|WWF Byte This! by E.C. Ostermeyer
This is the WWF Byte This! report for Friday 9 August 2001, and I'm E.C. Ostermeyer at the controls and hopped up on goof-'n balls.
On today's show, Droz won't come out of his house, Tazz won't give and inch, and the WCW Divas tell Howard Finkel he can have both of them.
Opening cred...er, no, we've got a "Pulp Fictionalized" photomontage of Stacy Keibler back in her old WCW days, dancin' in her Ms. Hancock outfit.
And now, the abbreviated
Your hosts are Kevin Kelly and Howard Finkel.
The Byte This! set is emblazoned with a large red "WCW" logo on a black background.
Kelly says that two of the best parts of the enemy camp are today's guests on Byte This!
Kelly gives a big shout out to Byte This! fan Christine who's watching the show on a high-speed hookup at some strip club somewhere.
Fink gives Kelly a look.
On to the upcoming SummerSlam PPV.
The battle. Stone Cold vs. Kurt Angle. The Anger! The Animosity! The ankle breaking attempts on both sides. Anxiety in both the WWF and Alliance camps over a possible WWF World Title change.
Kelly says that Angle appears to have snapped a link in his bike chain, after the week he's put in.
Next up, The Rock vs. Booker T. The Anger. The Animosity! The...aw, skip it. Same Anxiety, but here it's over the WCW World Heavyweight Title.
No matter, big SummerSlam preview's ready to go for next week's show. All the news, the facts, the rumors, the... well, okay, the out-and-out falsehoods cooked in a nice flaky pastry crust and served with a side order of bullshit with gravy.
If you can't wait, go check out summerslam.com for the info but without Kelly and Fink telling you about it.
There's a big grudge charity softball game this Saturday at Shea Stadium with the Alliance taking on the WWF. A number of celebrities will also be Playin' Wit' da Big Boyz. (Though if they are who I think they are Tazz and the Alliance would be better served employing them in the "mine clearance" and "human wave attack" roles. Hey, somebody's gotta cull that herd!)
(BTW, the softball game is to help the families of NYC firefighters who lost their lives at a fire on one horrendous Father's Day. Pony up, you Big Apple folks, it's for a damn good cause!)
Then, on to Uniondale, and the Nassau County Coliseum for the "Too Bad to Broadcast" house show. Which appears to be shaping up to be a preview of SummerSlam, with Kurt Angle facing Steve Austin ("Cast vs. Cast" match, anyone?) and the Rock vs. Booker T. Let's hope the Uniondale crowd shows a little more life this time around.
The Pillman Memorial was a great show, raising over $42K for Miz Pillman and the kids. On a sad note, Dean Malenko grabbed a microphone (no, THAT'S not the sad note!) and hung up his boots, saying that he wanted to become a teacher now.
Saturday also has a great "Legends of Wrestling" show in Birmingham, AL, as a memorial for the late Terry Gordy. Fellow Freebird and current WWF "Jakked" announcer Michael PS Hayes will team with Gordy's son, Ray in a match as part of a fundraiser for Miz Gordy and the kids.
Byte This! also added a scorcher of a video shoot that Torrie Wilson did, which should be up on the site by the time you read this.
Time for "Droz's Two Cents," Darren Drozdov's weekly review of the happenings in the WWF.
Droz has apparently not been out of the house owing to the hot weather they've been having in the northeast. However, this has not stopped him from being as opinionated as ever.
Droz agrees with the WWF.com reader poll that has the Rock taking the WCW World Heavyweight Title from Booker T at SummerSlam, though the card should read "The Rock vs. Booker T/Shane McMahon." One-on-one, The Rock could take the Title from Booker T. with Shane added to the mix, no way. Droz says that The Rock looks better now than he's ever had, and was the first person he saw at the Raw show in Philly last week. Something else that Droz is impressed with is The Rock's apparent quickness, which should give him even more of an advantage.
