The SmarK Rant for World Championship Wrestling – 02.14.87
Taped from Atlanta, GA
Your hosts are Tony Schiavone & David Crockett
So after the detour of “Supertowns on the Superstation” last time, we’re back to your regularly scheduled Techwood studio shows again.
In your cold open, the Superpowers team up with Dick Murdoch to take out the Russians, but then Dick Murdoch TURNS ON AMERICA and joins up with Ivan Koloff to form the EVIL SUPERPOWERS.
Ron Garvin & Barry Windham join us at the desk to start, and they’ve got the Jim Crockett Memorial Cup on their minds. They would actually be omitted from the tournament when their situation changed a couple of months later. Ron Garvin thinks that either one could challenge Ric Flair for the World title, and in fact both would in 1987.
Jimmy Valiant v. Tommy Angel
Of course, Valiant uses his iconic generic entrance music, “The Young Man From The Former Dutch Colony Once Known As New Amsterdam” by Railway Station. Jimmy lets us know that he loves Tony before he starts, but then who doesn’t? Meanwhile, the announcers are still shocked and appalled at the actions of Dick Murdoch. You know who we need right now? BILL WATTS. He’d put everything in perspective. Tony speculates that Murdoch was jealous because he wanted to reform the Outlaws with Dusty Rhodes and it ended up with Dusty and Nikita as a team instead, which makes perfect sense and is completely logical. Weird to think that wrestling could function that way. Valiant finishes with the back elbow and elbowdrop at 1:39, which is a pretty laconic squash by his standards.
The Midnight Express join us, and Cornette actually outs Ronnie Garvin as Miss Atlanta Lively and accuses him of living a secret life as a “transvestite” who has leather and torture gear in his basement because he’s too much of a coward to confront people in real life. So they’re gonna take the US tag team titles and make Garvin so ugly that he’ll HAVE to wear makeup to go out in public again. Also, Garvin is a PERVERT and he doesn’t like perverts. I’m just gonna leave that one right here. But wait, Ronnie Garvin was Miss Atlanta Lively? I had no idea. It was such a convincing disguise.
Bullet Bob Armstrong would really like to enter the Crockett Cup with his son Brad.
Barry Windham & Ron Garvin v. Jack Jackson & Randy Barber
The jobber’s name sounds like a guy in a spy comedy desperately trying to come up with a fake name to fool the bad guys. “Um, yeah, my names Jack…Jackson.” Garvin ties him up and gives him some chops, and it’s over to Windham for forearms and a dropkick. Windham is so tall that he nearly takes up the entire width of the ring doing the move! Back elbow and Jackson gets some offense, so Garvin hits him with a big boot and gives him the back rakes to torture him some more. Ronnie just pulls him around the ring by the neck and adds a suplex and double stomp, and then hooks him in a facelock and sweeps the leg to take him down into a guillotine. Finally the poor bastard tags out to Randy Barber, and Windham hits him with a standing dropkick and delayed suplex. Back to Garvin, who declines to hit Hands of Stone and David gets this sad tone in his voice and goes “Aw, Garvin’s gonna be nice to him this time.” And then Ronnie drops a knee on his throat instead and David adds “Oh, no he’s not!” Back to Windham for a backdrop and this time Garvin DOES come in and finish the guy with Hands of Stone at 6:47. I forget if they ever did have any matches with the Midnights on TV, but damn that would be a good one.
Back to the Dick Murdoch situation, as we take you back to NWA Pro Wrestling, with Nikita Koloff beating the Big Red Machine with the Sickle, at which point Dick Murdoch turns on him and beats him down. A great detail I loved is that Petrov tries to come in and help and Murdoch pretty much tells him “Get the fuck out of here” because he’s early, and then he has to go grab him again and put him in position so they can do their big triple-team on Nikita to finish him off. Afterwards, Murdoch goes over to the announce position and cuts his explanation promo: Nikita Koloff was a dirty commie who hated America and did all this stuff to destroy it, and then Dusty went and took him on as a partner and spit on John Wayne’s grave. So then Dusty comes out to confront Murdoch and he’s all fired up, but Dick just BLASTS him with the chain and the Russians beat the piss out of Dusty in the ring until Barry Windham makes the save.
Have I mentioned lately that WRESTLING USED TO BE FUCKING AWESOME? Because it was. Still is sometimes. But holy shit this was great. And it all made sense! You can totally understand where Dick Murdoch was coming from. He was a jerk about it, but his motivation completely makes sense. His feelings were hurt! And we know Dusty is a giant egocentric douchebag, so of course he wouldn’t think about Murdoch.
