November, 18th 1995
Well, here we are. The legendary November To Remember 95 ECW supercard. I've seen a match or two from this show, and I've read over the results before, but it's never really clicked just how much of a landmark show this is, not only for ECW, but for professional wrestling altogether.
It's been a real pleasure to watch through these ECW 1995 tapes. The promotion gradually evolved through the year into a damn beast, and every show, every storyline, every character all built up to this one show. The four episodes of Hardcore TV that proceeded this show have me pretty hyped to finally sit down and watch through the whole thing. The November Rain video at the end of the last show was just a spectacular piece that highlighted pretty much the entire year of 1995 for ECW. Before we dig in to this 4 hour wrestling mega-slam of a show, lets briefly go over the storylines that led up to this pivotal event.
First and foremost the main storyline running into this show started when Shane Douglas was screwed out of the ECW World title by Woman and The Sandman in the spring. Douglas brought in Pennsylvania State Athletic Commission referee Bill Alphonso. Alphonso tried to take the hardcore out of ECW, and he got under the skin of the fans by helping a few of the heels along the way. Shane Douglas was "Fired" by Todd Gordon, but Alphonso informed him that he was not an ECW employee, and wouldn't be going anywhere. Bill Alphonso drew tremendous heat from the ECW fans by wreaking havoc on the promotion throughout the year, making life a living hell for ECW commissioner Todd Gordon. Gordon and Alphonso would slug it out in a highly anticipated match(7 months in the making) with Beulah as special guest referee. Why? Because she's smoking hot. That's why.
Taz was repackaged from "The Tasmaniac" into a sawed off "Third Stiener Brother" type of shoot wrestler in the spring of 95. Just weeks after his repackaging, Taz suffered a legitimate neck injury during a tag match. Taz would make various non wrestling appearances throughout the rest of the year, and was given the role of special guest referee for a match on tonight's show.
Tommy Dreamer's feud with Stevie Richards from late 94 boiled over into 1995, and took an interesting twist in January when Stevie brought in Raven. Raven was a kid who was friends with Tommy Dreamer in summer camp when they were kids. Dreamer dropped Raven like a bad habbit to be closer to the "Cool Kids", essentially turning his back on Raven, who was an ugly snot nosed nerd. Throughout the year Raven has put together various factions of underlings to throw at Dreamer. First it was jobbers Tony Stetson and Johnny Hotbody, who Dreamer destroyed in a "Generation X Gauntlet Match" in March. Later it was the Pit Bulls for a brief period, then it was the fumbling Dudley family. After the Gen X Guantlet match, Raven handcuffed Dreamer to the ropes, and busted him open like a stuck pig. Raven brought in another character from their past later on in the year. Beulah Mcgillicutty was a girl that Dreamer abandoned in Summer camp in order to hang with the cooler clique. Beulah was a fat zit faced slob in Summer camp who grew up to be a penthouse playmate, and had been brought to ECW by Raven to get revenge on Dreamer. Beulah cost Dreamer a match against Raven, and was given a receipt on the very next ECW show when Dreamer gave her the infamous pantyshot piledriver. The Raven character was built up as a ruthless, vicious heel that always managed to get the upper hand on Dreamer with cowardly tactics, not because he was scared, but because he was smart enough to get others to do his work for him via "Mind Games". Raven turned the "Chicken Shit Heel" psychology upside down in ECW in 1995. Dreamer got some help during the Summer from Luna Vachon. Luna helped Dreamer finally get his hands on Dreamer at the Heatwave 95 show when Tommy cornered Raven in a steel cage and delivered "The Chair Shot Heard 'Round The World". Raven got back at Dreamer at the next show by getting inside the head of Dreamer's good friend, ECW fan favorite, and highly gullible, mentally unstable Cactus Jack.
Cactus Jack turned on Dreamer in a six man tag match to side with Raven. Raven had convinced Cactus to denounce all Hardcore Wrestling, and this turned into a storyline all in itself. Cactus blamed the fans for ending Ray Stephens and Dynamite Kid's careers early with their blood thirst. He vowed to punish them by not giving them their moneys worth in his performances. Cactus took it even further by turning into a WCW mark, just months after WCW had "raided" ECW of their finest wrestlers. Tommy Dreamer brought in Terry Funk to help drag the hardcore back out of Cactus, and an all star tag team main event was set up for this show between Tommy & Funk vs Raven & Cactus. Just stop and think about that for a second. Tommy Dreamer and Terry Funk against Raven and Cactus Jack. What a fucking dream match. Jesus.
