which is great for getting cheers, but it also means "old". A big, strong, muscular, young guy against an small, skinny, old guy. It doesn't work. And Shawn has stooged so much in his career, that him getting thrown around like a rag doll doesn't carry much weight. Sadly, this is a concept missed by fellow TSMers.
- Dumbfuck #1. Giving Shawn the title is a step-back.
- Dumbfuck #2 agreeing with Dumbfuck #1. Cena is far-and-away the most over and most marketable guy in the WWE. I don't like his schtick and have only found one of his matches to be worth anything, but I won't ignore his overness.
- Dumbfuck #3. Sheldon has no personality, RVD is a spot monkey... Christian is insanely boring in the ring. Christian vs. HBK? The first one to do a good move wins! Awful.
- Not the dumbest thing that has come from Dumbfuck #4, but the "waste his rub" is so silly. A rub is elevation by association. Cena is the most over guy on the show and is the WWE champ. He is currently in the position to provide the rub, not receive one.
If Shawn should job clean against anyone, it's Cena or (dun dun dun) Chris Masters. Masters already looks credible, and it would be somewhat believable to have Michaels pass out from the Masterlock, at this point anyways.
Definetly not Shelton "so much potential" Benjamin with his lack of ability to speak clearly and lack of using his brain in the ring to have a good match instead of just using his athletic ability to do a bunch of good spots. RVD is a lost cause at this point.
- Dumb on a lot of levels by Dumbfuck #5. I can sorta see the Chris Masters thing, as it would get over his size and strength. But then where would it go? Nowhere. Shawn would be ok the next week and the impact of the move would be lost. Shawn is a fitting guy to go down to the masterlock (after big show, hopefully), but he wouldn't "make" Masters with it.
*cabbageboy offers the first intelligent thought*
He should pass the torch too...Jericho or RVD.
- If this didn't come from Dumbfuck #6, I would have thought it to be sarcasm.
Jericho will never hold that torch again, that much is painfully apparent...he SHOULD HAVE passed the torch at WM19...
- Dumbfuck #4, in regards to his dumbfuck peers, is the least worse of the bunch. He still is a bit off. Jericho needed the torch passed years before WM 19 -the match with Michaels simply was his last attempt at being considered anything legitimate in the WWE.
When Conway first debuted, most of us liked his potential and thought he could develop into a great wrestler. He had paid his dues in OVW and apparently put on a good show down there. He instantly made La Resistance a good tag team when he started wrestling as half the team, and they were good with either partner alongside Conway.
We have also heard how he stood toe to toe with Benoit in workouts, so he obviously busts his ass training. He also stated in an interview that he wants to pattern his career after Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels, as they did tag team wrestling, held the secondary titles, then won the world title. He also wants to make a name for himself as a good worker.
So, I was thinking that Conway's look and attire is kind of in the same fashion as HBK's during his IC-level run. If Conway works his way into getting the IC Title in a few months and has a good run with it, he could draw some comparisons to HBK by the announcers. Then after dropping the title, Michaels could solidify him as an upper-midcarder
- I won't lump the author of this in with the dumbfucks, I will however call it "Dumb post by an otherwise rational poster". That La Res was ever a good tag team boggles my mind, let alone his presense there making them good. "Better"? Yes. "Good" no. I don't really care if he has the ability to be a good worker or how much he wants to be a good worker, he simply doesn't show good wrestling in the ring. And even if I were to compromise that by saying what he does is "passable" ("basic"), I don't want passable. I want great. I've seen flashes of brilliance in Orton, Lesnar, and Benjamin long before they were popular in the WWE - I don't see it yet in Conway and until I do I won't consider him worthy of such praise or value.
Until they build the show, title, and just everything overall up, it isn't going to matter who he jobs to, or how many people he does so. He could help set things back on track over the next year, and THEN help build up some other guys.
- Dumbfuck #7 agreeing with Dumbfuck #2 in typical Dumbfuck Downhome fashion.
I also agree, a win over Michaels right now would mean nothing compared to what it would mean after a win over Hogan and a few months with the world title. Not the mention, he's the most entertaining guy on Raw and should be at the top again, regardless.
- Dumbfuck #8, continuing the notion that HBK can be given more credibility after a few months of wins, as if HBK isn't old and small and skinny - and has been wrestling for 20 years.
*KR offers some much-needed perspective on the issue*
... The rest of the thread is minor dumb posts, an Uber-Dumbass makes his dumbass opinions known that other dumbasses will no doubt agree with, but I'll leave that one up to you, kind reader, to figure out.
I am really, really, REALLY, looking forward to Ultimate Fight Night. There is something about a live UFC show that gets the blood pumping, and for once I don't actually have to PAY to see it. WWE fans don't really understand that, because RAW has been on live since 1993 and shows like Superstars, SNME, Challenge, WCW Saturday Night, etc. have been on even earlier, a show like UFN is to be treasured. I own almost every UFC Event DVD (and with LOTC, we have every one since UFC 43) and I can say with all honesty there isn't a bad one in the bunch. The UFC has been extremely consistent over the past few years, and I hope they continue the string of great shows with Ultimate Fight Night.
For 3 HOURS, a UFC card will be presented on SPIKE TV starting at 9pm EST. Joe Rogan and Mike Goldberg - the best announce team going today - will call the action. This team has grown so much in the 3 or 4 years they've been working together. I used to think Goldberg was nothing but a shill - which is still true for the most part - but I've come to appreciate his ability to direct the flow of chatter and weave together match commentary and shilling DVD's, CD's, PPV's. His genuine enthusiasm for the sport and his belief in it is shown in his commentary, plus he has a great voice for it. I've said this about Rogan before, but there are times when I am thinking something, and then right after Rogan brings it up. He knows his stuff, and is basically a smark on commentary - but not the same way ROH commentators are. The two complement each other very well, and you can see they have respect for each other and for what they are doing. They are, essentially, the opposite of JR and King. And it's refreshing.
The main card is a typical UFC PPV style card - 5 fights. However, this time I doubt they will show any extra fights from the undercard due to commercial restraints. Unless Mike Swick manages to stop another fight in under 30 seconds... I imagine there will be lengthy fight previews and fighter interviews, which in my view, is something the UFC does very well. They manage to familiarize someone more with a fighter and a fight in a minute than the WWE can in an entire month leading up to a PPV. I remember Mike Kyle fighting Justin Eilers at UFC 49 - I never heard of either guy and the way they explained it, made me actually want to see the fight. It was amazing.
Josh Koscheck vs. Pete Spratt
IMO, this is a bad opener. Yes, Koscheck had two good fights against Diego Sanchez and Chris Sanford. But he also had a complete stinker against Chris Leben, where he was content with just laying on the guy for the win. The reason he did that is the same reason he could possibly do that against Spratt - he doesn't want to get knocked out. They should have put this on the undercard and if it were good, choose to show it later on in the show. Spratt has shown weakness against good wrestlers with submission skills (Newton and St Pierre come to mind) as he tapped out in short time to both men. Koscheck, a man with Brock Lesnar-like qualifications in terms of amateur wrestling, can take Spratt down - what he does when he's down there will determine the quality of the fight.
Nate Quarry vs. Pete Sell
How can you not like Nate "Rock" Quarry? His interview with Insidefighting was hilarious ("Nate Quarry does not speak of himself in the third person"), and he effectively destroyed his previous two opponents. The guy is a stud - just look at those arms; they look digitally enhanced. The problem is, he's going up against Pete "Drago" Sell. Drago is an undefeated fighter, which is dangerous because you don't know if he's just that good, or if his opponents were just that bad. His most notable win was over Baroni, and if you look at what Phil has done after that fight (KO wins over Minowa and top ranked MW Ryo Chonan), then it's an impressive win. If you look at what Barnoi did before that (two straight losses against Evan Tanner and Matt Linland, respectively) then Dragos accomplishment lessens.
