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WRESTLING COLUMNS

Classic Crap: Xtreme Pro Wrestling
August 1, 2005 by Joe L.


For the past several years, people have always asked what is the worst organization in this entire world? When you ask them, I guarantee that 90% of those people would say WCW and for that, it is worthy of being qualified as a proper answer for its nonsensical storylines, horrendous booking, under-utilizations of wrestlers and a polluted backstage morale doomed this company from the beginning. Today, a lot of people would say WWE because their ideas, storylines, feuds and matches are either supremely repetitive, stale and monotonous or tasteless and morally disgraceful. But let's be positive. At least when WCW was dying, they had a crop of great talent, the cruiserweights and Ric Flair. And while WWE can become a stinky product, at least it still provides some good matches, a logic storyline and some surprises that are actually surprising.

No, the worst organization in this entire world in my views has, was and always will be pressed upon Xtreme Pro Wrestling, the wrestling equivalent of toxic waste. There is nothing, and I mean NOTHING, that can be said positive about this "company", other than the fact that it is now officially dead and buried for good. When it existed, it was a rotten, impotent and castrated pile of dog feces that even a fly wouldn't eat. Zero work rate, zero talent, zero logic, zero originality and zero product drops XPW further down the belt (literally).

In the words of Roger Ebert:

"This company doesn't scrape the bottom of the barrel. This company isn't the bottom of the barrel. This company isn't below the bottom of the barrel. This company doesn't deserve to be mentioned in the same sentence with barrels."

Replace barrels with the wrestling industry and it's quite obvious XPW as a wrestling company would work as well as Hulk Hogan being an authentic movie actor, which means that it doesn't.

Of course, some "intelligent" people would say that XPW was the ECW of the Millennium. First off, let me give geniuses some advice. XPW was never ECW nor would it ever be. It can't even match some of the worst of ECW. And it should be note that the same people that said that haven't even watched an ECW tape yet so their argument of XPW being better than ECW is simply unbelievable (As if to say NOT-BELIEVABLE).

First off, ECW was about diversity, attitude, passion, respect, the deep and substantial content in the wrestling ring, on the mic and with the fans and an environment that was so sleazy and dirty yet consisting of accolades that it ended up gaining a cult following and nearly went public as a national promotion. ECW led to many imitators and many ideas that were copyrighted and utilized in other big promotions, specifically WWF, to up each other further during the MONDAY NIGHT WARS and it became a precursor for many stars that used it as a stepping stone to achieve mainstream success in the future like Chris Benoit, Eddie Guerrero, Chris Jericho, the Dudley Boyz, Raven, The Flock and the Impact Players. If anything, ECW takes 85% of the credit for the birth of the WWF Attitude Era and for its supreme victory over WCW.

XPW, on the other hand, is basically ECW minus all the terms and sentences that I have written after the first word of the paragraph above. If I was given a chose on what to nickname the word "second-rate", then XPW would be my first obligated chose. Throughout my years as a wrestling fan, I had never seen such a more pathetic wrestling company do anything and attempt to go further just to get notice and then have all that bite them back in the ass than Rob Black's failed experiment. To call it a promotion is an insult to all the other companies like ROH that had better workers, fresher concepts and actually take this industry very, very seriously. To say that it was a #2 company before its death is ridiculous since 1.) Their product was never marketable, let alone noticeable to any wrestling fans to begin with and 2.) It became a failure before it even started. And then for them to have the gall to try to gain attention by making fools out of themselves in an ECW pay-per-view in Los Angeles and then make a story about it defies logic, sense and intelligence as if anyone even knows these guys or even gives a flaming f**k about it.

Incompetence does not even describe this laughable excuse of a wrestling promotion. First off, there's the announcing. After watching an atrocious XPW video tape called "Go Funk Yourself", I thought for a second that I lost my hearing due to some of the worst commentary I had ever heard. The announcers of XPW, Kris Kross and Larry Rivera would make the teaming of Mark Madden and Tony Schiavone sound like true professionals. These morons don't know wrestling from oral sex and they instead say "bullsh*t" about how Rob Black is the Donald Trump of professional wrestling when he doesn't even have half the paycheck as Vince Russo. Even worse is Kris Kross, who tries to talk like he's Joey Styles and makes a constant mockery of him by screaming like a crack junkie drinking helium. Kris, you're not Joey Styles. You're not even Mark Madden. That's how bad you truly are. Speaking of Joey Styles, he sacrificed his dignity to do announcing after replacing Kris and left a month later. Gee, I wonder why?

