- SuperBrawl became the first WCW PPV of the 1990’s to draw 10,000 fans to an arena.
- Muta was in the audience at SuperBrawl to begin the slow build to the “World Cup of Wrestling”, WCW vs. New Japan in the fall.
- Vader refused to be pinned by Hulk Hogan at SuperBrawl because he has the UWFI World title and that organization is trying to claim to be a shoot so having their champ lose to a phony wrestler would reflect poorly on them.
- The planned finish for Hogan/Vader was both men getting bloody and having a violent brawl to set up the “Uncensored” gimmick. This was cancelled after a newspaper column from Phil Mushnick exposed some of the seedier behind the scenes things going on and linked Ted Turner’s name to it. Not wanting anymore heat, WCW censored itself.
- Hogan earned over $650,000 for his cut of SuperBrawl’s live gate and PPV buyrate.
- The cruiserweight tournament has been pushed back due to lack of talent signed.
- WCW is targeting early summer for its MMA PPV. Rickson Gracie is now out of the picture after asking for too much money to be the organizer and now Bischoff is talking to K-1 kickboxing.
- Rumors are flying that a new Four Horsemen would be formed. Ric Flair and Arn Anderson would be locks, with Vader, Steve Austin, Tully Blanchard, Curt Hennig and Dustin Rhodes possibly filling out the ranks.
- Ric Flair quit as booker in early April after Hogan refused to work the final two weeks of TV tapings prior to Uncensored and Macho Man tried to get creative control of his own programs too. Flair came back to the job a few days later.
- Max Muscle has been signed in order to really up the workrate. The Road Warriors and Steiner Brothers are both still expected to come in soon. The Road Warriors were originally going to be Hogan’s surprise at Uncensored but Hawk has prior bookings. Mike Enos, Wayne Bloom and Jim Powers are all looking for a contract.
- Vince McMahon sent Ted Turner a letter with an article from TV Guide condoning Mean Gene using wrestler’s deaths to make money for his hotline. McMahon told Turner WCW was hurting the Turner brand and he should shut it down.
- Smoky Mountain Wrestling recently had a jobber with a gimmick making fun of WCW on their TV, so WCW billed a jobber from “Smoky Mountain, Tennessee” and had Vader kill him.
- Bobby Eaton and Lord Steven Regal had a TV match where Regal was so impressed by Eaton’s performance that he quit mid-match and asked Eaton to form a team, and with that the “Blue Bloods” were born.
At this point, WCW held it’s next PPV “Uncensored”. I covered that PPV a few years ago, so here’s my rundown if you care to read it:
- Dustin Rhodes, The Blacktop Bully and WCW agent Mike Graham were all fired due to blading being done by the men at Uncensored – Graham had approved it without asking his bosses.
- Dusty Rhodes nearly quit out of frustration from Graham and Dustin’s firing. Dusty felt it was a set up from higher up. Hogan had bladed at a house show only two weeks earlier and received no flak.
- Dusty is the feature name of the 1995 WCW Hall of Fame ceremony and Ric Flair wants to do bring him back for another in ring run, so making amends is the best move for both WCW and Dusty.
- Uncensored did a huge buyrate, netting Hogan a payoff of over $700,000.
- WCW higher ups were told to make the product more kid friendly, so Hogan is expected to get an even bigger push (is that possible?) and the heels will largely have little means to get serious heat as they will be designed to be foil for the faces now.
- Hogan is suppose to skip the June PPV “The Great American Bash” so booker Ric Flair planned on a Sting, Macho Man and Road Warriors vs. Four Horsemen main event. Fast forward a few weeks and Hogan vetoed this plan, proposing instead that Flair turn face and team with him. The Horsemen idea has been killed off completely.
- WCW is trying to bring Elizabeth in to take part in a Flair/Savage feud.
- Legendary promoter Jim Barnett and several other WCW officials were fired in cost cutting moves as Turner wants to buy more stations and can’t have WCW’s money losing albatross slow him down.
