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The Greatest Wrestler Ever Project: Postscript


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#21 El-P

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 08:45 AM

How do you remember all of this ? :)

 

I think I was still around when the Best of WWF/E matches poll happened. I know I was there during the first restart. I remember a Best WCW match poll in which I don't think I tool part in. I began posting here in 2008 so that timeframe makes sense.



#22 anarchistxx

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 09:08 AM

How do you remember all of this ? :)

 

I think I was still around when the Best of WWF/E matches poll happened. I know I was there during the first restart. I remember a Best WCW match poll in which I don't think I tool part in. I began posting here in 2008 so that timeframe makes sense.

 

I have a good memory for pointless and irrelevant information. Wish I had the same powers of retention for knowledge that is actually useful.

 

Smarkschoice was a really good board - there was an excellent balance between serious wrestling posters, people who just liked to joke around off topic, people chatting about music and film, a good spectrum of personalities. PWO is really good in a different way - probably the most 'academic' wrestling board there has ever been, a true archive of information. Would be terrible is a lot of the content on here was lost.

 

Considering the fairly humble beginnings as New Millenium Blues on as I recall some free Proboards server, this board has flourished to be the best wrestling forum on the internet by an absolute country mile.



#23 fxnj

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 09:13 AM

Add me to the list of people who doesn't listen to podcasts and finds it annoying for people to bury their points on 3 hour shows instead of posting them on the board.

#24 NotJayTabb

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 09:21 AM

I've enjoyed some of the podcasts on the GWE, but generally as background noise in 20min chunks. If I've got 3 hours free to spend on wrestling, I'd prefer to just watch some wrestling.

#25 Childs

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 09:41 AM

Add me to the list of people who doesn't listen to podcasts and finds it annoying for people to bury their points on 3 hour shows instead of posting them on the board.

I don't think it's either/or for the most part. The majority of those who recorded podcasts also posted extensively in the threads.

#26 Herodes

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 12:01 PM

I'm a very infrequent poster but I will say that it doesn't set a good precedent for Parv to write essays from afar and have others publish them for him. This place has always been about engaging with the community, defending opinions and debate, and a willingness to be challenged; you should defend your polemic if you've taken them time to write a long form essay about a 2 year process

#27 Ed Zeppelin

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 12:37 PM

I listen to the podcasts on my commute and find them pretty entertaining.  "Where the big boys play"  a witty in-depth examination on NWA/WCW and fun thing  to listen to and relive a bunch of shows I watched while growing up.  I didn't vote in the GWE, I wanted to but honestly found the whole thing really daunting and didn't have the time.   However, I can see where Parv is coming from with his thoughts here.  Pro-wrestling is supposed to be a varied spectacle that appeals to everyone. If you don't like the cruiserweights, maybe you'll enjoy the tag teams, if you don't like the tag teams we have some big heavyweights for you, if you don't like them well maybe some hardcrore wrestling, etc..  but I get his point - it's hard watch a Memphis Brawl and have some crazy work rate match in the back of your head that you need to compare it to.  



#28 jdw

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 03:51 PM

I'm a very infrequent poster but I will say that it doesn't set a good precedent for Parv to write essays from afar and have others publish them for him. This place has always been about engaging with the community, defending opinions and debate, and a willingness to be challenged; you should defend your polemic if you've taken them time to write a long form essay about a 2 year process

 

It's more than a bit odd.



#29 The Thread Killer

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 04:58 PM

Either more than a bit odd, or one giant leaping case of "hey everybody look at me."



#30 funkdoc

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 05:09 PM

i've actually listened to most of the GWE podcasts, and all of Titans.  i mostly gravitate toward Kris's & Bix's stuff these days though.

 

the thing yall are missing here is that podcasts have replaced radio for a lot of us.  they're what get us through workouts and long drives and our jobs.  they're not normally something you listen to with nothing else going on, they're background material.

 

compared to wrestling i'd say the death of forums is much more real in other communities i've been involved with, so it's interesting to see that topic come up now.  it probably will happen eventually, though, which will make GWE-type projects a challenge.  i guess you'd have to resort to Reddit (or Something Awful if you want "quality control" via a paywall).

 

i think live streams are a nice happy medium here - similar to podcasts but much more social since they allow viewers to chat with you in real time.  i would like to see more wrestling shows use this type of format in the future, but there aren't a lot of major streaming sites that would work.  there's Youtube streaming but i forget if there are big barriers to entry there.

