Monday Nitro From 1996 with KB

Discussion in 'Old School PPV/TV Reviews' started by klunderbunker, Nov 29, 2010.

  1. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    It’s a new year of Nitro. This year really doesn’t kick off until May when Hall debuts. Once that happens though, the War is officially on and it’s all WCW for about a year and a half. Other than that there isn’t much to say as that completely dominated Nitro and WCW. Until then it’s more of the same stuff from 95. Let’s get to it.

    Monday Nitro #18
    Date: January 1, 1996
    Location: The Omni, Atlanta, Georgia
    Commentators: Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan, Steve McMichael

    We’re having a live show on January 1. That’s different if nothing else. The main event is Hogan vs. Flair. Take a guess as to who wins. It’s for the title too. This is the post Starrcade show so of course Hogan gets the first title shot. Benoit vs. Regal and Anderson vs. Savage tonight too. This should be good. Let’s get to it.

    Arn Anderson vs. Randy Savage

    Damn from main eventing Starrcade to opening the show in 5 days. That’s quite the roller coaster. Basically Anderson cost Savage the title at the PPV so there’s your reason for this. Anderson jumps him to start and Savage is in trouble. Ok scratch that as Arn is out on the floor already. Bischoff talks about college football and mentions the Smoking Guns winning a football themed match on Raw. And so it begins.

    Savage still has a bad arm which is like offering a starving man a Christmas turkey. All Savage so far other than the opening flurry Anderson had. Anderson finally wakes up and goes after the arm. We head to the floor and so much for that as we’re already back in. Arn takes the tape off as Mongo points out that we’re having PPV quality matches on free TV. Steve McMichael is predicting the problems this company would be killed by. That’s amusing.

    Arn destroys the arm with all kinds of armbars and rams it into the post. Savage’s arm was legitimately hurt so this is more painful than it seems. They point out that Savage never taps out so this might be kind of pointless. In a NICE move, Arn fakes a punch so Savage ducks and Arn drops him with the DDT. It gets two and that more or less seals the ending. Down goes the referee and Arn gets a foreign object like he had at the PPV. Savage gets it and the shot with it ends the match.

    Rating: C. Not bad here but the ending came out of nowhere. Granted it fits the story so I can’t get that upset about it. This wasn’t much of a match but the arm work made sense and seeing Arn going after the arm is always a good thing. Savage was more or less just there for months on end as he didn’t really do anything other than get finishing moves for a very long time and this is no exception. Nothing special here but it’s not bad.

    Benoit and Pillman come out to do nothing at all.

    Steven Regal vs. Chris Benoit

    I think you know who Regal is. Bischoff again says the Smoking Guns win as Regal comes out. Naturally they start on the mat with technical stuff and chain wrestling until Regal hits him with a headbutt, making Benoit snap a bit. Hank Aaron is here. Regal Stretch goes on but it doesn’t mean anything yet.

    Solid technical match here as we fill in the wrestling quotient for the week. Benoit gets an electric chair drop on Regal and goes up for the headbutt. It eats mat and Regal takes over again. He throws some STIFF punches to Benoit but has a tombstone reversed. Benoit has perfected it apparently. Plancha misses Regal though and the crash is enough for Regal to get the pin actually. That’s a bit surprising.

    Rating: C+. Again pretty good stuff here with Regal getting the upset win. I think Benoit might have been legitimately hurt there given that ending which was more than a bit odd. These two would have more good matches in the future so this was no shock. Decent little match here with a surprise at the end. Can’t ask for more than that.

    Pillman and Benoit argue a bit about Benoit losing. Anderson gets on Pillman for starting problems. Their job is to protect the world title unless there’s something good at the end of it for them. The Dungeon comes out and the Giant pulls them back.

    Super Assassins vs. Sting/Lex Luger

    The Super Assassins are more commonly known as the Powers of Pain but in masks. Sting takes a minute to come out. Craig Pittman comes up to the announce table again and asks Mongo to be his manager for no apparent reason. Nice to see this getting more attention than a pair of former world champions that had a major issue at the biggest show of the year.

    Colonel Parker manages the masked dudes. They have yellow masks and black shirts and pants. They’re as generic as they sound. And now let’s talk about Hogan and Flair because this match still means nothing at all. Big powerbomb by the one we’ll say is Barbarian because I can’t tell them apart. A top rope headbutt confirms my guess. Hot tag to Luger and the Rack ends the Barbarian soon thereafter. Sting adds a Scorpion Deathlock for fun. They would get the tag titles soon.

    Rating: D+. Glorified and extended squash with the wrestling being a backdrop to the talking to Pittman and the build up for Hogan/Flair. Notice that they have THREE angles being talked about here: Sting and Luger, the Pittman thing and the main event. This is a good look at the way the whole company would look for years. The problem is that it would stop being interesting and start being bad. Match was just a step above a squash.

    Giant and Jimmy Hart. Jimmy says he’ll be jumping around a lot. Giant complains about Hogan costing him a lot, setting up Giant vs. Hogan in a cage at Superbrawl which was AWFUL.

    WCW World Title: Ric Flair vs. Hulk Hogan

    Bischoff says that Hogan rules the wrestling world. That sums up WCW in a single sentence: the non-champion rules the world. Screw that whole the champion is the top guy thing. There’s the bell just after a break. The WCW Atlanta crowd is ALL Hogan according to Eric. Other than when Flair does, well, anything. They try to treat this like the biggest match ever and it just doesn’t work.

    Hogan Hulks Up and no sells the chops. Flair of course keeps hammering because this is Hogan’s WCW so Flair is a complete idiot. Flair goes up and is slammed off as Hogan continues to control. He goes to the eyes to slow Hogan down though as he’s actually getting some offense! And it’s working! We now praise Hogan for getting Flair out of retirement. I’d assume the success of the 80s and early 90s can be credited to hulk too right?

    Flair goes for the knee and Hogan is pretending to be in trouble. You know, because he could never be in REAL trouble right? Figure Four goes on and I’m sure this is a REAL threat to Hogan. There’s the reversal and Jimmy Hart runs down to manage Flair. Hogan shakes like a fish on the mat after a suplex.

    The Hulk Up begins to a VERY lukewarm reaction. Leg drop hits and Arn runs in to pop him with the object. Hogan of course no sells it and the referee thinks Hogan used the object on Flair…because I guess seeing the big boot and legdrop didn’t convince him well enough or something. It’s a DQ win for Hogan…..somehow. Whatever.

    Rating: D- Well let’s see. In about 8 minutes, Hogan dominated Flair for about six, Flair got in the Figure Four and had it reversed in maybe 15 seconds, Hogan was praised throughout and he no sold a foreign object shot from perhaps the strongest average size guy in WCW history. Oh and he managed to win. Well of course he did.

    The Horsemen, the most elite group ever, run out and Hogan, ALL BY HIMSELF, manages to fight them off and hold them at bay with a chair. As in they’re all on their knees, cowering before him. Giant runs out to hit him with a stool but Savage stops that and Hogan sends Giant running after ONE, count it ONE, punch.

    After a break, Hogan makes a challenge for a tag match between Hogan/Savage vs. Anderson/Flair. They have secret weapons apparently.

    Overall Rating
    : D+. Well the first hour was good but after that the whole thing just kind of fell apart at the seams. There wasn’t much going on at all really but the Hogan worship was insane tonight and was just painful to watch. Flair looks like a JOKE here compared to Hogan which is never good for the world champion to do. The crowd reactions are very telling here with them not being happy about this at all. Pretty weak show but this was a bad time for them so that explains a lot.
     
    #1
  2. Hollywood Naitch

    Hollywood Naitch The current reigning and defending

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    WTF, I would love to see something showing the number of times Hogan has lost in his entire career, it has to be a ridiculously low number.

    Why would any company want to make their world champion look second rate? It really is beyond me. Describing Hogan as "Ruling the wrestling world" is not something you should do when Hogan IS NOT the champion!! It competely undermines Flair, which is something Bischoff did quite regularly according to Naitch.

    The other matches sound fairly interesting, WCW did have alot of good talent in Benoit, Regal, Anderson, Savage etc, it is just irritating that they just spent all their time massaging Hogans ego when there were better, more over wrestlers at that time. The WCW fans did not want to see Hogan at this point, it was only after the nWo angle began that he became relevant again.
     
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  3. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #19
    Date: January 8, 1996
    Location: North Charleston Coliseum, North Charleston, South Carolina
    Commentators: Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan, Steve McMichael

    We’re not on New Year’s Day this time so at least we don’t have to hear about starting off the new year with WCW and all that jazz. The main event tonight is Hogan/Savage vs. Flair/Anderson which is indeed a major main event. We’re in Horsemen country so I’m sure the fans will ALL cheer for Hogan right? Did WCW ever think these things through? Anyway let’s get to it.

    Oh and a side note: I’ll be doing two in a row of these from now on so I can stay on even numbers.

    The announcers talk about how awesome Nitro is to start until it’s time for our first match.

    Chris Benoit vs. Alex Wright

    Sounds good to me. Benoit is a Horseman here and has Pillman with him. To the shock of no one Benoit jumps Wright to start and we’re on fast. Wright speeds things up and gets to show off his aerial abilities as Bobby Heenan says that WCW has done more for young talent than anyone. Hang on a minute.

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

    Ok I’m back now. We head to the floor as Wright continues to control and Eric makes fun of WCW. Pillman distracts Wright which doesn’t seem to work at all. Bischoff drones on about how awesome WCW is and how they’re the most watched wrestling show in the world which is a joke at this point because of the 18 shows that they had been on for, their record was 9-7-1 with one week being a no contest due to Raw not airing (Christmas night).

    Anyway the point of Bischoff talking is that this month’s PPV is only going to cost $19.95 instead of the usual $29.95. To the shock of no one with a brain, there was no PPV that month as the next show wasn’t until early February. Anyway, Wright gets a Boston Crab and then over into an STF as we hear about how awesome Wright is instead of Benoit. That’s rather amusing.

    Wright continues his dominance until Pillman trips him up. Wright is like screw it and dives over the top to take down Pillman who runs away in response. The problem is that it gave Benoit a chance to rest and the beating is on. Dragon Suplex is blocked and then Wright makes his big mistake: he tries to grapple with Benoit. I think you can guess how well that goes. Dragon Suplex ends it seconds later with a thud.

    Rating: B-. Wright certainly looked good here. It’s a shame he never got a proper push as it would have been interesting to see what he could have done with it. Benoit of course was awesome here but he wouldn’t get really good for a few more months. Scratch that. He wouldn’t be able to show how good he was for a few more months. This was a fine opener though and a pretty decent match I thought.

    Steven Regal vs. Eddie Guerrero

    I thought Christmas was two weeks before this. Eric says you have to admire someone like Eddie. I guess that includes throwing coffee on him. They make a big deal about how a cruiserweight is fighting a heavyweight and how much of an underdog Eddie is here. We hit the mat and talk about Mike Ditka instead of the match. Ah we get to talk about the match now. Oh wait we need to talk about the Clash of the Champions and Nitro and then the main event. Why am I not surprised?

    And now let’s make fun of WWF and point out that we offer PPV quality matches for free instead of making you pay for shows like the “Royal Fumble.” Bischoff making up names is always funny. Now we move on to talking about Sherri and Parker’s wedding just for a change of pace. This is a very solid back and forth technical match so of course we can’t talk about it.

    Eddie tries his speed stuff but Regal keeps countering him at the last possible second. Nice reverse suplex gets two for Regal. Regal drops some elbows for two as we hear about how you shouldn’t count Eddie out because of his heart. You know, because he doesn’t have any talent to speak of right? They refer to Regal as a big guy. You can see the whole Cruiserweights have no business doing anything significant coming already.

    Regal throws some hard forearms and punches to take Eddie down then even more to keep him down. And never mind as Eddie gets a leverage rollup to end it. You would think Eddie had just pinned Hogan to win the title or something, which would be rather impressive since Hogan wasn’t world champion at the moment.

    Rating: B. ANNOYING announcing factored out, this was a hell of a match. They got on the mat and worked against each other, mainly focusing on counters and leverage which made this very fun. Couple in Regal’s insanely hard hitting shots and this is hard to turn down for the most part. Good match, awful commentary as you can see the anti-little guy stuff coming already.

    Gene talks to Sting and Luger while making fun of the old guys running WWF. Sting wants to ask Luger about some stuff from Starrcade where Luger more or less turned heel halfway through the match. They show a bunch of still photos of Luger keeping Sting from getting back in. Why not just show the video since it’s almost a flip book.

    Luger says he was asking for help getting up which makes no sense. Luger asks to be a tag team and Sting agrees, because Sting is a stupid man. Wait they already had a tag match at the next Clash so they were already teaming together but now they’re an official tag team? Did we just see a commitment ceremony on live TV? And you thought Billy and Chuck were ahead of their time.

    Sting vs. Diamond Dallas Page

    This would main event a PPV in about four years. Here it’s a glorified squash. Page jumps him to start and rubs his cigar in Sting’s face. A dropkick sends Page to the floor and it’s all Sting in the opening. Over the top dive has Sting firmly in control. Sting goes for a leapfrog but Page headbutts him in the little Stingers to take over.

    Swinging neckbreaker gets two for Page but only after he walks around for a bit. We hit the chinlock to waste some time so we can talk about the main event. Bischoff keeps talking about how you’re getting FREE wrestling this month. You know, like every Raw ever has been. Sting gets back up and fires off punches to take over again.

    The splash hits but DDP gets to the ropes before the Deathlock can go on. DDP fights back for a bit but Sting remembers that he’s Sting in 1996 and hooks the hold seconds later for the relatively easy submission. Heenan says that Page is a main eventer now. Something tells me Heenan has been having the leftover eggnog recently.

    Rating: C. Just an extended squash for Sting here as the focus shifts over to him being in a tag team rather than wanting the world title anymore. DDP would get a lot better in about a year or so but at this point he didn’t have a ton going for him for the most part. This was a better match than you would expect at this time though.

    Ric Flair/Arn Anderson vs. Randy Savage/Hulk Hogan

    Lot of time left for this one too. Savage is wearing yellow and red and there are now pictures of Hogan on the floor in the aisle. Oh and this company doesn’t have has beens. They have the best in the world today. In WWF at this point it was Shawn Michaels rising to the top of the company. These jokes write themselves. Savage vs. Flair starts us off officially after a quick tag from Arn.

    Flair is champion here and these two would eventually fight for the title at the PPV. Ok never mind as it’s Hogan vs. Flair starting out. Well why have Savage have a competitive match when we can have Flair get beaten up by Hogan? We get to a technical mat based style to start and of course Hogan wins that. A chop does nothing at all but a thumb to the eye of baldie takes him down.

    The big boot takes Flair down again and here’s Arn so Hogan can beat up both of them on his own for awhile. Arn comes in as does Savage who of course has a bit more difficulty since he’s not Hogan after all. Double axe off the top gets two for Savage. After running away from Hogan for a bit Flair comes in and gets caught in a Figure Four by Savage. Hogan gets one on Anderson also as the Horsemen look like idiots already.

    The Horsemen break up the holds with eye rakes as we take a break. Back with Savage in trouble in an abdominal stretch at the hands of Anderson. Savage gets his foot on the rope but Hogan makes sure to come in anyway to ensure that he gets credit for the save. Savage gets a quick sleeper but Anderson gets out with relative ease. The REAL Figure Four is blocked into a small package for two and then another one for two also.

    Eric: Hogan is the freshest man in that ring right now and he wants in that ring. He’s on the apron when Eric says that of course. Flair knees Savage into Hogan and of course he beats up both guys on his own again. McMichael says the plan apparently was for Savage to take care of the Horsemen and then Hogan comes in and cleans house. I’ll let you figure out why that’s nauseating.

    Anderson hits the spinebuster and Hogan of course pops up. This is getting sickening. The crowd isn’t popping for this stuff either. Hogan gets the boot and the legdrop for the pin but the Dungeon and the Horsemen run out for a big brawl as Giant beats up Hogan in the ring. Chokeslam for Savage too ends the show.

    Rating: D+. Meh, it’s a main event tag match and Hogan gets to be praised and worshipped some more. What else is new really? This naturally was a way for Hogan to look dominant over everyone else and have them all be glorified cannon fodder before we set up the next match against Giant which SUCKED. Not horrible but it’s the same stuff we’ve seen for months now.

    Overall Rating: C+. More or less we have the WCW formula in a nutshell here: the young guys come out and kick ass for half the show, then the “draws” come out and have a bad match where they’re glorified and the young guys that stole the show aren’t given a second thought all night. Why does this surprise anyone? This was a pretty good show if you can get by the Hogan worship. It would go downhill very soon though.
     
    #3
  4. WWEIsLife2

    WWEIsLife2 Championship Contender

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    Was it me or was that Nitro (January 8th) more of a "Lets take Cheap shots at Vince Show" than anythng else? I liked WCW overall but looking back at the Monday Night Wars it was clear the WWF/E was the Better Product. Since they were pushing Shawn Micheals and others to the top while Bischoff was kissing Hogan's backside every week. Good Reviews of the 1996 Nitros KB,keep em coming.
     
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  5. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #20
    Date: January 15, 1996
    Location: James L. Knight Center, Miami, Florida
    Commentators: Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan, Steve McMichael

    We hit the 20th show as somehow we’re five months into this series. Tonight it’s Luger vs. Savage….again, which should be at least watchable as they tend to be when they fight each other. Hogan vs. Meng as well could be ok. Also we have some guy named Flair vs. some guy named Sting. Wow they really aren’t going for originality are they? Let’s get to it.

