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Best of ECW TV Vol. 1

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Guest TSMAdmin

Best of ECW TV Volume 1


April 6, 1993: ECW TV


The original ECW theme song and music video kick this one off. Wrestlers such as Davey Boy Smith, Jim Neidhart, Ivan Koloff, Jimmy Snuka and the Sandman are all featured. Of course only the last two are actually on this tape. .5/1


Jay Sulli and Stevie Wonderful welcome us to Eastern Championship Wrestling on the Sports Channel. Tod Gordon, the ECW President, comes down to ringside with the vacant ECW TV Title. Gordon announces a tournament for the title that will start tonight. Tod is about to announce a third member of the announce team, a living legend...but Eddie Gilbert shows up, much to the chagrin of Gordon. Gordon shows a clip from Quantum Leap to introduce the new commentator. It is none other than Terry Funk. WOW, that movie looked horrible. Eddie Gilbert starts whining at ringside. Funk sorta kinda issues a challenge to Eddie, who leaves shortly thereafter. Funk praises ECWs hardcore fans and it's time for a commercial. IMO, the one redeeming factor of early-ECW was the Funk-Gilbert feud. It was booked very well, which isn't really surprising since Eddie was doing most of the writing at this time. 1.5/2


Hunter Q. Robbins III, manager of the ECW Tag-Team Champions, the Super Destroyers, tells Terry Funk to use respect when speaking to him. Terry decides to have a little word play, inserting "Turd" for "Third". Compelling stuff there. 1.5/3


It's time for our first (and hopefully only) music video. This one being clips of the Sandman wrestling in Memphis being played to Billy Joel's Big Shot. A few blink and you'll miss him clips of Lawler are thrown in there. Talk about gimmicks from hell...the Sandman used to actually be a Californian surfer dude. He would wrestle in surfing gear and bring his board with him to ringside. It's kind of weird seeing the guy who I usually relate with beer and cigarettes looking like a retarded pretty boy. Better days were on the horizon for Jim Fullington once Paul E. came aboard. 2/4


Here are the brackets for the ECW TV Title Tournament:


#1 Jimmy Snuka vs. #8 Larry Winters


#4 Tommy Cairo vs. #6 Sal Bellomo


#2 Eddie Gilbert vs. #7 J.T. Smith


#3 Glen Osbourne vs. #5 Johnny Hotbody


Hmmm…You may think you know what the final match is going to be, but don't bet you bottom dollar on it. 2/5


ECW TV Title Tournament- Round One: Tommy Cairo vs. Sal Bellomo (finish)

That's right, future USA Pro Wrestling Heavyweight Champion Tommy Cairo is in this one. Bellomo's manager (The Commander?) is on the ring apron distracting the ref. Meanwhile, Johnny Hotbody runs in. Bellomo holds Cairo in place for a Hotbody missile dropkick, but Cairo moves. Bellomo ends up on the floor from the dropkick and is counted out. (0:57) Afterwards, Hotbody jumps Cairo from behind. Hotbody misses an elbowdrop off the top and runs to the back. Cairo stays undefeated in ECW. No explanation is given as to why Hotbody interfered. 2/6


Rockin' Rebel w/Tigra vs. Tony Stetson

This is an interesting match in the sense that the Rebel was the #1 contender for the Sandman's ECW Heavyweight Title and Tony Stetson was 1/2 of the #1 contenders for the Super Destroyer's ECW Tag-Team Titles. Stetson with a couple armdrags and a hiptoss, which Rebel took a bad landing on. He landed on his head and neck. Stetson with a backbody drop and he drives a few knees to Rebel's arm. Whoa, I completely forgot Funk was commentating because this is the first time he spoke up all match. Rebel whips Stetson sternum first to the corner. He applies a reverse chinlock with a knee to the back. Rockin' Rebel with a flying back elbow and a sidewalk slam for 2. Rebel telegraphs a backbody drop, which gives Stetson the chance to come off the top with a legdrop for 2, as he gets his foot on the rope. Jay Sulli, "Rebel knows where he is at all times." Funk, "That's a very necessary thing...to know where you are." I think Funk can replace Tenay as the most intelligent commentator in wrestling. Rebel quickly covers with his feet on the rope for 3. (4:37) * Sulli interviews Rebel, who cuts a promo on the Sandman.


