Web Video: Z! True Long Island Story
Here's a hypothetical for you: You're employed by the WWE
, but you're a lower mid-carder
who doesn't get much air time. You have to count your blessings if you appear at all on the main shows such as WWE Raw
or WWE SmackDown!
, and forget about having an actual match. You're desperate to generate any
kind of interest with the higher-ups or the booking committee—not because you're an attention whore, but because this is your livelihood on the line, and you could very easily be shown the door at any time. So what do you do?
Most wrestlers wouldn't know what to do. But Zack Ryder
isn't most wrestlers. Apparently deciding his own twitter page
and his own Facebook page
wasn't enough, Zack started his own Web Original
series, most of which are a Day In The Life
-style videos of him discussing whatever is bothering him at the time, or just clips of him screwing around whatever town he's in.
The show's worked out well for Zack: not only has he become one of WWE's biggest merchandise sellers, but "The Ryder Revolution" brought him more success in his wrestling career, as he started 2011 as a regular on WWE's fourth-tier Internet-only show Superstars
and ended 2011 as the United States Champion and one of the most popular wrestlers in the company. Not bad for a guy who admitted that he did the show to "get noticed or get fired", eh?
After nearly a year of videos, the show was moved to WWE's official YouTube page.
The older videos are located here
On January 11 2013, after making 100 videos, Zack ended the show.
Tropes seen in this series include:
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: Running down the list of social media outlets, in regards to fake accounts of his:
"Now for some reason, there's a whole lot of fake Twitters, Facebooks, YouTube channels, MySpace—who still uses MySpace, bro?—but unless you're watching this on a channel that says 'LongIslandIcedZ', it is a fake.
- Big "NO!": In episode 55, when an amnesiac Zack's dad re-learns that John Morrison died.
- The Cameo: He promised that John Cena would be a guest on his show. And he was...for as long as it took for John to walk by, shake his hand, say hi, and walk off (this was deliberately done, Cena was there a total of 3 seconds, and had his back to the camera most of the time.) Still didn't stop Zack from marking like an eight-year-old Hulkamaniac, though.
- Zack filmed the ending to episode 16 during the May 30, 2011 episode of WWE Raw in which John Cena cuts in on the way to his match with R-Truth. Doubles as the Funny Background Event of that Raw episode.
- Joey Styles came out of retirement to call a match between Ryder and an Ultimate Warrior plush figure.
- Hugh Jackman introduced episode 32 after working a segment with Zack on Raw.
- Jimmy Hart introduced episode 41
- After Eve shot him down in episode 42, Mae Young pops up to comfort him.
- Dennis Haskins, Principal Belding from Saved by the Bell, have appeared in two episodes.
- And now we can add Howard Finkel to the list of people who have made introductions for the show.
- Camera Abuse: Episode 13 ends with him tossing his Cool Shades at the camera, knocking it over.
- Catch Phrase: "Take care, spike your hair!" and, of course, "Woo, woo, woo! You know it, bro!"
- Channel Hop: After 50 episodes, the show was moved to WWE's official YouTube page.
- Clip Show: Episode 51, that was the first to be hosted on the official YouTube page for WWE, showed clips from previous episode, so new and old viewers could catch up and see how far he'd gotten.
- Cool Shades
- Deadpan Snarker: Dolph Ziggler, when he's not hamming it up.
- Does This Remind You of Anything?: Walking in on his dad watching John Morrison's entrance video while vigorously using his Shake-Weight.
- Easter Egg: Since his 3rd video, Dolph Ziggler and Peter Venkman action figures can be found hidden in each episode.
- Easy Amnesia: After being hit by a car, Zack's dad is back to being a MoFo.
- Evil Twin: Who really was behind the attack of Chiopetta.
- Executive Meddling: His show ended up suffering from this after the Channel Hop, with Episode 63 having 2 minutes edited out and in Episode 64 a rant against WWE is edited out, but in it stead a promo for Extreme Rules was played. Turns out it was Eve who suggested the edit.
