Readers of Issue 10 of Inside The Ropes Magazine may have spotted a new feature with WWE Superstar Kofi Kingston where we asked the former WWE Champion 20 questions and got some unique and bizarre answers to the questions that won’t be asked in any other wrestling interview!
Well, the feature has been so popular that we decided it shouldn’t simply be confined to our monthly magazine – so Inside The Ropes‘ Lead Writer Gary Cassidy pitched our 20 Questions to former WWE Superstar Alexander Wolfe, now wrestling as Axel Tischer!
If you’d prefer to read about Axel’s WWE career, that interview is available here, but if you want to know the former SmackDown star’s favourite band, cheat meal, or what items he’d want if he were stranded on a desert island, read on!
What’s your cheat meal?
My favourite cheat meal? I would go with burgers.
What’s your favourite video game?
Oh, that’s a hard question. I’ll go with Metal Gear Solid… Oh, I cannot decide. I’ll need to go between Tekken, Resident Evil and Metal Gear Solid. Those are my evergreens, but I would go with Metal Gear Solid. It’s amazing.
What would you be watching if you had a day of Netflix and chill?
When I had Netflix, I watched The Walking Dead, I watched documentaries about… Sometimes about history and stuff, but most of it is like… I’m very, very into history.
And what was the other thing? Probably something like action movie type… Expendables! Really like you don’t have to think. You just watch and – action! Because when you watch a thriller or something, and you’re kind of like, “What?” But this is just like… [He punches hand]
Which movie have you seen the most?
Probably Batman: Dark Knight. That’s the first movie that pops in. And Star Wars stuff! I’m kind of a little nerd. I’ve grown up in the last month a little bit more but I love comic stuff and I think the movie really I saw the most, like not randomly just, “All right, so…” Something that’s really like, “Let’s go to that.” I was three times in the cinema for that movie and I watched it maybe more than five times. Like, I have the DVD – or Blu Ray – watched it a lot of times, So Batman: Dark Knight for sure.
Which actor should play you in a movie about your life?
Oh, that’s a good question. The actor who played Two Face in The Dark Knight, I do not know the name. Killian Dain is very good at remembering names of actor, so I explain the actor and he has the name already ready. But him, a funny side fact, there is just one app, it’s like you take a picture of your face and you put it into like movie scenes, it’s Face…something. And I did this and I looked the same as him! Or Josh Barnett when he’s ready for that, because I know he’s sometimes acting as well because he lives in LA and he has a lot of like acting friends, like actors. And he definitely is… He’s my older brother. So he gets a lot of times asked, like, “Hey, are you in WWE right now?” He always has to explain, like, hey, no, it’s him.
What’s your favourite band?
[Axel points to two flags behind him] Stick To Your Guns and Stray From The Path. I’m good friends with George, the drummer of Stick To Your Guns. He’s my friend. And Stray from the Path with Tom. He’s one of the guitar players. And I’m really growing so much on those bands. I love the lyrics. I love the message. I love the guys because they all like generous, like cool dudes. And I love to be at the concerts and just go into the pit. And I love in general the hardcore music, but especially those two bands are [he pounds chest] right here.
If you could only listen to one song for the rest of your life, what would it be?
I can’t choose. I have to pass with that because, again, it’s like with video games, but even like ten times worse, I could give you a whole playlist of them – but I would say… So let’s just stay with Stick To Your Guns. My favourite song is Empty Heads, so that basically.
Pineapple on pizza – yes or no?
F**K NO! That’s disgusting. Ask my wife, she eats pineapple and garlic. That’s insane.
What three items would you take if you were stuck on a desert island?
Some kind of a plastic blanket. I love survival stuff. So now it gets serious! A plastic blanket, probably a big knife kind of machete with something where I can do fire. And a water filter which will last forever.
[Gary: I was really hoping you’d say a TV, a DVD player and the Dark Knight DVD!]
No! I’ve seen that movie enough.
What’s your secret talent?
I’m a total goofball with a lot of things, I have trouble with staying serious in a lot of situations. So not when somebody dies or somebody is really sad or something bad happens. But I always picture like Homer Simpson when he has the ape in his head.
