JP Prag & James Thomlison
Hidden Highlights 10.08.2006: Issue #58 [REPOST]
Hello everyone who can’t believe how quickly these months have gone by, and welcome back to Hidden Highlights!!
Hidden Highlight (n) – a small, hardly noticeable point that makes a big, positive difference. This could be anything from a wrestler putting extra emphasis into his moves to make it believable to a person in the background reacting while not the focus to the cameraman shaking the picture to create an effect. There are just so many unsung heroes of wrestling that it is impossible to cover them all.
Every week we take the top 3 Hidden Highlights from the biggest shows on television (RAW, ECW of SciFi, iMPACT, SmackDown!, and a PPV or television special if there is one). Plus we turn to you, the readers, to let us know all the Hidden Highlights you saw this, last, or any week in history. On top of all that, we explore the other issues that prove why this is the most positive article in the IWC.
And who is this mysterious we, you ask?
Why none other than JP Prag and James “JT” Thomlison (who got back into the old driver’s seat for a special edition of ByteThis!)!
We bring you Hidden Highlights with one goal in mind: to appreciate all those little things that make a huge difference. JT?
JT: Lions football and a PPV today? One that you’re covering no less??? Oh yes, today is definitely a good day.
JP: I’m TIVOing the Patriots game so I can go look at eight open houses. That’s right kids, JP is going to become a home owner! But before that, on with the Hidden Highlights!
Hidden Highlights for WWE RAW: Monday, October 2, 2006 by JP
JP: Now I’m not sure in the least how DX would be able to strip the Spirit Squad of their titles. They weren’t really in charge! They didn’t win a “Authority Figure” on a pole match. Ah well, it gave the Spirit Squad something embarrassing to do, and brings about our first Hidden Highlight!
(3) Oh that’s too funny:
Now while the Spirit Squad being in cheerleader outfits doesn’t exactly make me fall off the couch laughing (especially because the setup was sooooooooooo long, drawn out, and obvious), that doesn’t mean their co-workers don’t get a kick out of it. This one may be a bit to the in-your-face side, but Lillian Garcia could absolutely not keep herself from laughing while announcing the Spirit Squad. So yes, at least someone was very amused, and I’m always glad to see people breaking kayfabe a little and letting their true feelings through.
(2) Pouring on the pain:
Elsewhere in the evening, artificially suspended Randy Orton continued his drug induced push by defeating my main man on RAW Carlito. During the match, Orton was able to take a flying attack by Carlito and turn it into a nice keylock on the arm he had been working on all match. But not only did he pour on the pain in the lock, but Orton actually pushed Carlino’s finger’s backwards into the mat, thus inducing a little more punishment. Now, I don’t know if it was intentional or not, but I’m going to give Orton the benefit of the doubt because I wanted to say something nice about him. I also wanted to say nice things about Cryme Tyme, Chris Masters, and Eric Bischoff, but none of them did anything that column related.
(1) Who’s crazy now?:
Also in the evening, the tournament for the Women’s Championship continued as Victoria took on Mickie James in a battle of Hidden Highlight Diva supremacy. Both of these lovely ladies have been mentioned numerous times in these pages, so the question is who wins when they are in the ring? Well, I’m going to be giving these top kudos to… VICTORIA!! Early in the match, Mickie James pulled off a standing rollthrough monkey flip on Victoria. When Victoria regained herself, she pushed Mickie James and screamed “Are you crazy?!” This was great on so many levels. First, we know that <i>Victoria’s</i> character is crazy, so of course she would think others were crazy. But then we know that Mickie’s character is also crazy, so it’s funny that she would even have to ask that. And then Victoria went crazy at the end of the match anyway! Plus, it’s always great to listen to Victoria as she’s really into the story of the match and screaming things out in character. All around, Victoria, this Hidden Highlight kudos was for you.
JT: Yes, a very nice job by Victoria indeed. Now if I could just get a weekly Widow’s Peak, I would be in heaven! Vince, hire some female jobbers! And it amazes me that Randy Orton can fail the test like 17 times and still get victories, while Shelton – who I’ve never heard of him complaining – is stuck in jobber status (and that’s assuming he even makes it on TV).
