It is the milestone episode #200 of The Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling and today we feature one of the most iconic names in the history of professional wrestling, Ed Leslie otherwise known as Brutus "The Barber" Beefcake. Fitting that Brutus joins John and Chad for this episode as he is one of the most identifiable and recognized names in 1980s WWF wrestling and also is one of the most colorful and charismatic performers to ever lace up the boots and jump into the squared circle. From his sleeper-hold, to his trademark cuttin' and struttin' and with every post match haircut ever given out it is time for you to get into the barber's chair and listen to TMPT's 200th podcast and get ready to learn a little bit more about the one and only Brutus Beefcake. You can download the full episode at this link.
"I'll tell you exactly what it was: it was a time that will never come again. The wrestling business exploded and all of a sudden we were brushing up against Hollywood and Hollywood would have never been caught dead being associated with anything about wrestling until the 80s. After that it was MTV, VH1, Saturday Night Live, NBC and mainstream television and all of a sudden it is lit up on Friday nights and Saturday Night's Main Event and Hollywood saw that it was cool to be in wrestling and around the wrestlers. It was a break-through time that marked the changes in wrestling and a time with personnel that was so diverse and so talented and it was a time that will never happen again."
Getting hired by Vince McMahon and becoming Brutus Beefcake in the WWE:
"Well it was my big break coming to "New York" and it wasn't just a couple years, it was seven years wrestling in different territories and getting experience wrestling and learning from true legends and old-timers that had really been around our business for a long time and to learn from their experience and their knowledge. Going to the WWF, they were grabbing everyone and every talent possible and it was the right place, right time for me to become Brutus Beefcake. I walked right in there and the next thing you know it is exploding. I loved being the heel Brutus Beefcake and although being a baby face is great and everyone loves you, I'll tell you I had more fun being a heel and getting to wrestle (Hulk) Hogan in the sold out arenas and having people screaming at me and wanting to kill me and that is how you know you are doing the right thing in the ring."
Getting to work with Hulk Hogan in Main Events after their years of struggling to make it together in the business:
"There was no doubt that it was great. We were doing mega business everywhere and sellouts every night. When you have your run with the champion it was always sold out and all the guys that he wrestled they were all selling out with whether it was King Kong Bundy, Paul Orndorff or Big John Studd and I just got thrown in the mix with a lot of big and really experienced wrestlers. It was a great time for me but also a good learning experience and it gave me more knowledge so that when the time was right and they decided to switch me to babyface. Which is funny because they didn't even tell me they were going to do that. All of a sudden it was one day they sat me down and said you are going to be "the barber" and my first question was what is the barber? There is no such thing as a barber in wrestling. I did some fast footwork and kind of had to recreate myself and thank god that it worked because it made me bigger than ever."
Did he expect the cuttin' and struttin' to catch on with the fans:
"Nobody had ever done something like cutting people's hair in the ring before. You would have a hair-cut match that you would maybe have in the Southern territories that you could have after a year but that was usually when it was time to move on and if a guy had hair you would have a hair vs. hair match and the guy would be gone from the territory and you would never see him again. Trying to have to incorporate this into a nightly thing and on every television show or taping that I worked meant I had to go out there and wear different outfits and cut someone's hair and come up with something new and constantly change it to keep it exciting for the people. It was a big challenge but I didn't have anyone standing over my shoulder saying do this do or do that, it was all me and whatever other things I would get from a few friends like Hulk Hogan. Hogan who was there to guide me a little bit which was very helpful."
Being back in the mix with WWE after 23 years away from the company and appearing on The Edge and Christian Show:
"It was great and we (Edge and Christian) had a ball. We worked on a Friday and I had flown in on a Thursday and we worked for a couple of hours and knocked it out fast. Afterwards, I got to tour the facility and went around the building and got to see some old friends there that I hadn't seen in close to 25 years. You definitely haven't seen the end of me there. I just did a where are they now segment that won't be out for a little while but they came down here and filmed me at my home and I filmed stuff at Raw at a Raw show they did down in Tampa (and they had a really big house) and there is going to be a lot coming in the future and they've got some plans for Brutus. They sought me out. One of the main reasons why is because of the toy companies and the people who want the legends and the older guys and all of the superstars of wrestling from the past. There are not too many of us left and that is the one big problem, there are so few guys and real main eventers that even have anything to do with the business or are still involved."
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