Well this certainly wasn’t the update I was planning on posting today. I was half way through recording a video update, explaining that WWR would not be returning until next month now, and that the WM Special would be online within 2 weeks, and bigcal.co.uk would be seeing some actual content this year.
And then half way into recording I got a phone call. I recently got a job (finally), which was only part time, 3 days a week. Was great. I was working, earning some money, and still had plenty of time to work on videos. Now they want to increase my hours to full time, working 5 days a week. Not permanent for now, but still, with this extra time (double what I was doing before), I doubt I’ll have the time or energy to get any new content out. Sucks, I know, but it is what it is. While working full time and earning all that extra money for a while will be great, I do hope to go back down to part time in due time, as making videos is what I want to do in life, not working in the job I’m in now. So as of this moment, all my videos are currently postponed until further notice.
The other thing that is going on with me atm (which is what was causing me to push back the return of WWR by a month), is that I’m not sleeping much. I’m used to not getting much sleep, been a terrible sleeper most of my life, but its currently getting worse and having a job really isn’t helping (and going full time for the time being REALLY isn’t going to help). I’m attempting to get a doctors appointment to see about it, but that seems harder to do than you’d think.
So in the meantime, I’ll continue to post little updates on Twitter, as well as maybe some written content (Extreme Rules 2013 predictions, for example).
So this is one of the lowest selling PPV’s in WWE history, and is widely regarded as one of the worst PPV’s of all time too. We all know the story of Paul Heyman’s plans for the show and how things were changed against his wishes which essentially caused him to leave the company for 6 years. But is the show REALLY that bad? Was it worth quitting over? I remember sod all about this one, including the matches as only 2 were announced prior to the event, and they still only advertise those 2 matches on the actual DVD cover! As well as advertising WM 23 too. Which is odd. Seriously, look at the back cover of the DVD. Bottom right… WM 23 logo.
MNM Vs The Hardy Boys
I love the 4 way ladder match that takes place at Armageddon a few weeks after this that involves both teams, and I love their RR tag match as well. So I’m expecting this to be good at the very least.
Fuck me, did Jeff get fucking FAT in 06 and I didn’t notice? Oh wait, might have been the IC belt, he had it under his t-shirt LOL. Shame Matt couldn’t use that same excuse in a couple of years time…
SHE’S A CRACK WHORE chants at Melina, which she responds to with a very loud scream. That’ll teach those fake ECW fans!
LOL at MNM trying to do the Hardy’s schtick in the ring. Poetry in Motion looks terrible . Thankfully we are saved from an attempted Twist of Fate and Swanton combination. lmao at the ECW chants because they do some high flying moves. The fake ECW fans don’t even know WHY they should chant ECW lmao.
Thing I liked most about this match was the teased finish with the Hardy’s showing MNM how POM is done correctly, then go for the TOF + Swanton combination… only for Nitro to drag Mercury out of the ring and Jeff crashes and burns!
Match is really like 2 matches in one, due to having 2 FIP sections to it. The first one is average as hell, with Matt being FIP, and MNM really not doing a damn thing to make their work over portion of the match look good.
Then we go into the second match, after the crash and burn of Jeff, and this time he takes a beating, and MNM actually do a good job at controlling. They work over Jeff’s back nicely, which was the smart thing to do given the fact Jeff just missed the Swanton.
Great teamwork from MNM, and come cool double team moves to continue to hurt Jeff’s back too.
After the hot tag, we get Matt and Jeff attempting… something that ends up with Nitro hitting a hurricanrana from the ropes to Jeff… but the whole set up looked terrible and confusing and awkward and fuck lol.
Finishing stretch has some sweet false finishes, before the Hardy’s finally get the win.
Overall… mostly really good, but take the first 10 minutes off the match and it could have been great. Still prefer their RR encounter, but hey, a good match on DTD!
Rating: ***1/4 – 2
Matt Striker Vs Balls Mahoney
Oh sweet jebus this looks terrible on paper. Striker has a picture of his head on his arse. Yeah. So this is apparently a “Striker’s Rules” match. No eye gouging. No hair pulling. No moves off the top rope. And no foul language. Yawn.
Well huh, this isn’t actually that bad. They do some nice shit at the start with Balls surprising people, mainly Striker, by actually “wrestling” instead of brawling (not really sure why, because let’s face it, hair pulling and eye gouging isn’t a big part of brawling lol). Then they go to lock up and for some reason, Balls randomly (and I do mean randomly, as he has NO REASON IN THE SLIGHTEST) looks away allowing Striker to deck him in the face and from there he does some nifty arm work. Did kinda lol at Striker essentially doing a back bump onto Ball’s arm at one point though. Looked a little dumb .
Then Balls wins. Seems a little out of nowhere, but whatever. Mostly a fun match, which surprised me.
Rating: **1/2 – 1
Backstage Sabu is on the floor not moving. So it’s already better than any of his matches. BULLSHIT chants from the fans.
Elijah Burke & Sylvester Terkay Vs Little Guido Maritato & Tony Mamaluke
I smell a squash match! And I hope to jebus it is. I don’t wanna see any of these guys wrestler each other for very long. I like Nunzio (Guido), but fuck, everyone else in this match can GO TO HELL.
Remember Trinity in the WWE? Well she was there for like a second or two.
I wish this match was only here for a second or two. Lasts far longer than it should have, and it was fucking terrible. Not even a squash either. Go away please.
Rating: DUD – 0
Davari Vs Tommy Dreamer
Urgh. I’m starting to realise why they didn’t announce anything other than the tag match and EC. Nobody in their right fucking mind would have ordered this show knowing the matches lmao. Ok, so hardly anyone ordered not knowing them, but still… not knowing left some wonder and the potential for some good matches.
90% of this match is just Divari applying a sleeper hold to Dreamer. Khali gets sent to the back early on. Divari wins by cheating. I feel cheated by watching this.
Khali murders Dreamer at the end. Yey.
Rating: DUD – 0
Paul Heyman replaces the injured Sabu with Harcore Holly in the Elimination Chamber match.
Mike Knox & Kelly Kelly Vs Kevin Thorn & Ariel
MIKE KNOX. He doesn’t seem as big as he is now, and he doesn’t have the beard. So he probably sucks. Speaking of sucks; Kelly Kelly. She wishes Punk good luck in the EC match later tonight.
Do people still have a hard on for Kevin Thorn? I remember everyone creaming over his Mordecai gimmick, then creaming again over the Thorn “Vampire” gimmick too, and then of course raging because he got released. Even though he fucking sucked. And not in the Vampire way. Or Kelly Kelly way. Well, in one of the Kelly Kelly ways. She sucks on multiple levels. I’m saying she sucks a lot of cock and is a terrible wrestler. Which one is Thorn? Terrible wrestler, obviously. As far as I know anyway. Not that it matters, but I don’t think he does. Suck cock, that is. He definitely sucks as a wrestler.
Is everyone but Kelly Kelly a heel in this match btw? Oh hello Ariel’s arse. What was I saying? Oh yeah this sucks. Mostly. Knox actually shows signs of being good. He isn’t “flying bear” good yet, but there are signs of potential.
After the guys try their best to not suck, they tag in the ladies, and lmao Kelly Kelly might be up there as one of the worst female wrestlers of all time. Ariel gets a pass because of that ass (yeah I said ass instead of arse, but I needed to for the rhyme to work so SHUT UP). That and she isn’t horrible either. Kelly kelly just needs to quit the business and… oh she did. Took far too long but she finally did.
lmao at Kelly’s reaction to Knox not accepting the tag and walking away, leaving Ariel to murder her.
Bad, bad match. Only redeming quality is that ARSE. Which makes it better than the last couple of matches.
For some reason The Sandman shows up to save Kelly Kelly. Because. That’s all I got.
Rating: 1/4* – 0
The Big Show Vs CM Punk Vs RVD Vs Hardcore Holly Vs Test Vs Bobby Lashley – ECW Title Extreme Elimination Chamber Match
What is an Extreme Elimination Chamber match you ask? An Elimination Chamber match but with WEAPONS. Wish they’d bring it back every now and then tbh. Spice things up a little.
Holly and RVD start this thing, which I guess is ok given that RVD sliced open Holly’s back with that table not too long ago so it gives them some time alone inside the chamber. Of course Heyman’s plan for the match was a lot better.
They do mostly good stuff together for the first 5 minutes, so nothing really to complain about here even with RVD in the ring lol. With the 5 minutes up, the first person out of a pod is… CM PUNK! Fans are firmly, FIRMLY behind the Second City Saint. But apparently popularity doesn’t mean anything in WWE… except if you are popular AND Vince likes you.
