Thursday, February 10, 2011

WWE High Flyers Disc 2: Co-Review

WWE High Flyers Disc 2

1) Ultimo Dragon vs. Chris Jericho (WCW Bash at the Beach ’97, 7/13/97) – A:6 J:7

A: Dragon really looked motivated here. His kicks were really stiff and his armdrags were really Steamboat-esque. Jericho hit really two hard powerbombs right in a row. They tried a really risky spot where both were on the top buckle and Jericho was supposed to dropkick Dragon. However, it looked like Dragon mistimed when he was supposed to jump and it just looked sloppy in execution. Jericho really was on top of his games here too. Everything looked crisp and his selling was good. Fast paced bout that was better than I remember it being.

J: Adam did a good job covering most of the highlights of the moves, but I want to talk about the chemistry between these two. They knew each other pretty well and it showed in spades. Both guys would commit to a high risk move even before the other guy was in place, that's how comfortable they were. And both men were stiff, kicking and fighting like a starving landlord (oxymoron for you) Both men had counters for counters all day. Dragon does some good body part selling too. Loved the play off the powerbomb attempt into a reversal that played into the fiinish. They actually pulled off so many great moves that worked, that dropkick spot Adam mentioned was just a french fry crumb on a grease stained Mcdonalds tray that Eric Bischoff deposited into his assistant's pants after lunch for fun.

2) The 1-2-3 Kid vs. Hakushi (WWF SummerSlam ’95, 8/27/95) – J:4 A:5

J: This was a nice change of pace. Two lest talked about names from the 90's that could perform. Both guys keep pace with the outside dives, and kicks, which speaking of Shinzaki busts Xpac's mouth open with a nasty kick that didn't even happen when he filmed that adult film after getting punched in the chin with Chyna's cock. Pace was all over the place, Jinsei seemed not all focused on everything, opening sequence would have been fine on a Superstars Sat morning broadcast but expected a little more from a ppv bout. Wonder what the Kliq had on the line as betting material for best match that night?

A: I enjoyed the bout myself. This was a standout match on a card that was full of “gems” such as Bob Holly vs. HHH and Diesel vs. Mabel. Hakushi was in control I’d estimate for 97-98% of the bout. Jessie covered everything for the most part. I liked Hakushi’s running dive to the outside. Fun little match but nothing to really recommend.

3) John Morrison vs. Tyson Kidd (WWE Superstars, 7/30/09) – A:6 J:6

A: Kidd got a really strong showing in, busting out a crazy neckbreaker about midway through the bout. Morrison got a really good corkscrew plancha in. Final few minutes were really good with high-risk moves from both and a really hard knee from Morrison. I liked Kidd’s vocal screaming that added to an otherwise dull headlock sequence. I’ve never been a fan of the “Starship Pain” move from Morrison as it looks, at least to me, like he can barely squeeze all the rotations in in the 1-second span or so that he’s in the air. Kidd was just bouncing up and down like a basketball during the initial part of Morrison’s comeback instead of selling what just happened to him. Other than those few little things, good showcase match for both guys.

J: Yeah Kidd's perpetual smile was puzzling but guess he was trying to give the suits in the back a reason to keep him around, god knows workrate isn't enough. The key here is Kidd is a great hand, but Morrison was on. I actually noticed him in Kidd's headlock and he looked like he couldn't get the right fluff in his pillow instead of having his neck wrenched. They spaced out the moves that got a pop, and the Hart Dynasty was well used while they were there. Kidd has a knack for getting underneath Morrison for all his high flying stuff which just makes it look 100 % better. Morrison looked like a Christina Aguilera back up dancer near the end, just making sure he was in the right spot for his cue but the ending worked. This ranks up there with his singles v. Edge and the Sheamus ladder match as Morrison's best, in my eyes.