- Jerry Jarrett has been signed as a “consultant” and his USWA promotion will now be used as a WCW training ground. This creates a unique situation as the WWF sends talent to the USWA frequently as well.
- Joey Maggs, Steve Keirn, Brad Armstrong, Steve Austin and Brutus Beefcake were told they were being cut. . Beefcake was shocked to been given his notice. A few days later Flair and Hogan went to bat for Austin and Beefcake and both appear safe for now.
- Vader was stripped of the US title after he and Flair brutally attacked Dave Sullivan. A tournament is in the works to crown Sting as the new champ.
- The Renegade had his tassels removed and was told to stop shaking the ropes after the WWF sent a legal notice over WCW stealing the Ultimate Warrior’s gimmick. Renegade has been struggling to even work 30 seconds squash matches without blowing spots. His promos have also been a disaster with it taking up to two dozen takes and constant reduction in lines to get something usable from him.
- Steve Austin refused to lose to Renegade on TV, and the mid carders who had already been in WCW (Pillman, Regal, Badd etc) saw this as a heroic stand since so many talent-less roid heads and old men have been signed in the past year to replace them. Austin’s critics have deemed him colorless, Badd has had his entrance toned down and Pillman has been in limbo for over a year.
- Austin had a meeting with Bischoff and ended up doing jobs for Renegade and Macho Man on TV. Rumors are the Hollywood Blonds would be reunited and pushed as a make good to Austin for losing.
- All weapon shots, except for fake gimmick chairs, are now banned on WCW TV.
- The Eliminators (John Kronus and Perry Saturn) were given a tryout.
- William “Refrigerator” Perry retired from the NFL and sent out feelers to WCW and other places to become a wrestler. WCW turned him down.
- David Crockett is being used for international TV as an announcer. This is his first on air role in 6 years.
- Jimmy Hart learned just before going to the ring for the Slamboree main event that his mother died in a car accident. He didn’t say a word to Hulk Hogan or Macho Man out of fear it would lessen their performance.
- Gordon Solie quit WCW over his disagreements over inducting Big John Studd into the WCW Hall of Fame after major news outlets had recently covered how steroids aiding in his death. He was talked back to work soon after.
- The Patriot was scheduled to work the undercard of Slamboree, except no one bothered to check with him as he had prior commitments in Japan. The Blue Bloods replaced Stars and Stripes at the last minute.
- Heenan tried to get himself put in the Hall of Fame but had to concede to a promise that they would do it next year.
- Vader taped an appearance on the sitcom “Boy Meets World”
Eric Bischoff, The Brain and Mean Gene run down the card to kick things off,
World Tag champions Harlem Heat vs. The Nasty Boyz
Ugh, how many times can two teams face off without ever having a good match. Knobbs is hurt, so Saggs comes down alone. Saggs goes after both men and is able to control the action early on. He flat out strikes Sherri in the face for climbing up on the ring – that’s uncomfortable to watch. Saggs downs Booker T and delivers a top rope flying elbow but Stevie Ray and Sherri both aid in breaking up the pin attempt that followed. Heat take over and slow things down for several minutes before Saggs hits a desperation piledriver.
Knobbs charges out at this point, tags in and goes GONZO on the champions with forearms, punches and slams. Sherri jumps at Knobbs from the top rope but Knobbs catches her and delivers a violent spinebuster. Then he sloppily scoops Sherri up and tosses her to the floor on Ray, who fails to properly catch her. Sherri’s legs are grabbed and Ray essentially powerbombs her to the cement. A nasty looking bump. Knobbs powerslams T and Saggs hits a flying elbow for a 3 count at 10:52 as the crowd goes wild! The heel heat segment was a bore, but that ending was a hot one.
The Blue Bloods appear and look on at the Nasties in disgust.
Kevin Sullivan and Mean Gene do a strange interview segment, Mean Gene called him “my friend” and Sullivan was acting more wacked out than usual.
