What the World Was Watching: WWF Superstars – April 21, 1990

Vince McMahon and Jesse Ventura are doing commentary and they are taped from Glen Falls, New York.

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What the World Was Watching: WWF Prime Time Wrestling – April 16, 1990

Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan host tonight’s broadcast.

Jake Roberts’ squash from Wrestling Challenge airs.

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What the World Was Watching: The Wrestling Summit (Special Column)

As noted in prior columns, this show was a joint effort by the WWF, New Japan Pro Wrestling, and All Japan Pro Wrestling.  The WWF was looking to expand its global presence while New Japan and All Japan felt threatened by Akira Maeda’s shoot-like Universal Wrestling Federation, which drew a 50,000 person crowd to the Tokyo Dome for a big show in November 1989.  To counter them, New Japan and All Japan worked together on a supershow at the Tokyo Dome on February 10.  Then, they built on that effort by partnering with the WWF for another big card in Tokyo on April 13 that was named The Wrestling Summit.  According tothehistoryofwwe.com, the show drew a crowd of 53,742.

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What the World Was Watching: WWF Prime Time Wrestling – April 9, 1990

Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan are tonight’s studio hosts.  Monsoon asks Heenan if the Heenan Family is seeing growing defections.  Heenan is aghast at what happened with Andre the Giant at WrestleMania, opining that the big man cannot take directions.  Monsoon makes a good point that Heenan failed to help get Andre out of the ropes at WrestleMania, thereby costing his team the WWF Tag Team Championship.

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What the World Was Watching: WWF Wrestling Challenge – April 8, 1990

With Tony Schiavone gone, Wrestling Challenge sees an announcing shakeup with Vince McMahon and Bobby Heenan now calling the action.  They are commentating matches at the end of the taping cycle in San Francisco.

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What the World Was Watching: WrestleMania VI

Vince McMahon and Jesse Ventura are in the booth and they are live from Toronto, Ontario, Canada in what will be Ventura’s last appearance calling a WWF pay-per-view.  According to thehistoryofwwe.com, the show drew a sellout crowd of 67,678, a new attendance record for the venue.  It drew a buyrate of 3.8 (an estimated 550,000 purchases).  This was a decline from the 5.9 buyrate of WrestleMania V, but this can be attributed to more homes getting pay-per-view access by 1990, thereby messing with the buyrate average.

Robert Goulet sings the Canadian National Anthem.  According to Bruce Prichard, Goulet was picked for this spot because he badly botched signing “The Star Spangled Banner” several years earlier and this was a chance for him to redeem himself in front of a live crowd.  The WWF put the lyrics on the Skydome’s video screen to ease Goulet’s nerves.  And if you watch his body language during the performance, he goes from a bad of nerves to a guy having the time of his life halfway through.  His wife, who watched backstage, cried her eyes out after he nailed the song.

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What the World Was Watching: WWF Prime Time Wrestling – March 19, 1990

Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan are in the studio for tonight’s broadcast.  Heenan tries to open the broadcast and makes it all about him.

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What the World Was Watching: WWF Prime Time Wrestling – March 5, 1990

Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan are in the studio for this evening’s broadcast.

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What the World Was Watching: WWF Prime Time Wrestling – February 19, 1990

Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan are hosting tonight’s broadcast.  Heenan announces that Mike Tyson will not referee the WWF title match between Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage on The Main Event.  Monsoon follows up by saying that Buster Douglas will take Tyson’s place.  Heenan is discouraged by this news because he hoped to referee the bout.

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What the World Was Watching: WWF Superstars – February 17, 1990

Vince McMahon and Jesse Ventura are doing commentary and they are doing the second episode from Miami, Florida.

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What the World Was Watching: WWF Wrestling Challenge – February 4, 1990

Tony Schiavone and Gorilla Monsoon are in the booth and they are concluding the tapings in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

The Rockers energetic squash from Prime Time Wrestling kicks off the broadcast.

