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Thread: The Ask Jim Thread

  1. #2621
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    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    Jim, am I the only 80s WWF fan with fond memories of the The Machines gimmick back in '86-87? In my memory, it was this big storyline and an awesome thing. Reading back on it, I don't think it was. I remember Hulk Machine and a few others, but I don't know if those matches where Hulk joined in were actually televised or not.

    Thoughts on the Machines?

  2. #2622

    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by indyfan View Post
    Hey Jim what are your thoughts on the Raven and Bagwell lawsuit about royalties as it pertains to the Network?

    Do you think that it's even plausible to set an amount of royalties based on a streaming service?

    Do you think it's fair that, if WWE goes the route of no more dvds/ blurays ( old wrestlers get royalties from this), to just streaming if it cuts out royalties checks for these guys?
    The short cop-out answer:

    It all depends on what the contracts state and more importantly, how those contracts are interpreted by a court. If a court rules that the likes of Bagwell and Raven deserves royalties from the WWE Network, then they deserve royalties from the Network.

    The more complicated personal opinion:

    I can see it from both perspectives. On one hand, if you're the WWE, you're going to claim that the WWE Network is not a piece of merchandise. When you pay for a subscription to the WWE Network, you're not technically buying anything. What you are doing is paying the WWE $9.99 to have access to their Network for one month's time. That's it - access. On the other hand, when you go on iTunes and you spend $13.99 to buy the digital version of the Royal Rumble 2015, you're actually buying an item of merchandise. Whether you have access to the actual digital file or if it remains up there in the cloud, that's yours. To compare it to something - home video rentals. Years ago, I can remember renting Royal Rumble 1991 Coliseum Home Video. I can't imagine someone like Dusty Rhodes received any sort of payment from my rental. At the same time, around 1998, I believe, I bought the VHS tape of Wrestlemania 6 when the WWE re-released it after WM 14. In that situation, I presume Rhodes received some sort of payment for that in his next royalties check.

    On the other hand, if I was Raven or Bagwell, I would point out that the WWE is essentially killing off their physical media division. It's 2017 and merchandise and media is entirely different compared to when those two talents signed their contracts. By not forcing the WWE to pay out royalties, the system would be allowing the WWE to skirt around the fact of the matter is that they merely found a way to release "Merchandise" that doesn't technically count as merchandise, thus finding a way to avoid paying out royalties. The problem with this stance is that it's basically just claiming "It's not fair!" and ultimately this is a business. What does being fair have to do with anything?

    Truthfully, I don't think the likes of Raven and Bagwell matter too much. Prior to the launch of the Network, how high were their royalties checks? In the case of Bagwell, he hasn't had anything the WWE has had access to release as part of merchandise since 2001. To give you a rough idea, using a May 2013 list form WWEDVDNews of every WCW match released on DVD up to that point, I counted up four Bagwell matches. Obviously, that number is now higher due to DVDs released since then and if any matches happened to be missing from the list, but I think we can agree that the present day number is going to be much higher than four. So based on that, it makes total sense why someone like Bagwell is trying to cash in on these WWE Network royalties. On one side is 4+ matches released on DVD and on the other side is 45 pages of results when you search "Bagwell" on the Network. At 10 results per page, even if you immediately throw out the majority of the pages due to duplicates (Match results chapters and full shows) just 10 pages of actual matches alone, you're looking at 100 matches. Quite the difference.

    Why I say Raven and Bagwell don't matter much is because what matters more to me is how today's wrestlers are treated. Take a guy like Braun Strowman for example. He's only been a part of the roster in this Network era. Right away, that means far less opportunities for DVD sales to influence his royalty checks. DVDs are barely selling anymore and few people are buying PPVs. Is the WWE taking care of guys like Braun to compensate them accordingly in this new era? Legally, if it's not in their contracts, I suppose the WWE can get away with not paying them a single thing from the Network. The "Right" thing to do in my eyes is to pay out bonus-like checks for every time you reach X amount of hours of content on the Network. For example, Strowman receives his first WWE Network bonus check the first time his matches and segments on the Network reaches...500 hours. Then he gets another check when he reaches 1,000 hours. I would think that by now, anyone that signed in this Network era (The Bobby Roodes of the WWE), should in their contracts state what all they should expect with payout in relation to the Network just so that it's 100% clear by all involved.

