You ever hear this one:
“Vince Russo takes CREDIT for everything that was successful and doesn’t take RESPONSIBILTY for anything that was a failure.”
Ever heard that? I have over ONE MILLION TIMES. And, you know why people say that? Simply, because that’s what they WANT to believe.
The amazing and scary truth is that to this day people actually believe that I am the SAME CHARACTER I played on TV. The brash New Yawk “STEREOTYPE” that everybody outside the Big Apple LOVED TO HATE.
Well, I hate to burst your bubble, but I’m not that guy. And, the truth is I always give credit where credit is due.
I actually not only enjoy, but love putting others over. And, with that—I have absolutely ZERO PROBLEM taking large, steaming poop emojis on some of my past ideas.
Yes, “Religious” Dustin Runnels SUCKED and YES, it was MY IDEA.
As I told you in an earlier column, the “Goldust” character was yanked out from underneath the feet of both Dustin and I. We had no say-so in the matter when everybody from marketing, to sales, to the network got cold feet as it pertained to the character no matter how many times we told them he was playing off the homophobic fear of others.
My heart bled for Dustin. He had crafted the character BEAUTIFULLY and he was over—WAY OVER. No doubt in my mind that Dustin was well on his way to one day becoming the WWE World Heavyweight Champion. But, unfortunately… that was just never going to happen.
Now, if you know Dustin Runnels, you LOVE Dustin Runnels. He’s just that kind of guy with that kind of appeal. I desperately was trying to come up with something else for Dustin, but unfortunately, whatever we did was just going to pale in comparison to the “Artist Known as Goldust.”
Now, when I say desperation, I mean DESPERATION. I’ll never forget this little ditty throughout my remaining time on this earth.
One day, as we were—again DESPERATELY—trying to come up with a new gimmick for Dustin, he called me and pitched an idea. Here’s what he said, verbatim:
“Vince, I’m willing to get breast implants if that will help with my character.”
YES—I said BREAST IMPLANTS. Now, I’m sure if he would have thought this through that this particular conversation between the both of us would have NEVER taken place, but again, I reveal it to you so you understand entirely the level of DESPERATION that we were at.
Now, if you know my writing style, you know that I try to keep everything as “reality” based as possible. At the time, Dustin’s Christianity had become an important part of his life. Dealing with some personal issues, Dustin had turned to God to get the strength he needed to get through. So, with really nowhere else to go—we carried that through on television.
Where was it going, you ask? I have absolutely no idea. The plan was to just organically let it play out and see where the chips fall. But, man, not even Dustin’s prayers could have helped this one. It failed and it failed BADLY. It was not only such a force, but so far off from the “Goldust” character that NOBODY was buying it.
I tried, man, that’s all I can say. I tried.