Sunday, 16 September 2007

Wrestling Madness: The Best of British - DVD Review

Originally released over a decade ago on video, Wrestling Madness has found it’s way onto DVD, thanks to Fastforward Music. It features matches from the Reslo show, which was originally broadcast on Welsh television station S4C in the eighties and nineties, as well as action from Otto Wanz’s Catch Wrestling Alliance. But is this release as good now as it was then? Our host for the show is boxing commentator Reg Gutteridge, and our commentator is Lee Bamber, known mainly for his work as All-Star’s master of ceremonies.


The first bout sees the legendary Johnny Saint defending his World Lightweight title against second generation star Kid McCoy. It’s a great technical and sporting bout, with both men unleashing their full arsenals, move for move and hold for hold, with Saint getting the title retaining victory. This is the sort of bout Colt Cabana would salivate over.

More title action follows as Bull Power, otherwise known as Big Van Vader, defends his CWA World title against French-Canadian star Monsieur Rambo, a one fall bout fought over fifteen rounds. To call this a wrestling match would be an injustice. This is nothing more than a fight as Power beats the hell out of Rambo, before the Canadian comes back with a couple of powerful body slams, before Power gets the win after a running clothesline. Not bad stuff here.

On to tag action, as the massive Giant Haystacks teams with Drew McDonald against Robbie Brookside and Pat Roach. Fought over three falls, Haystacks and McDonald spend a great deal of time punishing Brookside, but despite brief flurries of offence, Brookside gets counted out after a Haystacks avalanche in the corner, leaving Roach to fight against two men. And this he does, equalising things up by pinning McDonald after a big boot and body slam combo, leaving him alone with the big man. But after McDonald returned to interfere, the ref disqualified Haystacks and awarded the match to Roach.

We then move on to chain match action, with flag match stipulations, as Danny Collins faces current Smackdown star Fit Finlay. No rounds here, and not many wrestling holds in this one, as Collins and Finlay beat the crap out of each other with the chain, and put on a good bout, with Finlay eventually getting the win by posting Collins on the outside of the ring and climbing the pole to claim the flag and the victory.

The final bout is the fourteen man battle royal. Need I say anything about why I hate reporting on these matches? Tons of bodies flying about all over the place, with Danny Collins overcoming all the odds to win the match.

In conclusion - this is basically the same as the VHS release all those years ago, and it’s as entertaining now as it was then, with the Saint/McCoy bout the stand-out match of the collection. This is certainly a great buy, especially for the old school British fans out there.

With thanks to Stuart Lake for supplying a copy of this release. To purchase your copy online, visit the Lake Entertainments website at www.lakeents.co.uk