This fight is a test for both men - can Quarry really shine in the middleweight division, or is Drago the real deal? This makes for an exciting fight. IMO, this fight should have gone on first. Sell trains under Matt Serra, while Quarry trains under Team Quest and has been found in the corners of Randy Couture, Linland and Dan Henderson. Sell showed a willingness to bang with one of the best boxers in MMA in Baroni, a Quarry showed excellent combinations against Lodune Sincaid and Shonie Carter. Grappling-wise and Striking-wise these guys can get it done, so what this fight may come down to are some of the more intricate things in fighting - training, conditioning, controlling the pace, countering, etc. This is where MMA is at right now in some points and where it is certainly going in the future - its more than just style vs. style now. It's about strategy and preparation, like in any sport.
And it's about time. At 33 years of age, the time is now for Nate to start challenging for UFC gold. Fighting is, despite the freakish nature of the Natural, a young mans game. Sell is a young man, Nate is not. Will this be a factor in this fight? It might be. I'm hoping for a Quarry win, but I am not Selling Drago short, he might be the real deal.
Stephan Bonnar vs. Sam Hoger
In his fight against Forrest Griffin, for Stephan Bonnar, it was about business. The winner would get a 6-figure UFC contract, whether or not they liked each other was irrelevant. Through true grit, balls, and determination, both men ended up with the prize. This time, it's personal.
The bible says it bluntly - Thou Shalt Not Steal. So this fight is not just about winning or losing, it's about heaven and hell and gods word. Hoger, from the cold wasteland of Alaska, defied that commandment. With his cocky grin, Sam set the TUF house ablaze with his sticky fingers. Confident in his abilities, some say to a point of near hubris, Sam is a walking, talking, sinner. Bonnar fights to uphold gods will.
... or he just wants his UFC BEANIE.
Chris Leben vs. Patrick Cote
Chris Leben is a slugger. He wants you, his opponent, to come out and throw down with him. He has heavy hands and he's willing to swing em and knock you the fuck out. Problem is, for him -not us, cause this is going to be fun-, Patrick Cote likes to do the exact same thing, and he's probably better at it.
The best part is, both these guys are tough motherfuckers. Cote took some sick elbows from Tito Ortiz in his debut UFC fight and didn't even flinch. Leben will let you punch him in the face if it means he can punch yours at the same time, cause he's confident his punch will knock you out and your punch won't. So here we have two guys who can hit hard and can get hit hard - see why this fight is fun? Plus, they're both fighting to be in the UFC - Cote has two previous losses (his last fight was an exciting one against Joe Doerkson) and Leben has two losses in TUF. A loss for either just about means they're outta here. I imagine the UFC wants Leben around because he's one of the standouts from the Ultimate Fighter show, and set up this match with Cote in hopes that Leben gets to properly show his skills.
The thing is, Cote is a more technical boxer. He's a better boxer. While Leben is throwing huge haymakers, Cote will be on the inside throwing jabs, crosses and hooks. He's a dangerous guy for Leben to be facing, which is why I think Leben will try to take him down and pound away like he did against Jason Thacker. Hopefully we'll get to see fireworks, either way.
Nathan Marquardt vs. Ivan Salaverry.
I always get Nathan Marquardt and Ricardo Almeida confused, and it's not because they faced each other. I guess it's because Ricardo looks more like a "Nathan" than Nathan does (Almeida looks like a guy named Nathan I know). Why do I say this? Because that's about all I know about the 7 time King of Pancrase.
Ivan Salaverry, however, is a fighter I enjoy watch fight. The guy is very well rounded, he has a slick triangle, and his post-match celebration is the goofiest thing I've seen in the octagon. I really, really, really, really, really want to see him fight current MW champ Rich Franklin, because that would be a killer fight. And, apparently, so does Zuffa because if Salaverry wins there would be just cause for putting him into title contention. Marquardt is a high quality fighter, so by no means is this a Ken Shamrock fight (Shamrock having been lead to Rich Franklins slaughter on the last live UFC show on SPIKE).
Overall, the feelings I have right now are excitement mixed in with worry - what if this card sucks? What if it doesn't live up to expectations? What if the ratings are so low that SPIKE gives up on the UFC and all the growth in the past few years are for naught? To be an MMA fan is to be invested in it. As someone who watched for a decade-plus and has seen the evolution and is seeing it now on national television, I can't help but feel joy when something good happens and feel devastated when something bad happens. This sport deserves to be on TV, it deserves to be covered by the sports media, it deserves to be known by a national audience, it deserves mainstream acceptance. But it's not for me to decide, so for now I'll just stay excited and nervous and hope for the best.
Since I have watched a few episodes of Deadwood and have absolutely adored it on every level, I shall now put it in the coveted top 10 - thus bumping Survivor off the list.
2. Lost - tremendous first season, the last episode had me freaking out which put it over the top, for me. Outstanding in every single category.
1. Angel - I forgot how much I loved this show, but this probably should be #1 cause I freaked out more for this show than any other. Fucking wicked consistant, Season 2-5 was a fucking masterpiece. This should be #1. I am changing it.
3. Gilmore Girls - I get this warm feeling after watching every episode. I think I will have to write an seperate post to explain how fucking good this show is.
4. Firefly - Gah. Fallen! I'll explain this in another post. I'll say right now that after seeing every episode at least 6 times, I can't bring myself to watch any of them. They seem a lil cold to me now.
5. Deadwood - When LOTC introduced me to the very notion of watching the show, I asked "does it have any supernatural elements?" he said no. As you may notice, only 3 of my top 10 are set in our current reality (though Gilmore Girls is very much not of our current reality, the pop culture references ground it there). I asked if there was any gimmick - a hook - that would make it interesting. He said Deadwood is a town built on the basis of a goldrush, and since its on Indian land there is no law. Not bad, not bad, there's enough there to attract different kind of folk but no vampires? no klingons? no black rock? How on earth would I ever enjoy such a show?
Interesting Characters, you cocksucker.
Great acting, you fucking cunt.
Al fucking Swearengen, you motherfucker.
Oh, and a way to tie together two characters who seemingly have nothing in common and still manage to make them believably bond and thus form a rich tapestry across the entire town where you could connect the dots and connect everyone in Deadwood together in 2 degrees or less. Deadwood has made me re-evaluate my entire list to see where it goes, because to be honest, it has made TV suck a lot more because it's so fucking good. The bar is set very high, as are my expectations.
6. CSI - Amazingly, I can find replay value in this show. Grissom is my hero, I love all the cast and the way they interact. I must see Season 5, though, as I've missed most of it. Their peak episodes are fantastic.
7. The Shield - I love silly and fantastical shows, as this list proves. This is the only show that isn't like that. It's serious, it's straight, and there are no supernatural forces. Unless you call Cleetus Van Damme a supernatural force. It's a badass show with some great acting and well written stories and plot developments.
8. Buffy - Too many "poorish" seasons for me to put any higher, and I've been well removed from the great years. Still, to make it in the top 10 is an acheivement, and it deserves to be here on season 5 alone. One of these days I'll pick up some Buffy DVDs and revisit and see why it belonged higher.
9. Star Trek DS9 - I had to pick a star trek, since I love Voyager and Next Gen as wel, but this stands out for having thee best star trek episode, as well as being a lot more consistent.
10. Carnivale - I need to see Season 2, but Season 1 was really fucking good. Some have said that they slow played it too much, but I enjoyed it. No one particular episode stands out, but rather, the entire story is what I remember best.
