Bunny Ears Podcast 36: Chris Jericho (Annotated)
Hi, I’m Craig The Intern. They make me transcribe these every week. Everything’s going great so far! I’m learning a lot this week, and you will too. Apparently there’s a country called “Canada”?
The lionheart, the Ayatollah of Rock N’ Rolla, Y2J…Chris Jericho!
Bunny Ears…IS…JERICHO! But first Mack has to redo the intro so he hurts Matt’s ears more (by Matt’s request, oddly enough). And we learn Paul Heyman officiated Rory Culkin’s wedding! (Check to see if any of the gifts are mysteriously missing, Rory). Chris Jericho is given a proper introduction, and told the bunny ears he’s wearing just might suit him too well. Jericho takes all his fashion cues from Paul Stanley—if he can pull something off, and he’s a manly dude, so can Y2J. If you want to make it, you do something that’s never been done before; Jericho cites Bowie, who was weird at the time but now iconic in all his looks. Could the same be true for bunny ears?
Chris is celebrating five years of podcasting, and has had on heroes like William Shatner and Paul Stanley, which he couldn’t do if it were just a wrestling show. He recalls first meeting Mack at Hugo’s with Kieran, and they talked about how Kieran had worn a Chris Jericho shirt in a play. (It was actually Mack’s Jerichoholic shirt, and he got it back eventually.)
Mack has called Jericho his favorite professional athlete, and they discuss his entire career arc, and how celebrities have a mutual respect society. Mack brings up the toughness of small guys versus big guys, and Chris has some thoughts on that, as a smaller guy (relatively, in wrestling).
Chris is the first Canadian guest, which is a big deal because we love Canadians and they love us (so Matt says, anyway). He’s from Winnipeg, which is flat and prairie-like. He claims that it’s a true, Google-able fact that the temperature there can get colder than the surface of Mars. (I’ll check that down below.) Growing up there makes you tough, because a kid you’re hanging out in minus 30 weather.
It’s time to learn Canadian slang. Rye is whiskey, parkade is underground parking garage, peelers are strippers, a brown is a beer, a two-four is a case of beer, homo milk means homogenized, and it comes in a plastic bag. They discuss Tim Horton’s and other Canadian snacks, which leads into testing Chris’ knowledge of Canadian geography. You have to fly to Alaska from Canada, even though it’s attached, because mountains block the other way, Chris says.
Matt talks about Canadian TV shows he saw in Vermont growing up. Chris talks about a show called The Beachcombers that was the most Canadian show ever, about guys on the Vancouver shoreline who would comb the beaches for logs. They talk about how Degrassi could get away with profanity because it was on the CBC, but they rarely used it and it was a shock when they did. When Chris grew up there were only four channels, and one of them was called Channel 10. It was the French one, and showed nudity.
They talk Canadian music, and the first artist Matt names is Snow. Chris says the Tragically Hip are the biggest Canadian band, and every Canadian can name about 20 of their songs. Yet they can’t sell out arenas in the U.S. Matt talks about American arrogance towards people who are celebrities only in their own countries. Chris says some artists used to just be celebrities in Quebec and not the rest of Canada, so they talk about Quebec’s separatist movement, and the differences from France.
Chris was born in New York and has dual citizenship. When his dad, Ted Irvine, played hockey for the Rangers they lived on Long Island. In the mid-2000s, when WWE decided you couldn’t be a good guy and be from Canada, he and other Canadians were “now residing in…” American towns. He was assigned Tampa, Florida, where he lives but has no particular allegiance to.
They talk more about Chris’ dad and his hockey career. Chris liked hockey, but was drawn to the showbiz and individual character side of wrestling and rock n’ roll. They talk a bit about his band Fozzy, and how it’s now the priority, but wrestling comes back when the time is right. Though there are some challenges to being taken seriously as a band when a wrestler fronts it. Sometimes fans don’t want you to do the stuff you’re not known for, but Chris had experience with skepticism from being a smaller guy wrestling, and isn’t daunted. He learned everything from every experience, and took 9 years to eventually get to WWE, becoming a star in each territory first.
George Plimpton comes up as a guy with inherent charisma, and how he used to be the spokesperson for Intellivision, the competitor to Atari, and appear in comic-book print ads. If you know how to connect with an audience, you’ll always have a job. He had that “it” factor, and that’s what you need. Chris talks about how Nick Bockwinkel inspired his own 2008 ring persona, and taught him how you can get people to suspend their disbelief if they connect with you. Chris no longer needs to wrestle but he still does it because he enjoys it. He says the WWE style is the best style, but he loves combining that with New Japan now. Whenever his persona becomes boring, he changes it, and he talks about how his new look and face-paint in Japan came about.
We can’t have him leave without bringing up his cameo in MacGruber. Originally he didn’t want to be in it as a WWE thing, so he asked for lines, but that wasn’t enough, so some of what you now hear is improv. It’s still the only acting project of his that he has bought a ticket to.
Infinity War twist! This is just part one! You have to switch over to Talk Is Jericho to hear part two! At least nobody got dusted this time.
Oh, wait, uh…Mr. Culkin? I don’t feel so good…
[Editor’s note: Craig the Intern survived. His ill feeling turned out to be just gas.]
4:00 How the Jericho podcast came to be
7:35 Who would win in a fight: Mack or Vanilla Ice?
15:00 The secret Tim Horton’s reference in Wayne’s World
32:00 Why Fozzy can’t get booked in Japan
-It’s true: Winnipeg has been colder than Mars.
-The most Canadian TV show ever?
-Here’s George Plimpton’s Intellivision commercial:
-Here’s Chris Jericho’s new look for New Japan:
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Podcast: Talk Is Jericho
Facebook, personal: https://www.facebook.com/ChrisJericho/
Facebook, official WWE fan page: https://www.facebook.com/WWEJericho/
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Image: Flickr/Simon Q