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Rebecca Cerese




Hey All! On Sunday Night, the WWF put on one of the most thrilling displays of technical wrestling that I have ever seen. Add in a bit of plunder, a couple of holy shit spots, and some good old fashioned Sports Entertainment, and Sunday Night's Backlash left little to complain about...and for once the booking didn't seem too screwy. I think there is an unwritten rule that if a PPV is good, then RAW the following night is not allowed to be good, because to be honest, I hated this week's RAW. WAAAYYY to much McMahon for my taste...god how long was that opening interview, then we get to see them not once more but twice...Yuck, throw in the Hardys being jobbed out to Too Cool for god's sake, and my Christian getting a big ass in his face, and needless to say I was not a happy camper. So lets first concentrate on the good, and take a look at the wonderful PPV called Backlash.

I think there is something about this PPV that is just special. Last year, Backlash was really good too, with the Main Event seeing a rematch from last years WM with Stone Cold vs. the Rock, in a contest that was a million times better than their WM meeting. ON paper though, this card didn't really look that great to me, but it translated into some of the best wrestling matches I have seen in a long time...and oh yeah, I finally got my bloody X-Pac...

Ok, so I have been waiting for a bloody X-Pac for a long time, and I never once suspected that it would be my favorite wrestler Christian that would have the honor of busting him open, but I have to say I was ecstatic. Call me sick, but I have been waiting for X-Puke to get his ass kicked for a long time. So the tag team title match opened the show, and although a strange choice for an opener, it ended up working really well. Of course it was a lot of Christian getting his ass surprise there, but surprisingly little of Edge in the match. Honestly was he even in there for 3 minutes? Not that I'm complaining that Christian got most of the in ring time, but this also included being subjected to the Bronco Buster (god do I hate that move), the punch, punch, stupid white boy dance, punch and the wiggly wobbly leg drop all within a few seconds. But I was glad to see him exacting his revenge when he grabbed the ring bell, and clocked X-Puke across the face with it, and got the pin. I was very happy to see 2Blondes escape with the belts, and in true heel fashion as well. These guys are going to go places, the WWF just needs to keep giving them mic time and give them some more victories. On RAW they ended up getting a ton of mic time, and I was loving that. Their commentating was once again hilarious, esp. Edge's " someone was selling a lock of my hair on E-Bay for $50" comment. Their attack of the Dudleys was also good, hopefully laying groundwork for them to feud again sometime down the line, hopefully soon. But then that is where they lost me. They issue an open challenge and out comes Rikishi and Showkishi. Again, I understand Big Show is trying to get over, but I don't understand why they have to do it at the expense of the champions. So Christian and Edge just get their asses handed to them by these two monsters, and then they get thrown back in, by stupid DX no less, to suffer the "stinkface" as JR calls it, my least favorite move in the WWF right now. Honestly, I can't understand how anyone agrees to let Rikishi do this move to them, and I certainly did not need an extreme close-up of Christian getting his beautiful face smashed by Rikishi's giant ass. Why didn't we get a similar close-up of Edge getting his face buried in Big Show's behind. I think the way to go with these type of heelish cocky characters is have them be obnoxious and then win all their matches, similar to Kurt Angle, and then they will be hated even more, well not by me, but you get what I'm saying. This serves to get them over, and give them credibility as champions.

Ok, Christian rant out of the way early this time....

The second match at Backlash was probably my favorite match of the night, Dean Malenko (who will now be referred to as THE MAN) vs. Scotty II Hotty. I wondered how the crowd would react to this match, but I needn't have worried. Dean Malenko, I mean THE MAN has a way of making technical wrestling amazing and dazzling to watch. He truly tells a story with his matches, and what a storyteller he is. We start off with THE MAN methodically going after Scotty's knee. Every time Scotty thought he was escaping from THE MAN's grasp, THE MAN would do something else to trap him. The match starts to go back and forth, and the longer the match goes, the better the match gets. At no point did this contest drag or become tedious, it was just good wrestling plain and simple. The ending just made the match too, because not only did THE MAN emerge as the winner, he did so in kickass fashion. That reversal of the superplex into the ddt off the top rope was so amazing I thought Scotty's neck was broken, that's how real it looked. Amazing, amazing contest and the right man wins the match...amazing.

