Induction: The Kiss-My-Arse Match – At least it wasn’t a Bra-and-Knickers Match

30 Submitted by on Tue, 21 April 2015, 12:00

WWE, 2002

Thanks to the WWE Network, even lifelong wrestling fans can discover material they’ve never seen before. For fans outside of the British Isles, that would include pay-per-views like Insurrextion and Rebellion that, in addition to being synonyms, were exclusive to the UK.

Since the events were barely promoted in the US, scarcely anything noteworthy happened on the shows, and the results were seldom acknowledged on television.

In the case of today’s induction topic, that was certainly a good thing.

See, whenever WWE did a pay-per-view in the UK, they would typically feature a British performer on the card.

arse04

Not so at 2002’s Rebellion PPV. So WWE did the next best thing and came up with a gimmick match specially for the fans in Manchester. What was this revolutionary match type?

arse05

The Kiss-My-Arse Match. Get it? Because “arse” is what English people say instead of “ass.” Sure, the British viewers might not have noticed because, after all, “arse” is just an everyday word for them, but it was surely a riot for all the viewers in America (of which there were none).

Vince got Rikishi, the chap with the biggest bum on the roster… arse06
arse07 …to face Albert, the bloke with the hairiest Tijuana Brass on the roster (and who, to Tazz’s shock and confusion, did not shave his ass like any normal person in his experience. You’ve got to wonder what kind of neighborhood Red Hook is.)…  
…and despite the two having no storyline history, had the two duke it out for the prize of sticking their ass into the other guy’s face. arse08
arse09 Predictably, Rikishi came out on top…
…but A-Train understandably wasn’t about to pucker up to Fatu’s fanny (which, for the benefit of readers in the UK, is a tame and childish word for “butt” in the US)… arse10
arse11 …giving Rikishi a low blow when it came time to make good on the stipulation.
He did, however, feel the urge to give himself a wedgie so his butt could steal a kiss from his opponent. arse12
arse13 But, of course, Rikishi delivered a low blow — the very same thing Albert had done thirty seconds earlier but still never saw coming —
— and gave him the stink face instead. arse14
arse15 As far as Wrestlecrap goes, this match is an open-and-shut case — no ifs, ands, or asses about it. Sometimes, there are angles or characters that are borderline-crap, mixed bags of good and bad that might make for fun write-ups but are still pretty ambiguous as far as deserving the label of “Wrestlecrap.” Not so with the Rikishi vs. Albert.
So, on the one hand, you might have something iffy like “Wildman” Marc Mero… arse16
arse17  [And for those who don’t understand why the Wildman might be considered for induction, recall that the former Johnny B. Badd left WCW after objecting to being paired up with Kimberly Page, real-life wife of Dallas Page.
It’s a good thing Marc was so committed to his marriage vows, because a less committed man would have been more than a little miffed at being handled so poorly, he’d wind up in the fans’ eyes as Mr. Sable. arse18 
arse19 It wasn’t that Vince and company lacked confidence in Mero. Sure, neither Vince McMahon nor Todd Pettengill could pronounce his (four-letter) name, but Mero had a lot going in his favor.
Dubbed, “The Wildman,” he would pull off daredevil stunts out of nowhere in his matches, but, unlike the Teddy Harts and Jack Evanses of the world, he was big enough so that his moves looked like they actually did damage. It didn’t hurt his career that his wrestling style gave Vince McMahon an excuse to say the phrase, “high-risk maneuver” at least three times per match. arse20 
arse21 So the upside was that “Wildman” Marc Mero was a spectacular athlete. The downside was that he was also a colossal dork.
First of all, there were his goofy promos, into which he tried to shovel as many “jungle” references as possible. Not helping matters were his and Vince’s talk of answering the call of the wild, which I think meant he had to go to the bathroom. arse22
arse23 Then, there were his constant reminders that he was indeed wild. This phenomenon popped up in WWF Magazine, where he answered seemingly every interview question with the word, “Wild,” or, rather, “WILD!”
Highlights included his favorite snack (chocolates silk pies from Perkins – “They drive me WILD!”), arse24
arse25 …his favorite TV show (“Seinfeld. Kramer wrote the book on being WILD!”),
…the person he would most like to meet (“President Clinton. I have some WILD ideas for him!”), arse26
arse27 …and his favorite video game (“Tetris — it drives me WILD!”).
(although he declined to name a favorite band, instead philosophizing that “I answer to my own beat… a much different beat… a beat that many would never understand.” It sounds for all the world like Mero is confessing to some unspeakable animal fetish not unlike Troy McClure’s, but with jungle predators. That might explain the big cat pattern on his ring gear.) arse28 
arse30f Just how wild (excuse me, WILD!) was Mero? Just look at him do this hip dance move!
I think this is supposed to be channeling Pulp Fiction, but every time Mero did this double-peace-sign across his eyes, he looked like Adam West doing the Batusi. arse30c
arse30f arse30a
arse30b tumblr_lumaadiJi21qdl8cqo2_400
arse31 So just looking at his presentation, the Wildman was setting up to be a major goofball. Throw Sable into the mix, and now the male fans had even more reason to boo Mero.
Jim Cornette, who was writing for the WWF at the time, could not understand the logic in giving a babyface like Marc Mero a female valet. It’s not just that it would make women lose interest in him, as in the standard rule for rockstars (“Women are going to want to have sex with you, and we want them to think they can”), but the men in the audience would resent the jungle boy for having a hot piece of tail in his corner. arse32
arse33  The WWF had had women in men’s corners before, but with the exception of Dusty Rhodes with Sapphire, none of those men were babyfaces. Bam Bam had Luna, Skip had Sunny, HHH had his valets, Goldust had Marlena, and Macho Man, Honky Tonk Man, Ted DiBiase, and Shawn Michaels all had Sherri Martel, but their women were there:

