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

Showing posts with label Vampiro. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Vampiro. Show all posts

Thursday, 10 October 2019

PPV REVIEW: WCW Mayhem 1999

WCW Mayhem 1999 - Event poster
November 21, 1999
Air Canada Centre, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

To give WCW credit, when they went with an idea, they really, really went all the way with it.

When they created the nWo, they recruited half the roster to the black & white army and even ran their own nWo PPV.

When they wanted to truly compete with the World Wrestling Federation, they brought in most of that company's biggest stars and most recognizable faces, hiring everyone from Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage to Mean Gene Okerlund and Bobby 'The Brain' Heenan.

And when they needed a babyface to save Sting from the clutches of the evil Four Horsemen? They didn't just send in any babyface, they sent in freakin' Robocop!

And so it was that when the company teamed up with Electronic Arts to produce a new video game called WCW Mayhem, they once again proved just how much they loved going all the way with things.

Not only did we get the video game, but we also got a music album which combined a small number of wrestlers' entrance themes with a random selection of pop, hip-hop, and metal.

As if that wasn't enough, the company decided to take the Mayhem brand to the next logical level:

Creating an entire PPV designed to promote the video game, and generate interest in the absolute musical weirdness that was  WCW Mayhem: The Album.

Was it any good? Let's head to WCW's first ever PPV from Canada to find out.

The tournament finals are tonight!

After the bizarre, confusing, and annoying finish to last month's Halloween Havoc 1999, Sting had been stripped of the WCW title for attacking an official. As a result, the WCW brain trust had created a 32-person tournament for the vacant title.

At the start of tonight's show, Tony Schiavone talked us through clips from Nitro which showed the first few rounds of the competition.

In notable highlights, Madusa persuaded the Powers That Be to let her enter the competition, only to lose her match to none other than Meng.

Madusa then got re-added to the competition for no apparent reason, but then lost her second attempt to Chris Benoit, who made it all the way the semi-finals after also beating arch-rival Dean Malenko in a steel cage match.

Jeff Jarrett had also made it to the finals by virtue of being 'The Chosen One,' as had Sting -who got in by hitting Brian Knobbs with a baseball bat and pinning him in about five seconds.

Finally, Bret Hart had also made it through despite being injured.

After this lengthy opening video, we then got a second opening video which told us pretty much the same thing as the first, albeit with more soundbites from the various wrestlers promising to become our new champion.

With that, we got the usual introduction from Schiavone and Heenan (I miss Mike Tenay being part of the announce booth), and it was onto our first semi-final match.

World Championship Wrestling World Heavyweight Championship Tournament Semi-Final 1:
Jeff Jarrett vs. Chris Benoit

WCW Mayhem 1999 - Jeff Jarrett battled Chris Benoit
Easily one of the best opening PPV matches of that year, if not of the past several years, Chris Benoit vs. Jeff Jarrett was absolutely tremendous.

Holding nothing back, both went at it full-tilt in a fast-paced, hard-hitting contest with nary a dull moment in sight.

After trading the advantage several times, The Crippler looked to have things sewn up thanks to his patented top rope headbutt, only for Creative Control (Ron & Don Harris) to save Jarrett from defeat.

At that point, Dustin Rhodes ran in to fight with the Harris boys which distracted referee Charles Robinson.

With Lil Naitch's back turned, Benoit was able to wallop Jarrett with Double J's own guitar and score the fall.
Your Winner: Chris Benoit

Afterwards, a blood Jeff Jarrett joined Creative Control in laying waste to Benoit until Doug Dillinger and a gaggle of nobodies ran in to break things up.

Disco is all about the mon-ay

WCW Mayhem 1999 - Mike Tenay interviews Cruiserweight Champion Disco Inferno
Out in the back, Mike Tenay reminded Disco Inferno that as well as putting his cruiserweight title on the line against Evan Karagious, he was also putting up $25,000 of his own money.

Tenay questioned whether Disco cared more about the money than the title, but before the champ could really explain how insulted he was by that remark, he was attacked by Jeff Jarett for no reason.

Jarrett laid into Disco and was eventually pulled off him by an odd assortment of characters including Konnan and Jerry Only from The Misfits.

World Championship Wrestling World Cruiserweight Championship
WCW Cruiserweight Champion Disco Inferno (w/ Tony Marinara) vs. Evan Karagious (w/ Madusa)

WCW Mayhem 1999 - Evan Karagious (w/ Madusa) faced Disco Inferno for the cruiserweight title
The actual match here was pretty good - not flashy, not out of the ordinary, but a relatively decent cruiserweight title match.

The only problem was that you couldn't really pay any attention to it because some annoying little kid called Tony Marinara was doing color commentary.

The story was that Marinara was the son of some kind of New York Italian mobster, who had been sent by his dad to collect a $25,000 debt owed by the Disco Inferno. Disco, it seemed, had been spending beyond his means, which made the whole concept of him putting $25K on the line seem like absolute nonsense.

Doing his best (worst) imitation of a character he once saw in a Godfather movie, Mariana spent the whole match talking about himself which was completely off-putting.

In the end, he got involved in the finish, which saw him accidentally take a chair shot from Disco Inferno.

Seizing the opportunity, Karagious got Disco in the ring and rolled him up for a three count.

The weird thing was that despite winning the title, Karagious appeared like an afterthought in this match. Even his girlfriend, Madusa, played a more important role.
Your Winner and NEW WCW Cruiserweight Champion: Evan Karagious

Backstage, Bret Hart was shown entering the arena and sipping on a Starbucks.

Elsewhere, an off-camera Vince Russo was heard yelling at Jeff Jarrett for screwing up his match with Benoit. Russo warned Jarrett that he had until the end of tonight's show to prove himself.

WCW Mayhem 1999 - Mean Gene Okerlund interviews Screamin' Norman Smiley Screamin' Norman Screams as Normal

Out in the back, Screamin' Norman Smiley was all decked out in full Toronto Maple Leafs hockey gear to protect him in his upcoming hardcore title match against Brian Knobs.

Smiley told Mean Gene Okerlund that he was more than ready for Knobs, but then panicked and screamed like a girl when he heard someone doing construction work off camera.

