“And welcome once again to BG Wrestling at Campus in beautiful Cambridge, Massachusetts in the heart of brain country, I guess you would say, halfway between Harvard and MIT.” Announcer and color commentator Bob Wood fills in all the juicy details over the PA system that set the stage for “Live at Campus.” He lets us know who the heels are and why their babyface opponents are motivated to try to conquer them. This classic club footage from a BG East catalog release from 1990 is pro wrestling entertainment that makes impressive use of a dance floor, a mat, and some slack ropes. Five matches comprise this DVD, with some classic, classic athleticism from the likes of Matt Carlton, Tiger Chuck Collins, Kid Leopard, Scott Rogers (before he turned Dark), and the Brooklyn Bodywrecker.
Regular readers here know that I have a running fantasy of live action homoerotic wrestling. I know of no live action homoerotic wrestling venues within several thousand miles of me, so watching classic club wrestling in front of a curious, sometimes enthusiastic crowd of gay guys in Live at Campus revives that lust to watch up close and personal wrestling action.
The crowd that night is a mix of curious gawkers, guys chatting each other up without much interest in the wrestling, and a smattering of hardcore wrestling fans who start showing up later in the card. In the Fallen Angel v Tiger Chuck Collins match, the fans slowly warm up to their role in this scenario. One angry fan, fed up with Collins’ seeming inability to defend himself against his masked opponent, throws trash ontop of Collins while the the tiger-striped-one is getting the crap beat out of him at the start of round 3.
When Kid Leopard and Scott Rogers face off for a title match in the second half of the card, the crowd around the makeshift ring has grown thicker, rowdier, and more attentive. A hot, bearded hunk with big pecs and a sleeveless t-shirt shows up ringside just as the action starts. Like a growing number of the fans gathering ringside, he’s got a look about him that makes me think he’s got to be one of us who enjoys his wrestling kink. He pumps his fist, flexing an impressively thick bicep, and shouts in celebration when KL is introduced as the hometown boy with a bad attitude.
The hot boy with the beard fades into the crowd partway through KL’s successful title defense, but from the moment that the final match is announced, the battle for the “Bruiser Weight Championship Belt,” he’s back and furiously stakes out his claim to a front row, unobstructed view of the action. This action consists of Maine native Terry Mercen, in white trunks and boots and a white satin jacket (Bob Wood gives Terry’s hardworking, straight-up babyface credentials), facing down an astonishingly young, ripped, gorgeous Brooklyn Bodywrecker in red trunks and black boots. BBW is sporting his perennial “fuck ’em up” attitude that he dishes out with relish to his opponent, the announcer, the fans… pretty much anyone and everyone.
Before the match has technically started, BBW ambushes Terry from behind when the Maine grizzly tries to take his white satin jacket off. When BBW starts to choke Terry with it, some heel fans initially cheer, but things quickly quiet down as BBW’s mauling of the man in white is visually simply stunning. After an astonishingly relentless battering of his caught-off-guard opponent, BBW hops to his feet, sets his snarling sights on none other than the hot, bearded hunk in the front row, and points his finger at him. It looks like an aggressive move, but there’s no way to really tell what BBW is saying to the hunk in the crowd. A match dedication, perhaps? A promise to deal with those hot pecs next? Whatever BBW says, the pec boy seems to cheer that much more enthusiastically with every cruel stomp, kick, and slam that BBW delivers. A step-over toe hold looks like it’s about to snap poor Terry’s knee in two, to the rising “ooo’s” and “aaah’s” of the appreciative crowd. A double knee drop to Terry’s hamstrings clearly titillates more than one spectator. “I like that! Give him another one!” an excited voice rises an octave above the crowd.
The boy in the white sleeveless t-shirt, the one with the big pecs and bulging biceps, gets more and more animated as the match progresses. When Terry launches an impressive rally that has BBW reeling in fall 2, the hot stud in the front row gives the ref an earful, complaining about some clearly fictitious rule infraction that the fan believes Terry used to gain the upper hand. But when BBW bounces back from that unexpected 2nd fall pin to grab hold of this match with both hands in fall 3, his #1 fan is literally roaring. Actually roaring, yes. He gives BBW a “thumbs-up” of encouragement to start round 3. When BBW battles back to control the match momentum, pec boy pumps his fists and flexes those meaty biceps encouragingly. Every slam, every kick has the hunk outside the ring cheering and pumping his fists harder. When BBW bodyslams Terry onto the wooden bar tables at ringside, all the heel fans rejoice. His over-the-knee backbreaker on Terry has the muscled hunk in the front row pumping his fists again with a big, toothy smile stretching ear to ear. When BBW cranks out a humiliating final fall submission from Terry, his #1 fan celebrates furiously, reaching over the barrier to slap BBW’s hand in congratulations. When BBW, as is his way, goes back and muscles out a post-victory piledriver on a completely helpless Terry, muscleboy at ringside is laughing and applauding feverishly.
“The bodywrecker has developed quite a little following here this evening,” announcer Bob Wood can’t help but note. “And now he accepts the BG Bruiser Weight Championship belt… holds it high… and accepts the cheers of those in the crowd who seem to favor this sort of wrestling.”
Live action homoerotic wrestling has got to be the sexiest venue possible. When there’s chemistry like the chemistry BBW clearly has with his muscleboy fan in the front row, my arousal skyrockets. The adrenaline rush of the crowd egging on the combatants, the call-and-response between wrestlers and their fully engaged boosters, it all makes the story extend outside of the literal ring. There’s an extra pump from proxy champions fighting it out, carrying the standard, standing for the virility and savvy and will to dominate of everyone on “their side.” Like the hot, bearded boy with the meaty pecs, I’m certainly part of that crowd that “seems to favor this sort of wrestling!”