Climbing The Ladder: Damien Sandow

For my own grandiose purposes and penchant for articulating myself in a pretentiously overblown fashion, I have allied myself to the intellectual saviour of the masses, Damien Sandow. Never you mind what you may hear from those naysayers who would have you believe that ingrates like Dean Ambrose or Fandango are worthier than he. Throughout this written composition, I will outline why you grovelling miscreants should be salivating at the prospect of Mr Sandow appropriating the Money in the Bank briefcase and a future World Heavyweight title opportunity.

Damien Sandow on the micIf you are an ignoramus, you would have failed to ascertain that early on in his career Mr Sandow laboured under the less refined identity of Aaron Stevens. The young whelp Stevens received tutelage from the esteemed Killer Kowalski; the same gentleman who educated Triple H in the ways of the squared circle.

Having acquired more wrestling experience on the independent circuit, Stevens tested his mettle at WWE by gracing us with his presence on Sunday Night Heat in 2002. Although Stevens fought gallantly, it was all for nought as this saw him capitulate to a ruthless reprobate named Steven Richards. He also suffered the ignominy of having his fingers brazenly broken by Raven. Fortunately in spite of these humblings, as Aaron “The Idol” Stevens, he progressed to Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW), a developmental territory for aspiring WWE Superstars.

Aaron Stevens ‘the Maharaja of the Ménage-A-Trois-JahMuch to my relief, Mr Sandow eventually eschewed the salacious immorality of the Aaron Stevens ‘the Maharaja of the Ménage-A-Trois-Jah a superficial womanizer whose antics would surely be too hot for PG in this day and age. One must surely hold a degree to be able to pronounce such a misguided monicker. And what self-respecting gentleman would be seen with engaging in lewd practices with floozies like Beth Phoenix and Shelly Martinez? A three-way dance indeed. For shame!

Stevens toiled at OVW until he emerged for his big break on WWE pay per view as… the Easter Bunny? Dispel your murmurs of discontent – it was true that your intellectual saviour of the masses was bedecked in the gaudy garb of this seasonal creature. At Vengeance 2003, those insouciant barbarians the Acolytes Protection Agency (APA) called for a bar room brawl. The Easter Bunny was a casualty of their brand of brutality as Bradshaw drove the hapless quadruped through the bar’s glass façade. Unsurprisingly, the Easter Bunny did not return to the televisual stage and the man who portrayed him limped back to OVW.

Teachers Pets: Idol Stevens (left), Michelle McCool and KC JamesA mere glimmer of the intellect that would become Mr Sandow appeared in his first full debut as a WWE Superstar on Smackdown in 2006. With KC James, he became Idol Stevens, one of two Teacher’s Pets aligned with Michelle McCool. This rather bland duo feuded with the then Smackdown Tag Team Champions Brian Kendrick and Paul London – culminating in a title match at No Mercy in 2006. They lost. Sadly again for Stevens he
resurfaced fleetingly only to disappear from whence he came.

Where is Mr Sandow in all this I hear you pitifully cry? Allow me to beg your indulgence for one moment and to temper your impatience. In your rashness you have not considered that Stevens’ WWE release was merely a part of Mr Sandow’s masterplan. He acquired a wealth of wrestling knowledge through wrestling with independent promotions, OVW once more and then a soujourn in Puerto Rico. This lay the foundation for a second spell with WWE.

Colonel Damien Sandow (left)At last, you gleefully yelp! Damien Sandow had arrived in WWE. If you believe that, your thoughts deceive you. It is true that Mr Sandow had dispensed with the name of Aaron Stevens while maturing his abilities with Florida Championship Wrestling (FCW). But the Sandow you would have witnessed back then was a military man bedecked in black with a beret: Colonel Damien Sandow. This ongoing trend of peculiar personas continued unabated. Even more strangely, he won the FCW Tag Team titles with Titus O’Neill. I can confidently assure you they were not making millions of dollars.

After losing the tag titles Richie Steamboat and Seth Rollins, Mr Sandow embraced his true calling as a highbrow intellectual saviour of the unwashed masses. In his true guise, he even beat Seth ‘Shield’ Rollins for the FCW 15 Championship. The fact that he lost it to Richie Steamboat is a mere detail. A grander stage lay in wait.

After years of enduring the trials and tribulations of developmental and seasoning his skills in the independents, Damien Sandow appeared in a series of vignettes to announce his impending Smackdown debut in April 2012. Mr Sandow’s insistence upon performing in the ring at his own choosing was a delicious masterstroke and indicative of his old-school mentality. This fine gentleman’s persona is clearly patterned after The Genius – Lanny Poffo the brother of Macho Man Randy Savage – also a verbose wrestling intellectual who pulverised his foes with poetry and in-ring prowess. The beauty inherent in Mr Sandow’s character is that his ‘Genius’ turn is fit for the twenty-first century as he continually delivers a masterclass in contempt for inferior intellects and the moral decay inherent within the WWE Universe.

Damien Sandow pinDo not mistake my intentions by thinking that Mr Sandow’s claim on the Money in the Bank briefcase is founded upon entitlement because he has ‘paid his dues’ alone. Rather I think that Mr Sandow possesses an in-ring savvy that his contemporaries lack; aligned with an opinionated, erudite personality that
causes ignoramuses to heap scorn upon him.

Notice the finer details of Mr Sandow’s character, like the manner in which he holds the microphone like a fine glass of cognac. His subtle mannerisms in the ring. Or his athletically elegant cartwheel and graceful backward roll after a Russian leg sweep. When inside the ring for a promo, he carries himself with dignity and class in contrast to the ruffian charm of main-event performers like The Rock, Shawn Michaels and Triple H. Wherever he is positioned on the card, this virtuoso of vocabulary astounds with his wit. Whether singing his version of Randy Orton’s theme music. Or joining tag accomplice Cody Rhodes in lampooning the New Age Outlaws’ catchphrase “Your ass better call somebody” with a much more genteel interpretation: “Your posterior better contact someone at once” .

Yet Mr Sandow seems to end up on the losing end. Why? Because he is surely an able villain whom you delight in receiving his comeuppance. This role he plays masterfully and you should be ashamed of delighting in his disappointment.

Following in the footsteps of his forbear The Genius – who managed a count-out victory against Hulk Hogan at his zenith – I believe that the occasion has arrived for your intellectual saviour to advance further and ascend to World title supremacy at Money in the Bank. His first attempt in 2012 was unsuccessful all because of a certain Show-off. Mr Sandow was also disgracefully denied the opportunity to showcase his talents on the grandest stage of them all – at Wrestlemania 29 – and his eminent presence and ability are too precious to be wasted in obscurity.

To summarise Mr Sandow’s chances of being victorious against his competitors and silencing his detractors, you all should cherish his uncommon combination of mental acuity and physical agility. His is a voice of experience and eloquence backed with excellent ringcraft and deserving of elevation to the elusive preserve of the WWE main event. It is time for me to conclude my manifold protestations in favour of Damien Sandow’s candidature for the Money in the Bank briefcase. Consider yourself enlightened, entertained and enriched for having paid ample attention. Oh, and… You’re welcome.

  • Dan kelly

    What a brilliantly written article. I agree with it all. The silence is shocking.

  • danarda

    Forgive me, learned friend, for my tardiness in responding to your discerning taste. I hasten to add: You're welcome.

  • Kiddlover12345

    An exquisite article in which the components of a exceptional literary piece comply.

  • danarda

    Kiddlover12345, you are clearly an enlightened reader; demonstrating a keen grasp of the vernacular. I doff my cap to you.