    Quote Originally Posted by Big Papa View Post
    Jim, am I the only 80s WWF fan with fond memories of the The Machines gimmick back in '86-87? In my memory, it was this big storyline and an awesome thing. Reading back on it, I don't think it was. I remember Hulk Machine and a few others, but I don't know if those matches where Hulk joined in were actually televised or not.

    Thoughts on the Machines?
    Probably?

    The biggest problem with the Machines is that while it was a vehicle for Andre to add heat to his feud with Bobby Heenan, it seemed as if he was barely even teaming with the Machines. The majority of the time, it was just Big and Super Machine and who could possibly care about that? A couple of the Machines matches with Hulk Machine and Piper Machine were released on Coliseum Home Video (Including one Hulk Machine on the recent Unreleased 1985-1995 DVD), but they were extremely rare. The entire act lasted about six months in the second half of 1986. That's it. Once 1987 began, they started the angle with Andre turning heel, Big Machine started working as Blackjack Mulligan again, and Super Machine started the Demolition act.

    Where the gimmick really suffered is that Big and Super Machine weren't supposed to be identifiable like Giant Machine. They were just two guys. Despite the fact that it was a big angle at the start, it quickly became irrelevant to the point where there wasn't a proper conclusion to the Machines. Ideally, if the Machines were going to work out, it needed to be comprised of two guys who everyone knew who they were, but the heels weren't able to prove it. For example, had the British Bulldogs lost a WWE Tag Titles vs Careers match against the Hart Foundation at WM 3 and suddenly the British Machines debuted a couple of weeks later. From there, there also needed to be an end game with the identities of the British Machines being revealed, but not before The British Machines help get their buddies, the British Bulldogs re-instated.

    I kind of like the idea of The Machines/Yellow Dog/Mr. America/Ect, but it seems like it's rarely done well enough.
    Last edited by Jim; 11-02-2017 at 02:22 PM.

  3. #2623
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    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    I think there are important things to remember too when it comes to the lawsuit:

    If anything happened from it (it won't), tons of content would be taken down and you'd rarely get a sniff of classic content. Additionally, while most people recognize this, guys like Raven and Buff are much more relevant thanks to the digital era and being seen by new audiences than they would be without the network, essentially giving them more value for appearances, bookings, signings, and merchandising. They're going to lose, and in some ways I do wish everyone could receive royalties, but they wouldn't, fans would just lose out.

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  4. #2624

    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Dook Gulak View Post
    I think there are important things to remember too when it comes to the lawsuit:

    If anything happened from it (it won't), tons of content would be taken down and you'd rarely get a sniff of classic content. Additionally, while most people recognize this, guys like Raven and Buff are much more relevant thanks to the digital era and being seen by new audiences than they would be without the network, essentially giving them more value for appearances, bookings, signings, and merchandising. They're going to lose, and in some ways I do wish everyone could receive royalties, but they wouldn't, fans would just lose out.
    Yeah, for sure. From a selfish perspective, I don't want Raven/Bagwell to be successful since we're talking about a huge amount of money that would have to be given out to everyone on the Network. It's a very safe bet that it would drastically effect how much older content is on the Network. It really goes beyond that though. If Bagwell and Raven are success, it could really hurt the business as a whole because if a precedent is set, what's going to stop indie talent from going after other streaming services? The rise of streaming has seemed to play a significant part in indie wrestling recovering after the recession nearly crippled it.

  5. #2625
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    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    Funniest piece of wrestlecrap that you have ever laughed at.

  6. #2626

    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by strange brew View Post
    Funniest piece of wrestlecrap that you have ever laughed at.
    I feel like the most obvious answer to that is The Shockmaster's debut at Clash of the Champions 24. It's a legendary botch on live TV featuring a talent that was supposed to be some major deal. It only got funnier once Shockmaster stood up and you realized that even without the botch, it's still a big guy wearing a storm trooper helmet with sparkles and wearing jeans and a jacket without sleeves. It's classic.

