Ruthless Aggression #20. Vengeance: Night of Champions (June 24, 2007)

On the Card: Ruthless Aggression #20 Vengeance: Night of Champions – June 24, 2007

The Ruthless Aggression Era was a time when the WWE roster was so huge and so varied that they had no way of continuing storylines each week on their two main shows – RAW and Smackdown – and so they created the draft where wrestlers and announcers would be drafted onto either one of the two shows. Smackdown wrestlers would not (usually) be able to appear on Raw or interact with Raw wrestlers and vice versa.

Ten years ago, on June 24, 2007, Vengeance: Night of Champions 2007 aired. It was a WWE PPV, as WWE had dropped Brand-named PPVs after No Way Out in February. This one was tri-branded and had Raw, Smackdown and ECW matches on the card. It is noticeable for taking place on June 24th, 2007, which was the date that Chris Benoit hung himself after murdering his wife and son. He no-showed this PPV and was replaced by Johnny Nitro in the CM Punk ECW Heavyweight Championship match. I will go into more detail about this horrific crime and the effect it had on the wrestling business as well as myself in the conclusion to this review. For now, I will state that personally, the PPV came at a time where I had grown weary with professional wrestling, confused by the sheer number of wrestlers and unwilling to spend so much time per week watching hours of footage and trawling through shows, replays, promos and matches. I simply watched the PPVs. Over the next few weeks, I will review this PPV from the perspectives of a fan looking back at it after a decade as well as my original thoughts as a younger man watching it at the time.

WWE Vengeance: Night of Champions 2007

Night of Champions

Did it just use its own name as a tagline? My God.

The promo package tells us that everyone wants to win the gold, which is true, and that this PPV has a gimmick where every belt is on the line! Whaaat? I’m sure this has happened before.

Batista and Edge in a Last Chance Match. Yeo. Will Batista win? Probably.

Bobbo Lasher and Mick Foley and Randy Orton and Booker T and John Cena for the WWE Championship. Mentalnuts.

There’s a shot of an altar with… wrought iron? Tentacles? Who knows? We are welcomed into the Toyota Centre in Houston, Texas by Jumpin’ Jim Ross and Jerry “the King” Lawler. But first, Justin Roberts introduces Barry Windham and Mike Rotundo! That’s right, old Blackjack Winham and IRS, brothers-in-law and members of the US Express. They won the belts twice in 1985 and held them for a total of 137 days. Not too shabby. Cut to some lovely footage of the lads with Captain Lou Albano.

No time! No time to talk! Old Jeff and Fat Matt Hardy are rocking to the ring, beltless. They lost the belts to Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch on the June 4th RAW, one day after beating the World’s Greatest Tag Team in a ladder match at One Night Stand. Some facts there for you.

(Note: Before the PPV began, there was a dark match that featured Super Crazy and Carlito. At least one of them should not have been there.)

Finally, JR and King introduce us to the announce team alongside 15,000 roaring fans in the arena and 247,000 at home (a drop, once again, from the 337,000 the year previous). JR and King represent RAW and… there are other announcers, too, apparently, but we will get to them soon enough. JR states that Cade and Murdoch are opportunistic for taking the belts one day after a big ol’ ladder match. The crowd bay for the Hardys.

Tag Team Match for the World Tag Team Championship: Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch (c) vs. Matt and Jeff Hardy.

Champs never come out first but always get first billing. Them’s the rules.

We have nine matches on the card. Almost all of them will be sub-ten-minutes. Fat Matt to start off against Cade. JR gives off about Cade and Murdoch for a while. Despite their match at Judgment Day, Cade and Murdoch are the nasty heels. Cade holds out his hand, shit eating grin upon his face, and Matt takes advantage, making the audience cheer for him. Lovely running of the ropes and Jeff hits a cross-body to knock Cade down. Jeff is in and they botch a leg-drop-senton double team. Murdoch comes in and a botched swinging neckbreaker. Murdoch gets a kick in the face and lovely enziguri before Matt comes in with an axe-handle nothing. Lovely Poetry in Motion and slingshot baseball slide. Matt comes in and both Hardys clean house. Matt and Jeff stand in the ring as Cade and Murdoch say, “fuck it!” and walk off. Hardys roll out and beat on them for being cowards.

Both Cade and Murdoch rock in and Matt takes pity on Murdoch, who begs for his life. Murdoch tags in Cade sneakily and as Matt squares up to Murdoch, Cade Pearl Harbours him. Crowd bay for Jeff and the hot tag is built up. Murdoch’s eye is hurt from an injury at Smackdown, I think. Cade pops in and works on Matt’s left knee. Murdoch comes in and does the same. Matt fights back but Murdoch takes over with a single legged Boston Crab. Matt crawls away to the ropes and fails to reach them. More pressure applied to Matt’s knee. Matt might tap out. Jeff is desperate to get in and Matt kicks Murdoch on the face, runs up the hot tag, Jeff bounces in and botches his way through a clearing of the house.

Cade gets pinned but kicks out. Jeff retaliates, hits a lovely twisting moonsault, fails another pin. Sit-out vertical suplex and Jeff goes to the top rope and twice does Murdoch knock him off. Lovely sit-out spinebuster by Cade and they retain by pin.

Lance Cade has pinned Matt Hardy. Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch retain the World Tag Team Championship in 08:55.

2017 comments:

Good opener. Both teams are very good, though have distinctly different styles. Although the Hardys were not as high-speed as they usually are, it was a clean win and both teams go over. Well, it wasn’t totally clean and the champions are obviously cheaters, but that’s that.

2007 comments:

No Swanton? No Twist of Fate? No wonder they lost.

Grade: B.

Matt looks on in horror as Lance and Trevor leave. Trevor has a wee word with the US Express there. Neither look impressed. Matt sits near Jeff as replays the closing moments, including the seemingly botched interruption. The champs say, “All by the rules!”

Cut to Booker and his mental with Sharmell. It’s been a while since we’ve seen Booker – since Wrestlemania 23, in fact. Booker – in an English accent, no less – states all of his championships and gives his Queen a resume that proves that he should be a champion tonight.

Cut to Cowardly Cole and Cunt JBL. They talk about Eddie and JBL talks about his Eddie’s career will be intertwined with his own. Yes, but not because you’re a good wrassler, JBL, but because Eddit accidentally cut himself badly in a fight. We see a match betwixt our boy Eddie and Bork Lensar, who is a shaved gorilla, but otherwise a lovely bloke.

Crowd chant for Eddie as his less-interesting nephew Chavo comes out.

Straight-up Shoot Fact: Chavo was one of the gentlemen who Benoit got in contact with regarding his suicide. Chavo had spoken to Benoit on Saturday and Benoit had told Chavo that he loved him, which Chavo later said sounded “off” to him. Chavo was also a recipient of a text from Benoit and his wife’s phone giving their address. Spooky.

Chavo is the Cruiserweight champion… and comes down first, apparently. God dammit, Fed. Is it just me? Am I wrong. No. No, it is the Federation who is wrong.

Cut to Dean Malenko, the man of 1000 holds, which would be interesting, of course, if not for Jericho, who knows one more.

Jimmy Wang Yang turns up, the resident redneck. What a lad. I love this boy. He’s brilliant. He’s a real lad. Look at him, with his moustache and the whole wife-beater-and-jeans thing going on. He’s like Dean Ambrose, only with talent.

WWE Cruiserweight Championship match: Chavo Guerrero (c) vs. Jimmy Wang Yang.

Referee Charles “Little Naitch” Robinson there as Cole tells us that the first Cruiserweight Champ was Brian Pillman. That was back in WCW, but they don’t tell you that. Jimmy hits a lovely hip toss and a roll-up but fails. Chavo’s father, Chavo Classic was also Cruiserweight Champ. Chavo calls the ref over, takes advantage of the situation and attacks Jimmy before tossing him into the corner. Jimmy takes over, hits a lovely dropkick and an amazing suplex. Pin and fail.

Jimmy does a sweet run up Chavo’s body and backflips. Chavo baseball slides Jimmy on the apron and tosses him back in, going top rope but getting an enziguri from Jimmy to knock him to the outside. Jimmy goes top rope and hits a cross-body. Jimmy rolls Chavo back in and hits the pin but fails. Fantastic hip-toss from Chavo into the corner, by Christ. Nice side-suplex from Chavo and a pin but fail. Chavo gets Jimmy in a hold and he fights back, tosses Chavo, gets reversed, falls, and Chavo hits the senton. Very confident Guerrero. The crowd chant, “We want Wang!”

Jimmy fights back and hits a wonderful backdrop followed by an Atomic drop onto Chavo’s balls. Jimmy hits an odd cartwheel attack, another cross-body from the top rope and almost a pin-fall. Chavo hits the Three Amigos and gets boos. Jimmy escapes, goes for a pin but Chavo has the bottom rope. Chavo rolls out of the way of a moonsault and hits a Gory Special attempt. Roll-up and Chavo kicks out. The crowd boo. Jimmy is lifted onto the turnbuckle, is knocked onto the ground and Chavo hits the frog splash for the win.

Chavo Guerrero has pinned Jimmy Wang Yang and retains the WWE Cruiserweight Championship in 10:16.

2017 comments:

Good old match. Not as flippy as we expect from Jimmy, but he was so over, it didn’t matter.

2007 comments:

Man, fuck Chavo.

Grade: B.

JR uses the Owen Voice to tell us about Vince McMahon’s alleged death by limo explosion.

Straight-up Shoot Fact: This is infamous because the Raw following Vengeance was due to be a tribute to our man Vince, but it was changed, obviously, to a tribute to Benoit before the news was revealed hours later about the truth of Benoit’s actions. At the ECW the following night, Vince took back the Benoit reference and began the long, arduous process of bleaching him from the WWE.

JR introduces a look into Vince’s “mindset”, showing his last moments and the premonition he had about a dark cloud that then was revealed to be his upcoming death. Twice, Vince looks behind himself and then he hesitates before opening the door to his limo, he steps in, steps out and blows up. The footage was made from spliced footage filmed the Sunday before Raw and an outside agency – Zenith Pyrotechnology – was called in to make it look as effective as possible. Crowd sing, “Na na na na! Waaaay, goodbye.”

Then there’s an opinion piece as to who was responsible for Vince dying. Cut to Bobby Lashley being asked if he had anything to do with the death. He says he wishes Vince was alive to see the look on his face when he wins the belt tonight.

Cut to Tazz and Joey Styles wanking off about Tazz being the greatest ECW Champion of all time.

CM Punk comes down. This is a match to determine who should be the ECW Champion. As mentioned, his opponent in this match was going to be Benoit. Punk half-heartedly throws his t-shirt into the crowd.

For some reason, Justin Roberts introduces Johnny Nitro before he enters the Titantron. No Melina or paparazzi or Joey Mercury tonight so it’s clear that Johnny was added as an afterthought. But Melina is actually on the card tonight, so I don’t see why they couldn’t have her walk him to the ring?

Match for the vacant ECW World Championship: CM Punk vs. Johnny Nitro.

Johnny takes the time to get out of the corner as the crowd chant, “We want Benoit!” Gulp.

The two circle one another and Johnny actually checks the chants before CM Punk kicks the shite out of Nitro, who rolls out of the ring, steps on the apron, slaps Punk and is chased about the ring. Punk slaps the face off Nitro and he gets a lovely springboard kick to the head from Nitro. Punk shakes off the cobwebs as Nitro gets him into a rest hold for a bit as they decide on the next spot. Punk fights out, gets a clothesline to the face and then a boot from Nitro.

Lovely armbar. The crowd want Benoit and he shouts, “You got Johnny Nitro!” The announcers discuss the late change and what that means for Johnny in Kayfabe. Backbreaker and another sleeper hold. Punk fights out of it, gives a lovely enziguri to Nitro and both men take their time getting up. Punk takes over, booting Nitro all about the place and attempting a pin. Nitro reverses a knee lift and Nitro gets a pin with his feet on the ropes but the ref sees it. Punk goes for the GTS but Nitro escapes into a sunset flip which Punk refuses to Aloha Arn. A bulldog from Punk and he pops up to the top rope, attempts a springboard which Johnny escapes from. He then hits a swinging elevated neckbreaker and get the pin.

Johnny Nitro has pinned CM Punk to win the ECW World Championship in 8:00.

2017 comments:

Going through the motions. Neither of the men had a chance to put on a great match and you could see Punk was Grumps McGraw in this match.

2007 comments:

Where was Benoit?

Grade: C.

So, it turns out that Punk was going to fail anyways. That’s a kick in the teeth, isn’t it?

Cut to WrestleMania XII where Bret and Shawn squared off in an Iron Man match for the championship. Shawn refused to submit at the end of the match and it continued under Sudden Death, which is a nice way of saying that now it is a normal match, I guess. Shawn got the pin after a Sweet Chin Music.

Cut to Mick Foley in the locker room, wrapping his knuckles. Randy is there and threatens Mick saying that he has ended careers. Mick reminds Randy that he’s an absolute headcase. Randy says that he won the last match they had. He won it. He won that match.

Cut to Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat and his Intercontinental Championship win. He then pops out himself, waves to the crowd and gets more than the US Express earlier.

Out comes the current Intercontinental Champion, Santino Marella, who was apparently just a fan until he beat Umaga in Milan.

Out comes Umaga, who was an absolute murderer until Cena destroyed him. Now he’s back to just being another wrestler. He shouts at the ring steps for being a mean old set of steps.

WWE Intercontinental Championship match: Santino Marella (c) vs. Umaga.

Umaga screams and Santino dodges out of the way of his charge, attempts a roll-up and fails. Santino is on Umaga’s back and the Samoan drops backwards, squashing Marella. Umaga goes for a splash and Santino gets the knees up but no joy. The crowd chant, “Umaga’s gonna kill you!” and the Samoan gets the Vulcan Nerve Pinch on Santino. Marella fights back, attempts to run away and he sells his hand being paralysed. Umaga lifts him up, beats him in the corner and after the shortest five count in history, the ref calls for a DQ.

Umaga has been disqualified by failing to move away from the corner after a five count. Santino Marella retains the WWE Intercontinental Championship by default in 02:34.

2017 comments:

Ugh. If you’re going for a short match, make it believable. Have Umaga fight the referee, maybe, toss him, refuse to let go, bloody Santino up. It just looks like Umaga has been unfairly treated. Shit. Who is the heel here?

2007 comments:

This Santino might be the best champion ever.

Grade: C.

Umaga chases the referee, goes top-rope and splashes Santino. Why? He should be mad at the ref. The crowd chant for “U-Mah-Gah!” and he leaves. He’s clearly not a heel. He rolls back in, shots the thumb and hits the Samoan Spike into Marella’s throat. The crowd chant, “One more time!” but he does not hit it one more time. Maria rocks down the ramp and rolls into the ring to look after Santino. Replays of the ref giving a five count and instantly calling DQ. As Daniel Bryan would say, “He has until five, referee.”

Cut to an ad for Summerslam, featuring Jackass.

Cut to Coward Moustache Michael Cole and Cunt JBL as they talk for some time about the limo explosion. Daniel Beck, the lead federal investigator for the incident. He tells us that forensics have confirmed DNA evidence for Vince, the limo driver and another third party, who is a “well-known personality”.

Straight-up Shoot Fact: Cunt President Donal Trump legitimately thought that Vince was dead. I would normally take the time to point out how imbecilic this was… if not for the fact that stocks dropped because of the storyline, showing that money doesn’t necessarily equate to common sense.

Reminder that tomorrow is a three-hour celebration of Vince. Eep.

Cut to Magnum TA, former US Champ, who survived a car crash that left him in the wreck for two hours before ambulance arrived. This car crash ended his career and it was feared that damage to his vertebrae would leave him paralysed for life, but he was able to walk again with the aid of a cane.

MVP appears, ready to kick arse in his onesie. Farty pyro fires off. He squares off to Magnum TA who is standing beside Sign Guy, who has a sign that says, “A Horseman vs A Horse’s Ass”. Brilliant. The jerk beside Magnum TA is doing the Cena, “U Can’t C Me” sign.

Big woo as walking leather handbag Ric Flair walks to the ring. His entrance is cut short as MVP dives out of the ring to jaw off to Flair. Flair has been drafted to SmackDown at the grand old age of 58. Oy vey.

WWE United States Championship match: Montel Vontavious Porter (c) vs. Ric Flair.

Bell rings and MVP jaws off to Flair before the two lock up. MVP gets Flair in a corner, shouts shit in his face and the two argue before Flair woos and gives MVP a slap. Flair struts in the centre of the ring, MVP takes his time on the outside before rolling back in. The two bucks shout at each other and taunt. Flair gets cheers and MVP gets booed. Flair gets MVP into a leg lock and there’s a lovely wee rest hold. MVP gets to the ropes and Flair attempts a leg snap. Rake of the eyes and Flair is lifted onto the apron before being booted off. The champ goes out, picks up Flair and hammers his head off the apron. Pin in the ring followed by another and some punches before another pin and rest hold. Flair has bladed.

Flair gets to the ropes to break the hold and MVP stomps him. Flair is in the corner, takes some shots but survives. Some Flair chops and punches before a big back drop from MVP. He checks his chest and zips back up his top. Yeo. Rest hold city over here. A lone fan in the crowd woos. Flair fights back and knocks the champ back. Lovely fireman’s carry into gorilla press and a pin but still no win. The announcers talk about other champs and how they would feel about MVP. Flair hits a jawbreaker and slaps MVP on the ropes. Dodgy botched choke into backdrop and Flair chops away at MVP, runs the ropes and hits the high elbow. Back body drop and Flair is still in control, going for the ten punch in the corner but only getting five before MVP escapes.

MVP goes for another boot in the corner but misses. Flair attacks the knee, struts and attacks the knee again. Figure Four is locked in and MVP is reaching for the ropes before reaching it easily. Flair takes a thumb to the eye, hits the Playmaker for the win.

MVP has pinned Ric Flair and retains the WWE United States Championship in 8:43.

2017 comments:

Nice of them to unwrap Flair and feed him the Lazarus Solution to resurrect him once again.

2007 comments:

Did we really think Flair could ever win?

Grade: C.

Maggle tells us that Flair was in control. We see the ref pull Flair away – not DQing him like they did to Umaga – and MVP leaves, still the champ.

Backstage, Todd Grisham speaks to John Cena, who hits Todd and gives the big thumbs up to the camera. Edge appears and the pair waste time talking about the failed Vince McMahon Whodunnit. Cena tells Edge that he’s too soft to kill Vince. Edge basically implicates himself and the FBI guys appears to ask Edge some serious questions about a death that never actually happens.

By the side of the crowd is Rick Martel and Tony Garea, who were Tag Team champs back in the day. A different tag team, of course, to the World Tag Team Champions earlier… Confused much?

Deuce ‘n Domino come out, all shoo-bopping and doo-wopping with Cherry on her roller blades. I like this gimmick. It’s silly. Deuce lifts up Cherry and walks her three steps. They won the tag team belts from Paul London and Brian Kendrick. Deuce and Domino make fun of Martel and Garea, saying that the place stinks and that they thought the old champs were dead. Stay classy.

Sgt. Slaughter’s music hits and out he rocks, saluting to everyone, pointing and shouting. Then out comes legit murderer, Jimmy Snuka. This is the second match in a row with ancient wrestlers fighting new wrestlers. Cunt JBL talks about calling Ron Simmons and starting up the APA. Cole tries to be his friend. JBL turns him down.

Tag Team Match for the World Tag Team Championship: Deuce ‘n Domino (c) (w/ Cherry) vs. Sgt. Slaughter and Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka.

Deuce starts off and Cole tells us that it’s a bit odd that Snuka and Slaughter are tagging together as they feuded back in the day. Botched running of the ropes and jumping as Domino jumps too early and lands on Snuka’s neck. He hits Domino a bunch and tags in Slaughter, who hits a pump-handle gutbuster and snapmare for a pin. Big fail. Slaughter tosses Domino about and gives him a back body drop. Another pin. Another fail.

Slaughter hits the Cobra Clutch and finds the rope pretty quickly. Big elbow shots and Domino takes a big old clothesline. Another Cobra Clutch and Deuce walks back. Deuce hits Slaughter, why he doesn’t tag in is beyond me. Finally, he does and a ref distraction causes the choke from Domino. Domino tags Deuce in.

