Live from Charlotte, NC

Airdate: December 27, 1993

Attendance: 8,000 (7,000 paid)

Hosted by Tony Schiavone and Jesse “The Body” Ventura

The tenth anniversary show opens with a series of photos of Ric Flair as he grew up. Included are a clipping of a newspaper article of the plane crash as well as Flair’s victories over Harley Race at Starrcade ’83 and Ronnie Garvin at Starrcade ’87. Suddenly Vader roars and a sequence of his squashes permeate the introduction. As an added bonus the aftermath of Vader’s powerbomb of Cactus Jack is briefly shown.

<>Tony mentions Vader and Race’s arrival at 2pm and subsequent workout in the ring. Unlike the punctual WCW World Champion his challenger has yet to arrive. “Mean” Gene Okerlund is with Flair (and family) at the Flair household while a chauffeur takes the bags to the limousine. Interestingly, a very young Ashley (current NXT wrestler Charlotte) and Reid (RIP) hug their father as disgruntled teenager David broods in the background along with a worried Beth. After leaving the house, a subdued Flair and Gene discuss the ramifications of tonight’s main event -- if Flair loses he must retire, but if he wins he becomes WCW World Champion.

Match 1: Marcus Alexander Bagwell and Too Cold Scorpio (w/ Teddy Long) versus Pretty Wonderful (w/ the Assassin)


Rating: **

Summary: Very formulaic tag match giving the new tag team of Pretty Wonderful a big boost by beating the former WCW World tag champs. I see bigger things on the horizon for this team.

Gene and Flair are still in the limo on their way to the arena. Was there a traffic jam in Charlotte on this night?

Match 2: The Shockmaster versus Awesome King Kong (w/ King Awesome Kong)


Summary: A short Shockmaster match is infinitely better than a long one. Unfortunately for the 900 pound duo the attempted switcheroo trick failed.

Tony mentions that prior to the telecast Terry Taylor defeated The Equalizer. He and Jesse then discuss The Boss as a replacement for “The British Bulldog” Davey Boy Smith in the International World title match later. In other news, Charlotte’s finest escort the limousine to the arena.

Match 3 for the WCW World TV title: Lord Steven Regal (champion) versus Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat


Rating: ***1/2

Summary: If you enjoy scientific/technical wrestling then this is your match. Plenty of psychology mixed in with a tiny bit of high-flying and workrate make this an extremely good match. A finish would have raised the rating even higher, but Steamboat did his job making Regal look sharp here.

Tony and Jesse continue to discuss Flair and the retirement stipulation of the main event.

Match 4: Shanghai Pierce and Tex Slazenger versus Cactus Jack and Maxx Payne


Rating: *1/2

Summary: Not as bad as I expected, but yes, Foley can carry quite a load.

Okerlund interviews NASCAR driver Kyle Petty who discusses his father’s (Richard Petty) retirement.

Match 5 for the US title (2 out of 3 falls): “The Natural” Dustin Rhodes (champion) versus “Stunning” Steve Austin (w/ Colonel Parker)


Rating: **

Summary: This match either could have been a bloody brawl or a decent wrestling match; however, Rhodes’ ire toward Austin wasn’t a factor until the beginning of the second fall. On top of that both men were capable of using more workrate and fluidity. Oh, and one more thing, this match only lasted 15:54. For a best two out of three falls match? That’s criminally short. How will they make up the PPV time? I’m afraid to find out.

Match 6 for the WCW International World title: “Ravishing” Rick Rude versus The Boss


Rating: 1/2*

Summary: Got a stamp? Rude mailed in another one here. In addition to the legitimacy of the International World title being questioned the poor quality of Rude’s matches in 1993 also devalued its championship value. Thus far the WCW International World title is a joke.

WCW SuperBrawl IV takes place on February 20!

Match 7 for the WCW World Tag Team titles: The Nasty Boys (champions w/ Missy Hyatt) versus Sting and Road Warrior Hawk


Rating: DUD

Summary: How many drugs did the Nasty Boys (allegedly) promise Hawk to be in control for this match? Seriously I realize that the heels normally call a match, but the Nasty Boys are better brawlers than wrestlers and certainly not ring generals. This match was too long and had time-limit draw written all over it before that hasty finish. On the other hand Booking 101 states that a show should not contain more than one time-limit draw so someone didn’t communicate properly somewhere.

Speaking of the finish I mentioned that Missy popped out of her dress. Well, a WCW photographer got a good shot and it ended up on a bulletin board at CNN Center. When Missy discovered it she pleaded with Executive Producer Eric Bischoff to remove it and punish those responsible. After Bischoff’s attempted deflection of the situation Hyatt went over his head to file her complaint. Without hesitation Bischoff fired her prompting a sexual discrimination lawsuit against WCW by Hyatt. In December 1996 the suit was settled out of court.

Call the hotline to talk to Cactus Jack and Maxx Payne after the show!

Match 8 for the WCW World Heavyweight title: Vader (champion w/ Harley Race) versus “Nature Boy” Ric Flair


Rating: ****1/2

Summary:  Excellent David versus Goliath story told here by both men. Flair knew he could not outwrestle the larger Vader; hence, he went toe-to-toe and outlasted him in this tremendously fought battle. Even with a puzzling finish I thought it was absolutely excellent. If you haven’t seen this match, check it out.

On another note this match helped to save WCW as Flair was the placeholder WCW needed after a long and bumpy 1993. To me that adds an extra  ½*.

After the match the crowd gave Flair an elongated standing ovation as confetti fell from the rafters.

Eric Bischoff is with an irate Vader with Harley Race. Vader destroys a locker claiming “I want (the belt) back!”

Flair returns to ringside for a well-deserved curtain call.

Okerlund is in the other locker room with the Flair family. He tries to interview Flair, but Flair’s mouth is too busted up. Instead he interviews Sting who congratulates Flair. Ricky Steamboat appears and gives kudos to Flair.

Conclusion: Consider this show a major WCW reboot. Since Sid Vicious and Arn Anderson were not involved two major matches had to be changed. Most of you already know that Sid was penciled in as WCW World Champion at this show prior to the Blackburn scissors incident. Incidentally Arn Anderson and Paul Roma were scheduled to have a break-up angle and feud here as well. Of all the talent within WCW Erik Watts was chosen to replace Anderson. Additionally Davey Boy Smith’s firing led to Ray Traylor’s receipt of a title shot here. Since WCW was hung out to dry due to all of these situations they could only rely on one man to rescue them—Ric Flair. See you at Clash XXVI!

Buyrate: 0.55

Comments? Suggestions? Send them to me at rsg@rockstargary.com and follow me on Twitter (@rockstargary202).

Custom Search


web counter
web counter