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  #11  
Old 07-27-2017, 11:24 PM
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Originally Posted by HeenanGorilla View Post
I've been enjoying your posts on this period in WCW. I have had the Network since Mania and, aside from re-watching Season 1 of Tough Enough, I have been watching mostly 80s and early 90s WWF.

These posts remind me how much I enjoyed the Monday Night Wars. My question is...where would you (and other posters) suggest I start watching from? I watched back then, but my timeline memories are really 86-maybe 94 WWF. Later WWF and all of WCW, for the most part is a big jumble in my mind.

I feel like a kid in a candy store with the Network--I don't know where to begin. I would rather not sit through the less eventful beginnings, or lulls, of the MNW. So, what period would you suggest? Regarding WCW, I am thinking '96 with Hall showing up on Nitro, but I don't know if I want to go that far back with WWF. Didn't it take them a while to get their footing? Any recommendations would be appreciated.

Good stuff...thanks!
watch Nitro form May 1996 - March 1999

watch Raw from Dec 1996 - April 2001

Last edited by relentless1 : 07-27-2017 at 11:32 PM.
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  #12  
Old 07-28-2017, 05:03 AM
d_henderson1810 d_henderson1810 is offline
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I think that, at times, Vince Russo gets a rough time of it.

I actually think that Russo ending WCW is overstated. It was making mistakes long before Russo walked through the door, and it was on life support when he arrived.

The fact is, Hogan and co ended WCW by their "Creative Control" in their contracts, and looking after themselves rather than the company.

I actually enjoyed some of the things Russo did on WCW. The "Powers That Be" storyline was interesting, and I tuned in to see how Russo would screw over someone by booking against them. You didn't know what he had planned next for the talent.

I also though the "Millionaires Club" and "The New Blood" storyline was a good idea, but Hogan and friends refused to put anyone over (over in WWE, the same thing happened with the Invasion, and Russo wasn't even part of WWE then). I think an "established talent" versus "new talent" storyline would work in WWE, (having people like Cena and Orton being attacked by up-and-comers from NXT, for example).

Russo also actually pushed new guys, as opposed to the same old ex-WWE veterans doing main event after main event. Whatever you think of Jeff Jarrett (and whether he should have been champion), it was good having a new heel main eventer, and Booker T finally got pushed, and I doubt that Booker would have been as big as he was if he wasn't pushed by Vince Russo (I think a month before Russo got there, Booker T fought at a PPV as "G.I. Bro", which doesn't scream "main-eventer").

I think Russo cops a lot of criticism (fair and unfair) because he stood up to Hogan, and called him out onscreen. I bet Hogan and friends told everyone, and poisoned Russo's reputation even more. Also, Vince Russo seems like a prick, and hard to get along with, so he has few people jumping to his defence, even when warranted.

Don't forget, Vince Russo was head writer during the "Austin v McMahon" storyline, considered one of the finest storylines in wrestling history, and ended Nitro's ratings stronghold over RAW. I think he was also there when Mankind won the belt on RAW, which also generated ratings. It was Bischoff and his big mouth who got people to turn over to RAW and watch Mankind win the belt, so he buried his own show on that night.

Also, if Russo was ONLY good because Vince McMahon filtered him, then if Vince is SO good at that, why do people complain about storylines now? If Russo was such a dud storywriter, and McMahon was such a good filter, then the current storylines would be brimming with excellence. So, could it be that maybe Russo was a good story writer at some time in his career (I believe he lost it later on, but had it initially).

I think what spelt the death knell for WCW was Hogan, Nash and Hall, and their refusal to put talent over, and that Bischoff wouldn't reign them in, because he was too close a friend to them. There is a principle in business, that the boss needs a level of detachment from the workers (not be indifferent, but keep a professional distance), so that he can make the hard decision rather than be guided by emotion. I think Vince McMahon keeps a professional distance from the talent, and is their boss first, their friend second. Bischoff got it the other way around. Also, Bischoff spent money that wasn't his, and WCW was always destined to fail when it was an investment for Turner, rather than Vince McMahon investing his own money into WWE and making the decisions. As Dixie and Panda Energy showed, relying on another party to fund a wrestling company is doomed to failure.

