ECW Home Video
1 hour, 40 minutes
Taped 9/16/95 at the ECW Arena in Philadelphia, PA
1) Bull Pain pinned The Broad Street Bully at 8:13.
2) D.W. & Dudley Dudley (w/ Chubby & Big Dick & Sign Guy Dudley) squashed Donn E. Allen & Chad Austin at 4:48.
3) Hack Myers beat J.T. Smith via countout. 4:58 aired from what was a 10-minute match.
4) Jason & The Eliminators beat Taz & The Steiners.
5) The Pitbulls beat Raven & Stevie Richards (w/ Beulah) to win the ECW Tag Title in a 2/3 falls double-dog-collar match.
This was the match that saw months of angles beautifully come to a head. The bout started with Raven and Pitbull #2, as they did an angle where Richards ditched the match. Pitbull #1 went to the back and dragged “The King Of Swing” out into the ring. In a quickie, Raven pinned PB2 at 2:10 after piledriving him through a table (#4) in one of the best-looking table spots you’ll ever see. PB2 evened it up by pinning Richards at 4:19 after a superbomb through another table (#5) in one of the OTHER best-looking table spots you’ll ever see. It was almost like they wanted to get the first two falls out of the way so everything could explode in the decider.
The Dudleys (disciples of Raven) ran-in and attacked the Pits. The Duds helped R&R superbomb the Pits. In a convoluted follow-up, the Pits no-sold their own finisher (huh?) and gave all the heels a contrived-as-hell-looking double-double-DDT. The Pits superbombed the Duds, which was kinda dumb to me. If the Pits are your new champs, why have them decimate their first logical challengers before they even win the damn belts in the first place?
The Pits superbombed Raven for a nearfall, but they came up just shy of the table, and Rave’s skull clipped the table’s edge in a scary-looking visual. Raven smothered PB2 with an ether-soaked rag. Joey fired off his classic “Take that crap to Smoky Mountain” line. Raven tried to put PB2 through double-decker tables at ringside, but the top table wouldn’t cooperate (or break). On the second try, Raven put PB2 through the bottom table (#6), salvaging the spot as best as could be expected. PB1 crotched Richards and suplex-slammed him through another table (#7). Francine attacked Beulah for the catfight. Raven DDT’ed Francine.
With PB2 out of the match, Tommy Dreamer ran-in and chained himself to Raven, continuing their feud. Dreamer kneedropped Raven’s nest and gave him a DDT for the clean pin (first time TD ever pinned Raven in the Bingo Hall). I know what you’re thinking. As great as their feud was, it’s not terribly heroic for your fresh-as-a-daisy babyface to run-in out of nowhere and pin his archrival. That was the whole point. It was a tease. Pennsylvania State Athletic Commission referee Bill Alfonso (w/ sometimes-bodyguard Big Dick Dudley) ran-in and disallowed TD’s pin. Fonzie was tremendous as the uberheel referee. Fonzie tried to bring order to the chaos, with the gimmick that the chokeslam was banned, and if any wrestler laid a hand on him, he’d shut down the promotion.
“Extreme Commissioner” Todd Gordon ran-in for this angle-within-a-match and argued with Fonzie. Fonzie shoved Todd, prompting TD to leap to Todd’s defense. Well, he did literally leap up when Big Dick chokeslammed him. Fonzie posthumously reinstated the chokeslam for “tonight only.” So naturally, this opened the door for 911 to run-in and do what does best. When 911 chokeslammed Fonzie, reports at the time said it was the loudest pop in the history of the ECW Arena (!!).
After that, they went straight to the finish as PB2 ran-in to rejoin the match. 911 and TD helped stack Richards on Raven’s shoulders for a “super-duper-bomb.” It wasn’t so much a “bomb” as it was a “plop,” but still, there was only so much they could do to top themselves at this point. The Pits double-pinned R&R as Todd and TD counted the fall. The place erupted.
This was ECW at its finest. Simply put, this was the best-booked match I’ve ever seen and, IMO, the single most definitive ECW match ever. If there was any doubt about ECW’s future after the Benoit/Guerrero/Malenko “acquisition,” this match showed that ECW was still alive and well. A must-see. (FRITZ)
6) Rey Misterio Jr. pinned Psicosis at 10:18.
Okay, we’re finally backstage in the thick of things. Jack and Johnny were having a shouting match while Rocco Rock stood there looking goofy. A pull-apart ensued. As Joey did his best Charlie Minn impersonation, he noticed Steve Austin was standing above him in a ripped yellow tank top. Austin cut a frenetic promo in full Hogan style, vowing that “Steve-a-mania” would run wild. The real punchline is that he was 100% right. When Austin broke out as WWF World champion in 1998, he became the single highest-grossing wrestler of all freakin’ time.
