He was the Brain…and now he’s gone.
I’ve watched pro wrestling..oh wait sorry, sports entertainment since I was a kid. I don’t follow it as much anymore, but I still enjoy it.
When I started watching wrestling, it was the mid 80s. It was full of over the top, larger than life characters, like Hulk Hogan, Randy Savage, Andre the Giant and more.
But not all of the WWF(now WWE) starts were in the ring…there was one that didn’t need the muscles to make an impression….that was Bobby Heenan.
Bobby Heenan was a pro wrestler, but he really made his mark as both a manager, and as a announcer. They called him “The Weasel” because he would do and say anything to get in or out of a situation.
The “stable” of wrestlers he managed, we’re called the “Heenan Family”. They included Andre The Giant, Rick Rude, Mr. Perfect, King Kong Bundy, and so many more. He would do what he could to get his wrestlers the win, including getting into the ring.
What made Bobby such a great manager, was that he was the mouth piece when his wrestlers couldn’t talk. He spoke well, and seemed to always get the mood of the moment across on the mic.
But I’ll remember him more as an announcer. As the yang..to Gorilla Monsoon’s ying.
Gorilla and Bobby were the premiere announce team in the WWF during the 80s. Their classic PrimeTime wrestling shows, included some of the most remembered skits during that era.
While Monsoon played the straight man, Heenan was the classical “heel” announcer, but what he added was a layer of comedy that made the show light and fun. Even though the 2 were always at odds…they were very close. Even bringing Bobby to tears years later, while speaking of Monsoon’s death on Nitro.
Here is some of the classic moments from PrimeTime
He also drove other announcers like Vince McMahon, Tony Schiavone and more crazy with his antics.
I can keep writing about how Awesome the Brain was, but it can’t do it justice.
Bobby died today, at the age of 73. Not only did we lose a legend, but we lost someone who was a new type of character when he made his name, and no one has come close since.
To think, even though he hasn’t been on TV in over a decade, the fact that I still watch his best moments on YouTube, tells you the impression he left.
We’ll Miss You Brain…..I’m speaking for every Humanoid out there!!
And the outpouring from the wrestling community has been overwhelming
Our thoughts go out to the family of Bobby "The Brain" Heenan. No manager or commentator was ever better at entertaining us humanoids.— Daniel Bryan (@WWEDanielBryan) September 17, 2017
Bobby Heenan... The Greatest Manager, One Of The Greatest Announcers, And One Of The Best In-Ring Performers In The History Of The Business— Ric Flair® (@RicFlairNatrBoy) September 17, 2017
The news of Bobby "The Brain" Heenan's passing today gutted me.— Jim Ross (@JRsBBQ) September 17, 2017
I loved our time together.
No one ever did it better than the Wease.