Over The Limit 2012

Michael realized that it made little sense for me to review most of the WWE TV shows and do TNA PPVs and vice versa, so we’ve swapped PPVs.  I’ll be doing WWE PPVs from now on and he’ll be doing TNA’s.

Over The Limit 2012
Date: May 20, 2012
Location: PNC Arena, Raleigh, North Carolina
Commentators: Michael Cole, Booker T, Jerry Lawler

Reviewed by Tommy Hall

Well we have to get this one over with I guess. This is the least
interesting and probably least built up show I can remember in years. As
of 5:05 PM on the day of the show, we have five matches scheduled for
the show, not counting the pre-show match. There are bound to be some
matches added, which have to help this show. This is one of the PPVs I’m
going into with zero expectations which usually helps a show a lot.
That being said, I’m not sure if it works if you plan that way in
advance. Let’s get to it.

Apparently there’s been a battle royal added to the show and the
winner gets to pick the IC or US Title to challenge for tonight. That’ll
help a lot.

Pre-Show: Kane vs. Zack Ryder

Ryder is taken into the corner but shoves Kane away and shouts that
he’s not afraid. WHY DID HE NEVER FREAKING DO THAT WHEN HE WAS US
CHAMPION THEN??? Ryder gets him to chase him and hits a kind of baseball
slide. I really like the set as it looks like a speedometer much like
the videos have looked. A suicide dive puts Kane down as he keeps
looking for a countout.

Back in and Ryder pounds away but it’s short lived as Kane knocks him
down and starts using the power. Clothesline gets two. Off to a bearhug
which doesn’t last long. Seated dropkick gets two and it’s off to a
body vice. Ryder fights out of it with elbows and hits a quick
neckbreaker for two. He snaps Kane’s throat on the top rope but as he
goes up, Kane hits an uppercut. Kane charges into the corner knees but
the Rough Ryder is countered and a side slam gets two. Ryder comes back
again and hits the Broski Boot for one. He loads up the Rough Ryder but
charges into the chokeslam for the pin at 6:47.

Rating: C+. No complaints here but again, WHERE WAS
THIS RYDER IN JANUARY??? That’s my big issue with Ryder’s destruction by
Kane back then: he didn’t even fight. They spent a month and a half
building him as this newly confident guy and then he turned into a
coward that would rather change a tire than USE THE WRENCH HE WAS
HOLDING to fight Kane. Ryder went straight at Kane here and lost, which
would have annoyed me back then but I could have lived with it. The
match was fine.

Battle Royal

The battle royal is on the pre-show too? Dang I was about to turn it
off too. We have Miz, Khali, JTG, Ezekiel Jackson, Tyler Reks, Curt
Hawkins, Michael McGillicutty, Yoshi Tatsu, Tyson Kidd, Jimmy Uso, Jey
Uso, Jinder Mahal, Drew McIntyre, Heath Slater, Titus O’Neil, Darren
Young, Alex Riley, David Otunga, William Regal (BIG chant), and
Christian.

This is going to be on the PPV which is good. The winner can pick the
US Title or IC Title to challenge for later tonight. There are 20 men
in all. This is a cool idea to start the show with. No opening video
either. They start with the usual punching and kicking until Khali
throws Slater out. There goes McGillicutty by the same man. The Usos hit
a double superkick to put JTG out, making me love them even more.

Drew suplexes Yoshi out and he lands BAD on his ankle. If he’s not
hurt it’ll be a miracle. Reks and Hawkins put Jackson out just before
Darren Young puts an Uso out. Someone puts McIntyre out. I’m sorry for
all of the “so and so is out” but there’s not much else you can say
until a lot of the guys are gone. Khali puts out Hawkins and Reks and
does the same to Mahal. I think there are ten left.

Regal tries to put Kidd out but gets caught in a chokeout. Miz, Young
and O’Neil team up to put Khali out. That more or less leaves Miz,
Christian and maybe Otunga as the only likely winners. Jackson misses a
charge and the remaining Uso kicks him out. Young and let’s say Jey go
to the apron and Young knocks him out. Ok we have Miz, Young, Kidd,
Regal (out as I type his name, drawing HUGE boos), Christian, Kidd and
Otunga. Riley dropkicks Young out to get it to five.

