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WWF and Coliseum Video Presents - Invasion of the Bodyslammers
by Scrooge McSuck
- Lord Alfred Hayes is hosting the tape, along with the Reverend Slick and Kamala, from what appears to be a Bowling Alley. Yes, it's those segments: Wrapped around every other match or so, we view Slick trying to make Kamala more like a man by teaching him to bowl, including struggles to get him to wear shoes and to throw the ball down the lane. The end joke? Kamla bowls a strike (off camera, of course). As for the matches, Jim Ross, "Macho Man" Randy Savage, and Bobby "The Brain" Heenan are calling all the action, even for stuff pulled from old T.V. broadcasts. An underrated trio. They seemed to have good chemistry, despite often having very little to work with.
Earthquake vs. Yokozuna (w/ Mr. Fuji):
Pulled from the January 25th, 1993 taping in San Jose, CA. You'll recall that the day earlier, at the Royal Rumble, these two mammoth Superstars had an encounter that went in the favor of Yokozuna. I should note this was Earthquake's last in-ring appearance until January 1994, so don't be too surprised at how one-sided this one turns out to be. We waste a little bit of time with Yokozuna's salt throwing and "Sumo" shenanigans. Earthquake responds by "quaking" the ring. They do the staredown, and a shoving match breaks out. Heenan actually references Earthquake's Sumo past. Earthquake puts the boots to Yokozuna and grabs a headlock. Shoulder tackle doesn't do anything the first time, but he rocks Yoko with a second and a pair of clotheslines. Yokozuna with an elbow and shoulder block, putting Quake on his back. Yokozuna hits the ropes and drops a leg. Whip to the corner, Yokozuna follows in with an avalanche, and the Banzai Drop makes short work of Earthquake at 3:43. Short and to the point, the best you can expect from a Battle of the Bulk.
The Nasty Boys vs. The Beverly Brothers:
(Knobbs & Saggs vs. Beau & Blake Beverly)
Pulled from the December 28th, 1992 episode of Prime Time Wrestling. The Beverly Brothers were well on their way into being a JTTS team at this point, but the Nasties were slowly crawling down the ladder of importance for babyfaces, so this is a fair match-up, I guess. Saggs and Beau lockup to the corner, and Beau with a chap shot to take control. Whip to the ropes, and Saggs comes back with a shoulder tackle. Blake runs in and tastes canvas for his efforts. Saggs with a hip toss and wristlock. Knobbs tags in, pounds on him a bit, then tags back out to Sags. They take turns pummeling Blake until Knobbs misses a charge to the corner. Whip to the ropes, Knobbs slams Blake down with a hair pull, then wipes out Beau with a clothesline. Blake takes a pit stop, and takes Knobbs down with a bulldog to show who's the boss. Beau with a neck breaker, followed by a double axehandle from the second rope. Beau with a snapmare and leg drop for two. Blake with a slam, but he misses a splash/heabutt/whatever from the middle rope. Beau cuts off the tag and pounds away. Saggs tries to interfere, but the referee holds him back, and this match is so boring, it can't even cheat right. Saggs eventually gets the hot tag and cleans house. Saggs with a leg drop for two, and now Knobbs and Beau get into the act. The referee gets tossed for the incredibly lame Double Disqualification at 6:47. As paint-by-numbers as you can get. Could you imagine sitting through one of these old television tapings, complete with the occasional superstar vs. superstar match with a bad finish?
The Undertaker (w/ Paul Bearer) vs. Razor Ramon:
Taped on November 24th, 1992, from the Nutter Center in Dayton, OH. Weird that these two were featured in at least three seperate Coliseum Video exclusives. At the time of the taping, Ramon was being phased out of the Perfect/Flair program for a title shot at the '93 Royal Rumble, and Undertaker was set to work with Nailz. I smell a bullshit finish. Ramon with some trash talking, followed by some hiding outside the ring. To Jim Ross, it's Mean Mark vs. the Diamond Stud. Ha Ha, see, that's my "humour" kicking in, referencing the last names these two worked under in WCW, before heading to the WWF under these personas. Aren't I a hoot? Back in the ring, Ramon puts the boots to 'Taker, and pounds away with roundhouse rights. Ramon still has a toothpick tucked behind his ear. Undertaker no-sells Ramon's offense, and climbs the ropes for his "old school" move that never really had a name, I guess. Whip to the ropes, and Ramon comes back with a boot to the chest. Ramon sends 'Taker to the floor with a clothesline, but he lands on his feet. Ramon pulls 'Taker to the apron, and gets hung up across the top rope for it. Undertaker chokes Ramon across the top rope, but takes his time to scare the referee, allowing Ramon to rake the eyes, and drop Undertaker crotch-first across the top rope. Ramon with a side suplex, followed by a series of elbow drops. Ramon goes for the urn, which makes Undertaker sit up. Ramon bashes him with it (behind the back of the referee), but it only gets two. Undertaker sits up, and plants Ramon with a chokeslam. Ramon quickly rolls out of the ring, and takes a walk, giving Undertaker the victory by Count-Out at 5:04. It could've been worse, but it was mostly stalling and punching, with a lame finish to top it off.
