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MARCH 2019 WRESTLING TALK.

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8 hours ago, Smelly McUgly said:

That is fair, but even when they were still active, as soon as Vince signed Animal and Hawk, the Demos were treated like a second-class team in comparison. The way the Demos have been positioned wasn't just because of how Eadie or Darsow acted after they left the company. 

 Sure, but that's not the point. The WWE's history is revisionist. They could just  ignore the way Demolition's run ended and just focus on the 698 days combined that they held championships. They could bill them as the most dominant tag team of the 80s WWF and it would be believable. Just look at how much revisionism they've done to Beth Phoenix's career. She was never nearly as big of a deal as they like to make her out to be now.

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11 minutes ago, Execproducer said:

I mean Hogan spent two years in the AWA. Even without the belt he was the top star. He could have stayed a few more years and sold out venues and probably landed a few more movie roles. But that was all it was ever going to be. 

But that also ties to the same point as well. 

Too much of the "What if AWA kept Hulk Hogan in 1983?" thing is a question mark- but considering everything involved between money (apparently Verne wanted a cut of Hogan's Japan dates), professional success (Verne would NEVER give Hogan the title), and personally (Verne strongly told Hogan "you want the title, you have to marry my daughter") - the more it seems like "If Hogan doesn't jump to the WWF in 1983, he jumps to the WWF in 1984 or 1985 instead." 

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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, SorceressKnight said:

 the more it seems like "If Hogan doesn't jump to the WWF in 1983, he jumps to the WWF in 1984 or 1985 instead." 

I think that is a more interesting question. Does the WWF have the same success if it takes two more years to get Hogan? Do they try with someone else instead, fail, and lose their window?  I just don't think there is any scenario where the AWA has anything like the WWF's success, even if Verne is all in on Hogan.

I would have loved for that to have happened, btw. 80-84 I was a huge AWA fan. Hogan was great in that role and I wasn't much of a fan of his WWF stuff. Partly because I ended up favoring Bock, but mostly because I thought his AWA stuff was just right and his WWF run was too much for me.

Edited by Execproducer

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Posted (edited)
7 minutes ago, Execproducer said:

I think that is a more interesting question. Does the WWF have the same success if it takes two more years to get Hogan? Do they try with someone else instead, fail, and lose their window?  I just don't think there is any scenario where the AWA has anything like the WWF's success, even if Verne is all in on Hogan.

Honestly, the bigger thing for 1984 was probably Cyndi Lauper's involvement more than anything. Once they got Lauper, they had mainstream recognition.

For the WWF's window, ultimately the bigger question is not "Do they lose the same success if it takes two years to get Hogan?", but the real one: "Was there anyone else in pro wrestling, in 1984-85, who would fit alongside Mr.T?" If Hogan didn't come two years before, WWE probably goes on a fullcourt press for someone like Dusty/Lawler/Flair/Kerry, or perhaps builds around Piper, Junkyard Dog, or Slaughter...but it's hardpressed to assume most of those people would be able to click as well as Hogan did alongside Mr.T (and in the process help Wrestlemania succeed.) 

Edited by SorceressKnight
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Posted (edited)

Well, without Hogan and the Rocky III connection,  I doubt Mr. T is even on their radar. Agreed about Lauper. She should really be in their HOF.  Maybe they should just induct MTV.

Edited by Execproducer

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You also had the synergy of Hogan & Mr T both being in Rocky 3.

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Other thing with Slaughter leaving was that his deal with Hasbro was seen by Vince as a conflict of interest with his figurine deal with LJN. 

For Vince to bide his time and wait two years also depends on whether the NY area business was strong enough for him to continue making payments to Monsoon, Skaaland and Zacko without the company defaulting back to them.

I doubt had that occurred, they would have taken those risks either.

That's not to say I'd like to see Kim Wilde or Belinda Carlisle instead of Cyndi Lauper. Actually Deb Harry would have been the best choice. 

