Beautiful Ladies of Wrestling
Season 5, Episode 13
Because My Name is Earl wasn’t the first sitcom to do a “clever” pun on the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling name, I give you the Step by Step wrestling episode.
Step by Step was a modern take on The Brady Bunch, which if you’re unfamiliar with that show, was about two single parents, each with three kids of their own, getting married and forcing their kids to live in cramped quarters. Sadly, the closest thing to an even more updated version of that would be Keeping up with the Kardashians.
Because this show started in the early 90’s and lasted until the late 90’s, it wasn’t as wholesome as most TGIF shows. Don’t get me wrong, the life lessons were there and the jokes were still corny as hell, but they tried to be a little edgier, especially when it came to the insults hurled between the older step siblings. One of which was J.T. Lambert, who played the dumb older brother. This was later attributed to him having Dyslexia, despite that only explaining some of his shortcomings and not the fact that he inherited being a goof from his father, Frank Lambert. Besides not being the smartest guys in the room, they were also huge sports fans, which plays a major factor in this episode.
J.T. and Frank are chosen as part of a radio contest to win Super Bowl tickets. So long as they’re willing to show up to a local sports bar dressed as cheerleaders in order to collect the tickets. No big deal, right? Dressing up in drag is a regular sitcom trope. However, when they show up to Dave’s Sports Grill, looking like the Alpha Betas during their gender swapping skit in Revenge of the Nerds, the radio DJ informs the Lamberts that they’ll receive their tickets after they last inside the ring with two Beautiful Ladies of Wrestling. Russo swerve!
Right on cue, a random curtain in the middle of the bar is drawn back to reveal a wrestling ring with two female wrestlers waiting. The DJ introduces the two beautiful ladies as Assault and Battery. Battery, the blonde wrestler, is Charli Haynes, who was an actual legit GLOW wrestler as part of the tag team, Salt and Pepper. The one kind of dressed like Wonder Colette, Assault, is stuntwoman Spice Williams-Crosby. You might remember her as Cincinnati Patti from the Roseanne wrestling episode, “Roseanne-feld.”
The DJ explains the rules, which is simply to survive 10 rounds in the ring. Somebody on the writing staff must’ve been a huge fan of the American Wrestling Federation, or the old World of Sport stuff from England. Frank has second thoughts, but J.T. reminds him that it’s for the Super Bowl. Frank tries to reason with Assault that he doesn’t feel right fighting a woman, and would rather she just hand over the tickets.
But if the recent movement of intergender wrestling matches, and classic sitcoms, have taught us anything, it’s that female wrestlers are very capable of beating the crap out of their male counterparts. Assault tells Frank she’ll flip him for the tickets, basically calling out her move as she proceeds to do exactly what she said, flipping Frank onto his back.
J.T. does the smart thing and tries to powder out of the ring, but is pulled back in and given an airplane spin (the number one high spot in all TV show episodes featuring pro wrestling). While in mid-spin J.T. yells out that he’s going to “die a virgin,” showcasing that edgy Step by Step humor. Meanwhile, Frank is getting pummeled in the corner. They may not be the smartest guys, but the Lamberts sure as hell know how to make their opponents look good. Then again, as is this case with around 75% of TV shows featuring pro wrestling, this match is very much a shoot.
After a commercial break and seven rounds later, Frank and J.T. are still getting their asses handed to them. How do I know? You might say it has to do with Frank being trapped in a full nelson and J.T. getting ready to take a splash from Battery, but that information becomes available thanks to the radio DJ announcing the score. That’s right. Somewhere on the wall, there’s a scoreboard which shows that team BLOW are ahead of the Lamberts, 92 points to 0. Why the hell is anyone scoring this match when the whole objective is to simply last 10 rounds? Who knows? But I’m assuming there’s no referee because Gene LeBell wasn’t available.
The ass whooping continues as Assault clotheslines J.T. and Battery Irish whips Frank into a corner. Like a true heel, J.T. escapes the ring and runs away, leaving Frank to get double teamed. Assault and Battery use the ropes to tie up Frank and give him the ol’ wishbone split. Hopefully, guaranteeing no more Cousin Oliver Syndrome-type pregnancies, like the one that led to Lily Foster-Lambert. Was Cody Lambert not enough?
J.T. gets yanked inside the ring the hard way, as commentators used to say. You know the move. Where one guy is gripping the ropes so tightly, that all you have to do is pull the ropes towards them, then quickly pull back towards you and they magically fly into the ring. How come no one’s doing that anymore?
With only two more rounds to go, Frank calls it quits for his team. The DJ announces Assault and Battery as the winners, which you would think means that they get to go to the Super Bowl. Seeing as the Lamberts were supposed to last the entire 10 rounds. Instead, the DJ still gives the father and son duo the Super Bowl tickets, but with the added caveat that they’ll have to go another round for airfare and hotel accommodations. Frank and J.T. are more than willing to foot the bill as they crawl the hell away from Assault and Battery.
Of course, the DJ says he’s only screwing with them, because radio DJ’s are the worst. So in the end, Frank and J.T. Lambert walk away with an all expenses paid trip to the Super Bowl, and maybe, more importantly, a newfound appreciation and respect for female wrestlers. Or, at the very least, a deep fear of them.