Sweeeeeet use of the chair that Punk brings in. Love the legdrop counter with it. RVD gets absolutely KILLED with the chair a couple of times. Holly catching Punk and swinging him into the side of the chamber makes me smile. Why? I’m not right in the head. But it looked cool.
Bah, things were looking good… and then Test entered. Hopefully he isn’t going to be fucking useless. He has a crowbar. So at least he can hit people with that rather than attempt to wrestle. lmao in less than a minute Test is down and nearly out. Ahhh fuck. CM Punk is eliminated first. BULLSHIT. BULLSHIT. BULLSHIT. BULLSHIT. That’s what I’m chanting right now. The fans aren’t though. They loved Punk at the start, but since he was eliminated by an ECW Original its ok apparently. So Punk is gone. Guess that was sticking it to Heyman. “Oh, you want CM Punk to win? ELIMINATED FIRST!”
Test boots Holly in the face… ref counts to 2… everyone is confused and Holly is eliminated. Well done Test. First move you’ve hit that wasn’t a weapon shot and you managed to fuck up. He makes up for it at least by hitting an elbow drop off the top of a pod to RVD who has a steel chair on him! Bye bye RVD. Oh, NOW the fans chant BULLSHIT? But not when Punk was eliminated? THAT is Bullshit.
Lashley is is out next, so we get Lashley with a table Vs Test. OH HOW EXCITING. The Basham Brothers aka Heyman’s private security attack the referee on the outside and prevent the pod from getting unlocked. SO how does he get out? HE BREAKS THROUGH THE STEEL CHAIN ROOF WITH A WOODEN TABLE.
Test gets mauled. Lashley spears him. And he have a full minute with Lashley ON HIS OWN IN THE RING lmao. So how does Lashley fill time? HE THROWS THE TABLE AT BIG SHOW’S POD lmao.
Show finally gets into the match and he has a barbed wire baseball bat. Lashley has a chair as a shield. The bat gets stuck in the chain, and for some reason the referee gets it loose…
Lashley throws Big Show through a pod, so how does Show respond? By smashing himself through the other side lmao. TAKE THAT LASHLEY!
Lashley wins. And goes on to have an absolutely dire title reign that also results in Vince McMahon holding the title.
Match overall isn’t bad. Far from it. Plenty of good here, but there is also some stupid shit too. Punk being eliminated first. Test fucking up a PIN FALL. Lashley in general. Enough to stop it being a great match, but not enough to stop me from liking it quite a bit.
Rating: *** – 2
CAL SCALE OVERALL – 5
5 points overall on the CAL SCALE isn’t exactly good… but there are still some events far worse than this. A handful of RR and WM events are worse than this show. Just a shame that really, outside of the opening tag and the main event there isn’t anything worth seeing. Balls/Striker might not be bad, but I wouldn’t recommend anyone go out and watch it.
Shield Vs Sheamus/Orton/Show – Well fuck me, WHC match NOT opening WM? That’s a surprise in itself, but this is the opener? Guessing Ziggler is cashing in then? Ambrose. Is. Awesome. Need I say more? Liked Shield controlling Show for a while. He’s obviously the biggest threat so you’d expect them to avoid him, but getting him down was their first opening and they rolled with it because they CAN. Because they are a great team. Show spearing everyone was awesome. SHIELD WIN! Yes! ***1/2
Are the really still trying to sell us on Rock/Cena II? During the show? They’ve had like 3 sodding years to do it. Fuck off already.
Henry Vs Ryback. Open air arenas suck. Crowds sound terrible on TV. Tweets during WM? Fuck off. Match is ok when Henry isn’t doing a bear hug. OH SHIT! HENRY WON! There goes my accumulator .
JBL and King are playing with toys…
Tag Titles Match – Ziggy cashing in later then? Callback tease was amazing. Big E didn’t suck. That alone is impressive. Match was fairly short and a ton of fun, exactly what I was hoping for. Tag champs retains… so Ziggler is cashing in, right?
Jericho Vs Fandango – MULTIPLE DANCERS TO HOPEFULLY HIDE THE FACT FANDANGO CAN’T DANCE! Couple of awkward spots, but other than that a solid match that was structured exactly how it should have been, then Jericho puts over a young star for the finish. I enjoyed it.
So WM is just one long advert with pesky matches in between now?
More Rock/Cena build? SERIOUSLY?
THEME FROM ROCKY! I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT IS HAPPENING! WHO IS THIS TWAT TALKING OVER THE MUSIC? FUCK OFF! SOMEONE PLEASE EXPLAIN THIS TO ME!
WM 29: Adverts, shitty musical performances, and the occasional wrestling match.
WHC Match – Ziggler cashing in? No . Decent match. Submission counters were nice.
PUNK VS UNDERTAKER :mark:. Finally, a good music performance! Damn them teasing THE DIVE. Punk kicked out of the Tombstone? Did not see that coming! Shades of WM 17, only replace sledgehammer with urn lol. Testament to Punk’s popularity, managing to split the crowd in an Undertaker match at WM! Great stuff. ****
PORK sign! I marked.
ANOTHER fucking Rock/Cena video?Match has had more build tonight than the last year.
HHH Vs Lesnar – BROCK IN A BEANIE! :lmao at Lesnar’s roar + pose. Some sick suplexes on the table + broken table. HBK running like a bitch from Lesnar LOL. Damn this is slow, and not in a good way. Lesnar fumbling about with the steps isn’t helping. HBK superkicking Heyman is the highlight. Liked HHH using the Kimura, and Lesnar’s repeated escape attempts only for HHH to lock it in again. Lesnar lost, but at least it took a hell of a lot to do it. Long time in Kimura, DDT on steel steps, sledgehammer to head and then Pedigree on the steps. Not that good though. SS was worlds ahead of it in every way.
No 8 person tag? Oh well.
Rock Vs Cena – No grand entrances? Yey… though that does leave a lot of time left for the match. Urgh. Match is TERRIBLE. Boring, dull, slow shit with more rest holds, followed by about 15 minutes of them literally doing nothing but hitting finishers. Fuck off.
Overall, while only 2 matches stand out to me (shield tag and undertaker/punk), I enjoyed the hell out of the show bar the final 2 matches.
Tons of Funk & The Funkadactyls Vs Team Rhodes Scholars & The Bella Twins
Oh how exciting this one is. I’m certainly not interested in Miz/Barrett, but THIS match made it onto the card over the IC title match which is relegated to the pre-show? LOL. If it goes longer than 5 minutes I’ll be surprised. Heels will bump around, the divas will do some awkward cat fighting shit, and then they’ll do a finish.
Winners – Tons of Funk & The Funkadactyls. They’ll probably run through the heels, hit some big splash moves for the win and then dance and shit.
Chris Jericho Vs Fandando
While I’m not exactly giving a fuck about this one, I do think it could end up being the sleeper match of the show. Give it around 15 minutes and there’s a good chance it will deliver a solid match at least.
Winner – Fandango. Jericho is back on his yearly “put everyone in sight over” run, and with Fandango getting a push atm, seems like the logical choice. Huh, guess that means Jericho is gonna win then?
Mark Henry Vs Ryback
I can think of a ton of guys better for Henry to face at WM, but who knows, could be a solid big man slugfest. Keep it under 10 minutes and just have both men power each other around and it should be a ton of fun.
Winner – Ryback. I soooo want Henry to win just because he’s fucking AWESOME, but Ryback has been losing big matches every since HIAC with Punk last year. He kinda needs the win.
Team Hell No (c) Vs Dolph Ziggler & Big E Langston
Big E sucks. Bryan being suck in a tag match at WM sucks. But it could end up being a good match. Half expecting new tag champs, half expecting no title change, leading to Dolph cashing in to make up for the loss (assuming the WHC match doesn’t open the show lol).
Winners – Team Hell No. I want these two to split up sooo fucking bad because Bryan needs to be a singles wrestler again. BUT I don’t see them shoving Dolph into yet another meaningless tag team right now because he’s almost guaranteed at this point to be the WHC very soon, if not tonight.
Triple H Vs Brock Lesnar
People either loved or hated their SS match. I for one loved it. Can it be topped here? Maybe. NHB will let them brawl and shit, and I’m kinda expecting some blood in this one, just to put over the feud and whatnot. Yeah WWE is PG, but a bit of blood isn’t going to stop it from being PG. Lesnar’s MMA style of working is awesome, and as long as HHH doesn’t go all super on us and out fight Lesnar without weapons I don’t see how this could be bad… unless it goes on for too long.
