Here is Deadspin's own description of it:
An occasional feature in which the Masked Man, Deadspin's pro wrestling correspondent, honors the sport's fallen and examines their legacies. Today: "Ravishing" Rick Rude, who died in 1999 of heart failure possibly caused by a drug overdose.I will just do a teaser of sorts on here, if you want to read the rest of it, you should click right here:
The Super Posedown at Royal Rumble 1989 wasn't much of a bodybuilding expo, but it was probably close to the average person's idea of one: On one side stood "Ravishing" Rick Rude, flexing and diabolically gyrating his hips; across the ring loomed the Ultimate Warrior, the WWF's musclebound comer, grunting and shaking and nominally "posing" for the audience.
Warrior certainly had the crowd on his side, but then, so did anyone standing opposite Rude, arguably the most loathed bad guy of his era. It's not hard to hate a guy with his own face airbrushed on the crotch of his pants, after all. But Rude's act — the classic Lothario with the volume turned up to 11 – wasn't as simple as it seemed.
Rude was born Richard Erwin Rood in Minnesota at a time when the state was a fertile ground for wrestling talent. He went to high school with Tom Zenk and Nikita Koloff and trained with Eddie Sharkey, who also trained the Road Warriors, Curt Hennig, and Barry Darsow.
Rude worked early on in Canada, Georgia, and Memphis, mostly as an insignificant babyface, but his turn as an evildoer in Jim Crockett Promotions in 1983 determined his life's purpose. He made a return to the Memphis territory in '84, and it was there that Jerry Jarrett gave him the nickname "Ravishing" and helped define the role Rude would inhabit for much of the rest of his life.
Rude came along at a cultural moment when image — read: physical perfection — was at a premium. But he wasn't all mustache and muscle: Contra most of the statuesque brutes of his day, Rude was actually a considerable in-ring technician. His sojourn through the South saw him birth a new archetype for the pretty-boy bad guy. Early playboys of that sort were bleached, tanned jerks who projected their churlishness broadly, in the manner of the oversized masks of ancient Greek theater, so that they would be at least as detestable from the back row as from the front. Even into the first couple of decades of televised wrestling, wrestlers played exclusively to the live crowd; they were as likely to turn their backs to the TV cameras as address them directly.
This week, the talented MM takes a look at the career of "Ravishing" Rick Rude, who was one of the most talented wrestlers of his generation. As mentioned in the column above, not only did Rude have the chiseled/muscular look that Vice McMahon desperately craved in his wrestlers, he could flat out wrestle which was a rarity. Rude was the complete package (To quote JR "no pun intended) and his wrestling career should have reached farther heights. The man absolutely owned his gimmick as his heelish tactics won him the hate of fans everywhere. As usual, the Masked Man does a wonderful job of capturing what Rude was about, why and where he succeeded , and just made the "Ravishing One" so special. I would highly suggest reading it if you were a Rick Rude fan, want to know more wrestling history, or just want to read something that will make you think.
Thanks for reading!
Comment if you like, we would appreciate it if you do.
If you need to contact us for any reason, telling us how great we are, asking us some questions, making suggestions, or even complaining, just e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org