The Netcop Rant for Armageddon
– Live from Fort Lauderdale, FL
– Your hosts are Jim Ross & Jerry Lawler
– Tonight’s theme: Militia. Insert Sgt. Slaughter joke here.
– Opening match: Tag team battle royale. We’ve got the Dudleys, Edge & Christian, The Headbangers, the Hardyz, the Mean Street Posse, The Acolytes, Too Cool & the odd pairing of Godfather & Mark Henry. Nice to see they made up. Not nice to see that Kaientai has been punted in favor of Rodney & Pete Gas. Rodney goes quick, and because the ref is a retard, he gets to play switcheroo with Joey Abs a couple of times before Pete Gas gets tossed in full view of the ref, thus eliminating them. Henry dumps Mosh, then gets put out himself. Oh well, the hoes weren’t at ringside anyway. Scotty2Hotty fights with Christian on the apron, and the crowd actually BOOS the fact that they’re eliminated. Man, why not give EVERY team a fat Samoan cornerman Ã¢â‚¬â€œ they’d ALL be over! D-Von rolls out and pulls Edge out while he tries a high-risk move, leaving the Dudleys, the Acolytes and the Hardy Boyz. I was calling for a heroic comeback win by the Hardyz at this point. Dudleyz hit a double-neckbreaker on Jeff (AGAIN called the 3D by JR), but Matt sneaks up and pushes D-Von out, leaving the Hardyz against the Acolytes. The crowd is just going NUTS for the Hardyz. Bradshaw and Jeff do a double-elimination bit, but the ref doesn’t see so the match continues. Faarooq goes over next, but again the ref is distracted. Great ending follows as we get a series of agonizing teases on the ring apron, followed by Jeff taking a dramatic bump WAAAAAY over the top rope and to the floor to give the Acolytes the win at 10:55. I don’t rate battle royales, but this was pretty cool. Hopefully they switch the title shot to the Hardyz due to them actually winning the match twice, and the fact that I don’t think I could take watching the Acolytes v. The Outlaws at Royal Rumble.
– Kurt Angle v. Steve Blackman. Blackman starts fast, then Angle comes back and misses a moonsault (!) and the match slows WAY down. I like Angle, but he’s not Ready For Prime Time yet, if this is any indication. Crowd starts with a legitimate “boringÃ¢â‚¬Â chant (as opposed to the one that’s usually for the express purpose of pissing Angle off) and we go back and forth for a bit before Angle finishes it with a german suplex. He should do it Benoit-style, by hitting three in a row, and call it the “Three I’sÃ¢â‚¬Â. Just a thought. Match wasn’t BAD or anything. Blackman attacks Angle with the numchaka and gets a POP! Whoa. Bet that made CRZ happy. **
– Four corners evening gown match in a swimming pool: Ivory v. Barbara Bush v. Jacqueline v. Miss Kitty. See how the WWF looks out for our best interests by not only having them half-naked, but half-naked and underwater? Sadly, Moolah and Mae Young are reffing, thus dampening my enthusiasm somewhat. Jackie goes first, and falls out of her top again, albeit subtlely this time. Kitty & Ivory double-team BB and rip her dress off. Ivory goes for the bra, but I guess she must actually be a man because she can’t get it undone. I sympathize, Ivory, really I do. Kitty pulls her back into the pool before she can finish the job (big heel heat there) and applies the “greco-roman zipper lockÃ¢â‚¬Â on her dress (to quote JR) to get it off and win the Women’s title at 2:57. Eh, any title defended in a swimming pool is meaningless anyway. Kitty gives a white trash victory speech, then declares that she’ll “get nakedÃ¢â‚¬Â anyway, with the caveat that “theyÃ¢â‚¬Â made her wear underwear. Those BASTARDS. No, wait, she pulls off the bra anyway, and there’s your $30 RIGHT THERE, BABY! Historic moment, as actual T&A makes it’s debut on WWF PPV and internet geeks everywhere go RUSHING to their video capture card to have the pictures in their friends’ Inbox by Tuesday morning. We’ll see how the PPV companies liked that little stunt. Gotta go ***** on the T&A scale for that one, since it wasn’t meant to be an actual match or anything.
– The Hollies v. Viscera & Rikishi Phatu. Wow, more grotesquely huge breasts. Short match, as the FBI (Fatboys, Inc) tosses the Hollies around for a while, but Viscera nails Phatu with a cappo kick by mistake and Hardcore Holly pins him at 4:22. Ã‚Â½* Good enough for what it was meant to be.
