Saturday, May 11, 2013

A Guide to Unoffiial Events at Anime Central

Hello everyone, STVO here with an actual website update (yeah, haven't updated since January and primarily up on Facebook, lol.)  Anyway, Anime Central is this week and while there are plenty of great things going on at the con, there's many other things that are going on the "Unofficial 4th Day of Anime Central" which we know as Thursday.  There's also at least one going on after Anime Central too (but connected to an now official Anime Central event.) For details about the official Anime Central events, be sure to go to or download the Guidebook app on your smart phone or tablet and get the Anime Central 2013 guide, but for the unofficial fun, read on here!!!!

THURSDAY: Of course I'm going to start off with an event hosted by myself. ;D  Anyway, this is my second gathering at Mitsuwa as the first one had a positive turn out and this one is looking to be better. Come join me and many others as we socialize over lunch and get our Japanese food fix as we head over to the big event.  Event will be taking place from 1-3 at the Mitsuwa Market in Arlington Heights. More details here!

THURSDAY: It may not be an official event, but it's been a long-standing event at Anime Central through the official ACen.Org Message Boards (  If you're a message board regular  or haven't even been on the page before, it's an open event going on from the lower area of the Hyatt Regency O'Hare Hotel under the "Glass Stairway".  More details here and here

THURSDAY (21+): Going into it's third year, the late night Meet n Greet offers a social event for the older con-goers.  This year will be even better as it moves to a closer to the Hyatt location of Kings in the Park at Rosemont!  Come chat, drink, eat, or bowl with one of the hottest parties before the big party we know as ACen itself.  The event starts at 9. More details here! 

FRIDAY AND SATURDAY: There will be many room parties but this one was requested to be posted.  There will be drinking and so therefore you must be 21+ to participate. More details about this event here

FRIDAY: Gather with some other creatures of the undead for this photoshoot.  Contains Resident Evil, High School of the Dead, and more.  Please click the link here for more details.

SATURDAY:  The crew of Street Pass Chicago will be holding a gathering on Saturday.  Please check their Facebook page for more details! Click here!

SUNDAY: In addition to WWE Cosplay Day (which is now an official event at ACen for the Cosplay Photoshoot), WWE Extreme Rules is that night on Pay-Per-View.  The PPV starts at 7:00 PM CST and after Anime Central, I will be holding a meet-up at Chicago City Limits in Schaumburg. I am going to try and be there around 5-6:00 (tables fill up!) Information for both Cosplay Day and the Meet up can be found here!

That's it for what I have been posted.  Be sure to follow the Anime Central Facebook Page for other gatherings not posted in the Official Program or Guidebook App.  If you liked this article, please follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube to be read more of my opinions and see some of my other projects! Thanks for reading!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

STVO Universe WWE Royal Rumble 2013 Predictions

Hey all, it’s been awhile! I’m hoping to do some more non-wrestling updates throughout the year but I’ve been meaning to update this site for awhile and what way to open up the first update of 2013 with an event such as the Royal Rumble! The start of the Road to WrestleMania!!! The event is this Sunday and I am here to give you my thoughts on whom I want to win and whom I think I’ll win!

Also if you’re in the Chicagoland area, make sure you join a group of friends and me for the Royal Rumble viewing at Chicago City Limits, in Schaumburg, IL.  Check out the Facebook event page for more details!

Now onto the Predictions!

YouTube Pre-Show – United States Championship Match: Antonio Cesaro © vs. The Miz:
This will make a great match.  Personally I think Antonio is a great superstar and has been very impressive with most any superstar her works with and even with the guys who can’t compete to save their lives (Great Khali, Brodus Clay) he saves the matches by showing his impress feats of strength with how he can lift them and hold them.  The Miz, while many people have been complaining about his face turn being weak, I disagree. I think he is fine as a face and has for most part been able to connect with the crowd.  However, I do not like that “Ric Flair has passed the torch” and have considered it unnecessary.  On top of that, Miz’s figure four looks bad.  For the mean time though, that won’t make a difference in this match whether they’re trying to push Miz as a top face or not.  I think right now the WWE sees they have something going very well with Antonio Cesaro and they will have him retain and continue a very strong United States championship reign.  The Miz will have plenty of more time to establish himself as a face.

Who I Want To Win: Anotonio Cesaro      Who I Think Will Win: Antonio Cesaro

Tag-Team Championship Match – Team Hell No © vs. Team Rhodes Scholars:
These two teams works very well together I’ll give them that.  If you read my predictions for Team Hell No prior to them becoming champions, I said I was enjoying them.  3-4 months have passed and now things have changed.  I love Kane and Daniel Bryan and they can be funny, but this group has become way overdone in terms of comedy.  At first the tag-team division looks like it was being revitalized, but the lack of the WWE pushing teams like The Usos, The Prime Time Players, the Colons jobbing to Freak the Mighty (Hornswoggle/Great Khali) weekly, and then injuries for individuals such as Tyson Kidd (was he even still in a tag team?), Rey Mysterio, and Sin Cara getting injured, it then just became about Hell No and Rhodes Scholars.  I think it’s time for Hell No to split. They’re just not that funny anymore and they’ve held the titles long enough.  This one can go either way though honestly.  The dreadful Dr. Shelby graduation segment from the previous week on Raw was getting a lot of fan cheers (a few Dr. Shelby chants as well) so maybe WWE would stay convinced to keep them a team. I’m hoping not.  Overall though, I think that WWE wants to give Cody and Damien a run with the titles even if they decide to keep Team Hell No an actual tag-team.