    Apparently Hogan vs. Meng is billed as just a match vs. a member of the Dungeon and Sting vs. Flair is for the title. Sting vs. Flair is billed as the main event. Keep that in mind. Savage is going to get the winner, presumably at the PPV but they imply next week.

    Randy Savage vs. Lex Luger

    Apparently if Savage wins or loses he still gets the shot. What the hell kind of sense does that make? Why would Savage deserve a title shot if he loses here? Luger jumps him early as apparently he’s beaten Savage three times in a row now. He beats Randy down on the floor but Savage goes to his vast array of right hands. Heenan again manages to not be able to tell time, saying they’ve been on the floor for six or seven minutes when it’s been maybe 90 seconds.

    Savage gets a top rope axe handle for two as they’re flying through this. Randy takes over as this is far closer to a brawl than a wrestling match so far. He gets Luger down with a slam and goes up with a HUGE elbow but Luger gets up. Luger throws him in the Rack for the submission of all things. Lex won’t let go though which is rather surprising. There lies your #1 contender, which Luger points out.

    Rating: C+. Savage submitting? Wait the replay shows that Savage’s arm dropped three times, not that he gave up. That makes more sense. This wasn’t anything really bad at all with both guys brawling for the most part which makes sense as this was a big time feud. Not bad at all for the most part.

    We’re supposed to have a tag match with Horsemen vs. Dungeon but they all come out at the same time and not ready to fight. They have the new US Champion, the One Man Gang whose initials are far more amusing now. Anderson says he and Sullivan agree that there’s no point in having this war any longer as no one is going to win and it doesn’t gain them anything else. That’s why they feuded for another 6 months.

    Sullivan says Flair is awesome and that the Yankees or the Red Sox would love to have him. Giant/Flair vs. Savage/Hogan at the Clash. Sullivan respects Anderson too, but he doesn’t respect Pillman at all. Pillman goes all nuts again about not being afraid so Anderson smacks him upside his head.

    Since that match didn’t happen, here’s a standby match.

    Public Enemy vs. American Males

    This is Public Enemy’s debut. I don’t see good things for a match where Marcus Bagwell is the ring general. The Males jump the males and clear the ring to start. Eric says they’re bringing the newest athletes every week. As in a guy that was rookie of the year ten years ago, a guy that won the world title 8 years ago and former tag team champions are brand new. Got it.

    The Males clear the ring again because the first time didn’t explain things well enough I guess. There’s the ECW chant which I’m sure Bischoff has never heard of before. Riggs gets a sunset flip on Grunge for two. Some heel cheating lets Grunge take over for the first time which lasts about 4 seconds.

    Heenan suggests Public Enemy use spraypaint to draw pictures. Eric: No spraypaint here. That’s rich. A few seconds later Grunge rolls up Bagwell with tights to win it. This was about as much nothing as you could squeeze into three minutes. Post match the winners put the Males through tables which was a new thing for mainstream audiences at the time. Mongo says they’ll have to pay for those tables. I get why the Dudleys can’t retire now.

    WCW World Title: Sting vs. Ric Flair

    How many times has that been written over the years? Jimmy is with Flair here. Sting with a pair of nipups to counter Flair and freak him out. We hear again about the lack of PPV this month which is rather stupid. Now let’s talk about Mike Ditka for awhile. Also, the world title match is on third so that Hogan vs. Meng can go on last. Let that sink in a bit.

    Sting gets a top rope suplex as we take a break. Sting misses a splash on the ropes as we’re back to allow Flair to take over. There’s a sleeper by Sting but Flair gets a belly to back to escape. They slug it out on the ropes which of course Sting wins. And screw that as Sting goes too fast and gets caught. Figure Four is reversed into a small package for two though.

    Backslide gets two for Sting. And there’s Flair’s ass to fulfill contractual obligations. Bobby sounds a bit snookered. Sting no sells a chop and here he comes again. Jimmy gets up on the apron to do no good. Here’s Luger to take care of him but when he snatches the Megaphone from Jimmy it hits Sting in the head. The referee is fine with this for some reason and Flair throws on the Figure Four and Sting can’t move so it’s a pinfall for Flair.

    Rating: C+. Definitely one of the weaker matches they’ve had but this is a pairing where the rating goes up automatically because of who is in there. These two are guys that have such a history and chemistry together that anytime they fight it’s worth seeing. Nothing great but nothing bad at all which makes for a fine match.

    And of course Hogan hits the ring IMMEDIATELY to get as much camera time as possible. I mean less than ten seconds passed between the bell ringing and Hogan and Savage hitting the ring. Hogan yells at Sting about Luger not being on their side and Savage agrees. Again, WHY WAS THIS NEVER A TAG MATCH IN THE MAIN EVENT OF A PPV??? Sting didn’t realize Luger did it apparently.

    Sting leaves and it’s the Hulk Hogan Show! He asks Savage why he’s getting a title shot when Luger beat him four times and Hogan is on such a roll. That’s….actually kind of a good point. Why shouldn’t Sting get a title shot if they agree he got shafted just now? Savage says he’s got the shot so get over it.

    Jim Belushi will be on Saturday Night. Kind of odd but it’s mainstream appeal I guess.

    Hulk Hogan vs. Meng

    Yes, this goes on after the world title match between the two biggest stars in WCW history. The stupidity of this is the theme of Super Brawl is IT’S ALL ABOUT THE TITLE. Bischoff starts the ass kissing immediately, saying that he’s the king of the sport. Yes, the world champion means nothing and no one else means anything either. It’s all about Hogan.

    Meng takes over early as Bischoff likes to say HULK HOGAN a lot. Meng hits the nerve hold as Bischoff talks about how great WCW is. Heenan keeps talking about how Hogan is going to lose and how he has to be right eventually. Meng uses some spike object on Hogan, gets two, Hulk Up, you know the rest, Hogan wins with a shot with the spike.

    Rating: C-. Standard 4 minute Hogan beats up a monster match from the 80s. It’s nothing special at all and I mean that pretty literally because it’s been done so many times. This was needing to go on after the main event right? Can’t you see the connection there? Hogan does something he’s done 1000 times so it goes on after the world title. Sure why not.

    Savage came out to help and Hogan shakes his hand. The announcers recap things to end the show.

    Overall Rating: C-. FAR weaker show from last week and what a shock that happens when the older guys were out there. This Hogan stuff needs to end soon and it will as we inch closer and closer to May and the Outsiders. Not a good show by comparison but it wasn’t bad. They were really pushing this whole great month of wrestling and it worked to a certain degree. This wasn’t bad but by comparison it was if that makes sense. Twenty shows in the book. Not bad.
     
    #5
  6. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #21
    Date: January 22, 1996
    Location: Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada
    Commentators: Eric Bischoff, Steve McMichael, Bobby Heenan

    We’re getting closer to SuperBrawl and one of the worst shows of all time. The shows in Vegas always tended to be pretty decent actually. We’re getting Savage vs. Flair in another world title match tonight. This is what, their 5th world title match in 21 shows so far? You think Bischoff was obsessed with beating Vince in the ratings early on? Oh and once again Hogan is going on in the main event instead of the world title match, this time in an epic struggle against the legendary One Man Gang. Yeah what were you expecting? Let’s get to it.

    As the announcers preview the show, Konnan pops up as he debuts. He talks about how he’s Mexican Heavyweight Champion and tomorrow he’s defending against Psicosis. Random as hell.

    WCW World Title: Randy Savage vs. Ric Flair

    Savage comes out with a ton of women, one of which is an identified Woman (as in the wife of Benoit). Savage says it’s time to go and for the love of fuck Hogan is here. DUDE come on already. Let Savage have a damn minute to not live in your shadow. He wishes Savage luck and wants the first shot at it. This is pathetic. Tomorrow night (is there a Clash tomorrow or something? Ah apparently there is) Liz reunites with Hogan and Savage. Ok then.

    Flair goes after Woman and gets slapped in the face for his troubles. Savage drills him into the railing and the fight is on. Heenan FINALLY points out why Woman is there: she used to manage the Horsemen. Savage dominates for the most part despite being on a bad losing streak at this point. The Road Warriors are back tomorrow night too. Savage still has the horrible arm here and can barely use it at all which was a legit injury.

    Savage dives off the top onto Flair on the floor but eats guardrail as we take a break. Back with Flair hammering away but here comes Savage. Out to the floor again with Savage taking a slight advantage. Flair goes for the knee in the ring and there’s the Figure Four. That wasn’t much lead up to the hold actually.

    The referee catches Flair holding the ropes so the hold is broken. This prompts a shoving match between Flair and referee Randy Anderson. Flair goes up and is of course caught in the slam. A pair of double axehandles off the top take Flair down but Jimmy Hart gets up on the apron. Then things get really weird. Arn comes down to hit Savage with brass knucks but Flair gets hit instead. Hogan comes down to take out Anderson and the bell rings. The referee ignores it and Savage goes up, hits the elbow, and wins the title in a shocker.

    Rating: C-. This was the Cliffnotes version of their usual match and it wasn’t very good. This was just so the cage match they would have at SuperBrawl was for the title, which I thought was already a title match but whatever. This wasn’t anything special at all and say it with me: Hogan is there when Savage wins the title AGAIN.

    Since Savage has just accomplished something, Hogan is in the ring almost immediately. Savage says cut the music and Gene pops up to talk to the two of them. Savage wants to know why Hogan is there celebrating when he didn’t win anything. PREACH IT BROTHER! Hogan looks crushed by this but Savage is 100% right here. Hogan starts to talk and is being LOUDLY booed.

    Hogan wants credit for helping Savage win by taking out Anderson. He wants the first title shot and Savage says talk to the WCW Committee and if Hogan gets the #1 contender spot he’ll get it. Hogan still isn’t happy and wants Savage to have his back tonight. It’s just open booing on Hogan here. They shake hands and this is downright sickening. Hogan was a total egomaniac here and the fans realized it.

    Brian Pillman vs. Dean Malenko

    This should be good. Dean can move better than he’s given credit for. Pillman keeps yelling at the camera or the referee so Dean shoves him. Pillman takes over with various nefarious tactics and sounds like he’s yelling about Full Metal Jacket. This was during the Pillman is a psycho period. He slaps Malenko and Dean goes nuts.

    This match is kind of off for some reason that it’s hard to describe. They’re not jelling which is kind of surprising from these two. Pillman gets a tornado DDT but doesn’t cover. Instead he chops away but gets caught in a butterfly bomb for two. Heenan suggests calling your friends and telling them there’s a new champion. “Hey! Savage won the world title!” “Dude I don’t watch wrestling. Go play in the traffic or something.”

    Another tornado DDT is blocked and here comes the future love machine known as Deano Machino. Gutbuster puts Pillman down. Dean gets a modified heel hook that gets him nowhere. In one of the worst endings I’ve ever seen, Malenko gets his foot tied up in the ropes and gets his shoulder up but Nick Patrick counts three anyway. That looked horrible.

    Rating: D+. Yeah like I said this never got going for some reason. This was awkward the entire time and Pillman looked messed up. Dean wasn’t helping himself either as he never got going. I never was into Pillman as a heel for the most part and this was no exception. Just not something I was into.

    Tag Titles: Sting/Lex Luger vs. Harlem Heat

    Heenan is ranting about something after we get back which apparently is that he isn’t being allowed to talk. This is happening because Sting and Luger decided they were going to be a tag team now so they’re #1 contenders. We start it off after a brief commercial. Back and there’s the bell and it’s Luger vs. Stevie to start us off. Luger gets beaten down a bit but managed to bring in Sting who cleans house, beating up both champions at once.

    Scorpion goes onto Stevie but Booker makes the save. Booker gets an armbar on Sting as this is going very quickly but it doesn’t seem like much is happening at the same time. Luger breaks up a cover as Sting is getting beaten down pretty badly. Sting tries to fight back but gets clothesline on the top by Stevie. This is about as going through the motions as you could ask for.

    Harlem Heat is rather boring indeed. LONG nerve hold by Booker wastes a good deal of time. Sherri, Harlem Heat’s manager, isn’t here since she’s about to get married tomorrow which didn’t happen either. Booker goes up but the Harlem Hangover misses. Jimmy Hart runs out again and slips Luger something. With the referee distracted Luger drills Booker with what turns out to be a roll of silver dollars for the pin and the titles.

    Rating: D+. I couldn’t get into this one again. I don’t know what’s going on with these guys tonight but the show has been off by a step all night. I don’t know if it’s the being out west or what but this hasn’t worked at all for the most part all night despite there being talented guys out there. Sting and Luger would hold the belts for a few months.

    One Man Gang vs. Hulk Hogan

    Gang is US Champion here for no apparent reason and this isn’t a title match for the reason I’d assume of Hogan is above the US Title. Also note that this is going on after two title changes including the world title match. Tell me: what possible reason is there to not have this go first or second? Hogan against a generic monster is a bigger draw than a world title match between Savage and Flair? I don’t think so dude.

    Gang jumps him early to start and the fat is on! Hogan fights back and we almost get a big boot 40 seconds in. Out to the floor and Gang goes into the steps. Almost all Hogan here. Hogan with a thumb to the eye and some biting of the head. Clothesline takes Gang down but Hogan puts his head down and here comes the champ. Gang hits a clothesline and his finishing move: a big splash. Hogan pops up before the cover, there are the punches, big boot, slam, leg drop and the squash of the US Champion is complete at 3:03. Have I mentioned I hate Hogan in this time period?

    The Dungeon comes out as does Savage. Here are the Horsemen and the Megapowers fight them off. Giant comes out but everyone holds him back. Savage/Hogan vs. Flair/Giant tomorrow night.

    Rating: F. For FUCK YOU HOGAN. I get the idea of Hogan winning. I get the idea of Hogan beating a guy he has history with. I get the idea of Hogan being on TV. BUT WHY IN THE FUCKING HELL DID IT NEED TO BE THE FUCKING US CHAMPION??? You couldn’t put fucking Zodiac in there? Was Brutus fucking Beefcake too important to allow him to lose in a squash? In three minutes, Hogan got hit with two forearms, a clothesline and the finishing splash and won anyway, totally clean against the US Champion.

    What does Hogan gain here? Gang would lose the title a week later so what was the point? This was just a waste and it made the title looks stupid. I get that Hogan is a bigger star, but this ridiculous. It’s ridiculous for two reasons. First of all, it’s ridiculous that Gang is US Champion at all but that’s beside the point. The real issue here is simple: there is no reason at all for this to be against the US Champion. None. Not a damn reason at all. Hogan barged in on the world title match twice and now this. He’s taken the spotlight from both singles champions in one show. Do I need to tell you why he was getting booed?

    Anyway, Hogan (of course) talks to Savage and talks about the secret weapons, Liz and Kevin Greene. HEY YOU MORON, THAT MAKES THEM NOT SECRETS! Does Hogan even think before he speaks anymore? For some reason Hogan only wants to fight for the title at Caesar’s Palace. No clue when the next show there was (after the Clash tomorrow that is) but that could be awhile.

    Heenan gets into it with Mongo again to end the show. The Clash sucked by the way.

    Overall Rating: D. Well let’s see. There isn’t an above average match in sight, this is somehow a preview show for the Clash with two title changes, and yet Hogan was the star of the show….again. That’s the issue with this period: it’s total Hogan overkill.

    Everything revolved around like three guys and Hogan was taking up as much time as everyone else combined. The fans were booing loudly at him and the whole thing didn’t work. I love Hogan but this is ridiculous with how he’s involved in everything, even in places where he isn’t needed. This is why he was the third man. This and Uncensored. Bad show.
     
    #6
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  7. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #22
    Date: January 29, 1996
    Location: Canton Civic Center, Canton Ohio
    Commentators: Eric Bischoff, Steve McMichael, Bobby Heenan

    Time to wrap up January and naturally there’s a huge match on the card. To open the show, Hogan vs. Flair. We’re still leading up to Superbrawl so there’s also Savage vs. Giant. Hopefully there’s nothing like we had last time with the absurdity that was the Hogan stuff. This should be ok though but I don’t see a really good match on the card. Let’s get to it.

    Apparently Giant vs. Savage is for the title. They’re really not minding throwing out these title matches are they?

    Ric Flair vs. Hulk Hogan

    Hogan comes out with a bunch of women including Woman and Liz. Flair comes out with Jimmy Hart. Holy role reversal Batman! Flair tries to overpower Hogan and I think you know how well that goes for him. Chops get him nowhere either. Hogan hammers away and gets the clothesline in the corner and a backdrop to send Flair to the floor. Flair is getting dominated to the shock of no one.

    Hart distracts Hulk though and Flair gets a shot to the knee which of course hurts his knee. Well what else is new? We take a break and back with Hogan taking a lot of work on his knee. Naturally he’s just fine and pops up like a penis watching hot porn. Flair Flip and the clothesline puts him down to the floor again. Hogan goes to and gets drilled by Flair. Hart throws in some choking for reasons of being annoying.

    A lot more leg work by Flair and there’s the Figure Four. Naturally this isn’t enough as Hogan rolls it over. Mongo wants to know how many people have been able to reverse Flair’s Figure Four. Uh, just about all non-jobbers? It’s Hulk Up time and there’s the usual. Hart distracts the referee though and here’s Arn. Hogan drills him but he slips Flair one of Liz’s stolen shoes. Flair pops him in the eye with it and Flair gets the pin. Naturally it’s not clean though. Heaven forbid the thought.

    Rating: D+. They were totally going through the motions here and the match was boring as hell as a result. This went nowhere at all as they were just trying to get to the ending which set up some boring Hogan vs. Horsemen story for awhile. Yes they managed to make that boring. This was long but it was still boring as hell.