Straight-up Shoot Fact: Deuce is, of course, the son of Jimmy Snuka.

Deuce is beating on Slaughter, looks at his dad, goes to the top rope, hits a taunt on Superfly, does a big splash but fails. Slaughter goes for the tepid tag and the dad whups his son for a while. Snuka pins his son and Domino jumps in to break it up. Slaughter pulls him out and Superfly hits his son with a ribbreaker. He goes to the top rope and Cole fucks up the naming of the splash. Domino fails to knock him off – probably a botch – and Snuka hits the splash, rolls through and Deuce gets the pin.

Deuce has pinned Superfly Jimmy Snuka to retain the WWE Tag Team Championship in 6:34.

2017 comments:

Jesus, boys, at least do a bit of training before getting into the ring.

2007 comments:

Did we really think that Deuce ‘n Domino won by accident?

Grade: C.

The heel champs beat on the losers and Martel and Garea run in to save them. Big cheer as the winners run off. Then Superfly’s music hits as the old men are awkward mid-ring. Replays of the “win” and subsequent beat-down.

Coming up next, it’s the last chance match for the World Heavyweight Championship, Edge vs. Batista. Replays of their last few matches and we’re all very impressed with Edge’s thong.

Cole talks about Harley Race, an eight-time NWA champion and King of the Ring winner.

The champ, Edge comes out first once again. Because why wouldn’t he? Edge lists his belt for the farty pyro. He is called the “Ultimate Opportunist”, which is not really true, is it? If it were, he’d be taking every opportunity he could, including DQing himself in order to retain quickly.

Batista rocks out with his new haircut, hits his gatling gun pyro and strolls to the ring, rocking on his toes. Cole tells us that he asked Batista, “What are you gonna do tonight? It’s your last chance,” which is almost as stupid as when he asked Austin, “Are you ready to enter hell?” back in 2001, the fucking ghoul.

Batista rolls out, chases Edge off and hugs Harley Race. Real babyface.

Edge kisses the belt and the bell is rung.

Last Chance Match for the World Heavyweight Championship: Edge (c) vs. Batista.

Batista cannot wait to get his hands on Edge, going for his legs almost instantly. The pair hammer on each other and Batista hits the pin pretty early on but fails to keep him down. A wee rest hold from the two men and Batista stalks his enemy, constantly holding onto rest holds. Edge fights back and gets the Animal in the corner, but is limping from the damage pretty early on. Lovely Bossman Slam from Batista followed by a pin that fails. Annoying whistling person in the crowd. Batista gets thrown out of the ring and lies there for a while. Edge rocks out, hitting the axe-handle-nothing from the apron. Batista lifts Edge up but he escapes and reverses it into a lovely push into the steel ring post.

Batista reenters the ring and Edge is on him, hammering him on the back of the neck. Edge runs Batista’s shoulder into the steel post and we stand around for a while. Very slow pace here. Batista goes to the apron and gets hit with a baseball slide. Edge hot-dogs and grandstands for the crowd as Batista really sells the baseball slide. Batista rocks back into the ring and he have… armbar city. Both men are either gassed or purposely bringing the pace down. I can’t wee why. Batista hits an arm drag, is thrown – once again – into the corner, shoulder first, and follows it up with a short, sharp tug. Batista falls back, has trouble getting to his feet and does so, fighting back before a drop-toe-hold moves straight into an armbar. Armbar city.

Batista lifts Edge into a fireman’s carry into a Samoan Drop but Edge holds on, holding as tight as he can. Batista battles to his feet, punches Edge, lifts him into the corner and gets a boot to the face for his effort. Batista’s veins are all twisted and gross. Edge drives at Batista, but the Animal hits a murderous clothesline. Ten count starts.

Both men are up and Batista hits a looooovely back body drop. It is beautiful. Batista then hits a swinging Rock Bottom on Edge but fails to hit the pinfall. He sets up the Batista Bomb but Edge escapes and hits the DDT. Edge is amazed that it means nothing. He rocks out, grabs his belt and the ref shouts at him. Roll-up from Batista. Roll-up from Edge. Dominator attempt by Batista, Edge-O-Matic from Edge. Both men are down, both men are up and a spear from Batista knocks the champ down. Edge whups his arm right up to hit the Animal with a low blow.

Edge has disqualified himself by an illegal action. Batista is the winner of this match but Edge still retains World Heavyweight Championship in… 16:50?

Something fucky’s going on here. Same thing happened ten years ago at In Your House 14: Revenge of the ‘Taker with Owen Hart and British Bulldog being illegally pinned by the Legion of Doom.

Teddy Long rocks out and restarts the match. He adds the stipulation that a further DQ will cause Edge to lose his championship. Edge bounces back in and the bell goes despite the fact that Batista is not ready. Edge prepares for the Spear, hits it and almost gets the pin! Almost! Edge runs out, gets a chair, remembers that it will mean he loses and rolls in only for Batista to attempt the Batista Bomb and throw Edge over the top rope. Batista gets thrown into the steel steps and then hits Edge with the Batista Bomb. However, he took so long that Batista gets counted out.

Batista has gotten himself counted out. Edge is the winner of this match and retains World Heavyweight Championship in 16:50.

2017 comments:

Have a screwy ending, only to restart the match… and have another screwy ending. Nice, guys. Very nice.

2007 comments:

Disappointed.

Grade: C.

No good storyline in this match. Batista has lost his chance to win the championship. He’s furious. He picks up the champ and hits a second Batista Bomb, his music plays and he leaves the ring. Batista punches the ring a bunch of times and the replays of his loss play. Distraught, he walks up the tron.

Cut to JR and Jerry, who talk about Fabulous Moolah, the madam. They have a wee laugh and show the original screwjob where Moolah was the “Spider Lady”, completely revising history, the bastards.

Melina appears with her paparazzi, smiling as she rocks down and splits to enter the ring. Bless her, she tries awful hard.

Candice Michelle appears, slapping hands and wearing… a garter belt to hold up her trousers? Weird. So weird.

WWE Women’s Championship: Melina (c) vs. Candice Michelle.

Right, everyone, take a knee. This is the piss break match, I guess.

Melina raises her hand for a test of strength, kicks Candice right between the legs and is thrown into the corner, hitting Melina with a head-scissors submission, moving into a tarantula before being kicked outside. Melina sits on the apron and tries a head scissors of her own, rolls into the ring and attempts a pin. Melina pops Candice into the corner, hits the double knees and gets another head-scissors on her before attempting a takedown. The announcers call Melina a “playboy wannabe”, reducing her to a glamour model. Bow and arrow submission followed by a pin attempt. Melina goes over the top rope and Candice hits a weak powerslam, shakes her hips and hits an elbow. Pin attempt and fail.

Bulldog by Candice and another pin attempt. Melina hits a Neckbreaker and fails again on the pin. Both women run the ropes and Candice wins by a pin after an embarrassing roundhouse kick. Her top also falls down.

Candice Michelle has pinned Melina to win the WWE Women’s Championship in 4:07.

2017 comments:

Embarrassing.

2007 comments:

She’s crying because she knows how shit it is.

Grade: Not a match.

Awful, just awful. Women wrestlers deserve better than this.

Cut to a promo for… WrestleMania? Oh, on DVD. Three discs, or so I’m told. Five hours of extras. Four hours of actual WrassleMania. Cunt Trump gets top billing.

Justin Roberts introduces Cunt JBL, who used to be a WWE Champ. He gets the grip to hand a piece of paper to Roberts and says that he must read from the paper, exactly. It wanks JBL off for a while. Fuck JBL.

Promo for the Five-Pack Challenge, which JR says is… “So unique.” It’s not. We see Mick, Booker, Cena, Randy and Bobbo Lasher as champions as they say what it means to be a champion. The five men tell the camera who they are. We see their “best moments”, which involves mostly Mankind.

Justin Roberts describes the chaos that will unfold: all five men will fight and the first to get a pinfall or submission will win. No eliminations.

Bobbo Lasher comes out first with his golden shower.

Micker Foley comes out next, facing it up.

Booker comes out with Queen Sharmell, the best queen. He has an odd animal fur cloak on. Weird dude. JR calls Sharmell beautiful. She is, she’s great looking. Long bloody entrance, mind.

Then Randy comes down with his great entrance theme tune, taking half an hour to get to the ring, jogging for a bit like the smelly jobber that he is. He hits the legend killer pose mid-ring and that’s him.

Cena keeps us waiting, you know, all four men await him and the crowd goes ballistic the second that his music hits.

Five-Pack Challenge for the WWE Championship: John Cena (c) vs. Bobby Lashley vs. Mick Foley vs. King Booker (with Queen Sharmell) vs. Randy Orton.

All five lads are in the ring, finally, and the match begins. Booker leaves and Sharmell gives him a lovely massage. Cena bops Randy, who gets a back-body drop from Lasher and is tossed over the rope by Mick. Booker comes in, tosses Cena out and hammers Lasher. Lashley hits a thunderous clothesline and tosses him out, hitting a very dangerous looking suicide dive onto all four men, picks up Booker and rolls him back in. Mid-ring, Lasher hits the Rack Attack and Cena breaks up the pin to big boos. Both big men face off and trade punches mid-ring. Lasher hits a great spinebuster and both men roll to the outside. Cena takes a bomp to the head from the steel steps and Lasher begins to prepare an announcer’s table for a bump.

Randy and Foley interrupts it as Booker and Foley fight by ringside. All the other men have a wee lie down, waiting for their own personal spot. Foley takes a real bad looking steel ring step bump and it’s Randy and Lasher’s turn to fight. Lasher counters an RKO, walks straight into an FU and is clobbered through the ECW announce table. Booker and Cena have a scrap in the ring mit Flair chops. Booker cracks Cena in the face with a boot and some lovely knees and Irish whip. Cena fights back and clobbers Booker before taking a Scissors kick to the back of the neck. Randy breaks up the pin and gets a punch to the face before Cena – no selling the Scissors kick – knocks him out, hits the sit-out powerbomb, attempts a Five Knuckle Shuffle but eats an RKO. Randy attempts the pin and Foley breaks it up, cracking Orton with elbows and a knee to the head before turning on Booker for a boot and hitting the double underhook DDT.

Foley whups Mr. Socko out of his jocks, eats a superkick from Booker and both he and Randy fall with a double clothesline. Foley throws the sock into the crowd and takes a steel chair into the ring. Cactus bops Bobby with the chair followed by Booker. Cena gets to his feet and eats a chair before Randy stops the carnage. The Viper stalks Foley, gives him the punt kick. And Cena gets ready for the FU with Booker, tosses him out and hits Mick with one instead for the pin.

John Cena has pinned Mick Foley to retain the WWE Championship in 18:08.

2017 comments:

Spotfest, but a fun spotfest.

2007 comments:

Mick was in it. Match of the Year.

Grade: A.

The DVD I was watching had the match at maybe 10 minutes, they must have cut out some rest holds. Cena celebrates and the WWE moves into a new and terrifying era.

The Go Home Stats.

Man of the Matches: No big stand-out winners but I’d say the final match was fast-paced and fun and put the onus on John Cena’s shoulders.

Woman of the Matches: Am I to choose between Melina, Candice Michelle and Sharmell? I choose Sharmell.

Montel Vontavious Porter Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence: John Cena

Best Spot: The parade of specials at the end of the Five-pack challenge.

Hatches: Jimmy Superfly Snuka.

Matches: Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch retain their World Tag Team Championship; Chavo Guerrero retains his WWE Cruiserweight Championship; Santino Marella retains his WWE Intercontinental Championship; Montel Vontavious Porter retains his WWE United States Championship; Deuce ‘n Domino retain their WWE Tag Team Championship; Edge retains his World Heavyweight Championship belt; Candice Michelle has the only title change of the evening, winning the WWE Women’s Championship from Melina for her first reign; and Cena retains his WWE Championship.

Dispatches: We say goodbye to everyone: Batista, Bobby Lashley, Booker T, Candice Michelle, Carlito, Chavo Guerrero, Cherry, CM Punk, Deuce, Domino, Edge, Jeff and Matt Hardy, Jimmy Superfly Snuka, Jimmy Wang Yang, John Cena, Johnny Nitro, Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch, Mick Foley, Melina, MVP, Randy Orton, Ric Flair, Santino Marella, Sgt. Slaughter, Sharmell, Super Crazy and Umaga.

On The Card Hall Of Fame

Every “Big Four” PPV (Wrestlemania, Summerslam, Survivor Series, Royal Rumble) I will choose a man and woman to be inducted into the hall of fame. I have done another one today because this is the final PPV in the Ruthless Aggression section of this blog. A man and woman must have been named either a Man of the Matches or Woman of the Matches in the previous months since the last “Big Four” PPV (since WrestleMania 23). Once a man or woman is inducted, they may not be inducted again but can still win Man of the Matches or Woman of the Matches. Through this, we can course the dizzying highs and savage lows of the wrestling landscape throughout the years. If no one new has been given the title of Man or Woman of the Matches, then a candidate will be chosen from the highest-rated matches since the last “Big Four” PPV – WrassleMania 23. If no one is to be found there, then we go to the next highest-rated matches and so on. If we (unlikely) get to the bottom of the pile, then the Hall of Fame will remain empty to show the excellent calibre of the wrestlers and shallow roster.

Previous Men of the Matches: Shawn Michaels (Summerslam 06), [REDACTED] Benoit (Survivor Series ’06), Joey Mercury (Royal Rumble 07), Stone Cold Steve Austin (WrestleMania 23).

Nominated for Man of the Matches: John Cena, Randy Orton, Edge and Shawn Michaels (Backlash 07), CM Punk and Elijah (Judgment Day 07), Batista and Edge (One Night Stand 07), John Cena (Vengeance: Night of Champions 07).

The Winner and Entrant to the Hall of Fame is… CM Punk and Elijah Burke!

Previous Women of the Matches: Queen Sharmell (Summerslam 06), Trish Stratus (Survivor Series 06), Victoria (Royal Rumble 07), N/A (WrestleMania 23).

Nominated for Woman of the Matches: Mickie James (Backlash 07), N/A (Judgement Day 07), N/A (One Night Stand 07), Queen Sharmell (Vengeance: Night of Champions

The Winner and Entrant to the Hall of Fame is… Mickie James because Queen Sharmell cannot win twice!

In Memoriam

Each WrestleMania (and the final PPV in this case), I will go through the people who we have seen wrassle and lament for their passing. This list is a bit shorter due to the fact that the shows have been so recent.

  • Andrew James Robert Patrick Martin AKA Test, March 17 1975 – March 13 2009; accidental overdose of oxycodone.
  • Christopher Michael Benoit, May 21 1967 – June 29 2009; hanging.
  • Edward Smith Fatu AKA Umaga, March 28 1973 – December 4 2009; heart attack caused by acute toxicity.
  • Harry Fujiwara AKA Mr. Fuji, May 4 1934 – August 28 2016; old age. Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2007 by Don “The Rock” Muraco.
  • James Reiher Snuka AKA Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka, May 18 1943 – January 15 2017; unidentified terminal illness. Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1996 by Don Muraco, though his profile is no longer available due to his alleged murder of Nancy Argentino in 1983.
  • Jonathan “Jon” Rechner AKA Balls Mahoney, April 11 1972 – April 12 2016; heart attack.
  • Lance Kurtis McNaught AKA Lance Cade, March 2 1981 – August 13 2010; heart failure caused by intoxication from mixed drugs.
  • Nelson Lee Frazier Jr AKA Viscera AKA Mabel AKA Big Daddy V, February 14 1971 – February 18 2014; heart attack.
  • Roderick George Toombs AKA Rowdy Roddy Piper, April 17 1954 – July 31 2015; cardiopulmonary arrest caused by hypertension. Inducted into the Hall of Fame by Ric Flair in 2005.
  • Virgil Riley Runnels Jr AKA Dusty Rhodes, October 12 1945 – June 11 2015; a bad fall. Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2007 by his sons, Cody (Stardust) and Dustin (Goldust).

Closing Statements: I think that it’s only fair that I explain why I have decided to end this section of the blog at this PPV and it will come as no surprise that it is because of Chris Benoit. At the time of his death, professional wrestling had been an interest that had dwindled for me to a once-a-month event, more frequently if a match on Raw or Smackdown was highly gimmicked or was heard to be amazing. The only thing keeping me watching was – as I’m sure other fans were – the anticipation that if I stopped watching, I would somehow miss something amazing. Chris Benoit’s murder/suicide (although completely unrelated to storyline professional wrestling) stopped me watching for a while. As the details about the weekend of murders came to light, I realised that I could not watch a sport that allowed its employees to take such a punishment that would cause them to have brains in such disrepair that they could be brought to kill their son and wife. I still sometimes feel conflicted about it. The WWE, in fairness to them, took precautions to ensure that their employees are healthier today than they were back then. I feel that the wrestling now is better than it was in 2007 and even during the Attitude Era. Now, the wrestling is the best in the world and that is because the wrestlers are healthier and not taking chair shots every night. It’s a shame three people had to die for that to happen.

Ruthless Aggression #19. One Night Stand (June 3, 2007) Part 2

Previously on On the Card: Good old Hardys. Never miss a ladder match. Miss a lot of spots, though.

Cut backstage to Khali cutting a rambling promo on Cena in Punjabi. His translator gives his promo in English. It’s nothing to write home about.

Cut to the ring where Tony Chimel is introducing the Lumberjack Match, where twelve lads stand outside the ring and wait until someone falls out and they push them back in. [REDACTED] Benoit arrives, looking super pissed off that he is not competing. Behind him is Valentine Venis, Santino Marella, Balls Mahoney, Steven Richards, The Miz, Kevin Vampire Thorn, Chris Masters, Johnny Nitro, Chavo Guerrero, Kenny Dykstra mit dead fox and Carlito. There is little craic from them. Stevie Richards jumps on Balls’ back.

Somebody gon’ get they ass kicked! It’s Mark Henry! He’s out, covered in butter or whatever. The announcers sell the fact that Mark Henry is the World’s Strongest Man. This is before Game of Thrones, I suppose.

Big fiery pyro and Kane rocks out, popping into the ring and squaring up to Henry after hitting the turnbuckle pyro.

Lumberjack Match: Mark Henry vs. Kane.

This is the first match of the card that allows pinfall or submission, so you know it’s going to be great. Kane and Henry circle each other and Henry tosses him out. The Lumberjacks scatter, no way are they going near the Devil’s Favourite Demon. Big slow, methodical movement as Henry is tossed out. The Lumberjacks surround him and get tossed away easily. Henry rolls back in and he and Kane beat each other in the corner. Henry rolls out and Kane goes with him. The Lumberjacks are keeping their distance as Henry tosses him into the ringpost. Henry rolls into the ring and the Lumberjacks pick up Kane and allow him to enter. Henry continues to attack Kane’s back with double axe-handle nothings and club-like punches. Kane fights back with his great big punches and Henry retaliates with a powerslam. First pinfall attempt and a fail.

Kane headbutts out man Henry and gets knocked down for his effort. Both men are really selling the fact that they are glass cannons here. Both attacks do lots of damage. The fear is not that either men are impervious, more that regardless of their defence, their attack is brutal. Kane attempts a Rock Bottom but his back is sore. Val Venis is hammering out a tune on the ring, really reacting to everything in the ring. Cunt JBL gives off because he doesn’t like fun. Big rest hold city mid-ring as Mark hugs Kane. Kane falls to the floor and pulls Henry out. Kane goes top-rope, jumps and hits a bowling ball spot as the lads go sprawling everywhere. Chavo and Kenny help Kane back into the ring and two monsters punch each other for a while. Miz and Stevie Richards shout at each other as Kane goes to the top rope again, knocking Mark down, hitting a lovely chokeslam but two lumberjacks jump in before the pin can be applied.

Kane one-hand-chokeslams Kenny and Mark gives Kane another bear hug. Kane is hurt, he’s passing out. The ref is imploring him to quit, but he’s not giving up. The ref stops the match.

The match has finished due to ref stoppage. Mark Henry is the default winner in 9:07.

2017 comments:

Meh. It’s a nice way to get both men over as powerful without it being a stalemate but to end with a bearhug? I mean, come on, guys.

2007 comments:

Do you think that Kane and Henry are considered… bears?

Grade: C.

