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OO PPV RECAP
WWE Survivor Series 
November 14, 2004

by The Rick
Undisputed Lord and Master of OnlineOnslaught.com

 

You people have to donate to the OO Pledge Drive, OK?  Pretty please?  Because I'll tell you right now: this recap might be a bit spotty because we opted to return to Hooters, where bad sound and other distractions mean I can't give the show my fullest attention. 
  
And you fine readers have to pay the price!  So drop a few pennies in the bucket if you happen to like the product we put out here, and I'll be sure to invest any overages into hosting PPV events at my own palatial estate, instead of being convinced that Hooters will be more fun.

But half-assedness of the experience aside, I surely did get a 

pretty good grasp on the Survivor Series PPV.  It started strong.  It even included a Very Watchable JBL Match.  But it ended in a way that I'm not sure I can cotton to. And no: not ONLY because Randy Orton stood alone as the Sole Survivor of his team (though that never really helps matters, either), but because the main event seemed to come up a good 10-15 minutes short and featured countless missed opportunities for added action and added drama.

Lacking any real signature moments, Survivor Series wound up being almost exactly what it promised to be: a surprisingly tepid place-holder show, given that it was a rare cross-brand event.  No titles changed hand, no major swerves or turns took place.  If I remember Survivor Series 2004 for anything in 3 months time, it'll probably just be for the way it made me feel like such a lovesick puppydog when Trish Stratus was made to bleed at the hands of that vile wench, Lita.  And really, is that what any of us wanted?

Enough disjointed rambling.  Let's get to the details!  Here are the full results of tonight's just-completed Survivor Series pay-per-view (with some additional editorial commentary tacked on in the customary red italics):

  • I'm not sure what happened on Sunday Night Heat. Before I left my house, I saw that they were hyping a tag title match between La Resistance and Hurricane/Rosey, but as is Hooters' custom, they don't show Heat, they got all the TV's locked on the PPV Countdown show, so who the hell knows? I'm guessing that there was NOT a title change, though, since the match was never mentioned that I could hear on the PPV.
     
  • Opening Video Package/Pyro/Etc. Nicely produced history package with all the highlights of Survivor Series past (including Taker's debut, the Montreal Screwjob, and a heavy dose of Austin being eliminated prior to the 1999 PPV). Then welcomes from not one, not two, but THREE commentary teams, and we're ready to kick it to the ring....
     
  • Spike Dudley retained the Cruiserweight Title in a Fatal Fourway Match.  Absolutely awesome stuff to open with. Spike powdered out first, then Chavo made sure to break him off a piece of the dastard Kidman, and at about the 2 minute mark, it was the two fan favorites, Rey and Chavo, locking up. They did a cool 45 second bit of nice chain wrestling where they didn't get even an inch of separation, and as is rare with those bits, they didn't blow anything and it all looked pretty plausible.  But Spike was lurking, and didn't let them get the Double Ovation of Mutual Respect from the fans, and launched us into another phase of the match.  Mildly chaotic, leading up to a super-sweet highspot; first, Kidman was standing on the ring apron, and Rey was standing on the top rope, and in a VERY unique variation on a standard, Rey rana'ed Kidman off the apron and to the floor.  "Holy Shit," indeed.  Chavo followed that up by plancha'ing the Rey and Kidman on the outside, as you started to sense the Trademarked WCW PPV Opener Trainwreck Spot hitting its climax.... except: when Spike decided to hit the exclamation point, he dove over the top rope, and NOBODY HOME.  The three guys scattered, and Spike ate floor.   HA!  Very nice.  There really was just too much action to call, here, definitely a step up from anything we've seen out of the cruisers in a while.  There was a triple-stack superplex spot.  There were countless near falls and false finishes, and in the end, it went something like this: Chavo seemed to have things won with a Gorybomb on Spike, but Kidman broke that up by hitting Chavo with a springboard legdrop. So Rey swooped in and took Kidman out over the top rope, but powdered out himself in the process, and Spike managed to crawl over to Chavo, drape an arm over him, and got the fortuitous pinfall win.  Felt like right around 10 minutes.  [Excellent opener; tons of action, some of it quite innovative. And by the end, it had plenty of sizzle, and the crowd was way into it, and as a result, way pissed when Spike stole the win.  Outstanding.]
     
