WWF Wrestling Challenge April 24th, 1988

April 24, 1988

From the Prairie Capital Convention Center in Springfield, IL

Your hosts are Bobby Heenan and Gorilla Monsoon. Also, this was the last episode of Challenge featuring Mel Phillips as the ring announcer. He was replaced the following episode, which took place in Springfield, MA by Mike McGuirk.

In action this week are Hacksaw Jim Duggan, The Islanders, Ultimate Warrior, Bad News Brown, and the Junkyard Dog



Junkyard Dog vs. Barry Horowitz

The announcers put over JYD’s feud with Ron Bass as Gorilla also accuses Heenan of being scared of Jim Duggan. The match starts with some stalling by Horowitz. We then get an insert promo from Bass, telling JYD he will meet him anywhere, anytime as JYD hits a hip toss. Horowitz ducks outside as the crowd chants for JYD. He re-enters but JYD catches him in a powerslam for the win (3:12).

Thoughts: They are still going with a JYD/Bass feud. The crowd was into JYD here.



WWF Special Report with Lord Alfred Hayes. This week’s focus is on Demolition and how dominating they have been since entering the WWF. We then see a clip of them beating Strike Force for the belts at WrestleMania IV. We then hear comments from a pissed off Strike Force, who want a rematch, and Demolition, who said they became champs due to the orders of Mr. Fuji.



Keith Watkins vs. Bad News Brown

Brown immediately destroys Watkins, who has yet to remove his sparkly coat. Man, Watkins is tall and skinny with a perm that makes him look like Rockin’ Robin. We hear an insert promo from Bret Hart, who promises to end Brown. Back to the match as Brown finally puts this guy out of misery with an enziguiri (1:35).

Thoughts: Watkins looks like the biggest geek on the planet and needs to be seen to be believed. They are still pushing a Bad News/Bret feud but have yet to really turn Bret face besides saying his attitude has “changed for the best.”



Gene Okerlund is in the Event Center, holding up a copy of the newest edition of “WWF Magazine.” He puts over the profile on Sam Houston as we hear comments from Danny Davis, who tells Houston that even his name stinks. We then hear from Houston, who wants to not only beat Davis, but hurt him as well. Apparently, this feud will not end.



We get a replay of the Andre/Duggan confrontation on “Superstars of Wrestling.”



Hacksaw Jim Duggan vs. Conquistador #2

The Conquistador attacks Duggan before the bell. Duggan comes back with a clothesline as Gorilla puts over Duggan taking out Andre as Heenan said anyone could do that with a weapon. Duggan no-sells an attack then fires away before geting the win with a three point stance (2:52).

Thoughts: They really are giving Duggan a strong push as he faces Andre. Its working out well.



Okerlund is back at the Event Center, where he sports the Duggan foam thumb. We then hear from George Steele, who promises to hurt the Anvil. We then hear from Jim Neidhart, who laughs while talking about Steele to plug their matches on the house show circuit.



And now, a brief package on Hulk Hogan accepting the Nickelodeon Kids Choice Award for “Male Athlete of the Year.”



Dino Bravo w/ Frenchy Martin vs. Omar Atlas

Frenchy comes out holding a “USA Is Not OK” sign then mumbles in French to draw some cheap heel heat. Bravo overpowers Atlas to start. Atlas comes back with a dropkick and a crossbody to zero crowd reaction before getting caught with an inverted atomic drop. Bravo hits a piledriver then toys around with Atlas until he hits a side slam for the win (2:12).

Thoughts: The crowd was silent once the match started. On commentary they really put over Bravo’s strength.



Craig DeGeorge is on the interview platform with Ken Patera, who leads the crowd in a USA chant. The camera shows Bravo looking on from the ring as Patera says that Bravo’s bench press record is bogus then talks about being in the Olympics. Patera then tells Bravo he wants to challenge him to a feat of strength as the interview cuts off.




Van Van Horne & Scott Casey vs. The Islanders w/ Bobby Heenan

Gorilla is solo on commentary. Casey hits Tama with a hiptoss as we see Heenan in an insert promo mocking Koko B. Ware after pinning him at WrestleMania. Back to the match as the Islanders destroy Van Horne until Tama finally puts him away with a top rope splash (2:58).

Thoughts: They appear to be going with a Koko/Heenan feud but for now the Islanders have nothing going on at this point.



WrestleMania IV Report with Gene Okerlund. We see clips of the Intercontinental Title match between the Honky Tonk Man and Brutus Beefcake.



Ultimate Warrior vs. Dick Donovan

Where the fuck did they get the jobbers for this show? Warrior catches Donovan in midair and tosses him on the ropes. Warrior then chops Donovan over the top rope and heads out with a forearm smash. Warrior hits a slam before sending Donovan into the steps. Warrior hits another slam then the action heads inside as he drops Donovan with a press slam before hitting a splash for the win (2:22).

Thoughts: Warrior wrestled like a heel here, being ultra-aggressive outside of the ring but the fans love him as he is clearly being pushed hard at the moment.



Okerlund is back in the Even Center, now showing us the Randy Savage foam finger. We hear from Bobby Heenan and Hercules as they talk about Ultimate Warrior. Now, we hear from Heenan and Andre the Giant, who laugh about how Andre will hurt Duggan the next time they face off.



Final Thoughts: Besides the Patera/Bravo segment, this episode really just continued the TV feuds that had been going on at the time. Really not a whole lot new to see.