Mega Powers Running Wild!

The legendary 'Macho man' Randy Savage teams up with 'The Immortal' Hulk Hogan to take on Ted Dibiase and Andre The Giant in the first ever WWF Summerslam!

Shawn Micahels vs. Mankind

The Heartbreak Kid defends the WWF Championship against Mankind in a thrilling main event at WWF In Your House: Mind Games.

The Birth of the nWo

From Hulk Hogan's shocking turn at WCW Bash at the Beach 1996 to the addition of Ted Dibiase, THe Giant Syxx and more, relive the very beginning of the New World Order.

Austin 3:16 Says I Just Kicked Your Ass

It's one of the most famous promos of all time; Stone Cold Steve Austin wins the 1996 King of The Ring and serves notice on all the WWF superstars. Check it out in our complete review

Wrestlemania 12 Review

The boyhood dream comes true as Shawn Michaels battles champion Bret 'The Hitman' Hart in a classic 1-hour iron man match. Plus, Diesel vs. Undertaker and more.

WCW Fall Brawl 1996 Review

Was Sting in cahoots with the New World Order? Would Lex Luger be able to get along with the Four Horsemen as they faced the nWo in War Games? Find out in this review

Showing posts with label Jamie Noble. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Jamie Noble. Show all posts

Wednesday, 2 February 2022

PPV REVIEW: WWE Rebellion 2002

WWE Rebellion 2002 Review - Event poster
October 26, 2002,
Manchester Arena, Manchester, England

WWE Rebellion 2002 may not be a show anybody talks about today, but it does have the distinction of clocking up a number of firsts and lasts in the history of Vince McMahon's sports entertainment empire.

Since all of the previous incarnations of this event had been held while the company was still known as the World Wrestling Federation, tonight's show was the first Rebellion event to be promoted under the WWE banner.

In fact, it was the only Rebellion to be promoted under this banner as Vince would decide to stop doing UK-exclusive PPVs entirely the following year, making this the last ever Rebellion.

Notably -and here's a bit of obscure trivia for you- it was technically the first Smackdown-exclusive Pay Per View in WWE history as the Blue Brand made their way over to Manchester for one last hoorah.

Of course, the only question is:






Was it any good?

Let's head down to jolly old England and find out together, shall we?

The Rebellion Has Begun

WWE Rebellion 2002 Review - Michael Cole and Tazz called the action
We started tonight's show with a very impressive opening video in which a little girl gave a monologue over shots of the Smackdown superstars.

When the heels were shown on screen, the girl talked about how sad she was that evil forces had taken control and took pleasure in the pain and suffering of others. 

Switching over to shots of the babyfaces, she spoke of her hope that things would get better now that the rebellion had begun. 

This was very well done, especially for a UK PPV. 

From there, Michael Cole and Tazz welcomed us to the show as pyro exploded, the cameras panned the crowd, and WWE Rebellion 2002 got underway. 

Steph Starts the Show

WWE Rebellion 2002 Review - Stephanie McMahon made an announcement at the start of the show
Much as she'd done back at WWE Global Warning, Stephanie McMahon kicked off another international event by hitting the ring and taking to the microphone. 

This time, the Smackdown General Manager informed us that The Undertaker would not be here, partly becasue he'd been beaten up by Big Show and Brock Lesnar, but mostly because his new child was due to be born any day. 

She went onto inform us that Edge would be taking The Dead Man's place in a scheduled 2 vs. 1 handicap match against Paul Heyman and Brock Lesnar for the WWE title, before wrapping up by announcing that, as part of a "special trade agreement" with Raw GM Eric Bischoff, Smackdown had secured the services of Booker T for one night only. 

On that note, the Booker Man himself made his way to ringside and it was on to our opening match.

Booker T vs. Matt Hardy V1

WWE Rebellion 2002 Review - Matt Hardy loves English muffins
Here, we had the PPV debut of Matt Hardy's V1 character, complete with "Matt Facts" and that awesome Monster Magnet theme song.

Tonight, he went up against Booker T in a fun opening contest. 

This wasn't an all-out wrestling classic, but it wasn't designed to be.

It was designed to entertain the fans by pitting a despised heel against a beloved babyface and having them appeal to the crowd. 

From a pure wrestling stand-point, it was average at best, but entertainment value, it was very good indeed.

To the surprise of no one (especially given that the faces usually always went over on these UK PPVs), Booker T picked up the win.
Your Winner: Booker T

Post match, The Five Time, Five Time, Five Time WCW champion continued to entertain the fans with a spinarooni.

Paul Heyman is Furious

WWE Rebellion 2002 Review - Paul Heyman confronts Stephanie McMahon about his role in the show's main event
Out in the backstage area, an upset Paul Heyman burst into Stephanie McMahon's office and did his damndest to get out of the handicap match later on in the show. 

Heyman first appealed to McMahon by noting how unfair it was that Edge could become champion by pinning him, rather than Lesnar.

When that didn't work, the former ECW owner insisted that he couldn't wrestle anyway because he hadn't brought his "trunks," as if he ever owned a pair of wrestling trunks in his life. 

That didn't work either, with Steph simply demanding that Lesnar's manager go and get ready for the match.

This was followed by a look back at the rivalry between Dawn Marie and Torrie Wilson, and was pretty much the same video we'd just seen back at No Mercy 2002 the week before.

Mixed Tag Team Match
Dawn Marie & John Cena vs. Torrie Wilson & Billy Kidman

WWE Rebellion 2002 Review - Kidman & Torrie Wilson vs. John Cena & Dawn Marie
John Cena
had recently turned heel on Kidman after the two had lost in the recent tag team titel tournament, making both men the perfect partners for Wilson and Marie.

Much like the last match, this was more about entertainment than actual wrestling, but it certainly wasn't bad. 

OK, so they once again did the lame spot where the girls cat fight and wind up rolling around on top of one of the guys, only this time it was Billy Kidman who got to be the "lucky" recipient rather than the referee as it usually was. 

I'd complain that this is the third event I've watched in about two weeks that I've seen this spot, and that Wilson and Marie did the exact same thing back at No Mercy, but hey, it always got a pop and Kidman's reaction afterward was pretty funny.

After that, we got a little more action before the girls toppled to the outside and Kidman smacked Cena with a wicked kick, causing the future world champion to face plant the mat in such a glorious fashion that it almost put the famous "Flair Flop" to shame. 

Billy followed this up with a shooting star press and, one three count later, won the match.
Your Winners: Billy Kidman & Torrie Wilson

Afterwards, Torrie celebrated by giving Kidman a good snog. Once again, the former cruiserweight champion's reaction was gold.