Kelly asks Droz about Test's defection to the Alliance, to which Droz responds that Test really had no chance. The Alliance set their sights on him, beat him down, and brought him over. Shane McMahon saw an opportunity with Test, and took it. It was a good move for Test, but Droz isn't sure how long he will remain loyal to the Alliance. Fink remarks that the manpower losses seem to be running against the WWF lately, what with them losing Steve Austin, Ivory, and now Test, and getting no Alliance members to cross over to their side.
Kelly thinks they could get Shawn Stasiak, which causes both Fink and Droz to snicker. Droz once asked Stasiak what that was printed on his wrestling trunks, and was told that it was "Mecca."
Kelly invokes the spirit of "Pee Wee's Funhouse" by intoning "Mecca Lecca High, Watchyer Hiney Grow!"
Droz says that it isn't important, and Kelly says yeah, it's usually covered by the canvas anyway, which gets a laugh.
("Mecca refers to Stasiak's last angle in the old WCW, where he teamed with Stacy Keibler, and was known as the 'Mecca of Manhood.' Still sounds as lame now as it did then.)
Fink asks Droz who he'd like to see come over from the Alliance, at which point Kelly interrupts, telling Droz to put Stone Cold on the side, howza 'bout Stacy Keibler, and holds up this month's WWF Magazine gatefold for Mr. Cameraman to have a look. There's Stacy Keibler herself, with Keibler's celebrated long legs taking up the bottom two thirds of the gatefold.
Now THAT'S impressive!
Droz, the killjoy, says they don't need the women. They need power, and he's got three choices in mind, though he can't be specific right now. They'd have to be approached carefully, maneuvered into situations and checked out. Kelly says that Fink might be jumping ship as the new WCW announcer. Fink says no way, and Droz says that it couldn't be because Fink's the first employee ever hired by the WWF.
Kelly gets in a plug of Droz's column, and Droz adds that a good deal of it will be devoted to the ongoing national debate over stem cell research, which has a special meaning for his personal situation, he will talk about that too, and so long 'til next week.
Time for "Outthink the Fink."
Fink's been getting complaints that his questions have been too easy, so he's cooked up a doozy this week.
The Event: SummerSlam 1993
The Place: Palace of Auburn Hills, Michigan.
The Principals: Yokozuna vs. Lex Luger.
The Situation: Leading up to this bout, a bus caravan was sent cross- country on a promotional tour to hype both the match and Lex Luger. The caravan was known as the "Lex Express. "
(Not, "The Aimless Cannonball?")
A song was written about Lex Luger, and a music video was shot to go with it.
(Look, I can hear you all laughing out there, cut it out, can't ya?)
Fink wants to know what the name of the song was?
Kelly thinks it couldn't have been "Road to Nowhere," by the Talking Heads, which cracks up Fink.
(I can just imagine what a cross-country bus tour with Lex Luger must have been like! "Hell on Earth" springs to mind.)
Time for Tazz and "Tales From the Hook." Kelly insults Tazz by remarking that it was good to see him and (Michael) Cole sitting in their little chairs again on Smackdown.
Tazz, of course, fires right back about Kelly's known bias against the Alliance, and says he'd expect as much from a WWF kiss-ass like Kelly.
Kelly won't play today, and says that Tazz was just mad the chair wasn't orange, oops, that's YOUR line, isn't it, heh, heh?
Talk shifts to the match between Kurt Angle and Steve Austin, and Austin's near-Pillmanizing of Angle's ankle.
Tazz said that Angle told Debra that he was out to break Stone Cold's ankle, and it looked like Austin struck first, is all!
(Angle's ankle is okay, gentle readers. It's all a work!)
Kelly moves on to Rock/ Booker T, and the poll where the fans predict that the Rock will win the WCW Title.
Tazz calls the WWF fans robots, that they've been programmed to think that way. The match could go either way, and that there will be plenty of verbal fireworks involved.
