Mega Powers Running Wild!

The legendary 'Macho man' Randy Savage teams up with 'The Immortal' Hulk Hogan to take on Ted Dibiase and Andre The Giant in the first ever WWF Summerslam!

Shawn Micahels vs. Mankind

The Heartbreak Kid defends the WWF Championship against Mankind in a thrilling main event at WWF In Your House: Mind Games.

The Birth of the nWo

From Hulk Hogan's shocking turn at WCW Bash at the Beach 1996 to the addition of Ted Dibiase, THe Giant Syxx and more, relive the very beginning of the New World Order.

Austin 3:16 Says I Just Kicked Your Ass

It's one of the most famous promos of all time; Stone Cold Steve Austin wins the 1996 King of The Ring and serves notice on all the WWF superstars. Check it out in our complete review

Wrestlemania 12 Review

The boyhood dream comes true as Shawn Michaels battles champion Bret 'The Hitman' Hart in a classic 1-hour iron man match. Plus, Diesel vs. Undertaker and more.

WCW Fall Brawl 1996 Review

Was Sting in cahoots with the New World Order? Would Lex Luger be able to get along with the Four Horsemen as they faced the nWo in War Games? Find out in this review

Thursday, 25 June 2020

Top 10 WCW Themes

As regular readers of Retro Pro Wrestling will know, we've spent the past few years reviewing every WCW PPV from 1996 onwards and are now getting through those ill-fated final months in the company's history.

Throughout all of that, we've heard many, many theme tunes. The good, the bad, and the so-bad-its-amazing (American Males, we're looking at you), but these -ladies and gentlemen- these are the best WCW themes to ever appear on our TV screens:

10. Hollywood Blondes / Steve Austin 



It's doubtful that there's a wrestling fan in the world who isn't familiar with the shattering glass and crunching guitar riff that makes up Stone Cold Steve's iconic WWF/WWE theme. Years before he began storming his way to ringside to the sound of that Jim Johnson classic, however, he and Brian Pillman swaggered their way to WCW rings with this scathing metal jam as their soundtrack.

Though some argue that the menacing sneer of guitars wasn't entirely suited to the Hollywood Blondes in the way that  Glass Shatters was suited to the Texas Rattlesnake, it was still a damn fine track all the same.

And yes, we'd remiss if we didn't mention the fact this got recycled many times over the years, being used for guys like Marty Jannetty, Greg Valentine, and whoever else was being trotted out to flesh out the midcard on Nitro. 

Still, even that can't take away how magnificent this theme really is.

9. Raven



Diamond Dallas Page's Self High-Five theme may have been WCW's most popular Nirvana rip-off, but let's be honest, the Jimmy Hart Version of Come as You Are was way more bad ass. 

Maybe it's the way that the main riff sounds somehow crisper yet heavier than the Kurt Cobain classic, or maybe it's that scorching solo. Whatever it is, there's something about this one that makes it a must-pick for any list of the best WCW themes ever.

8. Lance Storm


Confession time: The only reason I decided to write this piece was so that I'd have a chance to rave about how awesome Lance Storm's theme music was. 

Though most of his WCW run was squandered in disappointing feuds with Hugh Morrus General Rection and Hacksaw Jim Duggan, there was always something especially cool about hearing that kick ass guitar riff just before Lance delivered his trademark line, "If I could be serious for a minute."

Obviously, this was even better when he had Major Gunns by his side.

By the way, as an honourable mention, Chris Jericho's Pearl Jam rip-off theme could have easily made this list, but in the end, other themes stood out as being just far too iconic to leave off.

7. Eddie Guerrero




There really was nobody else quite like Eddie Guerrero. Unfortunately, the theme for his WCW babyface run, "Generic Rock Track #1837" didn't really reflect that. 

Then he turned heel, was gifted this glorious theme tune, and had kicked off the best part of his WCW career. 

The greatest thing about this theme isn't just that the sleazy bass and scintillating guitars sound so damn good together, it's that there's some intangible quality to this track that perfectly encapsulates all of his Latino swagger and unbridled cool.

After Eddie left, Jimmy Hart remade this theme for Chavo Guerrero and added a gorgeous guitar solo to it. That version was technically better than even this one, but since Eddie's version was the more memorable and iconic of the two, it gets the nod here.

6. Ravishing Rick Rude

There was a lot of things about WCW Slam Jam - The Music Vol 1, not least of which being the fact that we never technically got a volume 2. 

This was the album that gave us the famous babyface themes for Sting and The Steiner Brothers. It also that weird song about why Ricky Steamboat was such a great guy for being faithful to his wife.

However, none of those jams compared to this most 90s-sounding ode to the 6'2" of twisted steel and sex appeal known as Ravishing Rick Rude.

A total earworm in the very best sense of the word, when I first heard this album, I spent weeks afterwards singing that ever-so catchy refrain.

Now that we're revisiting the song for this, there's no doubt it'll be stuck in my head again for weeks.

Altogether now..

"He's simply ravishing, he's happening, he knows that he's cool // All the girls go crazy, they don't know what to do. // He'll steal your girl, break her heart and leave you a fool. // He's simply ravishing, dazzling ravishing Rude."

5. Sting



There were really two strong contenders for the number five spot. The classic Goldberg theme that has become as much a part of his whole presentation as his tattoo and Jackhammer, and this, the song Sting used after he started doing The Crow cosplay and hanging out in the rafters.

If you ask me, both tunes have a similar vibe to them, but there's something about Sting's haunting epic that sends chills down the spine in a way that Goldberg's theme never did. 

4. Hulk Hogan 


Again, there's a lot of options here. Do we go with that sweet hip-hop track Konnan recorded that was used for the Filthy Animals? Give some love to the rap-hating West Texas Rednecks? Or shout out Chris Jericho's Pearl Jam rip-off?

