Thursday, November 7, 2013


Vince did a really nice recap of the Battle Royal last week, but you can read my review of it HERE if you're just joining us. Razor and Martel were the last guys in the ring so they're competing for the built here tonight. Vince trying to sell the importance of this match through Columbus day has to be heard:

VINCE(and this is exactly what he said): Well gentlemen, let's not forget that we're celebrating Columbus Day here in the United States. Columbus, by the way, not only was he representing the Queen of England when he discovered America, don't forget, Columbus was hispanic! This could be a great day for those of the hispanic extraction - a great day for Razor Ramon.

All made better by Macho Man pronouncing "Los Estados Unidos".

Razor does some arm work early on that was nice, but it doesn't lead to anything special, mostly because Martel takes over to work over his back most of the match. Martel is totally outclassed physically by Razor but he does a great job of cheating to regain the advantage, while at the same time applying some solid offense to wear Razor down. Some bad guys can cheat, but they can't effectively work a guy to make a crowd believe the hero is in trouble. There's a fun sequence from the Boston Crab that leads to some really spiffy near falls. It's a pretty well paced match, but not really the best work of either guy this year. Still worth watching.

Headshrinkers killing one of the opponents and throwing him to the corner so his partner can tag in NEVER gets old. Not ever. They KO'd Person and then slapped him in the face with their feet to see if he'd wake up. If you're going to squash someone do it like this folks.

Owen tools this guy with some flippy stuff. All his stuff looks good and crisp, the highlight being a SICK belly to belly suplex off an irish whip. Owen hit a big missile dropkick before finishing the match with a Northern Lights Suplex - which I wish people did more of.  The only problem with the match was that it didn't seem to flow very well, which is more on how Owen fit his stuff in. Nothing egregious, just a little disjointed.

Bobby Heenan comes in with the most awkward bit of commentary of the night with this line:

"How many kids does Stu...and uh.. what's her name...Fellatio, have?" To which Vince exclaimed "FELLATIO!?" Probably not for the first time.

You can now find King selling Pokemon cards at Flealand Fleamarket, Bowling Green Kentucky.
Borga talks poopoo on America and Lex Luger. Luger comes out and talks about how hypocritical Borga is for bashing the US but collecting a paycheck here. He then tells him to, you guessed it, "Love it or Leave it!", which even Luger said was a trite phrase before he said it. Luger wanted to rassle, but Borga left saying they'll fight when he says they'll fight. Whatever.

FUCK YEAH ROSS GREENBERG. Greenberg has been tanning up and pumping the iron. He's even added a grimace to his facial repertoire. Sadly for Ross, he's still Ross Greenberg and he flops around like a goober selling pain like a cast member from Troll 2. And it's not even one of Adam Bomb's best performances. The slingshot clothesline looked like ass. So I guess the highlight is Ross Greenberg's developing physique. Sadness.

Are you kidding me?! Not only are the RnR's making their WWF debut but it's against Duane Gill and Barry Hardy?! This is a dream match for me if there ever was one. This was fun and quick, and I particularly like the finishing bit leading to the double dropkick. I really want to see them face the Headshrinkers now. How brilliant would that be watching them get mauled by Fatu, before making the hot tag. I really hope that match happens before they leave again.
I thought this was a new wrestler but it was just a commercial from 1993. Disappointing.

A good first match, and some decent moments in the squashes. Not as good as last weeks battle royal episode, but I'm excited to see where Razor goes as champion and what they do with the Rock N' Roll Express. The tag division is bursting with talent right now, it's time to throw a couple at each other.

Monday, November 4, 2013

The Importance of Wrestling Commentary

Watch this and read along.

This match isn't particularly good or memorable. It's Kerry Von Erich and Warlord filling time for 10 minutes before a count out draw. There's some nice bits to keep the crowd involved and  warm during a big show, which is important in the bigger picture of booking a complete card, but I'm not writing about the match itself. This is about the commentary.

We have a three man booth: "The Anvil" Jim Neidhart, Gorilla Monsoon, and Bobby "The Brain" Heenan. A current wrestler, a former wrestler, and a current wrestling manager. These characteristics are important to remember as it gives them "expert credentials" when giving analysis to the action in the ring. Anvil kicks things off by mentioning that Kerry is a "World Class" discus thrower and that he applies skills learned in that sport to one of his moves: The Discus Punch. While fans may wonder how discus throwing translates to a complete competitor, Anvil further explains that the training regimen necessary to launch a discus at a "world class" level, takes a lot of body work to get the proper "torque"  - and Kerry looks in great enough shape to make this claim credible.

Anvil then talks about the size difference, specifically referencing Warlord's legs and how much power they have. Brain and Gorilla discuss his bench pressing prowess and his toughness. They're building up both men as exceptional physical specimens, with very specific descriptions. It's not just "this guy is strong and powerful", it's "this guy can throw an object long distances" - and "this guy can bench press heavy objects not just once, but several times!" The point isn't that these statements are true or false, but that they can be believable. Because our sources are "credible" and because the two wrestlers in the ring look pretty damn impressive physically, we can buy the claims being sold to us.

The lines are further defined by Anvil claiming there to be a difference in being "gym strong" and being "wrestling strong". He's a successful wrestler known for strength, not necessarily physique, so he has credentials to back this up. This kind of talk elevates the "sport" or professional wrestling, as the commentators define character attributes needed to a create a complete wrestler, while at the same time teaching the audience that, while size is important, a smaller wrestler can defeat a larger wrestler, or at least hold his own, because he may be smarter or have a different type of muscle strength. Bob Backlund is a great example of this type of wrestler. He didn't look strong and he wasn't big, but he could dead lift Hulk Hogan off the ground and was WWF champion. So with the help of wrestling history, these claims are backed up. When Gorilla Monsoon sees Warlord run Kerry into the guardrail and utters "I'm glad I retired", he's effectively building up this current generation of wrestlers as not only a breed apart from normal athletes, but a step above the previous generation of wrestlers. That's character building that promotes the wrestlers in the ring and the company that employs them, and it was only four words. Simple and effective.

What's important about wrestling commentary isn't just the calling of moves or stupid jokes, it's creating a world for the fans to live in. This doesn't have to get super detailed, it can really be very simple. At its core, wrestling is a sport in which men square off with one another for money, titles and prestige. The more you work to define that conceit as "wrestling reality" the more the fans can fully live in that world. Even when we know it's fake, humans are generally more than willing to live in a fantasy and get emotionally attached. Wrestling is at a point now where they they think that since everyone knows it's all a show, that they can treat it like it's just a show. Wrestlers aren't wrestling for money or job security, they're wrestling to put on a 5 star match for fans. That's not tangible. And while this world view has produced some nifty matches in the past, it doesn't have the same emotional weight. The more tangibles you can put into a bout, the more attached fans can get to the characters in the ring. Kerry Von Erich and Warlord aren't just having a a dance for fans to enjoy, they're competing for dollars and the chance to move up the ranks and possibly an Intercontinental title shot. Winners move up, losers stay down. In current WWE, this isn't so much the case. Losers can eventually find themselves in US title match, which devalues not only the belt, but devalues all the bouts wrestlers compete in across the board. Gorilla doesn't do it in this particular match but he usually finds time to interject something about purse money in his commentary and whether guys would have to split it if there was a draw. It's not incredibly detailed, but the important specific is there and our minds do the rest.

This concept of money and value pertaining to the outcome of wrestling matches is further detailed by Bobby Heenan, a wrestling manager. His job is, in "wrestling reality" NOT to stand at ringside to get heat. His job is to sign his wrestlers to lucrative match-ups and insure his guys get paid (because that means he gets paid.). It just so happens that the way he insures these victories - cheating - gets him heat. This tangible motivation is something fans relate to, and the more that wrestling characters live those motivations the more the fans can buy into the action. Heenan does this by explaining that he makes sure Barbarian and Haku hit the gym all the time. Of course he doesn't really do this in real life, but we believe in it because it makes sense. He's trying to make good on his investments.

So the commentators have to define the characters, which they did in the opening, and they also have to define the world, which should come naturally as they call the action. The third important detail is to help tell the story in the ring. This isn't just calling out the names of holds, but understanding the psychology - possibly even more so than the wrestlers in the ring - of what's going on and why it's happening. Why doesn't Warlord fall down when Kerry goes for the sunset flip? Anvil prepped you for it before the match even started - look at those legs. Why did the discus punch not drop Warlord the first time? Because Warlord is not an average man. He's exceptional. Gorilla doesn't just call moves, he explains what they're damaging and explains the longer lasting effects of the holds, by citing the pain he feels in his older age. This not only adds to characters and their personal drama -they're wrestling for money but they're sacrificing long term health for it - but it also gives weight to the holds and maneuvers done in the ring. Every back breaker now means something not only in the short term - this match - but in the long term - Kerry and Warlord's life.