Winner – Triple H. Don’t like that he’s probably gonna win, but he isn’t going to fully retire from in ring action right now. And he needs his win back from SS lol. The loss can maybe motivate Lesnar into murdering a bunch of people, leading up to whatever his next match is gonna be.
The Shield Vs The Big Show, Sheamus & Randy Orton
Totally hyped for this one. Shield have yet to let me down. Sheamus is great, Show is great, Orton will hopefully be motivated with it being WM and all so he too should be great in this match. Should be a hell of a chaotic tag match with great team work from The Shield, then go into a big finish with Show no doubt being all giant-y and fucking shit up before they do whatever finish they plan to do.
Winners – The Shield. I still don’t think it’s time for them to lose, at least not as a group. Maybe after WM start slowly putting them in singles action, with some losses here and there, put always put over the fact that together they are unbeaten, and perhaps unbeatable. Drag it out for a while, then when a team DO finally beat them, it’ll be a big fucking deal. Getting a big win at WM will do wonders for them (more so than already), while it’ll do fuck all for Show/Sheamus/Orton. Heels gotta win on the big stage too.
Alberto Del Rio (c) Vs Jack Swagger
Winner – Del Rio. Swagger getting the belt after all the build up and shit would be kinda weird (then again HHH retained the title against Booker despite the build being kinda racist lol). Guess it doesn’t matter too much, Dolph is either cashing in tonight or very soon.
The Rock (c) Vs John Cena
Yawn. Potential heel turn but probably not.
Winner – John Cena. Gets his redemption. Puts the belt on someone who will actually show up and promote his matches and be seen with the title belt.
The Undertaker Vs CM Punk
What a shite build. Ok, Paul Bearer died. I still don’t see WHY they needed to focus the build on that. Match has potential though. Just depends what kind of shape Taker is in. Hard to tell when he is either just throwing a few punches or getting attacked with the urn. Should only go maybe 15 minutes, it doesn’t have that “epic” scale to it like the HBK and HHH matches where going 30 minutes suited them. Keep it relatively short, work a nice pace and just do what they can. Not expecting a classic, but hard for me to believe it will be bad in any way.
Match 1 – Daniel Bryan Vs Sheamus – I was looking forward to this match. Out of the £15 I spend to watch WM live, £5 of it went on this match. What a waste of fucking money. So the bell rings, and Bryan wants AJ to give him a good luck kiss before they officially get into it. They kiss, and Bryan turns around into a kick to the face and is pinned, losing the WHC. What a load of fucking bullshit. I said when I reviewed this match last year that this MIGHT very well lead to something good, with Bryan’s character developing even more than it already has in the last few months. It might lead to somewhere truly great, and that’s, well, great. But that’s no excuse for doing this at WRESTLEMANIA. Do it on SD. Do it at a “B” PPV like Extreme Rules. But don’t do it at WRESTLEMANIA. Of course it DID lead to something great at the time for Bryan, and the WM rematch was TREMENDOUS, but still, DON’T DO THIS SHIT AT WRESTLEFUCKINGMANIA. Unless it involves Chavo Guerrero Jr. Then job him out in as little time as you like. DUD.
Match 2 – Kane Vs Randy Orton – Kane shook Orton’s hand last year so now they need to have a match at WM. Totally understandable… I was actually surprised by this match; it didn’t suck. Kane since his return really hasn’t looked that good, but here at WM he looked better than he has in a while. Orton kept trying to go full speed ahead but Kane would absorb everything thrown at him and then nail Randy with one big powerful looking move, allowing him to wear down the Viper and control the match. This is WrestleMania though, and Orton just keeps coming back again and again, forcing Kane to take bigger chances such as attempting the clothesline from the top rope which doesn’t go as well as he’d hoped. Neither does the chokeslam, with Randy being able to kick out! So if the chokeslam don’t work, what do you do? Super chokeslam! Was actually expecting Orton to reverse this into an RKO ala WM 21, but damn, Kane actually hit it AND got the 3 count! I legit thought Kane stood no chance of winning a WrestleMania match against a guy like Orton, but he did it. Which I guess means a re-match at Extreme Rules. Not fussed about this “feud” continuing, but it keeps Orton out of the title picture for a little while longer and with a stipulation they could have another good match. All in all, solid stuff here. Kane actually looked good, Orton in a loss still looked good as it took a super chokeslam to beat him AND he never hit the RKO so we don’t know for sure if Kane would have been able to kickout of it had he landed it. ***.
Match 3 – Cody Rhodes Vs The Big Show – One of the few matches on this show with a decent build up, and honestly Cody was the one carrying the feud with his promos and the video packages of Show’s embarrassing WM moments lol. This one goes exactly as I thought it would; Show starts dominant, Cody finds an opening for a little while, then Show mauls Cody and wins. Best part of this match was Show spearing Cody in the balls. Luckily this isn’t too long (though they might as well have had this go as long as the WHC match with Show just knocking out Cody, so the WHC match could have actually been a match). It’s not BAD, but its short and there isn’t much to it so I can’t call it good either. Just kinda there, not annoying me, but entertaining me a little. *.
Match 4 – Kelly Kelly & Maria Menounos Vs Beth Phoenix & Eve – NO.
Match 5 – The Undertaker Vs Triple H – Fuck. Yes. This is where another £5 went lol. Awesome that JR got to call the match, and they actually didn’t ruin it by playing up on all the shit between him and Cole. In fact, Cole was toned down a TON all night, which was awesome. He’s decent when he isn’t being a retard. The build up to this one hasn’t been epic, but I have enjoyed it more than any other WM match build this year. The whole “uncertainty” angle with Undertaker was a great way to set up the re-match imo. I remember listening to a radio show with JR, and the host summed up this angle in a great way. It’s just like Rocky II. Undertaker is Apollo Creed, and he wants the rematch because, and I quote “I won but I didn’t BEAT him”. And that’s just perfect for this. Undertaker got the win last year, but he was unable to leave the ring on his own and wasn’t able to return until a year later. So he wants another shot at HHH to prove that he CAN beat The Game and not JUST win the match. Undertaker’s coat looks epic btw. And his new hair cut reveal isn’t nearly as bad as I was thinking. I was expecting him to be completely bald and clean shaven on top of his head, but its grown back a little and he even has a slight Mohawk going that actually adds to his new look. The cell lowers to the sound of Metallica, and I have to wonder what shitty generic rock music they’ll replace it with when they release the show on DVD/Bluray. Seriously, why bother getting music like that for JUST the one night and not including it on the DVD/Bluray releases? They’ve done it before in the part, but now they replace anything they don’t already own the rights to. Last year, Triple H ran straight into The Undertaker to start the match and would be the one to control the pace and the match for the most part. This year, Undertaker has something to prove to himself and to HHH, so HE starts the match on fire and takes the fight right to HHH, showing him that the beating he took last year isn’t going to happen again; at least, not to HIM. I’ve been reading Mick Foley’s first book as of late, and there is a chapter where he talks a little about the best way to bust someone open “the hard way”. It involves targeting the spot just above the eyebrow… and about 3 minutes into this match I noticed that Undertaker starts targeting that exact spot with a couple of right hands and a few headbutts! Blood might be a big no-no in WWE these days, but hey, if someone is “accidentally” busted open, they can’t be punished, right? Besides, who the FUCK is going to come down to the ring and stop a Hell in a Cell match between HHH and THE UNDERTAKER? Nobody with a brain. The match slows down a little for a while now unfortunately. The match is inside the cell so I guess they figure they should do SOMETHING with it, and that ends up as nothing more than throwing each other into the side of it a couple of times. There really was no need to put this contest inside HIAC. I think they did it just to say that HHH and Undertaker finally had a HIAC match. Things pick up again when HHH tries to get himself back into the match with a quick DDT. He attempts a Pedigree on the steel steps that Undertaker brought in the ring, but a back body drop puts a stop to that. A nice little callback spot I guess you could say from their previous match, except last year it was a table HHH got back dropped. Another callback spot from last year with HHH hitting a brutal AA Spinebuster, except its the steel steps once again standing in for the table and damn does it look and sound a hell of a lot worse than last year! A desperate Undertaker sees an opportunity to use Hells Gate, but HHH has it scouted and is able to power Undertaker up and set him crashing to the mat! Undertaker’s back has taken some punishment now, so it’s time for the cerebral assassin to do what he does best; go to work on an injured body part. Time for the HBK factor to get involved in the match, with HHH brutalising The Undertaker with a steel chair, causing Shawn to show some concern for the man who ended his