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The podcast week in review, brought to you by Zip Recruiter.

They said it…

  • “You look like Ray Rowe off the gas.” – Doc Gallows to Karl Anderson.
  • “There’s no way I can’t not go back there again. There’s no way.” – Ronda Rousey on her WrestleMania experience.

Outlier

Exile on Badstreet #3: Kris Zellner talks to Rob Naylor and Wes Hatch about the early 00’s independent wrestling explosion. An exhaustive show that covers just about every fed you can think of, from ROH and CZW to Epic and NWA Wildside. If you were a fan at this time you’ll find yourself smiling and nodding your head repeatedly at the characters involved, both in ring and out. While Zellner’s first two shows were focused on 80’s wrestling (the Freebirds and the demise of the UWF), this history lesson is far more recent but just as vital.

The Usual Suspects

Who’s Next with Goldberg #43 (4/10/15): Goldberg sneaks in a Friday show with National Hot Rod Association legend Darrell Gwynn. They talk about Gwynn’s charity work and the current racing stuff. The car stuff just does nothing for me, but Gwynn has a pretty amazing story (he was paralyzed during an exhibition race and started a foundation to cure paralysis) and I wish they had gotten more into that. THUMBS DOWN

Talk n’ Shop #41 (4/11/15): We’re back to a limited crew of Karl, Doc, and Rocky. They discuss the Talk n’ Shop movie, of course, but also toss out some great anecdotes (two of which involve the live consumption of fish, including Gallows biting the head off of a fresh catch). A nice rebound show after last week. THUMBS UP

MLW Radio #174 (4/12/15): More with Court and Alex Greenfield. They talk a little bit of current events, but spend a lot of the show tossing out old stories, one of which involves Dusty Rhodes and flatulence, another involving Dusty Rhodes mooning Alex. The stories make this an upgrade over last week’s outing, but still nowhere near the show at its peak with Konnan and Mister Saint Laurent. THUMBS IN THE MIDDLE

Piper’s Pit #54 (4/13/15): Piper, to his credit, actually has a newsworthy guest, as Rowdy Roddy raps with Ronda Rousey about her Wrestlemania appearance. There’s actually some interesting insight about what it’s like making your wrestling debut at Wrestlemania. They also talk about fighting, stuntwork, Gene Labelle, the Olympics, fainting goats, being a movie star, her book being banned at Walmart, and a lot more. Ronda is a very engaging guest and Piper is clearly having a blast. This came real close to being the show of the week. THUMBS UP

Steve Austin Show #211 (4/14/15): Steve talks to Chris Bell, director of “Bigger, Stronger, Faster,” and Mark Bell, a former pro wrestler. Chris has a new documentary, “Prescription Thugs,” about America’s prescription drug problem, which leads to some interesting discussion about drugs in wrestling and society. The latter half of the show is about bodybuilding and working out, which isn’t nearly as interesting as the first half. THUMBS IN THE MIDDLE

Talk is Jericho #134 (4/15/15): Y2J sits down with Clint Gage, Michael Truly, and Nick Mundy, collectively known as Team Tiger Awesome, the team behind his new web series Nothing to Report. They talk about the genesis of the show and what went into making it. For 3 comic geniuses, there aren’t a lot of laughs to be found here, and the clips of the show they play make it sound like the worst thing ever. < Team Tiger Awesome’s interview starts at 16:54> THUMBS DOWN

The Ross Report #61 (4/15/15): Shawn Michaels drops by to plug his new book. They talk about his finding faith, his comeback, whether he ever considered jumping to WCW, hunting, and thoughts on the current WWE product. Michaels gets into the JR spirit by complaining about hatewatching fans. Ross and Michaels also speculate about the HHH/Sting match at Mania (the interview was taped before the big show), which makes for riveting listening in April. A very disappointing interview, as Michaels sounds like he’d rather be anywhere else. <Michael’s interview starts at 39:55> THUMBS DOWN

Bauer & Pollock (4/8/15): A fun chat sees the duo running down the WWE schedule for the next year (with a shoutout to MookieGhana/Chris Harrington), the Briscoes turning down the WWE, Taz’s issues with TNA, WWE’s relationship with Canada, a possible new Samoan getting a WWE tryout, and the upcoming UFC shows. A discussion of baseball stadiums rounds out a fun show. THUMBS UP

Art of Wrestling #245 (4/16/15): Part 2 with “Rowdy” Roddy Piper. They cover his time in Hollywood, They Live, the aborted Tag Team show, being a family man in wrestling, and the time Piper painted himself half black for Wrestlemania VI. Again, if you’ve followed Piper’s other appearances you will have heard a lot of these stories before (did you know Andre the Giant and Arnold Skaaland threw out the solution so Piper couldn’t get the paint off?), but Piper has rarely come off so seemingly honest and sympathetic. THUMBS UP

Human Podcast Machine #18 (4/16/15): Former WWE announcer and current ESPN anchor Todd Grisham is the guest. There’s a bit about life as a WWE announcer (and getting screamed at by Vince McMahon), and a lot about the current sports broadcasting scene. Grisham has a wicked wit and casually rattles off a bunch of wicked digs at Taz. Like the Jonathon Coachman show, this one is almost shockingly good. The description notes “Taz also briefly mentions his current status,” which is true, because all he says is he’ll talk about his current status soon. THUMBS UP

Steve Austin – Unleashed #212 (4/16/15): The episode starts out pretty interesting, as Steve rails pretty hard at Dolph Ziggler and Neville for the lack of selling on a DDT (the episode is actually titled “Effective Use of the DDT”). Steve sounds as passionate as he has in months. The rest of the show is yet another mailbag outing, with some good questions about wrestling gear and Steve’s football career, and some lesser queries about dogs and margaritas. THUMBS IN THE MIDDLE

The Jim Cornette Experience #73 (4/16/15): “It’s a political and social issue show,” says the description. No. Just no. They play a clip of a discussion of Duck Dynasty from the RWR Podcast. And then the RWR guy joins the show. Everyone bashes Republicans for seemingly hours. I’m from Massachusetts and I found all this interminable. And there is about 20 minutes of wrestling talk at the start, but it’s Jim complaining about TNA paychecks, intergender wrestling, and concussion lawsuits. Among the worst podcasts you’ll hear this year. THUMBS DOWN

Talk is Jericho #135 (4/17/15): William Regal talks to Chris at Center Stage in Atlanta, appropriately enough. Regal talks about his early days wrestling in England, quitting being Big Daddy’s tag partner, his WCW tenure, hitting rock bottom and getting back on his feet in the WWE. Regal also drops some knowledge on presenting yourself and working that all young wrestlers should hear. There are some bits from other Regal podcast appearances, but he’s always a fun guest and this is a very good show. Regal’s interview starts at 16:00> THUMBS UP & BEST OF THE WEEK