As we head into another two hours of the nWo show, TheGrailspiral took me to task a little with last week’s review:
I still think these reviews, while entertaining, are too harsh. I would kill to watch this product today
I do my best to give you my very real feelings on what I’m watching week after week. Granted, I’m likely influenced by a lot of what happened later, but that’s bias in a nutshell. But let me be clear: I love WCW. I grew up on WCW. However, if Chris Jericho is being booked like an unbearable wiener (and he is), I’m going to point out how much of an unbearable wiener he is. Now stay tuned as I damn the Faces of Fear with praise until I’m served with a restraining order.
The line on the number of minutes dedicated to Hogan/Piper is set at 81.5. Take the over.
TONY SCHIAVONE welcomes us to the pyro capital of the world, while LARRY ZBYSZKO’s flowered Hawaiian shirt sucks all the fortitude right out of his intestinal region. We are LIVE in St Petersburg, Florida. Tonight, the Women’s tournament continues. Wait – I turn things over to Dr. Unlikely:
The entire company is being invaded by and losing to a hostile force, and the company decides that, what really needs to be done right now is hold a tournament for a new Women's Championship? Like, do they have a to-do list of:
1. Crown new women's champion
2. Hire enough women to compete for new women's championship
4. Save company from nWo invasion
5. Regal: might be dead or stranded in Europe, check messages
Let's note that the tournament for the Women's Championship pops up the week after the nWo begins specifically talking about how they are set-up to gun for every existing title in the company (nWo note: British guy: might be dead or stranded in Europe, check messages), so this appearing now, we'd have to assume, means one of two things: either the new Women's Champion will become an unlikely but fascinating obstacle in the new World order's quest to dominate all of WCW, or they have a plant in the tournament. Gotta be one of those things or why bother, right? Let's see what happens!
I am pleased to announce that Lord Steven has been found alive and well, turning up on the November 2 edition of Saturday Night, so all charges against Ron Studd have been dropped in that particular case. Fit Finlay’s whereabouts remain unknown, and he is presumed dead.
CHRIS BENOIT (with Woman) vs. JEFF JARRETT
You won’t believe this, but apparently Benoit took issue with some of Jarrett’s comments last week. I know, it’s wild to imagine that Jeff, insinuating he’s the leader WCW has sorely been lacking, and accusing the rest of the boys of being spineless jellyfish, that people don’t care for it. Before we start…
KEVIN SULLIVAN and JIMMY HART check in with us. Sullivan tells Benoit that the burning he’s feeling is the same thing he used to feel, but he’s still the man no matter what. Dude, see a doctor, that’s not ok!
Tony reminds us that Benoit and Sullivan “literally” tore the house down in Baltimore at the GAB, and will do it again at an upcoming house show. I don’t think Tony understands what literally means. Benoit wants a test of strength with Jarrett, which Jeff actually wins. Benoit manages to reverse a crossbody hold, but gets hiptossed. Benoit counts with a headscissors takeover, and then chops Jarrett in the MOUTH! OWWW! Jeff responds with a drop toe hold and struts his way right into a commercial break.
Back from break, Benoit and Jarrett are rolling around on the mat throwing punches and pulling hair, and somewhere in the Philadelphia distance a shrill Joey Styles is screaming “CATFIGHT!!!” Jarrett connects with a vertical suplex, and chokes Chris out in the ropes. More strutting draws a ton of heat, which seems odd since he’s WCW’s savior. Benoit chops him like a fine brisket, and they wind up fighting on the mat again. A short armed clothesline from Jeff keeps control, and he starts dropping elbows on the knee to set up the Figure Four. Benoit rolls away, and delivers a hot shot across the top rope. Larry says New World Odor just to remind me that I hate him. Jarrett slips to the apron, and suplexes Benoit over the top and to the floor. As he struts, STING suddenly appears and gives Jarrett a Scorpion Deathdrop to a MONSTER POP, getting a DQ at 6:37. **1/2
Woman wants to know what the hell is going on, as Sting finds someone wearing one of his t-shirts in the front row and gives him a little love. Woman says Jarrett’s clearly WCW, and Benoit should pick him up. Chris isn’t interested, because he hates Jarrett. Woman insists, so Benoit obliges and picks Jarrett up by the hair. The referee is forced to break them up again as we head to break. Great segment.
