I’m going to go back through these and update some stuff since this is the weirdest Mania week ever. 1-5 anyway. Enjoy them. I know everyone is bored.
April 7, 1986
Long Island, New York
Los Angeles, California (Yep, 3 locations and the ideas only get worse.)
Commentators: (NY) Vince McMahon/Susan St. James, (Chic) Gorilla Monsoon/ “Mean” Gene Okerlund/Cathy Lee Crosby, (LA) Jesse “The Body” Ventura/Elvira/”Lord” Alfred Hayes
- Vince is already in the ring at the Nassau Coliseum to introduce his commentary partner and “biggest actress in the world” Susan St. James. If you are like me and have no idea who she was, I looked her up. She was on a show called McMillan & Wife, which was both a thing, and apparently popular in the 80’s. So Vince is hitting a home run with the celebs already.
- Ray Charles sings America the Beautiful, probably the best part of our New York portion of the show.
- We visit Gene in Chicago because apparently we needed to be 30 minutes in before we saw any actual wrestling.
- Then we go to Roddy Piper with his entourage and he proceeds to say he will quit “boxing, wrestling, tiddly winks and girls…” but made it clear he would keep Bob Orton. Yes, it WAS a weird promo. Why do you ask?
-We start off in New York
“Mr. Wonderful” Paul Orndorff vs “Magnificent” Muraco (w/ Mr. Fuji)
What a way to start what was supposed to be the second biggest event in wrestling history. All we got was a short brawl that ended up on the floor for a count out. Both athletes looked great but didn’t deliver shit in the ring, and I personally like both guys. The crowd chanting “bullshit” on your first match is never usually a good sign. What a hot start Vince. 0-1
Winner: Double Countout
- Mr. T is with his corner men “Smoking” Joe Frazier and the Haiti Kid, they literally say nothing of interest.
Intercontinental Championship: George “The Animal” Steele vs (C) “Macho Man” Randy Savage (w/ Elizabeth)
I was giving her shit earlier, but Susan at least seems to get the story of the matches and what they are trying to get over… looking at you Raw announce team. The crowd is hot for this and sadly all they got out of it was a lot of running away from Savage. Run, cheap shot the moron, rinse and repeat. Savage had to be livid with the quality of this garbage. The Animal even got to kick out of the big elbow which is blasphemy of the highest order. On a positive note this match had an actual winner. We have had 2 matches and they both sucked ass. 0-2
Winner: Savage got the pin with both feet on the ropes.
- Hey, let’s waste some more time! Gene is in Chicago with Bill Fralic and Big John Studd, where we learn that Bill is way better at talking shit than Studd.
- Vince and Susan discuss Jake’s snake. Usually I take some guff from people for being nice in some of these reviews…I feel that won’t be an issue with this.
George Wells vs Jake “The Snake” Roberts
Jake takes a couple of nice bumps for Wells early on but this really didn’t have any time to develop or tell a story. Luckily this was quick and mostly painless, and Jake’s DDT was always a thing of beauty. Oh, the match was still garbage, but it was FAST garbage, and we got to see a snake. 0-3
Winner: Jake with the DDT for the pin.
- Vince and Susan again say nothing that adds to the presentation of the show. What the hell were they doing here?
- Video recap of the Piper and Mr. T feud. At least this helped build up a damn match.
- Jesse is with the Hulkster in L.A. discussing his ribs and Bundy.
- Vince and Susan AGAIN SAY NOTHING.
- Finally the Fink introduces our Guest Ring Announcer, Joan Rivers.
- Joan then intros our guest Judges- Darryl Dawkins (NBA breaker of Backboards and career 12.0 ppg), Cab Calloway (Old Jazz singer and Bandleader) and G. Gordon Liddy (Fucking WATERGATE y’all). Then our Guest Timekeeper – Herb (An apparent Burger King spokesperson of some sort). The literal biggest stars of the 80’s people.
Boxing: “Rowdy” Roddy Piper (w/Bob Orton/Lou Duva) vs Mr. T )w/”Smoking” Joe Frazier/Haiti Kid/Jim Connolly)
If Roddy wasn’t public enemy number 1 in the 1980’s then this would have had zero point. That being said, it still had zero point, Piper got cheered for half of this mess. Two men that should have at least been halfway decent at faking a punch put on the worst exhibition of “boxing” I have ever seen. I don’t know if they though they could just wing it without practice or just didn’t give a shit. It was god damned awful. The worst part about it was that this was supposed to be the MAIN EVENT of the New York part of the program. It’s been a while since I watched this show but it is an atrocity. This needs some serious help to avoid the worst WrestleMania moniker. 0-4
Winner: Mr. T by DQ when Piper bodyslams him.
