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WCW Monday Nitro - October 12, 1998

by Samoa Rowe

-Eric Bischoff is in full-blown tyrant mode and instructs building employees and security to keep Ric Flair from entering the arena.

-From Chicago, IL. Our hosts are Tony Schiavone, MikeTenay, and Larry Zbyszko . They discuss the ongoing storylines as the Nitro Girls dance. They show a bunch of video recaps that have been clipped out of the tape I’m watching.

-The official Nitro opening video just reeks of awesome 90’s nostalgia. Something better happen soon, because the fans can only entertain themselves for so long.

Lodi vs. Wrath

Lodi poses with a fan sign, allowing Wrath to take control with a clothesline. Wrath dominates with a flying shoulder block. The Pump Handle Slam ends it at 1:03. That was quite the squash, the fans responded well to it.
Winner: Wrath

-Meng storms into the arena and initiates a brawl with Wrath. The camera cuts away for more video recaps!

Kendall Windham vs. Dale Torborg

Ugh, this is why three hour TV programs are a bad idea. Windham drops an elbow off the apron. By the way, what the hell kind of name is “Kendall?” Windham delivers a back suplex and applies a chinlock. Torborg kicks out of a big boot, allowing time for more rest holds! There is an audible “Goldberg” chant as the match plods on. Torborg makes a basic comeback, but Windham cuts him off with a neck breaker. Torborg falls down delivering a bicycle kick for the win at 4:19. This was an embarrassing mess, DUD.
Winner: Dale Torborg

-They fill time with a commercial for WCW Magazine, more Nitro Girls dancing, and footage from the “Nitro Party” winner. And I thought I was a wrestling nerd.

-Last week, DDP was assaulted by Raven and his minions. Goldberg ran in and helped Page clear the ring. Goldberg and Page then stood nose to nose, as Page is the next challenger for the World title.

-Sting, dressed in his n.W.o red and black attire, comes to the ring to talk. Stings calls both Bret Hart and Hollywood Hogan out. He’s interrupted by none other than the Warrior, and I can’t understand a word he says (Editor's Note: seek not to understand these ways, for you are one of the normals). The gist is Warrior respects Sting and thinks they should team up against their mutual enemies.

-Another hype video for Goldberg vs. DDP. I’ll give them credit, they seemed more interesting in selling Halloween Havoc ‘98 than WWE selling Night of Champions or Battleground in 2013.

-Eric Bischoff leads Hollywood Hogan and The Giant to the ring. They bask in their own greatness for bit too long. Hogan promises that The Giant will take the WCW title from Goldberg in tonight’s No DQ match because that’s the way he wants it to be. Hogan refers to Warrior and Sting as “cartoon characters” and books himself and Bret Hart against them later on. Good mic work from Hogan here, as the n.W.o. hadn’t lost their cool yet.

-Eric Bischoff returns backstage and is informed that the Four Horsemen have arrived, which sets him into a panic. He storms into the back lot, where a limo is pulling up. Security surrounds the limo to prevent Flair and his entourage from entering. They have the building owner with them and security has no choice but to let the Four Horsemen in. Bischoff threatens a lawsuit against the owner AND his mother.

Fit Finlay vs. Alex Wright

These guys are feuding over who is the best European wrestler in WCW. Wright cuts a promo before the match to annoy the fans with his accent. Wright accuses Finlay of ending his father’s career and vows revenge. Their fight quickly spills to ringside, where Finlay drives Wright into the apron. Back to the ring, Wright delivers a clothesline and power slam, but Finlay bounces back with a fireman’s carry onto the ropes. Finlay flies into Wright’s boot. Wright counters with a throw onto the ropes. Wright steals the pin with his feet on the ropes at 2:00. Painfully short match here, they had no time to develop their story, ½*.
Winner: Alex Wright

-Fellow European wrestler, The British Bulldog, storms in and attacks Wright. The fans don’t seem to care.

La Parka, Ciclope, and Villano V vs. Super Calo, Psychosis, and Chavo Guerrero Jr.

