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WWE The Attitude Era Vol. 3: Unreleased (Blu-Ray Edition)
by Scrooge McSuck
- Hosted by Corey Graves and the best 2016 reproduction of the old backstage "War Zone" set. When you've got an act that's hot, might as well milk it for as long as fans are willing to accept it. Graves informs us ahead of time that the quality of what we are about to see will not be up to the standards of the modern day "HD" technology, and some matches will only feature one camera angle. Pro wrestling is Pro wrestling. If you're sitting in the crowd, you don't get multiple camera angles, so as long as you've ever been to at least one show, you know how to properly watch a wrestling match.
Bret "Hitman" Hart vs. "Stone Cold" Steve Austin:
They didn't give us an exact date on this one, but it's from one of the following dates from a German Tour following WrestleMania XII: April 7th (Dortmund), April 12th (Frankfurt), and April 17th (Berlin). It's only the first match into the set and would you believe, only one camera is being used for this match? A year later this would be co-headlining WrestleMania 13, but here, Austin was still just a lukewarm mid-card heel while Bret was coming off his 3rd run as WWF Champion. Lockup to the corner and a clean break. They trade waist-locks and take turns with basic arm work. Austin with a drop toe hold, but Bret quickly counters a headlock and goes back to the arm. Whip to the ropes and Austin with an elbow. He drops a few elbows, but Bret counters another headlock into an arm-bar. Crisscross, Bret with a roll up for two, then back to the arm. Austin gets the better of a knuckle-lock, planting a series of boots to the midsection. Bret counters with an over-head takedown. Whip to the ropes, Austin side-steps Hart and sends him to the floor. He follows and sends Hart into the steps. Back inside, Austin pounds away in the corner and sends Hart across the ring for a hard bump. Austin continues to punish the back and drops an elbow across the throat. Austin brings him back in with a suplex and comes off the middle rope with an elbow for two. I just noticed that the ropes are set up wrong, with the blue rope for the top and red rope for the bottom. Bret pounds his way out of a chin-lock, but Austin comes right back with a knee lift. Austin with a cradle for a near fall. Suplex for two. Bret grabs a sleeper, but Austin counters with a jaw breaker. Austin misses a splash across the back, landing in the ropes. Bret gets the better of a slugfest, sends Austin to the corner, and connects with a clothesline. Bret with an inverted atomic drop and clothesline for two. Fist to the midsection and roll-up for two. Russian leg sweep and second rope clothesline for two. Austin with a Power-Slam for two. Bret takes the chest-first bump to the corner. Austin with a snap mare and elbow for two. Bret counters a Super-Plex and comes off the top with an elbow drop, and the Sharpshooter finishes at 19:58. **1/2 Slow start and middle and a super-hot finish, or as the world collectively knew as the "standard house show" formula for Bret Hart. Get used to reading that, whether it's Bret or not, for a lot of these matches.
The Undertaker (w/ Paul Bearer) vs. Mankind:
From the untelevised portion of IYH: Good Friends, Better Enemies
, April 28th, 1996. These two would spend most of 1996 feuding with each other, but this is the first match between the two. The rivalry kicked off on the night-after WrestleMania episode of Monday Night Raw, but they did a slow-build to their first (official) match on PPV in June at the King of the Ring. Standard PPV production style, but no commentary. The Undertaker's entrance eats up 3 ½ minutes. Undertaker pounds away and misses an elbow. Mankind with a clothesline to take them both to the floor, but Taker lands on his feet and sends him into the steps. Back inside and Taker immediately hits the rope-walk clothesline. Mankind gets an elbow up in the corner and puts the boots to him. Mankind with a pair of clotheslines and choking. Back to the floor and Mankind returns the favor with a trip to the steps for Taker. Undertaker tries to come back with rights and lefts, but Mankind cuts him off. Mankind with a slam and leg drop for two. Whip to the corner and Undertaker surprises him with an elbow. They take it to the floor again. This match has absolutely no structure. Mankind with a Piledriver, but he wastes time, allowing Undertaker to block the Mandible Claw. Mankind cuts off another comeback. Whip to the corner, Undertaker gets a boot up and lays Mankind out with a clothesline. He tosses him face-first to the post, and we go to the floor AGAIN. Undertaker follows, shoves Mankind into the post and choke throws him backwards into the security rail. Back in the ring, they do a counter sequence where Taker ducked under the non-clothesline arm, plants Mankind with a Choke-Slam, and finishes with the Tombstone Piledriver at 11:02 (that was a long three count, Hebner). ½* A couple of decent spots (a.k.a. Mankind taking some hard bumps), but this was mostly a mess with just aimless brawling and a dead crowd.
