The SmarK Rant for Prime Time Wrestling – 01.19.87
Your hosts are Gorilla Monsoon & Bobby Heenan. The running gag for this show sees Bobby accidentally giving Gorilla an audio cassette of a tryst with the secretary instead of the meeting minutes.
Leaping Lanny Poffo v. Magnificent Muraco
From the Boston Garden. Muraco actually accepts a handshake as Alfred Hayes wonders if Mr. Fuji is off celebrating “Japanese New Year”. I think he means Chinese New Year, but either way still kind of racist. Poffo works the arm after flipping out of a wristlock, but Muraco makes the ropes. They trade hammerlocks as Poffo continues to frustrate him and you just know this isn’t gonna end well for Poffo. Muraco takes a walk while Poffo cartwheels around, and finally he catches Poffo with a cheapshot to take over and goes to work. The heel fans are quite happy to see this. Muraco pounds away and takes him down with a front facelock, and Gorilla is again critical of the refereeing job of this official. There’s just no referees that could ever live up to Gorilla’s impossible standards. Muraco tries a splash and hits knee, and Poffo makes the comeback for the apathetic crowd. Moonsault gets two, but Muraco catches him with a powerslam to finish at 6:50. Felt like about 15 minutes. *1/2
Danny Spivey v. Jimmy Jack Funk
Still in Boston for this one. Hey, it’s Fake Barry Windham v. Fake Terry Funk! Throw in Cpl Kirschner (Fake Sgt. Slaughter) and Sivi Afi (Fake Jimmy Snuka) and 1986 was quite the year for cheap knockoffs in the WWF. They trade wristlocks to start and Spivey falls into a stungun like an oaf. What was he even TRYING there? Jimmy Jack drops him on the top rope to take over while we reflect on Jimmy Jack, who wanted to distance himself from one wrestling family by playing a member of another wrestling family. His mask starts to come loose in the corner, so Funk tosses Spivey and then reties it, lest the world discover that it’s actually mild-mannered reporter JESSE BARR under there. Back in, Funk with a fistdrop off the middle for two. Spivey blocks a bulldog and makes the comeback. Clotheslines out of the corner and a rollup finishes at 7:08. Holy cow was Spivey a bland worker before he went to Japan in 88. * And Vince thought he was gonna be the next Hulk Hogan!
Meanwhile, Kamala and the Wizard have words for Hulk Hogan.
Meanwhile, OUTBACK JACK hangs out in a bar in Australia and does some drinking. Oh yeah, it’s 1987 all right.
Piper’s Pit with special guest Hulk Hogan, as Jack Tunney joins us to present a big ol’ trophy for Hogan’s third anniversary as WWF champion. Hogan is of course quite happy to receive it, but grumpy Andre interrupts, quips “Three years to be a champion is a long time”, gives a fake smile, and leaves again. HOW SIMPLE DID IT USED TO BE? That took maybe 2 minutes, made a very subtle but effective point, and planted the seeds for something mammoth.
Bobby and Gorilla get into a big discussion about the situation, with Bobby championing for Andre and saying that maybe someone should get him a trophy, too. Gorilla notes that Andre doesn’t want the titles or accolades, and already has a house full of trophies.
Blackjack Mulligan v. Brutus Beefcake
Holy smoke this is gonna be a trainwreck. The Dream Team teams up for a beatdown on Mulligan, but he shrugs them off and puts Beefcake down with a clothesline and “flying” elbow for the pin at 2:10. Get the hook for Blackjack at this point, as he did two moves and they were both terrible. DUD
The Snake Pit with special guest Salvatore Bellomo, and Jake verbally abuses him for being fat and stupid. OK then.
Hillbilly Jim v. Jim Neidhart
I feel bad for this Boston crowd, because all the matches so far have been from the same show and they’ve all sucked. But then I remember the 2011 Bruins and I don’t feel so bad for them anymore. They trade shoulderblocks and Neidhart laughs at the attempt, so Hillbilly gives him a chop instead. Hillbilly agrees to a test of strength and immediately gets betrayed, but takes Anvil down with an armdrag to take over. Anvil drops him on the top rope and chokes away as we take a break. Back with Anvil missing a blind charge as Jim drops an elbow for two. Anvil pounds away in the corner and then just tosses the ref out of the way for the DQ at 6:40. We’re on quite the streak this week. DUD
Mike Rotundo v. Pete Doherty
We’re joined in progress for whatever reason, with the Duke giving his own commentary on the match as usual. Rotundo uses the wrestlings to control him on the mat, and a backdrop gets two. Duke briefly comes back and goes up, but Rotundo slams him off and finishes with the airplane spin at about 2:00 shown. The Dream Team heads out for an attack on Rotundo, but Danny Spivey saves. Well thank god. Hopefully this Boston show had a killer main event at least.
Islander Tama v. Scotty McGhee
Good god, they seriously sold 13,000 tickets with this shit lineup? Apparently the main event was Randy Savage v. Bruno Sammartino, so all the credit goes to them, I guess. McGhee controls on the mat with some boring holds while even the Network itself gets tired of this show and crashes. No way, pal, if I have to watch, you have to stream it! Scotty makes the usual mistake of ramming a samoan into the turnbuckles, which allows Tama to suplex him before missing a blind charge. McGhee goes up and gets slammed off, but Tama misses a splash. Scotty goes for the kill, but misses a bodypress out of the corner, and Tama finishes with a high cross. Not terrible. ** Scotty McGhee (also known as Garfield Portz) seemed to have some potential and a good look, but he had a pretty major stroke a few months later and he was retired at a young age as a result.
And we finish with the Hulk Hogan-Paul Orndorff cage match from SNME, which I’ve recapped enough times for one lifetime.
Take a pass on this one. Well except for Outback Jack. I see big things for that youngster!
Tags: "Three Years is a long time", Andre the Giant, Hulk Hogan v. Paul Orndorff, Prime Time Wrestling, SmarK WWE Network Rant, WWF