The SmarK Retro Rant for WCW Slamboree 95 (When I was going through the archives to see what needed to be done for May, I had to check twice to make sure there actually WAS a Slamboree show in 1995 and that I had actually done it. There was and I had, but given I can’t remember a single match from it, that’s probably not a good sign.) – Someone requested a repost of this one on my message board, despite my having never done it before. Ah, my fans, gotta love ’em. Anyway, we’ll get back to Japan next week. – Live from Leningrad, Florida. – Your hosts are Eric Bischoff & Bobby Heenan. Tony is off getting his neck surgery at this point (or as Eric might call it, back-leg-front-neck surgery) so we get the dulcet tones of Mr. Bischoff instead. Neck surgery apparently runs in the WCW announce crew, as Bobby was forced to go through it later that year, too. Apparently they were doing some jobs for All Japan on the weekends and things got out of hand during a match with Misawa. – Opening match, WCW tag team title: Harlem Heat v. The Nasty Boys. I firmly believe that if The Nasty Boys had changed their name to The Nasty Boyz, they could have established the trend that was set years later and thus extended their stay in the wrestling world by hours or even DAYS longer. Think about it. Despite the involvement of Booker T in this, the participation of Saggs and Knobs would seem to preclude any subplots involving shampoo, or personal hygiene of any sort for that matter. (Guessing this was written in 2002, then.) Saggs comes out alone due to an undefined attack on Knobs. Perhaps it involved him stealing a Japanese shampoo endorsement contract, I don’t know. Please keep in mind that if you’re reading this in, say, 2007, these jokes will of course be horribly dated and probably make no sense out of context, but then that’s never stopped me before. (Besides, that’s what 2012 Scott is here for! To explain the dated 2002 jokes!) Hell, if Whoopi Goldberg can host the Oscars with HER material, then this is practically Season 5 Simpsons by comparison. Booker starts for the Heat and slugs away, but Saggs clotheslines him and holds off both Heat members. Double-DDT and he gets a shot in on Sista Sherri as well. Pumphandle slam gets two. Stevie Ray comes in for the double-team, but Sags goes low a couple of times. It gets two. Sags goes up with a double-elbow for two. Saggs chases Sherri like a moron and gets caught in the heel corner and choked out by Stevie. Booker gets a forearm and elbow, and hits the chinlock. The SPINAROONI (not yet named) and sidekick (which Eric calls something so incredibly stupid like “jumping front leg back spinwheel kick” that I’m inspired to note the rest of his retarded kick names) puts Sags down again, and Steve comes in with a dropkick. Sideslam sets up Booker’s Harlem Hangover, but he stalls too long and only gets two. See now, this has always been wrestling’s little mini-play about morality and the importance of following up right away, but really to be completely accurate, you’d have to also note that going to the top rope to do ANYTHING is pretty much a waste of time, given the spectacularly bad track record of heels who attempt to do so. Stevie Ray then makes my week by coming off the BOTTOM rope and yet still blows the legdrop. Now THAT’S funny. Eric thinks that this is so brutal that the ref should just stop the match. I not only fully concur with the sentiment, but I also vote the more extreme measure of building a time machine and going back to the 50s to kill all of the parents of the competitors. However, then I’d probably get jumped on the street by a gang of Comp Sci majors who spend their lives arguing that such a thing is impossible due to the precedent set by the Terminator movies. However, I do not personally discount the possibility of an evil computer from 20 years in the future sending back a cybernetically-enhanced Stevie Ray, whose only goal is to have horrible matches and annoy me. (At least I was in a good mood when I was enduring this.) Sags suddenly starts no-selling (maybe HE’S the evil robot.) and piledrives Booker, as Knobs hobbles out with his indeterminate injury (there’s tape all over him, so it MUST be bad. I’d like to meet the medical personnel they’ve got working back there and find out how I can get a piece of that action — $500 an hour for wrapping a guy up like a mummy every time he gets kicked anywhere in the torso area seems like a pretty sweet deal to me.) He wants the tag! If I’m Sags, I’m thinking “Hey, great timing, I get beat up for 10 minutes and you hobble out like a hero and clean up.” But apparently Sags is too dumb to know when he’s being screwed, because he tags out and Knobs cleans house. Bulldog for Booker, and Stevie gets dumped. Sags then finishes Booker with the Shitty Elbow at 10:52 to win their third and final tag titles. Man, when they announced that it was the Nasty’s final title shot, I was like “Oh, man, they’ll NEVER win now because when does a babyface ever win their last shot ever at a title?” And then they went and won the title, and it was just like Andy Williams doing “Moon