The SmarK Rant for WWF Insurrextion UK 2000 – 05.06.00

The SmarK Rant for WWF Insurrextion 2000 – 05.06.00

That’s a pretty labored EXTREME spelling of the show’s name.  I guess they wanted to trademark it?

Anyway, this is one of the UK-only PPV shows that I’ve never seen before, but WWE is nice enough to archive on the Network.  Don’t remember anything about it from the time.

Live from London, England.

Your hosts are Jim Ross & Jerry Lawler

Too Cool v. Perry Saturn & Dean Malenko

Dean Malenko had just won the light heavyweight title from Scotty at Backlash with the legendary top rope DDT finish, so this is a rematch of sorts.  The Radz double-team Sexay to start, but he powerslams Saturn and the babyfaces trap him in the corner and double-team him.  Saturn puts Scotty down with a back elbow and Malenko comes in with a nice legsweep to block a hiptoss.  Saturn comes in and stomps Scotty down for two, and Dean adds a clothesline for two.  Scotty runs them together and rolls up Malenko for two, but Saturn takes the ref to break up the count and the heels go to work again after a little shoving match to show their dissention.  Like, it had only been three months since they debuted, why break them up already?  Malenko charges and Scotty puts him on the top rope to counter and brings him in with a superplex.  Hot tag Sexay and he runs wild with slams on the Radicalz and gets a flying clothesline on Saturn for two.  It’s BONZO GONZO and that means it’s time for the WORM on both guys as the crowd goes nuts for it.  The Radz bail to escape the sure pinfall off that devastating finisher, but they collide in the ring while running like cowards, and Malenko headbutts Saturn in the groin as a result.  Sexay finishes him with the flying legdrop at 7:00 and that’s that.  And then Malenko and Saturn brawl after the loss for good measure.  Perfectly cromulent opener.  **1/2

Meanwhile, some creepy kids are preparing for Judgment Day.  In retrospect, what the fuck did any of that have to do with grumpy old man BikerTaker and Limp Bizkit?

Vince McMahon joins us, and he’s of course disappointed that Rock is the new WWF champion, just as we all must be.  Especially here in the “foul air of London”.  Vince just coming out and being a complete condescending douche is always awesome.  Anyway, he’s a genius and he’s got a plan, just like Napolean.  So Rock is hoping that if he loses the title it’s here in England, where no one will ever hear about it, because nothing of consequence ever happens in England and no one cares about the country.  Especially since tonight there’s no Earl Hebner and Stone Cold to help Rock out.  Hot take:  Vince in 2000 was tremendous.

Bull Buchanan v. Kane

Kane apparently suffered a broken hand at the hands of Bull on RAW, which I don’t recall but whatever.  He’s MAD, is the point.  So Kane beats the stuffing out of Bull, but he comes back with a terrible DDT, which Kane thankfully doesn’t sell.  Bull with the springboard axehandle and axe kick to put Kane down, and a legdrop gets two.  Kane comes back with a big boot, but Bull cuts him off and goes up with another double axehandle.  Kane catches him, however, and chokeslams him for the pin at 2:25.  This was about what I expected.  ½*

Meanwhile, Hunter and his bride are happy about how Vince has accepted his son-in-law, but Stephanie isn’t so sure that Vince meant Hunter when he said that a “McMahon family member” would win the title tonight.

