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10 Weirdest Wrestling Characters (That Actually Worked)

2 hours ago

WWE.com

In the early days of professional wrestling, wrestlers toured with travelling carnivals as part of the athletic (or ‘at’) show.

The carnies, impresarios and con artists that ran these shows (this was long before the terms ‘booker’ or ‘promoter’ entered the lexicon of the wrestling biz) figured that people would be more inclined to pay money to see their wrestlers if they had imaginative backstories, costumes and ‘gimmicks’.

So, one guy could be a freak of nature who’d been living in a cave and subsisting on stolen livestock until he was 25, whilst his opponent for the night might be a lion tamer or a reformed pirate. Why not? It’s all showbiz in the end, after all…

When wrestling first appeared on TV in the 1950’s, such outlandish, larger-than-life characters became even more important to the business.

Early TV stars like ‘Killer’ Kowlaski or Dick The Bruiser »

- Chris Quicksilver

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10 Awesome Bruce Springsteen Stories That Prove He’s The Boss

3 hours ago

David J. Phillip/AP

Bruce Springsteen acquired the nickname ‘The Boss’ during The E Street Band’s early days playing clubs and bars. It was Springsteen’s job, as the band leader and foreman, to collect the money they made on the night and pay the band members accordingly.

Yes, it was as innocuous as that. But while the moniker may have humble origins, it has grown to mean so much more to legions of Springsteen fans around the world. Although he has made around $150m over the last few years thanks to hit records and worldwide tours, he has frequently demonstrated that he hasn’t lost the common touch.

Deep down, away from all of the glitz and glamour, he’s just a kid from New Jersey who wanted to sing and play guitar because he saw The Beatles on TV one night.

During the short-lived The Ben Stiller Show in the early nineties, »

- Lewis Howse

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Nufc Transfers: 10 Strikers Newcastle Must Sign

3 hours ago

Richard Sellers/Pa Wire

Newcastle United know that they will be without Papiss Cisse for their next seven games – but there is the real possibility that the Senegalese striker may not feature much for the club at all.

Cisse will be 30 come June and it is public knowledge that the Magpies were close to allowing their top scorer to move to Russia in the January window – plus question marks remain around his knee, which is still not 100% right – so Newcastle must start planning to add a proven forward this summer.

In some ways whether Cisse stays or goes is a moot point – Newcastle need greater strength-in-depth up front regardless. Ayoze Perez has been impressive but is still young and is not really an out-and-out forward anyway, Emmanuel Riviere has not really worked out and looks to just be a squad member, while Facundo Ferreyra’s disastrous spell on Tyneside will »

- Chris Waugh

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15 Stars Who Brought Legitimacy To WWE

3 hours ago

WWE.com

Pro wrestling is the carniest of enterprises, a “worked shoot” environment where plumbers can wrestle garbage men and every sort of animal from snakes to turkeys have been important to the company’s history. However, the art of wrestling is still based in a very legitimate sport, so the need for people who can accurately portray all parts of what creates the “shoot” in the “worked shoot” of pro wrestling are key.

Everything from legitimate wrestlers to those who have unfair advantages in wrestling, just plain look and act like wrestlers, or who can portray those who manage, market and promote legitimate athletic contests are all key participants. In WWE’s long and storied history, there are certainly those who have excelled at this better than others, and on this list  they are celebrated.

From 600-pound champions to 300-pound champions to African-American champions, European-born champions, Intercontinental champions and gold medalists, »

- Marcus K. Dowling

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Win Set Fire To The Stars On DVD

3 hours ago

To celebrate the DVD and Blu-ray release of Set Fire To The Stars, we’re giving five lucky WhatCulture.com readers the chance to win a copy of the film on DVD.

Set in 1950s New York, the film follows John Malcolm Brinnin (Elijah Wood) an aspiring young American poet who finds his ordered world shaken when he embarks on a week-long retreat to save his hell raising hero, Dylan Thomas, played by Celyn Jones.

The film also features established British acting talent including Kelly Reilly (Sherlock Holmes, Flight), Steven Mackintosh (Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Kick Ass 2), Kevin Eldon (Hugo, Hot Fuzz) and Shirley Henderson (Bridget Jones Diary, Trainspotting).