Fink remarks about the two feds' respective Tag Titles changing not only hands but feds last night on Smackdown.
(New WCW Tag Title holders, Undertaker & Kane meet the new WWF Tag Title holders, DDP and Kanyon in a Cage Match at SummerSlam.)
Fink asks about the recent defections this week from the WWF to the Alliance, Test and Ivory.
Tazz says that Test has all the tools to become a huge star in the Alliance. Back in the WWF, he'd been lost in the shuffle, and passed over. Now, with the Alliance behind him, Test has finally gotten his opportunity to step up and become a major superstar in his own right.
Kelly snickers about Ivory joining up; saying that Tazz gets to listen to her voice keeping everybody awake by talking.
Tazz demurs, saying that Ivory's a great addition, that she will help WCW Divas Torrie Wilson and Stacy Keibler to get over, both as Divas and as wrestlers. The target will be the WWF Women's Championship Title.
Talk shifts to this week's "Tough Enough," and Kelly wants to know who has the Kleenex contract for that show?
"Every time somebody gets hurt, or somebody leaves, on goes the waterworks! What gives, Tazz?"
Tazz says that he's like everybody else; an emotional person, a person who has compassion for other people. But, there's a time and a place for everything! There's too many tears being shed on the show for Tazz's liking, and Tazz don't give out hugs when it comes to the wrestling business.
"There's a time when a young athlete needs the mental and emotional support of a older veteran," says Tazz, "but NOT this early in the game! I am not gonna rub somebody on the ass and say (switches to 'baby-talk' voice): 'Don' worr-eee. Evey-ting be oh-tayyy.'
Shut up, suck it up, get it done, or get out! Period!"
Kelly remarks that his wife said almost the exact same thing, and that the "Tough Enough" Crew is proving to be decidedly NOT tough enough!
Tazz says one good thing the show is doing is showing the fans how tough the ring (work) can be on people. These people are having some serious physical problems with the training's wear and tear. Little injuries are becoming big injuries? Wear and tear is doing it. The Crew had better heed Matt Hardy's closing remark that, as far as being hurt, the Hardy Boys are hurting ALL THE TIME. You just learn to rise above the hurt, and find a way to beat it.
"Being injured and being hurt are two different things," says Tazz, "If you are hurt, suck it up and keep going. Greg, Paulina, they're pretty tough kids, and I wish the show would tell more about why they got injured as they did. But, there's that damned thirty-minute time frame again! So much is happening that they just can't show it all in thirty minutes. I still think there's too much hugging going on!"
Kelly tries for the fishhook question, asking Tazz if Al Snow brought too much hugging to the "Tough Enough" set?
Tazz won't bite, and says that Snow is a professional, and a damned nice guy!
Discussion shifts to Saturday's charity softball game. Tazz says the Red Hook Lumber Company is bringin' da gloves an' batz, but they don't have 'em yet. Looks like Tazz and some "friends" are gonna have to go down to the batting cages and stand around. (Uh oh...)
Fink says that he likes the WWF's chances, what with having Albert on their team.
Tazz snorts in disbelief.
Fink reminds Tazz that, in a charity game two years ago, Albert hit not one, but two over the fence and the fence was 330 feet away.
Kelly says that the fans expect violence at a softball game at Shea, and Tazz rejoins that there's NOTHING like violence at a charity softball game.
(Background noise at Tazz's end has Tazz's kids cackling at a Goofy cartoon. Tazz watches Goofy cartoons?!)
Kelly tries to wind up the show, but Tazz stops him. Fink then promos Tazz's new WWF/Stacker 2 commercial that he's just done.
" It was awesome! We shot it here in the Hook," says Tazz, pride evident in his voice, "me and some guys from the neighborhood. Plus, we got somebody BIG from "The Sopranos," I don't wanna say any names, right in the Hook, right in Brooklyn, that's all I'm gonna say. But the Sopranos' goombah and Yours Truly are gonna be on a Stacker 2 commercial in the next few weeks."