Who I Want To Win: Rhodes Scholars      Who I Think Will Win: Rhodes Scholars

World Heavyweight Championship Match – Last Man Standing Match: Alberto Del Rio © vs. The Big Show:
Overall I’m very “eh” about this match.  It will likely be a decent brawl but it’s the match I’m least interested in on this PPV.  Alberto Del Rio’s face turn started off lame but its kind of growing on me, still has some work to do.  Personally if I were booking, I would have just made this a regular one-on-one as they already did the Last Man Standing match, which resulted in Alberto winning the WHC title.  The past few weeks have done little to convince me that Big Show stood any chance in winning the title.  Take Smackdown last night for example: he got counted out in a three-on-three match with him and Rhodes Scholars taking on ADR/Team Hell No. Yeah Big Show retaliated at the end, but I’m still not convinced.  I guess they just needed to get Big Show’s rematch clause out of the way, that’s fine.  Let’s just get the WHC title chase to WrestleMania more invigorating. And while I doubt it, is it really too much to ask that the WHC title not be the first match to open WrestleMania 29?

Who I Want To Win:  Alberto Del Rio       Who I Think Will Win: Alberto Del Rio

WWE Championship Match – CM Punk © vs. The Rock:
Match of the night, hands down. I trust Punk more on putting on a better match with The Rock than John Cena. It’s very amazing that CM Punk has held the WWE Championship for 400+ days. Never would I have seen this title reign going this long in today’s WWE, it’s definitely one of the best and most interesting things they have going here.  The Shield is banned from ringside and if they get involved, CM Punk will be stripped of the WWE Championship.  While I love this title reign and love to see it go until WrestleMania, I don’t think that the WWE brought in The Rock for this event just to see him lose this match. While there is always a chance that maybe they’ll wait until Elimination Chamber to win the championship, but honestly I think they want to have The Rock look strong going into WrestleMania (for his alleged rematch with John Cena, ugh…)

This is a prediction I wouldn’t mind getting wrong, but here I’m thinking The Great One will “finally” be WWE Champion for the 8th time.  Paul Heyman and/or a few others may try to get involved, but I think Rock will overcome the odds and win the title.

Who I Want To Win: CM Punk      Who I Think Will Win: The Rock

Royal Rumble Match: 
I don’t really have bold predictions here.  Right now I think they are going to get Randy Orton back in to the World Heavyweight Championship scene with this match, possibly as a heel.  It’s been a long time since he’s been a regular in the main event scene and with so many superstars turning face (The Miz, Alberto Del Rio, Sheamus) they probably could use another heel. Honestly, I’m not too sure though and there’s a very good chance John Cena could win and just challenge The Rock for the WWE Championship in which many of us will refer to as “Once in a Lifetime… PART TWO!!!!” I would like a nice surprise though, maybe Daniel Bryan? Have him lose the tag-titles earlier in the night and then have him go on to WrestleMania as a top face to take on Dolph Ziggler for the WHC? Doubtful but I’d love it.  Below I will post whom I think have good chance at winning, some people I’d like to see win, and a few surprise entrants, I’d like to see. I’m going to start off by listing the confirmed entrants.

Confirmed Participants: John Cena, Sheamus, Randy Orton, Dolph Ziggler, Heath Slater, Jinder Mahal, Drew McIntyre, Antonio Cesaro, Wade Barrett, The Miz, Ryback, NXT Superstar TBD, Daniel Bryan, Kane, The Great Khali, Kofi Kingston, Titus O’Neil, Darren Young, and 2 mystery entrants confirmed from the dirt sheets (won’t reveal here, you can find on NoDQ, Bleacher Report, and many other websites, lol.)

With that said we have about 20 confirmed participants.

My 5 Picks for Royal Rumble Winners (Ordered from Most to Least Likely):

1.     Randy Orton
2.     John Cena
3.     Sheamus
4.     Dolph Ziggler
5.     CM Punk

5 Guys I’d Like To See Win (Most Want to Least Want):
1.     Daniel Bryan
2.     Wade Barrett
3.     Dolph Ziggler (Goal to Become Undisputed Champion at WrestleMania 29)
4.     Kofi Kingston
5.     Brock Lesnar

5 Surprise Entrants I’d Like To See (No Order):
1.     Ken Shamrock
2.     Gangrel
3.     MVP
4.     Shelton Benjamin
5.     Man Mountain Rock (For Shits and Giggles)

That is it for my Rumble Predictions! Look for more STVO Universe updates soon! In the meantime, make sure to like the STVO Universe Page on Facebook and subscribe to The STVOUniverse YouTube page!

Thank you for reading!!!

(All Images Courtesy of

Sunday, September 16, 2012

WWE Night of Champions Predictions

           (Started writing on Thursday, finished writing on the 16th) This weekend is WWE Night of Champions, the Pay-Per-View where every WWE championship title is defended.  Personally I think that should happen on every PPV but then again there are 6 titles in the WWE it would be an awful lot of matches that were strictly title matches each PPV. Maybe they should cut back on the number of titles? Anyway, that’s really another topic for another day. The Pay Per View is looking decent and it is on my birthday (September 16th) but I am choosing to celebrate that day with some friends instead of catching the Pay Per View. With that said, I decided with the lack of site updates that it was time I made an update before my birthday weekend begins. So with that said, here are my thoughts and predictions for this weekend’s Pay-Per-View.

