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  1. Eddie is Dom's papi. Believe the 'fabe, brutha.
  2. SomethingSavage

    Is Impact the best promotion in wrestling history?

    Ethan Page is a guy I really started to like in PWG. That's an environment where it's easy to overboard with the crowd interactions & whatnot, but I thought he really shined with his taunts. Dude was busting out some smooth, well-timed heel tactics. I'm not following ANY weekly wrestling shows at the moment, but if I were - Impact would be number one with a bullet. Even so, I will definitely be going back and catching all their shows retroactively at some point. I just don't have the time with my schedule right now. But it should be fun to do a binge watch at some stage in the future & enjoy this little period that is totally going unrecognized & underappreciated by a large section of the fandom.
  3. Totally. And that's what I'm saying. Even with all the damage of bad booking, 2019 Braun isn't being used to his full potential. Rewind back to 2017 and the guy still had an actual shot of breaking through. I'm not suggesting he was Goldberg over. But he was Ryback over. And, in today's landscape, that's about as good as it gets. No one in their system is permitted to stand out. So they should treat it like God's gift anytime someone actually gets over on their watch. Just how much "measurable success" can a Braun or a Ryback expect to have if they're cut off at the knees before they're ever actually allowed to run with the ball in the first place? Braun got over as a monster & a killer performing feats of strength. So keep doing that. It's irrational to step back and wonder, "But what if he needed to wrestle a 45 minute clinic??" Nobody cares. And nobody is calling to see that shit anyway. Dude was over based on what he COULD do. Fuck what he can't. That's nonsense. "Great" matches aren't even great without narrative anyway. We have all these supposedly classic 5-star matches happening today that won't stand out one bit with a little distance & time. Because they're just hollow matches. With no narrative. Without context. Without meaning or emotional attachment. There's no reason for anyone outside the bubble to give a fuck or recall a single thing about them. Getting over is the struggle. That's the goal. If Braun could do that without having to fit some traditional template or mold, then that's fine.
  4. SomethingSavage

    Dave Meltzer stuff

    Sounds to me like some studio is sitting on a goldmine.
  5. Where is the line when it comes to that thinking? When does that cautionary booking stop being beneficial and start being detrimental? Do we avoid putting the belt on Steve Austin in 98 because his neck is busted & he's on borrowed time? Do we sidestep John Cena in 2005 because he's clunky and still noticeably green? Do we derail Jeff Hardy in 2009 because he may happen upon a drug den? For real. Sometimes you go with a hot hand, simply because it's hot. I dislike a lot of things about modern WWE, but that mentality ranks among the very worst. Stop searching for reasons NOT to go with an over act. Because you'll always find faults when that's what you're seeking. Look at Bill Goldberg for the ideal scenario of a green guy who gets over. You strap the rocket to him. You push him to the moon. You pair him with the right guys along the way. And you hope like hell he adapts and improves. But you ride that momentum until the wheels fall off. You don't stall him out at stage one to teach him. Because it saps his credibility and slows him to a halt. That's what they've done with Braun. They've effectively repeated the same mistakes they made with Ryback once he caught on. When something catches on & gets over, people will overlook flaws in "work rate" and athleticism. It isn't necessary for everyone to work a lengthy fucking five-star match. The name of the game is to get over. If good matches are what get a guy over, then okay. That's fine. But it's a device. Just like interviews. Promos. Cool gear. Awe-inspiring entrances. An endearing back story. Whatever. Great matches are NOT the endgame. They are a device to get over. Stop pretending that it's the end-all, be-all. Because that's what leads to this shitty state of storytelling the entire business is stuck in right now. Braun not being able to have long matches of 5-star quality doesn't make him any less valuable a commodity. For fuck's sake. He was OVER. That is literally his value right there. That is currency is pro wrestling, people. Nothing else matters. No. Not even great matches, which are as commonplace as the ring ropes on any wrestling show these days anyway. And it's also ass backwards that anyone would look at a monster like Braun and say. "Yeah. But can he work an Iron Man Match?" or whateverthefuck. Hey. Hey there. This shit's fake, y'all. They can literally create ANY scenario they want around his matches. He can have garbage brawls. Violent spectacles. Short, powerful sprints. WHATEVER. But any decent booker would spot these hurdles and offer up easy solutions. And any reasonable promoter would recognize the value in an act that's over & realize they should play to his strengths - rather than try to fit a square peg into a late 70s NWA Champion sized hole. For fuck's sake. This. Exactly this. The first guy to take off automatically wins the race, because everyone on their roster is running in place.
  6. SomethingSavage

