Ruthless Aggression #5: The Great American Bash (July 23, 2006) Part 4

Previously on On the Card: Bra and panties.

Cut to the motherfucking Miz in his “hosting” duties backstage. He interviews Mr. Kennedy. Ken chews the scenery for a while so much so that his face goes red. The Miz appears unimpressed.

Batista’s music hits and the crowd pop for him. He’s wearing Bo Dallas white pants and jaws off to the crowd for a while before hitting his machine gun pyro. He is the epitome of mid-2000s wrestler. Pair of women behind him mime pinching his bum, as well, so fair play to both him and them. Batista was supposed to fight Mark Henry, but Henry suffered an awful injury and will be out for eight months.

Out comes Mr. Kennedy. No posturing here, just walks out like the gangster he is. As Kennedy points to the heavens, Batista gets a cheap shot in, starting the match.

Mr. Kennedy def. Batista via pinfall in 8:38.

You know that part of the movie where the hero is down on his lucky and he has one final Hail Mary shot at redemption? We’re talking about a final chance to score a goal (or touchdown as you yanks call it) or he puts all of his chips all in on one final hand of poker or she has one bullet left to take that shot? That’s where I was right before this match. This is my last shot because I quite like Mr. Kennedy and Batista and although I love Rey and Booker, their matches are never amazing, they are simply okay. So this is going to be my last shot at getting an A match after the first fantastic one.

Batista has Kennedy in the corner, bouncing him off turnbuckles, choking him. This looks like two men who want to have a fight, a fight, not a match. JR said that at one point during the HHH/Rock feud where Rock had made fun of Stephanie. This is not a match, this is a fight. Kennedy is bust open from the steel steps, apparently, and Kennedy had no real chance to blade, so it was probably legit. Batista is cracking Kennedy in the forehead, really getting the blood flowing. Kennedy goes to leave, turns and jaws off to Batista, pointing to his forehead and calling Batista a piece of garbage.

As he slips into the ring, Batista spears him. Reportedly, the wound on Kennedy’s head exposed his cranium! It’s impossible not to look for it during the match. Kennedy beats on Batista mercilessly and it is difficult to imagine that this isn’t because of the forehead injury, as one big long receipt. Batista gets a kick on the back of the head and wastes some time outside. Kennedy is in control right now and both men are trying to get the match over and done with as quickly as possible. Paradoxically, they get into a rest hold for a while and we get a nice shot of that exposed cranium. Took twenty stitches to close the wound!

The rest hold lasts for a while and Batista is trying to stand up as quickly as he can, his one arm shaking in anger. Kennedy’s wound seems to have stopped bleeding and he beats on Batista and the Animal retaliated with a choke hold followed by bunch of shoulder barges in the corner. Kennedy’s wound is reopened as Batista throws him into the corner and he hits his head again, pissing blood everywhere. Batista holds his boot on Kennedy’s throat and gets DQ’d in 8:38.

2016 comments:

Not a great match and my focus was on poor Kennedy’s head.

2006 comments:

Blood! Blood! Gallons of the stuff!

Grade: C

Batista hits Kennedy with three spinebusters as the bell rings. He follows this up with a Batista Bomb. He then rubs his hand over Kennedy’s forehead and smears himself in blood. He looks like an absolute monster, but his eyes are terrified, scared, haunted. The poor son of a bitch. Both of them are poor sons of bitches.

Remember my analogue earlier about the Hail Mary shot? Well this is the point in the movie where the heroes are up shit creek. The best they can hope for is an okay finish to this entire thing.

Lots of recaps of the blood from Kennedy’s face as the Animal looks on, genuinely concerned. Old Drax the Destroyer has a heart of gold, it seems.

We have a lovely recap of Booker T becoming King of the Ring, looking humble as usual. We see him winning the Battle Royale on SmackDown! to earn a match with our boy Rey. Rey is really sold as being an underdog champion because they never shut up about it. He 619’s Booker around the ring post and the King sells it like he’s been shot. Brilliant.