Riley hits a spinebuster on Miz but gets sent to the apron. He goes
up top but Miz guillotines him to get it to four. It’s Christian, Miz,
Kidd and Otunga. Otunga sends Christian’s shoulder into the post as Kidd
kicks Miz. I think Christian is a face here. Kidd gets sent to the
apron but hits a springboard missile dropkick to knock Miz and Otunga
down. Kidd goes to the apron and tries to headscissor Kidd out, but
Otunga dumps Tyson.

Otunga and Miz team up against Christian for a double beating but the
corner clothesline misses. Christian dumps Otunga and has to hang on
from a sneak attack by Miz. The Finale is countered and Christian is
thrown to the apron. Miz chokes him on the apron with a boot but
Christian kicks him away. From the apron, Christian throws Miz to the
apron as well and a shoulder to the ribs gives the Canadian the win at
12:36.

Rating: C. This was a better battle royal than I’m
used to. Christian returning and winning was a nice surprise as he seems
to have turned face again. I like him better in that role so seeing him
getting a push as a good guy should be a nice change of pace. Fun match
here which was a nice surprise.

Christian picks Santino in a surprising move.

Now we get the opening video, which is about change and people power.

Vickie suggests she’ll be the new GM if Ace loses.

Tag Titles: Jack Swagger/Dolph Ziggler vs. R-Truth/Kofi Kingston

Kofi and Swagger get us going. Jack takes it to the mat but opts for a
standing top wristlock instead. Not much happens so it’s off to Truth
for a double hiptoss. Spinning legdrop gets two. Ziggler comes in but
Kofi gets a blind tag and a springboard missile dropkick for two.
Swagger gets in a shot from the apron and a tag to take over. He works
on the arm some more and it’s off to Truth who speeds things up.

Vickie distracts the referee which results in Dolph getting his head
kicked off. Swagger puts Truth down and hits the Vader Bomb for two.
Ziggler comes back in with a Crossface of all things as King is talking
about Vickie’s navel. Cole: “If you two were as good at commentating as
you were at looking at Vickie you’d be in the Hall of Fame.” King: “I
already am.” That was funny for some reason.

Swagger takes Truth down but Truth comes back with a flurry of
punches. They don’t get him anywhere as Ziggler comes in for a double
team, getting two. Dolph does the handstands on the chinlock which is
impressive. Back to Jack who takes Truth into the corner but gets caught
by a tornado DDT to put both guys down. Double tag brings in Kofi and
Dolph and an SOS gets two. Springboard cross body gets two as Jack makes
the save. As Kofi is coming back in he gets caught by a Fameasser for
two. Truth dives onto Swagger and Dolph jumps with a Stinger Splash,
right into Trouble in Paradise to retain at 12:28.

Rating: B. That’s probably high but I was enjoying
this match. Kofi and Dolph have some awesome chemistry together and it
worked very well here. They’re clearly building to a big rematch with
the Colons, if you can call that big of course. Pretty good match here
and I was really liking it by the end.

Eve tells Hawkins and Reks to go into the crowd and confiscate all
anti-Laurinitis signs. Otunga says this is legally ok. There has to be a
rib here somewhere.

Divas Title: Layla vs. Beth Phoenix

Layla is defending. She grabs a headlock to start but Beth powers her
down. The fans want Kharma. Layla takes her back down and pounds away,
including an elbow into a charging Beth. Beth counters a rana (I think)
out of the corner into a powerbomb to work on the knee. She wraps it
around the post and slams her down for two.

There’s a half crab and a tap chant. Layla comes back with a rolling
cradle for two. This is a really boring match. After a quick bit on the
apron, the Glam Slam is countered into a kind of DDT for two. Another
attempt is countered into a rollup for two but Beth counters into one of
her own with tights for two. Beth takes the knee out again but walks
into the Layout for the pin at 7:13.

