Archive for February, 2008

Fantasy Booking

Thursday, February 28th, 2008

So since coming back into the wrestling fold a few weeks ago I decided that I wanted to get caught back up on all that I missed for 5 years.

Part of that has been getting caught back up on all the internet smarkdom that I came to have huge following for before I went to wrestling school and started training. Know that by ‘Smark’ I am referring to a breed of fan who knows it’s all a work and thinks of themselves as smarter and more knowledgeable than the average fan. Despite having never stepped in the ring themselves, they think they have the business ‘figured out’.

I pretty much stopped bothering with those writers and those sites once I graduated from wrestling school. Around that time I was more interested in the stuff I was doing than what was going on in the TV world. It stands to reason that since I wasn’t watching the TV product, I wasn’t reading the smark sites which follow them either.

So it came as a huge surprise to me that after I found a bunch of the old internet writers still had sites going, they also all had one thing in common; They were all totally full of bullshit.

Holy crap! How did I eat the words of these people for so long? I actually thought they had good opinions/ideas and had some clue as to what they were talking about. Boy was I wrong!

for example, I was recently watching a DVD of an old WWE PPV from a few years ago where HHH was facing Randy Orton for the world title. About 3/4 of the way through the match they F up a spot (Still not sure who’s fault it was, willing to bet Orton) and Orton takes a header straight into the mat. It didn;t seem like much of a fall at the time, or even on replay, but it was obvious that Orton was in legit trouble. When something ugly happens and one wrestler lies on the floor outside of the ring, and the other wrestler spends 2-3 minutes showboating for the crowd and doing a big sell job, know that something is amiss. Here HHH did his thing for seemingly EVER away from Orton while ref Earl Hebner tried to get Orton up, even saying, ‘Randy if you don’t get back in the ring I’m going to have to count you out’ while standing about 3 inches away from his face. Anyways they somehow finish the match, Orton could barely stand up, and after giving it the old college try HHH just calls it in and barely gets Orton on his feet to take the Pedigree and end the match. It was ugly ugly ugly, the match was decent to that point, but it got all jacked up after the concussion.

I was curious to see what the internet writers back in the day had to say about the match, so I found a review of the show. The writer in question, who was named ‘The Rick’, totally blew the monkey trying to review the match. Here is a linked quote from the review;

“I have NO fricking idea where they go with the Orton/Head Injury thing, if in fact they go anywhere. It might have just been a one-night gimmick to explain HHH’s ability to beat Orton because of a flukey bump. But here’s the thing: if so, they COMPLETELY failed to get sympathy from the fans. And also: the match was laid out that HHH never once cheated during the ref bump. He TRIED to use the sledge, but never did. Evolution never came out. He just straight-up beat Randy Orton, fair and square. Which sends the subconscious message to fans, “HHH is just that damned good. Feud over.” Which is also fine with me. Another one in the same area as the opener: very good, thanks to an excellent final half.”

Maybe the reason for the weird Orton/Head injury angle was due to Orton suffering a head injury! Call me crazy, but sometimes the most obvious answer is the correct one. And then at the end of the tag I listed, he calls the final half of the match ‘excellent’. What is excellent about one wrestler losing his shit, while the other one tries his best to cover for him and work with it? I’d rather watch 2 guys at their best both bring it for the whole time! See Jerry Lynn/Rob Van Dam for another example of a dude suffering a head bump and having trouble in a match. The idea that the WWE had it prewritten that Orton would take an ugly mistakey shot to the head, and also that Orton would be a good enough to actor to fake the after effects that well insults my intelligence. Once again gotta chalk it up to another online smark trying to offer commentary from something he knows nothing about.

but bad internet reviews of shows aside, the worst offender of retarded smarkiness has got to be the fantasy bookings. Basically in the world of internet idiocy smarks try to wear the hat of the booker and write about how they would run the show! Yay! It’s the wrestling equivalent of fan fiction. You know, those lengthy stories that someone who still lives in Mom’s basement wrote about Chewbacca’s heroic adventures as a lone wolf bounty hunter that you never wanted to read. Those same people that write Sailor Moon sex fantasy stories also want to rewrite their favorite wrestling shows to make them awesome!!!~well, in their own eyes.

