The Coliseum Video Rant XXIII: I Can’t Believe We’re Already At Twenty-Three


The Coliseum Video Rant XXIII: I Can’t Believe We’re At Number Twenty Three.

– Continuing on through my newest Coliseum tapes

Tape #1: WrestleFest ’94.

– Another famous one coming up, kids.

– Your host is Randy Savage and his freaky huge wardrobe of ugly outfits.

– Randy Savage v. Rick Martel. They jockey for position to start, and Martel bails to buy some time. He does jumping jacks to demonstrate that he has things under control. Savage chases, and of course gets caught coming in with a boot to the head. Martel goes over top of Savage and showboats, so Savage hiptosses him and sends him to the floor. Back in, Martel grabs a headlock and starts with the cheapshots, but Savage rams him into the turnbuckle and gets his own headlock. Martel can’t shake him. They finally do a criss-cross, into a Savage backslide for two. Martel bails again. Savage goes for him, so Martel tosses him and brawls with him on the floor. Suplex back in gets two for Martel. Sunset flip gets two for Savage, but Martel gives him a backbreaker. Savage gets an inside cradle for two and knees him out of the ring, and follows with the double axehandle, which gets two back in the ring. Martel goes to the throat to come back and sends him into the turnbuckles, but misses a charge and it’s the usual to finish for Savage at 9:17. Dragged too much to be that good, but there was enough in there to be worth a point. 1 for 1.

– WWF tag team title: Marty Jannetty & 1-2-3 Kid v. The Headshrinkers. You can pretty much pinpoint the date here, because Jannetty & Kid were only champions for a couple of weeks, if that. Samu overpowers Jannetty to start, but gets controlled with an armdrag. They do a criss-cross and Jannetty gets a monkey-flip, into another criss-cross, which ends with Marty dropping a fist and dropkicking him onto the floor. Okay then. Marty must be using the good shit tonight. The Kid comes in and continues on the arm, but immediately get walloped by Fatu and pounded. Powerslam gets two. He comes back with a dropkick, and hits a fleeing Fatu with a springboard cross-body onto the floor. Back in the ring, the champs double-team Fatu and stay on the arm. Jannetty superkick gets nothing due to Samu interfering. Marty goes after him like a moron and gets to sell Fatu’s clothesline, with 2 and a half rotations and a twist. Samu pounds away for two. Hell tomfoolery, shenanigans and skulduggery result. Something I’ve always wondered about: Does “skulduggery” derive from grave-robbing? Any budding etymologists out there research this stuff recently? The Shrinkers keep pounding away on Jannetty in spectacularly bland fashion. Marty finally hits a superkick on Fatu and makes the hot tag, and Kid kicks away on Fatu in the corner. Headscissors puts Fatu on the floor, and the champs hit a double-dropkick on Samu. Kid goes up and moonsaults Samu, but he no-sells. Afa comes in to interfere, but gets held off by the Kid. He manages to get a samoan drop on the Kid, however, and Samu gets the pin and the titles at 10:18? Hey, wait a sec, that’s not the title change! BUT WAIT! Another ref comes in and reverses the decision, and Jannetty & Kid retain. Dusty Finishes are not a good way to earn a point with me. 1 for 2.

– Men on a Mission are shown doing a rap number, with Oscar mumbling through lyrics so unintelligible that he sounds like someone singing along with “Hash Pipe” on the radio without knowing ANY of the words. Hell, maybe he WAS singing “Hash Pipe”, it’s not like you can tell.

– Adam Bomb v. Undertaker. You know, if you had told me 8 years ago that Adam Bomb & Crush would team up against Undertaker & Unabom and have the Worst Match of the Year in 2001, I’d have said ”Well, duh”. I guess I kinda lost the point somewhere there. Anyway, Adam attacks to start and sends UT into the stairs, and you can tell that it’s Phase Two Undertaker because he actually sells like a human being instead of a zombie. Back in, Taker no-sells some offense and fights back with a chokeslam and that’s it at 2:41. Why even bother? Poor Johnny Polo takes a chokeslam, too. Maybe that’s why he became so bitter. 1 for 3.

