Welcome to my first-ever DVD review here on Bleacher Report. Today, I will be reviewing Disc 2 of The Very Best of WCW Monday Nitro Vol. 2. I will be providing a brief analysis on every match or segment and then rate them on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being not good at all and 10 being excellent. Enjoy.
DDP again welcomes us, this time into Disc 2. We flash back into 1997 where WCW was blowing roofs off and apparently selling out 20,000 seats in a matter of minutes. DDP says that fans were engaged like never before and that Nitro captured everyone's imagination... including Hollywood celebrities.
They wanted to witness it live and, in some instances, they wanted to be a part of it. DDP goes into his alliance with Karl Malone and how their nemesis at the time, "The Worm" Dennis Rodman, skipped practice to appear on Nitro.
"That's why you should tune into Nitro, baby. You don't know who's going to show up or what's gonna happen." - Mongo McMichael
HOLLYWOOD HOGAN & DENNIS RODMAN CALL OUT LEX LUGER & THE GIANT
June 16, 1997
Hulk Hogan makes his way out to the ring with Dennis Rodman, playing the cool heels. Big mistake, in my opinion.
In the ring, Hogan says that Lex Luger and The Giant can talk the talk, but they can't walk the walk. Rodman grabs the mic next and says that he's ready and it's time to get it on. As the nWo call out Luger and Giant, we have to take a commercial break.
Back from the break, Hogan and Rodman are still in the ring, but they want to get out of here. As they're leaving, Luger's music cuts them off. Luger and The Giant storm the ring, but Lex gets taken out by Hogan quickly.
The Giant gets his hands on Rodman and goes for a chokeslam, but Hogan stops him. The Giant no-sells Hogan's blow and goes for the chokeslam on "The Hulkster," but Rodman lays him out from behind with Hogan's WCW Title belt. The fans begin to litter the ring as Hogan also takes out Luger with his title belt.
Syxx, The Outsiders and Macho Man Randy Savage enter the ring and spray paint the nWo letters on the faces' backs to end the segment.
Not a mindblowing segment, but it wasn't bad. It was a good example of a celebrity POSITIVELY being involved in wrestling, as opposed to the Raw guest host era. Also, it's a good thing that this was the only celebrity segment of this DVD (at least so far), since the latest nWo DVD got into it quite a bit.
PROMO RATING: 4/10*
REY MYSTERIO, JR. VS. KEVIN NASH
June 30, 1997
Before the match gets underway, we go all the way back to July 1996, when Kevin Nash tossed Rey Mysterio, Jr. like a dart onto a trailer. We also flash back to April 21, when Nash attacked Mysterio from behind and laid him out with the Jackknife Powerbomb.
The commentators show concern for Rey as he makes his entrance, but Mysterio shows no trepidation. He charges the ring and immediately goes up to the top rope. Missile dropkick on Nash by Mysterio. More dropkicks by Mysterio and Nash is finally off his feet after a springboard somersault kick from "The Human Highlight Reel."
Mysterio goes for his first and only cover of the match, but Nash of course powers out. The match quickly turns into a squash match with big stars and Nash hits the Jackknife for the pinfall victory.
Post-match, Nash hits another Jackknife on Mysterio and lays out the ref. Konnan makes his way out to the entrance ramp and Nash hits Rey with a third Jackknife Powerbomb. Konnan finally enters the ring and nods at Nash.
Although the commentators thought that Konnan was there to help Rey, he yanks on the leg of Mysterio with a brief submission hold and then leaves the ring with Mysterio wincing in pain.
This was a squash match, but at least it was entertaining, so this is why it gets this rating.
LA PARKA VS. RANDY SAVAGE
July 7, 1997
Previous to the bell ringing, we take a look at La Parka's recent obsession with chairs. Macho Man makes his way out to the ring with Scott Hall and Miss Elizabeth.
Savage completely dominates La Parka early on. Parka almost scores the upset with a small package, but Macho kicks out and takes him down with a clothesline. Scoop slam by Savage and he is primed for that signature top-rope elbow.
