Monday, December 1, 2008

Hulk Hogan's Celebrity Championship Wrestling - Episode #1

Ten random celebrities being taught in eight weeks how to wrestle? This should be interesting. I’ve heard some mixed things about this show but, since it’s available for download from the lovely Xbox Marketplace, why not take a look.

Opening video package talks about the series and mentions that the celebrities will be trained by "legendary" coaches Brian Knobbs and Brutus Beefcake.

- Dennis Rodman (NBA bad boy)
- Trishelle Canatella (MTV’s “Real World: Las Vegas”)
- Dustin Diamond (Screech from “Saved by the Bell”)
- Danny Bonaduce (well … yeah)
- Nikkie Ziering (Former Barker’s Beauty on “The Price is Right” and Playboy model)
- Butterbean (pro boxer)
- Tiffany (80’s teen sensation)
- Erin Murphy (Tabitha from “Bewitched”)
- Todd Bridges (“Diff’rent Strokes”)
- Frank Stallone (Sly’s brother)

Jimmy Hart and Eric Bischoff meet the celebrities mid-ring and introduce Knobbs and Beefcake. Knobbs look like he ate a whale. Bisch then introduces Hogan as the “man who made this industry”. Hogan expects big things from the celebrities. Hogan says Hart and Bischoff have many years of developing talent. That’s funny because Bisch couldn’t find and develop his own announcing talent! Hulk tells Danny he missed his calling. Celebs will learn three moves a week from the coaches and will be trained to work said moves into a match to be performed in front of a live crowd. The judges for the show will be Bischoff, Hart, and Hogan … as if you couldn’t have guessed.

The celebs are then divided into team and with this week’s moves – clothesline, kick to the mid-section, and forearm smash – being demonstrated.
Team Nasty: Erin, Rodman, Screech, Stallone, Nikki
Team Beefcake: Bonaduce, Tiffany, Butterbean, Bridges, Trishelle

We get some highlights from both training camps. I like Beefcake more as a trainer because he takes a bit more mellow approach while Knobbs likes to holler and scream. Some of the interesting things were Todd Bridges kicking a dude in the nuts, Erin Murphy explaining how to take a bump, and then the coaches trying to choreograph their teams respective matches. Prior to the matches, Dustin says he’ll be the “ring general” for his team.

Time for the matches. Bubba the Love Sponge on commentary. And yes … I will be scoring the matches.

Tiffany & Danny Bonaduce (w/ Todd Bridges) vs. Butterbean & Trishelle Canatella – 2
Good showing by Butterbean and Bonaduce. Danny’s selling was a bit over-the-tope but the fire and intensity was there. Butterbean relied on his strength a lot and didn’t really sell much. Trishelle showed some promise but Tiffany realling brought everything down by missing the top buckle when she was supposed to hit it with her head. Bonaduce and Butterbean close out the bout and Bean’s team wins with a splash. Post-match attack by Tiffany, Danny, and Todd.

Dennis Rodman & Erin Murphy vs. Dustin Diamond & Frank Stallone (w/ Nikki) – 2
It’s funny how they never mention Rodman’s involvement with WCW in this show. Dustin works 95% of the match for his team. His initial selling is good then Frank tags in and doesn’t bring much to the table. Murphy showed a lot of spunk and was really over with the trained crowd. Rodman wins it for his team with a second-rope clothesline. They didn’t stray too much from the formula here.

God … I mean, Hulk … says that Team Nasty had the best match this week so all their members are safe from elimination. The judges save Trishelle, Danny, and Butterbean from elimination. It’s down to Todd and Tiffany. Hulk says that the only thing saving Todd from elimination was his orchestration of the post-match attack for his team. Tiffany is shown the door. See ya Tiffany! You suck and so does your music. Personally, I thought Team Beefcake had the better match, but apparently my opinion doesn't count.

Preview of episode two where the celebs are thrown off a lift onto a giant inflatable mattress. Overall, a fun debut episode. Future episodes will tell me if I should really spend my time watching this, though

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