The Best And Worst Of WCW/nWo Souled Out 1998
Previously on the vintage Best and Worst of WCW: We’re headed right into a pay-per-view with out Hollywood Hogan, Sting or Diamond Dallas Web page wrestling on it filled with mid-card angles and clear finishes that can positively pull a horrible buyrate and justify one other 12 months of nWo bullshit. Until it doesn’t, through which case … whoops, political apocalypse! Guess which one occurs!
If you happen to’d like to observe this present on WWE Community, and you actually ought to, click here. Within the coming weeks you’ll have the ability to learn all of the Thunder recaps on its UPROXX tag page, and naturally in the event you’re studying these, you’re hopefully studying the corresponding Nitro bits as nicely.
And now, the second version (of the third episode) of the Best and Worst of WCW/nWo Souled Out for January 24, 1998.
- Best: La Parka’s Restrict Break
- Best: Raven Guidelines
- Best: Chris Jericho Is Your New Cruiserweight Champion
- Best: Rick Martel, Tremendous Face
- Best: Bret Hart Settles The ‘Who’s Higher, Charlotte Or Natalya’ Rivalry Like 15 Years Early
- Best/Worst: Scott Steiner Needs To Know Extra About Friendship And Muscular tissues
- Worst: I’M HERE
- Worst: Laborious Occasions For Larry Zbyszko
- Worst: Payment-Fi-Foh No
- Worst: The “Primary” “Occasion”
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Best: La Parka’s Restrict Break
Final 12 months’s Souled Out, with its rubbish vans, home band and ugly woman magnificence pageant, is without doubt one of the most embarrassing pay-per-views ever. Whoever put collectively this 12 months’s Souled Out should’ve been like, “welp, we used all our good concepts on the primary one, simply do a wrestling present,” as a result of Souled Out 1998 is, and I’m not shitting you, among the best wrestling pay-per-views of the 12 months. Who knew?
The opens with rudo dream group Psicosis, El Dandy, Silver King and the abusive skeletal homie La Parka taking up Juventud Guerrera, hip hop check dummy Tremendous Calo, and Juniors Chavo Guerrero and Lizmark. Initially, the man on the left there within the screenshot with the “Lucha Libre Wrestling, Translation Lavatory Break” signal can go screw. Second of all, in the event you’re ever wished one single WCW cruiserweight match to hook somebody and also you don’t suppose they’d wanna take note of a 20-minute title match, present them this. It’s not the finest cruiserweight match ever, but it surely’s definitely one of the vital balls-out enjoyable, and set a really clear template for the billion junior heavyweight scrambles that adopted. Here’s a DailyMotion version in the event you don’t have the Community.
It’s bought every thing you’d need from a match like this. Guys wandering out and in of the ring impartial of tags even by lucha libre guidelines. Dusty Rhodes on commentary. Tremendous Calo being loopy/getting crushed on. Psicosis bumping on his neck for primary shit. That Mike Tenay line about the way you shouldn’t underestimate Silver King due to his “stocky physique.” And, most significantly, La Parka being the best. The biggest. Okay, so Chavito pins Psicosis with a twister DDT to win the match. La Parka exhibits up and lays out the complete técnico group with chair-shots to the face. He then assaults his personal group with the chair till everyone seems to be knocked out, after which he units up the chair in the midst of the ring to bop on it and do Hulk Hogan fingers.
When he’s finished, he tucks the folding chair below his arm and struts away together with his nostril within the air like he’s a cartoon businessman. I don’t perceive something La Parka’s ever finished and even who he’s, actually, however I’ve all the time liked it, and that is peakest peak WCW La Parka.
Best: Raven Guidelines
The remainder of the cardboard is bolstered by three (three) good-to-great mid-card matches and a semi-main that WCW had truly been constructing as much as for the previous few months on TV. Loopy, proper? Word: in the event you’re studying this and have been like, “isn’t that what you’re all the time imagined to do,” please bear in mind this present’s main-evented by Lex Luger vs. Randy Savage, a match with zero construct aside from that they’ve wrestled a billion instances earlier than and that they’re on totally different groups.
The better of the three is Chris Benoit vs. Raven, which you realize in the event you learn the Best and Worst of Nitro and Thunder has been constructing for seemingly perpetually. Benoit wished a shot at Raven, so Raven constructed an Eden’s Gate of jobbers and ex-ECW guys, put them in 90s tremendous hero film unhealthy man garments and made them wrestle for him. Benoit’s by no means gotten his fingers on Raven, compelled to struggle his “substitutes,” generally as much as like six at a time. For this one, the Flock is banned from ringside. Additionally it’s “Raven’s Guidelines” which suggests something goes, so … in principle the Flock may simply run out right here and assault once more and be wonderful, however no one ever pays consideration to that. Right here’s a DailyMotion version of it with German commentary, if you wish to watch it and faux Alex Wright’s speaking to himself over it.