    Road Warriors vs. Faces of Fear

    Bischoff brags about being in the top company in wrestling. Their real hot streak would be coming soon but so would the crash. The Warriors are in blue here. That’s just wrong. The fans chant for the LOD and we’re on after a break. Animal vs. Barbarian here. The Warriors have been back less than a week and they’re already in the title hunt somehow. Go figure.

    We’re told by Eric that Flair has defeated Hogan and “become one of the elite in wrestling history.” Yes, in other words his twelve (thirteen depending on the source) world title reigns and countless other title reigns that he’s had over the years, being the top guy in the company for like ever, going to WWF and being the top heel, his Rumble win, all of the countless classics he’s had and all his other accomplishments meant dick. What made him one of the best (not the best mind you but just one of them) was a cheating win over Hogan on a TV show after 23+ years in the ring. See what I have to listen to?

    Meng goes off on Hawk but the no selling begins. Ok not yet. Oh there it is: Hawk does his signature move by taking a Piledriver and being on his feet first. I never got how that worked. The Faces of Fear run to the floor as the Warriors stand tall. Bischoff says this is all new talent. Riiiiiiiiight. He does list off some of the young guys that are here which is true. They are brand new here after they were all in ECW first.

    Mongo gets us back into the match by talking about Animal having a bad back and Barbarian working on it. It says a lot when Steve McMichael has to bring us back to reality. There’s a chinlock by Meng for a little bit which gets us nowhere. This has been more or less pure dominance by the Fear dudes for the last five minutes or so. Nice way to make the Warriors look awesome.

    Barbarian goes up for a BAD looking shoulder block which Animal falls forward from for no apparent reason. They try the spot again and Animal gets a clothesline this time. Oh well either way it gets Hawk in and one step closer to ending this. Hawk comes in and beats on both guys but gets caught on the top in almost a suplex. Animal picks Barbarian off to set for the Doomsday Device but it gets broken up. A top rope clothesline ends Barbarian shortly thereafter.

    Rating: D. This was supposed to be their big return? Who thought the Road Warriors having nearly ten minutes was a good idea, especially against the Faces of Fear? This was sloppy as hell and we don’t even get to see their big finishing move? This did not work in the slightest at all.

    Gene is with Kevin Sullivan and Hugh Morrus. Kevin is mad about Anderson and in turn the Horsemen not letting Giant go in after Hogan last week. Anderson and Pillman come out and Sullivan says keep Pillman under control or face the consequences. Anderson yells at Pillman about his immaturity and how he wasn’t there when Flair beat Hogan earlier.

    While Anderson is yelling at him and threatening him with tough love (cue ominous music!), Sullivan and Morrus beat down the Horsemen. Sullivan whips Pillman with a belt but Anderson gets a DDT on Morrus and Sullivan runs. This would lead to Sullivan vs. Pillman at the PPV in one of the weirdest moments in wrestling history as Pillman and Sullivan had a match set up where Pillman pretended to quit the company. WCW being WCW, they bought it and actually released him and he ran off to ECW and ultimately WWF. It was insane to put it mildly.

    Sherri is here and we get a clip of Madusa breaking up her wedding to Colonel Parker. As we come back to the arena, Madusa dives off the top with a cross body and apparently it’s match time!

    Madusa vs. Sister Sherri

    Madusa kills her to start. Sherri has a surprisingly nice ass. Eric talks about Madusa throwing the WWF Women’s Title in the trash which I think she regrets now. After a quick beating Sherri gets a shot in and goes up, but Madusa slams her off the top. In an ending I haven’t seen before that I remember, Sherri holds on and rolls through into a small package for the pin. Madusa kills her afterwards. No rating as this wasn’t even two minutes long.

    WCW World Title: Randy Savage vs. The Giant

    Savage comes out with all the women again. Wow what a man ****e. And there’s no Savage. He jumps Giant from behind and kicks the referee out. He jumps on Giant’s back with a sleeper because that works so well for everyone else and it’s thrown out in less than 50 seconds. Flair is at ringside too.

    Flair annihilates Savage at ringside and Giant grabs him too. The fans cheer for Flair which I assure you isn’t real. The fans are just confused. They want Hogan damnit! Chokeslam kills Savage dead. Oh of course Hogan runs down with his eye taped up and a chair in hand to take Giant out. Yes, Hogan saves Savage again because Savage can’t do a thing by himself.

    The Dungeon comes out and Hogan kills all of them with the chair too. Flair storms the broadcast position and yells at Bischoff. WOO to McMichael too. Giant does the same and says he’s going to eat his body heart and soul or something like that. Bischoff walks off. Take a guess which of the two matches wound up going on last at the PPV. Flair declares himself the host of the show. Heenan praises them as only he can do to end the show. Oh and Flair is a 12 time champion at this point.

    Overall Rating: D-. So let’s see. There are two matches that got any time and they both sucked. This was Hogan saving the day again and was once again the star of the show. It’s more or less a big commercial for SuperBrawl which wound up sucking hard. This was a bad show and one of the weakest they’ve had in their entire run so far. Bad show indeed.
     
    #7
  8. Hollywood Naitch

    Hollywood Naitch The current reigning and defending

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    Man, these Nitro's are just the Hogan show. I knew he dominated WCW in this era, but not to this extent!!

    That squash of the US Champion was just senseless, he pushes Savage into the background at every possible opportunity, and it was great that the fans realised this.

    Great reviews as always man. I love reading your stuff
     
    #8
  9. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #23
    Date: February 5, 1996
    Location: Jenkins Center, Lakeland, Florida
    Commentators: Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan, Steve McMichael

    We’re FINALLY at the go home show for Superbrawl which would turn out to be an absolute disaster. Anyway this on paper looks like a decent card but I’m not completely sold yet. These Nitros are so hit or miss that it’s unreal. Anyway this should be ok and if nothing else we don’t have to hear about how awesome Superbrawl will be after this so let’s get to it.

    By the way this is around the time when they started the overrun so these shows are going to get a bit longer.

    Eric and company run down the card for tonight and talk about Hogan a lot. His eye injury is the main topic of discussion of course.

    WCW World Title: Chris Benoit vs. Randy Savage

    Yes please. Benoit is a Horseman here which is why he’s getting this show. He’s not well liked at all due to said affiliation and has zero chance of winning here but this should be fun either way. Please give them some time? Big pop for Savage as this is more or less his hometown. He has Woman and Liz here with him. Guess what would happen with them at the PPV. Just guess.

    Now let’s make fun of WWF for a bit. Have to take care of that no? Benoit holds up the four fingers at Savage and the crowd doesn’t seem to care. Benoit was known as a guy with talent but he hadn’t proven a thing yet so this isn’t a real challenge. He takes over though and sends Savage to the floor. This was also normal though as Savage’s style consisted of 1. Get ass kicked. 2. Get ass kicked a lot more. 3. Elbow. 4. Win. That was how most Savage matches went for a few years including here. Well maybe not the last two but you get the point.

    Savage can’t get anything going and Benoit chops away in the corner. There’s the snap suplex as Eric says that historically Superbrawl is one of the biggest PPVs in history. Swan Dive hits as this has been ALL Benoit. Benoit works on the back as apparently he isn’t trying to win so he can wear Savage down for Flair on Sunday.

    Out to the floor goes Savage and Benoit tries a suicide dive to the floor but goes short and slams his head onto the foot of the railing. Sick SICK shot and totally legit it seems. Flair runs out to try to give Benoit a chance to remember what planet he’s on. Flair and Anderson beat down Savage for the DQ. Woman also turns heel and beats him up. Hogan makes the save with a chair.

    Rating: B-. Given what they had here, this worked rather well. Savage is beaten down for the PPV and Woman turned heel. That spot with Benoit had to be at least partially botch as even Benoit isn’t crazy enough to do that on purpose. Pretty good TV match and always good to see Benoit get a chance to shine.

    Savage is helped out so Hogan gets to talk now! The crowd is about 60/40 for Hogan here. Flair sneaks up on Hogan and hits him low. Liz can only watch. Flair goes after the bad eye as Giant comes out. BIG chair shot and Zodiac stops Giant for some reason. Savage comes back out for the save. Randy yells at Liz, asking why didn’t you warn Hogan. That’s a very good question. If you didn’t get it, Liz would turn on Savage at the PPV.

    Kevin Sullivan/Hugh Morrus vs. Arn Anderson/Brian Pillman

    Before the match we get a clip of their brawl the previous week. Sweet damn I could listen to that Horsemen music for a long time. Bell rings after a break with Morrus vs. Pillman. I think this is Pillman’s last Nitro. Bischoff points out how scary it is to have Anderson be the sanest guy in the match. Pillman can’t hurt Morrus as this was when they wanted Morrus to be something special I think.

    Big press slam puts Pillman down and the same goes for Anderson. We hear about the strap match on Sunday. I’ll post my review of the PPV at the end of this review. Make sure to check that out as it might be the most bizarre stories in wrestling history. Off to Morrus vs. Anderson and Anderson hits a spinebuster for no cover.

    Pillman comes in, slaps Morrus and then tags in Anderson. I liked his insane bits back in the day like this. Anderson with a chinlock now as we haven’t had Sullivan in here for the majority of the match. Back off to Pillman and then right back to Anderson. Other than the opening I don’t think the Pillman has been in there longer than 15 seconds.

    It’s been about 85% Horsemen here and Morrus is sent to the floor. Pillman sends him into the railing and the laughing dude is starting to laugh. Bischoff says we’re awaiting word from the coroner for word about Hogan and his eye. I give up. Sullivan vs. Pillman now and the fight is on. Sullivan bites his face and wants blood. Anderson saves his partner and Anderson gets a broom broken over his back by someone we can’t see. The Dungeon (Morrus/Sullivan) beats on Pillman with the strap for the DQ.

    Rating: D+. Basic brawl for the most part but the Sullivan vs. Pillman was interesting to say the least. It was some of the best acting that has ever happened in wrestling and evolved into Benoit vs. Sullivan. This feud went on forever and thankfully the NWO came in to end it. Basic match but it set up the PPV match well enough.

    Marcus Bagwell vs. Ric Flair

    Bagwell is an American Male here. Woman is with Flair now. Somehow he looks a bit more effeminate than she does. Paul Orndorff pops up at the announce booth and says you never know when payback is coming. Nothing ever came of this I don’t think. After a quick break we’re back with the bell. Savage has taken Hogan to the hospital. Better than the coroner I guess.

    Basic start here as Bagwell beats Flair down for awhile. Yep this is Flair Formula personified. Bagwell uses basic stuff and is all fired up to be in there and having some success with Flair. Flair gets in a cheap shot and here he comes. It’s the same thing every time but it works. Bagwell gets a rollup for two to counter the Figure Four. He misses a crossbody and hits the floor though.

    Here comes Flair with some stomps. Back in and we get the Flair knee drop. They slug it out in the corner with Bagwell taking over. And never mind as he gets kicked in the face to take him down. Bagwell gets back up and gets a middle rope suplex for two. Slingshot splash eats knees and I think it’s time to go to school. Yep and it’s over.

    Rating: C. Not bad here and a nice little quick shot for Flair before the PPV. This is fine for what it was supposed to be as Bagwell gets to rub elbows with Flair and Flair gets a convincing victory over someone that he should be able to get a convincing victory over. This was fine.

    Flair won’t let go until Savage makes the save.

    Tag Titles: Road Warriors vs. Sting/Lex Luger

    This is the blue period for the Warriors that looks stupid as hell. Animal vs. Sting to start. LOUD LOD chant to start us off. Animal might have a bad back here. Naturally Sting works on the arm instead. Sting controls to start and gets a top rope clothesline for two. We come to a pause and Sting shouts to the crowd. See, that’s smart. He keeps the fans from getting cold and just a shout like that can do it.

    Off to Hawk and Luger now. Is Sting the weakest person in the match somehow? Big shoulder tackle takes down Luger so it’s off to Sting again. The guy with more singles success moves out of the way of a charge in the corner but can’t get the Scorpion. Off to Animal who is sent into Luger as the champions take over. Luger hammers on the back as the fans chant for the challengers (Road Warriors if that wasn’t clear).

    We take an unannounced break as the building lost power apparently. Bischoff implies WWF had something to do with it. What the hell??? TNT is letting the show go on a bit longer because this is a big match, meaning we’re officially beginning the overrun. Front facelock as this match is really pretty boring. Powerslam by Luger takes down Animal.

    Everything breaks down and Luger gets a suplex on Animal but walks into a powerslam with no referee. Jimmy Hart comes out of nowhere and slips Luger some big metal plate that is apparently used to keep doors open. He drills Animal in the bad back with it to get the pin to retain. At least it’s over now.

    Rating: F+. This was absolutely awful. These four never were able to have a good match together and this was no exception. Sting and Luger didn’t care and the Warriors were so far past their expiration date that it was unreal. Bad match indeed and an odd choice to end the show.

    The Road Warriors demand a title shot at the winner of Sting/Luger vs. Harlem Heat, whenever that happens.

    Overall Rating
    : C-. This was decent at times but at the end of the day it feels like it’s just there. Nothing really ever got going with it and while they kind of set up the PPV a bit at the same time this show didn’t need to happen and the PPV build would have been the same thing for the most part. Other than the Woman turn, nothing happened here at all. Not bad but not needed at all.

    Oh and here’s Superbrawl.

    http://forums.wrestlezone.com/showthread.php?p=2044576#post2044576
     
    #9
  10. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #24
    Date: February 12, 1996
    Location: Florida State Fair, Tampa, Florida
    Commentators: Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan, Steve McMichael

    FINALLY we’re done with the build to Superbrawl. Now it’s time to start building to….oh no…..oh no……NO PLEASE NOT THIS!!! NOT UNCENSORED 1996!!!!! This would wind up being one of the worst shows that I have ever seen and easily one of the biggest jokes of all time. I guess we start talking about it tonight. Flair is champion and Hogan triumphed again last night so that’s what we’re building up with. Let’s get to it.

    Theme song opens us up.

    The announcers run down the card and talk about the two main events for the most part. Oh and Liz is evil now, meaning she’ll look much hotter now.

    We look at the Strap Match where Pillman acted/quit/got released and Anderson had to take his place. Now it’s the title match. Oh and Hogan in a grudge match went on after the world title match of course.

    Randy Savage vs. Hugh Morrus

    Savage vs. Flair again next week. Macho is all reserved and ticked off as he comes to the ring. Morrus jumps him as he comes in but Savage fights him off. Uh make that Morrus beats on Savage. Hey let’s talk about Hogan! There’s a new member of the Dungeon called the Loch Ness who weighed like 700 pounds. He would be gone in like 2 months and never faced Hogan.

    Randy gets a boot up in the corner to break up the momentum. There are going to be WCW guys on an episode of Baywatch. We hit the floor and Morrus eats post. Back in the laughing dude gets a suplex so he can choke. There’s the spinning finger from Savage after an elbow gets him out of trouble. Morrus’ moonsault misses, slam, elbow, another elbow, pin.

    Rating: C. Just your basic hero vs. monster match here that was nothing special at all. Savage gets a bit of momentum for the rematch next week which is certainly a good thing. The match itself was nothing special. They wanted to push Morrus I think but they never had the chance to really do so.

    Another elbow follows and Savage says he wants Flair.

    Gene talks to some racecar driver and no one cares at all.

    Scotty Riggs vs. Loch Ness

    So it’s a new monster against a near jobbing tag team face. What do you think is going to happen here? Anderson vs. Hogan is the main event apparently. Riggs gets some dropkicks and goes up for a cross body. Loch Ness drops him and falls on Riggs’ knees. A pair of big elbows end Riggs. Yep this was what I expected here.

    Liz and Woman wheel out a stretcher and yep Liz looks sexy in those black boots. Flair pops up off the stretcher for no apparent reason. You may not believe this, but Flair talks about styling and profiling and riding in jets and limos and Space Mountain. Liz says she has half of Randy’s money and implies she screwed Flair last night.

    Konnan vs. Devon Storm

    Storm is more famous (kind of) as Crowbar. Konnan is US Champion here but this is non-title I think. The bell rings after the commercial. Storm takes him down quickly with a dropkick and we hit the floor. Storm sets up a chair and hits a springboard tope con hilo. A dropkick from the apron is enough to put Konnan in the chair. Storm sets up the steps but when he tries a rana off them he gets powerbombed on the floor. Back in the ring now with Konnan hammering away. Konnan gets a sloppy rana for no cover as we speed things up a bit.

    Things slow down a bit as Konnan gets a leg lock. George Steinbrenner is here. You know this math stuff and the leg locks are kind of boring as hell. Storm tries a sunset bomb to the floor but is countered into a rana. Eric clarifies that last week when he implied WWF had something to do with a power outage that he wasn’t being serious at all. He sounds sincere when he says that too so I’ll take him at his word there. Back in the ring we get an ECW chant. Storm tries a top rope rana but Konnan counters into a powerbomb with a jackknife pin for the victory.

    Rating: C+. This was like a tale of two matches. The first half was incredibly exciting with Storm showing off a lot. The second half was rather boring and sloppy. It’s a great example of a match that would be much better if you cut off maybe 90 seconds, even though it’s a 5 minute match. Fun stuff but too much boring in the end for it to be really fun.

    Hulk Hogan vs. Arn Anderson

    According to Bischoff, Anderson is tough but Hogan is REALLY tough. Let the Hogan worship begin! He still has a bad eye too. Anderson gets a shot to the head but can’t do much other than that as here comes Hogan. Hogan no sells a clothesline and gets a pair of his own. Out to the floor and Arn backpedals. He tries a Piledriver out ther ebut Hogan counters into a slingshot into the post. Hogan takes the eyepatch off and rams Anderson’s arm into the post.

