Chris' Blog


WWF Andre the Giant

I’m really burning through these tapes, which shows how good they are. I can’t stop enjoying these classic shows, they’re just so fun. Although I think the match quality on this tape is going to be bad. It’s Andre th Giant, never known for mat classic, but should be still be a fun tape. This is the second tape dedicated to just one person, the previous being Hulk-a-Mania, and they picked a legend for this one. Andre the Giant was one of the most famous wrestlers of the era, and a true superstar. The box shows Andre squashing someone in the corner and advertises the famous haircut match, a match with Ken Patera and a three on one handicap, plus a boxing match with Gorilla Monsoon. Should be interesting, so let’s get the tape rolling.

This tape actually clocks in at ninety-five minutes, and of course opens with the usual video and we get highlights of a tag match with Lord Alfred Hayes doing the voice over. Over to the Video Control Studio, and Alfred tells a story of meeting a young Andre the Giant before his debut before sending it to the first match.

1. Andre the Giant v. Moondog Rex

Moondog Rex is the former tag team champion, later jobber to the stars. This is from the Philadelphia Spectrum, an Andre quickly hammers the Moondog down. Andre destroys Moondog as Alfred does a biography on Andre, talking about his watch, farm and drinking abilities. It’s been all Andre so far, as Moondog eats a big boot then the splash scores the easy win. Just a quick squash match, as Andre crushed Moondog with ease.

1. Andre the Giant squashed Moondog Rex DUD

2. 18 Man Battle Royal

We get the list of wrestlers in the match, Sgt Slaughter, Adrian Adonis, Dick Murdoch, Big John Studd, Superfly Snuka, Andre the Giant, Pat Patterson, Hulk Hogan, Sal Bellomo, Paul Orndorff, Tiger Chung Lee, Iron Sheik, Alexis Smirnoff, Mil Mascaras and Tito Santana. Only name I don’t recognize is Smirnoff, unless you count the vodka, but otherwise a who’s who of the WWF in 1984. Three names not listed were the Hangman, Victor Rivera and Les Thornton, so I guess they’re not winning. Sal goes out, according to Gorilla Monsoon, as Tiger and Paul hammer on Patterson. Andre and Studd slugging it out in the corner, and Studd bails out, but not eliminated. Hulk and Slaughter working together on Sheik and Paul, as Alfred puts over the Hangman as being a threat. Sheik out through the middle ropes and Slaughter stupidly dives over the top on him, and eliminates himself, as the Sheik outsmarted him. I wish they’d make a four DVD set of battle royals, not the Rumbles, but just battle royals, I love watching these matches. Snuka eliminated, but we didn’t see it, so no idea how. Tito gets backdropped out by Paul Orndorff, as Adonis and Murdoch work over the Giant. Hulk and Studd fighting on the floor, as Hulk is such a role model for kids. Mil and Paul go out, as we again don’t see it, and Sheik almost lands on Paul, the camera work is atrocious as we keep missing things. Glad that’s something they’ve improved over the years, as Studd out by Hogan, and then pulls out the Hulkster with help from Tiger Chung Lee and Adrian Adonis. Gorilla is surprised Alexis is still in there, as am I. Hulk and Studd back in the ring and fighting, but both are eliminated and the refs force them backstage. Final Four are Andre the Giant, Adrian, Murdoch and Smirnoff, bet we know how this is going to go. All three heels work over the Giant, but are unable to lift the massive Andre. They back him into the ropes and Andre fights free and tosses Alexis and Dick right away. Adrian whipped into the corner and up and over the ropes to the concrete, as Andre wins the Battle Royal.

2. Andre the Giant wins an 18 Man Battle Royal 7/10

3. Andre the Giant v. Black Gordman & Great Goliath

This won’t take long, as Alfred point out the front row is empty because Andre has a habit of tossing opponents over the top rope. Gordman and Goliath are both wearing Red, well at least they have some unity as Andre works over both guys with ease. This has been all Andre, basically an extended squash match. They try to work over the legs of Andre, but to no avail as Andre comes back and now they try to use a weapon of some sort to take down Andre. Andre comes back with a double submission on both guys, as the announcer calls these guys two of the best in the world, as Andre double monkey flips both guys. Andre tosses Gordman onto Goliath and sits on both guys for the win. Went too long for what it was, but nice to see some agility from the Giant.

3. Andre the Giant defeated Black Gordman & Great Goliath 3/10

4. Andre the Giant v. Jack Evans, Johnny Rodz & Joe Butcher Nova

Great, another handicap match as now Andre faces three guys this time. Unlike the last match all three guys are in the ring at the same time with Andre, no tagging needed. No matter to Andre as he sets all three in the corner and squashes them. Andre again does the double submission and double monkey flip. With Andre on the mat all three guys pile on Andre who throws them off with ease. Andre just tossing the three guys around like rag dolls, and headbutts Evans out of the ring. Andre sends the other two into each other then piles them up before sitting on all three for the easy win. Another glorified squash match, as Andre handled all three guys with ease.

