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Everything posted by SirSmUgly

  1. It was really two bad games considering Agents of Mayhem, but I sense that whatever billion dollar deal fell through for Embracer Group pretty much sealed things for Volition unless SR was a huge hit. I'm pretty certain that the SR reboot did solid enough numbers, but yeah, video games are like movies now where everything needs to hit for a trillion dollar profit or it wasn't worth making.
  2. Thunder Interlude – show number fourteen – 16 April 1998 "The WCW Gang never tires of outros, video packages, or nWo segments in general” I’m not sure how I feel about Spring Stampede, which comes up after this Thunder…Some of the midcard looks pretty good…Bret Hart being elevated to the main event is great, even if he's not currently on the card itself…On the other hand, that main event scene is a mess…Largely, it’s because the nWo isn’t particularly compelling…And of course, Piper is wrestling at that show…I’m not sure the bat match stipulation is going to do much to save that tag match… Randy Savage and Kevin Nash versus Sting and Bret Hart is the main event…Is Savage actually going to work on a busted knee?... Buff Bagwell gets a video package…Buff pulls a “Narcissist” Lex Luger with a full-length mirror…He’s in love with himself, obviously…My head canon is that this feud between Buff and Luger is because they’re so alike, they’re naturally competitive with one another…When they finally figure out they should have been friends all along, we get Totally Buff…That’s long-term character development that I think accidentally exists… Buff comes to the ring with Vincent…He picks up his rivalry with Rick Steiner…We’re one week out from a return match in which Rick shoot breaks Buff’s neck…I’m dreading that episode…Besides it obviously being terrible that Buff gets hurt, I also think it’s sort of a shame that this feud got cut short…Buff needs work in his control segments, as good as he is at general heeling…It’s weird to think Bagwell’s been on TV for about seven years, but still needs quite a bit of seasoning…He was only, what 21 when he first got on TV?...He’s still not even thirty in 1998 (and isn’t even 55 today), which is weird to think about…This match is more entertaining because Rick stays on offense for most of it…Scotty comes down and attacks Rick to keep him from hitting the top-rope bulldog…Luger comes out for the save, setting up next week’s fateful bout… Hulk Hogan cuts a shitty over-the-top promo in the outro about how much Randy Savage and Sting stink and are bad… Kevin Nash promos about Hulk Hogan…He calls Hogan a “turd”…Nash has been sort of a bummer on the mic lately…Nash thinks he should be WCW World Champion right now…He blames Hogan for his not being champ…He is also not a fan of the Hitman nosing his way into the picture…Nash drops the old Jim Croce quote about spitting in the wind, tugging on Superman’s cape, etc., with one addition about not messing with Nash…Nash puts Hogan on notice that if the bat match goes wonky, the nWo as we know it is over…We can all only hope…Nash plans to put the beats on Piper and Giant at Spring Stampede no matter what Hogan does…. I’m still not buying the Hogan/Nash friction…I have said this before, but the reason for Nash shifting his support from Hogan to Savage was a mild disagreement about which of their shared enemies to beat up first…I still think that having a weak core for this part of the angle is having a negative effect on this whole, long, drawn-out nWo split… We get a minute-long Goldberg video package…Let’s see if the Goldberg match directly after is shorter or longer than the video package that preceded it…Barry Darsow is tonight’s victim…I think he might have been a victim once before, but I don’t care to look back right now and see…Tenay notes that Goldberg and Kevin Greene know one another and were very into the idea of doing some pro graps…I’m all for more ex- (or current) football players getting into professional wrestling…Goldberg probably takes about fifteen seconds longer than the video package lasted, but he has zero issues with Darsow… Ew, Hogan’s on the outros this show…Definite downgrade from even those somewhat mopey Hitman outros from Nitro…Hogan’s mad at Nash’s promo from earlier… Video package for Raven/DDP…Man, this feud needed more promos and fuckery on Nitro and Thunder…I’ve really, really enjoyed it, but I could go for more promos from both guys… Tony S. talks to J.J. Dillon…Dillon is the worst guy to make announcements because he’s so fucking boring as a personality…I know he’s working as an executive mouthpiece, but still, have some charisma…Anyway, he announces that the winner of DDP/Raven at Spring Stampede will have to defend the U.S. Championship against Goldberg on Nitro the next night…On cue, and in contrast to the appearance of Goldberg himself earlier on, it gets a shockingly subdued pop…Dillon fucking sucks in this role… Booker T. defends the WCW Television Title against…Rick Fuller?!...Fuller does press his size advantage a bit…Booker isn’t ever in too much danger, even though Fuller sneaks a two-count off a powerslam…I still probably would have had Booker do a smidge less selling, though…Booker lands a nasty spinebuster, which spells the start of a series of offensive moves that ends in a missile dropkick and a three… Hogan’s on the outro again…He repeats most of the same stuff he said before about Savage and Sting…I cannot believe they’ve got the Disciple all up in the videos standing in the back, arms crossed, like he’s some kind of badass… Now we get a Nash/Hogan video package…This is overkill and it’s not going to do much to help bolster a weak feud…Tony S. is in the interview spot again to announce a newly-signed Spring Stampede match…Lex Luger and Rick Steiner versus Buff Bagwell and Scott Steiner…Buff and Scotty are unhappy about this and crash Tony’s announcement…Buff would like to see legal papers that show this match is happening, or he refuses to show up for it…Scotty claims that Tony and a few other WCW folks have poisoned Rick’s mind against him…Buff: “What would [Scotty’s] parents say about this?!”…They declare that they won’t be participating in this match…Tony’s like Don’t get mad at me, I just announce the matches, I don’t make ‘em… Scott Norton shows up, Vincent at his side, to face Chris Benoit…Benoit warms up the ol’ chop machine on Vincent at ringside before hopping in to tackle Norton…Norton’s forehead is busted open early…These dudes just do everything with intensity…Norton just beats the shit out of Benoit…He and Benoit chop each other furiously just for the heck of it…Norton dominates this match, basically, until finally Benoit ducks a lariat and Norton’s arm hits the ringpost…No, wait, Norton gets back in the ring and dominates some more without selling the arm or missing a beat…Benoit finally hits the triple Germans for what is the first move that Norton sells all match…Norton tries a shoulderblock, but eats the ringpost again…Benoit locks on the Crossface…Vincent hops up and Benoit breaks it to punch him…Benoit gets Norton back in the Crossface…Vincent finally hops in and spurs a DQ…The nWo members leave when Booker runs out to clear them off…Benoit shoves Booker away again because Benoit’s a dick…Uh, what was the point of Benoit getting killed like this?...The point of a gatekeeper like Norton is that he eats up the guys beneath him so it means more when he shows vulnerability to an opponent whom the booker is giving an actual push... Oh no…Tony S. is in the ring to interview Roddy Piper…Piper rides the Giant’s shoulders to the ring…OK, Piper has a decent line where he calls his team with the Giant a modern-day David and Goliath, except that they've traded in the slingshot for a baseball bat…I mean, sure, David and Goliath contested their feud against one another, but it still worked…It’s almost all downhill from there…Another tortured Pee-Wee Herman reference/shitty insult…Piper claims that the Stone Cold Stunner he ate on Nitro was merely a mild chiropractic adjustment…That’s because Ed Leslie hit you with it and not Steve Austin…Austin might’ve killed you with his superior version, you creaky old fuck…Piper bookends the promo with another decent line…”We’ll bring the bats, you bring the balls”…Look, when graded on a curve, this was a decent promo for Piper… Super Calo versus Curt Hennig is theoretically a Thunder-ass Thunder match with some unique matchup promise…But in practice, Hennig is a total bummer at this point…Rude’s doing his whole “go over and crash commentary" thing again…I’m over all this…Oh no, Hennig’s got Davey Boy in a match at Spring Stampede…That sounds like the wrestling match version of Sominex…This match exists and ends with a Hennig PerfectPlex... Hogan’s hating on DDP in the outro now…Hey, Page is soon moving on from the U.S. Championship, and I, for one, am ready to see him move up a level… Chavo Guerrero Jr. is flanked by Eddy once more…Chavo's up against Chris Jericho…Chris Jericho and Eddy Guerrero in the same place, at the same time, both heeling it up?...That’s the kind of television that I do these reviews for…Eddy yells at Chavo for struggling early…Chavo hits a hot streak of offense…Jericho rolls through a Chavo victory roll attempt and locks on the Lion Tamer…Chavo crawls to the ropes, but Eddy slaps Chavo’s hand away from the ropes twice…Haha, he did that like Chavo was trying to reach for the last cookie on the plate…Chavo is forced to tap…Eddy puts his towel over his head in shame and embarrassment…Jericho won’t break the Lion Tamer until Prince Iaukea runs out and clobbers him over the head with a scale (it makes sense in context)…Iaukea batters Jericho all the way to the back while Eddy runs Chavo down on the mic back in the ring…Chavo thinks he could have won that match…Eddy’s response to that claim: *hits Chavo in the head with the mic twice* HELLLOOOOOO…Eddy offers to let Chavo out of their deal if Chavo beats Ultimo Dragon at Spring Stampede…However, Eddy promises to be even more of a dick, if that’s possible, if Chavo loses… Bleh…Bischoff, Hogan, and Disciple come to the ring because we haven’t had enough of Hogan’s blathering already…He calls Nash a “big spoon”…The fuck?!...He basically flips the “one more chance” thing around on Nash…Hogan brags about being on Jay Leno…Oh no, is the Leno thing going to happen soon?... We’ve had a couple of those Bret Hart outros from Nitro mixed in as well…I like outros, but Nitro never utilized them as well as they did in the early months of the show… Oh goodness, now J.J. Dillon is back out here to re-announce the Goldberg title shot thing, and no one pops at all…It didn’t work again...What could possibly be the common denominator?