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Other thing with Slaughter leaving was that his deal with Hasbro was seen by Vince as a conflict of interest with his figurine deal with LJN. 

For Vince to bide his time and wait two years also depends on whether the NY area business was strong enough for him to continue making payments to Monsoon, Skaaland and Zacko without the company defaulting back to them.

I doubt had that occurred, they would have taken those risks either.

That's not to say I'd like to see Kim Wilde or Belinda Carlisle instead of Cyndi Lauper. Actually Deb Harry would have been the best choice. 

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Lauper and T got the eyes on the product, but it was Hogan that kept them coming back. 

Much like Tyson and Austin in 98. You have to have someone that can be that guy before you can have that kind of success. And history has proven that there aren't all that many of those guys to go around.

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While on the topic, have any of you ever had any friends or acquaintances who weren't fans watch a few shows or develop an interest in wrestling because of some celebrity/athlete's involvement?

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17 hours ago, thee Reverend Axl Future said:

Looks to be a Rockin' Randy card. Not the original Doink or Golga, I assume. A quick Googling shows no results, but random people say they saw Booger v. Spinks "box". I reasch out to a source, so if I hear anything I will let you know. I did stumble across the archives of the Upper Midwest Wrestling Newsletter, so that was trippy. Davis was a good guy. http://drdarindavis.com/oldsite/umwn/.

I’m pretty sure All World Wrestling was promoted by a guy named Don McNeil or something similar. 

If y’all want to read some of my cringe-worthy reviews from some pretty substandard Indy wrestling shows and tv from Wisconsin, the good Reverend included the link above. 

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2 hours ago, mattdangerously said:

 Sure, but that's not the point. The WWE's history is revisionist. They could just  ignore the way Demolition's run ended and just focus on the 698 days combined that they held championships. They could bill them as the most dominant tag team of the 80s WWF and it would be believable. Just look at how much revisionism they've done to Beth Phoenix's career. She was never nearly as big of a deal as they like to make her out to be now.

This is fair, and probably I shouldn't have even brought WWE's promotion machine into this discussion for the reasons that you note (and they're revising Beth Phoenix's career in some significant way? That sounds, um, amazing). 

But separately from that, I don't think the Demos really get that kind of "iconic team" respect even among the people who critique tag teams while (mostly) dismissing WWE's influence. This site is one of maybe two places where I saw a spirited argument about the Demos being good, and typically (and anecdotally), most other places that I've spent time reading at don't consider them at that level. 

Or maybe the WWE machine is just that insidious, which is a possibility. 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, SorceressKnight said:

Honestly, the bigger thing for 1984 was probably Cyndi Lauper's involvement more than anything. Once they got Lauper, they had mainstream recognition.

I was wondering when someone was going to make this point.

23 minutes ago, Smelly McUgly said:

... (and they're revising Beth Phoenix's career in some significant way? That sounds, um, amazing)...

This site is one of maybe two places where I saw a spirited argument about the Demos being good, and typically (and anecdotally), most other places that I've spent time reading at don't consider them at that level. 

They made Beth the youngest person ever inducted in the Hall of Fame, and they bring her out now every time there's some major milestone with the women's division. I mean, I like her, and she's been good on commentary, but it all seems a little much for someone who was only around for 5 years during the women's least impressive era.

And other websites are just plain wrong about Demolition.

Edited by mattdangerously
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12 hours ago, Smelly McUgly said:

This is more than fair, and I do honestly see your point. 

[...] 

(BUT I'm not saying that my view is the right one, and I absolutely understand the arguments that I've read for the Demos as a legitimate great or iconic tag team, so I respect your viewpoint here!)

If I came across as disrespecting / begrudging your viewpoint, my attempt at a joke failed miserably. My initial "outrage" was more off an attempt to poke a little fun at how this thread started out while trying to help steering discussion into another direction. 

I'd still argue that the Demo character was more career defining for Darsow and hence should rank highest if one reviews his career. But it is of course a matter of what you prioritize, since an argument could be made that his portrayal of the Repo Man made so much out of so little. As you said, opinions and preferences, of course. 

