The Midnight News
Q: What can stop an earthquake?
Decent column as always, though. Not like I'm paying for it.
And you never will...
Hello Soccer Marks, I'm Chris and this is the Midnight News. I think I made up for last week's nightmare of a column... this week I've mixed the WIT with the SERIOUS with the ANGER and combined it all into a nice vat of completely RECYCLED column! And I'm not even going to mention ECW's return to Philly... because I wasn't there and I don't care...
Although the most fascinating career track of ALL wrestling... that being CM Punk's, seems to have really begun... but that's a story for another time.
Let's get to it...
A SECRET MESSAGE; A HIDDEN NOTE
No one's gonna get this except for ONE person.
Saturday.... pizza.... 9 goddam slices.... and I INHALED those fuckers... hardly tasted them... and I ate them with a big, sad, smile. Washed them down with a glass of my TEARS!
IF the someone in question is reading THEN the someone in question is SMILING and perhaps giggling... IF the person is reading.
The faggy behavior parade is about to end...
I SHALL HAVE MY VENGENCE!!! (twomonthsfromnowonwwe24/7foronly$6amonth)
NOOOO I didn't see it... I saw ECW and TNA back to back... the poor wallet must be replenished...
But I know what happened... so do you... so let's make comments...
And, as always... I'll start off strong and detailed and somewhere towards the end I'll start giving less and less comments... it's how I am.
Kurt Angle vs Randy Orton
-Kurt Angle is my favorite wrestler for a whole SHITLOAD of reasons...
-There's a reason why Randy Orton keeps getting pushed.. he's a natural in there.
-At first he looked goofy, but Angle working his mouth around that mouthpiece is a GREAT visual
-And this style does protect him... it's ironic that the "Shootfighter" of the WWE also happens to be the worker closest to getting completely crippled.
-At some point within this last year, Randy Orton has fallen in love with chinlocks... long, restful, chinlocks.
-At some point within this past year, Randy Orton has fallen in love with Juventud Guerrera... and his long, restless, Juvecock
-Orton won with an RKO... which is DUMB... Angle should now be unstoppable.
-Backstage, Vince berated and shoved some kid in a wheelchair out of his office... and it turned out to be a huge fan of his... one thinks that every so often, Vince gives up on getting mainstream acceptance and just says "fuck it, the world thinks I'm white trash anyway..." and does stunts like this.
-Seriously... why don't they just let us hear the writers crack up off-camera during these bits... might as well go all out.
Umanga vs Eugene
-Eugene trotted out Hacksaw Duggan, Doink, and Kamala for this... Umanga trashed all but Kamala... who is portrayed as a wild animal. There's something sad/hilarious/yet TRUE about the fact that Umanga (a SAMOAN, I might remind) tore through 3 white guys (one being a CLOWN) but ran off when confronted by a Jungle Black guy... alas, where's Reverend Al Sharpton when we need him the most? Hell, where's Bill Cosby???
Mick Foley vs Ric Flair
-I'm not sure what to make of Foley's pre-match announcement that he wasn't even gonna TRY to make this a good match... maybe just to annoy Flair.
-Flair won the first fall by out-wrestling Foley... so Foley went all Hardcore on Flair and got himself DQ'ed for two straight fall losses...
-It's like... Flair won the first one by doing a Flair match and Foley lost the second one by doing a Foley match, but since Flair was ALL sorts of fucked up with the barbed wire bat and the monster bloodfest, he didn't exactly look like the winner... so we all got a taste of these two working each other's style...
-Still.. I look at Foley and can't help but wonder how many times he thinks to himself, "Oh Jesus Christ WHY didn't you assholes buy my non-wrestling books!! I wanted to be DONE with this fuckin' shit!"
-Carlito watched at Torrie and Maria oiled themselves down for no apparent reason... meanwhile we are reminded that Raw, which has been HOME of the Women's division since the split, is having a PPV withOUT a Chick title defense... and where IS Stratus anyway?... She's been gone for two weeks... along with Chris Masters and... Joey Mercury and... no, I'm not even going there... no way.... sorry, ain't happening... they just don't have anything to build on since that idiot Victoria went and broke Beth Phoenix's jaw. All's well in DIVA-Land... Trish is just getting a rest... is all. Got a lot going... very busy girl. She rules... I'm gonna marry her one day.
-And the scary part is... I seem to be the only writer here who has noticed/cared that there is NO chick title storyline/match to be found... and no one has even MENTIONED Trish's name in weeks... the best chick worker in the last few years... who has worked her ass off to build a women's division around on and she's... like... forgotten... scary.
