“Heart jim, Heart! The whole world’s crying out for a little bit of heart!”
— DETECTIVE STORY
RECOMMENDED DVD/BLU-RAY PURCHASE OF THE DAY
DETECTIVE STORY (1951) – See my full review of DETECTIVE STORY in the last installment of Thursday’s Thoughts.
Okay so what is obsessing me this Thursday?
I am catching up with the 4th season of the blade making/competition show, FORGED IN FIRE courtesy of streaming service HULU. Other shows being POWER, AMERICAN PICKERS,
I am finishing up the 6th and last season of the surprisingly good TEEN WOLF series courtesy of AMAZON PRIME. The 6th season is a bit of a misstep, especially the last half, it feels like the writing was definitely on just ‘crank something out mode’, but a weak 1st season and a weak last season aside, it is still must own tv for seasons 2 thru 5.
Definitely along with FARGO season 2, LUKE CAGE season 1, and LEGION season 1, Blu-ray worthy.
Other show on my EXTENSIVE Amazon Prime watch list is THE AMERICANS, BAD LANDS, JACK RYAN, MISSION IMPOSSIBLE to name a few.
What I’m Listening to:
I’m now on the fourth audio book of the 8 book men’s adventure series from the 1970s BLACK SAMURAI. Titled PEARL this 4th entry of the series the stakes are a little more street level, but no less dire. Robert Sands, the Black Samurai, instead of averting the revenge massacre of an American town, or stopping the utilization of mass murders and global conflict to increase stock prices, or a terrorist nuclear detonation in America; must this time out save one young girl from prostitution.
Unfortunately his opposition is no less deranged, and the collateral damage… runs just as red. About 11 chapters in and simply stupendous writing. Kevin Kennerly has quickly risen into my rankings of best audio book performers.
If you have not picked up all eight MP3 Audio books on Amazon Prime, now is the time to do so. Previous experience informs that they will not be in stock long.
I pop the cd in on my way to and from work, yes I insist on having a CD player in my car 🙂 and the audio book is SO FRIGGING GOOD! Each book is a writer, the late, great Marc Olden just at the height of his gifts. As a fan of all these men’s adventure books of the 70s, from BOND, to NICK CARTER, to THD EXECUTIONER MAC BOLAN to REMO WILLIAMS THE DESTROYER, Olden’s BLACK SAMURAI is the best of the best.
What I’m watching:
I am watching a lot of great Youtube channels. I watch, via Roku, Youtube on my big screen. The Youtube shows are overall more interesting than regular TV.
This week I have in addition to my plethora of comic book shows, gotten on a boxing kick.
The heavy-weight division, after a period of stagnation in the Klitschko years, now has some really exciting champions and contenders and matchups. First and foremost you have two true undisputed champions, Deontay Wilder and Anthony Joshua.
Anthony Joshua holds the WBO,IBF, AND WBA belts. Deontay Wilder holds the WBC belt.
Both of these fighters are in the mold of Super Heavyweights, the first such Super-Heavyweight being George Forman back in the 1960s. Being well over 6 feet, and over 200 Lbs, Foreman dwarfed his heavy weight competition of the day. And only the brilliance that was Ali was able to figure out how to beat, the unbeatable George Foreman, a man who had not only height and weight but true boxing skill.
Foreman’s return to the heavy weight circuit in the 90s, in a boxing scene absent of an Ali to oppose him, saw the elder Stateman shake the world becoming decades after his expected prime, the undisputed heavy weight champion of the world… and set the mold for the champion of the future.
Someone 6’4 or above and 250lbs. That today has become the average size of the heavyweight division. Which effectively redefines the heavyweight division as a super-heavy weight division.
And redefines what has historically been the heavy weight division, as the cruiser weight division.
The domino effect of this skewing of traditional division definitions, is people who would perform far better and more competitively in the cruiserweight division, are bulking up to pursue the historic prestige of the heavy weight division. Not realizing the heavy weight champions of the 20th century would now all be cruiserweights, not heavyweights.
