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Thread: It's True, It's True: Epic Rivalry Part 1

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    @TRSOTP @MazzaLOP Mazza's Avatar
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    It's True, It's True: Epic Rivalry Part 1

    ‘Sup, CF? Now I am sure there is some secret pool out there on whether I’d actually stick this series out past the first part and even I am surprised to see that I am back. I mean, I’m no SkitZ or anything, but I do have a history of flaking out on a column series. Anyone remember Carbon-Praseodymium? It was a series I got a couple of columns into where I would take a wrestler and look at their chemistry with their peers and what it could tell us about their style. It was actually a fun little experiment that I’d like to pick up again down the line (although admittedly probably won’t). I had quite a few columns planned out in my head. Kurt Angle wasn’t on that list however. I think the main reason for that is that he seemed to have good chemistry with everyone. I seriously can’t think of a bad Angle match. I am sure there are a couple here and there but they will be few and far between. Kurt’s adaptability meant there was never much in the way of awkward exchanges as he seemed to be able to jump into people’s comfort zone and welcome others to his. That doesn’t mean to say that the Olympian doesn’t have a nemesis who stands out from the rest however, and that gives us the subject of today’s column.




    If you head over to the WWE network and check out their Rivalries series, you won’t find Kurt Angle. You won’t see him involved in a collection like the Miz vs Dolph Ziggler one either. One reason would be that they probably didn’t want to promote him until recently. Now there is a possibility of one popping up now he’s back home and going into the Hall of Fame. It won’t be the one that needs to go up however. When it comes to the greatest rivalries in WWE history, you will see lots of pairings touted. Bret Hart vs Shawn Michaels. Mick Foley vs Triple H. The Rock vs Steve Austin. John Cena vs Randy Orton (who’s excited?). There are plenty more too which helped define a generation or era in terms of epic feuds and/or epic matches. When you are looking for the best of both world however one rivalry that cannot be omitted from the conversation is Kurt Angle vs Chris Benoit.

    Their paths to the WWE were very different. Kurt was the world class amateur who conquered that world before heading to the pros. After a year or so learning the ropes, he hit the ground running at the end of 1999. Benoit was pro-wrestling through and through, coming up through the famous Hart Dungeon and perfecting his art around the world. He would rise through the ranks at WCW thanks to his fantastic in-ring ability but his frustrations with the political scene would see him jump ship in January 2000, despite being given a world title run. When the Crippler and his Radicalz buddies arrived on the scene, the Olympian was really starting to come into his own. Both were being positioned very quickly to rise through the ranks. Both could throw one hell of a suplex. From the get go it would be safe to say that they were on a collision course, despite the fact they were both working on the heel side of the spectrum. Still, this was the Attitude Era and there would be no shortage of bad guys getting up in each other’s business.

    Last week I talked about the trio of stars who would really be key in the style change as the Attitude Era became Ruthless Aggression. Chris Jericho was the third man and he would be the babyface glue that would first bring Benoit and Angle together. Of course they would wrestle the two-fall triple threat match at WrestleMania that year and it was during that build where they first crossed paths in a one-on-one encounter on SmackDown. There wasn’t a huge amount to write home about in that one. Y2J would be at the announce booth and would interfere after about 3 minutes to gift first blood to Kurt via disqualification. Short but sweet would become the theme of their early work together. The Canadian would avenge losing round one by taking Angle’s Intercontinental title at Mania after pinning Jericho. The presence of the future sexy pinata wouldn’t give us a great view of the early chemistry the duo would bring to the table but there would be a one-on-one rematch on SmackDown a couple of weeks later. Once again it would only go 3 minutes. Once again in would end in a disqualification (Big Show would push The Crippler off the top rope before going after Kurt). This time however we’d get a little glimpse into the future and just how good the chemistry was. They maximised their minutes in a balls to the wall battle of suplexes, throws and chops.

