RD Reynolds is CM Punk.
No, the “Real Deal” is not a tattooed firebrand, doling out more potshots than the Friar’s Club. Nor is he particularly what you’d call an “indy darling”, in spite of his involvement in the legendary Mike Samples car incident.
RD’s similiarity to the WWE Champion stems from this commonality: they speak for a group of folks who are passionate in their taste, eclectic as it may be.
In 2011, Punk’s series of “Pipe Bomb” tirades gave voice to fans tired of Vince McMahon’s paint-by-numbers, watered down approach to the product, and his bitter tongue galvanized those vocal masses. They believed again, especially after Punk showed that he believed.
RD, following that pattern, gave us voice as well.
I discovered WrestleCrap in September 2000. I was in eleventh grade, and had just gotten home from school on a Friday afternoon. Somebody had linked the site to the RSPW newsgroup, and my curiosity willed my finger into mouse-clicking my way onto his creation.
It took me minutes to fully comprehend the wondrous horrors before me. At the time, WrestleCrap had every single induction posted at once, so I’d truly stumbled upon wrestling’s Hall of Shame.
Visions of Repo Man and Dean Douglas and Oz and El Gigante danced before my eyes; a Roman orgy of sports entertainment schlock on display like the crew of a traveling freak show.
And here’s RD Reynolds, armed with a top hat and cane, directing us in his squeaky midwestern drawl. Watch him point at the Doomsday Cage, and listen to his disbelieving dissection of the Sumo Monster Truck match.
RD, much like CM Punk, connected a considerable group of people with a common thread. In this case, it was our love of unintentional comedy.
Granted, Reynolds did not invent the concept. The true masters of mocking what wasn’t meant to be mocked are David Letterman (when he gave a damn) and Mystery Science Theater 3000. But none of them have tackled professional wrestling’s dips and duds quite like RD has done for over a decade.
Later mediums like Matthew Gregg’s Botchamania, Wrestling Gone Wrong, and others of the ilk celebrate wrestling’s foul-ups; be they bloopers, bad ideas, or anything that can be construed as an affront to what wrestling is ‘supposed’ to be.
When Reynolds posted inductions for the likes of IRS, Bastion Booger, Aldo Montoya, and the immortal Ding Dongs, we all laughed. We showed our like-minded friends, accompanied by giggles of, “Hey, remember how stupid THIS was?!”
We must love stupidity if Reynolds has been able to pen three books on the notion.
I joined this site 2 years ago at the offering of Reynolds, who enjoyed a series of satirical, Onion-style articles I’d written for a self-made NFL fansite. That’s how “Headlies” was born. And since my baptism into the holy grail of squared circle silliness, I’ve had to create “crap” just as much as revel in it.
Turns out, “crap” is as flexible as Melina’s groin muscles, and has been enjoyed by a variety of men with John Morrison’s blessing. But seriously, the idea of what is “crap” can take many paths.
Repo Man is “crap” because it’s a silly idea; a man (once a snarling ruffian named Demolition Smash), dress him as a bondage-masked car thief, have him laugh maniacally like The Riddler loaded with helium, and let the magic begin. Bad gimmick as it was, the over-the-top nature of Repo Man provides many laughs for those who like a good belly chortle.
Then there’s “crap” like WWE’s exploitation of the deceased Eddie Guerrero. In what was no doubt RD’s least funniest induction, the trivializing of a fallen wrestler as a ratings grab and story device enraged many fans who knew Guerrero to above this fetid fray.
It may seem weird to juxtapose the image of Eddie’s immolated low rider with Repo Man stealing a child’s bike, but if WrestleCrap were a museum, both of them belong behind velvet ropes.
The idea of “crap” evolved, and has become a catch-all for anything in wrestling that is harebraned, be it light-hearted or heavy-footed.
Like today. We await the debut of Fandango, a ballroom dancer who has come to conquer WWE the way country singer Jeff Jarrett and race car driver Bob Holly did two decades ago. Chances are, Mr. Reynolds could set a template for Fandango’s induction, let it sit in the drawer, and never have to throw it away on account of “Man, Fandango sure worked out better than we thought!”
Then there’s “crap” that irritates us, like the realization that WWE left Zack Ryder off of their Twitter “most followed” factoid, when he should have been fifth place by a wide margin. It’s a indictment of the company’s need to squelch the organic rise of a zealous young man, and speaks volumes to how oblivious they are to what bullies they come off as (ironically, when they rub your nose in their charity works).
WrestleCrap has served as a barometer of our disgust and taste for as long as RD Reynolds has been willing to match our sensibilities in induction form. Since early 2000, he’s had his fingers on that pulse, and it continues into 2013 and beyond.
As WrestleCrap is redesigned into a more “daily” destination, the flurry of crap, both the merry and the maddening, will hit the fan with quicker slings and flings.
Along with RD, WrestleCrap has an impressive cast that will be there to bring you the worst in wrestling, and satiate the general need for laughter in this sometimes cold world, and make a somewhat degenerative business fun in a way we know how to make it fun.
With equal parts satire, parody, scrutiny, and lunacy, this site is stronger than ever, and will continue to pick up steam as the days, months, and years go on.
WrestleCrap is evolving, and we’re glad to have you all on board with the madness.
(Follow Justin Henry on Twitter for his latest rantings, as well as live PPV and Monday Night Raw coverage!)