Road Dogg v. Bradshaw

Oh man, I forgot about the Run DMC “King of Rock” mashup of the D-X theme.  That was HOT.  The rest of the CD, not so much, but they hit that one out of the park.  Bradshaw beats on the Dogg outside right away, but Faarooq gets involved and gets red-carded by the ref.  Back in, Bradshaw drops an elbow for two.  Suplex gets two.  Bradshaw hammers away in the corner while Lawler tries his hand at Cockney rhyming slang with mixed results.  Bradshaw with a neckbreaker for two. Torture rack, but Dogg fights out, so Bradshaw boots him down for two.  Finally Bradshaw misses a charge and Dogg is allowed to get some offense, hitting a DDT for two.  I’m very confused about who the heel is supposed to be here.  Bradshaw cuts him off again, but Dogg dropkicks him to the floor, which Bradshaw promptly no-sells and spears him.  Dogg slugs back, basically doing a babyface comeback with a flying forearm and shaky kneedrop for two.  Bradshaw with the Clothesline from Hell, but he goes after Tori and gets rolled up for two.  Road Dogg gets the pumphandle slam to finish at 5:58 and Bradshaw barely sells it on the way out.  What even was this supposed to be?  Just a boring undercard match.  *

Arm wrestling match:  The Kat v. Terri

Mae Young is seconding the Kat and Moolah is with Terri for reasons I can’t be bothered to remember or care about.  Anyway, Kat wins the match, but Terri undoes Kat’s top from behind and we get another brief flash of Kat’s boobies off-screen before she covers up again and leaves.  And no, you can’t see anything.

Meanwhile, various people are walking around backstage.

The Dudley Boyz v. Rikishi & Show-Kishi

To say that Big Show was a bit aimless at this point would be an understatement, although his “rotating gimmick” gimmick was pretty amusing for a while.  D-Von attacks Show to start and gets booted down as a result.  Show follows with a corner clothesline and it’s over Rikishi for a double headbutt.  Bubba comes in and slugs it out with Rikishi, but Rikishi runs wild on the Dudleyz and rams them together.  Finally they manage to double-team him and bring him to Dudleyville to work him over.  Meanwhile Lawler goes on this bizarre run about how Rikishi apparently shits his own pants before the match to make the Stinkface more effective. They do the Wazzup behind the ref’s back, although again it’s still before that was a thing.  Finally Show gets a tag after nothing in particular and runs wild with slams, then splashes both guys in the corner at the same time.  So this sets up the double Stinkface, but they fight to the floor and tables are retrieved while Show chokes out D-Von.  Dudleyz do some more double-teaming on Show but now E&C run in and take out Bubba, and it’s JESUS H. CHOKESLAM to finish at 7:08.  And then Too Cool comes out and everyone dances, including the Dudley Boyz.  It was what it was.  *  The match was nothing but the return of Dancin’ Bubba was pretty entertaining.

Kurt Angle v. Chris Benoit

Angle does the usual “America saved you in World War II” thing to make sure we know who the heel is.  Benoit is sporting a pretty impressive shiner here after busting his face on Smackdown the week before.  Benoit jumps on him with a suplex for two right away while Crash Holly joins us on commentary, ready for any challenges to the Hardcore title while he’s vacationing in London.  Angle necks Benoit on the top rope and then rakes the broken eye to take over, and they head to the floor as Kurt keeps pounding on the eyeball.  He chokes away in the corner and fires off an overhead suplex for two and a vertical suplex for two.  Angle with a shoulderblock for two as the crowd is pretty dead.  Angle runs his face into the turnbuckle, but Benoit fires back with the rolling germans for two.  Small package gets two.  Crippler Crossface follows, but Angle thumbs Benoit in the eye to break.  Benoit suplexes him and goes up to finish, but misses the diving headbutt and breaks his own face again.  Angle thumbs him in the eye one more time and finishes with the Angle Slam at 6:02.  That was a cool little story being told through the match, actually.  ***  And even after insulting the country repeatedly, people still cheer Angle’s win because he’s so awesome.

Hardcore title:  Crash Holly v. The British Bulldog

So after another Judgment Day commercial, Bulldog comes out and challenges Crash, hauling him off the announce desk and suplexing him on the ramp.  Crash sends him into the stairs and they head into the ring, where Crash throws some rubbish bins in and chokes away with a strap.  Crash retrieves a chair and gets sent into it, before Davey beats on him with a kendo stick and powerslams him for the pin and the title at 3:30.  Crowd didn’t really care about Bulldog making a surprise appearance here, which speaks to how sad the end of his career got and how much his star diminished.  *

Meanwhile, Edge & Christian sign autographs for a young fan outside.  For a reasonable price.  Jim Ross is SHOCKED that people would charge money for autographs and denies ever doing something like that.  Boy, has THAT philosophy sure changed.

