Friday, June 14, 2013

Notes on a Classic: BG Enterprise's Young Musclestuds Wrestling 5

Young Musclestuds Wrestling 5 features some of BG Enterprise's hottest looking talent, including Johnny Olson, a young longhaired fighter whose thighs and glutes make me feel a little dizzy (and who, for some reason, I always imagine being blonder than he is, which is to say simply "blond," since he's not blond at all). All four matches have plenty to recommend. What catches my eye right now is the third, featuring Jonathan Bennett, 6', 195# (top picture), going up against hairy heel Johnny Durango, 5'11", 180#. This DVD includes my basic food groups: headlocks, arm bars, body slams, and corner work. I'm satisfied. And the presentation whets the appetite, especially Bennett in shimmery tangerine trunks I just want to sink my teeth into.

As far as I can tell, these guys made only this one appearance at BG. Durango models himself after Ric Flair--he does the woo before every move. He doesn't appear to bear any particular animosity towards Bennett, and he shows no hint of a sadistic streak. As a heel, then, Durango is strictly professional--he grinds Jonathan's forehead across the top rope the way the UPS guy drops packages off at my door. Despite my perhaps uninspired characterization of it, it's a cool, heartless style I like, exemplified by BG East's Jonny Firestorm and other heels whose chill composure belies their ability to make opponents scream. I'm not saying Durango shows no enthusiasm for the work, just that surgically dismantling his opponent is something he does, it seems, mostly for the paycheck.

In fact, surprisingly, it's Jonathan who, given the chance, relishes bringing on the pain, and it's a shame he didn't stick with wrestling long enough to develop his heel potential. He looks like somebody who'd go by the name of "Tex," but his given ring name, "Jonathan Bennett," strikes me as the least likely wrestler name I've come across in forever. To my ear, it resonates of hedge accounting or 1980s sitcom quasi-celebrity. If I were BG, I would have dressed this kid up in chaps and a cowboy hat. Despite periodic "hope" spots, which he performs without embarrassing himself, Jonathan mostly has to suffer whatever abuse Johnny chooses to slather all over his sturdily built (those thighs!) body. At this he is highly satisfying, if not brilliant. I sometimes suspect I'm drawn to flashes in the pan as much for the chance to flesh out entire fantasy careers for wrestlers like Bennett as for their talent in stuffing five ounces of nylon spandex. As if they needed anything more ...

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