Sunday, August 21, 2016

Wacky Wrestling VHS Boxes #5

Tonight is SummerSlam, WWE's self-proclaimed biggest party of the summer. As is tradition here, anytime one of WWE's four tent pole events happens, I look at some old wrestling video boxes. For this installment, I'm going to go way back in the archives and check out some of the old non-PPV tapes that Coliseum Video released. Let's dive in!

Even More Unusual Matches (1987)

For the majority of their early releases, Coliseum Video issued tapes in these large, plastic clamshell cases, similar to what Disney would release their tapes in during the 1990s (Lion King for example). This particular tape was a sequel to one of the first round of tapes released by Coliseum Video and the WWF in 1985 and contains all sorts of crazy matches taped in arenas in Canada and the U.S., however most of the matches came from the monthly Madison Square Garden shows that were broadcast on the MSG Network. Some of the more fun matches on this tape include Randy Savage vs. Bruno Sammartino in a Lumberjack Match, a Bunkhouse Battle Royal, and a series of Texas Death Matches between Hulk Hogan and Harley Race. Personally, I like these older tapes more than the more common ones from the early 1990s as these are much harder to find in playable condition and just in general, they are a lot of fun to watch.

Inside the Steel Cage (1986)

Long before TNA Wrestling (or Impact Wrestling or whatever they're called these days) had their annual all cage match show, there was this tape chronicling some of the best cage matches from around the WWF. In particular, there are a few matches on here that haven't really seen the light of day much on current DVD and Blu-Ray releases such as Andre the Giant vs. Kamala from Toronto and a tag team cage match with Randy Savage & Adrian Adonis facing Bruno Sammartino & Tito Santana. Any tape from this era featuring a cage match also has to include the extremely overrated, at least in my opinion, Don Muraco/Jimmy Snuka cage match where Snuka dives off the top of the cage. As I mentioned previously, these older tapes are really a lot of fun to watch, if you can find them that is.

Andre the Giant (1985)

This particular tape I picked up years ago at the local flea market and I've watched it maybe once. For modern fans, this should look familiar as it was re-released in the late 90s on both VHS on DVD, which makes it the only Coliseum Video tape that wasn't a pay-per-view to be re-issued. The tape is only an hour long but there are a lot of things stuffed in here, especially an especially hard to find boxing match against Gorilla Monsoon from Puerto Rico. 

Wrestlefest '90

The Wrestlefest series ran for most of the Coliseum Video lifespan, debuting in 1988 as a release of a house show at Milwaukee County Stadium (which is a really hard to find tape by the way) and continued with this release. By this time, the switch had been made to the oversized slip covers from the plastic clamshells. I personally prefer the slip covers and the designs are much better. Take this for example as they've taken pictures, presumably from action on the tape, and laid them against a backdrop of the crowd from WrestleMania III. I'll admit, some of the matches on here like Ultimate Warrior vs. Dino Bravo are pretty boring, but popping in a tape like this should take anyone back to being a kid again sitting in front of the TV with a big bowl of popcorn ready to watch some WWF action.

Hope you enjoyed this round of wacky wrestling tapes! Enjoy SummerSlam and there will be more tapes coming up in November when Survivor Series rolls around.


  1. Wow, these are older than I remember. I remember the name WrestleFest though. I love this series you do, It makes me want to go through my old tapes, if I could only find a VCR that works.

  2. Hogan vs. Race, Andre vs. Kamala, Muraco vs. Snuka... these are all from the era when I watched wrestling. Great stuff.

  3. I remember renting the first two back in my younger days(or should I say begging my mom and dad to rent them). Great stuff!