  • Backstage: Heyman leaves Heidenreich, who goes wandering off, and ends up face to face with Snitsky. Per the audio craptacularity of Hooters, I don't really get a whole lot out of this, except that Snitsky says he likes Heidenreich's poetry. That makes one of you.  And then they said some more stuff, and for the life of me, I was terrified they were gonna start making out.  I mean, I generally try to ignore the homoerotic overtones of pro wrestling, but this IS a guy who faux-sodomized Michael Cole, so what the hell else am I supposed to think?
     
  • Shelton Benjamin beat Christian to retain the InterContinental Title.  Christian sounded like he had new music, which I thought boded well for his chances here....  they start out on the mat, and that's basically Shelton's domain, so he controls the opening minutes, which sends Christian into the Tried and True Heel Shtick of going for rope breaks and basically trying to avoid locking up.  Christian tried to go outside and use his Problem Solver, the Lovely Miss Tomko to create a distraction, but Shelton was far too wise to fall for that, and maintained the advantage. But once back in the ring, Shelton DID fall prey to the distraction, and instead of going after Christian, he decided to take a potshot at Tomko, which was all the opening Christain needed to sneak in from behind.  XTian held on for a bit, settling on a chinlock variation eventually, and out of that Shelton powered up and started his comeback... however, he was short-circuited when he went for the Stinger Splash, but XTian dodged him.  From there, we got a really cool final 3 mintues or so of back-and-forth action and near falls.  Shelton got near falls after failed interference from Tomko resulted in Shelton getting to kick the IC belt into XTian's face, and on a big High Cross Body.  XTian got near falls after a DDT and after a Big Boot from Tomko (while the ref was getting the IC belt out of the ring).  When the Big Boot wasn't enough, Tomko tried getting up into the ring again, but Shelton kicked him down, and then in a quick bit of double-reversey goodness, Shelton countered an Unprettier attempt, and landed his T-Bone Powerslam for the pinfall win.  Somewhere in the 12-15 minute range.  [And Survivor Series goes 2-for-2 with this one.  Very nicely constructed match, it never dragged, and for the final few minutes, very hot.  I'm not so sure he couldn't have afforded to drop the title to Christian here, but as the latest chapter in building up Shelton, I gotta call this a success.]
     
  • Backstage: another Cross Brand Interlude, and Kurt Angle comes up to Edge. And AGAIN I am dicked over by having to watch this show at Hooters, and don't really catch the exchange, which I'm sure gold, given these two and their past. Angle finally walks away from Edge, and is cornered by Eugene, who gets a big pop.  The vibe I got was that Eugene was doing his idiot savant act, running down Kurt's accomplishments, and Kurt was basically sitting there taking it, until Eugene got to his final Angle Career Accolade, which was "You Suck."  Accompanied by a sing-songy little dance that the crowd ate up.  Funny.
     
     
  • A WrestleMania Rebound: and with 5 months to go, the hype beginulates!  This week, it's Steve Austin pinning Shawn Michaels (with Mike Tyson in the background).  One of my friends notes, "I can't believe that was 7 years ago already." And I confided that having them constantly referring to this being the "18th annual" Survivor Series wasn't doing a whole lot for my spirits and sense of youthful vigor.
     