The Man With No Name vs. Kevin Sullivan
Bischoff applauds Beefcake’s recent roid use. Crowd doesn’t respond to the Butcher Barber. Beefcake goes right at Sullivan with his full array of punches and uhhh punches. A sleeper is locked in around the two minute mark, but Sullivan escapes with a sloppy jawbreaker. Sullivan takes over with a plethora of chops before The Booty Zodiac starts to no sell them and piledrives the devil. Beefcake tries a corner splash and accidentally bounces his head off the steel post instead. A Tree of Woe knee finishes the Butcher in 5:45. BAD BAD BAD match
THE MASTER debuts on the big screen and spews a bunch of nonsense as Sullivan freaks out and runs into the crowd.
Hogan and Savage scream about Vader and Ric Flair. They swam to the arena through an ocean of sharks, Hogan has a new vein popping from his roids, Macho Man’s secret weapon is Slim Jims.
The camera switches to black and white for our legends match: “Chief” Wahoo McDaniel vs. “Dirty” Dick Murdoch
Murdoch is coming off an unlikely mini-run in the WWF here and would be among the last people you’d guess would’ve been on both a WWF and WCW PPV in 1995. Murdoch is in his late 40’s here, Wahoo is about 56. Wahoo works some slow motion arm drags. Murdoch gets in some armwork before McDaniel introduces him to a hard chop. Murdoch avoids the Chief as best he can but he’s eventually trapped in a top wristlock. They trade some nice looking shots back and forth in the corner and Murdoch has a busted lip from the exchange. Murdoch grinds into McDaniel for a bit before he eats a hard chop and is pinned out of nowhere at 6:18. Match was fun to watch for nostalgic purposes but it wasn’t very good.
What a random match. Mr. Wonderful tells Muta to kiss his ass. Muta uses his agility to smack Orndorff with a flying kick. They work a “methodical” match, sitting in arm locks, headlocks and other such rest holds to eat up time. The crowd starts a “boring” chant, but they lose interest in that almost as quickly as they lost interest in this match. Orndorff delivers a nice looking back suplex, then uses a cord to choke Muta on the floor. Muta is locked in a chinlock to drag things out. A front facelock fails to pick up the pace. Nothing is happening…Orndorff goes for the piledriver, but Muta escapes and begins to use his martial arts kicks and nails a moonsault to get the win in 14:10 of non-action. Surprise DUD of the night.
Vader, Ric Flair and Arn Anderson talk smack towards Macho Man, Hogan and Alex Wright.
TV champion Arn Anderson vs. Alex Wright
Wright does some flips around Anderson to confuse him, then catches him with a dropkick. Wright outsmarts Anderson again and delivers an enziguri. One more go around sees Wright flip out of Anderson’s grip and dropkicks him. An STF wears down the champion further. The Enforcer eats some European uppercuts and mistakenly runs into a steel ringpost when things spill to the floor. Wright avoids several more moves Anderson attempts but finally is caught with a spinebuster. Anderson grinds into his rookie challenger, working over his limbs but Wright is feisty and continues to fight back before the champ drops him with a DDT out of nowhere and retains his title at 11:34. The match told a good story of rookie with heart vs. crusty vet, but the match itself was perfunctory in execution overall.
Road Warrior Hawk vs. Meng
These two had an incident on the pre-show to set up this unannounced match. Meng hacks away at Hawk with kicks before delivering a piledriver. Hawk pops right up from that, only to miss a charge and he ends up going splat on the floor. Meng kicks away at Hawk and delivers a back breaker, which wakes Hawk up for a flurry of punches. Hawk chucks Meng to the mat but misses a top rope dive and the men spill to the floor. Both men are counted out at 4:40. They were setting up bigger things for the long term here, but this wasn’t exactly a barn burner.
