Comedian Taylor Williamson is at the intersection of wrestling and comedy as he's performed at various wrestling comedy shows and also written jokes for wrestling roasts. Williamson talked about his earliest memories of wrestling when he spoke to Wrestling Inc. on our WINCLY podcast.
"[His earliest wrestling memory was] My parents using TV as a babysitter and I was like why was this guy with a snake feeding this lovely man to his snake? My earliest memory is Macho Man getting bit by Jake Roberts' snake. Isn't that beautiful," Williamson asked rhetorically.
"I've always been a wrestling fan and my favorite thing that's happened from being a comedian is the crossover – a lot of wrestlers want to be comedians and a lot of comedians want to be wrestlers. What also got me into wrestling was those Andy Kaufman documentaries…I didn't even like comedy as a kid but he was the first comedian I really paid attention to during the Jerry Lawler thing."
Colt Cabana was one of the first to blend comedians and pro wrestlers and Williamson discussed his relationship with him.
"Colt Cabana was my first wrestling friend; I love that dude. He's a comedy wrestler but he's also a great wrestler who does comedy in the ring," said Williamson. "I met him on MySpace like 12 years ago because I was Comedian of the Week or something. It's special to see how he's changed the podcast game and comedy game. I look at him when I think of merch and I look to pattern myself after some of the stuff he's done.
Cabana's perspective on comedy in wrestling is much different than several other wrestlers'.
"Some of the old-school guys are not into comedians coming into their world. I get it but they are real, serious wrestlers," stated Williamson.
Williamson was part of the roast of Bruce Prichard and he talked about writing jokes for some of the wrestlers featured.
"I got there early and was walking the halls when I saw Bruce and helped him right some jokes. Then X-Pac came in there and he didn't have anything written. It ended up with me hanging out with X-Pac, Bruce, Gerald Brisco, Pat Patterson and Jeff Jarrett. I was helping all of these people write jokes because no one had anything prepared yet," stated Williamson.
"It was such a joy hanging out with these guys because they were not like, 'Who are you?' They almost respected us too much honestly. They didn't know who we were but they treated us like we were equals. That was nice but too much honestly.
"But at Starrcast II with some of the panels with some of these guys, they are kinda disgusted by comedians. It was one of the old-school guys who didn't like comedians coming into his world and making fun of him. But I get it."
Williamson has done many pro wrestling/comedy shows and he talked about the reactions he's received.
"Wrestling crowds are interesting and I've done a few wrestling comedy shows. I've opened for a couple of Bruce Prichard and Conrad [Thompson] shows," said Williamson. "The LA Bruce Prichard-Conrad podcast, the crowd booed me when I walked on stage. That's kinda what I expected so I knew I had to yell at them and turn heel so they would respect me.
"Wrestling crowds are into it and kinda rowdier – polite rowdy. The Ron Funches Show at Starrcast I thought was just going to be stand-up…but I went up there and did my roast jokes and some wrestling stand-up bits. The crowd was very receptive and fun and if things didn't work they were cool."
The closest think to comedy wrestling in WWE these days is the 24/7 Championship storyline. Williamson loves the concept because it's giving guys TV time that normally wouldn't get much of an opportunity.
"I think it's great even though people were hating on it when it first came out. It sounds like I'm giving PC answers but I love seeing people get opportunities. Like R-Truth isn't on TV a lot and Drake Maverick hasn't been getting to wrestle, but these guys on YouTube are getting more views than anything else," stated Williamson.
"Wrestling is sports entertainment and they are making sketches that aren't too long and are interesting and goofy and weird. I like it and it's different and a joke but it's funny. So, is it bad if it's a joke in wrestling if it's actually entertaining?"
He then talked about the DDT title in Japan that is like the 24/7 title but they're doing it differently. Williamson says perhaps the best thing in WWE today is the Drake - Truth stuff.
"I wonder if the people at top care the least about it so they have more freedom to be creative maybe? It's less micro-managed and they can do ridiculous, goofy stuff. …I hope they can take that kind of idea for [other storylines]," said Williamson.
To support Taylor Williamson follow him on Twitter @TaylorComedy or visit his website www.TaylorWilliamson.com.
Taylor's full interview with Wrestling Inc aired as part of a recent episode of our WINCLY podcast. It can be heard via the embedded audio player at the bottom of this post. In it Taylor discusses the WWE 24/7 Championship, helping to write jokes for pro wrestling legends, how WWE backstage politics are like a soap opera, how WWE and America's Got Talent are the same, Colt Cabana's influence on comedy and pro wrestling and more.