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The Promos of the Ultimate Warrior

By MC_U.S.TitleBelt
Dec 4, 2004, 13:14


...






MC_U.S.TitleBelt in the hizzzoouuse!!! JG and Binnal
liked my review of “Piledriver” enough to make me
believe that another review would be worth a try.
Much like the “Piledriver” review, this time around I
will be analyzing a pair of videos that involve
another aspect of the business that was instrumental
in my becoming a fan. Last time was theme music, this
time it is the art of the promo. When trying to think
of who gave the best promos when I was in my formative
years, so many superstars came to mind. Macho Man
Randy Savage, Hulk Hogan, Rowdy Roddy Piper, even Jake
The Snake Roberts all had an “it” quality to their mic
skills. But, there was one man who stood out among
them all. A man who had such a way with words that
even if you didn’t understand what the hell he was
saying, you couldn’t help but be intrigued. He also
happens to be very high on Vince’s shit list right now
as indicated by the rather slanted view of wrestling
history as depicted in one of the most popular WWE
videos in current release. That man, as anybody who
read the title of my review knows, is none other than
Jim Hellwig, The Ultimate Warrior.

The Warrior was great in the pre-Internet era. Not
necessarily from the aspect of in-ring performance as
he was only a five spot wonder, but when you consider
his turbo charged, power packed, maniacal rant filled
run as one of Vince’s top guys, you can’t help but
give him tons of style points. That being said, I
also want to make clear that much like my previous
review, any thing I say that might seem like a potshot
is entirely tongue in cheek. I am a fan of who Jim
Hellwig was in his heyday. I may not agree with his
political stances or his assertions that Bobby
Heenan’s throat cancer is karmic retribution for
saying bad things about him over the years, but from
1988 to 1991, the Jim Hellwig we all saw on USA, NBC,
and PPV was undoubtedly one of the coolest dudes that
we could hope to get a glimpse of. With 1990, of
course, being his biggest year, which is actually
somewhat ironic.

At Halloween Havoc ‘89, Jim Ross made this comment
during the Thunderdome cage match.

“This youngster from Venice Beach, California… Started
out as a member of a team called The Blade Runners… I
think his partner… has not progressed like this kid
has.”

You’re probably wondering what I’m driving at. Okay,
we all know that the “youngster from Venice Beach”
that JR was referring to was Steve Borden a.k.a. Sting
and that “his partner” was of course, Jim Hellwig.
JR’s comment about Warrior not progressing like Sting
has, in hindsight, is actually somewhat inaccurate.
Both started at the same time, both attained mid-card
titles very early in their time in their respective
nationally televised promotions. Then, came the year
1990, which could very easily be referred to as “The
Year of The Blade Runners.” Why, you ask? The reason
being that both former Blade Runners were given their
first runs as World Champion in 1990. What is also
ironic is that both men ended up losing any momentum
they had as champions due to poor booking decisions.
While Warrior did have “Reliable” Rick Rude as his
summer time foil for the second year in a row, poor
Sting had Stabbin’ Sid Vicious to make trouble for
him. However, neither feud proved to be capable of
elevating Hellwig and Borden to that next level.
While Sting did get more chances to be champ, Hellwig
faded from the limelight. In that respect, JR’s view
of the former Blade Runners’ progress was correct.
But, 1990, man, what a year for those guys!

Here endeth this portion of the history lesson…

Now, the review.


Coliseum Video’s presentation of “Ultimate Warrior”
mid-1989.


We begin with an anti-smoking commercial that Vince
used to put on all Coliseum Video releases before the
truly irritating “thetruth.com” commercials that
actually made me, a non-smoker, to want to light up.
This one features the Warrior. He actually appears to
be stuffing two fistfuls of cigs into his mouth, as if
he was feasting upon them and gives us this pearl of
wisdom (as with all internet conversations, capital
letters indicate shouting):

“THE ULTIMATE WARRIOR HAS GOT A LOT OF BAD HABITS, BUT
ONLY ONES THAT HELP ME SURVIVE! DON’T DEPRIVE
YOURSELF OF THE FULL POWER! BE A SURVIVOR, don’t
smoke!” (so steroids help you survive, eh Jim?)

We are next treated to a trailer for “No Holds
Barred”. A lot of stuff gets broken in this movie,
save of course for box office records.

Now, we are reminded that Warrior was the Slim Jim
spokesperson before Macho Man and just why Mach was
better at it considering that the commercial shown was
the only one Hellwig ever did as opposed to the
countless situations that we found Randy Savage in
plugging spicy beef sticks.

Available August 9th, 1989 from Coliseum Video:

Best of The WWF, Volume 20

Demolition

WWF Fan Favorites

Personally, I wish Sean Mooney or Mean Gene was
showing us some clips like they usually do for future
video releases. This gives me the indication that
they want to keep these videos out of the public eye
by not showing us anything.


The program starts with Warrior’s music and Hellwig
standing in front of his personal promo back drop.
For simplicity’s sake, I will refer to this as
“Warrior Central” when we cut back to this over the
course of the show. Personally, I think Vince should
go back to the format of the pre-recorded comments
shot in front of each superstar’s personal promo back
drop. I personally found them to be excellent plot
devices for the furthering of feuds through trash
talking. Ah, memories. Anyway, UW’s got something to
say:

“Strap yourselves in, Warriors. Shy away from nothing
and fear nothing as you hang on tight to the body
parts of the Ultimate Warrior (I can’t decide if that
“body parts” comment is Michael Jackson weird or
Hannibal Lecter weird) as we witness a first class
production from Coliseum Video of the upbringing and
the destiny of the Ultimate Warrior”

We proceed with a montage accompanying the theme song.
There’s a whole lot of running, clotheslining, chest
beating, rope shaking, arm pumping, and lamaze
breathing that Jim learned from Terry Bollea. Back to
Warrior Central with more from UW.

“Let us begin with the challenge from the mighty
Hercules, the legend that he once was (I liked
Hercules when he teamed with Paul Roma, but even
though his original schtick was literally believing
himself to be the mythical Hercules, I wouldn‘t say he
was a legend), as we snapped the almighty chain…right
in half. Then let us travel into the rematch against
the Honky Tonk Man, after we had already captured the
Intercontinental belt, and there was nothing that he
could feel or do against the power of the Warriors.
Then let us go to King Haku, and you do remember that
the Warriors made him bow to the power. Then let us
go to the WWF Heavyweight Champion (Hogan? They
locked horns before 1990? More details later) when I
took him for what he was, took him for all he was, and
made him feel the pain and the torture that we had to
deliver. Then, let us go to the Super Pose Down. How
can we forget that when the Warrior had his back
turned, Ravishing Rick Rude laid it on him thick and
thin. But, you, Ravishing Rick Rude realize that it
isn’t finished, it has only just beguuuunnnnnnn!!!”

More montage, which includes a lot of crowd shots.
One that really sticks out in my mind is the shot of
the kid in a Warrior t-shirt and a kid in a Bret Hart
tank top who both seem to think that Warrior is #1.
Both Warrior and Hitman have their respective opinions
on that topic. Hart mentioned it in every promo and
Hellwig told us in his response to “Self Destruction”
that he was on a level that Bret and HBK could never
even hope to achieve. History will dictate who is
actually right in that argument considering which one
was actually willing to play ball with McMahon no
matter the personal cost to himself, so that his
character would hopefully be remembered as the
champion he was and not a laughing stock. We’ll find
out once Hart’s DVD set is released.
Match #1: Warrior vs. Hercules Hernandez February
1988.


The full entrance is not shown, but when the scene
opens, it appears that UW was not running to the ring
at full throttle just yet. I want to say that didn’t
happen until WM4 when the Grudge Match that was the
result of this encounter took place. Ultimate shakes
the ropes and Vince, on commentary, calls him an
animal. Backstage, Bobby Heenan is psyching up Herc
as only The Brain can. Vince calls both men
tremendous athletes. To a certain extent, I agree
with him. It does take being in fairly good physical
condition to do what these individuals do as I’ve
learned after observing and conversing with the guys
and gals on the Minnesota indy scene. Even the
biggest muscle bound chump has taken steps to make
himself able to do the stunt work involved, so in that
way, all of them are tremendous athletes.

Both men are now in the ring and try to out pose each
other. Hercules decided that rather than start the
match, he wants to play tug o’ war with Jim. For all
intents and purposes, this is just pre-match hijinx
since the bell has yet to ring. They pull for all
they’re worth in opposite directions. We get a lot of
slobber and lamaze out of Hellwig to show just how
hard he’s trying. He and Herc end up picking up too
much slack on their respective ends of the chain and
end up close enough for Hernandez to score a boot to
UW’s gut. Just as his opponent backs off momentarily,
Hellwig yanks his chain and it breaks, causing Paul
Roma’s favorite tag partner to land flat on his rump
roast in the corner and Warrior to go on a tirade.