career. Triple H tells Shawn to end it, to ring the bell and stop the suffering of one of the biggest legends, or else HE’LL end it, and it won’t be as quick and painless as ringing a bell. Undertaker makes damn sure to tell Shawn not to end it, which just infuriates HHH to the point where he brings out his trusty Sledgehammer to finish the job. HBK gets involved again, actually preventing HHH from smashing the sledgehammer down on the head of the Dead Man. Instead he looks like he’s going to ring the bell, a way he sees best to prevent HHH from not just beating HHH, but ENDING him. But its WrestleMania, and The Undertaker isn’t going to let a match end like this any time, never mind HIS show. And if Shawn is considering ringing the bell, Undertaker believes he needs to take out Shawn, and he locks in the Hells Gate! With Shawn gone, HHH is next to feel the pain of Hells Gate, and just like the end of last year’s match, HHH does his best to use the sledgehammer but he passes out from the pain! This one is OVER! Except… HBK is still out! Another referee runs down as Undertaker levels HHH with a Chokeslam, and we get probably the biggest near fall a Chokeslam has gotten in quite some time, as HHH was still out from the Hells Gate and might not have been able to kick out. The referee suffers for only making a 2 count, and then… SWEET CHIN MUSIC! SWEET CHIN MUSIC! HBK kicks Undertaker’s teeth down his throat, and sends him straight into a Pedrigee! Its over! Its over! NO!!! Undertaker WILL NOT DIE! Triple H goes back to the trusty Sledgehammer, but Undertaker sits up and nearly scares HHH into submission! It’s almost like Undertaker is remembering everything that happened to him last year, and its firing him up more than ever before! Tombstone! HBK makes the count… only 2! Shawn is GREAT here as he sits in the corner looking like an emotional wreck, knowing he almost screwed Undertaker out of his streak, and almost counted out his best friend in this “end of an era” match. We get a great battle from both men as they throw big lefts and rights at each other to the “yey!” and “boo!” of the crowd, with them starting off on their knees before staggering up and continuing it on their feet. PEDIGREE! Another 2 count, and Shawn looks like he just wants this one to end so nobody has to get hurt any more. With both men hurting badly, they begin to crawl to separate weapons. Undertaker goes for a chair, and HHH for his sledgehammer. A great visual as Undertaker has the chair in his hand, and stands on the sledgehammer before HHH can pick it up. All the chair shots Undertaker received earlier are now fresh in his mind, and similar to the HIAC match with Edge back in 2008, Undertaker looks now to give everything back to his opponent and then some. Chairshots the head have been outlawed in WWE, but the way these two have been swinging the chair for just back shots more than makes up for it. These are hard and every bit as brutal as a chair shot to the head would be. The match now really is a reverse of last year; Undertaker has destroyed HHH with chair shot after chair shot and is screaming at HHH to stay down, but like Undertaker last year, HHH refuses to, even though he has almost nothing left. Another tremendous visual moment as HHH charges at Undertaker one last time with the sledgehammer, only for Undertaker to put a stop to it and shake his head. HHH, like his best friend HBK 2 years earlier, is defiant to the end and essentially forces Undertaker to finish him because there really is no other way. Another Tombstone, and this one is over. The Undertaker is able to put his year of uncertainty behind him as he not only won, but he BEAT Triple H. The stuff that follows the match is really fucking great too. We have Undertaker and Shawn hugging, as Undertaker breaks away from his “Dead Man” character as much as possible without being Mark Calaway. And it was great to see Undertaker and HBK help HHH up and WALK him up the ramp to the back. Almost like Undertaker didn’t want HHH to go through what he went through last year. It might not have been on his own, but dammit, HHH WALKED out of WrestleMania. As JR put it, “That ladies and gentlemen, is respect”. This really was an end of an era, because it’s going to be a long damn time before anything like this is going to be able to take place in WWE. This was incredible. Better than last year. If it wasn’t for the part near the beginning of the match slowing things down and not really going anywhere, I’d throw the full ***** at it. This is one hell of a way to finish the incredible story arc that in a way began at WrestleMania 24 with HBK ending the career of Ric Flair. It really doesn’t get any better than this. ****3/4.
Match 6 – Team Johnny: David Otunga, Dolph Ziggler, Jack Swagger, Drew McIntyre, Mark Henry & The Miz Vs Team Teddy: Santino Marella, Kofi Kongston, R-Truth, The Great Khali, Booker T & Zack Ryder – NO.
Match 7 – CM Punk Vs Chris Jericho – And here is where my last £5 went. Yep, I didn’t pay to see Cena/Rock. I’ll talk more about that when I get to it though. Before the match, Punk is backstage and runs into Johnny, who adds the stipulation that if Punk loses his cool and gets DQ’d, he also loses the WWE Title. Punk does his best to look… pissed off? I dunno. His facial expressions as of late have been fucking horrible lol, making me want to laugh during this feud more than anything. Jericho added to that with his hilarious dick headed comments about Punk’s family. Wrestling needs more dick head heels btw. Been watching a bunch of ROH stuff from Joe and Danielson and KENTA in 06 when Bryan was a heel and the other 2 were… I dunno, tweeners maybe, and all 3 just act like complete DICKS to each other and it makes their matches, be it singles, tag or triple thread, so much fucking fun. So yeah. More dick heads in wrestling please! Austin Aries in TNA is one of the best things going right now because of the way he acts tbh. The match begins with some nice little mat work, with both men wanting to prove that they are the best in the world. But Punk has more on his mind; he wants to beat the hell out of Jericho as well. Jericho sees this, and goes to work. The new stipulation allows Punk and Jericho to add a little something more to their match here. Jericho gets to be a DICK and it’s just great to watch. With the title now being able to change hands on a DQ, Jericho decides he’s going to make Punk so mad he’ll get himself DQ’d and literally hand the belt to Chris. It starts off with a couple of slaps, but that doesn’t seem to be getting the job done. So Jericho brings up Punk’s Dad, but again Punk is able to cool himself off and not fully lose control. Time to bring out the Sister card, and again Punk goes crazy but pulls himself together before he does something he’ll regret. Jericho literally BEGS Punk to hit him in the head with a chair, and it’s just awesome. He’s so fucking happy as he does it too. Only Funk and Foley come to mind when I think about people smiling and begging to be hit with a chair lol. When it becomes obvious Punk isn’t going to get himself DQ’d, Jericho has to out-wrestle Punk in order to win, and luckily for him all the things he has been saying has caused Punk to lose focus. Love the transition spot into Jericho’s “wrestling” part of the match. The suplex from the ring to the outside was a hell of a manly bump. We get some really nice back work from Chris, and the spot where Jericho throws Punk off the ropes is great due to the slow motion replay and both Cole and Lawler just going “oh MAN” at the same time while watching it. Looked sick in slow motion. Punk makes his comeback and the match becomes more of a back and forth even contest which fits in nicely with the story of both men claiming to be the best in the world. Only real complaint I have here is how Punk shrugs off the back work completely. Didn’t expect him to sell his back like death for the rest of the match, especially since Jericho doesn’t go back to it aside from the Walls of Jericho, but damn, one minute Punk is having his back worked over, and the next he’s fighting back and acting like nothing happened at all lol. Anyone else for a moment thought that Jericho was going to hit the Styles Clash when he countered a Hurricanrana into a Walls of Jericho? Just me? Ah well lol. I love how they transition seamlessly from the back and forth stuff into a finishing stretch, and do it without completely killing the concept of finishers too. I think Punk kicks out of a Codebreaker ONCE, and only because he had time to rest and recover before Jericho made the cover, and in a big match at WM that’s kinda to be expected, and in this match it really works into the story of both men being the best in the world and having what it takes to kick out of such things. They really work their submissions beautifully in the match too. Jericho finding a way out of the Anaconda Vice by using his knees is great, and then Punk finding a way to counter the counter which results in Jericho having to tap is even better. Totally loved this match. Great storytelling, starting out with Jericho trying to get Punk to lose his temper and get DQ’d, then moving onto both men just trying to prove they are the best in the world. Prefer Undertaker/HHH to it, but I’ve come to expect that I’ll like “big” Undertaker matches more than most people, and I can certainly see a lot of people thinking this was the best match of the night and other than my personal preference for Undertaker/HHH I’d find it hard to come up with much of a reason to disagree. Blew my expectations away, which were a little low as I didn’t want to be disappointed and I honestly doubted both men a little in their ability to have a truly great match with each other. Luckily they proved me wrong! ****1/2.
