With the Diva Search competition out of the way, you're now promoting 'National Lampoon Strip Poker'. For our readers who are unaware, tell us what National Lampoon's is all about?
-Well, I was so excited to be working with them – National Lampoon is an international comedy institution – and to think that I’m the next chapter in a book that includes classic films like Animal House, the Vacation movies, and Van Wilder is so incredibly humbling! How wild is that? Plus, when I found out that the filming for National Lampoon’s Strip Poker was taking place at the infamous Hedonism II nudist resort in Jamaica… well, a girl with a wild streak as big as mine isn’t going to turn down THAT opportunity! I also had my birthday in Jamaica during the filming, and getting to celebrate my birthday in tropical paradise was an incredible treat!
The filming was actually hard work; my time at Hedonism II was much more than having cold drinks on the beach, partying naked, and getting rowdy (although I did all those things!). Because of the intense Jamaican heat, we had to begin filming at the crack of dawn, and then take multiple breaks to mop-up our sweat, reapply makeup, and get out of the sun. Still, it was an amazing experience, and I couldn’t be prouder of how it turned out. If any of your readers would like to check out my trailer, please visit http://www.nationallampoon.com/strip_poker/. Warning: My trailer does show naked shots of me, so be advised – it’s not work-safe! I don’t want any of you guys to get fired from your jobs because of me!
How did you get involved with the website?
After my WWE experience, National Lampoon approached me about writing a tell-all story about my recent adventure in sports entertainment. And you know, for a girl from Canada – who lived in the Philippines until age five, no less – to have an opportunity to represent prestigious entertainment icons like the WWE and National Lampoon is simply mind-boggling! It really shows that anything can happen… with lots of hard work, a little bit of luck, and the right attitude!
Really, I can’t reiterate how pleased I am to tell people that I had the privilege and honor of representing both the WWE and National Lampoon. Both companies treated me with class, warmth, and kindness – and for that I am so grateful!
Turning our attention to wrestling, what led to you applying to be part of the Diva Search competition?
A friend of mine forwarded me information about the 2005 Diva Search competition, knowing what a huge, hardcore wrestling fan I am. And when I think of a WWE diva, I imagine a strong, sexy, self-reliant woman who is respected for her hard work without acting all “high maintenance” or like a prima donna – and that’s me!
Plus, I’m a Canadian citizen, and so many of my fellow Canadians have done great things in the wrestling business. Trish Stratus in particular is someone I greatly admire, because not only is she from my adopted hometown of Toronto, but she also got her start as a fitness model – as did I. And it’s funny; I’ve never actually met Trish, but we appeared together in the same fitness calendar several years back called BABES.
We've heard of women who are involved in the wrestling business being overlooked during the final castings for the likes of yourself. Why do you think WWE are overlooking girls who can already wrestle in favour of individuals who are totally new to the business?
Actually, I had already taken pro wrestling classes back in Canada; the person who trained Trish also trained me. Pro wrestling was something I’ve loved for such a long time; it’s not a case of me learning about an opportunity with the WWE, and then trying to pretend that I’m a fan.
My childhood was pretty tough. I left the Philippines as a very young girl and moved to Canada, where I faced a culture clash and a language barrier. My mother died and my father never got along well with me… but among my best, most cherished childhood memories was watching the stars of pro wrestling with my family. That’s why it always pissed me off when elitist snobs condemn wrestling – and thus the fans of wrestling. What the WWE offers is a unique brand of sports entertainment featuring world class athletes, compelling storylines, riveting drama, and passionate crowd interaction. What’s not to like?! And if wrestling has given people like me so much pleasure over the years… why berate it, just because it doesn’t feature the kind of understated dialogue you might find in a Woody Allen movie?
One thing I never liked was when these quasi-celebrities or air-headed models – who you know didn’t care about wrestling whatsoever – would do a brief partnership with the WWE or WCW, solely to use it as a stepping stone. The wrestlers who bust their ass entertaining the audience deserve far better than that.
And by the way, you should know that some of the other Diva Search contestants feel the same way I do. Ashley had just started taking wrestling classes during the auditions, and Elisabeth is a very athletic girl who always wanted to wrestle. Wouldn’t it be great if the three of us met in the ring down the road? That would be like a dream come true!
