MLW star Josef Samael recently spoke on the Shining Wizards podcast about the success of Contra Unit, and what it feels like for the promotion to be broadcast on VICE TV. Highlights from the interview are below.
On the success of Contra Unit:
“I think that you’ve got a heel faction that is multi-faceted. You’ve got a narrator in myself that’s able to hit the points in the proper way. There’s always a hero in peril. It’s very believable. What we do, how we move, how we maneuver, what we do to the babyface… It’s well built. It’s well staffed, and everybody pretty much does their job. Everybody comes out and really kills it on each end. Behind the camera, in front of the camera, on both sides of the fence. We’ve been really lucky. It’s something that’s special, and not just Contra. Contra is definitely special, but just all the players involved. It’s something that you really, really hope for when you’re performing. It’s something that you really really hope for when you’re creating, and you’re involved in stuff. It’s one of those deals where planets align. And we’ve had that. I guess Contra is pretty good. We’ve had it with LA PARK. We’ve had it with Tom Lawlor. We’ve had it with our debut. Me & Jacob (Fatu) have had it in PCW Ultra. If I really had to give it an answer, it’s believability and credibility. If you have a believable and credible heel, and you have a believable storyline, then you can lose yourself in it. And I think that’s what pro wrestling is missing, so we tend to stand out when we’re just doing what you’re supposed to be doing in pro wrestling.”
On Contra Unit’s longevity:
“I think it’s believability. We believe our own bullshit. And therefore, people buy into it. We’re just doing our jobs. We’re fun to write for. I always look at professional wrestlers like action figures. If they’d be cool to play with, and if they had cool accessories, then they can get over. If you look at a wrestler, and he’s kind of boring and he doesn’t have anything like me, for instance. I’ve got a fireball, I’ve got a spike and I’m in wrestling gear, I’m in a suit. Fatu, the same thing. He’s got the braids. All the different things about us and what we do. I just think it’s exciting and I think when somebody throws the ball over the plate for you, you either hit it for a home run or you don’t. And I think that everybody in our group and everybody that we’ve worked with has hit it for home runs. I’m very, very lucky and fortunate and grateful that we’ve been in the main event picture since day one. And the fact that we’ve been able to stay in the main event picture, and the fact that we’ve been able to keep it exciting, and the fact that we’ve been the only thing that’s been a constant and it’s never gotten stale – I’m just grateful to be in this position and I’m happy with the trust, and I’m happy that in all my years in professional wrestling and all of Jacob’s talent… I’m just happy that it’s working.”
His thoughts on MLW being on VICE:
“Dark Side of The Ring Is super-hot, and I don’t know much about anything. I do have a lot of jobs at MLW, but the TV is not one of them. So I’m kind of on a need to know basis when it comes to that sort of thing. From the outside looking in, man it feels great. If feels like a really cool spot. Could you really get a better spot in wrestling right now? Dark Side of The Ring is super, super hot. I think that we need to do something that is, again, completely different than everybody else. I think we need to serve a product that nobody else is serving. And then we’ll stand out. If we try to do what other companies are doing, we might look like copycats, we might look lesser than. We might not actually get what we’re trying to do the way people do it because it’s not our idea. I’m not saying we do that at all. I’m just saying the approach should be for us to be fresh, innovative, and be ourselves and be the best MLW that MLW can be and be in total competition with ourselves and just kill it and do what we do, and use all the people that got us here, and just put the spotlight on all the guys that are killing it, and don’t get away from that.”
(Thanks to Shining Wizards for sending us the quotes)