Official DVD/Match/Show Discussion Thread - Page 847 - Wrestling Forum : WWE, TNA, Debate League, Wrestling Videos, Women of Wrestling Forums
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Old 11-04-2012, 11:10 PM   #8461 (permalink)
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Default Re: Official DVD/Match/Show Discussion Thread

Ground Zero. That match is good. That's all I'd say on that.

The 2 minute Henry vs Morrison match from a RAW in 2011 was actually awesome for what it was. If only it had about 8-10 minutes in between there it would have been superb. Crowd ate it up regardless in thinking Henry would lose. Starship Pain spot got a good reaction from the fans. Then Henry got PISSED only to crush Morrison right after kicking out of SP.
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Old 11-04-2012, 11:17 PM   #8462 (permalink)
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The GZ 97 match (and the PPV in general for that matter) is one of the most underrated I've seen for sure. Storytelling at it's finest and perhaps the best "set-up" match ever (well, it is ). Clique , I wanna see that Wrestlemania XXVI review just to compare, throw it on here RIGHT NOW YOUNG MAN :hhh :hhh :hhh
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Old 11-04-2012, 11:29 PM   #8463 (permalink)
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Default Re: Official DVD/Match/Show Discussion Thread

It's not that good like your reviews tbh, just me marking out a bunch:


Spoiler for Streak vs. Career:

STREAK vs. CAREER
Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels


"If I can't beat you, I have no career!"

Defiance is what Shawn Michaels has brought to Undertaker to make this rematch happen. Shawn was told “there are plenty of other guys” he could face at WrestleMania XXVI but Shawn responded almost prophetically, “Not for me.” Last year, Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels needed to happen for the fans but this year I believe it needed to happen for Shawn Michaels.

Everything Shawn has gone through from Ric Flair’s retirement to the injuries and the obsessions have fatefully built to this final larger-than-life encounter. This time Undertaker's phenomenal 17-0 winning Streak is on the line but so is Shawn Michaels' incredible 25 year career.

The conditions here were ideal: Shawn was on a “relentless pursuit for perfection” and the Undertaker is the only one for him to create that ultimate WrestleMania moment. The only way to win this match is by pin-fall or submission because Shawn wants a definitive winner – no excuses or escapes.

This match has been called “the most anticipated match in WrestleMania history.” Personally, last year was the most anticipated match of all time for me but anytime it’s The Deadman vs. The Heartbreak Kid the excitement is astronomical. This has to be one of the Top 5 biggest WrestleMania matches of all time.

People said they had the greatest WrestleMania match ever at WrestleMania XXV. I made that statement myself. After their classic performance at WrestleMania XXV I couldn’t have asked for more as a wrestling fan. People also said it would be impossible for them to top or even match the year before. Yet, one year later, Shawn and Undertaker are at WrestleMania again giving us more and then some!

I want to point out something I loved about their entrances this year - they are perfect! Shawn didn't zip line over the crowd or ascend from the heavens this year. No, he came out just as the regular SHAWN MICHAELS which is much more special for a lifelong fan like me.

Undertaker, however, rose from the depths of Hell dressed like the Grim Reaper of Souls coming to put Shawn’s career to rest. Simple things like that put the match on another level for me before the action even begins. Shawn's throat cut gesture is absolutely the perfect way to start this epic rematch because he's figuratively slapping death right in the face.

Shawn and Undertaker are here to END IT and they have to take the other man out as quickly as possible before any mistakes are made because as we saw last year, Shawn's one mistake cost him the match. Neither man can afford that this time so I appreciate how they both brought the fire out from the opening bell.

Unfortunately, Undertaker made a HUGE mistake in delivering his Old School which injured his knee in the opening moments of the biggest match of his career. This only puts me on the brink of uncertainty more because it would be a believable story if Shawn beat an injured Undertaker to break the Streak and save his career.



I loved Shawn’s focused attack to Undertaker’s knee. We see brilliant psychology at play from Shawn when he feigned a Sweet Chin Music attempt to expose the severity of Undertaker’s injury. Once Shawn knew Undertaker was hurt it was like blood in the water and he viciously attacked. From the stiff kicks to the knee to Shawn applying the Figure Four leg-lock and Ankle lock, we see that Shawn’s determination but also adaptation he’s learned. Shawn used weapons of past WrestleMania opponents which tell us on a beautiful piece of his storybook career. It’s a case of what doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger, but you also can use what almost killed you to damage another.