  1. to make men jealous,
  2. to act as mouthpieces, and/or
  3. to have the heels look like cowards who needed a woman to cheat for them —
— and decked out in those cat trunks, Mero looked like a big enough pussy already. arse34
arse35 The closest parallel one can find is Macho Man and Miss Elizabeth, but most of the time Savage was a heel who mistreated Liz to get heat, eventually turning heel again over her. Watching the WWF from 1996, one gets the very strong feeling that Vince was trying to create a new Macho Man and Liz for a new decade.
At every opportunity, Vince fawned over Sable and how doggone classy she was (while heel Jerry Lawler just complained about how much of a dog she was). If fans couldn’t tell on their own how classy Sable was (and believe me, they couldn’t), Vince was all too happen to jam the idea down their throats. arse36 
arse30d How exactly Vince knew that Sable was classy was always a mystery. Was it the classy way she rubbed Mero’s chest?
Or was it her classy vinyl cat suit? arse38
arse39 Or maybe it was the classy cat-of-nine-tails she brought to the ring with her, rounding out the S&M motif already established by her faux-leather gear and whip-filled entrance music. Sable and Marc’s initials even spelled, “S&M.”
Whatever it was about Sable, Vince sure made everybody know what a classy lady she was, perhaps thinking of that Jimi Hendrix song. arse40 art0donnell
arse41 And let’s not forget Jimi’s entire album about Rena Mero called, “Electric Ladyland.” The Stepford Wives ran on electricity, right?
Not since Homer Simpson’s misguided optimism about his FOX biopic had anyone been so wrong about “classy.” arse42aarse42b
arse43 Vince even changed the Meros’ attire for a few months, coincidentally putting Marc in a robe and Sable in a gown. Remind you of anyone?
Sable would spend the whole match standing around looking classy, occasionally mimicking the human facial expressions of concern and fear… arse44c
arse44b arse44a
 arse45 …then celebrating a Mero win with the obligatory Batusi. But she would never, ever distract the referee or hand her man a foreign object, which is to say that she served no purpose but to make the men in the crowd wish death upon the goober she was sleeping with.
While McMahon and Lawler had no qualms about discussing Sunny’s “assets,” Vince spoke of Sable as no less than a paragon of virtue. arse46
arse47 Vince tried in vain to package the two as “the picture of class,” “two very special people,” and “the WWF’s one-two punch”…
…and the fans responded by cheering as Mero got punked out by the cooler heels like Stone Cold Steve Austin. arse48
arse49 Also, by telling Sable to show her boobs.
Not to say that they never cheered Mero; they would go nuts after he pulled off a flippy thing (even if it didn’t make a lick of sense, like this sunset flip)… arse50
arse51 …then promptly remember that this was the same guy who got driven into a frenzy by Tetris and silk pies and who tried to sunbathe in the Gund Arena.
Ultimately, Marc Mero faded into obscurity while Sable’s popularity soared, making way more money than her husband ever did. arse52
arse53

He never did get a position in the Clinton administration’s Cabinet.

 

So you could say that the WWF didn’t work out well for Mero, who got divorced from Sable in 2004. Then again, he probably got half Sable’s money out of it, so decide for yourself how bad the Mero’s handling by the Federation hurt him in the long-run.]
…and on the other hand, you have a match where two grown strangers aspire to stick their butt cracks into each other’s faces for the sake of a stupid reference to local slang. arse54

 There’s no comparison.

Written by

A wrestling fan ever since the days of Wrestlemania IX, Art graduated from college in the same building where Art Donovan called King of the Ring 1994. He also runs the "How Much Does This Guy Weigh?" blog, where he reviews New Generation-Era Monday Night Raws. Follow him on Twitter @Art0Donnell. Email at: art@wrestlecrap.com
30 Responses to "Induction: The Kiss-My-Arse Match – At least it wasn’t a Bra-and-Knickers Match"
  1. Jimbolian says:

    Bravo….just bravo. A true way to celebrate the 15th anniversary.

  2. Drew says:

    Mero had some WILD ideas for President Clinton?! I’ll bet Wiilie had a few wild ideas of his own that Mero couldn’t match on his best day. I hope to hell he’d have sense enough to leave Sable home.

  3. Cameron A. says:

    Lumber. I need lumber.

