Friday, September 5, 2014

Twitter Request Line, Vol. 92

Photo via Getty Images
It's Twitter Request Line time, everyone! I take to Twitter to get questions about issues in wrestling, past and present, and answer them on here because 140 characters can't restrain me, fool! If you don't know already, follow me @tholzerman, and wait for the call on Wednesday to ask your questions. Hash-tag your questions #TweetBag, and look for the bag to drop Thursday morning (most of the time). Without further ado, here are your questions and my answers!

The politician? Bob Dole. The promo? HARD TIMES, DADDY. Do I think he'd mean a single word of what he was repeating? Probably not. However, hearing him talk about how he was going to take Ric Flair out for the textile workers that his policies probably helped send out of work would be comedic enough that I might be snowed into voting for him as a troll.

When I think of the phrase "bunk bed," think of a horizontal thing stacked upon another horizontal thing. The move that symbolizes the dual horizontal nature the best seems to be the Romero special, or what is more commonly referred to as the Mexican surfboard stretch. However, I would probably go with a move that would look like someone falling off the top bunk, which is an unnamed maneuver that Colt Cabana debuted a couple of years ago. Basically, he wrangles his victim into a fireman's carry on the top rope before hopping down and dropping his victim chest first across the top turnbuckle. Either one works; it just depends on how you want to view the representation of a bunk bed in wrestling.

A Chikara guest that's only appeared once is rarely any fun. But my favorite Chikara guest star is almost as hard to choose as, well, say, my favorite Simpsons episode. How can I choose among a pool that's dozens deep on superb wrestlers, stunning characters, or a combination of both? Like, how does one choose between the ebullient heroism of El Generico or the legendary joshi aura of Manami Toyota? Tommy Dreamer in Chikara was surreal as it was great, but then how could I choose him over Akira Tozawa? Colt Cabana is a sore subject with some people, but he's usually baller as hell in the confines of a Chikara ring, but does he really rate over Kikutaro?

That all being said, I guess I'll have to go with the collective of the Sendai Girls. Meiko Satomura, Dash Chisako, and Sendai Sachiko attained as much nirvana in one weekend as any group of wrestlers could at the last time King of Trios happened. Their run is the stuff that folk songs are written about.

Doowop dooby doo doowop doowah doolang

*crosses @duyarvish off the list of people to kill*


Again, choosing my favorite child theoretically would be easier to do than my favorite episode of this show. Spoiler alert, I love TJ with all my heart, but you better believe my yet-unborn-daughter Josie will probably have daddy wrapped around her tiny little pinkie from birth so there's that. Anyway, after 552 episodes and one movie, choosing a LEAST favorite episode is even fraught with hemming and hawing. Is the infamous Armen Tamzarian episode worse than the one where the writers retconned Marge's and Homer's courtship in the backdrop of the grunge movement of the '90s? But fuck the shitty episodes, what about the good ones?

My sentimental favorite is "Kamp Krusty," as it was the first time I really thought "Hey, this is probably my favorite show of all-time." Everyone loves "You Only Move Twice," and I'm no different. But then how does one discount "Grade School Confidential," "Homer at the Bat," "Homer's Barbershop Quartet," "Summer of 4 ft. 2," "Boy Scoutz n the Hood," "Marge Vs. the Monorail..." Oh my God, I think I'm going to have an aneurysm just thinking about this.

I think I'm just going to cycle back and say "Kamp Krusty" is my favorite episode and be done with it. But really, I could do a whole playlist of episodes that could act as a collective favorite and not feel like I just copped out.

What is it with YOU PEOPLE and wanting long lists? Lucky for you, I'm happy to oblige. Not in order, because goddammit, I'M ONLY A MAN.
  • Road Warrior Animal - I noted last week this pattern was my favorite because it was elaborate but unpretentious at the same time.
  • Road Warrior Hawk - I always wondered why Hawk's facepaint was so simple compared to Animal's. It's not like Animal was quoting Dostoyevsky while Hawk was wrecking shit. In fact, Hawk was the more verbally profound one. Eh, I'm overthinking it.
  • Hakushi - I bet those kanji characters were saying "FUCK YOU, WHITE PEOPLE AHAHAHAH." Still, they probably took a long time to paint and looked stark and cool compared to the gaudy neon spandex vomit that covered the WWF landscape at the time.
  • Goldust (Darth Maul design) - Wrestlers have a really terrible problem with parodies of other pop culture stuff (just look at Pro Wrestling Tees for examples), but Goldust hit a home run with his current facepaint motif.
  • Yoshi Tatsu - The half-face design was bad-fucking-ass.
  • Demolition - Their facepaint always made them look like bargain basement Road Warriors, but the Roadies were fucking cool anyway. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
  • The Batiri -Their paint is so good that I'm not sure that their faces aren't really colored like that.
  • The Great Muta - Specifically, I dig Keiji Mutoh's facepaint from when he rebooted his painted alter-ego recently. Some things get better with age.
  • Devastation Corporation - Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, yup, and Sidney Bakabella's hulking bruisers' homage to the Roadies/Demolition/Powers of Pain is pretty tight.
  • Kana - Fuck Paul Stanley, Kana's my Starchild.
Not happy about having to leave Bull Nakano off this list, but such is life.
The laziest-best way is just to go to Texas Roadhouse. But the best-best way is probably to look up a good recipe for a Thai beef satay and make a peanut dipping sauce for it.