Basically the smarks out there grab a hold of their favorite wrestler, and then write out a series of events/matches/interviews that will eventually result in their favorite midcarder/curtainjerker winning the title at Wrestlemania. These fantasy booking segments are usually lengthy and always lame. I’m not trying to say that the big TV shows always do a great job of creating compelling television, but I will say that the internet writers for sure do not.

Again the idea of fantasy booking insults my intelligence. The writers who put their fanfic online have once again, no idea what they are talking about. They do not understand any of the backstage stuff that goes on, they do not understand the personalities of the performers involved, they do not understand what will go over with the fans, they do not understand the basic mechanics of a pro wrestling match, they do not understand the basics of how promos work, they do not understand a whole lot about the business. Other than those small details they have some really great things to say!

The whole thing reminds me of sports talk radio, when someone calls up a show in Atlanta with his big 4 team trade that will get Kobe Bryant traded to the Hawks for just a second round draft pick. ‘But it will work, I don;t understand why it wouldn’t work!?’ They say as they get laughed off the air. On the internet, there is sadly nobody to laugh you off the air. So you are free to write 10,000 word bookings about how you will get CM Punk the world title in 3 months. Or how you’ll work Raven back into all the major storylines, or how bringing back The Rock and Hacksaw Jim Duggan together in a tag team title angle will be the saving grace of Monday Night Raw.

I just read an interesting video review of the Shawn Michaels DVD from one of my previously favorite internet smarks, Scott Keith. I was with him for much of what he was saying, even though he doesn’t quite understand how matches work. Anyways, the review of the DVD was going along pretty well until he got in to how he would have rebooked the entire King of the Ring 1998. Which would have taken out the Jake the Snake vs. Austin match. Which would have negated the whole ‘Austin 3:16′ thing, which would have really hurt Austin becoming a huge star. Of course in his mind and I paraphrase, ‘Austin could have faced Jake the Snake the following night on RAW and done the Austin 3:16 thing then, so no big deal.’ Other than the fact that the muse that struck Austin that night at that moment that created ‘Austin 3:16′ might not have struck at any other time on any other show. I suppose if you’re foolish and think that the whole ‘Austin 3:16′ thing was scripted and prewritten before the show that would not be a big deal. In the real world though this is not the case. To fantasy rebook lightning in a bottle in the name of slightly better matches is to mess with something that was shown through time to really work, and that makes no sense.

To those who think that their skills as a booker are strong, I suggest you test that for yourself. It seriously does not cost a whole lot to run an independent show, you could easily pull it off for under a grand, so go for it! I bet you’ll have no problem finding workers for a guaranteed payday. I guarantee they will be willing to do whatever booking crap you want to do as well! Go out there and put on shows in your neighborhood, and if you can grow your audience and not go broke then congrats, somebody will notice that.

Anyways, I’ll keep reading these internet smarks so that I can learn a little bit of their backstage information and research, but I’ll also continue to laugh at them for writing stupid nonsensical things at the same time. A word of advice to you fans out there, read everything those folks say with a huge grain of salt, they don’t know nearly as much as they would have you believe they do.

-Ray

ADDENDUM: Mr. Scott Keith was nice enough to post up here telling me that he did not write the rant that I was calling in to question. Relooking back on it, that rant was posted on his site, was written in a style very similar to his own, but does say that it was written by someone else. Well, the official title is ‘The Princess Rant for Heartbreak and Triumph: the Shawn Michaels Story’. I thought that was just a clever name for it, but I guess that someone named ‘The Princess’ actually wrote it. So there ya go, I’ll have to find something else to complain about in regards to Scott Keith. Shouldn’t be too hard, I’m good at finding things to get annoyed at. :)

My Body Is Broken

Sunday, February 24th, 2008

First day back at wrestling school.

I was early, as I wanted to be.

Laced my boots up good and snug. Got back in the ring and did some basic stuff. Training today taught me one thing above all else; I am not in the kind of shape I used to be.

I used to be able to will my body to do the impossible purely on a whim. Now it’s going to take some work to get back in form. 5 years of inactivity and sloth will do that to you. But we will get there, despite my overall lack of conditioning, I was able to show them that I did know what I was doing in there, the mind is still aware, even if the body is currently unwilling.

Now it’s 12 hours later, and my body is broken. I worked muscles today that I had forgotten that I had. Pushed myself about as far as I could currently manage, I will be glad once these first few steps are past me.