Jimmy Snuka comes down to the ring for his match with Larry Winters, but he has an announcement to make. Snuka introduces us to Eddie Gilbert. Gilbert goes on to say that Snuka is his first addition to Hot Stuff International. I guess Hot Stuff Inc. has gone worldwide. Gilbert says that Snuka will be the next ECW TV Champion, which is interesting seeing how Eddie is also in that tournament. The other interesting piece of this dynamic is that Snuka, the face, has aligned himself with Gilbert, the heel. 2.5/7


ECW TV Title Tournament- Round One: Jimmy Snuka w/Eddie Gilbert & Tigra vs. Larry Winters

Tigra is kind of like the official heel valet. She does nothing besides walk her man to the ring and hold his jacket. Winters is Stetson's partner and they make up the #1 contenders for the Tag-Titles. Funk is dumbfounded by the Snuka-Gilbert paring. He rants about Eddie. Snuka controls for most of the match with his usual deteriorated offense. He backbody drops Winters and then falls backwards himself. Sulli observes that Snuka looks demon-ick, not demonic. Gilbert slaps Winters around while the ref is reprimanding Snuka for choking. Winters mounts a comeback with a crossbody for 2. A dropkick and a legdrop also get 2. Gilbert gets on the apron as Winters hits a backbody drop. Gilbert is knocked to the floor. Gilbert retaliates by tripping Winters up. Snuka with a backbreaker and the Superfly Splash for 3. (4:31) DUD Snuka actually looked worse in 1993 than he did in his matches that I saw from 2001.


"Wildman" Sal Bellomo and his manager charge the ring as Funk and Sulli as closing up this inaugural episode of ECW TV. Bellomo gets in the ring and squashes some jobber in an unscheduled match. THIS IS EXTREME!! (0:18) DUD


Gordon and Funk hype next week's show, mentioning the other two first round matches and an appearance by the Sandman. 2.5/8


A video montage also hypes next week's show and shows more horrible clips of that movie Funk starred in. 2.5/9


April 13, 1993: ECW TV


Stevie Wonderful introduces Eddie Gilbert as this week's guest commentator. Jay Sulli brings out the real commentator along with another HORRID scene from Quantum Leap. Make it stop...Funk comes down to ringside. Gilbert starts yelling and refuses to leave, so Funk takes a bottle of water and pours it down Eddie's shirt. Eddie runs to the back screaming. I refuse to give this segment a full point because of that Quantum Leap shit. 3/10


ECW TV Title Tournament- Round One: Johnny Hotbody vs. Glen Osbourne JIP

We join with Hotbody in control. Osbourne is sent chest first to the corner. Hotbody follows up with a wicked german suplex for 2, as Osbourne's foot is on the rope. Osbourne is sent to the floor, where he is snap suplexed. Hotbody dives on to him from the apron. Back in, Hotbody applies a sleeper. Osbourne elbows out. He ducks a clothesline and Hotbody nails the ref. Hotbody connects with a low blow and a sweet piledriver. He didn't just fall back, but actually leaped up. I love that variation. Hotbody sets him up for a superplex, but Tommy Cairo runs out and knocks Hotbody to the mat, in retribution for Hotbody interfering in his own 1st Round match against Sal Bellomo. Osbourne wins it with a splash off the top. (3:58) Too bad the best match thus far had to be JIP. Hotbody looked pretty impressive. Judging by the matchlist, it looks like he'll be back in tag-team action towards the end of the tape. Terry Funk gets a few words from Glen Osbourne. 4/11


Terry Funk is interviewing Larry Winters & Tony Stetson after their win, but Hunter Q. Robbins III interrupts. Winters & Stetson put their hands on him, so his Tag-Team Champions, the Super Destroyers make the save. The two teams brawl into the crowd, while Funk holds back Robbins. Terry Funk is a great guy, but he really doesn't belong behind a mic. He is constantly stumbling over words and saying the wrong things. Maybe he'll get better as the tape progresses. 4.5/12


