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Saturday, October 31, 2009

Book Review: Dear Andy Kaufman, I Hate Your Guts!

-- By: Main Event Radio's Steven Wilson --

Earlier this year I had the pleasure of reviewing and reliving the classic Andy Kaufman wrestling themed films My Breakfast with Blassie & Im From Hollywood as Video Service Corp commemorated the 25th anniversary of Kaufman’s passing. As it turns out they wont be the only ones looking back on Kaufman’s wrestling career as Process Media prepares to release a book entitled “Dear Andy Kaufman, I hate your guts!”

For those not in the know, it all started back in 1979 when Kaufman revealed to close friend and personal producer Bob Zmuda that he was not only a big fan of professional wrestling, but had a particular passion for watching two women wrestle. Weeks later at a birthday party, friends arranged for two women to wrestle in front of Andy. To say the least he loved it, and the idea was turned into a comedy sketch which Kaufman performed on NBC’s Saturday Night Live that year. Women were appalled, and like a true heel, Kaufman used that heat to turn the hatred into a nationwide search for a woman who could defeat him, in return they would receive 1000$, get to shave Kaufman’s head and if they wanted to, even marry him. The gimmick would eventually lead to a huge feud between Kaufman and Memphis, TN/WWE superstar Jerry The King Lawler, but not before Kaufman received challenges from all across the country from upset women who were determined to take Kaufman out.

This new book features a collection of the actual letters & photo’s received from women across the US who were ready to take Kaufman on in the middle of a wrestling ring. Some of the letters are downright hilarious, others accurately portray the anger some of the women had towards Andy Kaufman. Ultimately the collection is able to show you just how great of a heel Andy Kaufman was. After all he had a wide array of women (and some men) convinced that he was the jerk he was portraying on TV. One letter from a male supporter named Ron expressed how he thought Kaufman’s message of what a woman’s role in life should be was long overdue. Meanwhile one of many women who took offence was named Sue who wrote “You Sexist Jerk, Im going to rip your lungs out!”…”Im going to re-arrange your face so badly that when you feel the urge to pick your nose, you’ll scratch your ear lobes!”

According to the book, Kaufman would go through the letters with Zmuda and pick out the cutest girls first. Zmuda would then begin the booking process to set up the match. One cant blame him, some of the girls who answered his challenge are extremely attractive. There is a wide array of color photos throughout the book to prove that, but you also had the complete opposite such as Desperate Doris who wrote “Id love to wrestle Andy Kaufman, It’ll probably be the closest I get to a man all year”

The book contains newly written forewords from the aforementioned Bob Zmuda as well as Kaufman’s girlfriend Lynn Margulies. The result is a work of art that makes for a truly unique collectors item.

Dear Andy Kaufman, I hate your guts! Will be released by Process Media on December 1st 2009 with a list price of $19.95, Although you can pre order it on Amazon for 13.57 US.