WWF and Coliseum Video Present: WrestleFest 1990
by Scrooge McSuck
- Sean Mooney is our host from the Coliseum Video Studio, which is flanked with WWF Hasbro brand action figures. He runs down what we're going to see, including a profile on the Hart Foundation, and some mega-matches... wait, Mega Matches was another WWF Coliseum Video. Then he drops the term "Wrestle-Feast", so I prefer saying mega matches, instead. Cute bit: Mooney suggests we'll hear the Hart Foundation talk calmly about their profile, then throws it to a clip of Jim Neidhart freaking the fuck out.
"Rowdy" Roddy Piper vs. "Macho King" Randy Savage (w/ Sensational Sherri):
Taped on January 22nd, 1990, from Miami, FL. We're a day removed from the Royal Rumble, which explains Savage's unique tights (he only wore them otherwise at the Rumble). This can either be really good or spectacularly bad. They have a staredown while disrobing of their attire (insert obvious joke, here). Savage sneaks up with a double axehandle, but Piper practically no-sells and lays the Macho King out with a clothesline. Piper sends him to the corner, and hits another clothesline for a two count. Sherri tries to run a distraction play, but Piper doesn't bite. Piper with a sunset flip for two. Savage with an elbow, but he falls victim to a small package for another near fall. Theytake it to the floor, but Piper brings it back before we get a lame finish. Piper gets distracted, and Savage comes off the top with an axehandle. Back inside, and Savage with another for two. Savage with the hang-up across the top rope, followed by a running high knee, sending Piper to the floor. He goes to the top and comes down with yet another axehandle smash. Sherri gets some overly-dramatic cheap shots in. Back inside, Savage with a snapmare and knee drop for two. Choking, and another two count. More choking, two count, then to the chinlock. Piper escapes quite quickly, and comes off the ropes with a clothesline. Piper with a flurry of blows in the corner, followed by biting. Whip to the opposite corner, and Savage turns himself upside down, into a tree of woe. Piper with an Airplane Spin (there's a move you never see) for a two count. Savage counters a slam attempt with a pin for two. Savage with his own airplane Spin, faster and longer than before... and he falls on his ass to sell it. Savage climbs the ropes, slowly, and falls to the outside, still suffering from jet lag. PIper comes off the apron with a double axehandle, then pounds away with rights. Sherri gets involved AGAIN, so referee Joey Marella calls for the bell at 9:31. That doesn't stop the action, as Piper slaps on a Sleeper Hold. Sherri gets in the ring, and Piper gives her a sleeper, too. Piper continues abusing everyone, then starts whipping Savage with his belt. The official decision: Roddy Piper, by Disqualification. Pretty good for a Coliseum Video exclusive. There seemed to be actual effort from everyone involved.
WWF Intercontinental Championship Match:
Taped on February 13th, 1990, from Phoenix, AZ. I've seen enough matches between these two guys (two) to know this is going to suck wet fart if allowed to be any longer than 3-minutes. Warrior quickly plants Bravo with a powerslam, and comes off the top with a double axehandle. Warrior to the ropes again, but this time Earthquake pulls him to the floor. Bravo sneaks up for an attack, but Warrior no-sells it, and gives chase back intot he ring. They do a shoulder block challenge until Warrior outsmarts Bravo by taking him down with a hip toss. Whip to the corner and a slam, but Earthquake prevents Warrior from coming off the ropes. Bravo takes this opprotunity to clothesline Warrior out of the ring, but Warrior crawls under the apron. Suddenly, Jimmy Hart disappears, comes out with no pants, and gets thrown into the arms of the Quake. Back inside, Warrior takes Bravo over with a suplex and goes for the splash, but meets the knees coming down. Bravo pounds away, and grabs a knucklelock, with Warrior already on his knees. Warrior battles back, boots Bravo a few times, and sends him to the corner. Warrior misses a charge, and Bravo takes him down with a back suplex. Bravo measures Warrior up, and slaps on... a bearhug. Well, they all can't be winners. Warrior breaks free and slaps on his own hold before taking a thumb to the eyes. Bravo with an inverted atomic drop, but misses a leg drop. Warrior with a slam, and he actually sells the back. Bravo with a running high knee, knocking Warrior through the ropes. Earthquake is there to greet him with a slam, before rolling him back in the ring. Bravo with the Side Suplex, but we all know what's going to happen... Warrior kicks out, having a seizure in the mean time. Warrior unloads with some goofy shit, comes off the ropes with a trio of clotheslines, and hits a diving shoulder tackle and splash, but Earthquake draws the DQ at 8:15. Quake drops a few elbows to set up a Super-Butt Drop, but HULK HOGAN runs in to get in the way of things. I'm pretty sure this finish was recycled for a match on television. Anyway, lame finish and 30-second bearhug spot aside, a damn fine match.. who would've guessed?
