The Three Way Dance
A little background on this show: in January, 1995, the Public Enemy
(Rocco Rock and Johnny Grunge) were enjoying their second reign as ECW
tag champs. The defended those belts against Sabu and the Tazmaniac
(not yet Taz) in a double tables match (yup, just like the one at this
past year's Royal Rumble) on February 4th. That match saw Johnny
Grunge and Taz put each other through a table, eliminating them from the
match. Rocco Rock then put Sabu through a table, but the ref was
knocked out and didn't see it. Sabu then put Rock through a table to
win the belts for his team. Then Chris Benoit ran down to the ring and
attacked both Sabu and Rock, powerbombing Sabu off the top rope onto
Rock who was laying on a table (sound familiar?).
Then, on February 25th, Benoit and his Triple Threat partner Dean
Malenko attacked the Public Enemy during and interview and went on to
beat Sabu and Taz for the belts. So the Public Enemy proposed a Three
Way Dance to blow off the feud once and for all.
So what's the big deal? Well, this wasn't the first ever three way
match, but the concept was still pretty new to make it a special event.
I mean, you see three way matches almost every week, but at the time
this was still something unique, and a perfect way to blow off the feud.
Also, Sabu was scheduled to be at this show, but he was announced as
being over in Japan. He soon jumped to WCW for an uninspired run, so
the fans (and some of the wrestlers) were on his case all night. What's
that line about history repeating itself?
One last note: I like to mention whatever happened to certain
wrestlers, and I may have an event or date wrong. So if you see a
mistake, let me know and I'll correct it, 'kay?
Taped April 8, 1995 ECW Arena
Joey introduces the tape, explaining how it was supposed to be The
Public Enemy vs. Benoit/Malenko vs. Taz/Sabu, but Sabu was held up in
Tape opens with Joey bringing out Raven, Stevie Richards, and the
Broad Street Bullies (Johnny Hotbody and "Hitman" Tony Stetson, if you
were wondering). We cut ahead, and Stevie's got a challenge for the
Bullies. If they beat his mystery team, everything's cool. If they
lose, they're out of the Flock. Anyway, it turns out to be...The
Pitbulls (two big roided guys with the ingenious names of Pitbull #1 and
Pitbull #2). So we get...
The Broad Street Bullies vs. The Pitbulls: Squash. The 'bulls nuke
the Bullies in under a minute, finishing off Stetson with a Superbomb
in under a minute (:58) 1/4* Joey laughingly refers to the Bullies as
one of the finest tag teams in ECW history.
Raven's actually proud of Stevie for once. The Pitbulls swear their
allegiance to Raven, and vow to win the tag titles. They would do that
in a few months, ironically from Raven and Richards. Pitbull #2 was
bleeding from the mouth for some reason.
But we're not done. Raven sends the Pitbulls to the back to, I dunno,
get him some coffee or something. Stevie then plays "This Is Your Life"
with Raven and brings out a girl that went to summer camp with Raven
and Tommy Dreamer years ago (you think I'm making this up?). Raven
apparently had some bad times with this girl, calling her a "fat,
disgusting, overweight piece of hell." And in a historic moment, out
comes Beulah McGillicutty, who is, shall we say, quite far from a piece
Then we cut to...
Tommy Dreamer vs. Raven Tommy's still wearing tights, but he has a
T-shirt on, so he only looks like a half tool. Match is one big brawl,
as they fight around the arena almost instantly The cheese grater makes
its debut here. They fight in the crowd, and it's really hard to tell
what's happening. Dreamer drags Raven back to the crow's nest and hits
a splash on the stage. Back in the ring, Tommy hits the Four Corner
piledeiver. Richards starts hitting on Beulah on the outside . Raven
manages a comeback with a pair of DDTs, a second rope dropkick , and a
powerslam. Richards is priceless on the outside. Dreamer turns a
hiptoss into a DDT as Richards kisses Beulah, only to be slapped. He
starts choking her, and Tommy comes outside rather than go for the
pin...and Beulah squirts him in the eyes with hairspray! Swerve!