This isn’t just a match for the ages but it’s a match of their careers. They not only incorporated callback spots from Shawn’s WrestleMania 21 and XXIV matches but I saw things that go back even further in their own rivalry together. Spots such as Undertaker driving Shawn’s back into the steel post with intentions of reinjuring Shawn’s back and also putting the match on an even plain field since his knee is injured in such a high stakes contest. I couldn’t believe Undertaker again would risk crippling himself with the suicide dive but Shawn intervened again by torpedoing his body into The Deadman’s knees. This is an absolutely fine wrestling match.

There are several spots in this match I love such as Shawn’s kip up straight into the Chokeslam and Undertaker sacrificing his knees to block the diving elbow drop. But one I really marked out for was the play on their WrestleMania XXV finish mixed with a callback from Undertaker’s WrestleMania 8 match with the Tombstone Piledriver on the floor! Now that was sick! It also looked like a move of desperation from Undertaker considering he was almost at a loss of breath after.

That brings me to Undertaker’s selling overall in this match which is nothing short of flawless. Undertaker sold his injury like his leg was hanging to his body by a thread. It may be the best selling I’ve ever seen in a wrestling match. The two Last Ride attempts were awesome. In the first attempt Undertaker’s knees gave out. In the second attempt I thought Undertaker sold his injury exceptional well when he spun around with Shawn in his hands so that his knees could get under him enough to hit the Last Ride with as much force as possible!

It felt like Undertaker was working with a legit injury the entire match. The pain on his face, the strain in his voice as he yells and the heavy breathing all sold to me that this may be not only one of the most physically enduring matches of his career but the toughest test of his life! But I still can’t get over what may be Undertaker’s best performance selling the knee. I find all of his limping, striking his leg and grabbing the ropes just to stand up to be such an incredible showcase of the man’s greatness.

Shawn was great too. I swear when Shawn has a pained, emotionally frustrated look on his face with his arm stretched forward in the air almost searching for an extra source of strength, it is one of the most powerful things for me in some of his matches. That is one of the reasons why I have always gotten so emotionally wound up in his matches. I am still amazed at Shawn’s showcase of athleticism.



What I call the Moonsault of Death has to be one of the most amazing sights I have ever witnessed live. Shawn landed on Undertaker’s knees and may have snapped them. Much like the suicide dive Undertaker took at WrestleMania XXV, the move may not have hit the way it was intended to hit but the results fit the story of the match. The story naturally came together and they are able to create art from it because of their extraordinary chemistry together. You would think Shawn wanted to obliterate Undertaker’s knees they way he landed on them with so much rage.

I totally bought into the false finishes too at the end. Shawn gave Undertaker one of the biggest Sweet Chin Musics ever and I swear I had flashbacks to WrestleMania XII at that point only this time I wasn’t cheering for the match to be over. I was in the crowd shouting, “NO! NO! NO! KICK OUT!!!” The guy in front of me turned around with a smile on his face when Taker barely kicked out. Now that I think about it he should have been too busy marking out hard too. I was freaking losing my mind for everything they did and I’m still fascinated with the match and not with how the crowd is reacting.

When Undertaker caught Shawn for the Chokeslam after another SCM attempt, he looked like he was about to cry as he struggled to go over and hit him with another Tombstone! Every time I get to this point in the match I say to myself this is one of the most beautiful matches I’ve ever seen. I thought the second Tombstone was it too much like last year it took two Tombstones to put Shawn away but it wasn’t. I don’t know if everyone caught it but Undertaker kicking Shawn in the head was so bad ass! This match is the quintessential showdown in the desert between, in my opinion, the two greatest ever!



The closing moments are once again excellent storytelling in a dramatic finish reminiscent of two years ago when Shawn retired Ric Flair. That is where Shawn's road to this point began and now the career of the greatest performer ever ends in the most dramatic way. Within the context of the storyline of the match, it was definitely a case of Michaels earning Undertaker's ultimate respect. The streak is important to Undertaker, but he was just exasperated that Michaels wouldn't stay down and wasn't sure he wanted to end it all. Michaels never wanted Undertaker to go easy on him.

Shawn demanded Undertaker give him everything he had even if it meant Shawn had to signal the finish himself because as Shawn profoundly and prophetically stated if he couldn’t beat Undertaker he doesn’t need to wrestle any more. Hell no to Shawn staying down, Undertaker HAD to be the one to end Shawn Michaels’ career and Shawn made sure the end happened.

The slap to the face certainly reassured Undertaker to lay the nail in. Shawn was defiant until the end with the cut throat gesture and slap, and Undertaker was defiant in sacrificing his knees and maybe Shawn’s neck in a jumping, SPIKE Tombstone Piledriver from Hell! For the love of God what a masterpiece!



