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14.12.11 2105
The 7 - Pro Wrestling - Mr. John Laurinaitis, Executive Vice President of Talent Relations & Interim General Manager of RAW
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John Orquiola
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#1 Posted on 6.12.11 1459.59
Reposted on: 6.12.18 1506.26
I hate to say it, but Mr. John Laurinaitis is starting to grow on me. Oh don't get me wrong, he's terrible. Simply awful as an on-screen character, and probably as a real-life Executive Vice President of Talent Relations, if the numerous complaints from former (and some current) WWE wrestlers are to be believed.

Specifically, I'm talking about his on screen role as Interim RAW GM. And he's still terrible, to be clear. And yet, it's starting to be the kind of terrible that I'm finding funny. As someone who unabashedly adores "truly terrible they're funny" things about pro-wrestling, John Laurinaitis is delivering such moments almost weekly. His monotone delivery belies some weird dialogue that I find funny.

It mainly started a few weeks back when CM Punk and Alberto Del Rio brawled in the back, and Laurinaitis started yelling at them: "DON'T MAKE ME TAKE OFF MY TIE!" I cracked up at that. This week on RAW, he kept firing off zingers: "I can be very creative." "I'm all about innovation." "I'm Mr. Excitement." (I almost lost it.) At the contract signing, asking the ringside photographer into the ring to take photographs of the participants in the Triple Threat TLC match. And of course, looking right into the camera and wishing John Morrison well in his future endeavors. (I did lose it.) Holy shit. That was one of my happiest moments of watching RAW ever.

I don't know, man. If Johnny Ace disappears from TV forever tomorrow, I won't shed a tear. But I can't help that I'm finding him funny. God, he is terrible! But he's terrible, I think, in the way they wanted Mike Adamle as GM to be terrible -- except Adamle was just too terrible. Does that make sense? Anyway, that terribleness is the secret to Mr. John Laurinaitis' success. Vince McMahon probably thinks Laurinaitis is a hundred times funnier than I do, and he's probably laughing harder than anyone. If it's Vince McMahon laughing, John Laurinaitis isn't going away any time soon.

(edited by John Orquiola on 6.12.11 1303)
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BigDaddyLoco
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#2 Posted on 6.12.11 1511.20
Reposted on: 6.12.18 1511.37
I like him. There are crappy bosses like him all over the land. The fact that he doesn't seem to have absolute power is kind of a nice change as well. He does what corporate wants and it doesn't bother him if the employees like it or not. I like him even more because he hangs out with David Otunga.

Mayhem
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#3 Posted on 6.12.11 1519.56
Reposted on: 6.12.18 1521.56

I like him too, but not in the same way I liked Vince ... Vince was that boss in which you hated his guts, but deep down respected him because he at least had balls ... Laurinaitis is that smarmy creep of a boss that you'd just love to wrap your hands around his neck until he turns purple ...

Laurinaitis has gotta take a bump a some point ... and wherever it is, will come unglued ...
El Nastio
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#4 Posted on 6.12.11 1527.49
Reposted on: 6.12.18 1528.19
    Originally posted by John Orquiola
    And of course, looking right into the camera and wishing John Morrison well in his future endeavors. (I did lose it.) Holy shit. That was one of my happiest moments of watching RAW ever.


Agreed. I couldn't believe it when that happenned. To top off, I think I remember the camera zooming in on Laurinaitis as it happened.

    Originally posted by Mayhem
    Laurinaitis has gotta take a bump a some point ... and wherever it is, will come unglued ...


Also agreed, and hopefully it happens in a place like New York, Philly, or Chicago.
Dr Unlikely
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#5 Posted on 6.12.11 1550.32
Reposted on: 6.12.18 1550.33
    Originally posted by John Orquiola
    It mainly started a few weeks back when CM Punk and Alberto Del Rio brawled in the back, and Laurinaitis started yelling at them: "DON'T MAKE ME TAKE OFF MY TIE!" I cracked up at that. This week on RAW, he kept firing off zingers: "I can be very creative." "I'm all about innovation." "I'm Mr. Excitement." (I almost lost it.) At the contract signing, asking the ringside photographer into the ring to take photographs of the participants in the Triple Threat TLC match. And of course, looking right into the camera and wishing John Morrison well in his future endeavors. (I did lose it.) Holy shit. That was one of my happiest moments of watching RAW ever.

