Re: Official DVD/Match/Show Discussion Thread
Just finished watching Backlash 2003 and before I go to bed, I'll rate it and the other two 2003 PPVs I've watched so far and skipped rating.
Royal Rumble 2003:
Brock Lesnar vs Big Show - **1/2
Nothing special, just needlessly done to get Brock more over as a face in his fight with Heyman after being betrayed.
Dudley Boyz vs William Regal/Lance Storm - **3/4
Throughout the first half of 2003 so far, I feel like I've watched this over and over every week on Raw until Regal was injured.
Torrie Wilson vs Dawn Marie - N/A
They aren't really wrestlers, so no point in this one, although I laughed at the storyline with Dawn "killing" Torrie's dad.
HHH vs Scott Steiner - *
Aaahh, this classic, hahaha! Match is so bad, it's unbelievable. Both seem out of energy and the whole thing goes so slowly. Plus Steiner does that belly-to-belly about 500 times over and over. And he also botched that Tiger bomb. (or whatever that underhook move he used is)
Kurt Angle vs Chris Benoit - *****
What a relief to watch this after the awful Raw title match. Two of the best technical wrestlers go at it and the submission counters are so awesome. These guys have unbelievable chemistry and this is just another classic in their list.
Royal Rumble match - ***1/4
Felt a bit underwhelming. Brock winning by eliminating a distracted Undertaker was a good finish for face Brock with Undertaker shaking his hand afterward, but it just didn't have the excitement throughout the most of it, something the best Rumble matches have. The one feud heading into this match was Shawn Michaels and Jericho and that lasted about one minute in the beginning before Jericho destroyed Michaels and eliminated him fast.
Overall Rating: ***1/4 out of ***** (The WWE Championship saves this one big time and the Rumble was good enough to keep the rating in the middle)
No Way Out 2003:
Chris Jericho vs Jeff Hardy - ***
Meh, decent match but they had the exact same on Raw a couple of weeks before. Also the exact same finish with Hardy tapping out to the Walls.
Regal/Storm vs Kane/RVD - **1/4
What a stale tag division, same teams being switched around for the most part and there have been so many match-ups between Dudleyz/Kane & RVD/Storm & Regal, I don't even remember it well.
Matt Hardy vs Billy Kidman - ***1/2
Two good cruiserweight workers putting on a decent match that is typical of most cruiserweights in wrestling. Nothing much to say. Oh, and Version 1 wins the cruiserweight title like he promised!
Undertaker vs Big Show - **3/4
So Taker is dying to get his hands on Big Show during the entire build-up and beats him here in an average match. Kinda pointless if you ask me since that only made their WM rematch involving A-Train even less worthy of anticipation.
Brock Lesnar/Chris Benoit vs Team Angle/Kurt Angle - ***1/2
Edge was supposed to be in the face team but got injured and was out for over a year, missing WM19 and WM20 in the process. As for the match, it's got 5 solid workers in it so you can't expect anything less than good from them. Would be a better Smackdown main event than a PPV match, which only shows you how much of a filler No Way Out is here.
HHH vs Scott Steiner - **
As if the last match wasn't bad enough, they had to have a rematch again. This time it's not as bad, but still, it's another addition to bad matches HHH had during his "reign of terror".
Stone Cold vs Eric Bischoff - N/A
Not even a real match, Austin finally returns after being away since the walk-out and gets his revenge on Bischoff from long before when he got fired in WCW. Austin kicks Bischoff's ass for about 5 minutes and gives him numerous Stunners before going for the pin. Nothing missed.
The Rock vs Hulk Hogan - **1/2
The PPV was sold entirely on this match and Stone Cold's return. It's not surprising that no one talks about this. While their original WM18 is remembered as one of the greatest face-offs, this one was just a set-up for the Hogan/McMahon feud that followed. I also found the screwjob finish pretty funny but other than that... watch this once if you want, but you wont miss out on much if you don't.
Overall Rating: ** out of ***** (Filler in every way possible. Most of the matches have next to no build-up and the only one, or rather two, matches with any of it are nothing special.)
Team Angle vs Los Guerreros - ***3/4
A pretty good opener with four great in-ring workers. The Guerreros do their usual work at delivering to the fans and getting cheered while lying, cheating and stealing. Mostly standard tag-team action but with the good, fast paced workers on board, the results are highly enjoyable.
Sean O'Haire vs Rikishi - *1/2
Meh. Absolutely nothing to see here. Piper is in O'Haire's corner and takes a coconut to the face (shoulder, actually) but personally, I couldn't care less about this and the whole Snuka/Piper thing which was about 20 years old at this point.
RVD/Kane vs Dudley Boyz - ***
The two out of three tag teams on Raw that had not been matched-up against each other yet in PPV do it here. Some fine action here with a bit of drama as Chief Morley is the special referee in Dudleyz' favor and accidentally clotheslines Bubba Ray, causing the two to kill their alliance and that lets Kane and RVD to take advantage and win with the trademark Chokeslam, followed by 5* Frog Splash.
Trish Stratus vs Jazz - **1/2
It's an okay match for the women's division with Trish finally losing to Jazz but she kind of forgets to sell her rib injury throughout a lot of the match which brings it down a notch. It's short and good while it lasts.
Big Show vs Rey Mysterio - **3/4
This one ends pretty fast and as expected, Big Show overcomes with no problem. Although he takes plenty of bumps for Rey in this giant vs little man match-up. Rey does all he can to get the upper-hand on Big Show with three 619s and a chair shot but Big Show proves dominant through all of that. Post-match, after Rey is about to get carried out on a stretcher, Show takes it and recklessly hits it against the ring-post like a baseball bat. Rey looks like he lands on his face after.
Brock Lesnar vs John Cena - ****
I really like this match. First Brock starts with the offense but then Cena starts to gain momentum after whipping Brock into the steel steps. He puts on a couple of restholds, though, both of which last a bit too long. Then he tries to do his usual heel thing and use the steel chain but the referee stops him and he falls victim to a F5 which gives Brock the victory. I think Cena should have gotten a bit more offense, as the only nearfall he gets is the roll-up after low-blowing Brock away from the referee's sight. He didn't even get to FU Brock throughout the match. Still, a pretty good match-up which was redone 9 years later in a different manner.
HHH/Ric Flair/Chris Jericho vs Shawn Michaels/Kevin Nash/Booker T - ***1/4
Booker and Jericho really have no business being in this one as it's all about the Cliq. They are just thrown in to make the card. As for the Cliq and Flair, this is Nash's comeback after an injury and for the most of it, there's Shawn being attacked for a big part of the match by the heels in standard tag-team fashion until he gets the hot tag to Nash and he finally faces off with HHH. All wrestlers start brawling all around the ring and then Nash returns inside to clean house but he pushes the referee out of the ring, which Hunter takes advantage of and hits him with the sledgehammer for the victory. Kind of unexpected finish since he didn't even hit his finisher but that's it. A very half-assed match similar to the Smackdown tag-team match between the main eventers at No Way Out.
The Rock vs Goldberg - ***1/2
The Rock's final singles match until WM28 with Cena, also Goldberg's WWE debut. This lasts about 15 minutes and relies a lot on signature moves which I have no problem with. Goldberg gets the victory after 2 vicious Spears and the Jackhammer. A decent match for someone like me who enjoys over-reliance on spots rather than "PSYCHOLOGIII!!!!!1111".
Overall Rating: ***1/4 out of ***** (An average PPV with some good stuff and other forgettable parts. Only matches really PPV worthy here are the main event, the WWE Championship match and the opening tag team contest. Everything else was either filler or unmemorable.)