|WWF Byte This! by E.C. Ostermeyer||
This is the WWE Byte This report for Friday, 31 May 2002, and I'm E.C.
Lights! Explosions! Fireworks!
FIRE! Lots of Fire!
Ladies and Gentlemen, the new WWE colossus is on the 'Net!
At least, that's what you are supposed to think with this jerky, flashy video promo at the show's opening.
Prior to the
We get a video from the Edge/Kurt Angle "Steel Cage Match" from Thursday's Smackdown.
Hogan interferes, and I'm getting WCW flashbacks.
It ain't all that pleasurable, either.
I wonder if Vince gave him a "Creative Control" clause in his contract?
Nah, Vince wouldn't be THAT stupid!
Your hosts are Kevin Kelly and Dr. Tom Prich- ?
Well, now, it's Howard Finkel actually, who has taken some time off from being on the Raw crew while Dr. Tom is down in Cincinnati with Heartland Wrestling Association this week.
Fink says he's heard about the Byte This! studio audience, and wonders where they are?
Kelly says that the audience turnout is a little light this week.
As in "nil."
Fink says that it reminds him of the time they were in Red Deer recently, not that he's going to run Red Deer down or anything, you understand.
Kelly turns the topic to this past week's Tough Enough finale, where Jackie and Linda each took home a WWE contract!
(Pic of Jake and Kenny on the Byte This chyron. Jake looks like somebody just put a cherry bomb in his shorts.)
Fink says that that's the fun of Tough Enough.
Male or female, only the best win the contract.
Fink says that Jake buried himself during the final interview with producer Kevin Dunn, by saying he was a slow learner.
"You can't afford to be a 'slow learner' in this business," says Fink, "and you certainly don't tell the guy interviewing you that you are!"
Kelly compares Jackie and Linda's chances to those of Maven and Nidia, the TE 1 winners, saying that he likes Jackie and Linda's chances better.
"Demolition" from Edmonton, AB in the Chatroom apologizes for the bald fat fan jumping in the ring on Raw Monday night, and hopes that the fans don't hold Edmonton in any bad light.
Kelly says by no means, stuff like that happens.
This brings in Droz with this week's "Two Cents" his weekly review of all things Raw.
Droz says that they never know what happens when a loose cannon like this guy lets go.
"I remember one time a while back, a fan ran in on Kane in the backstage area," says Droz, "Kane just about killed the guy before the security guys were able to drag him off."
Kelly says that this will cause WWE to beef up their security.
(Byte This! producer Big Country is running the video in question from the Rob Van Dam/ Eddie Guerrero Ladder Match on Raw, including the fan run-in.)
"Thank God Eddie saw that fan running in out of the corner of his eye," says Kelly, "Otherwise, it would have been just terrible. For both of them."
Changing the topic, Droz is enthusiastic about the return of Chris Benoit, and the discussion turns to which promotion he actually belongs to, Raw or Smackdown?
Fink says that Steve Austin should demand of Ric Flair that Benoit be brought into the Raw promotion because of Benoit's actions Monday night.
"If Benoit is able to get into the ring and clobber Austin on Raw," says Droz, "he should be put on the Raw roster so that Austin can get a shot at him."
The topic shifts to (Uuurggh!) Tommy Dreamer drinking Undertaker's tobacco spit!
"I was having the dry-heaves watching him," say Droz.
(You and me both, Dorz!)
OF Tough Enough 2's outcome, Droz says you never, EVER tell the show's producer you are a "slow learner."
"Jeez," says Droz, "it's a job interview after all! Would you tell your prospective boss that you fall asleep at your desk? No way! You've gotta be smarter than that!"
Drpz leaves, and we go back to the fan run-in, where Fink compares the fan's run-in to that of Morgana, the Kissing Bandit.
Kelly says that Morgana was WAY better-looking than this guy.
"He must be the rage of his friends and family right now," says Fink, shaking his head in disgust.
Kelly says that maybe WWE should take Edmonton off the rotation for a while, huh?
"By no means," says Fink, "who could have predicted this? Nobody!"
Kelly reminds the fans for the umpteenth time to please don't run into the ring when there is a match on, "or you'll get hurt. Badly. And just so you know, we DO prosecute under these circumstances."
Mike from Japan (!) calls in and asks who the "Evil" is that is pestering the Hurricane?
(Picture on the chyron shows the ripped-in-half photo of the Hurricane with a woman's arms around him.)
Kelly and Fink say that Mike's just gonna have to watch the show on WWE.com, since the Japanese TV delays the broadcasts a month or more over there.
Mike is a Petty Officer 2nd Class from Cincinnati, OH on the USS Kitty Hawk, and is in for the full twenty-year hitch.
