Written By: Matt Peddycord
WCW Great American Bash
July 14, 1991
The current WCW Champs were as follows:
World Champion: Vacant (7/1/1991)
U.S. Champion: Lex Luger (12/16/1990)
World Television Champion: Steve Austin (6/3/1991)
World Tag Team Champions: Rick & Scott Steiner (3/9/1991)
U.S. Tag Team Champions: Freebirds (5/19/1991)
World Six-Man Tag Team Champions: Michael Hayes, Jimmy Garvin and Badstreet (6/3/1991)
Your hosts are Jim Ross & Tony Schiavone!
PN News & Bobby Eaton vs. Steve Austin & Terrence Taylor (w/Lady Blossom) – Scaffold Match
Scaffold matches can be kind of fun and dramatic, but only when you have a hot tag team feud going on and this is not a tag team feud at all. Sure, these are tag teams put together because of two singles feuds, but these are not teams that compete on a regular basis that would create any sort of rivalry here. That alone makes this a dumb idea, especially for an opener. At least in every other scaffold match I’ve ever seen, the winners are decided by the last man who is on the scaffold. That is one way to win this one, but the other is by the “capture the flag” rules. Hmm, wonder which one is safer and would disappoint the crowd? There is a flag on each end of the scaffold, and if Eaton grabs Austin and Taylor’s flag and brings it back to his side of the scaffold, then his team is declared the winner. Oh wait, I just told you the finish to the match, didn’t I? Looks like I just saved myself the trouble of trying to transcribe this match. Nobody falls from the scaffold and nothing exciting happens. There. I’m done. (6:19) No, really, all they do is try and walk around on the scaffold. CRAP
Eric Bischoff meets with Paul E and Arn Anderson. Paul E says if there was any other man with him besides Arn Anderson, Rick Steiner might have a chance tonight. It is ON!
The Diamond Studd (w/Diamond Dallas Page) vs. Tom Zenk
Studd has a girl rip off his workout pants, Zenk brings four girls out on his arm. Oh yeah, this is to prove who the biggest “stud” is in WCW. Zenk starts off hot and heavy as he dives into the ring on Studd and DDP. They run the ropes a bit, but then Page pulls down the top-rope to bring Zenk crashing out to the floor. Studd follows him out and then throws him into the front row. Back in, Studd takes Zenk from buckle to buckle, but Zenk gets in a desperation crossbody. Studd cheats in the abdominal stretch and then hits the chokeslam. Arrogant cover *slash* bicep pose never works and it doesn’t here either as Studd gets rolled up for two. Zenk comes back with a side kick and they go to the floor again for some guardrail action. Back in, Zenk hits the MISSILE DROPKICK for 1-2-NO! Page makes the save and gets pulled into the ring for another side kick, but it’s Studd who comes up behind Zenk for the bridging back suplex for the win. (9:00) Actually one of the better matches on this show. *
Ron Simmons vs. Oz (w/The Grand Wizard)
The Grand Wizard is Kevin Sullivan under one of those Oz masks. I’m sure you all know who Oz is. This gimmick is just SO bad. I just can’t say that enough. Boring chants go up throughout this one. I mean, LOUD ones. Crowd finally does pop for something on this show once Simmons puts Oz on the floor after a bunch of clotheslines. Back in, we get a test of strength and some Oz offence or Oz-fence. Simmons makes his big comeback and wins with a jumping shoulderblock. (7:55) Big pop for Simmons as he’s moving on up to become a main event-level star. ½*
It’s time for the WCW Top 10 for the weekend of July 13-14!
