Just ahead of his debut international UK tour appearance in Glasgow, Scotland with Inside The Ropes, Jim Cornette appeared on their radio show and spoke about working with Kane in 1997/98. Here are the highlights:
Working on helping establish the Kane character:
Glen Jacobs, Kane, was a special talent. I knew he had a great upside and potential when Dutch Mantell called me one time in Knoxville in 1995 and said "I've got this kid, he looks great, he's huge, he looks wonderful, he's sick of being in Puerto Rico and wants to come back to the states. His name's Glen Jacobs and I think he's got a great upside."
So we made him Unabomb back in Smoky Mountain Wrestling. The Unabomber was hot back in those days. So we booked him, I did, against The Undertaker, for his first time, down in Knoxville at the Superbowl of Champions in August of 95 and Undertaker came in and wrestled him and that was my idea. Here's a huge guy who can draw big money on pay per view against The Undertaker. That was my sole purpose for pushing Glen Jacobs.
So Undertaker went back to Vince and told him,"this kid's gonna be great," so of course he went through his bad gimmicks that Vince wanted to give people and just right as they were about to fire him they said, "hey you know we've got this idea, Undertaker's evil brother." And I ran with that because Glen deserved it and was a great talent. They gave me the opportunity for a while, to get a guy over, unmolested. Russo didn't see anything in him, so he wasn't gonna f--k with it.
The match in October 1997, Kane interfered in the Hell in a Cell with Undertaker and Shawn Michaels, that was my finish, that was my match, my idea. We were leading to the WrestleMania the next March. So then Russo says, 'how about we have him chokeslam Undertaker through a table next week on RAW?' I said, 'No you f--king idiot, they can't wrestle each other for six months, let's not blow it straight away, lets build it and have some patience." So for once, possibly the only time, I got my way. We were able to build it to WrestleMania, it was a great match and it established Kane and he has been one of the millionaires club, making seven figures a year since then. Based on the fact he's a tremendous talent, he had the look, the ability and the passion to sometimes overcome bad creative and make himself a star. I like the fact I had some part in establishing him but the rest of it's been up to him.
The origins of the character of Kane:
The thing that put Kane over the top is that he didn't just appeal to the wrestling fan, he appealed to a mass audience because my original vision was....my favorite horror movie was Halloween, Michael Myers and that was my original vision for Kane when I was told that Kane would be the Undertaker's evil brother who's existed all this time. I thought what if he was like Michael Myers, the main character in Halloween, what if he was like the embodiment of evil. That's the flavor that not just wrestling fans but everyone watching the show, they got. This guy is the embodiment of evil, he's somewhat inhuman, he doesn't feel pain, he doesn't feel remorse.
That was the thing that kicked Kane off and then later on we did the dipsy doodles with him, but first and foremost it was that this is Michael Myers from Halloween come to life and everyone can identify with a spooky m-----------r that doesn't feel pain and just seeks to destroy people. That was what I gave to him and everything else he's done, there's been some good creative, some bad creative but he's a great f--king guy, he's a great talent and he's made the most of what he's had to work with. But originally, it was that this guy is the star of Halloween, he's a monster, he's spooky and nobody knows quite how he got these powers. That was something that could appeal to everybody.
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