We could have done any, but in the end it comes down to this - the best track from the otherwise terrible Hulk Hogan and The Wrestling Boot Band album.



Though it's certainly not as famous as Real American, with its huge riff and a memorable hook, American Made is arguably the better of Hulk Hogan's two main babyface themes.

3. Harlem Heat


Some themes deserve to be a on a top-ten list like this because they sound amazing. Some deserve to be here because they're iconic. Harlem Heat's WCW theme is both. 

One of the few WCW themes to be still used today whenever Booker T puts in an appearance, this classic is both memorable and utterly enjoyable.

2. The Four Horsemen


I mean seriously, just listen to that lead guitar. Doesn't it just give you chills?

Though it wasn't used as much as say Ric Flair's classic theme or the individual themes of its members, The Four Horsemen isn't just one of the best WCW themes, it's one of the best things to come out of WCW, period.

An absolute gem of a track, it was really difficult not to put this right at the number one spot.

Alas, that honor had to go...

1. New World Order


The following announcement has been paid for by the New World Order:

This is hands down the best WCW theme ever.

Earlier, I mentioned that Harlem Heat got onto this list by virtue of being both awesome and iconic

The nWo theme (also known as the porno music) soundtracked the biggest boom in WCW's history, one that just so happened to give us the most exciting time ever to be a wrestling fan.

Plus, as a mashup of multiple Jimi Hendrix, it gave us some scorching riffage that was just...too...sweeeeeeeeeeeeet.

Disagree with these picks? Let us know in the comments below or dive into the discussion on the Retro Pro Wrestling Facebook page. 

Alternatively, check out some of our other wrestling theme reviews below:

Thursday, 18 June 2020

PPV REVIEW: WCW Mayhem 2000

WCW Mayhem 2000 - event poster
November 26, 2000,
U.S. Cellular Arena, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

In November 1999, World Championship Wrestling ditched their annual World War 3 PPV in favourite of a new event called Mayhem. 

Created to tie in with the launch of the WCW Mayhem video game, that show featured a tournament to crown a new world heavyweight champion after the previous champion, Sting, was stripped of the title due to stupid booking decisions.

12 months down the line, that stupidity was still very much evident in WCW.

Sure, the year 2000 had started optimistically for the Atalanta-based organisation, but by the fall, the company was in a bigger creative and financial mess than ever before.

Don't believe me?

Just check out Mayhem 2000 to see what an absolute disaster World Championship Wrestling was in its final months.







Earlier today...

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Stevie Ray, Tony Schiavone, and Mark Madden called the show
In a break from the norm, WCW Mayhem 2000 began not with the usual opening video, but with a flashback to earlier in the day when both WCW World Heavyweight champion Booker T and number one contender Scott Steiner had arrived at the arena in anticipation of their big showdown later on the evening.

Booker T was all smiles as a group of bad actors pretending to be fans surrounded him and begged for his autograph. Scott Steiner, however, was...well, he was Scott Steiner, which meant he was angry, unhinged and generally a law unto himself.

As he entered the arena, road agent Fit Finlay handed him a pen and asked him to sign in at security. Instead of doing that, Steiner produced a baseball bat from nowhere and smashed the security table -including two laptop computers- to pieces.

We then got a brief introduction from Tony Schiavone before the obligatory opening video finally arrived.

Mayhem /ˈmeɪhɛm/ (noun): violent or extreme disorder; chaos.

Said video interspersed variation definitions of the word 'mayhem' with a look at our key matches tonight - Goldberg vs. Lex Luger, Kevin Nash and Diamond Dallas Page vs. The Perfect Event, and, as we'd already seen, Booker T vs. Scott Steiner.

Returning to the arena, Schiavone greeted us once again with a Thanksgiving reference the likes of which you'd only ever hear on a professional wrestling show:

"You've seen the family, you've had the turkey, now get ready to bash some heads live.."

Right you are, Tony.

WCW Mayhem 2000 - WCW CEO Ric Flair called the shots
Nature Boy is in the House

In a storyline I've somehow completely forgotten about, a short-haired Ric Flair had become the World Championship Wrestling CEO.

Before any of the action, we were shown a pre-broadcast promo from the Nature Boy in which he addressed the crowd and promised and promised everyone lots of great matches.

World Championship Wrestling Cruiserweight Championship
WCW Cruiserweight Champion Mike Sanders vs. Kwee-Wee (w/ Paisley)

About twenty seconds later, Flair's promise was immediately broken.

I try not to use too many curse words in these reviews, but sometimes reviewing WCW makes me want to drop F-Bombs all over the place. that's how frustrating their booking decisions can be.

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Kwee Wee w/ Paisley (Sharmell) challenged Cruiserweight Champion Mike Sanders
Back in the glory days of the cruiserweight division, you could always guarantee that, no matter how much crappy wrestling and ridiculous overbooking took place later in the card, the cruiserweights would always deliver a solid, no-nonsense opener.

Those days were long gone.

Kicking things off, Mike Sanders took to the microphone and called Kwee-Wee a biatch, earning himself a royal ass-kicking from the challenger.

Not long after, Sanders' allies, The Natural Born Thrillers all descended en masse and attacked Kwee-Wee. This prompted Paisley (who, for the record, looked stunning), to go backstage and bring out Meng of all people. The Tongan badass attacked the Thrillers, which brought out Ric Flair and a bunch of security guards. This whole chaotic scene -mayhem for sure- completely distracted from whatever was going on in the ring.

Like seriously...why not just let the two men have a f***ing wrestling match?

When all the carnage had dissipated, they did at least try to do that, but it was too little, too late. Sanders vs. kwee-Wee had started off pretty good, but, post-fracas, it was dull and uninteresting.

