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Mark's Marks: Bash At the Beach '96

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Guest TSMAdmin

Hey fans, your favorite columnist who writes exclusively about wrestling holds here. I bet you all thought I just watch leapfrogs all day trying to figure out who does the best one. But there is more to me than that! Many more horrors await those who continue to click on things that have my name attached to them. I feel sort of dirty at the moment because I’m going to be practicing the darkest of wrestling’s black arts to produce the terror known as … the tape review.


Now, most people just punch out a little recap of the match and call it a day, but not this little black duck. Mark Goodhart provides much more than the norm. I not only provide a match summary but also add a little mini-column to just about every match up that serves to entertain and horrify. Luckily, I separate these all out for you with handy little headings so if you think one of the options is horrible; you can just skip the damn thing and move onto what you do care about. So, with that in mind, let us move right along to what the people came to see, WCW’s Bash at the Beach 1996. The mood was just about to change as two not-quite-as-lazy and not-quite-as-drunk individuals known as Kevin Nash and Scott Hall changed the wrestling landscape with a little something WCW was calling the hostile takeover, but most of us would come to call the New World Order. Your announcers are Tony I can’t spell his last name, Dusty Rhodes, and Bobby “The Brain” Heenan.


Psychosis vs. Rey Mysterio Jr.

THE MATCH: Mike Tenay is your super special announcer that knows the name of the moves. Rey and Psychosis go right to the mat off the bat in order to show us that they can do more than jump really high. Granted all the fans cared about was the jumping, but what do they know? Anyway, Psychosis ties Rey up with a crossbow and Rey pulls out the typical counter. Meanwhile, Mike Tenay fills in the other commentators on the history of masks in Mexico, so you know that the match is moving at a lightning pace. The guys finally find their way off the mat so Rey can do a pointless back flip off the ropes and still get caught with a spinkick that drives him out of the ring. Psychosis builds himself up a head of steam and crushes Rey with a suicide dive to the outside. They get back in the ring and Psychosis drops his guillotine legdrop for a two count. It must not have been his finisher yet, because it didn’t seem like a single fan gave a damn. Psychosis pushes Rey to the apron and kicks him down, but when he charges, Rey uses his legs to push Psychosis into the ring post and to the arena floor. Rey capitalizes with a frankensteiner from the apron to the floor and then hits the springboard variation inside the ring for a two count. But when Rey hits the ropes again, he gets caught with a man-sized hotshot on the top rope. Psychosis follows up with a reverse DDT but Rey rolls out of the ring to avoid a cover. Psychosis quickly follows him out and drops him on the guardrail, face-first before returning to the ring and climbing to the top rope. Psychosis steadies himself and then proceeds to totally splatter Rey with a backsplash to the floor. Back inside the ring, Psychosis capitalizes with an enziguri to get a two count and then takes a hammerlock. A hammerlock? You just splashed his guts out and you grab a hammerlock? Rey, of course, flips Psychosis over and eats a luchablock before cart wheeling, hopping onto Psychosis’ shoulders and tasking him down with another frankensteiner. Psychosis rolls to the apron and gets taken down from there to the floor with yet another rana from Rey. Rey puts Psychosis back inside and hits a springboard moonsault for two before Psychosis kicks away and retreats from the ring. But nowhere is safe as Rey pops him one with a springboard tope con hilo from the asai moonsault position. Mysterio pushes Psychosis back in the ring and tries for another springboard frankensteiner but this time gets caught with a sit out powerbomb from Psychosis to net himself a two count. Psychosis puts Rey on the top rope and follows him up. Psychosis goes for a crucifix powerbomb from the middle rope but Rey counters in midair with a rana for the three count.

RESULT: Rey Mysterio Jr. pins Psychosis: **½

WHY **½: While a bit revolutionary in its day, this match hasn’t really aged well as time has passed as the spots just aren’t as awe inspiring as they once were. Rey really overused the frankensteiner during this period of his career and after seeing four of them in this match I was eager for something else. Neither man really capitalized on the super backsplash spot like they should have since both ignored the move mere minutes later. Other than those complaints, the execution was flawless and the moves were crisp and exciting even if they weren’t sold for an extended period of time.