King Booker’s music hits as the man himself comes down on a weird float with a throne on it, driven by a God damned knight. Pyro goes off behind him and both Booker and Sharmell sell it like they are humble monarchs, waving to the booing crowd and smiling. JBL cunts it up, standing with his hat over his heart. Maggle is stupefied by this. Booker takes his time getting to the ring and the music is getting quite repetitive now. I want this entrance to last forever, but I want the music to stop. And I want JBL to stop too.

Rey’s music hits and out he comes, exploding from behind a moderately sized box. He’s facing it up, clapping hands on the way to the ring. He’s a more universally liked John Cena. Maggle and Rey argue about who is more deserving of the championship as the ring causes epileptic fits throughout the venue. Despite the boos, Booker is very humble during his introduction, thanking the crowd. Rey gets a big kiddie-pop and is called “The Master of the 619” amongst his other achievements. Booker squares up to Rey and yells, “Eddie can’t help you!” into his face.

World Heavyweight Championship match: King Booker T (w/ Queen Sharmell) def. Rey Mysterio (c) via pinfall in 16:46.

The crowd are chanting “Eddie! Eddie!” as the bell rings and Maggle fucks it up by calling Booker T the champion. Way to foreshadow, Freddy Foreshadowing. Rey looks like a child beside Booker, which is normal for the champ. Booker knocks Rey to the ground and kicks him mercilessly. Booker beats on Rey in the corner but he is reversed and Rey goes for the pin but gets a one. The crowd get another, “Eddie!” chant going. Some terrible knees from Booker followed by a bodyslam and a great Irish whip and clothesline.

Police pin city but Rey escapes, goes for a stunner and flips Booker over for some reason. Running of the ropes followed by hurricanrana and Rey gets Booker in a corner but receives an eye poke for his effort. Rey avoids a shoulder barge and Booker falls outside like a silly goose. Mysterio gives Booker a seated senton, smacking Booker in the face with his balls. Mysterio misses a Bret’s rope moonsault and a superkick takes the Mexican down. Booker hits Rey with a clothesline and gets a two-and-a-half pin. Booker responds by choking him on the ropes and as the ref berates him, Sharmell rakes Rey’s eyes. Booker gets Rey in an arm lock and boots him in the face. Cheeky.

Maggle does an actual good job of mentioning the chants and Rey attempts to repeat his stunner flip but is thwarted. Booker gives Rey a great suplex from the apron and references Eddie by holding on and repeating the suplex twice with a great spinaroonie at the end. The crowd chant, “619!”. Rey dodges a kick and fights back. He goes for the 619, Booker dodges and Rey gets only a two count. He goes to get another 619 but Sharmell trips him. The ref sees it and sends her from ringside. I like that spot as it evens out the match, but maybe we could have done with a few more Sharmell incidents to really rile the crowd up. Booker hits Rey with a brillian back drop before going to Bret’s rope with a stomp but Rey boots him in the face. Both men are down, Booker’s knee is injured.

Rey beats on Booker, goes for a great head scissors that sends Booker to the floor. A Bret’s rope cross-body and a shot of the crowd where one kid screams, “You can’t see me!” at the camera. At least… I think it was a kid. Honestly, I could have sworn it was just an empty space in the crowd…

Rey hits Booker with a DDT and gets a two count. It’s that part of the match where a wrestler farts and goes for a pin. The ref is knocked down as Booker tosses Rey across the ring, hitting the official. JBL states that Rey did that on purpose to be disqualified and keep the belt. Seated senton from Rey and Booker gets kicked with the 619, saunters over to the turnbuckle and frog splashes onto Booker. The referee is out, though, and as he goes to get the official, Booker low blows him, hits him with the Book End and gets a chair. He misses his shot and Rey jumps up, dropkicks Booker in the face. Out comes Chavo and you can smell it in the air… what is that scent? Oh, now I know! It’s… BETRAYAL!

Chavo predictably hits Rey in the face with the chair (and what a chair shot it is) and Booker goes for the pin, the referee rolls into the ring and hits the slowest pin in the world for Booker to win the match and championship in 16:46.

2016 comments:

An okay match from two okay competitors. Saw the Chavo angle coming miiiiles away, though, and the finish lacked the finesse that it required. If Booker had taken advantage of the chair shot to give Rey a Super Book End off the top rope or something similar, then it would have been different. As it was, the match lacked that special something.

