WWWF Grudge Match

Outtakes and Behind-the-Scenes Tid-Bits
indicates "Too Hot for WWWF!"
(some language or themes may be inappropriate for sensitive viewers)

| General Stuff | The Truth Behind... | Late Responses | Odd requests |

General Stuff
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Our reply to Barney's lawyers
And now you know... the rest of the story.

The other letter from the Braveheart Jihad™
The letter we posted wasn't the only one we received.

Rosie vs. Roseanne, Take 1 Too Hot for WWWF!
Joe's first draft scenario that was even more disgusting than the one we used

Love Boat vs. Titanic scenario
Paul Golba proposed this rough match idea. It remained the butt of jokes for over a year.

Watch what you write
Think your Grudge Match responses won't ever effect your real life?

Our original logo
What the WWF didn't want you to see! A viewer (Sean Ahern) made this for us,
but then the WWF lawyers sent us a nasty, threatening letter (in 1995), so we pulled it.
Given the ubiquitous nature of the WWF logo on the web now, it looks like they gave up.

100th Match Graphic
Paul Golba put a lot of work into this retrospective, too much for just one use.
So here it is again. Of course, this is slightly modified from the original
since we had to replace Barney with DinoBarney™ for legal purposes.

Death Star vs. Enterprise, Take 1 Too Hot for WWWF!
Ian Pugh made several cartoons for the Fun Stuff section. Some took more than one draft.
The first version of this cartoon had the death ray not yet reaching the Enterprise.
Apparently, it worked on paper, but when he scanned it in, it looked a bit... Jewish.

The Truth Behind...
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Think you know the inside scoop? If so, check out the full stories behind some seemingly
harmless Grudge Match features. Highlight the white space to reveal the hidden text.

...Flipper vs. Jaws

The first, and one of the few times, that Steve and Brian ever agreed on anything. Seems harmless enough, except that Flipper v. Jaws was nothing more than an experiment. We selected a fight that was a complete mismatch, and decided to both defend the obviously weaker side. The reason? Because we wanted to see if people were affected by our commentary, or if they even read it at all. Flipper's shocking victory gave us our answer. Since the experiment had little meaning out of context, we rewrote the commentary for the book so that Steve defended Jaws.

...Calvin vs. Bart

Not only was Calvin v. Bart a very popular and well received match, it was also very close, with Bart winning by a scant 3 votes. Technically, though, this match was a tie! When Steve was changing over to the new match, he checked the results one last time (or so he thought) to get the final tally, and it was tied. Not wanting a tie in such a big match, particularly so close on the heels of the Worst Actor tie, we waited and let the next vote decide it. After several rechecks and about 5 tension-filled minutes, a burst of 3 votes came in for Bart, making him the winner.

...Borg Cube vs. Independence Day Mothership

The debate aspect of our match commentaries is largely genuine: the commentators choose sides and go from there. There is typically some discussion on the scenario and perhaps another idea or two might be thrown around, but otherwise it's every man for himself. The exception that proves that rule is Borg v. ID4. Wanting to time this match with movie premieres and video releases, we had to run the match on short notice. Unfortunately, we were horribly underqualified. Steve hadn't seen ID4 and had only seen a few Borg episodes of Star Trek, while Brian hadn't seen any. So to pull it off, Brian briefed Steve on ID4, and they both contacted friends and relatives that routinely watched ST:TNG (that's why there are so many "thanks" credits on that match). They then sketched a rough outline for the entire commentary to figure out what they could and would talk about. Any more collaboration and the match would have been jointly scripted. As far as we know, no one ever noticed.

...cryptic teasers

We've done teasers for the next match from day one. In the early days, some teasers may have seemed overly cryptic or vague (e.g. "The jth qanuta" or "Unbelievable!"). This was because we sometimes had no idea what our next match would be, so we just put up some gibberish. It only happened a handful of times, and we'd replace it with a real teaser as soon as we could. But if you were on the site in the first three years and remember a teaser that didn't seem to connect well with the next match, maybe this is why. Fortunately, we now schedule matches months in advance, so we haven't needed to do this in years. As far as you know, anyway.

