Waylon, you’re talking about a company that is opening a pay-per-view with THE NEW WORLD ORDER riding in, via police escort, on garbage trucks. Honest to goodness garbage trucks.
CHRIS JERICHO vs. MASAHIRO CHONO
Jericho’s given no entrance music, and an insulting voice-over stating he should have stuck with hockey. He’s given a strong mix of boos and cheers. Chono is introduced as the baddest man from Japan, and thankfully the foreign aspect SHOULD be enough to keep Jericho from getting completely turned on by the crowd. NICK PATRICK is the assigned official, and the only assigned official tonight. Off the lock up, Jericho is accused of pulling on Chono’s hair. Get used to it, it’s going to be a LONG night. Chono tosses Jericho with ease, as various WCW wrestlers take their seats in the crowd like chumps. HARLEM HEAT, SISTA SHERRI, THE FACES OF FEAR, ARN ANDERSON, BRIAN KNOBBS, MONGO MCMICHAEL, and RANDY ANDERSON are amongst the folks I spy. Bischoff brags that they didn’t have to give away any tickets at 7-Eleven; which is true, but the gate take of $68K is still a fraction of the near $500K the WWF took at the Royal Rumble so I’m not entirely sure why he’s sucking his kneecaps over that point. Both guys start fighting on the floor where Jericho hits a “jump back reverse side kick”. Chono posts Jericho, and they roll back in. Dueling shoulderblocks solve nothing, so Chono takes out the knee. A “USA” chant breaks out in favor of … Nick Patrick I guess? Jericho nails an enzuigiri, or “jump backleg roundhouse kick”. Can we turn his microphone off? Chono goes for an STF, but Jericho wiggles and keeps it from getting locked on. A German suplex with a bridge connects, and Patrick counts as slow as possible giving him time to escape. Chono comes back with a Scorpion Deathdrop, and heads to the top rope. Jericho counters him as he comes off the top, but Chono quickly hits an atomic drop and rolls to the outside. He sets up a table and threatens to put Jericho through it. Chris stops the suplex, and brings Chono back into the ring. He goes to finish, and connects with his missile dropkick, or “double dropkick!” Chono manages to get his foot on the ropes at 2 and a half, or 9 in real time. Jericho doesn’t even get frustrated, hitting a fisherman’s buster and nailing the Lionsault for 2 (or, 7). Chono cuts Jericho off as he gets to the top rope, and shoves him through the ringside table to a pretty big pop! Babyface or not, fans love table spots. Of course, he’s easy pickin’s for the mafia kick and Chono wins at 11:16. Mongo makes a stinky face in the crowd, meaning he’s either frustrated with the nWo’s games, or Debra has gas. *
ERIC BISCHOFF thumbs through a catalog of Grandmothers who wanted to be Miss nWo, and given his octaves, would appear to be fully erect.
SOME GUY, who I presume is a local DJ or something (and NO I don’t care what his name is), interviews some of the hags they actually dragged in for the contest. Check out this sexy beast:
HUGH MORRUS (with Jimmy Hart) vs. BIG BUBBER (in a Mexican Death match)
More silent treatment for the WCW guys. Morrus is dressed in “street clothes”, and could easily be confused for future reality star and general annoyance Rupert Boneham. Eric channels his inner McMahon, and sends a message to Macho Man: Go away, you’re no longer welcome here. Morrus drops Bubba with a clothesline, and runs him into the ring steps. Back in, Bubba goes low right in front of Patrick, but he declares it legal. While Jimmy protests, Bubba does it again. A pair of handcuffs appear from god knows where, and they fight over putting them on. Neither succeed, so Morrus just clotheslines his adversary out of the ring, and Hart puts the boots to his old friend. Back in, Bubba finds a chain and punches Morrus in the face with it. Patrick asks him if Morrus introduced it, and Bubba confirms he did, so Patrick allows him to use it. Bubba starts whipping him with the chain, but Morrus knocks it away and wraps up his own fist. A big punch knocks Bubba out, and Patrick doesn’t call a DQ! No Laughing Matter is on point, and Morrus celebrates like he just won the Superbowl. Patrick takes about a hundred years to do his 10-count, and even starts over a couple of times. He does everything he can to revive Bubba, and as Morrus argues with him, Bubba wakes up. Morrus spies him coming, and hits an avalanche. He DEMANDS Patrick start counting, but he won’t until Hugh calms his ass down. Morrus grabs the handcuffs and punches Bubba in the forehead repeatedly, but apparently a poke to the eyes is enough to change things from all the punishment Bubba’s taken. Bubba claws at Morrus’ face, but Hugh goes low and throws Bubba to the outside. Bubba is slammed in front of the set steps, and Morrus tries a corkscrew splash! Bubba moves, and grabs a bike from one of the hags. He revs it up, and “runs” Morrus over (IE: Morrus jumps out of the way and acts like he’s been grazed), which is one of those spots that probably sounded a lot cooler in the back than it wound up on TV. Patrick counts to 10 at warp speed, and Bubba wins at 9:05. 1/2*
Things turn back to SOME GUY, interviewing more of the Miss nWo candidates. Thankfully, these ones don’t have mullets.