It is inevitable for comparisons to be made between the WrestleMania XXV match and this one so I’ll tell you what I think. WrestleMania XXV had an electric aura to it that made every second essentially EPIC. The crowd was without question better too which made for a better atmosphere. This match isn’t as polished as WMXXV. It’s a little rougher, there’s an extra emphatic statement in every move. Because of the added stipulations and the break-neck pace from the start, there is a sense of urgency here so intense that makes the entire match feel like a 24-minute finishing stretch.

As for which match is the better of the two? Honestly, I can't give you a definite answer. Both matches completely captured my imagination and indeed represent everything I love about wrestling. WrestleMania XXV is an absolute thrill ride and XXVI is an enduring, emotional story for the ages. I hold both as the two greatest WrestleMania matches ever.


THE ULTIMATE WRESTLEMANIA MOMENT

My eyes did tear up when Undertaker opened up for Shawn and the world to see more of his emotions as if we hadn’t seen enough in his enduring performance. I respect and admire these two men more than any other wrestlers and here they created the ultimate WrestleMania moment.

The story of Shawn Michaels’ career these last couple of years has almost been biblical. Shawn has never hid his faith from us. He devotes his life to submitting himself to a higher cause. This is difficult for any man to accomplish - religious or not – and I believe Shawn wanted that to be showcased the final stretch of his career . His obsession of tarnishing Taker's undefeated WrestleMania streak was Michaels' way of encouraging us to forego our selfish and often materialistic goals in favor of having faith and hope. At least that’s what I want to believe.



Shawn Michaels stripped himself bare of any self-centeredness - from his standard entrance to the ring to a pyro-less walk back up the ramp - all of which allowed every fan to not be distracted from the beautiful performance that he and Undertaker put on. Shawn simply said, "This is all I can offer," and he humbly gave us his best work, and for that wrestling fans will always honor him. The emotion and the beauty of these moments will be preserved in my mind forever.


THANK YOU SHAWN ... GOODBYE




For the hell of it here's WM 25 and WM27 reviews:


Spoiler for GOAT:
The Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels
WrestleMania XXV
April 5, 2009


“Sometimes it is HELL trying to get to HEAVEN”

One of the biggest crowd reactions live in Reliant Stadium happened when the graphic image of Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels came up on the big screen. This dream match will go down in history as one of the most anticipated matches ever. Fans all over the internet and all over the world demanded to see this match and many times it seemed it would only be a dream. Thank God this match happened.

Taker and especially Shawn went through insurmountable amounts of hell on their road to this moment. Last year, Taker was stripped of the World Title and we all saw maybe a sign to the end of his career when he was banned from the WWE. Shawn went through hell with Chris Jericho and JBL threatening his career and his family both physically and financially. Both legends have suffered and still suffer from nagging career threatening injuries.

Undertaker has never defeated Shawn Michaels in a one on one match. Shawn is 2-0 against Taker, but that doesn't mean Taker hasn’t had "victories" over The Heart Break Kid. It was The Deadman that tossed Shawn over the top rope to win the 2007 Royal Rumble Match after a legendary showdown. It was Taker that caused Shawn’s back injury in their casket match over 10 years ago.

Shawn Michaels is “Mr. WrestleMania.” He says he OWNS WrestleMania and quite frankly he has the resume to back that claim up without question. Undertaker is WrestleMania’s Phenom with 16 wins and zero losses in what everyone knows as THE STREAK.

Shawn says this is a match of lightness versus darkness and through the extraordinary entrances from both legends it feels larger-than-life.

They masterfully implemented specific elements, or psychology, from their prior encounters into this match, starting with Shawn’s degenerate and defiant attitude towards “the most dangerous entity to ever step foot in a ring.” Shawn’s crotch chop in Taker’s face is like spitting in the face of death. As we know in reality, no matter how much man tries to dodge death in the end he will lose. However, if that man internally believes in his soul that he has ever lasting life through some divine intervention, maybe that is enough for a victory.

The dynamic between Taker and HBK wrestling each other has always been fascinating to me. Taker is much bigger and stronger than Shawn so it makes sense for Taker to dominate a lot in their matches. Shawn will obviously use the hit and run/mind games routine to gain the advantage. HBK does that with his knife edge chops that at first irritate the beast but soon the stinging shots take effect.

It wouldn’t have been smart if Shawn did not attack Taker's bad knees so when he did I wasn’t surprised. I also thought it was so smart psychologically for HBK to fake a knee injury so he can gain the advantage. Shawn will end The Streak, if he can, at all costs.

Taker and Michaels had me captivated with every move and transition. It was as if they were telling a story for everything they performed. Take for instance the crossface Michaels applied, to some it looked like Shawn accidentally didn’t properly have it on Taker. I saw it differently; Undertaker is well versed in submissions and you can see how he is trying to block and fight out of the move by throwing elbows and trying to roll out of the hold.

