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mikehoncho

The "I've just watched ..." thread

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I have zero recollection of ever having seen most of this show, but I've definitely seen Maxx Payne play the national anthem, and I must have seen White Castle Of Fear. So either I've unfairly blocked this out of my memory, or Payne did that gimmick twice.

Cactus vs. Orndorff is absolutely something I'm going to have to check out - late career Paul Orndorff has been a low-key highlight of WCW rewatches for me. He's so great at stalling and stooging in Pretty Wonderful, once you get to that point, and the way he moves around the ring to transition from one spot to another is as smooth as anyone I've ever seen, if you're looking for that kind of thing.

Checking his cagematch because I couldn't remember what Pretty Wonderful were actually called, and discovered that he had a match at Fall Brawl 2000?! How on earth did that come about?

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1 hour ago, BomberPat said:

Cactus vs. Orndorff is absolutely something I'm going to have to check out - late career Paul Orndorff has been a low-key highlight of WCW rewatches for me. He's so great at stalling and stooging in Pretty Wonderful, once you get to that point, and the way he moves around the ring to transition from one spot to another is as smooth as anyone I've ever seen, if you're looking for that kind of thing.

It’s really good. I think you’ll like it. I don’t know what I was expecting but Cactus Jack and Paul Orndorff isn’t really a combination that you’d necessarily expect to work but it did, brilliantly. And it was a nice change of pace seeing Orndorff in that kind of match. 

Orndorff is someone I really didn’t appreciate fully until years after he retired but every time I’ve seen anything of his 93-95 WCW run he’s nearly always been a highlight of any show he’s on. I only remember Pretty Wonderful vaguely but him and Roma were an ideal fit really. Much better than Roma as a Horseman anyway. 

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Currently laughing stupidly at Ernest Miller constantly referring to Lance Storm and his gang of Canadians in 2000 WCW as a bunch of "dumbass stupid Canniddyans".

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18 hours ago, BomberPat said:

I have zero recollection of ever having seen most of this show, but I've definitely seen Maxx Payne play the national anthem, and I must have seen White Castle Of Fear. So either I've unfairly blocked this out of my memory, or Payne did that gimmick twice.

 

He opened at least one WWF show, I think an In Your House by playing the national anthem when he was Man Mountain Rock with the WWF logo guitair.

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In preparation for my Network sub ending on June 1st, I've switched to watching random shit on YouTube. Fancied some WCW Jericho last night and saw this that I've not seen before as I think it was on Thunder. Eddie dropping Jericho on his fucking head. Tenay calls it "a version of the Gory special". What a pro.

 

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Fuck! Never seen that before. Jericho had a few scares in his WCW days. This one with Gedo at Halloween Havoc 97 could’ve easily been another Droz situation; 

Actually, it’s the tights isn’t it? They must be his unlucky tights or something. 

Edited by wandshogun09

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Those Sting vs Vader bouts are an absolute joy. You can totally see why Flair maintained that Sting with the Stamford machine behind him would've taken over the world. One of my favourite things about the feud was the fact that they paired Sting with Vader to "stiffen him up", basically make him better at the main event brawls that were their bread and butter gate. Can you imagine anything like that happening today?

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34 minutes ago, CavemanLynn said:

Those Sting vs Vader bouts are an absolute joy. You can totally see why Flair maintained that Sting with the Stamford machine behind him would've taken over the world. One of my favourite things about the feud was the fact that they paired Sting with Vader to "stiffen him up", basically make him better at the main event brawls that were their bread and butter gate. Can you imagine anything like that happening today?

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Onto the next one. We’re back at The Omni in Atlanta for Slamboree. Billed as ‘A Legends’ Reunion’, and it’s going to be a weird mish-mash of past, present and future. 

Here’s Dusty telling you why you should watch it;

Slamboree

May 23rd 1993 

Atlanta, Georgia 

The show opens and the ring is choc-full of legends and old names. Dory Funk Jr, Verne Gagne, Nick Bockwinkel, Don Owens, Lou Thesz, of course Dusty’s there. Quite the squad. 

Wait a minute, what’s this? 

