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Cereal killer: Hulk Hogan goes cuckoo over Cocoa Pebbles ad

May 24th, 2010 2 comments

Terry "the Hulk" Boulder debuts in Memphis in 1979. Comic-book-style lettering by Jerry Lawler.

Hulk Hogan can’t stay out of a courtroom nowadays. His latest foes: the dastardly trio of Fred Flintstone, Barney Rubble and Bamm Bamm (not to be confused with a young Terry Gordy).

The Tampa Tribune is reporting that the Hulkster has filed a federal lawsuit against Post Cereal for using his likeness in a recent Cocoa Pepples commercial: The ad features a bulky, blonde mustachioed wrestler named Hulk Boulder going to mat and handily beating Fred Flintstone and Barney Rubble — but losing to Barney’s brawny son, Bamm-Bamm. In the lawsuit filed in federal court in Florida, Hogan claims Post uses his image without his permission and degrades him by showing him “humiliated and cracked into pieces with broken teeth, with the closing banner, ‘Little Pieces…BIG TASTE!'” Hogan said he used the name Hulk Boulder early in his career before changing it at the suggestion of wrestling promoter Vince McMahon. Hogan voiced his objections to the ad with Post in August, but said the company continued airing “Cocoa Smashdown” ads, which Hogan claims have harmed him with “unauthorized and degrading depictions.”

Keep in mind that most of Hulk’s previous humiliating, degrading depictions have been completely authorized, so Hogan’s lawsuit shouldn’t be surprising, especially given the financial woes from his well-publicized divorce and the tragic car accident involving that douchebag son of his. The lawsuit also mentions Hulk’s line of microwavable cheeseburgers and energy drinks, so this could definitely cause great confusion to all Hulkamaniacs shopping at Wal-Marts throughout the universe, brother.

While Post’s biggest crime may be an incredible lack of originality, Hogan might have a case. That is, if the cereal company had in fact used the “Hulk” name; however, it sounds more like “Bulk Boulder” to me. (Besides, with the possible exception of some of his Japan matches, I’ve never seen Hogan move as fluid as Bulk in the ring…not even on “Hulk Hogan’s Rock ‘n’ Wrestling.”)

Regarding his old ring name, Terry “the Hulk” Boulder was introduced to Memphis fans in 1979 via a video reportedly shot at Jerry Jarrett’s house. (See clip below.) With the lights dimmed and the 24-inch pythons oiled, Bollea engaged in a version of the posing routine that would become a staple of his WWF act years later as announcer Michael St. John provided the voice-over. (St. John was the memorable voice behind the infamous Kimala and Apocalypse [Mike Boyette] videos shot in the mysterious jungle surrounding Jarrett’s sprawling estate.)

With Lou Ferrigno a huge star in 1979 as a result of the excellent “The Incredible Hulk” TV series on CBS, Jarrett’s suggestion that Bollea assume the moniker of the Marvel Comics character was an inspired decision. Hogan claims in his book (speaking of authorized degrading depictions) that Jarrett gave him “the Hulk” gimmick after the Memphis promoter saw him dwarf Ferrigno when the two appeared side by side on a local TV talk show. (And here I thought they called him the Hulk because he was so green.) Although Bollea’s story is certainly possible, as Ferrigno did make the local TV rounds to promote a personal appearance at Liberty Land amusement park in 1979, like anything else that Hogan claims, I’d take it with a grain of  Fuji’s salt. The problem with the story is that Boulder was immediately booked as the Hulk when he made his first Mid-South Coliseum appearance on May 14, 1979, as Lawler’s mystery wrestler to challenge the Stomper for the Southern title. (Keep in mind that Hogan also claims that Elvis Presley used to watch him wrestle in Memphis. While Presley was a fan and did occasionally attend the matches, it’s impossible that he ever saw the Hulk, as Elvis died in August 1977… almost two years before Terry Boulder debuted. Maybe Hulk meant Elvis was there in spirit.)

While Hulk lacks credibility in every aspect of his existence, there’s no denying that the Post cartoon character resembles Hogan, especially in his younger days (when he actually had hair). I’m thinking Post taps out and settles with Hulk before taking the financial equilvalent of a boot to the face, legdrop, 1, 2, 3.

Then again, maybe Hogan doesn’t even want a cash payoff. Those close to the Hulk claim that Hogan is still smarting from his sound defeat in 1984 at the hands of the Honey Nut Cheerios Bee–the original little Stinger–who refused to return the favor. Maybe he’ll be satisified if Bamm Bamm agrees to do a job in a return bout in a TNA ring a la the Ultimate Warrior in WCW. Now that’s ratings, brother.

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Scott Hall is doing great

May 24th, 2010 1 comment

Hey, yo: Survey sez "One more for the good guys!"

If I were one half of TNA’s World tag-team champions, I’d probably drink, too. Scott Hall was partying like it was 1995 recently, which for Da Bad Guy only means trouble.

