EVENT REVIEW: ECW Double Tables 1995

February 4th, 1994
ECW Arena, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

It was a brand new year in the Land of Extreme as ECW presented their first supercard of 1995, Double Tables. 
Named after the main event, which saw The Public Enemy defending the tag team titles against Taz and Sabu in a double tables match, the show also saw the first appearance on an ECW supercard of notable Extreme alumni Raven and Al Snow. 
That's literally the best introduction I've been able to write despite sitting here for 20 minutes, so, without further ado, let's head down to the famous ECW Arena.

Welcome to Double Tables 

The first thing you notice about ECW Double Tables 1995 is how badly the video footage has aged.

I spent most of my early ECW reviews from ‘93 to late ‘94 commenting on the low budget production, only for things to pick up by the time of November to Remember ‘94, only for things to immediately take a turn for the worst in early 95 as an out-of-focus Joey Styles welcomed us to the ECW arena.

To give the company some credit, they had at least invested some money in a second camera, which meant that in addition to the usual hard cam footage, we now also got close ups of the stars as they made their way out.
ECW Double Tables '95 - Jason Knight and Joey Styles


The first person to recieve this treatment was Jason, who was introduced by Styles for a ringside interview.

Kicking off the show, Jason sadly proved that despite having a wealth of charisma, he couldn’t really cut a decent promo to save his life.

After putting himself over a little, the self-proclaimed “Sexiest Man on Earth,” first introduced his boys, The Pitbulls, then spent forever building up to the reveal of his latest acquisition, W*ING star Jason the Terrible.
ECW Double Tables '95 Review - The Pittbulls


So I guess we now had two terrible Jasons in one segment.

The Pitbulls (Pitbull #1 & Pitbull #2] & Jason 8The Terrible (w/ Jason) vs. Hack Meyers & The Young Dragons (Young Dragon 1 & Young Dragon 2)

As opening matches go, this one wasn't all that great. 

It all started off as a showcase for the brute power and dominant force of The Pitbulls, as they tore The Young Dragons limb from limb and, at one point, almost crippled one of them thanks to a sloppy suplex from Pitbull #2. 
ECW Double Tables 1995 - Jason The Terrible


Hack Meyers faired a little better against Jason's men, the audience rallying behind him with repeated chants of "Shah! Shah!" every time he landed a blow against one of The Pitbulls. 

However, with his partners spending the rest of the match stood on the apron like a couple of gormless jobber puddings, Meyers essentially found himself in a three-on-one handicap situation that proved too much for him. 

Things got worse for Meyers when Jason The Terrible finally tagged in, eliciting the biggest pop of the match as he stalked his way across the ring and took out Hack with a surprisingly impressive round-house kick. 

Eventually, the heels put their nemesis out of his misery, The Pitbulls lifting Jason into the air so that he could crash down on Meyers with a match-winning splash. 
Your Winners: Jason The Terrible  & The Pitbulls

Back at ringisde Jason The Manager insisted that the crowd hadn't paid enough to see any more of Jason The Terrible, and snt his new hired gun to the back. 

As all this was going on, Hack Meyers took his frustrations out on his useless partners, beating up on The Young Dragons before turning his attention to The Pitbulls, who promptly fled. 

At this point, Angel The Virgin Princess (yes, that was her name) showed up. 

The last I'd seen Angel, she had been introduced as the new valet for Tommy Cairo, but here, she was alone. 

Wearing an oversized wedding dress, The Virginal one confronted Meyers, who punched her in the face, a blatant act of misogyny that the ECW fans lapped up. 

Not done with her, Meyers next put Angel over his knee and gave her a good spanking, only for her to reveal that yes, she actually enjoyed it and wanted more. 

Angel tried smooching Meyers, but he apparently wasn't interested and planted her with a tiger driver instead. I mean, you could have just told the girl 'no,' Hack. 

Steve Richards (w/ Raven) vs. Tommy Dreamer 

Raven had recently arrived in Extreme Championship Wrestling and immediately set his sights on Tommy Dreamer, starting a legendary feud that would ultimately prove to elevate both men's status in the company. 

ECW Double Tables 1995 Review - Raven

As part of his vendetta, the former Johnny Polo had brainwashed Steve (not yet 'Stevie') Richards into hating Dreamer, hence tonight's match.

Despite being essentially Raven's stooge, Richards proved himself a credible opponent for the popular Dreamer, holding his own with some decent wrestling in the early part of the contest.

Things eventually spilled to the outside for the audience participation segment of the match as the fans handed Tommy various plunder with which to punish his opponent.

