Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Guest Booker with Terry Taylor - DVD Review

It’s 1987. Bill Watts, having attempted to expand his UWF promotion has over-extended himself financially, and ends up selling everything to Jim Crockett promotions. The result is that a select few go on to be big stars while very little else happens as prestigious titles were allowed to fall by the wayside.

But what if that never happened? What if the UWF turned up on NWA shows demanding spots on the roster? What if UWF Heavyweight Champion “Dr. Death” Steve Williams faced NWA World Champion “Nature Boy” Ric Flair in a unification match?

This, and much more, is the subject of another release from Kayfabe Commentaries’ Guest Booker series, and the man given the pen this time around was on the UWF roster at the time of the sale, Terry Taylor.

With Sean Oliver acting as question master, Taylor begins by telling us how he got in the business, and of how he never had any training prior to his first match, which was also his first televised match. That’s something that would never happen in this day and age, because I know of some promotions who’d give you at least a weekend’s worth of training before throwing them in front of a live audience.

From there he goes on to discuss his career as a booker, from a two month stint as Watts’ assistant in the UWF to his time with WCW and WWE, before eventually making his way to TNA.

Like many who came through his era Taylor’s booking principles and philosophies are just so sound and logical, something we just don’t get to see today in the era of scripted promos and one-off blow-off matches.

It takes about 40 minutes or so before Taylor gets down to the crux of the matter and books four weeks worth of television, leading up to a pay-per-view. After choosing who he wants to keep from both rosters he begins with how the UWF workers would be introduced on NWA programming, before moving on to the aforementioned and inevitable angle between Williams and Flair.

Without giving too much away the booking is sound, and if it had happened it would certainly have made great television.

There’s also the other unification battles to take care of, with Taylor himself and Chris Adams as UWF Tag Team Champions taking on their NWA counterparts Rick Rude and Manny Fernandez, and the battle of the TV Champions between Eddie Gilbert and Tully Blanchard, as well as a drinking angle between Buzz Sawyer and Dick Murdoch and a possible angle between the original Freebirds and the Road Warriors.

As a booker Taylor comes across as someone with excellent ideas, which is why he was held in such high regard by the companies he worked for. However it’s a shame that, due to time constraints, we only got to see him book four angles and a month’s worth of television. It would have been interesting to see how he booked UWF guys like Sting and Rick Steiner, and how NWA guys like Arn Anderson and Lex Luger would have fitted into the mix.

But apart from this little grip this latest Guest Booker is worth watching, and that’s why I’m once again giving a Kayfabe Commentaries release the big thumbs up, because if you haven’t finished your Christmas shopping yet then this would be a good present for the wrestling fan in your life.

With thanks to the powers that be for supplying a copy of this release. Guest Booker with Terry Taylor is available to buy online at www.kayfabecommentaries.com.

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