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Ask 411 11.19.08: The Macho/Taker Edition
Posted by Ryan Byers on 11.19.2008



Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, to Ask 411 Wrestling. If you have yet to pick up on it, I am not Chris Lansdell. Your normal party host is out this week due to a trip to a small island in the middle of nowhere. However, because Chris is one of the most unlucky sons of guns on the face of the planet, that means he's been shipped off to a tiny slice of tundra in the North Atlantic as opposed to a tropical paradise in the South Pacific.

Without Lansdell, you are saddled with me. I'm Ryan, and my previous experience with this column involved filling in for Mr. Steve Cook for four weeks in January and February of 2007. Now, almost two years later, I am back once more to answer your questions related to our favorite pseudo-sport.

Let's head right in to that, shall we?

Cleaning Up



If I were a lazier man, I would refuse to do this because I did not write the column last week and therefore made no mistakes. However, because I do not wish to shortchange you, the 411 faithful, I'm going to go ahead and weight in on some of the comments from the November 12 edition of the column:

First of all, the vast majority of the comments were on the issue of whether Alex Shelley is an asshole or a cool guy. One person would post a story about how the former member of the Embassy shot their dog and slit their grandmother's throat, after which a different person would post a story about how the Michigander raised all of the money to build a hospital for orphans and then did ninety percent of the labor by hand.

So is Alex Shelley a smash-up guy? Is he a total prick? For all of the discussion that went on regarding this topic, I'm amazed that nobody came up with the real answer:

Alex Shelley is a human being. He has his good days, and he has his bad days. Sometimes he's in a great mood and will be nice, and sometimes he's in a bad mood and will not be so nice. He's exactly the same as each and every one of us.

Was that so hard?

Nick Nitro writes:

WRESTLING GROUPIES. I work in Camden, NJ and a lady I work with, who is about 54 years old was a wrestling groupie. Her and three friends always followed, stayed, and slept with wrestlers. She was one of Superstar Billy Graham's main squeezes. Has some of the best stories you'll ever hear.

Being inside a food store at a gas station while some big dude grabbed her ass twice and said both the Wild Samoans gripped the guy up outside and told him they'd chop his "little baby head clean off"' if the dude didn't apologize, which of course he did.

And some not so good ones, like Ric Flair getting drunk and falling in his hotel room, knocking on her door naked and asked to get bandaged up. (She noted that Flair was hung like a horse, like HUGE.) More info then most of us wanna know, but its still funny.

Funny ones like driving with Hulk Hogan and smoking weed in the car with him "while he was saying "Fuck McMahon, I want that belt right now, tonight."

If you ever get a chance to talk to a former wrestling groupie, then do it. They have the best wrestling stories you'll ever hear.


Well, if that Hogan story is true (and I'm not saying that it is . . . BROTHER), I guess we now know what the relationship is that resulted in Rob Van Dam appearing on a recent edition of Celebrity Championship Wrestling.

Hawkeye lives up to his name in pointing out this Lansdellicious error:

I watched that Royal Rumble with Maven eliminating the Undertaker last night, coincidentally. You're wrong though. Taker got back in, tossed Maven through the ropes, chair shot, then he threw him back in again and actually tossed him over the top before leading him up to the popcorn machine.

I would pop in my own copy of the DVD to confirm this, but I don't care enough. As result, I'll side with the Hawk just because it allows me to bust this out in regards to Lansdell's performance last week . . .



In Soviet Russia, 411 Ask You!



Jesus, Lansdell, I implore you to come up with a better name for this section of the column.

In any event, the question that Chris posed to everybody last week read a little something like this:

I've appeared on WCW and WWE programming. I'm a former champion in WWE who was involved with an obnoxious heel character for most of my run, but in WCW I was mostly comedy relief. I was involved in a group in WCW with several others that would go on to compete and appear in WWE, and one who would appear in TNA. I've also performed extensively in Japan under a typical Japanese wrestling name. Who am I?

According to my colleague, the answer he was looking for was Rhonda "Bertha Faye" Singh. She is obviously a former WWF Women's Champion who was saddled with "obnoxious heel character" Harvey Whippleman. In WCW, she was mainly played up for laughs and was involved with the Nitro Girls, many of whom would move on to WWE at one of whom (Sharmell "Paisely" Sullivan/Huffman) would eventually wind up in TNA. Singh also competed in Japan under the name Monster Ripper.

