Episode Seventy-Nine - Handsome


Did anyone put more bounties on their opponents than Harley?

We welcome back Wrestling Observer Live’s Mike Sempervive (@sempervive) to the pod, to discuss the life and times of former NWA champion Harley Race, who passed away on August 1 at the age of 76. We discuss the amazing obstacles Harley overcame to become one of the most admired and respected wrestlers on the modern era. We also look at some of his career highlights, opponents and angles. In addition to the appreciation of Handsome Harley, we chat about wrestling history, the greatness of the @RonFullerWelch podcast, the place of the Welch/Fuller dynasty in wrestling history, Jim Barnett, Jerry Jarrett, Ron Wright, Les Thatcher, the Knoxville 5 tape, the old school Wrestling Observer newsletter, watching wrestling in the pre-cable era and much more. An extra-sized show this episode, fitting to discuss the greatest wrestler on god’s green earth.

Episode Seventy-Six - Divided by Zero


Sargasso, from Section Zero. (c) 2019 Karl Kesel and Tom Grummett

The pod returns with a guest we have been trying to get on for quite a while. Longtime comics creator Karl Kesel (@karlkesel) is here to discuss his current Kickstarter project Section Zero 1959, a continuation of the series he and Tom Grummett started almost 20 years ago. We talk about the creation of that series in 2000 and its return as a Kickstarter project in 2017., with the hardcover out now and the story being serialized by Image Comics in April. We talk about the book’s inspirations , notably the work of Jack Kirby. (I interviewed Karl way back in issue 27 of the Jack Kirby Collector about his love of the King and some of his more esoteric characters).

We also do a deep dive into Karl’s career, featuring some of our favorite books over the last couple decades. We chat about a few books he did with Stuart Immonen, Adventures of Superman, the Fantastic Four Annual from 1998 and the DC event series Final Night. We also discuss one of my all-time favorite (and all too brief) comic books series his run on Daredevil with Cary Nord.

On the day of our interview, Section Zero 1959 had two weeks left to go in its Kickstarter campaign and was just over 80% funded. For information on the book and some very cool incentives if you pledge, head over to SectionZero1959.com.

Two other pieces of business: We will soon be starting our series on the website called High Wire Act, which is an episode by episode break-down of the classic 1960s spy show Danger Man (aka Secret Agent). We hope to have a pod up soon discussing that with a returning podcast guest. Also, we are in talks to do our first convention in a few years in the summer. If we do the show, we will likely have a new issue of the magazine out to go along with the appearance.

Spidey Amuck. From Daredevil 354. (c) 2019 Marvel Comics

Spidey Amuck. From Daredevil 354. (c) 2019 Marvel Comics

Episode Seventy-Five - The Shareef Don't Like It

Just one example of Vince McMahon’s great history of Middle East relations.

Just one example of Vince McMahon’s great history of Middle East relations.

On the eve of the WWE Crown Jewel (aka Blood Money) special, I’m joined by Associated Press reporter Ashraf Khalil (@ashrafkhalil) to talk about a variety of issues related to the show. Among the various topics discussed, we talk about the history of xenophobia in pro wrestling, Middle East politics, the familial permutations of all the Samoans and other Pacific Islanders, late 1980s AWA, the socio-political demographics of wrestling fans and other diversions. We also actually talk about the show next week, how it will be booked and how much propaganda there will be compared to the first KSA show held earlier this year. Apologies if some of the facts are a little off. We recorded the show a few days after originally scheduled and I did not have all the prep work I had done earlier readily available. Also, this show was recorded with a new program, so there may not sound the same as part shows.

Also, there’s a brief obituary to Keiichiro Kimura, the Japanese animator who passed away recently. He was the animation director and character designer for the classic Tiger Mask cartoon, a favorite of longtime Japanese wrestling fans around the world.

Episode Sixty-Nine - When First We Practice to Deceive

Martin Landau as Rollin Hand.

Martin Landau as Rollin Hand.

On the ever of Star Trek: Discovery debuting, we are pleased to be joined by John Champion (@dvdgeeks), co-host of the Mission Log Podcast, to talk Trek and more. 

We begin by going over the career of Martin Landau, who passed away in July 2017. Lots of Mission Impossible chat here, including some of his most memorable episodes and also some of his other guest star appearances as well as playing Bela Lugosi in Ed Wood. We also mention a number of connections between Mission Impossible and the 1960s Star Trek show, including the overlapping guest stars and address the rumor about Landau possibly being on the list of actors to play Mr. Spock.

