On This Day: January 29, 1996 – Monday Nitro: Hogan vs. Flair For An Opener

Monday Nitro #22
Date: January 29, 1996
Location: Canton Civic Center, Canton Ohio
Commentators: Eric Bischoff, Steve McMichael, Bobby Heenan

Time to wrap up January and naturally there’s a huge match on the card. To open the show, Hogan vs. Flair. We’re still leading up to Superbrawl so there’s also Savage vs. Giant. Hopefully there’s nothing like we had last time with the absurdity that was the Hogan stuff. This should be ok though but I don’t see a really good match on the card. Let’s get to it.

Apparently Giant vs. Savage is for the title. They’re really not minding throwing out these title matches are they?

Ric Flair vs. Hulk Hogan

Hogan comes out with a bunch of women including Woman and Liz. Flair comes out with Jimmy Hart. Holy role reversal Batman! Flair tries to overpower Hogan and I think you know how well that goes for him. Chops get him nowhere either. Hogan hammers away and gets the clothesline in the corner and a backdrop to send Flair to the floor. Flair is getting dominated to the shock of no one.

Hart distracts Hulk though and Flair gets a shot to the knee which of course hurts his knee. Well what else is new? We take a break and back with Hogan taking a lot of work on his knee. Naturally he’s just fine and pops up like a penis watching hot porn. Flair Flip and the clothesline puts him down to the floor again. Hogan goes to and gets drilled by Flair. Hart throws in some choking for reasons of being annoying.

A lot more leg work by Flair and there’s the Figure Four. Naturally this isn’t enough as Hogan rolls it over. Mongo wants to know how many people have been able to reverse Flair’s Figure Four. Uh, just about all non-jobbers? It’s Hulk Up time and there’s the usual. Hart distracts the referee though and here’s Arn. Hogan drills him but he slips Flair one of Liz’s stolen shoes. Flair pops him in the eye with it and Flair gets the pin. Naturally it’s not clean though. Heaven forbid the thought.

Rating: D+. They were totally going through the motions here and the match was boring as heck as a result. This went nowhere at all as they were just trying to get to the ending which set up some boring Hogan vs. Horsemen story for awhile. Yes they managed to make that boring. This was long but it was still boring.

Road Warriors vs. Faces of Fear

Bischoff brags about being in the top company in wrestling. Their real hot streak would be coming soon but so would the crash. The Warriors are in blue here. That’s just wrong. The fans chant for the LOD and we’re on after a break. Animal vs. Barbarian here. The Warriors have been back less than a week and they’re already in the title hunt somehow. Go figure.

We’re told by Eric that Flair has defeated Hogan and “become one of the elite in wrestling history.” Yes, in other words his twelve (thirteen depending on the source) world title reigns and countless other title reigns that he’s had over the years, being the top guy in the company for like ever, going to WWF and being the top heel, his Rumble win, all of the countless classics he’s had and all his other accomplishments meant nothing. What made him one of the best (not the best mind you but just one of them) was a cheating win over Hogan on a TV show after 23+ years in the ring. See what I have to listen to?

Meng goes off on Hawk but the no selling begins. Ok not yet. Oh there it is: Hawk does his signature move by taking a Piledriver and being on his feet first. I never got how that worked. The Faces of Fear run to the floor as the Warriors stand tall. Bischoff says this is all new talent. Riiiiiiiiight. He does list off some of the young guys that are here which is true. They are brand new here after they were all in ECW first.

Mongo gets us back into the match by talking about Animal having a bad back and Barbarian working on it. It says a lot when Steve McMichael has to bring us back to reality. There’s a chinlock by Meng for a little bit which gets us nowhere. This has been more or less pure dominance by the Fear dudes for the last five minutes or so. Nice way to make the Warriors look awesome.

Barbarian goes up for a BAD looking shoulder block which Animal falls forward from for no apparent reason. They try the spot again and Animal gets a clothesline this time. Oh well either way it gets Hawk in and one step closer to ending this. Hawk comes in and beats on both guys but gets caught on the top in almost a suplex. Animal picks Barbarian off to set for the Doomsday Device but it gets broken up. A top rope clothesline ends Barbarian shortly thereafter.

Rating: D. This was supposed to be their big return? Who thought the Road Warriors having nearly ten minutes was a good idea, especially against the Faces of Fear? This was sloppy and we don’t even get to see their big finishing move? This did not work in the slightest at all.

Gene is with Kevin Sullivan and Hugh Morrus. Kevin is mad about Anderson and in turn the Horsemen not letting Giant go in after Hogan last week. Anderson and Pillman come out and Sullivan says keep Pillman under control or face the consequences. Anderson yells at Pillman about his immaturity and how he wasn’t there when Flair beat Hogan earlier.

While Anderson is yelling at him and threatening him with tough love (cue ominous music!), Sullivan and Morrus beat down the Horsemen. Sullivan whips Pillman with a belt but Anderson gets a DDT on Morrus and Sullivan runs. This would lead to Sullivan vs. Pillman at the PPV in one of the weirdest moments in wrestling history as Pillman and Sullivan had a match set up where Pillman pretended to quit the company. WCW being WCW, they bought it and actually released him and he ran off to ECW and ultimately WWF. It was insane to put it mildly.

Sherri is here and we get a clip of Madusa breaking up her wedding to Colonel Parker. As we come back to the arena, Madusa dives off the top with a cross body and apparently it’s match time!

Madusa vs. Sister Sherri

Madusa kills her to start. Sherri has a surprisingly nice figure. Eric talks about Madusa throwing the WWF Women’s Title in the trash which I think she regrets now. After a quick beating Sherri gets a shot in and goes up, but Madusa slams her off the top. In an ending I haven’t seen before that I remember, Sherri holds on and rolls through into a small package for the pin. Madusa kills her afterwards. No rating as this wasn’t even two minutes long.

WCW World Title: Randy Savage vs. The Giant

Savage comes out with all the women again. Wow what a man whore. And there’s no Savage. He jumps Giant from behind and kicks the referee out. He jumps on Giant’s back with a sleeper because that works so well for everyone else and it’s thrown out in less than 50 seconds. Flair is at ringside too.

Flair annihilates Savage at ringside and Giant grabs him too. The fans cheer for Flair which I assure you isn’t real. The fans are just confused. They want Hogan! Chokeslam kills Savage dead. Oh of course Hogan runs down with his eye taped up and a chair in hand to take Giant out. Yes, Hogan saves Savage again because Savage can’t do a thing by himself.

The Dungeon comes out and Hogan kills all of them with the chair too. Flair storms the broadcast position and yells at Bischoff. WOO to McMichael too. Giant does the same and says he’s going to eat his body heart and soul or something like that. Bischoff walks off. Take a guess which of the two matches wound up going on last at the PPV. Flair declares himself the host of the show. Heenan praises them as only he can do to end the show. Oh and Flair is a 12 time champion at this point.

Overall Rating: D-. So let’s see. There are two matches that got any time and they both sucked. This was Hogan saving the day again and was once again the star of the show. It’s more or less a big commercial for SuperBrawl which wound up sucking hard. This was a bad show and one of the weakest they’ve had in their entire run so far. Bad show indeed.

 

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