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ThunderStruck: WCW Monday Nitro Retro Review 10/02/95

Live from Denver, Colorado, it’s WCW Monday Nitro! We’ve got Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan and Steve McMichael(with his tiny dog) on commentary. Ric Flair comes out to the announce tabl as the show starts and takes Bischoff’s headset. He tells Arn Anderson that it’s going to be a mile high night that he’ll never forget.

^Smart television to hype a match with one of the participants right as the show starts. Fans loved to see Flair back then and a match with Arn Anderson on free tv was considered a rare treat.

We see a flashback of Macho Man and Lex Luger from the past couple weeks and their involvement with the Dungeon of Doom.

Lex Luger takes on Macho Man Randy Savage in our FIRST match tonight! As Luger comes to the ring, Bischoff reminds us that you can call the WCW Hotline and hear about everything that is happening on WWF Raw tonight(Hunter Hearst Helmsley vs Barry Horowitz and Bret Hart vs Jean Pierre Lafitte in case you were wondering). Macho Man has got his traditional multi color outfit on as he comes to the ring and stares down Luger.

The ref gets knocked out nine minutes into the match as Savage goes for the flying elbow and there is no one to count for him. The Giant comes to the ring and chokeslams Savage before leaving. Luger puts Savage in the rack and he’s unconscious so the ref ends it. Luger wins the match.

^Even with the interference, that ten minutes of wrestling may be the best match on Nitro thus far. Where was this one on the best of Nitro dvd set? Savage and Luger put on main event quality action here and it was damn good as they tore one another apart all over ringside. Now we have some questions about Luger’s loyalty since the Dungeon of Doom helped him get the win here.

This Saturday night on TBS, Flyin Brian and Arn Anderson take on Bunkhouse Buck and Dirty Dick Slater, we’ll see Johnny B. Badd in action AND we’ll have Hacksaw Jim Duggan taking on Big Bubba(Boss Man). WCW Saturday Night is the most watched wrestling show on the weekends.

Disco Inferno comes out dancing when Bischoff announces that Dean Malenko will take on Eddie Guerrero right now. Eddie Guerrero ocmes out and confronts the Disco Inferno as he sends him to the back.

Eddie Guerrero takes on Dean Malenko. Guerrero gets the win on a victory roll counter after five and a half minutes of great action.

^The audience didn’t know much about Eddie Guerrero as he was new to WCW at the time and had only competed in Mexico and ECW(back when the internet was VERY VERY new). I don’t think the crowd in Denver knew how to appreciate this sort of technical action mixed with the high flying spots like Guerrero diving to the outside off the top rope onto Malenko. Solid match for being so short!

Hulk Hogan comes to the ring with Jimmy Hart and he’s still got the neck brace. Hogan runs his mouth and says he’s going to head to the back to rip apart the Giant. Someone from the Dungeon of Doom(dressed as a woman) jumps out of the audience with a cane and attacks Hogan. It’s Kevin Sullivan. The Zodiac and the Giant come to the ring and the Giant wrenches Hogan’s head around. Sullivan shaves off Hogan’s mustache with clippers(he had a movie to film at that time). Scotty Riggs comes out to help and he gets slammed by the Giant as does Bagwell. The Nasty Boys comes down for the save and they get taken out as well. They cut Hogan’s hair next.

^Good hype for the World Title rivalry. Good push for the Giant as a top title contender. You could feel WCW putting huge emphasis on their top heel competitor in the Giant, and this is something that has huge value for a booking team even today in wrestling. It’s all about the fan’s perception of the top heel and how dangerous he can be.

Ric Flair takes on Arn Anderson in the main event. Flair wins the match in eight and a half minutes by submission as Flyin Brian comes off the top rope onto Flair. Pillman and Anderson beat down Flair after the match.

^That was a solid old school match to finish off the wrestling portion of the show. Flair and Anderson could have done so much more in a rivalry together if it had been allowed; I could see the World Title being a great prop for their feud if Hogan hadn’t been carrying it around during that time.

Bischoff tells us Flair and Arnderson will go one on one inside a steel cage next week in Chicago at the Rosemont! Sting will face the Shark, Sabu will face Mr. JL and Road Warrior Hawk will take on Big Bubba!

This ONE HOUR episode featured a mid 90s style main event between Luger and Savage, a cruiserweight technical wrestling battle between Guerrero and Malenko, and a 1980s style main event with that old school feel to it. Talk about an exceptional variety for a one hour program! Where the hell were these three matches on the best of Nitro sets produced by WWE? I give this Nitro a 10/10 for PERFECT booking.

Thanks for reading!