A dark tale of a man who came from a broken home, had fame and the married life, and lost it all in a rage of drugs and alcohol.
Cross Rhodes: Goldust, out of the Darkness, the latest World Wrestling Entertainment autobiography is a sad although in the end an inspirational story on the life and times of Dustin Rhodes’ rise to stardom in professional wrestling. The book starts off with Rhodes’ life growing up without his dad Dusty Rhodes due to his dad travelling on the road and divorcing his mom. The tales of abuse that his mom suffered is gut-wrenching and clearly left emotional scars with Rhodes.
Mainly the bio-book is on Rhodes’ professional wrestling career. Reconnecting with his father and getting schooled on the carnival-like environment that is pro wrestling. Rhodes is open on his young party persona, but does not go into great detail into his bar fights or his random girlfriends. While working with World Championship Wrestling, Rhodes meets the love of his life, Terri Runnels. His dad has a huge problem with her past and Rhodes ends up not talking to his dad for five years.
The fallout with his dad worked out perfectly as Vince McMahon Jr. came up with a character that allowed Rhodes to step out of his dad’s shadow. Goldust, an androgynous person that was considered bizarre, especially to Western society in the mid ‘90s that condemned gays. With gold face paint and in a gold suit, Rhodes became one of the most unique characters in all of sports entertainment.
Injuries, an addiction to painkillers, a marriage doomed to divorce, and extreme paranoia eventually cost Rhodes—he had Xanax withdrawals and had no idea when it was day or night. He had fights in front of his daughter. Rhodes did make another memorable run with WWE, but was released again and continued his drug problem.
Surprisingly Rhodes mentions his run with WWE’s competitor TNA Wrestling, when he wrestled as Black Reign. It was around this time that Rhodes realized he needed serious help or he was going to die. Fortunately, WWE’s rehab program quite possibly saved his life.
Doing his best in-ring work in years, and arguably ever, Goldust ends the autobiography by thanking those close to him that he calls his ‘angels.’ WWE fans will enjoy the insight he gives on current WWE stars and how WWE currently operates.
225 pages is short compared to previous WWE bios, but Rhodes’ pro wrestling life has been so exciting and impactful that you are not left disappointed if you’re primarily a wrestling fan. The writing is simple and will never be confused with Mick Foley’s books, but that does not take away from the life experiences that will shock and amaze.
Cross Rhodes: Goldust, out of the Darkness
by Dustin Rhodes and Marc Vandil
World Wrestling Entertainment books
Simon & Schuster
Releases Dec. 14, 2010