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Starrcade DVD Review

About.com Rating 4.5 Star Rating


Starrcade DVD Review

Starrcade: The Essential Collection 1983 - 2000

© 2008 World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
"If you're a student of the game and want to see how we got to where we are today, you really need to study Starrcade."
- Jim Ross

The Review and Recommendation

Starrcade was a WCW/NWA event that ran from 1983 - 2000. The grand-daddy of them all was the precursor to WrestleMania and the success of this event led to the creation of The Survivor Series. This three-disc DVD set features a 50-minute documentary about the highs and lows of this event. After that, the DVD features the 25 best matches in Starrcade history as voted by the fans in a poll on wwe.com.

The documentary is very well done and features many of the important players from that era. Many of the matches on this DVD are historic and must-see matches. The only problem with the matches is that 15 of the 25 matches on this set have been previously released.

Overall Recommendation: For fans of WCW, old-school wrestling, or of wrestling history, this is a must-buy. If you are just starting off your DVD collection, this should be a cornerstone to build it on. Even with so many matches available on other DVDs, the documentary and the matches that haven't been released before are worth the price of the DVD.

Matches on the DVD

For matches that are available on other DVDs, I will note the DVD it is also available on in parenthesis and italics.

Disc One

  • ’96: Roddy Piper vs. Hollywood Hulk Hogan (Born to Controversy: The Roddy Piper Story) - Billed the match of the decade, it was ten years too late.
  • ’89: Sting vs. The Great Muta - While their feud is lost in history to the Steamboat-Flair matches from that year, Sting and Muta put on some great matches as well.
  • ’92: Barry Windham & Brian Pillman vs. Ricky Steamboat & Shane Douglas - This match was during the era when the company had both NWA and WCW Championship belts.
  • ’98: Goldberg vs. Kevin Nash (nWo: Back in Black) - In the documentary, Arn Anderson and JR debate the end of this match. Considering this led to the fingerpoke of doom, history has proven this to be the wrong ending.
  • ’91: BattleBowl - In my opinion, this event was the end of Starrcade being the big event of the year for WCW.
  • ’93: Dustin Rhodes vs. Stunning Steve Austin in a Best-of-3 Falls Match - The US Championship is on the line in this match.
Disc Two

  • ’87: Road Warriors vs. Arn Anderson & Tully Blanchard (The Life & Death of the Road Warriors) - The Horsemen defend the belts in the hometown of the Warriors.
  • ’96: Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Jushin Thunder Liger (Rey Mysterio: Biggest Little Man) - Great cruiserweight match.
  • ’87: Rock ‘n Roll Express vs. The Midnight Express in a Scaffold Match - The greatest tag team feud in wrestling history finally makes it to DVD.
  • ’88: Ric Flair vs. Lex Luger - If Flair gets disqualified, he will lose the title.
  • ’95: Eddie Guerrero vs. Shinjiro Otani (Viva La Raza: The Legacy of Eddie Guerrero) - This is part of the World Cup tournament which WCW won over NJPW 4-3.
  • ’88: Dusty Rhodes & Sting vs. Road Warriors (American Dream: The Dusty Rhodes Story) - The Warriors had recently turned heel by attacking Sting and a few weeks later used one of their spikes on the eye of Dusty.
  • ’92: Sting vs. Big Van Vader - This is the final match of the King of Cable tournament.
  • ’83: Brisco Brothers vs. Jay Youngblood & Ricky Steamboat (The Most Powerful Families in Wrestling) - Too bad the younger fans remember Jerry Brisco as one of Mr. McMahon's stooges instead of the great wrestler that this match shows he was.
  • ’85: Dusty Rhodes vs. Ric Flair (The Ultimate Ric Flair Collection) - This match gave birth to the term the "Dusty Finish".
  • ’97: Eddie Guerrero vs. Dean Malenko (Viva La Raza: The Legacy of Eddie Guerrero) - The opening and closing match from the most important Starrcade of the WCW era are on this DVD.
Disc Three

  • '89: Road Warriors vs. The Steiner Brothers - Two of the greatest tag teams in wrestling history in their first battle against each other.
  • ’00: 3 Count vs. Jamie Knoble & Evan Karagias vs. Jung Dragons in a Ladder Match (The Ladder Match) - A tag team match that featured a goal for a singles wrestler sums up a lot of the problems that WCW had at this time.
  • ’89: Sting vs. Ric Flair - Thankfully, the rematch the following year wasn't voted for instead.
  • ’83: Greg Valentine vs. Roddy Piper in a Dog Collar Match (Greatest Wrestling Stars of the ‘80s; Born to Controversy: The Roddy Piper Story) - This match does not have the idiotic touching the four corner rule.
  • ’86: Road Warriors vs. Midnight Express in a Scaffold Match (The Life & Death of the Road Warriors) - Before Mick Foley was thrown off the top of the cage, this match featured the most replayed big bump in wrestling history.
  • ’97: Sting vs. Hollywood Hulk Hogan (Hulk Hogan: The Ultimate Anthology) - The infamous, controversial, and much debated "fast" three count.
  • ’83: Ric Flair vs. Harley Race in a Steel Cage Match (The Ultimate Ric Flair Collection) - This is the first time that the NWA Championship changed hands in a cage.
  • ’85: Magnum T.A. vs. Tully Blanchard in a Steel Cage I Quit Match (Bloodbath: Wrestling’s Most Incredible Steel Cage Matches) - This is my second favorite match of all-time.
  • ’93: Ric Flair vs. Vader - At least one of the top five matches is being released on DVD for the first time.
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