Tully Blanchard joins us and he laughs because Dusty Rhodes “is making enemies besides the Four Horsemen”. But now they’ve got Lex Luger to help them out, who is a real athlete that doesn’t just paint his face like the Road Warriors.
Lex Luger v. Kent Glover
Lex takes him down and works the arm before going to a headlock. He gives Glover a clean break and Kent decides to throw some forearms, so Luger quits being Mr. Nice Guy and beats him down with forearms and a back elbow. You know he means business now because he goes “YEEAARGH!” before each move. Luger dumps him and beats on him outside, and then back in for a kneelift and a clothesline. At this point there’s some heel fans who are REALLY into this, yelling “PUNISH HIM!” and “That’s a LUGER-LINE!” And that’s why he pushed so hard. Lex with the powerslam and HUMAN TORTURE RACK at 4:00 and the crowd damn near gives him a standing ovation for that squash.
Back at the desk, Tully continues putting over Lex’s wrestling ability. JJ points out that a “little old grandmother” wrote in to him and compared the Horsemen to the Titanic, because she’s watching every week waiting for the impending disaster. Well she can keep waiting! Tully notes that they have “hot and cold running women” in their hotel rooms, and throws it to the next match…
Arn Anderson v. Zane Smith
What would be the advantage to having cold women on tap? Arn works the arm for a bit and tosses Smith to the floor. Back in for an armbar and he cranks on that before wrapping it around the ropes and beating on it. Back in, Arn stomps him down while the heel fan yells “GOURDBUSTER!” like someone shouting “Freebird” at a concert. Arn continues cranking on the arm and the smart-ass fans are like “Just give it up!” and then Arn indeed finishes the guy with the Gourdbuster as requested at 4:20. This a fun crowd tonight.
The Kansas Jayhawks are here, and they’ll no doubt be at the Crockett Cup along with all the other teams. As usual, their first topic is Dusty Rhodes and all the shit happening to him. Because of course it is. Regardless, they did not end up getting an invite to the tournament so they must have been gone by April.
Gorgeous Jimmy Garvin v. David Isley
Yes, once again it’s the musical stylings of Zed Zed Dreidel, with their rendition of “Stylishly Attired Male”. And both Garvin and Precious are in Valentine’s Day gear! Jimmy takes him down with a headlock and assures us that the guy’s not going anywhere today. But then he contradicts himself by throwing him out of the ring, where Precious “is nagging him pretty good” according to David. “I know some of you men out there can understand that!” Geez and I was just about to bust out a “Women Am I Right?” before David beat me to it. Garvin tries to shoot the half on the mat and then decides to slam the guy a couple of times instead and we take a break. Back with Garvin holding a leglock before switching to a hammerlock on the mat. Back to the floor for the jobber for more nagging from Precious, and then Garvin finishes him off with the brainbuster at 8:06.
Ric Flair joins us, singing a quick line of “I’ve got the whole world in my hands” and frankly I’m shocked they didn’t edit in some generic version of that tune. Flair assures us that new recruit Lex Luger isn’t just all show with the ladies, he’s “a whole lot of go”, which he witnessed personally. What the fuck weird stuff is going on in those Horsemen parties? No blue jeans for the Horsemen, it’s alligator shoes, $1000 suits, and Rolex watches. Also, they’re gonna in Philadelphia at the Marriott Hotel, and JJ is gonna have a checklist at the door. Are you between 18 and 28 and a lady who is single? Well then you meet all the requirements. And then the next morning the ladies all strut out of the penthouse going “WHAT A NIGHT WE HAD WITH THE HORSEMEN!” and then Flair answers himself, going “WE KNOW! WE’RE THE HORSEMEN!” and Tony is just dying.
The Superpowers join us as everyone is still in shock from the actions of Dick Murdoch. Dusty is still teaching Nikita things, like you have to earn your friends and not just buy them. Also, he’s been teaching Nikita about FREEDOM, like in America. But Uncle Ivan is trying to buy friendship from Dick Murdoch and now they’re gonna pay the price. And then of course Dusty lays out some heavy words for Murdoch, taking things back to 1974 when Murdoch turned on him the first time, and it’s a hell of a deal, as you’d expect. Fired up Dusty with a target is a hell of a promo.
