WWE SMACKDOWN! 11/07/02

The opening video packages destroys one of the great quotes of WWII, by comparing The Big Slow to “the sleeping giant” Japan awakened at Pearl Harbor. The rest of it was good, almost good enough to make me want to see this feud continue. Almost.

On tape from Manchester, NH, this is WWE Smackdown! for 11/07/02. Your hosts are Michael Cole and Taz(z).

Steamy Intergender Action: Torrie Wilson and Billy Kidman vs. Jamie Noble and Nidia. The menfolk start with a wristlock sequence, leading to a Kidman headscissors. He takes an elbow on a charge, but lands on the second turnbuckle when Noble tries the catapult, and comes down with a jumping side kick for 2. Noble comes back with a nice pumphandle suplex for 2. The girls tag in, and Torrie drops Nidia with a clothesline. She puts the shoulders to Nidia in the corner, but Nidia comes back with the old mainstay of women’s wrestling: the hair takedown. She slams Torrie for 2, but Torrie blocks her clothesline and delivers a nice neckbreaker. Not-so-nice dropkick gets 2. Nidia misses a charge, and Noble’s chicanery draws Kidman in long enough for him (Noble, that is) to clothesline Torrie down. The girls tag out, and Kidman hits a leaping clothesline. He backdrops Noble, and follows with the Death Valley neckbreaker for 2. Noble buries a knee in his gut and plants him with a nasty DDT for 2. Kidman blocks the Tiger Driver, preserving the order of the universe, and hits a sitout powerbomb. Nidia saves, setting up the Pier Six. The girls catfight to the outside, and Kidman uses a tornado bulldog to set up the Shooting Star Press for the win at 5:05. This is what mixed tag matches should be: fun, not too long, and featuring good action from both genders. Nice opener. 5/10
(Winners: Kidman/Torrie, pinfall via Shooting Star Press @ 5:05)


Meanwhile, Slow waddles into the arena and bullies some workers. Wow, he’s MEAN. I’ve always said that if you can’t get a 500-pound man over as a monster, you should have him talk tough to stagehands.

After the break, Torrie and her dad have a chat.

Meanwhile, NUMBER ONE announcer Funaki talks to Rappin’ John Cena. He raps his cracks (no pun intended) on Rikishi, who comes up freestyles all up in Cena’s grill, yo. Damn, that knucklehead tried to dis. Maybe Cena’s found a gimmick for himself. It’d be appropriate for a heel, since people hate Vanilla Ice. I think he'd make a great tag team partner for Matt Hardy v1.0

Meanwhile, La Familia Guerrero catch Stephanie McMahon watching the tape of Easy Eric Bischoff planting one on her. Eddy wonders why they’re not wrestling for the titles, and since Eddy wants a title shot so badly, Steph books him against Brock Lesnarberg.

Rikishi vs. Ice Ice Cena. Cena takes Rikishi down by the leg and strikes a karate pose. He goes behind Rikishi, but can’t close his hands around the big man’s paunch. Rikishi shoulderblocks him down, and Cena bails. He comes back in shouts in Rikishi’s face, until a hard right shuts him up. Rikishi stops a Cena charge by bending over, so Cena tries to punch him in the ass. He acts like he just punched a bag of bricks, but recovers enough to dropkick Rikishi in the knee. He gets the big man up for a back suplex and works him over in the corner. Rikishi powers out, but promptly gets clotheslined down. Cena hits a missile dropkick for 2 and goes to the headlock. Rikishi elbows out and plants Cena with a Samoan drop. Fatass splash, stinkface, chokeslam, Banzai drop and it’s nighty-night, Vanilla Ice at 4:10. There were some decent comedy spots in here, and the match itself wasn’t offensive. I don't see the point of jobbing Cena when he might be finding his niche, though. 2/10
(Winner: Rikishi, pinfall via Banzai Drop @ 4:10)


Meanwhile, Matt Hardy v1.0 tells Shannon Moore about the evils of sugar, and instructs the young grasshopper in the ways of MATTITUDE~!

After the break, Al Wilson and Dawn Marie have a chat, and he says he’ll save his big question for the ring. The moments will seem like hours, I’m sure . . .

Meanwhile, Matt points out to Paul E. Dangerously that he has a habit of softening up Brock’s opponents for him, and gamely volunteers to do the same against Slow tonight. Brock is less than enthused, but Heyman sells him on the idea.

