WCW SuperBrawl 1994
The opening to this show had a weird Ric Flair training montage. His moans/sighs after each rep is very uncomfortable. Liking hearing your parents have sex.
Johnny B. Badd vs Michael Hayes
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. Wait. Michael Hayes's ribs are taped up, and Jimmy Garvin pushes him to ringside in a wheel chair. Mean Gene and Commissioner Bockwinkel ask them what's up. Jimmy and Michael have conflicting stories. Bock decides that Jimmy Jam will replace Michael, and if he doesn't, both men will be suspended. Although Garvin isn't actually on the roster anymore. That match will happen later in the show.
Harlem Heat vs Thunder & Lightning
Imagine High Voltage but 3 years earlier. That seems to be what Thunder & Lightning are. Proto-Power Plant guys. Wait. Is one of these dudes fake Sting? Oh shit, it is! He's Lightning. He and Booker begin. Lol at Booker yelling BITCH when they locked up. Lightning Stink, I predict the SQUEEZE for you. This Thunder dude sucks, though. Just like his namesake show. This is worked as a very, very basic house show style tag match. Not worthy of a PPV, for sure. Tony all but said Thunder & Lightning were local guys in Orlando that they saw while taping Saturday Night. So, local jobbers, basically. There is a split screen showing Arn and Steamboat hanging out with Flair in the back. That bothers me. Arn and Flair should not be hanging out with Steamboat even if they're faces. Stink had Booker rolled up. Stevie stomped his head, which allowed Booker to get the pin.
TO THE MEAN GENE. Gene is outside of Flair's locker room, which is being guarded by police, as is Vader's, due to the tension between the two.
The Equalizer vs Jim Steel
Wow. I thought the first match wasn't PPV worthy. WTF is this shit? The only notable thing about this match is Bobby and Tony talking about Hulk Hogan. Jim won with a Lou Thesz Press, named the Steel Trap. Fuck outta here.
TO THE MEAN GENE. Gene brings out Ricky Steamboat and Nick Bockwinkel. Steamboat wants the winner of Flair/Vader. Flair had already agreed to give him a title shot, but he'll get that shot even if Vader wins.
DDP vs Terry Taylor
WTF this show. The woman with DDP has bigger traps than him. He looks fucking awful. Awful body, awful gear, awful hair, awful face. Dude just looks like shit all around. DDP has an ongoing storyline of having random names to drawn out of a hat for an opponent, but all of the names are guys that were retired or no longer with the company. Terry is doing a bunch of shit he learned in Japan in the G1. Terry works the arm for quite a while until DDP hits a stiff as fuck back elbow to the mouth. The Rooster won with a roll up OUTTA NOWHERE. He was so many leaps and bounds ahead of DDP in this. Dude could still go. This was very basic, and not PPV worthy at all, but still pretty solid.
TO THE MEAN GENE. Gene's guest is Olivier Muffler, a German announcer for WCW programming.
Johnny B. Badd vs Jimmy Garvin
Jimmy Jam hadn't had a match in about a year and a half, having retired to become an airline pilot full time. He's still in pretty good shape. There are tons of reaction shots of PS Cunt shit talking. Man. The Freebirds were out of date as fuck even by the late 80s. It's now 1994 and Michael Hayes' existence on TV at all is so bizarre. A whole lot of arm bars in this. So far, in 1994, Terry Taylor and Jimmy Garvin are the best wrestlers on the card. Johnny wins with a flying sunset flip. Post-match sees Jimmy hit Johnny with the 911, aka the Stone Cold Stunner.
TO THE MEAN GENE. Gene makes his way into Vader's locker room, where Vader is smashing things with a chair. "NO INTERVIEWS!"
Arn Anderson vs Steven Regal WCW TV Championship
FUCK YES. Buffer does the introductions. #bigfightfeel. Regal keeps selling his ear, which is confusing Arn, because it doesn't seem like he did anything to it. Lots of neat grapples in this. It's worked and paced like a 70s match, which is pretty dope to me. I love Regal doing a nip up and Arn just kicking him in the leg. I also love Arn getting face pops for a dirty break in the corner. He was definitely a fully fledged face at the time, but didn't change his style whatsoever. Similar to Flair, really. Fans were hot when this started, but the holds and mat work seems to have had them lose focus. Which is sad. They were more into Johnny/Jimmy than this. Arn goes after the arm, as he tends to do. Regal does mostly wear down holds. After 15 minutes, Arn has controlled most of the match. Regal will need to either make it another 15 minutes, or have a miraculous come back. Sir William gets involved with the umbrella. As they get down to the final minute, both men go into a scramble to get the win. With 6 seconds to go, Regal gets the pin with help from Sir William. Title retained. Wonderful. A 30 minute match with Arn and Regal doing their things. It's not a WOW THIS IS INCREDIBLE type of match, but it is a match that you'd talk about for years if you saw it at a house show.