Not a good bunch of matches so far, if I’m honest. Replays of the match.

Cut to Charlie Haas and Shelton Benjamin who are complaining about the loss of the match. Shelton and Jeff square off. Punches are thrown. People break it up. It’s a real to-do, I tell you what.

Cut to Bobbo Lasher and McMahon Street Fight promo. Back in Wrasslemania, Vince got his head shaved by Cunt President Donald Trump and Stone Cold. Vince blamed Bobbo and took his ECW championship, which was bound to hurt him badly. Bobby beat a handicap match but Vince refused to give his championship up and so another rematch was called. Vince didn’t actually want one, but Shane protected his father’s ego by accepting. Makes little sense… unless Shane is trying to screw over Vince… again.

Justin Roberts introduces the Street Fight and its lack of disqualifications… which all matches so far have had. AND THEN GOD DAMMIT WWE YOU BRING OUT THE CHAMP FIRST AGAIN.

Vince rocks out with Shane and Umaga. Sure why not? It is his birthday. It is not his birthday. They’re talking about it being a three-on-one handicap match and Umaga being the “Samoan Bulldozer”. I’ve no real fear of that because Umaga has lost his winning streak. He’s pathetic now.

Bobby’s music hits and there is a decent pop for Roidy Lasher. He hits his pyro, covers himself in golden sparks and walks to the ring, hitting hit massive jump and more turnbuckle pyro.

Street Fight for the ECW World Championship: Vince McMahon (c) (with Umaga and Shane McMahon) vs. Bobby Lashley.

Shane and Vince in the ring, Bobby runs to the ropes, does a suicide dive, botches by holding onto the rope and barely grazes Umaha, who sells like death. Shane is hammering on Bobby, who knocks him down and tosses him out onto Umaga. Bobby and Vince are alone and the crowd goes wild as he rains punches on Vince. Shane rocks in, is tossed out, Umaga comes in and takes over for a second, but is thrown into a corner. Shane comes in with a chair, Lashley gets rid of him, tosses the chair and is about to hit Vince with a Dominator when Shane and Umaga take over, hitting Lasher with a DDT on the chair.

It’s three on one now and the first few minutes are forgotten as the pace slows, the men beat up Bobbo and he attempts to build up some babyface fire. Double team Irish whip into Vince, who kicks him in the balls. The announcers make it clear that something might happen on the table by moving back and saying, “uh oh!” Vince takes… a hammer? Something from a dude by the side of the ring. It’s a bell hammer, apparently. He doesn’t hit Lasher with it, just chokes him with it. Vince then chokes Lasher with a wire. We are halfway through the match here, not one pin attempt, neither announcer is making that a big deal. Umaga hits a lovely Samoan drop and a pin attempt is finally made but fails.

Vince hits a sad, sad spear on Lasher but gets nothing from the pinfall. Why he doesn’t get Umaga and Shane to hold Bobbo down during a pin is beyond me. Crowd is dead. Bobbo is held down by the McMahons and Umaga goes for the splash. Bobbo, at the last second, does a sit-up, Vince gets squashed and it’s time to go home. Both Shane and Umaga are tossed out. Bobbo gets the chair, cracks Vince with it and hammers on his back for a while. The announcers say that this is legal and a hell of a lot of fun to watch. Bobbo hits the Dominator, goes for the three but Umaga drags him out before he can get the pin.

Outside, Bobbo gets a chair after beating Umaga, but is knocked down. Umaga jumps to the floor from the apron and the announcer’s table is finally destroyed. Lashley is draped over the table, Shane goes to the corner and hits a lovely elbow that elicts, “Holy shit!” chants from the crowd. Bobby is thrown into the ring and a pin attempt is made and failed. Umaga rocks in to beat on Lasher in the corner. He rears back to hit the Rikishi arse-bump in the corner and Shane takes over with a trashcan, hoping to hit a Coast-to-Coast. No selling there from the younger McMahon. Bobby rolls out of the way at the last second, Umaga gets hit with the trashcan and Bobby gets his revenge with a spear once to Shane and then to Vince for the pin.

Bobby Lashley has pinned Vince McMahon to win the ECW World Championship in 12:23.

2017 comments:

A nice wee revenge match for the Lasher. Not amazing, but plays to the strengths of each other competitors and makes Lasher look really strong.

2007 comments:

I never get sick of seeing the McMahons lose.

Grade: B.

Lashley spears Vince again in the middle of his music. Replays shown and Bobbo goes to the back with his belt.

Cut to Maria and Santino chatting in Italian. They get interrupted by Todd who reminds Maria that Candice Michelle and Melina are having a pudding match. Maria spouts gibberish for a while. She doesn’t answer the question. Candice Michelle turns up and hits her three lines. She asks for a kiss for good luck and Maria gives her one. Santino says he loves America and Ron Simmons says, “Damn”. You couldn’t make this shit up.

Cut to the “pudding”, which seems to be filmed from a hoody.

Candice Michelle comes out and some very embarrassed fans hold up some very sad signs.

Melina’s music hits and out she comes. Both women are in bikinis. Melina even has goggles. JR tries to shill the next PPV. Both women stand awkwardly. This is going to be a long segment.

Pudding Match: Candice Michelle vs. Melina.

Of course, this match is not for the Women’s Championship, which makes it a waste of goddamn time even more than it was before I knew the title wasn’t on the line. Candice puts one foot in the pudding, grabs Melina and tosses her in. The women rock in the pudding for a while, slide out and get told to get back in. Candice slips. Sexy pin on the outside. JR and Jerry wonder about the rules of the pudding match. Double axe-handle nothing. The guys are finding it hard to realise who is who. The crowd chant for, “Boring.” There’s a DDT into the pudding. Jerry puts the sexiness of the women over. Candice drowns Melina and she taps out, well, slaps the pudding.

Melina has tapped out or suffered drowning in the pudding. Candice Michelle wins in 2:55.

2017 comments:

I would normally complain about this because women’s wrestling etc. but this match doesn’t pretend to be anything more than nonsense, so, in way, it’s the most successful match on the card.

2007 comments:

I wonder is it pudding.

Grade: Nooooope.

Maria turns up. Let’s see what happens.

She congratulates Candice on her win, Melina tosses pudding and Maria dives in. Then the ref is dragged in. Melina escapes and someone’s music plays as the faces hug.

On the Card will return on June 17 2017 with the third and final part of One Night Stand 2007.

Ruthless Aggression #18. Judgment Day (May 20, 2007) Part 1

On the Card: Ruthless Aggression #18 Judgement Day – May 19, 2007

The Ruthless Aggression Era was a time when the WWE roster was so huge and so varied that they had no way of continuing storylines each week on their two main shows – RAW and Smackdown – and so they created the draft where wrestlers and announcers would be drafted onto either one of the two shows. Smackdown wrestlers would not (usually) be able to appear on Raw or interact with Raw wrestlers and vice versa.

Ten years ago, on May 19, 2007, Judgement Day 2007 aired. It was a WWE PPV, as WWE had dropped Brand-named PPVs after No Way Out in February and was spelled “Judgment” without an E, though my MS Word will continue to autocorrect it to “Judgement” because I am living in Scotland and we do not believe in superfluous letters here. Personally, the PPV came at a time where I had grown weary with professional wrestling, confused by the sheer number of wrestlers and unwilling to spend so much time per week watching hours of footage and trawling through shows, replays, promos and matches. I simply watched the PPVs. Over the next few weeks, I will review this PPV from the perspectives of a fan looking back at it after a decade as well as my original thoughts as a younger man watching it at the time.

WWE Judgement Day 2007

Still no tagline but by Christ, what a poster. Kane, standing on a stairway, surrounded by flames while hands – some skeletal, some still clinging onto flesh – reach up from the fire to grab at him. He also looks super ripped. Great. What I love about these covers is that they have that Wolverine Publicity trope where they fire on wrestlers onto the covers despite them not being that important to the actual PPV. Case in point: Kane does not actually appear in this PPV… unless you were there for the actual live show. Then you would see him… in the dark match at the beginning versus William Regal. Yeah.

Once again, this PPV is attempting to make Khali (a non-wrestler who hasn’t been in the ring in months) look like a credible threat. The promo package begins with him, moves into the Edge vs. Batista, rematch of Bobby Lashley vs. Umaga, Vince and Shane followed by Khali hitting people. He hits all the people and they all take the hits until Jjjjjjjjahn Cena fights back because he’s tip-top.

Then there’s some bad space CGI for some reason. WWE is in space? Is the Day of Judgement about a meteor? It don’t matter none because the farty pyro tells us that we are live in the Scottrade Centre in St. Louis, Missouri, home of Randal Keith Orton and 10,500 other lads who turned up to see this PPV happen. There are 242,000 people watching in at home, a huge dip from the 252,000 the year before (funnily enough, we would see the same number for Judgement Day 2008) but a big rise from the 194,000 that tuned in for Backlash a month ago. It should have been called Backlashley. Oh well, you live and learn.

Our announcers are Jumpin’ Jim Ross, Jerry “The King” Lawler, Joey Styles, Tazz, Maggle Cole and Cunt JBL, who has a face on him like he just ate some shite.

(Note: Before the PPV began, there was a dark match that featured Kane and William Regal. What? Why? Once again, the depth of your roster, boys, fair play.)

Big “Wooo!” as our boy Ric Flair rocks down to the ring with his face all leathered and haggard. Ric Flair is in your curtain jerker. By Christ, it’s an odd time when the only two-time Hall of Famer in WWE history, the sixteen-time champion, is on first. I suppose he needs his sleep.

Then Carlito appears and rocks in and throws his apple at Flair. And almost hits him. Jim Ross tuts at this, saying, “This just shows Carlito’s total lack of disrespect.”

Singles match: Ric Flair vs. Carlito.

I’ve changed up the titles of the matches. Putting champion first or in order of appearance.

Big chops in the corner from Flair and has him on the ropes. Lovely Irish Whip countered into a Sunset flip but Naitch drops to his knees, denying an Aloha Arn and beats on the Carribean. Big chops and Carlito rocks out of the ring. Flair goes to the corner to hit Carlito on the apron but Carlito escapes, the rascal. Carlito attacks Flair’s arm and hand. Ross points out that Flair’s right arm is stronger than his left. Carlito grounds Flair with a hammerlock.

JR and King talk about Flair taking lads underneath his wing to teach them about the game and how Carlito squandered that opportunity. In the corner, Naitch whips at Carlito but he escapes. More attacks on Flair’s left arm on the apron. Big toss into the turnbuckle and Flair is hurt. Pin attempt but there is barely a one. Crowd chant “Let’s go, Flair!” but Flair does not go whatsoever. Carlito wraps Flair’s arm around the turnbuckle twice followed by a lovely missile dropkick. Another cover, another kickout. Sign in the crowd: Umaga ate my homework.

Flair fights back, gives Carlito a slap or two but the younger man takes over again and hits another dropkick and another failed pin. Crowd – specifically someone behind the announcers – roar “Nature boy!” over and over. It’s very loud. Jerry talks about Torrie Wilson, for some reason. He brings it back to the match by saying that Carlito did not want to be distracted by either Wilson or Flair but then follows it up with, “Torrie can distract me any time!” Nyuk, nyuk, nyuk.

Big claps from the crowd as Flair gets out of an armbar and takes over, hitting a lovely arm drag but is knocked back by Carlito. Armbar city over here. Flair gets to his feet and is in a great amount of pain, but is able to toss Carlito with an armbar again. Another dropkick, another pin attempt but JR points out that the first pins were one-counts, this was a two-count and “one more count bears a beaten man.” Christ, JR, you’re just the best.

Big chops from Flair and Carlito is on the floor. It’s a slobberknocker, an official slobberknocker. Flair takes a back-body drop. JR bigs up Flair’s chops, saying that he would rather take any move than a single Flair chop. Big words. Armbar city again here. Some stomps and more armbars wherein Flair almost gets pinned. Carlito roars something, which Jerry understands. JR: “You speak Spanish now?” Jerry: “Profanely. And profoundly.”

Flair hits back with some big right-hands and a shitty snapmare. Flair has Carlito on the ropes, no-sells a punch, chops Carlito to the ground, gives him a back-body drop and goes for Carlito’s leg. Carlito hits a thumb right to Flair’s eyes, attempts a backstabber, fails and the crowd goes wild as Flair works the legs of Carlito before hitting the Figure Four leglock, getting the tap-out victory.

Ric Flair has submitted Carlito to win the match in 15:34.

2017 comments:

Good opener, I suppose, nice to see Flair once again, though at fifteen minutes, it overstayed its welcome by about five minutes.

2007 comments:

Is Ric Flair ever going to retire?

Grade: B.

Ric is done. Absolutely wrecked. Sign Guy in the crowd has a massive sign that he puts over his head saying, “Beat That Hairball!” He has another, which is a picture of a man’s lower body, which he constantly low-blows with the caption, “Ric Flair Training.”

Cut to Shawn Michaels backstage with Todd as they show footage of Shawn beating Edge on RAW. But then Randy came out, punt-kicked Shawn, stood over him and had his face on. Shawn calls Todd by his full name, Todd Grisham, and just as Shawn is about to speak, Randy comes in and tosses him into the background. Shawn needs help.

Cut to a promo for the Bobbo Lasher match versus Shane, Vince and Umaga, showing how Vince stole the belt by letting the others beat up Lasher and pinning him to win the ECW championship. Lasher gets his rematch at Judgment day, but it will once again be a handicap match. Lasher is not allowed to touch Shane, Vince or Umaga unless physically provoked… so he beats on Jonathan Coachman instead. Both Umaga and Shane provoke him, so they get a paddlin’.

Back in the ring, here comes the money! Dollah dollah! Shane O Mac comes to the ring, jogging like the jobber he is. Sign Guy has “ECW: Extremely un-Cool White guy” sign with a picture of Vince all up on it. Umaga comes does next, roaring and pulling at the rope. Vince comes down next, having a big swagger all on him as he rocks to the ring. Once again, the champ comes to the ring before the challenger. That’s nonsense.

Big “Bobby!” chant rises as his music hits and Lasher comes to the ring, roided up and standing in his own pyro. Lasher is angry. He jumps to the apron, big pyro hits.

Handicap match for the ECW World Championship: Mr. McMahon (c), Shane McMahon and Umaga vs. Bobby Lashley.

The bell goes and Lasher runs for Umaga, knocking him out of the ring. He punches Shane, beats on Vince and Shane gets tossed around like a ragdoll. Umaga tries to get to the apron but is knocked off. Bobby goes for Vince but Shane Pearl Harbours him. Lovely overhead suplex and Umaga is in , running at Bobby but Lasher moves out of the way, hits the spear, pins Shane and wins the championship.

Bobby Lashely has pinned Shane McMahon to win the ECW World Championship in 1:13.

2017 comments:

Thanks for the waste of ten minutes worth of promos and entrances for barely a minute of “wrestling”.

2007 comments:

I blinked. What happened?

Grade: F.

Tazz tells us that Bobby has exploded all over the McMahons. And the WWE just exploded all over paying customers.

Vince is ticked off. He walks from the ring, away from his son and Umaga. He slowly walks towards the ring but Umaga Pearl Harbours Lasher and gets his heat back with a Samoan Spike. Vince takes the ECW belt back, walks up the steps into the ring with a mic, congratulates Bobby but says that he did not win the belt as Bobby did not pin Vince. The crowd boos, the announcers shit on it and the heels leave with the belt. Devils.

Tazz calls him “ingenious”. What?

Recap of the match, almost in its entirety due to its brevity.

Backstage, a bowtie doctor is telling Shawn that he can’t wrassle. That’s it.

Back in the arena, CM Punk pre-Cult of Personality music hits and he comes to the ring, all wrapped up in bandages. He shouts, “It’s clobbering time!” to the crowd, because he is actually The Thing.

Elijah Burke rocks out, towel in hand, ready for the match to dab his sweating brow.

Singles Match: CM Punk vs. Elijah Burke.

Punk has his ribs taped. The crowd bay for him and Tazz checks it, like an idiot. The pair circle each other and lock up. Punk gets caught in a waistlock and kicks Burke away. Punk would later say that Burke is his least favourite opponent ever and would describe him as, “Absolutely the worst.” Let’s see how this plays out.

Punk gets Burke in a headlock and gets a punch to the rib for his effort. Joey says that Punk is giving “leg-kicks”, which he means as kicks to the leg rather than kicks with the leg. Punk in the corner with a rib shot and punch to the face that topples him. Punk gives him a lovely receipt to the back. Body slam and pin attempt. Neither men are wrestlers, more of a case of being strikers or, as the kids are want to say these days, strong-style specialists. Punk lands a lovely bodyslam and hits an exploder suplex that gets only a two-count.

The suplex is the first real wrestling move so far, followed by a lovely delayed vertical suplex where punk holds Burke aloft for about ten seconds. Very impressive. Burke fights back out of a chinlock and must be held back by the ref before he hurts Punky Magoo. Not very Extreme, is it, ECW? Punk hits a crossbody but fails to get the pin. The rascal.

Burke hammers Punk in the corner until the Chick Magnet gets a knee up. This is followed by a pathetic toss over the top rope. Shame upon the pair of you. Great shame. Punk slides underneath the rope, hits what Tazz calls a “sunset flip” even though no flips were involved at all. More of a sunset slide. Lovely headlock followed by hip toss reversals into a fireman’s carry and dropkick to send Burke to the outside. He looks about centre ring and hits a lovely suicide dive between the top and middle ropes. Great lad. Fair play. Pin attempt. Fail.

This is a lovely match so far. I can’t see why Punk would hate wrasslin’ Burke unless Punk is carrying him, which seems unlikely. Likely, Punk is just a bollocks. Burke reverses Punk’s moonsault attempt and beats on the ribs, holding Punk on the top rope and delivering a kick that could shatter bones right into Punk’s chest. Lovely leg scissors to Punk’s chest and Burke has his where he wants him. Punk fights back but gets a suplex followed by a backdrop and pin attempt. Something is happening offscreen and the crowd are chanting for JBL. He’s probably being a cunt and distracting them from the match.

More leg scissors from our boys and CM Punk escapes, beats on Burke, hits a lovely Irish whip, bit of a botch as both men kick. Cradle suplex into small package. Burke goes top rope, Punk hits him, gets ready for the superplex and hits it. My only complaint is that there are no flashbulbs anymore as phones nowadays have no need for flashes. Both men are up before the ten count and Punk hits a lovely clothesline followed by a baseball slide and enziguri onto Burke, going for the pin and Burke kicks out. Brilliant. Great match.

Bulldog attempt but Burke fights out. Burke tries the Elijah Express, misses, Punk attempts the GTS, fails, Burke hits the Elijah Experience but fails to get the pin. Burke pops punk up onto the turnbuckle and hits the Express. Punk falls into the tree of woe, but is released by the ref. Pin attempt and Punk escapes with a hand on the bottom rope, rolls away from the Elijah Experience and hits the GTS. Great match. Great pin.

CM Punk has pinned Elijah Burke to win the match in 16:50.

2017 comments:

Punk is one of those wrestlers who is beloved by fans despite being above average but being consistently above average in my estimation. This match reminds me why he’s one of the best in the business.

2007 comments:

This young whippersnapper CM Punk is going to be dead by the time he’s forty if he keeps up this caper.

Grade: A.

Hard to see why Punk would hate working with Burke as both men were complicit in a pretty great match. We see some lovely reversals of the two men kicking seven shades of shite out of one another as Punk ascends the ramp to the heavens.

On the Card will return on May 27 2017 with the second and final part of Judgment Day 2007.

Ruthless Aggression #17. Backlash (April 29, 2007) Part 2

Previously on On the Card: Brilliant women’s match. Fair play to the pair of them.

Backstage, another lovely-but-dopey woman (Maria) is introducing Edge. He makes fun of her chipper attitude. Edge is happy that he is the least-tired of the four competitors tonight. He mimes it. It’s great. Maria pulls paper from between her tits. Upon it is the immortal question: How did Edge win his first WWE title? He tells her that everyone knows the answer. He became Mr. Money in the Bank. He had John Cena beaten. Edge cashed in, speared Cena and won. Edge wonders aloud who would ask such a question. Maria points behind Edge. It’s Miiisssstaaaaaaaaah Kennnnneedy. Kennedy. He repeats what Edge says back to him and pats his briefcase. Thinly veiled threat there.

