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Vincent K. McMahon

Perry Saturn

Yikes. This guy is still wrestling.

Slobberknockers abound
Ringside Shadows #119: Just Another Trade

Following a pretty good PPV, Nitro proved it would take more than one big night to put it back into consistant competition, while Raw pulled out what's sure to go down as the most entertaining first hour in years. As Russo and company played out a scene we've been through dozens of times in the past (a ticker tape celebration? with falling leaflets and balloons? c'mon, why didn't they just break out the spray paint and write 'nWo' on the heavenly paper? and how many times have we seen that tired 'security guard' bullshit?) and threw out childish jabs at his former co-workers, Raw let it all hang out.. building a program on the backs of former WCW employees. Though things look a lot better in a wide lens, WCW's problems are far from overcome as the same old act is being played out once more with a couple new faces and a few missing players. Be it cosmetic changes like the new "Turner tron" or personnell changes such as Benoit, Jarrett and Jericho, today's Nitro and Raw are trading more than just words..

"Leading by Example"

Hey, this one comes straight from the source.. while Perry Saturn has led the revolution to "lead by example" through more than a few harsh words on the invisible gossip mill of the internet, Hogan never seemed to pay any mind to the situation as a whole... until last night. Sure, Perry's prodding was without a doubt the instigator of this feud with Kidman (which I'm certain Hogan had no intention of following through with, before it became an issue of saving face), but Hogan held the moral ground (!) by never really ackowledging the verbal abuse and basically turning the other cheek. Big Hulk never proclaimed himself a leader, whether he was given the task or not.. and I could almost see his side of the story. Last night, though, he opened the floodgates. Hulk Hogan claimed up to a duty he's been neglecting for nearly a decade and a half.. he announced himself as the leader, behind which others were to follow. As of now, he isn't giving us much of a legacy to follow behind. In "leading by example," Hogan has shown us the proper way for an aging superstar to act is to;

a) sell only for your friends, and never for anyone smaller, younger or less credible than you

b) dispel the obvious signs of your aging, bullheadedly claiming you're still good enough to headline every show in the promotion

c) always blade for the boss -and-

d) hold onto the limelight as long as your broken body will allow

For Hogan to assume such a position at this turning point shows one of two things: poor planning on WCW's part or an ego beyond any previous bounds on Hogan's end. Where Hulk takes the time to tell us he'll be leading and we should watch ("hey! hey! look at me! over here! me!"), stars like Sting and DDP are out there, quietly doing it the right way. (ooh, that sounded bad.. Sting and DDP are over in the corner, quietly 'doing it'.) Sting's taking the time to do his feud with Vampiro justice, and all parties involved are benefitting, as Sting's career gains legs, Vampiro's grows wings to help his continued push and the fans are along all the way with an enjoyable feud. DDP's over in the other end of the woods, putting over Mike Awesome and Jeff Jarrett like crazy and giving Kanyon a chance to shine as a face. Methinks the Hulk dost talk too much..

The Continuing Adventures of the McMahons on Basic Cable..

When it comes to Linda McMahon, enough is... apparantly... never enough. Leave it to everybody's favorite CEO to spoil the party, proving once again that rumors of her dispatch are greatly exaggerated. The world's most charismatic individual put forward her motherly side, through her on screen cinematics with Shane and her lip-trembling reaction to what she'd done to Stephanie. She damn nearly took one for the team, though she's much like Kidman... you'll never powerbomb her, as she's likely to do that 'flippy-into face buster' reversal.

Seriously, the McMahon saga has long since grown tired and overdrawn. Not even Vince's "big" return less than a month ago gave the first family enough gas to keep chugging for much longer. Stephanie's slowly become less and less interesting, Shane's wild bumps are likely not gonna cut it any more, and Linda never belonged before the camera to begin with. If Vince really knew how to give the fans what they wanted, he'd quit while the gettings are still good. I thought he "got it" last year, losing the match that proclaimed he'd never return to television again.. but it wasn't meant to be. As is, the McMahons as a unit have about six months left before fans go from mild recognition to ignorance to danger levels (and we're talking Bossman-degree danger levels here). Set the ego aside and do what's right for the company, Vince. Step aside once and for all, and bring your family along for the ride.. I guarantee the lined pockets will more than soothe your bruised ego.

