The SmarK Rant for WWF Rebellion 99 – 10.02.99
Continuing our journey through the UK-exclusive PPVs on the Network, and hopefully this one is better than the first one. Once again, no idea what’s on this show, we’re going in totally blind.
So we’re a few months after No Mercy UK, and now HHH is the WWF champion two times over already, and Vince Russo is gone as of this show.
Live from Birmingham, England, drawing 11,939.
Your hosts are Jim Ross & Michael Hayes
Intercontinental title: Jeff Jarrett v. D-Lo Brown
Jarrett’s pre-match promo about how women are only good for “cooking, cleaning and making babies”, complete with bringing a vacuum cleaner into the ring and making a fan clean the ring, is so hilariously stupid that you have to love it. And then he knocks the “fan” down and puts her in a figure-four for good measure for the topper. A little bit of Memphis never hurt anything. So this prompts Chyna to run down and make the save, beating Jarrett up and clotheslining him out of the ring.
And then onto the match, as Jarrett was the IC champion (working without a contract, as we learned later) and D-Lo was European champion, so they flip a sixpence, maybe a tuppence, and Jarrett has to defend his title. Brown slugs away and gets a powerslam for two, and a Sky High gets two. Jarrett retreats and decides to walk out with Miss Kitty while JR rages against chauvinism, which is kind of rich coming from him. D-Lo runs JJ back into the ring, so Jarrett gets a sleeper and chokes him out on the ropes. D-Lo misses a blind charge and Jarrett takes him down with an armbar, but D-Lo hits the running powerbomb and both guys are down. D-Lo comes back with a leg lariat and the legdrop for two. Brown goes up and lands on Jarrett’s foot, but Jarrett tries a sunset flip and D-Lo counters for two. Jarrett goes up and D-Lo brings him down with a superplex, and Jarrett cradles for two off that. Jarrett takes him down for the figure-four, but D-Lo boots him to the floor to escape and then goes after Kitty. But Jarrett brings the comically gigantic vacuum into the ring, hits D-Lo with it behind the ref’s back, and gets the pin at 6:00 to retain. This was a fun, dumb house show opener. **1/2.
Afterwards, JJ has had enough of Chyna and challenges her to settle things TONIGHT, IN THIS VERY RING.
The Godfather v. Gangrel
The irony of them showing the evils of male chauvinism and putting over female empowerment, and then following it up with THE GODFATHER and his harem of interchangeable scantily-clad women in the VERY NEXT MATCH, is stunning but still unsurprising. Godfather does not in fact offer Gangrel a ho tonight, perhaps because England has more stringent laws about that sort of thing. Godfather misses a charge and Gangrel slugs him down and chokes him out on the ropes before dropping a couple of elbows for two. Clothesline gets two. Gangrel goes up and misses a flying whatever, and Godfather comes back with the legdrop for two. This sets up the Ho Train, and the Pimp Drop to finish at 4:00. Another house show special. 1/2*.
Meanwhile, Chyna accepts the challenge of Jeff Jarrett, whom she accuses of having “Va-Chyna Envy.” But British Bulldog stops by and declares that no one cares about her, and everyone paid to see him instead. And now he’s going to go demand a WWF title match.
Val Venis v. Mark Henry
Well the jokes write themselves here. Speaking of which, Val lets us know that he has a lot in common with rugby: Both are played with balls, both can get a little rough, and the object is to always score. Well that was weak sauce. Man these first three matches are like a sample plate of Attitude Era opening match gimmicks. Val slugs him to the floor to start and follows with a baseball slide, but Henry drops him on the railing to take over. Back in the ring, Val tries to fight back with dropkicks, but Henry won’t go down, so Val gets a legsweep for two. Val clips the knee and drops elbows on him to set up the Money Shot at 3:00. Geez, Val completely squashed him. 1/2*.
Meanwhile, Bulldog bursts into Vince’s office and demands a title shot tonight, but Vince denies him and he snaps and tosses a trash can that knocks Stephanie out cold. So that was a plot twist where Steph was given amnesia to delay the wedding with Test while they figured out where to go without Russo, and then once they figured that out, they immediately forgot about it, pardon the pun, and went in a drastically different direction with the story.
WWF Women’s title: Ivory v. Luna v. Tori v. Jacqueline
I always forget that Luna was around at this point. Big mess of stuff to start as they all get near-falls and stumble around aimlessly. Jacqueline tries to take control with a slam on Luna for two, but Tori saves and they hit a double suplex for two. Ivory and Jackie slug it out and we get a completely ludicrous triple sleeper spot and everyone is out. Then they do midget spots with the ref getting abused, but Ivory hits Jackie with the belt and pins her at 3:17 to retain. Horrible. DUD
Meanwhile, Stephanie goes out on a stretcher, and Bulldog is unapologetic and he’s still getting his title shot.
