Sunday, December 21, 2014

WCW Starrcade 1992

Well, the plan was to cover the 1990 Survivor Series with the Wayback Playback audio, but I only have parts 2 and 3 and my copy of part 1 is bad, and I can't find the audio for them even in the Pat McNeill section of the Torch VIP site. Starrcade '92's audio is fine and boy is the thumbnail weird - they cropped out tons of faces. I didn't get an ad before, but I got one now for Hulu Plus. How very odd. Pat puts this show over as being huge history-wise. We get a rundown of graphics from all the Starrcades minus a couple of them, which is still a massive bump in production from just a year ago. The graphics look far better, minus Pillman's name being over Barry and vice versa. We get a CG king of cable ring that looks quite good. Rude faces Simmons tonight and we get clips of Chono and Muta in NJPW in Mutoh gear for tonight. WCW was a mess at the time with multiple crews and a recent show at that time with Sting not there, Simmons not there, and Rude out hurt. WCW drew in Baltimore and Atlanta, where this event is. Jesse has a Malcolm X hat on due to the movie.

We throw to a WCW Magazine special report - Rick Rude, THE WORLD TITLE CHALLENGER, can't work the show and Dr. Death gets the shot. Bill Watts has the book here, shockingly. They go to the locker rooms with some shitty plastic orange chairs, ala any lunch room. BILL WATTS IS IN THE RING WITH HANK AARON. Holy shit. Sting's out with a mix of black and blonde in his hair. It's silly, but not too bad here. Pat running through Watts's Torch talk while censoring it is hilarious. Larry is with Missy's tits. The lighting is so great now - there's a giant light rig over the ring. Van Hammer is out with a white denim jacket, mirrored trim, and silver leather pants.  Dan Spivey looks 50 and is in just in trunks, which isn't complimentary for him. Yup - there's a reason Spivey wore a shirt in the WWF after this run. Cactus Jack is out teaming with Johnny B. Badd. Cactus is downright slim here. Hammer's corner shots to Cactus are a sight to behold. CACTUS IS POKING HIS CHEST - HA! Big leg hits from Hammer - he had a good legdrop. Badd's in with red and gold gear and eats an elbow for 2. Nice pair of smooth armdrags from Johnny here - far better than the rana that has him brain himself. Big hiptoss from Cactus to Hammer. Spivey comes in and lariats Jack down. Nice nip up from Hammer out of a headscissors from Jack. Bossman slam from Spivey hits Badd nicely. He took a flat belly bump for it years before Abyss did. Bearhug. Hammer gets a back suplex for 2. Jack gets 2 off an elbow. Cactus gets a clothesline. This is just moves here. Badd tries to break up a cover and elbows Jack. Badd punches him, Hammer schoolboys Jack and wins. Dan has absolutely no definition in his upper body - it's amazing.

Dustin draws Vader as a partner. Kensuke Sasaki is chosen, but he's not in the locker room. The Barbarian teams with him. Oh boy. Sasaki's in the black and yellow gear he always has in Fire Pro. Barbarian's in his Powers of Pain getup here and still ripped. Basic lockups here. Vader slams Barb down. Big bodyblock from Vader sets up the corner shots. Barb takes him down with lariats. Hart Attack from Vader and Dustin - nice. Barb back suplexes him for 2. Sasaki comes in to work with Dustin. Dropkick to the gut as Sasaki came down off the top. Vader gets the bodyblock to Sasaki off the top. Sasaki dropkicks Vader and gets a snap suplex! Dustin kneelifts and dropkicks Barb. Barb knocks into Sasaki and Dustin gets a schoolboy win - so 2 schoolboy wins in 2 matches here. Vader and Race attack Dustin. Super Brawl III - THE BIGGEST EVENT OF THE YEAR! So why buy another show then?

Back to the bingo deal. Barry teams with Muta against Scorpio and Pillman. Barry's kinda fat here. Brian has a denim shirt with patches all over it. Muta's in blue. So many guys working twice here. Barry bullies Scorpio down with a double wristlock suplex. Barry even past his prime, is so smooth. Muta spins for some kicks with Scorp. Muta's red paint clashes here. Rollthrough into a cartwheel and then a dropkick from Muta to Pillman. Great sequence. Pillman and Barry work and they do a fun headscissors sequence where Barry kicks his way out. Chest slaps and chops here. More with Muta and Pillman leading to Muta getting a big spinkick. Scorpio's back in with Muta. Big splash is countered by Muta with some knees. Barry comes in after a combat roll from Muta and cold-cocks Scorp. Muta's back with the POWER DRIVE ELBOW! Scorp gets a pop-up spinning legdrop that starts as the Vader bomb and then does the spin into the legdrop. Barry gets the impaler DDT. Muta moonsault gets an iffy 3 with Scorp getting a shoulder up and Pillman coming in, and the moonsault missing largely too.

