I Get Letters
Not much this week - just a lesson learned - NEVER MAKE MISTAKES. Also, I get more letters when I'm OPINIONATED and PISSY, which I apparently wasn't on Monday. Oh well. ;-)
A few months ago I wrote that I wouldn't be reading you Nitro recapps anymore. This time I am writing to let you know I look forward to your Raw recap... Why? Because Raw was less than average.
Things I'm sure you'll mention: The complete lack of heat/crowd reaction for Test, Al Snow and the Hardyz. Was that a "boring" chant I heard? Yep.
Powers that Be move over, the McMahon-Helmsley Era has taken center stage. So will you be counting how many times they say that? I'm sure thats not a rip-off of the Powers... nah.
And as far as DX not being a rip off of the Outsiders/nWo, I quote the almighty JR, "They're like a Pack of Wolves." I think he means Wolfpack.
John J. Heiser III
Thanks for looking out for me - but you appear to have confused me with another recapper who counts "Powers that Be" mentions...
Subject: Last Night's Nitro
Well, I wonder how many wrestlers are left for WCW to bring out of retirement, with much fanfare, just to have them job to Nash. When Funk was out with Anderson threatening the NWO I was thinking "hey, this might actually turn out to be a good idea.", even while noticing that all of the 'excited' fans had this 'is that Jake the Snake or somebody?' look on their faces. No sooner had I thought this, though, then it occured to me that what would make this angle interesting is if it actually had the effect of making the NWO change it's normal pattern of running in and DQ'ing any interesting match. Well, what the hell was I thinking? This is WCW after all. It should have been obvious to me that this was just ANOTHER set of guys for Nash to powerbomb. After all, that's what the NWO did the last three times it was around, and by God, if it can't do that, they might actually have to drop the old NWO and THINK OF SOMETHING ELSE, and then what would they do with all of those leftover T-shirts, mug holders, baseball hats, etc...
This is an example of one of the classic patterns of WCW's almost insultingly awful writing. Hype the return of some big star, put his debut on opposite the beginning of RAW, and then either 1)job him out immediately to the NWO 2) mire him in some pointless and far-less-than-interesting fued with say, Brad Armstrong 3) set him against some main eventer that can't wrestle with a stipulation that neither man can wrestle unitl the next worthless $30 PPV three weeks from then or, of course 4) do nothing at all with him. It's like WCW is saying to it's fans : "Hey, aren't you excited to see (insert name here) back! Are you ready for his triumphant return? Well, fuck you, you were stupid for thinking that. All you're supposed to want to see is the same 4-on-1 beatdown from the NWO. You don't get off on seeing people spray-painted every week? What's wrong with you?!? You should watch a wrestling show or something if you want to see a wrestling match."
Just my thoughts,
Heya Chris. Enjoy your work, but I think you need to track the amount of times "McMahon-Helmsley Era" is uttered on the RAW broadcast (much in the same way "Powers That/To Be" is tracked. Or, as an alternative, you could track the amount of times JR says "McMahon-Helmsley Air" or "McMahon-Helmsley Error".
I must confess I don't really have the desire to track EITHER of those too carefully.
Subject: (no subject)
Subject: mankind skits
Fuck me if i'm wrong, but it didn't seem like X-pac was playing mankind at all!
I'm pretty sure it was Mideon!
Well, looks like you're not wrong. Too bad - I'm sure I would have loved fucking you! Wait - which gender are you?
Subject: Your reports
Chris, an apology from last week. Your reports are definitely more "positive" and "unbiased" than before. Sorry I didn't mention that. Now, I have a few thoughts of my own regarding last night's shows.
1.) Didn't you just know that Mick Foley (dressed kind of like Cactus Jack) was going to help out the Rock in some fashion? It still kicked ass!
2.) What the hell were David Flair and Crowbar doing in the Nitro main event?
3.) Why the hell was Saturn in the U.S. Rangers if he hates the U.S so much?