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Where’s Jesse? I don’t mind Larry Zbyszko but I could never get on with his commentating and he really isn’t going to cut it as a replacement for The Body. ”Time fears only the pyramids and the legends of professional wrestling!” OK then.

WHERE’S JESSE?! 

Oh, Tony says he’s in the hospital recuperating. Doesn’t say why. 

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He’s at it again @BomberPat, Maxx bastard Payne and his guitar. Like a cross between Wayne’s World and Wayne Slob off Harry Enfield. I didn’t know this was a regular thing. Why was this a regular thing? 

From there some nobodies and jobbers carry out a big throne which is concealed so you can’t see who’s sitting in it. And out steps the old battle-axe...

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Even in 1993, she looks about 106. I guess pimpin’ really ain’t easy. Schiavone says she’s ‘The Queen Of Slamboree’. Whatever that means. The sight of all these old timers standing around while Maxx fucking Payne is headbanging away on his guitar is such an odd combination. WCW were never right really, were they? 

We were meant to get Sting vs Scott Norton on this show (more on that later) but it’s off now. While all this waffle is going on the sodding lights go out. Bischoff and Missy buy some time while Schiavone quickly runs out to put a tenner on the meter and we get the lights back on. 

Now we can proceed. 

2 Cold Scorpio & Marcus Alexander Bagwell vs Beautiful Bobby Eaton & Chris Benoit 

This was decent. Only goes around 10 minutes and it’s pretty much exactly what you want for a PPV opener. Doesn’t outstay its welcome and the action is good from bell to bell. I remember the Scorpio and Bagwell team. They worked surprisingly well as a team but for some reason one of the main memories I have of them is when Jesse used to take the piss out of their matching pink and white tights. Used to remind me of these...

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Can it get any less intimidating than stepping into the ring looking like a big pair of marshmallows? Yes. It can. Bagwell is trying to dance like Scorpio. 

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Anyway, yeah, it’s a solid little match. I completely forgot that Eaton and Benoit were a makeshift tag team around this time. Bit of an odd pairing but obviously both were brilliant in the ring. This doesn’t come close to the Scorpio vs Benoit singles match at Superbrawl but it’s enjoyable for what it is. 2 Cold and Bagwell come out on top when Scorpio nearly kills Benoit with this...move I can’t name...

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Christ! He obviously gets the 3 count and Benoit had to be scraped up with a dustpan and brush. Seriously, when you know how the Benoit story ends and you read about the state of his brain, seeing Scorpio land arse first on his head like that is hard to watch.

Van Hammer vs ??? 

Fucking hell. Van Hammer’s still here? Story going in was that Col Robert Parker had arrived in WCW and was looking for someone to manage. He offered his managerial services to Van Hammer (yeah, I don’t know either) and Hammer turned him down and attacked him. So Parker is bringing in a mystery man here to deal with it. Hammer walks out in a generic black singlet for some reason. He looks like he’s never met a steroid he didn’t take. The Colonel comes out now...

”Hammer, you remember just a few short weeks ago, you and I had a disagreement. You physically assaulted me. I told you then, that’s the biggest mistake you’re ever gonna make in your entire life. I also told ya, that you can ride your taxi cab and find you another way down here because I got you a ride for the way home. Bring that gurney on down here!” 

He then introduces his ‘mystery man’...

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OH BOLLOCKS. Hammer’s fucked up big time. Big time. 

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Get the fuck out, Hammer. And that’s pretty much the whole match. 35 seconds is all it took. 

”This man rules the world. World Championship Wrestling is gonna need a lot of gurneys.” I think you’re right, Larry. I think you’re right. 

Sid looked like an absolute mega star here. Well he usually did but this felt like something special. The crowd popped big when he walked out, despite him being the heel. And he just looked like the most badass cunt in the world standing on the ramp with his pyro going off. 

Cappetta announces that we’ve got 3 legends matches coming up now. Let’s see how this goes. 

Dick Murdoch, Superfly Jimmy Snuka & Don Muraco vs Wahoo McDaniel, Blackjack Mulligan & Jim Brunzell - 6 Man Tag match 

What an odd looking mix. Snuka and Muraco on the same team, 10 years after their big cage match at MSG, doesn’t make much sense to me. 