River” after all. You’d think that two teams who had as many matches as these guys would break ** one of those times, and you’d be wrong. * – The Man With No Talent v. Kevin Sullivan. Yes, it’s Ed Leslie’s all-too-brief babyface run from 1995, AFTER he realized that Kevin Sullivan was screwing him over as the Butcher, but BEFORE he went right back to him as Zodiac Man mere weeks later to join the fledgling Dungeon of Doom. Of course, later they claimed that he was a double-agent for Hulkamania all along, but then the WWF claims that Stephanie was in on the Vegas wedding and rape all along too, and we don’t listen to them, either. (Obviously time has shown that Stephanie wasn’t exactly putting up much of a fight against HHH.) This was yet another epic storyline (in a series of them) stemming from the labyrinthine plot of the Evad Sullivan feud, as Kevin sacrificed the Butcher in order to get a win over his estranged brother. Butcher swore revenge, and then to show him that he REALLY meant business, he changed gimmicks.TWICE! First to the Man With No Face, and then to the Man With No Name. The first one was naturally false advertising, and the second is self-contradictory, much like rock groups releasing songs called “Untitled”. Besides, Eric generally refers to him as “Butcher, the Man With No Name” during the match, thus pretty much killing the point of the gimmick right out of the gate. Eric’s credibility streak continues, as he points out what great shape Butcher is in, while he staggers out with a Rikishi-like ass and beer gut. (In fairness to Butcher, by the tie he returned as Disciple he was in much better shape and had an awesome beard, too.) Brutus starts out with a high knee and they brawl outside. Back in, Zodiac pounds away in the corner and chops away. Sleeper, but Sullivan miraculously escapes with a jawbreaker and tosses him. More brawling, but Bootyman chokes away when they head back in. Sullivan comes back, but Disciple no-sells and gets a chop to the head for two. I thought the Wahoo match wasn’t on yet? Butcher piledrives him for two. Sullivan goes to the eyes (hey, wait, I thought he didn’t have a face? REFUND!) and they brawl out again. Dizzy Ed meets the post, sort of, because he actually hits nothing, prompting Eric & Bobby to note that Sullivan was aiming for the TURNBUCKLE or perhaps the steel cable, “because it’s sharper”. I cannot make this stuff up if I wanted to. Back in, Furface misses a splash, and Sullivan hangs him in the Tree of Woe and finishes with the double-stomp at 5:45. THANK CHRIST! Well, it IS Easter. -*** Then just when you thought the pain was over, King Curtis appears on the video screen to direct Kevin to form the Dungeon of Doom. Why can’t these mysterious types direct the heels to do something useful, like planting drugs in Hogan’s gymbag and telling the FBI about it? (Or hiding a video camera in his hotel room so they can frame him with a sex tape!) – Legends Match: Wahoo McDaniel v. Dick Murdoch. This is in black & white, because that denotes things that are old and nostalgic rather than fresh and interesting. Gordon Solie is doing commentary, thus giving Bobby Heenan someone to recycle the material on. Wahoo gets a devastating armdrag, but Dick comes back with a series of elbows. They slug it out, and stalling results. Cheapshot turns the tide, but Wahoo gets him back. More stalling. Wahoo starts pounding, but Dick knees him and stomps away. Murdoch goes up and rides him down with a knee to the neck, and the big elbow gets two. Wahoo chops him down for the pin at 6:18. Smell the workrate! Oh, wait, that’s Ben Gay. DUD – IWGP title: The Great Muta v. Paul Orndorff. Wristlock sequence to start, but Paul retreats to the ropes. Muta takes him down and Orndorff stalls. Muta gets a spinkick (“jump back side kick”) and Orndorff stalls. They work off a headlock, which bores the crowd faster than an X-Pac match. Orndorff clotheslines him, but an elbow misses and Muta gets a dropkick (“jump double kick” I shit you not) and elbow. (Bischoff’s commentary here reminds me of Sheldon on Big Bang Theory, endlessly correcting everyone because he happens to know a bit more about an obscure subject that no one else cares about.) Then he hits the chinlock. That goes on for a LONG time, before Orndorff suplexes him and stomps away. The BOOGIE WOOGIE ELBOW OF DEATH sets up another chinlock, this time for Orndorff. That goes on about as long as the Korean War before Muta escapes and misses a dropkick, and Orndorff goes to a facelock instead. Muta comes back with a clothesline and elbowdrop. Orndorff keeps slugging away and a fistdrop gets two. Piledriver is reversed an Muta spinkicks him and gets the handspring elbow for two. Moonsault finishes clean at 14:10. Yes, FIFTEEN MINUTES. ½* – World TV title: Arn Anderson v. Alex Wright. Alex was undefeated but was getting screwed around by everyone in the promotion outside of Ric Flair. Wright gets a quick armdrag to start and works a headlock. That goes on for a while. Bobby, in a desperate attempt to revive obscure 50s catchphrases, notes that Alex has “greasy kid’s stuff” in