2006 comments:

Did you hear that chair shot? Christ of almighty!

Grade: B

Booker cries mid-ring as JBL tells us that we cannot trust a Guerrero, which is a slightly racist but fairly obvious thing to say. Sharmell screeches, “All Hail King Booker!” into the mic about twenty thousand times. That and the repetitive music really grates. I love you Booker and I love you, Sharmell, but, by God, shut up. Come on.

We see one last shot of the chair shot that damn near killed Rey. What a chair shot. There’s a reason they don’t do them like that anymore.

The Go Home Stats.

Man of the Matches: I’m going to say Paul London because not only was it the best match of the card, but he took a fair pounding.

Woman of the Matches: The women’s match was pish and other than that, the only woman was Queen Sharmell, who was fantastic. So she gets it. The best woman in the PPV was the one who didn’t even compete. What does that tell you?

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

Best Spot: Irish whip to catapult to superkick combo from Carlito, Shelton Benjamin and Johnny Nitro.

Hatches: Jamie Noble, Kid Kash, William Regal, Fat Matt Hardy, Ashley Massaro, Michelle McCool, Mr. Kennedy, Batista.

Matches: King Booker defeated Rey Mysterio to begin is one and only World Heavyweight Championship title reign. Both Paul London and Brian Kendrick retained their WWE Tag Team Championship belts and Final retained his WWE United States Championship.

Dispatches: Simon Dean, Kid Kash.

Closing Statements: Another SmackDown! event where not much happens and it’s all quite embarrassing. I am completely okay with matches that experiment with style, such as the Punjabi Prison match, but anyone with half a brain would look at that and say, “Yeah, this won’t work. This sucks.”

On the Card will return on August 20 with the WWE PPV Summerslam 2006.

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Ruthless Aggression #5: The Great American Bash (July 23, 2006) Part 3

Previously on On the Card: The quality has dipped with a Finlay match but rose a bit with a Fat Matt Hardy match.

We have a promo showing the Judgment Day shitfest of Khali vs. Taker. Apparently that win means that Undertaker’s 16-year legacy is dismantled. We see Khali ruin everyone around him and then challenge Taker to a… Punjabi Prison match. Because Punjab is an absolute third world hellhole with bamboo as its main export and… oh wait, no, the GDP for Punjab is $47 billion and it has the lowest State Hunger Index in the whole of India. It is also one of the most fertile lands in India and is an area the size of Costa Rica, yet supports almost five times the population of that island. Hmm.

In terms of selling, I suppose they’re doing a great job of making Khali look like a monster, except that any single person who watches a Khali match knows that he is the drizzling shits.

Cuts to Daivari bigging up Show and Khali. Teddy Long is not happy about this nonsense and switches the match up so Big Show is fighting Undertaker instead of Khali. JBL says it’s not fair. The Punjabi prison is “awe-inspiring” according to Maggle. It’s just an octagon within an octagon made out of bamboo. There are reportedly “spikes” of bamboo at the top to stop people escaping. Maggle announces the rules. The interior structure has 4 doors that can be opened by one of four refs. The outer structure has no doors but the only way to win is escape both structures.

Big Show comes out and looks scared. Maggle says Show might cry. Show genuinely looks concerned about this. Unlike a Hell in the Cell or Steel Cage matches, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of potential here for great spots unless some of the bamboo is weakened so that they can be burst through.

The lights fade and Undertaker’s music hits. Big Show noticeably flinches. Great selling on his part. Out comes the man himself from Death Valley, smoke crawling over the damn floor. Brilliant stuff. Of course, Taker takes about half an hour to get to the damn ring anyways, enough time for Show to dry off from his altercation with Taker only minutes ago. Show looks genuinely scared. I wonder if it’s because this is the first match of its kind? He knows he needs to be out there for a while and they can’t fast forward a match if there’s a mistake because the rules are laid out that the only way to win is by escaping, no pinfalls or submissions. There is a table ringside with bamboo weapons. JBL is not happy about this. Lights are back on but the music still hits as Undertaker takes his coat and hat off. Big Show is visibly shaking.

The Undertaker def. The Big Show via escape in 21:35.

