Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Whore's Glory

Whore's Glory is a street level documentary covering prostitutes in Bangladesh, Thailand and Mexico- pulling no punches this is a look at the hard lives of living off your body in 3 different cultures and settings, in Thailand the girls punch in on a timeclock , in Bangladesh the ladies line the narrow  hallways and  pester the johns for a trick and in Mexico the women work on the street in front of small dirty rooms hoping to score enough money. The good the bad and the ugly are shown in this movie. Although the Asian segments feature no sex nor nudity-the Mexican segment features the entire transaction from negotiation to actual sex .

Probably not for everyone , but interesting.    B-

Monday, January 14, 2013

Zero Dark Thirty

Zero Dark Thirty - the modern Where's Waldo with spoilers provided by John Cena and Fox News. A well made movie with little actual fire. Sure the previous movie by the Oscar winning director Bigelow was set in the post 9-11 world in a war-time setting , but this goal driven game of hide and seek lacks in emotional investment in any of the shallow characters, yes I know who the bad guy is and why I should care- but this marathon of a movie felt like a chore to sit thru. And it ain't the fact that I know how the story ends bugs me- I was really invested in United 93 and knew how that rolled. We go from torture to survelliance to home invasion but somehow the whole exercise felt lacking and not worth revisiting, C-

Congrats to Kamala who may be inducted in the WWE Hall of Fame this year- here is an interview with Kamala from 2008 - very nice guy - also on the show interviews with Johnny Rodz and April Hunter.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Why Wrestling from 2008

Why rasslin’ ????

 
 
 
Wrestling? What wrestling do you watch?Do you go to indie shows?WWE? TNA if they have hit your town yet?
What percentage of your friends watch?

I watch wrestling for the mix of spectacle & athleticism.I watch out of curiousity and inertia.I watch to see new moves and to to be surprised(although that happens less and less).I watch hoping for sublime moments like last Monday’s tribute to Flair or ridiculous comedy like last year’s TNA Turkey Bowl.I have been fascinated by the absurdity of the backstage politics since I got the internet in late 1997 and was an avid reader of Scott Keith and the Pro Wrestling Torch( the pop-ups for that site nowadays are so annoying) for years.I love big moments- like Sting finally attacking the nWo after the Uncensored PPV or the ring breaking after the Lesnar superplex on Big Show.I love the sophmoric humour(Bachelor Party is one of my fave movies- so is Road House)- Wrestlecrap continues to fascinate me-from the absolute time capsule cornball comedy of GLOW to the various Villanos.
I watch Impact and Raw every week- I usually record Smackdown and watch it later on -so I can edit out the commercials- I watch ECWsci-fi- but more cuz it is on right before the podcast.My fave wrestling to watch -well - the process of editing my videotapes from the Monday Night Wars to DVD-r and DVDs of old school and indie wrestling.My curiousity about the backstage shenigans have led me to buy most of the wrestling books out there-I have some kayfabe photo books from the 80s- but I have alot of the biographies and stuff like Hardcore History and Wrestlecrap Book of Lists!
I started watching wrestling in 1977- even then my stepdad mocked my fascination with a sport "that everyone knew was fake".But I was hooked - Mid-Atlantic Championship wrestling was the show I was lucky enough to start with- the territory had Ric Flair,Greg Valentine,Paul Jones,BlackJack Mulligan,Wahoo McDaniel,Rick Steamboat,Jay Youngblood, "The Boogie Woogie Man" Jimmy Valiant and so many others.The guy that hooked me was Roddy Piper- his crazy charisma,his ability to implode at just the right moment in the match and his promos made me a fan even before he was a face.I was hooked and started getting the wrestling magazines- that feed into the mystique of the
territories- I was aware of AWA and WWF and wrestlers from around the country- so when some like say the Great Kabuki would appear on Mid-Atlantic TV I could not wait- I think we get overexposed to talent because they have the same people year after year on the top of the card-although there are several main eventers that have left WWE in the past few years.
I remember Abbdullah carving up Dusty on TV in action so "graphic" that they had to run a negative image of the event- I remember watching Thunderlips in a Rocy movie- I thought it was fun- but I was a Piper fan- I did not have cable until 1996 so I missed alot of stuff
I kept up with wrestling by renting videotapes , buying magazines and some books- I vividly remember the Flair vs Funk fued form 1989 because someone would play the videotapes at the afterhours club I was DJing at .I remember getting quarter rolls and going to play wrestling video games for hours on end in the late 80s. I remember going to a local flea market and seeing indie shows for several months in 1992-even booking one of the grapplers to be a MC for one of my concerts.I remember borrowing my best friend’s copy of Royal Rumble for Sega Genisis and playing for months- although it only took being Lex Luger and his bionic clothesline to win the game .
When I really got re-hooked was the Monday Night Wars- I had gotten cable and was flipping channels - and Roddy Piper was on- sure the matches that followed where the drizzling craps-but the promos were the bomb- and to top it off - Piper and WCW were coming to town- WW3 1996- I was lucky enough to have front row seats- that was a blast- nothing tops the experience of being front row center for a 60 man battle royal + a Piper/Hogan contract signing + STING!!!! coming from the ceiling.After that I was getting the magazines every month - a year later I was able to use my writing experience to get a backstage pass to a WWF houseshow the month after the Montreal screwjob and I got to interview several WWF superstars- blah blah blah - the Monday Night Wars were me and my best friend watching while being on the phone and switching from one show and back all night long.I remember having PPV parties- the best attended ones where the Rodman Bash at the Beaches- lol. I usually went to other folks places for WWF events
Now I usually have friends over for Raw and videogames every Monday night- I tend to go to sportsbars for the WWE PPVs- cuz the crowds usually enhance even the worst matches.

