Greetings conversationalists all across the fruited plain, it is I your personal Harvester Of Sorrow the one and only Phantom Lord and this is The Rant Of The Week. Maybe it’s high time I renamed this column because it’s officially bi-weekly at this point. Hell it’s been a month since my last column so maybe I should just drop the “Of The Week” part all together. I’m really at a crossroads as a column writer because much like the newspaper industry I see the writing on the wall for the future.
Now I started this column probably a week and a half ago but things just kept getting in the way. So I’ve come to the decision that I should retire from column writing. In the span that I had been trying to work on this column more then a few big stories came and went and it just doesn’t work when you have to keep editing and editing to make sure your column is as up to date as possible. Now I’m not going to announce my retirement and then keep coming back like Terry Funk. I also have no intentions of pulling a page out of the playbooks of KISS, The Rolling Stones, and numerous other bands. When I’m done I will be done with writing. I might move on to the aforementioned web cam stuff. I dabbled in podcasts a few years ago so I know how to do those. Like I said it’s just easier from a content standpoint to use a medium to put it up quickly rather then let it sit around and be outdated.
You might be asking yourself “what exactly has gotten Phantom to throw in the towel”.
Oh it was a lot of things, but one thing in particular made me realize I just can’t keep doing this anymore.
It was after I saw this I came to the conclusion that if I continued to write columns I would be writing the same thing over and over and over and over AND OVER AND OVER AND BY GOD OVER.
I’m sure we’ve all heard this quote from Albert Einstein because I think it sums up TNA in a nutshell.
Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
All I can say is Fuck Hulk Hogan. Seriously, Fuck him. I feel sorry for him with his back problems because you know back problems do suck. He had to really be bad off to have a spinal fusion done. But just because I feel sorry for Hogan doesn’t mean that translates to me wanting to see his old crippled ass on television. For someone who was saying how he wanted to “give back to the business” last year and how he would take TNA to the next level all he has done is kept them in the same damn spot. Hogan is very much like Verne Gange in the late 70’s and early 80’s. It’s all about him. Matter of fact if Hogan could do a leg drop with out fear of his plastic hip shattering you know damn well he would be TNA World Champion right now.
Now you know how I feel while writing these things. I’ve been saying the same things over and over for years about TNA and it’s always the same thing about TNA in the end. They take one step forward and a billion steps back. I just can’t take it anymore so I am done. I’ll do a proper farewell and then that will be that.
But until then there’s some of that wrestling stuff still going on so maybe for my own sanity I should focus on it.
Last week on RAW we saw the payoff to the 2-21-11 videos when The Undertaker was able to finally free himself from being entombed in the Buried Alive set and he made his grand return. I’m glad he was able to get out of that thing finally because no one helped him the night of the match. Poor guy would have been stuck in there until the next time they pulled that thing out of storage.
Oh I’m only kidding. Old Man Inc was in the repair shop for the last couple of months for his semi-annual tune up. Unfortunately for all of us the WWE couldn’t convince Sting to get off his lazy ass and do something worthwhile. So we all are going to be blessed with The Undertaker vs. Triple H at Wrestlemania 27. It’s no secret that Triple H is thinking about retiring so he can continue his ascension to the throne of the corporate side of the WWE (he is the son Vince never had after all). Not to say the match it self wouldn’t be good, it’s just the story behind it that is supposed to get lowly fans like me interested will suck. If they wanted to build interest for this then Triple H should have been the one to attack The Undertaker during the buried alive match a few months ago. Then you could have let it stew as to why Triple H would have done such a thing. This entire match means if it does happen is Wade Barrett who deserves a moment to shine is now S.O.L.
Speaking of Triple H wow did he ever bury not only the entire WWE roster but also Sheamus in one fell swoop. He’s not getting ready to retire. Hell he’s just getting warmed up. If he’s anything like Ric Flair we’re going to be seeing him still doing this shit leading into Wrestlemania 47 sometime in the year 2031. I’ll talk more about the WWE wanting to push new stars a little later, but when one of the top guys does something like this it’s a little hard for those new guys to get over. It’s a shame because Sheamus is so awesome and he deserves far better then this. I hope he gets sent to Smackdown where he can be far away from the glass ceiling with Cena and Triple H.