Back in the arena, it’s motherfucking Montel Vontavious Porter! Big fan now. I hated him but then I liked him again. It’s the WWE US Championship match and for the first time this night, the champ is entering last. About damn time.

[REDACTED] Benoit rocks out. Big pop for him, but very little charisma from the man himself. Roidy Magoo barrel-chest on him.

WWE United States Championship match: [REDACTED] Benoit (c) vs. Montel Vontavious Porter.

MVP has had nothing but good matches this past while and Benoit is Benoit. Interesting to note that all matches this evening are title matches, but that isn’t advertised by any of the announcers. You’d think they’d love to point that out.

Cunt JBL says, “You’d better call the Atlanta PD… because these two men are going to steal the show.” Great line, but both men do little in the opening minutes to show that. They grapple, push each other around, flirt with tests of strength and finally some quick takedowns before a drop-toe-hold moves into Crippler Crossface. Announcers reference that MVP walked away from a match with Benoit earlier that month. Lots of rest holds, sadly, and both men can do better. Lovely flip into a pin and Benoit hits the bridge before getting a backdrop. Benoit gets MVP into the sharpshooter and drags himself to the corner before Benoit finally releases him. Benoit hits the turnbuckle chest first and MVP floor him with a kick to the back of the head. More rest holds. Very boring match from these two men.

During this long, long, long rest hold, Cole mentions Benoit’s surgically repaired neck. MVP misses the big boot but hits a lovely overhead suplex and MVP gives off that the ref didn’t count quickly enough. More rest holds and this is getting very, very old. MVP batters Benoit down when he gets to his feet and the Canuck fights back with chops to the chest before ducking a punch and getting tin triple German suplexes. He runs the thumb over his throat and goes to jump… but is caught by MVP. MVP gets the feet on the rope during a pin. Two pins and MVP still can’t score a win. Lovely neckbreaker but still no pin. MVP sets up the suplex but Benoit retaliates and gets the crossface. MVP gets to the ropes and boots back on our boy Benoit. Lovely snapmare and another rest hold. Benoit is bleeding from his mouth.

MVP cheekily gets some leverage on the ropes and the ref sees him. Still in control, MVP attempts another pin after a big boot. Benoit ducks the boot and hits the quintuple Germans, heads to the top rope and dopey MVP is in the wrong position to get his knees up so has to move quickly so that Benoit can miss. MVP gets Benoit in a one-legged Boston Crab and the crowd are on their feet. Benoit gets the rope. MVP hits a lovely delayed vertical suplex but Benoit kicks out, attempts the corssface, is countered and Benoit gets the roll-up for the win.

[REDACTED] Benoit has pinned MVP to retain the United States title in 9:02.

2017 comments:

Good match, but not the best from these two men.

2007 comments:

Big Botchy Magoo there at the end.

Grade: B.

Sadly, JBL calls Benoit a Hall-of-Famer. Ouch.

Backstage, Todd chats to Jaaaaaahn Cena! But then Randy Orton appears. Both men are due to be in the ring later on this evening for their millionth or so match. Orton says that he and Cena have a lot of similarities: they are young, handsome and talented. HBK and Edge are not. How about they gang up on the old-timers and then see who the real men are. John asks if Orton really thinks Cena is handsome and if he wants to “get together” and “take it lying down”. Cena says it’s not his thing. Randy replies with, “You’ll be in the ring, tonight, with me on top!” Then Ron Simmons appears and says “Damn.”

Back in the arena, Tazz and Joey chat as a weird cover of Green Day’s “Longview” plays. Promo for the lead-up to the next match. Bobby Lashley beat Umaga and Cunt President, Bobbo Lasher and Stone Cold shaved his head. Shane decides to beat the Lasher and apparently it is a close match until the heels arrive and beat on Lashley, hitting him with big old chair shots. Vince makes the match: Vince and Shane and Umaga versus Bobby Lashley for the ECW World Championship.

Here comes the money! Old Shane O-Mac comes out, happy as Larry. What a guy.

Umaga comes out next without Armando Alejandro Estrada, who was thrown to the floor on ECW the past week. Umaga hits the steel ring steps before walking up them. Good man.

No Chance! Old Do-Ragged Vince comes out. A crowd member asks Vince to take off the hat. Another asks, “Got hair?” Vince seems to be wearing black jeans. Both McMahons use the “break” motion.

Big silence before Bobbo Lasher’s music hit. He gets a substantial pop, but this might be piped in. Farty pyro goes off, spraying Bobby in golden sparks. He does his Brock jump and the ring pyro hits. Lovely image of all three of Team McMahon against Team Bobbo. Vince and Umaga actually leave the ring to stand by the side! Fair play.

ECW World Championship match: Bobby Lashely (c) vs. Umaga, Vince McMahon and Shane McMahon.

Bobby instantly lifts up Shane, slams him down and batters him in the corner. Shane is ragdolling and pantomiming. Bobby has a wee chat with him, Irish whips him and hits the spinebuster before throwing him out. Vince threatens to come in and when Shane rocks into the ring, he tags in Umaga. Boos from the crowd. Umaga is thrown into the corner and battered by our boy Bobbo. Umaga batters on Bobby and the announcers tell us that Umaga only has two blemishes on his record – both caused by Bobby, once at WrassleMania and another in Italy. Bobby throws Umaga out, tosses Shane over the rope and leaves only Vince on the apron. Slowly, Vince attempts to go in, but gives just enough time for Umaga to be thrown off the apron and Shane to have a lovely delayed suplex. Umaga rocks in and Bobby hits a drop-toe-hold, dropping Umaga into Shane. Bobby runs the ropes and Shane pulls the top one down, throwing Lashley outside.

Umaga throws Bobby into the ring steps. Umaga hits the big leg drop and rakes Bobby’s back loads. Shane is tagged in and lays the boots onto Bobby before hitting the armbar. Lovely armbar-headscissors. Bobby powers through and tries to lift Shane up but falls back down. Lasher finally lifts Shane up, slams him down and attempts the pin but it is broken by Umaga. Umaga tags in and gives a big headbutt to Lasher. Lashley fights back after a looooong rest hold and he gets a knee to the back from Shane and a Samoan Drop from Umaga. Shane is once again tagged in – Vince hasn’t been in yet. Shane goes back to the elbows and knees to a prone Bobby before hitting what appears to be a Camel Clutch, break back, make humble.

Shane fights back from Bobby’s attempt to escape by dropping the old arse on him and hitting the Camel Clutch again. Bobby fights back again and Bobby rams him into the turnbuckle before hitting a T-bone suplex followed by clotheslines and shoulder barges and a back-body drop. He gives Shane the torture rack backbreaker and goes for the pin. As Umaga pops in, Lasher hits the spear and the Dominator before Vince comes in to break the pin. The crowd pop as the two men square off in the middle of the ring. Bobby lifts Vince for the Dominator but Shane grabs his leg and Umaga throws him down. The ref shouts at the illegal men and Shane hits Bobby with the ECW belt. Vince goes to pin Bobby and only gets a two! Bobby does the roll-up and Shane jumps in to break the pin! Umaga is tagged in, hits the flying headbutt and Vince tags in for another pin. Bobby kicks out and Vince, furious, tags Umaga in. A second splash and once again, Vince pops in, gets the pin and wins this time.

Mr. McMahon has pinned Bobby Lashley to win the ECW World Championship in 15:45.

2017 comments:

A better match at half the time. Otherwise, a great big “fuck you” to ECW fans.

2007 comments:

Jesus, that went on forever.

Grade: C.

A real shame. Vince can’t seem to tag people in either. Umaga, Vince and Shane all shake hands. Shane attempts to hug Umaga and gets pushed back. Announcers feign shock. The real shock is how this match was so damned long. Who booked this and thought that a fifteen minute match would be a good idea? There were no spots here, there were no exciting parts, no big pops. The whole thing was just a giant, “fuck away off with your ECW” to everyone.

On the Card will return on May 13 2017 with the third and final part of Backlash 2007.

Ruthless Aggression #16. WrestleMania 23 (April 1, 2007) Part 3

Previously on On the Card: Undertaker wins once again.

Cut to baby Lashley and Bobby Lashley as he talks about being a boy in a military family.

Backstage, we have Vince meeting his granddaughter. In the background, there are picutres of Donald Trump with different hairdos. Vince chastises Stephanie for bringing his granddaughter in. Then he makes faces at the baby and tells her how he’s going to batter Donald Trump. Stephanie is clearly uncomfortable with this. He smells something and tells Stephanie that the child, “just took a Trump.” Hilarious.

Back in the arena, Taz and Joey Styles introduce the ECW Originals. Sandman, RVD, Tommy Dreamer and Sabu rock through the crowd. Sabu hits people left and right. Prick. He actually gets annoyed that fans are trying to touch him.

The New Breed music hits and Elijah Burke, Marcus Cor Van, Matt Striker and Kevin Thorn rock down with Ariel and her breasts and teeth. Both teams square off and then split to their separate sides of the ring as the bell goes.

Eight-man tag team match: The ECW Originals (RVD, Tommy Dreamer, Sabu and The Sandman) def. The New Breed (Elijah Burke, Marvus Cor Von, Matt Striker and Kevin Thorn (w/ Ariel)) via pin in 7:27.

Good to see that Vince is giving the ECW lads a payday. Shame it’s in a n eight-man tag governed by Fed rules as opposed to ECW rules and it’s for less than ten minutes in the dead zone after an Undertaker match.

Sabu and Striker to start off. Big punches from Striker. Sabu bounces off the ropes, hitting jumps. Sandman is tagged in, hits a shitty leg drop, attempts the pin and Marcus breaks it. Elijah jumps in, Tommy pops in and double elbows to Elijah. Ariel shows everyone her bum. Marcus comes in and punches the shite out of Tommy followed by a double underhook suplex. Elijah jumps in and they hit a double back body drop. Elijah hits the double knees in the corner and Sabu breaks up the pin. Kevin Thorn is in next, knocking Dreamer down and hammering away on him with a lovely wee headlock. Kevin hits a lovely sit-out powerbomb and Sabu, once again, breaks the pin. Marcus is in next, hits a nice suplex and cover. More headlocks. More Ariel bum.

Marcus hits Sandman and Tommy hits a double reverse DDT/neckbreaker to Elijah and Marcus. Both men aim for the hot tag and Striker and RVD go in. RVD cleans house. Striker gets a boot to the face, goes for the Frog Splash, kicks Kevin in the face, hits a rolling monkey flip followed by Rolling Thunder and Marcus knocks RVD down. Sabu jumps over the top ropes and everyone hits their specials. RVD goes top rope, hits the Five Star Frog Splash and the pin in 7:27.

2017 comments:

High-paced nothing match where no one stood out and Sandman did nothing.

2007 comments:

ECW is around forever.

Grade: D

I can imagine that Sandman is happy he has enough money to pay for his drugs for the next week.

Stone Cold young boy promo where a bald kid pours milk on himself.

Promo for WrestleMania 24 in Orlando.

Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler introduce Thomas “The Hitman” Hearns. Wait. What? Another hitman?

Jim tells us that the Battle of the Billionaires is up next. Vince vs. Cunt President. I bet a lot of celebrities are regretting being involved with this, The Rock included, as they suck up to Donald. Donald drops money on people. Vince brings Umaga, the until-recently-undefeated Samoan Bulldozer. Trump picks boring old Bobbo Lasher. Apparently, this is crazy, so they bring in someone sensible to keep the peace: Stone Cold. Bet he’s regretting that something shocking. Vince shaves Eugene’s head and Donal hits a weak-wristed slap.

Fuck this promo package, fuck this match and fuck that cunt president.

Lilian attempts to read the rules, messes up and a barber shop comes to the ring with its own music.

Vince’s music hits and down he comes to the ring, big swagger on him. The Miss Teen USA, Miss USA and Miss Universe all give the thumbs down. Vince mimes cutting hair. Brilliant sign that says, “Arrive, Shave Head, Leave.”

Intercontinental Champion Umaga arrives with Armando Alejandro Estrada. He walks past the barbershop and stares intently at it. Vince does a wee pantomime for Umaga. JR just wanks Vince off on the commentary, talking about how amazing he is.

Cunt President Donald Trump comes out to the Money in the Bank theme song, funnily. He’s accompanied by Miss USA or someone and has a really long intro. He gives the fingers to the camera as well. Arsehole. Worse than an arsehole. He is the divil. At the time, though, I thought that Trump was hilarious. He’s throwing up the fist as well, powerfist. In retrospect, of course, it’s a white power fist.

Which makes it even funnier that his champion is ECW champion, Bobbo Lasher. The pyro hits, giving him a golden shower. JR calls him, “No nonsense,” which is a nice way of saying, “boring”. When Trump came down, money cascaded from the ceiling, similar to how it did in WrassleMania 32 with Shane. I don’t know if it’s real money – probably not – but one person in the crowd – maybe a plant – has a legit $100 bill. Bobbo’s pyro hits and he hugs Cunt Trump. There’s a Northern Irish flag in the crowd.

Glass shatters. Stone Cold Steven Austin, the special guest referee, comes down to the ring. What a fucking legend. He’s looking a bit chubby, though, but he has been out of the game for five years by this point. He goes to all four turnbuckles and throws up the fingers, jawing off to the crowd. What a guy. He checks the ring ropes. Good man. His music finishes and Stone Cold tells Cunt Trump to fuck off. JR calls Cunt Trump, “one of the unique mysteries of mankind.”

Hair vs. Hair match with Stone Cold Steve Austin as special guest referee: Bobby Lashley (with Cunt President Trump) def. Umaga (with Vince McMahon and Armando Alejandro Estrada) via pin in 13:00.

Stone Cold rings the bell before both men are in the ring. Cheeky rascal. Umaga runs straight for Bobby and the two punch each other until Bobby is thrown back. Stone Cold counts in the corner, asks for a rope break and drags Bobby back when he doesn’t break the ropes. The pair square off for a pop from the crowd. Bobby goes top rope and hits a shoulder barge. He goes to get the pin and would have gotten it – really, Umaga? A three count from a shoulder barge? – but Armando Alejandro Estrada puts his foot on the ropes. C’mon. Bobby takes umbrage to this and drags Estrada into the ring. This spot should have been left until later on in the match. It’s a dumb spot. Bobby hits a running powerslam on Estrada and chucks him out of the ring. Umaga runs for Bobbo but he pulls the rope down and Umaga flies over. Bobby punches the shite out of Umaga mid-ring and Bobby runs at him, getting side-stepped and a slap on his arse from Umaga as he flies through the ropes.

Umaga splashes Bobby mid-ring and chokes him after a failed pin attempte. Austin slaps Umaha when he doesn’t break the count and the pair square off. Umaga goes back to choke Bobby, once again he does not break the count after five so Stone Cold pulls on Umaga’s hair. That’s three square-offs that Stone Cold has had this match. Umaga drops on Bobby from Bret’s rope. He does it twice. Umaga hits a lovely Samoan drop on Lasher and drops the boot into his chest. Lashley lifts Umaga up for a body slam but can’t hold him and Umaga falls on him for a pin. Vince goes to the apron and Bobby knocks him off, getting a Russian leg sweep for his effort. Umaga goes top rope but Bobby throws him off, followed by a Rikishi-style sell for a clothesline from Bobby. Wonderful.

Stone Cold starts the ten count and gets to nine before stopping, walking about the ring, telling them to get up and fight. Shane comes out to help his dad. Good old Shaneo-Mac. Bobby takes a great right hand from Umaga and the pair of them have a wee chat in the corner. Once again, Stone Cold forcefully removes Umaga from Lasher and Shane comes up for the distraction. Stone Cold chases him away and takes a Samoan Spike to the throat, rolling out of the ring. Cut to Cunt Trump, who doesn’t know what the fuck is happening and just says, “Bobby!” over and over. Cunt, cunt, cunt.

Shane is in the ring, helping Umaga. Vince is dead happy. Shane hits his Shane Shuffle, gets caught for a belly-to-belly but Umaga saves him. Umaga hits Bobby with his arse. Vince takes out a trashcan and chucks it to Shane – good catch, brother. Shane gets up to set up Coast-to-Coast, points to Cunt Trump and hits the trashcan into Bobbo’s face. No pop for the Coast-to-Coast, though. Shane removes his shirt and – oh God! – he has a referee’s shirt on! Cheeky rascal. Umaga goes to the top rope to hit a Samoan splash but Austin is up, pulling Shane out of the ring before he can finish the count. On the way back into the ring, Stone Cold is knocked to the floor. Cut to cunt Trump: “What’s going on over here?”

Cunt Trump attacks Vince, knocking him to the ground… for no reason. Umaga attempts to hit the Samoan Spike on Stone Cold but Austin ducks it, hits the Stunner and Bobby hits the spear for the pin in thirteen minutes.

2017 comments:

Great, fun match but Cunt Trump, so it balances out to be a shite match.

2007 comments:

I hope to never see Cunt Trump again.

Grade: Defies grading due to Stone Cold and Cunt Trump balancing each other out.

Vince pantomimes his disdain. He slowly makes his way to the barbershop. His eyes lock with Stone Cold and Austin rolls out, grabs Vince and drags him into the ring. He points at Vince, he gets an attack from Shane and gets a Lou Thesz Press and the bionic elbow followed by a stunner to win back his heat. Stone Cold’s music hits. Vince is trying to escape and as Stone Cold raises Bobby and Cunt Trump’s hands, Vince looks mighty pleased with himself. Bobby tears after him, lifts Vince and carries him back to the ring. The chair is set up in the ring. Stone Cold his standing behind Vince and McMahon leans back, touches Austin’s bald head, gets a Stunner.

Vince is strapped in and Cunt Trump raises the razor in triumph. Both Bobby and Cunt Trump shave Vince’s head. The whole thing lasts about a minute. Lasher gets the foam and a legit razor to shave McMahon’s head. Stone Cold sips a beer. The crowd is dead. Some music plays, “Bald Headed Blues.” McMahon looks around like an idiot and shows Vince his head all bald. Bobby’s music hits, Stone Cold gets the beers and the three of them celebrate. Cunt Trump doesn’t chug it. I thought Cunt Trump didn’t drink. Stone Cold stunners him and his music hits. Good man yourself, Stone Cold. Replays are shown. I am glad to be done with this segment. It is interesting to see if WWE reference this at any point over the next wee while considering Cunt President.

On the Card will return on April 22 2017 with the fourth and final part of WrestleMania 23.

Ruthless Aggression #14. Royal Rumble (Jan 28, 2007) Part 2

Previously on On the Card: Good opener and crappy Test match.

Cut to backstage where John Cena is getting the once over from a tuxedo doctor. He winces in pain. Vince comes in to look at John and tries to get him to step down. Vince makes fun of John and says that they cannot see each other and Vince certainly can’t see John as WWE champion. Closeup on John looking concerned.

Cut to outside, showing the AT&T centre. Cunt JBL and Cole big up the Batista vs. Kennedy match. Cunt JBL says that Smackdown is headlining… which they are not.

Promo for this match where Kennedy took part in a Beat the Clock challenge and fucked it up for everyone else, including Taker, who lost by one second. Kennedy attacks Batista and as Taker attempts revenge, Kennedy ducks and the Phenom hits the Animal. Old Drax gets a boot in the face.

Kennedy comes out, ready to say his name because that’s a fun gimmick. Not live we’ve ever seen that shite before. Say what you want about him, though, he puts his hand right up to catch the mic. He doesn’t miss. He says his name on the turnbuckle. Good man yourself, Kennedy. Mind the last time you fought Batista though? He bust your head open pretty bad. Kennedy says his name twice. Cunt JBL says that Kennedy is like New York – you have to say it twice.

Batista’s music hits and the pop is enormous. Jesus, Mary and St. Joseph. He comes out, goes left, goes right, hops in a corner and hits the machine gun pyro. Sign Guy has a “Bombs Away” sign with Batista’s face all up on it. Crazy. Kenny can’t wait to get a hold of him, though. Calm down, brother. Wait until the match starts, Christ. Kennedy won’t take his eyes off the belt. He’s in lurve.

World Heavyweight Championship match: Batista (c) def Mr. Kennedy via pin in 10:29.