When Anvil talks about Warlord being confident about winning, it's Heenan who says overconfidence can lead to defeat, especially against the Texas Tornado. This is key for two reasons. One, Heenan has been talking smack about Kerry the whole match, so these moments where The Brain compliments him mean a lot, and two, he's preparing you for the possibility that Kerry can come from behind at any moment. The match isn't over, Kerry can still do this. He's actually cheer leading for the guy while bashing him. I point this out specifically because many heel commentators don't quite know how to put a guy over while they're trashing him. JBL is great at it. Go back to his first stint on Smackdown and listen to him call a Matt Hardy match. JBL talks shit about everyone, but when Matt's in the ring he will usually say "This guy is one step away from the world title, he just has to put it together." Then he talks shit about him again.

Good commentary is invaluable to professional wrestling, but it's pretty damn hard to find. Bad commentary can kill matches and make them unbearable no matter how good the guys in the ring are. I could watch the match with the sound off, but then I'd miss out on the crowd reactions and that's pretty darn important to me too. I'd tell some companies that if they don't have anyone good to do it, don't have any commentary at all. Let the wrestlers tell the story on their own until you can find someone to help, not hinder. Commentary is not the place for people to put their goofball friends on so they can make lame pop-culture references and scream cliches they gleamed off a Jim Ross call. The commentator creates the world for a fan to live in where a guy can whip another guy into some ropes and they will, for some insane reason, bounce off them and come running back. They're the ones who make the drama in the ring something the fans want to live through. I could have chosen a great match with a great call, like the 1992 Royal Rumble - but I chose this one to show that even in a match of no importance, Anvil, Heenan, and Monsoon make it have value. Giving seemingly worthless matches a sense of importance, improves the value of the entire card and the promotion as a whole. This is the power and responsibility of the announce team and it shouldn't be taken lightly.

Friday, September 20, 2013

ZERO-1 01:01:2013

So I'm watching stuff from January. Let's see how this goes.
 Mashita is a Sayama trainee who did some Real Japan and BattlARTs. I know I've seen him before, but I can't remember anything he's really done. He looks really lackadaisical and a little generic in a shooty way. I like his work in the corner, but there wasn't much else for him. Yokoyama made his debut at 21 in 2010. I don't remember watching him back then, but I like where he's at now. For one he's rocking wicked mullet, that is also party in the front with a stubby mohawk deal. This match is worth watching for a bit of neat, somewhat subtle psychology in the finishing stretch. Yohoyama counters a running knee with a running back body drop. Mashita sells the back and walks to a corner to regroup. Yokoyama bull rushes him in the back, tosses him down, and stomps his back again before climbing the rope. Then Yokoyama does a really heavy top rope elbow drop on Mashita's lower back to go into the nice camel clutch submission. It really felt like it came about in an organic way, with Yokoyama noticing he had an in with Mashita holding his back, and then eating it up. It's a cool bit of thought that I really appreciate.

Yuhi is totally fun with her kicks and springboard business. Yeah she nearly mucks up the springboard dropkick, but it works out in only pulling a nearfall. Both girls have some fun counter submissions, with Yuhi in particularly showing some great desperation in her flash-sub attempts. Definitely a fun match worth checking out with some fun kicky stuff and a nice finish.

Okinawa Pro Representing! The early comedy stuff with Menso~re was fun and energetic, but everything got less and less interesting as it went on. Lots of nut shots. They'd also take inopportune moments to work the crowd during up tempo stuff. Like with Bikuma's DDT. Sato should have just pushed him off at that point. Didn't get to see much of any of the gaijin. So nothing much of interest here.

There's a cool gameplan here with Sato's team deciding they want to cut the ring off on Obata and quadruple team him a lot. Obata's character is fiery and hard headed, just the kind of guy who'd think he could take on four dudes on his own. It works out for them for the most part. Ueda is the guy they want to keep out of the ring, as they show no fear towards the gaijin wrestlers. Jesse Williams is kind of awkard and hasn't totally figured out how to use his size and Will Gibson is completely clowned by Onryo during their segment. The ending is a nice call back to that and what they'be been building on. Ueda is already illegally in the ring trying to help out Obata, and Obata who's hurt pretty bad tags out to Gibson. Once the ring clears leaving the two legal men, it's, yep, Gibson and Onryo. So after some counters Onryo sneaks a pin on Gibson for the win. It's not a great match, but the story is there, and there's some cool moments between guys like Kamikaze(who I'm normally not into) and Obata, as well as some nice work from Sato and Ueda.

Bono clowned these little dudes pretty hard, no selling nearly everything. I liked their spunk and charisma. Kyung-ho's gear looks Jeff Hardy-ish, which was made complete when he decided to go for a Swanton Bomb towards the end of the match. And it looked ridiculous since Akebono was really far away for that type of move. The best part of the match was when Akebono seemingly lost his shit on Jason New after a slap. Decent squash match, but I'd really like to see New and Kyung-ho against some guys at their own level to see how they can piece stuff together.

After the match Daichi Hashimoto, who was supposed to wrestle Bono on this show but was injured, slapped the big man in a little face off. Then Atsushi Onita showed up and revealed a video of his henchmen (Bad Boy Hido!) talking shit to Bono's wife and two sons at a restaurant They goaded him into signing a contract for a death match. It's a cool story and I really enjoyed Akebono getting super pissed off.


Wasn't really feeling this.Despite a couple of neat sequences, this didn't have a good rhythm and I don't feel like it really built up the anticipation of someone losing. It just kind of felt like I'll do some stuff. You do some stuff. Then just don't get up when I pin you. Just not a particularly engaging story that made me care about either guy. Kind of a let down, even though I wasn't expecting a whole lot.

I really dug the first chunk with Otani getting worked over. It was fun to see him start out hot and then after some Raideen chops he becomes an old man fighting to survive. Lots and lots of chops in the first half which I was fine with. It got a muddled sometime after Tanaka's hot tag, but was enjoyable overall. I feel like Raideen is a weaker version of Joe Doering. He's not bad, he just doesn't have much personality, other than big dude who hits people. He's got a good look, and he's solid in the ring, he could just use a little more character to make himself larger than life. Everyone else was good as usual.

As is my usual Z1 experience, there's some good stuff and there's some bland stuff that keeps it from being a great Japanese company.There's a lot of guys who are just a hair past generic, showing you just enough personality to frustrate you that they don't show more. Sekimoto, Tanaka, Otani, Kohei Sato, and Obata are all good roster members, they just need something or someone to give them a little bit more edge. The women's match is probably the best with the opener, main event, and 8 man tag being other matches worth checking out.

Sunday, August 25, 2013


Tonight's card has a couple of nifty little reoccurring themes. This one runs a little long, for reasons you'll see later but we've got a good mix though, with matches spanning nearly forty years! Some high flying action, some crazy ass bloody brawls, some nifty joshi, and even a quicky tag match that features a Terry Funk run-in. Because you can't keep me away from Terry Funk.

As with all my mixtapes, I have the matches saved in a playlist form, so you can sit back and rock out the matches without having to do much of anything:

Four title matches this week, none of which are the NWA Heavy, WCW World, or WWF title, which surprises me. Speaking of titles let's kick this mother off with STEVEN MOTHER F'N REGAL.


Davey Boy brings the goods with the size and acrobatics. The early wristlock counter wrestling is so damn slick, and never boring. Davey Boy's acrobatic counters are still impressive for a guy as beefed up on natural supplements as he is. The fifteen minute time limit creates an interesting story, with Regal being in NO rush to finish the match. He's the champ, a draw is a win, and he's more than happy to sit on his submissions. Davey Boy, as a character, rarely feels like a smart wrestler. He gets by on his super human agility and power. It's not until the match hits the final four minutes that Davey realizes, "oh crap, I gotta do something". Check how he goes for the vertical suplex, and decides not to delay it like he usually does. THERE'S NO TIME. It's like a guy losing on points in a boxing match realizing they have to KO. Regal kicking out of the powerslam was huge. We all know that's Davey's preferred finish, but it's not treated like an automatic death move. And you can see him take that frustration out on the piledriver. That move looked violent as hell. Regal just tried to survive, and if you ask me this is a great way to keep a champion looking strong without putting him over the challenger. It's so much better than say having Randy Orton decide to just punch a guy in the nuts to end the match. Anyway, it's a good story watch it.