Rating: D. I usually don’t like Divas matches but
this one was especially boring. The Kharma chants just kept reminding me
that they’re keeping the belt warm for her. Layla and Beth are both
good looking, but for the life of me I have no desire to watch them have
a wrestling match. The ending was better than the rest of the match.

We go to Orton and see a clip of him hitting the RKO after losing to
Sheamus. He says Sheamus would have done the same to him. Jericho comes
up and says he enjoyed the match on Smackdown with the two of them
beating on each other. He says he’ll win, but Orton says that Jericho
will only be the best in the world at losing to him.

Smackdown World Title: Alberto Del Rio vs. Sheamus vs. Chris Jericho vs. Randy Orton

I’ve been looking forward to this. During the big match intros, the
announcers talk about how he has a 25% chance of winning. Wouldn’t they
always have at best a 50% chance? Anyway Jericho goes after Orton and
Del Rio jumps Sheamus. The good guys almost have a rematch from Friday
but the heels jump them again. Del Rio and Jericho are knocked to the
floor and it’s rematch time.

Sheamus takes over but gets pulled to the floor by Jericho and thrown
into the barricade. Del Rio jumps Orton and works on the arm. The fans
chant SI as Del Rio and Jericho have a brief alliance. Alberto heads to
the floor and works on Sheamus’ arm, sending him into the table. In the
ring Orton suplexes Jericho and stomps him for two. The heels team up
again but once Jericho goes for a cover it’s time to fight.

Orton comes back to clothesline Del Rio to the floor and it’s Randy
vs. Jericho for a bit. Enziguri gets two for the Canadian. Sheamus has
apparently stopped living as he’s been gone for about three minutes now.
Cole talks about Raw going three hours as Orton loads up a superplex.
Del Rio makes the save for some reason and Orton goes to the floor with
Jericho. Sheamus comes back with the top rope shoulder and some knees to
Del Rio in the corner.

Regal Roll puts Del Rio down again and Sheamus shouts BROGUE. Del Rio
blocks it with an enziguri for two. Into the corner and Sheamus fires
off a bunch of elbows to Del Rio’s head. That corner has been a bad
place for him so far. Powerslam gets two. The periods of guys laying on
the floor is a lot longer tonight. Del Rio takes out the knee and a
dropkick to Sheamus while the champ is on his knees gets two.

Del Rio misses a charging kick and gets caught in position for the
ten forearms. Jericho pops up with a shot to the back, sending Del Rio
and Sheamus to the floor and onto Ricardo. Orton comes back in with the
powerslams to Jericho and an elevated DDT to the champion. Cross
armbreaker beaks up the RKO but Jericho saves Randy. Lionsault gets
knees from Del Rio but Orton hits the backbreaker on Jericho. Irish
Curse puts Del Rio down but Orton tries the RKO. Sheamus escapes and
misses the Kick but he counters the RKO into a rollup like Friday for
two. Orton sends him into the post and out to the floor. Great sequence.

Double DDT takes out Del Rio and Ricardo but Del Rio sends Orton to
the floor. Cross armbreaker to Jericho is counters into the Walls
(SWEET) but Sheamus comes in to break it up. Jericho ducks the Kick and
hits the Codebreaker for two. Cole picks NOW to plug WWE.com. ARE YOU
KIDDING ME? Jericho hits his finisher so TIME TO PLUG THE WEBSITE!!!
Regal Roll is countered into the Walls but Randy RKOs him. Del Rio saves
that and takes one of his own. Brogue Kick takes down Orton (great
selling) and Jericho rolls Sheamus up with tights for two. I thought
that was it. White Noise to Jericho retains at 16:00.

Rating: A. That’s probably high but I really dug
this. It was the match I’ve been looking forward to the most all night
and it certainly didn’t disappoint. Those finisher parades were great
and I was really wondering who was going to get the win, which is the
best thing a match can do. Thank goodness they went with this instead of
Sheamus vs. Del Rio. I really liked this.

Cody and Eve talk in the back and Rhodes is glad the IC Title is
getting legitimized tonight. He says he would have embarrassed Christian
tonight and guess who is behind him. Christian changes his mind and is
challenging Cody tonight. That’s an intriguing feud if they let Cody be
himself.

