While the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) and World Championship Wrestling (WCW) were locked in a fight for national supremacy for much of 1995, a renegade promotion based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania built a cult-like following. Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW) relished challenging wrestling’s norms and conventions. When Jim Crockett sought to revive the prestige of the NWA World Heavyweight Championship in 1994, ECW star Shane Douglas threw the title on the canvas in disgust after winning it in a tournament final against 2 Cold Scorpio. While the WWF tried to tone down violence in its product by not allowing the use of chairs or ladders as weapons, ECW encouraged its brawlers to put each other through tables and use weapons liberally. And whereas WCW sought to take wrestling back to the 1980s with a revival of Hulkamania, ECW’s owner and booker Paul Heyman – known at this time by his television name Paul E. Dangerously – tapped into the 1990s Jerry Springer-like zeitgeist with risqué storylines and promos that featured colorful language.
We’re still in Miami, Flordia for the ECW on Sci-Fi after Wrestlemania and our NEWWWWW ECW Champion Kane is here to fill in the exposition in case you missed his match because you were away buying merch or blinking. CM Punk shows up with his briefcase to also fill in the gaps but promises he’s not going to cash in on Kane, but if he wanted to he could do it anytime. Chavo interrupts, calling Kane’s win a fluke. Punk calls Chavo a record breaker by having the shortest match in Wrestlemania history. (He may be right there.) Benjamin comes out and says ”do you feel lucky Punk?” generating this well-deserved reaction:
anyway blahblah tag match tonight that isn’t changed into a nine-man match by Shane McMahon.
We’re sold out in Chicago so the crowd should be loud.
We’re in Cleveland, Ohio and the video editors earn their pay by making last week’s Chernobyl look like a mere Three Mile Island. Tonight it’s Punk vs. Chavo Part VI: The Undiscovered Country.
We’re in Tucson, AZ and our main event is CM Punk vs. Elijah Burke vs. Shelton Benjamin and OH SHIT IT’S THIS MATCH, rev up the GIF making machine. But first here’s some dude’s sign.
We’re in San Diego, CA and Ric Flair is here to talk about being inducted into the Hall Of Fame but that doesn’t mean he’s ready to retire (he wasn’t kidding) but Elijah Burke interrupts to say he’s the new Flair. (yeah, David). Shelton Benjamin shows up to remind us all Burke & Benjamin are still a thing and to tell Flair he’s the NEW Gold Standard. It ends with Flair getting attacked until CM Punk makes the save. Basic set-up for tonight’s main event, highlight was some guy excited for Tim.
We’re in Houston, Texas the week after the historic Gulf Of Mexico match. We get clips of Chavo being saved by scuba divers and he complains about how ill he is after falling into the disgusting Gulf. Oh and he was stung by a jellyfish which amuses some NFL-Dad type so much he gives it a standing ovation.
The lame version of DON’T QUESTION MY HEART brings us to Atlanta, GA and our main event is finally The Boogeyman vs. Big Daddy V!
We’re in Minneapolis, MN and Armando Estrada proudly introduces us to the new ECW Champion: CM Punk. Punk recognises Armando’s brown-nosing and gifts him the new CM Punk shirt (the one that looked like a bunch of tattoos). Armando puts it on, thanks Punk and introduces his opponent this Sunda–OH FOR THE LOVE OF GOD NOT ELIJAH BURKE AGAIN.
Well if you were expecting a fun write-up, don’t bother clicking the ”more” bit.
We’re in Cincinnati, Ohio and last week Punk won a Fatal Four Way to earn a shot at John Morrison’s title. I’m in a rush so let’s get to it.
Let’s take a look at the relevant news from Powerslam Magazine before we watch this episode because WWE’s reputation was declining quicker than Rickety Cricket in Always Sunny:
We’re live in Mohegan Sun Casino with Coachman continuing his search for WHO IS VINCE’S KID. Oh and he casually introduces the new ECW GM, Armando Estrada. Armando says his name a few times and introduces John Morrison and CM Punk for the contract signing for Summerslam. ”Sitting on the chair next to me with your little tattoos is the closest you’re going to get to earthly paradise.” Morrison asks Punk to think about signing, after all he couldn’t last fifteen minutes with him last week. Punk says he’s right because he beat him before the fifteen minutes. What a stupid set-up bit to remind the audience about last week. Punk says he doesn’t fluff his wear like Farrah Fawcett or wear jackets in August, but he will be wearing the ECW Title after Summerslam. Armando stops them from coming to blows and gives them matches tonight with the ECW monsters. There was a lot happening here with Coach and Armando but the important thing is this:
We have enough plot for a dramatic video recap of last week! Punk won a Three Way Dance last week to get a shot at John Morrison tonight in a Fifteen Minutes Of Fame match. If he wins, he gets a shot at the title at Summerslam. Simples.
