WWF PrimeTime Wrestling:
by Scrooge McSuck
Ultimate Challenge Special - March 25, 1990
- It's the precursor to the March to WrestleMania, as Primetime Wrestling is coming to us from the CN Tower in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, with Gorilla Monsoon, and your host, Bobby "The Brain" Heenan, handling all the studio segments. We've got a lot of action taking place, plus footage of the OFFICIAL contract signing for WrestleMania VI's main event. Heenan seems more concerned with how many tickets Gorilla Monsoon can hook him up with for WrestleMania than his team being in action later in the program. Vince Mcmahon and Jesse "The Body" Ventura are calling all the action, by the way. I think this copy is missing a WrestleMania Report and a recycled Brother Love Show from the previous weekends episode of Superstars, but everything else seems intact.
The Red Rooster vs. "Million $ Man" Ted Dibiase (w/ Virgil):
What a shame it must be to be remembered as the guy who walked around and acted like a giant rooster. Jesse Ventura makes a derogatory comment towards a heavy set fan who seems a little too into the Rooster. I guess that's the person who bought one of those god awful Red Rooster shirts. Surprising to see the Rooster still hanging around. He kind of just popped up at random, doing jobs once the calender flipped over to the new year. Dibiase is set to face Jake Roberts at WrestleMania VI, with the Million Dollar Belt up for grabs. Jesse Ventura annoys Vince by singing along with Dibiase's new theme music. Lockup, and Dibiase with a knee to the midsection, followed by forearms across the back. Whip to the corner is reversed, and Rooster takes Dibiase over with a back drop, then takes Dibiase's head off with a clothesline for a two count. Rooster with a side headlock takeover, but Dibiase with several counters for near falls. Irish whip, and Rooster with a back slide for a two count, then back to the side headlock. Dibiase escapes and tosses Rooster from the ring, but the Rooster pops back in and goes back to the headlock as we head back to the studio with Heenan and Monsoon. We return with Dibiase in control, and takes Rooster over with a suplex, excellently executed. Dibiase comes off the ropes with an elbow and covers for a two count. Rooster grabs a chinlock, and it's time for the match to continue dragging. Rooster fights back to his feet and takes Dibiase down with a back suplex. Rooster goes for a slam, but Dibiase shifts his weight to land on top for a two count. Dibiase takes the Rooster down with a clothesline, then drops a fist for another two count. Dibiase goes back to the chinlock. The Rooster escapes with elbows, then counters a knee with a roll up for a two count. Dibiase gabs the chinlock, but Rooster counters with a jaw buster. Rooster with a swinging neck breaker, and he's Cocking Up! Rooster with another jaw buster, followed by a series of roundhouse rights. Rooster ducks a clothesline and connects with an atomic drop, then comes off the ropes with a diving forearm. Dibiase catches Rooster going for it again and drops him throat first across the top rope. Dibiase with the Million Dollar Dream, and it's over at 8:04. Afterwards, Dibiase stuffs $100 down the Rooster's mouth ("Imagine all the chicken feed the Rooster can buy with that?") to add insult to injury. ** Good enough match, and surprised to see that the Rooster was allowed to look as competetive as he did.
- Bobby Heenan is watching out the windows and is allegedly watching the milkman coming by someones house after the husband left. The World Wrestling Federation is on Tour! Stops will be in Waco, TX on April 22nd, in Odessa, TX on April 22nd, Richmond, VA on April 21st, Providence, RI on April 21st, Detroit, MI on April 21st, Landover, MD on April 21st. Get tickets today for some great wrestling action!
- Big Boss Man vs. Boris Zhukov:
Another extended squash match, I'm guessing. I guess you could say Zhukov was better off than he was roughly a year earlier, with Nikolai Volkoff back. Now that I remember, the Bolsheviks will be in action at WrestleMania VI, taking on the Hart Foundation. Boss Man will see more substantial action, though, taking on his former partner, Akeem. In 1989, the Mega Powers exploded, but in 1990, the Twin Towers will explode! Zhukov attempts to sing the Soviet anthem, but it sucks and is quickly drowned out by the Boss Man's new music. Zhukov attacks before the bell and hammers away. Irish whip, and Boss Man with a back elbow, sending Zhukov out of the ring. Lockup into the corner, as we find out Slick, Akeem's manager, just picked up the contract of the Warlord. Back to the action, Boss Man with a clothesline and slam, followed by some mounted punches. Zhukov attempts to take a walk, but Boss Man forces him back in the ring. Boss Man whips Zhukov to the corner, but misses a charge. Zhukov goes to work on the arm, and I'm assuming that's gonna eat up the next few minutes. Boss Man with a mild comeback, but Zhukov continues to pound the arm, then applies the laziest resthold ever, the neck pinch. Boss Man counters with choking, and Zhukov counters back with a thumb to the eye. Boss Man fights back with rights, then takes Zhukov over with a back drop. Irish whip, and Boss Man with his signature sidewalk slam for the three count at 5:43. Mostly punchy-kicky, but it was watchable, at least. Afterwards, Boss Man introduces Zhukov to the night stick.