Wrestlemania 27 is at the moment looking like a rather weak card. As it is Vince is banking on the intrigue around The Rock and John Cena finally coming face to face. The main events for the card are The Miz defending against John Cena and Edge taking on Royal Rumble winner Alberto Del Rio for the World Heavyweight Championship. The only one of those matches I am interested in is Del Rio vs. Edge because the time is now for Del Rio.
I have been a fan of Edge’s since he came to the WWF back in 1998. But man if this is him winding down his career it’s going to be with a real whimper and thud. Since Edge can’t be Rated R and everything he was during his peak as a real sleazy asshole he has been so boring to watch character wise. Wrestling wise he’s still fine in the ring even if he’s just phoning it in. But Edge as a bland face is just boring as hell. This feud with Ziggler has been pretty meh to say the least. The matches have been fine; it’s just the story part of it that has sucked.
Don’t get me wrong I love Vickie Guerrero. People could take lessons from her on how to get hate from a crowd. But I just never could take Dolph Ziggler seriously because of well the name Dolph Ziggler. I get he’s supposed to be I guess the new Mr. Perfect (at least that’s what I get from the theme song). But as usual the WWE gives me no real reason to care about any of this stuff. I think the thing that killed Ziggler was when he kept coming up short for the Intercontinental title in 2009. That was really his time to shine and in typical WWE fashion they just didn’t have the balls to pull the trigger on him. Apparently Vince McMahon is all about pushing new stars now…at least according to the latest investor conference call. Of course to the WWE pushing new stars means putting them in high profile matches only to dick them around and make them look like shit for a year.
It’s really an odd thing. Basically the WWE figures if they take a young star and treat them like crap for long enough, by the time they are ready to give them the push they will know if they are loyal and will stay with the company thus worth the push to begin with. Personally if Ziggler stayed after being a member of The Spirit Squad where Triple H & SHAWN Michaels decimated them each and every week then odds are he will stick around for the long haul.
Personally I can’t figure out WWE booking when it comes to new stars. They have a bunch of guys who are ready for the next level and they refuse to do anything with them. Take John Morrison for example. There is no reason why this guy shouldn’t be at least a two-time former world champion by now. With the way the belt is thrown around sometimes you think he would have gotten at least a token run by now. There was the story about Vince basically not seeing John Morrison as a man because he let Batista get away with banging Melina with out fighting him. I’m sure there are a lot of pro wrestlers who pussies in real life…but what that has to do with their abilities in the ring and to draw money I have no idea. We’ve at least gotten something good with The Miz as WWE Champion. Miz is pretty much Rowdy Roddy Piper to John Cena’s Hulk Hogan. People do complain about Miz being booked weak and not actually winning matches on his own. People in my age bracket can remember that Roddy Piper during the height of his wars with Hogan never actually won a match. He almost always lost by countout or DQ. Only difference is back then feuds were stretched over the whole year and now they have to be condensed into a two-month cycle to fit into PPV schedules.
A lot of people breathed a sigh of relief when Jerry Lawler didn’t get a token WWE Championship win at the Elimination Chamber PPV. I am not one of them because I love The King and I would have liked to see him win the big one. In the world of the WWE, the King winning the AWA World Title in 1988 might doesn’t count as a big one. It’s just the company’s directive. If you ever played the last few Smackdown games you will notice things like only when they started in the WWE count as a debut. It was quite amusing to see Ric Flair and his debut listed as in 1991.
Despite all of that The King has been outstanding and Michael Cole really is a great tremendous asshole. Now we have a match heading into Wrestlemania 27 with Lawler vs. Cole. Cole is having Jack Swagger train him and he gets to pick a special guest referee. There are plenty of theories all over the Internet from the RAW GM to Stone Cold Steve Austin being the referee. Who ever the referee is really is an after thought. What people are missing is the fact they are totally redoing Lawler vs. Kaufman with this angle.
If the WWE had any guts, they would get Tony Clifton to be the special guest referee. I’m sure Andy would get a huge laugh out of that.
