Tylene Buck was introduced to wrestling fans as part of the original n.W.o babes. In that role, she was limited to being window dressing. Little did anyone know, she was yearning to make her own impact on the business. After a brief layoff from WCW, Tylene returned as part on the new Misfits In Action (M.I.A) group and was dubbed "Major Gunns."
Despite getting over with the fans, Tylene saw her push stymied by tradionalists in WCW, who didn't like one of the girls getting so popular. When Eric Bischoff came back into power as part of a pending deal for Fusient Media to acquire WCW, one of his first acts was to release most of WCW's female perfomers.
Tylene talks about the attitude of the locker room when she broke in, her start in the n.W.o., the origin of the "Major Gunns" character, her experiences training to be a pro wrestler, her time in Team Canada, the behind the scenes reasons for that switch, her release from WCW, Eric Bischoff, Vince Russo, her current role in XPW, a new project she's involved in, as well as exclusive information on how her storyline with Team Canada was supposed to end
MP: Originally working as a fitness model, what were your first impressions of the wrestling business?
TB: I always watched wrestling and had seen some of the girls like Kim and Liz. I thought it would be cool to do. When I first came in, it was tough because a lot of the guys in the locker room saw me as just another blonde bimbo. It wasn't really until I was with the M.I.A. that I started getting respect. The M.I.A. guys were all really cool and once I got their respect, the majority of the locker room followed.
MP: How did you like your intial run with the n.W.o.?
TB: It was Ok starting out, but not where I wanted to end up. There was really no storyline. We were just part of the n.W.o.'s gimmick. You know, girls, money, things that that. It was fun just as way to get started, but I wanted to be around for the long haul, not just two or three months. I really wanted my own character, so I could make an impact.
MP: Who helped you most backstage?
TB: The M.I.A. guys-Hugh, Chavo, Lash, AWOL, and Van Hammer when he was there. They really took me into the group and always wanted to hear my ideas. Vince Russo, Ed Ferrara and Terry Taylor were great too.
MP: What led up to you leaving the n.W.o. angle?
TB: The n.W.o thing was falling apart. Myself, Midejah 'O Hearn, and Kim (Shikira) Kanner were valeting for Jeff Jarrett. We then wound up moving over to Scott Steiner. Basically, Scott Steiner and I have very different personalities and there was a clash there. So I told them to send me home and let me know when they had another storyline for me.
MP: So how did "Major Gunns" come to pass?
TB: They called me up and asked if I had camouflage and combat boots. I told them that those aren't exactly the kinds of things someone has laying around! They then asked if at least had the boots and I told them I thought I probably did or at least something like them. I was told to show up Monday.
MP: What did you think when you were presented with the "Major Gunns" character.
TB: This is a pretty funny story, actually. I showed up with the boots and they gave me the camo and the script. Then my possible new name was mentioned. No, not Major Gunns. Get ready for this. "Torpedo Girl".
MP: Torpedo Girl !!!!???
TB: Yes, I couldn't believe it! It sounded like a comic book character and I don't look like one. All my friends said "Oh no!" when I told them. That wasn't the only bad one that was suggested either. The other was going to be a takeoff on Pamela Anderson Lee('s Baywatch character, C.J.). So that brought up the name "B.J". Obvioulsy when you think of the intials "B.J." a certain image comes up. I'm sure you can understand why I didn't want that name, either!
MP: So how was "Major Gunns" settled upon?
TB: The guys I was working with helped come up with it. "Major" and "Gunns" were mentioned. With all the guys having the military names like Gen. Rection, Corp. Cajan, etc. we came up with "Major Gunns".
MP: Where did "Bombs Away" come from?
TB: When I was introduced in the M.I.A,. we were lined up in the ring, and it was just something I did. It was really over with the fans, so it took off. I actually had a move I did called "Rapid Fire" that never made it onto T.V.
MP: Really, why was that?
TB: Well, the move consisted of me ,basically rubbing a guys head quickly into my chest. Obvioulsy standards and practices frowned upon that and eventually I was told not to do it at all.
MP: During your time, with the M.I.A. you started training to learn how to wrestle. How was that experience?