The guy whose only single’s PPV win would come against
King Haku, charges the Dean of Warrior University with
his half of the chain and knocks him down. The bell
finally rings though it seems odd to me to start the
match with a foreign object still in the ring. Then,
again, Hot Rod’s kilt and leather strap always saw
plenty of post-opening bell action, so maybe it’s just
being allowed until the ref takes control. Oddly
enough, however, the time keeper decides to just keep
banging away on the bell as if the match were over.
Wait a sec…it is over. They call a wasteful no
contest which undoubtedly upsets fans who paid hoping
to see those to beat the snot out of each other. No
dice. The arch-nemesis of Billy Jack Haynes uses
what’s left of his favorite prop to choke out the
Master of the Clothesline. Every ref in Vince’s
employ attempt to separate them. When that logic
fails, a group of on hand, prelim jobbers are some how
able to restrain the Mighty Hercules. As the
manifestation of the later years of the mythic
Greco-Roman hero celebrates his villainous deeds, we
get the replay. Warrior’s music sounds during the
replay for reasons unknown since they won’t kill the
replay footage. By the time they get back to real
time, Warrior Jim is chasing Ray Hernandez down the
aisle and when he catches him, uses the “turnabout is
fair play” mindset and starts choking Herc with the
chain. They disappear through the curtain, and we cut
back to Warrior Central.

“There I was, in Parts Unknown (considering that
anybody who wore face paint other than The Road
Warriors were billed as hailing from Parts Unknown, I
wonder why that was considered a point of ridicule in
“Self-Destruction”?), becoming mentally and physically
prepared for the next combat that was gonna lead to
the ultimate war in the WWF, when the warriors spoke
to me. They said ’Get to the Summer Slam, Get to
Madison Square Garden! Somethin’s gonna happen to
change the destiny of the Ultimate Warrior!’ And
there you were, Honky Tonk Man, sly and sleazy lkie
you are making the challenge to anybody in the WWF,
that noboy could rise to the challenge. THE ULTIMATE
WARRIOR CAME AND HE TOOK IT AAAAAAALL!!!!!”

Match #2 Ultimate Warrior vs. Honky Tonk Man pt.1
Summer Slam 88


I guess they threw this in there just in case we
missed it or perhaps due to the fact that it was his
biggest win in such a short space of time. Whatever
the case may in fact be, we all know how it went down.
HTM makes the arrogant challenge to anyone in the
locker room since somehow getting gashed in the
forehead by the spurs of Outlaw Ron Bass was enough to
shelve Brutus The Barber Beefcake until the evening
after SummerSlam. For some historical inaccuracies
that Vince’s Wrestling Co. (I’ll say VWC for short
since I‘m technically not allowed to say WWF except
when quoting, and I have nothing but contempt for the
use of WWE.) is known for, we go to Superstar Billy
Graham. According to Hogan’s idol, Jerry Lawler’s
cousin has held the IC title for almost 2 years and
faced top people along the way. Let’s tackle the
first part of that statement shall we? For info on
title reigns and match results, I’ve found that the
best possible resource is the Apter Mag’s Annual
Wrestling Almanac (now that they’ve finally corrected
the result of the opening match of Starrcade ‘87 that
went unchecked for the first five publications of the
almanac). According to the almanac, Honky stole the
belt from Ricky Steamboat on June 2nd, 1987 and held
it til the night in question, August 29th, 1988. That
comes to 1 year, 2 months and 27 days (on a side note
this only tops Macho Man Randy Savage‘s reign as IC
champ by 1 month, 21 days. Why, oh why couldn’t have
Ed Leslie won by pinfall or submission at WM4 so a
more talented person could go down in history as the
longest reigning IC Champ?). Needless to say, that
doesn’t quite touch the two year mark now does it? As
for top people faced along the way: Steamboat, Mach,
Jake Roberts, Beefcake, Hacksaw Jim Duggan, and
ultimately (pun intended), the Warrior. Skill wise,
Savage and Steamboat were the only top men in that
illustrious company. When you consider that heels are
generally only transitional champs, Honky joins the
ranks of Yokozuna and The Game as transitional champs
who wore out their welcome from the standpoint of
transitioning.

Anyway, Warrior’s music hits and sparks a pop that
hasn’t been heard in MSG for VWC since before the turn
of the 21st Century. Gorilla claims to not recognize
the music, but Graham knows who’s coming. UW hit the
ring and punches Honky several times, loses control of
the movement of his arms for a few seconds while
dancing around, clothesline, more uncontrolled arm
movement, body slam, flying tackle, and a big splash
(which during the replay, is called a “body slam” by
Superstar Graham. Hey, I rocked a rhyme. I ain’t
MC_U.S.TitleBelt for nothing), 1-2-3, the end.
Cheapest title change until Hogan beats Rock’s cousin
for the World title at WM9.

Flash forward several months for to January ‘89 and
Saturday Night’s Main Event. Jimmy Hart says
something about Honky being the people’s champ and how
he’s gonna make history by being the only man in WWF
history to reclaim the IC belt after losing it.
Thinking Jimmy is just slightly confused, I let this
slide. Honky heads to the ring and “Governor Bod”
Ventura tries to convince us that watching tapes of
Warrior’s matches is going to be instrumental in Honky
getting back his title. Meanwhile, Mean Gene is back
stage trying to put doubts in Hellwig’s head, but is
rebuked by the Ultimate One with this burning missive,
snarling and pumping his arms all the while:

“THE ULTIMATE WARRIOR DENIES HIMSELF NO VICTORY!!!
VICTORY WAS MINE ONCE AND IT WILL BE AGAIN! My
opponent ONLY KNOWS DEFEAT and I will not DENY
HIIIIIIM!!!!”

UW runs out to the ring and once on the apron, prances
like a pony around the corner post, rope shake, pose,
you know the routine. Vince calls Jim one of a kind.
Then, he and Governor Bod go off on a tangent about
how if Honky gets the belt back, he will be the first
superstar ever to do so in the history of the IC
title. So Jimmy Hart wasn’t just confused when he
said that during his promo. McMahon fed him that line
backstage. Of course if any of them bothered to read
up on title history they would have seen that no less
than 3 ex-champs regained the IC title from the man
they lost it to. Pedro Morales lost it to Don Muraco,
who lost it back to Morales, who in turn lost it back
to Muraco, who eventually dropped it to Tito Santana,
who would lose it to Greg Valentine, who ended up
losing it back to Santana. Jimmy Hart technically has
no excuse for his ignorance in this matter as he was
managing Valentine at the time of his IC title reign
before the inexplicable transfer of managerial duties
of the Hammer to Luscious Johnny Valiant. My guess is
the fact that the 3 multi-time champs were 2 Latino
gents and 1 Polynesian fellow that Vince chose to over
look their achievements.

This match is everything we’ve come to expect from the
Warrior when put in against someone who can’t carry
him because they can’t even carry themselves. Much
striking and power maneuvers to wow the fans and make
them forget his lack of technical prowess. At one
point, UW whips Honky to the corner, and as he charges
in for the follow-up, he seems to stall for a moment
as though he couldn’t remember what spot he was
supposed to do and at the last moment, decides to go
for a shoulder thrust to the solar lexes. He repeats
the process only this time trying to emulate his
former tag partner, Sting, by attempting a Stinger
splash but misses. Honky now has the megaphone and a
beat down ensues as Hart distracts the ref. More of
the usual cheating tactics occur. Warrior starts to
shake the ropes, no sells and dominates until he goes
for his big splash and Honky puts his knees up.

Next comes the spot of the match, and if I saw the
rest of that episode of SNME, it was probably the spot
of the night. Warrior appears weakened, so Honky goes
for a clothesline and connects. However, it is Honky
who goes down from the clothesline, not Hellwig, even
though there was NO VISIBLE COUNTER MANEUVER!!! The
Ultimate One just stood there and Honky toppled over
backwards. Absolutely hilarious! Honky tries again
to see if maybe Jim just forgot to duck to set up the
finishing chain of spots. This appears to be the case
as UW actually ducks the clothesline this time, and
bounces off the ropes to deliver a flying shoulder
tackle for the win. During the post-match
celebration, Ultimate declares when the camera is
shoved in his face:

“THE POWER OF THE WARRIOR LIVES IN EVERYBODY!!!”

Meanwhile, back at Warrior Central, The man from Parts
Unknown has another tale to tell.

“Since the day arriving in the WWF, there hasn’t been
any question that I’ve asked the people if they felt
that they had what it took to challenge the power of
the Ultimate Warrior, to send me back to Parts Unknown
empty handed. Step in to the ring and bring
frustration anger…Show what you have! Show me the
madness! Greg The Hammer Valentine didn’t have what
it took. The Warriors buried the hatchet right into
him, heavy and thick (doesn’t burying the hatchet
usually mean you stopped fighting with someone?). And
you, King Haku, you bowed low and mighty to the
Warrior LIKE ALL THE OTHERS WIIIIILLL!!!!!!!”


