Former WWE writer Brian Gewirtz was recently a guest on E&C’s Pod Of Awesomeness. Here are some highlights….
On feeling intimidated by a lot of performers in the company:
“Yeah, I mean, [Edge, Christian, The Rock, Chris Jericho, and Kurt Angle] was probably the starting five of my first go around. I think, like, Al Snow and Steve Blackman too. Yeah, it’s a great starting line because, as a writer and everything, you’re supposed to write for everybody, but, like, human nature gets in the way. I mean, I was intimidated by a lot of people and if nobody was… I always figured, like, Triple H is very intimidating, and he was a big star, and he always seemed to put his material together himself, so it’s like, ‘okay, great – he’s all set.’”
“Rock, I had met at MTV before coming [to WWE], so I kind of knew him, and, well, he helped get me an interview with WWE in the first place, so we clicked right away and Mick [Foley] too, and Jericho. And this was at a time too when Jericho was going through a period where it was, like, ‘I’m losing to Viscera on [WWE Sunday Night] Heat? What the hell is going on?’ That type of thing. And then, [Edge and Christian], I think [clicked right away as well]. We’re around the same age. I pretended to like hockey a little bit to open the door.”
On WWE higher-ups not wanting Edge and Christian to do comedy out of fear they wouldn’t be taken seriously:
“Yeah, that was a big back-and-forth that I used to have when the subject of Edge and Christian came up and it was ‘they’re too goofy – they’re too goofy; they’re never going to be main eventers if they’re going to be doing this type of ridiculousness’ and my argument was, and I’m sure it was not eliquated in a nice, mature way at the time. It was probably more like, ‘you’re stupid!’ and running away or something like that. But the point that I did eventually get across was, ‘it’s like, well, you’ve got to start somewhere, right?’ Like, [Edge] went from silent rage and puffy shirt, and evil vampires, and running around the subway for some reason, and now, [he has] got an identity.”
On comedy being a key starting point for many future main eventers:
“Nobody’s saying you have to be this forever, but now you’re more comfortable on the mic and you can go out there and cut a promo but, no, it’s all that stuff though that gave you the ammunition to eventually evolve, that was my roundabout point, to eventually evolve into ‘The Rated-R Superstar’ and, I can’t really peg [Christian’s] character into one little catchphrase. I don’t want to say ‘The One More Match Guy’ because that doesn’t really do [him] any justice. I guess ‘Captain Charisma’. That’s true.”
Click here to listen to the full show.