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Torch DVD DoubleShot: Burgan reviews Shoot Interviews with Dana Dameson & Chris Candido

Apr 19, 2005 - 6:30:00 AM
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By Derek Burgan, Torch Media Guy

Torch DVD DoubleShot Review
RF Video Shoot Interview with Dana Dameson
RF Video Shoot Interview with Chris Candido


”It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” And so began Charles Dickens A Tale of Two Cities. Well, what we have here is A Tale of Two Shoots. One, with a man who seems to tell the truth – no matter how bad it makes him look – and the other, with a woman who is apparently incapable of telling anything but lies.

On to the Shoots!

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Shoot Interview with Dana Dameson

I first saw Dana Dameson when she appeared as a Special K Slut during a ROH show. I would then read stories of Dana’s antics in other independent promotions based in the North East and think they must be exaggerated. I mean, no girl can be that nuts, can they? Well, we’ll find out I guess. Dana started the interview wearing a Playboy sweater and was constantly complaining how cold it was in the room. However, halfway through the shoot she takes off the sweater, and does the rest of the interview wearing nothing but her bra. I’ll give Dana one thing, she knows how to market herself.

Dana got into going to wrestling shows when she worked at a ShopRite store, since some of her coworkers would go to local indie shows. Dana went to 3PW, USA Pro and XPW shows among others and became a huge fan of The Sandman. Dana contacted Sean “The Mic” McCaffrey, through the Declaration of Independents website, to find out how to get into the business. Eventually, Dana hooked up with USA Pro’s Frank Goodman, who asked Dana to sell ten tickets to a USA Pro show if she wanted to be used. Dameson just sold her 10 tickets to people waiting in line on the day of the show. You gotta admit, that’s a great rib. While at USAPro, Dana trained with Matt Striker, Azrael and Bison Bravado, but said that the bumps hurt her back, so she didn’t want to train anymore.

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Dana Dameson



I should point out that throughout this entire shoot, I think Dameson looked at the camera for a total of twenty seconds. Dameson’s eyes would seem to be darting all around the room when giving an answer and you don’t have to have a psychology major to know what that means. In one moment I loved, Dameson talked about going to SSCW promoter Carmine Sabia’s house and said that Sabia took pictures of her to use on the SSCW website. Dameson added they were naked pictures. Rob Feinstein said, “no, they weren’t.” Dameson quickly said she was joking. Priceless. Dameson made her way to talking about wrestler Billy Reil, who at the time was dating Becky Bayless. Dameson claimed, “we didn’t do nothin’, we just kissed.” Can’t see why Becky would have a problem with that. I shit-you-not, Dameson then talked for a legit two minutes about Reil saying her vagina stank, literally. This included the now classic phrase, “sometimes when a girl has her period it doesn’t really smell all that great, and when your head was between my legs it was a day after I was bleeding.” Like I could make THAT up.

After trashing Reil for what seemed like forever, Dameson then said Reil was actually a nice guy. Immediately after that, Dameson said that if Reil didn’t have a kid, she hoped he would drop dead. Well, that’s nice. In my notes for this shoot, I wrote THIS GIRL IS INSANE at this point. After Reil, Dameson ran down another relationship she had with the wrestler Deranged. Dameson was also upset that Deranged went on the Masked Maniac hotline and said that her vagina smelled bad. The subject of racism came up and Dana said that there was no possible way she could be a racist because she had so many friends that were both Spanish and black. Dana then said, “the thing about blacks or whatever is you have to fear them.” To top that, Dana listed all the blacks that she is friendly with, “Prince Nana, New Jack, Homicide..” Dana was informed that Homicide is not black.

“He’s not?”

”He’s not?”

”He’s not?”