I have a lot of friends into wrestling- but even so I would put it at 50% into wrestling and 50% of my friends can’t understand my fascination with grappling.
I go to indie shows- I have been to several Nitros,Raws,Smackdowns, Great American Bash 2004- I have been to a couple of house shows- the upside of house shows- the action is continous - the downside - they don’t matter in the storyline sense.I missed the ECW shows that came to town because of work and I did go to the TNA PPV that came to town in March.
Wrestling when it is done well is the best entertainment,when done very badly it can be very entertaining.My problem will continue to be the middle part- when it is running on nuetral-when we have week after week of Chuck Palumbo vs Noble matches- but I continue to watch hoping for the next fun moment-


 

Even more movie reviews from 2008

The Anderson Tapes


The Anderson Tapes (1971) - Well made caper flick about an ex-con played by Sean Connery who decides to put together a crew to shakedown a ritzy apartment building.With a solid cast including Ralph Meeker,Garrett Morris and the debut of Christopher Walken.The story is told in a compact 99 minutes by director Sidney Lumet- a mix of action and gritty humor- recommended if you like caper flicks with a noirsih touch. B-


The Public Eye


The Public Eye is a solid throwback movie- made in 1992 - we follow Joe Pesci who plays a shutterbug who knows everyone in the big apple during World War II and has taken their picture at one time or another. Obsessed with always getting the perfect picture- the photographer starts his day at midnight and trolls the city with the use of his police scanner.Known for never taking sides Bernstien(Joe Pesci) finally falls for the attractive owner of Cafe Society(Barbara Hershey).Of course with his guard down he gets in the middle of a conspiracy.If you are a fan of film noir you should enjoy this neo-noir offering- also fans of the Sopranos look for Heche & Jr. in the movie.A good mix of action and emotion- worth checking out if you still have a VHS(not out on DVD) B+

Stalag 17


This 1953 movie may have spawned the goofy Hogan’s Heroes- but this flick is playing for keeps.Written and directed by Billy Wilder with cinematography by Ernest Lazslo the movie captures the ambience of a WW2 P.O.W. camp.William Holden won an Oscar for his excellent performance as the King Rat of the barracks.Worth a Netflix slot.The movie is a little burdened by the "wacky" duo of Animal & Shapiro- but don’t let that keep you from enjoying a classic from one of Hollywood’s best directors. A-

