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NITRO: The Incredible Rise and Inevitable Collapse of Ted Turner's WCW
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NITRO: The Incredible Rise and Inevitable Collapse of Ted Turner's WCW

4.29  ·  Rating details ·  666 ratings  ·  84 reviews

"The most definitive, well written and thoroughly researched book on the rise and fall of WCW."
--Eric Bischoff, former WCW President

"This is - without question - the very best book ever written on professional wrestling."
--Conrad Thompson

"Well written and captivating...a fresh take on [the] time period."
--Chris Harrington, AEW VP of Business Strategy

"...may be the

Kindle Edition, 592 pages
Published July 11th 2018 by
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Start your review of NITRO: The Incredible Rise and Inevitable Collapse of Ted Turner's WCW
Aug 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: pro-wrestling
When I first saw that this book was coming out, my initial response was "Why?" This subject seemed like it was exhaustively covered in Death of WCW, a book I've read 4 times and know well. However, author Guy Evans has done a remarkable job in creating a new history of WCW that is in some ways even more thorough than its predecessor. There are plenty of stories in this book that even the most impassioned wrestling fan will not have heard before or know in their entirety.

Evans talks to a vast nu
Jun 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I loved wrestling as a kid. Watching wrestling with my brother was a massive part of my childhood. I'll always remember the traumatic experience of my dad bringing us home a 'wrestling movie' and it turning out to be a behind the scenes documentary that revealed to us it was ALL FAKE.

Well this book goes to show just how real a lot of the drama really was. The events onscreen reflected the power struggles behind the scenes, people played exaggerated versions of themselves, real betrayals and secr
Jan 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, 2019
Since the fall of WCW and the end of WWE’s Attitude Era there have been countless books, podcasts, documentaries and shoot interviews (interviews with wrestlers out of character) about the last great boom period in professional wrestling.  With his book NITRO, author Guy Evans enters an already crowded marketplace.  Did he succeed in his goal of putting together what he considers the most comprehensive look at the rise and fall of Ted Turner’s World Championship Wrestling?

Yes.  Absolutely.

What s
Jason Schneeberger
Mar 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This might possibly be the greatest book on the subject of wrestling that I have ever read, and I’ve read a ton over the years. If you thought you knew everything that went down with WCW, you’re wrong, unless of course you’ve read this book. There is so much information in this book that I’ve never seen anywhere else and how deep it goes into everything that transpired with the death of WCW, it’s pretty safe to say that this book is the final word on this period of wrestling history. Superb read ...more
Oliver Bateman
Dec 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
An exhaustively researched "business history" of NITRO. Never has so much work, undertaken as a labor of love, gone into such a project...the book is nearly 600 pages long, and about 75% is a combination of wrestlers and Turner executives/production people speaking on the record. Everyone knows "The Death of WCW" as the book that helped launch the "indie wrestling book" phenomenon, but this book is something else entirely...not so much funny/critical as even-handed and detailed. ...more
Apr 26, 2020 rated it liked it
"Who gives a fuck about KISS?"

Man, well said. If only someone in charge would have realized that 20 some years ago.

I don't know about you, but I'm always a bit suspicious when one of the glowing endorsements for the book is the main subject of the book. Overall, I kind of feel like Eric Bischoff got off easy. On one hand, yes, he's responsible for bringing wrestling back to mainstream relevance, but man, did that guy have a lot of awful booking ideas and poor financial planning.

A few things I
Apr 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kindle-unlimited
A thoroughly enjoyable read, I have read several books about WCW and WWF during the times of the 'Monday Nights War'. This book was very interesting analysing WCW from a business standpoint as part of Turner.

A book that is a history of the company of WCW as opposed to the wrestling, it is mentioned how the angles worked and thrived and bombed but this isnt a book about the wrestling.