The two men circle the ring together and Batista actually hissy slaps Kennedy. He does. Batista throws Kennedy about for a bit and the two men go into the corner together. Kennedy goes for the knee, tries to take Batista down, fails and throws Kennedy into the corner. He pinches Kennedy’s face and then gets an elbow in the face for his efforts. Big boot and bad suplex where Kennedy falls on his arse. Pin attempt. Pin fail, brawl to outside. Both men bounce about, hitting the steel steps and Batista has a go at the back of Kennedy’s head and then the front of his head and then both men are back in the ring.

Batista gives Kennedy some chops and… he hurts his knee? Kennedy gives it a dropkick and gives Batista a big boot in the hole. Kennedy works the knee for a while and Kennedy goes for a pin, but a kickout before even one. Kennedy attempts… some weird figure four move… it looks odd, I tell you what. Batista is having a bad time and Kennedy uses the rope for leverage because he’s a heeling cunt. Batista is in the corner and Kennedy works his knee for a while. Kennedy has a bust nose and I can’t tell how he took the shot to do that. What happened, Kennedy? C’mon, brother, you’re always bleeding. See a doctor.

Kennedy gets the half-Boston crab and these two boys have spent half the match sitting and selling… badly. Batista is starting his slow, laborious crawl towards the ropes but Kennedy pulls him back. Batista knocks him off and tries for the roll-up, fails, attempts to lift Kennedy, fails, gets hit on the knee and gets a great-looking spinebuster in but then rolls about holding his knee, in great pain. Kennedy goes for the punches but Batista blocks him, hits the clothesline, a great back-body drop that seems like a botch, lifts Kennedy for the Samoan drop, chucks him, hits a rolling senton, goes for the Batista bomb but is thwarted and there’s a ref bump.

Kennedy hits the neckbreaker, goes for the pin, gets up, gets the referee up and goes for another pin but Batista kicks out. “What in the hell?” Cunt JBL asks. The crowd bay for Kennedy. Batista jumps up, hits Kennedy as he goes for an axe-handle-nothing. Batista hits the Batista Bomb, gets the pin in 10:29.

2017 comments:

Batista is really showing his lack of ability here. Lots of botches. Lots of problems on his end. Kennedy tried his hardest, but it wasn’t good enough to salvage this match. Kennedy is showing that he’s a bit like Alberto Del Rio – not amazing, but consistent and eager to please. If only Batista were there to help him.

2007 comments:

That boy Kennedy does nothing but bleed.

Grade: C

Batista celebrates. He (finally) sells his injuries. About time. Looks legit, actually.

Backstage, we have Kevin Thorn, an awkward Coach and Booby LaRue herself, Ariel. They go to take Mr. Thorn’s number from the Rumble Tumbler. Then Little Bastard comes in and causes trouble. He attacks Coach. It’s a terrible segment made worse by Khali entering and taking his number… but he takes three. Coach tells him he should only take one and so he drops them. Kelly picks them up, says that they’re the biggest balls she’s ever held and then Ron Simmons appears and says, “Damn.”

I’m not even making this up.

Saliva are in the crowd. Very exciting. Cut to Jumpin’ Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler as they introduce the semi-main event of the Last Man Standing match betwixt Cena and Umaga.

Promo for the match, showing Cena getting his arse handed to him by the big Samoan. We see Cena beating Umaga at New Year’s Revolution only a few weeks previous. Coach introduces Estrada, who reveals that it’s a Last Man Standing match and tells us the rules – the only way to win is by beating someone so badly that they cannot stand after a count of ten. Cena signs the contract, attacks Umaga and the two scrap for a while. Umaga splashes Cena through a table. This will surely come into play this evening, I guarantee it.

Back in the arena, Lillian Garcia introduces the match. She is wearing… an odd top with flames. She looks like a hot rod. But not the Hot Rod of either Rowdy or Autobots fame.

Umaga comes out and JR wonders why Armanda Alejandro Estrada got to choose the stipulation for the match. Sign Guy has a “Last Man Eating” sign and Umaga almost actually bites him. Jerry says that Umaga’s music is like King Kong’s music. Hmmm.

Cena’s music hits and there is a thunderous applause from the crowd. He enters, looking concerned, steel-jawed and does not run but instead walks down to the ring. Umaga watches him, snarl upon his face. Jerry says that Cena looks worried and is clearly in pain. He lifts the belt, though. The ref does, too, but the spinny WWE logo is upside down. Cena has bandages on his belly.

WWE Championship match: John Cena (c) def Umaga (w/ Armando Alejandro Estrada) via staying down for ten seconds in 23:09.

Down, let me rap with you real quick. I put the results and timings for the matches before the match begins for a good reason: wrestling isn’t really about the results, it is more about the journey to the results. It’s about the process, not necessarily the product. Yes, we all want our favourites to win, but we’ve all watched a match and thought, “The best man won,” even if the best man is someone you hate. Equally, we have all watched a match and thought, “That was a shit ending.” Wrestling is about a story and I know that as a reader of this blog, you are not concerned about spoilers; likely you have seen the PPV already and want to read some analysis on the matches. If I ruin results for you, whoops, but it is always interesting to walk into a match knowing the outcome and not watching it for the spectacle of the sport, but the thrill of the story and how the winner makes his journey through the match, following the highs and lows and emotions towards the eventual end.

That being said, with a twenty-three-minute match ahead of me, I am apprehensive especially knowing that we have SuperCena here vs. Once-was-tough-but-then-lost-lol-foreigner. I am a firm believer that any result, no matter how screwy, can be saved with good booking and talented wrestlers. I know that a Last Man Standing match must last some time otherwise it’s a squash. There are no roll-ups of DQs here, the only way to end is by the loser staying down for ten seconds. Although I know that these twenty-three minutes will justify the match ending… I do not think that it’s going to be a great match considering the competitors, their characters and the storyline thusfar. Cena is going to win and Umaga will lose his credibility. End of.

Both men square off mid-ring and Umage pushes Cena but he punches back. Lovely moving around, jawbreaker and Umaga punches Cena right in the gut. He falls out of the ring and the ref starts his count. There are no countouts, so why doesn’t Cena just walk off? Umaga throws Cena into the steel steps and Estrada speaks to Umaga, telling him what to be up to. The crowd cheer of Cena and the two men go for a walk up the aisle. Cena punches back, forgets to sell his ribs and Cena gives Umaga a toss into the apron. Umaga fights back and Cena jumps into the ring, hits him with a headbutt and kicks him in the tummy again. Poor Cena tummy.

Cena is on the ropes and Umaga punches him. Cena rolls as much as he can and gets a foot up in the corner but as he jumps out, Umaga knocks him right back down. Another ref count and he gets to seven before Cena is on his feet. Body slam from Umaga and he goes to get the steel steps. Estrada asks him to stop to see if Cena stirs. He does and the steps come in. As Umaga is getting to the apron, he hits the guillotine and chucks the steel steps out to hit Umaga in the beak. The crowd count along with referee Mike Chioda but the Samoan is up. Cena is on him quickly and has a head of steam but a spinning heel kick sends the champ to the ground. More tummy punches and a bear hug attempt that Cena blocks. No submissions here. Belly to belly finishes the hug. Umaga goes outside, gets the other part of the steps, gets them in and Cena is on his feet at eight. The crowd is chanting something unintelligible.

Umage sets the steps up in the corner and leans Cena up against them, punching him down. The crowd cheer. Umaga smiles. He builds up to the Ho Train, Cena moves, Umaga batters the steps. Cena picks the steps up and runs into Umaga with them in his hands. Ref and crowd count as one. Umaga gets to six and Cena goes top rope but Umaga predictably catches him and gives a lovely tiltawhirl sidewalk slam. Just great. Ref starts counting but Umaga almost helps him to his feet and then stomps him down, going for a big sit. He does it twice! Twice! On the third, Cena gets the knees up and becomes Supercena, hitting the facebuster to the steps and follows it up with a sit-out powerbomb on the steps. Ref counts both men and Cena hits the Five Knuckle Shuffle but the ref had stopped the count. He goes for the FU but drops Umaga halfway through. They both hit the steps. Another count by the ref and it reaches eight as Cena blades himself. Umaga batters him as the crowd tell Cena he sucks. He does not suck. Man’s a hero.

Umaga shouts at Cena in Samoan and stands back to let Cena stand up. The ref gets to eight once again and a “Let’s go, Cena! Cena sucks!” chant rises. Umaga slaps and chops Cena and big John actually punches himself in the head to bleed more. He jumps off the ropes and Umaga hits a Samoan Drop, calls for the Samoan Spike but stops the thumb on the way down, getting a headbutt instead, yo. Umaga sets him up for the tree of woe that makes the bladejob bleed more. Cena sits up as Umaga does for the flying headbutt and hits a wonderful fucking leg drop that legit made me go, “Oooooooh!” as he fell. Some elevation on it, good man John. Cena tosses Umaga into the ring post, gets a monitor and tosses Estrada away.

Cena busts Umaga with the edge of the monitor and dents the fucker. Ref starts the count and Umaga is up by seven. Cena pushes Umaga outside, goes for an axe-handle nothing and Umaga catches him, hits him against the ring post and bends him over the table. Sexy. All three announce tables are stripped and Umaga gets on one, runs across, gives it the big splash but Cena dodges, destroying the table. Luckily, he misses the monitor. Ref starts the count but Umaga is up at nine. Wonderful. Estrada is by a turnbuckle, fucking with it and unscrewing it. Estrada tells Umaga to lift it and beat Cena with it as a super Samoan Spike. But Cena is up! He hits the FU! He beats Umaga with it! He wraps the ring rope around Umaga! He chokes him out, looks legit painful, though Umaga is still breathing. The crowd go silent. Umaga gets up almost instantly and Cena is right back to choking him again. The crowd die again, thinking that this is pretty bad taste. Cena is up and the crowd chant away. JR reminds us that they’re looking for ten numbers. The ref reaches it and Cena wins in 23:09.

2017 comments:

I stand by my words up there but by Christ I am happy that match lasted that long. Not a minute was wasted. What a fucking great match.

2007 comments:

Whelp there goes Umaga’s winning streak.

Grade: A

Supercena wins again! But it’s a justified win. We see replays of that horrible choke spot. Cena walks down the aisle, walks backstage, salutes, ends his match.

On the Card will return on February 11 2017 with the third and final part of Royal Rumble 2007.

Ruthless Aggression #13: New Year’s Revolution (Jan 7 2007) Part 3

Previously on On the Card: Brilliant, bloody match that was saved from Trips hurting himself.

Backstage, Todd Grisham stumbles through a recap of the last match before introducing John Cena, who is the best Cena. Todd asks Cena if he is able to beat Umaga tonight.  Todd asks John if Umaga wants some, will he gets some? Cena gives a great promo, ripping the piss out of Umaga and a vaguely racist Samoan slur. He tells “the truth”, that he will fight a man who has not lost, never been pinned nor submitted in his time in the Fed. John says that he will defend the championship as best he can and it doesn’t matter on the outcome. He gives the salute and leaves.

Back in the arena, there are boos, probably for Cena, real boos that aren’t the piped-in cheers that they do when Cena normally turns up.

Carlito appears with Torrie Wilson and a dog. JR tells us that Torrie is his favourite person from Idaho, which isn’t saying much. Huh? I don’t know much about Idaho.

We see a promo where Chris Masters puts the Masterlock on Torrie. It’s just a full nelson. That’s all it is. Torrie is smiley despite the fact that she shouldn’t really be.

Chris Masters’ music hits and out he comes, the Masterpiece. Some pyro hits and he showboats for the crowd. He asks them if they know who the man is (apparently him) and more shitty pyro goes off.

Chris Masters def Carlito (w/ Torrie Wilson) via pin in 05:56.

The match starts pretty quickly. This is the usual piss-break match where everyone can leave before Cena comes out for the main event. Carlito deserves better than this. He hits the facebuster from Bret’s rope and takes a huge back-body drop from Masters. Another body drop from Roidy McMasters and a kick to the face as well. Good man yourself. Carlito escapes a backdrop and jumps onto the apron. Carlito hits a lovely double springboard moonsault onto Master but gets only a two-count. JR tells us that the Masterlock is just a full Nelson. Fair enough. Masters gives a one-arm backdrop where Carlito sells like a boss and lands on his face.

Masters drags Carlito about by the hair and JR complains that the ref does naught to stop it. Lovely backdrop and backbreaker on Carlito but despite it all, Carlito isn’t selling as much as he should. Torrie hits out perfect time on the mat, unlike Sable, who can’t batter in time at all. Terrible woman. Masters goes for a pin but fails. He shouts at Carlito, asks if he is trying to impress Torrie. A shitty springboard elbow from Carlito followed by a running knee and a side flapjack which only gets a two-count. Then there’s a weird manouver that Masters pulls the tights on Carlito and gets the pin in 5:56.

2016 comments:

Piss-break match and Carlito deserves better.

2006 comments:

This Chris Masters guy is a real piece of shit.

Grade: C

Masters hits the Masterlock for a few seconds, drops Carlito, points at him and wipes his eyes. What a wet fart. He leaves the ring with a strut, stops, turns around, comes back to the ring, scares Torrie away and decides to finally leave for real. JR says, “He has so little character that he would just do that.” Scathing.

Promo for the maaaaaain event: Umaga vs. Cena. We get that Umaga is super tough and Cena is super tough and this is going to be a match. As a mark, people would be going bananas for this. “Who will win?” they will ask, “How can Cena win this? Umaga is undefeated!” As a smark, people are asking, “How can Cena win whilst putting Umaga over?” and “Does Umaga deserve to be Fed Champ?”

We’re about to find out as Umaga appears, nine months of an undefeated streak and has had matches for ages as well, unlike people like Brock or Goldberg who wrestle once a year or so. Armanda Alejandro Estrada follows him but does not take the mic, thank Christ.

Cena’s music hits and the crowd goes bananas. I love Cena. I say this a lot. I know that he can be boring, especially at this time in history, but I just think he’s the bees knees. He comes down to the ring, throwing up the championship belt and not getting to the end of his song! Whaaaat? They must be trying to get the match over and done with as quickly as possible.

WWE Championship match: John Cena def Umaga (w/ Armanda Alejandro Estrada) via pin 17:18.

JR tells us that he does not envy the referee, Mike Chioda, nor does he envy John Cena. The match starts with quick-paced high-powered moves where Cena gives Umaga a facebuster, throws the Samoan out of the ring (where he goes bananas, like the savage he is) and waits for Umaga to go to the apron before attempting to knock him off and getting thrown out of the ring himself. Umaga throws Cena against the steel steps and chucks him into the ring. The crowd bay for Cena and Umaga charges him into the corner before hitting Cena with a great clothesline.

Umaga takes a bunch of punches before hitting Cena with a great Samoan Drop. Fantastic. Looked terrific, good man yourself. Cena gets to the apron and knocks Cena onto the table. Umaga intimidates the ref and walks out of the ring. JR says, “C’mon guys, we’ve had enough of this over here!” as the two threaten to damage the announcer’s table once more. Cena hits two shoulder barges and a great sunset flip that he Aloha Arns for a while before attempts to leg drop Cena but he rolls out of the way. Cena attempts to scoop Umaga for the body slam, fails and Umaga almost gets the pin. Umaga hits the leg drop and Cena is, once again, knocked onto the apron. Cena hits the guillotine and goes to the top rope with a great lariat that Umaga catches, turning it into a tiltawhirl sidewalk slam. Cena gets the foot on the rope before Umaga can get the three.

Big headbutts from the Samoan to our man John. John is up and finally gets a great sunset stunner on Umaga but the Samoan is up with the spinning kick following another headbutt. JR equates Umaga to Yokozuna, both Samoans. Umaga does a giant sit on Cena. On the third, Cena’s knees come up and get the Samoan in the balls. Cena goes for the FU but cannot lift him up. Christ, it looks like a bad fall. Cena gets chucked out of the ring by Umaga and there’s some showboating for a while. Cena is trying to hulk up in the middle of the ring and the pair have a little massage for a while. It’s all very nice.

Cena fights to his feet, breaks Umaga’s hold, gets a little momentum and is knocked to the floor. Umaga goes to Bret’s rope for a flying Samoan Spike but Cena rolls out of the way and we have a wee lie down by both men. Cena shakes the arm, building up to an FU. The pair trade punches mid-ring and Cena gets a big head of steam up before Umaga punches him to the ground. Cena throws Umaga into the corner twice, hits the sit-out powerbomb, gets ready for the Five Knuckle Shuffle, sells for a while and builds to the FU. Cena, once again, cannot lift Umaga up and he gets a belly-to-belly for his efforts. Umaga puts Cena into the tree of woe and gets a flying headbutt. Umaga builds up some momentum, runs at Cena and the champ gets a roll-up and wins in 17:18.

2016 comments:

Good match where no one goes over. The end lost all speed, though, and was a bit of a let-down.

2006 comments:

How did Umaga not kick out?

Grade: A-

Cena falls backstage as Umaga runs around in the ring, angry as a nest of hornets. He smashes that which is not already smashed and Cena returns to take the heat away, just like Hogan.

The Go Home Stats.

Man of the Matches: For that wonderful blade job, only Randy Orton.

Woman of the Matches: Victoria, who actually looked like she could wrestle.

Montel Vontavious Porter Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence: Randy Ooooooooorton.

Best Spot: Johnny Nitro’s ball-busting cage-door-wishbone.

Hatches: Torrie Wilson and Victoria.

Matches: No title changes. Jeff Hardy retains his Intercontinental championship; Mickie James retains her Women’s Championship; Rated-RKO retain their World Tag Team belt and John Cena retains his WWE Championship.

Dispatches: Due to Triple H’s knee injury, we won’t see him for a while. We will not see Vladamir Kozlov either.

Closing Statements: A filler PPV once again, but a fun one and it gets me all excited for the upcoming Royal Rumble.

On the Card will return on January 28 2017 with the Royal Rumble 2007.

Ruthless Aggression #10. Survivor Series (Nov 26 2006) Full review

The Ruthless Aggression Era was a time when the WWE roster was so huge and so varied that they had no way of continuing storylines each week on their two main shows – RAW and Smackdown – and so they created the draft where wrestlers and announcers would be drafted onto either one of the two shows. Smackdown wrestlers would not (usually) be able to appear on Raw or interact with Raw wrestlers and vice versa.

Ten years ago, on November 26, 2006, the twentieth annual Survivor Series aired. It was a WWE PPV, using a mixture of the RAW, Smackdown! and ECW brands, the first of its kind since Summerslam way back in August. Personally, the PPV came at a time where I had grown weary with professional wrestling, confused by the sheer number of wrestlers and unwilling to spend so much time per week watching hours of footage and trawling through shows, replays, promos and matches. I simply watched the PPVs. Over the next four weeks, I will review this PPV from the perspectives of a fan looking back at it after a decade as well as my original thoughts as a younger man watching it at the time.

Survivor Series 2006

No tagline this time either. The poster shows a skull with most of its teeth missing and tribal tattoos running up the side to join together in the shapes of Big Show, John Cena and King Booker T on its forehead. Ominous.

After ye olde wrasslin’ video, we are treated to a Survivor Series retrospective, showing huge schmoozes In the middle of the ring. We have Team RKO vs. Team DX. We have Mr. Kennedy vs. Undertaker for a First Blood match, Batista vs. Booker for the World Heavyweight championship. The next Survivor Series match is Team Big Show vs. Team Cena. Exciting stuff… in theory.

Big pyro in the Raw, Smackdown and ECW presented Survivor Series 2006. According to our first announcing team of Michael Tache n’ Soulpatch Cole and Cunt JBL, 17,893 souls are packed into the Wachovia Centre in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the land of the worst fans and a sandwich made of meat and cheese. An apparent 383,000 fans bought Survivor Series at home, a drop from the 400,000 the year previous and continuing a trend of dropping buys that peaked in 1998 and has not yet recovered.

Cole introduces Jerry “The King” Lawler and Jumpin’ Jim Ross. They speak for a while but fuck them because it’s time for the motherfucking Spanish Announcers, Hugo Savinovich and Carlos Cabrera. Cabrera legit forgets Jerry’s name because he says, “Gracias, Jim Ross, gracias… uh…. Senor,” and then turns to Savinovich and speaks in rapid Spanish to dispel the fact that he doesn’t know The King. As usual, Cabrera is sensible and Savinovich goes mental and has to be cut off by…

(Note: Before the PPV began, there was a dark match featuring Carlito and Charlie Haas. It lasted five minutes exactly and I am annoyed I missed it.)

