WCW Prime: September 16, 1996

Yesterday’s Nitro recap
generated some counter-arguments to my Sting stance. Look, I *know* that the
end game is amazing, and from a writing perspective, everything surrounding
Sting right now is fantastic. My stance, however, is that Sting, as a character,
right now is behaving like, and I say this respectfully, a giant pussy.
Sting was immediately
vindicated, not after a month of back and forth, but within about 10 minutes of
him announcing “yo friends, I’m not nWo”. Can’t cooler heads prevail here? Sting
sulking around for a week, silently steaming and carefully watching his friends’
reactions to see if maybe, just maybe, he might catch a twinkle in their eye
for old Sting? This move is not only out of Every Wife’s Playbook, it is the
first chapter.
Sting needs to
understand, that when you hear his voice clearly state his loyalty to the nWo,
followed by Luger getting assaulted by someone who looks just like Sting, that all
things considered, “IT WAS MY EVIL TWIN~!” usually isn’t going to cut it in the
real world.
Of course, none of this
matters TODAY, because this is WCW Prime. A show, as always, brought to you by
the smiling face of Johnny B Badd in the opening credits.

CHRIS CRUISE and DUSTY RHODES are all
talk about Halloween Havoc. Yo, Fall Brawl just ended YESTERDAY, you think
maybe we can touch on that a little? Wait, you mean they don’t have the results
because this was pre-taped about 4 years ago? Well then!
THE ROCK & ROLL EXPRESS vs. BUTCH LONG and
BILL PAYNE
I am greatly saddened
that, in the strange world of WCW Prime, that we aren’t treated to footage of
Ricky Morton crossing paths with Todd Morton backstage. Would Todd seek support
from his unwilling mentor? Might Ricky tremble, believing to be staring into a
mirror from 2 decades earlier? Would they just lie around, desperately trying
to crawl to the buffet table for a snack, just coming up short time and again?
Payne and Long continue to impress, using each other as weapons, suplexing each
other on the ever-selling Morton. Alas, they are not rewarded for their steady
improvement, as Long misses a top rope guillotine legdrop, bringing in the
fresh Gibson. Double dropkick at 5:02 sends
the Express to the pay windah. **
JIM POWERS vs. MANNY FERNANDEZ
Dusty Rhodes doesn’t have
a lot of use for anyone who wrestles Fernandez, though he tries to throw a
little love to Powers, as a guy who “came in through the back door”. That’s how
Triple H rose to power, you know. Cruise is so enthralled by this A-level
matchup, that he starts listing upcoming house shows. Powers uses all his
favorite moves, the headfirst slam to the buckle, the punch to the gut, and his
finisher, the powerslam at 3:14. DUD
HIGH VOLTAGE SUCKS vs. PRINCE IAUKEA and LEROY
HOWARD
Dusty admits he has no
idea who Iaukea and Howard are, even though they wrestle semi-regularly on this
program. Howard channels his inner Brock Lesnar, unleashing a flurry of
hiptosses. Cruise starts selling Iaukea as a Power Plant success, just based on
the fact that only 10% of guys who apply are still there after a week. Of
course, that’s likely due to the fact that the head trainer is a wrestling
cannibal, and the only reason Iaukea’s been left alone is because of his Samoan
blood (which is poisonous to leprechauns). Cruise starts openly questioning
which guy is Kaos, and which one is Rage – asking how in the hell he could
possibly tell them apart? Of course, Dusty Rhodes is no genius, and even HE
points out that Kaos has a lot of blonde hair, and Rage does not have much hair
at all. Cruise: “How am I supposed to remember that?” For the love of god.
Doomsday Device finishes at 6:53. *
JOHN TENTA vs. FIDEL “BARRIO” SIERRA
Tenta continues to sport
the half-shaved look, because it’s how he “remembers”. I’d prefer to forget
everything about that insipid feud, not to mention that even Bubba has moved on
to worrying about “Glacier”. Tenta is not at his finest here, moving at the
speed of a “glacier”. Shark Attack finishes at 2:34. DUD
SERGEANT CRAIG PITTMAN (with Teddy Long) vs. CHRIS
BENOIT (in the Prime Cut Moo Match of the Week)
Yuck – we’ve done this to
death, and it’s been no good. I don’t even have Nick Patrick to referee here,
with the lingering threat of something dastardly. Which is unfortunate, now
would be an ideal time to do something, nobody is watching at home, and the
fans in attendance are transported pieces of Disney’s “It’s A Small World”
ride. Pittman works Benoit on the mat, while Cruise starts reading from the TV
Guide (on this day, Perry Mason, Jackie Gleason, and M*A*S*H* debuted, he
informs us). I have to imagine at this point, Cruise and Dusty were well aware
that Prime had been cancelled, and were at the point of verbal constipation –
no shits given. Benoit starts stomping on limbs, but Pittman just gets mad,
selling nothing. Benoit moves to a rear chinlock, which is pointless because
Pittman’s head was allegedly formed by rocks according to announcer lore.
Brains too, I reckon. The fans are totally into this, yelling and screaming,
because the big sign that reads “STAND AND CHEER” are lit up like a Christmas
tree. Fans start chanting USA, which is technically correct but I don’t imagine
they know this. Pittman hits a sunset flip, but Benoit’s in the ropes. He keeps
coming, with a “balleh to balleh”, but Benoit kicks out at 2. The battering ram
knocks the wind out of Benoit, and Pittman calls for Code Red, but Benoit
squirms to safety. Pittman charges with an avalanche, but Benoit awkwardly
lifts his legs to block it, and pins Pittman with his feet on the ropes at 11:20. I totally understand that
Pittman and Benoit are probably the biggest stars to ever show up for these
tapings, but we don’t need to book them together anymore. Or Pittman at all.
*1/2
The announcers go back to
their Halloween Havoc talk. Cruise believes Savage will defeat Hogan at the
PPV. I don’t want predictions unless they’re ludicrous; like maybe Hogan shows
up wearing the wig/mullet from his 3 Ninjas Movie. Ha ha, that would never
happen, which is a real shame.

No Prime next week,
because apparently my collection is missing it. Which is a real shame, that’s
the show that features the 30-minute Iron Man between Benoit and Guerrero in a
5-star barn burner, and the main event is Ric Flair and Arn Anderson against
the Steiners inside Hell in a Cell. I wouldn’t lie to you, would I?