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JerryvonKramer

Letters from Kayfabe

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On a bit of a Colosseum Home Video segue, I have all of these, and have a feeling that one of them contains a Tito Santana v Koko B Ware face v face match, during which Koko does a sort of heel turn on Tito. It always struck me as kind of an odd match, especially as Koko didn't really have a heel run in the WWF. Anyone else recall anything about this?

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I believe this is the match you're referring to:

 

 

What I was told was there was an idea to turn Koko as he was stale as hell by this point, and they simply wanted to test the waters. Bobby Heenan really made the match by putting over the possibility of Koko as a heel.

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Of course you can't cover everything, but I'm surprised no one touched on the weird Prime Time-only angle where Bad News Brown and the Brawler formed a NYC-based tag team, only for Bad News to turn on him after one match, leading to a TV blowoff.

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I'd love to see you do a segment on the different versions of the Orient Express. How do you feel each version differed, what was the cause of the changes between Sato and Kato, and how do you feel the ranked within the tag team scene at the time?

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So my question would have to be about the makeup of managerial stables during the Heenan, Hart, Fuji and Slick era. I think that by looking deep into their respective families, you can find some patterns to who was with who and why. Slick's "Big 2" of Bossman and One Man Gang were a subversion of typical white power structures (cops and bikers respectively) who both ended up having to answer to a black man. OMG obviously would become even more controlled as he became Akeem and became a "African" figure. Mr. Fuji was someone who would revel in pain and torture with his guys like the Powers of Pain and The Berzerker during this period with that motivation to cause more punishment often being their Achilles heel. Hart tended towards misfits like the Rougeaus and Honky Tonk Man who would want some form of adulation that they did not deserve. Heenan actually had two patterns of dumb meatheads he could rip off like Haku and Hercules as well as wish fulfillment characters like Rude, Perfect and Andre who were the physical talents he couldn't be (sexual tyrannosaurus, super athlete and the embodiment of wrestling power) . Do you guys have any thoughts or am I completely off?

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Next week we're taking a pretty in-depth look at Bobby Heenan's entire run, so we hope to get into a lot more of this stuff with the other managers in time. One thing I've been wondering about is what was the connection between Jimmy Hart and Canadians? He had Bret Hart, Dino Bravo, "Canadian" Earthquake, Rougeaus ... he was "the Mouth of the South", so why was he consistently poaching talent from north of the border?

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How about Harvey Wippleman too. Did his guys suck because of his poor skills or was he drawn to bottom level talent? Was he known as a shit manager so he could only get shit clients to sign with him?

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Parv and Alan, love the show so far! It's great to have a WWF podcast that doesn't cover the same old ground.

 

Anyways, my favorite manager is The Coach. Can you give me some background information on just who he was? I remember Bobby Heenan retired from managing and gifted Mr. Perfect's contract to The Coach. Did The Coach get any of Heenan's other guys? Why was he also with the Beverly Brothers? Why did he dissappear so fast?

 

Any info you can give will be greatly appreciated. Keep up the good work!

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Episode 6:

 

http://placetobenation.com/letters-from-kayfabe-6/

 

Letters6.png

 

Allan and Parv deliver more hot cheesy action from the sack.

 

 

1. The Mailbag: Virgil's title shot at Bret Hart / Joe Fowler / The Coach

2. The Event Center with JT Rozzero: SNME #28, taped: 9/18/90, aired: 10/13/90

3. The Long Topic: The management decisions of Bobby Heenan

 

To write in to the mailbag, tweet @allan_cheapshot or @JerryvonK

 

Follow along on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLS1QYjCSmymh7s-iGFTbGeK2bvEjYteaq

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More early-'90s minutiae...

 

There was some backstory given to Virgil getting a title shot. In the promos for the match, airing the previous week, Bret mentioned that as new champion he inherited Flair's commitments. Not that Virgil vs. Flair is all that less random of a title match than Virgil vs. Bret.

 

I think the Beverlys were sort of supposed to be spoiled rich boys--'50s style blond bombers as mentioned, as crossed with Jim Cornette. They were given the hometown of Shaker Heights, Ohio for some reason. Shaker Heights is an affluent, ritzy suburb of Cleveland but I don't really see it as a nationally known city, so how the decision was made to settle on *that* as a gimmick hometown has oddly fascinated me for awhile.