…Now, he’s reassuring everyone that the Buff/Scotty vs. Rick/Luger tag match set for Stampede will happen…Finally, he announces that Page, Nash, and Hogan could possibly be subbed in for the injured Randy Savage in the title match at Spring Stampede…Dillon demands a doctor’s release from Savage…This is kinda dumb…Savage has a cast on, which is what apparently worries Dillon and the executive committee…But he’s clearly limping badly whenever he walks…I get that the cast gives a visual notice to the crowd, but just put him on crutches and, you know, milk the injury he actually has…He can still use a crutch as a weapon...Savage yells at Dillon about having better parking lot security instead of taking his title shot away…Dillon says that if Savage doesn’t have the release and/or still has the cast on at Spring Stampede, he’s out of the match…Savage chooses to disagree…He’s still over as a tweener rebel, by the way…This injury came at an awful time for him… The Giant is back here to wrestle…Piper’s at his side…The Giant's wrestling Crush tonight…Uninspired clubbering by Crush…Giant takes this thing over and beats down Crush…Vincent jumps in for about the fifteenth time tonight and draws a DQ…the B-Teamers run down, but Giant fights them all off…He gets no help from Piper…Ric Flair could tell you a little something about expecting help from Roddy Piper when the nWo runs in… Short Raven video package…How about if the man shows up and cuts a lengthy promo tonight on top of this?... Perry Saturn, with Billy Kidman tagging along, comes to the ring to squash Silver King…Nice DDT counter from King when Saturn ducks down…King tries a moonsault and lands on his feet when Saturn steps aside…Saturn then clobbers the slightly disoriented King with a clothesline…Saturn hits a super capture suplex (!!!) and transitions that into the Rings of Saturn for the win…Fun minute-long squash!... Short DDP video package…How about if the man shows up and cuts a lengthy promo tonight on top of this?...Oh wow, we actually get that, as Tony S. is in the ring to interview Page…Page is distracted by the possibility of facing Goldberg and doesn’t even want to address Raven right now…My head canon says that Page loses the Raven match because he’s looking ahead…Note that he’s got a potential Goldberg match for the U.S. title AND a possible substitution into the Spring Stampede main event against Sting taking up space in his head…Page wants to know if Goldberg can get banged (probably pretty easily considering that he's a strapping, successful gentleman)…Page answers my above point by saying that he’s not looking past Raven…You can SAY that, Page, but I don’t know if I believe you…Page plans to take his gold back from Raven at Spring Stampede… The tag main event is next…Well, Savage gets in the ring to start, but he immediately tags out to Nash…Nash and Hart throw fists at one another…This is some quality intense clubbering from these two…Now Nash slows it down with elbows and chokes…Bret makes a comeback with a diving clothesline…He tags in Sting…Nash works out of a jam and tags Savage…Huh, maybe Savage didn’t totally bust his knee. I thought he blew an ACL at some point, but maybe this was a less-severe knee injury that he could work through for a couple months…I’d put off surgery, too, were I in his spot right now…Savage spends about thirty seconds in the ring before he escapes the Scorpion Deathlock and tags out again… Nash wants the Hitman back in the ring, which, yeah, that matchup is always excellent…They mix it up again…It’s pretty fun…Bret dodges an elbowdrop and wraps Nash in the Sharpshooter…Nash goes to the eyes and Savage gets in a blow from his spot on the apron…Nash gets Bret in a sleeper, but Bret turns out of it quickly and hits a back suplex…Bret gets the hot tag to Sting…Sting goes bananas and hits the legal man Savage with a Stinger Splash before Nash drops him with a lariat…Nash dispatches Hart, but Sting dropkicks Nash over the top and to the apron…Sting tries to hit Savage with another Stinger Splash, but Savage clocks Sting with his cast as Sting leaps in…Savage goes up top for the Savage Elbow, but Hogan and Disciple run down and shove him off the top…Nash gets in Hogan’s face and the nWo runs down to break up their little tiff…Good match, even with the fuck finish…I winced at Savage landing almost flat-footed on the mat after he was shoved from behind, though… If this Thunder had done a bit more to center the midcarders and a bit less Hogan/Nash-focused stuff, it would have been great…It was still a decent show, though…It gets a WOOOO from me…
  3. So what I got from that Faulkner-esque stream of consciousness from Matt D is that Rollins is fucking terrible and that Casey is a solid dude and poster. Yeah, that seems about where I'd land, too!
  4. Show #137 – 13 April 1998 "The one where Bret Hart finally gets something interesting to do” So, the last time we were watching Nitro, Roddy Piper challenged Hulk Hogan to a match on Nitro, and we see video of Piper’s challenge (with requisite out-of-place RuPaul mention). I am reminded of how much I am not feeling the main event scene. We’re in the home of Prince Rogers and Sean Waltman tonight. About the latter, it’s too bad he’s not here! He really was a noticeable loss to the nWo as much as he was a key addition to DeGeneration-X. At least this week, I understand why the crowd chants for Larry Z. I’m super into Fit Finlay/Scott Steiner. Finlay’s not on TV enough for my tastes. Vincent’s here too as Scotty’s hype man/second. Weirdly, Larry Z. argued that Scotty has changed because before he joined the nWo, he didn’t need to rely on anyone. Odd, since he was part of a famous tag team in which he absolutely needed to rely on someone. There are a bunch of nWo fans facing the hard camera who are VERY into Scotty’s act. Scotty storms out of the ring to yell at Larry Hennig, which sure is something considering that Curt’s in the nWo with him! It does help establish Scotty’s hair-trigger temper as a defining character trait, though. Scott hits a nice belly-to-belly early and then a great wheelbarrow suplex from the second rope before locking on the Steiner Recliner in what is essentially a squash victory. Oh no, it’s a Bret Hart outro where he talks about getting SCREWED and how he’s the sheriff of not gettin’ SCREWED in WCW now. I don’t like whiny, mopey Bret Hart in WCW. Make him excellent, crafty pro wrestler in the main event Bret Hart instead. Gene Okerlund shills the ol’ hotline. He, like Larry Z., notes his connection to the area. Zbyszko follows up by talking fondly of the old AWA while Lenny Lane and Ultimo Dragon come to the ring before a match. Lane’s heeling tonight. He’s got a lot of energy, even if he’s bang average as a worker. It goes a long way. Lane gets heel control after an opening Dragon flurry and, after a flash pin attempt from Dragon gets two, reasserts control by dropping Dragon across the top rope. This is a solid heel work from Lane, who actually draws a LENNY SUCKS chant from the crowd because he’s making sure to do typical heel stuff like celebrating after moves and squawking at the fans. Good for him, honestly. This crowd is excited for wrestling, but I’ve seen hot crowds take a breather during matches like this before. Lane does his pre-requisite high-risk move that looks terrible, but Dragon saves the spot by booting Lane in the gut. This is actually a fun little match that’s broken out here, with the structure being that Lane keeps stuffing Dragon’s counter attempts and hitting high-impact moves. Lane gets two on a powerslam and two on a face crusher, but Dragon hops out of a vertical suplex attempt and locks on the Dragon Sleeper for the win. Attention, wrestlers: Don’t try to hit Dragon with a vertical suplex! It’s not quite “don’t try to hit Kidman with a powerbomb,” but it’s not that far off. We get another Bret outro/interview in which he is tired of not getting world title shots and would prefer that someone give him a freaking world title shot already. Gene Okerlund interviews Roddy Piper, the latter of whom makes a Nash/Hogan match for later tonight. He threatens Hogan, who jumps him midway through the interview. The Disciple tags along and hits a shitty Stone Cold Stunner on Piper to end the interview. Did I mention that this show's use of main eventers bums me way out? The Giant comes to the ring to interview with Gene Okerlund next. Giant calls Disciple a Grizzly Adams wannabe. That’s more of a Piper or Hogan-level reference, buddy. The Giant is irritated that Piper got his ass beat, but he is undeterred by said ass-beating. He threatens to stick a baseball bat up someone’s ass at Spring Stampede, but in a PG way. Specifically, It's Nash. He wants to stick the bat up Nash’s ass, I think. Man, get back to the wrestling please because these interviews have been a struggle on everyone’s parts. Next up: Public Enemy. Aw, come on, man. No wait, it’s just Johnny Grunge. Chavo Guerrero Jr. is out to face him, and he’s unexpectedly alone tonight as well. This is actually pretty solid as a match because they work it simply, based around Chavo’s speed against Grunge’s bulk. Chavo’s speed is enough for him to physically dominate Grunge a bit, too. Chavo hammers Grunge’s head into the buckles, puts him on the mat, and goes up top for a sunset flip. Unfortunately for Chavo, Grunge has the size to resist it, then drop down on Chavo’s shoulders for three. That was alright. Bret outro. He hopes Nash and Hogan destroy one another. I disagree because I need Hogan to stick around long enough for that long-awaited match against the Hitman. I know that’s getting booked ASAP! Kevin Nash is going to cut an interview now. Oh man, too many interviews. The wrestling has been fun so far! Let’s have more of that instead! If I’m wary of Nash cutting a promo, I think it says something about how done with all these promos that I am. Nash claims that Hogan left the arena after beating up Piper just to duck Nash, which the crowd appears to believe based on their roaring approval. Nash claims that Piper is GAY like "Faith" singer George Michael is GAY, pretty much, in what is a lame Piper-esque attempt at an insult. Then, he runs down Randy Savage for not being at the show. Nash wants a rematch for Sting’s World Championship tonight after last week’s match was spoiled by Hogan. Sting jogs down with a baseball bat to meet the challenge, but now J.J. Dillon is out here to stop us having our fun. Sting grabs the mic and seems excited about bashing Nash’s head in for a title match tonight. Sting even gives Nash the bat just so that he can beat Nash up and take it back by force. Dillon says it’ll have to wait for the main event. Then Sting says, and I quote: “I’m tired of you bitching about that STUPID powerbomb!” Badass, Sting! Sting wants the powerbomb reinstated, and Dillon allows it to be legal for tonight’s title match. Sting crotch chops at Nash and stalks out. Now, Sting needs to get a clean win over someone else in the main event at this point because DDP doesn't really count yet, so if it were me booking this, I’d have Sting win it clean. Of course, I’m not sure I’d have made this match for this Nitro or the previous one in the first place. Glacier does his whole gymnastics routine, but that ain’t gonna prepare him for a beatdown from Chris Benoit tonight. This match poses the question of whether Benoit or Glacier has the more devastating strikes. Well, you won’t be surprised by the answer! Anyway, Glacier is pretty bad! His control segment stinks and he barely clears a leapfrog. Benoit hits a release German to end that segment. Glacier gets control after ducking a strike and hitting a leg sweep, but a comparison of his heel work to Lenny Lane’s earlier heel work isn't kind. This match stinks, but thankfully, it’s not much longer because Benoit snaps on a Crippler Crossface out of nowhere when Glacier tries to bring Benoit to standing. This match should have been three minutes of Benoit guzzling Glacier instead of three minutes of Benoit mostly selling for Glacier’s offense. We get recaps of Buff Bagwell challenging Lex Luger and Luger, Rick Steiner, and Arn Anderson facing off with Eric Bischoff and Scott Steiner, all from the previous week’s Thunder. Rick Steiner suplexed Bisch on the floor in what felt like a random-ass segment. Buff is here (w/Eric Bischoff and Eric Bischoff’s injured back) to have that match with Lex Luger. Buff cuts a pre-match promo in which he wishes that he’d challenged Rick Steiner instead of Lex Luger considering Rick’s attack on Bisch that occurred after his initial challenge to Luger. This means we’re going into that Buff/Rick Steiner feud that’s going to end with Buff catching a bad neck injury. Oh man, I need to remind myself the exact date of that show so I can mentally prep for it. That injury and the Sid injury are the ones that I’m gonna need prep time for before I watch them again. I am praying that Sin and the Nitro/Thunder after Sin have had the video of said injury excised on the Network. Buff opens up on Luger when Luger finally gets to the ring; he keeps early control, using his speed advantage to stay on top of Luger. Luger finally catches Buff, which is bad news for Bagwell as Luger uses atomic drops to control. Luger then clotheslines Buff to the floor, and in a great spot, Buff asks Bischoff who the fuck hit him while in a fog of concussed confusion. Buff is such a good comical cocky heel. Luger does the shittiest version of Buff’s dance that I’ve ever seen, which is also funny. Back in the ring, Buff stuffs a Luger set of punches in the corner and gets control once again. Here’s where Buff badly needs work – he’s just not good in control for