Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Final "ECW" Report

Oh My God!: Lashley vs. Rob Van Dam ended in a really unsatisfying no contest.

Conclusive Finishes: 3 of 4.

The Extreme Rundown:

1. Test beat Sabu. Before the match, Test complained about the fans voting for Rob Van Dam when he has more wins and is the real number one contender. It was a bland, poor promo. Test dominated the match with clotheslines, back breakers, a side slam, and a body slam. Sabu came back with springboard leg lariats and a springboard DDT, but Test hit the yakuza kick and TKO for the pin.

2. Elijah Burke and Sylvester Terkay defeated the FBI. The Full Blooded Italians were accompanied to the ring by the Fake Breasted Italian. Terkay and Burke worked over Little Guido, with Terkay hitting a big boot and belly to belly. Guido made the hot tag to Tony Mamaluke, but Terkay took over with head butts and slammed Mamaluke into the mat face first. He cranked the arm for the tapout.

They announced CM Punk vs. Hardcore Holly for next week. Matt Striker said Holly would beat Punk, and Holly said Punk can’t make him tap. Tommy Dreamer appeared “via satellite” and said he gets his ass whipped all the time because that’s who he is. He vowed to chop down Great Khali. Rob Van Dam thanked Lashley for getting rid of Paul Heyman and Big Show and thanked the fans for supporting him. He said he would bring home the title.

3. Kevin Thorn beat Balls Mahoney. The match was a disaster. Thorn hit clotheslines, Balls used punches. Then Thorn appeared to accidentally bust open Balls’ mouth with an elbow and they immediately went to the pin. The highlight of the match was Brad Armstrong’s return, as Tazz and Armstrong went at it again taking constant shots at each other. Backstage, Lashley said he respects Rob Van Dam but will retain his title. Vladimir Kozlov was at ringside and said he could beat Lashley or RVD.

4. Bobby Lashley and Rob Van Dam fought to a no contest. The crowd was dead, although there were light chants for both. Lashley hit a power slam, bear hug, spine buster and gorilla press to the floor. RVD used kicks and a split legged moonsault. Lashley took back over with a torture rack back breaker and delayed vertical suplex but his spear attempt was thwarted by an RVD drop toe hold.

RVD hit a kick off the top but missed rolling thunder. RVD dropped Lashley on the announcers’ table and hit a clothesline off the top to the floor, and the match was stopped. Basically, it was the finish to Sabu vs. Rey Mysterio all over again, only this time not nearly impressive enough a finish to sell stopping the match. There’s also the fact they had an actual injury finish in the match immediately preceding this one.

Please Don’t Go:

This show is pointless and boring, and as such this will be my final review of WWE’s ECW. A quick note on the finish: if ECW were generally producing good shows, finishes like this one would be fine. But given the shows have mostly been quite bad, they should be doing what they can to build goodwill with their viewers, not turn them off.


Anonymous Steve D. said...

Some weeks I'm glad I'm unable to tune in. So, they got knocked out on a clothesline?

When this ECW thing started, I naively thought it would be the old one. When I realized it wasn't, I figured it would be an hour-long wrestling show, which is fine, since I grew up on the WWF-style wrestling. But now I realize it's just crap. They should just scrap it now.

8:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

EXTREME is not so extreme huh? Oh he is "hurt" so lets stop the match!!!

9:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When this ECW thing started, I naively thought it would be the old one.

That is the sad thing..so many people wanted to ignore Vinny's history and think this was gonna really be ecw!! So many wanted to ignore the 800 pound gorilla and hope against hope that he would stay away and just sign the checks but we all knew better

9:56 PM  
Anonymous Dave S. said...

My view on the finish of the Lashley-RVD match is that it was a blown spot that was meant to be much more impressive than it was. I'm guessing Lashley wasn't supposed to get up, and that RVD was going to splash him through the table. But Lashley screwed up and stood up on the table (you can see the surprised look on RVD's face when he gets up), so they improvised and it looked terrible.

Lashley is such a bad choice as ECW champion; it is incredible to me that ANYONE in WWE thought he was a good choice. He is the complete antithesis of what ECW is supposed to be: he is bland, he can't wrestle, and he can't cut a promo. But since he has big muscles, he's the champion instead of the few people on that show who could actually be interesting in that role (RVD, CM Punk, Sabu, even Test). Lashley just has no connection with the crowd at all, and is not particularly good at anything. At least Big Show brought something to the table as champ; this guy brings NOTHING.