Match 8 – John Cena Vs The Rock – Urgh. It always sucks a little when they most hyped up match for WrestleMania doesn’t interest you in the slightest. I don’t like The Rock. Never have. I’m not one of those people who bitches because he left for Hollywood. I like that he left for Hollywood because it meant he wasn’t on my wrestling show any more. I don’t care much for Cena. I’m not one of those people who thinks he can’t wrestle in the slightest or have good matches, I just don’t enjoy his character. Even as the rapper. I’ve just never connected with Cena, but I’ve always at least been able to enjoy his matches when they have been good, and yeah, he’s got a bunch of them. Same can be said for The Rock, I like a bunch of his matches too. Unfortunately I just can’t find any motivation to give a shit about this match. I don’t like either guy, I don’t like their characters, and the build up to this one has been atrocious. Absolutely atrocious. They had an ENITRE YEAR to build this one up, and it consisted of the same old shit from both men over and over again. Oh, The Rock left and I’m always here. Well, Cena is a fruity pebble and a *insert takeaway food here* bitch. A year of THAT. It wasn’t good, clever or funny the first time they did it. Why would it be any of that the next billion times they said it? I hear people say that feuds these days are too short and in the good old days they could last a year blah blah blah. Well in this day and age it’s impossible to keep things going for a long time because a) there is far more programming than there was 20 years ago, and b) creative struggle to come up with an interesting angle that last longer than a fucking week. And that’s all this one was; a week’s worth of ideas on repeat for a fucking year. Nice to see that both guys get extremely long and shitty entrances from so called “singers” that I’ve never heard of and for good reason because they suck, while the WHC match got 18 seconds. Once again, FUCK YOU, ROCK. Your shitty boring pointless promo last year at WM prevented Bryan/Sheamus from happening on the show, and this year your shitty boring pointless entrance took away all but 18 seconds from Bryan/Sheamus. And fuck you too, Cena. And Vince McMahon. Now I have that out of my system, time to watch the match. Urgh. Collar and Elbow tie ups to start things off, with Cena powering Rock across the ring the first time, kinda like he was saying “LOL @ Teh Moviez Star”. Then Rock powers Cena across the ring with the second one as if to say “I may have been to Hollywood, but I’m as much of a wrestler as you as, so don’t take me lightly, bitch”. Then Rock busts out some ZOMGWRESTLING moves that shocks Cena and almost catches him off guard so much he almost gets pinned! Cena is getting frustrated, but takes a time out and this allows him to regain his composure and when he gets back into the ring, he is able to take control of the match by targeting Rock’s ribs and utilises the bear hug. Unfortunately these bear hug spots are as dull as shit and damn, I know wrestling is “fake” but come on, if you are going to talk to each other in holds, try and do it quietly lol. Takes away from the match a little, and believe me, I’m not into the match that much to begin with . After a while they take turns at hitting finishers, which breaks up the dull fest of bear hugs nicely, and then Cena goes back to controlling Rocky followed by a Rock control segment which involves his terrible attempt at a Sharpshooter. Speaking of shitty attempts at submission holds… STFU! More god awful, dull and shitty submission spots from Cena. This match is way too long. We go into the finishing stretch now, and its finishers for the most part, which I’m fine with because it’s a “huge” match and nobody is going to buy either of these being beaten by just ONE finisher. Rock goes to the ropes at one point, and in a nice throwback to his early days, lands a crossbody! But Cena rolls throw and hits the FU (or AA, whatever)! Legit thought this was it, but Rock kicked out and then I remembered something; movie stars always win! And yeah, Rock wins. Rock Bottom while Cena mocks Rock by attempting the People’s Elbow. So it’s finally over. It went on WAY too long, and if it wasn’t for the crowd I probably would have shot myself half way through. Rock/Hogan not only had a better atmosphere than this in all honestly, but the actual MATCH was better too imo. Kane/Orton was better as far as a MATCH goes. Crowd and Atmosphere were obviously better than anything Kane/Orton had, but that’s the ONLY thing this match had over it. **1/4.
Urgh, Rock as the host aka wastes a ton of time saying absolutely NOTHING that benefits absolutely NOBODY and as a result a match I PAID TO SEE gets cancelled from the show. Yey thanks WWE!
Match 1 – Edge Vs Alberto Del Rio – Edge’s final match! Good that he was able to leave before he got to the point where he was fucked… just a shame it didn’t happen about 2 years sooner when he went downhill and started sucking on a regular basis. Christian returned from injury at the EC PPV, and what does he get to do at WM? Stand on the outside. Del Rio quickly goes after the injured arm, which is of course a smart move. The only real potential I saw for this match was the arm work and Edge’s selling of it and fighting to come back, so it made me a little happy to see that neither man was retarded enough to ignore it (hey, it has been done before lol…). With Del Rio working the arm, Edge really has to use his veteran instincts to create openings for himself, which we see fairly early on when he moves out of Del Rio’s way, and Rio goes flying through the ropes to the outside. Then the importance of leaving WM with the WHC is made perfectly clear when Edge lands a top rope dive to the floor in an attempt to keep his opponent down. And with Edge creating all these openings due to being the veteran, Del Rio does equally as well by going back to the injured arm to control the match whenever Edge gets some offence in. Rather loved the spot with Del Rio hitting that big kick on Edge, going for the cover, only for Edge to get his foot on the rope and Rodriguez running past to take it off before the ref sees him. Great to see someone on the outside actually doing more than just standing around these days. When Brodus smashed Edge’s shoulder into the ring post and Del Rio went for the Cross Arm Breaker, I thought it was over, but alas, it was not to be. And a few moments later… Del Rio gets hit with a running hug and for some reason Edge actually retains the belt. Bah. Match had a lot going for it, I gotta admit, but outside of a couple of spots, there was nothing that we wouldn’t see from lower card guys in a Superstars match. It was just totally underwhelming for a WM match, and even more so for a WHC match. It wasn’t until the very end when things seemed that important and they went into a higher gear either. A little better than I expected tbh, but as I predicted, Christian/Del Rio on SD a couple of weeks back was WAY better than this. Sucks balls that Edge is still champ too. Guy’s boring and stale beyond belief. **1/2.
Match 2 – Cody Rhodes Vs Rey Mysterio – Totally looking forward to this match! Great build up, and both men talented enough to give us something great. Why does Rey always have to look like a retard at WM? After the beatdowns the last couple of weeks, Rey wastes no time going after Cody, and tries to take that protective mask off too. Not to embarrass Cody, but to remove the potential weapon. Cool to see someone in a feud with Rey NOT caring about the mask or taking it off. This time its CODY’S mask that is the focal point over Rey’s mask, and its Rey’s KNEE BRACE that is the target of his opponent. Tremendous sequence from Cody where he spins Rey around in the ropes, headbutts him with the mask, then does that leaping kick (I’m sure it has a name, but I forget these things) to Rey’s head. Makes a great sound and looks amazing. Again Rhodes looks awesome when he counters some Rey Rey offence and utilises some BOB HOLLY offence to try and put him away. Since Rey and the knee brace injured Rhode’s face months back, Cody does a wonderful job of trying to get the knee brace off, and when Rey keeps fighting back so he can’t do it, goes after the face of Rey to gain some revenge. Like Del Rio going back to the arm of Edge in the previous match, Cody keeps using the protective mask to headbutt Rey whenever Rey might be making a comeback. All in all just some great work from Cody. After some great offence by Cody, he finally has Rey down and almost out, enough to take off that knee brace and hopefully avoid getting injured again. But once this happens, Mysterio is pissed and makes sure to take the mask off of Cody and land a 619! Cody is resilient though, so Rey goes one step further for retribution, and puts on the Cody mask! A few headbutts with it and Cody looks to be out, but nope, he still fights back! So how does Cody react to having his face attacked with his own protective mask? He grabs the knee brace that he took off of Rey, and smashes him in the face! One finisher later, and Cody picks up the big win! Fucking great how the knee brace came into the finish, and actually HELPED Cody, after ruining his life for so many months prior to WM. Shocked to see Cody get the win, but extremely pleased. Great match, awesome storytelling, and perfect finish. ****.
Match 3 – The Corre Vs The Big Show, Kane, Santino Marella & Kofi Kingston – NO.