It was supposed to be funny.

It wasn't.

World Championship Wrestling Hardcore Championship
Brian Knobs (w/ Jimmy Hart) vs. Screamin' Norman Smiley

What was funnier was this: a kind of slapstick comedy hardcore match in which Knobs and Smiley battered each other with a thousand trashcan shots before wandering off backstage for a brawl through the food storage area.

There, Jimmy Hart climbed a ladder and hilariously began throwing food at Norman from a self.

WCW Mayhem 1999 - Nasty Boy Brian Knobs faced Norman Smiley for the WCW Hardcore titleNext, they brawled into an elevator, but when they came to get out, Hart accidentally struck his own man, allowing Norman to get the win and become the company's first ever hardcore champion.

Though this may not have been a classic match, it was certainly a lot of fun in a goofy, comedic kind of way.
Your Winner and NEW WCW Hardcore Champion: Norman Smiley

Post-match, Knobs hit Smiley with yet another garbage can then beat up on Hart for costing him the match.

You say you want a revolution...

Up next, we got a video package highlighting the feud between The Revolution and The Filthy Animals.

Out in the back, Revolution hinted to Mike Tenay that they would be gunning for Torrie Wilson. Now the oddball of the group, Perry Saturn then appeared to randomly take credit for wiping out the dinosaurs before storming off.

Across the way, The Filthy Animals offered a retort to Mean Gene, basically cutting a generic promo in which they vowed to end Revolution.

In other backstage shenanigans, Tony Marinara promised that he was showing up to Nitro the following night and bringing 'The Boys' (The Mamalukes) which left Disco rocking back and forth and referring to himself as a dead man.

Elsewhere, Jeff Jarrett stormed down a corridor having apparently stolen a 2x4 from Jim Duggan.

Six-Person Inter-Gender Elimination Match
The Revolution (Dean Malenko, Perry Saturn & Aysa w/ Shane Douglas) vs. The Filthy Animals (Eddie Guerrero, Torrie Wilson & WCW Tag Team Champion Billy Kidman w/ WCW Tag Team Champion Konnan)

WCW Mayhem 1999 - Torrie Wilson
For saying there was so much incredible talent involved, this proved to be a seriously sloppy mess of a match.

At various times it looked as though the wrestlers had all had some big falling out backstage and refused to sell to each other. Eddie Guerrero dropkicked Dean Malenko in the back, but the Iceman just turned around and acted as nothing happened.

Later, Eddie put Saturn down then climbed the ropes, only for Saturn to pop back again as if he'd just had a really refreshing nap.

When the wrestlers did lock up, most of the actual action looked disjointed and horrible.

There have been worse matches than this in pro wrestling history, but probably none as overwhelmingly disappointing as this one.

In the end, Torrie Wilson was the sole survivor for her team but she got beat when Perry Saturn hit her with a low blow.

Yes, you read that correctly. A woman lost to a low blow.
Your Winner: Perry Saturn

Out in the back, Jef Jarrett was seen beating up Buff Bagwell in the locker room.

Loser Retires Match
Curt Hennig vs. Buff Bagwell

WCW Mayhem 1999 - Curt Hennig lost his 'retirement match' to Buff Bagwell
The announcers kept referring to this as a "loser must hang up his boots" match, but I'm pretty sure they meant it was a retirement match and not that the loser had to tidy his clothes away.

Curt Hennig was no longer a West Texas Redneck and was back to being just a straight-up pro wrestling legend, though I believe his feelings about the quality of rap music remained unchanged.

Here, he too got beat up by Jeff Jarrett and Creative Control before entering into a passable contest with Buff Bagwell.

Though neither man's finest hour,  it's was perfectly acceptable as mid-card filler which would have been Ok if this weren't, for all intents and purposes, Hennig's retirement match.

After a strong performance, he lost the bout to Buff Bagwell, who then walked off as though retiring a legend was no big deal.
Your Winner: Buff Bagwell

Post-match, Hennig got a standing ovation from the Canadian crowd.

Sting's formula for success

WCW Mayhem 1999 - Mike Tenay interviews Sting
Out in the back, Mike Tenay told Sting that his formula for success was "beat Bret Hart."

I'm not sure if Tenay knew that this wasn't actually a formula.

Sting replied by asking Tenay to relay a message to The Hitman:

He didn't care if they were in Canada, he was still going to beat him.

Alas, Tenay wouldn't get to relay that message as the match was next, meaning Sting would see Bret before Tenay did.

World Championship Wrestling World Heavyweight Championship Tournament Semi-Final
Bret 'The Hitman' Hart vs. Sting

WCW Mayhem 1999 - Sting and Bret Hart faced off in the World title tournament
The last time these two fought on PPV was at Halloween Havoc 1998.

This one was marginally better than that one, but only marginally. For the most part, the two veterans put on a solid show, but then it all came unraveling with the arrival of The Total Package Lex Luger.

Luger took Sting's baseball bat and waffled Sting with it, but Bret wasn't happy, so he attacked Luger and put him in the sharpshooter.

Referee Mickie Jay then decided that because Luger had struck Sting, Sting should be disqualified because who the hell cares about logic, right?

The Hitman argued with Jay that he didn't want to win that way and encouraged the match to be restarted. When it did, things got much better and we actually got a pretty dramatic final sequence which saw The Hitman reverse the Scorpion Death Lock into a Sharpshooter for the Eins, Zwei, Drei.
Your Winner: Bret Hart

Afterwards, Sting called Bret back into the ring for a showdown but revealed that he actually just wanted to shake The Hitman's hand as a mark of respect.

The Crippler is Ready for The Hitman

Out in the back, Mean Gene Okerlund interviewed Chris Benoit about his world title tournament final match against The Hitman. Benoit, as charismatic and flamboyant as ever, promised to overcome Bret later on tonight.

Man, talk about an over-the-top personality.

Lex is Hurt

WCW Mayhem 1999 - Lex Luger feigned an injury
I feel like this doesn't get said enough:

In terms of character, few were better in the 80s and 90s than heel Lex Luger. Sure, he may not have been amazing in the ring, but his mannerisms were out of this world, and always made this writer in particular laugh out loud.