Here’s Miz for a match but he has a mic first. He also has the coat
back which is an upgrade. Miz says that the fans should be praising his
existence. Everything that is wrong with the WWE can be summed up in two
words: Brodus Clay. Miz says he’s a better dancer and shows off a
little bit. Brodus does his stuff and looks like a pumpkin with orange
and black this week.

Brodus Clay vs. The Miz

This isn’t a dance off thank goodness. Miz gets shoved into the
corner and has his forearms shrugged off. Brodus rams Miz into the
corner and hits a suplex. Miz tries to go up top but gets heabutted
down. Miz sends Clay into the post on the floor. Back in a pair of top
rope ax handles put Brodus down to his knee. Boot to the head gets two
and it’s off to a chinlock. Brodus gets up and runs him over, then hits
his overhead suplex from the middle rope. Splash ends this at 4:13.

Rating: D+. This was your usual Brodus match. The
problem with him at the end of the day is there’s really nothing you can
do with him at this stage. He’s squashing bigger names now and the
dancing with kids (going on right now) is a nice touch, but they need to
give him some adversity or something at all to do so he can move up
without things looking silly.

Reks and Hawkins are stealing signs.

Cody complains about the fans being happy with him having to defend
the title tonight. He talks about his dad not letting him come to any
shows in North Carolina as a kid, and now he knows it’s because he’s
better than everyone else. Tonight he’ll prove that he’s better than
Christian. I’m liking these short pre-match promos. They add a little
something to them.

Intercontinental Title: Christian vs. Cody Rhodes

Christian throws him to the floor to start and Cody is frustrated.
Cody comes back in with a Russian legsweep for two and we hit the
armbar/neckcrank. Christian gets up but gets dropkicked in the back of
his head for two. Cody works him over in the corner and we head outside.
The champ climbs the steps like he’s setting for the Disaster Kick but
hits a dropkick instead.

Back inside and Cody jumps into a punch to the ribs. Pendulum Kick
sets up a middle rope missile dropkick for two. The crowd has gone dead
after the foruway. Killswitch is broken up but Christian pops him in the
face to keep momentum. Top rope dropkick misses and Cody rolls him up
for two. Tornado DDT is countered and Christian stands there for the
moonsault press (looked really stupid) for two. Cody yells at the fans
about being tired of being jerked around and walks into the Killswitch
to give us a new champion at 7:28.

Rating: C-. The match was pretty dull but I’m very
pleased with this change. Cody being depushed like he was made the title
look horrible and getting it off Rhodes was the best thing they could
do. Christian is a steady hand and you know you’re going to get passable
matches out of him at worst. Also having him as a face is a plus to me.
Boring match, good result.

We go to Punk in the back and see a clip from the end of the Punk vs.
Kane match with Bryan getting Punk a beating by Kane. Punk is happy
that tonight Ace will be out of a job. First up though is Daniel Bryan
who he’s known for ten years. Ten years ago, if you had told Vince that
these two would be fighting for the WWE Title on a WWE PPV, you would
hear him ask who they both were (complete with a funny Vince imitation).
Bryan is a changed man and those changes have gotten on his bad side.
Tonight won’t just be a five star classic, but it’ll be…..and here’s AJ
who says this is going to be fun. She wishes Punk luck.

Raw World Title: Daniel Bryan vs. CM Punk

Cole again plugs WWE.com which has an article about their history.
You know, because Cole can’t TELL US THOSE THINGS. Feeling out process
to start and Punk takes him into the corner and kicks at the leg. The
fans seem totally split. A quick headlock goes nowhere so Punk works on
the knee some more.

Modified Indian Deathlock goes on from the champ but
Bryan gets on top of him and fires off forearms.

Punk weathers that and hits a curb stomp of all things for two. He
sends Bryan to the floor but Bryan is ready for him and sends Punk back
first into the barricade. The bad ribs are draped over the barricade and Bryan takes over. Back in a top rope missile dropkick (with knee
selling) gets two. Bryan hooks a seated abdominal stretch with some
elbows to the ribs. Knee drop gets one.