For the Special Report segment a recap of the Brother Love Show at The Royal Rumble airs.

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What the World Was Watching: WWF Wrestling Challenge – January 28, 1990

Tony Schiavone and Gorilla Monsoon are in the booth and they are still in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

A replay of the Hacksaw Jim Duggan-Pez Whatley match that aired on Prime Time Wrestling is shown.

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What the World Was Watching: WWF Prime Time Wrestling – January 22, 1990

Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan do the studio duties for tonight’s show.

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Bret vs. Misawa, Savage vs. Tenryu & Hogan vs. Hansen (and other Dream Matches!)

 

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Hogan & Hansen: Main Event in the making!

WWF/AJPW/NJPW WRESTLING SUMMIT:
(Tokyo Dome, April 13th, 1990)

* This is a pretty wild and wacky card, full of the kind of “Dream Matches” you’ll never see again- I’m really shocked it’s not more famous. I mean, it’s a triple-show with All Japan, New Japan, AND the WWF all at once! In the Tokyo Dome! Apparently highlights were aired on Japanese TV, but complexities with the rights led to the full event never being shown in its entirety (which might be why it’s so obscure). The biggest matches are Hulk Hogan vs. Stan Hansen, Macho Man vs. Genichiro Tenryu, and the Ultimate Warrior vs. Ted DiBiase. The WON awards declared this the “Best Major Wrestling Show” of 1990!

“TL;DR” Version: So come see Bret Hart vs. Mitsuharu Misawa in the most disappointing Dream Match of all time! Hogan with his “Japan working boots” (where he’s more “Unstoppable Monster” than the Technically-Gifted Powerhouse I was led to believe he was) on against Stan Hansen in one of his greatest matches ever! Macho King & Queen Sherri doing their schtick against a stoic top-tier Japanese legend in a befuddled Tenryu! Grumpy ol’ Jumbo Tsuruta dealing with hard-working heels in Martel & Perfect!

The show had two dark matches- Dan Kroffat, Doug Furnas & Joe Malenko beat Samson Fuyuki, Tatsumi Kitahara & Toshiaki Kawada in (11:56), and Jushin Liger beat Akira Nogami in (8:37). An extremely shaky fancam of the latter exists- it’s mostly hold-trading. They trade corner moves and Liger hits a surfboard and a rock-the-cradle. They trade flash-pins and Nogami hits a very good plancha and German Suplex for two, but Liger dropkicks him coming off the top and hits a Tope Con Hilo to the floor! He misses a roundhouse kick but gets a powerslam and finishes with a Moonsault Press. Looks **1/2-ish but holy god am I not gonna go move-for-move with such a shaky vid.

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What the World Was Watching: WWF Royal Rumble 1990

Tony Schiavone and Jesse Ventura are in the booth and they are live from Orlando, Florida.  According to thehistoryofwwe.com, this show drew a sellout crowd of 16,000 fans.  It also drew a buyrate of 2.0 (an estimated 260,000 buys), an increase from the 1.5 number the Rumble did the previous year.  This would also be the last pay-per-view that Schiavone would call for the WWF.

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What the World Was Watching: WWF Wrestling Challenge – January 21, 1990

Tony Schiavone and Gorilla Monsoon call today’s action, which originates from Chattanooga, Tennessee.  The taping took place on January 3.  This is the last show before The Royal Rumble.

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What the World Was Watching: WWF Wrestling Challenge – January 14, 1990

Tony Schiavone and Gorilla Monsoon call today’s action, wrapping up the television tapings in Nashville, Tennessee.

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What the World Was Watching: WWF Superstars – January 13, 1990

Vince McMahon and Jesse Ventura are doing commentary and they are concluding the tapings in Huntsville, Alabama.

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What the World Was Watching: WWF Prime Time Wrestling – January 8, 1990

Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan host tonight’s broadcast.  Tonight’s two feature bouts come from Hamilton, Ontario, Canada and were taped on December 14.

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