The sensible a part of this match is the end, which sees Benoit lastly lock dude up within the Crippler Crossface. As a substitute of tapping out and even simply passing out, Raven begins laughing within the maintain. THEN he passes out, and Benoit wins the match. So now the complete feud up up to now is re-contextualized as Raven taking a man who solely will get actually rowdy when he’s been tossed up and down a flight of stairs a number of instances and having his posse of nerds beat him up for 2 months till he’s able to maim. That manner he’s bought an actual problem, and will get the ache he feels he deserves. *mwah*
Best: Chris Jericho Is Your New Cruiserweight Champion
Additionally superb is Chris Jericho vs. Rey Mysterio Jr., due to course it’s, but in addition as a result of it’s the official official starting of Chris Jericho’s epic “conspiracy sufferer” title run that made him all people’s favourite. Up till now, all he’s actually finished is heel it up a bit, apologize, after which take it again. Right here, he’s Chris motherfucking Jericho.
The common story of the match is that Mysterio’s clearly the higher wrestler and Jericho’s too targeted on the gang booing him. It’s going nicely for Rey till he goes for a springboard and Jericho shoves his legs off the ropes, inflicting him to topple down together with his leg caught and completely damage his left knee. You could do not forget that physique half from the “our bodies have been bruised” video that ran earlier than WWE exhibits for like half a decade. Jericho capitalizes, and is ready to reverse a prime rope rana into the Lion Tamer as a result of Rey’s legs aren’t sturdy sufficient to take him over anymore. Jericho’s your new Cruiserweight Champion.
When the match is over, Jericho grabs the mic and does the Mikey from the Life cereal commercial bit earlier than realizing that, wait, he’s nonetheless being booed. “Don’t you boo me! You don’t wanna be booing me!” He decides to offer the gang one thing to boo about, so he rips off Mysterio’s leg brace, stomps it a bunch after which crushes it towards the ring steps with a big-ass steel toolbox. As he’s strolling away, he’s muttering “soary, soary” below his breath. Christopher by God Jericho.
Best: Rick Martel, Tremendous Face
ALSO superb is the Tv Championship match between Booker T and Rick Martel, who returned from relative obscurity trying like Alex Wright’s jacked dad and dealing the whitest-meat babyface type you’ve ever seen. Like, he’s so babyface you’ve gotta surprise if the character had gone on a Imaginative and prescient Quest or one thing and realized he wasted all these years modeling and spraying pesticide cologne in folks’s eyes. The Flock had been messing with Booker, so Martel stood up for him and saved him so he may politely ask him for a title shot. He bought it, and right here we’re.
This match is all about mutual respect, with Martel seemingly falling again into his outdated methods — solely a bit — when issues get powerful. He pretends to get clocked within the balls on a leap frog to play genital opossum and achieve a bonus, for instance. It by no means goes too far, although, and Booker’s capable of put him away with a Harlem Hangover that’s 100% aspect of the boot to face to retain the championship. After the match Martel completes the story he was telling, yanking the belt away from the referee and kinda sorta teasing a heel flip earlier than being a great sport and presenting it to E-book himself. Saturn exhibits up earlier than we discover out if Martel’s fully on the extent or not, and Booker makes the save for Martel to arrange a triple risk of types at SuperBrawl.
Supplemental Worst: That match finally ends up being the one the place Martel suffers a career-ending harm, and has to retire after only some months in WCW making this superb comeback. He exhibits up once more a number of months later and tries to go, however will get instantly injured once more, and that’s all she wrote. Tremendous unhappy, particularly since I didn’t admire his smiley Quebecois dadittude once I was youthful.
Best: Bret Hart Settles The ‘Who’s Higher, Charlotte Or Natalya’ Rivalry Like 15 Years Early
If you happen to’re questioning how egregiously politics fucked this present, Bret Hart and Ric Aptitude have their first one-on-one match in firm historical past and it’s caught within the semi-main between the “battle of the giants” and that Luger/Savage Nitro match.
For weeks now, Ric Aptitude’s been taking offense to Bret Hart’s already years-old “finest there may be, finest there was, and the very best there ever shall be” catchphrase. HE is the very best there no matter, you see! After passive-aggressively fussing at one another about it for a number of in-ring interview segments, they determined to settle it within the ring. Right here’s an enormous shock: a Bret Hart vs. Ric Aptitude match is fairly good!