Hidden Highlights for ECW on SciFi: Tuesday, October 3, 2006 by JP
JP: ECW continued the momentum from last week with another strong show with a couple of really good matches, including one that reminded me why I like Test way back when he was courting Stephanie. Unfortunately, Vince McMahon on ByteThis! said people are just tuning in to watch a stunt fest and don’t know the people’s names. I guess that’s why they chant “R-V-D”, “Test does steroids”, “Let’s go Punk”, and the like. Damn those stupid stunt loving bastards! Also, I like how Vince said that Eric Bischoff was trying to shift the blame of WCW closing to AOL-Time Warner, while then later shifting the blame of the XFL closing to NBC/UPN and “the media”. Hmmmmm… MeeThinks someone is a hypocrite. What? Oh yes, ECW!
(3) Paranoia, paranoia…:
During the opening contest of the night, the ECW original extremists Sandman and Sabu got set to take on the Big Show and Matt Striker. As Sabu was making his entrance, he did his normal finger point to the sky thing. As he was doing that, Sandman came over to do his pose, wanting to show the original ECW. But Sabu instantly flinched when the Sandman came near him, breaking his pose for a moment and tensing up to fight. I thought this was great because Sabu is a paranoid character that thinks everyone wants to beat him up. It also plays to the history between the two as the Sandman has hit Sabu over the head MANY times with his Singapore cane. It was only when the Sandman was completely posed did Sabu go back to his stance, but only very tentatively. Great work overall by Sabu.
(2) Help me!:
Later in the same match, the Sandman hit a “Heineken”-rana on Matt Striker. Although I’m quite sure he used to call it something else, the point is the move led to a pinning predicament on Striker. When Striker was down, I saw one of the simplest yet effective (and this smart) things ever: Striker actually waved the Big Show in to help him! Nice work by Striker to call for his help instead of just leaving it to chance.
(1) More paranoia:
In our previously mentioned main event, RVD and Test were in a contest that had a lot of unfriendly faces on the outside for RVD. Late into the match, RVD was able to get Test in a forward roll to a pin. Now normally when someone does this, they face forward to keep the pressure on. But not RVD; he instead turned his head to watch Paul Heyman and make sure he was not up to anything before the pin. Good work by RVD to keep his eyes on the most dangerous thing around him and not just going through the motions of a normal match.
JT: I actually caught that last one myself (I was watching in HH mode because I wasn’t sure if I had ECW or TNA). And you see people!? Matt Striker really *is* a walking Hidden Highlight? Do you see?
Hidden Highlights for TNA iMPACT: Thursday, October 5, 2006 by JT
JT: JT’s Note:* I live in Michigan. For those who don’t, the weather has been quite odd lately. Not *bad* weather, but it’s been cloudy and stormy for what seems like a month. I can recall maybe three or four clear skies days in that time (at least in my area). In fact, there was a STATE WIDE phone issue (both cell and residential) just a few days ago which anyone living here can attest to. At any rate, it continued to be a bundle of joy tonight as my Impact satellite feed (on TiVo from earlier) cut off at around the 30 minute mark due to a storm. Fortunately, I had already found five HH, which means I can in fact due my portion! Unfortunately, it’s only from the first half portion. And for those of you saying, “well, then how do you have an intro like that?”… I read the reports… something I HATE to do when I haven’t seen it, but no real choice in this matter.
Well, they’ve already got Kurt Angle into the intro, Team 3D gets a victory, neither Abyss, Joe, or Jarrett are happy campers, The Naturals scout things, LAX works for all of seventeen seconds, promo galore, and a six-man getting fired match! Wait… Eric Young? FUCK YOU DIRECTV FOR NOT LETTING ME SEE THIS TRAVESTY, Christian vies for mic time more than once!, and Joe still has the belt! …I couldn’t see it, but at least I had Christy Hemme for a while.
Still I muster on, for you guys!
(3) VIP treatment:
During the opening segment with JB standing around patiently while Cornette yelled a lot, there were actually <i>two</i> things I noticed which I thought were great. First, as JB watched on, Cornette – during his rant – said “The phone is ringing off the hook” (he even pointed). The thing is, the phone didn’t ring once the entire time he was talking. I loved this because of where I work. In my industry, you can have six lines lit up one minute, and then the next not get a call for thirty minutes. It was just so funny to me to see Cornette point at a phone and proclaim that things were insane when it wasn’t ringing once… I guess you have to be there. Perhaps that’s a personal HH. The second thing I noticed was that AFTER he interviewed Cornette, he said “Impact starts now”. Just thought this was a nice little touch to imply that everything we had seen up to that point was *backstage/insider* information that we were privileged enough to witness because we were loyal enough to tune in on time. Yes sir, JB had himself a good little opening segment!
