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Thread: WCW

  1. #81
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    So I just watched Halloween Havoc 1989, and I'm already feeling the loss of not having weekly shows. I was toying with the idea of watching through each PPV and Clash in order but to be honest I might just skip ahead and pick it back up where Saturday Night starts on the network, and come back to this stuff when I find somewhere online.

    Anyway, I quite enjoyed Havoc for the most part. There's a few things, though. One is I think 'electrifying' the cage is probably a gimmick too far - though, who knows, back then I may have liked that. I certainly thought the idea for an inferno match was cool until I actually saw one. The presentation of the Samoans as savages is about as bad as I've seen it back here and only gets off worse treatment because the WWF are going to reproduce much the same thing in the 1990s. The crowd are really hostile, and there's a bit of a forerunner to what you get with ECW and the bigger promotions in the 1990s here because we're in Philadelphia, and I swear that one crowd shot reveals someone who would become an ECW regular in the exact same clothes that he'd wear to every damn show. I do wonder how much better the show would have been if they weren't burying Z-Man, The Dynamic Dudes, and pretty much any other babyface that isn't in the main event, the Road Warriors or the Steiners.

    And lastly, although it's a really solid show, I'm not sure that I'd say anything jumped out at me as 'you must see this'. And to be honest aside from the obvious highlights that's been the case for most of 1989. I've only got a couple of shows left to change that impression and it's definitely a lot less enjoyable than 1988 was on the whole. Is that because Dusty isn't booking? Because there's no Tully, Arn, or Windham? Who is to say for sure, but it's definitely been felt.

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

  2. #82
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    Really remember that crowd, definitely ECW foreshadowing. There's some PPV, I want to say Slamboree '93 or '94, where Hat Guy is front and center and leading the charge on a lot of huge reactions. It's sort of fun in my opinion, though I feel like you might not like that sort of thing as much.

    Definitely a mixed bag of a show, from what I remember. Liked Steiners/Doom, Luger/Pillman, and the MX six man. Main event was too much of a muchness for me, Sting swinging around like Robin Hood is a cool visual but the match just doesn't do much for me, it's decent but below potential considering who's involved. Didn't really care for the rest of the card. Tommy Rich vs. Cuban Assassin... NO THANK YOU.

  3. #83
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    I mean, other than the gimmick, there's nothing really wrong with that. It's just sort of there. But then I believe you need those kind of matches and their demise has hurt the contemporary PPV.

    As for the crowd, I wouldn't care if it didn't actively hinder some matches. Like, there's nothing wrong with the tag title match but how much better could it be if people were reacting with the match, rather than shitting on it?

    Big believer that the heat in the old live crowd was a big part in making the shows so great, much like sport in an empty arena wouldn't be half as good.

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

  4. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prime Time View Post
    I mean, other than the gimmick, there's nothing really wrong with that. It's just sort of there. But then I believe you need those kind of matches and their demise has hurt the contemporary PPV.
    You talking about Cuban/Rich? Because I agree not every match needs to be a showstealer, but I feel like you should be able to do better than this. I remember thinking the match was a real stinker, personally!

  5. #85
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    We may be judging it by different criteria here. For me, if something maintains an illusion of normality and doesn't have me shouting bullshit at the TV, it's fine.

    It's not good by any means, but I didn't think there was anything actively wrong with it. It just sort of was a way to fill some time and to offer a contrast with the bigger matches, to make them more special.

    Rich was having some pretty good matches on the smaller shows in the summer, but people just weren't buying it at this point in his career.

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

  6. #86
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    I certainly wasn't during my TLS watching!

    True, it lacks anything aggressively stupid or world-breaking as you you'd be likely to see a decade later. I still stand by that it was a stinker, and the fact that a "real" sport would have stinkers too didn't comfort me a bit while sitting through it!

  7. #87
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    I guess that's the difference, for me a stinker is basically reserved for things that do break that world, either by design or lack of ability.

    As my antipathy to star ratings grows I'm basically doing everything as pass/fail now!

    And actually judged by that standard there's not a lot you can criticize the show for at all.

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

  8. #88
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    Sure, but by that logic every show prior to 1998 would pass! What's the fun if we can't complain about anything?

    Also, I can criticize any show that has Sid on it.

