THE MASTER OF THE AWKWARD PSEUDO-PLEX, RANCID RATBUTT GARFUNKEL! #GOBLINWEEK
A quick-ish update about where you can get my stuff!
1. GALAXY OF THE DAMNED
I recently went about collecting the first (and so far only) volume of my webcomic GALAXY OF THE DAMNED, and it is now available on Kindle for $2.99.
Some notes: It may not have zoom capabilities depending on your Kindle device. However, it does seem to zoom fine on the Kindle app (and if anybody is having technical issues, PLEASE let me know here or at firstname.lastname@example.org so I can seek a fix).
Currently, Kindle is the only format it is in, but I will (eventually) look into ComiXology, although I’m not super impressed with their android/kindle app (my experience with the iOS app is limited, but people have told me it works much better, which is no surprise to me). But hey, why cut myself off from another avenue.
Mostly, I’m just trying this stuff out to see how it all works and know what my options are when I have future comics I want to put out there for handheld devices. I figured GotD is all done and ready-to-use, so what the hey. The comic will remain available in its original webcomic form at galaxyofthedamned.com for the moment, but I might take it down sooner rather than later. I don’t really know right now.
2. ATOMIC ELBOW ISSUE 7
I wrote an essay about Wrestling Superstar Virgil! You can read it in good guy Robert Newsome’s wrestling fanzine THE ATOMIC ELBOW ISSUE 7.
It’s print-only, with limited copies remaining. It’s a great zine that I’ve wanted to contribute to from the very moment I read the first issue. So I’m feeling pretty damn good about getting in there. Like wrestling? Like good, funny, thoughtful writing? Like cool comics and illustrations? Like Dusty Rhodes? Then what the hell are you waiting for, brother?
My pulp crime novella is currently still available on Kindle, Smashwords and Barnes & Noble as an e-book. Pick it up while you can, because I’m not sure how much longer it will be available.
4. This blog
I do believe that’s all the things to date. Meanwhile, I’ve cooled off on the Van Dammage Papers at the moment, but I’ll be back with some new one soon. For one thing, I sat down and watched The Quest, which is a really stupid movie about James Bond selling JCVD into kickboxing slavery, and it features James Remar, who I love because I can’t tell if he’s one of the best actors I’ve ever seen or one of the worst.
I’m also occasionally updating with new sketches and such. I came to the realization some weeks back that while my undisclosed day job is exhausting and I feel like I have less and less time to work on all of this stuff, it’s really important that I make the time to do it all, because this is the stuff that matters. As silly as it might sound, I feel it’s important that I explore really shitty Van Damme movies, that I draw fan art of Robocop teaming up with Sting, that I try to get back to making more comics and simply writing more of the shit that I am best at.
So thanks for reading my blog, buying my stuff, sharing my art, and being all around cool people, whoever you are.
Yours in Macho Madness,
Presenting my almost-daily thing that I do just for the hell of it, Two Packs a Day! Every weekday, I open two packs of WCW trading cards from 1991 and share my findings with you, complete with cheap, lazy jokes at the expense of the professional wrestlers involved. Enjoy!
Hey there. I’m Mac. Now don’t none a y’all get yerselves all excited or nuthin, I just been tasked by Corwin’s agent (some four-eyed jackass named Mr. Ledbetter) with sharin what’s goin on with ol Corwin.
See, the sumbitch up and ran off. Last time I seen him, he wasn’t lookin so hot. it was a lil over a week ago when he come knockin on the door of my Airstream. When I answered, I could see he hadn’t been doin good, cuz his hair was all over the damn place and his neck beard had grown like a patch of weeds or somethin, just hair all over the damn place. And his eyes. See, I know Corwin’s not all there in his head, but he just looked crazed. Not even the meth heads out in Chino Valley look that nuts.
