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I've been watching Nitro back this past while, as I'm sure loads of you have done since the Network came about. (Really, it's gone on several years now and I'm still in November 1996. I'm going through the PPV's as well, and the same in the WWF - that's my defence for it taking me an age!)

Anyway, I'm watching World War 3 here at the moment. What hit me right away is how they shot it in a way that shows they are somewhere unique. It was at The Norfolk Scope in Virginia. The place appears massive, much larger than the reported capacity and it has a bloody great looking roof. 

What does look stupid, production wise, is the position of the commentary table. We all know they watch the monitors and not the action. That doesn't make it any less stupid when the commentators are shown facing a ring with nothing happening, while they have their back to the action in the ring behind them. If it must be that way, shoot it in a way that they aren't shown. Big Tone does a good job of addressing the absurdity of it though instead of pretending it isn't happening. 

Ultimate Dragon and Rey Misterio had a lovely opener. Rey gets beat from pillar to post really, before getting in a brief comeback and then losing clean. He still looked pretty good though as he took an absolute leathering until that point. 

Jericho Vs Patrick was a tonne of fun, with Nick Patrick's shenanigans continuing to be one of the highlights of the shows. 

Speaking of continuing to be something. . . On a rewatch, the stuff involving the NWO continues to be a chore. At this point, with how things have went, I think it's already went stale. It doesn't help that every cunt and their dog is already in the bloody thing, but they are already diluted. Looking back without watching over it again I would have said that was mad, that creatively they wouldn't run out of steam for another year, but it certainly feels they are at, or close to that point on a rewatch. It's just too much heat. Sure, the build of Sting is going great, and it's clear that he's heading for Hogan so Hulk needs to stay strong. And Lex is looking good every week, like he usually did, carrying the fucking promotion a lot of the time I'd say (without getting the credit for it in a lot of circles). But by God, if Hogan was untouchable for now, somebody needed to get some shine on Hall, Nash, The Giant, Syxx or even fucking Virgil for God sake. 

I'm not looking forward to watching Souled Out, but If I remember right, Starrcade 96 was pretty damn good, other than the main event? Though I've just seen it the once, many moons ago. 

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The weirdest thing about Hogan vs Sting for me wasn’t anything to do with Starrcade 97 or their crap matches after that. It was their first ever singles match in November 1995. From the randomness of

This thread reminds me how brilliant @wandshogun09's WCW recaps used to be. 

Vicious and Delicious were great. Mug off Wallstreet and Big Bri all you want and I'd defend you for doing so, but V&D were a highlight.  Also possibly the best tag team name in history.

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The Norfolk Scope did look great. WCW held a lot of shows there over the years. First thing I think of when I hear ‘Norfolk Scope’ (which isn’t often, obviously) is the Flair and Arn vs Hollywood Blonds match from 93.

Starrcade 96 has Ultimo Dragon vs Dean Malenko and Jushin Liger vs Rey Mysterio Jr on the undercard so if nothing else you’ve got that. I seem to recall enjoying the DDP vs Eddie Guerrero matches around that time as well. Can’t remember anything of the Hogan vs Piper main event oddly enough.

I’ll enjoy this thread. My planned ECW rewatching has already hit a brick wall but I can watch old WCW anytime and still enjoy it. It’s my ‘go to’ as much, if not more than late 80s-early 90s WWF. 

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Malenko, Misterio and Dragon are definitely consistent highlights at this time. You can count on getting at least one good match involving them and also a good Luger match, sandwiched between all the Jim Powers, French Canadians, babyface Jeff Jarrett, Johnny Grunge and a three hour NWO promo. 

I can't help but think if The Norfolk Scope was ran today, the ceiling wouldn't even be shown. WWE are in a baseball stadium at the moment, and I wouldn't have had a notion about it from watching Smackdown. 

The main event battle royal was, as always, a pile of nonsense. It actually starts out hot with The Horsemen and The Dungeon of Doom going into the stands, but it very quickly descends into a really boring battle royal where nothing happens and if it did? You wouldn't have been able to see it anyway. It's very close to having a great finish, but they absolutely fuck it, which is no surprise, managing to suck every breath of life out of the crowd. 

