‘Celebrity’ ‘chef’, Guy Fieri:
‘Celebrity’ ‘wrestler’, Zack Ryder:
Every week, @TomBlargh will look at some of the awful merch that someone expects you to buy. Up this week: THE RISE AND FALL OF ZACK RYDER.
It’s difficult to know how to feel about Zack Ryder. With zero support from anyone in management, he managed to gain a cult following and seemingly carve out a place for himself in WWE. However, it only lasted a few months; after having a brief run as US Champion, being pushed off the stage in a wheelchair by Kane and taking a punt to the nuts from Eve at Wrestlemania, that was about it for old Zack as a featured player on WWE TV.
So, on the face of things, he’s had a pretty raw deal. What makes him such a conflicting personality though is the way that he’s dealt with it – he’s got every right to feel bitter and maybe he is stuck in a hopeless position, but it’s hard to root for him when all he seems to do about things is complain on Twitter.
Regardless of what Zack’s ultimate destiny is though, the way he’s gone from being a guy WWE had zero interest in marketing to being one of their featured merch guys and back again is kind of fascinating. Forget a documentary or a book, The Rise and Fall of Zack Ryder is best told in the form of merch! LET’S GET STARTED.
Ahh, the WWE basics t-shirt. When you want to test the waters and see if you can make money off a wrestler but you can’t be bothered to spend the time to design a proper t-shirt. Even though this looks like something you’d buy from K-Mart, I think this still went through a few waves of selling out.
Never ones to miss out on an opportunity to capitalise on a fad, Barber Shop Window was basically the Zack Ryder t-shirt factory when they first started. People wanted Zack t-shirts, and BShop were delighted to meet the demand… for $20, plus shipping, and generally only after a couple of months after you ordered them.
Here are a couple of their earlier designs, though there were a good few that followed these ones (which resulted in the exhaustion of the world’s natural resource of ‘bro’ puns):
Miss_Dani_Baby: She hates ketchup and might be considered a college graduate.
Follow her on Twitter.
SniperWolfVA: Also known as The Butter Bandit, he lives off of only raisins and butter.
Follow him on Twitter.
Fucktronics: He likes to get German Suplexed onto beds and has nice scarfs.
Follow him on Twitter.
JeremyExiled: He plays the guitar. He does not play the trombone. Once shaved off a guy’s eyebrow.
Follow him on Twitter.
I’m going to go with The Miz vs. Zack Ryder with the ring surrounded by faeces. Hell, maybe a ring surrounded by flaming paper bags of feces! Not only would it be fitting of both their gimmicks, but I would genuinely enjoy watching the match hoping that one or both would roll in the shit.
Ghosts. Undertaker vs. Bray Wyatt in an Inghosto Match. Every time someone hits the mat a ghost of a dead wrestler will appear on the apron and be able to attack them if they get close. If the ghost of Benoit comes out, after the 63rd slam, it automatically wins the match and can challenge for the belt at Halloween Havoc 2015.
It would be Layla El vs. Me and the ring would be surrounded by my penis and fried chicken. Don’t even try to tell me that that isn’t exactly what all of you would have said. I think that no matter who wins, I would totally win forever for life always and so I’d never have to have another match or day of living or not living. Time would stop and just kinda go away like Chikara (RIP (FOR NOW (CHIKARA FOR LIFE))) and I wouldn’t even give a half of a roller coaster about it. Thank you, have a blessed day. Goodnight.
First off, let me say this. If something is surrounding a ring and it isn’t Shetland Ponies, we’ve already been lead so astray that I doubt we can make our collective ways back to salvation. That being said, give me Randy Savage vs. Jim “Das Anvil” Neidhart in a Shetland Pony-jack match. The set-up is that Savage is looking to sell the ponies to Neidhart, but a fight has broken out due to payment disagreements. Winner cooks the po…just kidding. Both winner and loser ride the ponies into the crowd – fade to black. Continue reading
Zack Ryder was pretty much thrown into the abyss that is known as the WWE undercard after his run with Edge and Curt Hawkins but he did something about it… or tried to at least. He created a Youtube show to help develop his character and in a way, call out WWE for not using him.
Z! True Long Island Story would go on to win over many fans, making Ryder’s character popular enough for WWE to use him… for a short while. He even got a short run with the US Championship. However, they made him look like a goon in the long run and at first, I felt bad for him.
From the outside looking in, it seemed that WWE used his internet popularity to milk him and his merchandise for the little bit of money they could and then threw him aside instead of developing his character further. I hated it for the guy. He went out of his way to try to make it in the WWE.
My feelings quickly changed as he began to complain and moan on Twitter every week. If he had just kept quiet after maybe I would still see him in some sort of positive light. His griping and complaining voided out everything I had thought of him for trying as hard as he did to get over on his YouTube show. Looking back, he looks pathetic through the entire thing. The guy created his own “Internet Championship” for God’s sake. We should be ashamed. Zack Ryder jumped his own shark and it was really depressing.