4.) How painful did that top of the cage "tilt-a-whirl" look that Al Snow performed on Jeff Hardy in the cage?
5.) How painful did the chair shot administered by Al Snow on Matt Hardy look?
6.) Why didn't WCW appoint Ric Flair commissioner?
7.) I kind of had a "sneaky" suspicion that WCW would maybe appoint Bill Goldberg commissioner, but I guess not...
8.) How over is Ric Flair and the Four Horsemen...still?
9.) Doesn't Daphne have a nice ass?
Subject: DX's Mankind...
My friends and I had looked as closely as we could at the fake Mankind in the "Have a Bad Day" video..... and I'll ask you to look just as closely, because what we saw was something that would make no sense to any storyline, but in real life (after reading Mick's book) it makes perfect sense.
Everyone thinks it had to be X-Pac. Cause it's DX, right?
We don't think it was X-Pac.
We think it was Dennis Knight. Yep, Mideon. Seems that Knight and Foley are pretty good friends... who better to do a parody than one of his good friends? I'm not saying that I can't be wrong.... just that it shouldn't be assumed that it was X-Pac just because it was DX. Fake Mankind had lighter hair than X-Pac... and look at the facial features (the oens the can be seen - eyes especially).... I just don't think it was X-Pac. Knight seems much more like it.
The problem with me making mistakes is I get A LOT of people ready to correct me...
Hey, at least with Crowbar/David Flair as WCW tag champs, Devon Storm finally gets a title. You know, I watch Nitro every Monday, and the problem I see is when watching it, I think things are going to happen and I'm like man that's gonna be cool, this will be cool, and it never does. They do something stupid instead. That's what's wrong with Nitro. Ah well, cool reports man, I enjoy em.
NOW IS THE TIME ON SPROCKETS WHEN WE DANCE! --SNL Comedy Central re-runs rule... Ah hell I have no life. Later man.
Ben Greaney (GlassOnion)
I think "at least Devon Storm finally gets a title" is one weak argument. That's like saying it's okay JUDY BAGWELL wore one of those belts. Hell, it might be the same belt! That said, yeah, I'm happy for Storm. Too bad he had to get it this way...
Subject: where are ????????????????
I was wondering where is hogen,and macho man ?
Eatin' fruit and bein' cool?
Subject: where are?????????
I was wondering where vince and shane are?????????????? I was also wondering where is undertacker, and where are the puppies????????????
What am I, the Shell answer man? I'd look for the first three before the end of the month, and the last two (oops) whenever Austin returns...
Wait...didn't you just write me?
Subject: Mankind wasn't X-Pac
Hey CRZ. For the record, that wasn't X-Pac playing Mankind in those utterly hilarious (sarcasm noted) DX skits. It was Mideon.
I hear we'll see more of Mideonkind on Thursday...
Subject: Quick note on Raw
I'm sure somebody has already told you this, but I figured I'd just make sure you were aware of it.
That wasn't X-Pac playing Mankind in the "Have a Bad Day" skits. It was your favorite wrestler and mine...MIDEON! In his book, Mick mentions what a great impression Dennis Knight does of him, and we've got to admit, he has him down pretty good.
Knight's got some skills on the mike (Do you remember him asking Shane if he could borrow the belt in his suitcase? The underrated classic moment in Raw history.) Maybe this is the angle to get him over--the new Jason Sensation!
Love the recaps...keep it up...
It's said that I read Mick Foley's book and STILL couldn't make the connection without several emails...
Subject: (no subject)
I think I get your sentiment on the David Flair/Crowbar Tag Titles win. When I saw that, I just turned over to RAW, and didn't even watch any more of Nitro (even though that was the end). I mean, DAVID FLAIR and CROWBAR winning the Tag Titles, going up against Triple H vs. Big Show for the World Title on RAW? I really am starting to lack faith in the booking abilities of Russo and Ferrara. To me, Nitro in two hours was almost like, they left in all the bad stuff they said would be cut out in the 2-hour show, and didn't get any of the "better" stuff in. Man, I can't wait to see the ratings, he he.