very long. He’s pretty quickly got a terrible looking chinlock on. He tries to do some interesting stuff, like yanking at Luger’s eyes, but he’s just not an interesting heel control wrestler. Luger explodes back into control with lariats, a back body drop, and a bionic elbow. Luger racks Buff, and Bisch jumps in and kicks Luger to draw a DQ, which leads to Luger racking Bischoff. Scotty Steiner runs in to save Bischoff, and eventually, Scotty and Buff double up on Luger until Rick Steiner runs in to save the babyface. This was ultimately entertaining, but Bischoff is on TV way too much at this point. Outro: Bret Hart suggests to Randy Savage that he leave the nWo entirely because the nWo are total dicks, man, total dicks. Nutty-ass Super Calo comes to the ring, and while he sort of stinks, he also does at least one wild thing a match, typically. Calo does some iffy dancing before the match. Hey, it’s Chris Jericho! It’s well into hour number two before Jericho showed up, which is a mistake as he is EASILY the best thing on Nitro right now, even beyond Goldberg squashing dudes. He rips signs, blows kisses to the crowd, and generally acts like a jackass. He grabs a mic before the match and claims that Super Calo is actually “Prince Nakamaki” wearing a Calo costume. Jericho demands that Calo have his mask removed to prove that he’s actually (not) Calo, and then goes so far as to insult Calo’s “pidgin Spanish,” Basically, Jericho is a raging asshole. Jericho jumps an upset Calo from behind and gets two off an arrogant pin. The crowd chants JERICHO SUCKS; Jericho responds by pleading C’MON, DON’T DO THIS TO ME and then asking Scott Dickinson to shut the fans up. Calo gets two off a flash pinfall attempt, but Jericho re-takes control with a mafia kick and wraps on a chinlock. That doesn’t last long, as Jericho hits a series of moves, culminating in a gutwrench suplex. Jercho pins with his knee on Calo’s throat, which is a choke, so the ref won’t count the pinfall. Jericho throws a tantrum, and maybe that throws him off because Calo makes a comeback immediately after. Calo runs up the ropes and almost blows it before hitting a missile dropkick that seemed to absolutely stick Jericho, whew. Calo hits a crossbody from the top rope to the floor, then goes up one more time after tossing Jericho into the ring. Jericho cuts him off, but Calo dumps him to the mat and…whiffs on a headscissors attempt. Oops. Jericho locks on the Walls for the win and only takes it off when Prince Iaukea runs him off. Jericho, pretending to be astonished that Calo is not Iaukea: I DIDN’T KNOW PRINCE NAKAMAKI HAD A TWIN BROTHER. What a DICK. Outro: Bret respects some WCW dudes. Chris Benoit, the Giant, and especially Sting. If Sting ever needs some help, Bret says he’ll be there to help him. Van Hammer and Saturn had some beef last Thunder, IIRC, and no, I’m not going back to check. It was one of the previous week’s shows. They’re going to fight it out in an official match next. Kidman tries to stop them, but he gets punched. I think that somewhere in Hammer is a decent, if not good, big man, but he never quite put it all together for one reason or another. This match is sort of messy, but I genuinely like it. Hammer hits Saturn with a high-angled back suplex that looks pretty nasty! Hammer also airplane spins Saturn out of a backslide attempt and then hits him with a lariat. I mean, there’s some neat stuff in here! Saturn hits a mafia kick, hits a Gargoyleplex (it’s the capture suplex he does, but apparently it has a weird name according to Tenay), and then locks on the Rings of Saturn to settle that score. Rocco Rock is going to wrestle a singles match of his own against Goldberg. I suspect that Rocco won’t be as successful as his tag partner was earlier in the night. Rocco is frustrated at not being able to use his bulk effectively. There’s a cool spot where Goldberg wins a shoulderblock; Rocco gets up and demands that he try him with a shoulderblock again. Goldberg looks at him for a beat and then just slugs him, hahaha. Goldberg doesn’t have time for your silly shoulderblock stalemate shit. Rocco gets some control after Goldberg really badly telegraphs a haymaker, and in a cool spot, Rocco dropkicks Goldberg into the stairs at ringside. In the ring, Rocco stands a table up in the corner, and OF COURSE, Goldberg is up and in the ring, where he spears Rocco through the table – it rules – and then Jackhammer and SPLAT, and that’s it. Fun squash match! Goldberg gets up and faces off with Saturn, who stalks to the ring, but Raven runs out and restrains Saturn. Kidman and Sick Boy run in on Goldberg and get utterly destroyed. Goldberg declares that Saturn is officially next. This ruled. Lots of commentary talking the main event angle into the ground, lots of dancing, lots of Nitro party video stuff, etc., etc. Sonny Onoo walks Yuji Nagata out to the ring; Nagata will face Curt Hennig (w/Rick Rude). Ick. Rude wanders over to commentary as usual, though just to point out that there’s a special guest in the arena. That guest: Rick Rude’s dad is here, sitting next to Larry Hennig and looking like a cross between his son and Dr. Jerry Buss. But actually, this match is alright because Hennig and Nagata are trying a bit harder since the dads are in the front row. Nagata gets a wheelbarrow suplex in there, but Rude runs a distraction and Hennig gets right back on top. Hennig hits a big elbow a la his pops, then sets up for a PerfectPlex. Instead, he dumps Nagata, outside and holds him up in front of Larry H., who doesn’t bother to even throw a punch. Pops just rips off his sweater to show a HENNIG RULES shirt. After that, yeah, that’s when Curt H. drops Nagata with a PerfectPlex for the win. There’s a post-match handcuffing of Nagata with a requisite beatdown before Jim Neidhart runs the nWo members off. This whole feud stinks, but that was the least offensive of any of the Rude/Hennig/Hart Foundation segments in many weeks. La Parka (w/chair) takes on Booker T. for the Television Championship. Parka tries his best to control with strikes, but Booker basically explodes through Parka’s striking with explosive moves like flying forearms and side kicks. That leads Parka to just taking shortcuts – he kicks the rope into Booker’s gonads when Book is re-entering the ring – but again, Booker hits a flying forearm to stuff Parka’s momentum. Then, Booker hits a spinebuster that breaks off part of Parka’s mask, which is a cool visual. Parka tries to fight, but Booker hits an axe kick, a flapjack, and a Spinaroonie. He follows up with a Harlem Side Kick and ends the match with a missile dropkick for three. Solid semi-squash there! I’m looking forward to his match with Chris Benoit at Spring Stampede. Speaking of Benoit, he cuts Parka off as Parka sneaks up on Booker with a chair after the match. Booker appreciates it and extends his hand, but Benoit is a nutter and shoves Booker because he is INTENSE, fellas, he’s got the profile of a family annihilator after all! We get a very good video package that sums up the Raven/DDP feud. This is a really good feud that probably doesn’t get enough TV time as it is. Robbie Rage, the good member of High Voltage, comes to the ring with his tag partner in tow. I have ZERO clue why he’s getting a shot at the number two title in the company, but okay! DDP still doesn’t have the physical belt in his possession, but he’s got the Diamond Cutter, and that’s pretty much all he needs. Page gets two off a flash rollup off the jump and smiles, like he did that just to get into Rage’s head that the finish is coming out of nowhere. Rage gets some good offense in – a flying forearm, a powerslam, and a SWEET springboard splash, like Rage got some HEIGHT on that last one. Page takes a beating, per the typical upper-card babyface match on Nitro, but he gets in a swinging neckbreaker and then a rebound Diamond Cutter for the three. Of course, Immediately after the match ends Raven has a mic in the stands on the ramp (Raven yells OVER HERE, YOU IDIOT at Page, but I feel like he meant that insult for me as well). Raven challenges Page to come get the gold, but of course, most of the Flock forms a wall between Raven and Page. DDP dives at the Flock members and is tackled and hauled away by security while Raven takes off. Konnan (w/Vincent) faces Rick Steiner (w/Ted DiBiase). Maybe we’ll get some more Vincent/DiBiase interaction, which I look forward to every time. Yeah, I grew up on WWF. They kind of mix it up early on, and the match itself is alright, too. Rick Steiner’s out here hitting power moves on Konnan, who sells exquisitely. The nWo members trap Rick and drag him outside, where Vincent throws forearms at Rick, and DiBiase comes over and hauls him off, haha. Konnan does his awkward, yet compelling offense. He pretends to be a dog pissing on Rick after hitting a basement dropkick. Something about heel Konnan settles well with me even if he’s kind of shit as a worker. Rick eventually gets back on top, sets up for a top-rope bulldog, and hits it. DiBiase comes over to cut off Vincent one more time and keep him from shoving Rick off the top rope. Yeah, this was a TV match that wasn’t particularly great or anything, but I found everything about it satisfying and enjoyable. Oh my, I haven’t kept up with this thread because of life – it was the previous Nitro that the Savage parking lot attack happened? Man, feels like months ago that I watched it. Anyway, we see footage someone who may or may not actually be Randy Savage getting loaded onto the ambulance again. Savage will be out for awhile with a legit knee injury and also a kayfabe concussion and neck injury. There’s a whole video package on top of this replayed footage summing up the last two months of fuckery in that main event angle. It’s a bit much. Michael Buffer ring announces the Sting/Kevin Nash WCW World Championship match. Sting unloads on early with a whole bunch of punches. Nash catches Sting on a leapfrog and hits Snake Eyes, then starts his own offensive. The crowd’s about 50/50 for these two. Some yutz in the crowd has written THE DISCIPLE on a plain white tee. There’s a fucking Disciple stan out here. Fuck me. Nash hits a bunch of moves at a very slow speed. Sting tries to make an energetic comeback, but Nash shifts his weight on a Sting bodyslam attempt, topples onto Sting, and gets two. A Nash elbowdrop gets two. Nash locks on a chinlock. I like Nash in the ring more than most, but man, he’s about a trillion times better working tags. He can get very ponderous with his control segments sometimes, especially in this era of his career. Nash hits a gutwrench suplex for two, then a side slam for two. Nash has Sting set up for the Jackknife, so he obviously hits it and gets three puts Sting in a bearhug and tries to get a submission. Sting fights out and hits two Stinger Splashes, then dropkicks a stumbling Nash into the corner and hits a third Stinger Splash. Sting locks on the Scorpion Deathlock, but Randy Savage comes down with Liz. Liz distracts the ref and Savage batters Sting in the head with the cast on his hand. Nash covers…and gets only 2.9. Minnesotans in the stands launch trash into the ring as Nash powerbombs Sting for…2.9 because Bret Hart comes out and yanks the ref out of the ring. Hey, that’s not a bad payoff for all those Bret outros! Bret noted that he’d be around to help Sting, after all! Bret beats down Nash and locks him in the Sharpshooter, then releases it to fight off some nWo B-Teamers before there are too many numbers. Nash Jackknifes Sting again and leaves while Bret recovers and fights off the nWo members who have him out-numbered. FINALLY, Bret’s in a main event angle worth his time and energy! I’m even okay with Sting getting his ass beat again because at least he had the match won before Savage interjected himself. But yeah, I’m jazzed about Bret being elevated into a main event angle, even if I know this high won’t last. I can’t grade on what I haven’t watched yet, though! The show wasn’t great with the talking, but I did like most of the in-ring stuff, though I wish there were more time given to Jericho, Raven, and Page. Still, this was a solid bounce back show after the previous Nitro. 4 out of 5 Stinger Splashes