WWF tag team titles:  Edge & Christian v. The Hardy Boyz

E&C were of course at the height of their smarmy douchebag act as JR makes fun of their perfect hair and smiles.  “Pretty soon they’ll be doing shampoo commercials!” he notes.  Yeah, and then basing a whole feud on it.  Matt slugs it out with Christian to start and gets a slam, then takes it to the corner for a beatdown.  Over to Edge, who comes in with a neckbreaker on Edge and puts him on the floor with a headscissors, but Edge evades a dive.  Back in the ring, the Hardyz double-team Edge and run him into Christian for two.  Matt and Christian slug it out and the Hardyz double-team him in their corner and we get a double Poetry in Motion on E&C.  Jeff chases Christian out of the ring and gets clobbered by the champs as a result and run into the railing, and back in that gets two.  E&C with a double headbutt for two.  Christian with a powerslam for two.  Christian with a facelock to cut off the ring and we get some quality cheating from Edge.  Jeff comes back with a backslide for two and sunset flip for two, but Edge cuts him off with a clothesline and goes to another facelock to cut off the ring.  This is a very subdued crowd by the usual standards of this matchup.  Matt drops a flying elbow on Edge behind the ref’s back and Jeff gets two, and it’s hot tag Matt.  He hits neckbreakers on both guys and gets two on Christian, but E&C hit a stacked up superplex on Matt for two.  Jeff dropkicks both of them and dumps Edge, and Matt gets a facebuster on Christian for two.  Everyone fights to the floor and Edge hits the Hardyz with the ring bell for the DQ at 12:51 to retain.  This was pretty subdued by their usual standards, just a normal formula tag team match.  ***

Afterwards, the Dudley Boyz return to a big babyface pop, lay out Christian with 3D, and then put Edge through a table to finish things off.  Funny that Bubba doesn’t make any effort to protect Edge like he does with the women.  He’s just “You’re going through it, bam” and lands on his feet while powerbombing him.

Intercontinental/European title:  Chris Jericho v. Eddie Guerrero

So Jericho lost the European title to Eddie the night after Wrestlemania, but then won the IC title and now we get a title v. title match.  Eddie makes it clear that he doesn’t actually like representing Europe as their champion and wants to kick out everyone in the arena for giving them a bad name.  Who would have thought that this silly heel run for Eddie would eventually turn him into a main eventer?  So after a coin flip, it’s determined that the European title is on the line.  They slug it out and fight to the floor, but Eddie gets a powerslam in the ring for two.  Jericho alley-oops him into the turnbuckles for two and goes to a surfboard, but Eddie bridges out of it and gets a small package for two.  Jericho with a delayed suplex and ARROGANT COVER for two and he goes to a chinlock.  Eddie fights out and Jericho puts him on the floor with a leg lariat, so Eddie runs away and suckers Jericho into getting clotheslined by Chyna.  Back in the ring, Jericho brings him in with a superplex, and that gets two.  Eddie fires back with forearms in the corner and then snaps off a rana for two.  This sets up the Gory Special (aka the most annoying submission move in WWE Champions) and they trade rollups for two off that.  Eddie goes to an abdominal stretch, but Jericho fights out and Eddie chops him down again.  Jericho fights back with a faceplant, but Eddie rolls him up for two, and Jericho clotheslines him for two.  Eddie then unleashes the INVERTED Gory Special to work the back, but Jericho reverses out of that and does his own before turning it into an electric chair facebuster.  Jericho makes the comeback with a bulldog for two and flying forearm for two.  COME ON, REF!  Jericho tries a powerbomb and Eddie takes them both to the floor with a rana, at which point Eddie claims a back injury and makes the ref check him over very closely.  And indeed, this allows Chyna to come in and hit Jericho with a DDT, at which point Eddie miraculously recovers and gets two.  Eddie runs him into the corner, but Jericho comes back with a double powerbomb and Lionsault, but Chyna takes the ref this time.  Jericho gets rid of her, but Eddie grabs the belt, and KABLAM, retains the title at 12:02.  This was, as usual tonight, not up to the level you’d expect but still a fun match with good work.  ***