  • Team Eddie beat Team Angle when Eddie Guerrero, Big Show, and John Cena all survived.  Angle's team entered all together to Kurt's music (sorry Carlito), but all of Eddie's team got solo entrances, further underscoring that ONE team was loaded with legit superstars, and the other was Kurt Angle and a few chumps.  Although it's "Team Eddie," Cena got the last entrance, and came out to a huge pop.  He immediately went after Carlito, but Jesus kept himself in the way.  So as Carlito tried to fashion an escape, Cena and Jesus kept on brawling, not far behind.  The brawl goes all the way to the back, where Carlito and Jesus eventually get into a car and drive away, rather than face the enraged Cena.  Cena heads back to the ring, where apparently, the match has yet to commence.  So before it even gets started, the match is now a handicapped affair.  
     
    The faces take advantage of the 4-on-3 for a bit, but then Eddie tags in, and ends up as a nominal babyface in peril for a bit (including an ever-popular chinlock by Jindrak).  Eddie eventually fires up, and makes a lukewarm tag to Rob Van Dam. [Hilarious aside: I'm pretty sure that if you are in a reasonable large city, you have an AlternaRock Radio Station, and that it has an "X" in it, and that all these retarded excuses for modern rock radio are owned by the same corporate entity. Here in Dayton, it's 103.9 "THE X," and they are one of the big sponsors for Tuesday's SD! TV taping here in town. One of my friends was -- for reasons he could not fully explain since I know he's got a CD player in his van -- listening to "THE X" on his way to Hooters and said that the DJ was promoting an appearance by "BOB Van Dam" on their morning show tomorrow.  He never corrected himself, nor was he corrected by anybody else.  So of course, our table spent the night chanting for "BVD," which probably isn't as funny as we thought it was, but what the hell, I gotta wring some comedy out of the Hooters experience where I can!]  At the same time BVD tagged in, so did Kurt Angle for the heels, and we got ourselves a mild House Afire segment for Bob; in the chaos, BVD wound up hitting a Five Star on Jindrak though he might have been aiming for Angle. Things got even sloppier when Angle took advantage of the mis-targeted Five Star, and rolled BVD up near the ropes.  I think BOTH men were in the ropes and Kurt had a handful of tights AND the ref was in position to see all of this, but I guess he still counted three.  I dunno.  Looked AWFUL, and it was hard to make out if Tazz was able to come up with some rational justification for why BVD was eliminated.  Angle rolls outside and does some broad gesturing to indicate "Now it's 3-on-3 bitches," but as he does, Eddie Guerrero sneaks up on Jindrak (remember, just Five Starred), and rolls him up for a quick elimination.  Back to a 3-on-2 edge for the faces.
     
    VERY shortly there after, Big Show got in the ring with Luther, hit a chokeslam, and now it's 3-on-1.  Kurt decides he's just gonna walk out on the match, rather than take his whupping, but BVD cuts him off at the top of the entrance aisle.  Kurt begs off of Bob, and backs down the aisle again, bumping into Big Show (points to Angle for his "Ah, shit" take when he realized who was behind him).  Show tossed Angle into the ring, where Cena was waiting with an F-U, Eddie followed up with a Frog Splash, and then Show finished up with a chokeslam.   Show pins Angle to end a very one-sided and decisive 10-12 minute match.  [When they didn't have Cena counted out for his brawl with Carlito, it was pretty much a foregone conclusion of a match...  but still, sloppiness of the RVD elimination aside, it was harmless fun getting there, I guess.]
     
  • Backstage: Coach is interviewing Maven, and basically hits him with a question The Rick himself is quite curious about.  Namely, "Maven, what the hell are you doing in this main event? You got no business in this match."  I tell those around me to ZIP IT cuz this is EXACTLY what I was hoping for, as Maven launches into some indignation, but is then back-attacked by Snitsky.  The whomping is quite one-sided, and Maven is left in a pool of his own blood, while Snitsky retreats, confident he's just taken Maven out of the main event.  But has he put Tajiri into it?  You better believe The Rick was SHOVING it in any face I could when they did this angle~!
     
