Friday, May 29, 2015

WWE Elimination Chamber 2015 Predictions!!!

Aaaand welcome back to Enuffa.com for yet another round of WWE PPV Predictions!


The Chamber is back!  Despite most arenas now boasting electronic scoreboards that make hanging the heavy, demonic structure from the ceiling impossible, WWE found one arena in Corpus Christi that hasn't yet made such upgrades.  Thus WWE is bringing back the Elimination Chamber for this Network "Special Event."

The show was hastily thrown together over the past two weeks but I'll be goddamned if this isn't the strongest on-paper lineup thus far in WWE's 2015 calendar.  Two Chamber matches for secondary Titles, an awesome WWE Title match, and the main roster in-ring debut of the current NXT Champ, against WWE's posterboy no less.  I'm actually very excited about this show, and I hope it delivers on all fronts.

Could WWE Revive the Territory System?

Welcome to a special discussion thread here at Enuffa.com.  My friends Travis and Jim each came up with scenarios whereby WWE could revive the territory system of old, but all under the WWE brand, in a way that would diversify the product and create a robust farm system for rising talent.  Without further ado, here's what they came up with.....


Travis: Watching the NXT crowd in Florida tells me that the possibility of regional territories remains surprisingly viable, in principle. I wonder if instead of taking a singular NXT brand on the road, Triple H has considered creating, say, up to half a dozen different shows like NXT, each with its own roster and local championships, with one traveling NXT World Champion, too. They could all air weekly shows on the Network, on different days and maybe even at different times, each with a different flavor. Pick cities like Chicago, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, New York, Boston, Corpus Christi or Dallas, Montreal or Toronto, Atlanta or Charlotte, or wherever they have the most distinctive and reliable fan bases. Have them all be feeders for Raw and SmackDown, like the territories fed the WWF – but this time in a symbiotic rather than suicidal way.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Pro Wrestling: A Mark's History, part 2 (WrestleMania III Rocks My World)

Welcome back!  Now presenting Part 2 of A Mark's History....



As I said, the first feud in which I had an emotional stake was Savage vs. Steamboat, to the point that watching a Randy Savage promo made me physically angry.  Now I knew from the beginning that wrestling was "fake."  I knew the results were predetermined and that the guys weren't really trying to hurt each other.  However, I bought into Steamboat's throat injury completely.  I thought Savage had actually crushed Steamboat's larynx, and in my eleven-year-old mind the vignettes they showed of Steamboat going through therapy to regain his voice were indisputable proof.

The next angle that really got my blood boiling was when referee Danny Davis screwed the British Bulldogs out of the Tag Team Championship.  Very shortly after I started watching in the fall of '86, the Bulldogs became my favorite team.  One Saturday in January of '87 the Bulldogs were scheduled to wrestle the Hart Foundation - a heel team but one I had started to enjoy, mostly due to Bret Hart's quite obvious wrestling ability (I didn't know much at that age but on some level I recognized a good worker when I saw one.).  My reluctant fondness for the Harts evaporated very quickly however when Davis's atrocious officiating caused the Bulldogs to lose the straps.  I remember thinking, "There's no way this decision can stand."  Sadly this was the first time I encountered the old "referee's-decision-is-final" bit, and I was highly pissed.  The following week, WWF President Jack Tunney (who I thought was legitimately the head of the company - it wasn't until about a year later that I learned play-by-play commentator Vince McMahon was the real owner, which blew my mind) angrily announced that Davis was "suspended for life."  I actually stood up and cheered at this.  True, swift justice!

You sir, are pure scum!

Friday, May 22, 2015

Pro Wrestling: A Mark's History, Part 1 (How I Became a Wrestling Nerd)

Howdy!  Welcome to the first chapter of Pro Wrestling: A Mark's History!   Over the weeks and months (or however long I end up doing this) I’ll be publishing an ongoing memoir of my nearly three decades of wrestling fandom.

For this entry I’ll start by talking about how and why I became hooked on this bizarre phenomenon involving grown-ass men putting on tights and pretending to beat each other up.

Yup, I blame this stupid cartoon

It was just before my 11th birthday in 1986 that I officially became a wrestling fan.  All it took was one 60-minute episode of the syndicated Saturday morning WWF show to suck me in beyond all reason.  However it took me about four years to arrive there. 

I guess my first exposure to wrestling would've been going to see Rocky III, which of course featured Hulk Hogan in the famous "wrestler vs. boxer" scene.  Being only seven at the time, I found this sequence rather strange and confusing.  My stepfather, with whom I saw the film, explained to me that pro wrestling was nothing but simulated combat.  As is the case for many non-fans my first reaction was, "Well who'd want to watch fake fighting?"

