[TV Rundown] ‘World Championship Wrestling’ 4.13.91 – Pillman vs. Flair, Rhodes vs. Zbyszko

COMMENTATORS: Jim Ross & Paul E. Dangerously

Brian Pillman continues his crusade against The Horsemen this week on World Championship Wrestling, taking on its leader “Nature Boy” Ric Flair. Also on the show Dustin Rhodes takes on Larry Zbyszko, Gordon Solie announces some SuperBrawl matches, and much more!

CHAMPIONS

  • WCW WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION: “The Nature Boy” Ric Flair (?)
  • WCW UNITED STATES HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION: “The Total Package” Lex Luger
  • WCW WORLD TELEVISION CHAMPION: “The Enforcer” Arn Anderson
  • WCW WORLD TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS: The Steiner Brothers (Rick & Scott Steiner)
  • WCW UNITED STATES TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS: Vacant
  • WCW WORLD SIX MAN TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS: Ricky Morton, “Wildfire” Tommy Rich, & The Junkyard Dog

LINEUP

  • The Steiner Brothers vs. Don Allen & Lou Fabiano
  • The One Man Gang vs. Rick Hardrock
  • Big Van Vader vs. Mark Kyle
  • RINGSIDE INTERVIEW: Missy Hyatt w/ Big Van Vader
  • Bobby Eaton vs. Pat Rose
  • SUPERBRAWL CONTROL CENTER w/ Gordon Solie
  • The Fabulous Freebirds vs. Dave Johnson & Terry Bronson
  • Terrance Taylor vs. Tim Parker
  • Dustin Rhodes vs. Larry Zbyszko (**1/4)
  • FEUD RECAP: Lex Luger vs. Nikita Koloff
  • THE DANGER ZONE: Paul E. Dangerously w/ Arn Anderson
  • Barry Windham vs. Tommy Angel
  • Brian Pillman vs. Ric Flair (***1/2)

*****

-LAST WEEK: Pull apart brawl between Lex Luger and Nikita Koloff. Koloff clocks Luger with the United States Heavyweight Championship.

-Ross, Dangerously, & Missy Hyatt welcome the home audience at ringside. Highlight match features Brian Pillman taking on Ric Flair. That should be good. Dangerously will be interviewing Arn Anderson, Hyatt brags that she’ll be interviewing Big Van Vader.


The Steiner Brothers (Rick & Scott Steiner) defeated Don Allen & Lou Fabiano when Scott Steiner pinned Allen following a Frankensteiner (4:30)

  • INSERT PROMO: The Steiners like beating people up, that’s all that matters to them. Scott Steiner calls the IWGP Tag Team Championship the “Japanese” tag team championship. Their opponents for SuperBrawl will be announced next week.
  • Fun jobber squash from The Steiners, with Steinerlines coming from both the basement position and off the apron.

The One Man Gang [w/ Kevin Sullivan & Teddy Long] defeated Rick Hardrock via pinfall with the 747 Splash (3:43)

  • INSERT PROMO: Ron Simmons is putting an end to everyone at the Omni tomorrow night when he faces Butch Reed in a Georgia Street Fight with lumberjacks.
  • POST MATCH: Gang continues attacking Hardrock until Sullivan pries him off with Teddy Long’s belt.

Big Van Vader defeated Mark Kyle via pinfall with a powerslam (2:03)

  • This is Vader’s first appearance on WCW TV this year.
  • Vader is taking on The State Patrol in a handicap match at the Omni. Ugh that’s so cool. Somebody send me that fan-cam.
  • Lots of hype for his “inevitable” rematch with Stan Hansen. Heartbreaking.

-Hyatt joins Vader at ringside for a post-match interview after the commercial break. Vader rips the mic out of her hand and brags about his 7 World Titles on 3 continents and now America is going to feel his power. Vader tells Stan Hansen to come get him and the war has just begun. He fears no man and feels no pain.


“Beautiful” Bobby Eaton defeated Pat Rose via pinfall with the Alabama Jam (7:16)

  • Eaton high fives Rose, then attacks him from behind. Babyface?
  • Eaton taking on Terrance Taylor at the Omni tomorrow night, FINALLY A FRESH MATCHUP.
  • Both men are cheating, Rose even gets some offense, but Eaton is beautiful for a reason. Wait that has nothing to do with wrestling talent.
  • Lots of stalling from Pat Rose on the floor, making this one last way longer than it should.

-SUPERBRAWL CONTROL CENTER: Gordon Solie announces that SuperBrawl is going to the biggest PPV in WCW history, live from the Bayfront Center in St. Petersburg, Florida. The Young Pistols will take on The Fabulous Freebirds for the vacant U.S. Tag Team Championship. Young Pistols and Big Daddy Dink say some pre-recorded stuff we’ve already heard this weekend. Other matches include Arn Anderson defending the TV Title against Bobby Eaton, Ricky Morton vs. Dan Spivey, and Big Josh vs. Larry Zbyszko. Solie will be back with more news next week. Bold of WCW to announce matches a month ahead of time.

