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[1996-02-12-WCW-Nitro] Interview: Ric Flair, Woman & Elizabeth

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This is one of my favorite Flair promos ever. Woman and Elizabeth wheel out a hospital bed and Flair pops out of it wearing a suit and sunglasses, and holding the world title. He's overly excited and totally in his element. Elizabeth has a few lines to get in which she almost fumbles, but makes it through. A hot program with Flair acting more like himself than he had in many years.

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Flair was awesome during that time. Really the last time he was the great Ric Flair to me. In the ring he wasn't all that but as a whole, Flair in 96, until the nWo really took over, was awesome. An both women were just smoking. It's so tragic how they ended up dying...

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At the time, I really hated his "Hyper Ric" persona. Felt like one of his many mid-life crisis where he thought the only way he could remain relevant was cranking things up to 11 (or 12... 13...). He's retained much of that Hyper Ric persona from that time on, and I just don't think that persona is as good on the mic as his one in the 80s, nor find it entertaining at all.

 

Kind of a contrast to Hollywood Hogan, which was a new persona for Hogan that I thought was often really well done.

 

John

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I liked Ric's character fine at the time especially his interactions with Okerland which were always amusing. His matches - even the ones that were thought well of at the time - tend to not hold up for me from that era though I wouldn't call them "bad." Was talking to goodhelmet about this the other day but Flair has become such a strong garbage wrestler in his super old age, that I sort of wish he had somehow ended up in FMW in 96. It's pure fantasy of course and there was zero chance of it ever happening, but I think had he gone that route he would be remembered as one of the best "death match" wrestlers as well and I don't think his stock in the "best of all time" debate would have gone down as much as it has with certain segments of the smark universe (not that he gives a shit one way or the other).

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I think it would have been better if he went to ECW and had a feud with Douglas. Not as likely, but a good thing to muse on.

During the territories days we might've gotten that matchup. Flair (or Funk or Race for that matter) as traveling champion defending in ECW would've been golden.

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Heel Elizabeth interviews aren't much better. Flair is missing his tie. Ric was great getting all psyched up and strutting. Elizabeth talks about taking half of everything Savage has owned. Liz gets some extending talking time there.

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MISS BY GOD ELIZABETH is looking spectacular in her new leather outfit but she should talk on a live mic as little as possible. She actually did some good sitdown interviews around this time, though. Ric, philanthropist that he is, fulfills Randy's promise that he'd leave the arena in a gurney. He's not worried about his mandatory rematch with Savage next week. Gloating Ric is almost always the best Ric.

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Flair is totally in his element and him hopping up from the gurney to dance around is Flair at his best. He gives another inspired promo and I do wish he had some classic matches from around this time as his promos the first couple of months have been fabulous.

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