18 items from 2016
Verbally tearing right through men like Ted Turner, Buff Bagwell and Jeff Jarrett, Vince McMahon appeared to be having an absolute blast on the March 26, 2001 edition of Raw Is War. Complete with a wholly smug grin, the WWF’s head honcho opened up a simulcast between Raw and WCW’s Monday Nitro, declaring that he was appearing on the rival show because he had, in fact, purchased World Championship Wrestling.
Whilst news didn’t travel quite as fast back then in 2001 as it does now, many in the wrestling community were already aware that McMahon had purchased 24 talent contracts, the WCW tape library and numerous WCW trademarks for around $2.5 million by the time Nitro and Raw hit the air. Still, it was quite the shock to see Vince callously declare that the fate of WCW was now in his hands.
Later, WCW would sadly become a mere pawn »
- Jamie Kennedy
Kieran Fisher looks back on the career of Sting following his retirement from in-ring competition…
After an illustrious 30-year career, Sting is expected to retire from professional wrestling, following an injury picked up against Seth Rollins at Night of Champions last year. The Icon’s decision to call it quits comes as no surprise, but it is upsetting for fans who were hoping to see him don the face paint and brandish the bat one last time to end his short-lived WWE career on a high with a victorious Wrestlemania moment. That being said, The Stinger’s impact on the business has been monumental; as one of the biggest stars the industry ever produced, he’ll go down in history as one of the immortals, placed in the upper echelons of wrestling’s most revered legends. However, despite his status in the business, his career was one beleaguered with more mishandling than triumph. »
- Kieran Fisher
“It’s still strange to me that people think DC and Marvel are rivals. Thinking we sit on the Marvel sets talking (trash) about DC.”
Movie studios aren’t humans. They’re corporate entities that produce films. But a lack of humanity doesn’t stop them from possessing human traits. They take on the personalities of those that run them. Marvel has the calm, measured strategy of Kevin Feige. LucasFilm, under Jj Abrams, focuses itself on developing the next wave of science fiction directors. And Zack Snyder’s ‘Let’S Do Everything Because We Can Do Everything’ approach has permeated the DC part of Warner Bros.
The point of this is to show studios, although not human, are subject to human frailties. In any environment where there is competition – and, make no mistake about it, even though Marvel, DC, Sony and »
- Oli Davis
El Rey Network/WWE.com
Back in November, I wrote an article that looked at just how permeable the walls between the world’s biggest wrestling promotions had become. Johnny Gargano, Tommaso Ciampa and New Japan legend Jushin “Thunder” Liger showed up to wrestle in Nxt. Alberto Del Rio, then the reigning Aaa Mega Champion, showed up on WWE television and pinned United States Champion John Cena.
You’d think that was the climax, but no.
On the heels of New Japan’s WrestleKingdom 10, another international shake-up occurred as WWE lured away four of that promotion’s top stars. Aj Styles has already made an impact in WWE, while Shinsuke Nakamura is Nxt-bound and a healthy fraction of the Bullet Club are waiting in the wings.
Simply put, the matches on this list aren’t mere fantasy anymore. The time-honored smark tradition of hypothetically matching up rivals from different promotions »
- Matt O'Connell
With just six days until SuperBrawl, things are heating up on Nitro and throughout the whole show the commentators remind us that Hollywood Hogan and the Macho Man will need to co-exist to take on Sting and Lex Luger. That’s a huge main event, folks!
There’s some fun undercard developments with Chris Jericho, Ddp and Raven while we also see a few recognisable if not baffling faces turn up, too.
With three hours to fill, WCW are already starting to struggle to have exciting segments and matches throughout the whole show but there is a nice trend of every half hour or so giving the audience a big development to sink their teeth into and keep them watching, hopefully until the end.
- Kenny McIntosh
Shane’s reason for coming back is that he feels his father Vince McMahon, his sister Stephanie, and brother-in-law Triple H have done nothing but run the company into the ground, and have put its chances at preserving a future into jeopardy. He even noted the dramatic drop in ratings – something that felt like it came from Eric Bischoff’s mouth in 1999 Nitro-era WCW. His solution to the problem is demanding complete control over Raw, which Vince would then note essentially is WWE’s lifeblood.
