Thursday, February 29, 2024

Leap Day: The 'Quantum Leap' Wrestling Episode

 What is the point in having a Complete Series Boxset if you never watch it.

On this day that we only get once every 4 years, let's pay some love to Quantum Leap...

In 1991, Pro Wrestling was on a down swing.  Regardless, we got an Episode about it in Season 3, Episode 20.

Let's lock up!
Sam leaps into a 1950's Wrestler, whose gimmick is a Fake Russian.  
At least he's not a Fake Nazi like Fritz Von Erich.

He improvises and gives TV Viewers a Trouble in Paradise.
He figures out what is going on...

His Brother is his Partner and his Mom is the Manager.

They want a Title Shot, which was apparently the dead Dad's dream.
The problem- the Brother has a not-diagnosed heart condition and will die (or did in the original Timeline) if he wrestles.

What is Sam to do?
He finally manages to figure out what exactly his issue is- he got sick as a kid and it damaged his heart.

He won't listen to Mom, however.
After all, he wouldn't listen to his One Scene Only Wife and Kid.
In the B-Plot, Sam is caught in a triangle with the wife of opponent (Terry Funk) and the Funker himself.

The guy wants to legit kill Sam, but he also has to keep the Brother out of the ring.

Cut to a montage of Sam being beaten up by Terry Funk for what they say is an hour.

Even in the '50s, that seems a bit much- especially since this supposedly ran on TV.

Anyhow, Sam pulls off Chekhov's Sleeper Hold to win the Titles.
The Brother doesn't die.  The End.
A good Episode, even if I was hoping for more Wrestling.  I was probably expecting too much.

To be fair, you are rewarded with lots of Funk highlights, from a body slam to an Atomic Drop to a Piledriver.  You can also see in the slow motion how Funk keeps a hand on Sam's back to make sure that his body doesn't fall onto him.

Kayfabe lives!

The actual meat of the Episode is nice.  Everyone gets a moment or two to shine.  
The Wife is great, so it is a shame how much they shortchange her.  Aw.
Funk is great fun here, playing up a real '80s Movie Villain (which he played a few times).

Shout out to Jean-Pierre Dorleac work as Costume Designer- he really nailed the 1950's aesthetic.

Is this a great representation of 1950's Territory Wrestling?  Probably not.  
Would anyone in 1991 know this?  Would anyone in 2024 care?  Nah.

Kudos for making the most of not getting Stan Hansen as Funk's partner by getting his Stunt Double...
***When in doubt, hire a Stan Hansen double***

A really nice Episode that doesn't give you lots of Wrestling.  It was 1991, so what was I really expecting though?

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