ONE THING I HATE ABOUT (L)U(CHA): I know that the different styles of wrestling have different conventions. Puro will typically have some cross armbreakers in their matches, American wrestling will have clotheslines out the wazoo, but lucha libre contains a convention that make me mental, its what I like to call a luchablock. Now normally when you see someone throw a shoulderblock, one guy will knock the over guy down. But in lucha, a shoulderblock seems to only serve to knock a guy back a few steps while the other guy hits the ropes. And its not like the block is thrown in such a way to actually look like it stuns someone, instead the luchadores just bounce off each other with a weak hip check. I guess it is hard to work out a way for someone to stand still long enough for the other wrestler to do a cartwheel and a flip and a tap dance before hitting a armdrag but the luchablock just has to be about the worst option ever.


Big Bubba w/ Jimmy Hart vs. John Tenta: Sock Full of Silver Dollars on a Pole Match

THE MATCH: The story is Tenta quit the Dungeon of Doom and got half of his head shaved in the process, and now its time for revenge. The announcers quickly note that the pole is too damn high for the two lard butts to climb up there. And when the announcers know something is wrong with a match, everyone and their mom knows it. Anyway, Bubba goes for the sock first and gets knocked off, then John does the same thing. Then wash rinse repeat. Tenta figures out that he’s never going to get up the pole so he tries to take the pole apart at the base but Bubba grabs him behind and chokes him out with a leather belt. Bubba then pulls a roll of athletic tape and ties John to the ropes before laying a whipping in with the belt. Now, you’ve got your opponent all tied up in a pole match, what do you do? Climb the pole? Heck no! You cut some hair. Then you get low blowed and the fat bastard takes your scissors and cuts himself free. No wonder you lose all the time Bubba. So Tenta then tries to cut the pole free, but he gets attacked by Bubba again and caught with a spinebuster. Bubba gets the bright idea to send Jimmy Hart up and get the sock, but while Jimmy is climbing, John catches Bubba with a powerslam. So when Jimmy comes down with the sock, Tenta is there to grab it and then sock Bubba with a sock for the pin. Mr. Socko could not be reached for comment.

THE RESULT: John Tenta pins Big Bubba: DUD

,b>WHY DUD: Because John Tenta has one skill and one skill only, and that’s to flop on his opponent and he didn’t even do that here. It is like having Bobby Eaton in a match and telling him he can’t come off the top rope. The match was also hampered by the stipulations. It was the basic, climb the pole, get knocked off the pole, climb the pole again type of match. And when the thing on the top of the pole is a freaking sock, the match is going to reach an anti-climatic end no matter what.

WHEN THINGS GO WELL: You knew this match was going to stink just looking at it. But I will be darned if that everything didn’t work out exactly the way it was planned, and that is somewhat refreshing. I mean how many times have you seen a good ladder match penalized because someone fell off the ladder when they were not supposed to do so? Well not so for this match, everything went the way it should have, not that it was a classic or anything. But the match could have been made even worse had something gone wrong, like Jimmy taking too long to climb the pole, or Bubba’s tape job not holding up. This was truly a case where the gimmick did what it was supposed to but the basic wrestling wasn’t up to the task.


