Kick Out at Nitro! 4-1-1996

Posted: April 23, 2015 by Kick Out At 2! in Kick Out At Nitro, Phillip R
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

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Hello, ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to another edition of the Internet’s only chronological expose on WCW Nitro history!  I’m joined, once again, by the Colorado Kid himself, Phillip.  He’s taking a look into this episode, coming to us live from Cleveland, Ohio.  I’ll be back at the end for my thoughts as well as for the ratings and Raw thoughts, but for now, I leave you in Phillip’s hands.

-Shane

Match #1: The Giant VS Sting

Show opens and it’s actually a really exciting open, Stinger is out there working over the Giant. Of course the action is slowing down as it does when The Giant is wrestling. Seeing this brightly colored Sting, no matter how much I see it makes me a child again, and I mark. The story line that’s playing out here is that the Harlem Heat was supposed to be a tag vs Giant and Sting, and Jimmy Hart has paid everyone off. There’s a huge spot where he dropkicks giant off the apron, and Lex comes out to save the day. Giant sprays some screaming into the camera letting Sting know that the only reason he survived is because Lex is there…

Winner: The Giant (via DQ)

Show officially opens, and we’re getting backstory on this Jimmy Hart payoff. I think I mentioned this in my last post, but Mongo needs to go, it’s like he and Heenan are trying to work the same angle, and they are both annoying.

Match #2: Triangle Tag Team Match: The Steiner Brothers VS The Road Warriors VS The Nasty Boys

Onto this 3 way Triangle Tag.. This was all set up with the Steiners Debut where the Nasty Boys went to the Hospital and no one knew who did it. Some athletic action in this match. Scott still has that beautiful mullet. For a 6 man event, this match is beautifully paced. A lot of these matches work as distractions to avoid showing a lack of action or ring work. There’s a chaotic everyone brawling outside the ring moment, but overall some really good, well paced action. Bischoff throws a mention to the Steiners debut, and that setting up this match. Animal grabs a heel of Knobbs, but somehow even though every other touch of a man is a tag, this one doesn’t count… I love the suspension of disbelief that I clearly had as a young man. Watching this match, I’m sure this is going to be the highlight again. A really nice spot, Rick sets up a belly to belly on the top, and Hawk pushes them both over the top. Public Enemy comes out and runs some interference. Johnny Gunge dressed as Knobbs runs in the ring and takes the pin. It looks like Public Enemy mugged the Nasty Boys.

Winner: The Steiner Brothers 

They make a spot showing Luger defending the TV title, and Flair defending the Heavywieight title… Makes you wonder how that main event’s going to turn out…

Match #3: “The Enforcer” Arn Anderson & “Taskmaster” Kevin Sullivan w/ Woman and Ms. Elizabeth VS Hulk Hogan & The Booty Man w/ Kimberly

Double A and the Taskmaster come out with Elizabeth and Woman. Elizabeth and woman come out looking like a walking 80’s glamour shot.  The walking cartoon duo of Hulk and BM come out for the match. I think WCW’s April Fools joke is pushing BM as a star, and trying to sell Hulk as someone who still wrestles. The physique differences are pretty hilarious, it’s two stocky, chubby, pale dudes wrestling two bodybuilders, who spend half their day in the tanning booth turning their skin into tanned leather with a ton of bright colors. Woman digging into BM’s face. All of the offense is really BM and Hogan, but finally there is a shift, watching Double A job to Hogan and BM makes me feel a little ill. A couple of boots to the face, and Hogan has yet to take a bump. Hogan uses Booty Babe’s heel to take out Taskmaster. I have to say typing Booty Babe, makes it near impossible to not cringe, what a god awful gimmick.

Post match there’s a little action. They tag BM, but Hogan still taking no bumps.

Winners: Hulk Hogan & The Booty Man

Hulk and BM doing some tough Mic work. BM has a plan to get the “last laugh” there’s a lot of “brother’s” and “booty” and some threat to “kick a can”, won’t take bumps, can’t cut a promo… This is their star.

Match #4: WCW World Heavyweight Championship: “The Total Package” Lex Luger (WCW TV/Tag Team Champ) VS “Nature Boy” Ric Flair (WCW World Champion) w/ Woman & Ms. Elizabeth

Ric Flair in there Ric Flair’ing giving a “WOO!” and a strut. Flair taking some bumps, a big overhead slam. Another big overhead slam. I forgot how many of these matches were only slow ring movement and signature moves. Flair goes up top, and… Overhead slam. Clothesline, and clothesline over the top. Flair chops, and a Luger overhead slam, this time onto the ropes followed by… clotheslines. This match is like going to see Chumbawumba open for Alien Ant Farm and they only play “I get knocked down” and “Smooth Criminal” over and over. Knee block chop and Figure Four… Luger turning the figure four over… Flair grabs a rope and throws luger out, woman rakes the eyes. Luger clotheslines Flair. Sunset flip pin by luger, Flair kicks out at 2, missed hip toss and backslide pin, flair kicks out at 2, Luger catches Flair off the top, sets him up for a superplex. The Luger power slam, Torture Rack, Liz distracts the referee, and woman throws coffee in Lugers face, and Flair leans on the rope for the pin.