Both Kelly and Fink thank Mike for the great job he and his buddies are doing. Mike is actually touched; you can hear it in his voice.
"Outthink the Fink" has a "Thug Superstar" Tazz T-shirt still in its bag as the prize.
In honor of today's "Byte This" guest, Fink wants to know in which city Austin 3:16 was born, and the name of the building?
Kelly says that today's Classic Clip has to do with that very incident, and comes from the "King of the Ring PPV" from that year.
Big Country says that they have a video package from Tough Enough 2 featuring Seth Mates doing interviews on site.
Seth interviews Coach, who goes totally kayfabe on Mates' ass.
Mates asks what would have happened if Coach had been in the hot tub instead of Petey?
"Let's just say Jackie wouldn't have been able to walk the next day," say Coach with a BIG grin.
Mates eggs on the craziness, first with TE1's Chris Harvard, and then with TE2's Hawk, who says he's still wearing Hardcore Holly's handprint.
Here's Darryl from TE1.
Mates asks him who had the worst B.O. in the house?
Darryl gives Mates "The Look!"
Mates corners Jackie's boyfriend Jason, who downplays the whole Jackie/Petey hot tub incident.
"Who'd win if you faced Petey," asks Mates.
"Uh, 'Wrestling Rules' or 'Anything Goes,'" asks Jason warily
Mates isn't satisfied with this answer, and puts the question to Hawk, Petey, Darryl, who all say they could take this goof.
To wrap things up we get the kind and sensible Al Snow.
Al gets Kevin Kelly with the Circle Game shot, ("Made ya look, Kev!").
Mr. Snow then wraps the segment up with a rousing chorus of "My baloney has a first name, it's 'B-O-N-E-R...!"
Back to the studio where Kelly and Fink are both just ragging the hell out of Jackie's boyfriend.
"The guy's a Complete Joke," says Kelly, and for once, Fink agrees with him. So does the chyron, showing boyfriend Jason with a "Complete Joke" caption.
(I smell a lawsuit here...)
Kelly says that Jason will get dropped by Jackie the first time she goes on the road
"...unless he's rich," says Kelly, "If not, he's history!"
Kelly says it's good to see Matt Morgan again. Matt's been training with the HWA.
As for the TE2 winners, Linda and Jackie, well,
"Welcome to the Jungle," says Fink with an evil laugh.
Kelly shills for this Saturday's WWE "Confidential" show where they are planning a memorial retrospective on Davey Boy Smith.
The Hart family is to be involved.
Fink compliments "Mean Gene" Okerlund on the job he's doing with the show.
Kelly says that all of the new shows have great ratings.
"Word of mouth is what's gonna promote these new shows," says Fink, "and "Confidential" owes a lot to the "Byte This!" show paving the way, as it were."
Big Country thanks Kelly and Fink for putting over "MY Byte This! show," which gets snorts of outrage from cast and crew.
We also get another chyron shot.
This time it's of Chris Vallo who is "hard at work" on the toilet once again.
That pink underwear is just creepy!
Caller Ryan from Vancouver says that WWE shouldn't bring shows to Edmonton anymore
"That's crazy, what that guy did," says Ryan. "He should be locked up!"
Fink compliments the Vancouver fans on being so smart.
Ryan tells about the Saskatoon fan this week (?) who tried to get into the cage during Kurt Angle's match. Kelly says that Security was heavier at Saskatoon, and nothing happened worth mentioning.
Ryan comments that the WWE can ill-afford having another top-carder injured, whether by a fan or otherwise.
Kelly says that, it's a hazard of the business, but everyone pulls together when a superstar gets hurt.
Ryan then says that Jackie will leave Jason for Randy Orton.
"I think Stacy Keibler may have something to say about that," say Kelly with a laugh.
Ryan then asks if Dawn Marie went to law school after ECW folded, and can we expect some conflict between Dawn Marie and Stacy?
"Surely you don't think Vince would stoop so low as to pit two women against
each other?" says Kelly, "No, never!"
Ryan also asks if there will be some crossover matches between Raw and Smackdown prior to "King of the Ring?"
Kelly says that there will be qualifying matches to determine the roster.
We take a break with a video of the conclusion of Monday's hot Intercontinental Title Ladder Match between RVD and Eddie Guerrero. Steve Austin gets in a shot on Eddie, decks Ric Flair and Arn Anderson, then gets clocked but good from behind by Chris Benoit.
Good Ol' Jim Ross 'bout has a conniption fit right there at the announcer's table.
"WOULD SOMEBODY PLEASE EXPLAIN THIS TO ME?!" hollers Ross.