“Diamond” Dallas Page © vs. “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan: Taped Fist Match, Lord of the Ring

THE MATCH: Page is defending the ring he won at Slamboree: Battlebowl a few months previous. Jim pushes Dallas around a bit before Page drops Duggan’s throat across the top rope and then pulls him to the ringpost. With Duggan’s legs straddling the post, Page pulls a roll of tape out of his tights and ties Duggan’s feet together. While referee Nick Patrick works on freeing Duggan on the outside, Page jumps into the ring, pulls a pair of scissors out and cuts the tape off of Duggan’s fists. I don’t know about you all, but I am not going to be putting scissors in my skintight pants anytime soon. Unfortunately for Page, he didn’t cut off Duggan’s hands because he just keeps throwing soup bones, tape or no tape. Duggan tosses Page to the outside and bounces him around the outside for a bit before tossing Page back into the ring. But when Duggan is entering the ring, Page kicks the ropes up into Hacksaw’s groin and quickly hits a diamond cutter for the three. Too bad Duggan is a sore loser, he tapes up one of his fists and KO’s Page with a big right hand.

THE RESULT: Diamond Dallas Page pins Hacksaw Jim Duggan: DUD

WHY DUD: Besides it being Duggan against Page when he was just coming out of his horrible starting patch? Well, it was a taped fist match that didn’t have a whole lot of taped fist punching. Doesn’t that defeat the point?

DUGGAN IS THE ANTI-MALENKO: If Dean Malenko is a great wrestler with little personality and Duggan is a horrible wrestler with tremendous charisma, does that mean if you merged them together you would have a world champion? No one said these little mini-columns were always going to be good.


Public Enemy (Rocco Rock and Johnny Grunge) vs. The Nasty Boys (Jerry Sags and Brain Knobs): Dog Collar Match

THE MATCH: Rock is attached to Sags and Grunge is tied to Knobs for those of you who would like to know. Anyway, the teams start of brawling like they should and immediately go the outside where they bash each other with a trashcan and Knobs pops Grunge with an inflatable rubber shark… and the award for dumbest foreign object goes to… Rocco and Sags work their way over the life guard set and Sags bashes Rocco over the head with a surfboard while Grunge bulldogs Knobs on the boardwalk. Sags comes over to make a save, but Rocco catches him from behind with a life preserver. Rocco climbs the lifeguard stand and cannon balls off it onto Sags. Of course, he goes for it again, and of course, Sags pulls him off with the dog collar. Insert a lot of pointless brawling here until they get back in the ring and Rocco has Sags on a table, Sags gets off the furniture and pulls Rocco off the top rope onto the table. In the best part of the match, the table no sells and Rocco bounces off. So Sags puts Rocco back on the table and goes to the middle rope and comes off with a chain wrapped elbow… and the table no sells again! Meanwhile, Knobs hangs Grunge over the top rope with the collar. Sags then clotheslines Rock into the length of chain that Knobs had pulled taunt and gets the three count. There’s more brawling after the match, but it wasn’t impressive enough to mention.

RESULT: Jerry Sags pins Rocco Rock ½*

WHY ½*: The brawling was totally pointless and had absolutely no energy behind it. How you can hit someone with a rubber shark with no feeling is beyond me. Brawling demands a high amount of emotion attached to it in order to get the match over (see The Nasty Boys vs. Cactus Jack/Kevin Sullivan from Slamboree ’94). Anyway, the match was deadly dull and the only redeeming factors came from an inanimate object, and I don’t mean Johnny Grunge.

DO IT RIGHT OR DON’T DO IT: I never really understood why federations would hire talent from ECW and not allow them to wrestle ECW style bloodbaths. Rocco and Grunge are basically talent less hacks who get by on bleeding and jumping off things. It would be foolish to think otherwise, so why would you sign them and take away the tiny edge they had and place them in lukewarm brawls like this one? Promotions looking to hire talent from other federations need to look and see what they are getting and let the people they sign work to the talents that they actually have. Yet, WCW and WWE make these kinds of mistakes all the time It’s a recipe destined to fail, and fail it does. Try to look surprised.


