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WCW Saturday Night: September 14, 1996

Just a day removed from Fall Brawl, there remains questions. Why did Sting turn rogue? Has Lex Luger recovered from his broken heart? What of Glacier? And why is WCW Saturday Night Joined In Progress?

ICE TRAIN (with Teddy Long) vs. THE GAMBLER

Yes, there will be no blueprints showing how to Build Your Own WCW Cyborg this week, this match is already underway, as I’m serenaded by DUSTY RHODES and TONY SCHIAVONE. Gambler taps to an armbreaker at 0:22 of what aired. Seriously, you dare clip my Gambler? That’s grounds alone to defect to the WWF, you miserable bastards.


“HARDWORK” BOBBY WALKER vs. CHRIS BENOIT

Walker ain’t been working hard enough, because I don’t think he’s won a match since about May. You could point to the influx of Cruiserweight talent from Mexico, you could point to an inflated roster, but one thing is crystal clear – it’s probably racism. Tony suggests the way to beat Benoit is to keep him on the ground, and I’m not touching that one. Benoit chokes out Walker, and screams “IS THAT ALL YOU GOT? YOU DON’T BELONG HERE!” If he’d thrown in a “boy”, Sonny Onoo is a much richer man today. Benoit starts the knife edge chops, but Walker reacts with rage. To the ground we go, and a chinlock goes nowhere. Walker hits a sunset flip out of nowhere, but that only serves to make Benoit mad, who stomps him into the ground and lectures him once more. Walker escapes a backdrop suplex, and schoolboys Benoit for 2. Small package gets 2. And now it’s time to sell like the 15th round of Creed vs Balboa, and trade shots trying to get the other man to fall. Of course, we’re like 6 minutes in, but I appreciate the effort. Walker misses a blind charge, and Benoit hot shots him. Crossface finishes at 7:36. CHRIS JERICHO hits the ring, and jumps Benoit. What the bloody hell? Apparently they’ve been booked at Fall Brawl, but that doesn’t explain Jericho’s rage about it. Relax guy. **

“MEAN” GENE OKERLUND talks to RANDY SAVAGE about Sting. Savage announces he’s out of his mind, which would effectively make him the last person to find out. He thinks Sting is short sighted considering the nWo won’t even survive past Fall Brawl. Savage promises to destroy the Giant for “a million zillion reasons”. Can he list them? Is there a website we can get the cliff-notes?

GO AWAY HIGH VOLTAGE vs. THE NASTY BOYS

Immediately we go to the split screen which is the universal sign I won’t like this match at all. Kaos winds up in the ring with Knobbs, who is screaming “NASTY” because it makes up the bulk of his wrestling repertoire. Dusty is mid-story about a shotgun, but stops for a second to let out “clubberin’clubberin’clubberin’” and then resumes his story without missing a beat. Knobbs pins Rage with a second rope splash at 2:27. They on the way to the pay windah. 1/2*

The Nastys join “MEAN” GENE OKERLUND in the locker room to talk to the Nastys about their title shot against the Heat tomorrow night. Knobbs issues a warning to Sherri and the Colonel – “IF YOU STICK YOUR NOSE WHERE IT DOESN’T BELONG I’LL KNOCK IT TO THE OTHER SIDE OF YOUR STINKIN’ FACE.” Actually, that doesn’t do it justice, I should have used 72 point font.

Meanwhile, deep inside the Dungeon of Doom, JIMMY HART and MAXX give the secret password, “The War Continues”. KEVIN SULLIVAN, HUGH MORRUS, and THE FACES OF FEAR go and wake up BIG BUBBER from behind his door. Sullivan says amongst the big factions in WCW, both the Horsemen and nWo have World Champions, something they are lacking. However, they have one now. No, not RON THE LEPRECHAUN who is snarling, but KONNAN who is offered a spot in “the gang”. How the hell did Konnan get there? Did he know the secret password? Was he transported through the rocks in a bolt of lightning? Was the water temperature to his liking? Where is the Yeti? Konnan promises once he’s in, it’s blood in, and blood out. Everyone shares an erotic groan of satisfaction to seal the partnership, while Bubba rubs Braun’s head. THIS ALL HAPPENED, and I’ll be damned that I can’t find a YouTube video to make you believe me.

Let’s turn things over to resident Dungeon of Doom expert Dr. Unlikely:

A masterful move by The Taskmaster, putting together all the pieces and seeing the bigger picture. The Horsemen do nothing to respond to losing The Giant, but The Taskmaster immediately recognizes an ally and signs the Hulk Hogan of Mexico to aid his crusade against The Actual Hulk Hogan of Everywhere But Mexico. It's a shame we didn't actually get to see Sullivan recruit Konnan, but we can assume that's where Konan suddenly got the second n and became Konnan, much like Maxx is Maxx and not just Max. The pieces fit, people!