For what it's worth, Lansdell disagrees but I believe that Johnny "The Bull" Stambolli is also an acceptable answer since he is a former WWE Hardcore Champion who associated with many obnoxious heel characters throughout his career. (Tony Mamaluke, Nunizo, and Big Vito all spring to mind.) In WCW, he was part of the Natural Born Thrillers, many of whom wound up in WWE and one of whom (Mike Sanders) wound up in TNA. He also had a run in Japan as an imposter of the Great Muta, known simply as MUTA.

This week, I will provide you all with my own "Who Am I?" question:

I had relatively brief runs in both WWE and the original ECW, but I gained the majority of my fame outside of my home country. An early gimmick of mine was an homage to one of my professional wrestling idols, as I used his name and occasionally his famous finishing hold. In WWE I had to stand by and watch two of my stablemates fight it out in a rare televised heel versus heel match for a championship. Who am I?

If you want to attempt an answer, feel free to leave it below in our comments section.

Question Time



Danny Boy's less popular brother Johnny Boy, who never had an Irish folk song written about him, gets the ball rolling for us.

I'm an old skool wrasslin' fan (those of you too young to remember the Monday Night Wars, I pity you...), anyway, 2 questions from the old days:

I'm going to cut you off before you even ask your questions and note that, if the Monday Night War era is now considered "old school," that makes me ancient.

1. At Royal Rumble '91, Randy Savage failed to come out. What's with this? It was never explained at the Rumble itself, was it subsequently explained in WWF programming?

I guess we'll start things off with a softball. Earlier in the show, Randy Savage interfered in the Ultimate Warrior's WWF Title defense against Sergeant Slaughter. As a result of Savage's intervening, the Warrior lost the strap. Savage's failure to appear for the Rumble match was explained as the Macho Man attempting to avoid a premature death at the hands of the enraged former champion.

Of course, this set up Wrestlemania VII, with Warrior defeating Savage in a career-ending match and Hulk Hogan getting a title shot against Slaughter in the tasteless Iraq war-fueled storyline.

2. At Bash at the Beach '96, as Hogan is giving his famous heel promo, a fan tries to enter the ring and is clocked by Scott Hall. Was this a work or a shoot? I've heard both, so it would be good to settle it once and for all.

It was legitimate. All you have to do to answer the question is take a look at the video tape. The kicks that Scott Hall throws to that poor bastard's head are not working kicks.

Andrew keeps the questions about the Macho Man rolling in. DIG IT!

Why did the ''Macho Man'' Randy Savage stop wrestling towards the end of 1992 and begin to commentate in WWE broadcasts?

I think that you might be a little bit confused on either your timeline or the frequency of Randy Savage matches in the early 1990's. Savage wrestled pretty regularly through the end of 1992 and was in fact still embroiled in his feud with Ric Flair in the year's closing months. This resulted in Savage and a freshly turned Mr. Perfect defeating Flair and partner Razor Ramon at the Survivor Series that year. (Perfect was serving as a last-minute replacement for the Ultimate Warrior, who was canned by the Fed for, well, being the Ultimate Warrior.)

It is true that Randy was frequently seen as WWF announcer during this time. However, Savage continued to wrestle regularly in the WWF throughout 1993 and 1994, including a feud against Crush and a bizarre mini-rivalry with Doink the Clown during the early days of Monday Night Raw that saw Randy unveil a little person wearing a Macho Man Halloween mask, who he dubbed the "Macho Midget." The Savage Mini-Me was used to counteract the multiple Doinks who were seen around WWF rings at the time . . . but the real irony is that the guy who was playing the Macho Midget, long-time Quebecois wrestler Tiger Jackson, would be rechristened as Doink's sidekick Dink just months later.

What you may be thinking of is the time that Savage spent out of the ring and exclusively in the announce booth throughout 1991, which in storyline was due to his losing the "retirement match" to the Ultimate Warrior that we referenced all the way back in question number one.

One of my favorite readers from back in the day, Eddie Chicago, has been inspired by the Taskmaster in asking this question.

I've recently watched a few Kevin Sullivan Shoot Interviews and he mentions on several occasions how when he booked he would tell wrestlers "Why do you care about losing? There isn't a book where people are writing down wins and losses."

Is there a Book? Actually, is there any place that keeps statistics in wrestling? Every other sport keeps very detailed statistics, is there any website where they list a wrestlers win loss record? I would love to see someone like HHH's Win - Loss record. I know that this is hard with House shows, Kayfabe, etc. but I think there is probably enough info out there to compile this sort of info.