(2) The good old live crowd:
At the end of the broadcast as Jarrett and Christian were doing their promo thing in the ring, for a brief far away camera angle, you could see underneath the bottom rope was the ref helping Christopher Daniels to the back in the background. You have to remember the live crowd, folks, and this was a nice little touch by the ref that sold his condition to the crowd, yet didn’t distract from the TV audience who was watching the two men in the ring.
And my satellite cut back in with six minutes to spare! Could I find a Hidden Highlight!? Well, of course I could silly billy’s, that’s our job!
(1) Look, purpose!:
During the tag match between Team 3D and MM/Kazarian, D-Von hit a sideslam on Maverick Matt. Kazarian was heading towards D-Von, but before addressing that, D-Von put his hands put his hands on Matt’s legs and rolled him out of the way, allowing him a clear path to meet Kazarian head on after he stood up. I liked this simply because you don’t see it very often. Usually the wrestler just rolls out of the way on his own. D-Von through in a nice little touch (which he probably didn’t even realize he was doing because he’s been doing this so long) that showed he was aware enough to know Kazarian was heading his way, yet still managed to get Matt out of the way so that he’d be able to focus 100% of Kazarian.
JP: And might I just thank you for not actually using all five of them, because really, that would just be sad.
Hidden Highlights for WWE SmackDown!: Friday, October 6, 2006 by JT
JT: Tag action to kick us off, Tatanka continues his losing streak, Finlay fights the King (I thought Booker cracked Finlay’s skull with that SICK Spinebuster), Dave and Lashley have a clash of respect, Jimmy Wang Yang remains winless, and in our main event, we have four guys who just don’t like each other, and JT got himself like 19 Spinebusters (probably favorite non finisher of all time)! How about JBL pulling out the fun fact that Lashley won his first High School State Wrestling Championship in the same building, or getting inducted into the same Hall of Fame (on the same day) as Barry Sanders? The man is on his shit… and that – naturally – makes him ….GOLD!
(Honorable Mention) : MISTAH…..wait? Just Mr.?
Anyone notice something about Kennedy this week? That’s right kids, when he ended his promo, he said “The future, is Mr. Kennedy”. No yelling, and more importantly, no SECOND *Kennedy*. This may be the first time I can recall where we only got one (unless it was interrupted by his opponent of course). I thought it showed focus by Kennedy; he is taking this match with Taker very seriously.
(3) Clothes! I promise it’s not colors!:
Michelle McCool cut a promo with her “A+ students”. What I noticed was that she had the name “Ms. McCool” on her shirt… in CURSIVE. Now, honestly, who cannot remember at least ONE time in their school days where you got to class on the first day, and sure enough, there, in cursive on the board, was the teacher’s name. Forget the fact that it was clearly printed on your schedule (at least mine), or the fact you had prior knowledge somehow who the teacher is (if you didn’t, how would you know where to go?). Just thought this was a great little touch by the wardrobe department to do something with the “teacher” which could take ANY of us back to those good old days.
(2) Oh no you didn’t just beat me:
At the end of the Lashley vs. Batista (thanks to a run in by Finlay), Finlay was attacking Batista. Then Booker ran down, and started attacking his opponent for No Mercy Lashley, right? Nope, he went after Finlay. This is a PERFECT for his character. You see, a face Booker would be focused on his Pay-Per-View match, not concerned with some meaningless match he had ten minutes earlier. But this is King Booker: Uber-Heel. The ego on him is the size of a small country, and it’s so fitting that said ego was so bruised by the loss to Finlay that he didn’t even care about his world title defense opponent. He was seeing red from the loss, and went directly for the cause of it.
(1) My name is Finlay, and I love to ….be calculative?:
During the King Booker vs. Finlay match, as the ref was distracted, Finlay used to the shillelagh and hit Booker in the back of the leg. I thought this was great for several reasons. A. For one, Booker is a large man with large legs, and attacking them is probably the easiest way to get him down. B. As soon as he fell down, Finlay grabbed the same leg to hook for the pin (and victory) – smart, veteran move by Finlay. C. Showed that he hasn’t forgotten he is a member of the King’s Court, as usually he blasts people in the head, and he chose a less threatening blow (despite it ultimately being the smarter move).