Sanders won. Whatever.
Your Winner and Still WCW Cruiserweight Champion: Mike Sanders

Backstage, Ric Flair told Mean Gene Okerlund that unless a wrestler or manager was directly involved in a match on tonight's show then they wouldn't be allowed "on the floor." In other words, there'd be no interference for the rest of the show.

I'm willing to bet this doesn't last long.

Backstage Shennanigans

WCW Mayhem 2000 - The Boogie Knights struck a deal with Kronik to get their help
Across the hall, Alex Wright and Disco Inferno paid Kronik for precisely seven and a half minutes o their time to help them win a match against Billy Kidman and Rey Mysterio Jr.

We then cut to another pre-recorded promo in which Okerlund interviewed Jamie Noble and Evan Karagious. Okerlund told us that the two men had formed a team out of necessity, but Karagagious was more interested in saying "North Cackalacky" a lot and dry humping thin air, pretending to be some kind of playboy. It was cringe of the highest order.

The joke here was that he and Noble came from the same place and Karagious once dumped Noble's sister or something. I don't know, the whole thing was too horrible for words.

Elsewhere in the arena, Hardcore Champion Crowbar had a new pimp daddy gimmick and was seen strutting backstage with two honeys and a cane.

My goodness, reviewing this show is going to be hard work.

Three-Way Tag Team Match
3-Count (Sugar Shane Helms & Shannon Moore) vs. The Jung Dragons (Yang and Kaz Hayashi w/ Leia Meow) vs. Jamie Noble and Evan Karagious

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Leia Meow accompanied The Jung Dragons for their match against 3 Count and Noble & Karagious
We hadn't seen Leia Meow on PPV since Starrcade 1999 when she accompanied the reunited Varsity Club as their cheerleader, but man, did she look good here.

Fortunately, she wasn't the only good part of this match.

3-Count (now technically 2-count) started the match by cutting a promo about Evan Karagious having a small penis. That was embarrassing, but the rest of the match was nothing but a pure thrill-ride from start to finish.

If you want expert psychology, old-school logic and a Triple H-styled epic, this isn't the match for you. If you like watching a bunch of dudes flying about the place and dolling out the creative offence by the truckload, you might love this.

Sure, it was essentially an eleven-minute spot fest, but it sure was fun.

3-Count won the match, but that wasn't as important as WCW proving that they were capable of giving us a straight-up wrestling match with no stupid and unnecessary extras.
Your Winners: 3-Count

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Mean Gene Okerlund interviews Jimmy Hart about his match with Mancow
Sadly, WCW wasn't capable of giving their 'tween-match segments any time to breathe.

Within the space about 90 seconds, we got no less than four segments, all of which came across as meaningless.

  • In the back, Bam Bam Bigelow had put That 70's Guy Mike Awesome through a table - Sergeant AWOL came to his rescue but then just stood over a prone Awesome
  • Pamela Paulshock interviewed Boogie Knights and Kronik. Kronik reiterated that they would only help Alex Wright fight Rey and Billy for seven and a half minutes, a fact we'd just established ten minutes ago and had no reason to repeat.
  • Backstage, The Natural Born Thrillers discussed something and Reno agreed to do something. This whole thing was moving so fast that I didn't even note what that something was, nor do I care at this stage.
  • Mean Gene Okerlund interviewed Jimmy Hart about his upcoming match with Mancow. God, not this again. Hart had a cast on and was claiming to be injured. Okerlund quipped that Hart's cast was as real as Major Gunns...I'm guessing he meant her hair colour.

Jimmy Hart vs. Mancow (w/ his entourage)

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Mancow was a thing
They did this back at Spring Stampede 2000 and it was awful, so why they felt the need to do it again is beyond me.

Things started with a rambling, nonsense promo from the Mancow thing. At one point, he started talking about interviewing Goldberg then trailed off mid-sentence and called Mark Madden a fat piece of s**t instead.

Jimmy Hart then came down, still feigning injury.

Not surprisingly, the whole thing was a set-up. Hart blasted Mancow with his crutch and got beat down by the radio personality's henchmen.

This brought out 3-Count because f**k the 'no interference rule' that had just been established 30 MINUTES AGO.

Mancow ended up winning. Everybody who had to sit through this atrocity lost big time.
Your Winner: Mancow

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Pamela Paulshock interviews The Filthy Animals
More rapid-fire backstage stuff:
  • Mike Awesome got put on a stretcher. Pimp Daddy Crowbar checked on him
  • Lance Storm was talking to Bam Bam Bigelow but we couldn't hear what they were saying
  • The Misfits in Action were backstage, bemoaning the no interference thing which clearly didn't matter anyway. Ric Flair came in and asked for a private word with Sgt. AWOL
  • Pamela Paulshock interviewed The Filthy Animals who noted that Konnan wasn't with them because he'd scored with two women the night before. They didn't need him anyway for their match against Alex Wright and Kronik.
I'm honestly starting to think WCW 2000 is bad for my mental health.

Three the Hard Way for the World Championship Wrestling Hardcore Championship
WCW Hardcore Champion Crowbar vs. Big Vito vs Reno

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Crowbar, Big Vito and Reno battled in a hardcore title match
At Souled Out 2000, WCW had promoted a four-way hardcore match which they dubbed 'four the hard way.'

It was kind of dumb, but at least the play on words made sense.

Now, many months later, they were running a three-way match which Mark Madden told us was called a a "three the hard way" match. Honestly, even the Yapapi Indian Strap Match laughed it's ass off at what a stupid name "three the hard way" was.

Hardcore matches were usually highlights of the WCW undercard.

Though they were never going to set the world on fire, you could normally rely on this division to deliver some wacky, over-the-top fun.

That wasn’t the case here.

Instead, what we got was a mess of a bout in which all three men took turns hit to me each other with random objects.