Vince also said that for Shane to get what he wants, he will have to wrestle and defeat The Undertaker inside Hell in a Cell at WrestleMania 32, which is set to take place on April 3rd in Dallas, »
- Robert Kojder
So, as you might have noticed, I've missed a couple of weeks. True to form, since I mentioned my on-again/off-again love/hate relationship with pro wrestling in my first column, I couldn't even work up enough inspiration to follow up my initial column on the subject. I was going to write about it every Wednesday night throughout the Road to WrestleMania, and my interest wasn't even sustained long enough to make it to Week 2.
I caught some of last night's WWE Fastlane pay-per-view, and I had some interest in how Raw would follow things up. Still, I was just going to wait until my wife went to sleep (we're currently watching HBO's The Wire. Yes, I know. We're very, very behind), then skim through Raw on my DVR. But then I suddenly got a series of texts from one of my best friends that made me have »
- Mario-Francisco Robles
He was there when ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin infamously filled Vince McMahon’s Corvette with concrete, he watched in awe as Vince ‘screwed’ Bret Hart at the 1997 Survivor Series pay-per-view, and he was sat in an emergency room with a broken and battered Mick Foley following his infamous Hell In A Cell match with The Undertaker.
Vince Russo has had quite the career in pro wrestling as a television writer, producer and even an occasional on-screen performer.
The man has courted controversy throughout his association with the wrestling world, but people never seem to stop talking about him. Recently, he sat down with Sean Oliver of Kayfabe Commentaries to discuss a time which preceded his disastrous WCW run and eventual problems with Tna. 1998 was a time of jubilation for Russo.
At least, it should have been.
As the man himself tells, there was little time for reflection in the »
- Jamie Kennedy
The hype for SuperBrawl VIII continues this week on Nitro as we see the fallout from Hollywood Hogan essentially turning his back on his nWo comrade Randy Savage last week. Meanwhile, The Steiner Brothers continue to try and put their differences aside as they get a shot at The Outsiders’ WCW Tag Team titles.
The more I watch these shows, the more clear is becomes that the three hour format is going to be a problem long-term as it’s tough to keep the fans engaged for that amount of time. To WCW’s credit, they still do a much better job of making three hours pass by than WWE does these days.
Perhaps WWE creative should be watching these old shows back when they get the chance?
- Kenny McIntosh
In the fall of 1998, WCW and WWE were at war. Each week, Nitro and Raw would vie for ratings dominance, and despite the fact that Raw would win more often than not, the overall results were staggering: nearly 10 million people were tuning into wrestling each week, opposite Monday Night Football.
Even in the first half of 1999, when WCW began to fall to a distant second in the war, Nitro was still drawing more viewers than Raw does today.
In the late 90s, wrestling was cool. On Tuesday mornings grade school classrooms, college dormitories, and corporate offices would be filled with talk about what Stone Cold, The Rock, and Goldberg were up to the night before. Even though mainstream media wasn’t extensively covering pro wrestling, it didn’t matter – it seemed like everybody was watching it, anyway. Wrestling was its own media force.
Today, things are quite different. »
- Scott Fried
This is just the second 3 hour edition of the flagship show and it’s interesting to see how the company fill the extra hour. The influx of WWF stars like the British Bulldog and Jim Neidhart has propped up the mid card to flesh it out a little more and the ongoing saga of the new World order and the beginning of them crumbling has some more time to play out on each episode.
Going into this week’s show, the big advertisement was the main event of Sting going one on one with Randy Savage, as well as the fallout from Kevin Nash using the illegal jacknife powerbomb the week before.
Neither Bret Hart or Ric Flair made appearances this week, which seemed slightly strange. Last week, Bret made his intention to challenge the winner of Sting and Hogan for the WCW World Title but all we »
- Kenny McIntosh
There’s no doubts about it, Roman Reigns is the man hand-picked to be World Wrestling Entertainment’s big babyface sensation from here on out. In the picture above, it’s perhaps no accident that Reigns is in the foreground whilst John Cena takes up much of the background. Despite his continued popularity with WWE’s core demographic, Cena is no longer the sole apple of WWE’s eye.
Incredibly, things nearly didn’t work for Roman Reigns. In this week’s article, the reason why is revealed by none other than WWE Hall Of Fame announcer Jim Ross. That’s what this list is all about, exploring the pro wrestling world to deliver 10 different facts that weren’t exactly common knowledge last week.
