Sunday, March 16, 2008

Performer Analysis: Steve Blackman

In Honor of the WWF's incredibly cheesy and insulting hardcore division, I'm analyzing one of it's proud paupers of paper mache bumps.

1) Innovation- 1/10

There's nothing more innovative about Blackman's career than there is about a moldy piece of cheese found on your under your refridgerator. He worked a very basic, boring style; he used a karate gimmick which has been done to death. He never pushed any kind of envelope and he never helped usher in any new style.

2) Conditioning- 4/10

Blackman was in decent shape, never really very big or overweight, but he was constantly injured. Actually, during the early 90's he fought against a severe case of malaria which halted much of his wrestling career. Then, while in WWF, he was plauged with setback after setback eventually forcing him into an early retirement.

3) Skill- 4/10

Blackman's offense was as crisp as fresh dog turd. He had a very basic move set that was heavily relied upon some martial arts skills that weren't very sound. His dedication to the arts didn't translate very well into "entertainment." He was incredibly stiff and rigid and just not any fun to watch. He bumped like a suit of armor and his facials were always the same: stone faced.

4) Psychology- 2/10

Blackman, mostly competing the in the hardcore division rarely had to incorporate psychology into his matches. Take for instance, his big claim to fame, his elbow drop from virtually 4 foot up off of a lighting rigging. He chased Shane McMahon all the way to the top? Well, once your up there, there's really no other place to go, so couldn't he have just waited him out? And then take his "weapons:" he brings little goofy sticks that look like they go to a kid's drum set. Everybody else in the division is using chairs and glass pitchers of Kool-aid, but Blackman brought sticks. They look horribly unrealistic to sell and you have no force behind using them.

5) Interviews- 2/ 10

As with everything else, Blackman was as charismatic a speaker as Wilford Brimley. They kept pairing him up with younger, more energetic partners to play off of his dullness, but even those attempts didn't brighten up his veneer; just made him seem more lifeless.

6) Character- 4/10

As I said earlier, his character was one that had been done to death in the 70's and definitley in the 80's and 90's by Vince. The martial arts expert; They rarely ever get over and are usually made into a big joke by the end of it all; add Blackman to that list. His face and heel characters played almost exactly the same- silent and forgetful.

7) Fans- 4/10

At the time, Blackman had some fans due to the incessant pushing of the hardcore division on every WWE show. But, his time in the spotlight faded due to lack of witty catchphrase, unique gimmick and even in the end, decent talent.

8) Basics- 3/10

Blackman had some basics down but all his technical stuff looked clumsy and amateurish. For all his time in the business, he didn't look very seasoned at all. His strikes were downright shitty but he did have some decent kicks.

9) Match/ Feud- 2/10

Blackman rarely had any feuds and I guess his biggest one was with Shane McMahon. But, it wasn't designed to get Blackman over; it was set up purely so Shane could take another huge bump off of something. Blackman did get to work a gamet of big superstars, such as The Rock, Kurt Angle, Big Show, Vader, British Bulldog, Owen Hart and others in his time, but he never had a feud worth more than 3 weeks of a writer's time.

10) Gutcheck- 5/10

Blackman should get some credit for keep trying to ply his trade and make it into the big time of the world of wrestling. He had an extended case of malaria from working shows in Africa once upon a time, but he did keep striving to break into the big time of World Wrestling Federation, which he did in 1997. He had a decent run there too but really left no mark on the company of any significant measure, despite his desire to get there. Once you get the ball, you have to run with it, not plod along with a gym bag full of useless gimmicks. Words to live by.

Total: 31
Ranking: Jobber
PO: Thumbs down

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