Carlito vs Johnny Nitro vs Sheldon Benjamin
-Apparently, this was an X-Division-like spotfest... but a GOOD one...
-And also, someone must of told Carlito that it's time to fucking get his afro in gear... cuz he worked his ASS OFF...
-You know about all those rumors about how Melina was thrown iout of Smackdown for being more or less a bitch? I'm thinking they are true... she is SO shoved down on the backburner. I mean... she was the STAR of the MNM crew...
-And this Johnny Nitro... he looks a LOT like JD Michaels, don't he?
-This observational recap of mine is starting to sound/feel a LOT like Dave Scherer's douchey Rhetorical and Unanswerable Questions
-I'm watching this show while eating potato chips, but not a LOT of them, I eat them in moderation because I lost 2000 pounds and now am cut like Randy Orton and Vince McMahon fears mew and I crack myself up and Mike Johnson has to suck my nuts on a daily basis if he knows what's good for him.
-Nitro won... don't expect this to last long.
-Backstage, Heyman told his ECW REBELS that there will be an equal amount of Heat Lumberjacks in the Cena/Sabu match. I expect to see Tommy Dreamer erupt in tears one day live and shout, "HARDCORE IS DEAD, PAUL!! IT'S DEAD!!"
-Backstage, Vince tries to use a penis pump and gets a face-full of green goo... I once tried to fuck a girl with a MONSTER yeast infection and pretty much gt the same result... except there was more yellow in her... and... well... I still can't take a crap without sobbing in agony.
Edge vs Rob Van Dam
-When does Lita start wrestling again?
-RVD won... probably because EVERYONE said that Edge was going to win. So Vince told us all to fuck off. This would be the THIRD time in a week someone told me personally to fuck off... it isn't fun.
-This was a brilliant match. Edge is sufficiently earning his push and making us ALL forget about what he did to Matt Hardy.
Kane vs Kane
-Kane won... I'm as bored with this angle as you are. Kane needs to go to Smackdown... like, YESTERDAY.
Sabu vs John Cena
-Sabu didn't win.
-And the joke here is... it's like FINALLY DAWNING on everyone that the whole POINT of involving Cena with ECW is to earn Cena "street cred" with the supermarks... unfortunately, just like with EVERYTHING they do with Cena, it's so forced and choreographed... that anyone with half a brain can see right through this... it's like how the sweeten the audience noise during Smackdown and TNA... it's like how they used to CRANK UP the volume during Hulk Hogan's walk to the ring in the 80's so loud that Vince couldn't speak over the crowd noise. They ALMOST shook the cameras because... well by God, the Hulkster was so popular the fans nearly shook the building to the ground.
-To FURTHER drive home the Cena = Extreme thus we all must love him, they followed the match up with RVD giving him "props" and offering him a title match on Raw the next night... ooo, see! RVD now RESPECTS Cena! He's KEWL!!
DX vs The Spirit Squad
-I hear it was a fun match. Nice to see HHH loosen up. HBK looks too old for this nonsense, tho'.
-Enough with the Spirit Squad, tho'. If McMahon wants to be unique, he should do what he's never done before when running this "Boiss vs the Rebels" gimmick... he should hire OUTSIDE contractors to come in for a PPV match... someone we've never seen in a WWE ring before, or not for a long, long time. Bruiser Brody available? How about Stan Hansen? No? Umm... come on, there's GOTTA be some super insane, extra-tough Jap wrestler who could come in and blow minds and work stiff for a month and set up a huge showdown!
-Ugh... he'll probably use Umanga next.
So that's the PPV... by most accounts, it was a decent show... can't wait to see it in August on 24/7... beauty.
SLYCKER THAN HANDCUFFS
And the sort of drama that indy wrestling THRIVES ON... the Ballard of Slyck Wagner Brown and April Hunter, seems to have come to a close... in a courtroom.
So, for trying to slice off April's titties, among other things..., Slyck Wagner Brown was found GUILTY on a whole litany of charges... but doesn't get any jail time...
He DOES have to do community service... and, if he's reading, I would suggest the following...
-Pouring soup into bowls at homeless shelters (free grub, yo)
-Picking up highway litter (you'll be amazed at what you'll find)
-washing cop cars (easy and refreshing on a warm summer day)
-drug counseling (great way to pick up bony chicks)
-one of those "Scared Straight" high school deals (you can swear your head off at high school kids and call them bitches... how cool is that!)
Anyway, that is just a side-bar to the real story here... which is, how did a black man get off without jail time in a CONNECTICUT courtroom?!?
Well... apparently, he threw himself at the mercy of the Judge...
My own personal sources told me EXACTLY what Slyck said to the Judge that earned him the court's sympathy AND generosity... the brother really did Slyck his way out of the ol' Greybar Hotel....
