Interviews

20 Questions With . . . Mickie James

Mickie James 20Qs Graphic

Readers 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! The feature has, of course continued to Issue 11 where MJF gave us his answers and Issue 12 featuring Rhea Ripley!

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 the legendary Mickie James ahead of NWA EmPowerrr!

If you’d prefer to read about Masha’s career, that interview is available in Issue 12 of Inside The Ropes Magazine, but if you want to know Mickie James’s favourite band, cheat meal, or what items she would want if she were stranded on a desert island, read on!

What’s your favourite cheat meal?

Ice cream and pizza. Oh, my God, that’s two totally different things, but I love them both.

What’s your favourite video game?

Well, right now, I would say my new favourite game is the RetroMania game that they sent us, but not the RetroMania game, the car racing game that we play with my son all day.
I think my all time favourite game, still to this day, is probably Sonic the Hedgehog. The Sega version. Like, the old school Sega version. I’d have maybe picked Mario, because Mario was a great one and I had all the Marios, but Sega was one of those guilty… Not everybody had a Sega Genesis.

 

What would you be watching if you had a day of Netflix and chill?

Okay, so I just finished Killing Eve, but that’s on Hulu. Have you seen that show? So we just finished the third season right before I left to come back home for the show. God, what a great show!
And I just started Dirty John, it’s on Netflix, but it’s the Betty Broderick Story now. The female version. It’s in season two. So it just started that. I tend to watch a lot of Disney and children’s television, not necessarily by choice, but it happens to be on the television all the time.
Yeah, I watched some pretty crazy stuff. I’ll be honest, I don’t watch a ton of television unless it’s something that REALLY captivates me, mostly because I don’t get control of the television. Either my son has it or Nick has it and so then it’s like, by the time I get to it, I’m too tired. I’m just like and I’m not trying to watch a bunch of World War II documentaries.

Which movie have you seen the most?

In my life? Oh, Dirty Dancing for sure. For sure!

Which actor should play you in a movie about your life?

I mean, can I be selfish and choose JLo just because I want someone who looks like a million dollars all the time?
I know that there’s probably… Jessica Biel, I think is a lot of people kind of say, but I don’t know. I’m going to go with JLo just because I’m secretly in love with her and I think she’s amazing and I kind of want to be like her. But Jessica Biel could work, too. But even Scarlett Johansson, I think she’s got a good range and she could play different periods in my life.
Jennifer Lopez / Mickie James / Jessica Biel

What’s your favourite musician or band?

Besides myself…? No, I’m kidding!
Wow. I think my favoruite musician of all time is probably Prince. Just because he was so well-rounded and he taught himself how to play and write and just do all thsoe things.
I also obviously like to go like, oh, I love all the legends like Reba and Dolly, but Garth Brooks, I think was a huge, huge, influential person for me because he was so much more than just a country singer. He was an entertainer and he sold out stadiums and shows and all these things.
Taylor Swift. I say Taylor, too, because I think we’ve watched her grow up. We’ve watched her literally grow up in front of us. And she’s turned into such a strong songwriter and performer, and you get those once… Obviously, there’s some really, really great artists out there all in the world. But it’s very rare that you get like a Beatles or, you know, a band or someone that can sell out stadiums alone without an opener, without a second act. It’s very rare that you reach that pinnacle of type of success and it’s really, really cool to see. I felt like Garth Brooks was that for me when I was younger and like he was just blowing it up.
I love all kinds of music. I’m a bit of a music connoisseur, if you will. I have everything on my iPad from Disney music to classical to rap – because I get really gangster in the gym. The only music that I probably don’t play a lot of or don’t really care for is super heavy, heavy metal. I don’t like it.

You had me at Disney. Now I feel like I want a Mickie James Disney covers album.

Oh, yeah! [Mickie sings] Kiss the girl!

Yeah, I just can’t do it [heavy metal] but I do like a little bit, like I love that Metallica album with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra, that’s one of my favorite albums, especially for working out or getting ready. But I don’t consider Metallica that heavy, heavy metal that I’m talking about.

