By Josh Molina, WrestlingObserver.com
– Airdate: Jan 24, 1985
– Run time: 43:38
– Stars of the show: Ken Patera, “Big” John Studd, Bobby Heenan, Jesse “The Body” Ventura
– Line of the night: “What is that on your chin? It looks like herpes simplex?”– Jesse “The Body” Ventura
We all know about “The Attitude Era.” We’re experts on Hulkamania and Ric Flair’s incredible string of matches in the late 1980s. We know about John Cena decade on top and the thrilling Monday Night Wars. But, we may not be aware of an era that is at least equally entertaining, and possibly more pivotal, than the the Tuesday Night Titans era.
Hosted by Vince McMahon, along with sidekick Lord Alfred Hayes, this late-night talk show parody seems to surprise and offend every week, a significant accomplishment, considering we’re talking about the WWF.The show every week is rich with one-liners, insults, and double entendres, the likes of which only a professional wrestling fan could appreciate.
This week’s show is again a shortened version, down from two to one hour. The guests this week are members of Bobby “The Brain” Heenan’s first WWF wrestling stable, Ken Patera and Big John Studd. Now, Studd has been running around like a brat the last several months sulking over the fact that Andre The Giant is regarded as the giant of professional wresting, and not him. Studd never realized how stupid he sounded considering that Andre was a couple inches taller then him and at least 50 pounds heavier during this era.
Hey Studd: You are not the giant of wrestling. That’s someone else’s gimmick. So since Studd couldn’t grow anymore, or move around the ring comfortably with bigger lifts in his shows, I guess he decided to team up with Patera and cut Andre’s hair.
They also chose to insult his manhood and refer to Andre as “Andrea.” This was one of the more iconic moments in mid-1980s WWF wrestling. Patera held Andre during a Championship Wrestling episode while Studd cut his hair. This of course was hugely embarrassing to Andre, whose puffy top was part of his menacing giant lore.
They cut his hair in a tag team bout featuring Studd and Patera against Andre and SD Jones. Wait, SD Jones? You mean to tell me the best tag team partner Andre could get was a guy whose most memorable trait was the hole in his back?
You knew the fix was in when Andre teamed up with Jones because only a total goober like Jones would let something like this happen to Andre. They didn’t show the whole match, just the aftermath with Andre laid out on his back while, with Jones writhing in pain alongside him.
Patera, Studd and Jones scampered to the back carrying locks of Andre’s hair. Andre awoke and Jones tried to explain to him what happened by signaling a pair of scissors to Andre’s hair. Andre looked at the hair all over the ring as though it were his blood and ran out of the ring toward the back, embarrassed that a significant part of his scary giant gimmick had just been stripped away.
McMahon displayed his excellent microphone skills during haircut. “We are looking at the raping of a giant’s dignity,” McMahon said. The hair job is just a set-up for TNT guests Patera, Studd and Heenan, who missed his calling as a stand-up comedian.
“Andre can go back to hanging out in the hills making cheese or playing with his goats, or whatever he does out there,” Heenan says.
Heenan does most of the talking, saying that when he entered the World Wrestling Federation, he decided he was going to “make some noise.”
Heenan then addressed what everyone was thinking when they saw SD Jones with Andre: “He associates himself with losers.” McMahon wants to know why it’s OK for Patera and Studd to double-team Andre, and why Studd doesn’t take on Andre one-on-one. Heenan’s response is golden: This is a 500-pound man who is three-and-half-times bigger than most men and no one complained when he dropped his big carcass on top of them.
McMahon let’s it go, but then asks Heenan if he would ever wrestle Andre. “I don’t want to soil my hands on the likes of Andre the Giant,” Heenan said. “I get more satisfaction out of manipulating minds.”
Even though the cutting of Andre’s hair was supposedly one of the biggest injustices and outrages since the Jamestown Massacre, McMahon declares that “Coming Up, Next” Heenan will demonstrate his hair-cutting skills on a member of the audience.
The volunteer from the audience looks like came from wherever Hillbilly Jim came from, with long, greasy hair and a droopy beard. Heenan insists that he taught “Jober” in Beverly Hills how to cut hair. McMahon responds “Jober?” Heenan obviously intentionally mangled “Jose Eber,” but it doesn’t matter. Heenan’s ability to act like he taught the experts is comedy heaven.
