Written by: Tom Hopkins
I recently finished the Hulk Hogan’s Unreleased Collector’s Edition and I did want to bang out another WWE DVD before tackling the History of the World Title. This is an older one and it will feature a TON of copying and pasting. I did pick it up because this version if the four-disc one and some of the matches intrigued me. Plus I got it on the cheap.
The Main Characters
This focuses on one man only, Hulk Hogan. Hulk is arguably the biggest wrestling star in the history of the sport and this is his second DVD release, following Hulk STILL Rules but coming a little while before Hulk Hogan’s Unreleased Collector’s Series.
This focuses only on Hogan’s WWE, AWA and WCW work, beginning in 1980 during his first WWE incarnation, heading to AWA and coming back to WWE for his mega-huge-run. His big WCW work is here, as well as his return to the WWE and even his XWF match.
I actually prefer the WWE collections this way, with the three discs acting as one long program that is full of matches.
—Disc One (2:35:27)—
There’s a montage of Hogan’s biggest moments to start as well as the talking heads of the WWE praising Hogan. Gene Okerlund and Jimmy Hart are here to guide us through this collection.
–Hulk Hogan vs. Andre The Giant–
This is a September 13th, 1980 match-up from the storied wrestling city of Hamburg, PA. Hogan has Freddie Blassie in his corner, as he always did during his early career. Vince McMahon and Bruno Sammartino are calling the action here. Andre wins the first lock-up, tossing Hogan into the corner. Hogan responds with the same but Andre rebounds with a big boot to the chest of Hogan. Andre grabs a side-headlock but Hogan breaks and knees Andre in the gut. Hogan bodyslams Andre with apparent ease, something that would get tougher in 7 years. Andre gets up quickly and bodyslams Hogan before delivering a big boot to Hogan’s grill. Andre misses a splash and Hogan rolls to the outside. Blassie slips a foreign object into Hogan’s elbow pad before Hogan returns to the ring and into a series of headbutts. Hogan ducks a big boot and elbows Andre down with that loaded elbow. Andre falls as Hogan goes to the outside and celebrates with Hogan. Wait, there was no pinfall. Andre is cut-open and maybe it was a first-blood match? Hogan left the ring at about 4:00 or so for a sports entertainment finish about 17 years before it was in vogue. It was tough to get a good pace going here because of how short it was. ½*.
Hogan talks about taking the Rocky III movie and getting released from the WWE as a result. Hogan ended up in the AWA.
–Hulk Hogan vs. Nick Bockwinkel(c) for the AWA Title–
This is from an undisclosed location taking place on April 24th, 1983 with Ron Trongard calling the action. Bockwinkel has Bobby Heenan in his corner. Bockwinkel bails to start, earning heel heat. Hogan wins a lock-up to the delight of the fans and that’s all the action we’ve had in the first three minutes. Hogan shoulderblocks Bockwinkel down again as we make it to the five-minute mark. Bockwinkel knees Hogan in the gut but Hogan repays that in spades with an unthinkable ten straight knees to the abdomen. Hogan gets a two count out of that and Bockwinkel was only saved by putting his leg on the rope. Bockwinkel slows things down a bit with a headlock. Bockwinkel sends Hogan to the corner but charges and finds nothing but Hogan’s boot. Hogan drops an elbow for two. He hits a shoulderbreaker and covers only to have Bockwinkel make the ropes again. Bockwinkel slugs his way out of trouble only to get powerslammed for two. Hogan misses the legdrop and Bockwinkel again attacks with punches. Okerlund announces 15 minutes gone even though we just hit the 13 minute mark. Bockwinkel tries bodyslamming Hogan but Hogan falls on top of him for two. Hogan drops an elbow and the cover but the ref pauses after counting to two to allow time for Bockwinkel to kick out. Hogan sends Bockwinkel to the corner and charges but Bockwinkel moves out of the way. Bockwinkel applies his sleeper and Hogan snapmares him over and right into the referee. Bockwinkel grabs the sleeper again as the ref revives in the corner so of course, Hogan backs his way into the corner to knock the ref out again. Bockwinkel goes back to the sleeper and this time Hogan dumps Bockwinkel out of the ring. Hogan suplexes Bockwinkel back into the ring and hits the big legdrop to end this match at 18:10. The fans erupt over that win. I think this was reversed later on for some crazy reason (Hogan sending Bockwinkel over the top?). Sure enough, Okerlund tells the crowd that Hogan was disqualified and the title goes back to Bockwinkel. The fans do not like that call at all and start chanting bullshit. Hogan gets on the microphone and says that this title is for everyone, despite the fact that he didn’t actually win it. This was really boring for the first 12 minutes but I have to say the last 6 weren’t bad. The ending was BS and one of the reasons that AWA eventually folded. **.
Hogan left the AWA for the WWE again and told his wife that if he has one good year in New York City he can retire. Well, you know how that turned out!
–Hulk Hogan vs. Iron Sheik(c) for the WWE Title–
Taken from: Greatest Wrestling Stars of the 80’s DVD
Sheik is your champion at this point, having won the title from Backlund a month prior. This was an MSG show, taking place on 01/23/84. I just reviewed this for the History of the WWE Title DVD, but it is a short match so let’s have another go. Hogan attacks Sheik from behind and is a house o’fire to start. He even chokes him with the Sheik’s own robe! Who cares about the rules! Hogan with a big clothesline and a kneedrop. Big boot gets one. Hogan with an elbow knocks Sheik down, then he drops an elbow for two. Blind charge for Hulkster misses and Sheik unloads on Hogan with the loaded boots. Sheik with a backbreaker gets two. Sheik puts on a Boston Crab, but Hogan powers out. Sheik gets a couple of boots then puts on the Camel Clutch. Hogan powers out, comes off the ropes with a leg drop and a cover gets the three count and the victory at 5:34 in a truly historic moment at Madison Square Garden that would usher in a new era of wrestling. We see the post-match interview with Gene and Hogan in the locker room. I was harsh on this the first time around, but this wasn’t a terrible match. It did what it had to do. *1/2.
Cena recalls seeing this match on MTV and that is what hooked him on wrestling.
–Hulk Hogan(c) vs. Big John Studd for the WWE Title–
This is a September 22nd, 1984 MSG match and Hogan has the white trunks on tonight. Okerlund and Monsoon are calling the action here and Heenan is in the corner of Studd so that takes care of any information you need before the match starts. Studd clubs away at the back of Hogan before winning a test of strength thanks to a knee to the gut. Hogan slams Studd into the corner before slugging away and charging at him with an elbow. Hogan boots Studd to his knees and tries a bodyslam but Studd grabs the ropes to prevent being slammed (and avoid having to pay out $10,000). Studd bodyslams Hogan and covers for two. Studd applies a bearhug as Okerlund calls him the People’s Champion. No Gene, there’s only one People’s Champion and he’s on disc three. Hogan breaks but runs into a shoulderblock and Studd puts the bearhug on again. Hogan is booted to the outside and Hogan’s been busted open now. Studd slugs away at Hogan on the apron but Hogan’s feeling it now. Hogan hits a running clothesline that sends Studd down. Hogan drops an elbow and calls for the bodyslam. Hogan tries the bodyslam but Studd tangles himself on the top rope. Hogan follows Studd to the outside and tries bodyslamming him again only to have Studd forearm his way out of it. Studd slips back into the ring and the ref rings the bell. I guess Hogan’s been counted out. Obviously the title can’t be lost on a count-out so Hogan is still champ. I thought this was a good big man match-up between the two although it didn’t really get past the punching and kicking too much. **.
Piper calls this next match one of his highlights because of how big the stakes were (McMahon put almost everything on the line here and it did set up Wrestlemania).