It’s just like that… [Mickie roars] ..I’m like, “I can’t.” My brain doesn’t process it. I can’t understand it. I don’t know what it is. I just feel like I’m like this [Mickie holds onto the arms of her chair and leans back] the whole time and it’s just uncomfortable. I don’t like it.

If you could only listen to one song for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Wow. I don’t know, God, I don’t know. Not my own song, clearly. I don’t know.

Let’s see, I’m going to do Prince, Little Red Corvette. I don’t know if it’s the greatest song of all time, but it’s a pretty awesome song.

I should have said Purple Rain, but like everybody, that’s one of those songs that everybody plays and it’s like, I don’t want to be sad my whole life. I want to feel good about it.

 

Pineapple on pizza – yes or no?

Yes! Love it. I love it. I love it.
Especially with ham or the bacon. Because what you need is the salty offset, right? So the sweet and savoury together. Yes.
What I don’t like on my pizza is anchovies. Ever get those things out of their olives. Take them or leave them. Don’t need them! Not necessary.
I just think that you can overcomplicate a pizza. You can put too much stuff on the pizza, so quit doing that and just kind of keep it simple. It’s bread, it’s the sauce, it’s the meat or whatever – but pineapple pizza is a win for me.

What three items would you take if you were stuck on a desert island?

Probably a blanket, so I’m not cold or I could maybe make a tent out of it or something. I would hope for a tent, but clearly that’s not happening on a desert island.
So three items. A blanket, let’s hope for. Hmm. A spear or something, so I can eat and maybe something that I could use as a cup to gather water in some type of a bucket of sorts so I can get some fresh water because the rest of it – like, tools, utensils – you could kind of make those. I was going to say a lighter until I learned how to make fire with the damn rocks together, a lighter or a pack of matches. Yeah.

What’s your secret talent? And it has to be one we don’t know about!

So not the horses either? Wow.
I don’t know what my secret talent would be. I don’t know that I’m that talented to have a secret talent that nobody knows about.
I used to be able to touch my nose to my tongue, but I think that that doesn’t really happen anymore. [Mickie tries to touch her nose with her tongue]
It’s close! Then I used to be able to do this thing where I could get… My sister and I could get one leg behind my head. The whole where you’re like a pretzel like this, but I’m not that flexible anymore. So that’s not a secret talent anymore of I think my secret talent is bullsh***ing, just bullsh***ing my way through a lot of things.

 

What’s your most annoying habit?

My OCD. My OCD of everything – of like my brain, like I don’t know if it’s just me. When I pack my luggage to go on the road, for example, these are the things that I do. I have to completely unpack it so I can repack it, even though a lot of the stuff that I just unpacked is going back in the suitcase.
But it’s because I have to find this position and set it in there because everything has its place. It has to go in so I can maximise the space in the suitcase. Even when I get to said hotel, in the evening, I don’t unpack my suitcase in the sense of pulling all my stuff out. It’s only crazy people who do that, put stuff in their drawers. Don’t do that unless you’re staying in the hotel for more than three days. That’s crazy. Why do people do that?
I will completely unpack my bags, all my toiletries and all that stuff but, before I can close the bag, I have to make sure everything’s reorganised again and back in its own little spot. Yeah, that’s that’s kind of a crazy thing that I do. But it is everything from dishes, from laundry. I do the laundry a specific way. It’s how I do it. I have to do all the laundry before I can leave to go on the road. The amount of times I’ve stayed up till three in the morning doing laundry because I needed to finish the last load before I could go on the road. I don’t know why. These are things that I put myself through.

If you weren’t a wrestler, what would you be?

I would probably be a horse trainer. That’s what I was going for, that’s what I was trying to be. I mean, some people probably think I was like, “Oh, I’ll be a singer.” Like, I honestly didn’t think singing was on the cards for me. I always thought that, but I also didn’t think that I was capable of it. I didn’t think I was. The same things we say about wrestling. Like who’s going to. I was from Montpelier, Virginia. So the idea of being a star in the music world seemed far more unobtainable for me than the wrestling. But even the wrestling seemed unobtainable for me back then.

What wrestling match do you re-watch the most?

