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Rob Naylor Comp


anarchistxx
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Picked Volume 1 of this up a couple of weeks back to restart my interest in Pro Wres as well as the PWO comp which I'm nearly through. My random thoughts on soome of the matches here...

 

Low-Ki v Hotstuff Hernandez (Disc 1) (22/04/07 IWA-MS)

 

Bald ugly big guy against bald ugly little guy. I much prefer Low Ki when he's heeling it up and spitting at his opponents, rather than here when he plays the pseudo-martial-arts character who's pretty stiff but makes BJ Whitmer look charismatic. One view of the crowd leads me to suspect it's chock full of life's losers, and my suspicions are confirmed as they sneak in both a 'Kobashi' and a 'This is awesome' chant before this one is out. The setting is really perfect for this kind of match, blood stained mat probably carrying some sort of sexually transmitted infection, dimly lit, you can tell they paid less that $250 to rent this building, and if not they were fucking robbed. If only we had seen a crazed southern crowd throwing things, chewing tobacco and generally threatening a riot.

 

All said, this was a whole load of fun. They basically stiff fuck out of each other for fifteen minutes, with some cool size based spots thrown in along the way. The best thing about pseudo-martial-arts Ki is that he doesn't mind selling, absolutely throwing himself about here, most notable for an insane choke-hold-into-overhead-suplex. This is Ki though, so you know he's going over, and it feels a bit of a let down considering the beatings he's taken, and when he's only responded with a few admittedly cool kicks. ***3/4

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1-2-3 Kid/Razor Ramon v Diesel/Shawn Michaels (Disc 1) (30/10/95 WWF)

 

This was again a blast, not without it's fault. The biggest of those was Shawn Michaels kicking out of far too much and with some real suspect selling, including being back on offence ten seconds after a Razor's Edge. No denying the pacing and variation here, you have Nash doing a diving shoulder block, and everyone pretty much exhausts their move sets. Never mind the haters, moves (sorry, should that be movez~!) are cool, I'll take this over minimalist any day. I'm over exaggerating though, since it isn't like we've got Kobashi in there, and these guys are really limited in terms of offence usually (minus Waltman)...luckily there's four of them and no wasted time.

 

Interesting that I rate this the same as the Guerrero/Barr/Santo/Octagon tag that I never got into...thing is, I can recognize how great they both are, even if I prefer this more. Neither are among the truly great tag matches. A note on star ratings; they apparently suck and are uniformly ridiculed now. For me, they are still extremely useful as a gage to the quality of a match when a. Not wanting to read spoilers before you buy, and b. Comparing it to other bouts. ****

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Never mind the haters, moves (sorry, should that be movez~!) are cool

I forget which board it was at but I think it was tomk who pointed out that what you're responding to isn't a talking point that anyone actually tries to argue. Nobody argues that cool moves are bad, just that cool moves by themselves do not necessarily make a great match and lack of cool moves does not make a match bad.
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Never mind the haters, moves (sorry, should that be movez~!) are cool

I forget which board it was at but I think it was tomk who pointed out that what you're responding to isn't a talking point that anyone actually tries to argue. Nobody argues that cool moves are bad, just that cool moves by themselves do not necessarily make a great match and lack of cool moves does not make a match bad.

 

TomK on Smarkschoice:

 

I’m not really at all interested in most of what’s going on in this thread at this point.

 

But there is no one who is saying “doing moves in wrestling is a bad thing”.

No one says that.

Nowhere.

It isn’t said.

 

But it’s 2009 saying “someone is good because he/she does lots of moves” is laughable. We’ve lived through Zach Arnold pimping Tanaka and Mike Awesome as the future saviors of All Japan because “look at all the moves they do”. We can all watch Sano/Orihara v Bad Company have a terrible abortion of a matchand laugh at Meltzer giving it 3 and a quarter stars cause “look at all the moves”. You can throw a rock at any two bit indy and hit a barely trained guy who does lots and lots of moves.

