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Thread: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

  1. #221
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    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    Yeah, the Angle one-upping HBK stuff was gold, a great way to push the feud with them on separate brands.

    Crazy how half arsed the WM build was as mentioned, yet they can still find room for Dawn Marie vs. Michelle McCool

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    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    Quote Originally Posted by Postman Dave View Post
    Crazy how half arsed the WM build was as mentioned, yet they can still find room for Dawn Marie vs. Michelle McCool
    Which was ... well, Lill' Naich's face on that thumbnail tells how bad the match was lol

  3. #223

    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    Monday Night Raw
    November 7, 2005


    The first live WWE event I ever attended.

    Raw kicks off with Coach and Jerry Lawler hyping the main event of John Cena and Shawn Michaels vs Kurt Angle and Chris Masters. From there, they introduce the newest Raw commentator, Joey Styles.

    From there, Raw GM, Eric Bischoff, came out to the ring while most of the Raw roster are hanging out on the apron. Bischoff announces two matches for Survivor Series including Ric Flair vs Triple H in a Last Man Standing Match as well as John Cena defending the WWE World Title against Kurt Angle. However, Bischoff is here tonight to determine who will be on Team Raw in the Smackdown vs Raw Survivor Series match. Bischoff initially announces Shawn Michaels and The Big Show/Kane (World Tag Champions) as members of the team. After Carlito and Shelton Benjamin argue over who should be on the team, Bischoff announces that the two will battle in a match where the winner joins Team Raw. To try and talk Bischoff into adding them to Team Raw, Trevor Murdoch and Lance Cade talk their way into a World Tag Team Titles match tonight against Show and Kane in a Hardcore Match with it implied that the winners gets the belts and the spots. Gregory Helms doesn’t care about Survivor Series, he just wants a match against Rosey. Meanwhile, psycho Mickie James just wants everyone to praise Trish Stratus. From there, Bischoff shifts his attention towards Edge and Lita. We’re shown a clip from last week’s Taboo Tuesday where Edge bailed on the Raw vs Smackdown tag match. As punishment for Edge’s lack of love of Raw, Bischoff sends them to Smackdown where Edge will work a Street Fight against Batista. Thus ends the opening talking segment. Meanwhile, I’m left wondering about the fifth man for Team Raw that Bischoff just never addressed.

    Shelton Benjamin vs Carlito
    Winner joins Team Raw at Survivor Series 2005. Since the 2005 WWE Draft, these two have battled each other four times, including once on PPV at Vengeance. However, lately Benjamin has hit a slump appearing on HEAT more than Raw. Despite the match starting during the commercial break and featuring a now dead in the water Benjamin, I actually enjoyed this one. Early on, Carlito delivered a low drop kick to Benjamin’s knee when Shelton was trying to climb back into the ring. That allowed the entire story to be built around knee work and Shelton selling. Although Shelton isn’t a big seller, he does enough that even when he’s on offense and all excited, he’s clearly slower than he normally is. If there’s a drawback to the match, it’s that Carlito didn’t have a finisher for the first few years of his WWE career. Instead, he normally just won by some means of cheating. The problem with that is that there’s not much drama in the finishing stretch. Carlito would hit a DDT, but since we know that’s not his finisher, there’s not any suspense on whether or not Shelton can kick out of it. In the end, Carlito wins while holding onto the ropes for the unfair advantage to steal the victory and join Team Raw. Get the guy a finisher! The knee work allowed for Carlito to have a target to keep going back to allowing him to put in more effort than he did at Vengeance. The downside is that the knee work also prevented Benjamin from flying around. I’m a sucker for limb work though. ** ¾


    Backstage, Trish Stratus wants to talk to Mickie James about what happened at Taboo Tuesday, but Mickie is just too thrilled about teaming with Trish tonight.

    Trish Stratus and Mickie James vs Victoria and Candice Michelle
    This is during the time period where Victoria and Candice was in a Mean Girls trio with Torrie Wilson. I can’t recall if they had an official name, but I know they were referred to as Vince’s Devils and Ladies in Pink, but was that their official name? Anyways, this match wasn’t pretty. Trish was never legally in the ring, Candice’s big struggle was a losing struggle to keep her pants up to avoid showing her ass crack, and the majority of the match was Victoria and Mickie having a surprisingly difficult time working together. Multiple times Victoria and Mickie blew spots. I wasn’t expecting a good match, but I also wasn’t expecting these two women to keep failing at such simple spots like a leap frog or a victory roll. Although Trish was never officially in the match, at one point she jumped in, frustrated that Mickie was kept from getting the hot tag, where Trish quickly cleaned house. Despite this, the heels still won when Candice slipped Victoria her wand for Victoria to knock Mickie out with it for the unfair pinfall. Although their WWE matches together weren’t good, I seem to recall Mickie and Victoria redeemed themselves with at least one quite good TNA PPV match. ¾ *

    Last week on Raw, HBK knocked John Cena out with Sweet Chin Music when the WWE World Champion was attempting to deliver a FU to Kurt Angle. The next night at Taboo Tuesday, Michaels and Angle worked together to send Cena through a table with a front suplex during their triple threat match. How will Cena and Michaels work together for tonight’s tag match against Angle and Chris Masters?!

    A video package is shown highlighting all that went down at last week’s Taboo Tuesday. You can read my review of Taboo Tuesday 2005 here.

    Backstage, the new World Tag Team Champions, Kane and The Big Show meet up to discuss tonight’s meeting against the former champions - Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch. The champions look to do some destroying tonight.

    Gregory Helms vs Rosey
    It was on the October 17th edition of Raw that Kurt Angle attacked The Hurricane. Frustrated over the attack and the fact that Rosey only appeared after the fact, Hurricane ditched his mask and shoved Rosey away before walking off on his partner. The next week on Raw, Rosey wrestled The Redneck Wrecking Crew in a handicap match due to The Hurricane choosing not to wrestle the match. It was that same night that Hurricane announced that he would now be known as Gregory Helms. Looking back, it’s surprising that this match wasn’t booked on Taboo Tuesday. To my surprise, this was a total mauling by Rosey, getting revenge on his now former partner. Rosey would toss Helms around until he made the mistake to attempt a moonsault. Helms used that as an opportunity to knock Rosey off of the ropes, sending Rosey crashing to the mat below. One Shining Wizard later and Helms wins this short match that resembled a squash for Rosey. This would ultimately be it for Rosey, never wrestling on WWE TV again. He’d work one single dark match with the recently returned Jamal (Just prior to the debut of Umaga) in early 2006, but would be released in March 2006. From there, Rosey would score a couple of dark matches in 2007, but would fail to secure another job offering. After leaving the WWE, Rosey spent a couple of years working tours with AJPW where he was a member of the Voodoo Murders faction, which allowed him to work the first Wrestle Kingdom event. However, Rosey’s career started to really dry up before the end of the decade. Before long, he was just working a few matches a year until 2016 where his last recorded match was a six man tag with The Hurricane. Sadly, Rosey would pass away in 2017. I was always more of a Jamal fan than Rosey’s, but I felt Rosey looked good here as a dominant big man despite the fact that he ultimately lost. The booking was a little odd as Rosey’s career was basically done and Helms is just starting up this new gimmick and despite winning, Helms spent the match getting his ass kicked. Gregory Helms on Raw just wasn’t a good fit, but once he’d jump to Smackdown in a couple of months, he’d fare a lot better. Solid enough match. ** ¼


