Every Man Has His Price
The True Story of Wrestling's Million-Dollar Man
Ted DiBiase (with Kirstie McLellan)
Synopsis: The first autobiography of WWE Hall of Famer Ted DiBiase.
"So, are you ready to hear my idea?" Vince taunted.
"Yes sir, I am," I answered.
"Ok, here it is." Leaning in toward me, he explained his concept. "I want to create a character who is so filthy rich that he throws money around like it's nothing." He began to smile as he continued. "He is the kind of guy who can buy anyone or anything. I see him as a man who lives by the motto, Every man has his price."
By now, I was smiling. I liked where this was going.
"I see the full visual effect," Vince went on. "You will travel all over in fine first class. There will be a limousine at every hotel and venue to take you where you need to go. You'll always have a wad of money on you. We'll find you a man to be your personal bodyguard and valet."
"This sounds fabulous!" I exclaimed.
"Ted, you're going to be the hottest, most hated heel in all of wrestling," Vince added, his eyes sparkling.
Okay, so just to clarify - this is the first biography of The Million Dollar Man Ted DiBiase, not the recent WWE-published one titled The Million Dollar Man. Got all that? Awesome.
DiBiase hooks you in early, with the story of his (adopted) father Mike DiBiase, who died in the ring at a relatively young age. Despite a promising career in college football,Terry Funk and other veterans encouraged the younger DiBiase to try his hand in the ring.
Off to a tremendous start in the Mid-South and related territories, DiBiase was recruited by Vince McMahon and became the larger-than-life Million Dollar Man character that would eventually help end Hulk Hogan's landmark first WWF title reign. Following a lengthy stint in New York, DiBiase went to Japan, came back to the WWF (this time as an announcer and manager) and finally jumped to WCW, where (as of the time this book was published) he was the figurehead financial backer of the nWo.
Then we get to the "re-discovered religion and became a preacher" portion of his life. Folks, I am not a religious man by any stretch, so undoubtedly, a lot of this is just lost on me. But I can still appreciate the fact that DiBiase wanted to find peace with his life. Good on him for that.
But at the same time, DiBiase hints at the "personal demons" he had struggled with, without actually divulging WHAT said demons were. As a result, you're left wondering what exactly happened to him.
Now... I completely respect DiBiase's decision to keep his private life private, but then, why write a book about your "true" life story? You know? The contrast between his disclosure and, say, William Regal's is like night and day.
Overall Rating: Bowling-Shoe Ugly. Maybe his newer book plays out better, but this one had tons of gaps and certainly didn't make me feel like a million bucks afterwards.