According to my source, (not IDing him but his name RHYMES WITH "Shay-Dee Bike-ulls", Slyck laid out the following excuses:
-"Yer honor, PLEASE... I had to pretend for years that the girl didn't have a penis"
-"If it pleasums the courtship... I lost the bitch to THAT white hippie fag with the feminineimum frame. Haven't I been punished enough?"
-"Your Honorarium... she pulled da plug just as I wuz about to win at GTA San Andreas... now what's a brotha to do?"
-"Ahh, dem titties are fake anyways... she would'na even feel them get removed."
-"Oh Lordys... b'fore you arresticate me... how bout checking that White hippie's Visa! I t'ink he be illegal!"
-"Free me and I'll score you tickets to Wrestlemania!!"
-"I ain't no danger to no one yer Lordy Looship... no one sells for me!"
-"Yer Holinessem, please let me hunt down that Fat Jew Goodman! He owes me wampum!"
-"Praise be the Lady Justishems... you better free me 'fore I go all OJ up in this here piece!"
-"Lemme go and I'll give up the goods on Feinstein!"
-"Now yer Whiteness, I used dat knife on Billy Firehawk! Stabbed him right in the fat gut! He din't even notice! I figgered the knife was a gimmick!"
-"THE BITCH T'AINT A NATURAL RED-HEAD!! IT'S ALL A BED OF LIES!!"
-"Only t'ing I be guilty of is lovin' the white girl too much, yo chiefness!"
-"My Lawyer be possessed by da spirit o' Johnny Cochran! Let the Slyck go or this shit is gonna go DIZZZZOWN, yo"
-"First Tupac and now Slyck? Don' play the racial card, yo fairness"
-"I work Inderpendpants rasslin', Judge... ain't I payin' fer muh sins already?"
And with that, the silver tongue devil was sent home!
All I gots to say is A: Thank God my address is unlisted and B: JD Michaels better grow eyes in the back of his head!
EARTHQUAKE AT THE HEAVEN'S GATE
Terrible, trite, childish title...
We're all heartbroken that John "Earthquake" Tenta has died... well, I'm not HEARTBROKEN over it... I've got other things to be bummed aboot.
Look, assholes... one thing we ALL have in common... each and every one of us... is that we are ALL going to end up in either a box or a vase... no one is exempt... not a one... we're all heading there...
And the guy died of cancer for crying out loud... he's at PEACE... no more fighting... he's COOL... okay?
And... he seemed like an alright guy... so let's entertain the notion that he made it into Heaven...
And let's ponder for a minute... exactly what Tenta heard or said during his first day there
And let's ignore the fact that I did this exact same bit when Eddie Guerrero died
And let's REALLY IGNORE the fact that I just did this EXACT SAME BIT with Slyk Wagner just ONE SEGMENT AGO...
-"Hang on.... why am I still fat?"
-"HOLD ON... why am I still bald? I mean, COME ON, GOD!!"
-"Where's Owen? Oh... really? How come? No kidding? With Latino girls? HOW OLD?"
-"All the angels look like my MOM? WTF??"
-"Hold the phone... can't you... you know... look, I spent 44 years on Earth with a 3 inch penis.. can't ya just... gimme just... oh fuck you then!"
-"Anyone got a beard trimmer?"
-"Candido made it in? Must of been a clerical error, right?"
-"Hey, Vince Sr... have you been watching what your fruitcake son has been up to?"
-"Wait a second... why am I under water? DON'T YOU ASSHOLES LISTEN TO US DOWN THERE??? I AM NOT A FUCKING FISH!!"
-"I haven't seen a single Jew here... man, they REALLY backed the wrong horse, didn't they."
-"Yeah I'm Canadian... so wha... GET AWAY FROM ME, DON'T THROW ME OUT, I CONVERTED!! I CONVERTED!!! GOD BLESS AMERICA, EH! HOCKEY SUCKS!!"
-"Whaddaya mean Bin Laden is doing the right thing? Holy crap!"
-"I'm still hungry."
-"TRAYLOR!! You made it! Hey, Jimmy Hart is STILL walking funny after we shoved your nightstick up his ass! That was a great rib!"
-"What the hell is Dave Meltzer doing up here?"
-"Randy Orton did WHAT??"
-"Great, even in Heaven Miss Elizabeth won't sleep with me"
-"How the HELL did Dusty outlive me?"
-"Of course I belong here... back on Earth I was reduced to kissing up to some asshole named R.D. Reynolds. I served my fuckin' time!"
-"Even up here all the Von Erichs are douchebags."