I gotta admit I didn’t want none of it at first. I took one look and I told that bum to fuck right off. I slammed the door in his hobo-lookin face and grabbed me a beer out of the cooler. But Corwin just pounded the door harder. He was yellin, too. Now, ya know, I watched me some wrasslin in my day but I ain’t all intellectual about it. I know me some Arn and Ole Anderson, I know me some Buddy Rogers, I know me some Harley Race, but that’s about it. Every once in a while Joey down the street has me over to his momma’s trailer in Cornville for the big pay-per-view, but shit, that’s about it. Corwin on the other hand, he damn well lives for the weird shit. He knows the name of wrasslers I didn’t even know existed.
And that night when he was poundin on my door, he was rantin and ravin about Steiners and Genetic Freaks and Dirty Dutch people and El-Gee-Gan-Tays. Fucked if I know what hell was goin on in his head. I finally opened the door again and there he was, just sittin on my steps, the pockets of his cut-offs stuffed with plastic WCW wrappers. He stunk of pipe tobacco and bathtub gin. He was forlorn.
So I asked him what the hell was up. He said he just couldn’t take anymore of them there cards he was writin about on his blog, and some shit about him tryin a be a “real writer” and write books and respectable shit and really I wasn’t paying a whole lotta attention no more cuz i noticed it was almost time for So You Think You Can Dance and I never miss that shit and now here was this highly educated in-tuh-lectual type cryin on my linoleum floor about figure four leglocks and Boston crabs and I can’t even make heads or tails because I’m allergic to seafood anyway.
So I smack the moron upside the head and tell him to man the fuck up and he wipes his nose on the sleeve of his lil wussy-ass Quantum Leap tee shirt and stands up and says I’m right. And I’m like, “well shit, Corwin, I know that.”
And then he straightens himself out and takes a beer out of the cooler and takes a big, cold drink of that beer and he asks what I’m up to and I tells him So You Think You Can Dance is comin on and I ain’t gonna miss that shit for what and he says cool and everything seems alright. I sit in my lay-z-boy with a pile of cold ones on the floor next to me and he leans against my shelf of Hustlers and we watch the show. And then he goes into the bathroom to take a leak. When the show’s over I notice he’s still in there and I tell him to hurry up and pinch that shit off. And then a whole ruckus kicks up in there and by the time I kick down the door he’s halfway out the bathroom window with his shirt peeled off and his face covered in my old lady’s lipstick like some kind of indian war paint and he says “Load the spaceship with the rocket fuel” and then he’s gone in the darkness. Next I hear the crash of glass and when I finally get my tired ass out the front door he’s peelin off in my old Maverick. Thats when I notice he stole my keys and then I’m just pissed off cuz my Basha’s card is on that keychain and now how am I supposed to get my member savings?
It’s bullshit, I tell you. I hate payin full price for my vegetables. The Maverick is kind of a prized possession as well, but only cuz I won it off Pete Slater in a game of quarters. We ain’t got a whole lot to do in the middle of December round here unless you like skiin. I hate the shit. Don’t ask me why I live in a mountain town that gets snow.
And that’s the last I seen of Corwin. I talked to his agent and he says Corwin just needs some time off to recuperate after all the hard work he was puttin in at the college and he and his buxom lil lady are just gettin some R&R. But I know that’s bullshit too.
The man’s lost his mind. I looked over at his tweeter account or whatever it is and he’s still talkin on it. Looks like he hit Tucson, which baffles me cuz nobody but crazies even wanna step foot in Tucson. But his agent says Corwin is back in town again, so I been tasked with tracking the little fucker down. I got a hot tip from one of the hoboes that hangs around Corwin’s neighborhood, so I’m gonna follow that up.
I’ll let you know. Until Corwin gets back, his agent has left me with his blog password and I’m gonna keep you up to date on my hunt.
Wish me luck,
It was as I began peeling away the plastic wrapper on the first of today’s packs that something hit me: I can’t take much more of this. I’m feeling my lowest, guys. I had a thought, back when I first came up with this sorta-daily bit, that this might happen. How little I knew, my friends.
