Found this on Pinterest. It’s glorious.
Time for more Dream Matches- this time centered by an SNME match between Demolition & The Rockers! Also, a REMATCH to the classic Jim Powers/Bobby Walker vs. Renegade/Joe Gomez match I showed you last week… PLUS the legendary explosion of that very same Renegade/Gomez team! And then not one, but TWO High Voltage solo matches, as Rage & Kaos face Fit Finlay & Perry Saturn, respectively! And then we cap things off with a Papa Shango vs. Typhoon match, long after either man was relevant! I couldn’t have booked a better match myself!
DEMOLITION (Smash & Crush, w/ Ax) vs. THE ROCKERS (Shawn Michaels & Marty Jannetty):
(Saturday Night’s Main Event, July 27 1990)
* This is the prelude to SummerSlam, with the Demos now as heels. The Rockers are in bright yellow, and gaining credibility at this point.
Smash IMMEDIATELY works in Jumping Demolition Axehandles, but Marty uses speed to get ahead and dropkicks him out. Crush is in, but the Rockers hit stereo headscissors & dropkicks to put them out, then Shawn hits the weirdest move ever- a double-team into a rana, but like… with his legs around Smash’s waist. Was Smash supposed to be lower or something? But Crush runs in with a clothesline to stop that momentum in a hurry. Crush slugs away, but the Rockers hit a double-hiptoss & elbow/nip-up combo. Ugly flying sunset flip for two- Marty almost landed on Crush there. Marty gets yanked out by Smash and Ax clotheslines him on the floor. Back from a break in mid-beatdown, Crush press-slamming Marty over the top rope, from the floor to the ring.
Marty eats double-teams, and Crush hits his standing spinning backbreaker (hey, that move was in WrestleFest!) to put him in REAL trouble- he ducks an elbow but eats a one-handed snap-chokeslam. Bearhug and further beatings meet him, but he finally manages a comeback and tags out to Shawn, who comes in BLAZING with all kinds of big moves to send Demolition flailing around- double dropkick puts Crush way out! Another for Smash, and they hit a Double Superkick! Double Flying Fistdrop! They have the titles won, but a SUPER slow count lets Crush drag Shawn off! Crush & Marty brawl in the corner to distract the ref, at which point AX comes in, clothesline Shawn, and makes the illegal pin himself (9:18)- oooooohhhh, that’s good cheating. The Demos get their belts, but the Hart Foundation AND the Legion of Doom come out to protest the call as I marvel at how amazing the WWF’s tag team scene used to be- look at all these legends in there!
Actually a really solid TV match- kept short to prevent excessive resting, and with a beatdown segment that went just long enough, and kept moving (the bearhug spot just let to a standard comeback that was squashed)- the Rockers also got in a LOT of double-teams, though some of the spots were a bit ugly.
Rating: **3/4 (pretty good TV match!)
Here’s an assignment for the class: search out Jim Powers videos on YouTube and read all of the comments!
JOE GOMEZ & THE RENEGADE vs. JIM POWERS & “HARD WORK” BOBBY WALKER (w/ Teddy Long):
(March 16 1997, WCW Pro)
* HELL YES, A REMATCH! Powers has more rainbow-ish coloring on his tights and Walker’s in black. I note that Gomez is starting to get the Abdullah the Butcher “pregnant” look with his pants pulled up so high. Also, he has lost his vest.
Gomez gets an armdrag, but gets hiptossed twice. Powers, adjusting his wrist-tape (is that seriously his “Taunt”? Like if this were a video game, you’d build his SmackDown! meter with THAT?), hits a headlock & cross-body on Renegade for two. Renegade catches him and does his handspring back-attack in the corner. Double-clothesline, and both are down, but Renegade doesn’t see that Powers tagged, and gets caught in a flying cross-body by Walker for the three (2:34). Damn, check out the mega-push for Walker in these matches!
Rating: 1/4* (again, little more than some basic moves, though Renegade at least hit his handspring thingie)
Joe Gomez has more images on Google Image Search than most joshi wrestlers. That feels wrong somehow.
“THE DESPERADO” JOE GOMEZ vs. THE RENEGADE:
(July 7 1997, WCW Main Event)
* OH MY GOD- the legendary Gomez/Renegade tag team EXPLODES on WCW Saturday Night! Mike Tenay actually has the balls to claim that they were heralded as “one of the top tag teams of the future”. Renegade’s in plain black trunks with his leather jacket, while Gomez comes down as a doughy jobber physique with his black tights pulled up too high again.
Gomez is SO FIRED UP, he charges the ring and attacks before the bell! He takes down Renegade MMA-style, but stops to yell at the ref and gets booted. Renegade beats him down, but then they do the single ugliest hiptoss in history (who starts with one guy’s back against the ropes?). Renegade chokes away while Gomez just lies there without moving his arms (so THAT’S why Vince never hired him!). Renegade brings him up for another hiptoss, but Gomez now grabs him, they rustle a bit, and SLOWWWWLY hauls him over in a backslide… for the three (1:02)? Are you friggin’ kidding me? They play this up as a big rivalry between futures stars and they get a MINUTE? To a BACKSLIDE? WCW IS UNFAIR TO THE DESPERADO!!