  5. I'm going to guess: Fucked some possums, fucked an armadillo, fucked Inoki's pet possum or armadillo.
  6. Ah, that's what you meant by the subtle action leading to a fall. I thought you were referring to the end of the first fall and the interference that led to the finish. That's really good work, wow. I need to go back and look at that second fall again. This match was really good, lots of intensity, a hot crowd, and it was packed with stuff, but all of it was important. I can see now that the mask thing is sort of analogous to a heel baiting a face by doing something illegal to lose a fall, but winning the war because now he's set the babyface in a mindset of revenge. Ripping the mask off and sacrificing the first fall set Villano V up for the rest of the match. He baited Blue Panther into trying for revenge, which a) led directly to the second fall when Villano unlatched his mask after Panther went crazy and focused on ripping at it, and b) directly to the third fall when one of those sudden small package attempts caught an enranged and unfocused Panther out. Wow, top-level psychology there. You can piece together Villano V's gameplan, and it ended up working in the narrative of the match. Very cool match; I'm glad to have seen it!
  7. Lucha! Blue Panther vs. Villano V (Mask vs. Mask Match), CMLL 75th Anniversary, 19 September 2008 I always think to myself that with a mask vs. mask match, I’ll be missing out on all the hatred that led us to this point, so at least Blue Panther rushes Villano V before anyone is ready for the match to start to give me an idea of what the hatred must be like. Thing I like: The wrestlers going for early flash pins because even if they hate each other, they hate the idea of losing their mask even more. Thing I don’t like: This referee’s positioning and super-slow count. Villano V just kills this man Blue Panther with a vertical suplex on what looks to be one of the hardest floors this side of the Irish McNeil’s Boys Club. Unless you’re Konnan wrestling Rey Misterio Jr. in WCW, going for the babyface’s mask early almost certainly guarantees that you’ll be losing your mask at the end of the night. Bad strategy, Villano V. (Editor's note: I guess Villano V learned some mask-related magic from Konnan in the WCW backstage area!) I think a cool feature of this match is how it vacillates between two guys trying t murder each other and two dudes trying to get small packages so they can sneak out of there with a win. Panther just tried to spear the shit out of Villano with a suicide dive. He almost does, considering the huge blotch of blood that spreads on the side of Villano’s head after Villano is knocked backward onto a chair leg. Gross! And awesome. On commentary, I hear the phrases “the devil’s cauldron” and “thirty years,” and boy, do I wish I had the Spanish to understand the rest of that sentence. So, Blue Panther’s lost his mask after Perro Aguayo Jr. interferes, and Villano V gets the pinfall off that distraction with a small package. They contest the second fall almost immediately after the first ends. The ring lady comes down with a sign and has to retreat halfway because Villano’s beating the fuck out of a defenseless, maskless Panther in the middle of the ramp. I mean, that was a great visual. Panther finally has a replacement mask, but he’s in deep trouble because he’s had to take a beating since he was covering his face until he got said replacement mask. Villano gets close on a two count, then both men fight over a high-angled Boston Crab by punching the crap out of each other. These 2.9s that Panther is barely kicking out of would be more effective if the ref didn’t take so long to slap the mat on his count. Panther finally gets out of trouble and goes at Villano V’s mask, which is a reasonable strategy. The shithead ref, who has let Villano V get away with this, is real antsy about Panther getting his revenge. So, Panther gets the mask off and Villano covers his face with a towel and leaves. I’m not entirely sure what the fuck is happening or if that counted as a fall, I believe one of the commentators calls Villano an ugly motherfucker, or something like that (or maybe he’s talking about Villano III, now that I look back at Mr. Dynamite’s original post with this match link). Look, as someone who watches like one CMLL match every year or two, I’m obviouly not entirely used to the house style, but it seems like you can get a fall by ripping a dude’s mask off along with getting a pinfall. Or maybe the mask-ripping is a DQ? I’m not sure about that. So there’s a lot of consternation during fall three, but I can’t tell why – being a monolingual person SUCKS, and I really need to power through and learn a second language even though I’m an old man. Panther suicide dives again and drives Villano into the laps of some people in the front row. Then he does it again! This is some fuckery. So, these fellas trade two-counts, and I’m going to be honest, I’m assuming that Blue Panther is winning this. I don’t watch lucha, but I know Blue Panther and I know his iconic mask, and probably I’m also a dopey ignorant American who mostly knows Villano V as the guy who jobbed to like one move in fifteen seconds after doing a switcheroo with Villano IV on Nitro. Villano V is the guy who Tony S. and Bobby H. clowned on commentary during multiman luchador matches before ignoring them to talk about the latest escapades of the nWo. I thought I knew the winner of this match going in. But no! Villano has been trying flash pinfalls all night, and that strategy isn’t some bullshit strategy. It pays off because, even if Panther kicks out of the first five or six attempts, the seventh one just might surprise him. In fact, it does, and Villano takes the third and deciding fall. Panther has to unmask. Then these dudes shake hands and exalt one another. That was a match in which, not being used to CMLL’s house style, not knowing a lot about the feud, and not being able to understand the language of the commentary team didn’t matter at all. Endlessly entertaining stuff.
  8. His matches have multiple false finishing runs and he gets lots of 2.9s on pinfall attempts leading up to finally putting his opponent down.
  9. Let’s jump in and watch the Funker: Terry Funk vs. Jerry Lawler (MLW Underground #21) Lawler cuts a pretty solid promo on Funk before this match, but Funk cuts a promo response in which he Lawler a “pervert” with a “Bob Barker hair transplant and […] facelift" and generally just SHITS on this dude. Hahahahaha! I mean, Funk went IN on Lawler, but I guess when you beat the shit out of each other in a classic Empty Arena match, that’s what’s going to happen. Perfectly enough, in his promo, Lawler did some shilling for WrestleMania and then in the follow-up promo, Funk was like YOU’LL DO AND SHILL ANYTHING FOR A DOLLAR, YOU MONEY-GRUBBING ASSHOLE. I caught a bit of Sonjay Dutt cutting a promo before jumping forward, and boy, the comparison of his promo quality to what came before him is quite the juxtaposition even beyond what anyone with common sense would expect. These are two of the best “old guy well past their physical peak” workers ever, so this should be at least pretty good. Lawler heels it up on the house mic before the match starts. Funk responds. Well, the crowd is hot for it! We don’t get to see the extent of Lawler’s stalling; we cut to Funk throwing some nice right hands. Funk immediately hits a piledriver on the floor, assuming that we haven’t had much action clipped out before this, so yeah, that’s an immediate escalation. Funk hits a second after Lawler tries to struggle out of it. Simon Diamond randomly (from my perspective, I didn’t see the weekly angle) comes out and gives Lawler a barbed wire coil while the ref moves Funk away; Lawler punches Funk with it and Funk bleeds. Lawler digs into Funk’s head with the wire; we’re clipped again and Terry Funk is up and hitting Lawler with Stone Cold Stunners and neckbreakers, but only gets two. This whole thing seems like nonsense of the highest order, and I can’t tell how much of that is because it’s clipped and how much of that is because it’s just dumb. Lawler trips Funk, puts his feet on the ropes for leverage, and gets three. Simon Diamond and C.W. Anderson run down and put the boots to Funk. I’m not sure what I watched there, but I didn't get a good enough picture of this match because of its clipped nature. Diamond and Anderson are mad that Lawler tried to win the match and didn’t beat the shit out of Funk some more, so they don’t pay Lawler the promised bounty for his work. There’s like a whole angle going on here with Steve Corino and pals trying to put Funk out of wrestling that I’m not interested enough in to go back and watch some of the other MLW stuff that explains it. Anyway, Lawler beats up the MLW Tag Champs Anderson and Diamond until Steve Corino runs down in a mask and helps turn the tide. The clipped version of this match was a dud, but the pre-match promos ruled! Terry Funk vs. Cactus Jack (ECW Hostile City Showdown, 15 April 1995) I used to think that ECW was the premier massive negative influence on modern wrestling. I was wrong. PWG is actually the worst thing to ever happen to pro wrestling stateside by a fair distance. I digress; the point of this opening remark is that I’ve re-watched bits and bobs of ECW over the past couple years, and when you get past the general tawdriness of the company, enough of the fast-paced or excessively violent stuff is done by workers who I think are top level that the work itself ages surprisingly well (unlike pretty much any of PWG). Cactus is disinterested in starting the match in the ring. He wants to fight in the stands. Funk’s shirt declares that he wants someone to stick a cactus into the surface of his ass or even maybe lodge one within his anal cavity. Commas matter, people. So yeah, these two have a garbage brawl in the stands, but it ages pretty well because these two are great at garbage brawls. The first garbage brawl I ever saw as a kid was Funk/Flair from WrestleWar ’89 on VHS (I’d seen other brawls, of course, but nothing that had that modern-feeling “wandering around using plundah” approach), and it left a great impression on me. I still think it’s one of the four or five best garbage brawls ever and that Flair’s best use is in a plundah-filled punch-fest over any other type of match. I digress again. Cactus whiffs on dives and both guys hit each other with random items given to them from the members of the crowd. That visual never gets old, by the way, of wrestlers just grabbing whatever someone’s holding out to them and swinging it wildly. This match is something you’ve all seen a hundred times before, but it’s elevated because these guys know how to sell damage and exhaustion at a level that few wrestlers ever get to. Funk suplexes a table onto Cactus while Cactus is stranded on the top rope, which is a cool spot. These ECW crowds were full of assholes (and I assume some very fine people), but at least they deeply care about every match they’re watching. Look, one wrestler breaking a beer bottle over another wrestler’s head will always be gnarly as fuck. Mikey Whipwreck runs in and ends up taking a great-looking bump over the rail. Hack Meyers takes a less great-looking bump over the rail, too. All this blood and plundah, and Terry Funk tries to get a win with a spinning toehold. That is NONSENSE, but I kinda love it. Cactus hits a small package out of that for two, then hits two DDTs. The first one only gets two because Sandman runs in with a cane, but the second one does get three after Cactus dispatches of Sandman. This match was pretty stupid! I don’t say that as a pejorative, either. Sandman jumps back in and canes Cactus and pours lighter fluid on him; then Funk recovers enough to go get a flaming branding iron and singe Cactus with it. I mean, this visual is bananas. This was entertainingly absurd, and the crowd chants E-C-DUBYA