Well, trying something new here. My live stream of conscience for the Unforgiven replay. I missed the actual show because I was watching the Emmy awards, which for the most part were pleasantly surprising thanks to who won and ultimately a train wreck due to the numerous terrible production screw-ups.
So thanks to the Emmys running long, I missed the opening video package that I can only assume was spectacular. Say what you want about the in-ring product, these guys know how to deliver on their video work.
And our opening match is the Punk/Burke match. Shocker that they are going to disrespect this thing even more by having it jerk the curtain. The match for the most part has been what we’ve seen before. The ending, however, is another story. A roll-up? Punk has one of the most over finishers out there and they have him win with a roll-up? Kind of unsatisfying. One thing I like is that Burke and Punk were still jawing at each other after the pinfall. Now it did look like it was a “flukeÃ¢â‚¬Â win, at least he kept the belt. Hell, I’m happy because I picked him in the roundtable. Another great thing about Punk is that he really treated the belt like something he cares about. He kissed it when he gave the belt away and celebrated when he won.
Wow, JBL doesn’t look that great tonight. He looks like he’s green tinted and about a hundred years old. He’s a complete contrast to the way he looked on Smackdown on Friday with his blonde hair and healthy tan.
Alright, the tag match is next. They are doing a nice job telling the story with the video replays. And a topical ref-fixing reference from JBL. I still really love MVP’s entrance ramp. That is one gimmick that I am glad they kept. Porter also knows how to sell his pyro to make him look like a big deal. For years, the WWE just tacked pyro onto a guy’s entrance to get him over. This is one guy that is working hard to earn it. Plus, MVP is sporting his new t-shirt, which I’m sure is available now at an inflated rate on WWEShop.com.
And here comes Matt Hardy. You know, his entrance music was a decent song once but now I’m just sick of hearing it. Deuce and Domino’s music, on the other hand, was never acceptable. I will put it over, though, because it’s a great late 80’s throwback song. Way to go Jim Johnston. Enjoy that revenue. Hey, blue jeans from D&D tonight. Blue jeans and black shirts. They now look like a Gap ad gone bad. I’m kinda surprised that Cherry has continued to be so far removed from everyone else on TV. The fact that Hayes has resisted mixing her in with the rest of the Divas actually gives her an independent feel.
Hardy and MVP argue over who should start. Nice “Little ThingsÃ¢â‚¬Â moment as MVP slips in to start the match. Domino with a nice little fake punch stance like he’s in a bad 50’s greaser movie. Wait, did JBL just reference Harvey Wimpleman? Nice. I am noticing that the Smackdown guys look a lot different live. They look a little faster and a hell of a lot brighter. Anyone else notice that on CW the shows all look grainy and faded, while on USA they look brighter. Just saying.
MVP doing Hardy’s trademark ridiculous yell/shocker on the second rope was pretty funny. This match can’t decide if it’s a comedy match or a serious brawl. Poor Deuce and Domino having to sell for all of the shenanigans. Hardy just pulled out the Ballin’ elbow. If for nothing else, this feud is reminding people that Matt Hardy has a personality.
For some reason Deuce and Domino have cuffed the bottom of their jeans and instead of looking like greasers they look eerily reminiscent of the British Bulldog in his short-lived return a few years ago. Domino just hit a hell of a leg drop. Nice elevation. I’ll admit that I tape Friday Night Smackdown and I tend to fast forward a through some nonsense, so when I’m forced to actually sit and watch every minute of every match, I can find stuff to like.
It’s reassuring to hear the crowd cheer on Hardy live. With the amazing audio crew at the WWE, they can make it sound like anyone is over when the show is taped. Hell, they almost made it sound like the fans cared about Batista every week. So, when you hear a live crowd cheer a Smackdown guy, it lessens the fears that these wrestlers are only artificially over.
With Hardy in a rest hold, you’ve got MVP threatening to walk away, and there he goes. Nice double-team suplex deal by D&D. As soon as MVP saw Hardy kick out, he came back to the ring. See, this is how you handle the wacky tag team thing. It is making this match infinitely more watchable. I also like the fact that MVP didn’t just do the clichÃƒÂ©d turn on Hardy. I think it’s due to the fact that the WWE does so much wrong that when they do something even marginally right it looks incredible by contrast.