KURASAWA vs. RICK STEINER

Kurasawa points to the giant red sun on the back of his coat, just in case you weren’t sure he was a foreigner and you are supposed to boo him. I love that Kurasawa continues to kick around directionless long after the rest of Sonny Onoo’s failed nJo retreated last winter. Tony tells us if we’re going to order one pay-per-view this year, to make it this one. The problem is, he’s used that line during the last 6 pay-per-views, so if you’d already used your One Pay-Per-View THEN what are you supposed to do? Kurasawa kindly leaps off the top with his vicious move – the big hug, which allows Steiner to launch him with a belly to belly. A scoop slam sends Kurasawa back up, but he’s caught this time and given an overhead belly to belly superplex. Dangerous looking German suplex is on point, and a clothesline finishes at 5:17. Tony says if he had to pick one person to defend WCW right now, he’d pick Rick Steiner. I’d recommend Tony Schiavone not invite himself to any more booking meetings. *1/2

That leads to a talk with “MEAN” GENE OKERLUND. Steiner says he’s 100% behind the WCW boys. Steiner keeps looking up, confusing Gene who does the same. Rick wants the tag-team champions at Halloween Havoc, and barks.

JOE GOMEZ vs. SCOTT NORTON

I feel like we’ve spent more time building up Norton vs. Ice Train over the last month than we’ve spent on even nWo vs. WCW. Would it have killed them to even mention Benoit vs. Jericho prior to tonight? Or were they saving Benoit just in case Sting or Luger turned in favor of the nWo and Team WCW would need a sub. Wait, that DID happen. Gomez taps out to the cross armbreaker at 1:15, which appeared to be on the up and up despite the match being refereed by one NICK PATRICK.

Off to the back where “MEAN” GENE OKERLUND waits. Norton says Train gave up last month, begging for his life. He’ll do the same tomorrow, not just to Train but to Teddy Long too. What the heck did he do?

A segment building up the Horsemen shows highlights of a quality 1996 run, including them working over both Ricky Morton and his unrelated twin Todd Morton.

Footage from Monday’s limousine is re-watched, with subtitles, proving there was another voice inside the car on top of Sting, so we’re looking at at LEAST one more nWo member.

RIC FLAIR, ARN ANDERSON, and LEX LUGER hang out with “MEAN” GENE OKERLUND. Luger is shocked. He started as a Horsemen, and while he has no desire to ever become one again, he’ll be one tomorrow night. He can’t wait to get his hands on Sting, and he won’t like the side of Lex Luger he’s going to see. Arn says he often brings his son to the shows to show off, but he’s leaving his kid at home tomorrow because he might not even come home after it’s over. Flair reminds Hogan they’re not on the set of Thunder In Paradise where Hogan has full creative control (oh boy), and he promises to put him in the hospital. That’s assuming he doesn’t kill him, which he threatens to do repeatedly.

UP CLOSE WITH THE BOOTY MAN: Wait, this is happening? Booty remembers as a kid where Hogan made him cut his hand and become blood brothers 4 life. When his mom had cancer, her last words were “Eddie my Eddie my son”. That was the hardest time of his life, but Hogan was there. He had a restaurant and his wife ran off with one of the waiters. Then he had a freak accident that nearly destroyed his face. In the hospital, Hogan held his hand and told him “don’t give up brother, we love you man”. But now, it’s all over, because it’s all business. Pencil this in as your Starrcade main event. HOGAN vs. BEEFCAKE II – JUST BUSINESS.

RON STUDD vs. LEX LUGER

Before I descend into some tangent topic of how much I’d love to see Ron Studd square off against the Super Giant Ninja, apparently we have a disturbance in the back.

THE GIANT, THE OUTSIDERS, and TED DIBIASE are looking for Luger’s car. Thankfully, a helpful stagehand points them in the right direction, while Nash breaks in to confirming it (Hall: “There’s protein shakes in there, it’s his.”) Giant smashes all the windows, and then nearly slips on the trunk which would have been either the most tragic fall in wrestling history, or funniest.