Of course getting Andy himself probably would be a much more logical choice to be the referee. Come on Andy it’s been 27 years. Wrestlemania 27…seems like a good time as any to finally make that comeback.
As for the match don’t expect anything spectacular. In fact I suggest everyone watch the original Lawler/Kaufman match. I have a feeling it will be exactly like that down to the stalling on the outside. Some people would prefer this match not to be on Wrestlemania. Perhaps they are right, but it’s not like the WWE has anything else of interest planned.
Just about one month to go and there are only four confirmed matches. Money In The Bank is probably off the show because it has it’s own shitty ppv. There probably will be a divas match of some sort. Cody Rhodes vs. Rey Mysterio is a strong possibility (I actually would like to see this match)…other then that nothing. If they are going to make the push for the show they should really start. If the show is being built around Cena and Rock coming face to face that is a hell of a gamble especially for a show that costs $54.95 in this economy.
You can see why I am becoming so disillusioned.
I’m sure it’s going to probably be a good show. Will it be worth $54.95? No way in hell. There was so much promise for things in the WWE after Summer Slam and into the months leading into The Survivor Series. But they never pulled the trigger on Nexus and now that group is dead in the water. Oh yeah I forgot Randy Orton vs. CM Punk would be a match at Wrestlemania. Too bad I don’t care about the build up for it. Though Punk continuing to call him Randal is very amusing. That should be a really good match that would be way better suited as a title match rather then a blow off to a horrible lower card feud.
Orton needs a change of venue as well. He is just so out of place on RAW. Plus next to John Cena he throws some of the worst punches in all of wrestling. Orton is one of the lucky ones though considering he was able to salvage his career after Triple H sabotaged it back in 2004. Hell being the conspiracy theorist that I am, part of me believes Triple H intentionally injured Randy Orton in that last man standing match when he chucked him over the top rope and right onto the floor. Randy is a survivor though which is good. Like I said, Punk/Orton should be a good match despite the dumb angle leading into it. It’s really amazing how bad Nexus is.
Speaking of Nexus, the latest edition to the group is Mason Ryan. Mason Ryan looks like the WWE’s version of the “I LIFT THINGS UP AND PUT THEM DOWN” body builder in these commercials for Planet Fitness here in the NYC area.
If you haven’t seen the commercial here’s a link to it.
Mason Ryan is another example of a guy they just threw out there for no reason. If we don’t have a reason to care don’t be so surprised when we don’t.
Well I found that funny and if you’ve ever heard him chime in during a backstage segment with his random Welsh sayings the only thing missing from them is him saying I LIFT THINGS UP AND PUT THEM DOWN. Funny thing is a guy like that still is the WWE’s vision of the perfect sports entertainer.
In closing the WWE signed Mexican Lucha Libre star Mistico. He will be now known as Sin Cara and I hope to God they put him on Smackdown. Putting him on RAW will do nothing for him. To be honest I have not really seen enough of his ring work to have a proper opinion on him, but he is apparently supposed to be everything Rey Mysterio used to be if not more. Rey’s body is breaking down at an alarming rate so the WWE was smart in getting someone who could essentially be the new Rey Mysterio. His only downside is he doesn’t speak English too well. He probably shouldn’t have to cut promos, but this is the WWE so we can expect him to be in wacky backstage skits as he “learns the style”.
If he goes to RAW I’m sure many on the Internet would have an orgasm at the prospect of a Daniel Bryan match with him. Lucky for us the WWE wants to crack the Latin market so I don’t think he’ll be made a joke. But this is the WWE and Mistico is smaller then Rey Mysterio back in the mid 90’s. So I’m sure there are people in “the office” saying he doesn’t have the right look. Mexican box office receipts disagree and hopefully they realize that. We shall see what happens in the coming weeks and months. I hope my cynicism is wrong and Sin Cara takes off like a rocket and carry’s Smackdown into the new decade.
On that note I am done for this week. I’m going to be honest here and just say I don’t know when my next column will be. I would like to do one in the week before Wrestlemania so I can have a nice mop up one for the week after. Perhaps my decision to retire will change, but at the moment I don’t think so. Until then though remember someone has to give you this information and it DAMN well has got to be me.
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