Sting's partner will be Dr. Death and they'll face Erik Watts and Liger. Boy is one of these things ever not like the others.Liger has his red, white, and black gear here - which he's still wearing almost literally to the day I write this as this gear just got torn up on an NJPW World show. Watts has the biggest trunks on ever even in a match with Dr. Death. LIGER-STING and they're all over the place here. This is really fun to watch. Doc's working with Liger, so it's kind of like AJPW vs. NJPW. Weird to see a junior in there with a definite heavyweight, but it works. Watts is in with Doc - I think Erik's trunks might be on loan from Doc. Watts has Spivey's physique. Watts gets a crossbody and 2. Doc chops him. Liger blind tags in and Watts leaves awkwardly. Liger chops Doc, but eats a clothesline. Sting gets the bodylock backbreaker and runs him into the buckle. Sting eats a sunset flip for 2. Doc chops the fuck out of Liger and then chucks him into the ropes. Sting clotheslines Liger down for 2. Sting misses the Stinger Splash in the corner. Doc comes in and drills Liger. Kneeling armbar from Doc to Liger. Sting's back in and gets a half-crab on Liger. Doc chokes Liger on the ropes and gets some forearms and a backdrop driver that gets 2 from Sting, oddly. Sting gets a delayed suplex for 2. Liger gets a face jam! Watts OVERPOWERS DOC! DROPKICK FROM WATTS! Watts gets the STF, but thankfully Doc's in the ropes. Watts goes in for a crossbody and eats a hotshot for the win. Pat talks about the gas station angle with Watts causing a controversy at the time. Chono vs. Muta is up next, but first, we hear from Larry and Tony about some stuff - not really sure what as I've got the audio on 10% so I can hear the Torch stuff.

We get some extended clips of Chono-Mutoh, and it's pristine footage too. Pat impersonating Lumbergh talking as Watts asking the NJPW guys to tone it down a few shades amused me. Very basic matwork. Chono's in his white and purple getup - I never liked this design for him as it's too plain, like Sasaki's gear. They briefly go to the floor and are now mid-ring with a knuckle lock. After a century, we get to a basic armbar from Chono. Basic legwork. There's nothing really bad here, but it's meandering. Armdrag exchange. Chono goes up, gets caught and eats a superplex. Crowd pops for that, so clearly doing very little paid off here because it stood out. Muta Lock is in deep. Muta eats a snap suplex. Muta gets the spin kick. Jesse talks about Chono going to the floor being like a QB going out of bounds to avoid more damage. Handspring elbow! Double down after each goes for a dropkick. Snap back suplex from Chono. Dropkick misses and Chono gets the STF. Unlike Cena, or Erik Watts, it's on super-tight and Chono wins. There would be a rematch at the Tokyo Dome for the 1/4 show. I like Chono kind of kneeling on the STF - it looks so much more damaging that way.
Jesse and Ross talk about Rude, who could also lose his U.S. Title. Rude is out in the most '90s denim jacket ever. It's acid-washed and wow. Rude's really intense, and it's clear that if this Rick Rude was around in the WWF, he'd have been a legit main eventer - but he really was just perfect for this setting. WCW World Title match is up here MID-WAY THROUGH PART 2 of 3. Wow. Literally, it's a mid-card title. Doc's out first in his white and red robe. Doc's logo is awesome. Ron's out in yellow, black, and white which doesn't look good. Doc and Ron shake hands. Ron's gear has PRIDE on the side in giant Miami Vice logo text. Grinding side headlock on Ron. Tackle exchange. Duel three point stances lead to Pat and Jim talking about Doc being the last UWF Champ for Watts and and the only one for Abrams. Boy, imagine those coke parties. Arm wringer from Ron to Doc. Ron lets it go and then turns it into headbutts to the arm. They face off mid-ring and exchange punches. Ron's got fantastic intensity in his shots. Ron gets the face jam for 2. More arm work. Hammerlock slam. Doc avoids a flying shoulderblock off the top and hits some stomps. Doc attacks the knee on the apron. Dropkick to the gut from Doc leads to a half-crab that never quite looks right. Standing partial crab leads to Ron punching out of it. Doc gets a side leglock, which I never remember him doing. Doc stomps the knee and now he kicks it.

