Friday, September 28, 2012

My Top 50 Favourite Sega Mega Drive Games: #40 - #31

Hidie hi. We’re 10 out of 50 games through my Top 50 Favourite Mega Drive games. Let’s get straight to it with the next batch!

#40 – Zombies Ate My Neighbors
Released: 1993 (1994 in the UK)
Genre: Action
Rating: ***3/4
Best Moment: Nothing particularly, it’s just a fun game and avoiding those zombies for as long as possible is a great hook.
This game is a cult classic; it wasn’t that popular when it came out. I didn’t play it for a while even after getting my Mega Drive but it’s a damn good game; it’s very entertaining and its simple concept works wonders really, shoot the zombies, avoid getting hit. One of the best things about the game for me is the difficulty; they have it spot on, with the game starting off very easily and it gets steadily harder from then on. This game is still more than playable today, so give it a go if you haven’t played it before, I doubt you’ll be disappointed.

#39 - Sylvester and Tweety in Cagey Capers
Released: 1993 (1994 in the UK)
Genre: Platformer
Rating: ***3/4
Best Moment: This game was quite hard, so catching Tweety at the end of a level makes all the frustrations worth it.
I don’t know that many people that have played this game. I can’t even remember how I found it, I may have borrowed it from a friend but I can’t be sure. What I do remember is grinding through its difficulty and getting very far in it. Basically you’re Sylvester and you simply have to catch Tweety. But the levels are long and Tweety teases you throughout the level with opportunities to catch him but you’re always unsuccessful until right at the end... when he runs away again. It was a very entertaining game, very hard but entertaining enough and definitely worth a crack at if you’ve never played it before.

#38 – Flicky
Released: 1991
Genre: Action
Rating: ***3/4
Best Moment: Getting all of the birds in one go flawlessly. Nothing can beat it, and it get so hard to do that quite early on in honesty and becomes almost impossible later!
Flicky is often considered a really annoying game, mainly for its one song throughout the game which is very squeaky and loud in sound. But what people need to remember is that this game actually came out in 1984 originally, not 1991. The early eighties were full of games with only one song and simple game play. And you know what? This game was still great enough in 1991, 7 years later. And a lot happened in those 7 years in video game history, and for a game of that era to still be more than playable on the Mega Drive shows you how good it was. So think about that if you do take a distaste to this game, because it’s still a very good game, even by Mega Drive’s standards.

#37 – Taz in Escape from Mars
Released: 1994
Genre: Action
Rating: ***3/4
Best Moment: Just holding onto the action button and making Taz spin over and over again is fun, especially when you build enough momentum to go up walls.
Taz in Escape from Mars is a great game, it’s quite hard as well mind, but the difficulty is tolerable enough to make the game entertaining. Playing as Taz is a lot of fun as his spin is just a great weapon and also used in a variety of other ways too. Another great thing about Taz is that he just eats everything and anything in front of him, for good or bad. The animations for Taz are fantastic and look just as good as Taz does on the cartoons. This game if you haven’t played it before is worth a spin... no pun intended!

#36 – Aladdin
Released: 1993
Genre: Platformer
Rating: ***3/4
Best Moment: Sounds weird saying it but dying. I love the dying animation in Aladdin, it’s one of the funniest death animations in video game history, or at least, it felt like it was back when the game came out!
Aladdin is a great platformer, the music is just spot on from the film and it stands out from other platformers because it plays very differently. Controlling Aladdin feels a little uneasy at first and fighting with him even more so, but once you get the hang of it the experience Aladdin brings to the table is great. The graphics are splendid and the humour throughout the game is just awesome. You just simply have to play this game if you’re a fan of the film, it does complete justice.

#35 - Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle
Released: 1989 (1990 in the UK)
Genre: Platformer
Rating: ***3/4
Best Moment: Honestly, landing a jumping kick! It’s a really hard technique and often leads to your death, so when you land it it’s actually quite satisfying.
Alex Kidd, what a game... a game full of agro, irritation and frustration, but overall, it’s also a very good platformer. The ideas are there and for the most part the game is actually quite fun. But the one-touch death, the sometimes annoying music and some of the timing being harshly out of your favour can get to you. Alex Kidd was once the mascot of Sega before Sonic came along. It’s funny but it’s true, but now Alex Kidd is a bit of a punchline due to the game being rather cheesy and hard at the same time. But don’t take away the good points; this game is still very good.