I've got a lot of respect for Sullivan and think that he gets a lot of undeserved flack as a booker from internet critics because of some of the "behind the times" concepts he employed while in control during the dying days of WCW. Yet, in the case of his implying that wins and losses don't matter, he is absolutely wrong. Yes, there have been a few rare instances of men who can lose and lose and lose and for whatever reason remain perpetually over and keep drawing. (The Rock and Ric Flair spring to mind immediately.) However, in the vast majority of instances, if a wrestler continually loses or loses a few key matches, fans can get the impression that the company is never going to get behind him in a major way. This in turn results in fans not getting behind the guy in a major way. If you want an easy example, look no further than Rob Van Dam in 2001 and early 2002. During the peak of the WCW/ECW Invasion, he was getting crowd reactions that rivaled Steve Austin. Yet, once he choked in several key title opportunities and got splattered against the mat by the Undertaker, he quickly became "just another guy" and, though he remained a popular midcard act, wasn't the same for several years until the ECW revival propped up his career for a bit.

I know that wasn't your question, but I had to stall for a little while because the actual question can be answered in one word:

No.

Granted, after saying this some punk kid will probably point me to some desolate corner of the internet that has five regular visitors in order to prove me wrong, but I've been around the block a few times in this wacky world of wrestling fandom and have never once been made aware of a website, magazine, or other resource that comprehensively tracks wrestlers' wins and losses, nor have I ever heard of anything like that in the wrestling industry proper.

The closest I have seen anybody come was the crew over at DDT Digest, a hell of a WCW fansite from the heyday of the Monday Night War which did in fact track the entirety of the promotion's win/loss records during its peak years, even including house show results thanks to resources like the Wrestling Observer. The archives of the DDT Digest win/loss project are still up here.

Also, though he doesn't necessarily track wins and losses (or at least doesn't admit to doing that publically), Chris Jericho does keep a log of all of his matches which was at one point available through his official website. I was unable to find the whole thing after a quick search, but he does still have available a favorite match list, which is pared down from the whole log.

I've never seen anybody come as close to undertaking this task as DDT Digest did. However, completely by coincidence, somebody did post this thread in the 411 Fan Forums not long after I received this question.

Speaking of guys who regularly write in to 411 columns, here's Manu Bumb.

so I'm watching AAA from the end of sept right now (I'm a little behind on my lucha), and instead of the traditional 6 sided ring, they've got a 4 sided ring.

any idea why the 6 sided ring wasnt there for this taping?


I haven't followed lucha libre regularly for quite some time now, so you're probably asking the wrong guy. However, after doing a little bit of digging, I have come up with an educated guess.

When I had my finger on the pulse of lucha a little bit better (the 1990's), wrestling promotions didn't usually tour the country with huge trucks carrying their own rings like WWE does in the United States. Instead, arenas would own the rings and wrestling promotions would simply use whatever was available in the building. It looks like at least one of the late September AAA shows from this year was taped in Tlahuelilpan, which is one of the smaller markets in which the company is going to run TV. If it's still true that AAA isn't touring with its own rings, then they may have just been stuck with what the smaller Tlahuelilpan arena had.

Of course, as I said, that is a complete and utter guess. Anybody in the comments section is free to help me out, and, if that doesn't work, I would suggest visiting the luchablog and asking around there.

Matthew has three questions, two of which tend to show that he's far too detail oriented for his own good.

What's the story behind the yellow and black ropes at Wrestlemania 9 and 10. I guess it sorta made sense for 9, but what about 10?

You're probably overthinking this one. It's a simple answer: whoever designed the set decided to go with a color scheme that involved a lot of black and gold, and then they decided to coordinate the color of the ring with the rest of the set. I would assume that gold was chosen for 'Mania X because it was promoted as being a big anniversary for the event, and gold coloring always adds that "special" feel.

If you want to talk about black and gold items at WMX, though, you should forget about the ring. The real highlight of the night was the PHAT suit that Jim Cornette donned for the occasion.



Now that is an outfit that just screams "heel manager." Shame I couldn't find a better picture of it.

I vaguely remember WCW's ropes being like purple, yellow and something else. I also sorta remember the colours changing depending on the show. Do you have any clarification on this and if there was any particular reason behind this or was it just something they didn't really put a lot of thought into?

