OWW Editorial: Some Zest From The Quest
May 29, 2006 by Kirsty Quested
Yes, I know how long it's been since the Zest made an appearance - five months. Holy crap, has it really been that long? I swear - the older I get, the faster time flies, whether I'm having fun or not.
Luckily for me, the past five months has been given over to all kinds of fun, not the least of which was WWE's first appearance in New Zealand. On March 4, the event we'd all been anticipating for months was finally here, and with NZPWI as part of the organisational team, it had been a very busy time. I won't go into all the details of this momentous event now, but if you're remotely interested, you can toddle on over to NZPWI and read my account of it here.
I would, however, like to give WWE - and SmackDown especially - their props for putting on a hell of a show in the freezing autumn weather (the show was at an outdoor stadium, and Wellington weather was living up to it's unpredictable best with some unseasonal temperatures. Randy Orton was not impressed), especially given that the SmackDown curse was in full swing. Christian, Eddie, Batista, Kennedy and Christy Hemme were all absent, and even JBL wasn't able to wrestle. He did, however, make the trip all the way out here just to tell us we're all a bunch of sheep-shaggers. He also insulted our national game - rugby - and was lucky to escape Wellington with all his teeth. No, not really. We all very much appreciated that he had made the trip even though he was injured, yet another example of his total dedication to the business.
Back here on OWW, the Columns section has been undergoing some changes, as you may have noticed. It's probably a good time to talk about some of them, as I think there've been a few misunderstandings, and I'd also like to clarify one or two things.
Firstly - and I know I say this in every Editorial, but since it keeps getting ignored, I'll keep banging on about it - please, please, PLEASE read and respect the 10 Commandments For Columnists. I can't count how many people are sending their columns as attachments, ignoring the 3-week rule, and most of all, jumping all over the 5th Commandment - No WWE or TNA Analysis. At the risk of sounding like a sad, reactionary old git, I must emphasise once again that the rules exist for very good reasons and are not about to change. Sending us pissed-off emails because we rejected your column on the grounds that you broke the 5th serves only to frustrate us. Please don't take it personally. Insulting JT and myself, however, will ensure that WE will take it personally, and are likely to ignore any further submissions you may send.
The thing is, grasshoppers, is that OWW is unique in its Columns section. We are unlike any other wrestling website in that we don't have a fixed staff of columnists with deadlines. We have Official Columnists (and I'll get to them in a moment), but they are not OWW staff and they are not the only columnists on the site. OWW is the only website *I* can think of where anybody may submit a column. Because of this, we have to implement rules to govern the standard. Lords of Pain are similar, in that anyone can post a column, but the postings are in their forums section, not on the main page itself. It's not until a columnist over at LoP has really established themselves that they get a main page shot. Here at OWW, anyone can submit a column for the main page, but to ensure a decent quality, there are rules. JT and I uphold those rules. And I'm sorry to be so harsh, but if you don't like it, then let me be the first to encourage you to seek life elsewhere. I really hate to have to use language like that, but believe me, it's mild compared to some of the emails we receive if we've rejected a column. To sum up, my young padawans, respect the rules, and respect the Editors.
Getting back to Official Columnists, I think there have been some misunderstandings about them, and what it takes to become one, so let me clarify. JT and I keep a close eye on people who submit columns regularly, and every now and again will decide that someone has proven themselves over and above just obeying the 10 Commandments. We will elevate someone's status if they consistently show a high quality in their writing, if they choose interesting subjects to write about, if they understand and obey all literary rules, and above all, if they obey the 10 Commandments each and every time. This is when JT and I put our heads together and consider them for an OC position.
OC's are not paid (none of us at OWW are), but they do get their name in the Columnist section, as well as a link to all their work. Additionally, if you click on the Columns link it will say "Official" next to their name. It's our way of recognising the high quality of their work.
So how do I become an OC? I hear you ask. First of all, you must have submitted at least 4 columns which are consistently of a high standard, and which have obeyed the 10 Commandments. If either JT or I have given you literary advice, you need to show that you've taken it on board and reflect it in your work. You need to have a better than average understanding of prose and journalism, and you need to be extremely conscientious when proof-reading (the less editing JT and I have to do, the more we like you). And of course, you need to have a broad knowledge of professional wrestling and be able to discuss the aspects of the industry intelligently and with an open mind.
We do understand, however, that not everyone is capable of either the quality or the length required for a column to be on the main page, and this is why the Fan Jam exists. Columns that are shorter in length, and perhaps not of main page quality, find a home in the Fan Jam. However, the 10 Commandments still apply to Fan Jam pieces, and are just as susceptible to being rejected if they fall short of the rules.
With that out of the way, I'd like to move on and extend a personal thanks to all the Official Columnists who have made time to submit their stellar pieces to OWW in the past few months - Joe. L, Langdon Beck, Adam Heap, Avi Krebs, Jasper Sha, Colm Kearns, Jacob Kuhn, Matt Geddes, and Johnny LaRue. You constantly raise the bar here at OWW, and give other columnists something to aspire to. And speaking of such, there are a few people whom JT and I are looking at closely with a view to promoting them to Official Columnist - watch this space.
One last thing before I get off my soapbox. When you submit a column to us, please BE PATIENT. We do not always respond right away. Your column is filed by either JT or myself until we get around to checking it out. Then - and only then - will we reply to tell you whether your submission has been accepted or rejected. Bombarding us with emails that demand a response will serve only to annoy us - and to make you wait even longer. Rest assured, we respond to ALL submissions, whether they've been accepted or not, but due to the fact that we are both very busy people, we don't respond immediately. So please - exercise a little patience. We will get back to you - we promise!
