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Monday, 6 October 2008

No Mercy Live Notes

Wilkommen, Bienvenue and Ahoy Hoy to my No Mercy coverage

01.02am Bizarre opening to the show. A video package punctuated by black and white footage of a perfect family, interspersed with hype for the show. I didn’t understand that.

And I don’t even have a teacher to explain to me. No Matt Striker tonight, for some reason which is not explained. ECW up first.

Is Tony Atlas singing along to Mark Henry’s theme tune? Big pop for Matthew Hardy.

King drops a mention that he was in Mark Henry’s first match. So he was. Amazing piece of continuity by King, who is apparently inspired by sitting in Striker’s chair.

Todd drops the fact that some magazine named Henry as the second man to ever walk the face of the earth. He doesn’t mention number one, so I figure it is either Bill Kazmeier, Tarzan, or Popeye.

Not Dino Bravo.

I’ve just saved my document, and the title Nomercylive.doc is apparently taken. I guess this is a year since I started doing live blogs then.

Match is quite boring, by the way.

Not too bad I suppose. They kept it short enough, it wasn’t too painless, and had a satisfying opening for the crowd with Matt Hardy retaining. If you pretend there is no brand split, Matt would have been a perfect IC title contender, when it used to be the workers title.

Even Eve Torres, fresh from scoring twice at Man City (soccer joke for all you folks across the pond) tries to assist Triple H in a face-to-face interview with Jeff Hardy. When Hunter talks, she raises the mic to his mouth. When Jeff speaks, he has to bend down. He now has a weak next. Hunter’s a lock.

Diva time next, as Candice will face the increasing hot Beth Phoenix (I have big eyebrows too, Beth) in a fight we are supposed to believe is fair. Don’t they realise that when Candice dominates the first 90 seconds of the match it makes Beth look at idiot. My God we need Gail Kim.

Again, short and nothing special as you’d expect. No promo time for Santino which is a disappointment, but his involvement followed the storyline. Nice ending sequence to the match, by the way, but I’d have liked to have seen Candice go for the “Candy Wrapper” (Unprettier) more often to build the reversal which Beth ultimately pulled.

Rey v Kane next, and after Cole waffles on about Mysterio is wearing a mask with the colours of the ancient Aztec civilisation, King suggests that the Aztecs become extinct.

Well, they aren’t around anymore, but it seems a bit harsh to describe them like the Woolly Mammoth – oh no, wait he went to Japan, didn’t he? He’s Giant Bernard now.......

I spy our first Cyber Sunday rematch. Non-finish to this one as Kane, on the floor, smashes Mysterio, coming off the top rope, with a chair. Cool visual to a staccato match.

This one stopped and started. It was fairly logical, with Kane being on top and Rey only getting sporadic comebacks, but didn’t feel like anything apart from a TV match. This has not been PPV quality in the first 45 minutes.

Big missed spot, it seemed, midway through a Rey recovery, as he looked set for a springboard armdrag, but Kane didn’t co-operate. Looked like miscommunication. Rey seemed hurt at first, but recovered sufficiently for me to think that he probably isn’t injured other than being knocked about a bit.

Right, okay.

Long, wandering segment which I enjoyed, but once again gave this a TV-like feel. The crowd’s ‘boring’ chants were most unfair. The frustration of this segment was that it used seven guys, and although one is injured (Orton) they are all plenty talented enough that you miss them on the show. With the action being substandard thus far, it is a bit of a frustration.

I would suggest that surely Punk and Kofi will tackle DiBiase and Rhodes at Cyber Sunday. I’m trying to think of the stips the crowd vote on. Maybe Tornado Tag, tables match or cage, something like that. Or perhaps Team Priceless will have the three of them, and we get to vote on Kofi and CM’s partner.

Orton, meanwhile, is terrific in his new role. Cheered by the crowd on this occasion, he treads a very fine line between being heel and babyface, although in essence his personality is generally heelish. The only reason you feel confused about his alignment is because he acts heelish towards heels. Thus he gets cheered.

I would say I can’t wait until he comes back, except I’m really enjoying what he is doing right now. Kudos to all in that segment, I thought they all pulled it off well. Particulalrly MVP, who has his character perfectly off-pat.

Number one contenders match now. I’m tempted to count all the moves that are not punches, kicks or clotheslines................

Wow, that was pretty emphatic. Glad it was quick and glad it was clean. They probably realised that anything more than the 6 or 7 minutes they gave this would strain the patience of a restless crowd.

There is a lot being handed to the babyfaces so far. Jericho to retain is looking stronger.

This disappointing show goes on.

A long, long waffle from JBL ends with Cryme Tyme hijacking his Limo, and taking a bunch of Women with them. Oh, and Sarge. And you know what, I genuinely though it was a bunch of girls hired from the local strip clubs like they used to do with Godfather’s hoes until I saw Maria.

Shad and JTG were saying “Breathe in, Breathe out” presumably because some of the girls are so daft that they need instructions on how to breathe.

And what’s with Mickie James being there. Poor girl is so talented, and yet Candice is stinking up the ring with Beth and Mickie is grinning moronically along with Cryme Tyme.

Terrible show thus far.

And it gets no better. The Big Show beats down his opponent, rams their head into the turnbuckle and punches them out. Trouble is, it’s the Undertaker, and the ref calls the match off. Just a shocking lack of logic, and the second out of five matches to end in futility.

Trust me, this is not me being cranky because it is late here. I understand where they are trying to go with this show, but they should not be applauded for working around the show they have in three weeks, but instead derided for scheduling in this manner.

Taker staggers out, and here comes Triple H.

Come on Trips (and Jeff) – save the show.

Rubbish segue into a video package from JR, though, as he states “These two men have a long history” – well, yes they do, going way back to Armageddon, I believe, last year.

The clip starts at the Unforgiven Scramble. Oh dear.

Now that’s more like it.

That was an absolute belter, with a match beautifully paced and well executed, with an exciting, believable finish. It doesn’t get a lot better. I don’t typically dish out star ratings, but I’d suspect I’d give it around about a solid ****.

Interesting to see that it was Triple H winning this with a cheeky move to win, much like Hardy did to beat Triple H last year.

What this one also achieved was that rare thing of making the loser look even better than he was when he walked in. Hardy loses no credibility here whatsoever, and it will be very interesting to see where he goes next.

Triple H walks into a shirtless, gibberish speaking figure backstage.

Christ, hasn’t Lance Storm let himself go?

It’s the main event, let’s sit back and watch..........

Aaaaagh, so nearly perfect.

A cracking contest, it has to be said, but I really could have done without seeing Lance Cade insert himself into proceedings. Much like the last contest, it wouldn’t really have hurt the loser by losing clean, so I’m disappointed that they could just let it be one on one without interruption, but there you go, you can’t have everything.

It was a very, very good match, made better by the fact that we haven’t had a straight up ladder match for a while. Of course, a TLC match is much the same, but they executed this differently to, say Edge and Taker’s TLC, so it felt fresh. Some nice spots in there, and some original ones, which is quite impressive, considering this match has been done many times before.

It may well occur that only the last two matches are remembered in the Pay Per View, which would, for me, gloss over a very poor undercard, but let’s leave this PPV on a positive, and tip our collective hats to Triple H, Jeff Hardy, Chris Jericho and Shawn Michaels.

Good work all round from these four, saving this PPV from being a dud.

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