Macho Man goes for it, but La Parka gets his feet up and hits Savage with a Diamond Cutter out of nowhere.
La Parka unmasks and it's DDP! Cover and that's all she wrote. DDP leaves through the crowd afterward.
This wasn't a bad match by any means, but it surely can't be the best that WCW Nitro had to offer. I was expecting more coming into the match and I have to say that I was somewhat let down. If you're planning on getting the DVD or haven't watched it yet, I don't recommend watching this.
GOLDBERG VS. HUGH MORRUS
June 30, 1997
Hugh Morrus, also known as Bill DeMott, makes his entrance with some guy called Bill Goldberg already in the ring. I'm sure nothing big ever came out of that jobber. Goldberg is making his debut here.
Goldberg overpowers Hugh Morrus early on, but Morrus comes back. Morrus hits his No Laughing Matter, but Goldberg kicks out at two. Goldberg makes a comeback moments later, hits a powerslam on Morrus and ends things with the Jackhammer.
After the bout, Goldberg turns to the camera, says "That's one!" and blows off an interview with Mean Gene.
This was an entertaining squash match. It also wasn't pointless since it featured the debut of Bill Goldberg, who would later become one of WCW's main stars.
BOOKER T VS. JEFF JARRETT
October 6, 1997
This is billed as a "Homegrown" match on the DVD listing. Jarrett is initially in control of Booker, who is just beginning his singles run here, but Booker comes back and goes to town on Double J after he pauses to pose cockily in the corner.
Jarrett regains control quickly after slamming Booker's leg against the apron, but unfortunately, that leg does not come into play later on in the match, therefore making this spot useless.
With Jarrett having the upper hand, there's a cool spot with Booker missing an elbow, popping right back up with a spin-a-roonie and then decking Jarrett with a Harlem Sidekick.
Back from the break, Jarrett almost scores the pinfall off a top-rope crossbody. The next convincing two-count comes when Booker hits the scissors kick on Jarrett, but Jarrett gets his foot on the bottom rope before the referee can count to three.
Mongo McMichael makes his way to ringside during the closing moments of the match. He's involved in a troubled relationship storyline with Debra. Jarrett confronts McMichael, but he gets clocked right in front of the ref.
Somehow, this doesn't cause a disqualification and Booker rolls Jarrett up with an O'Connor Roll to score the three-count.
Good match here, better than most on the DVD so far, but it was somewhat hurt by Jarrett's selling. I do not think that he was no-selling on purpose, but it made Booker's moves look less impactful and therefore decreased the quality of the match.
THE STEINER BROTHERS VS. PUBLIC ENEMY (WORLD TAG TEAM TITLE MATCH)
November 3, 1997
Heading into this match, I suppose you should know that Public Enemy lost a normal tag team match to the Steiners the previous week. However, this is a street fight and it is for the WCW World Tag Team Championships. Of course, Rocco Rock and Johnny Grunge make up Public Enemy while Scott and Rick make up The Steiner Brothers.
The Steiners are led out to the ring by Ted DiBiase and go right after Public Enemy, getting the upper hand at first. The crowd is dead as all four men brawl, but there's cool spot with Rick Steiner catching Grunge mid-air and dropping him with a belly to belly that gets some "oooh!"s from the fans in attendance.
We go to a split screen, making things even harder to follow, but it's an all-out brawl as far as I can tell. All four men are going at it on the outside now with Rocco Rock fighting Scott Steiner and Johnny Grunge brawling with Rick.
Somehow, Rick Steiner ends up on a table with another one on top of him. Johnny Grunge goes to splash him through the two tables, but Ted DiBiase kind of pulls Steiner out of the way in what looked like a botched spot. Scott comes in, covers Grunge and ends the misery.
