I haven’t repeated the journeys, but I do tend to think of the WCCW one the most fondly. “That son of a bitch is trying to buy my company right after my son died…and I need to know how much.” And the Glen Goza stuff. It was also memorable when they meant to close an episode with a mailbag, but had gotten so pissed at Fritz that they just pulled the plug and ended the episode.
Was Valentine ever actually good? When I was little he seemed to be in his washed up phase and I always thought he was terrible, but the way they talk about him makes it seem like he was once a big star. It's impossible for me to imagine, he just seems super bland and one of those guys with a physique that makes him look perpetually out of shape. On the Bret Hart scale, a 1 for look, 1 for promos/charisma, 3 for wrestling? (this could be generous)
He was generally quite boring. But I wouldn't put him all the way down at 1 for look. I never thought his body was particularly a problem; he looked thick and strong. His face and hair were never at all appealing, and play a significant part in why I think that he just always had to be a heel. But on a 1-10 scale, I'm inclined to give his look something like a 4. That said, Sherri certainly took one for the team for no apparent reason here:
I'd be inclined to give his wrestling a 5 or so, he was likely slightly above average in WWF ringwork at the time but not as good as the good workers of the NWA that were going then as well. Would agree that he's probably a 1 for promos/charisma. So I guess I'd give him a 10 out of a possible 30 on the Bret scale.
That said, I've only seen the Piper/Valentine dog-collar match from the original Starrcade once. I think some people love it; I can't fully remember what I thought of it. That would probably be a decent barometer of "was he ever good?"
Sean Mooney tries to get an interview with Randy Savage after Jake Roberts slaps Elizabeth. As he tries to talk, Savage yells, “SHUT UP!” Mooney pleads by saying, “Randy Savage, I’m just as upset about what took place as you are!” WTF, Mooney. The dude is in a psychotic rage right in front of you about something way more personal to him than you. No, you are not “just as upset” as him.
The best version of Valentine I've ever seen was the 1 hour match against Backlund. Probably one of the top matches I've seen from that era on the network. At least from WWF at that time when most stuff was Bruno doing some combination of punching and kicking that somehow drove the crowd wild.