The ratings are now in - and up on the Nitro and RAW reports!
Subject: NO LIMIT DUDLEY BOYZ
TOO COOL (with Rikishi Phatu) v. NO LIMIT DUDLEY BOYZ
hands aplenty. Off the ropes, big back body drop by Dudley. Boot to the head. Head in the corner, tag to D-Von.
Did you catch that right about here in the match, Buhbuh yelled out Hooty Hoo?
Thumb crosses throat - ahh, *there* is STEVE BLACKMAN - in the ring - looking right at Kane - then cracking the kendo stick ... across the noodle of *Angle*.
Blackman's non-chelant (sp?) way of popping Angle made me laugh too.
Subject: triple h...fired?
Thanks again for a great report.
I got several emails like this, and the only thing I can come up with is...Triple H didn't get a CHANCE to interfere before Rock started laying the smack down on him!
That, or, Triple H is a heel, which makes him a liar. Duh. ;-)
Subject: RAW thoughts...
Two quick things on the RAW report...
1. Was that really X-Pac doing the Foley impersonation in the movie? That's pretty shocking, as I thought "Mankind" was just wearing the normal leather mask (i.e. not covering much of his face)... and that face looked nothing like Waltman's. My friend's first guess was Al Snow... then for some cryptic reason I thought it was Terry Funk, but his appearance on Nitro kinda precludes that. Then we settled on Dennis Knight... c'mon, doesn't that face under the mask look like Phineas I. Godwinn?
2. If Triple H really was "fair", wouldn't he now be fired? He DID interfere in that Handicap "You're Fired" Match... ^_^
Steven Kinne aka Mamono Hunter Stevie
Subject: Hardy Boyz=promo time
Something I forgot to mention...am I the only one that's noticed that EVERY SINGLE TIME the Hardy Boyz make an entrance, it's time for "RAW is brought to you by...."
Ray, you're da man. How come *I* haven't noticed this? You can bet I'll be checking SmackDown! to confirm this theory! (My corollary would be: if the Hardyz aren't booked, it's Too Cool in that slot)
Subject: Chris' Misses
You glossed over the comedic point of the Test match. He walked out without the nose protecter, then when his partners, Mae & Moolah, were announced, he mouthed "oh shit" and THEN in panic, he threw on the mask.
Dramatic nuance, baby.
(Did you ever mention Daphne Unger being Felix Unger's (of the Odd Couple) daughter?)
Subject: MANKIND WAS PLAYED BY MIDEON NOT X-PAC!
Just thought you might want to know that it wasn't X-Pac who played Mankind on Monday, I believe it was Mideon (or Midian, or Midion, or well, who the hell cares how he spells his name, he still sucks). Good job on those recaps, but maybe you could squeeze in an extra paragraph at the end to summarize your thoughts on the show as a whole. You know, like a conclusion. You already have the opening, and the main body, a conclusion would only be fitting.
I like to leave my opinion of the show to the reader - gives them more chance to write me with unfounded accusations of bias. ;-)
Who is the power plant guy you think is going to be the next Rock? Can you describe him for the non-smarts so we may know where the future of WCW may lie?
SONNY SIAKI!!! Well, MAYBE. What can I say? You've gotta watch Saturday Night to see the next Rock!
I thought it was Jason Sensation,myself,but I'm sure he would have have shown up earlier than a year ago...whatever happened to him,anyway?
Sadly, I think his appearances are probably out as he'll unwittingly remind us of Owen Hart. :(
Subject: 1/3/00 Raw
My questions concerns your article on this Monday's Raw. Does the loss by DX mean they THEY are fired since it was a handicap "You're fired" match? After all, the Rock would have been fired had he lost, and the McMahon/Helmsley era has said it wanted to be "fair". Just thinking.
