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World Class Championship Wrestling DVD Review

About.com Rating 4.5 Star Rating

By

World Class Championship Wrestling DVD Review

WCCW DVD Cover

(c) 2007 World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
In the early-'80s, the center of the wrestling universe was Dallas, Texas. This DVD set takes a look at the events that made that happen and the tragic story of the death of the company and even worse, the death of most of the members of the family that made the company.

Disc One - Documentary and Extras

The documentary was good but parts of it seemed to be forced and other parts of the story seemed to be missing or revised. I enjoyed watching the old-time WCCW wrestlers speak. Gary Hart is still a commanding presence when he speaks. Time hasn't been good to some other WCCW stars. I refuse to believe that the person that claimed to be "Gorgeous" Jimmy Garvin was actually him and Buddy Roberts needs to manipulate something on his throat in order to speak. As far as the current WWE stars commenting goes, it actually took away from the flow of the story.

There were some glaring things missing from the DVD. Most notable was the death of Bruiser Brody. And while a huge part of the death of WCCW dealt with the Von Erich's other parts of the story were missing. Things like Jim Crockett taking control of the NWA, the oil crises in 1986, and the extent of the UWF talent raid are either not mentioned or are dealt with in revisionist history mode.

One of the things WCCW did better than anyone else in that era were their personality pieces. Ten of these pieces are on this disc. As far as the interview extras go, the chapters on the airplane crash, Bobo Brazil, and wrestling in Japan are worth checking out.

Disc Two - The Matches

  • 2 of 3 Falls: Duke Keomuka vs. Ricky Starr - This match is so old it is in black and white. I am surprised that a match featuring two wrestlers most people haven't heard of took up almost half-an-hour of this disc, especially in light of the fact that there are no Gino Hernandez matches on this disc.
  • Fritz Von Erich vs. King Kong Bundy - This is Fritz's retirement match. It is really starnge to see King Kong Bundy with hair and relatively skinnier when compared to what he became. Amazingly, the middle age gut Fritz was sporting was almost as big as Bundy's gut.
  • Steel Cage Match: Ric Flair vs Kerry Von Erich - This is the match that began the feud between the Von Erich family and the Fabulous Freebirds. This is one of the most historic matches ever and if not for the events in this match most fans would never have heard of World Class Championship Wrestling.
  • Iceman Parson, Kevin Von Erich, & David Von Erich vs The Fabulous Freebirds - At this time, it was unheard of putting such great matches on free TV and is one of the reason why the local promotion became world famous. I just wish that we could have seen more of David Von Erich wrestling on this DVD.
  • Hair vs. Hair: Iceman Parsons vs. Buddy Roberts - In addition to this match, I wish we would have gotten to see the hair vs. hair match between the Von Erichs and the Dynamic Duo.
  • Bad Street Match: Fritz, Mike, & Kevin Von Erich vs. The Fabulous Freebirds - This match took place at the first David Von Erich Memorial Parade of Champions. At the time, it was the most attended show in wrestling history. There is a typo on the DVD here and it states that David was in this match.
  • Chris Adams & Sunshine vs. Jimmy Garvin & Precious - WCCW was the first wrestling organization that used women in the manner that is a precursor to the Divas of today.
  • Kabuki vs. Kamala - Ever since seeing the Sklar brothers make fun of Kabuki on Cheap Seats, I can't watch a Kabuki match without going, "Chop. Chop. Chop. Side Kick. Chop."
  • Fantastics vs. Midnight Express - This match took place in two rings. All I can say is good luck trying to follow the action in this one. WCCW was known for advancing television production in the wrestling business but this match is not a highlight for the production crew. Additionally, this match paled in comparison to their 1988 NWA battles.
  • Chris Adams vs. Kerry Von Erich - This is part of the best feud in the WCCW that did not involve the Freebirds. It has to be said again, it is amazing what the company used to show on free TV during an era that featured other organizations showing nothing but squash matches.
  • Bruiser Brody & Missing Link vs. One Man Gang & Rick Rude - For a match featuring Brody and the Link, this match is surprisingly tame.
  • Cage Match: Bruiser Brody vs Abdullah the Butcher - I believe this is the first WWE DVD to feature either of these legendary wrestlers.

Overall Recommendation

Anyone that is interested in wrestling history or is familiar with WCCW should buy this DVD. I really wish that this was a three-disc set though. There are just so many great matches and moments in the history of the company that no matter what was put on this DVD, there would be complaints about what is missing from it. Thankfully, there are no repeat matches on this DVD that were on the another Von Erich compilation DVD that was put out before the WWE bought the footage of WCCW. For those wondering why there is not footage after Jerry Jarrett bought the company on this disc, it is because the WWE does not own that footage. That footage is available on multiple value priced DVDs. The footage on those value priced DVD sets feature wrestlers before they were stars, the footage on this DVD features wrestlers that were the biggest names in the business during their prime.

After watching this DVD, if you would further like to explore WCCW I recommend that buy the Heroes of World Class DVD which features a documentary that is better than the one on this disc and the Best of the Von Erich's DVD that features matches that weren't on this DVD. Please note that the Heroes of World Class DVD I reviewed was a one disc DVD and that there is now a two-disc version of that DVD now on the market.

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