Cactus Jack/Maxx Payne vs Nasty Boys WCW Tag Team Championships
Knobs comes playing an acoustic guitar. The very first move of the match is Maxx doing a go behind and killing Knobs with a German suplex. SUPLEX CITY, CUNT! This is followed with a CAPTURE SUPLEX to Sags. My man must have been watching Gary Albright. Lmao, URANAGE OUTTA NOWHERE. Nasty Cunts getting bodied out here. Cactus takes the Nestea Plunge. Disgusting. This is what a Nasty Boys match should be, though. If you have to have one. Cactus spits up blood after the plunge. Maxx tries to kill Knobs with a belly to belly that saw Knobs land on his face and shoulder, instantly dislocating his arm. Couldn't have happened to a nicer piece of shit. Nasty Boys get disqualified for hitting Maxx with the guitar.
TO THE MEAN BY GOD GENE. Gene is in the locker room with Flair and Steamboat. Gene brings up Hulk Hogan, who has expressed interest in Flair/Vader tonight. Flair says it would be the biggest match in history, but he's concerned about Vader, and then Steamboat after that.
Rick Rude/Steve Austin/Paul Orndorff vs Sting/Dustin Rhodes/Brian Pillman
Thunderdome Cage Match
Damn, on paper, what an amazing line up. Kind of amazing that, 2 years later, Sting is the only man left standing in WCW. Pillman, Austin, and Dustin would be in the WWF. Rude and Orndorff would be retired. Sting and Rude start out, and Sting gets all up in that ass. Austin blows his knee out doing a leap frog. Why, it was a SWERVE! Austin is the first to go into the cage, and Pillman is the first to get busted open. Rude had been working with a bad back since sometime in late 1992, yet somehow managed to get bigger than ever during this time. Pillman ends up as FIP. Oh shit, BACKDROP DRIVAAAAAAA from Wonderful. Austin was a hell of bumper in his day. I'm not really sure why this is in a cage other than WCW would usually have two cage matches if they had one booked just because during this period. The cage really plays almost no part of the match beyond throwing guys into them, but it might as well have been the guardrail. Same effect, since the Thunder Dome covers all around ringside. Sting throws Pillman at Austin, which is enough to score the win. Rude slammed the door in Sting's face and hit him with the Rude Awakening on the floor after the match. Not as good as you'd hope based on the guys involved, but quite enjoyable.
Vader vs Ric Flair WCW Championship
Thunderdome Cage Match
The (Big) Boss (Man) is the special ref/enforcer for this. Hopefully this match makes more sense than the Starrcade match. I don't want to see Flair out brawling Vader ever again. So of course Flair STARTS the match by pounding Vader down in the corner and stomping a mudhole in him. Jesus. Come on. That's the most unbelievable shit possible. Beats him all around the ring, to the floor, hits him with a chair. Just dominating Vader. WITH PUNCHES. RIC FLAIR. LMAO Vader did the Flair Flip. It takes a while before Vader starts beating Ric's ass. A Flair/Vader match should NEVER EVER EVER have Flair beating up Vader. At any point in the match. The only time Flair should get an advantage over a guy like Vader is by cheap shots or leg work. Harley gets involved to a copious degree, despite the cage. Luckily the bars are so far apart that he can literally headbutt Ric through them. Eventually, Boss Man tries to handcuff him, but Vader attacks him first, so Boss Man ends up cuffed to the cage. Vader gets his night stick. Harley enters the cage. Flair fights off Vader AND Harley as Arn and Steamboat try to get the door opened. Boss Man gets free and hits Vader in the knees with the night stick. Flair locks on a TERRIBLE figure four, and Boss Man immediately calls for the bell. THE ALBANY, GEORGIA SCREWJOB! Title retained. Overbooked horseshit. Can't believe the Vader/Flair matches have the praise they have. They're so fucking backwards and stupid.
This has a very deliberate, steady build. Very traditional card building. Every match has a bigger star and more high spots than the one before it, leading up to the main event, which is essentially the top two stars doing nothing but running through high spots. What this means is that things really don't start picking up until Regal/Arn, but also that everything is booked to the strengths of the people in the ring. As such, that means a show with quite a few shitty talents ends up being pretty solid based on pacing and booking. Have a Jungle Jim/Equalizer match? Make it short so neither have time to get exposed. Have a Nasty Boys match? Make it short and violent. Have DDP/Johnny B. Badd matches? Put them in the ring with long time vets who can guide them along.
Flair/Vader again has awful psychology, with Flair beating the shit out of Vader constantly during the match, and Vader needing tons of interference from Harley to get the advantage. Shit drives me bonkers.