I thought Triple H made it clear that the "fired" stip only applied to Rock.
Subject: Did you notice
last night on Raw during one of the matches Jim Ross said something like "You'll have to take that up with the pow..... uh" and then he changed what he was going to say? I thought that was pretty damn hilarious.
I caught that but failed to note it. Must have been my bias.
Subject: hhh should be fired for being an idiot
was it my mistake or did i hear from hhh that anyone who interfered with the rock's match would be fired. Correct me if i am wrong but he interfered thus he should be fired.
Subject: Nitro report
I really enjoy your weekly NITRO Report, as I am sure you are used to hearing it is better than the actual show. I have been noticing a decline in the amount of your ranting/ commentary in your reports, which is my favorite part of your reports. As much as I've enjoyed Terry Funk over the years the announcement of Funk as WCW Commissioner was as flat as Oklahoma, and I don't mean Ed Ferrara (though strangely the analogy works either way). It almost seems that the various wrestling sites are building up the WCW product out of sympathy pains rather than quality of product. The one thing I've taken out of NITRO over the past several months is just how OVERRATED Russo and Ferrara really were, heck Terry Taylor can claim more responsibility towards booking success than either 'power that (or to) be'!
Anyway, please lash out more often! The report several weeks back where you snapped was your best. Let them have it!
Oh, geez. NOW people are getting on me for being too timid! What's a man to do? ;-)
Subject: Have a Bad Day
Wasn't it Billy Gunn playing B. Dalton? I didn't tape RAW last night, so I could be wrong here, but I seem to remember more of a southern dawl than HHH could pull off.
Now, I'm SURE on this one. That was Triple H every time.
Subject: Profanity on 1/03/00 Nitro.....
I can't believe the great CRZ missed this, but Tony Schiavonne actually said "fuck" on Nitro. I'm dead serious man. As Bret hart and Jeff Jarrett are taking Arn Anderson to the backstage area, Tony says, "This is the price you pay for fucking with the nWo" If you don't believe me, you can check for yourself if you actually taped Nitro. I can't believe the censors didn't catch that.
Jefferson D'Arcy- a reader of CRZ's recaps.
I went back and checked the tape - you can CLEARLY hear Tony say "This is what you get for bucking the NWO..." - hmmm, this is the second time people have accused Tony of dropping the F-bomb when he hasn't. I leave it to you to deduce our reasons for wanting this. ;-)
Subject: Funk? could have been worse
The way the announcers were leading up to the announcement of the commish... "must have an "S" on his chest and wear a cape" etc.... I was VERY worried that Hogan might show up! Can you imagine HOGAN getting his new push started as commish? Thank God that didn't happen!
Subject: The Mankind films
My opinion on who played Mankind is this...they changed it after every segment of the film. The first one was X-Pac, the second one was OBVIOUSLY Al Snow, and I couldn't tell who the third one was, but it looked like he had a fatter face, so yeah, I guess that was Dennis Knight :)
Well, it's a different theory, anyway...
Subject: WWF: Who's fired
I didn't see RAW, so I don't know if the announcers brought this up, but...
Not only are the other three members of DX fired for losing to the Rock, but so is Triple H!
He did say anyone who interfered in the match would be fired, right?
And he did try to interfere, so...
PS: I realize you may have already been bombarded with e-mails pointing this out.
...but you wrote anyway, God bless ya! ;-)
Subject: Something funny on RAW that you missed.
Hey, what's up CRZ? I love your reviews, asskiss asskiss suckup. Kiss ass, compliment. Anyways, assuming you taped it, watch Triple H vs. Big Show, at the point where BS sets Triple H up for a bodyslam outside the ring. HHH slides over the shoulder, BS flips over the railway... and NAILS a security guy in the head with his heel! He ends up holding his forehead for the rest of the match. I didn't notice it until my brother pointed it out. It's hilarious in slow-motion, by the way.