10. Johnny B. Badd
9. Ron Simmons
8. Diamond Studd
7. El Gigante
6. Arn Anderson
5. Bobby Eaton
4. WCW World TV Champion Steve Austin
2. Barry Windham
1. WCW U.S. Champion Lex Luger
Robert Gibson vs. Richard Morton (w/Alexandra York)
This is the blowoff to the RnR Express break-up. Don’t cry though, they’d be back together in SMW the next year. They fight on the rampway to make you think this is going to be a real barn burner to start. Once all that is over, Morton becomes all heelish and stalls a bunch. Gibson punches Morton towards a corner, but gets pulled face-first into the turnbuckle. Morton posts Gibson’s recently repaired knee and then works it over. There’s nothing but boring legwork for the next ten minutes until Gibson hits a desperation DDT. Gibson’s knee buckles off a backdrop, but he comes back with an enziguri that sends Morton to the rampway. Alexandra York gets up on the apron and as the two men return to the ring, Morton nails Gibson with York’s laptop for the win. (17:03) I guess the leg stuff was all well and good, but you’d expect the Rock n Roll Express to be you know, fast-paced. *
Eric Bischoff makes his WCW PPV debut doing an interview with the Young Pistols and Dustin Rhodes. Oh, they’re ready.
The Young Pistols & Dustin Rhodes vs. The Freebirds & Badstreet (w/Big Daddy Dink) – Elimination Match
The WCW World six-man tag titles aren’t on the line here because a certain booker’s son has to go over. Badstreet is Brad Armstrong in a weird neon-colored outfit and a mask. His look just doesn’t make any sense as to why he’d be with the Freebirds. That’s 1991 WCW for you. Mixed “We Want Flair” and “Freebirds suck” chants going on at the start of this thing. Dustin mocks Hayes and then slams both Freebirds before the elbows send them out to regroup. Back in, Garvin buries a knee in Dustin’s back as he comes off the ropes to take over, but then the Freebirds telegraph a backdrop and both take face slams. All six men are in, and Dustin delivers more elbows for the Young Pistols to come off the top with shoulderblocks for the Freebirds. More stalling from the Freebirds, as they want the crowd to get into just ONE match tonight. Smothers quickly whiffs on a dropkick, but a blind tag to Armstrong makes everything okay. Smothers tags back in and gets dumped for some Big Daddy Dink action. Back in, Smothers tries to flip out of the corner off a whip, but Hayes catches him with that left jab and sends him crashing to the guardrail. Back in again, Smothers gets isolated with a sleeper hold. He tries to come back with some ten-count corner punches, but Hayes shoves him off and pops him again with the left jab. Garvin comes in for a bit for some more sleeper holding, but then Badstreet tags in and delivers a nice swinging neckbreaker to Smothers for two. Smothers gets a desperation sunset flip, but Badstreet kicks out at two and tags in Hayes. He connects with another left jab and goes for the DDT, but Smothers escapes with a backdrop. If Flair was still around, this would’ve been a hot tag, but now it’s just a tag to Armstrong. Reality bites! He goes DROPKICK CRAZY until it turns into a pier-six brawl with everybody involved. While Armstrong goes for Badstreet’s mask, Hayes dumps Smothers and drops Armstrong with a running clothesline. DOUBLE-DDT along with Badstreet puts Armstrong away. (13:49) Smothers charges at Hayes as he’s up against the ropes and gets flipped out to the floor. Ref sees it and DQ’s Hayes to even the teams again. (14:04) Smothers gets dominated by the heels and a false tag spot occurs because of Big Daddy Dink’s big self is standing up on the apron. That gets Smothers plastered with a DOUBLE-DDT for the 1-2-3. (15:16) Dustin Rhodes comes out of nowhere and nails Garvin with a lariat for the three-count. (15:24) Badstreet tries to put Dustin out with flying double-sledges and elbow drops, but he comes off the top one time too many and gets nailed on the way down. Rhodes follows up with a lariat, but Dink is with the ref again. Its enough distraction for Dustin to only get a two-count. Badstreet reverses a cross-corner whip, but it’s Rhodes who catches him with a BULLDOG and dropkicks Dink out of the ring on the way down to win it all. (17:10) The Freebirds spent 80% of the match trying just to light a spark under the butts of this crowd, which actually makes this match no different than any other Freebirds match I’ve seen. *½
