Ghastly Gimmicks: The World’s Largest Love Machine

Viscera, Big Daddy V, world's largest love machine, Lilian Garcia, WWE, wwf, pajamas

The Great Romances of the 20th Century

Nelson Frazier, better known has Viscera, was never the most fortunate guy when it came to gimmicks. King Mabel brought very little to the table, and the “generic oversized thug” role he filled for most of his career wasn’t exactly groundbreaking. Still, one of his characters stands head and shoulders above the rest in terms of being worthy of embarrassment – The silk-pajama-wearing World’s Largest Love Machine.

This ghastly gimmick began in 2005 when Trish Stratus enlisted Viscera’s help to take out Kane, who at the time was “married” to Trish’s arch-nemesis Lita. Not one to offer his services for free, Big Vis forced himself upon Trish, straight dogging her in a backstage segment before showing up to a “business dinner” with a supply of XL condoms. When Vis failed to eliminate Kane from the picture at Backlash ’05, Stratus put an end to their partnership, and Big Daddy V put her on the shelf with a big splash for her troubles. This, of course, turned Viscera into a babyface (wrestling!).

With Trish out of the picture, Vis turned his attention to ring announcer Lilian Garcia. Week in and week out, he’d attempt to seduce her, and although his advances were unwelcomed at first, Garcia eventually came around. The couple shared a number of in-ring kisses (one featuring nachos), and eventually, Lilian thought it was time to take things to the next level. At Vengeance ’05, Garcia proposed to the World’s Largest Love Machine in the middle of the ring. Before he could accept, however, The Godfather and his Ho Train made their way to the ring to remind Big Vis of everything he’d be leaving behind should he chose to take himself off the market. Unable to resist the hos, Viscera left a devastated Lilian Garcia in shambles. Naturally, he’d begin pairing up with fellow ladies man Val Venis as part of a tag team that was aptly named V-Squared. During this time, he began using a signature maneuver called the Viscagra, with which he’d literally dry hump opponents into the canvas.

A year later, Vis attempted to reconcile with Lilian, who was less than enthused to give him another chance. He and Charlie Haas competed for her affection for a short while, but when she said that she only liked them both as friends, things took a dark turn. Viscera responded to being put into the friend-zone by Samoan Dropping Garcia, after which he and Haas shared a good laugh. You can’t make this stuff up. Most of the World’s Largest Love Machine’s “highlights” are featured in the short tribute video below, inexplicably (but oddly appropriately?) set to Bobby Pickett’s “The Monster Mash.”

What If: WWE buys TNA

whatifwwebuystna3At, we’ve asked the question ‘What If‘ 18 times. Sometimes we’ve re-written wrestling history, other times we’ve made predictions for the future and sometimes we do a hybrid of both. Today’s edition is interesting because of every What If we’ve ever pondered, this one is imminent. TNA will be sold this week. It seemed like the Orlando based company would change hands last week as rumors of bankruptcy flooded the internet, but a mystery investor infused enough cash to make Bound for Glory happen. Because this is wrestling, the list of mystery investors (and potential buyers) is limited only by your imagination.

Anyone with money and/or an interest in pro wrestling has been discussed among fans. Was it Hulk Hogan with all that sweet Gawker cash? Did Broken Matt Hardy take out a second mortgage on his sprawling North Carolina compound? Is WWE Hall of Famer Donald Trump going to Make TNA Great Again? With no real details surfacing regarding the mystery third party, you can’t rule anyone out just yet. So when TNA is finally sold, who is most likely to end up owning it? The safe bet remains Billy Corgan but it’s been reported by Forbes that the WWE remains a very real possibility in some capacity. So this week we ask, What if WWE buys TNA? Continue reading

Ghastly Gimmicks: That 70’s Guy

Mike Awesome, that 70s guy, ace, wwe, ecw, wrestler, career killer, fat chick thriller

Hello Wisconsin!

In the spring of 2000, the reigning ECW Champion made a surprise debut in WCW on the April 10 edition of Monday Nitro. He was a big man, standing 6’6″ and tipping the scales at nearly 300 lbs, but he was as quick and as agile as a cat. He was buzzy, debuting for a rival promotion while still carrying Extreme Championship Wrestling’s top prize. Perhaps most importantly, he was mean, having left a path of destruction in his wake at every stop he made during his career. His name was Mike Awesome, and he was a can’t miss superstar who missed and missed hard.

Things started all right for Awesome in WCW as the big man took on a “career killer” gimmick shortly after his debut, the result of throwing Kanyon off the top of a cage and putting him out of action for a while. It didn’t take long, however, for things to take a turn for the worse. A couple of months into his tenure with the Georgia-based promotion, Awesome watched as things went to hell at Bash at the Beach 2000. In an infamous kayfabe-shattering moment, Jeff Jarrett laid down in the middle of the ring and allowed Hulk Hogan to pin him. The circumstances surrounding the incident are still disputed today, but that’s a story for another time. The reason it bears mentioning now is that Mike Awesome was a relative of Hulk Hogan’s through marriage, and after Hogan left the company on such bad terms, it’s widely believed that Vince Russo took his aggressions out on Awesome, saddling him with gimmicks that were failures by design. Continue reading

What If: Corey Graves Didn’t Have to Retire


When we think of superstars whose careers ended too early, two names immediately spring to mind: Edge and Daniel Bryan. After more than 10 years in the ring, numberous world championships and multiple high profile Wrestlemania matches, long term injuries caught up to both men. Their retirements were shocking and emotional for everyone, especially in an industry where guys like Flair, Sting and Hogan wrestled well into their 50s. Edge and Bryan still had star power, but they did what was best (and right) for their futures. Edge was inducted into the Hall of Fame less than a year after his shocking retirement. Daniel Bryan will join him whenever Daniel Bryan chooses to. Neither end was ideal, but we can take comfort in knowing that both men lived their dream, their future is much brighter having retiring and we got the chance to take the wild ride with them.