appropriately. This is the third Secret Santo match in a row that I’ve had to listen to Joey Styles on commentary. What’s next? Watching Seth Rollins, Young Bucks, or Kenny Omega matches? Writing about AEW content? May the good LORD in heaven protect me from such evil. Terry Funk and Dory Funk Jr. vs. Stan Hansen and Terry Gordy (All Japan Pro Wrestling, 31 August 1983) I have talked before about my bafflement with AJPW’s house style, especially the tag matches. They always seem to have at least one of Stan Hansen or Bruiser Brody in them, and I always feel like those matches have a bunch of dudes just ignoring wrestling moves or the concept of selling even a tiny bit. I may have grown up on too steady a diet of southern tags to adjust to the All Japan tag style. I also wonder how I’ll feel about this because some of the only AJPW I’ve ever enjoyed has been either of the Funks. It’s the Funks, Horst Hoffman, Gordy, Dr. Death, Misawa, and Kobashi, and after that, I’m usually out. I’m probably forgetting some juniors whom I like, but yeah. I am ashamed to say this, but I don’t even enjoy Stan Hansen. I know, I know. I liked the Andre match, but something about Hansen in both his AJPW and his WCW work has just not ever clicked with me. But yeah, this match has three of the four people whose work in AJPW I have enjoyed immensely, so we’ll see. I do like that Gordy and Hansen do the typical “jump the faces while streamers are everywhere” spot. That spot rules. When the match gets into the ring, Terry does whatever he can to persevere immediately. He tries desperately to dodge Hansen, then to out-strike Hansen, and then finally to endure Hansen. He does the latter, makes his way to Dory, and with Dory’s help, is able to get control of the match for a bit as a reward. I have a bit of a hard time believing that Dory’s going to stalemate a shoulderblock with a giant like Terry Gordy, but yeah, okay. Funk is very active on the outside while Dory plays FIP. Speaking of, I can identify a structure in the match (not to say there isn’t one in these AJPW tags usually, just that I can’t identify a clear one from my perspective), and so this is pretty good. The crowd is hot for it, which helps immensely. Dory gets the hot tag and here, Hansen and Terry do a cool thing – Hansen’s on Terry and punches the hell out of him, but the “hot” part of this hot tag is that Terry just endures it and punches right back to even things up rather than to dominate control. It’s not a typical hot tag where the heels both feed the face and pinball around, but it’s a cool variation considering Hansen’s level of toughness. Funk starts bleeding for the second out of three matches (I think Cactus was the one bleeding in the ECW match) as Hansen works Terry’s knee. I’m somewhat surprised by this sudden approach, but Gordy cheats on the outside to do more damage to it, so it works within the match alright. The heels now isolate Terry and do a pretty fun job with this part of the match. Gordy tries to show Terry up with a spinning toehold, but Terry’s not having any of that shit. He fights out of it and eventually gets a hot tag to Dory. Dory, who looks creakier than Terry in ECW did (and about as creaky as Terry in MLW), hits some dropkicks before getting his house afire put out. The heels just liberally cheat throughout this thing in clear view of the ref, who does not give a fuck. The match breaks down and the ref is just like, I’MMA YELL AT Y’ALL FOR NOT FOLLOWING THE RULES, BUT I REFUSE TO DO ANY MORE THAN THAT. Gordy whiffs on a splash attempt and Terry goes up top and quickly hits Gordy with a diving sunset flip that gets three. Of course, Hansen has dispatched Dory outside and has to run back in and destroy Terry and a few young boys before about twelve of them finally hold him back. The Terrys were great in this, Dory was fine, and Hansen was pretty good in spots. How everyone feels about Hansen, I feel about Terry Gordy. That guy Gordy fucking RULES at pro wrestling. This is the famous Terry Funk spot where he’s yelling ICHIBAN and then FOREVER about five hundred times, and yeah, it’s iconic. Thanks for these matches, Curt! I had fun watching each of them, though I wish the Funk/Lawler one wasn’t clipped. I don’t think I’d need to know anything about the angle if the full match were up because I trust those two old dudes to work a good match throughout that doesn’t need anything more than the opening promos and the match itself to be worth watching.
  10. @Curt McGirt: In keeping with my choices being stuff I've seen that I thought needed more love, that might just be forgotten little gems, or simply matches that I think are fun TV bouts in particular, here I offer you a choice based around whether or not you feel okay with watching Chris Benoit matches. Chris Benoit vs. Meng (Death Match, Slamboree '97) Direct link if video doesn't load: (https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x2dxlut) OR Johnny B. Badd vs. Eddy Guerrero (WCW Television Championship Match, Nitro, 13 November 1995) Direct link if video doesn't load: (https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x3dvz6s)
  11. Wow, making Matt suffer through a Seth Rollins match just because Emma had a far better year as a singles wrestler in 2015. I didn't know we were defying the Constitution of these United States and doling out cruel and unusual punishments now. (Seriously, I love the long-standing March Madness beef being used as a catalyst for your pick; you had me cracking up after I read this.)
  12. I finally got through these and man, Marty Jannetty is exhausting, isn't he? Bash at the Beach 2000 and Magnum TA's stories weren't really grimy enough for this show. BatB is a happy story - no Hogan anymore + Booker T. walked out as champ. Though I did get a kick out of Vince Russo being the most likely to tell the truth on this thing. Without WCW, Eric Bischoff would be selling lemons to gullible car shoppers in a small Minnesota town somewhere.
  13. You strike me as one of the posters around these parts who has watched so much wrestling and enjoyed so many bouts that I'm not even trying to pick something based on your eclectic tastes. I'm just picking something that I liked quite a lot that I feel is a bit forgotten. Even with the funky finish, the hate is a big draw for me: Syxx vs. Dean Malenko for the WCW Cruiserweight Championship at SuperBrawl VII - 23 February 1997. Sorry about the terrible video quality, though. https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x2okuu
  14. Thunder Interlude – show number thirteen – 09 April 1998 "The WCW Gang is carried by Chris Jericho” After a short break for real life, I’m have more time to spend watching fantasy fisticuffs with another Thunder… I blanked out for the recap of the Randy Savage stuff from Nitro and instead focused on participating in a pointless internet argument about basketball…I only snapped back when Generic East Asian Theme #38 played to bring down a wrestler…It’s Tokyo Magnum, up against Perry Saturn…This is a solid opener…Saturn brings so much intensity…Nice spot where Magnum backflips a charge, but gets his arms trapped on a strike attempt and suplexed…Saturn survives a sunset flip attempt and locks Magnum in the Rings of Saturn for the swift victory… Saturn tells the Flock to stay seated while he challenges Goldberg…I mean, yes please, I want to see that…Instead, the Flock does in fact run in and get murdered…Hammer pulled Saturn from the ring to protect him, and Saturn gets irritated and starts swinging on Hammer…That was pretty good fuckery… Prince Iaukea is an alright TV worker, but I’m not expecting much from his match with Yuji Nagata…Iaukea badly botches a reverse rana…This match has the double-whammy of not being very good and also being long-ish for a TV match…Sonny Onoo interjects himself to help Nagata…It doesn’t matter, as Iaukea kicks away from a Nagata Lock and hits a Northern Lights with a bridge for three…Chris Jericho comes out to try and save this by threatening to weigh Iaukea and show that he’s too heavy to fight for the Cruiserweight Championship…Jericho goes full-on Mean Girls, and yeah, it’s pretty funny… Raven still has DDP’s United States title…Wait, is this where some fan runs in and grabs Raven’s hair?…Yep, and I’m sorry, but Raven’s yelp as he gets dragged out of the ring unexpectedly is hilarious…I shouldn’t encourage these dumbass Florida Men to do stupid shit like that, but that was genuinely (and first time I saw it, unexpectedly) funny…Then poor Raven’s mic stops working…Raven’s shook and flubs a line about Page helping him get a job…This is a total dumpster fire of a segment, but it’s easily the most entertaining dumpster fire I’ve seen in awhile…Some other Florida Folk tomahawk chop in the background while Raven finally gets a working mic and finishes his promo…This was the most Florida shit ever… Tony S. interviews Buff Bagwell…Buff’s got his own face airbrushed onto the back of his nWo shirt…Fantastic…Buff Bagwell is still beefing with Lex Luger…He points out his exemplary record against Luger and promises to improve upon that record when they face off on the next Nitro…No offense to Buff, but they really have no ideas for Lex Luger if they're rehashing that feud…Turn Luger heel already… Konnan (w/Vincent) is extra spicy tonight…Chris Benoit is his opponent…Benoit and Jericho were both wearing Calgary Hitmen jerseys tonight, by the way…Haha, Konnan tries to pretend that Benoit pulled his hair on a hip toss, remembers that he’s bald, and then claims that Benoit hooked his earring…Konnan is a pretty clever dude in the ring, even if he’s not particularly great w/r/t WERKRATE…Konnan’s goofiness and Vincent’s involvement just irritate Benoit, who unloads on both of them…The numbers game gives Konnan space to gain control, but not for long…Benoit hooks on a Crippler Crossface, but Konnan gets a rope break…Konnan gets a bit of control after the rope break, but Benoit flips out of a suplex attempt and into another Crossface for the win… I’m so sad about how disappointed I am to see Curt Hennig and Rick Rude…WCW has somehow ruined these two for me…Rude goes to the desk again…Oh no, Hennig’s wrestling Jim Duggan…This match would have been iffy in 1989, and it’s 1998…Hennig unloads, and Duggan Hacksaws Up and ignores all of that offense…This nutbar crowd is into Duggan’s act because of course they are…Rude comes down and cuffs Duggan to the rope so there can be another beatdown…Jim Neidhart and Davey Boy Smith run down for the save…Please please PLEASE end this surprisingly awful feud that I didn’t remember until this re-watch…Probably because I worked hard to erase it from my memory… Glacier versus Lex Luger definitely rates as a WCW-ass WCW matchup…Buff Bagwell comes out to watch the match…Luger takes less of a beatdown than he normally does before it’s all forearms and Torture Racks for the win… Billy Kidman hops a ride on Reese’s back for his trip to the ring…Ooh, a match against Psicosis!...Good opening counter-fest that ends with a Psicosis lariat for two…Psicosis hits a wild plancha…Psicosis brings it to Kidman, who takes a beating until he hooks Psicosis on a punch attempt and hits a springboard bulldog for two…Psicosis fights back, but the ref is distracted by Chris Jericho (w/digital scale) coming out and getting on the apron…Psicosis gets a visual pinfall, but the ref doesn’t see it…Nor does the ref see La Parka hammering Psicosis with a chair…Mark Curtis does turn around to see Kidman drop an SSP for the win, though… Tony Skee-a-vone comes down to figure out what Jericho’s up to…Jericho wants to weigh Iaukea…Tony S. is like This isn’t an official weigh-in, and Jericho’s like Uh, um, J.J. Dillon said it was, he told me so, ask him and he’ll back me up…Iaukea comes down and steps on the scale…He’s 218, so Jericho claims that the scale’s calibration is off and then beats the fuck out of Iaukea with the scale…Someone figured out that Jericho is