Visually stunning and shot entirely in black and white to an original score by Gruff Rhys, Set Fire To The Stars is about the dirty business of celebrity, and what may have happened in an East Coast boathouse when »

- Simon Gallagher

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4 Times Harrison Ford Cheated Death (And 4 Times He Was A Hero)

3 hours ago

Damian Dovarganes/AP

Harrison Ford is all over the news this week, as he survived a terrifying plane crash and walked away – thankfully – more or less unscathed. Though he suffered what is reportedly some broken bones and deep cuts, that is far better news that it could have been. The crash shocked the entertainment world, but word from Ford’s publicist is that the 72 year old film legend will make a full recovery. His son, Ben, has stated that Ford is “battered, but Ok!”

Many are calling Ford a hero following the crash. Others are talking about how lucky he was to have survived. Both are no doubt correct. The crash took place Thursday, shortly after Ford took off from Santa Monica Airport, piloting a vintage World War 2 plane, a 1942 Ryan Aeronautical ST3KR. Ford, the plane’s only occupant, reported engine trouble shortly after take-off, and radioed to air »

- Jay Anderson

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20 Alien Easter Eggs You Never Noticed

4 hours ago

Fox

There are few movie franchises as iconic and unforgettable as Alien, so what better reason is needed to look back at the classic sci-fi action series and dig out some of those Easter eggs you probably never noticed? With the movies released on Blu-ray a few years ago, fanatics have managed to uncover even more hidden gems recently which weren’t visible on prior DVD versions of the series.

Regardless of each individual movie’s quality (because who doesn’t prefer the first two to the latter two?), the Alien films are absolutely jam-packed with clever hidden gags and references (not so much Alien 3 though, hence its absence from this list), and Prometheus also includes a few nifty ones itself. As for the risible Alien vs. Predator movies? They won’t be getting a look in here whatsoever.

From Easter eggs involving the actual alien eggs themselves to unexpected cameos, »

- Jack Pooley

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10 World Famous Landmarks That Were Almost Destroyed

4 hours ago

Every nation is renowned for certain things – be that food, people, or indeed landmarks. If someone is asked to name three things about France, their likely response would be: “Cheese, baguettes, and the Eiffel Tower”.

The Eiffel Tower may be eternally linked to perceptions of France, but other countries and cities are also known for their famous landmarks or buildings: Rome for the Colosseum, Washington DC for the White House, and Rio de Janeiro for Christ the Redeemer, to name but three further examples.

Yet some of the iconic and world-famous buildings that are around today and are synonymous with the countries in which they are situated have endured troubled pasts.

In a lot of cases it is amazing to think that they still remain standing to this very day. Various natural phenomena – including lightning strikes, earthquakes, hurricanes and other extreme weather conditions – have severely damaged, and in many cases completely destroyed, »

- Chris Waugh

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10 WWE Storylines That Horribly Backfired

4 hours ago

WWE.com

There are a lot of reasons that storylines – angles, as the jargon has it – in pro wrestling can go wrong, and sadly most of them are obvious from the drawing board. This is professional wrestling, after all: if one of the participants in a storyline gets hurt, they’ll almost always work through it. The show must go on.

No, when an angle goes bad or is poorly received, it’s usually because it’s been poorly conceived or executed. Maybe the crowd just isn’t getting behind the babyface character because he’s far too good at being a heel (that’ll be the Miz, and his ill-fated anointing as Ric Flair’s new protégé – and would it have killed him to practice the figure four a little more?) ; or hey, maybe it’s the other way around. Maybe the heel is being cheered over the fan »

- Ben Cooke

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Hugh Jackman: 5 Awesome Performances And 5 That Sucked

5 hours ago

Columbia Pictures

Hugh Jackman didn’t so much fall backwards into being a huge Hollywood star as pirouetted. Before he became the embodiment of certain measures of manly manliness – having a lot of visible body hair, being comfortable enough to wear vests out of the house, smoking cigars on the reg – the Australian-born actor was known for his musical work.

As any child born in the country with any designs on being a performer, Jackman was offered a spot on Neighbours early on in his career, turning it down to continue his work on the stage. It was there that he broke through into the mainstream, thanks to an award-winning turn as the lead in the musical Oklaholma!, reprising the role in the 1999 film adaptation.

