AS I SEE IT 8/2: Bimbo and switch?
by: Bob Magee
Remember me telling you last week that you should complain if WWE plays bait and switch as well as when TNA does?
It took less than 24 hours to happen after my column appeared on most of the sites on which you read this column...although we fans at least didn't have to pay for the privilege in this case.
WWE told viewers everywhere that the 60 minute Iron Man match between HHH and Chris Benoit would lead off the show.
Well...9:00 pm came... and went...and the show went live, with most of the RAW brand locker room, either in the ring or on their way to it. Eric Bischoff (OK...Stephanie McMahon and her writing team) had "decided" that the show will start with a battle royal, with the winner to become number one contender for the RAW "World" Heavyweight Title to wrestle at SummerSlam the winner of the HHH-Benoit match...the match that, as it turns out, ENDED the show.
Then...before we got to see the HHH-Benoit match, we were also forced to watch the latest chapter of the RAW Bimb...er...Divas...contest, where the "Diva contestants" proceeded to verbally make out with Kamala (and we thought John Layfield would win the award for least correct character on a WWE TV show).
I wonder what Chigusa Nagayo... or Shinobu Kandori.... or Aja Kong... or Akira Hokuto... or Etsuko Mita or Mima Shimoda would have to say about these "Divas" being involved in their business; let alone a series of women who actually wrestled in the American business over the years.
If any of you have ever watched the movie "Gaea Girls", a great film that shows the culture of Japanese women's wrestling and seen the school where the Gaea promotion trains its workers...it's pretty obvious that GAEA trainer Chigusa Nagayo would take one look at this exhibition of stupidity with these "Divas" idiots verbally making out with Kamala, and kicked the living crap out of them.
I'm not saying there isn't a place for the Stacy Keiblers and Trish Stratuses of the world in wrestling. Stratus loved wrestling before she got in the business with WWE...and used to guest on the Live Audio Wrestling show based out of Toronto in her pre-WWF/E days. Stratus has also made a conscious effort to get her in-ring work to the point where she does fine by US women's standards, as opposed to just getting by on her looks (which she could have easily done).
Stacy Keibler also seems to do a good job as a PR representative when WWE needs a public face, such as in the appearance of WWE management and talent at the Democratic National Convention also shown this past Monday night on RAW. She does a good job at ringside when she's been put there as well.
I don't have any problem saying that eye candy is fine...in its proper place and time. But these "divas" should be the sizzle on a wrestling show...and not the steak. But that's not what's happening here...these women are getting major air time at the expense of WWE's remaining talent.
The exhibition I saw on this past week's RAW...a continuing one that those watching RAW will be sentenced to see for the next nine weeks, takes up FAR too much of the viewer's time...that could be devoted to getting over many other characters and storylines.
But it won't.
Instead, we'll get even more stupid skits...such as the ones so far that have included the "Divas" tearing apart Eric Bischoff's office to find a "immunity envelope"...and the skit this week with Kamala. If I want to see this kind of thing, I'll stay up after 11:05 and watch Joe Schmo 2. At least Joe Schmo 2 is SUPPOSED to be a parody of reality television....but not RAW.
To add to all this...one of the "Divas" is suspiciously, the 2004 Playboy Playmate of the Year, named
Carmella DeCesare...who (what a surprise) already has her own Playboy DVD. Her previous TV "reality" experience saw her as a finalist on FOX based reality program in 2002 entitled "Girl Next Door: The Search for a Playboy Centerfold".
You can probably get better odds for me becoming an intern to L. Brent Bozell and the Parents Television Council than you will for seeing someone else defeat her in this "competition", given the Playboy-WWE connection.
Who says Joe Schmo 2 is the only program featuring a worked "contest" on Monday nights?
So after all of this...HHH-Benoit turned out to be an very watchable match, despite the early whining of the people of Pittsburgh with their "Let's Go Steelers" chants when no highspots were being done or flamethrowers were being used) ...when we eventually got to see it. This quality match went on for about 50 minutes, until the run-ins from everywhere but Crawford, TX got in the way of what could have been a classic match.
Granted, it did set up the storyline for the HHH-Eugene match...but couldn't WWE have found a better way to do that...and leave a match like this alone?
Until next time....
If you have comments/questions, or if you'd like to add the AS I SEE IT
column to your website, I can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org)