My back is tight and aching. My abdominals scream every time I try and sit up. My throat is still sore from taking a shot right to it. My back is covered in bruises from bouncing off the ropes. My head has a dull sort of pounding. Overall I am worn the hell out.

God I missed it.

-Ray

Looking for the feedback

Friday, February 22nd, 2008

So I’m at an impasse as to what kids show to do next. I have DVR’d a bunch of shows that have interesting names. Here’s the list of what I have on tap to possibly review;

Wow! Wow! Wubbzy!
Wiggles
JoJo’s circus
Ni-Hao, Kai-lan

I kinda know a tiny bit about the Wiggles, but the others are all totally clueless for me. Any suggestions between these or any other titles?

-Ray

Dix Cereal

Thursday, February 21st, 2008

Want to know what I’ve been doing?

It’s called Pop Co. and it’s a new sketch comedy show at the IO West!

Want to see a video I wrote for it? You do? Awesome!

Thanks to David Nowell for making the Dix logo for me.

V.D. Day?

Friday, February 15th, 2008

I went to a stand up comedy show last night.

I mean, I guess I could have gone out of a date on Valentines Day, but I didn’t feel like lowering my standards.

So the format for this show was, small venue, lots of comics each getting like 7 minutes, and as the 3 and a half hour show went on, more and more people took off. I was a little surprised to see the comics not supporting each other, but when I got home and thought about it, I realized it shouldn’t have surprised me at all.

One common theme of course for all these comics to discuss was Valentines Day. I thought it was really weird though that a bunch of them kept referring to it as V.D. Day.

V.D. Day? Did I miss something here. Nobody bothered to explain the joke, but like half of the comics made reference to it.

what is that even supposed to mean? V.D. Day? Valentines Day Day? I imagine it’s some joke involving venereal disease, and how plenty of ugly people give V.D to each other on that day. I don’t know, I guess it would have been nice if the 8th person who said it gave some form of explanation, instead of assuming that everyone was on board. So each time some new comic came up and said; ‘Happy V.D. Day’, I kept thinking to myself, Valentines Day Day, that doesn’t make sense!

Also I realized that given what I saw last night from a smattering of comics, there is no reason why I should not be doing it. My goal is to start trying to get on some shows by this summer. We shall see how it works out.

-Ray

So, am I crazy?

Thursday, February 14th, 2008

I found a pro wrestling school that operates out of Sherman Oaks, CA.

It’s been 5 years since I was last in the ring, I am not in the same shape I used to be, my body is not quite as able to absorb the punishment that it used to when I was training/wrestling back in the day.

That itch never seems to die though.

I’m going on Saturday morning to check the school out and maybe, just maybe get back in to the ring again after refreshing my training and getting back in shape.

So, am I crazy?

Aw Shut Up

Tuesday, February 12th, 2008

Ok, I was not involved with this video, but my group Big News made it this week. It is so rad that I had to put it up here. It is a parody of the Barrack Obama ‘Yes We Can’ commercial.

Enjoy!

Yo Gabba Gabba

Friday, February 8th, 2008

I know many of you have been waiting with baited breath for the next installment of Kids Show Round Up! So here we go!

Long time friend of the site Tom (Melvin Hertz) Pearce has a very strong opinion that Yo Gabba Gabba! should be the next one on my list. I defer to his judgment.

Now I am not going in to this show totally blind like all of the others so far. Not that I know much, I will say though that Tom had me watch some YouTube video about a song or something. I think it’s linked somewhere in a previous comment. I don’t know. Anyways I watched that, but obviously I don’t remember much about it. I do remember it was a bit painful.

Note that since I am not drinking any alcohol in the entire month of February, I will be doing this review stone cold sober. I don’t know if this will impair my ability, but we shall find out together.

Ok, enough set up, today’s episode is from 2007, it aired Monday 1-7 at 11:30am on Nickelodeon. I have been holding on to it for a little bit obviously, ah the magic of DVR. Today’s episode is called, “Scary”. Learning how to be brave and accept new things. Songs include “Don’t be afraid” and “Try it, You’ll like it.” Well those songs titles seem to make sense. Oddly enough, ‘Try it, you’ll like it’ is also a motto I’ve been using on the ladies since 1996. Hmm, probably not the same sphere of thought though.