 

also Twitter can actually be great but it's real tough to figure out who's worth paying attention to.  the advantage over forums is that instead of dealing with moderators playing favorites, you get to be your own moderator.  there's a reason so many marginalized groups have gravitated toward it.



#31 Ship Canal

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 05:33 PM

i've actually listened to most of the GWE podcasts, and all of Titans.  i mostly gravitate toward Kris's & Bix's stuff these days though.

 

the thing yall are missing here is that podcasts have replaced radio for a lot of us.  they're what get us through workouts and long drives and our jobs.  they're not normally something you listen to with nothing else going on, they're background material.

 

 

Yep, spot on. In fact, I sometimes take this to extremes and say I'm just pausing an episode of a TV show to go and make a cup of tea, I'll dip back into whichever podcast I'm working through at the time. Its only about five minutes, but its five minutes that could be informative or worthwhile. There is barely a single household chore or even a brief trip over the road to the newsagents/off licence that I don't soundtrack with a podcast of some kind. I listen to them at night as I'm drifting off to sleep and when I'm get ready for work the next day, while I'm in the shower...

That probably seems absolutely preposterous to some people, but there you go. Just a demonstration of what funkdoc was talking about. And I should also point out that my podcast habit isn't confined to pro wrestling podcasts - if there is something I am interested in, even vaguely, I probably subcribe to a podcast about it. 

The only time I ever listen to live radio or watch live TV is when a major news event is taking place, or for football matches. 



#32 ohtani's jacket

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 06:06 PM

Even playing in the background I dunno if I could get through 70 hours of GWE podcasts. 



#33 Matt D

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 06:17 PM

Even playing in the background I dunno if I could get through 70 hours of GWE podcasts. 

Probably for the best because it means I can get away with having said certain things that only you or Jetlag could call me on.



#34 Ship Canal

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 06:23 PM

 

compared to wrestling i'd say the death of forums is much more real in other communities i've been involved with, so it's interesting to see that topic come up now.  it probably will happen eventually, though, which will make GWE-type projects a challenge.  i guess you'd have to resort to Reddit (or Something Awful if you want "quality control" via a paywall).

 

How very historically determinist of you funkdoc  :P



#35 funkdoc

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 06:38 PM

i've actually been thinking about this a lot lately because i have ideas for a similar project with arcade games.  it would be a shameless ripoff of the PWO yearbooks, but with MAME ROMs for each year and people giving their thoughts as they play them.  i just have no idea what the central hub for something like that would be...yall here are lucky.



#36 JerryvonKramer

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 07:17 PM

I don't want people to think I'm being aloof. This will be my final GWE-related post.
 

To put it as concisely and as dispassionately as possible: there are some stunning mischaracterizations of what actually went down in the discussions as a part of this process. It's hard to tell how much of this is straw and how much of it is sheer lack of empathy; either way, pretty much everything that I found grating, petty and disappointing about GWE (which has otherwise been very rewarding to me as a fan) is not only present here, but in full plumage. An unflattering victory lap.


Sorry you feel that way. Well, it's over now.
 

I thought this was a terrific read that summarized many points and thoughts along the way throughout the GWE process. Perhaps I'm alone, perhaps many agree, but I found myself nodding in agreement at various points throughout and appreciate the thought and sentiment that went into it.


Thanks
 

Parv, you address the influence of people like Dylan and Matt and others in promoting "niche picks", but do you feel that you were influential in on the other side of the pendulum? For example, you weren't the high vote on Ted. Do you feel as though your defense of your admitted favorites created a bias that was equally present but perhaps less noticeable because the influence was leaning toward workers from a period that the silent majority was already going to represent (although perhaps not as highly in some cases)?


I've seen a few people say they submitted ballots as a direct result of listening to the WTBBP countdown show. And a few others say that they were actually swayed by the five-part mini-series on Flair. A modicum of influence. But as I said, I think influence has limits.
 

I'm amused by the fact that a fellow lawyer had so much influence on Parv's thinking about this project simply by articulating a very basic legal concept, which in turn Parv used to formulate his process to rank wrestlers for the GWE project. Because I'm a newcomer to the PWO forum, I have no baggage to carry, but this article brings out many bones of contention between various types of voters. Biases are alleged; the author demonstrates some of his own.