Dean Malenko © vs. Disco Inferno: Cruiserweight Title Match

THE MATCH: Dean must not be a big fan of dancing. Because he just kicks the living sponge out of Disco right from the get go and drives Disco out of the ring. Dean takes Disco to the ring post and pushes him back into the ring to continue the torment. Dean smashes Disco with a corner clothesline and tosses him into the ropes for a leaping calf kick. Malenko hauls Disco up and totally drives him into the mat with one of those brainbusters that actually lands on the head instead of the shoulders. Dean floats over for the cover but doesn’t hook a leg, allowing Inferno to slip out the back door. Malenko follows up with a belly-to-back suplex to set up a leg lace. Dean really starts working over the knee, hooking on a STF to continue the work. Dean releases the hold, which finally allows Disco to start firing back and catch Dean with a hotshot clothesline. Disco hits a stroke, but hesitates a bit before going for a cover, which allows Dean to kick away. Malenko basically counters by grabbing Dean and throwing him out of the ring. Back inside, Dean grabs a double arm bar in order to immobilize Disco long enough to drop a springboard legdrop. Disco tries to fight back with a series of elbows but when he goes for an avalanche, Dean hops over the top rope to the apron to dodge it. Dean comes off the top with an axehandle but Disco blocks it and quickly hits a reverse neckbreaker for a 2 count. Disco hits a backdrop for another two, and follows that with a spinning neckbreaker and another two count. Disco misses a charge and gets hit in the back of the head with a middle rope dropkick. Dean tries for the cloverleaf but Disco counters with a small package and nets himself a two. Disco hits a clothesline and grabs yet another two count before Dean kicks out. Disco goes for a hiptoss, but Dean holds his ground and totally buries Disco with a lariat from downtown. A tigerbomb leaves Disco in a perfect position to lock on the Texas cloverleaf for the tap out.

THE RESULT: Dean Malenko defeats Disco Inferno by submission ***

WHY ***: Because Dean and Disco went out to tell us a story and succeeded extremely well. Basically, the story was Dean was far and away the better worker but Disco had a ton of guts and could pose a challenge if he would just stop dancing and take his craft more seriously. Execution from both guys was peachy keen if not spectacular, but I would have appreciated some more legwork from Dean.

TELL THAT STORY: You know the story of the match that I just told you about? You know who really got it over? Tony and Bobby, two announcers that are not historically well known for that ability. See folks, this is what announcers should always be doing, getting the people and the story of the match over to the crowd. Heenan was particularly impressive while effectively routing for Disco to stop dancing and keeping on Malenko effectively. Seriously, if you ever need a textbook match to see what announcers can do for a match without having to go ridiculously overboard like Jim Ross, see this match.


Steve “Mongo” McMichaels w/ Deborah vs. “Desperado” Joe Gomez

THE MATCH: Joe Gomez was basically a longhaired generic face with a lousy physique that was even a worse worker than Mongo was. Let that thought keep you up at night. McMichaels just pushes Gomez back in the corner and drives in a bunch of chops before dropping into a three-point stance and hitting a clothesline. Joe comes back with a bodypress but immediately takes a low blow and gets stomped down. Mongo hits a side backbreaker for a two count and locks on a sleeper hold. Joe hits the usual jawbreaker counter, but immediately gets caught with a reverse neckbreaker for a two count. Mongo tries to hook on a figure-four leglock but gets caught in a small package for two. McMichaels keeps on the offense and bodyslams Joe but misses an elbow drop off the ropes. Joe comes off the ropes with three of the worst chops in wrestling history and then drops Mongo with a dropkick. Joe hits the ropes again but gets caught and driven to the canvas with the ‘spike’ tombstone piledriver for three.

THE RESULT: Steve McMichaels pins Joe Gomez DUD

WHY DUD: Both guys were as green as they could possibly be with only the piledriver really being executed well. McMichaels would have been better served to take on a ring veteran at this point, like a Bobby Eaton, instead of someone with about the same amount of experience as himself. That way, it could have been more a learning experience.

WAS MONGO THE WORST HORSEMAN EVER?: Now, there are some people who would try and tell you that Paul Roma was a really bad choice to be tapped as a Horseman. But at least Roma had actually wrestled before he got selected to join the squad and was reasonably proficient at his craft. McMichaels on the other hand, was a complete and total joke of a former-footballer rookie that should have never been allowed anywhere near the Horsemen, much less added to the stable. How you can put someone with less then ten wrestling matches into an important faction like the Horsemen is beyond me.


