Wrestling Observer Flashback– 10.06.86

Previously… https://blogofdoom.com/index.php/2016/06/07/wrestling-observer-flashback-09-22-86/

I’m always amused at how something as innocuous as Dave calling Gorilla Monsoon a horrible announcer can really get under people’s skin.  My views are clouded by nostalgia as much as the next person, but I don’t think he was very good either.  But then I was also never a fan of the Heenan/Monsoon combo either.  YES, I WENT THERE AGAIN.

– So in a weird twist, with George Scott now working for Fritz Von Erich in Dallas, apparently Ricky Steamboat has been booked for the upcoming Cotton Bowl show as a favor to him, which seems to indicate some kind of working relationship between the WWF and World Class.  Obviously this arrangement didn’t last long, but Steamboat did in fact work the show as planned.  Dave is all about the conspiracy theory on this one, noting that they couldn’t draw for shit in Montreal, so they made a working agreement with Dino Bravo’s home promotion, got a foothold in the city, and then gutted them and suddenly became the hottest thing in the territory with no competition.  Dave thinks Vince might be trying a similar tactic with Fritz, and Fritz is doing so badly right now that he was little choice but to go along with it.

– Chris Adams will be sentenced for his airplane incident later this month, with the max sentence being $500 and six months in prison.  However, the jury rejected the DA’s request for a felony charge (which would have sent Adams back to France or Russia or whatever NON-AMERICAN hellhole he was shat from) and it’ll just be for misdemeanor assault instead.  The punishment there is typically having your ex-wife stolen by your student and then having to watch him become the biggest star in the business while you self-destruct.  It’s a very SPECIFIC sentencing, to be sure.

– Lou Albano got fired this week, as he now thinks he’s a movie star after a role in “Wise Guys” with Joe Piscopo.  I’d make a joke here, but I think Joe’s career was punishment enough. Dave is sure that Lou will be back in two weeks, but in fact it was, what, 10 years?

– Also, Adrian Adonis was apparently fired as well for doing something stupid that no one is willing to talk about, but obviously he was in too much of a high profile feud with Piper to just get rid of him at that point.

– Dave also reports that there might be an opposition promotion to Stampede Wrestling forming soon.  I don’t think anything of the sort ever happened.

– The big show coming up this week is “Inoki’s latest attempt to kill the business”, which I would presume features Will Osprey v. Ricochet.  HIGH FIVE!  Anyone?  Seriously though, it’s the trainwreck show with Inoki v. Leon Spinks and Maeda facing kickpuncher (or is it punchkicker?)Don Neilsen.

– Dave says don’t take this the wrong way, because he’s not saying anything by it, but house shows remain disappointing all across the board, except for the initial meetings of Hogan and Orndorff, which are standing-room only sellouts that draw giant Scrooge McDuck-like piles of money that Vince can literally swim in.  But all the rest, DISAPPOINTING.

– MSG drew 16,000 (12,000 paid – what a DISASTER) to see the Hulk Machine and his Machine friends take on Studd and Bundy and Heenan.  Well, duh, no one knew who the mysterious Hulk Machine was!

– Billy Jack Hayes is doing jobs, as Dave notes that the entire reason for his continued employment is that they don’t want him working for Crockett.

– King Tonga and Tonga Kid have been somewhat repackaged into the Islanders, Haku & Tama, to “put Kid in his place”.  Whatever that means.

– Dave runs down the Piper angle from the Baltimore TV tapings, where Piper gets the shit beaten out of him by Adonis/Muraco/Orton, and he heard the execution was “pretty bad”.  Yeah, PRETTY BAD-ASS!  I find his sentence structure hilarious here, too, because he says “For those that didn’t watch…” and then recaps the angle, then finishes by saying “he was told” that it was terrible.  So he’s recapping an angle second-hand that he didn’t even see and making out like he watched it?  Anyway, he rages further that Adonis is now the #1 heel in the promotion (despite the “pretty bad execution” of this terrible angle) and yet was fired and thus we’ll never get the payoff.

–   Dick Slater, Jimmy Jack Funk and Steve Regal (Mr. Electricity, not Lord, for those who asked) are now full-fledged TV jobbers as they’ve given up on all of them completely already.

– And if the roster wasn’t bloated enough already (maybe they need a brand split?) they’re now completely skull-fucking the corpse of the poor Montreal promotion by bringing in Rick Martel, Tom Zenk, and maybe Steve DiSalvo.  Dave doesn’t think any of them could make it here.

– They bombed in Detroit with Animal Machine on top.  That’s the George variety, not the Road Warrior variety, by the way.

– The big plan to push Butch Reed is to give him blond hair and call him “Mr. Natural”, with Slick as manager.

– Also new to the territory:  Superstar Graham making his comeback, and Wayne Ferris as “The Honky Tonk Man.”

– In the Salisbury, MD, tapings, they booked a non-title win by Sheik & Volkoff over the British Bulldogs when Slick tripped up Dynamite for the win.  We later found out from Kid that Vince actually wanted to put the belts on Slick’s team, but thankfully that didn’t happen.

– The second-run matches with Hogan v. Orndorff have seen the gates cut roughly in half, typically from 20,000 down to 10,000 per show.

