The Name on the Marquee: WWF Championship Wrestling (8.10.1985)
Posted by Adam Nedeff on 07.09.2014
Paul Orndorff makes a friend.
-Originally aired August 10, 1985.
-Your hosts are Vince McMahon and Bruno Sammartino.
UNCLE ELMER (with Hillbilly Jim) vs. BOBBY WADE
-Elmer manages to out-Hillbilly his nephew by wearing a half-shirt with torn sleeves that doesn’t reach the waistline of his overalls, plus visible underwear. Hillbilly Jim grabs the mic and announces that he still doesn’t have medical clearance to get back in the ring and the doctors say it will still take a few more months, and then announces a big surprise for the fans…Here now, for shits and giggles, is Hulk Hogan, waving to the fans, posing, and then calling it a night.
-Elmer shoves Wade on his ass. He lifts Wade as if going for an atomic drop, but then just dumps him on his ass again. Belly-buster by Elmer, and the legdrop finishes.
-Lord Alfred Hayes profiles noted Corporal Mike Kirchner, who emerges from a swamp with a fucking machine gun and announces he’s on his way to the WWF. He says that the WWF has the most intense battles he could ask for, but they’re so intense that he doesn’t need a machine gun. So he throws it away.
-An OUTSTANDING commercial for the original line of WWF action figures, with Superfly Jimmy Snuka, the Iron Sheik, and Big John Studd ransacking a living room while Vince encourages you to flip ‘em like the big guys!
THE KILLER BEES vs. MISTER X & BOLO
-We’re informed by a graphic that this match is joined in progress, which is a shame because I remember Dave Meltzer saying that the first 37 minutes of this match were fucking tremendous. Luscious Johnny Valiant shows up on commentary to campaign for Manager of the Year, in light of how far he’s advanced the career of Brutus Beefcake.
-Bees work the legs of Bolo, a masked guy who strikes fear in the hearts of his opponents with his necktie-inspired name. Not only is this match joined in progress, but there’s an obvious edit during a resthold with Bolo and Brunzell, making me wonder how many wrestlers’ flights were delayed on the day of this TV taping.
-Bolo gets cleared from the ring, and Brunzell scores the pin with a dropkick on X while Blair “stings” Bolo to keep him out.
-Hulk Hogan gives a shout-out to the Bostonites, which is what he calls Hulkamaniacs in Boston because of their tendency to work all day and then party all night. Here’s an area where Hulk never really gets his due: He was INCREDIBLE at cutting local market promos. Every time he cuts one of these promos for the Boston Garden, he manages to say something that gets the city in his corner without coming anywhere close to a “this great city” or “these great fans” cliché. He’s ready to do battle in Boston Garden against his next opponent, King Kong Bundy, who “shaves his head like a martian,” but Hulk’s not worried as long as he keeps training, saying his prayers, and eating his vitamins. I think that's the earliest occurrence of it.
RICKY “The Dragon” STEAMBOAT vs. DAN RYMONTI
-Armdrags by Steamboat, followed by chops and a snapmare. Steamboat keeps working the arm until Rymonti begins fighting dirty and rotten-like. Rymonti throws a series of shitty pulled punches at Steamboat’s shoulder region, and even the commentators won’t put that over. Steamboat fights back with chops and finishes with the flying bodypress for three.
-Gene Okerlund talks to Jimmy Hart about the upcoming event in Boston. He touts Bundy’s victory over Tojo Yamomoto(!) in Japan and shows off a Hulk Hogan action figure. He makes the point that selling action figures doesn’t count for anything in the ring, and Bundy will be the new champion, no matter how many Hulkamania t-shirts the department stores have in stock.
HART FOUNDATION (with Jimmy Hart) vs. SPECIAL DELIVERY JONES & JIMMY JACKSON
-Brett (still with that pesky extra T) slaps SD and pays for it via an inverted atomic drop. Neidhart fares better with Jackson, clubbing and hammering away at him while Jimmy taunts him at ringside with his new toy, the megaphone. Vince says the megaphone is an unfair advantage and a distraction.
-Decapitator by the Harts on Jackson, and the Hart Attack finishes. Fink still hasn’t received the memo about the team name, though.
-Piper’s guest this week is Magnificent Muraco, who says he’s rejected requests to be a guest of Phil Donahue, Johnny Carson, Merv Griffin, and Richard “Belker,” but he’d rather be interviewed by a star of Piper’s caliber. The segment ends on a weird note, with Piper and Muraco swapping t-shirts because they admire each other so much.
“Mister Wonderful” PAUL ORNDORFF vs. A.J. PETRUZZI
-Orndorff enters the ring in silence. That entrance music was doing nothing for him. Petruzzi cuts a promo before the match, promising that he’s about to collect $25,000.
-Petruzzi’s first move of the match: a side headlock. Ya know, the bounty is just for putting Orndorff out of business. I don’t get why you wouldn’t just bring a weapon to the ring and go to town.
-Orndorff unleashes a beating on Petruzzi when Piper and Orton suddenly shows up. Orndorff, showing no fear, tosses Petruzzi to the floor, and Piper just tosses him back in. Piper and Orton circle the ring and tease sneaking in, but Orndorff manages to stay in constant motion, so he keeps catching them and they can’t interfere.
-And then Andre the Giant shows up and Piper and Orton both haul ass out of the building in terror, while Orndorff finishes off Petruzzi with a piledriver.
-Bobby Heenan says that he’s the Brain and he thinks you’re dumb. But if you want to prove the Brain wrong, don’t drink and drive.
BIG JOHN STUDD, ADRIAN ADONIS & THE MISSING LINK (with Bobby Heenan) vs. TONY GAREA, JOE MIRTO, & MATT SAMSON
-McMahon refers to the heels as “The Braintrust,” and I hate to say it but that’s actually a better name than “Heenan Family.”
-Studd clubs Samson down. Mirto tags in and goes for the slam, but can’t do it. Garea goes for the slam and he falls short too. Elbows and headbutts by Link. Link was so perfect for the WWF in the 1980s that it absolutely amazes me that he didn’t last.
-Samson gives it another go and gets slammed down by Studd. Powerslam by Link, and Heenan wants him to go for the pin, but Link doesn’t seem to listen and keeps wailing on Samson. Heenan gets frustrated and tells him to tag out, and Link follows that instruction. Slam by Adonis and he comes off the top with a flying elbow. Body vice by Studd finally puts Samson out of his misery.
-Gene Okerlund talks to Luscious Johnny Valiant, who says that he has a zip code and an area code. Good to know, Johnny. Johnny tells us that Greg “The Valentine” Hammer & Brutus Beefcake are ready for their shot at the tag team gold in Boston.
The 411: A hot angle with Orndorff, but otherwise, it was what it was.