Edge Swears Victory

Out in the back, Edge cut an intense promo in which he vowed to become the WWE champion in front of the "Manchester chapter of the Edge Army."

This was good stuff from Edge, but he wasn't yet at a point in his career where I imagine many saw him as a legitimate threat to Lesnar. 

Funaki vs. Crash Holly

Holy crap, an actual Funaki match. 

WWE Rebellion 2002 Review - Funaki vs. Crash Holly
Funaki hadn't beeen seen on PPV since participating in a Battle Royal at Survivor Series 2001, and it had been so long since he'd participated in a non-battle royal PPV match that I can't even figure out when that would have been. 

Smackdown's Number One Announcer was popular with the UK crowd, but not popular enough to get them invested in this match.

In fact, despite the fact that it was competently performed, this one played out to almost total silence.

Not even Crash Holly sporting a Japanese headband and busting out Karate Kid moves was enough to elicit a response, proving that racial stereotyping wasn't always as funny as the wrestling business used to pretend it was.

In fact, the match was so uninteresting that Tazz started entertaining himself with a Gordon Sollie impression.

The match ended with a roll-up for Funaki.
Your Winner: Funaki 

Out in the back, Jamie Noble and Nidia agreed that people in the UK were smelly trash while across the way, Rey Mysterio psyched up himself up to face Noble and Tajiri in this next match.

Triple Threat Elimination Match for the WWE Cruiserweight Championship
WWE Cruiserwieight Champion Jamie Noble (w/ Nidia) vs. Tajiri vs. Rey Mysterio 

WWE Rebellion 2002 Review - Jamie Noble defends his Cruiserweight title
This was just about as good a cruiserweight match as you might expect it to be, showcasing the kind of fast-paced, back-and-forth action that you just weren't going to see anywhere else on the card.

Somewhat predictably, Tajiri got taken out of this elimination rules match early on, clearing the way for champion Jamie Noble to have an exciting one-on-one encounter with Mysterio.

At multiple points, the challenger looked to have the match won, only Nidia to get in the way and stop things. Eventually, Noble drilled Mysterio down in to the mat and got the win thanks to his girflriend's assistance.
Your Winner and Still Cruiserweight Champion: Jamie Noble 

Post match, Mysterio delivered a 619 to both Noble and Nidia. 

Who's The Captain?

Out in the back, Kurt Angle tried to explain to Chris Benoit that because he was American, he was therefore better than his Canadian tag team partner and therefore the captain of their team. Benoit countered by reminding the Olympic Gold Medalist that since he'd beaten him on Smackdown, that technically made him the captain. 

The two were clearly at loggerheads, but somehow they'd have to settle their differences in order to defend their titles on tonight's show. 

Chuck Palumbo & The Big Valbowski vs. D'Von & Ron Simmons

WWE Rebellion 2002 Review - Ron Simmons puts a hurting on Chuck Palumbo
After the whole wedding-that-wasn't debacle between Billy & Chuck, Billy Gunn had been injured, leaving Chuck Palumbo wandering around with nothing to do, hence a random tag team with The Big Valbowski

Across the ring, D'von had dropped the whole Reverand thing while Ron Simmons had ditched his Farooq moniker.

The match between the two teams was fine for what it was, but the crowd were practically silent for it and I can't really blame them. It was a by-the-numbers, go-through-the-motions affair which ended with a win for Ron and D'Von when the latter rolled up Valbowski.
Your Winners: D'Von & Ron Simmons

Prior to the next match, Eddie Guerrero & Chavo Guerrero cut a backstage promo in which they played up to some Mexican stereotypes and then tried to get heat by ragging on British staples like tea and crumpets.

Their match was later, but first, we had this. 

Kiss My Arse Match
Albert vs. Rikishi

WWE Rebellion 2002 - Rikishi faced Albert in a "Kiss My Arse" match
Yes, it's a Kiss My Ass match, but we're in England, so it's Kiss My Arse instead.

Prior to the bell, Albert took to the microphone to talk about how sexy he was and promised to make Rikishi kiss his "Big Hairy Ass."

Unfortunately for the big fella, he didn't get to keep his promise. 

After a decent but rather unexciting match, 'Kishi predictably toppled his "sexy" opponent and picked up the victory.
Your Winner: Rikishi 

Post-match, Albert tried to leave but Rikishi called him back to the ring. Instead of willingly puckering up, the former Hip Hop Hippo attacked and went to ram his hairy butt into his foe's face, only for Big Kish to hit him with a low-blow and an equally as predictable stink face.

From there, the one-time Headshrinker called Michael Cole, Tazz, and Tony Chimmel into the ring for a spot of some of the most awkward dancing you've ever seen in your life. 

This was followed by a look back at the rivalry between The Guerreros and the team of Kurt Angle and Chris Benoit, leading into their upcoming title match.

WWE Tag Team Championship
WWE Tag Team Champions Kurt Angle & Chris Benoit vs. Los Guerreros (Eddie & Chavo Guerrero Jr)

WWE Rebellion 2002 - Eddie Guerrero Tries to Break Kurt Angle's back
It's fair to say that, alongside Bret Hart vs. The Undertaker from One Night Only 1997, this was one of the best matches ever showcased on a UK PPV. 

Whereas many wrestlers tended to phone it in at these kind of shows, Eddie, Chavo, Benoit, and Angle all busted their behinds to deliver an excellent performance that was captivating from start to finish. 

At various points, it looked as though Los Guerreros would genuinly be taking the titles home with them but, of course, that never happened. 

After a thrilling contest, Kurt drilled Eddie with the Angle Slam and that was that.
Your Winners and Still Tag Team Champions: Kurt Angle & Chris Benoit

Post-match, Angle and Benoit continued their "partners who hate each other" thing by almost coming to blows before finally united to see off Eddie & Chavo, who had tried to steal the tag titles.

Brock is Mad

Backstage, Brock Lesnar scolded his manager Paul Heyman for not getting tonight's main event cancelled, and insisted that if Edge should beat the former ECW manager, he (Lesnar) would have no problem busting him in half. 

Handicap Match for the WWE Championship
WWE Champion Brock Lesnar & Paul Heyman vs. Edge

WWE Rebellion 2002 - Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman
This was another thrilling match in which Edge looked like he could genuinly beat The Next Big Thing and become our new champion.

Of course, despite it being a handicap match, Paul Heyman didn't get involved any more than he would have done in his capacity as a manager, though he did recieve a wicked spear courtesy of the future Rated-R Superstar. 

After a tremendously exciting match in which the challenger gave his opponent everything he could possibly throw at him, Brock hit an F5 to retain.
Your Winner and Still WWE Champion: Brock Lesnar

Post-match, Paul Heyman yelled at Edge for spearing him and looked to hit him with a chair, only for Edge to kick the chair right into Heyman's face and give him a Downward Spiral to end the show. 








