Olde Timey #10
Phoebus Apollo back for another Olde Timey Tape Review. I'm tired like hell this morning, so the review better be worth it. My short intro for those of you who are new...
The Olde Timey Tape Review: Digging back through the annals of wrestling history in true Orwellian style, rewatching footage from a time of classics, a time of forgotten memories. The Flying Von Erich's, Dick the Bruiser, Ernie Ladd, Lou Thesz, Harley Race, the "Nature Boy" Buddy Rogers, the Iron Sheik, Abdullah the Butcher - these are among countless others appear who appear in these records. It's a time when anything could happen - and a time when anything did.
It was a better time.
(Or so they tell me.)
Disclaimer: The following recap is in "Recap-A-Pinion" format. This means I watch the program and type at the same time, with any further changes being grammatical or spelling. The point of the recap in this format is to try to keep the impression "live", so you get a glimpse of this old wrestling footage.
That said, let's get on with the "action"...
It's timey for Olde Timey!
International Wrestling Alliance event once again! This is the same taping style as the last Olde Timey review. Magnificent Maurice with Johnny Barend vs. Dory Dixon with the Sailor Art Thomas (I issue a correction to previous articles which referred to his first name as "Arn"). Two out of three falls (as always). These four where all in the last Olde Timey (Johnny Barend was Johnny "Perez" in the previous one due to a inept announcer who can't enunciate his name). This is the same year, 1963, as the last Olde Timey review. Maurice and Thomas start off and Thomas quickly finds himself in the opposing corner being beaten. Dory Dixon is in, the "Calypso Kid", and a few underwhelming exchanges occur, which I leave out due to their disinterest. The Sailor flexes his muscles, then Maurice and the Sailor challenge each other in a dueling wristlock which Thomas fights off with one hand. Barend gets in, he tries a wristlock duel with Thomas and Thomas fights him off. Now the double dueling wristlock where both Maurice and Barend fight Thomas, but Thomas tosses them both off (I've seen this dueling wristlock spot in other broadcasts). Commercial break.
We return from the commercial break, and since I'm trying to cut my Olde Timeys short I'll leave out some filler match material while I go revise some references to this event with a few quick searches...
Okay, I'm back now, with maybe 3-4 minutes missed. Dory Dixon is going crazy with his drop kicks and goes for the first successful pin. Another commercial break. Maybe that brief break cut out a little too much from that last segment. Oh well.
Dory Dixon and Sailor Art Thomas have one fall, Johnny Barend and the Magnificent Maurice have none. Dory is in against Barend, Dory finds his way to the corner to tag Art Thomas, and I notice that this is in the Chicago Colisuem again. This is the same location as the last taped event was, so this was probably taped on the same night. Barend has Thomas on the mat with his legs crossed over Thomas's neck. A slam, two count, and a massive kickout at 2. Lockup, Dory Dixon tagged in. Barend kicks him twice to send him down, throws him in the corner, Barend is whipped into the ropes, Dory hops over him several times, and gets a crossbody block to bring Barend down. The pin doesn't succeed, Barend gets up and gives Dory a vicious slam and it's a pin. That's one for Thomas and Dixon, one for Maurice and Barend. This is a unsettlingly boring trend of 2 out of 3 fall matches. Every match during this time period, the 2 out of 3 matches always went to the third fall. Mark my words.
We come back to Dory Dixon blasting Maurice, trying to get a early final fall. Art Thomas has jumped in and they're all four fighting, and the ref throws all four out for fighting? They only fought for a moment! It's a disqualification?!?! What a lame match! That's just evil. All the matches are 2 out of 3 falls and most end in draws or disqualifications. It was a bad time in the world of professional wrestling.
The "Nature Boy" Buddy Rogers vs. Killer Kowalski for the World's Heavyweight title. Rogers appears to hold the belt. 2 out of 3 falls (of course!) They reference to Roger's victory of this belt from Pat O'Conner, a match which was reviewed in a older Olde Timey Tape Review. Wow! We're seeing some semblence of a history forming with these repeat names and events! I was hoping to see some sense of consistency. Anyways, the match introductions are over and it's time to start. Kowalski turns his back on Rogers but that's a bad idea as Rogers bumrushes Kowalski from behind. Kowalski doesn't like that and he comes stampeding after Rogers and beats him thoroughly. He has Rogers on the mat and is working hard on his left leg, but Rogers manages his way into the ropes for the rope break. Commercial.
