WCW Thunder #10
March 12 1998
So hey, I was supposed to be watching Smackdown but apparently I’ve developed ADD and gave up after the Nakamura/Rusev/R-Truth thing and decided to watch WCW Thunder instead! There are ten matches on this show and it’s barely 80 minutes long. I am fired up for that level of inability to stick with one thing. Just give me a million things, one after another. I want that variety maaaan. Tragically Ernest “The Cat” Miller vs. Glacier didn’t make tape. Hosts are Tony Schiavone, Lee Marshall and The Brain. We’re in Baton Rouge and for some reason I’m really excited to sit through this.
This is the go-home for Uncensored and for some reason Fat Tony is all excited for Hogan vs. Savage headlining the show. Fuck that.
Promo Time: The Giant
Giant’s all mad at Kevin Nash and his neck hurts. He challenges the entire nWo to a fight tonight. You’d think this kind of ballsy approach would lead to Giant scoring a big PPV win for the guts right? Nope, nWo ran in for the DQ at Uncensored. Match barely went five minutes. Meanwhile the Savage vs. Hogan match went to a no contest due to double jobberitis. If you removed all the nWo stuff from these shows they’d be SO much better. Opening promo here degenerates into Savage and Sting figuratively dick measuring and Randy gets a title shot tonight out of it that will definitely end in an nWo run in. However I could totally see Hogan politicking the belt onto Savage here so he could beat him for the title on Sunday.
Brad Armstrong vs. Raven
Raven has read Wikipedia to discover Brad’s career highlights before calling him “mediocre”.
This is Perry Saturn’s “I’m not pulling a face” face. Raven talks for a while, hits the DDT and wins in three seconds. I start singing “Even Flow” by Pearl Jam in celebration of the great man and his wonderous achievements in pro-wrestling. Best of which being; walking out on WCW.
Final Rating: HA
Promo Time: Chris Jericho
Jericho is about to hit PEAK Jericho. He comes out here sporting Juvi’s mask and launches into a delightful promo. He’s started the “1004 Holds” thing. Jericho states he’s beating Malenko and insisting he change the Texas Cloverleaf to the “Canadian Jericholeaf”. This was literally the best year of Jericho’s career and he spent a good chunk of it being a total asshat.
Kendall Windham vs. Jim Duggan
What the fuck is this? Barry’s shitty brother versus a very over the hill Duggan, running a gimmick that’s very outdated. Kendall stayed in WCW almost to the end because they didn’t want to release anyone in case the WWF signed them and used them effectively. Duggan is pretty much here as a favour to Hogan. The match is as dreadful as you’d expect. Duggan is completely finished as a worker at this point. He’s got NOTHING and Kendall never had anything. The only good thing about the match is that Duggan is blind so he stiffs Kendall on the clotheslines. The match is fucking awful though. Awful.
Final Rating: DUD
Scott Steiner vs. Johnny Grunge
My level of excitement for this is unreasonably high as I want to see Steiner absolutely fucking mangle Grunge, who’s one of the worst workers to ever feature in a major promotion.
Scott makes me sad by going soft on Johnny despite Grunge taking horrible bumps for him. Did he think this was a fucking house show or something? Scott, freshly minted as a heel, gives Grunge waaaay too much. Grunge gets tabled and the Steiner Recliner finishes. This should have been a fantastic laugh but Scott ruined it. You murder people like this Scott. Murder them.
Final Rating: DUD
Eddie Guerrero vs. Chavo Guerrero
It’s always weird hearing Eddie just talk normally and not with that accent WWE made him do. Here he’s all mad at Chavo for failing so he’s going to take the TV title off Booker on Sunday to show him. Any hopes you may have of this bout saving the show should be abandoned immediately. It gets off to a wild start with dives and false finishes, like they’re trying to do a five minute match in a minute. Because they are. Frogsplash finishes. The match was maybe 90 seconds long. On the Thunder scale it was pretty good though and it set up the whole Los Guerreros association in WCW.