Bret "Hitman" Hart & The Undertaker (w/ Paul Bearer) vs. Owen Hart & The British Bulldog:
Taped on May 12th, 1996 from the Al Arabi Stadium in Kuwait City, Kuwait. There's quite a handful of matches from this tour circulated, and bits of the tour was recycled for a really poor video release titled "World Tour ‘96". Entrances take forever, although most of that is due to Undertaker. Bret comes out wearing a Kuwaiti headdress and gives out not one, but TWO pairs of sunglasses. You know the crowd is easy because Bret and Bulldog take turns playing the "boo me / cheer me" posing on opposite sides of the ring. After five minutes of mostly nothing, Undertaker grabs a headlock on Owen and drops him with a soft shoulder tackle. Taker with a hip toss, followed by an arm-drag into an arm-bar. No, I'm NOT making this PBP up. Undertaker to the top rope with the rope-walk clothesline. Bret tags in to give Owen the wish bone treatment. Bret works on the arm of Davey Boy. Whip to the corner, Bret with an inverted atomic drop and back breaker for two. Owen goes for the arm, but Bret uses his momentum to send him to the floor. Crisscross, Bret with an inverted atomic drop and clothesline for two. Bulldog trips Bret from the floor, allowing Owen to sneak up from behind and put the boots to him. Bulldog in to do more of the same. Owen with a snap mare and choking with Bret's own singlet. Whip to the ropes, Bret ducks under a clothesline and connects with a body press for two. The referee misses the tag, allowing Owen and Bulldog to double-team Bret in the corner. Bret with a double clothesline and hot tag to Taker. He plants Owen with the Choke-Slam and finishes with the Tombstone at 14:47. Yeah, 15-minutes. ¾* They looked like they were having fun out there, but that doesn't make it a good match. This was taped on the last day of a 5-day tour of Kuwait, if you're looking for excuses.
WWF Championship Match:
Shawn Michaels © vs. "Stone Cold" Steve Austin:
This was also taped on May 12th, 1996 from Kuwait, part of the final show of the tour that included the crowning of the Kuwait Cup Winner (Spoiler: Ahmed Johnson defeated Hunter Hearst Helmsley). For some reason, Austin is wearing PINK wrist tape and arm bands. Maybe he lost a bet. He's still carrying around the Million Dollar Belt. That wouldn't last for much longer. Hebner checks Austin before the bell and finds a FORK. Maybe he thought he was doing a tribute to Abdullah the Butcher. Lockup and Austin with a side headlock. Michaels reverses a whip to the ropes, takes him over with a pair of arm drags, and hooks an arm-bar. Austin with a drop toe hold and headlock, but Michaels quickly counters with an arm-bar. Austin escapes with an elbow to the face and goes back to the arm. They take turns trading holds, from wrist-locks and arm-bars to headlocks. Austin hangs on to a head scissors for a bit before Michaels goes back to the headlock. Whip to the ropes and Austin with an elbow. He comes off the second rope with an elbow drop for two. Crisscross, Michaels skins the cat and takes Austin over with a hurricanrana. Austin distracts the referee and hits a low blow to turn the tide. At this point, the power goes out in the stadium. They keep working, despite the handicap. The lights gradually return after at least 90-seconds of pitch-black "action." They find themselves on the floor, with Austin ramming Michaels' back into the ring. Michaels counters a suplex with a roll up for two. Austin quickly recovers and connects with a clothesline for two. Austin with a chin-lock. He lifts Michaels over-head into a back breaker for two. Michaels grabs a sleeper, but Austin escapes with a jaw breaker. Michaels comes off the ropes with the diving forearm, and its comeback time. He connects with an inverted atomic drop and clothesline, followed by a top rope axe-handle for two. Austin with a weak version of the Stun Gun for two. Michaels with a small package for two. He rams Austin face-first to the canvas and Sweet Chin Music finishes at 16:38. ** This was your standard paint-by-numbers match, with a lot of resting and a minimal amount of bumping. Again, final day of a rough overseas tour, so it's slightly forgiven.