Typhoon vs. Bam Bam Bigelow:
Taped on January 5th, 1993, from San Antonio, TX. Typhoon actually hung around through the Spring, but he was in complete JTTS mode at this point. Lockup, and Bigelow goes for a waistlock, but Typhoon is too fat and strong to get a good grip. Bigelow with a headlock, and a shoulder block doesn't do anything. Bigelow tries for a body press, but Typhoon catches him and plants Bam Bam with a forward powerslam. Typhoon is officially doing better than the Boss Man did at the '93 Rumble. Back in the ring, Typhoon maintains control and scoops Bigelow up for another slam, with ease. Bigelow uses the tights to leverage throw Typhoon into the corner, and starts putting the boots to him. Bigelow slaps on a front face lock. Typhoon attempts to counter with a suplex, but the back goes out, and Bigelow takes Typhoon over with a suplex, instead. That only gets a two count, so he goes back to the chinlock. This wastes a little bit of time. Typhoon tries to fight free, but a rake of the eyes ends that momentum. Bigelow stumbles pounding on Typhoon, but saves it by bouncing off the ropes with a headbutt. Bigelow goes for a slam, but Typhoon shifts his weight, and lands on top. Typhoon comes off the ropes with a pair of clotheslines. Typhoon crushes Bigelow in the corner, but he chooses to do it once more, instead of finishing off with the splash. Bigelow counters it, lays him out with a clothesline, and the top rope headbutt finishes it at 7:38. This was way better than it had any right to... that's not bad mouthing Bammer, but Typhoon for his usual level of sucking. Could've stood to trim a minute or so of the chinlock, but the level of offense for two big men, it was forgivable.
- In a Coliseum Video "Exclusive", it's time for the Repo-Cam with everyone's favorite lone ranger knock-off, the Repo Man. It's basically him introducing bits from his introduction vignettes, reposessing items like a car and a kid's bike, because the payments were an hour late (see, because he's a heel, he will repo your things, even if it's 1-second late). One of the bits has Repo taking the car from an unnamed Bill Alfonso. Hilarious.
WWF Intercontinental Championship Match:
Bret "Hitman" Hart © vs. Shawn Michaels (w/ Sensational Sherri):
Taped on April 29th, 1992, from the War Memorial in Syracuse, NY. There's a city that doesn't like Shawn Michaels in the history books of professional wrestling. This one has more recently been rehashed for the Bret/Shawn Rivals DVD set. Lockup, and Shawn takes Bret down with an arm drag. Michaels with a wristlock, and they fight over that until Shawn pulls the hair. Bret nips up to counter, but Shawn turns it back with another hair pull. Bret uses momentum to escape, throwing Michaels through the ropes, to the floor. Shawn stalls, so Bret grabs the arm, yankns him back in the ring, and pounds away. Michaels escapes, but can't get out of the way of a charging clothesline. Bret covers, but only gets two, then goes back to the armbar. Whip to the ropes, Bret with a shoulder tackle, but a second attempt is countered with a knee to the midsection from the challenger. Michaels stomps away, then sends Bret to the buckle, hard. Not the chest-first bump, but it still sounds good. Sherri takes a few shots at the Hitman while Michaels keeps referee Joey Marella distracted. Whip to the ropes, and Michaels with a running high knee for two. There's a move you never see Michaels do. He settles into a chinlock as I ponder his using of that move prior. Bret with blows to the midsection to break, but he comes off the ropes and takes a crescent kick to the face. Michaels goes for his tear-drop suplex, but Bret blocks. Whip to the corner and Shawn charges into a pair of boots. Bret to the second rope, and he comes down with a clothesline. Bret with a reverse atomic drop, followed by a clothesline to the back of the head for two. Bret with a back breaker and second rope elbow for another two count. Michaels whiffs on a roundhouse right, but has enough in him to break a sleeper hold by throwing both Bret and himself out of the ring. They slug it out until Sherri hooks the leg, allowing Shawn to throw Bret off the apron, into the security rail, and pick up the lame Count-Out victory at 8:51. Shawn celebrates with the belt despite knowing better, and takes it out on poor Marella before Bret reclaimed his belt. As good as you can get for an 8-minute match between these two. Bret seemed a little bit in low gear, but Michaels looked pretty good to make up the difference.