Movie reviews from 2008

Let The Right One In


Let The Right One In -this highly effective Swedish movie is well worth the Netflix slot.Sure it has a slower start- but you can watch this dubbed or subbed.We follow a young boy who is an outsider who befriends his mysterious neighbor.The neighbor is a Vampire.The boy is continously picked on by bullies - his one true friend is the odd person who he talks to at night.Mix a great score with some superb mayhem and a solid plot set in the 80s and you have the ingredients for a solid waking nightmare.While this movie does have moments of graphic violence- the other thing that makes this a standout film is the implied carnage at key points.This offbeat vampire DVD has a 7 minute behind the scenes featurette and some deleted scenes. A-


The Shape of Things to Come


The Shape of Things To Come -This adaptation of a H.G. Wells story is worthy of MST3K commentary.You have Oscar winner Jack Palance as a mad scientist who is blackmailing a moon colony with killer robots.You also have bad acting,cheap special effects,a synth driven score and bad fight scenes.If you like cheesey dated sci-fi check this movie out- if you value logic,fast paced action and witty dialogue skip this movie. D
 

The Naked Kiss


The Naked Kiss - This 1964 Samuel Fuller flick is captivating cinema from the explosive first sequence until the improbable climax.We follow a traveling salesperson on the run- her product Angel Foam is a front for her real inventory-herself.After one final unfulfilling transaction she decides to become a nurse and settle down in a small town.Of course things are never that easy and her checkered past keeps interjecting itself into her storybook new life.Well worth the time- sure the movie is dated- but that is part of the charm of this superb fable. A
 
 

In A Lonely Place


In A Lonely Place - the first movie from Humphrey Bogart's production company is superb.Bogart is on fire- by not tearing up the scenary- he carries each scene he is in- going from charming to brooding at the exact right moment with a look,a gesture.One of my favorite Bogart performances is in this dark Nicholas Ray directed movie.He plays Dixon Steele- a proud writer who wants to write quality in a hollywood system obsessed with quantity and popcorn sales.Needing work he enlists a coatcheck girl to give him the Cliff Notes verion of the latest novel he is assigned to adapt for the silver screen.But when she turns up dead the next morning- he is suspect number one.At the same time he falls in love with his alibi Gloria Grahame.Is the complex Dixon Steele a murder or just a victim of circumstance.Worth owning or at least Netflixxing. A +
 
 

Slaughter Hotel


Slaughter Hotel -This 70s exploitation flick mixes softcore sexiness with an ax-murder in an asylum for sexy women that seem to like to masturbate naked.Klaus Kinski plays a doctor who has a crush on one of the lovely ladies.Rosabla Neri & Margaret Lee lead the cast of lovely victims.The plot is pretty typical for a slasher movie - nothing new.The DVD has a 10 minute interview with the director.If you like the grindhouse mix of sex and violence- check out Thriller & Sex and Fury . C+
 
 

California Split


California Split -Solid Altman flick from the 70s about 2 compulsive gamblers.Elliot Gould and George Segal are the leads in this flick .They meet at a poker game and form a bond as they broker new scams and fall into differing hardships.This movie is not perfect- but it does a great job of showing the greed and despair and the buzz of gambling.The DVD has a commentary track by Altman and the 2 leads.If you like Altman's style then you may dig this raw look at addiction. B+
Teen Witch -one of those flicks that has a cult following- this movie has a good energy to it- we follow a brainy teen that wants the school hunk to notice her.Then Louise Miller played by Robin Lively finds out that she is a witch.This movie is part musical,part slapstick comedy and plenty of fun for a low budget teen flick.This PG-13 flick is good fodder for the tweener set having a sleepover. B-

Assault of the Killer Bimbos - 2 go-go dancers and a greasy spoon waitress flee to Mexico to avoid the law and a murder rap.This made for laughs boobie flick is decent for one viewing- it has enough cheesey ,bad dialogue and gratitious nudity to make this a decent exploitation flick- but probably not something for the DVD collection. C-