The Ultimate Warrior vs. Owen Hart (w/ Jim Cornette):
From the May 19th, 1996 card held at Madison Square Garden, otherwise known as the Kliq Curtain Call Show. Interesting production for this match, as the WWF had professional camera work that night (they taped highlights of the Godwinns title win for broadcast on Monday Night Raw), and actually use the Fan-Cam footage to give the illusion of a second camera angle. It's done well, but there's an obvious quality drop. Owen stalls by hiding on the floor. Warrior chases him into the ring, and takes him over with a pair of arm drags. Warrior with a slam and clothesline, sending Owen back to the floor. Owen tries a sneak attack, but Warrior no-sells it. Whip to the ropes, Warrior presses Owen into the air, then sends him into the corner via slingshot. Whip to the ropes and Owen with a spinning heel kick. Warrior pops right up. Owen with a diving clothesline, with the same result, so he just takes Warrior down and pounds away. Cornette gets a cheap shot in with the tennis racket. Owen mocks Warrior's posing and rope shake before nailing him with the enzuigiri. He heads to the top rope and connects with a missile dropkick. Warrior blocks a suplex attempt and counters with his own. He starts shaking the ropes, so you know the end is near. Warrior with a series of clotheslines and a diving shoulder tackle for three at 7:17. * Typical Warrior match. Owen's bumping around for Warrior was all you could ask for, I guess. During the introductions, it was hinted that Owen's wrist injury occurred during this match. I guess it happened on the press spot, as he landed funny and can be seen clutching his wrist.
The Undertaker (w/ Paul Bearer) vs. "Stone Cold" Steve Austin:
From the August 9th, 1996 card held at Madison Square Garden, and the camera style follows the same formula as the previous match: professional work on the floor, spliced around the fan-cam footage in an obvious quality drop. Always a good sign when the timekeeper falls asleep on the job. Undertaker no-sells Austin's strikes and sends him to the floor for a breather and some trash talking with ringside fans. Hey you, it's WWF Super-Fan Vladimir! Back in the ring, Austin with the punchy-kicky, but Taker shrugs it off and unleashes a flurry of rights of his own. Taker with the rope-walk clothesline, followed by choking. Austin rolls out of the way of an elbow drop and puts the boots to Taker in the corner. They take it to the floor, and still not much going on. Whip to the ropes and Austin with an elbow, followed by a pair of elbow drops for two. Undertaker fights back from his knees. Whip to the ropes and Austin catches him with a swinging neck breaker for two. Austin with a snap mare and second rope elbow for two. Taker with another comeback. Austin counters a back drop attempt with a piledriver. Austin goes for a Tombstone, but Undertaker easily counters it with his own, and here's Mankind for the Disqualification at 9:08. He puts Taker down with the Mandible Claw, so Shawn Michaels makes the save until Goldust swings the odds back in the baddies favor. Undertaker and Shawn do a simultaneous comeback (Taker sit-up, Shawn nip-up), Undertaker plants Austin with the Choke-Slam, and Michaels comes off the top with the elbow. ½* Nothing to this from bell-to-bell, but the post-match stuff was pretty fun. I think they did some house shows with Taker and Michaels teaming up against various teams of top heels in the Fall.