Twist of fate by Hardy and there’s the match. Well, got that one wrong. I guess MVP isn’t healthy enough yet to work a singles match. And Matt Hardy holds the US Title? Odd. Well, I might have gotten it wrong, but at least we get to see this storyline continue.
You can see JR in the background and he looks genuinely bored as Hardy walk away with both tag belts.
Replay of the Hall of Fame all month on PPV. Meh. Good line by Dusty when he pulled out the polka dotted hankie.
The FedEx forum looks like a giant FedEx store. Oh no, a Rey Mysterio interview. Oh how I wish I had this on Tivo. WWE Mobile does exclusive interviews? How embarrassed would you be to be in a meeting at work and your phone goes off because you have a new Rey Mysterio interview? I have no clue what Rey is saying without subtitles. Clearly he can’t even do the promo without the script, so why not just put it up on the screen. This guy isn’t a promo guy. I still think he’ll win the gold tonight because Rey does a decent job with the belt.
Chirple is 3rd? Damn. I wish he would fully stick with the new Motorhead “King of KingsÃ¢â‚¬Â song. That was the one thing that sucked about the DX reunion, that he dropped that song. Yep, Triple H looks clean and roid free. Makes sense that the hammer dropped when he was out because he was legally on roids to build up his strength. Now is the King of Kings thing sticking around until Shawn comes back and DX reunites or is that dead and gone?
JR sounds bored still. Lawler’s gotta be as happy as a pig in shit since they’re in Memphis. “Oh I’m the king, I’m the king, I’m the king of Memphis TennesseeÃ¢â‚¬Â I wish someone would do a Lawler/Kaufman DVD. Hmm, Booker highlights? Odd. I’m also pretty surprised that Hunter is the first guy out tonight.
And here comes Carlito. Thanks to Lillian Garcia’s overly-descriptive reading of the rules, we are reminded that Carlito can do whatever he pleases. He can use a chair, an illegal hold or a weapon. Whatever ends this thing quicker. Also, his haircut just looks ridiculous. It’s like JBL decided to haze him with a pair of shears.
Hey! Hunter threw a punch! That’s an illegal hold. I want a DQ, ref. A half-hearted Triple H chant began and died pretty quickly. And here comes the ultra-fake garbage can. Interesting that JR is continuing to call Coach the acting GM with no mention of Regal. Poor Regal. So it’s no count-out for Carlito? How great would it be if Carlito flees the building and gets in a car and drives off. Hunter can’t leave the ring or he’d lose. The match could go on the rest of the night. Hunter just gets a chair and sits in the corner of the ring and watches every other match.
JR just called Carlito a hall-of-shamer. Jesus. Sorry, King of Kings. This match is particularly bad. Like Sunday Night Heat bad. Carlito has been made to look like pure shit and Hunter is treating this like a comedy match.
And here comes the portion of the match where weapons bounce off Hunter. Get a gun and shoot him! It bounces right off! This is really not good. I’m sure it’s Carlito’s fault. The crowd is pretty damn quiet. I’m pretty bored. We just got a replay of Hunter not getting spit in the face with an apple. Carlito keeps going under the ring. Where’s Hornswaggle McMahon? I think he should help his brother-in-law.
Here comes another lame Triple H chant that dies even quicker. I rationalized that the purpose of this match was so that Hunter could ensure the crowd would root for him. Instead, Carlito’s X-Pac heat has infected the audience. Hell, Hunter just hit his comeback clothesline and the audience is silent. Big knee gets a mild pop. Face buster. Come on, just move to the “go homeÃ¢â‚¬Â. Please. I’m tired.
Carlito has got some powder and it’s in Hunter’s eyes. Oh no, it’s Hogan/Yoko all over again! Wait, no, the powder does nothing to stop Hunter (my eyes, the goggles do nothing!). Line of the night from JR, “You don’t want to lose to Carlito!Ã¢â‚¬Â Low blow and Pedigree and thanks for coming Carlito. The crowd reacts about as enthusiastically as if Hunter had just beat Henry O. Godwinn. JR just called this a physical match-up. Physical, mind you, means terrible. This one will not make a “best of Ã¢â‚¬Â DVD. And Hunter poses some more. And now he’s doing the point to the fans like he cares as if he’s Shawn. Holy shit! Hunter just high-fived a kid. “The Game is a big-game playerÃ¢â‚¬Â according to JR.
