I just read the original article written about “Pierre the Hardcore Reindeer” by Art O’Donnell, and, MAN AL—there’s A LOT you didn’t FREAKIN’ GET!
You will hear me say this all the time; wrestling marks have 100% convinced themselves that professional wrestling is indeed 100% REAL.
That’s why both yours truly and “Pierre the Hardcore Reindeer” are so adamantly hated in those circles. To that audience, if it’s not WRESTLING but rather ENTERTAINMENT—it’s KILLING THE BUSINESS. Meanwhile, twenty minute choreographed matches, using the same moves over and over—not selling a one, by the way—where you know the outcome before the match even starts—that’s what’s—putting LIFE in the BUSINESS?!
As a writer, when you have the opportunity to work with a talent like Al Snow—that is a GIFT. Rarely do you come across professionals like Al—wrestling, entertainment, Al Snow just GETS IT. He understands every aspect of the business and especially what puts ARSES in SEATS, because contrary to what anybody else will tell you, the wrestling business is still about making $$$.
Al began making a name for himself because he was known around the scene as a great “worker”. And, he was. In the ring Al was eons ahead of his time, and while the WWE tried to showcase his talents early on, “Avatar” and “Leif Cassidy” just weren’t cutting it.
So Al went to ECW where he re-invented himself. He introduced a mannequin head to the act and the rest was HISTORY. I can clearly remember watching an ECW clip where the rambunctious fans were filling the ring with styrofoam heads, which lead me to STRONGLY CONVINCE Vince McMahon that we had to bring this guy back.
That second go round with Al was perhaps the most enjoyment I ever had working with any talent. Al could get ANYTHING OVER—ANY THING—from a mannequin head to a STUFFED DEER’S HEAD. There were no limitations—he was brilliant—a creative GENIUS and hysterically funny.
So, with “Head” maybe running its course a bit, I challenged Al to come up with something else.
Now, unlike many other talents would have, Al didn’t balk at my suggestion once. It was a CHALLENGE to him because he was a professional performer.
Next thing I know, Al—NOT ME—comes back with this deer head that he got from God knows where. I think he mentioned finding it at an antique shop, or something. Almost immediately, and with little direction, Al starts rifting with this stuffed deer head. Man, I remember this so vividly because Al had me in TEARS. Not a surprise that Al makes money doing stand-up comedy today.
So yeah, ART—Pierre was OVER. Al was OVER. As the guy writing this @!#$%^&, I can tell you that the NUMBERS WERE OVER.
Making an inanimate object come to life is not an easy task. Don’t believe me—maybe you should try it sometime—on LIVE TV—with MILLIONS of people watching. And, think about the risk involved. It’s either gonna be OVER, or it AIN’T. And, if it AIN’T… Al’s back at ECW.
So here’s some advice: If you’re going to be a “normal” wrestling fan, then you have to have some level of a sense of humor. If you don’t, you will be left heartbroken when that dreaded day comes where you find out that the MATCHES ARE FAKE!