Here, he was found backstage sporting a neck brace (sorry, 'cervical collar') and telling Mike Tenay that Bret Hart had injured him so much in that last match that there was just no way he could compete tonight.

Ever the generous soul that he was, The Total Package promised to write a personal check to every fan who had hoped to see him wrestle tonight.

His manager, Elizabeth, agreed that this was very generous, though you sort of got the feeling she was more than a little tired of Flexy Lexy ducking out of matches.

Chain Match
Vampiro (w/ Jerry Only) vs. Berlyn (w/ The Wall)

WCW Mayhem 1999 - Berlyn and Vampiro battled in a crappy dog collar match
Though it was called a 'chain' match, this was supposed to be your standard dog collar match.

I say supposed to be because what it actually turned out to be was a big pile of insulting garbage.

Vampiro put the collar around his neck, but then Berlyn decided that he'd rather knock out Lil Naitch than put his collar on. What transpired next was that we got about five minutes of Vampiro brawling inside the ring with The Wall, and Berlyn duking it out with Jerry Only off camera.

This was bad enough, but it was made worse by the arrival of Oklahoma and Steve Williams.

You remember Oklahoma, right?

Basically, it was Ed Ferrara doing a very distasteful parody of Jim Ross.

It was awful, and it made the presentation of this whole terrible match even worse.

In the end, The Wall stormed off after getting into an argument with Berlyn, leaving the former Alex Wright to take a pounding from Vampiro and Jerry Only.

Naturally, Vampiro won the match.
Your Winner: Vampiro

Afterward, Dr. Death destroyed Vampiro.

Scott Hall issues an Open Challenge

Out in the back, Mean Gene Okerlund told us that since Rick Steiner was in the hospital after getting powerbombed through the stage by Sid, that somehow made Scott Hall the Television Champion.

Carrying both the TV belt and the US belt, Hall told Mean Gene that he was issuing an open challenge for tonight. Hall looked a mess here.

One in, one out

Also in the back, Curt Hennig was shown leaving the arena, shaking hands with the likes of Konann on his way out. As he left, Kimberly Page arrived through another entrance, ready for her match against David Flair.

Oh boy, can't wait for that one.

Lex Luger (w/ Elizabeth) vs. Meng

WCW Mayhem 1999 - Lex Luger was an awesome heel
Apparently, The Powers That Be had ordered Lex to compete despite his "injury," so he was forced to face Meng, who he had attacked with a crowbar in order to advance in the world title tournament.

The match wasn't bad, but you know, it was Lex Luger vs. Meng, so it was never going to be a five-star classic.

The sole highlight was when Meng had Luger down in the corner and stood on his neck brace, prompting the clearly terrified Luger to call out "help! help!"

Didn't I tell you heel Lex was a riot?

At the finish, Elizabeth spent about five hours trying to take the top off a can of mace while Luger and Meng hung around on the ropes waiting for, all but killing suspension of disbelief.

Liz was then supposed to spray it at Meng, only for Meng to Meng to move and Lex to get a face full of it, but instead, she pointed the can directly and Lex and sprayed.

It looked stupid.

Finally, Meng tore off Luger's neck brace and slapped on the Tongan Death Grip for the win.
Your Winner: Meng

You know, when this show started I had really high hopes that it was going to be a great show, but the longer it goes on, the worse it seems to get.

Putting friendship aside

Out in the back, Bret 'The Hitman' Hart told Mean Gene Okerlund that he was going to put his friendship with Chris Benoit aside in order to beat him for the WCW title.

World Championship Wrestling United States and Television Championship
WCW US and TV Champion Scott Hall vs. Booker T

WCW Mayhem 1999 - Scott Hall defended the WCW and TV titles against Booker T
It's honestly hard to tell if Hall was drunk or if he'd just stopped caring. Either way, he looked a mess here.

The weirdest part was that despite this, he was able to have a pretty good with the man who answered his open challenge:

Booker T.

Though short, this double title match was pretty enjoyable, at least it was until Jeff Jarrett came down and helped Hall defeat Booker with the Outsider Edge.
Your Winner and still US and TV Champion: Scott Hall

Post-match, Jarrett and Creative Control beat up on Booker T. The lights went out, and when they came back on, a female bodybuilder called Midnight appeared and saved Booker.

Meanwhile, behind the scenes, Lex Luger went looking for Elizabeth.

From there, we got a look at the story behind our next match. That story was basically that David Flair was some kind of psycho stalker and potential rapist, with Kimberly as his victim.

The two would face off next.

Kimberly vs. David Flair

WCW Mayhem 1999 - David Flair faced Kimberly Page
Tony Schiavone called this "one of tonight's marquee matches," which should tell you everything you need to know about the state of WCW in 1999.

This was less of a match and more of a crappy angle. Flair threatened to bash Kim's head in with a crowbar, so Kimberly kicked him in the nuts. Flair didn't flinch, giving us the idea that he was wearing a cup, so Kim pretended she was getting ready to go down on him, then whipped the cup out and blasted him in the balls anyway.

She beat David up some, but he regained the upper hand and the damsel in distress had to be rescued by her husband's friend Chris Kanyon. Finally, DDP himself came out and was about to hit Flair with the crowbar when Arn Anderson came to David's rescue.

The Pages walked off, and that was that.
No contest

WCW Mayhem 1999 - Mike Tenay interviews Sid Vicious Afterwards, Flair walloped Anderson in the back with a crowbar and Double-A had to be stretchered out, which seemed a little excessive.

We then got a video for the upcoming Sid/Goldberg match, followed by Mike Tenay interviewing Mr. Vicious himself.

Big Sid told Tenay that he would never say 'I Quit' to Bill Goldberg, but would instead beat on Bill until he admitted that Sid was the Master and the Ruler of the World.

I don't care what you say, Sid was always great.

I Quit Match
Goldberg vs. Sid Vicious

I say 'great,' I mean more in terms of his promos and character than anything he did in the ring.

