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[1992-11-14-SMW-TV] Down and Dirty: Bob Armstrong / Kevin Sullivan commercial

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Dutch's guest is Bob Armstrong. Bob had time to sit on his decision and says Sullivan is still banned from TV, but he doesn't want him to get away with what he did, so he can show up at the arenas if he wants, but Bob has someone really scary waiting on him .. the Mongolian Stomper! We get some cool 70s era footage of Armstrong vs Stomper. Bob was BORN for this role and should be commissioner of every single wrestling promotion.

 

Then we get an amazing Kevin Sullivan video to "Sympathy For The Devil" that's a paid advertisement, leading in to a vignette where he's in Satanic-looking gear sitting by a fire and saying some harsh words about Bob Armstrong and SMW ... "allegations, lies and incinuendos ..." Incinuendos? He has a tombstone with Brian Lee's name on it. Modern wrestling would benefit by having more madmen. SMW is suddenly a zillion times more interesting.

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Armstrong explains that Sullivan targeted Brian Lee because Armstrong wouldn't allow him to wrestle in the territory. He's going to allow Sullivan to wrestle, just not on television. With Lee out, Sullivan will be facing the Mongolian Stomper. Clips of a pretty intense fight between Armstrong and the Stomper. Once again Armstrong is doing Lee's work for him, but when the promos are that great, what are you going to do?

 

Caudle reads a prepared statement prior to Sullivan's "paid advertisement." Sullivan blames Bob Armstrong for Brian Lee's condition, and laments how wrestling has become a sanitized kiddie show. I suspect Cornette is tacitly speaking through this promo, but it's instantly probably my favorite Sullivan promo ever.

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Armstrong interview where he says Sullivan is banned from TV, but Brian Lee can get his hands on him at an SMW show off of TV. Probably effective to promote local shows. Says at Thanksgiving Thunder Sullivan gets the Mongolian Stomper, shown here in clips that looked decades old.

 

Then a paid commercial from Sullivan. Completely over the top, but feels better here than WCW in 1995. Enjoyable now even if it wouldn't necessarily work. One of the real highlights from SMW thus far.

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Down & Dirty opens by recapping what happened between Kevin Sullivan and Brian Lee last week, with Dutch giving a disclaimer that it is graphic footage and has been censored due to some complaints they've received about it. The censoring (a black circle) makes no difference and to an extent makes it look worse as things are left to your imagination. Dutch says that he doesn't blame Armstrong in his actions of suspending Sullivan as last week the whole show got out of control. Bob says that he finally found out why Sullivan had this grudge against him and SMW and it is because when the company first started he wanted to come and wrestle here, however due to his bad reputation he didn't want him here and didn't need another problem. As a result he held this grudge and finally picked his chance. Armstrong says that he feels responsible because he let him come back and wrestle Brian Lee and when he entered the ring last week and saw what a bad condition Lee was in, he did lose control. He's thought about things and while he is banning him from TV, if he wants to be so bad as to wrestle somebody, he's not going to let him get away with what he did. He's going to pay for it as he knows a man who is as big, as bad, has been suspended from more territories than anyone and who he has personal experience with. He tells Sullivan if he wants a part of this, if he wants to get a part of the real baddest men in the organisation, then at Thanksgiving Thunder he'll see the baddest of them all, the Mongolian Stomper. A cool old video then plays of Bob Armstrong vs Mongolian Stomper from the 70s. Armstrong says that he didn't even want to call the Stomper but did want to correct a wrong that he felt he caused, and at Thanksgiving Thunder the Mongolian Stomper will leave Sullivan looking twice as bad as Brian Lee.

 

We then get a paid commercial announcement from Kevin Sullivan who has bought time on the station. The commercial opens to the sound of the Rolling Stones’ ‘Sympathy for the Devil’ with Sullivan sat by a fire and the Nightstalker and Molokai flanking him on either side. Sullivan says that what happened is on Bob Armstrong’s head as all he wanted was a chance to come to SMW, but just like the other federations, he said I was too violent. ‘It was never proven, it was lies, it was insinuendos’. He says that this is just the beginning, wrestling has gone through a change, they want to sanitise it, make it a kiddie’s show, well he’s not for kids. He was told he was not a good influence that he and his followers are what’s wrong with society and it’s because of people who pass judgment that is why he is here today. The big organisations can sanitise wrestling all they want but this is Smoky Mountain Wrestling, this is where it’s all real! Bob Armstrong has made another mistake at the Thanksgiving Thunder and he’s going to show the Mongolian Stomper that he is no longer a warrior, just an errand boy for the commissioner. Sympathy for the Devil plays again as the commercial ends.

 

A couple of fantastic segment, firstly with Armstrong all contrite about what he feels he's caused and wanting to right a wrong and then this creepy, eerie Kevin Sullivan paid commercial. Sullivan's delivery is spot on with the tone and the setting is perfect all dark, and just lit by the fire. Mesmerising stuff. I didn't twig that Armstrong is doing Lee's work on the promo front, but when he is that good and the difference between the two of them is so wide it makes no difference, and makes the whole thing so much better anyway.

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We didn't get the beginning of this, but I really didn't need to see the beating of Lee again anyway.

 

Bullet Bob is tremendous here, and it doesn't matter that he's doing the kind of promo work that Lee should be doing, because Lee simply isn't capable of it, at least not like this. You can almost taste the resignation and frustration in Bullet Bob's voice, as he knows the lengths he's had to go to in order to correct the wrong of Sully's presence. After seeing the footage between Stomper and Bullet Bob (which is the highlight of the segment, by the way), you know how serious Bullet Bob thinks this mess is, that he has to go to a man whom he obviously still dislikes immensely in order to get revenge for Lee. The fact that (if I'm not mistaken) Sully managed the Stomper at one time makes the stakes even higher here, as there's always a chance that Sully could work his voodoo, get Stomper over to his side, and wreak even more havoc on SMW. There's definitely a feeling here that the future of the entire promotion hangs in the balance.

 

Sully is excellent as well, pitting aside the rambling and devil talk and speaking straight from the depths of his cold, black heart. Bullet Bob tried to sanitize SMW, promoting people like Brian Lee at Sully's expense, and now he's going to pay for it, and Stomper will also pay for turning his back on the dark side. It's a simple message, but the creepy atmosphere adds immeasurably to it, as do the followers repeating the key words in that eerie whisper. Is Sully speaking for Corny? More than likely, but you get the feeling that he believes what he's saying, too. Maybe that's why Corny brought Sully in and encouraged him to go wild: to tell the viewers, the stations the promotion's on, and most importantly the advertisers that this isn't the cartopn show they're used to seeing; this is a bunch of adults inflicting pain and blood on each other and liking it, and other adults who like watching them do it.

 

I like this version of Sully more than the guy who speaks in tongues and says things that even he most likely doesn't understand fully. He's definitely got potential to raise a whole bunch of hell in SMW, and I'd like to see just who's going to stop him and how far they're going to have to go to do it.

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