wrestling / TV Reports

The SmarKdown Rant – September 12 2002

September 12, 2002 | Posted by Scott Keith

The SmarKdown Rant – September 12, 2002

– Well, in theory my review of the Rush concert on the 10th should be up at www.411wrestling.com/music by midnight tonight, but then it was supposed to be up last night and wouldn’t appear on the main page for whatever reason.

– Tonight is apparently the “season premiere” of Smackdown, whatever that’s supposed to mean in context of a show that’s on 52 weeks a year.

– Taped from Minneapolis, MN.

– Your hosts are MC & Tazz.

– Opening match: Brock Lesnar v. Hardcore Holly. Slugfest to start. Cole’s claims of the crowd booing Brock due to Heyman’s comments towards Sara Undertaker would seem to be in stark contrast to the hundreds of pro-Lesnar signs in the crowd clearly visible. Brock suplexes Holly, but they fight out of the ring and Brock beats him down on the floor. Brock posts him and then suplexes him on the floor. Back in, it gets two. Lesnar clotheslines him down and stomps away. Hanging suplex and he keeps pounding Holly, who finally fights back, only to be caught in the BEARHUG OF INTERNAL BLEEDING! Quick, someone give Holly a condom full of fake blood to bite down on. Lesnar suplexes him for two. He misses a charge, however, and Holly comes off the top, but misses a dropkick by a mile. Brock goes back to work with a backbreaker, and a horribly botched powerbomb that dropped Holly on his head and looked sick. Holly comes back with a dropkick, and a rollup for two. F5, goodbye, at 6:10. That was pretty long and unexciting. Ѕ*

– Eddy Guerrero & Chavo Guerrero v. Edge & John Cena. Cena’s up-and-down push continues, as he’s back on Smackdown after a couple of Velocity appearances. Cena is wearing incredibly ugly yellow and purple, which I assume is to suck up to Viking fans. Eddy sneak-attacks Edge while Chavo holds off Cena, but Edge pancakes him and the faces clean house. Cena drags Eddy back in by the mullet (HOW DARE HE?), and Eddy is so outraged that he kicks his ass and takes him down with a wristlock. Edge comes in to assist with a double-team, however, until Chavo pulls down the top rope and Cena ends up on the floor. Back in, Cena is YOUR Prototype-in-Peril. Los Guerreros work him over in the corner, but Cena presses Eddy to come back. However, he makes the classic mistake of going to the well once too often, and gets clipped. He makes the hot tag anyway, and Edge’s nads immediately meet the post. Chavo gets two from that. Gotta love Eddy. Eddy takes his ruthless aggression out on Edge, and a vertical suplex gets two. Flying headscissors gets two. Chavo slingshots in with a knee to the back, and gives him a knee to the gut for two. Edge bulldogs him to escape the corner, hot tag Cena. A sign in the front row helpfully points that out. Protobomb gets two on Chavo. Edge hits Chavo with a flying clothesline and spears him in the corner, but Eddy dodges a spear and Edge hits the floor. The Guerreros kill Cena and frog splash him to finish at 6:30. Hey, it was fair and square. Chavo threatens a stinkface on Edge, but irony strikes and Eddy gets it instead. **1/2

– Elsewhere, the Guerreros squabble about the stinkface. Chavo protests that he wiped. Well, that’s good to know.

– Elsewhere, Matt congratulates Undertaker on his impending child. Undertaker doesn’t appreciate the kind words, so it’s gonna be a MATTITUDE adjustment tonight. I’m sure Undertaker is shaking.

– Elsewhere, Rico wants Stephanie to attend the wedding. She has bad luck at weddings, however. Ho, that was almost self-deprecating humor from Stephanie. Rico whines until she gives in and agrees, however.

– Rey Mysterio v. Kurt Angle. Angle cuts a pre-match promo and maneuvers himself into saying that “he’s a man who loves to play with boys”. Ah, NAMBLA humor, the last frontier of lowbrow laughs. Tazz claims that the wedding is NOT a ratings ploy. They even trash Bischoff and talk about how he’s desperate for ratings to catch Smackdown. That’s just … surreal. Angle slams him like a child to start. He takes him down and slaps him around, but Rey comes back with his own versions of both moves. They get into a chase and Rey dodges him, which puts Angle on the floor. Back in, Rey gets a headscissors and dodges ANOTHER charge, and gets a double-jump moonsault for two. Great sequence. Rey reverses the Angle Slam and gets a rollup for two. Angle suplexes him into the next time zone, however, to turn the tide. Backbreaker gets two. Rey comes back with a leg lariat, but walks into a belly to belly that gets two. I’m shocked Tazz didn’t say “pop the hips” there. Angle goes to a bodyscissors, which Rey reverses for two. Angle hits him with the rolling germans, however, but Rey counters with a bulldog. He mulekicks him into the corner and gets a moonsault press for two. They tumble out and Rey follows with a corkscrew plancha. Back in, springboard legdrop gets two, but Angle reverses to the anklelock. Rey escapes and hits the 619, and the West Coast Pop misses once, but a regular rana gets two. Rey heads up, but gets hits with a Pop-Up Top Rope Angle Slam for the pin at 8:25. That’s quite the finish. Not as energetic as Summerslam, but still good for a TV match. **1/2

