The SmarK Retro Repost – Halloween Havoc 1991

– Live from Chatanooga, Tennessee

– Your hosts are Jim Ross and Tony Schiavone, something you don’t see

everyday.

– Before we get started, Eric Bischoff is working as a parking valet

outside, and welcomes various people to Havoc. When he gets to Barry

Windham, Arn Anderson and Larry Zbyszko rush into the scene and slam the

door on Windham’s hand, breaking it. This is how Larry got the

“Cruncher” nickname.

– Opening match: Chamber of Horrors. Big Van Vader, Diamond Studd,

Abdullah the Butcher and Cactus Jack v. Sting, Rick Steiner, Scott

Steiner and El Gigante. Here’s the concept: Eight guys in a big cage,

and the only way to win the match is to…wait for it…put your

opponent in an electric chair and pull the lever. This match made Netcop

Busts without a second thought, in case there was a doubt. Besides the

obvious faults, this match suffers from several other faults. For

instance, the lack of a flow or storyline. Also, the camera work is

awful, constantly pulling back for a wide shot when there’s no way to

see through the huge cage. The crowd is dead because there’s just no way

to follow what’s going on. It’s a big brawl for about 10 minutes, with

Sting, Cactus and Abdullah all bleeding. Abby gets put into the chair

and after a contrived sequence, Cactus Jack pulls the switch and Abby is

“electrocuted” to give the faces the win. I can’t even rate this, it was

too weird. Jack and Sting took some nice bumps, the rest is hit-or-miss.

– The Creatures v. Big Josh & PN News. The Creatures are Joey Maggs and

someone else under masks. And this is a squash. Yo baby, yo baby, yo,

this also made Netcop Busts. News gets the pin with the Big Fat-Assed

Splash. DUD

– Bobby Eaton v. Terrence Taylor. This was the continuation of the

Worldwide series between the York Foundation and Eaton/Zenk. Very old

school stuff, as Taylor plays the cowardly heel and they take it to the

mat early and often. Hot spot as Eaton slams Taylor on the rampway and

does a splash off the top. Eaton continues the bumps as he does the Bret

Hart bump off the apron into the railing. Looked good. York has switched

to an actual notebook computer here, it should be noted. You know the

difference between the commentary then and today? When Eaton is out of

the ring, Ross notes that he has a 10-count to make it in, and if Taylor

distracts the referee then the count is broken. It’s just the nuances

that improve the commentary for new viewers. Eaton takes another wicked

bump as Taylor delivers a Doctorbomb on the rampway. Eaton takes a

hellacious shitkicking, coming back with a couple of close falls of his

own that get the crowd going. I’m still not sure it was a great idea to

turn Eaton heel at this point, given his popularity. Taylor misses the

pump splash, allowing Eaton to make the super-redneck comeback and hit

the RIGHT HAND OF DOOM! Neckbreaker, Alabama Jam, it’s over. Great

match. **** Eaton was a very underappreciated talent.

– Johnny B. Badd v. Jimmy Garvin. Restructured rant feature (political

correctness and all…): The Johnny B. Badd “Lenny-O-Meter”, measuring

how much of a flaming queer Badd looks like. 10 would be his first

appearance at Superbrawl, 1 would be the final appearance in 1996 before

he was fired. This is at 9, with the Chippendales outfit, Badd Blaster,

and more frills than you can shake a stick at. The Freebirds suck up to

the fans by wearing Atlanta Braves jacket and encouraging the war-cry.

Badd takes a good bump right off by getting hiptossed out of the ring,

over the top rope. I might have to deduct a LoM point for taking it like

a man. The match goes downhill with nothing much going on until Badd

misses an elbow off the top rope and Garvin goes back on offense. Badd

takes a wussy bump over the top rope, negating that point I took off

earlier. Double noggin knocker leads to the double knockout spot. Garvin

hits a vicious DDT, but the referee is distracted with Teddy Long. Badd

hits the TOOTY FRUITY PUNCH OF DEATH! and gets the pin. *

– TV Title match: Stunning Steve Austin v. Dustin Rhodes. Yes, back when

Austin had hair and a hot valet. Two years later, they would battle for

the US title. 7 years later, and Austin would throw Rhodes into “Crapper

3:16″ and go on to win the World title. Life is weird. This is your

typical 1991 Worldwide TV title defense, most of which ended in 10

minute draws. The camera pans into the crowd, showing the world Dusty

Rhodes’ mother for the first time I can remember. I’m scarred for life

now, I swear. They compensate by showing Lady Blossom’s breasts a lot.

