If wrestling has taught me anything, it’s that being a second generation star isn’t always a guarantee of success. Sure, we can all name a lot of guys who were better than their old men – Bret Hart, Randy Orton, Randy Savage all spring immediately to mind. But there’s seemingly an equal list of goofs that shouldn’t have ever laced up their boots.
Like, oh I don’t know…
FunFact (that will likely cause you to drive off a cliff): did you know that David Flair and Stacy Keibler were apparently an item…in REAL LIFE? Like, you know, doing it and stuff? Surely that has to be some ridiculous urban legend with no basis in the realm of truth, right?
Oh baloney, I bet you do know. Fess up, AJ!
(Wait, no – you crazy kids were never in the company at the same time. My bad.)
Anyhoo, today’s induction involves another second generation wrestler. And while he was worlds ahead of say, Chris Von Erich, he wasn’t in the same universe as Curt Hennig.
Also, I can no longer type or say the word “universe” without hearing “WWE” in front of it. I bet many of you are in the exact same boat. Vince McMahon has gotten away with a lot of actual crimes in his day (supposedly, allegedly), but how a grand jury has never indicted him for that, I’ll never know.
The man pictured above would be Stan “The Man” Stasiak. If for no reason other than the passing of time, there’s a good chance many of you have never even heard of him. And to be fair, his heyday, during the 1970s, is before even I started watching wrestling, and as we all know, I’m like 150 years old. Most of you are at least a wee bit younger.
Eh, maybe some of you.
So anyway, on December 1, 1973, Stasiak would defeat Pedro Morales for the WWWF (which would transition to WWF then to WWE) World Heavyweight Championship. At the time, lengthy title reigns were the norm; Morales held the belt for three straight years, and prior to that, Bruno Sammartino was champion for nearly eight. Stasiak, though, wouldn’t have such fortune, holding the belt for just over a week prior to dropping it back to Bruno. Stan was the epitome of a “transitional” champion, much as the Iron Sheik would bridge the gap between Bob Backlund and Hulk Hogan roughly a decade later.
Still, holding the World Championship in Vince McMahon Sr.’s playground was nothing to scoff at, and it led his son Shawn to decide to attempt to follow in his footsteps.
How he was going to do so sporting a boner in his matches I’ll never know.
Seriously – Shawn Stasiak came into the WWF as MEAT, a sex slave of sorts for the catty trio known as the Pretty Mean Sisters, or PMS. Unfortunately, he wouldn’t win a lot of matches because he’d wear himself out prior to those bouts by giving his lady friends unlimited “action”.
Let all that sink in for a moment.
Someone thought “packaging” a former world champion’s kid in a manner such as this was a good idea. Spoiler alert: it wasn’t. Amazingly, it was somehow even dumber than I am making it sound. And yes, naturally it wound up as an induction on this here site many years ago (yep, in the archives, get to clicking, support the site, all that jazz).
Following a bizarre backstage incident in which he was caught audio recording other WWF superstars (I dunno the details, pester Dave I guess if you want to know more), Stasiak would leave the WWF and head over to WCW. There he would be given a Mr. Perfect knock off character known as Perfect-Shawn (woof) and team up with other young guys on the roster such as Sean O’Haire and Chuck Palumbo.
For the record, I’ve been staring at that image above for like 10 minutes and have zero recollection of this team whatsoever. I am too lazy to Google to try to find out why they were known as “The Perfect Event.”
No, wait – let me correct that. It’s not that I lack the energy to find out how WCW came up with the stupidest name for a tag team of all time, it’s that I don’t care why they did. I mean really, has there ever been a team with a dumber moniker? Give me your answers in the comments section below, and if anyone convinces me of a tag team with a worse name, I’ll give them free archive access.
So anyway, WCW dies and Vince picks up the scraps such as poor Shawn for the much maligned Invasion angle.
You know, the one where Steve Austin was the torchbearer for WCW.
Sigh…I’ve written the Gooker winning induction for that.
I’ve written about it in two books, both the original Death of WCW and the 10th Anniversary Edition.
I’ve spent a ton of hours, a good chunk of my life, writing about this disaster, examining it from various angles, and dissecting it in every manner possible. And it’s all led me to one conclusion: I am a total idiot.
Why on earth did I waste all that precious time?
Why didn’t I just put a picture of Steve Austin in a WCW shirt and call it a day?
Could it really get any more idiotic than that?
While the answer is an emphatic “NO!”, it did lead to a lot of little spin-off atrocities, such as the one featured here today, starring your friend and mine, Shawn Stasiak. He was part of the Alliance (the joint effort of WCW and ECW in an attempt to overthrow the WWF), and was backstage trying to get into the good graces of Austin who was the head honcho of the group. Austin, being a student of the game, actually remembered that Stasiak’s dad was a champion. He questioned if Shawn would do the same.