 

Coach was actually given sort of a burial on his way out. Mr. Perfect's final TV appearances as a wrestler were in the weeks following SummerSlam, but taped before. Coach wasn't with him (live, Bret came down and stole the IC belt and Coach chased him to the back, to cover for Perfect no longer being champion) and it was indicated on commentary that there was a backstage blow-up at SummerSlam with Perfect blaming Coach for his title loss. And that was it for him. (These matches are also notable for Perfect's back being so fucked up that he couldn't even finish with the Perfect-Plex.)

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Your Heenan talk got me thinking, during the "second golden age" of WWF Managers, when Heenan, Slick, Fuji and Jimmy Hart are all simultaneously running strong, what heels didn't have managers? Not counting guys who's managers were slowly split away over time or guys who debuted solo then were assigned a manager.

 

Ted DiBiase didn't depending on if you want to count Virgil as a manager or not. Even then, they still paired him with Sherri and Jimmy Hart later on.

 

Rick Martel had a fairly long run by himself as The Model but even then, he had Slick at the beginning.

 

Jake Roberts had a year or two run as a solo heel. I have no clue who could even fit with him thematically, maybe Mr. Fuji? Roberts is such a unique heel the rules don't even apply to him.

 

For some reason, Ron Bass never had a manager. No clue why he received special treatment because I can't recall him talking much. Bass has to be the strangest exception to the rule.

 

If you wanna go back even further to the Three Wise Men days, every heel had one, no exceptions. Seems like heel managers were one of those Vince Sr. staples that they stuck with until the managers themselves faded away.

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There was one exception in the Three Wise Men era: Zbyszko never aligned with a manager after turning, even though he was courted by all three.

 

Bad News Brown was also manager-less, but of course his being a loner was a defining part of his character.

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Good call on Bad News. He's similar to Jake in that he's so far outside the box the rules don't apply to him. Bobby Heenan would get his ass kicked if he tried skimming a manager's fee out of his payday. No manager would want this guy. Now if he was Mildly Unpleasant News Brown, they would probably have him in Slick's gang.

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Randy Savage doesn't count?

 

Elizabeth wasn't the usual heel valet, the way Sherri would be for Savage's second heel run. I mean she was used (distraction/human sheild) but she wasn't a heel second in the traditional sense, so it was almost like she didn't have to be there.

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I was thinking the other day about some of the staples of this era of WWF wrestling and what has extinguished due to time. I was wondering if you guys think the post match humiliation gimmick could ever some back as part of someone's character. You never see guys getting bills shoved down their throats, getting covered with snakes or getting wailed on with nightsticks anymore. I say bring it back personally. What post match shenanigans worked and which didn't?

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Dear Parv and Allan,

 

one of my brother's favourite wrestlers was Bastion Booger. Where did he come from and why didn't he last? Wasn't he unbeatable with his hump, so nobody could pin him? Was that a real or fake hump?

 

Tell me everything about Bastion Booger please, it will make my brother's day!

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Episode 7:

 

http://placetobenation.com/letters-from-kayfabe-7/

 

letters7-253x300.jpg

 

Allan and Parv take it to the very edges of the cheese platter, and introduce a new regular feature.

 

 

1. The Mailbag: The Mariner / Nikolai Volkoff in 1994 / Adam Bomb

2. The Event Center with JT Rozzero: The final matches of Akeem

3. The Long Topic: The WWF's use of music from 1984 to 1996

4. WWF Magazine corner: Greg Valentine's motives for turning on Jimmy Hart in 1991

 

To write in to the mailbag, tweet @allan_cheapshot or @JerryvonK

 

Follow along on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLS1QYjCSmymgXS1IPLq25iQwb0onG-Ylg

 

Grab the mag: https://www.sendspace.com/file/2z3j5o

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To write in to the mailbag, tweet @allan_cheapshot or @JerryvonK

 

 

I wrote in this thread, is that cool?

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Funny thing with Nikolai is that while his relationship with DiBiase started with a really shitty premise, he became a pretty loyal foot soldier and hung around for a while. He bought into the cause! Maybe he was missing that leadership in his life that he used to get from Mother Russia. He actually did hang around in 1995 because he is part of the Million Dollar Team behind Bigelow at Mania XI.

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