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WRESTLING COLUMNS

The Good Old Days: Were They Really That Good"
July 15, 2006 by Stephen Mitchell


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I watched World of Sport every Saturday morning as a child. I just loved it. Every time Big Daddy hit the ring I would go bananas, I remember one Saturday morning as I was watching World of Sport my dad came in and changed the channel. As I cried to my mum he told me it was all fake and it really upset me. Even as a kid it turned me of wrestling and WOS was never the same for me again. It began to feel dull and boring and by the time it was finally cancelled I don't think I watched it anymore. By the time that I was about 9 or 10 SKY TV was really beginning to take off in the UK. My friends at school would talk about the wrestling and tell me all about Hogan, The Bushwhackers and The Warrior. It just sounded so good that I had to see what all the fuss was about. We never had SKY but one night I was out playing with a friend when his dad shouted him in to watch the wrestling and asked if I would like to come in too. As I sat on the floor of my friends living room I had no idea that for my first WWF experience I was watching 'The Grand Daddy of them All' WrestleMania VII and I just could not believe what I was seeing. The characters were so colourful, the costumes, music, the fans I had never seen anything like it and I was jumping up and down with excitement all the way through.

From then on my passion was wrestling until I got to high school and then it was my secret passion. I have watched wrestling ever since and have to admit that I have on many occasions looked back wistfully and said 'It isn't as good as the old days' until a couple of months back when I went to visit my parents. I was in the attic looking at my old things when I found a box with my wrestling stuff in it, along with my Hitman pink glasses and old WWF t-shirts and figures, and I found a box full of VHS tapes. I took them home with me and have since watched quite a few of them and let me tell you people we have never had it as good as we do now. I had many episodes of Superstars and Challenge and you never got anything apart from 4 jobber squash matches and tons of promo's shot in front of the blue screen with a digital image projected on it. Mostly all of the shows and matches were rubbish if I am going to be honest with you. Not only were they rubbish but they were also so predictable. You just knew Hogan was going to win, You just knew that Heenan would always get outsmarted by The Warrior and you could see a heel or face turn coming from about 5 miles away. (Tugboat to Typhoon, the Rockers on the barber shop etc) Not only that but there was no surprises to any big matches. Almost all matches finished with signature moves and if they didn't it would be because of a run in or a count out. Heck looking back on it now I can honestly say it sucks.

But in its defense it was aimed at kids and as a kid this was the product I wanted to see. I remember my first taste of 'Attitude' style wrestling was seeing Randy Savage tied up in the ropes as Jake the Snake had his cobra bite him. It was shocking to me and I wasn't ready for it. But as we all grew up the WWF had to as well we got the attitude era (I was in my late teens) and it was just fantastic at the time. They changed the product as their demographics interests were changing. We got Ladder matches, T&A and the comedy skit/promo.

The WWE was flying but yet again we were all getting older and the product needed to change to keep our interest. It has become more soap opera like and many complain about this but we all seem to forget that the storyline and promo's were a massive part in what made that attitude era successful. Who can forget such classic's as Mankind's this is your life to the Rock" That took 25 minutes of the show on RAW but when fans talk about it now they remember it fondly, there is no mention of how many wrestling matches they could have had in that time.

I guess my point is that when we look back on things we always remember them as better than they actually were. I remember hating school but sometimes I do catch myself saying 'the best days of my life.' Were they really" I doubt it.

Anyways this was my first column; feedback would be appreciated good or bad. If I have bored you half to death please let me know as well and I promise not to write another one.

by Stephen Mitchell ..


Sam Herrett (Age 12 - The UK) wrote:
Yes the old days was quite good after watching a few matches, It was obvious who was going to win but the quality of the matches were superb. Today the great matches are stuff like Rob Van Dam Vs Shelton Benjamin both good workers and good at doing high risk moves or Triple H and John Cena incredible matches or the " Rated R" Superstar Edge, His matches are brilliant to see how hes going to pull off a cheap victory and with the sexy Lita at ringside. Yes it may be more of a soap opera but its entertainment now not world wrestling federation. Enjoy WWE as you can from now on.
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