This was my aim. Just tried to summarise what was discussed. I wear my biases on my sleeve and most people around here know about them. No point pretending otherwise.
 

I liked it for how he tries to bridge the gap between the subjectivity/objectivity debates. To me, the talk of being objective when making value judgements on the quality of someone's sounded ridiculous. The legal analogy made a lot of sense in explaining what someone might mean when talking about "objectivity" in wrestling.


Thanks.
 

In my opinion there has to be a challenge to conventional wisdom every step of the way otherwise you end up with discourse that amounts to "man, Ric Flair is awesome, and Terry Funk too." If you look through the list there are numerous workers who've benefited from challenges to conventional wisdom, and a few that have been hurt as well, but the greatest accomplishment of the list was in those victories not Flair holding out against the heathens. Not every challenge against conventional wisdom is something people are going to agree with, but I can't imagine watching a whole bunch of wrestling, particularly from the same wrestler, without thinking about somebody else's take on it or trying to form your own. Which isn't to say I can't enjoy wrestling for enjoyment's sake, I'm specifically referring to these GWE discussions. A lot of newer or younger fans talked about discoveries and journeys but for those of us who've around a while it was more about new takes and revisiting older stuff from a different perspective. It was about how much we've changed in the last 10 years and how that's reflected in our tastes and the stuff we like now vs. the stuff we used to like. People came to this project from different backgrounds and vastly different starting bases.

That's what I dislike the term "niche" pick. If you've stopped following the modern product and spent the past 10-15 years watching nothing but older wrestling (with few exceptions), and you have a broad viewing experience, then there are precious little in the way of niche picks in the entire top 500. I could say that modern puro picks are niche picks but it's only because I haven't seen any modern puro. Niche picks are simply undiscovered workers that people haven't gotten to. The idea that Negro Casas is a niche pick (to choose an example) is ridiculous. I don't care how little people think of lucha or how much they prefer mainstream American wrestling or classic Japanese wrestling, Negro Casas is not a niche pick. A guy way on the outside like Pat Roach? Yeah, maybe, but Pat Roach is an oversight not some rare recording or unheard album. Fringe picks exist, but some of the people whom were named niche picks was ridiculous.

Another pet peeve was acting like it's okay to challenge conventional wisdom on Ronnie Garvin but sacrilegious to do it to Flair or Jumbo. Everybody should be open to the same criticism.

Finally, I think people took the list a bit too seriously. In 2006 people who watched a lot of tapes and people who tried their hand at being match reviewers got together and shot off a list. There were arguments and debates, but I don't think we were trying to create something that would be left behind for future generations to discover. Listmaking was popular at the time. That ended up shifting to viewing projects, which in turn fell by the wayside. Now it's podcasts that are all the rage. I'm not trying to belittle the hours upon hours of effort that went into this list, but the overall tone from the piece of how important it was that Flair finished No.1 is maybe not the victory lap it was referred to but meaningless in the grand scheme of how Flair is viewed now and forever basically.


I don't disagree with much in this post. I wish we could have less loaded terms than "niche" and "contrarian". I would prefer neutral descriptive terms rather than ones that sound like a value judgement.
 

Yeah, about those "niche" picks. Takada was arguably the biggest draw in Japan at one point. Zenjo was packing Budokan during it's peak years. "Niche" is a patronizing term.


I want it to be descriptive, not patronizing. If you took it as patronizing, I'm sorry.
 

PROTIP: "hipster" isn't a real thing

Yeah it is. I've actually known multiple people who actively call themselves that, and are proud of being hipsters.


I put the word in scare quotes for a reason.
 

I don't believe that was the context that Parv was using niche in at all. He was referring to hipsters and "boring" vs. "exciting."


It was both contexts at once really. Niche as in "lesser seen". The words "niche" and "mainstream" seemed to be used increasingly in the reveal reaction threads.

But there is also the "explorer" aspect and the excitement of the discovered lost gem. I get that excitement by the way. I just never believed that it had much to do with GWE. Jim Breaks was a new discovery for a lot of people. It's more exciting to discover a worker like that than it is to think about a guy you've watched for 20 years. It shouldn't have a bearing on the rankings either way. I think it did, both ways.
 

Of course not. Parv is an orthodox.

BTW, the fact he didn't post his reaction to the GWE result over here is telling that pro-wrestling boards are a thing of the past. We're all relics. Today is all about podcast's and Twitterss and shit.


