Tuesday, March 10, 2015

The SmarK Rant for WCW Monday Nitro–04.29.96

The SmarK Rant for WCW Monday Nitro – 04.29.96

Taped from whatever last week was. What is this, the World Whining Federation? I thought that the “C” in “WCW” stood for COMMITMENT, Eric.

Your hosts are Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan & Mongo

World tag team titles: Lex Luger & Sting v. Harlem Heat

Bischoff notes that the winner of Battlebowl at Slamboree gets a title match at the Great American Bash, and THAT sure didn’t happen. So many lies tonight. Booker and Sting trade wristlocks until Booker sidekicks him, but Sting drops an elbow for two. Luger with an elbow for two. Stevie Ray comes in and beats him down in the corner, but Lex returns the favor and the champs double-team Stevie for two. The announcers talk about how Sting can’t trust Luger, but oddly the entire direction of the company changed before that storyline could be brought to the logical conclusion, and Luger just kind of transitioned into full babyface for good. We take a break and return with Booker putting Sting down with a spinkick for two. Stevie with a bicycle kick for two. The Heat get the heat on Sting, but it’s hot tag Luger and he’s throwing clotheslines all over the place. Powerslam on Booker and it’s BONZO GONZO, as the Heat hit a double-team powerbomb on Luger and now Jimmy Hart runs interference, allowing Sting to roll up Booker for the (unintentional) cheap win at 8:38. So the skullduggery from Luger continues. **

Fire & Ice v. The Steiner Brothers

Apparently everyone is talking about Fire & Ice! After Ice Train got off the steroids he suddenly dropped to like 120 pounds. He was just the WORST. Rick throws Juice Train around and Scott follows with suplexes on Norton, which is pretty damn impressive because he’s a big guy and generally doesn’t sell stuff like that. Fire & Ice briefly get the heat on Rick, but he comes back with a Steinerline on Ice Train out of nowhere for a quick pin at 3:25. What a mess. *

Ric Flair lets us know that Randy Savage is SMALL next to the Nature Boy, and he’s not worried about the Giant.

GLACIER is coming. Well, not for many months after this. But eventually. I mean, glaciers are slow moving and all.

Parking Lot Brawl: Lord Steven Regal v. The Belfast Bruiser

So yeah, Finlay punches through a windshield and grabs a piece of concrete, but Regal goes to the eyes and Finlay throws some serious punches in response. And then he drops a tire on Regal, rims and all. OUCH. The old bumper to the back and a slam on the hood follows, but Regal throws some vicious high kicks to fight back until Finlay chokes him down with a seat belt. Regal tries to put him a windshield without success, so Finlay drops him on the safety railing face first. They fight on the roof of a pickup and take a crazy bump to the concrete, and another poor window dies for this match. Thankfully they gimmicked the windows of that car. They fight on the roof of another car as Bischoff gets the director to pull out wider and wider, and Regal piledrives him on the roof and pins him on the hood to win it at 7:00. A crazy brawl, predating the WWF Hardcore division by a long time. ***1/2

WCW World title: Ric Flair v. The Giant

Flair tries to attack and gets press-slammed and tossed out of the ring, but Giant misses a blind charge and Flair goes up. And that of course never works. Giant goes for the chokeslam, but Flair hits him in the Big Shows and takes over. Flair also finds an international object in his tights and puts Giant down with that, and now we go to school with the figure-four. Giant appears to be out, but then suddenly wakes up, chokeslams Flair right from the figure-four, and wins the title at 5:49. Pretty bad. *

The Pulse

Due to the timeslot changes with playoffs, this show scored one of the lowest ratings in the history of the show. They would of course rebound from that, but in fact TNT executives freaked out and expanded the show to two hours as a result, a move that would change everything. So there you go.

41 comments:

  1. So...the solution to RAW's current falling ratings is to expand to four hours?

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  2. oooh, more replays of whatever Cena, Trips and Stephers do that night

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  3. Okay, so I know that Jericho beat Austin/Rock in the same night, but...

    Yokozuna destroyed Bob Backlund, Randy Savage, Bret Hart, and Hulk Hogan in order.

    That's Murderer's Row, in my opinion.

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  4. Is it just you and I? Haven't heard much from EddieChicago or kbjone or anyone else really.

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  5. It'd probably creep people out if I railed off 100 unanswered messages, so thanks for the heads up. haha

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  6. Crikey Mate Down Under AussieMarch 11, 2015 at 1:21 AM

    Royal Rumble 2004 :P

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  7. Vs. Sheamus at a Hell in the Cell 2012 PPV was a legit 4 star match

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  8. But that would compete with the WWE Network pre-show. And competition is good!

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  9. Royal Rumble 2004.

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  10. Show more than held his own in that match. He made Benoit look like a ferocious honey badger.

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  11. Yep.

    They did "Whatta Man" as the pre-intro for Lawrence Taylor at WM11

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  12. So they didnt depush the giant after 1 rating loss. No wonder this company went out of business.

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  13. The Big Show is one of those guys who fans (online and otherwise) say is a shitty worker, but actual wrestlers say is a GOOD one. One of those things you kind of have to be a wrestler to know about, I guess- he draws good reactions from the crowds, is safe to work with (I've never heard of him hurting anybody), can still sell like nuts when he needs to, and has a few big moves to base a match around.

    But yeah- his matches usually suck donkey-balls from a fan's standpoint. Just lots of plodding around, he blows up easily, and only a couple moves.