    Almost all Hulk so far here. Steinbrenner seems to like this. Arn gets a back elbow which puts Hogan down. And so much for that as Arn gets crotched on the top rope. Apparently he has balls of steel as he fights back and here are Liz and Flair. Spinebuster gets two as Hogan does the super kickout. Here’s the usual but Hogan struts and puts the Figure Four on. Flair comes in and while Anderson is in the Figure Four Hogan rolls up Flair at the same time. Woman throws powder in Hogan’s face and Flair slips Arn Liz’s high heel which goes into the eye of baldie for the pin.

    Rating: C. This was just to give Anderson the fluke win because what happens next is another eye rolling moment regarding Hogan vs. Flair and company. The match itself was just ok as Hogan dominated and then Arn got in like two moves. If Hogan hadn’t been an idiot (I know just go with it) then he would have won in a squash, which says a lot.

    Hogan’s eye is apparently fine as he pops up and beats both guys down. Savage comes in to help and they get a chair shot to Flair. Flair storms the broadcast booth and says nothing of note. Hogan and Savage chase them out of said booth. Hogan vs. Anderson II next week.

    Overall Rating: C+. The show was pretty good considering it's just a TV show. On the other hand, I’m about five and a half months into this show now and the problem is clear: we’re almost exactly where we were in September when this show started. Hogan is the ultimate force, Savage is his lackey, Flair is top heel, Giant is an X factor and it’s Hogan vs. two stables. While the details have changed, it’s the same thing we had almost six months ago. The NWO really was a huge deal as it changed everything. Now get us to that point! Weaker show here than usual and not good given what’s coming.
     
    #10
  11. This is the return of WTM

    This is the return of WTM Dark Match Winner

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    I wasn't watching wrestling at this time, so this is pretty new to me. But these shows have been like much of the Raw's we get now and would have probably turned me off to wrestling period. Barely enjoyable with little substance. Anyway, good review KB.
     
    #11
  12. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Yeah the early shows were just terrible. Now once we hit the end of May and Hall jumps the guardrail, things get awesome and awesome in a hurry. Hogan turning heel was the best thing that could have happened to him. These early shows were about the main event and that's it. THey're boring as hell but remember that these were the first primetime shows on regularly for WCW ever so this was a new thing.
     
    #12
  13. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #25
    Date: February 19, 1996
    Location: Wicomico Civic Center, Salisbury, Maryland
    Attendance: 4,700
    Commentators: Steve McMichael, Bobby Heenan, Eric Bischoff

    I was planning on doing the other two World War 3 PPVs that I hadn’t done yet but I had to download them so you get this instead. We get two more rematches here as we have Arn Anderson vs. Hulk Hogan again as well as Flair vs. Savage part 9, which I think is just the matches they’ve had on Nitro so far. Let’s get to it.

    We open with a clip of the WCW car winning the AAA level race.

    Arn Anderson vs. Hulk Hogan

    Anderson tries to jump Hogan pre match and gets drilled for his efforts. It doesn’t help that he’s all tied up in his ring jacket. Hogan’s eye is bandaged here but it’s not bad. Clothesline puts Anderson down as Hogan keeps his dominance going. Arn goes to the eye to take over and scratch that as Hogan takes him down with a single shot again. Bischoff plugs the WCW guys on Baywatch and takes a shot at Vader, mentioning the fight with Orndorff in the back.

    Hogan continues his dominance which has been almost the same throughout the match. Out to the floor with Hogan hammering away. Back in as we talk about Uncensored. Oh dear we did have to get to that eventually didn’t we? Arn has had maybe 2 punches in almost 5 minutes of the match now. FINALLY Anderson takes him to the mat and never mind again as Hogan grabs the foot to send him to the floor.

    Hogan gets a possible low blow outside and we go back into the ring one more time. Arn gets a shot to the rib and that’s his offense for now. DDT attempt and Hogan just doesn’t fall when Arn does. Are you kidding me? Big boot puts Arn down and Hogan puts on a figure four. Kevin Sullivan runs out and does nothing so Savage comes out to beat up Sullivan, which somehow gives Anderson the win via DQ. Uh….sure.

    Rating: D. Boring as hell match here with an ending that made no sense. In about seven minutes Anderson literally wasn’t on offense for 30 seconds. I get that Hogan is a far bigger star, but Anderson can’t get in even a minute or so of control just to add some drama? The ending doesn’t help either.

    Gene talks to the driver of the WCW car because WCW thinks people care for some reason. This eats up a few minutes because WCW wasn’t that intelligent at times.

    Alex Wright vs. Loch Ness

    It’s a young dancing guy against a relatively new monster heel. You figure the rest out. Wright moves around a lot and for some reason tries a wristlock. There’s really no point in listing off what’s going on here as we know the ending pretty clearly. Wright tries a sleeper and gets shrugged off. Bearhug goes on and I think Wright hits him in the head to escape. About the sixth dropkick gets him nowhere but he keeps hammering away. The elbow drop ends this with relative ease. Ness had two moves the entire match.

    Belfast Bruiser vs. Brad Armstrong

    The Bruiser is more commonly known as Finlay. We mention a tournament for the Cruiserweight Title. It would take place in America and Japan and would be won by some guy in Japan that no one remembers only to have Malenko win it in like a month. This is a rematch from Saturday night apparently. Snap mare gets two for Finlay. This is pretty clearly a filler to bridge us to the world title match.

    Finlay works on the arms as Armstrong can’t get much in the way of offense at all. He grabs a headlock which gets him nowhere. We hear about Antonio Pena from AAA who I thought was dead by this point. Finlay goes to the floor and works on Armstrong’s leg. Back in the ring a leg lock goes on which we would call the Haas of Pain. We hit the floor again for nothing of note. Back in Armstrong gets some momentum going but walks into a half tilt-a-whirl slam/half powerslam to end it very abruptly.

    Rating: D. Another dull match here. They spent a lot of time building up Armstrong as a serious challenger and then he loses that quickly? It was rather odd indeed but I guess they get some points for trying. Bruiser would go after Regal soon which would result in a great brawl on Nitro and that’s about it.

    WCW World Title: Ric Flair vs. Randy Savage

    Flair is champion here and has both women with him, both of whom are now dead. Savage still has a bad arm which was a legit injury so it’s understandable. Savage hammers away to take over as happens to Flair in most matches. We hit the floor and Flair gets a boot to the ribs and they go into the crowd. The women distract Savage to let Flair keep his advantage.

    Flair gets an elbow to stop a charging Savage as they’re seeming a bit off here. Nothing too bad but not very exciting. Could it be that there’s no point to having this match at all? Savage puts the Figure Four on Flair as just about everyone seems to do. Flair grabs a rope and then gets caught in a sleeper for his efforts. Suplex by Flair puts both guys down.

    They hit the ropes and Flair gets a hard back elbow to take down Savage. Vertical suplex by Naitch seems to hurt him more than Savage. They slug it out a bit so Flair goes after the knee and there’s the Figure Four. That gets reversed and Savage gets a backslide for two. They’re totally going through the motions here. They slug it out some more and Flair begs off.

    Ten punches in the corner and an awkward backdrop has Flair reeling. Flair Flip in the corner and down goes the champion. Liz, rocking a tiny skirt, interferes and throws a shoe to Flair. It’s picked off by Savage and Sullivan sprints down for no apparent reason. Hogan chases him off and Anderson hits a DDT to Savage so Flair can get the pin to end this.

    Rating: D+. Total meh match here that never got off the ground. These two fought each other so many times that I guess they were destined to have a weak one somewhere in there. This would be that match as neither guy seemed interested and there was no heat on it at all. Not an awful match but nothing great at all or even very good.

    Booty Man (the freshly face Zodiac) comes out for the save. Somehow no one recognizes him for a bit until Bischoff thinks he might. He chases Sullivan to the back and isn’t named. Now he’s back as Savage might be hurt. Flair invades the announce position and says Hogan has lost twice now. Booty Man comes up to run them out. Now Hogan comes up and a six man is set up for next week. His name is Booty Man apparently. Yes that’s his name.

    Overall Rating: D. Oh man this was weak. It’s like they remembered at the last minute they had a Nitro to do and just threw 40 minutes worth of stuff out there that they had used before. Weak show and probably the worst of the whole six month run so far. They didn’t care and it was completely obvious the whole time.
     
    #13
  14. Hollywood Naitch

    Hollywood Naitch The current reigning and defending

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    That sounds awful. I am glad I didnt watch WCW at this point, I really am.

    Looking forward to the Hall and Nash debuts, as WCW became awesome after that but these shows really sound shit. WTF was Loch Ness (wasn't he that fat UK wrestler Haystacks?) doing in WCW in 1996....very very strange.

    WCW had so much talent at this point already, and they just seem to be focusing on the veteran talent like Hogan, Flair, Anderson, Savage, Sullivan etc. Very poor

    Good reviews as always bro
     
    #14
  15. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #26
    Date: February 26, 1996
    Location: Knoxville Civic Auditorium, Knoxville, Tennessee
    Commentators: Steve McMichael, Bobby Heenan, Eric Bischoff

    Another week in Nitro here as I hit both the six month mark and half a year’s worth of episodes. That’s kind of an accomplishment I guess. After last week’s awful show we’re back here with a six man main event which sounds pretty weak but it follows the stories I guess. Anyway there isn’t much to say here other than let’s get to it.

    Theme song opens us up.

    Sting vs. Big Bubba

    This is a match that was on the Rise and Fall of WCW DVD where Eric flat out reads the results of Raw on the air. The idea was that we know what was coming on Raw but you had no idea what could happen here because it wasn’t taped already. Sting and Luger are tag champions here and yet there’s no belt with Sting here. Odd indeed and not the only time that would happen. Big Bubba is Big Boss Man if you were confused.

    We talk about NASCAR for no apparent reason. Long stall session to start the match off here. Bubba charges at him and Sting surprisingly outsmarts him. Sting was a great athlete but he really wasn’t all that intelligent at times. Bubba takes over for about 18 seconds and it’s back to Sting here. Ok make that back to Bubba as they go back and forth pretty quickly.

    We hit the chinlock with Bubba in control. Sting blocks being rammed into the corner and here he comes. Then he gets splashed and Sting is in trouble again. Bubba works on the throat apparently and we hit the floor. The idea is that Sting is used to having Luger there and isn’t that good without him. Bubba lowers his head and walks into a Piledriver and both guys are down.

    The double count of course doesn’t last at all. Eric hypes Uncensored which is hilarious as he says you’ll see stuff there you won’t see otherwise. That’s true as you’ll see stuff there that is more horrible than anything else you’ll ever see. More stuff to the ribs of Sting and we go to the floor again. Bubba gets crotched on the top though and a top rope cross body ends it for Sting.

    Rating: C-. Pretty boring match here and really just a way to let Sting look good. Granted there’s nothing wrong with that so I can’t really complain. Not a bad match or anything but it went a bit longer than it should have which made it a bit pointless. Sting was pretty worthless until we got to the NWO era anyway.

    Sting and Luger are here to talk to Gene when the LOD pops up. They want to know where Sting’s head is because Luger can’t be trusted. LOD says Luger doesn’t know what it’s like to be from Chicago. Sting says they’re from the streets of Chicago and Luger is from the white collar section of Chicago.

    Hawk says that Luger reminds him of a washing machine because Luger irritates him and then says he wants to go to the Atlanta Zoo (remember that we’re in Tennessee here) and knock out a gorilla. How do you even reply to that? A Chicago Street Fight is agreed to which Luger wouldn’t be involved in for the most part. Luger doesn’t know what a Chicago Street Fight is anyway. Lex has both titles here for some reason.

    Lex Luger vs. The Renegade

    Renegade is long past meaning anything by this point. The bell rings after a break. Apparently, despite Luger being in the ring, the Street Fight has been signed. Renegade hits some shoulders to take Luger down to start us off here. Luger gets an atomic drop which is no sold and a clothesline from the Warrior knockoff gets two.

    We talk about the hell hole that is the Power Plant as Renegade stays on offense. Luger gets a shot in and hits a belly to back suplex for two. Sunset flip gets two for Renegade and we hit the chinlock. Eric makes fun of the New Generation. Every joke he makes cracks me up more and more given how far they would fall by the end. Luger gets a suplex which is no sold as Renegade hits a pair of clotheslines and a powerslam for two. Renegade goes up for a splash but Jimmy Hart shoves him off instead. Back in the Rack ends this.

    Rating: D+. What the hell was the point of this? Luger looked pathetic here and was completely dominated for about 5 minutes before Jimmy Hart had to come in for the save. This was weird as hell and I have no idea what the point was. At least with Sting’s match the guy was a bit better than Renegade.

    Sting comes down to yell about Hart being there.

    Harlem Heat vs. Road Warriors

    Booker vs. Hawk to start us off. Hawk sends him to the floor with a dropkick and we go outside for awhile. Back in and Hawk hits his one wrestling move, a neckbreaker, for two. Animal vs. Stevie now as something tells me that this is going to go nowhere. It seems that they’re trying to avoid actually wrestling as much as they possibly can. Stevie slams Animal and drops a forearm.

    Back off to Hawk and Booker cheats to take over. The fans chant for LOD as Booker hits Hawk with the Axe Kick. Off to a front facelock as this is horribly boring. Hawk’s shoulder goes into the post and a side kick takes down Hawk. The winners here are #1 contenders. Animal finally comes in to beat up both guys with relative ease. Booker hits the Harlem Hangover but there’s no referee. Animal kicks Booker in the head and Hawk gets the pin.

    Rating: F. This was so boring it was almost unreal. Nothing happened here and the wrestling was rather bad. The Heat had to have guys with them that could move to get a good match out of them. This wasn’t the case here at all and it showed very badly. Terribly dull match.

    Ric Flair/Kevin Sullivan/Arn Anderson vs. Booty Man/Hulk Hogan/Randy Savage

    This is going to get a lot of time here. Big brawl right from the bell and the faces clear the ring of course. Arn wants time and doesn’t get it. He has to settle for a guy named Booty Man smacking him in the face. That’s your official starting pair and as they stare each other down, here comes Kimberly, the Diamond Doll, to stare at Booty Man. Who came up with that idea for a gimmick? I mean seriously, ass man? Did Billy Gunn rip that off?

    High Knee (get it?) sends Anderson to the corner as we’re spending a lot of time standing around. Booty Man beats up everyone as I think Anderson is still legal. Apparently not as it’s off to Flair. They can’t seem to go more than 10 seconds without pausing for something or other. Test of strength is won by Beefcake (that’s who it is if I didn’t mention that) as he’s been in there the entire time.

    Off to Savage because Savage vs. Flair hasn’t been done in a whole week at this point. Savage clears the ring as apparently there’s no Nitro the next week. Good to know. Hogan comes in to beat on Flair because that’s what he does. This has bee a total wreck so far. A double big boot by Hogan and ass man gets two on Flair. The heels haven’t been in control yet.

    Woman finally does something and grabs Savage’s leg to let Sullivan take over. Savage gets beaten on for a good while both in and out of the ring. He gets a shot in to take Kevin down and it’s back off to Booty Man. Not like Hogan should have to do anything you know. Booty Man sends everyone into Hogan’s boot and the leg drop ends Anderson.

    Rating: D. Just a big mess here with the heels looking like idiots for the sake of another of Hogan’s buddies. Flair was world champion here but you’d never know it based on what he had to do every week for the sake of Hogan and company. Very weak main event all around and guess what the main event of the next show is?

    Post match Hogan is handcuffed to the top rope and whipped one time to end the show. That would set up a lumberjack strap rematch for the next Nitro between these same guys.

    Overall Rating
    : D+. Well it was better than last week but that’s not saying very much. For the life of me I don’t get what WCW was thinking back in the day like this. They had the young roster they had at their fingertips and those guys can’t even get on TV once in a awhile? No Benoit or Guerrero? Not even in a token appearance? That’s WCW for you.

    Remember no show on 3/4 so don’t waste your time looking for one. Episode 27 is on March 11, 1996.
     
    #15
  16. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #27
    Date: March 11, 1996
    Location: Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
    Commentators: Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan, Steve McMichael

    Think the name of the building is long enough? Remember there was no March 4 show so this is the next one up. The next PPV, Uncensored, is on the 24th so we’re coming up on that which should shake you to your very core. Anyway, we have another weak main event tonight as it’s the same one from last week but with leather straps and lumberjacks, which is a great porn title. Anyway let’s get to it.

    There’s a new TV Champion apparently and it’s Lex Luger. He won it at a house show of all things apparently. Good enough I guess. That was the second time in a month that Luger had won it at a house show. Well it gives people a reason to go to the shows I guess.

    The announcers talk for awhile about the main event later.

    Jim Duggan vs. The Giant

    Nothing wrong with an old squash to get us going here. Duggan runs right at Giant to get us going. Duggan really is a good sized guy which is something you don’t appreciate that often. Some fans have signs that say Call Brian and a phone number. They hammer away on each other but now it’s time for the bear hug from Giant. That Brian would apparently be Pillman and Bischoff went out to ringside himself to take care of it. Most interesting indeed.

    Duggan bites the nose to get out of the hold and Giant is getting mad. Jim hammers away and gets a clothesline to send Giant to the floor. He tries the taped fist which gets him nowhere as Giant is uh, large. Right back to the bear hug but this time Duggan is sent to the floor. Duggan pulls the duck tape off the floor and tapes his hand up. Does he have a fetish for that or something? A few shots put Giant down and it takes Jimmy Hart’s interference to keep Giant in it. Chokeslam ends this.