ECW TV Title Tournament- Round One: Eddie Gilbert w/Tigra vs. J.T. Smith

Gilbert quickly attacks with some punches. Smith is thrown to the floor. Gilbert hits an ultra-lame chairshot. We're talking worse than Lance Storm here. Gilbert connects with a clothesline and sends Smith facefirst to the table. They brawl to the back of the gymnasium. Gilbert steals the timekeeper's bell and clocks Smith with it. Funk starts yelling at Gilbert. J.T. once again goes to the table. Back in, J.T. scores with some punches in the corner and a fallaway slam. He misses a moonsault off the top. Even if Gilbert didn't move, Smith would have overshot him by a good five feet. Gilbert cheats with a thumb to the throat, but misses an elbowdrop. Gilbert, out of desperation, puts on the brass knux. J.T. ducks a punch and has Gilbert up for a belly-to-back suplex. Gilbert punches his way out and falls on top for 3. (4:32) 3/4* Decent for what it was, a cheap Memphis-style brawl. Jay Sulli alerts the ref as to what happen and is spat on by Gilbert. Whew! There is no Dusty Finish.


Semi-Final brackets.


#1 Jimmy Snuka vs. #4 Tommy Cairo


#5 Glen Osbourne vs. #2 Eddie Gilbert


So you think Hot Stuff International is gonna explode, eh? 4.5/13


Johnny Hotbody attacks Tommy Cairo right after a victory. They brawl to the back to end this week's episode. 4.5/14


April 20, 1993: ECW TV


For the third week in a row, Eddie Gilbert comes down as Terry Funk is being introduced, this time though he understands that he is not the guest commentator. Funk joins Sulli, Wonderful and Gilbert at ringside. Eddie actually apologizes to Funk for disrespecting him and walks to the back. Funk still isn't willing to turn his back to Gilbert. Until I saw this tape, I never really knew just how great of a performer Eddie Gilbert really was. 5.5/15


Funk is interviewing Hunter Q. Robbins III until Gilbert chairs Terry from behind. Haven't they learned by now NOT to give Gilbert a chair? He is an embarrassment to the ECW name. Gilbert continues to lay in some "shots" and he takes out a couple of refs. 6/16


ECW TV Title Tournament- Semi-Final: Jimmy Snuka w/Eddie Gilbert & Tigra vs. Tommy Cairo

Throughout the match, Gilbert joins the commentary team and impersonates Funk, who is receiving medical attention in the back. The match itself is very slow. Half of it is a Cairo side-headlock. During this boredom, Jay Sulli wonders why the ring is called the "squared circle". Snuka FINALLY escapes with a belly-to-back suplex. He dumps Cairo to the floor, where Gilbert gets a shot in. Back in, a piledriver gets 2. Cairo mounts a comeback with a back elbow for 2. Gilbert hops on the apron and holds Cairo in place. Snuka charges, but of course collides with Eddie. Cairo with a double noggin knocker, which some how results with the ref getting knocked out. Cairo has Snuka beat with a fisherman's suplex. Hotbody runs in and drops a pair of brass knux in the ring. Is that the only foreign object Gordon could afford? They have used the knux almost half a dozen times already. Cairo beats up Hotbody. Meanwhile, Snuka finds the knux and nails Cairo with them. Superfly Splash, as the ref awakens, puts him away. (5:20) 1/2* Sulli interviews Gilbert, who does his Funk impression for awhile. Compared to last week's Apter imitations, Gilbert is gold. Gilbert cuts a promo for Snuka and then one more on Funk.


ECW TV Title Tournament- Semi-Final: Glen Osbourne w/Peaches vs. Eddie Gilbert w/Tigra JIP

Osbourne is the most over face thus far, save Funk. We see some of the pre-match antics, which include Gilbert trying to convince Osbourne to just forfeit the match. "Take your 20 kids, your old lady, your 2 or 3 ex-wives and just go home." OK, now we JIP. Osbourne is thrown to the floor. Gilbert brings a table into the match. In the ring, Osbourne powers out of a reverse chinlock. Both men are down. Osbourne with a backbody drop and the 10 punch in the corner. Gilbert pulls out the brass knux and that's the end of it. (4:38) Jay Sulli alerts the ref to this miscarriage of justice. The ref pulls the knux out of Gilbert's tights and reverses the decision. I'm surprised it took an hour and 15 minutes before we first see the Dusty Finish on this tape. Gilbert gets in Sulli's face, but Funk makes the save with a few chairshots. Even Funk is barely making contact with a chair. What gives? Either way, good segment on a whole. 7/17


Sulli talks to Peaches about her kissing the Sandman last week. She goes on and on about how muscular and cute the Sandman is. She must be thinking of someone else. 7/18


Sulli is now with the Rockin' Rebel, who calls out Peaches. He forces himself on to her, demanding that she kiss him. She refuses and slaps him across the face. 7.5/19


Rockin' Rebel w/Tigra vs. ???