Look, I am not defending Russo on everything. His TNA stuff was utterly horrendous (e.g. The Johnsons), but I think he gets a worse wrap when he isn't responsible for all of WCW's ills. If his actions ended WCW, then it meant that it was close to death to begin with, before he got there. Besides, the OP himself has mentioned things like the Starrcade '97 main event debacle and other things, none of them having to do with Vince Russo.
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  #13  
Old 07-28-2017, 12:33 PM
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I think that Russo doesn't get anything that he doesn't deserve. Sure WCW was in bad shape before he came in, which still to this day puzzles me because he came in in October of 1999. Just 7 months earlier, WCW was still doing great business and still had great ratings. I know I've covered what I feel like made WCW the shit show it became in the end, but to go from, honestly, great to barely alive in just 7 months time is still amazing to me. That's not the point, though, the point of this thread is to show people that Russo did indeed take WCW from bad to worse. That can't be argued against. The company was in bad shape before he took the reigns, but during his time and after he left; the company was in such horrible shape that if it were an animal, we would've euthanized it just to be humane.

So Russo deserves every bit of the crap that he gets from us fans.
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  #14  
Old 07-28-2017, 12:56 PM
AnthonyM4 AnthonyM4 is offline
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Remember on one episode of Nitro when two wrestlers were filmed going over the match and one telling the other "you will cover me for the 1-2-3"? That was another stupid Russo idea. He thought he was being innovative when doing the angle with Buff Bagwell in which the latter exposed the business. He lets La Parka pin him and then goes "did I do a good enough job for you Russo"?
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  #15  
Old 07-29-2017, 10:35 PM
MWRedskins MWRedskins is offline
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Originally Posted by AnthonyM4 View Post
A lot of people say that giving the world title to Arrquette was bad and it was, but almost as bad was giving that fat slob non-wrestler Ed Ferrara the cruiserwieght title! I didn't mind Madusa holding it, but why lose to that fatso?
oh yeah i so agree there!! i actually mentioned that in some other Russo post or youtube thing. Russo killed pretty much every championship in WCW...he literally had the TV Title thrown in the garbage...put the Cruiserweight title on talentless Evan, Madusa (re-creating Chyna), then re-did a Chyna/Jarrett feud only had the overweight Oklahoma (Ed) winning the Cruiserweight Championship.
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Originally Posted by FromGlasgow View Post
In Russo's defense Arquette winning the world title was apparently Tony Schiavone's idea which got signed off by Eric Bischoff, Some of his better ideas though was Booker T's push to winning the world title and the New blood factions feud with the millionaires club so at least he was trying.
Agree about Russo and Booker T, disagree about the New Blood vs. Millionaire's Club feud, i hated it and it reminded me of an nWo vs. WCW feud. the Club didnt really stand a chance if push came to shove because they were out-numbered. As for it being Schiavone's idea, even if it was, Russo should've laughed and moved on, Bischoff likely signed off on it just because he thought it would be good for publicity, but i'm sure if you asked him if it's a good idea in hindsight, he would admit it failed, Russo however still thinks it was a good idea.
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  #16  
Old 07-29-2017, 10:58 PM
MWRedskins MWRedskins is offline
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Originally Posted by d_henderson1810 View Post
I think that, at times, Vince Russo gets a rough time of it. I actually think that Russo ending WCW is overstated. and it was on life support when he arrived.
i think he does get a rough time of it, but it's deserving when you re-watch old WCW PPVs. CrashTV on Nitro is fine since it's selling the PPV, but on PPV, the fans PAY to watch wrestling, give them the matches, not gimmick stuff or consistant run ins or short matches.

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The fact is, Hogan and co ended WCW by their "Creative Control" in their contracts, and looking after themselves rather than the company.
i would agree here......if Hogan was around after Bash at the Beach 2000, but by then he was gone and Russo had more control, yet the company died. to me the fault isnt on Hogan. did he help, no, he did major damage to WCW...but Russo did as much damage....to me the damage is on AOL/Time Warner.

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I actually enjoyed some of the things Russo did on WCW. The "Powers That Be" storyline was interesting, and I tuned in to see how Russo would screw over someone by booking against them. You didn't know what he had planned next for the talent.
i actually didnt like that and felt it put Russo and the Harris Brothers over more than the actual wrestling talent...i like the idea of a heel authority figure if the guy gets his eventually, but Russo NEVER got his. he always won feuds!! he actually beat and cut Ric Flair's hair and won the World title from Booker T.

