Written by: Tom Hopkins
It looks like new clips have been added to the opening. We’re in Dayton, Florida at the Ocean Beach Center and Vince McMahon is joined by the consultant to the NEW WWE champion – Mr. Perfect.
-The New Hart Foundation vs. 2 Jobber Brothers-
I missed the name of the brothers (sounded like Everly which doesn’t make sense because it sounds too much like Beverly). but it isn’t important. Owen starts with one of the brothers and hiptosses him down. Owen flips out of the corner to duck a charge and suplexes his opposition. Perfect says that the New Foundation are not perfect and Vince responds that the Beverly’s are gunning for them. Yet another match I was robbed from seeing on a PPV. We hear from the Beverly Brothers and the Genius as the Anvil tosses around the other jobber. Owen hits a missile dropkick and follows with a standing dropkick. Anvil bodyslams one of the jobbers before a Rocket Launcher ends this at 2:45. This was actually a high-energy opening match.
We have a Royal Rumble report from the one and only Mean Gene. This is brought to us by the WWE 1992 Merchandise Catalog. We have a new champion, the tag team champions retained (the Legion of Doom) and we have a new IC title holder, too! (Roddy Piper) We hear from the new World Champion – Ric Flair. You know, the WWE Title belt hanging over Ric’s shoulder is not as impressive as the NWA Big Gold Belt. I’m just sayin’. Flair defied all odds to win the title.
-Rick Martel vs. Mickey Jay-
It’s Ricky vs. Mickey! Rick Martel dropkicks Mickey early on and bodyslams him later on. The Boston Crab ends this at 2:41. This was slightly better than his blindfold match but not my much.
Sean Mooney talks about the Texas Tornado being fit enough to compete in the WBF. We hear from Kerry who talks about the beautiful women he meets on the road. He finishes his business in the ring, though. We also hear from the Natural Disasters and their manager – Jimmy Hart. They are still touting the fact that they’ll be the next WWE Tag Champions despite losing to the LOD. They will take on all comers – including the New Foundation and Duggan & Slaughter.
-Bret Hart vs. Jack Owens-
This may be Bret’s first match back since losing his title. Perfect mentions that Bret may challenge for the WWE Title soon. In less than a year – he would be the WWE Champion after beating the current champion. Bret bodyslams Owens early and delivers a legdrop. Bret cuts a pre-recorded promo saying that he’s 100% now and he congratulates Piper for his victory. Bret’s back-breaker sets up the second rope elbow and eventually the Sharpshooter ends this at 2:27
Sean Mooney is back and he’s here to tell us that the most exciting event of 1992 is not too far away. He’s talking about Wrestlemania if you didn’t know. We hear from Jake Roberts. He cuts another excellent promo where he talks about half the people respecting him and the other fearing him. He calls 1992 the Year of the Snake, not of the Macho Man, but Macho was the one holding the WWE Title that year, not Jake. We also hear from Tito Santana.
-Ted DiBiase (w/Sensational Sherri) vs. DD Russell-
DD looks like the most unathletic, pale, white dude I’ve ever seen. Even Perfect and McMahon rag on him. DiBiase destroys DD and even gets a kiss from Sherri. Sherri’s happy holding onto the Million Dollar Belt. Russell is powerslammed down and the Million Dollar Dream ends this at 1:49.
Well, so long Rumble Report – It’s Wrestlemania Report time!! We hear from some of the five top contenders for the WWE Title. First up is Hulk Hogan (he complains of being robbed though he was fairly eliminated), the Undertaker (who did he wrestle that year? – I can’t even remember), Roddy Piper (who actually lost the belt he has on his shoulder at that event), Randy Savage (who went on to face Flair halfway through the show as Hogan closed it) and Sid Justice (who went on to face Hogan). Jack Tunney holds the decision of who would face Flair. Fans can actually call and vote for who they want to win. So that was the start of reality TV shows like American Idol! Of course, if this were on TV today they’d have some sort of match on Raw to decide the #1 contender. Hijinx would ensue so they’d fight in the February PPV to decide for sure.
-Repo Man vs. Jobber-
I couldn’t catch the jobber’s name but again, I’m not too stressed about it. Kevin Catlack is what Vince says during the match but whatever. We hear from Virgil who wants to give Repo Man a WHOOPING he deserves. Perfect questions the word Whooping instead of Whipping. Repo Man doesn’t do much but ends with a single-leg lock submission at 1:59.
It’s Chris Chavis! He’s with a Shaman on a Vision Quest. He knows after his quest that he will soar like an Eagle.
-Sid Justice vs. Mike Casey-
Sid gets a nice pop here, despite being built as the monster heel to Hogan. Sid destroys poor Casey here. He hits a nice chokeslam and charges with a big boot that dumps Casey to the outside. He military presses Casey back INTO the ring. He lifts him up like he as going to powerbomb but actually spins him around and just tosses him. The powerbomb finally ends this at 2:09. That was certainly impressive. That’s why fans loved this guy. He was huge and just destroyed these jobbers with power moves. Many smarks and work-rate people can’t stand him but you have to say he was a big guy with a personality that the marks could get behind.
We send it to Mr. Mooney and he brings us a promo from the Mountie and Jimmy Hart. Mountie complains about being robbed at Royal Rumble. He didn’t like that he got a match with no preparation against Piper. Well, Mountie has a point. Mooney calls Mountie’s reign the shortest of any champion which isn’t true considering Andre forfeited the title as soon as he won it in 1988. We also hear from the Big Moss Man. Next week we’ll see IRS, Chris Chavis’ debut (and subsequently his new Indian name), the Funeral Parlor with Sherri, the LOD and the Undertaker. We’ll also hear what the Wrestlemania Main Event will be from Jack Tunney.
-The Bottom Line-
This is two good episodes this month. The matches weren’t that great but most of them were at least energetic and we saw impressive squashes. The segments between included a nice Rumble Report and the first Mania report. I have to say that these promo spots really drive the show and keep angles moving while keeping stars out of the ring against each other. I think the current product can learn something from this to keep the PPV’s interesting. You could have big talent against some talent enhancement, promo’s to build angles, and maybe one bigger match. Just make the PPV’s special by building to it slowly. The era of monthly PPV’s has really ended the ability to build properly to an event. Anyway, rant over – it’s a decent episode.