Kamala (w/ Reverend Slick) vs. Doink The Clown:
Taped on February 16th, 1993, in San Diego, CA. Kamala was doing the whole "he's a human, not an animal" babyface turn that lead to him jobbing to all the heels, and Doink (still played by Matt Borne) was programed with Crush over being an asshole to children, or something along those lines. Doink comes to the ring with a mysterious box. I'm sure that won't come into play at some point in this match. Doink immediately offers it to Kamala, then takes it back...because he's an EVIL clown. Doink cheap shots Kamala, and takes him to the ground with a double leg sweep. Doink puts the boots to him, and tries to work an armbar, but Kamala keeps fighting him off. Doink comes off the ropes with a clothesline, and slaps on an armbar. Kamala finally mounts offense, hitting Doink with a crescent kick, and a pair of chops. Kamala knocks Doink to the floor with a big chop, follows him out, and becomes distracted by the gift once again, allowing Dolink to roll back in for the Count-Out victory at 3:21. Inside the box? Nothing. Aw... Kamala's upset, so he returns to the ring, pounds away on Doink with chops and headbutts, and hits the big splash. Match stunk, but it was kept short (thank God).
The Undertaker (w/ Paul Bearer) vs. Papa Shango:
Taped on December 14th, 1992, from Green Bay, WI. Papa Shango seemed to be filling in dates that was meant to feature the Undertaker and Nailz, and in a tidbit, this was taped the day of Nailz' termination for physically assaulting Vince McMahon. No matter what I can think of as points of interest, I know this is going to suck. Stalling, staredown, and Shango with choking. Check out the mullet on Mike Chioda. Undertaker returns the favor, backing Shango to the opposite corner. Whip across the ring, and Undertaker boots a charging Shango. Undertaker grabs the arm, and it's rope walk time. Whip to the ropes, and 'Taker no-sells a boot to the chest. 'Taker with a slam,but he misses an elbow drop. Shango with a clothesline, sending Undertaker to the floor. He tries to pull Undertaker to the apron, and gets hung across the top rope for it. I hate predictable spots like that, where you know it's coming, since the set up has to be exactly the same. Shango uses his magic wand to blind the Undertaker, but the referee doesn't see it. Savage claims we might see Undertaker's first loss... this WAS released after Hogan's departure, by the way. Shango with a chair shot, then sends 'Taker crashing into the steel steps. Back in the ring, Shango with his typical boring, cookie-cutter, generic offense. Shango with slams, and Undertaker sits up each time. Shango with elbow drops, and this keeps him down... until Shango goes after Paul Bearer. 'Taker sits up, comes off the ropes with the flying clothesline, and the chokeslam finishes Shango off at 6:30. That could've been worse, but I still could've done without it entirely.
16-Man Battle Royale:
(Participants: Tatanka, "El Matador" Tito Santana, Typhoon, Kamala, Bob Backlund, Owen Hart, Koko B. Ware, Shawn Michaels, Razor Ramon, The Berzerker, Terry Taylor, Skinner, Damian Demento, KimChee, Iron Mike Sharpe)
From the February 15th, 1993 episode of Monday Night Raw, a.k.a the show that saw Jimmy Hart turn face, protecting Brutus Beefcake. This is listed as 16-Man, but really it's only 15, with the 16th participant originally being the Giant Gonzales, but everyone balked at letting him compete. Their tune changed by October that year when the Intercontinental Title was at stake. Everyone piles in at once, with Razor and Shawn taking their sweet time getting in. Kamala and KimChee constantly play cat-and-mouse, one of the few interesting things going on in the match. Iron Mike Sharpe is the first casualty, courtesy of Bob Backlund at 1:22. There's a surprise. Koko goes next at 2:24, by the hands of Shawn Michaels. A whole lot of nothing going on, other than hugging and punching. Skinner dances around like a goober, so Typhoon clotheslines him out at 4:49. Kamala wastes Demento at 5:06. Owen climbs up on Berzerker's back and gets thrown out at 5:39 in a nice bump. Berzerker is the next victim of Kamala, at 6:17. Typhoon and KimChee join forces to toss Kamala out at 6:58. Kamala takes this not-too-well, runs back in, and tosses KimChee at 7:20. They run around the Manhatten Center in a cute bit. We return from a commercial break (heh...) and we're missing Backlund and Taylor. Remember when WWF Magazine ran a lame "letters to the wrestlers" article about them? Typhoon misses a charge to the corner, and gets backed out by Michaels at 9:06. Ramon and Shawn team up against Tatanka and Santana. After a decent bit of action between the two pairs, Michaels takes his elimination like a man at 12:01. Suddenly, the Giant Gonzales comes to the ring, and beats up on the faces while Ramon rolls out of the ring. Tatanka gets tossed at 12:47, and Santana at 12:57, making Razor Ramon the winner by default. Lame ending to the Battle Royale when taken out of context. Hell, lame in general. When the highlight is Kamala and KimChee playing a comedy chase, you know it's bad.
