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WWF @ Dortmund, Germany
by Scrooge McSuck
September 25, 1992
- It's time for another adventure in the wrestling world's Fan-Cam Fandamonium... that has a nice ring to it. Maybe I should make it an official series. Anyway, most of my Fan-Cam collection comes from 1993-95, the years I was mostly active a fan of WWF, and also when the WWF stopped running the local shows on MSG Network. 1992, though, is one of those years I just don't give much of a crap about. After WrestleMania VIII, my access to wrestling in general was almost non-existant. I honestly don't remember watching a single second of wrestling again until the last episode of Saturday Night's Main Event. Color me surprised Bret Hart was WWF Champion... anyway, long story short, I'm in the dark with most of the angles going on, and we'll take things match by match.
- Taped on September 25th, 1992 at the Westalenhalle in Dortmund, Germany, it's time for some WWF Action! We've got a moderately stacked lineup for this card, considering half the company was touring Europe while the other half was working the states. Odd they didn't include Davey Boy Smith, fresh off winning the Intercontinental Title in England, for this tour. I'd like to point out, for an overseas show, the quality is pretty good. Not amazing, but you must consider the destinations and at best this is probably a 2nd generation copy transfered to DVD.
Note: We're missing the Tag Title Match between the Natural Disasters and Money Inc. Sorry to disappoint all the people out there looking forward to that one.
Opening Match: The Bushwhackers vs. Kato & Skinner:
I swear, one day I'm going to look back and count every single match I've had to recap featuring the Bushwhackers. Throw them in there with the Warlord and Barbarian, and you have my Nightmare Survivor Series team. I call them the Suicide Enablers. The heels attack before the bell. They attempt to send the 'Whackers into each other, but the camera man has a hard time actually filming THE RING. Look at that roof! The Bushwhackers clear the ring of course. We calm things down, with heel miscommunication taking place again. Kato avoids a double team, but walks right into a double clothesline. Butch grabs a headlock, and we cut to Kato putting him down with an elbow. Skinner tags in and claws at his face. When he's not clawing, he's biting. Skinner misses a charge to the corner, and things get out of hand again. We get more comedy from the Bushwhackers as they clear the ring, again. Skinner nails Luke from the apron, so I guess he's going to play Moron-in-Peril. I'd call the action, but there's not much of it. Skinner tags in and immediately hooks a chinlock. Someone is really bringing their working boots for this one. Kato in, and guess what... chinlock. Luke gets double teamed in the corner. Whip to the ropes, and he somehow pulls off a sunset flip for two. Kato crotches himself on the turnbuckle, allowing Luke to make the "hot" tag to Butch. He comes off the ropes with clotheslines and a diving something-or-other on Skinner for two. All heck breaks loose, and the Battering Ram finishes Kato's night at 7:58. Thank goodness this one is over. I forgot how terrible Steve Keirn was as Skinner. Throw him in there to make it a 5-Man Team.
"El Matador" Tito Santana vs. "The Model" Rick Martel:
The never-ending Saga between Strike Force rolls on! This might be the last match between these two that exists on tape, so let's just say we're all tied at 500, and this is the 1,001th meeting... OK, nevermind. I don't think Santana ever won a match, so let's say Martel is going for the clean sweep at 999-0. This looks like some odd "Where Are They Now?" thing, with Santana becoming a bull fighter and Martel becoming a model. Lockup into the ropes, and we get a somewhat clean break. Lockup, and Martel quickly goes for a hammerlock. Santana counters into his own, but Martel escapes with a leg trip, then avoids a monkey flip with a carthweel. Show-off! Santana with a headlock, and a stomp to the face sends Martel to the floor for a breather. Martel with a series of knees to the midsection. Santana blocks being sent to the buckle, ramming Martel instead. Santana counters a leap frog with a big right, sending Martel to the floor, once again. Lockup to the corner, Martel with a cheap shot from over the referee's shoulder. Whip to the corner is reversed, and Santana is back in control. Martel charges, ramming himself into the post. Santana with a double axehandle to the shoulder, then wraps the arm around the top rope. Loud "Tito" chants throughout the match, to my surprise. Santana continues working the arm, bringing Martel to the canvas with an armbar. Martel counters with a slam, but misses an elbow like a goof, allowing Santana to go back to targeting the injured limb. Whip to the ropes to escape, and Santana comes back with a dropkick.
Martel with a handful of tights to throw Santana into the buckle, then follows up with some choking. Santana with elbows and knees into the lower back, no doubt to freshen Santana up for the Boston Crab. Martel with a gutwrench suplex for two, then settles in with a seated chinlock. Santana fights out with elbows and comes off the ropes with a sunset flip for two. Martel is to his feet first, and lays Santana out with a clothesline for a two count of his own. Martel with a back breaker, but the Boston Crab is applied too close to the ropes, allowing Santana to hook the bottom rope and force a break. Santana with a roll up to a distracted Martel for two. Martel recovers quickly to take Santana down, again. He heads to the second rope, and takes a fist to the midsection on the way down. Santana with rights, then mounts Martel in the corner for more punishment. The German crowd counts in English to help me out. How nice of them. Whip to the ropes, Santana connects with a clothesline, then takes Martel over with a hip toss. the Flying forearm connects, but Martel gets a foot on the ropes at two. BOO! Whip to the corner, Santana with a body press, and Martel rolls through for the three count at 11:56, making it a clean 1,000 to 0 sweep. In all seriousness, pretty good match.
