WWE Summerslan - August 23, 2009
-The hype package opening the show is interrupted by Shawn Michaels and Triple H making shadow puppets and altering it. They suggest their opponents, Dibiase and Rhodes, are in love with one another (if thatís not a case of projection, I donít know what is). Itís kind of lame, but itís also something different, so huzzah.
-From Los Angeles, CA. Our hosts are Jim Ross, Todd Grisham, Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler, Josh Matthews, and Matt Striker.
Rey Mysterio © vs. Dolph Ziggler
These two had a good *** match at the last pay-per-view, so letís see if they can top it. Ziggler is hungry but Mysterio is all business, and the action goes back and forth. Mysterio nails a standing moonsault for an early near fall. Rey delivers a hurricarana off the apron to the floor. Dolph sloppily counters another hurricarana into a turnbuckle powerbomb, allowing him to take control. Rey shows signs of life but eats a hard clothesline, allowing Ziggler to retain the advantage. Big gut buster by Ziggler gets a near fall. Springboard senton by Rey, who rolls through a sunset flip to build some momentum. Ziggler counters a springboard with a drop-kick, evening the playing field. The pace quickens with some extremely convincing near falls by Dolph, with some surprise counters along the way. Reyís second 619 attempt connects but the diving head butt doesnít! Ziggler makes a cover but only gets 2! Thereís an audible ďLetís go, ZigglerĒ chant from the fans, just so you know. Rey counters a second rope gut buster with a hurricarana for the win at 12:24! The finishing sequence was fantastic, it reminded me of the great matches Rey had with Jericho earlier this year, ***ľ.
Winner and still Intercontinental Champion: Rey Mysterio
-Backstage, Josh Matthews interviews Jack Swagger and MVP, describing their match as a ďculture clash.Ē Swagger puts over his accomplishments and dismisses MVP as an ex-con. MVP takes offense to this and reminds us that he already paid for his decisions (not mistakes, he chose to break the law). Good stuff, actually.
Jack Swagger vs. MVP
Swagger takes a hike after getting bested, allowing MVP to hit a dive to the floor. MVP tries to set something up on the ropes, but Swagger sweeps him off. Swagger goes to work on the back. MVP escapes an abdominal stretch, but a clothesline by Swagger sets up a chinlock. MVP counters with a back drop, and both men appear to be exhausted (at four minutes into it). Balliní elbow drop connects, butt Swagger counters the Playmaker. The Vader Bomb is blocked! The Playmaker finishes it at 6:21. Nothing special here, *Ĺ.
-Lots of stuff with celebrities that I fast forwarded through.
Unified Tag Team Championship:
Chris Jericho and Big Show © vs. Cryme Tyme
Apparently Iím not the only one tired of celebrities, as Jericho cuts a promo against them and claims he and Show are more famous. Show goes to speak, but they are interrupted by Cryme Tymeís music and the match is on! JTG manages to keep up with Jericho in the early going. Jericho ultimately hits a closed fist to the head and tags in Big Show, who overpowers the smaller star. Shad gets a warm tag and squares off with Show. Shad fights off Jericho with a press slam, but Show spears the life out of him! Shad becomes the face in peril as Show and Jericho keep the tags coming. JTG eventually gets a hot tag and cleans house on Jericho. Show breaks up a cover, but Shad dumps him from the ring. JTG rolls up Jericho but only 2! Jericho locks on the Walls, but JTG makes the long crawl to the ropes! Show delivers a knockout punch to JTG, allowing Jericho to get the pin at 9:42. The match was decent, not really worthy of the second biggest show of the year though, **Ĺ.
Winners and still Unified Tag Team Champions: Big Show and Chris Jericho
-Backstage, Josh Matthews interviews CM Punk. Punk has a screenplay for a Jeff Hardy movie and apparently the ending has Hardy conquering Punk in tonightís main event. Punk berates the citizens of Los Angeles for being fake, just like Jeff Hardy. Iím really loving Punk as the philosophical heel who isnít wrong, per say, just really preachy and overbearing.
The Great Khali (with Ranjin Singh) vs. Kane
As you might expect, the match kicks off with a lumbering slug-fest. And it continues with one. Khali misses a leg drop and eats a drop-kick. They block each otherís chokeslams, with Khali getting the upper hand. Kane manages to apply a chinlock. Khali fights out and very slowly cleans house. Kane escapes the vice grip by getting into the ropes and pulling Singh into the ring. Kane drop-kicks the knee and delivers a DDT for the win at 5:56. The match was a DUD. Next!
Triple H and Shawn Michaels vs. Ted Dibiase and Cody Rhodes
A lot of work went into the DX entrance, as a bunch of soldiers fire blanks into the air and HBK and HHH ride out on a tank. HHH and Dibiase start with the usual routine. Overwhelmed, Dibiase tags in Rhodes, who quickly slaps HBK on the apron for no reason other than to be a giant cock (letís see how many hits our site gets now with that last comment). Rhodes slaps HBK again, prompting HBK to become more aggressive. Legacy appears to be working really hard to keep up with the wily DX veterans. Legacy manages to isolate Michaels and work him over. Triple H tags in and is all fired up, but seems to have to work to fight Rhodes and Dibiase off. Legacy succeeds in overpowering Triple H and isolating him. After a lengthy beating, HHH makes a hot tag to Michaels, who cleans houseÖ until Dibiase clotheslines him from behind. Rhodes attempts a flying elbow drop on HBK and misses! Rhodes tries to block a flying elbow but gets knocked off the top. Instead, Rhodes has to settle for countering the elbow with his knees! Michaels bounces back with a figure four, but Dibiase saves. HHH joins the fray, but Legacy knock him down. All four men battle in the ring, hitting finishers left and right. HHH and Dibiase battle into the announce table, leaving HBK and Rhodes to settle it. Michaels delivers Sweet Chin Music for the win at 19:30! I wasnít expecting to like this match, but it featured a lot of great tag team wrestling. I have to really take my hat off for DX, they made Legacy look like a million bucks in this one, ****.
