I knew it was going to happen.
I just knew it.
It was never in question, and that, more than anything, made me dread it all the more.
Before the Gooker voting even started, I knew that Michael Cole was going to “win”, which meant I was going to lose. And no, I didn’t make a mistake in not putting quotation marks around the word lose there.
For it is a loss.
It’s a loss of time I shall ne’er regain, a loss of brain cells I’ve permantly said goodbye to, a loss of energy that I could have been used doing something to better the world.
I mean, look at this:
This is what the Gooker has reduced me to this year, researching an entire year, 12 months, three-hundred and sixty five freakin’ days, of Michael Cole.
And now, NOW, I have to distill that all down into one induction.
I thought about copping out. I really did. I thought about saying the poll was hacked or that Cole couldn’t be eligible due to the fact that the storyline was still ongoing (and honestly looks to never end) or that my fingers had fallen off and I was unable to write an induction by pecking at the keyboard with my nose. I seriously thought about all those things.
Well, except the nose typing bit. Because that’s just stupid.
But at the end of the day, I couldn’t do it. I knew I had to just dive headfirst into the stupidity of all things Michael Cole and just relive the agony.
Why? Because you watched it too, and you deserve that.
Like so many things that I’ve covered here, it started off innocently enough.
It started off with the Miz.
(And yes, I did purposely find the single stupidest picture of the guy I could find, if for no other reason than to show that his hairdo is exactly the same as The Red Rooster’s, which was also idiotic.)
So Cole, who was for years WWE’s lead babyface announcer, inexplicably began rooting for the guy.
He didn’t cheer for any other heels – just Miz.
No one really knew why, and no one knew why to the point that if you google “Michael Cole Miz” you will see such fascinating options for your browsing pleasure as, and don’t shoot the messenger because I am just quoting here, “Why is Michael Cole so GAY for the Miz?”
Thankfully, someone named “TheRock316” explained that it was because, and again, just quoting here, “Cole had sex with him and it was awesome.”
That there is the very definition of “too much information.”
The Miz thing was inexplicable enough, but that was just the beginning, as soon to be added inexplicably to his duties at ringside was to be the voice of the anonymous Raw GM. We’d get a computerized ding, followed by Cole stating, “And I quote”, and then whatever gibberish the GM wanted to put into play for that evening.
Remember all those months that we spent wondering who the GM was?
Remember how everyone was coming up with all kinds of cool scenarios as to who it could be?
And then remember how one week the computer just kinda vanished and was never heard from again?
Seriously, what the HELL was the point of all that?
Yeah, I don’t know either, dude.
BTW, I bet you would have made an awesome GM.
In fact, just that still image of you should appear on the Titantron everytime something makes no sense on Raw.
And yes, I realize that at least 45 minutes every Monday night would be spent looking at you, shrugging your shoulders, WWF gee-tar in tow.
Where was I?
Oh yeah, Michael Cole.
So soon enough he wasn’t just having awesome sex with the Miz, but he was engaged in constant bickering with his other announcers, namely Jerry Lawler. Despite weeks of being mocked and called a senile old man, Lawler did his best to simply ignore Cole.
But then something happened.
And that something was Lawler’s mother dying at the age of 90 on Valentine’s Day of 2011.
Look, I don’t care if Lawler was ok with it. Maybe he was, maybe he wasn’t. Truth be told, we’ll likely never know the truth because Lawler would likely never show his hand either way, especially not in a way that could jeopardize his employment.
My point here is simple: did we really need Lawler’s deceased mother brought into this?
What purpose did it serve other than to give the whole scenario a completely tasteless feel?
If you ever wondered why no one in the “real world” has any respect for this company, that right there would give you a pretty good idea.
And yeah, soon enough the match was set, with Lawler vs. Cole at WrestleMania. In agreeing to the match, Cole had two stipulations: 1) he could have his trainer, Jack Swagger, in his corner, and 2) Cole would get to pick the guest referee.
It didn’t take long for the internet to be buzzing that the referee was to be “Stone Cold” Steve Austin. Of course, this made no sense, as why on earth would Cole ever choose him?
Oh, and to the sliver of folks out there who have said that Cole was just doing his job through all this, just being a heel, and therefore should never have been even nominated for the Gooker yet alone won it, a moment of your time if I may.
The point of an announcer in wrestling is to promote the show, to make you want to see whatever it is you are watching. If you are out there saying that the women are awful, even if they are, what you are really saying to the folks watching at home, “Look at this stupid junk you’re watching! Don’t you have anything better to do?”
