And here comes the Smasher
The Demolition, walking disaster
Pain and destruction are our middle names"
Demolition is a professional wrestling tag team most prominent during the late 1980s and early 1990s in the WWF. Debuting in January 1987 of an episode of Superstars, Demolition began as the WWF's answer to The Road Warriors. Decked out in studded, leather outfits and black masks (which would be removed to reveal their signature red/silver face paint), Ax and Smash soon became a hugely successful tag team in their own right, winning the WWF Tag Team Championships three times during one of the most prominent eras of the tag division.
The team was made up of Bill Eadie as Ax and Barry Darsow as Smash. note Originally managed by Luscious Johnny V, they eventually settled on Mr. Fuji as their manager. Ax and Smash ran roughshod over the tag division, culminating in their first WWE World Tag Team Championship win at WrestleMania IV, over Strike Force (Rick Martel and Tito Santana). They got even more successful following a Heel–Face Turn, where Mr. Fuji turned on them and joined up with a newly Heel Powers of Pain, leading to a WrestleMania V feud. For the next few years, Demolition were one of the most, if not the most, popular tag teams in the company... until The Road Warriors themselves showed up in the WWF. Combined with a Face–Heel Turn and Bill Eadie's poor health at the time, not even a third member (Brian Adams, a.k.a. Crush) could revive their momentum.
Their last title reign ended at the hands of the Hart Foundation at SummerSlam 1990, and soon the team was simply Smash and Crush. Eadie departed the WWF, while the other two made various attempts to reinvent themselves. Crush completely made over his character for a Heel–Face Turn and actually showed potential as a breakout star as the "Hawaiian" Crush, but then turned heel again to feud with Randy Savage. Meanwhile, Barry Darsow attempted to reinvent himself as the Evil Debt Collector Repo Man, who made little impact other than cartoonish, over-the-top promos and being a longtime favorite of WrestleCrap's RD Reynolds.
In the late 2000s, Eadie and Darsow reunited for some independent shows.
"Tropes and destruction are our middle names!":
- Arch-Enemy: The Powers of Pain (the Warlord and The Barbarian), Tito Santana, the Hart Foundation (Bret "The Hitman" Hart and Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart), the Legion of Doom.
- Bash Brothers
- Blood Knight: Even as faces, the original two were more interested in brawling than anything else. Best shown at the 1989 Royal Rumble where they were entrants #1 and #2, and spared no time beating each other senseless.
- Catchphrase: Smash: "We're gonna kick your stinkin' teeth in!"
- Cool Mask
- Defeating the Undefeatable: During their heyday, the team was pretty much unstoppable, and their first tag team reign, which lasted well over a year and will likely never be topped as the original World Tag Team Title is now defunct, beating the team was pretty much this. Until the Brain Busters (Arn Anderson and Tully Blanchard) knocked them off the mountain, very few had a victory over them.
- Demoted to Extra: When Demolition was at the height of their dominance of the WWF tag team scene in the late 1980s and very early 1990s, many fans who were aware of The Road Warriors were eagerly anticipating a series of matches between these two face-painted, muscle-bound, power brawling tag teams. Once the Road Warriors showed up in the WWF as the Legion of Doom, it never happened, and Demolition seemed to lose much of their prominence. Demolition was starting to lose their edge, in large part due to health problems Bill Eadie was suffering in 1990 (he was looking at retiring from the ring) and Crush – although talented – never quite meshed with Smash. The result, once the Demolition-LOD matches finally took place, was a laughable series of matches that Hawk and Animal easily won.
- Ax himself became this due to his illness. Crush basically replaced him and Ax functioned more as a manager and mentor by the end.
- Early-Installment Weirdness: Aside from a different manager (Luscious Johnny V instead of Mr. Fuji), Smash was originally played by Randy "Moondog Spot" Colley, and their facepaint looked entirely different. See for yourself!
- Expy: The whole team were explies of the Road Warriors. This became an issue when the Roadwarriors eventually showed up in WWE in 1990, and Demolition accused them of ripping them off.
- Face/Heel Double-Turn: With the Powers of Pain at the 1988 Survivor Series. This came about as Demolition started getting cheered, to the point where, despite being pushed as heels, were the most popular tag team in the WWF, due to their charisma, fan interaction (Bill Eadie and Barry Darsow always enjoyed interacting with fans, even when pushed as monster heels) and legit in-ring abilities. The Powers of Pain — obstensibly brought in by Tito Santana to gain revenge over Demolition injuring Rick Martel earlier in the year — was only getting a lukewarm response from fans, despite being pushed as faces. So, a storyline was devised where Mr. Fuji was becoming frurstrated that Ax and Smash were no longer listening to him or taking his advice, and Fuji saw two rivals who not only needed expert guidance but might be willing to listen, and it unfolded at the Survivor Series.
- Facial Markings
- Finishing Move: The Demolition Decapitation, which is a backbreaker designed to hold the opponent so the teammate can hit an elbow drop onto the poor guy's throat. Crossed with The Artifact, since The Moondogs (Rex [Randy Colley] and Spot [Larry Latham, real name Larry Booker]) had been using that same move as their finisher.
- Hell-Bent for Leather: Well, duh.
- Hot-Blooded: Smash, especially.
- Irony: Referred to the newly-arrived Legion of Doom as "second-rate imposters." Um...yeah.
- Malicious Misnaming: After their face turn, they began referring to their (then) former manager Mr. Fuji as "Fuj the Stooge".
- Names to Run Away from Really Fast: It would be hard not to feel fear from a team named Demolition and whose members are named after violent actions; Ax, Smash, and Crush.
- No Indoor Voice: As was common during the era, Ax and Smash basically yelled every word they spoke.
- Parts Unknown: Where else would they be from?
- Power Stable: Became this with the addition of Crush. Somewhat of a subversion in that it was usually Smash and Crush in the role thanks to a real life illness from Bill Eadie, who eventually dropped out of sight entirely.
- Prepare to Die: From the theme song:"Better say your Act of Contrition"
- I Have Many Names:
- Barry Darsow in particular was this trope in spades. He's wrestled under his real name, Krusher Khrushchev, the aforementioned Repo Man, the Blacktop Bully (a trucker gimmick), and "Mr. Hole-in-One" Barry Darsow (an infamous golfer gimmick that was initially going to have him go by the name Stewart Pain, but due to Payne Stewart's [the golfer who inspired the name] death in a freak plane crash, he went by his real name instead).
- Crush would avert this by keeping the same name through various gimmicks, such as "Hawaiian" Crush, evil, face-painted Crush (managed by Mr. Fuji), ex-convict Nation of Domination member Crush, and biker leader of the Disciples of the Apocalypse Crush, even though his name came from Demolition's Theme Naming of it members being named after violent actions (the other two being Ax and Smash).
- Ax started as Bolo of the Mongols before starting his most successful non-Demolition gimmick as the Masked Superstar. He was also Super Machine, one of the original three Machines with Giant Machine (Andre, of course) and Big Machine (Blackjack Mulligan.)
- Wrestling Monster: Ax, Smash and Crush all fit this.