WWE released a handful of Superstars last Friday, and while many of them had run their course — Hornswoggle, Santino Marella and others — one name made the company’s more enlightened fans mad. SILENCE! WWE released Damien Sandow, and now the talking point goes from being, “Why aren’t they using Damien Sandow, he’s great,” to being, “Why didn’t they use Damien Sandow?”
We’ve been fans of Sandow since the inception of the character, so to deal with our grief, we’re gonna look back at some of his greatest moments. If your favorite Sandow moment isn’t on the list, drop down into our comments section and let us know what it is. If your favorite IS on our list, let us know why you love it. And, because this goes without saying … you’re welcome.
The (Un-) Debut
Sandow made his “in-ring debut” on the May 4, 2012, edition of Smackdown. I put in-ring debut in quotes because he doesn’t actually wrestle … he refuses to compete, citing his desire to be a role model to the unwashed, unenlightened masses. If he beat up an average jerk like Derrick Bateman, how would anyone in the crowd. This is going to hurt him a lot more than it’s gonna hurt you, and you’re welcome.
(Also, shoutout to Derrick Bateman!)
Looking For An Apprentice
You can’t save masses by yourself. For a while, Sandow was looking for an apprentice, and the only way he could find someone worthy of his knowledge was via the Bridge of Death gag from Monty Python and the Holy Grail. It’s still so satisfying to hear Sandow angrily call a stranger an idiot for five minutes for not knowing the orbital velocity of Jupiter’s moon Europa.
“You ignoramus! The answer is 13.74 km/sec! Congratulations, you have embarrassed yourself, you have embarrassed your family, and you have embarrassed the entire state of Louisiana. Your public display of ignorance is surpassed only by that ridiculous haircut. Leave my ring, you are dismissed! Leave the ring, leave the building, leave this town, leave this state, leave the United States of America!”
Damien Sandow On Country Music
Sandow visits Nashville and complains about how the “shameful at best” citizenry listens to country music instead of Beethoven and Mozart. To Sandow, country music is just, “songs about dead dogs, broken-down pickup trucks, and overly sensitive ignoramuses getting their hearts broken.” Nailed it.
For a few weeks back in 2013, The Intellectual Savior made it his mission to outsmart and publicly embarrass Sheamus by emasculating him with riddles and carnival games. It’s one of those things that shouldn’t work, but does, because of Sandow’s commitment to the bit. He fools Sheamus with a Gordian Knot — learn to think outside of the box, Sheamus! — and gets as condescending as humanly possible during a shell game. That one gets maybe the first-ever totally contextual “show your balls” chant from a WWE audience. Sandow’s face when he hears it is so good.
Five minutes of Damien Sandow insulting people at the San Diego Comic-Con is not enough. They should’ve given it seven hours of coverage like it was a WrestleMania.
Damien Sandow singing Randy Orton’s theme would be funny alone, but it remains one of Sandow’s best moments because it doubles as one of modern WWE’s most brutal promo takedowns.
“Randy has voices inside his head, just watching him puts me to bed, puts me to sleep. Randy walks down here on this ramp, his expression stays the same, does his pose up in the corner, can’t think of anything more lame. All his tattoos ares disgusting, all that oil on him is heinous, I guess you get to sit back and watch me beat this ignoramus.”
The DX Sacrifice
Despite knowing he’s going to get beaten up, Sandow offers himself up as a “martyr for anyone who appreciates a sophisticated mind” to stop a corny D-Generation X reunion segment. They cheap-shot him and attack him while everyone cheers. We appreciate your martyrdom, Mr. Sandow.
Team Rhodes Scholars
Whether it was yelling at The Miz for “perpetuating this Honey Boo-Boo-esque trash talk TV,” picking apart an anger management therapist for his poor technique or upping the intellectual quality of the New Age Outlaws theme, the pairing of Damien Sandow and Cody Rhodes as a-hole smart guys with differing abilities to grow facial hair is one of my favorites ever. “Team Rhodes Scholars” were the best, and, like Sandow himself, never truly got the glory they deserved. Here’s their match celebration, which was a handshake into an assisted cartwheel.
In case you ever wanted to see Big Show dunk on an episode of Raw, here you go. Between being an Intellectual Savior and becoming Miz’s stunt double, Sandow tried to find himself with a series of increasingly bizarre, unnecessary impersonations. Here he is as former Indiana Pacers star Lance Stephenson, challenging Big Show to a game of one-on-one and blowing in his face. He gets knocked out, because pretty much every Damien Sandow segment ever ended with him getting knocked out.
The Master Of Magnetism
Like we said, increasingly bizarre. Here’s Sandow as Magneto (in a Magneto hoodie from Hot Topic and some red tights) trying to use actual mutant magnetism powers against Hugh Jackman. “Don’t tell me what to do! I AM MAGNETO!”
Damien Mizdow (All)
Sandow’s penchant for impersonations ended up landing him the role of The Miz’s “stunt double.” When Miz didn’t want to wrestle, he’d sub in Sandow dressed as The Miz, calling him “Damien Mizdow.” For some reason, that perfectly acceptable definition of stunt double turned into The Miz having a valet/tag team partner who just constantly dressed like and mimicked him. Even when they were in matches together.
By pure will and power of Sandow’s charisma, the character became one of the best (and most shockingly popular) in WWE. You can see all kinds of compilation clips on YouTube, and you should watch them all. Sadly, Miz’s obligations and a batch of bad timing kept the angle from playing out and paying off like it should, so we got some dissension via Viagra parody commercials and a blowoff in the middle of a WrestleMania pre-show battle royal. The character turned face, just started mocking people for fun, and lost 100% of its charm. Then it turned into a bad Macho Man impression and sorta dissipated in the wind.
Sadly, the last great Damien Sandow moment on the list is the last great Damien Sandow moment. Relegated to background extra in the WrestleMania 32 Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal, Sandow stands up to Big Show and guy who should definitely be more important than the regular wrestlers Shaquille O’Neal, and the crowd gives him one of the warmest reactions of the night. He gets thrown out like a chump, and the crowd boos. It was nothing, but it was a reminder that Sandow made a distinct, real impression on the WWE Universe, and no, that’s no a pun.