In a way, those were the best possible worst scenarios. Some guys don’t know when to call it quits. Some guys don’t have what it takes to make it that far. Or in the case of Corey Graves, some guys get so close, then have it all ripped away. That brings us to this week’s What If…

What If Corey Graves didn’t have to retire? Continue reading

Full Match Friday: Johnny Gargano vs Candice LaRae

It’s no secret that we here at are big fans of the Cruiserweight Classic. Hell, we’re already eagerly looking forward to next year’s edition. While TJ Perkins took home the trophy this time around, when the tournament kicked off, my pick to win the thing was “The Whole Shebang” Johnny Gargano. I’d seen Gargano wrestle years earlier at the old ECW Arena, and was excited when he debuted on NXT and was subsequently announced for the CWC. He may have fallen short of victory, but he certainly did not disappoint, delivering two excellent matches before he was eliminated. There are good times ahead for Johnny Wrestling.

Yesterday, we profiled one of the absolute best woman wrestlers in the world today, Candice LaRae. She has squared off with some of the top female performers of this era, but something that sets her apart is her ability to keep up with the men during intergender matches. She is inarguably a show-stealer. She’s also the new bride of Gargano, as the couple was just wed a week ago today.

In today’s match from Absolute Intense Wrestling’s September 2014 WrestleRanger event, these newlyweds go to war with one another, and they pull out all the stops. With so many high spots and false finishes, this one has such a big match feel to it that it could be a pay-per-view main event. So take a timeout from your Friday to get your indy wrestling fix with Johnny & Candice – you’ll be happy that you did. Just don’t hold me responsible for the commentary.

Billy Corgan aims to save TNA


In 1996, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony released their hit song and ground breaking music video ‘Tha Crossroads’. Having just revisited it for the first time in 20 years, it’s over the top, a little morbid and predictably dated. But for whatever reason, it resonated hard with 10 year old me. When it came on MTV or The Box, I was captivated with the special effects and unique rhythm. So you can imagine my outrage and anger when MTV’s Video Music Awards rolled around and Smashing Pumpkins won almost every award for their ‘Tonight, Tonight’ video. 10 year old me hated Billy Corgan.

Around the same time as the 1996 VMAs, I began to discover pro wrestling. This wasn’t the fake yellow and red Hulkamania crap that I was too cool for in my pre-teen years. No, this new wrestling. It was the nWo and Hollywood Hogan. It was crazy guys like Mankind or cool guys like Shawn Michaels. It was ECW. I was hooked on all 3 but it was ECW that meant the most t0 me as they were my hometown promotion. So imagine my excitement when huge rockstar Billy Corgan showed up to play an original song about ECW. 14 year old me loved Billy Corgan. Continue reading

Profilin’: Candice LeRae

Candice LeRae, wrestling, disney, johnny gargano, joey ryan, pwg, pro wrestling guerrilla, women's wrestlingHailing from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, the 5’2″ Candice LaRae may look like an unassuming “diva,” but don’t be fooled by her cuteness. LaRae was changing the course of women’s wrestling years before the “revolution” that debuted on Monday nights last summer.

Wrestling professionally since 2002, Candice LaRae’s dance card is filled with the names of this generation’s top female performers – she’s wrestled the likes of current NXT trainer Sara Del Rey, Cheerleader Melissa, Awesome Kong, and Kimber Lee, among others. Beyond that, LaRae has demonstrated time and time again that she can hang with the boys, having squared off with guys like Eddie Kingston, Claudio Castagnoli (now Cesaro), Chuck Taylor, and Necro Butcher. She’s done tours in SHIMMER & Shine, Chikara, Ring of Honor, Combat Zone Wrestling, Insanity Pro – the list goes on. Basically, there is no challenge too great for this Canadian Goddess. When opponents hear her arrival signaled by The Darkness’ “I Believe in a Thing Called Love” over the arena’s PA system, they’d best have brought their A-game.

LaRae’s arsenal of moves is downright insane. From her signature Balls-Plex (more on that later) to her smash mouth high-flying, there’s very little that Candice LaRae doesn’t do. After tiring her opponents with DDTs and suicide dives, LaRae will often bust out a Canadian Destroyer or a springboard reverse rana that will leave the crowd in awe. Utilizing a collection of moonsaults that would make Lita jealous, LaRae also manages to maintain an impressive technical prowess, never hesitant to tie an opponent up in an octopus hold. With her in-ring ability being what it is, it should come as no surprise that she was an immediate fan-favorite upon her 2006 debut in Pro Wrestling Guerrilla. Continue reading