    Kane and The Big Show © vs The Redneck Wrecking Crew - Hardcore Match - World Tag Titles
    The biggest vote at last week’s Taboo Tuesday was a poll between HBK, Kane, and The Big Show with the winner being added to WWE World Title match. With HBK winning, Kane and Show were given a consolation prize of sorts in being booked against the World Tag Champions, Cade and Murdoch. Despite not being a regular team, Kane and Show managed to win the titles.The challengers came out for this match pushing a shopping cart filled with weapons. Thanks to the weapons and the fact that they’re a regular team, Cade and Murdoch were able to control a good portion of the match. Working some divide and conquer, the challengers managed to get Show out of the ring so that they can take their turns working on Kane in the ring and Show out of it. However, this only goes on for so long with Cade and Murdoch working over Kane before Show managed to get back into the ring. From there, it’s all downhill for the former tag champions with Kane picking up a Singapore Cane, using it on them. Cade gets dropped on a suplex while Murdoch gets destroyed. There’s a fun visual of Cade trying to escape by crawling away before he’s stopped by the champions. Fighting their way up the entrance ramp, Cade receives a double choke slam through the commentator’s table to give Kane and Show the victory. On one hand, Cade and Murdoch had zero chance at possible victory so the match lacked drama, but on the other hand, they were given a bit of offense. Personally, I would have preferred had things been a little more crazy and there would have been some blood. Strong victory for the new champions though as they prepare to launch into a feud with Smackdown. ** ¼


    Up next is our main event, despite the fact that we’re only an hour into the show. Kurt Angle makes his entrance, but he’s enraged by the Fort Wayne crowd chanting, “You Suck” at him. He tells them to knock it off and tries to make his entrance again, but the chanting continues. Angle berates the crowd, claiming that they have no right to treat him like this. Angle dismisses the stance that paying fans can chant whatever they want since they “Abuse” that privilege. Fed up, Angle cancels the main event and leaves. Angle’s line about the fans abusing their right to say what they want feels like a legitimate opinion that McMahon feels.

    Back from commercial and Eric Bischoff is backstage with Kurt Angle. Bischoff begs Angle to work the main event, but Angle isn’t interested with the crowd’s lack of support. The only way Angle will wrestle is on two conditions - the crowd can’t jeer him and he gets to select a special guest referee. Bischoff immediately agrees on the referee stipulation before agreeing that he’ll figure something out about the fans.

    Before the next match, Triple H comes out to relax on a leather chair to watch the match from the comfort of the entrance ramp.

    Ric Flair © vs Rob Conway - WWE IC Title
    Even though Conway hardly deserves an IC Title shot, this falls in line with his recent angle of feuding with WWE legends. It began at Raw Homecoming when Conway interrupted a legend’s segment. It’s a bit depressing seeing how many of those legends in that original segment are now gone. Since then, Conway has wrestled the likes of Doink the Clown, Greg Valentine, and Koko B. Ware on HEAT and Raw. The payoff to the program was Conway and Tyson Tomko losing a tag match to Eugene and Jimmy Snuka last week at Taboo Tuesday. There’s not much to this match as Flair dominates the majority of this short one. He even manages to connect with a single armed ax handle from the top rope. Conway would briefly gain the advantage, but a low blow from Flair would give the advantage back to the champion. Flair would lock in the Figure Four with Conway eventually tapping. It’s a nothing match, but it kind of holds a special place to me as it’s the first time I got to see Flair wrestle live, something that by 2005, I was doubting that I was ever going to be able to see. Besides this match, I ended up seeing Flair live one other time at a Raw house show just before Wrestlemania 23 when Flair teamed with Carlito against MNM. **

    Immediately after the match, Triple H, who left his comfortable chair to head down to the ring during the Figure Four spot, pulled Flair out of the ring with a steel chain around The Nature Boy’s neck. They’d get in a fight with Flair quickly making a comeback with the pair battling in the crowd.

    Backstage, Lita tries to seduce Eric Bischoff into getting Edge out of the Smackdown match against Batista, but Bischoff isn’t interested. Also, Bischoff apparently figured out a way to ensure that Angle doesn’t receive the “You Suck” chants tonight.

    Kurt Angle and Chris Masters vs John Cena and Shawn Michaels
    During Angle’s entrance, the crowd was bleeped every time that they tried to chant “You Suck”.
    Being there live, the pay off to this show long angle ended up not really connecting. For starters, it’s kind of difficult to follow what’s happening in backstage segments since the segments would pop up on the Titantron without notice, so you may end up missing some of it, with the audio not being amazing either. Then there’s just the fact that the censoring applied only to TV broadcast so even if you were aware of what’s happening, you’re not getting the effect. Once everyone made their entrance, Angle’s choice of the special guest referee is revealed to be the return of Daivari. Daivari had not been seen on TV since Muhammad Hassan was killed off at Great American Bash. Since the referee is a heel, this match is pure story as Daivari is your cliche heel referee, constantly being overly unfair to the babyfaces while ignoring the rules or fast counting for the heels. It’s pretty aggressive from the start with Joey Styles growing more and more frustrated while The Coach seems unsure whether he should completely heel it up and claim that Daivari is doing a great job or be a more realistic heel and just claim that Daivari is trying his best, but given that it’s his first time being a referee, he’s not great at it. Since Coach is going back and forth between the two stances, he’s not good at all. The heels controlled the majority of the match with a pair of face-in-peril sequences, the second being with Cena. By time Michaels finally got back in the match at the end, the unfair treatment with the referee really comes into play as Angle slips Masters the chair with Daivari pretending he doesn’t see it, but when Michaels gets ahold of the chair, takes a swing, he’s immediately DQ’d despite missing Masters. Matches with heel referees tend to rarely be great since they get really repetitive, but there’s been so many involved in John Cena matches around this time period that it was just two weeks ago that Cena last had to endure one. So not only are you dealing with the annoyance of a heel referee here, you’re dealing with something you’ve already endured two weeks ago and with another time happening back in August. There’s enough decent talent in this match that this could have held up on its own. Admittedly, thanks to the antics of the heel referee and especially Joey Styles’ commentary, the match wasn’t boring. * ¾

    After the match, Daivari nailed Cena with a chair with the heels standing tall in victory.