Wrestlemania in Orlando and I’ll be there. The tagline is “the Biggest Wrestlemania Under the SunÃ¢â‚¬Â. Ugh.
Speaking of which, Maria is interviewing Batista who sounds like a date rapist. And Dave better be setting up a heel turn. He says tonight is every man for himself. He is also referencing that he keeps losing. Apparently, the time for talking is over. Yet, he’s still talking.
Here comes the Women’s title match. It should, accord to JR, be “somethingÃ¢â‚¬Â. Beth Phoenix ain’t the prettiest gal out there, but she is big. Here comes an odd, wordless video package on her. No calls whatsoever from JR and the King in this one? Odd. She looks like a tranny version of Torrie Wilson.
Tonight she’s rocking what looks like Storm’s cape. Glamazon count is at 2 tonight. Over/under on that term is 6. She is an American version of Bull Nakano. Nice reference for once, JR.
Candice’s new music is ridiculous. It is still terrible. Glamazon count is at 3. Now they list the countries that watch this PPV. Do you think the country’s sit and wait until they get their shout-out? And Jerry just made another joke about him getting divorced. He’s like Johnny Carson only terrible.
The match has a lot of moaning. It’s like watching a tennis match. Glamazon count is 4. Candice is being woman-handled here and the crowd is still dead. Glamazon count is at 5. Lawler is trying hard to put this chick over as a beast. Hard to do when people still remember Luna. Now there was a woman you could set your watch to. The women’s title is 51 years old, and if I’m not mistaken the Fabulous Moolah still claims that she’s the reigning champ. And Candice is still getting worked over. I can’t believe people paid hard-earned money to see this thing live.
Here comes a backbreaker and Candice is still moaning like she’s back in Cinemax porn. Candice turns it into a neckbreaker and the crowd is now still indifferent. Candice’s hair is all over the ring. Ew. Glamazon count is at 6. She is also now the Goddess of Pain. Gorilla press slam. That was surprisingly hot.
Glamazon count is at 7. Candice roll-up and pin?! What the f*ck? Why? There goes my Roundtable picks. I really don’t ever want to see this match again. I did say that Candice would leave with the belt but I assumed that she was going to get DQed. Glamazon count is at 9. 2 while I was talking. Wait, there’s one more. 10 Glamazons. Beat that one into the ground.
No Mercy time. I wish they would remake that video game.
Khali interview time with Todd Grisham. Writer guy is holding a melon. I wonder if he’s going to have Khali crush it. Maybe Khali will swallow it whole. And now the cantaloupe has Rey’s mask on it. Jesus, Chavo had Rey masks, Khali has a Rey mask. Do they sell these things too? Oh man, listening to Khali scream out Rey is hilarious. I smell a ringtone. And Batista is represented by a watermelon. I didn’t know Dave was black.
And Alter Bridge wrote this nondescript song you’ll hear on the replay commercials all week.
Triple threat is next? Wow, that’s bad. They don’t even get near the top billing. Guess that’s Taker. Odd shot in the video package of Batista spinebustering Joey Mercury.
Here comes the Animal, apparently. And the fans are electric, according to a hoarse Cole. These fans have been dead for a few matches. Will the magic of Khali perk them up? Now they’re recapping all of Dave’s losses. And Rey is getting a new dramatic ring entrance song but no pop-up ramp. Thankfully no weird paint either. And Rey and Dave are “the best of friendsÃ¢â‚¬Â. Please, Dave, turn heel. There’s so much potential. Well it’s the Great Khali. Maybe he’ll come out as the Khali Machine. That would be awesome. No such luck as Khali just comes out looking slightly retarded. JBL just took a quick shot at Flair.
Please let this be over quickly. Dave and Rey double-team Khali but he knocks them away. Kick, wham, stunner! Wait, no such luck.
So it was nothing, nothing, then Rey and Dave go at it sort of. Rey getting some offense that Dave over-sells. Dave blocks the vice grip but gets the dumb chop to the head. Remember when people sold that thing? Here’s the vice grip! End this thing! Please! Wait, Rey’s got a chair. DQ! Wait?! It’s no-DQ? What the f*ck?
Khali’s out of the ring. Great. This thing just tacked on a few minutes. Khalie throws Batista into Tazz. Why is Tazz still there? He doesn’t have to sit through this.