Of course, it didn't help that they made this an I Quit match, effectively taking away the only things that made Sid and Goldberg attractions and forcing them to wrestle a submission style match neither man was suited to.

After a few minutes of nothingness, Goldberg made Sid pass out, and that was basically that.
Your Winner: Goldberg

Backstage, Lex Luger told Mean Gene that he was going to get even with Elizabeth for costing him the match with Meng.

Finally, it was time for our main event.

World Championship Wrestling World Heavyweight Championship Tournament Final
Chris Benoit vs. Bret 'The Hitman' Hart

WCW Mayhem 1999 - The Best There is, The Best There was, and The Best There Ever Will BE
This had the potential to be an all-time classic main event.

Instead, run-ins from Dean Malenko, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, and Goldberg all diluted things to a large degree. The run-ins were all completely unnecessary, but even despite them, Hart and Benoit worked tirelessly to deliver the best main event they could given the circumstances.

The only sad thing was that such circumstances dictated that this was only going to be a very good match rather an incredible one.

Not that this is much of a complaint. This was still a great effort that ended with a win for The Hitman courtesy of the Sharpshooter.
Your Winner and NEW WCW World Heavyweight Champion: Bret Hart

Bringing his wife and kids into the ring, The Hitman hugged Benoit then celebrated with his new title and the Canadian flag as Mayhem went off the air.

And so WCW's first PPV in Canada was headlined by a good main event between two of Canada's biggest stars, but was it any good?

Yes and no.

On the whole, this was far better than some of WCW's other PPVs from 1999. The opening Benoit/Jarrett match, the fun hardcore match and both of Bret Hart's two matches delivered to an extent, but again there was a lot of frustrating and confusing moments, dumb stuff like the Elizabeth botch, and The Filthy Animals vs. Revolution match in which everybody seemed to phone it in.

With another thirteen or fourteen WCW PPVs to go, I'm hoping, praying, that we get at least one more good show from start to finish but to be honest, I won't hold my breath.

1999 events reviewed so far
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    Thursday, 15 August 2019

    PPV REVIEW: WCW Fall Brawl 1999

    WCW Fall Brawl 1999 - Event poster
    September 12, 1999
    Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Winston-Salem, North Carolina

    For the better part of the 1990s, World Championship Wrestling's annual Fall Brawl show was the one night of the year you were guaranteed to see one of the company's signature matches:

    War Games.

    Yet in 1999, both WCW and the wrestling industry as a whole were doing their best to throw tradition out of the window and establish themselves as a new, edgy, alternative kind of product that would basically redefine pro wrestling in the new millennium.

    Alas, for the first time since the early 1990s, this year's show didn't feature any War Games match at all.

    What it did feature, however, was red & yellow Hulk Hogan, Sting, Lex Luger and Kevin Nash. In other words, exactly the kind of stars you'd want to have on top of your card in order to position your company as new, edgy and different.

    With that rather sarcastic introduction out of the way, let's head to Winston-Salem for Fall Brawl 1999.

    Who can you trust?

    WCW Fall Brawl 1999 - Mike Tenay, Tony Schiavone, Bobby 'The Brain' Heenan
    Tonight's opening video package recounted the problems between World Heavyweight Champion Hulk Hogan and his upcoming opponent, Sting.

    Basically, both Hogan and Lex Luger were trying to get in Sting's ear and convince him that the other one couldn't be trusted.

    Would Sting be able to trust good guy Hulk Hogan who had previously been engaged in a notoriously long war with The Stinger back in 1997? Or would he be able to trust Luger, his long-time friend who had a proven track record of turning on him?

    Only time would tell.

    Or maybe the announcers would, as it was to them that we went next.

    Tony Schiavone, Iron Mike Tenay and Bobby 'The Brain' Heenan told us all about Sting's troubles with Hogan and Sting before running down some of the other matches on tonight's card, including our opening contest.

    This led us to a quick video package detailing the rivalry that Vampiro & The ICP had with Eddie Guerrero, Billy Kidman, and Rey Mysterio Jr.

    That match was next.

    Vampiro & The Insane Clown Posse (Violent J & Shaggy 2 Dope) vs. Eddie Guerrero, Billy Kidman, and Rey Mysterio Jr.

    WCW Fall Brawl 1999 - Vampiro and the ICP faced the Filthy Animals
    Last month, at Road Wild 1999, these two opened the show with a pretty fun contest. Tonight, they didn't quite live up to the standards they'd set back at the height of summer. There was far too much stalling in the early going and something about it just didn't quite click the same way.

    Still, this was by no means a bad match.

    The Insane Clown Posse - while hardly the next Brain Busters- were better pro wrestlers than you might have imagined, and they worked well with Vampiro, Guerrero, Kidman and Rey to put on a solid opener that got better the longer it went on.

    After a good 15 minutes of action, Kidman hit the shooting star press to pick up the three.
    Your Winners: Eddie Guerrero, Billy Kidman and Rey Mysterio Jr.

    Out in Internet Location, some random guy wanted to know if The Revolution could have a clean sweep in their matches tonight, but Saturn was more interested in how he could download photos of The Nitro Girls.

    World Championship Wrestling World Cruiserweight Championship
    WCW Cruiserweight Champion Lenny Lane (w/ Lodi) vs. Kaz Hayashi

    WCW Fall Brawl 1999 - Lenny Lane and Lodi - The West Hollywood Blondes
    Prior to the match, we got a look back at Lenny Lane's new team with Lodi and how he managed to upset Rey Mysterio Jr. for the title. At the same time, Kaz Hayashi had been on a roll, and even beat Lane in a non-title match, earning his title shot championship opportunity tonight and having the notable distinction of being the first Japanese wrestler in WCW history not to be managed by Sonny Onoo.

    That's a joke by the way before you leave comments.

    Like the previous outing, this one got better the longer it went on.

    To begin with, Lenny's gay gimmick got in the way of him doing anything meaningful with his opponent, but when they finally got on to some proper wrestling, they turned in a decent, though hardly spectacular matchup which saw the champ retain thanks to interference from Lodi.
    Your Winner and Still Cruiserweight Champion: Lenny Lane

    WCW Fall Brawl 1999 - Mean Gene Okerlund interviews Sting
    Up next, Mean Gene Okerlund was out in the ring for an interview with Sting. Ever the charismatic superstar, The Stinger was none too happy with Lex Luger and insisted that he and The Total Package were close to having no friendship whatsoever.

