The SmarK Rant for WWF Insurrextion 2000 – 05.06.00
Is that even English?
Live from Earl’s Court in London, England, and the situation in the WWF is a little bit different since we last visited in 1999.
Your hosts are Jim Ross & Jerry Lawler
Too Cool v. Perry Saturn & Dean Malenko
Brawl to start and Sexay powerslams Saturn to immediately take control. Too Cool with the double elbow after some dancing, but Saturn puts Scotty down with an elbow and it’s over to Dean. Malenko with a legsweep as the announcers are already teasing dissention with the Radicalz and prepping for the breakup. Saturn with a low blow behind the ref’s back, and that gets two. Another double-team after Sexay gets suckered into the ring, and that gets two on Scotty. Scotty fights back with a rollup on Dean for two, but Saturn pulls the ref out this time and the Radicalz get into a shoving match, allowing Scotty to get a rollup on Dean for two. Sunset flip gets two. Scotty puts Malenko on the top rope, calling back to their spot at Backlash, but this time he’s able to hit a superplex without getting dropping on his damn head. Hot tag to Sexay and he cleans house with hiptosses and hits them with a double clothesline off the middle rope, and it’s BONZO GONZO. This sets up the rare Double Worm as the crowd loses their minds. The Radicalz regroup on the floor and Too Cool runs them into each other, setting up the Hip Hop Drop from Sexay on Saturn to finish at 7:00. Damn this was a fun opener and an immediate and striking improvement over the 99 shows. ***. Afterwards this prompts a brawl between Saturn and Malenko.
Meanwhile, Mae Young gives some training advice to the Kat.
Meanwhile, some creepy kids inform us that Judgment Day is coming. The payoff would be even more terrifying than we could have dreamed. Yes, I can only mean one thing: UNDERTAKER’S SLACKS!
Vince McMahon joins us to address “you Brits” and talk about being disappointed in HHH losing the WWF title to the Rock six days ago. But he’s not disappointed! Because the match wasn’t fair and everything was conspiring against him. But every stable genius has a plan, and his plan is for HHH and Shane McMahon to team up and win the title back. And Rock is lucky that nothing newsworthy ever happens in England and thus no one will hear about the title change or care. And since there’s no Earl Hebner or Linda tonight, Vince guarantees a new champion tonight.
Bull Buchanan v. Kane
Kane attacks to start, apparently feuding with Big Bossman at this point. Don’t remember that at all. Kane tosses Bull for some abuse and brings him back in for more abuse, but Bull messes up a backdrop bump and then comes back with a DDT of sorts. Bull with his one good move, the springboard kick, and he drops a leg for two. Kane slugs back in the corner and chokeslams Bull for the pin at 2:32. Well it was fast at least. 1/2*.
Meanwhile, HHH and Stephanie cuddle in the back, doing a really convincing job of making people believe that they’re actually a couple.
Road Dogg v. Bradshaw
I’m guess this was supposed to be a tag match but X-Pac is out. And although D-X was a dumpster fire in 2000, the Run DMC remix still slaps and you can’t take that away from it. Faarooq joins us on commentary but offers a disclaimer that the match won’t take long so he won’t be there for long. The Acolytes quickly double-team Road Dogg on the floor and Faarooq gets ejected, so he was right about that. Into the ring, Bradshaw whips Dogg into the corner and suplexes him for two. Another whip to the corner while Lawler tries out his rhyming slang, sounding about as cool as Road Dogg’s pre-match promo in the process. Bradshaw with a torture rack and Road Dogg escapes that, so Bradshaw puts him down with a big boot for two. Another whip to the corner but Dogg gets a DDT and they’re both down, as Dogg gets two. Bradshaw tries the powerbomb and Dogg backdrops out of that and dropkicks him to the floor, but Bradshaw completely no-sells it and spears him to cut him off again. Dogg makes the comeback and hits the shaky kneedrop for two and Bradshaw is barely even acknowledging any of this shit. And then he hits the Clothesline from Hell, but gets distracted by Tori and Dogg rolls him up for two. Dogg with the pumphandle slam, however, and that gets the pin at 6:14. I’m surprised that Bradshaw didn’t kick out at 3 just to fuck him over some more. *1/2
Arm wrestling challenge: Terri v. The Kat
Hosted by Jerry Lawler of course. So we get endless stalling of course and Terri does “stretching” to prepare, and then they actually do the match and Mae Young dumps water on Terri and Kat wins, at which point Terri pulls off Kat’s top off-camera. And yeah that’s the segment.