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I also though the "Millionaires Club" and "The New Blood" storyline was a good idea, but Hogan and friends refused to put anyone over
i thought it had potential....if the group wasnt so large....Also Kidman vs. Hogan just looked so unbelievable a match...i think a better feud for Hogan would've been Hogan vs. Mike Awesome....then Hogan losing actually looks believable. Kidman shouldnt have been a heel either, he was too talented in the ring to be a heel, he should've been elevated to US Champion at that time, but all the NB guys were heels and that really hurt the story for me.

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Originally Posted by d_henderson1810 View Post
I think Russo cops a lot of criticism (fair and unfair) because he stood up to Hogan, and called him out onscreen. I bet Hogan and friends told everyone, and poisoned Russo's reputation even more.
my criticism on him isnt with Hogan, it's on his love for very short matches. Constant Title changes, gimmick matches with objects on poles or a woman on a forklift and of course, run ins. Almost every Russo match had some type of run in during the match.

Quote:
Originally Posted by d_henderson1810 View Post
Also, if Russo was ONLY good because Vince McMahon filtered him, then if Vince is SO good at that, why do people complain about storylines now? If Russo was such a dud storywriter, and McMahon was such a good filter, then the current storylines would be brimming with excellence.
Dont get me wrong, Russo isnt a dud storywriter. he has come up with ideas i did like and i feel that if he has great characters/wrestlers to work with and another guy to help work with him who'll do the match part while Russo does the story, then he's a fine writer. Russo isnt a dud story guy, just a dud with matches as he feels the fans get bored with them.
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  #17  
Old 07-30-2017, 10:41 PM
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Originally Posted by MWRedskins View Post
i think he does get a rough time of it, but it's deserving when you re-watch old WCW PPVs. CrashTV on Nitro is fine since it's selling the PPV, but on PPV, the fans PAY to watch wrestling, give them the matches, not gimmick stuff or consistant run ins or short matches.


i would agree here......if Hogan was around after Bash at the Beach 2000, but by then he was gone and Russo had more control, yet the company died. to me the fault isnt on Hogan. did he help, no, he did major damage to WCW...but Russo did as much damage....to me the damage is on AOL/Time Warner.


i actually didnt like that and felt it put Russo and the Harris Brothers over more than the actual wrestling talent...i like the idea of a heel authority figure if the guy gets his eventually, but Russo NEVER got his. he always won feuds!! he actually beat and cut Ric Flair's hair and won the World title from Booker T.


i thought it had potential....if the group wasnt so large....Also Kidman vs. Hogan just looked so unbelievable a match...i think a better feud for Hogan would've been Hogan vs. Mike Awesome....then Hogan losing actually looks believable. Kidman shouldnt have been a heel either, he was too talented in the ring to be a heel, he should've been elevated to US Champion at that time, but all the NB guys were heels and that really hurt the story for me.


my criticism on him isnt with Hogan, it's on his love for very short matches. Constant Title changes, gimmick matches with objects on poles or a woman on a forklift and of course, run ins. Almost every Russo match had some type of run in during the match.


Dont get me wrong, Russo isnt a dud storywriter. he has come up with ideas i did like and i feel that if he has great characters/wrestlers to work with and another guy to help work with him who'll do the match part while Russo does the story, then he's a fine writer. Russo isnt a dud story guy, just a dud with matches as he feels the fans get bored with them.
You explain some of your points well, though I don't agree with some of them.

I agree with not liking short matches or run-ins, but WWE has done this too. Dusty Rhodes as booker was famous for "run-in" screwy finishes. Russo isn't the first to do it, but he did admittedly did it too much.

I don't like PPVs with too many run-ins or segments, but I also don't like ones where matches end in countout or DQ, which has happened with at least one match at the last few WWE PPVs.

I felt that "The Powers That Be" storyline was abandoned prematurely, and they never got to the part where he got his. Besides, there have been plenty of wrestling feuds where the heel never gets what he has coming to him (Triple H had plenty in his day).

I think Hogan rotted WCW so much by his presence, that no-one could have saved it. If Vince McMahon at his best was sent to WCW, he couldn't have saved it. The best doctors in the world couldn't save WCW once Hogan ruined it. Hogan lit the match and ran off while WCW burnt.