YouTube Pre-Show Battle Royal – Winner Gets United States Championship Title Shot That Night Against Antonio Caesaro ©: The WWE has a large roster and without any official names and number of contenders listed, I really don’t know how to predict this one.  Christian previously won the last No. 1 Contender Battle Royal for the Intercontinental Championship. This along with him apparently getting time off the road leads me to think that he won’t be appearing in this bout.  Since Santino lost the title to Antonio Caesaro and they kind of have been continuing with the feud, I’m just going to pick him as my predicted winner. Someone I think that should/needs to be elevated is Tyson Kidd. Even if he didn’t win the title after the battle royal, just this match leading to a feud between him and Antonio and just putting him as a more high profile star would make me happy.  Either way, I doubt any of these winners will defeat Antonio for the title right away as WWE seems to have faith in him.

Who I Want To Win The Battle Royal: Tyson Kidd
Who I Think Will Win The Battle Royal: Santino Marella
Who I Want to Win the Title Match: Antonio Caesaro
Who I Think Will Win the Title Match: Antonio Caesaro

WWE Divas Championship Match – Layla © vs. Kaitlyn: Another Divas match that I don’t care about. Because I feel like I’ve been negative on every Divas match on my PPV predictions, I’ve decided to say at least one thing positive about this match/feud: The Eve Torres playing Ms. Nice Lady during this feud is kind of interesting I suppose. Other than that… Next Please!

Who I Want To Win: :Shrugs:            Who Will Win: New Divas Champion, Kaitlyn

WWE Intercontinental Championship Fatal Four –Way – The Miz © vs. Cody Rhodes vs. Rey Mysterio vs. Sin Cara: Added on Friday Night Smackdown, this should be a fun match.  Cody has worked well with Rey and Sin Cara for the matches in their feuds and The Miz himself is a pretty good worker too.  Personally, I don’t think we will see a title change in this match. Rumor has it, that WWE wants to continue to have Rey Mysterio and Sin Cara team up in matches and possibly square off at WrestleMania 29.  I don’t think any serious tension will happen with the two tonight (it’s too early) but the next title reign I see for Rey and Sin Cara’s first title will likely be the WWE tag-team championship at some point.  There’s a chance the belt may transition off of The Miz to Cody Rhodes, but personally, I just don’t see it happening with these recent strings of long last title reigns in the WWE (which I hope continue to happen!)  So I’m just going with Miz.

Who I Want To Win: The Miz Who I Think Will Win: The Miz

Randy Orton vs. Dolph Ziggler: What’s this?!? A Non-Title match on WWE NIGHT OF CHAMPIONS?!?!? Blasphemy I sez!  Anyway, this should be a good match. They had a match not too long ago on Raw that I thought was pretty solid and honestly, they are getting more time so they can only improve.  Dolph got a victory over Randy on Raw and he did lose to Chris Jericho at SummerSlam. There’s still time to him to lose a few matches to make him look vulnerable until he cashes in his Money in the Bank Briefcase (which may very well be on the PPV!)   Randy Orton has had a bit of losing streak since returning from his suspension. He’s lost to Alberto Del Rio and Dolph Ziggler as well, so I don’t think the WWE wants him to lose too much more times considering he is still a popular fan favorite.  While I always prefer Dolph Ziggler to Randy in terms of ring skills (and will select him as my who I want to win), it’s not a big deal as they need to have the briefcase holder lose before he cashes in and wins. So this victory will go towards Randy!

Who I Want To Win: Dolph Ziggler  Who I Think Will Win: Randy Orton

WWE Tag- Team Championship Match – R-Truth/Kofi Kingston © vs. Kane/Daniel Bryan: Starting this off, I’ll admit I didn’t like the Anger Management sessions these two were having up until Kane delivered the hilarious promo about his problems throughout life and the WWE (including electrocuting someone’s testicles.) Once that promo happened and Daniel Bryan and Kane were forced to “HUG IT OUT” and team up in tag-team matches.  Good comedy right there and while I wish Daniel Bryan was a world champ or at least in the title scene right now, this program gives them something to do and keep both men that I’m a fan of relevant.  Onto the tag- team match itself, while I really wanted to see the Prime Time Players finally win the tag-titles (I think they’re hilarious and one of the truly best teams in the WWE right now… not that there’s many others) I was getting tired of seeing them square off against R-Truth and Kofi Kingston and continuously losing.  Anyway, while I’d rather have people that actually are tag-teams team up instead of thrown together teams like this one, Daniel Bryan and Kane make a great comedic team. They might even have a few good tag-matches and I know the WWE seems to enjoy tag-teams with tension more often than not these days.  With that said and with Kofi/R-Truth boring me as a team, I see a title change happening tonight and it should be glorious!

Who I Want to Win: Kane and Daniel Bryan       
Who I Think Will Win: Kane and Daniel Bryan

World Heavyweight Championship Match – Sheamus © vs. Alberto Del Rio: It’s September and this feud is STILL going on?!?! End it already!!! I was bored with their Money in the Bank match and thought their SummerSlam match was just okay. The feud has done nothing for me as I don’t think Sheamus and Del Rio have good tension.  The addition of the Brogue Kick being banned was a decent idea for this match however Sheamus already had a strong entourage of moves in his set such as White Noise and the Razor’s Edge (not sure what they called it for him.) I like his new Irish Clover Leaf submission, however like I’ve talked to a friend in a wrestling group I post on Facebook with, he said he should have debuted that finisher at the PPV if they plan on having him win with it rather than use it on David Otunga during TV tapings. Right now they’re just hyping that Sheamus may be weak in this match without the Brogue Kick but now that they have shown him doing the new submission, one would think he’ll just win that way. They may throw us a curve ball by having Alberto Del Rio win (which with his stale character, I hope not) or a Dolph Ziggler MITB cash-in (I’m predicting they’ll wait.) Just let Sheamus win and find this man a new opponent please!