I only really disagree with the Morrison endeavors moment because I'd been spoiled on the "Mr. Future Endeavors" thing and felt it coming a little too soon, but overall, I agree that there's a weird sense of goofy and yet dry humor that makes a lot of his segments entertaining while not necessarily good. One I think you missed, and the first time I actually got that sense from him, was in the infamous Strike episode, where he got on the phone and asked someone - presumably his wife, possibly Vince - "I didn't come off too intimidating, did I?" in a way that sold it like he was a doddering old grampa trying to play evil middle manager. It was, for lack of a better, an uncharacteristically sweet comedy moment that pro wrestling is otherwise incapable of doing.

He's like someone who should be the villain for the cast of Police Academy, with Punk as his Mahoney, and Cena as his Also Mahoney If Mahoney Had All Of Tackleberry, Hightower And Jones's Superpowers.

I guess that smarmy without being "truly evil" Evil Boss character may have some roots in the WWE version of Eric Bischoff, where Bischoff was positioned as a guy who was still a rung below the McMahons. But since Punk and Cena were clowning Laurinaitis about his voice and history almost the second he turned up on screen, he's come off as even less menacing.

I also think having Otunga as his lackey adds tremendously to whatever appeal has been there. If Otunga should happen to read this by having Googled Himself, my only recommendation on how to improve his onscreen presence at the moment is that he should do a really loud "AHHHHHH!" after every sip he takes from his thermos.
Fazana
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#6 Posted on 6.12.11 1610.30
Reposted on: 6.12.18 1610.32
Even his tweets can be amusing, saw this one posted elsewhere

"It wasn't John Morrison's week last week...but I did offer him one of these t-shirts as a parting gift... http://bit.ly/​uGqfbY"

I'm sure JM will appreciate that every bit as much as Ryders memorial for him this week.

(edited by Fazana on 6.12.11 2210)
Matt Tracker
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#7 Posted on 6.12.11 1813.33
Reposted on: 6.12.18 1813.46
Oddly, he offers the opposite side of the spectrum of onscreen personality that Cole does. John is subdued to the point of bland, and Cole is the screeching, cackling harpie. It makes the in-ring folks sound like charming, reasonable people. But not Superstars.

I'd like him better if he did step into people's faces occasionally instead of being so even-keeled.
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#8 Posted on 6.12.11 1848.37
Reposted on: 6.12.18 1849.30
So, the question should be "Is he as bad as Mike Adamle or is he as awesome as Mike Adamle?"
El Nastio
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#9 Posted on 6.12.11 1941.26
Reposted on: 6.12.18 1941.37
    Originally posted by Cerebus
    So, the question should be "Is he as bad as Mike Adamle or is he as awesome as Mike Adamle?"


Here's your answer:

dwaters
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#10 Posted on 6.12.11 2022.44
Reposted on: 6.12.18 2023.12
As long as he takes screen time away from Michael Cole and entire segments devoted to mocking JR, I'm OK.

terrible > annoying

It is awkward how Laurenitis seems a head taller than Punk, Del Rio, Cena..etc.

I still think of the Raw GM Laptop when I hear that certain computer noise. I thought that was a great way to get heat and the crowds seemed to enjoyed booing when they heard that noise. It got Cole heat for delivering the messages and he was fine in this role-- not the twerpy, insulting, over the top "vegan and no TV owning" hating caricature he is now.
It's False
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#11 Posted on 6.12.11 2144.34
Reposted on: 6.12.18 2144.34
I'm going to disagree with the majority. I still find Laurinaitis painful and I'm not finding him painful in any kind of endearing way. I made a light mention of this in the Raw thread, but just because they're playing up the fact that he's terrible, doesn't mean he's not terrible. It's like the most recent This is Your Life sketch. Just because you had Cena openly saying it was a terrible segment, didn't make it any less of a terrible segment.

I won't even get into how Laurinaitis takes the focus out of the main event picture (I couldn't even remember Del Rio was getting a rematch for the longest time), but as an on-air personality, I personally find him sleep-inducing. It might SEEM like a good idea to channel Ben Stein, Matthew Broderick, and Steven Wright, but it makes for a terrible wrestling personality...especially one that takes up so much airtime.
dwaters
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#12 Posted on 6.12.11 2234.08
Reposted on: 6.12.18 2234.08
Matthew Broderick?
It's False
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#13 Posted on 6.12.11 2355.41
Reposted on: 6.12.18 2355.42
    Originally posted by dwaters
    Matthew Broderick?

Broderick's delivered some bland performances, The Producers notwithstanding. I think I was just thinking of Broderick because I came back in from Tower Heist, where he may have had one of his more terrible performances, on the level of Godzilla and Inspector Gadget. Not to say I didn't like Tower Heist, because it was a GREAT movie.