WWF Championship Match:
Shawn Michaels © (w/ Jose Lothario) vs. Goldust (w/ Marlena):
From the unaired portion of In Your House: Buried Alive
. Yes, the WWF CHAMPIONSHIP was kept off the Pay-Per-View, with the logic being that the gimmick on top was enough to sell the PPV (and Shawn as Champion wasn't lighting the world on fire). This was around the time that Goldust was sent down the card before a lame face-turn based on someone calling him out on his questionable behavior. Before the bell, Goldust has them play Shawn's music and does a mock of his entrance and brief karaoke. Michaels attacks from behind and sends him to the floor to save us from the awesomeness. Michaels sends him back in the ring and comes off the top with a double axe-handle for two. Goldust with a slap, so Michaels grabs a handful of gold-junk. Whip to the ropes, Goldust with the uppercut, followed by a clothesline, sending Michaels taking an exaggerated bump out of the ring… and just as I type that, he over-sells a forearm as if he were shot by a canon. Michaels escapes a chin-lock, but runs right into a sleeper. Michaels counters that with a back suplex. Whip to the ropes and a collision sends both men crashing to the canvas. Whip to the ropes, Michaels with the diving forearm, and its comeback time™. Michaels with a back drop and elbow from the top rope. He sets up for Sweet Chin Music, but Goldust ducks it and nails a short clothesline for two. Goldust with some lewd behavior for the sake of doing it. Michaels counters the Curtain Call and plants a kiss on Goldie. Goldust enjoys it too much, rubbing himself for the hard camera, and gets nailed with Sweet Chin Music for the three count at 8:04. *1/2 Below-average match, but it was short, and they did some fun stuff to make it somewhat entertaining.
Shawn Michaels vs. Mankind (w/ Paul Bearer):
More "Dark Match" goodness, this time from the unaired portion of In Your House: It's Time
. By this point, Michaels was between Championship reigns and Mankind was between meaningful programs. Did I mention it was only three months earlier this was the headliner of IYH: Mind Games, and was arguably one of the best matches of the decade? Michaels comes out sipping on a beverage, so you know he's taking this seriously. Mankind tries to attack, but Michaels casually knocks him around and slams a padded chair across his back. Where's the bag of popcorn when you need it? Mankind with a discus clothesline to take control. He sends Michaels to the floor with a baseball slide. He chokes away on the floor, throws Michaels back in the ring, and fish-hooks him. Mankind charges into the corner with a knee to the face. He signals for the Claw, but Michaels blocks it and takes him down via back suplex. They trade blows in the corner, with Michaels getting the upper hand. Whip to the ropes and Michaels hits the diving forearm. Michaels nips up and walks right into the Mandible Claw. Michaels takes it to the floor, but Mankind hangs on to the hold. He finally escapes, ramming Mankind backwards into the post. Twice. He slams the hand across the steps for good measure. Back inside, Michaels comes off the top with a double axe-handle, followed by an elbow drop. Bearer with a distraction, allowing Mankind to grab the urn, but Michaels sees it coming and finishes with Sweet Chin Music at 6:55. *1/2 Another under-whelming effort, but there were moments of good work. Just too short to pick up and go anywhere meaningful. (Note: The standard DVD cuts off here to end Disc 1)
WWF Championship; Triple Threat Match:
Shawn Michaels © vs. Bret "Hitman" Hart vs. Sycho Sid:
Dark Match from the February 3rd, 1997 episode of Monday Night Raw, held at the Skydome in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. I'm sure I've seen Fan-Cam footage of this, , but this is WWF's standard camera work. Former Canadian Heavyweight Boxing Champion George Chuvalo is introduced as a "special referee." Bret and Shawn have a slugfest before Sid interrupts with clotheslines to both men. He sends Michaels to the corner, and he takes a big bump to the floor. Shawn tries to get back in, but Sid dumps him over the top as if this were Battle Royal rules. Sid misses a boot to the corner but counters Sweet Chin Music with a Choke-Slam. He goes to the top rope for some ungodly reason, but Bret slams him off. Shawn sends Bret chest-first to the corner and kind of hits, kind of doesn't hit Sweet Chin Music on Sid to knock him to the floor. Bret counters a dropkick with the Sharpshooter, but Sid instantly interrupts. Shawn takes another big bump to the floor and does the Flair flop. Sid with the Powerbomb on Bret, but Shawn saves. Sid catches Shawn off the ropes with a press slam as we get our first glimpse of Chuvalo since his introduction. Bret works Sid in the corner and dives onto Shawn with more rights. Inverted atomic drop and clothesline to send Sid out of the ring. Inverted atomic drop and clothesline to turn Shawn inside out for some comical bumping. Bret with a back drop and Russian leg sweep for two. Back breaker for two. Shawn gets knees up to counter the second rope elbow. Bret sends Shawn to the floor with a back drop and hits Sid with a Hart Attack clothesline. Bret with the Sharpshooter on Sid, but Austin interferes. This brings Chuvalo in for the worst worked punch since the days of Buster Douglas. Bret goes for the Sharpshooter again, but Shawn hits a body press from the top and covers Bret, with his legs tangled with Sid's, for three to retain at 11:13. *** Really good despite the occasional awkward transition. You can tell this was the early days of doing triple threats, trying to find logical ways to keep the action, for the most part, one-on-one and neutralizing the third man.
