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Rope Opera: How WCW Killed Vince Russo [Paperback]

Vince Russo
1.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Jan. 22 2010
Highlighting the athlete renowned as the savior of the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) and the man who destroyed World Championship Wrestling (WCW), this behind-the-scenes autobiography documents the astonishing career of Vince Russo. Chronicling the rise, fall, and eventual rebirth of professional wrestling, this engrossing account answers questions such as How did Vince McMahon win the war between the WWF and WCW? What was Eric Bischoff really like? and Why did Hulk Hogan threaten lawsuits? Penned by a winner of the WCW World Heavyweight Championship, this memoir details the author’s historic face-off with Hulk Hogan in Daytona Beach as well as the legendary Monday Night Wars. Exploring the inner workings of the sport’s most turbulent era, this memoir speaks from the center of the maelstrom, delivering a fresh and informed perspective on the current pro-wrestling scene. From the death of WCW to the rise of Total Nonstop Action Wrestling—the world’s fastest-growing and most cutting-edge wrestling promotion—this remarkable narrative demonstrates how a grown man can find peace within the insanity of the squared circle.

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Review

"In the vernacular of professional wrestling itself, I think I've actually become a Russo 'mark' . . . Russo pretty much lets it all hang out here, warts and all."  —blogcritics.org



"I recommend [this book] to individuals who are curious about the behind-the- scenes occurrences of a wrestling company, specifically TNA. Moreover, the 255-page book depicts Vince Russo's account of his professional life in wrestling and personal life as a Christian. If anything, it gives readers a unique portrayal of Vince Russo as a person as opposed to Vince Russo the character."  —Slam! Sports

About the Author

Vince Russo is a Christian minister. He was the editor of WWF Magazine, the head of the WCW’s creative department, and the creative force behind the National Wrestling Alliance’s Total Nonstop Action Wrestling promotion. He is the author of Forgiven. He lives in Broomfield, Colorado.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing. Nov. 28 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The book arrived in good condition and in a timely manner, so there's absolutely no issues with the seller. The disappointment with this book comes from the contents between the pages. Vince Russo seems to go all over the place, from his time in WCW, TNA, and 'finding God'. It would have been better had the contents of the book stuck for the most part on his time in WCW as the title would have you believe this book is primarily about, but it's not.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By Stinger
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I bought this book knowing how awesome Vince Russo made wrestling when I was in high school... I admired his work in the WWF and when he switched over to WCW, it was the reason I started to enjoy it better than WWF at the time.....his angles were so wicked and mixed pro wrestling so well with all the popular culture and stuff that a teenage kid wants to see!!.....the first 50 pages of this book was about how Russo was saved by God!...having hope i read on and it did have maybe 30% wrestling content, but that was it....it hardly gets into details.....Vince, im glad you had a chance to share your story about God, but your book plain sucked!!!....wanna read a real book, get Bret Hart or Joe Laurinaitis....those books are actually about wrestling!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.0 out of 5 stars  23 reviews
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not what I expected March 1 2010
By Michael L. Sibbitt - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I was really looking forward to this book, an insider's version of what went on with the failed WCW/Russo experiment. Russo does what a lot of saved people do, throw his religion in the mix, which would have been fine if this were billed as a religious book, but it wasn't. People are going to buy this book for the wrestling stuff, not so much for his religious beliefs. I was hoping for more names named, actual backstage stories, why he wrote certain angles and if he now thinks they were successful. The only in depth angles we were filled in on were the David Arquette and Bash at the Beach controversies. If the whole book would have been like those chapters, then I would have thought more highly of the book, but in it's current form, it was not worth the money I paid for it.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Boy, does this guy love to talk... March 11 2010
By Andrew M. Walsh - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I reviewed Vince's first book a while back (unfavorably) and this current book is more of the same. The book is 1/3 wrestling related and 2/3 Vince Russo talking about Vince Russo. The church-y content has been ramped down a bit, which is nice (this is supposed to be a wrestling autobiography, btw). I just get annoyed as Vince rambles on and on and on about any thought that entered his head as he was "writing". He jams a bajillion pop-culture references into this book, this gets old after chapter 2. There's a wrestling chapter, then 2 or 3 chapters about how he's bored, or his love for fantasy baseball, or his pals growing up, or how....
If this were a book about Vince Russo and WCW only, it would be a pamphlet. He's incredibly self absorbed, and I don't care enough about the guy to read 250 pages about him.
This book isn't worth your time or $.