It’s Rey and Khali in the ring. Apparently this is like some guy David versus some other guy Goliath. Khali is stomping an “Indian mudholeÃ¢â‚¬Â. What’s the difference between that and Austin’s mudhole? This one won’t beat its wife
And here comes a nerve pinch. Watch as Rey and the fans fade. Rey doesn’t look like he’s in pain, he looks bored. Here’s the vice grip on Rey. Batista’s back. Khali’s doing the Andre ropes trick and JBL lays the seeds of Dave’e heel turn by saying that he should go for Rey. And he does! Batista bomb! Blocked! 619 to Dave. 619 to Khali. Batista bomb to Rey onto Khali. Who will Dave spear? He goes after Khali and spinebusters him! Dave wins! Dave wins! New world champion Batista! How many fake exclamation points can I add to make it look like I care?! Dave wins! Dave wins! I care! I’m kidding! Take that wellness policy! Dave’s title win gets pyro! Rey gives Dave props!
Recap of the Hornswaggle storyline. Ugh. See my column last week for my thoughts on this disaster.
Hunter gives Batista a bottle of water! It’s like a passing of a torch! Only it’s water!
London and Kendrick are here and they are dressed like displaced New Orleans refugees. It takes JR 20 seconds to compare them to the Rock n’ Roll Express and the Rockers. Here comes the Redneck Wrecking Crew (a cool name that I don’t think they’ve ever actually been called).
They just called Kendrick and London the “Air ForceÃ¢â‚¬Â. Wow. Pack it up for the night, JR, it ain’t working for you. The match has so far been okay but nothing spectacular. The crowd apparently is so worn down from pretending to care about Batista’s title win that they are choosing to sit this one out. Like most of the matches on this show. Guess they’re saving it for their apathy towards Taker.
Kendrick and London do dental duty as they try to pry a cheer from the fans like they’re pulling teeth. Suicide dives met with no reaction.
Sorry, taking this time to check out what’s going on around the web. Poor OJ. I know I was looking forward to this match, but it just isn’t clicking the way I would hope so I’m sort of half-watching.
JR just messed up Paul London’s name 3 times in 20 seconds. The crowd is still dead after London gets the hot tag. Springboard stomp onto the back of Cade’s head gets a minor pop, which doesn’t match the awesomeness of the move. Dropsault pin gets broken up by Murdoch who had a hilarious reaction to the ref kicking him out of the ring. I’m telling you, Trevor could be big. There’s a doubleteam by the champs and Kendrick kicks out? Guess Henry’s match is getting cut for time. That would be great. Sliced Bread #2 turns into a sitdown spinebuster and it’s over. Finally got cooking in the last few minutes but overall it was mainly just there. Oh, by the way, Cade wasn’t legal when he laid out Kendrick. That’s called saving face.
Condemned DVD commercial. Own the movie shareholders call, “something that we should have cut our losses on a long time ago.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Wow, Cena/Orton doesn’t get top billing?
Alright, Papa Cena’s there. Maybe he’ll do a heel turn. Alright, get this thing over with so that we can see Taker’s glorious return. You gotta figure that if they had Batista go over that Orton ain’t winning the title. On the other hand, this is his 364th day as champ, which makes me think that Cena might not be walking out with the gold. Who am I kidding? I called this to end with a DQ cop-out and I’m sticking with it.
Cena is “trembling with rageÃ¢â‚¬Â as he throws some punches. The fans are booing? Alright, the Cena nonsense reactions need to stop. At this point, they’re booing a guy that’s fighting for his dad’s honor. Look, you ain’t getting the belt off him by booing, so just go along with it. Maybe I wouldn’t be so pissed if it weren’t for the fact that these people cheer Undertaker and Jeff Hardy when Taker is more tired then Cena and Hardy is less motivated the Cena. Ortons’ face has just been referred to as puffy.
Well, now Orton’s fake punching Cena. Here comes a dueling “Let’s go OrtonÃ¢â‚¬Â/Ã¢â‚¬ÂLet’s go CenaÃ¢â‚¬Â chant like we’re in the Impact Zone. But we’re not because the production value is decent and there’s more than 20 people in the arena. The crowd is way into this dueling chant. Here comes more Cena punching. DQ? What the f*ck? Who saw that coming? Shocker. Well when they want a cop-out, they give them one.