 

No one says moves are bad. But we should be at the point where moves alone are not enough to pimp someone. No one says “moves automatically equals bad” wrestling but people laugh in 2009 if you think “moves automatically equals good wrestling”. You can have lots of moves and be shitty, you can have lots of moves and be good.

Not the only time this point has ever been clarified. Don't suppose it will be the last. It bears just enough resemblance to the truth that it makes for a good strawman argument, and people who use strawman arguments tend not to give up on them easily.

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I don't really agree with Rob's ultimate point there that if someone can't articulate their thoughts well, then that means they're just parroting opinions. I very strongly agree with the sentiment that I'd really like to move past the idea of criticizing someone's motives behind praising or criticizing something.

 

I thought El-P's silence was a bit deafening, because he started the whole thing and then ducked out, but I'm sure we're all guilty of that at some point.

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My bad then, I don't really trawl the wrestling internet any longer, when I was more active it was a bit of a backlash. I wholeheartedly agree with Rob's sentiments in those linked threads though.

Rob has always struck me as an OK dude. That said, not sure how defensible any of his points really were, and got the feeling that if Tom had pushed him just a little bit further, they probably would've collapsed completely.

 

Point #1: People (admittedly not Tom) are pushing the notion that having a good moveset isn't a plus for a wrestler

 

It's kinda fading away, but "these people think Mark Henry is a superworker" used to be a pretty popular strawman argument. I know there was at least one thread at DVDVR (or at least a tangent of a thread) that I ended by asking someone making this claim to point to one specific instance of someone saying this. Since there had never been an instance of that, and since admitting as much would kill a popular strawman, the thread just sort of ended so that the argument could be used another day.

 

I imagine if Tom had pressed Rob to point to an instance of someone saying that having a good moveset isn't a plus for a wrestler, I'm inclined to think he would've been stymied.

 

Point #2: Phil and Tom have sheep

 

Probably true, but he's mostly using this to support his other points, and it doesn't really work.

 

Point #3: If someone can't articulate their thoughts well, then that means they're just parroting opinions

 

Hive mentality is real, of course. And I haven't been above accusing people of having a hive mentality or having questionable motives for having certain opinions. That said, generally assume people come by their opinions honestly, and only feel the need to call that into question if there's real reason to believe otherwise. Wonder how many Segunda Caida "sheep" gave Rob real reason to call their motives into question, and how many he called into question simply because their opinions were radically different from his.

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Thing is, Rob strikes me as really apathetic about wrestling these days, and doesn't care enough to argue his points to the death. A lot of the people, who got burned out in the middle of the mass DVD era, I would wager feel the same was as him. I am certainly one of them.

 

These were pre-set opinions that are sensible and arguable (i.e Mark Henry is rubbish). The whole thing got a bit ridiculous with people calling Henry a Top 5 WWE worker and saying everyone on the roster was better than HBK (though that train of thought certainly seems to have turned), and I think people got sick of arguing these points they thought of as absurdities. Which left the people who held those opinions with nobody to argue with, and thus discussion fades etc in a cycle that has seen the wrestling internet become predictable and inactive, only lifted by DVD projects and occassional major polls.

 

This is by the by, and indeed I have digressed so much that I'm not sure what the original point was, which could well be the point.

 

To me, I think things should become more moderate. Henry is a serviceable worker. HBK is a consistently decent worker. Moves can enhance a match (ROH 2004). Overkill and too many moves without a place or reason can damage the match, and further matches on the card (ROH 2006). People resort to extreme opinions to rile people up, spice things up, look 'cool' (if this is at all possible when discussing obscure Japanese Indy wrestling matches etc), to get noticed, or merely to follow the trends started up by the likes of Phil, Tomk and other 'respected' reviewers and commentators who can do no wrong. The middle ground is usual the correct ground in the long run, and there are usually merits to both sides of an argument.

 

I've rambled too long...

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You're proving my (and Tom's, and Loss's) point.

