Archive for the ECW Category

The Chuiresu Diaries 10/17/12: Chicken Soup for the Wrestling Geek’s Soul

Posted in ECW, WWE with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 17, 2012 by Grappleholic

I’m trying something different here.  I don’t get to write reviews often anymore due to being a very stressed college senior, but every now and then I get the chance to watch a little bit of Pro Wrestling and would like to share my thoughts on it.  So, from time to time, I may post what I’m calling a diary with short thoughts on whatever I happen to watch that day.  Full show reviews may still happen in the future, if I ever have free time again.

I picked the the ECW Unreleased Vol. 1 Blu-ray recently, and this evening I’m taking a few hours off from stressing about life, the universe, and everything to enjoy it for a bit.

Former ECW announcer and current WWE.com guy Joey Styles is hosting this thing.

NWA World Heavyweight Championship Tournament – Final: ECW Heavyweight Champion “The Franchise” Shane Douglas vs. 2 Cold Scorpio (Hardcore TV, August 27, 1994).  This was the night Extreme Championship Wrestling was born.  Douglas and Scorpio had a very watchable little back and forth wrestling match, which Douglas won with a belly to belly suplex in 12:52 after Scorpio missed a moonsault.  But the post-match promo is where it’s at.  Douglas refuses the title, saying the NWA is a dead organization.  He instead declares his ECW title to be a World title.  Soon after, Eastern Championship Wrestling became Extreme Championship Wrestling.

Tommy Dreamer vs. Raven (w/ Stevie Richards & Beulah McGillicutty) (Hostile City Showdown, April 15, 1995).  Fun little brawl.  Raven gives Dreamer 3 consecutive DDTs, but Dreamer kicks out.  Dreamer DDTs Raven on the floor, but Stevie interferes.  Dreamer DDTs Stevie and the referee, then Beulah runs in.  Dreamer gives her a piledriver and Philadelphia, apparently big fans of domestic violence, love it.  Raven is announced as the winner by DQ.  Joey Styles puts it over as a moral victory for Dreamer.  Stevie carries Beulah to the back instead of allowing her to be stretchered.

Joey Styles puts over the workrate guys like Dean Malenko and Eddie Guerrero who got their first shot in the United States in ECW.

2 Cold Scorpio & Dean Malenko vs. ECW World Television Champion Eddie Guerrero & Taz  (w/ Paul E. Dangerously) (Heat Wave, 7/15/95).  The audio on some of these is pretty bad.  You can hear the announcer, but not the guys talking on the microphone.  So the banter before this match is completely lost on me.  This reminds me, I used to love Taz.  There’s something awesome about a short, stout guy who’s a total ass kicker.  If this isn’t the match where Taz broke his neck, it’s the same configuration of guys.  3 minutes in Eddie and Malenko tag in and start chain wrestling and I vomit rainbows in joy.  Scorpio and Taz have an awesome mat exchange that ends with Scorpio getting suplexed out of his boots.  For that matter, every combination of these guys is awesome, but Malenko and Eddie are two of my favorite wrestlers of all time.  Malenko puts Taz in a Sharpshooter that Joey Styles misidentifies as a Texas Cloverleaf.  I expect better from you, Joey!  I love how they’re working a really good wrestling match, but not at such a fast pace that you can’t digest anything.  Eddie hits a brainbuster that Malenko sells awesomely by convulsing like he just had a seizure.  He apparently still has feeling in his body, because he managed to kick out of the frog splash that followed.  Determined to paralyze Malenko, Eddie dropkicks him off the top turnbuckle to the floor.  Taz and Eddie hit a dropkick Doomsday Device.  That’s kind of neat.  Another Malenko/Eddie exchange with another misidentified Sharpshooter.  Have I forgotten what a Texas Cloverleaf is?  Okay, I googled it.  Looks like I’m the idiot.  Sorry, Joey.  Scorpio hits a dive to the floor.  Malenko tries to do one, but appears to lose his nerve and goes with an elbow smash off the apron.  More dives.  Paul E. hits Scorpio with the cell phone.  Taz hits a head-arm suplex for the pin.  State appointed referee Bill Alfonso orders the match restarted.  Scorpio superkicks Taz and Malenko hits the Tiger Driver on Eddie.  Alfonso fast counts the double pin to give it to Malenko and Scorpio in about 20 minutes.  This was pretty damned good, much to the surprise of no one.

ECW World Television Championship Match: “The Shooter” Dean Malenko (c) vs. Eddie Guerrero (Hardcore TV, July 28, 1995).  This match is great.  Seeing wrestlers of this caliber bust their asses for the sake of having a good match reminds me why I love professional wrestling.  Guerrero catches Malenko with a jackknife hold for the pin to recapture the title 11:47.

Joey Styles puts over Cactus Jack, always my favorite face of Foley.