And then there was Mikey Whipreck. ECW did nothing with Whipreck until the fall when he was suddenly thrust into a feud with Heavyweight Champ The Sandman(with Woman). Whipreck won a battle royal to earn a shot at the belt. Whipreck had a brutal series of matches against The Sandman. Whipreck got closer and closer to beating the Sandman, but lost the first couple of matches. Whipreck finally got a pin over The Sandman in the "Gangstas Paradise" six man steel cage match. Whipreck finally won the strap with a little help from Steve Austin. Austin suffered a few injuries while in WCW in early 1995. While out, Austin was fired over the phone. Steve Austin was brought to ECW, and immediately thrust into the World Title picture. Austin would come out multiple times insulting both Whipreck and Sandman before their matches. Austin carried Woman out of the Arena on his shoulder prior to the Sandman's ladder match agianst Mikey. Without Woman in the Arena, Whipreck was finally able to upset The Sandman and win the strap. Sandman went on a rampage after losing his belt, interfering in matches caning everyone down. Sandman helped 2 Cold Scorpio win a match against Rocco Rock of Public Enemy where both the TV and Tag titles were on the line during his drunken, frustrated rampage. Scorpio offered one of the belts to Sandman, and he accepted. Sandman and Scorpio are set to face Public Enemy tonight with all titles on the line, and the man that gets the pinfall earns a shot at Mikey later on in the evening.
Last but not least was the feud going on between Rey Mysterio and Psycosis. The two men had two matches with each other in ECW up to this point, with their 2/3 falls match being the better of the two(the match that appears in the extras of "The Rise and Fall of ECW"). The two young luchadores were set to complete the trilogy tonight when they face off in a Mexican Death match on this show.
You got all that?
Now lets get on with the show.
Don E. Allen vs The Broad Street Bully
Don E. and the Bully circle each other as the crowd gives them both shit. Two small jobber guys. Buh Buh Ray Dudley is brought out to do the opening ceremonies. Buh Buh comes out with his Dudley brothers, dressed in a white tux.
The crowd is giving Buh Buh quite a bit of love. He talks just fine for a minute telling everybody that he's no longer a stuttering baffoon. He talks just fine up until the "Lets Get Ready To Rumble" line, then he starts stuttering "RU-RU-RU-RU".
He can't say Rumble. He says fuck it, and starts beating the shit out of Don E. and The Bully.
Buh Buh Bombs on both jobbers. Buh Buh pins The Bully. Sure, why the hell not?
The crowd starts chanting "WHATS! YOUR! NAME!".
Buh Buh is over now.
Pretty cool introduction segment. Nothing special, but nothing terrible here either. It's pretty cool to see Buh Buh here just beginning to get over with the fans considering how the rest of his career would play out. Looking at him here it's hard to believe he would go on to become the top heel in ECW, a big part of the epic TLC series of tag team matches in the WWF, including the epic on perhaps the greatest Wrestlemania of all time(X-7), not to mention his entertaining "Bully Ray" run in TNA right now. This was where he started. The humble beginnings of Bully Ray. Who'da thunk it?
After the match Paul Heyman is shown in the ring asking for the lights to be dimmed. The lights go out, and when they come back on Sabu is standing in the ring. The fans go crazy. Heyman extends his hand towards Sabu for a handshake, and Sabu hesitates for a brief moment. They shake hands and the crowd gets louder.
This is Sabu's return to ECW after his falling out with Heyman over the Three Way Dance show that took place earlier in 1995. Sabu had already made commitments to Japan, and was unable to make the Three Way Dance show, which was heavily promoted by ECW as one of their biggest shows up to that point. Heyman turned the fans against Sabu in a vehement tirade prior to the Three Way Dance show before firing him. Sabu would wrestle in WCW for a short period of time before making his way back to ECW here. So this is a pretty big deal at the time. ECW had been losing a lot of guys to WCW and WWF, and for Sabu to come back was pretty huge for ECW fans at this time. Seeing the looks on the faces of the fans when they turn the lights back on is excellent. Pretty awesome little emotional ECW moment when Sabu and Heyman shake hands.
Konnan vs Jason Knight(With Special Guest Referee Taz)
Konnan comes out with some really goofy looking gear and a strange looking mask on.
Taz makes his way to the ring wearing referee pinstripes. Taz says that he was not given clearance by ECW to wrestle because he was an insurance risk. Jason interrupts Taz, and tells him he's tired of listening to Taz's mouth. Jason taunts Taz, slapping him on his shoulder. Taz tells him to get his fucking hands off of him. Jason continues taunting Taz.
Taz asks both of the competitors if they are ready to go before busting Jason over the head with a punch. Taz orders for the bell, and Konnan drops Jason on his head with a nasty looking Crucifix Powerbomb. Konnan pins Jason after about 10 seconds.
There is just nothing here worthy of a high rating. This was pretty much just Taz blowing off his little feud with Jason without actually wrestling. Taz was feuding with Jason during most of his time out of the ring due to his neck injury. Overall I just think the show could have done without this segment. Nobody cared about Jason, and by the end of this show nobody even remembered that Taz had a feud with the guy.
Stevie Richards vs El Puerto Ricano
Stevie Richards comes out, and fucks around with the fans on the front row. He walks up to a fat guy with blue hair and black makeup around his eyes. The Blue Meanie makes his ECW debut by giving Stevie a present.