We’re in Youngstown, Ohio and THIS IS THE NEW SHIT is back in the intro, so we can have more Manson discussion. Despite enjoying his music, I’ve always been annoyed at him daring to put out Smells Like Children as a full-priced album (that I paid full-price money for) when it was three covers, three remixes and some shit. I don’t care if you recorded Portrait Of An American Family, I’m glad Dita Von Teese left you.
Great American Bash 2007 was this Sunday and had a bit of a rocky build. So Kane vs. Edge was scheduled but Edge ended up injuring his left pectoral muscle after Kane attacked him during the Mardi Gras celebration on the July 10 Smackdown. Edge was forced to vacate his title on the Smackdown before the PPV and a Battle Royal was held to crowd the new champ which was won by The Great Khali (who held the title upside down). The injury to Edge had the unexpected positive of avoiding the fallout from the upcoming Pharmacy Probe steroid scandal he was named in.
Also the announced Khali vs. Batista match was changed to Kane vs. Khali vs. Batista after Kane and Batista went to a non-finish on the same episode of Smackdown after Khali blundered in on their Number One Contender match. The good news was no-one was injured in the process, the bad news was the match happened.
Another new intro, this time set to Marilyn Manson’s This Is The New Shit. Weird choice of song, not only was it four years old by this point and heavily censored (ARE YOU MOTHERblubblubs READY FOR THE NEW blubHIT?) but the themes of the song & album were about how everything had been done before and nothing was new (including Manson, who turned to shite after this) which is sending mixed messages for the brand with old ECW guys and the dudes Smackdown didn’t want. Manson’s a good metaphor for ECW, great in 1997 but damaged goods after 2001.
One Night Stand 2007 was last Sunday so in relevant news:
Rob Van Dam surprisingly beat Randy Orton in a stretcher match which would end up being RVD’s last match for WWE for several years. RVD sold a concussion as if he was drunk for most of the match so he could keep up with Orton’s pace. After dangerously flubbing a dive outside, RVD punched Orton a few times and rolled him across the finishing line.
Show begins with Hatted Vince looking like Marc Lawrence walking to the ring.
This is the episode after Wrestlemania 23 so let’s have a quick look at the relevant bits: ECW on Sci-Fi’s CM Punk was involved in the Money In The Bank opener but ended up being the guy Ken Kennedy bashed off a ladder to win the briefcase. Some stuff happened with Kennedy’s MITB, but he’s not in ECW so fuck him.
Recap of Sabu attacking Big Show from last week. Paul Heyman tells us ECW is his life but tonight Dr. Frankenstein is going to kill his creation as he’s going to wrestle Sabu. At least he got the right Frankenstein for the analogy.
We’re in Reading, Pennsylvania and your commentators are Joey Styles (Rick Moranis) & Tazz (Deep Roy).
by Logan Scisco
alternatives to WWF Magazine. We return to WWF Magazine this week, looking at the August 2000 issue. On the cover is someone who Triple H says is
a very unlikely candidate for the Hall of Fame:
remember that the WWF gradually tried to make Chyna sexier for viewers. She started as a serious bodyguard in a role
unlike that of any other woman who came before her (or even since), but then
started wearing makeup and by 2000 the WWF was presenting her as more of a
physically gifted, attractive “diva.”
magazine is no longer Kevin Kelly.
Instead it is a woman named Laura Bryson. By this point the magazine was a shell of its
former self, at least in my eyes, and the pay-per-view recaps will show that.
letter saying that Lita is not a potential legend since she is just attached to
Essa Rios and is not pursuing a singles title.
Of course, that would change down the road and by the time this magazine
was on newsstands, Lita had ditched Rios and joined the Hardy Boyz. A few fans write in how they are fans of
Jacqueline and how awesome she is. And
Rich Coleman writes an angry letter saying that the WWF is in danger of
“turning soft” because babyfaces like Kane just walk off instead of fight. It is probably a safe bet that Rich is no
longer a fan of the product today.
three greatest SummerSlam matches of all-time.
(2) Test-Shane McMahon from SummerSlam 1999, and (3) Big Boss Man-Koko B. Ware
from SummerSlam 1988. Yes, no Ultimate
Warrior-Rick Rude and no Bret Hart-Mr. Perfect.
The company’s unwillingness to reference wrestlers who were still in WCW
killed this list since that meant no Bret, no Hulk Hogan, no Randy Savage, and
no Scott Hall. Evidently, Big
Bossman-Koko was a historic bout because “the contrasting styles of these two
Superstars set the tone for many of the great SummerSlam matches that would
follow.” So next time you enjoy your
favorite SummerSlam match, give proper credit to the Bossman and Koko. Oh, and Frankie too!
the WWF Barber Shop:
some WWF cards that are twenty-two carat gold.