Cactus Jack vs. “The Franchise” Shane Douglas (CyberSlam, 2/17/96).  Douglas jumps Cactus, who is wearing a jacket and tie for some reason.  That quickly goes, but Cactus is wearing a shirt underneath.  Good.  I’ve never seen Mick Foley shirtless, and I never want to.  The referee is Brian Hildebrand (aka Mark Curtis), God rest him.  Cactus is wearing the “Forgive me, Uncle Eric” shirt that I remember reading about in his first book.  Joey notes that Cactus didn’t come to wrestle tonight, hence the jacket, tie, and cowboy boots.  They brawl.  Crutches, guardrails, and chairs come into play.  Douglas hits a dive from the top rope into the crowd onto Cactus.  I’ve never seen that out of him.  Cactus does the “spit in the air and catch it in his mouth” bit, which is disgusting.  Joey Styles calls it “Vintage Cactus Jack” here in 1996, so fuck you, Michael Cole.  The referee hands Douglas an international object, which Douglas clocks Cactus with.  They’re handcuffs!  Douglas handcuffs Cactus and picks up a chair.  Cactus tries to fight back, but gets murdered in the face with a chair not as badly as he did with The Rock at Royal Rumble 1999, but still…  Cactus calls for help from Vince McMahon (this was right before Foley went to the WWF).  Since Vince doesn’t come out to help, Cactus calls for Mikey Whipwreck.  Douglas is trying to make Foley say “I Quit.”  So this really IS like Rumble ’99.  Douglas locks in a figure-four leglock.  Mikey Whipwreck runs in with a chair and… murders Cactus in the face with it.  Hildebrand counts the pin while Cactus is still in the figure-four in 15:42.  This was fun.

“Lion Heart” Chris Jericho vs. 2 Cold Scorpio (The Doctor Is In, 8/3/96).  There’s too much dancing in Scorpio’s entrance for my enjoyment.  I don’t know anything about dancing, so I don’t know if it’s even good or not.  This must have been one of Jericho’s last matches before going to WCW.  Good wrestling here.  Jericho goes a really wonky submission hold that even Joey can’t identify.  Crowd chants “This show sucks!”  I have no idea why.  They do some near falls.  Scorpio kicks Jericho out of the ring to the floor and says he’s going to finish him.  Jericho stays in the game, though.  Jericho tries to spring off the top and hit Scorpio on the apron, but eats the floor instead.  Scorpio hits a diving leg drop that I thought might be the finish, but Jericho’s got some fight left.  Jericho hits his rebound from the turnbuckle into a dropkick to the apron deal.  There should be an easier way to say that.  Scorpio hits a sunset flip powerbomb off the top that wins i… NO!  OMGWTF JERICHO KICKED OUT.  More counters and near falls.  They do some mildly crazy bumps, such as when Jericho powerslams Scorpio off the top rope.  Scorpio hits a Tombstone Piledriver and a Shooting Star press for the pin in 19:58.  Okay, yeah, this was pretty good.

Joey Styles talks about Sabu.

Tables & Ladders Match for the ECW World Tag Team Championship: The Eliminators (c) vs. Sabu & Rob Van Dam (CyberSlam, 2/22/97).  Saturn says the winners of this match will be the best team in the world.  That’s a stretch.  Tables and ladders are legal in this match, so of course, RVD and Saturn start with back and forth wrestling while the partners stand politely on the apron.  They start bringing in the plunder and taking crazy bumps at around the 7 minute mark.  With these bumps into ladders, it’s no wonder Perry Saturn has always been a bit touched in the head.  Saturn splashes Van Dam off a ladder.  Sabu kicks the ladder into Kronus, then puts him through a table at ringside.  Joey with the classic “OH MY GOD!”  The Eliminators keep the title when Kronus pins RVD after 2 Total Eliminations in 20:40.  Wild and fun.

And now, a brief digression.  I was chatting with a friend on Facebook (shout out, Shawn!) about memories of early 2000s wrestling and the time that Triple H defended the WWF title against TAKA Michinoku on Raw popped into my head.  I searched YouTube, and…

WWF Championship Match: Triple H (c) (w/ Shane McMahon & WWF Women’s Champion Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley) vs. TAKA Michinoku (w/ Funaki & The Acolytes) (RAW IS WAR, 4/10/00).  TAKA is a mystery opponent.  He hires the Acolyte Protection Agency to watch his back and they immediately run off Shane McMahon.  This match is all kinds of fun.  TAKA gets his shine and Jim Ross convinces you that he has a shot to win the WWF title.  It doesn’t help that Hunter is being a real shit ass to referee Earl Hebner.  Earl lets it go when Funaki dropkicks Triple H into the APA and the APA beat the hell out of him.  Vince and Shane McMahon come out and distract the Acolytes.  The Big Boss Man and Bull Buchanan Pearl Harbor TAKA’s protectors, and Hunter hits the Pedigree for the pin in 5:53.  The dastardly heels put the boots to The Acolytes.  Man, this was fun and brought back fond memories of being a 12 year old WWF mark.

I’ve had a rough week and felt pretty miserable about life a few hours ago.  This heaping does of pro wrestling nostalgia was exactly what I needed.  I hope to find some free time again soon to watch the rest of the ECW set and the new CM Punk release.

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