Big Show wastes little time in beating on Undertaker as soon as he enters the ring. Taker is caught on the apron between the ring and inner structure. Crowd chant for Undertaker while Big Show beats Taker back and forth until the Deadman begins to strike fast as hell including a slap to Show’s belly. The announcers remind the listeners of the rules to the match. The doors remain open for one minute. That’s a lot of time to escape and neither Taker nor Show are fast enough for that to be a huge threat.

Show throws Taker into the corner. The two men take part in a lot of strike moves. Taker goes to climb over the structure. Big Show runs after him, even though he could easily just walk to one of the doors and say, “Here buddy, go and open that bad boy up for me,” and he could be out before Undertaker even got over. There are weird straps hanging from each of the corners and Show chokes Taker on one.

This is slow, very slow and boring. There is no story here, no threat in this match. Big Show beats on Taker a while. Why? He should be escaping. Taker gets Show onto the apron and the side visibly wilts as he leans against it. Taker batters Show, threatening to knock him through but Show catches him and goes for the chokeslam but Undertaker reverses it into a DDT. Taker asks for the door to be open and Maggle helpfully tells us – about five minutes into the match – that once the one minute timer runs out, that door will be forbidden to open for the rest of the match. But there are four doors… so do they have four chances left?

Show takes a whip down and beats on Undertaker as JBL answers my question: apparently you have a chance with each door and if you fail then you need to go over the top. Show tries to remove the turnbuckle pads and fails. The pair run the ropes and Undertaker jumps, knocking Show down. Undertaker goes for Old School but is, predictably, thrown off the top. Big Show calls for the door to open and laboriously takes his time. Undertaker kicks him in the head and the two men pull at each other for a while. JBL calls this match, “The greatest test,” in Undertaker’s career. The biggest test is, of course, if his career survives this shitfest of a match. Show fails to escape the second door and laments its passing.

More beating in the centre of the ring. I see a theme here. Show exposes the turnbuckle pad and bounces Taker’s head off it. He is bust open and Show headbutts Taker to bust him the hard way. The fans shout, “Big Show sucks!” and, once again, Maggle acknowledges it! It is his sad attempt at getting the heel over, but all it is doing is making Show look like a prick. Shameful. Big Show attempts to climb out of the inner structure. Idiot. Undertaker hits him with a low blow. Big Show is gassed. Taker goes to the top rope with Show and gets him into a superplex position. Slowly, the 800lbs of humanity hits the mat and the crowd chant, “Holy shit!” and both announcers sandbag it by not reacting in any way.

Undertaker is outside, Big Show is inside and, predictably, just escapes through the final door. Big Show sets the chair up and throws Taker into it. All the bamboo weapons have been thrown away. Big Show then chucks Taker back into the ring and the door closes. No doors left! Show is outside! What will Taker do? Show is on the outside cage, Taker is on the inside. Taker quickly scales the wall and steps over the outside one. The pair of them Spider-Man for a while until Taker swings on a rope and kicks Show down. Undertaker then leg drops Show onto one of the other tables. Both men are bleeding from the blading and Show is being beaten by Undertaker mercilessly.

Undertaker climbs the interior cage and Khali arrives to boos. Undertaker jumps from one structure to the other, knocks Show through the side of the prison walls and gets the win in a very long 21:35.

2016 comments:

Awful.

2006 comments:

Worse than awful.

Grade: D

Not worth the 20 minutes, being honest with you. Give it ten minutes and add in some actual psychology. Big Show on his knees, blood on his fists and forehead like some Christ analogy.

Cut to our man King Booker as Sharmell tells him he’s better than Alexander, Napoleon and Julius Caesar. Those three men didn’t have to fight Rey Mysterio. When Booker wins, he, of course, will be King of the World. He roars it a few times.

Cut to moustachioed Maggle and gormless JBL as they attempt to put the shitshow we just watched over. They fail.

Then it’s the bra and panties match… yaaaay. Kristal Marshall comes out and Maggle tries to explain the background to this. Brilliant exploitation match. Down comes Mrs. Undertaker herself, Michaelle McCool, in her teacher getup with ruler and glasses. Then it’s Jillian Hall! She’s the only one wearing trousers. Finally, we have Ashley Massaro, who is the only one who looks like a face. The women are standing in the ring looking as stupid as they feel, wishing this could be over… all except for Ashley, who is $250,000 richer than the others because she was on Diva Search a few years previous.