  7. #2627
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    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    What are your thoughts on Nick Bockwinkel? Do you think he is a big influence at all or just another big name for the time?
    "Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children.

    The cost of one modern heavy bomber is this: a modern brick school in more than 30 cities. It is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population. It is two fine, fully equipped hospitals. It is some 50 miles of concrete highway. We pay for a single fighter with a half million bushels of wheat.We pay for a single destroyer with new homes that could have housed more than 8,000 people... It is humanity hanging from a cross of iron."
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  8. #2628

    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Grim View Post
    What are your thoughts on Nick Bockwinkel? Do you think he is a big influence at all or just another big name for the time?
    The AWA isn't my expertise, especially when peak Bock was well before the majority of the main AWA footage we have access to watch. I've liked everything I've seen of Bockwinkel, but I can't talk about what sort of influence he truly was.

  9. #2629
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    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    You gave the Chamber of Horrors Match from Halloween Havoc '91 half a star. The Doomsday Cage Match from Uncensored '96 a quarter of a star.

    By direct comparison, which one is better and why ? (And yes, half a star is more than a quarter of a star, but still...)


    Also... Do you have a single moment in Hogan-Era-WCW, which you would describe as the most infuriating of 'em all ? I know this is a tough question, because of basically every PPV and many Nitro episodes had at least some infuriating stuff in it...but maybe you have a moment which would came always to your mind thinkin' about it.


  10. #2630

    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by The Bear Who Cried Lucha View Post
    You gave the Chamber of Horrors Match from Halloween Havoc '91 half a star. The Doomsday Cage Match from Uncensored '96 a quarter of a star.

    By direct comparison, which one is better and why ? (And yes, half a star is more than a quarter of a star, but still...)
    Doomsday Cage Match is far worse.

    Both matches are awful, but with Chamber of Horrors, you have an inoffensive pure WrestleCrap match. There's so much goofiness about it, but in all of the times I've watched it, I've never seen it as being actively offensive. Even in my review, I praised WCW for trying to come up with a new War Games-like match and that once the match failed, WCW recognized it and they didn't try booking the match again, unlike other failures like World War 3. Considering this was before Vader was truly doing anything and Cactus wasn't going to be booked in such a notable match, it's not as if we were denied any great looking matches, despite the babyface side being loaded with three great workers. Thanks to some El Gigante singles matches, Chamber of Horrors wasn't even the worst WCW match of the year. This is 1991, the first year I had to create an 1/8 * because of how awful a PPV match was. To my knowledge, I've only done that twice.

    Right away, one thing that the Doomsday did worse than Chamber of Horrors is that I knew exactly how Chamber of Horrors needed to end. With Doomsday, I had no idea. It just seemed to go on and on without any clear indiction of the ultimate goal. While Chamber of Horrors was four-on-four, allowing for the heels to not look bad in defeat, Doomsday was what...two-on-eight? Sure, it's Hogan and Savage, the top two babyfaces, but you're still sacrificing all of those heels. Keep in mind, Hogan and the officials knew that Hogan would be taking some time off for a few months shortly after this match, so they destroyed multiple heels for Savage and a guy who wouldn't even be around. Of course, the other massive issue is that these weren't just random heels. Lex Luger and Ric Flair especially were were in the top three for heels in the company at the time. They shouldn't have been involved in such a match especially with Flair, of all people, having to be the one beaten. That match was Hogan at his absolute worst, stroking his ego, without any logic being involved. Your 1996 WMOTY.

    Also... Do you have a single moment in Hogan-Era-WCW, which you would describe as the most infuriating of 'em all ? I know this is a tough question, because of basically every PPV and many Nitro episodes had at least some infuriating stuff in it...but maybe you have a moment which would came always to your mind thinkin' about it.
    I believe the biggest rant I've ever want on in a review was for Slamboree 2000 and WCW's decision to make it look as if Kanyon fell to his death in the arena that Owen Hart died in, one year to the month of Owen's death. Despite the claims, I don't buy the BS from Russo that he wasn't aware until told years later when I would think it would be impossible for anyone who was in that building in May 1999, to step foot in it again, without having flashbacks, especially as recent as just a year later.