"Stone Cold" Steve Austin, The Undertaker, Cactus Jack, and Chainsaw Charlie vs. The Nation of Domination (Faarooq, The Rock, D'Lo Brown, and Kama Mustafa):
Dark Match from the Monday Night Raw taping at the Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, NY on December 29th, 1997. Austin's working the match in his jean shorts and vest, as if we're using the alternate attire in WWF War Zone for N64. Why does Ron Simmons always look so miserable? D'Lo and Cactus start. Cactus with a side headlock and shoulder tackle, followed by a leg drop. "Charlie" (Terry Funk) tags in for a double clothesline and neck breaker. Rock reluctantly tags in to put the boots to Charlie. Austin tags in, but Rock takes a walk. Austin works over Brown and tries to force him to tag in the Rock. He only obliges when Austin is in a compromised position, but that doesn't last long. Crisscross and Austin with the Thesz Press and elbow drop. He goes for the Stunner, but Rocky runs away, again. Charlie surprises Faarooq with a DDT and tags out to Cactus. Kama botches a kick from the apron, falling into the ring in the process. Even the Rock can't help but laugh at him. Regardless, Cactus gets to play the face-in-peril. I feel like D'Lo has worked the majority of the match for the Nation. Cactus catches Faarooq with knees to the junk and its hot tag time for the Undertaker. Choke-Slam to Faarooq as heck breaks loose. Austin blind tags and finishes the Rock with the Stunner at 8:23. DUD The very definition of a nothing match. We've officially entered the time period where the work-rate was really starting to suffer.
WWF Intercontinental Championship Match:
The Rock © (w/ The Nation) vs. Ken Shamrock:
Taped from the Arrowhead Pond in Anaheim, CA on March 13th, 1998, about two weeks away from WrestleMania XIV. I can't tell if they're doing the same trick with a mix of professional and fan-shot camera work, since the quality of the "crowd" shot is just as good, if not better than the ringside camera. Rocky attacks from behind, but Shamrock quickly comes back with clothesline and a rolling cradle for two. Short-arm takedown, but Rock rolls to the floor to avoid the Ankle-Lock. Whip to the ropes and Shamrock with a dropkick. Rock sends Shamrock to the floor, where he's met from interference on behalf of D'Lo and Mark Henry. The referee questions what happened and ejects the Nation from ringside. Back inside, Rock with a slam and the People's Elbow for two. Shamrock fights out of a chin-lock and comes off the ropes with a body press for a near fall. He ducks under a clothesline and takes Rocky over with a fisherman suplex for another two count. Rock lays him out with a clothesline and tosses him to the floor. He sends Shamrock into the steps and rolls him back inside for a two count. Rock with boots and rights in the corner. Shamrock comes back with a DDT and a running knee lift. Whip to the ropes and Rock counters a clothesline with the spinning DDT for two. Whip to the ropes and Shamrock with a jumping heel kick, followed by a Power-Slam for two. Whip to the ropes and Shamrock with a hurricanrana. Rock ducks under a clothesline, so poor Earl Hebner gets laid out. D'Lo sneaks back in and lays Shamrock out with a chair to the back, but for some reason, Hebner stops the count of his replacement. Rock argues with them, so Shamrock hits the short-arm takeover into the Ankle Lock, and he taps out at 10:11! The Nation all run in, obviously missing their cue for the finish. Henry gets taken down with a belly-to-belly suplex to a pop as if it were Hogan slamming Andre, and they announce it as a Disqualification victory. **3/4 Not far from the standard formula they worked on TV, but they were never going to light up the board when it came to in-ring performance, and a slight mark off for the botched finish.
