What the World Was Watching: WCW Saturday Night – March 18, 1995

Tony Schiavone and Bobby Heenan are tasked with commentary and they are taped from Atlanta, Georgia.

Opening Non-Title Contest:  Harlem Heat (WCW Tag Team Champions w/Sister Sherri) (15-0-1) defeat Kenny Kendall & Eddie Jackie when Booker T pins Jackie after the Heatseeker at 2:12:

Jackie is most noted for having a victory over Steve Austin in 1996 when he and Jason Ahrndt defeated the future WWF Champion in a handicap match on Superstars.  Harlem Heat dominate their opponents, destroying them in turn on their way to victory today.  With this win the Heat accomplish the “WCW Saturday Sweep.”

A video package recaps the feud between Harlem Heat and the Nasty Boys.

A video package recaps the feud between Arn Anderson and Johnny B. Badd.  Gene Okerlund then proceeds to interview Badd, who brings out his trainer Rock Finnegan.  Badd shows off some boxing punches as he pledges to show fans who the better man is tomorrow night on Uncensored.

Television Championship Match:  Arn Anderson (Champion w/Colonel Robert Parker) (7-6-1) pins Al Phillips after a DDT at 1:04:

Schiavone is at a loss for words in trying to explain why Phillips warrants a title shot.  Clearly, he was not worthy as Anderson quickly catches him with a DDT and mocks him before scoring the winning fall.

Okerlund interviews Anderson and Parker, with Parker invoking the memory of the awful Antonio Inoki-Muhammad Ali match from 1976 to justify why his man will win at Uncensored.  Anderson warns Johnny B. Badd that he is no Horseman and will become yet another victim at his hands.  This segment showed why Anderson did not need Parker.

Okerlund does the Uncensored Report.

Brian Pillman (4-0) beats Manny Fernandez with the Atomic Blonde at 2:32:

This Manny Fernandez is not the one of 1980s NWA fame.  Rather, it is a small, generic looking jobber who Pillman outwrestles for several minutes before hitting a top rope splash, which Schiavone refers to as the “Atomic Blonde,” to remain undefeated.  According to backstage news, Pillman is being kept in reserve for a cruiserweight title tournament but that is not happening yet so he is grinding his wheels with nothing to do.

Sergeant Craig Pittman (2-0) defeats Kip Abee via submission to the Code Red at 2:25:

Pittman sings himself a Marine marching tune on his way to the ring.  Pittman is showered with boos, but aside from a fierce expression there has been no reason given for why we should hate Pittman.  In a shoot interview Pittman said that when he came to WCW and had been on television for a few weeks he received his first piece of fan mail.  Excited, he tore into it only to have the writer direct some nasty, racist remarks his way.  Pittman shows more personality in this squash, doing some one handed push ups after he gets bored taking Abee down and when Abee comes at him to break that up, Pittman gives him a fireman’s carry slam.  Schiavone makes it seem like this is Pittman’s first match and he puts over Pittman’s finisher as the “Code Red,” the first time that his cross armbreaker as been referred to as such on WCW television.

Okerlund interviews Pittman, who cuts a generic interview and awkwardly tells Okerlund to get a haircut.

Call 1-900-909-9900 to hear if someone from the “dark side” will be in Hulk Hogan’s corner at Uncensored!

Lord Steven Regal (5-1) wrestles Bobby Eaton (3-6) to a no contest at 3:15:

Dave Sullivan has been seen in the crowd for the last several matches.  Both men are heels but the Atlanta crowd quickly gets behind Eaton because the British Lord bullies him early.  Eaton mounts a furious comeback, with Regal rolling out of the ring and demanding an interview with Gene Okerlund, saying that he wants to call Eaton “Robert” and make him his tag team partner.  Regal and Eaton then walk to the locker room to discuss future business.  THIS is how you tell a story.  Rating:  **

Non-Title Match:  Vader (U.S. Champion w/Ric Flair) (8-1) pins Tracy Benton after a powerbomb at 1:38:

Flair slaps Benton before the match, somehow putting Benton on dream street, and Vader stiffly lays in more shots before the finish.