#34 – Sonic 3D

Released: 1996
Genre: Platformer
Rating: ****
Best Moment: Getting all the Flickies in one go through the hoop. It’s not always that hard but it’s still satisfying to get the full multiplier.
The first Sonic game to make the Top 50... you’d be stupid to think it’d be the last! Sonic 3D is a mixed bag. Firstly, it’s not 3D, and that’s been something that fans have taken the piss out of many a time. It’s an isometric 2D platformer set at a 3D angle. But this game gets a lot of criticism and most of it stems from the false advertisement of 3D gaming. But take that fib out of the equation and what you have here is a very unique Sonic experience. It’s actually a solid game; the addition of Flickies was a nice touch and the music is just top notch. The music in Sonic 3D is some of the finest in video game history in honesty. The Special Stages were a tad too easy and too similar to those in Sonic 2 but overall this game is really good, better than it gets credit for.

#33 – Streets of Rage 3

Released: 1994
Genre: Beat ‘em Up
Rating: ****
Best Moment: The huge relief of satisfaction when you finally beat Mona and Lisa. In my honest opinion, there’s never been a harder boss in all three Streets of Rage games.
Streets of Rage 3 is so hard. It’s one of the hardest games on the Mega Drive, that’s a given. It’s far harder than the first two, which I can complete with my eyes closed. I’ve never legitimately beat Streets of Rage 3 without cheating, and Easy mode doesn’t count as you don’t get the full game. I take nothing away from SoR3 in the respect that it’s a great game, but it’s huge difficulty increase puts me off playing it over the other two. The improvements are great; the moves are better and more complex, the music is as solid as the other two games and the storyline progress through the levels are all fantastic. But... it’s just too hard! It’s still a great game though.

 #32 - Ayrton Senna's Super Monaco GP II
Released: 1992
Genre: Racing
Rating: ****
Best Moment: Just winning a race. It can sometimes be difficult, leading a race, then staying consistent throughout the course lap after lap. It’s nice when your game plan comes together.
Super Monaco GP II was a great racing game. It improved in every way over the original, but I just prefer the original’s races and format of the Tournament mode. But I’m not taking anything away from this sequel and the addition of such a legendary name in the sport as Ayrton Senna boosts its credibility immensely. Taking Senna on is also quite cool, as he was simply a phenomenal F1 driver in his time, and for him to have his own game is quite cool. And it’s a great game, if I were to recommend you play SM GP 1 or 2 it’d have to be this one, because in honesty it’s pure nostalgia and preference that I like the first one more.

#31 – Lemmings
Released: 1992
Genre: Puzzle
Rating: ****
Best Moment: Making sure every Lemming that can survive, does survive. It’s the ultimate compliment, especially with the later levels. You feel bad enough killing off the ones that have to die never mind ones that don’t!
Ah... Lemmings. What a game that was. There are few games that were released at the right place at the right time, that deserve more relevance today but just don’t fit in a modern gaming era. Lemmings was just awesome. Watching all of your Lemmings work their arses off, doing the jobs that you grant them to do, working so well as a team is just so cool. You almost have sentimental feelings for each and every one, even give them all names... okay maybe not that far, but still, you just feel so bad when you have to kill them off. You want them all to survive each level – none of them deserve any other fate than to make it through each level alive. And it’s so tragic when you kill off ones that could have made it!

Continue reading the listing!

For the latest updates on my work, follow me on Facebook and Twitter here!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

My Top 50 Favourite Sega Mega Drive Games: #50 - #41

Hey there and welcome to my newest video game listing. I’ve done a few large listings on this site, but not one on video games in general. Today I start my homage to the Sega Mega Drive and its brilliance.

The Sega Mega Drive while not the first console I ever played, was the first console I properly ever owned. I was a late comer to games as well, only getting the Sega Mega Drive back in 1998 unbelievably. I wasn’t that big on games until then, and even though the Mega Drive was mine from 1998, I quickly appreciated its excellence. I may have played it later than everyone else, but I approached each game like it was released when it was released, because I never really dealt with games as good as those before. It was a year later before I discovered late again, the Playstation, and moved onto that console. But despite discovering the PS, I still played my Mega Drive, discovered other games and appreciated them despite moving onto 3D games with much bigger experiences. Overall the Playstation is definitely my favourite console of all time, but the Mega Drive isn’t far behind. It truly was a phenomenal console and deserves any praise it gets.

