I know, I know – today’s induction is nothing new. In many ways, it’s a rerun of what probably was the genesis of WrestleCrap.com in the first place.
If you ever wanted to know the absolute best reason to plunk down your $9.99 a month to get the WWE Network, ignore whatever creepface JBL is telling you on Raw. Instead, consider the fact that for less than ten bucks, you can screen grab pictures of the Gobbledy Gooker in high def. That’s money well spent.
I love the Gooker, obviously.
His existence in many ways led not only to the creation of this here website, but also the opening chapter of the first WrestleCrap book (get it super duper cheap here), which tells the more or less autobiographical story of a young guy forgoing Thanksgiving with the family to drive for hours and hours to head to the Survivor Series. Said it before, I will say it again: Vince McMahon’s greatest achievement isn’t leading his company to monopoly status in his industry, but rather the fact that he somehow convinced people to pay money to see what was going to hatch from an egg on a pro wrestling show.
Arguably just as shocking is the amount of wrestling mascots we got following what was considered one of the worst debuts in wrestling history.
I can’t be the only one that loves the fact that as WCW was hemorrhaging money, they decided to revamp their long, LONG forgotten mascot. And the revamped said cat into something resembling a wolf man! Wouldn’t shock me if they actually renamed him Wild Wolf Willie in the process. Yes, I know his initials would no longer be WCW…but do you really think the braintrust running the show at the time would have noticed this?
The company that sent Chris Jericho checks for zero dollars and zero cents?
The company that kept Lanny Poffo under contract for years, paying him to do absolutely nothing?
The company that did everything they possibly could to drive themselves out of business and ultimately succeeding in spectacular fashion (all of which is documented here)?
SPEAKING OF companies doing everything they possibly could to drive themselves out of business…
…DID YOU KNOW TNA had a mascot? A mascot named Stomper?
He was a kangaroo or something. I’m honestly not quite sure. Nor am I sure why he’s holding a big clear tubular thingy that may have come out of Austin Powers Swedish-Made Pump collection. (Note to self – ask around to folks not as ancient as I if Austin Powers references are now considered nostalgic or simply dated. I like to think the former…but fear the latter.)
What I am sure of is the fact that Dixie Carter and company felt the need to copy every horrible idea ever in wrestling right down to an idiotic mascot that no one could possibly like.
All of which leads us to today’s topic!
Whereas the wrestling mascots I mentioned above were miserable failures due to the desire of the various companies to play them as fan favorite characters, today’s had no such alignment.
After all this time, after all those abject failures, we finally got what the world was awaiting: a HEEL wrestling mascot!
And honestly, he was kinda awesome.
Behold the Swagger Soaring Eagle!
Yes, the Swagger Soaring Eagle of the Jack Swagger clan. And hey, remember when Jack’s “dad” (who looked amazingly like Bunkhouse Buck (because, you know, he was Bunkhouse Buck)) was on WWE television?
Not as good as running around with a man in a wacky bird outfit, though.
People point to the period he was with Zeb Colter as the highlight of his career, but honestly, I would be completely shocked (and somewhat saddened!) if I were to learn he didn’t have more fun playing with a goofy bird.
I mean really, look at how much fun they are having. Jack and his feathered friend. His feathered friend the Swagger Soaring Eagle. You really think he was enjoying life more putting a hand over his chest and yelling “We the people!”?
But while Swagger no doubt was enjoying himself, I’m not sure the Eagle felt the same way. This poor bird took a lot a lot alota punishment over his short WWE career.
He was speared…
…punched in the beak…
…and finally beaten so badly…
…and he needed to be carted out on a stretcher.
His most traumatic moment, though, had to be when he faced what is legitimately rumored to be one of the stiffest performers in all of WWE.
The Tale of the Tape does not lie.
We actually got The Eagle vs. Hornswoggle one week on Smackdown!
Why it was not saved for pay-per-view I do not know.
The bout started as most experts predicted it would – with the Eagle prancing about like he’d just evacuated 3 gallons of urine from his innards into his costume.
If I was Hornswoggle I’d have run for the hills too!
Instead, the leprechaun got out his bag of AKME (sic) BIRDSEED and threw it on the mat. While the bird looked a bit confused at first, Rosa Mendez, who was at ringside for reasons never fully explained, patted her belly in a “YUM YUM!” manner.
I know a lot of people have bagged on Rosa over the years, but I’ve always had a soft spot in my heart for Rosa ever since her days of decidedly non-G-rated outfits on Saturday Morning Slam.
YUM YUM BELLY guarantees her a spot in my personal Divas Hall of Fame.
The bird rightly distracted, Hornswoggle promptly puts on a bib, gets out a salt shaker and yes…
…begins to chomp on the leg of the bird.
I have no doubt that someone on this big old internet took off a half star from their match rating for taking a chomp out of his shin instead of the upper thigh.
Somehow, someway, the bird is able to recover from this and promptly decides to go…
You know how much I would mark out if the bird were to take off his head and reveal himself to be MVP?
That’s right – I wouldn’t mark out at all.
What I would mark out for would be the end of this match.
No, not the tadpole splash off the top that gains the midget the victory.
No, not the fact that Horny celebrates by rubbing his head in Rosa’s crotch.
Sadly, the bird vanished shortly after this defeat. Rumor has it that the man in the outfit was none other than Chavo Guerrero…whose uncle, Hector, portrayed the Gooker.
Here’s to hoping the Guerrero family continues to keep birds in wrestling rings for generations to come!