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I’ve been doing this. Just finished SuperBrawl 1998. It’s already a bit of a slog as Nitro has gone to three hours on top of Thunder having started, so it’s taking much longer to get through a week’s TV.

Sting and Hogan have had three world title matches and they’ve all been… crap. There’s the much-publicised Startcade 1997 match, but they then had a rematch on the next night’s Nitro that went off the air halfway through. The finish was shown and must have been messy as the belt is then held up. So, two months we have to tread water until Hogan and Sting once again tangle for the belt and when they do, that bout has a screw-y finish too!

Given WCW wanted Sting to be their bastion of hope against the evil nWo and the narcissistic Hollywood Hogan, they do a fine job of making him look like a chump who can’t win the belt cleanly.

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The weirdest thing about Hogan vs Sting for me wasn’t anything to do with Starrcade 97 or their crap matches after that. It was their first ever singles match in November 1995. From the randomness of it just being thrown out there on an episode of Nitro, to it being in the middle of Hulk’s odd phase of wearing black pre-NWO and having no ‘tache, to Sting wearing the red and yellow instead. 

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I remember this completely catching me off guard when I saw it. It was actually shown on ITV over here in the dying days of the Worldwide run. Must’ve been one of the last episodes of WCW on ITV because this was late 95 and I don’t recall their coverage going into 96. By March or April 96 we were getting Nitro on TNT anyway. But yeah, I switched Worldwide on one Saturday and was met with a Hogan vs Sting dream match that I didn’t know had even happened. I seem to remember they’d dubbed different commentary on it, Chris Cruise and someone I think and it wasn’t a great match but I still remember the buzz I felt switching the show and getting this match as a total surprise. That kind of pleasant surprise died out when we got the internet a couple of years later. 

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On 1/23/2021 at 6:37 AM, WeeAl said:

 

What does look stupid, production wise, is the position of the commentary table. We all know they watch the monitors and not the action. That doesn't make it any less stupid when the commentators are shown facing a ring with nothing happening, while they have their back to the action in the ring behind them. If it must be that way, shoot it in a way that they aren't shown. Big Tone does a good job of addressing the absurdity of it though instead of pretending it isn't happening. 

 

I always thought it was odd that the announce desk faced the wrong way but I guess it was there more as a presenting desk and it was better to see the fans behind them. Also I assumed they would all swivel around and dangle their legs off the stage for comfort while they watched the matches. 

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I'm up to November 99. Christ the filthy animals are as bad as I remembered. What a waste of eveyone.

Its really fallen off a cliff since early 99. No big NWO blow off. Nash and Hall just pissing about. Everything is meaningless.

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8 hours ago, simonworden said:

I always thought it was odd that the announce desk faced the wrong way but I guess it was there more as a presenting desk and it was better to see the fans behind them. Also I assumed they would all swivel around and dangle their legs off the stage for comfort while they watched the matches. 

The original Nitro desk was on a massive turntable. They faced away from the ring when they did their pieces to camera, and then it would be turned 180 degrees for matches. There was one episode where you could see production crew spinning the three of them in a long shot.

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50 minutes ago, boyfriend said:

I'm up to November 99. Christ the filthy animals are as bad as I remembered. What a waste of eveyone.

Its really fallen off a cliff since early 99. No big NWO blow off. Nash and Hall just pissing about. Everything is meaningless.

99 had the west texas rednecks so not all bad

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6 hours ago, Onyx2 said:

This thread reminds me how brilliant @wandshogun09's WCW recaps used to be. 

Thanks, I might pick it back up at some point. 1994/95 oddly intrigues me. There was some good stuff in that period but also a lot of cack. You’ve got Steamboat, Austin and Dustin tearing it up in the mid card and the emergence of the Cruiserweights creeping in in 95, but also Hogan in the death throes of his babyface run fucking about with the Dungeon Of Doom and odd shite like Honky Tonk Man coming in. Could be fun to revisit for how much of a mixed bag it is. 

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And has amazing music. For the true WCW experience for those years give Saturday Night a wide berth. The Syndies are where it's at. Especially WCW Prime with Rhodes and Cruise.

Edited by PowerButchi
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