– Bret & Owen Hart v. Rick & Scott Steiner. Yes, this is the famous only meeting in history between these two teams. Scott takes Bret down with a double-leg to start, and Bret wisely gets the ropes. Back up, Bret gets his own takedown and rides Scott, and now Scott gets the ropes. Scott uses a vicious single-leg to take Bret down and steps over with a toehold, but Bret reverses out of it and they wrestle up to a headlock position. Criss-cross and Bret gets powered right out of the ring, where he regroups. Back in, they fight over a wristlock and Scott tries a powerslam, but Bret reverses to a rollup for two. Bret goes back to the arm, and Owen wants in. He continues on that road, but Scott slams out of it with authority and Rick comes in. They do a really cool mat-wrestling reversal sequence, trying to get control of each other. Rick goes for the arm, but they criss-cross and Owen gets powerslammed. Rick misses an elbow, but settles for a backdrop suplex that gets two. That’s a fair trade, I guess. Owen flips out of a wristlock and gets a german suplex for two. Suh-weet! Scott comes back in and walks into a leg lariat that gets two. Northern Lights suplex gets two. Rollup gets two for Owen, and Scott bridges into the butterfly bomb for two. This is some wild technical wrestling. Rick and Bret pair off next and the crowd is 50/50. Rick uses a wristlock takedown, and works the arm over, but Bret slams him and Rick hangs on. Great touch. You just don’t see that all the time. Rick takes him down to the mat and stretches him, turning it into a pinning combo for two. Criss-cross and Rick eats knee. Bret misses an elbow, however, and Rick is back on the arm. Solid strategy there. Rick stretches him into pinning position again and Lane & Gorilla actually get to discuss mat-wrestling strategies in a meaningful manner. Bret DDTs out of it and drops a leg, pounding him with elbows. He grabs a sleeper, and hangs on even as Rick rams him back into the turnbuckles. Rick falls into the ropes, and that’s enough to break. Bret smartly won’t release until forced by the ref. And why not? You’ve got a count of five. Bret suplexes Rick and misses another elbow, which allows Rick to head up and bulldog Bret for two. Rick sends him into the turnbuckles for two. Scott comes in with bad intentions and hits a tilt-a-whirl slam for two. Bret tries a charge and nearly dents the post with his shoulder as a result. Scott tries a suplex back in, but Bret reverses and suplexes Scott to the floor! Bret rams him into the apron and they head back in, where Owen takes over. He heads up and headbutts the back for two. Gutwrench gets two. Abdominal stretch, but Gorilla points out that Scott is too strong for it to be effective. And indeed, he reverses. Owen snaps off a belly-to-belly for two. Bret comes back in and pounds on the back. Legsweep gets two. Owen comes back in, and Bret cheapshots him on the apron to turn heel. Owen gets two. He misses a dropkick, however, and Rick gets back in and goes at Owen again. Tilt-a-whirl backbreaker gets two. Tombstone gets two. Scott comes in and gets a Dragon Suplex for two. Oh MAN. Rick with the Steinerline for two. He goes to a rear chinlock, and Scott comes back in and hits the MOTHERFUCKING SCREWDRIVER! OH MY GOD! That gets two, as Bret saves. He just DRILLED Owen right on his head, too. Nasty. Owen takes a breather outside, and Scott hammers him on the apron, but Owen suckers him in and slingshots him to the floor. Owen manages to tag Bret, who hits Scott with an atomic drop and a clothesline for two. Backbreaker and second-rope elbow get two. He can’t get the Sharpshooter because Rick saves, so Owen tries, and Rick saves again. The Steiners then go for the bulldog, but Owen cradles Scott for two while Bret pushes Rick off. It’s BONZO GONZO and both Rick & Bret end up on the floor, and Scott follows with a double axehandle onto Bret, and Owen follows with a pescado onto Rick, and the ref calls for the bell at 24:52. The referee brigade can’t break up the fight, however, and the Steiners accuse the Harts of being cowards. Well, you can’t say that about Canadians, so let’s get it on! It’s a huge brawl again, and the officials finally get all four separated, but they keep going. Finally the Steiners decide they’ve had enough, so now BRET eggs them on and here we go again with another brawl. That’s awesome. Finally, everything gets calmed down and they all shake hands and go home. The match was amazing, an easy ****3/4 and probably one of the best matches of the decade. 2 for 4.