Reports the Orlando Sentinel:

Professional wrestler Scott Oliver Hall was arrested earlier this month on charges of disorderly intoxication and resisting an officer following an incident at a Seminole County bar, sheriff’s records show. Hall, 51, was at the Hitching Post Bar in Chuluota on May 14, when the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office was called in for a disturbance complaint about 1:43 a.m., an offense report shows. The deputy found a bartender standing in the door telling Hall to leave, but Hall was yelling and cursing at the bartender and other patrons there, according to the deputy’s account. The deputy also said Hall appeared intoxicated with slurred speech and bloodshot eyes. When the deputy advised Hall he was being placed in custody for disorderly intoxication, he tried to prepare him for the handcuffs, but Hall refused, the documentation states.
  
“Scott refused this directive, and instead, thrust out his chest, walking closer to me, stating, ‘I ain’t going down for this [expletive deleted],’ ” the report states. “This is [expletive deleted]. You know it’s [expletive deleted].” The report goes on to say that Hall continued to refuse, but the deputy managed to secure his left wrist with a handcuff and then pulled his right arm behind him. “Due to Scott’s inordinate size, 6’05”, 295 pounds, I utilized two sets of handcuffs in tandem,” the deputy noted in the report.
  
Let’s see: unruly pro wrestler, police, handcuffs, resisting arrest…almost sounds like a Vince Russo angle. The only thing missing is a black limo and/or Hummer.
 
Climbing the ladder: Years before their famous WrestleMania match, a young Hall and Michaels helped steal the show on this January night in Memphis in 1988.

Two of the people I respect most in wrestling, Jerry Jarrett and Dutch Mantell, have both told me that Hall’s story is one of the greatest wastes of talent in the history of the business. And frankly, given the numerous drug addicts and hopeless causes in wrestling, that’s saying a lot. Physically, the guy for years had the tools to have good bouts with most wrestlers and stellar matches working with the likes of Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels–in fact, the Ladder Match between the former Razor Ramon and the Heartbreak Kid at WrestleMania X is usually on the short list of the greatest bouts ever held on WWE’s biggest stage.

Personally, I have some fond memories of Razor and Michaels working together in Memphis, producing some of the best bouts in the territory in 1988 in a series of bouts at the Mid-South Coliseum with Hall and “Nightmare” Ken Wayne challenging the Midnight Rockers for the AWA World tag titles. In those ’80s bouts, Michaels was showcasing some of the heel persona and timing that would help establish him as a singles star in the early ’90s.

Others have said at one time Hall had a good mind for the business and could be pretty creative when asked for input. In fact, he’s widely credited with suggesting that Sting adopt the Crow-like persona that made him the most intriguing character in wrestling in late 1996 and throughout 1997.

Although a key factor in WCW’s resurgence in the mid-’90s when he and Kevin Nash jumped McMahon’s ship for greener pastures in Turnerland, Hall also represented everything that eventually doomed the company. Against better judgment, he was thrust into TNA’s spotlight in January as part of the not-NWO reunion, despite the fact that he looked haggard, incoherent and bloated. In the ring, he’s been sad to watch, a shell of his former self.

Instead of being fired, earlier this month Hall was awarded one half of TNA’s World tag straps, along with Nash, via a fluke win eerily reminiscent of the Big Sexy/Hogan WCW title finger-poke switch in Atlanta that is generally regarded as the beginning of the end for WCW. Ironically enough, when asked about his profession by police after the incident, Hall replied, “I’m unemployed.” (Shades of the Big Lebowski.)

Hulk Hogan’s marriage, hair go down drain

May 18th, 2010 No comments

Hairy situation: After taking his balls, Linda Hogan strips Hulkster of remaining dignity, hair.

The real reason Hulk Hogan was suicidal in the days following the nasty split from his wife, Linda: the Hulkster accidentally burned off the precious remaining scraps of his mane when trying to bleach it, reports contactmusic.com. Seems that Linda has been bleaching Hulk’s hair since the ’80s, when the two most powerful forces in the universe were joined in marriage, so Hogan claims that he “never really paid attention” to the process.

His voice cracking, Hogan  tells contactmusic.com: “When she filed for divorce, and I was on my own and the roots grew out, I went to my local drug store and bought the hair (chemicals) and put in on. I didn’t know you weren’t supposed to put it on the scalp. I kind of rubbed it through (my hair) and then the phone rang. It was on for an hour… (Then) I’m in the shower and it (my hair) all goes down there (the drain).”

Reportedly, Hogan was relegated to using hair extensions and Krazy Gluing a bandana to his head following the mishap. Linda was also allegedly administering his injections, which explains why Hogan’s muscles have shrunk in greater proportion to his testicles (which have since been removed by the former Mrs. Hulkster).

My goodness. Hard to believe Hogan and Ric Flair, two of the top three icons of the ’80s (along with Dusty Rhodes), have had their asses handed to them of late by their women, in public if you will.  Sure, Rhodes was emasculated years ago by Baby Doll, who cost him the NWA World title so she could ride Space Mountain in 1986–but at least Big Dust went on to find true love in the form of the late Sapphire.