    Next stop would be on PPV once more, but not really because it’s one of those English PPVs that don’t really count. What was interesting about their battle in London at Insurrextion was that it was performed in more of what was the WWE main event style at the time. It was a brawl with the focus being on a severely messed up eye that Benoit had received at the hands of Jericho. Angle would take advantage of this to pick up the first pinfall victory of the rivalry. I make note of the style here as the main event scene is where they’d both be heading after making good strong starts to their WWE careers. They would have one last hurrah together as Kurt tried once again to win back his IC belt (Jericho had briefly won it at the time of Insurrextion). Once again we’d see the short SmackDown disqualification (thanks to Hardcore Holly of all people) with both men back to wrestling in the style they would be most comfortable in. Their early days as opponents didn’t see them as huge rivals but was starting to show off the amazing chemistry that would be on display for all to see over and over again a year down the line.

    We aren’t quite ready to fast-forward to 2001 just yet however. You can’t talk about the Angle-Benoit rivalry without going into their work as a team. Now when we think about this duo together, our minds automatically go to that amazing couple of months when SmackDown established their own tag belts during the first brand split (a far cry from the terrible tag scene the blue brand have created so far this time). The fact is though that just a couple of months after they put their struggles over the IC belt behind them, they would find themselves wrestling as a team. It was inevitable really. They were both heels on the rise and the “enemy of my enemy is my friend” type situation was always on the cards. The loose union would be brought together by Shane McMahon and would also include the freshly turned Big Show (when isn’t he, right?). They would wrestle their first match as a tag team on Raw in late July against Kane and The Rock. This would be a fun encounter but had more of a feel of two concurrent singles matches, as was often the case in the era. The next week things would have a more traditional feel as they took on the Dudley Boys. Here you would get an early glimpse that the chemistry they had wasn’t unique to them being opponents as we’d see good teamwork and a win thanks to interference from Shane and Show.

    The next time they would tag together they would be the two biggest active heels on the roster. It would be mid-September. The Rock was WWE Champion and about to defend against Benoit and the Brothers of Destruction in a fatal-four-way whilst Kurt had made Triple H the de facto face as their love triangle storyline kicked up a couple of gears. The pair would team with Kane to take on the formidable trio of The Game, The Great One and The Deadman, who would pick up the victory on the SmackDown Go Home for Unforgiven. Kurt and Chris would essentially swap partners for the next PPV while maintaining their previous feuds too. Kurt would retain the services of Stephanie as a business partner despite the Billion Dollar Princess sticking with her husband and would soon become the number one contender for the gold. Benoit had yet to put his title aspirations behind him however and wouldn’t let anything get in his way, including Hunter’s missus. The Crippler taking out Steph also incurred the wrath of Angle. With very recent history between the Rocky and Trips, when a SmackDown main event put them as partners against Kurt and Chris (I am making Benangle a thing) it was going to be volatile. It was fantastic viewing. Obviously a dream pairing and dream match type scenario that had Benangle fighting amongst themselves before their opponents even came through the curtain. They did eventually get on the same page however and we get some excellent action before Stephanie gets very involved in a finish which sees Kurt pin Rocky (recommended viewing SD 28 September 2000). The quartet would end the PPV build together again, this time in a four corners match. It was much of the same as Steph once again interferes to give her business partner the victory, this time over her husband.

    The two would then go their separate ways for a while as Kurt would embark on his first world title run. Benoit would hold down a solid upper midcard role during this time but they would be reunited as a team in the build to No Way Out 2001. Rocky would be looking to regain his title whilst rumble winner Steve Austin was about to settle his long running feud with Triple H. The Game and The Rattlesnake were battling with a no physical violence clause however and that let Benoit enter the feud as the heel hitman. Where do you go from taking on a dream team of Triple H and The Rock? Stone Cold and The Rock obviously. It’s another fun outing but is more about building the double main event as the heels took the L. One month later and we were on the final stretch of the Road to WrestleMania 17. Both men had played a major role in the the year leading up to that point but both seemed lost in the shuffle just a couple of weeks away from the big event. New Commissioner William Regal would use them to soften up the WWE and Intercontinental Champs in a 3-on-2 handicap match. As The Olympian and The Crippler would walk to the ring, Kurt would instruct Chris to soften Rocky up with the crossface so he could finish him off with the ankle lock. It was that damn easy to set the wheels in motion for the next three months. That same week they’d team up again on SmackDown to take on The Great One. Everything was going great until Chris Benoit locked the champ in the crossface. Kurt, assumingly thinking he should be the one to put Rocky away, would place the champion’s foot on the rope causing the break. He’d tag himself in but go down to a Rock Bottom. Rock would then put The Crippler in sharpshooter post-match, with Angle smiling and walking away.