Luger, of course has no clue, because he’s mid-match with the awkward Studd. Luger can’t slam him because he’s far too big, but somehow he’s able to Rack him at 2:26. My kingdom for a quality match. DUD

THE FOLLOWING ANNOUNCEMENT HAS BEEN PAID FOR BY THE NEW WORLD ORDER

This is filmed from inside of an nWo cage. More demands from the nWo. DiBiase demands Flair’s limo, but asks how nice it is. Hogan: “It’s junk.” DiBiase: “We DON’T want your limo!” Nash starts a take for the Nick Patrick fan club. Hall shakes his head in disgust at WCW blaming their losses on a poor referee. Hall’s demand? McMichael’s dog Pepe. “I’ll squash him like a cock-a-roach.”

DIAMOND DALLAS PAGE vs. “HACKSAW” JIM DUGGAN

NICK PATRICK has been assigned to our main event, interesting considering continued nWo threat DDP is present. However, before we do this…

Here’s a special look at another nWo suspect, GLACIER, who debuted last week. And what do we see? Roughly 3 seconds of him posing. Honestly, the entire Glacier thing feels like the world’s biggest troll move.

We start the match, and Duggan demands Patrick search him for fist tape. He finds a roll, to no surprise. That’s followed by an order of No Clenched Fists in this match. The announcers whine about Patrick here, because he’s preventing Duggan from cheating his ass off as usual. Keep up that line of consistency, WCW. Duggan goes to clock Page, but Patrick rushes in to remind him again, No Clenched Fists. Dealing with Duggan is like dealing with a 3 year old, it takes a lot of repetition. Page gets in his face, so Duggan goes to punch him again, and now for the third time Patrick has to warn him. Just DQ the idiot, he clearly doesn’t get it. Patrick goes to check the time keeper, while Page starts cheating. The fans try to rat him out, but Page plays it cool, shouting “SHUT UP YOU IDIOTS”. Page pulls the hair, which Duggan complains about, so Page roll him up with a handful of tights but only gets 2. Back to the hair, which Patrick misses, so Duggan punches him in the face and gets DQed at 3:31. I actually kind of enjoyed this. *1/2

“MEAN” GENE OKERLUND talks to DDP as we close the show. Page complains that Duggan knocked his tooth out, and wants to welcome Honest Referee, Nick Patrick. Page says he doesn’t bend the rules, and is thrilled that Patrick doesn’t either. Gene accuses Patrick of tightening up the rules. He says he has to, because he’s been accused of being biased, so he’s not letting anything go. He says he warned Duggan repeatedly about the closed fist, and even found a foreign object. Gene brings up the $23,000 custom made Rolex again, because he’s an asshole.


Final sell for the pay-per-view tomorrow, includes shots of last year’s Wargames with main eventers Kamala, Zodiac, Kevin Sullivan, and Shark Man. This year’s edition isn’t quite packing the same star power punch as 1995, but hopefully the in-ring will make up for it.

Comments

  1. CruelConnectionNumber2September 16, 2014 at 6:11 PM

    That Dungeon vignette looks like it takes place in an alleyway with a secret door right? Like somewhere in dirty NYC? Weird, I remember it fondly.

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  2. I have no idea if you made that Booty Man paragraph up. Neither would surprise me.

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  3. Chris, please email me at BBayless781@gmail.com at your convenience. Thanks.

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  4. "(who has shaved his back)"
    This is why you survived the BoD purge. (Also because these recaps are awesome.)

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  5. Yep, then the title is under abeyance for an entire month.... Followed by an inconclusive finish between Taker/Kane at the next PPV, where it remains vacant for another month. Yet nobody lost their minds about it, like last year when something similar happened with the Bryan/Orton trilogy.

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  6. Someone's in trouuuuuuuble.

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  7. Who DID get eaten by the purge?

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  8. DX versus Kaientai in a Raw MAIN EVENT? Weird.

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  9. Adam "Colorado" CurrySeptember 16, 2014 at 7:42 PM

    God I hated this time period.

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  10. The wrestling was awful but the sports entertainment was top-notch. I got of work around 8 or 9 at this time and I would run home to make sure I didn't miss anything.

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  11. Bring your playbook.

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  12. I CAN DO IT COACH

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  13. Loved the review. Good job.

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  14. TV was good then, you had dynamic characters in McMahon, Kane, Taker, and Austin.


    In 2013, you had Bryan... followed by neutered Orton, Triple H, Stephanie, and crying Big Show.

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  15. i love these reviews! question around what time did they stop doing main event angles on saturday night?? ie horsemen promos, nwo looking to destroy lugers car etc.

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  16. You are my favorite.

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  17. It was a face turn. Rock was a face against Mark Henry in October and Rick even jobbed to him. Rock turned heel in November, although Canada gave him a face pop against Mankind even with McMahon. Ricky turning face by March/April 1999 wasn't that far fetched.

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