Then there's the wrestling. It's not substandard...it's WAY below substandard. We're dealing with wrestlers that would make the performers in Heroes of Wrestling or the kids in Backyard Wrestling look like authentic workers. These so-called professional athletes can't even get in the ring without tripping and falling on their asses. If you don't believe me, watch the opening of the cruddy Genocide DVD where a wrestler gets in the ring and trips. They blow simple moves, like an Irish whip and miss 85% of their spots on camera. Most of the wrestlers don't know how to "wrestle" period...

For example, Pogo the Clown. This talentless, overweight Neanderthal’s only offensive move is a clothesline; the others are licking a shovel and yak on the camera. JBL might've had a killer clothesline as a threatening move but at least he had other offensive grapples that were wrestling moves. Following Pogo on the top of crappy wrestler list are the WestSiders, idiotic Gangsta wannabes that if they were seen by New Jack, would get their heads cut off and burned in the oven. For those asking, the Gangstas consisted of New Jack and Mustafa and they redefined extremely violent brawls that were cringing and at the same time satisfying back when ECW existed. These idiots from XPW would rehash the exact same brawl that we have seen over and over and over again as if they thought it was something special. And finally Vic Grimes, a bloated has-been that thinks he's like the new Mick Foley. The difference is evident: Foley can brawl, wrestle and entertain. Vic CAN'T brawl, CAN'T wrestle and CAN'T entertain.

Probably the worst aspect of XPW is their attempts to be like ECW. They even go far as copyrighting the Eastern company's gimmicks, angles and characters while signing a bunch of rejects that mean nothing in this business. Because they were desperate to gain attention, they decided to take it upon themselves to "invade" ECW Heatwave 2000 causing problems during the Tommy Dreamer-Justin Credible main event. Their invasion is an embarrassing display of arrogance and was actually a rehash of the semi-famous ECW Invasion back at WWF In Your House: Mind Games. Of course, XPW wrestlers got their asses kicked by ECW wrestlers but that wouldn't be the end of it.

There was no other point to open their company other than the defame a man whose creations and original attitude helped define the wrestling industry and then cement themselves as the true hardcore company in the world. After ECW died, XPW went as far as moving to Philadelphia, ECW's former stopping ground, thus trying to make a point that would never make sense. Their intentions of trying to revitalize the best AND worst of ECW were simply pathetic, as greatly evident by gimmicks which were used on wrestlers that were copied straight off of Paul Heyman's little promotion, not to mention some ideas that came straight out of the other big companies like WWF and most specifically WCW. To illustrate my point, here is the list of XPW's "original" wrestlers:

WestSiders: Imbeciles with the I.Q. of a solid brick whose attempts to become the Gangstas would leave any ECW fan in stitches, but not in a physical matter. If their "wrestling" was a sore sight in the eyes, then their shoot promos were nauseating to the senses.

Dynamite D: Total pansy that makes a mockery of Steve Corino's old-school gimmick and rips off Mick Foley's anti-hardcore character. This guy wants us to believe that he prefers wrestling over hardcore, which is funny because he doesn't know how to wrestle period.

Johnny Webb: Lives in a trailer trash and likes to drink beer. Whoop-de-doo, so does the Sandman and Steve Austin.

Mexico's Most Wanted: More like Mexico's Most Retarded. Featuring a trio of Halloween, Damien 666 and some ugly skank named Victoria, these Team Extreme wannabes are sphincters of lucha libre, primarily because they're lucha libre wrestlers minus the actual lucha libre style. These morons would be best suitable to mowing lawns than wrestling in the square circle.

Kid Kaos: First, a blatant ass-copyright of Rey Mysterio's good guy character and then settled with a gimmick that directly rips-off Rob Van Dam's undefeated PPV streak when he was an ECW Television Champion. For all his heeldom, Kaos is nothing but a glorified stuntman who's as scary as Crash Holly.

Damien Steel: XPW's Shane Douglas, subtracting the mic skills, intensity, in-ring ability and attitude that would lead a company to mainstream success. Oh, and his finisher is a swinging neckbreaker. Enough said.

Lizzy Borden Scantily-clad porno actress and the worst Francine impersonation in the history of pro wrestling.

Kristy Mist: See above, minus Francine and inserting Beulah McGuilicuty.

Supreme: If Damien Steel represented the worst of Shane Douglas, then Supreme represents the worst of Tommy Dreamer. While Dreamer was still performing innovative displays of brutality against his opponents with and without weapons, this brainless lunkhead had to resort to thumbtacks, plastic glass and getting set on "fire" to make himself look like a serious threat. Subtract all that and Supreme would look like a test tube baby on Viagra.