–Hulk Hogan(c) vs. Roddy Piper for the WWE Title–
Taken from: Greatest Wrestling Stars of the 80’s DVD
This is from the 02/18/85 MSG show. This has a cool title; the “War to Settle The Score.” Orton has his cast on now at ringside, hurting it in the previous match. Bob Costas does the ring introductions. Damn he looked young here. Albano, Mr. T and Cyndi Lauper are at ringside as well. They charge at each other right away and exchange punches. Hogan gets the better of it and sends Piper to the corner, then charges Piper in the corner. Piper drops and Hogan slams the Rowdy one, following with an elbow. Hogan bites the Irishman, but an Irish whip is reversed, followed with a clothesline for two. Piper stomps the Hulkster on the back of the head, then covers for two. Piper with a sleeper hold, but Hulkster gets out. Piper works over Hogan in the corner, and Orton cheats by choking Hogan. Hogan hits the injured arm and Orton goes to the back as Hogan clobbers Piper. Orton comes back with Orndorff as Hogan atomic drops Piper. He goes for another one but Piper punches Hogan, who falls into the ref. Piper holds down Hogan as Ordnorff drops a knee from the top rope. Now both Orndorff and Piper are pounding Hogan and Cyndi gets on the apron to help Hogan. Orndorff and Piper head for Lauper but Mr. T hops over the railing to protect Cyndi and T comes into the ring. T turns around and Piper hits him from behind, and the duo stomps him. Hogan hulks up and is back up, and now T and Hulk are up and the duo of Orndorff and Piper flee, until Orton comes back. The NYPD get involved to separate the two parties and you now have your Wrestlemania I main event. Hogan is declared winner via DQ at about 7:00 or so. This wasn’t a match, but an angle to set up WMI. It was fun for what it was. *.
Okerlund and Jimmy talk about the celebrity presence backstage after that match and soon Wrestlemania burst onto the scene. Wrestlemania was needed for the company to succeed and that was definitely a gamble that paid off for McMahon.
–Hulk Hogan & Mr. T vs. Roddy Piper & Paul Orndorff–
Taken from: Wrestlemania Anthology Vol. 1 DVD
This is your Wrestlemania I (3/31/85) Main Event. Pat Patterson is the real in-ring referee. Piper and Hogan start, and it takes a while for them to get going, though the fans are super-hyped. Mr. T wants to be tagged in and Hulk obliges. Piper and T exchange slaps, with Piper going behind T and riding him. T escapes to a huge pop. T with a fireman’s carry, then slams Piper down. Piper charges T into the heel corner, drawing Hogan to the heel side. Orton steps in, as does Snuka and Ali. Ali restores order (even knocking Piper to the outside), thankfully. Piper bails and they are on their way to being counted out before Hogan breaks the count. Piper and Orndorff return to the ring where all four men battle. Hogan takes on Piper and throws in an atomic drop. There’s a really wide view of the ring now, something you don’t really see. T comes in and Piper is clotheslined down by both. T with a bodyslam, then a hiptoss on Orndorff. T with another slam on Piper, and he may have exhausted is offense by now. Hogan comes in slugging away and tosses Piper to the outside. This draws Orndorff who clotheslines Hogan from behind, dumping him. Piper chucks a chair at Hogan and returns to the ring. Hogan comes back and is double-teamed in the corner drawing in T. T is forced to his corner by the ref, and Hogan takes a double atomic drop, drawing in Ali. Orndorff suplexes Hogan, then comes off the top with an axehandle to the back. Orndorff with a backbreaker on Hogan, then heads to the top rope. He misses a flying knee drop and Hogan makes the hot tag to Mr. T. T’s cleaning house doesn’t last long, as Piper comes in and the heels double-team. Piper comes in with a reverse headlock on T, but T escapes and makes the hot tag to Hogan. Orndorff comes in and we get the 80’s staple, the double noggin-knocker. Orndorff comes back with a suplex. Orton comes in, drawing Snuka, who headbutts him out. Patterson is busy getting Snuka out of the ring, allowing Orton to set up on the top rope. He comes off but instead of hitting Hogan, he hits Orndorff, who was holding the Hulkster up. T is holding off Piper and Patterson comes over and makes the three count, giving Hogan the first ever main event victory at Wrestlemania at 13:29. Piper and Orton bail as Orndorff is helped up by Hogan, T and Snuka. This was a fun match, had time to develop, and T wasn’t as bad as you’d think. **1/4.
Hogan talks about working with Bundy and he says Bundy was a tough worker, very strong and possibly had his timing off a bit.
–Hulk Hogan(c) vs. King Kong Bundy for the WWE Title in a Steel Cage Match–
Taken from: Wrestlemania Anthology Vol. 1 DVD
This is your Wrestlemania II (4/07/86) Main Event. Tommy Lasorda introduces the competitors, as well as other celebs (Ricky Schroeder is the guest timekeeper and Robert Conrad as the guest referee). Bundy has Heenan in his corner. Hogan has his ribs taped, which will become an obvious target I am sure. They battle back and forth and Bundy makes an early attempt at walking out, only to be stopped by Hogan. Hogan takes control again and sends Bundy to the cages, opening a hole in his forehead. Hogan pounds at the open wound, then tries to bodyslam Bundy, but fails and Bundy falls on top of Hogan. Bundy makes his way to the door but Hogan again stops him, choking Bundy (sportsmanship!) with the tape that was around his ribs. Bundy whips Hogan to the corner, then splashes him, then another splash with Hogan lying on the mat. Bundy makes his way to the exit again, but Hogan makes the stop, again. Bundy pounds away but Hulk has the power and is in no-sell mode. Hogan powerslams Bundy, drops the leg, then saunters to the edge of the cage. He is about to go over when Heenan interferes. Bundy tries to stop Hogan but is knocked off to the mat, allowing Hogan to climb up and over the cage and retain the title at 10:20. Heenan gets his comeuppance at the end of the match, too. I for one was entertained by this, and I thought it was good for what it was. **.
Orndorff says that Hogan was the best guy he ever worked with. Orndorff says that Hogan made him but he made Hogan, too. Hogan talks about the big match in Canada, too.
–Hulk Hogan(c) vs. Paul Orndorff for the WWE Title–
Taken from: Hulk Still Rules DVD
This is from The Big Event 08/28/86 held in Toronto Canada. This is from Hogan’s and Orndorff’s very famous feud where they started out as friends until Orndorff couldn’t take Hogan’s showboating and me, me, me attitude anymore and after a match where Hogan stole all the glory (once again) he turned on him and piledrove him to the mat. Orndorff pearl harbors Hogan to start and the two go after each other pretty fiercely until a big right by Hogan sends Orndorff to the outside. Orndorff comes back in and charges but hits Hogan’s elbow. He bails outside and pulls Hogan outside. He tries to smash Hogan’s head into the apron but Hogan blocks and sends Orndorff face first into it. They head back into the ring where Hogan clotheslines then drops and elbow. He sends Orndorff to the turnbuckles and follows with a clothesline. He celebrates and when Hogan walks over to Orndorff he gets nailed in the stomach. Heenan distracts Hogan so Orndorff sneaks up from behind only to get atomic dropped. Hogan goes outside and chases Heenan into the ring where Orndorff is waiting and starts working over the Hulkster. Orndorff clotheslines Hogan to the outside. Orndorff follows him to the outside and suplexes Hogan. Hogan tries to head back to the ring but Orndorff charges and knees Hogan in the head. Orndorff is owning Hogan now and elbows Hogan who is hanging off the ring apron. Back in the ring and Orndorff punches Hogan down. He gets chastised by the ref for using a closed fist but he ignores him and covers Hogan for two. He slams Hogan and drops an elbow which gets a two count. Orndorff goes to the outside and basically jumps off the top and punches Hogan. Orndorff goes for a piledriver but Hogan reverses and flips Orndorff over. Orndorff is the first one up and works over Hogan some more. Orndorff is bewildered that Hogan hasn’t lost yet so he goes over and bites Hogan! Orndorff follows with a belly to back suplex and does an arrogant cover but Hogan’s foot is outside the ropes. Orndorff thinks he’s won and celebrates as Hogan revives. Hogan knees Orndorff in the back who collides with the referee and then picks up Orndorff, raises his hand and clotheslines him. Hogan sets up Orndorff for a piledriver but Heenan runs in and hits Hogan with his bar stool. Orndorff covers Hogan as the referee slowly revives. The referee taps Orndorff on the shoulder three times so Orndorff hops up thinking he’s won and Heenan brings in the title to give to him. They celebrate until the announcer tells that Hogan won via DQ at about 11:00 or so. Orndorff is incensed and attacks Hogan until Hogan hulks up and basically lays into Orndorff. It was actually a really energetic match despite the screwy finish. **.