I think that's the official business out of the way - and by "official business" I really mean "Kirsty's Bitch & Moan Session" - so let's move on to that fun stuff I mentioned earlier, shall we?
Fun for me has been continuing to interview some of the industry's biggest stars. Since my last Zest, I can now add Sting, Christopher Daniels, and Petey Williams to the notches on my belt. I've had a blast with each and every star I've talked to, but my favourite still has to be Brother Devon of Team 3-D - he was a class act all the way. Coming a very close second however, is Petey Williams, which I admit surprised me. I wasn't expecting to click with Mr. Canadian Destroyer all that well, but he turned out to be a real pleasure to chat with. If anyone is interested, you can check out all my interviews here.
Speaking of TNA stars, they and their product continue to climb in my estimation. I think they're a healthy alternative for anyone who prefers to see the story told inside the ring... Abyss and James Mitchell's intrusion into Christian's house aside. That said, the angle being worked between Abyss and Christian has been great. Their matches and the intensity of their rivalry has meant that overall, they've really nailed this storyline. I think Abyss was a great choice for Christian's first real feud as champion, and has certainly won him the fan's appreciation. Abyss too - often I think he's not given enough credit as a ring technician because he is, let's face it, a complete psychopath, but he's also a very sound performer. He and Christian have had excellent chemistry and I've thoroughly enjoyed their angle.
TNA outdid themselves with Lockdown. I think it has to be one of my favourite TNA pay-per-views, right up there with last year's Unbreakable. I'm no Scott Steiner fan, but he worked well as Jarrett's 2IC in the Lockdown main event. Sting's army was a fantastic mix of technical prowess and powerhouse steamrollers. I know Sting's had his detractors since coming on board with TNA, but I'm not one of them. I'm old enough to remember what a legend he was with WCW, and am fully appreciating his return. It seems to me that Sting's critics are mainly made up of people who aren't old enough to remember the WCW glory days, and it's a shame, because the man really is one of this business's all-time greatest legends.
Speaking of detractors, I'm also not one of John Cena's. The level of hate for this young man of late has absolutely astounded me. I was expecting a backlash - anyone whose popularity soars at the speed Cena's did is bound to experience some fall-out - but the sheer venom with which he's being treated staggers me. As far as I can see, Cena is a very hard-working champion, one with a lot of natural ability both in the ring and on the stick. Yes, his in-ring ability is fairly standard, but this is quite deliberate and not what he is truly capable of. It blows my mind that all the Cena-haters out there are not astute enough to see that Cena's been told to dumb down his move-set, to remain in keeping with his character. Those who remember Cena's debut in the Kurt Angle invitationals should be aware that he's capable of a great deal more, and therefore realise that he's limiting himself deliberately.
I am, however, one of the many fans who wish that Mark Henry would be flattened by an opponent - I don't care who, even the Great Khali would do! - and be "out with injury" for a change. I don't know how many people he's legitimately injured and how many are a work, and I don't care. The man irritates me intensely, continuously shoved in the main event with guys who he's simply not worthy of. Nor should my viewing time be taken up watching guys like Kurt Angle wasting his time with that no-talent behemoth. I couldn't even get excited seeing him live in New Zealand. He was in a triple threat with Undertaker and Angle, and all I could think was how much better the main event would have been if he wasn't in it. Taker and Angle - who proved at No Way Out just how amazing their chemistry is - worked their arses off in Wellington, and just as they got a nice rhythm going, Henry would charge in and destroy all they'd been working towards. When he was laid out on the ground right in front of me, I had to seriously restrain myself from reaching over the barrier and tying his bootlaces together.
I've always liked Triple H, but, like many people I suspect, I'm liking him even more lately. And although I'm a huge Motorhead fan, and although I absolutely LOVE the new "King of Kings" theme, I'm not biased at all... okay, maybe I am a little. No, seriously - Trips has, of late, been one of my favourite things on RAW. The build-up to Backlash between Trips, Cena and Edge was one of the best angles I've seen in a long time. They did not let us down at Backlash in the main event (though sadly, almost everyone else did) and I'm sorry to see the storyline conclude, although the D-X return being teased is making up for it.
Who would have thought that a SmackDown pay-per-view would kick RAW's arse? Backlash and Judgment Day proved that, I think that's been made abundantly clear. Even that travesty of a Taker/Khali match could not detract from one of the best WWE pay-per-views I've seen in a long time, and the crowning glory of course, was the Finlay/Benoit match. Holy 70's retro-wrestling Batman! Was anyone else on the edge of their seat? Though I'm sad that Benoit will be out of action for awhile, it's great that he's gone out with the memory of that superb match fresh in everyone's minds. Anyone with half a brain can also see he's burnt out - so although I'll miss him, I'm glad that he's finally able to take some time out.
With that, grasshoppers, I shall bid you adieu. I shall be cracking the whip over JT in order to get "J To The T" out of him for next month's editorial... mostly because I'm selfish and I love reading them. Get cracking JT!
Catch you all in July.
by Kirsty Quested
Tesco Nunez wrote:
Of Course we all like Triple H more than ever. He has always been great, but now he is easily recognizable as Raws diamond in the rough. Not to take anything away from Hunter, but he looks much better when compared to Chris Masters, Carlito, and John Cena.
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