The last ever WWE Rebellion Show was a largely positive show. 

While matches like Albert/Rikishi, Funaki/Crash, and Dvon/Simmons vs. Palumbo/Valbowski didn't really deliver, everything else did to varying degrees. 

The opening Hardy/Booker match was a fun sports entertainment contest, the Cruiserweight title match was great, and the last two matches were as exciting as you could possibly ask for. 

Despite nothing major happening in terms of development, this was still a very watchable show that saw the Rebellion brand go out on a high note. 




Other 2002 pro wrestling reviews: 

Thursday, 20 January 2022

PPV REVIEW: WWE No Mercy 2002

WWE No Mercy 2002 Review - Event poster
October 20, 2002, 
Alltel Arena, North Little Rock, Arkansas

WWE No Mercy 2002 came to us in the midst of storyline that has since gone down in history as one of the worst of all time:


As if anybody needs reminding, this was a time when Triple H decided that he didn't like Kane being happy, so accused him of murdering a girl called Katie Vick as a result of drunk driving. 

Not content with that, The Game proceeded to shag a mannequin that was supposed to be Katie, a moment few wrestling fans who saw it have ever forgotten.

The dumbest part of all this was that it was entirely unnecessary.

The Cerebral Assasin and The Big Red Machine were set to meet tonight at No Mercy in a match that would unify the World Heavyweight Championship, a story that itself was steeped in enough significance that it could have surely been enough to give the two men a compelling reason to meet.

Regardless, this is where we found ourselves tonight as No Mercy came live from North Little Rock, Arkansas.




Winner Take All

WWE No Mercy 2002 Review - Kane and The Undertaker
No Mercy 2002 began with a cold open featuring The Undertaker sitting in the locker room looking at his injured hand.

At that point, his brother Kane walked in, took a seat, and asked “so, how’s your week been?”

It was a pretty funny moment despite the fact that the two had been in some pretty intense storylines.

The obligatory opening video then showed us that Kane had been at war with Triple H during the infamous Katie Vick debacle.

The two would face off tonight in a winner-take-all match with Kane’s Intercontinental title and The Game’s World Heavyweight Championship both on the line.

Meanwhile, ‘Taker was still engaged in a bitter rivalry with WWE Champion Brock Lesnar after the two failed to settle things last month at Unforgiven 2002.

Tonight, they’d look to end things once and for all in a Hell in a Cell.

With that, we got crowd shots and pyro (but nothing from The World which was new) as Jim Ross and Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler welcomed us to the show.

From there, it was down to ringside for our opening contest.

WWE World Tag Team Championship
WWE Tag Team Champions Chris Jericho & Christian vs. Booker T & Goldust

WWE No Mercy 2002 Review - Booker T teamed with Goldust to face Christian & Chris Jericho
So, does Christian have the distinction of being the only man to have separate tag team title reigns with both members of The Thrillseekers?

I think so. I also haven’t been watching the ‘tween-PPV tv shows as of late so I’ve no idea how Christian’s alliance with Lance Storm came to an end, but here we are.

Regardless of how they got together, Christian and Chris Jericho entered into a spirited performance with Booker T & Goldust, the result of which was a very fun opening match.

The champs cut Goldust off for the first part of the match before Booker T got involved to the delight of the live crowd.

We then got several moments of wild action before Jericho attempted a springboard dropkick on Booker only for the middle rope to completely snap, causing Y2J to collapse in a heap.

The former Undisputed Champion recovered well, hurling Book out of the ring then polishing off Goldust with a DDT onto the title belt and a top rope moonsault that was even more impressive given that he had no middle rope to help him up to the top.

Even with the scary moment when the rope broke, this was a great opener.
Your Winners and Still Tag Team Champions: Chris Jericho & Christian

WWE No Mercy 2002 Review - Funaki interviews Al Wilson
Backstage, Smackdown’s Number One Announcer, Funaki questioned Al Wilson about his goings-on with Dawn Marie.

Funaki showed Wilson two separate instances in which Marie had given him a peak at her body and asked how those peaks made him feel.

Wilson ummed and ah’d but never answered the question, so Funaki then showed him footage of Torrie Wilson catching her dad in the shower with Dawn.

In slow, broken English the man with the microphone asked:

So, Funaki have one question: Why you wear your clothes in the shower?”

Wilson ignored that and simply gave a very dated Bill Clinton reference by insisting that he did not have sexual relations with that woman.

Way to keep it relevant, Al.

Mr. Wilson may not have been much good here, but Funaki was good, especially when he gave us the punchline to the whole segment, speaking in further slow, broken English as he said:

It seems...that Al...Wilson...does not understand English.”

Brilliant. I laughed so damn hard at that.

Dawn Marie vs. Torrie Wilson

WWE No Mercy 2002 Review - Dawn Marie faced Torrie WIlson

Dawn Marie made her way to the ring as the crew were still fixing the ropes.

The match was never going to be a classic, but it was the best it could be given each woman’s skill level and it certainly didn’t stink.

Dawn Marie spent most of the match mauling Torrie before they went into the same old tired spot that got done in every match involving two hot women:

Both girls get in a cat fight, end up rolling around on top of the referee and the referee likes it too much.

Yawn.

That was lame, but the rest of the match was OK for what it was.

After spending most of the time getting her butt whooped, Wilson pulled off a swinging neck breaker to score the fall.
Your Winner: Torrie Wilson

WWE No Mercy 2002 Review - Coach interviews Rob Van Dam

Backstage, Rob Van Dam gave an entertaining interview to Jonathan Coachman about his rivalry and upcoming match with Ric Flair.

Flair had turned heel on RVD by costing him a title match against HHH back at Unforgiven. The two would lock up later, but for now Mr. PPV claimed that he not time for styling, profiling, limos or jets as he was a chair smashing, frog splashing, ying-yanging man named Rob Van Dam.

That was good stuff from RVD. What wasn’t so good was that Coach then saw Paul Heyman, Brock Lesnar and Undertaker’s ex, Tracy, all heading through the back.

Lesnar and Heyman had nothing to say but Tracy wanted Coach to know that ‘Taker was a scumbag and would get what was coming to him tonight.

Nature Boy Ric Flair vs. Rob Van Dam

WWE No Mercy 2002 Review - Ric Flair battles Rob Van Dam
This was neither man’s greatest ever match, but it was still a solid effort with a lot to enjoy.

Ever the veteran, Flair spent time attacking RVD’s greatest weapon, his two legs, and even locked him in the figure four.

