Hey, everyone! As we count down the last few days of 2003, I… wait a second. It's already 2004? What the hell? I missed New Year's Eve AGAIN? Dammit!!!
Anyways, last week in this very space, I brought you the first six months of my critically-acclaimed 'Year In Review'. Today, we look back at the highlights from July to December. Note: If you find any discrepancies, conflicts or errors in the timing of events, it means you're probably wrong.
· The Smack! Down roster presents its first-ever brand specific PPV, known as Die Hard With A Vengeance. Topping things off is a battle between Mister MacMahon and Zack 'Don't Call Me Larry' Gowan, with the company's future on the line!!! The match delivers as promised, and is a sign of better things to come for the three-legged Gowan. Other matches included Brock Lesnor versus Kur Tangle in one of only 78 matches against each other in 2003.
· In easily the most shocking event EVER in the history of mankind (or even dude love), Stoned Cold Steve Austen forces The Big Stupid Red Machine Kain to unmask. He shows the world that he is a HIDEOUSLY SCARRED FREAK and then hires attorney Clarence Mason to sue for punitive damages. Over the next few weeks, Kain goes on to:
o Burn Good Ol' JR Ewing to DEATH o Set RDV on fire o Leave Johnny Dreamer lying in a puddle of blood o Piledrive Lydia MacMahon onto a concrete stage o Bully around Eric Bischov o Attach jumper cables to the pants of Shane O' Max o Shove a harmless referee who was JUST DOING HIS JOB, FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!!! o Take credit for all of Kobey Bryan's legal problems o Molest several children at his Neverland ranch o Physically provoke Stoned Cold o Land a supporting role in the next Henry Potter And The Magic of Somethingorother movie o Capture Suddam Hoosein
· Former hillbilly Jimmy Noble offers Playgirl cover girl Tori Watson $10,000 to sleep with him. She agrees, but then Billy Gun and Woody Harrelson interrupt before it's too late.
At least I wish that was what happened.
· Seeds of the world's BEST tag team are planted on 7/21, when Hurricane Helmsley names former Three Man Warning competitor Rosie as his Super Hero For Training.
· Happy birthday to former legend Brad 'Hatman' Hurt, Undisputed World Champion Triple HHH, Superstars of Wrestling announcer Jerry 'The Body' Ventura, wrestling icon Hillbilly John, evil Widowmaker Barry Wind' Em, ex-President George "W" Butch and former murderer O' Jay Sampson.
· The big, sexy locks of hair of Big Sex Killer Kevin Nash are ruined by none other than Y J Stinger Chuck Jericho during their **** hair vs. hair vs. hair match. Nash later says he had to cut his mane anyways for the upcoming film 'Return of The Mighty Oz'.
· Brock Lesnor shocks the world by turning heel and challenging Kur Tangle for only the 95th time this year. To prepare for the match, The Next Best Thing battles preliminary grapplers Paul London, Ontario, Spanky, Alfalfa, Buckwheat, Spike Dudley, Ricky Ataki, Terry Gibbs and Rusty Riddle.
· Scotty Too Steiner loses the "services" (and by services, I mean hanky-panky) of Stacey Keebler to The Test. It was a surefire sign the two were about to split.
· We are treated to a dream match, worthy of a fan fiction story in Wrestling Superstars Magazine -- on FREE TELEVISION, no less, when Eric Bischov and Shane O' Max duke it out, during Eric Bischov's Monday Nihgt Raw. Unfortunately, Kain interferes, earning his new nickname as 'The Big Stupid Jerk'.
· During the big Bischov-O' Max rematch at SummerShow, who runs out to make a shocking turn but Coach John Goodman, host of shows such as WWF Excess, Blastoff, Jakked, Pumped, Ripped and Loaded? This sets up another series of dream matches pitting Coach and Al Shaw against Good Ol' JR Ewing and Jerry 'The King' Lawyer.
· More big Eric Bischov news, as the former ECW President strikes up something of a romance with Lydia MacMahon!!! The two make out for hours at the McMansion until Undertaker burns the house down again along with his Ministry.
· Happy birthday to young hottie Sabel The Wild Cat, young hottie Vince MacMahon, tag team specialist Jumpin' John Brunzelle, tag team specialist "Reverend" D-Lo Dudley, grumpy old man Mister Bob Backlan and grumpy old man Lonnie Anderson.