The luchadors are making their entrance when the camera cuts to the Four Horsemen in their skybox. Super Calo and La Parka kick things off with a fast exchange. La Parka accidentally clocks Villano, giving Super Calo the chance for a flying cross body. La Parka and Villano have another miscue, allowing Calo to deliver a senton off the apron. Psychosis, Ciclope, and Guerrero all nail springboard moves to the floor. Psychosis is late with a guillotine leg drop to save his teammate from a cover, but the referee was nice enough to stop counting. La Park slams Psychosis for 2, but the match breaks down. They follow the lucha tradition of not making tags and bodies go flying every which way. Psychosis is the last man standing and nails a top rope senton to Ciclope on the floor! Eddy Guerrero leads the l.W.o to the ring, as Chavo nails a tornado DDT for the win at 5:28. The match was a complete train wreck, *.
Winners: Super Calo, Psychosis, and Chavo Guerrero Jr.

-Eddy Guerrero gets on the microphone and is upset that management keeps making the Latinos fight each other. Eddy would like to see any n.W.o. member do what his nephew, Chavo, can do the ring. Eddy basically declares war against Eric Bischoff.

-It’s time for the Nitro Girls to dance again! Chae gets a solo. I thought it was important for you to know this (Editor's Note: it is)

-Scott Steiner comes to the ring. He’s sick of people riding other people for their success, like his brother, Rick, and the local sports team. Scott declares that Chicago sucks, and wouldn’t you know it, that statement gets just the reaction from the fans he was looking for! Steiner turns his attention to his other arch-enemy, Judy Bagwell. Scott says he got Buff Bagwell to agree to keep his mother where she belongs (in the kitchen) so things are cool between them. I guess Scott was wrong, because he’s joined by Buff and Judy Bagwell. Buff says Scott is wrong, they have a serious problem. Scott says the only problem is that he could break Buff’s neck at any moment. The camera catches Judy cleaning her ear while Buff puts over his dear mother. Buff wants to wrestle Steiner right now, but Judy doesn’t think that’s a good idea. Scott threatens to slap Judy, prompting Buff to attack. Scott quickly drops Buff off his feet and celebrates his douchebaggery. Who thought this angle was a good idea?

-The Four Horsemen are having a lovely time in their skybox.

Juventud Guerrera vs. Prince Iaukea

Juvie has circus music, which must be somebody’s idea of a rib. Disco Inferno stops the match from starting, claiming that everyone is here to watch him dance. He gets knocked off the apron and the match finally begins. Iaukea and Juvie have a fast-paced exchange. Juvie breaks a chinlock and drops Iaukea face-first on the mat. Iaukea blocks a drop-kick and hits a snap suplex. Disco sneaks back into the arena as Juvie tries to build some steam. Missile drop-kick by Guerrera, but he’s distracted by Disco, who thwarts a 450 splash. Iaukea clocks Disco, but gets caught in the Juvie Driver for the loss at 3:57. Another hideously rushed match, ½*.
Winner: Juventud Guerrera

-Cruiserweight Champion Billy Kidman runs in and chases Disco up the ramp. They cut to a commercial right away.

-It’s Kevin Nash’s turn to talk in the ring. Nash says he’s sick of watching Scott Hall stumble around out back. Nash reminds us he used to be a bouncer, so he’s really good at beating up drunks, and invites Hall to the ring for his “last call.” Hall wanders into the arena, selling his drunkenness. Hall doesn’t want to fight Nash in the ring, he wants a backstage brawl! Nash chases Hall to the back and into the parking lot. They have a hilariously bad chase scene, with Hall hanging out of a limo as Nash pursues right behind them. I swear, this show cannot do anything without embarrassing themselves.

-WCW TV Champion Chris Jericho comes to the ring, and for the first time in over an hour, I feel a sense of hope.