Who I Want To Win: Sheamus           Who I Think Will Win: Sheamus

WWE Championship Match – CM Punk © vs. John Cena: All good things must come to an end. Yes, I’m hinting that it will be time to end the reign of CM Punk unfortunately. I’m really hoping it won’t happen but considering it is in John Cena’s hometown, considering it has been several months since Cena hasn’t been a world champion in any capacity, I think it is time. Paul Heyman is now a new factor in this feud (which for me has really turned things around for this feud that I wasn’t really into before) but I think he will play a factor after the match somehow.  Any other person, I’m sure Paul Heyman would cause that person to lose to CM Punk, but this is John Cena we’re talking about here, WWE always has him find some way to win the match to make the ages 4-11 demographic happy and piss off the rest of the internet.  I don’t think this will end their feud, especially since I’m sure WWE would love the idea of doing a Hell in a Cell match between John Cena-CM Punk (which I’d enjoy as well) for the next PPV.  While I think it’s inevitable we see this title change hands, I’m not betting any money, so I won’t be upset if I’m wrong on this prediction.  On top of that, even Cena’s hometown crowd boos him.

Who I Want To Win: CM Punk           Who I Think Will Win: John Cena

Thank you for reading my Night of Champions Predictions.   I’m hoping to do more updates in the future. Follow me on Facebook for news on my next updates. Have a good Sunday everybody!

Friday, July 13, 2012

WWE Money in The Bank Predictions

My favorite secondary WWE PPV of the year is this Sunday and it features two ladder matches!  One ladder match contains a briefcase that allows the winner to cash in a contract for the WWE Championship (considered the biggest title of the company.) The other match contains a briefcase allowing the winner to cash in an opportunity for the World Heavyweight Championship (the company’s second biggest title.)  I will be honest in admitting while this PPV has impressed me the last two years, the episodes of WWE Raw leading into this event have been very weak and have not sold me on this PPV all too well.  I will get into it further in my predictions.  Fortunately, I think the World Heavyweight Championship ladder match might be enough to save the show.  Remember, if you need a place to watch the PPV, come join me and several other friends/WWE fans at Chicago City Limits in Schaumburg, IL this Sunday! More details here and be sure to RSVP!  Now onto the predictions!

WWE Money in the Bank YouTube Pre-Show Tag-Team Championship(?) Match – R-Truth/Kofi Kingston © vs. Hunico/Camacho: 
Okay, so running down the card as I usually do for the PPV, I always notice the WWE has the two world title matches in place as well as two other matches and maybe a YouTube Pre-Show match.  I know at the last PPV they determined the number one contenders for the tag-team championship with “The Prime Time Playas” of Titus O’Neil and Darren Young.  The team may not be technically the best in the ring but they did have a lot of charisma and were catching among fans of the Internet.  They even added the managerial services of A.W. (formerly Abraham Washington in what I believe was a further attempt to get them over.  They never got to cash-in their match opportunity and I guess no further explanation will be given. Oh WWE logic…

Anyway, I’m not likely catching the match because they don’t play the Pre-Show matches on the pre-PPV “buy this show before we start” shows for some reason as it’s usually just Scott Stanford recapping all the feuds before the show starts.  It’s okay as I’m not very enthusiastic for either tag-team (I like Kofi and Truth as individuals but I just can’t care about them as a team.)  With this said, Hunico/Camacho appear to just be jobbers that can’t convince me that the WWE want to do something better with them (but hey if Sgt. Slaughter or Hacksaw Jim Duggan come on TV, they’ll be guaranteed a squash on live TV!) all while Kofi/R-Truth are likely important to WWE but not important enough for a big program at this time.  So the thrown together tag-team will remain champions for another PPV in my mind!

Who I Want To Win: Kofi/R-Truth           Who Will Win: Kofi/R-Truth

World Heavyweight Championship MITB Ladder Match Featuring: Dolph Ziggler, Christian, Tensai, Santino Marella, Damien Sandow, Tyson Kidd, Sin Cara, and Cody Rhodes
I am definitely predicting this to be the match of the night and most likely the one most people will be into.  This is what the Money in the Bank ladder match is all about! There is a large amount of stars who have never been a world champion or even in the main event scene participating then there are a few stars such as Christian, Dolph Ziggler, and Cody Rhodes who have either held the world title (Christian did and Dolph Ziggler did it for… 30 minutes?) or have been in main event matches but are not regular main eventers.  Unlike the WWE Championship MITB, this one has a good mix of power wrestlers, high flyers, and good grapplers.  You also have your comedic relief with Santino Marella. I remember talking with a few friends on a wrestling forum I’m apart of saying that it would be cool to have Tyson Kidd apart of the match although I couldn’t see them doing it.  Fortunately he’s in it and I hope this might lead to better things for him in the future although I don’t see him winning the match by any means.

