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Getting Rowdy: The Unreleased Matches of Roddy Piper (Disc 1)

by Scrooge McSuck

Roddy Piper

- Following along the lines of the recent Randy Savage and Shawn Michaels DVD sets, here we go with another set dedicated to Roddy Piper, featuring matches and promos that were never released on DVD. Once again, people assume "Unreleased" means "Dark Matches", and that would be incredible, but too much of something becomes boring. At least we're not getting the same old stuff that was recycled year after year like they were a decade ago.

Roddy Piper vs. Jay Youngblood:

From the October 14th, 1981 episode of Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling. Based on commentary, Roddy Piper was involved in a feud with Wahoo McDaniel, enlisting the services of Abdullah the Butcher. Piper stalls a little before getting in the ring. Lockup to the ropes and they trade palm strikes across the chest. Piper with a waist-lock takedown, but Youngblood escapes from underneath and rides Piper around the canvas. They go to a knuckle-lock, with Piper in firm control (pun intended). Youngblood counters and takes Piper over with a headlock. Piper with a head-scissors, and we're back to a neutral position. Youngblood counters a hammerlock with a drop toe hold and works the knee. I'm just waiting for Piper to do something cheap, other than taking a powder outside of the ring. Whip to the ropes and Piper with a shoulder tackle, followed by a sunset flip for two. Piper with a back breaker for two. He sends Youngblood into the corner and picks him up in a bear-hug. Youngblood with a headbutt to loosen the grip and sends Piper face-first into the turnbuckle. Piper with a thumb to the throat to cut off the comeback. He plants Youngblood with a slam and drops the elbow for two. Youngblood fires back with rights. Piper avoids a slam and counters with a sleeper. The arm drops twice, but Youngblood has enough to get a foot on the ropes, forcing a break. Piper with a delayed suplex, but he sells the impact himself, hitting his head on the canvas. Youngblood recovers first and covers for two. Whip to the ropes and Youngblood with a diving body press for two. They trade rights until Piper thumbs the eyes. Youngblood returns fire, going for Piper's eyes, and lights him up with palm strikes. Piper goes for a slam but Youngblood counters with an inside cradle for two. Whip to the ropes and a shoulder tackle knocks both men down. Youngblood with more rights and chops for two. Piper with the inside cradle for two. Knee lift for two. Youngblood counters a suplex with an O'Connor Roll for two. They do another double knock-down and it's a Time Limit Draw at 10:50 (even Caudle calls out the timekeeper on that). Post-match, Piper attacks Youngblood from behind and works him over until Tommy Young helps restore order. Really good TV match with the expected non-finish. ***1/2 (1 for 1)

Roddy Piper & Ole Anderson vs. Mike Davis & Buddy Landell:

From the November 18th, 1981 episode of Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling. Piper is the reigning Mid-Atlantic Heavyweight Champion, while Ole is strutting around with his half of the World Tag Team Championship (held with brother/cousin Gene). Piper starts with Landell. Lockup and Piper with a waist-lock takedown. Landell gets some strikes in on Anderson before tagging in Davis. Ole quickly sweeps the legs and puts a boot across the throat. Piper with a short right hand and front face-lock. Davis fights free and slams Piper, but that's the extent of his offensive flurry. Piper and Ole take turns with a chin-lock. Ole with a snap mare out of the corner and applies a head-scissors. Piper with more right hands, followed by some choking. Landell gets the tag back in (have I mentioned this is pre-bleach blonde look Buddy?) and runs wild for about 15-seconds. Anderson finally cuts him off. Piper with a snap mare and knee drop for two. Whip and Landell with a sunset flip for two. Davis in to get worked over again. Piper with a back suplex to finish at 6:40. Post-match, Jake Roberts comes out and takes shots at both Ole and Piper, who proceed to cut a promo. Just a squash match that dragged. (1 for 2)

Roddy Piper vs. Tony Anthony:

From the February 20th, 1982 episode of Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling. Anthony would go on to regional success as "the Dirty White Boy", and a cup of coffee in the twilight of his career with the WWF as T.L. Hopper. Lockup and Piper with a side headlock into a hammerlock. Anthony counters but Piper quickly takes him to the canvas. Ham-n-Egger Tony Anthony is something to look at if you're only familiar with him at the height of his career. They trade rights, with Anthony getting the better of it until Piper gives him a shot to the throat. Snap mare out of the corner and Piper with a stomp across the face. Piper with a big knee lift before hooking a modified chin-lock. Anthony with another hope spot, but all it does is piss Piper off. He aggressively lays into Anthony with clubbing strikes. Whip to the ropes and Anthony with a sunset flip for two. Piper with more rights and a back suplex for three at 4:42. We cut away from a post-match promo for reasons unknown. Just punchy-kicky, but I was surprised Piper gave as much as he did. (1 for 3)

- And now we move onto Piper's run with the World Wrestling Federation. From January 26th, 1984, it's Piper's Pit with "Mr. Wonderful" Paul Orndorff. Piper says he sent invites to all the Superstars of the WWF and only Paul Orndorff had the courage to come on the show. Piper buries Hulk Hogan and says that Paul Orndorff is the complete athlete and he has everything working for him. Orndorff kisses up to Piper, telling him he needs a manager that as great an athlete as he is, and smarter than the bums in attendance, paving the way for their on-air relationship. Heels patting each other on the back is always fun, but with all the best Pit segments already on the other Piper DVD, they have to dig deep for segments to feature here. (1 for 4)

Roddy Piper & Paul Orndorff vs. S.D. Jones & Jose Luis Rivera:

From the February 14th, 1984 episode of "All-American Wrestling", according to the commentary of Gorilla Monsoon and Gene Okerlund. The crowd serenades Orndorff with chants of "Paula." This ring announcer takes FOREVER to get us to the opening bell. I think it's worth repeating that Piper was brought in to be a manager first, and wrestler second, but dang if he wasn't such a hot ticket that the original concept was out the window in short order. Piper and Jones start after 2-minutes of Piper milking things. Piper goes for a headlock, but Jones slips free. Monsoon comically says the fans are hanging from the rafters as we get a wide shot of the Gymnasium these shows were taped from. Back inside, Jones grabs a headlock. Rivera in to pick up where Jones left off. Piper with a back suplex to break the hold. Damn, if this were Mid-Atlantic, he'd be dead on a stretcher. Orndorff with a whip and elbow, followed by an elbow drop for two. Rivera escapes a chin-lock but Orndorff remains in control. Rivera counters a suplex by landing on top of Orndorff for a two-count. Whip and Piper and Orndorff with a double elbow. Rivera with rights, but Piper lays into him with a flurry of blows. Piper with the big knee lift, and Orndorff finishes with the Piledriver at 7:57. Another squash that went way too long. (1 for 5)

Roddy Piper vs. S.D. Jones:

From the March 27th, 1984 episode of Championship Wrestling. Yes, two S.D. Jones matches on one DVD. UNRELEASED! I'm surprised they are using these matches from the WWF, with Mel Phillips clearly at ringside as the acting attendant. Piper teases a handshake, but that wasn't going to happen. Lockup to the ropes and a clean break from Piper. WHA?! Piper with a takedown, but Jones fights free, earning a less-than-genuine handshake. A knuckle-lock quickly turns into a wrist-lock trade-off. Piper with a cheap shot in the corner to take control. Whip and Jones with a sunset flip for two. Piper thumbs the throat to regain control. I'm starting to see a formula Piper used for his matches. Jones escapes a chin-lock with elbows and rocks Piper with a headbutt. Jones takes him across the ring with a hip toss and kicks Piper questionably low. Jones with an atomic drop, sending the crowd into a frenzy. Whip to the ropes and Piper surprises Jones with a swinging neck breaker for three at 4:44. Decent enough to earn a point. (2 for 6)

Roddy Piper vs. "Superfly" Jimmy Snuka:

From the July 7th, 1984 card held at the Philadelphia Spectrum. Mel Phillips is the ring announcer here, but the intros are quickly interrupted by Snuka, running in and attacking Piper, sending him out of the ring after a series of headbutts. Snuka follows, slamming Piper into the ring apron and ringside table. Piper begs off, but Snuka grabs him by the hair and drags him back into the ring, over the top rope, and drops him face-first to the canvas. Whip to the ropes and the smack heads. Piper is out on his feet while Snuka picks himself off the canvas. Whip, Piper avoids a chop and decks Snuka with a right hand. Snuka no-sells being rammed into the turnbuckle and lights Piper up with chops. He comes off the ropes with a diving body press, taking both men over the top rope. Snuka seemed to take the worst of that and gets slammed face-first into the steps. Back inside, Piper with a big knee lift for two as Okerlund points out that Red Bastien is the special referee for the match. Snuka blocks a right hand, grabs a handful of hair, of unloads with right hands. Piper with a block of his own and deliberately straddles Snuka across the top rope for the ultra-cheap Disqualification at 4:40. Bastien takes a comical bump trying to break things up as Piper continues putting the boots to Snuka. The Superfly starts no-selling again, sending Piper back to the locker room. I think the feud between these two is far from over. Incredibly disappointing finish. (2 for 7)

- Roddy Piper promo. He insists he's a nice guy, but there's wenches and goofballs trying to take advantage of you. He's promoting the match between the Fabulous Moolah and Wendi Richter, dubbed "The Brawl to End it All." He says he wouldn't be surprised if something happened to Richter and Cyndi Lauper's throats. This segues to Piper reading a letter, allegedly from the child of Jimmy Snuka, begging for mercy, because he stays up all night crying. That last 30-seconds is glorious, prime Piper (3 for 8).

- Roddy Piper promo from February 16th, 1985. He says he's an equal opportunist because he put the boots to Cyndi Lauper at Madison Square Garden. If you watched the weekly programming at the time, they MILKED the hell out of the whole angle, teasing footage for weeks before finally delivering the goods. He enjoyed smacking around Lou Albano and slamming that wimp David Wolff. I don't want to know how much drugs were pumping through him for these promos. (4 for 9)

- From March 9th, 1985, we get hype for some local cards. Roddy Piper is scheduled to face Jimmy Snuka in Erie. He pulls up a trash can and says he's looking at the life story of Jimmy Snuka. Unlike Snuka, he was never beaten mercilessly or humiliated on national television. He just rambles a bit and that's all there was. (4 for 10)

- From the March 30th, 1985 episode of Championship Wrestling. It's Piper's Pit along with Orndorff and Bob Orton, doing one last hard-sell for WrestleMania. He has a "Hot Seat" for Hogan and Mr. T, a toilet seat. They offer the poster of Hogan and Mr. T bananas and crack eggs on them. Piper says these are the heroes people look up to. Orton says his arm is still hurting as he uses the cast to knock over the entire set. Thankfully, WWE edited out Orndorff calling Mr. T a "monkey." Just a basic segment. (4 for 11)

Roddy Piper vs. "Mr. Wonderful" Paul Orndorff:

From the July 20th, 1985 card held at the Capital Centre in Landover, MD. Piper and Orton blamed Orndorff for their loss at WrestleMania, sending him on his way to a babyface turn that culminated in one of the best heel runs of the era. Piper meets Orndorff coming in, putting the boots to him. Orndorff quickly fires back, sending Piper out of the ring. Orndorff follows, ramming Piper into the apron and connecting with an atomic drop. Back inside, Orndorff comes off the top with a double axe-handle and slams Piper face-first to the canvas. Orndorff cranks on a wristlock as Piper slaps him around. Piper sends him to the corner, but Orndorff hangs on to the hold and lays in with rights and lefts. Whip to the corner and Orndorff with a punt to the midsection. Piper cries foul, but the referee isn't buying it. Piper finally cuts Orndorff off with a thumb to the eyes. Orndorff goes back on offense but meets the knees going for a splash. Piper with a knee lift and flurry of rights. He tosses Orndorff through the ropes, onto the ringside table. Piper decks Orndorff with a telephone and gets into it with a ringside fan. Back inside, Orndorff surprises Piper with a sunset flip (and yank of the tights) for two. Whip and Piper grabs a bearhug. Okerlund puts Piper over for being a hell of a wrestler despite his arrogance. Orndorff smacks the ears to break the hold and connects with an enzuigiri. They take it to the arena floor, again. Orndorff slams Piper's face into the table and clobbers him overhead with the table! Back inside, Orndorff with a knee lift and elbow drop, followed by a suplex. Orndorff goes for a bearhug, but Piper fights out of it. He charges and gets sent over the top rope. Orndorff follows, coming off the apron with an elbow. They brawl into the crowd and we get a Double Count-Out at 10:45. Good match with the traditional Piper non-finish. *** (5 for 12)