(Try attending the Creative Team script sessions more often, JR!)
Kelly and Fink discuss the Ladder Match and it's aftermath.
Fink was amazed at the huge ovation Benoit got when he returned to the ring.
"What the hell happened?" asks Fink, shaking his head, "well, it'll be interesting to see what happens when Benoit returns to the ring full time,"
Caller Mark asks Kelly's thoughts about the recent ratings slide?
"The numbers don't lie," say Kelly, being surprisingly honest, "but we think the ratings will be back where they were two months ago before too long if we keep pushing what the fans want to see."
Mark counters, and questions giving away PPV quality matches like the "Ladder Match" or "Steel Cage Match" just to "hotshot" the ratings?
Kelly says you got to get the product out, and make it the best every time.
Fink says that they can't afford the old way by filling the show with the squash matches between the champ and the jobber anymore.
"The fans expect more from us nowadays," says Fink.
"We drew a line in the sand Monday," says Kelly, "we may take a step back but we will take five or more forward. We know the ratings will be slow in coming back. Word of mouth is always slow, but it's the best way to build a fan base."
Tony from Philly wants to know about how Rhyno is doing?
Kelly says Rhyno's on a 12-month recovery plan.
"It's almost a given that he will be out for the full term," says Kelly, "given the extent of his surgery and his recovery.
"Once he's back, well, Rhyno is undrafted, so he can show up anywhere," says Kelly. "the same goes for Benoit. He's not been cleared to wrestle as of yet, so he can show up on both shows if he wants!"
Fink asks Tony if it's time for Raw and Smackdown to do a trade?
Tony says Austin should be traded for Benoit, and maybe there should be another trade around so that the Four Horsemen could be rebuilt with Benoit, Guerrero, and some others.
Kelly says that Ric Flair should sacrifice a veteran to get a young hotshot talent like Randy Orton, to keep adding depth to the roster.
At this point, glass breaks all over the place, and Steve Austin is live on the phone from San Antonio, Texas, where it's hot as hell today according to Stone Cold.
Austin gets right to the point about Chris Benoit's return.
"I'm glad Benoit made it back, but he's a stupid, sorry bastard to take me out first thing after he gets back. He's messing with Stone Cold and that's something he shouldn't do!"
Kelly asks Austin about the 'Net comments that he's "not happy?"
"Damn right I'm unhappy! The writing's pretty shitty," says Austin, "I don't know if anything is gonna change with the Creative bastards but something better and damn fast!"
Kelly asks Austin's thoughts about the Brand Split.
Austin thinks the Brand Split sucks so far, but he does like the schedule easing off. It gives him more time with Debra.
Kelly asks about the fan run-in?
"Aw hell, man, people been jumpin' in the ring since I started in this business," says Austin, "Hell, Earl Hebner was there, Security was there, and I was there and things got pretty, well, "hands-on," if you get the idea. If this guy thinks he can get in the ring, he better think about who he's getting in the ring with!"
Asked about Brock Lesnar's current career in WWE, Austin thinks that Brock Lesnar is a blue-chipper, one to watch, but that "Next Big Thing" gimmick of his is pretty lame, and needs work. Lesnar needs to talk for himself to get over with the fans.
Austin has nothing but good things to say about rookie Randy Orton, however; he's been a big fan of his dad, Bob Orton Jr.
Austin says Randy is on his way up.
Austin recalls the birth of the "Austin 3:16" angle and how it started out as a promo on Jake Roberts.
"I could have done other things to push my career," says Austin, "but none of them worked like Austin 3:16! It was a real rocket booster for this career of mine."
Speaking of which, Fink asks about the latest angle in Austin's success, the "What?" angle.
Austin says it all started with Christian leaving a phone message on his answering machine, how it grew from that, and how great it's been for the fans and his career.
A comment from the Chatroom asks if Austin will be putting out a CD of his songs?
"Yeah," says Austin, "and maybe I'll start doing shampoo commercials!"
Kelly asks Austin who will win the Tyson-Lewis fight?
Austin says if Tyson goes inside, and Lewis lets him in, Tyson will win. If Lewis keeps him out, he's got a chance.
Kelly compliments Austin on teaching Tyson to promo properly.
Caller Dan asks Austin what his fantasy match would like to be?
Austin can't answer that one, though off-hand he liked matching with the Rock and Ricky Steamboat.
Caller Jesse from New Jersey, says Austin "has big balls for saying how unhappy he is!"
Jesse then asks whatever happened to the autobiography Austin was writing?
Austin says his attention span isn't the best right now, but maybe the book will come out sometime soon, and should be maybe 200-250 pages.
A caller in San Antonio says for Austin to meet him downtown and he will buy him some beers.