Aptitude’s already a bit previous his prime and Hart’s nonetheless looking for his footing in a brand new firm after the biggest in-ring controversy in wrestling history, so it’s not so good as their early ’90s WWF matches — particularly not the Ironman on the Boston Backyard which is like 15 instances higher than Hart/Michaels at WrestleMania — but it surely’s good. It’s bought a clear end, too, with Aptitude placing Bret over laborious with all 5 Strikes of Doom and a submission victory with the Sharpshooter. If this had simply been the primary occasion and had gotten these seven further minutes they gave to Luger, it may’ve been even higher. Ah, nicely.
Best/Worst: Scott Steiner Needs To Know Extra About Friendship And Muscular tissues
The Steiner Brothers as soon as once more group up with the Massive Misplaced Man to tackle the nWo B-team of Vicious, Scrumptious and no matter adjective finest describes Konnan. They’ve finished this match like six or seven instances since final month, it seems like, and many of the current matches have revolved round Scotty Steiner’s rising confidence in himself and, maybe most significantly, his large honkin’ muscle groups. Scott’s began doing all of the work and wrestling total matches with out tagging out as a result of he realized he’s huge AND an newbie wrestling wizard AND nonetheless kinda cell sufficient to throw Frankensteiners, so his group “punishes” him at Souled Out by having him begin the match on the apron and by no means tagging him in. Good name, guys. I do know the Cleveland Cavaliers like to punish LeBron James by making him sit out total video games and watch Ante Zizic and London Perrantes do all of the work.
Anyway, Scott has to face on the apron and watch his group lose for like 11 complete minutes earlier than lastly getting within the ring uninvited, dumping Konnan on his head after which strolling again to the nook to make the tag. When Bubber lastly tags him in, Scott single-handedly suplex-murks the evil group (minus Buff, which is vital) and wins with an hilariously protected Steiner Screwdriver on Ok-Dogg. All head to thighs. I hope Konnan purchased him dinner for that.
When the match is over you’d suppose Scotty could be mad at his group, however he’s as soon as once more too busy standing on the ropes displaying off his muscle groups. Buff hops up on the apron and pulls him down for a bizarre too-close dialog we are able to’t hear, and he does the “I’m watching you” fingers. The announce group doesn’t know what this implies, however I feel everyone knows: Buff understands how a lot Scott loves posing, and suppose she ought to be part of the group the place that form of shit is inspired. The ethical of the story: in case your brother all of a sudden turns into a narcissist with Bane’s venom physique however he’s profitable all of your matches for you, perhaps relax and let him do what he desires so he doesn’t uncover and be part of the anarchist boy’s membership down the corridor.
I suppose now’s the time to speak in regards to the unhealthy stuff from this pay-per-view. Fast, title the worst factor that would all of a sudden occur. Did you say “nonsensical turns,” “career-threatening accidents” or “Roddy Piper returning?” Congratulations, it’s all three!
Worst: I’M HERE
WCW’s Tobias Fünke, Rowdy Roddy Piper, is again. He’s nonetheless some kind of undefined authority determine, regardless that the final time we noticed him he was temping for James J. Dillon and now Dillon’s again and wonderful, and he’s right here fresh from the set of Walker Texas Ranger to make selections in regards to the WCW World Heavyweight Championship.
In case you missed it, Hollywood Hogan pinned Sting clean at Starrcade however Bret Hart has referee PTSD and restarted the match, so Sting gained the championship. They’d a rematch the following night time on Thunder that saw Hogan pin Sting AGAIN in a re-do of the identical rattling end, causing Dillon to vacate the championship on the first Thunder. To complicate issues, Scott Hall won World War 3 and can also be owed a title shot.
Piper’s masterful answer is to inform Scott Corridor to attend, as a result of Hogan and Sting are having one other match for the championship at SuperBrawl, and this one will certainly 100% have a clear end, he bets. You’d suppose Piper’s play right here could be, “Hulk Hogan is a awful cheater who has screwed everybody out of matches for years so nuts to him, Sting’s the champion, and we’re gonna uphold that ‘punish individuals who break the principles’ stuff we launched a number of weeks in the past after which fully forgot about,” however WCW is the Democrats and the nWo are Republicans and when the nWo goes low, WCW goes excessive. And then all people goes out of enterprise!
The section is punctuated by Sting giving in to look stress and deciding to check out crotch chops for the primary time:
Scott Corridor gained’t get his title shot till March, having gained all of it the way in which again in November, and it doesn’t even main-event the present as a result of Hogan and Savage resolve to have a cage match for nothing with a Brutus Beefcake end. I’m truthfully stunned Piper didn’t ebook Sting vs. Corridor for SuperBrawl and put himself in one other cage match with Hogan.
Worst: Laborious Occasions For Larry Zbyszko
I’m undecided you may say that is the place the nWo jumped the shark — that was probably at the previous Souled Out, or on the very newest nWo Monday Nitro — however Dusty Rhodes turning heel and becoming a member of to screw Larry Zbyszko out of a match is leaping some kind of marine animal. That is the place the nWo jumped the manatees reserving the present, perhaps?