Meanwhile, A CRAZY PERSON shows up behind the announcers, and drops his package on Tony’s lap before getting dragged away by security. It’s a video tape that the fan wants played from 1992. Because this is wrestling, instead of ignoring this, Tony vows to play it later. For the love of all that is holy, I am begging WCW to reneg on this promise. It’s okay, we DON’T need to see it.
We check in with RIC FLAIR visiting with DR. JAMES ANDREWS. So, Flair’s injury has been pretty unclear at this point, but he hasn’t wrestled since September 16, so it would seem it’s fairly serious. Lo and behold, he tore his rotator cuff, and won’t be able to pitch until shortly after next year’s All-Star break.
MALYA HOSAKA vs. ZERO (with Sonny Onoo) (in the WCW women’s title tournament)
NICK PATRICK draws the assignment here, while Zero draws Super Calo’s music. I’m still not convinced Zero isn’t Kaz Hayashi painted to look like an Oakland Raiders fan. Which makes sense, zero is also the number of wins they’re sporting.
Apparently Zero is the GAIA heavyweight champion of the world. Hosaka is a former NWA women’s champion, but Mike Tenay isn’t here so you and I don’t know this. Hosaka throws a bunch of dropkicks, but Zero goes all Meng and no sells everything. I dare you to try that against Meng, Zero. Hosaka tries a sunset flip, but Zero just sits on her for 2 before pulling her up. The flying jalapeno gets nothing from Hosaka, and Zero just short arm clotheslines her for another 2 and a pull up. Outsiders Edge finishes things at 1:41. Don’t rule out Zero being the nWo plant, as Dr. Unlikely alluded to. 1/2*
“MEAN” GENE OKERLUND interviews DIAMOND DALLAS PAGE. Hold up, pull back a little, Gene!!! I thought he’d simply given up interviewing for a life of franchising burger restaurants, but he’s back in the flesh baybee!
Anyway, Gene asks Page the question nobody else has brought up (and shame on everyone), which is whether or not he’s being recruited by the nWo. Page admits he used to manage Scott Hall, and he used to tag with Kevin Nash, but that doesn’t give them the right to put their nose in his business. THE OUTSIDERS show up, and encourage Page to think about the future. Hall gives him the chance to jump on the black and white express, and he’d be in 4 life. Page reminds them they already have 7 guys, and asks why he’s #8? Nash says they didn’t come earlier for political reasons, because Bischoff lives two houses away. Page takes HUGE offense to that, because he says he’s earned everything he’s received and was given NOTHING. Nash says it wasn’t disrespect, but Page says not being offered #4 or #5, waiting until #8 is a major slap in the face. They leave matters here, for now.
CICLOPE vs. REY MYSTERIO JR.