– WWF title: Yokozuna v. Mr. Perfect. I sense someone taking bumps. Perfect tries a cross-body but gets slammed. Yoko misses the elbow, and Perfect dropkicks him out of the ring. Ho ho, everyone’s energetic tonight. Yoko stalls for a while, and heads for advice from Fuji, so Perfect crotches him. He misses a dropkick, however, and bumps like a pinball off a double-chop. He does a triple gainer off a clothesline, and Yoko goes to the Vulcan Nerve grip. Yoko chops him down and tosses him, as Perfect is just bumping like he’s made out of rubber and hopped up on more painkillers than Shawn Michaels at a physiotherapy session. He fights back to the apron, but meets the post. Back in, he gets whipped into the turnbuckles and nearly bounces halfway across the ring. Yoko misses a charge and Perfect slugs back, but can’t knock him down. Flying clothesline does the trick, but he pops right back up like a giant Weeble-Wobble. Fuji distracts Perfect, and you can guess the rest. Sayonara at 7:48. 2 for 5.

– Intercontinental title: Shawn Michaels v. Razor Ramon. Okay, we’ve got a short-haired Kevin Nash and Ramon challenging as a face, so mathematically that would place this between July ’93 (Ramon’s face turn) and September ’93 (Shawn’s temporary departure from the promotion). They trade moves to a stalemate to start, and Shawn hammers him in the corner, then headfakes a cross-body before getting a sunset flip. Ramon blocks and clotheslines him to the floor. Everyone regroups. Shawn grabs a headlock, but misses a dropkick and gets catapulted to the floor. Back in, Shawn bumps around for Razor, but leaps up top and hits him with a flying clothesline that sends Ramon to the floor. Shawn follows with a double axehandle from the apron. Shawn is looking decidedly – shall we say – bulked up here, thus indicating that while he hadn’t found Jesus yet, he certainly found Ben & Jerry. Back in, Shawn pounds on the back and gets two. Shawn hits the chinlock. Ramon escapes and chokeslams him. Shawn bumps over the top via a corner whip and Ramon seems ready to finish, so Shawn and Big D take a walk. However, they do the old “If he walks he loses the title” bit, so back we go. Ramon backdrops him for two. Ramon puts him on top, but Shawn bodypresses him, which Ramon reverses for two. Ramon catches him with a blockbuster slam for the pin and the title at 11:20, but another ref immediately calls it off. Shawn superkicks him for two as we continue again. Shawn hammers away, but puts his head down and gets caught with the Razor’s Edge. Big Kev pulls Shawn out and that’s a DQ at 13:10. Really good despite all the booking silliness, but ***1/4 good, not ***** good like the ladder matches. 3 for 6.

– Jerry Lawler interviews Bret Hart, and gets his ass kicked.

– Diesel v. Bret Hart. This is early 94, so no one has a title. Diesel hammers on him to start, using the power of his mulletude to dominate him, but Bret goes for the knee and works him on the mat. Johnny Polo, as usual, is doing everything in his power to annoy Gorilla. Bret keeps on the knee with a spinning toehold, but Diesel shoves him off. Bret trips him up and posts the knee, however. And the quad rips RIGHT OFF THE BONE. Oh, wait, sorry, 8 years early. Shawn Michaels clocks Bret off-camera, however. Back in, Diesel goes to the bearhug as Polo’s commentary completely steals the show. Bret comes back with a clothesline for two, and into the usual sequence. Legsweep gets two. Second rope elbow and he goes for the Sharpshooter, but Diesel blocks. Heel miscommunication and Bret gets that Sharpshooter, no ref. Owen Hart storms in, turns on Bret, and Diesel gets the pin at 10:37. This was the usual Bret-Diesel match. 4 for 7.

The Bottom Line: Solid tape, even without the classic tag match. But with it whee dawgie! Get this bad boy if you can. And speaking of tag teams

Tape #2: The British Bulldogs.

From there, we go all the way back to the 80s, in the heyday of one of the great teams of all-time.

– The British Bulldogs v. Iron Sheik & Nikolai Volkoff. From Oct. ’85, according to Gorilla. Thanks, man. Bulldogs attack to start and the heels bail. Back in, Davey gets worked over in the heel corner and backdropped by Sheik. Clothesline gets two. Slam gets two. Davey rolls up Volkoff for two, however, and dodges a charge. Dynamite Kid comes in and works the arm, but Volkoff cheapshots him and more heel beatings follow. Sheik gets a gutwrench for two. He tries again, but Dynamite reverses to his own suplex. Sunset flip gets two. Volkoff chokes him out and drops him on the top rope. Piledriver gets two. Heel miscommunication allows the hot tag to Davey Boy, and noggins are knocked. Powerslam for Sheik gets two. Davey puts his head down, however, and gets hit with a release german to set up the camel clutch. Kid breaks it up and it’s BONZO GONZO, but the heels double-slam Smith and work him over. Volkoff goes for a slam, but Kid dropkicks Smith on top for the pin at 6:37. This was very dumbed-down for the Bulldogs, but there was enough suplex goodness in there to keep it interesting. 1 for 1.