This is going to be a 50 day listing. Now I’ve been reluctant to do another 50 day listing again after doing one 50 and one 100 day listing in the past with mixed results, but I’ve decided I will make another attempt at one. There are two reasons why I’m making this a 50 day listing; firstly because I believe a list like this is worthy of 50 days coverage. It’s rare that I do a 50 listing as I said; I’m reluctant to do them anymore, so I’m going to pick and choose them wisely. This deserves it. Secondly, it’s because of my personal situation; I’m going through a lot at the moment, just started a new job, moved house, separated from my wife and we also have a newborn and our near-four year old to take care of separately. I just don’t have the time to write much at the moment, so the idea is to stretch this project forward and hopefully make time in the 50 days to write more quality work.

Enough about that, here’s my Top 50 Favourite Mega Drive games! Enjoy!

#50 – Columns III

Released: 1993 (2008 in the UK)
Genre: Puzzle
Rating: ***1/2
Best Moment: Nothing particularly, it’s very colourful though. Playing against up to 4 people can be fun.
Columns III probably missed most of you, if you lived in the UK. It was released in America and Japan, and only saw release 15 years later in the UK when released on the Virtual Console on the Wii. But... I confess. I played this on Emulator. And it’s really good. Is it an improvement on Columns? Yes, overall I’d say so actually. But it lacks the nostalgia and classic touch that the original has. I’ve never played Columns II so I can’t comment on that, but the third game was fun, as it added a more competitive element, whilst it looked pretty damn gorgeous for 1993 graphics as the colours stand out really well.

#49 - World Cup Italia '90
Released: 1990
Genre: Sports
Rating: ***1/2
Best Moment: When you score, and you get the still of a man celebrating. It’s the same man each time, just with different skin colours and jerseys. It’s truly awful but I love it.
That’s my opinion on this game in general actually. It’s truly awful but I love it. This game has the privilege of being the first Mega Drive game I ever played. As I said, I got my console in 1998 and it was part of the Mega 6 collection that had much better games on it too. All six games make this list, and this is the lowest rated of the six. This game is pretty poor overall, but then again, in 1990 there weren’t that many good quality football games. That would be the case for a few years yet, before FIFA really got off the map. But it’s still playable if not a little too easy once you know how to play properly. It still has a good place in my heart and is fun to stick on once in a while, for giggles more than anything else.

#48 – Virtua Fighter 2
Released: 1996
Genre: Fighting
Rating: ***1/2
Best Moment: Knocking your opponent out of the ring. It can be difficult in the later difficulties and you feel pretty good when you pull it off.
This game was released on the new Sega Saturn console that was the hottest thing around at the time, but because the Mega Drive was still really popular they released a version of it on there. It was definitely inferior, but still packed a decent punch. The Virtua Fighter series had a lot of fans, and still does, maybe I’m rating the game too low for some of you on this list but it’s because I’m just not that big a fan of the series. One thing though for certain, it’s possible this game had the best graphics of any Mega Drive game due to its very late release in the life of the console and its actual spot on the Sega Saturn.

#47 – Jurassic Park

Released: 1993
Genre: Action
Rating: ***3/4
Best Moment: Beating the first level! Seriously, this game was so tough, playing it for the first time good luck beating the first level, never mind progressing far on your first go!
This game was really good, really really good. But it was tough as nails. It’s one of the hardest games I remember ever playing. It was fun though, and they did the Jurassic Park film justice in honesty. The dinosaurs are tough in different ways and the game looks fantastic. The game is definitely worth a go if you haven’t played it before. But as I’ve said a few times, it’s a really hard game!

#46 – Road Rash 3: Tour de Force
Released: 1995
Genre: Racing
Rating: ***3/4
Best Moment: Just knocking someone off their bike. It’s a great feeling; it’s what made Road Rash stand out from other motorbike games.
The Road Rash games were all pretty decent, although the differences between the three released on the Mega Drive was minimal. I remember preferring the third one the most, as they had a good selection of weapons, looked slickest and I liked the fact that there were 7 tracks to race on but that you only go through 5 of them, depending on how you play the game. It gave the never changing formula a bit of diversity, as the games barely changed from one to another.