Stevie opens up the present, and it's a......Flock of Seagulls t-shirt.
Stevie loves it. He tells the Meanie to jump over the railing. Stevie gives the Meanie a big hug. Joey says "Get the Flock out of here will ya'".
Ricano hits Stevie with a surprise suicide plancha. Ricano lands a really nice springboard moonsault off of the top rope. He lands a missile dropkick on Stevie, and then hits the Meanie with a really good looking plancha through the ropes. Ricano goes up top to hit Stevie again, but Stevie hits him on the way down with his kick.
Richards gets a powerbomb before dropping him across the ropes with a vertical suplex. Another powerbomb. The Blue Meanie comes in. Meanie does a moonsault off of the top, but Ricano moves out of the way. Stevie gets mad, and rolls Meanie out of the ring. Ricano with a rollup for 2. Stevie ko's Ricano with a Superkick for the 1, 2, 3 after about 8 minutes.
Stevie drags the Meanie to the back by the hair.
This was close to being good. Ricano looks a lot better than any jobber has any right to be. He did some pretty good looking moves in this match, and kept the pace moving quickly. Some weird stuff with the Meanie, but I liked what it did for Richards character. He was just a goofball lackey, who now apparently has a lackey of his own. A lackey with a lackey. Make sense? Didn't think so.
The Pitbulls vs The Eliminators
The Eliminators, who are my #2 all time favorite tag team, are just in a really weird phase here. They are very young and green. Saturn has long hair. Kronus is rather chunky. They are wearing these weird looking LOD knock-off shoulder pads. They haven't appeared in ECW much at all up to this point. They were tossed around by the Stieners, and traded jabs with the Pit Bulls in promos on Hardcore TV up to this show. Not much has been invested in this feud. Jason was the Pit Bulls manager earlier in the year, but he sold their contracts to Raven. Jason tried to get the Pit Bulls to take him back, but they turned him down in favor of their "Beast Master" Francine. Jason hit Francine with a kick, but before the Pit Bulls could destory him, they were attacked by Jason's newest clients, The Eliminators.
Something interesting about the Pitbulls that was going on at this time was a serious investigation by DEA over them selling steroids and marijuana. They were busted by an undercover officer, and were awaiting the case to be brought up to trial for most of the time they were in ECW. By the time the case finally made it to court, where they were convicted, Heyman pretty much stopped using them outside of a few appearances here and there.
Francine in this leather outfit is just such a beautiful sight. Good god almighty.
Pretty awesome staredown. These are four pretty tough dudes in the ring right here. This ought to be good.
Pitbull 1 and Saturn start it off. Saturn slams and punches on Pitbull 1 for a while. Pitbull 1 no sells Saturn's offense, and takes the momentum of the match. Pitbull 1 does his martial arts kick, and tags out to Pitbull 2. The Pitbulls execute a swell looking tandem maneuver where Pitbull 1 hits a drop toe hold, and Pitbull 2 flies off with an elbow drop across Saturn's back.
Saturn tags out to Kronus. Kronus and Pitbull 2 fight it out for a bit. Kronus tags Saturn back in. Saturn kicks Pitbull 2 out of the ring to the apron, and does one of those Chris Jericho springboard moves out of the ring to the apron. Pitbull 2 is knocked off the apron. Saturn gets back into the ring, and springboards off of Kronus' hands for a moonsault over the top rope down onto Pitbull 2. Pretty awesome looking move.
The Eliminators work together to beat on Pitbull 2 in the ring. Kronus lands a somersault legdrop onto Pitbull 2. Kronus with a nice belly to back suplex. Kronus opts to keep beating on Pitbull 2 rather than go for the pinfall. Jason takes a cheap shot at Pitbull 2. Pitbull 2 misses a splash, and goes over to the outside. Pitbull 2 has a pretty nasty cut on his elbow from the fall.
Saturn with his elbow drop, one of the best in the game. Joey Styles gives us an "OOOHHH YEAH!". Nice.
The Eliminators isolate Pitbull 2 to control the momentum of the match. Saturn sets Pitbull 2 on the top rope, and goes for a move, but gets Superbombed off the top. Kronus distracts the ref, and Jason comes in for a legdrop on Pitbull 2.
Pitbull 2 gets the hot tag to Pitbull 1, and he cleans house.
All four men enter the ring and all hell breaks loose. Saturn gets a nice Tiger Bomb on Pitbull 2, but Pitbull 1 breaks up the pinfall. Pitbull 2 lifts Kronus up onto his shoulders, and Pitbull 1 does a flying clothesline to take him over the top rope. Pitbull 1 gets a guillatine on Kronus for the sure pin, but Jason sticks his nose in the match again.
Pitbulls drop Jason with a slam. The Eliminators blindside the Pitbulls. Pitbulls overwhelm them, and Superbomb Kronus for the win.
11:10 is the official time. Jason tackles Francine, and forces himself onto her. The Pitbulls get their hands on Jason, and nail him in the face with a chair.
The Eliminators attack the Pit Bulls with chairs.