Van Dam made a comeback and one frog splash later picked up a big victory following a decent contest.
Your Winner: Rob Van Dam

Backstage, Big Show was seen venting his frustrations to Stephanie McMahon, much to the chagrin of Raw GM Eric Bischoff.

As Show’s boss, Easy E wanted to know just what was going on, so the giant let him have it, bemoaning the fact that he hadn’t been featured on a PPV since July and hadn’t headlined a show in ages despite the fact that he was 7ft, 500 pounds and a former WWE and WCW champion.

Bischoff berated his employee for daring to take that kind of tone with him, so Big Show grabbed hold of him and threatened to break his neck if things didn’t change.

How Awesome Was the Intercontinental Championship?

Tonight’s winner-take-all match meant that this would be the last time the Intercontinental Championship would be defended as it got absorbed with the world title.

As a final farewell, WWE gave us an awesome video package highlighting the history of the prestigious title and showcasing just about every man to ever hold the title.

It was very good, not least because it gave us a few shots of the much-missed Owen Hart.

Honestly, this made you question why ok earth WWE would get rid of the belt in the first place.

The video made it look like HHH vs. Kane was next, but it wasn’t.

Instead we got this:

WWE Cruiserweight Championship
WWE Cruiserweight Champion Jamie Noble (w/ Nidia) vs. Tajiri

WWE No Mercy 2002 Review - Tajiri gets set to face Jamie Noble
This was as solid a Cruiserweight match as you were going to get from WWE, an exciting back and forth with lots of unique spots and plenty to enjoy.

After a compelling battle, Tajiri looked to have the match won, but Nidia snogged the referee’s face off so that he couldn’t count the fall.

She then prevented the challenger from executing a roll-up, allowing her man to retain the gold.
Your Winner and Still Cruiserweight Champion: Jamie Noble

Post-match, Tajiri kissed Nidia. Irate, Noble then went to show his rival how it was done but got kicked in the back of the head by the Japanese Buzz Saw.”

Chavo Gets His Butt Handed to Him

Out in the back, Chris Benoit warned Eddie Guerrero that Kurt Angle was whooping Chavo Guerrero’s butt.

Concerned, Uncle Eddie raced to the rescue but then stopped short of entering the room where the assault was taking place.

As Chavo screamed for help from behind closed doors, Eddie reached the conclusion that it had all been a rouse and, in a hilarious moment, mistook his nephew’s voice for that of a little girl.

When Chavo was finally sent hurling through the door, Eddie pounced on Angle but was immediately stopped by two officials, which begs the question as to why said officials did nothing to stop Angle destroying Chavo.

Winner Take All
WWE World Heavyweight Champion Triple H vs. Kane

WWE No Mercy 2002 Review - Kane vs. Triple H
On any other night, a title unification match for the World Heavyweight Championship and the Intercontinental Championship would have been a big enough story in its own right.

WWE being what they were (and many would say, still are), they all but ignored the significance of such an event and instead focused on a dumb story involving Kane’s friend Katie Vick dying in a car accident while he was at the wheel and Triple H shagging a mannequin in a coffin while wearing a Kane mask.

As if that wasn’t bad enough, the first half of this match was pretty lifeless.

Things picked up when Ric Flair got involved to start running interference for his protégé. We even got the briefest of cameos from Kane’s tag team partner Hurricane who got immediately pedigreed and spent the rest of the match napping on the outside.

Flair’s shenanigans did liven things up a bit and gave us a finishing sequence that was at least more exciting than the first part of the match, but it was nothing out of the ordinary for a PPV title match.

After an underwhelming match, The Game scored the pinfall thanks to the pedigree.
Your Winner and Still World Heavyweight Champion: Triple H

So long IC title...for now.

Tracy Confesses

Back in Stephanie McMahon’s office, Tracy confessed to the Smackdown GM that she’d made up having an affair with The Undertaker at Paul Heyman’s request and had gone along with it because she wanted “Mark” back.

Unbeknownst to her, Mark had been listening in from behind the door and heard the whole thing. He walked in, called her a lying bitch, and left again.

WWE Tag Team Championship
Rey Mysterio & Edge vs. Kurt Angle & Chris Benoit

WWE No Mercy 2002 Review - Edge & Rey Mysterio vs. Kurt Angle & Chris Jericho
This was just such a tremendous match I’m almost tempted to go back and rewatch it.

Stephanie McMahon had created the WWE Tag Team Championship to give Smackdown its own duos title only to realise that she had no real tag teams on her roster.

Make shift teams like Edge & Rey Mysterio and Kurt Angle & Chris Benoit had been formed and had gone on to duke it out in a tournament to determine the first ever champions.

This was the final, and what a final it was.

Exceptional wrestling, jaw-dropping high spots, Rey Mysterio getting thrown 500ft in the air by Benoit and Angle, this match had it all...

...OK, so 500ft may be an exaggeration, but it’s no exaggeration to say that this was a truly excellent match, one which ended when Angle made Edge tap to the ankle lock.
Your Winners and first ever WWE tag team Champions: Kurt Angle & Chris Benoit

01.58.26 - TAKER

Backstage, Undertaker bullied a medic into giving him a shot. In a rare moment of vulnerability, ‘Taker admitted that without a shot to help him with his injured hand, he wouldn’t survive Hell in a Cell.

WWE Women’s Championship
WWE Women’s Champion Trish Stratus vs. Victoria

As Victoria made her way out for her debut PPV match, Jim Ross described her as being “permanently pre-menstrual,” a comment that was so problematic even Jerry Lawler of all people called him out on it.

Questionable commentary aside, this was a decent match, not great by any stretch, but competently performed and inoffensive.

After a few minutes of getting battered by the challenger, Trish Stratus picked up the three count to retain her title.
Your Winner and Still Women’s Champion: Trish Stratus

Before the main event, we went over to The World, where Rikishi told us about that time Undertaker pushed him off the top of the cell at Armageddon 2000 in a spot that was nowhere near as impressive as WWE made it out to be.

We then got one final video package for Taker vs. Brock and then it was on with the match.

Hell in a Cell Match for the WWE Championship
WWE Champion Brock Lesnar (w/ Paul Heyman) vs. The Undertaker

WWE No Mercy 2002 Review - Undertaker vs. Brock Lesnar
This incredible match was proof positive that sometimes less really is so much more and that Hell in a Cell match didn’t need insane, Foleyesque stunts to be effective.

In fact, neither ‘Taker nor Brock ever left the cell, instead choosing to destroy each other -and I mean utterly *destroy* each other- inside the structure.

Lesnar immediately went after his opponent's injured hand but the challenger fought back and battered Brock to a bloody pulp outside the ring.

‘Taker was even able to get his hands on Paul Heyman and attack him to the point that Lesnar’s manager bled beautifully.