JP: I know I made fun of you in the last segment, but I still haven’t finished watching iMPACT yet, nonetheless SmackDown!. Thank you Massachusetts for having Columbus Day be a holiday! Monday will be the best catch up ever!
Reader Write-in Hidden Highlights
Hidden Highlights aren’t just for us to find and tell you about, but for you to spot and share with us. Don’t just sit there and stare, but be a more active, attentive, and engaged viewer. Appreciate all the hard work that goes into making the wrestling we have the privilege to watch and then let us know what you caught this and every week.
Since we ran out of room last issue, JT will start you off last week’s write-ins.
JT: We were pretty short on the emails last week. I blame two things… no, make that three. For one, the shock of Kurt Angle going to TNA has left people unable to type. Two, Steve Cook is in this issue, and people knew that, so…. And three, ….Steve Cook was in this issue… come on people! Either way, let’s see what we had because there was definitely some goodness. So, <B>*GENERAL WARNING*:</B>: some parts of the following Reader Write-in Hidden Highlights may be edited for grammar, spelling, and English translation…
Before we get into last week’s RAW, Sean A. starts us off with one from three weeks ago:
A pet peeve of mine in multi man matches with any more than three competitors is that once people pair off, nobody takes any notice of pin attempts by people in the other fights. And once again this was happening a lot during this match, with the exception of one man, the much maligned Johnny Nitro.
More or less every pin attempt, Nitro was turning his head and jumping towards it to break it up, really making himself look like the desperate heel champion he's supposed to be. Just a small thing, but it really helped me get into the match that bit more, and I have to say that other than his talking, I've really started to enjoy watching Nitro more as each week goes past.
JT: Nitro has been getting some serious love around here lately, and as I mentioned previously, he is starting to do the little things that make someone truly good. Is he the next HBK as some have suggested? I won’t go there. But he is definitely come into his own on RAW, and I look forward to see what he has in store. And ALSO before we get into this week’s RAW, Aaron L. had this, just for you JP and your comment from two weeks ago:
The shoe was actually off of Johnny's left foot. When Flair reversed the inside cradle, it came off of his foot. Johnny did actually toss it at Flair as Flair was bailing out right before the rest of the SS hit the ring.
JT: There ya go bud. Aaron did his homework. Surprisingly, we still have more from a RAW that didn’t occur thirteen days ago. Goodness! Scott B. saw something which is truly in HH fashion:
I picked it up right away and immediately thought of the HH column. I can't believe it wasn't mentioned. During the 18 Sep Raw "tribute/get well" segments for Vince McMahon, everyone made comments about Maria mistaking him for other McMahon’s, but she started by saying "Hi Vince, it me..." Vince???? No one call's Mr. McMahon by his first name, especially while he's in the heel persona. It's just another of those "clueless" segments that Maria has perfected. She's not in the ring very much, so you gotta give her props for playing the eye candy part (which she does well) when she's on the screen.
JT: Scott, not sure if you read it, but we actually had a HH some time ago about exactly that. When in heel mode, he is always “Mr. McMahon”, and when he’s a face, he is often “Vince”. GREAT little call by Maria to call him “Vince”, intentional or not. She does bring the greatness for the role she has. In an amazing turn of events, we have ANOTHER HH from RAW three weeks ago… (man, did anyone watch last week?) from Phil:
I was at the 09/18 Supershow in Montreal… just wanted to add a little bit to the following hidden highlight..
I'm watching WWE RAW right now, & I wanted to point out a highlight I saw. When Jonathan Coachman announced the 6-man tag team main event, what did you see? Triple H suddenly looks intensely at John Cena. Now, according to "wrestling physics," usually faces get along rather well. Past issues are mainly forgotten, and everyone acts like nothing is wrong. However, that one look still showed a side of Triple H's ego. Triple H was never able to defeat Cena for "his" title, and somewhere down inside, it still bothers him. That one look let you know that Triple H still has unresolved issues with Cena, and made you think if the two could truly cope together as a team (which was seen later in the night to be true). It was just a nice reminder of past storylines.
What you didn't see on camera (during the commercial break, was Triple-H picking up the title belt off the mat, and holding it for a while, longingly, and hesitating to give it back to Cena.. you could see a glimmer of "this is mine" in HHH..
