Maffew has been looking at some UWF shows shot at Universal Studios, which WCW became infamous for shooting at with the giveaway results months ahead of time that didn’t always end up matching big plans when real life happened. However, another group also filmed at Universal Studios, namely the not-late Eddie Mansfield’s IWF group, which ended up producing the likes of Kevin Kelly and the Smoking Gunns as well as housing some other stars after their time in the sun was done. So, here’s a June 1992 episode to look at.
Introduced from the “New York city streets” by “CL” (short for Continental Lover) and heel manager Nasty Ronny.
Cliff Anderson vs. Chris “The Doctor” Proctor
Anderson is the group’s TV champion, which I wonder if it was an intention to get people thinking it was Arn Anderson given the vague resemblance. Kevin Kelly and CL on commentary, joined in progress. Anderson is a bearded guy with short hair and a red singlet, while Proctor has long hair, tattoos and a blue tiger stripes bodysuit, looking more like a rocker than a doctor. Proctor is trying Oklahoma rolls, small packages and amateur position pins to wrap up Anderson with the time running out, so Anderson dumps him to catch his breath. Not sure which room or stage they filmed in, but it’s pretty dark and not well lit. Anderson almost gets a piledriver on the outside but gets backdropped. They both get in as the bell rings, with it being a draw. Anderson grabs his belt and runs. Alright, but a better judge on quality, good or bad, would be seeing the whole match.
Advert for the Power and Paradise Tour 92 (two shows), with the Long Riders (later Smoking Gunns) taking on later almost-stars Thunder and Lightning, with one half becoming Cobra and nWo Sting, in one match, as well as the number for the IWF Training Center.
The Dynamite Express vs. Tom Sawyer and Hollywood Rick Diamond
The Express, as a rock and roll tag team, are much more Rock ‘n’ Roll RPMs than Rock ‘n’ Roll Express, although one has definitely watched his Ricky Morton tapes with the Frankensteiner and double team reverse headlock and headscissors takedown. Tom Sawyer has no more luck than Huck Finn would, so Diamond tags in and gets a clothesline to give the heels the advantage. Nice suplex with a floatover, which makes me wonder whether the Windhams, who were involved with this group, were running the training school. Rockin’ Randy tags in and he’s a mullet on fire, leading to the babyfaces winning with a Rockerplex (of course!). One half looked good, the other half not so much.
The Mongolian Stomper vs. John Boyd
And speaking of the Windhams, the guy who forged the way, Blackjack Mulligan, is on commentary. The Mongolian Stomper is notorious bad actor Nils Allen Stewart, who was Abobo in the terrible Double Dragon movie and Jesse Ventura in the even worse unauthorised biopic about him. Luckily it’s a quick squash, but he is probably even worse than early days Jim Hellwig before he went off to be the Dingo Warrior, clunky and stiff, just doing a bunch of moves in a preset order with no rhythm or timing or presence and doing an impersonation of a wrestler. So bad it has to be seen. He wins with a flying stomp off the second to at least end it quickly. Nasty Ronny’s other charge, the Possessor, puts the boots in after the match.
Blackjack Mulligan vs. Joe Bruce
Out of shape and out of prison, Blackjack’s in jeans, boots and a tanktop. Nice armdrag, but he no-sells a bunch of weak shots from Bruce, who can barely run the ropes, and boots him down, then gets the spinning elbow he used to finish in the WWF run in the eighties and applies the claw before Mondo Kleen, of all people, runs in for the DQ. The locker room empties before they’ve even got started to separate them. A short-haired Billy and Bart are among the gang, a mullet away from the WWF.
Chubby MC vs. The Possessor
Chubby MC is a heavyset black guy with a rapper gimmick. Again, the lighting is so bad that between his skin, black gear, and Possessor’s black leather trousers and t-shirt and the dirty mat that you can barely see anything. Possessor attacks from behind to start and while as sleazy and indie as f--- does at least have some great facial expressions and body language. Chubby MC goes to the outside and the Mongolian Stomper attacks his second, the Wild Thing, and throws him in to earn a DQ. Nothing to shout about.
Weird promo outside what looks like a courthouse with the IWF’s version of Beetlejuice, who looks like he’s just an interview segment guy and isn’t Art Barr, with Mondo Kleen coming into shot and doing a campy interview like an amateur dramatics guy, which I guess he was. Would’ve been better if he just started swearing about not being a jobber.
The Bad Boys vs. Dennis Allen and Sonny T.
You’d think the Bad Boys were a ripoff Nasty Boys, but they don’t even put in that effort to shave their heads or get some similar fear. Dennis Allen hip tosses Brett Blair and gets punished for it, with Billy Brooks tagging in to get their finisher, the Bronx Bomb (Veg-O-Matic) early. He pulls Allen up on two as Kevin Kelly mispronounces the word rankings as “wankings”. Brooks misses a charge, bringing in Sonny T. Sonny is actually hairy WCW jobber Sonny Trout, later of the Southern Posse with Rick Thames. Just a Florida guy. Brooks piledrives him, almost giving Kelly an orgasm as he completes it. Bad Boy Bash, which is a poor Demolition Decapitation, finishes. Pretty energetic squash, to be honest.
The Incredible Thor vs. The Punisher
OK, weird one to look at here, because Thor is a big, blonde bodybuilder, and he looks a bit like WCW jobber Mike Thor but is too young and handsome. He comes out with a fur cape and a hammer and has a bit of an Ultimate Warrior vibe. For Googling him, he was a Steve Keirn trainee called Tod Samulok (possibly) and died in 2007. Punisher is a masked guy with a knockoff Masked Superstar look. I think it might be Bob Cook, actually. Hip toss, bad dropkick and armdrag after showing off some power reversals. Punisher rakes the eyes, but gets whipped into the corner and Thor gets a flying elbow and (Polish) Hammer to win. Not great, but don’t know (other than the obvious steroid influence) why he didn’t pop up anywhere else of note.
CL and Nasty Ronny sign off in their less than subtle way. They’ve been annoying all hour in the interstitial bits.
Melting it down: Like being screamed and shouted at incoherently for an hour, with everyone trying too hard. The wrestling was passable, but the presentation was obnoxious between Kevin Kelly’s enthusiastic-but-cringeworthy commentary and CL and Nasty Ronny being one note arseholes. A big pass from me.