on a heater and had him do multiple segments, and rightly so…Jericho hooks on the Lion Tamer and yells YOU’RE FAT, C’MON, FATTY…I repeat, on a heater… Disco Inferno is so bummed when the nWo theme cuts his theme off in the middle of his dancing…Scott Steiner (w/Buff Bagwell and trophy) has been booked somewhat aimlessly since his turn…Steiner hits a violent-looking takedown to escape a headlock…Disco fights with Buff over the trophy while Steiner loads up to clubber Disco…Disco makes a comeback and tries to speed things up, but gets caught and overhead belly-to-belly’d…Steiner hits a double-underhook suplex and locks on the Steiner Recliner for the win… Chris Jericho is back out here one more time…He’s got a chance to become a double champ tonight…Booker T. is Jericho’s opponent…Jericho has probably been the larger man in the match too often in his recent contests because he tries to match strikes with Booker and gets easily overpowered…Jericho takes a beating, tries to escape, begs off, and finally pokes Book in the eyes…Jericho hits a Stun Gun to get some extended control…Book makes a comeback when Jericho whiffs on an Asai moonsault…Booker hits a pancake and Spinaroonies up into a side kick…Jericho pulls Mickey Jay in front of him and Jay takes the brunt of a Booker missile dropkick…Booker dumps Jericho outside, and Jay gets back up and calls for the bell since Jericho grabbed him and fed him two boots to the face…Jericho had an MVP performance tonight… Ric Flair was supposed to be on Thunder tonight, but Tony S. claims that Flair’s nowhere in the arena…Scott Steiner and Eric Bischoff crash Tony’s interview time to claim that Flair didn't show up because he's scared…Bischoff cuts a mid promo on Flair and how much better Hogan is than Flair…I mean, he just repeats himself like twenty times about Flair wishing he was the best, but Hogan actually being the best…Even the video stream gets tired and craps out for a few seconds…Finally, Scotty Steiner talks and I guess is now feuding with Ric Flair…Steiner calls Flair a coward, and Arn Anderson comes down to rebut Bischoff in Flair’s absence…This segment is just dire…All you need to know is that Scott Steiner and Ric Flair are feuding now, I guess…No, wait, Luger comes down to scrap with Scotty, so yeah, that also happens…Rick Steiner comes out and suplexes Eric Bischoff on the floor to end the segment…What a mess…Bischoff clearly has no consistent plan for like three-quarters of the roster… Kevin Nash (w/Konnan) runs down Hogan before tonight’s main event…He also promotes the baseball bat match at Spring Stampede…Nash calls Piper gay…Well, really, he calls Piper bisexual…I really, really, REALLY hate this main event angle…So, Nash is up against Rick Steiner (w/Ted DiBiase)…Nash proudly tells Rick that Nash convinced Scotty to go nWo…a bunch of B-Teamers come down and surround the ring…This truncated three-minute match is actually decent, but it ends in an nWo beatdown…the powerbombis still banned, but Scotty Steiner and the B-Teamers get in the ring and convince Nash to hit one anyway…the B-Teamers beat up Doug Dellinger’s mall cops when they come down to arrest Nash…the Giant comes out for the save as the cameras stop rolling… Every storyline that avoids nWo involvement is pretty fun…Chris Jericho’s MVP performance (tm Gorman) tonight saved what was otherwise a below average show…It’s a WOOOO for me…
  15. LOD didn't have the belts and hadn't since February of '92. Money Inc. had them, but lost them to the Disasters at a house show in July rather than having the title switch at SummerSlam. I do recall Hawk being jettisoned soon after the PPV, though. Man, the Steiners can't get on TV soon enough. I'm excited for Razor's debut, but he's still on pre-debut promo duty.
  16. I'm just glad to see Stevie looking healthy.
  17. I figured that I'd just write up two matches since The Natural gave me two. Why pick one or the other? THE NEW Daniel Bryan vs. AJ Styles (WWE Tables, Ladders, and Chairs, 16 December 2018) I haven't watched WWE for years now and didn't fully realize that Bryan had turned heel at any point after I stopped watching. Bryan does some Larry Z.-style stalling early on, and I loved it. Then they collar-and-elbow their way into the corner, and there are six camera cuts. Six! I counted eighteen total overall on that simple lock-up and punch-fest that went into multiple corners. Boy, I can tell that I haven't watched WWE for a long time because I thought the match production made this thing actively worse. Besides that, the commentary got in the way of what was a decent match. And do they have to insistently call him THE NEW Daniel Bryan all the time? God, this company goes out of its way to have awful presentation. I've been watching 1992 Superstars, and between Vince and Perfect having bad pun-offs to start every show and going all out to over-emote on commentary (particularly Vince), it's been pretty shitty. This is about a million times worse, though. These commentators bickering and bickering and bickering some more when there's a match going on is unnecessary. What does work about this match is Bryan deliberately differentiating this THE NEW version of himself by doing stuff that babyface Bryan would never do. Stalling, wrestling slowly and deliberately, grabbing the nostrils and pulling upward when prepping a bow and arrow. He spends the first few minutes of this thing smothering short bursts of Styles's fiery offense. Now, the other thing I'd say is that, while this match is well-worked, it probably could have been either a) edited down by ten minutes, or b) spent a full first five minutes of the full twenty-four with Bryan bailing, stalling, wandering around, etc. There's a Styles comeback around ten minutes in that feels like, yeah, we should go into the finishing run here, but the match keeps going for another twelve or thirteen minutes. It gets stuffed, and that's fine, but this elongated, counter-filled finishing run feels pretty played out. I get, from the commentary, that the spot where Styles wraps Bryan's ankle around the post is a payoff from the build-up to this match, so stuff like that is fine. But that should have been closer to the end, I think. They could have run through the leg-specific spots mostly there instead of doing leg work for half of the lat ten minutes and kind of ignoring the leg work for the other half of the last ten minutes. One final note: This crowd is not helpful at all. They are dead for that callback/payoff spot and pretty much everything else outside of getting to chant NO! while Bryan kicks Styles in the chest. Anyway, I thought that there was a good twelve or fourteen minute match in here that was a sort of over-worked, but still solid twenty-four minute match. The production being awful and the crowd being lethargic (I laughed at their weak "This is awesome" chant toward the end - it felt so obligatory for them) didn't necessarily help give this match the big match atmosphere I think it was meant to have. Rey Misterio Jr. vs. Psicosis (ECW Television, 17 October 1995) Speaking of awful commentary, it's Joey Styles! That's probably going to be a muuuuuuuuuch less popular take than me shitting on Corey Graves or David Otunga, I know. However, I love these fellas! I've seen this match long ago, but I'm glad to see it again. I'm having a moment right now in which, upon my WCW rewatch, I'm finding myself to be a bigger fan of Psicosis than I've ever been. He is a fun TV match machine. So is Rey (who is injured again at my point in the watch), but Psicosis has been a bit of a revelation for me. I've always liked him, but yeah, I'm a big fan at this point. This is best two-of-three, and the first fall ends quickly. They basically don't bother to pace themselves AT ALL for this first fall; both guys come out with the plan to throw bombs and get a quick 1-0 lead. This leads to three minutes of these guys diving on each other at top speed until Rey buries Psicosis with a rana at about three minutes in that nets him a quick pinfall. Poor Psicosis can't get on track. He got overrun and beaten quickly for a fall, and then when he gets back up for the second fall, he goes right back to trying to outrun Rey. Rey pretty easily rolls Psicosis, who I read as desperately wanting to show Rey up by out-high-risking him. Psicosis finally accepts that trying to run with Rey is a bad game plan; he slows things down a bit and uses his height and weight advantage to try and bully Rey. Psicosis hits a gross powerbomb, but a lackadaisical, celebratory cover only gets two. I love the work supporting a narrative that Psicosis a) wants to style on Rey and does a poor job of covering or following up sometimes because he wants to celebrate instead, and b) the animals in the crowd have him irritated and unnerved, so he occasionally stops to taunt them. Psicosis is fine as long as he uses power moves or wraps Rey in a submission, and he smartly takes a chair to Rey's knee to try and slow him down. But what happens when he starts running again? Rey dodges a running corner attack and goes back on offense. Rey looks like he might be about to catch Psicosis with another bomb for a quick win, but Psicosis catches Rey on a springboard moonsault attempt and buries him with a Tombstone for three to even up the match. Let me take some time to talk about the Philly crowd. These bloodthirsty scumbags, bless their hearts, are WHITE HOT for this thing. If you didn't know who either of these wrestlers were, you'd think they were a big deal just off the reaction. I can't help but compare them to the San Jose crowd, which mumbled chants in a half-asleep stupor in that previous match. So, after a replay of the first two falls, we come back to Psicosis powerbombing Rey onto a table that doesn't break, then straight launching him into some chairs at ringside before hitting a plancha all the way from the ring over the railing. Psicosis is coming off as a real mean prick in this thing. He acts like a guy who just hates everyone, especially Rey, and who has such confidence in his ability to pull any wrestling move off that either he'll kill Rey or kill himself doing shit he shouldn't try to do to kill Rey. In what I would argue is the spot of the night, Rey makes a comeback and ends up hitting a springboard 360 seated plancha to the outside. But the actual BEST part of this spot is right after, as both hurt, tired dudes find the energy to kick one another from their prone positions on the floor. They bring the HATE. Anyway, as I remembered, this match absolutely rules the world. Rey gets a chair and returns a few favors from earlier in the match. Rey hits a diving rana from the top rope for 2.9, then hits a headscissors and a second-rope springboard seated plancha to Psicosis on the outside. There's a sense that these guys can't possibly go on much longer at this pace and doing this type of damage to one another. Psicosis lays Rey out on a table at ringside and drives him through it with a senton splash because why the fuck not. Back in the ring, Psicosis follows up with a powerbomb, hits a chair shot, puts the chair on Rey's chest, and hits one more senton onto the chair (and Rey) that finally keeps Rey down for three. That this match is still a classic even after "lots of pacey, high-risk bomb throwing" became a common match type is largely down to Psicosis being the biggest and cockiest asshole jock luchador in the world. PSICOSIS FUCKIN' RULES (Rey's really good, too) I'm sort of glad I watched both matches because, whether Natural was trying to do this or not, I think they were a direct contrast of one another. One was over-produced in front of a dead-ish crowd and probably needed more editing to reach the heights it was going for. The other was simply shot in front of a blazing hot crowd and was EXACTLY the right length for the way these two worked it and the type of match it was. Interesting stuff, and I'm glad that I chose to watch both of them!