I haven’t organized all the cards I’ve gone through just yet, so I don’t know if I have a complete set here, but it’s certainly starting to feel like I’ve seen all there is to see in this series. This is a card set consisting of 162 cards, with only 13 individual wrestlers, 4 tag teams (making that a total of 21 wrestlers represented), and 3 non-wrestling talents (two managers and an announcer). You’d think they would’ve tried to do more than just make 13 individual Sting cards, but alas, here we are with 13 cards devoted to the Stinger.
Now, I did a little research, and using Mike Rotunda (Mr. Wallstreet) as a marker, I was able to figure out that the period of time represented on these cards must be between roughly June 1990 and January 1991. I came to this conclusion upon learning that Rotunda turned heel and became Wallstreet in mid-1990, and then left WCW for the WWF in early 1991. By January 1991, any WCW rosters I can find online do not list Rotunda or Wallstreet.
If we can go off of this, we can determine during the period of time represented in this set, there were between 36 and 44 wrestlers on the WCW roster. Guys like Junkyard Dog, the Iron Sheik, the Nasty Boys, “Mean” Mark Callous (the Undertaker), and Vader. If you have Vader on your roster, why the hell do you not include him in a card set? Were there legal issues involved?
Now here’s what throws my theory about the time period into complete disarray: Dutch Mantell doesn’t show up on a WCW roster until March 1991. Now, if I am to believe the rosters I am finding online (which of course is risky, since it’s, you know, the internet), that means Dirty Dutch and Mr. Wallstreet weren’t even in WCW at the same time! Fuck!
So I don’t know what the hell was going on with these cards, obviously, but for some reason they only had 21 wrestlers they could use. That does not seem like a particularly good thing if you want to put out a set of trading cards.
Impel could’ve done something they had previously worked into the Marvel Universe trading card series by devoting cards to famous matches, or perhaps big feuds or stables or even showcased more of the non-wrestling talent, but instead this is what we got.
So I’m feeling it, friends. I’m feeling my lowest. I’ve seen it all! And if I haven’t, I have yet to encounter a sign that I’m wrong.
I can’t look at another card of Ricky Morton’s sad, disheveled face. I can’t handle another poor attempt to make El Gigante seem like a serious competitor. No more, I say. Please.
But I must finish opening this second pack. I have to.
Folks, while the title of this blog series is a clever joke referring to smoking cigarettes, I have to tell you that I’d rather risk lung cancer than open this pack of WCW cards. But here we go.
First, let me make a sacrifice to the deadly Black Scorpion, so that he may bring me good fortune in this pack…
Okay, pack opened… Nothing, nothing, nothing… wait.
It can’t be! It’s impossible!
Dutch Mantell, you sonufabitch! You magnificent bastard! You dirty scoundrel! You and your glorious poncho have saved me from certain doom, just so you can prolong the torture? To what end? To. What. End???
I will play your game, Dirty Dutch. But to defeat you, I must learn your secrets! I must become you!
2 packs! 24 cards! What treasures lie within???
Let’s look at today’s Top 5!
I present the return of the Dutch! I’m sorry! I swear I am truly sorry, but this guy is too glorious not to showcase every time he shows up on a card. Especially this card, where his hair and beard unite to create an ungodly mane of Mufasa proportions.
So last time we saw Dutch, the writers of these cards were unsure if he was the hairiest man in wrestling. Now it appears they’ve sealed it. The thing is, though… I am far more interested now in why he named his bullwhip “Shoebaby.” It must have been quite a big deal. I mean, WCW thought it was necessary to trademark the name.
Okay, who ordered the Confederate strippers?
Also, how did I not already know that Confederate strippers were a thing?
Man, I bet this is what Strom Thurmond saw when he died.
I am beginning to wonder if perhaps El Gigante had a special card writer from his home country of Argentina, who was given the specific task of writing each El Gigante card in this set. That’s the only explanation I can come up with regarding WTF is going on here.
