Segunda Caida

Phil Schneider, Eric Ritz, Matt D and occasional guests write about pro wrestling. Follow us @segundacaida

Sunday, September 08, 2013

My Favorite Wrestling! WCW Saturday Night 6/20/98

1. Yuji Nagata vs. Hardbody Harrison

Hardbody Harrison was like the least surprising sex trafficker in the history of sexual slavery. I'm assuming most people who watched WCW around this time just thought that he was working a "forced sexual slavery" gimmick. It was like Clay Aiken's interview announcing he was gay. I assume most people in attendance were expecting actual news, not something that everybody had known immediately when they first found out who Clay Aiken was. It would be like B.B. King holding a press conference to announce he has hypertension. All that aside, match itself was really fun. Nagata kicked a dirtbag around the ring and Harrison bumped around really nicely. That's pretty much all I wanted.

2. Van Hammer vs. Reese

This wasn't very good at all, but WCW's match structure made bad matches better than similar WWE bad matches. WWE matches are much slower paced and always have to feature a chinlock spot before the babyface starts his comeback. WCW lower card matches were usually just guys go-go-go for 3 minutes. So even if their offense wasn't very good, at least there wasn't much lying around building to a heatless comeback. You had guys rushing through spots and bad matches seemed more action-packed than they probably really were. I get the freakshow aspect of Reese and probably wanted him to be better than he was. It was stunning how bad Van Hammer looked here since he'd probably been wrestling 8+ years at this point.

3. Stevie Ray vs. Mike Tolbert

So this was better than it should have been. Maybe it looks better because it immediately followed a Van Hammer match. But Stevie Ray actually looked pretty decent here, with some nice elbow drops and big right hands. Mike Tolbert was not very good here, but I have a new weird appreciation for him after a recent Segunda Caida review drew some well-worded, humorous and most importantly informative criticism from a gay interest blog. I'm planning an actual response to the Mike Tolbert = mega hunk post, so I'll go into that more when I eventually write that. Tolbert is a green bodybuilder type who isn't very good at getting into position for things, so that results in some chinlocks with Stevie Ray trying to get him on track. The guy is not very good. But this was one of the better Stevie Ray performances (whatever that means).

There's a commercial for an N64 baseball video game and the player in the ad is Ken Caminiti. Phil is gonna have no clue what I'm talking about, but there is literally no more perfect baseball player to have during an ad featured on pro wrestling than Ken Caminiti. The ONE baseball player whose heart exploded due to steroid and drug use, and he's promoting a video game that's sponsoring a pro wrestling program. It is too 100% perfect. Ken Caminiti does pro wrestling better than most pro wrestling (including nailing the death spot).

4. Eddie Guerrero vs. Diamond Dallas Page

Really good fast-paced 6 minutes here. Eddie is maybe the wrestler I miss most (out of those that have died, not just retired). It's a treat watching him here as he hams it up with the crowd the whole time and challenges DDP to keep up, which DDP seems pretty game to do. There's a fun armdrag mirror sequence with Eddie stooging a bunch. Eddie bumps big for DDP and the crowd is way into both. Match ends with an awesome DDP powerbomb into Diamond Cutter and the crowd loses it. Surprised to see Eddie go down fairly easily, but DDP was becoming a pretty massive star at this point.

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Blogger Brian said...

was watching some Worldwide '97 this morning for a project and was pleasantly surprised at what a bump machine Hardbody Harrison was (for Glacier none the less).. - of the lunkheads of that era Chip Minton has been the worst I've seen.. terrible timing.. - my most missed dead wrestler would be Pillman (with Andre runner-up)..

7:24 PM  
Blogger EricR said...

Aww I kinda liked Chip Minton, and think he'd have been much better if he actually concentrated full time on wrestling. He had really great leaping ability for a guy his size (due to his giant legs from being one of the pushers in the 4 man U.S. bobsled team) which he used in some cool ways in matches (always got really big height on moves).

4:39 PM  

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