- Back to the studio, as Monsoon and Heenan discuss Boss Man's up-coming match at WrestleMania VI with Akeem. This friday, in USA Today, there's a special poster for the Ultimate Challenge and a special 900-number for the WWF Hotline. 1-900-909-WWF6, from March 28th through April 2nd.
Rhythm & Blues (w/ Jimmy Hart) vs. Jim Gorman & Jerry Monti:
Recycled match, pulled from SuperStars of Wrestling, and I think it's the only repeat match on the broadcast. Jesse Ventura questions if Robert Goulet will be reading the words to the national anthem off a sheet of paper. Funny, since the story behind the show is that he did have the words on the jumbo screen for fans to "sing along" to the Canadian national anthem, but rumor has it that he was nervous he would forget the words, and insisted on it. Poor Valentine finally has the jet black hair here. Comments from Rhythm & Blues, and they will be debuting Honka Honka Honky Love at WrestleMania VI. They work Gorman over, doing nothing much of note and making frequent tags. Whip to the corner, but Gorman gets a few shots in before tagging out to Monti, who is easily handled with double teaming. Double back suplex and Honky covers for the three count at 1:50. That seriously was the finishing move? Valentine doing a poor Honkytonk Man impersonation is just tragic to watch.
Things pick up after the match, though. Honkytonk Man gets on the microphone and threatens to sing. Suddenly, the Bushwhackers, Luke and Butch, make their way to the ring. Or as Ventura calls them, the Marching Morons. I prefer the latter, myself. I guess they're coming to the ring for the next match, but things never make it that far, as the Bushwhackers go after Jimmy Hart, allowing Valentine to blast Butch with the guitar. Then Honky and Hammer double team Luke, and Honky gives him a taste of his guitar. For this brief moment, the Honkytonk Man became my favorite wrestler of all time. This is a grade-B ass-whooping put on the Bushwhackers, but don't worry. I'm sure they will get their revenge. Probably at WrestleMania VI.
- We head to the Event Center, with host Sean Mooney. WrestleMania VI will be taking place on April 1st at the Skydome in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Featured on the card, Hercules, cuts a promo on the undefeated monster known as the (No Longer Canadian) Earthquake. Hercules really fell pretty hard down the ladder shortly into his babyface run. Also, the Bolsheviks take on the former champions, the Hart Foundation. I wonder where Nikolai Volkoff went for all of 1989. Yes, that's more concerning to me than this nonsensical promo. Oh, and Zhukov blows his lines.
Dusty Rhodes (w/ Sapphire) vs. "Macho King" Randy Savage (w/ Queen Sherri):
For once, Gorilla's phrase "a main event anywhere in the country" sounds like a legitimate statement in regards to this combination. At WrestleMania VI, we'll see the "first ever" mixed tag team match, as Rhodes teams with Sapphire to take on Savage and Sherri. Rhodes starts things off with an elbow from behind, but Savage doesn't take kindly to this and attempts to go after Sapphire, without success. Whip to the corner, and Rhodes waddles in and gets hit on the gut with a series of jabs. Rhodes no-sells and puts Savage down with elbows. Rhodes tosses Savage over the top rope, all while mouthing off to Sherri. Savage rams Rhodes into the ring post, then comes off the top rope with a double axehandle for a two count. Savage applies a sleeper hold, but Dusty gets funky like a monkey. Rhodes hits the ropes, but runs into a knee from the Macho King. Rhodes rolls out of the ring, allowing Sherri to get a cheap shot in. Rhodes no-sells Savage kicking him in the head, but Sherri KO's him with a purse shot across the back. BEACHED WHALE ALERT! Rhodes continues focusing his attention on Sherri, allowing Savage to maintain control. Back in the ring, and Savage drops a knee for a two count. Back outside again, and Savage with another double axehandle. We return to the studio for a commercial. Back to the action, and Savage grabs the ring bell. Savage to the top rope, and he rings Dusty's bell. That only gets two, though. Didn't they do the same spot at WrestleMania VI? Rhodes starts Funkin-Up again and catches Savage coming off the ropes with an elbow. Rhodes with his usual clobberin', but a rake of the eyes keeps him back. Savage to the top, but Rhodes catches him and tosses him into the corner. Outside the ring, Sherri levels Sapphire with a right, making her my favorite womens wrestler of all-time. Sapphire yanks Sherri off the apron and kinda push punches Sherri down. Savage heads outside, but Rhodes follows. Sherri grabs Rhodes from behind, but we get heel miscommunication. The action spills into the ring, and Savage gets Disqualified at 8:13. Sapphire tosses Sherri around by her hair a few times. I guess that means she has the advantage against a former Women's Champion. Match was garbage, as usual. Savage, during his Macho King era, really put on a lot of stinkers, and this feud with Rhodes was the poster-child for that theory.