- Face-Heel Turn: Dolph Ziggler performed a weird variant of this. He has long been a Heel on WWE TV, yet was friends with Zack for months after his Heel-Face Turn in WWE continuity. However, the Hugh Jackman incident on RAW prompted him to turn heel on Z! True Long Island Story.
- Five-Man Band
- Follow the Leader: Once the show started picking up steam and Zack started getting some momentum behind him, a lot of other Superstars also decided to do Youtube shows, with varying ideas behind them and levels of success. Curt Hawkins and Daniel Bryan's both lasted for a few weeks before they stopped, Melina's done a few, but got released anyway, and Chris Masters didn't begin his until after he was let go. Some do it for self-publicity, others simply do it for fun. (Technically, they're all following behind Matt and Jeff Hardy, but Zack has had the most success out of it.)
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: During episode #35, Dolph Ziggler walks past the camera and says, "Tell Brazzers that I don't get into bed for less than $10,000 a day." Brazzers is an adult film company (This is also probably a reference to the fact that they apparently took the "Ask The Heel" logo from the Brazzers logo.◊)
- Episode 39's #areyouseriousbro tweet is from Keiran Lee, a male pornstar who does scenes for Brazzers.
- Episode 74: "History was made...as I made Eve wet." Yeah, those who watched Super Smackdown knew what Zack was talking about, but seriously, how did this get past the WWE production team?!
- Guest Host: In episode 48, just days after Zack been attacked by Kane, Chiappetta filled in for Zack. When Kane attacked Zack again two weeks later, Big O served as the guest host in episode 50.
- Hope Spot: There been a couple of attempts to restart/revive the series, but nothing has happened so far.
- I Ate WHAT? / Gargle Blaster: He finally unveils what an actual Long Island Iced Z is. It's a mix of vodka, rum, tequila, diet soda, and protein. Even he couldn't drink it.
- Last Name Basis/No Name Given/Only Known by Their Nickname: Chiapetta is only called just that; Zack's father is refereed to either Zack's dad or Mr Ryder; and the Big O, is, well, he's called nothing but the Big O.
- Broski of the Week / Sign of the Week
- Memetic Hand Gesture: Holding his right index finger and thumb in the shape of an L, while holding up one finger on his left hand.
- The Merch / Merchandise-Driven: Plugging T-shirts with his picture on them. "Go ahead, buy one—I gotta eat."
- Then the new t-shirts, then the headband, then the sunglasses, then the... hooded scarf?
- Has become somewhat of a Running Gag, as each week he has become increasingly covered in merchandise, to the point where it's difficult to see Zack in there at all
- No Budget: Lampshaded in the first episode, as he mocks his own lacking background, and how he recorded it on a Flip camera his parents gave him as a Christmas gift.
- Even now, his background is several of his photos on one of those tri-fold posterboards that elementary-school science projects are on.
- Once an Episode: The "Broski of the Week", wherein he makes mention of one of his fans.
- Only Sane Man: In episode 59, Zack was the embodiment of this when he reacted to all the crazy stuff that went on around him. From the Big O plans to join the WWE to Stanfords crazy merch ideas.
- Our Ghosts Are Different/Our Angels Are Different: Hard to tell from one appearance, but Morrison pops in from above to congratulate Zack on the one year anniversary of the show.
- The Password Is Always Swordfish: How Dolph Ziggler keeps interrupting the show with his "Ask the Heel" segment. Zack changes the password every week on his computer, Ziggler keeps guessing them right.
- Please Subscribe to My Channel, Bro: "Dont forget to like this video, leave a comment, subscribe to my channel, go back and watch all my other episodes, aaaaaaaaaand like me on Face Book, follow me on Twitter, buy all this Zack Ryder merchandise on WWEShop.com, and take care, spike your hair. Woo Woo Woo!" *Glasses Pull* "You know it!"