#45 - FIFA International Soccer
Released: 1993 
Genre: Sports 
Rating: ***3/4 
Best Moment: Scoring. Scoring was awesome as you ran towards the crowd and look at the titantron which had some cool little images put across it. You could also make random noises on screen by pressing the buttons on your controller.
Ah, the FIFA series. So long and illustrious. But things didn’t start off to great for the game series. Football quite simply, wasn’t a very good video game in the 2D eras of video game history. But FIFA was very successful despite this, mainly because of its brand name as the governing body of world football. FIFA International Soccer can be called FIFA 94, not that it matters, but the subsequent FIFA games barely changed anything in the blueprint this game had. The graphics were almost identical, the teams were only slightly updated. I know some of you may think, “yes but the same applies to FIFA now on a yearly basis”, but trust me, enough tweaks are made per year nowadays in comparison to the early days. That’s why the original, FIFA International Soccer, is the only game in this list, as it’s the original and probably the best.

#44 – Mega Bomberman
Released: 1994
Genre: Action
Rating: ***3/4
Best Moment: Timing is impeccable in this game, and when you time to release that bomb on that enemy and they walk into it in the most perfect of timing, you feel so good inside.
There were games in the Bomberman series released before this and after this but for me, this is the best one. The plot was simple enough, the graphics were colourful and bright, and the action and powerups were good. The enemies and bosses were fun and diverse too. But the Bomberman series has always had its flaws, and I’ve always thought while the concept is good, it’s nothing really mind blowing. Also you can’t help hate yourself when you screw up and trap yourself in a corner with a bomb. Man, very few games make you feel like worse of a fool I can tell you! But Mega Bomberman was pretty damn good, and I’d recommend this game in the series over any other. Mistake!

#43 – Golden Axe III 
Released: 1993 (2009 in the UK)
Genre: Beat ‘em Up
Rating: ***3/4
Best Moment: Even by the third game in the series, using the magic is still awesome and is the highlights of the game.
The third Golden Axe game also wasn’t released in the UK, until it was put on the Sega Mega Ultimate Collection a few years ago. Yes... I also played this on emulator... am I a bad person? Anyway... similar to other game series in this list, Golden Axe also suffers from a lack of change in its sequels. Once again like other game series, Golden Axe’s trilogy is great, none of the three games are bad, but very little separates them. Golden Axe II isn’t in this list marginally, but the third was better and the first was the best. The best thing that GA3 did was add pathways that you could select and continue the game down. It made the game experience that bit more personal as you could have had a different set of levels to progress through one play through from the next. But the core game play never changed really, and that’s why it’s this low in the listing.

#42 – Micro Machines
Released: 1993
Genre: Racing
Rating: ***3/4
Best Moment: Nothing beats the awesome air time you get on certain jumps in a race. It just feels awesome. Also, using the tanks and blowing up the other tanks by shooting them down was fun as hell.
Micro Machines was a great series of games. The toy company really did have a great formula and a great concept in the early part of the nineties. Unfortunately technology and 3D gaming occurred and their style of game play died because it never fit in a modern video game environment.  But the top-down view made the games a very interesting experience. The first in the series wasn’t the best, but the formula was there and they just improved on that later on. The first Micro Machines game is definitely worth playing though, it’s a damn good game.

#41 – Columns
Released: 1990
Genre: Puzzle
Rating: ***3/4
Best Moment: When playing Arcade mode and you get the big triple diamond jewels, they could be a real life saver and if placed on a ground tile, you get a huge points boost!
Columns is a classic game. Sure, Tetris may be the king of puzzle games, but if you had a Sega Mega Drive I’d be almost certain you had played Columns at least once. It’s simple concept, very iconic music inspired by Greek mythology and two player competitive play that made the game so popular. Sure, it’s not the most original puzzle game ever, but it was the most approachable and popular. And it ticks all the boxes that a puzzle game should.

Continue reading the listing!

For the latest updates on my work, follow me on Facebook and Twitter here!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Mixtape: Best of Mindless Self Indulgence

Hey there and welcome to another one of my Mixtapes, this time showing you my favourite songs by Mindless Self Indulgence. When I usually do band specific Mixtapes they're usually celebrating them without promoting their singles. The reason why I do this is because their singles are usually their most popular songs, and chances are, you've heard them already. So to try and further show how great that artist is, I delve into their non-singles, pick out my favourite songs, and hope that you love those songs and further enjoy that artist.