– Dynamite Kid v. Bret Hart. 2 for 2. Sorry, reflex action. Bret is skinny and dressed in blue. Kid overpowers him, and catapults him into the corner, and Bret bails. Kid looks to follow with a highspot, but changes his mind and Bret just takes a breather. Back in, Bret hides in the ropes and pounds on Dynamite, but gets hit with an atomic drop. Snap suplex gets two. Kid hits the chinlock, and they do a hammerlock reversal sequence that ends with Bret getting sent to the floor. Clipped to Bret coming back in for a test of strength, but Kid does the Owen flip out of it, into a wristlock. Bret does his OWN flip out of THAT, and pounds him down. Knee to the gut and hairtoss follows, and Bret gets the second rope elbow and legdrop. Bret hammers away and tosses him, and slams him on the concrete floor. Ouch. Back in, backbreaker gets two. Kid sunset flips for two, but Bret stomps the midsection to end that rally. Bret pounds away with forearms, but Kid reverses to a backslide for two. Kid reverses out of a backbreaker and gets his own, but Bret ties him in the ropes. He takes a run at him and crotches himself, however, allowing Dynamite to make the comeback. Clothesline and headbutt set up a retaliatory hairtoss, and Bret tries to bail. Kid whips him into the corner and drops a knee for two. Backdrop suplex gets two. Flying kneedrop gets two. Man, he just dropped that sucker right between Bret’s eyes. Kid gets tripped up on a criss-cross for some reason, and Bret reverses on a go-behind puts Kid on the floor. Back in, Kid rolls up Bret for the pin at 11:09. Yup, my reflex was the right one. 2 for 2.

– Davey Boy Smith v. Jim Neidhart. Davey goes for the headlock to start and they trade shoulderblocks. Anvil goes down for a monkey-flip and gets stomped. Another power battle goes nowhere, so Smith takes him down by the legs and ties him up. Neidhart makes the ropes and now it’s time for a test of strength. Anvil cheats to get ahead, but Davey dropkicks him and he takes a breather. Davey works a wristlock, but walks into a knee. He pounds away, boring the fans. Brawl outside and Davey hits the railing, and the pounding continues back in. Smith comes back with a corner clothesline, however, and we hit the chinlock. Neidhart hotshots him for the pin at 5:41. This was pretty much the opposite of the last match in every way. 2 for 3.

– The British Bulldogs & Lou Albano v. The Dream Team & Johnny V. Davey overpowers Valentine to start and the faces work him over in the corner. Kid shoulderblocks Valentine down and pounds away in the corner. The faces stay on that arm, but Valentine gets a backbreaker on Smith and brings Brutus in. Johnny V drops the elbow and now the heels trade off the punishment until Hammer hits the chinlock. Alas, Hammer gets caught in face territory and slugs it out with Dynamite, who gets a corner clothesline for two. Greg comes back with a backbreaker for two. He goes up and gets slammed off, and Brutus cuts off any potential tagging, but gets hammered in the face corner. He gets a neckbreaker on Dynamite for two. Suplex gets two. Johnny V comes in and elbows away, and choking follows. Hammer pounds away and gets a forward piledriver for two. Elbowdrop and figure-four, but Albano saves. Hot tag Davey Boy, who destroys Johnnie V and powerslams him. Valentine saves, but Albano goes for Johnnie. Meanwhile, Valentine misses an elbow on Smith and Davey powerslams him for two. Delayed suplex on Hammer, but Johnnie V saves. Kid comes back in and pounds away, and Davey comes in with a cradle that gets two. Double-team gets two for the Bulldogs. Clothesline gets two for DK. Snap suplex gets two and it’s a big brawl. Brutus gets rolled up for the pin at 12:40. Pretty lethargic stuff, with Valentine wrestling the entire match, more or less, and the Bulldogs not doing anything more strenuous than kicking and punching. 2 for 4.

