The Name on the Marquee: WWF Championship Wrestling (1.12.1985)
Posted by Adam Nedeff on 02.21.2014
Hillbilly Jim is ALMOST ready.
Originally aired January 12, 1985.
-Your hosts are Vince McMahon & Bruno Sammartino.
TONGA KID vs. MIKE POWERS
-After a stalled push earlier in 1984, they hit the reset button on Tonga Kid and repushed him as the nephew of Superfly Jimmy Snuka.
-Powers attacks from behind but immediately winds up in a backdrop and a chinlock. Side headlock by Tonga. Tonga finally remembers this is a TV taping and breaks out the slams and clotheslines, and then boogies, because why not.
-Backbreaker by Tonga puts Powers into position, and a diving headbutt, and a pretty damn good-looking one, gets the win.
-Lord Alfred Hayes once again joins us at Studio 54 for the award ceremony. Cyndi Lauper and Captain Lou Albano are now joined by Hulk Hogan. Captain Lou apologizes to Hulk for any past wrongdoing, and they formally bury the hatchet with a handshake.
GREG “The Hammer” VALENTINE (Intercontinental Champion) vs. JOE MIRTO
-Valentine is without a manager at the moment. Vince notes that he and Captain Lou Albano have had some sort of falling out at the moment, but they don’t know anything more than that.
-Valentine throws forearms and elbows at Mirto. Valentine is more aggressive than scientific this week, acting pissed off about something, be it Tito Santana or Captain Lou’s ungrateful reaction to the thoughtful Cuisinart that Greg bought him for Christmas, but he clubs and knees Mirto before going for the figure four to quickly put him out of his misery.
-Gene Okerlund talks to Mike Rotundo and Barry Windham about their upcoming matches at Boston Garden. Rotundo cuts a fucking sleeping pill of a promo, saying that the Iron Sheik is from Iran, but he’s born in the USA, and as good as the Sheik is, he’ll find out what it’s like to fight a boy from the streets of Boston, or New York, or Chicago, it doesn’t really matter where as long as you’re born in the USA, and we’re going to show the Iron Sheik what the Americas has in it. Barry Windham saves it.
HULK HOGAN TRAINS HILLBILLY JIM, PART 2
-Hillbilly excitedly says he trained at home by bearhugging a tire swing, and he takes a drink of protein shake and says he’s getting used to the taste and he’s doing his farm chores a lot faster now. Hillbilly pops a few vitamins before they head to the gym.
-He hits the weights and Hulk makes him take off his hat before they get started. Hillbilly is still awkward but showing some signs of improvement. They hit the ring and Hillbilly runs the ropes like a champ this time, but Hulk still thinks he needs some improvement. He brings in jobber AJ Petruzzi and Hillbilly immediately crushes him with a bearhug, so Hulk has to call the training session for the day so they can get AJ some help, which is a cute way of getting the move over as a finisher.
-Gene Okerlund talks to Andre the Giant about the big Texas Tornado match at the next Boston Garden event. Junkyard Dog will be Andre’s partner for action against Ken Patera and Big John Studd. Andre credits Blackjack Mulligan with giving him the idea for the match.
MIKE ROTUNDO & BARRY WINDHAM vs. MR. X & RT REYNOLDS
-Armdrags by Windham on RT Reynolds, who devoted too much time to updating “Someone Bought This” to adequately train for this match. Monkeyflip sends Reynolds out to the floor. Mr. X reluctantly tags in, but Reynolds promises to make him Jobber of the Week if he does.
-Rotundo slams X down and Windham connects with a not-quite-flying-but-somewhat-airborne forearm. Reynolds tries to help but accidentally elbows his own partner. Airplane spin by Rotundo is enough to put X away. Post-match, Vince calls Windham and Rotundo “The American Express,” having learned nothing from his “Incredible Hulk Hogan” lawsuit.
-Piper welcomes Adrian Adonis & Dick Murdoch, who again talk about how they had the flu and were both wrestling against doctor’s orders the last time that they faced the Briscos. The Briscos are demanding a title shot because of that victory, but Adonis & Murdoch says they just have to wait in line behind the current #1 contenders, Frankie Williams & Jose Luis Rivera.
TITO SANTANA vs. PAUL KELLY
-Santana outmaneuvers Kelly early on and Kelly backs off with a really funny cowardly stance. Kelly gets hiptossed across the ring and armdragged all over the place. Headlock by Santana as Vince points out that Santana’s knee is still bandaged up, long after the attack he sustained at the hands of Greg Valentine. Bruno & Vince points out that he keeps using the knee for a lot of moves though, leading Bruno to suspect that the knee is back to 100%, but the attack messed up Tito psychologically to the point that he can’t bring himself to remove the bandages. Nice storytelling there.
-Tito applies the figure four to get the submission, and he has it clamped on so tightly that the referee has to help Tito separate himself from Kelly after the bell.
-We go to Hawaii, where the Magnificent Muraco & Mr. Fuji are preparing for the return of violence to the WWF, and the reign of Hulkamania is about to end.
KEN PATERA & BIG JOHN STUDD (with Bobby Heenan) vs. ALDO MARINO & JIM POWERS
-It’s always weird when Bobby Heenan just wears a normal suit.
-Jerk slam by Patera, which is such a cool-looking move and somebody needs to bring it back. Studd tags in and, feeling insufficiently challenged, he goes to the opposite corner just to beat up both of his opponents. “Andre” chant as the heat for these guys is off the charts this week.
-Patera keeps beating on Powers and then simply stands back and lets him make the hot tag so he can beat up Marino. Mistake, as Marino manages to connect with a series of punches that daze Patera. Patera manages to get him into the wrong corner and tags in Studd, who gets to work with a hiptoss that’s like a bodyslam from a normal wrestler, according to Vince.
-Another jerk slam by Patera, and the full nelson finishes.
-Gene Okerlund talks to Wendi Richter, who’s defending her belt against Judy Martin in Boston. Richter notes that she hasn’t been in Boston since she won the belt and she’s ready for anything Martin might bring, even though she hears Martin has been learning some underhanded tactics by training with the Fabulous Moolah. Iron Sheik hilariously shows up and shoos Wendi off before hanging his Iranian flag on Mean Gene and addressing the very intelligent Persian people of Boston.
-Back to the arena, where Vince McMahon announces that once again, they have been denied permission to show footage of the incident from Madison Square Garden and pledges that they will do their very best to deliver it on a future broadcast.
-The show closes with a graphic promising that next week we’ll see “The Incredible Hulk Hogan,” while the voice of Vince McMahon says “You’ll be seeing the…(pause)…unbelievable Hulk Hogan.”
The 411: Not a point that I usually bring up when summing up these shows, but the promos this week were tremendous. And the skits and angles and whatnot were fun too. And there was some wrestling.