So a few things here. First, Ciclope enters to “Not Evenflow” which gives me hope that Chris Jericho is about to tear up Dave Penzer’s sports coat but it’s not to be and he’s still a wiener. Secondly – Ciclope!! Third, the ULTIMO DRAGON and SONNY ONOO are sitting at ringside, with about, let me count … 1061 title belts. There’s so much going on here, that Mike Tenay can’t even make an appearance because he passed out somewhere due to the orgasmic overload that’s left him dehydrated. Ciclope is quickly knocked to the floor, and Rey flattens him with tope suicida! Both guys are slow to get up, but Rey manages to roll in Ciclope and scream “FRANKENSTEINER!!!” to the crowd. That probably wasn’t wise, because Ciclope was somehow tipped off to what was coming, and clotheslines the snot out of Rey getting a 2 count. Rey gets sent to the apron, and Ciclope nails him with a sunset flip to the floor with a powerbomb! Great stuff. DEAN MALENKO shows up now because there isn’t enough going on, and he’s making his serious face. Not to be confused with his other faces, such as his serious face. A missile dropkick gets 2. Rey is faceplanted, and finally has enough, opting to roll to the floor. Ciclope palms Mysterio’s head like a basketball, puts him on the top rope, and DDT’s him for 2! PSYCHOSIS now walks to the top of the stage, to watch Malenko watching Dragon watching Onoo watching the title belts. A gutwrench powerbomb from Ciclope gets 2. Man, what’s it gonna take? Rey tries a moonsault, but Ciclope catches him mid move and tombstones Mysterio!! He goes up to finish I’d imagine, but Rey somehow crotches him, and then hits a forward rana OFF THE TOP AND TO THE FLOOR! Oh my frickin’ god! Rey rolls Ciclope back in, and finishes with the West Coast Pop at 5:59!! ***1/2
Malenko spins to head to the back, and stops in his tracks when he sees Psychosis. Mysterio, meanwhile, reminds Malenko all it takes is a single 3 count to change the belts back one more time. Elsewhere, the Dragon poses with about 300 of his belts. I’m guessing if we checked his Ebay account, we’d find he’s spent a lot of time talking to pro-wrestling dealers.
Tony pimps the latest in WCW technological breakthroughs, a website! WCWwrestling.com (or if you’re Tony, WCWwrestlingcom).
THE NWO PROPAGANDA TEAM storms down the entrance ramp and into the crowd, with THE OUTSIDERS and SYXX slowly creepin’ behind. Syxx is holding a Cable Ace award. Hall gets in Larry’s face. “The Living Legend! I thought you’d be bigger. I’ve been watching you since you were a kid.” Hall says the nWo is the reason for the success of Nitro, and encourages the fans to check out THEIR website which goes live tonight. Nash tells Tony he has a nice suit, and asks if he got a cup of soup with it. Tony absolutely cracks, and is forced to cover his mouth like Stefon on Weekend Update. Nash tells both Larry and Tony to sell their houses, and get a nice little double wide because the nWo are taking over Nitro within the next 2-3 weeks.
Hour #2 kicks off, and ERIC BISCHOFF is a little annoyed that Tony and Larry bailed early. MIKE TENAY and “SOBER” BOBBY HEENAN join him.
SCOTT NORTON vs. LEX LUGER
Tenay is quick to note that Norton is currently one half of the NJPW tag-team champions, but my research has concluded that’s a lie so I don’t know what he’s talking about. I can confirm he is currently playing “Darryl” on Storage Wars however, so there’s that. Before we begin however…
ARN ANDERSON says he’s impressed that Luger managed to get mad at Halloween Havoc, but in Baltimore, it’s his ass. That’s a pretty loaded house show they’re pimping, I’m impressed.
Luger is trying a shoulderblock by the time we check in, but it’s like hitting a mack truck with a tennis ball. STING has re-perched himself in the rafters, as Luger clotheslines Norton to the floor. Scott throws a couple of chops, but Luger whips him to the ring post and charges ahead. His clothesline misses, and he nails the metal. They head back in, where Norton’s diving shoulderblock takes us to a commercial.
As we come back, Norton’s still in control, and working over Luger’s injured arm. A blind charge misses, and Luger is quick to give Norton a backdrop suplex. The clotheslines are attempted to no avail (and hurting Luger in the process), but a forearm shot is successful. Still, Norton comes back with a clothesline and heads up(!) His dive misses, and through the pain Luger’s able to apply the Rack for the submission at 6:17. *1/2
“MEAN” GENE OKERLUND wants a quick word with Luger. Lex says he has no answers about Sting’s behavior. As far as Arn is concerned, he says everything’s at stake and he isn’t going to pay him much attention, because the nWo is taking all their belts. He’s been trying to carry the WCW banner alone, and he desperately needs help. He apologizes to Sting, and begs him to come back. And honestly, Luger’s right, it’s been like 2 months, that’s a hell of a long grudge over a misunderstanding.