It was very interesting and I would happily read this again and I gleaned a lot of things I never knew or realise
Josh Polston
Jun 17, 2020 rated it did not like it
I gave this book 1 star only because zero stars isn’t an option. Don’t be fooled by the cover, this is NOT a book about Nitro. This is NOT a book about the Monday Night Wars. This is NOT a book about wrestling. This is a book about how to mismanage and sabotage a company making millions of dollars a year. If you grew up watching wrestling and lived through the Monday Night Wars and want to relive some of that nostalgia I’d suggest reading the Death of WCW. A few major moments that helped the ris ...more
Jun 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hands down thee best wrestling book I've ever read. I know this book is called Nitro so you don't need to be a genius to see its based around the WCW side of the story but the depth of information in this book really does paint a glowing picture of the situation on both sides. I like how the book isn't just quick to point out the things we already know and is impartial. I've been a wrestling fan for 30 years and there were things I found in this book that I knew nothing about and things that I t ...more
Michael Knolla
Jun 29, 2020 rated it liked it
Benefits from its focus on the TV-side of the WCW business with an emphasis on the latter. In other words this is NOT a history of the Monday Night Wars, though of course they play a part. Nor is it a history of either the televised angles or the backstage machinations of the Nitro era, though again they are not ignored. But the overall framework that WCW was first and foremost a business that struggled to address and accommodate the unusual nature of its product’s rise and then fall in prominen ...more
Arttie Parker
Jul 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
While not quite as entertaining or character-centric as "The Death of WCW", "Nitro" manages to suck in the reader with numerous after-the-fact interviews from not only wrestlers and bookers, but from the "suits" in charge. "Nitro" serves as a great reminder that in the world of professional wrestling/sports entertainment, few things are as bizarre as the truth, and the truth of how this once dominant company collapsed likely couldn't be written by the best wrestling writers alive. ...more
Jason Weber
Oct 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This review will be quick.
This book is a MUST READ if you are or have been a wrestling fan in your life!
Edward Morton
Apr 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The book was great! There was so much details, in what went on behind the scenes. I learn so much that i didn't know. ...more
Jun 26, 2020 rated it liked it
As in-depth an expose of the wrestling business as you can find, goes beyond the usual oral history format to dig into the financial records and court documents, etc.; while relying on interviews of performers and writers, the authors also spoke to corporate execs and finance and advertising people. Paints a pretty complete picture, most of which has been verified elsewhere. I do feel the author relied a little too heavily on Eric Bischoff: as a source he’s not totally reliable. And Paul Heyman’ ...more
Jan 08, 2019 rated it liked it
Although covering the well-trodden trail of the late 90's/early 00's Wrestling "Monday Night Wars", Evans' book is different to most retellings as it's almost entirely from the perspective of the loser - WCW. His research is excellent and it's clear he's been able to get exclusive access to a number of ex WCW employees. The problem as ever with Professional Wrestling non-fiction is that almost everyone is a compulsive liar with a cripplingly large ego, Evans takes a lot of the book from intervie ...more
Ryan Papaserge
Aug 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is an essential read for anyone interested in the history of professional wrestling's Monday Night Wars (and media geeks in general). The author clearly put years of time and effort into putting this volume together and it shows. Evans' work is well-researched and the interviews with Turner/Time Warner brass are quite revealing. It sometimes feels like the narrative of WCW has been in somewhat of a mocking tone since 2001, so it's good to have this "inside baseball" view on things.

My only c
Bill Hooten
Jun 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
Born and raised in Arkansas, and learned about professional wrestling watching Leroy McGuirk's televised shows. Always enjoyed it, and figured out early in life that it was scripted and telling a story -- more than two men assaulting each other. When I moved to Alabama in 1972, it was long until I found out about Georgia Championship Wrestling and became enamored with it. As cable TV grew, it seemed that I could watch it wherever we moved -- Texas and then back to Arkansas. I never cared about t ...more
Apr 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderful insight into the well remembered "Monday Night Wars" of the late 1990s that arguabnly elevated Professionall Wtestling to a highpoint of output, cretivity, mass market appeal that it has never reached since and, you call reasonably claim had never seen before.

Nitro was the flagship live programme from World Championship Wrestling that challenged and for about two years (the autumn of 1995 until the summer of 1997) actually overtook the Wrestling powerhouse of Vinve McMahon's
Zach Templeman
Jun 07, 2020 rated it liked it
I decided to add this to my collection after being entertained by "The Death of WCW" and constant promotion via Eric Bischoff's 83 Weeks podcast. The book itself is very well researched, and I'm glad that Guy was able to interview multiple executives from outside the core business from Turner to provide insight on just how much WCW was ultimately set-up to fail.

The one downfall of this book that I particularly had a hard time with was how fractured the dialogue could get. There would be points
Feb 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When I saw this book I had to purchase it. I was a WCW fan back then and though this will be another trip down memory lane. But I figured what more could be said about WCW that hasn't been said in the 18 years since WWF bought it. Was I ever wrong! This book is the most in-depth and well researched book on the whole rise and fall of WCW, I have ever read.

