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WCW 1994 BLOGJECT: 1/29/94

by on March 25, 2011

This week, they promise a big TWO AND A HALF SUPERSHOW with all of the fallout of the Clash of the Champions! Who won the elimination tag? Who’s the commissioner?  Who wears the chicken suit? What color headband will “Jungle” Jim Steel wear?!?!??!?!

(Note: This seems to be the beginning of an era, as Bobby Heenan made his debut at the Clash and was now doing color commentary on Saturday Night, replacing Jesse Ventura.)

Click under the jump for more…

PRETTY WONDERFUL (Paul Roma & Paul Orndorff) vs TERRY TAYLOR & ERIK WATTS
-Erik Watts used to stand awkwardly. I know that’s nitpicky, but he seriously would go into a fighting pose like he was pooping his tights.
-We’re seriously over a minute into the match without one tag on the good guy side, and all that Erik Watts has done are drop toe holds.
-Heenan just insinuated that Taylor and Watts practiced double-teaming while weight-lifting.
-Unique spot I’ve never seen before where Roma slammed Taylor to reverse a wristlock, Taylor took the bump but didn’t sell it and switched it to a front armbar while Roma stood there, selling it.
-It’s weird seeing Taylor selling for the heels while taking all of his Ric Flair Big Lots-brand bumps.
-Erik Watts threw freakin’ GREAT punches. He also threw a solid dropkick that I’m sure, while he was up in the air, he was flipping off the Shenunamake Post crew or whoever else would heckle him for sucking, going back to the infamous Starrcade ’92 dropkick.

-Orndorff ended up pinning Erik Watts by giving him a knee in the corner (there was the Assasain’s DREADED PIECE OF PAPER in the kneepad).
-Solid match. Between this and the Regal match from a couple of weeks prior, while Watts had some talented guys to carry him, he was really developing into his own after the rough start. It sucks he never got a chance to show his development beyond the rest of this run and the Tekno Team 2000 stuff in the WWF.

Brian Pillman, Sting and Dustin Rhodes cut a promo on the Equalizer and Harlem Heat for one of the main events this weekend. Sting threatened to kill a man with a crossbody, I think.

All three commentators (Tony, Bobby and Gene) shoot to a clip of Pillman/Col. Parker from the Clash. Tony looked SO uncomfortable while Heenan and Okerlund did their WWF schtick.

“Stunning” STEVE AUSTIN (w/ Col. Parker) vs BRADY BOONE
-If you haven’t listened to Episode 18 of the podcast with Rob Naylor, Brady Boone is awesome. He was a light heavyweight guy who was one of the first guys doing the Japanese high-flying and the karate kicks on WWF or WCW TV (he did jobs for both).
-He even did La Magistral (pictured below) where Austin obviously had no clue what Boone was doing, so he just stayed on all fours until he got the clue.

-Austin’s doing one heck of a job putting over Boone’s high-end offense. He’s selling far more than a guy who had been working with the top babyfaces regularly on TV really should’ve.
-Just as I say that, Boone tries a sunset flip out of the corner and fell right on his nose. Looked brutal.
-Austin DESTROYS poor Boone with the Stungun for the win.
-It was a fun match for Boone’s ahead-of-its-time offense, but definately not without its miscommunications.

CONTROL CENTER!

-They bothered buying Gene a desk and a green screen. This looks worlds ahead from the previous week’s “let’s set Gene in front of the tape machines” attempt to rip off what the WWF did with these segments.
-Gene claims that there are big announcements for Superbrawl forthcoming on this week’s episode. Why not just do the Control Center THEN?
-It was weird that Paul Orndorff was in the Thunderdome six-man tag at Superbrawl with Rude & Austin, considering he was getting the big tag push with Paul Roma and he didn’t have an issue with anyone on the face side.
-They blow the finish to the tag title match on this week’s episode by announcing the Nasties/Cactus Jack & Maxx Payne title match for Superbrawl.
-Gene teased the story on a Nasty Boys/Missy Hyatt split after the Clash for the Hotline (which was weird since she was with them on this episode of the show). Whoever wrote his verbiage for the spot (“Did Missy have a FALLING OUT with her duo?”) had a sense of humor, considering the reason she left.

Gene’s now at the interview set with Steve Austin (who still looks worn out after his match) and Col. Parker, who cuts one HELL of a promo on the concept of not wearing a chicken suit.

VADER (w/ Harley Race) vs.  CHRIS NELSON

-Poor Chris Nelson.
-Jim Cornette would be A-PISS’ at Vader for not snapping his head back while no-selling Nelson’s punches.
-Heenan: “Nelson should’ve learned something from his older brother…you know, Half Nelson.”
-You can tell Heenan isn’t familiar with this new crew, considering he was claiming Vader was “just giving Nelson some love taps, not even trying to hurt him” when he busted out the infamous open palm strikes in the corner.
-Vader wins. Duh.