Holy balls, this is nuts. The apron spot into the corner tope was mind blowing. But unlike a lot of spot fest type matches this one is actually worked really smart. Pantera is actually using his dives to work a body part, which I can't say I've seen much of ever. More flippy dudes should watch this match to learn how to build a story around their dives. Just so many good spots all built around breaking a guys back. Definitely watch this one.

Hell's yeah, this one works fast with Sid and Steve Williams bringing the clubbing blows and power game. It's big man vs. big man game, and it feels like you're watching two superstars about to put on a classic battle for dominance. Sid actually plays it smart after the hot start trying to slow it down and work methodically, but Dr. Death is too much for that, he wants a bomb fest until someone can't stand. It's a damn shame we couldn't get a finish here, but what we do get is a nice teaser and pretty solid Skyscraper beatdown that ends with Norman trying to console Steve Williams with a teddy bear. So it's a must watch situation.

One of my favorite matches from last year, Shuri plays the first chunk like a woman with determination and confidence, and it works for a little bit. She seemingly has Kana's number with some nice kicks, using them to disrupt Kana's technical attack, but eventually it catches up to her. Kana does some cool ground work, trying to twist up Shuri's legs to make her think twice about using them. I also liked the German suplexes as a defense to keep Shuri disoriented. There's some really good strikes in this, with some cool kicks to the face that look brutal. There's one that Kana nails and she shows so much glee, thinking she'd knocked the challenger out. That's the moment where Kana gave up on her gameplan of twisting Shuri until an eventual submission and got stuck trying to land a knockout. FOOL. Love Shuri's clinch knees that transition into that weird hangman knee that really works for me. My favorite may be Shuri's pump knee to Kana's face that pretty much turned the tide in her favor. Anyway, there's plenty of good stuff, it doesn't overstay its welcome, and it shows there's some good ladies rasslin' out there.Check it out.

Fun match that is a good lesson in ring dynamics when working tag matches. Buck and Arn do a great job of cutting the ring off down the diagnol, and Parker and Meng up the ante by not allowing Rhodes to run around the outside to break up any illegal shenanigans. The concept of just too many people gets built on especially well when Arn goes for a DDT, Ricky blocks it by hanging on the ropes, gets clotheslined by Buck, and harassed on the outside. The odds were just too great, and made even worse when Terry Funk skulks out there. My big dissapointment is that Dustin Rhodes lost the match on a TRIP. How lame is that? But otherwise a solid TV match to build the feud.

Two of my all-time favorite wrestlers putting on a great 14 minute match. Mutoh goes for instant kill in the opening minutes, and Fujinami counters with the intent to wear down the younger competitor with some tight headlock work. It works for a while, but Mutoh gets to show he's got some ground game with some toe lock stuff. The story here is that the longer this goes the more it favors Fujinami, who is more than happy to ground you and tortuously wear you down. Late in the match he decides the smart move is to go for the leg and just keep on that until eventually success. As soon as Mutoh gets an opening, he decides he has to go for broke again, because he can't win the ground war. Drop kicks, moonsaults, german suplex, he throws it all at the legend, but it doesn't keep him down. Last resort: FLASH PINS! I really love the inside cradle spamming. What makes it work is how fast Mutoh applies them. Fujinami has no room to get his bearing and is probably dizzy by the time the third one gets locked on. Great finish that really shows the "wrestling genius" of Keiji Mutoh.

Gotta have a blood feud lookin' brawl among all these technical heavy matches. So I'm going with Park/Wagner from earlier this year. The first fall brawling is inspiring. Really dig it when Parka is guiding Wagner down the aisle with heabutts and then just decides to toss him off the ramp. I always get weary of matches with crowd brawls because some assholes just grab a guy by the back of his neck and walk around to whatever spot they want to do. This felt like a FIGHT! I also really dig the long camera angle shots slightly above the crowd, where it looks like someone caught this psychotic fight with their camera phone. Feels like chaos. And Parka taking Wagner's face and slamming it into the ring post while on the top rope and later slamming it into the mat is a thing of violent beauty. The finish is wonky in a funny way, but I don't feel like it ruins the madness that came before it. One of the best matches of the year.

VADER vs. PJ WALKER(Justin Credible)
We gotta have a squash match, so I picked another Vader match because, duh, it's Vader AND it's Justin Credible being a jabronie! Vader lets PJ have his best shot before tossing him across the ring. Good times. We even get some good promo time after. Also, for those that follow my blog and my New Generation Era Project, you'll know this is one of many PJ Walker squashes I've covered. And if you aren't keeping up with my New Generation Era Project, get on the ball, Paul.


I know, I know, I'm asking a lot. You're probably sitting there on your computer going, who possible has time for that. And even if you do have time for it, you might not even like it. I don't know if today's audiences can even deal with a match like this. But I love this match, it's my fucking mixtape, and let me tell you what's badass about this match.

For starters, these two WORK holds. They don't just go through moves, and do so just fit in more shit. Each hold becomes it's own segment. Take for example the opening headlock from Billy Robinson. He wrenches on that shit periodically to make sure he's doing damage. This sets the tone for the whole match, because this story is going to be about two masters of the craft trying to wear the other one down. It's a test of will and endurance. Maybe the best segment in the whole match revolves around Inoki trying to keep Robinson's head in a leg scissors. I've seen plenty of good head scissor bits, but this one may be the best on. It just lasts so long, and Robinson's struggle is so desperate that the crowd actually cheers when he escapes - in a match against King God Inoki. That's crazy. And Billy sells it like that whole section really took a toll on him, which helps deepen the story.

When things pick up from the holds it happens suddenly and violently. Like when Inoki did that kangaroo kick, or when Robinson gave him that nasty backbreaker. They do a good job of breaking up the mat wrestling, while at the same time showing desperation and frustration in the wrestlers.

You also get a really nice story of ring placement. A lot of the work jgets maneuvered to the sides so that the wrestlers, whenever they get a good advantage, are too close to the ropes to create any real damage. Sometimes you'll see Billy decide he'd rather escape a hold and maybe slap one on in the process than actually reach out for a rope break. As the match is winding down in time, you'll also see Robinson roll to the ring apron to stall for more time, and if you were paying attention to the first match of the mix, Regal does the exact same thing. Showing ring awareness, and using rules to your advantage is a great way to tell a strong story that makes the fictional play or pro-wrestling more three dimensional

The first fall doesn't even come until around 40 minutes in. Inoki sells it perfectly too. He looks legit pissed and he comes out swinging to make up for it. He knows it's going to take everything he has to just tie it up, let alone get two straight in the next 20 minutes. Billy, he don't give a shit, he's fired up but knows he's in control, and that if he just sticks to his guns Inoki will make a desperate mistake that Billy can capitalize on.

The ending is intense, and satisfying, and the match as a whole is one of the best 60 minute showdowns you're going to see. Get a glass of wine(may I suggest Dexter Lake 2010 if you can find it, OR Dr Hermann if you want a Riesling done right), maybe put on a favorite album, and chow down on this one, because it's worth the time.

And after you watch tell post a comment about what you liked about the match. Wear your experience as a badge of honor among your fellow wrestling nerds.

Saturday, August 24, 2013


Grand Center Welch Auditorium
Grand Rapids, MI

This match is worth watching just for MOM's entrance and watching all these people in the audience waving their hands. Damien Demento is tagged up with a cat named Rock Werner. I wish I could have seen how those two ended up together. After some back and forth between Mo and Demento, Mabel got tagged in and scared off Demento. Damien had perhaps his greatest moment EVER when he just ran over to Rock Werner and threw him into the ring. Crowd was crazy hot for MOM and their beat down of Werner. They've got a cool reverse irish whip splash in the corner that works for me, and Mabel's DDT seems like an instant death move. Think about all that weight pulling your head to the mat, bro, think about it. Also, someone needs to reuse Rock Werner's name. That's a good name.

Mitch Bishop look frustratingly disinterested during his introduction. He just sat there chewing his gum like an asshole and then gave a weak fist pump and wink when they called his name. I like my jobbers to atleast pretend they matter. Adam Bomb gave some really nice Vader Hammers, and threw a great dropkick that sent Mitch to the floor. Bomb won the match with the slingshot clothesline, and after the match hit his powerbomb. Johnny Polo then counted another three to keep getting over Bomb's Atom Smasher. I really like the idea of wrestlers having a secondary finish that they beat jobbers with, and then having the big one that they use on superstars.

