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An Interview with Tough Enough 2's "Danimal" - Part 1by Mike DeGeorge -- 10/08/2002
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Danny "the Danimal" Carney was one of the most popular members of the Tough Enough 2 cast, and was considered by many (including yours truly) to be among the early favorites. Unfortunately, the judges did not agree and he was cut in the fourth episode. In this exclusive interview with RealityNewsOnline, Danny reveals his thoughts on his fellow contestants, ponders why he was cut, and fills us in on what he's been doing since the show.
RealityNewsOnline: Tell us a little about yourself to start.
Danny: I'm 22 years old and I go to school at the University of New Hampshire, where I'll be graduating this December. While not in school, I live in northern Virginia with my family. I've played every sport you can think of, with the heaviest concentration on ice hockey (I'm a goalie, I've heard we're a strange breed), which I've been playing for eight years. I've also been weight training pretty regularly since high school. I've always been a sports-oriented kid, and I've been watching pro wrestling since kindergarten. Ever since I've been in college, I've thought that being a WWE wrestler would be the best job in the world, and only recently has it seemed attainable.
RNO: What are you studying in school?
Danny: I'm majoring in sociology and anthropology, but I've studied everything from biology to kinesiology since I've been at UNH.
RNO: Are you a fan of reality television?
Danny: Yeah, I'm a reality TV fan. The reality shows I watch most are Tough Enough, Real World, Fear, and all those cheesy dating shows (Blind Date, Dismissed). I was hooked on American Idol. However, I'm much more a wrestling fan than a reality TV fan.
RNO: Did you watch Tough Enough 1?
Danny: I loved TE1, watched it religiously. In fact, one time after watching an episode, I said to my sisters "I can't wait to be on Tough Enough 2." They just laughed at me, go figure. I find that pretty funny.
RNO: What did you think of the first TE?
Danny: Honestly, I thought it was the most unique concept for a show I'd ever seen. I thought it was great, finding a group of people who (supposedly) had these dreams of being pro wrestlers, and then sticking them with a group of famous, established wrestlers to TEACH them what it meant to be a wrestler. Surprise superstar visits, the reality of pain, following the WWF on the road… I loved every bit of it.
RNO: You seemed to be a big wrestling fan on the show. How long have you been a fan?
Danny: I've been a huge fan for a long time. As a kid, I had every action figure you could name, posters, clothes, wrestling buddies, a subscription to WWF magazine, cassette tapes of entrance music… you name it, I had it. I stopped following it a bit through high school, but picked it back up big time in college. The business has always fascinated me. I can't get enough.
RNO: Who are your favorite wrestlers, angles, matches, that sort of thing?
Danny: My favorite wrestlers are Kurt Angle and Lance Storm. Of course, I'm partial to my trainers now too. I don't have any specific angles or matches that I like more than most. You put the right guys together, and a standard match on RAW can be just as exciting as a TLC [Editor's Note: Tables, Ladders, and Chairs.] match at a PPV [Pay Per View].
RNO: What made you try out for TE?
Danny: I tried out for TE because, plain and simple, I wanted to be a wrestler. I had planned on going to a wrestling school one of these days, but who better to teach you than the best in the business? I don't see why any aspiring wrestler wouldn't try out for TE, it really is the greatest opportunity in the world. It wasn't because it seemed like "the easy way in" or "a free ride." It seemed like getting the best training in the world, and who wouldn't want that?
RNO: Did you try out for TE1?
Danny: I would have tried out for TE1, but I came down with a horrible case of mono just as they were accepting audition tapes, I was in bed for weeks. Even if they did invite me to NYC for in-person auditions, I wouldn't have been able to go. I was pretty disappointed at the timing.
RNO: Did you know what you were going to do in the ring during the Casting Special? You won a lot of people over, including me, with your "let me entertain you" performance. Was that the plan?
Danny: I had a pretty good idea what was expected of auditioners in the ring after watching TE1 and seeing a couple of people audition before me in Vegas. I didn't think to dance in the ring until, literally, a couple of minutes before I got in. I thought to myself, "there are so many people here, I really need to do something to stand out or I'll blend right into the crowd." I've been told that I'm pretty funny when I dance, so I figured I'd go in the ring, cut a promo, then start dancing. When I started dancing, none of the judges said anything (I heard some chuckling), so I kept going and going. I ended up dancing for about three minutes.1 2 Next-->
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