Jake Lawless: More like Fake Talentless. Imagine a guy that looks like Kevin Nash and makes the actual Big Lazy seem competent. Then you would get the picture here.

The Messiah: One of the most skilful brawlers that still exist in this business is succumb to a lousy religious gimmick that would make Raven throw up all over the floor. Thankfully, the Messiah left this sewer and had better success at Combat Zone Wrestling.

Angel: A homosexual wearing pink pants portrayed as a threatening main eventer? What's next? Tickle Me Elmo portrayed as a tag team's ventriloquist's dummy?

GQ Money: The only thing more annoying than hearing Bill Alfonso whistle in every ECW arena is seeing a Bill Alfonso wannabe wear hooligan costumes and expect all of us to take him seriously or care.

The Black Army and The Enterprise: Rob Black attempted to revitalize the ill-fated New Blood v. Millionaires' Club and the Gang Wars by inserting several worthless wrestlers and no-talent employees into two stables that no one, other than XPW, actually gave a crap about.

Carlito Montana: If trying to create another Kevin Nash wasn't enough, XPW attempted a resurrection of Razor Ramon on a guy that they probably picked off the streets and tried to make him a badass by having him insult Mexicans. And people thought the anti-U.S. foreign gimmick in the WWE was ridiculous?

It makes me sick that any ECW wrestler like Shane Douglas, Axl Rotten, New Jack, Sabu, Chris Hamrick, John Kronus (who would make Tank Abbott look like Ricky Steamboat), The Sandman, Psicosis, Aldo Montoya, Juventud Guerrera, Big Dick Dudley and even Chris Candido would volunteer to work with a company that tried to make complete asses out of the same organization that made their careers. I get even more appalled over the fact that Shane Douglas, who was once one of the precursors and main leaders of Extreme Championship Wrestling, would end up being a leader for XPW, the same company that hated ECW with jealousy and ignorance. And for Axl Rotten to go on the mic and say and I quote from Baptized in Blood I

"I prefer working for this company, not with those extreme pussies like Tommy Dreamer"

....shows you the total arrogance and utter stupidity that this crappy company (I refuse to call it a promotion) contains. Besides that, what does going to XPW accomplish for an ECW wrestler? If anything, it makes that person look like a loser who stupidly works there because he doesn't have a job when he can just go to other indy promotions and have a much better reputation. To call it career suicide would be a drastic understatement. Working for XPW would tarnish your name forever.

XPW's futile presentation of being their own ECW was as successful as New Coke. Every "innovative" character, idea, angle and match were nothing but parodies of the original concepts that made ECW a hot commodity during the Monday Night Wars. Every wrestler attempted to degrade Paul Heyman's promotion by not only copying gimmicks but performing matches, which were nothing but a bunch of horrible hardcore bouts that had no flow or any use of wrestling. Even worse, there was no lucha libre, no technical wrestling, no standard wrestling, the three key factors that gave ECW a huge cult following and recognition. And if there was, it would be so bad that it would make purists defecate intestines out of their a**holes. People who think WWE and WCW sucked at garbage wrestling should have second thoughts when watching an XPW match, if you can actually call it a match.

The term "garbage" would've also definitely been used to describe XPW's so-called King of the Deathmatch tournaments. These half-assed monstrosities are a total disgrace to all the intense, violent deathmatches that took place in Japan and the horrifying bloodbaths between Terry Funk and Mick Foley. Since the beginning, these lame-ass tournaments offered nothing but a bunch of horrible wrestling, even more horrendous brawling and some of the greatest display of inept booking in wrestling today. I watched the XPW tournament in Baptized in Blood II and I could never believe that any of these hardcore matches in this match could turn out be less enthusiastic and more business-exposing than the time when Al Snow was wrestling himself on RAW 1999. And for everyone to say that it's violent, I defy you to watch the Japan classic between Funk and Foley where both men literally massacred each other with explosions, barb-wire, glass and watch a turdburger between Angel and Supreme, in which Supreme and Angel blew more spots than Sabu and tell me that the XPW tournaments were more hardcore than Mick Foley's legendary deathmatches in Japan. Bleh. Terry Funk was around 50 at that time and he wrestled and worked much better than either Supreme or Angel or everyone in the XPW roster. Terry Funk was a crazy bastard that loved wrestling and would destroy his own body for the sake of entertaining the fans. Supreme used the tournament to disguise his lack of wrestling skills and did nothing that was as dedicated or as respectful to the business than the Funkster. Sure, Terry Funk went to XPW once but he left immediately afterwards unscathed while everyone in the company is broke, living in their shelters and working as salesmen in order to gain some money. And for that, Terry can be forgiven like the Messiah.