The Yellow Dog (w/man’s best friend…it’s an actual yellow dog) vs. Johnny B. Badd (w/Teddy Long)
Yellow Dog is Brian Pillman under a yellow mask and yellow tights, only no one can actually prove its him without unmasking him. The only people who are fooled by the charade is the WCW board members. It’s SOOOOOO retarded. Anyways, he lost a “loser leaves WCW” match at the last Clash. If he’s unmasked and found to be Brian Pillman, he’ll be banned from WCW forever. If it’s not, then the Yellow Dog can stay. The person who can unmask Pillman gets $10,000. Johnny is EXTREMELY gay here. JR ~ (reading sign) “‘We love Johnny B. Badd’. Well let’s hope your mom doesn’t see that.” He’s only kidding, folks! After that, Pillman looks straight into the camera and says, “Johnny no be bad, Johnny be GAY!” Haha. Onto the match, this is definitely Badd’s biggest match to date. It almost baffles me as to why he’s in this match, but anyways. Real basic Pillman match to start. Teddy Long gets up on the apron for some reason. Johnny gets dropkicked into him and a brawl erupts on the floor. Back in, Johnny hits a flying sunset flip for two. Badd goes for the mask, but Pillman comes back with a flying crossbody block for 1-2-NO! Long runs in and tries to pull off the mask, but that’s a DQ, Teddy! (6:00) Pillman rocks Long with a jumping clothesline, but Badd nails him with the KISS THAT DON’T MISS. Rather lame, but it’s actually one of the few matches where the crowd actually responded. *
For the past two PPVs, Missy Hyatt has attempted to get interviews from the men’s locker room, but has failed both times thanks to Stan Hansen. Now Eric Bischoff is trying to get an interview from the women’s locker room, but he catches Missy in the shower and she screams “PEEPING TOM”. We’ve all got to start somewhere, Eric.
Big Josh vs. Blackblood – Lumberjack Match
Josh comes out with a entourage of blonde chicks for some reason. Is he trying to be the biggest stud in WCW too? Geez. The lumberjacks are PN News, Bobby Eaton, Junkyard Dog, Dustin Rhodes, Black Bart, Dick Slater, Dick Murdoch and Richard Morton. Pretty much your typical lumberjack affair. Face gets thrown out to the heel lumberjacks, they beat up on the face until the face lumberjacks come over to help until all the lumberjacks start fighting each other. During one of the melees on the floor, Blackblood grabs his axe to apparently chop off Big Josh’s head, but Rhodes saves him by hitting Blackblood in the knee with Josh’s axe handle to set up an inside cradle for the 1-2-3. (5:39) Billy Jack Haynes would be history soon enough. CRAP
One Man Gang (w/Kevin Sullivan) vs. El Gigante (w/four midgets)
Yeah, Kevin Sullivan and OMG are definitely sniffing something. Don’t ask why there’s midgets, because I have no clue. Sullivan and OMG chopped off Gigante’s hair and now he wants revenge. I feel like I’ve seen that somewhere before with another giant wrestler. Hmm. Back and forth big man stuff until OMG pulls out a wrench and works Gigante over with it while the ref is with Sullivan. 747 SPLASH connects, but Gigante presses him off at two. OMG climbs up top, but Gigante slams him down and gives OMG a suplex. Sullivan’s interference fails and he takes the CLAWHOLD. OMG breaks it up and pulls out some powder, but he gets it thrown back in his face. Clothesline from behind puts OMG down for the 1-2-3. (6:13) I think the booking staff is sniffing the same stuff that OMG and Sullivan have. I mean, what else would cause someone to book these two to go six minutes besides a little glue up the ol’ nostrils? CRAP
Nikita Koloff vs. Sting – Russian Chain Match
