Re: Official DVD/Match/Show Discussion Thread
Royal Rumble 2004:
*Batista & Ric Flair vs Dudley Boyz (Tables Match) - *3/4
- The stipulation excited me going into this but the match itself leaves a lot to be desired. They are given about 5 minutes and it just feels way too underwhelming. Batista & Flair retain the tag titles after Batista gives D-Von a spinebuster through a table and Jonathan Coachman randomly interferes to distract the Dudleyz. Would have been better as an elimination tables match given 5 more minutes.
*Rey Mysterio vs Jamie Noble - **1/2
- Cruiserweight matches are usually exciting and high paced but again, this one is barely given any time and throughout the few minutes, I was not really into it.
*Eddie Guerrero vs Chavo Guerrero - ***
- In under ten minutes, they do some standard wrestling with some decent storytelling in the way they sell the 'betrayal' angle. Ends a bit fast too but the best of the show so far. Eddie wins with the Three Amigos and the Frog Splash then proceeds to take out his frustrations on Chavo Sr. and Chavo Jr. post-match.
*Brock Lesnar vs Hardcore Holly - *
- ...And this is your WWE Championship match. From the previous year's Kurt Angle vs Chris Benoit classic, the title scene sinks this low which is unbelievable. After getting his neck broken by sandbagging, Bob Holly returns to get his revenge on Lesnar but the match itself is fucking garbage. They get about 6 minutes of time and for about half of it, they spend the time laying on the mat with a rear naked choke by Lesnar. Then out of nowhere, Lesnar gives Holly the F5 to win. So lacking, it's horrible. None of the intensity the storyline calls for and no entertainment in the match itself.
*HHH vs Shawn Michaels (Last Man Standing) - ***3/4
- This is Angle/Benoit to Lesnar/Holly's HHH/Steiner from the 2003 Rumble. The year before, the Smackdown main event followed the Raw one and embarrassed the fuck out of the red brand by following a horrible match with a classic ***** match. This LMS match doesn't compare to the Angle/Benoit classic on the same level but is a breath of fresh air in comparison to the WWE Championship stinker it follows. Not their best match together but still a good one. There's not much wrestling in here either apart from the beginning. Once HBK starts bleeding following that moonsault into the table, they just start hitting moves and then laying down for about an 8 count continuously. Both hit their finishers and after the Sweet Chin Music, it ends in a double count-out. Crowd is not happy about the result as they wanted Shawn to win the title. The amount of bleeding in this match in unbelievable. Probably a top 5 match in WWE history in terms of how much blood has been lost (specially involving both men rather than only one like Eddie/JBL).
*Royal Rumble Match - ****3/4
- I absolutely love this. Chris Benoit finally heads into the main event of Wrestlemania here after starting at number one and winning the whole damn thing. One of the best Rumble matches I've seen with a lot of storytelling advancements made as well. Goldberg is on a roll as the final entrant but the tension between him and Lesnar for the WM20 match continues to build when Lesnar interferes and F5s him, leading to his elimination. Randy Orton continues his feud with Mick Foley when Foley finds his way into the match and eliminates Orton (along with himself). And the ending is awesome with Big Show being extremely dominant, eliminating everyone who was on him (RVD, Cena, Angle, Jericho), leaving him with Benoit only but Benoit shows the heart of a champion by fighting his way into a legendary victory when he puts Big Show in a hold and eliminates the big man by using his weight against him.
Overall: ***1/2 out of ***** (The match card is lacking with only one of them getting anything above 10 minutes which is the World Heavyweight Championship match. It doesn't help that outside of one average and a good match, the rest of the card is pretty weak with the exception of the classic Rumble match which helps bump this into 3 and a half.)