Punk tries a Figure Four out of nowhere (complete with WOO chants.
We’re in North Carolina remember) but Bryan rolls him up for two.
There’s a surfboard (complete with YES each time he rocks back) which is
always cool to me. Bryan keeps Punk’s legs in the air and bends his
face down into a dragon sleeper at the same time. FREAKING OW MAN! Off
to a regular dragon sleeper but Punk comes back with forearms of his
own. That’s some nice storytelling as they’ve mirrored each other
completely, even down to the counter into mounted forearms, for the
first ten minutes.

Bryan hits a hard running knee drop to the back to keep Punk down.
Another misses and Punk gets a Perfectplex for two. Bryan suplexes him
down and hits a swan dive headbutt for two. Off to a chinlock with a
knee in the back of the champ. Punk gets up and they both hit cross
bodies to put both guys down. Back up and Punk fires off forearms and
hits the neckbreaker.

Punk tries the corner clothesline but gets kicked in the face.
Powerslam gets two for the champ. Bryan escapes a suplex but Punk
backdrops him to the floor. Suicide dive takes Daniel down but he hits a
dropkick to counter the springboard clothesline for two. Bryan fires
off the kicks but the last one is caught in a dragon screw leg whip.
Figure Four goes on and the fans get fired up again.

With the hold on they slap it out but Punk doesn’t let go of the
hold. Bryan makes the rope and Booker shouts that he has til five. Knee
crusher is countered into a sunset flip for two. Punk’s rollup gets the
same. Bryan tries something with the arm but Punk pulls away. Bryan is
cool with that and kicks Punk’s head off for two. They go to the corner
and Punk crotches Bryan on the top.

With Bryan sitting on the ropes, Punk hits the springboard
clothesline for two. We’re at almost twenty minutes now and they’re
showing no signs of ending soon. The fans think this is awesome. I can’t
remember the last time I’ve heard that at a WWE show. They trade
forearms from their knees and Punk takes over with his strikes. GTS is
countered into a rollup for two.

YES Lock is countered into a slingshot to send Bryan to the apron. He
skins the cat but walks into a high kick for two. Bryan put his foot on
the rope so Punk hooks it for another two. I like that. Macho Elbow
hits but the ribs are too hurt to cover. A Randy Savage chant starts up
as Punk gets two. Bryan goes off, firing knees into the ribs. He charges
but the running dropkick misses.

Running knee hits but the bulldog is countered into the YES Lock in
the middle of the ring. Bryan pulls too hard and Punk falls on top for
the pin at 24:04. He was tapping at the same time though so there’s your
rematch at No Way Out. I think the pin stands though. Replay shows that
the three count was clearly done before Punk tapped and the announcers
acknowledged it.

Rating: A. Yep it was great. This whole show has
been great but unfortunately these two are going to get blamed when the
show tanks because no one wants to see Ace in the ring because no one
cares about him. Anyway, the match was great and I have no complaints
about it at all. The crowd reaction was great too, which is something
you don’t get anymore in WWE so that’s a good sign too.

Yeah another replay shows that the referee was almost up to his feet
saying ring the bell before Punk tapped. It’s not even close.

Eve and Otunga are in the back and run into Teddy. He’s happy because if Ace loses, the two of them might get fired.

Camacho vs. Ryback

Lillian says that it’s Hunico but it’s Camacho. Good reaction for
Ryback who has Nexus like R bands on his arm. What do you expect here?
We get Goldberg chants, some offense from Camacho, spinebuster, a
powerbomb and the MuscleBuster for the pin at 1:52.

We recap the main event. Ace calls it People Power, naturally he’s
corrupt boss #8000 and brings in Lesnar to be his big machine, only to
have Lesnar lose to Cena in his first match. This leads to Ace vs. Cena
and if Cena wins, Ace is fired. Oh and if any wrestler interferes, he’s
fired. Did I mention Big Show was fired on Monday?

John Cena vs. John Laurinatis

We hear about some All Japan titles and I quote, “one of the greatest
tag teams of all times in the Dynamic Dudes.” For those of you
unfamiliar, NO. Just NO. Ace is in a full body black suit which is
skin tight. I think it’s Under Armour. Just to be clear: The Rock,
Brock Lesnar, Johnny Ace. Also for the sake of this, if I use the name
John, I will only be referring to Cena. You can only win by pin or
submission and if Ace loses he’s fired.

