Ted Caldweller note: Due to the impending demise of GeoCities, E-Wrestling Torch is proud to repost some classic Schmucks material on our site. Enjoy!
The SCHMUCKS Rant for 360°WE Resurrection
It’s been a long time between Rants, once again loyal Schmucksters. (Do I still HAVE loyal Schmucksters? A check of my e-mail reveals at least one, so that’s something.) Todays PPV was supposed to be from the ICW… sadly it fell prey to a tragic disc-erasing-accident. As I honestly couldn’t pluck up the courage to re-do it, (Especially after the ADD-Tag match… move, tag out, one move, double tag-out, repeat for FIFTEEN MINUTES until a reviewer screams in pain!) I decided to move on to todays card. 360WE’s “Resurrection” event. My only previous experience of this fed came via their appearance on “Mystery Sports Entertainment Theatre 3K“. Let’s hope this effort doesn’t require the help of two robots to endure.
-March 30, 2003
-We are Live and Direct from Charlotte, North Carolina! Jack Roper and Nina Chung are our announcers. Nina blows her first line in spectacular fashion… This could be a fun night… or a long, long night.
-360WE’s owner, Joe Beck arrives. He brings out Ty Baron and signs control of the company over to him. Baron quickly hires Beck as Commisioner. He also shills the 360WE website, then announces a round of lay-offs. (80% of which are scheduled to compete tonight. Well, that’s elevated Bait-and-Switch to a new level.)
Dan Miles vs. Triplecrown Kid
The Kid DDT’s Miles from the bell and hits the Utopia springboard legdrop for the pin. What the fuck was that? DUD. So they’ve started with a talk-fest and a squash. Way to kick-start the new era, 360WWE.
Annuit Emporium vs Knife (Cruiserweight Title Match)
This match re-defines “Pointless”, as both men were announced by Baron as being released not five minutes ago. Knife hits a pescado before the bell and they brawl on the floor. He showboats for a while, allowing Emporium to hit a kip-up elbowshot. Emporium spears him out of the ring and hits a nice corkscrew placha off the top. He tries for an Asai moonsault, Knife avoids and hits a beautiful savaate kick as he lands. Back inside, Knife lands a springboard swanton bomb as Roper praises 360WE’s cruiserweights. Well, if your cruiserweight division is the best thing you have, firing two of them before a PPV seems a shade counter-productive to me. Knife gets flapjacked on a criss-cross. It gets 2 as Roper and Chung bicker like schoolgirls. Emporium goes up, but Triplecrown Kid makes an unecessary run-in to crotch him. He proceeds to hit a Shooting Star Press on Knife, getting a 2-count.(?) He’s now part of the match, for no readily-apparent reason. (Apart from the small fact that he’s NOT getting fired tonight… I think they gave away the shocking twist ending, Schmucksters.) The Kid powerbombs Emporium right onto Knife, then hits the Utopia on Knife for the pinfall and title. Well, if the Kids gimmick is “Screwing Up Perfectly Acceptable Matches”, he’s 2-for-2 tonight. -* for the bullshit finsh, although kudos to Knife and Emporium for their tight little mini-match. If this is the way 360WE treats two good wrestlers, they’re better off as free agents, methinks.
Jayzon Cage vs. Nick Gotti vs. Kelly Storm
This is supposedly for #1 contendership of the Brutality Title. Ty Baron arrives, however and cancels the match due to the release of Storm and Gotti. He also cancels the Eternal Title match, as JJ Skittles has no-showed. This is less of a Pay-Per-View than an impending class-action lawsuit from the paying fans.
Chino vs Alex Caine (Brutality Title Match)
Luckily, neither man here is on his way out, so we may actually get a match going here. Some god-awful editing means Caine seems to appear from nowhere to (Literally) kick-start the match. Caine demonstrates his martial arts skill by repeatedly kicking Chino in the chops. Chino bails, hitting a DDT on his return. Caine totally no-sells and whips out some nun-chukas. Chino makes a mockery of every kung-fu movie by out-punching a man armed with nun-chuks as they brawl out to the floor. He brainbusts Caine and chokes him out, Caine chops him in return. (This is called “cheap tactics” by Chung… so choking with a cable is A-OK, but chopping is heelish. 360WE’s logic seems flawed.) Caine climbs onto the ring barricade, then stands there like a moron until Chino dropkicks him into the cheap seats. They have an EXTREMELY uninteresting walk-and-brawl to Caines locker room. Caine uses some KENDO-FU, Chino uses NO-SELL POWER as they keep wandering aimlessly around the building. Back to ringside, Chino belly-to-bellies Caine over the guardrailing and chokeslams him. Superkick and Olympic slam off the top onto a chair are enough for Chino to retain. DUD One of the most uninspired and relentlessly dull brawls I’ve seen since ECW folded.
-A video tribute is shown to Pola Bare, who’s retired due to a pyrotechnics malfunction. Sounds like an angle to me.