Oh and by the way, I'll save you from having to read this book Everything about the failure of WCW... not his fault. He was sweet and considerate to everyone there, but all the backstage politics and management interfered with his 5 star ideas. "Boo hoo, it's not my fault!" Anything he does take blame for, he gives the most insincere apology you can imaging (of course followed by "it really wasn't my fault!"
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Vince Russo latest book seems real at times and fake at others leaving you with mixed feelings on the book 3/5 stars Dec 31 2010
By alex fryling - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I do have to say going into this book I loved the title of it. Was this a good book yes did it fulfill my expectations on what it was going to be like not that much. Don't get me wrong this was a very good book but there are certain things that make this book annoying. I will say this is an easy read for anyone. Yes it is around 250 pages or more but you never feel like it really is taking a long time to read. The one problem in my opinion with this book is there are too many chapters in the book. For being less than 300 pages there is no way there should have been 52 chapters in this book. I don't think this is Vince's fault but whoever was publishing this book should have thought on what it would look like when people bought the book. The one thing I will say is it covers all different aspects of Vince Russo's life. This did not just talk about his time in wrestling but it also went to talk about his family and how God help him become a stronger and different person. Now don't get me wrong as far as religion goes I am not one to judge because I don't go to church but they way this book is written at times by Vince Russo it seems like he is shoving views of God down are throat. He is not bad about it but when he talks about how much he changed in life and saying it is only because of god he sounds kind of phony. I say this because if you are truly going to change in life it needs to be more than just about god you as a person have to change as well. He does not even mention his wife in helping him change that much. He does give her a lot of credit to her and his kids in this book which is nice to hear. Another thing that is disturbing and once again this is his opinion it sounds like he was trying to justify how bad WCW got once he got there. Like there always seemed to be an excuse for the storylines that were going on. I will say the fall of WCW does not all lay on the shoulders of Vince Russo but in my opinion most of it does. It does seem a little weird that almost 99% of people attribute a lot of WCW''s fall to Vince Russo but yet him and probably some other people don't feel it is truly their fault. It just sounds fake. Overall this book is a solid book I am going to go with a 3/5 and a mild recommendation to pick up this book. I bought this book for $20 if you could get it between $10-$15 that is a much better buy. Not an Awesome book but not awful by any means.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The ramblings of a scattered mind June 28 2011
By Ronny - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I picked up this book with a very open mind. Of course I was well aware that many fans held him in very low esteem and blamed him for the death of WCW. I had heard and read lots of stories about Russo and his inability to write a coherent television show, but I also know that in the wrestling industry, burying an out of favor guy, can become quite popular. I was very curious to hear Vince Russo's side of the story.

Vince Russo's side of the story is that he really was to blame for WCW final years. Russo not only takes credit for WCW (David Arquette- WCW Champion), but rather than admitting it was a bad idea in hindsight, Russo defends it as a success. It's moments like these that only embolden his critics. Russo still tries to take credit for the successful "WWF Attitude Era". Even though any honest person would certainly credit him as having a hand in it, the reality is Vince McMahon and WWF talent were the driving force behind the success as evidenced by their continued success long after he was gone, WCW's descent into non-existence, and TNA's current product.

One need only to read this book, which reads as the creative...disjointed, illogical, scatological ramblings of somebody with attention deficit disorder, to understand that he is a writer that could only achieve success when heavily edited...something that would have helped greatly in this book. It strikes me that Russo could pitch you 20 creative ideas in as many minutes...the problem is only one (if any) would be of any value.

Throughout the book, I kept waiting to see some metamorphosis. Having discovered a renewed faith in God, I was really expecting Russo to exhibit some of the humility that I mentioned as lacking above. It never comes. What we get instead is the inclusion of a treatise for a television show called Rope Opera that Russo created during his hiatus from WCW. I've never read anything quite as sophomoric, crass, and utterly unreadable/unwatchable. No mature adult (or immature for that matter) would think this a good idea...but Russo thinks it's brilliant and beams like a proud father.

I really hope Vince Russo has a happy life. He's a father and husband and does not deserve the venom often directed at him. He's just a man trying to make a living and I for one hope he is very successful...as long as he stays far away from wrestling or any other creative endeavor.
2.0 out of 5 stars insightful info wrapped in tedious boredom. July 19 2014
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The book has some interesting insight and info but it also has some MAJOR flaws. First off most of the book is a very boring read and I'll tell you why as the reason for it is the second flaw I want to mention.

Vince bounces between different time frames and topics very frequently. Often times he speaks about things that have no relation to wrestling. These parts are incredibly boring. I bought this book for insight and stories about wcw not to learn about childhood baseball or his friend spitting ketchup. I understand this book is biographical but these extraneous details detract from the commentary that most people actually bought the book to hear about. Not only that but these side details are also boring very preachy.

This leads to my last gripe. In this book Vince talks about god and finding Jesus And he does so ALOT. It gets to the point where he was basically telling you that of you haven't found god you better go do it now or your life will be filled with regret.

I myself am not religious. That being said I don't have an issue with people who are or want to share their experience. The problem is Vince talks about it constantly to the point where he is basically not only throwing it in your face but shoving it down yoir throat. As !mentioned before the book has major pacing issues that lead to boring stretches and the major religious slant only serves to make it even harder to read.
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