Who do I think will win? Well let’s do the process of elimination game: Damien Sandow has an opportunity for a good future, but I think it’s too early for him. Tyson Kidd may be on the verge of a push to bigger and better things, but again, too early.  Tensai lost to Tyson in a squash match and the WWE appears to be losing faith in him. Santino Marella is a comedy act. Sin Cara is a stunt man but not likely a regular main eventer.  This narrows it down to Christian, Dolph Ziggler, and Cody Rhodes.  There’s always a chance they could try to revitalize Christian back into the world title scene however he’s currently the Intercontinental Champion and Randy Orton is expected to return soon so I can’t see it being him.  Dolph Ziggler has been a main eventer a couple times through the past few years (and months) while Cody Rhodes sometimes makes appearances when it’s an event like the Elimination Chamber.  I’m going with Dolph Ziggler because everyone has been behind him (fans and backstage critics) for some time and I think this could be his ticket to finally stay on top of the game.  He’s a case where I think he doesn’t need the briefcase, but I can see the WWE just doing it anyway.   Either way, I can’t complain.

Who I Think Should Win: Either Dolph, Cody Rhodes, or Tyson Kidd (wishful thinking.)

Who Will Win: Dolph Ziggler

World Heavyweight Championship Match – Sheamus © vs. Alberto Del Rio:
Honestly I have not been looking forward to this match since it was hinted to happen at WWE Over The Limit.  In fact, I think it’s been a sign from some force in nature (since I’m a believer, I’ll say God) that this match has been delayed twice on PPV.  First time it was made into a Fatal Four-Way, the second time Alberto Del Rio was injured and couldn’t compete so Dolph Ziggler filled in for him.  Personally, I think they should have continued the feud between Sheamus and Dolph Ziggler and award DZ the title all while trying to elevate a new star to win the WHC MITB briefcase.  Anyway, that’s not what is happening so I’ll discuss the match.  I don’t necessarily hate Alberto Del Rio however I feel his character has been stale for sometime now.  The whole rich man coming to the ring with a car thing was fun for a while but that’s all he does. He is also limited in the ring. Sheamus is a good competitor but I just don’t see these two blending that well together.  Honestly, I couldn’t see Alberto winning the title that is unless he loses it in the same night! Sheamus has been a good champion but I think it’s time for a change. It’s a gutsy prediction but here it goes!  Sheamus loses this match because Ricardo Rodriguez does some kind of a distraction to cause him to be pinned by Alberto Del Rio. Alberto Del Rio celebrates his newly won World Heavyweight Championship in the ring but out comes Dolph Ziggler to cash-in his Money in the Bank and make quick work of Alberto Del Rio to become the new World Heavy Weight Championship.

Who Do I Want To Win: Sheamus or a Money in the Bank Winner

Who Will Win: Alberto Del Rio will win then Money in the Bank Winner (Dolph Ziggler) Will Cash-In

WWE Championship Match with Special Guest Referee AJ Lee – CM Punk © vs. Daniel Bryan:
Raw has been horrible the last three weeks to be brutally honest.  This storyline is one of the few shining moments but it is beginning to run its course as well.  I am really enjoying that the WWE is trying to put over a WWE Diva and what better Diva but AJ Lee. She’s pretty, she has nerdy attributes, and she has the definite girl next-door vibe that any guy would love. This while we have two great competitors in CM Punk and Daniel Bryan who tore up the house at WWE Over The Limit.  AJ has been playing a lot of games with both men leading up to this match as she has proposed marriage, kissed them, and one time put both CM Punk and Daniel Bryan through a table after teasing giving herself harm by acting like she was going to jump through the table.  There is no doubt this will be a good match however I do wonder how much horseplay will occur with AJ “the crazy hot chick” being involved in this match.  Anyway, I think something needs to develop in this match by AJ either permanently aligning with one of the two or having this feud come to an end.  I’m predicting CM Punk will come out as champion and that’s fine, however what I would prefer is for Daniel Bryan to get his first WWE championship. How so? By having AJ Lee screw over Punk and aligning her full-time with Daniel Bryan once again.  It has been proven even the best girls do align with the worst guys in real life; why not make it happen in the WWE? Anyway I want Daniel Bryan to win to change things up but predict CM Punk will continue his impressive title reign.

Who I Want To Win: Daniel Bryan

Who Will Win: CM Punk

WWE Championship Money in the Bank Ladder Match Featuring John Cena, The Big Show, Kane, and Chris Jericho:

My predicted main event of the night and the first time the Money in the Bank match actually main events the PPV.  In my personal opinion, this is just a big waste of the Money in the Bank match.  This is the kind of a match that should help build future stars or even help re-establish stars lacking from the Main Event.  The only one who I think could benefit from this is The Big Show but honestly, I don’t like him as a heel and haven’t for some time.  Kane has already won Money in the Bank, Chris Jericho has done so much in the WWE, and John Cena is the top star. Despite the Big Show not being as powerful a main eventer as he was at other points, he still has held multiple world championships.  Honestly, if we were going to have a former world champions Money in the Bank, it should be with people such as The Miz, Christian, Jack Swagger, and others who have either moved down the card, only held the title once, or has had a sham title reign (something like Dolph Ziggler’s 30 minute title reign.)  Anyway, I think John Cena is the clear-cut winner.  My prediction is he will win the Money in the Bank and announce he is cashing it in Boston for WWE Night of Champions on September 16th (mark the calendar, it’s my birthday folks!) He’ll be the first Money in the Bank winner since Rob Van Dam to not cheaply cash it in.  I just can’t see any reason for the Big Show or Kane to win the briefcase and I could only see one reason for Chris Jericho: to be the first winner ever to cash in the briefcase and lose!

