Friday, February 25, 2011

Jacques Rougeau [RF Video Shoot Interview]

The Good
I inexplicably have vivid memories of where I was and what I was doing when I first heard a shoot interview, unless it is something totally mundane like driving in the car or washing dishes. I suppose this all began with WOL back in the day and I can remember where I was, what time of day it was and the anxiety I was feeling as Jacques Rougeau told the story of his confrontation with the Dynamite Kid. It was a famous backstage incident that was elevated by Dynamite's own account in his autobiography and has been brought up in numerous interviews, especially by RF Video. I'm not sure if the WOL version was the first public telling by Jacques, but I would speculate that could be the case. Here, Jacques spends about a 1/4 of the shoot interview detailing the build-up, the events and the fallout. While it was only two weeks in his twenty-five years or so in the business, it was a career-changing and life-altering event. It is an intense segment (not as intense as the WOL version, if I remember correctly), but it is one of those must-hears in RF Video shoots. I actually think they should splice together people's accounts and opinions about that incident and some others (Spivey-Adnois, Haynes-Sharpe, Haku-Jimmy Jack Funk, etc.), although it can be difficult with deceased parties involved. As for the overall shoot, I found it to be very good. Jacques is pretty personable and has some unique perspectives as a third-generation star. Personally, I wished there had been more exploration into the Montreal territory, the war with the Vachons and some of those things, but you can't expect everything from RF Video (he'll ask about an injury that caused Jacques to miss a couple shots in `88, but leaves out things from Montreal that are truly historically significant - ugh). In terms of if Jacques Rougeau got himself over or not, I would say "yes." He did admit to being a prick of sorts in his younger years, but seems pretty humble about who is, who he was and what he really did. He put over people (ranging from Jimmy Hart and Greg Valentine who are generally liked to people like Hulk Hogan and Terry Taylor who are somewhat unpopular) and he had select comments for a long list of people: Bret Hart, Eric Bischoff, Raven, Roddy Piper and others that you probably would not be entirely surprised by. A very good interview that most anyone would like.

The Bad
If you're offended when people take the Lord's name in vain - avoid this one! For whatever reason, Jacques responds to countless questions by bringing up Jesus…it is almost comedic after a while. He also incessantly claps, snickers obnoxiously and gets giddy and excited about numerous questions. Those quirks aside, this is one an example of why I cannot stand Rob Feinstein, although many interviewers make mistakes, he comes across as such a goof because he cannot remember common facts (Hulk Hogan was "Thunder Lips," not "Thunder Bolt" in Rocky III, he cannot remember Johnny Valiant, he forgets that Frenchy Martin was called Frenchy Martin in the WWF, etc.). Although those are really minor things in the broader sense, they really slow down and damper the interview and undermine his credibility. Say what you will about Dave Meltzer's on-air talking ability, he is rarely at a complete loss when it comes to facts. As someone who lives amongst Franco-Americans, it is painful to hear Rob's utter ignorance of French pronunciation of places and names. Do some research! It's not "Jose LeDuc," he's not some Spanish Quebecer…sheesh. This was a really good interview, but I think Jacques Rougeau has the potential to do an amazing interview, although I've not heard that one yet.

The Rating: ****1/2

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