Lou Thesz/Karl Gotch vs. Antonio Inoki/Seiji Sakaguchi - 2/3 falls
This is my first full-match exposure to Karl Gotch who I have appreciated for a while now due to his contributions to MMA, but haven't seen enough to appreciate as a wrestler. The general perception of mat wrestling, especially during this period of time, is that it is boring. That it's just one headlock after another. Karl Gotch (and Lou Thesz) really shatter that stereotype through various twists, turns, and technique.
Gotch is very animated in his movements - almost ballet-like as he goes to apply a hold. He does really silly, needless, set-ups which are as entertaining as they are bizarre. Very convoluted stuff like doing a double knucklelock, kicking his opponents hand down, and then turning it into a hammerlock and turning that into a single-leg takedown from behind. The MMA fan in me says it's unpractical, but the wrestling fan in me says it's just the right amount of carny to spice up regular holds.
Thesz does more effective, logical, mat work and his rolling kimura takedown is great. From what I have heard about Thesz, one thing gets left out - he's one entertaining motherfucker. The first match I've ever seen of him was against Antonio Rocca and he did some great heelish gestures such as hiding in the ropes to avoid getting hit. In this match, he is very lively - whispering to Gotch when he makes a tag, as if they are planning something; yelling at the ref; taking some cheap shots; really selling the back after a Sakaguchi bearhug; pulling Gotches leg from inside the ring trying to get a rope break; hiding in the ropes after losing the teams first fall. I kinda think Thesz would still be over today with the wrestling fan because of the way he acted in the ring. No one else really does this stuff, and fans would love those lil touches.
The match itself is very good. I'd say it ranges from ***1/2-***3/4. I can't quite give it a **** rating because it is a little sloppy at times, and this match relies on the technical aspects of wrestling rather than storytelling, so the botched spots really hurt it. There aren't many, but let's just say this match would have been so much better without the ropes. It's very much a catch-as-catch-can match, very little rope running and very tight holds and, surprisingly, the pace is good. They do work a hold longer than wrestlers would today, but they did it differently back then. They presented it as real, so there was a sense of danger in the holds. The wrestler in the hold was in trouble and had to think of a way to get out. The wrestler applying the hold held on tightly, since he had his opponent in trouble, and tried to fight-off the escape attempts, which gave the holds legitimacy.
The variety of the holds is what keeps this match from being dull. Headlocks, Armlocks, leg vices, scissorholds, kimuras, Armbars, bearhugs, toe holds, bow-and-arrow, hammerlocks... the list goes on. Part of the fun is seeing which different hold will be used now, and that mainly results from the great Karl Gotch. Also, the frequent tags break the monotony. They work different combinations, Inoki starts with Thesz, then tags in Sakaguchi, Thesz works with Sak until he gets tired and tags in Gotch, Gotch wrestles with Sakaguchi until Sak tags in Inoki. Logical tag work, not very southern, but still good for pacing purposes.
Without a doubt, my favourite spot in the entire match and one of the coolest spots I've seen in a long time, comes from Inoki putting Gotch in a cravate (think of a headlock, except the applier is infront of the opponent with this arms in the position of a Stunner) and Inoki works the hold for several minutes. During this time, Gotch is doing everything he can to escape, but Inoki -very acrobatically, might I add- keeps holding on. There are tons of cool ways they work the hold, and I think the spot would get over huge today because it's just so different and wrestling fans like different. Gotch tries to bodyslam is way out, but Inoki holds on. So, later on, Gotch picks Inoki up for another bodyslam (and I'm thinking it's a bodyslam, and I'm thinking he's going to fail) but instead hits a backbreaker and is able to get out of the hold. FANFUCKINGAWESOME.
The first fall comes from Thesz giving Sakaguchi a backdrop driver. Sakaguchi responds later for the second fall in the match with an atomic drop. Something is not right there. I forgive the atomic drop fall because of Theszes great selling. First, he sold the back tremendously after the bearhug (getting caught trying to do a Thesz press), so since the atomic drop targets the same area (lowerback) and since Sak is presented as the big, strong, tall guy in the match, I can almost buy the impact. The second part makes me fully buy the fall, which is Theszes selling after the pin. He's on the mat for a few seconds - it wasn't a knock-out spot, it was more of a bodyblow that put him down - Gotch and company are attending to him. Thesz gets up, slowly moves to his corner to get out -but the ref doesn't let him- he must continue the fall. Gotch isn't too happy, but Thesz is like "No dude, it's cool, I'm ok, really, I'm fine" and then he backs the fuck away from Sakaguchi and tries to avoid all contact with him all-the-while taunting him on with his "come on" gestures. Really awesome stuff from Thesz here.
Half-way through the match, it gets a lil rougher. Thesz starts using punches on Inoki, which fires Inoki up to respond in-kind. Before a lock-up, Thesz slaps Inoki, the crowd is starting to heat up now. Thesz becomes a lil more of a cock after taking the pin, and while his brawling skills aren't nearly up to the level of his grappling ability, it's still nice to see. A running gag in the second part of the match is Thesz egging Inoki on and then hiding in the ropes - testing Inokis sportsmanship. Lou is an oldman, he's seen and done it all, he's proven himself, he can get away with bending the rules. Gotch provides nice juxtaposition as he had an opportunity to jump Inoki from behind after Thesz makes a tag, but he refrains. He has a chance to get in a cheap shot when the ref breaks them up, but he doesn't. The crowd sees the difference between Gotch and Thesz, and applauds Karls sportsmanship.
Karl Gotch would rather test Inokis inring ability, rather than his resolve as a wrestler. He clearly is having fun in the ring, and at times plays around with Inoki. He does this swank spot with a double knuckle lock, spininng Inoki around (and Spinning around Inoki) until he gets Antonio in a straightjacket choke. There is lots of jockeying for position between the two - more so than anyone else in the match. Lots of spinning and switches. A part I love is when Karl finally gets Inokis back, Inoki has the fear of death in him and runs towards the ropes, ducks between the second rope, and sends Karl over the top. The word "German Suplex" is discussed amongst the announcers.
The finish comes shortly after. Inoki hits a few dropkicks on Gotch, and then is able to take him down and do a bridging pin for the win. It's a very anti-climactic ending, but works within the context of the match as Gotch had tried to do similar pins to Inoki in previous engagements. However, I would have liked to have seen Gotch become more aggressive and less playful after getting tossed over the ropes (and then dropkicked when trying to enter the ring). Ah well. They shake hands afterwards, and are smiling to each other - it reminds me of when a fight is over and one guy has won, and another guy has lost, but the respect and the love for the game is still there and there are no hard-feelings. Really cool ending, don't see that anymore in wrestling and I would love to see it again.
***1/2-***3/4. That's not on a time-sensitive scale. That's saying if a match today was ***, this match is better. Highly recommended, if just to see Lou Thesz hamming it up.
My buddy calls me up at 6pm for some poker. Since I have the house to myself for the next 2 weeks, I offered to host it. He said about 6 people would be there. 3 hours later, there's 10 playing for $10 each. We split into two tables. $100 pot: $80 for the winner, $20 for second. 60 chips each, singles. At my table is Mark, Doug, George, and Ibrahim (one of these things...). The other table has Charlie, Peter, Adam, Ibs friend, and Shane (Adam being the only white guy at the table - it was a random draw )
I've played with Mark and Doug several times before; Mark is a very tight player, but very good in his own right; Doug is good but not great. First two hands Ib. takes it with a straight and a flush consequtively. He plays smart, knows the angles and how to bet. I am very scared. You see, IMHO, I am a great poker player. I see the angles, I know how much to bet and when, I usually can tell what the guy across from me has... however... I lack... balls.
I see the angles, I know how to play them (Check, Check, Check, Check - it's on me... hmm... I should put out a small bet to test the waters and weed out those who have the cards and those who don't...), but I usually don't play them (...so I check as well). I've shown signs of brilliance - right down to the perfect performance to get more money in the pot when I have the nuts. I can go from playing like Gus Hansen, to playing like, well, Mark. I wear Sunglasses at the table fer crissakes. But, in the end, after about 20-25 games played over the past year (I play about once a week), I still haven't won a game.