Match #3 UW vs. Greg The Hammer Valentine

I guess Tony Schiavone either wasn’t told to say it or
Valentine isn’t important enough to hammer home (pun
intended) the idea that he’ll be the first guy in
history to reclaim the IC title after having lost it.
Maybe, it’s because Valentine was too good a worker to
allow that claim to be made on the air. Lord Alfred
Hayes, who is also on commentary, gives the Warrior
praise through out this match. It was one of the
brilliant things about the dearly departed Gorilla
Monsoon and Lord Alfred Hayes. Their commentary could
play up even the most boring competitor and make him
sound like he had the courage of a lion, the strength
of a bear, the speed of a puma (starting to sound like
that 80’s cartoon, Marshal Bravestarr), and that he
was the greatest thing since Sliced Bread #2.

Jimmy Hart distracts the everybody so MC Hammer can
use his infamous leg brace “The Heartbreaker” to knock
the Warrior sensible, since he’s already silly. UW is
unconvincing in his effort to appear to be sucking
wind. Lord Alfred says “The Warrior is made of steel”
(that might explain a lot. Schwarzenegger has the
same problem making us believe his performances due to
the fact that he is just “living tissue over a metal
endoskeleton”). Valentine goes off the top rope with
an axe handle blow, but Capt. No-Sell just pumps his
arms and does his lamaze. This prompts The Mouth of
The South to attempt to interference with Greg’s
discarded “Heartbreaker”. Warrior shows what a big
man he is by hoisting up the 165 lb. Colonel and
throws him at Valentine. Monsoon’s kid, referee Joey
Marella, tries to restore order by paying sole
attention to Jimmy Hart as the role model of children
everywhere waffles Seattle’s favorite son upside the
head with the leg brace. Schiavone says “Jimmy Hart
can only fault himself!” though he doesn’t enunciate
“fault” and it ends up sounding dirty. Professor Tony
goes on to say, “It appears that they were bent on
destroying this man with the shin guard!” What, does
the thing weigh 500 lbs and have retractable, poison
tipped spikes hidden on it? I’ve been hit in the face
with harder things than that shin guards and have
lived to tell the tale. Who is Schiavone trying to
kid? Then again, Governor Bod pointed out the
stupidity of the Voice of WCW at Superbrawl 3 when he
said, “You don’t know the difference between a beal
and a hiptoss, Schiavone!”

Match #4: Hellwig vs. King Haku

This match had to be a pre-PPV match for Royal Rumble
’89. I say this for 2 reasons.

1) In spite of the atrocious sound quality coming
from the announce booth, you can just make out
Superstar Billy Graham mentioning that Warrior still
has to worry about the Super Pose Down later tonight.

2) During crowd shots, we see a kid in a dark blue
jean jacket with ugly forest green Warrior-style face
paint. When we see the Super Pose Down later in the
tape, we see this same kid. It has to be the same kid
because you can’t flawlessly repeat the same amateur
make-up job twice. I should know. I had the
Warrior/LOD Halloween face paint kit when I was a kid
and could never duplicate my previous attempts.

An announcer whose voice I don’t recognize says
Warrior will be Haku’s biggest challenge to date (so
Macho Man, Harley Race, Big John Studd and Andre The
Giant are all out classed by the Warrior. That’s
debatable). Graham retorts that Haku is the Warrior’s
biggest challenge to date (when did King of the Ring
become a bigger prize than the IC belt? It isn’t.
That being said, didn’t Warrior beat that guy? But,
considering the chump champ Hellwig beat for said
belt, perhaps Graham’s statement holds water). The
most impressive thing that UW does in this match is
leapfrogging over Haku while he was facing away from
him with the agility of a luchador. Otherwise it’s
the same old no sell fest and the repetitive series of
Warrior spots. But, like the Prince song says,
“There’s Joy in Repetition”. Hellwig goes for some
mounted punching in the corner. Haku kills that noise
with a reverse atomic drop that the unknown announcer
calls “a reverse piledriver.” That guy should have
been fired. Sure even the great Gorilla Monsoon for
years called a side Russian leg sweep a neck breaker
and Mike Tenay, during the surge of lucha libre in
WCW, called any move where the legs wrapped around the
head and had some sort of flipping was involved a
hurricanrana. At least in those cases, where you grab
a guy about the head and neck in a Russian Leg Sweep
could break the neck if done improperly, and the
unlearned among us can’t tell the difference between a
Frankensteiner and a Hurricanrana, so they can be
excused. But there is no way in hell that a reverse
atomic drop in anyway shape or form resembles a
piledriver. C’mon, man! Coachman could call spots
bett…no scratch that.

Considering that massage therapists constantly work
the area to relax their clients and bring relief, I’ve
often wondered why Haku thought the trapezius hold
would be a good wear down move. If anything, it’s
loosening him up and making him feel better, which in
a match would seem rather counter productive to me.

Warrior is back on offense, doing his bouncing off the
ropes thing, but rather than a clothesline or a flying
shoulder block, he gives Haku a boot the bread-basket,
which is of course a Monsoon-ism for the belly-welly,
which is in turn a Dusty-ism for the abdomen. Unknown
Announcer Guy doesn’t seem to know his basic anatomy
when he makes this observation:

“That big boot right into the throat of King Haku!”

In “A League of Their Own” in the famous “There’s no
crying in baseball” scene, Tom Hanks refers to the
head as being “That lump that’s 3 feet above your
ass!” If that is the case, that would make the throat
the lump that is 1 foot above your abs. This
announcer should have been a referee considering his
being prone to blindness. Anyway, Haku is down and
the Ultimate One ends up landing throat…I mean gut
first on the King’s knees. That seems to be Warrior’s
Kryptonite. Hogan’s is the bear hug, UW’s is the
botched splash. Now, they’re dancing, but Haku’s got
Hellwig gripped to tight around the shoulder area and
he goes down to one knee like he’s proposing. Awww,
how sweet. Oops, my bad, it’s just a precursor to
more no selling that results in Warrior’s half assed
version of the X-Factor.

I think Graham just called the other announcer Rob.
Who would that be? It’s not Robert Marella, a.k.a.
Gorilla Monsoon, the vocal intonation isn’t right.
Warrior just did a suplex which is probably the most
technical move he used in his entire career. Big
Splash, the end, big surprise. The ring announcer who
isn’t Fink or Mike McGuirk goes through puberty as he
declares Hellwig victorious. Superstar Billy Graham
proves he taught Dusty Rhodes how to do commentary
when calling this replay.

“Alright, we got the replay comin up right here.
Hak…uh, the Warrior goin’ in for the suplex and gets
it. Haku tried it, the Warrior reverses the suplex
plain and simple in the center of the ring. Runs over
the Warr…over the Haku for more leverage and more
momentum. Up in the air 7 to 6,5,6 feet down. Hooks
the leg right there. Hooks an arm, hooks a leg, gets
a pin.”

Hellwig is back at Warrior Central for more raving.

“As I passed all the tests from my ancestors and they
put me down in the caves with all the beasts that I
had to torture, they told me there will be a test one
day. The ultimate challenge against the WWF
Heavyweight Champion (this can’t be right, this video
is too old to have that match). They let me know that
the man would stand alone like me. Above all the
rest. That he too would need a straight jacket to
travel the normal realms of the United States of
America. But, you, Randy Savage (why didn’t he just
say it was Savage before. By the time the events of
this video end, Hogan has beaten Mach for the belt at
WM5. Would have saved me some confusion), you felt
the power like all others will…AFTER YOOOOUUUU!!!!!”


Match #5: Macho Man vs. Ultimate Warrior

So the Ultimate Challenge really took place a year
before WM6, only Randy Savage was champ and he didn’t
lose his title. Eat that, Hogan! This is literally
the same concept as the match is billed as title for
title (though considering that both men were booked to
lose their titles a few weeks later at WM5, there was
not going to be a real finish to this one. What a rip
off!) Lord Alfred says Mach has a look of concern,
though I don’t know how you could tell through the
Koko B. Ware sunglasses he was wearing. Schiavone
says to listen to the ovation for the Ultimate
Warrior, but either the audience is dead or the
producer turned off the crowd mic, cuz I can’t hear
anything except theme music and announce team.

Mach gets the first shot in, but Warrior is quickly on
the offensive, only to almost immediately be put in
his place by the World Champ. Lord Alfred does
something that Gorilla did occasionally, but no other
face commentator ever did and that was give the heels
praise when they performed well. Savage goes for a
flying body press, but is caught awkwardly by Warrior
who then deposits him in the corner in a tree of woe
position and deliver some weak-ass kicks to the
throat…I’m sorry, abs. Little Gorilla (referee Joey
Marella), tries to get Hellwig to stop so Mach can get
free, but is escorted to the opposite corner and
placed on the top rope by him. Mach gets free and
seizes the opportunity. Fisticuffs and a patented
Mach high knee to the back later, and Warrior is on
the floor to receive an axe handle blow from the top
rope. The real Slim Jim spokesman throws the guy who
originally held the job back into the ring and then
does that really cool guillotine move he does where he
jumps over the top rope and uses the full force of his
descending body weight to drop the guy throat first on
the top rope. Why that has never been in a video
game, I’ll never know. The problem with this match,
however, is that just like all other Warrior matches,
even when the opponent is supposed to have the upper
hand, you wouldn’t know it from Hellwig’s selling
handicap.

