Brutus Beefcake [RF Video Shoot Interview]
The Honky Tonk Man has convinced me to think a little differently about Brutus Beefcake. The man who's often dismissed because of his limitations in the ring and lifelong friendship with Hulk Hogan is no different than a number of other pro-wrestling personalities. No one craps on Arn Anderson as being Ric Flair's "Beefcake" (as HTM put it) because he was a great worker, but the idea is the same. This shoot interview made it quite apparent that although Ed Leslie got his biggest breaks due to his friendship with Hulk Hogan, he worked hard himself for many years on the territories often without Hogan around or with Hogan being a midcarder as well. He was not particularly negative about people and had some unique perspectives to share. I would have liked to here him talk more about Hogan, but in trying to avoid the stigma of being Hogan's lackey, he seems to only say just enough. Many of his thoughts on the success of the WWF, the changes within the business and the declining WCW (which he accurately predicted would be dead in 2 years time) are astonishing for someone who is derided as a hanger-on with no real talent. I really enjoyed this.
When you are the best friend of one of pro-wrestling's biggest stars and that person is not a major focal point of the interview, something is wrong. Yes, Brutus Beefcake was his own man. Yes, Brutus Beefcake had a career worth detailing. Yes, Hulk Hogan has done interviews, autobiographies and the like over the years. However, Brutus Beefcake has this first-hand perspective that is totally different than many other people. Hogan is one of the most notorious fabricators when talking about himself, so we need people who were with him to share the true details. Brutus does not do that. He gives a few things, but he does not really give that perspective that I hoped he might. Regardless, I nominate Brutus Beefcake for a Timeline of the WWF by Kayfabe Commentaries, perhaps 1988 or 1989?
The Rating: ***3/4