I'm only mentioning this because smiley happy Lex Luger, flexing his tits, and talking about USA this and that, is super annoying. I'm so pissed he went from The Narcissist gimmick, which was great, to this cornball shit.

Oh man, this match is hilarious. Red Tyler, who looks like serious business with his long, flowing red locks gets tossed back into the ring by Perfect after some scuffle on the outside. When Perfect tosses him back in he gives Red a super wedgie, which remains stuck up Red's ass for a long time. you can't even take the cool spinning right hand offense that he pulls out seriously. Eventually Vince picks up on it going "Oh my goodness, it seems as though Mr. Tyler is gaving a problem with his tights." At this point Mr. Perfect is seeing this, and he decides to make it even worse by picking Tyler up by his tights before giving him an atomic drop. Next thing you know you've got Savage, McMahon, and Jerry Lawler making wise cracks. Poor Ret Tyler. Funniest squash I've seen in a while. 

Simply Perfect
Bigelow gives a great bully promo, recapping all the events between him and Doink over the last few weeks. I like his little troll bait line "Doink. Just hearing that name drives me crazy." Which got the crowd riled up. Luna's outfit is off the charts awesome during this segment. She has cooler stuff any anyone on the roster, and she's so crazy that I can't imagine what real Luna Vachon would be like without all the makeup and crazy voice.

Virgil started out pretty hot on Steven Dunn doing some okay looking headlock work. Much like the Men On a Mission match it all goes to hell when the jabroni gets tagged in. Jerry Fox is magnificent though. He looks like a meth'd up Young Buck. His tights are white with black ziggzags with weird bits of rainbow pattern on them. He takes a good beating, but Well Dunn really don't have particularly interesting offense. Man I want Red Tyler and Jerry Fox to make a tag team called Red Fox, that just dominates the indies. Oh and it should be noted Harvey Whippleman has joined up with Well Dunn. He added nothing.

Kind of like Adam Bomb, Undertaker finished this one off with the chokeslam. But no post match Tombstone because he's got nothing to prove on this jabronie. Pretty nothing match. Rob Bell couldn't get up very much for some of the offense so it didn't look all that great.

Samu hit a great brainbuster that KO'd Nixon. He rolled him over to Bithera and just dragged Bithera into the ring. That stuff NEVER gets old. The tag team division is incredibly fun. Steiners, Quebecers, MOM, Heavenly Bodies, Smoking Gunns and the Headshrinkers is a solid group. Really want to see more interaction between these teams. Headshrinkers in particular seem to just being a holding pattern. 

A great show if you want to see some goofy as hell jobbers. The matches weren't that great and the Mr. Perfect one is the only one that's really memorable for ridiculous reasons. 

We get 123 Kid vs. Pat Tanaka, hell yeah. But before we get there it's Monday Night RAW, which will have Razor vs. Martel for the Intercontinental Title. CAN'T WAIT!

Luna's reaction to the Red Tyler match.

Monday, August 19, 2013



The opening stuff with Dean Ambrose and RVD looked terrible. Especially Ambrose's technical stuff. He doesn't work anything anything and he just moves in and out of holds really lose and lazy like. He's better off just brawling and acting crazy. The second half of the match was much better, but it never felt like it went out of second gear. RVD fit in most of his stuff, but, much like in TNA, there's no thread to connect it all to a bigger story. I think the DQ ending was pretty lame.

It's a decent brawl and the fire bits were cool looking. I thought the Family making it in killed the gimmick though. The after match beat down was kind of dumb too, because the stairs are pretty clearly not hitting Kane.

Cody Rhodes was fired up like crazy and I love it. He operated like a guy trying to prove something and earn a title shot, trying to kill Sandow as quick as possible. And his offense looks really nice. He's one of my favorite guys on the roster and I think his transition to face, at least in ring wise, has been pretty successful. He doesn't try to act cool, he acts like this is the most important thing in his life, and the genuineness is connecting to the crowd, at least it is in LA.

This kid wins at life.
GAMEPLAN WRESTLING. I love it. Del Rio comes in with a game plan, and sticks to it. Compare this to any of the matches before, and you'll see a deeper story with a sense of continuity. Del Rio is maybe the best heel in wrestling, he has good looking offense, he works over guys so they can get sympathy, and he shows his ass, so people don't think he's cool enough to cheer. Check out his miss on the rope assisted enzigiri. It's so showy so that everyone in the building can see him fail spectacularly. Christan does a great job as usual, and made some nice comebacks. The finish with the arm breaker was so well worked by both guys. Great match, go watch it.

This was pretty well worked by both ladies. Loved the slap fest and the apron bump by Natalya. The camera guy missed a couple of spots because they were cutting to Divas around ring side, but it didn't ruin anything. Brie is a pretty good heel and I liked some of her choices for offense, like the running knee on Natalya while she was in the ropes. Natalya didn't show enough fire for me until the very end, which was pretty good. It made me wish I saw more of that in the match.

Brock came through as always, being the baddest ass kicker in the WWE, and CM Punk took about the best beating possible. That toss into the announce table looked so haphazard and dangerous, and that's pretty much the match in the nutshell when it came to Brock eating Punk alive. Punk's comebacks were well placed, and they made sense in terms of what moves he went for. He had to go up top because he needed the rewards that come with the high risk, and unfortunately it didn't always pay off because he was selling the body work so well. They had to let Lesnar get a win, and this was about the best way possible to protect Punk. It's a Mick Foley formula, where you get the shit beat out of you but you try to look as crazy and dangerous as you can. I think it worked pretty well here.


John Cena had a solid night here, with how he played his character. He was like a jolly giant who was regretful that he had to beat the shit out of the lovable scamp known as Daniel Bryan. But when push came to shove, Cena brought the power, because that was his great advantage and no way was he going to let this little dude take the title. Bryan was the man as usual. Both guys knew how to make a show of most of the segments like the bridge stuff and the STF spots. Bryan's sit up in the corner was the best possible way of milking something and the crowd responded much the same way. There's something very Ultimate Warrior about Daniel Bryan, in the way he tries to draw in the crowd to back him up, and it's very different than any of the faces working right now. I do wish the arm work was built up a little more. When Bryan started working it, it was great, but it didn't really seem to give him an advantage in the end. They did so well building it up too, with the doctor at ringside who was worried about the arm, and Cena saying it's okay, but it's really not. It's truly a shame that didn't have a good pay off. But hey, I guess I'll just have to settle with Daniel Bryan getting a clean pinfall victory over the biggest star in wrestling. I think I can live with that.

I like this ending. I feel like Cena is going to take a medical break and then the WWE can get a real feel if Daniel Bryan can be top face. Now they can test out whether people will buy into watching Bryan chase the title from a top heel.
It's like someone photoshop'd Triple H's head onto Paul Giamatti's body.

Pretty great show. You get three pretty great matches for three totally different reasons in the World title, WWE title and the Brock/Punk match. You also get a really good Cody Rhodes performance, some decent Dive action and Dolph Ziggler winning a match clean. Definitely recommended viewing, and one of the better PPVs of the year.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013


Some guys were already in the ring at the start, Tatanka's intro kicked off the show. During the intros(Razor Ramon, Quebecers, and some others) Vince and Bobby were selling the Battle Royal concept and Heenan was in full hype mode. It was that kind of exasperated fascination with the battle royal concept that reminded me of his legendary call of the 1992 Royal Rumble. I think Heenan just loves Battle Royal matches. Macho Man got the final introduction and he immediately went up top and started dropping axe handles on Giant Gonzalez. Everyone else joined in on him to eliminate Gonzalez first. It was pretty neat with bad guys and good guys joining forces because no one wanted to deal with that big nakey son of a gun for very long. Vinnce cracked me up when asked "Who is that in there?" and he was referring to MVP(later to be Abe Knuckleball Schwartz). It didn't feel like a clever introduction it legit felt like he had no earthly idea who the hell that guy was. When Heenan told him, Vince was just like "Huh. How about that."

Mabel was pretty nasty, clawing Tatanka's eyes out while yelling "EVERY MAN FOR HIMSELF" at the
camera. It was kind of sad to see this lovable big dude, just lose his shit when faced with this dystopian last man standing type gimmick. Mo wasn't around and I wondered if maybe they had an argument before the match, making him feel cornered and alone. I'm crying for Mabel right now. Sadly Mabel was eliminated by Diesel not long after all this, which was a pretty crazy feat for the big man. It made Mr. Perfect look even better when he dumped Diesel a couple minutes later.