Match 4 – CM Punk Vs Randy Orton – This one has potential to be good, but based on Orton’s terrible babyface match formula, it also has the potential to suck more balls than The Rock. So we have another match where the story can revolve around a particular thing; first it was Edge’s arm, then we had Rey’s head and knee brace along with Cody’s mask, and now Orton’s leg. It’s all simple stuff, but done right can really make a match. Edge/Del Rio didn’t go beyond the basics, Rey/Cody worked all aspects in their match extremely well, and now we just have to see how Punk and Orton work with the leg. Punk goes after the leg the moment the bell rings, so I guess we can expect the leg to be the main focus, which is exactly what it should be. Punk’s offence is tremendous, and Orton shows that he can sell really well too. I know he can, but some people out there seriously don’t think Orton can do anything except for an RKO. RKO countered into a kick to the face by Punk was epic. In fact, Punk has some tremendous kicks throughout the match, especially the sequence of kicks that ends with a sweep to knock Orton down into the Anaconda Vice. Despite some good selling by Orton, Punk’s offence seems to be really up and down after a while. We get bursts of greatness from him, then periods of “meh” offence where it looks like he’s just wasting time. Maybe that’s not the best way to describe it, but I’m struggling to really think of what it is I’m trying to say lol. Orton failing the hit the Punt because of his leg, but leaping up for an RKO was pretty fantastic. I would have preferred that to have landed and be the finish rather than Punk getting away and then jumping into another RKO. Some good stuff here, but some of it seemed a little dull to me and I wasn’t a fan of the finish. Like I said, should have ended with the attempted one rather than the “catch off the ropes” one. Disappointed with this one, but at the same time it wasn’t as horrible as it could have been either. **1/2.
Match 5 – Jerry Lawler Vs Michael Cole – NO.
Match 6 – The Undertaker Vs Triple H – Without a doubt the BIGGEST match on the show… and really the ONLY big match on the show. Despite my seeming man love for The Undertaker, I wasn’t too interested in this one. Based on their previous matches over the years I had a lot of reason to doubt it. And watching it live didn’t do much for me. However, after sitting through 20 minutes of Lawler/Cole and numerous other disappointments, and the fact it was around half 2 in the morning by now, I was tired and a little bored and probably didn’t pay as much attention to it. Hopefully this re-watch will do some good. I mean, back at WM 25 I wasn’t THAT impressed with HBK/Undertaker when I saw it live. Adored it when I reviewed it the next day. “For Whom The Bell Tolls” plays and out comes HHH for a rather unspectacular WM entrance. Nobody this year really had an entrance worth mentioning, including Undertaker right afterwards. Though I always enjoy Undertaker’s entrance no matter what lol. Oh, and his new coat was awesome too. Maybe one of these days I’ll look into getting a coat like that, always really wanted one. No time wasted here as HHH takes the fight right to The Undertaker with those big lefts and rights. No need to feel his opponent out; he’s been in the ring before, plus he just wants to end the Streak at any cost, so going for the big bombs right away makes sense. Undertaker just kinda shrugs him off though, launching him out of the ring. HHH throws more bombs at Undertaker on the outside, but Undertaker again shrugs him aside and sends him into the steel steps. Undertaker wants to control this match and go at HIS pace, regardless of what HHH wants to do. So HHH charges at The Undertaker and sends him crashing through the tool box, which leads to a great visual of Undertaker getting up almost DBZ style when someone is knocked into a mountain or something and they just stand back up and let the rocks fly off them lol. He stares at HHH almost as if to say “fine, we’ll do it YOUR way”. HHH is really determined to take out Undertaker here, and as a result Undertaker takes a bump into the barricade that someone of his age and condition (hip surgery a year or so ago I think) really shouldn’t be taking. But its WM and he’ll do everything he can. The fight goes onto the announcers table, and HHH takes a huge bump with a back body drop off the table to the floor, and perhaps legit injures his left arm which he favours for the rest of the match, but not in a way that prevents him from doing anything if you get me. Knowing that he is truly in for the fight of a lifetime, Undertaker knows he has to really bust out everything in his arsenal. After WM 25 when he landed on his head, I didn’t think we would see it again, especially since he didn’t do it at WM 26 and his condition has got to be worse a year later… but dammit, Undertaker continues to prove that he is still the best in the world when he wants to be, and he dives over that top rope as effortlessly as he did a decade ago when he was in way better shape. The big bumps keep coming, and Undertaker again puts his body in more risk than he should when he attempts to put HHH through a table but ends up taking a AA Spinebuster through it instead! DAMN! Watching live, and feeling how I did (bored, disappointed and tired due to the time and rest of the show so far lol), I just saw this as one giant finishing stretch from the get go with no psychology or anything. Watching it again in a much better mood, I can see it for what it really is; awesome. The match is all about HHH wanting to end the streak or die trying, and Undertaker wanting to prove to HHH that is ISN’T his time to go yet. So HHH does what he does best; be a ruthless cunt who will destroy his opponent at any cost, while Undertaker continues to fight back and kick out of anything The Game throws at him. If they had started slow, locking up and “wrestling” at the beginning, it really would have been dumb given the context of the feud, so I for one am glad that they went all out from the start. Helps that they are executing everything so well too. At some point Undertaker gets a Chokeslam in, but nobody in their right mind believes that its over lol. A Pedigree shows up too, and it too isn’t that great as a false finish, just because of what Undertaker and HBK did the last 2 years. The Last Ride spot, while again not the best false finish, was still cool because it was a great throwback to WM 17, as Undertaker defeated HHH that way 10 years ago at this very event. Undertaker getting frustrated was great to see. His character as the last outlaw might not look too different on the surface, but he really is been shown as more “human” than usual, and given the feud with Undertaker not accepting HHH’s statement that he’s done, getting frustrated like this at not being able to put HHH away really adds to the story of the match. If a Last Ride, and then a TOMBSTONE can’t put HHH away… can Undertaker do it? Can he hold on to his streak? DRAMA~! The second Pedigree is a way better false finish than the first. Like the Tombstone, it’s one of THE most protected finishers in the entire industry really (though other companies tend to use the Tombstone every now and then and NOT finish a match with it…). So seeing 2 of them not work, and then a THIRD in a very short period of time after the second one also not work was just amazing. I always go into these matches expecting Undertaker to win, but every so often a certain spot in certain matches over the last few years really makes me think that the Streak might end this time. That third Pedigree was one of those moments along with the last Superkick in WM 26 before Undertaker eventually won. MOAR Throwbacks in the match (which I LOVE btw) with HHH using the steel chair similar to how Austin used it on The Rock at WM 17 when Rocky kept kicking out of the Stunner, and then the “stay down” which was a throwback to WM 26 when Undertaker told HHH’s best friend HBK to stay down. Makes the match that much better that Undertaker actually finished HBK off after telling him to stay down and he didn’t, so with HHH saying it maybe he would actually get the win! Undertaker’s selling in this match NEEDS to be talked about too. The man really is one of the better sellers IN THE WORLD today, and has been for a number of years, even with the Dead Man gimmick. He can make things believable while still being able to be the “other worldly” character. Here he comes across as more human, as I mentioned earlier, and his selling is just impeccable. You really get the feeling that he’s at death’s door and the next big move could end his streak, and his life (kayfabe of course). And then there is the Tombstone. From HHH. Good GOD. I’m struggling to decide which is better; Tombstone kick out by HBK at WM 25, or this one. The crowd has been pretty shitty most of the night, but picked up for this match, and when Undertaker kicked out of that Tombstone they went ballistic. Almost as if THEY, like me, believed that it was over. And then it wasn’t. And it was awesome. Just as Undertaker was getting frustrated with HHH kicking out of shit, HHH begins to get that same feeling, and resorts to bringing out the Sledgehammer. He drags Undertaker to the centre of the ring, and informs the Dead Man that “Its time”. And Undertaker sticks him in Hells Gate! What a struggle this is too, with HHH trying to hang on, trying to escape. At one point he grabs that Sledgehammer, and we know that just one shot from that and it could be it for The Undertaker… but HHH is fading fast, and the Sledgehammer drops. The hammer hits the mat, and then The Game taps out. I would have preferred for HHH to simply “pass out” to really put over the “die trying” mentality that he had going into the match, but it’s a minor complaint really. Damn. Definitely, DEFINITELY enjoyed this more on this re-watch. A LOT more. A fucking TON more. This is fantastic. Truly epic. The storytelling is off the charts, the action is incredible, and the finish (while not 100% perfect) is great. This was one hell of a battle, and the selling from both men, but especially The Undertaker, is out of this world. Hell, I’ve been reading all day from numerous sites that a LOT of people believed that Undertaker was legit hurt and out of it. I just have to wonder what’s next for Undertaker after the way he was taken to the back. ****3/4.