OK, so you've made it to RAW for the first time. How did the day go prior to the show going live on TV?
The day I went “live” in Anaheim, I was so nervous! I was backstage, pacing back and forth, listening to my iPod (I had it programmed with kick ass music – the kind of stuff that would inspire a girl who’s mere hours away from stepping into a WWE ring!). And you know, right until the Diva Search segment aired, I wasn’t sure if I should answer Jonathon Coachman’s questions like a Miss America contestant – all bubbly and sweet – or if I should be myself, which is assertive and forthcoming. The trouble is, an assertive girl can often come across like a bitch… which wouldn’t be too helpful when soliciting support for online voting! I called up a close friend of mine to hear her thoughts… and she reminded me that I beat out 8,000 other Diva Search contestants by being myself. So I tried to be authentic in front of the cameras. What you saw is who I am.
By the way, the very first wrestler I ran into when I entered the arena was the greatest of all time – the Nature Boy Ric Flair! Here is a legend with uncanny inner strength and an amazing ability to turn boos into cheers (plus, I’ve always loved his outfits!).
You made reference via the National Lampoon website to a poem you wrote, referring to the terrible Katie Vick storyline. How about a world exclusive on that poem?
I’d love to! My plan was to be all cutthroat with my competition – but to do so in a funny, comedic way (not taking myself too seriously). We all had to exhibit a talent, and mine was going to be erotic poetry! I wanted to look all sexy & purr into the microphone: “I’m the most orally gifted of all the divas – and to prove it, here’s a poem I wrote just for you!” And here it is:
I’m sexy Alexis on this wrestling card,
And Jersey boys make my headlights so hard!
I’ll make your body contort and quiver,
I have Trish’s breasts – and Stone Cold’s liver!
I’m here to excite you – to titillate and tease,
But those other girls are swimming in disease!
Those wannabe divas act so cute and cuddly,
But without their implants, they look like Spike Dudley!
Inflated with saline, yet lifeless and sick,
They’re deader in the sack than the corpse of Katie Vick.
I’ll strip my opponents ‘til they’re naked and bare,
They’re fading faster than Shawn Michaels’ hair.
They’ll be cut from Raw because they’re third tier,
Cut short like Brock Lesnar’s football career.
So think of Alexis, so seductive and spread,
Flair’s the dirtiest player in the game – and I’m the dirtiest in the bed! WOOOO!
I thought the poem would play well with the audience, and was very disappointed that I didn’t have an opportunity to give it a shot. Maybe next time!
You (along with tons of wrestling fans) were somewhat critical of the writing team on RAW. Based on what you know of the product, what are your thoughts on the show and it's storylines?
Yeah, that small part of my article seems to have really gained traction among the “smart” wrestling fans out there. I guess lots of armchair wrestling GMs feel that they could do a better job, if they were given a chance. But really, the writers have an awfully tough task, when you stop and think about it. You consider about all the moving parts to writing a show: Live TV, no off-season, no retakes, continuous tapings, superstar egos, network regulations, sponsor demands, last minute vetoes, no reruns, managerial oversight & decrees, injuries and real-life disputes altering story angles, etc. Like lots of guys, I used to watch wrestling on TV and think to myself, “Hey, I can do that better than they can!” The truth, though, is that it’s a much more daunting task than you might think. The closer you are to the process, the more challenging it becomes.
And yes, the writers we worked with were all new – and I probably knew more about certain components of past WWE storyline than they did. That surprised me. But you should not interpret this as me being an egotistical bitch who didn’t appreciate all their hard work. They really are bright, capable writers who are trying to use their non-wrestling experience to give the WWE the feel of an exciting, anything-goes entertainment vehicle. And just because their life-long ambition wasn’t to be a pro wrestling writer, it does not mean that they aren’t talented, professional people who are an asset to the WWE and truly love being there.
Let me give an example: Trish was in medical school at York University before she joined the WWE. At that stage of her life, I’m sure she cared more about passing her finals than knowing the WWE story arc of several years ago – but with dedication and a vastly underrated athleticism, she was eventually able to perform her craft at an unbelievably high level. I think it’s fair to say that she’s the greatest female wrestling performer in the history of the industry. If Trish could eventually do it, why not these writers?