This segues into our Trek talk, starting with Mission Log about to wrap up reviewing The Next Generation and moving on to the TNG movies and then Deep Space Nine. And we preview Star Trek: Discovery, starting next week on CBS before moving to CBS' streaming service.  What do we know so far based on the trailer and advanced information? John also lets us now how Mission Log is going to cover an on-going TV show. 

We end with a very nerdy chat about the 1967 Bond movie Casino Royale and why we both love it, despite being "a glorified mess." 

Mission Log Podcast (@missionlogpod), host by John and Ken Ray (@macosken) drops every Thursday wherever you get your podcasts. 

Episode Sixty-Six - Islands in the Stream

NBC's excellent EPL studio cast: host Rebecca Lowe, and analysts Kyle Martino, Robbie Earle and Robbie Mustoe. 

NBC's excellent EPL studio cast: host Rebecca Lowe, and analysts Kyle Martino, Robbie Earle and Robbie Mustoe. 

With some sports media news in the headlines, we are pleased to be joined again by Richard Deitsch (@richarddeitsch) from Sports Illustrated.  We recorded on Operning Day for the English Premier League, so we chat about NBC's near-universal popular coverage as well as their paid app and whether people will purchase.  That seques into a discussion of The Athletic, the paid content sports writing site, their successes so far and would their model work in a city like New York. We talk about ESPN and how necessary they are for a fan whose favorite sports are undercovered (like hockey and soccer). We also discuss where ESPN fits in with Disney's new streaming strategy. We end with some brief wrestling chat, what Richard is enjoying with the current WWE product and being able to wrestling from around the world online. 

We are working lining up some guests to discuss the Premier League and the other European leagues starting up, but were not able to get them in time for today's podcast. Hopefully, they will be on the next episode. Thanks for listening. 

Episode Sixty-Three - Es Un Asunto de Familia

Puma King with his copy of issue six at Break the Barrier 2017.

Puma King with his copy of issue six at Break the Barrier 2017.

If you missed the news a couple weeks ago, issue six of the magazine is now out. It debuted at the Break the Barrier show in Old Forge PA, where Puma and his dad Felino wrestled Guerrero Maya Jr and Skayde. That match was the basis for our cover (by Kcidis) and cover story bios by The Cubs Fan (@luchablog).

To talk about his article in the magazine, we were joined on the pod by Dr. Lucha Steve Sims. We discussed his article on the Alvarado Family (Los Brazos, Maximo, La Mascara), their history and how that related to what happened to Ultimo Guerrero's car, the guys who were and were not fired over the incident and all the things that connect to the incident. We also discuss some of the other big families in lucha right now: The Munoz Family (Rush, Dragon Lee, Mistico and Pierroth), the Ibarra Family (LA Park, Volador Jr, Super Parka), the Panthers (Blue Panther Sr and Jr, The Panther) and of course, the Casas Family (Negro Casas, Felino, Puma, TIger, Dallys, Canelo), There's also other lucha talk, including why hasn't there been any legal action over the vandalism, the usual head scratching involving CMLL booking and talk about the next project coming to the website, a look back at what Rob Viper called CMLL's best tournament ever, the 2014 En Busca De Un Idolo tournament, which involved people like Hechicero, Barbaro Cavernario, Dragon Lee, Cachorro/The Panther and Sobernao Jr.  

After that, we talk about Matt's article on Gino Hernandez's time working in Houston for Pail Boesch. We talk about his matches there, both as a single and a tag team with Tully Blanchard. Unfortunately, Matt was unable to be on the podcast to discuss his article. But if you want to see many of the matches he wrote about and we discussed, you can see them on the NWA Streaming Service (at least as of this writing). 

Then there is a whole mish-mash of subjects, from what wrestling we could watch in the mid-1980s to watching wrestling in college (Steve in Chapel Hill in the 70s, me in Bloomington in the 80s) to a bunch of other stuff. 

For more information on the magazine, check out its page here on the website. 

Episode Forty-Four - O Wretched Man

Pete No so Nice. Don't Call Him the Trapster. Art by Phil Hester. 

Pete No so Nice. Don't Call Him the Trapster. Art by Phil Hester. 