Falls Count Anywhere Match: Cactus Jack vs. Billy Gunn:
Taped from Madison Square Garden on March 22nd, 1998, just a week before WrestleMania XIV where Cactus and Terry Funk (still as Chainsaw Charlie) were scheduled to face the Outlaws for the Tag Titles in a Dumpster Match. Cactus nails Gunn with a broomstick and they slug it out. Gunn rams Cactus into the railing and takes him over with a suplex on the concrete for two. Cactus bops him with a trash can (the rubbery version) and nails him in the face with a running knee. He wastes time setting up a table, allowing Gunn to give him a cheap shot. He tries for a hip toss, but Cactus blocks and counters, putting Gunn through the table instead. He slaps on the Mandible Claw, but Gunn uses the ropes to pull himself out of harm's way. Cactus no-sells being sent into the steps and comes back with a clothesline. Gunn with a chair to knock the steps into Cactus' face. Back in the ring, Gunn breaks a broom across his back. Cactus with a double leg sweep, but he misses an elbow. Gunn with a trash can lid (or maybe it's a pizza pan) and smashes Cactus over the head with it. He hits a really sloppy Piledriver and goes to find more toys. He lays a chair across Cactus' face for a good old fashion curb stomp, but Cactus lifts the chair up and meets Gunn in the face on the way down. Whip to the corner and Cactus with a clothesline for two. Gunn with the Fame-Asser, but doesn't go for a cover. Cactus boots him in the midsection and connects with a Double-Arm DDT onto a chair for three at 8:30. * Typical junk brawl. Nothing bad about it, nothing really good about it. A product of its time, which to me hasn't aged well in general, and isn't just a knock on this particular match.
"Stone Cold" Steve Austin vs. Hunter Hearst Helmsley (w/ Chyna):
Also from the MSG card held on March 22nd, 1998. Helmsley is the reigning European Champion, but as if Austin was actually going to challenge for that piece of garbage. Crowd is really hot, to the surprise of no one. Lockup into the corner and Austin with the middle finger salute on the break. They trade hammer-locks until Austin nails him with an elbow. Austin with a shoulder tackle and more double birds. Austin with a bit of chain wrestling and a thumb to the eye. Hunter gives him the finger, so Austin pounds away on him in the corner. Crisscross and Austin with the Thesz Press and F-U Elbow. He ducks under a clothesline, but can't hit the Stunner. They take it to the floor, with Austin still in control. Back inside and Helmsley nails Austin coming off the ropes with the running high knee. He wraps the leg around the post and clips the knee for good measure. He continues working the leg as if his playbook was inspired by mid-80's Ric Flair. He goes for a Figure-Four, but Austin boots him into the corner and rolls him up for two. Hunter ducks under a clothesline and kicks the leg out from under Austin to regain control. To the floor again, with Hunter sending Austin into the security rail. Back in the ring, Hunter with an atomic drop to the knee, and the Figure-Four is applied on the second attempt. Yes, he does use the ropes for illegal leverage. Austin rolls over to reverse the pressure, so Chyna chokes him across the bottom rope while the referee is bothered by asking if Hunter wants to give up. Austin slams his leg across the face of Helmsley to escape a leg-lock, but gets put down with a knee to the face for a near fall. Whip to the ropes and a double clothesline puts both men down. Chyna with another cheap shot for a near fall. Hunter takes too long climbing the ropes and gets crotched along the turnbuckle. He slugs Austin down but gets nailed with a fist to the midsection. Austin with a series of clotheslines and a splash across the back. He counters a Pedigree and crushes the referee in the corner. Chyna with another distraction, but Austin fights both off, hits both with Stunners, and covers Hunter for three at 16:44. *** Took a while to get going, but this developed into a really solid match. Based on the quality of matches at the time, a PPV quality Main Event.
