The SmarK 24/7 Rant for PrimeTime Wrestling – August 31 1987
– Your hosts are Gorilla and…Bobby is MISSING! Gorilla promises to give the manhunt all the attention it warrants, then makes fun of him for being fired by Paul Orndorff again.
Nikolai Volkoff v. Paul Orndorff.
My poor faithful stopwatch finally died after many, many years of service tonight, so if the match times (courtesy a sidebar plug-in for Vista) seem a bit wistful, that’s why. Volkoff chokes Orndorff out to start and pounds away in the corner, but Paul slugs back and follows with a kneelift, showing good fire. Volkoff attacks again, but gets kneed down for two. Volkoff grabs a headlock and Orndorff tries to power out with a top wristlock, but the power of Communism is just too strong. Volkoff holds on at will and pounds him in the corner again, but misses a blind charge and that allows Orndorff to start working on the arm. We take a break and return with Volkoff having an argument with the crowd, then catching a bearhug on Orndorff. He gets a couple of two counts off that and then they go to the test of strength, which, on the upside, gives me time to read the new Observer. Orndorff fights out of it as I finish reading about RAW in HD, and Volkoff misses a charge to allow Paul to go up with a flying elbow. Clothesline finishes at 10:09. What, no piledriver? Started OK, got boring really quick. *1/2
– Meanwhile, Rick Martel and Tito Santana decide to form a team, and they’re gonna be striking with lightning FORCE, BABY! Hey, they’re STRIKE FORCE. Oh, the 80s, you were so gay. So very very gay.
– UPDATE! WITH CRAIG DEGEORGE! Brutus Beefcake visits world-famous stylist Salvatore Fodera to get haircutting lessons. I have to say, Beefcake’s mania about cutting hair is a little creepy in some ways. There were a lot of OCD people in the WWF. This was also quite stupid, but sadly I remember it in vivid detail, so it must have been effective.
– Meanwhile, Matilda talks to the British Bulldogs and gives them advice. Literally. What kind of shit was Dynamite doing that he heard his DOG talking to him?
– Bam Bam update! Fuji is out.
Ted Dibiase v. Sivi Afi
Is this gonna be one of those shows where they just show the matches from the same Boston house show? It’s the summer residence for Ted. I always LOVED the gimmick of rotating seasonal homes for Dibiase, because it’s such easy heat and yet makes him sound like a total snob. Slick on commentary with Alfred Hayes is …. uh …. not so much with the good. Dibiase takes Afi down out of a wristlock attempt to start and then uses the hair to block a second try. Ted keeps dominating off the lockup, and hiptosses him into a slam, then sends him reeling with an armdrag. Afi comes back with a crossbody and grabs a headlock, but Dibiase just MURDILIZES him with a clothesline. It’s a word, look it up. Avi is so messed up that we have to take a break and return with Dibiase just stomping the hell out of him. Backdrop out of the corner and Dibiase hits with the elbow off the middle that never seems to hit, so you know it’s a total squash. Slam and he lays the quality badmouth on Afi, then hits the chinlock. Afi fights back with his Snuka-lite offense, but Dibiase catches him with a powerslam and finishes with a cobra sleeper into a legsweep at 7:15. Total domination over Snuka’s sad little Mini Me. **, all for the awesome that is Ted Dibiase. Afterwards, he gets a woman to kiss his feet for $100. How was this guy never World champion? JBL recycled only 1/10th of the awesome of this gimmick and ended up holding the belt for a YEAR!
