|Rollerjam by The Cubs Fan||
Hi. I tried do this recap a week ago, but it didn't go so well, so I kinda ended up putting it off a few days and try again.
This is the last episode of RollerJam - after about two years, TNN has pulled the plug. The weird thing about this episode is, unlike others that pick up where the last one left off, this one seems to be at least 3 weeks after last week's one. Not sure if RollerJam had more episodes but TNN wanted the show to be done on this day and they (either RollerJam or TNN) just decided to air the last episode rather than the next one, or if RollerJam is just being goofy. (Equally likely, don't you know.)
This jump in continuity GREATLY annoyed me when watching this the first time. In some cases, we've already seen part A of the story, but now are already to part C. And there's a couple cases where angles come out of the blue, with no set up that we've seen. Quite frustrating. But why should you have my problems? (You don't want them, trust me.)
For your benefit, and seeing as I've already seen this show once, I've tried to piece together what's happened in the shows that weren't shown, so everything makes sense when it happens later in the show. Hopefully, I'll cover everything - and if you don't like quasi-fantasy booking, just pretend that these are two video packages tacked on the front of the show, okay? It should be noted that there are small hints that this wasn't all completed in two weeks time, and other bits of angles that are just mentioned in passing that I'm going skip over just to make this sane.
Two Week Ago: Kenneth Loge announced a Demolition Derby 2001 All Star Show in two weeks in time, with various races and contests, including the only possible sequel to the Night Gown race from a while back - a Lingerie Race. Fans could vote on RollerJam.com for who they wanted to see. When it was pointed out that this could be the last game for some of the skaters before they go on tour (and maybe the last show RollerJam will be able to have, if they're out a team), Loge got angry. However, instead of his anger going at a proper target (Danny Wolfe), it got diverted towards visiting roller derby legend Ann Calvello. (If you don't know who she is and didn't see her on that E! roller derby special, just think as her of the roller derby equivalent of Fabulous Moolah.) Words were exchange, and Ann KO-ed Loge.
There was an actual game, too, with the Quakes and the Riot meeting to go to the final in the "Lisa Seltzer Tour Tournament." Shockingly, the Riot actually were winning, and winning good in this one for a while - Richard Brown and Ray Robles put their differences aside because they both wanted to win - and with some help from the rest of the Riot, dropped Sean Atkinson through a table (which inspires Loge on another match race he can add), which always helps out. The Quakes start to turn it around in the third period with some unlikely help; after Denise Loden finished her normal lewd interview, she was abducted by a set of familiar look duo of goons. The period went on while guys from both teams went to go save her - and found the Prophet behind it all. They escaped, but not with Denise. The Quakes tied it up going into the last jam, and the game came down to (since I'm booking it) Mo Sanders and Eric Slopey. Neither could take out the other - but Ray accidentally hit Mo with the chili powder, leaving him open to get killed by Sean. Slopey skated through for the win. Richard was put through a table afterwards.
One Week Ago: The tournament final, though there's still some off the track junk: Ann and Loge agree to a match race, if the fans vote for it. As an added assurance that they'll win, the Dice sign Bill Barker (Barker ending up on the team he started with, though never skated for.) Everyone but the Dice realize what a bad idea this. The Prophet shows up to say that Lingerie Race won't happen next week - the Prophet is told that he'll be put in the penalty cage so he won't be able to stop it.
There's not too much of the actual game that's noteworthy for us now, with the focus being around the Quakes big four (Sean/Slopey/Stacey Blitsch/Jamie Conemac) versus the Dice big four (Mark Weber/Jason McDaniel/Shay Brown/Jenny Matthews). It's an equal battle, equal enough that we go to overtime. As usual, no one's quite sure what they're doing for overtime - Sean, Mark and Lisa work out a deal - a match race between Eric Slopey and Jason McDaniel, but McDaniel's Jammer Belt is on the line, winner takes all. Slopey does win the race, getting the belt and making the Quakes the team that gets the tour shot. Sean reminds Lisa that he's not going unless all the teams go, Lisa says she doesn't have enough money to do that, Loge interrupts and points out if Lisa and Loge worked together, they'd be able to put all the teams in the tour, and everyone would end up happy. So that's what they do. And everyone IS happy (well, Jason's a little down about losing that belt) - and ready to go on tour. Just one more game to take care of...(and from here on, we're back to what I actually saw, not what I'm guessing)
Demolition Derby 2001
Open: "Tonight it's the end of the RollerJam world." They mean "as you know it", in the context of the show, but with a little wink. Five match races - with the people you (and by you, they mean "what we think you would have done") voted for.
Hey, look at Rory Markus and Marc Loyd at the announcers both. Now, look at some assorted clips - must've been from the last few weeks.