So who is Doom? Doom is a tag team consisting of Butch Reed and future World Heavyweight Champion Ron Simmons, who has sadly spent the past 20 years (give or take) since then being treated like a chump by both the WWF and WCW. Simmons and Reed started in the NWA/WCW as the tag team Doom, and garnered plenty of accolades. In this card set, it appears that they were intended to be enemies of Sting in particular.
Regardless, Simmons shortly went into singles competition after Doom had a reign as Tag Team champs, and he managed to earn a title shot via lottery to face Big Van Vader, who he actually defeated, making him the first African American world heavyweight champion in wrestling (according to the WWE). He held the title for five months, which probably makes his reign longer than most of the championship reigns in the later Monday Night Wars-era WCW. Hell, that’s longer than modern title reigns seem to run anymore.
And what happened? He later ended up in the WWF/WWE, where he showed up on the midcard, at best. He’s better known by wrestling fans today as the black dude who randomly shows up backstage and says, “Damn!”
Oh ,and Butch Reed? Oh, he only went a full 60 minutes with Ric Flair in a no-DQ match in 1985.
So yeah, Butch Reed and Ron Simmons? Legitimate badasses.
I tell you, I am beginning to hate Terry Taylor. Who the hell is he kidding in that thing?
2 packs! 24 cards! What treasures lie within???
Let’s look at today’s Top 5!
I will stop picking the Steiners Bros. when I stop getting amazing Steiner Bros. cards. This one was a tough call, so I just picked both cards, BECAUSE DOGS ARE AWESOME.
Dogs make almost everything better. Beer commercials? Better with dogs, as proven by Spuds McKenzie. Christmas songs? Better when sung (or howled) by dogs. Superheroes? Better when they have dog sidekicks (Krypto is probably my favorite thing from Superman comics).
And wrestlers? Better when they’re accompanied by dogs (Except when the dog in question is actually a person)!
Fuck yeah dogs! Oh wait…
Thanks, WCW and/or Impel, for helping promote the bad image unfairly associated with pit bulls. Because, you know, pit bulls totally eat people. Dicks.
2. Best Outfit
I was feeling down after that last card, but then Ricky Morton showed up with his outer space pirate shirt to cheer me up! I’m glad to see he learned to accessorize since our last encounter, and he’s really nailed it here: nothing goes better with that strange assortment of rags than a puffy blouse made out of Apollo 11 astronauts.
I guess you gotta do what you gotta do when you look like Joel Hodgson’s less-talented white trash brother.
I will tell you right now, every Mr. Wallstreet card is insane. This one is just the tip of the iceberg.
I don’t know what to focus on: the likely unintended sexual innuendo (he’s “plugged in to her data base,” *snort*) or the fact that he’s using the magic of computers to beat his opponents. I bet it’s really exciting to watch.
I bet it looks just like this. Just with less Penn Jillette.
No, that’s not Garrett from Community. That’s Tommy Rich, and I have no idea who the hell he is or why somebody thought we needed a trading card of him. Turns out, the guy was once, back in the early 80s, NWA World Heavyweight Champion, albeit for only 4 days, as he dropped the belt to Harley Race, the previous holder of the title (in what Harley Race claims was a move by Jim Barnett to maintain some level of control over the NWA).
In what should be no surprise by now, Rich was actually quite popular in the Georgia and Memphis territories in the 70s and 80s, and by the time WCW brought him in he was an accomplished veteran (for those not in the know, WCW, owned by Ted Turner, was based out of Atlanta and worked to maintain the following it had built in the South by enlisting well known stars from the region). Sadly, he was quickly relegated to mid-card status as a member of the York Foundation (the same stable that was home to the aforementioned Mr. Wallstreet, along with Terry Taylor), and then was dropped to the bottom of the card once that stable broke up.
And now I am sad again. I’ll just watch this to feel better.
Feelin’ better already!
Considering how legendarily horrible the late El Gigante/Giant Gonzalez was in the ring, I wouldn’t be surprised if Ric Flair simply burst into flames when they faced each other.