Here comes Al Wilson to the ring. What the heck is he even DOING in the ring? The fans break out the “What!?” routine during Al’s “speech,” which is a lot more interesting than hearing Mr. Monotone deliver his lines. The “What!?” shouts continue after Dawn comes out. Al breaks out the word “virile,” which is always a surefire way to woo the ladies. If you can’t charm them into the sack (which Al certainly can’t), you can always use the fifty-cent words. Dawn ponders her answer, Al threatens suicide if she says no, and I consider shooting my TV. She says yes, ending one of the mos brutally bad segments I can remember since I started recapping this show. Even Taz is begging for a commercial.

The Big Slow vs. Matt Hardy v1.0. If Slow is supposed to be so menacing, they really need to get him a new theme song. Tonight’s fun facts, from Mattitude.com: Matt hates cold weather, AND he scored 1330 on his SAT. Hah, I still gotcha beat by 60, hick-boy. Matt tries to brawl, but is quickly overwhelmed. Let’s see . . . fat guy offense, fat guy offense, chokeslam for the win at 1:54. Yeah, that’s a good thing to do with a fresh character like Hardy’s: job him to a useless slug like Slow. I know they need to keep him strong for the Brock match, but couldn’t someone else have eaten this rancid plate of squash? -2/10
(Winner: That Fat Tub of Shit, pinfall via chokeslam at 1:54)


Slow gets the stick again, and says some boring crap. He doesn’t sound TOO winded this week. I guess two minutes is his threshold. Brock reacts by chokeslamming an innocent TV backstage.

Tag Title Match, 2/3 Falls: Kurt Angle and Chris Benoit vs. Edge and Rey Mysterio. Damn, the top tier of the arena is DARK. First Fall: Angle and Rey start. Angle grabs an amateur takedown, but Rey answers with a drop toehold and armdrag. He leads Angle on a chase, and dupes him into crashing to the floor. Nice nod to the WCW days. Angle gets back in and clotheslines Rey down. Rey headscissors him over and tags Edge. Benoit tags in, and Edge gets flurry of offense, hitting a shoulderblock, armdrag, and dropkick. Edge chops and pounds Benoit in the corner. He cheap shots Angle, but that allows Benoit to club him from behind and hit a high back suplex. Angle comes in, and immediately cheap shots Rey. Angle chokes Edge on the ropes and suplexes him for 2. Benoit comes in and lays the chops to Edge. Edge elbows out of a German, and the Impaler leaves both men down. Rey tags in, and since Benoit is still down, he hits a springboard legdrop for 2. Benoit takes a drop toehold into the buckle, and Edge whips Angle into the corner after him, spearing both men. Edge dropkicks Angle out and launches Rey into a Frankensteiner on Benoit, but Angle saves. Angle gets dumped again, and Edge holds Benoit for Rey’s Bombs Away at 6:00. Rey/Edge 1-0

Second Fall:
Angle works over both men, but walks into a Rey armdrag. He comes back with an overhead belly-to-belly, then a back suplex for 2. Benoit comes in and gutbusters Rey, then knees him in the corner. He goes up with Rey on his shoulders, but Rey fights out and comes down with a super bulldog, leaving both men down. Angle and Edge tag in, and Edge cleans house. Benoit gets tossed, and Angle takes an overhead suplex. Edge goes for the spear, which Angle sidesteps right into the ref, allowing Benoit to waylay Edge with a title belt. Edge taps to the Anglelock in short order at 9:23 total time. 1-1 Tie

Third Fall:
After a commercial break, Angle pounds Rey in the corner and chokes him. Angle tosses Rey, allowing Benoit to work him over on the outside while, Kurt busies the ref with keeping Edge out of the ring. Rey gets rolled in for 2. Rey reverses a vertical suplex into one of his own and adds a heel kick. Edge comes in and stomps a BAH GAWD MUDHOLE into Angle. Edge pounds away, but Angle halts the hemorrhaging with an overhead belly-to-belly. Benoit tags in and backdrops Edge. He backbreakers Edge and slaps on a half-crab. Edge fights out, and Angle comes back in with another cheap shot for Rey. He puts the boots to Edge and clotheslines him for 2. Benoit is back in, and he puts the knees to Edge. Edge elbows him on a charge, but Benoit clubs him to stop his climb. He takes them both up, then down with a super back suplex. Both men tag out, and Rey comes in with a dropkick for Angle. Angle posts himself on a charge, and Rey follows with a Bronco Buster. Benoit pulls him off with a German suplex, in a nifty spot. Rey slips out of the Olympic Slam and runs Angle into Benoit. Angle ducks the 619 and tries to catapult Rey into the corner. Rey lands on the top rope and leaps onto Angle. Angle blocks the ‘rana try, but Rey victory rolls him for the win at 15:56 total time. Angle had grabbed the bottom rope, and pleads his case to the ref. After another commercial break, he decision is made to hold the third fall again. So . . .

