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Your favourite opening segments


Murtz

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Most talking points on shows happen at the end and sometimes in the middle, but there have been some quality segments that open a show.

 

Name some of your favourite show openers. I'll get the ball rolling with this.

 

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The Cactus vs Chainsaw Charlie match with the Outlaws pushing them off the ramp was drama to the ridiculous levels back in 1998. They pulled the old "that wasnt meant to happen" thing as well.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X1AWGZe0xTw...;feature=fvwrel

 

1998 was filled with them. The opener was the keep you hooked, so you didn't change the channel.

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The Cactus vs Chainsaw Charlie match with the Outlaws pushing them off the ramp was drama to the ridiculous levels back in 1998. They pulled the old "that wasnt meant to happen" thing as well.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X1AWGZe0xTw...;feature=fvwrel

 

1998 was filled with them. The opener was the keep you hooked, so you didn't change the channel.

 

I always love how batshit mental Flash Funk goes for the Outlaws. They really did throw away most heel/face guises there for that Tag Title angle. The NWA Stable, Sunny (who does a superb job throughout as does Scorpio), Savio and Marvelous Marc all get in on the act. For something that dropped so much kayfabe, it seems so forgotten about to some extent.

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That segment was notoriously rotten. Everyone looked like a complete spanner. Raw's opening segments are usually crap these days. The show usually builds to a finish now. Whether its the Nexus angle, the CM Punk interview thing or this last Monday, if something big happens, they usually leave it until the overrun.

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What a great idea for a thread.

 

Chris Benoit VS Jeff Jarrett, 11th November 1996 Monday Nitro

Watch the match if you life (it's only seven minutes) or skip to here to see an integral turning point in one of my favourite character arcs of all time.

 

Vince introduces the new WWF Champion, 30th March 1998

OK, we all knew what to expect out of Stone Cold by now, but the execution is fantastic. I also love the way Vince comes out with new belt over his shoulder, pretending he's Champion just like all of us would.

 

New Age Outlaws VS Al Snow & Steve Blackman, 31st January 2000 Raw

Some mates of the challengers happen to be ringside for this all-important tag team title collision. If memory serves me correct, they get involved.

 

You probably already know what happens here. Michaels proudly declares "I screwed Bret" in the very building in which he did so.

 

Fuck it, sentimental value only. Hitman was my hero.

 

 

There's plenty more, that's all I got for now.

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Just been watching Raw's from 1997 today and they are loaded with superb opening segments. I was just watching one from the 28/4/97 Raw where Brian Pillman cuts a promo leading the crowd in prayer for Bret Hart. Pillman was wonderful, even if that Benoit book made him out to be a proper cunt.

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Jericho beats HHH

 

 

Raw started with HHH in the ring talking the usual bollocks. Jericho challenges him for the title, but HHH laughs it off until Jericho finally goads him into putting the belt on the line. Unfortunately for young Christopher, the decision is reversed afterwards.

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There was a thread recently about the best tv episodes of wrestling, I never got round to posting in it but the episode I was going to mention was a Raw from April (I think) 1998, The Battle for Mick Foleys Soul which I adore and has a blistering opening. I posted it in the great wrestling promo transcripts some time back and maybe I'll link it here when I'm not on my phone.

 

Its in the midst of Austin vs McMahon and Vince is currently using and manipulating Mick into doing his bidding for him and getting the WWF title off Stone Cold. Mick had recently returned as Dude Love, but here he comes out decrying the Dude Love persona and wanting to eliminate any memory or existence of it. He's angry and confused, wanting the WWF title and having been devoting himself to Vince and his wishes, yet Goldust has been rewarded with the next title shot, despite being a cross-dressing freak and Mick is put into a falls count anywhere match with his best mate Terry Funk. He's not there at the best of times but here he refers to himself as Mick Foley and Cactus Jack and he wants answers from Vince. Vince comes out and makes already a great promo even better with his speech. Putting Mick back on track and giving him some motivation. Deep down the fans want to love Mick, Vince is the devil on one shoulder, Austin the angel on the other. Vince pulling him toward the dark side for his own benefit, for his own desires to be realised. Austin wants to show Foley this and that Vince is leading him astray but, Austin being Austin (a bit of a sociopath really) makes it clear that if you're with Vince and choosing that path, you're damn sure against him. It's clear Austin likes Foley but he only really knows how to show it with tough love and generally expresses himself through violence. So, here Austin has heard enough as Vince is reeling Mick back in. The glass shatters Austin arrives and proceeds to completely tear apart the Love Shack set. Making his message clear and also further symbolising the burying of The Dude Love persona and thus showing Mick what way he needs to go.

 

It was a fantastic start to the show and a great set up for the main event and show ending angle. Totally engrossing and a tremendous development to the whole angle and also a great pre-cursor to the eventual pay-off, months down the line in that brilliant, brilliant moment well, moments, in the closing stages of the Survivor Series Deadly Game semi-final between Mankind and Austin.

 

I adore that match, those moments, the evolution of Mick Foley in WWF is one of my favourite ever things in wrestling and this is an integral part of it. A great story episode and everyone involved plays their roles with aplomb. God, I love it.

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