Bastion Booger eliminated 123 Kid. Yeah. I know.

Marty Jannetty had this funny story where he'd help Randy Savage out of tight spots and Savage wouldn't even say anything to him, he'd just go off and hit someone else. Marty would just look kind of dissappointed, as it seemed clear he was trying to make a friend. Poor guy,

Eventually it got down to the Quebecers, Rick Martel, and Adam Bomb hooking up to focus on Randy Savage and Razor Ramon. Savage and Razor looked at each other like "We gonna work together?" and the crowd was going APE SHIT. It's that kind of cheering where the camera is shaking, and it was all just because the crowd wanted to see Razor and Savage whip some ass. So damn awesome.

Savage eliminated Adam Bomb and the Quebecers w/ Martel dumped him leaving Razor alone to face the Canadians.The 3 on 1 beat down here is really great with the trio just hammering Ramon, and the crowd stayed hot as hell for all of his come backs. This feels like the moment that Razor Ramon became a super over babyface. Once he's able to eliminate The Quebecers the crowd loses their shit. The rules of the match state that the final two face each other in a match next week so we get Rick Martel and Ramon, which sounds awesome. I really can't say how over Ramon got in this match. In the post match stare down he had the crowd totally in his pocket. Great match and a great hype for next week's show. I can't wait to see what happens next.

Heavenly Bodies do all kinds of wild shit, like Pritchard slinging Del Rey into the ring for a flying clothesline,
or Pritchard flipping Del Rey over his shoulder onto one of the jabronies. Midway through Pritchard nailed a top rop spine buster because why the fuck not. These dudes are ridiculous. During the match Heenan said this Sunday we'll see the debut of a NEW TAG TEAM.... The Rock N' Roll Express. Oh yeah, that's the stuff. Anyway, Heavenly Bodies are filling the void Doink is leaving as best squash match wrestlers.

And as I say that...

The commercial may be bad, but the shot composition is really nice.
Doink threw a nice drop kick and a good belly to belly before hoping on Cory's back and rubbing his face into the mat. Vince put him over as one of the best technicians in the WWF, which makes me wonder if he would have lost his mind should Doink wrestle IRS. After a nice powerslam Doink nailed a Whoopie Cushion for the win. After the match Bigelow came out to talk some shit and pop some balloons. Staff came out to keep the two separated. Really nice bit where Bigelow picks up a red wagon and punches the hell out of it before tossing it in the ring. I thought he was going to break it in half with his fists. Man do I want to see these two wrestle.

Hella good show with a really good battle royal in front of a super hot crowd. Follow that up with a couple of my favorite acts in the Heavenly Bodies and Doink The Clown, and you get a pretty memorable Raw for me. Really can't wait to see the title match next week. WWE should really book more stories today that create bookings for the following week. It always feels like you have no idea who's wrestling that night until you get there, with PPVs being the exceptions.

Monday, August 12, 2013

The WWF New Generation Era Project: SUPERSTARS 10.2.1993

Oh man, I'm back. It's going to take me thirty years to finish this project.

Rick has this move where he picks up a guy and rams him gut first into the top turnbuckle. One time he rammed some dude's dong and dings into it, it was sad. This time the Tom Bennet got his neck rammed into the middle turnbuckle. Poor bastard. Then Scotty gave him a belly to belly and he landed on his neck again. I don't know what these cats did, but Steiners were extra shitty to them, which is fun if you like Steiners beating up dudes.


Borga got busted open without even getting hit. That would drive me nuts if I was him or Vince. I don't even
"There's no hope in dope"
know how it happened he, just started bleeding down his face. He handled it pretty cool though, wiping it off and flicking it at the fans. Nothing special, besides the blood showing up.

You can't make this shit up. In the middle of this match Vince starts promoting their first ever tour in Israel. During a match in which a man wrestling is named Irwin R. Shyster. Anyway, nothing much going on here, other than Vince continuing to put over IRS as the #1 technical wrestler in the WWF. He doesn't do much other than a toe hold and the Write Off. Gary Jackson was pretty disappointing. His selling had no life to it. Slightly less energetic than a dead body being electrocuted.

Not one of Bammer's best squashes. He did bust out the enzigiri to set up the flying headbutt. Other than that it was a lot of stomping. But this was less about the match and more about a set up between Bigelow and Doink.

As Bammer was making his way back up the aisle, Doink made his way down for the match and threatened them with a bucket of water. After a tease, Doink dumped confetti on Bigelow, who threatened to rip his head off. Luna continued to talk shit and Doink dumped water on her. Her reaction was freaking awesome too, like she was the Wicked Witch melting in the Wizard of Oz. Bam Bam tried to chase down Doink, which lead to some under the ring hijinks. Eventually Bigelow gets pissed at the jobber and beats him up. While he's doing that Doink, and I'm not joking here, ties a string between the guard rails and taunts Bigelow. When Bigelow gives chase he trips over the wire. Vince has a coronary from laughter.
Luna just found out El Gigante doesn't actually wear tights.

If you didn't know, Steve Moore is Al Snow, and can be added to the list of future ECW stars that were jobbers in the WWF. Al is his mugging goofy self here. He's a little soft and lanky looking, with some Roddy Piper blue tights. What really cracks me up is it looks like his torso is tan while his legs are pale. Other than Al actually looked pretty good. He didn't do a whole hell of a lot, but he showed a modicum more personality than any of the other jobbers. Jannetty didn't seem to give much of a shit. Set up his rocker dropper with a punch to the gut, which was pretty lame.

Reno Riggins and Del REy start it off with some rad counter move wrestling that leads to Riggins almost scoring an upset victory off of an inside cradle. Things go down hill once he tags in John Paul who's making his TV debut with the WWF. John Paul isn't too shabby either, but spends his time getting worked over pretty good by Dr. Tom Pritchard. The crowd actually got behind him and Riggins here, and gave a pretty good pop for the hot tag. The finish was quite nice with Riggins getting caught with a super kick after ducking under a Leap Frog. Del Rey wrapped it up with a standing moonsault that was about the prettiest one I've seen him do so far. Pretty fun match over all, and worth checking out.

A little weak to return with this kind of show. It was fun seeing early Al Snow, Steiners killed some jobbers in Michigan, and the Heavenly Bodies are still pretty sweet. Really disappointed with Bigelow's squash, but I guess he was saving his energy for the shenanigans with Doink. Oh well, we've got a special RAW coming up with a Battle Royal, so let's just look forward to that.

The Undertaker, Adam Bomb, Mr. Perfect, and Men on a Mission. Sounds like a good lineup to me.

Sunday, August 11, 2013


Yes I'm still crazy busy, but by golly Google has money waiting for me, and I gotta get it. FIVE TITLE MATCHES in today's mix, with the WWF and NWA titles both being defended. We also have a debut of Mastadon-ian Proportions. And in honor of the G1 Climax finishing up, our main event is a classic final between Rick Rude and Masahiro Chono. So pick your way through, hopefully you find something of value.

EDIT: I'm making playlists on you tube of mixtapes, so you can watch them here if you want:


Gotta open with juniors getting sprinty and who better than Rey Mysterio and Ultimo Dragon in 1996?  One element in this juniors match was the struggle for dives. For example Rey hit a hurricanrana that usually sends a guy sliding out to the floor, but Ultimo stopped himself and got up to counter with a german suplex. And later Ultimo was gunning for an Asai Moonsault or anything really, but had to settle for a running clothesline. It's moments like those that make the parts where they do hit the dives even more important. 95% of guys wrestling today DO NOT GET THAT. Usually it's throw them to the outside and everyone hit their big fuckin' dive and it gets a little old. But if they made it seem like a struggle to finally connect it, they'd get an even deeper reaction from the fans. But why bother with all that work, right? Anyway, match was tons of fun and the finish is sick. Someone should steal that slingshot powerbomb deal.