Ashley Massaro def. Jillian Hall, Kristal Marshall and Michelle McCool via disrobement in 5:17.

It’s the women’s match! The match that we should all be doing something else during because it’s 2006 and women in wrestling weren’t going to become entertaining for another eight years or so. Yet, the Fed, those bastards, confuse all the mysogynists in the audience by making this match one about both boobies and butts! Oh the amount of burst bladders from this confusing combination is sure to be embarrassingly high.

The women look at each other for a while and circle slowly. Then there are some good attempts at spearing and butts are shown. Ashley is the first to have her top off and Kristal shows it to the audience but Ashley knocks her out of the ring. Michelle comes behind her and gives her a brutal backbreaker. Jillian is in behind her, wrenching at Michelle’s clothes, hitting a body slam before going to the top rope. Jillian falls into the tree of woe and her top is removed by Jillian.

JBL asks if there is a time limit. No, but there should be. Michelle hits Jillian with a weak slap. JBL gives off that Maggle calls the women, “great athletes,” with, “who cares if they are great athletes? They’re hot!” Jillian and Kristal are Irish whipped into one another and quickly lose their skirts… but Michelle is wearing a second skirt! The wily minx! The pair then roll about for a bit. Jillian shakes her breasts for a while and gets Kristal into an attempt of a catapult as Ashley removes Kristal’s top, getting the win in 5:17.

2016 comments:

It is depressing that this level of shit was ever in wrestling. Don’t get me wrong, I like a bit of smut as much as the next guy, but this carnival-style mud-wrestling crap is pathetic. The women are treated like objects, they are clearly wanting to get kudos in some way and never can. Give them an actual match, teach them how to sell, give them spots. I don’t care if the spots are a bit cheeky and we see their arses, but make it a wrestling match first and a titty fest second. Look at Lita. She’s a great wrestler who shows a bit of boob here and there. She is a wrestler first and a piece of meat second.

2006 comments:

You guys do realise the internet exists, right? It’s got all this stuff and better.

Grade: I refuse to grade this.

Gillian and Ashley shout mid-ring and both women celebrate… by disrobing each other. Awful. Maggle says, “This is what SmackDown’s all about!” Cunty.

On the Card will return on August 13 with the fourth and final part of The Great American Bash 2006.

Ruthless Aggression #5: The Great American Bash (July 23, 2006) Part 2

Previously on On the Card: We had a great tag match. Let’s hope this level of quality continues…

Cut to Khali and Daivari as the big man garbles in some attempt at language, his manager translates for the audience. Apparently Khali wants to call the Undertaker out now, before their match together. Khali then lifts Daivari up and the feed cuts to SmackDown General Manager Teddy Long coming out. He walks like a robot and wears his father’s suit. He tells the audience that he has some bad news. He tells the audience that Bobby Lashley has “elevated enzymes in his liver” and cannot compete.

As the crowd boos, out comes Lashley to a pop. He is dressed to compete and Cunt JBL says that Bobby is a coward. The crowd cheer for Bobby and the boy has difficulty talking. He also has tiny ears. I never noticed that before. Bobby says that there isn’t a damn thing wrong with him. Cut to a girl in the audience chanting, “Let him fight!”

Teddy tells Bobby that he wants Bobby to compete, but is thinking about Bobby’s health. Big boos from the crowd. Bobby goes to leave the ring, very upset about the entire thing. Finlay’s music hits and both he and Regal walk out and around Lashley. The entire thing is like a wet fart. Both Regal and Finlay shake hands with Teddy. The two men tell Teddy to raise Finlay’s hand in victory as Bobby has forfeit. Teddy then says that there will be a match for the US title and it will be between Regal and Finlay, right now.

JBL then says that the “elevated levels” remark is nonsense and that he, himself, has “a liver like Jake Roberts” and that he never had any problems. Absolute cunt.

WWE United States Championship match: Fit Finlay (c) def. William Regal via pin in 13:49.