"Don't tell Paul E. he'll get really jealous!" says Kelly, "he's a huge "Sopranos" mark! He'll be hot!"
Tazz laughs. "Ehhh, whatcha gonna do? Maybe he won't let me drink da Kool-Aid tomorrow."
"What's up next week in "Tales from the Hook?" asks Fink.
"We're gonna talk about the ass-whipping the WWF got at Shea Stadium!' laughs Tazz, and he leaves the show.
Clip of the new movie "Bubble Boy" is shown, that has Kelly and Fink laughing fit to bust over it.
Stacy Keibler joins the show, and talks about her (sounds like a bit) part that she had in the movie, that of a mud-wrestling stripper.
Kelly says that "Bubble Boy" seems to be a romantic movie, and what's the most romantic thing anyone has ever done for her?
Stacy ponders a bit, then says, "Oh, I don't know, I've been taken on trips, and stuff like that..."
Kelly says he's acting as factotum for Howard Finkel who can't talk right now because the spittle catcher in his bib just overflowed from staring at Keibler's gatefold in WWF Magazine.
"How about flowers?" asks Kelly, "Candy?"
"Make it a trip," says Keibler with a laugh, " because Howard can book it for me!"
Things settle down, and Keibler says she's tickled to be a part of the WWF. "The difference between the WWF and the old WCW is night and day. I can imagine how WCW lasted as long as it did. From a production end, the office buildings, and the professionalism, it's night and day. I hurt my ankle the other day, and I got calls from everyone here. Its things like that that makes the big difference. Everyone cares about the talent, and everyone backstage is supportive, no egos or anything!"
In addition, Keibler is excited to be back on TV, AND wrestling.
Kelly says that even Jim Ross said something about Stacy's sore ankle in the Ross Report, then asks if Keibler really wants to get more physical on the wrestling side, or stay in the less-combative support role?
Keibler says it's important to her to be well rounded on everything, and to be able to take bumps and get physical, as she told Jim Ross during her switchover interview. "It can only help me by my doing more," she says, "If I was just a cheerleader, that would be all I would be doing. I love what I'm doing. I had a ball in that "Bra and Panties" Tag Match (at "Invasion") We've got a great women's locker room in the WWF, everybody's so supportive."
Torrie Wilson joins the show. Fink's drool bib needs changing again, and Kelly says Fink's switched from Stacy to Torrie.
Keibler says hey, why can't Howard have both of them at the same time?
Fink nearly faints dead away at the prospect.
Kelly holds up on Torrie for a moment, and asks Keibler what's up with the dirty look (WWF ring announcer) Lilian Garcia gave you on Raw behind your back when you got in the ring?
Keibler sighs, and says that Garcia's got a grudge from when Keibler did the in-ring announcer job one night in Garcia's place. "I gave her a little run for her money."
Fink recovers his composure long enough to say that Keibler did an outstanding job, and if she ever wants a ring announcer's job, go for it!
"Stephanie told me afterwards," says Keibler, "that I beat her out on the high-pitched voice in that performance!"
Kelly asks Torrie about her thoughts on coming into "this crazy wrestling business" from a fitness experience, and what her thoughts were on transferring from fitness to sports entertainment?
"I had never really watched wrestling before I made the move," says Wilson, "coming in to the business was a huge shock."
(Chyron shows excepts from Wilson's video shoot, and Keibler's photo shoot.)
Kelly asks about how the rewards have differed vis-à-vis fitness and sports entertainment?
Torrie had been to Los Angeles to pursue an acting career, prior to her joining WCW. "I love the crowds, and the photo shoots are great!" she says.
Keibler's background was by way of her being a dancer, and then a Baltimore Ravens' cheerleader. She started out as a WCW Nitro Girl, and then assumed the in-ring role of Ms. Hancock.
Keibler is excited to be in the WWF and wrestling now.
Kelly asks what it means to be a WWF performer?