    Sting then revealed that he had no problem at all with Hulk Hogan until they got in the ring, at which point he would try to take Hogan's title and become the nine-time champion.

    The whole segment was pretty short and to the point, but Sting was very entertaining here and the crowd, naturally, loved him.

    No Disqualification Match
    The First Family (Hugh Morrus & Brian Knobbs w/ Jimmy Hart) vs. The Revolution (Shane Douglas &  Dean Malenko)

    It's rare that I ever say this about a Dean Malenko match, but boy was this terrible.

    Both teams started off brawling on the outside, which made sense for a No DQ match, but then they took to the ring and got on with a normal tag match, complete with Malenko standing on the outside while his partner got his ass handed to him when he could have just dove in there and helped him out.

    For the rest of the match nothing, and I mean nothing, happened that justified the no disqualification stipulation. In fact, it's fair to say that nothing of any interest happened at all.

    This was dull, messy and boring. The only good thing about it was that it ended.
    Your Winners: The First Family

    Prior to the next match, we saw that Rick Steiner and Perry Saturn didn't like each other. This was convenient since they'd now be competing for the TV title.

    World Championship Wrestling World Television Championship
    WCW World TV Champion Rick Steiner vs. Perry Saturn.

    WCW Fall Brawl 1999 - Rick Steiner defended the TV title against Perry Saturn
    You know, I started Retro Pro Wrestling as a fun little hobby, but watching WCW really makes it feel like work.

    This was not a good match. Saturn tried, but Rick Steiner blatantly didn't give a damn about things, and neither did the announcers.

    Instead, they took a verbal detour to tell us that Buff Bagwell had not arrived for his match against Berlyn and a substitute wrestler would take his place. They also told us that the referees and announcers were wearing black armbands as a mark of respect for the recent passing of Brian 'Mark Curtis' Hillibrand.

    Back to the match, Steiner made the whole thing look like garbage then eventually won. It was atrocious.
    Your Winner and Still TV Champion: Rick Steiner

    Out in the back, Mean Gene wanted to know if Sting could trust Hulk Hogan.

    Hulkster answered in the affirmative, insisting that he had made a promise to his kids that he was walking on the right side of the law and that he was going to beat Sting fair and square, with no shady goings-on.

    Berlyn (w/ The Wall) vs. Hacksaw Jim Duggan

    WCW Fall Brawl 1999 - Berlyn w/ The Wall faced Hacksaw Jim Duggan
    Sigh, let's get this one over with.

    Hacksaw Jim Duggan was in this match because, rather than being 'late', Buff Bagwell had, in real-life, actually refused to job to Berlyn.

    So whilst the novelty of having Evil German Berlyn (Alex Wright with a new gimmick) going up against Ultra-American Jim Duggan was kinda fun, that novelty value quickly wore off.

    Hacksaw spent the first few minutes no-selling all of Berlyn's offence. The two then spent the next couple of minutes sat on the mat doing nothing before toppling to the outside, where The Wall clotheslined Duggan out of his boots, causing more damage with that one move than Berlyn had done the entire match.

    Inside the ring, Berlyn hit a Rude Awakening and picked up a win which was met with absolute silence.
    Your Winner: Berlyn

    Out in the back, Buff Bagwell had finally 'arrived' and was trying to get Mike Graham to reformat the show so he could wrestle.

    After being told to be on time 'for once in your life,' Bagwell rushed to the ring to embrace Duggan but was pushed off by a beat-up Hacksaw.

    I'll remind you that Buff was the babyface here.

    He looked like an idiot.

    World Championship Wrestling World Tag Team Championship
    WCW World Tag Team Champions The West Texas Rednecks (Barry & Kendal Windham w/ Curt Hennig) vs. Harlem Heat (w/ Booker T & Stevie Ray)

    WCW Fall Brawl 1999 - Stevie Ray
    You know, after being totally burned out by the last couple of matches, it was really, really hard to get excited about anything Harlem Heat and The West Texas Rednecks did here.

    That's probably because they didn't do very much at all, but even when they were trying -and I mean, really, really trying- it was a struggle to enjoy this one.

    After what felt like the longest time ever, Booker hit the missile dropkick and Harlem Heat won the tag team titles for the second PPV in a row.
    Your Winners and NEW WCW Tag Team Champions: Harlem Heat

    Up next, we got a hype video for our upcoming US title match in which Sid Justice went on a dominant winning streak and promised to destroy Chris Benoit for the US title.

    World Championship Wrestling United States Championship
    WCW United States Champion Chris Benoit vs. Sid Vicious

    WCW Fall Brawl 1999 - Sid Vicious faced Chris Benoit for the US title
    It says a lot about your show when a match involving a beat up Sid Vicious is one of the best things on it.

    To be fair, almost everything good about this match was thanks to Benoit, how hard he worked and just how universally loved by the live crowd he was.

    Not that his unwavering popularity did him any favours here.

    Despite finding a number of ways to ground Sid, it was ultimately The Millenium Man who went 80-0 and became your new US champion after a pretty decent outing.
    Your winner and NEW US Champion: Sid Vicious

    Next, we got a video package of DDP threatening to kick Goldberg's teeth in and Goldberg replying by threatening to rip Page's throat out.

    Diamond Dallas Page vs. Goldberg

    WCW Fall Brawl 1999 - DDP faced Goldberg
    Could Goldberg and DDP recapture the magic they created back at Halloween Havoc 1998 in a match that Dallas famously made pages upon pages of plans for?

    Not quite, but this was still a pretty fun bout between the two.

    Page had his whole cocky, cowardly heel thing down to perfection by this stage, at one point taking to the mic and threatening to leave if the crowd didn't stop chanting for Goldberg. Naturally, they blew the roof off the place.

    The actual in-ring action was as good as you were going to get from these two and made for an enjoyable showing.