It’s our girl, Lillian Garcia who introduces the first Survivor Series match and explains the rules: elimination-style match where someone can be eliminated the traditional way and the team with the last remaining members wins.

Ric Flair comes to the ring. No one seems to care.

Sgt. Slaughter comes with different music than usual and barely makes it to the ring before his music is cut.

Out comes the American Dream Dusty Rhodes and is clearly the most charismatic man in history.

Wait a minute… what is that…? Is that…?

HOLY SHITSNACKS IT’S FAAROOQ. He comes to the ring, blessedly, without Bradshaw and is addressed as Ron Simmons because the Fed were scared of Islam. Weren’t so scared when he was the leader of the Nation of Domination, were you, lads?

Out comes Arn motherfucking Anderson. What an absolute hero. I love Arn. He looks like a proto-wrassler, the one from whom all other wrestlers were formed.

Then the Spirit Squad come down. Shower of bastards, the lot of them. Now, there are five legends and five Spirit Squad members but Arn isn’t taking part, he’s on the outside, and so Mitch is excluded from the Spirit Squad match.

Survivor Series match: Team Legends (Ric Flair, Sgt. Slaughter, Dusty Rhodes and Ron Simmons (w/ Arn Anderson)) def. The Spirit Squad (Kenny, Johnny, Nicky, Mikey (w/ Mitch)) via elimination in 10:31.

Ron starts off with Mikey and the latter attempts to shoulder barge the former and fails. Lovely lockup and Ron tosses Mikey. Mikey takes over with some great punches followed by a lovely powerslam from Ron. The rest of the Spirit Squad get involved and Ron takes them out. Mitch pulls on Ron’s leg and the two square off before Arn gets involved. The ref sees that Mitch was being a bit cheeky and so disqualifies him. Ron spinebusters Mikey, dragging him down the aisle and Arn is disqualified too. The crowd chant, “Bullshit!”

Slaughter and Nicky pop into the ring. USA chant starts up as Nicky Ziggler tries to salute Slaughter. Slaughter salutes, offers his hand and hits triple powerslams on Nicky. Apparently, Ron has been disqualified as well…? I missed that.

Ron Simmons has been apparently eliminated by countout in 1:54.

Dusty comes in, hits a weak arm bar and tags in Flair who chops away on Nicky’s chest, who bumps like a boss. Slaughter comes in, hits a lovely clothesline followed by a Cobra Clutch, to which the ref does my favourite spot, the lifting and the dropping of the hands. Johnny comes in, causing a disruption and rolling Slaughter over, plopping Nicky on him and he gets the pin.

Sgt. Slaughter has been eliminated by Nicky in 6:27.

Dusty is in and moving to Nicky instantly. He hits a great elbow and gets the pin.

Nicky has been eliminated by Dusty Rhodes in 6:54.

Mikey comes in to attack Dusty, pulling him into the corner and beating on him with the other members of the Spirit Squad. Kenny pops in, Dusty tries to walk it off and gets his comeback with great punches and an elbow to the face. Kenny forces the roll up and eliminates Dusty.

Dusty Rhodes has been eliminated by Kenny in 8:25.

Only Flair is left and Kenny drags him over to the Spirit Squad corner to take over. Flair gets beat on in the corner by… Mitch, I think. Or is it Mikey? It’s probably Mikey. Flair hits the inverted atomic drop and pins Mikey with his legs on the turnbuckle.

Mikey has been eliminated by Ric Flair in 9:13.

Two on one now with Kenny back in the match. The crowd are excited as Flair gets hit with a lovely back body drop. Flair gets hit by the Irish whip and Kenny ducks to hit another back body drop but Flair rolls it into an inside cradle and gets the pin.

Kenny has been eliminated by Ric Flair in 9:49.

Kenny and Flair push each other until Johnny comes in. The pair slap each other silly and Flair attacks his knee, finally going for the figure four, to which he taps almost instantly.

Johnny has been eliminated by Ric Flair in 10:31. Ric Flair is the Sole Survivor!

2016 comments:

It’s a standard good vs. evil opener to get the crowd rallying behind the faces. Ten minutes is enough for this match. Any more would have been painful. I get that it’s nice to let the legends have a win, but what does it say when four geriatrics are better than the young bucks? I mean, does it mean to say that wrestlers get stronger as they age until they reach the cured leather of Ric Flair and become immortal?

2006 comments:

Fuck the Spirit Squad and fuck Ric Flair.

Grade: C

The Spirit Squad get their heat back by running in and beating on Flair.

Cole tells us about Philadelphia, the City of Brotherly Love, apparently, despite the fact that everyone there hates everyone else.

Cut to promo showing [REDACTED] Benoit winning the US Championship. What a great guy. Chris tries to speak to Vicky about Chavo and his recent murder of Rey Mysterio’s leg. Vicky wanted to beat on Rey was well, but [REDACTED] ran in, saving Mysterio’s knee in the process. They bring up Eddie because God forbid we forget about him.

Chavo’s music hits and down he comes with Vicky. I like Vicky but she’s not a wrestler… or should be involved in wrestling at all. Chavo, according to a sign in the crowd, stinks.

[REDACTED]’s music hits and down he comes. The announcers mention Eddie’s estate, which is a bad show all together. Let the man stay dead, Chris Almighty.

WWE United States Championship match: [REDACTED] Benoit (c) def. Chavo Guerrero (w/ Vicky Guerrero) via submission in 8:19.

Benoit starts off with some heavy punches followed by a body slam. Absolutely no time wasted here. Bossman slam and pin attempt. Benoit is throwing Chavo about as Cunt JBL has a go at the [REDACTED] one. Each shot from Benoit is sold so well including the lovely suplex. More pin attempts. More fails. Vicky is clapping and cheering for Chavo and it helps as Chavo takes over, hammering on Benoit in the corner. Good man yourself.

Chavo lifts up Benoit and it is twisted into a Crossface but Vicky grabs Chavo’s foot and places it on the rope to break the hold. Lovely backdrop from Benoit followed by Chavo throwing him shoulder-first into the turnbuckle. Chavo hits a lovely side suplex but then there’s a bit of rest holds so we can show the play. Chavo is stretching Benoit’s shoulder and the pair struggle for a while before Benoit lifts Chavo up for the Samoan Drop followed by a dropkick and another close two-count.

A great uppercut from Chavo leads to Benoit on the mat. Benoit hits triple German Suplexes and calls for the diving headbutt. Vicky is up to no good at the turnbuckle but the diving headbutt misses as Chavo rolls out of the way. Chavo hammers away on Benoit, hits a lovely vertical suplex, goes to the top rope, hits the frog splash and a two count.

Ah ha! Take that, you bastard!

Benoit is still in and the crowd are chanting for Eddie. Benoit goes for the Sharpshooter and as Chavo kicks him off, Benoit hits Vicky who was on the apron. In the confusion, Chavo is hit with the Crippler Crossface and submits in 8:19.

2016 comments:

Great match from our man [REDACTED] which makes it ever harder for the following months to take.

2006 comments:

Chavo and Vicky are dicks.

Grade: A

Cunt JBL claims Benoit hit Vicky on purpose. Ohhh, lighten up you droning arse. He calls him a son of a bitch as well. Cheeky rascal. Benoit retains and Chavo stinks, still.

Backstage, we have Edge and Lita being interviewed by Todd Grisham. Lita is still going to retire after the match tonight. She could either retire a heel champ or drop the title in Philly. Edge drops some sort of sports reference. Edge begins to cut a promo but in the background, Cryme Tyme are sneaking into Lita’s dressing room with a box. They leave a minute later with a box filled with underwear and threaten Todd, saying, “You ain’t seen nothin’!”

Back in the arena, Mickie James skips to the ring. Very exciting stuff. Bit upsetting that last month, we lost Trish and now we lose Lita, arguably two of the best female wrestlers of their generation and certainly the best in the Fed until the Four Horsewomen turned up.

Lita appears after Lillian gives her a particularly long pause in her intro. She comes down, heelish and smug, gives the belt over and competes in her final match.

WWE Women’s Championship Match: Mickie James def. Lita (c) via pin 8:18.

Given only one second less than the United States championship match, this better be wonderful. Lita starts by taunting Mickie and gets a drop-toe hold and some dodgy punches for her effort. Jerry is being a bit disgusting about Mickie as she takes a bad bump into the corner. JR states that Philly are not Lita fans, which makes no sense as they hate everything. Trish is name-dropped and Jerry makes a diaphragm joke as nothing of interest happens in the ring.

JR bigs up Lita and her innovation including the Litacanrana. Lovely side-Russian leg sweep from Lita but she only gets the two. The Philly crowd call Lita a crack whore. Nice, Philly crowd. Lovely suplex in response but only a two-count. Lita jumps on Mickie’s back and attempts the sleeper hold but Mickie rolls away from her and gets to the ropes. Lita goes to the top rope with a cross-body but Mickie rolls away. Lita is lying in the ring and Mickie goes to the top-rope, receiving a backdrop for her effort. The Philly crowd tell us Lita has herpes. Punches in the ring and a great bunch of clotheslines followed by boots and a great kick but gets only a two-count. Fisherman suplex gets the same result. Bunch of false finishes and Lita goes top-rope again. JR accidentally calls her top-rope moonsault a Litacanrana like a goose.

Mickie escapes a DDT and gets the pin for a two-count. Lita attempts a roll-up and gets the same. Two more close roll-ups before Mickie James hits Lita with a jumping DDT for the pin in 8:18.

2016 comments:

A shame that that was Lita’s last match.

2006 comments:

Cryme Tyme are dicks.

Grade: C

JR says, “Lita, finishing her career on her back.” Lillian is invited to the ring by Lita and she gets called the greatest women’s champion of all time, receiving only boos. She gets the mic and starts rambling for a while, calls herself disgusted and cannot think of a better crowd to leave in front of. Then Cryme Tyme come out with Lita’s underwear in a box. They say they’re wanting a tribute sale but then change it to “ho-sale” and a damned fan actually buys some. Christ of almighty. They take out yeast infection medication. Hilarious. They go for JBL and he gives them $100 for her panties. They take his money and throw the panties into the crowd. Cryme Tyme take out a dildo and this joke got old about five minutes ago. They run out of stuff and sell the box. Lita is upset mid-ring and the line has been crossed.

JBL shouts nonsense and is clearly having some sort of embolism on air. Man should be put down. Cut to a pre-recorded interview between Cole and Batista. Cole reminds him that he lost his championship eleven months ago due to injury. Batista is silent. Cole asks him if he has any reason to believe that tonight will be different to all other championship matches. Cole reminds him that tonight is his final chance to get Booker’s championship. They show the contract signing where Booker predictably attacked Batista. Back in the interview, big Drax the Destroyer just stares ahead before finally taking off his glasses, looking Cole square in the eyes and tells him that he is leaving tonight World Heavyweight Champion.

Cut to a statue of Rocky Balboa of Rocky, Rocky II, Rocky III, Rocky IV, Rocky V, Balboa and Creed fame.

Out come the Hardys to their rockin’ music. They’re part of Team DX but known as Team Extreme… Or is it Teem X-Treem? I give up.

Who is this motherfucker? It’s Chick Magnet Punk! Coming out to his generic Killswitch Engage This Fire Burns music, not the old Cult of Personality. He’s shouting at the crowd and hopping so he must be face. He gives the Hardys double high-tens.

Are you ready? The crowd is… ready for a fucking seizure with their strobe lighting effects and weird video. Trips and Michaels come out for their 9th and 14th Survivor Series appearance respectively. Team DX is complete and crotch chop to show so. Are they going to spend, like, twenty minutes spouting the same old shite off to the crowd?

Wait, why are the face team coming out first? No time to consider that, Trips has a microphone. Best go to the loo now, so.

Trips wants to hear the crowd and he and Shawn have duelling crowd-points and cheers including Hardys and CM Punk. Jerry asks, “Does it seem like everyone’s ready?” The crowd fucking chant for CM Punk and Trips steals his thunder by handing him the mic. Punk asks the crowd if they are ready and Trips runs off before they really have a chance to answer. Trips bigs up the talent in the ring. Trips does that hateful “llllllet’s get ready to suuuuuck it,” shite while Shawn reminds them that if they’re not down with that… they’re going to suck it anyway. Wrestling is so silly sometimes.

Johnny Nitro’s music hits and out he comes with Melina. K-Fed is mentioned as going one-on-one with Cena on Raw.

Out comes my boy Gregory Helms, the longest-reigning champion in sports entertainment. I love The Hurricane.

Mike Knox comes out, making his debut. Kelly Kelly is there too, wearing not much.

The World Tag Team Champions, Edge and Randy Orton slide in and Jerry tells us that business has just picked up. There are three long coats in the ring just now – Edge, Nitro and Hurricane.

I remember looking at this match and thinking, “Christ alive, look at all those amazing lads! This is going to be terrific!” I won’t lie to you… I feel similar just now.

Survivor Series match: Team DX (Shawn Michaels, CM Punk, Matt Hardy, Jeff Hardy and Triple H) def. Team Rated-RKO (Edge, Randy Orton, Johnny Nitro, Mike Knox and Gregory Helms (w/ Kelly Kelly and Melina)) via elimination in 11:30.

The bell rings and we all wonder who is going to be first in the ring. Knowing that this is essentially a Triple H and Shawn Michaels vs. Edge and Randy Orton match with some lovely tasty flavouring to the side, it makes sense that they start it off, take a sideline and then just watch for a while until the end.

And wouldn’t you know it, Trips starts off, wanting to see Kelly Kelly’s tits. She goes to the apron, ready to show (as Shawn comically averts his eyes) and Mike Knox takes offence to this. Shawn superkicks him, goes for the pin and…

Mike Knox has been eliminated by Shawn Michaels in 40 seconds.

I say. Good show. Shawn walks to Trips and asks, “Who was that?” He asks some other questions.

Shot to the outside and a hilarious look from Mike and Kelly Kelly. He has fire in his eyes and she has this wee smile that seems to say, “Whoops.” Actually made me laugh.

Inside, Shawn and Nitro go head-to-head. Lovely running of the ropes from these two men. Shawn slides outside, puts his arm around Melina and she relaxes… until she realises that it’s Shawn and screams. Shawn slides in and takes our boy Jeff who does nothing and tags Fat Matt in for the Team Extreme Double Team. Helms jumps in, punches Matt for a while is thrown off the turnbuckle. Edge is in, stomping a mudhole in Hardy, throwing up the Hardy sign and tagging Helms back in. In comes Randy – Christ, it’s a revolving door out there – and Matt is bust open, bleeding from the mouth. Melina screams as Nitro pops in. Matt hits Nitro with the Side Effect and goes for the hot tag on CM Punk.

Punk uses high knees a lot followed by a bulldog and attempts a sleeper but is reversed. He tries again, gets the Anaconda Vice in and Nitro taps out.

Johnny Nitro has been eliminated by CM Punk in 4:54.

Melina is upset and both women are now leaving the arena. Edge is in, beating Punk in the corner. Punk goes for the ten-count and Helms distracts the ref as Randy attacks Punk. Randy tags in with a lovely dropkick, tags Helms in and he gives Punk the Gator Roll. Helms hits Punk with the double knees and Randy pops in again. Punches are shared and Randy gives Punk the RKO. He goes for the pin and Shawn pops in to break the pin. Edge is in, desperate for the spear but misses Punk and hits the turnbuckle. Hot tag for Trips and he cleans house, knocking Helms down with the high knee, followed by Randy then Helms again. Edge pops in to break up the Pedigree. Jeff and Shawn come in and hit stereo suicide dives. Fat Matt Hardy is in, bloody mouth and all, hits the Twist of Fate on Helms followed by the Swanton by Jeff and the pin.

Gregory Helms has been eliminated by Matt Hardy in 9:23.

Randy and Edge are outside the ring with their belts in hand. They climb to the apron and decide not to go inside. Big boos from the crowd followed by the Hardys dragging them back in. Trips and Shawn beat on them and everyone gets a shot on Edge before Shawn Sweet Chin Musics him for the pin.

Edge has been eliminated by Shawn Michaels in 10:35.

Randy is the sole survivor on his team and he has just realised it. He attempts to leave via the audience and Punk, Matt and Jeff chase after him. He goes into the ring, gets a Sweet Chin Music, a Pedigree and goes down for the pin.

Randy Orton has been eliminated by Triple H in 11:30. It is a clean sweep for Team DX!

2016 comments:

An okay match, but it’s basically a comedy matchup, isn’t it? All it needed was ball shots.

2006 comments:

Needed more Hardy.

Grade: B

As the boys celebrate mid-ring. Jerry wonders if this is the first clean sweep in Survivor Series history. I can only think of one other that happened before 2006 and that was the 1993 Survivor Series with Four Doinks.

The announce team reverts to Cole and JBL. Shite. Promo for the First Blood match. This is the eighth First Blood match in WWE history and the second last ever, probably. Stone Cold was in three, this is the Undertaker’s third as well. Kennedy bigs up our man The Undertaker and his sixteen years of wrestling. Taker came out and Kennedy beat him, busting him open with the microphone. Taker sat up, though, because he’s awesome. He has seen the best, fought the best and beaten the best. He has sneaked up behind men and poured blood on them like that bit in Carrie. He’s an absolute headcase.

Backstage, Kennedy is staring into middle distance. Kristal is interviewing him and asks him if he has any thoughts. Kennedy says that this match is the biggest match of his carrier. MVP appears and points out the Vaseline on Kennedy’s head to stop him getting “cracked open”. He pledges his allegiance to Kennedy.

Tony Chimel does a Lillian and introduces the match that everyone understands the stipulation of.

Kennedy comes out, very serious and very scared. He goes straight to a turnbuckle and starts removing the protective covering from them. The mic comes down and reminds everyone of his name. Twice. Idiot.

Undertaker’s bell goes and the Deadman comes out. Kennedy continues to remove the protective covering from the turnbuckles. Taker walks super slow because why would he move quickly? Waste of energy if you ask me. It’s times like this that you miss big Paul Bearer. That was a man who could dress the Undertaker like a motherfucker.

First Blood match: Mr. Kennedy def. The Undertaker via haemorrhaging in 09:15

Kennedy slides outside and Undertaker circles the ring. Taker knocks Kennedy down and tosses him outside. He knocks Kennedy against the announce table. It must be difficult to have a First Blood match when bleeding happens accidentally all the time. Kennedy is in the audience now, harassing the fans. Taker is giving Kennedy mad licks here, smashing him about the race loads. Taker is thrown against the steel steps and the cameraman gets involved by mistake. Silly cameraman.

Charles Robinson is the ref of this match and watches as Undertaker throws Kennedy into the steel post, bouncing him off the announce table once again. JBL points out that Taker is going for Kennedy’s ribs, which is not the way you want to go to make someone bleed, really. Taker goes to the top rope with Kennedy and hits the superplex, which is great but not where you go if you want blood. Kennedy hits the low blow because he’s a cunt. Taker busts Kennedy with the unprotected turnbuckle. JBL mentions that men can also bleed internally, which is true.

Kenny is bleeding from his mouth and, oh, he’s bleeding internally, just like JBL said. But Little Naitch has seen nothing. MVP turns up to clean up the blood and rolls Kennedy back in. Little payback there for you. Taker continues to beat on Kennedy in the corner. JBL tells us that you do not bleed internally unless something is wrong. He then questions why anyone would sanction this type of match. The action pauses while we see if Taker is bleeing. MVP pops in with the steel chair and after a coffuffle, he accidentally hits Taker with a chair, busting him wide open. Naitch pops back in, sees the blood and calls the match in 9:15.

2016 comments:

Weak, weak, weak match. Not smart, very boring.

2006 comments:

That’s some blood. When did Taker blade?

Grade: C

The bell rings as Kennedy beats on Taker. He calls down the microphone and tells the audience that he is the winner. Undertaker grips his throat mid-Kennedy and attacks Kennedy in the corner. He gets the steel chair and busts Kennedy so hard I actually winced. The crowd chant “Holy shit!” and Kennedy is now bust open on the announcers table. Taker pulls Kennedy by his pants, botches a Tombstone Piledriver, removes his gloves and punches Kennedy with his exposed fists. JBL gives off for a while. Undertaker’s music plays and Taker gets the chair to hit Kennedy again but throws it down when Little Naitch removes Kennedy from the ring.