    Overall
    Post-Draft 2005 Raw was a difficult program to endure. The brand already lost several great workrate guys in Chris Benoit, Christian, William Regal, and Chris Jericho, but even gaining someone like Kurt Angle didn’t benefit the brand much because he spent the majority of his time on Raw in a feud with John Cena. The booking of Cena in 2005 Raw was awful. It’s already the time period where fans began to turn on Cena. Naturally, there’s a lot of possible reasons as to why it happened, but Cena’s feud with Raw GM, Eric Bischoff, is one of the top reasons. It was an attempt to run Steve Austin/Mr. McMahon, yet again, but it failed hard. It seemed like every one of Cena’s matches at this point was overbooked with Bischoff’s unfair treatment trying to stack the deck against a babyface that the fans were starting to turn against. Angle and Cena may have had some legitimately good to great matches while on Smackdown, but once they came to Raw, their matches generally turned to shit because of the booking. It shouldn’t come as a surprise that their one good PPV match together on Raw came at Taboo Tuesday with Shawn Michaels in a match that didn’t involve any sort of screwiness. The other big story at this point on Raw, Triple H vs Ric Flair, is managing to deliver great matches and to me is the clear highlight of post-draft Raw 2005. The Raw vs Smackdown feud is starting to heat up, which I feel like was a good enough program back in 2005. I know I was kind of a fan of the Show/Kane tag team, if for no other reason that it brought attention back to the World Tag Titles after a weak year thus far. The heel turn by Gregory Helms was a great way to freshen him up, but Raw had nothing of interest for Helms to do, but luckily he was saved with a jump to Smackdown. Although I dug Carlito/Shelton, the rest of the show is painfully average. Look at what Smackdown had to offer the same week - Rey Mysterio vs Randy Orton, Eddie Guerrero’s final match against Mr. Kennedy, and Chris Benoit vs JBL. Smackdown is even in a rebuilding phrase after suffering through its own year and a half of nearly pure shit, yet it still looks more interesting than Raw. Basically, Raw’s glory period of 2004 to pre-draft is clearly over and it’s just a time to endure dull booking until things can pick up on Raw. ...has it ever picked back up since 2005? Anyways, a super average Raw highlighted by Joey Styles’ Raw debut and Daivari’s return.

    Now, my opinion of the show on the WWE Network may not be very favorable, the live experience was great. I went with a couple of college roommates and with it only being my second live event, first for the WWE, everything still felt so new and fun. Even before the show, there were a lot of chants of “Woo” that got everyone involved while fans were taking their seats. The dark match showcased The Miz and The Highlanders prior to their main roster debut with The Miz working a Rockers-like tag team with the late Matt Cappotelli in one of Cappotelli’s last matches. The WWE.com taping of HEAT had Chavo Guerrero’s final match as Kerwin White due to Eddie Guerrero’s death in a week and a rare appearance of Colt Cabana prior to his signing. I mentioned it in the actual review, but being able to see Ric Flair in action live for the first time was fantastic, regardless of what a nothing bout it was. Experiencing Kane’s pyro, witnessing a table bump, and hearing the “You Suck” chants in person are all fond memories. I guess what I’m saying is that if you’ve never been to a live WWE event, go to one. Even if the show itself isn’t actually good, it’s going to be a fun experience.

  4. #224
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    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    It really is no wonder Cena got booed in 2005. His promos turned to shit and they neutered him of the things that got him over. The matches in 2005 were all awful. From getting drafted in 2005 until Wrestlemania 22 you can count one hand the amount of good matches he had.

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    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    Quote Originally Posted by Shock View Post
    It really is no wonder Cena got booed in 2005. His promos turned to shit and they neutered him of the things that got him over. The matches in 2005 were all awful. From getting drafted in 2005 until Wrestlemania 22 you can count one hand the amount of good matches he had.

    Sent from my Moto E (4) Plus using Tapatalk
    What's weird about this period in particular was that he was working with a guy like Angle who he was frequently having good matches with on SD. Yet the moment they both went to Raw it suddenly went to shit. The effects of bad booking I guess.

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  6. #226
    TAKE THE DREAM~

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    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    Cena struggled in the typical Superman role at first, from what I've seen. But WWE stuck with it and he eventually grew into it. Just shows what patience can give you.

  7. #227

    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    Quote Originally Posted by MC 16 View Post
    Cena struggled in the typical Superman role at first, from what I've seen. But WWE stuck with it and he eventually grew into it. Just shows what patience can give you.
    I wouldn't say that Cena grew into anything. By 2003, Cena was already a solid wrestler. That level of quality is where Cena remained for the rest of his career. He's never been a guy that can carry a lesser talent and he's certainly had his fair share of shit matches throughout his career. However, as he was a main event level guy for a full decade, he was given a billion opportunities to deliver with things being to his advantage. Since he was a solid wrestler, if he was put against a great wrestler and the booking didn't get in the way, he produced some great stuff. For as much as the WWE tried they never could figure out how to get the fans fully on his side again like they were the night he was drafted to Raw.

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    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim View Post
    I wouldn't say that Cena grew into anything. By 2003, Cena was already a solid wrestler. That level of quality is where Cena remained for the rest of his career. He's never been a guy that can carry a lesser talent and he's certainly had his fair share of shit matches throughout his career. However, as he was a main event level guy for a full decade, he was given a billion opportunities to deliver with things being to his advantage. Since he was a solid wrestler, if he was put against a great wrestler and the booking didn't get in the way, he produced some great stuff. For as much as the WWE tried they never could figure out how to get the fans fully on his side again like they were the night he was drafted to Raw.
    I absolutely disagree that Cena remained at the same level he was at in 2003. After this run, his selling improved, the timing of his big moves improved, his match quality increased tenfold and came much more frequently. Maybe not month to month, but often enough. His run as champion during 2007 is absolutely amazing, imo and had a plethora of great matches to choose from with Umaga, Khali, Lashley, Orton. And Khali would be someone who everyone agrees is a lesser wrestler. I would totally argue that he carries Khali to two very good to great matches by adapting to Khali's strengths, making him look like a monster with his selling and having great timing. And no one else, as far as I can recall has done that.

    I also think its unfair to say someone had great matches due to the amount of opportunities they have had at it. You still have to give great performances which Cena has done plenty of times. Someone like Edge is a great example of someone who fits that description except he doesn't have a ton of great matches. Because he didn't hold his end whereas Cena has done.