-Indeed, post-tribute we get a guy in a polar bear costume who promises to bring back the “legend” to 360WE. Niina and Jack then pad the card with a lengthy re-cap of the insipid action so far. Wake me if anything interesting happens.
C.W Morris v. Judgement (World Title #1 Contendership Match)
The announcers try to get over Judgements “Huge” size advantage during the intros. It’s actually only 30 pounds or so, so it’s more a height advantage. Hey, being tall got Giant Gonzales over, right? Yeah, fair enough, bad comparison. Morris hits an early dropkick and continues the martial arts theme with some kicking. Geez, an episode of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” has less kicking than this event. Judgement uses his “size” advantage to no-sell and powerslam Morris. Choking and punching follow (He IS Giant Gonzales!) before Morris bleeds hardway from a dropkick. On the floor Judgement sends Morris into the stairs and hits a dropkick from the apron. Judgement hits a belly-to-belly and continues to toss Morris arounbd like a ragdoll. Morris finally DDT’s Judgement and dispenses with all that pointless “selling” he was doing. He unleashes some TEXAN VIOLENCE and hits a Fameasser. I should point out that the two of them have been outside the ring for about five minutes by now. Very liberal count-outs in 360WE, obviously. As I type that, Judgement is rolled back in by Morris. He instantly recovers and shoulderblocks Morris off the apron, then hits the “Hangover” corkscrew plancha. Morris fends off some RAILING-FU with a kick in the ‘nads and hits a springboard dropkick in the ring. No-one’s selling nothing! Legdrop and hurricanrana get 2 for Morris. He utilises the MAIN EVENT SPINEBUSTER, but misses a moonsault. Judgement brings in a chair and helpfully tosses it to Morris. Who kabongs him with it and hits the Leap of Faith for the pinfall. *3/4 Just a bunch of stuff. All of which was no-sold.
-Postmatch, Judgement chairshots Morris a few times. This draws out Baron, who fires Judgement for it. That’s pretty harsh punishment, boss. At least they didn’t blow the ending by firing him BEFORE the match this time.
-Post-postmatch, Roper and Chung re-cap the night AGAIN. That 30-second opening squash is starting to look like a really bad call. The Main Event is next, thankfully.
Jack O’Lantern vs George McMenemy vs Fathom vs Enigma (360 Degrees of Hell Match)
The stips for this one? Fought on concrete, tables ladders and chairs in the “ring”, belt hanging over a 20-foot high barbwire-wrapped cage. One of these AGAIN? Jack Excruciatingly Bad Pun actually carries a lantern down to ringside with him. There’s someone who’ll have a lot of heat with the Gimmick Department. Fathom looks more stoned than Juvy and X-Pac combined. Jack gets tossed into the cage from the bell, blading in a near-record 14 seconds. McMenemy hands out free baseball bat samples to all and sundry until Fathom lays him out with a Full Nelson slam. Enigma puts Fathom through the barb-wire as Jack basically lets us know it’s the rubber-coated variety. McMenemy chairshots a few people and VanMcMenemys Enigma. Jack hits him with a ladder, then climbs it for no readily apparent reason. (A lot of that going around tonight.) Fathom dumps him and legdrops Enigma from the ladder. He procceds to sell a single chop from McMenemy more than falling butt-first onto concrete. The HARDCORE ROADSIGN OF INEVITABLE HURTYNESS is used by McMenemy until O’Lantern helps him blade onn the barbwire. O’Lantern suplexes McMenemy, Enigma chokeslams O’Lantern, Enigma powerbombs Fathom and out comes the tables. Everyone wanders around for a bit until McMenemy laddershots everyone and hits a Shooting Star Press off it. Up to the top of the cage go McMenemy and Fathom. They brawl a bit as Enigma gives O’Lantern the Baldobomb. Fathom sets up a ladder on the cage as Enigma sets up a table on the floor. This is so telegraphed I should have shares in Western Union. McMenemy gets to take the Suicide Bump off the top. Hope he got a bonus for that one. Upstairs, Enigma hits the MAIN EVENT SPINEBUSTER, and beats Fathom to the top to win the title. *3/4 Positives: A clean finish and not as dull as the earlier hardcore match. Negatives: Still fairly generic weapon-swinging stoush… and having to get four guys to risk killing themselves to salvage a barrel-scraping PPV is never a good thing.
-Postmatch “The Violence” Vince Jones makes his debut in a Hummer to beat down the new champ. (Along with an assortment of Hired Goons.)
-Post-punking, we find Ty Baron laid out by a Mysterious Stranger. Probably just one of the dozens of guys he fired earlier. And we’re out.
The Bottom Line: In pure wrestling terms, pretty average. In backstage terms, this place is in trouble. On-the-fly booking and last-minute subsitutions during your “Big Comeback” Pay-Per-View are bush-league in the extreme. Not quite Tom and Crow caliber material, but pretty close.
-Recommendation to avoid