Ravishing Rick Rude was a man who not only dominated the upper mid-card in the late 1980s and 1990s, he also emitted an aura of confidence and swagger that most men straight up envied. In addition to that he also gave the Ultimate Warrior his first WWF loss at WrestleMania V (with the help of Bobby Heenan).
On Friday, January 13th Bruce Prichard took on the subject of all things Rick Rude and while the subject matter might have breached the line into NSFW at time, it was nevertheless a monumental podcast.
#8 – Rick Loved A Fight
Bruce says that Rick Rude was notorious for starting trouble outside of the ring. He loved to fight and was never one to mess with. Ribbing him was off the table, and when there was no trouble to be had, he sometimes made it up for himself.
Prichard says that Rude would often go out to a bar after the wrestling matches with his overly attractive girlfriend and send her out in the midst of the bar while separating himself from her. But he never took his eye off of his beautiful arm candy. He would pay close attention to her interactions with the patrons of the bar, and when he inevitably noticed someone hitting on her he would spring into action.
Bruce says Percy Pringle had many stories about how Rick Rude would intentionally get guys to hit on his girlfriend so he could fight them. Rude loved to confront the other guy and start an argument with them which would ideally lead to a bar room brawl, and nobody wanted to tangle with Rick Rude. This just goes to show that if you’re ever out at a bar and see an attractive girl, it’s always a good idea to check to make sure that the wrestling show isn’t in town before making your move.
#7 – Stories Behind The Rude Awakening Segments
Bruce says that all of the girls who were pulled into the ring out of the audience for the Rude Awakening segments were screened ahead of time. Prichard says that they didn’t even have to pay most of them to participate in the angle.
Prichard says that all he would have to say was, “Hey, you wanna be on TV,” and that was usually all it took. The fact that the girls got to get in the ring and tongue kiss the ravishing one was just the icing on the cake.
Bruce said that he would usually ask a few girls in the crowd if they would want to participate in the segment and get consent forms signed for all of them. Rude would then have the girls pointed out to him so he could scan the crowd and decide which one of the agreeable females he wanted to pull into the ring and make out with that night.
Not a bad gig.
#6 – The Time Jake Roberts Ribbed Rude Big Time
Bruce Prichard tells a story that is filled with rumor and innuendo, but nevertheless it has been vetted by several members of the locker-room. Apparently Rick was backstage one night when he confidentially pointed to one of the girls backstage and said that he wanted to pick her to be the recipient of that night’s Rude Awakening. Unbeknownst to him that girl happened to be Jake Robert’s “traveling companion”, often referred to as a “ring rat.”
Jake convinced the girl to do the deal while explaining that it paid $500 (which equates to approximately $1070.93 today when adjusted for inflation). She agreed to do the spot, but before she went out to deep tongue kiss Rude in the middle of the ring, Jake had her “pull a Lewinski” on him so her mouth was full of the Snake’s… snake juice.
When they were in the ring performing the segment Jake’s “traveling companion” kissed Rick deeply, looked him in the eyes, and said, “that was from Jake.” Apparently Rick was wise to the rib immediately.
Prichard says that while he doesn’t know if every detail of the story is factual, but Rick was extremely hot when he burst through the curtain and wanted to find Jake Roberts to have a discussion with him pronto.
#5 – Rick Rude Was Very Creative
Bruce Prichard says that Rick Rude was a man who was very invested in his character. He would often come up with creative aspects of his character and feuds that are some of the most memorable aspects of his character.
Prichard says that wearing his flashy robe to the ring and airbrushing a picture of Jake Robert’s wife on his crotch was Rick’s idea. He explains that Rick cutting his hair during the Ultimate Warrior feud leading to Summerslam 1990’s steel cage match for the World Title was also the ravishing one’s idea.
Prichard does give some credit elsewhere as he explains that when Rick Rude took off his regular tights to reveal that he was still wearing tights with Jake Robert’s wife’s face airbrushed on the crotch was Pat Patterson’s creation. Bruce does an amazing impression of Pat Patterson, although he makes him sound more like an Italian plumber from a popular video game franchise and less like a French-Canadian.
Prichard also explains that the vignette package showing Rick Rude training for his Summerslam match against The Ultimate Warrior was a blatant rip-off from the movie, Rocky.
Bruce says that it was Rick’s idea to modify the belt to add extra length to the straps because he wanted to wear it with pride and create a great reveal when he opened his robe. He says that if a worker was planned to hold a belt for a while he would get to make slight modifications to his liking.
Bruce says that he never liked the way that Ultimate Warrior, The Rock, or even Stone Cold treated their belts when they were champions because they threw them around the ring. He says that Ultimate Warrior’s belt was essentially beat to crap before his run with it had concluded. He says that he thought that belts should be treated as treasures and not something that could be easily tossed around.
#4 – Bruce Explains Booking Strategies And Rick’s Steroid Usage
Bruce Prichard explains that the reason that there was never a real finish during the final match on the Saturday Night’s Main Event broadcasts was because these shows were essentially used as trailer for live house shows. Nobody got real finishes in any of those main event matches because they wanted people to go to the WWF show when it was in their town to see the match actually have a conclusion. He explains that the thought was that more people would come to see them live if they didn’t “give away the finish” on free television.