Chris Jericho vs. Raven

They lock up and get a clean break. They lock up again and tumble to the floor. Jericho drives Raven into the steel barricade and grabs a chair. Raven drop-kicks the chair into Jericho’s face and sets it in the turnbuckle. Jericho reverses an Irish whip, sending Raven crashing into the chair. Jericho misses a head of steam and collides with the ring post. Raven stands a chair and delivers a NASTY drop toe hold onto it. Jericho comes back with the Liontamer for the win at 3:08. This was by far the three most entertaining minutes of this show thus far, *.
Winner: Chris Jericho

-Gene Okerlund hosts the “Shank of the Evening” segment, with special guest, Rick Steiner. Rick doesn’t feel bad about facing his brother at Halloween Havoc, but he’s interrupted by none other than CHUCKY THE DOLL on the big screen! And get this, Chucky CUTS A PROMO AGAINST RICK AND GENE! Chucky gets to do love scenes with Jennifer Tillie, so who’s the real dummy? Rick challenges Chucky to bring his “raggedy rear end” to the ring for, um, a fight, I guess? Rick stays in character throughout and treats Chucky as if he’s absolutely real. Chucky advertises his new movie, Bride of Chucky, and threatens them to stay away from Scott Steiner, who will be the lead in his next movie. Chucky laughs maniacally as Rick has no choice but to let this go. This is quite honestly, one of the greatest things I’ve ever seen.

Chuck on Nitro

-Eric Bischoff comes back to the ring for more blah blah blah. As WCW President, he is the true owner of the arena tonight, and calls out the Dillons. He instructs them to accompany him in crashing the party in the skybox. This leads to a confrontation at the skybox door, with the hapless building owner trying to calm down Eric. A fight breaks out, with a wave of security swarming over Bischoff. This is such a colossal waste of time. At some point, Bischoff convinced himself that his misadventures were more entertaining than, you know, wrestling matches. Ric Flair dances in celebration of Bischoff’s humiliation. Seriously though, this segment goes on for a frickin’ eternity. I think they should bring Chucky back out.

The Giant vs. WCW World Champion Goldberg

They lock up and Giant backs Goldberg into the corner for a slap. The Giant throws a drop-kick, and takes control with knee strikes. Side Russian Leg sweep by The Giant. Goldberg reverses, slamming Giant’s skull into the turnbuckles! Big power slam by Goldberg! Stevie Ray sneaks in and nails a chair shot, which Goldberg no-sells. The Giant nails a choke slam, but DDP runs in and prevents a cover. Diamond Cutter on Stevie Ray! Goldberg saves Page from a Giant choke slam with the spear! Goldberg wins via count-out at 2:45. This was entertaining crap, ¾*.
Winner: Goldberg

-The Nitro Girls dance yet again. Michael Buffer is here for ring announcements, which is another expense that WCW did not have to make.

Hollywood Hogan and U.S. Champion Bret Hart vs. Sting and Warrior

Schiavone does a nice job putting over the historical importance of Sting and Warrior teaming up again for the first time in 12 years. Sting starts against Hogan in a clunky exchange of punching and clothes lining. Hart is a bit hesitant to make a tag and gets overwhelmed by Sting. Hogan sneak attacks, allowing a blind low blow by Bret, turning the momentum to the n.W.o.’s favor. Bret taunts Warrior as Hogan delivers a second low blow to poor Sting. Hogan and Hart effectively isolate Sting for a short while. Bret misses an elbow drop, allowing a tag to Warrior, who cleans house with the only move he knows: a clothesline. Hogan punches Warrior from behind, but it’s no-sold. The n.W.o. troops run in for the non-finish at 5:40. The ring fills with “mysterious smoke” and Warrior is able to escape with his life in tact. Sting single handedly defeats the n.W.o. with the help of his trusty baseball bat. Typically crappy Nitro main event here, ½*.
Winners: NO ONE

Final Thoughts: When the highlight of the show is Chucky the doll exchanging threats with Rick Steiner, you know your show sucks. To WCW’s credit, all of the top guys come across as big time rock stars, but sadly Nitro felt like classic rock compared to the WWF’s “heavy metal” at the time. Also, everything, and I mean EVERYTHING, on this episode was complete garbage, void of any (positive) entertainment value. Thumbs down.

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