Hello and welcome to another edition of Seanomaniac Wrestling Reviews, the only wrestling review series on the internet with a smaller viewership than AEW Dark! It’s time for WCW The Great American Bash 1995 with matches featuring The Blue Bloods vs The Nasty Boys for the WCW World Tag Team Championships, Renegade challenging for WCW Television Championship against Arn Anderson. Sting vs Meng to decide who is The WCW United States Champion and Randy Savage taking on Ric Flair as Flair took out Angelo Poffo! No Hogan? Interesting maybe I will enjoy this PPV! Let’s get it on!
Alex Wright vs Flyin’ Brian Pillman
It’s been a long time since I have seen Brian Pillman, poor Pillman was left high and dry as The Hollywood Blondes dissolved and Austin rose up the card and I am guessing Pillman was dealing with some sort of injury that took him out of most of 1994. His opponent is Alex Wright who kicked all sorts of ass in his match with Arn Anderson but can Pillman make Wright look as good in this match?
Wright and Pillman trade wrist-locks, some nice sequences here with both men showing off their agility. Crowd is on PIllman’s side, not looking good for Wright. Corner head-scissors and dropkick from Pillman, snap-mare into a Fujiwara arm-bar. Dropkick and head-scissors from Wright, Wright continues to catch Pillman with his quickness before Pillman avoids the enzuigiri and applies a bow & arrow, side headlock takedown. Wright counters and looks fo a Romero special but Pillman wriggles free, sunset flip for two by Wright. Schoolboy for two, small package for two. Massive chop by Pillman, hammerlock but Wright counters. Elbow by Pillman, Fujiwara arm-bar from Pillman. Wright survives and they begin to trade chops and uppercuts, Pillman is driven into the mat head-first.
Wright tries a dive, Pillman blocks with his knees. Wright is on the apron and suplexes Pillman to the floor, plancha by Wright. Uppercuts by Wright, Wright climbs high as Pillman is dazed. Beautiful missile dropkick for two, Pillman pulls Wright to the floor. Pillman lands a suicide dive, fired up by the crowd. Pillman tries a middle rope dive but Wright dodges! Both men try dropkicks and miss, Pillman is up first and looks for a superplex. Wright counters with the front suplex, diving crossbody for two. Pillman collapses to the mat off an Irish whip, Wright goes again but Pillman goes down once more. Wright tries another crossbody but Pillman lands the dropkick, Pillman climbs high and is thrown onto the top rope by Wright. Wright wants the German, Pillman gets caught and Wright gets a close two. Wright counters a crucifix attempt and gets a big win over Pillman.
Started off slow but this was great as it went on, showing some fantastic wrestling from both men, Pillman does a great job of making Wright look good. It was a tough task due to the match being in Pilllman’s hometown but they pull it off, some great near-falls throughout the match and some good false-finishes. Really happy with how this turned out, let’s see how the PPV continues!
(Arm-Wrestling Match) DDP W/ Diamond Doll & Max Muscle vs Dave Sullivan W/ Ralph The Rabbit
If DDP wins, DDP wins the rabbit but if Dave wins, Dave wins a date with The Diamond Doll. DDP stalls and stalls, Dave and DDP try to win with the crowd getting into the contest. Dave pushes and pushes, Muscle tries to help DDP but the referee sees it so Dave Sullivan wins the date with The Diamond Doll! Luckiest man in the world, DDP is irate! Harmless fun!
Hacksaw Jim Duggan vs Sgt. Craig Pittman
Pittman is massive and angry, Duggan don’t give a shit. Pittman takes the back, Duggan cannot behead Pittman with an elbow so Duggan is frustrated. Pittman does some push-ups because why not am I right? Duggan’s stalling somehow doesn’t drive me insane maybe because he’s slid down the card to where I want him to be, imagine they had Duggan as United States Champion in there with Vader and Austin crazy right? Pittman works the arm, Pittman turns his intentions to the knee of Duggan, Duggan is rammed into the ring-post twice. This is quite vicious actually from Pittman, Duggan manages to fight back with a massive right hand. One knee Duggan gets swept by Pittman who applies a single leg Boston crab, spinning toe-hold by Pittman. Duggan kicks off Pittman, rights and lefts by Duggan. Duggan lands a scoop-slam and lands a clothesline too, Three-Point Stance is absorbed by Pittman. Did he really no-sell Duggan’s finish? Pittman applies Code Red, his cross-arm-breaker finish and Duggan wins by DQ.
Shite but passable shite as I like Duggan and Duggan makes things interesting enough in this one, kind of surprised they worked the leg for so long considering well you know his finish is an arm-bar. How utterly ridiculous like why bother working the leg?
Winner: Hacksaw Jim Duggan over Craig Pittman via DQ!