Meanwhile, ERIC BISCHOFF brags about the nWo website being on the Cutting Edge of Technology.
Considering Wallstreet hasn’t defeated anyone of note in 2 years, Jarrett probably has no business losing to him no matter HOW the odds are stacked. Of course, that hasn’t stopped them before, and I don’t like Jarrett anyway so I won’t be offended. Jarrett comes off the top with a crossbody, getting the uber slow 2. Wallstreet fires back with a schoolboy, and gets a normal 2. Jeff seems really put off by these shenanigans, because apparently he’s never seen an nWo match in his life. Jeff hits a faceplant and chokes Wallstreet in the ropes. He goes for his straddle move, but Patrick shoves Wallstreet out of harm’s way, and Jarrett crotches himself. A clothesline sends Jeff into the front row, while the cameraman finds a crying DEBRA MCMICHAEL. MONGO MCMICHAEL’s simply irritated by this display and ignores her. A whip sends Jarrett crashing into the front row before they turn tail and head back to the ring. Wallstreet locks on a sleeper in the middle of the ring, and Jarrett fades fast. Debra begs Mongo to do something, but he refuses. Wallstreet releases the sleeper, and hits a “back leg front kick”, but Jeff is in the ropes and can’t be pinned. Wallstreet moves to a chinlock, and uses the ropes for extra leverage, which Patrick THINKS he saw but can’t prove it so he lets it go. Jarrett fights out of the hold and nails an atomic drop. Snap suplex sets up a kneedrop, but Jeff misses by about 8 feet. Still, he recovers first and locks on the Figure Four dead centre of the ring – but thankfully his buddy Nick Patrick is there to pull him to the safety of the ropes. Debra’s literally pulling Mongo, desperately trying to get him to save the day, but he’s not budging. Jarrett goes for an abdominal stretch, using the ropes – but Patrick quickly kicks his arms off the ropes, allowing Wallstreet to reverse and he happily uses the ropes to HIS advantage. Mongo finally has a change of heart, and jumps on the apron to whack Wallstreet in the face with the Haliburton – and MAN did he get a good shot off! Jarrett hooks the legs, and Patrick has no idea what the hell to do now. Mongo orders him to count lest he get hit next, so Patrick does as he’s told and Jarrett scores the win at 9:26. Debra happily raises Jarrett’s arms in victory, while the fans give a weak “MONGO” chant. Best match of the night so far. *
Back over to SOME GUY, who’s moved to the Seniors part of the Miss nWo competition. This is not to be confused with the Senior You can’t tell them from the rest of the skanks, of course. One of the Grandmothers is asked to describe how she’d “buff” Marcus Bagwell, but she can’t hear the question because her Miracle Ear is off. Is this seriously happening?
And the insanity continues, as a band named, and I am NOT making this up, Captain Virgil, deliver some phenomenally awful … metal? Rock? I dunno, he says “NEW WORLD ORDER” a lot. The lead singer, who I assume is Captain Virgil himself, is basically the love child of Ranger Ross and Cobra, but somehow with a lot less fan support. I assume, based on the lack of Wiki page, that this is a career highlight for Captain Virgil and his terrible band.