Danny Wolfe talks to Kenneth Loge: He thanks the fans for selecting the lineups. No problem. Time for the first race
Jammer Belt Race: Eric Slopey (CAL, champion) vs Jason McDaniel (NV) vs Brian Krebs (CAL) vs Mo Sanders (IL) vs Tom Smith (CAL) vs Christian Saliva (IL)
Slopey comes out with the belt, and that's a cool image. What, Travis Wills has something better to do and we can't squeeze him in here? Where's Jason Bechstein? Commercial break, so we can remember Brian Gallagher and Tony Santiago being on the Quakes too, and think about just how many jammers they've had there.
Danny Wolfe holds the Jammer's Belt and explains the rules to us: They'll be eight laps. Starting with the fourth lap, the last person across the line is eliminated. Last person left takes home the belt.
This is tough to call, so I'm just going to hit the highlight of each lap, one we get to the elimination. The announcers want us to notice the three Quakes in there - there you go. Everyone starts really bunched up, but things start to spread apart around the third lap. Jason and Mo are the two in the lead, and it looks like Tom Smith is the last as they come down the stretch. No, wait, the Quakes decide that they want to be 3 Count - Triple assisted bulldog on Saliva, dropping him before the line. Mo might have actually been trying to turn around and help his teammate there - nah. He doesn't get up in time, so he's gone. Brian Krebs is slow to catch up the pack after dropping Christian, and never does, so he's gone. Everyone bunches back up, and Mo appears to last the next time around, but that's not the story we want so Tom Smith is out. It was close, but still. Slopey and Jason remember that they (and everyone else) don't like Mo - I guess you could call that a double Rocker Dropper. Both Mo and Slopey end up off the track, but Slopey gets back on and across the line. That leaves Jason vs Eric. They battle each other around the line - Jason almost getting a headlock as they go down the backstretch, but Mo shows up with a lunging hipblock that hits - Eric, because Jason moves out of the way. Jason is your new champion (1:28) for the third time. Only Mo knows who he was going for there.
Your Winner: Jason McDaniel
Danny Wolfe says this is Jason's third time winning, and Jason's happy the fans voted in.
Nine Woman Demolition Derby
Danny Wolfe explains the rules for this one - we start with 2 people (helpfully, Amy Craig (IL) and Jamie Conemac (CAL) are already out), every 20 seconds, a new person comes out. To be eliminated, you must be thrown over the top rail or be in the infield for three seconds. Danny doesn't say that you're supposed to keep skating around the track, but the skaters seem to do that anyway. Jamie is pumped. Amy is relaxed. Amy knocks Jamie down, as we remember Denise won this last year. Amy mocks Jamie. The horn is late (:23) but Laura Weintraub (IL) is out to help Amy - or at least we think. Jamie tries to avoid them, but she gets run into the rail. Stacey Blitsch (CAL) is in (:44) and she should even things up. Well, if she decides not to pose on the stage and come help Jamie. There, that's better. Amy gets pushed down, then pushes Jamie. Laura touches the infield, but only for a second. Jenny Matthews (NV) is out, and still no one's eliminated. (1:06) It's getting hard to follow, with five people skating around - no, Jamie, that doesn't mean you can eliminate Amy - AWW PHOOEY. (1:22) That's it, this is the last show I'm recapping. Lindsey Francis (NY) shows up (1:26) but I'm too sad to care. Laura and Jenny team up Jamie, throwing her on to the stage - I guess that counts. (1:33) Skating around, not much happening till Denise Loden (IL) (1:46) is out. Denise skates through the infield and almost gets eliminated - Stacey (with some outside help from Jamie) eliminates Laura (1:58). Telisa Miller (NY) is out, (2:09) surprisingly with a trash can lid. Yet. Telisa goes after Jenny, but doesn't get her over. Stacey and Lindsey are trying to push each other out. Shay Brown (NV) is the last woman out (2:29), and Telisa probably was the infield for three seconds there. Close up of Stacey getting pushed over the rail by Lindsey, so she's gone (2:42) The refs are getting very loud with the three counts, as Denise chokes Lindsey with something. Telisa comes over with a trash can, and - puts it on Lindsey's head? It's everyone for themselves, or Telisa's still angry about that whole Rustlers thing. Telisa and Denise play kick the can. Meanwhile, Shay and Jenny fight, but get no where. Lindsey is dumped by Denise and Telisa (3:12) and she's not happy about it. Denise celebrates - but Telisa has the trash can and hits Denise in the back of the head with it, knocking her out as well. (3:18) Lindsey and Denise fight - Stacey skates over, to join in or break it up, I dunno. Jenny and Shay are still fighting. Shay with a headlock, leading Jenny right into Telisa's Rack, and Telisa dumps her over the rail. (3:39) Amy and Laura looked on, surprised. (About Shay turning on her teammate? Shay making it this far? Shay and Telisa winning?) Final two, Telisa grabs Shay by the hair, and tries to toss her over the rail - Telisa almost goes over herself, but holds on; Shay does go over, and Telisa's your winner. (3:55)
Danny Wolfe points out that Telisa finished second last year, but first this year. "When I'm on the track, I kick ass and take names later. That's why I'm the champ." And then she brains Danny with the microphone. "Back to your Rory and Marc!"