A spot that I jump out of my seat for every time I watch it is the counter sequence midway in the match. Taker catches Shawn flying off the top rope for the Chokeslam but Shawn strikes for Sweet Chin Music, Taker ducks the kick, then Shawn goes for a Figure Four and Taker locks in Hell's Gate!

The match never really runs at a super fast pace and I think is better for the atmosphere. We get to absorb every second of its greatest. There’s almost an indescribable “epic feel” in the air. The crowd of over 70,000 went absolutely insane for everything presented to us. Every twist and turn got massive reactions. People can say the match outcome was too predictable all they want but the fact of the matter is I haven’t seen so many people on the edge of their seats putting so much passion into a match in a long time. I feel the cameras don't fully capture the actual atmosphere in the stadium.

The crowd was genuinely at a hushed silence in concern for the health of Taker when he almost literally committed a suicide dive. It was a scary watching a near seven foot man torpedo himself head first from God knows how high straight into the floor! Never mind the fact that it is incredible a man his size and age is still so athletically gifted.

Going back to Shawn’s old antics coming out, this certainly isn’t the first time he’s put a camera man in harm’s way in a match with Taker! I as well as everyone bought the possible count out victory Shawn tried to use to break the streak. He looked so desperate pleading for the ref to count Taker out of the match. It was very intense seeing Taker struggle to make it back into the ring.

The long but breathtaking finishing stretch of counters and near falls from finisher after finisher is some of the most exciting wrestling I’ve ever witnessed. Shawn kicked out of everything Taker gave him including a Chokeslam from Hell, The Last Ride and a Tombstone Piledriver which is unprecedented!


Nothing compares to the look on Undertaker’s face after Michaels kicked out of the Tombstone!

I didn’t have a problem with Shawn willing his body to kick out of Taker’s finishers. He sold everything like near death and never strayed from that. You can see when Shawn did kick out it looked like his body just naturally jumped off the mat. He then looked like an almost lifeless survivor slumped over after being dropped from a flight of stairs. In a match of this magnitude I can accept the extra determination a wrestler may have to keep fighting. I have certainly seen more overdone near falls in a wrestling match but it really does work for this match so well. They used the ‘WWE big match style’ to perfection. It was good on the commentator’s part to say it may have been divine intervention that keeps Shawn in the match.

Another thing I want to touch on is the perfect execution of this match. The DDT counter Shawn delivered half way from the Tombstone position on Taker’s shoulders looked cool. It was a desperate counter and looked as such. Shawn got the immediate advantage and we saw another near fall after Taker kicked out of the Sweet Chin Music for the second time!

I love the throw down they had with soup bones landing and chops cutting. The big boot Taker used to knock Michaels down is a nice touch looking at the big man showing his dominance over the smaller man.



The finish is excellent with Undertaker catching Michaels from a top rope Moonsault into the Tombstone Piledriver, 17 and 0! What an amazing match! I can truly say this is my favorite match ever and the greatest WrestleMania match of all time. This is the ultimate dream match I NEEDED to see and I am honored to have been in Reliant Stadium to witness it live.




My two favorite wrestlers Undertaker and Shawn Michaels put it ALL on the line and put so many people on an unbelievable thrill ride for over 30 minutes. This is what wrestling dreams are made of: two of the biggest wrestling legends showcasing an unforgettable all time classic! I could not ask for more as a wrestling fan.



Spoiler for War Of Wars:


TRIPLE H vs. THE UNDERTAKER

We have had some legendary and immortal moments created at WrestleMania. To me, Undertaker vs. Triple H WrestleMania 27 is an immortal moment but it is also poetically a very MORTAL moment for character known as The Undertaker. The match wasn’t just another WrestleMania spectacle, it is a storytelling masterpiece. The way they tied in the story arc of ending defiant legends like at past WrestleManias is remarkable to see unfold. This time HHH is the dominate one and Taker is the one being set up to be put down ala Ric Flair at WM24 and Shawn at WM26. Watching the finale of this match live, my mind and heart was racing because I FELT like this match was going to be the end of The Undertaker.