The one wrestler who looks most like a bear is Bill Carr, he of Tremendous Investigations fame (if you don't know, educate yourself on the Beyond Wrestling YouTube channel). Even though he and Dan Barry are HARD-NOSED DETECTIVES, I think Carr might be a *bit* too jovial to be Smokey the Bear. However, Michael Elgin is SERIOUS ENOUGH to be the bear, even though he's a bit undersized. He's also making overtures at changing careers. Baseball's nice, but what about being the spokesman for fire safety in the woods? WHAT ABOUT IT, ELGIN?

To be completely honest, I haven't seen a whole lot of WCW pay-per-views, so I'm not sure how well the WarGames matches from Fall Brawl hold up. WWE's best main event, however, has to be Shawn Michaels vs. Mankind from In Your House: Mind Games. This match was where Mick Foley arrived in WWE as more than just a Monster of the Month for Undertaker. The visual of him stabbing his leg is iconic too.

You could always watch Impa... AHAHAHAHAH oh geez, I almost got through that with a straight face. Thankfully for you, the time has never been better for wrestling on television, even if it's not really on television in your area. NWA Smoky Mountain and NWA SAW post their weekly shows to YouTube, and I would recommend both. However, the big recommendation would be AAW on MaddyG TV. If you have a Roku,  you can get MaddyG TV as a channel for free, and AAW is a great promotion to stay current on the "super" indie scene.

I swear I've seen that segment before in the past. WWE has teased it before, and nothing came of it. Will something happen this time around? It's September, where feud teases go to die. I wouldn't expect anything of it right now.

The rumblings before said Gulf War started had a Hulk Hogan/Ultimate Warrior rematch slated, and given how badly Warrior was apparently flopping at the box office, I tend to believe those rumblings would've come to fruition had Vince McMahon not had the idea to have Sgt. Slaughter go turncoat thanks to American intervention in the cradle of civilization.

First off, take any idea you may have of tying the price into your sign and burn it. Not only is doing the job of WWE's marketing department incredibly lame, it's unoriginal, even by pro wrestling standards. You should try to want to be fresh. Even if you want to hit on a popular beat, do something you don't think anyone else is going to do. Anyway, the only time I made a sign to bring to a TV taping was in 2000, when I went to a Smackdown taping and brought an acrostic sign that said:




Yeah, I'm the lame ass you don't want to be taking sign suggestions from. But if you must get input from me, I would go with something short, sweet, and targeting Stephanie McMahon. Maybe playing into the meme that she's the ultimate power mom? I suck at this. Sorry!

Far be it from me to parent someone else's kids. I consider myself liberal among the throng of parents, but I'm sure some will consider me strict. Even so, I don't know what your standards, or more importantly, your brother/sister's standards are. But general advice would be to start incrementally. Find the most family-friendly promotion, like Chikara or old-school WWE on The Network, and start there, even at five. Then, as the kids grow and mature, move onto other avenues.

But even so, as an aside, fans don't normally get into wrestling at a later age. Some exceptions are out there, but still, fans are minted in youth. That reason is why most wrestling companies should be all-ages and family-friendly. Fuck that "mature/edgy" noise. Wrestling doesn't have to be adult-only to be good. No form of entertainment does. If you can edgy/adult wrestling, that's great. Pro Wrestling Guerrilla is 21+, and it's fantastic. But PWG is the exception to the rule. Market to the kids, and don't half-ass it.

The one that I have pinned to the top of my Twitter profile, of course.

The NFC West is looking more and more like it's declining in quality from last year, which means the Seahawks might not have to shift out of first gear and still be the odds on favorite to win homefield advantage. The question is which team will end up taking them on in the title game? The Saints, Eagles, Falcons, Packers, Bears, Niners, and Bucs all are enticing picks, and honestly, I'm not sure any team in the NFC is really out of the discussion, right? I mean, Washington could somehow pull a run out of its ass based on Robert Griffin III surging back to 2012 form. But since I'm boring and safe, gimme the Saints as Seattle's title opponent.

And since I'm going the safe route, shouldn't everyone's pick for the AFC Championship Game be the Broncos vs. Patriots until another team in that conference proves it deserves more than a passing look? God, how many teams in the AFC look like dumpster fires this year? Would anyone be remotely shocked if the Browns made a deep playoff run?

But of course! Cottonbelly is one of the few true babyfaces in wrestling, and the fans, at least in Chikara, respond to him so positively. And he's not just all character either. He's really good in the ring too. I was surprised to see that he was one of the three best workers on the Wrestling Is Respect card where I saw him wrestle a full match for the first time. Gentlemania runs wild because the guy behind it is so gosh-darn talented.