Doc does the hop up on the rope bit. Doc hops around and it leads to Ron hitting some jabs again. Eye rake stops that followed by a lariat and a weird cover for 2. Doc gets a half crab/bow and arrow thing. Front knee clip from Doc leads to another and a third leads to him eating a lariat. TOSS THAT MOTHERFUCKER THROUGH THE EARTH SPINEBUSTER hits! Three point stance tackles into the knees now! Third was one too many for him too as Doc ducks and sends him to the floor. Double countout here with them brawling on the floor. Or maybe it's just Ron, since Doc's halfway in. Doc eats the post on a powerslam attempt. Doc jumps him with a lariat and a calf branding and Doc gets a visual pin. So Doc looked great here.  Ron wins via DQ due to an ass-whipping after the match - WHAT A CHAMPION!

They hyped up SUPER BRAWL SUNDAY, more with Tony and Larry. We get a recap of Barry taking out the NWA and WCW Tag Team Champions Shane and Ricky. Windham and Brian are out. Barry's jacket looks like it's off-the-rack, ditto Pillman's, just with more patches. Shane and his shiny fringed jacket are something else. Steamboat's got his pussy-whipped theme here. He's a family man, who does the best he can. He helps little old ladies across the street, delivers papers to neighbors, and so on. Steamboat and Shane do forearm bumps...wow do they just have no chemistry. Basic wrestling exchanges from Shane and Brian. Big chops and punches in the corner from Brian. Crucifix into a sunset flip from Pillman doesn't work. Chop fires up Shane a bit, so Pillman goes for the eyes. Shane dropkicks Pillman to the floor. Double dropkick to Barry following with a double backdrop. Shane is ripped here, and not all bloated like he was in ECW. He was either bloated due to roids or fat, or both at times. Great Steamboat-Barry stuff even with Barry going through the motions. Shane's in and wow do things die down a bit.

Barry counters a headlock with a back suplex. Shane threw a great punch. Steamboat's back for a neck snap. Barry bumps over the top for a clothesline. Shane slams Barry on the ramp. Steamboat chucks Barry back in and swinging neckbreaks him. Shane gets a chinlock on Barry after a tag. Brian comes in and kicks at Shane. Chokes him too. Chops in the corner from Brian. Punches and a dropkick send Brian into the barricade. Barry slaps his chest on the mat to revive him - nice bit there. Shane goes up top and eats a dropkick sending him right to the floor - fantastic bump there, and right on the concrete. Damn. Building looks so cheap with a variety of colors on the tile. Shane's got bits of debris on his back. Barry punches Shane square in the jaw.

Brian gets some cheap shots on the floor to Shane. Barry boomerangs him into the bottom rope. Shane bumps on the floor and barricade, ouch. Steamboat runs wild with a chair and now Barry's gear is covered in stuff too. Pillman gets a back suplex and 2. Love Brian doing it again, but holding the tights and hoping it changes his fortune. Barry punches him off the top and hits a slick back suplex for 2. Shane takes a fantastic bump for a forearm shiver where he sits into the bottom rope and then lies on the ropes and ramp. Slick suplex from Pillman gets 2. Pillman and Barry do a double choke while the ref is distracted by Ricky. Barry goes for a suplex and it gets reversed, setting up a hot tag spot and Shane punches and falls into a tag. Steamboat runs wild with slams. Barry hits a powerslam. Pillman tosses Steamboat over the top behind the ref's back and Barry posts him. Steamboat shoulders Pillman in the gut and then climbs up for a springboard chop for 2! Great chop exchange. Pillman gets 2 off something. Barry's in as a bully. Steamboat's selling is fantastic. Barry goes for a diving chop and Ricky avoids it and superkicks him. Brian's in and Ricky falls into a tag. Shane slams the heels. Ricky and Barry go over  to the ramp and Shane hits the belly to belly for the win. The belly to belly does with the snap and the belly-bump landing actually works well, and it was better than Shane using it in ECW where it was just bizarre and he mainly did it overhead. King of Cable hype for Sting-Vader, so it will be their second of three matches along with Barry. THREE MATCHES in one night - what a depleted roster.