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They do tease some dissension but nothing comes of it. This actually wasn’t as bad as I was expecting. Fun for what it is. Highlight is definitely Murdoch hitting a sweet flying headscissors! Well Murdoch in general actually. He’s man of the match for me, no doubt. Finish is a mess though, they all start scrapping and the ref just throws the whole thing out. No contest. Surely one of them would’ve done the job? 

FUN FACT - We’re only 3 matches in and already we’ve had 2 matches featuring murderers. 

Thunderbolt Patterson & Brad Armstrong vs Ivan Koloff & Baron Von Raschke 

Talk about the odd one out. Brad Armstrong there. He’s subbing for his dad ‘Bullet’ Bob who’s out with an injury. This is really short with everyone just getting a little moment to do a spot or two. Patterson pins Baron with a chop to the throat. Nothing match but it’s short and inoffensive enough. 

It’s the ‘A Flair For The Gold’ segment next. I loved these as a kid. 

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And it’s that one. You’ve got two choices, you either fear him or respect him. It’s up to you. 

This is weird. Flair is having a sly pop at Tully to explain him not being there. Ole is in a tuxedo trying to act all suave and flirting with Flair’s ladies. Then Flair brings out Paul Roma as the 4th man and, if it wasn’t for Flair constantly shouting, you could hear an ant piss on candyfloss. Maybe the audience were just too scared of Roma to make any noise. Flair manages to claw something out of it and end it on a positive note, throwing down the gauntlet to Austin and Pillman, so that’s something to look forward to at least. But Christ, this went down like a fart at a funeral. 

Dory Funk Jr vs Nick Bockwinkel 

They hype this as NWA vs AWA. Funk is accompanied by Gene Kiniski, Bockwinkel comes out with Verne Gagne. It’s slow and methodical as you’d expect from these two. Nothing technically wrong with it and they both looked decent for their age. But it wasn’t really my cup of tea. Kiniski keeps interfering for no reason as well, presumably just to get some attention for himself, which makes it a bit of a chore to watch. Ends on a 15 minute draw and they get a nice reception from the crowd. It’s nice that they were given this stage and the finish made sense as it was about raising both mens’ hands at the end of it. It was just a little bit too slow moving for me to really get into. Give me Bockwinkel vs Hennig any day. This, not so much. But it wasn’t bad. Bockwinkel didn’t shake Kiniski’s hand after the match, which makes me think Bock wasn’t happy with him inserting himself into the match so much. 

And that’s pretty much the legends bit over with. Back to WCW 93. 

Dustin Rhodes & Kensuke Sasaki vs Ravishing Rick Rude & Paul Orndorff 

FINALLY! He’s back. For the first time since the Clash in November 92, Rick Rude is back in action. And that’s not the only good news. The ‘tache is back as well! All is right with the world again. 

”Second verse, same as the first. A little bit bloodier and a little bit worse. See ya soon, Dustin.” 

I’ve missed Rude. His absence on the last few shows has been really noticeable. He’s got the US title back as well. He took it off Dustin on Worldwide but it was in controversial fashion. He was declared the winner but both mens’ shoulders were down. This resulted in them battling it out for most of the spring and summer of 93. Orndorff is now the TV champion, having won a tournament in March where he beat Erik Watts in the final. Rude and Orndorff both have lovely blue robes on. And Rude even switches up his pre-match bit to include Orndorff here, telling the crowd to keep the noise down ”while me and Mr Wonderful take our robes off and show the ladies what a couple of real men look like.” 

The match itself here is OK but Sasaki was either green, awkward as fuck or just really struggled to communicate with Rude and Orndorff because he’s repeatedly off with his timing and positioning. It’s not just a one-off either. It’s good when Dustin is in but Sasaki just wasn’t much use. Almost everything he does looks so clumsy and clunky. Rude and Orndorff get the win when Rude hits the Rude Awakening (which Sasaki fucks up) and pins him (which Sasaki tries to kick out of). Jesus wept. Can we end this WCW/New Japan relationship now please? It’s just not working out. It’s not me, it’s definitely you. I think we both want different things. Shall I ring you a taxi? 