Let’s get started, shall we?

It starts with the knowledge that we’re having a play date! Huzzah, maybe this is like my mantra after all, hmm, maybe not. Well, hopefully not.

We start with an Urkle looking dude in an orange suit of sorts.

Oh…My…God

he opened a box from hell and a bunch of monsters popped out and started dancing. I may be in hell.

Urkle wants to know if I have ever been scared, this has an answer which is an emphatic YES! The moment I started watching Yo Gabba Gabba! comes to mind.

Now we are on some planet. One monster is scared, The Pikmin monster insists he shouldn’t be afraid cause she is there. I would crap myself with fear if she was next to me singing. Wow, another monster is afraid and running up to her, they are all scared, but nothing is going on, more proof that they come from the box of hell.

You know, if we are going to do this up right, I need names for these monsters; we got Cyclops, Pikmin, Robot, Green Devil, and Other One. sounds like a plan. I’d like to believe that it’s obvious which one is which, if you are confused, I will be more than happy to ignore you.

Hi Audrey! You are dancing, you like to dance, I know this cause you just told me. Well maybe you are not so much dancing as jumping up and down arhythmically. I don’t think the Russian ballet will be calling anytime soon Audrey.

Now I’m tripping on acid apparently. It’s a trance song with with melting hands, bright colors, and shapes blurring into each other. Holy crap, I think someone spiked my soda. Do kids really watch this? Grooming the Dead Heads of tomorrow it’s Yo Gabba Gabba!

Now a cowboy kid is riding a green horse. Now he is gone, that was pointless, and now my head hurts.

Now Cyclops is screaming a song about how he likes bugs. Wesley Willis had more musicality. Other One is scared of bugs, I am too, I like Other One, for we share common opinions. Now while singing Cyclops has turned around and I can see a HUGE visible zipper on his back. Thank God kids are dumb, says the Nick Jr. program director.

Seriously, how do I not have a job as a writer somewhere? Someone got paid to write this song;
What’s that
Thats a ladybug
What’s that
That’s a ladybug,
What’s that
That’s a ladybug, and ladybugs can fly!!
They fly like ladybugs
They fly like ladybugs
They fly up to the sky.

The terror is gripping me. Oh no, Other One has changed her opinion through song. We no longer have shared opinions, Other One does not get me anymore, I shall have to move on.

Cyclops wants to play pretend. I want to pretend that I am not watching this anymore. He’s an astronaut! Yay, we’re all astronauts! Let’s trace around the outside of Cyclops til he is wearing a space suit, yippie!

8 bit animated heaven segment follows as in the graphics of original Nintendo. A little girl drives a car across a desktop and jumps it off of a pencil ramp. Now it’s over. What the hell is this show? The cracked out dreams of Amy Winehouse?

Back with the game. It’s dancy dance time! Oh boy! Who is our dancy dance friend today? Leslie! Oh my, Leslie is like that weird lunch lady who tried to be cool with you, but just was not. Leslie is teaching kids how to use jazz hands. Leslie is the devil. She morphed 5 kids in with her, and now they do the glitter (jazz) hands dance. Leslie is working on a front butt, she needs to dance more I think to prevent that from taking full effect. If I met Leslie out of character I’d probably find her secretly hot, like a chick that is all made up funky, but when she washes the makeup off and gets out of costume you discover that she’s really hot under all that stuff—what the hell is wrong with me??!?! I need a drink.

Hello Mark the semi-retarded artist! He’s going to draw a cat. Mark’s shirt would cause an epileptic to seizure. Red and yellow dots? Paired with lime green glasses? Somebody in the costume department went color blind again! “What’s are you talking about, I put him in the gray shirt again!” Bye Mark, that was actually a nice drawing of a cat, I would draw worse, I have poor drawing talent, I think I mock Mark because deep down I am jealous of him.

More 8 bit animation fun, now it’s over, these are short scenes, and they hurt my brain.

Snack time! Yay! What do demons from hell eat? Cantaloupe and crackers apparently. It’s avocado too! The other demons don’t want to eat a whole slice of plain avocado, I do not blame them. Hmm, if only there was an entertaining way to convince them. Now they sing about it, of course!!! Wait, they like it? Seriously? Avocado? They like it to the point of song? Try giving any kid a slice of avocado, i guarantee they don’t sing right afterwards, I mean, I wouldn’t. I’m ready for this song to end now. Please.
We like it
We like it
We tried it and now we like it!