TB: I've always been athletic, so I was up for the challenge. But it defintitely is a challenge. It's not something that just anyone can come in and do. A person has to be athletic and talented to make it. It's very rough.
MP: Did you get hurt at all?
TB: Yes. I ran the ropes a lot just to get used to it. I wound up completely black and blue on one side of my body. I also pulled a lat muscle. You really have to learn how to take bumps the right way. Another time a bunch of us were in the ring before a show and I practicing a back bump with Paisley. Because so many people were in the ring, there really wasn't the proper room we needed. Her feet ended up hitting my chest and I immediately slumped in the corner. I had to be taken to the emergency room. Luckily it was just some vertebrae that had been knocked around.
MP: You were getting over very well with the fans in the M.I.A. Then you were "captured" by Team Canada, and eventually became a full fledged heel with the group. Why did WCW chose to turn you, when you were so popular?
TB: Basically there were some people in WCW, who didn't like it one of the girls getting over so much. So they put me in Team Canada and made me a heel to try and take away my popularity.
MP: So how was your stint with that group?
TB: It was uncomfortable for me. I got a lot of E-mail from fans who were unhappy with it. I liked being the babyface with the M.I.A. and getting to act kind of goofy. Team Canada was very serious. I did like working with Lance Storm though, he was very nice.
MP: So where was the Team Canada thing going?
TB: Actually, the way that storyline was supposed to end, was that, I was going to be a spy for M.I.A. and going to go back to them. But I was released before that ever happened.
MP: How were you informed of the release?
TB: Right when Fusient was supposed buy WCW, there was a big meeting with Eric Bischoff. He didn't really tell anyone anything, and there was a lot of tension going around after that. Everyone was watching their back. AFTER the meeting, Johnny Ace called and said they were cutting back and were going to cut a lot of the girls. I thought cutting the girls was a very bad move, people want to see gorgoeus women in wrestling.
MP: How was Eric Bischoff to deal with in general?
TB: Actually he didn't really want to deal with the girls at all. It was an unwritten rule that the girls didn't talk to Eric. Anytime, I had an idea I would have to tell one of the guys and they would have to tell him.
MP: So he was distant?
TB: Very. Eric liked to rub elbows with the old time wrestlers. When he was at the shows, he stayed in his trailer if he was there at all. He never had anything new to bring to the table. He always wanted to to go back to the same wrestlers and the same storylines. Never anything new. He killed WCW with that thinking.
MP: What about Vince Russo?
TB: He was great. He always had a lot of ideas and would ask for mine. He was also very helpful when I started training at the Power Plant
MP: This brings us to to XPW, where you are currently working. How has the experiece been thus far?
TB: I have really been enjoying it. It's not as big as WCW, but it's a much better atomosphere. In WCW there were lots of powertrips by people trying to get things. In XPW, everyone is close and wants to work together. Rob (Black, XPW President) and Kevin (Kleinrock, XPW Vice President) are always willing to talk to the wrestlers and the girls.
MP: What are some of other big differences you've found working in XPW?
TB: Even though, it's small it's so much more organized. In WCW, there was were all these pre-tapes and pre-productions, before the shows...
MP: And they still messed it up!
TB: Really! In XPW they just have two montiters, a laptop keyboard, and a CD Player, but Kevin makes it all work. Then there's the merchandising. In WCW I was always trying to get them to make my dogtag souveniers. I got a lot of requests from fans for those. They always said they would do it,but never did. XPW jumped on it right away. They also want to make make a video for me. XPW is alot of fun and it's like a family.
MP: Currently, the WWF now owns the national wrestling market as they have acquired WCW. What are your thoughts on that?
TB: I think it's bad. There needs to be competiton out there to keep things fresh. It's not a good situation for the wrestlers. I know XPW would like to grow and I hope we do.
MP: Finally, is there anything you want to say to all your fans who might be reading this?
TB: I want to thank everyone for all their support. Through fitness modeling to now, you have all been wonderful. My fans really give me drive and help me get through some of the tough times. I'm working on a new sci-fi project, OB-1 which I hope everyone will enjoy. Thanks for all the E-mails, I really appreciate it. Without all my fans, I wouldn't be where I am, and I just want to give back as much as I can.