    It took a week to create the tension and they’d be left with just one more to build to their Mania showdown. On Raw the challenge would be made for the match with Benoit getting the upper hand until old Angle buddies Edge and Christian made the save as their friend tapped in the crossface. The Hardys would make up the numbers for a six man tag later that night. Team ECK would lose the battle but win the war on the night. Benoit’s quick face turn in this feud also saw him turfed out of the Radicalz and new leader top honcho Eddie Guerrero would team with Angle on the Go Home SmackDown as The Rabid Wolverine would partner Latino Heat’s Mania opponent Test. Benoit would get the win by tapping out his former stablemate but Kurt would gain revenge for Raw by making the Crippler tap in the ankle lock after the match. So the stage was set. A year after they made their WrestleMania debuts alongside Chris Jericho, Kurt and Chris would be going one-on-one at the Granddaddy of them all. The story was who could make the other tap. Who was the better technical wrestler. And their spot on the greatest Mania of all time would just be the first of 5 big one-on-one bouts as they would try and prove who was the better man.

    Match one of the feud start out on the mat with lots of counter wrestling. With the Canadian constantly gaining the upperhand, the Olympian would resort to using more pro tactics to turn the tide. They’d show off all the styles they had in their arsenal in the back and forth 15 minute battle but it was the the submission victory that they really wanted. We saw a great sign of the changing fan mentality as the crowd popped for every submission attempt. Benoit would have Angle tapping following a ref bump which stepped up the urgency. Suddenly the win was more important than the tap out. An Angle Slam and Flying Headbutt both failed to get the job done and it was Kurt who eventually took the victory with a roll-up and handful of tights. It was a strong midcard encounter on a fantastic card but they were only just getting started. In the aftermath of Mania, the feud would merge once again with the Jericho-Regal battle and we’d see numerous variations of tag/handicap matches in the build to Backlash. The theme of the Benoit-Angle interaction would go back to where it started - who was the better submission wrestler. They’d spend the month having people tapping out left, right and centre and it would lead to WWE trying out a new match idea for the second encounter of the series. Ultimate Submission.

    The concept for Ultimate Submission was simple. A 30 minute, submission only ironman match. It’s one of the matches that sticks out most in my mind as being enjoyable. Watching back I can certainly see why. I don’t think that today I’d call it the cream of the crop of matches between the two, however it’s an absolutely fascinating encounter. It almost feels like you are watching a totally different sport as the strategy is so different. It starts out as mat wrestling and you quickly realise it is about any submission rather than their own submissions. They both play it smart early on, tapping out very quickly once placed in submission holds to make it 1-1. The Crippler continues with this strategy of “intelligence” whereas Kurt uses “intensity”, opting to spend more time battling out and this lands him a 3-1 (using both his and his opponent’s finishers). With a buffer in place he goes back to the third of his 3 I’s once more and starts to wind down the clock and use more brawling tactics. It looked like this would work for a good while but with time starting to run out, the match would drift into the trademark intense style with plenty of throws and suplexes and this would allow Benoit to even the score. Angle however would catch him in the ankle lock right at the death but time would run out before The Crippler tapped. As the Olympian would head off down the aisle (initially assuming he had won), the announcement came that there would be overtime, where a Benoit crossface would earn the victory. Despite a couple of question marks over how regulation time ended, this was a fantastic match and psychologically gripping. In match psychology and structure is not something I’d generally list as a Kurt strength so it was very interesting to see it at play here and it is a must watch match for any fan.