· Bill Goldenberg lives out his boyhood dream by not jobbing to Triple HHH at a PPV. Finally at Unforgotten, the 'Da Man' becomes one of two Undisputed World Champions, and begins his reign of terror.
· Brock Lesnor accidentally tosses Zack 'Don't Call Me Larry' Gowan down several flights of stairs. He bumps into hardcore legend Mick Farley on the way down.
· Speaking of Kur Tangle, he and Brock Lesnor lock up yet again, this time in a 23-minute Iron Man match (well, it could have gone longer, but the tape in my Betamax ran out and I wasn't watching it live. Any idea who won?).
· You won't believe what happened in NWA T and A!!!
· Scotty Too Steiner turns on Stacey Keebler, thus reuniting the legendary tag team of The Test and Big Daddy Dump. It was a sure sign that The Test and Keebler were about to split.
· Randy `Mucho Man' Sewage, best known as a wrestler somewhere, records his very own rap CD, proving that grapplers CAN be a huge success in the mainstream media.
· The Returning Leeta returns, just in time to promote her new book 'The Reality Show of Amy Dumbass'.
· Anthony Durante, best known to the world as One Of The Pitbulls, dies after being murdered by Pitbull Two, eliminating any chance of a Pitbulls reunion down the road.
· Happy birthday to Public Enemy singer Flyguy Rocko Rock, moody jerk Rayvin, Smack! Down Co-Commissioner Paul Herman, wrestling legend and preacher Superstar Barry Graham, gorgeous stud Greg 'The Hacksaw' Valentine, the deceased Road Warrior Hog and -- get ready for these ones -- Canadian Bulldog, Mrs. Bulldog and The Little Bulldog!!! BTW, thanks for all the gifts, you heartless bastards.
· In a tragic series of events, Shane O' Max accidentally tricks Kain into entering his limo, starts the car and drives it into a Mack Truck. Kain is instantly pronounced DOA (along with Eight Ball and Skull) and is never seen again.
· In a stunt expected to drive up the ratings, Triple HHH puts a $1,000 bounty on the head of Bill Goldenberg. It's eventually collected by the notorious Boba Fitt Findley, who puts our hero in a carbonite-freezing chamber and delivers him to Jabba's Palace.
· Luke Skywalker enters the palace and after a battle to the death with Jabba, he… oh, wait. Sorry. Got my plots confused. You've got to admit; they're both compelling stories.
· At the age of 108, the legendary Stu Heart is put to rest after being murdered by Pitbull Two. Heart was known as 'The granddaddy of 'em all' for fathering a family that includes: Brad Hurt, Oren Hurt, Jim The Anvil Night Hart, British Bulldog Davey B. Smith (no relation to me, btw), Jimmy Heart, Bryan The Pillman, Makhan Singh, Canadian Crippler Chris Benwah, Afa, Sika, Samu, Rikishi Phatu And Your Mother Too, Ofa, Tonga Kid, King Tonga, Haku, Gesundheit, Jimminy Superfreak Snuka and Bruce Hart.
· Eddy Guerrera gets the better of Best Show by coming to the ring in a truck and spraying him down with mud.
· Smack! Down books a HUGE main event for it's brand specific Have Mercy paper-view: Vince MacMahon vs. His Daughter Stephoney in a match where the FANS ultimately win!!!
· After Vince ultimately upsets his daughter in their ***1/2 match (no thanks to interference from a Train!), former ECW president Paul Herman is select as the new district manager of Smack! Down. Herman shows why he's a creative genius in his very first show by booking the return of Scotty The Hotty.
· Another death in the wrestling world occurs when Joe Laurinitis, known to the world as Road Warrior Hog is senselessly murdered. Attorneys for Pitbull Two have no comment.
· Happy birthday to no-good punk Justin Incredible, sexy Latin heartthrob Bruno Santamartina, Raw interviewer and fellow lesbian Terri Reynolds, Smack! Down interviewer Tazzzzzzzz, hockey standout Marc MacGuire and up and coming rap sensation Snoopy The Dogg.
· It's a breakout month for the legendary Hardy family. First, Bob 'Hardwood' Holly makes his much-anticipated return in a main event role against Brock Lesnor. Then, Mighty Molly regains the WWE Girl's Title from Some Other Chick. Finally –- and really, this isn't a good thing -- Michael Lockwood, better known as Crash Hardy and Sparky Plug, dies after being murdered by The Headsmashers and The Mean Street Party when they were chasing him through a Laundromat. No referee was present to make the count.