    Dave Meltzer stuff

    Bischoff brings it up all the time - mainly as a way to dismiss something whenever Dave speculates or includes guesswork in his reporting. Tbf I find that Eric is actually a less hostile toward Dave these days, especially when compared to Bruce. The "Mabel was the third man" bit does still get used regularly though.
  7. The Corbin feud was the final nail for him. It was clear he wasn't recovering after the loss to Brock at the second Saudi show though. What a waste. Braun (well, Braun plus Joe promos) brought me back to WWE temporarily. They felt like they had hot, believable opponents for Brock. And it seemed like they literally couldn't wait to undo that.
  8. Braun feels cold as ice. Sad to say it, but the dude feels like a total non-entity these days.
  9. You're perceiving this all wrong, brutha. Daniel Bryan is such a tremendous heel - uncool, unlikable, and obnoxious - that he shines up the babyfaces before they're ever even called upon to do anything. All they have to do is basically show up, be seen, and oppose the eco-vegan. That's it. The babyfaces aren't being booked particularly stronger now or anything. This is mostly the work of Bryan, and yes. It's an incredible run.
  10. I remember being pleasantly surprised by that Orton/Cena HiaC match in the moment, and nobody talks about it. It came at a time when the booking seemed to indicate that we'd get Brock/Cena in the cell, and I remember feeling letdown when it was announced that we'd see another Orton match instead. I've gone back and watched it a couple of times since then. It doesn't hold up as well as I'd hoped, but the finish is still pretty dope. The match is mainly unspectacular, but it's solid and one of the better outings from that pairing in awhile. Oh. But the pre-match hype video is what makes it. That thing's fucking aces. They draw comparisons to the great, memorable sports rivalries in history. And while actual reality doesn't necessarily place Cena/Orton in that same rarified air, you could be convinced by the buildup video. It does a fine job of selling the idea and letting you buy in. Their late 2013/early 2014 series did nothing for me. I liked their 2009 a lot - probably more than most. The I Quit match from Breaking Point emphasized story, structure, and character over action and movez. And the final product was all the better for it. Just a fun, fascinating character study of a pro rasslin babyface versus a heel. Cena endures torment and torture the entire match and never surrenders. But Orton gets caught and cornered - and with that shoulder getting tested - he taps instantly. Like a bitch. It's wonderful. I mean, I know we were talking AJ, but yeah. He's awesome in gimmick matches, too. So I actually wouldn't mind seeing Styles and Orton paired up in an I Quit or LMS setting before this thing is settled. I know the standard WWE booking strategy of endless rematches is tired and unoriginal, but ya know we're getting it. Might as well liven it up with stipulations.
  11. It's miraculous how over Kofi has suddenly gotten, but I still want championship mode Big E to be the endgame when it's all said and done. No reason why this can't be the angle to get them there either.
  12. SomethingSavage

    WWE Hall of Fame 2019

    Fair enough if you guys don't find them worthy due to a lack of star ratings or whateverthefuck, but I'm absolutely unafraid to say I'm a Booker fan for life. Harlem Heat had the music. The in-your-face trash talking to the camera. The Scissors Kick that made its way into every single one of my CAW's move sets. And the HARLEM HANGOVER, which I popped for every time like it was Lesnar busting out the Shooting Star or the infamous Paul Wight Moonsault. Fuck the critics. There are guys having supposed 5-star matches today that would sell their firstborn child to be half as over as THA HEAT.
  13. SomethingSavage