 

The whole thing got a bit ridiculous with people calling Henry a Top 5 WWE worker

This has actually started to happen fairly recently, as Henry got even better this past year, and most anti-Henry folks have softened their stance on him accordingly.

 

However, I reiterate, this never happened back when people were actually using the "these people think Mark Henry is a superworker" strawman. Can you prove otherwise?

 

and saying everyone on the roster was better than HBK (though that train of thought certainly seems to have turned)

 

I assume you're being hyperbolic here. And the train of thought hasn't really turned, although I personally have been okay with Michaels so far this year.

 

This is by the by, and indeed I have digressed so much that I'm not sure what the original point was, which could well be the point.

Personally, I think the point was that being so offended by someone holding a different opinion from you about wrestling that you can't deal with it in a rational manner is silly, and while we've probably all been guilty of it at some point or another, we should try and be above it. To wit....

 

To me, I think things should become more moderate. Henry is a serviceable worker.

 

This was what Phil, Tom, and miscellaneous followers were actually saying. People who didn't like Mark Henry were so offended by this notion that they couldn't deal with it rationally, so they put up the "they're saying Mark Henry is a superworker" strawman. But no one was actually saying that at the time. They were saying Henry was a servicable-to-good worker. Can you prove otherwise?

 

HBK is a consistently decent worker.

 

This remains a thorny issue for a number of reasons, and I won't get into them all right now. I'll just say that in 2009, I think it's true.

 

Moves can enhance a match (ROH 2004).

 

Nobody ever said otherwise. Some people did say that moves don't always automatically enhance a match. Moves marks were so offended by this notion that they couldn't deal with it rationally, so they put up the "they're saying moves are bad" strawman. But no one actually says that. They just say that moves don't always automatically enhance a match. Can you prove otherwise?

 

People resort to extreme opinions to rile people up, spice things up, look 'cool' (if this is at all possible when discussing obscure Japanese Indy wrestling matches etc), to get noticed, or merely to follow the trends started up by the likes of Phil, Tomk and other 'respected' reviewers and commentators who can do no wrong.

 

Not in the way and not to the extent that you claim. Can you prove otherwise?

 

The middle ground is usual the correct ground in the long run, and there are usually merits to both sides of an argument.

Aside from the Michaels thing, your "middle ground" opinions were Phil's and Tom's side of the argument. Can you prove otherwise?

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QUOTE

People resort to extreme opinions to rile people up, spice things up, look 'cool' (if this is at all possible when discussing obscure Japanese Indy wrestling matches etc), to get noticed, or merely to follow the trends started up by the likes of Phil, Tomk and other 'respected' reviewers and commentators who can do no wrong.

 

 

Not in the way and not to the extent that you claim. Can you prove otherwise?

Some of the people at WKO. Especially Luis who I like but he's basically a Mike Sheep.

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I think the idea that agreeing with someone in order to look cool is awfully cynical.

 

I will cop to seeing something written by Phil, Tom, jdw, Dylan Waco, goodhelmet, Meltzer, Bix, Kevin Cook, S.L.L., and probably other people and it shaping my opinion. That doesn't mean I'm incapable of forming my own opinion. That means that someone made a compelling argument that made sense to me, and I decided I agreed with it. In the middle of a message board debate, I might have made the exact same point previously made because it fit the circumstances.

 

I would say if you're someone who's never experienced such a thing, why post on message boards at all? The whole point is the interaction.

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However, I reiterate, this never happened back when people were actually using the "these people think Mark Henry is a superworker" strawman. Can you prove otherwise?

No, since I'm not prepared to trawl through tons of old threads, many of which are on forums that no longer exist anymore. It's just the way I remember it.

 

I assume you're being hyperbolic here. And the train of thought hasn't really turned, although I personally have been okay with Michaels so far this year.

Well most people seemed to go pretty crazy about the Wrestlemania match (which wasn't any level above what he's done in other post comeback years) so I think things are changing. Again, I don't know enough.