In this epic, Taker once again (as he did at 25 & 26) proved that when it comes to selling a match's brutality he is one of the best ever. Every year at WrestleMania when he does it people speculate whether he is seriously injured from the first big move. I feel this also further shows what a phenomenal worker he continues to be in spite of age and injuries. Not to mention he continues to bust out the suicide dive! I thought he’d never do that move again after the hip surgery in 2009. I also want to commend HHH for his dangerous bumps to outside of the ring and especially for that backdrop from the announce table to the floor.These men were throwing and taking bombs from the word go! I personally don't think more "in ring action" would have accomplished anything. Frankly, it would've been utterly pointless and taken away from the story of the match. Triple H wanted to end The Streak. He didn't have to prove he was a better wrestler, or work on a body part, or showboat like Shawn did. He already mentioned those were not his intensions in his promo before Mania. Throwing bombs is all he needed to do.

I thought the spots at ringside were perfectly timed from the start of the match because a) it showed how desperate HHH was to just get. it. done. b) Taker took such a huge beating early in the fight that it made the next 25 minutes of the match feel that much more dramatic. Taker had already been through a battle even though they'd only been going at it 5-10 minutes. c0 What does HHH want to mess around in the ring "wrestling" for when he can gore Taker through a glass wall or smash him through a table with a spinebuster?

Of course this big time showdown had many big spots and the match quality benefitted from it, but at the core they mostly worked off pure storytelling. This included included Undertaker once again with a breath-taking performance selling his pain and Triple H putting The Streak in grave jeopardy. It was a sickening sick to see Taker crumble to the mat after HHH's chair shot to the skull. Taker twitching his fingers after that made the match look more brutal. For those who complain about them selling too much lying on the mat, there is no reason they shouldn't have extensively sold that type of onslaught they had placed on each other.

I liked the Pedigrees being one right after the other too. Watch any other big Mania match when the finishers are executed in swift secession like Triple H did here and with that extra exclamation point as well (spike Pedigree), it makes those false finishes more exciting. They built the ‘sense of finality’ very well I thought. This told a far better story for the direction they were going for than "reversal out of reversal!" and "Trips does something/kick out/Taker does something/kick out" etc. Everything HHH dish out, Undertaker kicked out of. He refused to die and after each Pedigree it just continued to feel one step closer to the end of the Undertaker. If the kick outs had been spaced out over the course of the match I don't think the build to the finish would have had the right effect at all.

What I also loved was HHH’s character portrayal or journey that links back to the build before the match when Shawn said that HHH differed from him in the sense that “ Hunter could do things to other human beings and not feel the slightest bit of remorse.” However, moments after HHH battered Taker with the steel chair the story took a bit of a turn. When Taker was pulling himself up onto HHH almost in the exact manner that Michaels pulled himself up onto Taker at WM26, HHH looked down on Taker with the same look of confusion, pity and anger that Taker had for Shawn. That Shawn had for Ric. That was such an incredible callback moment. Before the match HHH said he would “die trying to end The Streak” but throughout this match it looked as if he was going to kill Taker in his attempts to “END IT.”

Then HHH came to a point where he seemingly was taking pity on this MAN. Hunter wanted to end The Streak but The Undertaker just will NOT let it go and "stay down." HHH eventually arrived at the internally frustrating realization that he might have to ANNIHILATE the MAN he respects more than any other. HHH played his role perfectly. This is his best character portrayal ever in my opinion. HHH went from having everything under his control, to being frustrated that Taker wouldn't stay down, to disturbed with himself for what he was doing, to straight up terrified by the amount of damage Taker was able to sustain. The absolute best matches usually involve top-notch storytelling and emotional character involvement, and I think those elements here are off the page. I look at this, the HBK/Taker matches and HBK/Flair as one big story arc. Each match drew off the one before it and developed the themes to perfection.



Then HHH signaled for THE END and hit Undertaker with THE TOMBSTONE!!! I think that's where this match went from great to legendary to me. In that moment I was convinced that things had come full circle and Taker was about to lose The Streak. It is arguably the best kick-out ever, on the same level as Taker/HBK from WM25. They got me to believe HHH would end the streak! If HHH was really going to put Undertaker down, the cut throat gesture and Tombstone would have been one hell of a way to do it.

Ultimately with Undertaker's determination to live, that sequence was the best way to further solidify The Streak as the most indestructible entity in wrestling and even though Undertaker was physically broken he was NOT DEFEATED.

The finish was just brilliant. Taker going for the last gasp Hell’s Gate shows how much The Streak means to him. Triple H had the sledgehammer prepared to go off on The Deadman’s head so this was Taker's last chance to win and it worked! The Hell’s Gate choke hold was the only way to finish it! I loved how his attempt to apply the hold was a real struggle for him just to get it locked in. It worked better than suddenly catching him in the move perfectly. They've also built up the Hell's Gate as a great finisher which ends a match when nothing else works. Very smart ending.

