Friday, November 28, 2014

WCW Worldwide: November 24, 1996

With just hours before the end of world peace is broadcast on pay-per-view, it remains incredible WCW is able to maintain any kind of order. Yet, here we are, with a star studded lineup. What if I told you Hollywood Hogan defends his World Title against Sting, while Roddy Piper guest referees? For starters, that would make me a colossal liar. But we have a fair number of substitutes, such as Brad Armstrong, Rick Steiner, and the Public Enemy.

Our hosts are TONY SCHIAVONE and “SOBER” BOBBY HEENAN, live from Disney MGM Grand studios in Florida, in front of a capacity crowd of 8 excited young girls who mistook this for a Princess tea-party.


THE ARMSTRONG BROTHERS vs. THE PUBLIC ENEMY

Heenan on the Armstrongs: “Put your arms down, the wind’s blowing.” Heenan on the Public Enemy: “Hang on, I gotta hide my wallet. Are those old Houston Astros uniforms?” Heenan’s all kinds of salty tonight, moaning about the length of the Enemy’s entrance because he’s got other things to get done today. This should be relatively quick, depending how hard we’re pushing TPE this month. Steve accidentally clotheslines his brother, but recovers to give Rocco a hotshot. An atomic drop stuns Rock, and Scott comes off the top with a clothesline so gentle I’m not sure it would move a dryer sheet. Somehow, Rock sells it, and then takes a bulldog. Scott points to his arms, because he’s Arm Strong, before he unsuccessfully attempts a sunset flip. The announcers talk World War 3, and Heenan explains if he and Tony were tag-team partners, he’d be forced to fight him. Tony’s fine with that, informing Heenan he’d be the first guy he’d go after. Heenan is in complete shock, “after all I’ve done for you! I’ve carried this team!” Tony tries to give it back, while Heenan explains the ideal strategy to eliminate Schiavone would be to put a bowl of Coco Pebbles on the apron, and as he reaches for them, dump him over the top. A bored Bobby Heenan is the best Bobby Heenan, and we’re getting 5 star work from him here. The Armstrongs cut off the ring and do all sorts of mock hands in the air. After far too long on offense, Rock is finally able to tag Grunge, who starts slamming losers left and right. Drive By goes to finish, but Steve Armstrong makes the save. There is no reason to delay this! Miscommunication from the brothers leads to a Grunge schoolboy, and it FINALLY ends at 7:39. *

JIM POWERS (with Teddy Long) vs. MARK STARR

Starr has traded in his hard hat for tassels, which might violate his collective agreement. Long orders referee PEE WEE ANDERSON not to pull any of that “Nick Patrick crap”. I’m starting to think the problem is Teddy Long’s over aggressive approach with paid officials, as opposed to Nick Patrick. Juiced Jim hits a shoulderblock, and follows with a hiptoss. Starr chases him around like Wile E Coyote, failing at every turn despite having some fine ideas. Powers delivers a pooter punch, and follows with the high knee. Powerslam gets the win at 3:48. Nope. 1/2*

GOLDBERG PAT TANAKA vs. GLACIER

For god sakes, Glacier’s had like 2 fights since his debut, and we’re already running through return matches? I really don’t like that the company that employs Glacier has been under constant terroristic attacks since his debut, and despite his background as both a police officer, AND years of training as a martial arts guru – which the last time I checked encourages peace and honor – hasn’t done a DAMN THING to help WCW! As is the norm, Glacier gets to wrestle under a blue light. If that’s the case, Val Venis should be allowed to wrestle under a black light. Glacier runs through his stupid martial arts routine, before crossing his arms, and just stopping short of yelling “FINISH HIM!” That gives Tanaka enough time to hit a powerbomb, but Glacier shows a new kip up, by sliding his split legs shut, and moving back to a vertical base. Bruno Mars should use that one. Glacier hits the Cryonic Kick off the top and scores the pin at 2:21. 1/2* Heenan: “He has an eye like a Siamese cat!”

JERRY LYNN vs. BRAD ARMSTRONG

This is actually happening, isn’t it? Even worse, it’s being sold to us as a “great Cruiserweight match up!” Tony decided at some point that having any credibility is worse than having no credibility, and he’s worked very hard to rectify that. Side Russian legsweep wins at 2:24. *

RICK STEINER vs. LEX LUGER

NICK PATRICK is assigned here, and this might be his first match all week. I’ll give Luger credit for swallowing his pride on his last contract, because there is no way anyone else in his position would be willing to appear on all of these syndicated shows, but he’s here at least once a month or more. For all the shit he ate in the dying days of WCW, Luger was nothing short of a pro throughout 1995-97. Tony starts in on the fact Patrick isn’t wearing his neck brace, because he isn’t hurt. Heenan asks how he knows, because after all, “you thought Hogan was a good guy!” Tony: “… yes I did.” Luger manages a backdrop on Steiner, but he jumps back up and spears Lex. Luger flattens him with an elbow, but Steiner shakes it off and hits a clothesline for 2. Luger fires back with a powerslam, but Steiner kicks out. A vertical suplex fails to secure the win, and Luger’s a little frustrated. He goes for the roaring clothesline, but Steiner continues to kick out. They start trading blows, which Luger seems to win, but Heenan figures Steiner’s always in a daze so it means nothing. And sure enough, Steiner manages a powerslam, and then hits the top rope bulldog! He decides not to cover, which is a mistake, and they both tumble to the floor off a clothesline. Nick Patrick notices it’s over the top rope, which is a double DQ at 6:45. Tony tries to argue that it was dual momentum, or some such nonsense – but I’m on Patrick’s side if for no other reason than to abolish the stupid over the top rope rule! This was sadly the match of the night. *1/2


No preview for next week. And no hard-sell for World War 3 at the credits? They managed that clock like Mike Smith in a do or die situation. Not good, WCW.

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