How can you not laugh at that? Dana said she was offered $5,000 to do Wrestling Vixxxens, but passed as it’s “not her thing.” Dana eventually talked about Homicide, who she considered to be a good guy, and explained her side of the story that made it’s way around the ‘net several months ago. Dameson said she did an interview with “that bald jew” (Eric Simms) and was asked a question about sleeping with her trainer. Dameson responded, “no, I’m not Valentina.” Dameson said that she made the comment as a slam at Valentina, without considering that Homicide was Valentina’s trainer. Dameson said she told Simms to take that comment out of the interview, but it made it’s way around the Internet anyway. Dameson said that at an AWA show, Homicide confronted her while adding, “I think he said something threatening to me.” Dameson doesn’t remember falling down at the time and said, “maybe I did (fall down), maybe he pushed me.” Dameson won’t hire a lawyer to press charges though because she claims that she can’t afford one. Welcome to the wonderful world of indie wrestling!

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"If he didn't have a kid, I'd say I hope he dies." - Dana on Billy Reil



Dameson said that currently she is out of the business and works two jobs. Dameson wants to be a model, but she said at 4’11”, she’s too short. Dameson does want to be famous though. If she knew ahead of time what the business was really like, Dameson said she never would have gotten involved, but admits to having a lot of fun. Dameson’s words to advice to other girls interested into getting into wrestling is to “do what makes you happy.” Dameson said not to listen to anyone else and that, “if you don’t want to train, don’t.” I’m not sure how helpful that advice really is though. In fact, if Dana had continued to train she might have learned rule #1 in wrestling, DON’T F--- WITH HOMICIDE!!

Bonus Features: The DVD includes the Must Watch segment of Dana making her professional debut on USAPro’s Striker Vision. There’s got to be a reason Matt Striker isn’t used by ROH/TNA/WWE that I don’t know about. There is also a match from JAPW in which Dana accompanied the Christopher Street Connection versus The Ring Crew Express (Dunn & Marcos). Another match, in which Dana refereed a midget match, is also included.

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Dana Dameson on Striker Vision



Overall Thoughts: I’m not sure how much appeal, if any, this DVD has to viewers who don’t already know who Dana is, but if you do know Dameson, it really is incredible to see the spins that she puts on stories that have involved her over the years. Click Here to purchase the disc or head on over to RFVideo.com and check out all the other DVDs they have to offer

Shoot Interview with Chris Candido

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As compared to Dana Dameson, who is relatively new to the business, Chris Candido has been everywhere. I remember reading about Chris in the Torch newsletter back when he was in Jim Cornette’s Smokey Mountain Wrestling. Candido then appeared on WWE TV, with his girlfriend Tammy Sytch (a/k/a Sunny), and was a complete bomb as Skip of the Bodydonnas. It was Candido’s run in ECW, as one third of the group Triple Threat, where Chris got widely noticed, and followed that up with largely unnoticed and/or disastrous runs in XPW and WCW, until finally turning his career around with a recent run in TNA.

Chris started off the shoot with a lot of great Smokey Mountain Wrestling stories, including how Cornette had Candido facing Tracey Smothers in a series of ladder matches because Shawn Michaels and Razor Ramon were doing them on the road for the WWE. The difference was that Cornette was too cheap to buy more than one ladder, so Candido and Smothers were eventually using the same beaten up ladder while doing these dangerous matches. Candido then went into his tours of Japan and talked about the guys he worked with there like Stan Hansen.

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Chris "No Gimmicks Needed" Candido



Candido discussed his WWE career and how much he hated it. Vince McMahon told Candido that the WWE had some great idea for a character for him that sounded a lot like the Blue Blazer. Candido had several try out matches with this gimmick that he said were absolutely horrible and it wasn’t long after that the WWE came up with the Bodydonnas gimmick for both Chris and Tammy. The highlight of this era was Candido working with Barry Horowitz, as the angle of longtime jobber Horowitz getting his first win led to three Pay Per View matches for the two men. Candido admitted that he should have learned to shut his mouth in Connecticut, and that seemed to be a running theme throughout the shoot. Candido took the lion’s share of blame for burning his bridges with the WWE and other companies and this type of humility was really strange to hear coming from the mouth of a wrestler. Especially after the direct contrast to the Dana Dameson shoot reviewed above, Candido is refreshingly honest in all his answers, even when they make him look really bad.

