Thursday, August 14, 2014

I Listen So You Don't Have To: The Ross Report Ep. 26

Bubba Ray Dudley tread no new ground, but is an articulate speaker
Photo Credit:
If you're new, here's the rundown: I listen to a handful of wrestling podcasts each week. Too many, probably, though certainly not all of them. In the interest of saving you time — in case you have the restraint to skip certain episodes — the plan is to give the bare bones of a given show and let you decide if it’s worth investing the time to hear the whole thing. There are better wrestling podcasts out there, of course, but these are the ones in my regular rotation that I feel best fit the category of hit or miss. If I can save other folks some time, I'm happy to do so.

Show: The Ross Report
Episode: 26
Run Time: 1:59:08
Guest: Bubba Ray Dudley/Bully Ray

Summary: The meat of the show starts at 36:35. The first half hour is, per usual, Ross opining on the issues of the day. Naturally, SummerSlam dominates his thoughts. The 90-minute interview with Dudley covers pretty much every aspect of his career, from how he got into the business up to his current run in TNA and a glimpse at what the future might hold.

Quote of the week: “I think [being a heel] is the easiest thing in the world, and I’m proud to say I think I proved it over the past two years. You have to go out there and not do or say one thing that elicits the emotion of happiness from the people. I don’t want to go out there and say anything cool. I don’t want to go out there and say anything funny. I don’t want to do a move that pops people. Everything that I do, from start to finish, I want you to hate me just a little bit more. I don’t want to be the heel just because the other guy is the babyface. I want to be the heel because you hate me more than you love him. And I embrace that. I don’t go out there to just get your traditional boo. I want to go out there and elicit such hatred form you that when I go to my car there’s a brick through my window saying, ‘Don’t ever come back to this town.’ I want you to slash my tires.”

Why you should listen: Two reasons — either you’re a complete newcomer to Dudley’s career and need a good overview, or you’re a Bubba Ray devotee who hangs on the man’s every word. Also, don’t be afraid of there being too much ECW nostalgia or glorification of the TLC matches. Plus, especially if you listen at 2x, you might lapse and think you’re listening to Paul Heyman. And at least JR doesn’t say anything patently offensive or ridiculously self-serving.

Why you should skip it: You don’t care what JR thinks about who should win at SummerSlam. Beyond that, the show touches so many topics it offers little depth on any of them. I haven’t seen more than 30 seconds of Dudley’s work in TNA, but this interview told me nothing I didn’t already know about that or any other aspect of his career.

Final thoughts: Dudley is a thoughtful speaker with a broad range of experiences. But if you’re already familiar with Ross’ thoughts on the wrestling business of yesterday, today and tomorrow, you know pretty much what Dudley has to say on the same topics. The only interesting anecdote regards the Dudleys, Hardys and Edge and Christian wanting a bigger payout after their SummerSlam TLC match, but that’s hardly new information. Especially given the fact this episode clocks in at two hours, you’re better off looking for other interviews to satisfy your Dudley curiosity.