The Battle of the Sexes - Ann Calvello vs Kenneth Loge
Ann's wearing an ARDL New York Demons jersey, hmm. To drive home the comparison I made earlier, Danny says that (he thinks) Ann will be the first professional athlete to participate in seven straight decades. Ann needs a little help from Danny to get from the stage to the infield. Loge has an elaborate introduction was the ninth best goalie (3.44 GAA) in the 1977 Ivy League...hmm. This is two laps, which is probably best for everyone involved. Ann pulls on Loge's jersey and pulls him back twice, but Loge keeps catching back up. Loge is in the lead, but gets kicked in the right leg, knee to the back of the leg, and Loge is down. Ann wins. (:30)
Danny congratulates Ann - Ann thanks her fans, new and old. Loge just wants to be left alone.
Table race - Jason McDaniel (NV) vs Brian Gamble (IL) vs Mo Sanders (IL) vs Ray Robles (IL) vs Travis Wills (NY) vs Mark Weber (NV)
Rules: Four laps, first one across the line wins. However, there's two tables set up on the track - you can go over, around, under, just hopefully not through. Mo says "I might have to go over, I might have to go under, I can go around, but no matter what, everything goes through Mo Sanders." They start, battling as much as they're skating. Ray and Brian break away quick, opting to slide underneath the first table, the other four successfully going over the top. As we get to the second table (just in front of the line) Gamble turns around and seems to want to backdrop Weber through. Unfortunately, Ray bumps and knocks over the table, so all Weber crash lands head and shoulder first on the track. Things start to resemble a car crash, with bodies all around, then picking themselves back up. Off camera, Gamble and Robles through Travis off the track, while McDaniel and Weber try to do the same to Mo. The Riot teammates break that up, with Weber, Mo and Brian all skating on. All three leap over the table, and that's 2 laps. All three jump the first table (Mo has to slow up to do it). Robles is waiting to knock down Weber, but that misses, and Mo crashes into Jason on his way, but recovers. The three that are still on the lead lap get bunched together near the second table, with Gamble accidently knocking the table over after being pushed. Mo and Weber fight as Gamble skates on (past Travis, who is watching from outside the track now.) As he approaches the last table, Gamble ops to turn around and try for an Air Ninja - Mo and Weber catch him in mid-air, and it's a double spinebuster through the table. Down to two alive, Weber skating in front of Mo and turning around. Weber grabs Mo - Falcon Arrow drop through the second table. That'll do it. Weber breaks the tape and wins. (1:32) Weber celebrates. Mo holds his injured parts. Weber says the move he used on Mo is "Table Break Mo Sanders' Head", okay.
Coming up next, the Lingerie match - Stacey Blitsch (almost clotheslined by Ray Robles - Stacey laughs) and Shay Brown are shown, ready to go.
Lingerie race - Stacey Blitsch (CAL) vs Jamie Conemac (CAL) vs Denise Loden (IL) vs Lindsey Francis (IL) vs Shay Brown (NV) vs Laura Weintraub (IL)
Rules: This is just like the men's jammer match, but they're wearing different clothes. Yep. Everyone gets an introduction and a lap to show off their outfit. It's tough picking a favorite. Rory: "The important thing is that we treat all of this ladies with respect, as well as our female viewers." Danny tells us to make sure we're recording. The Prophet is out to cover up Lindsey Francis, but he's dragged off and thrown in the cage. They all give Danny a kiss. Everyone's lining up - uh oh, we have a last minute substitution here, as Telisa Miller hits Jamie with the garbage can lid, takes off her shawl, puts it on, and enters the race. Um, sure, why not. Stacey doesn't seem to like that, but Lindsey offers a high five. Telisa's the only one wearing a helmet. Rory: "Half of our audience is unconscious, but that doesn't matter." I'd explain how we got to that line, but still. Jamie is kinda pushed off the track, and just realizes what's going on a little too late. One lap, and no real leader. Still bunched on lap two - but Jamie's back with the lid, and she smacks Telisa. Jamie gets her clothes back and leaves. Lap three isn't that interesting, and Jamie's officially out of the match as we finish lap four. Shay Brown is barely out after five, as Jamie and Telisa argue. Lindsey gets in a elbow on Laura right before the line, so she's gone after six laps. Lindsey edges Stacey out the next time around, so we're down to the last two. Remember when they were teammates? No, okay. Denise pulls Lindsey down by the hair and crosses first for the win. (1:23) Loden felt warm and tingly after winning. Another kiss for Danny.