At one point, Crowbar and Reno decided to team up on Vito but either forgot the spot they were supposed to do or...well, I have no idea what they were supposed to be doing, but it looked as though they just stood in the middle of the ring holding hands with him for a while.

It was really weird.

The non-action eventually spilt backstage where some girl called Marie begged Reno not to hit Vito. This allowed Crowbar to smash Reno with a chair and retain his title.
Your Winner and still WCW hardcore champions: Crowbar

Backstage:

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Mean Gene interviewed The Cat and Miss JonesBuff Bagwell went looking for something. He laughed his ass off the whole time but the audio was terrible so who knows -or cares- what that was about?

Kevin Nash was so concerned about his upcoming match that he sat around casually reading GQ magazine. As he did so, his partner, DDP mumbled something about somebody being ‘s**t outa luck’ and gurned at the camera as if he were Jim Halpert.

Dirty Old Man Mean Gene Okerlund tried to get into Ms Jones’ pants and claimed she needed a shot of ‘Vitamin Gene.’ Okerlund was there to interview The Cat, who promised that if he lost to Shane Douglas, he would kiss The Franchise’s feet and leave the country for seven days.

Handicap Match
Kronik (Brian Adams & Bryan Clarke) and Alex Wright (w/ Disco Inferno) vs. The Filthy Animals (Billy Kidman & Rey Mysterio Jr. w/ Tygress)

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Brian Adams locks Kidman in a full nelson
This was dumb.

If you paid Kronik for seven and a half minutes of their time, wouldn’t you have them work the whole seven and a half minutes to destroy your opponents and then pick at the scraps once the damage was done?

Not Alex Wright. The dancing buffoon kept tagging in so that he and Disco were paying Adams and Clarke to do nothing.

Eventually, time ran out and the former Crush and Adam Bomb left, leaving Wright to get his ass beat.

The match itself wasn’t bad,  but that was some strange booking.

The sole highlight for this writer was Tygress. The former Nitro Girl joined the commentary team and proved -as she had done on many a PPV around this time- that she was one of the few female performers in the company with any personality.
Your Winners: The Filthy Animals

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Mean Gene interviews Steiner and Midajah
Backstage, we got another completely unnecessary segment with the Natural Born Thrillers. Mike Sanders promised his men that he would ‘set it off,’ whatever that meant.

Elsewhere, Mean Gene interviewed Scott Steiner with Midajah’s enormous breasts in the background.

Okerlund told us that a straight jacket would be hanging above the ring in tonight’s main event while Steiner boasted that he performed best when out of his mind and that most people couldn’t function at his level of insanity.

Steiner was off his nut and was all the better for it.

Shane Douglas (w/ Torrie Wilson) vs. Ernest ‘The Cat’ Miller (w/ Miss Jones)

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Shane Douglas faced The Cat
Douglas had cost Miller his WCW Commissionership back at WCW Halloween Havoc 2000 and thus they had a match tonight.

Though it wasn’t terrible or anything, it just felt like mid-card filler.

The best part about it was getting to see Torrie Wilson and Ms Jones, both of whom looked stunning.

If you don’t remember Ms Jones, she was the former Nitro Girl who hit headlines earlier this year for plagiarising a teacher’s masters’ project.

The Cat won. It was ok but also kind of blah.
Your Winner: The Cat

Backstage, Jeff Jarrett found his guitars smashed to pieces on the floor and asked two members of the production crew who had done it.

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Pamela Paulshock interviewed General Rection
The two men first said that they didn’t know, but then in the very next breath said it had been Buff Bagwell.

Elsewhere, Pamela Paulshock interviewee General Rection and The Misfits In Action about their rivalry with Lance Storm and Team Canada.

Rection was fired up for his final match with Storm, but the biggest pop went to Corporal Cajun for calling Major Gunns a bitch.

Apparently, after being forced to accompany Team Canada to the ring for a while, Gunns had developed Stockholm Syndrome and joined their cause, even after Rection had set her free back at Halloween Havoc.

Also, there was a promo for the return of Glacier which Mark Madden laughed at and basically told us was stupid.

Speaking of stupid...

Bam Bam Bigelow vs. Sgt. AWOL

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Bam Bam Bigelow faced Sgt. AWOL
This had originally been scheduled to be Bam Bam vs. Mike Awesome, but as everybody not named Ric Flair knew, Awesome had been taken out by Bigelow earlier in the show.

Before the bell, the Beast From The East announced that since Awesome couldn’t compete, he was declaring himself the winner via forfeit.

Flair, however, had other ideas. The CEO came out and said he had a ‘suspicion’ that Bam Bam had something to do with Mike Awesome being taken out.

I mean, we only saw it live on the show Ric, how much more proof do you need?

That stupidity aside,  Flair then revealed AWOL as a replacement for That 70’s Guy.

What followed was a dull, lifeless match in which nothing much happened.

At one point, they brought out a table, but the match was so boring they didn’t even bother to use it.

Bammer won with Greetings From Asbury Park.
Your Winner: Bam Bam Bigelow

Post-match, Bam Bam acted seriously hurt. Officials and EMTs spent several millennia tending to him and putting him on a stretcher.

Cervical D*cks

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Mean Gene interviewed Buff Bagwell
Backstage, Buff Bagwell wielded a broken piece of a Jeff Jarrett guitar and bragged to Mean Gene Okerlund that he had foiled Jarrett’s plan to beat him.

Gene, meanwhile, was more interested in likening Bam Bam’s kayfabe neck injury to the very real one Buff had suffered back in 1998.

Buff talked about this but goofed up, intending to say ‘cervical disk’ but instead saying ‘cervical d*cks’ and making the crowd laugh at him.

A promo video for Storm vs. Rection followed. That match was next.

World Championship Wrestling United States  Canadian Championship
WCW Canadian Champion Lance Storm (w/ Major Gunns) vs. General Rection

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Lance Storm w/ Major Gunns
These two had met at the previous month’s Halloween Havoc, with Rection finally beating Storm for the title and bringing the ever-gorgeous Major Gunns back to the MIA camp.