So for me, it’s kind of like my wife talks with me about a serious topic and then, in my corner of the head, you see a clown riding on the one-wheeler and do like the ball thing and goes… [He sings circus theme] I hear that. So it’s always kind of she says something very seriously and in my head, I kind of like… But also that’s something because I cannot take things seriously, I have always like tried to impersonate a lot people, and sometimes I’m really good in that and sometimes I could be completely butcher it. But a lot of times, I can impersonate people. I liked that as a kid to impersonate, for example, politicians or something. And sometimes I really can do that, like unintentionally.
What’s your most annoying habit?
I do not get to the point. I like to talk, I like to talk a lot. A lot of things where I see a lot of friends just giving me the eye rolling gimmick. Especially when I teach somebody in wrestling because I like doing seminars and helping other people progress, but I overexplain things. I start with something, I could stop with one sentence and then I have to explain it again and again. And my wife, for example, when I talk with my neighbour about a topic. I do not find a way out and you can tell the other person is already, “All right. Oh, something…” They always want to go, but I don’t let them go because I talk and talk and talk. So she sometimes puts the brakes on and yeah, that’s… I like to talk but sometimes I talk too much.
If you weren’t a wrestler, what would you be?
Probably something out of fighting sports, maybe. At one point in my career, around 2013, I trained a lot in grappling, jujitsu and MMA, and was thinking maybe doing the switch over from wrestling to MMA because, at that time, wrestling wasn’t that much good for me.
Then I got back on track because I had a three week to one month tour in Japan. So then I kind of came back refreshed and everything. But before that I was kind of like, “Ah, maybe I’ll do MMA,” so maybe an MMA fighter or something like that.
What wrestling match (not involving you) do you rewatch the most?
Oh, that’s a good one! Probably Austin and Bret Hart, WrestleMania XIII, I Quit Match because I’m a huge Steve Austin fan and Bret Hart is one of the greatest in-ring performers, so that is one of the matches. I could tell more, but this is all always a match that pops up in my head. So basically I could watch it over and over again.
What’s your pre-match ritual?
My prematch ritual is basically, with SAnitY, I always try to find a way that I could get into this character [snaps fingers] like this.
So I always had like, this moment when the music hit, I kind of like stood there with my arms like a scarecrow and just stretched my neck and just breathe in and breathe out, and just kind of change into that persona, trying to get me in the mood with the music, because music is a big like a stimulation for me to be creative and to think. I can control my emotion with music because I feel a lot of that, what I hear.
But like it could be more like a breathing because it’s a little bit like nervous. Sometimes more, sometimes less, but like a little bit nervous and I figure that I get this way before I go out, just take a deep breath in and out stuff like this. And also, like a lot of times with my hair, try to find a place where it’s not like spiking up or just it looks weirder than it actually already is – but it’s more like the breathing. But I do not remember if I have something else, maybe unintentionally, but yeah.
What’s the weirdest thing a fan has asked you to sign or the weirdest fan request you’ve ever had?
I was lucky – or not fortunate enough to get that so far. I know a lot of persons, especially female talents, who got the weirdest fan mail, but I cannot remember. A lot of times I got some messages from German fans and they totally made no sense. Or a little bit under the belt line, which I don’t care – good for them, but like not the way like you read it and you’re angry. It’s more like you read it and you’re amused or you have to laugh because it totally makes no sense and it’s totally wrong writing something.
But I think the weirdest part is really when the fans ask you about, “Hey, can you help me with getting a job?” Or “How can I apply for the WWE?” So nowadays you can say, “Hey, go on the Performance Center page and enrol.” But it was kind of, “How can I apply, can I join the club?” And stuff like this. So it’s not really a lot of, like, funny stories about that. But that’s the weirdest I get.
What’s the best present you’ve ever received?
The best present I ever received… At WrestleMania Axxess, I think it was in New Orleans, there was a fan and she made figures! So she did them for all wrestlers on the convention, she did like figures like this and she has an Instagram page. @RuinedCreations!