Probably some of my favourite stuff that I’ve ever watched was, like, Midnight Express vs. Rock ‘n’ Roll Express, and it wasn’t something that I really understood how powerful it was until I went to OVW and we got all these tapes, which I still have all my tapes. We watched, obviously, because Cornette was there, but we watch a lot of tag team wrestling and stuff. I think that the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express might be one of the greatest babyface tag teams of all time. In my opinion.

I just think they’ve never really played a heel but the way that they would sell, the way that they would make all the towns and really get their talent, get their rivals over and just people loved them. They just love, loved, loved them and there’s a certain art to selling and I feel like that’s one of the arts that is kind of getting forgotten today, and I hope that we bring that back because that is where the emotion comes in. If you can make people believe that you’re really in jeopardy and hurt.

I think it’s one of my I think a lot of people go to the same… Like the Shawn Michaels and Ric Flairs, who I always I mean, anything that you they literally are the GOATSs. Anything that you watch of theirs is going to be amazing. They have defined how to not only make money in this business, but how to make careers and not just theirs, but other people’s careers in the business. If you’re ever going to watch to try to figure out how to become one of the greatest of all times, those are obviously your first top two that you could watch.
Kurt Angle, my opinion, one of the greatest of all time, he’s so incredible. The Rock. I mean, Randy Orton, in my opinion, is today’s the modern GOAT in the sense of he literally can go in there… I love old school style, I love story-telling somebody he can go in there and work with anyone and I don’t ever not believe anything that he’s doing. There’s zero room for error. I believe everything that he’s doing. It’s just perfection every time. And it’s because he doesn’t cater to the bullshit and he just wrestles how he wrestles and he doesn’t care. He can squeeze your head off for five minutes. And I just love it. I love it. That’s just old school. That’s like that old school style to me that I love, that makes sense to me.

 

What’s your pre-match ritual?

Besides, for whatever reason, having to pee like literally three minutes before my music’s about to hit in Gorilla and then you’re like “OH! How far away is it?”
No, I usually have my earbuds in. I’m stretching and sometimes jumping rope or just like stretching and like in Gorilla. But whatever. I’m not typically like going over my spots or stuff like that just because that will confuse me. But I’m a lot backstage, just kind of stretching and fire and I do a lot of firing the girls up in Gorilla. Like, that’s me. I’m like clapping, like, “Come on, girls, let’s kill it!” Stuff like that, making a scene. Usually you can hear me. You can probably hear me out in the stadium because my voice projects, like a crazy person yelling backstage.

Who’s the biggest locker room prankster you have ever met and why?

Oh, God, not me! I’m a prankster and a jokester but not like that.

Wait, maybe it is me! I don’t feel like people don’t prank and joke as much as they used to, you know, and you always find those people that you can joke the most with you – like Foxy and I would joke on each other all the time. We would mess with each other all the time. But you can’t necessarily do it with everybody. Oh, God. I don’t know.

Alicia Fox is a great answer!

Oh, yeah, but she only messed with me! She did kind of prank and mess with the other girls and stuff so I’m going to say Foxy. But in a loving way!

What’s the best present you’ve ever received?

The best one besides my son, obviously. The best gift I ever received, I think, was my horse at 11 – Rhapsody.
I was really I was going through a lot like I just kind of was like so young and uncertain and had a lot going on – and she was therapy for me. She was really my escape.
I had her from when I got her when I was 11 and my grandma got her for me for my birthday and Christmas present. And obviously I spent every summer at the farm working for the horses and training all these horses. I didn’t have my own and my sister didn’t have her but my sister got Tabitha around the same time and I got Rapsody.
We showed and we competed, there was a bond with this animal that I just can’t even explain. Like she understood me. I could ride her for hours. I would leave and I would just go ride her for hours and just kind of have conversations with myself, and much-needed conversations, you know, but when I say it was my therapy, it was. That’s why I think that I always thought I would be a horse trainer.
Or when I look at doing like Rhapsody’s Retreat or something like that of like that charity to give and help children going through similar situations because I felt like she was the only thing only person who understood me at that time. Not person, she’s obviously an animal. She’s got four legs, not two.
She lived to be 33 years old. I had to have her put down when I went back to WWE. She wasn’t unhealthy, just her arthritis was so bad and then it got to the winter and she couldn’t lay down or stand up and I had to do it. It was very painful because she’d been with me for so long and she was so healthy. She was healthy. It was just her arthritis. It was honestly her arthritis in her knees and her hips that was starting to cause her too much pain. And I couldn’t watch her do that. I couldn’t put her through it anymore.
That was one of the hardest decisions. I think that’s always a hard because I look at my animals like my family, they’re like my children. They’re like my when I say that bond that I have with Rhapsody or whatever and growing up with her and having these conversations that I couldn’t have with anybody else but with her. So to be able to have to do that, it’s just painful. It’s very, very emotional to think about it now and just like, “Oh, God, don’t cry!”