  • The Undertaker beat Jon Heidenreich.  I cannot tell a lie: this did not suck.  But at about 18 minutes long, it was just RIDICULOUSLY bloated.  And although it brushed right up against Average, the fact that the lack of crowd interest was readily apparent just robs this match of any sizzle it could have had.  Right out of the gate, they ring the bell and try to do that 90 Second Staredown of Ultimate Intensity, during which time, the crowd is SUPPOSED to get all fired up, and when the first punches are thrown, it's supposed to blow the roof of the joint.  No noise for the staredown that I could detect, and then they commenced the fisticuffsmanship, no pop for that, either.  The crowd, much like The Me, apparently wanted nothing more than for this to be over.  I was fully expecting a squash, but Taker's offense was methodical to open, and all of a sudden I could sense we were settling in for the long haul.  Heidenreich took control after lowblowing Taker on an attempted Old School.  Heidenreich in command for about 4 minutes.  Comeback by Taker.  It felt like a PERFECT chance to end the match, but I actually sat there and announced to the table, "Relax, this match cannot end until Taker does a Zombie Sit Up to signal End Game," not WANTING to be right, but knowing I was.  Heidenreich kept coming back, and also managed to get a rope break to avoid being pinned following a Last Ride Powerbomb.  Whee, and so it continues.  Heidenreich actually got ANOTHER comeback after the powerbomb, and used it to try a Sleephold.  Taker back-suplexed out of that, but both men were down after their "grueling war."  Ref hits the double count, and SWEET MERCIFUL CHRIST, there's the Zombie Sit-Up at 9, and we enter end game.  Both me up, trade fists, Taker gets the advantage, hits the chokeslam, decides that's not enough for Heidenreich, picks him up again, hits the Tombstone piledriver and NOW the match is over.  [I'm not joking, this was closer to 20 minutes than it was to 10, which is just unfathomable; at no point did the crowd even really seem into it, either. They tried all manner of tricks to make it feel like a titanic struggle, including the staredown spot to start, and having Heyman attempt to induce rhythmic clapping by pounding on the mat, but the crowd was having none of it.  To their credit, Taker and Heidenreich seemed to hit pretty much everything they tried, which is a step in the right direction for Heidenreich, but there just wasn't enough meat here to justify the 18 minutes or whatever this was.  Making me feel even worse: after the match, instead of just burying Heidenreich so we could move Heyman into a more useful role managing somebody who might not suck, Taker kept doing these odd Double Takes of Respect in Heidenreich's direction.  Please, god, no: let Tazz choke out Heidenreich this week, and then let's be done, OK?]
     
  • Backstage: Diva Search Loser has an interview with Eric Bischoff, and I think I got the basic gist of it, which was, "Screw you, The Rick, that was just a massive cock tease before, and now you're left there sporting half-wood at the thought of Tajiri in the main event, but it's not gonna happen, JERK!"...  something about Bischoff not wanting to OK a replacement for Maven in the main event because if he did, it'd create too many headaches for him, and all he really wants to do is get his vacation started....  DAMMIT!  Believe you me, I had it shoved back in my face at this point.
     