I’m a huge fan of William Regal and I should be a huge fan of Finlay because we’re both Irish and he seems like an amazing guy, but I find it difficult to get behind his character. Nonetheless, I’m settling down to be entertained by these two young gentlemen (Finlay was about 47 at the time and Regal was 38, though the lifetime of drug abuse makes them look a similar age).

Regal rolls outside to see if The Little Bastard AKA Hornswoggle is under the ring. Finlay goes for a quick roll-up and Regal slaps him. JBL talks gibberish about the English and the Irish fighting each other, which is interesting because Finlay describes himself as an Irishman from Northern Ireland and straddles the two worlds of Irish and British politics. He doesn’t come across as a member of the IRA or even states that he has any Republican or Nationalist opinions. JBL, as usual, is a cunt.

The two men scrabble to the outside and walk about the place, hugging. The crowd are booing them because it appears boring. Michael states that Regal and Finlay have not fought in ten years and the last time they scrapped, Finlay suffered from a broken nose and cheekbone (or Finlay was responsible for Regal’s broken nose and cheekbone; Cole is not clear). Great tiltawhirl by Final and Regal tosses him outside followed by an uppercut by Regal. Hornswoggle appears and grabs Regal’s leg. A pantomime follows where Regal walks about with Hornswoggle chasing him with a shillelagh. Lots of kicks and punches in the ring.

Bunch of uppercuts for a while, which is the more exciting version of rest hold city. JBL starts giving off to Cole because he doesn’t know anything about Europe even though seconds ago, he was making fun of the Mexican announcers. What a c- you know that? I’m not even going to. If I have a buck for each time JBL is a cunt, I’ll be rich by the end of this. Hornswoggle appears again and bites Regal’s fingers. Finlay… pushes Regal’s hand into the ring ropes. Very weird. Some ground-based wrestling. JBL talks more nonsense about Irish history, saying that the six counties of Ireland took on the whole British Empire… which is… very wrong.

Finlay gets Regal into a rest hold and it lasts for some time. Both men are knocked down, butting heads before Regal walks all over Finlay, blocking the ref’s view as he keeps Finlay in a chokehold for ages. Very bad dropkick and lots of close counts. Regal hits a beautiful suplex followed by a dropped knee. The crowd chant, “Boooooring! Boooooring!” and Cole actually checks them on it! Motherfucker! Finlay beats Regal by the apron and the cover is removed from the side of the ring to expose the underside of the ring. Regal’s shoe has been removed, probably by Hornswoggle. Cole calls JBL a “goof”.

Regal gets the pin and almost gets the two-count. Regal goes for the shilleilagh and as the ref removes it from him, Hornswoggle appears, gives Final Regal’s boot and he cracks him with it to get the pin in 13:49.

2016 comments:

Awful, just awful. These two men can have a great match without interference. Hornswoggle cheapened the whole deal.

2006 comments:

I’m happy Finlay beat Regal but I’m unhappy that this match ever felt the need to take place.

Grade: C

Finlay’s belt gets stolen by Hornswoggle and he chases him about for a while before kicking him beneath the ring. Cole says, “This is absolutely ridiculous,” and it is. JBL says, “This is SmackDown!” and it is suddenly clear why WWE’s stock was falling at this point in time.

Back in the locker room, Rey Mysterio is having a wee chat to Chavo Guerrero Jr. Chavo tells Rey that he is an honorary Guerrero and that Eddie’s fans are proud of him. This is building up to a heel turn of some description. They share a hug. It’s very sweet.

Then Fat Matt Hardy rocks in, happy as fuck. Look at him smile. He’s set for a match with his lookalike, Gregory Helms, who comes in with his Cruiserweight belt. This is not a Cruiserweight Championship match, however. Cole tells us that Helms is the longest-running champ currently in the Fed, which goes to say how the titles were moved about like hotcakes at the time. The bell rings and Helms doesn’t remove his hat.

Gregory Helms def. Matt Hardy via pin in 11:43.