The sight and sound of Heyman, his face dripping with blood, screaming desperately from outside the cage, begging ‘Taker to show mercy and then begging Brock to fight back, really added something special to what was already an amazing match.

The tides turned once again and Brock took charge, ensuring his rival also donned the proverbial crimson mask...except it wasn’t so much a mask for Undertaker. He bled so much that it was more like a crimson all-over body suit.

Anyway, things went back and forth in an awesome display of brutality until finally, the champion countered a Tombstone with an F5 to retain the gold.
Your Winner and Still WWE Champion: Brock Lesnar

As the show went off the air, Lesnar grabbed his title and stood atop the cage as a battered, bloody, and defeated Dead Man looked on in despair.

Honestly, that was one of the most compelling matches I’ve ever seen in all my years as a wrestling fan and one I’m definitely adding to my favourites.






If you fast forward through the World Heavyweight Championship match and don’t set your expectations too high for the women’s matches, No Mercy 2002 proved to be a very enjoyable show from start to finish.

The opening tag match, Cruiserweight Championship and, to a lesser extent, RVD/Flair all delivered, and while the Smackdown tag title match was so good that it seemed certain to steal the show, it was topped by a brutal, bloody, and utterly enthralling main event that has to be considered one of the best Hell in a Cell matches of all time.


Wednesday, 5 January 2022

PPV REVIEW: WWE Vengeance 2002

WWE Vengeance 2002 Review - Event poster
July 21, 2002
Joe Louis Arena in Detroit, Michigan

Vengeance 2002 came hot on the heels of a marked shift in the direction of World Wrestling Entertainment.

Since February, the New World Order had tried -and largely failed- to recapture the magic they once had in WCW, only for Scott Hall's firing, the random inclusion of Booker T, and multiple injuries to Kevin Nash all scuppering plans.

In fact, Nash injured himself in March, taken a few months off to recover, and then immedietly reinjured himself in his first match back on Raw, ultimately putting him on the shelf until the spring of 2003.

By this point, Vince McMahon had seen enough.

The following week, he came out to inform fans that he had officially disbanded the nWo once and for all. 

Still, those pining for the glory days of World Championship Wrestling didn't have to miss out altogether as Vince introduced another icon of the Monday Night Wars - none other than his former rival Eric Bischoff- as the new Raw General Manager.

With Easy E in charge of Raw and Vince's daughter Stephanie McMahon heading up Smackdown, the stage was set for Vengeance.






Here's what went down:  

I Will Strike Down Upon Thee With Great Vengeance

WWE Vengeance 2002 Review - Michael Cole and Tazz called the show
Vengeance 2002 kicked off with one the WWF’s usual compelling opening videos.

This one had a biblical theme, with the participants in tonight’s main event -Undertaker, Rock, and Kurt Angle- reciting Ezekiel 25:17 as clips played off them looking awesome in the ring. 

Yes, I know this is more familiar to people from Pulp Fiction and that most people talk about this video being a nod to that movie, but since the Good Book precedes Quentin Tarantino’s masterpiece by a few thousand years, I think its fair to say that this is the proper source of the reference.

Anyway, It was good stuff that eventually led us to the obligatory opening pyro, crowd shots, and a check-in with The World in New York.

Michael Cole and Tazz then welcomed us to the show, informing us that they’d cover the first half of the event with Jim Ross and Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler taking the second half.

With that, it was onto the ring for our first match of the evening.

Tag Team Table Match
Bubba Ray & Spike Dudley vs. Eddie Guerrero & Chris Benoit

WWE Vengeance 2002 Review - Eddie Guerrero
This may not have been the best tag team tables match of all time, but it was still an entertaining opener with a surprising finish.

Last seen on PPV at King of the Ring 2001, Chris Benoit had subsequently spent 13 months on the shelf with a broken neck.

The Crippler had recently returned and aligned himself with former Radicalz team mate Eddie Guerrero.

One thing this fan really liked about the duo during this time was that whenever they teamed together they always wore their respective ring gear in matching colours. It was a small touch, but one that definitely helped to present them as a cohesive unit.

Here, the duo spent the first half of the match destroying Bubba Ray Dudley. It was decent, but obviously, it was only when the tables came into play that the match really took off.

At one point, Bubba lay Benoit on a table and lept off the ropes. Benoit moved and Dudley crashed through the table but was allowed to continue since it wasn’t an offensive move.

Later, Spike Dudley put Eddie through a table with a Dudley Drop to the outside in what looked to be a nasty spot.

Benoit then hurled Spike over the ropes on the other side of the ring and eliminated him, but then Bubba planted Benoit through a third table and that was that.
Your Winners: The Dudley Boyz

Backstage, Raw General Manager Eric Bischoff gave an interview to Jonathan Coachman before getting distracted by the arrival of Triple H.

Both Bischoff and The Game’s estranged wife Stephanie McMahon (now Smackdown GM) had been trying to secure his services for their respective brands, and Bischoff was none too happy that Hunter was on his way to negotiate with Steph.

WWE Cruiserweight Championship
WWE Cruiserweight Champion Jamie Noble (w/ Nidia) vs. Kidman

WWE Vengeance 2002 Review - Jamie Noble and Nidia
To paraphrase what I said about the last match, this wasn’t the greatest Cruiserweight match in the world but it was still good for what it was.

Jamie Noble and Billy Kidman were both talented performers and gave us a fine match, but it just wasn’t the absolute all-out stormer it could have been.

Noble retained his title after a good effort.
Your Winner and Still Cruiserweight Champion: Jamie Noble

Backstage, Kurt Angle’s interview with Marc Lloyd was interrupted by the arrival of Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman.

Heyman reminded Angle that Lesnar had a guaranteed title shot at Summerslam as a result of winning the 2002 King of the Ring and would face the winner of Angle’s match with The Rock and The Undertaker.

Unperturbed, Angle promised Lesnar that when the two did meet, The Next Big Thing would be taken down by the Olympic Gold Medalist.

This was good stuff.

WWE European Championship
WWE European Champion Jeff Hardy vs. William Regal

WWE Vengeance 2002 Review - Hulk Hogan and Ric Flair congratulate Hulk Hogan
Possibly the best match on the card so far, this saw both champ and challenger go back and forth in an entertaining, technically sound match that this fan enjoyed a lot.

After a very good, albeit short, battle, The Charasmatic Enigma retained his gold.
Your Winner and Still European Champion: Jeff Hardy

Post match, Hardy was congratulated backstage by both Ric Flair and Hulk Hogan.

Once Jeff left, Hogan told Flair that he was considering going to the top rope and doing a swanton bomb of his own in his match tonight. This prompted Flair to mock Hogan, saying he’d be too slow climbing up to the top and would make a mess of the move.