Hogan talks about being beat up by Andre all the time but he won him over in Japan. Hogan wanted to prove himself to Andre at Wrestlemania III that he could be the guy. Vince McMahon said they didn’t have a strong heel to battle Hogan and Andre was the one Vince thought of. Andre was done by this point, his back was so out of sorts, but Andre did it and it provided one of the biggest moments in wrestling history.
–Hulk Hogan(c) vs. Andre The Giant for the WWE Title –
Taken from: Wrestlemania Anthology Vol. 1 DVD
This is your Wrestlemania III (3/29/87) Main Event. Heenan accompanies Andre to the ring, and the heel heat he gets is amazing. You can’t help but get excited about this match, even 20 years later. They have an epic stare down to start and Hogan tries for the quick bodyslam but Andre falls on top of Hogan for a near-pinfall and Hogan’s back is injured. Andre works over the back of Hogan, slamming him a pair of times and even stepping on it. Hogan is worked over in the corner but after a while, Hogan escapes and regains the upper hand. He sends Andre’s head into the top turnbuckle 10 times, then charges but right into the big boot of Andre. Andre gets a bear-hug and after what seems like 10 minutes, Hogan breaks free and tries to put the Giant down. A few shoulderblocks don’t work and an Andre chop sends Hogan to the mat again. Andre hits a big boot (to the chest of Hogan) which send Hogan to the outside. Andre follows and tries to headbutt Hogan but misses and hits the post. Hogan rips up the blue mat to expose the concrete and tries to pile drive Hogan, but Andre back body drops him (very shoofly) onto the concrete. They go back inside and Hogan dodges a big boot from the ropes, then collides with Andre, sending the Giant down. Hogan is feeling it now and hulks up. Andre gets to his feet and is body slammed to a huge crowd reaction. Hogan drops the big boot and that’s enough for the victory at 12:00. There was not a lot of wrestling going on, a lot of loafing around, but the crowd reaction helped this match out and it is a historically significant match and probably one of the most viewed matches ever. Wrestling was marginal, but the event transcended the in-ring actions. *.
Rob Van Dam ends this DVD by noting he was in the crowd for that match. I didn’t know that.
—Disc Two (2:55:12)—
–Macho Man Randy Savage(c) vs. Hulk Hogan for the WWE Title –
Taken from: Wrestlemania Anthology Vol. 1 DVD
This is your Wrestlemania V (4/18/89) Main Event. For some reason, Macho Man is introduced first. Ventura notes the challenger was not introduced first and it pisses him off a bit. He also calls Elizabeth a gold-digger. Savage bails to start and major stalling before the first lock-up. Savage gets a side headlock but is knocked down and he bails again. He returns and this time can use the side headlock to his advantage. Savage bails again and Hogan chases him around the ring, so Savage pulls Elizabeth in front of him. They return to the ring and Hogan wrestles? He gets a drop toe-hold and works in a side headlock. Savage backdrops him but misses an elbow off the ropes. Savage comes back and hits a double axe-handle from the top rope for a two-count. Savage works an arm-bar in for good measure, but Hogan finally fights back and tosses Savage to the outside. They head back in and Hogan works on Savage with some elbow drops but gets a kick in the face when he telegraphs a back body drop. Savage gets two then slaps on a rear headlock, showing that Hogan has been cut open. Hogan tries to fight back but Savage still has the advantage, kneeing Hogan in the back and rolling him up for two. Savage works him over in the corner some more but Hogan revives and slams Savage’s head into the turnbuckle six times before following with some punches. He whips Savage to the corner and follows with a clothesline. Hogan bodyslams Savage over the tope to the outside prompting Elizabeth to help, and Savage swipes her away. Hogan follows outside and is about to slam Savage to the post when Elizabeth steps in front of him. Savage hops off then pushes Hogan into the same post. Savage sends Elizabeth away to the back, then hits a double axe-handle from the top rope to the outside, ramming Hogan’s throat into the barricade. Savage starts working on the throat of Hogan, bodyslams him, hits a kneedrop for two, then chokes the Hulkster, knocking him out. Savage heads to the top and hits his famous flying elbow drop from the top rope. He covers, but only gets a two. A revived Hogan kicks out and there’s no stopping him now! Punch, punch, punch, big boot and a leg drop ends it at 17:53 and we have a new WWE champion, Hulk Hogan. The conclusion was never in doubt, and Savage and Hogan worked a very good match together, telling a compelling story (Savage’s savagery) and Hogan taking a beating for most of the match before finally winning. ***1/4. The commentary on here was easily *****, though, with some awesome interplay between Gorilla and Jesse.
That was Hogan’s second WWE title victory. Hart mentions Hogan dropping the title the next year to try and usher in a new generation of WWE. We hear from Edge and Christian (back in their early days) talking about the match and being Hogan fans. Edge was even at the event and we actually see a clip of Edge at the show.
–Hulk Hogan(c) vs. Ultimate Warrior for the WWE Title –
Taken from: Wrestlemania Anthology Vol. 2 DVD
This is your Wrestlemania VI (04/01/90) Main Event. Their feud was set up very simply. They had an epic showdown in the middle of the Royal Rumble when the ring was cleared and they were the only two left. They criss-crossed and the crowds were eating it up. That lasted two minutes before another entrant went in. Later on in January, they tagged together on SNME. After the match, Warrior accidentally clotheslined Hogan and it all led to this, when Hogan would pass the torch to the new face of the WWE. We all know how that turned out. The crowd is split between Hogan and Warrior. They jaw to start then engage in a shoving match before locking up, with Warrior tossing aside Hogan. Hogan returns the favor on the next lock-up. Warrior wants a test of strength and Hogan obliges. Warrior gets the upper hand but Hogan makes the comeback. Hogan knocks him over and drops the elbow for one. Shoulderblocks don’t go anywhere so they criss cross and Hogan gets the slam, but Warrior is right up. They criss cross again and Warrior gets a slam, which Hogan sells. Warrior clotheslines Hogan to the outside and Hogan’s knee is hurt. Warrior brings Hogan back inside and works the knee over a bit, but Hogan takes control. He sends Warrior to the corner, follows with ten punches, slams Warrior, drops two elbows and covers for two. Hogan tries a small package but it only gets a two. Hulkster works over Warrior in the corner, then clotheslines Warrior for two. Backbreaker also gets two. Hogan works in the reverse chinlock and Warrior is out. Hogan knees him in the back, and hits a side suplex for two. Warrior is completely blown up now, and Hogan has to dead lift the Warrior.
Hogan puts Warrior in another reverse chinlock, but Warrior elbows out of it. Warrior off the ropes and both guys hit each other with a clothesline and they are both out. Both men get up, and revive, and Hogan’s blows have no affect on Warrior. Warrior clotheslines Hogan a few times, sends him to the turnbuckles, and suplexes him for two. Warrior bearhugs Hogan (what about the knee?) but Hogan resists and breaks free. Warrior goes off the ropes, misses Hogan, and knocks out the referee. Warrior goes to the top for a pair of double axe-handles, but misses a flying press of the ropes. Hogan covers, but there is no ref. Hogan tries to revive the ref and Warrior casually suplexes him and gets his own over. Hebner eventually revives but Hogan kicks out at a slow two count. Hogan rolls up Warrior but Hebner is still slow and weak and we only get a two. Hogan clotheslines Warrior to the outside but Warrior takes control outside and slams Hogan into the steel post. Back inside, Warrior clotheslines the Hulkster down, then actually bodypresses Hulk, the splashes him. He covers, but Hogan is up at two and he is full of energy. Hogan is up and ready. He tosses Warrior to the ropes, big boot, but the leg drop misses! Warrior follows with a splash and Warrior is your new WWE champion at 22:51. This was quite an incredible match, with Hogan actually carrying most of the action. At the time, it would be the best WWE Wrestlemania Main Event coming in at ****. Hogan presents the belt to Warrior and they embrace. Hogan leaves the ring as Warrior celebrates.
Slaughter talks about his Hogan feud and Slaughter was asked to burn the American Flag. Slaughter refused but he burned the shirt of Hogan instead.