    Even in some of his famous matches like the Punk match. I would go as far as to say that he was the superior wrestler in that match. The Bryan Summerslam match as well.

    And of course Cena has his fair share of bad matches. That's something I'm not going to deny. He has plenty that fit that. But I don't think that make him a "fine" wrestler. I would consider Cena someone who is actually great and was for years.

  9. #229

    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    Quote Originally Posted by MC 16 View Post
    I absolutely disagree that Cena remained at the same level he was at in 2003. After this run, his selling improved, the timing of his big moves improved, his match quality increased tenfold and came much more frequently. Maybe not month to month, but often enough. His run as champion during 2007 is absolutely amazing, imo and had a plethora of great matches to choose from with Umaga, Khali, Lashley, Orton. And Khali would be someone who everyone agrees is a lesser wrestler. I would totally argue that he carries Khali to two very good to great matches by adapting to Khali's strengths, making him look like a monster with his selling and having great timing. And no one else, as far as I can recall has done that.
    Jesus, let's not go crazy over the Khali matches. Cena managed to get two fine matches out of Khali. The Lashley match has always been terribly overrated. It's a solid three star match, but the praise it gets as if it's great is crazy. I'm not knocking that reign since it's clearly his best though.

    I also think its unfair to say someone had great matches due to the amount of opportunities they have had at it. You still have to give great performances which Cena has done plenty of times. Someone like Edge is a great example of someone who fits that description except he doesn't have a ton of great matches. Because he didn't hold his end whereas Cena has done.
    Edge has plenty of great matches as a main event tier guy. He's a lot like Cena where he's had his fair share of shit and quality.

    Opportunities absolutely play a role in Cena delivering some great matches. Once he reached main event status, pretty much every PPV he was booked on from that point on had the potential to be great since he was given loads of time and booked against mostly good crop of talent. Sometimes it worked and sometimes it didn't. When it didn't, sometimes it was because he wasn't able to produce quality with a weak opponent (The majority of the matches with JBL) or it was overbooked.

    And of course Cena has his fair share of bad matches. That's something I'm not going to deny. He has plenty that fit that. But I don't think that make him a "fine" wrestler. I would consider Cena someone who is actually great and was for years.
    There's nothing wrong with being a solid wrestler. There's plenty of main eventers that I wish was at least solid. Triple H, for example, is someone I would say is a little under solid, despite the fact that he thinks he's a top quality worker. Other solid wrestlers were Hogan, Edge, Batista, and Sheamus. So it's not bad company. But if you're going to be throwing around the great term, it's a disservice to legitimately great workers like Flair, Benoit, Bret, and Bryan to include Cena.

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    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    John Cena is far too inconsistent and has too many really bad matches to be considered a great wrestler. He is a good wrestler, capable of very great/special matches, but if you pick a random Cena match from his career you're just as likely to have something shit than something good.





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    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    ECW on Sci-Fi
    December 19, 2006


    Taped with Smackdown, this ECW on Sci-Fi would be the second WWE TV taping I would attend.

    The show opens up with the ECW Champion, Bobby Lashley, coming out to the ring to address a few things. First up, the former ECW Champion - The Big Show. Any time Show wants another crack at the ECW Title, Lashley will be happy to provide it. By this point, The Big Show had already begun his sabbatical from the WWE, so this offer would be pretty meaningless. Next up is a little campaign ECW is currently running. The fans will be able to log onto ECW.com and vote for Lashley’s next challenger. The options for the title match in a few weeks are Sabu, Test, and Rob Van Dam. Finally, Lashley shills next week’s Tribute to the Troops and implores us all to watch. This promo is downright awful. Lashley just isn’t comfortable on the mic at all. He’s stumbling, getting lost, and has to keep pausing to remember his place. I know that the only way to improve is to practice and it’s better for Lashley to suck on the mic on ECW instead of a main brand, but the entire tone of the promo was off. Where’s the value in a smiling Lashley that is all thankful and shit? Eventually, Rene Dupree, rocking plain white ring gear and a ponytail, comes out to mock the military. That leads directly into…

    Bobby Lashley © vs Rene Dupree - Non-Title
    Dupree had just recently come to ECW after facing an injury shortly after being drafted back to Raw in 2005. Going for the eyes at the start of the match, Dupree was able to get in some offense before Lashley mounts a comeback mostly consisting of running charges and either hitting a shoulder block or closeline. Lashley would make quick work of the former co-holder of the World Tag Titles with an awkward looking Dominator. After over a year of using the Dominator, Lashley still struggles to hit it without looking awkward. I think it was just after this that the WWE changed up Lashley’s finisher, giving him a running power slam instead, but opting to still refer to it as the Dominator. Smart move to be honest. At this point in time, Lashley just wasn’t ready to lead a brand. He still comes across as so damn green with the pre-match promo being an embarrassment for a World Champion in the WWE. But hey, he looked like a roided up freak. Gotta push him! * ¾

    Joey Styles and Tazz plugs the fan voting to determine Lashley’s next challenger again while also advertising that tonight’s main event is Sabu vs Test vs Rob Van Dam. Yet, that’s not a #1 contender’s match, it’s just a match to try and impress the fans into voting for them. Surely, the WWE wouldn’t have a guy win that match that couldn’t possibly win the poll…

    We are then introduced to the newest commentator in ECW, the former WCW Light Heavyweight Champion, Brad Armstrong. Don’t remember Armstrong as a commentator in the WWE? It’s for good reason as he only lasted a few weeks.

    We’re shown a clip from last week where Balls Mahoney was invited to Matt Striker’s Classroom, only for Striker to give Balls a low blow.

    Matt Striker vs Balls Mahoney
    Oh boy. This is only the first match commentated by Brad Armstrong and it’s already memorable with how terrible it is. Although he’s not on Art Donovan’s level for shit commentators, he spends way too much time asking questions, making it seem as if he’s entirely unfamiliar with the WWECW roster. Tazz tries to work in some banter with Armstrong, but when Armstrong fails at even being able to do that successfully, it really seems as if Tazz becomes legitimately annoyed at Armstrong. As for the match, it was fine. Striker got in a nice Facewash while Balls was surprisingly over with the crowd chanting along with the Balls punches with the final punch connecting, unlike last week when Striker interrupted it with the low blow. After delivering the Balls Breaker, Balls would miss a top rope leg drop allowing Striker to perform his poor looking variation of Overdrive called The Golden Rule. The Golden Rule is Striker in a nutshell - it’s too much of a tryhard. Balls deserved a little better at this point, but he’d at least have a little more favorable 2007. Not quite as good as their December to Dismember match, but still a fine TV match. **


    That’s it for Brad Armstrong tonight thankfully.