"Tell him to meet me at Rudy's and I'll help him empty his wallet and Rudy's cooler at the same time," says Austin with a laugh.
Kelly and Austin discuss his new video, especially the featured match with Ricky Steamboat.
Austin says was one of his worst matches ever.
Fink wants to know if Austin will show up in other outside projects like the stint he did on "Nash Bridges?"
"I can't do it now because of the schedule I've got, " says Austin, "I told Vince after my neck surgery that I didn't want to do any outside projects; I just wanted to work in WWE. I'm not happy staying in one place all the time. I like being on the road, though it's good to get home once in a while. But maybe, I may just get in some outside projects if time permits. Just not right away."
Kelly asks Austin about the phone call he had with Lita after she injured her neck.
"She was in St. Louis, and the doctors there were ragging on her to have the surgery done at once.
"I told her as tough as you are, a plane ride isn't gonna hurt you, so get down to San Antonio and see my Dr. Lloyd Youngblood. You don't need to get cut on in St. Louis. You can put all your trust in Dr. Youngblood, because he has no BS, and always tells you straight out what's wrong, and how he's gonna fix it."
Kelly calls Austin the "Bionic Redneck," (which gets a chuckle from The Rattlesnake) and wonders how he always seems to come back from some horrific injuries.
"I got no ligaments in my knees is how, ya dumb bastard," says Austin with a laugh, "the storylines may suck, but I'm still having fun. I ain't gonna let no injury run me off. When I get done with it, fine, I'll walk away, and only I am gonna know when that is."
Kelly and Fink say Devon Cudding from Cambridge Ontario wins "Outthink the Fink" with the answer of "Milwaukee Wisconsin," at the "Mecca Arena," as the birthplace of "Austin 3:16."
And, just to beat on a dead horse some more, Kelly asks Austin about the "Plane Ride from Hell."
"It's a lot of bullshit is what it is," growls Austin, "that's me and my wife, thirty, forty thousand feet over the OCEAN, with this shit going on in the back! Nobody gets in my face doing that kind of thing. They are lucky I was up front sleeping, because if I wasn't..."
We hear the familiar "Snap! Fssshhh!" Of a pop-top being opened.
Austin says he's gonna go drink a case of Miller Light since he's just back from the gym.
"Somebody says why doncha have six-pack abs like the other guys," laughs Austin, "aw hell, I'm proud of my abs, and I gotta better use for six-packs!"
Austin winds things up, saying he's gonna take a shower and drink some more beers.
Kelly and Fink thank him for showing up, and Austin leaves.
Whoops, the guys left Brian from Biloxi hanging on the phone.
Brian wanted to talk with Austin, that he's sorry Austin is unhappy with the way things are currently going, but that he and all the fans are still behind him.
Rob from Kansas City hangs up, and Kelly just rips the guy and Kansas City for that.
Whoa, Rob comes right back and asks Big Country, Kelly, and Fink how they would write Austin's career into a new direction if they were the Creative Team?
Lots of hemming and hawing, and a satisifed chuckle from Rob on nailing these three windbags.
Rob compliments BC on the great show today.
Kelly, miffed, says that BC is insinuating that Rob is gay.
BC says no way, and compliments Rob on his good taste.
Rob says BC is way over in KC, even more than former KC hometown success stories like Jonathan Coachman and Harley Race.
Kelly says that Rob is a suck-ass.
Rob chuckles some more, and hangs up.
BC and Kelly insult each other some more, wasting a good five minutes in the process.
Fink says that the Chatroom is saying that Big Country's Mom will be a contestant on Tough Enough Three.
BC asks Fink if "Vera" will be ready as well?
Fink gives BC a dirty look.
The show wraps up as Fink shills the Upcoming Events calendar, adding that there is nothing like the WWE live:
Fink tells (begs, really) Big Country to call him in Lexington, KY next Friday, just to let him know if there's anything for him to do on the show, since Fink can't call back into the show via the fortress-like Stamford phone system.
"We are cheating the fans out of winning a prize on "Outthink the Fink" if I don't get on the air," says Fink.
Big Country says that he will make sure to get Fink on the show next Friday.
The Byte This! team picks the Sacramento Kings over the LA Lakers in Game Seven, setting up a Kings/Nets NBA Finals. (<sob&rt; ... - CRZ)
We close the show with the 1996 "King of the Ring" and the birth of "Austin 3:16," and good Lord, there's Dr. Tom as part of the action!
Gorilla Monsoon and Vince McMahon are supposedly calling the play-by-play, but it sounds like the Spanish Announce Team has the volume turned WAY up.
You know what? They actually do a better job of calling the action!
See you next week.
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