This time though I'm including singles. Why? Two reasons. One, Mindless Self Indulgence aren't very popular, unfortunately. I made a call on this site around 18 months ago that MSI would eventually get the recognition they deserve; they're an incredibly underrated band that have a sound and image that is distinctive to the trite that's around metal in general today. I still stand by that statement, I truly think one day they'll get that recognition. Talent like that is hard to come by, and all it will take is one major release to get some fantastic mainstream attention, then they'll get that recognition. Secondly, they haven't released that many singles. They've only released 12 singles, and 6 of those were from their last album. So I thought I'd consider all of their songs, and funnily enough, of those 12 singles only 6 actually make the list anyway.

Don't know much about Mixtapes? Here are the rules. 

A Mixtape is a playlist of a certain genre, band or era. The list is generally 80 minutes long, the same length of a blank CD, with further recommendations if some of the songs aren't to your taste. Remember kids, downloading is wrong! 

So here we go! Here's a list of my favourite Mindless Self Indulgence songs!
In brackets are the albums each track is taken from.
Also, this Mixtape is now available to listen to fully on YouTube so subscribe to me if you want to listen to it properly. Enjoy!
  1. Shut Me Up (You'll Rebel to Anything)
  2. Money (If)
  3. Kill the Rock (Frankenstein Girls Will Seem Strangely Sexy)
  4. Bite Your Rhymes (Tight)
  5. Bomb This Track (If)
  6. Alienating Our Audience (Despierta Los Niños)
  7. What Do They Know? (You'll Rebel to Anything)
  8. Dickface (Tight)
  9. Faggot (Frankenstein Girls Will Seem Strangely Sexy)
  10. Prom (You'll Rebel to Anything)
  11. Joke (Despierta Los Niños)
  12. On It (If)
  13. I'm Your Problem Now (Frankenstein Girls Will Seem Strangely Sexy)
  14. Molly (Tight)
  15. Mastermind (If)
  16. Clarissa (Frankenstein Girls Will Seem Strangely Sexy)
  17. Brooklyn Hype (Part One) (Despierta Los Niños)
  18. Two Hookers and an Eightball (You'll Rebel to Anything)
  19. Get it Up (If)
  20. Pussy All Night (Tight)
  21. Bitches (Frankenstein Girls Will Seem Strangely Sexy)
  22. Lights Out (If)
  23. Stupid MF (You'll Rebel to Anything)
  24. Wack! (Despierta Los Niños)
  25. Masturbates (Frankenstein Girls Will Seem Strangely Sexy)
  26. Bring the Pain (Tight)
  27. Evening Wear (If)
  28. Backmask (Frankenstein Girls Will Seem Strangely Sexy)
  29. Capitol P (Despierta Los Niños)
  30. You'll Rebel to Anything (As Long as it's Not Challenging) (You'll Rebel to Anything)
  31. Tight (Tight)
Don't like some of these? Give these five a try...
  1. London Bridge (Frankenstein Girls Will Seem Strangely Sexy)
  2. Jx-47 (Tight)
  3. Bullshit (You'll Rebel to Anything)
  4. Issues (If)
  5. Played (Frankenstein Girls Will Seem Strangely Sexy) 
If you're wondering why I'm making this list it's to promote one of my favourite bands, a band that I find terribly underrated. But also, because I'm seeing them in around a month's time. I can't wait. Seriously, give this band a listen if you haven't heard them before, they're terribly underrated.That's it from me, have a good day!

If you liked this article you might want to read:

For the latest updates on my work, follow me on Facebook and Twitter here!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

The Mercy Side: I'm Going to Disneyland!

Here's my first wrestling article in nearly two months. Enjoy.

I may not be writing as often as I used to anymore but that’s because of time, not because of my lack of interest in doing it. I still play video games, listen to music, watch football games and watch wrestling. I just don’t often get the chance to jot my thoughts down on anything anymore, which is a shame. But in the wrestling world, one of the most intriguing, most entertaining, and most unpredictable storylines in recent memory is the program that’s occurring between Kane and Daniel Bryan.

I’m a huge Kane fan. I have been for a long time. And while Daniel Bryan individually is by far my favourite wrestler at the moment, and has been for about half a year now, this article is actually in homage to Kane. You see, Kane is a character and wrestler who is always overlooked by both his peers and the younger talent. Back in the late nineties, there were far more popular wrestlers than Kane. He was a medium fish in a huge tank in those days, in comparison arguably larger fish in The Rock, Stone Cold Steve Austin, Triple H, Shawn Michaels, Mankind and The Undertaker. Then when that tank got smaller, new talent were still considered bigger fish; Chris Jericho, Kurt Angle, Chris Benoit. Then the new breed came in when the fish tank was getting smaller still; John Cena, Randy Orton, Edge, Jeff Hardy, Brock Lesnar and now CM Punk. At this time Kane’s medium sized fish was shrinking. He was getting older, slower, less interesting.