JT: We’ve said it before. We’ll say it again. YOU CANNOT BEAT A LIVE SHOW. Man, I would have LOVED to see Trips holding the belt for like twenty seconds and staring at it before giving it back. It sounds like the combination of both HH means these guys are on their game and possibly building to something.
Speaking of on their game, George R. wants to show a non-wrestler, non-production-guy, non-…whatever, some love in ECW. Oh, and Holly as well:
The first HH, not really hidden, has to be Hardcore Holly not slowing down or even showing any reaction on his face after cutting his back on the table. That had to hurt!
The HH I enjoyed though was after Holly was bandaged and being led away from the ring. The doctor’s were with him and he was pulling away from them. At one point the older guy with the bow tie on the right of the screen said some things to Holly. I couldn’t get all of it but one thing I could get from lip reading was “Push me”. Right after that Holly did push him.
Even someone like Hardcore Holly is watching out for the non-wrestlers and the guy told him it was OK to be rough with him and he was ready for it.
JT: I’m always watching for the wrestlers/refs/etc people to be talking to each other, and I never even considered to think of watching the other guys like doctors. You sir, have improved my HH game. And let’s give some kudos to the side guy for taking one for the team! Moving on to SmackDown is Alex who thinks Rey can dish it just as well as he takes it:
A hidden highlight I noticed was that when Rey did his trademark springboard jump during his entrance, he was turned the other way. His back was shown towards the TV, but it seemed a message was sent as how Chavo and Vickie turned their back on Rey, and now Rey responds by turning his back on them.
JT: Not sure what to say here. That is just flat out good Hidden Highlights thinking right there people. Alex clearly gets it. I’m glad that in the onslaught of the Guerreros/Mysterio angle, some people are starting to see some of the positives (I’ve even read some praise around the site!). Up next is Yoni to give Sharmelle some love:
I don't know if Sharmell does this often, but during the Undertaker's entrance this week to battle King Booker, as Taker 'set' the lights to normal, you see Booker T standing in the corner of the ring, worried. Outside the ring at the same corner, Sharmell is standing, reaching with her hand and stroking Booker's right leg up and down to reassure him. I thought this was a great job by Sharmell, selling the Undertaker's aura, or whatever.
JT: I saw this, and while she doesn’t do that in particular all that often, she’s always doing little things “at Booker’s side” that are really great. In fact, this wasn’t as Hidden as usual, so hopefully a lot of you caught this! All Hail Queen Sharmelle! And speaking of SD! greatness, Christopher A. calls us out on something we’ve been ignoring:
Hey, got a highlight for you, and I'm a little surprised it hasn't come up in the column yet...
Have you noticed that JBL wears a blue shirt and blue tie every week? I've seen him in cream, navy, and charcoal suits, but it's always a blue shirt and tie underneath. Why? Well, Smackdown's color is blue, and JBL constantly calls himself, "Mr. Smackdown," so it only makes sense that he'd wear the colors!
JT: Well, I think this kind of happened by default. JP and myself both grew a little fond of the colors – be it clothes, something in the background, or something obvious – and we even joked to an extent about how bad we were about it. Subconsciously we both probably decided to avoid it, and we’ve done a good job of completely ignoring it. I like this Chris. It brings us back to the reality that colors in things do mean something, and maybe we were just giving a little too much love. It happens. We do have to give credit where credit is due though, and JBL always coming with the blue on blue under “whatever color” is a great example. You have brought us back Chris! Next week, be sure to look for the color Yellow in a Carlito by JP.
JP: What is that supposed to mea-
JT: Nothing! It means we’re not going to give ourselves limitations. If we find six straight HH from the same week six weeks in a row, so be it. You the readers, should do the same. Regular RC hits me out of nowhere with complete confusion:
Also, since I never saw Christopher Nowinski wrestler, what did he use to do that would have earned him a weekly space on HH?
JT: My only question here is (and yes, I DO read the column) when in the hell did someone say that Christopher Nowinski earned a weekly place in HH? And for that matter… who the hell has been giving him a regular HH every week? Am I seriously oblivious to a certain section of the column? Am I blind and impervious to such a thing? RC, you just threw me way off bud. As for Nowinski himself, he wrestled very briefly under an “I went to Harvard and you didn’t so I’m better than you” gimmick, but suffered a concussion, and has been kept on in “post-concussion-syndrome” form ever since.
