Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Way Back WhensDay: Tuesday Night Titans

Tuesday Night Titans
Photo courtesy: WWE
By Kevin Hunsperger
@kevinhunsperger & @my123cents

Long before Monday Night Raw, the WWF had a weekly cable show called Tuesday Night Titans.  It was talk show meets wrestling, with all kinds of ridiculousness along the way.  I remember tuning in each week and watching on the USA Network as Vince McMahon (not knowing he owned the company at the time) and Lord Alfred Hayes would interview Superstars, managers, and audience members. (Eventually "Mean" Gene Okerlund would become host.)

Macho Man & Mean Gene
Photo courtesy: WWE
The show started even before Prime Time Wrestling started airing on Mondays. The only WWF fix we'd get back then was Superstars on Sunday mornings and TNT on Tuesday nights.  MTV aired a couple of WWF specials, but this was before Saturday Night's Main Event or even pay per view matches.  TNT's format was like the Tonight Show, with silly skits and an occasional match or at least highlights from one to help keep ongoing storylines alive.

How now, brown cow.
I was 11 years old when I started watching, and for whatever reason the episode that sticks out in my mind the most was the night Captain Lou Albano and Vince McMahon visited a shock therapist to help "cure" George "The Animal" Steele.  This was right after Animal turned good and was being made into a lovable character and not the brutal beast he once was.

McMahon was on hand to document the treatment and what George was going through.  Captain Lou talked us through the procedure as Doctor Sigmund Ziff hooked up the Animal.  Finally to show us it was working, Steele uttered the following with a glazed look in his eyes, "How now, brown cow."  I can still hear him saying it and the "breakthrough" the Captain thought he'd reached, until Ziff turned up the juice and the Animal ran from the room.

Crocket & Tubbs? 
Other memorable moments was the introduction of the show "Fuji Vice" with Mr. Fuji and Don Muraco.  It was cheesy 80's fun, as the manager and Superstar spoofed the popular show Miami Vice.  The two did parodies of other 80's programming as well.  Roddy Piper had an experience with the Ghosts of Christmas and Kamala "ate" a live chicken on the air one week.  The show was crazy, but it was good fun.

I wonder now that the network is in full swing if the WWE will consider doing more programming like Tuesday Night Titans.  They certainly have the talent to pull it off.  They could also show the classic episodes, which I imagine is a real possibility.

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