Suddenly, we get Ravishing Rick Rude at ringside (that
was a lot of “R’s” in that sentence). Rude is
convinced that posing like Luger is going to throw
Warrior off his game. The fatal flaw in his game plan
is that Warrior actually has to be looking in his
direction in order to notice that he’s there before he
can be distracted. Rude poses for about 5 minutes
before Hellwig acknowledges his presence. Lord Alfred
praises Warrior for keeping his head in the game,
which considering the relationship of Hellwig and
Steph’s hubby, sounds really bad. Almost as bad as
what Schiavone says next:

“The strength of the Ultimate Warrior…getting the
Macho Man off!”

And while I’m thinking of sexual slang unintentionally
winding up in wrestling commentary I give you JR’s
description of the object of the tag team ladder match
at No Mercy ’99.

“Scurry up that ladder…Grab that sack!”

Okay, now that I got that out of my system, Warrior
finally decides to do something to stop Rude’s insipid
posing. Hayes retracts his praise of the Warrior as
he allowed himself to be distracted by Rude. Mach
comes off the top with a double axe handle and rolls
back in the ring just in time to beat the count.
Savage and Rude hug and are promptly thwamped by
Hellwig since the hug was a violation of his “queering
don’t make the world work” motto. We are then treated
to the very first gorilla press slam outside of the
opening montage of the entire tape. Back to Warrior
Central for Jim’s thoughts:

“I accept any and all challenges. Those were the
words that came from the Ultimate Warrior from the day
he stepped on to this unknown planet from Parts
Unknown. And those are the words I live by now. When
you, Rick Rude, challenged me to the Super Pose Down,
a territory that was FOREIGN to ME, I had no problems,
I didn’t even have to think twice. I said take the
challenge because from looking at you, your frail and
weak body (at least Rude could probably still buy off
the rack), I knew I could live up to it. But, when it
was obvious that you were beat at your own challenge,
AT YOUR OWN GAME! AFTER I STEPPED into your world,
you took the cheap shot. But, the eye in the back of
the head, the Warriors on my body parts (again with
the body parts line, oy gevault) told me ’we will give
you the medicine to withstand the pain because the
challenges that will follow will only be weak compared
to the ones that you have already passed. Now, Rick
Rude, you carry the Intercontinental belt. But the
Ultimate Warrior lives for one thing. To seek and
destroy those who stand in the pathway of my destiny.
I will recapture the Intercontinental belt, more
powerfully than I ever did the first time, and you,
Rick Rude, will be the one covered by the SACRED
CROOOWWNNNN!!!!”

Not sure about that Sacred Crown thing but that was a
pretty boss promo. We’re now finally at the last
section of this first tape.

Match #6: Highlights of the first four months of the
Warrior/Rude feud.

Why they chose the Super Pose Down as the clip to show
in its entirety, I’ll never know. If this served any
inspiration for the formation of the WBF, then Vince
should have never been allowed to take the Dingo
Warrior from the Von Erichs.

Mean Gene’s in the ring and he’s trying to get us to
believe that the world has been chomping at the bit to
see a pair of sweaty, oiled up, freakishly muscular
dudes flex for our pleasure. Not a lot to talk about
here because I mean, it’s posing. What’s there to
talk about? Upon entering the ring, Rude states that
he made this challenge for prove 2 things: He’s
better put together that Warrior, and he’s the sexiest
man alive (Rick Martel and HBK would have this same
basis for a feud three years later). Hey, there’s
that kid with the ugly forest green Warrior face paint
they showed during the Haku match, and then we get
Governor Bod’s favorite line to describe Hellwig.

“He’s an idiot!”

The posing goes on for 10 minutes, which I think is
the exact length of time it usually takes Hogan to
leave the ring before he’s done with his post match
posing. Rude beats down UW with the flexi-bar that he
brought with him and then chokes him with it. That
sets up…

The Wrestlemania 5 IC title bout that Heenan
complained about in “Self-Destruction”. Nothing
terribly special about the clip they show other than
the title change and the sloppy press slam on Heenan.

Clips from 2 rematches are show. Warrior loses that’s
all we really need or care to know save for that in
the middle of the second rematch, while Warrior has
Rude in the tree of woe and his doing his impression
of the Radio City Music Hall Rockettes into to Rude’s
abs, the theme music starts playing and we get that
eerie Twilight Zone-esque fade between the match and
Warrior Central. It’s as if Warrior was using a
pirate satellite to intercept the match broadcast and
transmit his message, kind of like that scene in “They
Live”. These are Hellwig’s parting words:

“If you cannot stand in the hard times, in the bad
times, in the dark times, with the Ultimate
Warrior…THEN LET GO NOW!!!! Let go of the body parts
and flow in the pathways of all the normal people.
Because where I come from, where only creatures of bad
habit live, beasts that you can only imagine, I will
not return until my mission has been accomplished
(doesn’t seem like that was what he was originally
going to say but oh well). But, you, Rick Rude, seem
to think that laughter is the best medicine for the
feat you have accomplished. Let me remind you that
the venom, the poison of the Warriors has been
injected into your frail, weak body, and if you become
slow and lethargic, The Warrior will only squash you
into the pulp that you already are. Because you
understand that there is no one in the WWF or the
entire universe that can deal or handle.. THE ULTIMATE
WARRIOOOORRRRRR!!!!!!”

Wow, 90 minutes and what was said was 20x more
interesting than what was done. I applaud the man for
his intensity and verbal skills. It reminded me of a
www.scoopthis.com parody article I once read entitled
“The Ultimate Warrior’s Def Comedy Jam”. Funny stuff,
and considering that Microsoft Works has decided to
make that a link, you can probably go to that site and
check that out for yourself.

Continuing the history lesson, we flash forward 3
years to 1992. This second Ultimate Warrior video
sadly contains no promos as it was one of Coliseum
Videos “we only got an hour, let’s not blow it on
talking” projects, which apparently was the
inspiration for TNA Impact. We have two brief host
segments with Sean Mooney at the beginning and end,
the first one that does little more than tell us that
the first match is Warrior/Hogan from WM6 and the last
one thanks us for bothering to rent a video without a
4 star match.

The true opening segment however is Warrior Jim
rescuing the mighty Hulk Hogan from the insidious
attack of The Godfather, the former women’s champ, and
the guy who tried to kill Arn Anderson with a pair of
scissors (also know as the accounting firm of Shango,
Wippleman, and Sid). Let me get this straight, a
haircut and the shedding of a few pounds really made
people think that Hellwig had died and was replaced by
someone else. Then, again, the kids at the Catholic
school I went to were saying that in 1990 because he
gelled up his mullet to look like David Bowie and used
different face paint patterns for a week. Makes me
wonder if maybe people really just want Jim Hellwig
dead, considering the persistence of these rumors at
the time, that or people are just dumb-asses (stupid
Microsoft Works is forcing me to use the hyphen or it
will literally change dumb-asses to “debases”. Bill
Gates shall fall to the power of MC_U.S.TitleBelt!!).
Anyway, we get a lot of hugging and posing because
Hogan won by DQ. And Pyro?!?! Wow, Pyro for a DQ
victory. Then, again it was a “special event”, Hogan
retired for the first time and Warrior was back, as
opposed to today when even jabronies get pyro in their
ring entrance (cough-CHRIS MASTERS-cough).

Our first actual match is the biggest thing to happen
in the first 4 months of 1990. The Ultimate
Challenge, this time between Hogan and Warrior and
unlike the ultimate challenge from the last tape, a
title actually changes hands. The original WM6
commentary by Monsoon and Governor Bod is replaced by
Monsoon and Lord Alfred Hayes.

One thing that always seemed odd to me even when I
first saw it was why was it title for title? Wouldn’t
that dictate that if there was a real finish to the
match that one who wins will have to be the man
holding the IC belt since the World Champ has nothing
to gain from also holding the IC belt? Isn’t that why
after Warrior won, they stripped the mid-card belt
from him and had the tournament to put it around the
waist of Mr. P? The only real selling point for a
“title for title” match would be equivocal to a lucha
libre “mask vs. mask” match. The loser loses
everything in the event of a real finish so there is a
lot of prestige at stake. Mystery solved, let’s go to
the match.