Hilariously, Renegade then jumps him after the bell, choking away… then hits a Northern Lights Suplex (the universal offense of the enraged beatdown) and stomps away all mad. Like, you just lost in a minute to a mid-match nearfall move and want to make an impression of your fury, so you do THAT?
Rating: DUD (actually their most poorly-wrestled match so far, somehow fucking up twice in 60 seconds)
AND NOW, YOUR WEEKLY HIGH VOLTAGE MATCHES:
WCW TV TITLE:
FIT FINLEY vs. RAGE
(WCW Nitro, 1998)
* This is during that weird point where the Booker T/Chris Benoit feud had Irish wrestler Fit Finlay (then spelled “Finley”) inserted into it for some reason (probably to make more unpredictable TV and give Fit something to do… and because WCW sometimes just hit “random” on their booking plans). The week before, Benoit, with supreme hockey hair, had distracted Booker and actually led to Fit hitting the Tombstone to become the new TV Champion! He’s in his black & green shamrock singlet, while Rage is in an orange one.
Rage wins a scrap and hits a monster clothesline in the corner, but Fit trips him up and works the leg. He works hammer elbows over the apron and lariats Kaos for good measure. Fireman’s carry forward roll, but Kaos trips him up for revenge and Rage his a powerslam. He doesn’t go for a cover, which Heenan & Tony shit on him for, but he hits the Springboard Splash- two! He manhandles the referee to distract him and bring Kaos in, but Booker T comes down, crotches Kaos on the top rope, and Fit punches Rage when he turns around, and hits the Tombstone for the three (3:19). Benoit comes down for another brawl with Booker now, sending JJ Dillon out to cancel their matches tonight, and pit them against each other instead! The winner meets Fit Finley for the TV Title next Sunday at Slamboree!
Rating: *1/2 (Perfectly fine little match, with Finley carrying the rookie with legholds and feeding a few comebacks before getting an easy win)
PERRY SATURN vs. KENNY KAOS
(WCW Nitro, 19.10.1998)
* This is from fairly late in Kaos’s run, as he now has a first name, and he’s up against Saturn, at this point a very highly-thought-of worker and a real workhorse in WCW’s midcard, having Goldberg’s first really good match. He’s in black trunks with a green Saturn on the crotch, while Kaos is in white.
Saturn tries to lead Kaos through some arm stuff to start, but Kaos lariats out- Saturn recovers with a pair of neckbreakers as the crowd is REALLY quite hot for this one. Side kick and slingshot elbow bring him down, but Kaos dumps him. Guardrail shot, lariat & gutwrench powerbomb have Saturn on the ropes, but Kaos does some basics before hurting his wrist doing a press slam. Saturn uses his hesitance to slug away, but he gets dumped into the corner and has to make ANOTHER comeback, using head kicks and finally a huge superkick in the corner gets two. Kaos uses a jaw-jacker as he keeps trying stuff, but Saturn snaps into an overhead belly-to-belly to another ovation. Lariat! Falcon Arrow! And he signals his finisher- Death Valley Driver! Easy three-count at (4:20).
Saturn was so, so good at this time. He reminds me of a tougher-looking version of the modern “indie guy style”, as if he was a dude who saw wrestling tapes from Japan for moves to swipe, and just went “yes” to all of them. So he has this vast moveset of killer-looking things, and the physique and athleticism to pull them off, with the smarts to not just BeamSpam them out. His Death Valley Driver is possibly the best outside of Etsuko Mita’s (the inventor)- he just DROPS guys with it, and it looks so painful. A killer finisher. And Kaos wasn’t slouching in this, either, holding his part of the offense and leaving Saturn to make his comebacks. He was a bit TOO fight-y, halting momentum more than once, but his stuff didn’t look bad.
Rating: **1/4 (perfectly good short match, not a “squash” since Kaos dominated most of it, but still an emphatic win for Saturn)
THESE HAVE BEEN YOUR WEEKLY HIGH VOLTAGE MATCHES
Papa Shango, the evil voodoo master with literal magic powers. One of the stupidest, most unrealistic things I’ve ever seen in wrestling, and god I wish there was more of it these days.
PAPA SHANGO vs. TYPHOON:
(WWF, March 6 1993)
* An unexpected match-up from early 1993, WAY after Shango was relevant, and while Typhoon was still kicking around the company after Earthquake bailed.
Typhoon no-sells Shango’s running shoulderblocks, then easily powerslams him. Shango misses a charge and both miss elbowdrops in succession, but Shango eventually brawls away. A dropkick of all things gets two, and he hits a sleeper to put the big man down. The fans aren’t really into the fight, and Shango buggers the timing by attacking Typhoon RIGHT when he holds his arm up at “3”, which is the moment you’re supposed to milk it for a crowd reaction! A pair of clotheslines send Shango WAY over the top rope, and a frustrated shadow-man grabs his Sparkler Stick and shoots it in Typhoon’s face for the DQ at (4:59). Man- both these dudes are on the way out and you do THAT finish? Shango attacks him with the stick after the bell, but Typhoon actually makes his own comeback, hitting an avalanche, powerslam AND a big elbow before Shango can bail.
Completely nothing match, as Charles Wright was garbage at this point, and Fred Ottman ain’t the dude to carry a rookie to a good match- they just slapped some meat for a bit and then did a sleeper spot in a match under five minutes long, then went to a Fuck Finish.
Rating: DUD (not even a single cool move!)