Bunkhouse Buck & Dick Slater vs Harlem Heat
Colonel Parker is continuing to manage Buck? I see very interesting well Buck teamed with Anderson and Terry Funk but Anderson is more with Flair now and Funk is gone so we have Dick Slater who many people would think of Terry Funk-lite although Slater had some great performances in him for sure that made him stand out. Anyways, not sure if there are babyfaces in this one but we are starting with a brawl as expected. Booker stomps Buck to the floor, Slater is looking to powder which he does eventually.
Booker and Stevie Ray take turns wiping out Buck, Stevie is wearing a shirt under his singlet, not sure what the deal is there maybe he’s hurt. Stevie sits in a front chancery with Buck, tag to Booker. Booker lands a dropkick, Buck tags in Slater. Slater drop toe-holds Booker, Booker scrambles out into a hammerlock. Stevie and Slater slug it out, Slater loses that war. Snap-mare into a reverse chin-lock from Stevie, tag to Booker. Slater drags Booker to the corner, Buck comes in and loses control as Booker lands a scoop slam. Slater tags in, Slater chops and chops Stevie. Tag to Buck, Buck has his eyes poked. Side headlock by Stevie, Slater lands a shot from the apron. Buck lands a boot and down goes Stevie, Stevie is beaten down on the floor before Booker lands a dropkick and flying forearm. Small package on Buck, Colonel Robert Parker rolls over the small package. Sherri rolls over the small package again and Harlem Heat win the match.
Well the crowd don’t really like either team which makes it awkward and then the match itself ain’t very good either so it is very on-point for WCW at this point.
Winners: Harlem Heat over Bunkhouse Buck & Dick Slater via Small Package!
(WCW World Television Championship Match) The Renegade vs Arn Anderson ©
The Warrior rip-off lives! Renegade is here to take on the man who was a pain at ringside during the main event of the Slamboree. Jimmy Hart is here with Renegade so maybe Anderson will get some heat on Hart?
Anderson jumps Renegade, rights and lefts to the ribs. Renegade whips Anderson to the opposite buckle, clothesline by the rookie powerhouse. Anderson lands a corner clothesline, Renegade takes down Anderson with two clotheslines and one clothesline to the floor. Renegade jumps to the floor, Anderson is running from the big man. Anderson wants the DQ win but no dice, side headlock by Renegade. Anderson tries a hip-toss but Renegade tosses off Anderson. Another side headlock by Renegade, Anderson shoves off Renegade and applies the abdominal stretch. Renegade reverses the hold, Anderson shoves Renegade to the corner. Shoulder thrusts by Anderson, Renegade whips Anderson to the opposite buckle but Anderson counters with an elbow. Sleeper by Anderson, sleeper by Renegade. Belly to back suplex by Anderson, Anderson uses the top rope to choke Renegade.
Reverse chin-lock by Anderson, Renegade escapes but gets caught by the spinebuster for a close two. Anderson wants to pin the shoulders of Renegade to the mat but Renegade is up. Whip to the buckle, Renegade lands an atomic drop but both men bang heads. Corner Samoan drop by Renegade, Renegade climbs high. Diving Top Rope Splash and we have a winner!
Wow was not expecting that, I just praised Anderson for all the great work he was doing as Television Champion and now they have given Renegade the championship and you can see from the beginning how limited Renegade seems to be at this time of his career. Anderson does his best but even the crowd wants to see Anderson pick up the win for the most part, nice splash by Renegade though I will give him that.
Winner: Renegade over Arn Anderson via Top Rope Diving Splash!
(WCW World Tag Team Championship Match) The Nasty Boys © vs The Blue Bloods
Bobby Eaton is back on my TV! I am so happy I don’t even care that it is The Nasty Boys in a non-brawling environment I will sit through it for Eaton. Everyone loves Eaton and talks about how good Eaton is so how is it that this man has gone almost 2 years without being on my screen?
We start brawling, Sags attacks Regal with his jacket while Eaton and Knobbs brawl up the ramp. Here I was thinking that they would not brawl but Eaton & Regal are playing to their strengths in this one. Regal has a horrified look on his face as Sags drills him into the guardrail and ring-post. Sags and Knobbs continue to batter the challengers, double shoulder block for Eaton and a corner beatdown for Regal. Back body drop and Regal is sent to a pit-stop. Corner splash on Eaton, Eaton takes a trip to pity city also. Eaton and Regal are thrown around by Knobbs, big clotheslines and such before Knobbs misses a crossbody and lands on the floor.