You are correct. WCW did have purple and yellow ropes for some of its shows, most notable in the early 1990's on WCW Saturday Night. The official colors of the promotion were purple and gold at the time and remained that way until the wrestling's "edgy" period started in the latter half of that decade and everything turned black.

As far as different shows having different rope colors is concerned, it depends on what you mean by "different shows." If you're talking about WCW Saturday Night having different colored ropes than WCW Main Event which in turn had different colored ropes than WCW {Pro}, it had a lot to do with the fact that the shows were all taped on different sets, all with their own distinct look. As with the Wrestemanias discussed above, the colors of the ring were in all likelihood coordinated with the colors of the set. If you're talking about different episodes of the same show having different colored ropes, then, you're right, it's probably something that they didn't think about too much.

Also, if you're so bored during wrestling shows that you pay this much attention to the ropes, you may want to look in to other hobbies.

Why doesnt WWE give their "entertainers" acting classes? I don't find it very entertaining to watch people who can't act try to act.

You may not find it entertaining, but enough people do that WWE is still a company which makes millions upon millions of dollars in pure profit every year. That's probably why they don't shake up the status quo too much.

A very fun question to research is posed by Brad.

Who has wrestled under a mask in the most different gimmicks? And what were all of them. It looks like Jack Victory would have to be pretty high on that list.

As with many of the questions posed her in Ask 411, a lot of the answer depends on what you want to count. If you're attempting to count every instance in which a wrestler has thrown on a hood and wrestled one match as a job guy under a generic name like "Dr. X" or "The Executioner," it's not going to be possible to get an accurate count. That's why I've confined my search to those situations in which the wrestler either competed regularly under his masked persona or at the very least appeared on a major show or as part of a major angle under the gimmick.

There are more instances of wrestlers having two separate masked personas than I could even begin to list here. However, I will give a few examples:

- Hector Guerrero won the NWA Jr. Heavyweight Title as Lazer-Tron and then infamously moved on to the WWF as the Gobbledygooker.
- Seven footer Ron Reis was the Dungeon of Doom's Yeti and also did a few shots as a jobber under the name "Super Giant Ninja."
- Brad Armstrong played Arachnaman in WCW and was also the masked Freebird Fantasia, a name which was later changed to Badstreet due to a legal dispute.
- Sara Del Rey wrestled in Mexico as American Angel and briefly appeared in WSX as Nic Grimes.
- Mike Enos, perhaps better known as one half of the Beverly Brothers, also wore a mask as half of two other tag teams. He and Beverleys partner Wayne Bloom were both under hoods as the Minnesota Wrecking Crew II, and Enos was also the Masked Skyscraper for one night only in WCW.
- Steve Corino is Monster C in HUSTLE, and he currently works indies as Mr. Wrestling III.
- Konnan was one of two men to play Max Moon in the WWF, and he also originally wore a mask with the Konnan name in Mexico.
- The other Max Moon was Paul Diamond, who in a previous life was Kato of the Orient Express.
- Jerry Lynn was Mr. JL in WCW and also donned a hood while touring with Michinoku Pro in Japan to play Gorgoda Cross.

Things start to thin out quite a bit when you start looking for guys who have played at least three different masked roles on a somewhat regular basis. If you want to count facepaint used to conceal a wrestler's identity as a "mask," Bill Eadie has three gimmick as the Masked Superstar, Super Machine, and Axe of Demolition. Steve Lombardi would similarly have three as Kim Chee, one of the Doinks, and Abe "Knuckleball" Schwartz.

To really find some folks who have spent significant amounts of time hiding their identities, though, you have to head south of the border and in to Mexico. The average luchador goes through several gimmick overhauls in his career, some involving masks and some not. A fine example is Leonardo Carrero, who started his career as Caballero 2000, upgraded to a new mask as Ultraman 2000, briefly appeared in WCW as Galaxy, and gained most of his fame under paint as Damian 666 for a total of four different masked personas. Also netting four different masked looks is fellow luchador Silver King, who started off with a mask under that name and would later wrestle as Black Tiger III (picking up the Japanese gimmick established by Marc Rocco and Eddy Guerrero), Bronco, and Ramses (his character from Nacho Libre which he used on a few wrestling shows while the film was in theaters).

Even Silver King and Damian have to bow down to the true master of the mask, though. The one man who I could find with more masked personas than any other is . . .

JORGE RIVERA~!