 

They were saying Henry was a servicable-to-good worker. Can you prove otherwise?

Again, I remember it otherwise, but to prove it so would be a long and tedious process. I recall Phil and Tomk saying Henry was decent, and the bandwagon jumpers going crazy and overexaggerating him completely. The problem starts when people start saying, and I quote, "people who don't like Mark Henry don't like him because he's fat, black and sweaty".

 

So far we've proved I can't/won't prove anything. Can you prove that they weren't calling him one of the best workers in the company?

 

But no one actually says that.

(Regarding Moves)

 

Well, not in as many words, but if you put in a search for 'moves~!' or whatever on the DVDVR (for instance) search engine, I'm sure you would find hundreds of results. The phrase itself applies ridicule in the way it's executed, and the refusal of people to accept that others didn't like Jerry Lawler matches because his offence was shit.

 

Not in the way and not to the extent that you claim. Can you prove otherwise?

Possibly. One example is the Mayweather/Show match, which was good for novelty value but nowhere near MOTY type quality. Phil offers profuse praise, next thing you know it's on all his readers' MOTY lists. The same thing with the John Cena arguments. I'm sure if you go back to Non-Stick era DVDVR you will dinf the majority criticising him.

 

Can you prove people don't follow their opinions?

 

Aside from the Michaels thing, your "middle ground" opinions were Phil's and Tom's side of the argument. Can you prove otherwise?

Can you prove otherwise?

 

I would say if you're someone who's never experienced such a thing, why post on message boards at all? The whole point is the interaction.

It's counter-productive though, because once everyone agrees with Phil or Tomk or anyone...well, the interaction stops. The argument about Cena being a great worker is a major example of a thing where now, you're not allowed to have a constructive argument in many places on the issue, because you will either get ridiculed for liking him (he sucks, no offence, no variation etc) or in some quarters (DVDVR) you will get ridiculed for not liking him ('sorry he doesn't do enough movez~!', 'if you don't like Cena you don't like wrestling' etc).

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They were saying Henry was a servicable-to-good worker. Can you prove otherwise?

Again, I remember it otherwise, but to prove it so would be a long and tedious process. I recall Phil and Tomk saying Henry was decent, and the bandwagon jumpers going crazy and overexaggerating him completely. The problem starts when people start saying, and I quote, "people who don't like Mark Henry don't like him because he's fat, black and sweaty".

There were people using euphemisms for fat, black, and/or sweaty.
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What is really being discussed here is the trend in smark circles toward a hardcore wrestling revisionism. To some degree Phil and tom are at the forefront of this, although jdw and others who have very different views on wrestling in general have been major contributors to the mindset.

 

I think sometimes smarks forget that this whole network of tape trading, message boards, mass downloading, et. was basically started by a very small group of wrestling geeks who ran the newsletters and traded tapes with each other. Consensus wasn't formed in mass. It was formed on the words of those who had access to the footage and a means of propagandizing a broader readership into accepting whatever they were touting as "the best ever" that week.

 

This started to change with the internet, but it has changed dramatically in the age of mass downloads, youtube, WWE 24/7, et. When you've got guys putting out multiple disc sets on various companies and wrestlers, it becomes increasingly hard for the priestly caste of "consensus" superfans to declare that certain "truisims" are in fact beyond question. Suddenly it became possible for people to say that Bob Backlund really didn't suck (John), Butch Reed really was better than Kurt Angle (Will) and Lucha wasn't a bunch of flippy midgets practicing gymnastics in a ring (tom, Phil, et.) while being able to point to tons of easy to get footage to back up their claims.

 

On the surface this is good, but there is a bad side to this. I do think you get people desperate to carve out a niche who will advocate for things that aren't terribly good just for the sake of being "different." But this is a fairly small number of people and getting into discussions of motivations really is a dead end (especially because the point Loss makes is one I share).