This new boom of super heavyweights in the heavyweight division, is part of the stagnation of the last few years. Talented fighters are putting on weight beyond their frame to compete with these new super heavyweights, to their detriment. And the detriment of the sport.
A lot of these boxers would be stunning at cruiser weight, but ‘cruiserweight champion of the world’ does not garner the respect or interest, as having the title heavyweight champion. That is why no one even knows who the cruiser weight champions are. I looked them up for this article, never heard of any of them.
There are two ways to solve this,
1/ either create a superheavy weight division, say avyone above 225lbs. And that keeps traditional heavyweights from being outmatched by someone substantially heavier than them, with a greater reach. This is perhaps the most satisfying way, in that it allows for another Jack Johnson, or Joe Louis, or Rocky Marciano to in the future become the heavy weight champion, to keep it not too far out of the scope of a regular guy. And the supersized anomalies such as Klitschko, Fury, Joshua etc, get moved to the Super Heavy Weight division. or..
2/The 2nd way would be to redefine the cruiserweight division as the most prestigious weight division. But that would likely be a hard sell as the history of what is considered the best in boxing is that heavyweight division.
So the 1st option is the one that offers the most competitive heavyweight division.
Currently in 2018 we are very blessed to have a few talented 6’6 heavy weights to compete against each other rather than just outjabbing what amounts to overweight cruserweights, but that beneficial status quo won’t last. And then we will be back to a stagnant heavyweright scene.
For the good of boxing we need to create a super heavy weight division, and that will allow exciting matches at the heavy weight division to flourish.
And right now there is one ‘fight of the decade’ match at the ‘Heavyweight’ division, as well as a couple competitive matches.
That fight of the decade is between of course Deontay Wilder and Anthony Joshua. Both 6’6 , both knockout artists, both undefeated, and both very exciting fighters. Though clearly Deontay Wilder is the more exciting fighter both inside and outside the ring. Quite clearly Joshua’s people are running scared, knowing in a fight with Deontay, the odds favor that Wilder is either going to knock out Joshua and unify the division: and even a grueling battle that ekes out a decision in favor of their champion, will just excelerate what Deontay likes to call ‘a fighter’s expiration date’.
Now I say the odds are good Wilder knocks out Joshua, cause that is where my gut points. But quite frankly they are both proven champions, it can go either way. That is why it would be a great fight, they are both deserving of respect. The only one who seemingly doesn’t know this is Tyson Fury. Tyson Fury also is deserving of respect, but he has been out of the game for three years, and arguably the Klitschko he beat was a shadow of the one that Joshua fought.
So having not had a fight in 3 years he is trying to talk himself into a title (spelt ‘money’) match. That is not how it is done. You have to prove you still have it and are deserving of fighting a champion before anyone is interested in seeing you fight a champion. Both Joshua and Wilder would earn nothing by beating him. He has to earn that contender status again, just like any other fighter. So it is good that he is fighting again, with a 2nd fight slated for August. Though as long as there is a Joshua/Wilder fight on the possible horizon, he might as well consign himself to waiting in line.
Well, This is part of the problem with this misnamed super-heavy weight division. Outside of fighting over weight cruiser weights there aren’t really a lot of competitive fights for 6’6 250 lb guys who can really box. So Joshua’s people have their hands full trying to duck The couple serious super-heavy weight fighters out there. I think Joshua beats handily a crafty Tyson Fury, but he risks ending his knockout streak, and worse… an injury, which is always a possibility with any fight, and losing out on the real money fight… Deontay Wilder.
The only fight anyone wants to see in the heavyweight/superheavy weight division is Deontay Wilder and Anthony Joshua. So Joshua people, stop cherry picking fighters and make it happen.
Ok I did not think I would do that much talking about Boxing. What can I say, after decades of stagnation, there are some really competitive fights out there.
And Boxing, for reasons I stated elsewhere, I like as a spectator sport, far more than MMA.
That is it for this installment.
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