This is Nikita’s specialty match and one he supposedly had never lost. Sting takes Koloff in and out of the ring choking him with the chain. He taps two turnbuckles, but Koloff kicks him away. They go to the floor again where Sting pulls Nikita into the ringpost. Back in, Koloff wraps the chain around his arm and elbow drops Sting a bunch. The crowd is just dead silent and this is the show’s hottest feud. Sting comes back as he avoids an elbow drop and yanks the chain up between Nikita’s legs. Koloff goes to the eyes and taps three corners, but Sting stops him again. Koloff grabs a bearhug and they end up simultaneously touching two corners before Sting breaks loose and fires back. They exchange low blows, and ref Randy Anderson still allows them to touch the third corner. Sting fights back and tries to reach the fourth corner, but Nikita puts him down with a SICKLE. Koloff slowly walks over to the fourth corner. Before he makes it there, Sting makes a last ditch effort with a Stinger Splash to reach the corner, but Nikita touches the fourth corner just in the nick of time to win. (11:38) Very little heat whatsoever except for the low blows. *½
Barry Windham vs. Lex Luger – Cage Match for the vacant WCW World Title
As no surprise to anyone, there’s thunderous “We Want Flair” chants right from the get-go. In case you’re unaware, this was supposed to be Flair vs. Luger for the title. The reason this was changed was of course because of Ric Flair being fired by Jim Herd, but I won’t get into the details here because I feel that fact is pretty well-documented here in 2007. Although I’ve said it before and I’ll say it on this review as well, I don’t see why people make the argument that whether or not Barry Windham deserved to be in this spot. He had taken Flair to the limit many times (even if it was back in 1987) and remained one of WCW’s top guys ever since. Also, what other heel besides Barry Windham would’ve been better suited for this last minute change when your #1 heel and company-carrier was just CANNED by your Exec. VP of the company? Sid’s gone, and as great as Arn was, he was never really world championship status. Furthermore, Arn’s close friends with Ric Flair so I don’t think he would accept the spot anyways. Who else, I ask you, who else? Back and forth match that stays extremely basic almost to the end. The coolest part of the match is when Windham kicks off the cage to escape the TORTURE RACK. Windham hits a back suplex and then follows up with a flying lariat, but Luger doesn’t sell it. Windham hits another lariat, but Luger just won’t stay down. He heads up again and this time, he drops Lex with a missile dropkick for 1-2-NO! By this point, the crowd looks to be forgetting about Flair for a moment and they’re actually getting into the match. The Windham near-fall cues Harley Race and his new bodyguard Mr. Hughes to come down and motivate Luger. Hughes distracts Windham until Lex nails him from behind and gives him a PILEDRIVER to finish and become the NEW WCW World Champion. (12:25) Crowd cheers because they think they’re getting a face champion, but that proves to not be the case. They still want Flair. **
Arn Anderson & Paul E. Dangerously vs. Rick Steiner & Missy Hyatt – Cage Match
Why this was picked to go last, I’ll never know. The World title being decided should always be the last thing you see, IMO. This was originally supposed to be Arn/Barry/Paul E vs. Rick/Scott/Missy in a cage, but Flair being fired and Scott Steiner’s recent bicep injury caused both main events to be changed. The Hardliners (Dick Slater and Dick Murdoch) kidnap Missy before she even gets in the cage. If they really wanted to make a difference, they should’ve kidnapped Rick Steiner. Arn bumps around for Rick’s usual stuff for about a minute. A double-team fails and Paul E takes a Steinerline for the 1-2-3. (2:08) Whatever. CRAP
Final Thoughts: I literally had to take a break from watching this show after OMG/Gigante because it was screwing with my mind. Many experts call this the worst PPV ever. I personally haven’t seen every PPV ever, but I can’t imagine one being worse. Whether to give a recommendation for it or not depends on your perspective; thumbs up because it’s SUCH an infamous show, and thumbs down BECAUSE it’s such an infamous show. See, this show is still screwing with logic.