It’s a Double Main Event tonight as we get The Big Show vs. Rob Van Dam plus The Sandman vs. Matt Striker in a Singapore Cane On A Pole Match.
The Cane match is opening the show so you know it’s a big deal. It’s like Wrestlemania X.
The Sandman vs. Matt Striker (Singapore Cane On A Pole)
As Sandman makes his entrance and soaks some kids with beer, Joey Styles tells us Sandman is almost unrecognisable without his cane. I’m pretty sure there’s not many people who look like the Sandman and if there is, they’re probably dead now.
One good thing the show has started doing: recapping previous matches and feuds explaining the backstory. Shame that feud is Sandman vs. Striker but still.
Striker has ”he is a former social studies teacher” as part of his ring introductions so Joey can rant about how he’s an evil DISGRACED teacher because he was training to be a wrestler rather than stick with a career with a union. Striker and his banana hammock try to climb the pole immediately but Sandman pulls him off so Striker works on his leg. Mild ”You Can’t Wrestle” chant breaks out, hard to tell who it’s aimed at. Striker continues to pound the leg but Sandman has enough False Courage in him to try climbing the pole so Striker tosses him off. Striker scurries up and grabs the cane in about three seconds without popping out of his tights. Sandman shrugs off a cane shot to seize the cane out of Striker’s hands and he twats him a few times. Striker sees he’s bleeding and buggers off to the back for the…count-out. Oh.
Winner: The Sandman (For the first minute, this looked like it was going to be decent but it was over as soon it started and the cane didn’t look like much of a reward for scurrying. Good to know you can lose via count-out in a Pole Match though.
CM Punk vs. René Duprée
You know it’s going to be a good opponent when the match is announced before the break as ”CM PUNK IN ACTION, NEXT!” This is a rematch from a few weeks ago and that’s all the interesting things I have to type about Duprée. He tries to suckerpunch Punk but gets kicked instead. Big flying elbow by René as Joey tries to hype his physique, Taz shuts him down with ”yeah but it’s not bodybuilding, stop talking about bodies.” Crowd chants ”U-S-A” which inspires Punk enough to recover from Duprée’s not-worth-typing offence to hit some kicks and lock in the Anaconda Vice for the submission win.
Winner: CM Punk (Punk’s so cool compared to the rest of the show. He’s got the flash moves, the scene-kid look and he’s not a vampire or a disgraced teacher. So far he’s beaten people with different variations of his Moves of Doom so he has the Kurt Angle-esque ”match can end in different ways” positive going for him too.)
Mike Knox tries to attack Punk afterwards but Punk somehow spots a large, hairy shite wrestler coming at him so Knox panics and runs away. Not even Knox’s parents would watch him on this show.
Rebecca DiPietro makes her debut as a backstage interviewer, she was one of the losers in the 2006 WWE Diva Search. Got to love WWE hiring nearly all the contestants in the Diva Searches and only having plans for some of them so the rest filled the backstage areas like a Russ Meyer film. Here’s a screenshot:
She has that brain-dead nasal voice you only seem to hear from models and Nicole Bass. And oh my god is she bad at talking, she asks Rob Van Dam about the previous Big Show match and it’s ”contreivishial” finish. RVD is humble and calls himself the best thing in ECW and he knows how to slay the dragon. Aye, a ton of pot brownies. That would have been a hell of an episode, RVD cooks a load of them, puts them outside Show’s door, waits a second then thinks ”ah fuck it” and eats them himself. RVD is of course unaffected. Back to reality, RVD is worse than Rebecca and doesn’t make it clear if the match tonight is for a title shot or for the title or what. But something something point-at-self.
Test is here to talk, looking so pink you would have thought he’d just poured boiling water over himself. Test calls himself The Impact Player of ECW. ”Impact Player” must translate as ”what Hollywood thought gay guys looked like in the eighties.” Test recaps the Holly vs. RVD match, Holly’s subsequent turn on Heyman and explains why he had to hit him with a chair in his wound. Test is ready for Holly next week when he returns. Test sounded like he would have been fine talking normally but as soon as he had to get those scripted lines out about being a ruthless Impact Player, it sucked.
Balls Mahoney interrupts and wants a match but Test says no. Weird, he usually says ”yes.”
Balls Mahoney vs. Test
Our first dead guy vs. dead guy match. Only wrestling reminds you of your mortality every time you watch it. Test hurls Balls into the ring post as the ”Steroids” chants breaks out. I’m surprised Test didn’t shout ”where?!” like Buzz Lightyear. After forty seconds of action, Test puts Balls in a chinlock. Test gives Balls’ arm a stunner. I’m sure there’s a better name for that move, but I’m not wasting a Google on this fucking match. Balls uses his stunnered-arm to clothesline Test a few times and hit the Balls punches. Sky High gets two but Test The Impact Player big boots Balls and pins him after the TKO-looking move with no name.