–Sgt. Slaughter(c) vs. Hulk Hogan for the WWE Title –
Taken from: Wrestlemania Anthology Vol. II DVD
There’s a good two-minutes of stalling before they lock up, with Slaughter backing Hogan into the corner. Hogan powers out and the fans chant USA in support. The two then battle over a shoulderblock and Slaughter is finally taken down by one and rolls to the outside. These guys are moving in slow-motion right now. Hogan follows Slaughter and Slaughter finds, and uses, a chair to no effect. Slaughter begs off then eye-rakes Hogan when Hogan charges. Hogan comes back with a clothesline then dispatches Adnan who shows up on the apron. Hogan gets a two off an atomic-drop. Slaughter bails (again) and so Hogan follows with a back-rake. I would imagine that’s not too effective when Slaughter’s wearing a shirt. Hogan forearms Slaughter down for two. Slaughter charges Hogan but hits the turnbuckles instead and Hogan slingshots Slaughter back into the turnbuckles. Hogan just decimates Slaughter with elbow drops and even heads upstairs. Adnan grabs the leg of Hogan to prevent him from going up any further and this enables Slaughter to catch Hogan and throw him off. Slaughter clotheslines Hogan to the outside and follows. He finds a chair and uses it, in plain sight of the referee, and chokes Hogan with a cable. The ref refuses to count out either men or disqualify Hogan. Slaughter brings Hogan back in and covers for a veritable two and nine-tenths count. Slaughter hooks on a Boston Crab but Hogan makes the ropes. Slaughter works the back of Hogan, even dropping a boot to the back of Hogan. Slaughter covers but for some reason Adnan distracts the ref. Slaughter heads outside to grab a chair and smashes it into Hogan’s face for two. Hogan’s busted open now and Slaughter puts on the patented Camel Clutch. Hogan manages to break the hold and charges the turnbuckle to get Slaughter off of him, but Slaughter hops off and Hogan runs into the corner. Slaughter covers Hogan with the Iraqi flag and covers but Hogan kicks out and hulks up. Furthermore, when he sees the Iraqi flag he rips it up. Slaughter’s punches now have no effect. Big boot and legdrop gives Hogan and the United States the WWE title at 20:22. This was an okay match once it picked up and I have seen it like 30 times for some reason. It still holds up for me as a period piece to what was going on at the time. It certainly wasn’t the worst Hogan main event match. **.
Hart again mentions younger superstars making it on the scene for Hogan to battle.
–Undertaker(c) vs. Hulk Hogan for the WWE Title –
Taken from: Hulk STILL Rules DVD
This is from This Tuesday in Texas held on 12/03/91. This was the Tuesday following the 1991 Survivor Series where Undertaker won the title from the Hulk to due Ric Flair’s interference. The WWF wanted to experiment with having a PPV on a day other than Sunday so they took that opportunity by putting it days after Survivor Series. So Undertaker was the champion and even in 91, the bongs got a pretty decent pop, despite the fact that Taker played heel here. Hogan runs in only to get attacked by Bearer and Taker. Hogan gets Bearer out of there quickly and goes to work on Taker. WWF President Jack Tunney is at ringside to make sure nothing screwy happens. Undertaker no sells most of Hogan’s offense until Undertaker takes over the match outside the ring. They go back inside and Undertaker chokes Hulk Hogan. I don’t know what was worse, watching this match or watching From Justin to Kelly earlier. Undertaker does his rope walk and chokes Hogan some more. Speaking of American Idol, Justin really got shafted from season 1. I mean, 4 people have record contracts from season 2, and three of them actually have had singles that’ve been played on the radio pretty frequently. Justin, he was second place in the first season, made a shitty movie, had his record come out the same day as Clay Aiken’s and Ruben Studdard’s first single. I mean, he was set up for failure from the get go where he’s left to complain on Fox how he was shafted. Hogan starts to revive and Undertaker bounces off the ropes and falls. Great going Mark. If that was ECW, a huge you fucked up chant would’ve started. Undertaker hits his flying clothesline that he probably was supposed to hit before pulling a Shockmaster in the middle of the ring. Taker covers but Hogan kicks out. Taker tries for the rope walk again but Hogan tosses him off. Hogan begins to hulk up as Ric Flair makes his way ringside. Tunney tries to hold him back as Hogan weakly clotheslines Taker out. Hogan sneaks up from behind on Flair and wallops him with a chair, causing him to collide with Tunney who gets knocked out. Back inside, Hogan and Taker exchange blows until Flair comes up with a chair. Taker is about to slam Hogan’s head into the chair but Hogan blocks and it’s Taker who hits the chair instead. Flair gets clotheslined off the apron by Hogan then hits a big boot on Taker. Taker gets up though as the referee looks after Flair. Bearer makes it to the apron and tries to use the urn on Hogan but he blocks and it hits Taker instead. Hogan knocks down Bearer, steals the urn, opens it, and tosses the ashes into Taker’s face. He rolls him up for the three count and the victory at 13:11. Really boring, *1/2.
Ross brings us up to Hogan’s last title reign and eventual loss to Yokozuna. Hogan went to WCW and the dream match there was Flair vs. Hogan. Flair talks about Hogan’s contribution to the business and that Hogan is the most well-known wrestler. Flair says that Hogan has nothing in workrate over him but he has to concede the fact that Hogan is the bigger star.
–Ric Flair(c) vs. Hulk Hogan for the WCW Title –
Taken from: Hulk STILL Rules DVD
This is from Bash at the Beach 1994 (07/17). This was Hogan’s first match in the WCW and he’s looking noticeably trimmer than his usually roided up self. They staredown to start until Flair pushes Hogan. They lockup and Flair grabs a headlock which Hogan breaks with a whip to the ropes and a shoulderblock. They stall around a bit and Hogan mocks Flair. Flair starts to actual wrestler and the Hulk is lost. Flair starts working on Hogan’s arm. It’s like an old WWF episode, there’ Hogan of course but also Sherri and Jimmy Hart at ringside. Hogan does something resembling wrestling so Flair bails and hides behind Sherri. They head back into the ring and Hogan dominates. He goes for the big boot but Flair bails and hides behind Sherri again. Hogan shoves her out of the way but Flair wisely gets back to the ring before Hogan and attacks him as he comes in. Flair chops away as we take a quick cut it appears. Flair goes for a knee but Hulk hulks up. We get another crowd shot as Hogan rams Flair’s head into the turnbuckles. Hogan comes off the ropes so Sherri grabs his leg, allowing Flair to take advantage. Flair chops Hogan to the outside and Sherri tries to attack Hogan with a chair but Hart stops that from happening. They head back in and Flair goes to the top, and actually hits a punch from the top. Flair drops a knee to the bald head of Hogan. Flair starts chopping away at Hogan but Hogan starts chopping right back. Flair begs for a time out then they sort of grab at each other which ends up with a Flair pin attempt, complete with feet on the ropes. Flair grabs a reverse chinlock as we take another look at the crowd. Flair turns the chinlock to a sleeper as we look at the crowd again. Hogan is almost knocked out but somehow manages to revive himself, break the hold, shoulderblock Flair down a few times and start pummeling him. He send Flair to the corner and Flair flips over, ending up running on the apron so Hogan clothesline him out to the ring. Outside, Hogan hits a belly to back suplex. Flair gets to the apron before Hogan suplexes him back in. Hogan goes for the leg drop but Flair rolls our of the way. Hogan starts selling his hurt leg so Flair goes for the figure four, only to get small packaged for two. He tries again but Hogan kicks him off. He tries again but Hogan kicks him off again. Flair stops trying for the figure four and suplexes Hogan instead, but Hogan hulks up. He hits the big boot on Flair and covers, but Sherri pulls the ref out before he can get to three. Flair chopblocks Hogan as Sherri hits a flying splash from the top rope. Flair puts on the figure four which would end the match on most normal circumstances, but this is Hogan we’re talking about. Hogan makes the ropes so Flair has to break the hold. The ref has to push him off for Sherri chokes Hogan with her pantyhose. Hogan tries to get up but his leg is hurting. Flair chops him away in the corner but Hogan hulks up again. All of sudden, Flair’s shots have no effect on Hogan. Flair manages to elbow Hogan down as Sherri goes up for another splash but misses. Flair was at the top rope so Hogan tosses him off, then clothesline the both of them and puts the figure four on Flair. Sherri tries to interfere again but Mr. T brings Sherri to the back. Flair has some brass knuckles though and nails Hogan with them. He covers but Hogan kicks out and hulks up AGAIN! He no-sells more Flair shots and big boot and legdrop finish it at 21:17. Boring match that never got off the ground. **.