Whole lot of stare downs and shoving back and forth to
start this one off, followed by about 5 minutes of the
test of strength by virtue of the Greco-Roman knuckle
lock. It goes both ways so neither man establishes
dominance. Now we get that criss-cross thing that
they did during their first encounter at the Royal
Rumble, only this time the result is a trade off of
scoop slams. Warrior clotheslines Hogan to the
outside and The Hulk blows out his knee. Less than a
minute later, he forgets to sell the knee injury and
Monsoon dismisses it as adrenaline. I just heard Lord
Alfred say that Hogan was quick as a response to
Hogan’s whip to the buckle/clothesline in the corner
combo. Many adjectives describe Terry Bollea. Even
in 1990, quick would not have been one of them.
Warrior looks like he’s going for a head butt, but
decides that his chest will inflict more damage to The
Immortal One’s noggin. It is one of the funniest
things I’ve ever seen in a match. Now it’s rest hold
time….









I think I’ll get some ice cream…



















Dang, he’s still doing that reverse chinlock. I was
gone 7 minutes. Wait, Warrior’s fighting back. He
bounces off the ropes and they clothesline each other.
I really hate this spot. Treb and I have discussed
ad nauseum why this spot is stupid. Two reasons:

1). To make a clothesline look effective, much less
good, is the job of the one receiving the clothesline.
Having both men take one at the same time means that
neither man can do anything but drop straight down
once they leave their feet. This makes for a very
stale looking clothesline.

2). When you consider that a running clothesline is a
fairly “telegraphed” maneuver, a thinking wrestler
would first evade and then counter attack how he sees
fit, not stand there like a moron with his arm
extended just like his opponent and wait to see who is
more likely to fall when they collide. It gives
credence to the “big, dumb wrestler” stereotype, and
also insults the intelligence of the audience.

As a result of the most horrible spot ever invented,
we are treated to Dave Hebner’s 50 year count to 10.
By the time they are on their feet again, it is
no-sell comeback time for both our heroes, that is
until Warrior goes for Hogan’s Kryptonite…the bear
hug. 3 minutes of that until Hulk breaks free and
sends Hellwig into Hebner for the inevitable ref bump
(wait a sec… Hogan, Hellwig, Hebner…oh my gosh, it’s
TRIPLE H!!!! AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!). Pin
attempts by both men but the ref is still out. Repeat
that same process only with the dazed Hebner’s slow as
molasses in January 2 counts. Warrior Jim lost a
tassel from his bicep at some point as there is one
lying in the middle of the ring. Press slam time.
Hulk kicks out, shakes it off and does his lamaze.
Misses the leg drop, but Warrior doesn’t miss the
splash and we get the only clean job by Hogan for
another 6 years. Hogan passes the torch and Lord
Alfred calls him chivalrous and a role model. Again,
debatable points.

It’s now time to get to what this video’s primary
focus seems to be. The Ultimate Warrior/Papa Shango
feud. These were all the matches that sucked too much
for TV for a feud that never had a conclusive end.
Gorilla and Lord Alfred are on commentary again, and
Monsoon describes the first bout between Warrior and
Shango as an exclusive match that had never seen the
light of day anywhere. Well, somebody had to have
seen it. A crowd was present, albeit a small crowd,
but a crowd nonetheless.

Alfred says that Coliseum Video moved Heaven and Earth
to bring us this contest. Seems like an awful lot of
work just to bring us a match that the masses weren’t
exactly clamoring for. Literally nothing happens in
this match that we haven’t seen from Hellwig before
and Charles Wright proved that he needed a more
appealing gimmick though it would be six more years
before he finally broke out as The Godfather and
paraded around with some of the most unattractive
women who were played up as hot that I ever set eyes
upon.

Next we get Warrior vs. Skinner with Vince and Mr. P
on commentary. Vince says:

“Nobody excites a crowd like the Ultimate Warrior!”

To a certain degree, Vince was right. When he was a
title holder, or in a program with a high profile
opponent, he was a site to behold. Skinner is hardly
high profile and this match is another Goldberg-esque
squash with a complete lack of surprise. Ingenuity, or
the usual enthusiasm that normally accompanied the
Warrior. Then again, I have noticed a significant
difference between the two tapes and to a certain
extent, the first two segments of the second tape
compared to the rest. The audience really seemed to
cool off in the second tape in how they reacted to
Hellwig as opposed to the first. UW had practically
eclipsed Hogan in cheer ratio. You could tell that at
WM 8 the fans were genuinely pumped that Jim had come
back. After all, Hogan was taking time off to film
“Mr. Nanny”… I mean retiring. Surely, Warrior was
coming back to ascend to the highest levels of the
industry just as he had done before. So what do they
do with him. Stuck him in a pointless feud with the
lesser of Hogan’s attackers in that match and kill
every ounce of momentum that his return had generated.
But enough about that…

Warrior’s next opponent is Hogan’s baby sitter, Brian
Knobs. Yet another uneventful squash, the highlight
of which was Hellwig losing a wristband and Papa
Shango coming out to steal it to work some voodoo that
we don’t get to see because the video cuts to the next
match while Shango shakes his smoking skull (Austin
stole his gimmick title belt idea from Papa Shango,
and people bitch about John Cena‘s spinny belts being
abominations.), though I think that it may have been
the “pea soup” incident that resulted from this.

And now for the liver and onion flavored icing on this
cake. A tag match teaming the Warrior with the guy
who has had more storylines involving his death and
return than Jean Grey of the X-Men, The Undertaker,
taking on Bush Sr.’s Voodoo Economics advisor, Papa
Shango and “The Berzerker” John Nord. There is an
inexplicable stare down between Warrior and Taker
until the heels rush in and are greeted with boots to
the head and clotheslines to the outside. The only
thing keeping my interest in this match is John Nord
Huss-ing about ringside. Warrior comes in for tag
bitch duty. Calloway is asleep on the apron, but does
half heartedly attempt to rescue his partner from a
double team about half way through. He’s finally
tagged in and does his ‘Taker schtick including that
flying clothesline thing he could do when he was still
agile and a whole lot of choking. Warrior decides he
wants in but doesn’t bother to tag. The ref allows
this and Mean Mark returns to his corner to do more
nothing. A big splash to Nord and this match, and
this tape, are mercifully over.



So, what do I think about these “first class
productions from Coliseum Video”? The first tape was
fun for nostalgia’s sake and the fact that they
actually had Hellwig doing host segments and treating
us to the raving that endeared him to us in the first
place. That fact alone made the first video one that
I would recommend watching if for nothing else, a
chance to laugh. The second video, on the other hand,
left a lot to be desired as the only passable match
for Warrior standards was The Ultimate Challenge. Had
there been shots of the various goofiness that
occurred away from the ring in the Warrior/Shango
showdown and then had Jim do his thing from Warrior
Central, that would have made it a lot more fun. So,
if you find these two at the video store, check the
date. The one that says 1989, would be the one to
rent.

Author’s note:

Dang, that was hard work. Many obstacles and
distractions delayed getting this in, to say nothing
of what it took to get all those Warrior quotes just
right. It was literally identical to that scene in
Purple Rain after Prince’s dad shot himself, prompting
Prince to actually sit down and learn Wendy and Lisa’s
song. While he’s sitting at the piano, he plays the
tape, rewind, playback and repeat the process, that
was me with the VCR remote about every 7 seconds. The
only difference is that my dad hadn’t just shot
himself when I was doing this. He was cussing at
whatever football game happened to be on when I had
enough consciousness and an unoccupied computer at
home to type it since the computer in the lobby at
work was stolen right out from under the boss’s nose,
preventing me from not only going on the World
Wrestling Insanity message boards, but getting this
typed last week as well.






“The promos of the Ultimate Warrior”


We’re back. Now, if you read the first part, those
were some pretty wacky words that came from the mouth
of Jim Hellwig. Especially that thing about hanging
on to his body parts, what a nut! However, I thought
that to make things even more fun since even “The
Self-Destruction of The Ultimate Warrior” didn’t get
his best promo work and even I don’t actually have my
favorite Warrior promo (but if anybody happens to have
the late February 1990 edition of The Main Event on
tape, I’ll pay money for it as it has my favorite
Warrior promo in the aftermath of Hogan saving Warrior
from Earthquake after the Warrior/Dino Bravo match.),
to transcribe and comment upon every PPV promo I could
find with Warrior in it. The only one I left out that
I had was Summer Slam ’91 because Hogan hogged the mic
and Hellwig really didn’t say anything cool.

We begin with Survivor Series ’88 and Shawn Mooney is
interviewing a recently victorious Ultimate Warrior.