Winner: ImpacTest The Impact Player (Test’s mild run of not-being-crap come to an end. Not just because of a meh match with Balls, but that promo made him sound like a pink robot WWE taught how to talk. And Tazz’s instance on getting Impact and Impact Player on commentary was cringey. I know why WWE likes to brand everything but there’s got to be some subtly and natural-feeling to it, you can’t have Test come out and go I AM A BIG IMPACT a few hundred times and expect all the cool kids to go out and buy IMPACT shirts.
Shannon Moore is in the ring but the commentators don’t mention him, instead talking about the Cyber Sunday World Champions match between John Cena vs. Booker T vs. The Big Show. Well they found one thing less important than Moore to talk about.
Sabu vs. Shannon Moore
December To Dismember is mentioned for the first time, tickets are on sale now. Fuck, Lashley’s not even made his debut yet. When did they start to decide to build matches for that PPV? Right now you’d think Sabu or RVD vs. The Big Show, Balls Mahoney vs. Kevin Thorn, Punk vs. Knox and The Sandman vs. Striker in some wacky School Death Match. None of those happened. But anyway let’s watch Moore get squashed. Sabu springboards a few times and dives out of the ring onto Moore’s mohawk. Moore comes back with a springboard moonsault for two but Sabu thinks ”why am I bothering, it’s not No DQ”, dodges a Tumbleweed and pins Moore after a slingshot legdrop.
Winner: Sabu (Quick squash to kill time. They hyped Moore for weeks, by the week.)
Oh no back to Rebecca who is interviewing The Big Show. Microsoft Sam is more articulate than Rebecca. Show talks about throwing Cena & Booker around on Raw and Smackdown. Well I’ll take your word for it, they haven’t shown any clips. Show at least clarifies it’s non-title tonight but if RVD wins, Show will give him a title shot later on.
The Big Show vs. Rob Van Dam
Cyber Sunday’s two weeks away but because of the weird build, there’s not much Show can do other than go ”yeah I’m going to win another title but only if people don’t vote for my title to be on the line” and those people are going ”who gives a fuck, no title’s changing hands” and none did and those people were right. This was the same period that had Cena lose to K-Fed so I guess it could be worse for ECW. What’s the ECW 2006 equivalent for K-Fed? Crazy Frog? As RVD makes his entrance, I need to point out every time Joey Styles refers to the previous Show vs. RVD match he calls it ”the now-infamous South Philly screwjob.” Even only after a week, he was calling it ”now-infamous.” I needed to get that off my chest.
RVD taunts in front of Show and seems confused why Show hits him. RVD did some weird stuff in his matches. RVD can’t knock Show down with punches so Show sends him out the ring. As good as his kicks are, RVD’s punches look like they couldn’t knock down Sky Low Low. Show gets nutted on the ropes and RVD flies off the top with a swanton for one. Show stands up and dumps RVD on the ropes and out the ring again as we go to break.
It’s a Sky Sports 3 rip so there’s thrilling previews of Aston Villa vs. Fulham which you can purchase for £8. EIGHT FUCKING QUID for a Barclays Premiership match? 2006 was bleak.
We’re back with Show dropping elbows on RVD. Show is in control so he takes time to tell a fan to shut his mouth. Yeah fan, Show needs the oxygen. RVD tries to pummel Show with punches but Show flattens RVD with a Diesel-style diving clothesline. Show tells the fans he’s playing with him, ”like a big cat” and pretends to be a cat.
RVD gets a big kick so Tazz can shout ”How high did RVD get?” RVD finally remembers his kicks are better than his punches and takes down Show with an enziguri and a springboard kick to the face. Rolling Thunder gets two but as RVD runs off the ropes again Show spears him. Show sets up a Vader Elbow-Bomb but misses (”like a building falling on ya!” – Tazz) and they jostle for a bit until the ref gets squashed. The chokeslam gets countered into a DDT and RVD sets up a Five Star but here’s Test who throws him off WITH IMPACT. Test nails him with a chair but Hardcore Holly returns and twats Test with another. Show tries to interfere so Holly twats him too. It’s like 1999 all over again! RVD lands the Five Star and that’s it.
Winner: Rob Van Dam (Match was decent but more importantly, we have momentum and feuds finally. Holly vs. Test, Holly vs. RVD and Show vs. RVD. It’s not Best Of The Super J but something’s always better than nothing.)
Overall: The show has improved from ”the CM Punk show” to ”the CM Punk and the main event guys” show, so there’s that. It’s still amazing to think this show has a PPV in a month and a half’s time with barely anything built up. I know the show’s called ”ECW” but that doesn’t mean they have to steal their bad habits from 2000.