4. Andre the Giant pinned Jack Evans, Johnny Rodz & Butcher Nova 3/10

5. Andre the Giant v. Gorilla Monsoon in a boxing match

Alfred mentions that Gorilla has boxed Andre and wrestled Muhammad Ali, which we saw on Best of WWF Volume 1, as Gorilla looks fired up for this. Not a fan of boxing, so this is really not my thing, it’s right up there with the MMA junk. There just slugging it out, and Gorilla getting the worst of it. The only thing holding up Gorilla is the ropes. Second round and Gorilla suddenly unloads on the Giant, knocking him down in the corner, and Gorilla is pleased with himself. I can’t get over how fast Monsoon is, considering him size, but Andre catches him with a headbutt and drops the ass down across Monsoon. Gorilla pulls himself up and Andre clobbers him down again, Gorilla staggers to his feet. Gorilla covers up, as the round ends. Third round and Monsoon starts to come back, and hammers Andre on the ropes. Alfred on commentary is laughing so hard, as Andre catches Gorilla with a right hand and Monsoon is out, Andre wins via KO. Andre walks over Gorilla after the win, and we clip to them fighting again outside the ring. Andre knocks Monsoon out in a puddle, as Alfred is hysterical at this point.

5. Andre the Giant defeated Gorilla Monsoon in a boxing match NO RATING

6. Andre the Giant & Jimmy Snuka v. Afa & Sika

Before the match we get comments from Snuka and Andre, with a very young looking Vince holding the microphone. Early on Snuka gets double teamed by the Samoans, and Andre tries to make save but the ref forces him back to the corner. Snuka finally comes back, but the Samoans again double team Snuka and score a near fall. It’s odd with Gorilla and Vince on commentary, as Snuka collides with Afa and this gives him the chance to tag in Andre, but Afa cuts him before hand. It’s pretty much been all Samoans so far, as Snuka plays Ricky Morton tonight taking a massive beating. Andre again comes in illegally and the ref forces him back, as Snuka blocks a double team and Andre finally tagged in. The crowd explodes as Andre unloads on both Samoans, including the classic stack in the corner double shoulderblock. Andre shoots the Samoans into each other and is just clobbering both men, as Snuka is still down in the corner. Andre headbutts the Samoan, but stuns himself and Sika comes in. Andre hits the big boot on Sika, as Afa staggers up the aisle, Snuka dives off the shoulders of Andre for the win. A pretty good match, as Snuka played face in peril and Andre batted cleanup, which kept it at a good pace.

6. Andre the Giant & Jimmy Snuka defeated Afa & Sika 6.5/10

7. The Masked Superstar v. Andre the Giant

Masked Superstar was Bill Eadie, later known as Ax of Demolition, as Andre overpowers the masked man right out of the gate. Pat Patterson and Gorilla Monsoon on commentary talk about how awesome Andre is, and he truly was a one of a kind. Superstar has no idea what to do at this point, as a shoulderblock hurt him and then Andre stands on his fingers. Andre goes after Superstar’s mask, and Superstar quickly bails out of the ring as we get a clip of Andre palming Alfred’s face from TNT. Superstar off the ropes and runs into Andre’s ass, Andre then walks over top of Superstar, who quickly bails out of the ring. Superstar finally gets an advantage and clobbers the Giant, sending Andre to the corner and Andre crumples to the mat. Superstar quickly pounds on the Giant on the mat and goes for a Cobra Clutch type move, but Andre reaches for the mask and Superstar breaks the hold. Andre fights his way up and headbutts Superstar twice. Andre tosses Superstar in and hits the big boot then the butt drop for the win. After the match Andre goes for the mask again, and Superstar gets away. A very good match actually, better then I expected as Superstar put up a great battle with the Giant.

7. Andre the Giant pinned the Masked Superstar 7/10

8. Andre the Giant & SD Jones v. Big John Studd & Ken Patera

This is another match where if you know you’re WWF history you will recognize this match as it’s known as the haircut match and is a huge piece of WWF history. SD starts out with Patera, as Bobby Heenan looks on, and SD controls Patera before tagging in Andre. It’s sad that three out of four of these men are gone, Patera being the only one still alive today. SD back in the ring with Studd, and Studd works over SD as the Heenan Family double teams SD. SD comes back with a headbutt and tags in Andre as Patera backdrops SD to the floor, knocking SD out cold. Andre clobbers Patera in the corner, but Patera gets a knee up and Studd comes in for the double team. A double slam takes down the Giant, as they continue to tear apart the giant and the ref finally calls for the bell. The Heenan Family doesn’t care, as they beat down Andre and Heenan comes in with scissors as they cut the massive afro of Andre. The garbage is being tossed in the ring as Andre gets his hair cut, and Vince says they’re raping his dignity. Heenan walks around with the handfuls of hair, as the Heenan Family is proud of their work.

8. Andre the Giant & SD Jones beat Big John Studd & Ken Patera by DQ 6/10

We get a clip from TNT of Andre, with his new hairdo. Andre says he’s almost five hundred pounds as Vince asks about his mobility and asks about Studd. I have a hard time understanding Andre most of the time, as Vince mentions the upcoming match at Wrestlemania with Studd, and sends it to the Ken Patera v. Andre match.