Diamond Dallas Page and his latest Diamond Doll is introduced to the ring. The Doll is VERY into it. DDP introduces his charges The Fabulous Freebirds & Big Daddy Dink for the next match before leaving with his lady to probably do sex stuff like hugging and holding hands.


The Fabulous Freebirds (Michael “P.S.” Hayes & Jimmy “Jam” Garvin) [w/ Big Daddy Dink] defeated Dave Johnson & Terry Bronson when Garvin pinned Johnson with the DDT (3:16)

  • Hayes underestimates Bronson and eats a hip toss and armdrag for his troubles. I THINK HE’S GONNA-nah, Freebirds regain the advantage super easily.
  • Johnson tags in, gets some licks in, and immediately falls victim to the DDT when he tries a backdrop. Poor scouting on his part.
  • POST MATCH: Garvin throws Bronson into a clothesline from Dink at ringside.

“The Computerized Man of the 1990s” Terrance Taylor [w/ Alexandra York & Mr. Hughes] defeated Tim “Powerhouse” Parker via pinfall with the Five Arm (5:43)

  • Rhubarb Jones and his dumb ass calls Taylor “the Computer Wrestler of the 1990s” HOW DARE HE.
  • INSERT PROMO: Alexandra York says she’s watching both Larry Zbyszko and Dustin Rhodes very closely…who will be fighting each other later in the show.
  • If The York Foundation offered health insurance, her stable would have been a lot more star-studded.
  • Parker gets a chance to shine against Taylor, flummoxing the COM-PEW-TOR man for a moment before things go the way you expect. At least it keeps things somewhat competitive. WCW seemed to like Tim Parker, I wonder why he never got to do more.

“The Natural” Dustin Rhodes vs. “The Living Legend” Larry Zbyszko

This is a real match, so FORMAT SWITCH MID-RUNDOWN. Gotta love it. Alexandra York shows up ringside to scout with her COM-PEW-TOR and her bodyguard Mr. Hughes. Rhodes has already said no to joining the Foundation but York is nothing if not persistent (and his future wife). Rhodes and Zbyszko criss cross the ropes, Zbyszko with a drop toehold and Rhodes responds with an armdrag, frustrating the Living Legend. Zbyszko connects with a spin kick, sending Rhodes to the floor. Zbyszko brings him back in, Rhodes counters a corner whip and applies a sleeperhold. Zbyszko breaks it and turns Rhodes inside out with a clothesline for a two-count. Rhodes counters Zbyszko with a vertical suplex, Zbyszko dodges an elbowdrop and covers for a two-count. Chinlock time. Rhodes tries to escape, Zbyszko rakes the eyes and rolls him up with an inside cradle for the 1…2…Rhodes kicks out. Zbyszko dodges a dropkick and covers but once again The Natural kicks out.

Another chinlock as Center Stage chants “GO DUSTIN GO”. Rhodes counters a backdrop with a kick to the face, following up with a powerslam for the 1…2…Zbyszko kicks out. Zbyszko with an abdominal stretch in the center of the ring, pulling the tights behind the ref’s back before getting bored and clubbing him with a forearm. Rhodes counters a piledriver with a backdrop and connects with a series of rights when his suplex attempt is blocked. Rhodes brings Zbyszko to the mat into a lateral press for a two-count. Zbyszko counters a side headlock with a belly-to-back suplex for the 1…2…Rhodes kicks out. Rhodes connects with a dropkick followed by a running lariat. Rhodes goes for the Bulldog but Terrance Taylor trips him at ringside. Zbyszko tries to go for the pin, Rhodes counters into an inside cradle for the 1…2…3!

Dustin Rhodes defeated Larry Zbyszko via pinfall (9:07)

  • Decent match if you can handle Zbyszko’s stalling. This time around I could so I enjoyed it overall, especially Rhodes getting the win despite Taylor getting involved. Dude can’t even help people win matches, what a GOOBER. (**1/4)

Taylor and Zbyszko attack Rhodes, Ricky Morton runs in to help. Taylor and Zbyszko beat him down, Rhodes runs back in to help Morton, then in comes Mr. Hughes. Hughes teases getting physically involved but is talked down by Alexandra York. Bet JYD wishes Morton helped him last week during the Gang’s attack. They’re only partners and champions though.


– FEUD RECAP: Jim Ross introduces various beats of the Lex Luger/Nikita Koloff feud (the WrestleWar attack, last week’s pull apart brawl, etc). Ross then takes us to the closing moments of their match at the Meadowlands back on April 4th, which ended in a DQ when Koloff tried to use his chain. Luger grabs the chain in the post-match brawl and wraps it around his arm for a clothesline. Ref tries to interject, Luger knocks him down too. Crowd loves it though, don’t worry. Y’all don’t wanna do this on PPV? ☹ Camera follows Luger backstage and Koloff attacks, leading to another pull apart brawl. Back to Jim Ross who hypes a Luger/Koloff rematch while showing off the dented US Title belt (apparently dented when Koloff hit him with it last week).