Dreamer then eats a superkick from Richards, and spins around into a
Raven DDT on the concrete. Raven rolls him into the ring for the 3
count. (8:44) *1/2 Okay brawl. Dreamer wouldn't pin Raven for almost
Ron Simmons vs. Mikey Whipwreck Mikey's still in his wimp phase.
This was after Simmons's run in WCW, and just before he jumped to the
WWF as Farooq Asaad. Man, he's pudgy here. Ron threatens to kick
Mikey's ass, so Mikey stalls forever. Entire match is Ron methodically
[read: boringly] beating up Mikey. Mikey tries a comeback with some
crotchshots and a top-rope dropkick. But he gets powerslammed by
Simmons coming off the top a second time. Simmons drags up Mikey and
hits a chokeslam. And then another. Then Simmons chokeslams referee
John Finnegan...for the DQ? Bleh. (5:24) That's enough to bring out
911. Umm, if you didn't know, 911 was Paul E.'s bodyguard who came out
and chokeslammed a variety of people (you know, awful wrestlers, guitar
players, Santa Claus, that sort of thing). That's all he ever did,
which is good, because he was a horrible wrestler.
Anyway, Ron disposes of Mikey by gorilla pressing him onto the big guy,
then we get the showdown. 911 tries to chokeslam Ron, but Simmons
manages a lowblow and hits a chokeslam of his own,. Crowd isn't
pleased. Jobbers come out to check on 911, and he goes nuts and
chokeslams them one at a time. Question: If you were in the ring and
saw a huge man go nuts and chokeslam someone, would you hang around?
Well, the jobbers do, and each one eats a chokeslam. 911 gets on the
stick and calls Ron a piece of shit. 911 went on to be a jobber in WCW
as "Sledgehammer Al," or some such nonsense, and was served up as cannon
fodder for Lex Luger during his "rack the big guy" phase. Oh, match was
Chris Benoit on the stick! Man, he's got poofy hair. He calls out
the Tazmaniac and calls Sabu a "pussy" twice. Boy, Chris is awful on
the mic. Anyway, out comes Taz, and they start slugging away, until
Deano blindsides Taz to make it a 2 on 1. Then Rick Steiner runs out
and the place goes nuts. Taz and Steiner clean house, and we've got the
final participant in the 3 Way Dance. I know it may seem weird to newer
fans, but this was actually something worth getting excited about.
2 Cold Scorpio vs. EDDIE~! Guerrero Boo yaa! This is Eddie's first
ECW match, and he gets a title shot no less. Actually, 2 Cold beat
Hector Guerrero on ECW TV prior to this and Eddie wants revenge.
Scorpio's right shoulder is taped up. Eddie soaks up an "Eddie" chant
to start. Guerrero starts with a go behind, and turns it into a side
headlock and takeover. Scorpio shoves Eddie into the ropes, and Eddie
tries a shoulderblock to no avail. Scorpio grabs Eddie's leg after a
tie-up, but Eddie flips him over and applies a headscissors. But
Scorpio reverses it and turns it into a STF like move, but Eddie
reverses that into an armlock and tries a pin, but only gets a one
count. Eddie than turns an armwringer into a backdrop suplex. Scorpio
rolls to the outside, as Joey brings up "Love Machine" Art Barr. Eddie
offers a handshake, but Scorpio shoves him down, but Eddie kips back up
to his feet. They tie up again, and Scorpio hits a back heel trip and
goes for a cover, but Eddie kicks out, trips Scorpio, and also goes for
a cover. to no avail. Scorpio offers a handshake, but Eddie turns it
into a clothesline, then rakes Scorpio's face with his boot. He then
picks up Scorpio and slams him, then goes to the apron and hits the
slingshot somersault senton. Eddie then applies a Scorpion Deathlock,
but Scorpio reverses to a leglock. Eddie's in the ropes, so he breaks.