Total Elimination on both Pit Bulls before the Eliminators make their exit.
Oh man, Francine's ass in this outfit HAS TO BE SEEN!
That was a fun tag team match. Hard to really find anything wrong with it. It was a much better match than I had anticipated to be honest. I wasn't expecting much. Both teams worked together really well, and it was solidly booked. The Pitbulls remained strong looking, but the Eliminators showcased some good looking moves, and made a splash with the attack at the end. The Total Elimination move is just about as devastating of a tag team move there is. I love it. This was a solid tag team match, and Francine really makes this worth tracking down to see it at least once in your lifetime. You can thank me later.
Mexican Death Match: Rey Misterio Jr. vs Psycosis
Mexican Death Match rules are basically a 10 count that the wrestler has to beat after each pinfall or submission.
Psicosis comes out first, and the crowd gives him a nice "RUDO! RUDO!" chant. Rudo is the spanish term for heel(Technicos are the faces).
Rey Mysterio comes out next to Metallica's "Sad But True".
What a great entrance tune for him. Much better than the "Booyaka" or whatever it is that he comes out to these days.
Sign Guy holds up a sign on the front row that says "TBS: The Cartoon Network"
Joel Gertner does Spanish introductions. Gertner is fluent in Spanish, and rolls his R's nicely here.
The crowd is hyped up for this match. They have an "E! C! DUB!" chant going before the bell even rings. The bell rings, and they go at each other with sick speed. Unbelievable little exchange here where they move so fast it's almost hard for your eyes to follow. Rey leaps off of the top rope with a front flip into a hurricanrana for the first pinfall like 20 seconds into the match.
Psicosis is up at 5. Mysterio hurricanranas Psicosis out of the ring, and rearranges the guardrail. Psicosis whips Mysterio into the railing. Mysterio tries to spring off of the rail, but he slips and falls down. Psicosis with a chair shot, and back into the ring they go. Psicosis with a missile dropkick and a moonsault for a pinfall.
Mysterio favors his leg, and struggles to get up. Mysterio barely gets up at 9. Psicosis begins working Rey over with various slams. Psicosis just slams the shit out of Rey with modified powerbombs for another pinfall. Rey struggles up to his knees at 9. Psicosis continues to beat the shit out of Rey. Psicosis slams Rey into the turnbuckles with an inverted powerslam before going outside for a chair. Psicosis throws the chair down without using it, and slams Rey into the corner with the same move. Psicosis does a nice "Tumbleweed" Inverted Somesault twisting legdrop for another pinfall. Mysterio barely beats the 10 count again. Psicosis with a dropkick to the chest. Psicosis continues to grind on Rey at a slow pace. Psicosis goes to the outside to get the chair. Psicosis with a DDT on the chair. Psicosis sets the chair on Rey's back, and hits him with a moonsault for another 3 count.
Rey clutches his back, and struggles to get up again. Rey just barely manages to beat the count again, getting up at 9. Psicosis hits Rey with a dropkick to the knee before tossing the chair into his mid section. Psicosis goes up top for another moonsault, but Rey props the chair up on his knees. Psicosis hits the chair. Rey gets up and hits Psicosis with the chair. Pretty good psychology here with Rey playing possum and milking the 10 counts, letting Psicosis wear himself out. Now Rey has his way with Psicosis, knocking him out of the ring. Rey knocks Psicosis out into the crowd with a crossbody press. Rey goes back up to the apron, and does a fucking bad ass moonsault plancha off the top into the crowd.
Rey hits Psicosis across the back with a chair. Psicosis retreats through the crowd as Rey follows him. They head towards the front door and back to the ringside area. Rey hits him with a chair shot to the face before knocking him back over the railing towards the ring. Rey hits Psicosis with the chair again before knocking him back over the rail into the crowd. Rey beats Psicosis around the bleechers up to the soundstage/Eagles Nest balcony area. Rey hits Psicosis in the face with the chair again. Rey climbs up the balcony, and leaps off onto Psicosis with a hurricanrana for a 3 count.
Rey goes back to the ring. Psicosis almost gets up at 5, but he stumbles back down to the floor. Rey wins a fan-fucking-tastic match.
Jason comes out. Jason tells Rey about how Konnan attacked him earlier in the evening. Jason compliments Rey's match. Jason asks to be Rey's manager. Rey turns Jason down. Jason calls Rey a little bitch, and asks what his problem is. Rey drops Jason. Out come the Eliminators.
Eliminators beat the shit out of Rey Mysterio until all of a sudden.......
The Eliminators attack 911. Rey flies halfway across the ring to the top of Kronus' shoulders for a Hurricanrana. 911 gives the Eliminators a nasty double chokeslam. Rey jumps up on top of 911's shoulders and the crowd goes crazy.