– European title: The British Bulldog v. Val Venis v. D-Lo Brown. D-Lo goes airborne quickly, hitting a plancha on both guys early. Bulldog & D-Lo double-team Val for a bit, then D-Lo turns on him. Repeat with various combinations. D-Lo badly blows a springboard move with Val, drawing some boos. D-Lo and Val then blow a double-hiptoss on Bulldog. D-Lo takes over on Val and gets a powerbomb for two, but Bulldog saves. D-Lo gets the frog splash for two on Bulldog, but Val hits both with the Money Shot and pins Bulldog for the title at 8:18. You had to know that Val would have the advantage in a three-way. Total car wreck match. *
– Cage match: Kane v. X-Pac. Kane’s pyro is on the top of the cage tonight. X-Pac locks him in the cage and goes after Tori, and Kane climbs out to chase. They get back in after some brawling and we’re underway. Kane dominates with power stuff and X-Pac bumps like a madman. They fight to the top and Kane gets crotched. Top rope legdrop from X-Pac gets two. Kane does the zombie situp and catches him by the throat coming off the top, then hits a tilt-o-whirl backbreaker and a big boot. The Outlaws try to run-in, but the cage is there. So they cut open the lock with bolt-cutters and slam the door on Kane’s head, then toss a chair in X-Pac. X-Factor on the chair, then X-Pac finds handcuffs and cuffs Kane to the top rope. A couple of chairshot prompts Tori to make the save, but she gets X-Factored. This pisses off Kane, who snaps the cuffs and blocks X-Pac’s escape attempt, then slams the door in HIS face, hits a clothesline off the top of the CAGE, and finishes it with a tombstone at 8:11. Whoa, that’s pretty definitive right there. Probably the best singles match Kane’s ever had, too. ***1/4
– Intercontinental title match: Chyna v. Chris Jericho. Chyna seems upset about something as she comes down. They trade foreams and brawl to the floor. More split reaction from the crowd, with Jericho winning 60/40. Back in and Chyna gets the handspring elbow and a DDT for two. Chyna gets caught in the ropes and Jericho works the thumb. Heh. Chyna reverses a powerbomb to a rana for two. Mid-air collision gets two for Chyna. She slingshots Jericho into an exposed turnbuckle for two. Pedigree is reversed by Jericho into a backslide for two. Jericho tries a back superplex, but Chyna falls on top for two. To the corner where Chyna tries a sunset flip, but Jericho rolls through, Walls of Jericho, and this time there’s NO ESCAPE! Chyna taps at 10:22 and the crowd goes NUTS. Y2J has arrived! Better match than Survivor Series, with less awkward moments and a good finish to boot. ***1/2
– Chyna confronts the champ (I love the sound of that) backstage and attacks him with a vicious handshake? Man, sportsmanship sucks ass.
– WWF tag team title: The New Age Outlaws v. The Rock N Sock Connection. Slow start with Mick and Dogg, then Rock comes in and the place EXPLODES. Another so-so sequence, with the Great One playing Rocky Morton. Mick gets the hot tag and Billy splashes his partner by mistake. Man, Billy hasn’t look the least bit motivated to do shit since his singles push was tanked. I think it might be time to either find a new character for him or just cut him loose and let him try WCW. He’s certainly not helping the WWF by standing on the apron and shaking his ass. Ref gets bumped, and Al Snow runs in, which pretty much everyone figured on. Dogg gets a two-count on Mick from the interference, with the Rock making the save. Ringbell to Mankind’s head gets two. Mick manages to fight out and Rock gets the hot tag. Rock Bottoms for everyone! Snow comes back for the DQ at 16:25. Man, what a weak ending. Okay match that obviously sets up the Rock-Snow feud. We’ll see if that works any better than Rock-Ass did. **1/4
– WWF title: Big Show v. Big Bossman. Show does some unnecessary violence, including giving Albert the honor of going through the Spanish table, big boot, chokeslam, goodbye Bossman, may you never get this high on the card again. And I think that is, as they say, that. Only ran 3:11, which is a good thing. Ã‚Â¼*
– Vince McMahon v. HHH. Vince tosses powder in HHH’s face to get the early advantage. Brawl outside the ring and to the back right away. Back through the crowd, then Mankind helpfully brings out a shopping cart full of goodies. More brawling on the floor, and now we go out to the military set. SANDBAG! SANDBAG! SANDBAG! Man, I wonder if JR was sitting there trying to resist calling the match that way. Why is there no juice yet? Vince takes a gatling gun to the head. Ouch. They fight to the back and Hunter escapes to the parking lot. Hunter has become the Hunted, you might say. Or not. Vince wanders around looking for him, and almost gets run over, as Hunter seems to have stolen Mankind’s car and takes a run at Vince. HHH with a slam and an elbowdrop on top of a limo, and we do the “I have your hair, so let’s walk, bee-yotch!Ã¢â‚¬Â bit all the way back to the arena. HHH climbs up a conveniently placed scaffolding, and Vince follows. Oh, geez, this is gonna for one of them. Vince takes the monster bump to a pile of mattresses below, and you can just TELL the crowd is waiting for HHH to follow with an elbow or something, but he just wusses out and climbs down. Vince finally blades after that fall. HHH wanders down to ringside and trash talks Stephanie. Hey, wait a sec, isn’t she wearing his leather jacket? Vince drags his carcass back to ringside and generally bleeds all over the place. Back in the ring and HHH goes for his trusty sledgehammer. Vince blocks with a low blow and grabs it. Stephanie runs in, but SHE wants the honors. Oh, like we don’t all know what’s going on here. Sure enough, she “changes her mindÃ¢â‚¬Â, allowing HHH to “stealÃ¢â‚¬Â it from her, nail Vince, and get the pin at 29:44 (!). Yeah, they gave it 30 minutes, it blows my mind too. And then, as everyone figured out by last week’s Smackdown, HHH & Steph do the HUG OF DOOM, thus revealing that they were playing Test & Vince for suckers all along. Whether it was “predictableÃ¢â‚¬Â or not, it was the correct ending to do, even if the match could have stood to lose 10 minutes or so. ***
The Bottom Line: No complaints here. I was expecting a suckfest, and instead everyone from the boss all the way down gave it a great effort and produced pretty much the best we were gonna see out of them. A very entertaining show, if not the most historically significant, that moves things along and gave the viewer their $30 worth. And the kitties, can’t forget those.