    Angle being Angle, he would go on to argue that sudden death should occur immediately at the end of the match (as stated in Olympic rules) and therefore he should have won. Benoit’s reaction to that was to steal Kurt’s gold medals and keep them in a “safe, warm place”. The Olympian would travel the world to win them back and the first stop was London at Insurrextion (a year after their first one-on-one PPV encounter). This time it would be in a 2 out of 3 Falls match. It would be exactly what you’d expect from a match between the two, which is always a good thing. The surprise was The Rabid Wolverine taking things 2-0 with the kicker being Benoit revealing he was keeping the medals down his tights all along. This would lead to the pair going the comedy route for the first time. We’d get a match on SmackDown (Kurt once again with the Commish and Benoit with Rikishi) where Angle would go in and retrieve his medals (and disgust himself by kissing them). His celebration however saw him get caught in the crossface and The Crippler would tap his rival out and get his medals back. Kurt would want a one-on-one match at Judgment Day to get his property back but Benoit had other ideas. It would be 3 Stages of Hell, with fall one being pinfall, fall 2 being submission and the decider being a ladder match.

    On paper, the Judgment Day match seems like it should be a classic. There’s a reason it’s not talked about much however. I mean it’s not a bad match by any stretch of the imagination but Benoit and Angle had set a standard with Ultimate Submission and 3 Stages struggled to replicate what the ironman did so well. Kurt was angry and came out of the blocks all guns blazing but gets caught very early on with an Angle Slam to put Chris one up. This leads to a long middle fall with the submission stipulation but the slow pace without the psychologically appealing ironman gimmick took a lot of the wind out of the sails. By the time an ankle lock leveled things up, things just felt a little flat. The action did pick up a bit during the ladder fall but by the time Edge & Christian interfered to help Kurt get his medals back, we unfortunately hadn’t witnessed the classic that looked to be forthcoming. As I said, it’s a decent match and the chemistry is there as always, it just wasn’t the barnstorming feud finisher you’d have hoped for. Fortunately, with 2 PPV victories each in the series, things would be squarely put to bed on the 11th June 2001 episode of Raw in a steel cage. It would be, for me, the best of the bunch and certainly in contention for the greatest Raw match of all time. The pace was blistering, there was urgency, the moves were on point, we had some fantastic high spots and a finish that would allow both men to put the feud behind them. Benoit had been transitioning into the main event scene following Judgment Day. He and Chris Jericho had won the tag titles from The Two Man Power Trip (in another greatest match in Raw history candidate) and would challenge Austin for the WWE title at King of the Ring following Hunter’s quad tear. Stone Cold would play a part in the finish to the cage match, smashing Benoit’s head with the door, allowing Kurt to escape with victory.




    Watching the 2001 feud back, it really was something tremendous to see progress. From a throwaway Angle comment that helped shoehorn them onto a stacked Mania card all the way to the fantastic end match. We saw styles and motivations change throughout. It wasn’t just a good match five times, it was five unique matches that painted a constantly changing story from beginning to clear ending. Any temptation to revisit the feud disappeared as Benoit left to have neck surgery following his shot at Austin. Kurt would keep himself very busy indeed in the months to come (stay tuned to this series for a column on that). When The Crippler would return to action a year later, the WWE landscape would be very different. In particular there would now be two brands. Kurt would be a staple of SmackDown and Benoit returned to Raw. But we will have to wait until next week to see that play out. Some questions to ponder coming out of their 2000-01. Where does their series of matches from Mania 17 onwards rank amongst the greatest in company history? What was your favourite match of the series? Why do you think WWE have never gone back to the Ultimate Submission well and who do you think would have been a good choice to have participated in another one? I should be back next week to continue to the story of Angle and Benoit and address some of these questions. Until then, peace!


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    Sigh. I think I can be a little more critical with you than I would with other people on here.

    I found this very hard to follow. First, it's too long. Second, it's hard to figure out what the theme of the series is, outside of "Kurt Angle". It seemed like this installment was going to focus on the Angle v Benoit rivalry, but it seems like you didn't walk it through to the end. It's almost like you realized that you had already rambled enough, and decided to add a line at the end about picking up the conversation in your next column.

    I really liked the opening column, but this one really missed the mark.

  3. #3
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    Another enjoyable entry here Mazda, glad you are keeping on with this. Personally I didn't mind the length or find it hard to follow your theme at all, so to each their own!