· Stoned Cold Steve Austen brings his legendary 30-plus year career to a close after his team loses at The Surviving Series. He was never seen again. Hey, Steve, if you're reading this column (and I'm sure you are): We love the shit out of you, too.
· The Immaterial Hal Kogan, best known to fans as a crazy old man, is "reported" to be "in talks" with NWA T and A over "wrestling" on one of their "events" in the "near future". He is immediately "booked" into a "program" with Double Jeff Jarrod to give a "boost" to T and A "buyrates". However, Jarrod attemps to murder Hogan during a press conference in China, and the match never happens.
· It's 'Raw Is Love' all month long, as new relationships sprout between Y J Stinger Chuck Jericho and Tritch Stratus; The Returning Leeta and The Christian; The Returning Leeta and Matt Hardee Version 2.0 For Windows; The Test and Stacey Keebler (who are about to split up any day now); Stephen Richards and Queen Victoria; T.D. Long and Homosexual Mark Chocolate; and Molly Hardy and… uh… uh… Super Rosie.
· Y'all remember Moon Dogg Spot? Murdered. Guess who did it?
· Jim Cena takes time out of his busy rapping schedule to turn down the opportunity of a lifetime, joining the HUGE team of The Retired Nathan Johns, Best Show, Brock Lesnor, Mike Morgan, a Train, Kong King Bundy, Akeeeem, Bad Boss Man, Yoko Zuna, Adbullah The Baker and The Deceased Andrew The Giant. World Life!!!
· Speaking of murder, Vince MacMahon commits the ultimate crime at Surviving Series. But besides making people pay to watch him wrestle, (*rimshot* – thank you, thank you very much. You've been a beautiful audience. I'll be here all week.) he buries Big Evil The Under Taker. Not only that, he buries him ALIVE!!! But the question remains: Is Big Devil finished? In the words of his own theme song…
· Happy birthday to American Icon The American Icon Dustey Roads, whiny crybaby Sean Douglas, rookie sensation Big Ass Billy Gun, Tuff Enuff head trainer Humorous, The Stone Movement lead singer Stuart Stone and movie-industry executive Ryan Pasternak.
· We manage to get through an entire month without any wrestling murders. Except for Jerry Twit, best known in WCW as Sergeant A Wall, but he doesn't count.
· Former wrestler "Dick" Slater, who competed in the WWWF as 'Rebel Rebel, Your Face Is A Mess' Dick Slater, is arrested for attempted… aw, man!!!
· WWE troops invaded Iraq! Actually, I'm just exaggerating here; it was actually Iran. Performers such as Breadshaw, Best Show, The World's Best Goddam Tag Team and Some Guy In A Santa Mask entertained the forces, and when it was all done, captured Sadamn. Kain receive a medal from the president for his courage.
· Three-time, three-time, three-time, three-time former world champion Mick Farley returned to television with a job that allowed him to put himself in any role in the company that he saw fit. Hey, I didn't know Mick was a MacMahon (*rimshot* Thank you, thank you, you guys are the best.)!!! He first became Co-Commissioner along with Eric Bischov on Eric Bischov's Monday Night Raw then he fought Randy Orson in a match where Mick had to leave because he left his lucky necklace at home.
· Earnest "The Cat In The Hat" Mueller entertains us all and makes us laugh with his dancing promos. Ha Ha! Aren't they funny? Funny and great? Eventually, they entertain us so much that someone (Pitbull Two, I'm looking at YOU) decides to murder him.
At least I wish that was what happened.
· Happy birthday to overall happy guy Rod Van-Damme, former WWF diva Sonny, former youngster Din-O-Mite!! Kid, convicted murderer Stoned Cold, Wrestling Hotline aficionado Mean Jean, television person Mary Tyler More and, of course, Santa Klaws.
… and that brings us to the end of 2003 (I can't believe I missed New Year's Eve… again!! Dammit!!!). If you have any questions, comments, suggestions, or questions, be sure to pass them along to Canadian_bulldog@hotmail.com. Or you can visit my NEW WEBSITE at http://inside_the_ropes.tripod.com!!!
Until then, remember, if you heard it here first, it's… Inside The Ropes. Happy New Year – Thanks for the compliment!!!
PreLine for No Way Out is up. PreLine: No Way Out: February 15, 2004 Enjoy Robert Ortega Jr. 15Feb04: Just had to attach this performance record denoting a WWE title change that never thought I would see way back in Jan-Feb 2000.