They tie up again, but Eddie hits a standing dropkick. He then hits the
brainbuster followed by the frog splash, but it only gets two. Eddie
applies a rear chinlock as the crowd chants "Fuck Sabu!" Scorpio kicks
his way out, but Eddie responds by poking him in the eye. Eddie whips
Scorpio into the ropes, but Scorpio reverses it, ducks down, then
leapfrogs Eddie, and finally hits a Japanese armdrag. He follows it up
with a standing dropkick, then a superkick. Scorpio waits on Guerrero
and hits a pump kick, then tosses Eddie outside. Scorpio then whips
Eddie into the steel guardrail HARD, then does it again. He suplexes
Eddie into the ring and gets a two count. Scorpio hits a double
underhook suplex and gets another 2 count. He tries a go behind, but
Eddie mule kicks him in the groin and follows up with a running
clothesline. Scorpio rolls to the outside, and Eddie goes to the top
rope and hits a huge cross bodyblock on the champion. He rolls Scorpio
back in and hits a cradle suplex for 2. Eddie rams Scorpio into the
top rope and manages a tornado DDT. That gets a two count Eddie chops
Scorpio in the corner and misses a charge. Scorpio goes to the top but
gets crotched by Eddie. Eddie follows up with a top rope 'rana, and
gets a two count. Eddie goes for another 'rana , but backflips off and
gets caught by a Scorpio cross body block which gets two. A Scorpio
follows with a right hand and another two count. Scorpio whips Eddie
into the corner and hits an avalanche and a bodyslam. He then hits a
gorgeous moonsault and gets another two count .Scorpio then hits a
powerbomb and a standing somersault leg drop. He sets Eddie up , and
then hits a mildly fucked-up Tumbleweed (top rope twisting somersault
leg drop-as cool as it sounds). He goes for the cover, and it looks
like he pulls Eddie up, but Joey sells it like Eddie kicked out.
Whatever Scorpio then sets up and hits another superkick. Scorpio then
chops Eddie and whips him into the ropes. It looks like he's going for
a hiptoss, but Eddie turns it into a rollup for the 3 count and the
title. (14:56) **** One of my favorite ECW matches. Eddie and 2 Cold
shake hands afterwards. Eddie would go on to feud with Dean Malenko
over the belt, resulting in some of ECW's best matches ever.
Axl Rotten vs. Ian Rotten: Hair vs. Hair. From Eddie to this. Axl
and Ian were once a tag team called the Bad Breed, but a loss to the
Pitbulls forced them to split up. So they started feuding with each
other in all sorts of crazy matches, like Taipei Glass Matches and the
like. Axl's really skinny here. Lots of brawling and hitting each
other with objects. with minimal wrestling. They fight in the crowd,
and you can't see what's happening half the time. This may have been
exciting if you're at the arena, but at home it's fast forward city.
Both men end up busted open somehow. The fight in the ring, then in the
crowd, then in the ring where Axl finishes off Ian by whipping him into
the ropes and hitting him with a chair. (9:55) DUD Axl shaves Ian
afterwards, but Ian then hits Axl with some kind of pan, then stabs him
in the forehead with the scissors. This was the PWI Feud of the Year
for 1995, believe it or not.
