Saturday, July 10, 2010

Meet the Shockmaster

Chris Sims accurately describes the Shockmaster's introduction as the greatest introduction of a wrestler ever. Wikipedia explains:

After departing from the WWF, Ottman would find himself the center of the most embarrassing moment in wrestling history. World Championship Wrestling (WCW) had recently signed Ottman, and he was to make his debut in a match alongside Sting, Dustin Rhodes, and Davey Boy Smith. He would be their mystery partner in the upcoming eight-man tag match against the heel team composed of Sid Vicious, Big Van Vader, and Harlem Heat at Fall Brawl.

On "A Flair for the Gold", (an interview segment hosted by Ric Flair) in front of a live audience at Clash of the Champions XXIV, Sting and Smith were confronted by Sid and Harlem Heat, demanding to know the identity of their new partner. Sting exclaimed , "All I can say is, he is going to "shock" the world, because he is none other than... The Shockmaster!!" The camera zoomed in on a particular section of the set where two torches set off a small pyrotechnics explosion in front of a sheetrock wall. Ottman was supposed to make a dramatic entrance by crashing through the wall. His new costume consisted of a Star Wars Stormtrooper helmet painted silver and covered in glitter, a pair of jeans, and a long black vest. Instead, in perhaps the most humiliating moment in wrestling history, Ottman tripped over a piece of lumber that was framing the set, causing his helmet to fall off and slide across the floor. As he scrambled to put the helmet back on and get to his feet, Flair audibly exclaimed "Oh, God!". Ottman stood menacingly for a moment in an attempt to salvage the disaster, during which Smith could be heard saying that he "fell flat on his fucking arse!". Dusty Rhodes later revealed on an episode of WWE 24/7's Legends of Wrestling that the piece of lumber previously wasn't there during a successful practice run and it was later put there by David Crockett without informing Ottman.

Ottman walked up to Sid and Harlem Heat, all of whom were visibly struggling to contain their laughter. The interview, which was actually voiced by Ole Anderson, only got worse as Anderson started giggling at the beginning and mistakenly called Sid 'Stid' at one stage. Despite zero crowd reaction and leaving the announcers speechless, WCW decided to continue with the feud.

World Wrestling Entertainment, which now owns all rights to WCW and its video library, has described The Shockmaster's debut as "one of the most unintentionally funny moments in sports-entertainment history," and "a debacle many still consider one of the worst gaffs in the history of sports-entertainment." While Ottman was displeased with the turn of events, he now finds humor in the incident.
And speaking of Chris Sims's encyclopedic knowledge of impossible to believe characters, meet Spider-Man foe Banjo, "a super-powered hillbilly mutated by radioactive waste."

*Buy Stormtrooper helmets at Amazon.