Re: Official DVD/Match/Show Discussion Thread
The Big Show vs John Cena
Who better than to start off Wrestlemania XX, hyping up the crowd, then John Cena ? Did John Cena even know at this time what he would become I wonder ? Big Show comes out, and we have ourselves a decent but very basic opening contest. Power vs brawling here, as Big Show throws Cena around at the beginning of the match, showing Cena what he's in for. Big Show using power moves like the sidewalk slam and big boot to keep Cena down.
Cena comes back and actually hits the F-U, and the crowd goes nuts. Show actually kicks out of it, and it takes some cheating to put Big Show down for good. Basic Power vs Brawling contest here, I think it was a good choice to open the show because Cena was so hot at the time. Not great, but decent. Ending was nice.
World Tag Title Fatal 4 Way
Sudden death rules here, I don't see why this match exists other than to get everybody on the card, but whatever. Cade,Jindrak, and La Resistance are so sloppy in this match, but it's The Dudley Boyz and Booker/RVD that make this match somewhat decent and watchable. This is a mess as the action is everywhere and nobody knows where to focus. Scissors kick and 5 star end this quickly. Short match, nothing spectacular, total filler match. Not a bad match at all, just don't know why it exists.
Christian vs Chris Jericho
Okay, so I openly like this match alot. Former partners going at it here, we start off fast paced, with a ton of reverses by both men. They are really getting it across here that these two are equal, with neither being able to gain the advantage. Both men take MAJOR bumps to the outside (they seriously look painful as hell) and this is STILL equal. That front facelock slam just made me cringe, it looked like it was severely painful.
Christian working on the knees of Jericho here, and following through with his psychology, slaps on the Texas Cloverleaf (Malenko FTW), but Jericho somehow reverses this into the walls. That was a fantastic counter. Crazy double underhook from the top gets two, as Trish runs in and gets thrown down by Christian. The distraction causes Christian to roll up Jericho for the win (Trish turns heel after the match). FANTASTIC story being told here, as Trish was the X factor that broke the equality between the two men. The fast pace and stiff moves didn't hurt either. Borderline CLASSIC.
Evolution vs Rock 'N' Sock Connection
This isn't a great match by any means. However, this match proves to be one of the more entertaining contests I've seen, fans are going crazy for The Rock in this one. It's weird to see all of these combinations (Rock vs Batista, Rock vs Orton), but the chemistry isn't bad. For his last match in the company in a while, Rock isn't mailing it in unlike SOME people (We'll get to that later). Rock struts like Flair as I laugh because well....It's entertaining to say the least. Flair does his basic schtick here and the crowd eats it up, even his typical "being thrown off the top rope" gimmick gets the crowd crazy.
There are WAY too many clotheslines in this match. Foley takes a knee to the steps for the 65464th time in his career here, and wow.....Orton has his boring chinlock on Foley, this completely kills the momentum of the match. Rock is strutting WAYY too much here for my liking. This isn't really a match, but an entertainment fest mind you. Finishers galore, and Orton wins this with an RKO to Foley. This wasn't so much a match as it was a way to put the young guys over. Technically it was bad, but at the same time VERY entertaining. I'm going to be generous to this one.
Playboy Evening Gown Match
I have very little to say about this one. The wrestling sucked but all of the Divas looked extremely hot here. The crowd (mainly males) looked like they were going to jizz themselves when they saw this match. Gave the crowd something different, and a breather (which is needed for this long event). Harmless really.....DAMN they're sexy. Oh well, points for hotness keep this from "DUD" land.
Cruiserweight Open Match
I'm not a big fan of these gaunlet matches, but this one (while making absolutely no sense in terms of story and psychology) is just so damned entertaining and spotty that I just enjoy it. What can I say about this match ? People are getting pinned left, right, and center, as these things need about 30 minutes to work, but they're actually getting 10 minutes to pin 9 people...Okay then. There are many cool looking spots and high flying action in this though, for example, Ultimo Dragon and Billy Kidman are flying all over the place like there's no tomorrow.