his hair. Alex gets an enzuigiri (“back leg round kick”) and back to the headlock. Dropkick and back to the headlock. Well, he’s certainly got that one down pat. AA gets a cheapshot to break, but Alex gets an STF after ducking Arn’s version of the enzuigiri. Arn makes the ropes and bails. Alex follows with a pescado, and sends Arn to the post. Back in, Alex goes to the arm, but Arn cheats to win. Spinebuster and he goes to work. Alex escapes a toehold and comes back with a leg lariat (“jump spin wheel kick”), and gets a missile dropkick for two. Arn cradles for two, reversed for two. They collide, and Arn DDTs him back to Germany at 11:34. Not exactly a classic or anything, but it was watchable. ** – Hawk v. Meng. This is bigger than a Surprise Match OR a Bonus Match it’s a SURPRISE BONUS MATCH! Meng slugs away with kicks (“back leg round kicks”) and a clothesline. Piledriver is no-sold and Hawk gives him a neckbreaker, which is also no-sold. Hawk misses a charge and bails, allowing Parker to get his shots in. Hawk meets the post. Back in, backbreaker gets two for THEMONSTERMENG. Hawk comes back, and Meng gleefully no-sells it all like Paul Heyman giving excuses to the bankruptcy court. (High five! Anyone?) Clothesline finally works. Fistdrop gets two. Hawk goes up and misses all the way to the floor, and they brawl for the double-countout at 4:40. It’s both a surprise because I expected a finish of some sort, and a bonus because the match is over. ¼* A group of concerned jobbers run out to prevent any further match outbreaks. (I had totally forgotten about this rant and bitchy sarcastic Scott is pretty awesome around this time.) – The 1995 Hall of Fame inductions are next, as Dusty Rhodes (I know, I’m shocked too), Terry Funk, Antonio Inoki, Big John Studd, Wahoo McDaniel, Angelo Poffo and Gordon Solie are all welcomed in. Angelo’s induction was largely a joke, as he was only invited there as cannon fodder for the Flair-Savage feud. – Sting v. Big Bubba Rogers. Sting brings a table with him. Stalling to start. Sting gets a dropkick and Bubba bails and stalls. He pounds away back in the ring, and uses his emergency backup tie to choke Sting out. What is he, Italian now? (Or Daniel Bryan?) Sting dropkicks him to escape. Bubba slugs again, but Sting clotheslines him for two. They brawl out and Sting rams him into the folded table and slams him on it. Bubba comes back with the BABY POWDER OF DISFIGUREMENT and they head back in, where the table gets set up in the corner. Sting hits it, but escapes a piledriver. Stinger Splash hits table, however. Bossman Slam gets two. He goes up and gets slammed off, and Sting splashes for two. Clothesline and Sting slugs him down, then puts the table on top of him and double-stomps it to set up the Scorpion Deathlock for the win at 9:36. They should market this show as a cure for insomnia. ½* – Ric Flair & Vader v. Hulk Hogan & Randy Savage. Hogan & Vader start and stall. Vader pounds away but Hogan follows suit and gets a clothesline. Vader gets dumped, and Savage follows with an axehandle. They Megapowers try some double-teaming, but get bowled over by Vader. Flair attacks Savage outside, and back in Savage comes back. Flair Flip leads into a Hogan boot. Cute. Savage dumps Flair, and stalling follows. Back in, Flair goes to the eyes and starts chopping, but Hogan comes in and no-sells the chops. Clothesline, but Flair goes to the eyes again and drops a knee. To the top, but Hogan slams him off and goes for a Dusty-like figure-four. They even do the spot where Arn runs in and gets cradled. But Flair goes to the knee and starts working on it. Vader helps out with a toehold, as Paul Wight stands in the entranceway and looks menacing. That pretty much marks the peak for his career. (Hey now, he went on to win the IC title from Cody Rhodes. That’s, something, I guess.) Hogan no-sells a suplex, but puts his head down and gets discombobulated by Vader. Flair chokes him down and Vader avalanches him. Pump splash, but the moonsault misses. Hot tag Savage, who quickly gets decked by Flair, but comes back with the big elbow before Arn pulls him out. IT’S AN AMBUSH, RANDY! Too late. Back in, Flair drops a knee and Vader gets that moonsault, for two. Eric notes that Savage is tougher than Nailz. No way, dude, Nailz beat up Vince McMahon, no one’s tougher than him! (High five! Anyone?) Flair chops away, but Savage fights back. Eric notes that only one thing can stop this match, and that’s a pinfall or the marine corps. I think that one speaks for itself. Hot tag Hulk, who pounds Flair and slams both heels. Big boot, but Arn trips him up. Vader splash gets two, but he Hulks up. Arn hits Flair by mistake, legdrop finishes at 18:56. Hey, Flair jobs again, what a shock. Match was pretty fun. *** Angelo Poffo tries to save Savage from a heel beatdown, but he himself gets beaten down to set up a Flair-Savage match for the next PPV. The Bottom Line: This show is so bad that I hear George Bush is going to invade and destroy it for the sake of wiping out terrorism in the world. (High five! Anyone?) Strongest recommendation to avoid.