  • Trish Stratus beat Lita by Disqualification to retain the Women's Title.  There was no match.  Lita stormed to the ring, attacked Trish, and took the fight to the outside, where she tried to use a steel chair, but the ref pulled that one away from her.  But while he did, Lita just grabbed another chair and used THAT one to paste Trish.  Repeatedly.  The ref calls for the DQ about 1 minute into the "match."  And dammit, as soon as Trish gets up, I can tell there's blood in her hair, and even though it's not SUPPOSED to, my Latent Trish Sympathy (dormant since she turned heel and has pretty much spent the last 8 months kicking ass instead of having her pretty ass kicked) returns with a vengeance.  And again, I know what it must feel like to be a Teenaged Girl with Comically Poor Taste in Boyz Watching Jeff Hardy Get His Delicate Little Ass Kicked.  As the crowd, both live and at Hooters, got behind Lita and her UNPROVOKED and UNJUSTIFIABLE cheating and ultraviolence, I am honestly in disbelief. Lita is a dumb-ass drama queen; all Trish ever did was make a few fat jokes; she DOESN'T DESERVE THIS.  And you idiot fans are CHEERING FOR IT.  DAMN YOU ALL TO HELL!  Anyway, Trish appeared to be only bleeding from the nose, so I guess we can at least chalk that up to some kind of honest mistake, and NOT to Lita swinging a reckless chair, or anything.  Even though Trish is bleeding and clearly in need of immediate medical attention (or at least the comforting embrace of a sympathetic Internet Jack-Off), Lita just HAS to go back and attack again, sending Trish face-first into the steel ringsteps in one of her patented bumps that makes me think wrestling is a little too real.  Dammit, I'm such a puss.  Trish is a bloody mess whose worst crime is possessing a sense of humor, Lita is a psychotic bitch, but the fans roar the latter's name as she finally leaves the scene.  No love for Trish as she is assisted to the back.  [Well, the match is a big fat nothing, but the angle? Well, it seemed to have its desired effect. People were way into Lita. It had as strong, if in reverse, effect on me, too.  So yay for storytelling!  I'm actually not entirely convinced that the bloody nose wasn't just part of the act, since it sure will conveniently play into the "Kiss of Death" gimmick, but it doesn't matter; as I was watching, I didn't stop for a second to be all cynical like that.]
     

  • Backstage: Team Eddie is celebrating, when GM Teddy Long saunters in.  He wants a word with John Cena.  From the sounds of things, Cena will get a shot at Carlito's US Title this week on SD!, LIVE, ON TAPE, from RIGHT HERE, in DAYTON, OH!  Sounded like an addendum was tossed in, though, where Long made it clear that if Carlito doesn't show up, or if he tries to escape and get counted out like at the PPV, he'll strip Carlito of the title.  Which is probably not insignificant, given his injury status...
     

  • John Bradshaw Layfield beat Booker T to retain the WWE Title. Very basic, but essentially sound opening minutes of back and forth punchy-kicky stuff.  It's too bad JR wasn't calling this one, because most of the way, it pretty much struck me as the Textbook Slobberknocker; not necessarily pretty, but intense enough to be watchable.  After that opening phase of the match, JBL bailed outside, and looked like he was setting up for a spot on the SD! Announce Table.  But Booker tripped him up, and seemed to regain the edge.  But after Booker tossed JBL back into the ring, Orlando Jordan made his presence felt, attacking Booker while the ref checked on the champ.  Basic offense for the next few minutes from JBL; in a nice bit of variation, he did NOT use the Main Event Side Headlock, but instead tried a Cobra Clutch (or, given JBL's current gimmick, might it be better to call it a "Million Dollar Dream"?).  Booker tried to fire up out of that hold, but although he broke it, JBL stayed on offense for another minute or so.  The tide only changed when JBL decided (you'll have to ask him why, since his Top Rope Legitimacy is even lower than Flair's, I think) to go up top; Booker caught him with a superplex.  We're about 10 minutes in at this point, and the pace really picks up for End Game.  Some good near falls, a lot of OJ having to get involved to prevent Booker from winning.  And then finally: a major ref bump.  Jordan tried to take advantage of the ref going down, but WWE Diva Josh Mathews ran out to the ring to even the odds.  Josh took out Jordan, but was then destroyed by a JBL clothesline.  But the distraction from Mathews was enough to allow Booker to recover; he hit a series of moves on JBL, culminating in the Axe Kick.  Booker made the cover, and the crowd chanted to Three, but the crowd ain't a ref.  But wait~! "Li'l Naitch," Charles Robinson *is* a ref, and he's running down to make the count.  One.  Two.... and that's when Orlando Jordan earns his paycheck: he yanks the substitute referee out of the ring, and I guess Robinson WOULD have been authorized to make a three-count, but is NOT authorized to call for a DQ.  Or something.  I'm sorry, but sometimes, I think too hard about this stuff and ruin the fun for those around me, who are (justifiably) trying to enjoy a damned wrestling show.  Curse my Big Brain.  With Robinson dispatched, Jordan tried to go to Phase Two of his plan, which was to grab the WWE Title belt, and use it to wax Booker... but Booker saw it coming, and instead cut OJ off, and in fact, nailed him with the Book End.  But Jordan dropped the title in a rather convenient spot: right where the now-recovering JBL could grab it.  So JBL picked up the belt, and when Booker turned around, he ate faux-gold!  JBL tossed the belt out of the ring, the original ref FINALLY came to his senses, JBL draped an arm over Booker, and three seconds later, Bradshaw is your winner.  [Probably right around 15 minutes, and other than his quality cage match against Eddie, this is probably the closest JBL has come to putting on a match that seemed like it deserved to be in the second half of a PPV.  Very basic, but also kinda fun. Nicely constructed and dramatic, and it should set us up for a rematch at Armageddon in Atlanta in 3 weeks, and THERE we should have just as much sizzle, and should also get our title change, to boot. No real complaints from me on this one.]
     