-"So which WWE Diva has Herpes? No way... HER? But she's Canadian!"
R.I.P You big fish-man! You earned the rest!
(oy... the same goddam jokes... all I do)
LADIES LOVE COOL HY
This has nothing to do with anything, and you’ll probably get bored mid-way… but too frickin’ bad… WHOSE column is this again? That’s right!
Having chick readers is unusual enough, but when one of them is a beautiful, proud black angel from New York, well, ol’ Cool Hy has to do some investigating... plus it's time to get back on the horse:
Hyatte1com: … and then sticking my big toe in there was easy!
Stormi: What a charmer
Hyatte1com: Say, what’s your name anyway? Can I guess?
Hyatte1com: Let’s see…Shaniqua?
Hyatte1com: Wait a second… SHANANAY!!
Hyatte1com: Nosmo King?
Stormi: no, no, no, no, and God no
Hyatte1com: Lemme think here…
Stormi: Keep this up and I’ll start calling you Mike Johnson
Hyatte1com: WAIT!! Don’t!… okay, seriously… Melody!
Eventually, I got her name… and blocked. Another rejection... I'm collecting them ALL...
Maybe I should go gay... someone get me Feinstein's e-mail address...
THE WORLD ACCORDING TO FLEA
Whenever we talk, I can always count on Flea to give his opinions on just about anything.
So, I decided to grab a pen and paper and start jotting down his thoughts. Everyone likes Flea.
The following is 100% true... more or less:
WHERE DOES FLEA STAND ON...
A fucking dumb cock who needs to fall down his own stairs.
Flea: Always looking our for his friends.
A FUN FACT THAT WILL MAKE YOU LOOK SMARTER
*If she comes back to you on her own, then it's meant to be*
And just like that, you're smarter than you were three seconds ago
Hyatte LIVES to inform.
Awwwww, how... how sweet of me... and thoughtful... and inspirational... MIGHT be an exact FACT... but still.
Awwwwww.... I've seemed to have misplaced my nads.
KEVIN NASH IS BETTER THAN YOU
Since day one, Kevin Nash has been shat on by Internet marks everywhere. Well.... enough is ENOUGH!
This isn't going to change a damn thing, but I'm doing it anyway. Someone has to point out the obvious, SOMEONE has to defend the big guy, SOMEONE has to show the WRESTLING WORLD that Kevin Nash... maybe the greediest, laziest, sneakiest wrestler who ever lived, deserves a HEARTY round of applause... not for thumbing his nose at those who actually WORKED in the ring, but for doing it and getting rich at the same time. He IS the American dream... all 7 feet of him.
But is he better than YOU, John Q. Workrate? Bet'cha ASS he is... Why?
Kevin Nash Is Better Than You Because...
He would only put over Jack Bauer if someone paid him enough money
THIS HAS BEEN "KEVIN NASH IS BETTER THAN YOU" STARRING KEVIN NASH, WRITTEN, DIRECTED, AND PRODUCED BY CHRIS HYATTE. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
And that is the ONLY time I reference this ridiculous "Jack Bauer" craze that's going around. IT'S KIEFER SUTHERLAND, PEOPLE, JUST A FUCKING B-MOVIE STAR WHO LUCKED INTO A CULT TV SERIES... STOP MARKING OUT FOR HIM!!
THE IMPACT MOP-UP
Surrrre... oh wait.. I didn't watch it Thursday and I actually had a date on Saturday... a nice date too... it happens
No, I don't record this bullshit... and when I'm bored I do NOT watch old tapes... sorry, I am not saying this to put on a cool act... I... well, I see these message boards sometimes and EVERYTHING is about watching wrestling... if not on TV then on tape or DVD... it's like... Jesus H, people... watch a fucking baseball game for once...
THE RISE AND FALL OF THE IWC
Eventually, I'm going to say something about this ECW Press and their nasty habit of publishing STUPID FUCKING BOOKS THAT NO ONE WANTS TO READ...
I mean... seriously... James Guttman's "World Wrestling Insanity", which offered NOTHING in terms of insight or information or talent (who IS that fuckhead and why is he alive?) sold less than 600 copies in its first two weeks...
600 copies... this means YOU can walk into a mall, stand on top of the escalator, and read something and you'll reach more people than Guttman did.
600 COPIES.... you can go to a kareoke bar on a Monday night, and read a chapter from his book while the machine plays "Crazy" by Patsy Cline and reach MORE people than Guttman did.
600 COPIES... this means you can spend an afternoon begging for change at Grand Central Station... and AFTERNOON... and make more money than ECW Press did with this book.
And now, Bob Ryder is writing a book... about his adventures on the Internet and how he turned it into an office job at TNA... with a few years at the crumbling WCW on the side...