Awful match. It was supposed to be an all-out brawl, but nothing happened. There weren't any decent spots nor redeeming qualities. Worst match of the DVD so far.
nWo SINGS O CANADA
November 10, 1997
The nWo make their way out to the ring with a ton of Canadian flags. Eric Bischoff is the first one on the stick and he states that they have two special announcements tonight. First, he introduces "the man that is to wrestling what Elvis Presley is to music," "the real giant" Kevin Nash.
Nash comes out and the crowd goes mild. He's the next one with the microphone and he cuts a brief promo on The Giant and World War III. The next announcement is that the nWo has a special gift for their newest member, Bret "Hit Man" Hart. They proceed to sing O Canada and that's all.
Pointless segment. How was this one of the best Nitro segments ever? The promos were delivered well, but had no substance or meaning behind them.
PROMO RATING: 3/10*
BOOKER T VS. RANDY SAVAGE
Dec. 15, 1997
I have high expectations coming into this match. Booker is the face and Macho Man is the heel here.
After Savage takes forever to come out, there's some nice chain wrestling early on. It's a fairly balanced match. There's a repeat of the elbow drop/spin-a-roonie/Harlem Sidekick spot, but it doesn't get old. Savage bails out of the ring to take a breather, but Booker goes right after him.
Booker misses a splash onto the barricade and Macho Man smashes him with a chair. There was no mention of this being a street fight, so I don't know why the ref let this slide, but it's not like he's counting them out either.
Back in the ring, a fan attempts to invade the squared circle but gets his ass beat by security. After a few minutes of Savage in complete control, Booker is able to make a comeback and take him down with a big kick to the mush. Running calf kick by Booker, but there's a ref bump with Macho Man landing on top of the ref.
Booker hits the Scissors Kick and goes to the top rope for the Harlem Hangover, but Miss Elizabeth hangs onto Booker's foot, allowing Macho Man to recover. Savage with another chair shot and then the top-rope elbow. Elizabeth revives the ref and Savage gets the dirty victory.
Very good match, one of the best so far. It exceeded my expectations and I am going to see if there are any other Macho Man vs. Booker T matches now. The dirty finish was somewhat underwhelming, but it was to be expected with the nWo running wild on Nitro.
There's a segment with DDP remembering Randy Savage and how he left him a message on Thanksgiving thanking him. DDP then does a great Macho Man impression about how he was thankful for the message and then talks about how much of his success should be attributed to the Macho Man. A great, emotional segment.
PSICOSIS, SILVER KING AND LA PARKA VS. JUVENTUD GUERRERA, HECTOR GARZA AND REY MYSTERIO JR.
Dec. 22, 1997
This match will be contested under "luchador rules," which means that if your partner goes out to the floor, you can replace him without making a tag.
Hector Garza and Silver King kick things off with some great athleticism. On a sidenote, Silver King reminds me of El Local. He's pudgy, but still athletic and quick.
Juvi and Psicosis are the next two men in with Psicosis establishing control quickly. There's a spot where Juvi went for a springboard reverse Frankensteiner or Psicosis was supposed to catch him with an electric chair drop, but it was botched and Juvi nearly broke his neck. Luckily, he was okay.
Juventud Guerrera ends up suckering Psicosis in and he runs shoulder-first into the ring post. Tags to La Parka and Rey Mysterio Jr. Mysterio is on fire early on, but La Parka cuts his momentum off with a free fall drop. All hell breaks loose and La Parka puts Juvi on a chair and hits a suicide dive, continuing his "chairman of WCW" gimmick.
A top-rope corkscrew by Hector Garza takes everyone out, leaving Silver King and Mysterio as the legal men inside the ring. Remember that you can replace your partner if he's on the outside. Mysterio with a reverse Frankensteiner off the top rope, the West Coast Pop and that seals the deal for Rey-Rey.
Very good match. It wasn't completely a spotfest, but had its share of memorable athleticism. The West Coast Pop still manages to impress me, even though I've seen it a thousand times. I recommend going back and watching this.