The King of Cable purple and gold logo is fantastic. WCW's graphics are better here than they ever were before and rarely as good as this after. Vader has a giant bandana on. Vader's parading around with the trophy before the match, so he's probably not winning. Pat talks about how Vader was really stiff, but he lightened up for Sting and was told he didn't need to kill him because he'd make him look good - so he changed things up a bit and had his eyes opened by it. Sting's got "Turbo Charged" here. I like Sting wearing the worn-down paint here. Sting starts off with a fantastic jab and cross combo. Vader slams him down. Bodyblock to Sting takes him down. Vader gets him in a gorilla press and just chucks his throat into the ropes and does it again. I love these two - their chemistry is perfect. Sting's on the floor and man does the floor look cheap - it's all uneven and dirty-looking. Sting gets a running coppo kick and a dropkick! GERMAN SUPLEX FROM STING TO VADER! Clothesline sets up a Cactus-style clothesline from Sting sending them both to the floor. Plancha to both Race and Vader, who comes up COVERED IN SHIT BECAUSE OF THE LACK OF MATS. Race has to dust himself off too. Vader hits his murderous corner shots. Sting fights back and goes for the Stinger splash, but eats a boot. Sting boots him and gets a DDT and then a super DDT for 2! Sting gets the death lock and Vader gets the ropes. Vader goes to the floor and Sting misses a stinger splash on the barricade.

Sting nearly gets counted out. Man did Race fit Vader so well as a manager. He looked tough, was tough, and he fit in with Vader. Big bodyblock in the corner to Sting. Vader rears back for a punch and Sting gets more distance. Vader gets 2 off a splash and pulls him too far causing that count. Kneeling chinlock turns into a grounded abdominal stretch. Vader then turns into a kneeling lariat, and a stiff one, for 2. Shortarm lariat is ducked and leads to a backslide for 2. Sting goes for sunset flip and Vader misses the butt drop. Sting back suplexes Vader, but Vader covers for 2. Vader clubs him in the corner. A lot. Sting bounces around the ring and bumps to the other side of the ring - nice touch. They fight on top and Sting punches him off a superplex attempt. Vader gets up first again. More corner shots. Sting's begging for more shots, but he's covering up to wear him out. He's tired, so Sting attacks with punches. HE FINALLY TAKES HIM DOWN WITH A SHOT and the crowd pops. Iffy Samoan drop from Sting works for me since it sells how big Vader is. Superfly dive hits, but he doesn't hook a leg and Sting gets 2. Sting goes after Race and eats a shot. Big chokeslam from Vader. Vader gets a big splash off the second rope, but he flies and can't cover. Vader flies off the top, but eats a mid-air powerslam and loses! This was fantastic and has held up very well - this is the only match from the show I've seen before, and it's amazing. It really should've closed the show - instead, we get the Battlebowl. Replay shows that Vader's right shoulder is up through the whole thing. Jesse puts this over as a hell of a match. They do a crowd shot and put a spotlight RIGHT ON A SECTION WITH NO PEOPLE and then pan down from there to Tony and Larry. Oh wow.

They're going to talk to someone about the making of the Battlebowl ring. Tony meets with Paul Hornung about the importance of a ring, so they compare it to the Super Bowl ring. Paul talks about this almost like the streak, where it got bigger and bigger with each year almost by accident. Guys come down to kill some time. Paul did a great job actually putting wrestling over without really doing anything to call it a sport. Sting and Vader brawl on the ramp. Pat talks about how Sting has been in three matches here on this show, which is more than he might have in WWE. Well, I'd have him do 'Mania, and then if he's okay and healthy, do one at each "big" show, with one at Summerslam, one at Rumble, and then another at Mania. Guys doing...stuff... Muta kicks Barry's ass. Pat buries the Rumble mode in games - well, he's not wrong. Sting goes for a sleeper on Vader. Hammer's out. Doc back suplexes Vader. Somone was knocked to the ramp and that's an elimination. Sting and Vader fight to the floor too. These guys are morons. Barry, Dustin, Muta, and Doc are the final 4. Muta gets a spinkick to Doc. Muta and Doc are doing stuff in the corner. Barry goes up top and Dustin slams him down mid-ring. Dustin DDT's him down. Doc lariats Barry and himself out. More idiots! Barry's nose is busted up. Barry gets a floatover suplex and punches him. Barry superplexes Muta leading to a nice standing dropkick. Muta skins the cat and dropkicks him down before dropkicking Barry out. Pyro goes off and apparently scares Muta. A fan in the back behind the commentators hold up wacky smartass signs. The graphics break up badly during the credits.

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