I can't remember what was next, if it was the 6 man hardcore match or the only boring, crappy match of the night...Bull Buchanan and Bossman vs. the Acolytes. I was very surprised that the B.B's went over in this match. I find it mind boggling why the WWF seems to love Bossman so much. I mean this guy should be curtain jerking Jakked, and instead he is winning over resident badasses the Acolytes. I know Sharon was not happy with the outcome of this match, as she loves the Acolytes, and although I really couldn't care either way, I was very surprised to see the men in Blue emerge victorious.

6 Man Hardcore match: I have to say this was one of the most enjoyable Hardcore matches I have ever seen, excluding the Hardys fighting each other last week on Smackdown of course (How good was the match between the brothers?). There was plenty of plunder, but the thing about this match that I really loved was the flow of the match. Since the objective was to pin Crash only, it had a definite focus, and therefore flowed much better than the similar contest at WM 2000. Plus throw the Hardy Boyz in any match as far as I'm concerned, and suddenly the match is about 100 times better. Matt took center stage for once, and actually got the only holy shit chant of the night when he did his insane jump off the top of the swinging hook which marked the entrance ramp. All of the other participants were standing under him to catch him, but it didn't make this spot any less hard for me to watch. Those damn Hardys are a bunch of insane guys, and man do I love them. I worry about their safety every time they go out there, but I LOVE THEM. So that is why I was disturbed as hell to see them jobbed out cleanly to the returning team of Too Cool on RAW. Now don't get me wrong, I don't think the Hardys are past the point of jobbing, but I do think they are past the point of jobbing cleanly to Too Cool to get them over. I know the crowd was really into Too Cool last night, even booing the Hardys (now this I don't understand...I mean how the hell can you boo the freakin Hardys), but still there is no way at this point in their careers they should be jobbing to Too Cool to get them over....Boo hiss to whoever booked the ending of this match.

But getting back to the Hardcore I was saying this match had a great flow, and great sequences, too bad the camera crew seemed to miss a lot of it. I still don't know exactly what the Hardys did to Hardcore and Saturn at the end of the match because the camera completely missed it and didn't give us a replay. Still, not much else to complain about here. Crash runs off...or more aptly crawls off with the belt and remains the Hardcore champion.

As much as I enjoyed the Hardys cameo in the Hardcore division, the WWF needs to keep the brothers in the tag team division. This is where they belong right now, this is where they need to be. Hell they need to eventually feud with Edge and Christian and win the belts from them...preferably at Summerslam where I will be in attendance...but I fear it will be a miracle if 2blondes are able to hold onto the belts for that long.

I believe next up was the positively hilarious Kurt Angle vs. Big Show appearing as Hulk Hogan. When Real American started to blast over the loudspeaker I said to my friend Tom, Show is coming out as Hulk, but I had no idea he was going to do the whole first part of his match as Hulk. I have never laughed so hard in my whole life from anything wrestling related before. The promo, the blonde goatee, the whole "Hulking" up and of course the Hogan moves were all priceless. Then of course we get Angle kicking out of the leg whoever scripted this match was a freakin genius, and kudos to the Big Show for doing such a dead on Hogan impression. And man, those yellow trunks were nasty...So Angle surprisingly does the job, but I was laughing so hard I barely even noticed.

The Dudleys were up next, in a match that I have named FUN with Tables. Man, the blood lust of the crowds these days are scary. They don't even care about the Dudleys matches, they just want to see someone go through a table. Apparently the tinier and more feminine you are the more the crowd wants to see it. I know I will sound like a wimp, but I really didn't want to see Trish go through a table, and I must say I hate any kind of stretcher angle. Since the potential for getting hurt is so real in wrestling, I hate seeing stretchers used when they are not really necessary. It just brings back memories of when they were necessary, something I really don't want to think about. But that being said, I was once again shocked that T & A went over the Dudleys. Buh Buh couldn't keep his eyes off of Trish and it cost him the match. He certainly exacted his revenge though by taking her and brutally putting her through a table. This was certainly no Terri Runnels Table Bomb. Trish went through full force, no Buh Buh butt to break the table first. So where do they go from here with both Trish and the Dudleys. Will Buh Buh continue to be obsessed with her, or will having put her through the table free him from that. Where do T& A go from here? Will the Dudleys try and get revenge on Edge and Christian for doing a "run-in" during their match on RAW? Questions, Questions and no answers.