And since Dave Scherer is such a godless cocksucker... you KNOW he's already negotiating (which means, offering to do it for free) a book deal of his own... "How I lost weight and became an Internet Horseman... but really it's all about how I lost weight!" by Dave Scherer...
I'll beg ECW Press to stop this bullshit some other time... but this is a good time to tack on a very special bonus segment before I send you all off to whatever it is you do when I'm not around...
I originally published (HA... published my ass, try posted) this in 2001... and you know something, other than the Bob Ryder/Dave Scherer split and the creation of the PW Insider bullshit site... this can very well have been written yesterday...
You want to know where Bob Ryder gets his nerve to have a book published? You want to know EXACTLY what a ridiculous history this Internet Wrestling thing is? Read this:
Truthfully, I don't watch much wrestling at all anymore
-"known" Internet Wrestling Personality
The Worldwide Dirtsheet
This column is about Professional Wrestling in every aspect... including it's involvement with the Internet or, and maybe more appropriately, the Internet's involvement with Professional Wrestling. The Internet plays a role in the development and evolution in Wrestling, or that is to say, it did. Then things grew complicated, dumb people thought they would get rich, and everyone became an expert.
For a while, the Internet was an amazing forum for fans. It delivered inside news on locker room politics, contract negotiations, marketing strategies, and House show war stories. It shone the light into the darkness that wrestling had successfully kept itself shrouded inside for the last hundred years and offered all the information to the public for free. There would be no more paying three bucks and change for each minute you call a hotline. No more of these underground dirt sheets that you have no idea how to get in contact with, much less subscribe to. It seemed that each day there was something new to read about, some new revelation about who really hated who and what was really going on behind-the-scenes. I think it's safe to say that without the Internet, no one except those in attendance would have known about that one night in Madison Square Garden where Shawn Michaels, Diesal, Razor Ramon, The 1-2-3 Kid, and Hunter Hearst Helmsley ended the show with an in-ring group hug. No one would have known that Hunter spent a year in the WWF dog house getting his face rubbed in the mud by Henry Godwin because of his participation and the WWF certainly wouldn't have eventually used the moment as a plot device to help push Helmsley a couple of years later. It's because of the Internet insiders, those who brought the business out into the open just a little, who forced this to happen. They forced the WWF to admit that yes, there was something called a "Clique" and yes, it affected what you saw in the ring. That is a huge thing for the WWF to admit. Allowing real life to peek out in the storylines was unheard of before this moment. Even WCW, recruiting Scott Hall and Kevin Nash to initiate a "war", while it introduced real life aspects into the ring, it really didn't break kayfabe.
Even the very word, kayfabe was introduced into the Mark's vocabulary through the Internet. In fact, who the hell outside the business knew what a "Mark" was before the Internet?
To that end, the Internet became an incredible tool to help increase the appreciation of the business to the fans. On the flip side, it also helped the self-esteem of the fans. Being a Mark for wrestling has never been an ultra-cool part of one's personal resume, but to be a Mark who is aware of what's going on behind the scenes, and is more than happy to share his "expert" knowledge to those who don't surf throught wrestling sites, well that makes being a fan a little easier to admit. Doesn't it?
Unfortunately, as wrestling grew in popularity, so did Internet Wrestling. When that happened, it got ugly.
The Internet Mafia
In the beginning, the entire Internet Wrestling scene was based on the "Sheep and Shepard" concept. A Shepard would command, and the Sheep would follow. The Sheep would then gossip among themselves, trade friendly barbs, ask questions, play with each other. Sometimes they would fight, other times they would agree... but none of them took the business, nor themselves too seriously.
Welcome to RSPW in the mid-90's.
The Internet in the mid 90's was delightfully simple. What sired all these web sites with all these self-important "journalists" was nothing but a mere message board. The granddaddy of all boards stemmed from "Rec. Sports-Pro Wrestling", a board from the Usenet group which became geround zero for all Internet Wrestling activity.. A board that became a haven for wrestling fans all over the world (but mostly Canada and America) to find kindred spirits who wanted to talk about the happenings within pro wrestling freely and without shame. For their news, these Sheep depended on Dirt Sheet Newsletters and Hotlines provided by "Reality Breaking" Wrestling Journalists like Wade Keller, Dave Scherer, and Dave Meltzer. These newsletters did not try to supplement the storylines with gimmicked columns and reports like the national "Apter Magazine" publications did, but they presented wrestling in stark black and white forms, refusing to blur the line between real and gimmick at all. These newsletters told the real stories, answered the questions we've always had, but had no idea how to get answered, and made the reader feel like an expert. One poster would would report on what the newsletters had to say and the sheep would spend hours, days discussing it. Before too long, if ever, it became cooler to talk about each other than to talk about wrestling itself. It was here, almost as soon as the Internet Wrestling scene has begun, did these sheep stop being fans of wrestling, and started being marks for themselves. Too afraid to be positive about the business and be labeled a "mark", so instead they became negative about the business in hopes to be labeled "an expert".
