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For many member of the self proclaimed doyens of wrestling purity, the IWC, the thought of sitting through 9 hours of Hulk Hogan matches is probably too much to bare. To those of us who grew up with it and watch MMA for realistic fighting action, and the WWE as a rare diversion, there's no huge issue.
And so we kick things off with Hulk Hogan as a heel (!) taking n Andre the Giant in a match from 1980. Hogan cheats, hitting Andre with something he hides in elbow pad, body slams Andre, proof if any be needed, that Wrestlemania 3 was not the first time Andre had been body slammed, not that it matters in the least. Short match, not really sure why it's here to be honest.
Next we hear about Hogan's short stint in the AWA as a babyface No.1 contender for the AWA Title and see him get royally hosed in match with Nick Bockwinkle. Poor Hulkster. Leave that evil company and electrify us fans in the WWE.
Of course he did and our next match is his first ever WWE Title victory in a short, back and forth match with the Iron Shiek. He wins the title triggering the start of Hulkamania, well according to this DVD anyway.
We then see a Madison Square Garden match between Hogan and Big John Studd, with Bobby Heenan in his corner. Hogan wins. Then another significant match with Hogan and Roddy Piper battling at the War to end it All. Needless to say the War ended nothing and a double DQ and Mr T's interference to help the Hulkster at the end of the fight led to the next match, the main event from Wrestlemania, where Hogan and Mr T defeated Roddy Piper and Paul Orndorff, much to the crowd's delight.
And so we fast forward to Wrestlemania 2 and the match that many IWCers bring up when they talk about worst matches in history as Hogan defeated King Kong Bundy in a steel cage match. Out of this we see the Orndorff rivalry, specifically a match from 1986 and get a nice finish with the crowd believing Hogan had lost the title to Orndorff, only to find out that the ref had been trying to disqualify Orndorff when he appeared to be counting three. Rounding out the first disc we have one of the biggest wrestling matches of all time as Hogan defeated Andre the Giant at Wrestlemania 3.
With the exception of the Orndorff match and parts of the Bockwinkle one, the first disc is mainly rubbish wrestling wise, but the crowds are something to behold, and if you grew up loving Hogan you wouldn't be unhappy with what you've seen.
Disc 2 brings us to Wrestlemania V where the mega powers collide and Hogan wins a good match against Randy Savage to become a two time WWE Champion. Following this is another good match as Hogan lost the title The Ultimate Warrior at Wrestlemania VI. We skip another twelve months to Hogans next title win, a passable match against Sgt Slaughter at Wrestlemania VII. Next is his regaining the title from The Undertaker at the Tuesday in Texas PPV in a screwy finish.
The DVD switches gears to Hogan's WCW run and has the best match of his career against Ric Flair, followed by his successful heel turn in 1996, a title win over the Giant in a decent match and then a loss to Sting in another match frequently mentioned in the IWC's worst match ever discussions at Starrcade in 1997 as Disc 2 ends. A good disc match quality wise, and showing another side of his career as an effective and hated bad guy.
Apparently Hogan didn't wrestle another match for 4 years because that's where Disc 3 takes us and he's facing Mr Perfect Curt Hennig in a small indie promotion and winning. The contrast to the next match couldn't be greater as he is shown losing to the Rock in front of a frenzied, pro-Hogan crowd at Wrestlemania X8 in Toronto. Next we have Hogan climbing out of Doc Brown's Delorian and winning WWE Title No.6 from Triple H a month later at Backlash in one of his best matches.
We then see Hogan teaming up with lifelong fan Edge to win the tag belts from Chuck and Billy in mid 2002. We skip a few years to Hogan's induction into the WWE Hall of Fame and finally to his second last match (unless you count his beating up Khali on the RAW XVth anniversary show), defeating Shawn Micheals at Summerslam 2005 in an entertaining and amusing match in which Micheals oversold every Hogan move. Entertaining end to an entertaining disc.
On this anthology we see the strengths and weaknesses of Hogan as an entertainer in his matches spanning 25 years. He could work a crowd like no other, sell a beating very well, but at the same time he was in some of the worst main event matches ever.
Despite some of the over the top hyperbole from interviewees I found this a fun trip down memory lane. If you don't hate Hogan, you'll love this DVD.
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