Dot and the Kangaroo - Well done 70's Aussie flick about a girl that gets lost in the Bush.This movie mixes animated people and animals with a live background- although crude by today's standards- the story and the character make this a worthwhile investment of time .Dot is befriended by a female Kangaroo that helps her find her way home-on the way she meets many musical animals.Not for everybody- but a good family friendly movie about Australian animals. A-

Like Water for Chocolate


Like Water for Chocolate - this Spanish language flick was one of the most successful foreign films- but to me it was a mix of Rochelle,Rochelle softcore sensuality with a mix of terrible family traditions and a star crossed love .The main character was likeable enough and I understood her frustration with her mother- but her lame love interest annoyed me( he marries her sister to be close to her and off course that leads to lots of hurt feelings).This arthouse flick is not something that I will revisit- the only extra on this disc was a really lame dub job in English. C

The Bronx is Burning


The Bronx is Burning : well done ESPN mini-series about the tumultous 1977 New York Yankees.John Turturro does a solid job as the fiesty manager Billy Martin and Kevin Conway captures Gabe Paul perfectly.I am still not sold on Oliver Platt as Steinbrenner- he did an okay job-but then again Steinbrenner is such a cartoon it is hard to portray someone like that without chewing up some scenery.This miniseries focuses on the Yankees chase for the pennant and the New York mayoral contest,the Son of Sam killings and the urban wasteland that the Big Apple was during the late 70s.The show mixes historical footage with the actors.Other movies that really capture that period of NYC are The Taking of Pelham One Two Three and Taxi Driver.The DVD collection has a good third discs with featurettes about the Fenway dugout brawl and the straw that stirs the drink.If you want to read more about the Bronx Bombers check out the sarcastic and fun The Bronx Zoo by reliever Sparky Lyle and Peter Golenbock that chronicles the even more tumultous 1978 season of the Yankees. B+
Punk:Attitude : This Don Letts documentary about the punk scene,fashion and music seems to focus on the early and formative years of punk from Brando in The Wild One to the Velvet Underground,MC5 to the Pistols to the CBGB bands of the 70s- they talk about later bands like Bad Brains and Dead Kennedys- but really tend to glass thru much of the 80s- still it was an interesting flick with plenty of insight from folks that were there at the beginning and footage of classic bands.Worth a Netflix if you are interested in that scene and have a passing knowledge of the music and it's roots- but nothing worth owning. B-

Perepolis -This animated adaptation of the Marjane Strapi graphic novel is gripping from the first scene.We follow the life of an Iranian female during the Iranian revolution and Iran/Iraq war.The animation is groundbreaking in it's simplicity- mostly black and white it captures the bleak life of being a free spirited girl in a fundamentalist country.The DVD has a well done dubbed in English track along with it's original French language track-it also has a behind the scenes featurette and scene specific commentary.If you like animated movies that are Disneyfied you should seek this movie out ASAP. A

the ONION Movie :Capturing the irrevance of the Onion in the tradition of classic skit movies like Kentucky Fried Movie & Groove Tube this movie is a mix of parodies and fake news segments.Maybe not a homerun- but worth a rental if you like satire mixed with bathroom humor.This movie features the best use of Stephen Segal I have ever seen(ok I have managed to not see most of his movies). B-

A Kiss Before Dying


A Kiss Before Dying -this hamhanded 1956 melodrama stars Robert Wagner as a wealth obsessed college student who impregnates a wealthy co-ed(Joanne Woodward) and then decides to kill her.After he fakes her suicide- he decides to turn his attention to her sister.Ridiculous plot turns and pre-CSI forensics make this a chore to watch.The lone feature on the DVD was a trailer for the movie. D-


City for Conquest


City For Conquest - this 1940 Warner Brothers movie gets the full treatment for it 's DVD release- featuring Warner Brother's night at the movies- you can watch a vintage cartoon,news reel,trailer and short before the main movie.This Cagney picture is not my favorite-but it is a decent flick buoyed by the pluckish Anne Sheridan as an ambitous dancer and love interest for Cagney.Cagney plays a humble boxer with a quick left.But this is not your average boxing flick- it is a melodrama about success and fame and the price of following your dreams.A young Anthony Quinn plays Sheridan's dance partner and famed director (On The Waterfront,Splendor in the Grass) Elia Kazan plays a boyhood chum who becomes a wiseguy.The movie itself rates a B- -but the extras which include a commentary by Richard Shickel and the 1940 blooper reel is at least a B+ for fans of classic hollywood.