It was a very funny moment, but the two legends found nothing funny about Bischoff and Stephanie McMahon running the company and questioned whether Bischoff in particular would run WWE out of business.

Chris Jericho vs. John Cena

WWE Vengeance 2002 Review - John Cena smiles after beating Chris Jericho in his debut PPV match
And so it begins.

Yes, ladies and gents, this was the Pay Per View debut of the one and only John Cena.

The future legend had arrived on the scene a few weeks earlier and promptly set about trying to embarrass Kurt Angle before entering into a feud with Chris Jericho.

Tonight, the two went tooth-and-nail in a match which was much better than the unenthusiastic crowd would have you believe.

Moving at a good pace, Cena and Jericho worked hard to deliver an entertaining performance before the rookie scored the upset in his first major win.
Your Winner: John Cena

Out in the back, Eric Bischoff accosted Stephanie McMahon’s lawyer whom she had summoned to deliver some important documents. Fearing that he was about to lose HHH, Bisch’ was livid.

Say what you will about Eric Bischoff, he was always a very entertaining personality in front of the camera.

RVD and Brock are Ready for War

As we moved into the second half of the show, Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler made their way out to take over from Cole and Tazz.

Their first task was to show us clips of Brock Lesnar and Rob Van Dam preparing for their upcoming Intercontinental Championship clash.

This was followed by an ace video highlighting their rivalry which was soundtracked by the kind of dramatic music you’d normally here in the Smackdown video games for the PS2 around this time.

WWE Intercontinental Championship
WWE Intercontinental Champion Rob Van Dam vs. Brock Lesnar (w/ Paul Heyman)

WWE Vengeance 2002 Review - Brock Lesnar puts a hurting on Rob Van Dam
This card continued to get better as it went on.

RVD vs. Lesnar was a fine match that ignited the crowd for the first time on the show.

The champion continually countered the challenger’s brute power with quickness and innovative offence and even looked to have the match won.

After a very fine match indeed, RVD hit the Five Star Frog Splash and made the cover, only for Paul Heyman to yank referee Charles Robinson out of the ring and cause the DQ.

The ending was pretty predictable given that Lesnar couldn’t really lose and yet didn’t need the IC belt either, but before that, this was a lot of fun.
Your Winner by DQ: Rob Van Dam

Post match, we got even more fun as Charles Robinson began to rain down on Heyman with the weakest looking punches in wrestling history, only for Lesnar to pick him up and toss him aside like a rag doll.

RVD then came careening off the top rope and took out The Next Big Thing, only for Lesnar to recover and destroy the champion with an F5 onto a steel chair.

He Signed

WWE Vengeance 2002 Review - Stephanie McMahon confronts Eric Bischoff
Backstage, a forlorn Stephanie McMahon emerged from her office looking dejected.

Naturally, Bischoff jumped to conclusions and began gloating about her inability to sign Triple H.

“He signed,” said Steph, wiping the smirk off the Raw GM’s face before walking away.

Moments later, The Game himself emerged and was railroaded by Bischoff for making the wrong choice.

That’s when Hunter set him straight, informing the former WCW head that the papers he signed were actually his divorce papers and that he still hadn’t decided which brand to work for.

This pleased Easy E no end.

No Disqualification Match
The Big Show vs. Booker T

Booker T and Big Show had been feuding ever since ‘T had been kicked out of the now-defunct New World Order.

Their No DQ match tonight was never going to be the best thing on the card but it was surprisingly more enjoyable than anyone could have expected.

This, of course, was largely due to the sweet spot where Booker ran off the US announce table and scissor kicked Big Show through the Spanish announce table.

This short match didn’t last long after that, but it was fun while it lasted.
Your Winner: Booker T

Meanwhile, over at The World, Torrie Wilson and Dawn Marie argued about who had the best butt.

Time to Play The Game

WWE Vengeance 2002 Review - Shawn Michaels, Triple H, Stephanie McMahon, and Eric Bischoff
Up next, Triple H came to the ring to reveal whether he’d sign for Raw or Smackdown, prompting both Eric Bischoff and Stephanie McMahon to hit the ring for one last sales pitch.

Just when it looked like The Game was about to side with Steph, none other than Shawn Michaels hit the ring.

HBK reminded us that while Hunter had been out with a minor injury, it was he, Shawn, who had been promising to head to Vengeance and bring his buddy “home” to the nWo before “Big Kev” had gotten hurt and Vince had dissolved that faction.

With the fans all chanting for DX, Michaels reminded HHH how much fun they used to have together, and that seems to do the trick, promoting Hunter to announce he was signing with Raw so that he and HBK could make Bischoff’s life a living hell.

Reacting to Triple H

Backstage, Rikishi expressed his disappointment about Triple H joining Raw, telling Marc Lloyd that it was a big loss to the young guys on Smackdown who looked to The Game as a leader.

Across the way, Terri interrupted Booker T and Goldust to get their thoughts.

Hilariously, Goldust sheepishly covered his crotch when Terri walked in the room. He then stood by while an enlivened Booker ranted about the time Shawn Michaels super kicked him out of the nWo.

That’s right Booker,” said Goldust. “He may be The Game, but we’re the ones with the bigger joysticks.

Imma ignore that,” quipped Booker as Goldie left the room.

This was, as you might expect, a very entertaining segment.

Prior to the next match, we got a brief look back at the rivalry between Edge & Hulk Hogan and Christian & Lance Storm.

WWE Tag Team Championship
WWE Tag team Champions Edge & Hulk Hogan vs. Lance Storm & Christian

WWE Vengeance 2002 Review - Hollywood Hulk Hogan & Edge vs. Christian and Lance Storm
Hogan spent the first half of the match doing the work for his team, giving us a very old-school style match until getting beat down and eventually making the hot tag to Edge.

It was at that point that the match really kicked up a notch and started to get exciting.

A ref bump allowed to Test to run in for his Canadian team mates, but that wasn’t enough to give Lance Storm and Christian the win, so Jericho had to get involved, interfering to help his fellow countrymen capture the tag team titles.

It wasn’t the best match on the card, but it was a perfectly serviceable tag bout that served a purpose.
Your Winners and NEW Tag Team Champions: Lance Storm & Christian

Out in the back, Eric Bischoff tried to recruit Kurt Angle to Raw, but the Olympic Gold Medalist was far too focused on his match to think about that right now.

Elsewhere, Marc Lloyd asked Stephanie McMahon about Bischoff’s heavy-handed recruitment tactics.

Steph wasn’t concerned about Bischoff, telling Lloyd that she was in direct contact with every Raw superstar and would “rip the heart” out of the red brand.