The 90’s were a different time and Hogan was changing with the times. We head to Bash at the Beach from July 7th, 1996 with the Outsiders vs. Macho Man and Sting. This all brings us to all four guys laying on the mat and out comes Hogan. Hogan immediately stuns the world by not attacking the Outsiders and instead leg-dropping Macho Man! This immediately turned Hogan heel as the third Outsider and the fans were not happy. The post-match interview saw Hogan say that this was a New World Order, a phrase that would follow the WCW until its death. Hogan mentions the Titan Shortcut to stirring the pot in the WCW. Hence, the Hulk-stir. WTF?
–Hulk Hogan vs. The Giant(c) for the WCW Title –
This is the only match I’m reviewing for this disc. This is from Hog Wild and it took place on August 10th, 1996. It looks like an outdoor arena. Hogan stalls on the outside before coming in and slugging away at the Giant to no effect. Hogan bails and returns with a side headlock. Heenan references Hogan wrestling Andre in front of 93,000 people. Hogan’s shoulderblock fails and Hogan bails again. This is five-minutes in and it’s a gigantic stall fest. We go to the test of strength which Hogan wins thanks to some boots to the gut. Giant powers out of it but Hogan takes him down with a pull of the hair and start on the arm. Hogan continues with the stalling and the fans, to their credit, stay involved in the match. The bikers are revving their engines, too. Giant headbutts Hogan to the outside and Hogan pulls the Giant out and backrakes him. How can the Giant withstand those back-rakes? Hogan has his head slammed into the steel. Giant connects with a backbreaker inside the ring and covers for two. Giant delivers a big foot and is prepping for the chokeslam but he has to deal with a charging Scott Hall. Hall is chokeslammed. Nash runs out and he’s chokeslammed, too. Hogan runs in and lays out Big Show with the belt to secure the pinfall and the title at 14:55. This was just one terrible stall job and I mean it when I say it had no redeeming quality. DUD.
They talk about one last dream match in Sting vs. Hulk Hogan. Bischoff talks about the one-year build between Sting and Hogan although he doesn’t mention how bad that match was.
–Hulk Hogan(c) vs. Sting for the WCW Title –
Taken from: Starrcade – The Essential Collection DVD
This is from the 1997 Starrcade, held on December 27th, at a time when WCW was at the pinnacle of their success. This would be Sting’s long-awaited return (he was on the shelf for over a year) and as Jim Ross introduces this to us, Bret Hart was in the arena, too, as a special début for the match. Hogan shoves Sting away then forces him to the corner. He doesn’t break clean but Sting blocks a punch attempt and responds in kind with one of his own. Sting rolls away from three elbowdrop attempts then dropkicks Hogan to the outside. Hogan waits around out there then comes back in as the fans chant ‘Boring’ only to get dropkicked back to the outside to waste more time. Sting works a headlock when Hogan returns but Hogan breaks and clotheslines Sting down. Sting no-sells a suplex and pounds at Hogan in the corner. Hogan recovers and dumps Sting and punches him some more! Sting reverses an Irish Whip and Hogan walks lazily into the barricade. Sting tries a Stinger Splash but Hogan was able to get out of the way. Hogan brings Sting back in, hits the big boot and drops the leg for the three-count. Hogan thinks he’s won, but Hart refuses to ring the bell, ring the fucking bell. He says the match didn’t really end and that it must continue. Sting is alive and Stinger splashes Hogan a couple of times, fends off two nWo members, then locks on the Scorpion Death Lock to finish this farce at 12:55. Members of WCW fill the ring to celebrate with Sting. Everyone celebrates despite the fact that Sting was quite clearly pinned cleanly in the ring and won the title on less than honorable circumstances but you take what you can get. Not a good match by any means. *, and that may be a bit generous.
We end Disc Two with Big Show saying that the only reason he has a career is because of Hogan. Hogan introduced him to the business and introduced him to the right people to get his career going.
—Disc Three (3:02:42)—
–Hulk Hogan vs. Curt Henning–
This is from the short-lived XWF promotion. It took place on November 14th, 2001. This was Jimmy’s wrestling company and he brought Hogan back after WCW folded. Hogan claims that he went to Florida with his gear for a photo shoot and he was egged on to have a match and so he did, having a, “great match,” that night. Tony Schiavone and Jerry Lawler are calling the action here which is quite an interesting pairing. Bobby Heenan is in Curt’s corner. Hogan shoves off Curt to start and Curt takes a breather on the outside. Hogan breaks out of a headlock and shoulderblocks Henning to the outside. Curt steps out of a test of strength and fires away with some chops on Hogan. Hogan blocks having his head sent into the turnbuckle so Hogan slams his head into the top turnbuckle, then the second one, and then the third one and finally the floor. Hogan charges with a clothesline and pounds at Henning in the corner. Henning softens up Hogan and hits his Perfect-plex, which Hogan kicks out of. Mind you, this is less than five minutes into the match. Hogan hulks up, hits the big boot and the legdrop ends this at 5:06. Wow, Henning jobbed to Hulk in only 5-minutes. And where was that ‘great match’ Hogan said he had? DUD.
We hear a Hogan interview and Hogan says he is completely blown up right now and that he needs to get in better shape. I’, surprised he’d admit that. Hogan calls XWF the premiere organization right now and he wants their title!
Hogan came back to the WWE and the fans loved him, despite WWE trying to make him a heel. Hogan talks about that match and was very smug (saying no one could match him out there in the ring at Wrestlemania) and seeing Rocky Johnson before the match.
–Hulk Hogan vs. The Rock–
This is their epic match from Wrestlemania X8 taking place on March 17th, 2002. The fan support for Hogan and the heat of this match is just off the charts. Hogan is clearly more over here. The two stare-down to start before jawing at each other. They battle over a lock-up which Hogan wins by shoving Rocky down. Hogan poses and gets a MONSTER pop. Hogan grabs a side headlock and the fans start a Rocky Sucks chant. Hogan shoulderblocks Rock down, poses some more and gets another huge pop. Ross still calls this a mixed reaction even though it is clearly in Hogan’s favor. Rock over-sells some Hogan rights and a Hogan clothesline. Rock ducks a clothesline and returns with a flying clothesline before challenging Hogan to bring it. Rock slugs Hogan to the outside (Hogan couldn’t flip himself over the ropes so he had to roll under) and Rock follows with a forearm to the back. Hogan gets clotheslined down in the ring and tries for a Rock Bottom but Hogan blocks. Hogan drives an elbow into Rock’s head and drops a pair of elbow drops. Rock takes down Hogan but misses a punch and is back suplexed for two. Hogan and Rock exchange chops in the corner. Rock blocks a charge with an elbow but runs into a sidewalk choke slam. Hogan chokes Rocky with tape from his wrist. Rock is sent to the outside and Hogan starts clearing room on the announce table. Rock tries using a chair but the ref takes it and Hogan clotheslines Rock to the mat. We end up back in the ring where the Rock is sent into the referee. Rocky revives quickly and puts Hogan in the sharpshooter. Hogan makes the ropes but the ref isn’t there to break, so Rock drags Hogan to the ring and Hogan taps. There’s still no ref though. Rock kicks at the ref and I like how Rock is playing off the crowd and playing a heel here. Hogan lowblows Rock and Rock Bottoms him. He covers and the ref revives to count to two. Hogan takes off his weight-lifters belt and whips Rock with it. Rock revives and whips Hogan with the belt and nails a Rock Bottom. Hulk kicks out at two and Hulks up and the fans are going crazy. It’s big boot time! It’s the legdrop! One, Two, AND ROCK KICKS OUT AT THREE. The fans thought that was going to be it. Hogan hits another big boot but misses the legdrop. Rock connects with another Rock Bottom but takes his time to cover. In fact, he doesn’t cover at all. Rock hits another Rock Bottom and that sets up the People’s Elbow. Rock covers and that does it at 16:22. Rock and Hogan shake hands after the match. Nash and Hall come in to attack Hogan after the match so Rock makes the save. This allows Rock and Hogan to celebrate in the ring together. The reaction from this crowd was just unreal for this match and it did have that epic feel to it. The match however was standard stuff and given the limitations of Hogan you couldn’t really do much. The two played off the crowd well to deliver an entertaining match but as a wrestling match it just fell flat. ***.