Winner: Ric Flair (still WCW World Champion)

Sting comes out to save Luger, while Flair celebrates.

The highlight of this Match was the reminder that Flair is the dirtiest player in the game. Which is a part he plays well.

Match of the night: Triangle Tag

Storyline implications:

Hart paying everyone off to try to let Giant take out Sting

Public Enemy duping the Nasty Boys, likely attacking them

BM coming up with some mystical match to get the last laugh on Double A and Taskmaster

Luger and Sting against the villainy of WCW, playing the hero part well.

 

Overall impressions, This was a set up show to get some storylines started, the next few weeks will see these stories play out. Not a bad Nitro, but definitely more about story than wrestling. The ring work for the most part was ho hum, but you can see that they are trying to set a foundation leading to the next PPV.

Thanks for your time, and I’m out!

Phillip

—–

All in all I thought this was a pretty solid show.  I’m not EXACTLY sure why Jimmy Hart is trying to take out Sting now, though, since Sting hasn’t featured in any of the main story lines for a long time.  He’s busy with the tag team stuff, so there’s really no reason to pay off Harlem Heat to let the Giant beat him down.  Plus, damn, Booker T, that’s cold.  You and Sting were temporary buddies just two weeks ago!  Nice to see Luger rush to Sting’s aid, though.  Luger is pretty much going full babyface in the next few months, so we’re seeing that turn towards that here.  Plus, Luger, even in his tweener role, does seem to genuinely care about Sting, so it’s not too much of a stretch.  It’s nice to know that Luger has Sting’s back when it counts, though.

Man, WCW’s tag team division is stacked!  The Steiners, Road Warriors, American Males, Nasty Boys, Public Enemy, Harlem Heat…it’s so awesome to get to see a company where full tag teams are a thing.  I’m so used to fifteen years of Midcarder A and Midcarder B being thrown together to be a tag team that I forgot what having a full roster of tag teams was like.  This match, like most of the tag matches in the last few months, was pretty hard hitting.  Phillip seems to constantly get Steiner Brothers matches on his write-ups, though, which makes me sad.  I want to call some suplexes!  The Steiners are, legit, my favorite tag team ever, so I’m loving them here.  I know I don’t get but about a year of them…but I’m going to cherish it while I’ve got it!

The Hogan/Booty match…ugh…I’m so damn sick of the Booty Man, I want to scream.  Him trying to say the word “satisfaction” with this weird emphasis failed twice.  It’s like he did it the first time, no one reacted, so he wanted to make sure that people heard him so he did it again!  Thing is, he says it differently both times!  Also, I don’t want to hear Hogan say “booty” anymore.  I don’t want to hear ANYONE say it anymore.  Sadly, we’ll get this match again next week.  I also don’t want anyone to hit anyone else with a shoe anymore.  I’m sick of this gimmick.

The main event…yet another free World Championship defense.  I understand defending the Television title every time you have a television show…but the World Championship is something you should pay to see.  This goes for every company…then, and now.  In a world where you can get access to ANY type of media you want, it sometimes seems like it makes sense to give the title away because you have to draw in viewers.  However, that’s how you tarnish a title.  They do title shots on Nitro every week and none of them feel special anymore.  Title matches should be built up to, PPV main events, with Michael Buffer announcing.  That’s one thing I can say about the time we’ve got coming up when Hogan gets the title…from what I remember, he only defends on PPV.  Granted, he’s a heel and only defends in the mandatory 30 days, but still…he makes it feel special.  But, I digress.  

Bobby Heenan seriously got me with his April Fools joke about this being his last night.  I started wracking my brain (no pun intended) to try to remember if he took time off around this time…but then he gets to the end and I have to admit, he got me.

All in all, decent show.  Not stellar, but not terrible.  Nitro takes a week off next week, so fortunately we’re not as behind as it looks like we are here.  I hope to get the next two episodes up this weekend sometime and then go from there.  See you all next time, fans!

-Shane

 

—–

Ratings Breakdown

WWF Raw Ratings – 2.9

WCW Nitro Ratings – 2.8

(Raw – 11, Nitro – 14) (Tie Weeks – 2)

(Unopposed weeks – 4)

WWF’s longest Winning Streak (to this point) – 2

WCW’s longest Winning Streak (to this point) – 4

 

Back to a WWF win…but we’re about to turn the corner here into May.  Those wins won’t be something we see too much of once that happens.

—–—

WWF Raw results from this week

Mankind defeated Bob Holly

Marc Mero defeated Isaac Yankem DDS

Skip & Zip (c) (w/ Sunny) defeated Aldo Montoya & Barry Horowitz to retain the WWF Tag Team Championship

The Undertaker defeated Justin Bradshaw via disqualification

 

Hey, look, it’s Johnny B Badd!  Is this his official debut?  I may have to watch that to find out as this is a decent sized ship-jump.  It’s not as big as Vader’s was, but still.  Doesn’t look like a terrible Raw, aside from Isaac Yankem being on TV, but still.  I can see how this competed closely with this episode of Nitro.

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