Some jobber had been standing in the ring this whole time, so after being slapped Rebel attacks him and we have ourselves an Impromptu match. Finally, some shades of the real ECW. Rebel squashes and pins the jobber with one foot. (0:25) DUD Peaches still hasn't made it to the back. Rebel runs after her and takes her by the hair to the ring. The Sandman (in GHEY surfer get-up) runs out to no reaction, but Tigra gouges his eyes. The Rebel breaks the STYROFOAM SURFBOARD over our Champion's head. UNBELIEVABLE!! THIS CANNOT BE HAPPENING!! THIS IS EXTREME!! Yeah. A whole bunch of faces or jobbers (does it really matter?) chase Rebel out of the ring.


ECW TV Title Tournament- Final: Jimmy Snuka w/Eddie Gilbert vs. Glen Osbourne finish

We join as Osbourne is covering for 2. Gilbert jumps up on the apron. Osbourne whips Snuka into John Finnegan (the ref), who in turn knocks Gilbert to the floor. Osbourne with a small package, but Gilbert breaks it up. Snuka hits the backbreaker and the Superfly Splash to win the vacant TV Title. (1:01) I don't get why they didn't put Osbourne over. The last three weeks of TV were all from the same taping, so why not have your most popular wrestler win a one-night tournament? That way all the fans are sent home happy and come back for the next TV taping. 7.5/20


Stevie Wonderful is in the locker room looking to get a word from Terry Funk, but it turns out Funk is lurking around elsewhere. Instead Stevie knocks on the Sandman's dressing room door. Peaches pops out to reveal the Sandman may have suffered a slight concussion. I had no idea styrofoam could cause such serious injuries. Unless you actually ingest it, in which case your internal injuries would probably be rather severe. Oh yeah, next week we see the introduction of the "Magnificent" Muraco fresh off his run in the UWF. I think I have just shit myself.


Be right back....





.... OK, I'm good now. 7.5/21


April 27, 1993: ECW TV


Just as a reference point, this is the first show from ECW's second TV taping. Eddie Gilbert is officially our guest host this week. Reason being, Eddie beat Terry Funk in an I Quit match at some ECW house show. Eddie rolls the footage. Funk gets his head "rammed", and I use that term loosely, into a table numerous times. He and Gilbert enter the ring. ECW SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT: DUE TO THE GRAPHIC NATURE OF THIS FOOTAGE THE CENSORS WOULD NOT ALLOW US TO AIR IT. REST ASSURED, TERRY FUNK IS STILL IN ECW AND WILL TELL US HIS THOUGHTS NEXT WEEK. Umm, that was odd. 8/22


Hunter Q. Robbins III is backstage with the Super Destroyers. Robbins put $500 down on the Destroyer's match against Winters & Stetson. Hunter's pulling out the big bucks I see. Robbins also makes a horrible manager because he has NO CHARISMA. Why not just let the two fat oafs standing behind him cut the promo? It could be considered a cost-cutting procedure. 8/23


ECW Tag-Team Titles- $500 Challenge: The Super Destroyers w/Hunter Q. Robbins III vs. Tony Stetson & Larry Winters

WHY? WHY? WHY do the Super Destroyers need to have the SAME EXACT OUTFITS? Besides this really thin armband that is different on each guy, they are identical. As far as I'm concerned, #1 has the black armband WITH studs, whereas #2 has the red armband. #1 and Winters do a little criss-cross. Winters with a facebuster and a legdrop for 2. #2 tags, but is quickly rolled up for 2. Stetson gets the tag. Double hiptoss is followed up by a double elbowdrop. Stetson works the arm. #2 with a gouge and #1 tags. Stetson gets some more hiptosses until some sweet chin music from #1. That was unexpected. #2 tags. A clothesline and elbowdrop get 2. #1 is back with an axehandle from the 2nd rope. He drops a headbutt to the groin. #2 tags, works in the corner. Back to #1. Double back elbow gets 2. #1 applies a half crab into a cloverleaf variation. Winters gets the semi-hot tag. He hits a backbody drop and a kneelift. Winters puts on the Figure-Four. #1 breaks it up with Robbins' cane, which is grounds for a DQ. (4:36) *1/2 The faces clean house. Surprisingly decent match.