Eventually, a few posters decided to start their own sites. See, posting messages was great and all, but they wanted a forum to really wax poetic with their allmighty expert opinions. The Community had splintered into sub-communities and certain Sheep started to think that maybe they were more than just blind followers, they thought they were Shepards too. Scott Keith, Mike Samuda, John Petrie, Rick Scaia, Chris Zimmerman.... to name a few, these kids formed their own invidual web pages. Some complex news and opinion wrap-ups, others just a simple home for their recap archives. From a simple newsgroup message board sprung web sites, each with their own distinct mark made so by the personal touches of those who wanted to be something more than just a sheep drooling over what the newletter gave to them. They wanted to be "Internet Web Personalities". They wanted to be experts
As a little time went on, the web sites increased. Along with Samuda's MiCasa, which became the chief home of Newsletter and Hotline recaps, sites like The Bagpipe Report became just as talked about as the newsletters themselves. The IWP's grew cockier and cockier, feeling that the rising popularity of Internet Wrestling, coinciding with the rising populairty of Wrestling itself, were because of them. Their opinions brought people to the site. Their "expertise" kept them coming back.
Then, more web sites began popping up. Web masters who had no history with RSPW started to appear. Al Isaacs has swiftly turned Scoops, which was nothing but a simple news update and a daily opinion piece into an incredibly popular site whose fans proudly held up signs in it's name at wrestling shows. Al was a strange one to the IWP's. A simple man who had no problems showing his love for the sport, and reported the news as a fan... and not as an expert. The news, a daily blend of on-air recaps and inside news, was easily digested by the readers, who felt a bit lost when they read the inside jokes and "only-my-friends-will-get-this" interplay that the IWPs were all about. They were speaking another language, and didn't even try to explain to everyone else what it was. These IWP's began to resent the popularity of Scoops, and were the first to loudly point out and giggle over the snafus and incorrect reports that Al sometimes made.
From resentment came competition. Bob Ryder, overseer of all thing Wrestling on the Prodigy Internet service, saw how successful the Internet was doing and formed his own website called 1wrestling, bringing aboard noted Newsletter Journalist Dave Scherer with him. Slightly overestimating the power of being an Insider, Bob initially tried to charge readers to come in and read what's happening. That failed miserably. So, he opened it up for free and sold banner space to as many advertisers as he could. Scoops, meanwhile, stayed reasonably ad free and continued to grow, much to the misery of other IWPs who saw Al as an intruder on their playground. Given the very nature of the wrestling business itself, people at war with other people, and with the RSPW style of flaming everyone who has an opinion (a style that still rages on today), it didn't take long before Scoops became the target of most of the barbs from IWPs. Even Ryder and Scherer took a gleeful stab at Isaacs and insinuated that his site was far inferior to their product. With the advent of Scoops, the Internet became something other than just a forum for gossip. People with their own sites started to see Scoops as the reason why they aren't getting hundreds of thousands of people flocking to their site, checking out their ad banners, listening to their expertise, getting midnight phone calls from inside sources with exclusive news that no one, not even the Dirt Sheets, had. The Internet stopped being fun, and it started being a business.
Unfortunately, none of these IWPs had any idea how to start turning a profit strictly off their Internet site.
Here's my soul, pay me later
Wrestling took off during the end of the 90's, and businesses took notice. Internet Wrestling took off with Wrestling, and the Business took notice. All three companies, and just about every Indy fed, hastily created their own web sites to try and control what the net readers are given. Wrestlers controlled the rumors about them with their own personal; pages, sometimes sponsored by another entity and sometimes made entirely on their own. On TV, Vince Russo saw all the signs in the arena and convinced Vince McMahon to loosen his grip on kayfabe just a bit so he can lure fans in with titulating inside drama played out on air. Do you really think the WWF would have allowed DX to walk onto WCW headquearters so "Sean Waltman" can ask Eric Bischoff why he fired him were it not for the Internet? Russo saw the Internet as the future, and wrote his wrestling shows in order to cater to it. The IWPs were in heaven.