Veteran comics creator Phil Hester (@philhester) joins the show to talk about his recent health issues, the 399kirbys project for the Hero Initiative (@heroinitiative), the upcoming Aftershock book Shipwreck drawn by Phil and written by Warren Ellis (@warrenellis), his current Image series Mythic, now in TPB, drawn by John McCrea (@mccreaman), the giant omnibus collection of The Wretch coming (likely) in 2017, working with Ande Parks (@andeparks) on Green Arrow with Kevin Smith (@thatkevinsmith) and Brad Meltzer (@bradmeltzer), working on Swamp Thing with Grant Morrison (@grant morrisoan) and Mark Millar (@mrmarkmillar), giving us the art for the cover for Odessa Steps Magazine issue 3 featuring the Holy Terror, how his book Firebreather with Andy Kuhn (@andykuhn) went from an Image comic to a Cartoon Network feature and more.

At the end of the show, a brief tribute to the recently deceased Steven Hill, Harry Fujiwara (aka Mr. Fuji) and the legendary Gene Wilder. Condolences to their ffriends and family.

Episode Forty-Three - Girls and Boys

You're my girl, Bleu. Blue Monday: The Kids are Alright  (C) 2106 Chynna Clugston Flores.

You're my girl, Bleu. Blue Monday: The Kids are Alright  (C) 2106 Chynna Clugston Flores.

With Blue Monday finally back in print, we are thrilled to have Chynna Clugston Flores (@chynnasyndrome) on the podcast to talk about the series being reprinted at Image with colors by Jordie Bellaire (@whoajordie), the timetable for reprints and  new material, the return of Scooter Girl, writing the Gotham Academy/Lumberjanes cross-over book, working on DC kids books including the Mad Mod issue of Teen Titans Go, MTV Classics, use of music in Blue Monday, the cyclical nature of fads and culture, silent movies and more. 

Following that, we have a short list of podcast recommendations, including Monday Night Braw (@mondaynightbraw), Between the Sheets and Exile on Badstreet by Kris Zellner (@kriszellner) and David Bixenspan @davidbix), european football podcasts from the Guardian, the Times (of London), Second Captains (@secondcaptains) from the Irish Times,The Men in Blazers (@meninblazers), Talksport's European Football Show, the Jonah Keri Podcast (@jonahkeri) and the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast hosted by RIchard Deitsch (@richarddeitsch) 

Episode Forty-Two - Hitto-ō


It's a celebration of Ichiro's 3000th hit, tempered by the passing on the day of recording of longtime ESPN anchor John Saunders. On the podcast today are Joe Lucia (@Joe_TOC) from Awful Announcing and The Comeback and former ESPN producer Gus Ramsey (@GusRamsey)'

Joe talks about John Saunders (1:29), Ichiro's 3000 hits and his amazing MLB season (5:07), the rash of retiring players this week (15:33), the August 1 trade deadline (21:26), the Aaron Sanchez soap opera in Toronto (22:42), rooting for bad teams (26:46), NBC's Rio Olympics coverage (33:08) and televising internationl futbol in the US (37:45).

Gus discusses John Saunders (48:34), Ichiro (53:00), retiring players (58:10), the Dan and Kieth years on Sportscenter (1:01:06), Sports Night and other depictions of newsrooms in TV and Film (1:05:29), working on the WWE Network's Edge and Christian Show (1:12:24), the state of current WWE (1:26:50), his new Talent Coach service for broadcasters (1:31:31) and the new Madden and other video games (1:39:15).

Episode Thirty-Seven - Sim Sim Sallabim

Here comes trouble. Future Quest 1 by Parker, Shaner and Bellaire. (C) 2016 Hanna-Barbera.

Here comes trouble. Future Quest 1 by Parker, Shaner and Bellaire. (C) 2016 Hanna-Barbera.

Jeff Parker (@jeffparker) joins the show to talk about current and past work. We start with Future Quest, the DC/Hanna-Barbera team-up with Jonny Quest, Space Ghost and a raft of others. We discuss the book's creation, including the role played by Darwyn Cooke and continuing to work with (among others) Doc Shaner (@docshaner) and Jordie Bellaire (@whoajordie), who all worked together on the Shazam Convergence book. We also discuss working on the book with artist Steve Rude (@steverudeart), who drew the 1987 Space Ghost comic. Then, it's on to Batman '66, how the book started, getting image rights to the actors from the TV show, working with artists like Jonathan Case (@Jonathan_Case) and past pod Collen Coover (@colleencoover), the Batman/Man from UNCLE team-up and which villains were the most fun to write. There's also chat about Agents of Atlas, Flash Gordon, the Marvel Adventures books, the story behind the "Galactus playing baseball" in Marvel Adventures 26, Underground, Meteor Men and more. To wrap up, more Jonny Quest talk, including favorite monsters and bad guys, including how to modernize a yellow peril villain like Doctor Zin and the great Jonny Quest documentary on Youtube. 