Hack Myers vs. Dino Sendoff. Hack's gimmick was that he was the
"Shah" of ECW. When he punched someone, the crowd yelled "Shah," and
when he got punched, the crowd yelled "shit!" After doing nothing of
note in ECW, he did some jobbing in WCW. Really bad match, with the low
point being Dino tripping over Myers when he drops down after an Irish
Whip. Myers wins with a brainbuster. (4:14) DUD
World Title Match: Shane Douglas vs. The Sandman (w/Woman) Sandman
does his looong entrance. I wonder if Nancy was hanging out with Chris
Benoit backstage? Sandman's still in his red shirt-American flag pants
stage. Shane demands that the Singapore cane be taken away. Douglas
attacks early, but the match is clipped (why?) to Sandman applying a
cross face chicken wing. He tells Woman to slap Douglas, but she
won't. Sandman then hits a shoulderbreaker and applies the chickenwing
again, but Woman still won't slap Douglas. Match is clipped to Sandy
hitting the top rope legdrop get the cane. Sandy then hits a
piledriver. Woman's got the cane Sandy lights up a smoke, but then
Woman turns on Sandman and tosses Douglas the cane. Douglas gets the
cane the crotches Sandy, then small packages for the pin. (3:18 shown)
Too much clipping to give a rating. And yes, Sandman's entrance took
longer than the match. Anyway, Woman would turn on Douglas next week and
help Sandman win the title.
Sandman gives an interview saying that he'll beat the crap out of
Douglas and Woman.
Douglas gives a lengthy interview and says pretty much what you'd
Main Event: Public Enemy vs. Benoit/Malenko vs. Tazmaniac/Rick
Steiner: PE comes out first, and they're over big time. They go into
the stands and give a PE jersey to some huge black guy named Big Vin.
Johnny leads another "Fuck Sabu" chant. Champs come next and they start
going at it right away with PE. Taz and Steiner come out third. Taz
has the caveman outfit going. Taz and Steiner clear the ring to start.
Rick hits the top rope bulldog on Benoit, and thankfully doesn't break
his neck. Steiner hits a Fire Thunder Driver on Rock and very nearly
breaks his neck. Lots of chaotic brawling that sees frying pans, cookie
sheets, and lunchboxes as weapons. While Steiner and the PE fight in the
stands, Benoit and Malenko hit a double flapjack on Taz in the ring.
Benoit then hits the swandive headbutt, and Dean rolls him up for the
pin, eliminating Taz and Steiner 6:49 into the match. They don't leave
though, and it takes forever before they finally take off. Steiner
then comes back and nails Benoit with the cellphone, and Joey brings up
the irony of Rick Steiner hitting someone with Paul E.'s phone. So
finally we're down to PE and Benoit/Malenko. Johnny Grunge is busted
open (big shock). Grunge hits a Vaderbomb on Malenko for two. Benoit
and Rock fight to the crow's nest, where Rock tries to put Benoit
through a table with the Drive By (a top rope somersault senton that's
not nearly as cool as the Hardy version), but Benoit moves. Back in
the ring, Grunge hits a neckbreaker on Malenko for two. Benoit comes
back and they start destroying PE. Benoit superplexes Rock through a
table that was not pre-cut Funny bit as Benoit and Malenko offer each
other the chance to pin Johnny Grunge. They go for a double back
bodydrop on Grunge, but he turns it into a double DDT. Then Rock comes
off the top with the Drive-By on Malenko for the pin and the belts.
Ending came out of nowhere. (19:57) **1/2 Too much listless brawling,
although it did pick up at the end.
Rock and Grunge celebrate as Taz and Steiner come back and fight with
Benoit and Malenko. Rock and Grunge are then jumped by the Pitbulls as
we fade out.
Closer: Taz(z), Benoit and Malenko are all in the WWF now, while
Steiner still hangs out in WCW. And the Public Enemy? Well, a
disastrous run in WCW ruined their credibility, and they've bounced
around the Big Three, and are pretty much an industry joke by now.
Guess they should have stayed big fish in a small pond.
So is this show worth it? Well, the wrestling ranges from crap to
decent to great, but you also have to consider how awful the Big Two
were at this period. If you ever wondered why people rave about ECW,
this tape shows the good and bad. Besides, it's a lot of fun to play
"Where are they now?"
If you dug this review, let me know. I have lots of older ECW stuff
that's always worth a second look.
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