Road Dogg v. Chris Jericho
The Outlaws were tag team champions for a couple of weeks in between Rock & Sock reigns at this point, which falls under the plethora of things I don’t remember about this time period. They immediately brawl into the crowd and back in for a beatdown from Road Dogg in the corner, but Jericho chokes him out to take over. Dogg whips him into the corner for a Flair Flip, but Jericho recovers with the springboard dropkick off the apron. Mr. Hughes gets some shots on the floor and Jericho suplexes Dogg back in for the arrogant cover, BAY BAY, for two. Jericho with a chinlock and surfboard and he chokes Dogg on the ropes and adds a sloppy slingshot splash for two. Jericho misses a charge but instead of bumping, he springboards into a bulldog for two in a neat spot.
You can see Jericho trying to do all this cool stuff and Road Dogg just wants to do the house show match, and it’s no wonder Jericho had a bunch of heat on him at this point. They fight to the top and Dogg brings him down with a superplex and makes the comeback with a neckbreaker for two. Jericho takes him down for the Walls of Jericho, but Dogg powers out of it, so Jericho puts him down with a german suplex and follows with the Lionsault. That misses and Road Dogg makes the comeback with his usual bullshit, but the ref is bumped and Hughes nails Road Dogg with a chair and puts Jericho on top for two. Not sure why that wasn’t the finish. So Dogg fights back again and takes out Hughes this time, but Jericho hits him in the nuts and pins him at 10:40. They tried too much at the end but clearly this was the best match of the show so far and Jericho was going to have a good match or die trying. ***1/4
Jeff Jarrett v. Chyna
This is non-title, apparently. Chyna puts him down with clotheslines as Jarrett bumps all over for her, and Chyna hits him in the junk and tries the Pedigree. Jarrett catapults her into the corner to escape that and puts the boots to her, but misses a charge and crotches himself again, allowing Chyna to put him down with an electric chair. And then Bulldog runs in for the DQ at 1:35 and hits her with a powerslam. “Just because she called him the ass end of a dog earlier in the show!” notes JR. Well…yeah. That’s a pretty good reason honestly. And then the announcers act like Bulldog is an awful person for attacking a woman and powerslamming her, even though she was just in a match with a different man.
So with appearances from Road Dogg and Bulldog back to back, I take the hint from the universe and do a dog-walking intermission before returning to the show again.
No DQ: Big Show v. Kane
For those like myself who have trouble keeping track, Big Show was the heel under the wing of the Undertaker at this point, and Kane was the babyface teamed up with X-Pac. They slug it out to start and Show dropkicks him out of the ring, but Kane necks Show from the apron and slugs away in the corner. Show missed that dropkick by two feet, but STILL. The hoss fight continues and Show puts him down with a headbutt for two and works the back. Show with the Nash choke in the corner, and he follows with an inverted DDT for two. It’s a good thing they’re in a foreign country, because they’re yelling spots so loudly that anyone who speaks English would be able to follow the entire match with their eyes closed. Show with a Boston crab but Show gets bored of that and lets it go, and Kane makes the comeback with the Kanezuigiri. Kane tries a slam and Show falls on top of him, but Kane comes back with a DDT and goes up with a flying clothesline. But then Show tosses him and sends him gently into the stairs. Back in, Show grabs a chair, but Kane kicks it back in his face and slams him for the pin at 8:00. Well keeping with my dog-walking metaphor, this was a pile of shit. 1/2*.
Meanwhile, HHH cares about nothing but the WWF Title, and Rock would have better luck “going out in the crackhole of England and finding someone with good teeth” than of winning the title from him.
X-Pac v. British Bulldog
Hey, more Bulldog, terrific. Michael Hayes gets the whopper of the night by saying “He’s never seen Bulldog in better condition”. Well clearly HE’S drunk tonight. Bulldog puts X-Pac down with shoulderblocks and catches a leg lariat attempt with a slam, then tosses him. X-Pac is already hurling his body all over the ring trying to get the unholy corpse of Davey Boy over. I’m pretty sure he was legally dead when he signed and they did a Frankenstein-like reconstruction by hooking him up to bionic leg braces and an industrial tub of steroids. Bulldog with a chinlock, but X-Pac fights out of it and Bulldog takes a half-assed bump into the corner to set up the Broncobuster. This is so incredibly sad. But then Bulldog crotches him on the top rope and powerslams him for the pin at 5:09. God bless Sean Waltman because he just went out and worked that whole match on his own. *.