Regal lands a diving elbow drop to the head, Regal is legal now and uses forearms to batter Knobbs, Eaton gets involved from the apron as Sags comes in and decks Regal. Elbow drop by Regal for one, Sags fights back and sends Eaton to the apron after a slam. Regal behind the referee’s back comes in and tosses Sags to the floor. Sags is plodding around, I think Knobbs forgot his cue to distract the referee. Eventually, Sags is rammed into the apron. Sags is left on the apron, knee-drop by Eaton. Eaton is legal now and applies a camel clutch, crowd comes alive for Knobbs. Sags comes alive but Eaton cuts that off, Regal comes in and misses a senton so Knobbs gets the hot-tag and its surprisingly lukewarm. Knobbs slams Regal, Eaton makes the save. Knobbs and Regal bang heads, here comes Stevie Ray and Sherri. Booker T is here, Harlem Hangover but when Booker hopes over the rope, Eaton falls balls-first on the turnbuckle and Sags lands his elbow on Eaton with Knobbs to cover for the win.
Well it’s a bit comical really, I am happy to see Regal and Eaton back on my screen, both men had been forgotten really as the years went on, shockingly with Regal considering how good 1993 and the start of 1994 was for Regal. The Nasty Boys continue to suck outside of hardcore brawl matches, not hard to figure out that it’s the only style of match they can do on PPV yet they don’t want to do it. So, tag team wrestling in WCW ain’t my thing at all.
Winners: The Nasty Boys over The Blue-Bloods via Diving Elbow!
(WCW United States Heavyweight Championship Tournament Finals) Sting vs Meng W/ Colonel Robert Parker
What is interesting about the recap for this is the competitors in the tournament, many a forgotten relic of Flair’s reign as booker as we see Austin is still alive and kicking, Johnny B. Badd, Paul Orndorff and Pillman there too. All men who had done well throughout 1993 yet when 1994 and Hogan came around, things came crashing down quite quickly. Meng has been well protected a loss would not hurt him while Sting is too popular not to be pushed, I expect this to deliver.
Meng uses his martial arts to push Sting back to the corner, Sting has to think about it. They go nose to nose, throat chop from Meng. Meng unloads on Sting, rights and lefts plus headbutts of the vicious variety. Sting is down, Meng tortures Sting with more body-shots and a choke in the corner. Meng has Sting on his knees, not looking good for The Stinger. Sting blocks and kicks back at Meng, right hands stagger Meng. Dropkick doesn’t knock Meng, Parker talks advice with Meng. Meng takes the eyes and clubs Sting, kicks to the neck and ribs. Chop in the corner, brutal chops from Meng. Forearm shot, Sting rakes the eyes and lands a dropkick. Sting misses a crossbody and is on the apron, elbow from Meng. Sit-out powerbomb from Meng for two, Meng has a shoulder claw on Sting. Meng throws Sting to the floor, Colonel Parker lands some shots before Sting is back in the ring. Sunset flip attempt by Sting but Meng counters with a massive throat thrust.
Another shoulder claw, Sting escapes and goes toe to toe with him. Backslide attempt but Meng is too strong, Sting uses the buckle to flip and lands a middle rope ass to the face basically. Meng is up first, maybe they banged heads? Middle rope headbutt by Meng, two for Meng. Sting lands clotheslines, Meng wants more. Flying clothesline by Sting, face-buster by Sting. Inverted atomic drop and Sting clotheslines himself and Meng to the floor. Sting decks Colonel Parker and Meng misses a splash and smacks his head off the ring-post. Scorpion Death-Lock! Middle of the ring! Can Meng survive? Meng is powering up and shoves off Sting, Sting looks on in shock. Meng has his legs chopped by Sting, Sting climbs high. Diving clothesline by Sting, diving splash for a close two. Sting lands a jumping DDT and Meng has been beaten!
Solid stuff from these two, Sting finally is being built up again and not just as a background player, very happy for The Stinger. Sting controls the crowd well and keeps them engaged as Meng does what Meng does best: whoop ass and look mean while doing it. Crowd was into it, lots of energy and Sting had to work for the win, good way to make Meng look like a tough son of a bitch to keep down.
Winner: Sting over Meng via Jumping DDT!
Ric Flair vs Randy Macho Man Savage
Flair retired after his loss to Hogan at Halloween Havoc 1994, WCW had no intention of having Flair retire so they went back on that stipulation mere months later by having Flair be so annoying that Savage & Hogan wished for Flair to be a member of the roster once more just so they can kick his ass. To give this angle a bit of steam, Flair put the figure four on the father of Randy Savage. Savage and Hogan had already beaten Flair and Vader on PPV so yeah, that kind of takes away the appeal of Flair coming back but this company hadn’t a clue for quite some time now so this is nothing new for me.
