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WCCW- August 20, 1983
by erick von erich

After a hiatus (aka "being lazy"), I'm back on track with WCCW recaps. This episode opens with the obligatory fluff from Michael Hayes and Kevin Von Erich. Hayes refers to the series as "the histrionics of wrestling" and how it provided the blueprint for the later success of WCW and WWE. I'll say this about Hayes, he's a decent salesman.

As we jump back to 1983, Bill Mercer runs down the card. It appears to be a filler "clip show" , yet it seems to be very bright in video quality. Don't let "clip show" scare you, as there's some good junk in here. But with some much going on in World Class Championship Wrestling, let's get down to ringside for...

Match 1: "Iceman" King Parsons vs. Michael Hayes
A bit of a flashback as we go to the Texas State Fair back on April 1, 1983. Yup, that means it's an outdoor setting. They lock-up and Hayes tries pounding Iceman's head into the turnbuckle. But Iceman, like the old cliche that pertains to 90% of all black wrestlers, has that Hard Head Super Power and feels no effects. Iceman beals Hayes across the ring, twice, then boogies. He whips Hayes in for a backdrop and two dropkicks.. Hayes gets a brief upper hand tanks to a kneelift. Iceman is whipped to the ropes and returns with a flying bodypress. Hayes uses the momentum to turn it into a pin attempt. Hayes then gets his feet on the ropes and pins Iceman. Quick match; about 3.5 minutes; but effective for what it was.

Highlights of Kimala vs. Bruiser Brody
Mercer narrates some of the recent happenings surrounding Kimala the Ugandan Giant. An older clip is shown of Kimala slamming none other than Andre the Giant. Then we jump forward to Bruiser Brody running-in on Kimala at the "International Rasslin' Star Wars". That leads to another clip from the Sportatorium (and one we missed in WWE Classic coverage), where Brody ran in after Kimala was brutalizing Rock Riddle. Jose Lothario, Chris Adams and a gaggle of referees ran into break it up, but Brody succeeded in knocking Kimala over the top rope. Mercer concludes the segment by claiming that World Class is becoming 'The Land of the Giants'. Hmm...well, it might be more up-my-alley than the 60's sci-fi show of the same name.

"Gorgeous" Jimmy Garvin Press Conference
Garvin is in his home (with Sunshine)...yet his "press conference" is only attended by Bill Mercer. Garvin is his usual goofy self, with an excuse for everything. But he now has ...gasp...computer print-outs of every wrestler and promises to defend his American Heavyweight Title, every week, against a "worth contender". Mercer asks Garvin why he needed to use an aerosol spray can to win the Title from Kevin Von Erich, but he brushes off the question.

Match 2: Boris Zherkov (w/Skandar Akbar) vs. Mike Reed
Yup, it's the former "Jim Nelson" and future "Boris Zhukov". Apparently, sometime between 1983 and 1985, he went back to immigration and got his papers adjusted with the proper spelling of his name. Zherkov starts off with...a chinlock. Since the Texas fans HATE all things Russian, "Go Mike, go" quickly busts out. Zherkov continues with some stomping, a side headlock and a side back-breaker for 2. Reed whips him to to the ropes, backdrops him, then tries two awful drop-kicks. Zherkov ends it with a reverse neckbreaker and a kneedrop from the second rope to get the pin. As bad as you would think.

Afterwards, Akbar is at ringside with Zherkov. He's signed Zherkov to take on Bruiser Brody, next week. If Zherkov wins, then Akbar will officially sign him into Devastation, Inc.

Match 3: World Class 6-Man Championship:
The Von Erichs (c) vs. The Fabulous Freebirds

(Kerry, Kevin & David Von Erich vs. Terry Gordy, Michael Hayes and Buddy Roberts)
Here we go.. this is one of their better matches. The 'Birds are accompanied by 2 "Johnny Reb" flag bearers, all decked out in Civil War-era outfits. Kevin gets the house mic and declares: "this isn't about Texas versus Georgia! It's about decency vs. filth!" I could totally hear Bobby Heenan saying: "that's not nice to say his own brothers are filthy". Kevin delivers an atomic drop to hayes, who tags in Roberts to chants of "Baldie". David tags in for some pounding and a kneelift. Kerry is quickly in for a snapmare and a flying kneedrop. Gordy makes it in for clubbering, but he's doubleteamed by Kerry and David with a backdrop. Hayes manages a neckbreaker on David and gets a 2 count. Kevin saves with a flying elbow from the second rope, then delivers drop-kicks to Roberts and Gordy to send them to the floor.

Kerry and Hayes brawl, until all 3 'Birds overpower Kerry. Roberts delivers 2 snap-mares and stomps away for a 2 count. Kerry manages a desperation sunset flip and scores his own 2. Tag-off to Kevin, who tries a charging splash, but Roberts gets his knees up. Kerry returns for a kneedrop on Hayes for 2, then suplexes him for another deuce. Then, all THREE Von Erichs come in for a triple-team drop-kick on Hayes! Love that spot. Just a great visual and something that should go into any "WCCW Scrapbook".

Kerry hooks a sleeper on hayes as all 6 men are in the ring. Kerry drop-kicks Roberts outside, then goes for a bearhug on Hayes. While the ref tries to restore order, Roberts sneaks in with his Loaded Headgear and headbutts Kerry. Hayes falls on top and after the 3 count, we have NEW 6-Man Tag Team Champions! Once again, the Fabulous Freebirds!

One more break and Mercer signs off. But tune in next week as Kerry Von Erich will take on Buddy Roberts!

Why'd You Tape This??
The clips were okay, but the main event was awesome. I believe that match was included on one of the WCCW "History of" DVD's. Just like that, the Freebid Slump ends. It seemed like things were slowing down between the Von Erichs and Freebirds, but then they re-lit the bonfire. Obviously, Fritz realized he had a good draw with the two teams and didn't want to end it. Nice little touch to feature Kerry/Roberts next week, as well. Kerry had seemed to focus on Hayes since the Christmas incident, but now he has a beef with Roberts, too.

If you can track down the main event by itself, then there's no real reason to see this episode. Outdoor matches are always fun and were a rarity in the 80's, but this one was less than 4 minutes. Still, I give this episode a solid recommendation as it's another highlight in the overall "History of World Class", due exclusively to the main event.

WWE Classics On Demand featured two WCCW episodes from late 1985, covering the "Holiday Star Wars" card. I'm not sure if I'll cover those, however. Primarily because they weren't all that good (the main event was a lame Lance Von Erich vs. Rick Rude match). So my plan is to skip over those and have my next review be the upcoming Aug 27, 1983 episode (or whatever episode is next in the WWE Classic chronology).

Boom-da-da-da-boom, da-da-da-boom, da-da-da-boom

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