Now, we play for $5 usually, so it's not a huge loss. I've played for $10 a handful of times (maybe 3 of those 20 times), so in total I would say I've lost a little under $100 playing. I usually justify it, and continue playing despite the frequent losses, as "having fun". Games usually go on for 3-4 hours, lots of gabbing at the table, jokes, good times. For five bucks, it's worth the fun. As good, or even better, than any movie in theatres. I rarely ever am first out, and usually come in second or third. The more people, the better I am (because the more free cards I get).
Back to the game.
I am down to about 50 after a few hands. I bluff myself 20 extra chips. The next hand I get pocket 10's. Now, next to 3/4 suited, 10's are my favourites. I get aggressive right away and George follows suit. We basically gun it out till I have half my stack in there. He shows his, I show mine. He has KK. I say fuck. The board had an ace and a queen on there, if I had played stronger when the ace showed up I could have taken it, but I was foolish. I played it like I had two tens. After this, I start playing conservatively. Winning some hands, folding most. The other table lost 2 players, so we had to give up George. Turn of the tide.
One of the biggest hands at the table came down to me and Ib. I had ace queen. I play it like I have it. He plays it strong too. Flop has an ace. I bet big, he calls it. The turn has a Queen. In my mind, I am untouchable. But I don't play it all that strongly. Flop comes, I bet, he reraises huge (calls me all in), I call and flip my nuts on the table and take the pot. Shortly after, George was out at the other table and we merge. I have about 120 in chips, feeling very confident. The rest of my table had about 20-40 each. In my mind, I was thinking "I might go into this table as chip leader!"
We show up at the other table and Adam has about 300 in chips - HALF OF THE ENTIRE POT! It is disgusting. I've played Adam before - he's really good, but I've been able to get the better of him before (2/3 suited, all in before the flop, for the flush). But now, the odds are certainly against US. Peter had about the same amount of chips as I, and Peter is a good player as well. I played heads up against him a few games before and was able to bust him up pretty well and mess with his head before deciding to split the pot. I was sitting the the left of Adam, which meant he had the advantage in betting. Not a good position to be in.
Ib gets taken out first by Adam. Then Mark goes shortly after. I am able to take Doug out with A-5 suited. He had A-6 unsuited. I manage to pick up a 5 on the river and build my stack up a lil. Peter is down to about 20 chips, and goes after a few hands. Heads up time, me vs. Adam. I have about 100 chips. He has 500.
He had five times the chips.
12 hands later, I am down to about 30.
He has NINETEEN times the chips.
What happened was pretty simple - I got shit cards. 5 9 unsuited. 3 8 unsuited. It was constant folding. And whenever I DID enter a hand (J 5 unsuited) (Q 4 unsuited), he'd muscle me over after the (shitty) flop. Meanwhile, he is getting four Kings, straights - everything. "I am not playing against you anymore. I clearly am playing against fate." I should note that the blinds are 10/20 by now, and soon they'll be going up to 20/40. I am getting slaughtered.
I know I shouldn't be playing this way - I know "it's not the cards you have in your hand, but the cards you make your opponent think are in your hand", but when you don't even have good enough cards to bluff with and the guy across from you has 19 times what you have, it's hard to make him think you're anything but a loser... so that's what I do. I feed into it, I play it up.
Then, something strange happens. I GET A GOOD HAND! A K! I GO ALL IN! He FOLDS immediately! I GET HIS BLIND! FUCK! The one time I play it strong and have a chance to double up and he has shit cards in his hands. It wasn't big slick that doubled me up - of all hands - it was 10 8 suited. "I've got a good feeling about this hand" I sez. "I shouldn't play this hand." I sez. "This is an awful hand" I sez. "It's a battle between my head and my heart" I sez. I play it. The flop gives me a Jack and a 7. The turn gives me a Queen. I have a inside straight draw. I need a nine. River. Shows. A. NINE! I double up to about 120, maybe 140. I am back in the game. I didn't put a dent in his stack, but I have chips to leverage with now.
Right after that, I play it hard. I steal the blinds on the next hand. A nice declaration of my newfound strength. Somehow, someway (I can't even remember), about 10-15 minutes later and I manage to take the chip lead! Now, this is by far the comeback of the century. There was no way in hell, going into the merge, that anyone could beat Adam. And there was certainly no way in hell that I was going to beat him heads up. Infact, the certainty was so small that the others went to play another game rather than watch the inevitable. Only Doug stayed. "So, you're going to bare witness to my miracle comeback" I said to him as we started to play heads up. "Yup" he laughed. Mark walked in as we were playing. I had about 340 in chips lined up. He walked in, saw it, his eye went WIDE open, he threw up his hands and walked out. That said it all.
Adam stole the blinds a few times - overbet some pots. It was getting close to being even. I saw the momentum swinging and knew I had to stop it. I had Q 9 in my hand and the flop had 2,3,9. Suit didn't really matter. I was dealing. Adam checked, I bet, he reraised big, I went all in and he immediately called. Now, I had top pair. He didn't bet before the flop meaning he didn't have a Queen or a king or an ace, let alone them together. So top pair with a 9 seemed good. Instead, he had 2 3 as well - two pair. I needed a Queen or a 9 - anything else would have killed me. 6 cards would save me. 39 would kill me. That's about 75% chance of losing.
For the first time in my poker playing career, I WON. And not only did I win, I won the largest pot I've ever played for. I won against disgusting odds. I did the improbable. Fuck yeah, motherfucker! I won and let out a big "WHOOO HOOO!!" 80 bucks richer. That's not a lot for most poker players, but for a lil fish like me, that's amazing. The guys at the other table were astonished, and I got congrats from both Mark and Charlie (who've taken my money many-a-time) and I will go to sleep tonight, for just one night, the greatest poker player in the world. A Poker God.
It's in the sig now, so I'll talk about it at-length.
As shown in my first Blogging, this is one of my all-time favourite shows. I just started watching it about 2 months ago, though I had been intent on watching it for quite some time. Herc, over at AICN, had been pimping it along with some of my other favourites (Angel, Buffy, Firefly, LOST), so his tastes closely mirrored mine (though The Inside and Wonderfalls were a bit off), which meant that GG's could possibly be to my liking as well.
The thing is. Well. It's the "Gilmore Girls". It's a chick show. They're going to be talking about their periods and the not-so-fresh feeling, and boy troubles and bra sizes. I don't really care about any of that. There's going to be lots of crying, and they don't even have large titties, and none of them are slayers of any kind. Despite all this, I tried to watch the show. Bits and pieces. And those bits and those pieces weren't terrible, but the dialogue seemed Kevin Smithish. Unnatural. No one, on earth, speaks like that. It's too quick-witted. It seemed "written". It made it difficult for an outside, uninitiated, viewer to watch.
However, it was something that time fixed. After several bits and lots of pieces, I managed to watch a full episode. It was the one from Season 2 where termites have eaten the foundation of the house and Lorelai needs $15,000 to pay for the repairs. Then I saw another full episode - Richard helps Rory with a school project. Then I saw another one - Kirk gets a cat. Then I saw the one that ultimately sold me on the whole show - Lukes uncle dies.
Luke Danes is my favourite character in the show, and perhaps best represents you -the male viewer. He is an outsider-looking-in on the Girls’ universe. He notices their quirks and usually outs them on their BS, he is the straight-man, he tends to say and do what everyone is thinking, and he obviously is in love with Lorelai - and who wouldn’t be?