What does that mean?” Asked Lawler. “Are you going to Smackdown, JR?”

Nope, I’m a Raw guy. Besides, I’m not the heart of Raw,” replied Ross. “I may be the butt.

Bless JR, that was funny.

WWE Undisputed Championship
WWE Undisputed Champion The Undertaker vs. The Rock vs. Kurt Angle

WWE Vengeance 2002 Review - Kurt Angle goads The Undertaker and The Rock
Time and time again, this triple-threat match has been referred to as a classic and considered one of the best triple threat matches of all time.

While I can neither confirm nor deny that it is, I can certainly say that it was a damn good match which, though it started slow, got infinitely better as it progressed.

Though the WWE's tried-and-trusted formula of one guy napping on the outside while the other work and then switch certainly came into effect here, it was a formula that was used sparringly and effectively.

For the most part, all three world-class performers worked their asses off to deliver.

There were peaks, there were valleys, there was drama and suspense and everything you'd want from a compelling match. 

There was even a five-minute Finisher Fest at the end too, and though I suppose that could be cause for criticism, it, like everything else in this match, worked.

After a gripping 20 minute epic, The Rock drove Kurt Angle into the mat and pinned him to become the new undisputed champion.
Your Winner and NEW Undisputed Champion: The Rock 

As JR yelled about how The Rock was the first-ever seven time champion, The Great One posed for the fans and this writer questioned whether having him pin Angle rather than The Undertaker was such a smart move.

Ultimately, I think it was. 

Sure, pinning the actual champion rather than the third-man would have added a little more kudos and credibility to The Rock's win, but was The F'N Rock for crying out loud. At this point in the game, he simply didn't need any more kudos or credibility to be considered a worthy champion.

Plus, by the sheer fact alone that he had never been pinned for the gold, The Dead Man would have a legitimate reason to jump right back into the title picture post-Summerslam.





And so Vengeance 2002 was over and had proved to be a decent but hardly spectacular show.

The main event was off-the-page excellent, but the rest of the card was full of those "good but not great" matches which, while they may have been entertaining, didn't really go all out to impress.

Still, this was a watchable show with nothing noticeably terrible going on, so if you're looking for a dose of Ruthless Aggression-era nostalgia capped off with a smoking hot main event, this may be worth your time. 


Thursday, 16 September 2021

EVENT REVIEW: WWE Global Warning 2002

WWE Global Warning 2002: Melbourne
August 10, 2002
Colonial Stadium, Melbourne, Australia

Look up the WWE Global Warning event on the WWE Network and it will tell you that the date of the event was November 5th, 2002. 

It wasn't. 

The actual event took place in August, in between Vengeance 2002 and that year's Summerslam.

The first WWE event in Australia since 1986 was promoted as a Smackdown branded show despite the fact that The Un-Americans, Chris Jericho, and Triple H were all now Raw superstars. 

The show featured three matches that didn't make it to the broadcast, including Mark Henry teaming with a rookie Randy Orton to face Reverand D-Von and Batista, Hardcore Holly and Chavo Guerrero battling Billy and Chuck, and Kurt Angle beating Test

We may not be able to talk about those matches today, but let's talk about the ones we can in this WWE Global Warning review: 






Welcome to Global Warning

WWE Global Warning 2002: Stephanie McMahon opened the show
After the briefest of intros with none of the usual opening video package, pyro exploded, the crowds roared, and Michael Cole and Taz welcomed us to Australia. 

This was followed by the arrival of new Smackdown General Manager, Stephanie McMahon

Steph said nothing of significance, simply welcoming fans to the show before dancing with Rikishi as he made his way to the ring for our opening contest.


Kiss My Ass Match
Rikishi vs. Rico 

You could tell this wasn't an important event because Cole and Tazz spent more time making fun of ring announcer Tony Chimmel, each other, and the size of Rikishi's ass than they did calling the action.

Not that there was much action to call. 

This was all over in pretty much no time. 'Kishi battered his former tag team partner for a few minutes, Rico made the briefest of comebacks but then missed a moonsault and got Samoan Dropped to end the match. 
Your Winner: Rikishi 

Afterwards, Big 'Kish flattened his rival in the corner then gave him the stink face to the delight of the Melbourne faithful. He then proceeded to dance with two kids from the audience, all while Taz and Cole cracked jokes.

Jamie and Nidia go Surfing

Prior to the next match, we saw a video package of Cruiserweight Champion Jamie Noble and his girlfriend Nidia learning to surf and seeing the sights of Australia. 

It looked like they had a good time, and in its own way, the video was almost cute, but it wasn't very interesting and added nothing of value. Still, at least it saved WWE the hassle of actually adding more wrestling matches to this thing.

WWE Cruiserweight Championship
WWE Cruiserweight Champion Jamie Noble (w/ Nidia) vs. The Hurricane

WWE Global Warning 2002: Hurricane vs. Jamie Noble
Although it felt like it moved at a somewhat slower pace than most cruiserweight matches, this was a lot of fun. Noble and The Hurricane combined some of the usual highflying stuff with actual strategy and more of an emphasis on entertaining the crowd.

It was plenty enjoyable, especially when Hurricane took out the champion with a huge swinging neckbreaker off the top rope. Alas, that wasn't enough to win match.

After a solid effort, Noble retained thanks to Nidia's interference and a rope-assisted pin.

All the while, Cole and Taz continued to goof off, this time turning their insults to referee Jimmy Korderas and Raw announcers JR & King.
Your Winner and Still Cruiserweight Champion: Jamie Noble

Post-match, Hurricane destroyed his rival with a chokeslam and smacked Nidia on the ass.

A Day at the Zoo


Before the next match, we got a look at the day Christian, Lance Storm, and Kurt Angle all went to the zoo in Australia. 

Kurt Angle getting offended by the Australian word "buggar" was hilarious, and the video including a shot where Angle clearly called Christian "Jay" was interesting. Everything else was mildly entertaining filler. 

WWE Tag Team Championship
WWE Tag Team Champions The Un-Americans (Lance Storm & Christian) vs. Rey Mysterio & Billy Kidman

WWE Global Warning 2002: Rey Mysterio & Billy Kidman vs. Lance Storm & Christian
And so, we had former WCW tag team champions Billy Kidman & Rey Mysterio taking on current WWE tag team champions Lance Storm and Christian. 

Mysterio had only just arrived in WCW and looked eager to prove himself, flying around the ring with gusto in what was mostly an exciting match.

I say "mostly" because there was a lull in the middle of this one, but for the most part, it was a fun encounter which almost -but not quite- delivered all the excitement you'd expect from these four talented performers.