  • Speaking of Armageddon in Atlanta: at some point after that match, they flashed a graphic up on the screen about a new Creed album, while what I assume is their kick-ass, not-even-remotely-shitty new single played in the background.  Wow, and to think I shed tears cuz I didn't even think they existed anymore... but I guess this means Creed is supplying the Official Theme Song for Armageddon? And if so, I think I know why: I have it on good authority that Atlanta's Own Erin Anderson harbors a debilitating crush on that Dreamy Scott Stapp, and she singlehandedly campaigned with WWE so that her hometown and Creed would be forever intertwined the same way she knows that she and Scott will be some day.
     
  • Also during this break: WWE is going back to Iraq this holiday season.  Whoa.  I mean, it was really cool last year and all, but are they fucking nuts?!?  Safely in the "green zone" or not, I'd be nervous as hell about performing over that at this point....
     
  • Backstage: HHH, Batista, and Ric Flair have a final confab. And again, I can't make out the exact nuance of the whole thing, but I think it's, "Thank god you guys are on my side, cuz I don't really trust Edge and Snitsky" from HHH.  Then he leaves, and Batista says something to Ric Flair, which Flair reacted oddly to.  Probably a cool little bit of non-anviliciousness, but I can't provide more details, sorry....
     
  • Team Canadian Chrisses beat Team HHH when Randy Orton was the Sole Survivor.  No Maven, so in the counterpoint to the earlier elimination match, we start 4-on-3.  Benoit and Edge got us off to an intense start, reprising their goodness from last Monday.  The faces had nominal control of the match as all 7 guys cycled into the match, but that ended once Batista got in for the heels.  He secured the advantage for his team, and they wound up basically focusing on Orton for about 5 minutes.  All four guys got in and worked Orton over; the only upside for you regarding the auditory nightmare that is Hooters is that I can't really get a handle on the crowd noise and whether or not Orton was over with the live fans (he did, sadly, seem to be pretty over with the "Dayton I" Hooters' franchise crowd, and once again, I'm confident that I'm WAY to hep a cat to be living in this jerk-water berg if they are impressed with Young Randall).  About 8 minutes in, Orton hits the tag to Benoit, who comes in and is tearing shit up!  I think there were at least a half-dozen Germans portioned out to the heels, and here, it sure seemed to me that the fans were way into it.  They're even MORE into it for a sweet-ass spot (a personal favorite of mine, actually) in which Benoit SNAP suplexed Edge onto HHH.  Yeah.  So of course, once Benoit (the most talented man in the ring) tags in, what do you do?  You eliminate him with a grand total of 2 minutes of ring time to his credit; I shit you not.  In the Suplex Madness and general chaos, Benoit is in the ring with Edge as the legal man...  but with the ref distracted, HHH sneaks in and hits Benoit with a Pedigree, Edge makes the cover, and Benoit is gone.  Dammit.  Evolution leads 4-to-2 now.
     