DDP VS. CHRIS JERICHO (WCW UNITED STATES HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE MATCH)
Jan. 5, 1998
I was wondering where Jericho had been this entire DVD. Here he is. The future Y2J comes out with a steel chair and a jacket in hand as we are taken back to last week where Jericho threw a tantrum by smashing a steel chair against the ringpost repeatedly.
Back in the ring. Jericho wants a microphone and gets it. Jericho wants a microphone and gets it. He apologizes for his actions last week and says that those weren't the actions of the real Chris Jericho.
The real Chris Jericho is the one talking right now and the real Chris Jericho is the one idolized by millions across the globe. He says that he reacted in the heat of the moment and that he's sorry.
He presents Dave Penzer with a new chair to sit in and a new tuxedo. Jericho promises that it will never happen again.
After less than five minutes of wrestling, DDP blocks a kick from Jericho and hits the Diamond Cutter for the pinfall victory. After the match, Jericho shouts that this is a conspiracy and he flips out again.
Not a good match at all. They got off to a good start, but it ended abruptly and the live crowd noticed that. Jericho's pre-match promo was better than the actual bout.
Back in the studio, DDP calls Jericho a class act and takes us into a video package about the annual Nitro spring break parties.
HOLLYWOOD HOGAN AND THE OUTSIDERS VS. STING, RANDY SAVAGE AND THE GIANT
Jan. 5, 1998
The commentators remind us that The Giant is sporting a neckbrace since he does not have the clearance to wrestle thanks to Kevin Nash. Eric Bischoff is in the nWo's corner.
Everyone goes right after each other right from the get-go with Sting ending up alone in the ring with Hollywood Hogan. Hogan tries to beg off, but Sting is having none of it and he hits the 10 mounted punches in the corner followed by a big wind-up punch.
"The Hulkster" pokes Sting in the eye to try to gain the advantage, but it proves to not be effective as Sting makes the tag to The Giant moments later.
Nash is also tagged in, with Hogan wanting none of The Giant. The nWo tries to enter the ring to have the numbers advantage vs. The Giant, but he picks up both Hall and Hogan. Nash decks The Giant from behind and begins mounting some offense after targeting The Giant's wounded neck.
Hogan pokes Sting in the eye to gain the advantage for the heel team. Tag to The Giant. Hogan backs off and tags in Nash. The nWo enters the ring and The Giant picks them both up, but Nash decks him from behind and works on the back of The Giant's injured neck.
With Sting and Macho Man itching to get in the bout, the nWo exchanges quick tags in an attempt to keep The Giant grounded, but it is not for long. The Giant pushes everyone away and makes the tag to Macho Man. Savage comes in like a house of fire as Nash runs away from The Giant to the back.
Hall tries to interfere, but Sting stops him with a bulldog and then Stinger Splashes in the corner. Eric Bischoff tries to get involved, but he gets knocked off the apron by Savage. Out of nowhere comes Brutus Beefcake/The Disciple (whose identity was unknown at the time) and he lays Macho Man out with a kneeling Stunner.
Hogan crawls into the cover. 1... 2... and 3.
A decent six-man tag. Not spectacular action, but it was solid. The ending was not a complete surprise to me, but it continues with the disappointing nWo dirty wins in this DVD.
STING VS. DDP (WCW WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE MATCH)
Jan. 5, 1998
Both men are top faces here. DDP is the current WCW US Heavyweight Champion, but the title is not on the line. Sting's WCW World Heavyweight Championship is, however.
Both men go right after each other with a collar-and-elbow tie-up and fall out of the ring still in the lock-up. Another lock-up and it is Sting who gains the advantage at first. Sting goes for the first pinfall of the match wtih a roll-up for a two count. Sting attempts the Scorpion Death Lock, but DDP makes it to the ropes.
After a big swinging neckbeaker, DDP goes for the Diamond Cutter, but Sting pushes DDP away. Another nearfall comes when DDP throws Sting a curve and delivers a Diamond Dallas Pancake for a nearall. A few minutes later, Sting regains control by countering DDP's 10 mounted punches in the corner into a flapjack on the top turnbuckle.