    In the end, The Jersey Triad ran out and bashed Goldberg over the head with an International Object which looked to be made of glass and caused a nasty cut on his neck. Undeterred, Goldberg clotheslined Bam Bam Bigelow and Kanyon out of their boots, then smashed DDP with both a spear and Jackhammer to win the match.
    Your Winner: Goldberg

    There's 21 minutes left on this show and only one more match.

    Look, I enjoy Hulk Hogan as a character, but a 20-minute Hogan match in 1999? Please say it isn't so.

    World Championship Wrestling World Heavyweight Championship
    WCW World Heavyweight Champion Hulk Hogan vs. Sting

    WCW Fall Brawl 1999 - Hulk Hogan defended the WCW title against Sting
    Well, this was garbage.

    In a match that went way too long, Sting got his ass beat by Hogan at the slowest, most tedious pace possible.

    After several minutes of awfulness, Diamond Dallas Page ran in and hit Hogan with a Running Turd Breaker that looked like a crappy version of the Diamond Cutter. He draped Sting's arm over Hogan but Hogan kicked out, so Page hit the referee with another Diamond Cutter that was only slightly better than the first.

    Then Bret Hart came down to beat up Hogan and Lex Luger came down also. As Hogan dealt with the dastardly Luger, Sting grabbed a baseball bat which he eventually hit Hogan with.

    This was supposed to be Sting's big heel turn, but the crowd loved it.

    Sting then hit the Scorpion death lock and became your new nine-time WCW champion.
    Your Winner and NEW World Heavyweight Champion: Sting

    Post-match, Sting and Luger embraced, revealing that they'd been in cahoots the whole time.

    I rarely get angry these days, but having sat through that atrocity of a show, I actually feel my blood boiling.

    The first couple of matches were pretty decent and things picked up a little towards the end before taking an absolute nosedive in the main event.

    Seriously, do yourself a favour and avoid this one like the plague.

    1999 events reviewed so far
    Other WCW Fall Brawl reviews
    1. WCW Fall Brawl 1996
    2. WCW Fall Brawl 1997
    3. WCW Fall Brawl 1998
      Be the first to catch the latest Retro Pro Wrestling reviews by following on Facebook or Twitter @RetroPWrestling.

      Thursday, 1 August 2019

      PPV REVIEW: WCW Road Wild 1999

      WCW Road Wild 1999 - Event poster
      August 14, 1999
      Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in Sturgis, South Dakota.

      To be fair to World Championship Wrestling, the company had managed to get quite a lot of mileage (literally and figuratively) out of what had started as an excuse for Eric Bischoff to ride his motorbike for a bit.

      From the inaugural Hog Wild event in 1996 which saw a newly-heel Hollywood Hogan defeat The Giant and bring the World Championship into the nWo, to the highly criticised in-ring debut of TV host Jay Leno at the 1998 event (via a forced name change to Road Wild courtesy of Harley Davidson's lawyers), the company's annual visit to Sturgis may not have delivered many five-star classics, but certainly created many a memorable moment.

      Now, however, Bischoff's Road Wild creation was soon to be put to bed for good.

      With his time at the top reaching an end, the mastermind of World Championship Wrestling's most successful period in history once again saddled up and rode into South Dakota for what proved to be the final Road Wild PPV in history.

      Let's head to the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally to see what went down.

      Hulk Hogan is Back!

      WCW Road Wild 1999 - Tony Schiavone, Iron Mike Tenay and Bobby 'The Brain' Heenan
      We started our show tonight with a confusing video which basically told us that tonight we would see Kevin Nash challenging Hulk Hogan for the World Heavyweight Championship.

      In the few short weeks since Bash at the Beach 1999, Hogan had not only returned to the company after a lengthy absence, not only beat Nash for the title but also ditched the Hollywood gimmick and returned back to the traditional red and yellow.

      This video glossed over all of that and focused primarily on Nash and Hogan hitting each other with chairs.

      None of it made any sense. Then again, this was 1999 WCW, so you could probably say that about anything.

      Heading live to Sturgis, cameras panned the sea of fans before got to the annual embarrassment of seeing Tony Schiavone doing his best impression of a biker he once saw on an early-90s sitcom.

      Joined, as ever, by Iron Mike Tenay and Bobby 'The Brain' Heenan, Schiavone put over tonight's main event. Again, all three announcers totally overlooked the fact that Hogan was back to being a babyface, which was a pretty big deal at the time.

      They also sent us to a second video package, this one even more confusing than the first one.

      You sort of got the idea that The Filthy Animals didn't like Vampiro (and that the feeling was mutual), but the whole thing looked as though it had been edited by a 12-year-old with ADHD, so you really couldn't tell why, or what Eddie Guerrero, Raven and the Insane Clown Posse had to do with it.

      Hopefully, we'd get some answers in our next match, as it looked to be the culmination of whatever bewildering story WCW had just tried to tell us.

      Six Man Tag
      The Dead Pool (Vampiro, Shaggy 2 Dope and Violent J w/ Raven) vs. Eddie Guerrero, Kidman, and WCW Cruiserweight Champion Rey Mysterio Jr.

      WCW Road Wild 1999 - Tony Schiavone, Iron Mike Tenay and Bobby 'The Brain' Heenan
      You know, this is the first WCW PPV featuring an Eddie Guerrero match since Bash at the Beach 1998 and man, what a comeback it was for the former leader of the Latino World Order.

      If you're anything like me, your first instinct may have been to let out an audible groan at the mere mention of the Insane Clown Posse. Thankfully, the contributions of Shaggy 2 Dope and Violent J were kept to a minimum here and, when they did get involved, they -surprisingly- didn't suck.

      OK, so those contributions were really only suplexes, punches and kicks, but the rappers played their parts well and left Vampiro to do the bulk of the work.

      That work saw him mostly interact with Eddie and Rey Mysterio Jr., both of whom took turns at playing the face-in-peril and who, along with Kidman, shone brightly throughout the match.

      All of this combined to make a really enjoyable opening contest with nary a dull moment in sight.