4) Triangle Ladder Match: Edge & Christian vs. The Hardy Boyz vs. The Dudley Boyz (WWF WrestleMania 2000, 4/2/00) – J:6 A:6

J: I've covered this match before, possibly twice, and recently re-watched it with Matt and Jeff's commentary overdubbed, to which they said some interesting things, such as there is too much going on, not enough care is put into establishing story and pace, as they would these days. Matt also commented "Bubba's going to get in his stuff off, no matter what." I should mention Matt seemed completely inebriated during it. My thoughts stand the same, it's recommendable for historical signifigance, a multitude of great spots, namely Jeff and Christian's performances, as well as the crazy Swanton. If youcould care less about those, and have seen this before, look for some 90's El Samurai online and educate yourself about the finer points of the DDT.

A: Personally, after watching this again, I think this may be a tad bit over-rated. Yes, the highspots such as Jeff missing a 450 and crashing on a ladder, Bubba gaving Matt an ill powerbomb off the Spanish announce table, Matt taking a big bump through a table at the end, and the famous spot of Jeff diving off a giant ladder to but Bubba Ray through a table (which Bubba promptly sold like he was taking a quick snooze), were nice but in the end it felt more like a stunt show than a wrestling match. However, I do recommend this since it was the fore-runner to the awesome TLC match a year later between these two at ‘Mania 17.

5) Three Way Elimination Match: Super Crazy vs. Tajiri vs. Little Guido (ECW One Night Stand ’05, 6/12/05) – A:5 J:3

A: This felt a lot like a match that could’ve been found on an ECW TV show. As a matter of fact, I recall these three going at it on an episode of ECW on TNN in the spring of 2000. Anyway, everything that you would possibly expect from these three was presented. Crazy did a balcony moonsault onto the entire F.B.I. entourage and Tajiri dusted off the tarantula and the green mist. Guido was there primarily as a punching bag and to get the F.B.I. on the show. The match was a sprint, compressed down into about seven minutes. Fun for nostalgia and not really anything else.

J: Dear God, Mikey Whipwreck back on my TV, is this Dec 21st, 2012? Joey Styles had a knack for calling the ECW action though, he made a lot of stuff bearable. If you mean this match felt like a match that played on TNN back when ECdub was on the air by this being a rushed, hyperbole of spots made famous a decade go now prostituted by being included in a souless "best of" compliation of the good matches these 3 had years ago, you're damn right. That being said, Crazy's moonsault was a fun moment, not near as fun as watching Ricky Gervais lambast a room full of Hollywood prima donnas who can't take a joke but still fun. The whole first fall was a major cluster. Final fall with Tajiri and Crazy had some real awkward pauses in it, like doing vocals for a song on "Rock Band" you've never heard and didn't do a thing for me. I'll give this a 3 and that's being kind.

6) Brian Pillman vs. Alex Wright (WCW Great American Bash ’95, 6/18/95) – J:7 A:6

J: Totally unrelated, the guy that always wears the pink windbreaker was in the front row and he still had hair, he looked like Judge Doom; yikes. The opening 10 minutes was all on the mat, and people never remember Pillman was great on the mat, so I wasn't bored at all here. Timing was on with both guys and when Wright couldn't make a spot work, Pillman would. Not sure the story behind Brian's pants though, maybe he borrowed them from Cher's wardrobe. Loved Pillman's aggression, hit the first chop, then pulled him outside and ripped that Wonder Punk (Heenan's pet name for him) chest wide open. Liked Pillman going all Stu Hart-Dungeon on him in the later rounds. Pillman's uppercut dropkick and leap onto the ropes nuts first were both so fucking balls out i don't know how he had pants on. Finish was cool and was not what i expected, this is the surprise of the set so far.

A: What a pleasant surprise this turned out to be. Pillman’s intensity in certain spots was fantastic and the mat work was well done too. I really dug the strike exchange they had about mid-way through the bout. Wright suplexed Pillman to the outside and the capitalized on that with a dive. Pillman upped the ante with a dive of his own and then an attempted high-risk move off the second rope wihich conclued with him eating the railing. The two spots that Jessie mentioned with Pillman, especially the dropkick, were just so fucking awesome. The aerial stuff took a while to get going but once it did, it was really good.