9. Andre the Giant v. Ken Patera

This is billed as the revenge match after the previous haircut incident. Andre starts out quickly pounding on Patera, who bails out to confer with manager Bobby Heenan. Patera continues to try and stall, and Andre waits patiently for Patera to get back in. Andre continues where he left off and Patera again bails out, so Andre stands on Bobby’s hands, and the crowd is eating it up. Patera finally back in and again Andre destroys him, choking the Olympian with his own straps. Patera rolls out of the ring again, and Heenan is having a fit at ringside. Patera finally gets back in the ring and tries to back off from the monster but Andre doesn’t care and chokes Patera in the corner. Patera unable to get anything to work here tonight, as Andre is just destroying the man including an Atomic Drop to the floor. Andre grabs Patera by the hair and throws him back in the ring. Andre hits the big boot and Patera rolls to the apron, but Andre catches him and clobbers Patera across the chest then sits on him. Andre follows that up by standing on the chest of Patera, and Patera outside again. Andre follows this time and whips Patera into the guard rail, as Heenan quickly goes to check on his man. Andre rolls back in and Heenan climbs the ropes as Andre argues with the ref. Heenan knocks down Andre and the ref, then pulls out brass knuckles and clobbers Andre. Patera dives off the ropes and Andre gets a foot up, then sets Heenan and Patera in the corner and squashes them. Patera tossed across the ring and then paintbrushes Heenan. Andre throws out both men as the ref raises Andre’s hand, as Patera has been disqualified. Not a bad match, but lots of stalling, however the end was fun. No one took a beating like Heenan did.

9. Andre the Giant defeated Ken Patera by DQ 6/10

Back to the TNT interview as Vince hypes up Wrestlemania and talks about Studd gaining weight. Vince mentions that Heenan has put up fifteen thousand dollars and asks what is Andre putting up. Vince keeps poking the bear, telling Andre that Heenan wants Andre to put up his career if he can’t slam Studd. Vince asks Andre if he has a yellow streak not putting anything up, and Andre has had enough as he lifts up Vince by the tie and says he will put up his career.

Now we get the interview from Wrestlemania with Big John Studd and Bobby Heenan. Studd says tonight he will prove he is the true giant of wrestling and Heenan says for fifteen thousand dollars and a haircut they will get rid of Andre.

10. Andre the Giant v. Big John Studd in the $15,000 Bodyslam Challenge

This is of course from Wrestlemania, and was one of the featured matches. Andre starts out quick with the chops and headbutts, Studd bails out to slow down Andre’s offense. Studd rolls back in and Andre back in control with a choke and the classic Andre corner squash. Studd gets a low shot in and goes for a slam, but Andre block and slaps on the bear hug. The crowd starts a chant of ‘slam’, as Andre squeezes the life out of Studd. Andre has full control of Studd as Heenan looks on, Heenan screams at Studd to get him. Andre with a series of headbutt on Studd and goes for the backdrop, but Studd catches him, however Andre catches the leg of Studd and pops him. Studd cowers in the corner and Andre unloads with kicks and scoops and slams Studd in the center of the ring for the win. Andre collects his money and starts tossing it out to the crowd, Heenan quickly in the ring and grabs the back and runs to the back. The match wasn’t great, but the historical value and the crowd make up for it. Would’ve like Studd to get a little offense in there, but it accomplished the goal.

10. Andre the Giant slammed Big John Studd to win the challenge 5/10

MATCH RECAP:

1. Andre the Giant squashed Moondog Rex on August 1, 1981 from Philadelphia, PA DUD

2. Andre the Giant wins an 18 Man Battle Royal on April 30, 1984 from Oakland, CA 7/10

3. Andre the Giant defeated Black Gordman & Great Goliath on January 12, 1976 from Los Angeles, CA 3/10

4. Andre the Giant pinned Jack Evans, Johnny Rodz & Butcher Nova from 1975 in Philadelphia, PA 3/10

5. Andre the Giant defeated Gorilla Monsoon in a boxing match on September 23, 1977 from San Juan, PR NO RATING

6. Andre the Giant & Jimmy Snuka defeated Afa & Sika on February 18, 1983 from New York, NY 6.5/10

7. Andre the Giant pinned the Masked Superstar on February 20, 1984 from New York, NY 7/10

8. Andre the Giant & SD Jones beat Big John Studd & Ken Patera by DQ on November 13, 1984 from Poughkeepsie, NY 6/10

9. Andre the Giant defeated Ken Patera by DQ on January 21, 1985 from New York, NY 6/10

10. Andre the Giant slammed Big John Studd to win the challenge on March 31, 1985 from New York, NY 5/10

If you’re looking for great matches, look elsewhere, but if you want to see Andre before he became broken down this is probably the best place. The matches may not be considered technical marvels, but Andre could bring it when needed and was such a true phenomenon of the business. The best match was the battle with Masked Superstar, a highly underrated athlete, and the boxing match was a nice little oddity. All in all this was another fun filled tape with some great historical moments, cumulating in the legendary Body Slam Challenge from Wrestlemania. Coming up next is the Best of the WWF Volume 2.

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