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Gordon Solie is here. The velvet voiced little bastard. You can hear the ladies pants just falling off as he speaks. He says there’s going to be 4 inductees for the WCW Hall Of Fame. Wait, there was a WCW Hall Of Fame? Anyway, Flash Gordon announces that Lou Thesz, Verne Gagne, Mr Wrestling II and Eddie Graham are going in. This was pretty cool. 

There’s a lot of bits with Missy interviewing the legends between these matches but they’re pretty awful so I’ve started skipping them. 

But I’m not skipping everything that’s awful...

Sting vs The Prisoner 

So yeah, this wasn’t the original match. Sting was meant to face this monster...

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Scott ‘Flash’ Norton had only debuted about a month before this show. I have vivid memories of him squashing the fuck out of the poor enhancement wrestlers on Worldwide during this time. He was killing them all dead in seconds and looked like the most scary intense beast I’d ever seen. I thought this was the new Big Van Vader at the time. Maybe even scarier. Norton terrified me. And is there any wonder? Just look and listen...

And shit yourself. 

Sadly, this run was seriously short-lived. Within just weeks of signing with WCW, Norton quit. From what I read he wasn’t best pleased about being asked to job to Sting after just a few weeks in the company, so he bailed and fucked off back to Japan. Hopefully taking Sasaki with him. Norton was in a good spot in Japan at the time and was a regular in big matches with the likes of Muta and Hashimoto over there. Probably making some good coin so I can see why he didn’t fancy lying down for The Stinger so soon into his run there. 

So to cut a long story short, Sting is up against The Prisoner instead.

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Who is, of course, Nailz from the WWF. Same gimmick, look, ring attire. Just a different name. He’s even carrying the Bossman’s nightstick. This IS Nailz. It’s like Phil Mitchell turning up in the Rovers, as Phil Mitchell, and offering Steve MacDonald out or something. He doesn’t have entrance music and just stomps down the ramp looking like the total psycho that Vince McMahon found out the hard way that he is. 

We get somewhat of a kayfabe explanation for the opponent switch from Schiavone;

”Apparently, yesterday The Prisoner and Scott Norton had a run-in. And just by looking at The Prisoner you can tell who came out ahead on that one.” 

Nailz vs Scott Norton in a Brawl For All. That’d put butts in seats. Well, I’d have been up for it anyway. 

This is more dire than Danny. Only lasts 5 minutes but it felt much longer. Lots of this...

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And not a lot else. He does offer a variety of chokes though. The old double hander as above, which is likely how he throttled Vince on his desk. He also chokes Sting with his boot, with some cable and with the ropes. Quite a range to his repertoire. Even when Sting fires back, Nailz barely sells it and when he does it looks so awkward. He can’t really bump, can’t take an Irish whip properly. He’s making Van Hammer look like Eddie Guerrero with some of this. I can’t help but laugh. Eventually, Sting puts himself and everyone else out of their misery and gets the pin with a clothesline off the top. Sting’s already halfway down the ramp before Cappetta has even finished declaring him the winner. He’s so done with this shite. 

Surprisingly, this was one and done for Nailz. He was gone and never to be seen again in WCW. He did pop up in New Japan in 1994 though, for an epic against El Gigante...

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Meltzer gave it 5 stars and by all accounts WCW regretted letting him go. 

From that to this...

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Ox Baker and The Crusher interview where Crusher just rambles on about wanting to face Ox in a cage or something while Ox stands there smiling, patting his belly and messing with his jacket. I don’t know what the fuck’s going on anymore. Bischoff looks every bit as bewildered as I am. What a strange show this has turned out to be. 

Hollywood Blondes (c) vs Dos Hombres - WCW & NWA World Tag Team Titles Steel Cage match 

The show gets weirder and weirder as Dos Hombres are out now.