Wilson says that her opportunities are endless, and that the attention to detail prior to a match is amazing. "If they have a two minute match," says Wilson, " they'll spend hours going over it, just to get it right!"
Kelly asks about their support team.
Wilson names Fit Finlay, Ricky Santana, Lance Storm, Molly Holly, and Lita. "We learn as we go," says Wilson, " and we grab for all the ring time we can. With all the different styles, it's hard to learn from everyone at once, but everyone is helping add those little extra bits that will all help out."
Kelly tosses out the fishhook again, and asks if they, as budding WWF megastars, have learned from other WWF Divas who got too big for their britches, or seen their aspirations, ummm, "wander."
Keibler responds for both Wilson and herself, saying that you have to remember where you came from and how you got there, and that everybody is replaceable. "What I am doing now "could" lead to other things," says Keibler, "But this is how you get your foot in the door."
Wilson says that she's been in the entertainment industry before, but that she's been bitten by the wrestling bug.
"I'm having way too much fun to worry about going somewhere else, or trying something else," says Wilson. "How can you get bored with that?"
Kelly asks their thoughts about Ivory jumping to the Alliance this week.
Keibler says that Ivory is the right person for them to be with, because of her work ethic and her personality. "You could see she was excited to be back on Raw."
Kelly says that Ivory's not known to be one to hide her emotions, and that she was excited to be back in the rotation, working with Keibler and Wilson, and getting new story lines.
"Speaking of story lines, Torrie, " wheedles Kelly, "what about that one involving you getting to make out with the multi-zillionaire, Vince McMahon on national television? Vince was on Byte This! a while back, and had nothing but good things to say about the experience, too. Other than being caught by his wife with his pants down, that is."
(In the background, Fink's breathing is becoming labored and hoarse.)
Wilson laughs then replies that she had asked Trish, whom she had known before, what it was like to kiss Vince, not knowing that SHE would be kissing Vince later.
Kelly checks on Fink, whose respiration seems to have settled down.
Reality TV gets the nod once more, as Kelly asks the WCW Divas their thoughts on "Tough Enough."
Wilson says that it has been tough on the girl contestants.
"Every time they cry," she says, "I look over at Billy, and I say I feel for them."
"Billy?" asks Kelly. "Billy who? Billy GUNN? Billy Idol?"
This gets a laugh from everybody, and then Torrie asks how many hours a day the Crew is training?
Keibler says she has it easier than the "Tough Enough" crew does, and is glad for the opportunity that has been given to her. "But it is only going to pay off in the end for them," she says, "It's not often that the pros actually get to train you to get in the business."
Kelly remarks that what we are seeing is a bunch of whiners, despite the "emotion" side of things that MTV is portraying.
"What do you think of the two girls who left at the beginning, ladies?" asks Kelly.
Wilson says that she knew that Bobby Jo was gone because all she wanted was to get into Playboy. Why beat yourself up if you don't have it? Keibler says that all they were going to do was either hurt themselves or somebody else, if they don't have what it takes.
Ivory joins the show at this point, and it's phone hugs all around for the WCW Divas.
Ivory is enthused about being part of the Alliance because there is hope; youth, from Shane and Stephanie; and newness of purpose.
The WWF was a rude, lewd bunch of people. With the Alliance, there's athleticism and truth, as portrayed by their champion, Booker T. Sure there are some misfits, but the WCW Divas are the best.
Kelly gets in the needle about Ivory being hypocritical, seeing as how both Torrie and Stacy have bared all, at one time.
Ivory has no problem with that; she's bared all, too.
What she had the problem with was them getting tossed from man to man, being made into sexual objects. But with the Alliance, they have the opportunity to become superstars in their own right. So, why not be the best at what they do? Why not become Champions? By being more than just a pretty face, your worth to the company increases, and you get the interesting things to do. Once you are Women's Champion, you have a say in your destiny, and you can give something back to the industry that helped you get where you are.