“BROTHER, THERE MUST BE A PROBLEM HERE BECAUSE IT
SEEMS TO ME THAT YOU CAN STILL BREATHE PROPERLY!!!
WELL, THE ULTIMATE WARRIOR CAN’T AND NEITHER CAN ALL
THE WARRIORS OUT THERE BECAUSE THE POWER GOT SHOVED
DOWN OUR THROAT… SO FAR, THEY’RE HAVIN’ A HARD TIME.
BUT, MY TEAM OF FIVE, YOU SEE. THEY WENT WITHOUT
FOOD, THEY WENT WITHOUT SLEEP, THEY WENT WITH OUT ALL
THE LUXURIES THAT NORMAL MORTALS ARE USED TO HAVING.
BECAUSE MY TEAM DIDN’T CARE. THEY DIDN’T WANT TO SHOW
ANY MERCY AND THEY KNEW THAT THE ULTIMATE WARRIOR
WOULD STAND THROUGH ALL THE THICK AND THIN WITH THEM.
EVERY MEMBER ON MY TEAM WAS A WINNER. EVERY MEMBER
GAVE ALL THEY HAD, AND WHEN THE DONE WAS DONE, WE WERE
ALL OVERRRRRRRR!!!!!!”

The first time I watched that promo on Thanksgiving
Day 1990 (The Hy-Vee Food Store in Mason City, Iowa,
had it in its video rental section and I figured if I
couldn’t see the actual ppv that night, I’d at least
get to watch a Survivor Series on Thanksgiving).
Amazingly, Hellwig was right about the not breathing
properly thing. I had an asthma attack and had to
have a breathing treatment. Not because of anything
The Warrior did or said, but that winter really sucked
for me in terms of asthma problems.

The measures he said his team took to prepare
themselves sounds like what TNA “does” for
participants in a Monster’s Ball match with all the
sleep, food, and luxury deprivation. His statements
about them showing no mercy were a bit off kilter as
Sam Houston, Jumpin’ Jim Brunzell, and Blue Blazer
Owen Hart were jobbed out in rapid succession. Brutus
the Barber Beefcake didn’t even really do anything
except get himself and Honky Tonk Man counted out when
he decided that it would be sound strategy to put a
sleeper hold on Honky outside the ring with a count
going.

His last statement “WE WERE ALL OVERRRRRR!!!” sounds
like carnie speak. Being that he was the only one
left when all was said and done, he was the only one
who ended up being over. Awful nice of him to give
his team credit though for softening up the bad guys
before he annihilated the opposition. This was an
okay promo, but it wasn’t quite up to the lunacy that
UW was capable of. Granted this was still fairly
early in his meteoric rise to the top and his full
blown zaniness wasn’t really fully established until
1989.


Speaking of which, the next PPV promo that we got from
Hellwig that actually made it on video was at Summer
Slam ’89 just before the rematch against Rick Rude for
the Intercontinental belt.

“THE CONDITIONS THAT I HAVE HAVE ALREADY CONTINUED TO
WORSEN AS I HAVE BROKEN LOOSE FROM ALL THE STRAIGHT
JACKETS AND ALL THE RUBBER ROOMS ACROSS THESE WEAK
PLANETS AND YOU, ANDRE THE GIANT, WILL REALIZE THAT
THE POWER WILL BECOME THE EIGHTH WONDER OF THE WORLD…
AS WE EAT YOU ALIVE!!!!! But, you, Ravishing Rick
Rude, AS I PROMISED YOU WILL SURRENDER TO THE GODS
ABOVE AS I BEAT YOU 1…2…3!!!!!!”


That’s what I’m talking about. Weak planets,
cannibalism, “Surrender to the Gods above!” That’s
what we like to hear in a Jim Hellwig promo. This was
a great lead in to the near 20 minutes he and Rude
spent out in the ring. That match was also great
because of the banter between Governor Bod and Tony
Schiavone. Warrior hit Rude with the belt outside the
ring and Bod wondered why he wasn’t DQ’ed. Schivone
suggested that it was because it happened outside the
ring. Governor Bod responded with probably his best
line ever. “What are you saying, Schivone, that you
can shoot someone outside the ring, but it’s legal
because it’s outside the ring?!?” This prompted Treb
and I to coin the term “Schivone Logic” to justify any
illegal act as perfectly fine because it happened
outside a wrestling ring, both in the arena and in
daily life. But, I’m getting off topic. Needless to
say, this was probably his shortest, but most
effective promo at that time. Applause to the Warrior
on that one. That leads us to…

Survivor Series ‘89

Hellwig actually got to do two promos that turkey day,
the first was during the preamble where all the
participants stated what they were thankful for
(including Ted DiBiase’s classic “I’m thankful because
I’m rich and you’re not!” and Roddy Piper’s equally
awesome “I’m thankful cuz I ain’t Ricky Rude.”). I’m
not sure if this really stated any degree of
thankfulness on the part of The Warrior, but this is
what he said:

“THANKS IS GIVEN EVERY DAY BUT EXSPECIALLY THIS DAY AS
THE WARRIORS GIVE ME THE INTENT TO DELIVER THE POWER…
AT SURVIVOR SERIES… IT’S GOING TO BE A WAARRRRRRR!!!!”

I didn’t misspell especially, I quoted exactly what he
said. Amazingly, spell check didn’t attempt to
correct it, which is weird. What I don’t get is
doesn’t UW have the motivation on his own to deliver
the power? He needs the Warriors to give him the
intent, and what the hell does that mean anyway? Oh,
well. No sense in dwelling on unsolvable mysteries
especially since Robert Stack is no longer with us to
urge us to call 1-800-876-5353 with information
regarding the case. The promo before the match
against “The Heenan Family” was just as weird and four
times as fun because there are four guys who have
something to say.

Jim Neidhart: “BOBBY HEENAN! BRAIN BUSTERS! HAKU!
ANDRE THE GIANT!”

(Anvil cackles as Warrior grabs his head and starts
messing with his shades)

“I HOPE WE DON’T RUIN YOUR PARTY, HAHAHAHAHAHA!! I
HOPE WE DON’T EAT TOO MUCH OF YOUR CAKE AND ICE
CREAM!!!!”

(Anvil cackles again and gets a worried expression on
his face as Warrior grabs him by the goatee and
yanks).

Marty Jannetty: “Whooo, there’s gonna be a whole lotta
rock n rollin’. A whole lot of struttin’ and
strollin’. Takin’ care of business as we’re fired up
and we are ready.”

HBK(as Warrior grabs both Rockers by the hair and
starts to shake them violently: “I tell you what, the
Warriors are ready to rock. And the Heenan Family,
get ready to roll. Cuz the Ultimate Warriors are
comin with both guns loaded and they’re gonna take the
Heenan Family downtown!”

Warrior: THESE MEN HAVE STRETCHED THEIR LIMITS!
THESE MEN HAVE TAKEN STEPS IN PARTS UNKNOWN! THESE
MEN WON’T LEAVE ORGAN DONOR CARDS WITH THE POWER.
YOU, THE HEENAN FAMILY, HAVE NOT FULLY UNITED! I HAVE
TAKEN THESE MEN INTO THE DEEPEST DARKEST PARTS WHERE
ONLY PAIN AND CREATURES OF BAD HABIT LIVE! THEY KNOW
WE SHALL PREVAIL AS THE ULTIMATE WARRIOOORRRS!!!!!!”


That was a riot! Neidhart was just as goofy if not
more so than Warrior. I love that “cake and ice
cream” comment just for the “out of left field” nature
of it. And the look on his face when the other Jim is
tugging on his goatee was priceless. HBK left out the
fact that they would be taking them “downtown to
Chinatown”. Oh, wait, that’s a Jericho-ism. But,
that might have been funny anyway. What was so down
right absurd that it was funny was Warrior’s “THESE
MEN WON’T LEAVE ORGAN DONOR CARDS WITH THE POWER!”
What the hell does that mean? Actually, if we knew,
it probably wouldn’t be half as funny.

Now we begin the promos of “The year of the Blade
Runners”, 1990. Coliseum Video was kind enough to
provide us with promos of many of the participants in
the Rumble match at Royal Rumble 1990. Right before
Warrior’s promo, Honky Tonk Man proved that I can play
guitar better than he can and I suck. What follows is
actually my second favorite Warrior PPV promo probably
of all time.


“IF THEY REFUSE… to understand that the power of the
Ultimate Warrior has spread like a virus amongst the
WWF, then let them continue to walk… as normal as they
seem.

But, if these 28 normal men want to have special
attractions such as Royal Rumble, then you and I as
the Warriors, the most powerful force in the WWF, will
continue to see it ONLY AS ANOTHER CHALLENGE! Only as
another day of combat.

28 of those normal men, stacked one on top of another
can’t come close to the feelings and the destinations
from Parts Unknown.

You realize as I do… that the 29th man… YOU, HOAK
HOGAN, walk with a different force field around you.
Walk on horizons that are close… to where I’ve been.

But, no one in the Royal Rumble shall form a team.
Every man shall fight for what he feels is in himself.
And I, the Ultimate Warrior, will fulfill another
DESTINYYYYYY!!!!”

