Don’t forget to keep up to date with your reading of THE RING POST. New DK, Jones, Alley, Annie, Jonny X and a Zenk column that’ll make your eyes bleed (especially if you happen to be Sid Vicious). And of course tomorrow means new MONDAY NIGHT SUCKS, along with hopefully a new LOW BLOW by the weekend. Now time for some sluttiness.
One thing about getting older, there sure seems to be a lot of things out there to remind you how old you are. Great White cooks their last remaining hundred fans and the first thought is “I remember when you couldn’t turn on the radio without hearing their annoying-ass song”. People show up on celebrity has-been shows and it seems like only yesterday they were on the cover of People magazine. You take a drink and think “wow, I remember when I had to go a speakeasy for this because it had been outlawed by the government” (oh wait, thought I was Hebner for a second there).
Or you hear discussion on Missy Hyatt, with terms like “worn out”, “over the hill”, and “unattractive” being batted around…
…because friends, let me tell you: Missy Hyatt used to be HOT! And I have many a stained bed sheet from my youth to prove it.
Lethal webmaster (and all-around teddy bear) MMN was a dear and sent me her book, “The First Lady of Wrestling”, off the WISH LIST that it’s never too late to click on and send some bounty the Barbed One’s way. I’d heard a few people say this was a better read than it had any right to be, but I must admit I was skeptical. I mean let’s face it, Missy was known for two things, and it certainly wasn’t the left and right sides of her brain.
Well, I’m happy to report though that this book does more than just hold the reader’s interest, but is a fascinating and entertaining “romp” (I know… I know… “boo Mike”) through the wrestling business, from the indys to Texas and Memphis, to the legendary UWF (where she was inarguably one of the most over personalities) and ECW, to the major leagues of WCW and the WWF. Along the way we’re treated to sexual harassment lawsuits, golden showers (in the truest sense of the word), drug abuse, jealousy, back stabbing, and of course the long list of wrestlers, professional athletes, and “Wonder Years” stars Missy has bedded down with.
The story begins with an incident in ECW between her and the wife of the Sandman, Lori Fullerton. It’s the perfect way to start the book, as more than a simple anecdote it brings together a lot of different aspects of what goes on behind the curtain: The misplaced jealousy, the rumor mill, and how bad blood backstage can often lead to problems in the ring. The problems basically stem from the belief that Lori has that Missy has balled Sandman (which she denies, and I have a feeling if she had she’d say so just to piss his wife off), and between that and her lack of experience in the ring winds up yanking out Missy’s fake ponytail to the delight of the crowd. Of course backstage she’s all apologetic, but as we later find out the problems between the two definitely didn’t end that day.
And then we travel back in time.
Missy doesn’t waste a whole lot of time with her childhood or any of that stuff. She ties it all up quickly then begins her tale of life as a wrestling fan, then quickly graduating from fan to groupie (starting with a blow job for Tommy Rich). From there it goes onto her first serious relationship, with Jake Roberts (she mentions he was the guy who got her to try cocaine for the first time. WHAT? JAKE DOES DRUGS??) And then we’re on to the relationship that actually got her noticed and on TV… the one with “Hollywood” John Tatum.
Missy got her start in Texas, working with the Von Erichs, Freebirds, and her first opponent, “Sunshine”. Their infamous feud culminated in a mud wrestling match at the big David Von Erich memorial show in Texas Stadium. Missy totally praises Sunshine, and is grateful for how much she learned from her. The same can not be said of her next feud, with Dark Journey. Hyatt mentions that the rumor was she was coked out and had a real tendency to get overexcited in the ring. It wouldn’t be otherwise newsworthy, except that there’s a hella funny story about when Dick Slater, who brought her into wrestling, got dumped by her:
“Now here's the dirt.
Two weeks before Ken brought in John and me, Dark Journey had left Dick- who was like old enough to be her father- and shacked up for a weekend in the apartment of a young wrestler named Steve Borden.
That's Sting to you.
Naturally, Slater found out abuot it, probably from Journey herself, and natrually he flipped out. The next week, he came storming into the dressing room looking for Sting, and found him in the bathroom putting on his face paint. Slater beat the living crap out of him. Sting didn't even put up a fight. He just let himself get beat up: first, because he knew he'd been caught, and second, because he was just starting out in the business and Slater had a lot of buddies who could've screwed with his career. Sting never talked about what happened, not to me, but I heard from a couple of wrestlers that were in the dressing room that night that he came staggering out of the bathroom with his eyes swollen shut and his mouth all busted up and his cheekbones bruised. The worst of it was that afterwards he had to go back into the bathroom, put on his makeup over the cuts and bruises, and head out to the ring to wrestle.