That’s the job of a goof on website like me.
It’s not the job of the number one announcer of the number one wrestling promotion in the world, a guy who two minutes later is trying to convince you to spend money on whatever worthless C-level PPV they are trying to sell you this Sunday.
And I am well, well aware that 95% of the stupidity Cole unleashes comes straight from Vince McMahon yelling at him through his earpiece.
That’s no excuse. In fact, it makes it even worse, because Vince of all people should know just how damaging it is to his company.
Anyway, back to Cole and his special referee. So he had one alright, and as the show took place in Texas…and Cole said he was a former WWE Champion…and a tough SOB…that could mean it was only one person:
Gotta give credit where it’s due: that there is the proper way to do a swerve.
Of course, I could just be saying that because an incredible interview followed, as JBL explained that he hated bullies.
For the record, shower security footage and Blue Meanies everywhere disagree with such a statement.
So Cole hands the Special Referee Contract to JBL to sign, and….
…the glass breaks, and out comes Austin.
I talked above about how tasteless this company is, and obviously we all (myself included) pretty much hated all things Michael Cole in 2011, but…but…but this one image gives me a reminder as to why I still love wrestling.
I mean, this seriously may be my favorite image I’ve ever had on the site.
Look at Stone Cold, complete bad ass, fans cheering.
Look at JBL, being a great heel, totally appalled at what is taking place.
Most importantly, look at that sign to the left.
So an argument ensues, and even Ray Charles could see what was coming.
Yep, it’s a stunner, which JBL sells like a champ.
In fact, it was so fantastic, that I think the new rule should be that if you’re going to take a Stunner, you must wear a hat so it can fly in the air then land on your face.
And that contract that JBL was going to sign?
Yep, it wound up signed by Stone Cold.
Which he followed up by giving Cole a beer bath, making him look like a total idiot.
You know what? The build to this, tasteless comments about Lawler aside, has been pretty tremendous.
Maybe we were wrong to vote this for the Gooker.
So Cole shows up the next week in his custom made plexiglass cubicle which he dubs the COLE MINE.
I really hope that WWE had to write a check to Vince Russo for stealing his Popemobile idea back in the dying days of WCW.
The Cole Mine (and Cole’s fans, whom he dubbed the COLE MINERS) wasn’t the only thing to show up, though, as soon we had Lawler’s real life son…
Now you younger Crappers may not remember him, but he was in a tag team called Too Cool as Grand Master Sexay. Despite being on Raw a gazillion times, Lawler never mentioned that Christopher was his offspring, a fact that Christopher was out here ranting and raving about.
And you know what?
This was pretty good, a feeling of legit heat as Christopher slapped his “Daddy” around as Cole laughed on from ringside.
And then we got the return of Jim Ross, who Cole had replaced on Raw.
Again, this was good, as Cole and Ross went at it verbally…
…and then Swagger jumped JR from behind and laid him out.
Soon everyone wanted to see Cole destroyed.
And the week before Mania, Cole got even more heat on Lawler, with his “trainer”, Jack Swagger, smashing King’s face up against the Cole Mine while the trash talking continued.
Again, I say it: Lawler’s mother aside, everything building up to the Mania match has been good to fantastic.
And the Mania match itself?
Well, that started out ok, with Cole coming out dressed in a fantastically absurd wrestling outfit, flexing his muscles, the whole nine yards.
Of course, when Lawler comes out…
…Cole runs and hides in the Cole Mine. However, this provides little refuge as Lawler reaches in, grabs Cole, and…
…smashes Cole’s face against the glass.
The first time I ever saw this, I laughed.
But they did it over and over throughout the year, to the point that they did it so many times I never laughed at it again.
That is, until I saw this fantastic GIF…
…posted over at the F4WBoard.
Mad props to you, Panda Powers.
This is the animated GIF of the year.
The match starts as it should, with Lawler pummeling Cole. It isn’t long, though, before Swagger jumps Lawler from behind and Cole starts beating on Lawler.
And then Cole beats on Lawler.
And beats on Lawler.
And beats on him some more.
Then he beats on him and beats on him and beats on him and beats on him.
Seriously, I swear I’d seen the likes of Jake “The Milkman” Milliman get in more offense in a match than this.
Not sure who made the call to have this match go so long, but it was a real bad idea.