Meanwhile, Crash and Hardcore Holly argue about stones and pounds.
Edge & Christian v. The Acolytes v. The Hollies
Edge backdrops Hardcore to start, but Bob hits the dropkick and brings Crash in. Christian with a crossbody, but Crash rolls through for two, so Christian gets a backbreaker for two. Hardcore slugs it out with Faarooq, and Faarooq powerslams him for two, but Bob puts him down with a back suplex and then they double-team Bradshaw. But then Crash goes up and gets crotched, and Bradshaw brings him down with a superplex. Clothesline from Hell eliminates the Hollies at 3:22.
E&C charge in with a double shoulderblock on Bradshaw for two, but he puts Edge down with a big boot and the Acolytes go to work on him. So now the teams have switched corners for some reason as well. Bradshaw tries a powerbomb and Edge backdrops out of that. Over to Christian, but Faarooq works him over and goes to a bearhug, and a spinebuster gets two. Double spinebuster gets two. This has been really sloppy for some reason. Christian fights back and DDTs Faarooq to set up the hot tag to Edge, but Bradshaw hits him with the lariat for two before Christian saves. Edge with the tornado DDT on Bradshaw for the pin at 9:00. What a weird match. As usual the Acolytes sold nothing and the babyfaces didn’t even get a comeback before winning. *1/2.
And after about 10 minutes of video packages while they set up the cage…
WWF title, steel cage: HHH v. The Rock
Man whoever invented the idea of hanging the cage above the ring deserves a spot in the Hall of Fame just for that. And then the cage still isn’t fully secured so the Rock does another 10 minutes of schtick before the match to burn more time. Finally we start the match TWENTY MINUTES after the end of the last one.
They slug it out to start and Rock wins that, but HHH puts him down with a back elbow and tries to climb out. Rock hauls him down and hits him with a lariat out of the corner before putting the boots to him. Rock goes up and gets hit with a shot on the way down, and HHH beats him down in the corner and follows with the high knee. Rock fights back and Hunter drops him on the turnbuckle and runs him into the cage to take over again. Rock fights back with a samoan drop, but HHH clotheslines him down again as they’re taking a while to get going here. Hunter with the climb and Rock follows him up and they both go flying off for the double down. Rock climbs next and makes it to the top of the cage before Hunter hauls him back in, and both guys fall on the top rope for a double crotching. And we know how important genitals are to both guys.
HHH recovers first and climbs again, but Rock brings him down and hits the Rock Bottom and they’re both down. Rock is up first and he climbs again, but Hunter brings him down with a back suplex this time and it’s another double down. Rock goes for the Rock Bottom, but HHH reverses to the Pedgiree and they’re both down off that. Hunter goes for the door, but the ref is bumped as Hunter grabs a chair, and Rock knocks it back and falls out of the ring to “win” with the referee out. So they brawl on the floor in this cage match and Rock beats on him with a chair after doing a promo and then stopping to do his own commentary while HHH bleeds. “He’s oozing monkey piss out of his own head!” notes Rock. Some might say that about Zoa Energy. OH YEAH I WENT THERE. Rock drops an elbow and puts Hunter through the announce table and they fight back into the cage, which is kind of dumb on Rock’s part. Just throw him back in and wait for the ref to revive! So Rock continues destroying Hunter, running him into the cage and hitting the DDT while that lazy Hebner finally does his damn job, but now Bulldog runs in and attacks Rock and throws him back into the cage. Shane brawls with Bulldog, but he also gets his ass kicked as a result, and then the Stooges run in and attack Bulldog as well. So then Bulldog goes in and beats on both guys until Rock takes him out and hits the Rock Bottom on HHH. So Rock goes for the door, and now Chyna runs in and slams the door on Rock’s head because she’s a babyface against Jarrett but still technically a heel with Hunter. So after all that, Hunter climbs out and Rock grabs him by the hair to block it and fights off Chyna as well. But Bulldog hauls Rock down, beats him down, and HHH finishes climbing out to retain at 22:20. Usual chaotic Attitude Era brawl here, but it was done really well. ***1/2.
And then to send the fans home happy, Vince comes out and locks Bulldog in the cage with the Rock, so that he can get some revenge with a People’s Elbow.
This was WAY better than the No Mercy UK show, not exactly great but everything was kept to a reasonable length and had the right finishes. If that last show was a bad 99 RAW, this was a good 99 RAW. I’d call it mostly worth checking out.