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Thread: WCW

  1. #1
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    WCW

    The old WCW thread flew along at a good old rate, and I think it's the kind of thing that'll always be good for conversation.

    I'm actually doing a rewatch of the very last days of Crockett at the moment, and am approaching Clash of the Champions III. So I'll soon be hitting on the beginnings of the Turner era.

    Honestly, it's great stuff. I've lost count of the number of people that it's improved my opinion of, by this point.

  2. #2
    The Brain
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    Doing a deep dive on WCW through the Legacy Series was a real pleasure, and I'm honestly sad that it's all over (the last few episodes are airing in the next couple weeks, cheap plug!!). There are so many hidden gem guys in there, especially in the good years, and there are a lot more good years than people seem to think. The only really bad periods, where the whole product is lousy, is around September '94 to September '95 where fake WWF cartoon garbage is running wild, and then when Russo takes over in late '99 the product hits rock bottom and never recovers, though when Russo is finally gone it does become at least tolerable again with a few good things at the end. Even with guys like Jim Herd, Ole Anderson, and Kevin Nash in charge there is a good crop of entertaining stuff somewhere on the card, though you have to sift through some of the crap to get there. I'm not a fan at all of the late '92 Bill Watts era, but at least it's relatively short, about 6 months or so. All credit to Kevin Sullivan, who led the charge for a lot of the best booking but doesn't get much credit for it.

    The best of WCW would be '89 (technically NWA), early '92 with the Dangerous Alliance, Vader dominating in '93, and of course the whole original nWo era. From Scott Hall first showing up right until Luger's title win, it's damn near a perfect run.

  3. #3
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    Just have to say, I've quite a lot of love for the match I just watched, Rick Steiner defending the TV Title against the Italian Stallion.


    And oh look, it's Bam Bam Bigelow!

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  4. #4
    Senior Member LWO4Life's Avatar
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    Man, just reading that and I've been getting really nostalgic for the old nWo run. If they concluded it with that Luger win, that might have been perfect. At the time, I too wanted the Sting win at Starcade, but in retrospect, seeing how that ended, the Luger win is a better end date.

  5. #5
    The Brain
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    Even putting aside the Sting/Luger debate, things just seemed to start dipping in quality after the big Luger win. The Horsemen getting punked with no chance of revenge at Fall Brawl was very deflating, Piper and Hogan having an absolutely putrid match at Halloween Havoc didn't help, World War 3 was garbage as always, and then the Sting payoff was completely blown of course. They just started tripping over themselves around that time and pretty much never stopped, except briefly with Goldberg, but they fixed that in a hurry too!

    Quote Originally Posted by Prime Time View Post
    Just have to say, I've quite a lot of love for the match I just watched, Rick Steiner defending the TV Title against the Italian Stallion.
    This gave me quite a start for a moment, but then I remembered the most recent Rick Steiner I watched, the worst wrestler alive contender from 2001, bears no resemblance whatsoever to the awesome Rick Steiner of the late 80s and early 90s.

  6. #6
    I've come to appreciate WCW more over the yrs since the collapse than I did growing up. Recently I've been watching episodes of WCW Saturday Night from '92. Quite the roster they had that yr. 2/3 falls matches were regular for a while.

    Twitter: @libsuperstar

  7. #7
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    Those Saturday night shows are great, early on.

    Going back a couple of years before that... Ron Simmons bringing up child abuse in his promo is possibly the biggest double take I've ever done while watching wrestling!

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  8. #8
    The Brain
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    Man, I really love Ron Simmons of that era. He absolutely deserved a world title run, though it wasn't handled well when we finally got to it. Big fan of Doom as well.

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    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    I'm going to enjoy when it picks up but I'm not loving this public service announcement masquerading as a pro wrestler. That's probably a harsh way of putting it but it's a real bizarre act.

    He looks a little bit more wild than I'm used to at this point. I remember him being very crisp but that's not the just yet. I wonder if the heel turn will be where it falls in to place.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  10. #10
    The Brain
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    It was towards the end of the Doom run that I thought he was really showing top level potential. The blowoff match with Butch Reed is very underrated, as it Reed himself.

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    Can't believe this has been going a week and I haven't even posted a single La Parka gif.


  12. #12
    The Brain
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    Bless you for that, Ollie! WCW really missed out not pushing Parka at any point. There was a time late in his run where he was one of the few guys still getting good reactions for his shtick. Missed opportunity, obviously.

  13. #13
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    Rewatch has reached the Crockett debut of Paul E. Dangerously with his version of the Midnight Express....

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

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    Quote Originally Posted by mizfan View Post
    Bless you for that, Ollie! WCW really missed out not pushing Parka at any point. There was a time late in his run where he was one of the few guys still getting good reactions for his shtick. Missed opportunity, obviously.
    Don't worry; I have a feeling La Parka will be getting an opportunity to headline one of the biggest shows of this year really soon.

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    So much the better!!

    I've mostly been exposed to the Stan Lane version of MX so that's been my preference, but at some point I do want to watch a whole lot more of the Condrey version as I've heard very good things. I don't think the MX vs. MX feud really popped the way they wanted it to, for a few reasons, but maybe there is some hidden gold on TV? You'd think at the very least Cornette vs. Heyman in a promo battle would be a lot of fun!

