Over the last few weeks, many people inside and outside of the business are talking about the latest 1Wrestling.com columnist, the man who claims to be a WWE worker who goes under the pseudonym of “Willie the Worker”. Over the past several weeks, Willie has written columns that seemingly, from the worker’s perspective, are critical of the company for the direction has taken. While Willie may not in fact, be who he says he is, his points hold true as it comes to the opinions of most who work for the company and historically such a thing is relatively unprecedented, but many would suggest – inevitable given the state of the industry under the monopoly that is WWE. By stepping forward, whoever this person is would be committing career suicide by coming out and even perhaps facing legal and financial repercussions as well. If wrestlers are so disaffected and disenfranchised that they will risk it… something is wrong – something is terribly wrong.
“Never did I think I’d sit down and pen a column for 1Wrestling about my frustrations and concerns regarding the current WWE product,” began the mysterious one. “However, it’s not like I have an open forum to do so. I can’t exactly can go and post a column on their website talking about all the things they are doing wrong right now. There have been several times when I have wanted to contact Dave Scherer and ask him to let me write an anonymous column in the past, but I never got the balls to do it. But after sitting in the locker room this past Sunday at WrestleMania watching it on the monitors, when I should have been somehow factored into the event, watching my peers perform in front of such an amazing live crowd; I’ve decided it’s time that I spoke my mind.” He went on to make good points and voice genuine concern… but not only that, he got people talking.
However, the novelty act seemed to wear off. Instead of being a wrestler who was angry at the political situation in the company, suddenly developed into a whiny voice, or if not, just another columnist expressing random musings each week. Even one of his co-columnists said something almost exactly like this: “Shut up and wrestle, and leave the writing to us.” While there is general concern about the product that the so-called wrestler expressed, his column one week even deviated into how rapper Eminem could save the company. While it is important to address the issues, the column he wrote became just a place for him to voice his own troubles and biased stance against Vince. This was more than a Lance Storm writing musings (both good and bad) weekly on his website. This was a worker who wasn’t getting pushed and probably shouldn’t be getting pushed, with nothing better to do than spew insults at Vince McMahon but remain anonymous and continue to collect a paycheck.
What a no-good, hypocritical, presumptuous jerk! So I deduce the same thing that did another writer at 1Wrestling.com, “Shut up and wrestle, and leave the writing to us.”
Short and concise, how about that? I also should note that since the columns have stopped being written and a few people seem to know who it is, the columns are no longer being posted on the 1W website. Take that for what you will.
Ranting about the ‘Net, Trips, and YOU by Sonia
Courtesy: The Amazon Wrestling Newsletter (send an email to me to subscribe) (Editors note: I just read this very interesting and true column by a friend and columnist as well that looks at HHH’s recent comments on WWE.com from the perspective of a fan.)
Recently, current RAW Heavyweight Champion, Triple H had many interesting things to say in an interview with WWE.com. In what I feel is one of the most telling comments in the interview, Trips said:
“This company can’t strap a rocket on somebody who is not ready for it, no matter what. But a talent can strap a rocket on himself whether the office is ready to push him or not, and get himself over. It doesn’t work the other way around.”
It’s important to see what the “top dog” on RAW has to say in regards to other talent. For a long time now, it’s been argued that Trips is one of the biggest problems on RAW because he refuses to put anyone else over. How does he respond to that criticism that he damn well knows is out there? By saying that it’s up to the wrestlers to worry about themselves, and put themselves over, whether the “Office” is ready to push them or not. Riiight, Trips. After all, that is how YOU got to where YOU are right now, isn’t it? You’re not a Heavyweight Champ because you were friends with the right people, or because you took advantage of someone “taking their ball and going home?” Oh no, you strapped a rocket on yourself and made it to the top because YOU were ready for it, and YOU wanted it. And the fact you’re just a wedding away from being an Honorary McMahon also has to play NO part in the influence you’re clearly wielding in production, right? All those years playing the character of blue blood Hunter Hearst Helmsley, being a lowly mid-carder (not even a top level, almost main event mid-carder) and wrestling in pig pens with Henry Godwinn were just for sh*ts and giggles, I bet! Give me a break, Trips. It is so easy for you to sit where you are, and send commandments down to the rest of the workers who are busting their butts to “earn a spot.” But it’s clear you’re delusional and playing the part of corporate puppet; what a shame after what the corporation did to punish you for things your friends did all those years ago.