- From the August 31st, 1985 episode of Championship Wrestling (2 days after I was born), it's Piper's Pit with Andre the Giant... or it's supposed to be. Piper tears up a WWF Magazine that has an article focusing on Andre, then smacks around an Andre LJN action figure. As soon as Andre lumbers near the set, Piper does a 180, stroking the doll lovingly as a chair comes flying across the screen. Piper blows his nose on an Andre t-shirt before running like the chicken sh*t heel he was. Kinda all over the place, but it worked. (6 for 13)

- From the October 18th, 1986 episode of Superstars, it's/wrestling/flashback_reviews/wwe/misc/wwf-championship-wreslting-033085.php. Piper has recently returned from hiatus (filming "Body Slam") as a babyface. Hart comes out with presents, reminding Piper has promised not to lay his hands on him. Hart offers Piper a crutch to lean on with his career over. Don Muraco has given him a Hawaiian lei, Mr. Fuji a "pair of little panties" to wear under his kilt, and Bob Orton has a pink cowboy hat for him to try and be as tough as he is. Piper laughs it off and offers Hart a seat, forcing him onto the chair. Piper says he has a present for Hart and asks him to close his eyes. Piper has a large bit of rope and ties him to the chair. "You're a funny guy! Let me show what I got for you!" He's got something to wash out Jimmy's filthy mouth. He gives Hart back the lei because it's the only lei he'll ever get. Piper pours the mouthwash into Hart's mouth and forces him to spit into the hat before putting it on his head. Well worth a point. (7 for 14)

Roddy Piper vs. Mr. Fuji:

From the November 1st, 1986 episode of Superstars. The strange silence here and there must mean Jesse Ventura doesn't get royalties for this one. Fuji was fully transitioned into a managerial role at this point but was occasionally used as in-ring talent for whatever reason (OK, we've established involvement in the last segment, but he's still not a regularly working wrestler at this stage). Piper removes the tape from his left knee and pounds away on Fuji with right hands. He comically thumbs the eyes and hits some more punches. Fuji with a blatant low blow to take control. Fuji misses a dive from the top rope. Piper lays in with rights and lefts. Don Muraco and Bob Orton come out for a distraction. Piper lays on the canvas, daring someone to make a move. Piper doesn't fare well in a 2-on-1 until he retrieves his crutch from ringside. The bell finally rings at 3:51, and it's a DQ AGAINST Piper somehow. That crooked Danny Davis! (7 for 15)

- From the November 29th, 1986 episode of Superstars, it's another edition of Piper's Pit with Jimmy Hart, who bribed George Steele with a poster of Elizabeth to take his spot. He's upset about being humiliated last time he was on the Pit and wants respect. Piper calls him a short, scrawny, ugly jerk. Piper says he doesn't want to beat Hart up and warns to not touch him. Hart slaps him around until Piper gabs him by the shirt. Suddenly, Adrian Adonis comes from behind with the crutch, and the brawl is on. Hart attacks with the megaphone, giving Adonis the opportunity to slap on the sleeper hold. Vince seems surprised to see Adonis. I guess he was briefly let go, then brought back at the request of Piper. Good segment. (8 for 16)

- From the December 20th, 1986 episode of Superstars, it's Piper's Pit with The Hart Foundation. He's got a giant bone as an equalizer gifted to him by the British Bulldogs. Jimmy Hart hangs back in the doorway, then behind Bret Hart and Jim Neidhart. Piper wants to know if Danny Davis is a member of the Hart Foundation. They deny it but claim he's the best referee in the WWF. Bret and Neidhart smack around a stuffed Matilda doll. Piper brings out a fire hydrant and comedy ensues. Meh. (8 for 17)

Roddy Piper vs. "Ravishing" Rick Rude:

We're jumping way ahead to the October 8th, 1989 card held at the Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto, Ontario. I've covered the show before, but we'll give this another watch for a more up-to-date opinion. Piper mocks Rude's gyrations as he removes his shirt and lifts the kilt at Rude's direction. Rude charges and misses as Piper used his kilt as a Matador's cape. Whip to the ropes and Piper with a backdrop, followed by a back-hand strike, knocking Rude out of the ring. Piper follows, slamming Rude face-first onto the ringside table. Back inside, Piper continues playing games with Rude before slamming him own on his tailbone. Rude hangs back on the ropes to avoid a dropkick and drops a flurry of forearms across the chest. Rude punishes the back with more forearms and grabs a bearhug. Piper briefly fights free, using the Greco-Roman Bite to his advantage, but Rude rakes the eyes and reapplies the hold. The commentary here is clearly not a live recording, talking of the Heenan Family losing the Tag Titles… a month after this show took place (in TV time). Whip to the ropes and Piper with a surprise inside cradle for two. Rude Awakening countered with a back-slide for two. Piper with a whip to the corner but he meets a knee charging in. Rude with a flying FIST ATTACK before settling in with a seated chin-lock. This is a long rest-hold. Whip to the ropes and Piper with a sunset flip. Rude blocks but misses a fist drop. Piper gives him a snot rocket and sends him into the exposed turnbuckle. Piper unloads with a flurry of rights and lefts and goes back to mocking Rude. The referee gets bumped and we get a mid-ring collision that knocks both Piper and Rude out. Piper counters the Rude Awakening with a low blow and hits a swinging neck breaker, but the referee is still not moving (someone call 9-1-1). Piper with an inverted atomic drop and running knee lift, sending Rude flying over the top rope. Piper uses the referee's limp arm to count Rude out… and the bell rings at 12:11?! Oh, it's a Disqualification win for Rude because of Piper bopping the referee earlier. They've had better matches, but this was alright, minus the (wait for it) lame finish. **1/2 (9 for 18)

"Rowdy" Roddy Piper vs. "The Model" Rick Martel:

From the May 13th, 1990 episode of Wrestling Challenge, and a 1st Round Match of the Intercontinental Title Tournament. Winner faces Mr. Perfect in the Semi-Finals. Logic dictates the babyface moving forward... or does it? Martel attacks from behind while Piper complains about the can of Arrogance. They get into a slugfest until Piper goes to the eyes. Piper with an atomic drop for two. Martel with a slam and elbow drops. Piper comes back with a flurry of rights and lefts. They take it to the floor, with Martel being introduced to the post. Martel nails Piper coming through the ropes and grabs his Arrogance. The referee talks it out of his hands, and the match resumes. Martel with another slam, but he misses the elbow. Martel misses a twisting body press. Piper with choking in the corner and drops Martel throat-first across the top rope. Martel goes to the eyes and grabs the atomizer again. Piper ducks under and shoulder tackles the midsection. They fight over the spray can, so Piper grabs a chair, and we have a lame-ass Double Disqualification at 5:25. Just a match to fill TV time, nothing to see here. (9 for 19)

"Rowdy" Roddy Piper vs. Mr. Perfect (w/ Bobby Heenan):

Taped on November 20th, 1990 from Syracuse, NY, and the only match on this collection to never be featured anywhere else. Piper was not a featured in-ring talent at this point (he was all over the place for 1990-91), so it's a bit of a surprise to see him used on this date. Perfect spits his gum and Piper spits on Perfect. Perfect gives him the business and pokes him, with Pip responding appropriately with a series of slaps. Piper snags the towel from Heenan and tosses it to the crowd. Perfect dares Piper to engage in fisticuffs, and that goes as well for him as you'd expect. Heenan wants Perfect to take a walk, but Perfect isn't going out like a chump. Lockup into the ropes and Perfect with a knee to the midsection. Whip and Piper with a hip toss. Perfect tries picking the leg, but Piper avoids him by playing a game of Skip-It. Piper with a series of stomps and a pair of leg sweeps, sending Perfect to the outside, again. This time Piper brings him back in with a double handful of hair, dragging Perfect around the ring. Piper with a casual poke of the eye. Whip is reversed and a double clothesline knocks both men down. Perfect with a series of rights and chops. Piper fires back but gets cut off with a rake of the eyes. Perfect with a push-off dropkick. Piper fakes being hurt as he sees Perfect climb the ropes and shakes him down once he reaches the top rope. Heenan picks the leg but heel miscommunication allows Piper to roll Perfect up for two. Whip to the ropes and Perfect counters a backdrop with the Perfect-Plex for three at 6:19. PIPER DID A CLEAN JOB?! Post-match, Perfect gloats about his victory and Piper offers a handshake, surprisingly accepted by Perfect. Huh. Nothing special, but they were clearly having fun with this. **1/2 (10 for 20)