JP: Ummm… JT, I think he was referring to the fact that I said Nowinski would be in this column all the time if he were wrestling. And why didn’t you go on this rant last week when I did it… you know… in the classic section?
JT: Oh that’s right! I had forgotten the little cameo from the Classic section. Forgive me RC, hope the information was helpful.
JP: Well, that’s nice and all… and did you actually tap OWW for your little factoids above, Mr. Editor?
JT: Believe it or not, that was from memory. Enough of this, Jerry wants to point out one we missed. Since I don’t know if it’s from RAW or the PPV, I’m putting it here! (I do believe the PPV though):
Here's one I think you missed from the Nitro vs. Hardy match. When Nitro was working on Jeff's leg to cramp him up he went to throw him into the ropes (as they usually do), but instead or running to them and back at Johnny, he stumbles and falls on the ropes showing that his leg was really hurt. Thus causing Johnny to go to him instead.
JT: Wow! Jeff Hardy with some love! This is a nice one, because bouncing immediately off the ropes and heading towards the opponent is probably the most “see-it-coming” move in the business. Dennett has something from Unforgiven:
Last week someone wrote in about the Cena salute from Unforgiven when he had his little finger down. I have an alternate theory as to Cena's reasons. He was catching crap all night from the Canadian fans, so I think the salute was an attempt to give them a little something back in a subtle fashion. The phrase "read between the lines" sums it all up. He was giving the Canadian fans the finger, but in a less obvious way so as not to offend too much. The look on his face backs this up, sort of an aggressive smirk about what he did to their hero.
I think this is more plausible than the scout salute, as the look on Cena's face suggests he wasn't being nice.
Just in case you aren't familiar, the two fingers either side of the bird are the lines.
JT: It may be late… and I may be tipsy… but like with RC I have no earthly idea what you’re talking about. However, due to the fact that I can “read between the lines” and see sort of what you’re saying, props will be given. He was definitely not the happiest of campers at Unforgiven, so this is probably dead on. If you give Cena nothing, give him that he can read a crowd and react to it. And that’s all from two weeks ago!
JP: Wow, it seemed like so much less, but I guess a little material for us is an insane amount for someone like Andy Clark. Anyway, now that we caught up to last week…
This week JP gets to pick our Reader Write-in Hidden Highlights of the week.
JP: And whatever “lack” there was last week has quickly been overcome. So, *GENERAL WARNING*:: some parts of the following Reader Write-in Hidden Highlights may be edited for grammar, spelling, and English translation…
Starting us off with this week is where we left off last week… or rather two weeks ago… or last section… or whatever Fixxer said:
I saw that you skipped last week's reader write-ins for HH. Good, because I have one that I'd like to add.
I don't know exactly how "hidden" this was, but during Bischoff's book promotion rant, Coach did a not-so-subtle mic-cutting gesture, and shortly thereafter, the music (I believe Edge's) came on, ending the segment. To me, this was a highlight because Coach was in charge, and thus he would have the authority to do so. If memory serves, Coach also didn't use that gesture until Bischoff said that there would be no Mr. McMahon, without Bischoff. If true, then that symbolizes that Coach was willing to allow Bischoff a lot of freedom, but when Bischoff denigrated Mr. McMahon (Coach's boss and idol), then the segment had to be killed. Great gesture and great timing.
JP: No, your memory is spot on. I missed Coach doing the gesture, but that is good that he was the one doing it as the man in charge. Todd Vote keeps us in the past with another one on iMPACT:
I’d like to point out a hidden highlight from the Sept.28th Impact. During the Six man X-division Tag match, the match was an afterthought for a moment when Christian and Rhyno did their thing. Immediately after the two were separated, Don West and Mike Tenay apologized to the talent in the ring about not paying attention to their match. This was a hidden highlight to me, because you see the other feds using these “throwaway matches” just to talk about a main event match or storyline.
West and Tenay made it seem as if what was happening in the ring was just as important as the story between the Captain and Rhyno.
JP: I was upset that they weren’t talking about the match (and Peter Kent would have really laid it in thick if he were around), but that apology did make up for it. I can’t remember the last time I heard a WWE announcer apologize for not calling a match. Speaking of the WWE, next up is Michael J. Miller with a mishap too good not to mention:
The real hidden highlight on Smackdown this week was the amazing editing by the WWE production team during Batista's entrance... hopefully you have this taped and can review it. Batista walks out, goes back and forth looking at the crowd (as is customary during his entrance since his return) and he has no tape on his wrists... then he sets up for his 'machine gun' fireworks and all of the sudden he has black tape on his wrists, not to mention different tights. They then cut back to a full body shot of Batista where he has no tape on his wrists... absolutely amazing.