Keep up the kickass recaps, etc.
Subject: Potty Mouth Schiavone?
Dude, I could SWEAR that as Arn was being dragged to the back, right after they cut to the backstage shot, none other than Tony Schiavone said loud and clear, "they're showing what happens when you f*** with the NWO." It sounded awful to me. It was after the "cussing" that you described that Steiner did. Maybe it's just me? Wondering if you can shed some light. Thanks. :)
Yeah, you misheard it. Sorry. Less exciting, but the truth MUST be served!
i've always favored WCW even when i knew they sucked. But after watching WWF and WCW this past Monday, i have to say the WWF is so much more fun to watch. The color and quality is so much nicer. you would think wcw would start out by making their production look as nice as WWF. WCW looks so minor league,plaind and dull. but the main thing that gets me is the wwf is just so much funnier,their skits and all.
wcw just doesnt come across as being funny.
keep up the great updates.
Subject: Chris, I absoluly love your columns.
WCW SUCKS!! they have destroyed everything that was great about their once proud orginazation. as soon as Raw starts, I a 42 year old fan of over 35 years now let them rot! except for Kimona/Leia on the trampoline the entire show stunk up the whole world!! WCW once had the best tag teams, now they don't have any real teams. they had the luchadors, now they're all gone. for what they have done to the Nitro Girls they should be killed, tortured and killed again. WCW was better before the Punks That write Puke took over. they have destroyed their wrestlers, their eye candy, and their entire orginazation. I could write better stuff than this crap with my left foot for a fraction of what they're paying these (there is no word in the English language strong enough to describe the disgust I now have for WCW's direction) I, and all my friends and family no longer watch anymore of WCW than te first hour. even that puke is better than whats on regular tv which isn't saying much. I'll bet that Satan now uses WCW as torment. Nitro Girls and Leia naked are the only thing that can save them now. the Varsity club sucked years ago. the NWO should have been allowed to rest in peace. Funk without Foley is a waste of my time. thankfully, you seem to also can see the the truth. thas why you are my favorite on this board. I knew it was fake 30 years and didn't care, what WCW is now doing though is blasphimy to every longtime fan. regards.
C'mon, Satan? That's a bit much...isn't it?
Subject: Too Cool
Hey CRZ, I really like reading your recaps for Too Cool matches. Especially at the end when you say " Now Is the time on Sprockets when we dance." Reading that makes me as "HAPPY AS A LITTLE GIRL."
u are loosing your ratings because the show sucks every mom and thursday? i been watching this show for 20 yrs and it is getting old
Subject: Monday Musings
Ref Chyna's 'rasslin. Jericho does a good job carrying her but the match last week seemed "off" somehow. I think Chyna's not fast enough. She looked better against HcHolly - but that wasn't much of a match so what can you tell.
A timpani roll brings HOWARD FINKEL to the stage. "Ladies and Gentlemen, D-Generation X proudly presents the epic film 'Have a Bad Day!'" "d-generation X productions / in association with helmsley mcmahon studios / a triple-H film / starring mankind / have a BAD day" A sign says UNEMPLOYMENT OFFICE.
With an unopposed hour they think they can get away with this!
Now STANDARDS & PRACTICES are out, and their accompanying LEGS push Meow off the trampoline and in turn, *they* cover her up with one of their blazers. Sullivan and Rotundo over to play with Lenny & Lodi - err, whatever their names are - apparently Skye will now be known as "Miss Hancock" - snicker - well, in all this the Harris' cover Buzzkill for the 3 following a .... double flapjack, I think. The director can't be bothered to have it take up more than a tiny bit of my TV screen.
The night in miniature. Interesting storylines and amusing skits but the matches were overlooked. For me, the worst Nitro of the Russo/Ferrara era.