      The end came when Vampiro accidentally kicked Violent J, then was pulled into a brawl on the outside. That gave Kidman the chance to hit the Shooting Star Press and pick up the win for his team.
      Your Winners: Eddie Guerrero, Kidman and Rey Mysterio Jr.

      Up next, a recap from recent Nitros told us that Harlem Heat had reformed and were now feuding with The Jersey Triad for the tag team titles. The two teams would face off next.

      World Championship Wrestling World Tag Team Championship
      WCW Tag Team Champions The Jersey Triad (Bam Bam Bigelow & Kanyon) vs. Harlem Heat (Stevie Ray and Booker T)

      WCW Road Wild 1999 - Chris Kanyon and Bam Bam Bigelow of The Jersey Triad
      Funny lols to start with as Bam Bam Bigelow's tag team title fell off his waist and dropped to the floor. Kanyon then took to the mic and vowed that he wasn't going to do his usual 'Who's better than Kanyon?' routine because the Sturgis crowd couldn't possibly be as dumb as they looked. I wasn't sure as to the logic on that one, but there you go.

      Pre-match shenanigans aside, once Booker T and Stevie Ray got in the ring, they ended up having a good, solid match with the champions.

      Somewhat surprisingly, given that he was the biggest man in the match, Stevie Ray played the face-in-peril as Kanyon and Bigelow proved themselves to be a capable team which this fan would have liked to have seen enjoy a longer run.

      Naturally, Booker popped the crowd huge when he finally got the hot tag and cleaned house, a moment which proved to be the highlight of a pretty entertaining contest.

      Towards the finish, Diamond Dallas Page ran out to help his teammates but Harlem Heat sent Bam Bam crashing into him. Booker then hit Bigelow with a top rope dropkick, Stevie made the three count, and we had new, eight-time tag team champions.
      Your Winners and NEW tag team champions: Harlem Heat

      Between the matches, we got a recap of the rivalry between Saturn and Curt Hennig which, on a larger scale, extended to a feud between The West Texas Rednecks and The Revolution.

      We weren't actually told why the two sides disliked each other, jus that they did and would face off next.

      Six Man Tag
      The West Texas Rednecks (Curt Hennig, Barry Windham, and Bobby Duncum Jr. w/ Kendal Windham) vs. The Revolution (Perry Saturn, Dean Malenko, and Shane Douglas)

      WCW Road Wild 1999 - West Texas Rednecks
      This was an interesting one to watch because it actually started out pretty good, but then got sloppier, and increasingly more tedious the longer it went on.

      Although not the longest match on the card, you got the idea that if they'd shaved a few minutes off it, they could have tightened things up and kept it as fun to watch as it was in the opening moments.

      Instead, things gradually disintegrated into a clusterf**k finish in the midst of which Saturn was able to hit a Death Valley Driver and pick up the three count.
      Your Winners: The Revolution

      Post-match, The West Texas Rednecks tried to beat up their opponents some more, but Shane Douglas, Dean Malenko and Saturn saw them off.

      Ernest 'The Cat' Miller (w/ Sonny Onoo) vs. Buff Bagwell

      WCW Road Wild 1999 - Ernest 'The Cat' Miller and Sonny Onoo
      The only thing more ridiculous than the sight of Ernest Miller and Sonny Onoo dressed in biker gear is The Cat's WWE Network theme which, as I never fail to mention, sounds terrible.

      Once he got in the ring, Miller attempted to goad the crowd but was quickly and loudly drowned out by the sound of that same crowd revving the engines of their motorcycles.

      Buff Bagwell eventually made his way out and spent the first minute or so of this match going back and forth on the microphone with his opponent to really get the fans fired up.

      When Bagwell took the mic, the crowd cheered then hushed to let him speak. Whenever Miller took it, the crowd turned up the noise to drown him out, prompting the karate champion to take a walk around ringside and yell at them.

      That was the best thing about this match. The actual wrestling may not have been much to write home about, but both men proved themselves to be experts in getting a strong reaction from the live audience. That in itself, more than any of the actual moves that they did, made this one worth watching.

      After a passable contest, they pretty much repeated the ending from the earlier tag team title match. Sonny Onoo got up on the apron, Buff reversed an Irish whip and sent Miller crashing into him, then rolled up his opponent and got the pin.
      Your Winner: Buff Bagwell

      Afterwards, Onoo and The Cat beat up -and then mocked- Buff.

      We then got a recap of the rivalry between Chris Benoit and Diamond Dallas Page

      World Championship Wrestling United States Heavyweight Championship No Disqualification Match
      WCW United States Champion Chris Benoit vs. Diamond Dallas Page

      WCW Road Wild 1999 - Diamond Dallas Page faced Chris Benoit for the US title
      Prior to the bell, two-time, two-time, two-time world champion DDP promised to become a three-time, three-time, three-time US champion. He then apologised to Chris Benoit for talking trash about Benoit's mother before doing it again anyway, implying that Mrs Benoit was a phone sex worker.

      Page was compelling on the mic, but you got the distinct feeling that the crowd were paying no attention to him whatsoever.

      What they were paying attention to was the match itself, which was almost as good as you could expect from Page and Benoit. I say almost because the two had put on a superior match -which also involved Raven- back at Uncensored 1998. Yet while this failed to match the quality of that one, it was still the best match on the card so far.

      As the final minutes began ticking down, Kanyon and Bigelow ran in to help DDP, but since they were the good guys, Benoit's teammates in The Revolution hung back, watching the match on a monitor and letting Chris deal with things himself.

      Deal with them he did, somehow managing to take out all three men before retaining his title thanks to his top rope headbutt.
      Your Winner and Still United States Champion: Chris Benoit

      Post-match, The Revolution ran down to congratulate the champ. Benoit, Douglas, and Saturn all tried talking to the camera at the same time which was awkward and messy.

      Let's Give Away a Bike

      Speaking of awkward...

      The show's sponsor, American Iron Horse were giving away a custom WCW motorcycle in a prize draw. Some guy who apparently worked for WCW but who nobody had ever heard of tried to host the segment but did a terrible job of it, at one point asking for "the envelope, please" after it had already been given to him.

