They tried to keep me out, they continue to try to keep me out. I already done told you though, so called Davey-Boy Cup Legal Team, I don't want to be in your little Tournament. I have my own Tournament, one that I can't help but win. Speaking of, let's check the rankings;
How did this happen? Shane wrote two bastarding sentences. T.O. didn't write anything! Arn Anderson.....he can do what he likes. Sorry Mr. Enforcer, sir. Still though, THE FuckING!!! Who's responsible for this? I demand answers, damn your hide! JUDGES!
Judge Chop: All rankings are final, fucknuts. Step up your game, Mr. Chop.
It just goes on and on. I swear these people are out to get me, I'm not a paranoid man but the organizers of The Davey Boy Cup are absolutely in cahoots with the Judges of The Not The Davey Boy Cup.
Judge Chop: There is only one Judge. It's me. I'm you. You've gone mad. Put some clothes on.
CAHOOTS! Can't hold me down though.
Against the System.....
Forced to the Fringes.....
He will write a Column......
A REVIEW COLUMN..... Bahm Bah Na Na Na!!
Last time, I talked about how awesome Arn Anderson is and it was accurate. The Enforcer is the definition of under-appreciated and as far as I'm concerned he is the epitome of what a Wrestler is. Big, tough, eloquent and violent. A serious man living in serious times.
Flair is The Man. You know that though, because you've probably read a column of mine before and I'm never done banging on about him. Again though, it's accurate. Arn is a Wrestler. Flair is Flair. He's above everything else, that's no knock on other performers, just a view of how I see Naitch. Some performers transcend there Art.
"To be The Man, you got to beat The Man" and no one, in my eyes, has ever Beat The Man.
So it felt fitting to pay a little homage to The Greatest of All Time. I toyed briefly with the Wrestlemania retirement match, due to the sheer weight of emotion attached, the only Wrestling match in history to make me cry. I also considered his World Title match with HHH, where The Game tries to order him to lay down (still sickens me to this day, The Man does not lay down!), it being my favourite match in Raw history and actually a great example of what Hunter is capable of when he wants to, when he actually respects his opponent.
Ultimately though, I realized that those were sentimental choices. More likely better in my head, in the fire of the moment, but they would not hold up to scrutiny. More than that, they were examples of what Flair was capable of with a little help, an ageing legend being helped towads greatness. They are not flair matches so much as an HBK and HHH match respectively. I did not want that, this ain't no DX tribute column. I wanted The Man proving that he is The Man. In the end there could be only one choice of match;
Ric Flair versus Terry Funk - I Quit Match for the NWA Title
Very seldom will I go back and watch a wrestling match after the angle has ended as I need the fire that I mentioned earlier. However, some matches are just different. Some matches always have the fire. Flair-Funk is one such match.
Coming immediately in the aftermath of the legendary Steamboat series, Funk is, at first look, the most unlikely follower to Steamboat as a challenger. In practice though, Funk is the perfect follow up. Where Steamboat/Flair was two great athletes proving who the better man was. Two polar opposites in behavior, lifestyle and general approach to everything. Funk is just bat-shit crazy. Crazier than the living tornado that was The Nature Boy. That's fucking crazy.
Where Steamboat represented a kind of new breed of Wrestler, hyper-athletic, high flying (comparatively) and clean cut. Whereas, Funk is kind of a distorted mirror image of Flair, a wild man, a loon with nothing to lose. As well as all that though, it gives me an excuse to re-watch the match.
Judge Chop - "Just write the fucking thing"
Mr. Chops Old-Timey Match Running Diary!
0:55 - We have out first chop by Flair! Funk tumbles out of the ring, onto the floor and almost collapses over the bar. Crazy fuck.
1:07 - Jim Ross comments that Funk is irrational. Funk swings at thin air. Seriously, bat-shit. Madder than Mad Jack McMad.
1:28 - Corner chops by flair! Irish whip, Funk bounces back and chop again! I am going to say chop a lot in this column. It was not planned. Chop.
2:20 - We have our first Wooooooooo!! This is noteworthy as the Flair Woooo was the first thing I liked about him, it is the ultimate wrestler catchphrase. I have WOOOOOed in response.
2:40 Flair trips Funk and we have a "blatant choke" - bear in mind that Flair comes into this match as the face. No face performer in history has ever ever been allowed to cheat so much. Eddie doesn't count because his cheating was more cheeky-chappy than gougey-chokey.
3:18 - Big left hand by The Funker! Then back in the ring and the headbutt to Flair! Terry Funk is vicious as fuck.
3:48 - CHOP!!!!!
4:12 - Funk throws Flair out of the ring. Flair does a nice old school tumble. He doesn't launch himself out of the ring like the kids these days, a tumble. Like he's too tired to stop the momentum.
4:46 - Funk is screaming "Do you quit?!" .....then hits Flair with the mic before he can answer. Heehee!
5:15 - Funk hits Flair with a big right hand. Ric collapses right on his back, I love a Nature Boy collapse.
5:55 - "You pig! You Egg-sucking Dog!" I would never think to call a man an Egg-sucking Dog. That's just one of the reasons why I'm not The Funker.
6:45 - Flair is on his knees and Funk is slapping him repeatedly. Short, sharp slaps. So disrespectful. We are in no doubt who the bad guy is. It's the guy that calls people Egg-sucking Dogs, that's who. whom?