The details on blows me away. The jacket was the same, even like the pants with everything on it from the SAnitY outfit. So she really did a good job with that and I still have it. And also she did all four SAnitY members and every one of us had like a different chaos symbol, and she really got that straight that she did Nikki’s chaos symbol. Mine was on the on the jacket.
So she really got into the details and it always blows my mind when you think about it, that you have people who like what we’re doing and they take the time to ask us for a photo or they take the time to want an autograph or want to have something signed, even at five in the morning in the airport. And I totally understand if people are not having it and if they really don’t want to do it, but it always blows my mind.
We’re all the same. We all cook with water, we all go to the bathroom – so we’re all the same. But they use their time and their creative abilities to do that and then give this as a present. It’s heart-warming and I appreciate the effort. Doesn’t matter what it is. Even like, we got fan mails to the Performance Center and sometimes you have a letter written by a five-year-old or something. You can barely read it and probably the parent, they printed out and give you like a printed letter that you can read, but it’s so sweet and it’s awesome. I’ll take this [figure] to Germany and this also gets a special place like it had here in my office.
Who was your wrestling idol growing up?
Steve Austin. Yeah! Wrestling-wise more because I recently had had the chance to train with him, Fit Finlay, Regal, the European elites on that because that is the wrestling style of to do, like the Ring Kampf, catch wrestling, stuff like this. I would say I’m like a hybrid. I love the catch wrestling stuff, but also I like to go turn it up a little bit and to do something more “spectacular” – but, like, I grew up in the Attitude Era, like 2000. And then when Austin came back, I was huge fan of him and still am. I had the chance to meet him and he did not disappoint me. A lot of times they say “don’t meet your idols because you will be disappointed” but it was vice versa and he was super cool.
Who is your all-time dream opponent and why?
Oh. There are a lot so people I never wrestled, number one would be Cesaro, because he’s the best. Amazing. Such a great human being, one of the best wrestlers. So talented. He’s a role model for sure, because he’s such a persona, even in real life, and he’s such a smart, funny guy and I would love to work with him.
Also AJ Styles because he’s great. I had the chance to work with Finn Balor, which was on my bucket list as well. Awesome dude as well. But I would go with Cesaro.
What’s your guilty pleasure?
Quite easy – mosh pit! Like violent dancing! Because it’s weird when you see it and don’t understand it and it’s also like weird because you think they are punching each other in the mouth, which sometimes happens.
Regularly I’m quite boring. I like to play video games and stay at home and stuff like this, like every adult nowadays does, but I go to hardcore concerts and get into the pit. It’s quite dangerous because you can get injured. I’m not saying somebody is punching your tooth out, but if someone jumps in the side of the knee and you f**k up your ACL or something. But for me, I love to do it. It thrives me in a way.
It’s good cardio training. I always come out the pitch soaking wet. Like legit from underwear to shirt. You get all your aggression out without being really violent in the way of like, you go to a post soccer game meeting on the grass or something. So that’s something where people think, “What the f**k?”
Who would be the guests (from anyone throughout history) at your dream dinner party (and why)?
You know what? Bill Burr! I would take Bill Burr! I love this guy, because when he starts ranting about stuff, it’s super hilarious. But I like a lot of views has about like certain stuff. For example, especially nowadays with corona, everybody is an expert. That’s the reason why I decided that I hate social media.
Now I have to do it again because it’s a free commercial. But before that I was avoiding it because there are too many “this side and that side” and he had a great saying on that, that somebody tried to explain it and he asked him, “Okay, are you a doctor or how do you know?” And he said, “No, no, I just assumed.” He said, “OK, bye.” So the way he views a lot of things and he’s very smart. He has studied a lot and read a lot, so he knows a lot of stuff that you don’t know when you just watch television, so he would be interesting to sit there and get hammered with him. So I would take him and two friends.
For more editions of 20 Questions, you can subscribe to Inside The Ropes Magazine or check out the Interviews section of ITRWrestling.com including this one with Wesley Blake. Meanwhile, you can follow Axel Tischer on Twitter here and book a Cameo from him here. Thanks to Axel for taking the time!