Enjoy seeing Billy Gunn in all his glory, trying to avoid submitting to
the Rock in a headlock! Each card will
cost you $9.95 (plus 95 cents of shipping and handling).
profiling Bull Buchanan.
Truth Commission in 1997 before returning a few years later as a partner of the
Big Bossman. He would then be part of
the Right to Censor and had a brief partnership with John Cena before eventually
departing the company. The only
highlight of his run was jobbing to Crash Holly in an upset at the 2000 King of
the Ring. He was also briefly a tag team
champion with the “Goodfather,” but tag team title runs become a blur for me
never find for auction from “SteviE-bay” (in reference to Stevie Richards):
that fills the part of the magazine formerly occupied by Vic Venom’s “The Bite”
in the mid-1990s. It is a debate column
where Aaron Williams and Laura take opposite stands on an issue. The issue this month is Vince McMahon.
person.” The comment about Vince having
an Ivy League education is something that I do not think is actually true, as
Linda earned her degree from East Carolina University and Vince was around her
at the time. Laura defends Vince as “in
tune to the reality of the world we live in,” something that could not be said
of the booking of the company now. She
also refers to Vince as an American hero, thereby explaining Stephanie’s 9/11
reference on Smackdown! in 2001.
edition, had a piece about Chyna. This
one is no different, as she gets attention in an article called “Power Behind
on the magazine, but the story does not really talk about a secret. It recaps her partnerships with D-Generation
X, Kane, and Eddie Guerrero. Evidently
she also had an alliance with the Kat sometime in the Attitude Era, but I do
not recall that at all. In light of
Triple H’s podcast, one thing stands out:
“We [Triple H and Chyna] went our own ways, but that does not rule out
our paths crossing again.” It definitely
seems like Triple H had put the kibosh on any plans to have their paths cross at
a future Hall of Fame ceremony. Still,
though, why tell readers you are going to talk about “Chyna’s Secret” and then
just write an article that merely reiterates what we have heard about Chyna in
magazine pieces in the years up to this point:
she has worked with lots of great superstars and knows their strengths
even added to the list. Poor Jimmy is
portrayed just like Kamala, the Giant Gonzalez, and Yokozuna: he wanted to bury the Undertaker’s soul and
“erase his very being.” And here I
thought that all Snuka wanted to do was win a WrestleMania match in Los
Angeles! This is a pretty blah piece,
just telling educated fans everything they already know about the
Undertaker. And this piece does not even
talk about the Undertaker’s new biker persona!
as writer Mike Fazioli calls him “the king of Hardcore.”
24/7 basis, which led to him being called the “Houdini of Hardcore.” If you ever try to look at the history of
that title it will make your head hurt as the 24/7 rule led to about three to
four title changes on every house show.
We are informed that Crash’s toughness comes from his cousin Hardcore
Holly, who used to beat him up when he would get angry. After all, look what Bob did to Matt
Cappotelli on Tough Enough!
of Roots Genoa that we are bound to come across in a WWF Magazine of this time period
WWF champion even though there are concerns by the WWF promotion and marketing
teams that he might do something big since he is not as charismatic as other
superstars. The article even draws a parallel
about how competing in the WWF is more difficult than the past since Benoit
cannot be like a wrestler “in the old days who could coast defeating perennial
losers in easy televised matches” between big bouts. Our big eerie line from this well-written
piece by Keith Elliot Greenberg: “Most
likely, their [the WWF’s] efforts to convert him into a cut-out media darling
will be unsuccessful…”
WWF. The list is purely kayfabed as
there is no mention of Steve Blackman on this list.
ranking because he is not intimidating enough.
Tazz has to be in the top three due to his gimmick.
by the nick name of “She-Devil” around this time.
although it is okay for men to buy her things.
She also says that she has no interest in pursuing a singles title and
that she considers Bubba Ray a “bully” for putting her through a table. I am concerned that she says Jerry Lawler is
her “kind of guy,” though. Dustin should
have submitted this as evidence in the divorce proceedings for custody!
smaller and smaller, I meant it. Look
what we have been reduced to in the 2000s:
sentences? This is really egregious for
the Iron Man Match between Triple H and the Rock, which gets less than a
entitled “Gettin’ Heat.”
WWF superstar. This month, though, he
attacks himself for stealing other wrestlers personas when he came into the
company. He says that he wishes he
sought out Shawn Michaels for advice and he writes him a letter asking for
guidance. I will bet that Michaels never
column this was the worst. The only
redeeming column was Greenberg’s on Benoit with the rest constituting very
boring, dry reads. The magazine lost a
lot of its creativity without Russo or Kelly at the helm. Next week we will move forward two years and
recap the April 2002 issue of WWF
Magazine, which features the New World Order on the cover.