Match 7 – John Morrison, Trish Stratus & Snookie Vs LayCool & Dolph Ziggler – NO.
Match 8 – The Miz Vs John Cena – Miz gets a great video package… while Cena is made to look like some sort of messiah or something. The fuck? I guess “Cenation” will be a religion by the end of the year… I went into this match with low expectations… and they did nothing to exceed them. This is just bad. Dull. Best way to describe this one. Only thing I can say positive about it is… ummm.. the F-U kickout from The Miz. As far as the F-U goes, being a fucking shitty move and all, it was probably one of the best Cena has done in terms of impact, and Miz kicking out of it was a shock. The double countout thing was shit, but if ANYONE honestly expected WWE to end the main event of WM like this, then you must be a TNA fan. Rock comes out (because, you know, he hasn’t taken up much time on this show yet) and talks again… Raw GM says something. Rock ignores it and somehow gains the power to make matches because he’s the guest host of WM, and the match restarts. Rock Bottom to Cena. Miz wins. I am shocked at the outcome. Miz celebrates. Rock beats him up. WM ends with Rock celebrating. WAY TO RUIN WM FOR ME ROCK! Worst. WM Main Event. Ever. 1/4*.
Match 1 – R-Truth & John Morrison Vs The Big Show & The Miz – Unified tag titles on the line in the opener here. How the fuck did Miz go from opening WM to main eventing WM in a year? Guy deserves to be on the pre-show at best. Useless Jiz. Match is short, thankfully, but given the time it gets, it’s a surprisingly good and fun tag contest. I say surprising because everyone bar Show sucks. And Show is definitely the MVP of the match as well, which isn’t a surprise because like I said, everyone else involved in the match sucks lol. Not much else to say really. **.
Match 2 – Ted DiBiase Vs Cody Rhodes Vs Randy Orton – Oh god this looks so dull and generic on paper. Which is exactly how all 3 wrestlers look, and how I could describe their “characters” at the time. Hell none of them have really changed that much. Rhodes had a chance with the mask thing but then they gave him a moustache and assumed that was all he needed. This match is dull as shit. Not surprising though tbh. *.
Match 3 – Kofi Kingston Vs Jack Swagger Vs Christian Vs MVP Vs Shelton Benjamin Vs Drew McIntyre Vs Matt Hardy Vs Dolph Ziggler Vs Kane Vs Evan Bourne – Fuck me, how many bloody guy do they need to put in this match lol? Boy, this match was… there. No spots or moments that really stand out to me enough to mention. Swagger wins, after spending half an hour unhooking the briefcase (which obviously was edited from the DVD lol). And that’s that. Think this might be worse than WM 22′s MITB match. **.
Match 4 – Sheamus Vs Triple H – Huh, did Sheamus get less pale over the years? STRAPPING, BURLEY AND STRONG! That’s how Michael Cole describes Sheamus. TIE YOUR MOTHER DOWN, HERE COMES TRIPLE H. Uhhh, Striker, that was QUEEN. Triple H is the KING OF KINGS. I kinda get it, but yeah, not quite there lol. This is a good, solid match. It’s all about Sheamus wanting to make his mark on the WWE in his first year. He already “ended careers”, beat CENA for the WWE title, and now he wants to beat The Game on the grandest stage of them all. And he does a pretty awesome job of really beating the fuck out of him too. He’s HHH’s boy so obviously HHH is gonna make sure he looks good, but most importantly, despite getting a huge push so early in his career without really deserving it, Sheamus really holds up his own. And Sheamus would continue to improve over the next year or so and by 2012 would legitimately be one of the best workers in the company. Definitely a top 3 guy in the company that year based on great TV matches and PPV performances. In the end, HHH manages to get the win, but only just. Match felt like they had been through a small war by the end, and even though Sheamus lost he came out looking great. Did exactly what it was intended to do. Wasn’t great by any means, but definitely a GOOD contest at WM. ***.
Match 5 – CM Punk Vs Rey Mysterio – Oh look, Rey is dressed like a complete tit again. DRESS NORMAL AT WM YOU TWAT. Good job the guy is talented lol! Punk is in his SES phase at this time, and if Rey loses he must join them. Rey is fighting the odds right from the start, constantly getting distracted by Serina… Sarina… the bald chick and Luke Gallows (DOC), allowing Punk to control the match. Match isn’t that long here, but reminds me of Rey/Hardy from WM 19 in a way. They don’t get the length of match they deserved, but they manage to fit as much as possible into the match as they can without it becoming just a bunch of moves with each guy trying to fit stuff in for the sake of it. SES play a great part on the outside, constantly screwing up Rey’s comeback attempts, until it finally backfires on Punk and Mysterio gets the win. I never really understood the booking behind this whole feud though. They just kept throwing Punk under the bus, when surely it would have been FAR more interesting for them to have had Punk like… WIN at some point, and make Rey join the SES. Then you can play up on Mysterio having to follow Punk, deal with morals and shit, and then finally after a few months get a chance for redemption by once again facing Punk for his freedom. Instead Rey won, then Rey won, and Rey won, then Show destroyed the SES and shit went to hell. Ah well, we got some good matches out of it at least, and this was one of them. ***1/4.
Match 6 – Vince McMahon Vs Bret Hart – Oh sweet jebus no. If you’ve seen it you’ll understand. NO.
Match 7 – Chris Jericho Vs Edge – A year ago they formed a tag team and became tag champs, and were set to go on a big run with the belts. Then Edge got injured. Fast forward to the RR, Edge returns and wins! At the EC, Jericho wins the WHC and that sets up this match because Jericho mocked Edge for getting injured or something. The main build for this is Edge screaming SPEAR SPEAR SPEAR SPEAR SPEAR SPEAR SPEAR SPEAR SPEAR SPEAR SPEAR SPEAR for like 2 months. Yeah that didn’t get tiring. I WAS BEING SARCASTIC. Edge is the RATER R SOUP-R-STAR. LOL at Matt Striker. THEY ARE BOTH FROM CANADA SO THEY TRAINED TOGETHER AND TRAVELLED TOGETHER. Yeah I don’t think it quite works like that. Did Regal and Barrett train together? They’re both from England so I guess so! Gotta love the dead crowd here, only getting into the parts of the match where Jericho is doing something to hurt Edge. First 3/4 of this match is honestly pretty dull though, regardless of the crowd giving a shit or not. There was no reason for them to get into the match, nor me. Then Jericho counters a Spear with the Code Breaker and things pick up. Mainly because instead of pointless back and forth shit, Jericho actually gets to control the match. Back and forth stuff can be great, and can even make for a good match if that’s the main structure, but that didn’t fit this match at all. Was always gonna be about Jericho going after the recent injury of Edge, with Edge desperately trying to hold on and somehow beat Jericho to make his return mean something. Just a shame they took so long to get into all that. Then as things are picking up, Jericho decks Edge with the title belt, Edge kicks out, another Code Breaker and this one is over. Damn. Really liked this on last watch. Hell, so far this entire event is not living up to my memory of it. Used to consider it a top 3 ‘Mania. Not even with the main event with this make it even close to that. Shame. **.
Match 8 – Michelle McCool, Vickie Guerrero, Alicia Fox, Layla & Maryse Vs Beth Phoenix, Kelly Kelly, Mickie James, Gail Kim & Eve Torres – NO.