The Rougeau Brothers v. Johnny V & Dino Bravo
More from Boston. Jacques suggests calling Valiant “skinhead” before the match (well that’s a gimmick they’ve never touched on, at least…) and uses the distraction to roll him up for two. Johnny bails and gets control again, then brings Bravo in. Raymond overpowers him and gets a crossbody for two, then starts working on the arm. The Rougeaus double-team Bravo, but he blocks a monkey-flip with an atomic drop and the heels cheat in their corner. Bravo gets a knee to the gut and goes to the bearhug on Jacques, and they do the kicky-punchy offense to wear him down. Bravo with the side slam, but he misses the elbow and it’s hot tag Raymond. Elbow gets two, and a mule kick gets two. Bravo accidentally legdrops his partner trying to save, and Raymond splashes and pins Johnny V at 8:27. Pretty cookie-cutter stuff, but totally watchable. **
Brady Boone v. Iron Mike Sharpe
Mike pounds on Boone in the corner to start, but Brady handsprings out of the way and takes him down with armdrags, sending Sharpe running to the floor. Back in, Boone with a rollup for two and he goes to the headlock. Sharpe tries to overpower Boone, but gets dumped again. Back in, Sharpe goes with the direct approach and stomps him down, then adds a backdrop for two. Boone comes back with a rollup for two. Another one gets two. Sharpe clubs him with the arm protector again and chokes him out on the ropes, but Boone monkey-flips him into a pair of dropkicks. A third one misses, however, and Mike loads up the gauntlet and clubs him again. Boone takes him down and legdrops him, but puts his head down and gets clobbered again. Sharpe tosses him in celebration and hammers him on the apron, wasting lots of time. Back in, Sharpe misses a clothesline and Boone elbows him down and throws a kneelift for two. Dropkick gets two. Sharpe loads up the arm one last time, however, and nails Boone with a forearm shot for the pin at 9:33. Pretty fun show-opening type of thing. **1/2
Jake Roberts, Tito Santana & Bruno Sammartino v. The Hart Foundation & Honky Tonk Man.
This would be your elimination tag match main event, and where THIS car wreck came from I have no idea, but it sure looks fun. Big stall to start and Bret Hart gets to start with Tito, but runs into his knees in the corner right away. Over to the babyface corner, where Jake comes in and starts on Bret’s arm before hiptossing him and going for the DDT. Bret uses the power of his greasy hair to slide away and regroup on the floor. Back in, it’s over to the Anvil, who powers Snake down with a test of strength. Back to Bret, and he pounds away on Jake’s neck and drops an elbow. This finally brings Honky in the ring with him, and he shakes and wiggles after dropping an elbow. Anvil works Jake over in the corner, but Honky comes in and eats the kneelift. Honky comes back with a charge, but hits the corner and Jake comes back with the short-arm clothesline, but Honky shoves him out of the ring to block the DDT. Jake goes after Jimmy Hart, who nails him with the megaphone for the countout at 9:40 to eliminate him.
Next up, Honky gets Bruno, and the Hart faction traps him in their corner and works him over, as Bret and Jim trade off with shots while Honky distracts the ref. Lots of that, until Anvil misses a charge and Bruno tags Tito back in. Crossbody on Bret gets two, but the Harts double-team him. Bruno yanks Neidhart out, however, and Tito hits the flying forearm on Bret to eliminate him at 14:44. We take a break and return with Anvil giving it a go. He starts on the arm of Santana, but then just decides to pound on him instead. Neidhart with the slam, but an elbow misses. Tito tries to finish again, but Jimmy Hart trips him up and Neidhart pins him at 20:01. Well that’s bad news for Bruno.
So we’re 2 on 1 now, but Bruno can handle these clowns. Just not for long, as they wisely double-team him and choke him out, switching off for the offense as they go. Jimmy gets involved again, but hits the Anvil by mistake and Bruno pins him at 23:01. So now it’s Honky Tonk against Bruno, and Honky pounds away in the corner and grabs a headlock, but Bruno hits a high knee and scores a rare clean pinfall win on Honky at 24:29 to win the match. That’s a pretty good looking knee strike, actually. Good fast-paced match that set the tone for the Survivor Series a few months later. ***
– And Gorilla wraps it up, with no sign of Heenan evident outside of a collect call.