The Ultimate Warrior © vs. Dino Bravo (w/ Jimmy Hart & Earthquake):
- Manager's Profile with the devious Mr. Fuji. He rambles nonsense. It's basically a lame 90-second promo to fill time.
Brutus "The Barber" Beefcake vs. "The Model" Rick Martel:
"From the pages of the WWF Magazine...", we're coming to you from Madison Square Garden, originally taped on December 28th, 1989. Here's a perfect example of a feud that had zero blow-off on television. From what I remember, Beefcake had torn apart some of Martel's designer clothes on an episode of Superstars, and bam, instant feud over style. This probably would've been a better option for Wrestlemania VI than Martel and Koko doing a worthless match and putting Beefcake over Mr. Perfect, but that's just my opinion. Martel plays the game of stalling the second the bell rings. Martel looks way too ripped for the body he was sporting a few years earlier and during his final days in the WWF. Martel charges Beefcake, but gets taken over with a hip toss and slam. Irish whip, and Martel runs out of the ring. Handshakes are offered, but it's Beefcake with the sucker punch. Beefcake applies a headlock, then jerks the head of Martel between his knees. Martel counters mounted punches in the corner with an inverted atomic drop. Martel with some choking, followed by stomps to the lower back. Snapmare into a reverse chinlock by the Model. Gorilla and HBJ must be bored, because they talk about the fairness of the (somewhat) recently reinstated referee, Danny Davis, who is in the ring for the match, just to let everyone know. We get the "if his arm drops one more time..." crap, with Beefcake having a seizure to try and sell his miracle comeback. Beefcake with elbows to the midsection, followed by a shoulder block. He tries for another, but Martel drives a knee into his gut, then drops a knee across the chest for a two count. Martel stomps the back some more, but Beefcake keeps fighting back. Beefcake with a surprise small package for a two count. Martel with more stomping, followed by a side back breaker. He heads to the top rope, but Beefcake manages to shake the ropes and crotch him across the top turnbuckle. Beefcake, who has no sense of a high spot, simply punches Martel to bring him down from the turnbuckle. Beefcake with an inverted atomic drop, followed by a regular atomic drop and a clothesline, sending him out of the ring. Beefcake follows him out and does the usual garbage stuff he can do. Beefcake tries a sunset flip back into the ring, but Martel blocks, grabs the ropes, and gets the three count at 12:38. The referee tries to question Martel about it after the match, but we just get a slugfest until Beefcake traps him in the sleeper hold. No haircut, though, with a little help being woken up by Bobby Heenan. Match was just not very good.
The Hart Foundation vs. The Powers of Pain (w/ Mr. Fuji):
(Bret Hart & Jim Neidhart vs. The Barbarian & The Warlord)
Part 1 of 3 of the Hart Foundation Profile. Taped on January 23rd, 1990 from Ft. Myers, FL, and broadcasted on the February 5th episode of Prime Time Wrestling. Yawn and you'll miss Tony Schiavone's voice still present on a WWF release (I'm pretty sure he had left the company by the time this tape was released). Neidhart and Barbarian start with a staredown of high intensity. They fight over headlocks and shoulder tackles, with no one with a clear advantage, We get heel miscommunication, and Neidhart rolls Barbarian up for two. Bret pounds away with rights. Neidhart gets the blind tag and clotheslines him for a two count. The Foundation take turns working the arm. Barbarian escapes with a slam to Hart, but Warlord quickly misses an elbow drop, and has his arm worked over now. They do an illegal switch, but there's nothing going on worth a damn to make it cool. Warlord finally escapes with a back breaker on Hart. Barbarian with a headbutt to the back, followed by a big boot. He takes a cheap shot at Neidhart on the apron for the hell of it. Warlord pounds on Hart with some of the most boring offense you could imagine from a non-scrub. Barbarian with another lazy headbutt and clubberin' blows. He eats boot on a charge attempt, and Neidhart gets the "hot" tag. He pounds away on both men, then bowls through them with clotheslines. Neidhart covers the illegal man for two, then the action spills to the floor. Heel miscommuncation takes place again, and Neidhart rolls back in for the lame Count-Out victory at 10:33. Not worth the 11-minutes it took to watch. It's bad enough that everyone was in low gear, but you don't know dull until you've seen Warlord and Barbarian in it.