Trips also said: “Frankly, I couldn’t care less about what fans on the Internet think.”
Really, Trips? So it doesn’t bother you that when I was at WM and you pinned Booker, some guy behind me shouted out, “What a surprise!”? I knew what he meant when he said it, I bet money he was a ‘Net fan, and you delivered EXACTLY what he & many of us expected, NOTHING MORE. That doesn’t bother you?!?! It bloody well should, mate!
Internet wrestling fans are SO often and quickly slammed for their attitudes and tendency to criticize. As a fan, it’s my right and privilege to analyze and criticize what I watch. If I didn’t, I’d be a mindless drone. But why is it that everyone who criticizes ME for criticizing wrestling doesn’t take into account the fact that I am STILL spending time watching the product, I am STILL spending money on tickets to any shows that come through town, and I am STILL spending time and money to go support all of the men and women who work so hard to entertain me? I’ve been a wrestling fan for almost 14 years! After all that investment, don’t I get to make a negative comment here and there? If I was somebody who started watching wrestling two weeks ago, has never been to a live show, never stood in line HOURS for just a 30 second meeting with a superstar, then I could see how everyone would be upset with me. But what the higher ups in wrestling better get through their thick skulls is that ‘Net fans, no matter how belligerent or ignorant or abrasive the vocal minority comes across, do indeed represent their CORE AUDIENCE!
Most of us ‘Net fans are the ones who’ve stuck with wrestling through the “dark days,” and continue to stick with it week after week; we’re hardcore. We’re dedicated, and despite our criticisms, we LOVE wrestling. If we didn’t, we wouldn’t CARE that it sucked! We would just sit quietly by and swallow it. When we criticize, we’re TRYING to suggest some things that we fans WANT to see; we’re trying to suggest what could be done to IMPROVE the product we’ve been so loyal to so business will be BETTER! Are we right all the time? Hell no! That doesn’t mean you should ignore us, or make us feel like s**t by dismissing us. Maybe if Trips cared just a teensy bit about us ‘Net fans, all the criticism he works so hard to ignore wouldn’t exist, and business might be ever-so-slightly better for WWE.
I’m a ‘Net fan, and I’m proud of it. I’m not exactly sure whether I’m part of the vocal minority, or the quiet majority. Sure, I have this column, but who really reads it? My guess is just fellow frustrated and dedicated fans. I don’t have any kind of real influence over anyone in power; my opinions have no real shot at reaching the eyes/ears of someone who might give a damn. Does that mean I’m going to shut up? No :o) Because this right here is part of the appeal of being a wrestling fan for me: being able to say what I think about this sport I love so much, and hoping to connect with a few of you reading enough for you to speak up and say, “Damn it, you’re right! And I agree with you!” A sense of closeness, community, and having a voice is one of the unique aspects of BEING a wrestling fan. The invention of the Internet has only enhanced that further.
*sigh* Bottom line, we’re not any worse than average wrestling fans ’cause we surf the ‘Net or speak our minds, Trips! Just because I look up to you doesn’t give you the right to look down your prominent proboscis at ME. I’m one of the millions who helps you make your living. Do you owe me? Yes, but just as much as I owe you.
Follow-up to a subject I wrote about a few weeks ago from an email I sent a few days ago: The blame for the injury situation lays in the hands of the company and the fans. The problem, regarding injuries, is the company’s hypocritical stance. They tell wrestlers “don’t do that, work a safer traditional style” and then give them paycuts when the don’t get over with the crowd. Jeff Hardy and Rob Van Dam, for example, are sloppy workers and they have gotten that way from years of reliance on highspot-based wrestling. That’s the biggest reason they get over, as well, in my opinion. Another example is Christopher Benoit. I’ve watched **** Benoit matches that have been jeered by the crowd because it was too mat-oriented. I feel his style, while praised in many circles (and rightfully so), is the biggest thing keeping him from being a draw in a main-event angle, which he has never done. Kurt Angle and Edge got over and now look where they are. Even Austin, who doesn’t take that many bumps, is at a point where his career as an active wrestler is nearly over. The company can only do so much before they reach a point where the say, “we can’t crack down because we are already losing money.” The blame should be shouldered by the sadistically sanguinary appetites of fans who would rather see Mick Foley do a 15-foot table bump, than something more realistic. I am sick of Vince McMahon being easy to blame for everything and I take particular issue with it at this time. If no end to this madness is reached, the blood is on our hands.