THE AMAZING FRENCH CANADIANS (with Colonel Robert Parker) vs. HARLEM HEAT (with Sista Sherri)
Everyone completely ignores the fact that Robert Parker has found a new team, because Bischoff’s too busy talking about the fact he might have an update on Roddy Piper lately. Booker, as he’s wont to do, vows to hurt the Colonel. We’re unable to even see the start of this match, because they’re too busy airing replays of the Heat officially severing ties with the Colonel the other day. Once we get back, both Heat members whip Ouellette into Rougeau. Booker nails the axe kick, but nobody cares because …
THE NASTY BOYS are trying to get in the building. Apparently they’re no longer on the approved list of guests, despite this being their place of employment. DOUG DILLINGER is ushered over, and he refuses to let them in to talk business. He double checks on their behalf, but they’re not wanted, and he escorts them outside. However, lurking in the shadows is THE BOOTY MAN, and they chat.
Somewhere in here the match ended in DQ when Sherri got involved at 3:17. Oh.
KONAN vs. CHRIS JERICHO (for the Mexican Heavyweight title)
It’s unusual to see Konan without his second N on Nitro, but rules are made to be broken. Konan still has his vanity belt, so my assumptions to the contrary have been rendered moot. NICK PATRICK is assigned here so it ain’t changing hands anyway. Jericho manages to duck a bunch of Konan’s early stuff, and hits a spinning heel kick as we take a look at Ted Irvine. Heenan: “If he was such a great player why was he traded 35 times?” For the record, “great” is a loose term, he was serviceable. Konan gets dropped on the apron, and Jericho flattens him with another spinning heel kick, this time off the top. On the floor, Jericho attempts a plancha but hits the mat. Konan is right behind with a rolling thunder clothesline. Back in, Konan hits another one, and applies a sitting abdominal stretch. A powerbomb looks to finish, but Jericho still has a little life kicking out at 2. A grapevine armbar is locked on, but Jericho won’t tap. Konan dropkicks Jericho in the corner, but Jericho ducks a follow up clothesline and nails a release German suplex. A spin kick drops Konan, and hits a back elbow. Konan tries for a German, but Jericho rolls forward for 2. Jericho ducks a leapfrog, and nearly hits Nick Patrick who’s right in the way of traffic. Konan dropkicks him into Patrick, and that draws a DQ at 5:21. They rush to commercial before we get Jericho’s reaction. **
JUVENTUD GUERRERA vs. MIGUEL PEREZ JR.
Both guys are already in the ring. Bischoff reports during the break that Jericho was “all over” Nick Patrick. Miguel has more body hair than Prince Albert. Seriously, he looks like a rug. Even Heenan gets in on it, referring to him as the “guy with the fur shirt”. Juvi nails a missile dropkick, but Miguel comes right back with the side Russian legsweep. A slam sets up a senton backsplash, followed by a quick standing moonsault for 2. He gets too cute though, heading to the apron, and Juvi dropkicks Miguel to the floor. Off the top, a plancha is on point, and both guys are hurt. Juvi recovers first, and goes for a rana off the guardrail, but Miguel powerbombs him right onto the floor! Miguel rushes back in, and hits the Space Flying Tiger Drop to perfection! Miguel goes to finish with a tornado DDT, but Juvi rolls through and hits a springboard dropkick. The Firebird splash misses, and Miguel quickly rolls him up for the pin at 3:56. The match was fantastic, but bothering me more than mountain of body hair is the fact that Miguel is ALSO gifted Super Calo’s music! They’re whoring that thing around more than Sunny in the mid-90’s! ***
In the nWo section of the building, TED DIBIASE is with VINCENT, and trying to call out for Sting. He says that he knows Sting has a lot on his mind, but since he’s already wearing the nWo colors, they have a t-shirt waiting for him.