Lorelai Gilmore is probably my favourite female character in the history of television. The only thing I don’t like about her is her constant apologizing and the same tone of voice she uses when she does it. But the pros certainly outweigh the cons. She’s funny, hot, sympathetic, hot, quirky, hot, friendly and inviting, hot, conflicted, hot, and hot. Oh, and she watches a lot of TV and makes tons of pop culture references. The perfect woman, in my eyes. The creators of the show made Lorelai very-much not girly. She (and Rory) eat a lot, she doesn’t cook (and is proud of it), and generally doesn’t do anything girly (thus far, no “not so fresh feeling”).
Rory Gilmore amuses me perhaps more than she would most. Alexis Bledel -consciously or not- does these weird gestures (usually facial) that you wouldn’t see any where else on tv. Silly grins, strange postures, etc. Add to that her ability to turn any line into comic genius (“Poor Bunny” “Really? Which one” “You’re right, it (reheated french fries) does suck”, and you got yourself an underrated star. She, however, has a bit too much boy trouble - but I think they handle it better than most shows do and the whole Jess/Dean thing slow burns for about 2 seasons.
Dean. Poor Dean. Nice guy. Makes Rory a car. Clingy. Very Clingy. I like Dean, mainly because on the show he’s a giant and it turns out he’s like 6’2 - and I’m 6’2. So he is sorta my benchmark into this universe. I can tell how short people really are on TV if they stand next to him. Say, Rory... she has to be, like, 5’2. Paris? 5’0. Jess? 5’3. Anywho, because of this, I shall support the dude in his future endeavours... even if I normally wouldn’t.
Jess, Lukes troublemaking nephew, is a character that I want to hate, but just can’t. The actor (Milo Somethingorother) is really good at playing a smartass, which has me wondering why he doesn’t get more work. He also bumped like a freak on the bridge dive. When he showed up in Stars Hollow and “This is Hell” was playing, it was a great introduction to his character. Almost as good as Rob Lowes in Tommy Boy (*steps off bus drinking a carton of milk* *kid in bus with face against window* *Lowe with a backfist against the window knocking the kid out* *lady with a baby carriage walking by* *Lowe throws carton into carriage*). Every time Jess does some jackassery, I say “JESS, MOTHERFUCKER!”, because I tend to yell at my TV when watching good shows.
My third favourite character on the show would have to be Paris. One, I think Paris is kinda hot. Two, Paris is hilarious. That’s about it. Oh, and three, Paris is kinda evil. I like how people who don’t know Paris react to her. I also say “PARIS, MOTHERFUCKER!” whenever Paris does something evil.
Madeline and Louise are Paris’ cronies. I don’t know how or why they are, but they are. One flirts on the border of being hot, and the other is pretty hot. I don’t know which one is which, but the blonde should make like Christ and get nailed... by me... not that I crucified Jesus or anything. There are two particular scenes that make these two godkings. One is in my sig, and the other is when Paris asks them to study with her on a friday night (..but we have dates...)
The Parents (Elizabeth and Richard) are enjoyable. Richard, in particular, always makes good use of his screen time. I think they give
Then there are the townsfolk. Miss Patty doesn’t offend me. Sally Struthers and the tall dude are great. Sukie is great fun. Jackson rules for many reasons. Taylor used to annoy me, but then I started to look at him as a hitlerish character and he became fantastic. The Asian mom and daughter annoy me most of the time; the mom because she is a prudish bitch and the daughter because she tries too hard to be a rock aficionado.
KIRK is the motherfucking man. Pure gold. He should get his own spin-off, or something. The 24 hour dance marathon. The video. His photography. The odd jobs around town. KIRK, MOTHERFUCKER.
As for the show itself, I was really surprised at its serialized nature. Even some of the little things that sprout up in one episode will find its way into another down the line (Lorelai stealing her mothers pen, Rory finding it under a cushion a few episodes later asking her mother to return it). And it’s paced really well. They give 4 episodes to Lorelai and Max, which on paper doesn’t seem like a lot, but I think they maximize the potential of the storyline in those 4 episodes. Then, right after that, comes Jess (ok, the Harvard eps, then Jess). And then there’s Sukies wedding. They didn’t serialize it enough (like, say, Carnivale) to where it felt like the entire season was one big story with no distinction, so each episode has its own personality, but they didn’t separate it enough to where there wasn’t a throughline between every episode. Very good storytelling.
I also like the show’s “gimmick”. The show is not just about a young mother and her teenage daughter being “best friends”. Rory, at 16, is the same age Lorelai was when she had Rory. So Lorelai is feeling a lot of the same things her mother felt 16 years ago, and in that comes some realizations and understanding. These are not simple characters - they have depth and they think and they are conflicted and they influence and they are influenced. It’s not a girly show as many of the issues brought up in it are universal, and never once does it feel like I’m watching a chick show.
Overall, this is a very funny show that -if you sit down and force yourself through one episode- should surprise and hook you. They give each character their “moment”, and once you get to know those characters, then those moments become very enjoyable. I get happy when I watch this show, which is rare. I smile when watching this show. It’s a warm show, and it doesn’t play down to anything, it doesn’t make you feel guilty for watching it; it’s just a good show.
I recommend watching episode 2.1. There are plenty of funny moments in it, plus there are some serious ones. It gets across some of the main elements and themes in the show, and explores the characters’ relationships with each other. In particular, the dinner table scene with Richard and Dean. And when Elizabeth finds out that Lorelai is getting married and what she says to Richard afterwards. It’s a very accessible episode - you don’t need to know a lot about the show to watch it-, and those two scenes break a lot of your preconceptions.
I wrote this (probably) 4 years ago for (probably) a Writers Craft class in high school (Grade 13, OAC, something silly for only Ontario students to go through). I used to write overly-needlessly-uselessly dramatic stories about really simple things - often things I see, say, on a teachers desk - that usually ends with some horrific realization on mankind. I wrote about Chris Benoits' arms once, and it amused those around me so much that I was asked to read it infront of the class and it tore the place down. If I find it, I will post it. Though I think this is a better piece. I will post more of my high school essays and what-not here, because dammit, I was smrt.
Unseen Glory: The 3-Hole-Punch Story
Standing there. Silent. Suspended. Secluded. Alone. Glistening in the light, the mighty 3-Hole-Punch rests stoically, waiting for its time to truly shine. A figure passes; will it? Will it. will it? Will it. will it? Will it. will it? It won't. Again, passed by. Tears are for the weak, one must remain strong in times of darkness. No Tears. No Love. No Light. Just Silence. It's sort of sad, in a way, to watch such a proud and noble thing as this just go unused, undiscovered, unappreciated, unloved. But life, in it's own little way, is sad. We live. We die. Yet the hole punch, the hole punch is forever. Forever tormented, forever punching holes in stuff. Generations shall pass it by, from Grandparent, to Parent, to Child, to Parent, To Grandparent, maybe an Aunt or Uncle once in a while, a drunken college-frat brother, some brash young wild buck with eyes that will look into your soul and discover all the lies that you worked so hard to hide, the woman you loved but tore your heart out when she too discovered the lies, and so it goes, holes in the paper of infinity, the circular pieces of the damned, the rubber collection plate of mortality, the shuffling of the documents in the book of forever, occasionally taking a page out and putting another in.
And still, there rests the hole punch, it's base and its lever form a crude, yet provoking bill of a mouth, waiting to devour whatever is placed in its mighty jaws... Yet always pressed to be closed to be open. The lion is king of the jungle, Zeus is king of the gods, the hole punch is king of the desk, and man, man is king of nothing. Not destiny, not time, not fate, not life nor love, not anything. Except for one. In the tiny world of the desk, the microcosm of mankind, a place of order and disorder, man controls one thing and one thing only; And there it sits, while man tries to foolishly control life and love and fate and time, there stands the 3-hole-punch. Silent. Secluded. Alone. Waiting.