    We slow things down a bit for just a moment, long enough for a little interlude in which Batista and Snitksy went nose-to-nose to remind us that the heels don't get along. But then they put petty differences aside and decided to use their numbers-advantage to take control over the match. But Chris Jericho is not to be trifled with! He quickly staged his own rally, and was about to nail (I forget who) with the Lionsault... but Flair got up on the apron and shoved Jericho off the ropes when he tried to springboard off.  The ref spotted it, though, and ejected Flair.  Biggest pop of the match so far is for Flair's indignant exit!  Me, I'm noting that that's one HHH Ally lost, a possible important storyline point.  It becomes an even BIGGER storyline point about 60 seconds later, when Orton and Jericho started clicking as a team and managed to keep the ref distracted long enough for Orton to hit Batista with the World Title belt; Jericho followed up with his Ghetto Blaster (running enzuigiri, whatever you want to call it), and eliminated Batista.  But Batista no likey being eliminating by a tiny little man like Jericho; so bad sport that he is, he gets a running start, nails Jericho with the K.O.-thesline, and only THEN leaves the ring.  We APPEAR to be at a 3-on-2 advantage for the heels, but interestingly, HHH is without any true allies; he's out there with two guys who pretty much hate him as much as the other team does.  Could be VERY intriguing, I point out, as my bad habit for supplying Alternate Commentary when I'm lucky enough to be watching wrestling with a crowd is in full effect here.
     
    But wait!  It's not 3-on-2 at all!  The first time Snitsky tags into the match after Batista's elimination, we hear the Utter Apathy of the crowd as Maven storms to the ring!  The fans in Cleveland are literally SITTING ON THEIR HANDS as Jericho makes a mad leap for his corner, and tags in the Heroic Maven!  You can cut the disinterest with a knife as Maven comes in and tries to take the fight to Snitsky!  And though I commend the attempt to FINALLY (three weeks too late) give Maven a hook and a reason for being involved in the main event with the earlier angle with Snitsky, it just didn't work; I didn't buy it, fans didn't buy it, and I'm not saying Tajiri was the solution, but he sure as hell wouldn't have been any worse.  For all Maven's fire, he really doesn't seem to be doing a whole lot of damag.....  HOLY SHIT, I take that back!  Snitksy has just bailed out of the ring, and I didn't THINK he took anything besides a couple of right hands from Maven, but SOMEthing tore the shit out of his face.  There is a giant-looking gash above his left eye, just really deep-looking, like there's a significant flap of skin missing.  Maven: I take it back buddy, I'm not sure how, but you landed the sickest offense of the night, it looks like!  Snitsky, like I said, had bailed out, seeming more annoyed by Maven than genuinely hurt; he grabbed a steel chair, he got in the ring, and he plastered Maven with it.  The ref DQ'ed Snitsky instantly, but Snitsky was not done.  He also used the chair to KO Orton and Jericho, figuring he could get any MORE disqualified.  Crazy as a loon, that Snitsky, but he showed some savvy on that one!  Orton and Jericho both down, Maven is legal in the ring, so HHH hits him with an unnecessary Pedigree.  Maven joins Snitsky in heading to the back, and we're 2-on-2, now.
     
    Except really, it's not even at all.  HHH and Edge are chuckling with glee at the prospects, as they hoist Jericho's limp carcass into the ring.  There was about 90 seconds of action, including a BRIEF rally for Jericho in which he escaped a Pedigree... but he at a Spear from Edge, and was pinned.  Two-on-one edge for the heels now, and for their past troubles, they seem on the same page now as they wear matchign Shit Eating Grins as Orton drags his ass into the ring for a beating.  HHH and Edge generally work well together as they dissect Orton. But they can't put him away.  So after about 3 minutes, they decide to just cheat; in the double-teaming, Orton manages to dodge a Spear attempt by Edge, sending Edge crashing into HHH; Orton, of course, immediately takes advantage by RKO'ing Edge, and eliminating him.  We're down to just Orton vs. HHH, and for all the possible intrigue of HHH and his two insubordinate teammates that I'd sensed just 10 minutes ago, we sure seem to be heading into dangerous territory, now.  I was seeing giant yellow "DANGER: Falling Anvils, Next 10 Minutes" signs everywhere, at least....