Who I Want To Win: Wade Barrett to injure Big Show and come in! AKA Not happening.

Who Will Win: John Cena

That’s all for my WWE Money in the Bank Predictions! Please be sure to follow me on Facebook and Twitter for more updates! Also if you can make it out, come join others and myself this Sunday at Chicago City Limits in Schaumburg, IL to watch Money in the Bank!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

10 Great Americans

We are one day away from when America officially broke away from Great Britain and became our own country!  To celebrate this momentous occasion which has mostly become yet another excellent excuse to barbecue, drink, have the day off work, and watch some fireworks, I decided to tell you about 10 great fictional and non-fictional (somewhat) Americans!  Unlike my lists for Fox programming, I will not be ranking these American heroes in order.  Each of these heroes stand out in their own way while they may have contributed something great towards our country, they may show the merits of a true American, or they’re just entertaining enough to make the list! Let’s get it started!

Hulk Hogan

If you know me personally, do you think I would make such a list like this and NOT include him?!?!? As a child in the 1980s and the early 1990s, I would say the Pledge of Allegiance every day at school and every time my dad would take me to a sporting event I would stand up for the National Anthem.  When I started to watch wrestling around age 7, the first person to stand out of course was Hulk Hogan! While it was definitely the WWE’s (WWF at the time) marketing muscles at work, I was sold that this man stood for everything a true American should be! He was a big dude, he took out opponents just like Superman (who didn’t make my list), he would wave the American flag, and he told all of us kids to say their prayers and take their vitamins! Who wouldn’t want to be like this guy?  Let’s also not forget while the Gulf War was going on, he was also helping America by taking on former American turned Iraqi Sgt. Slaughter!! Also, he happens to enjoy a true American dessert with apple pie! Or as he says it: YAPPA PIE!!!

Guile, also known as Colonel William F. Guile is one of three American characters on my list which from a Japanese creator!  He’s a member of the U.S. Airforce and has an awesome hair-do! In each adaptation of Street Fighter he is portrayed as a true soldier and a loyal comrade as he is always seeking out his lost friend Charlie.  This is one soldier you do NOT want to get in a fistfight with! In the USA Network cartoon, Britain Secret Service agent Cammy happens to have a crush on Guile and he is completely oblivious of it! She once made an obvious hint by saying “Hey we finished the mission really well! We should celebrate over dinner.” Guile replies, “I agree! Let’s treat the whole gang to dinner tonight!” Guile, are you serious?!?! This is one time you have to let your patriotic attitude go and form your own version of the Allied Powers! Also, Guile's theme goes well with everything.

Mitchell Gorō Tanabe
Technically he is part American and part Japanese.  He is in fact from an anime series called “The Ping Pong Club” one of the funniest yet most perverted non-hentai (though it pushes close) series.  He is definitely the ultimate American stereotype though!  He’s portrayed as dumb for when he does “USA” chants he shouts out with pride “Oosah! Oosah!!”  Another trait of his is that he is muscular jock and in association to being a jock he has the worst B.O. ever!  Despite being the smelliest and dumbest member of the Inachu Junior High Ping Pong Club, next to Takeda, he is likely the most sane, kind, and honorable member of the group.   He is a friend to the end as he offers help to all, will take the blame for a friend, and will make corny jokes in attempt to cheer others up (the last one kind of sounds like myself.)  In my mind, he is a true Samaritan; with his support towards USA (or as he says “Oosah”) he has the heart of a true American!

John Bradshaw Layfield
John Layfield started out as a cowboy, was brainwashed into being a worshipper of The Undertaker, went onto becoming an ass kicking redneck bounty hunter, and finally became the true man that he is today, a self-made stock market investor who went onto a 280-day WWE title reign.  This man has accomplished so many things that a lot of other fellow Americans wish they could have done.  Let’s forget his pro wrestling career (one that consists of 24 championship reigns.)  He started off as a college football player.  He was signed to the LA Raiders in 1990 but was released before the season even started.  He has made many successful stock market investments and even wrote a book about it.  He is entrepreneur as he owns his owns Layfield Energy (a company that makes an energy drink), he invested money into independent wrestling federation OVW when it was having financial troubles, and he regularly makes appearances on Fox News’s “The Cost of Freedom.”  In real life he pretty much encompasses the stereotypical showboating millionaire.  Going back to his wrestling career, he was actually credited as the man who helped started the annual "WWE Tribute to the Troops" show which originally would have the WWE superstars fly out to put a show on for the soldiers of the United States overseas.  It is still going on but the show remains within the U.S.  I’ll admit I wasn’t a big fan of his at first from some backstage stories I read of him being a jerk and I didn’t think he was that great of a wrestler, but with all of his accomplishments and charity work, I have grown great respect towards him.

Martin Luther King Jr.
So we finally arrived at the first non-fictional person on this list. Yes, Martin Luther King Jr. is a phenomenal man! A phenomenal American!  If you went to school you know who he is but I’ll give you a quick summary.  MLK Jr. was a civil rights activist who in 1963 led the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.  It was a rally in Washington D.C. which encouraged fellow African Americans to rise up and speak out for equal rights in society for many things that were once restricted from minorities.  During this march, Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his widely famous “I Have a Dream “ speech that was a key peace in ending a lot of racial discrimination and helping many individuals who were once considered unworthy of opportunities that were restricted only to white Americans.  It’s quite possible that without MLK Jr. many celebrities, political figures, and even president Barack Obama wouldn’t be at where they are today.  I am forever thankful for his contributions as I have many great friends of different races, religions, and walks of life.

