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[1991-09-28-WWF-Superstars] Funeral Parlor: Jake Roberts

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Everything Jake does here is awesome -- taunting the snake, the way he carries himself ... he's still the same Jake, but everything from his walk to his sneer is perfect. That doesn't even get to his words, which are fantastic. Undertaker and Paul Bearer are creepy, but they look like cartoon characters compared to Jake, who really is a dark motherfucker.

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Jake has to have some sort of Funeral Parlor guest appearance record. And there's still more to come. Roberts informs the children of America that their parents are liars and that their night time fears are all real. All while holding a cobra and flicking at its head. That's a heel for you. Jake declares that once bitten, "you are no more," which had to be a conscious shot at the Ultimate Warrior. He finishes with threats towards Sid Justice, his second ill-fated feud since turning heel. Another strong promo, but we ain't seen nothing yet.

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I love how Jake does this promo holding a very aggressive snake the whole time. Roberts has some words for Sid about stepping in the ring against the Snake.

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After seeing this interview, it's hard to believe that Jake was getting cheered just a couple of months before. He comes off as legitimately unhinged, so much so that even Percy's scared to death (no pun intended) of him. The words are scary enough, particularly to the younger kids in the audience, but the constant teasing of the cobra is what sets this apart. 1986 Jake was scary enough, but he didn't go nearly this far. That Jake was all about using Damien to psych out his opponents and then using his skills to defeat them. This Jake is just out to destroy anything and everything in his way; no subtlety, no mind games. He tells you flat out what he's going to do, and it's up to you to stop him if you're willing to stoop to his level. There were only certain faces that could have feuded with this version, and we know two of them: Savage and Taker. The only other person sick enough to take on this Jake may have been sitting to Vince's left, and even he's a stretch by now, though a Piper/Jake verbal war with Piper allowed to go full tilt would have been a classic.

 

You can tell Jake's really having a good time doing this character, and he'd have never had the chance to be this dark in the mid-eighties. He'd have been eventually fed to Hogan and spat out, after which he'd have probably had the run that his attack on Warrior ended. I can't honestly say that it's good to see Jake doing stuff like this, but it's probably the most compelling angle in the WWF right now, even moreso than Flair/Hogan/Piper.

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Jake is tremendous here. I'm trying to think of anything he's done so far that reaches this level of both awesome and completely dark. The way he's cutting that eerie, aggressive promo while pissing off a cobra that is wrapped around his glove and not getting bitten himself is completely insane.

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