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Wednesday, December 3, 2014

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Speed on the Beat Reviews: December to Dismember 2006

(Ed. Note: The "amirites" you'll probably see are more parody of say, a Mike Adamle type who doesn't know what to say about something, so he'll throw in useless banter or try to make a catchphrase out of something innocuous)

In addition to being Hump Day, today is the eighth anniversary of what is widely considered the worst PPV in the history of WWE: December to Dismember 2006. Now, I won't bore you with the story of "WWECW," as you should already know that. In a sentence, "WWECW" was a clusterf*** of insanity and effectively neutered the federation. I'll let the good folks over at OSW Review give you a humorous look at the "promotion." However, without the trainwreck that, to many, began with this PPV, we may not have gotten NXT. So, without further ado, let's get into the possible lameness, amirite? Please keep in mind that I'm reviewing the Network edition of the show.

The PPV starts with a promo typing the main event, which was solidly produced (even though the voice over spoiled the show from the effin' jump). From the opening promo, we're treated to...fireworks and Drowning Pool. It's not really off to a great start, amirite? Taz(z) and Joey Styles kick things off, then toss it over to the Spanish Announcing Table. In other words, everything that was ECW has been meshed into what is WWE at the time, effectively giving the original ECW a one-finger salute.

Our first match of the night is Johnny Nitro and Joey Mercury versus The Hardys.

The Hardy Boyz vs MNM by ChrisRedfeild (support the official release...I guess?)

For a PPV that's supposed to be ECW-centric, we get a lot of WWE in it, even more than the OG One Night Stand PPVs. I forgot how over-the-top the MNM intro was (it went on for about three minutes). It's like a Ruthless Aggression version of Miz and Mizdow, except I'd take "AWWWWEEESOME!!! I CAME TO PLAY!" a million times over the inanely repetitive guitar riffs of the MNM theme.

Mercury and Matt Hardy start off. And right away, we're given a stalling stare-off. If this is the match that's supposed to start the crowd off hot, it isn't right now. Lots of headlocks and the like, lots of Taz(z) gawking over Melina. Both teams run into the ring, and we're given even more stalling. Y'know how people say crowds these days are dead? Tell them to watch the crowd in this match. People pop for maybe three seconds about any move/momentum shift. It really seems like the crowd noise is being piped in, but I could be wrong. After some back and forths, near falls, some outside-the-ring schmozzing (including Nitro catapulting over the top rope), and more, this match finally ends after about twenty minutes. How? MNM get knocked out and piled on top of each other, due to a Matt Hardy double top-rope neckbreaker (a pretty cool spot, amirite). Jeff hits a swanton bomb and gets the pin. This match lasts 22:33, which was only two minutes less than the main event. But, even in all that, not too much happened. It was a standard match, with standard Hardy and Nitro (later, of course, John Morrison) tropes.

Next up? Balls Mahoney versus Matt Striker. Let's note, before we get into this, that this is the only match where an ECW original won that was shown. Stevie Richards won in a dark match and Kevin Thorn was part of the New Breed. Now, this match was almost Santino meets Heel Khali levels of sadness, even though Balls actually could go at this point still. It was a comedy match where Balls Mahoney practically squashed Striker and his face-on-his-ass ass.

A face which screams "E-C-Dub! E-C-Dub!," amirite?

The crowd was even more silent for this match. The match ends in 7:12 with Mahoney hitting his finisher and getting the pin. The announcing team tries to make me interested in this match, but it's just not hitting for anything. I get that Striker's gimmick was that he was a "teacher," would spank people if they didn't follow his rules, and so on. But, for Pete's sake. This match should've been left off, as it killed any sort of heat the opening segment had (save for portions of the crowd chanting "BALLS!" at each of Mahoney's signature punches). Hell, I would've rather'd seen Taz(z) get out there for five seconds and submit Jerry Lawler again like at ONS '06.

We're given a promo where Sabu is taken out of the main event. This is yet another sign of just sheer clusterf***iness. Sabu, an ECW Original, one of the guys who made this event possible (without Sabu and other originals, you'd have no ECW to butcher, WWE), is taken out of the event. Fans start chanting "bullsh**"--and rightfully so. It was an unneeded segment. Regardless of the "story" surrounding Sabu's removal, it was unneeded. His replacement, Hardcore Holly, was even less needed in this event.

Another tag-team match follows this, during which the crowd starts chanting for TNA. That's how bad this event's going. Now, TNA between 2004 and 2009 was actually pretty damn great. However, having your fans chant "TNA!" during a match where you've got some of your "new breed" going up against ECW (kind of) Originals FBI isn't a good look. Elijah Burke (ironically, later The Pope in...TNA) was pretty much doomed from the start, especially since this era of WWE already had its fair share of black guys they knew not what to do with (Cryme Tyme, Boogeyman, Marcus Von Cor, Maven, etc). Plus, unlike JTG, Burke couldn't even get sympathy cheers or become a meme. All Burke could do is throw legit punches and injure CM Punk.

Hey, look! It's German JTG. Wait, he's not German? Well, damn. I was misinformed.
Tommy Dreamer gets pinned by Daivari. That's all I've got to say about that. Now, Daivari is pretty badass in real life. But, having him go over Dreamer is stupidity. The match, like many of these matches, overstayed its welcome (even though aside from the opener and the main event, no match went over eight minutes).

How come Tommy never gets an Old School Raw call?
Kevin Thorn and Ariel (Shelly Martinez) versus Mike Knox and Kelly Kelly is up next. This match told no real story, featured so...many...stalls, and the only thing worth seeing in it is Ariel's cheeks. No, seriously. But, if you've seen her NSFW work, you probably won't even be awaken by those. This match featured some of the worse Diva work I've seen, and that's saying a lot. Almost no punches connect from either Diva and Ariel's Thesz Press was...just sadness.

Bewbs, amirite?
Sandman comes in, beer in tow, and procceds to beat Thorn. In other words, a repeat of 2005 and 2006's ONS events. I guess it, at least, got the crowd pumped up again. However, this went on for way too long.

And now? The main event.

Something's not right with this picture...
Just can't tell what...
Let me start off by saying that Black Lesn--I mean Bobby Lashley should never have spoken, at all. You know how Lesnar, even though he's a badass, sounds kind of squeaky-voiced when he gets mad? Lashley sounds like a college professor giving a lecture. As with this entire event, we're given another promo for the main event. Then another promo! The pre-main event promos go on for about 30 minutes. At this point, I'm really about to just say f*** this and go watch Total Divas. But, I promised you a review. The first person eliminated is CM Punk and Bobby Lashley won the ECW Title. That's all I've got to say about the main event.

Closing thoughts: I started this review with the hopes of changing peoples' minds about D2D. I thought that maybe, since we look at it with crap-colored lenses, that it wasn't as bad as we remembered. However, with the dreck that I just sat through, I'd only recommend this pay-per-view if you were waterboarding someone for terrorist secrets. Seriously. Jack Bauer has nothing on D2D. I checked out of most matches because they had a "who cares?" feel to them, and the ones I forced myself to watch, I found myself regretting my choice. Originals lost or got shoved into crap segments.

Now, the actual wrestling wasn't horrible (it was pretty damned bad, though), but it was a horrible PPV. No stories were told, nothing connected, and it just felt like the ultimate one-fingered salute to any WWECW fan--or any original ECW fan. If you want to get your wrestling fan a gag gift, find a copy of D2D on DVD and gift it to them.

They'll probably beat you to death with it, amirite?


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