  18. That Funk/Flair match is my personal favorite Flair bout, as an aside. Who doesn't like Terry Funk? If you can't enjoy a Funk match, you don't like pro wrestling.
  19. Piper is mad over with those crowds, but yeah, his stick work is all crossdresser this, UR GAY that, with a heaping helping of awkward pop culture references. He had two solid PPV matches with Hogan, but Hogan was the best guy in both matches, IMO. Age in the Cage was the worst of their singles trilogy, and while it wasn't terrible, it was lesser because Hogan had aged enough at that point that he was much more limited than even eight months before. EDIT: I thought Piper's PPV match at BatB '97 with Flair was decent, but again, that was down to Flair.
  20. Okay, so Savage must work on a busted knee through the middle of 1998 before taking time off for surgery and many, many steroid treatments.
  21. Savage is getting huge tweener reactions as late as early 1998, when he unfortunately blows out his knee right before Spring Stampede that year. He was definitely crucial and stayed hot even as the vets around him struggled to maintain a reaction. EDIT: Savage and Hart haven't crossed paths on TV yet AFAIK, Zakk. Savage has been tied up with Luger and then Hogan. That match must have happened in 1999, unless I am wrong.
  22. Show #136 – 06 April 1998 "The one where Savage lays on concrete and we see it all the time, just see it and see it over and over, all the time” Cold open. An ambulance pulls up. It’s here to attend to Randy Savage, who has been laid out on the concrete just outside the building. But who could have possibly done this? Actually, a lot of people could have. Savage seems to make a new enemy every show. We spend quite a bit of time watching Savage get carted into said ambulance. Hot start! Trios tag time! Psicosis, who vacillates from babyface to heel with no warning, is here to team with other heels El Dandy and La Parka. Already in the ring are their opponents: Three East Asian dudes. These dudes don’t get a chyron. Hold on, let me look this up: They’re Judo Suwa, Tokyo Magnum, and Nobunaga. It took me so much time to find this info that I almost miss the sweet missile dropkick that Psicosis lands. I’ve heard of Tokyo Magnum, but my extremely spotty Japanese wrestling knowledge has failed me with the other two fellas on his team. Nobunaga sounds familiar, but I can’t be certain. I am ashamed of my ignorance. These guys run through a bunch of high-risk moves and do some contrived team spots. This is a perfect opener, full of action. Psicosis gets three with a guillotine legdrop. Post-match, Parka lays Psicosis out with a legdrop because Parka is a real asshole, and also there was some miscommunication between Park and Psicosis during the match. More ambulance stuff! I lied about watching Savage get carted into the ambulance earlier on. They had just brought out the backboard. Then we had a trios match. Now, we’ve cut back to them strapping Savage into the backboard. Riveting television! NOW we get the actual intro to Nitro, which honestly is kind of a cool deviation from the norm. Miami is hot for some pro wrestling action tonight! Disco Inferno comes out and points at his crotch a ton. Either he’s got a title shot tonight, or he’s propositioning a whole crowd of people at once. No, wait, it’s the first one. Booker T. is Disco’s opponent tonight, with the TV title on the line. Disco turns his back on Booker and points at his crotch some more, so Book clobbers him from behind in what is the rare “Wrestler A jumps Wrestler B from behind” babyface spot. There’s a narrative to this match, and it’s that Disco was so excited about maybe getting that TV title back that he forgot to actually, like, do some scouting or focus on his opponent. Disco does get some space by catching Booker and dropping his throat across the ropes, and he does get two on a swinging neckbreaker and another two on a clothesline, but Booker never feels like he’s in much danger. Disco’s offense is sandwiched between Booker killing him in the opening and Booker hitting a Spinaroonie after flapjacking Disco, then hitting an axe kick, spinebuster, and missile dropkick for the three count. Kimberly came out here dancing an admittedly terrible flamenco, but she damn near knocked me out. Had me clutching at my heart, sweating bullets, and looking to the sky like Fred Sanford. Lenny Lane and Billy Kidman have a decent bout. The crowd is exhausted after being white hot for a twenty-minute stretch, and though this match is worked at a fast pace and with lots of counters, it’s comparatively worked at a much slower and less counter-filled pace than the trios match from fifteen minutes ago. Lane goes up and barely touches Kidman on a somersaulting body press; Lane is very much a guy who will miss big moves roughly as often as he hits them. Kidman hits a sit-out spinebuster and an SSP (currently called the Seven-Year Itch, which is pretty, pretty, pretty good!) for the win after about five minutes of back-and-forth action. Mean Gene shills the hotline, but I was too busy getting some of these Albanese sour gummi worms to catch what NEWZ he was shilling. After that, J.J. Dillon is unfortunately out here to talk about Randy Savage getting his ass beat earlier tonight. What drama! NORMAN F’N SMILEY is on my streaming device! Yessssss! He’s gonna job to some nWo member, though. Konnan (w/Vincent), as it turns out. I just watched a Vincent/Virgil squash on a 1992 Superstars in which he dumped a guy right on his head on a wicked back suplex. That was the nastiest/hurtiest shit I’ve ever seen him do. Anyway, this match on 1998 Nitro could be weird and fun. It could also be dog poo. I actually think it trends toward weird and fun. There’s some aimless, but enjoyable chain wrestling. Konnan grabs a dude’s sombrero, puts it on, and yells ORALE into the camera. That was random and funny to me. That cradle DDT looked extra-gross tonight. Don’t get me wrong, this match wasn’t good, but it wasn’t unpleasant to watch, even with Konnan moving at quarter speed. Konnan wraps on the Tequila Sunrise and wins it. If I was more into this Savage tweener run, I’d probably be less annoyed with the continuous discussions of, videos about, and segments on Savage being attacked at the start of the show. Wow, finally a replay that has nothing to do with Savage on a stretcher. This one is for that awesome Raven/Buff/DDP stuff from the previous Nitro. Page is defending the U.S. Championship that he doesn’t currently possess against Buff Bagwell tonight. Buff’s dudebro gimmick is hilarious, and I unabashedly enjoy it when he’s on my television. Now, as I recall, he is going to get badly hurt in 1998 on one of these weekly shows, and maybe I should look that up before I get to it. I don’t want to have my viewing of that incident catch me by surprise. Page is down here in blue jeans with permanent sunburn, looking like a regular trashy everyman. The General Thread was talking about why Page got over, and yeah, it’s his sincerity and that he’s a very good worker, but also that he probably has a bit of the Stone Cold thing going on in that he speaks specifically to working class white dudes who have dreams they want to one day realize. Buff gets a couple of beal tosses early, but he’s too busy posing to press an advantage, and Page jumps on him. Page hits a swinging neckbreaker and goes for punches in the corner, so Buff forearms Page in the nuts and takes over. Buff’s not a very good heel control worker, unfortunately, though his intangibles like posing and smack talking at least make his control segment bearable. Page tries to fight out, but Buff flips out of a Page powerbomb attempt and hits a terrible swinging neckbreaker of his own for two. Page comes back shortly, wins a punch-out, and hits an inverted atomic drop and a lariat. Page hits a pancake and sets up for the Diamon…oh hey, it’s Raven in the stands! Raven invites Page to come up there and settle a few beefs, and Page obliges. Buff Bagwell has now defeated the current holder of the U.S. Championship, and also the other, more legal current holder of the U.S. Championship in the last two weeks. Sure, he’s defeated both by countout, but okay. Buff demands the physical belt from Penzer considering his recent victories, so Page comes back in the ring and hits him with a Diamond Cutter for good measure. Buff’s pretty entertaining! I mean, unless he’s the heel in control. It's more footage of the Savage incident! A muscle car speeds off while the Disciple and Vincent wander around and threaten Liz. Quite the nailbiter! Hulk Hogan is back at the arena after speeding off in his muscle car earli—I mean, hey, it’s Hulk Hogan. Here at the arena for the first time all night, I’m sure. Actually, I guess it could be Kevin Nash in that tiny muscle car, but honestly, the real swerve would be Lex Luger, though they haven’t set up Luger going Wolfpac at all, so whatever. This whole thing is not worth the thought or the words that I’m giving it. Anyway, Hogan talks so much. So, so much. He pretty much admits that he jumped Savage in the middle of all that jibber jabber. He also backs Kevin Nash to beat Sting tonight – oh yeah, Sting’s defending the WCW Championship against Nash later on – and then he basically expects Nash to just hand the belt over to him. Not yet, Hogan; you’ll have to wait until January 1999 for that. He insults Piper and the Giant before mercifully leaving the ring. This might be a weird take, but I enjoy Van Hammer. He doesn’t wrestle much and just acts as muscle, which he’s good at. When he does wrestle, he’s pretty fun, especially if he’s in there with Page. Tonight, he gets murked by Goldberg, which has good squash match potential. I was right, too! This indeed was a fun little squash match. Goldberg counters Hammer a couple times before Hammer hits a jawbreaker and a nice flapjack. Hammer tries to come off the second rope with an axehandle, but gets speared in mid-air and Jackhammered for three. Then, Goldberg scares away a circling Flock. That was a fun way to spend three minutes! Saturn is mad about all the failure from the Flock members who rank beneath him, so he puts Hammer in the Rings of Saturn and shoves Kidman. Well, at least they split up a segment with Hogan talking and a segment with Piper talking by having that cool squash/Saturn getting all mad in the middle. Piper talks about beating the cross-dressing Goldust with a bat to un-sissify him or whatever and claims that’s where he got the idea for this bat match. He then makes a tired Bill Clinton reference. Random homophobia and random Bill Clinton references – yep, it’s 1998! Man, Piper is obsessed with cross dressers – he says that he’ll beat Hogan until Hogan is auditioning for RuPaul. First of all, has “Drag Race” been on that long?! Second of all, what is it about men dressed as women that sets Piper off so much? Third of all, I don’t need an answer to the