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Friday, January 8, 2016

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EOTR PPV Review: Fully Loaded 1998

By @Headliner5 



So I'm being forced to review a PPV that took place during the Attitude Era against my will.  If you follow me on Twitter (@Headliner5) then you probably know how much I don't like this Era. Reason being because although it was good for it's time and wrestling desperately needed something different, it has aged like sour milk and let's face it, just wasn't that good looking back at it.

The Attitude Era was famous for having a million matches on one PPV and most of those matches only lasted six minutes or so which is another reason why I absolutely hate this era.  But against my will, here we go.

This event had a total of nine matches on it and the shortest match was 4:46, while the longest match went an entire thirty minutes. Let's get to it before I stall any further and keep rambling.

The first match of the night was Val Venis taking on Jeff Jarrett, who at the time was accompanied by Tennessee Lee. This match was honestly nothing special, just your typical "Porn Star" Gimmick vs a Guitar Wielding pissed off dude and honestly it wasn't that great. Venis would dominate the first part of the match with a few near falls. Later on, shenanigans ensue, which leads to Jeff Jarrett and the referee hitting heads and Val Venis was able to pin Jarrett via roll up.

The next match of the night was the latest battle in a trend that would continue throughout the night, as it was DX VS. The Nation. Here, X-Pac took on D'Lo Brown in your typical attitude era mid card hell match. This match was okay and featured some good back and forth action, but it was hurt by being too damn short. Still, 8 minutes back in the attitude era isn't anything to scoff at, but I prefer longer matches that have the opportunity to tell an appropriate story which is why I look down up on this era. The match would come to an end when D'Lo hits X-Pac with the Low Down to pick up the win.

The third match of the night was a tag team match as Faarooq and Scorpio took on Terry Funk and Bradshaw. Before this match took place, Funk and Bradshaw cut a backstage promo and it was in this promo where Funk revealed to his partner Bradshaw that after this match he would be taking some time off to "recharge his batteries". Faarooq and Scorpio would go on to the win this match after Scorpio hit a splash on Funk to win the match. The aftermath of this match featured Bradshaw beating the holy crap out of everyone including Funk, who was going on hiatus after this match.

The next and fourth match featured Vader and Mark Henry in a battle of two big men and this match honestly could have been so much better and Vader by the Attitude Era was just a novelty while Mark Henry wouldn't find his stride until years later. Therefore, we get a below average match in the ring while on paper it looked great but at the end just didn't deliver.

The fifth match between Hawk and Animal and Skull and 8 Ball. This match features a declining Road Warriors team, even though were weren't quite to the worst part of it yet, but that would come later. Weeks before this match, Paul Ellering, LOD's longtime manager would turn on his former team and align himself with Skull and 8 Ball so this match was centered around the manager for the most part which made it extremely weird.

Near the end of the match, LOD would hit the Doomsday device but thanks to DOA using "Twin Magic" (back when it actually worked and one of them didn't have huge boobs *cough Bella Twins cough*). The DOA were able to steal the win here.

The sixth match was a Dungeon match between Owen Hart and Ken Shamrock in Stu Hart's famous Dungeon where the entire Hart Family was trained. The match was not held live, but was instead taped earlier in the day. Dan Severn was the special guest referee. Shamrock was truly coming into this match as an outsider as Owen Hart would use all of the Dungeon's elements to his advantage. The idea behind this match was to make your opponent submit and near the end of the match Shamrock went for a kick on Hart but Hart ducked out of the way and Shamrock connected with Severn. Hart took advantage by grabbing a random dumbbell and hitting Shamrock in the head with it. Hart then lifted Shamrock's head up off of the ground and took his arm and made Shamrock tap out by using his own arm to make Shamrock's hand hit the mat at that time Severn would recover and call the match and declare Owen the winner via shenanigans.




The seventh match of the night was a two out of three falls match for the WWF Intercontinental Championship and this is probably the best match of the night and it's not even a contest. This match was centered around HHH overcoming the odds as The Nation would interfere early on which would eventually lead to DX hitting the ring and an all out war erupting. The Rock would distract the referee which in turn allowed Brown to distract Triple H but Triple H would nail D'Lo with the IC Title. This led to the first fall which the Rock picked up via Rock Bottom on Triple H. After the fall, the two would rest and Triple H would go for a chair, but Rock beat him to it and went to hit Triple H, but Triple H avoided it and The Rock knocked out the referee. Chyna would DDT The Rock onto the chair which allowed Triple H to pin the Rock for the second fall of the match and tie the match 1 to 1.

As the third and final fall would begin, Triple H hits the Pedigree on the Rock but the time limit of the match would expire. The Rock would retain the title via no contest. Seriously if there's one match that I would recommend watching on this mess of a PPV this would be the one.



Up next was the Bikini contest between Jacqueline and Sable. Jerry Lawler served as judge or something of that nature (he really just wanted to see Sable's boobs). Sable would win the contest due to having handprints on her boobs, but then the decision was reversed due to her bikini not being an actual bikini and therefore Jacqueline would win. This angle ultimately led to Sable's exit from the company and the lawsuit that would follow it.

We are finally to the main event and the ninth match of the night, as the Tag Team Titles are on the line as Kane and Mankind defended the titles against current WWF Champion Stone Cold Steve Austin and his Summerslam Opponent The Undertaker. Austin went for a Stunner and Kane blocked the move and instead chokeslammed the Undertaker. The Undertaker and Mankind got into it outside of the ring, Mankind went for a chair and threw it into the ring which allowed Austin to grab it and hit Kane with it. Kane no sold the attack and quickly got control to turn the advantage in his teams favor. Kane and Mankind began dominating the match until Austin hit the Stone Cold Stunner on both Kane and Mankind. Austin would then tag in The Undertaker, who would then chokeslam both Kane and Mankind. The match came to an end when Undertaker would hit Kane with a tombstone piledriver to score the pinfall and win the tag team titles for both Austin and himself. This match sort of started the trend of two rivals being tag team champions going into big matches as the next month Austin and Taker would wrestle for the WWF Title at Summerslam 98 and this formula has been repeated numerous times since going into big events.

This PPV was okay at best, not the worst of the era but not the best. However, it's enjoyable for the most part. As far as recommending this show to someone, I honestly wouldn't the only reason I watched it was for purposes of this review, otherwise I would have stayed as far away from it as possible even though I did watch the original airing back in 1998. And there's the Attitude Era in a nutshell kids....now I shall go bleach my eyes.

-Nathan

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