Jun 14, 2008

The Happening


The Happening - ok I got swept up in the hype and the 8 1/2 falling thing in the trailer- either way I actually went to the theater to see the latest M. Night Shalayman flick.I did not hate the movie- but it felt like it lacked closure and had gratitious death scenes in it - so it ended up being a rather frustrating experience-the best character in the movie appears in the final act and feels out of place with the rest of the movie.Instead of a happening - we get 90 minutes of vaguely random scenes.Not worth more than a matinee ticket. C-


Jun 7, 2008

The One and Only


The One and Only -This 70s flick about a full blown ham who can't choose between being a wrestler or married.Henry Winkler charms his way thru this Carl Reiner flick about a young man that settles for wrestling when he can't succeed as an actor in the Big Apple in the fifties.Chavo Classic makes a brief appearance as Indian Joe and Roddy Pipper has a non-speaking role as Leatherneck Joe Brady and Gene Labell,Herve Villachez,William Daniels round out the cast.Gene Saks does a good job as the old school agnet/manager type-all borscht-belt schtick and lost of fun.Winkler seems to be channeling a less nuerotic Woodie Allen in this flick- sure he is charming- but sometimes you feel like he is blind to the world around him.A fun look at wrestling in the beginning of television- but the movie is less about wrestling and more about Winkler's character's desire to be loved by strangers.A decent time capsule-this dated movie will be a good curio for rasslin' fans. C+

Annie Hall -A nuerotic comedian(Woodie Allen) looks back on his relationship with Annie Hall(Diane Keaton).Breaking the fourth wall at times and mixing in memories from his past- Allen weaves a funny story- hard to believe this won the Oscar for best picture- but this still has plenty of comedy that holds up. B-
Clash of Titans - Unintentional comedy,wooden acting and odd effects make this an easy target for MST3K types.Harry Hamlin is the dullard protaginist-seriously he looks either stoned or stupified for most of the movie.He is the pawn for an ego driven game of chess between the immortals(Zues,etc.)This is a fun watch in spite of itself. C-

ended up going to see Iron Man -good shot em stuff- but I really wanted to fast forward most of the dialogue- Downey was decent as Tony Stark and sometimes his schtick was funny - but in the end I did not feel like I have seen anything new- an ok diversion - but nothing lasting- disposable entertainment
Saw some decent DVDs this week- Payday - a well made low budget 1973 flick about a touring country singer(Rip Torn)- a mixture of comedy,drama and tons of absurdity- if you like epic sword and sandals flicks - you should at least Netflix The Fall of the Roman Empire -directed by Anthony Mann and starring James Mason,Christopher Plummer,Sophia Loren,Alec Guniess and others- worth seeking out

Southland Tales


Southland Tales -I watched the latest DVD release featuring Dwayne Johnson(formerly the Rock)- an interesting post apocalyptic story set in the near future where America is still reeling from a nuclear terrorist attack and has put the country under martial law.The cast list is virtual where are they now mix of SNL alum(Jon Lovitz,Cheri O'Terri,Nora Dunn),Wallace Shawn,Sarah Michelle Gellar(Buffy as a porn star),Christopher Lambert ,Will Sasso,John Laroquette,Justin Timberlake and others.
The plot is little convulted- something about Fluid Karma,revelations,extortion and time travel and the movie is rather long- 2 hours and 21 minutes. It is a definite odd movie with some random dance sequences,parody commercials and a floating van. If you like head-trip movies like The Wall or sci-fi stuff you may enjoy this one- but if you are looking for a typical action flick this will probably annoy you.The DVD has a 30 minute featurette and a 10 minute cartoon as extras.I liked the movie- but I tend to like stuff that is a little out of the norm.