And if the wrestling wasn't bad, then there's the storylines. If you've seen all the bad angles in WWF and WCW, you've seen 'em all but here XPW takes these universally despised angles and somehow manages to make them even worse and more laughably ridiculous.

Case in point, Supreme getting set on fire. A complete reference one of the worst moments in WCW when "Sting" was set on the fire during his feud with Vampiro, the fire was nothing but a blatant joke. The fire was completely weak yet Supreme sold it like he was dying of a heart attack. XPW marks called it shocking; I call it stupid and business exposing.

Another wonderful display of ripping off the wrong material took place at Baptized in Blood II, in the aftermath of the moronic King of the Deathmatch tournament won by Vic Grimes. Rob Black, who was probably watching WCW, had the gall to book a spinoff of the "Fingerpoke of Doom" angle when Grimes was killed with a finger by Messiah and turned heel. Rob Black probably loved ripping off so much crap from WCW that at Genocide 2002, he even copyrighted the lousy Wargames bout from Fall Brawl'98 and combined it with the Junkyard Hardcore Invitational Battle Royal, to turn it into one large heap of cow dung that was dreadfully booked, mindlessly sluggish and senseless in terms of quality in the ring and the story. Before that, the high level of stupidity was already achieved during a coin toss when Veronica Caine, a woman with the personality of a mannequin, flashed in front of Kris Crock and declared that her team won the coin toss. Who said Rob Black wasn't a genius?

But probably the stupidest angle I had ever seen throughout the wretched company was at the third Baptized in Blood when during the horrible finals between Supreme and Angel, ECW sell-out and then XPW Heavyweight Champion Shane Douglas took a tranquilizer gun and shot Angel...who was 20-30 feet above on a scaffold. Never mind the fact that Shane was on the ground when he fired a tranquilizer at Angel, who was 20-30 feet above him but the fact that it took place in an outdoor arena at night, which would technically make it impossible for Shane to see through the cross-aim would make "Heaven's Gate" seem easy to understand.

And then there's the production values...what else could I say? These arenas look smaller than my dad's apartment and contains between 50-190 fans in buildings that are supposed to hold the capacity of over 8,000. I instantly chuckle when Rivera calls Rob Black the Donald Trump of professional wrestling when there's only about 100 fans in the front and the rest of rows are extremely empty. That's right, Rob Black is so rich and recognizable to everyone in the world that he manages to attract a staggering 2% of the people in buildings that look like abandoned warehouses ready to be demolished. Give me a break. ECW attracted 75 times the amount of fans of all XPW attendances combined, primarily because it was a much better promotion that didn't have crappy wrestling or crappy bookers.

If ECW was an admirable adult consisting of maturity, knowledge and respect, then XPW was like a brainless, 12-year old who would whine, bitch and do anything to gain attention from others. Never had comparisons between two opposing forces been so drastically few or less than nothing. ECW was a hometown wrestling promotion that helped introduce wrestling fans a breed of newer talent. XPW was an ECW wannabe company that failed on every level. Even without copyrighting ECW, XPW was expendable as a wrestling company: a waste of money, brain-dead bookers who didn't know how to book, production values that stunk of road kill and some of the worst wrestling you will ever (or never) see on national television. What was thought to be an unexceptional and supremely boring wrestling company ended up became a pathetic cesspool akin of having brainless sharks and sewer water that was as tolerable as being hit in the head with a hammer. Yet how it managed to survive for three more years is mind-boggling to say the least.

So now XPW is dead and buried and urinated all over by some degenerate in a cemetery. Let this be a lesson to any promoter out there who fundamentally believes that copyrighting other company's material and then use it to make yourself look better or attack other promotions would lead to mainstream success. It does not. The WWF Attitude Era is excluded since inspirations from ECW's extreme attitude led to the promotion beating WCW in the ratings war. WCW tried to become like a new WWF by hiring Vince Russo and it blew up right in their faces. FMW tried to utilize the sports-entertainment factor and adult material that WWF was using and it, along with other Japanese independent organizations not getting their pay, sent them hurling into bankruptcy. WWF's entrance to football via XFL was a failure and cost the company a lot of money.

In the end, sometimes the phrase "art imitates life" is best left in the analogy books.

by Joe L. --- [View Joe L's Column Index]..