Meanwhile, Shane and Hunter argue about who is going to be the one to pin Rock and win the title, much like Miz and Morrison at Backlash.

WWF Title:  The Rock v. HHH v. Shane McMahon

So, I’m assuming that the theme of the show was Bush’s “Machinehead” and they had to edit it out for the Network, right?  Because the generic version used here is a pretty clear ripoff.  So of course, Rock won the title from HHH at Backlash a few days prior in what may have been his peak in the sport if we’re not counting the Hogan match.  The McMahons double-team Rock for a while to start, of course and Shane shows off his pugilism skills, followed by HHH, while Vince cheers them on.  And of course it backfires when Rock finally makes a comeback and lays them both out, then unleashes FLIP FLOP AND FLY on them.  HHH cuts him off with a clothesline and gets two, and the heels choke Rock out on the ropes with help from Vince.  HHH gets the MAIN EVENT SLEEPER (wait, sorry, two years too soon with that joke) and JR notes that “some people” say that Vince is the devil himself as I have the mental image of Mr. Burns exclaiming ‘WHO TOLD YOU!” in response.  HHH with the chinlock on the mat, but then Shane and HHH finally hit their limit of getting along and Shane turns on him.  He tries a moonsault on Rock, but misses and lands on his feet, at which point Rock clotheslines him and hits HHH with a DDT.  Steph takes the ref as Rock gets the visual pinfall on Shane.  Shane tries to hit Rock with a Pedigree but neglects the KICK and WHAM portions and so is unable to power Rock down and finish the move.  That visual was pretty funny.  Ref gets bumped and Vince trips up Rock, which allows HHH to knock the Rock out with the belt for his own visual pinfall.  So Vince calls out Gerry Brisco as a replacement ref and that gets two, but Rock recovers and finds a chair to take Shane out of the ring.  He goes to beat on HHH and Vince grabs the chair, and it’s KICK WHAM PEDIGREE for two, at which point HHH takes out Brisco in frustration.  Geez, the TNA shows I’m currently reviewing would complain that this is a tad overbooked.  So it’s a second KICK WHAM PEDIGREE for Rock and this time Vince decides to don the ref shirt himself, but conquering hero ref Earl Hebner runs down now and takes him out, resulting in Vince punching the post by accident.  Knowing Vince he hauled back and hit it as hard as he could.  HHH goes up and Shane crotches him by accident, at which point Vince runs around the ring and walks into a Rock Bottom to get rid of him.  And then Rock finishes off his circus with the People’s Elbow on Shane to retain at 14:45.  Well, it certainly wasn’t boring and you can’t say that they didn’t give the crowd their money’s worth.  ***1/4  See, now JR says that “Vince’s guarantee of a McMahon family member winning has gone awry”, but if you watch the interview with Vince from earlier, at no point does he ever GUARANTEE that Rock was losing here.  He did “promise” that it would happen, but that’s a very specific difference in wording.  I don’t know how many times that Vince’s guaran-damn-tees were proven wrong, but it was almost never.  But this wasn’t one of them.

So yeah, overall a pretty fun and easy to watch show, although not exactly up to the level of a normal PPV in 2000 or anything.  If you judge it on the level of a really good house show, you’ll be satisfied.  I’d call this one WATCH IT.