Meanwhile, Internet Wrestling was evolving. With so many new web sites and so little news to discuss on any given day, web masters began turning to strong personalities to bring in readers. Opinion pieces became just as necessary as the subject itself. This is where I came onto the scene, a strong minded force who used humor and attitude to get my point across. Writing for Al Isaacs, I let it be known that Scoops will no longer just lie there and take the abuse from other IWPs. I made fun of all of them, laughed at all of them, accused them of being pedofiles, incest junkies, virgins, homosexuals, and all around geeks. Scoops still grew wildly, as did the free for all 1wrestling. Some of the IWPs, notably those who "grew up" on the RSPW boards, banded together to form one power site. Scaia and Samuda formed Wrestlemaniacs and brought along friends like Scott Keith and Chris Zimmerman as contributers. They were tired of Scoops taking what little thunder was available from them, so they united.
At this time, Dave Meltzer opened the Observer.com and Wade Keller opened the Torch web site. The Shepards saw what a mess the flocks were making, and took a more direct approach to re-setting things straight.
With things so popular, and even the most unknown site pulling in a half decent audience, people who were paid to make money out of nothing swept in and dangled promises in front of the bigger sites. "For a small fee now, I will buy your site and turn it into a huge money making opertauion that will have you rolling in hundred dollar bills before you reach 30!" All they asked for in return, and this was such a paltry little item, was total control over their site, and all the content within. Oh, don't worry, you're not getting a lot of money for it now, but once we start getting the suckers to click onto our jazzy ad banners.... you will be driving Beemers, sipping Cristal, and hanging with Puffy within a year! With lightening white smiles and dollar signs cha-chinging in their eyes, these salesmen suckered the IWPs right into signing away everything they've ever done. It was an easy sell. Fish in a bucket easy. These experts, dumb enough to believe their own self generated hype, thought they were in a no-lose situation and implicitly trusted the salesmen with their snake oil. I strongly doubt anyone even bothered to ask just how they would make their sites profitable.
Or if they did, I doubt they bothered to ask what would happen if they couldn't.
I know Al Isaacs didn't.
Which brings us to today. Internet wrestling, just like the business itself, is in a downward slide. Scoops is dead, killed remorselessly by the very company that Al sold it to. Absorbed into another site where it quickly evaporated. Wrestlemaniacs joined the CBS Sportsline family and Rick Scaia now is a puppet on the site he built from the ground up. He even does it with a smile. Mike Samuda left the Net to begin a career as a lawyer, but I'm sure if you ever saw him he'd tell you how disgusted he was with the whole ordeal. One IWPs started a site on his own with a partner, and tried to make it profitable with his own barely-out-of high-school expertise. He ended up leaving in disgrace and left a pile of Rantsylvania bills to his partner to sift through. Meanwhile, all the web sites now gain their news from "The Big Three", The Torch, The Observer, and 1Wrestling. It should be noted that out of these three, the Torch and the Observer only use the web page primarily to sell their own newsletters, where the real money comes in. 1Wrestling, meanwhile, is swimming in pop-up ads and annoying banners, making the site impossible to enjoy. Every other site is just nothing but IWPs who are too afraid to be positive about the business and be labeled a "mark", so instead be negative about the business and be labeled "an expert"
Did we come full circle? Or did we even really leave ground zero?
So, with everyone reporting the same news, it is up to the opinion makers to make sites popular. With all these sites and so little to report on, Internet Wrestling readers must depend on being entetrtained and intrigued by the people doing the writing to keep them coming back. In order for Internet Wrestling to survive, it needs a few good IWPs with brains and sharp opinions; opinions that will induce thought and smart debate. And from what I've seen these last few weeks, there aren't too many.
Case in point, one of the most discussed inside news item is the "WWF Glass Ceiling" and the influence that Triple H has in keeping middle card guys from ascending into the main event. Culled by the Torch, it has quickly spread from juicy tidbit, to possible rumor, to flat out fact. Now, IWPs, column writers, and message board posters are demanding the head of HHH on a silver platter for using his selfish, insecure power over Vince McMahon to keep studs like Chris Benoit, Kurt Angle, and Chris Jericho down while old farts like the Undertaker appear in main event after main event. No more rumor. No more possibilities. Everyone is an expert and the experts say it is a fact! Hell, now IWPs are fighting with WWF.com writers over this matter, claiming that the WWF writer is a mere pawn trying to keep the truth at bay!
Now, HHH may be keeping guys down. There may very well be a glass ceiling. All of this may be true. That's not what makes me sad.
It's that no one, not one single IWP, board poster, or columnist has looked at this story from any other angle other than what the Torch presented.