    In a taped promo, Test makes his case for why the fans should vote for him to receive an ECW Title shot on January 2nd. Test claims that he beat RVD in an Extreme Rules match, eliminated him in the Elimination Chamber, and beat him last week on ECW on Sci-Fi. For Sabu, all Test says is that he’s come at him and failed. Test promises to win tonight and then the fans will have to vote for him. Although Test doesn’t have much of a case over Sabu, he made a great argument for himself to be voted over RVD.

    In another taped promo, RVD makes his case for why the fans should vote for him to receive an ECW Title shot on January 2nd. RVD’s case is that he’s been screwed out of fair ECW Title shots since last summer and this is his chance to receive a fair one. Besides, he’s the reason why anyone even watches ECW! Sorry, RVD, but your argument isn’t so good. Should have brought up the fact that you beat then-ECW Champion, in a pair of non-title matches, but you were never awarded a singles ECW Title shot. My vote is still for Test.

    Hardcore Holly is in the ring with the commentators showing a flashback to last week when Hardcore Holly was DQ’d against CM Punk for kicking too much ass. After the match, Punk forced Holly to tap out to the Anaconda Vice. Holly here is to address what happened last week. He did not tap out last week! That’s a false rumor. #FakeNews But...since Punk thinks that he can force Holly to tap out, Holly offers Punk another chance to prove it. Holly finishes the promo with the line, “Just remember, I’m a weapon. And I will always be a weapon.” Uhh...okay, Bob.

    That brings out CM Punk, but just before the match begins, Holly announces that Punk only has three minutes to make him tap.

    CM Punk vs Hardcore Holly
    My first and only time seeing CM Punk live. Back in the day for the Smackdown/ECW tapings, they’d run a dark match (On this night was Jimmy Wang Yang vs Jamie Noble), then tape Smackdown, and then there’s be a bit of an intermission before they’d start the live ECW on Sci-Fi. It was in that intermission that I went and bought CM Punk’s first WWE shirt. Anyways, onto the match and it’s a disappointment. Since it’s just a three minute challenge, nothing happens. Punk is constantly trying to take Holly down so that he’s able to attempt to lock in the Anaconda Vice, but he’s never able to succeed. Meanwhile, Holly kills time by slamming Punk, performing his own version of Sheamus’ Beats Of The Bodhran, and generally is just filling up the time without bothering to go for covers since the point of the challenge isn’t for him to actively win. In the end, the three minutes expire without Punk ever successfully locking in the Anaconda Vice. Back around this time period, any time Punk lost, a lot of people online complained about Punk surely being in the doghouse, which was really stupid since he won most of the time, but a challenge like this did nothing for Punk. In the aftermath of this match, Holly would be the first to score a singles victory over Punk in January (...why? ) with Punk getting his win back prior to Wrestlemania 23 when it’s clear that Holly’s push in WWECW was finished. This was pretty lame. *

    Backstage, Shannon Moore is on the phone when he finishes his call, but bumps into Daivari. Daivari’s pissed off, so he utilizes the fear of The Great Khali to trash talk Moore before challenging Moore to a match tonight.

    The Great Khali w/Daivari vs Shannon Moore
    As you can see, Daivari suckered Moore into the match and then did the switcharoo with Khali taking his place in the match. Khali quickly kills Moore while Tommy Dreamer runs out with a chair to attack Daivari. Apparently, Khali pinned Moore, but we miss it as the camera is instead on Dreamer and Daivari. Khali would make the save for his little buddy, giving Dreamer a Punjabi Plunge on the steel steps. Pretty vicious spot with Dreamer selling it wonderfully. SQUASH.


    We’re shown a vignette showcasing Sabu. I guess this serves as Sabu’s argument for why he should be voted for to receive the ECW Title shot on January 2nd. Gotta say this was an even worse argument than RVD’s. My vote is still for Test.

    Back to ringside and Dreamer is being placed on a stretcher to sell the effects of the Punjabi Plunge on the steps. I wonder how long Dreamer was out of action to properly sell this. Looks like he still worked house shows, but didn’t wrestle on TV again for three weeks. I suppose that’s decent.

    We’re shown a highlights from a few weeks ago with Mike Knox humiliating his ex-girlfriend, Kelly Kelly. That involved throwing roses in the face of Kelly Kelly and then dropping her with Knox Out. Meanwhile, Mike Knox is interviewed by Joey Styles and Tazz from backstage. Knox makes some legitimately good points about what a terrible girlfriend Kelly Kelly was and how she never hid her feelings for CM Punk. What he did to Kelly Kelly hurt him more than it hurt her. Obviously, attacking Kelly Kelly makes Knox a dick, but he was completely justified for wanting to humiliate her some. Basically, they were both dickbags and it was a toxic relationship. They’re both better off without the other.

    Rob Van Dam vs Test vs Sabu
    A match that is totally not a #1 contender’s match despite the fact that it’s a match with the three men that are in contention to be the #1 contender. This match is so fucking meaningless. Throughout the match, Tazz keeps reminding everyone that the result doesn’t matter, it’s who wins the poll that earns the title shot. The three took turns working a series of singles match with Sabu quickly getting a bloody mouth and RVD takes a big bump, being shoved off of the top rope by Test and crashing into the barrier. The fun value of the match just consisted of RVD and Sabu briefly working together, but once Test was sent out of the ring near the end, the battle between RVD and Sabu is so riveting that there’s a small “TNA” chant. In fairness, it was pretty dull. Ultimately, RVD would land a Five Star Frog Splash on Sabu, but would be hurt so much delivering the move that he’s not able to immediately cover Sabu. That allows Test to jump into the ring, toss RVD out, and pin Sabu to steal the victory. Who doesn’t love a main event that means absolutely nothing? * ½


    Immediately after the match, you know the match that was supposed to sway fans into voting one way or another, Tazz jumped into the ring to announce the results of the vote. The results are as follows:

    Test - 18%
    Sabu - 37%
    Rob Van Dam - 45%

    RVD is getting a title shot on January 2nd! Test got fucked so hard! While RVD celebrates the victory in the poll, despite losing the match, Test eventually snaps and lays RVD out with a big boot. Tazz calls Test a sore loser, but like...Test won the match. He has every right to be salty. The guy scored three pinfalls over RVD and pinned Sabu tonight.