    For as awful as Hulk Hogan was and gave me so many frustrating moments with booking, none of which can really compare to what Russo did with Slamboree 2000. That went beyond bad booking and was firmly something in very bad taste and actually offensive.

  11. #2631
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    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    Ok so I'm keeping the network through Mania. In the meantime I wanna try to get my money's worth since I don't really watch the product since I don't have cable. I've made it a mission to go back through the Monday night wars because, since I was so young, i missed the lead in to the attitude era and never watched any wcw. So I have a few questions to help streamline this:

    -Nitro seemed easy enough just starting with the first episode in 95. Am I best served just starting there and experiencing it as a whole? Or is there a better jumping off point? Additionally, is there anything WCW related I should definitely check out before the start of Nitro?

    -My WWF start was the 96 survivor series. I felt like that was early enough to catch the important Austin bits as well as pre dx so I could experience the formation and catch the full rise of Austin. Does this sound about right or am I still wasting time? I debated going back to see the actual beginnings of the stone cold character (again too young to have seen it) but didn't wanna miss important segments or promos by skipping through boring stuff. I'm like 3 episodes of raw after 96 survivor series. Is there anything pre 96 that really, really is important to See?

    Any advice you can give on making this easier would be appreciated.


  12. #2632

    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    *Clears away cobwebs in the thread*

    Quote Originally Posted by Coxatron View Post
    -Nitro seemed easy enough just starting with the first episode in 95. Am I best served just starting there and experiencing it as a whole? Or is there a better jumping off point? Additionally, is there anything WCW related I should definitely check out before the start of Nitro?
    Keep in mind, I am not a fan of WCW during the nWo era at all. Personally, I'd suggest ignoring that era and instead just focus on the good periods of WCW like 1988, the second half of 1989, the first half of 1992, and the first half of 1994. Check out my wrestling reviews archives to see which matches I rated high. You'd be missing a ton of great stuff if you only focus on nWo era WCW.

    But, sadly, this is about the Monday Night Wars, so I will begrudgingly focus on helping you out for this.

    You could start at the debut of Nitro, but that's nine months of waiting until the kick off to the nWo angle. Sure, those nine months are the Monday Night Wars, and frankly, I had more fun watching those episodes than the two hour nWo era shows by the end of 1996, but I think you'd be better off just skipping to the start of the nWo. It's also going to allow you to start roughly at the same time as you would for Raw. May 27, 1996 Nitro is where Scott Hall returned to WCW and that's where I'd suggest you start. If you wish to move a bit faster, you can only focus on watching the Hall and Nash segments from that first show until Bash at the Beach 1996 in early July. After Bash at the Beach, then you can dive fully into watching every Nitro starting with the July 9th episode of Nitro. You poor bastard.

    -My WWF start was the 96 survivor series. I felt like that was early enough to catch the important Austin bits as well as pre dx so I could experience the formation and catch the full rise of Austin. Does this sound about right or am I still wasting time? I debated going back to see the actual beginnings of the stone cold character (again too young to have seen it) but didn't wanna miss important segments or promos by skipping through boring stuff. I'm like 3 episodes of raw after 96 survivor series. Is there anything pre 96 that really, really is important to See?
    There's a few logical starts for the Attitude Era including going all the way back to post-Survivor Series 1995 with Diesel's heel turn being very Attitude Era-like. You could also skip all the way to March 10, 1997 episode of Raw, which is where it turned from an one hour Monday Night Raw into the two hour Raw is War. The nice thing is that this is just a couple of weeks before Wrestlemania 13, so you're seeing some of the last big moments of Bret losing his cool before the double turn.

    There's already a ton of hours you'd need to watch for the Monday Night Wars, so I'd recommend skipping over the "Prologue" and going straight to the start of the story. So that's:

    Nitro - July 9, 1996 (While watching the Outsiders segments since May 27th)
    Raw - March 10, 1997

    Are you going to miss a few early things? I guess, but through recaps and similar segments repeat, you're still going to have a good idea of what happened. Once you're done with this project, you could even do a new project of the WWE New Generation/Early Bischoff WCW years of late 1992-early 1996.