Konan © vs. “Nature Boy” Ric Flair w/ Woman and Miss Elizabeth: US Title Match

THE MATCH: Konan is still in his lucha mode here before he went all gangsta light. Flair and Konan share a handshake and surprisingly enough, Ric does not cheap shot Konan. Konan quickly catches Ric coming off the ropes with a dropkick to the tummy, which is always a wonderful place to dropkick if you don’t have a good vertical jump. Ric manages to push Konan into a corner for a chop and a punch to the eyeball but Konan quickly strikes back with a backdrop and locks on a bow and arrow, but isn’t able to pull Flair all the way up and ends up turning the move into more of a surfboard type of hold. Flair wrangles himself free but quickly gets gorilla pressed. Flair gives Konan a chop but a Konan punch sends him down to the canvas. Another gorilla press sends Ric to the canvas and a pair of clotheslines sends Flair over the top rope to the floor. Konan goes to the apron, but Elizabeth and Woman build a human wall between the two competitors. So Konan decides to play wrecking ball and crashes right into Liz and Flair. Konan goes to the top rope to press his advantage but Woman shakes the bottom rope and Konan falls to the mat in a heap. Flair gets back inside the ring and drops the knee to get himself a two count. Flair grabs a hold of referee Nick Patrick and while he’s looking the other way, Woman gets into the ring and kicks Konan right in the jimmies. I’m starting to think Woman should have gotten the title shot, she’s been way more effective then Flair this time out. Liz pops up on the apron to hold grab Nick’s attention some more so Flair can toss Konan over the top rope to the floor some Woman can get in some good choking and back scratching action. Back in the ring, Flair drops Konan with a delayed vertical suplex and gets himself a two count in the bargain. Flair pushes Konan into a corner and starts laying in some chops but Konan immediately fires back with a flurry of chops and right hands to back Ric off. Konan climbs to the middle rope and rains down ye’ ole ten punch count-a-long. Flair pulls out his face first fall on the mat. Konan Irish whips Flair into a corner and Flair flips over the buckle and lands on the apron. A dropkick from the middle rope sends Flair down the rest of the way. Flair begs off for a bit, but when Konan goes for the sunset flip, Flair buries a fist into Konan’s forehead. Flair goes for the figure-four but gets caught in a small package for a two count. Konan takes Flair down with a drop toehold and locks on a figure-four of his own which forces Flair to grab the ropes in order to force a break. Konan charges in and takes an elbow and Flair goes the top rope. I think we all know what is coming next, Whooo? No…. Wheee! A facebuster gets two for Konan, as does the tumbleline. Konan puts on an abdominal stretch and presses Flair’s shoulders to the mat, but Liz distracts the referee as Woman climbs up on the opposite apron with her shoe in hand. Konan turns towards her, but get caught from behind with a backbreaker from Flair, which bounces him toward Woman. Woman hits him with a shoe to the cranium, Flair covers and we have a new U.S. Champion.

THE RESULT: Ric Flair pins Konan for the U.S. Title *½

WHY *½: Because it was the paint by numbers Flair match, coupled with Konan. Flair must have wrestled that match about a billion times by that point, and quite frankly as good as that match is, it gets tiresome after a bit. Konan was all right in his role as far as the actual wrestling was concerned but he didn’t add a single once of personality to the proceedings and appeared to be exceptionally winded and seemed to have issues running the ropes.

DID YOU KNOW?: In perhaps the greatest leap in the quality of opponents ever, Konan went from defending the U.S. Title against Pat Tanaka (El Gato) at the Great American Bash to Ric Flair. I think the degree of difficulty went up quite a bit there.