...the KFC pic

Colonel Sanders v. Orville Redenbacher has some particularly good contestant pics: good sharpness and color, both are animated head shots, etc. Nowadays, you may think we just grabbed them off the web. However, in 1996, digital pics weren't as easy to find as they are now, and we were often on our own. The Orville pic was simple enough: we scanned it in off a popcorn box. The Sanders pic, however, proved a little more difficult. The night before this match was to go up, none had been found (except the sleeping pic from the results section, but that wasn't the perfect match for the Orville pic like the KFC logo would be). Brian was going to be out anyway, so he decided to stop by the Ithaca KFC on the way home. He got there about 9:10... and it had closed at 9. He could have tried again later, but a lot of work had been done already to ensure the match would go up the next day. So Brian began exploring the best option left to him: the parking lot. Napkins, cups, potato wedges... a lot of trash from the day's sales, but no logo. He'd made it about half-way to the dumpster (a decision he didn't want to have to make), when he came across a small take-out box that had been run over. The logo on one side had been crushed, but the other only had a small crease in it... and a dollop of mashed potatoes on the good Colonel's forehead. Desperate (but not desperate enough to try the dumpster), Brian tore the logo from the box, slung the potatoes to the ground, and took it up to campus the next morning. After some scanning and 20 minutes in an image editor, the crease and nasty grease spot were gone, and we were left with an image worthy of the KFC home page. Now you know the extents we go to in order to provide you with high quality entertainment.

...the death of the VR simulator Too Hot for WWWF!

In the very early days of the site, some friends of ours put together a rather impressive Virtual Reality simulator for our site -- there are still references to it on some of the first matches we ever did. During the Great Computer Mishap of May 1995™, however, our department's server got fried and was down for over a week. Most of the viewer responses to Bandit v. CHiPs were lost, and the VR simulator was damaged beyond repair. But that's not the entire story. In reality, there was no VR simulator. Not ever. Back then, we didn't even have pictures for all our matches -- how would we have a virtual reality simulator? It was just a gag we thought up to have some fun. When someone clicked on "Try out the new Virtual Reality simulation of last week's match" they were sent to a page that said something to the effect of "440 Error -- System capacity exceeded. Please try again later." We even made up a bogus viewer response to encourage people to keep trying. One poor schmuck from the University of Illinois tried over 600 times without clueing in. Another frustrated and angry viewer informed us to "fix it or fuck it". We weren't sure how long we could keep up the charade, and were planning on eventually coming clean about the joke. The computer crash gave us an unplanned and very convenient out.

Late Responses
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Even though we state very clearly at the top of the archives that the old matches are "disabled", we still routinely get comments on old matches. Some are genuinely funny or insightful, but we still can't post them on principle (trying to field responses to over 150 archived matches would drive us insane). Most, however, are not. Typically, these are people that read one of our matches and feel compelled to right some wrong, or clarify an egregious error (or seven). This is when it gets interesting.

Star Trek & Star Wars
We often divide our late responses into two categories:
"Death Star vs. Enterprise" and "Other".

The French Too Hot for WWWF!

OK... we really shouldn't be surprised when people get overly-technical or offended about sci-fi and French-bashing. And we get a lot for Rottweilers v. Chihuahuas, of course ("Your poor taste in humor really disgusts me along with every other Rottweiler owner and I'm sure Chihuahua owners don't appreciate it either."). But some are much harder to explain. A lot of people have gotten worked up over our martial arts matches ("'return of the dragon' was STAGED, who is so stupid to not know that?" or "I HAVE STUDIED AUTHENTIC MARTIAL ARTS"); Worst Actor Oscar ("Jack Klugman IS god!!"), Alf v. E.T. ("E.T. would SO win!"), even Cinderella v. Snow White ("Thus, she is Princess Ella") and Steve v. Brian ("if either of you spent five minuts in some getto alley you would both end up mugged and [CENSORED]"). Here are some more:

Prince v. Michael Jackson
"I feel less intelegent [sic] for even bothering clicking on your site"

Jason v. Freddy
"To All The Freddy Haters"

Zeppo Marx
We had to give the Stooges a chance, right?

The Greys
The all time winner. We do not know where he got his information.

Odd requests
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Over the years we have gotten a series of unusual requests, including ones regarding:

  • Musical information, such as info on a Donny Osmond song, info on the Coneheads soundtrack, and whether Prince and Michael Jackson have ever done a duet written by John Lennon.
  • How to beat the bull in Karate Champ
  • "If you may know of any way that I might obtain a video tape of a Midget tossing competition"
  • "We would like to buy a copy of the video with the action. Video and audio." (?!)
  • How to "get in touch with halfjack, ex University of Tennessee"
  • "who wone the match betwen castus jack and tripple hhh"
  • An invitation to "check out" a 6 foot tall Joe Camel cigar store indian for sale (only $1300!)
  • Mr. Clean's ethnic heritage
We also once recieved a self-proclaimed Hungarian joke that was neither funny nor Hungarian, as well as quite possibly the oddest email of them all.

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