However yeah, Larry brings Dusty to the ring with him as again as much as counter Louie Spicolli, which is like bringing a tank to counter a Razr scooter. When the ref will get bumped and it’s time to get silly, Dusty will get within the ring and pinballs Louie round with Bionic Elbows, which is GREAT. Larry holds Corridor for an enormous closing blow, and naturally Dusty misses and hits Larry as an alternative. That’s when the grasp plan is revealed: Dusty is nWo four life, and everybody takes turns dropping elbows on Larry.
I’m undecided in the event that they turned Massive Mud as a result of they wanted a coloration commentator for a potential nWo weekly present and couldn’t flip tweener-ass Stagger Lee or in the event that they turned him as a result of they have been turning all people, however except for Corridor casually mentioning Dusty in a promo on Nitro, it’s fully out of the blue. Dusty’s kayfabe explanation is that he was bored with being company and “carrying Tony Schiavone,” and that he wished to maintain the “marks on the Web” from getting a Larry Zbyszko comeback. You recognize the Web, all the time clamoring for extra Larry Zbyszko content material. Dusty’s nice, don’t get me flawed, however you realize who tremendous doesn’t want somebody to speak to him? Scott Corridor.
Worst: Payment-Fi-Foh No
First off, let me say that the “battle of the giants” between Kevin Nash and … uh, The Large is definitely fairly good. It’s bought a wacky overbooked end with Eric Bischoff taking a chokeslam and Nash throwing extra “scorching espresso” into Large’s eyes earlier than low blowing him, but it surely’s bought an sudden quantity of depth for a Kevin Nash match. I imply, he does a leap frog (!!) and throws a plancha. Kevin Nash. I’m not kidding. It’s not nice trying, however shit, he does it. Massive Present liked his “hosses doing cruiserweight stuff” matches manner again when.
The drawback with the match is the precise ending blow, and it’s one you may’ve seen earlier than. It’s imagined to be Nash throwing espresso in Large’s eyes, punching him within the dick and powerbombing him. If you happen to’re like, “wow, I don’t know why he thought he may pull that off,” do not forget that he did the deal flawlessly at SuperBrawl a bit over a 12 months earlier. This time, nevertheless, Nash throws out his again about midway by way of the transfer, loses his grip on the Large, and drops him on his head. It additionally most likely didn’t assist that they have been coated in espresso.
Grotesque. The excellent news is that Large’s neck harm wasn’t as extreme because it may’ve been, and WCW managed to wrangle the scenario right into a “banned powerbomb” angle that gave us Kevin Nash quoting Canine Day Afternoon on Nitro. The humorous half is that instantly after the botch, they lower to Hollywood Hogan on the surface yelling, “I TAUGHT HIM THAT MOVE, YES I DID!” Professional-tip: don’t let Hulk Hogan powerbomb anyone.
Large rightfully lies within the ring for a very long time after the match getting medical assist, which principally equates to the WCW “EMTs” taping up his eyes due to the unforgiving espresso scalding. The announce group retains saying stuff like, “you may see the steam rising off of that espresso!” to essentially promote it, probably as a result of they didn’t need to say “we simply watched a person nearly die accidentally and we’re nonetheless undecided if he’s alive, so let’s not draw consideration to it.”
Worst: The “Primary” “Occasion”
As we’ve already talked about, the primary occasion of the present (as a result of politics) is Macho Man Randy Savage vs. Lex Luger for the [checks notes] nothing. It’s barely a match, is usually stalling and Miss Elizabeth making an attempt to cheat by attacking Lex Luger, after which an nWo run-in. It’s essentially the most purely Nitro factor you’ve ever seen them finish a pay-per-view with, full with Sting making the save and (roughly) an “aw nuts, we gotta go.”
The tenured stars would proceed to place themselves on the prime of the cardboard whether or not the scenario known as for it or not, and ipso facto the present goes down the tubes. I’m not saying they need to’ve strapped a rocket to La Parka or no matter, however when the world desires to see Bret Hart and Goldberg and you retain feeding them nWo run-ins that bought drained in 1996, they’re gonna work out that exciting shit’s happening on the other channel and swap over. And in the event you don’t discover that till it’s too late, nothing you do issues, and your legacy finally ends up being 1/three of a failed “invasion” angle and a bunch of Community specials about how your organization was silly.
One other considered one of Bret Hart’s lame kinfolk exhibits up, the Nitro Ladies and Imply Gene lastly go to that Nitro Celebration winner’s home like they’ve been saying they’re gonna do for months, and Kevin Nash will get arrested by actual law enforcement officials for doing an unlawful professional wrestling transfer that was authorized yesterday. See you then!