- Jamie Kennedy
With Souled Out in the history books and Sting & Hogan’s showdown set for SuperBrawl, it’s time to strap in for another ride through an episode of WCW Monday Nitro from early 1998. The good news for those of you who are enjoying this series is that the WWE Network have updated the Nitros through to August 1999, so we can reminisce for the weeks and months to come!
I may need some of you to hold me in order to get through the darker days of WCW that will turn up in the near future, however.
Before we get into the episode, I had to share the above picture with you. Now while you »
- Kenny McIntosh
Eddie Guerrero had been pitching a feud with Rey Mysterio to WWE creative/management practically since the masked marvel arrived in WWE in the summer of 2002, a few short months after Eddie’s own return to the promotion following a very public firing and a battle with substance abuse.
The new and improved Eddie, both inside the ring and out, knew that he and Rey could produce magic if they were only given the chance to do so. The two men were constants in the cruiserweight division in WCW and stole countless PPVs and episodes of Nitro with their unique blend of Mexican, American and Japanese wrestling styles.
Who could forget their five-star Mask versus Title match at Halloween Havoc 1997, or Eddie’s quest to get Rey to join the Luchador World Order (lWo) a year later? Whenever Rey and Eddie were in the same ring at the same time, »
- Lewis Howse
It’s time once again to hop in the DeLorean and head back to January of 1998, for another look at some Wtf moments from the Superdome in New Orleans on Monday Nitro on January 19th, 1998.
One of the biggest takeaways (compared to watching a current episode of Monday Night Raw) is that on this Nitro, there are around fifteen stars who are all pushed, heavily-featured and feel like big names. There’s also a feeling of chaos throughout the show where anything could happen, which enhances the viewing experience tenfold.
This episode is also the go-home Nitro for the upcoming weekend’s Souled Out pay per-view, which oddly enough took place on a Saturday. Going into this edition of WCW’s prime time show, there were more questions about the dissension of the New World Order along with the final build towards The Giant facing Kevin Nash and »
- Kenny McIntosh
WWE Raw recently turned twenty three years old, which is a remarkable feat when you consider just how close it came to extinction in its first five years. Bouncing back from a tumultuous beginning, it has gone on to become one of the longest running episodic shows in television history.
This feature will chart the important episodes which pushed Raw to where it is today. The key ratings and turning points will be analysed, explaining how Vince McMahon established his monday night powerhouse to the point where it is now USA Network’s crown jewel.
Indeed, even with recent ratings drops, Raw is still an industry heavyweight in weekly broadcast television. Around four million viewers each week in primetime? USA can only dream of more shows having that kind of appeal.
Many of the fans bemoaning current Raw ratings weren’t even alive when the show began. That »
- Grahame Herbert
Back in 1997, the new World order were a happy bunch, taking over WCW, winning all the titles and generally making all the babyfaces’ lives a misery.
But after the fallout from Starrcade 1997 and last week’s Nitro Wtf Moments from the January 5th, 1998 episode where Savage inadvertently knocked out Bischoff, causing Savage to slap Hogan for questioning him which led to Nash laying out the Macho Man, this was going to be an interesting episode to view and dissect.
On the January 12th, 1998 edition of Monday Nitro we see the new World order try to become a united front again in the battle for WCW. On the debut edition of Thunder, Jj Dillon stripped Sting of the WCW World Title and the belt is vacant until the big grudge match with Sting and Hollywood Hogan to determine the Undisputed WCW Champion. That match will take place at Superbrawl in about six weeks. »
- Kenny McIntosh
When I got the call to be given the task of compiling Wtf moments for WCW Monday Nitro from 1998, I was ecstatic since I’d watched these shows as a kid, but couldn’t remember the specifics. The Monday Night Wars were in full swing and in January of 1998, WCW had been number one in the ratings for almost 70 consecutive weeks.
The main thing I noticed when watching this show back is the variety of action going on, some good, some bad, but for whatever reason, my attention never wavered in the whole two hours of the show. There was such a wide range of characters and a massive stack of star power, it’s easy to see why Nitro was number one while over on Raw, they were still tweaking their format to become a player in the Monday Night Wars again.
So with that in mind, »
- Kenny McIntosh
18 items from 2016
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