THE AMERICAN MALES EXPLODE
In the best decision of the night, the show fails to play Riggs’ music. The voice over calls him the #2 loser from the American males. Wouldn’t that make Buff the #1 loser? Did they think that one through? And yes, Bagwell is now officially Buff Bagwell, Marcus is dead. He’s put on about 40 pounds of muscle since he joined the nWo in mid-December, and while I don’t wish to levy unfair accusations, there’s virtually no chance he’d pass a single wellness test today. He’s basically undergone the Roger Clemens post-Red Sox transformation, which would have actually been occurring at the exact same time as this. Can you imagine if he’d decided to drop the Roger in his name upon joining the Jays, and insist that moving forward he’s Crunch Clemens? Why DIDN’T this happen? The nWo clearly wasn’t anywhere near as influential as they thought they were. Riggs is a house o’ fire to start, which Patrick puts a stop to quickly because he’s not following the rules. Buff goes low, and Scotty grabs his aching groin. A donkey punch from Bagwell levels his old friend, but Riggs is into this and starts rolling around with Bagwell on the mat. Buff gives Scotty a perfect shot between the eyes, and Bagwell drops to his knees. Scotty slowly approaches his old friend, but it’s a trick, because Bagwell gives him a bitch slap. Riggs isn’t in the mood to submit to Bagwell, and jerks him over the top rope. With Bagwell in the prone position, Riggs slingshots himself over the top, nailing the Money Shot on the floor. Unfortunately, he may have blown his load a little early, because Bagwell is right back up. Riggs made the critical mistake of only using one rope to slingshot himself, instead of the legendary 3-Roper that only the most strapping superstars in the world are capable of. Bagwell takes back over, delivering some stiff shots right to the mouth of Riggs. Christ, he might knock out a tooth! Back in, Riggs tries to find a second wind, but Bagwell quickly hangs his limp body across the top rope. A voice on the intercom screams “LOSER”, which seems a little unfair to Buff. He just has a lot of endurance, some people like that. Unfortunately, Riggs looks like a man who can’t take much more of a pounding, lying in the corner and gasping for breath. The crowd starts a “BAGWELL SUCKS” chant, and Buff smiles, happy to appease them. Buff grabs his buddy from behind and gives him the clap, but Riggs shoves his butt backwards into Buff’s groin with such force it leaves both of them in a lot of pain.
Back to SOME GUY, continuing his GILF hunt. One of them is asked what she’d wear with Vincent, but her hearing is shot too. A racy, younger lady is asked if she’d help Scott Norton with his “flashing” problem. She stutters that she’d probably add to the problem. “I NEED A COLD SHOWER!” shouts Some Guy! They’re just seeing how far they can push us and still command a $30 price-tag, aren’t they?
DIAMOND DALLAS PAGE vs. SCOTT NORTON
The lack of entrance music really takes the piss out of the babyfaces, because even Page gets a lukewarm response and he’s hotter than the sun right now. Of course, a show built around Completely Rigged Matches probably isn’t helping. What’s ridiculous is that they’re still trying to play it straight enough, so that Nick Patrick is forced to count to 3 eventually. Why bother? In the past he’s had sudden shoulder injuries or neck spasms, so why stop now? The reason, of course, is they don’t want people like Jeff Jarrett or DDP jobbing to their lackeys, but it adds another ridiculously stupid layer to a show that’s already hit high levels of stupid. Page stops the start of the match to take a couple of extra tokes of his cigar, which draws another “LOSER” call from the sound system. Norton knocks Page to the floor, which DDP uses to take a nice long saunter around the ring. Back in, Page slaps Norton and takes him down with a headlock. A candid shot is taken of THE FACES OF FEAR, which sees them chatting and wearing stylish shirts. Absolute missed opportunity here, if they’re gonna play up the jungle warriors thing, then do it. Have them chowing down on gigantic ostrich legs like cannibals. Get them to start slamming garbage cans over each other’s heads to celebrate WCW going on the offensive. I want 3 solid hours of caveman shtick, designed to make all the fans seated around them as uncomfortable as possible. Also in the crowd, STING, drawing a decent pop, as he walks back and forth along the upper levels. Not to be confused with Stink, who is Larry Zbyszko’s version of Cobra, or Stang, which is a figment of Hardbody Harrison’s imagination. Norton misses a Banzai drop, and Page starts throwing haymakers. A clothesline off the top takes down the big guy, but Patrick’s slow count fails to secure the win. A single arm DDT has Page signaling for the Diamond Cutter, but BUFF BAGWELL takes over the house mic. Along with the top