JP: I did still have SmackDown! on TIVO and watched it, and sure enough you are spot on. That was some incredible editing. Did something happen during the fireworks? Was someone there live who could tell us. Speaking of editing, please be sure to spell check and use capital letters, thank you! Now here is Patrick Morone who didn’t need editing, but heard some self-editing going on:
I'm pretty sure that JR does read your column, because, a few HH columns ago, you included that JR said Ric Flair was arguably the greatest wrestler of all time. you pointed out that JR said wrestler and not sports entertainer, because most people would categorize Flair as a great wrestler, simply because he doesn't have a silly gimmick (esp have wrestled during the 80s) and that he spent most of his career in NWA and WCW, the less cartoony promotion. Nonetheless, the very next week on RAW, Flair was coming out and JR said that he was arguably the greatest sports entertainer of all time. Coincidence? Or more likely that JR reads 411!!
JP: Well JR, it looks like our wonderful readers have caught you in the act. Vince McMahon also said on ByteThis! that there are a few websites he visits but didn’t want to mention. Could that website be 411mania.com, and his favorite article Hidden Highlights? We’re depending on you, the readers, to watch and find out! That, and get more “This Sign is a Hidden Highlight” signs on TV!! All right, too much in the past, it’s time to get to the present… or more recent past, you know. Josh Lankton seems to be man for the job:
During the opening segment of RAW, while Coach was verbally scolding DX, I noticed (just shown for a moment) a fan holding a sign which read, "Welcome home, Coach" instantly reminding me that ol' Jonathan is from Kansas (also where I live) and it's good to see him get hometown love no matter how slight even if he is playing the heel. Thanks for the time, guys!
JP: Nothing to add but giving the Coach some love. Coach doesn’t really have a Kansas accent, though, so I completely forgot. Bobby D wants to give some props to my guys in the same match I mentioned above:
Here's a Hidden Highlight I noticed during the Randy Orton/Carlito match on RAW. Randy Orton concentrated a lot on Carlito's left hand. Now, that would make sense for your basic wrestling, wearing down a body part. Here's the Highlight. Ever since Carlito has been on RAW, Jim Ross has, on numerous occasions, pointed out that he is a southpaw (a.k.a. left-handed). So, Randy was attacking Carlito's stronger hand! Plus, kudos to Carlito for instinctively using the left hand for a clothesline and instantly showing signs of pain in his hand.
JP: An interesting twist on the whole match that added to what I said above (which is why I included it). Chris Vining jumps us ahead to iMPACT:
During the ring intro for the Cage/Jarrett vs Daniels/Killings main event Killings got a very unique introduction. After Daniels was announced, Killings was announced as his tag team partner "for this match", with some extra emphasis on the "for this match" part. Killings was just filling in for an injured AJ Styles, and TNA made sure we heard that.
JP: That’s a pretty good one, I do have to say. Then again, I remember when AJ/Daniels were tentative partners to begin with. In the same match, Adam Nelson got another one on Killings:
During Ron Killings' entrance for the tag match, a clever fan in the front row was doing The Robot, probably to show that he doesn't particularly like Killings' gimmick.
JP: Oh the iMPACT Zone… they need to get this show on the road and recycle the fans seen every week. Except for Meehan, they can continue to recycle him in the crowd shots.
And wrapping us up this week is Jay Wright with two I could not resist:
Who says you can't find Hidden Highlights in movies:
In "The Marine", after repeated attempts to kill off John Triton (Cena), Robert Patrick says, "This guy just doesn't die." Hidden highlight... this references Patrick's most infamous role of the T 1000 from T2: Judgment Day, the robot that keeps coming back regardless of mortal damage. Even funnier, one of Patrick's henchmen quips "This guy's like the Terminator!"
Who says you can't find hidden highlights in..... - part 2.
I know you're a big Saved by the Bell fan, so I’m so excited to point this one out. In the opening credits, watch the last scene (where the big 6 share a huge high five). That's right, Kelly proves her whiteness by MISSING THE HIGH FIVE!
