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WCW presented “Uncensored” - their unauthorised, unsanctioned event in March 1995. The concept basically meant that WCW were going to present (almost) anything under the remit that they would not be responsible for what happened in the ring, or, in the case of one match, in the back of a moving truck. Along with the King of the Road spectacle, we would have a martial arts match, a strap match, a tornado falls count anywhere tag match and a “Boxer vs Wrestler” match.
Feud wise, this was the rematch between Vader and Hogan from Superbrawl. Hogan was promising “the ultimate surprise” before the PPV, Vader and Flair were causing all kinds of havoc in Hogan's absence on WCW TV. Flair's demeanour had changed since his return, he was a lot less composed and much more voliatile in the hunt of both Hogan but also WCW Commissioner Nick Bockwinkel.
On the Main Event TV show before the PPV, Hogan unveils his “Ultimate Surprise” as “The Renegade” - a knock-off of the Ultimate Warrior. Vader walks out later carrying Jimmy Hart's coat – the implication being Vader had taken him out. A very good pre-show from WCW this, building some geniune anticipation towards the King of the Road match, and some very innovative promo packages that would continue during the PPV itself. Mean Gene Okerlund is absent here, so Mike Tenay is making his WCW onscreen debut as an interviewer.
King Of The Road Match – Dustin Rhodes vs The Blacktop Bully
To call this a match is perhaps being generous. Rhodes and Bully faced off in a spectacle taped a few days before the PPV on the roads outside of Tupelo, Mississippi. The truck in question had been gutted and covered in bails of hay. The objective was to climb towards the front and honk the horn hoisted above the top.
I'll give them this, it was certainly unique. Grading this as any kind of wrestling performance is near-impossible, but both worked very hard in the unique and frequently dangerous circumstances. The occasional wrestling moves (a piledriver, a back suplex) lacked impact, and the match was heavily edited due to blading that would cause both men to be fired shortly afterwards. After knocking Dustin to the floor, Bully wins. Different, to say the least.
Martial Arts Match – Meng (w/ Col Robert Parker) vs “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan.
Quite what Jim Duggan thought when he heard “Martial Arts Match” that made him choose ripped jeans and a ripped sleeveless tee I have no idea. But Duggan, pre-match at least, was an absolute riot, acting like a drunk uncle at a wedding with his refusal to comply with the referee's orders. Meng, for what it's worth, sported some nice Oriental entrance wear, but one that probably cheapened his overall look.
Once the match began it turned to death very, very quickly. Duggan was laid out right at the start by a savatte kick from Meng. That, in all honesty, should've been that. Meng gained nothing from wrestling in a horribly insipid match that bared little resemblance to the “Martial Arts concept” beyond the referee's unique method counting a pinfall (are there even pinfalls in Martial Arts?). Meng eventually wins after Duggan gets distracted by Parker.
Boxer Vs Wrestler Match – Arn Anderson (w/ Col Robert Parker) vs Johnny B Badd (with Roc Finnegan – Badd's boxing trainer)
Badd has a genuine boxing background (Finnegan may well have been his trainer, he was certainly convincing) and to Badd's credit his boxing credentials shone through in the first two three minute rounds. Anderson gets his ass whipped in the first two rounds before laying out Badd with a DDT between rounds (“It's Uncensored” Bobby Heenan cried citing the lack of rules that justified this as acceptable – this would become an amusing running gag between Heenan and Schiavone during the show).
Anderson dominates round three with his wrestling until Finnegan jumps onto Anderson's shoulders. Badd eventually recovers in round four knocking Anderson spark out for the win. Like all matches barring the main event, this was a non-title match.
Randy Savage Vs Avalanche
The first actual wrestling match on the show, and if I told you Avalanche dominated large parts of it it'll probably be an indication of how good it was. Ultimately Avalanche would end up being attacked by a woman at ringside... that woman was Ric Flair, in drag (yes, really). The match doesn't end by DQ (it can't - “It's Uncensored!”), but the beatdown continues until Hogan runs out and makes the save... then the refere calls for a DQ anyway, and Savage wins.
Big Bubba Rodgers vs Sting
The first, and only, properly decent wrestling match on the card. Sting injures his knee going for a leapfrog, and that forms the basis for the rest of the match which basically involves Bubba working Sting's knee. Sting rallies, even going for a splash but Bubba kicks out. Eventually Sting goes for a bodyslam, but buckles under the weight and (surprisingly) Bubba picks up the clean victory.
Texas Tornado Match – Falls Count Anywhere – The Nasty Boys vs Harlem Heat (w/ Sister Sherri).
A gimmicked concession stand. A corndened off gimmicked concession stand. That formed the basis for this “Falls Count Anywhere” match as both teams were funnelled down the aisle way towards the stage area with a concession stand with no customers or servers. Here, both teams went to work on a piece of flooring that quickly became an ice rink once the drinks and other items had been used.
After both members of the Heat had been covered in mustard, Knobbs hits a bodyslam for a three count. For good measure, Sags pushes Sherri across the floor who loses her footing and slams hard into the ground. An absolute mess of a match that became almost comedic one they got to the conessions area. And indictment of WCW's issues at this stage that they couldn't use anything with any actual violence.
Strap Match For The WCW World Heavyweight Title – Hulk Hogan vs Vader (w/ Ric Flair)
Hogan it became clear was in a two on one situation when Flair (who hadn't fully removed the make-up from earlier) stayed in the ring. With that, The Ultimate Warrior's music hit... well, something very similar did and The Renegade stormed the ring Warrior style to even up the numbers. For what it's worth, the crowd pop was certainly akin to that of a returning Warrior.
What followed was a proper mess. Hogan and Vader often played second fiddle to the interaction between Flair and Renegade, and occasionally a strap match broke out. Hogan and Vader to their credit did a good job when they were given the opportunity. A chair gets involved (except WCW cannot show it because of recent political situations) – so on a show where anything goes we have to cut to a wide angle for a chair shot (“It's Censored!”).
Eventually, Hogan attaches himself to Flair then drags him around all four corners to win the match. Heenan points out the stupidity, but that's what happened when the political situation became so bad Flair was the only man willing to take the fall. Before the finish a masked man ran out and nailed Renegade with a chair. The masked man went away and re-appeared at the close of the match to make it a 3 on 2 situation against Hogan and Renegade. Except the new masked man wasn't the old one, as revealed by Arn Anderson walking out on the stage tied up. Savage unveils himself to be the new masked man and runs off the heels.
Overall a bizarre, bizarre show. In the 18 odd months doing this project this was in the bottom quarter of wrestling quality (believe me, there have been worse!), but probably in the top third of most watchable WCW shows. That being said, this show was a horrible indictment of WCW politically at the time (Bully/Dustin getting fired for following orders, the worked concession stand and Vader and Hogan refusing to lose to each other).
Score Rating: 3/10
Bits to go back and watch: Really difficult to say. You can skip the entire show if you wish, as there's nothing great (or even good, for that matter), but for notoriety the King Of The Road match and the Boxer vs Wrestler match is worth it if you have the time.