– Clips of the Bulldogs winning the tag titles from the Dream Team at Wrestlemania 2. Gotta love OZZY being the one celebrating with the titles.

– We take a look at the Bulldogs’ training regimen.

– The British Bulldogs v. The Moondogs. Davey pounds on Spot to start, and Dynamite sends him reeling into the corner. Rex (Randy Culley, aka Deadeye Dick, aka the original Demolition Smash) tries to work the arm on Smith, but Davey reverses out. The Bulldogs double-team with a headbutt and Kid works a headlock, and the Bulldogs even do a bit of double-teaming behind the ref’s back. Smith kneelifts Spot and gets a slam for two. Rex gets a cheapshot to turn the tide, however, and pounds away on Smith. That gets two. Big splash gets two. Neckbreaker gets two. Spot splashes him for two. Smith and Spot collide for a double KO, but Rex comes in and gets two. False tag behind the ref’s back and they double-team Smith for two. Rex goes high-risk and misses badly, but the Moondogs cut off any potential hot tags. Smith comes back with a crossbody for two, but lands in the wrong corner and gets pounded again. Hot tag and Kid cleans house and gets a fistdrop, but things break loose. Kid finishes Spot with a bodypress at 8:16. Better than you’d expect, actually. 3 for 5.

– Davey Boy Smith v. Greg Valentine. Valentine gets a quick rollup for one. Smith clotheslines him and Hammer bails, as Gorilla screws up a Dirty Harry quote. It’s “A man needs to know his limitations”, not “A man must know his capabilities”. Totally different meanings. Back in, Hammer pounds away, but gets pounded right back in turn. Smith gets two. To the armbar, and Smith dropkicks him. Valentine begs off to buy time, but Davey takes him down into a Sharpshooter! Nice one, too. Next weird submission move sees Davey force Valentine into the splits, which probably hurts something awful. He tries a suplex, but Valentine blocks, before Smith finally powers it over and gets two. Clipped a bit to Valentine working Smith over and hitting the chinlock. Davey powers out with a backdrop suplex, and gets two. Powerslam gets two. Valentine takes a powder to regroup, and Davey chases. Back in, Hammer catches him coming in and stomps away. Hammer goes to work on the legs and hooks the figure-four, but Davey easily pulls himself to the ropes. Back to the leg, but Smith pulls him off. Hammer misses an elbow, but goes back to the figure-four again, and this time gets pushed into the corner. Davey whips him from hither to thither, but Valentine comes off the top with a forearm shot for the pin at 8:38. Not much of a finish, but it was logical, I guess. 4 for 6.

– Dynamite Kid v. Brutus Beefcake. Oh geez, lucky Kid. JIP as Kid overpowers Brutus a couple of times, and he bails. Clipped to a test of strength, as Brutus works the arm. Kid does the spinning reversal and goes to his own armbar. Beefcake punches and kicks to take over, and gets a suplex for two. The dreaded bootrake to the face and double-chop wear down Dynamite, and with offence like that, how can Kid survive? Kid comes back with the snap suplex and falling headbutt, however. Brutus dumps him to buy time. Back in, Brutus uses the international object to set up a suplex, but DK reverses in for the pin at 6:37. Kid might as well have been handcuffed and blindfolded for all the good Brutus was. 4 for 7.

– The British Bulldogs v. John Studd & King Kong Bundy. Studd pounds on Smith to start, and blocks a sunset flip. Kid clotheslines him down, however. Smith pounds away on Studd, but can’t slam him. So the Bulldogs opt for a double dropkick instead. Bundy comes in and misses an elbow, and the Bulldogs dropkick him, too. Smith bounces off alone, however, and gets worked over. Studd gets a clothesline and elbow for two. Smith reverses a slam, but gets kneed for his troubles. Bundy gets two. Backbreaker gets two. Studd misses a charge, but no-sells and the heels keep pounding. The ref gets shoved and it’s a DQ at 4:38. Okay then. 4 for 8.

The Bottom Line: Not what you’d call a great wrestling showcase, but the Bulldogs were both solid workers even at their worst, and Bret v. Dynamite is must-see stuff.

The Bottom Bottom Line: Another pair of winners this time around, both heavily involving Bret Hart, oddly enough. Harts v. Steiners is definitely worth seeking out, even by itself.

Next time: The WWF’s Most Unusual Matches and Even More Most Unusual Matches! Be there or be usual, I guess.