    Overall
    Everyone knows that WWECW in 2006 was bad. This short period is WWECW at its absolute worst though. Paul Heyman is gone and so is The Big Show, the then two biggest heels that the entire brand had been built around. The result is that the brand is still awful, but now it’s in an awkward phase where the brand is directionless. Despite not having an authority figure at all, we’re still getting things announced without knowing who’s responsible for them. For example, who decided that Test, Sabu, and RVD were the three top contenders to the ECW Title? The leader of the brand, Bobby Lashley, is beyond awful and has zero right trying to be a leader. The hottest new star that the brand should be built around, CM Punk, is stuck feuding with Spark Plugg, a program that mostly just gave Punk losses or non-wins. The Great Khali is the monster on the brand, but he’s only in WWECW to try and give him more experience so that he can be shipped back to the main brands, so it’s not as if there’s going to be any pay off with Khali being a threat to Lashley’s title. Although we’re far away from when WWECW would become a really good program, it would find direction around Wrestlemania 23 with Mr. McMahon stepping in as the main heel and threat to Lashley, The New Breed vs ECW Originals, and CM Punk pushed. As for this show, it holds zero value unless you want to witness Test being screwed over and Brad Armstrong’s dreadful debut as a commentator. Luckily, the Smackdown taping was much more fun, saving this live experience for me.

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    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    Post-December to Dismember was certainly a bad time for WWECW brand. Fans had spend six months thinking WWE was actually interested in recreating ECW, only to make Bobby Lashley the Champion, and hardcore matches becoming a novelty. At least WWE was beginning to try to push CM Punk around this time. For him to have won the ECW Title in late-'06 would have been too much, too soon. I feel the "Sparky Plugg" reference was a low-blow. Hardcore Holly was a tough-as-nails competitor and was a good rival for Punk at that time. And using Art Donovan as the standard bearer for bad announcers? As bad as he was did you forget about Mike Adamle?


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  13. #233

    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    Quote Originally Posted by BattleKat View Post
    I feel the "Sparky Plugg" reference was a low-blow. Hardcore Holly was a tough-as-nails competitor and was a good rival for Punk at that time. And using Art Donovan as the standard bearer for bad announcers? As bad as he was did you forget about Mike Adamle?
    Holly was hardly a good rival for Punk. He was a near twenty year veteran who was pretty much only ever seen as a lowcarder. That's the guy you're putting over CM Punk, a hot newcomer who decided to keep unbeaten for months? It's not as if Holly's post-Punk WWE career is anything to brag about, making it even weirder for the choice for Holly to go over Punk.

    Art Donovan was absolutely worse than Mike Adamle, but Donovan is also a better comparison since Armstrong spent most of his time asking stupid questions, causing the regular commentators to grow annoyed and start ignoring him, just like what happened at King of the Ring 1994.

  14. #234

    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    Smackdown
    April 29, 1999


    While Smackdown would properly start up in late August 1999, it received a special pilot episode in April 1999. My assumption is that the deal for the eventual weekly show between the WWE and UPN wasn’t set at this point, but this was the chance for the WWE to prove that they could draw ratings and convince UPN to sign a deal. For content’s sake, we’re days removed from Backlash 1999.

    The show kicks off with a recap of what’s been going on with The Rock this week. First The Rock lost the WWE Title match against Steve Austin at Backlash, Shane McMahon kicked The Rock out of The Corporation the next night on Raw, and Triple H stepped up to help The Corporation continue to get the best of Rock. Meanwhile, Backlash 1999 ended with The Undertaker kidnapped Stephanie McMahon with Vince McMahon having to beg his arch nemesis, Steve Austin, to save her from the black wedding the next night on Raw. Shit’s going crazy~!

    Your hosts tonight are the oddball team of Michael Cole and Jim Cornette as they open the first proper WWE event on network TV since SNME 31 way back in October 1992.

    Vince and Stephanie McMahon came out to the ring to address what’s been going on this week. Vince has a new attitude, admitting his vaults, but claiming that he’s going to try and change. He’s in such a good mood that he wishes to thank those that have been helpful to him lately including Ken Shamrock, The Big Show, and even Steve Austin. From there, Stephanie gets on the mic and cuts an awful speech thanking the same men while addressing what The Undertaker did to her during the twenty-four hour period in which she was kidnapped. While Shane McMahon felt like a natural when he became a TV character in 1998 due to his charisma, Stephanie was the complete opposite. It feels so phoney and any time she looks up at Vince, she looks like a teenage girl staring at her crush. When going over what Undertaker did to her, it’s as if the WWE wanted the fans to enjoy the rapey suggestions. Luckily, Stephanie would improve quite a bit over time.

    That brings out Shane McMahon’s version of The Corporation, now down to just Triple H, Chyna, The Boss Man, and The Mean Street Posse. Shane gets on the mic to fairly criticized Vince for going to Austin to save Stephanie rather than coming to him. I mean, that’s a fair complaint. Vince considers getting into a fight, but is talked out of it with Shane kicking Vince and Stephanie out of the building. From there, Shane addresses his two big problems currently - Austin and Rock. To solve this problem, tonight’s main event will see Austin and Rock team up. While Shane looks for volunteers, Triple H is quick to throw his hand up. Meanwhile, Shane ignores the offers for the rest of The Corporation until The Undertaker comes up on the Titantron to cut a promo on Austin. Somehow, this random promo is good enough for Shane to accepts as Taker as a volunteer. Tonight’s main event is officially The Rock and Steve Austin vs Triple H and The Undertaker~! The commentators shill this as one of the biggest tag matches in WWE history. I get you want to hype up your main event, but is it really such a standout match? Sure, it’s certainly a tag match loaded with star power, but it was just the previous month that we saw Steve Austin and Mankind vs Rock and The Big Show. December had Austin and Mankind vs The Undertaker and The Rock. Hell, October 1998 had The Rock and Steve Austin vs The Brothers of Destruction. Those are just the standout tag matches of the last several months!

    Since Owen Hart is nowhere to be found, Jeff Jarrett with Debra comes out to the ring to take his place in his match with Val Venis. Before the bell, The Blue Blazer jumps Venis from behind to set up…

    The Blue Blazer w/Jeff Jarrett and Debra vs Val Venis
    Well, this is depressing. We’re weeks away from Owen’s death and he’s wrestling on a show that he ultimately won’t even be around to see officially launch. Anyways, Blazer worked the majority of this short match wearing his cape, which quickly gets ripped. Owen looked good enough by trying to fly around. It’s a bit back and forth with Venis nailing a middle rope elbow drop, but that’s Debra’s cue to climb on the apron to show her puppies for the distraction. Venis relies it’s a ploy, so he’s only briefly distraction, allowing him to connect with his Fisherman’s Suplex. Since the referee is still distracted by Debra, Jarrett jumps into the ring to kick Venis in the balls. That allows Blazer to cover Venis to steal the pinfall. A solid, yet forgettable first match in SD history. **


    After the match, The Godfather runs out to continue his new program with Jarrett and Blazer, which stemmed from Godfather beating Jarrett in a match where he gained Debra’s services, but Jarrett refused to let it happen. The heels use their numbers advantage to get the best out of The Godfather.

