Tuesday, August 5, 2008

WCW SuperBrawl IV

1. Harlem Heat vs. Thunder and Lighting - 4
2. The Equalizer vs. "Jungle" Jim Steele - 3
3. Terry Taylor vs. Diamond Dallas Page - 5
4. Johnny B. Badd vs. Jimmy Garvin - 4
5. Lord Steven Regal vs. Arn Anderson - 8
6. Cactus Jack and Max Payne vs. The Nasty Boys - 6
7. Sting, Brian Pillman, and Dustin Rhodes vs. Paul Orndorff, Rick Rude, and Steve Austin - Thundercage Match - 5
8. Vader vs. Ric Flair - Thundercage Match - 4

It's nearly 4AM as I write this, I've got work later today, and although the memory of this show is barely a week old I've already stuffed so much more information into my brain it feels like my head's a bowl containing chips and dip. So, while I'd really like to pontificate about Martian Manhunter and parallels between McCarthy-era Communism hunting and Killer Klowns from Outer Space I'll just rant about the wrestling.

Harlem Heat carried their opponents to a startlingly decent opener, this was Bobby Hennan's first pay-per-view telecast with WCW and he was on fire, calling Thunder and Lighting "Batman and Robin" to Tony's disbelief. Equalizer would go on to later be Evad Sullivan, yesteryear's Eugene, sans the stained track jacket and hero emulation. I'm not sure what his character was supposed to be here as they certainly weren't bothering developing it. Wow, I think I've found the most fast-paced, enjoyable Terry Taylor match from his WCW stint. Fuck the Red Rooster, you can dazzle me with KFC original recipe seasonings and call me Foghorn Leghorn but I dug this!

Badd and Garvin was a miss, Jimmy had been out of rings for nearly two years, and his return, complete with short hair, was a big letdown. He did some patented Freebird stalling, but the bouncing, curly locks were gone and so was his heart. Regal and Anderson bust out potentially America's MOTY for '94. Regal is selling his ass off, just showing extreme punishment with great, expressive facial sells as Anderson goes to work. Arn's a machine too, daddy, just plying his craft and wowing us like John Coltrane doing a trumpet solo pantsless. This comes seconds away from the thirty-minute time limit in a thrilling finish.

The tag match is one in a string of stiff ones from these two teams, perhaps not as chaotic as some of their more choice brawls, this one's got tons of fun moments like Foley splattering on a concrete floor in a sickening bump and Knobbs nearly having his neck broke in the sickest belly-to-belly suplex these brown eyes done ever saw! The finish, a DQ, is lame and hurts this one's legacy. The two Thundercage matches are supposed to be huge, but don't stand up particularly well against the test of time, as neither tells a particularly great story nor features real special work. The six-man is wild, for sure, and quite fun but not a legitimate classic and will dwell in the shadows of much better War Games matches. The main is skippable, as Flair and Vader had a handful of phenomenal matches, this wasn't one of them, as besides some pretty stiff stuff early, it devolves like Charlie did in the movie Street Fighter when Bison put him in one of those incubation chambers and transformed him into Blanka. In fact, I'd recommend spinning that movie on DVD over this show, but for what its worth, this is a fairly inoffensive Superbrawl but not one to lose sleep over.

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