Tuesday, September 11, 2012

WCW Road Wild 1999

Being the big WCW fan that I am, I can never pass up the opportunity to score an old WCW VHS tape. This particular tape I found this tape stuffed in the corner of a booth at the local flea market behind some old mid-90s WWF action figures. A mere five dollars later and it was mine, all mine. After getting home, I dusted off the ol’ VCR and popped this bad boy in. Let’s see what’s contained within.

Before talking about any matches, I have to comment first on how ridiculous the WCW announce crew looks dressed in biker apparel. Schiavone and Tenay look like complete fools, while Heenan has this look on his face like “why the fuck am I wearing this?”

1) Vampiro & Insane Clown Posse vs. Eddie Guerrero, Billy Kidman, & Rey Mysterio – 4

First out of the gate we get the ICP, who are completely out of place at a biker rally. Who knows, maybe they were scouting locations for their next Juggalo gathering. Wearing hockey jerseys and face paint makes them look like low-level indy schmucks. Mysterio took a couple gnarly bumps, including a toss powerbomb where he went halfway across the ring and a “Vampiro Spike”, as Heenan called it, on the floor. Eddie busted out a sick superplex on Shaggy. Everyone played it pretty safe it felt like. Kidman contributed next to nothing except for getting the hot tag and scoring the pinfall. This was a fun way to get the show started and kept a good pace throughout.

2) Bam Bam Bigelow & Kanyon vs. Harlem Heat – 3

This was decent, but definitely felt more like a Nitro main event than a pay-per-view tag title match. Bigelow looked awful in pretty much everything he did. Wrestling the match in a t-shirt didn’t help matters any either. I think I’d rather listen to Stevie Ray talk about “fruitbooties” and ask questions like “What’s Kronik doing in a juke joint?” on commentary than watch him wrestle. He seemed completely emotionless during the whole match. Maybe he had other things on his mind like who was going to win the funny car races that weekend. Booker and Kanyon meshed pretty well and held things together.

3) Curt Hennig, Bobby Duncum Jr., & Barry Windham vs. Shane Douglas, Dean Malenko, & Perry Saturn – 4

This is the third straight match where someone (Barry Windham) is wrestling in either a t-shirt or jersey. I hope that’s an ongoing theme during this show. Duncum may not have done much in WCW but I will forever like him now as he popped the asswad known as Shane Douglas hard in the mouth with one of the stiffest boots to the face I’ve ever seen. Hopefully that shut Douglas up for a while. This match had a completely different feel than the other tag bouts thus far. It felt more like a wild brawl than a formulaic six-man tag. I was surprised that in ’99 Hennig was still doing his crazy bumping and selling exactly like he did in ’90 and ’91. Douglas worked nearly the whole match for his team and I don’t think Malenko even got tagged in. As much as I hate to say it, Windham was probably the worst performer of the whole match and looked really out of shape. Sad really as this was probably the last high-profile match he had.

4) Buff Bagwell vs. The Cat – 2

Talk about a major waste of time. Just driving aimlessly around my neighborhood would be a more exciting venture than watching this match. I never was a big fan of Bagwell and I wasn’t looking forward to watching this at all. There was lots of bullshit including The Cat jawing with the fans before and during the majority of the match. Sonny Onoo, who accompanied The Cat ringside, looked like a World War II kamikaze pilot. These guys worked as well together as peanut butter and mayonnaise. A shitty roll up from an ultra telegraphed finish polished this one off.

5) Diamond Dallas Page vs. Chris Benoit  - No DQ Match – 5

Looking at this on paper, it certainly has the potential to be the best match on the card. However, I think I may have held it to some pretty lofty expectations. I liked the fight on the floor to start and the baseball slide dropkick that started it off caught DDP pretty hard. The spinebuster that DDP busted out was so crisp it looked like one out of the Arn Anderson playbook. One segment of this match that some people may find disturbing is that Benoit was choked and strangled with a belt during the match. I’m not going to throw any jokes in here about the whole Benoit situation five years ago but suffice to say that some people who were disturbed by what Benoit did, may find that segment a bit hard to watch. Match had a few good nearfall segments but the ending here hurt this with lots of interference from Kanyon and Bam Bam Bigelow. A fine match but a match that I definitely was expecting a bit more out of.

6) Sid Vicious vs. Sting – 3
7) Rick Steiner vs. Goldberg – 3

 These next two matches I’ll talk about in a group simply because neither of them had anything that really stood out and my notes on them are only a few lines each. For your fun fact of the day, this was the third time that Sting and Sid fought on WCW pay-per-view with Sting winning both prior times. Brawl at the beginning of this was pretty uninspired and weak. Sting barely got any offense in the whole match and Sid pretty much coasted. Some really bad work by Sid no-selling a nut shot and then popping up immediately after a big superplex to go right into the corner to get in position for Sting to give him the Stinger splash. Steiner and Golderg was only about five minutes long and featured Rick Steiner using Goldberg’s knee brace as a blatant weapon throughout the whole match. Goldberg’s spear was pretty awesome but that was about the only highlight.

 8) Dennis Rodman vs. Randy Savage – 3

Well, this show has certainly started to fall off a cliff in terms of quality. I’ve heard stories about how bad this match really is but I haven’t seen it personally since the last time I rented the tape in the video store nearly eight years ago. Savage looked so roided up here is wasn’t even funny. The announcers were flipping their collective lids when Rodman executed some of the most basic moves. Three minutes in and the bullshit begins, first there’s a ref bump, and then another, and then another. Three ref bumps in five minutes? Sure, why the hell not. Of course, there has to be a brawl that turns out rather shitty when Rodman gets stuffed in Port-A-Potty and Savage tips it over. The end was lame with yet another ref bump (that’s four if your counting) and then blatant interference from Gorgeous George who gives Savage a chain to KO Rodman and end this abomination. I give this points mainly for sheer entertainment value because the backstage brawl was pretty fun. Would I want to watch this again? Not really. Would I prefer to watch this over Bagwell/Cat or Sid/Sting? Actually I would.

9) Hulk Hogan vs. Kevin Nash – Retirement Match – 3

Main event time and was it ever bad. Nash was holding some of the weakest headlocks I’ve ever seen executed inside a ring. Hell, I’ve seen better headlocks on episodes of COPS. Watching this I was having flashbacks to Hogan vs. Sid at WrestleMania 8 with the knuckle locks and the hard lock-ups and shoving each other in the corner. Both guys offense was awful, especially Nash who was throwing really weak elbows in the corner. Hogan moved with all the agility of a brick wall. I chuckled when I noticed Nash taking a page out of his buddy Triple H’s playbook and selling punches by doing the “hair whip”. Best offensive move of the match was Nash delivering a stiff Jackknife Powerbomb. For a match where the career of both guys was on the line, it certainly didn’t have the feel of two guys fighting for their livelihood. Instead it felt more like a run-of-the-mill match with two old guys doing an exhibiton of their famous spots.

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