Since then, however, he’s diversified his acting portfolio somewhat. He’s still known to the majority of households as Wolverine (even going so far »

- Tom Baker

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9 Deleted Scenes That Totally Change How You View Famous Characters

5 hours ago

Marvel Studios

There’s few things in movie fandom more alluring than deleted scenes. A little glimpse at what might have been, they’re a window into a creative process that reveals how, even with a great script, A-List cast and trouble-free shoot, whether or not a film will be any good is in flux until the edit is well under way.

The thing is, despite the allure, deleted scenes are actually pretty pointless. They’re small moments that don’t impact the wider story enough to be ultimately considered important to the film as a whole. That is, after all, why they were cut. If they had a positive effect on the film, then they wouldn’t be left on the cutting room floor/editor’s recycle bin, destined for a life in DVD bonus features and YouTube compilation videos.

Although that’s not always the case. Sometimes things »

- Alex Leadbeater

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9 Major Celebrities Who Changed Gaming Forever

6 hours ago

Celebrities have had a pretty tumultuous relationship with the gaming industry, as flash back before 2000 and the nearest thing you’d get to one appearing in digital form was to reprise their role in a suitably terrible movie tie-in. All that changed when guys like Rockstar and Naughty Dog got behind the wheel, with the former especially having the suitable budgetary clout following GTA III to pick and choose from the best of the best.

Not only that, but performance capture has evolved exponentially alongside technology, allowing creators across generations to blur the lines between established real-world cinematic conventions and what’s possible only through digital means.

Now, alongside all of this you’ve got the ever-changing world of celebrities – the intersecting of which has helped and hindered gaming in equal measure thanks to social and mass media getting their claws into everything – escalating any involvement between the two into much larger affairs. »

- Scott Tailford

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10 Lengthiest Bans In Newcastle United History

7 hours ago

Richard Sellers/Pa Wire

Newcastle United’s players have had a relatively quiet season on the field during the 2014/15 campaign.

As a team, a shocking start to the season was followed by a fantastic winning run, the end of Chelsea’s unbeaten streak in the Premier League, an earth shattering derby defeat and an implosion of the most epic proportions at the Etihad.

They currently find themselves in Premier League no man’s land. Again.

Individually, things have also been pretty boring. Which brings about somewhat of a welcome change.

Over the years, Newcastle United has become a byword for controversy, soap opera and a downright farce. All of those words apply in abundance to happenings off the pitch, but things are plodding along pretty underwhelmingly under the less than qualified eye of ‘Geordie’ John Carver.

After a lot of hot air off the pitch and even more cold air on it in recent months, »

- Ross Tweddell

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Sponsored: #GoSlowMo With Slow Ride Session Ipa

8 hours ago

After a long-day in the office, there’s nothing we like more than to kick-back with a beer and some good company.

Dr. Don and his mobile couch are the stars of New Belgium’s latest series of ads. His mission: to slow people down. After all, you need to relax to enjoy that tasty beverage in front of you.

Made especially for those laid back drinking sessions, Slow Ride Session Ipa is a blend of seven hop varieties and carries with it tropical scents of melon, peach, lime, and grapefruit. Creating a deliciously fruity aroma and taste – with a sweet, clean, start and hoppy bitterness in the back – Slow Ride is the latest addition to New Belgium’s selection of craft beers.

#GoSlowMo »

- WhatCulture

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10 Things Joey Barton Wants You To Forget

8 hours ago

Ryan Browne/Pa Wire

In all areas of life, there are people who just won’t go away, no matter how hard you try to block them out of your mind. The more you dislike them, the more they seem to appear.

Ocarina of Time has Navi. Game of Thrones has Joffrey. The footballing world has Joey Barton.

You’d think that with an ongoing career of implosions, people would learn to ignore him. Instead, quite the opposite has happened, with Barton frequently popping up on some of the biggest sporting stages.