So unbelievably Esse Rios vs. Eddy Guerrero is the third to last match of the night. I must say, I was shocked to see them so high up on the card. I was also shocked that they did not show any of Eddy's prom, it just seems like something the WWF would do. Eddy and Chyna looked very stylish in their prom clothes, and I loved watching Eddy wrestle in his tux and bow tie. This match started off very tentatively, with zero crowd reaction, and a blown spot by Esse. It was quite obvious that Esse was feeling a little nervous over his big match up. However, after the first few five minutes, the match really hit its stride and became an amazing contest. Esse loosened up and him and Eddy found their groove, and just let loose. Really good stuff from both men, and of course Esse hit some of his absolutely mind boggling aerial offense. The end saw that crazy kid Lita ripping off Chyna's dress. I have to say Chyna has one of the best bodies I have ever seen in my life. When she was standing there in her bra and panties, I was thinking to myself, man I would kill for a body like that. Hell, I would sit there and flaunt it too...Eddy's expression made it even cooler as he was certainly enjoying the view...

Last match before the Main Event, and rightfully so was Benoit vs. Jericho. I must say, that I thought on this particular night, Chris Benoit aka Mr. Roboto cut a better pre-match promo than the Ayottolah of Rock n Rollah Chris Jericho. Benoit was just so intense it was amazing to behold. I knew we were about to witness a war... Now of course the ending sucked, esp. from the first camera angle they gave us where we couldn't see Jericho actually pick up the belt and use it, and it looked like the ref just called for a DQ for no reason, but when they showed the other angle, the call made a lot more sense. But still crappy ending aside, not much else to complain about here. When a match starts off with both men slapping each other across the face, you just know it's going to be an intense contest. Back and forth, back and forth, Benoit flys out of the ring and lands on his head, more chops than I could even count. Suplexes, powerbombs, and yeah, did I mention chops and this contest had me practically salivating. This will not be the last meeting with these two, and I can't wait for the next one...

What I don't understand is how the WWF follow up this extremely intense and excellent match with what they did on RAW. Jericho vs. X-Puke for the 80th time, and its not even like the contests between these two are that great. Jericho is subjected to the bronco buster and doesn't even get the win...Does Waltman ever job cleanly to anyone? And then they give us this meaningless Tazz vs. Benoit match which lasted about 2 minutes, and did nothing but set up Saturn coming out, distracting Tazz for no good reason which led to a surprise pin by Benoit. What the hell was the purpose of this match other than to piss me off. On any other day, it probably would have been ok, but following that Benoit/Jericho contest these half fought/half thought out matches just didn't cut it.

I'm really not going to spend much time on the main event, because despite the fact we have a new champion, the Main Event really doesn't interest me. I am not a HHH fan, and although I like the Rock ok, he really doesn't excite me in any way...although he is very nice to look at. That being said, I was not really looking forward to this match, and in fact I found it very boring at the beginning. The amount of punches and kicks was mind boggling actually. When Rock hit the double rockbottom on HHH and Shane through the Spanish Announce table that finally got my attention. Stone Cold coming out with a giant beer gut clocking every one in sight with a chair was kind of cool, but nothing to write home about. I was glad to see Rock win, if only to get the title off of HHH, but I was already dreading the inevitable "I got screwed" speech we were going to be subjected to on RAW. Surprisingly it didn't really go down that way, but I really don't know what the hell HHH was saying on RAW because the man was putting me to sleep. He just went on and on saying nothing, and then his lovely wife took the mic to torture us some more, but no we weren't done yet, Vince takes the mic, threatens to hurt his own wife, and then makes some other totally uninteresting threats....Can we say boring... especially since this was leading up to a Shane vs. Rock cage match...what the hell? Of course Shane took his amazing bumps as usual, and looked impressive in the ring as usual, but this match just did nothing for me...boring. The good thing is with HHH being injured and the Rock filming his movie next week, the WWF will have to think of something new and exciting to put in their main event, and I am looking really forward to that.

Thanks for reading my Backlash impressions... I would love to hear know where to find me...

Rebecca Cerese
[slash] wrestling

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