While most fans gravitate towards the Schmoedown for the movie trivia and to test their own knowledge, week on week more supporters begin to be gripped by the various characters and their storylines. And while most of tales that have been told over the past year have involved the competitors themselves, none have yet impacted the organisation or the game itself. Until now.
In recent months the campaign for Tom Dagnino to replace Kristian Harloff as the league’s commissioner has been growing in popularity. Despite the Lion’s Den enjoying a stellar 2017, Jeff Sneider’s defeat to Harloff and Dagnino’s own loss to Matt Knost has seen the leader of the competition’s top faction question the integrity of the game and its organisers.
Many have scoffed at the idea that Dagnino could ever run the league. The Schmoedown would not be the show it is today without the tireless hard work of Harloff, and having anyone else at the driver’s seat – particularly the man formerly known as ‘Finstock’ – could do irreparable damage.
But, having stewed over this for the past few days, this could be a storyline that would put all others in the shade in terms of both its scale and the controversy it would cause. It would take a huge undertaking from all involved within the Schmoedown, and the wider Collider-verse, but it does not seem as far-fetched as some would argue.
(Before reading any further, it’s important to understand that the following only reflects what could/should happen ON SCREEN! I’m not suggesting that Harloff ACTUALLY handover organising the Schmoedown to the self-appointed king of chest definition, and it would just mean instead he can step away from the camera for a few weeks while producing the most epic storyline the show has ever seen! Right, ready? Well read on then…)
Obviously this has already begun with Dagnino promoting himself as a potential new commissioner, and further anti-Lion’s Den decisions either within matches or outside of them will only serve to further their case against the current establishment. But this could all come to a head at the Schmoedown Spectacular.
Harloff has hinted that Dagnino’s brewing feud with Jay Washington will come to a head during the end of year event in December, and it would be great to see the two best mouthpieces in the game face off in the ring.
Should that come to pass, it could serve as the catalyst for Dagnino to launch his coup and take over the Schmoedown early in 2018. Win or lose against “The Urban Gladiator”, an argument could be made – from his side anyway – that the league requires a shake-up and as such he should take over.
Quite how the mechanics would work is up in the air, but one suggestion would be for Dagnino and Harloff to clash backstage, with the latter eventually giving in and claiming he is tired of all the moaning and throwing the keys to the Schmoedown in Dagnino’s direction. The age of movie trivia’s answer to Vince McMahon seemingly over.
HOW IT WOULD WORK
Taking the 2017 Schmoedown calendar into consideration, Dagnino taking over directly after Spectacular for the opening weeks of 2018 would make the most sense. There are no major events until the Free 4 All in March, and as such the logistics of still having two matches a week should not be too much of an undertaking.
Given the organisational whizz that he is, Harloff will have revealed the first few matches to take place post-Spectacular, and it would be relatively easy to allow Dagnino to act as commissioner while these are played. Whether he asks the questions remains to be seen, but it would make for a great spectacle to see him at the desk alongside Mark Ellis, with “Baby Carrots” apparently unsure how to react to this latest development.
Dagnino could of course shake the schedule up a little bit by handing either Sneider or JTE a singles title shot, but it would be a risk to totally tear up the schedule with fans looking forward to seeing some of their favourite competitors suddenly disappointed at their disappearance from the diary.
It would also be a bold move to totally change the game, but a slight increase in the number of Stallone, Arnie and sports movie questions would offer enough of a hint that this is very much Dagnino’s version of the Schmoedown.
Elsewhere, it would be great to see how Dagnino would impact the rest of the Schmoedown world and Collider. The Rundown could be “forced” to interview different members of the Lion’s Den, and Dagnino could even go as far as calling for Frank Janisch, as a staunt member of Outlaw Nation, to be removed from the panel if he speaks out of turn.
Grace Hancock could become the permanent post-match interviewer as well as taking over presenting duties of ‘Inside Schmoedown’ from Ken Napzok while Dagnino himself could even make an appearance on Movie Talk. This might be overstepping the mark slightly given the two shows do have some different fans, but throwing in Finstock for a one-off appearance so as to plug the Schmoedown could make for great television.
Speaking of Finstock, and Dagnino taking over as commissioner could even open the door for the beard mask to make a return to Schmoedown Towers! After being banned under Harloff’s regime, it would be great to see Bob Finstock in all his glory back and causing chaos once again.
HOW WOULD IT BE RESOLVED?
Of course this could not last forever, and after around a month of Dagnino’s rule would likely be the right amount of time for Harloff to step back up. The difficulty comes in how he can go about out. Here’s how I would pitch it…
Harloff’s schedule has Sneider or JTE down for a singles match. However, before the programme officially begins, we see Harloff confront Dagnino backstage and offer him a compromise. If the member of the Lion’s Den wins, they can fight for the title (presuming they are not champion already!), but instead of their scheduled opponent they will be facing Harloff’s champion. Should that person win, Harloff returns to take over as commissioner.
Cue the match, and once Dagnino has introduced his competitor, Harloff appears from behind the curtain, followed by the likes of Emma Fyffe, Josh Macuga, Clarke Wolfe and Ken Napzok. Cue the golden throat intoducing his champion – the two-time former Schmoedown Champion of the World: Mark “Yodi” Reilly!
That’s right – all this has been leading up to Reilly’s triumphant return to Schmoedown action following his hiatus. Obviously if he wins then Harloff takes back over, but even if he loses Dagnino can frame this as proof that he is the real MVP of the Schmoedown and throw the keys back to Harloff to tidy up his mess.
While all this remains unlikely, it undoubtedly would make for one of the most talked about storylines in Schmoedown history as well some engrossing television both within the matches and beyond. For now, these remain the ramblings of a fan with too much time on his hands – they should be treated as such!
Do you think Dagnino could take over as commissioner somewhere along the line? Have your say in the comments below!