Editor's Note: I encourage you to read both reports. It's an excellent example of how one man's meat is another man's poison.
By Psycho Wellso:
By The Only One I Know:
So, I just got back from the WCW house show in Birmingham, England, and well, er, they might as well NEVER come back as far as I and most of the peeps in the crowd are concerned. Or at least if they do they shouldn't be expecting to sell out the arena again. Yep WCW, with a crowd of 10,000 (and when was the last time that happened at a house show???) the vast majority of whom were paying, screwed up again. The main event sucked, or at least was a huge anti-climax, the card in general was poor, and well some of the matches; if you ever wonder why sometimes people go on about wrestling being fake, Norman Smiley Vs. David Flair and The Harris Boys Vs. The Marmalukes are your reason why.
Well onto the results.......
Norman Smiley d. David Flair (with Daffney) via ?????
So this was my first ever live pro-wrestling match and luckily the wrestling got better but to say this was bad was an understatement. It's a sad fact that a girl took the biggest bump of the match when Smiley pulled Daffeny over the top rope into the ring. The match ended when Norman, spinning Daffney round in a fireman's carry, knocked her into Dave who went down for the count. Considering he's from England, Smiley's pop was minimal which wasn't helped by the fact he was wearing an Aston Villa shirt (a local soccer team over here) with WCW not realizing that England's a small country, the cities are close together so most of the crowd was made up of people (like myself) who hate Villa. But then again if WCW didn't screw EVERYTHING up it just wouldn't be the same. Bottom line, Smiley got booed, Flair got a bigger pop.
Bam Bam d. The Wall via ???
Surprisingly good match. Wall actually got recognition coming into the match, with a few "table" chants. Bam Bam came out to quite a big pop, then did the spiel about The Wall being his former friend etc. Match was pretty well paced which kept it interesting, BBB hit his diving headbutt (after missing the first one) for a delayed two, but the (weirdly weak) ending came when Wall tried to pick up BBB coming off the ropes only to have him fall on top of him for the three. After, Wall gets up, BBB offers a handshake, then we get the chokeslam.
Booker (minus the T but with Harlem Heat theme) d. Fit Finley via Rock Bottom
For me, this was by far the best match of the night especially from a wrestling point of voew. Booker is amazingly athletic and both guys worked hard and stiff through the whole match pulling off all their signature moves culminating in a Rock Bottom from Booker for the three to a great pop. (Second biggest of the night for the people that ACTUALLY wrestled.) Why the hell WCW doesn't elevate Booker is beyond me, maybe the fact he matches all the old guard for size yet waaaay surpasses them for ring ability and athleticism is a reason.
Hacksaw d. Brian Knobbs via multiple shots with the 2x4 in a hardcore match
Hacksaw was over big, as he is everywhere. Crowd forgets what country they belong to a join with the "U.S.A!" chants all through the match. So, I'd originally decided this'd be the match I go out for a drink, but by the time I got back they'd only just finished the pre-match spiel. I could still hear that, though, and it was actually pretty entertaining with Knobbs getting MAJOR heat from ripping on the crowd and Hacksaw coming off pretty funny. As a wrestling spectacle it obviously wasn't the greatest but it was fun all the same with Hacksaw winning after blinding Knobs with the fire extinguisher then taking him out with the 2x4, which surprisingly didn't bend.
Then came the break, and up to this point I was actually enjoying myself. After all the first half is just the build up to the upper card right??? Well you know WCW, wouldn't wanna send a crowd home happy. During the break, the Nitro Girls came out and danced, well three of them, Chae, the blond who's Miss Hancock and another who was pretty fit, too. Right in the middle of the routine Dave Flair comes out, starts dancing with Miss Hancock (in Nitro Girl get up) then starts simulating having sex with her against the turnbuckle to the wondering of many children asking their parents what he was doing. WCW, it's a family show. Norman Smiley and Daffney came out too and I think she crotched Flair after seeing what he was up to, but as before they kissed and made up.
Then, to far and way the biggest pop of the night, Bret Hart came out for his interview. He did some sucking up, explained how he's waited three years to come back over to the U.K and hates how he can't wrestle tonight. Then thanked everybody for their sympathy and well wishes regarding Owen, (which led to HUGE "Owen" chants) before saying a farewell. (To huge "Bret" chants)
The Mamalukes d. The Harris Boys via ????
