“Live! With Chris Jericho” Podcast
Special Guest: Stephanie McMahon
April 30, 2015
Recap by: Adam Martin of Wrestleview.com
The following aired live on the WWE Network following Smackdown on 4/30.
Chris Jericho kicks off the live podcast mentioning that Stephanie McMahon just came from the WWE employee party. Jericho asks why he wasn’t invited. Stephanie said he is always invited. She talks about celebrating anniversaries with employees.
Jericho talks about the WWE studio in Connecticut and asks how many people WWE employees as of right now. Stephanie says 800. He brings up her new Chief Brand Officer role and talking about her recent trip to China. Stephanie mentions her Eisenhower fellowship and getting the chance to travel overseas to take part.
Jericho brings up how she still has to defend WWE as a form of entertainment. Stephanie said that is her new role to educate people. She talks about the growth of the brand the last decade including the launch of the WWE Network.
Jericho talks about WWE being a family business with the McMahon family. He asks what it is like having your dad as your boss. “It’s very challenging,” adds Stephanie. Stephanie said Vince puts a lot of pressure on his kids to do better. Jericho points out that Vince is standing off to the side watch. We can hear Vince audibly say something off camera. Stephanie said Vince wants her to fight and earn everything she gets.
Jericho asks about ever making Vince mad. Stephanie said the worst is when he is “disappointed in you” adding, “As a performer he’s made me reshoot things.” She mentions a story around the time of the storyline where she owned ECW and being forced to go back out and reshoot a segment after Vince wasn’t happy with how it went the first time.
Jericho talks about Stephanie being a lot like Vince on television. Stephanie said Shane calls her “Vincess” as a joke. She talks about studying her father so closely and that she might be unaware that she emulates him on television. Jericho talks about how it wasn’t always that way and described her as a deer in headlights. Stephanie talks about learning lessons in the corporate world and growing as a character on WWE television.
They discuss the character she plays on television and then going across the world representing the brand. Jericho asks if people mix that up or if the corporate people aren’t really watching the way fans do. Stephanie talks about the B.A. Star campaign and asking how many children were bullied. She talks about telling the children that she plays a bully on television and Jericho mentions how that could send mixed signals at times.
Jericho asks Stephanie what it was like growing up in the business. “It’s how I grew up and I don’t know any different really,” said Stephanie. She talked about Hulk Hogan and Mr. T coming over to her home before WrestleMania. Stephanie tells a funny story about Mr. T signing a ton of merchandise for her and Mr. T doing that a year ago for her children.
She tells another story about getting scared backstage by George “The Animal” Steele as a kid. Stephanie said Vince laughed at how bad Steele felt and how she started putting together how the wrestling industry worked from a character standpoint. Her favorites were The Killer Bees and Tito Santana. “I did not root for Hulk Hogan,” adds Stephanie.
Stephanie talks about having a special bond with Andre the Giant according to her mother Linda. She said one thing she noticed was that people always treated Andre differently. Stephanie said she mentioned that to Andre one day and falling asleep on his lap the night of WrestleMania. Jericho pressed on people treating her differently for being the daughter of Vince McMahon. Vince taught her that not everyone is going to like you, but that you have to look yourself in the mirror and know that you are a good person.
Jericho asked if she ever play wrestled with her brother Shane. Stephanie tells a story about them rough housing as kids and Vince rushing to see what was going on.
Stephanie said she started with WWE at 14 or 15 answering phones and remembering people based on their phone extensions. She talked about fielding fan calls where one fan was upset about Bobby Heenan saying that Santa Claus didn’t exist on television. Stephanie said she was able to coach the woman to calm down and was sent flowers as a thank you.
She continues to talk about working for WWE in the summer including the former marketing department that is now digital. She talks about how this was back in the old AOL days. Stephanie also talked about working in HR, production (including putting together a SummerSlam spot that she was proud of) and then working with her mother (who was then the CEO) following her graduation from college. Stephanie talked about advancing on to work directly with her father and also going on the road with him. She said shortly after that she got into sales with WWE and then got involved as a character on television.