    Orton and HHH don't even need 10 minutes, though.  Although Hunter quickly regained the advantage after Edge's departure (using a Greco-Roman Sac Punch, as I called it much to the mortification of one of the Hooters Girls who had taken a load off at our table and had an unhealthy fixation on Pretty Pretty Randall Orton, to expertly block an RKO attempt).  But I swear, not more than 30 seconds later, HHH was just non-chalantly going for a Pedigree, and Orton recovered, hit an RKO out of nowhere, and won the match.  Just like that.  Play Orton's Music one more time, and we close out with about 2 minutes of him posing and preening.  Yippee?  
     
    [Look, OK, so I don't much like what WWE's doing with Orton; there are myriad other, cooler, smarter, cleverer ways to get to where WWE wants to go with Orton, but this is just another bludgeoning-the-audience-over-the-head moment... whee: Orton can pin HHH, but boo, he's not allowed to get a title shot at HHH!  After the last few weeks got me thinking that WWE had turned over a new leaf, creatively-speaking, it's dumb crap like this that convinces me there is no better idea circulating Titan Tower other than "Orton will win the Royal Rumble to get his title shot."  I fricking HATE that sense.  I, in fact, did not like a whole lot about this match, much to my own immense surprise.  Felt like it clocked in at about 20 minutes, even, which might be OK, except for the fact that it wrapped up before 10:40 eastern time.  You have probably the most talented in-ring worker in the business limited to two minutes?  And you cut the show off 10-15 minutes early? AFTER giving Heidenreich 20 minutes?  It's not so much that this match was weak as that I could tell, even in real time, that it was missing opportunities left and right.  Shorting Benoit -- and also Jericho -- on ring time is just the start. Going for a finish in which Orton wins just so you can keep shoving him down our throats, instead of taking even ONE GODDAMNED MINUTE to play up the potential drama of HHH being left out there without Batista and Flair is another huge one that I couldn't believe that they passed on.  And the ultra-time compression of the last eliminations drove it all home.  You want me to buy for even ONE SECOND that Orton deserves this push?  Then how about you do something compelling with the final minutes of the match; instead, from the time it got down to 2-on-1 against Orton to the finish was less than 3 minutes.  "RKO out of nowhere" is rapidly becoming my least favorite phrase to have to type, although it fits in perfectly with a guy who's push has been so lazily rooted in "destiny." No need to tell a story with the match, no need to have Orton fight the good fight and try to win over the fans even though you still have 15 minutes of PPV time available to you!  Just RKO out of nowhere!  Because it's destiny!  Not talent!  Not wit!  Not strategy!  Not likeability!  It's DESTINY, the whored-up step-sister of Dumb Luck.  Jesus Christ, I really don't like having to get on here and type up anti-Orton drivel, but they make it so fucking easy.  What a lazy, anti-climactic note to end a PPV that started so surprisingly hot....]

Again, like Taboo Tuesday, I'm not entirely sure if I'm thinking totally clearly with the "big picture" in mind.  I'm a firm believer in a main event and the climax of a show being weighted disproportionately in my Final Analysis.  And right now, I really didn't like the final 5 minutes of so of Survivor Series, and as good as it was in other spots (I even liked a JBL match, dammit!), my mOOd is not positive as I contemplate that finale.

So maybe tune in tomorrow to OO for a more balanced critical analysis?  Yeah, let's just do that.....

E-MAIL RICK
BROWSE THE RAW RECAP ARCHIVES


  
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