Undoubtedly the highlight of all this was the fan who simply held up a chair, hoping Dreamer would throw Richards into it.

Dreamer obliged, and Richards hit the chair hard enough that the surprised fan fell back into his chair.

Returning to the ring, Dreamer remained in full control, but the valliant Richards wouldn't quit.

Sensing that his henchman wasn't going to get the job done on his own, Raven hit the ring, holding Dreamer in place so that Stevie could super kick him in the mush.

With Raven gone, Stevie attempted another super kick. This time, Dreamer dropped to his feet and thrust upwards, winning the match with a double punch to the testicles.
Your Winner: Tommy Dreamer

Post match, Raven hit the ring, slipped out of his leather jacket and teased a showdown with Dreamer.

Before the two could square off, however, Richards and the referee held Raven back and he casually rolled back out of the ring, making his way to the back as Dreamer encouraged the fans' chant of 'p*ssy! p*ssy!'.

"Hey Raven, why don't you go back to the WWF!?!" Tommy eventually yelled on the microphone. "Give them a message that everyone in the ECW Arena said to KISS OUR ASS!"

As all this came to an end, Dreamer hit the crowd, leading them in another chant, this one that old, familiar battle cry of "ECW! ECW!".

With all this going on, commentator Joey Styles inexplicably laid into WWF Mania co-hosts, Todd Pettingill and Stephanie Wiand.

I get that the whole bashing-other-companies thing was edgy and new at the time, but now that we've all seen this tactic play out countless times to increasingly diminishing returns over the past 30 years, it's hard to get excited about it.

I mean, couldn't that time have been better spent progressing the Raven/Dreamer story? And really? Attacking Stepanie Wiand of all people just seemed cheap and lazy.

'The Giant' Paul Lauria (w/ Jason) vs. Mikey Whipreck

The joke here was that Paul Lauria wasn't really a giant at all. He was (according to Cagematch), only 5'5", even smaller than his opponent and former partner, Mikey Whipreck. 
ECW Double Tables - 'The Giant' Paul Lauria (w/ Jason) vs. Mikey Whipreck

The two had formed a short-lived team before a falling out prompted Lauria to turn heel and join Jason's stable.

Lauria attacked his rival before Whipreck could even make it to the ring, the latter getting the upperhand and throwing The Giant into the audience, only for the audience to throw him right back.

From there, the two clearly worked hard with the goal of delivering a tremendous match.

The problem was that neither man had the skills nor the experience to executive their ambition.

Lauria in particular looked completely exposed here. Very early on, he botched a simple baseball slide, and then began throwing himself around the ring with extraordinary awkwardness.

Not that Whipreck was entirely smooth here. As the match marched on towards its finish, he pulled off the ugliest headscissor takedown this writer has ever seen.

And yet somehow, all this clumsiness worked, resulting in a match that was far more entertaining than the sum of its individual parts.

After giving us the highlight of the match courtesy of a huge top rope bulldog, Mikey could've easily scored the fall, but instead had to not-so-subtly reposition himself so that Jason could break up the referee's count.

Whipreck neatly disposed of the dastardly manager on the outside, returned to the ring, and pulled off a backslide for the three count.
Your Winner: Mikey Whipreck

With no time to spare, we cut right to our next match.

Ian Rotten vs. Axl Rotten

We cut to this match with Axl Rotten rushing to the ring and pummeling on his brother, Ian Rotten.
ECW Double Tables '95 - Ian Rotten vs. Axl Rotten

Void of any discernible talent, the two resorted to punching, kicking, and mauling each other with plunder, though it was Axl who did most of the mauling.

In control for the majority of this bloody spectacle of boring garbage wrestling, Axl looked set to win, only for Ian to take out his legs from under him and get the win thanks to a ropes-assisted pin.
Your Winner: Ian Rotten

Post-match, Axl attacked once again and the two fought all the way to the back.

I know there are fans of that kind of wrestling, but I'm certainly not one of them.

Chris Benoit vs. ‘The Snowman’ Al Snow

Here, Al Snow was not the head-wielding weirdo we would eventually all come to know and love, but rather ‘The Snowman,’ a popular indie stalwart known less for his lunancy and more for his wrestling prowess.
ECW Double Tables '95 Review - 'The Snowman' Al Snow


Meanwhile, his opponent, Chris Benoit, had now officially adopted the nickname ‘The Crippler’ after destroying Sabu’s neck back at November to Remember ‘94.

The two locked up in an incredibly solid effort that was well deserving of its place in the conversation about 1995’s best pro wrestling matches.