Men's Demolition Derby
Rules: 14 men in this match, so we start with four (yet to be introduced) and every 14 seconds, a new person comes in. Eliminations can only happen by going over the top. And our first four are: Sean Atkinson, Bill Barker (listed as Quakes on the chryon, wearing Dice), Chad Vaughn, "The King" Richard Brown (w/briefcase). The King tells us he will win. Sean was disappionted the fans didn't vote him into the Table match but is told he got the most votes ever for any race in this one. There's the whistle and Richard brings his briefcase with him - shot for Sean. Brown lunges at Vaughn and both go over. Richard (:20) looks like he wasn't supposed to go over with Vaughn (:21). As Weber hipchecks Sean, Eric Slopey (:24) joins the match. They both throw Weber out (:34), under the rail, and skate around to wait. For a second, I think we're going to see a replay of the initial rules segment, but no. They stop skating and turn around when Jason McDaniel (:44) comes out - revenge for Slopey? Jason gets the bet of a Collision with Slopey, but then gets a Back Attack. Sean Davidson is out (1:04) and over to help his teammate, knocking down Sean. Slopey tries to skate away , but Davidson gets a hold of him for a Rail biter. Ray Robles (1:26) takes his time skating out, while Jason goes for another Rail Biter but Atkinson pushes him over. (1:35) Davidson tries to drag Slopey and throw him over, but Atkinson hits him with a trashcan and he falls over (1:46) Ray is over and throws chili powder at both Quakes just as Brian Gamble joins (1:48) - doesn't look good for the Quakes. Ray goes for the trash can and hits Sean with it. Slopey is eliminated at the same moment Pasi Schalin joins (2:10), so it remains two Riot versus two Quakes. Gamble with a jumping knee for Sean, and then a kick to the knee. Pasi is finnaly over and deposits Gamble on our cameraman, (2:30) and Tim Washington is next (2:32). Ray gets slammed, but then Tim gives Pasi a big shoulderblock. Ray with chili powder for Tim, as Pasi stands on a speaker outside the track for no reason. Tim manages to see this, pushing Pasi out (2:58) and Mark D'Amato is in (2:59). Tim goes after Ray, and Ray holds on to the rail for dear life. Mark Weber is in (3:15) as Tim pulls of Ray's left skate. Weber knocks down Atkinson then goes after D'Amato. Instead of pulling him off the rail, Tim just decides to push Ray over, and over he goes. (3:36) Falcon Arrow on Mark D'Amato! That'll work. Mo Sanders is the last person in this (I think) at 3:37. Chair shot for Atkinson. Here's another one from Weber. Weber charges at Tim for one, but Tim just drops down and Weber goes over and out of the track (4:06). Tim and Mark try to give Sean a double suplex, but he keeps blocking it, Mo's over to break it up. Tim looks at Mo, Mo realizes what he just did and takes off. And around they go, Mo cutting around the infield but gets steered right into an Eliminator from D'Amato, flipping Mo to the outside. (4:38) Enforcers formulate strategy, but not good enough as Sean knocks down Mark. They both get up, and Big Nasty throws a trash can at Sean's head. Tim pulls him up, but the Enforcers are two tired and D'Amato accidentally hits Tim with it. Sean knocks down Mark, then D'Amato, the D'Amato, then Tim (over the trash cans.) Now Sean has a can, both Enforcers charge at him and Sean flips both of them over. (Tim 5:43, Mark 5:45)
Sean started out and was the last man in. And here's so more for Mark. This is one of the greatest moments in his skating life. Sean takes a victory lap. Here's some replays. Rory tells us to come back, next time. And that's it.
I want to say something big and grand about how that even thought it was just a TV show and definitely not perfect, it was something that was really cool for what is was, and it will be missed. But I can't find the perfect way to say that I'll miss everything on the show. Not just the stuff I bragged and went on and on about (though I will ever so miss Amy), but even the stuff that annoyed the crap out of me, because I rather be annoyed by it then never see it. Even D'Amato. (Well, maybe.)
I hope, since they won't be entertaining me on a weekly basis anymore, that the people who worked on this show get to find something else interesting to do. (Hopefully that I can see.) In that vein, I should pass along a link to the another roller derby league - www.baycitybombers.com. If you check those rosters, you might see a familiar name or two.
Thanks to people for putting on the show, and thanks to you for putting up with the recap, where ever you might have found it. Now, it's time for all of us to find something else to do...
The Cubs Fan
Comment about this article on the EZBoard