New podcast! Today it is a look at WWF Championship Wrestling from January 14, 1984. Bob Backlund teams up with Hulk Hogan to face Mr. Fuji and Tiger Chung Lee. Dr. D David Schultz is in Victory Corner.
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Been a while since I’ve done a post on a book and in reviewing my Kindle notes, I completely missed one. I read Bill Apter’s book “Is Wrestling Fixed? I Didn’t Know It Was Broken!” on vacation in the Outer Banks at the same time I read the Pat Patterson book, which consumed many more posts than this will.
Apter was a staple of my childhood as the main guy at a group of wrestling magazines (The “Apter mags”) led by Pro Wrestling Illustrated. As I lived in the northeastern US, I would see WWF but those magazines introduced me to NWA, AWA, World Class and all the territories or at least the ones that remained in the late 1980s. So in a way, Bill Apter is partly responsible for this blog. Let’s peek at the book, though I didn’t highlight very much. Continue reading Highlights of Bill Apter’s “Is Wrestling Fixed? I Didn’t Know It Was Broken!”
Ask any wrestling fan what the greatest year in the history of the business is and you’ll hear a few answers. The years 1997-98 saw the explosion of wrestling into mainstream culture, 1984 saw the WWF expansion along with several strong territories. I’ll guarantee that under Family Feud rules (ask 100 people) that the number one answer would be 1989. The NWA (WCW) had classic Ric Flair feuds with Ricky Steamboat and Terry Funk, along with the emergence of Sting and the Great Muta. Territories like Memphis and World Class were running interesting angles. Japan saw the legendary Jumbo Tsuruta-Genichiro Tenryu matches. And of course, the WWF machine hummed along starting with a Saturday Night’s Main Event on the first Saturday of the year.
But first, a personal story about this show. I never saw this until the WWE Network came along even though I was watching religiously 28 years ago. As a lad of 9, I wasn’t staying up until 11:30 PM ET to see the show live so we would run the VHS on a timer. However, my father messed up and it never taped and I was furious that I missed the hair vs hair blowoff between Brutus Beefcake and Outlaw Ron Bass. Such are the priorities of youth. (Four years later, my father accidentally taped over Larry Bird Night with something, probably a game show. But he made good and purchased the commercial VHS, which I still have.) Continue reading Saturday Night’s Main Event #19 – 01/07/1989
It has now been over a full year since I started this sojourn through all the WWF Saturday Night Main Event shows and I hope at this point next year I will have wrapped with the weird FOX editions from 1992. But for now, we are at Thanksgiving weekend 1988, two days after the Survivor Series. Of course this was taped ten days before that PPV and it wasn’t referenced at all on the show. No newly turned Demolition is what that means since that would be tough to explain to the live crowd in Sacramento at the Arco Arena, home of the Sacramento Kings. On the night this aired, the Kings lost to the New Jersey Nets at Arco to drop to 1-9 on the year.
Despite being in a less glamourous part of California, Jesse Ventura reminds you that he is a Hollywood star and that makes him more important than Vince McMahon. He also says he’s got a better physique than Vince, who no doubt took that shit personally. I appreciate their dynamic so much more now than I did 15-20 years ago. Continue reading Saturday Night’s Main Event #18 – 11/26/1988
It was probably the wrong time to attempt this with business starting to tank, but WWF tried a non-holiday midweek PPV with This Tuesday in Texas, aired on December 3, 1991 (25 years ago as this is posted!) only 6 days after Survivor Series. While it did 400,000 buys which doesn’t seem bad on its face, the result was disappointing since the show only cost $14.99 so the dollar take wasn’t that good.
However, the reduced price meant it was an easy sell to my parents. The shame is that my original VHS of the show is long lost. This was a somewhat mysterious show over the years because the show was not released on a standalone tape, instead crammed onto Coliseum Video’s WWF Supertape ’92. Then again, all the matches from the PPV (except Hogan-Undertaker) aired on Prime Time Wrestling in late 91/early 92 so whatever. Continue reading WWF This Tuesday in Texas – 12/03/1991
Change was in the air at the 1991 Survivor Series, and not just because the show was moved off Thanksgiving to the night before. Not only was the Ultimate Warrior experiment over, but Warrior himself was banished. And here comes Ric Flair coming in with the NWA title calling himself the “real world champion”. I think it’s best summed up by looking at the 10/21/1991 Superstars taping from Fort Wayne, Indiana because big things were happening: Continue reading Reflections on 1991 Survivor Series – The Gravest Challenge
I have a confession about the 1990 Survivor Series. I bought the show, or at least got my parents to buy it for me. I skipped WrestleMania 6 and SummerSlam, so why did I come back? Like many, I wanted to see what was in the giant egg figuring that something built up that much was going to be awesome. So yeah, that’s my story. How about the rest of the 1990 Survivor Series from Hartford, CT? Continue reading Reflections on 1990 Survivor Series
If you like wrestling shows that start with Jake Roberts making out with his then-wife Cheryl, then this is the show for you. If you like seeing a close up of Rick Rude’s crotch, well, that’s the second thing seen on the October 1988 episode of Saturday Night’s Main Event. A lot of moving pieces on this show from Baltimore, Maryland. Vince McMahon and Jesse Ventura are the hosts and Jesse immediately compares Vince to hapless then-VP candidate Dan Quayle. For those who don’t know, Quayle is the guy who misspelled “potato” during an elementary school visit by adding an “E” to the end. Continue reading Saturday Night’s Main Event #17 – 10/29/1988
I was able to see every WWF PPV live in the calendar year 1989. That’s the 1st PPV Royal Rumble, WrestleMania 5, SummerSlam, and yes, the No Holds Barred: The Match/The Movie show. Oh and this Survivor Series from Chicago, where the only thing people seem to remember is Tully Blanchard being pulled and replaced by Bobby Heenan. Something more must have happened, because I took 2 1/2 pages of notes on this! Continue reading Reflections on 1989 Survivor Series
When I was given the opportunity to choose a show for review on The Lapsed Fan Wrestling Podcast, I had a lot to choose from even with all WrestleManias and Starrcades spoken for. I chose the 1988 Survivor Series, a show that I did see live and one that has so many interesting behind the scenes details. It is a show with Hillbilly Jim and Red Rooster in the main event. It is the only time we would see Tully Blanchard wrestle Bret Hart. It was a changing of the guard; Junkyard Dog, Don Muraco, Ken Patera, and the British Bulldogs are all guys who were either gone before this show or immediately afterward. And we see the arrival of The Rockers, The Brain Busters, Mr. Perfect, and Owen Hart as the Blue Blazer. Plus so many random appearances. Let’s dive in. Continue reading Reflections on 1988 Survivor Series