After the bell, Vader gives Benton a Vader Bomb and Dave Sullivan comes to ringside to try and get Flair to call Vader off.  Flair sucker punches Sullivan instead and Vader powerbombs and Vader Bombs him before doing a splash off the top rope.  Flair lays in some additional blows, forcing Heenan to get in the ring and pull Flair off.  Commissioner Nick Bockwinkel also gets into the ring and kicks the heels out of the building.  The Heenan bit was a nice touch to put this segment over since he hated Sullivan, and in some ways this made me wish for a Vader-Bockwinkel match.

After the commercial break, Heenan says that Flair has snapped and walks off at a loss for words.

A video package hypes the Sting-Big Bubba Rogers match at Uncensored.

Alex Wright (20-0) defeats Frankie Lancaster after a reverse flying body press at 2:18:

The split screen shows Dave Sullivan being wheeled out of the arena in an ambulance.  That makes it tough to focus on this squash, with Wright nearly flying over Lancaster’s head on the finish.

A video package recaps the feud between Dustin Rhodes and the Blacktop Bully.

The Blacktop Bully (w/Colonel Robert Parker) (13-0) beats Leroy Howard via submission to the Breaker 1-9 at 2:56:

This squash exists so Schiavone can explain to fans what a “King of the Road” match is and how Dustin Rhodes or the Bully will win by blowing an air horn at the back of a moving tractor trailer that they will wrestle on at the pay-per-view.  The Bully does his usual beating on the arm before winning with the Breaker 1-9 to complete the “WCW Saturday Sweep.”

A video package hypes the Randy Savage-Avalanche match at Uncensored.

Handicap Match:  Avalanche (w/Big Bubba Rogers) defeats Mike Khoury & John Crystal when he pins both men after an Avalanche Splash at 1:50:

Avalanche has wrestled in two other handicap matches this year, previously defeating Khoury in one of them in January on an episode of Saturday Night.  Avalanche goes the predictable route here, laying the two jobbers on top of each other for the Avalanche Splash.

Okerlund interviews Avalanche and Rogers.  Rogers says that Avalanche will take care of Randy Savage at Uncensored while he takes care of Sting.  Avalanche repeats a prior talking point about an avalanche being in Savage’s future.

A video package recaps the Meng-Hacksaw Jim Duggan feud.

Meng (w/Colonel Robert Parker) (2-0) defeats Barry Houston with a thrust kick in nine seconds:

Houston is quickly annihilated by Meng as one thrust kick puts him down for the count on today’s broadcast.

A video package recaps the Hulk Hogan-Vader feud.

Dustin Rhodes & Johnny B. Badd (2-0) beat Pretty Wonderful (0-2) when Badd pins Roma with a top rope sunset flip at 10:44:

These two teams squared off two weeks ago on WCW Pro with Rhodes and Badd winning.  With Roma soon to be axed from the company, Pretty Wonderful is on job duty.  Despite a rather predictable outcome, the bout entertains with Pretty Wonderful working a good heat segment on Rhodes before succumbing in the finish when Badd pins Roma.  There were no dull moments here and Rhodes and Badd work well as a team.  Rating:  ***

-A recap of Ric Flair and Vader beating up Dave Sullivan earlier in the show is aired.  Flair and Vader come out to be confronted by Commissioner Nick Bockwinkel.  Bockwinkel tells Vader to show up next week with his lawyer and checkbook.  Bockwinkel also tells Flair that he is kicking him out of WCW, but Flair says who cares because all hell is going to break loose at Uncensored.

The Last Word:  This episode was well paced, with matches strung between timely recaps to give viewers a variety of reasons to purchase Uncensored.  WCW is going all out to portray that pay-per-view as a show without any rules, almost as if it was booked by Paul Heyman and ECW.  However, knowing WCW it is hard to see any extreme action happening with Hulk Hogan’s cartoonish style dominating the product.  Still, Vader and Flair gave this build everything they had since Hogan refused to appear in the weeks leading up to the pay-per-view.

Up Next:  WCW Main Event for March 19!