Other Mentionables

I've a couple random comments left behind, and seeing as how they don't fit under either of the other headings, it's best to clean them off my plate here.

Leading off, I've got nothing but praise for the way things have been handled with Tazz since winning the ECW title, but they haven't had much of a chance to mess it up yet. If the rumors of another ECW invasion come true, this could be one for the record books. The last ECW invasion pretty much led to the new WWF "attitude," not to mention some memorable moments and a couple worthwhile matches.. who's to say where it'll end up this time? So long as this issue's overly-mentioned worker, Perry Saturn, is kept in the mix as a top contender, it promises to succeed. JR shilled like none hath shilled before regarding Tazz's title situation, and I can only hope it's a precursor of things to come.

Just as things looked to be lined up perfectly for Essa Rios, they're knocked back down again.. or are they? A team with Eddy could've been more than enough to float Essa's linguistic difficulties past the picky WWF crowds. Long enough for them to catch a glimpse at his spectacular ringwork, that is. If the Hardyz can get over without saying a word, Rios would have no problem whatsoever.. especially with the proven power of Guerrero behind him. Alas; it wasn't meant to be, unless the WWF pulls the ace from their sleeve and pushes a feud between the two. Lita's presence alone would cancel out the only negative in Guerrero's package.. the beastial Chyna. Let's keep our fingers crossed.

Kudos to Mike Awesome for taking a vicious powerbomb through the table. Though Nash tried to wuss his way through it again, Awesome's landing more than made up for it... a neck just isn't meant to bend that way.

Who's to say Raw can't have an equally interesting intro centered around a match, rather than an interview? This week's Y2J / HHH fiasco served up some of the best television we've seen all year, despite the ending nobody wanted to see. The main event may have been asking a bit much (I'd have saved it for next week's show), but damned if it wasn't enough to get me off my seat and into the air. Great television, and a perfect way to follow up Taka's near win under the same circumstances last week.

How's this..? Shane apparantly turned on HHH earlier in the night, protecting his blood, yet he was inexplicably by his side for the main event. Maybe I missed something.

The battle of the 'Perfects' was actually an angle that I was intrigued with, one that I think could definately work. However, instead of allowing the angle time to develop and properly plan the upcoming twists and turns, WCW pushed it ahead for use on its big Nitro last week. Stasiak, obviously unprepared for the sudden push, has pretty much blown the image in the past 2 weeks while Hennig tries valiantly to make it all work. Just another reason why WCW's still light years behind their competition... both of them.

But Nitro wasn't all bad, and it wrapped up on a really good note (no, I don't mean that Hogan / Hart bullshit. I mean the real draw, the main event.) Steiner was one face I didn't see coming, and the two put forward a strong event on their own.. one that elevated both parties involved and introduced Booker T to the big push we've all been anticipating for what seems like a lifetime. Scotty's obviously in a steady decline, as his body catches up with years of constant abuse in the ring, but his match with the new world champion last night proved he can still go when the time is right. Now for that big feud with Booker, as I called for in our Preview a couple days back.

And that wraps up a brief version of the Tuesday Review for this week. With things heating up on campus, in preparation for finals, I'll be out of action for the next couple weeks.. but not to worry, I'll still be around with my Tuesday Review(s) and PPV previews with John. Speaking of which, the other half of the World's most llamarific PPV Preview team is tossing out a well thought out WWF Talent Evaluation as we speak. It's nicely done and though I don't agree with all his points, it's an entertaining read at the very least. All this, plus he's much better planned than I.. his 4 segments will be up within the course of 2 days (!), as opposed to the 2 months it seemed to take me with my WCW talent eval.

As for me, it's off to the art building.. I've got so much to do I don't even know where to begin (actually, the apparant launching pad for finals preparation is writing a long winded conclusion, because that's what I'm doing right now). Take it easy,

until next time, i remain


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