Whatever date this actually aired in the UK, I remember going to Blackpool with my sister and grandparents for a club outing and buying a toy mobile phone. My dad had taped this show for me and when he saw the phone he swiped it off me and went “This is Paul E Dangerously, the manager of the new TV champion, Stunning Steve Austin!” – spoilers, dad! What a jerk!
Coming up: Mr. Hughes attacks Dustin Rhodes.
Intro: Tony and Jesse are in front of a green screen this week with the crowd behind them. Not a good look. Big news – Larry Zbyszko has left the Dangerous Alliance. Jesse thinks he’s flushed his career down the bog. Jesse’s going to talk to Paul E about potential replacements.
Dr. Death Steve Williams and Terry “Bam Bam” Gordy vs. Joey Maggs and Terry Bronson
Courtesy of WCW Saturday Night, J.R. on the mic. This was my favourite version of Jim Ross, the enthusiastic fact file, rather than the embittered perv. Jim talks about how Terry started wrestling aged 16. Williams folds up Bronson with what would become the backdrop driver. Maggs tags in. Big dropkick from Gordy. I know Doc and Gordy had both had great success with the Freebirds and with the Rat Pack and Varsity Club, but I always looked at those years as their crazy college years and this period as their trained professional days. JR reminisces about as many Doc and Gordy stories as he can recall. Terry just joyfully no-sells as much as he can from both jobbers. Doc finishes with the Stampede. Match went too long, but was an effective showcase for the MVC to demonstrate they were back in town.
Ron Simmons vs. Jerry Faith
Faith attacks early and gets rewarded with a powerslam and headbutts. Tony tries to promote matches against Abdullah the Butcher and Greg Valentine, but I think Abby was gone by this point after refusing to do a job at the Omni to Dustin Rhodes. Simmons just implants Faith into the mat with the sidewalk slam for the win.
WCW Magazine (w/Eric Bischoff): Sting’s looking forward to his match with Cactus Jack. We were rewarded with one of Sting’s best matches and Jack’s personal favourite for a long time.
Super Invader (w/Harley Race) vs. Chris Sullivan
Not a handicap match for a change. Side suplex to start. Jesse thinks he saw Invader at a cock fight in Thailand. Whatever you guys were doing in the WWF, Jess. Invader works through some very Herculean moves, including a powerslam and press slam. Tony remarks on Harley going blonde again, but neglects to mention his mullet. Powerbomb to finish.
WCW Magazine: Madusa and Missy got into a row on WCW Saturday Night, with Madusa calling Missy a bitch and Missy trying to take her top off. Missy calls Madusa musclebound in a promo while impersonating Hulk Hogan and a cat. Rundown of the full Beach Blast card too.
Stunning Steve Austin (w/Paul E Dangerously) vs. Barry Windham – WCW World Television Championship match
Rematch from WCW Saturday Night, where Barry won the belt. Tony pimps the latest WCW Magazine, with a centrefold of Paul E’s face on a dartboard, which, as I’ve mentioned before, I had on my wall. Austin can’t avoid Barry’s hammerlock early on. Barry rams Austin’s head into the toe of his boot on the top turnbuckle. Watching BW work so effortlessly makes it all the sadder that he wasn’t bigger than he was between injuries and laziness. Would’ve loved to have seen him in his prime against Shawn Michaels. Tony takes issue with Jesse judging Paul E’s character just on the fact he’s paid for lunch for him a few times before. Austin manages to clothesline Barry out of the ring with an impressive bump. Barry comes back in and gets slammed off the top. Austin, in a bizarre visual, lifts Barry up in a bearhug. You have to realise there’s about five inches in height between them. Barry comes out with a belly-to-belly, but can’t get his funny piledriver and gets backdropped. Austin tries a Konnan-like gambol into a shoulder block, but misses and hits the post. Barry with a punch to the head instead of a lariat, followed by a legdrop for the win, but Austin has his foot on the rope so the match goes on. Sets up for the superplex, but Paul E tries to come in. Austin sneaks out to get the belt. Barry returns and gives a bewildered look when he sees Austin on the mat, flat on his belly, instead of where he left him. He picks him up, gets blasted with the belt, almost taking Fonzie down in the process, and pinned. Austin has the belt back again.
Interview: Jesse congratulates Paul E on Austin winning the belt back, with Paul E calling Austin the “best damn (bleeped) wrestler today”. But on to sourer news, with Zbyszko out of the DA. Paul E promises a world of trouble for him. He’s searching for a replacement, but nobody named yet.
The Natural Dustin Rhodes vs. Mr. Hughes
Hughes blindsides Dustin with his typical sloppy offence, which Dustin still sells like a champ. Dustin ducks a clothesline and hits the bulldog out of nowhere in under a minute. Good for Dustin, Hughes was doing jobs like mad before a short-lived repackaging as the Big Cat, tag partner for JYD in one of the worst tag teams ever.
WCW Magazine: Ricky Steamboat talks about the Iron Man match at Beach Blast. Nothing much to say.
Next week: Tony and Jesse recap the TV title change and talk about Brian Pillman against Greg Valentine for next week as well
Conclusion: Still can’t believe my dad spoilt that match for me, not that there was much to spoil!