This match was just terrible, well except for Johnny the Bull who's pretty talented. (He's the one with hair right?) I think between the other three though they'd decided they wouldn't throw a shot that actually came within three inches of making contact, sell moves before they even occurred etc. Harris Boys, make that the nWo music got quite a reaction 'til the Harrises showed up while The Mamalukes came out to near silence and had to beg the crowd for adulation. As I said, match was one more reason (like you needed any) NOT to buy Uncensored and the usual tag team fare. But Johnny the Bull DID really impress me (and the crowd) esp. with his ability to jump from the ring onto the tope rope in a single leap; the rest of them, well I guess their lack of talent makes the old guys look better hence their big pushes. Ending was weird, and lame. Miss Hancock comes out, Vito hits, or should I say misses by quite a distance, his jumping DDT with no ref to make the count. One of the Harris Boys gets a shot on Vito with the belt for a two, while the other (and by this time all the crowds eyes) walks off with Hancock allowing the Marmalukes to get the win, somehow.
Dustin Rhodes (with Curt Hennig's old theme) d. Terry Funk (with Lone Ranger
theme) via an international object
Could the crowd have cared less about Dustin???? Nope. He actually came out to silence. The crowd was actually pretty apathetic when we thought it was Curt Hennig, which explains the droves that left the arena for the main event. Can't be bothered with this one. Chicken spiel to start with. An OK match, though I couldn't care less, resulting in Dustin getting the win and Terry hitting him with a chicken all the way to the back.
Lex Luger d. Vampiro via Torture Rack
Luger comes out, takes so long they have to play his music again and we hadn't even endured the pose down yet. Then he does his 270, 4% bodyfat thing to get some heat. (He actually got a pop when he came out, probably just appreciation from the crowd that someone of main event status actually bothered turning up.) Vampiro's just about to be brought on when the Wolfpac theme hits (to the second biggest pop of the night) and Nash is wheeled out by Chae to tell everyone Liz has to go back, the bat has to go, and the chair has to go 'cause he's commissioner. Then he puts over Vamp pretty big, saying he'll kick Luger's ass. Vamp then makes the entrance to the biggest pop of anyone who actually wrestled and we're off. Match was pretty good, with Luger in three wrestling move shocker (belly to back suplex, a powerslam, then a Goldberg style press slam) but then letting all his "good" work go to waste with the longest bear hug in history. Lex tried the Rack but Vamp wriggled out, got the advantage and was setting up for the win before Liz (in typical WCW booking) came out and clocked him with the bat allowing Lex to rack Vamp. And that was it, well that was it after the crowd spent a good five minutes looking towards the entrance to see if Sting was gonna turn up but of course he didn't.
Curt Hennig d. Ric Flair via Hennigplex
So they got Buffer to hype things up, way to make it even more anticlimactic. He sucked up going on about how we're the best fans in the world most polit,e etc. That was basically just WCW's attempt to cover themselves. Flair made the entrance to a good pop (star factor, of course) before getting heat in the usual way which is pretty funny to witness live. Then a theme hits which, well no one recognized and out came Hennig; cue half the arena getting up and leaving probably so they could make it home in time to watch RAW. (which is on on Friday here) I didn't pay much (as the rest of the crowd) attention to the match as well we've seen it two weeks in a row on Nitro and we actually wanted a main event. Crowd chanted "Goldberg", "We want Sting", "We want Sid" and then, and this was a shocker a large scale "BORING". I say shocker as when the crowd had been bored through the rest of the night they'd resorted to foot stamping and hand claps in an encouragement sort of way, kinda' British reserve. Match ended with Luger running in, who Hennig fended off for a while 'til Buff ran in and took out Luger allowing Hennig to get the Hennigplex for the win. Crowd couldn't have cared much less, well except for the girls that wanted to see Bagwell. Flair did his usual spots, which were pretty entertaining except for when his ass went on display for a good (all too long) while when Hennig grabbed his shorts and wouldn't let go.
And that was about it, and the little kid who was crying at the end because he didn't get to see Sting pretty much summed it all up. You know, they charged £25 per ticket for the show which'd come to around 38 U.S dollars. Now if they did that over there would you expect them to sell out a building??? And the programs they were selling for 7 quid a time tells it's own story as in as in out of all the wrestlers featured, 2 wrestled tonight. Yeah I know there are injuries, but Sid? Jarret? Sting? They coulda left a whole different impression with the people that came to the show. So basically F*** you WCW©, you'll never rip me off again.