Hi Maddie! You dance too huh? Well, keep up the dreams girl.

Cool Tricks! Adam has a cool trick he can play music with his hands! Really? Is that cool now a days? Maybe I’m old. Twinkle Twinkle Little Star? What Adam you don’t know Freebird? No way that is real, they piped in the sounds, no doubt. Adam gives a fist pump after his ‘success’, I pity Adam.

Kid on a train!

This Urkle guy is scary. Oh no Green Devil dropped his bread! Now it’s talking to him! Wait it’s talking? You gotta sweep up more man. It’s not just talking, under a microscope the germs on it are singing!
We are the tiny ugly germs
We are the tiny ugly germs!
Best…song…ever! Can I get a ring tone of that song? Oh man that would rule. Look, if you drop food and when you pick it up it says anything to you at all, just throw it away, eating it is NOT an option. Urkle is by the way the hand of God, so he gives more bread to Green Devil.

If Urkle had a threesome with Huggybear and Tron, and that torrid romance spawned a child, he’d be this guy. Now he wants to do the big bounce dance. Which consists of jumping left and right. Oh man, I bet that guy gets laid all the time. I need my own show.

Pikmin wants to play a game. She wants to play match the objects. Sure, I’m game for that. This is a purple triangle(!!!) let’s find the other purple triangle! What the hell, after Tinky Winky are we really doing this? Seriously? Someone at Nick Jr. needs to hit rehab quickly before it consumes him. That green square is for sure not the purple triangle. Purple circle is NOT IT either! YES YES YES that purple triangle is for sure a purple triangle! My perfect record in match the objects stays intact.

Now a kid walks with a toy dinosaur. For real kids shows should not be this cracked out. This program makes the Banana Splits Show look like a bag of oregano.

Urkle breaks it down, SNAP!!!

We are only 20 minutes in and they are musically recapping the whole show, not that I am complaining about drawing near the end mind you. Oh man, maybe I get to hear the germs song again! Oh crap, I forgot about the bugs song, but here it is again, I have a really pounding headache at this point. Wow, 20 minutes of show and then 10 minutes of recap? That is a winning formula for lazy writers, I’ll have to try that in my next sketch show I do. Hmm, I am convinced that these dance videos of these kids are purely for blackmail purposes later in life. Yeah booty, WE ARE THE TINY UGLY GERMS!!! Those guys rule all.

Bye Yo Gabba Gabba! Have a good time back in hell! And hell is a boombox carried by an orange Urkle by the way, I have learned that today.

Now it’s over. A Dora the explorer ad is on, and it’s another play date! Hmm, maybe I should try dating chicks with kids from now on, play dates sound hot. Ha ha just kidding I hate kids!

So in conclusion I would have to say that this show is quite painful. I also think that watching this show could cause your kids to develop ADD. Fast paced non sensical cutting around, songs that cause my ears to bleed, and characters with all the development of a fresh Polaroid. If you have kids, I highly recommend you be a responsible parent and try to keep them away from this show for the benefit of your own sanity.

-Ray

PS. Of course if you have any suggestions of current kids shows you think need an on the spot critical review, just send ‘em along, I take requests!

Pop Co!

Thursday, February 7th, 2008

Yo doggz,

My new show is debuting this Sunday night!

11pm, IO West Theatre, right after Big News.

I wrote a bunch of stuff for it, and am in it as well, so if you live in/near LA come out and hang and support the show!

We shot a video I wrote for it earlier today, when I am able to (hopefully next week) I’ll post it up here for y’all to see. Don’t get too excited though, it’s a cheap joke. :)

-Ray

Such a shame

Sunday, February 3rd, 2008

I recently have been getting back in to watching Pro Wrestling after about a 5 year absence.

I am just now Netflixing old Royal Rumbles and Wrestlemanias from earlier this decade. They have been fun.

I saw a match from 2003 where Eddy Guerrero was facing off with Chris Benoit for a little while. It was really good stuff, then I got an array of sadness. Here are 2 of the most talented guys on the planet, and both are gone now. Both destroyed themselves in different ways, and it’s really sad that both were overcome by their own internal demons.

Such a shame.