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It’s meant to be Ricky Steamboat and Shane Douglas but Douglas had left WCW by this point forcing WCW to scramble for ideas. And you know WCW and ideas. So we got Dos Hombres. Although they come out to Steamboat’s music and Cappetta introduces them as Steamboat and Douglas. You following? Anyway, it’s the Z-Man under the second mask. The commentators just have to pretend it’s Douglas. It’s the best WCW could do under the circumstances, to be fair. 

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Austin and Pillman are the full-on Hollywood Blondes now though. The name, matching ring jackets, matching tights, the lot. And they’re the champions, having beat Steamboat and Douglas on Worldwide back in March. They had a tremendous series of matches between January and about April but mostly on the TV and house shows rather than PPV and Clashes, so we’ve skipped over a lot of that stuff :( With Douglas gone from the company though, this would serve as the blow-off. 

It’s a really good match. You can’t go wrong with Steamboat vs the Blondes. And Zenk plays his part as the knock-off future Franchise just fine. Austin especially bumps like a madman here. Bouncing about and getting thrown into the fence a bunch. There’s one spot in particular where Austin gets backdropped into the cage and lands right on his neck. The big moment in the match comes when Steamboat takes his mask off and climbs to the top of the cage;

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The Blondes kick out though. Steamboat DDTs both Austin and Pillman and Dos Hombres get another near fall with double dropkicks. But then Austin catches ‘Douglas’ with the Stun Gun out of the blue and it’s over. The Hollywood Blondes keep the gold. 

Barry Windham (c) vs Arn Anderson - NWA World Heavyweight Title 

This can’t be shite. Surely this will break the run of underwhelming NWA title matches we’ve seen so far. They get right off to a fast start and Arn is all over him. He keeps hitting Windham with different moves and going for pinfalls, trying to catch him off-guard early on. Within a couple of minutes he’s already hit the big DDT and come close a couple of times with 2 counts. I love heel Windham from this period. He’s such a nasty bastard. It goes back and forth but the big turning point comes when Double A smashes Windham’s head into the railing and busts him open pretty bad. Yeah, Windham’s head is pissing blood. 

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But this swings it back in Big Baz’s favour and Arn’s hurt his knee now. Man, this is a proper battle. And it hasn’t even been going that long. Momentum shifts again as Arn hits the spinebuster! But he’s too hurt to follow up and Windham bails to the floor. He wants out. He’s grabbed his belt and is fucking off down the ramp. Arn brings him back in the ring and is taking it to him but he knocks the ref down, allowing Windham just enough time to whack him with the belt and knock him out. The ref recovers and Windham gets the pin. 

Really loved that match. My only criticism would be it was a tad short at around 10 minutes and I wasn’t a big fan of the finish with the ref bump. Hell of a match while it lasted though. No foreplay, they just got straight down to business. I think if they’d had just a little bit more time to play with and had a better finish, this would be a match that would be talked about a lot more. 

Big Van Vader (c) vs British Bulldog - WCW World Heavyweight Title 

Main event time. They’re not messing about with Davey Boy are they? From Bill Irwin to Vader in 2 PPVs. Vader was fresh off destroying Cactus Jack here. The memorable (although not for Cactus) incident that saw Vader powerbomb Cactus on the concrete and left him wondering around Cleveland not knowing who he was. 

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This is a fun power match with the story being that Bulldog is the first man Vader has faced who is strong enough to consistently chuck Vader about. And that he does. He throws Vader all about the gaff here like nobody else has before. He even hits Vader with that delayed vertical suplex, which is such an impressive visual and the crowd goes nuts for it. Vader does finally take over though and he beats Davey Boy down in typical bully fashion. Lots of punches in the corner, clubbing forearms and big splashes. 

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Fuck me. Bulldog was an absolute tank in 93. He hits Vader with the running powerslam but Harley Race yanks him out of the ring by the braids. Bulldog goes after Race and suplexes him on the floor. So Vader just comes and twats him with a chair for the DQ. Bulldog wins but Vader is still champion. Scorpio and Bagwell run in to stop Vader doing any further damage but he just mows them all down with ease. Finally Sting makes the save for for new buddy Bulldog. 