Lee wrote:
I totally agree with most of this article, and i believe you have researched this to the full of your potential, but i would like to bring some points forward.

Mexico's Most Wanted worked in WCW before and after their stint in XPW, and i believe that Halloween was very talented. Damien 666 was a spot monkey if i remember correctly. But sometimes when you put a talented wrestler against an untalented wrestler, then you cant always make others look good. It's like Steve Austin, couldn't wrestle towards the end of his career, but brawled well, even he couldn't make Snitsky look good if you ask me.

Messiah, is and will be a legend in the industry just for his recovery from an injury which could of ended his career, and i am very happy with the way you portrayed him in this article.

However i do have one big problem with the Damien Steele comment. I am a huge fan of Damien Steele and have family ties to the man. If what you said was correct, why would ECW, WCW and WWF be interested in signing him? But then XPW tried to play the whole ECW/RVD thing with him saying that he wouldn't leave XPW. However he did, he signed a development deal with WWF. He worked in UPW for a couple of months, then went to Puerto Rico. However when he returned his skills had declined instead of improved and he was released.

But all in all a great article, everyone has disagreements correct? But XPW should be banned from being mentioned in the world of wrestling.
Wesley Martinez wrote:
Great column. And I agree with your views 100%. XPW was the epitome of crap; it was nowhere near as good as ECW, and it never could have been. Now we just need to wait for Combat Zone to die and we'll have another shit-quality copycat we don't have to worry about.
Matt Swartz wrote:
Great article Joe, my only complaint is that you actually made me think about XPW again, and this after lunch no less. If I puke like I think I am going to I will have to hunt you down. But seriously, I think you summarized pretty nicely the loathing and disgust that we all feel for XPW. I think you were too hard on "respectable" stars who put on matches there, though. Independent wrestling does not offer a consistent pay check for the athletes, and bills do come every month. Furthermore, a sleaze like Mr. Black doesn't seem to be the type to be above throwing in some drugs or other pleasures to sweeten the deal. This is only speculation of course, but we are talking about the man who makes (used to make? hopefully) america's most disturbing porn and who allegedly once sent a hit man to remove some of his ex-employee's fingers. The fact that you didnt touch on these details is understandable (isn't the wrestling bad enough? of course it is!), but all in all, your article might be the best thing ever to result from xpw's reign of crap.
Jason "Xtremefalls" Simmons wrote:
Now that was a great column Joe i really liked it. Well written funny, and really gave respect to people like Messiah and ECW.
Jonathan Barber wrote:
Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. If you would like to read another perspective on XPW, please keep focused to my "History of XPW: Bleeding Was Only Half the Job" retrospective here at OnlineWorldofWrestling.com, featuring comments from Shane Douglas, Jerry Lynn, Shark Boy, Chris Hamrick, Vic Grimes, Kevin Kleinrock, Larry Rivera, Supreme, Kaos, Homeless Jimmy, Dynamite D, GQ Money, Steve Rizzono, Pogo the Clown, and so many more.

Read the dirt that people don't want you to know about XPW...and the dirt that XPW didn't want to ever be leaked out! From the plans to go international in Japan, The Messiah's last weeks with the company and his subsequent attack, and the HeatWave 2000 riot to the Philly invasion, the TRUTH about drugs and sexual favors in the XPW locker room, and the real-life tragedies of Damien Steele and Steve Rizzono (along with so much more), this is XPW as you have NEVER, EVER SEEN IT BEFORE. For more information, please stay tuned to OnlineWorldofWrestling.com or contact Piratez4v3go2@aol.com .

What happened in the XPW lockerroom stays in the XPW locker room...UNTIL NOW!!!
XPWsucks (Michael Minchington) wrote:
All I can say is:Bravo! Joe, I totally agree with your column. What a pathetic debacle that XP thing was. I leave off the "W", because the "W" stands for Wrestling, and as you rightly pointed out, most of the XP roster would'nt know how to wrestle if their sad, pathetic lives depended on it.Shame on Shane Douglas, Terry Funk and others for getting involved.Big Ups to the Messiah for coming back and hammering the nail in the coffin.Oh, and his sign sums up my feelings to that guy perfectly. 'Nuff said.
Marvinsprngvlly wrote:
I think Joe's column on XPW was well researched and honest. Take away The Messiah and the wrestlers from ECW and imagine XPW. You would barf out your liver just by thinking about it. Enough said.
wrote:

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If your email is intelligently written, they will be posted underneath this messege..
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