      Some guy called Darnell from Cleveland, Ohio won it, which Bobby Heenan thought was the funniest thing in the world. You could clearly hear The Brain laughing his arse off most of the way through the segment and afterwards.

      Though I'm not sure what was so funny about it, I'd love to find out what happened to that bike.

      Sid Vicious vs. Sting

      WCW Road Wild 1999 - Sid Vicious faced Sting
      Before this match, we got another one of WCW's strange video packages that gave no context whatsoever. Sure, we learned that Sting and Sid Vicious had beef, but we never really understood why.

      The match itself wasn't the worst thing ever, but it was certainly the worst thing on the card up to this point. Some people were able to get a really good match out of Sid but, as talented as he might have been, Sting was sadly not one of those people.

      As such, we got a match that seemed clumsy and half-arsed.

      At one point, Sting went to throw Sid into the crowd, but because there was barely any room and the bikers were trying to keep Sid's big legs from kicking their bikes, it just looked terrible.

      Later, Sid was down and Sting went to run the ropes, only for Sid to trip him up. It was a simple move that didn't even look like it was entirely on purpose, but the announcers sold it like Vicious had just busted out a Canadian Destroyer.

      It was dumb.

      After a bunch of minutes of lacklustre action, 'Millenium Man' Sid Vicious struck a chokeslam to keep his recent undefeated streak alive.
      Your Winner: Sid Vicious

      As the sun set over Sturgis, we were taken back to Nitro to learn that Rick Steiner and Goldberg hated each other and would be competing next.

      Rick Steiner vs. Goldberg

      WCW Road Wild 1999 - Rick Steiner vs. Bill Goldberg
      There's no way of getting around it:

      This was horrible.

      If you ever wanted to see five minutes of Rick Steiner lazily hitting Goldberg with Goldberg's own knee brace, followed by Goldberg himself making a miracle comeback, hitting a spear and a jackhammer then getting the fall, then this is the match for you.

      Otherwise, just trust me that this was absolutely awful and let's move on with our lives, shall we?
      Your Winner: Goldberg.

      Ah, Goldberg. Remember when you were the hottest thing in wrestling?

      Dennis Rodman vs. Macho Man Randy Savage

      WCW Road Wild 1999 - Macho Man Randy Savage faced Dennis Rodman
      It's been a good five minutes since I finished watching this match and I've still no idea how to adequately describe the absolute nonsensical mess that I've just seen.

      Prior to the match, we were shown a clip from Nitro in which Dennis Rodman basically kidnapped Savage's valet, Gorgeous George. In an in-ring promo, Savage then said he was bringing someone to Sturgis to protect her, insisting that not only was this protector the baddest man on the planet but that he was also the mystery man who drove the hummer in Savage's recent feud with Kevin Nash.

      If you were expecting a surprise appearance from someone here, forget about it. This mystery man was never mentioned again for the whole match.

      Instead, Rodman staggered to ringside looking stoned out of his mind and wanted to know where "his bitch" (Gorgeous George) was at.

      "You're MY bitch tonight," replied Savage, inviting the Sturgis crowd to take 'sloppy seconds' afterwards.

      Rodman then demanded that Savage meet him outside the ring because "I DO ALL MY SHIT OUTSIDE", but immediately contradicted himself by rolling into the ring.

      After about a minute of sloppy action, Rodman beat up the referee. In any other match, that would be a DQ, but this was WCW, so another referee came out and acted as nothing had happened. Savage beat that guy up, putting us on referee number three, before going outside and beating up a cameraman. He then took the camera and waffled Rodman with it.

      "This is horrible," said Schiavone. He was absolutely right.

      The match then went outside and into the backstage area despite not being a Falls Count Anywhere match. The referee decided to ignore the count-out rule that had been a part of pro wrestling since time immemorial and simply followed the two combatants.

      Out in the back, Savage dumped Rodman into a porta potty then tipped it over. All kinds of crap leaked out, which was probably a perfect metaphor for this match.

      Eventually, they made it back into the ring for another ref bump and a short nap for Savage and Rodman. At this point, Gorgeous George ran out, handed Savage a chain to wrap around his fist and then hit Dennis with a low blow. Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, Savage pummelled Rodman with a chain-wrapped fist and won this utter abomination.
      Your Winner: Randy Savage

      Macho Man is one of my favourite wrestlers of all time but, my God, that was embarrassing. I almost want to recommend you watch that match just to see how truly atrocious it really was.

      Finally, it was time for our main event.

      Retirement Match for the World Championship Wrestling World Heavyweight Championship
      WCW World Heavyweight Champion Hulk Hogan vs. Kevin Nash

      Winner becomes champion, loser retires from pro wrestling.

      WCW Road Wild 1999 - Hulk Hogan defended the WCW title against Kevin Nash
      I get that there will be people who hate this match, but personally, I thought it was a lot of fun to see old-school '80s Hogan doing his stuff at the turn of the millennium.

      Though it was very slow in parts, you got the feeling that Hogan was trying at times to replicate his classic Wrestlemania 3 battle with Andre and, for the most part, it worked.

      Towards the finish, Nash was in control and hit Hogan with his jackknife. Hogan kicked out, hulked up, and one big leg later, ended Kevin Nash's career...kinda.
      Your Winner and Still WCW World Heavyweight Champion: Hulk Hogan

      Nash would take the rest of summer off and return in October of that year, but for now, he simply lay around while the red and yellow rode high in Sturgis and Hogan celebrated his big victory.

      And so, the Road Wild chapter of WCW's turbulent history ended on a bit of a whimper. As I said at the beginning, this show never had a history of producing really good matches, so at least you can say that it lived up to its reputation here, but that's not necessarily a good thing.

      Save for the novelty factor of seeing old-school Hogan in the main event, this show really did get worse as it went on.

      Honestly, you won't be missing much if you give this one a miss, though I am still tempted to suggest that you check out Savage/Rodman because I don't believe that I've been able to do justice to just what a farcical mess that whole thing was.

      1999 events reviewed so far
      Other WCW Road Wild events

      Be the first to catch the latest Retro Pro Wrestling reviews by following on Facebook or Twitter @RetroPWrestling.

      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.