But I digress.

(edited by It's False on 6.12.11 2156)
DJ FrostyFreeze
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#14 Posted on 7.12.11 1008.15
Reposted on: 7.12.18 1008.15
    Originally posted by It's False
    I'm going to disagree with the majority. I still find Laurinaitis painful and I'm not finding him painful in any kind of endearing way.
I'm with you. And I didnt find him delivering that stupid "future endeavors" line (or him walking out just to give John Morrison that weird post-beat-down look-over last week) funny at all.

Truth is, that F.E. line can only become a catchphrase if he gets to say it alot, and that only happens if people keep getting fired over and over. Dumb thing to put on a T-shirt too.

So in closing, he's 100% terrible on all levels.
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#15 Posted on 7.12.11 1246.26
Reposted on: 7.12.18 1246.26
I've been sick of the whole GM thing for years and have always yearned to go back to the days of a Suit like Jack Tunney to come out only when things were really serious. Someone who really reads as a "Suit" and doesn't have a lot of charisma and doesn't read as an "Entertainer."

That said, I really like Laurinaitis in the figurehead role. I just think he appears on TV way too much to be as truly effective as he could be. Keep him as straight-laced and serious as you can and only use him when absolutely necessary and I think it works.

I loved that F.E. moment on Monday, because it's the exact moment a business-ey stooge would take to say something like that. I don't really see it as a catchphrase, but rather a "corporate" term that's been used enough times to know what it really means and how tacky it is.
Sec19Row53
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#16 Posted on 7.12.11 1547.33
Reposted on: 7.12.18 1554.12
    Originally posted by SKLOKAZOID
    I loved that F.E. moment on Monday, because it's the exact moment a business-ey stooge would take to say something like that. I don't really see it as a catchphrase, but rather a "corporate" term that's been used enough times to know what it really means and how tacky it is.

The place I used to work at actually uses that phrase. Am I the only one who has seen it in the real world?

They also used to sign all their e-mails with "Kind Regards". It bugged the crap out of me.
Big Bad
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#17 Posted on 7.12.11 1728.22
Reposted on: 7.12.18 1729.01
    Originally posted by SKLOKAZOID
    I've been sick of the whole GM thing for years and have always yearned to go back to the days of a Suit like Jack Tunney to come out only when things were really serious. Someone who really reads as a "Suit" and doesn't have a lot of charisma and doesn't read as an "Entertainer."


Teddy Long is basically used in this role now. He's a regular on Smackdown but generally is just in one segment making an (obvious) match, or doing one his patented HOLD ON NOW, PLAYA interruptions to set up a tag bout when there are four guys arguing in the ring.
Big G
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#18 Posted on 7.12.11 1919.45
Reposted on: 7.12.18 1921.37
    Originally posted by It's False
    I made a light mention of this in the Raw thread, but just because they're playing up the fact that he's terrible, doesn't mean he's not terrible. It's like the most recent This is Your Life sketch. Just because you had Cena openly saying it was a terrible segment, didn't make it any less of a terrible segment.


This! If I had a like +1 button for this post I'd be bangin' away on it like a, well something.

Family Guy does this as well. IMO, self deprecating humour only works when the thing you're deprecating is actually kinda good.

It really pisses me off when someone puts out choad and then points and ridicules it for being choad. The message I always take from that is "This thing we did is choad, but it's OK, because we know it's choad, so let's laugh at it for being choad." Fucking. No. If you know it's choad, then FIX IT, don't fucking smirk at it and try to pretend that it was done deliberately and not just because you couldn't come up with anything that was actually good!

RE Kind Regards:
Whenever I get that (and it's one of those curious phrases that you never hear actually spoken, much like "We apologise for the inconvenience".) I always read it as "Fuck You!" Because when it's in an email, 9 times out of 10, that's what they actually mean. This rule applies doubly when it's used as a salutation rather than just a valediction.
Peter The Hegemon
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#19 Posted on 8.12.11 0055.49
Reposted on: 8.12.18 0056.00
    Originally posted by Sec19Row53

    The place I used to work at actually uses that phrase. Am I the only one who has seen it in the real world?



No.

I've noticed that F4W is now all excited when they see the phrased used in a non-wrestling context, reporting that someone's "copying" WWE. But I'm quite sure it's been standard corporate-speak for a long time.
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#20 Posted on 9.12.11 0000.09
Reposted on: 9.12.18 0010.33
That's supersmarks for you. Can't remember what site, but someone thought Stargate SG-1 using Loki was a reference to the One World Warrior.
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