Episode Thirty-Six - Wing Attack Plan R

He can fly, but he's no Sparrow. Jonathan Pryce in Terry Gilliam's Brazil.

He can fly, but he's no Sparrow. Jonathan Pryce in Terry Gilliam's Brazil.

It's our love letter to the Criterion Collection (@criterion) in all its greatness. We're joined by film critic, comics writer and podcast Will Pfeifer (@willpfeifer) to discuss our favorite Criterions (some you may not even remember) and the just-released Criterion edition of Stanley Kubrick's Dr. Strangelove (spine number 821, for you collectors). We also talk about some of Will's comics work, including Finals with Jill Thompson (@thejillthompson) and H.E.R.O, with Kano (@kano_es). We also discuss Will's movie podcast Out of Theaters (@outoftheaters) that he does with Billy Kulpa (@billykulpa) and Kevin Haas (@kevinmhaas). Will has news about Out of Theaters' future, so stick around to the end of the podcast for that. 

If you thought Dean Wormer was bad. From Finals 1 (c) Will Pfeifer and Jill Thompson

If you thought Dean Wormer was bad. From Finals 1 (c) Will Pfeifer and Jill Thompson

Episode Eighteen - The Author Theory 1

Hopeless Savages Break (C) 2015 Jen Van Meter

Hopeless Savages Break (C) 2015 Jen Van Meter

1:20 - Comics writer Jen Van Meter (@hopelessjen) discusses her @Onipress graphic novel Hopeless Savages Break. We talks about working with artists Meredith McClaren (@inquitousFish) and Christine Norrie (@christinenorrie) on the new book, past volumes of the series drawn by Norrie, Chynna Clugston Flores (@chynnasyndrome) and Bryan Lee O'Malley (@radiomaru), future stories, (9:56) her @ValiantComics series drawn by Roberto de la Torre The Death-Defying Doctor Mirage and (14:00) writing the Injustice Gang back in 2006 in JSA Classified. (17:00) We also talk about the MLS championship won last week by the Portland Timbers & the crazy plays in the match, (24:45) the Timbers being featured in Greg Rucka's (@ruckawriter) Stumptown and (28:10) life as a comics pro living in Portland.


30:55 - Yahoo Sports hockey editor of the Puck Daddy blog and the co-host of Marek vs Wyshynski podcast Greg Wyshynski (@wyshynski) discusses his new book Take Your Eye Off the Puck, its origin and contents, including chapters on fancy stats and cutting edge technology. (43:09) We also talk the current NHL Season, the hot start by Dallas, the slow start by Pittsburgh and Anaheim and Detroit post-Mike Babcock. Then we talk nerd culture, featuring (47:16) the just-finished season of Doctor Who, (57:19) binge TV watching and spoiler culture, (1:01:15) the resurrected MST3K and (1:07:15) new comics, including Saga, Batman and the new Marvel Star Wars books

Episode Nineteen - Cretinous Humanoids


01:56 - Former wrestling manager Scott Bowden (@KFriedRasslin) from Kentucky Fried Rasslin talks the passing of Tommy Gilbert: his career as a wrestler, referee & head of the Gilbert Family with sons Doug and Hot Stuff Eddie Gilbert. We also talk how Eddie turned Scott from ref to manager, Nick Bockwinkel in Memphis and his famous match with Jerry Lawler, Dream Machine Troy Graham, the funeral for the Bruise Brothers, the all-too-brief brief Koko Ware & Bobby Eaton tag team and more.

30:37 - Matt D talks Bockwinkel, his matches in the AWA and other territories, the Dragon Lee vs Kamaitachi feud in CMLL, (49:21) the season finale of Doctor Who, (51:20) comics talk including Art Ops, Doctor Strange, Guardians of Infinity, Spidey, The Vision, Black Knight and Paul Cornell's work at Marvel, James Robinson's work on the Uncanny Avengers Annual, Scarlet Witch, Airboy and Leave It to Chance and (1:03:50) some slighty-spoilery talk about Marvel's Jessica Jones TV show.

Episode Seventeen - What's a Cubit?

The Goddamned. (c) 2015 Golgonooza Inc and rmGu é ra.

The Goddamned. (c) 2015 Golgonooza Inc and rmGuéra.

The Mark Millar/Phil Hester era Swamp Thing. (c) 2015 DC Comics. Cover by John Totleben

The Mark Millar/Phil Hester era Swamp Thing. (c) 2015 DC Comics. Cover by John Totleben

Sargon sketch by Mark Millar at 1996 SD Comicon.