Third Fall, Take 2: Rey dropkicks both heels, so Benoit whips him HARD into the corner. A filthy back suplex follows, for 2. Angle slugs Rey down in the corner and snapmares him over. Benoit comes in and dropkicks him square in the face. He chops Rey down and hits a nice gutwrench suplex for 2. Angle comes in and hits his own gutwrench, though his was much sloppier. Give him a couple weeks. Edge saves. Rey fights out of a submission hold and breaks out the wheelbarrow DDT. Edge gets his second hot tag of the match, and goes back into house afire mode. He dumps Benoit and hits the Edge-O-Matic on Angle for 2. Angle grabs the Anglelock, but Edge rolls out, sending Angle crashing into the second turnbuckle. Rey hits a 619 from the floor, around the ringpost, in a really cool spot. Edge spears Angle and covers as Benoit goes up. He comes down with the Kamikaze headbutt, but Edge moves and Angle gets hit. Rey dropkicks Benoit out, and Edge covers for 3 at 4:38 after the restart. I’m not a fan of restarts and Dusty finishes, but this was another very good match between these four. 8/10
(Winners and new Tag Champs; Edge/Rey, 2 falls to 1)


After the break, Marc Loyd gets a prediction from Slow on the Brock-Eddy match. Slow says he’ll be the winner, and Loyd is cornfuzzled.

Meanwhile, the Guerreros inform Paul hey share his lack of confidence in Brock’s ability to beat Slow. Guerrero mouths off some more, causing Brock to storm out of the dressing room and give chase, until Paul stops him and gives him a tongue-lashing. Paul tells Brock he’ll be wrestling Guerrero alone, which doesn’t seem to faze Brock overmuch.

Main Event: Eddy Guerrero vs. Brock Lesnarberg. Eddy tries to ambush Brock with Chavo’s help, but Brock overpowers them. In the ring, Eddy tries to slug it out, but Brock knees him. He shoulders Eddy in the corner, then they do the slug/knee bit again. Brock hits Snake Eyes, and bearhugs Eddy for a moment before tossing him down. Brock locks Eddy in a chicken-wing backbreaker submission move. Eddy rolls to the apron, so Brock casually tosses him back in the ring. He knocks Chavo off the apron, allowing Eddy a lowblow. Eddy lands a flurry of forearms and kicks before kicking the leg to setup the El Paso Lasso. Brock powers out, but Eddy comes right back with a dropkick to the knee. He chokes Brock, and while he gets admonished, Chavo chokes Brock from the apron. Eddy dropkicks Brock, but Brock growls, “NO POBO~!!” and clotheslines Eddy down. He hits the overhead suplex and charges Eddy, but Chavo pulls him out of way, forcing Brock to post himself. Eddy locks in a Fujiwara armbar. Chavo goes up, but Brock sees it and whips Eddy into the corner, sending Chavo tumbling to the outside. The F5 finishes Eddy at 6:41. Eddy’s lack of offense was pretty disappointing here, but the match was good enough. 5/10
(Winner: Brock Lesnar, pinfall via F5 @ 6:41)


After the match, Brock celebrates on the stage when The Big Slow attacks him from behind. He hoists Brock up and tosses him off the stage. That was about two feet more than The Undertaker fell, and it looks like they took some of the spring out of the pad, too. Heyman is out, looking very concerned as the credits pop up.

The Breakdown:

The Good: An excellent tag team match, a solid main event, and even a good intergender match make this a good show in the ring. The Cena/Rikishi comedy match served its purpose well enough. It’s easy to see that the guys in the ring enjoy themselves on Smackdown, while I don’t get that same feeling watching Raw.

The Bad: I’ll defer until the next section.

The Ugly: Not only does The Big Slow squash Matt Hardy in under two minutes, but we had to put up with Al Wilson on the stick. If it were possible for a person to have negative charisma, Wilson’s your man. I know he’s not trained to be in front of a crowd every week, which is all the more reason to NOT LET HIM TALK.

Overall: Those blemishes aside, this was another solid episode of Smackdown. I don’t have many complaints about the show in general, and the good points are usually enough to back-burner them anyway. Put another good one in the books and let’s snicker at Raw’s attempts to keep pace. 7/10

Dr. Tom
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