First of all what a great match. Rey and Psicosis put on a classic. It wasn't perfect, and I don't think it was as good as thier 2/3 Falls Match that took place in October of 95, but it was a damn fine match. Arguably one of the best in ECW history. The segment at the end bumped it up a bit. 911 is just awesome, and I really like him teaming up with Rey. They made a great pair for some reason. Really everything was here for this match. The action, the selling, the psychology all top notch. Just a couple of awkward moments in the match that keep it from getting a 10.
ECW Tag/TV Championship Match: Sandman and 2 Cold Scorpio (ch) vs The Public Enemy
We get a big long drawn out entrance from Sandman, Scorpio and Woman. No Metallica this time, Scorpio's "Whoop There It Is" music plays on for what seems like an eternity.
PE comes out, and all of the arms in the Arena start waiving back and forth. We are going through the introductions for all of the wrestlers, and I'm just now realizing that the usual ECW ring announcer, the one that has been doing it since the first shows I reviewed from 1992, Bob Artese, is nowhere to be found for the first time. Joel Gertner is doing all of the ring announcing for some reason. Hmm. Interesting.
Something I've realized about 2 Cold Scorpio during the introductions that I kind of like. Scorpio is just always cracking smiles like he's just having a hard time keeping from busting out laughing. He just usually always has this look on his face like he's just overwhelmed by the goofiness of what is going on around him, and he's fighting off laughter. I don't know if that makes any sense, probably not.
The match gets started, and the crowd starts a "PLEASE DON'T GO!" chant. By this time it was obvious to everyone that Public Enemy were in their final days in ECW. They would go on to wrestle a dark match at Survivor Series against the Smoking Gunns just a few days after this event. Eventually they would sign with WCW in early 96.
2 Cold Scorpio challenges Rocco Rock to a dance off. Oh my.
Scorpio and Rocco Rock have a dance off. They dance to this song:
This is actually kind of funny. The Sandman starts dancing, and the Arena goes crazy. Pretty funny stuff. The crowd starts chanting for Woman to dance, and she does a little jiggle. Totally out of character for her, but ah why not? Cute little moment where everyone just kind of broke character a little bit to have some fun with the crowd and each other. A bit on the corny side, but yeah.
PE double team the Sandman and Scorpio, running them out of the ring. They signal to the soundman to hit their music again, and start dancing and celebrating with the crowd as they all wave their hands back and forth to the music.
"Now somehow I just can't imagine the Public Enemy wrestling anywhere else but here in ECW."
Rock and Grunge continue to celebrate along with the crowd as if this were their last show. Sandman and Rocco Rock finally get this thing started after all of the malarkey. Johnny Grunge hiptosses Sandman over the top to the outside. All hell breaks loose. All four men grab steel chairs, and go after each other in the ring. Quite a chaotic little moment there. Scorpio and Johnny Grunge brawl up towards the entrance area and back down to the ring. Rocco Rock hits The Sandman with a frying pan on the outside of the ring. Rocco Rock hits The Sandman with a pumpkin pie.
Just a wild brawl here with Johnny Grunge a bloody mess. Woman helps The Sandman recover, and pushes him back into the ring. They gradually go back into their positions to make this a traditional tag match. Rocco Rock hits Sandman with a flying headscissors and a tilt a whirl snap mare. Johnny Grunge is bleeding very badly.
Scorpio gets tagged in. Scorpio works Rocco Rock over in the ring until he misses a standing dropkick. Rock and Scorpio go through a pretty good little sequence where Rock hits a springboard moonsault off of the second ropes to land on his feet. Scorpio lands a Thrust Kick and a Double Underhook Powerbomb. Grunge breaks up the pinfall multiple times. Scorpio tries a backflip splash, but Rocco Rock gets the knees up. Scorpio prevents Rocco from tagging out, and gets a tag to Sandman. Sandman comes in and beats on Rocco Rock until Johnny Grunge runs in. Woman hits Rocco Rock with the Cane.
Sandman and Johnny Grunge fight to the outside. Woman hits Rocko again. Grunge sets up a table on the outside. Grunge backdrops Sandman onto the table, but it doesn't break. Sandman reverses a suplex to put Grunge through the table face first. Rocco Rock does a slingshot somersault plancha over the top onto the Sandman. Rocco Rock leaps up onto Sandmans shoulders in the ring, and lands a pretty damn good looking hurricanrana. Scorpio lands his moonsault off the top rope and a spinning heel kick. Grunge holds Scorpio up for Rocko to hit his Drive By somersault senton, but Scorpio moves out of the way. Rocko hits Grunge, and the Sandman falls on top of him for the pinfall.
Sandman and Scorpio retain the tag titles, and the Sandman earns a shot at Whipreck's world strap later on in the evening. The Sandman lays down and out on the canvas until Scorpio revives him by pouring beer into his mouth. The Sandman gets up dancing like the corpse in Weekend at Bernies. Scorpio and Sandman hug it out, and make their exit.