Ross talks about the match and how shocked they were with the crowd reaction Hogan was getting. Hogan was turned face by Canada and Hogan went back to the red and yellow. Edge talks about the love Canada gave Hogan. Hogan prefaces the next match by saying he “gets off on working with HHH.” That’s just gross.
–Hulk Hogan vs. Triple H(c) for the WWE Undisputed Title–
This is from Backlash and it took place on April 21st, 2002. Triple H had come back from his injury about 3 months ago at the Royal Rumble and was a LOT bigger than he was when he left. That resulted in some very slow movement from the usually nimble Triple H. Good things would not happen in this match judging by the size and speed of both men in the ring. Triple H wins a couple of lock-ups and I don’t know if I can keep up with their pace. I only type about 70 wpm and that may not be enough for the action here. Hogan wins the third lock-up and poses but if we’re going on points he’d be down 2-1. Hogan and Triple H throw in a test of strength and I can literally see Hogan starting to get off right now. Triple H powers Hogan down with an overhead wristlock. The four-minutes this match has gone on have felt like 40. Hogan breaks and shoulderblocks Triple H down. Lawler likens this to a chess match. I think a chess match would be more interesting than this right now. Hogan is sent to the corner but he ducks away from a charging Triple H and backdrops him. He follows with a clothesline and it’s time for ten punches in the corner. Hogan telegraphs a back drop and Hogan pays for it with an elbow to the back. He charges Hogan but is backdropped to the outside. The two “brawl” outside, possibly to kill time. Triple H is sent to the barricade but recovers quickly and tries a suplexing. Hogan blocks and counters with one of his own. We return to the ring and Triple H tries a Pedigree but Hogan trips him up, slingshots him to the corner and follows with a schoolboy for two. Hogan sends Trips to the corner and follows with a running clothesline. He loved that move so much he does it again before throwing in a neckbreaker for two. The fans are completely asleep right now. Triple H takes out Hogan’s knee and Triple H starts softening up that knee. He wrings it like a spinning leg-lock before trying for the figure four. Hogan kicks out of it but he can’t maintain a vertical base and Triple H goes right back after the knee. Triple H softens him up some more and this time applies the Figure Four. Hogan is able to reverse it after Triple H cheated and used the ropes so Triple H changes tactics and uses the sleeper. That’s an appropriate move for this match. Hogan weakly elbows out of it and back suplexes HHH (with the use of the bad leg). Hogan slugs away and hammers Triple H down with a forearm. It’s big boot time and Hogan hits the legdrop. Hogan covers but Jericho pulls the referee out and hits the referee. Jericho lays out Hogan with the chair and puts the referee back into the ring. Triple H sees Jericho trying to revive the ref and instead of covering Hogan he goes after Jericho. Jericho is clotheslined to the outside and Triple H goes after Hogan. Hogan starts hulking up and now the fans are starting to get into the match. It’s another big boot and another legdrop but this time the legdrop misses. Triple H hits the Pedigree and covers as the referee revives. Hebner starts counting but is now laid out by the Undertaker. Taker gets the chair and lays out HHH. Undertaker drapes Hogan over Triple H but Hogan hulks up and doesn’t want to win that way. He clotheslines Taker out of the ring, hits the legdrop on HHH and covers for the pinfall and the title at 22:04. Triple H is pissed (and cut open) but they hug it out after he regains his composure. It’s really something incredible when this match is quite possibly the worst on the whole collection. I don’t think it is based only on the last few minutes but the first 20 were soooo boring. It was just terrible to sit through. ¼*, thanks to the somewhat decent last two minutes.
Edge talks about idolizing Hogan growing up and how they were a natural to team-up and Edge notes they had good chemistry together (because Edge did all the work while Hogan stood on the apron).
–Billy & Chuck(c) vs. Edge & Hulk Hogan for the WWE Tag Team Titles–
Taken from: Best of SmackDown Tenth Anniversary DVD
This is from the July 4th, 2002 SmackDown. Hogan and Chuck start things off. Hogan slugs Chuck down and drops some elbows on his foe. Chuck cowers to his corner and tags in Billy. Billy charges but he’s sent into Edge and Billy becomes a pinball between Hogan and Edge rights. Edge is tagged in and he manages to evade a military press on Billy and holds him and slams him down, like a reverse X-factor. Chuck comes in and the duo is able to take control with some double-teaming. Edge and Chuck exchange blows in the corner leading to Chuck doing a double-underhook throw out of the corner. Billy and Chuck double team Edge, drawing the ire of Hogan. A suplex from Billy gets two. Chuck bodyslams Edge and elbowdrops him for two. The fans start chanting for Hogan (We want Hogan) but they don’t get him yet. Edge is tossed to the outside and Billy holds him up for a Rico superkick. Rico hits Billy, but Billy recovers quickly and bulldogs Edge into the steel steps. Edge is rolled back into the ring where Chuck covers for two. Billy comes in with a sunset flip for two. Chuck comes back in but ducks away from Chuck and slams him face-first down to the mat. This allows Hogan to get tagged in and the fans erupt. He cleans house and even throws in the double noggin-knocker. A big boot sends Billy down but he’s felled by a Chuck superkick for two. B&C double team Hogan but get taken down with a double clothesline. Edge is tagged in and he flies in off the top with a double clothesline. Edge hits the Edge-u-cution on Chuck and preps for the Spear on Billy, only to get tripped up by Rico. So Hogan drops Rico on the barrier to give him his comeuppance. Billy runs into a spear and Edge covers but Chuck pulls Edge off at two. So Hogan comes in and he and Edge deliver a double big boot. Edge hits a leg-drop, followed by Hogan, and Edge covers for the pinfall and the titles at 10:04. The ending segment was fun to watch and Hogan did exactly what he should’ve here; stayed on the apron while Edge did all the work and come in to hit his high spots. This was an entertaining tag match. **3/4.
Hulk’s thoughts about Wrestlemania XIX were getting even with him. Hogan wanted to have Vince in his world and he was surprised how great a worker Vince was. We see the whole video leading up to the match which is pretty cool.
–Hulk Hogan vs. Vince McMahon in a Street Fight–
Taken from: McMahon DVD
This is from March 30th, 2003 and you may have heard of the event; Wrestlemania XIX. If Hogan loses tonight, he must retire. Hogan’s entrance alone takes up about 3 minutes. McMahon slaps Hogan and the street fight is on. Hogan tackles McMahon and chokes away. He tries to ground and pound but McMahon is covering up. So Hogan stomps at him in the corner instead. McMahon comes back with a hammerlock and a test of strength that McMahon uses to keep Hogan on his knees. McMahon tosses Hogan to the outside and McMahon tries to sandwich Hogan’s head between the post and the chair but Hogan quickly moves out of the way. Hogan grabs the chair and McMahon takes a wicked shot that cuts him open. Hogan finds another chair and slams it into the back of McMahon, then accidentally hits the Spanish announcer, Hugo, who blades as well. A McMahon low blow turns the tide and he grabs the chair, slamming it into Hogan’s face and he’s cut open now. McMahon finds a ladder underneath the ring, sets up Hogan on the Spanish Announce Table, climbs to the top of the ladder and mocks Hogan, then legdrops Hogan through the table. McMahon brings Hogan back into the ring and covers for two. He’s pissed and covers again and Hogan again kicks out. McMahon finds a steel pipe under the ring and there’s an awesome camera angle of him peering over the ring apron into the ring. He gets in the ring but a low blow stops him from using that pipe. Roddy Piper makes his return to the WWE by running into the mach, spits at Hogan and kicks McMahon. Piper finds the lead pipe and uses it on Hogan. McMahon covers but Hogan again kicks out. McMahon gets the pipe again and the referee interferes only to get tossed out by McMahon. McMahon uses the lead pipe and hits the legdrop and cover but Hogan kicks out and hulks up. The crowd like this. Hogan recovers, tosses the crooked referee, punches McMahon, hits the big boot and hits three leg drops to finish things at 21:28. Hogan celebrates in the ring for a few minutes when Shane McMahon makes his way to ringside. He’s only there to check on his father. I thought the pacing of this match was done very well. Even though it’s twenty minutes long, it didn’t feel like it. It was a really enjoyable street fight between the two oldies. ***.