First almost-full RAW I've watched in a while...
I don't like anything about Carlito other than the way he sold Hogans punches last week, so I didn't like the Cabana. Jericho's Jean/Tshirt/Sports Jacket style is great, and those shades are swank. Much better than the T-shirt look he had as a face. Piper looks so oooold.
I didn't bother watching Masters/Tajiri cause Masters is awful and he has been wrestling the same match since January.
I actually enjoyed Snitsky for once - I enjoy his relationship with Edge and Lita. It's lighthearted, and the fact that Lita has ignored the whole baby thing is amusing to me. Plus, I know a guy who licked a chicks feet before (while drunk) and it has been a running joke between the two during poker nights. Edge should get Snitsky foot fetish porn mags as gifts. The replay of the Hardy video was silly.
Carlito/Benjamin was boring and Benjamins matches shouldn't be boring. The finish was pretty good, though it was obvious. I think it would have been better for Carlito to "act" knocked out, for the count-out, and then get up right away and then leave with the title. Reminds me of Money Inc. vs. Natural Disasters WM finish, so it wasn't a very different way to prolong the angle, but at least it shows that someone actually WANTS the title, and that someone actually wants to KEEP the title. They need more of that - put some other guys in this feud. Carlito would be better in a triple threat or fatal fourway than a singles match.
LOTC's outting of Cena playing Will Smith makes every one of his promos automatically hilarious. He plays too much to the crowd, and he doesn't really say anything. But he's natural on the mic and one of the best speakers they have, so it's just an issue of scripting. He needs to run into the crowd some more, that was great the one time he did it. The "Cheap" thing is awful. Jericho didn't get enough shots in and everyone and their mother knows he is going to lose at Summerslam and that this feud is below Cena at this point. Beatdowns won't make Jericho a threat to Cena, they need to -GASP- be a little more creative to get him over in this feud so it won't be a total blow-out. The Bischoff stuff was needless. Everyone beats up Bischoff - I gave him my patented Rudodriver just the other day - so Cena isn't really blazing a trail, he's following the path. I mark for "The Champ Is Here", though.
The DIVA search thing last week was fun because of the promise of a titty falling out. This week they did horrible stripper routines. The girl that did the flips and then shaked her titties made me cry for women everywhere. Seeing chicks who are half naked everyweek be half naked this week doesn't make it special. I have the internet. I am on the internet. Women who are always in bikinis dancing around in bikinis does nothing for me. Back when I was 13 and Sunny -who was 10x's hotter than any of these chicks- started to shake her ass in that bikini video, well, that was hot. But it's 10 years later, this shit don't fly.
I do find 2 of those chicks to be enjoyable, though. The one that is trying so hard to be ROCK AND ROLL~! with her skullcap and arm-band-thingies, because it's pretty clear that's all an act and if this were a few years ago she'd be in hip-hop garb and the other one who's titty popped out last week because, well, her titty popped out last week. Now, if they started to make out next week and put their respective hands down their shorts and felt each other up, then this DIVA thing may have some promise. As is, even the 13 year old RRR would change the channel.
The Kurt Angle invitational had me going "what if he won?" at the last seconds of the match, which I guess is mission accomplished. If there was a case for bringing back squash matches, this is it. Good work, the crowd seemed into it, and no one died.
Matt Hardy jumping Edge was a bit wonky. The run-in was a nice change in pace. Hardy bashing the WWE is great - probably my favourite part of the whole thing. This is going to get tired, fast. How long till Summerslam? You have to wonder, especially if you are Matt Hardy, what happens after the feud is over? Is this feud meant to get Edge over as a heel, meaning that he wins in the end? What if Hardy gets mega-over? What if he doesn't? Questions, Questions, Questions.
The HBK interview could have been so much better. I think they dropped the ball quite a bit there and were relying on the Superkick at the end to sustain the heat.
The first of the RRRetrospective series deals with the Matt Hardy/Edge feud. The date was May 2nd, 2005. It is certainly relevant today, since on RAW they kicked-started a feud between the two. I enjoyed it and some of the little things they did (the camera angle during the arrest, Hardy promoting ROH) but it wasn't realistic enough - it was too obviously 'worked'. Below has me outlining how to make the feud "real".
I don't know how much money could be made on Matt/Edge. The appeal, for the fans, is that this is real. It is not something the WWE wants, it is not something that is forced on 'us', it is something that the fans have chosen to be interested in. If they (the WWE) made it into a storyline, it would cease to be real. The appeal of a match between the two would have to come from "whether or not Matt would cooperate". They would have to make it seem like that there is a very real possibility that Matt would shoot on Edge in that match. They (the writers) don't know how to do that. Bischoff would LOVE to get his hands on this storyline, while Vince just wants it to go away.
For a storyline to work, they'd have to use all their resources to make it work. Have Edge work a house show in (or near) South Carolina (or where ever Matt lives) and have Hardy rush the ring and get a shot in before immediately getting taken out. Have him actually get arrested. Have the report of his arrest get "leaked" to The Smoking Gun, mug shot and all. Have him do a commentary on his site trying to explain the matter. If this situation has proved anything, it is that information travels fast on the internet and with the IWC. "Leak" a video (a fan cam) on-line of Matt attacking Edge, have the WWE try to "remove" the video to no avail. Put plants in the audience that are dressed up like Matt Hardy and have them interact with Edge as if they are teasing him. Have him rip up signs on the matter. Make sure very few people know the "truth" of what is going on so that Meltzer, or anyone else, will report that it's a work.
Then have Edge open up his own website and talk about the matter. Create a messageboard for him, have Matt Hardy post on that messageboard, and let them air their dirty laundry. Part of the appeal of this story for fans is that "we're not supposed to be reading this". Have Edge apologize and then have the matter resolved. Matt posts on his website that he has cooled down and that he is "over" the issue. The WWE feels "safe" hiring Matt Hardy back, and put him on a 90 day probationary period. Matt makes his return to television on a night that Edge has "off". The only reference to Matts leave made on television is that Hardy had some "personal issues" that he had to take care of, and now is back better than ever. To this point, not a single word has been said on TV about the two fighting. Then, after a week or two, they put Matt and Edge in a program together over the most absurd reason possible, just to have them feud. Say, Edge steals Matts wristband.
They have a tag match against each other on RAW, they only interact once and Matt "accidentally" injures Edge and the match can't be finished (A chairshot that was a lil too hard, maybe?). Have everyone act confused, have the show halted for a second, go to a commercial break and comeback with JR and King go over what happened, and then go on with the show. Report on WWE.com that Edge received x amount of stitches, have Hardy say on his website that it was an accident, have Edge say on his website that there are no hard feelings. They have a house show match, the same thing happens. Edge gets "injured". Reports online are coming in that there is heat on Hardy and that he is "taking liberties" with Edge in the ring and that Edge is getting concerned that he will get injured in another match and wants out of the program with Hardy. A match, nonetheless, is set up on PPV. A report of Edge and Hardy getting into a fight backstage is leaked, this time it was Edge who initiated it. It was "broken up" before anything could happen. The WWE wants to fire Hardy and plans to after the PPV, but they can't call off the match because they already set it up and have nothing else to fill it with. Again, all of this is "leaked" information.
I think that working the internet is always a bad idea, but in this case, I think it is the only way to make good money from the two having a match together. A traditional storyline won't work, because the heat for this feud hasn't been garnered in a traditional way.
When I was looking for the Hardy post, I stumbled on this. So consider this a BONUS post.
The theme I think would be interesting, is "You won't believe your eyes". The positioning would be what the WWE offers, you won't find anywhere else.