    What really struck me is how much people really did get in each other's business at this time. One of my least favorite things in wrestling is when everyone stays in their own bubble but that was never really the case in this era. One feud morphs into 3 or 4 and everyone gets involved, I love it. I also really dug that you mentioned that psychology was often Angle's weak point. He more than made up for it most of the time with his freakish athletic ability, especially if he had an opponent who could pick up the slack in that area (like Benoit!), but it helps this take shape not just as a love letter to Angle but also an analysis of his career, both at this point and in general.

    That cage match towards the end, is that the one where Angle moonsaults off the top of the cage? He would continue doing that spot until it was damn scary, let me tell you. I think he did it as late as 2014 and I was scared I would going to see a televised death. If you haven't seen a bad Angle match, then you should hope WWE holds firm to not letting him wrestle at 'Mania, because I have a feeling that streak would be broken.

    Benangle sounds like a delicious snack. Some kind of corn chip maybe?

    Fun stuff, looking forward to the next one!

  4. #4
    Weed General D.O.N's Avatar
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    I only started truly following wrestling mid-late 2001, so I had no idea they fought this much and had an extensive program. I only knew about the 'Mania triple threat that included Jericho and I had no idea that they fought one-one at a Wrestlemania. Loved that I could learn about that here.

    The best part is that this feud is still far from over, which I'm sure you will be addressing in the next entry in this series. Really enjoying this so far, Mazza.

  5. #5
    What else is on? JSR-13's Avatar
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    I forgot about how well Angle and Benoit worked together, and of course we understand why WWE won't air a special about this on the network, but still. It's tough to pick a favorite match, and I like what you said about not having the "same match five times."

    As far as revisiting the ultimate submission match, the focus is too much on gimmick calendar year PPVs that are rushed to, and there's virtually no time to organically build a rivalry to the point where it would call for such. Doesn't make a lot of sense to do it when you've already had a hell in a cell match, which was proceeded by a Falls count anywhere match on the go-home episode. If there was a recent feud that could have ran with it- and this might be a controversial pick, I think the Nattie Charlotte feud could have went with it, but instead we had to relive Montreal '97 for the 30th time. Sasha and Charlotte may have also done it, but I'm done with them "making history" for the time being.

    You wrote this in such detail that it almost suffices for not actually watching the matches themselves. It was nice to go down memory lane, but sad at the same time, knowing that WWE is capable of producing intense feuds and allowing their characters to cut loose- but they just don't. We are a far cry from this era today in WWE. I look forward to the next part of the series, so try not to get bored with it just yet.
    Don't Touch That Dial!



  6. #6
    @TRSOTP @MazzaLOP Mazza's Avatar
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    Dave - #FAKEFEEDBACK

    Seriously though we need this. Gotta keep people on their toes. It was certainly a decision in progress to go to two parts. I wasn't feeling I had reached that stage but was conscious I would if I carried on and 01 felt like the good midpoint to stop. As for the theme of the series, it is simply Kurt Angle. It's not a full career retrospective, but a few columns looking at what I feel are interesting things and angles (pun intended) that can be placed amongst the greatest in company history.

    Mizles - Preach on! It is the single most depressing thing about today's product for me. These little bubbles really hurt my viewing pleasure. We had a little while in the early autumn where Raw tapped into this again but unfortunately that is now well behind us. As for Kurt, not going to focus in on the negatives but yeah, they can't be ignored. Pacing was never really his thing but when your pace is generally 100mph, you have less time to worry about it. I guess it is to then what the "indy style" is to now. What it lacks in logic and consistency it makes up for in excitement. Yeah, he does the moonsault spot in that match. Nowhere near as disturbing in hindsight than Benoit doing Wolverine Got Wings from the cage though!! Definitely worth a revisit that one.

    Ken D.O.N. - Wow, so you pretty much came in on the back end of this then. Yeah. I often get long term rivalries mixed up without going back. Bits kinda all blend together but they could be miles apart. Definitely a lot more to come though. Although they surprisingly go quiet for the end of their respective WWE tenures.

