wrestling / Columns

The 411 Wrestling Year-End Awards (Part Four) – The Worst Major Shows of 2020

January 6, 2021 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
Seth Rollins Rey Mysterio Horror Show at Extreme Rules

Welcome back to Part Four of the 411 Wrestling Year-End Awards of 2020! The Year-End Awards have been out for a couple of years but they’re back, and here’s how they work. For the next couple of weeks, we will present our top choices for a particular topic relating to wrestling in 2020. All the writers here on 411 will have the ability to give us their Top 5 on said topic and the end, based on where all of the votes rank on people’s list, we will create an overall Top 5 list. It looks a little like this…

1st – 5
2nd – 4
3rd – 3
4th – 2
5th – 1

Once everyone’s had their say, we will tally the scores and get our overall top 5. Tonight we’re looking at the Worst Major Show or PPV of the year. Let’s get right to it…

Rob Stewart

5. Elimination Chamber
4. Backlash 2020
3. NXT Takeover: In Your House
2. The Horror Show At Extreme Rules

1. WWE Super Showdown 2020 – LET ME PREFACE THIS BY SAYING I THOUGHT 2020 WAS A STAND-OUT YEAR FOR BIG SHOWS. I really did. There are only TWO shows this year I outright disliked, and #3-5 are just some of the shows I thought were GOOD, but a little weaker than the rest. I honestly kept scrolling back and forth after writing down Super Showdown and Extreme Rules. That said, this was another easy call. It HAD to be Super Showdown. Brock squashing Ricochet. Goldberg squashing The Fiend. It was crap booking and only had one decent match. What a mess.

Jeffrey Harris

5. WWE Money in the Bank 2020
4. Monday Night Raw 8.3.20 (Debut of Raw Underground, Debut of Retribution — after WWE announced them ahead of time)
3. Monday Night Raw 1.6.20 (The Lashley and Lana Wedding Night)
2. WWE Super ShowDown 2020

1. The Horror Show at Extreme Rules – Yes, they did the Eye for an Eye match, and it was garbage. WWE actually did a match where the rule was that someone has to get their frelling eyeball removed from their frelling eye socket. I can’t make this up. This was hot garbage. It was horse manure. The main event Swamp Fight was also garbage and more proof that Cinematic Matches, which became buzzworthy due to circumstances in 2020, were an execrable fad and not something to strive for in the wrestling business.

Steve Cook

5. WWE WrestleMania 36 (Night Two)
4. AEW All Out
3. WWE Extreme Rules: The Horror Show
2. WWE Money in the Bank

1. WWE Super Showdown – The Saudi shows are easy choices to make this list every year, but this one in particular definitely earned its spot. Goldberg beating The Fiend in under three minutes wasn’t exactly what people were hoping for, in fact, Goldberg wrestling The Fiend in a PPV main event at all wasn’t exactly what people were hoping for. The other world championship match featured Brock Lesnar beating Ricochet in under two minutes, which was pretty predictable and ended the idea of Ricochet being a seriously featured performer in WWE for the foreseeable future. At least the random Undertaker appearance to beat AJ Styles in a gauntlet match led to something, but other than that this show was completely forgettable.

Len Archibald

5. WWE Backlash
4. WWE Payback
3. WWE Money in the Bank
2. WWE The Horror Show at Extreme Rules

1. WWE Super Showdown – The basis for WWE’s annual trip to Saudi delivering the worst show of 2020 can be described as merely a two word review: Super Shitdown.

Vince McMahon: Goddammit, pal – where did they print that?
Kevin Dunn: That’s not real is it?

But I digress. Sweet Saudi Money 2020 was a glorified house show with a dumpster fire of a finale between Goldberg and The Fiend that did more damage to his aura than being set on fire by Randy Orton ever could. Can we get a vaccine for this as well?

