Pro wrestling’s been around for a long, long time; all told, it’s been something of an institution for a century and a half, give or take a decade or two. And let’s face it: you can’t kick around on the planet for that long without suffering an occasional misstep or two. Of course, every wrestling fan worth his or her laces knows about the biggest boners of the sport: The Shockmaster’s debut, David Arquette’s run as Heavyweight champ and pretty much every angle that included Psycho Sid Justice (or whatever the hell his name was). Well folks, the whole point of Whiskey. Tango. Foxtrot. is to bring some of the lesser known cow patties of wrestling’s history back into the spotlight for enough of a fleeting moment that we can relive, reflect and then collectively breathe a sigh of relief that better days are here. Kind of.
Now when I was a kid back in the heady territory days, the Zambuie Express (a.k.a. Zambaui Express) were some of the biggest and baddest dudes around. And while they could have easily made enough of a rep for themselves with their in-ring presence, Kareem Muhammad (Ray Candy, who was New Jack’s Trainer) wasn’t above grabbing some cheap heat now and again. In the early 1980s, Kareem had a memorable feud with up and coming wrestling prodigy Jay Youngblood in which he regularly referred to Youngblood as a “drunken Indian” and made fun of his parents for living on an Indian reservation. Cringe-worthy as it all sounds, this angle was relatively tame compared to Muhammad’s 1985 appearance on Jerry Lawler’s “talk show” a few years later in which he lambasted old school icon Tojo Yamamoto with all sorts of slurs and derogatory comments. (You can view the entire debacle here.) The fact that Tojo sat through all of the ensuing ridiculous showed that he was a tough old guy who loved the business, for better or for worse.
For everyone who complains that wrestling has become far too “politically correct” these days, I’d hope that we can at least agree that this is some pretty stuff that’s better left in the proverbial dustbin of history.
Mark it! ✮