Given that this show was kind of "non-cannon" in the same way that UK PPVs were, it came as no surprise when the tag champs retained their gold.
Your Winners and Still WWE Tag Team Champions: Lance Storm & Christian 

Edge was in action next. 

That meant that, following the pattern of the rerst of the show, we were obligated to watch him go sightseeing with Billy Kidman and Torrie Wilson. The trio went to a market where Kidman thought that a digeridoo was a walking stick, then sat down to eat dessert.

Alright then.

Chris Jericho vs. Edge 

WWE Global Warning 2002: Edge vs. Chris Jericho
Prior to the match, Chris Jericho took to the microphone to address the crowd but found himself met with a huge chorus of "You're a wanker! You're a wanker!

Of course, Cole, Taz, and Jericho all had no idea -or at least pretended to have no idea- what the word meant. As such, your British writer got a good laugh out of the announcers repeatedly using the word over and over again, and Jericho busting out "you think I'm a wanker? Well I don't even know what a wanker is, and I think Australia sucks!"

The best line, however, went to Taz. Jericho missed a move, causing the announcer to proclaim "he landed right on his wanker!

Given that this word would never make it on air if this show had been broadcast here in the UK, I found this pretty funny, but it wasn't the only thing this match had going for it.

Wanker or not, Jericho put in a solid effort against Edge here as the two gave us the best match they were capable of delivering in ten minutes. 

After a good back and forth and some dramatic nearfalls, Edge went over by reversing the Walls of Jericho into a roll-up.

The best match on the card so far.
Your Winner: Edge 

Post match, Jericho once again channeled his WCW heel turn and threw a temper tantrum before Edge climbed up a big lighting tower to celebrate. 

Fan Frenzy 

Up next, we got a look back at the WWE Fan Frenzy event. This was essentially the Axcess events, Australia style. The event looked like a lot of fun and featured Edge, Test, Stacy Keibler and Brock Lesnar, as well as a bunch of fans spouting catchphrases from their favorite performers. Good times.

Bra & Panties Match
Stacy Keibler vs. Torrie Wilson

Special Guest Ring Announcer: The Big Val Bowski

WWE Global Warning 2002: The Big Valbowski
Before the girls could lock up, The Big Valbowski came down to make a bunch of predictable jokes about going down...under. 

Stacy and Torrie then gave us every bra and panties match you've ever seen. 

I'm sure there are some people who really like these kinds of matches, but this fan isn't one of them. Yes, both girls were insatiably beautiful, and yes, they tried hard to do some actual wrestling to the best of their limited abilities, but there's nothing about bra and panties matches that holds any appeal. 

They even did the predictable spot where the two girls start catfighting and end up rolling on top of the referee, though it was so poorly executed that it looked like official Mike Sparks was physically pulling the two on top of him for his own gratification.

The zebra loved it, so Stacy and Torrie pulled his pants down to expose his undies, then a few moments later Torrie stripped Stacy of her shorts to win the match.
Your Winner: Torrie Wilson

Post-match, Torrie gave Stacy a good spanking and sent her on her way.  

Charity Dinner

WWE Global Warning 2002: The Rock at a charity dinner
Prior to tonight's main event, we got a quick look back at the WWE's recent charity dinner/auction. 

The company often did these before the UK PPVs, so it wasn't much of a surprise to see it here to. 

Paintings of The Rock, Triple H, and Hulk Hogan sold for thousands of dollars to raise good money for good causes, The Rock was asked for his porno name, and by the looks of it, a good time was had by all.

With that out of the way, we still have 35 minutes left on this show which either means a really long main event, or some kind of shenanigans.

No Disqualification Match for the WWE Undisputed Championship
WWE Undisputed Champion The Rock vs. Brock Lesnar (w/ Paul Heyman) vs. Triple H

With Triple H and The Rock competing alongside the man who was certainly living up to his moniker of The Next Big Thing, this was never going to be anything less than a good match.

Was it an all-out, PPV-calibre classic? 

WWE Global Warning 2002: The Rock vs. Triple H vs. Brock Lesnar
Of course not, but as the main event for what was essentially a glorified house show, it was certainly good. 

Triple H and The Rock double-teamed Brock Lesnar in the early going but The Game switched allegiances and helped Lesnar take out The Great One.

From there, standard WWE Triple Threat formula kicked in, with the competitors taking it in turns to have a quick nap while their fellow combatants duked it out. 

Lesnar looked impressive, but it wasn't to be his night. After a good effort, The People's Champ put down The Next Big Thing to retain his title, a result which, let's be honest, was never in question.
Your Winner and Still Undisputed Champion: The Rock

The actual match was only around 20 minutes, which still gave us 15 minutes of show time to fill, something The Rock, Triple H, and Paul Heyman did with gusto.

With Cole and Taz having signed off for the evening, Lesnar went to attack Brock with a chair, only for Hunter to stop him and help The Rock dispose of Heyman's charge once and for all. 

At this point, The Game was in the midst of an intense heel turn following his jump to Raw and fall out with best friend Shawn Michaels. Despite that, he was still very much a babyface here as he and the Undisputed Champion confronted Paul Heyman.

The former ECW boss was hilarious here as he first pleaded for his life and then clapped and cheered along as the Melbourne crowd erupted with chants of "Rocky! Rocky!"

Proving he was smart, Heyman was reluctant to shake The Rock's hand for fear that it would lead to him getting Rock Bottomed and People's Elbowed. Eventually, The Brahma Bull convinced Heyman to shake and let go without trouble, but when Paul E. shook The Game's hand, he naturally got a pedigree for his efforts.

The fun and games continued as first HHH convinced The Rock to hit Heyman with a People's Elbow, before Rock himself convinced Hunter to deliver the move he'd been on the receiving end of countless times.

Finally, Rock stood back and allowed his long-time rival a chance to bask in the adulation of the crowd then, once The Game left, the Undisputed Champion took the microphone to thank the fans and utter some catchphrases.

Honestly, that last 15 minutes of post-show shenanigans was more entertaining than anything else on the show.








The after-match stuff may have been the highlight, but that doesn't necessarily mean that WWE Global Warning was a poor show or anything. The main event was as good as you were going to get for a show at this level, while Edge vs. Jericho and the tag team championship match were also enjoyable. 

Sure, this felt like one of the many UK PPVs were nothing of any consequence happened, and sure, there was far too much "here's what the WWE Superstars did in Australia" stuff between the relatively few matches on the card, but if the goal of professional wrestling is simply to entertain, then I think it's fair to say that Global Warning 2002 achieved that goal. 

Retro Pro Wrestling

New reviews of classic WWF/WWE events recalling every moment from Wrestlemania 1 - 30. You'll also find reviews of WCW, ECW, TNA and the occasional indie event, along with a look at old school magazines, merchandise and more.