Jake Chambers

5. WWE Super ShowDown
4. AEW All Out
3. WWE Elimination Chamber
2. WWE Money in the Bank

1. WWE Payback – For the past two decades, there is always a couple times a year where I just have to check my spoiled fandom. If I found out there was going to be a bonus PPV one week after SummerSlam in the WWF era, I would have Hulk-ed out of my Tito Santana shirt and done Hindu squats in front of the cool guys playing through Dragon’s Liar at the mall arcade. But when World Wrestling ENTERTAINMENT adds a surprise PPV to their already saturated PPV and live TV schedule, it was so pointlessly just “there” enough to make me not care so much before and afterwards that it took me days to even register what happened. And I’m still not sure why they created this PPV, why they couldn’t have done the main event at SummerSlam, or why they didn’t even try to put on any content that we couldn’t see on weekly TV (which I already rarely watch anymore)? Was this PPV part of some sort of Ponzi scheme? Should the SEC be investigating this? When is the Dark Side of the Ring episode coming out about Payback 2020? I’ve already had more fun typing this up than I did watching that show… and I use all 10 early-onset-arthritic fingers to type on a keyboard like some grizzled, authentic Ronnie Garvin midcard match, not two thumbs on a slick screen like an empty-headed, illogical Fiend main event.

Tony Acero

5. WWE Payback
4. WWE Backlash
3. WWE Money in the Bank
2. WWE Super Showdown

1. The Horror Show at Extreme Rules – Man…first of all, that last minute tag line of “The Horror Show” on its own is enough to bog this already weakly gimmicked PPV into the lowest ranking of the list. But then you look at the card, and realize that there was a Swamp Fight on it and an Eye for an Eye match on it. Yes, a swamp fight, and a match where, in order to win, you had to extract an eyeball out of the skull of your opponent…This was a horror show, but most certainly not the way they wanted it to be.

Ian Hamilton

5. AIW Thunder in Indianapolis
4. Impact Bound for Glory
3. Impact Final Resolution
2. WWE Backlash

1. WWE Super ShowDown – These Saudi shows will never rank highly – I always hold them to the same level as the old UK-only PPVs that WWE used to do, except they put more effort into these because… money? This one didn’t plumb any new depths, but gave plenty for the atypical “Internet fan” to go nuts with. Ricochet losing in 90 seconds? Goldberg winning the title in under three minutes? It’s sad when the furore is the only thing memorable about these shows.

Kevin Pantoja

5. NWA Hard Times
4. WWE WrestleMania 36 (Night Two)
3. NJPW New Japan Cup Finals
2. NJPW New Beginning in Sapporo (Night Two)

1. WWE Super Showdown – There honestly weren’t a ton of bad shows this year. Even with the awkwardness of a lack of a crowd, most shows were at least pretty good. As usual though, WWE topped the list with their Saudi Arabia product. These events have been pretty bad each time out. This one was better than most actually, with two good Tag Team Title matches, a solid Bayley/Naomi match, and decent stuff between Garza and Carrillo. Of course, this show also featured Goldberg winning the Universal Title, a bad Corbin/Reigns match, the awful Tuwaiq Trophy Gauntlet, and Ricochet getting squashed.

Jeremy Thomas

5. WWE Money in the Bank
4. WWE Backlash
3. AEW All Out
2. WWE Horror Show at Extreme Rules

1. WWE Super Showdown – While WWE managed to overdeliver on a lot of their PPVs this year, they had a couple absolute crap events. And when a PPV is less watchable than the one ridiculously dubbed “The Horror Show at Extreme Rules” that has a “Rip your opponent’s eye out” match on it, you know you went seriously wrong. In its very meager defense, Super Showdown 2020 was not the complete abomination that the previous year’s was, nor was it Crown Jewel 2019 bad. But it was still an awful show headlined by The Fiend’s momentum being taken out back and shot in the head for the sake of one of Goldberg’s two matches of the year, Brock Lesnar flattening Ricochet because why the fuck not, an overlong Roman Reigns vs. Baron Corbin match, and a WAY overlong Tuwaiq Mountain Trophy Gauntlet Match. At least that set up the Boneyard Match, but we didn’t need a 32 minute snoozefest to get there. If there’s one thing we can trust, it’s that when WWE goes to Saudi Arabia we’ll have a shitshow, and in that at least Super Showdown delivered.

AND 411’s TOP 5 Worst Major Shows of 2020 ARE…

T-4. WWE Payback8 points

T-4. WWE Backlash11 points

3. WWE Money in the Bank16 points

2. WWE The Horror Show at Extreme Rules25 points

1. WWE Super Showdown39 points