“The Enforcer” Arn Anderson & Chris Benoit vs. “Taskmaster” Kevin Sullivan & WCW World Champion The Giant w/ Jimmy Hart

THE MATCH: The Horsemen get a title shot if the team of Anderson and Benoit win here. Anyway we go right to fight, fight, and fight! And here’s Steve McMichaels to hit The Giant from behind with a metal briefcase. The Giant chases Mongo to the back while the remaining Horsemen stomp the stuffing out of Sullivan. As the beating continues, Jimmy Hart runs to the back to retrieve The Giant but since this is a regular tag match, he just returns to his corner to await Sullivan’s tag. Sullivan continues to try and brawl his way free but the Horsemen continue to cut him off. Anderson drives his knee right into Sullivan’s groin and sets him up for the DDT, but he is too close to the ropes and Giant pops him with a clothesline. But Sullivan is still left in the ring as Benoit comes in to dish out some more punishment. Benoit places Sullivan on the top rope and seems to be going for a superplex, but The Giant comes into the ring preemptively. Seeing The Giant behind him, Benoit dives off onto him but gets caught and then tossed onto Anderson. The referee forces The Giant out of the ring, and Sullivan is STILL caught in the ring. Anderson and Benoit try to hit Sullivan with a spike piledriver but Sullivan manages to sweep Anderson's legs and slingshot him into Benoit. And finally, The G-Man gets himself a tag and "my name is The Giant…. you killed my father, prepare to die." But old Double A wants no part of the champion and high tails it out of the ring while Benoit and Sullivan proceed to brawl their way to the announce position. Back in the ring, The Giant has finally caught up with Anderson and drops him with a little move he likes to call the choke-slam for the three. I guess The Horsemen knew what they were doing by keeping The Giant out of the ring. The Giant and Jimmy Hart leave while Benoit and Sullivan fight on by the announcers. Benoit gets himself an advantage and drags Sullivan back into the ring for a belly-to-back superplex before Woman (one of the managers of the Horsemen at the time) races in from the back to pull him off Sullivan. The Giant returns and clears the ring before picking Sullivan up like a sack of potatoes and carries his ass out.

THE RESULT: The Giant pins Arn Anderson *½

WHY *½: Because even if you tell a story in a match, its not always going to make up for the fact that Kevin Sullivan is in the ring for most of the time. The guy is literally only good at wrestling wild crazy brawls and that is just about it, end of list. For being mauled for ninety percent of the match, Sullivan still couldn't build himself any sort of sympathy from the fans and that’s a shame. The Giant was still very green at this point and finishing Arn off so fast reflects that fact.

ARN KNOWS TAG: One of the most upsetting things about the horror that is the tag team division in WWE right now is that they have perhaps the greatest master of tag team tactics in wrestling history standing right there. Look at this or just about any Anderson tag match, and you will see Anderson pulling just about every sneaky tag team move possible in order to draw heat. One of the best little moves anyone can pull out is to cut the ring off in order to prevent a tag. Nowadays, once someone gets in trouble, they make the tag the next time they gain even the slightest advantage. Anderson, on the other hand, would commonly have his opponent make a move and attempt to tag but cut them off before they could. It served to create a better pay off when the tag would actually be made. It was the little things that made Anderson so worth watching.


Scott Hall, Kevin Nash, and A Wrestler to Be Named Later vs. "Total Package" Lex Luger, Sting, and "Macho Man" Randy Savage