"Ribbing" is pretty common within wrestling. Were you or any of the Divas subject to a practical joke while you were there?
They are a professional company and they treated us with a lot of respect. No socializing with the WWE superstars was allowed (although backstage interactions are impossible to stop), and the WWE really went out of their way to make sure we were comfortable. No one was allowed to belittle each other – on or off the squared circle – and there was a dress code in effect. I know it conflicts with his in-ring persona, but I truly felt that Vince has a lot of respect for his female talent. Yes, like many of you I’ve heard the horror stories from past divas like Sable… but what she claimed in that abandoned lawsuit just didn’t correlate whatsoever with my experiences with the company. Everyone was great to me, and I can’t say that enough.
Was there any negativity or words said with regards to the TV time you were taking away from any of the wrestlers?
-Honestly, the only real negative things I heard was from the hardcore Internet wrestling fans, which is certainly understandable; those guys (and among those “guys” are a surprisingly large number of women) love watching a match with an ultra-high work-rate, a clean finish, and young talent developing into main event threats. If that’s why you watch pro wrestling, I just can’t give you what you’re looking for during the Diva Search, no matter how hard I try – and I know that. But even though the hardcore Internet wrestling fans – which I consider myself one of, incidentally – has certain likes & dislikes, not all fans of WWE programming feel the same way. On the Monday Night Raw just prior to the Bikini Boot Camp edition, the Diva Search segment tied the in-ring return of Hulk Hogan for top overall ratings.
Here’s how I looked at it: Vince McMahon knows far more about pro wrestling than I ever will, and he values the contributions that female performers can provide to his overall product. And historically, certain female performers – such as Miss Elizabeth with the Mega Powers, Precious with the Garvins and Ric Flair, Stephanie and HHH, Lita and Edge/ Hardy/ Kane, and just about anything with Trish – only increases our enjoyment of the action by furthering the storyline. So I just wanted to do my best and fit in.
A little word association, if you'd like to answer and give your thoughts on:
He is the MAC daddy the P.I.M.P. – and I mean that in a good, legal way! He's like the Hefner of wrestling! This guy is a genius to have transformed this industry and turned the WWE into such a huge corporation. He’s the big guy – the big boss.
Smooth and suave, John Cena is a natural born ladies man. He really is a Gentleman. And whoever said that the Diva Search contestants and WWE superstars shouldn’t socialize obviously never told John!
Very professional; Hunter is the strong, silent type. He really knows a lot about this business, and helped out the other WWE talent backstage.
He’s larger than life, a role model, a personal hero – and the greatest ICON in the history of wrestling. I’m a huge fan of his.
If Ric Flair the MAN, then Stephanie is the WOMAN. She’s very entrepreneurial-minded and BUSINESS savvy. Her talent and leadership separates her from the rest of the pack.
Eric is a “go get ‘em tiger!” kind of guy who is constantly encouraging us all backstage. He’s dashing, stylish, and very aristocrat. He reminds me of fine wine – he gets better with age!
Your fellow Diva contestants?
Elizabeth is sporty chic. Kristal is a loveable goofball! Cameron is a girly-girl – very Heidi Klum-ish. Ashley is a tomboy. Leyla is a sex kitten. Simona is sort of like Ivana Trump. Summer is a Barbie doll.
Finally, do you see a future at all for yourself in wrestling, ir or out of WWE?
If they'll have me, I’d love to return! It's all up to the big guy (and I don’t mean the Big Show, but a certain flamboyant billionaire named Vince!). The WWE isn’t sharing any of its future plans or long-term storylines with me, so I really don’t know if I’m coming back or not. Hey, I’d like nothing more than to rain on the winning diva’s parade and clothesline her out of the ring! (laughs). Maybe Trish Stratus and I could create a little havoc and hell together, since we are both Canadian. Maybe a storyline between me and the Heart Throbs – where I break them apart! Nobody believes me, but Romeo is so hot when you see him in person!. And in my ultimate dream, I could always be Hulk Hogan's manager – or even better, a part of Ric Flair's entourage! WOOO!
Vince always says that anything can happen in the WWE! Let’s find out!