  16. #16
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    From what I gather the Condrey team was better at getting heat in the smaller towns and the live shows, but that the Lane version had what would now be thought of as the better matches because he had the prettier, more varied moves. So they were basically the right way round to take advantage of the way the business was shifting at the time.

    I'm in the midst of all that now, Clash of the Champions: seasons beatings is next.

    Rick Steiner has some good matches back then but his character is so annoying. I'd have totally kicked him out of the Varsity Club too.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  17. #17
    The Brain
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    Is it all the barking, or just that he comes off as dumb as a rock?

    Varsity Club rules! I forget which show it was, but at one point they entered with basically a full pep band and I loved it. Very underrated midcard stable, second only to the poor doomed York Foundation as a fun group from that period that nobody really talks about now.

  18. #18
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    Yeah, dumb as a rock. He barked all the way through the Steiner Brothers and because they were the background noise of my childhood that weirdly doesn't seem all that strange.

    It's all the other stuff that makes you think any wrestler worth their salt could out think him.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  19. #19
    The Brain
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    That was absolutely the impression I always got! Funny that right around that time, late '88, he got so popular as a singles guy that people were wondering about a world title run. I do like Rick's matches in that era but that would have been a bridge too far I think, and I don't think he could have maintained that popularity as a singles act.

  20. #20
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    Given how big the Steiner got I think it's safe to say that they got the call right.

    Incidentally, I used to think as someone who watched the 1990s with the Road Warriors that Animal was more of the workhorse, and Hawk brought the charisma. But a couple of years earlier... And man, Hawk just looks all round like a bigger star.


    What else is happening? Luger and Sting are both over huge. I think Zbyzsko has pretty much gone to the AWA which is a shame. I sense Rotunda is going to lose the TV Title which I'm not down with, he's been great. Different time too, with Steiner getting people to shout 'Retardo' at him.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  21. #21
    The Brain
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    I have always preferred Hawk over Animal in pretty much every category. He was more fun to watch and to listen to.

    There's something very Steiner-ish about that tactic. Pretty sure they'd see their careers go down in flames before they even began if they came around today.

  22. #22
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    Truth be told I always preferred him, even as I thought Animal was maybe carrying some of his load. Knowing where he ends up, I wonder if as they move into the 90s Hawk's performance suffers a little as the problems take hold.

    Incidentally, still enjoying the Fantastics, and they clearly love the work. Not sure I'm loving Eddie Gilbert's stuff at this stage though, and the Simmons heel turn can't get here soon enough!

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

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    The Brain
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    Eddie Gilbert is probably one of my biggest blind spots. Gotta see more of him at some point.

  24. #24
    Cero Miedo Mystic's Avatar
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    "blind spot" is ableist language and a microaggression. You'll want to do better, I'm sure.

    Otherwise, Eddie Gilbert is awesome. We'll meet him if we ever have the opportunity to do GWF: TLS.

  25. #25
    If you want to see some really cool Eddie Gilbert watch the first ECW shows on the WWE network..The collection of talent that made of the early Eastern Championship Wrestling is a real treat.

  26. #26
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    I haven't seen much of that early ECW, struggled when I dropped in randomly. Might have to give it another go at some point.

    On Gilbert I think he's around for quite a bit yet so he's plenty of time to turn me around.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  27. #27
    The Brain
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    GWF and early ECW are both places I'll probably need to take a deep dive into at some point!

    Was talking with Mystic and others about the greatest TV Champion ever. Based on PPV defenses I don't think you can get better than Regal and Booker T, who headed up the division in two of it's best periods, 93-94 and 98, respectively. I haven't seen enough of the actual TV defenses to make a firm judgment but obviously Arn Anderson would be a clear contender. I've got a lot of love for Steve Austin, Bobby Eaton, and the always underrated Johnny B Badd, who brought the title back from a mostly forgotten place at the end of 95.
    Last edited by mizfan; 05-28-2018 at 05:56 PM.

  28. #28
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    Actually curse of the commentator here, as soon as I opened my mouth I started watching Clash of the Champions IV and Gilbert is pretty ace in the tag match against The Fantastics. Chattanooga crowd definitely behind them rather than Bobby and Tommy, too. Starts out doing the same kinda shtick he'd been doing on the TV shows that hadn't worked for me but after a while.... I dunno, he switches gears, looks a lot more intense and serious, less of the 'hot stuff' act and the strutting, and it just works. Really enjoyed the match actually. I think a lot of that early impression is that there's so many great wrestlers around at this point, and so many come across as really legit, and he's doing all his strutting and whatnot, that it just didn't land straightaway. He wasn't doing what appealed to me now, which is obviously a world away from how people would have experienced it in 1988, when you don't have a decade or so of the WWE's sizzle-over-steak mentality clouding how you see things.