-Harley Race is standing by with Gene. Harley claimed that January 27 was “90 days from the Starrcade” in December. Me thinks Harley did one too many flying headbutts. Vader offered to hump Ric Flair’s wife after he kills him in Thunderdome. I dig it.

We go to “somewhere backstage” where Nick Bockwinkel’s holding a press conference with Ricky Steamboat and Arn Anderson sitting at the table, in what had to be Anderson’s first appearance since the Sid stabbings. Nick Bockwinkel being so well-spoken made him a great Jack Tunney-type, but you could tell, like Heenan, he needed to learn the product, considering he referred to Starrcade as “the Clash of Champions”.

Vader busts into the room, being all Vader-like, after Bockwinkel announces the postponement of the Vader/Flair Thunderdome match at Superbrawl. Vader starts trouble with Steamboat as Flair magically appears in the melee (apparently he was there the whole time, but off-camera). Oddly enough, even though Flair was there, the whole mess seemed to revolve around Vader and Ricky Steamboat to set up a match there.

HARLEM HEAT (Kane & Kole) & THE EQUALIZER vs STING, “Flyin'” BRIAN PILLMAN, & “The Natural” DUSTIN RHODES
-It sucks that there’s SO much TV that WWE has to produce that they can’t do big tag matches as Pay-Per-View main events, just for the cool warm-up matches they could do on TV. Imagine John Cena, Randy Orton, and Daniel Bryan against Zack Ryder, Primo and Dolph Ziggler. That would be awesome.
-It’s amusing how easy the transition was for Dave Sullivan from being a Bruiser Brody ripoff to being mentally handicapped.
-I mentioned it last week, but it really is stunning how athletic Stevie Ray (Kane) was in 1994, considering what he became even a couple of years later.
-While I can put Stevie over for being in good shape, he absolutely is not a good actor. They did the criss-cross spot where the babyface tags out, then the heel keeps running and gets blown up…and Stevie completely no-sold it.
-Booker T. (Kole) was either the worst spot-caller in the world or needed to warm up his hands, judging by this spot.

-The faces are getting the heat on Stevie Ray in a way, but they’re being clever and doing lots of fast tags so the fans stay behind them since they’re being exciting and not doing any sort of cheating (or even using the five-count to their advantage). They’re just going over and over and over again on wristlock variations.
-This is exactly how you get over a team for a match like this. The babyfaces sell just enough to get a little bit of sympathy and give the heels credibility for when they (the faces) beat them, but dominate the majority of the bout so that people who buy the Pay-Per-View know that they’re going to see two good teams wrestle in this top match.
-That all being said, you can tell this type of match is better for TV purposes than for the live crowd, since they had to pipe in absurd-sounding canned heat.
-The good guys win with a cool combo of moves, where Pillman dropkicks Equalizer, Sting gives him the Stinger Splash, then shoves him right into a Dustin bulldog.
-Good match that served its purpose of making me want to see this team at Superbrawl.

Gene Okerlund is backstage, trying to confront Col. Rob Parker while he’s attempting to leave the building. Parker gets sent back inside the building by the Boss. You see, the Boss is a cop, and cops make you abide by the law, or something.

“Jungle” JIM STEEL vs BOB COOK
-Bobby, in his first night on the show, immediately gives the WWF lawsuit bait when, while speaking about the last segment, he says, “The Big Bo…that big goof”.
-Steel was a bad wrestler, but at least he was creative. He ripped some tinsel off of the entrance, so he jazzercised with it on the ropes.

-If Bob Cook’s son, who I know reads wrestling websites, ever reads this: I’d LOVE to interview your dad for “Mike & Tom Present…”
-Steel wins in seconds, like last week, with the Steel Trap (Thesz Press pin).

Gene Okerlund’s in the crowd, looking VERY amused with himself over big HOTLINE RUMORS…

After the commercial break, Gene is in the ring with Brian Pillman and his chicken suit. Col. Parker comes out to tease putting on the suit…but from behind, Tex Slashenger, Shanghai Pierce and Steve Austin jump Pillman. The locker room practically clears upon this grave chicken suit misjustice to make sure Col. Parker is left by his lonesome…

I hate to sound like certain people who cream over old wrestling because of people acting silly and getting great heat for it, but Col. Parker was AMAZING in this segment. It was absolutely like watching a human cartoon getting dressed. The best part? The SUIT DIDN’T FIT!

They finish it hot, as Pillman makes Parker dance the Funky Chicken. This segment was everything right with silly pro wrestling antics.