That had been a perfect and logical way to end that story, but this was WCW, where perfection and logic didn’t exist, and so we had to have one more match between the two.

As Lance Storm did his usual pre-match heel promo, the EMTs continued to wheel Bigelow out on a stretcher. This proved to be nothing more than a cheap way to keep Bam Bam at ringside so that he could get around Flair’s rule that you were only allowed ringside if you were competing in a match.

Bigelow lept from the stretcher and attacked Rection on his way to the ring, a move that didn’t go down too well with the audience.

The rest of the match was fine, but, like many others on this card, there wasn’t much to get excited about unless you count Major Gunns.

Rection won thanks to the big moonsault, but it was a really anticlimactic way to end both the match and the feud.
Your Winner and NEW WCW US Champion: General Rection

Backstage, Mike Sanders tried to convince Doug Dillinger to send the security team home. Dillinger didn’t seem too interested in doing so.

A promo then followed for what would prove to be the final ever WCW Starrcade.

Jeff Jarrett vs. Buff Bagwell

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Jeff Jarrett battled Buff Bagwell
Jarrett cut a pre-match promo in which he claimed not to care about Buff smashing up his guitars because he always came prepared with a backup plan, essentially giving away the ending of the match.

He also tried to call himself a ‘superstar’ but flubbed his line and called himself a ‘stupid star’ instead. The crowd crapped on him so badly for the gaffe that you could tell it completely threw him off and he ended up cutting the promo short.

The resulting match was OK, but for two men of Bagwell and Jarrett’s calibre, it should have been much better.

Things went back and forth several times getting predictably better until Double J predictably pulled a guitar from under the ring and smashed it over Bagwell’s head for the win.
Your Winner: Jeff Jarret

There was also a David Flair run-in during that match, but it was so uninteresting that I forgot to mention it.

A promo video for the tag title match followed. That was next.

World Championship Wrestling World Tag Team Championship
WCW World Tag Team Champions The Perfect Event (‘Perfectshawn’ Shawn Stasiak & Chuck Palumbo w/ The Natural Born Thrillers) vs. Kevin Nash & Diamond Dallas

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Shawn Stasiak and Chuck Palumbo (w/ The Natural Born Thrillers) defended the tag team titles against Kevin Nash and DDP
Mike Sanders revealed that he’d gotten himself and the Natural Born Thrillers jobs as WCW security to get them out to ringside but this didn’t last long.

A few minutes into the match (which started with a loud ‘WE WANT HALL!’ chant from the crowd) Flair came down and sent the NBT packing. Sanders was allowed to stay because he had a manager’s license.

I say license. It was a cheap bit of paper that said ‘WCW: OFFICIAL MANAGER’ on it and looked like the sort of thing you might find in a child’s ‘Let’s Play Wrestling’ playset.

The match itself proved to be the best thing on the show so far, not amazing by any stretch, but a really good effort that blew everything else on the card (with the possible exception of the three-team spot fest) completely out of the water.

Nash and Page won, but it was Shawn Stasiak and Chuck Palumbo who worked the hardest.
Your Winners and NEW WCW Tag Team

Backstage, Pamela Paulshock interviewed Lex Luger. If I’ve learned anything recently, it’s that it was WCW law that if Paulshock interviewed you, you had to insult her.

Honestly, I feel bad for the girl.

Sticking to the rules, Luger called her a crap interviewer but then stumbled over his words and looked like an idiot.

The Total Package was angry that Goldberg had cost the pair of them an opportunity to compete for the world title and vowed to kick some Goldbutt.

Lex Luger vs. Goldberg

I hate to sound repetitive, but this was OK and nothing more.

Not a bad match as such, but they did nothing interesting and the crowd didn’t care at all.

Honestly, when you’ve got Goldberg in a match and the crowd are silent, you know you’re in trouble.

Near the finish, Goldberg went for a spear but Luger pulled referee Mickey Jay into harm’s way.

Rather than any shenanigans going down, however, Goldberg immediately planted Luger with the jackhammer. Another referee came out and this one was over, making the ref bump totally pointless.
Your Winner: Goldberg

After a brief video, it was onto our main event.

Straight Jacket Cage Match for the World Championship Wrestling World Heavyweight Championship
WCW World Heavyweight champion Booker T vs. Scott Steiner (w/ Midajah)

WCW Mayhem 2000 - Booker T defended the World Heavyweight Championship against Scott Steiner in a straight jacket cage match
This was undoubtedly the best match of the night, though let's face it, there wasn't much competition for that honour.

Both men went all out to deliver the best performance they were capable of, even if the addition of the straight jacket did slow things down a lot.

Steiner recovered the straight jacket -which had been hanging from the cage roof- but Booker threw him to the mat and murdered him. Steiner was completely out of it. So out of it that he could have easily have been pinned. So out of it that Stevie Ray on commentary was practically screaming at his brother to make the pin. Booker, however, decided to use the straight jacket instead and spent about half an hour trying to put it on, Steiner.

He eventually did so, but didn't strap the arms together or anything, so he might as well have put a T-shirt on Steiner for all the good it did him.

The battle continued and Steiner found a way to fight back, eventually locking Booker in the Steiner Recliner.

Instead of doing the spot where the man having the move applied to him struggles to hold on for dear life but eventually passes out, Booker's selling let him down and he immediately passed out the second the hold was applied.
Your Winner and NEW WCW Champion: Scott Steiner

Post-match, Steiner took Booker out with a chair then blasted the referee too.







If you value your sanity, don't watch WCW Mayhem. World Championship Wrestling had produced some hot garbage in their time, but this show was right up with the very worst of the very worst.

