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There is no way to encompass all of the topics I am going to discuss tonight under one simple headline, so I’m leaving today’s column without one.

I can’t go any further without mentioning the death of Eddie Fatu.  Umaga, to those who don’t obsess about knowing every wrestler’s real name.  Two days ago, he had a heart attack in his home, and after some time in a hospital, passed away after a second heart attack.  Fatu had just recently completed the Hulkamania tour, which, from the results I read on Wrestleview, appeared to be pretty “meh” at best.  Hogan beat Flair in every match they had (what a surprise), and there were a bunch of other matches that didn’t really seem to matter.  But I digress.  Fatu was, by far, one of the most talented, entertaining wrestlers in WWE before his untimely departure in June of this year.  He left because he had violated the Wellness Policy a second time, and refused to get any treatment.  What substance he was taking is unknown.  I’m not in a mood to speculate.  What does matter is that this is a real tragedy in my eyes.  To me, this is the toughest loss in wrestling since Chris Benoit (who I’m just now able to begin to watch his matches again after all this time).  There have been quite a few deaths in the two and a half years between Benoit’s and Fatu’s, but Fatu’s death hits home a lot harder because I have well-formed memories of his work.  I did watch WWF as a kid, and remember characters like Earthquake, Crush, and Sensational Sherri, but that was a long time ago.  Benoit I’d known about since his days in the Radicalz (I also watched WWF programming in the late 90’s, but quickly lost interest), and had many pleasant memories of his work in 2006 and 2007.  Fatu is similar.  His work from 2006 up until his departure from WWE was some of the best in the industry, not just Vince’s promotion.  Fatu was a special kind of talent.  He was a monster heel, but was tremendously athletic, flying around the ring, off the top rope, all while acting the part of a savage beast brought from the depths of Samoa.  He really was a great man, and he will surely be missed.  My thoughts go out to the Fatu family.

Now, on to a topic I never thought I would get the chance to discuss.  I consider myself to be of a reasonable opinion when it comes to the various wrestlers within Vince McMahon’s little empire.  So it always is a delight when I find that I am wrong about a certain person.  In fact, this past Friday, I was proven wrong twice.  Well, not completely wrong.  But I was definitely shown something I wasn’t expecting.  First, we received a face turn for one Eric Escibar.  And I found myself enjoying his promo with Vickie, if only because he was slandering her.  I don’t know how she does it, but she made me hate her with a passion upon returning to television.  But Escobar was funny and entertaining for the first time, and his handicap match with the Hart Dynasty was actually pretty decent.  It’s like WWE reads my column and then deliberately changes a character in order to spite me.  That, or I judge too quickly.  I dunno.  Anyway, Escobar’s flatlining career has just gotten a reviving jolt of energy from this sudden face turn, and I actually like it.  I’m hoping he continues on this path against Vickie Guerrero.  She can continue putting him in ridiculous matches, and he can attempt to show off what I can only hope is the skill that got him to TV in the first place.  Eric Escobar has earned a reprieve from my eternal hate list.  For now.

The other surprise I got was a pretty good match between John Morrison and *GASP* Drew McIntyre.  While I don’t think McIntyre should have won, he actually was able to keep up with Morrison, and Morrison made Drew look a hell of a lot better than any jobber could.  Morrison was on his game on Friday, and Drew kept up, which is impressive in and of itself.  I’m betting that they’re going to put the IC belt on McIntyre, overlooking Mr. Ziggles yet again.  Man, that guy can not catch a break, can he?  First, Mysterio refuses to drop the title to Ziggler, then Morrison wins the title from Mysterio when Rey has to go on suspension, and NOW McIntyre’s poised to take the strap away?  I would hate to be Dolph Ziggler right about now.  I hope he isn’t demoted further.  He has some real potential to be good.  Now, if McIntyre can follow up on that good match he had with Morrison, I might have to eat my words twice.

The last topic of the evening is one I wish wasn’t actually news, but sadly is.  There was a report a week or so ago that there are sources (unnamed, of course) saying Hulk Hogan shouldn’t ever show up at the Impact Zone for any TNA tapings because he doesn’t want to associate himself with “second-rate companies.”  I don’t even need to describe how idiotic that was, do I?  Anyway, NOW, just a day after the death of Eddie Fatu, Hogan goes on a UFC show and announces that Impact will air live on January 4th, for three hours, going head-to-head with Monday Night Raw.  Here’s a tip, TNA: don’t bother.  Funny thing is, you ARE a second-rate company filled with has-been wrestlers far past their prime and a writing staff full of wackos, maniacs, and nutjobs.  Trying to go head-to-head with the biggest wrestling show on TV is a foolish plan.  You will lose the ratings war.  And to any wrestling fans, if you’re planning on watching Impact instead of Raw, you’re probably an idiot too.  TNA has been an absolute joke the last couple of years, and I cannot forsee it beating Raw in the ratings at all.  It doesn’t matter if you’ve got Hogan signed.  He’s just a poor old sod desperate for media attention and another paycheck.  He doesn’t give a damn about your company.  If you were smart, you’d get rid of him and most of those has-beens leading your company and focus on what you started with: a bunch of talented young guys who can show up most WWE guys.  It probably won’t matter.  I think Hogan’s going to bleed TNA dry soon enough.  Then he’ll latch onto another unsuspecting promotion and run it into the ground as well.  He’s nothing but a leech.  We all just need to ignore him, and eventually he’ll go away.

I know I’m sounding overly harsh, but that’s why I write this.  If I can’t express my opinions (sometimes embellished here or there), what’s the point of writing anything?  At least there are people who read this column, so I can’t complain there.

Okay, that’s it for today.  I’ll be back later in the week with TLC picks (damn, it’s already here?), and in a couple of weeks, my end of the year awards.  Be sure to stay tuned.  Subscribe to the RSS feed if you don’t feel like checking back every day.  Until next time.

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One Comment

  1. RIP – Eddie Fatu, 36, nephew of the Wild Samoans & cousin of The Rock. In wrestling, he was the Samoan Bulldozer. Too bad he’s yet another pro wrestler who took too many steroids. He was so big it took 2 heart attacks to pin him! http://urdead2me.wordpress.com/2009/12/04/rip-eddie-fatu/


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