Trip back to Dallas’ other drama

Posted on 08. Jun, 2012 by

Next Wednesday, the prime time drama that served as the world’s window to North Texas returns to the small screen with the reboot of the series Dallas.
The drama that brought us “Who shot JR” and a complete season of thinking Bobby Ewing was dead to only find out it was a dream, will feature many of the same characters. But the next generation of Ewings is expected to be front and center.
As I prepared to return to Southfork, I took an opportunity this week to journey back to 1980s Dallas and revisit another part of my childhood — World Class Championship Wrestling.
The story of the rise and fall of this North Texas gem is told in the documentary “The Triumph and Tragedy of World Class Championship Wrestling”.
As an elementary-aged child in the early 1980s, the cheesy storylines and wild action of the WCW was right up my alley. I constantly wanted to wrestle with my older brothers and pretend I was Kevin or Kerry Von Erich.
To a young child, Danny White, Tony Dorsett or Randy White were nothing compared to the Von Erichs. Their high-flying antics and the heroism they showed battling the Fabulous Freebirds made you feel like anything was possible.
Weekend nights were spent watching on television the action from the Sportatorium. It’s been described as a metal shed with few frills, but on television it was magical.
And once a year, the show came to me at Pilot Point’s Massey Stadium. I got a front-row seat to watch Kevin Von Erich whip up on “Gentleman” Chris Adams.
I know from digging through the Messenger archives that the WCW also made a few appearances in Wise County.
What I couldn’t see and glad I couldn’t at the time was the dark side of the WCW with the drugs and steroids that shortened the lives of many of these heroes. Three of the Von Erich brothers committed suicide and David Von Erich also died tragically at a young age.
The Denton County family seemed to be a victim of their own success and the excesses that it brought. Maybe they weren’t too different from what we were led to believe about that other Dallas family on television — the Ewings.

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