Gilbert is in the ring before an upcoming Bellomo-Osbourne match. Gilbert and Osbourne shove each other. Jimmy Snuka and the newest member of Hot Stuff Int'l, Don Muraco, stroll out to the ring. The trio cuts a promo. Now that's a faction you don't want to mess with; two soon-to-be senior citizens and a guy who will be dead in less than two years. E-C-W!! E-C-W!! 8/24


The Suicide Blonds (Christopher Candido & Jonathan Hotbody) introduce themselves, as they comprise ECW's first ever FLAMBOYANT TAG-TEAM!! This second TV taping sucks thus far storyline-wise. 8/25


The Suicide Blonds vs. J.T. Smith & Tommy Cairo

Incase you forgot, Cairo and Hotbody have issues stemming from the TV Title Tournament. Cairo starts by fending off both of the Blonds. And let the resting begin...Cairo with a side-headlock. Candido breaks it up. Blonds with a double clothesline and a double switch. Candido applies a chinlock. Cairo powers out, but Hotbody runs in to put an end to that. Candido back to the chinlock. He finally releases and misses a dropkick. Smith and Hotbody are in. Smith goes to work in the corner. Hotbody hits a lowblow and some shoulders in the corner. Candido and Cairo fight in the ring. J.T. whips Hotbody into Candido, who was sitting in the corner. The faces with a double hiptoss on Hotbody. Candido is sent into Johnny. The Blonds catch a breather on the floor. Back in, Candido hits a suplex for 2. Smith and Cairo take turns working the arm for a while. Hotbody tries to make a save, but ends up getting a backbody drop courtesy of Cairo. Cairo clears the ring. Candido throws Cairo to the floor. Hotbody drops an elbow from the apron. I think that has to be the most extreme moment thus far on the tape. Candido with a gutwrench suplex. Cairo turns the tides with a belly-to-back suplex. Smith and Hotbody tag in. J.T. dropkicks Johnny to the floor. Candido slams Smith and misses a double stomp off the top. Smith regroups and hits a moonsault. Hotbody breaks up the pin with a forearm from the top. Candido covers for the win. (8:03) **1/2 Solid match. Although I can't go any higher than that because the resting was excessive at times and Candido made a few mistakes.


ECW Heavyweight Title: The Sandman w/Peaches vs. Rockin' Rebel w/Tigra JIP

We join as the Sandman fights out of a side-headlock with a slam. The Sandman goes to work on the arm. Rebel comesback with a couple of clotheslines. Tigra gouges at the Sandman's eyes. Rebel hits a sidewalk slam. The Sandman attempts a comeback, but fails. Rebel gets 2 off a legdrop. Tigra once again gets involved with some choking and gouging. The Sandman with an inside cradle for 2. Rebel connects with a jawbreaker. Rebel charges into a knee to the groin. The Sandman hits a facebuster. He follows that up with a LAME dropkick off the top. Tigra jumps on the Sandman's back for a DQ. Peaches runs in and we have ourselves a CATFIGHT!! CATFIGHT!! The Sandman swings his belt, but the Rebel ducks. The heels hightail to the back. 8.5/25


Jay Sulli is with Hunter Q. Robbins III. They discuss Tod Gordon announcing that next week there will be a rematch between The Super Destroyers and Winters/Stetson for the belts. Hunter reiterates that this will be Stetson & Winters’ last shot at the titles. 8.5/26


Roll credits.




The amazing thing about this tape is that it shows you just how horrible ECW was before Paul Heyman took control. Considering that this shitcan of a promotion would actually go on to have PPVs is unimaginable. Even on that basis, I can't really recommend this tape. Besides the Funk-Gilbert stuff, IT SUCKS! Instead, go buy that SMW tape I reviewed last week. Both of those tapes are available at Wrestling Power.


Confidential will be up later tonight, unless this tropical storm knocks out my power.


Retro Rob

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