The Hart Foundation vs. The Honkytonk Man & Dino Bravo (w/ Jimmy Hart):
What the hell is this team-up of Bravo and Honkytonk Man? Taped on August 8th, 1989 from Oakland, CA, and later broadcasted on the August 21st episode of Prime Time Wrestling. Bret and Bravo start. Bret quickly grabs a headlock, but a shoudler tackle goes 100% in the way of Bravo. Bret surprises him with a small package for two. Bravo with a headbutt to the midsection, followed by boots. Whip to the ropes, Bret escapes a slam and sends him into a Neidhart clothesline, and hits his own for two. Bret with a Lou Thesz Press for another two count. Bret sends Bravo into the corner with a dropkick, and now it's Honky's turn to take a beating. Neidhart with shoulders to the midsection, then slaps on a bearhug. Honky goes to the eyes to force a break. Bravo in with an inverted atomic drop, followed by a cheap shot to the Hitman. Neidhart takes a double teaming while the referee distracts himself with Hart. Honky with a pair of elbows, and it's chinlock time. Neidhart looks like he's about to upchuck. Bravo tags in, and a scoop slam gets two. Honky and Bravo with more double teaming, but nothing remarkable enough to comment on. Bravo with another slam, followed by a jumping elbow drop. Honky tags in and signals for the finish, but he ends up missing a fist drop. Bret gets the hot tag, and goes to work on the midsection of the former IC Champion. Bret with a slam and elbow drop. Bravo walks into a dropkick, and Bret rolls Honky up for two. Bret with another slam, followed by a second rope elbow. Bravo comes in to break a pin attempt, which triggers a brawl. The megaphone gets involved too, and Neidhart uses it to give the Disqualification victory to Honky-Bravo at 8:57. Mostly a paint-by-numbers formula, but it's still better than the slop we got in the previous match from the Powers of Pain.
The Hart Foundation vs. The Rockers:
(Bret Hart & Jim Neidhart vs. Shawn Michaels & Marty Jannetty)
Taped on August 29th, 1989 (my 4th birthday!), from Springfield, MA, and later broadcasted on the September 11th episode of Prime Time Wrestling. This has a chance to be pretty good, depending on the motivation levels of everyone involved. Jannetty and Bret start. Lockup into the ropes, and Bret gives a clean break. Jannetty with a side headlock, and a criss-cross ends with a body press for two. Jannetty with an arm drag, then into the armbar. Michaels tags in, comes off the top with an axehandle, and takes over working the arm. Criss-cross sequence, Hart with an inverted atomic drop. Neidhart tags in and plants Michaels with a hard slam for two. Whip to the ropes, and Hart nails Michaels with a knee to the back. Bret comes in illegally and connects with a back breaker. Neidhart with a snapmare, and he settles into a chinlock. Michaels escapes with elbows to the midsection, but runs right into a bearhug. Whip to the ropes, and Michaels counters a hip toss attempt with a slam. Bret gets up first though, dropping an elbow across the back of the head. They trade blows in the corner, with Bret gaining the upperhand. Neidhart in with a standing dropkick (to a decent pop) for a two count. Whip to the ropes, and a back drop sends Michaels off camera for another two. Bret with a snapmare, followed by an elbow drop. Bret with a slam, and he slingshots Neidhart in, who ends up missing a splash. Whip to the corner, Bret with a boot to the face, but he misses a second rope elbow drop. Jannetty gets the tag, and quickly connects with a diving elbow. Whip to the ropes, and Jannetty with a dropkick, followed by a powerslam for two, broken up by the Anvil. Whip to the corner, and we get an awkward double clothesline spot. Whip to the ropes, and Jannetty with a fist to the midsection, followed by a running knee lift for two. Michaels tags back in, and they connect with a double crescent kick for another two count. Michaels with a suplex for two. Whip to the corner, and Bret charges out with a clothesline. Neidhart tags in, and bulldozes Michaels across the ring. Whip to the ropes, and Neidhart accidentally knocks Hart into the security rail. Suddenly, the Fabulous Rougeaus hit the ring to attack the Rockers, and the match is thrown out at around the 11:30 mark. The Foundation and Rockers join forces to clear the Rougeaus from the ring, becuase they're good guys. Lame finish, again. Took a while to get going, but developed into a solid formula match. The Foundation always seemed to have more fire working with other face teams, and getting subtle heel stuff into the match.
