WCW Bash At The Beach 1997
It was a year ago, at this very event, in this very building, that Hulk Hogan revealed himself to be the 3rd man and ushered in the nWo. This year, Dennis Rodman will join him in the main event.
Mortis/Wrath vs Glacier/Ernest Miller
God damn did Mortis' music go hard. Just wonderful. Isn't it amazing that Cat only got into wrestling because he was the karate teacher for Garrett Bischoff? He looks embarrassed of all this shit, too. Glacier is very aggressive, betraying his karate training, no doubt. Cat is very bad at anything that isn't throwing kicks. Oh wow, Wrath puts Glacier's head against the post, then holds a chair for Mortis to superkick. God damn did it connect. This is pretty decent when Glacier is in the ring. Some nifty double team moves. Cat gets the hot tag and unleashes all kinds of kicks. Wait. It wasn't a tag? Oh well. Glacier superkicks James Mitchell, but then turns around into a superkick from Mortis. Glacier suffers his first defeat in WCW. Pretty enjoyable.
DDP is doing is doing an internet interview.
Ultimo Dragon vs Chris Jericho WCW Cruiserweight Championship
Jericho's tights are disgusting. They look like an oily puddle in the parking lot of a 24 hour grocery store. Seems to be a story of how evenly matched and similar in thinking the two are. Dragon's kicks are loud as fuck. And what the fuck, a nerve hold? Come on. Both stand on the top rope. Jericho drop kicks Ultimo to the floor, but completely missed and Ultimo just fell. It was terrible, but seems pretty standard for Ultimo. He takes another fall from the top to the floor getting shoved off trying a super rana. Then they do the crossbody caught with a dropkick spot...from the top to the floor. Jericho takes a few top rope to floor bumps a swell. Every major spot is fucked up, and Jericho eventually wins by rolling through a rana. Bowling shoe ugly, as they say. Title retained. I don't know why both guys took so many top rope to floor bumps in this.
Mean Gene plugs the hotline, then walks to ringside to get some words with Raven and Stevie Richards. Well, Raven. He ignored Stevie. "Don't Mike Tenay me, pal." Raven actual speaks in some weird poem. Then he is asked if he'll be DDP's partner, which is a question he's been asked since his childhood. The real question is: "Are there any dreams I'd like to sell?" Gene wants nothing to do with Stevie, lol. Stevie says something about a big announcement on Nitro, which causes Raven to slap the shit out of him again.
Great Muta/Masahiro Chono vs Steiner Brothers
I'm not sure if this is actually a number one contenders match or not. Do the Steiners have to beat Muta/Chono to get a title match? Do Muta/Chono get a title shot if they win? Or do the Steiners just have to face them first? It's weird seeing Scott try to do his super athletic stuff, but unable to do it because of all the added muscle. Leads to some awkward exchanges with Muta. This is a pretty slow match. Highlight is probably Muta hitting a super Frankensteiner on Scott. Steiner DDT gets the win. What a world where I enjoyed Glacier/Cat vs Mortis/Wrath more than a Steiners vs Chono/Muta match.
Hector Garza/Lizmark Jr./Juventud Guerrera vs La Parka/Psychosis/Villano IV
Lucha fuckery. Villano V ran in to replace IV and lost anyway. Hector managed to not eat shit on the corkscrew plancha, only because there were so many guys to catch him.
Kevin Sullivan vs Chris Benoit Career Match
Finally this will end. This, of course, immediately has fists being thrown and things go to the floor. Jackie keeps getting involved. Benoit throws her vag first at Sullivan. And the weirdest thing about this whole thing is that she's constantly pulling away from Sullivan every time they've been on screen the past 2-3 months. Yet she's here fighting Benoit for him. And now Sullivan is shoving her around. Things head to the beach, because nothing says blood feud like hitting someone with prop surfboards and folding beach chairs. HE THREW HIM INTO A BEACH BALL. Lots of ball work. And Sullivan trying to bite a hole in Benoit's gut. And Benoit trying to bite Sullivan's ear off. Jackie decides to blast Sullivan with a chair. Benoit follows it with a diving headbutt for the win. Kevin Sullivan must retire. Well..that was weird. The end to an 18 month angle that started with Sullivan getting pissed at Arn, then Pillman, then Benoit, then Benoit stealing Woman from him ends at a beach themed show where they threw each other into giant beach balls, and Sullivan's career was ended because his new woman turned on him. And Woman herself straight up disappeared from TV one week and was never mentioned again. It seems very odd to me that such a prolonged blood feud would end without a "he's the better man" type of moment, and the actual thing the feud was centered around (Woman) was quietly removed from TV months ago. And to top it off, it wasn't nearly their best or most violent match. Ended with a dud and weirdness.