    Rating: C. Oddly enough this was rather fun. This was a big brawl and that’s what it was supposed to be. They didn’t need to try to have a wrestling match out there and it worked…kind of I guess. Giant was at a weird point as he wasn’t able to break into the main event yet but wasn’t really clicking as a heel as he was so athletically awesome that the fans liked him.

    Another NASCAR guy is here. Oh it’s the same one from a few weeks ago. Apparently he’s doing well.

    Steiner Brothers vs. Road Warriors

    The Steiners might have jumped the Nasty Boys apparently and stolen the motorcycles of someone. Oddly enough this is one of two ever meetings between these teams, the other being a throwaway match in the Iron Man Tournament at Starrcade 1989. Why they never did it before then I’ll never know but there was never a major match between these guys.

    Hawk vs. Scott to start us off here. We’re not sure who jumped the Nasty Boys and apparently the motorcycles belong to the Steiners. Hawk chops away but walks into a nice spinning belly to belly out of the corner. Pumphandle slam takes Hawk down as this has been more or less all Scotty. And never mind as Hawk knocks Scotty down and gets a top rope clothesline and a big boot to take Scott down.

    Neckbreaker takes Scott down but he pops back up and gets a butterfly suplex to bring in Rick. Animal comes in as well and gets a powerslam and a dropkick. Rick flew across the ring off that dropkick. I’ve seen him sell less in an entire year than he’s doing here. Some Steiner Lines take Animal down though as this has been a big brawl so far. Belly to belly off the middle rope gives Rick an even bigger advantage.

    Another belly to belly by Scott sends Animal flying although it makes me wonder how limited Scott’s offense is. Tree of Woe for Animal with Scotty on the floor and pulling away on the neck. Off to Rick again as the Steiners are looking far better here. The fans like LOD a bit better though it seems. Off to a chinlock by Scotty which is broken up by Hawk KICKING HIM IN THE HEAD. I love that.

    Weak dropkick by Scott gets two on Animal. Double clothesline and both guys are down. We run down the card and hear about the Doomsday Cage Match (first time ever mentioned so I’d assume it was unveiled on Saturday Night or something) which was supposed to be a gauntlet cage match with Hogan having to beat Flair, Anderson, Luger and Sullivan. It would be changed sometime before the PPV, I think next week.

    Hot tag to Hawk who cleans house. The LOD beats up both Steiners and sends Scott to the floor. Doomsday Device takes Rick down but Scott saves. Scott throws Animal into the railing and it’s an attempt at a Doomsday Device to Hawk. That gets broken up and everyone is down. Frankensteiner to Animal gets one as Hawk saves again. Steiner Bulldog to Hawk but Animal pops Rick in the head with part of the spike padding and Hawk steals the pin.

    Rating: C+. Nothing wrong with a big old brawl for some legends. This wasn’t bad here as both teams were no selling everything which can be fun at times as it was here. The ending was a bit of a cop out though which hurts it, but I can live with that as they needed the momentum more. I still don’t get why they didn’t have the big match with these guys though. Never got that at all.

    Scott says that LOD didn’t deserve to win and the Steiners are here to fight them. Scott talks about coming where the competition was and won’t answer anything about the Nasty Boys.

    TV Title: Lex Luger vs. Alex Wright

    I’d assume this is a title match. Johnny B. Badd was TV Champion but he bailed and would debut at Mania. Alex gets a dropkick to take over and throws on an armbar. Luger tries to stop for a breath but Wright dives over the top to take him out. This is one of those matches where they’re letting Wright get in some offense before Luger cranks it up and ends him.

    Speaking of which here’s a knee to the back of Wright to send him to the floor. After a brief beating Wright gets a rotating cross body off the top rope for no cover. Luger gets something like a snake eyes in the corner to take over again. Loch Ness and Giant will both be lumberjacks later apparently. Wright makes a brief comeback and gets a leg lariat for two.

    Missile dropkick gets no cover for Wright. He goes up for a moonsault press but Jimmy Hart interferes by grabbing the leg. Luger pulls Wright off and gets the easy pin. Kind of an anti-climactic ending as I was expecting the Rack. Luger is mad about Hart being out there as he wasn’t out there for the majority of the match. Still decent though.

    Rating: C. Good stuff so far here for the most part. Wright was a guy that was able to do good things in the ring when he had to. Luger’s push towards the dark side continues which would be accelerated soon after this, although Luger would be a face again by the summer due to the NWO. Not bad here though and it was perfectly acceptable.

    Hulk Hogan/Randy Savage/Booty Man vs. Kevin Sullivan/Arn Anderson/Ric Flair

    Everyone will have straps that they can use here. There are also lumberjacks around the ring. Giant immediately grabs Hogan and the fight is on. Giant and Loch Ness mess up and hit each other so they get into a brawl of their own. That would be an ugly match at Uncensored. Every one is in the Foley flannel here. Booty Man and Sullivan are the only ones using the straps.

    Kimberly comes down to stare at Beefcake/Booty Man. Egads. There don’t seem to be tags required in this. Flair tries to leave but Animal carries him back to the ring. This is more or less a riot instead of an actual match. There is absolutely nothing to say here as everything is all over the place. Hogan beats up some lumberjacks including DDP. Like I said, total mess here with nothing resembling a coherent match.

    Flair and Hogan are FINALLY strapped together as Hogan still has a bad eye. No other pair is strapped together. Oh wait they’re not. They all have straps of their own. Shouldn’t that be something clear from the beginning? Big boot and leg drop to Flair out of nowhere end this. One of the biggest messes I’ve ever seen.

    Rating: D-. This wasn’t even a match but rather just a mess. Was there a point to this at all? The lumberjacks barely paid attention to the match at all and just brawled the entire time. There was no way to tell what was going on and that’s not a good thing. Just an overbooked mess with no way of telling what happened at all. Not liking it at all.

    The losing team bitches about Hogan. Anderson says they’re married and that this wasn’t wrestling. Flair says you can beat up any of the three of them but don’t touch Woman. He wants Hogan and Savage. It’s so sad that they made Flair into this raving lunatic character because of Hogan.

    Flair storms the announcers’ booth to end this.

    Overall Rating: B-. I was really liking this show up until the very ending. The main event was just awful but up to there it was kind of awesome in a wild sense. The matches were up tempo and big brawls which was kind of like something out of the Attitude Era. I liked this but the ending was pretty weak. Shame that Uncensored was completely awful as a result.
     
    #16
  17. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #28
    Date: March 18, 1996
    Location: UTC Arena, Chattanooga, Tennessee
    Commentators: Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan, Steve McMichael

    It’s the final show before Uncensored which means we can get to it and then get on towards the main attraction of the year. The main event tonight is a tornado tag match with Hogan and Savage vs. Sullivan and Flair. This isn’t exactly an enthralling looking show but let’s get to it so we can get done with Uncensored.

    After the theme song we open with Giant and Loch Ness fighting in the aisle. Apparently it’s supposed to be Luger vs. Loch Ness but Giant isn’t thrilled with that idea. Eric calls this the War Zone. Not sure if that was a jab or not. Luger comes out and poses and then just shakes his head and walks past the monsters fighting. Apparently this is a match.

    TV Title: Lex Luger vs. Loch Ness

    The bell rings and Loch Ness is on the floor so the match lasts 13 seconds and Luger wins via count out. The big celebration by Luger is hilarious.

    Luger runs up to the announce table and says he now holds the record for the fastest title defense in WCW history. This is hilarious.

    Tony interviews the Mega Powers and we’re told that it’s now the two of them in the Doomsday Cage. Basically they say it’s awesome and not about titles. In other words, the selling point was about the big cage match which has never been explained until the show itself.

    Public Enemy vs. Steiner Brothers

    This is a standby match apparently because of the other match going short. Public Enemy brings a table with them. Heenan still wants to know why Rick wears earmuffs. Scott and Rocco Rock start us off here with Rock getting caught in a tilt-a-whirl slam. Press slam hits and Rocco rolls out onto the table. That goes nowhere and it’s a double tag. Nice pop for Rick.

    Steiner gets a suplex/slam so we’re told that Dennis Rodman has been banned for six games by the NBA. What the hell? No one ever accused Eric of making a ton of sense I guess. It breaks down and Grunge gets a bulldog to Rick into a plastic chair. It’s going to be Booker T as Sting’s partner in the Chicago Street Fight. WAY too much stuff, like that, was announced on WCW Saturday Night.

    Rocco gets a DDT on Rick but gets powerslammed off the top. Off to Scott who powers Rocco around and gets something like a T-Bone off the top. Rocco tries something like an Asai Moonsault in the ring for two. Grunge gets two as well. We hear about the Cruiserweight Title tournament as we use this match to talk about everything other than the match.

    It turns into a brawl which surprisingly enough the Steiners seem to be winning at. Rick is put onto the table but Rocco misses his over the top flipping dive to send himself crashing through the table. Back in the ring the Steiner Bulldog ends Grunge in a match that was far better than it should have been.

    Rating: C+. I’ve been liking these shows a lot better in the previous two weeks as they’re letting the guys brawl a lot more and it’s working for the most part. Public Enemy did a lot better than you would expect them to in the technical stuff and the table spot was a nice touch. Fun match here with some good brawling to keep us entertained.

    Arn Anderson vs. Booty Man

    We hear about Booty Man vs. DDP where Page loses everything including his career if he loses. Guess what happened there. Booty Man takes over to start and Arn is in big trouble. Why did Beefcake always have holes in his tights? That’s rather odd indeed. We’re two minutes into this and Anderson has had zero offense at all.

    He hits the floor to chill and gets a nee to the ribs to break the momentum. Anderson takes over and works on the arm as this is a really boring match so far. Booty Man takes over again and gets a slam. Back drop puts Anderson down again and it’s time to punch. Here’s the Booty Girl (Kimberly) to swoon over Beefcake a bit. Woman gets in her face and Booty Man gets drilled checking on her. A high knee (get it?) takes Anderson out and Booty Man pins Arn Anderson. I give up.

    Rating: D. Boring as hell match that had a highlight of a hot woman coming down to ringside. It’s never a good sign when that’s your high point to a 6 minute match. Anderson looked more or less like an idiot out there and had to job to another one of Hogan’s buddies. And people wonder why the NWO was welcomed with open arms.

    Nasty Boys vs. Road Warriors

    Oh dear indeed this could be a hard one to sit through. The fight is on immediately as you would expect. The Nasties are all taped up after being jumped last week. We head to the floor almost immediately and we take a break. There’s no semblance of wrestling here which has been a common theme as of late. I guess it’s for the idea of things being like they’ll be at Uncensored which makes the whole idea of it being one night only kind of lose its luster.

    Animal rips the tape out of Knobbs so Sags hits him in the head with a chair. Animal pops him back with it as somehow this hasn’t been thrown out yet. Hawk vs. Knobbs now as we get down to something resembling a match. Splash hits Knobbs for no cover. Okerlund has the flu apparently. That explains Tony being there earlier.

    With Animal distracting the referee Hawk hits Knobbs low for a big pop. Powerslam by Animal gets no cover either. Elbow drop gets two but a splash gets knees. Sags comes in for the first time as it’s a brawl again. The Steiners run in and Rick throws in the spike he got hit in the head with last week. Animal pops Knobbs with it to end this.

    Rating: D+. These are fine once in awhile but when it becomes the norm for the show it gets annoying. It doesn’t help that this three way feud never went anywhere but that’s more due to the NWO than anything else. Not a horrible match but I’d like to see some more wrestling rather than just insane brawling all the time. Granted that’s just me.

    Ric Flair/Kevin Sullivan vs. Randy Savage/Hulk Hogan

    Naturally nothing Flair does works on Hogan because why in the world would we want the world champion to look impressive? Hogan puts a Macho Man foam hat on Flair’s head and beats on him even more. Eric points out that Hogan has already beaten everyone. That was basically the idea behind this match: we had no one left to face him so let’s just have him fight everyone at once. How well do you think this went over?

    This has been mostly Hogan vs. Flair and remember they don’t have to tag here as it’s Texas (despite being in Tennessee) Tornado rules. We go split screen with both screens maybe filling in a quarter of the screen. You know, because we need a split screen for Savage alone pulling himself up. Eric keeps babbling about Dennis Rodman possibly being at Uncensored which of course he wasn’t at.

    They switch off Flair takes Savage down. That can’t happen though so Hogan hammers away on him instead. Finally the heels take over for a bit and it’s a Figure Four on Savage. Instead of SAVING HIS PARTNER Hogan puts one on Taskmaster. Savage reverses his and Flair lets it go. Flair shoves the referee so the referee shoves Flair.

    Here comes the Mega Powers as it’s 10PM so we’re going to stay with it, since the C in WCW stands for Commitment! Hogan and Flair slug it out and guess who wins there. Split screen time again as the heels are in control. Luckily this one doesn’t last as long as Sullivan chokes away at Hogan. More slugging out as the Mega Powers get going again.

    Woman pops Hogan in the bad eye again but Hogan launches Flair off again as is his custom. He Hulks Up and here comes Anderson. Anderson saves Flair from the leg drop and Brian Pillman comes out with a chair and it’s a double DQ. In a Texas Tornado match, there was a double DQ. And people have the nerve to wonder why this company was looked down upon as being idiotic?

    Rating: D. I’m getting REALLY tired of these brawls. They were fun at first but when you know what’s coming and that there’s no chance in hell that Hogan and Savage will flat out lose they lose their luster really fast. Not a fan of these things and thankfully they’ll calm way down after this week’s show.

    Booty Man comes out to help Hogan and Savage as Anderson waves out….oh here we go….Zeus and a guy named Ultimate Solution. These guys wrestled a total of one match in WCW and it would be on Sunday. Oh and Zeus is Z-Gangsta here. No contact here of course as Hogan and company bail. Hogan is all panicky now.

    Tony goes in to talk to these new guys that comprise the Alliance to End Hulkamania. Sullivan rants a lot and says the big white guy is the Final Solution. Anyone that knows anything about World War II knows that this was a REALLY STUPID NAME. Everyone says Hogan is done and mention Savage a bit also.

    The announcers talk a bit and we’re done.

    Overall Rating: D+. Far weaker show this week as they suddenly seemed to crank it through the roof for Uncensored. The problem is that it became clear that they had no idea what they were going to be doing there. The majority of the matches got zero build on this show or any episode of Nitro in the recent memory here. Not much here at all and the PPV was even worse.

    Here’s Uncensored.

    Part 1:

    http://forums.wrestlezone.com/showthread.php?p=1469938#post1469938

    Part 2:

    http://forums.wrestlezone.com/showthread.php?p=1469939#post1469939
     
    #17
  18. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #29
    Date: March 25, 1996
    Location: Von Braun Center, Huntsville, Alabama
    Attendance: 3,300
    Commentators: Steve McMichael, Bobby Heenan, Eric Bischoff

    We’re finally past Uncensored here which means the countdown can begin until we get to May 27 and the NWO. There’s no PPV in April so the next major show is May 19 with Slamboree. Last night Hogan dominated….again, and Giant won a shot at Flair for the title later tonight. There isn’t much else from last night’s disaster, so let’s get to it.

    There are three title matches tonight with the world, US and tag title matches. Last night, just the US was defended.

    Belfast Bruiser vs. Randy Savage

    Bruiser is more commonly known as Finlay. We hear about how awesome Hogan was last night with Savage just kind of being there. Ignore that Savage got the pin. Finlay is undefeated at this point so this is a semi-big match. He’s a big brawler that messed up Regal’s face last night and the announcers do a good job of hyping Finlay up.

    The Irishman gets the European Uppercut which is the move that messed Regal up last night. It doesn’t get him anywhere but at least he hit it. Savage cranks it up and we hit the floor. Savage’s bad arm goes into the post though and Mach is in trouble. Finlay drops him across the guardrail and Savage is reeling.

    Finlay works on the legit bad arm of Savage which took forever to heal. Savage is thrown into the crowd and we finally bring up the idea that Savage might be tired because he was in a huge cage match last night for a long time. Back in the ring and Finlay gets two. Savage makes a very brief comeback, avoids a shoulder in the corner which causes Finlay to hit the post and gets the elbow for the pin. Yeah Savage was a bit limited at this point, but his arm was seriously messed up.

    Rating: C-. Weak match here but like I said a few times, Savage wasn’t his usual self and you could see that very clearly here. He was trying and they made Finlay look ok as it was one mistake and then a big move that gave Savage the win. Either way it was pretty dull but nothing all that terrible I guess.

    Flair and the girls say tonight they’ll slay a fire breathing giant. He rants about how awesome he is and says Luger is on his list now. The girls agree that Flair is better than Luger as well. This was really entertaining for some reason.

    US Title: Konnan vs. Mr. JL

    JL stands for Jerry Lynn as we’ve been through before. We hear about Pillman being gone from the company now which would be a slight problem they would have around this time as Johnny B. Badd is gone now as well. JL sends him to the floor quickly. JL is on a roll at the moment, having beaten Malenko in the Cruiserweight Title Tournament. Konnan grabs the arm but JL escapes again.

    Savage is apparently freaking out in the back and security is having to hold him back from killing Flair. Modified surfboard by Konnan now as JL is in trouble. They speed things up and a back elbow by JL puts both guys down. Springboard missile dropkick to the back of Konnan as this is just a slight step before being awesome. We hear about Benoit and Liger advancing in the tournament, none of which was aired on TV and about half of which was in Japan. Go figure.

    Konnan tries a monkey flip but JL drops onto it and gets two. Nice simple counter there and it almost works. Konnan thinks about going up top but shifts to the middle one instead which fails. DDT gets two for JL. Off to the other corner and Konnan gets an Alabama Slam out of said corner for the pin via a jackknife cover. Ending was rather fast.

