The SmarK 24/7 Rant for World Championship Wrestling – August 10 1985

The SmarK 24/7 Rant for World Championship Wrestling – August 10 1985

– Hey, it’s Tuesday night, and you know what that means…new content! In particular, what is rapidly becoming my favorite wrestling show to watch even 20 years later.

– Hosted by TONY, TONY, TONY! And David Crockett.

– At the top of the show, we get a clip of the Andersons and Tully breaking Sam Houston’s arm, so Dusty and Magnum immediately reply with a rambling Dusty promo about thugs and dogs and backyards and stuff.

– Ron Bass v. Gerald Finley. Finley gets a shot at Bass to start and then ducks away from the retaliation, but Bass elbows him down and drops a knee. Iron claw finishes quick at 1:12.

– That firebrand of excitement, Jim Crockett, announces that next week’s challenge match will feature the Rock N Roll Express against a mysterious Japanese team called The Rising Sun, managed by JJ Dillon. Oh, come on, that’s GOTTA be a setup.

– US title: Tully Blanchard v. Terry Taylor. Baby Doll is free from her slavery to Dusty Rhodes and is now back in Tully’s corner. Shoving match to start and Tully irritates Taylor and then runs away. Back in, he grabs a headlock, but Taylor responds with an armdrag, and Tully leaves again. Baby Doll’s top is, uh, not very flattering. They had bras back in 1985, right? Anyway, Taylor goes to work on the arm and Tully backs off long enough to catch him with a knee, but Taylor gets a rather unexpected press slam. Tully takes a powder again and Taylor smartly waits him out, and blocks Tully’s attempt at a cheapshot. Atomic drop and snapmare gets two. Tully runs again but Terry drags him back in and gets another slam, and holds him on the mat with a hammerlock. He’s tenacious with it, and then gets cheeky with a hammerlock slam for two. Tully tries to run but Taylor is ahead of him now, holding him in by the arm and dropping knees on it, and keeping him on the mat with an armbar. Tully finally goes to the eyes to escape and goes with another favorite — the boot rake — but Taylor slugs him down and forces him into the corner. Again, Tully has the perfect opportunity for a cheapshot, and goes low on Taylor for two before going to a chinlock. We take a break here and return with Taylor back in control with a spinning toehold, but Tully shoves him into the corner during a replay to break. Tully drops an elbow off the middle rope and tosses Taylor to take over, making sure to strut and talk trash with Taylor out on the floor. Tully was like the ultimate cowardly heel. Tully keeps pounding him down and now starts to work on the leg, but Taylor counters into a crossface and slugs him on the mat. Backdrop suplex gets two. Sunset flip is blocked, but Tully can’t hit his elbow, and then Taylor can’t get his slam. Both guys are running out of gas as Tully headbutts him for a double KO, but Taylor recovers first and dodges a punch, something you don’t see often. With Tully off-balance, Terry drops elbows on him for two, but Blanchard kneelifts him and cradles for two. He goes for the slingshot suplex, but Taylor cradles for two. They slug it out and Taylor wins that, and a fistdrop gets two. Butterfly suplex and Taylor goes for the leg again, apparently unaware of the time left, and he gets the figure-four with time running out. Tully fights for the ropes, but time expires anyway to save him at 17:33, which would make this a 20 minute draw with commercial factored in. Tully, sore loser even when he doesn’t lose, hits Taylor with the slingshot suplex just to make a point. OK, compare and contrast this with the worthless Neidhart-Brunzell 20-minute draw I reviewed from roughly the same era earlier today, and this one looks better for a ton of reasons. They had a clear idea of where the match was going, and it had clearly defined periods of offense for both guys, with constant motion and sequences that BUILT to something, even if it was just Taylor going for a figure-four or Tully trying to figure out how to cheat and win. Plus, and this is the important bit, it was FUN and ENTERTAINING and didn’t drag at any point. ****

– The Andersons come out and make no apologies for messing up Sam Houston, because it’s just business. Ric Flair joins them as we’re all just waiting for the inevitable now, but it’s still a few months away, sadly.

– Harley Race v. Jim Jeffers. Jeffers tries a headlock, but walks into a high knee and a kneedrop. Race continues with a neckbreaker and drops elbows and knees, setting up a shoulderbreaker for two. He finishes with a vertical suplex, just for the hell of it, at 1:32. 1/4*

– Paul Jones brings out Abdullah the Butcher and Barbarian and, no shock here, threatens Jimmy Valiant.

– Brody Chase v. Nikita Koloff. Russian Hammer and Russian Sickle and Nikita wants Flair. Chase throws chops, but Nikita is all “Bitch, please,” and casually shoves him down before finishing with another Sickle at 1:29. It’s a day of quickies, I see. DUD

– Ivan and Nikita reinforce that they want Flair and the World title is going to Moscow.

– The Rock N Roll Express v. Keith Erich & Alan Martin. It’s the rarely-seen purple outfits for the Express today. Jim Cornette joins us on commentary while the RNR switch off on headlocks on Martin and Gibson slams him. Ricky drops a leg and goes back to the headlock, then lets Erich tag in so they can headlock him, too. They keep switching off on the headlock and the double-dropkick finishes at 3:21. 1/2*

– Black Bart and JJ Dillon, with the shiny new version of the National title, have words for Ron Bass, most of which are “dag gum”. With all the new (and familiar) versions of the NWA title belts popping up, I have to wonder how soon it’s gonna be before the Big Gold Belt debuts?

And without even a goodbye from Tony, we’re done. How rude. Well, the show still rules, even if it was only the one-hour version this week.

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