One thing they tried to keep Kane’s character fresh was take Kane’s mask off. This was a huge angle. I never thought they’d get Kane to take his mask off; it was key to his character and a fundamental part of his look. Kane was supposedly burnt in a fire as a kid so the idea behind the mask was to cover up his scarred face. And while Glen Jacobs, the man who portrays Kane, has a menacing look on him, it took away a huge part of Kane that made him so scary in the first place. The only reason why I’d have been happy for Kane to lose his mask was if the WWE were to actually give him the push to the top he deserved for such a long time. They never really did.

Something that always used to annoy me about the WWE was that they burderned Kane with a one day title reign for so long. I never thought he deserved to lose the title in one day, after finally getting to the top and get a win over Stone Cold Steve Austin in the process. I thought that was terrible; at the time Kane was still one of the most interesting characters on TV, even in the fruitful attitude era. He didn’t deserve that. No one does really. It’s one of the reasons why I feel sorry for Dolph Ziggler and Rey Mysterio and their terrible title reigns. What’s a bigger crime though is that it took over 12 years for him to not only get another World Heavyweight Title reign, but for him to have a good crack at the top. Kane had a decent run as champion a couple of years ago, and his program while wasn’t great, his character was pretty damn entertaining.

It's hard to remember this ever happening.
Who was he in a program with as World Heavyweight Champion? Oh yeah, some guy called The Undertaker. Kane has the unfortunate title as being an Undertaker-lite. In nearly every way possible, Kane is inferior to The Undertaker. He’s a big guy like The Undertaker, but in the ring he can’t compare to Big Evil. The Undertaker is unparalleled when it comes to big guys and their ability in the ring. He’s untouchable. Kane however, is a damn good wrestler, for a man of 7 feet and 320 pounds; he can fly across that ring and put on a very good show. His moveset is distinctive despite him sharing his finishers with The Undertaker. On the microphone, The Undertaker, when on form, floors Kane in this respect too. Kane isn’t often given much time on the microphone, not because it’s a weakness, but because it’s against his character to talk too much. But he’s still very good; one of the highlights of the disappointing program between Kane and The Undertaker for the World title two years ago was Kane’s “reveal all” promo where he explained his plot for the title all along and how The Undertaker fell for it. That promo was gold, and he was on the microphone for a good 10 minutes then, a rarity for Kane. His character is inferior to The Undertaker’s as well; in the respect that The Undertaker’s Deadman gimmick has lasted an incredible 22 years, bar the few years as The American Bad Ass, with few tweaks here and there. Kane has had to change his character over and over again, to avoid being too similar to The Undertaker, and yet maintain the entertainment value. Kane is less popular than The Undertaker in every other way possible too; fan opinion, backstage respect and reputation, merchandise, everything. Kane is exactly that, The Undertaker-lite.

But there is one thing that Kane can revert to that The Undertaker can’t. There’s one thing that Kane has the ability to do that The Undertaker can’t even begin to compare with, and that’s the ability to be funny. You can call it an underrated trait in a wrestler, but the ability to make an audience laugh is important. It’s entertaining; it’s an often overlooked quality in a wrestler. I can give you two very easy examples to back myself up on this. The first, Santino. Santino will never be a World Heavyweight Champion. He’s not good enough in the ring, not popular enough overall with any age demographic, not even kids. But if you remember The Elimination Chamber earlier this year, Santino was amazing. He was put into the match due to a concussion to Randy Orton, he was a surprise entrance really, and no one expected him to be given the spot in the match. But how the fans reacted. They knew he had no chance of winning the Elimination Chamber. They knew he was a huge underdog. And they supported him in his underdog role. Why? Because they knew his value as a comedy wrestler. And you know what? Santino delivered big time in the Elimination Chamber. He got by far the biggest pops in that match when he dug in deep and survived to the final two in the chamber, with Daniel Bryan. It was a simple story, but if it wasn’t for Santino playing the funny guy so well now for a number of years, we wouldn’t have got that great performance from Santino.