Once again, I didn’t misspell “Hulk”. Up until after
the Ultimate Challenge, Hellwig couldn’t seem to make
the “L” sound and it ended up sounding like an “O”.
This was one of the first Wrestling videos I ever
rented when I became a serious fan, and both then and
now, I have always found this promo to be a perfect
display of the disjointed mishmash that had a tendency
to spew from the mouth of the Ultimate Warrior. This
was what made him entertaining. You don’t have a clue
what his intentions are, but what he’s saying sounds
incredibly profound and that’s pretty cool. He
probably sat around reading Webster’s Dictionary
picking out words that sounded good. Now we come to
the Ultimate Challenge. In order to really get the
full scope of the gravity of this promo, we actually
have to get both participants promos. First up is The
Hulkster, and he actually gives us probably his finest
promo at that stage of the game.

“You know somethin’, Mean Gene. You don’t have to
remind me and my Hulkamaniacs that at Skydome, we’re
gonna face the Ultimate Challenge, brother. When we
crossed the border from the United States of America
to Canada, I was hovering over Skydome, brother. I
saw what was beneath me, man. I saw the greatest
arena of all times where the Ultimate Challenge will
take place. And as we landed, brother, nothing but
stark raving Hulkamaniacs were there to greet me at
the airport. Nothing but positive vibes, man!
Hulkamania is running wild like it’s never ran before.
But, The Ultimate Warrior, you must realize that when
you step in the Skydome, when you feel the energy
that’s gonna run wild through out the arena. Those
are my people, that’s my energy, brother!

And Ultimate Warrior, this is where the power lies,
man, in the power of the Hulkster, the largest arms in
the world. And once I get you down on your knees,
Ultimate Warrior, I’m gonna ask you one question,
brother. I’m gonna ask you, “Do you want to live
forever?” and your answer is yes, Ultimate Warrior,
then breathe your last breath into my body. I can
save you! The Hulkamaniacs can save you! We can turn
the darkness that you live in into the light! We can
save all your little Warriors with the training, the
prayers, and the vitamins!

But, I’ve got to prove one thing to all my
Hulkamaniacs out there. It’s not whether you win or
whether you lose. The only thing that matters is what
kind of winner you are or what kind of loser you are,
and Ultimate Warrior, I sure hope you’re a good loser,
brother! Whatcha gonna do… at Skydome, when the
largest arms in the world and Hulkamania destroys
you!”

(Scene switches to UW’s locker room. Sean Mooney
tries to introduce the Warrior. Hellwig grabs him and
shakes him a bit as the promo starts)

“AAAHH!!! YOU ARE NOTHING BUT A NORMAL!!! YOU DON’T
DESERVE TO BREATHE THE SAME AIR AS I AND HOAK HOGAN
DO!!!!

(UW shoves Mooney out of the frame and continues)

HOAK HOGAN! I MUST ASK YOU NOW, AS YOU ASKED ME… DO
YOU, HOAK HOGAN, WANT YOUR IDEAS, YOUR BELIEFS To live
forevaaahh. FOR HOAK HOGAN, in this normal world,
PHYSICALLY, NONE OF Us can live forever. But, the
places you have taken the Hoakamaniacs, the IDEAS AND
BELIEFS YOU HAVE GIVEN THEM, can live through me, Hoak
Hogan. THAT IS WHY… I BREATHE… THAT IS WHY THE
WARRIORS HAVE COME!

Hoak Hogan, there are ones that question WHERE YOU ARE
TAKING THEM! DO YOU NO LONGER WANT TO WALK OR STEP
into the darkness. Hoak Hogan, the darkness I speak
of is nothing to fear. It is about the beliefs… of
accepting any and all challenges at the cost of losing
everything, Hoak Hogan. YOU HAVE LIVED, HOAK HOGAN,
FOR THE LAST FIVE WRESTLEMANIAS… FOR THIS ONE BELIEF!
Now, Hoak Hogan… I COME TO TAKE WHAT YOU BELIEVE IN
FURTHER THAN YOU EVER COULD.

I COME, HOAK HOGAN, NOT TO DESTROY THE HOAKAMANIACS…
AND HOAKAMANIA. I COME, Hoak Hogan, to bring the
Warriors and Hoakamaniacs together as one, as we, Hoak
Hogan, accept ALL THE CHALLENGES, with the strengths
of all the War-yahs and the Hoakamaniacs together.

Hoak Hogan, the colors of the Hoakamaniacs… ARE COMING
THROUGH THE PORES OF MY SKIN!!!!

And Hoak Hogan…When we meet, Hoak Hogan… I WILL LOOK
AT YOU, and you will realize then that I have come TO
DO NO ONE NO HARM! But, only, Hoak Hogan, to take
what we both believe in to places IT SHALL NEVER HAVE
BEEEEEEEN!!!!!”


That was one of the most intense and thought provoking
set of promos that those two ever produced. It served
a number of purposes. First, for the detectives out
there, it foreshadowed the defeat of Hogan when he
pointed out “It’s not whether you win or whether you
lose, all that matters is what kind of winner you are
or what kind of loser you are,” which in turn
foreshadowed the fact that Hogan was going to be a
gracious loser by handing the title over to Warrior
and congratulating him on a well fought victory. It
was actually the most role model-esque action that
Hogan ever displayed. Second, it displayed that from
a dramatic standpoint, this was in fact a dilemma for
the Warrior. He and Hulk Hogan were both of the same
mindset that they were the one destined to be the hero
of all the kids watching WWF programming. Warrior,
however, did not disagree with Hogan’s ideals, rather
they seemed to be on the same page in that respect,
and felt that he had to prove to Hogan that not only
was he worthy of the fans adoration, but he would also
be a worthy successor to lead the Hulkamaniacs in
Hogan’s absence. It is actually a great tale of honor
and subsequently, friendship, as Hogan and Warrior
departed the match as friends and as equals. I really
wonder who was on the writing staff at the time
because I would love to shake their hands. Plus, some
of the outlandish statements made were great for a
laugh. The Hulk’s messiah complex showing through his
“Breathe your last breath into my body, I can save
you!” line. The Warrior speaking of the colors of the
Hulkamaniacs coming through the pores of his skin… to
which Treb replied when we were discussing this the
other day “It’s just ketchup and mustard there, Jim.
Nothing to worry about.”

We now move on to Summer Slam 1990, Live from the
Philadelphia Spectrum. I’d like to note that during
Ravishing Rick Rude’s promo leading into the cage
match against the Warrior, he made this statement:

“Philadelphia is filled with history. Why it was
right here in the Spectrum, where the Italian
Stallion, Rocky Balboa faced the seemingly invincible
Apollo Creed. But that was Hollywood, this is
reality…”

It just makes you laugh when you know that they’re
working off a script and someone, for the sake of
kayfabe, puts in a line about reality. Anyway, you’ll
notice, as it was a little less than a month since
U.S. Troops were deployed to form Operation: Desert
Shield and that they were in the city that was
originally intended to be the capitol of the USA, that
The Warrior’s promo has a lot of mentioning of our
forefathers and other patriotic ramblings.

(Warrior snorts and growls as Mean Gene introduces
him)

“DO YOU know what Rick Rude and Bobby Heenan have in
common with the Liberty Bell… One is cracked, the
other is a ding-dong!”

(both men chuckle about this for a moment, but Warrior
gets Mean Gene back on task with a growl. Okerlund
then goes on to try and cast doubt in Warrior Jim’s
mind about him never having been in a cage match and
that Rude has beaten him before. This is the
Warrior’s reply)

“WHEN IN THE COURSE OF HUMAN EVENTS, IT becomes
necessary to protect my inalienable right to BE… The
World Wrestling Federation Champion, I MUST DO WHAT
OUR FOREFATHERS HAVE ALWAYS DONE. NEVER AFRAID TO
FACE… AN ADVERSARY. Always willing to step into a
new frontier. Always willing to make a sacrifice.
AND, YOU, RICK RUDE will not be able to prevent the
establishment of a more perfect union between me and
my Warriors. FOR THE SACRIFICE THAT WE ARE PREPARED
TO MAKE AGAINST AN ADVERSARY IS FAR GREATER THAN
ANYTHING… YOU COULD EVER KNOW!!!!

We don’t fear the unknown of a new frontier, Rick
Rude… WE REVEL IT!!! IT IS THESE THINGS THAT ARE THE
LIFEBLOOD OF THE ULTIMATE NATION! AND IT IS THESE
THINGS THAT ARE THE LIFEBLOOD OF THE ULTIMATE…
wo-yaaah-hah!”

I really like it when he finishes on a whisper like
that, especially when because of speech impediments,
he mispronounces things and it sounds really cool. I
also like it when Jim’s promos have a mix of shouting
and normal volume or whispering. When it’s nothing
but shouting, there seems to be a lack of attempting
to psyche-out the opposition and doesn’t come off
quite as nicely. This was just right for the
situation Warrior was in. Talking about not being
afraid of the unknown, that it only makes the
challenge that much sweeter. That is what the fans
wanted to hear from their hero. They wanted someone
who had the courage to look the unknown straight in
the eye and not back down an inch. Awesome.