  4. Thomas Moffatt says:

    I remember one of the British Isles only PPVs in 2001 not long after Austin turned heel and the whole event being ruined by some clown’s sign that read ‘Astin Sold Out’ – that is worth an induction of its own…

  5. Sean Bateman says:

    A Double Induction to celebrate fifteen years of the Crap! Kudos

  6. John C says:

    Marc Mero also loved when Otto Preminger played Mr. Freeze on the Batman tv show since he said, “Wild, wild” about every two seconds he was on screen.

  7. Sean says:

    While you’re talking about UK slang I should point out that ‘fanny’ means vagina in the UK. Which gives a whole new meaning to your ‘A-Train understandably wasn’t about to pucker up to Fatu’s fanny’

  8. Jerm says:

    What a WILD induction. That was seriously brilliant.

  9. Erich says:

    I still remember how shocked I was to find out that Johnny B. Badd wasn’t a gay black man, but was instead a straight white man.

  10. Doc 902714 says:

    Nice segue into the second part of the induction “something iffy like “Wildman” Marc Mero”

  11. Lee W says:

    I dare say the only reason why Windham Rotunda as Husky Harris isn’t the worst wrestler I’ve seen in trunks in recent years was the “wonderful” sight of Matt Bloom’s hirsute figure back around this time

  12. Alfonzo Tyson says:

    Another example of a woman managing babyfaces: Sunny managing the induction-worthy LOD 2000.

  13. Mister Forth says:

    I have to say real shock Rikishi won. Also, I figured Mero’s favorite musician was Little Richard.

  14. Down With OPC says:

    I wonder if anyone ever thought that Adam West looks just like Little Richard.

  15. Arriba McIntyre says:

    This was like the Tur-Duck-en of inductions. Turduction?

  16. Thomas Moffatt says:

    Anyhow, any chance of Tony Dawson getting inducted?

  17. spinningtorturerack says:

    If you’re breaking into the british ppv’s No Mercy 1999 (uk version) deserves an induction! Or maybe just Tiger Ali Singh, I swear the only time he is is seen for a good year or two is on those ppv’s anyway!

    • Jimbolian says:

      As a consolation, the Tiger Ali Singh-led Lo Down has been inducted…but you can only see it if you get the archives!

      MWUHAHAHAHA! MWUHAHAHAHA!!!! MWUHAHAHAHA!!!! MWUHAH–*cough* *cough* I’ll make my way out.

    • Alfonzo Tyson says:

      Tiger Ali Singh is most certainly worthy of an induction of his own. He was a Million Dollar Man rip-off with a Virgil rip-off (Babu) and should be inducted just for that segment he had with one of the Godfather’s hos and the kielbasa.

      • Jimbolian says:

        In truth, if you watched Sunday Night Heat throughout 1999, there’s definitely some Wrestlecrap moments for sure, such as:

        – Vic Grimes (the guy who almost god damn broke New Jack’s neck in ECW in a botched spot) dressed up like Mordecai’s daddy
        – Droz pulling a page out of Perry Saturn’s book and embracing his new found love for cross dressing
        – Some guy impersonating the head of the Parents’ Television Council which was a year before Right To Censor debuted
        – Meat’s on-going saga with Pretty Mean Sisters (PMS, GET IT?!?)
        – Chaz’s on-going saga with Marianna and domestic abuse

  18. Stephen says:

    There probably is a ton of Wrestlecrap on our UK-only PPVs. You were right, Art, when you said nothing of consequence ever happened on them. I think Bulldog won a title once or something.

    Although I don’t want to offend, I’m not a fan of Art’s style. He relies WAY too heavily on referencing non-wrestling stuff for his comedy and most of the time, I just don’t find it funny; Batman 1966, The Simpsons, Stepford Wives, Jimi Hendrix and it isn’t limited to this induction.

  19. Anonymous says:

    Entertaining stuff.

    … er, the induction, not the match lol.

  20. Barry says:

    The UK PPVs were usually dire.

    I went to Insurrextion 2003, I was glad when it was over. The Smackdown house show I went to a few months later was a lot better.

  21. The Bad Ry says:

    Someone in Stanford must be watching the site, because now we are going to get a second Kiss My Arse match.

  22. Zigglypuff says:

    I can’t frickin’ believe they’re gonna try this *again*. Even with the talent involved, it’ll probably be about as entertaining.

  23. McMahon Did 7/11 says:

    Can we just take a moment to reflect on how bad of a name “Insurrextion” is? It’s just so… I guess the word would be cheap. It sounds like the kind of name a nothing little garbage wrestling federation would use. Insurrection would be an okay name, albeit not great, but the “X” instead of the “C” just makes it sound like they were trying so hard to make it hip and edgy. Granted, there were some cheesy names from In Your House, but some of them were so ridiculous that they’re just funny. (Season’s Beatings, Good Friends/Better Enemies, Rage in the Cage… these all sound like a parody, not an actual thing.) Insurrextion is just embarrassingly bad.

  24. Caveman says:

    Huh, whaddaya know. Now that you mention it, “Wild” “Savage”. Vince really did want to make them the new Macho Man and Elizabeth (or the way he perceived them to be) back then.

    Nice job on sneaking a stealth induction within an induction.

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