- Vince and Susan discuss that pile of crap. Susan is better than Vince in every way.
-Thank God we are headed to Chicago. Eat shit New York.
- Gorilla welcomes us to Chicago and intros Gene and their co-commentator Cathy Lee Crosby (She was a tennis player, actually played Wonder Woman once and hosted a show called That’s Incredible!…yeah me either guys.).
Women’s Championship: Velvet McIntyre vs (C) Fabulous Moolah
Have you ever wanted to see your Mammaw fight another lady at Walmart in bathing suits? It honestly, without any hyperbole whatsoever that would be better than this one minute piece of dog shit. This show has taken me a week to re-watch and it is all because of the general lack of quality in every single part of this production. I have no idea how they made it to WrestleMania 3 after this abortion. My notes for this match just said, verbatim “God Fucking Awful!!!!”. Only (checks notes…cries) 7 more matches to go! 0-5
Winner: Moolah got the pin after a missed second rope splash from Velvet.
- More time wasting with our commentary team.
- The Soviet National anthem is at least a good distraction.
Flag Match: Nikolai Volkoff (w/”Classy” Freddie Blassie) vs Corporal Kirchner
When I was eight or nine years old I was playing on a merry go round when some older kids decided to push it as fast as they could. Us being smaller we were just happy that they were making an effort so we stayed on thinking that it would be fun to go really fast. Well when they got that bastard up to like 55 miles per hour my grip slipped and I fell ribs first into one of those spinning bars and knocked the wind out of myself. Also while that fun bit of action was happening I was being dragged by the damn thing until it stopped. That was not only a more fun experience than this match, it also didn’t make me want to root for the Soviets. I award this crap no points, and may God have mercy on it’s soul. Fuck WrestleMania 2. 0-6
Winner: Corporal gets the win after hitting Volkoff with a cane.
- Gene does the introductions for the Battle Royal while Ernie Ladd joins commentary.
- I’m tired of making these jokes but Clara (Where’s the Beef? lady of an 80’s meme) is the guest timekeeper, while Dick Butkus (legitimate star) and Ed “Too Tall” Jones (15 year NFL Veteran) are the guest officials. Holy shit Vince was Menudo busy?
Wrestlers vs Football Players Battle Royal: Jimbo Covert, Pedro Morales, Tony Atlas, Ted Arcidi, Harvey Martin, Dan Spivey (looking like a K-Mart Hulk Hogan), Hillbilly Jim, King Tonga, Iron Sheik, Ernie Holmes, B. Brian Blair, “Jumping” Jim Brunzell, “Big” John Studd, Bill Fralic, Bret Hart, Jim Neidhart, Russ Francis, Bruno Sammartino, William “The Refrigerator” Perry and Andre the Giant
This was every single Battle Royal you have ever seen, except worse because half the competitors have never been in a ring before. Andre winning was a no brainer but in no way was a lousy Battle Royal going to save this shit. I feel worse and worse about being a wrestling fan after every match. 0-7
Winner: Andre by lastly eliminating Bret by tossing him on to the Anvil.
- Vince and Susan are with Piper who apparently found some drugs after his “boxing match” and took them all.
- Gene is with Jimbo Covert who says nothing and then the Iron Sheik who also says nothing but is at least entertaining while doing it.
- We waste even MORE time with Gorilla and Cathy. The pacing on this show is so bad it’s like a WCW produced PPV.
Tag Team Championships: (C) The Dream Team (Greg Valentine/Brutus Beefcake w/ “Luscious” Johnny Valiant) vs The British Bulldogs (Davy Boy Smith/Dynamite Kid w/Captain Lou/Ozzy Osbourne in a Pink Miami Vice suit)
We finally have a decent match only 26 hours into the show. It wasn’t spectacular but it was a well planned out and executed tag match. Beefcake in particular didn’t look as bad as he usually did during this period and the rest of the guys did just fine. The bump that Kid took in the last sequence was brutal, he never got back in the ring to celebrate winning the match. Not sure if that was planned that way or if he took an awkward bump. These guys are my heroes for not stinking up the joint and I finally have a small ray of sunshine in the darkness that is this show. 1-8
Winner: Davy pinned Valentine after ramming Greg’s head into Dynamite’s on the top rope.