The author has countless interviews with both on screen talent, behind the scenes talent and people inside Turner. This book is less a story in
Ben Reid
Apr 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Thoroughly insightful and entertaining book. I grew up a WWE fan, and only a WWE fan. I wasn’t lucky enough to watch the Monday Night Wars or WCW at all in it’s heyday. I have, thanks to the WWE Network, managed to go back and watched key events and such since. It seemed the greatest boom in wrestling history throughout the 90’s.

I’ve seen documentaries of the Death of WCW, but this book takes you through the entire landscape of WCW. Not just the product and in ring, but behind the scenes, financ
Sêan Reid
Jan 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
I had heard good things about ‘NITRO' for awhile but could never justify the price of the ebook/kindle price, but thanks to Black Friday/cyber Monday price drop, I downloaded it. Thankfully it didn’t disappoint.

If you’re expecting this to be an inside account of the booking behind WCW’s on-screen presentation, you might be disappointed. While there are tales of the booking, especially during Vince Russo’s involvement, 'NITRO' tends to focus on the corporate side of WCW and how it was treated (o
Mike Seiber
Feb 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Wow is what I have to say. I have read many wrestling books but they have been mostly biographies and this may be one of the most comprehensive books on the sport that I have ever read. I have read Death of WCW and was expecting a similar type of book on how the stories ended WCW. Instead, I got a book that looked at the business side of the company and how the running of the show, contracts, board meetings, and merger of various businesses affected the business. There is plenty of talk on the i ...more
Jake Chavez
I am a huge WCW mark. I knew already about 80% of what is covered in this book, however there is a TON of info you won't find anywhere else. This book has a lot of numbers and dollar amounts that I'm sure people will find interesting. It speaks in-depth from a Turner/marketing aspect more so than just wrestling. Plus a lot of tidbits and behind the scenes stories which are fun to hear.

One thing however is this book is made up primarily of quotes. This guy said.. and this person said.. stuff like
Montgomery Brown
Apr 11, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2020
Having also read "Death Of WCW" this book concentrates a lot more on the Turner organisation and what was going on behind the scenes and in the boardrooms than "Death of WCW" and it rarely touches on what was happening on-screen on Nitro and Thunder. It's a lot more even-handed than "Death Of WCW" and infinitely better written although it's very in-depth and can be a little long-winded in places. Expect entire chapters dedicated to advertising and key demographics, finances and profiles on execu ...more
Sep 05, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Poorly-written hot garbage that's more about the tedious machinations of corporations than the grinding, sad last days of a failing wrestling promotion. There are very few stories from the talent involved, but a great many repetitive anecdotes from corporate executives who spew boilerplate platitudes about the mercenary nature of business. It reads a hundred years long, and yet Evans still pads the page count by recycling entire paragraphs from chapter to chapter. The writing, when it strains to ...more
Mike Goldstein
I found this interesting. It seems like the author gained a lot of access to inside sources, and he does a great job of working through the complexities of the television industry. It was fun, too, to relive some storylines from when I was a kid, though occasionally the writing trended a little too far into Wikipedia-style recaps of on-air content. The writing overall really isn't anything to get too excited about, and it does drag a little toward the end as the WCW collapses into political disa ...more
Dec 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The most comprehensive and thorough take on WCW. Eric Bischoff has been harping that author Guy Evans really got it right -- and I'd agree. He takes an approach of journalist instead of editorializing dirt sheet writer and is really able to explore the corporate decisions behind Turner's wrestling empire. We all know about WCW's misfires after 1998, but Evans contextualizes them in ways that most wrestling fans will be surprised to read. If you enjoyed The Death of WCW, this is the perfect, smar ...more
Jun 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Didn't find this book as entertaining as "Death of WCW" but maybe that's because "Death of WCW" is all BS like Eric Bishchoff likes to say.

Overall Nitro, was a much more in depth book. With interviews from people at Turner, WCW and other places that were linked to WCW.

Its definitely worth reading if you were a fan of WCW those days. The most interesting part to me was the end days and who all tried to buy it.

On a side note, 20 years later and TNT is getting back in the wrestling game with AEW.
Jul 03, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hyper detailed and ultra poorly laid out on the page. Follows just what the title says. I remember most of the people who are mentioned in it so it's relatively easy story to follow unlike the previously read "Death of the Territories." It's essentially the Eric Bischoff story with some bits about Ted Turner, DDP and Goldberg. Besides the horrid presentation of the type within the book is that there was not enough pages devoted to Awesome Mike Awesome, Eddie Guerrero or Ultimo Dragon. Fuck, Awes ...more
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