Two things:

1. No I'm not an "orthodox". I've spent my entire academic career railing against orthodoxy. However, I do look for balance and am often moderate in my positions. Revisionist praise sometimes goes too far (see "Akira Taue is better than Kobashi"), revisionist criticism sometimes gets overstated (see Dory Funk Jr, Shawn Michaels, etc.).

2. No. It was a 5,000-word essay. PTBN has long and strong links to this site. Many articles have been published and shared this way. What are you talking about here? Nonsense.
 

What I really wanted to say about "niche picks" is that I don't think there were that many obscure picks up and down the board. I could come up with far more obscure names than were voted for and I'm sure many others could do the same. Even if you look at niche picks as a sub genre that didn't receive much support, it's still what Parv would refer to as the "silent minority" since he's such a huge believer in consensus. I'd love to know what the hipster picks were that made the top 150.


There weren't any. I was talking about discourse not results.
 

Is anyone actually listening to these Podcasts though, or are they just vanity projects for those heavily involved in the project to discuss things among themselves? I can't think of anything worse than listening to three hours of wrestling discussion, especially since if it was written down in text form on a board you could read through it in twenty minutes.


This is entirely irrelevent to the essay I wrote. The PWO-PTBN feed gets on average about 8,000 listens a week. 10,000 on a good week, 12+ on a great week.

I have very detailed breakdowns of these stats if you want them.

Every GWE show did over 1,000 plays.

I have a Shakespeare podcast where shows routinely get in the region of 47 plays, I believe that these stats are real. Take a little look around. There are also people who joined these forums as a direct result of listening to these shows. I don't know why you said this to be honest.

All of this stuff is not relevent to the essay I wrote here.
 

Niche little corners of the internet should be preserved. They have far more heart and soul than a million Twitter feeds sending out worthless sentences into the ether.

This, I couldn't agree more. I hate the Twitter "culture".


This is also not relevent to the essay. But, by the by, I largely agree with this.
 

Add me to the list of people who doesn't listen to podcasts and finds it annoying for people to bury their points on 3 hour shows instead of posting them on the board.


Most of the podcasters have in the region of 10,000+ posts on this board, so I don't really get this.

The guys who did shows, by and large, were also the guys who posted the most during the project. What is all this stuff about podcasts? Some people listen, some don't. So what? Who's cares?
 

I'm a very infrequent poster but I will say that it doesn't set a good precedent for Parv to write essays from afar and have others publish them for him. This place has always been about engaging with the community, defending opinions and debate, and a willingness to be challenged; you should defend your polemic if you've taken them time to write a long form essay about a 2 year process

I'm a very infrequent poster but I will say that it doesn't set a good precedent for Parv to write essays from afar and have others publish them for him. This place has always been about engaging with the community, defending opinions and debate, and a willingness to be challenged; you should defend your polemic if you've taken them time to write a long form essay about a 2 year process


It's more than a bit odd.



This is clearly an exceptional case. It was a 5,000-word essay. I don't know if you can even make a post that is 5,000 words long.

Sorry if anyone didn't like the fact that I posted this on PTBN rather than directly here.
 

Either more than a bit odd, or one giant leaping case of "hey everybody look at me."


No. I summed up my thoughts about a 2-year project. This is a insulting post from you that makes me think "yeah, that guy isn't very nice".
 

Even playing in the background I dunno if I could get through 70 hours of GWE podcasts.


By the by, I do a lot of listening driving in my car and a little like funkdoc doing chores like cooking or the dishes.

-----------------------

Right. It's over. Thank fuck.

#37 jdw

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Posted 03 May 2016 - 11:14 AM

hqdefault.jpg

 

 

This will be my final GWE-related post.


This is a cool new gimmick you're rolling out in several threads: swear off posting about a subject ever again, only come back into it within a few hours.



#38 Loss

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Posted 03 May 2016 - 12:17 PM

Haha, and jdw, you posting that is a pretty transparent attempt to get him back. You like him, admit it. :)



#39 jdw

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Posted 03 May 2016 - 06:28 PM

Loss: I posted it almost 2 *days* and dozens of posts after he came back. ;)



#40 I Broke Bruno's Neck

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Posted 19 July 2016 - 05:00 PM

I question on how Mad Dog Vachon is at #501 and Tom friggin' Zenk is at #447 or something like that. It appears people through darts at a board and made picks that way.






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