Man this thing is just sloppy as hell. No getting around that. It had some goofy moments altogether, and it had some cool moments too. Public Enemy used a lot of moves here in these ECW '95 shows that I didn't really know they could do. There just wasn't really any feeling to this match. Scorpio phoned it in, and the Sandman was...well, The Sandman. With that said it wasn't like this was just a terrible, unwatchable segment. Just didn't have enough going for it to get any higher of a rating.
Bill Alphonso vs Todd Gordon(With special guest referee Beulah Mcgillicutty)
Prior to the match we get a pretty nice recap video of this entire storyline. Pretty much everything that I wrote about in the intro shown in video form.
Beulah comes out looking smoking hot as usual. This woman is a 10/10. One of the hottest women in wrestling history.
Todd Gordon comes out with taped fists. Gordon high fives the fans in the front row when all of a sudden Bill Alphonso hits him from behind. Alphonso beats the shit out of Todd Gordon in the front row. Beulah screams at Fonzie to bring it to the ring, and Fonzie gets up in her face. Bill Alphonso is really on fire here with this performance. The way he was hitting Todd Gordon and the way he was just acting is both hilarious and awesome.
Oh lord, Fonzie floors Beulah with a clothesline. It's not funny, but damn. This dude is just such a fucking sleezeball it is hilarious to me. Fonzie is perfect in this role.
Todd Gordon starts fighting with Alphonso. They trade punches for a while. Gordon drops Alphonso with punches. Fonzie gets back up and the fight is on.
This is fucking awesome.
Todd blasts Fonzie with punches and a clothesline. Fonzie with a low blow. Fonzie starts beating the shit out of Gordon, and the fans throw trash into the ring. Gordon hits Fonzie with a cookie sheet and slams his head into a chair. Alphonso is bleeding. Gordon beats a bloodied Fonzie around the ring. Gordon busts Fonzie with a frying pan. Gordon goes for the pin, but nobody is there to count.
Taz comes out in his ref outfit. Gordon hooks the leg, and Taz counts to two. Taz pulls Todd Gordon up to his feet, and busts him in the face with a punch. Taz pulls Fonzie's body over Todd Gordon, and counts the three count for the pinfall.
Taz has turned heel. The fans are shocked.
Immediately the fans all start chanting "SABU! SABU! SABU!"
This is what Taz says:
"You can chant his fucking name all night, he ain't coming.
Not one card.
Not one letter.
Not one phone call.
Tommy Dreamer nearly gets his fingers busted off of his hand, and everybody's crying the blues over Tommy Dreamer.
Terry Funk (Censored) right here in this building, and everybody's crying the blues over the legend Terry Funk.
...And then, the almighty, your god, the king himself, Sabu, nearly gets his neck snapped in half by Chris Benoit, and everybody's PISSING AND FUCKING MOANING ABOUT FUCKING SABU!"
The fans all start chanting "SABU! SABU! SABU!". Taz asks them:
"What about ME!?
WHAT ABOUT TAZ?!
Yeah, fuck Taz right? No, FUCK YOU!
...And then my buddy Paul Heyman. My buddy Paul Heyman.
"Hey Taz, take your time brother. Don't worry, you'll get back in the ring real soon. You'll get back to work real soon."
Yeah, you see Paul E. The problem right here, my father ain't no fat fucking jew lawyer that paid my way through life!
I got to pay my fucking bills.
Who cares about my family?
Who cares about my house?
Who cares about my daughter?
I'll tell you who cares about me, and that's Bill Alphonso.
Bill Alphonso wants to put food on my table.
Bill Alphonso wants to put money in my pocket."
The fans start chanting "SUCK! HIS! DICK!"
"The way I see it, you people don't care about me. You don't care about Bill Alphonso. Well we don't give a flying fuck about you!"
That my friends is a heel turn. Pretty deep shit.
Taz threatens the fans in the front row as they taunt him. Taz challenges the fans to come into the ring. Taz lays down on his back, and calls out the fans. Pretty good heat.
The way the storyline got to this point just made this the perfect segment. Loved Taz's promo. One of the most underrated guys on the microphone of all time in my humble opinion. The match with Alphonso and Gordon was fantastic. A lot of fun. Watching this segment on it's own just wouldn't do it one ounce of justice. You really have to understand this storyline to really get why I'm giving this a 10. Turning Taz heel to partner with Bill Alphonso was just brilliant. Taz is about to go through a fucking tear through the ECW over the next year and a half. This moment right here was the beginning of perhaps my favorite pro wrestling character of all time. I'm really going to enjoy reviewing these next couple of shows just to take a closer look at his rise.
ECW World Championship: Mikey Whipwreck(C) vs Steve Austin
Alright so The Sandman earned the right to this shot earlier in the evening. Sandman poses in the entrance isle with Woman when all of a sudden Steve Austin bum rushes him from behind. Austin takes Sandman out in the isle, takes a swig of his beer, and makes his way to the ring ready for action. Austin's entrance music here is just so weird.