THE FACES OF FEAR (with Jimmy Hart) vs. THE AMERICAN MALES
This is your main event, and besides the fact that the Fear are getting the Pay Windah spot, I’m right on pins and needles of excitement at the prospect of seeing the Males get eaten alive. Sure enough, before the bell, Riggs is torn apart by both guys. Bagwell helps his buddy hit double dropkicks. Barbarian responds by calmly shrugging Riggs to the floor with a backdrop. Meng misses a springboard crossbody on Bagwell, but he doesn’t feel pain so it’s cool. Bagwell tries to cut off the ring, and Meng just walks right past him to tag in Barbarian. Then he holds Bagwell hostage anyway, allowing Barbarian to powerbomb him to hell. A backbreaker is delivered with extra cheese, and we’re back to Meng. He chokes Bagwell out, while shaking his head like a madman. A double clothesline has Bagwell begging for his life, and in desperation he clotheslines Barbarian. By the time he turns aroung, Meng’s already there with a much harder clothesline that damn near takes his head off. Riggs has seen enough and hits Meng, which might be the last thing he ever does. He manages a trio of dropkicks on both guys, and nails Barbarian with the flying jalapeno for 1. Riggs goes for another dropkick on Barbarian, but it’s at the same time as Bagwell tripping Barbarian up so Riggs actually winds up falling backwards and hurting himself. That gives Meng time to hit the Kick of Fear, and Barbarian gets the easy win at 3:34. **1/2
Hart grabs the mic, and demands to know how the hell the Nastys have a title shot at World War 3 if the Nastys aren’t even WCW members. Hart demands the Faces of Fear get the love they deserve, and give WCW a chance to get the titles back. Amen brother!!
So, earlier tonight, someone dropped their package on Tony Schiavone, and now Bischoff feels it’s so bloody important it MUST be aired right now. It’s from 1992 in Europe, where it was a hit.
For all the shit Vince McMahon’s eaten over the years about “Stand Back”, this is far worse. This is Ashlee Simpson on SNL. This is Eddie Murphy teaming up with Michael Jackson. There is no coming back from this. You can wash your mind with sulfuric acid, but it won’t go away. When your life finally winds down (hopefully not for a long time, I love you all), and you’re slowly walking into the light, this will start playing and you’ll make haste in a mad sprint. And you’re probably asking yourself what the hell is the point of this, aside from making Piper look like an embarrassment? Well, at one point there’s a sign that reads “The Ultimate Bowl – Roddy Piper vs. Hulk Hogan”. So, they’re trying to tie this into some idea that Piper’s been craving a match with Hogan since at least 1992. No. I can’t do it. It’s time to change direction immediately, and go with in a much less embarrassing direction. In fact, we started building a major rematch from Hogan’s past in September. You know what I’m talking about. Hogan vs. Beefcake II: I’m Booty Hurt!
In response, HOLLYWOOD HOGAN, VINCENT, TED DIBIASE, THE GIANT, and MISS ELIZABETH dressed in a sexy Mrs. Claus outfit, saunter to the ring. Just to be clear, it’s only Liz dressed in the outfit. NICK PATRICK stands with them for some reason. For the third week in a row, Hogan demands the lights be lowered and a spotlight hit them. Hogan claims that Santa with Muscles is wiping out everyone at the box office, and they’re going to be #1 for 8-12 weeks in a row. Hogan reminds us we haven’t heard boo from Piper in weeks, so it’s pretty clear he wants no part of Hollywood. We close once again with the posing, but thankfully no butt movement.
Will we ever again hear from Piper? Or will he hide in the outskirts of Portland for the rest of his life after having that music video aired? I know which option I’d choose. See you Saturday.