7) The Great Muta vs. Sting (WCW Japan Supershow, 3/21/91) – A:6 J:5

A: Really dug the pace these guys set. They started out wild with Muta going for the moonsault early on and then Sting gorilla pressing Muta over the top rope and Sting doing a wild dive right afterwards. Rest of the match was them matching each other move for move. Selling was pretty much non-existent. Sting had the most memorable sell where he tried for a gorilla press then just flopped down as if his back gave out on him. Match stayed in the ring mostly, only spilling to the outside a handful of times. Green mist to finish Sting out of nowhere was a nice spot but Sting doing a post-match scorpion death lock felt out of place.

J: These two had such an awesome rivalry, would love to see both of their crippled asses duke it out right now, in 2011. About the opening sequence, fun opening but it didn't really set an established pace. Sting's dive was nuttier than trail mix but the gorilla press before it was weak sauce. Thought Sting's front facelock was just to kill time. There's nothing quite like watching Muta in his prime, his movement is some of the crispest I've ever seen. But I would disagree with no selling, Muta shows a lot of exhaustion and Sting's working the kinks out of his arm moments before dropping Muta from the gorilla slam. Having seen hours of their matches together, this would be in the bottom half, match didn't have a lot of focus, and the ending was a bad version of a not very good finish. And the attack aftewards? What the hell was this about? Just go grab some seaweed sushi from the back and call it a night.

8) Rob Van Dam vs. Jerry Lynn (WWF Sunday Night Heat, 8/5/01) – A:5 J:4

J: Oh Christ, Lynn's rocking a colored in moustache, what 9 to 5 job did he interview for that morning? Rob's strikes continue to be the equivalent of a 5 year old girls. Always had a soft spot for Lynn's counter legdrop in the ropes but his front somersault looked like he was falling into a swimming pool to avoid an angry bee. Lynn's German suplex was pure tits, not Brooklyn Decker level, but in the shallow end of them. Watching them squeeze all their trademark spots into their time allotted like trying to wear briefs again makes you wonder if they shouldn't have just shortened some of their long self-indulgent ECW spotfests? Nah, not if i keep seeing both guys do the mental equivalent of looking at their hands during their European Studies exam. Some nasty stuff went down though but this was all done in a vaccuum, in the end meaning as little as the $7 the dad in the front row wasted on popcorn that night.

A: If you really want to see a good RVD/Jerry Lynn match, check out their bout from Living Dangerously ’99 because everything from their series of matches in ECW was compressed here into a six-minute TV match. Lynn got in a couple good moves at the outset, the most notable being a running senton off the apron and a German suplex that almost broke RVD’s neck. RVD’s offense was crisp and Lynn busted out a couple good counters to that offense. Lynn lying like a corpse in position for the frog splash at the end, without exerting so much as a twitch, was pretty goofy looking to me.

Bonus Match:

* The Hardy Boyz vs. Funaki & Mens Teioh (WWF Sunday Night Heat, 9/27/98) –A:3 J:4

A: What a strange announce team for this match, Jim Cornette and Shane McMahon. Nothing but a giant sprint match here. Jeff tried to go for a springboard senton but crashed and burned on the outside. Funaki & Teioh didn’t get hardly any offense in and seved mostly as crash dummies for the Hardys. Tons of legal man issues made this a fun but sloppy showcase.

J:Again, doing a review with Adam has my fantasty booking chops salivating: Funaki v. Jeff 2011? Yes please. Fuck, Men's Teioh doing anything this year, even pumping gas on Youtube. Sprint (not the shitty phone service provider) it was, but I'll be damned if Kaientai didn't bump their asses off. Jeff's missed swanton, shit, that hurt my 30 year old out of shape ass sitting here watching it. I dug this though, more so than some of the ECW-redux stuff featured on this disc.

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