- Perma Stubble
- Put in a Limo: Morrison, due to his contract expiring and wouldn't be able to film any future episodes.
- Bus Crash: Which promptly blew up.
- Which was a parody of the infamous "Vince McMahon got blown up" WWE storyline.
- Really Dead Montage: Parodied after the above happened, on the next episode.
- Shaped Like Itself: Broskis on Broadway The Musical, "a show so inspiring, Newsweek magazine calls it so inspiring".
- Shout-Out: The name is a take on "E True Hollywood Story".
- Scott Stanford revealing himself to being the one who attacked Chiapetta was a direct shout out to The Reveal of Vince McMahon as the Higher Power. Zack would even call Stanford a "son of a bitch" on Twitter an hour after the video was uploaded on WWE.com, mirroring Jim Ross's commentary that night.
- In Episode 7, references Beyond the Mat, specifically Dennis Stamp, complete with trampoline.
- Episode 7 also references the "aftershave" sequence in the first Home Alone film.
- Sigil Spam: His logo, a stylized combination of the letters Z and R.
- Spin-Off: Chi! True Long Island Story, focused around Chiapetta and with Zack helping with production.
- Stalker with a Crush: Zack's Dad to Melina - he calls her in the middle of the night, bro!
- Take That: In episode 29, Ryder asks the viewer, "Do you want to hear the most annoying sound in the world?" Cue an audio clip of The Miz saying "AWESOME".
- Throwing Down the Gauntlet: Ziggler challenged Ryder to match at WrestleMania 29 for the Internet Championship, which Ryder declined, stating he has nothing left to prove. A few episode later and we see Ryder accepting Ziggler challange and shaking hand on it.
- The Rival: At the start of the show, John Morrison due to Morrison being Zack's dad's favorite wrestler. As the series went on, Dolph Ziggler firmly entrenched himself as Zack's big rival to the point that spilled over into TV.
- Verbal Tic: Very liberal use of "bro", including in prefix form.
- Visual Pun: In one episode, Zack struggles scaling a cyclone fence; when the cameraman asks what he's doing, he shouts out, "I'm trying to get over!"
- "Nobody pushes Zack Ryder!" after being shoved.
- After he listened to Vince McMahon's speech to The Rock on Rocky's birthday, he heard Vince mention how the Rock reached for the brass ring. Cue Zack scrambling for "The Brass Ring:" In his mother's jewelry box, then in a box of Ring Pops. He finally finds it, and as he's squeeing with delight, he holds up a cheap looking toy wrestling ring he spray-painted gold.
- Zack Ryder draws money.
- Missing the boat with Zack Ryder (a guy posing as WWE and wielding a shovel swings and misses a toy boat with a Zack Ryder action figure on it)
- Dropping the (basket)ball with (a picture of) Zack Ryder.
- WWE gets cold feet (by standing on ice) on putting Zack Ryder (action figure) on television.
- Zack proclaiming it's "time to turn face," cue stop motion video of a Zack Ryder action figure turning its head completely around.
- Wham Episode: Episode 34 ends with Zack just about to do his signature sign-off... But he hears a noise, and takes the camera with him to investigate. He finds Chiappetta in a pool of his own blood, left with a Perfection T-shirt and a mask that Dolph Ziggler had worn when he interrupted the video.
- Episode 42 ends with Zack near the end of his sign-off, when Dolph Ziggler waffles him with the United States Championship out of nowhere.
- Episode 53 ended with Chiappetta and The Big O accidentally running over Zack's dad. Mind you, this was after the latest in many attacks by Kane, and Zack had spent the entire episode in bed.
- The following episode revealed Zack's dad turned out to be okay, taking only a few bumps and bruises. It also revealed it turned him back into a John Morrison fan.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Whatever happened to Scott Stanford's Evil Twin?
- Zack has a segment where he's trying to figure out where Trent Baretta has disappeared to (in real life Trent is down with an injury) and various clips are shown hinting his whereabouts.