The next PPV was my favorite Survivor Series ever.
Both promos will be the entire team’s promo. The
first promo was for the opening bout where Mr. Perfect
and the three members of Demolition would be facing
Warrior, Kerry Von Erich, and LOD. Here’s how it went
down:

Hawk: “I DON’T KNOW WHAT MY THOUGHTS ARE EXACTLY
EXCEPT THE FOUR OF US ARE GONNA TAKE THE FOUR OF THEM
WHATEVER IT TAKES, GENE!”

Texas Tornado: “YOU’VE SEEN WHAT DEMOLITION CAN DO,
AND YOU’VE SEEN WHAT PERFECT CAN DO! NOW, CHECK OUT
WHAT WE CAN DO!

Animal: “DEMOLITION, MR. PERFECT! SUBMISSION IS ONE
WAY TO GO DOWN AND FOR ALL THE LITTLE WARRIORS, THE
LITTLE TORNADOES, AND THE LITTLE DOOMERS, WE WON’T LET
YOU DOWN!

Warrior: “WE NEED NOTHING TO DO… WITH ANYTHING CLOSE
TO PERFECTNESS. I’ve asked all the skeletons that
have already made the sacrifice TO FOLLOW ME… AND
THESE THREE WARRIORS… THE LEGION OF DOOM AND THE TEXAS
TORNADO INTO THIS BATTLE! WHETHER TO WALK FARTHER
THAN ALL THE REST, OR TO STAY BEHIND AND MAKE THE
SACRIFICE. It makes no difference, Mr. Perfect and
Demolition, FOR AS THE ULTIMATE WARRIOR, I SURROUND US
IN THIS FORCE FIELD AND WE HAVE BE COME ONE. WE HAVE
FORMED A BOND LIKE NO OTHER. AND NO…ONE CAN BREAK
WHAT WE HAVE CREATED. THERE IS NO POISON, NO
CREATION, AND NO MEDICINE TO CURE WHAT WE HAVE… YOU,
MR. PERFECT AND DEMOLITION WILL NOT SURVIVE!”

It is never actually explained why Warrior is
captaining this team. He’s the only one who isn’t
feuding with someone on the opposite team. Tornado
and Mr. P were warring over the IC belt and Demolition
blamed LOD for the loss of the Tag Titles to The Hart
Foundation. And this is actually how it was set up
from the beginning. It would have made more sense to
me if either Macho King or Rick Rude were captaining
the opposing team since other feuds were still
carrying over from Summer Slam and because Savage was
starting to get in Hellwig’s face. But, before Rude
left the company, WWF Magazine actually had him as a
lesser player on Earthquake’s “Natural Disasters”
since Rude was now caught in Bobby Heenan’s problems
with the Big Boss Man, who was a member of “The
Hulkamaniacs”, and Savage was sitting out Survivor
Series for the first time in its history at that point
for unexplained reasons (though he did show up to do
an interview with Mean Gene). That being said, The
Warrior sure had some tough talk for guys that he
didn’t presently have a beef with, and it came off
just as intense and insane as he ever has.

It also made me wonder for a long time when I wasn’t
aware of the scripting aspect of things why would you
schedule the match that the champ is involved in
first. Shouldn’t he be in the last match of the
evening before the Grand Finale Match of Survival?
When I wised up, I realized what a brilliant plot
device this was. Okay, the champ is the sole survivor
of the first match. In the next two matches, Ted
DiBiase outlasts Bret Hart when they were the last two
for their respective squads and Rick Martel’s team,
“The Visionaries”, dispose of Jake Roberts and “The
Vipers” without losing a man. Being that there are
now 5 heels, two very powerful men in the form of
Hercules and The Warlord, and 3 talented technical
wrestlers in DiBiase, Martel, and Roma, are up against
one Ultimate Warrior. It makes us hope that Hulk
Hogan and Nikolai Volkoff’s teams can keep some of
their guys in the game to help the champ out of this
jam. Both teams come through, sort of. The heels
still outnumber the faces, but the faces you have are
Ultimate Warrior, Hulk Hogan, and Tito Santana. All
very capable of taking care of business, even though
poor Tito has been little more than a glorified jobber
on PPV following his big win over The Executioner at
the first Wrestlemania. The Million Dollar Man tries
to make us believe that there will be no solidarity on
the face team because of Hogan and Warrior’s encounter
earlier in the year at WM6. I fail to understand that
considering that they parted on good terms at the end
of the Ultimate Challenge so who is DiBiase trying to
kid? When the faces cut their promo with Sean Mooney,
confidence is much higher than the heels would like to
believe:


Hogan: “Well, you know something, little dude… We’re
not worried about the odds being stacked against us.
You know, the way I count this thing, brother, us
those five over there are against The Warrior, my man,
Tito Santana; The Stark-Raving Hulkster, and millions
of millions of those little Hulkamaniacs out there,
brother. You know, this is what it’s all about,
brother. I’ve been around the WWF for quite some time
now, and the Hulkster has always ruled. But never
before have I seen such intensity in a man like the
Ultimate Warrior, brother. To rise to the top so
fast, to take it all the way, and to have so many
little Warriors following him, brother. And as far as
Tito Santana goes, brother, me and the Ariba man have
been around since day one. And as far as I’m
concerned, me, Tito, The Ultimate Warrior, we’re gonna
survive this thing, brother!”

Santana: “This is what it’s all about, baby! The
Grand Finale! Million Dollar Man, The Visionaries,
you turkeys! The odds are not against us, baby! We
are here for one reason… To Survive, Baby, The Grand
Finale!

Warrior: “WE HAVE TAKEN THIS MANY FOOTSTEPS TO GET
THIS FAR! THE HULKAMANIACS THAT MADE THE SACRIFICE…
AND THE WARRIORS THAT FOLLOWED ME THAT FELL LIKE
SKELETONS THAT MADE THEIR SACRIFICES! THEY WALK WITH
US INTO THIS BATTLE AND WE TAKE ALL THOSE THAT BELIEVE
IN ONE PURPOSE… TO DO COMBAT WITH THOSE THAT BELIEVE
THEY ARE THE GREATEST! YOU, POWER AND GLORY, A
REMINDER THAT WE FEED OFF SUCH THINGS! AND YOU, RICK
THE MODEL MARTEL, NO COMPETITION TO THE POWERS THAT WE
POSSESS IN HULKAMANIA, AND WARRIOR WILDNESS, AND
ARIBADERCHE!

Hogan: “You know the way I feel about it, dudes.
This is the 11th hour, brother, and we’re walking that
fine razor’s edge between greatness or disaster. And
the way things stack up, with all those Hulkamaniacs,
with everything runnin’ wild out there, brother,
there’s no way they’re gonna beat us. The energy!
The focus! The mind, body, and soul! Whatcha gonna
do when our team survives and wipes out you dudes out
there!”


With the exception of the fact that Warrior doesn’t
know what “Aribaderche” means, this promo was solid.
I was literally sold on the idea that the three of
them were going to come out of that with the entire
team intact. And the way the match started with Tito
immediately eliminating The Warlord with the flying
forearm after the bell sounded, it looked like that
was going to be the case. Unfortunately for Tito, he
got punked so that Hogan and Warrior could hog the
spotlight when all was said and done, but at least he
was allowed to make an impact in the match.

The last promo that I have is Warrior’s last
meaningful promo on PPV ever. It was the lead in to
his match against Sgt. Slaughter.

(Mean Gene asks who is going to be giving the orders
in the match)

“THE ORDERS THAT YOU GIVE, SGT. SLAUGHTER, ONLY FALL
UPON DEAF EARS! FOR, I, SGT. SLAUGHTER, GIVE NO
ORDERS. I ONLY TAKE THEM. NOT FROM YOU, SGT.
SLAUGHTER, BUT FROM THE WARRIORS THAT RIDE UPON MY
BACK!”

(Mean Gene brings up the turmoil that Sgt. Slaughter
talked about in his promo)

“THE turmoil you have created is nothing but a grain
of sand in the desert. A desert where a fox hole will
be created… that will lead you down to defeat!”

(Okerlund questions what kind of leader Sgt. Slaughter
is in Warrior’s opinion)

“My Warriors would never, could never lower themselves
to look up to someone like you. THE ONLY ONES THAT
WOULD FOLLOW YOU ARE DEMENTED! I WALK INTO THIS
BATTLE AS THE ULTIMATE CHAMPION. I walk away as the
ULTIMATE VICTOOOORRRRRR!!!!”

This was the shortest promo of his time as world
champion and it probably served as a dead giveaway
that he was going to lose. His victories were always
preceded by a lengthy promo that didn’t have Mean Gene
asking a lot of questions. Should have seen it
coming. I lament that there were no promos for
Warrior’s two PPV appearances against Randy Savage,
especially the WM7 Career match. I would love to have
heard Warrior contemplate the possibility of his
career ending at the hands of Randy Savage and what
sort of destiny was going to bestowed upon him from
Parts Unknown. Oh, well. I guess we can leave that
to our imaginations.

Thanks for reading.


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