 

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I don't think Slaughter could have been Hogan but he was a tremendous babyface.  A great worker too but man he'd have the crowds electric,  tons of physical charisma.  I think he could have been bigger that he ended up being... which is still pretty big but I feel like he is a guy that had potential to be a massive star. 

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Slaughter was fucking tremendous in his prime. Some of the bumps he'd take...

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Given his previous success in the WWWF, could Vince have brought Dusty back to give the Hogan push? 

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I don't think Dusty captivates anyone that isn't already a pro wrestling fan like Hogan did.  He only makes sense in that world. I honestly think Flair would be the better choice. If he had a company that was actually behind him, he might have been nearly as big as Hogan. Different for sure, but maybe almost as big.

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I think Vince wanted Dusty to jump during 1983 - they even gave him postmatch mic time at MSG in May of that year: 

 

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The one consideration I would make would be that you do always hear of Vince's plan to put somebody in the Hogan spot if he didn't have Hogan. (I think I always heard it was Kerry Von Erich, which would have been something). My point is, he had the framework and a plan and was willing to swing for the fence, making me believe he would have always ended up being successful. 

And wasn't the Lauper connection more to do with Captain Lou?

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Captain Lou brought her in, Piper interrupted, Hogan defended, and they were off and running. Then they shunted Cyndi over to Wendi and tossed in T.

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Posted (edited)
17 hours ago, Niners Fan in CT said:

I don't think Slaughter could have been Hogan but he was a tremendous babyface.  A great worker too but man he'd have the crowds electric,  tons of physical charisma.  I think he could have been bigger that he ended up being... which is still pretty big but I feel like he is a guy that had potential to be a massive star. 

I can’t see Slaughter pulling off his babyface shtick against non-foreign heel opponents, Sarge vs. Big John Stuff or Mr. Wonderful is never going to get heat the feud with Iron Sheik had. Fans would have tired of Sarge against evil foreign heel pretty quickly, with Hogan you can rotate in every type of heel. 

Also no matter what Verne did to keep Hogan happy the Hulkster was going to New York whenever Vince came calling, even without the expansion the WWF was the biggest money territory and no one really passed when they called. 

Edited by happjack
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8 hours ago, ReiseReise said:

If I came across as disrespecting / begrudging your viewpoint, my attempt at a joke failed miserably. My initial "outrage" was more off an attempt to poke a little fun at how this thread started out while trying to help steering discussion into another direction. 

I'd still argue that the Demo character was more career defining for Darsow and hence should rank highest if one reviews his career. But it is of course a matter of what you prioritize, since an argument could be made that his portrayal of the Repo Man made so much out of so little. As you said, opinions and preferences, of course. 

 

Heck no, man, I took no meaning of disrespect. It's all good. 🙂

I just know how beloved the Demos are here, so my tone is more conciliatory. Actually, it was this site that made me appreciate their work and what they were doing in the ring in terms of giving enough to their opponents at just the right time. 

But Repo Man did look around jerkily a lot and it made me laugh, so Demo Smash = #2. 

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29 minutes ago, happjack said:

I can’t see Slaughter pulling off his babyface shtick against non-foreign heel opponents, Sarge vs. Big John Stuff or Mr. Wonderful is never going to get heat the feud with Iron Sheik had. Fans would have tired of Sarge against evil foreign heel pretty quickly, with Hogan you can rotate in every type of heel. 

Also no matter what Verne did to keep Hogan happy the Hulkster was going to New York whenever Vince came calling, even without the expansion the WWF was the biggest money territory and no really passed when they called. 

Could they get around that by having a foreign heel manager or a foreign-sympathizer heel manager sending his stable/family against Sarge?

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We saw John Cena as "The Marine"  for several years and he wasn't always fighting evil foreigners, he was just a guy that was very patriotic and big on the military.  I think Slaughter could have transitioned into a role like that.  

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