Daniels’ parents introduced him to comic books, but as a seventh grade is when he started collecting. He enjoyed “The Uncanny X-Men” by writers John Byrne and Chris Claremont under Marvel Comics and “The New Teen Titans” written by Marv Wolfman and artistry by George Perez via DC Comics.
“Those were my two favorite books at the time, and those stories and those characters are what got me into collecting the books and trying t keep them in good condition,” Daniels said, “and over the years it’s been something I’ve stuck with, reading those characters, Wolverine, X-Men. I’ve been a Marvel guy ever since then. The past couple of years I’ve read just about everything Marvels put out. It’s rare if I’m disappointed by anything Marvel does. It’s really good stuff to read and be entertained by.”
Daniels owns “Wolverine” No.1 and “The New Mutants” No.87 with the first appearance of Cable.
Comic book characters on the big screen is very common these days.
“It brings new eyes to comic books,” Daniels said. “When ‘Iron Man’ the movie came out and “Captain America” the movie came out, it brought new eyes to the source material. Anything that’s going to help the comic book store to live and thrive and survive is a positive.”
Daniels enjoyed the first “Iron Man” movie, the first “Spider Man” movie and original “X-Men” flick. He attends comic cons, most notably San Diego and New York where, in awe, he thanked comic book writer and former artist Brian Bendis (Marvel’s “All New X-Men” and “Uncanny X-Men”). Via the Internet, Daniels recently became friends with artist Ryan Stegman (Marvel’s “She-Hulk,” “X-23” and “Spider-Man”).
Comic books and pro wrestling are a good mix. Some pro wrestling characters are influenced by comic book heroes and villains. Larger than life personas.
Daniels brought some books to TNA shows, but now with technology the IPad is an easier and safer way to show books. Frankie Kazarian, Gunner, Homicide, Rob Van Dam, Rosita, Samoa Joe, Velvet Sky, Eric Young are some from the TNA roster (present and past) interested in comic books.
“I’ve gotten a lot of guys interested in different Marvel stuff and tried to get them involved in the different comic book titles I read,” Daniels said, “so they can go and enjoy it themselves.”
Daniels is just starting to encourage his kids to read comic books.
“When I was their age, I was reading comic books, and it helped broaden my vocabulary. I’m hoping that’s going to be the case for them, to help them read at a higher level than they are now...and become smart #%^^#& like their dad.”
The name Bad Influence is credited to Frankie Kazarian. When he first wrestled in 1998 that became his tag team moniker.
“Frankie always liked the name, and I thought it fit with what was going on with us at the time. So we started calling ourselves that before the company did.
“We are the ‘Bad Influence’ of TNA.
“We decided that’s who we are, and we kept pushing it and pushing it, and finally everybody [in TNA] hopped on board with it.”