    I've seen something mooted by fans at times but I don't think I've ever seen it discussed by people in the business: does anyone know if there was ever any serious consideration in boosting Arn Anderson to the world championship? I know he was always the man behind the man, rather than the man himself, but it seems to me as if the moment when Flair jumped ship... I mean, is it just me or does that look like the perfect time for a gnarly, hard-hitting, mean heel who can talk his ass off would have been an asset. Obviously that has a bit of a knock-on effect on what you do with the Dangerous Alliance, so I guess you can always say that they did what was best for the roster at the time rather than thinking about how much they could necessarily get out of Arn, but I'd be intrigued to know if there was ever a thought that he could be more of if the various stages of management all had him pegged at roughly the same level.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  29. #29
    The Brain
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    I've never heard of Arn being seriously discussed for a top spot, which is a damn shame because I totally agree that it could have been done under the right circumstances. Dusty was right though... he was a walk behinder, and he was satisfied to be just that.

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    I'd not seen it either. Something to think about though, isn't it?


    JYD has turned up in my rewatch. He's one of those guys who says a lot of stuff that doesn't make much sense, but it sounds good.

    Crockett's having a hell of a time with talent though. They've clearly lost Nikita at this point, hence getting Dog in to fill his spot at Starrcade. They weren't able to run Arn/Tully and the Midnight Express for as long as they wanted, which obviously leads to the Original Midnight Express angle. Powers of Pain jumped ship to the WWF when they were set for a big match. Ron Garvin left almost immediately after his heel turn. Robert Gibson left almost to the minute they bought back the Rock N' Roll Express. Dick Murdoch was featured quite heavily in the summer and is now gone. Not seen Zbyzsko or Perez for a while now and judging by where they'll be in 1989, I'm not expecting to see them again.


    A good amount of talent turnover was one of the healthier things about this period, but in a few places you can sense that it's really not what they would have planned and they are scrambling to cover the fact talent are walking out on them, either over their own disputes or to go to Vince.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  31. #31
    The Brain
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    Meltzer once joked that hiring JYD is a mistake every wrestling company makes every couple years. I honestly respect JYD hugely as a draw, what he did in Mid South is one of the most amazing stories of a territory coming back from the dead to packing stadiums you'll ever hear, but he's a bit of a chore to watch, especially as the 80s roll on into the 90s.

    Yeah, lots of talent issues around that time. It's ultimately no wonder they had to sell to Turner. Despite their strengths, they overcommitted in certain aspects and just weren't managed well enough to sustain under the WWF onslaught.

  32. #32
    Senior Member LWO4Life's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mystic View Post
    "blind spot" is ableist language and a microaggression. You'll want to do better, I'm sure.

    Otherwise, Eddie Gilbert is awesome. We'll meet him if we ever have the opportunity to do GWF: TLS.
    As someone who works in the world of -isms and microaggressions and social justice...


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    A real low-key entertainment in this era is seeing who calls him Rotunda and who calls him Rotundo... JR and Schiavone both go with the A, David Crockett and a lot of the wrestlers go with an O.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  34. #34
    The Brain
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    That's got to be the most pointless name change of all time, doesn't it?

  35. #35
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    I always assumed it wasn't a name change so much as people getting his name wrong, though maybe not in his very early days in the WWFwhen it was more consistent to use the O. Here, they're using the two interchangeably. He's Rotundo on the Starrcade promo, and yet both announcers generally call him Rotunda. I just think by this point they've gone with his real name but a lot of the people he works with just don't know it....

    Anyway, as I mention Starrcade, that's next in the chronology. Just saw the last World Championship Wrestling before hand, with Gilbert vs Windham in the main event.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  36. #36
    The Brain
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    It was my impression he was officially "o" in the WWF and "a" in NWA/WCW, though for what reason I can't imagine. If it was never an official divide and instead just countless people fucking it up half the time, that's also hilarious in it's own way. Reminds me of how Gorilla Monsoon never seemed to know (or care) which Rougeau was which.

    Windham in the main event is always music to my ears!

  37. #37
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    He's definitely billed as Rotundo a lot more often so it could have been an official thing. I've just heard it fucked up so often I just assumed they were fucking it up pretty much all the time. But you're probably right. That does make more sense.

    You might like the Gilbert/Windham match so if you want to watch some EG and you've got a WWE Network subscription that main event could be one to dig out. I think it's something like the 23rd of December 88. Whatever the last one before Christmas is, anyway.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  38. #38
    The Brain
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    I'm just gonna pretend you put that in my "recommend" thread and put it on my list!

  39. #39
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    If you missed any of the following, put these on your list too.

    So I've just moved into 1989, so here are the matches I most got into from '88. Not saying I think they're the best or anything so cold and boring, but it's a more personal, impressionist list.

    1) Arn and Tully vs Sting and Nikita Koloff, GAB
    2) Sting vs Flair, Cotc1
    3) Fantastics vs Gilbert and Simmons, Cotc4
    4) Mike Rotunda vs Brad Armstrong, Cotc3

    I guess at 5) you might put Windham/Luger vs Arn and Tully from Jacksonville, but I liked a lot of other matches about as much as that one to be fair.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  40. #40
    The Brain
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    I'll throw that on the list, might be a while before I get there but why not? Sounds like a lot of fun!

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