First ECW on TNN
Date: August 27, 1999
Commentator: Joey Styles
From the title I think you get the idea here. This show is weird as it’s a lot like the old WWF TV shows as it’s a collection of previously aired matches thrown together here. The first show they taped was awful so they turned it into this. The main thing is Lynn vs. Van Dam from Hardcore Heaven 99 which I’ll re-review and see how it matches up with the original rating I gave it, which is something I don’t think I’ve done before. Let’s get to it.
We open with a clip of the Dudleys (who would leave for WWF in like a week) powerbombing someone through a flaming table as Joey says this isn’t WCW or WWF but ECW.
Cue theme song. The main focus is Tazz who would leave in like 2-3 months and everyone knew that was going to happen.
Joey lists off a bunch of people to have held the TV Title but says RVD might be better than all of them.
TV Title: Rob Van Dam vs. Jerry Lynn
I think this is new commentary here but I’m not sure. This is really just a way to introduce Van Dam and give us what they know is an exciting match. You can’t hear a word the ring announcer is saying. They start with a nice sequence where neither can get any real advantage but the fans love it. We actually get highlights of both guys in the middle of the match. I get that you want to showcase two of your top guys but dude, do it when there’s not a match on.
Van Dam gets knocked to the floor and Lynn takes over. Lynn gets a top rope bulldog for two. RVD is bleeding from…..something. I think at this point we go to a commercial as we get an ad for Anarchy Rulz. Joey suggests the Warrior could be coming to ECW. Oh dear. Yeah the commentary here is new. Lynn is bleeding too now after botching a fall to the floor and hitting his foot on the ropes. The replay has a rap song with it. Really?
Lynn gets a sunset powerbomb for two. What would an ECW match be without tables? Van Dam’s eye is messed up and black as coal. Van Daminator in the stands as this match is kind of hard to follow. Another commercial doesn’t help as they don’t stop the match for it, which is either a good idea or a bad idea and I’m not sure which. Lynn gets another sunset powerbomb through the table on the floor.
CUE THE RAP SONG REPLAY! After a clip or a commercial, Fonzie takes a chair pelted at his head. Lynn goes for a top rope belly to belly but he just falls off. You know the chant we get from that. Cradle Piledriver is blocked and both guys are down. Split Legged Moonsault hits Lynn. PAY ATTENTION MORRISON. THAT IS HOW YOU DO THE FREAKING MOVE. And there’s the Five Star out of more or less nowhere but Lynn rolls through for two. Van Daminator and a HUGE Five Star ends it.
Rating: B-. The clipping hurts this a lot. It makes this look like far less of an ultra competitive match and more like RVD just breaking a sweat. It’s still good but at the same time it really makes Lynn look weak. At the same time though this was about RVD and that worked very well. This was still good but a different kind of good. I gave the PPV version a B as I still find these matches to be overrated by most ECW fans.
We plug Rollerjam (which as a kid I thought was a cool show. The women were hot if nothing else) and then talk about the ECW World Title, listing off guys that didn’t win it but tried to, such as Konnan, Benoit, Austin and Foley. I’m not entirely sold on talking about guys that USED to be here, but you could look at it like this: We had these guys before they were superstars. Imagine what kind of buried treasures we have here now. That makes sense.
Shane threw down the NWA Title, which meant nothing to most fans watching this show but whatever. That was 5 years before the debut of the TV show. Didn’t know that.
ECW World Title: Taz vs. Rhyno
This is from Hardcore TV or a house show. Rhyno hits a powerbomb 3 seconds in and Taz just pops up. Rhyno means nothing at this point which you can probably guess. Well we’re in Chicago if nothing else. Taz is massacring him here with Rhyno looking like a jobber. He’s hit two punches to the ribs and a no sold powerbomb. Tazz sets up a table and Rhyno hits new levels of offense with THREE punches to the ribs. Suplex through the table sets up the Tazmission. Total squash if there ever has been one.
Rating: N/A. This was DOMINANCE which is the idea I guess, but Rhyno looks like a freaking joke here. The problem is that these matches are just random defenses with no meaning to them. We keep hearing about Steve Corino and how he’s Taz’s archenemy, but we never even see him.
Video on Sabu who is apparently awesome. No match or anything but just highlights.
Ad for Anarchy Rulz again.
Spike Dudley vs. Big Sal
Low blow and Acid Drop end it. Literally that’s the whole thing. Who is Spike? Who is Sal? “Spike has done it again!” What does he do? Apparently that’s not important. Ah ok they call him the Giant Killer.
The Impact Players introduce themselves and we have no idea if they mean anything or not. Cyrus pops up for no apparent reason as Jason makes gay jokes about Joey. We see clips of the Impact Players beating people up which helps a bit as we know they’re dominant.
House show ads.
We get a BUNCH of clips of guys and a brief description (as in their nickname) of them. It’s set to a Kid Rock song so what do you expect here?
Taz talks about how TNN and ECW are together now and how cool that is I guess. We get clips of famous people he’s made tap out. He talks for like three minutes and that ends this mess.
Overall Rating: D. This was a total mess. Considering this is the first show, this was just awful as you learn nothing about the guys other than Taz being a tough guy and RVD is awesome. Other than that though you get nothing at all here though and other than a single good match to start, this gave us nothing. We have no idea about any feuds or angles or anything like that as it was just a few squashes and one big match from months earlier. This just didn’t work as Heyman clearly didn’t know what he was doing, which became a theme here. Bad show and just a car wreck of an hour.