second one, but I Googled the first one, and “RuPaul’s Drag Race” has only been on since 2009, so I have no idea what the heck this guy Piper is even talking about. Neither does he, probably. Eddy Guerrero has his cornerman/enslaved cousin Chavo with him. Chavo gives Eddy a massage and holds the ropes for him. Eddy grabs a mic and declares that grandma called him sobbing because she got kicked out of the Potluck Club because the other grandmas don’t let people with loser grandsons like Chavo in the club. BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA. This piece of shit! He declares the same about Mando getting kicked out of the Lowrider Club. This has caused Eddy to decide that Chavo will take his place in this upcoming match against Ultimo Guerrero. Eddy forces Chavo to say “I’m sorry, Grandma. I’ll do my best.” Yo, this is killing me. Chavo’s out here wrestling in jeans and tennis shoes because he had no idea that he’d be wrestling tonight, LOL. This poor guy. Chavo definitely tries his best! Grandma Guerrero, there’s no need to worry about that. Chavo takes over and has a long control segment, but all he can collect are a bunch of two counts. Brain: “[Chavo] has to keep his word, or else grandma and her menudo’ll be out in the parking lot again.” I don’t know why the visual of an elder lady Guerrero sadly standing alone and holding her good pot (all cooks have a “good pot”) outside of some half-deserted community center where the Potluck Club meets is so funny to me, but it is. This match is very good, and they go into a counter-filled finishing run in which the last counter is Dragon leaping behind Chavo on a suplex attempt and locking on the Dragon Sleeper for the win. Seriously, Chavo tried real hard! Eddy beats Chavo with a towel until Chavo finally gets sick of it and steps up in Eddy’s face. That was good television! We get some video of Gene Okerlund heeling on Dean Malenko after Malenko lost a match against Chris Jericho at Uncensored. The only way this would have been better is if Madusa had come out of the crowd and jumped Okerlund in revenge after Malenko walked away. Okerlund calls Malenko, who is 0 for his last 4 in PPV matchups, a “bonafide loser,” and I mean, Malenko was too sad to even throw a lariat and lock on the Texas Cloverleaf. Heenan blames Okerlund for running Malenko off, and he is 100% correct. I hope, by the way, that Malenko is getting this month off or however long it is as a make-good because he had to fly in to job at Starrcade on short notice instead of spending time with his wife and new child. Repo Man is up against the Narcissist…no, wait, Barry Darsow is up against Lex Luger. Sorry, I’ve been watching some ’92-’93 WWF lately. I actually started writing “Repo Man” before catching myself, so I figured I might as well go all the way and lampshade it. Luger actually wins an early exchange before eating a back suplex and taking the requisite mediocre beatdown from Darsow. Luger makes a lukewarm comeback that ZERO people care about. Man, Bisch and company booked Luger’s face turn into the ground before it would have naturally expired if they had done even some semi-competent post-Souled Out booking for him. Miami pops for the Torture Rack, at least. Anyway, you’ve seen one babyface Luger TV match, you’ve seen ‘em all. The remnants of the Hart Foundation are having a feud with a bunch of washed ‘90s WWF heels, which we are reminded of through a video clip. Tony S., who apparently hates us all like the heel that he is, is excited to present a return tag match from Thunder two weeks ago between all these midcarders this week on Nitro. Heenan makes a tasteless Melendez Brothers reference – it’s the ‘90s! – and Rude takes Tenay’s place at the desk again. Jim Neidhart’s name is still misspelled on the chyron, and now I’m sorta wondering if I’m misspelling it even though I know that I’m not. The crowd starts a RICK RUDE SUCKS chant because he’s easily the most interesting guy in this thing even though he’s not in the ring. So yeah, Bulldog and Neidhart have a boring tag match with Crush and Curt Hennig. It goes through a commercial break. Rude finally leaves so that Tenay can rejoin commentary after the break. I will give Crush credit for doing that awesome gorilla press with multiple reps, though. That spot rules. Then, Hennig comes in and does a spinning toehold because he thought the match was in danger of being entertaining. Good way to calm things down, Hennig. Finally, after about fifty-two years, Rude puts a knee in Neidhart’s kidney when the ref isn’t looking, which allows Hennig to apply the Perfect Plex for three. The Hitman comes down to clear the ring, which I think has happened the last three times he’s been on TV now. Great build, Bischoff! Bret grabs a mic and says the SAME SHIT HE SAID THE LAST TWO TIMES HE SAVED BULLDOG AND NEIDHART. Man, Bischoff paid Bret three million dollars a year to book him like this?! That makes spending a cool million dollars on the KISS Demon seem like prudent financial planning. Chris Jericho is defending his Cruiserweight Championship against Juventud Guerrera; Jericho comes to the ring, grabs a mic, and dedicates this episode of Monday Night Jericho to Dean Malenko. He says this about Malenko making an eventual comeback: “C’mon, little trooper! I know you can do it!” He then calls Prince Iaukea “Prince Nakamaki” and says that Iaukea shouldn’t get a shot and is barely a wrestler considering that he doesn’t even own a pair of wrestling boots. Then he quotes a song about the Brixton riots as a way to indicate that he will beat the shit out of Juvi at a level never before seen. More Jericho on the mic, less Hogan, please. Juvi comes out hot because he’s understandably pissed at this jackass Jericho. Juvi’s one step ahead of Jericho at every point, flipping out of a back suplex and hitting a lariat for an early two-count. When Jericho gets control, he tries to keep Juvi grounded by leaning on his power advantage. Jericho blatantly calls for a reversal that ends up being Juvi getting a victory roll, but Jericho gets out of it and hits a second-rope elbowdrop a la Steve Austin that gets two. This match is not as good as I’d hoped it would be, unfortunately. I didn’t expect one as good as the SuperBrawl match or anything, but something about this match is just a bit off. I can’t put my finger on it. Juvi’s fiery in his approach and his offense looks great; maybe it’s Jericho’s control work? Juvi hits a counter tornado DDT and gets a 2.9 that the crowd thinks is a winner; they boo when Nick Patrick says it only got two. Juvi hits his Juvi Driver, but Jericho catches him as he goes up for the 450. There’s a counter segment that goes like this: Juvi shoves Jericho away, tries a crossbody, gets caught, flips up into rana position, and gets his rana blocked and turned into a Lion Tamer. Juvi looks like he taps, but he didn’t tap, and so Iaukea’s dumb ass runs out here and throws in the towel, which I guess you can do even if you’re not the guy’s manager? Stupid finish, somewhat disappointing match, but Juvi rules. Scott Steiner (w/Vincent and shiny trophy) and Sick Boy (w/no one because the Flock barely likes one another) have a match next. Scotty beats Sick Boy down and poses. He poses and beats down Sick Boy. He’s working in some of his eventual signature moves like the elbowdrop-and-pushups spot. He yells at some dude in the crowd YOU GET IN THE RING AND I’LL BEAT YER BUTT and the dude yells back YOU AIN’T GOT NOTHIN’ PUMP and that was my favorite spot of this whole match. It ruled. Sick Boy gets zero offensive moves in, I'm pretty sure; Steiner locks on the Steiner Recliner, get the win, and…poses. Michael Buffer’s been making mad cheese lately. He’s here every Nitro and PPV to announce the main event. Not gonna lie, I prefer Gary Michael Cappetta. Whither hast thou gone, Gary Michael Cappetta? Kevin Nash (w/Konnan and Randy Savage t-shirt, hmmm) faces off against Sting (w/Big Gold Belt and sour look on his face). Nash grabs a mic and rebuts Hogan’s yammering from earlier. He says some boring stuff, but asserts that when he wins the Big Gold Belt, he’ll be keeping it for himself. Well, this time, at least. Nash opens up early with knees and soupbones. Sting makes a comeback, hits a flying lariat from the top rope, and dropkicks Nash to the floor. Nash pulls Sting outside and Konnan throws a bunch of forearms while Nash distracts the ref. Nash takes control again and pursues a choke-based offense for a bit. Nash gets two off a short-arm clothesline. It’s no Jake Roberts short-arm clothesline. Man, Jake’s signature moves ruled. Or, more accurately, Jake being the one to hit those signature moves ruled. Nash does the dullest offense alive. We get an okay backbreaker and a neck vise that goes on longer than it should. Sting fights up, but eats a knee to the solar plexus. I love the idea of this match, with Sting trying to explode for big offensive moves while Nash tries to ground him, but Nash’s choice of grounding offense is a bummer. Man, the heels on this show were almost all boring as fuck tonight. Sting finally makes a comeback and wraps Nash in the Scorpion Deathlock. Boy, is it an ugly Scorpion Deathlock. Nash gets the ropes with a bit of help from Konnan. Nash regains control after the rope break and gets two on a sidewalk slam, then two on an elbowdrop. He goes back to the neck vise. Sting fights up after his arm drops twice. Konnan comes in and, in a bit of TERRIBLE positioning, has to figure out how to stumble behind Nash to take a Stinger Splash sandwich. I read that maybe he was trying to save Nash by lessening the impact? If that's a wrestling psychology thing? Anyway, Nash gets control AGAIN and sets up for the Jackknife, but remembers that it’s still illegal – oh yeah, it is! – and as he tries to figure out what to do instead, Hogan runs in and attacks Sting, drawing a DQ. Nash is mad that Hogan blew up his spot. Most of the nWo runs in to beat down Sting, but Nash and Konnan chillax in the corner. Piper and the Giant eventually do run down for the save. The crowd is hot for this, but I think except for Sting’s performance, it stunk real, real bad. This Nitro in general was mostly sweaty ass crack, but Eddy and Jericho’s mic work (and also Kimberly’s terrible-yet-awesome flamenco) save this from a sub-3 score for me. 3 out of 5 Stinger Splashes
  23. You know, I believe that you're right about this.
  24. Sullivan/Benoit at SuperBrawl '97 was the height of their series because of the involvement of Woman and Jackie. I loved the heck out of that match when I watched it a few months back. Those matches were good, but they got very samey. They always went into the bathroom almost as if they had to live up to that first match where it was unexpected. The SuperBrawl match had that, but it also had Woman punting Sullivan in the balls and a wicked-looking finish.
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