No story, no psychology, just SPOTS. Rey gets pinned to give the match to Chavo, despite being in the ring for less than two minutes...Are you kidding me. That's the problem here: this would NOT happen in a real match. Plus, CHAVO WINS ? You couldn't give Rey (the much more marketable star) the win on the big stage ? You have to be KIDDING me. Oh well, this might be worth it just for Kidman's sitout powerbomb. Extremely entertaining, but mindless.
Goldberg vs Brock Lesnar
Oh we had to get to this one didn't we ? The truth about this match is that the crowd really dosen't give them a chance in this one. Right from the get-go we hear chants such as "You Sold Out" and "HOGAN! HOGAN!". So the crowd is chanting for Hogan in 2004 ? Okay then. They just stand there and stand there, and after almost THREE MINUTES they lock up. The lock-up lasts another 45 seconds with neither man gaining an advantage. I actually kinda like that as it shows them as equals. After about 6-7 minutes, a Goldberg military press slam wakes the crowd up. After that we get some GLIMPSES of what this match should have been like, clotheslines and slams, etc.
Even Steve Austin looked pissed at what happened. Honestly, this match is a horrible disgrace to put on Wrestlemania, but I don't think it's a DUD. That's the best compliment I can give. The first 7 minutes of the crowd is entertainingly bad and the last half of the match, while bad, has it's moments. I'd actually watch it again, as it's probably the best under * match I'll ever see. Goldberg wins this after an exchange of finishers, although it really lacked drama.
WWE Tag Title Fatal 4 Way
Another filler tag match that should have been on a B-level show (or possibly Smackdown), but we have to get these guys on the show, so why not give the fans a breather ? Let me sum this match up in a few sentences: The Bashams were boring as hell in this, Too Cool were WAY past there prime at this point, The WGTT was fucking awesome and should have one this match, while the APA had Bradshaw, the man who would be WWE Champion in 3 months. Isn't THAT crazy to think about ? Anyways, this match was short but sweet, especially when the APA and WGTT got together, I love the brawling vs technical aspect. Too Cool (who haven't meant anything in years) wins this in Rikishi's last hurrah at Wrestlemania.
Molly Holly vs Victoria
This is hair vs hair here, and it's ALL about the angle. These two start off with some simple moves like wristlocks and snapmares, trying to gain an advantage, but then all of a sudden they're cranking it up to 200 MPH doing superplexes and powerbombs. Next thing I know, Victoria gets the pin and the match is over ? What can I even say about this. I just watched it and it flew by like nothing. FIVE MINUTES LONG. Oh well. This wasn't very good, but it deserves some credit for a few decent minutes of matwork.
Eddie Guerrero vs Kurt Angle
WWE Championship on the line here. Great chain wrestling sequence to start us off here, as it gives Eddie a chance to say "Hey Kurt, I can be technical too". Judo throw and side headlock by Angle, but Eddie manages to get a body scissors to neutralize Angle. I just love subtle things like that. The crowd is just eating up this mat-wrestling, as they go crazy for a Guerrero fireman's carry and keylock. Oh yeah, you KNEW we had to get an Angle German suplex in this one (comes off the reversal of the three amigos, nice counter). Here's your first bump as Eddie dives chest first into the outside railing. A good mix of action and wrestling here.
Angle begins to see an opening here and works on the midsection. Using impact moves such as belly to belly's, Angle grabs the momentum. Eddie has an opportunity to gain the momentum back, but loses it quickly as he misses a frog splash. Love how quickly the momentum can change in this one. They hit each other with some clenched fists and Eddie wants more (reminiscent of earlier in the storyline, makes a ton of sense), and the two exchange suplexes. Angle ALWAYS has a counter for the triple vertical suplexes. Just like in NWO, Eddie counters a finisher into a DDT and hits the frog splash, only this time Angle kicks out. GREAT near fall. Angle gets the ankle lock here, but Eddie escapes, unties his boot, and one of my favorite endings to a match ensues. Angle goes for the angle lock but the boot comes off, Eddie plays possum and rolls Angle up for the win. This fit Eddie's character GENIUSLY. Love this match very much. An absolute classic.