Winners: Triple H and Shawn Michaels
Christian © vs. William Regal (with Vladimir Kozlov and Ezekiel Jackson)
Regal turns to remove his robe, Christian jumps him and delivers the Killswitch for the win at 0:09. Hello, DUD, nice to meet you. Itís sad that on the second biggest pay-per-view of the year, they delivered a match that could be given away in itís entirety for free during the next ECW episodeís opening video.
Winner and still ECW Champion: Christian
-Christian might have won the match, but heís not going to win this battle, as Jackson and Kozlov storm the ring and lay a beating on him. Regal poses with his henchmen, suggesting that their issue is far from over.
Randy Orton © vs. John Cena
The match begins with some polite mat wrestling, but it doesnít take long for Orton to become aggressive. Cena is happy to return the favor. Orton takes control with his cold and calculating ways. Cena powers out of a chinlock and unleashes his arsenal on the champion. Orton counters the Attitude Adjustment and the match evens out until Cena goes tumbling to ringside. Orton sets Cena up on the ropes and waits until the fourth count to nail a DDT. That was so awesome, I almost forgot how boring the first ten minutes have been. Orton misses the death punt, giving Cena an opening. Top rope leg drop gets 2 for Cena. Orton blocks the Attitude Adjustment and they take each other out with clotheslines. They trade shots, with the crowd mainly favoring Orton. Cena gains the upper hand, so Orton shoves the referee to draw a DQ at 13:27 and takes a hike. Luckily, Lillian Garcia receives word that Mr. McMahon is restarting the match and Orton will lose the belt if heís disqualified. The match continues, but Orton decides to take a count-out instead, apparently losing at 15:34. The match is restarted again, this time with count-outs resulting in a title loss. They block finishers, but Orton gets a pin with his feet on the ropes for the win at 15:52. However, another referee points out the cheating and we get ANOTHER restart. Cena locks on the STF. A fan dives into the ring (later revealed to be one of the Dibiase boys). Everything comes to a screeching halt, as Cena just kind of stands there. Orton sneakily RKOís Cena onto the ropes and again in the ring. Orton finally wins at 17:41. All the overbooking goofiness might not have seemed so bad if Orton was going to lose and get his ultimate comeuppance, but as it stands none of it really worked or generated that much crowd heat. This was mainly boring and didnít do any favors for either man, *.
Winner and still WWE Champion: Randy Orton
TLC match for the World Heavyweight Championship:
Jeff Hardy © vs. CM Punk
Punk gets the early upper hand in the ring, and doesnít waste time getting a chair involved. Punk goes for a quick win but Hardy pushes the ladder out from under him. Hardy unleashes his patented offense on Punk. Hardy climbs, but Punk knocks him off by kicking the ladder. Hardy runs off a chair, but Punk catches him and slams him down on the back of it! DAMN! Punk abuses Jeff with the ladder. Punk hits a suicide dive and sets up a table at ringside. Punk misses a wild chair shot, giving Jeff an opening to rebound. Hardy places Punk on a table and dives off the top ropesÖ and misses! Punk climbs a larger ladder, but Jeff climbs past. Punk attempts a GTS, but Jeff powerbombs him off! Jeff climbs but Punk pushes him over, causing him to land awkwardly on the ropes. Punk superplexes Hardy onto a ladder! That looked like a brutal landing for both of them! Jeff rebounds with a Twist of Fate but the Swanton Bomb is blocked. Punk goes for his bulldog, but Jeff tosses him through the table at ringside. Jeff tries to climb, but Punk springboards into him. Punk wraps Jeffís head in a chair, but canít follow through with the ring post attack. Jeff unleashes his rage with a series of chair shots! Jeff sets Punk on the ECW announce table and positions a gigantic ladder next to it. Swanton off the ladder connects! DAMMIT ALL! The match is still going on as medical assistants try to place Jeff on a stretcher. Jeff refuses the help and struggles into the ring as Punk eyes the ladder. Punk hops up the ladder on one leg but Hardy meets him on the top and they slug it out. Punk kicks Jeff off and claims the belt at 21:29! This was probably as about as extreme as a PG ladder match could get, but both men worked really hard and took a lot of hard bumps to put on a memorable spectacle. This was a great main event, ****.
Winner and new World Heavyweight Champion: CM Punk
-CM Punk is standing over Jeff, celebrating his title win, when suddenly the lights go off and the Undertakerís music hits. The lights come back on and Undertaker is laying where Jeff had been. Undertaker chokeslams the life out of Punk, sending a big message as well as sending the fans home happy.
Final Thoughts: So the question you should be asking me is this: should I buy the DVD? Iím going to recommend a rental (I got this on Netflix). You see, the DX/Legacy and Punk/Hardy matches were definitely worth seeing, but the rest of the show just didnít hold up well. I have a feeling youíll be seeing the two good matches pop up on other DVD sets eventually (I can imagine another DX DVD in the process, and the TLC match is bound to show up one way or another). This is definitely an okay show, just not worth adding to your collection unless you are a completist. If this were any other company, I might advise a purchase, but the nature of WWEís film library ensures you wonít be missing anything.
Thumbs in the middle.