– Chris Benoit v. Rikishi. Rikishi slugs him down to start, but Benoit headbutts out of a suplex attempt. Rikishi uses the dreaded SITOUT MAIN EVENT SPINEBUSTER, but Benoit goes low and starts chopping. Only Benoit is manly enough to escape the Most Devastating Move Ever Invented. Crossface in the center of the ring, but it’s only 90 seconds in. Rikishi powers out and gets a Bubba Cutter to set up a Banzai drop, but Benoit counters with an Electric Chair out of the corner. Yikes. To the top, but Angle runs in for the DQ at 3:03. Rikishi cleans house on both guys and gives Benoit a Stinkface (with an assist from Angle). This just didn’t click in the least. Ѕ*

– Elsewhere, an irate Benoit continues the sexual tension with Steph, and gets a match with Angle at the PPV. Matt wants a match with Undertaker tonight, and gets it.

– Wedding time, as Rico hosts the proceedings and we get a live rendition of “It’s Raining Men”. Billy & Chuck (with personalized cumberbunds) use that as entrance music as the Justice of the Peace grooves. Chuck gives a badly-acted vow recital, and Billy gives him a ring. Rico gives us a “Love Story” themed video, with all the highlights of their career as a team. Well, really there’s not many, since they’ve only been a team for 6 months. We get the objection process, which causes the entire audience to object, and then Godfather does the formal objecting. Didn’t they kill this character once already this year? Godfather “outs” them as being straight, but Rico sends him packing. We skip right to the end, as Billy suddenly looks very nervous. Wow, acting. Chuck gets cold feet, but Rico reassures him and they’re officially married. Chuck and Billy freak out and reveal that it was all a publicity stunt and they’re not actually gay. Hey, it’s another marriage: Bait and switch. The Justice declares that tough shit, they said the vows, they’re married. And by the way…it’s not actually an old Justice of the Peace, it’s Eric Bischoff. And their 3 minutes are up. Rico turns on Billy, and the Island Boyz run in for some destruction, including a samoan drop on Stephanie that draws a huge face pop. All the Smackdown workers unite to save Stephanie. It’s only been SIX MONTHS! They had an invasion storyline 20 YEARS in the making in 2001, and they already blew that one, what makes them think this one is going to work any better? This segment was LONG and really quite boring until the payoff at the end. And I mean, who gives a crap about Billy & Chuck to begin with? They were fighting on Velocity until like two weeks ago. This whole thing just reeks of desperation.

– Nidia v. Torrie. Nidia attacks to start, but Torrie slams her for two. Nidia comes back and stomps away as Cole and Tazz ignore the match in favor of Stephanie. Nidia misses a charge and Torrie gets a neckbreaker for the pin at 1:40. Total filler. DUD

– Elsewhere, Matt Hardy fetches Brock.

– Matt Hardy v. Undertaker. Matt is using the Monster Magnet version of his music now, which pretty much kills his initial pop dead. We’ve got like 5 minutes of airtime left, so expect this to be short. Brock is lurking around ringside, and Heyman tosses a chair in to draw things up. Taker beats on him in the corner and gets a powerslam, but Heyman interrupts the Last Ride. The ref tosses him, and Matt goes low. Taker no-sells it and kills him with a big boot, but Brock trips him up and Matt dumps him. Brock gets his shots in and gets sent back to the dressing room as well, and back in the ring Matt gets his Token Jobber Offense in before Taker kills him dead again with clotheslines and Snake Eyes. Back in the dressing room, Heyman stalks Sara, which results in Undertaker chasing him for the Sports Entertainment Finish at 4:00 or so. Taker goes after him, but Brock attacks from behind. That’s one of those HHH Master Plans. Ѕ*

The Bottom Line: Really good first hour, but the wedding-centered nonsense and glorified squash that was the “main event” pretty much killed the show dead for me. The over-hyped “wedding” didn’t actually deliver a wedding, and wasn’t entertaining either.

I do like the continued focus on the in-ring aspect rather than the ga-ga (like, say, a gay wedding), but this was another off-week when they can least afford one. And doing an “invasion” angle when viewer interest in the “war of the GMs” nonsense is at its lowest point?

By the way, did you know that there’s a PPV next week? Because I bet not many people do.


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