Undertaker vs Kane
Not the best match in the universe, but damn this is a FANTASTIC moment. You can say all the shit in the world about this match, but if you never marked out for the "OHHH YESSS" from Paul Bearer, or the first glimpse of the deadman, you should get your pulse checked out. This also has one of my favorite beginnings to a match ever, as Kane can't believe this is real, goes to touch Taker, and Taker goes absolutely haywire on him. I might be the only person who gets goosebumps watching that opening sequence, but I absolutely love it.
Kane gets in a few shots here but this is a complete squash as it should be. Kane gets like 3 moves, and it's all Taker from that point out. The situp and tombstone had me marking like a bitch. I don't really care if the "match" is bad, but this segment as an entire was awesome. The deadman lives (what an oxymoron) on at WM XX, and it was fucking awesome.
Triple H vs Shawn Michaels vs Chris Benoit
Main event time, here we go. Opening exchange is great, as both HBK and Benoit play into Triple H's plan that "Their ego's will tear them apart". HHH comes back in when he feels he has the best chance of taking advantage, and gains control of the match. Subtle things in this match (like Benoit ramming his shoulder into HHH's gut twice, only to try a third time and have Trips stick his knee out, destroying Benoit) match it work smoothly. HHH and Benoit get outside the ring as we get WM main event spot # 1: A Shawn Michaels moonsault outside the ring. That was fantastic. There are many finisher attempts and many saves here, as the drama is at an all time high here.
DAMN those rolling Germans are awesome, nobody does them better than Benoit. Shawn gets launched into the post as we have my only problem with this match: Shawn's bladejob. For the love of god, he went head first into the post, and he looks as if he was chainsaw massacred. That dosen't make me think twice about this match though, as we get a great moment where Shawn wants to tap but HHH grabs his hand. This is the turning point of the match, as both Shawn and HHH realize that Benoit is a crazed animal that they need to neutralize. DX (cool looking visual) puts Benoit through the table. HHH gets busted on the post as well. Okay, WHAT IS UP WITH THOSE BLADEJOBS ? Well, these two ARE close to Ric Flair.
God Damn this is intense. All three hit their finishers and save each other as the match gets closer to its end. Benoit is somehow still alive and reverses the SCM, backdropping Shawn out of the ring. In one of the most dramatic moments I've ever seen, Triple H is waiting behind him saying "bring it". Now, at this point I'm guessing 99 percent of people watching this were saying "THAT DAMN HHH! HE'S GOING TO BURY ANOTHER PUSH ! FUCK YOU!" but Benoit actually reverses the pedigree into a crossface, in which HHH eventually taps. What can I say about this match that hasn't already been said ? It's a piece of ART, from top to bottom. The slow build, subtle psychology, amazing false-finishes, and PERFECT drama makes this one of the greatest matches of all time, in my humble opinion of course. What a way to end Wrestlemania XX, with Benoit and Guerrero on top of the world.
This is one of the hardest shows I've ever had to grade for a few reasons, so lets run down the card quickly. A decent crowd pumping opener, a filler tag match, a borderline classic, an entertainment fest, a hot divas match, an entertaining but nonsensical cruiserweight bout, an entertainingly fuck-fest that was Lesnar-Goldberg, ANOTHER filler tag, ANOTHER angle fueled women's match, the return of the Undertaker, and two CLASSIC championship matches. All of that happened in one show. The thing about this show is that it's good but it can get tiresome. If you break up watching it into two two-hour sessions, It'll be alot smoother for you.
I like it though, as even the bad matches tend to be entertaining. I could have went without the tag matches and the cruiserweight matches to cut a good 40 minutes off of this, maybe even the Victoria-Molly match. You cut 40-50 minutes off of this and it's a MASTERPIECE of a show and one of the best mania's ever. However, you can't dismiss the bad stuff on this show. Definitely more good then bad, and for Wrestlemania XX, I thought it lived up to expectations. This show just has that special feel to it. It's undescribeable really...
"He's not the biggest. He was never the strongest. He was never the fastest. He was overlooked. He went in the sixth round. So with that being said, all of the intangibles that a quarterback is supposed to have, they overlooked it with him because it was burning from inside of him" - Ray Lewis on Tom Brady