Sargon sketch by Mark Millar at 1996 SD Comicon.

The second part of our interview with Longbox Heroes (@LongboxHeroes) co-host and wrestling commentator Leonard F Chikarason (@LFChikarason), held over from last show. We talk about (!:05) the revival of Mystery Science Theater 3000, when you realize a piece of popular culture is no longer for you, (17:50) Jason Aaron (@jasonaaron) and r.m. Guéra's The Goddamned, Thors and Secret Wars, changing art styles at Marvel and DC, (35:01) a discussion of the Mark Millar (@mrmarkmillar) and Phil Hester (@philhester) run on Swamp Thing, reminiscing about 90s DC buried treasures like Chase, Chronos and Primal Force and (43:09) commiserations and strategies for Marvel Puzzle Quest.

Our planned talk about the late Nick Bockwinkel with magazine contributor Matt had to be postponed due to holiday scheduling issues. It will take place on an upcoming episode.

Episode Fifteen - Heaven Knows Their Recipe

 (0:55) - Roger Bennett (@rogbennett) from the Men in Blazers (@meninblazers) talks about the upcoming Blazer Con this weekend in New York City, the line-up of futbol heavy hitters attending, a conference vs a convention, the implosion of Chelsea, the season so far for Everton, the late Howard Kendall and more,

(16:40) - Magazine contributor Matt D returns to look at the world of popular culture. We talk the season so far for Doctor Who, the Zygon Invasion [episode recorded before the Zygon Inverson aired], the greatness of Peter Capaldi and what could be in store for the season finale. We also talk new comics, including what's caught our eye from the "post-Secret Wars" Marvel books (New Avengers, Spider-Man, Iron Man,...), Greg Rucka (@ruckawriter) and Nicola Scott (@NIcolaScottArt) and the first issue of Black Magick from Image, Gail Simone's (@gailsimone) new Vertigo book and just what is Marvel's best book right now? Hint: It doesn't take place in the 616. Also some quick wrestling talk about what the WWE will do after Seth Rollins' injury forced his being stripped of the world title and what's going on in NXT.

Episode Ten - The Eagle Has Landed

We're very excited to have CMLL luchador Marco Corleone on this episode of the podcast. Hopefully, he will be the first of a number of luchadors who will be appearing on the podcast or in the upcoming issue of Odessa Steps Magazine/Russian Flag Burial. Please check out the new clothing line started by Marco and his partner (and CMLL edecane) Miroslava.

1:06 - CMLL luchador Marco Corleone (@MarcoCorleone23) talks the upcoming Anniversario Show, Atlantis vs Sombra, Ingobernables vs El Bufete del Amor, Air Corleone, his punching prowess, wrestling the Undertaker, CMLL mascots, creating his entrance music and his new clothing line.  

34:33 - The Cubs Fan (@luchablog) talks Anniversario Show build, Dr. Wagner, LA Park, Boby Zavala's win over Guerrero Maya Jr in the En Busca de un Idolo final, the future of Lucha Underground, the 2015 Cubs season, Schwarber-Mania and the Kane County Cougars. Check out the Luchablog and the Luchawiki for all of Cubsfan's hard work. 

Marco, Miroslava and Dark Angel unveil the gongut.com clothing line.

Marco vs the Undertake from 2005

Marco's whiplash injury

Ultimo Guerrero dropkicks Que Monito. Marco is in the tecnico corner.

 "En Busca de un Idolo". Guerrero Maya Jr. Vs Bobby Zavala. 

Episode Seven - And Be a Villain

This week's show mainly features talk about the passing of Roddy Piper. There is also some lucha talk, remember Eric Caiden from Hollywood Book and Poster and a great discussion about Southern Basterds from someone who lives near the real Craw County. Look for a follow-up post with some of the videos posted that were discussed in the show. Thanks for listening.

1:09 - So Cal wrestler Vandal Drummond talks Roddy Piper in LA, the passing of Hollywood Book and Poster owner Eric Caiden, the Luchaworld podcast, and the greatness of Negro Casas.

38:10 - Wrestling historian and radio host Karl Stern talks Piper in Georgia and the Carolinas, reminisces about Nature Boy Buddy Landell and explains the accuracy and greatness of Jason Aaron and Jason Latour's Southern Basterds comic book.

1:16:36 - Matt D talks Piper in Portland, TCM August Under the Stars and recent lucha libre.