nWo stars, BIG BUBBER, VINCENT, and M WALLSTREET, they once again offer him a spot in the group because they love his style. Completely surrounded, Page tells the group that everything’s cool, and he’s gotta go nWo. He accepts the shirt, and offers the hand of friendship to an irate Scott Norton. Still, he accepts to shake … right into the Diamond Cutter!!! Now the fans are awake – and Page rightly takes off through the crowd like a bat out of hell. Alongside 5000 of his closest friends, Page celebrates huge, while Bagwell vows revenge. Patrick, always focused on the match, angrily tells the camera that Scott Norton wins by countout at 10:37. Bischoff calls Page the dumbest man on the planet, but that’s coming from a guy who thought dedicating a half hour of pay-per-view time to a dozen nasty amateur women who have no idea what’s going on was a good idea. 1/2*
Speaking of the hags, SOME GUY is checking back in with even more of them. One of them promises to show why she belongs with the nWo, except there are children watching. “I’m in room 802, we’ll talk later!” On MOST television shows you’d have to assume that room number is fake, but we’re talking about a company who once ran an ad for Cat-Bo with a phone number that led directly to Eric Bischoff’s office. A standing ovation to any fan who can figure out how to drop a German stink-bomb in his room.
CAPTAIN VIRGIL joins us for another song! Is there any chance that part-time jobber Chad Brock is backstage taking notes?
THE STEINER BROTHERS vs. THE OUTSIDERS (for the WCW world tag-team titles)
Voiceover: “Look at these two dog-faced Michigan mutts!” Rick starts looking around for the source of the voice, and I think this show would be instantly redeemed if he went Ron Artest on an innocent fan. Patrick gives Scotty a pat-down, but I don’t see how he figures he’s able to hide any kind of weapon through that ultra tight leather ensemble. It’s a miracle he’s even able to get put it on. Nash and Hall share a tender moment, before Hall decides to start things off. After the lock up, Hall throws his toothpick in the eyes of Scott Steiner which Bischoff sells as “offering a handshake!” That would have been my second guess, after back leg front spinning roundhouse pump kick. Hall goes to the abdominal stretch, even picking up Steiner’s right foot as a nice added touch. Scott appears completely recovered from the groin injury however, as he powers out and hits a pumphandle slam! Hall shakes it off, and walks right into an overhead belly to belly. Nash rushes in, but Rick is there to cut him off with a DDT, and the Outsiders are forced to regroup while the fans eat it up. Back in, Rick pounds away at Scott Hall and goes for the bulldog, but Hall turns and catches him with a fallaway slam for 2! Hall paintbrushes Rick for awhile, but he tags in a pretty angry Scotty Steiner. Unfortunately, his rage doesn’t stop him from getting chokeslammed. Nash comes in with a corner clothesline, but Scott comes back with a boot to the face and a belly to belly for 2. Rick comes in and throws some wild right hands knocking Nash on his ass, and a powerslam gets … oh, right, Nick Patrick. The ECW Fan Cam is getting used with greater frequency now, and there’s a good chance I need an ambulance following my epileptic seizure before the show is done. The Outsiders get in a few cheap shots right in front of Nick Patrick, who spends all his time keeping Scott Steiner on the apron. Why does he bother listening to Nick Patrick? The entire show is a SHAM, just punch him in the snout, pull out a couple of baseball bats, and lay waste to these chumps. The WCW Board of Directors will give you another tag-team title shot, I PROMISE, which you can cash in on as soon as you’re released from jail. Nash gives Rick the snake-eyes across the ring apron, and he’s rolled back in. The sidewalk slam sees a cocky cover, and on top of that Patrick counts super slow for his own team. Da hell? Scott Steiner has enough, and runs over to the other side to belt Hall. Turning to the camera man, “FUCK YOU, AND FUCK YOU TOO!” Bischoff laments Steiner’s unprofessionalism, and promises to deal with him. I seriously doubt he cares. Scott gets the hot tag, kills both guys and drops Hall with a tigerbomb. Nash eats the wrong end of a t-bone suplex, and is clotheslined to the floor by Rick. Hall gets lifted in the electric chair, but Nash saves him and Hall hits the Outsiders Edge onto Scott Steiner from the top rope! Nick Patrick was bumped somewhere in here, and is nowhere to be seen to count the retention, so Rick heads up and plants Hall with the bulldog! RANDY ANDERSON jumps in from the crowd, and counts the pinfall for the Steiner victory at 14:41!!! The fans, suddenly realizing they managed to get through a match without getting screwed over, explode in unison! Ted DiBiase gives us a sign of things to come by promising that decision won’t stand. **