Replays of the infamous chair shots and botched Tombstone. Undertaker raises his hand on the ramp.

Backstage, Sharmell and Booker T remind us that this is Batista’s last chance match. Booker is mispronouncing words in an attempt to speak with an English accent. He says, “world,” like, “waaahl!”

MVP’s music hits and he walks to the ring with little fanfare, looking over his shoulder as his pyro hits… but only one flame keeps burning. JBL tells us that he is looking over his shoulder because of the last match. Yeah. We get it, Bradshaw.

Test’s music hits and HOLY FUCK IT’S ROIDY MAGOOOOO! I love Test, but I hate his body shape and his mental bachne. The man is dead. Look at that huge roid belly. Christ. Legend has it that his name is because he failed a roid test.

Umaga comes out with Armanda Alejandro Estrada.

Finlay follows with his shillelagh and it is removed from him by some crazy officials.

Big Show comes out very slowly. He is the ECW world champion and is the only man to have won ECW, WCW and WWE championships.

Rob Van Dam’s music hits and down he comes, stoned as all hell.

Sabu’s music hits and RVD actually does his point. Cheeky. Sabu is great. Let’s see what he botches today.

Bobby Lashley comes out, gets hit by pyro and his shoulder veins are mental. Jesus, the testosterone in this match.

Kane’s pyro hits and he comes out slowly… does he have a pierced bellybutton? It looks pierced.

The Champ Is Here! It’s my man John Cena! Look at him, all happy and shit. I love Cena. He raps his own theme song. Two fans in the front row also love Cena as Umaga is freaking out over the lights and music. Jesus, it must be awful for him. Poor buck. I love how they let Cena’s music go until the first chorus before they cut it off.

Survivor Series match: Team Cena (John Cena, Kane, Bobby Lashley, Sabu and Rob Van Dam) def. Team Show (Big Show, Test, Montel Vontavious Porter, Finlay and Umaga (w/ Armando Alejandro Estrada) via elimination in 12:35.

Umaga squares off against Cena and the Samoan hits our boy with a few punches before knocking Sabu and RVD off the apron. Cena clotheslines Umaga out and goes on Finlay. On the outside, Umaga is messing with a monitor, runs in and cracks everyone with it, disqualifying himself like an idiot. Schmoz soon follows.

Umaga has been disqualified in 58 seconds.

He doesn’t even make it to the one-minute mark. What an idiot. In the ring, Bobby and Kane throw everyone out until order is resumed. Finlay and RVD face off but roid-belly Test jumps in. Test catches RVD’s jump off the turnbuckle and Finlay comes in to work on Van Dam. The crowd are chanting for RVD but that doesn’t stop Finlay… and it certainly doesn’t stop a douche in the crowd doing Hulk Hogan poses.

MVP is in and RVD is bleeding from the mouth. Lots of blood tonight. JR tells us that Van Dam has “educated feet”, which is definitely a phrase I will be using in the future. Van Dam springs about until Test runs in and is thrown out. Finlay takes a wicked kick to the head and Show takes one to the knee. Bacne Test drags Van Dam out and tosses him against the ring post. In the ring, Kane slips in and chokeslams MVP. Van Dam hits the five-star frogsplash on MVP and pins him for the elimination.

MVP has been eliminated by RVD in 5:31.

Test fires in, gives ould RVD the big boot and eliminates him.

RVD has been eliminated by Test in 5:47.

Sabu slides in, hits the schoolboy on Test and Test botches the kickout but it doesn’t count. On the outside, Bobby spears Test and Sabu hits the leg drop over the rope, DDT and finally the pin.

Test has been eliminated by Sabu in 6:19.

Sabu points to the sky. Big Show pops in, hits the body slam and eliminates Sabu.

Sabu has been eliminated by Big Show in 6:35.

Kane and Show face off. Show goes to chokeslam Kane and the pair hold each other’s necks for some time. Hornswoggle slides in, stands between the two and disappears back under the ring. Finlay runs in, hits Kane with the shillelagh, allowing Big Show to finish the chokeslam and get the pin.

Kane has been eliminated by Big Show in 7:26.

And now it’s two-on-two: Cena and Bobby vs. Show and Finlay. Cena runs in, beating on Show and getting a huge powerslam for his effort. Finlay jumps in and leg drops Cena’s belly for some reason. Finaly harasses Lashley and as the ref is distracted, Big Show beats on Cena and bullies him. Huge slaps to Cena’s chest. Absolutely monstrous. Finlay is tagged in and a great shoulder barge to Cena. Finlay goes to Bret’s rope, but it is countered by Cena. Hot tag to Bobby and a fisherman’s suplex that Show interrupts. Show runs in and Cena and Lashley double-team him but he double-teams them on his own!

The Hornswoggle comes in and it all goes to hell for a while and in the mix, Finlay is pinned.

Finlay has been eliminated by Bobby Lashley in 10:28.

Big Show and Lashley fight once the little bastard leaves. Cena is tagged in to huge boos and a double DDT on Big Show for a two-count. Cena attempts to suplex the Big Show and Lashley comes over to help. Cena goes for the Five-Knuckle-Shuffle and gets mad boos once again. Show goes to chokeslam Cena but Lashley spears him. Cena then give Show a monstrous FU and gets the pin.

Big Show has been eliminated by John Cena in 12:35. The survivors are John Cena and Boby Lashley!

2016 comments:

Not amazing. Some very fast eliminations but none of them are very exciting, sadly.

2006 comments:

SuperCena.

Grade: C

Cena and Lashley celebrate. During the replay we see that one fan just had his fingers in the air, shaking his head and saying, “no, no, no,” to himself like a mental smark.

Back to JBL and Cole as we approach the main event: Batista versus King Booker for the World Heavyweight Championship.

Bit of a promo where people say “all Hail King Booker,” a lot. Batista comes off as a real babyface here as he drags his way through a shitty promo. Big music in the background for these two men, making it seem like a real hero vs villain affair.

Teddy Long is talking to the ring with his mad arms waving. He reminds the crowd that Batista signed the “royal declaration”, which is apparently legally binding. Teddy says that he is adding an extra stipulation: titles can now change hands on the count-out or DQ… at least if it happens to King Booker. JBL tells us: “We are going to have a winner or we will have a loser tonight.” Fucking idiot.

Batista comes out, running and hitting his big babyface pop with the pyro. Someone has a sign that says, “We want Lesnar.” No. No one wants Lesnar.

King Booker’s music comes on… and we have confetti? Gold confetti? Is Goldust in the house? Oh, man, if Goldust turned up here I would lose my shit. I love me some Goldust.

Batista, obviously infuriated with King Booker’s blatant infringement of Goldust’s gimmick, runs out and beats on him in the aisle. Both men make their way to the ring and the bell has not even started the match yet! Get in the ring, boys, c’mon! You’re letting the side down. The ref tells them both to get into the ring and the bell finally calls.

Last Chance match for the World Heavyweight Championship: Batista def. King Booker (c) (w/ Queen Sharmell) via pinfall in 13:58.

Batista goes for the pin right away but fails to get anything other than a kickout. Booker takes over and is quickly beat upon by the Animal. They go around the corners for a while and a great suplex in the middle of the ring by Batista forces Booker to roll out of the ring and consider leaving before he remembers that a countout will result in him losing the match. He goes back in and is quickly worked on by Batista who awkwardly hits a ribreaker. JBL threatens that this match may go on for thirty minutes. Let’s hope that it does not. Booker drops Batista on his neck and works him over.

Booker hits a slingshot on Batista, ramming his throat into the bottom rope. He then hits the superkick but gets only a three count for his efforts. Booker cracks Batista a few times in the corner and Sharmell shouts his name. Brilliant heel. Best heel.

Batista gives Booker a handful of slaps and hits a great jackhammer cuplex in the middle of the ring. Goldust is lying everywhere. He’s been here. Batista catches Booker with a swinging Bossman Slam. Batista and Booker fight on the apron and as Booker is thrown in, Sharmell grips Batista’s foot, distracting him enough for Booker to superkick him into the barricade. Batista’s head is bounced off the steel steps and Batista is rolled back in the ring. Booker goes for the pin with his foot on the rope but gets only a two.

Booker is in control as JBL calls Teddy Long a racist because he dislikes Booker. Black on black crime, huh?

Booker hits the jumping kick but still fails to get the pin on Batista. The announcers are reminding the audience of the stipulations as Sharmell is riling up the crowd. Batista gets mental chants as he climbs to his feet and finally beats on Booker, taking over and hitting a belly-to-belly suplex on the King. Booker takes some wonderfully powerful clotheslines and a big boot to the face that knocks him out of the ring. Batista takes the time to throw Booker into the steel steps. Batista rolls back into the ring then goes to the top rope to hit the shoulder barge. A big man actually hits a top-rope move! What?!

A huge spinebuster gets only a two-count. It’s heating up now as Booker hits the Bookend but Batista kicks out at two. Booker’s mouth is bust but Batista hits the Batista bomb, goes for the pin in one, two, Booker kicks out. Sharmell slides over, hands Booker the title. Batista goes to hit Sharmell with the Batista Bomb and Booker attempts to hit him with the title. Batista ducks the attack, takes the belt, cracks booker with it and wins the championship in 13:58.

2016 comments:

I, for once, agree with JBL: this is a hollow victory.

2006 comments:

Did… Did Batista just turn heel?

Grade: B

Batista is happy about winning but the success seems empty, somehow. Even the crowd feel the same, with little being excited over this. Shameful way to end the PPV.

The Go Home Stats.

Man of the Matches: No matches were wonderful except for the one with [REDACTED] Benoit so he wins it.

Woman of the Matches: The women’s match was crap but Lita retired so I will pick her.

Montel Vontavious Porter Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence: Lita!

Best Spot: Jesus Christ, John Cena’s FU to Big Show.

Hatches: Mike Knox, Arn Anderson, Ron Simmons, Test.

Matches: [REDACTED] Benoit retained his WWE United States Championship, Mickie James won the WWE Women’s Championship for the second time, Batista won the World Heavyweight Championship for the second time.

Dispatches: None.

On The Card Hall Of Fame

Every “Big Four” PPV (Wrestlemania, Summerslam, Survivor Series, Royal Rumble) I will choose a man and woman to be inducted into the hall of fame. A man and woman must have been named either a Man of the Matches or Woman of the Matches in the previous months since the last “Big Four” PPV. Once a man or woman is inducted, they may not be inducted again but can still win Man of the Matches or Woman of the Matches. Through this, we can course the dizzying highs and savage lows of the wrestling landscape throughout the years. If no one new has been given the title of Man or Woman of the Matches, then a candidate will be chosen from the highest-rated matches since the last “Big Four” PPV. If no one is to be found there, then we go to the next highest-rated matches and so on. If we (unlikely) get to the bottom of the pile, then the Hall of Fame will remain empty to show the excellent calibre of the wrestlers and shallow roster.

Previous Men of the Matches: Shawn Michaels.

Nominated for Man of the Matches: John Cena, Edge, Carlito and [REDACTED] Benoit, [REDACTED] Benoit.

The Winner and Entrant to the Hall of Fame is… [REDACTED] Benoit for being a great lad in the ring.

Previous Women of the Matches: Queen Sharmell.

Nominated for Woman of the Matches: Trish Stratus, Queen Sharmell, Queen Sharmell, Lita.

The Winner and Entrant to the Hall of Fame is… Trish Stratus for being terrific.

Closing Statements: Survivor Series 2006 was a weak, weak PPV with very little exciting matches and its only real draws were the star-studded elimination matches that were about five minutes too long.

On the Card will return on December 3 2016 with the ECW PPV December to Dismember 2006.

Ruthless Aggression #9. Cyber Sunday (Nov 5, 2006) Part 1

The Ruthless Aggression Era was a time when the WWE roster was so huge and so varied that they had no way of continuing storylines each week on their two main shows – RAW and Smackdown – and so they created the draft where wrestlers and announcers would be drafted onto either one of the two shows. Smackdown wrestlers would not (usually) be able to appear on Raw or interact with Raw wrestlers and vice versa.

Ten years ago, on November 5, 2006, the PPV Cyber Sunday aired. It was a Raw PPV, and the first Raw PPV since Unforgiven way back in September. Personally, the PPV came at a time where I had grown weary with professional wrestling, confused by the sheer number of wrestlers and unwilling to spend so much time per week watching hours of footage and trawling through shows, replays, promos and matches. I simply watched the PPVs. Over the next four weeks, I will review this PPV from the perspectives of a fan looking back at it after a decade as well as my original thoughts as a younger man watching it at the time.

Cyber Sunday 2006

Log On. Take Over.

Alright! Now we’re talking! Now that is a tagline worth fighting for! And the poster featured the diminutive Maria stepping into an old CRT monitor over what looks to be a keyboard without symbols. The gimmick of Cyber Sunday was that fans could vote online for different stipulations to each match, which was moderately exciting.

Let’s jump right into it. The DVD has mouse icons to select your match. Great stuff. Bit disappointed that they are pointing in the wrong direction, however, but I can let that slide today, WWE. The opening video informs us that over 10 million fans voted online during Cyber Sunday. We get to choose the partner, adversary, rules, challenger, special guest referee, which title is on the line. It ends with the line, “Come see what you’ve created!”

That’s passing the buck a little there, Mister World Wrestling Entertainment. If the card is shite, don’t blame me. I don’t even think I voted.

Raw presents WWE Cyber Sunday and the big pyro tells us that it has begun! Loads of signs out there today as Jumping Jim Ross and Jerry “The King” Lawler invite us to the US Bank Arena, Cincinnati, Ohio for the very first, most interactive PPV of all time, ever, so far. 7,000 in attendance, which is a low number, but with 228,000 PPV buys, I don’t think many people will be weeping. Jerry is actually on the laptop when JR tells us that 14.5 million people have voted. Christ alive. If only even ten percent of that number bought tickets, it would be a great day. Unfortunately, little over 1.5% seemed to buy tickets. My maths might be off on that because I’m not a huge nerd.

The camera pans to my legit favourite Spanish Announcers (I know that’s a bit of a controversial statement in this day and age, but I stand by it) Hugo Savinovich and Carlos Cabrera. If you just watch Savinovich when Cabrera is speaking, it is hilarious. He looks like a man who knows little Spanish outside of what he learnt in school and he is trying to piece what Cabrera is saying together from simple sentences… and then he just explodes with wonderful, fluent dialogue AND THEY AREN’T EVEN CUT OFF THIS TIME. PRAISE BE.

(Note: Before the PPV began, there was a dark match featuring Super Crazy and Rob Conway. It lasted about three minutes.)

First match is featuring Umaga. The crowd cannot care less. They boo, they roar, they bellow. Umaga is the “host” of the match and his “guest” is to be chosen and voted by the audience… from a list of three. So, basically, the result will never change because the challenger (or “guest”, if you prefer) will always win or always lose. This is just deciding who gets a payday and who doesn’t. It would be interesting if all three wrestlers backstage get the payday as they would have to turn up, get into gear, warm up, run over a match with Umaga and then one would do it… unless the voting was rigged and these people were told in advance whether or not to come in either because the people in charge of the voting pulled the results early or didn’t give a shit about the results and just pulled the choice from their asses. Either way, you’d be furious if you travelled for hours, sat around backstage, got suited and booted and then ended up having to go home empty handed… let’s watch and find out.

Todd Grisham and Maria are up by the Titantron to announce the results of the votes. Maria, fresh from her adventure into Cyberspace, has no idea how to dress. He tells us nearly 15 million votes were cast. Maria rocks through her lines as best she can despite her obvious brain injury. Backstage, we see the three lads up for it. We have Kane, my one-time favourite wrestler, at this moment in time just a big bald baby; Chris [REDACTED] Benoit, the US Champ, standing there and planning his eventual fall into WWE-imposed obscurity; and Sandman, who is a cunt.

They ask for a drumroll. They get one. The results are in, over 14,300,054 votes worldwide (which means the total number of votes has to have been 14,300,055) and the winner is Kane with 49%! Well done K-

Wait, what the fuck? Let me look at those results more clearly. Sandman got 28%? And [REDACTED] got 23%? What the fuck? Who wouldn’t want to see my boy, Canuck Crossface himself?

Wrestling makes no sense sometimes.

Kane does an evil wee smile and moves from backstage towards the ring. The pyro goes off as our boy, the Undertaker’s evil demon brother makes his way to the ring for some more pyro. Double pyro.

Umaga (w/ Armanda Alejandro Estrada) def. Kane via pin in 8:39.

Kane goes after Estrada on the apron and Umaga takes the time to run and attack Kane like the coward he is. Kane and Umaga smack and slap each other senseless and Kane hits a few great right hands there followed by a choke on the turnbuckle. The ref tries to break it up and Kane goes after him. Umaga headbutts Kane and JR points out that Umaga, as a Samoan, must have a very hard cranium. Good old fashioned hard-headed foreigners. Umaga hits Kane with a great belly-to-belly suplex and Kane does his brother’s sit-up but Umaga kicks him back down. As Kane is getting up, he hits a few right hands and runs the ropes only for Umaga to hit a spinning heel kick on him.

The crowd chant for Kane and he rallies, hitting the Irish whip and Big Boot but getting a facebuster for his effort. Great “Remember, Remember, the fifth of November” sign in the crowd (V for Vendetta came out earlier in the year, so I doubt we have some British history buffs in Cincinnati tonight) as JR mentioned that Umaga cannot really wrestle: “he can brawl, but can’t wrestle.” Big words, JR. Wait til the Samoan Bulldozer gets wind of that. You’re fucked. JR points out that he knows Umaga likes to hurt people and King says that Estrada likes to watch. Kinky.

Lovely body slam from Umaga and the big lad goes to Bret’s rope to hit the flying headbutt but Kane kicks out. Umaga berates the referee for not counting quickly enough. JR mentions the thickness of Umaga’s thighs and Jerry says, “ain’t seen legs like that since the Brontosaurus died out.” Umaga hits a Rikishi-like arse-attack. On the outside, Umaga attempts the Samoan Spike but Kane dodges and the thumb hits only a ringpost. Kane takes over with some lovely offence including a throw into the steel steps, neck shots, a ten-punch in the corner that goes over and above. Kane then headbutts Umaga and hits the clothesline. Umaga looks fucked and a second clothesline puts him onto the ropes but Umaga reverses an Irish whip, hits the Samoan drop and as he is celebrating, Kane sits up, gets ready for the chokeslam but Umaga rakes the eyes. Backdrop and Kane calls for… wait… is he going top-rope? You know that’s bad news. Estrada goes to push him off, but is thrown off himself. Kane goes airborne with a double-axe-handle-nothing and Umage spikes him once in mid-air and once again for the pin in 8:39.

2016 comments:

Probably one of the better Umaga matches I’ve seen. Kane has a habit of putting on average matches and his gimmick is far better than his skill as a wrestler, but he had a great match here. Good opener.

2006 comments:

How do they let the cheating manager by the ring each and every time? Don’t they ever learn?

Grade: B

Umaga celebrates by looking at the crowd and then going to Spike Kane again but he escapes before that is possible. Estrada’s hair is mental. Umaga’s winning streak is impressive considering his stupid gimmick and even worse finishing move.

Cut to the Big Show backstage. He bumps into Queen Sharmell who tells him that being the Champion of Champions isn’t the best thing… it’s keeping the status quo. She suggests that if Show’s title is on the line or Booker’s title is on the line, he and Booker should unite to ensure that it does not change hands… but if John Cena’s title is on the line… well, it’s just everybody for himself then, isn’t it? Big Show says that Sharmell is the most beautiful queen he has ever seen (and she is lovely) but he does not trust either Sharmell or Booker. He is about to copy Rock’s “take that x, shine it up real nice and stick it-“ but Sharmell walks off.

Cryme Tyme come out. Wasn’t a huge fan of Cryme Tyme because they seemed like what a white person thought black people were like, but apparently the guys, JTG and Shad Gaspard, were down with it because they were actually parodying what a white person thinks black people are like. This is very meta. I can’t really think too hard about this.

