Saturday, January 17, 2015

The Best of Sting Blu-Ray Thoughts

Hogan takes credit for Sting getting in the business, because of course he does. They've got a lot of clips from some 1995 pseudo shoot interview Sting did talking about his career. Sting was Flash, but they changed the name to Sting and we get hilarious clips of Sting making faces in a UWF tag match that was on the MSW set and didn't really belong there either. I think this was the same match - either way, it's simply awful as Rock (Hellwig) is barely able to do a choke. He does an okay bearhug though. Sting as Flash comes in and gets a big boot, while Joel Watts praises them for at least having basic tag team psychology down. Joel is a really underrated commentator because he gets everyone over and explains things logically - like a more exciting version of Larry Matysik. More choking from Rock. He tags Sting in, but Sting forgets the finish as Flash is setting up for what seems to be a Hart Attack with the same body positioning, but turns it into a bearhug before throwing him down, re-tagging Sting in, and they do the Hart Attack. Hellwig actually did a good job there because it was all Sting's fault that the finish went awry and he just kept doing what he knew to do.

We've got a shitload of matches that I've never seen before - including NWA Southern Pro Wrestling, which I've never even heard of, so it should be fun. Sting and Rick Steiner have Eddie Gilbert in their corner as they face Ron Simmons, who Humperdink calls a convict, and Mike Rotundo. Randy Anderson is the referee, and Dink alternates between using Rick Steiner and his real name. Rick is in pink and white long shorts and Sting's in basic blue tights with paint. Shasta Whatley is down there hugging Eddie. Steiner slams Rotundo, but Mike holds on with the armbar - I love that spot. Rotundo ducks a punch and Sting falls right into the corner, so he's green as grass. "The Sting" has a rat tail, and Dink is horrible on commentary. Sting lands right on his ass for a suplex from Rotundo. Good lord is Sting scary in there - he doesn't really know what to do in there at this point. Whatley's hilarious with bright blue trunks and a little pimp jacket on with a tophat, and Sting gets a cradle win on Simmons. I think this was in Florida, but wow was it ever bad.

Sting vs. Dutch Mantel seems fun. YES! TURBO CHARGED! Loved this theme. Sting is the World Heavyweight Champion here and the arena is darkened like it's Impact. Jim Ross talks about THE BLACK SCORPION and talks about the CA association between Sting and the Scorpion in '86. Sting's got an arm ringer on and he and Dutch kick each other's legs. The ring looks really dingy, and Ross says that Sting could scout Flair before, but he doesn't know his opponent. They're in the Cobb County Civic Center, which looks like a dump. Ross puts Dutch over as being well-read and a dangerous athlete. Sting yells out WE'RE WRASSLIN, WE'RE JUST WRASSLIN! for some reason. Sting gets an armbar, Dutch gets the ropes and Ross basically calls him a pussy for doing that and Sting just brings him in the middle - cheater. Ross talks about this being a huge chance for Dutch, who can achieve great things even off of a time limit draw because the idea of going the limit with the champion actually matters. Mantel gets thrown into the corner, but he sees Sting on the other side and bolts because he knows what's coming. Backslide gets the win for Sting. Flair, Windham, and Sid hit the ring. Pillman, Luger, and THE CANDY MAN BRAD ARMSTRONG are down to save.

Sting vs. Vader in a bounty match from a '92 Worldwide. I didn't become a fan of wrestling until '93, so all I've seen of this feud has been on tape, DVD, and the Network. I don't recall ever seeing this match before, so it should be fun - there's also a Sting-DDP match I'm curious about since it's from '92 and I've only seen DDP from '94 on. Sting's in red and black gear that I never remember him wearing - it's a good color combo for him. This is the blue apron, yellow, blue, and black ropes with bright white canvas that looks quite good. VADER KILLS HIM IN THE CORNER! YES! Sting fires back, but eats a combo to the head. STINGER SPLASH! Clothesline sends him down. Shortarm clothesline on the floor from Vader.