6:58 CHOP!!!! And Funk has tumbled out of the ring again. Naitch used to have some power in him, it seems.
7:24 - CHOPS!!! Plural!! Ric is actually chopping Funk round the outside of the ring now, just chopping him in the direction he wants him to go in!
7:43 - Funk is smacked head first off the guard-rail and does his trademark "demented looney tunes character" act.
8:15 Flair has the mic for the first time. HE doesn't call anyone an Egg-sucking Dog though, so it's less good.
9:15 - Funk has the mic again "You remember your neck Flair" - Terry sounds almost sad as he says it. I love Funks voice, there is a unique wobble to it, like he's always on the verge of crying. Like he feels quite sad about all the terrible things he is going to do.
10:00 - Piledriver! It's quite slow by todays standards but back then this was a big deal. For those that don't know, the build up to the match featured Funk Piledriving Flair through a table (pretty much unheard of at the time). In my opinion, not enough is made of this moment by the performers. Everyone moves on fairly quickly.
10:24 - The Funkanator is screaming "gutless pig!" All this screaming, I know Mick Foley has seen this match a few times.
11:05 - Piledriver on the floor! Again, lacks the hard oomph we might be used too but in the context, a very scary moment. Once again though, not nearly enough emphasis is put on this moment. Perhaps dues to the nature of the I Quit match, Once you know the move hasn't made him quit you need to move on so it makes it very hard to dwell on the moment.
11:40 Funk hits Flair n the head with the mic - it makes a very pleasing "bonk" sound. Oh, how I love a mic shot. Bonk.
12:15 Elbow to the head. Flair sells like he's just been shot.
12:46 - Outside the ring again and The Nature Boy has just been slammed into a table!
13:05 - CHOP!!!!
13:38 - Flair launches himself at Terry! The best thing about it is he flies in from off camera, like a horror movie shot, excellent camera work! Funk tries to fight back and Flair launches him across a table - Bar Brawl style!! I am so happy right now.
14:27 - Balls first over the railings! "Ow, me conkers" I say to no one. The Funker sells it like a champ, Flair is building a head of steam now.
14:55 - Jim Ross (not yet JR) raises the stakes, telling us this a potentially career threatening match. Wondering why he didn't bring this up after one of the Piledrivers. Like i said though, he is not yet JR, much more play-by-play than hype man here.
15:15 - Funk is crawling. LOVE IT. Heels just do not crawl anymore. Everyone is terrified of looking weak. Give me a good crawl or a beg-off any day.
15:28 - Inverted atomic drop into a figure four tease. The crowd pops hard for this as do I. Forgetting that I know how long the match is. Excellent work by The Champ here, the crowd know how this match ends already, now it's all about the journey.
16:00 CHOP!! Punch! Leg Kick! CHOP!!! Repeat! CHOP!!!!
16:38 - Terry Funk is hopping away! This is at once hilarious and tense as Flair chases and then launches at him! I'm now trying to remember the last good awkward launch I saw in wrestling. I recall Ziggler doing it to Del Rio a fe months back during the concussion angle. WWE is far too polished. Everyone is perhaps too athletic?
17:15 - Stalling suplex into the ring! Nice bit of strength there by Flair, uncharacteristic. It really is very odd to see him pulling out face maneuvers.
17:34 - Leg kick, figure fo....no. Funk fights it. Eye gouge! Son of a bitch!
17:57 - Funk wants to suplex Flair back into the ring now. Blocked. OUCH! Fuck me, sideways.The Funker takes a hard bump onto the apron. That looked really fucking sore.
18:26 - FIGURE FOUR! Crowd is very much into this. Funk is kicking around like a full on mental case.
18:38 - "Never, NEVER!!" Funk is not for quitting "Oh God!" Flail, flail.
18:47 - Terry Funk, still in the Figure Four, throws the referee over himself and Flair. The ref bounces right back up. Earl Hebner would not have walked for an hour. Modern refs are bitch-made.
18:50 - Funk is just screaming now, nearly 30 seconds in now. How often do you see this kind of fortitude from the bad guy? It is fantastic. Funk has been everything in this match.
19:00 - "My leg is breaking" - I fucking love you, Terry Funk.
19:07 - YES!! Flair Wins! Funk quits!
20:00 - "You're a hell of a man, Ric Flair" - Terry Funk
I tell you what, Gentlemen and Bruces, I am exhausted. Looking back at this rundown, it seems like there wasn't a huge amount going on in this match. Very simply put together, the minimum of moves (the internet tells me number of moves is key to good wrestling), repetitive as hell at times (CHOP!!!) but I was drawn in throughout. I know how it ends, I've seen this match more than any other, but I'm invested. I am invested and I don't entirely know why.
There are many great writers round here, analyzing matches and discussing just what makes them great (or not) or important (or not) and that is valid. If that is how you enjoy Wrestling, have at it. I will read your columns and be impressed by what you have to say, how you say it and the way you can take something intangible and put words to it. For me though, it can't really be explained. Great Wrestling is like any other great Art, it just is.
Flair-Funk is just great. It is fun, it is wild, it has the phrase "Egg-sucking Dog" in it. I am as happy as a very happy thing.
Ima watch it again. I suggest you do too, You Egg-sucking Dog.