Sandman is taken away by medics. Austin calls out Whipreck. Mikey is in over his head. His "Loser" entrance music hits the speakers, and the champ comes out to the ring. '
Mikey's character is just a 19 year old babyface strait edge kid who is the perennial underdog. Austin tells Whipreck that he doesn't belong in the same ring or in the same building. Austin tells Whipreck that tonight for a short while, he is Eric Bischoff.
Austin attacks Whipreck before the introductions. Austin drops Mikey with his trademark punches and stomps.
Sign Guy in the front row holds up a sign that says: "Austin: The Future Has Arrived."
Austin kicks Mikey's ass to the outside of the ring where he whips him into the steel several times before taking it back into the ring. Austin gives Whipreck a big boot and a leg drop. Mikey kicks out. The crowd goes crazy.
Austin tosses Mikey back outside, and takes off his shirt. Austin drops Mikey across the steel on the outside. Mikey gets a reversal, and whips Austin into the steel. Mikey takes to Austin with punches, dropping him to the concrete. Mikey takes Austin back into the ring. Austin lands his "Stun Gun", which was his finisher at the time, which was basically dropping the guy's neck across the ropes.
Mikey kicks out. Austin is frustrated. Mikey catches Austin with a rollup, and nearly rips the tights off of his ass in order to get the winning pinfall. Mikey gets the upset victory with a handful of tights.
Austin beats the shit out of Mikey after the match before storming off in a fit of rage.
First and foremost there was just nothing special at all about the actual match. With hindsight 20/20 this definitely seems like a big "What the FUCK!?" booking call, but at the time it kind of made sense. It was obvious that Austin was out of ECW's league, and on his way up to bigger and better things. Putting the title on him wouldn't have been a good call because he would have had to drop the belt pretty soon after this show. Behind the scenes Heyman actually did want to put the belt on him, but it was Austin's request to lose the match. Austin felt like it would have added an interesting element to this bitter character that he had become. Austin turned this loss into a reason to turn his character into a much more serious, psychotic persona. As if losing to Whipreck pushed him over the edge. Austin came back from this loss with a shaved head, and an edgier attitude. If you really think about it the booking does make sense because Austin had been out of action up to this point for 4 months with his torn tricep injury, so he lost this match due to being a bit rusty. This is just a significant match that adds to the overall greatness of this show. On it's own it was nothing special, but really this was the beginning of Austin's rise. He had finally made his return to the ring after being fired by WCW, and he was on to something with his character that would push the entire pro wrestling industry into the mainstream. The fact that all of that really kind of started here in this grungy little ole bingo hall just amuses me to no end.
Sabu vs Hack Meyers
Alright so this is Sabu's return match. Paul Heyman comes out, and brings Sabu out with an emphatic introduction. Sabu dominates Myers early on with some tame mat based moves. Myers catches Sabu with punches and gets the "SHAH!"'s going. Myers lands his finisher on Sabu, but Heyman gets his foot up on the ropes to break the pinfall. Pretty good little booking there, making Myers look as if he could have actually beat Sabu here.
Sabu lands a legdrop. Myers recovers and lands his "SHAH" punches before getting caught with a DDT from Sabu. They slow this thing down a bunch, and move along at a crawling pace. Sabu lands a dive to the outside, and whips Myers into the steel. Sabu sets up a chair, and lands his "Air Sabu". The crowd is kind of dead at this point. Sabu leaps off the top with a hurricanrana attempt, but Myers slams him with a powerbomb. Myers with a vertical suplex. Myers goes up top, but Sabu follows him up with a victory roll off the top for 2. Myers brings in a chair, and hits Sabu while he's on the top rope. Myers pulls Sabu up top, but Sabu pushes him off down onto the chair. Sabu pulls Hack to the outside with a hurricanrana.
Sabu sets him up on a table, and sets up a chair in the ring. Sabu springs off of the chair with a awesome looking somersault over the top onto Hack to put him through the table. Really good looking table spot. Sabu pushes Hack into the ring for a pinfall, but Hack kicks out. Sabu hits Hack with his Atomic Arabian Facebuster with a chair to finally put Hack away with a pinfall.
Paul Heyman helps Hack Myers get up to his feet. Sabu shakes his hand.
Man this wasn't really a bad match at all. Myers was undoubtedly one of the most popular guys in ECW at this time for some ungodly reason, and this is easily his absolute best match that I've seen up to this point. The table spot was fucking awesome. The match did seem to drag on at times with a real slow pace, but overall nothing really bad. Sabu did look pretty good, and they kept Myers popularity intact, possibly even elevating it a bit with the way he lost. Overall this match wasn't real bad, but it lacked any real intensity or passion from the performers. Both guys did manage to look pretty good though.
Tommy Dreamer & Terry Funk vs Raven & Cactus Jack
Dreamer and Funk coming out together here is an awesome sight. Two hardcore legends for sure. Cactus Jack comes out wearing an air brushed Dungeoun of Doom t-shirt. If you've been paying attention to this storyline this is just fucking brilliant. Hilarious looking shirt with Kamala, The Shark, and The Zodiac drawn on it, and the words Dungeon of Doom in a heart on the back.