The Midnight Express v. Ricky Sullivan & Larry Steven
You know, say what you will about the debate between the Condrey and Lane versions of the Express, but at least Lane had the common damn decency to WEAR MATCHING TIGHTS. Condrey hits a snap suplex on Sullivan and walks on him, and then over to Steven as Bobby hits him with a suplex as well. Condrey comes in and rubs Larry’s face in the mat and tosses him with a pretty vicious bump, but Bubba throws him back in while Cornette claims DEEP STATE CONSPIRACY on commentary with regards to the Midnights in the Crockett Cup last year. Bobby hits Sullivan with the flying kneedrop, literally having to duck under the studio lights to deliver the move, and then Condrey tosses the guy out again. Bubba sends him right back in and Bobby hits a butterfly suplex for two. Condrey with a backbreaker while Cornette makes Bewitched jokes and calls the guy “Darren Stevens”. Over to the desk where Bobby nails the guy in front of Tony and then they throw him back in again for more punishment. Condrey with the brainbuster to finish at 5:35.
Jimmy Valiant joins us and we get a tremendous gag where Valiant doesn’t know the camera is rolling and tries to borrow $100 from Tony, at which Tony informs him that they’re on the air and Jimmy suddenly snaps into character and goes into his usual wacky promo.
Ivan Koloff, Dick Murdoch & Vladimir Petrov v. Alan Martin, Randy Mulkey & Chance McQuade
Who the hell is wasting a quality name like “Chance McQuade” on a TBS jobber? He should be starring in a cop show with George Kennedy, Wednesday nights on ABC! Murdoch grabs Martin and drops him on the announce desk, then tosses him in the ring like a javelin as the heels just destroy the jobbers with no bell evident and Murdoch pins Martin with the brainbuster. OK, seriously, three matches in a row ending with a brainbuster means Dusty should have been paying better attention.
The Midnight Express returns and Cornette wishes his boys a Happy Valentine’s Day, and Cornette shows off his shoes that were willed to his family by Liberace when he died. But we gotta talk about Dusty, in this case Big Bubba Rogers, who still wants a piece of Dusty in Pittsburgh on February 27 in a cage match.
Big Bubba Rogers v. George South
So now they demonstrate what Dusty is in for in Pittsburgh. South tries a shoulderblock and gets shrugged off, and then tries a dropkick and gets no reaction from that either. Crossbody is also blocked and Bubba throws him out. Back in for a backbreaker and he pounds away with clubbing forearms before finishing with the Bubba Slam at 2:32.
Rick Rude & Manny Fernandez join us, and the question is not if they’ll be invited to the Crockett Cup, it’s whether they’ll accept the invitation and decide to show up.
The Kansas Jayhawks v. Keith Vincent & Vern Deaton
Seriously, who looked at Dutch Mantel and Bobby Jaggers and thought “Aha, there’s a babyface tag team!”? Dutch hits a short clothesline on Vincent and Jaggers drops elbows on him, and they put Vincent down with a double elbow and it’s over to Deaton. He gets some jobber offense on Dutch but gets beaten down as a result. Back to Jaggers, who hits a neckbreaker as they hype up his impending challenge of Central States champion Bill Dundee that’s coming soon. I can’t possibly imagine why Crockett couldn’t keep THAT territory in business with exciting main events like that. Dutch comes in with an armbar on Deaton while the heel fans and babyface fans do a dueling cheering/booing section for Deaton. Finally the Jayhawks finish him off with a Hart Attack at 5:47. This was a really boring squash and I never liked the Jayhawks at the time either.
Jimmy Garvin is here and he’s got mixed emotions right now because he thought about RETIRING today. Because there’s no one left for him to wrestle, see. And if he wasn’t such a manly man, he’d probably cry on national TV because it’s so depressing. But then he makes out with Precious and he feels a lot better and un-retires on the spot. Also, Tony’s mom needs to quit calling him, it’s not gonna happen.
Bob Armstrong v. The Demon
It’s not specified what sort of demon he is, but he wears powder blue so it’s likely not a very evil one. Also he’s not likely to be related to the Kiss Demon, but he’s a wearing a mask so you never know for sure. Bob takes him down and works the arm and then goes to a facelock, but the Demon makes the ropes. Demon chokes him out, but Bob puts him down with a back elbow and a suplex for two. Middle rope elbow finishes at 3:46.
And then Tony and David wrap things up at the desk, reminding us about the whole problem with Dick Murdoch and how crappy life has become for Dusty and Nikita all of a sudden.
Damn that Dick Murdoch turn was a hell of a deal.