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*.