This is pretty fun with the highlights being Rush and Negro Casas being total assholes to each other. I love it when two wrestlers just look like they do not like eachother. Rush ending the first round by powerbombing Casas to hell worked really well me. Too often in Lucha matches am I disappointed in the the first two falls becasue they feel like throwaways. This fall felt like Rush just happened to kill a dude. Casas coming back later just to stomp on Rush's head was so cool. It's the kind of stuff that makes it feel personal. He's not just working a guy over for the audience he's wanting to jack him up. their action is broken up with some fun bits between guys like Super Porky and Rey Escorpion. They bring in some fun energy that plays a good contrast to the hate developing between Rush and Casas. The DQ finish may not be conducive to a satisfactory experience, but I'm so ready to see more, so be prapared for more Casas/Rush stuff in future mixes.

Stan Lane is in white Masaaki Mochizuki mode, deciding he is going to try and kick the hell out the Road Warriors. Loved when he realized he was out numbered and hit the outside to try and run Hawk off of a bloodied Bobby Eaton. Bobby Eaton's selling was pretty fantastic, the best part being when he finally got on the apron and just fell off. The finish was pretty slick, with Eaton suffering just too much from blood loss and eating a pretty nice lariat from Animal for the title change. It's quick but it's pretty fun and did a lot to keep the Midnight Express looking tough in a short bout.

This is slightly disappointing because of who's in it, but it's a pretty awesome TV tag match. There's a really cool bit of psychology with Funk and Gordy trying to toss Sting to the outside so they can isolate him and use the environment to their advantage. Sting is just to agile and quick for that, and everytime they toss him out he lands on his feet and gets right back in. He wants to avoid Funk's wild brawl game because he can't win that way. Gary Hart is really good in this section because he continues to support them in this gameplan, and wrestling is at it's best when the competitors look like they have a gameplan. It pans out when Dr. Death gets tagged because he's not as quick or agile as Sting and Terry is able to beat him down on the guardrail. While the match gets a little messy after this part, it's always interesting to watch. Funk is one of my all time favorites and it's because of this strange unpredictability he adds to his bouts. It feels less like a dance and more like a messy fight. Really worth watching, to see some good tag team strategy.


I could watch Greg Valentine elbow drop the hell out of Hulk Hogan all day. Valentine works over Hogan big time and it's pretty much all awesome on his part. Hogan's first couple of comebacks didn't have enough selling, but he did better late in the game, especially calling back to his leg. Loved that part when he sold it and Valentine, who'd just been tossed off the top, went after it and then had to keep selling his back. Pretty sweet. The finish was a little out of nowhere, but, you know, how much longer are we going to let Valentine beat the crap out of Hogan? I really didn't like the Leg Drop Instant Death, but he really shouldn't have been counted down because Hogan's crappy pin lifted The Hammer's shoulder up, so I can probably sleep at night knowing Valentine was the man.

No Mix Tape would be complete without a squash match, so I'm going historic here with Vader's first match in WCW against Tom The Whole F'n Zenk. Vader makes a badass entrance and then looks like a beast. That military slam he hit was some beast mode shit. It looked no problem whatsoever and you know Zenk weighed 251 as Jim Ross pointed out. Anyway, watch this and check out how much Vader throws his body into that splash at the in. That's the kind of stuff that makes a man poo his pants. VADER TIME.



Really fun two out of three falls match. Sometimes you just take for granted how great Flair was. His selling of the Figure Four in the second fall was beautiful and put Brett Sawyer over big time. Sawyer's celebration was pitch perfect as well. Regardless of how this would end, he and the crowd would have the satisfaction of knowing he made the biggest champion in the world submit. Flair's punches to Sawyer's nose are measured and harsh looking. Each one felt like it was mashing the poor guy's beak.

One specific element that makes this really fun is Flair being bigger than Sawyer. I can't think of many times where guys were so much smaller than Flair, and he actually worked the match like a bully. This is a slight deviation from his usual act of using wily veteran moves, cheap shots, and general wrestling skill. There were moments here where Flair was just imposing himself on Sawyer with power. It was pretty refreshing. Definitely hit this up if you're a Flair fan, and you want to see something a little different. Sawyer is tons of fun too, and if you're like me and don't know much about him, this is a pretty good way to start.


Oh hell yeah, two dudes knocking the piss out of each other. Kawada comes in with a pretty good plan, which is take out one of Hansen's legs. It works pretty well at first. Love it when Hansen tosses Kawada to the outside but falls down when he tries to put weight on the leg. Very cool selling there. If you're a wrestler you absolutely have to pay attention around the 8 minute mark at how Kawada and Hansen work the leg hold. Kawada has it locked up, and the two trade off some kicks to the face. It makes what could have been just a "rest hold" in the hands of some jabroni joe, into another competitive section of the match. Working the leg and working for position. It's little moments like that, that takes away the disbelief and inserts the audience into a competitive bout.
Hansen, is a lot like Funk in that everything he does looks messy, unpredictable, and very much like a fight. Dig the way he dumps Kawada off on the table, or the way he comes back with kicks while Kawada is down. It feels very sudden like he's working off of impulses and not just some pre-planned script. Kawada does really well as the underdog trying to scrap and his comeback kicks are timed so perfectly, that you think he might be able to sneak a win. He's slowed the beast down, after all, he just needs the knock out. The crowd here is crazy hot, and the action lives up to it. Watch this.


This crowd was hot as hell. This is a battle of endurance, with all the mat work being used to wear down the other guy. Rude has this tremendous physical charisma that plays really well to the back of the house. Watch how he flails when Chono is trying to pop his shoulder out of place. It may look a little cartoonish, but to a live audience that's something that connects to the very back row, and it's stuff like that that keeps the crowd engaged through out. Rude also has some of the best near fall reactions starting around the time he does the top rope drop kick. He just doesn't know what the hell he's supposed to do with this punk. Chono is technically sound in the beginning, but doesn't really start showing the fire until the last bit when he starts getting closer to winning starting after the first STF when Rude rolled out to the floor. It felt like Chono and the crowd both knew he had this one in the bag. The reaction of the crowd when Chono just rolled Rude's body back in the ring was hot and it was even hotter when Chono pulled him to the center for another STF. Rude tossing Chono out of the ring felt like he knew he was done and was just buying time, which fired Chono up even more to close it out with the flying shoulder tackle. It's a really good story and a heck of a match, make sure to check it out.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013


So as you may have noticed, I have less time to watch wrestling. Since I only get to fit in some youtube matches every once in a while I figured I'd collect the ones I watch and post it for anyone still interested in my thoughts about the rasslin'. I tried to format it like it was a real show. Short matches. Long matches. Strong opener. Heavyweight title matches go last. There's also a strong theme of people getting popped in the face. Hope you like it.

EDIT: youtube playlist link:



Find me a better Johnny B. Badd match. Eddie only has 10 minutes, so he goes for a lot of roll-ups and cradles, trying to disorient the champ and score a quick pin. Badd is the champ so he proves he can hang by countering some of the maneuvers and even throwing in his own aerial offense. The top rope sun set flip may be the furthest I've ever seen anyone jump to pull that move off. I mean that looked insane and Johnny B. made it look quite easy. Things start getting nasty when Badd starts throwing fists and drops Eddie with an uppercut. Eddie ain't having that and shit gets heated when the match devolves into a slugfest.

Love this match, just because it tells a pretty good story and both guys execute their parts really well. The time limit is something I wish was more prominent in wrestling, and I love how they work a match that feels like they're working against a clock. Badd just has to survive and Eddie has to go for broke. And when two faces lose their shit and start brawling it makes the belt even more important. They're willing to abandon their flashy personas to get down and dirty because being they're COMPETITORS and this belt means more money. It's the kind of realistic frustration that pulls a viewer in and makes it feel like two guys that are really wrestling and trying to win. Fun fun match.

Tell me it's not fucking awesome when Goldberg ninja evades that Glacier kick. Bobby Heenan with the best line after the finish.

Disappointingly short, with a BS finish. But what we do get is really sweet with Fernandez and Rude showing incredible physical charisma in the way they try to fight and eventually beg off from the unstoppable Road Warriors. Both guys were tremendous in this. Also Rock's flying shoulder tackle looks insane the way he hovers in the air for a split second after making contact. Can anyone do that like he can?


Kevin Von Erich with the best casual clothes on the planet. Late '96 Shawn Michaels wishes he could look that good. I just love the atmosphere in this. Crowd is screaming their lungs off, Kerry and Terry are throwing haymakers at each other, and Kevin's on the outside saying shit like "Don't worr about him(Hayes), I got him." It's like a back-alley fight over who some one cheating at cards. Gordy working Kerry's face with elbows and punches had to have been breaking girl's hearts all over the arena. The Michael Hayes shenanigans was planned out really well, and kept the interference finish strong. Fun match.

