EDITOR'S NOTE: Eric Benner is SLAM! Wrestling's regular Friday columnist.
Friday, August 3, 2001
A special quick hits edition
I don't actually have a whole column's worth of reaction to The Rock's return, electrifying though it was. This will be a quick hits edition, as I have a few things to say about other topics. While on Rock, though, I'm glad that we don't have to wait three weeks to see which faction he'll side with. Though I'm also happy he didn't hug Vince McMahon or do anything else blatantly inconsistent, I think that was about as good as his return could have been.
Also, the WWF made a wise decision having him face Booker T while Austin and Angle match up at Summerslam.
I remember when Ross turned heel awhile back, to help push "Dr. Death" Steve Williams, and he had his own smaller announce table in front of the WWF commentators' table. That was funny.
I never watched too much ECW, which is perhaps why Van Dam seems so fresh to me. Equally, I'm really starting to enjoy the work of Tajiri. He combines psychology with innovative offense very well, and his moves aren't as death-defying as Van Dam's, but often just as impressive. Considering the verbal skills he has demonstrated so far, his personality is very over with the WWF audience and he's a great talent.
Here's the mailbag.
Shannon Miller, from firstname.lastname@example.org, writes:
"I agree with you almost 100 % about Kurt Angle's 'lost angle'. I've actually started to enjoy this whole invasion thing, which I was completely against. I find myself actually WANTING Angle to win. We watched him go from being Austin and Vince's puppet to the exact opposite. We may have gone from milk and cookies to beer swilling with the APA in a very short time. BUT it was pretty enjoyable to watch. A few cuss words later and we actually believe that Austin's @$$ is his."
Most of the folks who mailed in seemed to be of like mind, Shannon. Just about everyone wants Angle to take on Austin at Summerslam, and a good chunk of people seem to want Angle to win enough to buy the pay-per-view. I guess not having Rock interrupt his feud with Austin made good business sense to the writers after all. I feared they would try to hotshot their way to higher ratings by doing the opposite.
Alex, from email@example.com, writes:
"Well, how are you going to explain this botch-up? After all that crying about Angle's supposed derailment, he and Austin are having a match at SS. And Rock and Booker ARE fighting, just like you were saying should happen. Seems someone has no faith in good ol' Vince."
So you're pointing out that in the end, my suggestion ended up being in line with the WWF's take on things, and so that makes my "crying" a "botch-up". Somehow.
It wasn't exactly a prediction out of thin air that the WWF might go in another direction, but it's a good thing they didn't.
Regardless, it's not about faith in Vince McMahon. He's as fallible as anyone in some respects, and he doesn't it right every time. But I'm glad to see the WWF on top of this one.
That's all for this week. Have a safe and happy weekend. See you next week!
Send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.