    Backstage, The Rock mutters to himself.

    Elsewhere, Kevin Kelly interviews The Blue Blazer. The WWE needs The Blue Blazer to clean up all of this deplorable actions going on these days. Blazer denies being Owen Hart. I don’t know if Owen is purposely being bad because it’s part of the gimmick, but it seems like he’s really struggling to find the right words. Although Owen was hardly perfect on the mic (“I kicked your leg out of your leg!”), I can’t imagine he cut this poorly of a promo.

    The Big Show vs Test
    Along with The Rock, Test is another wrestler kicked out of The Corporation after he finally stood up for himself in the abuse from The Boss Man. this match is short enough that I can easily recap it all. Test immediately delivered a big boot and then began slugging away on Show while The Boss Man is shown walking down to the ring. Show whipped Test into the ropes, but Test ducked the closeline, but then runs into a great looking drop kick from Show. That led directly into the choke slam for the victory. It’s a great squash showcase for Show, but I wouldn’t have expected Test to be jobbed out this hard so soon after turning face. SQUASH.


    After the match, Boss Man climbed into the ring, but avoided getting into a fight with Show, another former member of The Corporation. Once Show left the ring, Boss Man began attacking Test with the nightstick until Show ran back in to make the save. With that, the foundation for The Union has been created.

    Back from a commercial break, The Rock comes out to cut a promo on Shane McMahon and Steve Austin. You can really tell that Rock is in a transition period as he’s slowly transitioning into a full time babyface, but he still verbally attacks Austin. That brings out Stone Cold to take some shots on Rock as well. Finally, Shane McMahon comes out on the stage, claiming that his grand plans for tonight are coming together nicely. Out comes The Undertaker to stand side by side with Shane with the rest of The Corporation and The Ministry of Darkness slowly joining them. Has the two most dangerous factions joined forces?!

    Backstage, Kevin Kelly interviews X-Pac and Kane over their recent problems (Kane receiving a bloodbath from The Brood, but taking out his frustrations on X-Pac) and the fact that X-Pac is facing his buddies, The New Age Outlaws tonight. X-Pac doesn’t really answer any questions, but teases some chaos tonight

    D-Lo Brown w/Ivory vs Droz w/Prince Albert
    Much like seeing Owen Hart as The Blue Blazer, it’s pretty awkward seeing D-Lo vs Droz on Smackdown. These two were set to have a rematch on an October Smackdown when the infamous botched Liger Bomb from D-Lo ended up paralyzing Droz, ending his career and forever changing his life. This Smackdown pilot sure has huge reminders of the two biggest wrestling tragedies of 1999. This match is pretty awful. The commentators ignored most of it in favor of talking about the main event tonight. It’s slow going without much direction. At one point, Droz is mocking D-Lo by performing D-Lo’s taunt on the middle rope, allowing D-Lo to surprise Droz by hitting the Liger Bomb, the same move that would end up paralzing Droz come October. The match lumbers on with Droz rolling out of the way of a Lo-Down attempt, but ends up eating a Sky High. After Albert tried to get involved by climbing onto the apron, D-Lo send Droz into Albert, causing both heels to end up on the outside with D-Lo slingshotting himself over the top rope onto Albert. The referee ends up DQ’ing Droz after Albert got into the ring and prevented a second attempt of the Lo Down. A dull match that couldn’t even bother with a proper finish. ½ *


    After the match, Ivory ran to the back while D-Lo gets double teamed. Albert pulls out a giant needle to try and give D-Lo a piercing, but out comes the returning Mark Henry to make the save for his buddy. Once the heels bail, we get a group hug between D-Lo, Henry, and Ivory. A fun moment to make up for an awful match.

    Backstage, Kevin Kelly interviews The New Age Outlaws. Road Dogg admits that he’s good friends with X-Pac, but Billy Gunn interrupts, questioning why Road Dogg cares about friendships when they have a match for the WWE Tag Team Titles tonight.

    Kane and X-Pac © vs The New Age Outlaws - WWE Tag Titles
    It’s the battle of the tag teams of dissension~! To show how bad things are currently in The Outlaws, Billy Gunn refuses to play his part in their entrance. NAO earned this title shot by beating Jeff Jarrett and Owen Hart back at Backlash in a surprisingly good little match. This match is pretty angle based, which I feel actually helps it a good deal. Whenever it’s Road Dogg vs X-Pac, things are pretty relaxed and respectful. Gunn has zero respect for X-Pac or Kane with Gunn and Road Dogg often getting into little arguments over their different attitudes in fighting X-Pac. Meanwhile, Kane is hated by everyone, at one point even grabbing X-Pac by the throat when X-Pac made the mistake of coming too close to The Big Red Monster. This sort of chaos continues until the end when Road Dogg refuses to double team X-Pac, Kane suffers a Fameasser from Gunn, but is broken up by X-Pac. Gunn attempts a press slam to X-Pac, but Kane shoves Road Dogg into Gunn, causing X-Pac to drop on Gunn to score the pinfall. For what this was, this was enjoyable. After this match, Kane and X-Pac would start to gel while Billy Gunn would officially turn heel on the next episode of HEAT. ** ¼

    Back from a commercial break and The Outlaws are in the parking lot, with Road Dogg trying to calm Billy down by reminding him that there will be other matches, but Gunn acting as if he’s done.

    Dok Hendrix is in the ring as he brings out The Brood. This is a pretty infamous promo where The Brood cuts their first promo and...it bombs. It bombed so hard that not only did The Brood not talk again, but it basically killed the group. E&C would be split up from Gangrel and Gangrel would later add The Hardy Boyz as The New Brood. What makes the promo so bad? Everything said sounds so fake. Gangrel starts it off by going on and on about utter nonsense. Besides having a lisp, Gangrel’s material is reminiscent of the worst nonsense that The Undertaker sometimes has to talk. Yet, Taker sometimes makes it work since he does have great delivery. Gangrel is way too soft spoken to succeed as well. Christian has enough sense to remain silent when Hendrix asks him a question. Then it’s Edge’s turn to talk nonsense. He’s slightly better than Gangrel since he doesn’t have a lisp and even at this point, it’s clear that the women love him. Hendrix basically laughs in their face, insulting them, so The Brood beat him down and we get a bloodbath. This would kick off Hendrix morphing into Hot Topic Michael Hayes with him joining up with a pair of jobber brothers to feud with E&C. So overall, while this promo may have been an utter disaster that killed any of the cool factor that The Brood had, but maybe it’s also responsible for some eventual good decisions being made that ended up benefiting E&C.