Daisuke Ikeda knows what's up. When a guy keeps punching you in the mush, the best defense is to grab him by the throat and head butt him in the face. FOR REALS. I like all the face punching. I like the submission counter that lead to the sick ass knee to the back of the head, and I like that it ended abruptly and under 5 minutes. Some good quick violence when you need it.


You can divide this into two halves story wise. The first half is Orton getting obliterated between the ropes. Backlund is the champ for good reason, and he schools Orton wrestling wise. I love the monkey flip to body scissor's spot and how that lead to Orton being scared to come at Backlund who was lying on his back. All Backlund had to do was stick those legs up like he was ready to lock him up again, and it eventually sent Orton out of the ring. Also check the really cool head scissors and how Orton loses his shit trying to break out of it, only for Backlund to crank it on him. Lots of wrestlers would have just sat in that move but they kept it looking like a struggle.

After the handshake is the second half, where they can't stop going out of the ring. This serves two purposes, to build on Orton being unable to compete with Backlund between the ropes while also building towards the eventual Lumberjack rules rematch. I really love that Orton didn't cheap-shot Backlund on the handshake and instead did it on the second clean break. I also love Backlund throwing Orton out and then stomping his head into the concrete from the apron. That Backlund guy is all clean cut and Howdy Doody, but when you start cheating he will jack your shit up. Of course we don't get a conclusive ending, because this is a build to the next match, but what we got was really entertaining, and never felt like filler shit. It was a real story, with a To Be Continued on the end. Big props to Orton who showed his ass really well, while still looking like a skilled competitor. Difficult balance that is incredibly hard for a heel to pull off.

Two of my favorite heavyweights right now. I know who won but I didn't how. Total surprise. I love that Akiyama went in with the game plan of "Kill this man immediately" and he blew it. Went for too much to fast and Funaki proved to be more lethal. Man, when these guys are feeling each other out and Akiyama blocks Funaki's takedown with a knee, it just felt electric. Good times.


Even though the leg work doesn't pay off to actual selling, there is a logical build from it. Hase goes for a specific game plan: take downs and leg bending. I love that his first couple of take downs get stuffed, but he sticks to it until it pays off. There's a really rad moment after he ties Hashimoto up like a pretzel and Hash counters out with a possible kimura. Hase rolls through into the ropes and the ref breaks it up. Hashimoto makes the mistake of showing compliance to the ref and Hase immediately crawls in to pick his leg again. Really cool spot.

While Hase may have been winning on points, he's not breaking down the legs at the pace he would have hoped and gets frustrated leading to him going for a stand up strike exchange. Against Shinya Hashifuckingmoto. Big mistake. Hashimoto is such a badass at just methodically breaking a dude down. It just looks legitimately exhausting to be on the receiving end of his stuff. The final stretch with Hase going for broke was nicely laid out and I love Hashimoto finding his opening by going back to those knees to the gut, which he'd softened up earlier. And man that crowd was hot as hell for Hase maybe winning the big one. Hashimoto's wheel kick was hellacious. Check this shit out.

Friday, January 18, 2013

WWF New Generation Era Project: RAW REVIEW 9.27.1993

New Haven Coliseum
New Haven, CT

Show kicked off with Jack Tunney telling the audience that Shawn Michaels has been no showing title defenses and as a result will be suspended. The Intercontinental Title will be vacated and next week a 20 man battle royal will be held to help determine a new champion. The final two participants in the battle royal will eventually face each other for the strap. Wonder what happened here.

Vince sold Martel as "one of the all time greats" which was nice of him. Maybe that means we'll get some more Martel matches.

This was a little disappointing in the first half. Tatanka was really clumsy and his timing was off. At one point he went for a step up to the middle rope but missed the rope, got angry and went for it anyways. The spot called for him to do a crossbody on Martel, but Martel wisely ducked. It worked out okay, and the announcers were selling it as Tatanka being to intense, which worked for me.

The Mexican flag is being used as a blanket to keep Tunney's naked legs warm.
Martel was solid as per usual. Had some fun back and general torso work. Liked his abdominal stretch, and his back work late in the match, presumably to set up the Crab. Tatanka Hulked Up, but Martel was able to knock him out to the outside to stop it. Smart guy. They battled it out there until the Double Countout decision. So now I really hope that means more Martel. Tatanka is being built as undefeated so Martel getting to take him a draw does more good for him than Tatanka. It'd be neat if they were the last two in next week's battle royal.

Ludvig threw Apollo outside at one point and found a fan who made a Helsinki Flag sign. Vince played it off by saying Ludvig had planted the fan there. Because who the hell would bring a Helsinki sign to a WWF event, right? Ludvig is almost a little too robotic in his movements, but I guess it works okay. I really love that he set up his torture rack finish by upper cutting the guy in the kidneys. More kidney shots, please.

Last week the announced this as "one night only" but tonight they announced that Snuka would be in next week's battle royal. This was pretty uneventful for a squash. Superfly seemed to be filling time to stretch it out, and the crowd was pretty quiet through all of it. They livened up when he pointed to the sky, and Snuka went for the splash. He it it pretty much perfectly for the 1-2-3.

During the match they had Crush on the phone. Heenan asked if Crush was in the IC Battle Royal. Crush said he wasn't despite being in the best shape of his life and ready to go. Heenan mentioned that Randy Savage was and Crush got pissy, saying that this was typical politics from Savage. When Savage tried to debate him on it, Crush hung up. I love this angle.

They cut to a satellite interview with IRS.Vince actually referred to him as Mr. Rotundo multiple times early on and then changed it to Mr. Schyster. Schyster, who lost to PJ Walker due to interference from Razor Ramon, hyped his feud with Razor and told him to stay out of his way at the Battle Royal next week. I can't believe Vince screwed this up.

The Quebecers announced that they were going to go back on their word and not defend the titles against the Steiners, but they will defend the titles against a worth opponent. Out came Barry Horowitz. Heena was in the ring and asked Barry where his partner was. Barry said, Reno Riggins was at home sick with the flu and that if it was okay with Johnny Polo if he could get a suitable partner. Polo said it depended on who it was. Barry hardy picked the 1-2-3 KID!!!! Of course the Quebecers were more than confident about beating the Kid and Horowitz so the match was on.

Barry and Kid cleaned house to kick the match off. Drop kicks all over the place. When it settled down, Pierre and Jacques beat the snot out of 123 Kid, which was decided the way to go. Kid was putting in some nasty bumps for the guys, and Vince sold it like no one could live through this. Eventually Kid started to make a come back and hit another spin kick on Jacques. This one sent Jacques to the outside to the floor. Polo got upset as it seemed that Jacqueshad been KTFO. He even called Pierre over to help revive him but it was no use.

123 Kid's educated feet had apparently taught Jacques a lesson in death.

The paramedics were called out and stretchered Jacques away from the ring. Finkel got on the mic and said the ref's decision was to allow the match to continue!!! EARL STRIKES AGAIN!

Back from commercial break Pierre is working over Barry Horowitz while Jacques is still dead in the back. Horowitz made a tag to Kid and Kid got worked over too - this is some Pierre is clearly superhuman. Kid started making another comeback but when he went for a flying wheel kick Pierre ducked and pulled the ropes down, causing Kid to fly over them to the outside. It was so awesome looking.

Polo rolled kid back into the ring and after a what felt like a decade, Pierre draped himself over the Kid for the 123. Horseshit. Barry Horowitz may not have been pinned but he still blew it. Break up the pin jackass.

Razor Ramon came out to hype his appearance in the battle royal, and Vince mentioned that Savage was in it. Savage told Razor maybe you respect me, maybe I respect you, whatever whatever(he said this), but only the strong survive. And this is how the show ended. Man I'm pumped for this battle royal.

The first and last matches got quite a bit of time, and both were a little underwhelming in a couple of areas. I liked both, but I wanted more. 123 Kid looked pretty badass despite his loss, since he can knock a dude out with his feet. And that last bump of the match was cool as hell. There was some good hype going into next week, which should be a pretty rad show. So as a set-up show this was pretty good. I'm really surprised at the lack of big stars on this show. Superfly might be the biggest name, but he hasn't been on for a while, and Tatanka and Kid were maybe the most over guys wrestling. Where's Bret? Where's Luger?

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

WWF New Generation Project: SUPERSTARS 9.25.1993

We kick off the show with a recap of Shawn and Diesel's action from last week, when they beat up 1-2-3 Kid before his match. Perfect, if you remember, came in to even the odds. After the recap Perfect came on screen wearing some sweet sunglasses and told Diesel and Shawn through the camera that he'd be in The Kid's corner for today's show to even the odds.

