Monday, 31 October 2016

And Once More We Return to Puerto Rico

Ricky Fuyuki v El Rebelde (July 1987)

I didn't care too much for this, but there was some clipping going on in there at points and that sort of took me out of it a bit. You'd have them going in one direction, then there'd be a jump in the tape, and the direction would shift pretty abruptly. I also thought it was worked a bit strangely in that they had a fairly hot opening, but then Fuyuki would make his comebacks and in the back half of the match they started working in nerve holds and armbars. Felt kind of arse backwards. I don't have a clue who El Rebelde is and a quick google search is proving fruitless. He was inoffensive enough, I guess, if not very compelling. Fuyuki got real good a couple years after this, but he wasn't at that level yet as a singles wrestler and it showed. If nothing else he was versatile, and it's neat to see him work in this setting. He certainly wasn't afraid to get thrown out and roll around in the dirt.

Carlos Colon v Hercules Ayala (Texas Death Match) (7/18/87)

This probably could've done with being trimmed by five minutes or so, but it's easily the best Ayala performance so far, and one of the best Colon performances. Purely from a selling perspective I thought it was his best, actually. He's not as expressive a seller as Invader, being more about conveying gritty toughness than sympathy-garnering, but his blood loss selling in the back half of this was truly outstanding, and at times made the beating he was taking pretty harrowing. It's also the craziest blade job he's done. I mean dude is an absolute mess by the end of this, blood streaming out his forehead, his face and chest covered; it was horrifying. In the last few minutes he keeps trying to stand up and fight, but he's out on his feet and Ayala just keeps battering him with punches and stomps. The visual at the end with Colon lying there lifeless as Ayala punches him in the head was like something from a horror movie. He's already dead, just let it be over! I'm still not really sure how good Ayala is, but I get the sense he's at least someone who's easy to work with. He did a lot of nasty shit in this, including choking Colon with the edge of a table and then jumping on said table while it was placed over Colon's face. I also liked him using Colon's own tricks against him by going to the figure four, and that led to Colon breaking it by heeling Ayala in the balls, which is probably the best escape from a figure four I've seen. These two have a barbed wire match coming up and I'm looking forward to seeing how Colon exacts revenge, because if there's one thing about Colon it's that he'll exact revenge in the grizzliest ways possible.

Terry & Dory Funk v The Road Warriors (9/20/87)

Funk was in total crackpot mode again here, him and Dory coming out to the ring to 'Mammas, Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to be Cowboys' (fucking amazing), swinging his chaps and picking fights with fans, being absolutely HAMMERED with trash from all angles. His crazy Puerto Rico run is honest to god one of my favourite things ever in wrestling. He's just completely out of control any time he shows up and doesn't give a shit about anything. I don't think he could get away with it anywhere else. This feels like a pretty big dream match on paper, but other than Terry I didn't think anybody was particularly good in it. Hawk wasn't quite sandbagging folk, but he wasn't really in any mood to be selling. That actually led to a few cool bit where he got super pissed off and just started DRILLING Dory with chair shots. I mean Dory is lying there like a wee old homeless man and Hawk is trying to snuff him. The Roadies aren't too hip to Terry's shtick either and don't play off it very well. Terry will go upside down in the corner and Hawk will stand there waiting for something to happen, when Terry clearly wants Hawk to go over and MAKE something happen. Terry gets his clock cleaned and stumbles punch-drunkenly into the Roadies corner waiting to be dinged by Animal, but Animal doesn't really want to play ball so Terry has to go find someone else to play with. Post-match Hawk is swinging a chair around like a lunatic and there is no way I'd want to be anywhere near him while he does that. I'll take every second of Terry in Puerto Rico I can get, but this was pretty disappointing.

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