Archive for February 18th, 2010

What the Critics Are Saying About Irvin Muchnick’s ‘CHRIS & NANCY’

“Great read for anyone who cares about wrestling or is interested in true crime.” – Eric Lyden,,

“Muchnick provides a great public service in exposing what he describes as the WWE’s ‘Cocktail of Death.’ Now its up to wrestling fans to demand action, or else continue seeing their heroes die early from avoidable deaths, often ending up destitute after enriching the McMahons.” – Randy Shaw, Beyond Chron,

“The latest from Irv Muchnick, who has already authored one of wrestling’s All Time Top Five books with Wrestling Babylon, is hands down the most important wrestling book in years.” — Critic Derek Burgan,

“Incredibly well researched … an incredibly valuable resource.” – David Bixenspan, SLAM! Wrestling,

“Very few books are ‘good’ and even fewer are ‘important’ – but this book is both.” – Author and blogger Anthony Roberts,

“Muchnick goes where few others care to go.” – Mark Hanzlik, Sacramento News & Review,

“Incredible retelling of the tragic story, with all its odd twists and bizarre turns.” – Rich Tate,,

“Muchnick is hell-bent on discovering the essence of the cover-ups.” – Joe Babinsack,,

“[T]he best book published on the subject to date … Since that day in 2007 I’ve wanted to learn as much as I can about the tragedy and why it happened. If you’re like me then you’ll absolutely love the book.” – Steven Wilson,,

“WWE lawyer Jerry McDevitt read this cover to cover and so should you.” – Alan Wojcik,,

Kelly Kelly Skit Was PG-PG Dumb-Dumb. (And By the Way, WWE Death Touches Her, Too.)

Senate candidate Linda McMahon calls World Wrestling Entertainment’s Raw show, Monday nights on USA cable, the longest-running weekly episodic series on television. When the content is questioned – for example, when her son-in-law Triple H humps a corpse or her husband Vince McMahon forces Trish Stratus to strip down to her panties and crawl on all fours like a dog – Linda explains that the intense pressure of writing weekly soap opera scripts for her “very testosterone-loaded business” sometimes causes WWE to “push the envelope.”

Meet Linda McMahon, your avant-garde candidate to deliberate on Supreme Court appointments and advise and consent on foreign treaties!

On this week’s edition of Raw, the guest host was Jerry Springer, and the opening skit was so immensely stupid that I don’t know of anyone who is defending it. Not women, whom McMahon is supposedly targeting in her campaign. Not wrestling fans, who cringe. Not proponents of  WWE’s suddenly Linda-friendly PG-tagged programming. Methinks there was a quality-control problem here.

In the skit, which I won’t belabor – go find it on YouTube yourself – WWE diva Kelly Kelly discusses getting pregnant while drooling males, from the TV announcers to various comedy-figure wrestlers, vie for the honor of claiming to be the father.

The main reason I bring up all this is that Kelly Kelly (real name Barbara Blank) was the girlfriend of ex-WWE wrestler Andrew “Test” Martin, who died 11 months ago in Florida, at age 33, from an overdose of painkillers.

Martin’s brain, like that of Chris Benoit, was subsequently studied and found to have sustained severe damage from the cranial chair shots and other stunts gleefully marketed by WWE.

When ESPN reported this last December, WWE said, “While this is a new emerging science, the WWE is unaware of the veracity of any of these tests, be it for Chris Benoit or Andrew Martin.” Even though Dr. Joseph Maroon, the company’s “medical director” of “several years” (according to lawyer Jerry McDevitt) had met a year earlier with the doctor, Bennet Omalu, who is spearheading research into a brain-trauma phenomenon he calls Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy.

What people are most asking about from this Monday’s Raw is where mean old Vince McMahon’s feud with lovable Bret Hart is headed, and what it all means for Linda McMahon’s Senate race. I’ll post some thoughts on that tomorrow.

Irv Muchnick

Irv’s Tweets

February 2010