JP: BWA HAHAHAHAHA! Now that’s a Classic Hidden Highlight right there! And I always say you can find Hidden Highlights anywhere, and these were two fantastic ones. What more can I say, but… KEEP THEM COMING!
Also, thanks to James Butler for correcting us (JT) and letting us know it was Chase Stevens who had the ankle injury, not Andy Douglas. Trying to keep it honest here!
JT: There were some really good one’s in there this week. Another thing I liked about The Marine trailer was when Robert Patrick says (when someone says ‘who’s here’) “The MarineS”. Plural. Not the most hidden thing but it just made me think of the way Cena is often booked, that he could easily take on more than one opponent, thus making him more than one man… or something. Yeah, it made sense when I thought of it.
Do you have a Hidden Highlight from this or any week in history that you would like to share? Please e-mail JP..erT…er…us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your thoughts! Send them by Friday afternoon to be considered! And remember, they can be from any show, live or taped, or any house show, or anything you saw… we just like to know!
That Other Section
This week, JP and JT have something for That Other Section.
JP: If you didn’t read what this was about, then click that link because it will explain all.
THE GREAT POSITIVITY DEBATE 3 TOURNAMENT: AND THE WINNER IS…
JP: It’s hard to live in a world of positivity, and the Great Positivity Debate was a demonstration of that. In a typical debate, the writers are trying to make the most valid point for their side. In TGPD, the writers were trying to make the most valid positive point as a test of their writing skills and imagination. You the readers were the ultimate judges and decided who moved on and who hit the bricks. As a reminder, here were the rules for the finals:
We will list eight topics.
Each side may have only one response to each topic.
The response to the topic can be no more than 500 words.
The response to the topic must be the most positive thing that side can think up.
The positive response must be something that side believes in (honor code in effect).
The first four topics will be answered first by one side, and then the two shall switch answering order.
At the end, you the readers will vote who is the winner.
Neither of these two competitors are fighting for who is more positive. Instead, they are fighting over who has more writing skill in the confines of positivity.
After eight weeks, our hardcore competitors fought through their peers for the right to take on the writers of the most positive article in the IWC in the GREAT POSITIVITY DEBATE 3: THE SEQUEL NOBODY ASKED FOR (hosted by the Shimmy’s Andy Clark. With the battles behind us, the brackets lined up like this:
Without further ado, the man who won this momentous tournament… the man who took it home with 38.5% of the vote… the man who fought through a pool of 411mania—nay, the entire IWC’s finest writers… the man wh—
JT: WILL YOU JUST GET ON WITH IT ALREADY!?!
JP: Ahem… that man is none other than:
JP: An incredible back and forth affair that saw either man with a lead here or there, but never by much. In the end, it was the most voted match up in the entire tournament, and Randle barely squeaked by the Cooked one by 2am GMT. So, JT, what do you think of facing Randle?
JT: You know what he said to me Friday night? And I quote, “You two couldn’t out-positive me on your most positive day ever”. Ammo for the locker, Randle… ammo for the locker.
JP: Damn straight. This is the King of Positivity you are talking to here! All right, with the tournament behind us, it’s time to move on the main event. But with that comes a tWiSt~~~!!!!
Randle, you now have a choice. You can either come into the TGPD3 alone and face the dominate duo of Team Hidden Highlights, or you may pick a partner to take us on in tag team action. Your partner can be any of your fellow competitors from the tournament, and you can chose any way to answer (switching off questions, working as a team, going with the best answer, whatever). We await your answer next week in Hidden Highlights.
In the meantime, readers and fellow combatants, start sending your questions to Andy Clark.
Once again, thanks to all who played and all who voted. Looking forward to decimating Randle in a few weeks!
JT: You are on NOTICE, Canada! Your silly little representative Randle is going to bring shame to your entire country.
Exit, stage left!
JT: Before we go, how about a message from our good buddy at Monk-Ey-Mail!
JP: Well, that was… something.
JT: It sure was! Have a good week my little miniature cows (who I only discovered exist this week)!
JP: You have really got to stop drinking before writing this column.
Thank you for joining us for THE 58th ISSUE of Hidden Highlights. Be sure to drop us a line and let us know what you think and all the other Hidden Highlights we missed. Plus, we want to hear your Reader Write-ins for all the moments you see this and every week.
We’ll catch you again next time in the reader approved most positive article in all of the IWC: Hidden Highlights! Until then!