Slater left the UWF the next week.”
By this point Missy is the darling of the Apter mags, appearing on the cover and in layouts seemingly every month. WOW she was a babe. They soon left Texas and were off to the upstart UWF. Apparently she was never really comfortable around Bill Watts (she later fucked his son just to spite him), but the move did put her in close proximity to someone she became VERY comfortable around; the one and only Eddie “Hot Stuff” Gilbert. Though they were originally paired up only as a gimmick, it became a lot more than that really quickly. Missy takes us through the flirting, to the romance, and into the awkward position this put everyone in… since Tatum was still a member of “Hot Stuff International”, the group all three of them were in.
Gilbert is the focus of the book through the next few phases of her life. First with UWF, then the WWF (unless you really paid attention you missed her there. PWI had stories about her phantom talk show, which were shot but never aired), which is most noteworthy for what didn’t happen. She relates a story of Vince wanting her to be the love interest of friend of Lethal Honky Tonk Man, and she reports that Eddie EXPLODED over it. “I never found out what it was between them… but it must’ve been something.” I asked HTM about it, who had no clue that he’d been mentioned, or what the heat was about. He did find it “interesting”, however. They go from there to WCW (which had just bought the UWF), where Eddie suffered the indignity of being put on the booking committee only to be back-stabbed by Kevin Sullivan. Missy takes this VERY personally, relating this tidbit about meeting Woman (Nancy Sullivan) shortly after she’d left him for Chris Benoit:
Missy: The day that man dies, I'm dancing on his grave.
Woman: Well, that's going to be a long conga line.
She then goes into the story of their indescretions, and eventual break-up. Shortly thereafter, she also tells the story of Paul E.’s phone call (the story of the two of them meeting Paul is one of the highlights of the book), where he tells her tearfully that Eddie had passed away.
After that, Missy began to earn her rep. I’m not sure if this is the complete list, but here’s the wrestlers she felt compelled to mention she’d been with:
-Eric Watts (to piss off Bill)
-Buff Bagwell (implied)
-Road Warrior Hawk
-Sean Morley ("shortest, lamest sex I ever had")
She doesn't mention Zenk, but does quote him on the back cover saying "Missy and Brian Pillman and I were the best tag team ever... under a blanket!" (It also quotes Kevin Nash saying “I may be the only person in wrestling who didn’t sleep with Missy”… probably because he would’ve had to walk all the way to a second floor motel room to get it on). She also had several flings with hockey and football players, including a tale about Jim Kelly right after he went to the Superbowl that will crack you the hell up.
The book winds down with her run in ECW, and more heat with Lori which she says tells her is her cue to get out of the business (following a broken arm). She since returned, both for the doomed APW and now in the indys. She’s currently in school (and, as Scherer reported yesterday, STRIPPING). She doesn’t mention her WEBSITE, except maybe in passing while talking about Sunny as she relates to the WWF. There’s also a pretty entertaining tale of her losing it and destroying a Wal-Mart toy aisle upon seeing the Sable doll, since her dream of there being a “Missy” figure was never realized.
The one complaint I really have with this book, that she isn’t able to really discuss the sexual harassment lawsuit against WCW, is a petty gripe since she’s bound by the gag order imposed by the parties. She does say she’s very happy with the outcome, which I assume means Bischoff isn’t. (Heh!)
I won’t lie, I was STUNNED by how much I enjoyed this book. I went in with low expectations which helped, but even if I hadn’t it would’ve exceeded them. Missy never comes off as bitter, but certainly not afraid to dish some dirt (on all kinds of folks… including Ric Flair which I’m sure he wasn’t exactly thrilled with). She says it repeatedly; there’s a lot of the Missy Hyatt character in her, and this reflects it. I know fans of both sexes who love this book, and more than anything I’ve read so far I can see why. To the girls, Missy is a success story… one who made it in a man’s world. And to the men (at least the older ones), Missy is someone who gave us plenty of wood.
GET IT! You won’t be disappointed.
COMING SOON- THE BARBED LIBRARY: Sex, Lies, and Headlocks: The Real Story of Vince McMahon and the World Wrestling Federation
Fuck yeah I’d hit it