Mike Reviews: ECW Hardcore TV #338 – 16/10/1999

Hello You!

Last week’s show was pretty rubbish as we just got clips from the TNN Show and some other clips from the Anarchy Rulz pay per view as Hardcore TV continues its Velocity-cation.

Hopefully we can actually get something new this week, especially as we’re not too far away from November to Remember, the event that was usually ECW’s version of WrestleMania/Starrcade.

As always, you can read a recap of the previous episode of ECW on TNN prior to this issue of Hardcore TV from Mr. Scott Keith by clicking right HERE!

I also did a review of New Japan’s King of Pro Wrestling show from 14/10/2019, so why not give that a goosey gander?

So with all that dealt with, let’s drive down to the store and buy a shedload of baking trays as we once again take things to The Extreme!!!

Today’s matches were taped from New Orleans, Louisiana

Calling the action is Joey Styles

We open up with a promo from The Impact Players of Justin Credible and Lance Storm, along with their associates Jason and Dawn Marie. Credible brags about all the damage they’ve done and Storm says they want to bring dignity to the ECW Tag Team Titles by taking them off Tommy Dreamer and Raven.

Show Intro. This week’s tagline is “You Are Watching ECW Hardcore TV, Feel The Impact!”. In a funny touch, the intro video this week solely features The Impact Players beating down all the other ECW wrestlers. They manage to find 4 seconds of them beating up Sid as well, even though that match did an amazing job at destroying their credibility as Sid walked right through them on the way to a DQ win. We do finally get some clips of the other ECW wrestlers at the end, but most of that video was The Impact Players laying waste to everyone.

Joey Styles is in the ring and welcomes us all to Hardcore TV and notes that the next match will be a battle of the sexes.

Opening Match
Jason Vs Jazz

The bizarre SEGA Mega Drive styled music for Jason doesn’t suit him whatsoever but would be fun in a Sonic level. Jazz is from New Orleans, so she’s of course pretty popular with the Louisiana crowd. Jason’s hometown being “Somewhere in Europe” is quite funny actually. Jason attacks Jazz with a clothesline before the bell rings, but Jazz responds by throwing him into the metal railings outside the ring.

Jazz sends Jason into the front row and then follows with a cross body off the apron into the crowd in an impressive spot. That gets two for Jazz back inside the ring. I forgot to mention earlier that Jason was defeated by Jazz at Heat Wave 99, so he’s looking to avenge that defeat here. Jason takes control of things back inside the ring with his basic stuff, and its fine if not particularly impressive. Jason is a pretty basic worker, which is likely why he became a manager, but he’s not awful or anything like that.

Jason makes some covers on Jazz, but they are pretty relaxed and that allows Jazz to keep kicking out when a better more professional cover might have given Jason the three count. Of course the hubris is all building up to bite the heel in the bum, and that eventually happens when Jason decides to bring a chair in to put the finishing touches to Jazz. Jazz gets hold of the chair and wallops Jason with it before delivering the Jazz Stinger (X-Factor) onto the chair to give Jazz the three count.

WINNER: JAZZ
RATING: *1/2

This wasn’t awful or anything but it was pretty dull and it wasn’t like the Heat Wave match was so good that people were clamouring for a rematch. I wouldn’t mind seeing Jazz get in there with a more well-rounded and talented wrestler so we could see what she’s really capable of as Jason, though not terrible, is basic at best when competing in ring. The question is how many of the top workers in ECW would be willing to work with her and sell for her?

COMMERCIAL

Back from the break we see Rhino and Steve Corino running down to the ring on TNN so Rhino could destroy David Cash and Pablo Marquez, whilst Steve Corino calls out some New Orleans’s Saints football players in the crowd and then sets Rhino on them for a pull apart brawl.

Joey Styles is in front of the ECW Banner, where he’s already complaining about The Network censors, sowing the seeds for an eventual storyline. Joey hypes that tonight we’re getting Little Guido, Yoshihiro Tajiri and Simon Diamond in a three way dance, whilst the main event will be ECW TV Champ Rob Van Dam putting his belt on the line against Little Spike Dudley.

COMMERCIAL

Match Two
Simon Diamond w/ Dick Hertz Vs Little Guido w/ Big Sal Vs Yoshihiro Tajiri

Before the match starts Simon Diamond does his usual spiel whilst Dick, a big muscled bodybuilder type, stands in the background trying to look mean. Simon notes that Dick will be watching his rear end at all times. Simon orders Dick to wish him luck, at which point Dick says “Go get em tiger” and gives him a reassuring pat on the backside. Simon pauses and then says “Simon didn’t ask you to do that, but I’ll let it slide”.

So this would be probably be match #50 involving Guido and Crazy in one calendar year (I’m sure you can find the exact number on CAGEMATCH if you’re willing to do some research) but they’ve added Simon in this time to at least give off a suggestion of this being a fresh match-up. Before the match starts we get comments from Danny Doring, Roadkill and Miss Congeniality. Doring makes fun of the fact that Chris Chetti is injured and “dedicates” every match the team has to him going forward.