Road Warrior Animal & Crush vs. The Beverly Brothers:
Here's a nice little rarity for everyone: When Hawk kind of went crazy and walked out on the WWF, they paired up Animal and Crush as an unofficial version of the Legion of Doom for a few weeks. Crush is even sporting a black and red singlet instead of his blinding florescent orange, yellow and purple look. Sadly he doesn't have his face painted. Can't tell you much here about any programs: The Beverly Brothers thing with LOD kind of died during the Summer when they were randomly paired up with the Natural Disasters, Crush didn't do much of anything until his feud with Doink, and Animal, well, obviously he's left in the cold. Animal and Blake Beverly start with a shoving match, won by Animal. Beau comes in and suffers the same fat. Blake catches Animal off the ropes with a powerslam, with little effect. Animal with a powerslam on Blake, and a clothesline for Beau to clear the ring. Crush tags in, and damn this is a hot crowd. Whip to the ropes, Crush with a back breaker on Beau, then a press slam for Blake. Crush with a full nelson on Beau, just for the sake of it. Animal comes in to pick Beau apart, now. He goes for a clothesline, but Beau ducks, and Animal spills to the floor. Animal takes a beating in the corner, due to the referee suffering from sudden blindness. Whip to the ropes, Animal boots Beau with his head down. Blake still gets in first though, and splashes him for two. Whip to the corner, and Animal comes out with a clothesline. Another double team attempt is countered with a double DDT. Crush gets the hot tag, going to wok on both Beverly's. He wipes them both out with a double clothesline. Animal takes Blake to the floor, leaving Crush to finish Beau off with the tilt-o-whirl backbreaker at 7:13. That was his finisher in the Wrestlefest arcade game! They celebrate their victory with Crush's theme playing, and it kind of sounds LOD-ish. Fun tag match.
WWF Championship Match: Ric Flair © vs. "Macho Man" Randy Savage:
I never quite understood the booking direction at the time... there's reports that the WWF didn't want Flair in the main events or as WWF Champion anymore, but switched the title to him anyway, before having him lose it to Bret a few weeks later. I know it was customary for a heel to drop the belt to a face (except in very rare occasions), but it seemed like it doesn't make sense for Flair to agree to be strictly a transitional champion, at least not at that point of his career when he could still be a legit main event draw (in WCW). Savage's program with Flair and Ramon kind of settled itself at Survivor Series, without a real finish, and the snowball from there just kept getting bigger. Ramon was still working with Perfect, despite being in the Rumble PPV as Bret Hart's challenger, Perfect was then put in an angle with Luger, who was also kicking off an angle with Bret... fuck it, I'm going to get a headache thinking of all these overlapping programs, so let's go to the match....
Lockup to start, Savage grabs a headlock. Flair takes it to the corner, gives a clean break and a big "Woo." Savage with another headlock, then a fight over a hammerlock, with Savage taking control. Flair with a drop toe hold to counter, but Savage rolls away and it's back to a neutral position. Savage with an armbar. Flair with an arm drag, but Savage holds onto the hold, so he simply grabs the ropes to force the break, instead. Flair grabs a headlock, then goes into a hammerlock. Savage quickly counters, and once again, a trip to the ropes forces a break. Whip to the ropes, Savage puts Flair down with a shoulder block. Flair with a single leg trip, but the Figure-Four attempt is countered with a kick. Lockup, Savage with a side headlock and a takeover. Flair sends him to the ropes, and again Savage with a shoulder block. He puts Flair down with a hip toss and slam, then takes him over with another headlock. Flair with a pair of knees to the midsection. Whip to the ropes is reversed, and Savage sends Flair to the floor following a press slam. After a little bit of stalling, we finally take it back into the ring, with Savage still in control. Whip to the ropes, and he takes Flair over with a back drop. Lockup, Savage with a headlock and shoulder block. Criss-cross, and Flair puts Savage down with an elbow.