Two years later, on April 2nd, 2005, Hogan was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame. Hogan gets a huge ovation from everyone in attendance and looks a bit emotional at all of this affection from the fans. The fans even start a ‘Thank You Hogan’ chant. Hogan thanks Sylvester Stallone for coming out to the show and doing Rocky III with him. He also thanks his wife, Linda, who he met during his second run in the WWE. He goes on to call Vince McMahon his hero, too. He also credits Andre the Giant for giving him a love for the business. He ends by saying that with him in the Hall of Fame Hulkamania is immortal.
Shawn Michaels talks about Hogan still being a draw despite being old. We get a recap video for Hogan and Michaels and their match. The two teamed up in a tag match and after they won, Michaels hit Hogan with sweet chin music.
–Hulk Hogan vs. Shawn Michaels in a Legend vs. Icon Match–
This is from Summerslam 2005 held on August 21st. Michaels goes for some lock-ups but he’s shrugged off by the bigger and stronger Hogan. Hogan shoulderblocks Michaels and HBK bails to the outside. Michaels returns and lands some token punches before being sent to the corner. He ends up laying on the corner and Hogan boots him up and Michaels ends up crotching himself. Michaels is sent headfirst into the corner and Michaels is bumping like a madman right now. Michaels returns with a thumb to the eye and he’s in control now. Still, Hogan dumps Michaels to the outside. Hogan greets Michaels’ return with a clothesline but Michaels comes right back with some smacks to the face. Hogan reverses an Irish Whip and Michaels flips over the turnbuckle to the apron. Michaels slaps Hogan again but Hogan knocks Michaels to the outside. They brawl outside and Michaels is sent into the barrier. Hogan tries sending Michaels into the ringpost but Michaels escapes and Hogan is sent into the ringpost instead. Hogan is sent again into the corner and Michaels goes after that area over the eye by pounding at Hogan in the corner. Hogan’s been busted open now. Michaels grabs a sleeper and Hogan is bleeding all over Michaels’ arm. Hogan manages to break out of the sleeper with a side suplex. Michaels returns with a flying fore-arm and a kip-up. Michaels heads upstairs for an elbow drop but Hogan rolls out of the way and starts hulking up. Hogan tries a big boot but Michaels hits a flying forearm that knocks Hogan and the ref down. Michaels kips up again and puts Hogan in the Sharpshooter. Another ref runs in but he’s bumped when Hogan kicks off Michaels into the ref. With no ref, Michaels lowblows Hogan. Michaels gets a chair and lays out Hogan with it. Michaels continues the assault with a flying elbow drop. He starts tuning up the band and connects with Sweet Chin Music. He covers, the ref counts, and Hogan kicks out at three. It’s Hulk-up time again! Big Boot! Leg Drop! It’s over at 21:24. And who says that Michaels doesn’t job? It was a clean win, too. Hogan celebrates until Michaels interrupts him. Michaels offers a handshake I am impressed these guys went over 20 minutes and it was actually watchable for the entire running time. The beginning was a bit rocky with Hogan controlling way too much of the offense but once Michaels got into carrying the match it was well-done. The overbooking was too much at times but I had a great time watching this match. ***1/2.
Hogan talks about the character and even mentions how his friends are dead because of abuse and how the Hogan character, being so positive, was great for Terry Bollea the man.
—Disc Four (1:29:11)—
This was the Bonus Disc! Of course I’d want more Hogan!
–Hulk Hogan vs. Tito Santana–
This was really the reason I wanted the bonus disc. This is from MSG and it took place on March 24th, 1980. This was during Hogan’s heel period and he has Freddie Blassie in his corner. This seemed to be the main event for that night. Tito was co-holder of the tag titles here. Hogan charges with a knee to the back of Tito to start and wails away on him in the corner. Hogan whips him to the buckle before delivering a clothesline. Hogan lifts up Tito and slams his back into the corners before bodyslamming him. A knee drop follows but an elbow drop misses twice. Tito ducks a clothesline and fires away at Hogan, even stomping his foot before finally knocking him to the ground. Tito hits a dropkick and goes to a reverse chinlock. Hogan breaks and hiptosses Tito before finally hitting an elbowdrop. Hogan drives a forearm into Tito’s back after a whip to the ropes and Tito hurtles to the outside. Hogan grabs Tito in a headlock and he works him over with that for a bit before Tito breaks. He sends Hogan to the corner and tries monkey flipping him out of it but Hogan is too strong and he shoves off Tito. Hogan suplexes Tito and covers for the pinfall at 8:12. Wow, that was like a total squash, especially over the current tag champs. I guess the thing here was that Hogan had the tights of Tito. Still, Tito was just dominated here. I didn’t know he was a JTTS this early! There was nothing spectacular about this match at all. **.
–Hulk Hogan vs. Sonny Rogers & Chuck Greenly–
This is an AWA match from August 8th, 1981. Hogan has Johnny Valiant in his corner. I don’t think the jobbers stand much of a chance. It seems that Hogan has to defeat both men to win. He starts off with Greenly but he tosses him around and Greenly tags out to Rogers. Rogers is similarly tossed around and overpowered. The other guy runs in and both guys are tossed down. This is actually tough to watch. The crowd is just dead right now. Rogers gets in some token jobber offense and the two double-team Hogan but Hogan again just shoves them off. Hogan bodyslams Rogers, hits the legdrop and suplexes him. Hogan bodyslams Greenly, tosses him to the corner and sends Rogers into him. Hogan grabs them both in a double body-vice and both jobbers submit at 4:22. This was terrible, but it got Hogan over as a powerhouse and the fans started cheering him for it. DUD.
–Hulk Hogan(c) vs. Terry Funk for the WWE Title–
Taken from: Best of Saturday’s Night Main Event DVD
We see the pre-match sketch of Terry and Jesse by the pool talking about the upcoming Hogan match. Terry wants to be on SI like Hogan was. I don’t know if there was a reason for Funk getting a title shot on this January 4th, 1986 episode of SNME. I wrote this about the original review but we see a special report that shows how this match came about. Terry used the branding iron on Hogan in a Denver match back in 1985. Hogan has the ugliest green tights on. Funk gets clotheslined to the outside and runs into the arms of his manager, Jimmy Hart. Hogan has Junkyard Dog in his corner. Funk chops away at Hogan but is clotheslined to the outside in response. Funk comes back and sends Hogan to the ropes, then drops down. Hogan just steps on him as he runs by, four times, and Funk again bails to the outside. Funk returns to chop away at Hogan, to which Hogan responds with rights and lefts. Funk is sent to the corner and ends up on the apron, leading to Hogan him bringing him back in and hitting a belly to back suplex for two. Funk turns the tide with a low blow then heads upstairs. Hogan crotches him, then atomic drops him. A running clothesline leads to an elbow drop. Hogan comes off the ropes but is distracted by Hart, who pulled his leg. Hart hides beneath the ring, the ref’s attention is diverted and Funk starts choking Hogan with the tape around his wrist. Funk piledrives Hogan for two. Funk stomps at the Hulkster until the crowd revives Hogan and he hulks up. Big boot sends Funk to the apron. Hogan tries to suplex him in but Hart interferes and strikes Hogan with the branding iron. Funk covers but Hogan’s foot makes the ropes. Funk argues with the ref then turns around and is clotheslined down by Hogan. Hogan covers and that’s enough to finish things at 8:27. This was a really good, different Hogan match. It was incredibly different from the standard matches he did. ***.
