In Memoriam: Dr. James Van Allen. After the Earth decided to switch to suspenders, he just gave up the will to live.
In Memoriam II: Mike Douglas, one of the Holy Trinity of Chicago Talk Show Hosts with Donahue and Oprah. How would the world be different if he didn’t have a two-year-old Tiger Woods on his show?
In Memoriam III: Heather Clarke, who helped us to realize that behind the larger-than-life sports stars are the spouses who really make their lives worth living.
Yeah, I blew off Tuesday. I wasn’t feeling well, honestly. This job and its bizarre hours is taking its toll a bit. I mean, it’s now Sunday afternoon, and I still haven’t finished Smackdown. There just hasn’t been enough time to do everything. Well, I made time, sacrificing some much-needed sleep, and got this one off. Yeah, it’s gonna suck, but until I get used to this shit (or get a different job), that’s the way it’s gonna go. Let’s do the shows…
THE ECW SHORT FORM
Mike Knox over Tommy Dreamer (Pinfall, swinging neckbreaker): Is it an Angle Advancement Match when you’re not sure which angle is being advanced? And wouldn’t you like to have been a fly on the wall in Johnny Ace’s office when the discussion about Tommy going back to the ring full-time and giving up his office duties to Simon Dean happened? “Gee, Tommy, you’re doing a good job, but we need you in the ring full-time to put over Mike Knox and Test. How about giving up your job to Bucci for now?” Dynamic Dude or not, I don’t think he would have survived that one. Hell, if Beulah had been in there, he wouldn’t have survived.
How courteous of Knox to hold himself up for Tommy
Mike Knox and Test over Sandman (DQ, Fun With Canes): Well, at least the Angle Advancement situation was helped. Nice structure in the booking there with the back-to-back matches linked perfectly by Heyman. You can kinda tell that Heyman had a bit of control over the booking on this show, huh?
Oh, poor Fullington…
Kevin Fertig over Al Snow (Pinfall, crucifix powerbomb): Hey, this whole vampire thing is starting to work. Of course, it’s helped that Fertig’s improved as a wrestler since the Mordecai disaster. Not much of an improvement, but enough. You know what would really get him over, though? Have an opponent juice during a match, and get Fertig to start licking the blood. Of course, there are two reasons to recommend against that: 1) the whole “liver enzymes” situation, which implies that blood-borne illness is raging rampant in all the locker rooms (licking Balls Mahoney’s blood must be a death sentence) and 2) given the nature of the audience, even a Smackdown audience, it’d turn Fertig face instantly. He’s already verging on it with the look and the hot chick. Kevin, get Dustin Runnels on the phone to ask him about what happens in these cases.
By the way, anyone else think they missed a trick by not naming him “Caliban”?
If you want to complain about Fertig using the ropes for this move, complain when Trish uses them for the Stratusfaction too
Kurt Angle over Sabu, Number One Contender’s Match (DQ, Stoner-ference): Pretty good match until the Sports Entertainment Ending, actually. Angle and Sabu fit together a lot better than I suspected they would. This is, of course, entirely due to Kurt’s unsurpassed ability to adapt styles and make guys look like a million bucks. Guess that Van Dam wasn’t that hurt from that suplex he took wrong on Sunday, since if he was, they wouldn’t do the obvious Triple Threat set-up (the not-so-obvious part was that it’s going to be a Ladder Match). However, we pretty much can figure out the result of that one right now: Van Dam and Angle f*ck around with each other to the point where Sabu gets the win. Sabu faces TBS at SummerSlam, Angle and Van Dam feud against each other. Just for once, do a twist to this, please?
If this was a Punjabi Prison, Sabu would be the bitch
Only one match at SummerSlam with an as-yet-to-be-announced opponent (Sabu), and a jam-packed show wrestling-wise. So, no room for angles, I guess, but I did get a couple of caps…
Oh, just have them unmask to reveal the Bashams, will you?
Amazingly, he looked less stereotypically gay as a blond
THE IMPACT SHORT FORM
Chris Sabin, Sonjay Dutt, and Jay Lethal over Kevin Nash, Alex Shelley, and Johnny Devine (Pinfall, Sabin pins Devine, Cradle Shock): Meh. Really, meh. That’s what Kevin Nash does to a greybeard like me. Anything with the five other guys, I’d be able to drain my body of blood, distill the blood, and market what’s left as The Ultimate Viagra Substitute. Add Nash, and there’s a sudden droop. That’s why I don’t have much hope for the match at Hard Justice. Yeah, Sabin’s good. Sabin’s really good. But he has to drag a watchable match out of Nash (and more specifically out of Nash’s near-nonexistent knees). That’s almost impossible even if Nash is motivated, and how motivated Nash will be depends on how they book the ending. All in all, meh.