Ace immediately runs to the crowd but Cena catches him. He rips the
Armour up and hits a loud chop to the chest and the back. LONG airplane
spin puts Ace on the floor and Cena rings the bell next to his ear.
Cena puts Ace in Cole’s chair and puts a headset on him. He grabs a mic
and says he’ll be Booker while Ace is Cole. Cena’s imitations of both
guys are pretty good and Ace says FIVE TIME while half unconscious. Ace
has had no offense at all.

Back into the ring and Ace begs for mercy. He extends a hand which
gets him slammed. Cena grabs a mic and says he has an idea. He says
he’s about to put Ace in the STF and if Ace taps, he’s fired. If Ace
can last ten seconds, Cena will let go and in the name of PEOPLE POWER,
the fans can keep time. Cena lets go at ten and says the good news is
that Ace survived. The bad news is he’s going to do it again. Cena
isn’t cranking on it at all.

John goes to the floor and gets some water. He thinks Ace needs some
water too so he gets three bottles and pours them over Ace. One of
them go down Ace’s pants. Now it’s time for a fire extinguisher. Ace
begs for mercy so Cena only sprays him a bit. It’s been hot around here
so that doesn’t sound half bad right now. Cena sprays him for about
fifteen seconds and Ace looks like a snowman. This is hilarious so far.

Cena finds a trashcan which is full of popcorn and drinks. Well at
least it washes the foam off. Ace gets into the crowd as Cena is
looking for more stuff but Cena catches him. Ace gets in a shot to the
bad arm and Cena is in some trouble. The arm goes into the table as
Cole is losing his mind. It goes into the steps and Ace grabs a chair.
Naturally, he hits Cena in the ribs instead of the arm but at least
he’s trying. A few shots to the back get two.

Cena blocks a chair shot to the head and trips Ace’s legs with it.
Instead of the Shuffle, Cena drives the chair into Ace’s face. He picks
Ace up but takes a low blow to put him back down again. Ace goes into
the crowd again and slowly crawls up the aisle. He gets past the floor
seats and Cena is still in the ring. Ace gets out of the arena and the
referee isn’t sure what to do.

And here it is. Big Show pops up with Ace by his throat and drags
him back to the ring. He throws Ace back in (with a beer gut the size
of your local luchador) and Cena is ready. Ace begs off some more so
Show stands on his hand. Cena puts him in the AA and of course Show
punches him to the shock of no one. Ace gets the pin at 17:08.

Rating: C. The match was a comedy match until the
end. I’ll go with a rating in the middle because I enjoyed the big
beating but when you know the ending, it’s like watching a movie for the
second time. Everyone who has watched more than five minutes of
wrestling could tell you what was going to happen there and it’s nothing
most people seem interested in from what I’ve read.

Everyone is SHOCKED to end the show. SHOCKED I SAY!

Overall Rating: B+. You know I was LOVING this show
before the ending. There were two great matches here, but the ending is
the same stuff that has made ratings fall week after week but this is
what has been chosen and that’s what we’re going to get. It’ll be Cena
vs. Show over the summer and Lesnar vs. lawyers or whatever and
Punk/Bryan/Sheamus will be blamed when people stop watching because
their 10 minutes a week are the problem, not the 30 minutes the other
stuff gets. Great show with a bad ending though.

Results

Christian won a battle royal, last eliminating The Miz
Kofi Kingston/R-Truth b. Dolph Ziggler/Jack Swagger – Trouble in Paradise to Ziggler
Layla b. Beth Phoenix – Layout
Sheamus b. Alberto Del Rio, Chris Jericho and Randy Orton – White Noise to Jericho
Brodus Clay b. The Miz – Splash
Christian b. Cody Rhodes – Killswitch
CM Punk b. Daniel Bryan – Rollup
Ryback b. Camacho – MuscleBuster
John Laurinaitis b. John Cena – Pin after WMD from Big Show

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