–Hulk Hogan vs. Harley Race–
This is another Saturday’s Night Main Event match, this coming from the March 12th, 1988 episode. I feel like I’ve seen this one before but I can’t find a review for it, nor any rating for the match so I guess I haven’t. Hogan is no longer the champ at this point. Heenan says Hogan has been humbled and Hulkamania with it, but Hogan disagrees with that in his interview. Race drops elbows on Hogan as Hogan enters the ring but Hogan no-sells. Race headbutts him but Hogan no-sells that and slugs away at Race. Hogan finally rips the shirt off and now the bell rings to signal the match has started. Hogan clotheslines Race down a pair of times before clotheslining Race over the ropes and onto the table at ringside. Hogan follows and posts Race’s shoulder. Race tries a piledriver after Heenan distracts Hogan but Hogan backdrops out of that and sends Race into the post again. Hogan bodyslams Race onto the mat and stomps away. He brings Race into the ring and chokes at him with the tape he had on his fist and Ventura is incensed that Hogan is getting away with these blatant violation of the rules. Heenan interferes and this allows Race to take over with headbutts. Race belly to belly suplexes Hogan down and delivers a knee to his face. Hogan is piledriven to the mat and dumped to the outside. Race sets Hogan on the table and tries to headbutt him through the table but Hogan ducks out of the way and Race breaks the “steel” table (Vince’s words, not mine) in half, though not completely broken. Race no-sells the steel table and whacks away at Hogan inside the ring. Race head upstairs and hits a flying headbutt off the top. He covers but it is time to hulkisize! Hogan whips Race into the corner and clotheslines him before delivering the legdrop to end this at 6:36. Heenan attacks from behind but Hogan won’t have any of that and Heenan runs to the back. This was surprisingly energetic, as it should since it was less than 7 minutes. I really liked how Hogan was very determined here, storyline wise, and it made for a much rougher match. ***.
–1990 Royal Rumble–
Taken from: Royal Rumble Anthology Vol. 1 DVD
This starts with Hogan’s entrance at #25. Hulk Hogan is in at #25 and the crowd just erupts. Hogan eliminates Snuka, then takes out Haku with a hackneyed big boot. Hogan finally rips his shirt off as Santana is eliminated by Warrior. Warrior and Martel square off as does Hogan and Honky. Honky chokes Hogan with the torn shirt. Shawn Michaels comes in at #26 to a big ovation, but he doesn’t last long. Hogan throws out Honky Tonk Man, Michaels is sent out by Warrior who then throws out Martel, leaving only Warrior and Hogan in the ring, and the fans nearly shit their pants out of excitement. The two biggest stars of the WWE squaring off in the same ring for the first time. Shoulderblocks have no affect for either man, so they criss cross. Warrior ducks a Hogan clothesline, then take each other out with a clothesline. Both guys are down on the mat at #27 enters the ring, the Barbarian. Barbarian as his way with Hogan and Warrior as Rick Rude runs in a bit early as our 28th entrant to work over Warrior. Hogan is knocked down and the heels gang up on Warrior. Hogan charges the heels and Warrior ends up eliminated. He runs in and knocks down the two heels, then runs out to the back. So Hogan is left alone with Rude and Barbarian as Hercules enters at #29. We know already that Perfect is #30 so it’s just a matter of time. Hercules goes to work on the heels, and sends both into the boot of Hogan. Jesse says the guys are all sucking air (meaning exhausted) and we’re just biding our time, waiting for Perfect and here he comes. Barbarian accidentally kicks Rude and is dropped over the top by Hercules, leading to a final four of Hercules, Rick Rude, Hulk Hogan and Mr. Perfect. Rude clotheslines Hercules out and Hogan is double-teamed by the heels. Heel miscommunication ensues, and Perfect is punched out onto the apron by Rude. Hogan sends Rude to the ropes and Perfect pulls the rope down, leading Rude to be eliminated. Hogan slingshots Perfect in and its one-on-one. Perfect softens up Hogan, then hits the Perfect-Plex, because he can you. Hogan no sells it, hulks up, pounds on Perfect, slingshots him to the turnbuckle and the ringpost, clotheslines him, then tosses him out to end it at 58:44. Hogan is your winner. I heard Perfect was supposed to win this but Hogan had it changed. Still, this was the best Rumble so far, with tons of cool spots, awesome moments, and very little dead periods. This was the third ever Rumble, and the formula was really perfected here on how to put on the best Rumble they could. ****. Hogan celebrates to end the show.
–Hulk Hogan vs. Earthquake–
Taken from: Summerslam Anthology Vol. I DVD
Earthquake has Dino Bravo and Jimmy Hart in his corner. Okerlund interviews Hogan, who has Bossman in his corner. Hogan dedicates this match to Tugboat, who was injured at the hands of Earthquake. Hogan comes out, rips the shirt and Vince notes he looks like an, “angry Hulk.” We start with Earthquake tossing around Hogan. Hogan is sent to the corner but lifts his boot to stagger Earthquake. He clotheslines him but still he doesn’t go down. Hogan eventually slugs down Earthquake, then slugs down his two comrades at ringside. Earthquake bails and Hogan follows, going after Bravo as Bossman goes after Earthquake. Bravo, Bossman, Hogan and Earthquake end up in the ring, with Bravo and Earthquake eating a double-boot. That’s not a DQ? Bossman is ushered out, allowing Bravo to attack Hogan from behind. Earthquake drops an elbow for two. Earthquake heads upstairs (!!!) and hits a double axe-handle. Earthquake then locks in the Boston Crab, which Hogan breaks by getting to the ropes. Hogan bails to the outside where he’s bodyslammed by Bravo. Earthquake misses an elbow drop and Hogan tries for a bodyslam, but his back is busted up already and Earthquake falls on top of him for two. Earthquake goes to work on the back and locks in a bearhug. Hogan breaks out of it but Earthquake is too much and hits the butt-splash. He goes it again and covers, but Hogan kicks out and Hulks up. Hogan bodyslams Earthquake and hits the legdrop but Bravo distracts the ref, allowing Jimmy to come in and break up the pin. Hogan tosses Hart into Earthquake and everyone ends up outside. Hart hits Earthquake with the megaphone by mistake and Hogan bodyslams Earthquake onto a table (which doesn’t break) and Hogan beats the count back in to earn the victory at 13:26. Weird that Hogan didn’t get a pinfall out of that. Earthquake attacks Hogan after the match and Bossman has to make the save. Hogan and Bossman pose in the ring for what seems like forever. This was a very watchable match and Earthquake good a decent match out of Hogan. **.
–Mean Gene Interview Hulk Hogan–
This is from the WWE Raw Homecoming on October 3rd, 2005. I guess it is fitting we end with this. This is Raw’s return to USA Network. Hogan talks about his match against Michaels and then says he wants to wrestle Steve Austin.
Well, what more could you ask for if you’re a Hogan fan? This really has ALL of his big matches and any Hogan fan would love this. I can’t hold it against the collection that it had so many repeats from other DVD’s because an Anthology should collect all his most prolific matches and this does that in spades. While it doesn’t have the best match quality it does have some of the most memorable moments of Hogan’s long career.
1) Hogan talks about his early days in Wrestling (2:05)
I think they took this from Hulk STILL Rules. Hogan was in a band, making more money than his father but getting into wrestling when wrestler’s came to see his shows. He recounts the leg-breaking story and quitting the business a few times before the Brisco’s talked him into talking with Vince where Hogan got back into wrestling.
2) Iron Sheik talks about his match against Hogan (1:10)
Sheik says that he was offered $100,000 to break Hogan’s leg and bring the belt to another company. Sheik says he is Muslim and he won’t bite the hand that feed him. In the end, he didn’t double-cross the WWE for the AWA.
This is the standard Fullscreen/Dolby Digital 5.1 offering WWE usually puts out. It sounds great and it looks great and that’s all you need. WWE always gets high marks here.
C) Packaging / Liner Notes
This is similar to the Title championship collections in that it opens like a book with the liner notes and matches on the opposite side of the DVD pages.
D) Easter Eggs
None on this collection.
We start with the usual array of WWE commercials (Hogan Knows Best, VH1 Classic, Brian Pillman’s DVD, Vince’s DVD, The Marine – which looks beyond terrible with the corniest dialogue I’ve seen and of course the Don’t Try This At Home message). I said what I needed to say in the DVD review. Any Hogan fan would love this and it caters to them. There are many Hogan fans out there and this really has all of his great matches that any casual fan would want. For Hogan fans, it is the highest recommendation. For wrestling fans looking for wrestling workrate, you’ll want to look elsewhere.
9.0-9.5 Near Perfect, Highly Recommended
8.0-8.5 Really good disc, Recommended
7.0-7.5 Good DVD, Mildly recommended
6.0-6.5 Above Average DVD. Mildest of mild recommendations
5.0-5.5 Decent all around disc, but catch it on TV
4.0-4.5 Great Movie but horrible DVD
3.0-3.5 Horrible movie but great DVD
2.0-2.5 There’s at least some merit to this DVD, but not much.
1.0-1.5 Horrible DVD, don’t even bother
0.0-0.5 Worst DVD ever