The three-team spotfest was fun, the tag team title match was decent, and the main event was as good as you were going to get from WCW in this time period but still, do yourself a favour and avoid this one like the plague.





For other year 2000 pro wrestling reviews see:
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Thursday, 11 June 2020

PPV REVIEW: WWF No Mercy 2000

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Event poster
October 22, 2000
Pepsi Arena, Albany, New York

From late 1997 until November 1999, there was no hotter star in professional wrestling than Stone Cold Steve Austin. 

One of those rare performers who transcends the medium while still retaining a devoted following among the hardcore audience, Austin's run as 'The Guy' was on a level not seen since the heydey of Hulk Hogan.

In fact, you could probably argue -and find statistics to back you up- that Stone Colds popularity even dwarfed that of The Hulkster.

So it was a credit to Vince McMahon and the World Wrestling Federation's creative efforts that the company had continued to flourish in the eleven months that Austin had been on the shelf.

With the former multi-time champion on the shelf, The Rock had moved from being a close second to being the number one man in the promotion, while the likes of Triple H, Kurt Angle, and Chris Benoit had also kept the WWFs main event scene burning bright.







Tonight, however, the Rattlesnake was back.

Would he be able to return effortlessly his throne as the undisputed king of the lawless jungle that was the WWF, or would he have to fight to take his spot back from those who had claimed it in his absence?

Let's head to the Pepsi Arena to find out as No Mercy 2000 comes live from Albany, New York.

Stone Cold Steve Austin is Out For Revenge

After a year off, Stone Cold Steve Austin had finally returned to the World Wrestling Federation at Unforgiven 2000 and promptly set about trying to discover who ran him over back at Survivor Series 1999.

Between then and now, The Texas Rattlesnake had learned that the culprit was none other than Rikishi who, as we all know, did it for The Rock.


In tonight's opening video package, Austin swore to get revenge on his assailant, promising no mercy on him when the two locked up later tonight.

Austin's promo was interspersed with clips of him in the ring, and of rabid dogs barking at chain link fences. As opening videos go, it wasn't the greatest, but it was still pretty compelling.


With that over, we got the usual pyro, crowd shots and welcome from Jim Ross who, along with Jerry 'The King' Lawler, was ready to call all the action.

The Dudley Boyz Invitational Tables Match
Too Cool (Scotty 2 Hotty & Grandmaster Sexay) vs. Low Down (D'Lo Brown & Chaz) vs. Tazz and Raven vs. The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray & D'Von Dudley)

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Chaz and D'Lo Brown competed in The Dudley Boyz Invitational Tables Match
The best way to describe this gauntlet-style, winner-stays on elimination match is that it was a good idea poorly executed.

Two teams began, and when one team was eliminated, the next team came in until only one team remained.

Too Cool and Low Down kicked things off, which really made you feel for D'Lo Brown.

For the past few years, the former European champion had been one of the most entertaining mid-card acts in the company and had become one of this writer's favourite performers from the time period.

However, he really hadn't been the same since the horrific Darren Drosdov incident and hadn't appeared on WWF PPV since Wrestlemania 2000. Even then, he'd been reduced to performing as The Godfather's mini-me and was now mostly a lower-card afterthought.

So it was no surprise when he and former Headbanger Chaz got taken out by the ever-popular Too Cool, nor did it come as much of a shock when Scotty 2 Hotty and Grandmaster Sexay were eliminated by Raven and Tazz, setting up an inevitable ECW showdown with The Dudley Boyz.

More predictability followed.

Since it was their match, Bubba Ray and D'Von naturally took out Raven and Tazz, then got the better of Right to Censor's Goodfather and Bull Buchanan, though not before a pointless false finish. Bubba put Bull through a table, but the referee was knocked out, so Goodfather was able to pull his partner out of the way. When the referee woke up, he saw Bubba lying on a broken table and called for the bell.

A moment later, a second referee came out to explain what had really happened. The match was restarted and, one quick 3D later was officially over.

As I say, it wasn't a bad idea in theory, but in practice, it just came off as bland and predictable.
Your Winners: The Dudley Boyz

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Trish Stratus with T&A
Backstage, Test, Albert, and Trish Stratus joked about how they were going to use Trish’s big boobs to distract Farooq and Bradshaw later on in the show.

I’m not making that up.

Across the way, Riksihi brandished a sledgehammer as he stalked the backstage arena in anticipation of Steve Austin’s arrival.

Back in the arena, King and JR told us why T&A were at odds with the APA.

It all stemmed from a backstage poker game between the two teams. T&A had run out of money, but Trish came to the rescue of her men by stripping down to her undies. It was then strongly implied that she showed them her hooha, distracting Farooq and Bradshaw so that Test and Albert could attack them.

Add Stratus’ arch-rival Lita into the mix, and we had ourselves a six-person intergender tag match.

When T&A Attack

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Lita was attacked before her match
Well, we were supposed to, but Trish, Test and Albert had other ideas.

The men assaulted the APA backstage and dumped some huge cases on them. By this time, WWF Women’s Champion Lita was already in the ring.

When she set off to find out what had happened to her partners, she was blocked by T&A and attacked by Trish.

All three heels then proceeded to give Lita hell until her buddies The Hardy Boyz came to her rescue.

Got Nuts?

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Edge and Christian talk to Lilian Garcia about their nuts
Backstage, Lillian Garcia interviewed Edge & Christian. The duo had previously claimed to have food poisoning as a way to get out of the earlier Dudley Boyz table match.

The pair thought said poisoning had come from some bad nuts they’d had at the movies the night before, but apparently, that wasn’t the case.

As you can probably imagine, this was just a chance for Edge and Christian to make as many jokes about their nuts as possible.

Elsewhere in the arena, Rikishi continued to wait for Austin.

