Friday, June 17, 2016

I Listen So You Don't Have To: Cheap Heat June 15

Noelle Foley and her dad are on Cheap Heat 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: Cheap Heat
Episode: Foleys in the Bank! (June 15, 2016)
Run Time: 1:11:38
Guest: Mick and Noelle Foley (44:22)

Summary: Peter Rosenberg and Stat Guy Greg hit the ground running by taking a quick look at Monday’s RAW. After an even quicker look at NXT TakeOver: The End, Greg shares stories of conversations with various wrestlers, Rosenberg openly yearns to reunite with David Shoemaker during SummerSlam and the Money In The Bank preview turns into a consideration of which WWWF/WWF/WWE Champions, from Buddy Rogers to the present, might have been least deserving of the gold. Then on come the Foleys to discuss social media, Noelle’s boyfriend and her training as well as the famous Foley frugality. Rosenberg then asks the Foleys about RAW’s opening segment, then they promote the upcoming Holy Foley and revisit how Mick got back on good terms with Vince McMahon.

Quote of the week: Rosenberg: “I know guys, please don’t judge: I started it, haven’t finished it, my parents are in town, it’s been a crazy week. But… Let’s jump aside then real quick right now, ’cause there’s not a ton on RAW to get to, a couple other things to hit. But how was the NXT free-per-view?”

Why you should listen: If I keep staring at this blank spot on the screen, will words that make sense magically appear? If you must listen to a portion of this episode, try skipping almost the entire first hour to hear Mick Foley discuss his relationship with McMahon. You’ll likely feel a tinge of pride when Greg catches Foley trying to gloss over a moment and presses him for further detail, and the peek behind this particular curtain is compelling, even for someone as consistently exposed as Mrs. Foley’s Baby Boy.

Why you should skip it: When he’s not haggling over Greg’s girlfriend’s wrestling fan credentials, he is literally reading RAW results beat by beat. Listening to Rosenberg crap on Corporate Kane’s appearance a few hours after hearing how Shoemaker appreciated the bits and used them to launch a far more worthwhile conversation is a good way to illuminate the distinction between the two shows. The title lineage talk is mildly interesting, but for as little insight is added, you may as well look up the Wikipedia page yourself. This is the second time the Foleys have been on the show to promote their WWE Network project, and they have nothing new to add in that regard. What is new is a breakdown of who has more Instagram followers (Noelle just passed Rosenberg) and, for the love of God, I could have lived my entire life without hearing Frank The Clown discussed on an ESPN (or any other) podcast, but Cheap Heat ruined that for me, too.

Final thoughts: My good friend (as well as former college classmate and erstwhile writing partner) David Kincannon posed a good question while I was Twitter ranting about this episode - “Who does Rosenberg want to listen to the show? What audience is it being made for? Because it’s obviously not for people like us.” He’s absolutely right. I can understand (though not agree with) the choice to overlook Lucha Underground. But once you’ve decided your audience is WWE fans, aren’t you also considering the fact that the lion’s share of those fans willing to go to the trouble to download a podcast about wrestling are Internet-savvy enough to also seek out and consume NXT productions? Perhaps not the weekly show, but at least the special events? Recapping RAW is useless — anyone listening to Cheap Heat knows quite well what happened on RAW less than 48 hours before the podcast went live — unless you can actually add insight or entertainment or something that supplements watching the show. With each passing week, Cheap Heat (at least the part Rosenberg dominates) is routinely unable to add anything to the conversation. He might be a great fan and a decent person, but he’s got next to no respect for his listening audience. I am morbidly curious to see how much worse it gets.