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Wrestling / Bobo Brazil

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Houston Harris (July 10, 1924 – January 20, 1998) was an American professional wrestler who competed from the 1949 through the 1990s as Bobo Brazil. Trained by Jumping Joe Savoldi Jr, he competed in the WWWF, the AWA, various National Wrestling Alliance territories, All Japan Pro Wrestling, and some other promotions. In particular, he was a HUGE star in Detroit, regularly feuding with the Sheik. Among his in-ring achievements, he was a multiple-time WWWF United States Heavyweight Champion, a 13x NWA (Detroit) United States Heavyweight Champion, and a multiple-time NWA (Detroit) World Tag Team Champion. He was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in the Class of 1994, and was inducted into the Wrestling Observer Newsletter Hall of Fame in 1996.

"Tropo Brazil":

  • Alliterative Name: His ring name, as well as Houston Harris
  • Arch-Enemy: The Sheik.
  • Bash Brothers
    • Sailor Art Thomas, Lord Athol Layton, Bill Miller, The Mongolian Stomper, Tony Marino and Fred Curry in Detroit.
    • Wilbur Snyder, Sandor Szabo, and Primo Carnera in Los Angeles
    • Sweet Brown Sugar and Dusty Rhodes in Florida, Frankie Talaber in Ohio, Chris Carter in Indiana
    • Whipper Billy Watson in Canada
  • Canon Discontinuity
    • His NWA World Title win over Buddy Rogers. This, along with the same happening to Afro Caribs Dominican Jack Veneno and Puerto Rican Carlos Colón, was used for an angle in TNA where Ron Killings tried to get a shot at the same title.
    • His runs as NWA World Tag Team Champion are generally ignored, simply because of how many promoters claimed to be booking the world tag team champions at once
  • Face: Absolutely. Due to all kinds of concerns over what could go wrong if a black wrestler played the heel against anything other than another black wrestler, he was an example of Positive Discrimination being played as straight as humanly possible.
  • Hard Head: His Finishing Move, the Coco Butt
  • Honor Before Reason: He and Bruno Sammartino were among those who failed to win the NWA World Heavyweight Title due to Buddy Rogers claiming illness, injury and groin attacks. Brazil took his word every time, even when he caught on to earlier lies.
  • Ink-Suit Actor: In Tiger Mask.
  • Old Master: To Rocky Johnson.
  • One-Steve Limit: He was NWA United States Heavyweight Champion during his run in Big Time Wrestling in San Francisco and Detroit. Two different promotions with two different belts in two different towns. Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling and Maple Leaf Wrestling also had their own NWA United States Heavyweight Championship belts not in continuity with the other two, that Bobo Brazil also happened to win.
  • Spiritual Successor: Aside from his son Bobo Jr, there was also Bo Bo Brazell in The Bahamas.
  • The Giant: His first gimmick, "The South American Giant", after he was recruited from baseball and still learning to wrestle
  • The Rival: Another baseball player turned pro wrestler, Giant Baba, was his primary rival in Japan, particularly in the JWA over the NWA International Heavyweight Championship belt. To a lesser extent, Korean wrestler Kintaro Ohki after Baba founded All Japan Pro Wrestling.
  • Underwear of Power: It is the most common of pro wrestling ring gear bottoms, although Bobo's were higher up his waist than most examples. He most commonly wore blue but had black, white, green and red to make sure you could always tell Bobo from his opponent.
  • Ur-Example
    • The first African-American to get over big with white audiences. He started only wrestling other black people, but his fans demanded that Bobo face "better" competition.
    • Bobo Brazil and El Mongol vs Mr. Ito and The Great Ota was the first "interracial" match in Atlanta.
  • Wrestling Family: His brother, Hank James, eventual wife, Kathleen Wembley and son, Bobo Brazil Jr, were all wrestlers too.