Then out comes the World’s Biggest Love Machine, Viscera and Charlie Haas. Of course, Viscera is also the world’s biggest botch machine. Wasn’t Mark “Sexual Chocolate” Henry supposed to be using this gimmick? Didn’t he get Mae Young pregnant and she gave birth to a hand? So many questions, none of them involving Big Daddy V. I always had a soft spot for Viscera.

The Highlanders are here! Jerry attempts a Scottish accent and JR uses the term “referendum”, which is due to cause tears amongst the Scots.

Droning guitar and out come Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch. There isn’t much to say about them other than the fact that they’re from Texas… maybe? They’re a cheap Smoking Gunns, that’s all I have to say.

Cut to Maria and Todd. Todd reminds us of the match that happened seconds ago and that he doesn’t even know what type of match this is going to be. Maria does. It’s a tag team match. Well done, love. She is excited, though, so excited! So excited that Todd needs to remind her how excited she is. Why is she excited? Because the options are… Fatal Four way… Tag Team Turmoil… or Texas Tornado.

What are the differences? Fatal 4-Way is an elimination match. Tag Team Turmoil is that two tag teams start and when one is defeated, another takes its place until three teams have been eliminated. Texas Tornado is a schmoz.

The results are in… 50% to a Texas Tornado. And the schmoz begins instantly.

Texas Tornado Match: Cryme Tyme def. The Highlanders, Charlie Hass and Viscera, and Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch via pin in 4:28.

And what a schmoz it is. I used to love matches like this when I were kinder because they were so hectic and it looked like an actual fight. As I grew older and wearier, however, I stopped enjoying them as much and such is the case today, I assume. Cryme Tyme and Charlie Haas/Vicera are mid-ring while Highlanders and Lance Cade/Trevor Murdoch are outside. Shad and Viscera (“Big Vis,” as JR calls him) are mid-ring and Shad rolls away from a big Senton Splash from Viscera. JTG and Shad do a strange catapult job. Cade and Murdoch roll Cryme Tyme out after a sweet neckbreaker combo and The Highlanders come in, throw each other about for a while and take over the shift.

Very fast paced as both Cade and Murdoch are removed. Stereo suicide dives to the outside from the Highlanders. Haas and JTG are in the ring. Haas boots JTG in the head and the Cryme Tymer fights back with a lovely jumping dropkick. Charlie replies with a wonderful German Suplex. Shad is in with a Big Boot and Viscera defends his teammate. Shad has him beaten until Viscera Bossman Slams him. He then gyrates mid-ring. Sexy. Viscera barges both Haas and Shad in the corner and his booted out of the ring by stereo dropkicks from The Highlanders. Cade and Murdoch are in and beat Robbie with a pair of double team moves but Cryme Tyme slither in and both pin Robbie for the win in 4:28.

2016 comments:

Spotfest as all wrestlers roll through their team-ups. Not a lot of variation here other than Highlanders and Lance/Cade with Cryme Tyme and Haas/Viscera.

2006 comments:

Match of the year if they’d only had weapons.

Grade: C

Cryme Tyme wave to JR and Jerry. Sychophants. They then jump on the announcer’s desk and try to dance with the announcers. It is embarrassing. Jerry and JR fist bump and JR points out that Jerry’s laptop is missing BECAUSE CRYME TYME STOLE IT BECAUSE RACISM.

On the Card will return on November 12th with the second part of Cyber Sunday 2006.

Ruthless Aggression #7. Unforgiven (Sept 17, 2006) Part 1

The Ruthless Aggression Era was a time when the WWE roster was so huge and so varied that they had no way of continuing storylines each week on their two main shows – RAW and Smackdown – and so they created the draft where wrestlers and announcers would be drafted onto either one of the two shows. Smackdown wrestlers would not (usually) be able to appear on Raw or interact with Raw wrestlers and vice versa.

Ten years ago, on Sept 17, 2006, the PPV Unforgiven aired. It was a Raw PPV, and the first Raw PPV since Vengeance back in June. Personally, the PPV came at a time where I had grown weary with professional wrestling, confused by the sheer number of wrestlers and unwilling to spend so much time per week watching hours of footage and trawling through shows, replays, promos and matches. I simply watched the PPVs. Over the next four weeks, I will review this PPV from the perspectives of a fan looking back at it after a decade as well as my original thoughts as a younger man watching it at the time.

Unforgiven 2006

There was no tagline this time either, though it seems that taglines are a relic from the past. It is nice that WWE is moving forward rather than focussing on old, broken, useless things to achieve ratings, he said pointedly.

After ye olde wrasslin’ video, we see Vince’s big angry face as their reign of pranks continue: spray-painting a green DX on the side of an airplane and spray-painting a green DX on the side of a limo. This forces Vince to order the Big Show to join him and Shane in Hell in a Cell versus Hunter and Shawn at Vengeance. We see Edge being angry at John Cena and calling for a Tables, Ladders and Chairs match with the big man with the stipulation being that if Cena loses, he must go to Smackdown. There are five other matches on the card including Kane and Umaga, that match that was teased at the SummerSlam match between DX and the McMahons and Trish Stratus making her big PPV return against Lita (who was absent from the promo). And the thing is that the DX/McMahon match is mid-card. It’s not even co-main event!

Pyro hits we see the jam-packed Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario. 16,105 people in attendance, almost twice that of last year’s Unforgiven which had 8,000 in attendance and is about equal to last month’s SummerSlam, which had 16,168. 307,000 PPV buys, a huge boost from the 252,000 buys last year. Our announcers are Jumpin’ Jim Ross and Jerry “The King” Lawler. Jerry mentions something about a home field advantage, which is funny because at first glance, unless someone is a secret Canuck (the greatest betrayal), the only Canadians on the card are Trish and Edge. JR introduces the Spanish announcers, the incomparable Hugo Savinovich and Carlos Cabrera. As usual, they are cut off because Johnny Nitro and Melina are more important than the Hispanic population.

 (Note: Before the PPV began, there was a dark match featuring Super Crazy and Shelton Benjamin. Upset that these two amazing players are off the main card. I will see if any of these matches are equivalent to even one minute of Super and Shelton.)

Generic music hits and down rocks the curtain twitcher Johnny Nitro with Melina. Melina does not seem to know who to manage these days, but if we get to see Johnny work then I’m okay with that. The red carpet is rolled out, the cameras are flashing and Gorilla Position is behind a huge big UNFORGIVEN sign so they have to awkwardly step around it. Johnny Nitro won the Intercontinental Championship at Vengeance in an absolutely fantastic match with Shelton Benjamin and Carlito. By Christ, it was great. JR is appalled by the “symbolism of the Intercontinental Belt dangling,” between the legs of Johnny as it gets kissed by Melina.

Hardy music hits and out comes mental Jeff, doing a weird dance and probably winged off his nut, as is Jeff’s wont these days. Brother loves his drugs. JR mentions Hardy’s unexplained absence where he was released from the Fed for: erratic behaviour, drug use, refusal to get help, looking shabby, lateness and no-showing events. He went to the indie circuit and then TNA before returning to the Fed… until he would fail drug tests and eventually leave for TNA in 2010, never to return to the Fed (so far). Jeff is squaring up to Johnny, one of his legit best friends. The crowd cheer for Hardy. It’s very nice.

WWE Intercontinental Championship match: Johnny Nitro (c) (w/ Melina) def. Jeff Hardy via pin in 17:36.

In the ring, Johnny and Jeff are locking up, pushing each other into the corner. A boo rises when Johnny tries to escape. Brilliant arm drag from Johnny. Both guys are great lads and big friends so this match is going to be great. Just as I say that, Johnny botches a backdrop reversal. JR calls Melina evil. Great arm drag from Jeff and Johnny pushes him into the corner. Irish whip to the other corner, Jeff jumps when he hits the turnbuckle. The smoke from the pyro has not cleared yet. Another arm drag takedown from Jeff. Jesus, man, arm drag city. Melina screams. Fuck off. Backslide from Jeff followed by double leg drop to Johnny’s navel and Johnny calls for a time out and shouts at the crowd.

Back in the ring, Johnny beats on Jeff in the corner and he tries to jump over Jeff, fails, gets a dropkick and a ten count for his trouble. Melina is holding her chest in pain as if she, herself, was hurt. Maybe Melina and Johnny have some sort of ET-style bond? Jeff goes up top and the crowd start to cheer. They know that a Swanton is coming… but so does Johnny and he rolls out. Jeff hits a baseball slide through the women’s rope and follows it up with a run across the barricades to a cross-body. He goes top rope and Nitro dropkicks Jeff’s legs! Brilliant. Then he gets Jeff into some sort of knee lock.

Johnny has one of Jeff’s leg and Hardy goes for the enziguri, misses and Johnny smashes his knee off the mat, goes for the pin and gets only a two. Johnny then beats on Jeff’s leg as Melina screams some more. An Irish whip fails because Jeff sells the leg so well and stumbles before hitting the rope. Good man, Jeff. Melina screams some more. Johnny jumps over the top rope, battering Jeff’s leg as he lands. Jeff is caught in some modified leglock, close to the ropes and doesn’t bother breaking it. Botched drop on Jeff’s knee and Nitro gets boos. The pace has really slowed down and the crowd tell Nitro that he sucks. JR agrees with them.

The pace is so very slow and the match is so very long that the audience can be forgiven for not getting into it. As Jeff fights back, the crowd rouses but Johnny knocks Jeff to the ground with a shoulder barge onto his knee. Johnny attempts a corkscrew moonsault and botches it, landing badly. However, to get the heat back, both men are up and uninjured. Quick pin and count of three. Both men are sandbagging their moves and Hardy hits a corkscrew moonsault of his own, landing it as best he can for a quick pin and two-count. This is what the crowd want: death defying risk-taking moves. Nitro goes for the top-rope hurricanrana, Jeff holds on and follows it up with a Swanton Bomb but doesn’t get the pin as Nitro’s foot is on the ropes.

Jeff goes for Twist of Fate but is countrered. Despite the fact that both men are friends, they are just screwing each other over with this match. Nitro works on Hardy’s knee and the crowd chant, “Let’s go Hardy! Let’s go Nitro!” Jeff gets to the rope, kicks Nitro away and he hits Melina on the apron by mistake. Nitro hits back, hitting the flying huricanrana that Jeff reverses into a powerbomb. Melina cracks Jeff in the face with her boot as the ref’s back is turned and Johnny Nitro gets the pin and win in 17:36.

2016 comments:

Unnecessarily long opening match for what it was. Neither of these men are great psychologists in ring and their style is fast, high-flying and high tension. It should have been near fall after near fall, almost a spotfest, but it was an attempt to make a main event match with a screwy ending. Very disappointed in both these men.

2006 comments:

The Hardys should never do singles matches and should never do matches that don’t involve ladders.

Grade: B-

Melina is selling her hurt leg as Nitro retains and Hardy loses. Replays of Nitro’s win and Hardy looks proper upset.

Cut to John Cena in The Marine with Robert Patrick and John Cena is blackface which is slightly racist. Not much to be said there.

Back in the ring, Teddy Long has his own seat in the skybox.

Bakcstage, Fat Matt Hardy congratulates Jeff for a good match. Lita turns up and rubs Jeff’s loss, her upcoming match against Trish and Edges upcoming match against Cena in both their faces.

Straight-up Shoot Fact: It is a truth universally acknowledged that a man in possession of a girlfriend in wrestling must be in want to make her a wife lest she plays around and vice versa. I refer you to Sunny who cheated on Chris Candito until his death, or Triple H cheating on Chyna with Stephanie. In the case of the Matt/Lita/Edge storyline, Lita was with Matt and cheating on him with Edge. The WWE responded by firing Matt as both Lita and Edge were popular. After going to ROH, Matt returned and turned the real-life drama into a storyline. Edge, reportedly, hated hurting Matt and didn’t enjoy the storyline. It’s hard to feel bad for him because of what he did but it takes two to tango… or three in this case.

Cut to the ring and we see the Hell in the Cell above the ring. Out comes Umaga, the talentless and slightly racist fuck along with Armando Alejandro Estrada. Umaga is undefeated. AAE has the mic and introduces himself and the crowd chant along with him. Umaga rabbles into Estrada’s face. Estrada makes fun of our man Kane by asking the crowd if they believe that he is a monster. He bigs up Umaga as being a monster. JR makes fun of him, saying, “That may have neem the world’s longest introduction.”

Kane’s pyro hits and the man himself walks down, weighing a few more pounds than he normally goes, but still looking great. I like Kane. He stares at Umaga and the bell rings.

Kane vs. Umaga ends in double count out in 7:03.

JR says that this might not be a “Brisco/Funk classic with arm drags and headlocks,” and it is a true statement. Kane and Umaga start off beating each other and Kane hits Umaga with a big boot, Umaga replies with a jumping heel kick, to which Kane sits up supernaturally like his brother. Kane is knocked out of the ring but is so tall he lands on his feet. He bullies Estrada for a while, stealing his jacket, and gets by a Russian leg sweep. Umaga is quite fast this match and is showing off his best. In the ring, Umaga beats on Kane for a while, getting him in the corner to batter on his face. Umaga then hits Kane with a running stinkface. Estrada is on the apron and calls for the Samoan Spike but Kane fights back, forced into the corner by Umaga, where he gets punched before finally getting Umaga in the corner and slapping the shit out of him.

Estrada has lost his hat.

Kane has difficulty knocking Kane down and gets a Samoan Drop for his trouble. Umaga threatens to hit the Samoan Spike off the top rope but Kane sits up in time, followed by a flying – yes, Kane goes to the top rope – clothesline. Kane grips Umaga’s throat, almost gets a chokeslam and the two scrap before Kane hits a belly-to-belly and throws Umaga out of the ring. The two fight into the crowd and the ref rings the bell to end the match by countout but until the match is officially ended, I’ll keep watching. The two men right over to the Titantron and smack each other backstage.

2016 comments:

A surprisingly good match from Umaga. He is still protected and you can see that either Kane would have won or Umaga would have had to get screwy, from the way the match was going. The countout was a crap way to end it. If the referee’s count had been important and the crowd would have counted along and maybe Kane and/or Umaga would have considered returning to the ring for the win but fought on because they hate each other, it would have been better, I like it for what it was, though.

2006 comments:

A good match… from Umaga? What next? A black president? Oh ho ho ho, what a silly concept.

Grade: B

Backstage, Vince is watching an episode of Raw where he pinned Triple H after whacking him over the head. He is very proud of himself. Vince asks Shane what the name of PPV is and he replies with “Unforgiven,” and Vince says, “It’s not WWE Forgiven, is it?” Vince slags off the entire country of Canada and then quotes his own theme song.

Cut to live in Toronto, outside the Air Canada Centre and a promo for the theme song for Unforgiven. Jerry says that they’re his favourite band and JR replies with, “I’m down with that, dog.” Classic JR. Vintage JR.

Cut to the Spirit Squad intro. They come out, jumping and hopping about to crazy sparklers. JR calls them, “Five boils on the tailbone of life,” which is harsh words since one of those boils is my boy Dolph Ziggler and I will have no mean words said about my boy D-Ziggles.

Straight-up Shoot Fact: Confusingly, as well as there being a SmackDown Championship (World Heavyweight Championship) and a Raw Championship (WWE Championship), there were also tag belts for SmackDown (WWE Tag Team Championship) and Raw (World Tag Team Championship. Why they didn’t just keep Raw with the World belts and SmackDown with the WWE belts is beyond me. In addition to that (and bear in mind that the next bit is confusing as shit) there was the Undisputed WWE Championship (before it became the WWE Championship) and the WWE Women’s Championship. Raw got the Intercontinental and European Championship and SmackDown got the Cruiserweight Championship and the Hardcore Championship before getting the United States Championship later. Then ECW got the ECW World Heavyweight Championship. Later, SmackDown made the WWE Diva’s Championship… Then the tag belts were unified as the Unified WWE Tag Team Championship before being renamed the WWE Tag Team Championship and then the Women’s Championship became unified with the Divas Championship and then, finally, the World Heavyweight Championship was unified with the WWE Championship to become the WWE World Heavyweight Championship (before becoming the WWE Championship in June of this year). Then there were a few renames and the introduction of the WWE Universal Championship. You got that?

Great sign in the crowd saying “Sissy Squad”. JR explains that Freebird Rules states that although all five members of the Spirit Squad are technically holders of the Tag Team Championship, only two may defend it at any given time.

Stereotypical Scottish music plays and down come The Highlanders, Robbie and Rory McAllister. As an Irish person living in Scotland, I have a great love for Irish and Scottish wrestlers (and am a huge fan of ICW, although I do not get to see them as much as I would like). They are billed from Oban, Scotland (which is a nice area) and weigh thirty-five stone, apparently, which is silly as Scotland uses the Metric system, so the men should have been weighed as 221kg. But sure.

The Highlanders are sold as the dumb foreigners. They rub their beards and point to the crowd and mutter incoherent words. I’m surprised they don’t have a fear of fire and carry women about over their shoulders. Rowdy Roddy Piper personally endorsed them as well, so you know they’re good as he doesn’t like anyone… other than Pat Patterson (allegedly).

World Tag Team Championship Match: The Spirit Squad (Kenny and Mikey) (c) w/ Mitch, Johnny, and Nicky def The Highlanders (Robbie and Rory McAllister) via pinfall in 8:59.

How much are we betting that this will be a screwy ending? Because only two of the Spirit Squad are wrasslin’ and the rest are outside, with our boy Dolph “Nicky” Ziggler on the apron already to give some support to Mikey in the ring. I’m not going to lie to you, I can’t tell these boys apart. Rory and Mikey (possibly) start off with Rory hitting a quick sunset flip but barely getting the two. They grapple and circle the ring for a while with Rory taking over quickly. There is a “foreigner has a hard head” spot where Robbie leans over the ropes and Rory tosses Mikey into the corner, hitting their heads and receiving no pop. Pin attempt and a two.

Rory twists Mikey’s arm and Robbie is in to give a number of headbutts to Mikey’s elbow. Rory hits a double axe handle nothing off the top rope and Robbie hits a jumping headbutt to Mikey’s already injured elbow but the SS member escapes and tags in Kenny. Double-team shoulder barge by the Highlanders and we have a repeat followed up by a revolving door of attacks in the corner with two slingshot nut shots.

Both Highlanders go to double team Kenny and he tags out so they beat on Mikey instead. Robbie is pushed into the corner where Kenny comes in and Robbie attempts a suicide dive through the ropes, is thwarted and… what did I say? He is beset upon by the rest of the Spirit Squad. Alas, this attack does not claim the win and the Spirit Squad beat on Robbie mercilessly. Great alley-oop moonsault by the Spirit Squad and Robbie gets hit by a great clothesline from the SS. Seeing as the Spirit Squad are male cheerleaders, it is nice and refreshing to see them using lots of athletic double-team moves on their opponents and using each other to propel their bodies into their enemies. Robbie is hit by a great double-team shoulder barge and Robbie is saved by Rory.

Robbie is going for the hot tag but gets naught from the Spirit Squad as they stop him at each turn. Kenny goes for a leg drop from the top rope and both teams go for the hot tag. Rory runs roughshod over the Spirit Suqad, sending them outside and hitting Kenny (I think) with a double slingshot inverter suplex which looks lovely. The Spirit Squad cheat an unknown member from the outside hits Rory from behind to get the pin in a weak 8:59.

2016 comments:

I know that I am biased, but I like the Highlanders and I don’t think that this match was particularly the best demonstration of their abilities as a tag team. Despite the Spirit Squad’s pain-in-the-ass demeanour, I like them too and I think they are brilliant as heels. This match was fun, had good psychology and was only let down by the pathetic, rushed ending.

2006 comments:

Scots? In America? What next? Women with the vote?

Grade: B

The World Tag Team champions win and celebrate and the foreigners leave angry. Nicky is really hamming it up and good job by him. JR says, “No matter where you’re watching this match, the math is the same,” in reference to the Spirit Squad’s five vs. the Highlanders’ two. JR is angry that the tag team champs are five male cheerleaders.

JR introduces the next match, one that he claims we have bought this PPV to see, one he describes as, “The most dangerous match in the history of the WWE, that is no exaggeration.” We see the old matchup card where all members have about five seconds of animation before freezing.

On the Card will return on September 24th with the second part of Unforgiven 2006.