    Ken Shamrock vs Bradshaw - Street Fight
    Back at Backlash, a baseball bat wielding Bradshaw tried to interfere in the Shamrock/Undertaker match, but Shamrock stopped him easily. The next night on Raw, Shamrock was the one with the bat, ready for a fight with Bradshaw, but Faarooq attacked before the bell to prevent the match from happening. Now it’s time to properly see a match. It’s fairly fun, by Bradshaw standards with Shamrock locking in some holds in the first half before things broke down outside of the ring with Shamrock introducing the baseball bat by missing Bradshaw and nailing the table. Bradshaw is the first to successfully use the bat, but he struggles to maintain control with Shamrock locking in a chokehold with the bat against the carotid artery. Bradshaw eventually goes unconscious and the referee stops the fight in favor of Shamrock. So...the first match in the history of The Corporate Ministry and the new super faction doesn’t even bother interfering in a match where there were no rules? That makes sense. After nearly a year of struggling to find something that worked, Shamrock’s character was starting to get good again around this time period. ** ½

    Backstage, Shane McMahon gives The Corporate Ministry a pep talk. Poor Bradshaw.

    Mankind vs The Boss Man
    The second ever match with The Corporate Ministry~! Again, it’s a match where a member of The Corporate Ministry has to go at it alone. The irony here is that it’s actually Mankind who gets back-up to make this somewhat unfair. Twice, Boss Man tried to walk out of the ring, but first Test ran out to throw Boss Man back in and later The Big Show came out to grab Boss Man by the throat to force Boss Man back in the ring. Don’t get me wrong, I’d rather not see countless Corporate Ministry matches with interference, but it’s their first night! Why are they not interfering in street fights and matches where the opponent has help? That’s basically all the match is as Mankind pulls out Mr. Socko for the victory. * ½

    Backstage, Billy Gunn, who has been looking for X-Pac since ditching Road Dogg in the parking lot, busts into X-Pac’s locker room to pummel him until Kane comes to X-Pac’s rescue. Billy bails rather than fight it out with Kane.

    Steve Austin and The Rock vs Triple H and The Undertaker w/The Corporate Ministry
    Hey, it’s a Corporate Ministry match with some of the other members at ringside! In this case, it’s Paul Bearer, Shane McMahon, Chyna, and The Mean Street Posse. This wasn’t so bad with it beginning hot with Taker and Trips going after Rock prior to Austin coming out, that kicked off Austin’s music to make the save to officially kick the match off. From there, Rock played the face-in-peril for a bit while dealing with offense from Hunter and Taker. The downfall of the match is simply that after the hot tag to Austin, members of The Corporate Ministry ran out to prevent the third ever Corporate Ministry match being yet another proper loss for the group. Instead, it’s a DQ and the action only continued after the bell. Making the safe for the babyfaces would be Ken Shamrock, Test, and The Big Show, three men who have a common enemy in The Corporation. That includes Vince McMahon returning to punch out his son and save Austin from being it with a steel chair, sacrificing himself in a moment that totally makes sense since it’s not as if Vince is secretly in cahoots with Taker. Taker would receive a Stunner and after Shane went after his unconscious father, Austin returned the favor and saved Vince, giving another Stunner to a member of the Corporate Ministry. It’s a pure Attitude Era style TV main event with a non-finish, but it’s ultimately a bit fun. **


    Overall
    For what, at the time, was just some random WWE special, Smackdown had plenty of big moments. The biggest, of course, being the surprise merger of The Corporation and The Ministry of Darkness. Personally, I think that the super faction ended up being a giant dud with a lack of star power beyond Taker and Triple H and some serious fails in logic with the eventual reveal of the higher power. Still, it’s a big deal that the group has been created. Speaking of groups being created, the short lived Union faction is unofficially here with Mankind, The Big Show, Test, and Ken Shamrock finding themselves helping each other out due to having common enemies. To continue the faction talk, this Smackdown featured major problems for already troubled factions in DX and The Brood. For the former, Billy Gunn is really pulling away from Road Dogg and X-Pac. Meanwhile, The Brood cut a legendary promo for all of the wrong reasons. For a guy who ends up becoming known for his charisma in his promos, Edge came off looking so bad here. To cap off the importance, this Smackdown special also included the return of Mark Henry, there to get D-Lo back on track rather than continue to be randomly booked. From a quality standpoint, it's not very special. Match of the night was just some street fight involving Bradshaw and there's fun in witnessing The Big Show hit a rare drop kick in the WWE. For an Attitude Era show, it accomplished its main goal of being important.

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    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    I kinda compare the Union to nWo Wolfpack. Both were babyface groups consisting of mostly main event stars, both groups failed to get as over as the heels they fighting, and both groups became plagued by injuries which severely hampered them.


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  16. #236

    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    Quote Originally Posted by BattleKat View Post
    I kinda compare the Union to nWo Wolfpack. Both were babyface groups consisting of mostly main event stars, both groups failed to get as over as the heels they fighting, and both groups became plagued by injuries which severely hampered them.
    Whoa there, nWo Wolfpac was really over. People love to hate on it now, but Nash's push at the end of 1998 was very justified due to how over he was getting as the leader. He was more popular than Goldberg at Starrcade 1998. The Wolfpac is when Konnan finally got over in WCW after being there for a couple of years. Even Sting had a bit of new life injected into him after an awkward first half of 1998 where he couldn't keep the momentum going.

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    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim View Post
    Whoa there, nWo Wolfpac was really over. People love to hate on it now, but Nash's push at the end of 1998 was very justified due to how over he was getting as the leader. He was more popular than Goldberg at Starrcade 1998. The Wolfpac is when Konnan finally got over in WCW after being there for a couple of years. Even Sting had a bit of new life injected into him after an awkward first half of 1998 where he couldn't keep the momentum going.
    The Wolfpack was certainly better and more over than the Union. And it did help Sting revitalize himself. And I, myself was a huge fan of the group. But, they didn't have the impact of the original nWo. It basically became just another faction, and as injuries mounted to members of the group, they became merged into nWo Hollywood and became a memory.


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  18. #238

    Re: Jim Reviews WWE Weeklies

    Quote Originally Posted by BattleKat View Post
    The Wolfpack was certainly better and more over than the Union. And it did help Sting revitalize himself. And I, myself was a huge fan of the group. But, they didn't have the impact of the original nWo. It basically became just another faction, and as injuries mounted to members of the group, they became merged into nWo Hollywood and became a memory.
    I mean, of course they didn't have the same impact as maybe the biggest faction of all time that really helped create the blueprint for what modern-ish factions should be like. They were far more over than nWo Hollywood was at the time and it's baffling that WCW gave up on the group as soon as they did because they were hot. Injuries did hurt them some, but they could have easily added some new popular babyfaces like Booker T to make up for the losses.

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