Re: Official DVD/Match/Show Discussion Thread
Undertaker 1999 PPV Matches:
(note: I realize I skipped No Mercy (UK)... though I actually have a plan for that and all other UK PPVs later on)
Undertaker vs. Big Bossman WM15 Hell in a Cell:
My god... why? Why did I sit through this? I mean I knew it was terrible and I knew what I was getting myself into. But good god. I was trying to find something to like about the match to not give it a dud, and the only thing I could come up with was Bearer's trash talk to Bossman... and that just ain't enough. Okay, let's talk about the good first. Undertaker's entrance attire was awesome. The aftermatch was pretty cool. And as I mentioned, Bearer was hilarious during the match. That's about all I got. Now the bad... the workrate was abysmal. I don't see what the story of the match was. The cell was hardly used. It felt like a really bad PG cell match with blood, and it was pretty fucking sloppy. The crowd was fucking dead and only came slightly alive for the tombstone. The match had no real significance at all in the grand scheme of things. This just might be Taker's worst match ever, the worst Cell match ever, and one of the worst matches ever. The only saving grace is that it was less than 10 minutes... though honestly it dragged on so much it felt like a 20+ minute match. I have so much to say about this match, more than any other probably, but I'll just leave it at that. Don't watch this match... I warned you. Even if you're a Taker mark, all it'll do is make you cry.
Undertaker vs. Ken Shamrock Backlash 99
I had no recollection of this match. I may have watched it a long time ago, but I couldn't remember anything in this match for the life in me. What I saw though was a great match. Not everything was fluid in the match and flowed neatly, but it was a great fight. I can't remember much from this mini-feud between Taker and Shamrock tbh, but from what I gathered from commentary Shamrock's sister was brought into the Ministry craziness, so the personal element was played out well and Shamrock played his role of trying to rip Taker apart to the best of his ability. He used basic small man vs. big man psychology by destroying the vertical base of Taker, but it also just happened to play into his submission finisher the ankle lock. Taker's selling of Shamrock's leg work was great as well, and the ending was a great way to have Taker win and keep Shamrock looking good. It came down to Shamrock having to deal with Bradshaw, Paul Bearer, and of course the man he was in a fight with, Taker. I wasn't expecting this match to be as good as it was, but damn it was a great match in my view. The sour thing in this match though is the crowd, but since I believe this was heel vs. heel and not a high profile match, the crowd couldn't give a shit less, which is unfortunate. This match could've been 4 stars with a much better crowd.
Undertaker vs. Austin Over the Edge 1999 (WWE Championship)
Match was a chore to sit through to be honest. It wasn't terrible, but it just went on and on and on, and wasn't that enjoyable. Shane's slow counts and then him even telling Undertaker at one point "That wasn't fair!" was hilarious, as well as Bearer hitting Austin with his shoe and JR/King's commentary was great as well, which it always was back then. But really the match is incredibly boring, and at the end of the day it was plagued by the fact Owen Hart died on the same night, and that took precedence over anything else that night (and rightfully so), as well as the fact the ending was a fast count, which never bodes well with me. Not to mention I doubt Taker and Austin were in hit 100% mentally after the Owen Hart incident. It's an "eh" match for me, but nothing more.
Undertaker vs. Rock King of the Ring 1999 (WWE Championship)
This was a great attitude era style brawl. This match though is one of my favorites of all time for one simple reason... all the ridiculous arguments my brother and I had about it back when I was a kid, lmao. I was the big Taker mark, he was the big Rock mark. He would watch this match and say "Rock had the match won with the Rock-bottom in the first two minutes and should've been champion!" I would say "Shoulda, woulda, coulda." He brings up what happened with the people's elbow and Rock having it won there, I counter with the fact it was Rock who bumped into the ref and knocked him down. HHH comes in and screws Rock and I say Rock tried to cheat Taker by using that rag (even though Taker was the one that brought it in ). And there's a lot more. Overall this match is just a lot of fun to watch just to bring back those memories. Good times... good times. But the match itself is very good as well.
Undertaker vs. Austin Fully Loaded 1999 First Blood Match (WWE Championship)
Fantastic match. Maybe Taker and Austin's best match. This really felt like a war. The two of them ripping at each other's head and because of what happened earlier in the night, the (repetitive) strikes through most of the match do make a lot of sense. I paticularly love the moment where Taker bumps into the ref and then starts kicking him after he's down... makes me lol everytime. Vince getting involved to save his job also works really well, and X-Pac ultimately helping Austin sets up Taker/Show vs. Kane/X-Pac for SS nicely... though I'm not sure as to why X-Pac would interfere since I don't remember the story that well, but I'm sure there was a reason. Overall awesome match and Taker's best match of 1999 by a good margin. Actually this match was better than I remembered it.
Undertaker/Big Show vs. X-Pac/Kane Summerslam 1999 (WWE Tag Team Championship)
A great tag match here. They get right to fighting, with Taker/X-pac going at it and Show/Kane going at it. Eventually Taker and Show get the better of Kane. I do like the fact that when X-pac got the hot tag mid-match they didn't just have him all of a sudden going super and all of a sudden able to compete with Taker. He got in a few moves but ultimately was overpowered by Taker and Show. Then the control segment of X-pac we all knew needed to be in this match was, and it was great. Big Show absolutely dominating X-pac, before a low-blow. I like where Taker grabs X-pac, taunts Kane, and it ends up screwing him as X-pac makes the tag and Kane goes crazy on Show and Taker. The ending is awesome as well as even though Taker and Show won the match, Taker goes crazy on Show for not getting the victory with the chokeslam due to his weak one foot cover. Overall there a bunch of little elements, combined with a good workrate and some decent storytelling to make this a great one and end Taker's 1999 PPV matches on a good note. The Unholy Alliance was interesting and it's a shame it never really played out due to Taker's injury getting really bad.
So overall 1999 wasn't as bad of a year for Taker as I thought it was. Had a borderline classic in Taker/Austin, great matches with Rock and Shamrock, and a very good tag match at Summerslam. Yeah the Austin Over the Edge match wasn't up to snuff, and the Bossman match is one of the worst matches ever, but overall a solid year for Taker, who was also injured at some point during it or for all of it, not really sure.
Looking to 2000, I'm looking forward to watching the Unforgiven 4-way, as I haven't seen that match in forever. Also both Angle matches I can't wait to see either. I don't remember them being anywhere near the classic level of their 2003 SD and their NWO 06 match, but I think I remember them being great. The 6-man cell is always a joy to watch. The 6-man tag match at KOTR isn't something good, and it's the first match, but I'm pretty sure it's the worst from Taker in 2000... that or Taker's match with Kane at Summerslam, which I vaguely remember.
I'm watching you...