Vince McMahon, who has been in the business since he was a child, who has taken wrestling out of the barnyards and into major arenas and into public acceptance. Vince McMahon, who made himself a billionaire from the business of sports entertainment. Vince McMahon, who knows more about wrestling than anyone else on the planet, is allowing Hunter Hearse Helmsley to run the WWF and keep the same four main eventers on top while keeping everyone else away. Like a doddering old fool who routinely forgets how to chew his food, Vince has handed over the power to HHH and let him run wild with it? Is that what everyone is saying?
HHH has done what Hulk Hogan, Pat Patterson, Bret Hart, Shawn Michaels, Steve Austin, Jim Ross, Gerald Briscoe, Bill Watts, Vince Russo, his own wife, his own children could not do... he has taken the decision making out of Vince McMahon's hands and has discreeetly made himself the most powerful man in wrestling? And Vince has allowed this to happen? Is that what you are telling me?
Yes, Vince has the XFL and other business ventures to deal with. Yes, he certainly doesn't have a more hands on approach to the WWF as he once did. Yes, he has placed a level of trust in people like HHH, his own daughter and Jim Ross to run things while he gets a football league off the ground. Yes, there is certainly enough outsider evidence to support the theory that HHH could possibly have a glass ceiling up.
You can make a good case on either side. It would make for some spirited debate and thought provoking commentary. Instead of focusing on the negative and trying to be "an expert", look at it from all sides and encourage thought.
Too bad no one has done it yet. Too bad everyone just goes by what the Shepard tells us to go by and accept it as law without question.
Too bad that deep down, we're still all sheep.
Incidentally, bitching about the sport we're supposed to love is the number one sign that you still are an Internet Sheep. Want to know number two?
Bitching about other Sheep.
And that's the whole she-bang up to 2001... and NOTHING HAS FUCKING CHANGED... 5 YEARS LATER... NOTHING....NADA!!
Me? Why am I still around? Right now, just to see what I can do on a site with a very specific audience... I had other goals but those seem to have faded off... I gave it a good try, tho'. Believe you me, I gave 'er a RUN.
ECW Press should hire the Italians to blow up their headquarters and collect the Insurance and go out and invest in bathhouses... they'll STILL get Ryder as a client!
Anyway... let's wrap things up...
MORE SIGNS, SIGNS, EVERYWHERE IS SIGNS, MESSIN' UP THE SCENERY, BREAKING MY MIND
Well, I DID promise...
Last week I suggested some signs YOU could make and show for the three WWE brands... and of course, they went ignored...
Well THIS WEEK... I thought I'd finish this up, and fill some nice space, by suggesting some signs you can bring to TNA shows AND to ROH shows... does ROH people even bring signs? Even though they probably can't be seen due to ROH's extremely pissy lighting? I don't know... try it anyway... if you get lucky, you'll piss someone off and have a nice little WRESTLING MATCH BRAWL to tell your kids about...
So, if you have the nerve... the BALLS... see about bringing the following signs to the following shows...
-GO BACK TO SMACKDOWN
-HIRE ORLANDO JONES: HE FITS IN
-BRING BACK RUSSO
-BRING BACK S.E.X
-AJ HATES FAGS
-JOE'S GONNA EAT YOU
-FIRE DUTCH MANTELL
-TENAY IS DRUNK
-DON WEST FONDLES GIRL SCOUTS
-WHICH ONE IS THE TRUTH NOW?
-MONTY POUNCED ALL OVER MY GIRLFRIEND LAST NIGHT
-THERE ARE NO BLACK PEOPLE IN THIS AUDIENCE
-DIXIE LIKES BUTTSEX
-JARRETT FEARS LAWLER
-HEY SIMON, I FUCKED DAWN MARIE
-FALLEN ANGEL = FALLEN CAREER
-SONJAY DUTT SOLD ME A SLURPEE LAST NIGHT
-TNA: THE NEW HOME OF VANILLA MIDGETS
-WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE?
-I MISS FEINSTEIN
-WHY AREN'T YOU ON TV?
-WHERE'S THE CENA T-SHIRT BOOTH?
-HEY, I WENT TO THIS HIGH SCHOOL
-ROH: WHERE MOST DARK MATCH JOBBERS GET THEIR START
-PUNK GOT MARIA, WHO GETS TRISH?
-STRAIGHT TO DVD WRESTLING RATS ARE STANKY
-GABE'S WIFE SWALLOWS
-PERVERTED JUSTICE RULES
-I SHAGGED HOMICIDE'S SISTER
-NO ONE WILL EVER SEE THIS SIGN.
-CORNETTE GETS PAID IN BANANAS
Hmmm... okay then.
Next week... I don't know what I'm doing... yeah, I may take a week off... I know I promised not to but... well... it's the 4th... holiday... no one's around...
This is Hyatte