 

Last year I wrote this article http://www.amconmag.com/article/2008/dec/01/00023/ for The American Conservative magazine about the revisionist historians Gabriel Kolko and William Appleman Williams. These were men who dedicated their professional careers to tearing down established myths about American history. Though Kolko and Williams were second wave revisionist, they helped to establish a canon of historical thought that is very important and widely respected today.

 

On the other hand there are so called "revisionists" historians who claim the holocaust didn't happen or believe "the Jews" were behind 9/11.

 

The point is that first group is bigger, more interesting, and more important. Associating them with the 2nd group isn't fair and isn't a fair representation of the views and attitudes that motivate the them.

 

The same can be said with the wrestling revisionist as well.

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Last year I wrote this article http://www.amconmag.com/article/2008/dec/01/00023/ for The American Conservative magazine about the revisionist historians

Good article. In England, I have written that this problem here stems from University Professor's having to publish by requirement at least two research papers/journal articles a year, and it is generally specified that it is on a new subject. Since most of history has been exhausted, many have to come up with new hypothesis and theories that they may not believe just to satisfy their establishments.

 

This is not restricted to academics, since many populist historians fall into the trap of constantly searching for a new angle. In some cases, such as the re-evaluation of Richard III it is perhaps a good thing, but only if it is backed by strong research and is not merely theory for theories sake.

 

To relate this to wrestling, Dylan's post made a lot of sense; new angles being presented to make new talking points, or simply to have something to say.

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QUOTE

People resort to extreme opinions to rile people up, spice things up, look 'cool' (if this is at all possible when discussing obscure Japanese Indy wrestling matches etc), to get noticed, or merely to follow the trends started up by the likes of Phil, Tomk and other 'respected' reviewers and commentators who can do no wrong.

 

 

Not in the way and not to the extent that you claim. Can you prove otherwise?

Some of the people at WKO. Especially Luis who I like but he's basically a Mike Sheep.

 

Mike is a guy who's opinions are definitely in line with Phil's and Tom's for the most part and who's wrestling aesthetic is largely informed by theirs. That said, definitely a guy who can form his own opinions.

 

http://z11.invisionfree.com/wrestling_ko/i...?showtopic=2167

 

Yeah, his reasons for not liking Quackenbush are kinda Phil-ish. Obviously a guy coming from the same place as Phil. Still him forming a completely opposing view to Phil's. Such is the case with most of the board.

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However, I reiterate, this never happened back when people were actually using the "these people think Mark Henry is a superworker" strawman. Can you prove otherwise?

No, since I'm not prepared to trawl through tons of old threads, many of which are on forums that no longer exist anymore. It's just the way I remember it.

You remember it wrong.

 

I assume you're being hyperbolic here. And the train of thought hasn't really turned, although I personally have been okay with Michaels so far this year.

Well most people seemed to go pretty crazy about the Wrestlemania match (which wasn't any level above what he's done in other post comeback years) so I think things are changing. Again, I don't know enough.

Eh, guys like me really liked his Cena matches in 2007, too. Not terribly uncommon for Shawn to have one or two matches a year that pass muster. Less common that he has more. I haven't even seen the Taker match yet, but pretty much everything else he's done this year seems at least serviceable, so I tend to lay off of him now.

 

They were saying Henry was a servicable-to-good worker. Can you prove otherwise?

Again, I remember it otherwise, but to prove it so would be a long and tedious process.

 

Finding and posting one thing would be a long and tedious process if you didn't know where to look, or if it was an elusive, largely isolated incident. But if there were all these bandwagon jumpers making these claims like you say there were, it should be a fast trip through the DVDVR search engine.

 

So far we've proved I can't/won't prove anything. Can you prove that they weren't calling him one of the best workers in the company?

Technically yes, however....

 

1. The burden of proof is on the accuser

2. The accused is considered innocent until proven guilty

3. You can't prove a negative

4. Proving this specific negative would require posting every single thing ever written about Mark Henry in that period, so as to show there was never any single incident of someone calling him a top-flight worker, which is not a reasonable request, especially not in comparison to what I asked of you, which you were unwilling/unable to do

 

But no one actually says that.