Some people (including me) have mentioned how they would have preferred it to end with an unconscious HHH passing out in Hell’s Gate. It certainly would have tied in with the ‘die trying’ line but because the story evolved during the match I don’t think it would have fit here. The whole story of the match was the reverse of HHH dying while trying to end The Streak, it was now the Undertaker dying while trying to keep it. HHH passing out would have taken away the significance Undertaker’s destroyed state at the end which was the main focus.

The message is that The Undertaker you fight on WrestleMania night isn't the same as the one who might fight at any other show. That is the intangible, mythical, and aura The Streak holds at WrestleMania. The Streak is where the power lies. Undertaker is now just the PHENOMenal mortal that defends it year after year … but for how much longer?

They blew the roof off of the Georgia Dome and produced an all-time classic. I respect The Undertaker more than any superstar/wrestler/performer/whatever McMahon wants to call them now. Year after year, Mark Calaway never ceases to amaze me but I feel the end is near because performances like this where he literally almost kills himself can’t continue. I don’t know what the future of The Streak is but if it ends with THE MAN, The Undertaker, being unable to maintain his death grip on it (thinking about this makes the Hell’s Gate finish more significant) then it would be a dramatic end of an era for The Last Outlaw and a WrestleMania legend.

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Old 11-04-2012, 11:34 PM   #8464 (permalink)
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Default Re: Official DVD/Match/Show Discussion Thread

WrestleMania 27. Ok now there is seriously a match I don't find the appeal in. Undertaker and Triple H achieved it at WrestleMania 28. 27, idk what it was but it simply felt off and that it tried way, way too hard to be a "classic" match.

I have it up there with Angle/Michaels WM 21 level overrated. But, 21 still gets the number one spot there.
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Old 11-05-2012, 05:08 AM   #8465 (permalink)
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Default Re: Official DVD/Match/Show Discussion Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yeah1993 View Post
Remember that day when I said I'd watch Michaels/Taker WM26 again the next day? Well I DID watch it, and......I don't get it. It's good, but that's about it. Don't see how it comes close to WM25 and I don't think that's a classic either. Hell I'd say Ground Zero blows away WM26.
Different strokes for different folks, but I'm the reverse tbh. For the life of me I'm not sure I'll ever 'get' WM25, watching it live I can easily imagine all the nearfalls and atmosphere being riveting and memorable, and in that regard anyone who was live at the time will almost certainly have my understanding for why they rate it so high. Watching it repeatedly over time afterwards though? It feels like a WWE style version of a Puro/Dream match formula. There's a few sloppy moments (not something I'd critique terribly, but in comparison to WM26 there are far more 'that wasn't pretty' moments) and generally overall I don't find the story delves much further from two iconic legends locking up, aside from the final few minutes where Michaels looks to be the most resilient challenger to the streak yet.

WM26? Well the spot where Taker's leg supposedly buckles and tweaks his knee always comes off as a super smart angle injected into the match and is really timed and executed in the most believeable fashion. The subsequent leg selling by Taker is better than anything I can recall in the 25 match minus the tombstone kickout and immediate Taker facial expression, and the way Michaels fakes out Taker to see if the injury is legitn as a callback spot to the year before where Michaels resorted to mind-game tactics to sneak an advantage really impressed me. Then the callback spots to Taker/Angle NWO 2006 and Michaels/Flair with HBK utilising the hells gate floatover counter and the inverted figure four submission he hadn't used since 2008..everything just advanced and progressed the story and Michaels put in arguably one of his stronger main event performances post comeback, although Taker was the clear better performer in my eyes.

The nearfalls weren't as dramatic early on, since people were conditioned to what it would reasonably take to end the match, but that's a minor quibble and honestly I didn't buy the first couple of finishers in the WM25 match. Aside from it being a staple of the WWE Main Event style, Taker's streak matches had had those big nearfalls since the Batista match at WM23. Even in the finishing stretch of 26 however, you've got Michaels becoming a near equivalent of what Flair had become 2 years prior: an aging wrestler slowly realising the certainty of his defeat but ultimately bowing down to a superior opponent rather than continue to wrestle a hopeless match. Even the closest thing to a botch in the match actually advances the story of Taker's injury, namely the moonsault through the table.