EDDIE GUERRERO vs. SYXX (in a ladder match for the WCW United States heavyweight title)
Eddie is of course the champion, but the kleptomaniac street rat, Syxx, stole it and has been parading around with the belt ever since. So why even bother having a match? Even if Eddie wins, Syxx can run away with it again, and possession is ten tenths the law in WCW. Guerrero is introduced as the “Mexican Jumping Bean”, an insult stolen directly from one Diamond Dallas Page. Man, they REALLY want him on board. Syxx watches the belt get raised to the ceiling, completely missing Guerrero bumrushing him. Syxx fires back with his kick routine, and Eddie is stunned. Guerrero fires back with a European uppercut, and drops Syxx with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. Syxx hits the deck, and Eddie’s right behind him with a plancha, with absolutely nothing Nick Patrick can do about it due to the lack of DQs in a ladder match. Back in, Syxx is placed on the top rope, but he fights Eddie off and nails a spinning heel kick. An early version of the Bronco Buster is delivered, but without the crotch grinding zest he’d add later on. The pair battle to the ring apron, and Syxx wins with a verical suplex over the top and to the floor! Patrick helps him back into the ring, and Syxx gathers a little steam for a tope con hilo! With Guerrero good and incapacitated, Syxx slowly heads to the ramp to grab a ladder, which he promptly uses as a battering ram to run over Eddie. As Syxx heads in, Eddie grabs the end of the ladder and uses it as a catapult to take the ratty little sucka’s chin right off. He leaves the ladder in the corner to beat on Syxx a little more, but that’s a mistake because Syxx throws him across the ring with an Irish whip and sends him crashing into the ladder. A gutbuster is then delivered ON the ladder, and Nick Patrick asks Eddie if he wants to stop … for his own welfare, of course. He wants to continue, and both guys wind up on top of the ladder. Syxx punches him in the gut, but he’s nowhere near the belt so he has to reposition it. Stealing an old Scott Hall spot, Syxx climbs in the corner with the ladder, planning to fall directly down on Eddie, but Guerrero kicks it away and superplexes Syxx back to the middle of the ring. The ladder is repositioned properly, and Eddie heads up – only Syxx takes up the side and takes Eddie down with an “inverted jump side kick”. Syxx has the shot now, and Nick Patrick politely sets the ladder up and holds it steady. However, Guerrero not finished, and races up the other side. Syxx swats him off, but Eddie careens off the ropes and back into the ladder knocking Syxx off too! They both head up once more, and they grab hold the belt and get into a tug of war. Eddie pushes forward, nailing Syxx in the face, and holds on to the gold to win back his title at 13:50! Because it’s not a referee’s decision, there’s very little the nWo can do to contest this. I remember loving this quite a bit years ago, but I don’t feel like it’s held up very well over time. Still, easy match of the night through the heavy fog of awful. ***
The finals of Miss nWo are now underway, as SOME GUY takes us through all the contestants one more time. Each girl awkwardly dances, and are even profiled with their height, measurements, eyes, occupation, hobby, and quote. Some examples include this quote: “Men with bowling shirts turn me on”, this hobby: “cooking bratwurst and french fries”, and this occupation: “school bus driver”. There is very little to suggest that anything here is made up. ERIC BISCHOFF is asked to pick a winner, and admits that they’re all local Cedar Rapids women who supplied their own motorcycles. He narrows it down to the woman who looks like a nasty Luna Vachon (no, really), and the near 70-year old who loves bratwurst and fries. The winner is the well fed corpse, and Bischoff starts NECKING WITH HER. TONGUE AND ALL! THIS IS WHAT YOU PAID FOR! The EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT of a TURNER COMPANY is happily spending your PPV dollars in Cedar Rapids playing tonsil hockey with the local grandmothers on television, and labelling it “entertainment” so he can get away with it. He’s completely lost it – the power has gone to his head. I’ve seen it first hand, as I work in a fairly major corporation. People get promoted to levels they never expected, and start waiving their dicks around for awhile as long as the going is good. That’s Eric Bischoff; he’s achieved a little success with WCW, and now feels he’s bullet proof, so he’s going to live out his Gold Club Wife Swapping fantasies on television. Give someone enough rope and they’ll hang themselves, and Eric’s character is on full display tonight. Is it any wonder they lost the war with this buffoon at the helm? This has to be one of Bischoff’s lowest moments, and completely indefensible for even the most ardent WCW supporter.