Finally, though, justice prevails, and Austin stunners Swagger, and Cole taps to a Lawler ankle lock.
All is right with the world.
Except the GM dings in and awards the match to Cole due to Austin being a biased referee.
I could complain here, but I can’t, as Lawler vs. Bret at SummerSlam 93 is one of my favorite matches ever and had a pretty similar ending.
So yeah, this wasn’t horrible either.
And had things ended there?
This guy wouldn’t have won the Gooker.
But it didn’t end there.
It continued on and on and on throughout the rest of the year, with Cole never really getting shut up for good.
And then we had Jim Ross doing matches, and that, friends, was a horrible idea.
At Extreme Rules, we got a Country Whippin’ Match pitting Cole and Swagger versus Cole and Ross, in which Cole came to the ring in bubble wrap.
You know, I remember the last time a WWE performer showed up on PPV in bubble wrap.
It was a lot better.
And with good ol’ JR was in the ring…oh man…God bless the guy and all, he’s a great announcer, but he looked like a total buffoon trying to “wrestle”.
And you know, maybe that was the idea all along with Cole – to make Ross look like an idiot.
I mean, seriously, Cole was “knighted” in a goofball ceremony in England, and somehow wound up with a foot fungus.
Why did he have a foot fungus, you ask?
So Ross would have to kiss his foot, of course.
To be fair, it did lead to a Kiss My Foot Match (another one they stole out of the Lawler-Bret feud), and Cole lost that.
But by the next night, Cole was back on Raw doing horrible commentary and burying the roster and the show in general.
And when I say “burying the roster”, I mean it. When he wasn’t talking about how boring the women were, he was talking about how the only reason Kelly Kelly looked good in magazines was due to heavy Photoshopping.
I’m not the biggest Kelly Kelly fan in the world, but this woman is supposed to be your hottest sex symbol, and you’re telling people that she’s actual just fake pretty?
Still, she got off easier than Cole’s favorite target, the guy who was buried so far beneath the earth I’m surprised he didn’t pop out in China: Daniel Bryan.
Despite winning Money in the Bank and therefore theoretically being the next WrestleMania main eventer, Cole made this guy look like the biggest loser on the planet. And it didn’t matter if Bryan was a face or a heel, Cole made sure to point out just how much of a geek he was.
In fact, “geek” may have been the nicest thing he called him.
Over the course of twelve months, he also dubbed him boring, clumsy, a nerd, a goof, a dweeb, and was not only a virgin, but in fact had never even had a girlfriend.
This despite a storyline in which Bryan was with Gail Kim while the Bellas were chasing him.
A storyline that was on Raw.
Raw is, you will note, a show on which Cole does commentary.
Let’s see, what else sucked in the year of Cole sucking?
How about stupidity in which he did a dance contest with Vickie Guerrero?
Or when he played dress up and became Hunter?
Show of hands for everyone who remembers him commentating a match with a bag on his head back when Cody was doing that stupid gimmick?
And who could forget that classic Sheamus-Heath Slater encounter in whichCole explained it was like watching Ronald McDonald versus Wendy?
Or when he got to yuck it up on air byannouncing that Jerry Lawler was having anal bleeding (which apparently had Vince and cronie Kevin Dunn in stitches)?
And of course, who could ever blot from their memories the atrocity of the Michael Cole Challenge?
Ah, thought I’d leave THIS out, did ya?
So it went something like this. Cole challenged Ross to take him on in a three-stage battle that he designed the following week on Raw.
The first week it was supposed to happen, it didn’t.
The second week, same story.
I don’t know if it was three or four weeks later, but it finally did, and yep, it was horrible.
We got the two having such battles as an arm wrestling contest…
…a weigh in (apparently that’s a contest now)…
…and yet ANOTHER dance competition.
So now we not only get Cole dancing horribly…
…but we get Ross doing it as well.
If the weight thing didn’t get your “Vince Humiliates JR” senses tingling, I am willing to bet that animated GIF to your left did the trick.
As bad as that was, though, it was ***** entertainment compared to the Cole-Ross Rap Battle.
Yes, you heard that right.
And while Cole was horrific…
It was so awful that Jim Ross actually apologized for it on his Twitter, saying it was the “the worst segment of TV ever.”
While I’m not sure I’d go quite that far, one thing I definitely won’t argue is that All Things Michael Cole deserved the 2011 Gooker Award.
Let’s just all hope he doesn’t repeat.
Not sure I can handle doing another induction like this one!