"But if you don't learn how to do it the right way the first time around, " says Ivory, "you'll keep making the same mistakes, and wind up being the girlfriend of some slob."
About the collapse of "Right To Censor," Ivory says that Steven Richards dumped both her and RTC over a woman. Steve fell in love, and "the woman" was all he thought about. "One day, I asked him, point-blank, 'where is your focus?"
"Call the papers!" hollers Kelly; "Steve Richards lost his virginity! You heard it first on Byte This!"
Meanwhile, Fink's laughing fit to bust at this revelation of Ivory's.
Ivory concludes by saying that it was Steve's lustful ways that broke up the RTC.
Kelly says that Fink was after Stacy at the start of the show, but then switched to Torrie. "Any advice you want to give Howard, Ivory?"
Ivory says that Fink will be a big fan of the WCW Divas, because he's been a big fan of all the ladies of the WWF, and great support for Ivory, too.
Fink says that he's heard rumors the Ivory wants to make their group a perfect three, and asks if Ivory intends to dye her hair blonde?
Keibler says no; they don't want her to change her hair color.
Ivory says that this business of Torrie and Stacy getting their clothes ripped off every time is going to stop, because she's going to teach them how to defend themselves.
Fink says that Jackie may be looking for some payback for the number they did to her, and that the Divas had better be on their toes.
Ivory snorts derisively, and says that they're used to looking over their shoulders because they've all been beautiful girls their whole lives, and they are used to the other girls being out to get them. "I, for one, am glad to be back. I have been reborn as a beautiful, strong woman who stands up for what's right, and can hold my own in the ring! And Torrie and Stacy will be able to say precisely that in another six months, too!"
Wilson says that they are glad to have Ivory as a leader.
Ivory says it's great having a girl team. "Girl Power to the third!"
Kelly begins to wrap things up, as Ivory says that she misses Kelly and Dr. Tom. "They are real gentlemen, the most wonderful gentlemen in the Federation," she says.
She then asks Kelly if he is partial?
"No, I am impartial," says Kelly, "I want both sides to succeed."
"I want to see more of you, Kevin," says Ivory.
Fink says that maybe Kelly should start doing some more house shows, "and get back on TV!"
Kelly, seeing the pit being dug for him to fall into, wisely changes the subject by saying that it is important for those starting in the business to listen, and to talk things out, and he's sure that Stacy and Torrie will be able to do just that with Ivory.
Ivory changes the topic direction once more by going back to Steven Richards and the "other woman." Kelly, a bit unwisely, asks the WCW Divas if they think Ivory is jealous of the other woman. Well, the Divas close ranks prettily, laugh merrily at Kelly's clumsy attempt to stir things up, and change the subject once more.
Kelly, conceding game, set, and match in this exchange with the WCW Divas, (who leave the show at this point) winds up shilling the latest edition of the WWF Magazine, the one with Chris Jericho on the cover, and Stacy Keibler in the gatefold. Kelly also plugs Torrie Wilson's on-line video, as well as her upcoming magazine photo spreads.
Kelly promos the charity softball game at Shea Stadium tomorrow, this time for the fans in the NYC area, and reiterates that it is for a good cause.
The "Too Bad to Broadcast" house show in Uniondale also gets a repeat plug, as does the charity show in Birmingham, AL for Terry Gordy's family.
The answer to this week's "Outthink the Fink":
The song's title was "I'll be Your Hero."
(Dead silence. You can hear muffled snickering from the stage crew, at Lex Luger's expense.)
Kelly says that, well, it isn't quite as catchy as "Let the Bodies Hit The Floor!", but hey, it was the 90's, it was a different time.
Next week's guest will be Diamond Dallas Page. Kelly says that they are going to talk about what may be the biggest match in DDP's career, that being the Steel Cage Tag Title bout at SummerSlam.
AND, we will have the first ever LIVE Smackdown! from Salt Lake City, UT.
See you next week.
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