Who was your wrestling idol growing up?

Oh, Sensational Sherri. If not, then it would be, on the male side, Macho Man Randy Savage. Yeah. That’s my two all time favorites. Always has been, always will be. Can’t change or try to change it.

Who would be your dream match?

Well besides Sherri, because I never had a chance to face her, I would say, Luna Vachon, I think I would love to have worked with a Luna Vachon because she terrified me as a kid, as a fan growing up and wanting to be like… I don’t know why Scary Sherri or Sensational Sherri didn’t terrify me. I think, Luna, it was more of the stuff… I thought they were like legit tattoos on her head – and she shaved her head. She was just terrifying, just absolutely terrifying. But then when I go back and I watch her stuff. I’m like, I think we could have had…. I know how I like to wrestle and I like to to sell and make my opponent look good and credible. But I think that I could have done some cool stuff with her. And I think that she often goes underneath the radar and people forget how long she was there or how much cool stuff that she was doing, and how different she was before It was cool to be different. You know what I mean? Like she’s just one of those people that kind of slip under the radar a bit.

 

What’s your guilty pleasure?

Oh, there’s so many things. Besides alcohol?!
Oh, there’s so many things! Obviously, I really am a fan of sweets and deep fried stuff, that’s the Southerner in me. I really love fried chicken and I love country fried steak, and I love all these things that I’m not supposed to have, including deep fried Oreos. Why do they do these things at the fair?! I really love that food!
Like, I’m such a foodie, like I love all the food that, aside from, please do not try to serve me intestines or brains or anything….bugs. Don’t try to serve me any weird stuff, but real food, good food, I’m a sucker for it! Like I’m such a foodie.
That’s why I hate diet, like I don’t diet. I really struggle with it because I just like food too much and it’s offensive to me to eat food that tastes awful or to have to do that to yourself because it’s offensive, because food is meant to be enjoyed.

As a Scottish person who lives in a country where we deep-fry everything, including chocolate, I’m sold on the Oreos!

Well, this is something that happens at the fair. One of my favorite things, and this is like more of a fair going thing is the funnel cakes. If you’re going to an event and they have a funnel cake stand, I can assure you that I am getting a funnel cake. I can absolutely 100% guarantee that that is happening.
French fries. Oh my God. I love French fries. Like stupid, like little simple stuff, but like hand cut French fries with the sea salt and vinegar – oh, my God. Done!

Who would be the guests, from anyone throughout history, at your dream dinner party and why?

Marilyn Monroe, because I have many questions for her.
I would love to have Oprah. I think I would love to have Oprah there.
God, there’s so many, but I can only have three. Oh, I think that Queen Elizabeth, or maybe not like, maybe not like this Queen, Queen Elizabeth, but maybe Mary Queen of Scots. I love that story and I would like to have a conversation with her. I’m very fascinated by that time period like that, that whole period of time, like before technology and all that stuff
I am still super fascinated at, like, culture, even like I’m still so fascinated with mythology and like the Roman and the Greek mythology and the whole rise and fall of their all the things. But like that whole all of that history I think is really, really important. And it just I’ve always been obsessed with like the Renaissance art, like all those period pieces. And it’s just part of history.

Thanks so much to Mickie James for taking the time! You can read our full interview with Mickie James in this month’s Inside The Ropes Magazine.

For more editions of 20 Questions, you can subscribe to Inside The Ropes Magazine or check out the Interviews section of ITRWrestling.com – including with Alexander Wolfe, Wesley Blake and Chelsea Green!