|Everybody loves Head..and Al Snow!
by Robin Shurtz
In a world of oversized (and often overstuffed) supergladiators, you gotta love Al Snow. He is solid and chiseled, but without the exaggerated musculature of Triple H or Buff Bagwell. Al's physique seems to come from hard work, and hard work alone. Whether he is enjoying a major pop or relegated to the JOB Squad, Al keeps up his physical appearance and gives 100 percent. He's a constant challenge to other grapplers, and flexible enough to change with the times, knowing when a formula or character has run its course.
Born Allen Sarven in Lima, Ohio, Al entered the WWF late in 1995 using the names Shinobi and Avatar. Neither persona caught on. Then came Leif Cassidy. As a hybrid 1970s rock-and-roller and wrestler, Leif gained popularity as one of the nerdiest wrestlers (an element later used on creating Al Snow). Leif joined Marty Janetty in the New rockers, a tag-team meant to capitalize on the success of Janetty's original pairing with Shawn Michaels. The duo fizzled, but Al's strength is to learn from mistakes and move on.
He joined ECW and established his persona of Al Snow--and his advisor, Head. Wrestling fans responded big time-but the misguided saw a mean-spirited, sexist slant to Head, which merely underscored their ignorance. Feeling manipulated by misadvice at WWF, Snow embraced Head as the ultimate 'empty talking head'. After riding his newfound fame to a championship spot in ECW, Al returned to WWf in triumph--with his character intact, and also as leader of the JOB Squad--whose signature line, "Pay Me or Pin Me" (?), was another sly reference to his misuse as a jobber by the WWF.
Throughout his many incarnations, Al Snow's persistence has been unequalled. He may have dyed his hair and changed costumes more times than Cher, but his mat style remains fresh, and he's kept an amazing sense of humour and irony. If you're looking for a guy to admire, I say: Look no further than Al Snow.