WWF Championship Match:
Pulled from the January 15th, 1990 card held at Madison Square Garden. I did do a review of that show, but 1.) I didn't really care for it, and 2.) I think this version is clipped, so I don't want to give a false version out there, so we'll suck it up and sit through it again. Perfect bails to start. Lockup, and Hogan shoves Perfect to the corner. Lockup, Hogan with a hip toss, followed by a pair of slams, forcing Perfect out of the ring for another breather. Hogan follows, and it's a double noggin-knocker! Hogan gives the Genius a slam, and sends him into the ring for whatever reason. He gets double teamed (no DQ?), but no-sells it and cleans house. Perfect and Genius are definitely competing to see who can over-sell more. To the corner, and Hogan knocks Perfect to the floor with an elbow. We get a weird clip, with Perfect taking control of the action. He goes for the Perfect-Plex, but that only gets a two count. Hogan goes through his routine, no-selling Perfect's offense. Hogan with roundhouse rights and a big boot, knocking Perfect to the floor. He drags Hogan out for a slugfest, won by Perfect thanks to a rake of the eyes. Perfect with a chair, and he misses, hitting the post, instead. Perfect uses a hidden weapon to lay Hogan out on the floor, but even that can't keep him down for the Count-Out. Back inside, Hogan knocks Hennig on his ass, grabs the weapon, and lays Perfect out with it. Hogan with the leg drop, but the referee calls for the bell at a clipped 6:11, and it's a Disqualification victory for Mr. Perfect. Hogan argues, despite the weapon STILL IN HIS HANDS. I don't know if there's a glitch in the stream, but either way, the full match is good, but this clipped version isn't too bad, either.
Hulk Hogan © vs. Mr. Perfect (w/ The Genius):
The Ultimate Warrior (IC Champion) & Jake "The Snake" Roberts vs. "Million $ Man" Ted Dibiase & Akeem (w/ Slick & Virgil):
Special Referee: Big Boss Man
Taped on March 6th, 1990, from the Arco Arena in Sacramento, CA. Well, if this isn't the definition of "thrown together match for bored crowd at a marathon T.V. taping." Random uppercard tag teams with a weird choice for "special referee". Roberts quickly goes to work on the arm of Dibiase, so we know this will be short. Dibiase escapes, clubbing the back of the neck. They fight over a wristlock, with the same end result. Dibiase with a side headlock, and Roberts comes back with jabs. He goes for a DDT, but Dibiase rolls out of the ring. Back inside, Roberts sends Dibiase to the corner, and goes back to work on the arm. Roberts with an elbow to the face, and another failed DDT attempt. Dibiase takes Roberts over with a hip toss, then tags out to Akeem. He quickly misses an elbow, and falls victim to double teaming of Warrior and Roberts. Warrior comes off the ropes with a diving shoulder tackle. Whip to the corner, and Warrior boots a a charging Akeem, then takes him down with a clothesline. Roberts goes for a DDT, but Akeem counters with a back drop. Akeem whips Roberts from corner to corner, then chokes him down. Boss Man interrupts, because he's an unbias referee when it comes to his WrestleMania opponent. Dibiase comes back in to work Roberts over and taunt the Warrior. Dibiase with a piledriver, but it only gets two. Akeem comes back in to continue the punishment. Dibiase in with a chinlock, but Roberts quickly breaks with a jaw buster. Roberts with an inverted atomic drop and clothesline. The short-arm clothesline connects, but the DDT is countered, AGAIN. Warrior gets the hot tag, hits some clotheslines, slams Akeem, and finishes Dibiase off with the shoulder tackle and splash at 6:48. Afterwards, Boss Man joins in with the unnecessary beating of Virgil. Fun, harmless fluff to send the crowd home happy.
Final Thoughts: I'm pleasantly surprised by this one. While on paper, everything could've gone either way, most of what I was looking forward to actually fell on the positive side of things. Piper/Savage, Warrior/Bravo, and the Foundation/Rockers matches stand out best, while Perfect/Hogan and the finale are both fun for different reasons. Honestly, the only match I couldn't stand was the Foundation/PoP stinker, but that's only 10-minutes of a 2-hour tape. Give this one a look, it's not often you see a Coliseum Video this appealing.
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