Comedians want to be pro wrestlers the way athletes want to be rappers the way rappers want to be athletes the way pro wrestlers want to be comedians. The evidence is everywhere. The “comedian destroys heckler” YouTube clips is the “shoot interview.” Pro wrestlers are taking improv classes on their off days to improve their spontaneity skills. Retired wrestlers are replacing appearances in bingo halls with shows in comedy theaters.
In this new feature for With Spandex, I’ll be talking to notable comedians about their love of wrestling, how the sports entertainment business has affected their livelihood, and of course, what they would change in the current landscape of WWE.
Our first guest is comedian and writer Mike Lawrence. Mike’s credits include the MTV Movie Awards, @midnight, and his Comedy Central Records album Sadamantium. His chosen wrestling name would be The Broken Jew with his finishing move “The Resignation.” Ring the bell!
We start in the beginning, when Mike was 5 or 6 years old. The Ultimate Warrior and Jake the Snake is what he remembered as the gateway drugs. The WWF Superstars video game with Rick Rude helped a lot. But who has Mike despised from the very beginning, despite being the target demographic?
“I always hated Hulk Hogan. I still do. I’m sad that he’s racist, but I’m glad I was justified.”
I think a lot of wrestling fans who were anti-Hogan maybe temporarily joined team red-and-yellow during that Earthquake feud in 1990. Not Mike Lawrence, though. “I was never on his side. He was always a dick. He was always whining and complaining. Even the whole him and Andre thing, which was before my time, but I watched it later. He’s like ‘all you had to do was ask,’ but he should have given him the title shot. Dick move, Hogan.”
What’s the weirdest piece of merchandise Mike owns? “I had a Chris Benoit shirt for way longer than I should have. Someone gave it to me after he was a murderer. I wore it when I cleaned the house, but recently just threw it away.” Motion for everyone to throw their Chris Benoit shirts away. Or at least hide them.