Tatanka vs. Repo Man:
This was originally broadcasted on the 1992 Survivor Series Showdown, but we've got new commentary here. Lockup into the corner, and Tatanka with a clean break. Repo Man pulls the hair, but gives a clean break, too. Repo with a boot to the midsection, followed by rights. Irish whip, and Tatanka takes him over with a hip toss, then connects with a pair of dropkicks. Irish whip, and Repo ducks out of the ring for a breather. We get an insert promo from The Model. Back in the ring, and Tatanka works a wristlock. Tatanka sweeps the leg and applies a hammerlock. Irish whip, and Tatanka wiyh a shoulder block, followed by a cross body. Tatanka with an arm drag, then slaps on an armbar, or as I will call it from now on, the Ricky Steamboat Special™. Repo escapaes with a knee to the midsection, but gets rolled up for a two count. Tatanka continues working the arm and goes back to the armbar. Tatanka chops away in the corner, but misses a second rope cross body. Repo hammers away and applies an armbar. Tatanka dances around the ring, but Repo yanks him back down by the hair. Tatanka escapes and surprises Repo with a tomahawk chop to the forehead. Repo to the second turnbuckle, and he gets a fist to the midsection. Irish whip, and Tatanka with more chops, followed by a clothesline. Heenan says it's the first time he's seen Tonto kick the butt of the Lone Ranger. Tatanka with a slam, then off the top rope with a big chop for a two count. Irish whip is reversed, and Tatanka fails at a roll up attempt. Tatanka ducks a clothesline and nails the Papoose to Go for the three count at 7:44. Not the worst match I've ever seen, but it was basically a squash match for Tatanka, with very minimal, very token offense from the Repo Man.
Mr. Perfect vs. "Nature Boy" Ric Flair:
Taped on January 4th, 1993, from Beaumont, TX. This is advertised and hyped on commentary as "Loser Leaves WWF", but THAT match is on the WrestleFest '93 video. This is just a dark match from a Wrestling Challenge taping. Lockup, and Perfect shoves Flair to the canvas. Lockup, and repeat. Flair with a shove, Perfect with a slap. We get a Larry "The Axe" Hennig reference, as Perfect continues to make Flair look like a jackass. Flair with a side headlock, followed by a shoulder tackle. Criss-cross ends with a Perfect drop toe hold and another bitch slap. Lockup to the corner, and Flair with a knee to the midsection. Flair works Perfect over and sends him to the opposite corner, complete with over-sell. Whip to the corner is reversed, and Perfect takes Flair over with a back drop. Perfect with a dropkick and clothesline, sending Flair to the floor for a breather. Heenan actually drops the term "jobbed" when coming to Flair losing the title, "having to do with politics (with President Tunney)." Back inside, Flair takes Perfect over with a snapmare, then comes off the ropes with a knee drop for a near fall. Flair with a series of short-lefts and raking of the eyes across the top rope. They exchange blows, with Perfect gaining the upperhand. Whip to the corner, and Perfect eats a boot. Flair to the top rope, and yes, he does get slammed off for a two count. Perfect misses an elbow drop, allowing Flair to regain control. He hits the atomic drop to the knee, and is quick to lock the Figure-Four on. Yes, he DOES use the ropes for extra leverage. Perfect eventually turns it over, but Flair turns it back, before the hold is broken in the ropes. They trade rights, as they seem to be playing the role of a 30-minute war crammed into 10, with the closing moments coming. Perfect takes control, pounding away with rights. He mounts Flair in the corner for some more punishment. Whip across the ring, and Perfect with a back drop. Whip to the corner, Flair flips up, onto the apron, and to the floor. Perfect follows, lays him out with a forearm, then tosses him back in the ring again, connecting with it again. Whip to the ropes is reversed, Perfect counters a back drop with the Perfect-Plex, and gets the three count at 10:51. Good match, but in comparison to the one they had on Monday Night Raw, which got nearly double the time this got, it's a bit disappointing. In the other hand, can't complain about how much they tried to fit into a 10-minute match.
Final Thoughts: Much like any other Coliseum Video release, there's a lot of ups and downs with this one: On the positive side, you've got a couple of pretty good bouts between Perfect/Flair and Bret/Michaels. The rest falls under either "watchable" or "kinda bad". Bigelow/Typhoon, Earthquake/Yokozuna, and to a lesser extent, the Battle Royale fall under the former, while the only matches that really stood out as terrible were the two featuring the Undertaker and the tag match between the Nasties and Beverly Brothers. The two good matches are good enough though to give a recommendation, and as a whole, the entire tape is made watchable with good commentary from Ross, Savage, and Heenan.
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