Steve McMichael vs Jeff Jarrett WCW US Championship
I hope this is the end of this angle, too. This has only been brewing for about 9 months, with all the development done within the first 3. And here's the thing: Horsemen are faces, except they all turned on Piper. Jarrett is a heel, but he ran in and saved face Piper. Flair is a heel tonight, but Mongo and Benoit are faces. Even Russo didn't make shit so complicated. Mongo out wrestles and out fights Jeff. Just...end this. Everything. End the match. End the feud. End it all. Debra gives Jeff the briefcase. Jeff blasts Mongo in the elbow, then head to win. Title retained. Debra leaves with Jeff. "HUSH MY MOUTH!"
Mean Gene hypes the hotline, then a Rodman/Hogan promo airs.
Scott Hall/Randy Savage vs DDP/Curt Hennig
The perfect partner! Hennig hasn't had a match since the Fall of 1993. Brain says he's in the best shape of his life, which is ridiculous. Better off to just not mention it at all when he's clearly 20 pounds of blubber bigger, with next to no definition compared to even the end of his WWF career. Kind of interesting that Perfect has a history with all 3 other men in the match. DDP and Macho start the match. Macho throws shit and spits and tags are made. Lol, Hall makes fun of Perfect's new gut. Perfect didn't like it. Also lol at Perfect about to say "and that's perfect" after a move, then realizing he can't anymore. DDP ends up as FIP. Then yhey fuck up a spot where DDP was supposed to accidentally low bridge Perfect. Hennig turns on DDP and walks out of the match. Outsider's Edge is followed by an elbow drop. nWo wins again.
Roddy Piper vs Ric Flair
Fuck. Flabby middle aged men jiggling around. I don't want this. I don't want it at all. Flair gets out the traditional NWA taped knux. Piper gets it and hits Piper with it. Mongo and Benoit run out. Mongo hit a tombstone. Everything about this sequence was terrible. 5 dudes out there and none of them were on the same page. And Piper kicked out of it anyway, so it was a big waste of time. Piper wins with the sleeper. After fighting off Benoit and taking the tombstone. He was 43 at the time. 43, well over a decade past his prime, beating Ric Flair clean and fighting off two members of the Horsemen at the same time, both of whom were faces in their own matches earlier in the night, but heels here.
Hulk Hogan/Dennis Rodman vs Lex Luger/Giant
The match we've all been waiting for. Dennis "Bad Boy" "Rod The Bod" "The Worm" "The Dirty Dog" Rodman in a WCW ring. Buffer's intro for Hogan and Rodmaan is ridiculous. So many fucking words. You know what else is ridiculous? This show drew under 8000 people. Fewer people than BATB the year before in the same building. Why are they even running buildings that small for a giant PPV like this? Hogan and Lex begin. How long are they going to hold off on Rodman? I wonder how long they can get away with not having him in before fans start to turn on the match. The answer is about 7 minutes. 7 minutes of Hogan/Lex doing boring test of strength spots to stall for time. When Rodman comes in, he also stalls for minutes. When he finally locks up, Rodman hits a perfect arm drag, which pops EVERYONE. Savage and Hogan, the crowd, and the announcers. Lex then starts throwing arm drags around like he's Ricky Steamboat. Leap frog/shoulder block spot from Rodman! "Somebody call the law! Somebody call the law!" Lex has worked the entire match so far, which is like 12 minutes. Giant tags in and of course starts getting rag tagged by Hogan. Lol. Maybe they shouldn't have continued to build Giant as 7'4" when Rodman was almost eye to eye with him and is under 7 feet. Double hip toss to Giant. Giant gets Rodman up for the chokeslam. A super tall Sting comes out and hits him with a bat. Pretty obvious that's Kevin Nash. He stepped over the fucking rope, and the announcers still thought it was the real Stang. Come on, brehs. Lex gets Hogan to give up to the torture rack. He then puts Rodman in the rack. And then Macho. WCW wins!
Rodman obviously got it. Had he actually stuck with wrestling like Mongo, I'm sure he could have been a top level heel. He was easily the best thing of the main event. The rest of the show was pretty uneven. I think it is fair to say Wrath/Mortis vs Glacier/Cat was the most enjoyable match on the card. All things considered, that doesn't say much for the rest of the show. Rodman was easily the star of the show.