Nu Wrestling Evolution, 2005
Not sure if you’ve noticed, but the move from WWE Network to Peacock here for us ‘muricans has proven to…well…kinda suck. The massive library we were all accustomed to having at our fingertips is mostly gone, and we’re left with the most basic of stuff imaginable. You want a recent Raw? No problem. A random WrestleMania? Sure, it’s there. But deeper dive stuff has been lost to the ether. It’s almost enough to drive you to drink.
And if you’re lucky, you’d wind up where we start off our induction today, which is with Rikishi and Scott Steiner in a bar!
Really. Here they are doing shots and everything!
This is apparently a show from something called Nu Wave Wrestling, which I have literally no recollection of. To be fair, I hardly remember what I had for breakfast this morning so it may have been the biggest thing ever back in 2005, which is the date that is plastered on it. I believe this was a series in Italy and featured local talent as well as major US stars.
Major US stars like Scott Steiner and Rikishi. Did I mention they were drinking yet? Well, they are, and it doesn’t take long for them to tell the bartender he also needs to drink, so he starts getting tanked too. After this, Rikishi and Scott shake hands, Rikishi puts on a hat, and they leave together.
I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.
The lovefest continues, as we are now whisked away to a marina, where Rikishi asks a 50-something year old woman to go sit with a very gloomy Big Poppa Pump. I have no idea why he is in the dumps. Nor do I have a clue where this is going. In the interest of fairness, though, I will admit I am equally intrigued and horrified.
On second thought, no, not equally, more like 10% intrigued and 90% horrified.
At this point, I should admit I have no idea what on earth I am watching, but the pendulum has definitely swung back to 50/50 on the intrigued-horrified scale. If this turns out to be 47 minutes of Steiner and Rikishi as wacky buddies going on a series of misadventures, I am all for it.
And it sure seems that’s the direction we are going, as now we get them laughing and playing VIDEOGAMES. I never would have pictured Big Poppa Pump as a gamer in any way shape or form, but he seems to be having a ball here. I think maybe they’re playing as Stone Cold and the Rock!
I know what you’re thinking, though. You are thinking, “RD, this is great and all, but what would really be amazing is if they went for a walk in the park and fed some ducks.”
To which I can happily say…
…your wish is Nu Wave’s command!
And just like any good storyline, all of these precious shared moments lead to a pro wrestling match between the two.
Yeah, I mean, we don’t even get a commercial or anything, it’s just getting drunk, have fun on a Playstation 2, feeding ducks, then hitting each other in the head with a chair.
Oh, and that elbow drop you just saw? Yeah, that’s the finish of the match.
Can we get these guys back out chilling together? Any petting zoos in the area?
Sadly, we don’t have time to ponder that as it’s time to head to our next match of the evening. This one features Vampiro taking on, and with the good Lord above as my witness I am not making this up…
Are these two friends too? I totally want to see them going to see grabbing a pizza, going shopping at Hot Topic, then catching the midnight showing of House of Wax.
Anyway, Kishi has better luck against Vamp than he did against Scotty, pulling out the win by sitting on his foe.
So I am guessing they are not, in fact, friends, but who knows.
Because now Rikishi heads backstages and is immediately attacked by…
Just in case you were confused to Scott’s true feelings, he loudly proclaims, and I quote, “I WAS NEVER YOUR FRIEND!”
Dude, you fed ducks together!
What kind of despicable human being are you anyway?
Then we get a vision of Vampiro sitting atop a row of lockers directing traffic. He motions to Scotty to clobber Kishi with a fire extinguisher, which leads us to a fade to
And now things get truly dark, as we get a HEART RATE MONITOR going over Kishi’s prone carcass. Thankfully, he doesn’t flatline. But…
…he does wind up in the HOSPITAL, where the doctor recites the following dialogue:
“De situation izt bad. He haz bed concussion. He ken’t wressle any meer. Inz my perzonel oopinioon, he could be perelized for de rest of hiz life.”
And the academy overlooked this man.
And indeed it is dire straights, to the point that his friends go to his room and give him last rites.
I’d like to think he’s up in heaven right now thinking of the good times he had feeding ducks with Big Poppa Pump.
From there we get a wrestling match, but if you’re like me, you just fast forward until you find…
…Scott Steiner wandering around a castle before spontaneously combusting.
At this point, I want to remind you, dear reader, I am not making any of this up. It’s just your old buddy and your old pal RD Reynolds reporting the facts. When those facts include Big Poppa Pump blowing up like the Death Star, I feel it’s my duty to relay such information.
More wrestling follows with whoever this guy is. This is where I’d normally do some research and give details on this man’s career, but who can be bothered with that when Rikishi is in the hospital clinging to life?
Lying motionless on what appears to be a butcher’s cutting table, Rikishi asks his friend, “Cosa ha detto il dottore?” Translated literally, I believe that means “please help – the nurse has stolen my keys.”
I kid, I kid.
He inquires as to what the doctors had to say. In tears, Rikishi learns that he may never walk again. He implores his brother/cousin/Idontknowwhothisis to go out and get revenge for him.
“PROMISE ME THAT!” he bellows from his deathbed as he cohort promises that he shall do his best.
More Italian indy wrestling follows, and no offense to these men who are working to entertain us, but WHO CARES.
And with apologies as well to The Vampire Named Kevin ripping off Dustin Rhodes’ stupid WCW gimmick, I don’t need that either.
No, what we need is an update on the main characters, namely Vampiro who apparently is running around on all fours like a dog. I’d suggest he’s turned into a werewolf, but his name is VAMPIRO after all!
The show comes to its conclusion with another Samoan running around looking like he broke into Yoshi Kwan’s closet and stole his collection of hats. Wait, that’s Tonga Kid? The same Tonga Kid that tagged up with Haku like 25 years ago on WWF Superstars?
And…well, that sure was something. I’ve watched a lot of wrestling over the years, and I have to say I’ve never seen anything quite like it. I honestly don’t know if it was good or bad. It was totally random, I’ll give it that.
The question therefore is this: should I continue reviewing this series (provided I can even find more episodes)?
Do you care if Rikishi returns from the brink of death?
Will Scott Steiner repent and return to feeding ducks?
And what of that Vampiro guy? Will he change his name to Werewolfo?
As the kids say, let me know if the comments below!
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