William W. in Williamsburg, VA sends the following arena report:
Hey, I attended last night's Thunder taping and thought I would send in this brief arena report.
I have been to several WCW events, but this was my first show in the "new era". Seeing as I think the "product" is terrible now, I was more than a little apprehensive. My two friends and I got to the arena around 6:45 with the show scheduled to start at 7:00 pm. To our surprise, we were able to get fifth row tickets. Even more surprising, when we got to the floor we found our seats right behind the announcers, ostensibly putting us in the second row since they are back a bit.
The show opened with three Worldwide matches, so I was in heaven. Pure, unadulterated wrestling! Needless to say, the guy right next to us shouted "Boring!" several seconds into the second match. I have now seen the face of evil. The highlight was the return of 3 Count. Their opponents came out to the Jung Dragons music, so I was excited, but it turned out to be three unknowns.
Then Thunder started with the usual Vince Russo blab-a-thon. The first match was one of the most baffling matches I have ever seen. Kronic took on Chris Candido and Bam Bam Bigelow. For some odd reason, two minutes (Russo's preferred "crux" point) into the match, Candido starts to unscrew the top turnbuckle in his corner. The top rope begins to sag and then completely falls off. The ref, Mickey Jay, feigns ignorance to the fact the top rope was missing! "Those new relaxed rules", my friend informs me. On a side note, once the show was over, they reshot the match. Apparantly even they saw it as a blunder, even though both matches ended with the same lame ending. It will be interesting to see how they edit this.
Another odd scene was Tank Abbott coming out with Rick Steiner to take on Kanyon and Mike Awesome. My friend pointed out that Steiner turned on Abbott at the Great American Bash PPV only two days previous, decking him with a chain. My only answer was that no one saw the GAB. Also, Kanyon tagging with the man who threw him off the top of a cage? Thankfully, Kanyon did acknowledge he was tagging with the guy who tried to kill him.
The crowd was really into Kevin Nash and Scott Steiner. Also, when Goldberg did his run-in at the end, he ran right by us. It was interesting to hear some chant "Gold-berg!" which was followed by a vocal "Sucks!". I don't know if it will make it into the show, but towards the end, Goldberg and Steiner went at each other and the crowd went nuts. If WCW has any brains, they will build that feud.
All in all, it wasn't a bad show. Just so different from the WCW I used to know.