7) Mikey Whipwreck & The Public Enemy beat ECW World champion The Sandman (w/ Woman) & ECW TV champion Too Cold Scorpio (replacing Mustafa Saied) & New Jack in a “Gangsta’s Paradise” cage match with weapons at 15:08.
Mikey came out with dreads in TPE gear. The back of TPE’s jerseys advertised “The Mac Daddies Of Violence,” while Mikey’s said “Help Me…Not.” Woulda been funnier had they just left it at “Help Me.” This was during the classic ECW angle where Mikey asked TPE to help him become a scumbag so he would be appropriately equipped to beat Sandman at his own game. During their intro, Mikey hugged ring announcer Bob Artese, and in doing so, mugged him, taking his wallet and watch. TPE were proud of their protégé and a hoodie group hug ensued.
As the heels came out, Joey put over the significance of the World champ and TV champ being on the same team. ECW always – and I mean ALWAYS – put over their gold like it was well, gold. Scorp was a ringer for Mustafa Saied, who was the Neidhart/Jannetty/Stevie Ray of the Gangstas tag team. So this was a “Gangsta’s Paradise” match at an event called “Gangsta’s Paradise,” yet only one Gangsta was in the main event. Fair’s fair, if WCW had pulled something like this, ECW would have been all over them for it. Then again, had WCW pulled something like this, it would have been infinitely better than 90% of the crap they DID pull on PPV. (45 days after this event, the Giant fell off the roof of Cobo Hall, but returned to help the Yeti make a manwich out of Hulk Hogan with their “double bearhug” at Halloween Havoc 95, but I digress.)
New Jack worked the mic as only he can, followed by Rocco calling Woman a “raggedy-ass ho.” Actually, she looked pretty damn good tonight. Anyway, this was a wild brawl as you’d expect. Woman periodically slid Sandman’s Singapore cane into the cage to jab at Sandy’s opponents. Yeah, that wasn’t suggestive or anything. Johnny and Jack both juiced, and left the cage to do the Bingo Hall Brawl. They wound up fighting by the famed Eagle’s Nest (where Joey broadcasted from). Back in the ring, Mikey hit a nice flying hurracanrana off the top onto Sandy, who pretty much no-sold and suplexed a table onto Mikey, Foley-style. Scorp was handing out superkicks like GHB at a wrestler’s daughter’s slumber party. Rocco accosted Sandy with a frying pan.
Spot of the match saw Scorp and Rocco struggle on the top of the cage, ultimately falling together through three tables that were stacked in a pyramid. One table only broke off at the corner, so Rocco obligingly dropkicked Sandy, who sent himself through it to complete the matching set (#8-10). TPE double-suplexed Sandy for the old “Rockerplex” spot as Mikey came off the top with a crossbody to complete the move. False finish saw Mikey gave Sandy a Frankenmikey from the top of the cage while Sandy was standing on the top turnbuckle for a nearfall. Mikey sold frustration for a bit, then came off the top of the cage with a splash onto Sandy for the pin. Jimmy Snuka it wasn’t, but Joey still excitedly put over the fact that Mikey just pinned the champ.
After the match, Sandman managed to lock himself in the cage with Mikey. Woman passed him the cane and Mikey was again his redheaded stepchild for the night. Sandy braced his cane in one of the corners, then leapt off the cane to drop a leg on Mikey. TPE finally chased off Sandy. Johnny put over Mikey by saying “Heyyyyy, champ,” accurately suggesting Mikey would be the next champ. The “house party” celebration started, but the heels came back to poop the party. Scorp climbed the cage, so Mikey suplexed him into the ring. Next thing you know, Mikey was caning Sandy at ringside. When Scorp jumped out of the cage, he crashed into one of the security guys and instinctively legit punched him, thinking a fan hopped the rail. Ah well, at least he still has a big dong (according to Mick Foley). Joey signed off as the carnage made its way down the aisle. As far as ECW-style garbage matches went, this one was entertaining, if a little clustershmazzy. (David)
Final number of broken tables = 10
Overall over-analysis: Four forgettable matches, one annoying butcher job (the Steiners six-man), and two full-blown “must-see” classics. Sure, losing Benoit/Guerrero/Malenko hurt, but this show was proof positive that Paul would always have something up his sleeve to get fans on their feet chanting their three favorite letters. For that reason alone, this show stands tall as one of the most important nights in ECW’s all-too-brief history.
As far as finding a copy, good luck. ECW releases in good quality are a bitch to hunt down, but this one is definitely worth the effort. Come on, where else can you see a show with New Jack, Rey Jr., The Eliminators, Raven, Mikey Whipwreck, The Steiners, Psicosis, Sandman, Taz, and Steve Austin doing a Hogan spoof?
This Observer’s Thumb……………………is up.
THE TWF "MENTAL WELLNESS TEST!"
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