Benjamin Franklin
Think about this. What device are you using right now to read this article? Computer? PlayStation 3 or Wii? Cell phone? Tablet?  What controls these devices? Well besides the Internet… Electricity!!!  That’s right, the first discoverer of electricity very well happens to be an American! America F*** Yeah!

Anyway, in addition to being the inventor of electricity, Ben Franklin was a jack-of-all-trades.  He played music, he was awesome chess player, he helped form the Declaration of Independence, was the 6th president of Pennsylvania, and had many more accomplishments! Are you one of those saying he’s just a show off? Well if you are, you should at least be happy to see him when cash comes your way, he is on the one hundred dollar bill. I can’t complain.

Lt. Surge “The Lightning American”
What do you know? Here is another character of a Japanese franchise that happens to be an American.  Lt. Surge is a former military who has become a Pokémon gym leader.  Truth be told, I have only played the Pokémon Red and Blue games but I happened to enjoy this character.  His appearance comes off somewhat similar to that of Guile’s and uses the electric Pokémon of Pikachu, Raichu, and Voltorb to help him do his battles.  He is a strict man and respects trainers with a lot of heart.  He is a loyal soldier and a faithful trainer to his Pokémon. In one of the games, he is quoted as saying “"I tell you, kid, electric Pokémon saved me during the war!"  I wonder what war he is speaking of? Pokémon was first released in Japan in 1996 so I presume it was the Gulf War.  Can you picture Saddam Hussein trying to stab or shoot Lt. Surge and Pikachu just electrocutes him or perhaps he becomes surrounded by several Iraqis and he throws his Voltorb at them and it explodes for him to escape to safety? Sounds like one hell of a war.

Captain America

Steve Rogers, a man once not seen as suited to join the United States Army underwent the Super Soldier project that made him into the hero known as Captain America.  Marvel’s creation of Captain America was a very popular comic book hero during World War 2 and remains a popular hero to this day.  Just like Superman and Batman, comic book writers and artists are able to adapt the character of Captain America into each decade (usually by having him frozen in ice and being defrosted.) What I find very unique about Captain America in opposition to other superheroes is that he actually carries a shield with him both as a defensive and offensive weapon.  He uses it as a disc to throw at enemies and has many different versions of the shield.  Whether he is fighting Nazis, the Red Skull, or fighting alongside his fellow Avengers teammates, he is always wearing the red, white, and blue.  You really can’t get any more American than him.

Amelia Earhart
I don’t know about you guys, but I felt that this list needed at least one female American represented.  Why not use a real one?  I appreciate Amelia Earhart for being a strong willed woman who decided to fulfill her dreams.  At age 10 she received an airplane ride from a pilot and decided it was her goal to fly airplanes.  She was the first female aviator (known at the time as an aviatrix) to fly across the Atlantic Ocean by herself.  She has made many other conquests but was reported missing at age 39 in 1937 when flying over the Pacific Ocean towards Howland Island.  In my personal opinion, for someone to grow up wanting to do something as early as his or her pre-teens and actually accomplish such a goal, that is living a successful life.  This woman is an inspiration for any American.

Rocky Balboa
The final American on our list is an American character played by Sylvester Stallone.  The Rocky series has grown to be one of my favorite movie series as it is one of the biggest underdog stories.  Rocky Balboa was a debt collector for a loan shark who would train at night to pursue his dreams as a boxer.  Rocky didn’t graduate high school and he only made enough to just get by.  He trained hard in his boxing career to get noticed by the mainstream.  He would have his first big match against World Heavyweight Boxing Champion Apollo Creed.  Throughout the movie series, you will see Rocky grow from rags to riches.  The man may not be the brightest around, but he has a very good spirit and a lot of heart!  I think that the character of Rocky Balboa really symbolizes that even if you aren’t the smartest or the richest, if you set your mind to it, you can make it in America!  “Yo Adrian! I did it!” Also, you have to love the training scenes in the Rocky movies. Personally, it makes me want to step it up more in my routine. Here is the training sequence from Rocky 3, my favorite Rocky of the series.

That is it for my Ten Great Americans article. I really hope you enjoyed it whether you found some of these guys inspirational or just got a good laugh out of them.  If you want to share your thoughts please do.  Fan me on Facebook, follow me on Twitter, and Be Sure to Subscribe to me on YouTube if you enjoyed this piece or even if you just wish to comment. Have a Happy 4th of July and Remember, wherever you’re from, be proud of it!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

STVO’s E3 2012 Anticipation Pre-Show

E3 is this week and as a gamer I am pumped.  This year, Nintendo will be revealing more details (except for price point apparently) about their newest console the Wii-U as well as new titles for the 3DS, Microsoft will be showing off Halo 4 and Gears of War: Judgment, and Sony will be showing off their new thriller “The Last of Us”, PlayStation All-Star Battle Royale (their answer to Smash Bros.) among many other new PS3 and PS Vita titles.  I am going to be watching all week for E3 and I can’t wait to hear what new titles (and possibly new consoles?) will be revealed.  In this piece, I am going to discuss my top anticipated known titles from the official list (currently from IGN and I’ll do a little speculation.  I’m going to open up with my top 5 most anticipated titles.