The match slows down thanks to a reverse chinlock courtesy of Sting and DDP is fading. DDP eventually makes it back to a vertical base and makes a comeback with a belly-to-belly for a nearfall. Both men trade blows, but Sting eventually gets the upper hand.
Sting with three big bulldogs and he then climbs to the top rope. Sting goes for a top-rope splash, but Dallas gets his knees up.
DDP tries for the Diamond Cutter, but Sting puts the brakes on and counters into the Scorpion Death Drop for a great finish. Both men hug post-match.
RAVEN VS. GOLDBERG (WCW UNITED STATES HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE MATCH)
April 20, 1998
Raven is the champion heading into this match. Goldberg isn't a champion, but he is undefeated at 74-0 and is already receiving huge crowd reactions. This match is contested under Raven's Rules, which is a fancy term for a street fight.
Raven goes right after Goldberg, taking him down with a dropkick. The hardcore specialist takes it to the outside and tries to Irish-whip Goldberg, but Goldberg counters and throws Raven into the guard rail in a nasty looking bump.
Back inside the ring, Goldberg locks in a leg lock, but Raven makes it to the ropes. I guess there are rope breaks in a Raven's Rules match. A savate kick by Goldberg catches Raven in the face and he rolls out to the outside.
Goldberg follows suit, but Raven grabs a chair, hits Goldberg in the back and gut with it and throws the master of the Jackhammer back inside the ring.
Goldberg kicks out at two of a drop toehold onto the steel chair and Raven locks in a rest-hold. Goldberg makes a comeback, no-selling everything Raven throws at him and hits the Spear on Raven.
Members of The Flock enter the ring, but Goldberg is impervious to pain at this point. He hits a spear on Billy Kidman and then Jackhammers the biggest man of the Flock.
Raven tries to escape through the crowd, but the fans throw him back into the ring. A second spear by Goldberg and then the Jackhammer. Bill Goldberg is the new US Champion and is now undefeated with a 75-0 streak.
An entertaining prolonged squash match. I'm a big fan of Raven and I enjoy Goldberg's destruction inside the squared circle, so this was fun to watch.
Unlike some of the previous matches, even though this was a squash match, it was one of the best moments of Nitro with Goldberg winning his first singles championship and extending his undefeated streak.
BIRTH OF THE WOLFPAC
May 4, 1998
During a match between (Billy) Kidman and Scott Putski, Kevin Nash, Macho Man Randy Savage and Konnan make their way out to the ring through the crowd. When they get into the ring, Nash basically murders Putski with a Jackknife and Konnan and Savage get rid of Kidman.
After grabbing a mic, Nash says that Wolfpac is running the show now and gives a shoutout to Scott Hall, who is not able to be there since Hollywood Hogan and Eric Bischoff decided he was "too dangerous for live TV."
Nash claims the Wolfpac is hungry and that Hogan can get his crew and he can get his crew and they can fight it out.
Macho Man grabs the mic says that they're going to get down the way they know how to. Macho says that the one thing he'd like better than taking Hollywood Hogan by his neck and popping his bald head to the sky is getting rid of Bret Hart.
"Big Sexy" then introduces the new member of the Wolfpac, Curt Hennig. Brian Adams tries to stop Hennig, but Konnan challenges Adams to a match instead. Nash then challenges Sting to end the segment.
PROMO RATING: 5.5/10*
A decent promo by Nash, but I did not really enjoy the whole nWo Wolfpac/nWo Hollywood aspect, so I was not a huge fan of this promo. Again, a lackluster way to end another disc.
So far, the DVD has had a few good matches, but no hidden gems or must-watch parts, which has been disappointing.
Stay tuned to Bleacher Report in the following days for a review of Disc 3 and Blu-Ray extras.
You can follow Brett Chandler on Twitter @AmericanDolphin.