Wednesday, April 27, 2016

I Listen So You Don't Have To: Steve Austin Show Ep. 319

Austin gives his thoughts on Chyna in this episode
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: 319 (April 26, 2016)
Run Time: 1:16:37
Guest: None

Summary: Austin is recording a solo show this week because was drinking wine with his bad arm and spilled a full glass all over his computer. After telling that story, he talks about how he learned of Chyna’s death and reflects on her legacy and their relationship. He touches quickly on the deaths of Prince and guitarist Lonnie Mack before reviewing emailed questions from listeners. Topics included beer, Attitude Era match quality, his WrestleMania 32 appearance, getting WWE stars on Broken Skull Challenge, life advice, cars, if UFC and WWE are competing, how bigger wrestlers avoid blowing up in the ring, personal memorabilia, stunt blood, Roman Reigns, Austin’s merchandise, his new skull ring and career influences.

Quote of the week: “I just thought she was a super sweetheart lady. She had her issues — hey man, we all do. She weathered a lot of storms, she had a tough life, but on the big stage she got out there and performed. She gave her heart, she gave her heart and soul to everything she did, and she loved the business. And she was a pleasure to be around, and she was a breath of fresh air. … Man, I’ll miss you. I had so much fun with you and enjoyed all of our times that we got to spend together and our stupid brand, sense of humor. That time I busted my ass in the Houston Summit right before I was fixin’ to go out there and wrestle Mick Foley, and you were sittin’ on that anvil case, and I was putting my water on, and slipped in a pile of water and busted my ass right in front of you. I’ll remember all the good times, and I’ll remember you and I wish you were still here.”

Why you should listen: Bummer about Austin’s MacBook Pro, but this turned out to be a good week for a solo show. His thoughts on Chyna were significantly more meaningful than WWE’s tribute video (a mere collection of still images and retweets), and honestly that could have been the entire episode. He did a good job of curating questions to avoid well-worn topics, and kept the pace brisk enough such that the show seemed just the right length.

Why you should skip it: It’s still 75 minutes of one guy’s voice, which no matter how brisk can be a lot to take in for some folks. Likewise, there are those unready or unwilling to consider the complexities of Chyna’s legacy, or who simply don’t want to hear Austin doing anything other than having a rip-roaring good time.

Final thoughts: It might not rise to the level of mandatory, but the opening 25 minutes or so are pretty important for anyone willing to consider wrestling beyond the image WWE presents when the lights are on and cameras rolling. Most folks probably can do without listening to the rest of the show, but I found it much more enjoyable than some of Austin’s recent interviews with boring guests. That’s no guarantee the next solo show will be any good, but they’re so rare any more a decent effort has a chance to stand out.