C+


  • The Steel Helmet


    The Steel Helmet - this 1951 Samuel Fuller flick is dedicated to the grunts(the Infantry).Set in Korea during the war- this movie was filmed in Los Angeles for $100,000- but don't let that deter you from seeking out this intense and gritty movie.From the stunning opening sequence to the raw dialogue that tackles racism to the intense battle scenes this is a good combat flick.Gene Evans is the gruff Sergeant Zack- he holds the movie together with his solid performance. Fuller does a good job making Griffith Park look like the Korean countryside- the main set piece is a Buddhist Temple- he does a good job making the temple seem foreign- it is obvious that Fuller likes Eastern culture(another great flick from him is 1955's House of Bamboo set in post World War II Tokyo).If you like character driven war movies like Men in War you should enjoy this early effort from Samuel Fuller. A
  • Apr 13, 2008

    Masters of the Universe


    Masters of the Universe -this 1987 live action adaptation of the popular 80s cartoon features Dolph Lundgren as He-Man.This movie wants to be a big epic success- the opening theme by Bill Conti is a sonic mix of John William's themes to Superman & Star Wars and the opening credits have the same feel..Sadly this movie lacks even the pop culture originality of those movies.Not cheesey enough to mock continously(ok we mocked it anyhow) nor heroic enough to enjoy as a super-hero flic. Skeletor(played by Frank Langella) has seized castle GreySkull and imprisoned a socceress.With odds against him He-Man utitlizes a universal gateway made by Billy Barty to jump to smalltown in rural America.Courteney Cox is the smalltown girl who is about to break up with her boyfriend and musician Robert Duncan McNeil(Tom Paris from Star Trek Voyager).Anyhow there is fighting and fish out of water or Tarzan in New York hijinx padding out the movie.An obvious attempt to cash-in on a show.A mixture of terrible special effects with lame dialogue- not worth


    Wednesday, January 09, 2013

    Cleanflix , wrestling and more

    Watched Cleanflix today on Netflix streaming - interesting documentary about the intersection of censorship , religion and greed.



    Then like an insane couch potato I watched all of Season 2 of the Wire- amazing season. Superlatives are deserved for the supporting cast , the writers, everything - just the best TV show ever. One stomach punch after another , mixed with subtle and not so subtle humor, great acting and a great ensemble. Wrestling tie-in Vladimir Kozlov is an extra seen in several episodes in a none speaking role.



    Kudos to the baseball writers leaving the steriod class out of the Hall of Fame- Cooperstown should have a Hall of Shame wing- with the Black Sox , Sosa , Big Mac and Clemens -  I don't know . I loathe steriods and the human wreckage that has littered the wrestling landscape due to the shortcuts and desire to have insane unrealistic physiques.

    I was underwhelmed by Monday's Raw- sure the Rock and Punk delivered big ratings- best since August - but neither promo was something that will ring out for me in 2 months -no less at the end of the year.

    Still have TNA British Boot Camp third episode to watch- first 2 episodes were pretty entertaining.

    The Pope indicated via Twitter that he has left TNA.

    follow me on twitter @jobberjoe99



    For wrestling news and reviews and my Raw review check out  Wrestle Hustle

    Tuesday, January 08, 2013

    The Hunger Games



    Take several elements of reality TV and sci-fi and mix them into a well made tween blender with a solid leading actress and you have a hit movie. Hunger Games was ok-but felt like such an un-original rehash of concepts like Running Man and a bit of the Lord of the Flies that I felt like I had consumed a meal of empty calories. OK diversion but nothing worth owning or revisiting- although I am curious about the universe and what will happen in the next 2 parts of the triology. C+