-THE DANGER ZONE: Paul E. Dangerously is at ringside with his guest “The Enforcer” Arn Anderson who has remembered he is the Television Champion. Dangerously asks Anderson what is going on with the Four Horsemen; Anderson says it’s while a lot came to him as a Horsemen, a lot passed him by too. Anderson turns his attention to his SuperBrawl opponent Bobby Eaton, saying Eaton will be facing HIM and not the HORSEMEN. I like Anderson’s desire to prove that he can do things on his own. Will it turn out to be hubris? We’ll find out in a month!


Barry Windham defeated Tommy Angel via pinfall with the superplex (3:25)

  • Dangerously brags his interview was more in-depth than Dusty Rhodes’ attempt, even though Windham and Anderson essentially said the same thing.
  • Windham’s hair is getting longer, thankfully. Growing out that boy cut.
  • MOVE OF THE MATCH: Windham escapes a headscissors and just decks Angel right in the jaw. Awesome.
  • Dangerously does a good job explaining why Windham’s take on traditional offense (DDT, lariat) is so vastly different. I appreciate that.

-SUPERBRAWL AD: No jammin’, just slammin’. Goofy neon and wrestlers breaking musical equipment. Maybe I do miss the 90s.


“Flyin” Brian Pillman vs. “The Nature Boy” Ric Flair

Pillman drops Flair with a shoulderblock and immediately belts him with repeated rights. Flair chops Pillman, Pillman chops back, and the champ bails to the corner. Flair backs Pillman into the corner for a chop, Pillman with a series of chops of his own and a backdrop that sends Flair rolling to the floor. Pillman immediately follows him out and they exchange chops. Flair grabs a chair, but the ref intervenes to reset everything and prevent the carnage. Flair with a corner chop and a series of forearms. Pillman once again hits chops of his own and Flair does the flop. Flair drops Pillman with a shoulderblock, Pillman takes him to the mat with a drop toehold and rams it against the steel post. Pillman settles into a half-crab, Flair overacting like only he can. What a f*cking pro. Flair breaks it by rolling under the bottom rope. Pillman suplexes Flair back into the ring, Flair immediately begs off to the corner. Pillman tries some count-a-long rights, Flair counters with an inverted atomic drop to finally stop the onslaught. Flair goes to work, dropping a pair of knees right across the face. Flair covers with his feet on his ropes but Pillman manages to kick out.

Pillman blocks an inverted atomic and drops Flair, covering for the 1…2…champ kicks out and begs off. Flair goads Pillman in and rolls him up, feet on the ropes but Pillman keeps getting his shoulder up. Fans try to tell the ref what’s happening, Flair yells at them to shut up. Pillman with a waistlock, Flair with a low-blow that the ref doesn’t see. Flair drops Pillman with a chop and connects with an elbowdrop for the 1…2…Pillman kicks out. Flair once again tries to use the ropes to get the pin but Pillman won’t stay down. Flair to the top, Pillman slams him off but misses a missile dropkick and HUMPS THE MAT in pain. Flair follows up with a vertical suplex and covers for the 1…2…Pillman kicks out and the champ slaps him repeatedly out of frustration. Pillman fights back, chopping Flair so hard he does another Flop, and mounts a comeback. Pillman sends Flair into the corner, Flair flips over the buckles and to the floor. Pillman meets him there and gets dropped by Flair and rolled back into the ring. More chop exchanges. Pillman goes for the dropkick, Flair ducks, and referee Randy Anderson eats it instead! Flair tosses Pillman out, Pillman skins the cat and hits Air Pillman for the visual pin but there’s no ref to make the actual count. Out comes Arn Anderson, Pillman drops him with a right but gets his knee clipped by Flair. Flair locks in the Figure Four, Anderson pulling his arms for extra leverage. Ref wakes up, Pillman almost passes out and gets pinned but gets his shoulder up. Out comes El Gigante, who hits Anderson and applies the Claw on Flair, causing a DQ.

Ric Flair defeated Brian Pillman via DQ (13:15)

  • Flair and Pillman were initially scheduled to meet at Dixie Dynamite back in January and having now seen the weekly TV version of this matchup I’m even more bummed we missed out. This was a great hard-hitting contest that made Pillman look like a million bucks, even getting the visual pin on the champion. Flair rocked too, selling beautifully and also antagonizing the crowd as only The Nature Boy can. I am a little bummed that this wasn’t set up to conclude Pillman’s quest, facing the leader of the Horsemen feels like the natural endpoint, but with Anderson getting involved it gives their Main Event match tomorrow some extra oomph. Also way to ruin a good thing, El Gigante. You nerd. (***1/2)

All four men brawl till they don’t and we go to commercial…and the episode footage I’m watching ends. I assume Flair won by DQ. It makes the most sense.

*****

FINAL THOUGHTS: Helluva main event to a good episode of World Championship Wrestling. No complaints here, also not much to say. Pillman/Flair kicked ass, go watch that.

 

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