- It's time for the official contract signing for the Ultimate Challenge! President Jack Tunney is sitting in between WWF Champion Hulk Hogan and Intercontinental Champion the Ultimate Warrior. Hogan is decked out in his usual garb of bandana and pre-cut t-shirt, and Warrior is wearing a leather jacket and has his face painted. You have to wonder if he was insane enough to go out in public like that. Hogan signs, all while cutting a promo about training, saying prayers, and taking a needle in the ass will help him be victorious at WrestleMania. Then the Warrior does his "Hulk Ho-Gun!" ranting before signing. And that's it. No brawl, no cheap shots, but a couple of random, weird close ups, as if they were talking into the camera, and not sitting in front of each other.
"Rugged" Ronnie Garvin vs. Earthquake (w/ Jimmy Hart):
Speaking of people past the point of being useful, we've got Ron Garvin, who pretty much ended his WWF career the second his long running, hardly memorable program with Greg Valentine ended. Earthquake had recently dropped the Canadian part of his name, and is preparing to squash Hercules at WrestleMania VI. Quake starts off running the ropes and shaking the ground. They feel each other out, and Earthquake drops Garvin with a shoulder block. Garvin responds with his fists of steel and stomping of the feet. Garvin tries a go-behind, ducks an elbow, and slaps Earthquake across the chest. Earthquake with a choke lift and slams Garvin down, then follows with more choking. Garvin fights back and scoops the leg, but Quake clubs him across the back of the head and stomps away. Earthquake winds up, but misses an elbow drop, allowing Garvin to cover for a two count. Garvin rakes the eyes and pounds away across the chest. Garvin to the top rope and he puts Earthquake on one knee with a double axehandle. Garvin goes for the Sharpshooter, but Earthquake easily fights him off. Whip to the corner, and Earthquake misses a charge. Garvin does a school boy trip of Earthquake, then heads to the top again. Quake catches him this time, and plants Garvin with a powerslam. Quake stomps around, hits the ropes, and drops ass on Garvin for the three count at 4:59. After the match, Earthquake gives him an after-shock not once, but twice. As much as I poked fun at Garvin, he actually made this match quite watchable, with his unique style and just trying to wrestler Earthquake. Garvin does the stretcher job like a champ.
The Rockers vs. The Colossal Connection (Tag Team Champions) (w/ Bobby Heenan):
(Shawn Michaels & Marty Jannetty vs. Andre The Giant & Haku)
Back in the studio, Gorilla Monsoon plants the seeds for WrestleMania VI, questioning why Haku does all the work in the matches, and Andre only comes in when he feels like it. It sounds almost like Monsoon was setting up Haku as the babyface, and compares instances of Hercules and the Red Rooster as times when Heenan mistreated his proteges. This is Non-Title, by the way. The Connection defend the titles against Demoilition, who are looking to three-peat, and the Rockers are scheduled to face the Orient Express. Haku and Andre attack from behind, but are victims to a pair of dropkicks. Andre manages to get caught in the ropes in record time from a double dropkick. Haku hammers away on Michaels, then slaps on a headlock. Andre frees himself, and KO's Shawn with a headbutt. Jannetty gets the tag in, and comes off the ropes with a cross nbody press for a two count. Jannetty works the arm, but Andre tags in and slaps the coke out of Jannetty's nose. Andre manhandles Jannetty and drops ass on him, and that first one looked like he really did put all his weight into it. Haku tags back in, and connects with a back breaker for a two count. Irish whip, and Michaels tags in for a double hip toss and elbow drop. Jannetty hits the ropes, but Andre nails him from behind. Michaels tries his luck and gets tossed over the top rope for his troubles. Haku hits Jannetty with his reverse crescent kick, and Andre drops ass on him again. Suddenly, Demolition (Ax and Smash) hit the ring and clean house of the Tag Team Champions, Disqualifying the Rockers at 3:37 in the process. Not much of a match, but seeing Andre handle the Rockers like a couple of jobbers was pretty gun to watch.
- We return to Bobby Heenan and Gorilla Monsoon for one last time, discussing the conclussion of the match. Heenan wonders why they named the city after the Lone Ranger's horse "Tonto". Heenan has his envelope full of tickets, but Monsoon is sure that those tickets won't make it to the hands of anyone Heenan has promised them to.
Promotional consideration paid for by the following: Certs Mini-Mints: Cool, Clean Taste! Extra Strength Rolaids! Jonny Cat Premium Cat Liter! Fruit Stripe Bubble Gum! Loses it's flavor after 5 seconds!
Just in case you forgot, WrestleMania VI is taking place on April 1st, and the Ultlimate Challenge will have both the WWF and Intercontinental Championships on the line. The discussion seems to be more about the WWF Championship rather than the Intercontinental strap. I guess it just seems a little obvious that the lesser champion was going over, back in the day when you could use that kind of logic in wrestling. One last shill for the 1-900 Hotline and PPV information for next sunday from Toronto.
Final Thoughts: For what it's worth, a fun hour and a half. The WWF from 1989-1990 was one of my favorite time frames for wrestling, and WrestleMania VI really holds a dear spot in my heart. Only one match had a direct connection to the PPV, as everything else seemed more like warm up/squash matches for more established superstars. There wasn't a whole lot of filler, and the matches were kept reasonably short to make them more watchable. Not the greatest, but definitely a fine way to establish excitement heading into the biggest PPV of the year.
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