Prichard explains that Rick Rude wasn’t initially on the juice when he made it to the WWF. However, there was a time when Rick took a break from the business to spend some time with his family and vacation. The general rule of thumb in the business was that when boys got back from their vacations they were in worse shape because they hadn’t been working out, but Rick wanted to be the exception to the rule.
Bruce explains that Rick allegedly started taking steroids during one of these family vacations to come back more than ring-ready and in better shape than when he left.
#3 – Rude’s Troubles With The Warrior
Bruce Prichard explains that Rick Rude had a problem with the Ultimate Warrior that stretched even after their rivalry had concluded. He explains that Rude and Warrior tangled in the WCCW before the two made it to Stanford, and once they were paired together the trouble only continued.
Bruce tells the story of the infamous “pose-down” segment where the plan was for Warrior to botch his pose when Rude sprayed him in the eyes with tanning oil. Warrior was supposed to sell the spray to the eyes and Rude was going to hit Warrior with the lead pipe a few times in order to cheat, but Warrior didn’t sell the spray to the eyes one bit. Instead the Ultimate One began “hulking up” even more and began to open his mouth appearing to drink the foreign substance. Bruce says that Rude was so furious about this no-sell that he opted to just beat Warrior with the lead pipe, giving him quite a few stiff shots and hitting him longer than initially planned to squelch Warrior’s momentum in the segment.
Bruce also says that after the Rude and Warrior rivalry had concluded that Warrior would give a bottle of French wine to Andre the Giant every night every night during their feud. Rick was incensed that he had busted his hump to get Warrior over and never received such a favor from the creator of destrucity. They pointed out that Warrior was probably bribing Andre to take it easy on him during their match that night, but it still rubbed Rick Rude the wrong way.
#2 – Rick’s No Shows
Rick Rude and the WWF’s relationship began to get rocky when Rick suffered an injury and couldn’t compete in the ring. Rick Rude was injured but WWF was still using his likeness in house shows to promote the events. Prichard explains that it was a different world in regard to advertising back then as well. WWF didn’t have the luxury of immediately altering their promoted shows via an online distribution service or social media. They instead had to create their advertising six to eight weeks in advance and send it off to the towns without any chance to change it later.
Rick eventually quit WWF because he claimed that Vince and company were using his likeness to bring in money and he wasn’t receiving his just dues. Prichard explains that Rick was being paid, however he was just getting a fraction of what he would have made if he would have been at the show. Bruce explains that while he doesn’t know what Rick was being paid, when he was in charge of cutting such checks he typically paid talent 33% of the net that they would have made if they would have made the town in this situation.
Bruce explains that all Rick would have had to do to get his full check was to make the town and cut a promo explaining that he was injured. After that they would have had someone take his place to battle Warrior that night, but instead Rude opted to stay home.
This was a huge spot of contention between Rick and the company and it resulted in Rick Rude leaving WWF completely in October 1990.
#1 – Rick’s Monday Night Omnipresence
Bruce Prichard explains that he got a call from Vince in 1997 out of the blue when Vince said that he wanted Rick Rude to come back. Therefore, on August 11th Rick Rude made his return to WWF television as Shawn Michael’s “insurance policy.” However, Vince didn’t want to sign Rude to an actual contract. Instead, he wanted to sign Rick Rude to a series of one-night contracts meaning that every time he was scheduled to be on television Bruce had to get a separate waiver and contract signed before Rude could breach the curtain. Prichard admitted that this was a paperwork nightmare. Bruce says that Rick was usually paid in cash as well.
Prichard says that Vince was advised on several occasions to sign Rick to an actual contact, but he would always indicate that he wanted to continue with the previous agreement on a night by night basis.
After the Montreal Screw Job, Eric Bischoff heard a rumor that Rick Rude might be gettable. Rude was a man that was present for one of the most infamous occasions in professional wresting history and was working on one-off deals, therefore Bischoff pounced on the opportunity to sign him. So, on November 17th, 1997 Rick Rude appeared on both WCW and WWF television.
Raw was a taped show that night and Nitro was airing live, this was more than enough of an opportunity for Bischoff to take advantage of the situation.
Bruce says that Bischoff received word that the DX segment was going to go on later in the show that night on Raw, so he scheduled Rick to make his WCW debut in the opening segment of Nitro. Rick Rude appeared on WCW television sporting only a mustache as he declared that Shawn Michaels should have never been champion, while Bruce says Vince McMahon and company were watching in “Edit 1” at the Stanford WWF studios taping live commentary. Bruce said that the only words Vince uttered when he saw this was, “mother$#?*!.”
Bruce explains that there was no time to re-edit the show by that point and when Rick Rude appeared on WWF television over an hour after he had been on Nitro sporting a full beard it was a moment that rocked the professional wresting landscape. Bruce also says that depending on which market you were in at the time, Rick Rude was also on ECW television that week. Therefore, Rick Rude appeared on WCW, WWF, and ECW television in the same week, a feat that no other man will ever be able to duplicate.
Bruce says that the policy changed dramatically after that as Vince would lock off of his talents up in a contact after that point to avoid future shenanigans such as this.
There are many more stories and subjects covered in this nearly three-hour-long podcast. Bruce and Conrad discuss Rick Rude’s death in full detail along with theories surrounding it and cap off the broadcast with a great story about how Bruce was once tricked into ribbing Rude. From Rick Rude’s drugs of choice to how well his junk operated (yes, they went there) this podcast isn’t one that needs to be missed by anyone who remembers the ravishing one.
You can listen to the full episode below.