Thursday, June 28, 2018

Twitter Request Line, Vol. 241

Can NXT take the baseball rehab assignment and make it into a great angle?
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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 afternoon (most of the time). Without further ado, here are your questions and my answers:

Baseball rehab assignments are kinda boring. Guy makes a start, plays a third of a game, and then he gets pulled. However, it does have the base for a good NXT story. Wrestler gets hurt, has to go to NXT for a "rehab" assignment. They get to wrestle local talent on a television taping to much applause and adulation. Some native wrestler who feels disrespected takes umbrage with that and confronts the rehabbing wrestler backstage later in the show. Words are exchanged, and maybe a brawl breaks out. The WWE wrestler is gone the next show, but the NXT wrestler keeps needling them and needling them, calling them out, playing mindgames, what have you. It culminates in an assault at RAW or Smackdown, where the offended wrestler launches a sneak attack, a vicious one perhaps with a weapon in an attempt to draw them out for a match, which happens at the following Takeover. The WWE worker wins, because the little shit has to get their comeuppance, but it's worked competitively and with at least one razor-close nearfall, if not a "visual" pin that doesn't count because the ref is woozy or something. Of course, this kind of angle has to happen with a babyface in the rehab role and a heel in the shithead role, and because NXT is somewhat of a normal wrestling universe, that would actually result in the heel getting booed. Simple, yet effective!

Honestly, it's always time to talk about people's unresolved pasts. It's one thing to let a guy like Michael Vick or even Mike Tyson live their lives because they both paid their debts to society and appear to have been rehabilitated, although in the latter case, I will never begrudge a rape survivor from feeling skittish or not wanting to support or even talk about Tyson. It's a whole other thing when someone like Austin has a history that he won't even talk about anymore. People give him the benefit of the doubt that he's a changed man because he has other woke opinions or they liked his wrestling or whatever. I'm guilty of this too in the past. It's wrong, and having Amore on his podcast is proof positive that he hasn't really changed that much.

If society at-large treated domestic abusers accordingly and actually tried rehabilitating them instead of ignoring victims and letting the abusers go with slaps on the wrists, then maybe the wholesale forgiveness people heap onto these offenders wouldn't be so bad, but the deck is so hilariously tilted against anyone who speaks up. Maybe Austin's time is up finally. I doubt he'll get the reckoning he deserves, but allowing Amore to continue to taunt his alleged victim (and remember, charges dropped doesn't equal innocence) shows real gall, if you ask me.

Ross is a pedant who fashions himself as a quirky nerd but is actually kind of a creeper, so he's Mick Foley. Chandler thinks he's a lot funnier than he really is but is extremely bitter, so he's Dolph Ziggler. Even though The Ryback isn't Italian or an actor, he shares a lot of the same personality traits as Joey: oddly affable, a bit thick-headed, a good friend. Monica is high-strung and details-oriented and prone for self-humiliation, so Nattie Neidhart plays her. Phoebe is a spacy hippie who is probably bisexual and has an affinity for music, so hello Mickie James. Finally, Rachel needs everything to be about her, even if she claims she just wants to settle down and have a normal life. Ronda Rousey to a tee.

Obviously, you go with what you know. I don't care about those war shooters, whether realistic or totally fantastic like Overwatch. Super Smash Bros. is good, but I'd rather play it with a bunch of n00bs rather than watch it. However, competitive Pok√©mon? Hell yeah, I'm down. It might seem a bit boring to outsiders, especially since it's turn-based JRPG battle in nature, but I could watch battles and absorb strategy all day.