As soon as I get the time, which I hope will be very soon, I plan to touch on a subject that needs “touching on” and gets overlooked in columns (which I will also address) and that is the situation – plight would be a befitting word as well – that NWA:TNA is in, why they aren’t able to cultivate a following like ECW, able to draw, deadly booking mistakes, and a look at WWE outdoing TNA.
From Eddie’s mid-week “News and Analysis”:
If you missed it on the newsboard for some reason, Chris Jericho and Goldberg were talking about their WCW past backstage after RAW went off the air. Eventually, fists began to fly and the two were rolling on the ground. They were separated by WWE trainers before any of the shots they threw connected. Word has it that Goldberg made a comment about Jericho being small (something he’s done in the past; as a matter of fact, in WCW Goldberg refused to work with Jericho by saying Chris is too small of a wrestler), and Y2J went to confront Bill right after RAW, as he found out about the comment through the word of mouth. When Jericho went up to Goldberg, reports state that Goldberg grabbed Chris by the throat, and then Y2J slapped his arm away. Jericho then got in a face-lock type of move and the two were on the ground. I don’t like dealing with backstage rumors like that, since nobody besides the two really knows what happened. I’ll just say that Chris Jericho hasn’t exactly been a calm guy as of lately and WWE needs to give him a big win, and give it to him soon. As far as Goldberg goes, it’s interesting to see how this will be addressed by management. Stay tuned.
Nice to know Bill Goldberg is making a good impression already.
As I reported on the newsboard (http://www.thebalrogslair.com/boards1//NewsBoard/242.shtml), Rob Black’s porn-peddling company Extreme Associates has been investigated and raided by federal agents for illegal activity surrounding their pornographic business. The future of XPW is in question, and so is the future of one Rob Black. Their next scheduled show was cancelled.
On the subject of porn peddlers, I spoke several weeks ago on the “Scotty and Trevor Show” about the deleterious effects of WWE joining up with Girls Gone Wild and the first bad result was the actual first PPV itself (“Girls Gone Wild: Live From Spring Break” on iNDemand) which was horrible (from all accounts I’ve read and heard because I would never actually buy it) and prelim buyrates are low. Well if you haven’t been reading the news, the next step on a rocky road for GGW came not too long ago as creator Joe Francis, 28, who I’ve a deep and personal hatred towards, Mark Schmitz, 26, and several other rich administrators for GGW were arrested on “racketeering, prostitution, sexual exploitation and drug charges”. For Francis: add to that drug trafficking (Ecstacy, cocaine, and marijuana) and two employees of misdemeanor possession charges. Surprise, surprise. The details are worse. According to a police report obtained by the Smoking Gun and a subsequent news story on said subject, Francis had the chief role in the filming of underage girls topless and bathing together during spring break in Panama City. The article continues: “According to cops, the “Girls Gone Wild” team brought two of the girls to a motel where they were each paid $100 for undressing, showering together, and masturbating as they sat on the side of the bathtub. Investigators also allege that Francis offered two of the girls $50 ‘to touch or play with his penis,’ and that he and the ‘Girls Gone Wild’ photographer both knew that the girls were all underage. Along with arresting Francis and three of the multimillionaire’s associates, cops executed search warrants on Francis’s condominium and his corporate Lear jet. Those raids yielded a variety of electronic equipment, cocaine, and evidence of personal use of Ecstasy and pot. Most importantly, cops reported, they found explicit video of the underage girls who had told cops of their March 31 encounter with Francis & Co. In light of these allegations, it makes you wonder whether the previous ‘Girls Gone Wild’ productions (which have raked in nearly $100 million) may also contain kiddie porn.” Now while WWE and GGW may not work together again, Eric Bischoff will still be involved because he owns the rights.
Upcoming Leglock Book Reviews: Listen, You Pencil Neck Geeks by my personal favorite Dick Van Dyke Show guest star, “Classy” Freddy Blassie, ghostwritten by Keith Elliot Greenberg. (Summer)
That’ll do it for this weeks column. Like me, hate me, have an opinion on anything? Drop me your thoughts in an email, why don’t you… please be sure to include your name. Signing out, this is Dr. Trevor Hunnicutt for The Balrogs Lair est. MCMXCVI saying “noli voro canis.”
What do you think? Head over to The X-Forums to let your opinion be heard!