Let’s just hurry up and get this stupid show over with, I’m angry, I’m disgusted, and I can’t even cut the main event down to 4 minutes with the help of Robin Hood.
THE GIANT vs. HOLLYWOOD HOGAN (with Nate Newton, George Teague, Ray Donaldson, and Vincent) (for the WCW world heavyweight title)
Bischoff reminds us that Verne Gagne and Vince McMahon owe Hulk Hogan a “grebt of datitude”, and I can’t find a reason why I could possibly disagree. So, after a complete cleansing of the undercard, a long vacation of Hulk Hogan last spring and early summer, and a world of upper card imports, here we are, Hollywood Hogan vs The Giant for the 4th time on pay-per-view, and roughly 800th time overall since the fall of 1995. The more things change … Giant chases Hogan around the ring, but Hogan takes over with his high octane offense, such as The Right Hand. A double clothesline spot takes both guys down, but it’s Hogan that’s to his feet first. Giant is right behind him, and slams Hogan face first to the buckles. Back to the floor, where Hogan grabs Vincent to double team the big man, and it backfires at the speed of a mature hummingbird. Back in, Hogan tries an inside cradle, but Giant just scoops him up and slams him. Giant pounds Hogan down, and he starts selling the old knee for some reason. He gimps over to the bikes, and throws a powder in the face of Giant which DiBiase says is just exhaust. Giant is blinded, and Hogan wraps his athletic tape around the neck to choke the big man out. Still, he can’t force him back into the ring, and Giant slams Hogan’s face into the ring apron. Back in, Giant tries to get a submission with a backbreaker hold, but Hogan won’t tap. So, he choses to go up – but misses an elbowdrop! That probably isn’t smart from a man that size, I cringe just watching him collapsing from that height. Hogan puts on a chinlock, but Giant gets out right away, so Hogan tries his big boot. It’s completely no sold, so Hogan slams him instead and drops the leg. Giant pops up immediately, and chokeslams the champion. Patrick counts 2, but stops because apparently Hogan’s shoulder came up (even though he appears to be clinically dead). Giant tries pinning both shoulders down, getting the same results, and even hooking the leg won’t make Patrick count. So, left with no other recourse, Nick Patrick eats a chokeslam. BUFF BAGWELL rushes in, but he’s chokeslammed right away. ERIC BISCHOFF brings a guitar down to ringside as Vincent takes the chokeslam. M WALLSTREET and BIG BUBBER are disposed of with ease, and as he goes to take care of SYXX, Hogan destroys a guitar over the back of the Giant. This appears to be it, a total shmozz at 10:40. A balsa chair is smashed over Giant’s back, and he’s spray painted by Hogan and THE OUTSIDERS. The fans desperately want Sting, but they’re not getting him tonight – it’s all about the nWo and despite what Larry would have you believe, he’s not a part of the group. DUD
This might be the most creatively stupid show in the history of professional wrestling. It is an absolute trainwreck, from the ridiculous Miss nWo contest, to Nick Patrick’s officiating ridiculousness, to the heat being sapped away from every single babyface by stripping away their dignity. I guess I get it, this is the type of thing a group of egomaniacs would do – but it’s still a business, and they’re taking the nWo thing way too far. Eric Bischoff seems to genuinely believe they’re an alternative brand to WCW, which isn’t the case. They’re a WCW brand, and differentiating them is only making the bread and butter of the company look weaker and weaker. For a group that got so much of the early parts of their ascension right, they’re sure getting an awful lot of the middle parts of the story (IE: the babyfaces rally together and start to come back) absolutely wrong. There’s no end game, and without it, the entire concept of a wrestling storyline is shot.