Now we’re going to get post-match shenanigans as Orton is looking to attack Cena’s pop, Jose Lothario. You know, it’s funny that John’s never taken the Orton kick to the head. Now Orton’s trapped in the STFU. Jose Lothario just kicked Orton in the head and he does it about as efficiently as Orton does. So Randy sold for Cena Sr. and he looks like he’s unconscious. I guess Cena will drop the belt at No Mercy like I called. I guess he can lose to the stupid punt to the head since he’s yet to take it.
Bring on the Taker.
John walks out holding his dog tags available now on WWEShop.com. We now get a replay of the DQ to remind people what they paid for. We also get a replay of Cena Sr getting yanked from the crowd and the poor old guy landed right on his head. Orton has been really sloppy with the poor old guy. Come on, Randy, Cowboy Bob taught you better then that.
Coach and Cena Senior in the back? I smell Orton/Cena 3 with Cena Senior on a Pole. Well, we’re getting the rematch at least, but it’s a last man standing. Yep, here comes the kick to the head finish. Hey, here comes John Cena to yell at Coach because he’s now “crazyÃ¢â‚¬Â. The Cenas leave arm in arm.
Hey, there’s JBOld and Cole on camera talking about No Mercy in the Windy City. Speaking of things that blow, here comes Henry/Taker.
A video package about this feud? No way! Never saw one of those. As this video package goes on, I sit here and hope that this match ends quickly.
Somebody going to get their wheat thrashed indeed. Mark Henry looks extra sweaty tonight. Time to job, Henry. Just do it quickly. See, he’s a silverback because he’s big and black. He even takes time to yell at some virgins in the front row.
And here comes the Undertaker. I feel druids coming. Gong. Chanting. Black and purple. Gong. Pyro. Repetition. They could just replay their match from Mania and no one would care. Lightning just lit 2 Taker symbols on fire. There’s a third symbol rising in the air like a Vegas lounge show set. And there he is. Through hellfire and brimsto oh, wait. And the Undertaker is taking his sweet f*cking time to get to the ring. The set has morphed and looks like the Nitro set circa 2000. GET IN THE RING ALREADY! More pyro and more flames. Henry looks bored, then realizes he’s on camera so he looks scared. Chimmel really gets into announcing Taker. Well, he’s almost into the ring at this point. And the lights are on.
Death Valley must have a tanning bed. Taker’s orange. HBK at Mania orange. Taker removes his coat and there goes the hat and oh come on! Get this thing started already! There could have been 4 CM Punk matches during this entrance. The mascara looks terrible combined with the orange skin. He just looks like an old guy with makeup.
Stare-down. Electrifying. Riveting. Painful. Here come punches. For the main event, the crowd is pretty silent.
Stinger splash onto Henry. Second one gets caught and he gets driven into the corner by Mark. And we’re back to punching. Henry goes down with a headbutt. So no one takes the guy down for months but he falls to a headbutt. Weak.
Hey, it’s Old School, but it’s blocked. JBL covered up the no reaction from the fans by calling it “respect from the audienceÃ¢â‚¬Â. They’re on the top rope and it looks like it’ll be a suplex and it is. End this thing already.
So there are like 8 splashes. JBL again covers the silence by calling it “shockÃ¢â‚¬Â from the fans. Now they’re exchanging blows as the fans exchange exit strategies. I just want to go to bed. Please let me go to bed. End this thing. Mark Henry hits what looks like a Rock Bottom. The Undertaker “ran into a brick wallÃ¢â‚¬Â, which was the same thing Rey ran into earlier against Khali. Buy a thesaurus, JBL. You’ve got the money.
Henry f*cks up a slam and gets another splash. The crowd I think has already left the building. Bare in mind I saw Bossman/Big Show for the title live and in person and was less bored. Taker sits up and please let this be the end. Splash in the corner by Taker. Another one. Old School attempt and success. Chokeslam? Please let this be it. Please.
Oh f*ck you! Why did Mark Henry kick out of that? Seriously, if you’re going to job, just job to that. I think the fans have a class-action suit if someone watches this match and then tries to drive a car. F*CK! A bear hug. Here comes another 10 minutes of rest holds. Henry’s on the second rope but there’s the last ride. I think he killed Henry with that landing. IT’S OVER! THANK YOU JEBUS! THIS NIGHTMARE IS OVER!
There’s pain and then there’s pain. This was like a root canal with no anesthetic. This was like sex with a sandpaper condom. This was like TNA.