Jericho asks her about dating Triple H. Stephanie said at first Vince forbid her from getting involved with any wrestlers. She added that Vince kind of planted the seed with Vince saying she needed to find a nice guy like Triple H. Stephanie talks about Vince giving his blessing at first and then taking it away. She talked about the risk Triple H was taking with his career by dating Vince McMahon’s daughter. Stephanie said they eventually got back together a year later and it was more of a decision on her part to keep it going.
Jericho talks about the relationship they had on television and crediting her for letting his character hit the next level. He talks about some of the horrible things he would say about Stephanie and asked how she felt about it. “It was hard not to laugh…it was fun,” said Stephanie. She talked about loving the back and forth they had together. Jericho brings up Stephanie showing up to TV with a big zit on her face and being totally fine with Jericho bringing it up on television to make fun of her.
He talks about Stephanie getting breast implants and being allowed to make fun of her boob job in Chicago. Stephanie adds, “It was very obvious. How could you not go there?” Jericho talked about some of the zingers he had for Stephanie that night and how The Rock ended up dropping a “mother f*cker” line that didn’t quite get cut off on television. Jericho talked about Vince being really upset with Rock backstage after the segment. Stephanie said getting breast implants was her own personal decision and talked about losing weight and not really liking how she looked after that. Jericho talked about having to clear lines with Vince.
Jericho talks about always hearing the rumor about Stephanie being groomed to take over WWE and not Shane. He asks if it is hard that Shane isn’t here anymore. “Of course it is,” said Stephanie. “Shane was my protector, my teacher and my best friend.” She talked about sharing a passion for the business and how Shane made a decision to go off and do his own thing. “It’s hard and I miss him,” added Stephanie.
She talks about working with her mother on television and being forced to slap her. “It was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. I almost threw up.” She joked that having to kiss Eric Bischoff on television wasn’t one of her favorite things to do on TV either. Jericho talks about how hard slaps were to take from her. Stephanie said the wrestlers always told her to bring it and she definitely did. She said the hardest slap she ever gave out was with The Rock at WrestleMania 31 this year at Levi’s Stadium.
Jericho wants to talk about WrestleMania this year with The Rock and getting UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey getting involved. He asks what the overall plan is for that. “In terms of the overall plan, I don’t know,” added Stephanie. Stephanie talks about Ronda having an incredible career in the UFC and wants her daughters to look up to something like that. She said it was a great story to tell to have Ronda get a hold of her. Jericho asked if they thought about Stephanie vs. Ronda. “Is that a plan? No.” Jericho adds that Dana White said a match isn’t happening and Stephanie said she heard the same.
Jericho brings up the #GiveDivasAChance social media campaign. Stephanie talked about that trending for three days worldwide and Vince McMahon himself even responding to it. Jericho brings up AJ Lee responding with a “smart aleck” tweet and asked if it pissed her off. “It didn’t piss me off as much as…I had to respond diplomatically,” added Stephanie. She said it felt like AJ’s response was more directly at her instead of the actual campaign. “I’m fully behind this movement,” said Stephanie. Jericho said the female talent is certainly available.
Going back to WrestleMania 31, Jericho said he could tell she was feeding off the crowd. “You really enjoy being a bitch,” said Jericho. Stephanie said she really does. “Getting boo’s is the best part of my job,” said Stephanie. She talks about it being the greatest feeling in the world and Jericho said it is the utmost compliment for a heel in wrestling.
Jericho brings up getting thrown in pudding by Vickie Guerrero. Stephanie said she got an infection in her eye after getting tossed in and how production members were mixing it around with their bare feet earlier in the day. She said it was hard to say goodbye to her.
Jericho asks if it is hard to work with Triple H. Stephanie said the hardest thing for her is just getting time with Triple H because they hold different roles within the company.
Jericho asks her favorite match or favorite moment in WWE. Stephanie said it would have to be getting back in the ring at SummerSlam last year with Brie Bella. She talks about her three daughters being in the audience that night to see mom wrestle. Stephanie is trying not to cry describing how great it was to perform in front of her children.
The podcast comes to a close.