An infamous World Championship Wrestling card that will always be remembered for two reasons: the absolutely dreadful Hogan-Warrior II match and how the PPV feed died in several markets near the end of the show due to the event going over their time limit.
Just how awful was Warrior/Hogan II? A summary of the match taken from The Death of WCW by R.D. Reynolds and Bryan Alvarez:
“WCW did no favors with Halloween Havoc, it almost felt as if the company was trying to see how bad a show they could put on that people would still pay to see. The Hogan versus Warrior rematch was so far beyond atrocious that it actually made their War Games match look like a Ric Flair versus Ricky Steamboat classic. The bout went on for nearly fifteen minutes, and it’s no exaggeration that these two forty-plus-year-old men could realistically only go about fifteen seconds. Without question, the highlight of the match was a truly ridiculous spot that looked as though two kindergartners were on the playground. Remember when you were in preschool and you learned how to do the log roll? The one where you lie on your back and just roll over and over sideways? Well, Hogan tried to drop an elbow on Warrior, but Warrior log-rolled out of the way. Hogan decided to try again and again, Warrior log-rolled out of the way. Suddenly — and I can only imagine the time and effort that went into plotting this spot backstage — Warrior reversed direction and began to roll towards Hogan. You’d think that Hogan would have several options at this point: step to the left; step to the right; or perhaps, jump. Instead, he seemed stricken with fear, because he just stood there as Warrior rolled right into his legs, making him fall down.
If that wasn’t bad enough, a spot was planned for later in which Hogan was supposed to throw fire at Warrior. In wrestling, fire is created by lighting a piece of flash paper. In the corner, Hogan poured his fire-making paraphernalia out of a Zip-Loc baggie, Warrior came at him. The audience, surely on the edges of their seats, then witnessed Hogan throw a piece of flash paper at Warrior. You read that right: he forgot to light it on fire. The fans, who had been chanting “WARRIOR SUCKS!” and cheering Hogan earlier, booed loudly. Hogan tried again. This time, the paper lit on fire, but it ignited in his hand and burned out. Hogan looked terrified. Warrior was terrified too, and didn’t know what to do.
Finally, Hogan’s real-life wrestler nephew Horace ran in and hit Warrior with an incredibly weak chairshot, which Warrior sold like he’d been shot with a handgun. Hogan dove in to get the pin. Afterwards, he told Horace that he’d ‘passed the test,’ which begs the question: how bad could the match have been if he’d failed?
In fact, it would be years until I managed to be able to actually see the end of the Warrior/Hogan match for myself as I remember my feed dying soon after Hogan throwing a “fireball”. The PPV feed eventually came back on, but it was several minutes into the Goldberg/DDP main event, an amazing match that would be replayed in full the following night on Monday Nitro.
The Halloween Havoc 1998 card in its entirety:
WCW World Television Champion Chris Jericho vs Raven
Disco Inferno vs Juventud Guerrera
WCW Cruiserweight Champion Billy Kidman vs Disco Inferno
Rick Steiner and Buff Bagwell vs The Giant and Scott Steiner
Rick Steiner vs Scott Steiner
Scott Hall vs Kevin Nash
WCW United States Heavyweight Champion Bret Hart vs Sting
Hollywood Hulk Hogan vs The Warrior
WCW World Heavyweight Champion Goldberg vs Diamond Dallas Page