    Comic books and Manga Thread

    So my friend pointed out there was actually a follow-up to Rage of Ultron, and of course I had to check that out. It's a fairly solid sequel, too. There's some great symmetry with the previous story, as everything still sort of hinges on the intertwining Pym/Ultron/Vision dynamic and that father/son paternal theme. The idea is that Hank Pym shows back up on Earth, alive & well after all. But he openly reveals his new symbiotic bond with the Ultron AI to his fellow Avengers, which creates this uneasy sense of dread that just hangs in the air like a black cloud for the first half of the story. It's great suspense. There are some tremendous little scenes in here also. At one point, Pym is shown the monument they had built for him in honor of his valiant sacrifice. But Hank's mind takes it in another direction and instantly asks, "So you guys built me a statue, huh? Did you even try LOOKING FOR ME first..?" Good, tense moment there. There's another neat scene after the Wasp's suspicions are confirmed and she declares that something needs to be done, because Hank never wanted to be kept alive by being hooked up to some machine. There are also refreshing bits of comedy relief sprinkled throughout the story, courtesy of Deadpool. And that's an appreciated piece of the puzzle. The climax is everything you'd expect, as it delivers the sprawling, beat-em-up style action you'd want with an Ultron story. Quicksilver in particular suffers a brutal beating. And the final standoff between Pym/Ultron and Vision is excellent. I won't give away the exact ending, but it's a super satisfying finale for the Pym/Ultron saga. And the art captures those closing moments extremely well. Most of my time lately has been spent wrapped up in Hulk stuff. I wanted to go back and experience the actual Planet Hulk story and see what that was all about. I mean, I was aware of it by way of the animated movie from years ago. And I knew it was an influencing element for the Thor: Ragnarok film. I enjoyed both of those, so I wanted to see for myself why the story is so highly regarded. And now I know. I'm knee-deep in Hulk stuff at the moment, so I may reserve my overall comments for a later date. But Planet Hulk and World War Hulk were INCRRRREDIBLE. Greg Pak totally revitalized Hulk as a character for me. I was always on/off again throughout much of Peter David's run, but I always felt like the Hulk suffered from the same symptoms as Wolverine's solo series. When the stories were on point and focused, they were fucking aces. But the title was a pattern of peaks & valleys, because it was always only a matter of time before things reverted back to being basic stories of action and fights without any actual narrative worth following. Anyway, I'm forever a fan of solid, sturdy world-building. And Pak provided that for the Hulk - only to tear it all down and reinvigorate the Hulk's rage in the process. Worldbreaker Hulk is a fucking force of nature, and watching him wreck shop is truly a treat in itself. I've mentioned before that I'm not very attentive when it comes to artwork sometimes, but that doesn't apply when it comes to a guy like Romita Jr. His stuff is top shelf here. Outside of Bagley, Romita Jr. may have been my favorite Spidey artist back in the day. And he serves up that same quality here. The way he draws the sheer anger and rage on Hulk's face is freaking PHENOMENAL. The eyes are legitimately intimidating & downright scary at times. And he depicts an ugly mug like nobody else. Victims of the Hulk's rampage look like hammered dog-shit. It's fantastic from panel to panel. I'm not particularly thrilled about the Sentry getting the Super Cena push and being positioned as the one guy to stand his own ground against Worldbreaker Hulk, but I've read enough reviews to realize that's pretty much the common consensus. So I won't criticize the decision too harshly. It just seems like one of those moments in comics where they are bound & determined to get a character over, and it just doesn't stick like they want. Inhumans. Nate Grey. Sentry. All these things fall into that bucket for me. I'm currently working my way through the one-two punch of Greg Pak and Jeph Loeb stories right now, and it's been a blast. Red Hulk was a character I initially rolled my eyes at, but he has definitely grown on me fairly fast. That's a testament to Loeb's handling of the character and some of the stuff he's done with him. Ditto for Skaar, Son of Hulk. Legacy characters and derivatives are something I normally associate with DC, but they've certainly become a big thing in Marvel with the diversity movement and the expansion of title lines. In any case, I eventually found that Red Hulk and Skaar had won me over as their own unique, distinct characters. I've recently arrived at (what feels like) the big, pivotal turning point of the World War Hulks story. Banner has reabsorbed the gamma radiation and transformed back into the green Hulk. In an AWESOME, EPIC, UNFORGETTABLE panel... He tells his fellow Avengers, "Gentlemen... RUN." Tremendous. The fight with Skaar is crazy violent and totally what you'd want from an action-packed finale. There *is* some melodramatic father/son stuff sprinkled in, as some attempt to callback to Banner's childhood abuse, and that mostly feels like a weak thread if I'm being honest. But everything else is awesome - including the last(?) brawl with Red Hulk, which features a cool little reveal as an added bonus also. So yeah. That's my peanut buttah & jam at the moment. Pak and Loeb on Hulk is some seriously good shit. It's not the most thought-provoking reading material or anything, but it's a genuinely great comic book from page to page. There are elements of mystery to keep you guessing. There's a metric ton of guest appearances & cameos to offer variety. There's intense, all-out, balls-to-the-wall POWERFUL action to keep you engaged. And it's actually a love story underneath it all - a tale of one man experiencing love & loss again and again like a trend, and just how damn MAD that makes him feel. Highly recommended. Check it out if you haven't yet, for sure. These Hulk stories (Planet Hulk and beyond) by Pak and Loeb feel like a real Renaissance for the character to me. It's akin to Miller on Batman. Or Miller on Daredevil. Or Claremont on X-Men. It's essentially taking a character and reshaping his whole environment. It's an incredibly rewarding reading experience. And, above all else, it's just a super fun comic book.
  14. I know it's a blind spot for most, but Angle and Drew had two REALLY good matches in TNA. And they pretty much told a similar story with the rematch being Drew improving enough to defeat Kurt on Angle's farewell tour. Although, yeah. In an ideal scenario, they would reach for someone with a WWE tie-in to Kurt.
  15. SomethingSavage

    WWE Fastlane 2019

    Another singles run for Seth is forever the wrong choice. Regardless of circumstance. Nothing says, "We really don't have anyone else" like the Archislayer.