Views From The Turnbuckle: Assorted Thoughts And Ramblings, Bret Hart, Homicide And More
I have had some ideas floating around my head that I have been thinking about writing a column about, however I doubted that I could get an entire VFTT out of the topics, so here are just a few random thoughts about wrestling that I have that hopefully will interest readers.
Bret Hart's Mic Skills
Bret Hart is one of the most popular wrestlers in the history of the business; however there has always been a knock on his ability to cut a good promo. While his in-ring skills where never questioned, Bret was sometimes looked upon as a one-dimensional kind of performer. Yeah he was a great wrestler, but he was never on the microphone level of guys like The Rock, Steve Austin or Ric Flair.
While for a majority of Bret Hart's career his character was that of the simple face that fought for what was right and always stood up for the little guy. This character had been used by promoters for decades, but by the mid-90s, its value was wearing thin. Hart was a great wrestler, but he was boring and his character lacked the true depth that someone who appeared on weekly television needed to remain interesting.
Hart's character changed during his feud with Steve Austin and Shawn Michaels, and through 1996 and 1997, Hart displayed a unique edge that he had never really shown before. With that new edge came much better promos, and suddenly Hart went from being too boring on the mic to being one of the best speakers in wrestling.
Hart was one of the first wrestlers to break kayfabe in his promos, and every heel promo he gave against Austin, Michaels or Vince McMahon he sprinkled in little inklings of truth. His best work probably took place on March 17th, 1997, when after losing a steel cage match to Sid with interference by both Steve Austin and The Undertaker, Hart cut an absolute beauty promo against Vince McMahon and the WWF.
"Frustrated isn't the goddamn word for it! This is BULLS***! You screwed me, everybody screwed me and nobody does a goddamn thing about it! Nobody in the building cares, nobody in the dressing room cares, so much goddamn injustice around here, I've had it up to here! Everybody knows it! I know it! EVERYBODY knows it, I should be the World Wrestling Federation Champion! Everybody just keeps turning a blind eye, you keep turning a blind eye to it, I've got that Gorilla Monsoon, he turns a blind eye to it, everybody in that goddamn dressing room knows that I'm the best there is, the best there was and the best there ever will be! [turns to fans] And if you don't like it, tough S***!"
When evaluating Hart's career, you cannot dismiss him by saying that he was boring and had no mic skills, because during his final years in the WWF, Hart showed that he could hang with anybody on the microphone.
Homicide's Wasted Potential
A reason the WWE always seems to be pushing guys like Alberto Del Rio and Sin Cara is that, like every single other business in America, they are trying to tap into the rapidly expanding Latin American market.
While you cannot fault the WWE's business plan in trying to develop a demographic, I think that they have gone on about it the wrong way. Guys like Del Rio and Sin Cara have hardly been smashing successes in the WWE, despite their frequent pushes, and the reason is that I do not believe the WWE has a good understanding of what people actually want out of their Latino wrestlers.
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