The fan criticism on the post-nitro WCWLive was intense! Usually the WCWLive callers have been behind the new direction but not this night. Terry Taylor agreed that there was not enough wrestling but said R&F wanted it that way. There was a significant problem in the second half of the show. According to TT the first Funk segment went SIX minutes too long. That resulted in wrecking the timing of the matches for the rest of the night. (not that the matches were long before that segment)
Meanwhile, LeRoux cleaning house on both Flair and Crowbar - aww, screw the match. DISCO INFERNO is out - BOOKA T. is out - Blackjack crack on Booker T! LeRoux with a nice Frankensteiner, Crowbar landing on Flair, Whiplash on Crowbar - BIG VITO and JOHNNY THE BULL are in the ring and working over LeRoux. Are Crowbar and Flair fighting with each other? Vito with his jumping DDT - the wacky mafia guys are out - oh, TONY MARINARA was around, too - how many people does that make? - Flair is covering LeRoux for some reason, Silverman finally turns around, comes in and counts three.
It's as if they had the same amount of storylines to move along as the three hour show. So they disregarded the matches. With the amount of heat they got on the post-nitro WCWLive I'm guessing they'll be more 'rasslin Thursday & next Monday. (R&F have been pretty responsive to past mass opinions on WCWLive before).
Hey, did you notice during the Y2J-Chyna story, when the match first started and Jericho was talking and complaining about conspiracy theories, Ross started to say, "You'll have to take that up with the Pow-the people in charge"?? A honest slip up, but a funny one nonetheless.
Please, please, please tell me that sometime this year WCW will put forth some effort to restore there tag team situation. The major problem I have with WCW today is there is no continuity. And, god forbid I say this, I respect the WWF for that very same thing. I dont watch WWF very often, im a die hard WCW fan, but they maintain there major components without heel-face changes every other week and dont break up a good thing for fear its getting stale, even when its not. The outsiders, how many times have they wrestled since they reformed(of course, halls injuries have affected that), Harlem Heat(theyre back together for what, 4 months, theyre already fighting, and have had and lost the tag belts at least 3 times. Malnko-Benoit, possibly the best tag team WCW offered in 1999, broken up to put heat on Shane Douglas, Kidman-Mysterio, thrown away to hype other new tag teams, and now who knows what will happen by the time Raymund Stereo comes back. There are others, for sure, but point being, there are no real tag teams in WCW currently. Just factions created for a few weeks or months that are thrown away after that storyline is over. This bothers me the most about WCW, and it will sink them further down the depth charts if it is not fixed soon.
Subject: It sure does
RE: The last line in your column.
It sure does.
Subject: STEVE AUSTIN & THE UNDERTAKER
Hi, I have a couple of questions I know you can answer. Is it true that Steve Austin married Deborah McMichaels (that's one of the reasons she hasn't been around!), and that he will have surgery in the latter part of January? If so, where can a get well card be sent to him?
Also, where is the Undertaker and what is he doing? Is he planning on coming back to WWF?
Watching WWF is not fun any more. I wouldn't let my kids watch it (if they were still little). Are there any plans to cut the dramatic b.s. and have some decent wrestling again? And what of Droz? Any progress?
Thanks, and I hope to hear from you soon.
I haven't actually heard if Austin and Debra have been married or not - I guess we should ask MiCasa. ;-) As for sending a card, you can always send it to the WWF in Stamford, and they'll pass it on. Undertaker - coming soon. Droz - going very slowly, from what I've heard - keep praying for him.
Subject: My Time...
Where did you get your info that HHH's music starts off as My Time instead of 1,2 ? I just don't hear My Time!!! And of course you have cursed me by mentioning it in one of your reports and now i CAN'T stop listening for it!!! But since it plays every other intro it's not a problem!!
Did Debra fall off the face of the earth or what?
Man, EVERYBODY misses Debra! Hunter's song is CALLED "My Time," but I assure you that guy says "1, 2" to start it.
Subject: (no subject)
Since DX is back together what about Shawn Michaels?
What about him? ;-)
Christopher Robin Zimmerman
Letters from last year