10 Macho Man Randy Savage Youtubes in lieu of an obituary
(from Where’s Randy Savage)
Professional wrestling is “kinda like” a lot of things. It’s kinda like ballet dancing in that it can only be practiced by people who are so dedicated to their craft they’re prepared to slowly destroy their bodies. It can be compared to reality TV because it’s all about convincing people that the obvious fraud they’re watching is real. It can be compared to pornography because it makes two millionaires for every 2,000 individuals it leaves battered, broken and dead. But I wanna talk about what it has in common with snooker.
Snooker and pro-wrestling share exactly the same number one problem: the superstars of today are nowhere near as beloved by the general public as the legends of the 80s. No matter how much attention and care and media pushes are given to John Cena and Randy Orton and Alberto Del Rio and Shaun Murphy, they’ll never be as beloved as those larger-than-life characters from the 80s were. And if Hulk Hogan was Steve Davies (an all-conquering blandness that slowly began to reveal itself as more complex and disturbed as the years passed), then Randy Savage was its Alex Higgins: a drug-addled genius who was so naturally talented at the pure technical side of matters that he could focus on the showmanship. Randy may have preferred four or five key bumps to a pint of the black stuff, but the comparison is a good one. And now they’re both dead. And rather than talk about “What Randy Savage Meant to Me” or write an explanation of how “He Was The DJ AM of Wrestling”, I think there’s probably an argument for just throwing up some of his finer moments on YouTube instead. Enjoy.
1. Randy Savage cuts a UK-specific promo after a win against Shawn Michaels in 1992
In which Randy starts to look a lot like RA The Rugged Man while mocking the marital difficulties of Lady Diana Spencer and the Prince of Wales. The claim of taking the beautiful Miss Elizabeth on 1,000 honeymoons takes on a hilariously light-hearted side effect when you consider the anecdote of him locking her in their dressing room when he wasn’t around in order to stop her talking to other man in his absence. SKY MOVIES PLUS.
2. Duelling pre-Wrestlemania V promos with Randy and Hulk Hogan
If you want to explain interview styles of 1980s wrestling to someone, you show them this video. Hogan starts matters off with his 50% Superstar Billy Graham, 50% Reverend Billy Graham steroid-fuelled testifying, and then Savage comes in with the kind of aggressive cokiness that makes you wonder if the only director who could ever do true justice to his life story would be Martin Scorsese circa 1989.
3. Macho Man and Sensational Sherri threaten the Mega Maniacs while Zeus stands around
How is Zeus the only one still alive here? How did that happen? I always rated Sherri as a better valet for Savage than Miss Elizabeth (let’s overlook the assorted ex-strippers he rolled with in 1998 WCW), her Death Becomes Her crossed with Her Out of 1980s New Wavers The Missing Persons steez seemed like a great balance for Savage, insanity on insanity.
4. Randy Savage on the Arsenio Hall Show, 1989
“MORGAN FAIRCHILD DO YOU SEE THAT?”
5. The end of Ric Flair vs Randy Savage from Wrestlemania VIII
The previous two parts are linked from it. Underrated great match, not least because Ric Flair’s blood-stained hair looks surprisingly like those poncy restaurants you get in East London where they serve pie and mash except the pie is filled with, like, salsa and guanciale and shit, and when the sauce leaks into the mash you get that weird kinda mottled effect. And that’s Ric Flair’s hair. Four of the commentary greats get their work on after the match: Savage and Hennig are both gone, I can’t imagine Heenan and Flair will both be long for this world. “THIS IS WHAT MAKES YOU TICK. THIS IS WHAT MAKES YOU TICK. THIS IS WHAT MAKES YOU TICK.”
6. Randy Savage entertains some hicks as part of the WWF invasion of USWA
Wrestling scholars more schooled than me can possibly explain what the deal was with all the WWF guys turning up in Memphis in 1993 was. All I know is that Savage made for a fantastic “bully from the big leagues” threatening to beat up Jerry Lawler for not having as impressive a commercial endorsement as Slim Jim.
7. Post-WCW Heavyweight Title victory promo in 1995
Check out those electric guitars someone shoved under “Land of Hope and Glory” in his intro. That’s necessary. Savage’s WCW is pretty worthless in terms of good matches (cue someone telling me that he actually had a string of five-star classics on Saturday Night with fucking Dave Taylor or someone), but he still cut a decent promo. Dunno why both he and Hogan’s voices went deeper in Atlanta though, probably something to do with the climate.
8. Randy Savage sits in a chair
“HE’S GOT A CHAIR FOR CRYING OUT LOUD.” Like I say, you can kinda avoid most of his WCW run. This is when wrestlers got massive cheers for saying “ass” on a regular basis. Like Eric Clapton, sober Savage is basically worthless.
9. Randy Savage turns up in TNA for no reason in 2004
I mean I think that’s Randy Savage, but it could be Adam Buxton dressed as The Punisher. In lieu of talking about that, here’s some Dave Meltzer quotes about Savage’s spell in late 90s WCW:
“Savage did an interview with the bucket wearing a red fur coat. Nash showed up holding a bag. Nash said he only brought one bag to the ring and Savage brought three. Nash left. A contortionist came out of the bag and dumped the (sewage) on Savage’s head. It was nearly a disaster as the contortionist had trouble unzipping the bag and getting out” – The Wrestling Observer Newsletter: June 14, 1999“Savage speared Rodman into a garbage bin. He then threw a guy out of a portable toilet and locked Rodman in and knocked it over. Rodman came out looking none too happy. Gorgeous George came out and gave Rodman a low blow. I guess that’s what Rodman gets for raping her in that trailer” – The Wrestling Observer Newsletter: August 23, 1999
“Flair did an interview saying the elbow off the top was now banned. J.J. Dillion agreed with him. I guess they forgot the announcement made last week that the elbow off the top was banned. When Savage wrestled later in the show, guess what his finishing move was? Since the move was banned twice now in two weeks, the ref didn’t DQ Savage and instead counted the pin” – The Wrestling Observer Newsletter