Final Rating: **1/2
Promo Time: Hollywood Hogan/Scott Hall/Eric Bischoff
If I have to listen to another nWo promo I may puke. At least Hall is out here to deliver something a little offbeat about how he hates “controversy”. Bischoff’s promos don’t click with me at all. You’re a middle aged man with a backwards baseball cap on trying to be cool as if Hogan, with his porange skin and 80s pose downs are cool. Not for me brother.
Konnan vs. Lizmark Jr
What have I done to deserve this? Luckily it’s really short but it’s so bad. Konnan botches a German suplex so badly he almost pins himself. They screw up the spot after that and then Konnan finishes with Tequila Sunrise. Absolute shit. Fuck you Konnan.
Final Rating: DUD
Promo Time: Curt Hennig/Rick Rude
Both are in the nWo. Do you think they ran that angle into the ground? No wonder it burned out so damn quickly. The only interesting claim here is that Rude suggests he attacked Bret Hart when he joined WCW because Shawn Michaels paid him off. Which does connect with his run in DX as their ring announcer. Hennig’s WCW promos always struck me as him running on autopilot.
Saturn vs. Disco Inferno
Saturn is really good. Disco is not. His near misses in this are embarrassing. He’s so late. Like he wants to make sure Saturn is a mile out of the way before he even tries to hit something. Saturn gets fed up with the whole thing and stops trying to have a good match. He keeps the pace fast but you can tell from his execution that he’s done trying to make Disco look good. Everything Saturn does is so crisp compared to the hokey shit Disco does. Rings of Saturn finishes. Disco kept up, pace wise, but his inability to take a decent bump hurt this so much.
Final Rating: *3/4
The Giant vs. The nWo
This is eight on one. I’m surprised the nWo only has eight wrestlers in the building tonight. I’m also shocked the nWo stand on the apron and make tags. Giant actually gets put over big here, which makes a change. He decks everyone and powerbombs Konnan, which leads to a DQ as powerbombs were illegal at the time in WCW. Holy shit, this segment was actually good! Of course they ruined it all by having the PPV stink and go to another DQ but there was hope here and I love me some hope.
Final Rating: **
Dean Malenko vs. “Chris Jericho”
Jericho looks a little rough, even attempting to do his own poses. Texas Cloverleaf finishes in about a minute and Malenko is declared as champion but when Jericho is unmasked it’s Lenny Lane. So Malenko didn’t win the title because it wasn’t Jericho! Ingenious! Like I said earlier; Jericho was terrific during this run. Malenko would eventually get him back with a similar trick, which means they actually saw an angle through to conclusion? Nah, that can’t be right.
Final Rating: NR (squash but great angle)
Scott Norton vs. Lex Luger
Norton was actually good in NJPW but not here. Luger was actually good. Earlier in his career. So you’ve got an unmotivated Norton against an unmotivated Luger in a match that means nothing and no one can win. Norton won’t even take bumps here. He just kind of drops slightly. Scott Steiner runs in for the DQ but Rick Steiner makes the save. Oh god, this angle was terrible. It went on forever and almost derailed Scott as an actual star.
Final Rating: DUD
WCW World Championship
Sting (c) vs. Randy Savage
The nWo just did a run-in for a match to save Scott Norton from a job. What are the chances of them letting this go down clean? Sting and Savage are perfectly aware of what a total sham of a match this is and go straight to the finish. Sting doesn’t even take his coat off. Naturally the nWo run in for the DQ. People who wonder why I hate big heel stables and repeated bullshit finishes – blame the fucking nWo.
Final Rating: -**
The rot has set in. The clowns are running the circus. Constant run in’s. Bad wrestlers everywhere. The few shining lights of the show (Jericho, Malenko, Raven, Saturn, Guerreros and yes, even the Giant) would all eventually leave for greener pastures in the WWF because no one ever got pushed and the Hogan ceiling prevented anyone getting over enough to challenge his position. Everyone protecting their spots. Shit show.