- After the match they have an awkward scene in the ring with Ozzy and Lou celebrating with Cathy Lee and the belts while Davy is on the floor trying to check on Dynamite. Eventually Davy gets to say a couple words but poor Dynamite was hurt bad.
- Gorilla and Cathy Lee sign off for Chicago.
- Vince and Susan are back to once again add nothing to the show
-Finally we head to L.A. for our last portion of the show.
- Jesse “The Body” Ventura, “Lord” Alfred Hayes and Elvira’s um… talents welcome us to the last part of the show and run down the card. God bless Elvira.
Hercules Hernandez (in an actual Hercules get up that he should have kept) vs Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat
Both guys looked like they were in incredible shape and worked an OK match. The bad part is even an average match like this stands out in the mountain of shit that surrounds it. This was about as good as you are going to get out of Hercules and both guys deserve credit for not following the night’s trend of making me want to watch Golden Girls instead. Two decent matches in a row is a miracle for this show. 2-9
Winner: Ricky gets the win after a top rope bodypress.
- I want to point out that the arena is super dark and the front row opposite the hard cam only has like 5 people in it. Weird to see that.
“Adorable” Adrian Adonis (w/Jimmy Hart) vs Uncle Elmer
Adrian was in full “Adorable” mode here and the 1980’s don’t let me down by IMMEDIATELY starting a “Faggot” chant. Why were we such terrible people then (and now TBH)? Adrian as always was a bumping machine but Elmer (Who was wearing a brand new red polo shirt under his overalls…an odd fashion choice for a hillbilly) is the dirt worst. We fall back into junk territory with this one, Adrian tried but he wasn’t a miracle worker. 2-10
Winner: Adrian gets the pin after a top rope forearm.
- Alfred is with Hogan and proceeds to do the impossible by making a Hogan interview uninteresting. I hate Alfred.
Terry/Hoss Funk (w/ Jimmy Har)t vs Junkyard Dog/Tito Santana
I noticed one of the security people walking the wrestlers to the ring looked like one of Dalton’s bouncers from Roadhouse and it totally was. With two people from Roadhouse near a match I can’t be mad at it. This was a fun, house show like, tag match that didn’t break any new ground or anything but was at least entertaining. Terry’s crazy ass made Dory more interesting. Dory was technically great as always. JYD and Tito were over enough that the fans stayed into it. Another decent match makes me happy. 3-11
Winner: Terry gets the pin after a shot with the megaphone on JYD.
- Time to set up the cage…prepare to waste time.
- We get a recap of the Bundy and Hogan feud.
- Gene visits Hulk, Hillbilly Jim and Dr. Bob at Hogan’s private gym. Hogan accidentally creates Vader’s entire gimmick by saying ” I feel no pain! I fear no man!”
- The Body is with Bundy and The Brain discussing Hogan’s imminent demise.
- We cut to Elvira’s boobs and I am OK with it.
- Vince and Susan waste more time. I know they are setting a cage up but if they hadn’t done these 20 minute gab fests 4 other times during the show it wouldn’t come off as so Busch League.
- Special Ring Announcer Tommy Lasorda intros our Timekeeper Ricky Schroeder (Silver Spoons…he gets booed loudly) and our guest Official Robert Conrad (Jim West…Desperado, Rough Riders you don’t want notto).
WWE Championship/Steel Cage: King Kong Bundy (w/ Bobby “The Brain ” Heenan) vs (C) Hulk Hogan
This was a perfectly acceptable 1980’s Hulk Hogan main event match. Hogan and his taped ribs played all the hits and kept the crowd excited throughout. Bundy did a great job convincing the crowd that he had a hope in Hell of actually walking out with the title. If this main evented any other show I’d be just fine. Sadly, this show needed saving in a big way and they just couldn’t deliver with the talent involved. 3-12 because they needed to save this and totally did not.
Winner: Hogan escapes the cage after leaving Bundy bloody.
- After winning our “hero” attacks Bobby for being smaller than him and proceeds to prove that Brain was the best bumper in the match. Then poses to the cheers of an audience that chants slurs at people.
- Vince and Susan AGAIN, this time to say goodbye.
Overall Thoughts: This show was a piece of garbage. The pacing, poor matches, bad commentary, lighting issues and a plethora of other amateurish problems place this as not only one of the worst WrestleManias ever but one of the worst shows I’ve seen PERIOD (Non- Heroes of Wrestling Division). Now that I’ve got this review in the can I am happy to announce that I will never watch this crap ever again. Sorry for the negativity but i’m supposed to LIKE wrestling and this one really took it out of me.
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