Wednesday, April 13, 2016

I Listen So You Don't Have To: Steve Austin Show Ep. 315

Part two of Austin's interview with the Bridge and Tunnel Boys is up this week
Photo Credit:
If you’re new, here’s the rundown. We 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 many wrestling podcasts out there, of course, but this feature largely hews to the regular rotation we feel best fit the category of hit or miss. If we can save other folks some time, we’re happy to do so.

Show: Steve Austin Show
Episode: 315 (April 12, 2016)
Run Time: 1:18:24
Guest: Enzo Amore and Big Cass (9:38)

Summary: Austin is backstage at RAW in the Staples Center, so he chats up Amore and Big Cass about travel into Los Angeles, their drinking and eating habits, driving from town to town, Amore’s DJ experience, Kevin Owens and Twitter, WWE dress code, the New Age Outlaws, how their characters are presented, favorite and not so favorite airports and arenas and the glory of little-seen Neville-Sami Zayn matches. When the topic turns to Amore’s broken leg, the guys get to bring up Cass’ singing battle with Aiden English and Amore’s promo book. The chat ends with the guys selling Austin on American Alpha and reliving highlights of WrestleMania 32.

Quote of the week: Cass: “It was kind of a blessing in disguise when he got hurt, because I think people the feeling on me was, he may just a little bit of Enzo’s sidekick, let’s see what he can do without him, so it gave me an opportunity to spread my wings and show them what I could do, you know, in his absence in terms of in-ring work and promo work, and I think I did pretty well for myself. The one segment that I did, probably my favorite moment that I’ve ever had in NXT, besides our matches with Dash and Dawson, was I had a singing contest with Aiden English on NXT television … A, it’s your opportunity to shine, and B, it’s your opportunity to keep this thing going for when he comes back, so I kind of embraced it and I was actually looking forward to it, after he got injured, kind of being on my own for a little bit ’cause I was confident, but deep down, it was also a test for me, to myself, to prove to myself, ‘OK, you know, you are good on your own, you can do this without Enzo.’ And that’s what I kind of feel like the company was also looking for.”

Why you should listen: Did you love Episode 314? Well come on back for 315. Austin was hard up for a podcast topic, RAW was just up the road from 316 Gimmick St. and the fans love The Realest Guys in the Room. The guys are even more at ease with Austin this time around — the undisputed highlight is an a cappella rendition of “My Girl” with Cass on lead and Amore and Austin doing backup — and (as if he read my in) the interview is much more about the guys as a team, which really reduces the segments where one half of the team sits back to listen as the other tells his own story.

Why you should skip it: The biggest knock I have here is that Austin ends by telling his guests the backstage Broken Skull IPA story he used in the opening monologue of the previous episode, darn near verbatim. And maybe you don’t want to know the NXT roster was used to play skeleton champions for Triple H’s main event entrance in Dallas. Or perhaps you’ll be bummed to only have descriptions of Neville-Zayn classics and not actual video. Other than that, man, these guys are great together and I have no idea why you’d even want a reason to take a pass. I guess there’s a few s-bombs, so heads up if you only scope the family friendly Tuesday shows — earmuffs.

Final thoughts: I really, truly hope Austin takes a full look at American Alpha and give those guys the same podcast treatment. I feel he’s helping to make these NXT stars in a way that Jim Ross praising Shinsuke Nakaumra won’t ever approach. We get to know them better as people and performers and, like all good behind-the-scenes footage, it helps fans pull even harder for their success. If you’ve bailed on Austin’s show for any reason, I highly suggest giving this one and its immediate predecessor a fair shot.