    Jacer - Yeah totally understandable why this won't be featured but such good stuff in there it's such a shame. Yeah, those pesky gimmick PPVs gum up the works. I think we've not had much in the way of submission wrestlers too. Plenty have submissions but not many I'd class as submission wrestlers. Bryan coulda gone that direction but not sure against who. Del Rio might have worked in that setting too. Shame we never got a big ADR-DB program as it happens! Generally I am not the biggest fan of submissions but it's nice to have a bit more of a mix. Think you're actually right. The girls may have been the best fit.


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    MazzleJake - I prefer to call it #alternativefeedback.

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    Mazza--This feud was happening during a time that due to finances I was watching in the reverse way I am now--watching television every show, but rarely pay per views. For that reason, I didn't see a lot of those pay per view encounters. I should make my own playlist of this series; sounds awesome. Benoit is, obviously, one of my favorites of all time and he and Angle did always work well together. Another great entry. I'm somewhere in the middle of Dave's and Mizzie's opinions. This was long and did read that way, but at the same time I was informed and entertained. 4/10

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    Quote Originally Posted by david.fenichel View Post
    Sigh. I think I can be a little more critical with you than I would with other people on here.

    I found this very hard to follow. First, it's too long. Second, it's hard to figure out what the theme of the series is, outside of "Kurt Angle". It seemed like this installment was going to focus on the Angle v Benoit rivalry, but it seems like you didn't walk it through to the end. It's almost like you realized that you had already rambled enough, and decided to add a line at the end about picking up the conversation in your next column.

    I really liked the opening column, but this one really missed the mark.
    Love this - We have a relative n00b, giving a hall of famer a reality check. This used to happen all the time, and hasnt for a few years now. Well played Dave.

    Mazza - your column sucks

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    I can't tell if Bear is being serious or sarcastically $hitting on me, but either way, I'll play along.

    Maz actually echoed your sentiments privately on this. Apparently, people used to be a lot more honest and provide constructive feedback on columns. For me personally, I wrote some columns last year that weren't good. Every single comment was positive and telling me how great they were. They were trash and no one wanted to be the one who told me that. Fast forward to my recent column series. The first entry was awful. Horrible. Way too short and didn't bring any meat to the table. Two or three different guys went out of their way to give specific feedback on where I fell short. I took their feedback, changed what I was doing, and the remainder of my column series was well-received. I wouldn't mind seeing a little more constructive criticism across the board, especially on my own columns.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Oliver's Avatar
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    I've been trying to read and feed on this for the past week, and kept opening it and shutting it again.

    I'm a bit with Dave here - I think what I'd have loved personally is if you'd gone fully into those early matches and the tag work separately to the actual one on one series, just to allow a bit more analysis come through, you know? There's nothing wrong with the column as it is, but I could have done with a little more Mazza and a little less recap of what happened. Just pulling up highlights of matches and stuff, but really diving in to what it meant as a whole. Tricky to do with those shorter early matches, though, isn't it? I'm just sort of riffing, but could that have worked? I think I'd have been really into a column of this length that was zoned in on that early period of Angle/Benoit and laying out their history with some personal detail sprinkled in - sometimes it can feel a bit throwaway, I guess.

    Don't get me wrong, because I liked the column and bloody love the idea - it's sad that Angle vs Benoit doesn't get the props it deserves due to...welll...you know...that thing...so I'm glad to see it get some shine here. Just would have like a bit more, opinion and a bit less 'stuff happened', I guess. Not a big criticism, mind - there's such a rich history between the two I guess you either have to go maximal or minimal (is that a thing?) with it, and this felt like it tried to be the best of both which is where it fell down.

    Looking forward to the next bit, though!

  12. #12
    So, you've gone full Skaos on me over the past few years eh? Ok, it wasn't *that* bad, but its first place my mind went as I was reading. That's not a place I ever expected your columns to take me.

    This wasn't too long, the problem is that it felt "too long". You are writing an awful lot, and not really saying much, you know what I mean? Your spending far too much real estate trying to plow through history instead of some actual examination and deconstruction. This was an amazing feud for its time, but it was kind if sandwiched in the midcard of the times. Today it would be headlining.