So aye, 25 probably has the better pacing and creates a more unique atmosphere being it was their first match together in 11 years, but in terms of story, selling and building the in ring action around a clear narrative, I find the 26 match to be far deeper and layered. In terms of a pretty woeful comparison, its the Vendetta Danielson/Strong whereas 25 feels like their first encounter (This Means War?).
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Old 11-05-2012, 05:59 AM   #8466 (permalink)
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Default Re: Official DVD/Match/Show Discussion Thread

What's the best Cena/Jericho match?
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Old 11-05-2012, 06:14 AM   #8467 (permalink)
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Default Re: Official DVD/Match/Show Discussion Thread

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Watching it repeatedly over time afterwards though? It feels like a WWE style version of a Puro/Dream match formula. There's a few sloppy moments (not something I'd critique terribly, but in comparison to WM26 there are far more 'that wasn't pretty' moments) and generally overall I don't find the story delves much further from two iconic legends locking up, aside from the final few minutes where Michaels looks to be the most resilient challenger to the streak yet.
The awful DDT reversal is the only thing that strikes me as the only sloppy thing in the match. Other than that it really felt the type of epic that WWE try to force down our throat and normally don't succeed at. I don't know why you'd consider the bold part a knock. Two iconic legends trading nearfalls in a really well done manner sounds pretty great on paper. I haven't watched it probably since 2010, but I sort of remember it being a poor man's Atlantis v Villano III (which is a good thing). WM26 was just a bunch of neat stuff happening and none of it is terribly memorable. I watched it paying close attention less than a week ago and remember almost nothing about it.

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WM26? Well the spot where Taker's leg supposedly buckles and tweaks his knee always comes off as a super smart angle injected into the match and is really timed and executed in the most believeable fashion. The subsequent leg selling by Taker is better than anything I can recall in the 25 match minus the tombstone kickout and immediate Taker facial expression, and the way Michaels fakes out Taker to see if the injury is legitn as a callback spot to the year before where Michaels resorted to mind-game tactics to sneak an advantage really impressed me. Then the callback spots to Taker/Angle NWO 2006 and Michaels/Flair with HBK utilising the hells gate floatover counter and the inverted figure four submission he hadn't used since 2008..everything just advanced and progressed the story and Michaels put in arguably one of his stronger main event performances post comeback, although Taker was the clear better performer in my eyes.
The call-backs were good stuff, yeah. And that's something and I can remember know that you mentioned it. Didn't really feel great to me, though, as opposed to just "hey this is cool." A call-back is fine, but if I'm finding what they're doing kinda boring then it'll mean almost nothing to me.

I agree Taker was better, and I'd say he was also clearly better at WM25.

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The nearfalls weren't as dramatic early on, since people were conditioned to what it would reasonably take to end the match, but that's a minor quibble and honestly I didn't buy the first couple of finishers in the WM25 match. Aside from it being a staple of the WWE Main Event style, Taker's streak matches had had those big nearfalls since the Batista match at WM23. Even in the finishing stretch of 26 however, you've got Michaels becoming a near equivalent of what Flair had become 2 years prior: an aging wrestler slowly realising the certainty of his defeat but ultimately bowing down to a superior opponent rather than continue to wrestle a hopeless match. Even the closest thing to a botch in the match actually advances the story of Taker's injury, namely the moonsault through the table.
I don't think I remember a single nearfall in the match. Michaels grasping onto Taker near the end is the kind of WWE-ish stuff I don't really care about. It's nice, but.....eh. At least Michaels' acting wasn't as hammy as it usually was post-injury.

I'd say Taker 'botching' (in 's b/c I don't think it counts as a botch) the dive to the outside advanced the WM25 way more than the moonsault advance WM26. Suicide dive means you're diving toward (metaphorical) suicide, and the risk doesn't always pay off. Taker landed HARD and was almost counted out.

Did Michaels follow up with the leg work at all at WM26? IDR. Seems like it was kind of thrown out.


I'm not even sure if WM25 would really hold up, but I can't imagine it not being as good as WM26. Needs a re-watch. OK no bullshit. I will watch both matches tomorrow and write long paragraphs about each. Dead serious.
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Old 11-05-2012, 06:45 AM   #8468 (permalink)
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Default Re: Official DVD/Match/Show Discussion Thread

This fucking match! MVP 's best effort ever in WWE. You gotta watch this, everyone.



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Old 11-05-2012, 07:04 AM   #8469 (permalink)
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Default Re: Official DVD/Match/Show Discussion Thread

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The awful DDT reversal is the only thing that strikes me as the only sloppy thing in the match. Other than that it really felt the type of epic that WWE try to force down our throat and normally don't succeed at. I don't know why you'd consider the bold part a knock. Two iconic legends trading nearfalls in a really well done manner sounds pretty great on paper. I haven't watched it probably since 2010, but I sort of remember it being a poor man's Atlantis v Villano III (which is a good thing). WM26 was just a bunch of neat stuff happening and none of it is terribly memorable. I watched it paying close attention less than a week ago and remember almost nothing about it.
I recall Michaels' 'moonsault' to the floor which sets up the Taker suicide dive looking a little sloppy, to the point where it looked more like an inverted crossbody by the end. Like I mentioned, I'm not one to really get up in arms over the odd mistimed spot, but it was something I figured I'd mention as to why I generally prefer the ringwork here than in the 25 match.