The haircut starts innocently, until Studd wraps a rope around the volunteer to restrain him. Heenan quips that the rope looks like dental floss for Leon Spinks, referring to the former heavyweight champion of the world who upset Muhammad Ali to win the title. Spinks was also know for happing a gap in his teeth.
Heenan promised that the volunteer would be on the cover of Vogue next month.
The hair cut quickly deteriorates from a joke to something bordering uncomfortable when Patera and Studd start spraying water and aftershave all over the volunteer and essentially shave the man bald and chop the beard. The actor the got for this role did a terribly job of selling. Like if you were really getting assaulted by three men while strapped into a chair, methinks you would probably act a little more outraged.
Patera, who was one of the most unlikable characters of this era, says “you might see a little blood here.” McMahon, the master of the false outrage then says, “look at this poor man. He’ll never volunteer for anything again. This is without a doubt the worse hair cut in the world.” The guy finally escapes and runs off the set.
Next up we go to “the hills of Kentucky with Hillbilly Jim and his grandmother.” Before then, McMahon, master of the gross exaggeration, calls Jim, “one of the extraordinary athletes entering the World Wrestling Federation.”
Jim at his home talking to his his “granny” in a wheelchair. This is high-stereotype here. After some incoherent banter, Jim moves to the kitchen where he shows off a few elbow and knee drops to the soiled (yes, soiled) mattress. Jim’s Dug then enters and Jim wraps his leg around him and attempts to wrestle the dog, until Granny returns and yells at Jim to stop hurting his dog.
Hayes states the obvious back in the studio when he says, “They are very special people.” What goes through McMahon’s mind to come up with some of this stuff? He has a remarkable ability to bring the worst stereotypes to life.
Next is Paul Vachon, who’s going to update us on the status of his wedding. Vachon married Ophelia a month ago on TNT, but apparently the honeymoon isn’t going well. Vachon said he wanted to take his bride on a honeymoon to Africa or Canada, but instead she only wanted to visit Hoboken, New Jersey.
“I thought a honeymoon was supposed to be like heaven, but it is more like a nightmare,”
McMahon must have hated the Vachon’s or this kind of angle was the most Pat Patterson could get McMahon to buy into. Either way, Vachon looks like a fool for about four consecutive episode. Despite the wedding blues, Vachon reaffirms that weddings are “for better or worse.”
The final guest is a repackaged Jesse “The Body” Ventura, who apparently is transitioning into announcing. Ventura has turned up the “Superstar” Billy Graham gimmick several notches, with headdress, glasses, chin indentation and colorful garb.
McMahon takes us to a segment that he calls “Prime Time” on the USA Network, hosted by Jack Reynolds and Ventura, which aired on Tuesday Nights.. I guess this was the precursor for Primetime Wrestling. It’s also why TNT was moved to Friday nights temporarily. This version of Prime Time did not last very long, however, because TNT would return to Tuesday Nights eventually.
Ventura is boasting that “Wendi Richter goes out of her way to get booked and defend her title on shows that I appear.” Reynolds responds that she doesn’t even know who he is. Ventura says, “She comes and rubs sweat on my body.”
Even though Ventura is transitioning into announcing, we get to see him in the ring again against Steve Lombardi. Ventura holds him in a wrist lock before pinning him with a jumping elbow. Ventura joins McMahon and Hayes on the set where Hayes remarks that Ventura’s cleft chin looks “ridiculous.” Ventura responds that his accent is ridiculous. Hayes says, “Your hat is stupid.”
Ventura, surprised by Hayes’ jabs, turns to McMahon and says “you are going to need a new co-host.” This is really odd because Hayes is supposed to be the dignified sidekick, but apparently not when it comes to Ventura.
After the break Ventura has something else to say to Hayes. He apparently forgot his line the first time, or thought of something to say during the commercial. He looks at Hayes and says “you were just talking about my face, but what is that on your chin? It looks like herpes simplex.”
Hayes responds “You are a nasty individual. It is just a cold sore.” Nothing like Ventura taking TNT to the world of sexually transmitted diseases.