WCW Hall of Fame Ceremony
Wahoo McDaniel is up first and he thanks the fans and name drops all the legends he faced. Terry Funk gives his parents and Dory Jr some love in his brief speech. Angelo Poffo’s bio doesn’t compare well to the first few shown, he just wishes the MegaPowers well for their match later on. Antonio Inoki gets a well earned spot. Big John Studd’s bio makes it sound like he earned his Hall of Fame spot by being a nice guy. Dusty Rhodes gets a big pop for his induction. Cody Rhodes makes his PPV debut here. Gordon Solie then gets a “surprise” induction.
“Lights Out” match: Sting vs, Big Bubba Rogers
Sting carries a table to the ring and tosses it in. They stall to start. Bubba mocks Sting’s howls. Rogers chokes Sting with a tie. Sting is sent to the floor and introduced to the stairs. Bubba’s face is slammed into the table, then Sting slams him on it. Bubba then blinds him with powder and takes control. The table is brought in the ring, where Sting misses a splash on it. Bubba then whips Sting with his belt and eats a sidewalk slam. Bubba tries a top rope move but is slammed off. Sting splashes him for a near fall I bought as the finish. Sting lays the table on him and stomps him. A Scorpion Death Lock finishes things at 9:36. That was pretty much the blow off to this angle after 3 PPVs worth of matches. Match was fine as far as garbage brawls go.
Hulk Hogan and “Macho Man” Randy Savage vs. Ric “Nature Boy” Flair and Vader
The pre-match video does a good job of putting this over as a dream match of future Hall of Famers. The Giant makes his debut while the MegaPowers walk to the ring, appearing in the entryway for a few seconds as an ominous warning of the future. The Renegade gets his own entrance. Flair runs from him and Arn Anderson looks on in fear. Hogan and Vader trade punches to start. Vader hit Hogan with such a powerpuff shot that Heenan and Bischoff even had to acknowledge it. Vader bounces to the floor off of Hogan’s blows, where Macho Man greets him with a double ax handle.
Vader wallops both faces with a double clothesline, and that draws in Ric Flair. Flair is quickly sent to the floor by Hogan, and then Macho. Flair tries to get some offense in on Hogan but Hogan no sells it and punches away. Hogan locks Flair in a figure-four and wraps up Arn when he tries to make a run in. A cheap shot downs Hogan and Flair pounces with a knee drop on his leg. Vader enters and traps Hogan’s leg in a knee bar. Hogan no sells a suplex but Vader smashes him to the mat anyway. The Giant comes out again and this time we get a good look at him. Vader nails a Vaderbomb but misses a second attempt.
Macho and Flair tag in and Savage explodes on Flair with jabs before Flair sneaks in a dirty shot to slow him down. Flair is slammed off the top and nails the big elbow. Flair is saved by Anderson, and Macho is yanked to the floor where Vader mauls him. A moonsault by Vader connects when Macho’s carcass is dragged back in the ring. Flair keeps the abuse up for several minutes before Hogan comes in. Hogan runs through both heels and Anderson. Vader is slammed. Anderson gets a cheap shot to Hogan’s knee and Vader splashes him. Flair’s pin is kicked out of. Hulk up time. Fans have a luke warm reaction to that. Anderson hits Flair by mistake and a legdrop finishes the Nature Boy at 18:56. Flair’s big comeback is losing to Hogan yet again. The heels deliver a sneak attack after the match and that draws in Angelo Poffo. Flair throws a series of fake looking punches to Poffo’s face and then he locks in a figure-four.
Renegade was totally useless in his roll of outside enforcer to keep the heels in line. Anderson still cheated at will, then Renegade let his friends get jumped in the aftermath and a 70 year old man was beaten up in it’s wake. The match was the basically the usual Hogan tag match, although Hogan actually did a turn as face in peril. The real question is how many times WCW can run the same handful of heels on top of a PPV before the fans stop caring?
Final thoughts: The card wasn’t as abysmal as SuperBrawl but there was still plenty of garbage that made air here. WCW was basically on a bicycle at this point, with much of the card just being a rematch of a rematch.