@ the bold part: poor phrasing on my part. I enjoyed the actual story, I just meant that in comparison to WM 26, I think the 26 match still has that Taker/Michaels atmosphere (albeit not as grand compared to the year before), but the overall story, selling and callback spots add an extra dimension to the story. 25 to me as a match isn't as layered in story and selling, which was more my aim rather than knocking the actual story. 26 just feels like a more developed match on top of the Michaels/Taker dynamic. Like the better Misawa/Kawada matches in the early-mid 90s compared to some of their matches near the end of the decade, if you get what I mean.



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The call-backs were good stuff, yeah. And that's something and I can remember know that you mentioned it. Didn't really feel great to me, though, as opposed to just "hey this is cool." A call-back is fine, but if I'm finding what they're doing kinda boring then it'll mean almost nothing to me.

I agree Taker was better, and I'd say he was also clearly better at WM25.
Fair enough, that's perfectly understandable. I guess maybe because I'd come to not expect such layered storytelling and 'smarter' work in the majority of Shawn's post comeback run, that maybe getting this sort of storytelling makes me appreicate it more? I dunno, but it sticks out to me as WWE nailing a better balance between overt storytelling without beating it into the viewer's heads to the point where it becomes a nuisance and detracts from the match: i.e Taker/HHH HIAC with the HHH/HBK monologue and Shawn's dire acting after the SCM-Pedigree kickout.



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I don't think I remember a single nearfall in the match. Michaels grasping onto Taker near the end is the kind of WWE-ish stuff I don't really care about. It's nice, but.....eh. At least Michaels' acting wasn't as hammy as it usually was post-injury.

I'd say Taker 'botching' (in 's b/c I don't think it counts as a botch) the dive to the outside advanced the WM25 way more than the moonsault advance WM26. Suicide dive means you're diving toward (metaphorical) suicide, and the risk doesn't always pay off. Taker landed HARD and was almost counted out.

Did Michaels follow up with the leg work at all at WM26? IDR. Seems like it was kind of thrown out.


I'm not even sure if WM25 would really hold up, but I can't imagine it not being as good as WM26. Needs a re-watch. OK no bullshit. I will watch both matches tomorrow and write long paragraphs about each. Dead serious.
Again, that's understandable and something I can easily buy as being a little too cute. To me I think the work before as well as Michaels not being as hammy makes it less irritable and melodramatic, though I can appreciate with how WWE and Michaels work these sort of matches, the risk of some hammy convulted ending to the story is always possible. I find the balance in terms of completing the in-ring story without being too over the top is better achieved than what we got at WM 28, but again these sorts of moments and visuals are always going to resonate differently from person to person.

The suicide dive spot really did add an extra dimension to the WM25 match, namely because Taker looked legit fucked on the landing and it wasn't clear how they were going to continue the match with him in a seemingly fragile condition. That being said, I don't think anyone expected Michaels to win at WM25 (not saying he was a favourite at 26 either, but at least the idea of a rematch may have worked a few people into thinking there was a slightly better chance), and without trying to be too harsh I do think that lessens the impact the suicide dive spot has on the match. Like, if you have the same spot at WM26, where people may be conditioned into giving Michaels a slightly better chance..then I think the drama increases a lot. Whereas with WM25 it always comes off as a spot which does admittedly add drama to the match, but the feeling that Michaels was never going to win just sort of handicaps the amount of drama it can evoke. This is probably another scenario of me and you seeing the sequence differently, although off memory once Taker sort of recuperates I don't recall him looking as 'troubled' in the finishing stretch. Admittedly post impact and for a minute or two afterwards there is a real sense of shock that he may be done, but I don't find that carries through to the end of the match (a rewatch might put this better in perspective though).

As for the leg-work, I thought Michaels went as far as he could with it. He exploited it and worked it over and targeted it with his best submission in the hopes of securing the win, but as it became obvious Taker wouldn't submit he resorted to the SCM which had always been his trump card. I felt they made it central to Taker looking vulnerable and giving Michaels the best chance yet to end the streak, but it always felt more like a means to controlling the match rather than how Michaels would ultimately win.
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Old 11-05-2012, 07:07 AM   #8470 (permalink)
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Default Re: Official DVD/Match/Show Discussion Thread

I don't remember much about Punk/Henry tbh other than Jericho smashing the bottle over Punk's head about 2 ft in front of me. Oh, the joys of watching live in the arena lol.
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