I see the current trends on television being more focused on melo-dramatic, weaving, arc-based storylines. These feature well-developed, multi-layered characters with backstories. There is no reason why the WWE can't have this as well, storyline and character-wise. It just takes some effort from the writing team to come up with histories for characters and provide them with motivation for wrestling. Once this is established, pairing wrestlers-up to feud should be easy. Mcguffins can be used from time to time (a tournament perhaps) to get some rivalries, stables, etc. together. The WWE should be looking to put out an intelligent product, rather than the LCD shit that they've been spewing forever. The occasional smart twist and turn, revolving characters, long, draw-out, cohesive, tight, storylines and satisfying conclusions are all key. If they are able to successfully do that, word might get around that the WWE is putting on better storylines than major networks, people might tune in to see it just out of disbelief.
Then comes the sport aspect of it. From the sound of the way I want the writing, it may sound like it would be a 30/70 thing... and it is. There shouldn't be so many matches on RAW. There's no point to them and they force the writing team to come up with lame reasons why the match is happening and it takes the importance off of wins. PPV's are where the matches should happen, because in the end it's what the fans ultimately want to see and they should have to pay to see it.
Each match should be like a battle. Going into these matches, there should be the possibility that a wrestler won't come out in full-health. They should be built up with interviews, background pieces, lengthy entrances and introductions. The wrestlers on the TV show shouldn't be HHH and Batista. They should be used to build guys for future PPV's and contenderships, and the main events should feature popular b-level wrestlers. To hype the PPV's on TV, you have wrestler interviews, featurettes, promo-packages, etc. This means that the WWE has to trim the fat and get rid of a lot of the wrestlers. They should have, maybe, 20 wrestlers on the roster. The other wrestlers they can sign to short-term contracts and develop as they see fit. This may also mean going to smaller venues, but since they average 4000 fans per show, I don't see that as a big issue. This is working under the premise that RAW is a television show that is used to promote PPV's. The money doesn't come from house shows, it comes from ad revenue and PPV buys.
There should be a wide-variety of styles featured in the matches. A cruiserweight match should be a cruiserweight match, not a cruiserweight-wrestles-like-heavyweight match. Each division should be defined as well. "You won't believe your eyes" becomes particularly true here, as wrestlers will go all out rather than holding back. Since there will be less matches per-show, they shouldn't run the risk of numbing the fans or injuring the wrestlers. Depending on what you want your outcome to be, matches could range from 30 seconds to 30 minutes. This is a better star-making system than they currently have, because it can allow guys to be "made" in 2 or 3 matches (or even 1) if it is worked right. The two guys in my sig are an example of that. I'd like a more fight-like atmosphere, because for me, that's simply more exciting. UFC does it very well, and they get me to buy their PPV's.
I don't think JR and the King could support this through their announcing, but they are still needed for some familiarity. They could act as the "hosts" of the show, like Friday Night Fights, and then send it down to the better announcers at ringside. JR could participate as the 3rd man on PPVs as well. There wouldn't really be a need for general managers, however a governing body could be used, or a match maker for that matter. Each show would be used to get a different match at the PPV over, and maybe throw in some little hints at things to come (some of the more traditional wrestling aspects could be used, "who is that guy in the crowd and why is wrestler x so focused on him?")
So when I say there is a 30/70 wrestling/entertainment division, that 70% would be primarily focused on getting the 30% over.
This week I've read people defending the WWE on firing a pregnant woman, defending the WWE on exploiting the deaths of thousands of people for a quick boo (which, I heard, it didn't get), that WWE.com is now a smark website, that because "it's television" anything can air on it, that because "it's wrestling" that promotions can be as sleazy as they want and fans should accept that.
Never have I seen such senseless WWE apology.
And I don't understand why. It's not like they deserve it. They put out bad shows, they insult your intelligence, they actively try to offend you - yet there you are chugging away coming up with lame reasons to defend this silly company. I'd say that some people are just doing it to troll, but why waste the time and energy? No, I think these people are naturally stupid. Or Blind. Take your pick, dumbasses: Are you stupid or blind? Do you willingly defend the WWE because you luv them so much, or do you just not know better?
After all the shit the WWE has done, what *I* find most offensive are the people who think what they do is acceptable. I don't expect much out of the WWE anymore, and find it very hard to watch even a few minutes of their programming. I do, however, expect a lil more out of people posting on this board. I call it "BFS" or "Battered Fan Syndrome". Either because they have no alternative ways of viewing wrestling, or because the WWE is all they know, this sort of fan becomes dependent on one company to fill their wrestling needs. And as such, this fan tries to come up with reasons as to why they watch such shitty programming. They convince themselves that "things will get better", or that "it's so bad it's good", and they close their eyes to everything negative surrounding it.
Well I fucking hate this kind of fan. You all make me sick. If you took one second and took a step outside you'd see how bad the WWE is and how fucking ridiculous it is to be defending such a piece of shit company.
And for those saying "Wrestling has always been like this". Well guess fucking what? Just because wrestling has been racist doesn't mean that wrestling _should_ be racist, or that wrestling _has to_ be racist. That's not a suitable excuse. It was wrong then, it's wrong now. It was stupid then, it's stupid now. It's the result of simple minds who can't think of anything better. It's lazy, and it's preys on everything wrong with society. It's total lowest common denominator, and if you find yourself defending it, then you're the lowest of the low, you fucking scum.
Wrestling can be better than this. The other day I watched a wrestling match that showed just that. Misawa/Kobashi vs. Kawada/Taue wasn't about the worst in people, it was about the best in people. It was about trying in vain, it was about sacrifice and friendship, it was about the human spirit, it was about the will to win. A lot of people, especially Vince McMahon, forget that wrestling is about CHEERING not booing. Wrestling doesn't have to be for the LCD, it can be art. But the WWE doesn't see it that way. Vince McMahon doesn't see it that way. But you know what can change his mind? US. But not as long as there are still people who will blindly lick up any shit the WWE gives them. The WWE, both shows, are the worst shows on television today. Realize that. The WWE, both shows, CAN be the best shows on television today. Realize that. So why are you willing to accept the worst when you can be getting the best? Stop being stupid. Stop being blind. Open your eyes and your mind.
Just finished watching Mitsuharu Misawa/Kenta Kobashi vs. Toshiaki Kawada/Akira Taue (6/9/95 - World Tag Titles) . I've had it on my hard drive for a while now, but it's 43 minutes long and AJPW matches tend to take lots of motivation to watch (not that they're bad, they just take a different mindset and I've been in my "shoot style" mode for a while now and I have to adjust it to "get into" such kind of matches). And. Um. Best match I've ever seen. I don't think I have ever said that about any match on the first viewing, but there it is. This is the new standard for excellence. I never thought a tag match would take the top spot, cause, well, here's the list of some of my favourite matches:
Benoit/Ohtani vs. Sasuke/Tiger
... ONE tag match. They usually aren't done as well as singles matches, but this was just perfect. So much has already been said by many others, there is no need to get into the specifics. Justin Baisden has a more in-depth recap/review at Review #1 that is more PBP and Chris Coey has one at Review #2 that is more about the story of the match. However, I will comment on what stood out to me.
1. Payback spots. I love'em, and this was full of em. From Kawada's initial dick-ass kick to Misawa while he was on the apron, to Kobashi doing a dropkick to Taues leg, almost every action had a similar reaction which made for a nice, self-contained story. You don't see a lot of that stuff nowadays, and they did it so naturally. Kobashis attempts at the moonsault were particularly great and made for an effective nearfall.
2. The Story. I've seen Kandori/Hokuto, and I've seen Misawa/Kawada, and I enjoyed them both. But not enough to rank them in my top 10. This has been said by others, and those who _would_ rank the matches in their top ten would say "you don't know the whole story". Which is true enough. The call-back spots in those matches may be over my head, I may not look at it the same way as those others.
