The rec.sport.pro-wrestling Awards are the oldest fan-voted awards on the internet, and, well, let me let them do the talking for a second:
The Theszie Awards (the rec.sport.pro-wrestling Awards) are the oldest pro wrestling fan awards on the Internet, dating back to 1990 (when Mr. Perfect, quite appropriately, won Best Wrestler) and the wild, heady days of Usenet. (In the old days all votes and tabulation were done by hand. Now, in the fresh new world of 2015, we use computers to make voting by computer easier, because that is how we innovate – we are truly the Kanyon of indie pro wrestling media.)
The only older fan awards are the Pro Wrestling Observer’s awards, which date back to 1980, but Dave Meltzer did not make the jump to the internet until well after the RSP-W Awards had begun. So technically we’re the oldest. (Also, voters can participate in the Theszies for free, which is another important distinction from Meltzer’s awards.) The Theszies offer a record of fan opinion going back decades, a snapshot of every year of what wrestling fans thought about pro wrestling. We think that’s pretty cool.
Every year, voters can make their opinion known in numerous categories, celebrating both the best and worst of professional wrestling of the previous year, using a limited ranked-ballot system to ensure that the true consensus of wrestling fans is met. Presently there are 41 individual award categories, offering fans the chance to vote on everything from Best Wrestler to Best Flyer to Most Underrated Wrestler to Worst Major Show.
The awards close on February 7th, so we here at With Spandex thought we’d help you out by giving you our entirely unsolicited advice in a few categories. I mean…we might not specifically tell you to vote for With Spandex in the Best Wrestling Media category, but it’d be a lot cooler if you did.
I like the newly renamed Theszies because it’s not just a one-and-done vote. You rank your top three choices, AND there’s a section for write-in votes. I don’t have to compromise my love for Kazuchika Okada (and I would never), but I can still acknowledge what a great year someone like, say, Drew Gulak is having. Seth Rollins should be a pretty clear top contender, but I can also say “hey, listen, Kimber Lee kinda rocked my world way more times than Brock Lesnar did but don’t tell him oh god I’m sorry I’m so sorry how do I delete this.”
The Best Tag Team is pretty obviously The Young Bucks. You can say they’re just flips and crotch chops, but also listen Jim Cornette, you need to calm down and get out of this thread. The fact is that they’re operating at the top level in New Japan, but also selling out indie shows across North America by just being there. When they are there, they don’t just listlessly work through some superkicks and that’s that. I’ve seen them live more than I’ve seen probably any other wrestler…okay, ever if we’re being honest, and it’s always a fun match. They don’t demand that they go over your local heroes, and really just make everybody involved look good. My number one is still going to be a write-in vote for Team Tremendous (Dan Barry and Bill Carr) because they are my Actual Favourites, and the matches I’ve gotten to witness in multiple promotions in 2014 (including two against the Young Bucks) have been bananas. This is the most biased vote in the entire thing, at that includes the one for a place that is paying me right now.
Best Babyface? It’s Sami Zayn. Full stop.
The Best Match category is really a time for New Japan nerds to shine. The category is dominated by puro, but don’t sleep on any of the NXT women’s matches from 2014. Bayley vs. Charlotte was fraught with emotion, and I will fight you in real life if you think either that or Charlotte vs. Sasha Banks were worse than any match with AJ Styles. Hell, I’ll fight AJ Styles in real life. I’ve stood next to him in an elevator. I’m pretty sure I could take him.
Best Heel? EC3. Then, now, forever EC3.
Best Organization is also more than likely going to be NJPW, but maybe try tossing a vote to some really solid players like Lucha Underground, or maybe I don’t know Inspire Pro Wrestling or something. With Spandex may be the most biased when to comes to both of those, but a) you should watch and love Lucha Underground, and b) Inspire legitimately had such a solid year from start to finish it’s kind of astounding. You can also see for yourself at their YouTube page, because they have some entire shows for free because they’re smart and great and I’m always right about everything.
The Best Gimmick is SUPERCOP DICK JUSTICE. Like, I’m not even going to pretend there are other options.
Best Major Show is difficult, only because you have four NXT shows to choose from, and three spots. Have fun agonizing over that vote!
I don’t usually like the “Worst” categories, because most of the time the nominations are way off and seem really mean-spirited, but Worst Wrestler is Roderick Strong in a walk, and I dunno…Cameron I guess. Wait, remember the time she wanted to pin someone while they were on their tummy? Yeah. Count it. Also Cameron.
In the end, you really should vote based on what you’ve personally seen and your personal feelings, but also know that I know what I’m doing and I will try to force you to love what I love in every possible way I can. So vote now, and know that if you don’t at least vote for With Spandex, I probably hate you and will never talk to you again ever. Have fun!