  13. #2633
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    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    I don't even really *want* to see all of the wartime stuff, including nwo because I've heard enough about how it falls apart. But I want to see the big things like goldberg/sting/all the good cruiserweight stuff and I feel like I just need to grit my teeth and bare through it.

    I think I started watching wrestling in like early 98 so I'll essentially "catch up" to where i started. But thanks for the bullet points that's gonna be a huge help in trying to actually get through it.


  14. #2634

    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Coxatron View Post
    I don't even really *want* to see all of the wartime stuff, including nwo because I've heard enough about how it falls apart. But I want to see the big things like goldberg/sting/all the good cruiserweight stuff and I feel like I just need to grit my teeth and bare through it.

    I think I started watching wrestling in like early 98 so I'll essentially "catch up" to where i started. But thanks for the bullet points that's gonna be a huge help in trying to actually get through it.
    Most of the big stuff of the Monday Night Wars took place after the starting dates I gave you, so it still fits. I covered the first five and a half months of Nitro, so maybe glance through those reviews and see if anything stands out as worth checking out.

  15. #2635
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    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    Will do. Thanks jimothy


  16. #2636
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    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    Was the finish to sid/hbk at survivor series 96 botched? The whole camera thing? It came off super awkward and was just a shit finish anyway lmao


  17. #2637

    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Coxatron View Post
    Was the finish to sid/hbk at survivor series 96 botched? The whole camera thing? It came off super awkward and was just a shit finish anyway lmao
    Botched in what way? It was always planned to have the angle with the ref bump, Sid attacking Jose Lothario, and the use of the camera to set-up the finish. This is the time period where I firmly believe that Vince Russo was starting to get his ideas presented on television. Regardless of whatever anyone tells me, this November 96-Feb 97 period truly feels different from what the WWE was doing before hand. Suddenly, the main event scene was comprised of nearly all tweeners. You had Bret and Shawn both being babyfaces, but starting to show off an attitude. Sid, a babyface, was doing a lot of heel actions. Bulldog, a heel, was involved in a forgotten feud against fellow heel, Austin, where Bulldog came across as a face, despite still teaming with heel, Owen. Even though the midcard and lowcard scene was still being booked traditionally with clear old fashion babyfaces and heels, there were a couple of midcarders like Goldust and Mero starting to show different attitudes. Russo loves tweeners and at this point in time, it seemed as if babyfaces vanished (Even a babyface like Taker, is still wrestling other babyfaces) and all that was left were heels and tweeners.

    So yeah, it was a planned angle to allow Sid to act a bit heelish and to give Michaels a reason to showcase more of a dickish attitude, while also setting up a rematch at Royal Rumble 1997.

  18. #2638
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    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    Botched in that it just didn't seem to happen the way it was supposed to. Like hebner got in between sid and Shawn and the whole sequence just seemed off. Which made the aftermath feel flat


  19. #2639

    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Coxatron View Post
    Botched in that it just didn't seem to happen the way it was supposed to. Like hebner got in between sid and Shawn and the whole sequence just seemed off. Which made the aftermath feel flat
    I re-watched the finish on the WWE Network and I can see what you mean. In the lead up to Sid grabbing the camera, I did notice a lot of talking between the wrestlers and the referee, which could mean something was changing (Having to go home sooner than expected?) That could explain why one or multiple parties were a bit loss for a moment. There's a few possibilities:

    A) Sid was under the false impression that Hebner was supposed to see him hit Lothario and was waiting for Hebner to realize this and turn around

    B) Hebner was under the false impression that he wasn't supposed to see the camera shot, but since it was taking so long, he decided to finally look

    C) Michaels was supposed to come at Sid to prompt the camera shot, but since he didn't Sid was waiting to see what he should do

    D) Everything that happened was supposed to happen, but Sid is just awful at timing

    I've seen the match several times since watching the show live on PPV, but the awkwardness never stood out to me.

  20. #2640
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    Re: The Ask Jim Thread

    Haha yeah I was like wtf is going on this is so bad. Then they did the spot and I was like "oh even 96 wwe was like this"

    I thought the match was pretty good up until that


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