I don't blame you at all for stopping your reviews of this show. It is by far the least entertaining wrestling show on tv. I record it on DVR and end up fast-forwarding through almost the entire thing every week, if I even watch it at all. If I didn't have my DVR, I would literally never watch this show.

10:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

...There’s also the fact they had an actual injury finish in the match immediately preceding this one.

Friend of mine after about 2 matches with Little Spike Dudley was thinking and spoke of the same exact thing.


2:16 AM  
Blogger Tyson said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

2:29 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Todd, if you were cool, you would have changed the last section to "Please DO Go" for this final report.

On a more serious note, I am quite disappointed in this alleged "ECW". The descent seems to be really accelerating now: The poor promoting of Dismember to Dismember, the poor show itself, ending CM Punk's undefeated streak for no good reason, not giving Punk the title, bringing in a Smackdown reject to wear the belt, firing Heyman, cranking out one poor weekly show after another...

And we must not forget the fact that they chose to spend a good amount of time covering the idiotic strip poker stuff in their year-end show, just to rub it in our faces that they haven't learned a damn thing and never will.

And now that it's gone from "an embarrassment that draws ratings" to just "an embarrassment" on Sci-Fi, I can't imagine they'll keep it any longer than they contractually have to at this point.

I honestly don't know why they bothered with all of this if it was just going to be a fifth hour of the same WWE crud. Does Vince still think he has the magic touch and the perfect formula? Hasn't he looked at his ratings? Not to mention that most of the ratings analyses these days leave off the fact that they were expecting to pick up 40% of WCW's fan base in 2001, and that instead they lost viewers.

4:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to say one more thing, triggered by the commenter that mocked the whole "extreme" theme with regard to the non-extreme finish to RVD vs. Lashley...

OK, so the WWE fashions themselves as creative geniuses, transcending genres to present all sorts of entertaining television, blah blah blah. Right?

So these creative geniuses are given a new federation, and its theme is that it's "extreme". So, obviously, their basic assignment is come up with SOME WAY that this promotion is extreme. Sounds simple enough, right?

But they came up with nothing. Extreme strip poker was apparently their best shot. Extreme rules matches? It's hard to sell having one match with those rules when that used to be the norm for every match.

Now I could see toning things down to preserve the health of the "extremists" (ugh) and to make the weapons shots, etc., mean more. But what idiot decided that this "extreme" federation would not only have limited "extreme" matches but they'd also drive home the point with a series of disqualifications and count outs? Could you imagine being on the creative team, presenting that idea, and expecting anything other than a pink slip in response?

Someone (I forget who) said it best on the WON site: It's becoming clear that Vince McMahon's magic wand has very little magic left in it these days.

4:33 PM  
Anonymous ty smith said...

Todd, did you give your 2 weeks to Meltzer? I hope you didn't leave him hanging, lol

4:35 PM  
Anonymous Charlie Kane said...

I've been called 'long-winded', and, sadly, it's true. My problem is that I try to explain my points instead of just stating them. It's a weakness. From now on I will only write in blunt platitudes and expect everyone to take it as 'the truth'.
ECW is a joke. It is already at WCW Thunder status, and cannot be improved upon. It will only get worse. Vince McMahon's 'vision' is clearly just 'let's finish out the contract with Sci Fi and pull the plug.' Put Punk on Raw, throw RVD to Smackdown to use up his contract, get Kelly Kelly to pose in Hustler ( 'extreme stroke mag') and dump the rest of them. Outside of a couple of t-shirts, there can not be any way that this is adding to the 'revenue stream', and since creative success is based purely on how big Vince McMahon's yacht is, this show should end now. It's wise of Todd not to waste any more time on this show. He's obviously not the first to make this choice.

6:55 PM  
Blogger Tyson said...

Please Don’t Go:

8:25 PM  
Anonymous tyson said...

May not agreed on some of your viewpoints but I enjoyed reading your blog entries and wrestling reports. Especially the hall of fame breakdowns you did on talents of the past. Very inciteful and informative. Shame you won't be writing the ECW any longer, but would like to thank you for the time you spent on the product and your contributions are definitely appreciated.

4:09 PM  

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