The show starts off with CM Punk anticlimactically returning, a trope he’d perfect over the next ten years. He’s full-on anti-Jeff Hardy at this point so the crowd aren’t happy to hear him bragging about being the first ever Triple Crown Straight Edge champion. I wonder if he ever called himself Major Threat?
Zack Ryder & Rosa Mendes head to the ring with their new gimmick of Rosa talking endlessly and Ryder smiling like a buffoon. This goes down really well in Philly because they’re happy. Ryder wants a rematch with Shelton Benjamin who agrees…as long as Ryder sits in the corner and he gets to wrestle Rosa.
Shelton: “Ryder, we’ve wrestled before and you were a tool…you may as well rename yourself Black & Decker because you’re a Power Tool.”
Anyway Ryder changes his mind about the match and cheap-shots Shelton as the happy couple skedaddle.
The Hurricane vs. Paul Burchill (Mask vs. Career)
This has been building for months and it gets a Dramatic Video Package to cover the basics (Hurricane has been saving people backstage, Paul’s been diddling his sister). They start off as dramatic as possible and I’m sure backstage they had high hopes for the crowd going BANANA but sadly they’re the first match on the pre-show for Smackdown so it’s just kids yelling at their mams. Hurricane sends Paul outside and he follows with a tope to wake the crowd up but a two-count/chinlock combo shuts them up again. A crafty Saito Suplex also does nothing for them and we go to break.
We return to Hurricane trying to escape a chinlock but getting gimped with a short-arm clothesline. This was during the period where Burchill would introduce a new move every match and was the definition of 411mania’s Hidden Highlight column. Hurricane tries to escape the clutches of the Pirate Fucker but after powering out and landing on his feet, he gets immediately clotheslined for two. Burchill misses a “rugby-style offence” charge into the corner and Hurricane starts firing off rights and the kids are YAYYing now. Eye Of The Hurricane gets blocked with a Pele kick of all things but it doesn’t stop Helms who goes for it again seconds later and it gets converted into a Northern Lights for two. These guys clearly watched Regal vs. Christian last week and went YEAH WE’RE DOING THAT TONIGHT. Frankensteiner off the top looks to set up the Eye again but Helms gets distracted by
tweeting incessantly Katie Lea so he gets Jackhammered…for two. Paul’s pissed but he goes for it again and they have the nerve to rip off Halloween Havoc 1998.
That’s like covering Enter Sandman. Hurricane slowly gets the cover and it gets a Scott Armstrong thre-NO as the kids have stopped bugging their mams and are glued to this. Burchill and Hurricane jostle on the ropes until Hurricane manages to pull off The Eye Of The Hurricane right off the top to finally end it.
Winner: The Hurricane (These two busted their arses off as both men had something to prove: Hurricane needed to show he was still flexible after his neck surgery and Burchill had to prove there was more to him than piracy and fingerblasting his sister. The result was a match that had the bored crowd eating out of the palm of their hands and it’s almost a shame it happened so near the end of the brand, like getting a high score on the pinball machine on the Titanic.
Post-match Paul weeps in the ring as the crowd give a half-hearted NANANAANANA.
Backstage, alleged GM Tiffany welcomes CM Punk back to the brand. Punk starts judging her for daring to drink alcohol so Tiffany responds by telling him he should try being a human being before tapping his arm and walking off. Tiffany the one-armed five foot Barbie-type is very believable in the role of Bill Watts.
Vance Archer vs. Johnny Andrews
Hey it’s Johnny “I Ike Big Sweaty Men” Knockout!
That one squash match with Braun may be more memorable than anything Archer did in WWE. Archer’s finisher has more OOMPH than previous weeks but it’s still a Reverse DDT.
Speaking of which, Christian ties his shoes up backstage and CM Punk shows up. They talk about the Straight Edge lifestyle (which seems to be the theme of the night) and Christian asks if he’s allowed to hold hands with girls. It gets serious when Punk reminds him he was the first-ever three-time WWE World Champion and Christian responds with “yeah…was.”
CM Punk & William Regal vs. Christian & R-Truth
This is a Survivor Series Preview match of the five-on-five match this Sunday and this is our first time hearing about it. This is R-Truth’s second and final ECW appearance after showing up in the MITB Qualifier Battle Royal a while ago, for those that care about these things. Christian starts off with Punk but he can’t be arsed waiting and drags Regal in for a big schmozz as we immediately go to break with Regal & Punk getting knocked outside.
We return to Truth delivering a head-scissors to Regal who backs off and tags in Punk, who takes a dropkick to the outside. Christian sends them flying with the baseball slide and Truth sails through the ropes onto both ne’er-do-wellers. Truth spends too long smiling so Punk bonks his knee off the apron and that sets up the next few minutes of leg-buggery. Regal does his best to show off every leg-lock he knows and it works because he’s got more flavours than Ben & Jerry. Eventually Truth makes the hot tag to Christian who plants Punk with a Tornado DDT for two. Did they have a big match on PPV? This feels like something that could have happened but didn’t. Punk connects with the Running Knee into the corner but the bulldog gets shit-canned into a Reverse DDT. The pin-fall attempt gets broken up by Regal, Truth tries to save by landing a dropkick but he’s still in pain after all that hard work so as the ref is checking on him, Willie splats Christian with a Knee Trembler so Punk can finish with the GTS.
Winners: CM Punk & William Regal (Quick house show tag match with a very well done finish.)
Post-match Punk and Regal ham up their victory like Skeletor & Hordak after trapping He-Man in a block of ice.
The Five-On-Five match would be ECW’s only contribution to the PPV with Regal & Christian making up the numbers in a match most remembered for Kofi kicking Orton’s face off.
Overall: Watch Hurricane and Burchill if you fancy seeing Helms’ Last Stand but skip the rest.
Oh but watch Triple H vs. John Cena vs. Shawn Michaels from Survivor Series 2009 if you get the chance because it usually gets forgotten.