Top 5 Most Anticipated Titles Officially Announced (According to the IGN and E3  Official Website Lists)

5. Double Dragon Neon (PS3, 360)
4. Guacamelee (PS3)
3. PlayStation All-Star Battle Royale (PS3)
2. Pikmin 3 (Wii-U)
1. Resident Evil 6 (360, PS3)

Okay, while I’m a gamer and still love picking up games, I must admit, I am getting old. 20+ years of gaming, multiple consoles, I still play, however I have a lot more interests now than I did as a kid (comics/manga, cosplay, conventions, social networking, movies/Netflix, running, etc.)  Unfortunately with the expansion of my hobbies and working full-time, I don’t devote as many hours towards towards games as I used to. Hell, I still haven’t beat Zelda: Skyward Sword (that’s totally unheard of from me.)  Anyway, there’s a lot of great games I’d like to play here, many that are fairly easy to pick up but many that I just have a hard time turning down. Resident Evil 6 is another sequel in one of my favorite series of all-time!  I love the Resident Evil story (no matter what crazy twist it takes.)  The fact you can play as Leon Sinclair or Chris Redfield is awesome and I like the idea of Sherry Birkin from Resident Evil 2 becoming an adult in the game. I can’t wait for more details and I really can’t wait to play it!

Pikmin 3 on the Wii-U should be amazing! I love the first two Pikmin titles from the Nintendo Gamecube as it’s a simple concept but with very challenging yet strategic gameplay.  Pikmin in 2001 looked amazing for it’s time.  Upgrading it to HD will make it look even more realistic in terms of real life environments. Plus I can’t wait to grow an army of Pikmin and have them attack! PlayStation All-Star Battle Royale (I’ll call it PABR for now) looks like they definitely “borrowed” a lot from Nintendo’s incredibly successful Super Smash Bros. series, but it looks like it will be fun it’s own merit.  As long as it plays like/as close to/better than Super Smash Bros, it should be a fun title! I can’t wait to see more characters announced for this title.

The last two titles look like they are easy to pick up games. For those that don’t know what Guacamelee is, it’s a PSN game featuring a lucha libre Mexican wrestler brawling in a Metroid/Shadow Complex like level setting.  From the video I have seen, its animation is very similar to a cartoon like Samurai Jack. It looks like a lot of fun.  Double Dragon Neon is from Majesco and Wayforward (the makers of Contra 4 for Nintendo DS) and is an enhanced version of the original arcade/NES classic.   It is said to be an all-new title in the series but will retain the classic game play with updated graphics.  At the bottom, I have an honorable mentions list. Many are sequels to series I love while Far Cry 3 (I have never played the originals) just looks amazing from the trailer alone.  The Last of Us is a zombie title from Sony/Naughty Dog (makers of Uncharted) so I expect a very awesome game, however I will be picking up Resident Evil 6 first before I play that title.

Honorable Mentions: Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, Gears of War: Judgment, Mario Wii-U, The Last of Us, Sly Cooper: Theives in Time, Far Cry 3, New Tomb Raider, WWE 13, and New Super Mario 2 (3DS).

My Prediction and Speculations for E3:
·      Nintendo will show off several titles for Wii-U and 3DS.  I believe a new Zelda title will be revealed for the 3DS however I’m predicting Nintendo won’t yet have an official demo or trailer for a new Wii-U Zelda title as Skyward Sword just came out last year.  I do believe they will have a trailer and new details for the new Super Smash Bros. and I believe they will continue the idea of having it a cross compatible title between the Wii-U and 3DS similar to that of the PlayStation 3 and PSVita.
·      While lots of first party titles will be revealed for the Wii-U, I’m predicting on their main first party launch titles will be at least one new Wii Sports title, possibly another Wii-centric title (either Wii Fit, Wii Play, or an all-new Wii series title), Pikmin 3, and the Mario title that is being talked about being revealed. I believe they will learn from the mediocre 3DS launch that they must have some higher profile titles at launch to sell the system and they will believe that a new Mario title will do it.  While it’s possible, I don’t believe the new Wii-U Mario title will be cross compatible with New Super Mario Bros. 2 for 3DS.
·      I’m thinking Sony or Microsoft will show concepts or at least tease the idea of a new console launching in 2013.  I just can’t see either company waiting too long for Nintendo to launch a new console and they do nothing about it.
·      Microsoft will attempt to regain their hardcore gaming fans this year at E3 by showing off more titles (including the already announced Halo 4 and Gears of War: Judgment) appealing to the core gamer.  They will continue to show off the Xbox Kinect, but the last two years they put a lot more focus on Kinect than the core Xbox gaming. Perhaps some of their first party titles such as Halo and Gears will include modes utilizing the Kinect.

That is all for my E3 speculation and pre-show thoughts! This week I hope to Tweet and possibly Facebook some E3 info as I find out! With that said, follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and subscribe to my YouTube channel as I hope to do some new videos after the week is over (might do one this week depending on how things are going.)  Also, I am currently holding a contest on the Facebook STVO Universe page where the 160th fan on Facebook will receive a free drawing and a shout out by me to you on my next YouTube video!  The count is currently at 148, so tell your friends to spread the word please?!? :D

Also a special shout-out to my cousin SlashAsterisk on Facebook as well our friend’s event tomorrow in LA. Check out the SMOG Facebook page here for more details!  Until then, have an awesome week and enjoy the E3 Coverage!