Savage is all business here coming up against Flair, Flair chops Savage but Savage lands an elbow and tees off on Flair. Running corner elbow and back body drop by Savage, clothesline by Savage. Flair is clotheslined to the floor, Savage looks to fly. Diving axe handle to the floor, Flair manages to send Savage into the ring-post. Flair goes to work now, snap-mare into the knee-drop. Savage is hurt badly, his father is giving advice. Savage goes after Flair but Flair chops Savage, Savage lands right hands. Savage chokes Flair in the corner, Savage works the ribs and face. Right hand floors Flair, Flair is begging for mercy. Savage ground-pounds Flair and continues choking The Nature Boy, Flair is holding his face on the floor. Savage lands an axe handle to the back and sends Flair into the guardrail. Flair manages to regain control, Flair climbs high but Savage catches Flair and yanks off Flair.
Flair scrambles to the ropes to avoid a piledriver, Irish whip and Flair flip to the floor. Flair attacks Angelo Poffo, Savage saves his dad but Flair clips the knee. Shin-breaker using the guardrail, Flair chop-blocks Savage again in the ring. Flair stretches the leg, Savage hurls Flair to the apron. Like a wild beast, Savage throws everything at Flair. Figure Four Leg-Lock! Flair is in trouble though as Savage reverses the hold, Flair has to let go of the hold. Flair misses a top rope elbow drop, Flair chops Savage in the corner. Savage is fighting back and out-firing Flair. Flair Flip to the apron, clothesline by Savage. Two for Savage, scoop slam by Savage. Savage Diving Elbow Drop! 1…2.. Savage wants to deliver more punishment. Savage has a ring-bell, the referee is irate. The referee takes away the bell, Savage decides to climb high once more. Flair is on the floor, Savage dives but meets the guardrail. Flair lands shots to the eyes of Savage and chokes out Savage. Angelo Poffo attacks Flair with the cane, Flair knocks out Savage’s father. Flair has the cane in the ring, Savage is waffled with the cane in the face. Flair covers and Flair wins the match!
Intense and plenty of heat for this one and shockingly, right man wins this match. Flair had been on quite the losing streak against the big WWF guys so to have Flair go over Savage is big here, they can continue to build the feud between the two. Quite ballsy with Angelo Poffo at ringside too to have Savage not go over, good stuff from WCW in the main event. Savage is one of my favourite sellers from this era and possibly of all-time, Savage looks like he has been through hell and sells everything like death.
Winner: Ric Flair over Randy Savage via Cane To The Head!
That was WCW’s Great American Bash 1995, another poor performance from WCW. WCW are trying things for sure but I am not sure if any of those things are truly paying off for the company, Alex Wright vs Pillman is solid but the fans do not want to cheer for the young babyface that WCW is so desperately trying to build in Wright, there is not light heavyweight championship so Wright and Pillman don’t have that much direction in the company, Pillman seems to be coming back off an extended absence and the beloved high-flyer has to be built again from nothing to get back to where he was years prior and I have no faith in WCW to pull that off. The arm-wrestling contest is harmless fun, no real complaints there. Duggan vs Pittman is bad, very bad and just not entertaining in any way. I am glad Duggan has slotted into a role that allows him to do what he does best but Pittman is not bringing the best out of Duggan even on his best day if a best day Pittman actually exists. Buck & Slater vs Harlem Heat is two heel teams beating one another up, fans don’t know who to cheer for so it’s awkward, shame considering how much I like Buck & Slater but I don’t see a future for this team. The tag team championship match is not much better, I don’t need to see Nasty Boys without their brawling and the finish was rather comical when this could have been a chance to showcase the legitimate threat of Regal & Eaton. Renegade vs Anderson was solid, Anderson takes care of Renegade and makes him look as good as he can but the booking of the television championship has been baffling even during Regal’s reign, Johnny B. Badd should have been elevated and I don’t think Renegade is going to escape the same fate as Badd. Sting vs Meng is entertaining due to the crowd’s love of Sting, Sting is their guy and Sting gets big reactions and after years of pointless tags and being a backup to whoever it may be, Flair Hogan or Savage, Sting gets some shine finally by winning the United States Championship and Meng takes his first loss but looks like an animal in the process, not a bad day in the office. Finally, the main event between Savage and Flair two men who had good chemistry dating back to their Wrestlemania match. Savage is great here while Flair puts on a typical main event performance and the finish is a shock to me as Flair gets some steam put behind him which is shocking considering how he’s been treated the last year and a half so I am happy to see it and there is some fire added to this feud now. However, don’t be so sure that Flair and Savage won’t get wrapped up into whatever Hogan wants to do next. A year into the Hogan Era and it’s proving a tough watch, how WCW went from this to the NWO looks more like a miracle each day but I am interested to see the transition so let’s keep watching right? Thanks for reading and remember: there’s always another night!