Why is the Hurricane still wearing his Ali G hat/do-rag? JBL gives off about Maggle telling him off for his syntax. He then rags on George W Bush. In the ring, Fat Matt and Helms lock up and push each other about. Gregory loses the hat and there’s a beautiful hip toss before some matwork. The ref is wearing SmackDown blue as Matt Hardy does the Hurricane’s pose, causing the audience to pop. The two men roll over the top rope. Lovely roll-up and Helms gives Hardy two neckbreakers.

Helms hits another neckbreaker, goes for the cover and only gets a two. Tazzmission city for a while. Matt gives Greg’s thigh a wee squeeze. Hardy drops Helms with another neckbreaker and more Tazzmission city. Maggle and JBL give off to each other. It really undermines the action in the ring when the commentators can’t even focus on the match. That and acknowledging negative chants from the crowd takes away from the action in the ring. Even the worst match needs to be sold.

Russian Leg Sweep followed by another close pin. JBL talks about Dusty Rhodes for some reason. Don’t get me wrong, I love Dusty, but he has nothing to do with this match. JBL then mentions enzymes again. Matt goes for the superplex but it is countered in a super neckbreaker from the rop rope. Jeepers, it’s been neckbreaker city tonight. Lesnar would be proud, if only he were capable of emotions. Pin attempt and Hardy had his leg on the rope. Another two pin attempts and Helms gets his anger up.

Wee spoon on the ground for a while and Helms knees Hardy in the face for a spell. JBL makes fun of internet fans as a guy in a referee outfit sells candyfloss in the background. Blow exchange in the middle of the ring before Hardy hits the Side Effect but gets only a two-count. Hardy hits a bulldog and goes for another pin but gets two. What can these two men do to each other?

Some reversals, Hardy goes for the Twist of Fate, reversed again and Helms goes for the Shining Wizard but Hardy kicks out. Helms brings Hardy over to the turnbuckle and places him on it. Hardy fights back, hits a moonsault but only gets a two count. Hardy goes up to Bret’s rope and hits a double axe-handle nothing. Matt goes to the top rope again, Helms tosses him off and gets a roll-up for a weak win in 11:43.

2016 comments:

Some great psychology here and fantastic spots that are ruined by the weak ending.

2006 comments:

Bring back Jeff.

Grade: B-

Another cut to Khali and Daivari walking through the corridor. Taker turns up and the two square off until ECW’s Big Show arrives to beat on Undertaker. Teddy Long stands by and Khali kicks the Undertaker in the head. JBL and Cole recount the Khali and Show on Undertaker fights that have been happening backstage and in the last few matches.

On the Card will return on August 6 with the third part of The Great American Bash 2006.

Ruthless Aggression #5: The Great American Bash (July 23, 2006) Part 1

Ruthless Aggression #5: The Great American Bash – July 23, 2006.

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 July 23, 2006, the PPV The Great American Bash aired. It was a SmackDown! PPV, and the first SmackDown! PPV since Judgment Day in May. 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.

The Great American Bash 2006

There was no tagline this time either, though it doesn’t surprise me as SmackDown! is the B-show. The poster shows Batista roaring as an American flag surrounds him. Despite the fact that I am an Irishman living in Scotland, I chose to review this on July 4th which is Independence Day in America.

After the video to remind us that we’re watching men hit each other, the American flat waves, sparkling in the breeze. The announcer tells us that America is the land of the free where everyone is able to chase their wildest dreams. We then see images of Khali (an Indian who does not speak English), The Undertaker (a zombie from Death Valley), Booker T (a black man pretending to be a king), and Rey Mysterio (a tiny Mexican). All colours, nationalities, creeds and genders are shown here. And by “all”, I mean, “more than just white men”.

The announcer then tells us that Khali hails “from the jungles of India” and tells us that he is Undertaker’s “greatest challenge” which is an honest-to-God lie. We see Booker T heel it up with his mad wife and Rey appears as the announcer tells us that it will be the “most captivating event of the night,” which is also a lie.

Pyro hits and the smoke fails to clear as we are introduced to Conseco Fieldhouse, Indianapolis. 9,750 people in attendance with 232,000 PPV buys, a drop from the 337,000 buys at Vengeance. Your announcers are moustache-and-soul-patch combo’d Michael Cole and Cunt JBL, a sign of things to come as the two are still inseparable ten years later, despite the best efforts of both taste and decency. We also have mad Hugo Savinovich and Carlos Cabrera. As usual, they are cut off because who cares about the Mexicans? Certainly not the WWE.