We return to Kowalski beating heavily on Rogers. Rogers is begging off Kowalski, naturally. Kowalski put Roger's leg up on the rope and jumped up to smash the leg. He's working heavily on that leg. Rogers makes a brief comeback, and with a reverse headlock works Kowalski low to the mat. No holds barred for this match? That's what the announcer said. Kowalski grabbed Rogers by the leg and took him over. He is now viciously leaping and twisting and smashing Roger's leg. He presses down on the leg to keep Roger's shoulders to the mat and it's the first fall. Rogers is rolling around on the mat, hurt from this concentration on the leg. We begin fall two, Rogers is begging off Kowalski, then he rushes up to meet and take down Kowalski, gets a few forms of chokeholds on Kowalski, which the ref is questioning. Rogers is clearly trying to choke out Kowalski and applies a hammerlock on the mat. Kowalski gets up and with a well placed elbow knocks down Rogers. Kowalski just beats on Rogers, he's really mauling him, and gets him back down and is working on that left leg again, getting in the ropes and the ref orders the hold broken. Rogers is holding down Kowalski with a reverse headlock which looks like it's choking. Kowalski gets up and gives Rogers a few big blows to the back to the head, and just takes Rogers to the mat and beats him (with a few very unconvincing blows). Rogers, no surprise, gets a quick pin and gets the second fall DESPITE ALL LOGIC SAYING HE WAS LOSING. This proves my 2 out of 3 fall "always goes to the third fall" theory. Commercial break.
Rogers and Kowalski lock up, Rogers runs up and puts a shoulder to Kowalski's gut. Rogers goes off the ropes but Kowalski goes for a blow, Rogers backs away just in time just for a little strut. Kowalski doesn't take kindly to that as he brutalizes Rogers in the center of the ring to the corner where he puts him up on the corner turnbuckle and just pounds him. Rogers falls down to the bottom of the turnbuckle post where Kowalski just delivers all forms of blows to the head and Roger's left leg. Rogers gets up, Kowalski approaches but Rogers moves, gives Kowalski a body slam, Kowalski gives Rogers two in return. Kowalski comes up to the top turnbuckle for a big falling knee on a downed Rogers, but misses, ouch! Rogers uses this opportunity to get Kowalski down and out for good. Rogers retains his belt.
"If they ever made another guy better than me, he just hasn't been made yet. The lord threw the mold away when they made me, and there will never be another one to duplicate me." boasts Rogers in a post-match interview. He issues a challenge to meet any newcomer head-on, which contradicts his often cowardly in-ring stylings. Commercial break.
A one fall match, Black Bart vs. Golden Moose Cholak. Cholak is a repeat name in my viewing too. Cholak still had his headgear, and is a big guy, but Bart isn't small himself. Bart is taking over Cholak and chokes him in the ropes. They lock up, Cholak takes Bart by the hair and takes him down, Bart gets up and is tossed over on his back. Cholak gets Bart in a brief reverse headlock, Bart whips Cholak into the turnbuckle twice and the Moose takes over Bart and sits above him, choking him. Cholak kicks him and three minutes are left in the match. Bart has Cholak's ankle while the Moose is standing on one leg, and the Moose falls. Two minutes are called for the time limit as Black Bart works on that ankle from a standing position. A few kicks to the leg, the ref breaks the hold due to a rope break. Moose in the corner getting beaten, Black Bart picks up that leg by the ankle and twists, leaving Moose hopping and falling. Cholak is trying to get away from this hold, and does. The Golden Moose Cholak is lumbering around the ring, Black Bart and Cholak just throw a bunch of punches until time is called. They're still fighting well after the bell. It's a draw, that's the final word.
Brief post match interview with the Moose Cholak. He brags about being unbeaten and needing to take on Buddy Rogers for the world title. And that's it for this Olde Timey tape review, a decent show, reflected on a lot of themes I keep seeing from this early 60's period. Until next week!
For more classic wrestling, tune in to ESPN Classics, Saturday mornings on 7:00AM EST.
I'll try to get Xavier to post the feedback from this commentary along with his normal mailbag post. I'm seeking some stories from you olde timers, so if you have a rather outdated wrestling memory, feel free to get in contact with me! Until next week...
- Phoebus Apollo