THE MATCH: This is our main event, and let the love flow. It starts with just Scott Hall and Kevin Nash being there for team "Outsiders" (since the name "new World order" would be coined in just a few minutes) taking on three men. Scott starts off against Luger and begins with the devastation known as the toothpick flick. Luger slaps the taste out of his mouth, so Scott responds with a flurry of right hands. Too bad for Hall, but he misses a clothesline and Luger comes flying in with a forearm and everything goes bananas! Everybody goes flying around like crazy while Nash chokes Luger across the top rope. Sting breaks it up with a stinger splash but manages to squash Luger in the process as well and he goes falling to the arena floor and he just isn't moving. So everyone takes a little timeout while the emergency crew tends to Luger and takes him on a stretcher ride to the back. As things settle down, we have Sting facing off against Hall. Sting immediately takes Hall down and starts throwing bunches of punches. Sting hits a reverse atomic drop and a facebuster and makes a tag to Savage. Savage goes right to the top rope and comes off with an axe handle but gets caught coming down with a punch to the stomach. Nash comes in and drives Macho into the top turnbuckle with a snake-eyes drop while Hall has Sting and the referee otherwise detained. Hall tries to take advantage with a clothesline but Savage ducks underneath and hits a falling clothesline. Hall tags out and Nash pushes Macho into a corner, but Savage is able to force his way free with some sticking and moving. Unfortunately, gets in a little too close and takes an elbow and a body slam. Nash goes to drop an elbow, but Savage kind of, sort of, rolls out of the way, basically having Nash land square on his head. Savage gets a tag but Sting immediately gets caught coming in with knee lifts. Nash Irish whips Sting into a corner, but Sting lifts himself over Nash and hits him with a dropkick. Sting tries to follow up with a sunset flip but Nash grabs him by the throat, lifts him up from between his legs and slams him to mat. Tag to Hall, and, get this, he hits the fallaway slam without having to catch a cross body!!! It is amazing but true. Anyway, Nash hits the boot and The Outsiders pull out the abdominal stretch handhold and continue to basically make Sting their personal assistant. Hall hits a spinning punch for two and Nash follows with a side suplex for another dos. Nash pushes Sting around a little bit and Sting starts firing back with some punches and some ducking and some chopping. Sting literally dives on Kevin and drives him back into his corner to make the tag! In comes Savage with top rope axe handles a plenty for Hall, but when he turns his attention back to Nash, he takes one of the nastier low blows in history. Savage is out, Nash is wobbly, Hall went for a drink, and I'm not sure where Sting is, but here comes Hulk Hogan to save the mother f'n day (according to Tony and Dusty). But instead …

Oh, somewhere in this favored land the sun is shining bright;

The band is playing somewhere, and somewhere hearts are light,

And somewhere men are laughing, and somewhere children shout;

But there is no joy in Mudville… err WCW-- mighty Hogan has come out…. To drop the leg on Macho! And a chill filled the room.

THE RESULT: No Contest *½

WHY *½: Well the match really wasn't all that great to be honest, the faces never really got to actually control the match for any length of time and Nash and Hall just went about their business. Thankfully, Hall and Nash were still decent at this point and weren't anywhere near as horrid as they would end up being. Anyway, this is more a historical moment, like Hogan slamming Andre that wrestling fans just have to see.

IT'S NOT A LUGER!: So I suppose most people would be expecting the usual historical presentation on the nWo and all that. Well, not from me daddy! See, I look at this match and I always wonder about why they had Luger carted out like they did so early in the match up. Some might say that they just removed Lex so that WCW wouldn't have to get beat on two-on-three. Some might say that it was so there would be some doubt regarding Hogan's alliance when he first came out (and they'd be right). But I believe something else was in play as well. I believe it was actually a swerve to make the more savvy fans think that Luger was, in fact, the third member of the Outsiders. WCW could have easily played it as though Luger was coming back out to help his buddies, but instead, turns on them. And I think most people that have followed wrestling for some time would have bought that easily. So when Luger goes down, the alarm bells go off in our little Smart Mark brains that something isn't right with that situation. I personally think it was a pretty effective head fake myself and more creative thought that you would usually get from watching wrestling.


SO IN CONCLUSION: If you haven't ever seen the formation of the nWo, it is pretty fun to see how the fans of the day were reacting to the events as they happened. But that’s only going to work for you so long, and there is too much bad wrestling to get through in order to see the historical moment. So if you watch wrestling to time the matches and count the armbars, this is not the tape for you. If you need to have a collection of epic moments in wrestling, Bash at the Beach '96 is a good one to add to the list.


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