The Big Show vs. Triple H (w/ Chyna):
We're sputtering towards the finish line, and we're in Madison Square Garden again, this time on June 26th, 1999. The hell if I could remember whether or not Big Show was a face or heel at the time. I know he was feuding with Kane and, to a lesser degree, Hardcore Holly. Hunter, on the other hand, was being groomed for the biggest push of his career. Only a short bit of Big Show's entrance is shown before we cut to the action. Lockup and Show throws Hunter down. After a bit of stalling, Hunter unwisely engages in a test-of-strength. Hunter goes for a waist-lock, but Show uses his backside to easily break the grip. Hunter avoids a big forearm and unloads with rights. Show blocks a whip across the ring, throws him into the corner, and does his big smack to the chest spot, minus the impressive sound. Hunter tries taking a walk, but Show carries him back and lays him out with a headbutt. Chyna sneaks in behind the referee's back and nails Show with a low blow. Hunter finally gets some offense, stomping and choking the fallen Giant. Every so often, Chyna gets some shots in, too. Hunter with a running high knee for two. Show reverses a whip to the corner, but misses a charge by an hour-and-a-half. Hunter climbs to the top rope to apply a sleeper hold, and that should eat a few more minutes. Show eventually escapes with a snap mare. He goes for the Choke-Slam, but Hunter goes low. Show recovers quickly enough to catch him off the ropes with a side slam. Show starts no-selling Hunter's strikes and hits a series of headbutts. He hits a big boot, but misses a jumping elbow drop. Hunter goes for something off the top, but Show catches him and finishes with the Show-Stopper at 12:04. * Not awful, but incredibly dull.
The Dudley Boyz vs. T & A (w/ Trish Stratus):
(Bubba Ray & D'Von Dudley vs. Test & Albert)
Taped on Wall Street on October 25th, 2000. The only reason a nothing match like this is featured is because it was to signify the day that the WWF became a publicly traded company. What's worse, a tag team named after a juvenile way to describe boobs and ass, or a wrestling company named after it? The answer is obvious. D'Von and Albert start, with Albert putting the boots to D'Von. He meets a boot on a charge and gets rocked with a shoulder tackle. The Dudleys with a double boot and suplex on Albert. Test with a cheap shot from the apron, allowing Albert to lay D'Von out with a clothesline. Whip to the ropes and T & A with a double elbow for two. D'Von with rights, but he runs right into a boot from Test. He gets a boot up as Test comes off the middle rope and hot tags Bubba Ray. He sends Test to the ropes and hits an awkward tackle for two. Albert rushes in and hits his partner by mistake. Bubba Ray sweeps the leg and D'Von with the WASSUP headbutt to Albert. Bubba Ray calls for the tables, but it's not happening. Test cuts them off and eats a 3-D for the quick three count at 3:09. Not really going to rate a public exhibition like this.
Final Thoughts: That wraps up the main feature of the DVD set, clocking in at nearly 4 ½ hours. As someone who can watch anything, I'd say I would watch this set in small doses, maybe a couple of matches here and there, regardless if you're a casual or hardcore fan. You can only watch so many "leftover" matches from TV and PPV that were clearly not designed to be great performances, and the lack of commentary does become a factor after so long. With that out of the way, I'd really like to stress how great of an idea it was to finally make a compilation of rarely seen footage instead of relying on recycling the same old stuff. Even though only a few matches stood out as above average quality, only a handful of the matches featured stood out as time wasters, and some of the lower quality matches were at least reasonably short. Coming up in Part 2, the Bonus Features (Disc 3 of the standard set) and the Blu Ray exclusives.
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