Steel Cage Match
Chris Jericho vs. X-Pac

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Chris Jericho beat X-Pac in a cage match
With the notable exception of Bret vs. Owen at Wrestlemania 10, steel cage matches very rarely lived up to the hype.

Fortunately, this one did.

Before the bell, Chris Jericho took to the mic, rechristening the cage as a ‘Y2-JAIL’ and vowing to settle his long-running feud with X-Pac once and for all.

The two then locked up and gave us a really solid bout with plenty of high spots, the highlight of which saw Jericho slap Pac in the Walls of Jericho at the top of the cage before being thrown all the way down the canvas.

At that point, X-Pac looked to have the match won, climbing to the outside and standing atop the cage door. Before he could drop to the outside, however, Y2J dropkicked the cage, causing the former DX man to crotch the door, much to the delight of the crowd.

Jericho then climbed through the door and this very fun cage match was all over.
Your Winner: Chris Jericho

Backstage, Rikishi continued to wait for Stone Cold.

He approached Mick Foley’s makeshift office, where the WWF Commissioner insisted that, while he would be willing to declare ‘Kisihi the winner via forfeit if the Rattlesnake no-showed, he had every faith that Austin would arrive.

Billy & Chyna Reunited

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Billy Gunn and Chyna reunited to face Right to Censor
Having last teamed up back at Fully Loaded 1999, Bad Ass Billy Gunn and Chyna were once again a team and were set to take on Right to Censor here tonight.

A flashback told us that this match came about when Billy Gunn’s scheduled Intercontinental Championship match against Chyna’s ex, Eddie Guerrero, was cancelled due to a Guerrero injury.

For reasons that weren’t made entirely clear here, Eddie had formed an alliance of sorts with Steven Richards and Val Venis, making them a logical substitute.

Right to Censor (Steven Richards and Val Venis) vs. Bad Ass Billy Gunn & Chyna

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Right to Censor faced Billy Gunn and Chyna
Like the earlier gauntlet match, this was a rather bland affair with very little to get excited about.

Pre-match, Steven Richards cut a convincing promo, insisting that Right to Censor would never hit a woman unless they had to.

Tonight, he said, they had to. As such, he and Val were looking forward to taking out Chyna and her “rectally-obsessed” partner, Mr Ass.

That promo was the best part of this otherwise mediocre match which ended when Eddie Guerrero ran in and drilled his former Mama Cita with a lead pipe disguised as a bouquet of flowers behind the referee’s back.

That gave the RTC the opportunity to make the cover and pick up the win.
Your Winners: Right to Censor

Watching the action in the dressing room, Triple H was approached by his wife, Stephanie McMahon.

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Triple H & Stephanie McMahon
After Hunter refused to let her accompany him to the ring for a match with Chris Benoit, the McMahon heir handed her man a tape of The Crippler applying his patented Crossface which she assured him would be ‘very interesting.’

Paying little attention to it, The Game warned his missus that if anything happened to her as a result of her ‘business partner’ Kurt Angle facing The Rock tonight, he would put the Olympic Gold Medalist out of action for good.

Elsewhere in the arena, Riksihi looked set for battle, dressed in his ring gear and traditional Samoan attire and brandishing a sledgehammer.

The announcers told us that his match with Austin was next, and we got another look at the rivalry between the two men before the actual match took place.

No Holds Barred
Rikishi vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Stone Cold Steve Austin destroyed Rikishi in a no contest match
At this point, we were only an hour into a show in which Austin/Rikishi had been promoted as the only bout on the card that mattered, yet here we were already.

Much like he had done against  The Rock way back at D-Generation-X: In Your House 13, Stone Cold drove his pick-up truck right down to the ring and proceeded to stomp a mudhole in his nemesis.

Make no mistake about it, this wasn’t a match. This was Austin getting revenge on the man who tried to permanently incapacitate him by beating him down to within an inch of his life.

Sure, ‘Kishi got the occasional blow in, but Austin no-sold all of them and then went right back to his murder attempt.

Eventually, Austin killed Rikishi with a chair and dumped him in the back of his truck.

He then drove him outside, dumped him against a brick wall and was all set to murder him for real until a police car showed up.

Stone Cold rammed headlong into the police car, prompting about eight million more of them to show up.

The Rattlesnake was arrested and this utterly enthralling non-match was over.
No-Contest

Afterwards, the policeman who had been driving the car Austin ran into was taken out in an ambulance while Rikishi lay, battered and bloodied, on a grass verge.

World Wrestling Federation European Championship
WWF European Champion William Regal vs. Naked Mideon

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - European Champion William Regal faced Naked Mideon
Having ditched the ‘Real Man’s Man’ gimmick, William Regal had returned to the World Wrestling Federation in September 2000.

 Here, he made his first WWF PPV appearance since Survivor Series 1998 and his first appearance on any PPV since his cameo in the Hardcore Invitational Junkyard Battle Royal back at WCW Bash at the Beach 1999.

Before the match, Regal announced that  Commissioner Foley had given in to his demand that Naked Mideon wear some clothes for the match.

As such, the challenger came to the ring wearing an Undertaker tank top and those press-stud popper pants that were so popular in the 90s, so you knew some Naked Mideon nekkidness would take place at some point.

Sure enough, after a mostly decent throw-away match, the former Godwin stripped down to his thong and fanny-pack and drove the crowd into a frenzy.

His naked butt was enough to make Regal think twice about applying the Regal Stretch on him, but it wasn’t enough to help him win the match.

The champion hit a Regal Cutter and scored the fall.

The match was kind of entertaining for Regal’s always-excellent mannerisms, but the wrestling wasn’t much to write home about.
Your Winner and Still WWF European Champion: William Regal

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Kurt Angle edited together a fake interview with The RockUp next, we were shown the classic ‘Kurt Angle interviews The Rock’ promo in which the Olympic Gold Medalist edited together clips from several of The Rock’s past interviews to make it look as though the WWF Champion was admitting to behind Rikishi running over Steve Austin.