Stasiak replied that he was going to do better than that – he was going to do something tonight that Austin would NEVER forget.
And then made a MEAN GUY FACE.
All that was missing was a “GRRRRRRRRR!!!!!’
And just what did Stasiak do that was so unforgettable?
He ran as fast as he could face first into an inanimate object.
A suit of armor, to be precise.
What, did you think I would make such a thing up?
Seriously, the dude came literally screaming at Kurt Angle, who simply side stepped him as he plowed into a freaking suit of armor. He then laid on the ground for a good two minutes while Angle and William Regal simply continued their conversation, completely oblivious to a man with possible brain damage wallowing at their feet.
Eventually, Stasiak is able to regain his feet and knows he’s in a heaping helping of trouble with Austin. So he hunts down Debra, Austin’s then wife and on-screen flunky, and quizzes her about if Stone Cold is actually, you know, upset with him. Debra explains that…
Holy cow is that an unflattering look for Debra. I always considered her a total smokeshow, but…eeeeek. That is right up there with the Bischoff shot on the front of Death of WCW for worst possible photo of a person ever.
Back to Stasiak, Debra explains that Austin is indeed furious. I guess someone else was as well, as amazingly running into a statue wasn’t a one-off gag for Shawn – it was the start of a new character for the poor guy.
So soon enough, he is getting doors literally slammed in his face and being made to look like an ever bigger buffoon than he ever had before.
Like when…you know…
Undaunted, Stasiak would attempt to do other Alliance members’ bidding to prove to Austin that he could be a valuable member.
MEMBER OF THE TEAM, pervs.
So we see him telling Booker T and Shane McMahon he would go to the ring and teach the Rock a lesson. As if. We get the match and…
…yeah, you know how that turns out, with Stasiak’s only offensive maneuver being a missed clothesline.
From there, it somehow got worse.
For you see, soon enough, Stasiak wasn’t only running headlong into inanimate objects or jobbing in seconds, he was unable to speak. Like, complete even the simplest of sentences. During the infamous Stone Cold Tribute Night on Raw it took the poor doofus over 32 takes to put his thoughts on the Rattlesnake into words.
So yes, now he wasn’t only a klutz, but a total moron as well.
Still, he was going to attempt to impress Austin, somehow, some way. One might surmise he would do so by noting that he was now in a relationship of some sort with Stacy Keibler (what is it with her being paired with second generation dorks?), but no no – he was instead going to do it by setting a trap for Austin’s number one nemesis, that being Angle. Stasiak concluded that since Angle was as obsessed with milk as Austin was with beer, he’d put a bucket of rancid milk atop a door!
And then…get this..when Angle walks through the door, he’ll be covered in the completely grody glop!
HA HA HA!
HO HO HO!!
HEE HEE HEE!!!
So he and Stacy hide behind a conveniently placed backdrop and wait for the gold medalist to arrive.
Of course it isn’t Angle that arrives, but rather Debra, who gets covered and proceeds to launch into a Grade A meltdown. Everyone should watch this and see how a pro wrestling freakout should occur. It’s just like that.
Debra is seriously one of the most underrated characters of the past twenty years. Oh how I love and miss her.
So Shawn and Stacy freak out and run for the hills, with Stasiak not appearing again on Raw for a few weeks. It wouldn’t be long, however, before we’d get the next evolution of the Stasiak character, this time during matches themselves.
Now…now…Stasiak was literally tripping over his own two feet, falling flat on his face as he attempts to spear his opponent (Spike Dudley) in the corner.
At least I think he tripped. Maybe he just had really bad depth perception?
Regardless, the insanity would continue as he took on Perry Saturn…
…and now he was unable to do a leap frog…after he had just done one. I don’t have a clue how that makes any sense whatsoever, but really nothing I am writing about tonight does so I guess it all goes with the territory.
Before long, Stasiak would vanish again. He would return months later as…
I know a lot of folks have glowing memories of this character, but trust me, it wasn’t much better than anything else the poor guy had done. I guess having the ability to rhyme random words together counts for something. Maybe? To be fair, I’m kinda in the same boat as Tommy Dreamer here.
The problem was when he got into the ring, he was still a clumsy idiot.
Seriously, on his first night as Planet Stasiak, he ran right into brass knux and was pinned in seconds! He’d wind up orbiting the lower mid card for a while before eventually getting out of wrestling entirely, focusing instead on a successful career as a chiropractor.
Good call, kid – the folks backstage in this business did you no favors!