As anyone that listens to our new podcast ‘HOW Mania: The 90s Wrestling Podcast’ will know, the 90s was a glorious decade in wrestling. Full of great moments and memories but for every Steve Austin or The Rock, we have at least one Mantaur or Beaver Cleavage.
However as the old saying goes, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure and so there will be plenty of acts, moments and storylines from the 90s that you will enjoy immensely despite them being, if we’re honest, pure Wrestlecrap.
We asked the Hooked On Wrestling team to share their 90s guilty pleasures. Why don’t you let us know yours by reaching out to us on Twitter at @HO_Wrestling.
Ash Rose: As discussed on the first episode of Hooked On Mania. I LOVED Adam Bomb, the gear, the glasses the presentation, I genuinely thought he’d be a superstar. Brian Clark was also a terrific athlete and really agile for his size, if booked better the gimmick could have gone a long way.
Paul Benson: Where do I start? Basically the whole decade! I would probably give you a different answer if you asked this every day for a month but I’m going to go with The Quebecers. These guys had it all for me. I am a big fan of the over the top, self-congratulatory heel teams of that time and these guys did it best of all. They were so over the top with their gimmick, their music, their actions and everything else but like all the best heels, they could actually back it up in the ring. As characters, they took shortcuts because they could, not because they had to. I absolutely loved to hate these guys.
Liam Happe: Before the days of watching live shows such as Raw, Smackdown or Dynamite, I kept up with major happenings by watching two naff but awesome weekly syndicated shows: WWF All American Wrestling on Sky One and WCW Worldwide on ITV. Everything from the cheesy AAW opening music to Mean Gene and Bobby Heenan’s antics on location made for such nostalgic Saturday morning/Sunday evening comforts while the repeat of Worldwide on Saturday afternoons introduced me to the ridiculous and the sublime that was WCW. Not to mention the pop charts and NBA recap shows that often aired straight after it.
Christopher Napier: I was a total mark for the Ultimate Warrior vs. Papa Shango feud. The voodoo curses, the back goop pouring out of Warrior’s hair, all vs. Warriors usually demented promos. Just ludicrous fun.
Joshua Chapman: Eric Bischoff and his constant goading of Vince McMahon on Nitro that led to that infamous motorbike and crown segment. The fact that Bischoff went ahead with it knowing that Vince wouldn’t show up and used it create a whole angle and storyline absolutely blew my mind as a 4/5 year old and truth be told, it pushed me into watching both shows and developing my love of professional wrestling.
Cameron James Bennett: The D.O.A. I thought those guys were the coolest guys ever. The biker gear, the long hair (well, half of them anyway) even their names, Crush, Skull, 8-Ball and Chainz were super cool to 7 year old me. I Still hate The Truth Commission though, screw those guys.
Dean Ayass: Early 90s NWA: Norman the Lunatic. Such a ridiculous gimmick, played brilliantly by the late Mike Shaw. It also helped that my Dad’s name is Naman which he westernised to Norman, and he bore a slight passing resemblance to him, which amused me and my brother endlessly. Norman made staying up till 3am to watch WCW Worldwide worthwhile.
Rob McNichol: None. I tend not to feel guilt.
Justin Czerwonka: The whole Jake Roberts vs Rick Martel story from late 1990 into 1991. I know the Blindfold match doesn’t get a lot of love but I thought it was great. The entire crowd is into helping Jake out. Then you have Bobby Heenan on commentary screaming to help out Martel. It’s a fun little match and both guys were great in it. But as I said on the most recent ‘3 Beers Deep Wrestling Podcast’, Rick Martel’s whole WWF run is great.
DJ Stevie Cox: Jinsei Shinzaki. Aka Hakushi. I thought he had one of the best looking ‘outfits’ and being a bit of a fan of Japanese culture it resonated with me. He was great in the ring as well, why he never took off in WWF is still a bit beyond me. Great wrestler who deserved better.
Charlie Charles: My guilty wrestling pleasure from the 90s occurred earlier in the decade and it was the rivalry between Jake ‘The Snake’ Roberts and ‘Macho Man’ Randy Savage. When you looked at other storyline feuds at the time this one was very dark, sinister, thought-provoking and extremely personal. Jake played the part of a psychological heel to perfection, and Savage who was now a well-loved babyface once again defended his love of Ms Elizabeth, and never really turned down his intensity throughout. He just wanted to destroy Jake Roberts at any cost. I’ll never forget the image of Jake’s king cobra knawing on the arm of Savage for as long as I live! Trust me!