“The answer is there was no show yesterday. That’s the answer.”
That was the answer given more than a week ago when subscribers
of the popular WrestlingObserver.com/F4Wonline.com first started clamoring for their Thursday dose of OBSERVOR segments. But it wasn’t to be. Todd Martin was MIA.
For months, Martin, who co-hosted the Thursday edition of F4Daily along with Bryan Alvarez (part owner of the site along with Dave Meltzer) had been recapping old back issues of Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer (originally titled Wrestling Observor, according to old copies Martin had come into possession of). It was this segment, along with his regular victories over a clueless Alvarez in their frequent “prediction game” where each would guess the winners of pending mixed martian arts contests, that had made the show so popular among paying members.
So why had the show suddenly disappeared from the schedule with little to no reason offered by way of notice, or explanation?
The answer has to do with a longstanding rivalry between two site personalities—both lawyers—who simply hadn’t cared for each other in years, maybe even ever, which suddenly, and without warning, had bubbled to a head again in the form of a heated message board exchange.
On Friday, April 3rd, Martin would be seen to refer to his long time adversary, and occasional podcast host for the site Michael Coughlin as a “cunt” in a thread concerning Ronda Rousey, and whether she had any sort of official deal with WWE after her surprise appearance along side the Rock in an apparent showdown with Triple H and Stephanie McMahon at this year’s WrestleMania which had taken place several days prior.
Coughlin would respond with a terse screed that reads, in part, “you [Martin] aren’t half as smart as you tell everyone and you’re twice as dumb as you come across.”
After referring to Martin as a “fuckwad” and closing with an all-caps post script reminding Martin that his mother was fat, Martin replied, “my mother is dead, you sociopath.”
That was Martin’s last post, and last appearance as part of the site.
Coughlin would go on to post for another 4 hours before he, himself, would also disappear as well.
It was a precarious time for the Board, and rumors swirled aplenty that the place was to be shut down. New moderators were installed, and the site scrambled to restore order and a sense of calm that, quite frankly, never lasts thanks to a lasting sense of irreverence Alvarez himself once championed from his patrons.
But those days, it would seem, are longer gone than ever. As, too, are the days of Martin on the Thursday F4Daily.
After keeping his paid subscribers in the dark for over a week, Alvarez finally commented on the situation by announcing that the show with Martin was on “an indefinite hiatus.”
Those close to the matter have indicated that Martin doesn’t want the details of his departure discussed publicly, and doesn’t want it to be “a thing.” Ironically, in their botched efforts to adhere to Todd’s wishes, it has become “a thing” with more than 100 pages of posts across several different threads devoted to getting to the bottom of Martin’s disappearance.
For his part, Martin has remained cryptic as well, making one vague comment on Twitter:
“I hope people who have tweeted, texted and reached out on FB know that my lack of response isn’t meant as a sign of disrespect. All in time.”
When asked if Martin had quit or been fired from the site, Dave Meltzer finally weighed in on the topic, thanks to the #ToddWatch hashtag on Twitter, saying:
“Todd asked me out of friendship not to talk about it. But the answer right now is neither.”
Sources close to the matter have also said that it isn’t out of the realm of possibility that Todd would return, leading us to believe that his exile is in some ways self-inflicted, and not something forced upon him by the site.
Sheet Sandwich is treating this as a developing story, and expect to have more as it continues to unfold.