Back in 1988, several regional wrestling promotions joined forces and presented a Pay-per-View called “Superclash III.” They were fighting for survival as the WWF (now WWE) was gobbling up promotions and wrestlers like a Hungry Hungry Hippo gobbles up colored marbles.
The event was no WrestleMania, but it wanted to be. In general, it featured fairly lackluster performances, low attendance, and poor ratings. The booking is a little desperate — I mean, a Lingerie Battle Royal??! Someone recently posted the entire show on YouTube if you want to see what I mean.
The Main Event was fairly hot — a bloody-faced and well-muscled Kerry von Erich repeatedly locking his Iron Claw on Jerry Lawlor. I wrote about that gory/exciting scene way back in 2001, in Episode #30 of my old Wrestling Arsenal website. (Has it been 20 years since I started blogging about my hard-on for rasslin?!?) The finish of that match is anti-climactic: the ref called it off because Kerry was bleeding too much, I suppose so neither Federation’s Top Guy had to lose the match and sacrifice his swagger.
So the Match of the Night for me, now that I’ve scanned through the whole event video, has to be one of my oldest crushes — Eric Embry — giving a wrestling lesson to the blond and beautiful youngster, Jeff Jarrett. This begins at 12:22 into the video
It is a very short match, especially for a Title Bout — just around 4 minutes. And Embry has to carry the rookie through most of it. But I think both guys are really sexy, each in his own way, and they deliver an entertaining narrative.
Embry struts around with a stoic manliness that conveys his masculinity, often hiking up his bulging trunks to remind us he’s a Big Swingin’ Dick. Young Jarrett, on the other hand, is lithe and supple, with a nice tan and long blond hair as pretty as a girl’s. And they had traded the championship back and forth a few times, making it seem as if this gruff old Heel and beautiful blond Eye Candy are in some sort of long-term relationship.
They start the match by trading holds back-and-forth, presenting a classic “Evenly Matched” scenario. But then Embry unleashes his inner Sleazy Heel by stunning Jarrett with a mean Clothesline to the neck! Thus we see how guys like Embry maintain their power, even though guys like Jarrett are prettier and more buff.
Embry is presented as the Ruthless Veteran, skilled in putting the hurt on the gorgeous young Wanna-Bes. The audience loves his show of naked aggression (and loves Embry, even though he’s the Heel.) Jarrett meanwhile switches readily (perhaps too readily) into Helpless Ragdoll Bitch mode. He clutches his chest pathetically and, soon after, nurses his injured shoulder.
I’ve blogged about Embry a few times now and I’ll say it again: I always found him enticing and arousing even if he was not as buff or pretty or well-manicured as most of my other wrestling crushes. It’s something about his manly “Dad Bod” physique, and I’m always attracted to guys with dark beards paired with lightened hair — perhaps because many hot pro wrestlers sported this look during my formative years.
Jarrett injures himself after a clumsy miss, landing awkwardly on his left arm after Embry ducked out of the way. Then Jarrett rolls out of the ring to suffer on the floor like a pathetic jobber, really starting to seem like a weak bitch relative to Embry’s dominating aggression.
I loved hearing the blond rookie’s dramatic cries of pain after he climbed back in the ring and my man, Embry, ruthlessly attacked that injured limb!
The ending was a bit surprising because Embry easily rolls up his suffering Baby-Face to get the Three Count, burying the heroic young sensation by making him seem weak. Why did they let the pretty Up-And-Comer, usually a protected asset, lose his credibility by being pinned fair and square? Was it because the audience was really digging Embry, so he didn’t feel the need to cheat like a typical Heel? Or maybe Jarrett was legit injured and they had to finish it quickly with minimal further damage…
Anyway, for me, this is a quick and enjoyable showcase of Embry’s remarkable talents from a bygone era when the regional federations were on life support but desperate to fight back.