Rivera, who is world renowned for his work as a trainer in Ultimo Dragon's Dragon Gym system and who has developed a bit of a cult following in the United States for his work in CHIKARA, is a twenty-plus year veteran of the professional wrestling world. The earliest gimmick of Rivera's which I was able to confirm was La Flecha, which translates to "the arrow" and saw him prance around in a green, Robin Hood-inspired outfit. From there he became the wrestling missionary Seminarista. After that, he hit one of the lower points of his career, being reduced to palling around with a stable of wrestlers who stole their gimmicks from a popular children's television show. Yes, Rivera was at one point "Power Raider Blanco" which I would say is an embarrassing gimmick if not for the fact that there was a quartet of luchadors a few years ago who were wrestling as Los Teletubbies.

Things got a bit better for Jorge after that, as in the late 1990's and early 2000's he would have runs under the names Elektra, Destello, and Boomerang with each getting its own wacky, multi-colored bodysuit. It was in between those three gimmicks that he adopted the Skyade gimmick that most folks associate with him. He lost his Skayde mask to Mistico on March 31, 2007, though you never know when he might pop up with a new look.

So, for those of you who were too lazy to count on your own, that's a whopping SEVEN different masked gimmicks, and, if he's got that many, chances are good that he's also go two or three others that I was unable to confirm. It doesn't look like anybody will be knocking Skayde off this perch for a while unless they go out of their way to try.

Anthony wants some backstory on the rivalry between Big T and Double J.

I have a question about a feud at least 15 years ago. I remember one Saturday morning watching WWF Superstars (I think thats what it was called i was like 9 at the time) and Ahmed
Johnson was in the ring then good ol JJ comes to the ring and dismantles his guitar on Ahmed head the dude didn't even blink i was so amazed at the no sell it was awesome but i was wandering what the hell was their feud about.


The spot with the guitar that you're thinking of was the finish to a match between Jeff Jarrett and Ahmed Johnson at the 1996 Royal Rumble. That match was set up at the December 1995 version of In Your House. Johnson had just defeated "Nature Boy" Buddy Landell in under a minute and was being interviewed by Jerry Lawler. The interview was actually a setup for Jarrett, who had been out of the WWF for several months after losing the Intercontinental Title to Shawn Michaels, to attack Johnson from behind. The scene was actually quite similar to the Rumble finish, as Jarrett broke a frame containing a gold record over the head of the Pearl River Powerhouse, only for Ahmed to no sell it and chase him back to the locker room. The funny part is that, while Jarrett was away from the WWF, he was working in his father's USWA promotion in Tennessee. Who did he beat for the USWA Title while he was there? You guessed it . . . Ahmed Johnson.

Also, the most impressive part of the Rumble '96 match between these two is not that Johnson takes the guitar shot and gets back up. It's that Johnson performs the sloppiest no hands plancha that you will ever see in your life, seemingly lands smack dab on the middle of his head on the concrete floor, and somehow manages to not break his neck. THAT was impressive.

Let's talk about the Undertaker, thanks to Boy Liilii. (I'm told he's no relation to Boy George.)

i got 3 questions about the undertaker.

That's quite the coincidence, because I have three answers about the Undertaker.

1. other than the undertaker do any other veterans get called by their wrestling names by other wrestlers?

Yes. In fact, most wrestlers will refer to other wrestlers by their stage names or some variant thereof. If you listen to a shoot interview and Triple H is discussed, chances are good you're going to hear him called "Hunter" and not "Paul." Even though Mick Foley has used his legitimate name on television now for many years, you'll still here the majority of wrestlers who came up with him referring to him as "Cactus."

2. do veterans call the undertaker - undertaker or mark? like what does ricky steamboat, harley race, etc call the undertaker?

I have not been around for any of their personal conversations, but every time I have heard another wrestler talking about the Undertaker while out of character, they have referred to him using some variant of the Undertaker name.

3. how does the locker room court go? do the wrestlers who have issues go to see the undertaker and he settles it?

Generally a "wrestlers' court" isn't used by two wrestlers who have issues with one another to resolve those issues. In WWE, there is a certain code of conduct that wrestlers must follow while in the locker room and on the road. (An example of this would be certain ex-WCW talent, particularly referee Billy Silverman, getting heat during the Invasion because they paid to have their WWE-issued plane tickets upgraded to first class.) When a wrestler is perceived by the veteran members of the locker room including guys like Taker or JBL as having violated the unwritten rules of life with WWE, that wrestler is brought to the back for a "trial" in which he is given an opportunity to explain himself and ultimately given some kind of punishment.