    Rating: B-. Nice fast paced match out there and that made things better. The key thing to this was that it’s completely different from the previous show. What this does is give the fans something else to get into. Instead of like modern WWE where it’s the same basic style every match, this was polar opposite from the first one, which is the right idea for a show like this. Fun match here but Rey would debut in about three months and make this look like amateur hour.

    Disco Inferno vs. Booty Man

    We hear about Nitro Parties which were interesting ideas that actually worked for awhile. Battle of the asses here I guess. Booty Man takes over to start as Kimberly comes out again. She blows Booty Man a kiss and a running high knee ends this in maybe 75 seconds. Total squash.

    Tag Titles: Lex Luger/Sting vs. American Males

    This should be rather squash like. When Sting is looking at Luger, Luger slaps hands. When Sting isn’t looking, Luger doesn’t do it. Subtle things like those are always awesome. After a brief break (including an ad for WCW Magazine which I vaguely remember) we’re back with Luger vs. Riggs to start us off. This is the pre-half blind Riggs. Riggs was pretty worthless but he could throw a good dropkick.

    Luger gets ticked off as we talk about the Chicago street fight that happened in Mississippi last night. Bagwell gets beaten down by Luger on the floor but Sting pulls Luger off. The champions have a bit of a disagreement here but nothing comes of it. Off to Sting vs. Bagwell which is teacher vs. student actually. Sting easily overpowers him and gets some slams.

    Bagwell applauds him and it’s back off to Riggs. Sting is ridiculously popular. Luger hammers on Riggs now as this is rather boring. Double hiptoss by the challengers gets two. Luger is clearly wrestling as a heel here but he gets taken down by an elbow by Bagwell. Off to Riggs and Sting, who is somehow on the heel team by default. Sting clears house and gets a cross body which Bagwell stops cold when he could have broken it up. That’s good enough for the pin anyway. Luger won’t hand Sting a belt.

    Rating: D+. This was surprisingly sloppy here with both teams kind of looking out of it. Maybe it’s from the champions having long matches the previous night but this was a far step below what they would usually do. Granted no one thought the challengers had a chance so that probably hurt a bit. Face vs. face is a problem too so they were against a lot here and it caught up with them.

    WCW World Title: The Giant vs. Ric Flair

    Somehow Giant has been around about 6 months and is a former world champion here. Liz has gotten half of Savage’s money and is throwing it to the crowd. Savage runs down the aisle after Flair but security ACTUALLY STOPS HIM!!! Wow indeed. WWE, hire these guys immediately!!! Now let’s talk about Hogan since we haven’t done that much tonight. He’ll be back next week. Pay no attention to the world title match here. Hogan is going to be here next week!!!

    Giant shoves Flair around with ease so the champion hits the floor for a bit. Back in and Flair says stand there so I can ram into you. That gets Flair knocked down again and then press slammed. Ric tries to leave and that gets him nowhere. It’s amazing to see Giant just pick him up and put him back in the ring with ease. I always wondered what would have happened with El Gigante vs. Flair which was teased in the early 90s. This is something close to it I guess.

    Flair has been able to get nothing here. By that I mean his offense has connected but none of it has had any effect at all that we can tell. Bischoff is hyping up Hog Wild, as in a PPV four months away. Damn man. Giant throws him around a bit more and then goes up TO THE TOP! Giant misses him by literally four and a half feet but geez that looked awesome. I mean the soles of Giant’s feet cleared Flair.

    Giant still can’t be hurt until he misses a charge and goes to the floor. Flair gets a wire from Woman and chokes away but it’s not getting him anywhere. There’s the rope/wire again and finally a thumb to the eye slows Giant down a bit. Giant is on his knees and is up to Flair’s shoulders. He shrugs off all of Flair’s offense so Flair kicks him in the balls for the….non-DQ? How is that not a DQ?

    Woman chokes him some more and Flair goes up and you’re smart enough to figure that one out. There’s the chokeslam but the girls, Anderson and Sullivan comes in. Anderson pops Giant with a chair and hands it to Sullivan. Giant chokeslams Sullivan, more or less turning/semi-turning face. Chokeslams all around and this gets thrown out.

    Rating: C. Hard one to grade here as the idea was to make Giant look good and that certainly worked. He looked unstoppable in this match and Flair had nothing he could do at all. Giant would get the title in April and would hold it until August when he lost it to Hogan. The match was kind of boring but they had a different point here anyway.

    Overall Rating
    : B-. Action packed show this week but the wrestling was kind of questionable. It’s not a terrible show but you can start to see the issues of having the title matches all over TV: you run out of title matches for the PPV. By this I mean the world title as no one was going to pay to see JL or the American Males challenge for titles. Not a bad show but just kind of there at parts.
     
    #18
  19. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #30
    Date: April 1, 1996
    Location: CSU Convocation Center, Cleveland, Ohio
    Attendance: 7,000
    Commentators: Bobby Heenan, Eric Bischoff, Steve McMichael

    We’re in the eighth month of Nitro and finally into the 30s of the shows. The company moves towards Slamboree which hasn’t been mentioned yet but there’s some stuff to get through first. This is kind of a dead period for a few weeks so there isn’t much to say about this one. Let’s get to it.

    We open in the ring with Sting and Giant just about to start us off here. Well ok then.

    Giant vs. Sting

    This would be the main event of said Slamboree PPV. Giant swings but misses as we’re told that this was supposed to be Sting/Giant (why?) vs. Harlem Heat but Jimmy paid off the actual team. Sting hammers away but can’t get anywhere with him. Cross body just bounces off Giant which always looks cool. Sting manages to send him to the floor but Giant grabs him around the throat for a chokeslam from the apron. Sting manages to get a dropkick to send Giant flying to the floor. Luger runs in to help Sting and it’s thrown out. Too short to rate.

    Cue the theme song.

    We see a clip from before the show with Jimmy paying off Harlem Heat to leave their tag title opportunity. Wait why would Giant be Sting’s partner when Sting and Luger are champions?

    Flair defends against Luger later.

    Nasty Boys vs. Road Warriors vs. Steiner Brothers

    Rick vs. Knobbs to start us off in a rare (for this period and company) three way dance. Things quickly break down with Knobbs vs. Animal. I wish they were doing the version of this they were doing later in the history of the company where it would be three guys in the ring at once. Scott gets a pumphandle slam to Hawk for no cover. Hawk rams into the post shoulder first as this is kind of hard to follow.

    Back in and the shoulder is fine. Hawk takes Scott down with a neckbreaker and a fist drop for two. Animal vs. Scott now and Animal is sent into Rick who drills him and gets two after being tagged. WOW that was a badly written sentence. Sags apparently tags in and the Nastys beat up Scott. They’re tagging in and out insanely fast here. Hawk fights Sags on the floor and now has a choke on Rick in the ring. I have no idea how they keep jumping but they’re not editing it or anything. It’s that big a mess.

    Knobs hammers away on Rick and we take a break. There’s an explosion of pyro in front of a Nitro logo which probably scares half the crowd to death. Back with Rick vs. Animal. Now Sags just runs in when Animal tags Hawk. Ok so I’m not completely insane here. Knobs covers Hawk for two somehow. I’ve been watching this and I have no idea how we’re getting from point A to point B.

    Sags and Scott come in and make that Animal vs. Rick. I want this to end very badly as it’s getting very annoying. Now Knobs is in there. You’re supposed to tag I think but it doesn’t seem like they are. Knobs sends Rick HEAD FIRST into the post. That looked sick. Now Public Enemy comes out and hammers everyone. In the insanity Scott pins Knobs to win. What the hell ever man.

    Rating: F. In a match you’re supposed to be able to tell what’s going on. This was like something out of ECW’s worst nightmares. Terrible match and there was no way to tell what was going on as the rules kept being thrown out. Horrible match so of course it got about 15 minutes. Get on to ANYTHING else.

    Hulk Hogan/Booty Man vs. Arn Anderson/Kevin Sullivan

    Gee I wonder who wins here. After the entrances we take a break, complete with an ad for the Power Plant, set to what would become La Parka’s music. Heenan says tonight is his last night on Nitro for some reason. Booty Man vs. Anderson to start us off. They head to the floor with Anderson ramming him into the railing. Hogan (I think debuting the long tights here) takes Anderson’s head off with a clothesline. Scratch that as he had them at the PPV.

    Off to Booty Man vs. Sullivan now as we’re just waiting on the hot tag to Hogan here. Hogan finally comes in and gets ZERO reaction. Anderson takes him back to the corner as we continue to talk about Heenan leaving. I don’t remember that at all but I doubt anything comes of it. Hogan gets a hot shot of all things and a double noggin knocker to make sure we’re still in the Hogan comfort zone.

    Back off to Booty Man with Woman SCREECHING for Anderson to come on. Come on who? Uh I mean what. Yeah that’s it. Booty Man hammers on Sullivan on the floor and then goes back in for a sunset flip on Arn for two as Sullivan saves. Woman claws at Booty’s eyes (did I really just say that?) as we hear about how Woman wearing white is supposed to be bad.

    Booty Man is sent to the floor again and we get into a standard heel formula with Booty Man playing Ricky Morton. And never mind as Hogan is tagged in rather fast. Still no reaction but the human sun is in there now. Liz, looking AWESOME in a leather skirt and thigh high boots, tries to help Anderson. Kimberly gives Hogan a show and it goes into Sullivan’s eye to end this.

    Rating: D. Another weak main event level tag match here with nothing going on for the most part. It’s more Hogan vs. Horsemen/Dungeon to further prove that the NWO was desperately needing. I think the vast majority of people were just done with this feud but they kept it going anyway. Didn’t like this one at all.

    Booty Man goes back to get the shoe and gets beaten down a bit.

    Gene comes in to talk to the winners and Booty Man says he has an idea. Why do I have a feeling it involves bags of cocaine? Apparently it’s a gimmick match of some sort.

    WCW World Title: Lex Luger vs. Ric Flair

    No show on the 8th apparently. Debra McMichael is in the front row which would eventually lead to foreshadowing. Luger challenging Flair for the world title just feels right. Flair struts a lot to start as you would expect. Luger overpowers him as you would also expect. Well at least they’re doing things simply to start. Press slam sends Flair down. This is about the same opening of their matches they always had which is fine.

    Flair gets in a shot and works Luger over in the corner. Luger fires away with clotheslines and Flair takes a break. Back in and it’s a straight thumb to the eye to put Luger on defense again. Luger gets going again as this crowd is DEAD. They’ve been this way all night though so it’s not just the match. Luger chases the girls off and Flair is able to get a knee in to take over for about the fourth time.

    Bischoff uses the term stomping a mudhole which Austin certainly wasn’t using yet. Heenan talks about taking some time off to relax which I think would set up him being the coach for the Horsemen at the Great American Bash. Figure Four goes on and Luger almost gets pinned in it. Luger gets up and a sunset flip gets two. Superplex to Flair and Luger growls at him. Powerslam hits and Woman pops up with a cup of coffee. Rack goes on but Liz has the referee. Coffee to Luger’s eyes sets up a rollup (and feet on the ropes of course) for Flair to retain.

    Rating: C-. This was there for the sake of having a main event. That’s not so bad but at the same time it could have been more. These two could have a passable match in their sleep which is a good thing. At least it wasn’t that bad, but it was there for the sake of being there which is never a good thing. Not awful though.

    Heenan says goodbye to the announcers. He has one more thing to say. APRIL FOOL’S! That was awesome as I totally forgot it was April 1.

    Overall Rating: D. I wasn’t into this one at all. They were seemingly running around like crazy with no real idea of where they were going with this. It’s not their worst show but it clearly wasn’t one of their better ones. That week off probably helped them a lot as they needed time to recharge. Pretty clear they had no plan for Slamboree other than Lethal Lottery, which sucked. Weak show tonight.

    Remember: no show for April 8. Next show will be the one dates April 15.
     
    #19
  20. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #31
    Date: April 15, 1996
    Location: Charleston Civic Center, Charleston, West Virginia
    Commentators: Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan, Steve McMichael

    In case you’re looking around for it there was no show on the 8th so this is the next episode in order. We’re rapidly approaching Slamboree and after that, Hall jumping the guard rail. Anyway tonight is probably just another show as we haven’t got anything set in stone for the PPV yet. The main event is Luger/Sting vs. Flair/Giant for the tag titles for some reason. Let’s get to it.

    Bischoff immediately makes fun of WWF for not being live. It should be noted that a week later Nitro would tape two shows in Albany.

    Arn Anderson/Kevin Sullivan vs. Hulk Hogan

    This starts almost immediately with no announcement of who Hogan was fighting. They jump Hogan when he comes in but Hogan fights them off, grabbing a figure four (horrible one) on Sullivan. There are some weird stips in this. If Hogan wins he gets five minutes alone with whatever manager he wants, and apparently that means the girls also. If the heels win they get five minutes with Kimberly. WHAT KIND OF SHOW AM I WATCHING?????

    Booty Man is injured apparently which is why this is under handicap rules. Hogan gets knocked into the corner which gets Sullivan and Anderson nowhere. They don’t have to tag here either. Chair to the head of both guys as I guess this is no DQ. Mongo is already pushing for Hogan to win the title. Well of course he is. Back into the ring for more double teaming as Kimberly is here now. Spike Piledriver is reversed into a slingshot to send Anderson into Sullivan. Slam to the Boston Midget sets up the leg drop to end this out of nowhere.

    Rating: D+. This is far different than most Hogan matches you’ll ever see. It’s barely a match as it’s definitely closer to a big fight. Hogan didn’t do much more than punch, slam and hit the leg drop. Ok so maybe it’s very similar to what he usually did. It’s pretty clear they have no idea what they’re doing at this point and are booking things week to week as there was little to no point to this.

    Hogan throws Woman and Liz into the ring as Mongo says not to fight it. Think this is creepy at all? Instead Hogan goes after Jimmy who tries to throw powder which misses. Hogan pulls part of the suit off and Heenan shouts that he’s bareback. How X-Rated are we getting here? Thankfully Giant comes out for the save as this was one of the most oddly booked openings I can ever remember. Chokeslam to Hogan is totally no sold as Hogan is already back up.

    Big boot sets up the slam as Gene Okerlund is in the ring for no apparent reason. Hogan picks up Gene and Heenan FREAKS. Hogan says nothing of note other than he’s going to get the title back. This was one of the oddest openings you’ll ever see as there was no point to anything that I could see and the whole thing was rushed. It’s like they’re not scripted at all here, which would make a lot of sense actually.

    Heenan thinks Savage is nuts. It took him how long to come to this? Thank goodness he’s got his brains.

    Public Enemy vs. Nasty Boys

    THANKFULLY this is a street fight. The Nasties jump Public Enemy in the aisle to get us going. This is as a result of Public Enemy jumping the Nasties a few weeks ago and keeping them out of a tag match. We go split screen early which means each is getting about ¼ of the screen since we need a BIG WCW LOGO on the top so we know what we’re watching. Trashcan is put on Grunge’s head and down he goes.

    Rocco takes down the Nasties as we hear about Slamboree and the Lethal Lottery which Public Enemy gets to team together because WCW is stupid. We realize that the split screens are showing the same thing so we merge them together ragain. Mongo says use a fan as a weapon. That’s actually a funny visual. Table is set up and there it goes already.

    In the ring Rocco misses a leg drop with a garbage can under him. This is like a hardcore match but without the comedy. I’m sure ECW had nothing to do with this making it to Nitro at all also right? Down goes a cameraman so we have to drop the split screen thing thank goodness. Blast it we’re back to it again. Turner just had to be able to afford extra cameramen right?

    Rock is sent into the railing as this is one of the biggest messes I’ve ever seen in my entire life. Ok not really but I’m trying to get space filled in. Mongo says this is like a golf crowd. Remember that this is before Tiger Woods so that’s really not a compliment. Grunge goes into a table he brought in as this is dragging BAD. More weapon shots as Knobbs goes up for a shoulder but Grunge’s foot is on the rope. I give up. Grunge gets some horribly weak chair shots as Bischoff brags about having a show in a tornado warning. FINALLY Knobbs puts Grunge through a table to end it.

    Rating: F+. WAY too long here with neither standing out at all. They were trying to have a hardcore match and while it worked, having to go on nearly 10 minutes is WAY too much. These teams feuded for awhile which never went anywhere because this was the only kind of match they could have. At least it’s over now.

    And of course it isn’t yet as the Public Enemy puts Sags through a table to almost zero reaction.

    Randy Savage vs. Robert Eaton

    Yes it’s Bobby as Regal’s partner. Savage is more or less a psycho here due to Flair. The bell rings after a quick break as it’s all Savage. Apparently he’s going to be in a show called Dial M for Monkey. It’s a cartoon and I kid you not, Fred Flintstone is in the audience. Eaton takes over and imitates Flair for no apparent reason.

    Figure Four goes on as Eaton is very stupid apparently. He gets a Horsemen shirt from somewhere which is enough to get Savage to wake up and break the hold. We go to the floor for a few seconds until Savage cranks it up and wins it with the elbow. No rating as this was really short and just there to set up the post match stuff.

    Savage tries to beat up Eaton more but a bunch of jobbers come out to stop him. Savage is like screw it and jumps over them with another elbow. Cops pop in and handcuff him to get him out of the ring.

    Tag Titles: Sting/Lex Luger vs. Ric Flair/The Giant

    Flair hits on Debra McMichael (Mongo’s wife) on the way to the ring again. Luger doesn’t have the TV Title here despite being champion. Sting vs. Flair to start which certainly works. Flair stalls so Sting plays to the crowd. That’s one of the many reasons why Sting is awesome. The fans were probably a bit bored so Sting drags them right back into it before he loses them. Little things like those are what make you great and they did for Sting.