They preview next week’s show, which looks AWESOME, with Arn Anderson’s return, Terry Taylor versus Steve Austin, and Lord Steven Regal versus Sting.

“Beautiful” BOBBY EATON vs THE BOSS
-How depressing must it have been for Bobby Eaton to have to come out to the Midnight Express music, having to remember back to a time where he was in a good spot?
-It’s SO weird to hear the commentators say “World Wrestling Federation” (Heenan hyped his WCW Hotline segment by saying that he was going to reveal why he left the World Wrestling Federation).
-Of course, no one brought up Eaton & Boss’ past (Boss, as Big Bubba, was the Midnight Express’ bodyguard before his WWF run).
-WEIRD edit, as Bobby Eaton sent Boss into the corner, they cut to this shot:

…then Boss and Eaton are on the floor fighting.-Boss works a hammerlock pretty impressively, first by straight-up punching Eaton’s elbow joint, then wrapping Eaton’s arm around one knee so he could drop the other knee on the arm repeatedly.-Boss wins with the Bossman Slam. Pretty decent match where, amidst a little bit of weirdness based around the edit, there were some GREAT punches thrown and some shockingly good mat wrestling shown by Boss.

Boss is with Gene Okerlund. With these two together, Gene talking about him being a correctional officer in Cobb County, and Boss talking about his uniform in detail, it blows my mind that the WWF didn’t sue sooner.

Pierce’s Mask on the Line: JOHNNY B. BADD vs SHANGHAI PIERCE (w/Tex Slashenger)
-The stereotypical cowboy music that WCW used for these guys and for the 1996 Bunkhouse Buck/Mike Enos tag team was pretty awesome.
-Heenan kind of has a good, legitimate point, about how this match is stupid since Pierce put up his mask but Badd put up nothing.
-Tony: “It could be anyone in that mask!” Bobby: “Nope. It couldn’t be me or you!”
-It’s interesting that WCW had the guts to have their commentators go on TV and push the point home that their pay-per-view main event (which was still happening) was postponed for two months for an angle.
-This is some of the loudest crowd reaction I’ve ever heard for a mediocre match.
-Badd wins with a hurricarana where he rips the mask off as they go down.
-Bobby Heenan’s reaction to the unmasking: “Hey…I know him! That’s TEX!”

World Tag Team Titles: THE NASTY BOYS (Knobbs & Saggs, w/Missy Hyatt) vs. 2 COLD SCORPIO & MARCUS BAGWELL (w/Teddy Long)
-To show how awesome 1994 is, these people were chanting “WHOOP THERE IT IS!” at the Nasties:

-2 Cold Scorpio might’ve broken boundaries for African-American wrestlers. I can’t think of many black wrestlers before Scorpio who didn’t do the hard head gimmick.
-Scorpio doing the standing moonsault must have blown people’s minds back then, considering people went NUTS just a few years earlier for Muta doing it off of the top rope.
-Between this match and the match last week, the Nasties have really shown great ability for being bumping, stooging heels.
-Scorpio took a CRAZY bump over the top rope, kidney-first onto the apron that I wish I would’ve been able to either screencap or rip the footage of without it looking like garbage.
-When this match broke down, they did a spot where Bagwell went nuts and ran around the ring to tackle Knobbs off of the apron, stopping the Nasties from cheating after repeated illegal moves. It came off as an attempt to harden up Bagwell’s ridiculously soft image.
-They did a hot false finish where Knobbs legdropped Bagwell during a pin attempt on Saggs, so Scorpio did a slingshot splash at the VERY last second to break it up.-Bagwell ended up fisherman suplexing Knobbs, but the referee was distracted by Missy Hyatt on the apron, so Saggs broke it up and the Nasties ended up winning. The crowd was WHITE HOT at this point and, though we would’ve had to have gone without the great Nasties/Jack & Payne series, I wonder if the Center Stage heat would have translated to a pay-per-view crowd if they had decided to pull the switch and put Bagwell and Scorpio in the Superbrawl match. They would’ve had RIDICULOUS momentum coming off of how hot this ending was.

Gene Okerlund ends the show at the interview set with Vader & Harley Race. Vader in the mask and his slummy street clothes always amused me…

I wanted to smack Gene for just doing wacky annoyed faces while Vader was freaking out with a chair in hand.

So anyway, this episode had some gold on it. The main event had the crowd up on ridiculous highs, Eaton/Boss was a really fun little match, the six-man was fun for the concept they went in with, and the chicken suit segment was great wrestling ridiculousness.

However, like I said earlier, next week’s show should kick every other show’s butt I’ve seen so far. That line-up looks ridiculous. But, until then…

-TOM.

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