Candido told a great story of being team with Tom Pritchard and how much Tom loved being ordered to cut his hair to be a Bodydonna. Candido filmed Pritchard going to the barbershop and Pritchard telling them, disdainfully, “I need to look like that” while pointing to Candido. Chris talked about all the lame feuds that the Bodydonnas had during this era and brought up such legendary teams as Tekno Team 2000 and the Godwinns. Candido saw the writing on the wall when he was told to job to the debuting Mankind and specifically ordered to not look good. Candido gave his notice, and since he was just going to Paul Heyman’s ECW, Vince McMahon just let him go. Candido addressed all the rumors about the heat he has with the Heartbreak Kid Shawn Michaels, and even talks about the alleged sex tape with Sunny and HBK. “If someone had it, wouldn’t you (Rob Feinstein) have it by now?”

Candido spent a long time discussing his relationship with Paul Heyman, who Chris met when Heyman was very young and selling his homemade wrestling magazine. Chris said part of Heyman’s genius was letting the “boys” do what they wanted to and Candido knew he would have to be put over strong in ECW to overcome the Skip stigma. Candido talked about the ECW backstage area after guys like Louie Spiccoli died and admitted that no one took that as a wake-up call. Candido was candid about his drug use, along with Tammy’s, in ECW and admitted that they weren’t clean, they just didn’t want to get caught. Chris went in-depth into the story about Tammy passing out backstage at an ECW show, which caused their firing, and I was glad to finally hear their side of the story. Until now, all I have ever heard or read about concerning that night was that Tammy drank some GHB-laced drink and claimed not to have known. Candido explained that it was Scott Levy’s (Raven) GHB and that they poured it into some Gatoraide so that later on they could get trashed. Tammy drank some of the Gatoraide, without knowing what they had done, and passed out.

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"Obviously, the way I did it was the wrong way to do it." - Candido, on leaving the WWE



Candido said he couldn’t name one person in wrestling not on steroids and also had a few choice words for Eric Bischoff. Candido talked about his experiences in Rob Black’s XPW and said his first time through was incredible, but when he came back it was the drizzlin’ shits. Chris said Tammy was invited to be part of the Raw X Anniversary Show, but the WWE un-invited her several weeks later. Candido talked about what he thought of the indies today, “they suck,” but put over several guys such as Jimmy Jacobs, Matt Sydal and Mike Kruel. Candido explained about his current situation with TNA and said the only people he needs to prove he is clean to is himself, Tammy and TNA’s Jerry Jarrett, who Candido said straight up didn’t trust Candido’s word.

I only briefly went over a fraction of what Candido talked about over the course of this two disc shoot interview. Candido came across completely different than the man I have read about for the last decade and gives another take on stories many of us have already accepted as “the truth.” Candido’s openness towards himself and his faults, along with taking responsibility for the dips his career has taken was a breath of fresh air in the world of pro-wrestling. Here’s hoping he makes the best of his second chance and can once again be a big star in the business.

Overall Thoughts: If you are into shoot interviews, this is one of the better ones. Candido tells great stories and was around for all of the better known feds over the last decade. Candido was a star in SMW and ECW while being in the WWE along with WCW during the Monday Night War. The guy has seen it all and done it all. With all the guys who hit rock bottom and stayed there, it’s nice to see someone who rose up from the depths and tried to make something of himself. Chris Candido is a guy you can cheer for. Click Here to purchase the disc or head on over to RFVideo.com and check out all the other shoot interviews they have to offer.

Special thanks to Torch Japan’s Keith Lipinski for his help with this review.

Torch Media Guy Derek Burgan has been writing for the PWTorch website for almost four years. If you have any questions, corrections, feedback, comments and ideas, he can be reached at: derek@gumgod.com


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