To Nash, this must be like what veal is to the rest of us
Homicide over Christopher Daniels (Pinfall, Hernandez Cracker-Jack): All of the whiny bitch ROH fanboys (sorry for the double redundancy) are complaining about this match not being the main event. What they should be complaining about is that a perfectly good match was ruined by the Angle Advancement shenanigans. What they REALLY should be complaining about is that they blew this combination on a PPV Pimp Match. Get your priorities straight, bitches.
Fucking Konnan has to ruin everything
Abyss over Shark Boy (Pinfall, Black Hole Slam): How many times have we seen this particular pairing? Can’t they use someone else as Abyss Snacks for a change? May I suggest Big Sump Pump in that role?
We know how this ends
Christian over Big Sump Pump (DQ, Jarrett-ference): Who cares? Really, who cares? Does anyone have the ability to care about anything Christian does anymore? And if you ever had the ability to care about Big Sump Pump after, oh, 1997, you’re a stupid piece of shit who can’t read any of my columns without moving your lips. So this was one big ol’ bag of apathy to end the show. Just get it over with. And if these two end up feuding with each other, great, it saves me time and effort as I can just disregard it instead of taking it seriously.
Christian’s tempted to investigate the sucking power of a Big Sump Pump
Well, Hard Justice is pretty much set, so there’s very little in regard to this to discuss. Of course, that doesn’t stop me from getting caps when necessary…
Apparently Rhiyno has some issues with furniture. Probably stems from ECW.
As a 41-year-old with a full head of hair, I can’t empathize with either of them
Because then it’ll be on sale
THE SMACKDOWN SHORT FORM
Novocaine Helms over Tatanka, Obviously Not A Title Match (Pinfall, Shining Wizard): Interesting only from the social experiment aspects. First of all, it was decent, but not as good as the two Tatanka/Grenier matches. From a personal standpoint, though, it allowed me a perfectly valid comparison. I find that I actually care slightly more about Grenier than I do about Helms. And I thought I was completely apathetic about both of them. Surprise, surprise.
Tatanka thought it was a one-night thing; Novocaine thought it was more.
Aaron Stevens and KC James over Paul London and Brian Kendrick, Non-Title Match (Pinfall, Stevens pins Kendrick, rollup): The moment it was announced as non-title, you knew who was going over, so all you could wonder about was how the ride there was going to be. Pretty good, actually. Kendrick and London don’t work as well with them as they do with Kash and Noble, but the simple reason for that is that Kash and Noble have a lot more mileage on them. The kids are good enough now, though, to give us an entertaining match. What I don’t want “creative” to do is give them the exact same booking and push as MNM had. Let them show off their skill and not rely on various methods of cheating to get over. It’s not something much to ask, you know.
London and Kendrick punish Stevens for disrespecting Austin and Billy
FudgePacker over Rey-Rey (COR, presumably; Chavito-ference plus Vickie-ference): If you’re going to do an Angle Advancement Match as the transition match, the angle had better be of the greatest importance. The Rey-Rey/Chavito angle does not qualify. Add that on to the presence of FudgePacker, and I had a serious long period of Not Giving A Shit.
Oh, if only Rey-Rey could knock all of his teeth out and break his jaw…
Vito over Sylvain Grenier (Submission, keylock): Hey, not bad. What’s gotten into Grenier lately? Two really good matches with Tatanka, and now a good match against Vito. Could it have something to do with Dupree coming back to the big leagues with ECW? And if that’s the case, is Conway headed for an upper-mid-card push? Or is that too much to ask?
Something you’re not going to find at your average “up-skirt” website
Sylvester Terkay over Starr (Mark Starr? Ken Starr?) (Submission, stretch half-nelson): And so the push continues. I’ll take a wait-and-see attitude. A lot of it depends on how they push Burke as well. As demonstrated, he’s pretty good in the ring as well. How far will they go with each? And who will be more deserving?
Now that honestly looks painful
DAVE and Bobby Lashley over Mister Regal and Mister Finlay (Pinfall, Batista pins Regal, spinebuster): My only thought during this match was, “If this wasn’t on network television…if this was on PPV and given at least twenty…would it be the stiffest match in the history of wrestling?” Seriously, if it was on PPV, all four guys would have been gushing hardway five minutes in. They had to tone this down for the network audience. That’s my only fault with it. The concept is great, the commentary was terrific, the action was good and fast-paced, and the wrestlers meshed perfectly. It just needed time and the green light to enter the Brutal Zone.
DAVE shows that he’s back in the most emphatic fashion possible
Another action-packed episode. Ignoring the Diva Search, there wasn’t much to work with, really.
Vickie reveals to Chavito how she got Eddy to calm down and think straight
Oh, that’s it. I’ve got to get some sleep before I go out to work tonight. I’ll be back Tuesday. If not, I’ll be back a week from Tuesday, since I won’t be able to do a Short Form due to certain sundry things (namely an interview in Indy on Friday afternoon). Until I see you next, have a good one.