– Dave is really confused by the Harley Race push, as he beats everyone clean as a heel, but they (or Hulk) don’t trust him with Hulk, so that’s not happening, which leaves his whole deal kind of pointless.  It did take a long time to finally get to the Hulk series, although it did decent business when they went with it.  Anyway, Dave’s take on it:  “An image built upon a myth can get destroyed quickly when the myth is exploded.”


scooby doo can doo doo


– You tell ‘em, Homer.

– Over to Crockett, where Magnum spanked Precious on TV, and Dave again pulls a Comic Book Guy by declaring that he already saw it in Dallas.

simpsons did it

That particular run of smarm is getting pretty annoying.  Not as annoying as my dank memes, but it’s up there.

– Jim Crockett will in fact try running Pittsburgh on 10/24 and load up the card with all his top guys.

– The Road Warriors and the Andersons have been pulled from the US tag title tournament on 9/28 and Dave is kind of horrified to think of who might win now.

– Still no talk for Starrcade yet, which is weird because it’s only two months away.

– Both the WWF and Crockett are running Philly on 10/18, but there’s a law on the books that says no two wrestling promotions can run shows within 25 miles of each other, and the respective arenas are less than 25 miles away.  1984 Dave would chime in with “but luckily WWF isn’t wrestling” or something equally snarky, but mellower 1986 Dave just leaves it hanging there.  WHAT HAPPENED MAN?  YOU USED TO BE COOL!  Anyway, I’m sure one of them greased a crooked politician to make the problem go away.  That’s probably how the Penguins made the finals this year, too.

– Bam Bam Bigelow has come to World Class, but they don’t want people mixing him up with Terry “Bamm Bamm” Gordy, so he’ll be called “The Crusher”.  Oh, it would get WORSE.

– They stripped Chris Adams of the “World” title and gave it to Black Bart on TV because REASONS, and in typical Mark Lowrance fashion he claimed to have never heard of Bart before.

– Fun with time zones:  Kevin Von Erich is currently scheduled to win the “World” title from Black Bart on 10/12 at the Cotton Bowl show and then hop a plane and work Japan 10/13.  However, the problem is that 10/13 in Japan IS 10/12 in Texas due to the international date line changeover.  Hopefully Kevin figures it out before then.

– Young boy Toshiaki Kawada is actually working in Montreal right now to gain experience, billed as simply “Toshiaki”.

– Down in Memphis, Dave continues his weekly “This Jeff Jarrett kid is really small but might have a future in the business” run with another one.

– Fire & Flame lost a mask match to Jerry Lawler and unmasked as Dirty Rhodes and Don Bass, but Dave still doesn’t know who The Torch is.  His name was actually Larry Wright, and he wrestled as Larry Price and was older than dirt, and he’s pretty much a nobody.  I don’t know why Dave didn’t just Google it!

– Poor Scott Irwin is working Florida as The Smasher, wearing a mask to cover his baldness and just looking like hell after chemo, down more than 40 pounds.

– Also in Florida, they’re training a pair of ex-football players named Dewey Forte and Ron Simmons.  Dewey is terrible on interviews, but Ron is supposed to be pretty good.  DAMN.

– Apparently Leon Spinks now wants out of the Inoki “fight” really badly because he’s suddenly remembered that he has a much more important boxing match to train for and just can’t spare the 10 minutes to lay down for Inoki.

– Dave notes that although people have been clamoring for Hulk to go back to “Eye of the Tiger”, they can no longer use it because Survivor threatened legal action about it.  However, ELO actually gave their blessing for the Rock N Roll Express to use “Rock N Roll Is King”.

– Dave covers some real names that he got wrong in the Who’s Who special and reels off an impressive run of names we know to be correct now, but finishes by declaring that Percy Pringle’s real name is indeed Percy Pringle.  So close, Dave, so close.

– Late notes:  The Bulldogs will be dropping the tag titles soon to either Sheik & Volkoff or the Hart Foundation.  Favorites are Sheik & Volkoff, but with the Harts doing so many jobs you have to think they’ll get it.

– Adonis definitely was fired, Dave notes here.

– Dave finds another thing to love about Jack Victory, among the many that he’s listed in numerous issues preceding this one, this time calling attention to the quality of his worked punches, which are fast and crisp as anyone in the business.  He’s just so dreamy. I bet Dave went around California carving “DM + JV (KR)” into trees.

– Dave again runs down the shit business that the WWF has been doing without Hulk on top, and notes that although a “bad” night for the WWF is ten times better than a good night for most promotions, they still have expenses that are ten times that of anyone else due to all the overhead and talent expenses involved, so 10,000 people is kind of a flop.  You know who would juice the houses for them on top?  Jack Victory.

– There’s a kid in Japan named Keichi Yamada who will be leaving for Europe and then Calgary to get some seasoning before Inoki likely brings him back as a top junior heavyweight.  Apparently he’s very reminiscent of Dynamite Kid.  You don’t say?


Wait, no!

Dave News Flash

– Adrian Adonis has been upgraded from “fired” to “not fired” within the span of this newsletter, and will be back before Thanksgiving.

– Chris Adams is off to the UWF while he waits for his sentence.

OK, now we’re done.