The Dudley Boyz v. Big Show & Rikishi
Or more specifically, “Showkishi”, during his wacky cosplay phase. D-Von attacks Show to start and gets nowhere, as Show puts him down with the big boot and follows with a corner clothesline. Over to Bubba, and Rikishi hits him with a samoan drop, but the Dudleyz double-team him while JR and King make poop jokes about Rikishi. Bubba with a DDT in the corner, but Rikishi no-sells it and superkicks him for two. Dudleyz double-team him again to set up the Wazzup drop, although it wasn’t called that yet. D-Von drops an elbow for two as this drags on, but Rikishi makes the hot tag to Big Show and he splashes both guys in the corner. This sets up a stereo Stinkface, but tables are gotten, and then Edge and Christian run in and spear Bubba behind the ref’s back. Chokeslam finishes at 7:07. This was, to quote Lawler from earlier, “a load of Jackson Pollocks”. DUD. But then Too Cool comes out and they bond with the Dudleyz, setting up a six-man dance party. Don’t know why we needed to sit through that boring match if the dancing was what they wanted to showcase.
Meanwhile, Kurt Angle tours England looking for any kind of intelligence, integrity or intensity.
Meanwhile, Chris Benoit is sporting a giant shiner and he’s gonna take it out on Kurt Angle.
Kurt Angle v. Chris Benoit
Angle gets a giant babyface pop coming out, so he immediately does a promo about England’s ugly children and how everyone needs to learn speak American, and that takes care of people cheering for him. But Benoit is also a heel so I’m not sure what the play is supposed to be there. I’m shocked they let Benoit go out there with his face all swollen up. Crash Holly also joins us on commentary, looking to fight an Englishman, but unable to find anyone in the back. Benoit with chops and a snap suplex for two, but Angle catches him with a stungun and then goes to the eye to send Benoit to the floor in pain. Angle runs him into the post and of course Benoit goes right into it facefirst with a broken orbital bone, and back in Angle chokes him out in the corner. Suplex gets two and Angle clotheslines him out of the corner for two. Angle runs him into the turnbuckle, but Benoit fires back with the rolling germans for two. Small package gets two. He takes Angle down with the crossface, but Angle grabs the ref to force a break. So Benoit hits him with a backdrop suplex and goes up for the diving headbutt, but that misses. Angle goes to the eye again and they slug it out, leading to the Angle Slam for the pin at 6:00. Hugely disappointing but not bad or anything. **1/2
Davey Boy Smith makes a surprise appearance, and he’s the Englishman that Crash Holly was looking to fight.
WWF Hardcore title: Crash Holly v. Davey Boy Smith
Smith grabs him from the desk and beats on him up the aisle, but Crash finds some weapons under the ring and chokes him out with various stuff. Crash sets up a chair, but Bulldog drops him on it and beats on him with kendo sticks. And the powerslam wins the title at 3:30. Not really much of a reaction for the hometown guy here. 1/4*.
Meanwhile, Edge & Christian have the nerve to CHARGE fans for autographs! Can you even imagine? Boo these men!
WWF tag team titles: Edge & Christian v. The Hardy Boyz
They trade some double-team stuff to start while JR & King make jokes about all the long hair on display, quipping that maybe Edge should do shampoo commercials next. FORESHADOWING! Matt runs Edge into Christian in the corner and rolls him up for two, and then hits Christian with the yodelling legdrop. Jeff with Poetry in Motion, but Edge runs Jeff into the railing and the champs take over. JR meanwhile notes that Lawler’s fascination with E&C’s hair is bordering on creepy. Exactly! Unless it’s HHH and his beautiful mane, that’s totally fine. Back in the ring, Christian with a chinlock as JR notes that all four men could have a long career ahead of them. I think we can confidently say that none of these guys will still be around 23 years later. That’s just ridiculous.
Jeff comes back with a rollup on Edge for two and he reverses a backslide attempt into a sunset flip for two, but Edge puts him down with a clothesline for a double down. Edge with the facelock to cut off the ring, and they double-team young Jeffrey Nero some more before Jeff gets a bodypress attempt for another double down with Edge. So Matt sneaks in with a flying elbow on Edge, and Jeff gets two off that. Hot tag Matt and he runs wild with the usual stuff and DDTs Christian for two. He goes up, but E&C bring him down with a double-stacked superplex for two in a cool move. Hardyz with a double facebuster on Christian for two, but Edge pulls out the ref to save. Hardyz with the Twist of Fate and Swanton, but Edge runs in with the bell for the DQ at 12:49 to retain. Just kind of a normal tag match, as there was a world of difference between their PPV classics and everything else they did. **1/2. Afterwards we get more Dudleyz, as they hit the ring and get revenge on E&C with a 3D on Christian before putting Edge through the table.
European title: Eddie Guerrero v. Chris Jericho
This is right after Chyna turned on Jericho to make Eddie the European champion, giving birth to Latino Heat. But then right after Jericho lost that title to Eddie, he beat Chris Benoit for the IC title on Smackdown, so they do a coinflip here to determine that it’s just the Euro title on the line. This whole period was a weird one for the secondary titles, as they quickly put both belts on Angle around Royal Rumble and then did the convoluted three-way match at Wrestlemania to get them both off him again without beating him, and then they bounced around with Jericho and Benoit. In fact Jericho lost the title back to Benoit on the RAW after this show.