Flair casually tosses Savage over the top rope, to the floor. Too bad this isn't Battle Royal rules. Back inside, they exchange blows, with Savage mounting the most offense. Whip to the corner, and a charge attempt misses everything but the buckle. Flair goes for a slam, but Savage counters with a roll up for two. Criss-cross sequence, and this time a well placed chop puts Savage down on the canvas. Flair covers for two, then quickly goes to work on the left arm. I hate to say it, but both men are clearly dogging it here. I was holding out hope that wasn't the case, but we're about 12-13 minutes in, and it's been sluggish from the start. Savage escapes to the apron, but gets his arm hung up across the top rope, and brought back in with a suplex. Flair gets a two count off that, then back to the arm. Savage fights free with rights. Whip to the rope, and a clothesline sends Flair out of the ring. Whip to the corner, and another clothesline gets two. Flair with a back suplex for two. He comes out of the corner with his signature knee drop, and it was so painful, it sent Savage to the floor. OK? Savage comes back with jabs. Flair to the top rope, and of course he gets slammed off. Savage with a pair of clotheslines. He hangs Flair up across the top rope, and covers for two. Whip to the corner, allowing Flair to flip onto the apron, to the floor. Savage to the top, and he follows him out with a double axehandle. Savage to the top again, and this time Flair catches him coming with a fist to the midsection. Whip to the ropes, and Savage with a small package for two. Hip toss attempt is blocked and a back slide gets another two count. Savage goes for a slam, but Flair cradles him for three at 18:32. That's the WrestleMania III finish, by the way. Shocked they didn't have Flair work Savage's leg, considering that was the whole reason, in match storyline, for the title switch. Total paint-by-numbers, which makes it REALLY disappointing when these two could pull off 4-star matches with each other.
Virgil vs. The Genius:
I love these European Tours, because it allows part-timers like Lanny Poffo some ring time. I think he made one last (televised) in-ring appearance as part of a 6-Man Tag towards the end of the year before being released. It's hard to tell, but is he reading his poem in German? Poffo offers a handshake (left-handed, of course), and Virgil accepts. CLEAN HANDSHAKE! Poffo celebrates with a carthweel. 2 decades later, Damian Sandow would honor it, constantly. Lockup into the ropes, and a clean break. Lockup #2, and this time the Genius offers a bitch slap. Criss-cross, Genius misses an elbow drop. Virgil with a hip toss and dropkick, sending him to the floor to recover. Poffo takes control with rights, but Virgil quickly comes off the ropes with a body press for two. Virgil with a cradle for another two count, then grabs a headlock. Virgil with two clotheslines, but he misses a third, and goes flying over the top rope in the process. Poffo with a takeover, and it's chinlock time. Genius with a slam. He climbs the ropes for the Honor Roll, but Virgil gets the knees up. The camera operator completely ignores the ring a bit until Virgil hits the side Russian leg sweep. Virgil with an axehhandle from the top. Whip to the ropes, and a slow motion sequence ends with Virgil pinning Genius with a crucifix at 6:32. Seriously, they were moving at the speed of a snail for that finish.
Bret "Hitman" Hart vs. Papa Shango:
I'm sure Gorilla Monsoon would consider this a main event in any arena in the country. Shango pretty much floundered around once that angle with Warrior bombed. Bret was in a weird transition of losing the Intercontinental Title and suddenly being picked to carry the flag as WWF Champion, which included needing a reverse decision to go over a Beverly Brother on Prime Time. What is up with Bret being so over in Germany? Shango attacks Bret on the floor, as he's giving out the sunglasses. In the ring, Shango rams Bret to the buckle and chokes away. Whip across the ring, and Bret takes it at full speed, of course. I'm sensing a short match, considering how it's going. Bret offers a comeback with shots to the midsection, but comes off the ropes, only to be caught in a bearhug. Shango continues to pound away on the back and trading off with choking. Bret fights out of a nerve hold, only to be laid out by a clothesline. Shango goes back to the nerve hold, but thankfully there's an edit. Bret escapes with elbows, then comes off the ropes with a body press for two. Shango's kick out sends Bret to the floor, where he remains for a bit. Bret comes back in with a sunset flip, but can't quite take the big man over. Shango charges to the corner, tasting boot, allowing Bret to hop on him for a sleeper hold. Shango rams him into the buckle to escape, and drops a pair of elbows. Shango climbs the ropes, and much like the Barbarian, you can set your watch to this missing. Bret pounces, drives a fist to the midsection, and takes him down with a leg sweep for two. Bret with a back drop for another two count. He climbs the ropes and connects with a clothesline for two. Loud "Hitman" chant as Bret mounts him in the corner and pounds away. Whip to the ropes and a body press is countered with a back breaker. Shango misses a charge to the coner, allowing Bret to roll him up for the three count at 8:59. Sore-loser Shango tries to attack with his Voodoo wand, but Bret rolls away to safety. Whenever Shango was in control, it sucked, but Bret's willingness to take a beating and his big comeback are always spectacular when he's feeling it, and he definitely was here.
Final Thoughts: Not too bad of a card this time around. I was highly disappointed by the Savage/Flair snoozer, which while technically OK should've been the MOTN, and the opener with the Bushwhackers sucked as usual. On the positive side of things, Santana and Martel put on a pretty good match that ended up being the best on the card, Bret Hart did his damndest to carry Papa Shango to a decent match, and there's fun in a rarity like Animal/Crush as the Replacement LOD and seeing Lanny Poffo working as the Genius one more time. Video quality is good throughout, with a few moments of camera operating retardedness, so if you're a fan of the era, and you're into fan-cam stuff, give this one a look.
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