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  14. The Giant Title win is always an interesting thing to me, as he was still a rookie, and had just come out of the Hogan feud. BUT, this even seemed to have legitimized him in a way that countless squashes couldn't, as he wins the WORLD TITLE from a legend in Ric Flair, and easily at that. Sure, they'd leave him in bullshit feuds and de-push the fuck out of him in the nWo era, but he always had "World Champion" on his resume after this.

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  15. As a kid, I watched tons of wrestling... You come home from church and there'd be AWA All-Star Wrestling... Later, we'd get WTBS...and they had Georgia Championship Wrestling. And then the WWF got big. (Occasionally, I'd chance upon some WCCW stuff on some channel that I'd never remember what it was...)

    ...but, I never watched any PPVs. Never ordered 'em...none of my friends did either.

    Wrestling stopped being a thing that my friends did...so I lost interest. Years later, when I went back for a high school reunion, I saw a bunch of guys in a bar wearing Goldberg t-shirts...and I had no idea what Goldberg was. Looked it up...bought a WCW Thunder video game for the PS1. Started watching both Nitro & Raw for awhile. Liked WWF better. Liked WWF video games MUCH better...WM2000 and No Mercy were awesome, made a ton of original CAWs...and then found efedding.

    The first PPV I ever saw was in person...at Safeco Field for WM19.

    Watched for awhile but lost interest in efedding and started to watch less and less.

    Got back into wrestling thanks to Botchamania and OSW Review. (Knowing that a bunch of my stand-up comedy friends were into wrestling didn't hurt.) Ended up really entertained by NXT and, rather than getting Hulu Plus, I ended up subscribing to the Network pretty early on...

    And the first PPV I ever fully watched on television was WM31.

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  16. That actually makes sense. Wrestlers say the same thing about Kane.


    That said, I'd rather take a nap or watch Hogan work than endure a plodding match where they're on the offense. They've been using the same five moves of gloom for the past two decades.

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  17. Battle Kat LitterMarch 11, 2015 at 4:38 AM

    Make it 5 hours just to be sure, including a 45 minute "at home with The Authority" segment and Bad News Barrett wrestling (and losing clean) 3 times

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  18. Work rate isn't everything. The giant had some great **** matches with Hogan. He had a great match with Savage - except for that one at Fall Brawl 96. Heck I hated him jobbing, but that Austin match was pretty good.

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  19. That one random Taker match on PPV.

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  20. Seriously unless Hogan comes back - WCW is going to be boring. Sure Flair vs. Savage will be okay. And we'll have great matches like Wade Bloom vs. Mike Enos to look forward too - but seriously we need more Hogan no selling.

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  21. Nitro got bad when it went to three overs - although the company was almost dead in the water - dropping back to two hours was a good idea.

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  22. I think Luger made the real face turn maybe when he took the table bump - and that was a week before Scott Hall debuted. I'll admit when Hall showed up, I thought he was Diamond Studd at first - but that was only because a diet sheet said Diamond Studd and Vinnie Vegas were returning. But the whole we are taking over changed all that. This was mind blowing in 1996 - but it jumped the shark by November 1996.

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  23. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!March 11, 2015 at 6:23 AM

    Wade Bloom, as everyone knows, is Wayne Bloom's black step-brother.

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  24. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!March 11, 2015 at 6:26 AM

    Before he ballooned in weight in the mid 00's, Show could move. When he first started out, he could even get to the top rope. He was actually athletic as shit until he started looking like a whale with frying pan hands.

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  25. Was about to post this, best Show match ever.

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  26. Theberzerker, #1 HUSS CHOMPIONMarch 11, 2015 at 7:02 AM

    So, why did they give the title to the Giant here anyway?

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  27. According to Ric he missed a flight and this was a punishment, but this is during his "everything they do is unfair to Flair" phase so who knows? I always just assumed it was because they liked to bounce the title around for ratings at this point.

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  28. I knew Nash and Hall were leaving but with the way Hall debuted I actually thought he'd re-signed and they decided to fuck with WCW.

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  29. Back when this aired, I LOLed at the end of the Parking Lot Brawl when Bobby Heenan 'realized' that one of the cars they destroyed was his rental car.

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  30. Molly Holly is a whore

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  31. The Regal/Finlay match is on one of the Best of Nitro DVDs, no? I recall Bischoff freaking out on commentary

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  32. Those two matches between Finlay\Regal almost have me convinced that they hate each other. That's good work, right there.

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  33. DDP never got a title shot because he pulled an Austin - Rumble 97 move, where he re-entered after he was eliminated. Now, the biggest injustice was that the guy who finished 2nd, Barbarian, never got HIS title shot.

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  34. According to Regal, the cars were not gimmicked, which makes me wince even more when I watch this now.

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  35. AverageJoeEverymanMarch 11, 2015 at 10:20 AM

    and never actually talking about any "BAAD NYEEWS" for people, you know, like how he got over.

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  36. Excellent question, Shelton. Dave was equally mystified about it in the Observers at the time, given that Flair and Savage were apparently drawing gangbusters at house shows with the title on the line and Giant didn't need it.

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  37. Better question: why did they put a World Title change in a 6 minute match on a one-hour Nitro, in the era before the Monday Night Wars really got hot no less?

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  38. I know that. I don't care. I just need something. This just makes me feel good. Even if they win six games for the next two years, I'll be happy having Revis back.

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