Belly to back mid-ring from Vader. Shotgun lariat from Vader mid-ring. Nasty. Sting goes for a sunset flip, but Vader, not being an idiot, sits on him quickly instead of waiting a thousand years and landing on his ass. Corner shots again and he gets the avalanche in the corner. Powerslam and a splash gets a 2.5 for Vader. Vader goes for a suplex, but Sting goes behind and gets a German suplex. God, I'd love to see Sting of '92 against Brock now. Sting gets a slam and a Superfly dive for 2. Missile dropkick from Sting! Vader puts him against the post and clubs him, but Sting moves from the bodyblock and Vader hits the post and loses via countout. Harley jumps Sting, but eats the Stinger splash and the deathlock before Sting dives onto Vader on the floor. THIS RULED!

Sting vs. DDP is from Saturday Night with the neon signs everywhere. DDP was so smart to get DDP over as his moniker as far back as the AWA because it gives him, even as an underneath guy here, a catchy name. He takes an awkward bump off a hiptoss after jumping Sting and then some armdrags. Ross and Cactus are on commentary. DDP's got leather pants, the singlet top, and a DDP weight belt - so he looks pretty good gear-wise. Sting eats a slam and gets one. DDP misses an elbow and Cactus demands that Sting show him something - GUTS! Dropkick and a facejam to DDP. Deathlock is on and wow was this quick. DDP was pretty good in '92 all things considered. Good bit on the face paint too with Tony Schiavone now talking about how Sting just did what he wanted with it and we get some vintage '95 or so footage of him applying it. Cherry-picking disc 1 was a lot of fun, and I didn't even watch the Muta match yet.

Disc 2 has a metric ton of content including many Blu-Ray-only promos - INCLUDING ONE WITH ROBOCOP. The whole Blu-Ray-only thing is bullshit because they just do DVD-5s for the three disc sets and save money there while scrimping on content - they used to use DVD-9s for them and while yeah, the Blu-Ray are a better product overall, the DVD packaging is really nice and folks shouldn't be shafted just for getting another format. There's a lot of late '80s/early '90s stuff I haven't seen here, so let's go with the BD-only promos starting with "Ric Flair of the '80s", then him winning a PWI award, imitating people, and "Horsemen Fever".

Sting's in black with the blue belt-type gear that always looked weird on him. Sting's in blue and red paint and say that 10 years ago, Flair was the man, but NOW YOU'RE LOOKING AT THE FUTURE. WOOOO! Yeah this was nothing. PWI thing. Holy Christ is Jim Ross's mic way too loud. Apter is representing PWI, but he's the most popular wrestler in the NWA - but not the whole business it would seem. Sting's in his formal white and black paint, shiny black jacket  and gigantic parachute dress pants. Thank God I have no memory of much of the '80s, but holy shit does this look awful. Apter gives out the wrestler of the decade award for Ric Flair. 3/4 of the building is lit well here. I think Flair's a face because he's not brutally attacking Sting immediately. Ric hopes the next 10 years are as good to him as the last 10 were. Well, he was in an asylum at some point here and buried in the desert too, so that didn't happen.

Sting's imitation deal is in front of a weird stone-style WCW logo that I've never seen before. He slept and saw green stuff, red stuff, wooing, arms, and legs, and there were clouds and what the fuck? Sting wants this to be reality. Wow. Ross talks about Horsemen Fever running wild in wrestling. Flair and his wonderful mullet talk about Sting, whose TEMPERATURE IS OFF THE SCALE ROSSY! Ross talks about Buzz Sawyer, Muta, and THE DRAGON MASTER! Sting is interviewed by Gordon Solie who says that THE HORSEMEN'S ATTACK ON STING WAS THE GREATEST SNEAK ATTACK SINCE PEARL HARBOR. Wow. Sting says that him beating Flair at Starrcade showed Ric that he needed him as an ally rather than an enemy, but now it's worse than it ever was. Ross meets with Sting after surgery, and the 100s of Little Stingers got him out of his depression. Sting says it'll be six months to a year, but he isn't going to listen to doctors, so it'll be less time. Ross says that Lex has slid into his spot and Sting says that doesn't like Lex right now, but he hates the Horsemen and hopes Lex wins it. ROBOCOP VIGNETTE! Robocop tells Flair to THINK IT OVER, CREEP. This was amazing.

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