Though most fans have only heard of this phenomenon within the last few years, apparently it has been going on for quite a while, as, in this recent interview with IGN, Randy Savage mentions wrestlers' court taking place backstage while he was with the WWF.

God, could we mention Randy Savage a few more times during this column?

More fun with the Brothers of Destruction is brought to us by Mike

My question is about the Undertaker / Kane storyline.

Oh, Christ.

I know you like the biker better, but bare with me.

Actually, that's the other guy. Aside from the Russo-influenced worked shoot stuff about being an "actor" who "started to take his role too seriously," from a character standpoint my favorite incarnation of the Undertaker is probably the fellow that we saw during the Ministry of Darkness.

From a wrestling standpoint, he's probably had the best matches of his life within the last two or three years. Taker is like wine . . . the older he gets, the better he gets.

I have always thought it was one of the most thought out and intricate gimmicks of all time, but i was wondering how much do we actually know about their history? Kane's book a couple years ago shed some more insight into it, and i know there are some old paul bearer promos, but
what exactly is the full story of Taker, Kane, their family, and Paul Bearer. (you may exclude katie vick if it pains you too much).


I've not read Kane's book, so you're on your own in that regard. However, if you want the Readers' Digest version of the story, it goes something like this:

In 1997, the Undertaker and Mankind were in the middle of a heated feud which saw Taker's long-time manager Paul Bearer turn on the Dead Man. At the WWF's Revenge of the Taker pay per view, UT hit Bearer with a fireball which left him bandaged up for a while. It was at this point that Paul started making threats that, if the Undertaker did not rejoin him, he would reveal a deep, dark secret from the past. Initially, Taker gave in to the pressure and joined Bearer's stable alongside Mankind and Vader. However, tension between the heels and the Taker lead to that trio falling apart and Bearer ultimately choosing to reveal the secret.

You see, despite prevailing opinion at the time, the Undertaker was not a soulless, emotionless zombie from another plane of existence. He was a human being just like you or I . . . a human being with a family. Specifically, he had parents and he had a brother. All three of them presumably died in a house fire which the Undertaker caused. Coincidentally enough, Bearer was the director for the funeral of those three individuals. He was also the guy who, for at least twenty years, managed to conceal the fact that Taker's brother Kane had actually lived through the blaze but was left badly burned. We got tangible proof of the Big Red Machine's existence at the Bad Blood pay per view in 1997, when he did a run-in after the Taker/Michaels Hell in a Cell match and spiked his brother's head in to the mat.

So, it turns out that the Undertaker was the one who set the fire the killed his parents and was thought to have killed his younger brother. Yeehaw. This lead to Kane making several attempts to set his brother on fire, as well as setting up the memorable segment in which Kane and Bearer dug up the remains of the Undertaker's parents and brought them to Monday Night Raw. I don't know how they robbed these graves without anybody noticing (much less prosecuting) them, but that would be the least of the Undertaker's problems. See, Kane managed to set one of the caskets on fire, after which he immediately chokeslammed his brother on to the other.

If Kane really was a huge, demented monster, you would think that he'd want to chokeslam his hated rival in to the fire, but that's no big deal compared to some of the other gaps in logic that we'd see later in the storyline.

Oh, did I mention that Paul Bearer is Kane's father? From the "you'd think they would have mentioned this earlier" file, Bearer decided to drop that bombshell after the angle had been going on for months, almost as though this was some kind of scripted television program and they all of a sudden needed new material with which to keep things going. Hmmmm . . . anyway, the portly Paul Bearer was apparently the apprentice at the funeral home in which Kane and the Undertaker were raised. While he was working there, he had sex with their mother, leading to Kane's conception. Yes, that's what this already suspect storyline needed, ladies and gentlemen, a mental image of Paul Bearer having sex.

Then, out of nowhere, the Undertaker and Kane were suddenly friends and ganging up on both Vince McMahon and Stone Cold Steve Austin. Then they were enemies again. Then they were friends. Then they were enemies. I'm not sure what they are now, but it seems to fluctuate every two years or so. Oh, and Kane wasn't really scarred up by the fire. He just THOUGHT he was, though we're not really sure what gave him that impression. We're also not sure why, if Kane wasn't really scarred, that Pat Patterson started having dry heaves when (off camera) he looked at Kane's unmasked face on an episode of Raw several years back. Oh, and despite the fact that Paul Bearer had him chained up in his basement or whatever it was for twenty years, Kane managed to sneak out and have a regular life as a teenager. After a rockin' party one night, he had a car accident caused by the fact that he didn't know how to drive stick. That killed his good friend Katie Vick. Triple H accused Kane of having relations with the corpse, and . . . well . . . wouldn't that be the kind of thing that you would immediately and vehemently deny?

