The Name on the Marquee: WWF Championship Wrestling (4.13.1985)
Posted by Adam Nedeff on 04.16.2014
Another just-there week.
-Originally aired April 13, 1985.
-Your hosts are Vince McMahon and Bruno Sammartino. Vince says this week, you’ll be seeing highlights featuring “Cyndi Lauper’s Wendi Richter.” It sounds so weird that way.
GREG “The Hammer” VALENTINE (Intercontinental Champion, with Jimmy Hart) vs. DOC BUTLER
-A name like “Doc Butler” would suggest to me that you came out of the womb 65 years old with a cigar in your mouth. “Doc Butler” would also be a great name for a shitty sitcom about a doctor who has to moonlight as a butler to take care of his children.
-Valentine slams and pounds Doc Butler and works the arm. He tosses Doc Butler out to the floor, and Butler instinctively shows himself back to the ring, showing the lack of occupational focus that prevented him from ever thriving as Doc Wrestler.
-Valentine uncharacteristically works the back for much of the match. Elbows by Valentine, and then a figure four to finish. Vince promises that the rest of this week’s matches will be better. Doc Butler would quietly retire and return to his previous job of working at a bar and mumbling important information to private detectives.
-Lord Alfred Hayes, sounding like he’s in a constant state of having recently awakened, reports that Hillbilly Jim is recuperating from the leg injury he suffered from Johnny Valiant and Brutus Beefcake. Jim is now out of the hospital, at home, and using crutches to get around. Early reports said that he’d be on the shelf for six months, but now it’s looking like it’ll only be four.
DAVID SAMMARTINO vs. DAVE BARBIE
-Barbie spears Sammartino into the corner and beats on him. He misses a charge and David manages to get thirty seconds of offense without paralyzing his opponent, so he’s improving. Actually, seriously, David is working a lot safer this week, being conspicuously careful about the way Barbie lands on a series of suplexes. Powerslam gets three, and Barbie still has a functional neck, so winners all around!
-Gene Okerlund has words with the British Bulldogs. Davey Boy is sucking wind here as he explains that he and Dynamite are cousins and they grew up together in a coal mining town. Dynamite says he’s ready for all the tag teams in the WWF, whether it’s Nikolai Volkoff & the Iron Sheik, or Greg “The Hammer” Valentine.
KING KONG BUNDY (with Jimmy Hart) vs. ALDO MARINO
-Bundy has ditched the cape and the sunglasses by this point. Bundy does straight mat wrestling, taking down Marino and working the arm. Vince notes that Bundy is heavier than Andre the Giant once was before he got to his current weight. Well…yeah.
-Bundy clubbers away while Bruno mentions that Bundy gained the attention of the WWF after a match in Japan where he wrestled five opponents simultaneously and won. Avalanche gets the five-count.
-Gene Okerlund talks to a visibly sweaty and tired Ricky Steamboat. He mentions that every time Sports Illustrated and Time Magazine write articles about wrestling, it’s about the WWF. He says that wrestlers in other promotions have been saying that he’s washed up and past his prime, and that’s why he’s so sweaty. Conditioning is a priority for him because he wants to shut up the naysayers. He also mentions the South Pacific Connection, the tag team he’s forming with Superfly Jimmy Snuka.
RICKY STEAMBOAT vs. RUSTY BROOKS
-Steamboat is no longer sweaty and is clearly breathing comfortably. Everything I know is a lie.
-Brooks gets armdragged around but connects with a clothesline and holy shit, a dropkick. For anyone who ever wondered what Chris Farley would look like throwing a dropkick, we just got the answer.
-Steamboat fights back with chops and a move off the ropes that doesn’t look like it did anything. He basically bounced off the ropes and pushed Brooks, and then Brooks laid down on the mat. Steamboat goes for a pin and you can actually hear the tone in Vince’s voice after that move, like he’s thinking “Don’t be the finish.” Brooks kicks out at two and Vince seems relieved.
More chops by Steamboat, and a Superfly splash gets the win.
-From the locker room at MSG and taped immediately after Wrestlemania I. Piper and Orton lay the blame completely on Paul Orndorff for screwing up the match and declare themselves victorious because Orndorff was the only loser at Wrestlemania.
-We go to Wrestlemania yet again for the Women’s Title match, which is thankfully joined in progress. Richter regains the gold.
KEN PATERA & BIG JOHN STUDD (with Bobby Heenan) vs. JIM YOUNG & JOE MIRTO
-Vince notes that Studd is in a foul mood because not only has he been bodyslammed and lost $15,000, his world bench press record of 700 pounds was beaten, and the new world record is 705 pounds. Gosh, I hope this is paid off three years later with a fucking boring exhibition by Dino Bravo.
-Both jobbers try to collect the $15,000 and both fail. Jerk slams by Patera and somebody needs to bring that move back. Shoulderblock by Studd, and then he rams Young against the turnbuckles and knocks Mirto off the apron. Bearhug by Patera, but Young makes it to the ropes and tags in Mirto. Mirto gets some offense, but Patera goes to the eyes and tags Studd. Elbow finishes.
-Jimmy Hart brings in Jim Neidhart and King Kong Bundy, saying he signed both of them to contracts because Greg Valentine recommended them. Neidhart says he and Bundy are in better shape than any other wrestlers in the WWF.
The 411: Again, it's really REALLY weird how the month of April meant something different back then. Another total mail-in week, although at least Piper's Pit was leading to something.