- Series of commercials for the WWF Hasbro Action Figures, featuring Roddy Piper. SHENANIGANS! These were featured on Coliseum Video before! Not only did we get the regular line of figures, but also tag team sets (Demolition Smash and Crush, The Bushwhackers, and Rockers) AND super-sized, talking Warrior and Hulk Hogan figures. I'm torn on rating this because the nostalgia is blinding me... (11 for 21)

From the February 17th, 1991 episode of Wrestling Challenge. Mean" Gene Okerlund is standing by for an interview with Roddy Piper and Virgil. Piper says this week we'll have a lesson in Human Rights. "P" didn't always stand for Piper, it stood for poverty. There's a difference between being a friend and a fool. He hands Virgil a cloth and asks him to shine his boots for him. Virgil asks him to shine his boots, and Piper obliges. Why? Because they're friends. He tells Virgil to ask him to kiss his feet and yells for him to stick it in his nose, then has Virgil slap him every time he refuses. Piper yells at Virgil to wipe the cow "poo-poo" off his boots and slaps Virgil for saying no. He asks Virgil what he is… he's a man. "I don't see a black man, I don't see a white man, I don't see a yellow man. I see pure man!" Piper asks him to spell man. "M-A-N." One more time, how does Dibiase spell man? "V-I-R-G-I-L!". "Hey Dibiase, come WrestleMania, guess who's coming to dinner?" Good segment. (12 for 22)

WWF Intercontinental Championship Match:
Mr. Perfect (c) vs. "Rowdy" Roddy Piper:

OK, this is taped from the Copps Coliseum on January 25th, 1991, but the DVD lists March 19th, 1991, and the commentary talks about WrestleMania VII being next week. Was this featured on International TV, because it wasn't used on Prime-Time Wrestling. Piper channels a little Mr. Perfect, slapping his gum away, so Perfect gives him a slap. He does it again, so Piper throws the kilt on him and lashes him with his belt. To the floor, Piper tackles Perfect in the aisle and rams him into the barricade. Piper no-sells some chops and retaliates with his own, knocking Perfect over the top rope. Perfect goes to the eyes, but Piper somehow strips Hennig of his singlet and uses it to throw him around the ring. Perfect chokes Piper with the singlet before putting it back on. Whip is reversed and they meet in the middle for a double clothesline. Piper goes old school with an airplane spin that causes him to lose his balance and fall out of the ring. Perfect goes for a suplex, but Piper lands on top for two. They go back-and-forth with a small package for near falls. Perfect nails Piper with a dropkick and removes a turnbuckle pad. Whip and Perfect hooks a sleeper. Piper escapes with a jaw buster and sends Perfect to the exposed turnbuckle. Piper with a flurry of strikes, knocking Perfect out of the ring. Perfect climbs the ropes, but Piper shakes him down, causing him to get Counted-Out at 10:45. Post-match, Piper avoids a belt shot and nails Perfect with it instead. Weak finish, and the sleeper spot lasted a bit long, otherwise a good match. *** (13 for 23)

Final Thoughts, Part 1: I don't think anyone expected much from Piper's matches, so trying to sell another set of his sets, when all his more famous interview segments have already been used before, seemed a bit questionable. Thankfully they cherry picked some decent matches against top-tier talent, and they managed to find a few decent Pit segments that haven't been overplayed to death. Disc 1 started a bit rocky, but it picked up for the last hour. When we come back with Disc 2, it's more from the early 90's WWF, followed by his stint in WCW and then a bunch of appearances for WWE from 2003 and onward. I'm not sure I'm looking forward to all that, but maybe I'll be surprised, again.

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