Kane didn't, which is probably the weirdest part of the whole story.

Robbie Chastain moves us from the 6'10" Taker to the 6'10" Andre the Giant.

God, the kayfabe police are going to hunt me down and kill me for that one . . .

I had a question regarding what you were talking about last week in the comments about Andre and his "streak." Do you know of any incidents where Andre was pinned other than by Hogan at Wrestlemania? I know that he lost on several occasions by DQ and countout and if I remember right, the victory that Jerry Lawler got that you referred to was by countout I think and that supposedly it really teed off Vince McMahon Sr. who wanted Andre kept strong and thought that weakened him. Is there any other incidents where Andre was actually pinned and if so, by whom?

It was rare, but it happened. Legendary Mexican wrestler El Canek holds the distinction of both bodyslamming and pinning Andre well before Hulk Hogan did. The most notable example of this was probably on the ninth anniversary show of the UWA, the Mexican promotion which Canek was largely responsible for booking. Of course, given that he was the booker, Canek was the UWA Heavyweight Champion. He had a title defense against the massive Frenchman on the aforementioned anniversary show on February 12, 1984. He successfully retained the championship under best two of three falls rules.

Also, Japanese legend Antonio Inoki defeated Andre on an October 7, 1976 New Japan Pro Wrestling show in Tokyo's Sumo Hall. Though it was a victory by technical knockout and not pinfall, I think that method of winning is almost more decisive.

And, taking us right back to the Taker, it's Kevin.

I have a dark theme for my questions.

1) What the hell does The Undertaker say at the start of this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=37TiOS3iUas? This has bugged me for years.


For the benefit of those of you who may be reading an archived version of this column three years from now when the YouTube link that Kevin has provided is long-dead, what he is asking about is the phrase inserted between Taker's ominous laughs at the beginning of the version of his theme music which appears on WWF: The Music Volume 4. (Commonly referred to as his "Ministry theme.")

If you have in fact been wondering about this for years, Kevin, I hope that the answer does not disappoint you too badly.

You see, the Undertaker is not actually saying anything. The phrase that he utters is obviously intended to sound like Latin, but it is actually complete gibberish. Numerous horror movies and heavy metal albums throughout the years have used the same trick, essentially inventing Latin-sounding words and adding them in to their final products due to the fact that Latin sounds spooky and can add bone-chilling effect to anything which you wish to sound demonic.

2) In your opinion, do you think Undertaker will be done with wrestling in 2009? I know this pops up every year but it seems, now especially, that he's always being bogged down with some sort of injury and you've got to wonder how long the man's motivation will last with such injury
problems.


The Undertaker is one of those guys who I don't see being "done with wrestling" until he's done with life. In a pro wrestling world in which Hulk Hogan can still pop a buyrate and get a massive crowd reaction for a sporadic performance, Taker isn't going to hang it up completely and WWE isn't going to want him to hang it up completely until such a time that he's physically incapable of walking down the aisle. He's many, many years away from that point, so a 2009 retirement date makes no sense.

3) Do you think the 'E are likely to do special DVDs situated around certain feuds especially Edge vs. Taker (WM, Backlash, JD, ONS & SummerSlam) & HBK vs. Jericho (JD, Raw, GAB, Unforgiven & No Mercy) from this summer? Surely they would sell like nothing else.

Anything is possible, and it does appear that they're running out of material for the wrestler-specific DVD sets that they've been doing for the last several years. (Once you get a to a Kane set, you know you're scraping the bottom fo the barrel.) However, the second most popular DVD "concept" to reuse seems to be repackaging of classic pay per views, which leads me to believe that they'll start doing a lot more of those before they move on to specific rivalries, particularly if the upcoming Best of Starrcade release is a success.

And, with that question answered, it's time to wrap up my latest fill-in effort for 411mania. Chris Lansdell will be back fielding your queries in seven days. Be sure to e-mail plenty of questions about 1970's European wrestling to him. He LOVES answering those.





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