Back in the ring, Simon is antagonising Tajiri on the mic, so Tajiri makes lewd comments about Simon’s relationship with Dick and then lays him out with a flurry. Whilst Simon is selling, Guido and Tajiri go at it and it’s good like it was the last 49 times I saw it. Tajiri ends up waling on both of his opponents, as he appears to be the defacto babyface in this one on account of him being someone the crowd can respect, even if they don’t particularly like him.

Simond actually gets a dive out onto Tajiri and then blocks one from Guido, but as they brawl that allows Tajiri to take them both out with an Asai moonsault. Joey hypes up how young all three guys in the match are, which is great and all but Tajiri and Guido are hardly fresh names on the show at this stage so their actual chronological age doesn’t really matter. And indeed, Guido soon polishes off Simon with the Tomikazee, thus leaving us with Tajiri and Guido in a singles bout once again. Would it have killed them to at least let Simon reach the last two just so we didn’t have to watch these two wrestle each other AGAIN?!

Tajiri goes to The Tarantula on Guido, but Sal attacks him to break that up and then holds Tajiri for a Guido attack. Simon puts a stop to that though by tripping Guido, which in turn leads to Sal chasing them to the back. Tajiri hangs Guido in the Tree of Woe and gets a baseball slide for two, but Guido is able to counter an up and over with a face buster for a two of his own. Guido goes for his own Tree of Woe baseball slide, but Tajiri does a crunch to dodge it and Guido goes salami first into the ring post. That allows Tajiri to follow with the brain buster and that’s enough to end the match.

WINNER: YOSHIHIRO TAJIRI
RATING: **

This was sloppy in places and generally quite rushed, but there were some good sequences it and I was entertained for the most part. I’m just so sick of the Tajiri/Guido/Super Crazy combination right now and I would gladly see all of them wrestle anyone else so long as I didn’t have to see them wrestle one another for a few months.

We get a backstage promo from Jerry Lynn, wearing glasses that make him look like the world’s most extreme science teacher. Lynn says his injured ribs will not stop him from taking the fight to The Impact Players. This leads to Steve Corino interrupting and he tells Lynn to stop complaining and just work hurt without bragging like the rest of the wrestlers do. Lynn hands his glasses to the cameraman and goes looking for Corino, but it’s all a trap as Tajiri is waiting in Corino’s locker room and kicks Lynn right in his injured ribs. Hey, if that’s a new program for Tajiri that gets him away from Crazy and Guido for a bit then I’m game!

Joey hypes up our main event of Rob Van Dam Vs Little Spike Dudley.

COMMERCIAL

Main Event
ECW Television Title
Rob Van Dam w/ Bill Alfonso Vs Little Spike Dudley

We get the first appearance of Spike’s future storyline girlfriend here as he poses with a woman dressed like him during his entrance. RVD controls things pretty easily in the early going, but Spike fights back and is able to rana RVD to the floor before following with a dive as we take a break.

COMMERCIAL

Back from the break and ECW does that annoying thing where RVD is now in control of the match despite Spike being the one who was winning when we took the break. They’ve even brawled over to the other side of the ring in the interim. I get cutting the match up so that it fits into the allotted time, but could you at least give us a replay or something so we now how RVD found himself to be in control when his butt was getting royally kicked before the ad break?

Anyway, RVD works over Spike with his usual stuff (Sitting him on the railings outside and kicking him, leg dropping a chair over Spikes face etc). Spike manages to keep kicking out however, showing the resiliency he was known for. Spike eventually manages to fight off an RVD superplex attempt and delivers a Tornado DDT onto a chair for a double down, before dropkicking a chair in RVD’s face before he can use it for two.

Spike gets a lovely rana next, but RVD is one again able to kick out, so Spike goes for the Acid Drop. RVD blocks that however by setting Spike up on the top rope and then kicking a chair into his face. RVD heads up top for the Five Star Frogsplash and that’s enough for him to pick up the win.

WINNER AND STILL CHAMPION: ROB VAN DAM
RATING: *1/2

Something tells me that this might have been a better match in its uncut version, as the version we saw was one step above being a squash win for RVD and didn’t give Spike much of a chance to show what he could do. It was pretty sloppy in places as well, as I’m thinking these guys weren’t especially great opponents for one another chemistry wise. I do enjoy Spike’s act and better things are waiting for him down the line, so I’m looking forward to that.

Joey is back in front of the ECW Banner where he hypes up that RVD will be at November to Remember to defend his Title against Taz. In addition to that, Mike Awesome will defend his ECW World Title against Masato Tanaka, provided he survives his title defence against New Jack on TNN next week. Joey closes by saying Hardcore TV will be the place you’ll be able to see all the extreme stuff that the TNN censors won’t let them show, which at least gives it a reason to exist beyond just being a recap show I guess.

In Conclusion

I wasn’t really digging it this week, with the matches not being especially thrilling and the show just feeling flat in general. That being said, I’m interested in some of the storyline directions they seem to be going in and Taz Vs Rob Van Dam should be an intriguing build seeing as Taz is out of the door to the WWF in the near future and will likely be booed vociferously by the ECW audience for having the temerity to get a better paid and safer gig working for someone else.