A far cry from the barbaric garbage of the Rotten boys, this was a straight up wrestling match which didn’t rely on ECW’s trademark hardcore gimmickry but rather got over on the strength of pure, high-quality grappling.

Though Benoit dominated and eventually won, Snow was certainly not here in the role of jobber.
ECW Double Tables '95 Review - 'The Snowman' Al Snow vs. Chris Benoit


With his stellar reputation from the indie scene proceeding him, the future J.O.B Squad leader was every bit as captivating and on-form as his opponent.

Ultimately, however, it was not to be Al’s night.

Despite a very strong showing, Snow succumbed to Benoit’s bridging dragon suplex after an excellent fourteen and a half minutes.
Your Winner: Chris Benoit 

Afterwards, the crowd gave the match a standing ovation, but were less than pleased with Benoit -ever the consummate heel- attacking his rival with a powerbomb.

Snow was stretchered out, leaving Benoit’s reputation as ‘The Crippler’ in tact.

Extreme Championship Wrestling World Heavyweight Champion
ECW World Heavyweight Champion Shane Douglas vs. Tully Blanchard 

I’ll admit I don’t know how Tully Blanchard got himself into a title match with Shane Douglas, but I do know that the veteran grappler looked good as he took the fight right to the champion.
ECW Double Tables '95  - Shane Douglas ECW Champion


Though this wasn’t by any means the best match on the card, it was a decent bout nonetheless.

It was also pretty short for a title match, which is hardly surprising given that the champion was rarely the figurehead around which ECW revolved.

After getting his ass kicked on the outside, Douglas pulled out a roll-up from nowhere to retain his title.
Your Winner Still ECW Champion: Shane Douglas

Now, I’m not saying The Franchise was a fluke champion or anything, but a surprise roll-up was also how he’d won his previous high-profile title defense against Ron Simmons at November to Remember.

Texas Death Match
The Sandman (w/ Woman) vs. Cactus Jack 

Standard Texas Death Match rules were in full effect, meaning the object was to beat a man down so badly he couldn’t kick out of a fall nor answer a referee’s ten count.
ECW Double Tables '95  - The Sandman


With two names like The Sandman and Cactus Jack, you’d be forgiven for expecting  this match to be a wild, out-of-control brawl.

You’d be forgiven, but you’d be wrong.

Sure, Cactus came swinging right out of the gate, scoring a couple of quick near falls in the process after walloping Sandman over the head with a chair.

From there, however, things slowed down considerably, especially once The Sandman got legitimately knocked out and clearly had no idea what he was doing.

By this point, he was supposed to say down but the obliviously concussed grappler continued to pop back up.

Visibly frustrated with the outcome, Cactus hit three double arm DDTs on the outside to finally put this one to bed.
Your Winner: Cactus Jack 

Last but not least, it was time for our main event.

Double Tables Match for the ECW Tag Team Championship
ECW Tag Team Champions The Public Enemy (Flyboy Rocco Rock & Johnny Grunge) vs. Taz & Sabu (w/ Paul E. Dangerously & 911)

The show’s namesake match started -as the majority of ECW matches often did- with a wild brawl, this one quickly spilling out into the standards and flooding the arena with a stream of violence.

Back in the ring, Taz suplexed Johnny Grunge off the top and through a table, both men crashing through the hardware simultaneously to put the scores at one each.

Shortly after, Rocco Rock sent Sabu through the wood, but apparently the referee didn’t see it and was somehow completely oblivious to the sound of a human body crashing through furniture behind him.

Moments later, Sabu picked up the win for his team by putting Rock through the table on the outside.

This wasn’t the greatest match in the world, but it was short enough to ensure that ECW’s hardcore/brawling style didn’t come across as overly excessive or gratuitous.
Your Winners and NEW ECW Tag Team Champions: Taz & Sabu

The brawl continued, with Sabu and 911 setting up two tables, one on the mat, one across the top rope.

It was from this second table that Sabu was supposed to jump right onto Flyboy Rocco Rock. Before he could do that, however, Chris Benoit came down and powerbombed him from one table to the next in what was genuinely the most exciting move of the night.

With that, ECW Double Tables 95 came to an end.

After wrapping up 1994 with the most excellent November to Remember 94, Extreme Championship Wrestling seemed to have taken half a step back with their first show of 1995.

Don’t get me wrong, Double Tables had a lot of potential, but outside of that amazing Snow/Benoit match, nothing here stood out as being worthy of repeat viewing.

Sure, the main event was fun and the Douglas/Blanchard title match entertained, but it’s no surprise that this isn’t one of ECW’s better known events.  

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