What the World Was Watching: WWF Prime Time Wrestling – April 2, 1990
By LScisco on 7th July 2021
Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan are manning the studio. Monsoon announces that the Ultimate Warrior is the new WWF Champion, and adds that Hulkamania has now achieved immortality. Heenan challenges the Warrior to put the title on the line against an undetermined member of the Heenan Family.
Opening Contest: Hillbilly Jim beats Black Bart after a big boot at 5:03:
Jim was trained by Bob Orton, Sr. and wrestled his first match in 1975. He came to the WWF in 1984 after a stint in Memphis and was booked as a buddy of Hulk Hogan, serving as a proxy for Hogan’s feud with Roddy Piper. After 1988, Jim started to get phased out as a wrestler, doing commentary for some televised house show cards, serving as a goodwill ambassador for the company at community functions, and substituting on house shows when other wrestlers did not appear.
The crowd is a big fan of Jim, clapping along to his entrance and popping for ring announcer Howard Finkel getting in on the act. It is a reminder of how he is an overlooked part of the WWF’s Golden Age. There is not a lot of action as each big man throws a few bombs on the other before Bart runs into a big boot in the corner on a blind charge. More of a long squash for Jim than a match, so this one is not worth rating.
Heenan claims that thirty-one friends called him and said that the WrestleMania tickets Monsoon gave them were for WrestleMania IV. Monsoon shrugs and says Heenan wanted tickets for WrestleMania and that is what he got.
A recap of Rhythm & Blues beating up the Bushwhackers two weeks ago on Superstars is shown. Monsoon assures fans that the Bushwhackers are recovering. Heenan says little damage was done because the Bushwhackers were dumb before they got hit in the head with a guitar.
The Orient Express (w/Mr. Fuji) (4-0) defeat Paul Roma & Omar Atlas when Sato pins Atlas after a Tanaka assisted flying chop at 3:17:
In the split screen, Fuji says that the Express will destroy the Rockers in the future. Roma looks less than thrilled to be teaming with Atlas, foreshadowing a possible turn. That continues when he gets a small shine on Tanaka and then quickly tags a damaged Atlas back into the match. Sato flattens Atlas with a sit out powerbomb and pins him after Tanaka comes off the top rope with a flying chop. This time, Sato manages to raise Atlas on his back rather than going into a backslide position.
Heenan says that someone can do two things after a divorce: sit and weep about it or get up and find a new lady. He promises to do the latter. Monsoon does not provide context about why Heenan is talking about a split in the Heenan Family. After the commercial break, Heenan refuses to disclose the terms that he agreed to with Slick for the Barbarian.
The Warlord (w/Slick) pins Ricki Ataki after a running powerslam at 2:35:
Like the Barbarian, the Warlord has not updated his look since leaving the Powers of Pain. Ataki does a good job selling the Warlord’s power offense as Slick hypes the Warlord’s physical attributes in an insert promo. The squash starts to wear out its welcome after two minutes, but the Warlord brings things home shortly thereafter with a nice looking running powerslam.
Monsoon says highlights of WrestleMania VI will air on next week’s show. Heenan tells fans that they would already know what happened if they were not deadbeats and went to Skydome.
Sean Mooney cues up a new round of promos. Hacksaw Jim Duggan says he does not do fancy moves but goes into the ring, waits for the bell, and uses his big hands to blast opponents. Tugboat sings a song about how he will be by sea. He says when he was a child his parents took him to the seashore, and he wanted to grow up and be a tugboat and wrestle in the WWF. So Tugboat has a delusional disorder where he thinks he is an actual boat?
Rick Rude (w/Bobby Heenan) (7-1-1) pins Pez Whatley after the Rude Awakening at 2:52:
Rude defeated Whatley a month ago on Wrestling Challenge so Whatley tries to redeem himself here. Whatley lasts longer than his previous encounter and manages to put Rude on the defensive by pinballing him between the buckles and doing an atomic drop. However, Rude catches the jobber with a knee and quickly hits his finisher, causing Whatley to go into convulsions. After the match, Rude plants a kiss on a local woman.
Monsoon says he was impressed by Rude’s last match even though Rude hit only two offensive moves to prevail. He wonders if Rude will want to leave the Heenan Family, causing a panicked Heenan to ask if he has heard rumors of people looking to leave him.
A Tito Santana-Boris Zhukov match that aired on the November 27 edition of Prime Time Wrestling is replayed. Zhukov was substituting for Barry Windham in a match airing from Madison Square Garden. Santana won it with a flying forearm out of nowhere.
Heenan remains avoidant about what happened to him at Skydome, preferring to discuss his latest plans to go on a cruise.
Mooney kicks the broadcast to new promos. Akeem and Slick say they have their focus set on winning a championship before the end of 1990. Jimmy Snuka gives a non-sensical promo to the “people in TV wonderland” about how his mind is pure and he wants to share it.
As Heenan tries to talk over him, Monsoon tells fans that Demolition won the WWF Tag Team Championship for the third time at WrestleMania. Heenan then tries to get Monsoon to take a phone call on the banana phone so he will not talk more about the title change.
The Hart Foundation (6-0) defeat Mark Ming & Buddy Rose when Bret Hart pins Ming after the Hart Attack at 3:28:
The weight shaming of Rose continues as Mooney talks about how it is clear that Rose “lived a rough life” and Lord Alfred Hayes opines that Rose “has not missed too many meals.” In the split screen, the Foundation congratulate Demolition on their WrestleMania victory and put them on notice that they want the tag team titles back. The Foundation methodically work over Ming for several minutes to set up the Hart Attack. Any entertainment value this bout had died when Rose tagged out in the early stages.
Monsoon asks Heenan what went wrong for the Colossal Connection at WrestleMania. Heenan blames bad refereeing, WWF President Jack Tunney, and Andre the Giant for the defeat. He refuses to congratulate Demolition on their success and warns the rest of the WWF that he wants to get gold back in his stable.
Dino Bravo (8-3-1) beats Hercules (5-1) after an elbow drop at 8:10 shown:
This match took place at Madison Square Garden on November 25. Both men receive a lukewarm reception from the crowd, earning heckles later when fans deem the action boring because of Bravo’s methodical strikes and rest holds. Hercules fights out of a bearhug, but after some clothesline he runs into Bravo’s sidewalk slam. Then, the referee screws up by taking forever to get into position for the count. He either does not count correctly or Hercules decides to kick out because Bravo is forced to land a token elbow drop to secure the winning fall. The victory is Bravo’s first over a name talent since early February when he defeated Tito Santana. Hercules is rapidly falling down the card and his body language gives the impression that he would rather be somewhere else. Rating: ¼*
Heenan cuts a nice promo about how he is not going to quit the WWF over the Colossal Connection’s setback at WrestleMania. He promises to make big news by the time 1990 is over. Monsoon sells none of it when it is done, causing Heenan to flip out and say he does not care if Andre the Giant joins next week’s broadcast. He quickly changes his tune to say he will not be around if Andre is coming next week because his aunt is sick. This causes Monsoon to laugh as he ends the show.
The Last Word: Most of the matches on this show were dreadful. Even a Hart Foundation squash was paint by numbers. If not for the banter between Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan, this would have been in the running for the worst television produced by the WWF in 1990.
Up Next: WWF Superstars for April 7!