Odd show really. Proper mixed bag. Enjoyed the main event but the finish was disappointing. Windham vs Anderson was the match of the night for me. Loved that. The cage match was really good too. As was Sid’s (re)debut. The legends stuff went on a bit too much for my liking though. Probably would’ve been better if they just kept it to one match and the HOF ceremony. Doing 3 legends matches in a row kind of killed the show off, right when the crowd were buzzing coming off Sid’s return. Regardless, moving forward we’ve got Rude back, more of the Hollywood Blondes, more Sid to come. And Regal should appear soon, he’s been in the company since January. 

Edited by wandshogun09

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Ah, that will be where I've seen the show opening guitar bollocks. I've got a soft spot for old boy matches, so I watched Slamboree '92 and '93 quite recently. I love the Legends Match schtick and always felt that Wrestlemania could do with that to break things up a little - a "Hall of Fame Showcase" six-man tag or something. Slamboree '93's Legends Match is an absolute belter, though.

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This was 93, Pat. There was no Slamboree in 92. 

And yeah, I had no problem with the legends matches really. Just thought 3 on the trot in the middle of a PPV was a bit much. But it was fun seeing Dick Murdoch do his thing, and I love me some Bockwinkel. But shave a bit of that legends stuff off and I really think we could’ve had a proper classic between Barry Windham and Arn Anderson. I know longer match doesn’t always = better match but it felt like they were rushing a bit at times. I got the feeling maybe the show was running long and Barry and Arn were told to cut it short a few minutes. Still a belter, I thought. But had potential to be even more. 

Edited by wandshogun09

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WrestleWar 1990! Wild Thing! Will it make my butt sting? (Who gets that reference?) Let's see.

A fucking WrestleWar rap to start off with! Who did that?

Kevin Sullivan and Buzz Sawyer in a tag team! Perfectly matched. Oh christ, it's the Dudes again. Bleedin' hell. Buzz and Kev have a fight at one point, I love it. Buzz was absolutely great. Cackling at the camera after suplexing Shane Douglas on the outside like he genuinely enjoyed it. JR does a Peter Boyle reference at one point, 5 stars. Ending's a bit of a mess but Buzz wins with the splash! Good little match, that.

Norman the Lunatic gets a hug and a kiss off Missy Hyatt before his match with Cactus Jack Manson. He's in there. JR's in good form tonight calling this a "battle of nitwits". Norman sticks Foley in the Bat Cave and wins it after a decent but too long match.

The Expresses collide! Cornette and Nick Patrick nearly have a fight and the crowd Lose Their Shit. This is every bit as enjoyable as I expected, just fantastic entertainment. Rock 'n Roll win it, great stuff.

Skyscrapers vs LOD now! What a card. But Dan Spivey's pulled up lame and is replaced by some bloke in a mask dressed like the Brooklyn Brawler, it's probably fucking Jack Victory. Chicago Street Fight, yessss. Mean Mark gets pissed off after a bit and walks off, leaving his partner to eat a Doomsday Device. Then Doom come out and get Teddy Long thrown at them for their trouble. Doom are wearing lovely tuxedos!

US tag titles next as Pillman and Zenk defend against the Freebirds. Time for Badstreet USA to get stuck in my head for a few days! I hadn't seen much of Dok Hendrix before watching these PPVs but he was fucking ace, wasn't he? Great in the ring, great with the crowd, fantastic mannerisms. The champs retain after a decent match that went a bit long.

Steiners vs Andersons for the world tag titles. Been looking forward to this for ages. Cracking match as expected, a bit different in that neither team ever really had an advantage. Steiners retain and the Amdersons go after Scotty's arm after the match.

Main event time! Luger challenges Flair, can't see how this couldn't be great with the form these two guys had been in for a while before this. A superb match and Luger gets counted out trying to save Sting from the Horseman. Stinger costs Luger the title, the Bible bashing twat.

A really good event, this, not really a dud amongst it all.

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1 hour ago, Devon Malcolm said:

WrestleWar 1990! Wild Thing! Will it make my butt sting? (Who gets that reference?)

It's one of the Major League films, isn't it?

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