The SmarK Rant for WWE Network HIdden Gems–”Black Saturday”

The SmarK Rant for Black Saturday (World Championship Wrestling – 07.14.84)

Man, here’s one I thought I’d never see on WWE television again. So remember how Vince walked out on WCW Monday Nitro in March of 2001 and everyone was like “Holy crap, there’s something that’s never happened before!” Well, not quite. For you see, 1984 saw Vince gobbling up all the territories and TV deals he could get his hands on, and one of the major ones was Georgia Championship Wrestling, which resided in the timeslot that eventually became WCW. And so, with no warning to viewers at home who were tuning in for their weekly dose of Gordon Solie and the stars of the NWA, this is what they got instead…

Taped in Atlanta, GA, sort of.

Your host is Vince McMahon, standing in front of the World Championship Wrestling logo in an unholy scene that still weirds me out.

Adrian Adonis & Dick Murdoch v. SD Jones & Nick DeCarlo.

What really bugs about this is that they couldn’t even use the Center Stage set, and they just imported squashes from their other TV tapings. Adonis & Murdoch are the tag champs, but this is non-title. Seriously, if you’re an existing viewer waiting for a Ric Flair or Dusty Rhodes match and this is the junk they put out to impress you, wouldn’t you write an enraged letter to TBS, too? Put friggin’ HULK HOGAN out there, maybe, geniuses. Jones holds off the champs with hiptosses and a headbutt for Adonis, and then another one for Murdoch. The champs regroup and SD brings in DeCarlo, which can’t be a good move. He holds an armbar on Adonis and then one on Murdoch, but the beating to turn the tide is inevitable and comes at the hands of Murdoch. Double elbow from the champs and they stomp away into an elbow from Adonis for two. Murdoch pounds away and DeCarlo manages to make the tag to Jones, and he’s headbutting everyone again. Adonis catches him from behind, however, and it’s back over to DeCarlo again. Murdoch quickly dispatches him with a back elbow and they finish him with something resembling the Doomsday Device at 6:11. Just an extended squash.

Mean Gene debuts for TBS and interviews Mr. Fuji and new acquisition George “The Animal” Steele.

Jesse Ventura v. Chris Curtis.

Mega-stall from Jesse to start, as per usual. He pounds Curtis down and continues threatening some football player in the crowd, then chokes Curtis out on the ropes. Curtis lamely fights back, but Jesse pounds him down again and threatens the football player again. Body vice finishes at 4:17.

Mean Gene interviews B. Brian Blair, who basically has nothing to say. He also interviews some generic Russian named Alexis Smirnoff, whose Russian accent is even worse than Barry Darsow’s.

The Iron Sheik v. Ron Hutchinson.

Sheik takes Hutchinson down with a fireman’s carry and adds a gutbuster, then hits him with the loaded boot and finishes with the camel clutch at 2:05.

Big John Studd v. Bobo Brazil.

Bobo slugs it out with Studd in the corner to start, which looks pretty bad even by Studd’s standards. Studd elbows him down and goes to the bearhug, and that goes on for a while. Bobo reverses and Studd bails to regroup, then comes back in and chokes away. An ugly shoulderblock gets two. We hit the chinlock and Bobo fights out and uses headbutts to make the comeback. Legdrop misses, however, and Studd drops the elbow for the pin at 5:47. Really, REALLY, bad. Bobo had no business being in there and was embarrassing to watch.

Are you kidding me? This was supposed to replace WCW and make people actually watch Vince’s crappy product of freaks and musclemen? Definitely a must-watch for historical curiosity, however, as stuff like this defined the business later on.  It’s certainly neither hidden nor a gem, as it was previously available on the WWE 24/7 service, and remains one of the all-time turds ever dropped by the WWF.