Like I said, I think blaming Russo for alone destroying WCW is giving him too much credit. If one person's actions alone made WCW go under, then it must have been in a sorry state before he arrived.

No, let's go back to his predecessor, Bill Busch, who never appeared onscreen, and all WCW did while he was there was drive Benoit, Guerrero, Saturn and Malenko to WWE.

Russo once said in an interview that he would have pushed Benoit and the others, and they would have got opportunities while he was there.

Before Russo was there, the man event talent was Hogan, Nash, Hall, Flair, Vicious, Goldberg,DDP, Sting and Luger. Other than Goldberg and Sting, all the others were as old as the hills.

After Russo, the main event scene was Jeff Jarrett, Booker T and Scott Steiner, guys which made the main event scene seem "fresh". Booker went onto becoming a HoF in WWE, something that may not have happened without Russo giving opportunity.

Kidman got a program against Hogan, and was pushed for a few weeks (until Hogan politicked against him).

Vince Russo putting the belt on himself was a parody of Vince McMahon winning the WWE Title on "Smackdown" a short time earlier. Arquette got mainstream attention for winning the belt, which was Russo's intention (maybe if the mainstream media grew up and mentioned wrestling other in a negative context, it wouldn't be necessary). It was also done to promote the wrestling movie Arquette did.

The Cruiserweight belt on Oklahoma is no more ridiculous than Hornswoggle being Cruiserweight champion (and beating all the other cruiserweights in a gauntlet match, to boot).

Constant title changes- The Rock v Mankind, which was around the same time, changed the belt four times. Jinder Mahal is the first WWE Champion in six months to retain his belt at a PPV (it changed every month between RR and Extreme Rules). Blame this on the fickle fans who get bored with anyone being champ too long. It has happened for years.

What I am saying is, these points you brought up have happened in wrestling for years, both pre and post-Russo, and by most wrestling companies. Russo gets heat because he doesn't have many friends in the industry (his fault) and he crossed powerful people (when he called out Hogan on-air) who everyone is afraid to stand up to. Russo has a lot of flaws, but other factors also played a part in many of these things.

Last edited by d_henderson1810 : 07-30-2017 at 10:44 PM.
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  #18  
Old 07-30-2017, 10:51 PM
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Another reason WCW died was because AOL bought Time Warner, and didn't want wrestling content (the "Attitude Era" in WWE had put wrestling in a negative light in the mainstream).

Also, Bischoff wouldn't stop wasting Turner's millions on "million-dollar giveaways" and KISS, and with WCW losing money, Turner agreed to dump it as an investment.
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  #19  
Old 07-31-2017, 01:00 AM
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If you're interested in Nitro, I would start with the shows that took place a couple of weeks before Bash at the Beach 96. Watch those to the end of the year and pretty much anything in 97 was good. Honestly, a lot of 98 was also good, but they definitely started to slip in 98.

As for Raw, I'd start with the Raw after Badd Blood 97 when Kane first came in. From that point all the way through 01, Raw was must see TV. That's my opinion anyway.
No as far as RAW goes i'd start when Bret Hart turned Heel and reunited the Hart Foundation Post Wrestlemania 13 and into the Summer.

Nitro i would agree with. At least when Hall & Nash show up along with Hulk's turn at BATB.
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  #20  
Old 07-31-2017, 01:11 AM
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As far as Russo's nonsense in WCW goes I think one of the biggest ones was turning Goldberg Heel at The Great American Bash 2000 (horrible Show by the way). Why in god's name he thought turning their biggest star into a hated Heel was a good idea I will never understand.

For some reason I kinda like nWo 2000 with Bret,Hall,Nash,Jarrett,Scott Steiner as I thought it had potential but injuries including Bret's retirement, Scott Hall being let go, and Steiner being a nutcase (I wanna say he was suspended for a bit) pretty much doomed it.

The New Blood had potential but it was a mess from the get go.

Plus there were some awful PPVs not to mention some bad Nitros too. One of the Nitros was the June 5th one before GAB with Russo in a Cage Match with Ric Flair where blood falls from the ceiling on Flair and Russo wins after surviving about 2-3 minutes in the Figure Four.

Great American Bash like I said and New Blood Rising are just all around bad Shows.
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