Secondly is Daniel Bryan himself. Daniel Bryan is a great story in today’s WWE. A little indie guy who happens to be the best technical wrestler since Chris Benoit, gets his chance at glory by winning Money in the Bank, and cashes in. But he’s still one of the most entertaining wrestlers in the roster, in my opinion; he’s been the most entertaining wrestler for a good half year now. And why? Because he’s just so funny. He knows how to garner a reaction. And his in ring ability is unquestionable; it’s always been the ability to play a character that people questioned. And how he’s backed that ability up. He gets probably more time on TV than any other wrestler nowadays. It speaks volumes, it really does. And it’s the comedy element to his character that makes him stand out, even when he’s not heading into a World Title at the moment. Because he’s such a good wrestler, the true best in the world I’d say at this time, and because he’s so entertaining and funny, it’s inevitable he’ll be given that reward at the top again very soon.

I admit it, I'm a huge Brothers of Destruction mark. I have no shame.

Because Kane is immediately compared in every way to The Undertaker in everything he does, not only because he’s the storyline brother of The Undertaker, but also because he too has an evil streak, is a big guy that has a similar move set, Kane has to adjust himself in a way that’s different to The Undertaker. I think deep down Glen Jacobs knows that he’s just not as good in most ways to The Undertaker. Sometimes it’s good to accept that you’re not #1 and just be the best you can, and be better in ways others can’t. And Kane does that by being funny, in usually inappropriate or unexpected ways.

Kane has a great career in comedy segments. Because it’s not every week, every time we see him and a little unexpected when it does happen, it’s often absolutely hilarious. Kane does evil and sinister segments, he does horror slapstick segments (usually badly, take the Paul Bearer freezer storyline as an example), and he also does comedy. One of my all time favourite funny moments from Kane is when he’s preparing a six-man tag team match with The Rock and Hulk Hogan, and his partners are discussing how they’re not too sure how to deal with The Big Red Machine. Kane walks in and just tears the roof off with his amazing impressions of The Rock and Hulk Hogan, hulking up, posing, everything. It’s just brilliant. It came out of nowhere and was just one of my favourite segments ever. What about the celebratory Santino trumpet segment from last year? Kane was just turning into a good guy but wasn’t quite there yet at the time, and was in an eight-man tag team match with Santino, Big Show and Vladmir Kozlov; his three partners start doing the trumpet celebration and Kane just stands there in disgust. Then all of a sudden he just starts joining in. It’s just moments like that that Kane can get away with, in a way that The Undertaker can’t, and he’s just so good at it.

Which brings me to his current program with Daniel Bryan. I truly believe that the paring of these two unexpectedly funny guys wasn’t planned long term. I believe everyone thought they’d have a program that ended with Daniel Bryan being put over by Kane to the top again, because Kane has spent long periods of his career putting smaller wrestlers over, which is another trait he’s better than The Undertaker at. But the segments have been just so funny consistently over the last couple of months that they’ve started to pair them and even gave them the Tag Team Titles. The Tag Team Titles were almost inevitably being readied for Rey Mysterio and Sin Cara to the point that the writing was pretty much engrained on the belt, but with Kane and Daniel Bryan working so well together with their fantastic chemistry, plans have changed. And while Daniel Bryan is a really big part of why this team is so successful on TV, Kane needs more credit in his role.

The "hug it out" segment was comedy gold.
That’s the purpose of this article. To pay homage to Kane, something that isn’t done enough. Sure, there have been better wrestlers than Kane, in many different ways; in ring ability, on the microphone, everything. I’m not taking anything away from these wrestlers. I’m not taking anything away from The Undertaker, who in most ways is better than Kane. I prefer The Undertaker to Kane myself. But Kane is just not praised enough for the role he’s done consistently since 1995. That’s fifteen years service. He’s a scary monster, he’s a big wrestler but can wrestle really well, he’s decent on the microphone, he’s put more smaller wrestlers over in that time than most other wrestlers (Chris Jericho may trump, but I doubt many others do in the past 15 years). But he’s also a very, VERY funny guy. I don’t know if it’s Glen Jacobs the man who has decided that comedy segments are good for his character, or if it’s Vince McMahon, or multiple other people over the years that have created storylines for him, but it works. It’s always worked. And Kane, I thank you for your fantastic work throughout your career. You’ll always be one of my favourite wrestlers. And one more thing Kane, I really, truly, deeply hope you enjoyed Disneyland. Thanks for reading.

For the latest updates on my work, follow me on Facebook and Twitter here!