He’s wormed his way onto Match of the Day, the occasional BBC Rugby broadcast, Channel 4’s NFL coverage and, away from sports, Question Time. All of this clearly proves that to make it as an ‘expert’ in every field, all you have to do is punch, kick and tweet philosophical insights about Nietzsche…

But while Barton’s reputation is infamous, »

- Michael Potts

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Man Utd: 7 Tactical Alterations Lvg Should Consider

8 hours ago

Richard Sellers/Empics Sport

For a man hailed as a tactical genius, Louis Van Gaal has come under severe scrutiny over his strategic decisions this season. Recent pressure forced him to switch to 4-2-3-1 from a 4-1-3-2 diamond system against Sunderland and Newcastle and despite back to back wins, questions are still being asked about United’s style of play.

He began his reign by implementing a 3-5-2 system which was particularly successful for him with the Netherlands during the World Cup and when he was in charge of Ajax. After initial success with it in pre-season, his United side failed to fully adapt to it in the Premier League and they never got to grips with playing three at the back.

Then came a switch to the ‘4 diamond 2’ system which brought about good results but not the style of play that United fans crave. »

- Ryan Baxter

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10 Wrestling Facts We Didn’t Know Last Week (6 March)

8 hours ago

WWE.com

It seems a lot of the uproar surrounding comments made by Aj Lee to Stephanie McMahon on Twitter, criticising her boss for tweeting about women’s rights yet never standing up for the Divas, has died down. Responding to the backlash, WWE have a featured a lot of female-related content on their official website, including galleries, interviews and articles looking back at just how important the Divas are.

Whether a thinly-veiled damage control exercise or not, at least the women are getting more credit, which can only be seen as a good thing. It’s been a huge week in the wrestling world, as always, and so much has happened over the span of the past seven days.

This article aims to look at 10 different factoids and news bites from the past week, looking to provide fans with some little tidbits which might not be well-known, but also »

- Jamie Kennedy

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20 Boring Foods That You Can Turn Into Pizza

9 hours ago

Wikipedia

Despite being one of the world’s most popular foods and the staple diet of anthropomorphic ninja turtles, a pizza is quite a hard thing to describe.

Hundreds of years of trial, error, and advancement have taken it from a mulch of grains and wheats to the takeaway staple and restaurant classic that we all know and love. A floury base, somewhere between crisp and soft, lashed with a tomato sauce, furnished with cheese, and then decorated with whatever your particular toppings of choice are. A thing of beauty by anyone’s standards.

But with the concept of the base now so interchangeable, and almost every single fruit, vegetable, animal and mineral having adorned the top over the years, the definition of what a pizza is remains more about the spirit of the dish than the ingredients found there in. Philosophical nonsense it may be, but the upside is »

- Adam Clery

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10 Best WWE References In Rap Music

9 hours ago

instagram

Wiz Khalifa being a guest on this week’s episode of Monday Night Raw is only the latest in a long line of the wrestling world and the rap world coming together. There have been rap songs used as entrance themes, rappers remixing current themes, wrestlers using rapper gimmicks and so on.

It’s a common connection if you really stop and think about it. Rap is a world full of braggadocio, with artists constantly talking about how tough they are, how much money they have, how many women they can sleep with and how good they are at their craft. At its very core, pro wrestling is much of the same. Listen to a Ric Flair promo and hear how much he loves to talk about his money and the women he’s been with.

A popular thing in rap songs is to name drop wrestlers, wrestling moves »

- Aaron Hyden

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Rock Band 4: 10 Awesome Songs That Must Be Included

9 hours ago

Wikipedia/Harmonix

Yes, it’s finally coming – and about time too!

Long rumoured to be the game that original Guitar Hero-developer Harmonix would return to after the disasterpiece that was the Kinect-powered Fantasia, at Gdc 2015 they confirmed not only were the rumours true, but that (as of time of writing) the release date is later this year.

As if 2015 couldn’t get any better with the final Metal Gear Solid, The Witcher 3 and Batman: Arkham Knight all waiting in the wings, now you’ve got hands-down the greatest multiplayer experience any game has ever provided getting the next-gen coat of polish.

When you think back on how the whole ‘movement’ of plastic instrument games went, it was damn-near a cultural revolution.

Despite plastic guitars being a regular staple on Eastern shores (Konami must be kicking themselves for not pushing Guitar Freaks more) and in arcades Westwards, it felt like Guitar Hero just took off overnight. »

- Scott Tailford

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