(Regarding Moves)

 

Well, not in as many words, but if you put in a search for 'moves~!' or whatever on the DVDVR (for instance) search engine, I'm sure you would find hundreds of results. The phrase itself applies ridicule in the way it's executed, and the refusal of people to accept that others didn't like Jerry Lawler matches because his offence was shit.

The matter in question, which you cut out, was whether or not people say that having a large set of moves that you can execute well isn't a good thing. Nobody says that.

Not in the way and not to the extent that you claim. Can you prove otherwise?

Possibly. One example is the Mayweather/Show match, which was good for novelty value but nowhere near MOTY type quality.

 

You say that like it's an indisputable fact.

 

Phil offers profuse praise, next thing you know it's on all his readers' MOTY lists.

 

I thought it was a MOTYC before I even knew what Phil had to say about it. I'm sure other people of similar minds felt the same way. If you don't look at it from the viewpoint that Show/Mayweather is indisputably not a MOTYC, and that it is factually impossible to think otherwise, it's not all that unreasonable.

 

The same thing with the John Cena arguments. I'm sure if you go back to Non-Stick era DVDVR you will dinf the majority criticising him.

Indeed they did, but the fact that others in the minority came around to Cena doesn't necessarily mean they were brainwashed by Phil. They might have just agreed that Cena was improving.

 

Can you prove people don't follow their opinions?

I never said they didn't, just not in the way or to the extent that you think. You can't/won't prove otherwise.

 

Aside from the Michaels thing, your "middle ground" opinions were Phil's and Tom's side of the argument. Can you prove otherwise?

Can you prove otherwise?

"NO U" is a really shitty tactic for you to be using, but at least this one isn't asking me to prove a negative.

 

This is TomK in March 2006, pretty deep into the Henry re-evaluation period:

 

Henry is NOT a superworker. NOT A SUPERWORKER. He needs more offense. He had two matches with Rey...one built around Rey's offense and Henry's selling and the second built around Henry's offense and Rey's bumping. the better match was the first one by alot. Undertaker match was built around teases of Henry's big offensive moves but it was about the big moves not the secondary moves...as Henry needs more secondary stuff.

Not only Tom explicitly stating that Henry wasn't a superworker but saying one big reason he wasn't a superworker was because he lacked offense. That's two from one paragraph, and it wasn't exactly hard to find. Can you match that?

 

There were people using euphemisms for fat, black, and/or sweaty.

I'm sure S.L.L. will be asking you to prove it. Wait...

I don't have to ask him. I can do it myself.

 

Here's Rob Naylor himself - a dude I have nothing but love for - from the very same thread I took the above quote from.

 

Henry = Fat unmotivated fuck who Vince can't wait to cut on December 31st from these ten years of hell.

Technically not proof of Bix's claim since Rob didn't use a euphemism for "fat". Still, there it is. Again, not the herculean task you made it out to be. But then, I actually had proof to find.

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But if there were all these bandwagon jumpers making these claims like you say there were, it should be a fast trip through the DVDVR search engine.

Wasn't most of the material in the ridiculous "Mark Henry has somehow become the fulcrum of wrestling talking points" on DVDVR lost during the purge of non-stick wrestling?

 

Sadly we also lost such gems as the "Kane vs. Abyss, who is a better worker" thread, and the "pictures of women in wrestling bleeding as fetish porn" thread.

 

Can't say I miss it much.

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I actually enjoyed the back and forth over Angle and Michaels initially when good points were being made, but it always evolved into a 30-page flame war with people overstating their case to make a point, which got old. I'm sure I did my share of participating in that, so I'm definitely not criticizing anyone.

 

There is no wrestler more frustrating to discuss than Shawn Michaels, because those who criticize him go too far, and those who praise him go too far. He's very polarizing.

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