Skip ahead a few years and Hulk Hogan popped up again, this time on his Saturday morning cartoon show, Hulk Hogan's Rock & Wrestling.  A terrible show to be sure, but 9-year-old me became enthralled with the characters of Hogan, Superfly Snuka, Roddy Piper, etc.  I still hadn't seen a single wrestling match, as the cartoon really had nothing to do with the in-ring product.  But it was the comic booky characters that drew me in.  Couple this with the release of the LJN line of WWF Wrestling Superstars toys, and it was the coolest thing since He-Man.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Fury Road, or Why I Love Mad Max

What is it about the Mad Max series that has resonated with me (and many others) for the past thirty years?  Why has its central character endured as an iconic dystopian anti-hero?  Why does this series of films with such barebones storylines and almost monosyllabic characters still inspire such fascination?

I've just seen the latest installment/rebirth, Mad Max: Fury Road, starring Tom Hardy in the titular role made famous by Mel Gibson, and it's left my brain swirling with so many varied thoughts and impressions.  Fury Road is one of the most unrelenting action vehicles (no pun intended?) I've ever seen.  Much like its predecessor The Road Warrior, it has the most basic of plots and tells almost the entire story through dazzling, kinetic action sequences.  Its hero has probably less total dialogue over two hours than one Joe Pesci scene in Goodfellas, and his purpose in the film is to assist Imperator Furiosa (Charlize Theron) in liberating five young women from the despotic Immortan Joe (Hugh Keys-Byrne, who was also The Toecutter in the original Mad Max), a cult leader who has kept them imprisoned as baby factories in his mountainous fortress called The Citadel.  Once Joe discovers his "wives" are missing, he sends his army of War Boys after them, and the extended action sequences take it from there.


Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Beer Brawl: Night Shift Brewing vs. Idle Hands Craft Ales

Welcome to a special beer-related column here at Enuffa.com!  Today I'll be comparing and contrasting two local Massachusetts breweries my wife Kelly and I visited over the weekend - Night Shift Brewing and Idle Hands Craft Ales, both located in Everett, MA.  Both companies have been making beer for about three years, but have taken very different approaches. 

Visiting these two breweries back-to-back strangely brought to mind the 2006 Christopher Nolan film, The Prestige.  If you aren't familiar, The Prestige starred Hugh Jackman and Christian Bale as rival magicians in Victorian England.  Jackman's character (Robert Angier) is a consummate showman who knows how to work a crowd and present his act in the most entertaining way possible, while Bale (Alfred Borden) is more of an introvert and student of the prestidigitation game, obsessed with creating groundbreaking illusions but initially unskilled at dressing up his act to garner the best audience reaction.  Remember that comparison for later....


Thursday, May 14, 2015

WWE Payback 2015 Predictions!!!

Jeez, it's already time for another WWE PPV?  Feels like we just had one three weeks ago.  Oh wait.....  And evidently we'll have ANOTHER of these "special events" in two weeks when Elimination Chamber returns.  Both of these events are free this month on WWE Network, cuz Vinny Mac wants to hook ya!


Anyway, Payback looks like a solid if unimportant show.  As of now only six PPV matches and a preshow match have been announced.  I'd love it if they'd keep the lineup to just those six matches.  Big fan of streamlined cards without clutter.  But I'm sure they'll add The Bellas vs. Naomi & Tamina.
***For the 2015 season, Justin leads Dan 11/16 to 10/16.***

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

DeflateGate, or How The NFL Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Mob (Mentality)

(Editor's Note: The following statements are the opinion of Enuffa Contributor Dan Moore and do not necessarily reflect the views of Enuffa.com or its management.............ah, who am I kiddin', he's 100% correct.)

   
FULL DISCLAIMER: I am from South Boston, Massachusetts. The Bay State. The home of revolutions and tea parties. I am an unabashed Boston sports fan. I love the Sox, Celts, B’s and of course the Pats. I’ll try to be unbiased in this piece but that’s almost impossible as we’re living in bizzaro world with this particular subject so my opinion is a tad skewed. You’ve been warned. Also, I’m gonna swear. A lot.
   
The NFL has laid down Thor’s fucking hammer on the most successful franchise of this millennium. In the last 15 years, The New England Patriots have won the AFC East 11 times, been to 9 AFC championship games, 6 Super Bowls and have won the big game 4 times, including this year. They are, without a doubt, the cream of the crop of the biggest sports entity in the world. They are also being dragged through the mud by that same sports entity.