    I think you part of the problem is that this is very hard to tell where your perspective is on this. Is this designed to be a complete narration of this feud from a historic or recap perspective? Or is this supposed to be a more an analytical examination of the feud? I think the biggest problem I can see is that it appears to be trying to do both, and isn't doing either exceptionally well.

    A recomendation for either perspective - Historic -

    You are oddly very non specific in all of this. Use a few headings here and there to specific identify the time period of the matches you are examining. Specific dates of the shows, date of the PPVs, etc. If you have done all of the rewatching and research to reaccquaint yourself with this feud, make it a stark and noticiable part of the column. Small little historic details provide much richer overall content and adds legitimacy and purpose to your examination. If your primary focus is going to be a historic examination, I think you'll have to slow down the narrative accordingly. Explore the content you are shoe-horning in with the (god-damned asides).


    Analytic -

    "In match psychology and structure is not something I’d generally list as a Kurt strength" - you make this pretty bold statement, yet barely follow up on it, which is especially galling after your intro makes the declaration that there aren't any bad Kurt angle matches. This is the kind of thing that requires exploration and development, especially since you are using it foundationally as part of your narrative. The network already exists as a medium to show me precisely what happened. Use it as a positive. Let it do the heavy lifting of detailing "what" happened, and spend the bulk of your narrative explaining why it was important and why it would have an effect on the coming narrative.

    Finally - You write an entire column about Kurt Angle, and you don't once mention Pittsburgh. PITTSBURGH! You want to write about him, you pay fealty to the city!

    Give yourself a little time before the next installment. This is the kind of stuff that requires some actual development - maybe even a peer review before a re-draft (just spitballing here).

    TLR - This column was undercooked, and then over-plated. I know you can do better, because I've seen you do this exact thing better.

  13. #13
    @TRSOTP @MazzaLOP Mazza's Avatar
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    Fuck me, it's 2009 in here again!

    Xan - Ouch, the Bret score... Not a bad way to watch at the time to be honest. TV was so damn good in that 00-01 run, even watching back for certain matches and segments for this column I'd get sucked into the whole episode. Definitely some stuff to check out there. I think in particular the ultimate submission.

    Bear - Shut your whore mouth, cock face.

    Big Spender - Yep. Let's get this going. If this column can kickstart this type of movement then it makes my return worthwhile. Also it's the weekend so I am going to rip your latest a new one at some point while waiting for bouts!!

    Oli - Ah the old CF hokey-cokey. As a really bad reader I am very familiar with it. And there's that other conflict. The constant battle between opinion and recap has been the theme of my column writing career process. I think the era probably plays into this particular one a bit. There was just so much going on around everything at this time and my natural instinct was to go into it and keep digging away. I think I tend to go into more history the further back stuff is too.

    Beeks - Skaos you say? This was 1000 words and I don't care what your MS Word tells you, my word counter is right. Yeah I was certainly trying to juggle both sides. Very helpful here dude. Plan is to lean heavier on analytical next time out. As for Pittsburgh. Fuck that place. Kurt got out of there as quickly as possible. It's true.

    Thanks guys. This is fantastic. I've had a long arse week so haven't started part 2 yet which appears to be good. Strategy revision is underway. Time to bring the A Game next time out.


  14. #14
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
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    1,077
    Quote Originally Posted by david.fenichel View Post
    I can't tell if Bear is being serious or sarcastically $hitting on me, but either way, I'll play along.

    Maz actually echoed your sentiments privately on this. Apparently, people used to be a lot more honest and provide constructive feedback on columns. For me personally, I wrote some columns last year that weren't good. Every single comment was positive and telling me how great they were. They were trash and no one wanted to be the one who told me that. Fast forward to my recent column series. The first entry was awful. Horrible. Way too short and didn't bring any meat to the table. Two or three different guys went out of their way to give specific feedback on where I fell short. I took their feedback, changed what I was doing, and the remainder of my column series was well-received. I wouldn't mind seeing a little more constructive criticism across the board, especially on my own columns.

    I'm 100% serious

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