  9. #89
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    Man, criticise all you like, Sid was OVER..... Just listening to these crowds I get why everyone was desperate to run with the guy.

    I see your every show pre-1998 passing and raise you robocop....

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

  10. #90
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    Haha, you got me there with Robocop.

    Man, Sid sucked so much during that run though... do a move, stare at the crowd like a deer in the headlights, rinse, repeat. I won't deny how over he was, but really think it would have been a total disaster to run with him on top. He was over in the WWF right afterwards too, but failed to produce any worthwhile results and quickly flaked out to play softball (probably).

  11. #91
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    I think we may just have to accept that you're too far removed, and have too low an opinion of Sid, to see what people saw back then. I'd be willing to bet that people didn't see him as a deer in headlights and I'd suggest, humbly, that if that were a popular opinion he couldn't have gotten over in the first place. I remember having many a conversation about how he had one of the best looks and, at times, overall auras in wrestling. And I think there's just too much distance - and maybe even contempt - to ever see what we saw.

    That said, you're bang on the money about not running with him on top. He was never good enough for that. I maintain he was an asset and good enough to work with Bret and Shawn and people of that ilk, but he wasn't someone you wanted to make the centrepiece for more than a short spell. He was basically a special attraction.

    That said, the one exception to that also came in WCW, which I think was Sullivan's perfectly sensible idea to turn to him after the radicals defection. In an emergency situation, he had a look and legitimacy that made him a safe port.

    But in other occasions? Honestly I think his big WWF run where he feuded with Shawn was probably about as much as you could do with him.

    As for his 1991/2 WWF run, I wonder how he'd have done if they hadn't turned him. He was a big deal as a babyface but no one wanted to boo him. Remember how hard they had to work to keep Hogan babyface?!

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

  12. #92
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    I think that also had a lot to do with people being tired of Hogan! But I take your point, and I admit I'm a little hyperbolic when running down Sid. I'll also admit he's weirdly not nearly as bad as usual in that 99/00 run, he's still not very good but seems to put in a lot more effort, or maybe just all the years of experience finally paid off a little? I can understand why people give the guy a pass, at the very least.

    But I'm still pretty confident I could count his good matches on one hand and have fingers left over!

  13. #93
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    I suppose it depends on if you like his WWF matches with Bret and Shawn. I can remember four that I've enjoyed, which would give you a single finger left over at most, but if you don't like those then I doubt you could find many. I have a weird feeling in the back of my head that there's a good Jannetty match out there on a random RAW, but y'know, couldn't stipulate to that without going back and checking it out again.

    But yeah, I know of more good work from him later than this point. Here, it's just that classic thing of a big guy that people think can run through anyone he wants. And there's still probably another ten years or so from this point where that'll get you over.

    Kinda let this linger for a while but next up, now I've lost the weekly shows, is Clash IX, which I do know a bit already, mainly because of the Funk/Flair I Quit match.

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

  14. #94
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    I actually don't even really care for the Shawn matches, especially the supposedly good one that revolves around Jose Lothario drama. My favorite matches from Sid (such as they are) are in WCW. Benoit drags him to what I consider his best ever at Souled Out '00, he even takes some chops this time(!). There's also that '99 match where he blades spectacularly against Goldberg and it turns into this shocking bloody spectacle. What a bizarre time for him to peak as an in ring performer.

  15. #95
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    I was always under the impression that the 'good' one was supposed to be the Royal Rumble match. Always thought I was out on a bit of a lonely island with my appreciation for the Survivor Series match.

    I think it's fair to say that generally all Sid's best stuff comes in the last few years of his being an active competitor. He did always have a certain magnetism but I think it's no surprise that while no one ever went all-in on him early in his career, both of the major American promotions pulled the trigger on him as their world champion between 1996 and 2000.

    Anyway, the bit I'm into now, Flair has basically strongarmed his way into booking the show. I'm a bit put out that I can't see what these look like week to week because I've heard very, very mixed reports about Flair as a booker, and I always maintain that you can't really get a full sense of what people were like just from watching the big shows.

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

  16. #96
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    I think that's very true. Flair as booker never overly impressed me from what I've seen, he tends to rely on good people (that he's close with, usually) and some good stuff results but there's also plenty of stuff that really doesn't get attention or development under him.

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