Cactus taunts Terry, and wants him to come to the outside of the ring to get it started off. Raven and Cactus take the ring, and keep Dreamer and Funk out of it with kicks and punches. Funk and Dreamer retreat to the isle to discuss their strategy. Dreamer and Funk storm the ring and the fight is on. Funk vs Cactus and Dreamer vs Raven.
Wild sloppy brawl in and out of the ring. Funk hits Cactus with a chair, and throws it into the ring hitting Raven in the back of the head. Shit.
Stevie Richards comes out pushing a shopping cart with a trash can in it. Funk empties the garbage can on Raven in the ring, and beats on him with the objects that fall out of it. Street signs etc. Dreamer takes Stevie for a ride in the cart.
Dreamer gets a VCR from a ringside fan and busts Raven over the head with it. All 4 men brawl in the ring with the weapons sprawled out everywhere. Dreamer beats the shit out of Raven with various weapons. Terry Funk drops the referee for no reason.
Funk takes a golf club to Raven's groin. Raven is busted open bleeding. Cactus brings a chair into the ring, and beats on Dreamer with it. The men continue to brawl in the ring. The fans start chanting "E! C! FUCKING! DUB!". Nice.
They take the fight to the outside where the pace slows down tremendously. Raven is bleeding like a stuck pig. Cactus cuts Terry's arm open with a sharp object. Jeez. Cactus and Raven control the momentum of the match. Raven gives Cactus instructions. Dreamer drops Raven with a DDT, Cactus busts him with a street sign.
Cactus pulls off his Dungeon of Doom shirt to reveal another air brushed t-shirt underneath it.
OH MY GOD!
This shirt says "Forgive me Uncle Eric" on the back of it, and shows a fucking roll on the floor hilarious hand drawn picture of Bischoff's face on the front of it.
Cactus does his WCW YMCA dance, but Dreamer hits him from behind. Dreamer beats the shit out of Cactus in the ring. Cactus and Raven regain the upper hand and go for a pinfall, but the ref is still down. Trash and weapons are scattered all over the ring. Tommy Dreamer is bleeding profusely now.
Bill Alphonso and Taz come out.
Cactus pins Funk with Alphonso doing the count. Funk kicks out at 2. Taz attempts to pin Funk, but Dreamer stops him. Taz and Dreamer stand face to face for a brief moment before Raven drops Dreamer. Taz and Fonzie leave. Dreamer drops Raven with 2 DDT's, a pildedriver on a chair. Dreamer keeps Cactus from entering the ring, and Funk pins Raven for the win.
Dreamer and Funk win after 14:36. Richards comes in and takes a stomach high superkick from Dreamer. Cactus chokes Terry Funk with a wire on the outside. Raven floors Dreamer, and drops a knee into his groin. Cactus continues to beat on Funk in the isle as Raven poses in the ring.
Pretty anticlimactic ending, and some sloppy booking going on with the Taz/Fonzie run in. Would have been better if Taz and Fonzie cost Dreamer and Funk the match, but they just came out and then left without really impacting the match at all. A lot of sloppy brawling, but it was a good sloppy brawl mainly because of the story behind it. I absolutely loved the shirts that Cactus was wearing, so that bumps the overall score of the segment up a bit for me. Not a real bad match, actually one of the better brawls I've seen so far up to this point. Four hardcore legends in a dream match that was pretty much all that one could really expect out of a match like this. It wasn't an epic or anything, but it was a fun given the background leading up to it. On it's own it probably doesn't hold up well. Especially if hardcore brawling is just not your thing.
Man, that was one long motherfucking show. 2 discs. There is just so much that happened I don't know where to start. First of all just the all star who's who of superstars on this show. Austin, Foley, Saturn, Bully Ray, Terry Funk, Rey Mysterio, Stevie Richards, Sabu, I mean this show pretty much had it all for an ECW show. It wasn't the perfect show by any means, but this is pretty close to as good as it is going to get for ECW. It was the pinnacle of a really special time in ECW history. A time that has pretty much been forgotten about. The little window during the fall of 1995 was a really interesting period for ECW. They had some future blockbuster superstars on their roster, and they were starting to look like one of the big boys. The quality matches were there. The promos were some of the best of all time, the characters were revolutionary and way ahead of their time. I think it's safe to say that ECW was the best wrestling promotion in North America in 1995, and that this show is perhaps the best overall wrestling show of 1995. Not only did we have Austin's historic return to the ring after his 4 month layoff due to the torn bicep that got him fired from WCW, but we got a really amazing heel turn from Taz. The beginning of a long running feud with Sabu, who had finally returned after an almost year long hiatus from ECW. Such a pivotal show for ECW, and such a pivotal show for pro wrestling in general at this time. This show was a glimpse into where Pro Wrestling was headed. A glimpse into the future of sports entertainment. The way the storylines all lead up to this show really made it great to me. I would't say this was a better show than Hostile City Showdown 95, but it's definitely up there.