It was so amazing that even The Rock himself couldn’t help but smirk as he watched it on a backstage TV.

At least, he did before he turned the TV off and walked away.

Si, Senor

Backstage, Kevin Kelly interviewed The Conquistadors about their upcoming tag team title match against The Hardyz, and about the rumours that they were really just Edge & Christian in disguise.

To all of Kelly’s questions, the 80s jobber team could only reply ‘si, senor.’

It was pretty funny.

World Wrestling Federation Tag Team Championship
WWF Tag Team Champions The Hardy Boyz (Matt & Jeff Hardy) vs. Los Conquistadors (Conquistador Uno and Conquistador Dos)

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Edge & Christian disguised themselves as 80s jobber team Los Conquistadors
If this was the original team consisting of José Estrada Sr. and Jose Luis Rivera, then this would be the first PPV appearance since Survivor Series 1988, but, of course, it wasn’t.

It was Edge and Christian, using the old gimmick to sneak their way into a title shot after it had been ruled that they would no longer be allowed to compete for the titles.

The match wasn’t the best Hardyz/E&C encounter we’d ever get, but the Conquistadors gimmick did make it very entertaining in its own right.

Towards the end, Matt Hardy ripped off Dos’ mask only to reveal another mask underneath. Uno then hit an Unprettier to claim the tag team titles.
Your Winners and NEW WWF Tag Team Champions: Los Conquistadors

Outside the arena, Steve Austin’s truck and the police car he’d destroyed were both taken away by police. Meanwhile, in the locker room, HHH studied the tape that Stephanie McMahon had given him and apparently saw something he liked.

This led to a video package explaining the rivalry between Helmsley and Benoit. In a nutshell, the evil Benoit had headbutted Steph and then cost HHH a title shot against The Rock.

The two would meet next.

Chris Benoit vs. Triple H

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Triple H battled Chris Benoit
A hard-hitting, high-impact, all-out war, this was probably the best match Triple H had up to this point that wasn’t against The Rock.

Everything they did looked great, made sense, and told a compelling story.

That story was Pedigree vs. Crosssface, with both men having seemingly figured every possible way to counter or prevent their opponent’s finisher.

Stephanie McMahon got involved near the finish, but even that didn’t detract from what was otherwise an exceptional contest in which both men genuinely brought out the best in one another.

After an epic battle, HHH finally nailed the match-winning pedigree.
Your Winner: Triple H

Backstage, Los Conquistadors were congratulated on their big title victory by none other than Edge and Christian themselves.

For some completely unknown reason (since they clearly hadn’t just competed in a match), E&C were tired and sweaty as they handed the tag champs celebratory bottles of Corona and said that they looked forward to challenging for those titles on Raw the following evening.

I might be wrong, but I seem to remember that the Conquistador who was supposed to be Christian was actually played by Christopher Daniels.

No Disqualification Match for the World Wrestling Federation Championship
WWF Champion The Rock vs. Kurt Angle (w/ Stephanie McMahon)

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Kurt Angle defeated The Rock to win his first WWF title
A pre-match video told us that Stephanie had agreed to be Angle’s business associate and accompany him to the ring all the time after Triple H had banned her from his corner due to her being "a liability."

As the duo made their way out to the ring, Howard Finkle announced that it was now a no-disqualification match much to the surprise of the commentators who genuinely seemed taken off guard by the last-minute stipulation.

The champion then made his way out, and what we got was your typical WWF main event drama. I mean that very much as a compliment.

Nobody did main events quite like the World Wrestling Federation, and this was a perfect example of that. Though the earlier HHH/Benoit match may have technically been better from a pure wrestling standpoint, this was still a very, very, very good sports entertainment match that delivered on all counts.

That's even considering the couple of run-ins we had.

At one point, Stephanie got involved and ate a Rock Bottom for her trouble. Unsurprisingly, this brought out her husband who proceeded to attack both men, Angle for putting his wife in harm's way, and The Rock for causing said harm.

Angle even scored a near-fall after Hunter nailed the champion with a Pedigree, but that wasn't enough to end the match.

More gripping action followed before Rikishi made his way out. Wearing a bandage and wearing a mask of dried blood, he looked like he'd been through hell and back but was still out to help The Rock.

Not that he succeeded. On two separate occasions, he tried to hit Angle, missed, and planted the champ instead. Kurt then drilled Rikishi with an Olympic Slam, pinned The Rock, and won his first WWF Championship.
Your Winner and NEW WWF Champion: Kurt Angle

Afterwards, Angle raced from the ring so fast that Earl Hebner had to chase him down with the title belt. Holding the gold aloft, the new champion proceeded to drop to his knees and weep in such a way that you weren't sure whether it was part of his gimmick or whether he was genuinely overwhelmed.







What started off as a lacklustre show soon turned into a contender for one of the WWF's best efforts of the year. Outside of the Jericho/X-Pac cage match, the undercard was very underwhelming, but from the tag team title match onwards, everything got progressively better, culminating in two of the very best professional wrestling matches of the year 2000 and Kurt Angle's big moment.

Having debuted the previous year at Survivor Series 1999, Angle's rise had been nothing short of meteoric. From a nothing-feud with Steve Blackman in late '99 to the World Wrestling Federation Championship in less than a year, the Olympic Medalist had spent the time in between being the first man to capture the European Championship, the Intercontinental Championship, King of the Ring and now the grand prize in under 12 months, a feat which would begin establishing his status as one of the greatest of all time




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Retro Pro Wrestling

New reviews of classic WWF/WWE events recalling every moment from Wrestlemania 1 - 30. You'll also find reviews of WCW, ECW, TNA and the occasional indie event, along with a look at old school magazines, merchandise and more.