Picture Debra MacMichael with even bigger assets, if you’ve never seen

Jeannie before. We go about five minutes before Dustin slices the

requisite artery on the forehead and bleeds all over the place. Dull

action as they build to the time-limit finish. Dustin gets the

near-falls with two minutes left. Austin does a sympathy bladejob.

Dustin with the 10 PUNCHES OF DOOM, the BIONIC ELBOW OF DEATH, and goes

to the top for a bulldog with 3 seconds left, which doesn’t leave enough

time to count a pin. Austin retains. **

– Bill Kazmaier v. Oz. Shoulderblock, shoulderblock, shoulderblock.

Kazmaier wins with a torture rack. -*

– Van Hammer v. Doug Somers. Remember when Hammer was getting pushed?

Squash-a-roo. Van Hammer hasn’t gotten much better since then. Hammer

wins in about a minute with a slingshot suplex. DUD

– WCW Lightheavyweight title: Richard Morton v. Brian Pillman. This

would be the tournament final for the original lightheavy title. Morton

is not cut out for this type of match. Notable Japanese dignitary at

ringside: Wally “Choppy-choppy-your-pee-pee” Yamaguchi. Long boring

match which Pillman wins with a bodypress off the top rope. The most

notable thing about this match was the “refer-eye” camera, mounted on

Nick Patrick’s head. *

– The WCW Halloween Phantom v. Tom Zenk. If you don’t know who the

Phantom is, I won’t spoil it yet. The Phantom makes short work of Zenk,

finishing it with a reverse neckbreaker. The angle would progress later

in the show, so I won’t bother to rate this.

– WCW World tag team title match: Arn Anderson & Larry Zbyszko v. Todd

Champion & Firebreaker Chip. The Patriots were the US tag team champions

at this point. A very dull match and I want to get to the next segment

anyway, so we’ll fast forward to Arn hitting Chip with the spinebuster

to retain the titles. *1/2

– Eric Bischoff brings out recently fired WCW commentator Paul E.

Dangerously. He was dumped for being too controversial, but found a

loophole because he still had his manager’s licence. And if there’s one

thing you don’t want, it’s a pissed off Paul E. And so after more than a

year of being a wimpy announcer, Paul E. brings out the WCW Halloween

Phantom and swears his revenge on the federation that fired him,

beginning with Sting, the franchise of WCW. Is this is a great storyline

or what? To top it off, the Phantom unmasks to reveal…Ravishing Rick

Rude. Big pop for that. The Dangerous Alliance would go on to terrorize

WCW before the angle wrapped up at WrestleWar 92 and they

self-destructed.

– WCW World title match, 2/3 falls: Lex Luger v. Ron Simmons. Luger has

Harley Race with him, while Simmons has Dusty Rhodes. I don’t know who

to pity. Exciting headlock spot to start, Simmons takes control with

several shoulderblocks, and hits a spinebuster for the first fall about

5 minutes in. Rhodes offers some inspirational words during the rest

period. Simmons goes right back to the attack, getting a few two counts.

Luger is either badly injured or playing someone who is, because he

ain’t doing shit. The announcers talk about the Braves, thus reminding

us of the colossal blunder involved in scheduling this show against the

World Series. Luger takes advantage of a Simmons blunder to slowly go on

the offense. Powerslam for two. Luger must have blown up early in the

match because he’s sucking wind so noticeably that Ross points it out. A

very long chinlock results as Luger tries to recouperate. Simmons comes

back with the SHOULDERBLOCKS OF DEATH as the managers fight (I’m

surprised one of them didn’t blade) and Luger charges but gets dumped

over the top rope, thus earning Simmons a DQ and giving Luger the second

fall. Simmons controls the third, doing the Angry Negro (tm Christopher

Priest) House O’ Fire right off the bat and getting a two count off a

clothesline. Superplex for two. Sloppy powerslam. But Simmons misses a

charge and goes into the ringpost, and one piledriver later it’s over.

Thank god. * Luger retains, in what was his only successful title

defense on PPV.

The Bottom Line: The Dangerous Alliance angle started here, but that’s

available on highlight packages the shows following. The Taylor-Eaton

match was great, but they did lots of great matches on Worldwide. The

rest is pretty worthless.

Not really recommended.