    Sting overpowers Flair to start with a gorilla press and a dropkick to send Giant to the floor. Bischoff calls it a jumping side kick for some reason. Dude, quit overthinking it. Gorilla press by Luger now and Giant keeps throwing him back in for a funny bit. Flair gets to the floor and runs up to Giant to chop him like an idiot as we take a break.

    Back and Giant is back in the corner. He takes a poke at Luger to take him down and here comes the big dude. Giant gets a nice suplex which you rarely see him use and it’s back off to Flair. We’re fully into the main event tag style here. Flair gets the knee drop to Luger for two. Off to Giant again who cleans house with Luger. There’s the Figure Four as Giant is only staying in there for about 30 seconds at a time.

    Sting comes in for the save and somehow misses Flair with a kick as the hold stays on. Luger was in the hold well over a minute so let’s see how long before he stops limping. Back off to Giant who presses Luger with ease before stepping on him. That has to hurt beyond belief. Flair comes back in and Luger’s knee seems fine all of a sudden. Shocking I know.

    His knee is even solid enough to slam Flair off the top rope. Apparently even bad knees are able to observe traditions. Hot tag Sting to a very limited reaction. Superplex puts Flair down and everything breaks down. Scorpion goes on so Woman tries to throw hot coffee in Luger’s eye. Package ducks and Sting takes it in the eyes (make your own jokes) for the DQ.

    Rating: C-. Just a standard main event tag match here which wasn’t anything great. I don’t think anyone thought we were going to have new champions here and we never were going to. This would be the main event the next week also until Giant snapped and took the title from Flair the next week, as in the 29th.

    Flair and Giant beat down Sting post match and leave him laying.

    Heenan tries to demonstrate the handcuffs that Savage was put in and cuffs himself to end the show.

    Overall Rating: D-. Very bad show here which felt like it was being thrown together as we were going. The matches were bad, nothing was added to anything regarding the PPV and the whole thing was a big mess. The WAY too long street fight was awful and the main event was just ok. Not much of a show at all here which would be a sign until Hall showed up.
     
    #20
  21. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #32
    Date: April 22, 1996
    Location: Albany Civic Center, Albany, New York
    Commentators: Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan, Steve McMichael

    Well after last week’s horrible show we’re back with a very similar card. However on this one we have Benoit vs. Guerrero so this should be better already. The main event is the same though with Flair/Giant challenging Sting/Luger for the tag titles. Apparently if Flair gets pinned tonight he loses the world title to the pinner and if Luger gets pinned he loses the tag and TV Titles. Interesting I guess. Let’s get to it.

    McMichael’s dog has the glasses where the eyes are on springs. Oh my aching head.

    Public Enemy vs. American Males

    Bischoff gives away the results of Raw which is always an interesting thing to see. Also of course next week would be a taped Nitro but who cares? Public Enemy puts a table up at ringside pre-match. Bagwell is going to be in a movie apparently. I wonder if it’s hard or soft. We actually talk about Slamboree a bit which is a first I believe. The Males clear the ring and hits some decent dives to further their advantage.

    We talk about Brian Pillman who has been in a car wreck, which is what kind of led to his death. Grunge vs. Riggs is the official starting match. Dropkick puts Grunge on the floor and a double dropkick puts Rocco down for no cover. Off to Bagwell for all of four seconds and a wristlock before Riggs comes back in. Grunge vs. Bagwell again with Grunge choking away.

    Now Rocco in with a Lionsault for two. These teams are tagging in and out very quickly. After a brief beatdown, Bagwell gets a cross body out of the corner for two. This hasn’t been much of a match at all. Swanton Bomb (kind of) by Rocco misses and it’s time for Riggs to come in. He and Grunge come in at the same time and Riggs gets a forearm for two. Everything breaks down and Public Enemy throws Riggs over the top which is a DQ this week so that’s it. Egads.

    Rating: F. The match was boring and then the ending made it even worse. This company changed the rules for over the top every week and here it happened to be a DQ. It’s a weak DQ and a cheap ending to give Public Enemy the loss. If you want a DQ then let the hardcore crazy people be hardcore and crazy. Not that hard.

    Bagwell goes through a table post match.

    We get the first round draw for Lethal Lottery at Slamboree. Hooters Girls help out here for some reason. This is “random” mind you.

    Barbarian/Bobby Walker vs. Meng/Hugh Morrus
    Big Bubba/Stevie Ray vs. Fire and Ice (yes a regular team was “randomly” drawn. That’s the second one drawn)
    Ric Flair/Randy Savage vs. Arn Anderson/Eddie Guerrero (awesome pairings there)

    Slamboree sucked if you didn’t get that.

    Chris Benoit vs. Eddie Guerrero

    Benoit charges him into the corner and taps him on the jaw like a little boy. Eddie, ever the showman, does exactly the same thing. Benoit hits the floor and Eddie teases a big dive so Benoit backs off. Smart psychopath. Back in the ring for some nice technical stuff as you would expect. Benoit hits a chinlock and we take a break. Back and we’re still in the chinlock which is always a weird thing to see. Bischoff swears it’s live so it’s hard to say.

    We hear about the Cruiserweight Title tournament which is mainly happening in Japan (allegedly) because WCW wasn’t that smart. Belly to back by Eddie gets him out of the hold, only for a suplex to hit him for two also. Apparently Savage is being restrained in the back by cops. They slug it out as we talk about Savage some more. Eddie is sent to the floor and comes back in with a top rope rana for two. In the corner Eddie tries a sunset flip but Benoit kneels down on it and grabs the ropes for the pin.

    Rating: C+. Well they had better ones, that’s for sure. Not a bad match and the lack of time due to the commercial hurt it a lot. The only think I can say here isn’t Benoit vs. Guerrero. I don’t think they’re capable of having a bad match so what were you really expecting here?

    Some WCW suit comes out and says Savage needs to play nice. Savage gets in his face and says something about blowing up city hall. The suit says get a therapist. This was, in a word, pointless.

    Meng vs. Jim Duggan

    Apparently in the main event partners can pin partners. Oh dear. After a break before the match, Meng is on the floor hiding a bit. Back in and Duggan hammers away, only to have Meng run away again. Dude, Meng used to be a monster and unstoppable and now he’s running from Jim Duggan who punches him in the head. I give up. Duggan hammers him down and Meng goes to the floor again.

    Bischoff runs down the WWF results again as Heenan FREAKS over the idea of Flair having the world, tag and TV titles. Bischoff talks about Hogan for no apparent reason as they’re really trying not to talk about this all punches all the time match. Duggan starts no selling until Meng finally beats him down a bit. Now Meng’s head hardens about 10 times in the middle of the match and we hit the nerve hold.

    Duggan fights up and we go right back to the nerve hold. This is basically turning into a match by who wants to sell less. Duggan hammers away as Meng gets back up. Three Point Clothesline misses and Meng pounds even more. Big boot gets two for the Tongan and Duggan hits the floor to wrap his hand up in tape. A shot with that is enough to get the pin.

    Rating: D. I wanted to hate this but there’s something kind of fun about two big guys just hammering away on each other until one goes down. It’s a horrible match and the selling is laughable but there’s something kind of fun about it for some weird reason. I think you’d have to see it to get the appeal.

    More Slamboree stuff.

    Dick Slater/Robert Eaton vs. Disco Inferno/Alex Wright
    Steven Regal/Belfast Bruiser vs. VK Wallstreet/Jim Duggan

    Yes, there were two regular teams, two teams of people that hated each other, and other opposite pairings. And this was legitimately said to be random. I have no idea how to respond to that but it’s great.

    TV Title/Tag Titles/World Title: Ric Flair/The Giant vs. Sting/Lex Luger

    All titles on the line, whoever is pinned loses the title to whomever. Flair is world champion, Luger is TV champion, Sting/Luger are tag champions. Flair hits on Debra one more time. Savage pops up to chase after Flair but gets arrested of course. Sting and Giant start us off. Apparently Giant has been offered a tryout with the Detroit Lions. Not a bad idea actually.

    Luger and Sting double up to clear the ring and the challengers take a breather. Back to Luger vs. Flair as Luger shows off his arms. Luger takes over with clotheslines and it’s Flair Flop time. Sting vs. Giant is announced in a grudge match which hasn’t really been a grudge. Off to Sting who has his usual good mini match with Flair.

    Slam off the top sends Flair flying. Superplex sends Flair out to the floor again as a kid that is maybe 8 wants to punch him. Stinger Splash against the railing misses though (of course. You would think he’d learn after awhile) and it’s off to Sting vs. Giant again. Why in the world would Flair want to be in the room against Sting? Have Giant go in there to try to win the tag titles and don’t run the risk of losing the world title.

    Mini-hot tag to Luger who cleans house. Giant grabs him for a chokeslam but Sting comes off the top with a chop block. Giant still has the grip on Luger so Sting hammers away which FINALLY breaks the grip. Woman slips hot coffee to Flair again and it goes into Giant’s eyes for the CHEAP DQ.

    Rating: D+. I hate matches like these where the whole thing is set up and they use a back door to avoid having to do something major. Not a horrible match but I hate the ending which is going to drive me crazy in the coming year. Also having the same ending two weeks in a row is just lazy booking.

    Flair begs off Giant as Gene comes in for a chat with the big man. Giant wants the title and Flair says apologize or else. The Giant goes after him and the champion bails.

    The announcers say the title match is on for next week and talk a lot to wrap things up.

    Overall Rating
    : F+. Other than Eddie vs. Benoit, this was awful. It was incredibly clear that they had no clue what they were doing from week to week. Thank goodness some things would change the next week and then about five weeks from here everything would change forever. Terrible show and quite possibly the worst in the entire series to date. That would of course get shattered later, but this was pretty bad.
     
    #21
  22. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #33
    Date: April 29, 1996
    Location: Albany Civic Center, Albany, New York
    Commentators: Eric Bischoff, Steve McMichael, Bobby Heenan

    We’re taped here so I better not hear Bischoff say this is a live one at all. Anyway tonight we’re finally getting closer to the arrival of Hall (May 27) and Slamboree (May 19) and also we have an important moment which we’ll get to later in the show. The main event is Flair vs. Giant for the title. Let’s get to it.

    The announcers run down the show and this is also the show with Finlay vs. Regal in the parking lot which is a rather well known brawl.

    Tag Titles: Sting/Lex Luger vs. Harlem Heat

    I guess this is the title match Harlem Heat got at Uncensored. And never mind as this is a rematch from Saturday Night. They wait for a bit before they get started officially with Sting vs. Booker thank goodness. Sting takes him down and actually hits his big elbow. Double tag brings in Stevie to hammer on Luger as we talk about Slamboree over and over again.

    The champs (Luger and Sting if you didn’t get that) change again as do the challengers. Sting pretends to play Ricky Morton for a bit but it’s Booker in trouble as we take a break. Back with Sting fighting out of a chinlock but Booker takes him down again. Unnamed Spinarooni sets up a side kick to put Sting down. Off to Stevie who hits a bicycle kick for no cover.

    Both guys go down as we talk about Slamboree (show SUCKED) even more. Hot tag to Luger who comes in and beats up Stevie and Booker with relative ease. Everything breaks down and Luger gets caught in a powerbomb/top rope elbow combo. Jimmy Hart comes in to try to throw in the towel but it’s not accepted. The distraction lets Sting grab a rollup for the pin.

    Rating: C. Just a TV tag match here and the Hart interference was kind of odd here. Apparently they did something similar on Saturday Night but since I’m not watching that show that doesn’t help me here. That’s one thing WWF has always gotten right: they always update stuff every show and it makes things far easier to keep track of.

    Steiner Brothers vs. Fire and Ice

    Scott Norton and Ice Train in case you’re not familiar. Rick vs. Ice Train to start us off. Rick is tentative to start and gets caught in a big old powerslam. He wakes up a bit and hits a big German suplex to bring in Scott. Uh make that both Scotts come in. Norton gets caught in a belly to belly as this is a physical match. Scott Steiner jumps off the top but gets caught in midair in a slam by Norton. Rick comes in and Norton no sells an elbow to bring in Train. Everything breaks down and Rick gets a Steiner Line to Train to end it. Far better than it sounds.

    Rating: C+. This was a nice hard hitting and physical match with Fire and Ice working rather well. Not a great match or anything as it didn’t even run 3:30 but for a TV match this was fast paced enough to make things fun and give us a decent little show. Fire and Ice went nowhere of course but the Steiners were always awesome.

    Here’s Flair to say he’s not afraid of Giant because he has women with him. Ok then. The women praise the champ a bit and that’s it.

    Belfast Brawler vs. Steven Regal

    This is joined in progress and is in the parking lot with a circle of cars around them. It’s a rematch from Uncensored and they fight over a cinder block. A bumper comes off a car and it goes into Regal’s stomach. Very stiff shots here. It’s so weird to see Regal being all young and flexible. Finlay gets choked by a seatbelt and Regal does as well.

    I know this probably sounds commonplace by today’s standards but this was unheard of at the time. It helps that it’s a very stiff fight also and feels more like a street fight than a match called a street fight. Finlay goes through a windshield and the throw punches until Regal grabs a bumper. Tombstone (Finlay’s finisher) on the concrete doesn’t work so Regal tries a Piledriver of his own on the car. They’re on a wide shot here as Regal manages to get the Piledriver on the hood for the pin. Brain: “He’s out of gas!”

    Rating: B. Like I said by today’s standards this isn’t a great match but for its time this was awesome stuff. They were pounding on each other out there and it made people want to watch WCW and find out what was going on here. Good stuff overall and a rather fun match which is still talked about today.

    WCW World Title: Ric Flair vs. The Giant

    Flair hits on Debra again which would eventually set up a tag match at the Great American Bash where Mongo joined the Horsemen. Giant shoves him around to start as the camera pans up at him. Flair charges at him and literally bounces off of him with a shoulder block. We hit the floor and Flair runs. Flair gets a jumping thumb to the eye but Giant shrugs a chop off.

    There’s your standard slam off the top for Flair and Giant gets a suplex for no cover. Giant tries a chokeslam but Flair holds onto the ropes and gets a low blow. Foreign object to the head of Giant and he’s out….not cold as the Figure Four goes on and it means nothing. Giant grabs him by the throat, pulls him to his feet, breaks the hold in the process and a chokeslam gives Giant his first non-shenanigan world title. For you trivia people out there, yes, Jimmy Hart did manage a legit world champion.

    Rating: C-. Can’t really give this a fair grade as it was more or less a squash but they were trying at least. Giant looked great which is the best thing they could have done. Never let it be said that Flair doesn’t put people over. Giant getting the title was fine and they would protect him for months, which is the right idea indeed. Fine for a squash, bad match otherwise.

    To say Jimmy is happy is an understatement. Giant shows that he’s getting better on the mic and says he’s a fighting champion and anyone can bring it on. He would hold the title until August when heel Hogan beat him.

    Sting vs. Giant for the title at Slamboree is made for the PPV to end the show.

    Overall Rating: C+. Well from a historical perspective this is one of the bigger ones they’ve head in a long time. The wrestling isn’t all that important but at the same time that certainly wasn’t the point. We’re finally getting ready to Slamboree which more or less had no plot at all other than the really bad Lethal Lottery. Anyway at least we’re a step closer to the Outsiders.
     
    #22
  23. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #34
    Date: May 6, 1996
    Location: Ocean Center, Daytona Beach, Florida
    Commentators: Steve McMichael, Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan

    It’s another week closer to the Outsiders and yes I know I say that a lot but at the same time there’s nothing at all to talk about otherwise. There isn’t really a main event tonight as we’re in a holding pattern until the PPV. There really isn’t anything else to say here so let’s get to it.

    Hugh Morrus vs. Randy Savage

    We’re already talking about the PPV in August of all things. No one ever said that Bischoff didn’t push his ideas. Morrus jumps Savage on the floor and the fight is on early. He controls early as Savage is in trouble. Morrus (Bill DeMott) puts the hat and glasses on and even the jacket just to make sure he’s going to die. Savage snaps (into it) and choeks Morrus over the top with the jacket and it’s a DQ very quickly.

    No rating here but the match was more of pushing the Savage is nuts angle than a match. Down goes the referee and it’s an elbow for him. Cops take Savage out. Shame this was all dropped for the NWO as it was something I wanted to see an ending to.

    Crippler Ray Stevens passed away and donations can be sent to the Cauliflower Alley Club. Now there’s something you won’t hear referenced more than once a year on TV.

    Jushin Thunder Liger vs. Dean Malenko

    Apparently Otani has won the Cruiserweight Title and he’ll debut on May 18 against Malenko on the PPV (switched to Worldwide where Malenko won to really start the division. Still don’t get the decision to put it on the Japanese dude at all). Naturally it’s technical stuff to start us off with Liger controlling for the most part. Flair comes out with the women for no apparent reason so we go split screen to look at him.

    Now let’s look at the crowd so we don’t see these two talented guys wrestle. We take a quick break and Flair is having a VIP dinner with the women on Macho Man’s money. Anyway Malenko throws on a leg lock as we actually see some of the match. The camera is really weird here as it keeps changing every few seconds, almost like TNA or ECW. Liger gets a big dive to the floor and both guys get two in the ring.

    Malenko hits his top rope gutbuster for no cover. A powerbomb is countered into a kind of odd looking cover for Liger for two. I would have thought the gutbuster would have ended it but this has been an odd match all around so I guess it fits just fine. Either way a tiger bomb ends this a few seconds later with Malenko getting the pin.