Try my flaming colon flavored wings TODAY!
Bomb savaged Kevin Kruger. When Bomb went for the Atom Smasher Power Bomb he stuck the guy's head between his legs and started shaking - staring up at the heaven's. It scary. Anyway solid typical Adam Bomb squash with dirty tactics and such.

Costello is a really good job guy. He's blubbery and takes fun bumps. He bleached his hair and now he looks kinda like Guy Fieri. Crowd was hot for Razor, who changed up his formula just a little, so that Costello could get a little offense in. The difference between Heel Ramon and Face Ramon is that the bad guys do the eye poke to him. Crowd was hot for Razor, especially when he just started slapping Costello. Man, Scott Hall is just awesome at building anticipation. Him wondering around like an animal looking at the crowd before signaling for the Edge had me getting pumped up. Fun squash.

Booger has some new music that kicks off with "I'M THE BOOGERMAN" followed by noises of him blowing his nose and shit. Gross. Exchange of the show comes when Vince says something about Bastion just looking like he smells really bad. and Macho said "Some things are as they look like." but it sounded like he got lost in the sentence for a second but somehow pulled it off so that it made sense. It's one of those classic Macho deliveries.

For some crazy reason I enjoyed this. Booger is just gross and he plays it up really well. And while not all of his moves look super devastating(his power slam feels a little soft), he brawls relatively well. Also he does headbutts, and if you want to get on my goodside do some headbutts. LOVE THAT MOVE. Anyway Booger won with the Bastion Booger Teabag pin. After the match he told the fans in the aisle that they made him sick. Nice.
Some Ziggler fans look on as Cena shrugs off all of Dolph's shit again.

Holy cow, Kid went nuts with the kicks in this match. Just berserk with the combos and spin kicks. Crowd ate it all up cheering after everything. There's no one on the roster like Kid and he didn't even have to go to the top rope to get the crowd hyped up. After a whell kick in the corner he beat the larger Jack Reno with a La Magistral cradle, leveraging Reno's girth to hold him down. Fun quick match.

Tatanka and Barry work really well together and worked at a pretty fast pace here. Tatanka did a back body drop where he bent over and stuck Barry with his should before lifting him up and tossing him behind him. He should do that more often it looks really neat and feels like a power move. Howowitz took control and got a near fall off of a reverse DDT, which got a good reaction. Shortly after Tatanka hulked up and hit Horowitz with the Papoose(credit: Heenan) for the win. Really fun short match.

These jobbers. Man. Brutal combo. Even Vince, as they were getting introduced, was like "Who the hell booked these guys?" Camera guy decided to take this moment to fit in shots of some attractive women in the audience and Macho Man almost went into the Danger Zone.

Rubins took most of the offense because he's so small his wrestling singlet hangs loose. Billy and Bart hit a bunch of nice double team offense including a suplex cross body combo. They finished it up with the back body drop piledriver combo. Loving the Smoking Gunns.

This looks like a fantasy from To Catch a Predator
Jim Cornette, Fuji, and THE CHAMP came out to state their thoughts on the World Title picture and their future challengers. Jim Cornette said Luger was done. The stipulation said if he didn't win the belt at SummerSlam that he couldn't get another one and it was AIR TIGHT. After him, as far as Yokozuna and his managing crew were concerned, there were no other challengers.

Then the lights go out. When they come back on The Dead Man is on the stage with Paul Bearer. Bearer explains that his Undertaker has a challenge. Yokozuna stared Taker down and yelled "Banzai!" The Dead Man responded by taking another step forward which got the crowd going. He took the mic and challenged Yokozuna to "Bring his belt and his soul and meet him on the dark side." Yokozuna's hard demeanor softened and he kind of stepped back a little, clearly freaked out. His belt came off his shoulder as he was readjusting it, and Vince pounced on it yelling "The Belt came down, did we see an OMEN!!!" which may be one of the coolest things Vince has done on commentary all year. Really fun show down, and feels like a huge clash of titans.

Fun show, with some fun squahs matches. The most of the jobbers were top level jabronies and the superstars brought some good shit, especially The Kid, who might become the best squash match guy now that Matt Borne is gone. And holy crap I may have turned the corner on Bastion Booger. MARK IT DOWN.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013


This is where I go over the exclusive matches that aired on All-American or WWF Mania. You can check out the previous parts by clicking on the links provided here:


TITO SANTANA vs. FATU (Mania 06/05/1993)
Tito was using his brains and countering Fatu pretty well early on, but made a fatal mistake by trying to slam Fatu's head to the mat. Fatu powered up and super kicked him to take over. It didn't last long as he made a pretty hot come back that had the crowd rocking. He hit the flying forearm but before we could see if it was enough to finish off Fatu, Samu interfered for the DQ. After a big beat down, Tito made another come back and cleared them from the ring with a double flying clothesline. Fun, brief match. The post-match stuff made Tito seem like a badass since he came back against two Samoans. That's some John Cena shit right there.

CRUSH vs. RAZOR RAMON (All-American 06/06/1993)
Razor is really awesome at looking weak for Crush. They start with a shoving competition - Razor pushed Crush first, and the big Hawaian barely flinched. Crush pushed Razor back and the Bad Guy went sailing out of the ropes. There's also a really fun bit with a full-nelson. Crush locks it in and Razor gets his leg in the rope, but Crush just lifts him up and takes him to the center of the ring. Razor goes to the other side of the ring and they do the same thing. Finally Razor goes to ropes closest to the camera and puts both of his feet on the top rope, telling the ref you gotta break this hold. So Crush just lets go and Razor falls on his back. Someone should really lift this bit.

Gorilla had some neat commentary bits, talking about why these guys would even take a match like this before the King of the Ring, and then wondering about how they should be wrestling smaller guys to prepare for their future opponents Bret and Shawn. It's cool shit like that that draws you into the world and makes you believe just a little bit more that what's going on is legit.

I'm really surprised Crush got to kick out of the Razor's Edge, especially if the finish was going to be a draw. Fun match though and worth checking out.

TATANKA vs. MR. HUGHES (Mania 06/12/1993)
It was mostly a standard Tatanka match, where he gets beat down and makes a Hulkster comeback. Hughes was fine as the lumbering beast, though he didn't offense to keep things interesting. Really liked him grabbing the mullet of Tatanka as the Undefeated Native American was running by, and the following it up with a big kick to the back.

For the finish, Tatanka and Hughes just started trading punches and the ref tried to break it up, insisting on a clean fight. Then they kind of just turned on the ref, Tatanka pushed him and then Hughes punched him so it was Double DQ time. Kind of funny finish, but nothing special otherwise.

Watch it here at

Dibiase get pinned in the first minute, after catching a middle rope clothesline from Scott. It was one of those blindside kind of deals so it worked. The second fall was belt around them isolating Rick Steiner which was great. They kept beating on him, and he just couldn't find his way out. Eventually Ted DiBiase stuck him with a nasty piledriver that looked liked it killed Rick dead for the 1-2-3. I really liked this because it really emphasized tactics and "wrestling logic". A guy can't win against three guys and if you can keep him from tagging out, you got him dead to rights.

Eventually we got our hot tag in the third fall. It was really cool too because it came after a clothesline on Doink, who sold it like a million bucks. He sat up and just looked confused, reaching to Scott and Tatanka, before passing out again.. Rick finally tagged in Scott and all hell broke loose as everyone paired off and the ref lost control. During the melee, Rick ran at DiBiase and lifted him with a power slam(which was awesome) and got the win. Jim Ross pointed out that Rick wasn't the legal guy, but the win was in the books none the less. Rad match, find it.

So this is a continuation of the Tito/Headshrinker feud from the match at the top of the post. This time Tito called in back up. Like the 6 man above, this one has some nice tag tactics with Samu trying to lure Backlund into the Headhsrinker corner, and Backlund telling him to come and get it in the center of the ring. It wasn't a long match, but it featured some cool heel tricks from the Samoans. The finish was Samu rolling Fatu out behind the ref's back and making the illegal pin.

This brought the STEINERS out who told the ref what really happened, and Earl Hebner came out to back him up. Referee Danny Davis, instead of restarting the match, reversed the decision into a DQ giving Tito and Backlund the win. Those Steiners are kind of dicks. The Headshrinkers didn't come in and bust up their victory in the trios match did they? No. Coz they got class.