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[1990-01-21-WWF-Royal Rumble] Brutus Beefcake vs The Genius

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Last few minutes. We get a ref bump, and Beefcake puts Genius to sleep. He starts cutting his hair, but Mr. Perfect cuts him off. Beefcake was facing the aisle, but I was guess was too blind to notice a man in a neon orange singlet running at him. Genius ended up with a huge bald spot on his head and the heels work Beefcake over with a chair. I wasn't sure why this was a double DQ, then I remembered Brutus bringing shears into the ring, so yeah.

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Beefcake actually has his back to the aisle to start with, then stupidly turns around after playing to the crowd. Compounded by a Crockett-like replay job that shows Beefcake ignoring Perfect's run-in and showing Perfect throwing forearms instead of the chairshots. They push broken ribs for Beefcake but I don't recall that ever being brought up again through to WM6.

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Still always weird to hear Tony on WWF PPV. We get some good interaction with him and Jesse here and I always love Jesse freaking out over Brutus cutting someone's hair. Brutus looks like an idiot with the Perfect run in which is par the course for him.

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These moments of Jesse on commentary makes me kind of sad as he won't be around too much longer on WWF TV. The Perfect Plex doesn't really work as a run in/beatdown move. Tony modifying Jesse's line of always cheat to always cutting hair was pretty funny. Tony does complain about Perfect bringing a weapon into the ring but seems to forget Beefcake did that first with the scissors.

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Tony + Jesse is one of my favourite commentary teams because Tony is such a straight-laced guy and Jesse is Jesse.

 

I like how happy he is about Perfect coming to the rescue.

 

It's ironic isn't it that Brutus was such a terrible barber. Couldn't give a decent haircut to save his life. "That haircut makes Gene Okerlund's hair look good" "Now Jesse" Ha ha.

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Fine build to the Perfect/Beefcake Mania match here. Ref bump and Beefcake puts Genius out with the sleeper. Instead of trying to revive the ref and pick up the win, Beefcake is more worried about giving Genius a haircut. The Genius/Perfect pairing was one that I never really understood.

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Double DQ as Beefcake ignores that the ref is bumped and just assumes he won, so he gets the shears and gets a couple locks of hair before Mr. Perfect runs down and punches Brutus off - continuing their feud.

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This is really jarring in the context of the yearbook because it embodies so many of the worst things about WWF wrestling: Hebner taking his trademark untrained bump to the floor where he nearly maims himself catching the ropes, weird non-finishes that would never happen in other promotions (a double DQ finish is called when the ref is still bumped and they never explain why Brutus was DQed even if it sort of makes sense), Briutus Beefcake wrestling, etc.

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They didn't need the double-DQ here. Let Beefcake win, since Lanny means nothing as a wrestler by now and the real issue is between Beefcake and Hennig, and then you can do the exact same stuff, run-in and all.

 

The Perfect Plex in a beatdown? I know Curt's not supposed to be a Hennig anymore, but the Ax would have made a ton more sense. Then again, that finisher doesn't have the word "perfect" in it, so a wrestler doing a perfection gimmick can't use it, at least in Vince's world. (Ever heard of calling it "The Perfect Forearm", guys?)

 

Great job by Tony and Jesse of justifying their respective favorites' cheating at the right time. This is obviously before Tony got the huge chip on his shoulder that he would during his later WCW days, and he sounds like he's having a good time with Jesse here. I wish he'd remembered this style when it came time to work with The Brain later on.

 

Love The Bod's line about Okerlund's hair and Tony's slightly amused comeback, "Now Jesse......" They'd have been the new Monsoon and Heenan if things had broken just a bit differently. Looking forward to their WCW pairing in later yearbooks.

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I completely forgot Tony was in WWF for a year and was really disoriented as to what was going on. I hate the hair cutting in the ring. I'm always afraid someone is going to get hurt, be it scissors or shears. The refs look like triplets.

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Just want to echo Bix on the brutally ugly and unsafe Hebner bump (my hatred of those two grows every time I watch them work) and garretta on the total lack of necessity of the double DQ. Brutus was so much higher up the pecking order coming into this match that he could have beat Genius clean, then went to work on the hair causing an irate Perfect to run-in. The double DQ didn't protect anybody. In fact, the whole ref bump thing made Beefcake look stupid because he went for the sheers even though the match was still going on at that point. What kind of babyface behavior was that? Moron.

That said, I loved the Genius' shtick early in the match. His prancing and dainty showmanship always felt weird as a babyface, particularly in the 80's, so the move to turn him into a heel works well. He's just so annoying in the opening bits that I really wanted to see him get the tar pounded out of him (the completely unnecessary cartwheel on the outside being a great example). Sadly Brutus is not the guy to provide such a beating. He just has such a limited and uninteresting moveset. It's a shame they didn't have a better worker in the Barber gimmick, because it was seriously over with the audience and such a great story-driving element, but he rarely backed it up with his work. *1/2 mostly for Genius' gaga.

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The Genius escapes Beefcake's first sleeper attempt with some elbows to the mid-section. He shoots The Genius into the ropes, but he crashes into Earl Hebner who takes an awkward looking fall backwards through the ropes to the floor. The two of them continue to wrestle and it's not long before the Barber again has him locked in the sleeper. This time The Genius goes out, but no referee. For some reason instead of trying to revive the referee or drag him back into the ring, Beefcake goes and gets his scissors. The Barber starts cutting off some of his hair at which point Mr Perfect runs out and attacks Beefcake (including using the Perfect Plex???). Hebner finally comes round and the bell rings. Perfect grabs a chair from ringside and nails Beefcake in the ribs with it. A bunch of referees (including a young Shane McMahon) come out and usher Perfect and The Genius to the back, whist The Fink announces the match is a double disqualification.

 

This was just weird. I don't know if Perfect was late on he run in or what (Beefcake's positioning with his back to the aisle would give the idea that he might have been), but I have no idea why they would do the ref bump and have Beefcake put The Genius to sleep if someone wasn't at least going to try to stop him cutting his hair? A double disqualification finish? Surely Poffo didn't refuse to do the job? Having re-watched this to double check, Hebner never actually sees Beefcake doing anything worthy of getting disqualified, he comes round as Perfect and The Genius are double teaming him. It does build the eventual Beefcake vs Perfect match for Wrestlemania, but as others have said, this whole scenario could've worked without the ref bump and just have Perfect attacking Beefcake post match as he is administering the hair cut. Strange.

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Figured after lurking without posting I'd jump in on this by watching along with the content available on WWE Network. So this match is my starting point:

 

This match is basically an extension of the Hogan/Perfect feud over the WWF title that was going on around this time, with Hogan's buddy the Barber taking on Perfect's manager, the Genius, who had actually picked up a count out victory over Hogan on the most recent edition of Saturday Night's Main Event thanks to Perfect's involvement. Perfect gets involved here as well, which results in the match being thrown out as a double DQ. Genius loses some hair courtesy of the Barber, but the heels have the last laugh, leaving Beefcake laid out. Really just a way of transitioning Perfect to Beefcake for Mania season. The match itself was nothing special.

 

Grade: 1/2*

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This is really jarring in the context of the yearbook because it embodies so many of the worst things about WWF wrestling: Hebner taking his trademark untrained bump to the floor where he nearly maims himself catching the ropes, weird non-finishes that would never happen in other promotions (a double DQ finish is called when the ref is still bumped and they never explain why Brutus was DQed even if it sort of makes sense), Briutus Beefcake wrestling, etc.

 

This pretty much says everything I would. WWF style always asks you to ignore a lot of your niggles for the sake of the finish. I always dug Tony and Jesse though.

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