Match 9 – John Cena Vs Batista – WWE Title match! Focus of the match is on Cena’s neck, as the last time these two faced (SummerSlam 08), Cena got his neck injured and actually had to take TIME OFF. Shocking I know. Batista does a great job attacking the neck, and at one point hits a real sick looking DDT that honestly looked a little botched, not in the sense that it didn’t look good, but that it looked like Cena really did get fucked up from it lol. Despite Batista’s good work though, Cena’s superman shit keeps screwing the match up a little. For example, Batista counters the 5 Knuckle Shuffle with a Spinebuster, and seconds later Cena has Batista locked in the STFU like nothing happened to him. Kinda like HHH/Batista from Backlash 05, where HHH did some fucking awesome back work to Batista, then Batista completely murdered the match by ignoring it completely for the finish. Well ok, nowhere near as bad here as Cena still sells the neck in between all his little superman comebacks, but still, I don’t like him shrugging it off for a few minutes while he does something then decides to go back to selling when it suits him. MASSIVE Batista Bomb, which should have ended the match, but Cena is winning so he had to kick out, and Batista’s shock face makes up for it all anyway lol. Cena ruins shit again though by no selling the Batista Bomb to not only counter another one, but then counter the counter to his counter (you following this?) with a stupid strength spot leading into another F-U (Or AA by this point). Thank FUCK Batista kicked out of it because it looked retarded. OH MY GOD CENA STOP IT! He comes off the ropes, gets caught in a massive Spinebuster, and again completely fucking ignores it, counters a Batista Bomb attempt, locks in th STFU and wins. FUCK YOU. Batista brought all sorts of awesomeness to this match and Cena cancelled it out. I’m far from a Cena hater when it comes to his ring work, but matches like this make me at least understand why people don’t like him. He completely fucked up everything Batista was doing. Sell? Nah, SUPERMAN COMEBACK! Urgh. Hard to rate this one. Cena was terrible and Batista was awesome. **3/4.
Match 10 – The Undertaker Vs Shawn Michaels – Fuck YES. When it was getting towards the end of the show, and only this match and the WWE Title match were left, I assumed the title match would end the show. And then the Title match happened first. People can complain all they want about the fact that the title should have main evented the show, but fuck it. They’ve done it before, and the matches they had in place of a title match at the main event were fucking shit (HHH/Jericho, HHH/Orton etc). Last year this match didn’t main event, and the matches that had to follow it were fucked. The crowd were dead after cheering so much, and everything fell flat. And with the rematch being billed as an even bigger match, with HBK’s career on the line, it was obvious that nothing would be able to follow it again, so WWE made the right choice this year. Oh, and to anyone thinking that the “credibility” of the titles might be affected by not main eventing WM… what credibility? Having the belts change hands every month near enough doesn’t make the belts credible to start with. Besides, it’s all fake . It’s funny how last year when I watched HBK/Undertaker live, I didn’t think it was as great as I do now. It was only when I watched it again that I loved it even more. But with this match, watching it live I was marking out like a little kid, and I quickly threw ***** at it. Now I just have to see if that rating will stick on this watch. The marking out began for me when Undertaker made his entrance with his fancy new coat. It just looks… cool lol. I like to interpret him wearing it and having the hood on as him looking like the Grim Reaper or something, and he is here to inform Shawn Michaels that his career is over. Undertaker probably just wore it because it looked cool, but hey, I can turn almost anything Undertaker does into a logical positive . Both men stare each other down before the match starts, and Shawn gives Undertaker the cut throat sign, symbolising that he intends to end the Streak. Undertaker didn’t like that, so he charges out of the corner, and we get a similar start to their match last year, only at a MUCH quicker pace. After last year, both men know exactly what to expect from the other, so they are clearly trying to finish this thing as soon as possible before they potentially make a mistake. Speaking of mistakes… Old School from The Undertaker, and when he lands, his knee gives out. Either Undertaker really did hurt his knee (and it wouldn’t surprise me, his knees are fucked), or he did the best job at selling an injury since Christian in his ECW match with Swagger last year (thank you Viva for that one lol). Shawn takes advantage with a kick, but Undertaker is still too strong and remains in control for now. But then Shawn fakes a Superkick, and when Undertaker flinches (nice throw back to last year’s match), his knee again buckles under him. Shawn sees this and gets a smirk. Yeah, he already knew that Undertaker hurt his knee, but in the back of his mind he could have been thinking that Undertaker was taking a page out of HBK’s book by faking an injury (again, a nice throw back to last year’s match where Shawn tried it). But when Undertaker was still seemingly in pain, Shawn realised that the Dead Man was indeed hurt. And this is where I was able to suspend my belief and just watch the match as nothing more than a fan, a mark, an idiot (or moron, or just plain stupid, I forget which word was mentioned earlier in reference to someone being able to suspend their belief during this match) whatever the hell you want to call me… and I couldn’t decide who was going to win. Shawn was fighting for his career, and Undertaker was hurt. Similar to last year with Undertaker’s dive over the ropes, only this time Shawn, like I just mentioned, is fight for his entire career. He has to be more determined than ever before. As hurt as The Undertaker is, and despite how it turned out last year, the Dead Man STILL attempts to dive over the ropes, but Shawn clips the knee and goes right back to work on it. This is WrestleMania though, and no matter how hurt Undertaker is, he will never stop fighting. Shawn hits the flying forearm, kips up, and walks right into a Chokeslam! Undertaker knows that Shawn always likes to kip up following that move, so he scouted it and capitalised on it. Shawn comes back, takes Undertaker to the outside, but Undertaker continues to battle through the pain, and he channels WrestleMania 8 against Jake Roberts, and Tombstone’s Shawn on the floor!!! Undertaker rolls Shawn in the ring, and goes for a quick cover, but Shawn kicks out. I didn’t think it was over there, and from the reaction of the crowd, neither did they. Considering the time Shawn had to recover, and the fact he kicked out of one last year, I don’t think anyone saw it as a credible finish. More tremendous selling from Undertaker when he collapses while trying to hit the Last Ride. Shawn uses this time to go for an elbow drop, but Undertaker gets his knees up! Again, The Undertaker sells tremendously when Shawn lands on his knees. Hells Gate is locked in, but Shawn counters it! I guess you could put it down to two things here; Shawn making sure he does everything he can to save his career, and Undertaker’s knee being so screwed up that he didn’t have full control of the move. A couple of back and forth finishers between the two now, with a couple of near falls, and while I did get caught up in the moment watching it live, this time I’m not as into them lol. Yeah, even watching live I knew they weren’t going to end the match, but seeing it happen for the first time was just better than on a re-watch. Still isn’t taking anything away from the match for me though. The table is set up for a table spot, which I predicted as soon as it was announced there were no DQ’s or Countouts. Loved what they did with it too, teasing a Last Ride, Superkicking ‘Taker onto the table, and then having Shawn hit a fucking incredible moonsault. Now, was Shawn SUPPOSED to land on Undertaker’s knees, or was he supposed to land on his chest as usual? I don’t know, but honestly I don’t care. Undertaker sold his legs again like fucking crazy, and it fit in perfectly with the story of Undertaker’s legs being fucked. So honestly I don’t care if it was a “botch” or not. Like the dive last year, it ADDED to the match rather than hurt it. And now the part where I nearly had a heart attack (it happened last year, and dammit, it happened again this year lol). Following the moonsault through the table, Undertaker was nearly done. So Shawn tried to end it once and for all with a huge Superkick, and I honestly believed 100% that it was over. When Undertaker kicked out I legit cheered lol. When a match can make me CHEER at my TV when I am sat watching it at home, you know it’s doing something right! My heart continues to take a pounding when Undertaker hits a second Tombstone, and Shawn manages to do what he failed to do last year… kick out! Not even close to the Tombstone kick out from last year, but it still did its job. And now for the finish. Beautiful. Perhaps my favourite finish to any match ever. Undertaker pulls down the straps, goes to signal for another Tombstone, but looks down at Shawn and stops. He tells Shawn to stay down, almost like he knows what he has to do, but doesn’t want to do it. He already said in a promo during the build up to the match that he wouldn’t take pleasure in ending Shawn’s career, and it came across so well right here. So you ask, WHY? Why wouldn’t Undertaker want to end Shawn’s career? Unlike 1997/1998 when they first feuded, last year’s match and this year’s match had NOTHING to do with sheer hatred. It was about the Streak last year, with Shawn wanting to prove he could end it. This year it was about the Streak once again, but with Shawn NEEDING to end it more than just proving he can. And The Undertaker had to respect Shawn for going to these lengths to try and do both. So Undertaker had sympathy for Shawn… but Shawn wasn’t going down without fighting until the very end. He wasn’t going to just give up. He gave the cut throat taunt once again, just like he did at the start of the match, and SLAPPED the Dead Man across his face! In a lot of ways, it was like Flair/HBK from WM 24. Shawn didn’t really want to land that last Superkick, but Flair basically begged him to do so, and Shawn was essentially begging Undertaker to finish it here too. So Undertaker does, and he does it with perhaps the biggest and best Tombstone of his career. He literally jumped in the air, and came crashing down with Shawn going head first into the match. 1… 2… 3! Good GOD! What a motherfucking masterpiece of a match. Best WrestleMania match ever. The story, the emotion, the action, the intensity… everything was there, and everything was perfect. *****.