Jericho slugs away on Eddie and clotheslines him to the floor, and back in for a surfboard, and Jericho gets a suplex with an arrogant cover for two. They head to the floor and Chyna catches Jericho with a cheapshot, allowing Eddie to take over. Eddie with a top rope rana for two and the Gory Special while Lawler hits new levels of annoying with the Mamacita stuff. They trade cradles and Eddie dropkicks him down again for two. Eddie with an abdominal stretch and he slugs away on the ropes, but Jericho fights back with a faceplant. They trade rollups and Eddie gets an upside down Gory Special this time, allowing Jericho to flip out of it and then put Eddie down with a faceplant. They slug it out and Jericho misses a blind charge, but he comes back with the bulldog for two. Flying forearm gets two. Jericho tries a powerbomb and Eddie reverses to a rana, putting them both on the floor in a scary bump, and Eddie claims a career-ending back injury to the ref. So this allows Chyna a chance to hit Jericho with a DDT, and Eddie recovers and gets two. Jericho comes back with the powerbomb on the second try, but Chyna takes the ref while Jericho gets the moonsault. So he takes her out with the dropkick, but Eddie grabs the belt, and WHAMMY, retains the title at 11:50. Crowd wasn’t quite feeling the Latino Heat yet but this was really good and clearly the match of the night so far. ***1/2.
Meanwhile, Shane tells HHH that the plan is for Hunter to hit the Pedigree on Rock and then wham, Shane wins the title, ding ding ding. Hunter disagrees with this plan.
WWF World title: The Rock v. HHH v. Shane McMahon
Team McMahon attacks Rock to start, but he fights them off and the heels both bump to the floor. So Rock steals the King’s crown and puts it on Shane before punching it off again. Back in the ring, the brothers-in-law double-team Rock to take over again and HHH drops elbows on him on the apron. HHH and Shane take turns slugging Rock down, but Shane hurts his hand from punching too hard and so Hunter does his own version of the Shane Shuffle. So this allows Rock to fight back and he does a double Bionic elbow on them, before walking into a facecrusher from HHH that gets two. Vince with some choking from the floor and HHH suplexes Rock into a Shane flying elbow, and HHH drops the knee for two. Hunter with the sleeper while JR notes that “some people” say that Vince is the devil himself. “I bet it’s disgruntled employees who would say that” notes Lawler. “Well there’s a lot of them” JR replies. And you thought AEW All Access dished the dirt!
We get the goofy triple sleeper spot, but Rock escapes while Vince quips “What the hell was that?” from ringside. I love shoot comments that aren’t supposed to be shoot comments. Hunter puts Rock down for two, but Shane makes the save and this ends their truce. So Shane goes up and misses a moonsault on Hunter, allowing Rock to come back with DDTs on both guys, but now Steph takes the ref. So Rock slugs away on both McMahons in the corner, and Shane escapes and tries a Pedigree on the Rock. But he can’t do the move, which draws a laugh from the crowd, and the ref is bumped. So Rock goes after Vince, which allows HHH to knock Rock out with the title for the visual pinfall. So Gerald Brisco, referee for hire, runs in and counts two. Next up, Shane grabs a chair, but he screws up again and hits HHH, so Vince comes in and attacks Rock himself. So Rock turns around and Vince does the classic gulp, but it’s KICK WHAM PEDIGREE for two.
This means the end of Brisco at the hands of HHH and we get another Pedigree, so now Vince does his backup plan and steals the ref shirt, declaring himself the official. But then Earl Hebner runs out and takes out Vince himself, prompting Vince to swing at him and hit the post by mistake. Back in the ring, HHH goes up, but Shane screws up again and crotches HHH by accident while Vince chases Hebner around like a cartoon character. So Vince runs into the ring and walks into a Rock Bottom, and Shane takes the spinebuster and People’s Elbow, and of course Earl counts the pin on Shane at 14:40 to retain. This was a ridiculously over the top Looney Tunes cartoon of a main event but it was lots of fun and a good end to the show. ***
But of course, HHH would return at Judgment Day.
I guess the final call on this one depends on your perspective. As a nothing UK PPV I’d say this somewhat overdelivered, but looking at the lineup on paper and coming off the Backlash PPV, I’d call it something of a disappointment. So I think it stands as a solid thumbs in the middle show, a pleasant distraction for 2 hours and not much more.
After I finished the rant and posted it here, I went to save the document and Word told me that there already was a file with the same name. PLOT TWIST: I already reviewed this show on the WWE Network during the pandemic and it was so forgettable that I literally forgot I did it. Nobody ever said this was an easy job.