    Wednesday, January 02, 2013

    This is 40 and a lookback at Pro Wrestling in 2012

    This is 40 is a  charming comedy about 2 overgrown children about to turn 40. Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann do a good job as parents trying to make their way around life while raising 2 children and running their own businesses. Rudd is running a boutique record label that showcases artists that he loves that are past their prime. The movie benefits from a fun supporting class including Megan Fox , Melissa McCarthy , Albert Brooks and Graham Parker. Bawdy at times and featuring some nudity this R-rated movie may not be fun for the whole family but I enjoyed it. While not something I would rush out to see again or own on DVD it was a fun little diversion as a matinee and well worth a Netflix slot when it hits retail.   B-



    Fiscal Cliff Diving is over, Yolo is so pre-Mayan Apocalypse....




    2012

    Highs and lows and consistently inconsistent – that was pro wrestling in 2012. CM Punk held the WWE title the entire year while the World Heavyweight title was lost and won in record times by various grapplers. The simplicity of What was trumped by the duplicity of Yes and No. While the divas devolved into eye candy – 3 of the most popular divas left WWE – the Bella twins and Kelly Kelly. While John Cena was the focal point of many storylines, his character suffered many setbacks including a loss to the Rock at Wrestlemania. My favorite match of the year was the brutal match between Brock Lesnar and John Cena the following month. On the downside John Cena was one of many guys kissing the skipping  AJ Lee.

    Raw went to 3 hours after its 1000th episode and WWE also added a Saturday morning show and Main Event on Wednesdays.  After Summer Slam I stopped making an effort to see PPVs- I lost my motivation. I am simply not invested in the characters enough to leave my home to see the matches. Of course I will be watching during the run-up to Mania since I love the Royal Rumble and like Elimination Chamber.

    After being immersed in pro wrestling 2011 – I stepped back in 2012; truth is I got a day job and a night job. I left the day job in December of 2012 with the goal of focusing on wrestling in 2013- we shall see. TNA lost me after Bound for Glory- I just simply stopped watching – probably as much for the day the show ran- truthfully I stopped watching Smackdown as much because I am busier on the weekends than weekdays.

    ROH had the same problem although I watched more of their product than TNA – I am surprised they buried their December PPV Final Battle at 3 pm on an NFL Sunday.

    The internet increased access to international grappling and documentaries. The BBC ran a superb albeit too short documentary called when Wrestling was golden focusing on wrestling in the United Kingdom from the 60s through the 90s. PBS had an informative documentary about lucha libre entitled Tales of Masked Men.

    While Raw maybe the flagship program of the WWE my favorite WWE show is the Legends of Wrestling featuring a Roundtable discussion of various topics discussed by grappling greats. My favorite YouTube program is Are You Serious hosted by The Road Dog and Josh Matthews with frequent interruptions by Puppet H. Are You Serious is a dumping ground for the deluge of Wrestlecrap in the WWE vault and is a fun 5 minutes worth checking out every Sunday.

    If you are looking for inside information about the industry but are tired of the shoot interview format I suggest checking out the Timeline series from Kayfabe Commentaries. They focus on a year and have one guest go through the year and events- my faves include the ones featuring Jim Coronette and Kevin Nash.

    While WWE 13 did gonzo box-office and I do own a copy of the game for the 360 I have to admit I have rarely played it –since I am still hooked on the Call of Duty series.

    WWE and TNA and ROH and Evolve all provided some great moments this year- the problem is wrestling is competing with its own past being so easily accessible and so many different and convenient entertainment options. Why settle for watching wrestling when you can watch football or stream a movie or play videogames. Sure that has always been the issue or option, but now with so much available at the click of button, every form of entertainment is struggling to be seen. Conventional advertising like radio and TV aren’t as effective and now wrestling has invaded the social media with formats like Tout and other ways of trying to reach the fans.

    I am still a wrestling fan and I still tune in- but as much as I watch the current product the true allure is in the past, documentaries, books and interviews. My favorite wrestling podcast is the Old School Wrestling podcast and they tend to not cover anything that is newer than 10 years ago.
    Below is my review of the New Year's Eve Raw