This tag match has that sort of depth, BUT, it is also very easy to follow for any unfamiliar viewer. Kawada HATES Misawa. Misawa, knowing Kawada hates him and will do anything to beat him, and since he is the top guy -in turn- does not like Kawada. Taue, Kawada's running buddy, is there to kick ass and help his friend out, but isn't really involved in the spat. He has a stoic look on his face throughout, and just likes to hurt people. Kobashi, on the other hand, wears his heart on his sleave. The match is not only about Kawada and Misawa, it's also about the outsiders caught up in it.
Kobashi is like Misawa's dog. Fiercely loyal, willing to risk his life to save his master. His leg is injured, and Kawada/Taue continually go after it. At the start of the match, Kobashi is game. Despite the injury, he still believes he is a vital member of the team. Slowly, as Kawada/Taue pick him apart, he becomes less and less useful, and almost becomes a detriment. The spot which changes his role in the match is when he is unable to save Misawa from a chokeslam off the apron from Taue. After that, the best Kobashi can do is take the brunt of the assault on himself in hopes that Misawa can muster enough energy for the comeback. I. Love. That.
I went into this match cheering Kawada/Taue. But as the match went on, as Kobashi sacrificed himself and as Kawada/Taue acted like total bastards, at the end I was behind Kobashi/Misawa. The spot at the end where Kobashi tries to protect Misawa and both Kawada and Taue try to pull him off and he's just fighting with everything he has and they finally get him off and then MURDER him with an Backdrop/Nodawa combo... I was like "NOOOO!!! STOP! STOP! THIS IS UNFAIR!!". It was Kawada/Taue going too far, IMO. Great stuff.
3. The build. They paced it amazingly well. The match was primarily strikes, but when they used their moves every single one had an impact and was necessary. The tags and heat spots were done to perfection. The match went on for 43 minutes and they went through several stages which made those minutes fly by. The final 10-15 minutes were particularly well done. Kawada/Taue having the advantage, then Misawa/Kobashi having it, and finally back to Kawada/Taue. It's hard to describe how effective it was done, because each time one team had control it seemed like they were going to win it. The team that was in control were in full control and the turn of the tide was logical. When Misawa did the German Suplex to Kawada for the near fall. Then the Tiger Suplex for the nearer fall. Then the Tiger Driver. I said "Taue HAS TO make the save here" because the way they built it, there was no way Kawada could have kicked out. And guess what? Taue made the save. PERFECT! Misawas ill-fated comeback at the end was so beautiful, because the way they built it, even though you knew he was climbing a mountain, you wanted to believe he could win.
I'll finish it up with one more review, from DVDVR 100 Issue:
The TV-on-DVD addiction that I somewhat have has offered me the pleasure of falling in love with many TV shows that I have never seen during their original airing. Right now I am watching Gilmore Girls season 2 and have fallen head-over-heels for it. So much so that I am wondering where it stands in my All-Time Listings of TV shows. I am breaking the list up into 2 sections, 22-minutes and 44 minutes. 22 minutes shows are typically sitcoms and cartoons and are differently designed than "hour-longs". Since you can do more in 1 hour than in 22 minutes, it just isn't really fair to compare the two. The list below is more like me putting down shows that I love, the problem will come in ranking them.
This section means a lil less to me than the 60 minutes section. 22 minutes is a lot less time to develop bonds with characters and feel tremendous swings in emotions. AD, DS, Simpsons, Seinfeld, and probably CS are in the top 5. DBZ wouldn't be anything less than 6, as there was a period where I llllllooooooved that show, AB and Garg. were two shows that helped me develop my tv tastes early in life, and even though they are cartoons, they have some impressive depth and storytelling. Corner Gas and News Radio would be 9 and 10 picks.
1. The Simpsons - even though I can't stand them right now, and haven't enjoyed an episode since maybe 1998 or 99, they still had an amazing peak.
2. Seinfeld - I think this show was tremendously consistent and it still holds up well today.
3. Arrested Development - I'll have to wait for Season 2 to come out on DVD to give it a higher ranking, but the first season was one of the best I have ever seen and was very, VERY well written.
4. Daily Show - one of the few "can't miss" shows for me. I will stay up late to watch this, even if I have to get up early the next morning.
5. Chappelle Show - At its funniest, it probably is thee funniest.
6. Dragon Ball Z - I watched this in the late 90's on YTV, when they cut off the new episodes when Goku landed on Namek, I almost cried. Fuck.
7. Astro Boy - an early favourite, a fair amount of it stands up to this day. Really dark for a kids show, it taught a lot of good messages and I am glad to have seen it as a child.
8. Gargoyles - Some really strong writing and good twists, it got crazy in the end, but the first season and change was strong.
9. News Radio - This might go higher the more of the DVD I watch, but for now it's here. I like all the characters and it really had fun with them.
10. Corner Gas - It's a funny Canadian show, theres lots of smart humour in it, and it doesn't go low brow. Davis rules.
- The Shield
- Gilmore Girls
- Star Trek DS9
The problem here is where Buffy used to be my #1 fave show, since time has been moving as it often does, and as I watch and fall in love with new shows, the Vampire Slayer falls down the list. I am looking at Gilmore Girls as a top 5, and maybe even top 3 TV show. LOST is certainly up there too. Survivor is a bit of a surprise pick because I never really looked at it as a favourite, but there have been 4 or 5 seasons where I watched it religiously and that should count.
Firefly may be moving down the list too, because of this whole screening and movie thing that has kinda been pissing me off as of late (I am really starting to hate other Firefly fans). I still hold it in high regard because there was this period of time where I was insane about it, like I am right now about GG, like I usually never am about any show, even the ones I really like. I think LOST is definitely in the top 3, I think Angel is in the top 3, and Firefly and Gilmore Girls are in the top 5. CSI, Buffy, The Shield, Carnivale, Star Trek DS9 battle it out for 9 and under. Survivor would be number ten.
2. Lost - tremendous first season, the last episode had me freaking out which put it over the top, for me. Outstanding in every single category.
1. Angel - I forgot how much I loved this show, but this probably should be #1 cause I freaked out more for this show than any other. Fucking wicked consistant, Season 2-5 was a fucking masterpiece. This should be #1. I am changing it.
3. Gilmore Girls - I get this warm feeling after watching every episode. I think I will have to write an seperate post to explain how fucking good this show is.
4. Firefly - Gah. Fallen! I'll explain this in another post. I'll say right now that after seeing every episode at least 6 times, I can't bring myself to watch any of them. They seem a lil cold to me now.
5. CSI - Amazingly, I can find replay value in this show. Grissom is my hero, I love all the cast and the way they interact. I must see Season 5, though, as I've missed most of it. Their peak episodes are fantastic.
6. The Shield - I love silly and fantastical shows, as this list proves. This is the only show that isn't like that. It's serious, it's straight, and there are no supernatural forces. Unless you call Cleetus Van Damme a supernatural force. It's a badass show with some great acting and well written stories and plot developments.
7. Buffy - Too many "poorish" seasons for me to put any higher, and I've been well removed from the great years. Still, to make it in the top 10 is an acheivement, and it deserves to be here on season 5 alone. One of these days I'll pick up some Buffy DVDs and revisit and see why it belonged higher.
8. Star Trek DS9 - I had to pick a star trek, since I love Voyager and Next Gen as wel, but this stands out for having thee best star trek episode, as well as being a lot more consistent.
9. Carnivale - I need to see Season 2, but Season 1 was really fucking good. Some have said that they slow played it too much, but I enjoyed it. No one particular episode stands out, but rather, the entire story is what I remember best.
10. Survivor - the first season, the second season, the all star season, and the last 2 seasons I have watched with great interest (the last two with semi-great interest) so I guess it deserves to be here unless I can think of one better. Boston Rob 4 Ever.