    Rating: C-. Uh…yeah. Not that it was bad but this was just an incredibly odd match. The camera was all over the place, it had more or less no flow to it and neither guy looked on his game at all. Most odd indeed and not a great or even particularly good match at all, which is rather surprising given who was in there.

    Flair and the females talk for a bit. What was the deal with Woman and Gene? That never made a ton of sense to me. Flair says he’s going to get the title back and talks about Lethal Lottery a bit. Woman says Flair is awesome and will be on top. Flair goes over to talk to Debra as apparently two women aren’t enough for him. He sends her a drink which is poured out. Liz says it’s ok because Randy has plenty of money.

    Glacier is coming. Oh my indeed. Sign of the times to put it mildly.

    Steven Regal vs. Sting

    So we have a guy that is banged up from a brawl last week and the #1 contender. Who do you think is going to win here? Regal is all taped up and Sting takes him down with ease and almost gets the Scorpion immediately but Regal gets the rope. We take a break with Regal overacting as only he can. Back with Sting running over Regal who backs off.

    Steven (still sound weird to call him that) grabs the arm and takes over with it, putting Sting on the mat. More talk about Slamboree as Regal chokes away. Sting has the minor league NASCAR number on his leg for no apparent reason. He finally gets going and counters out of a Pedigree position into a pin with a backdrop.

    Rating: D+. Just another match here as this whole show has felt a bit off. Not much of note here as both guys felt a bit off the entire time. Sting would kind of coast for a long time and this was no exception at all. Regal would kind of sit around for the rest of WCW other than his time in WWF and never really changed.

    Luger has a title match but isn’t here yet so here’s your replacement.

    WCW World Title: Jim Duggan vs. Giant

    Duggan jumps Giant as he comes in and nothing happens. Giant rams into him in the corner but Duggan moves from the third one. Slam of course fails and after a quick bit on the floor the chokeslam ends this quick. Too short to grade but was there any doubt here?

    Various face jobbers come out and get destroyed by Giant. Flair, now a face I guess, comes out with a wooden chair which is broken over Giant’s head which does nothing. Sting comes out and takes out Giant’s leg. Double axe off the top finally puts Giant down and the Scorpion is on for about half a second as Hart saves. Here’s Luger with two minutes left in the show with a briefcase. Hart calls Giant off Luger as it’s time for another conspiracy angle. Sting wants to know what’s up and they argue a lot to end the show.

    Overall Rating: D. Very awkward show here as they were setting up what they could for Slamboree but at the same time they had very little to do due to the Lethal Lottery aspect of the PPV. Not much of a show as far as advancing anything but they had such a long time between PPVs that they didn’t have many other options. Bad show overall but just two more to go.
     
    #23
  24. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #35
    Date: May 13, 1996
    Location: Nashville Municipal Auditorium, Nashville, Tennessee
    Attendance: 5,700
    Commentators: Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan, Steve McMichael

    Giant is world champion now and it’s the go home show before the rather weak Slamboree show. Anyway other than that we’re a mere two weeks away from Hall jumping the railing which is exactly what needed to be done to breathe some life into this promotion. Other than that there isn’t much to this show so let’s get to it.

    Since Luger has missed his last two title shots he camped out in front of the arena to make sure he didn’t miss this one which is kind of funny.

    Steiner Brothers vs. Public Enemy

    Savage is barred from the arena apparently. Rock vs. Scotty to start us off here with Freakzilla taking over rather quickly. The ring is cleared out quickly and there’s the Steiner pose. The referee isn’t paying attention at all when Scott tags in Rick but they’re faces so it’s ok I guess. We’re out on the floor almost immediately after that and it’s a big brawl. Rick gets double teamed as we talk about Slamboree a lot.

    Rock gets crotched on the top rope and backdropped off in a decent move. Back to Scott as this has almost been all Steiner Brothers. Some double teaming lets the PE take over as we hear about Mongo arguing with Flair over something or other. And apparently Mongo can’t talk about it but that would wind up being the awful Great American Bash feature match with football players vs. wrestlers.

    Rock hits a front flip (kind of a Swanton) off the top for two. That more or less ends their chances of winning here though as it was one of their signature moves and Scott kicked out of it with relative ease. An attempt at a second one misses completely as Bischoff suggests that Slamboree is weighing on their minds which is why they’re a step off. Starting 5/27 it’s two hours per show. I’ll still do them two at a time though for the sake of getting through them with any kind of speed. Rock is sent to the floor for a bit and back in the Frankensteiner ends this clean.

    Rating: C. Just a brawl for the most part as no one expected the Steiners to go down here. Public Enemy just didn’t fit in WCW in the slightest. Either way, this didn’t really set up anything for the PPV as only Public Enemy would be teamed together at he PPV while the Steiners would fight each other. Not bad but just kind of there really.

    Dave Taylor vs. Chris Benoit

    This should be ok. Finlay is gone now apparently. After a break before the bell we’re back with technical stuff to start which shouldn’t surprise you at all. Taylor uses his usual hard shots as Bischoff says hi to Hogan because that has to happen right? The problem becomes apparent rather quickly as there’s no point to this match other than two foreigners going at it.

    It’s kind of entertaining but at the same time there isn’t much to it at all. Finlay is out of Lethal Lottery with no replacement announced. HARD WORK Bobby Walker is out and being replaced by some guy named Diamond Dallas Page who now has a benefactor who would never be revealed. Savage is here apparently and Mongo runs off to go talk to him. That would mean something in about a month and a half. Benoit grabs the Dragon Suplex for the quick pin. Another match where for the most part they were too busy to talk about the match itself.

    Rating: C+. Very stiff match which is always fun and it’s hard to complain about a Benoit match. Fun stuff here but at the same time it’s very annoying to have the guys be more or less ignored to push the awful show that was Slamboree. Anyway, pretty decent match here with both guys working hard, only to get no reward for it.

    Gene goes to talk to Savage and Mongo pops up to say he sympathizes with him. Mongo doesn’t want to ignore Flair which would lead to the Bash also. Savage does some more insane ranting and doesn’t mind beating up Flair and winning Lethal Lottery at the same time.

    Glacier is still coming.

    VK Wallstreet vs. Ric Flair

    It’s IRS if you’re not familiar. Kevin Greene is mentioned and yeah we really do have to do Great American Bash in awhile. Blast it. Liz looks great in short black leather dresses. Heel vs. heel here which is always kind of weird. Technical stuff to start us off and Wallstreet is wrestling face for the most part here. Flair heads to the floor to stall and back in gets his leg worked over by Wallstreet as we take a break.

    Back with Wallstreet hammering away which is really surprising. Who in the world is VK Wallstreet that he gets to hammer away on Ric Flair??? Wasn’t Flair world champion the previous week? Powerslam gets two. Sunset flip and backslide both get two and Flair hits the floor. And then VK rams his own knee into the post and you can measure this in seconds now. Figure Four goes on, the girls help, we’re done.

    Rating: C+. This was more competitive than it had any right to be and that’s always a good sign. Flair was still more than able to go at this point and the match showed off as a good result. I don’t get why VK Wallstreet of all people was thrown in there but they were trying I guess. Fun little match and better than expected.

    Flair talks to Gene and rants about Savage for a bit. He’s going to wear a tuxedo and win at Slamboree apparently. Let’s talk about Debra a bit which results in various football analogies and Flair being Joe Namath apparently.

    WCW World Title: Lex Luger vs. The Giant

    And there are no entrances of course here for no apparent reason at all. Giant shoves him around to start and literally bounces off of him a few times. Luger tries to get something going but jumps into Giant who rams him into the buckles a few times. Forearm hits Giant and gets shrugged off as we get a Yokozuna reference. Flair is having a party at a table near the ring with the girls.

    Luger gets some shoulders into the ribs and a running big boot all while Giant is on the apron. He just shakes him though and we hit the floor. They go over to Flair’s party table and Luger is chokeslammed through it, resulting in a double countout instead of a DQ but it doesn’t really matter either way.

    Rating: D+. Just a quick match here with nothing of note going on. Luger had no chance of getting the title here as they weren’t going to change the title match of a PPV six days before the show. This isn’t TNA after all. Anyway weak match as it was more or less all Giant but they had to keep it short to keep things from getting dull which is the right idea for sure with Giant at this point.

    LONG stretcher segment ends the show. Sting is there defending Luger and yells at Gene for trying to get a word.

    Overall Rating: D+. They didn’t really build for Slamboree as the whole thing was about the random matches which meant that there was no point to the show. Giant and Sting is the title match which isn’t really built on either other than a little bit at the end which is why the show absolutely sucked. Well that and DDP retiring the month prior to winning the #1 contender spot the next PPV. Weak show that set up a horrible PPV.

    Here’s Slamboree if you’re interested.

    http://forums.wrestlezone.com/showthread.php?p=2056798#post2056798
     
    #24
  25. klunderbunker

    klunderbunker Welcome to My (And Not Sly's) House

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    Monday Nitro #36
    Date: May 20, 1996
    Location: Monroe Civic Center, Monroe, Louisiana
    Attendance: 4,000
    Commentators: Bobby Heenan, Eric Bischoff

    It’s the night after Slamboree and the final one hour show in the history of Nitro. It’s also the final show in the pre-NWO era. That being said, not a lot has changed at the previous show other than Great American Bash was set up with Mongo bringing out Kevin Greene to help him fight Anderson and Flair which shocked Flair for some reason despite Mongo talking about him on the previous Nitro. The Bash is only four weeks away so at least the build isn’t that long. Anyway let’s get to it.

    We open with a clip of the same thing I just recapped.

    Steiner Brothers vs. Fire and Ice

    Scott Norton and Ice Train so for the sake of this I’ll go with Norton to call Scott Norton and Scott for Scott Steiner. Train and Scott start us off as I continue to try to figure out what I liked about Ice Train. I think these two had a match at the Bash also. Scott hits a belly to belly and it’s off to Norton and Rick. Norton adds a middle rope splash for no cover. Rick is like whatever and hits a German to bring in Scott.

    To the floor and Scott drops a forearm off the top to Norton. Samoan Drop by Norton gets two as momentum shifts a bit. Rick and Train come in and it’s a double clothesline to put both guys down again. Everything breaks down as apparently this is a 90 minute long broadcast. Maybe this is a preview show for the two hour variety? Not that it matters for this match as the referee just throws it out.

    Rating: C-. Not awful here as they did ok for a battle of power. Their match at the PPV had almost twice as long which helped them a bit but at the same time there wasn’t much to go on here. Fire and Ice wasn’t all that good and no one really cared when they split in the fall. Norton went to the NWO and Train went into obscurity. Not much to talk about here but not bad.

    Eddie Guerrero vs. Ric Flair

    This should be good. Eddie grabs a headlock to start and takes Flair down with relative ease. They slug it out a bit as Eddie fires away with right hands and Flair of course chops away. Eddie speeds things up and sends Flair to the floor and Flair wisely gets away from any and all corners. Flair goes to his party table and grabs a chair which is taken away from him by the referee of course.

    After a quick chase around the ring we come back for a staredown. BIG chops in the corner by Eddie and down goes Flair. We take a break with Flair firing a thumb into the eye. Back and they speed things up a bit with Eddie hitting clotheslines and a top rope sunset flip for two. Eddie actually grabs the Figure Four and Flair is in trouble. Eddie is no Jay Lethal apparently though and there’s the rope. Out to the floor and Flair takes over, landing a suplex as I think he wants to damage Guerrero.

    Bobby talks about Flair being a 15 time champion and Bischoff says 13, because we’re not counting THOSE championships because they’re not WRESTLING championships. This guy is a walking comedy show. Flair hammers away but gets caught in an O’Connor Roll for two. Eddie gets a cross body but his knee gives out so he can’t cover. Flair Flip in the corner and Eddie dropkicks him off the apron to the floor.

    Flair takes over on the floor as this has been a really good match so far. Eddie gets pounded in the corner but grabs a tornado DDT. He grabs him by the hand, walks up the ropes, walks across the ropes and gets a rana for two. Slam sets up the Frog Splash but Eddie hurt his leg again.

    Flair…..tries a nip up? What weird parallel universe have I slipped into? Now we go to school and it’s Figure Four time. Eddie blocked it for a bit but now he’s caught. He tries to turn it over but the women help Flair out and Eddie can’t get his shoulders up and he’s out for a pin. That was AWESOME.

    Rating: A-. This might be the best Nitro match in the history of the show and I’ve never heard anyone mention it. It’s Flair vs. Eddie for nearly 20 minutes, making it one of the longest matches in the history of the show so far. Very good match and totally awesome as Eddie gave Flair all he wanted. I loved this.

    Flair and the girls come up to Gene at his VIP table and Savage is mentioned to a big pop. That’s not an issue apparently so Flair talks about football players for awhile and it’s the same stuff he’s said for months now. Flair takes the champagne and leaves with it and the ladies.

    Back from a break and there are candles, champagne and fruit at the announce table with Flair, Bischoff and Heenan.

    Tag Titles: Faces of Fear vs. Sting/Lex Luger

    During the challengers’ entrance Flair is ranting about how we need a waiter. Luger vs. Meng to start us off. Apparently Liz likes Luger’s pec dance. That won’t lead to her eventual death or anything right? Meng actually does a drop toehold as Flair praises him. Bischoff shows his lack of historical wrestling as he asks if Flair has even wrestled a football player, apparently never having heard of Wahoo McDaniel so Flair goes off on him a bit.

    Flair is having a ball on commentary, singing and making jokes about Debra. Back with Barbarian vs. Sting and down goes the painted one. Bischoff shills the replay of the PPV which was absolutely terrible. Barbarian gets a BIG kick of fear for two. That looked great if nothing else. Belly to belly release suplex off the top which looked AWESOME also. Barbarian is looking great here.

    Double top rope headbutt and I think Sting may be dead. Luger comes in for the delay so Sting somehow kicks out at two. Heenan and Flair are cracking me up here as they’re debating which party to go to and having sandwiches. Sting dives for a tag but still can’t reach it either. He finally avoids a top rope headbutt from Barbarian and dives at Luger for the hot tag and everything breaks down. Sting knocks Barbarian off the top and a top rope splash by Sting sets up Luger for the pin.

    Rating: C+. Pretty good little tag match here as Sting sold like a master and it allowed for a decent match to come out of it. Luger’s sneakiness was dropped in favor of other stuff in about a week which is fine because I couldn’t handle another backstabbing angle. Anyway pretty good match here and fine for what it was.

    Flair is told Savage is here and isn’t exactly happy.

    Savage is still trying to get in so Flair laughs a bit. Apparently Savage’s future is being discussed by WCW officials. Savage says make the right decision and is thinking about running through the cops to get at Flair. They shove him back again with ease and that’s about it for this part.

    Glacier is still coming.

    Diamond Dallas Page vs. Brad Armstrong

    Page has his normal music here now minus the Self High Five part. Oh and he’s Diamond Dallas at this point for some reason. He won Battlebowl the previous night and has a benefactor and a ring now apparently. Armstrong tries some basic stuff to start so Page bails into the corner. Considering there’s no way that Armstrong can win here we’re kind of wasting time at this point.

    Nitro moves to two hours next week apparently. Page stomps away and we take a break. Back with Page holding onto a chinlock as I have a feeling this is going to be rather boring here. Backslide gets two for Armstrong and that’s about it at the moment. Page hits a spear in the corner but the second misses and the arm hits the post. Flair praises Armstrong actually as he rams Page into the buckles and then the mat. Top rope cross body by Armstrong gets two and there’s the Diamond Cutter to end this. He didn’t have it mastered yet though so he kind of ran with it at this point. He’d get better though.

    Rating: D+. Pretty weak match here but at the same time Page was still getting better. That’s why they put him with Eddie later to give him some real experience like they did here but Eddie was an actual feud. Anyway, not much of a match here but they had to get him on the show, if nothing else for this next part.

    Gene talks to Page who praises himself for a good while. His foot was on the floor at one point so they’re taking the title shot from him and giving it to Luger. Page keeps the ring though for no adequately explained reason. Page rants a bit and wouldn’t get the title shot for like two years.

    WCW World Title: Arn Anderson vs. The Giant

    I could listen to Anderson’s Horsemen music forever. Kevin Sullivan is with him for some reason. When do you ever see him getting world title shots anyway? Jimmy Hart and Sullivan argue a lot before the match. Anderson tries a go behind to start and Giant is just like dude, no.

    Arn hammers away in the corner and that goes about as well as you would expect it to. Slam puts Arn down and Giant isn’t even sweating. Anderson is sent to the floor and this somehow goes even more slowly. Giant gets crotched on the rope as he comes back in and Anderson manages to take him down. DDT is attempted and Giant is again like dude, no. He lifts him up and the chokeslam ends this clean.

    Rating: D+. I’d go with an N/A here if I used those anymore but that’s really all there is to say here. It ran about 3:40 and had about two minutes of action in it. Giant destroyed him here other than a few shots. The problem was Giant was a guy that was totally awesome in theory but he was green beyond belief. He was slowly getting better but it took a few more years before he could work a match longer than five minutes without someone great in there with him. He was trying though and he actually improved slowly though, which is what made him worth the time.

    Heenan tries to steal all the stuff Flair brought him to end the show.

    Overall Rating: B. This was a pretty good show overall but they didn’t know how to fill in an hour and a half show yet, which is why the NWO was absolutely required when they made the move to two hours the next week. This had a great match and another decent one on there as a lot of stuff started to shift. Anyway, next week is probably the most famous moment in WCW history so this doesn’t mean much in comparison.
     
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