 (Note: Before the PPV began, there was a dark match featuring Funaki and Simon Dean. Funaki, funnily enough, would later become the Japanese commentator and this would be Simon Dean’s final PPV match as he left to work with developmental shortly afterwards.)

Generic music hits and down rocks the WWE Tag Team Champions, Paul London and Brian Kendrick. They’re all garbed in purple with ninja hoods adorned with a skull motif. Very edgy, lads. I don’t think there is any part of the human anatomy that has been on more wrestling merch than skulls other than boobs or dicks.

Stereo backflips from the men. Cole calls them “strange dudes”. Cunt JBL says that they are from Pluto and then goes on a rant about the Spanish Announcers because he is a cunt. Jamie Noble and Kid Cash come out, chains around their necks, known as The Pit Bulls. Our referee here, Charles “Little Naitch” Robinson, is in Kid Kash’s face telling him to step the hell back.

WWE Tag Team Championship match: Paul London and Brian Kendrick (c) def. The Pit Bulls (Jamie Noble and Kid Kash) via pin in 13:28.

Kash goes for London’s legs and the two brawl for a bit in what looks to be a shoot scrap for a bit. Cole names all the people who have ever wrestled. Kash shouts in London’s face. Cunt JBL talks about how being in a tag team is different to being a singles wrestler. Kid Kash goes for a hip toss and London lands it, gains some momentum and gives a lovely takedown, tags in Kendrick and throws his partner at Kash. Noble gets tagged in and slaps Kendrick with a wonderful slap before getting a cross body.

London off the tag hits Noble with a dangerous double-leg boot to the back. London gets thrown into the corner and Noble takes control but London tags in his partner, clean house and hit the stereo dive between the ropes after a quick celebration. The crowd pop as bodies lie everywhere. Kendrick tries to jump off the turnbuckle onto Noble but Kash puts him off and The Pit Bulls take over. Cunt JBL likes it. Kash lifts Kendrick up by his hair and slams him down. JBL says, “It’s like being on the road, away from your wife: It’s only cheating if you get caught, pal.” Prick.

Kendrick hits Kash with a great hurricanrana and Noble goes to jump on him, but takes a ring rope to the balls. London takes both Nitro and Kash down with suplexes, London is on the apron, knocks Kash off and as he attempts to enter the ring, London gets booted to the outside by Nitro. Nitro stomps a mudhole in him and walks it dry but fails to get the pin. London gets a big clap as chinlock city lasts for an acceptable amount of time: less than ten seconds. Noble gets Kendrick in an ankle lock and Kash is in, rough as anything on London’s head and neck. Another wicked chop brings London to his knees.

Kash pulls at London’s trunks and both the Pit Bulls give London a stereo headbutt. The pace is slowing down right now and London is fighting back, aiming for the hot tag and Kash is kicked away, Noble is knocked to the ground and as Kendrick is about to get the tag, Noble pulls him off the apron. The Pit Bulls double team London and two great flips (one from Noble, one from London) get Kendrick in and he cleans house, rolling about and battering the Pit Bulls with ruthless abandon. Two count stopped by a hand on the ropes. Hurricanrana to pin attempt stopped by Noble. London comes in and breaks up an attempt at a double underhook powerbomb. Kendrick runs to the top rope and jumps out to hit Noble.

In the ring, London and Kash grapple as the latter attempts a brainbuster. Kendrick does a great sunset flip over the both of them and as Kash is Aloha Arning, trying to gain footing and not get pinned, London jumps up, dropsaults (dropkick/somersault combo) him in the chest and Kash is rolled up for the pin in 13:28.

2016 comments:

Fantastic start. Kendrick and London are great in this match and the only downside is Kid Kash’s stiff shots.

2006 comments:

I hope these teams fight forever.

Grade: A

Great start all together. It can only go downhill from here, it seems. The pair of them celebrate as Noble and Kash look on, angrily. London seems in genuine pain, especially from the chest where Kash dropkicked him.

On the Card will return on July 30 with the second part of The Great American Bash 2006.