Austin welcomes Brutus ‘The Barber’ Beefcake to the show.
Beefcake informs that he was working for about 7 years when he got the call to work for WWE. Vince McMahon Jr. had taken over the company from his father by this point, and he quickly established a good working relationship with him. He was very intimidated by all the McMahons at first, but after getting to know them he had a great relationship with all of them.
Austin asks Beefcake about the origins of his name and gimmick. Beefcake informs that his initial name was supposed to be ‘Baron Beefcake’, and his ring gear would include a top hat and tuxedo. As he, McMahon and other WWE officials were brainstorming ideas someone suggested ‘Brutus’ and that’s the name that stuck.
He admits that he wasn’t fond of the ‘Brutus Beefcake’ name. Working for WWE was his big break and he feared that with a name like that, people would laugh at him and wouldn’t take him seriously. McMahon didn’t like the name either, but they proceeded with that nonetheless.
Soon ‘The Barber’ idea came about, and that’s what really got people’s attention in his opinion. With a crazy name like “Brutus ‘The Barber’ Beefcake” he knew that he had to act crazy in order to live the gimmick. He thinks that McMahon fell in love with the character when he started to see the fans’ reaction to him.
Austin says that Beefcake’s work always looked great and crisp, but his fire is what really made him stand out on a roster full of talent. Beefcake thanks Austin for that compliment and says that he always tried to stand out by showing his passion for the business and giving 100% to the audience every single night.
Austin talks about the risks McMahon took in 1985 by leveraging his entire business and life savings in order to put off the original WrestleMania event. He adds that this PPV had to deliver because if it didn’t, McMahon and WWE would have been financially ruined. He asks Beefcake about the feeling backstage leading up to that event.
Beefcake says that the feeling in the locker room during that time was to go out and put off a great show. The locker room was a very comfortable place back them and nobody was afraid of losing their jobs. It was a very team-oriented environment during that time and everyone was determined to go out and make WrestleMania a success.
Beefcake says he had no issues with Mr. T. at all, and he actually respected him as a performer and enjoyed being around him. He admits that some guys didn’t love Mr. T. but he also points out that Mr. T was a lot like a professional wrestler in the sense that he was living his gimmick each day and just trying to make a living.
Austin asks Beefcake about the classic match between Roddy Piper and Adrian Adonis at WrestleMania 3. Beefcake says the crowd were absolutely on fire that night, and it was a last minute decision for him to shave Adonis’ hair after the match ended. This ultimately led to him developing the ‘Barber’ gimmick.
Initially Piper was supposed to shave Adnois’ head but Piper urged Beefcake to do the honours when he got to the ring. He says that the clippers were terrible and he started to panic, but finally he got them to work and when he started to throw Adonis’ hair into the air the fans went crazy.
After seeing this, McMahon and WWE officials decided to give Beefcake the ‘Barber’ gimmick and he admits that he wasn’t happy about that at the time. He was having success as ‘Brutus Beefcake’, and he didn’t want to start a new gimmick, especially as a barber. He admits to feeling lost for a while after starting that gimmick but eventually things started to come around.
Beefcake informs that he started making his entrance to the ring with a small pair of scissors but that wasn’t giving him the visual that he wanted. He also thought that with 100,000 people in a stadium, a lot of people in the cheap seats wouldn’t even be able to see the scissors. He switched to the large garden shears and that was exactly the stunning visual he was looking for.
Beefcake talks about the difficulty he faced after having his face terribly damaged in a parasailing accident. He was just getting out of a bad marriage and had just received divorce papers. The stress of this accident was coupled with the stress of losing a lot of money in the divorce, and then doctors told him that he’d never wrestle again and he’s lucky to be alive.
He wasn’t able to lie down for 8 months and slept upright in a chair. He also couldn’t eat due to having his mouth wired shut for 3 months, and this resulted in him losing 55 lbs. He was extremely lucky to finally be able to step in the ring months after the accident occurred, but McMahon soon developed the Barbershop segment for Beefcake, to take the pressure off of him having to performer in the ring.
Beefcake informs that he has a new book out entitled “Struttin’ and Cuttin’: The Life of Brutus Beefcake”, and he urges everyone to check it out.
That sums up this week’s episode of The Steve Austin Show. You can listen to the show yourself anytime here, and I’ll catch ya next week for another recap!