Monday 28 November 2016

WWF Survivor Series 2001 Review

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Good evening you Sasquatch looking silly billies to another hard-hitting edition of the only wrestling review series that tears Kevin Nash’s quad for him: Seanomaniac Wrestling Reviews! It has been too long since I have continued sifting my way through The Invasion storyline but fear not eagle-eyed readers as I am here to end it all with my review of Survivor Series 2001. The stage is set, five of The Alliance vs five of The WWF in a winner takes all match. If The Alliance wins, there is no more WWF while if The WWF wins, there is no more Alliance. It is the first time in a while that there is a big important tag match heading into Survivor Series so I am excited for this match despite the storyline. Other big matches on this card include, a unification match for the Intercontinental and United States Championship between Edge and Test, an immunity battle royal with the winner not being fired for a year and a tag team championship unification steel cage match between The Hardy Boyz and The Dudley Boyz. For those who want an end to The Invasion storyline, here is WWF’s Survivor Series 2001!

Opening Promo

Freddy Blassie narrates over footage of the WWF while we hear the familiar voice of Jim Morrison of The Doors singing The End which is usually reserved for Armageddon. Clips of Wrestlemania main events interspliced with Alliance Footage and WWF Footage. Gripping stuff which gets you pumped for the main event. JR and Paul Heyman welcome us to the pay per view which has a nice stage design and we are live from North Carolina.

(WWF European Championship Match) Christian © vs Al Snow

While Christian had failed to outshine his brother Edge, Christian is now your European Champion. Al Snow who was busy filming Tough Enough during The Alliance storyline finds himself in a title match for no reason. Christian cuts a promo making fun of the fans before Snow comes down to the ring ready to kick some ass. Snow takes down Christian with a side headlock, Christian eats a shoulder block from Snow. Despite the ring rust, Christian is being outwrestled.

 Christian goes low and chops Snow, pumphandle plex by Snow. Snow takes his eyes off the ball and Christian drags the challenger into the turnbuckle. The crowd chants for Head but there is no Head in sight. Hard Irish whip and a side Russian legsweep for a two count by the champion. Christian applies a sleeper, Snow battles back and both men trade bombs. Christian drops Snow with a double underhook suplex, fists to the face by Christian.

Christian chokes Snow in the corner before Snow begins battling back, Christian rakes the eyes. Snow starts jabbing Christian, Christian is headbutted into oblivion by Snow. Irish whip and a stiff clothesline to the back of the head by Snow. Christian eats a superkick, cover and a two count for the challenger.

 Snow drills Christian with as sit-out spinebuster for a two count, Christian scores with a reverse DDT. Christian talks trash and Snow rolls-up Christian for a two count, Snow climbs to the top rope and nails a crossbody but Christian rolls through for a two count. Snow looks for The Snowplow, Snow scores but Christian puts his foot on the ropes. Christain kicks the ropes into Snow’s face and Christian scores with The Unprettier and Christian wins the match. Decent opening match from these two, fans did not care a lot until towards the end of the match.

Winner: Christian over Al Snow via Unprettier!

Austin and Alliance Promo

Shane and Stephanie question Austin’s allegiance because Austin smiled at Vince on Smackdown which was a little strange for The Alliance. Austin says Austin is leading the charge and Austin is the leader of The Alliance. Vince and Linda are talking in a hallway and Michael Cole interviews Vince and Vince says do not worry the WWF will win tonight’s all or nothing match. Vince says there is a sixth man for the WWF while William Regal interrupts Vince Mcmahon and Regal says he will be happy to watch Vince fail as The Alliance win tonight’s match.

William Regal vs Tajiri W/ Torrie Wilson

Tajiri was loyal to the WWF and taken under the wing of William Regal before Regal turned on Tajiri and the WWF by helping Austin defeat Kurt Angle for the WWF Championship. Tajiri’s girlfriend had been assaulted on Smackdown by Regal with a tigerbomb and a Regal Stretch. Tajiri kicks Regal to begin the match, Regal nails a rolling firemen’s carry to take down Tajiri.

 High knee by Regal, dropkick to the knee by Tajiri and Tajiri continues trying to break down the leg of Regal. Regal gets caught in The Tarantula, handspring elbow for a two count. Regal ties up Tajiri in the ropes and stretches The Japanese Buzzsaw. Tajiri blocks a tigerbomb and drills Regal with a kick to the head, Regal dodges the Buzzsaw Kick.

 Tigerbomb by Regal and Regal picks up the win over Tajiri. Regal says it is not over and Regal drills Tajiri with another Tigerbomb. Regal is still not done as Regal drills Torrie with a Tigerbomb. Felt more like an angle than a match because it was so brief, it makes sense as Regal would be the next challenger to Edge’s Intercontinental Championship.

Winner: Regal over Tajiri via Tigerbomb!

(Unification Match) Edge © vs Test ©

Test had beaten Edge for the Intercontinental Championship while Edge had beaten Kurt Angle for The United States Championship. Test is backstage having oil rubbed all over him while Test chats up Stacy Keblier. They lock up with Test overpowers Edge, clean break from Test. Another lock up with Edge overpowering Test. Test shoves Edge and Edge tees off on Test, crossbody by Edge. 

Third lock up and Test takes a cheap shot at Edge, clothesline by Test. Test chokes Edge with his foot and drops Edge onto the barricade. Edge fires back with a dropkick and a hiptoss, baseball slide by Edge. Edge nails Test with a swinging neckbreaker back inside the ring, one count for Edge. Test takes control with a flapjack and a hard knockdown. Corner clothesline by Test who is bullying Edge all around the ring. Test applies a reverse chinlock.

Edge uses his knees to fight out of the hold, Test eats a missile dropkick, two count for Edge, Test nails a tilt-a-whirl slam to cut off Edge. Edge smashes Test with a right hand, Edge misses a crossbody though. Test props Edge on the top turnbuckle, Edge counters the suplex and attempts a sunset powerbomb. Test kicks off Edge and leaps into a dropkick from Edge. Both men throwing bombs, Edge knocks down Test with clotheslines and a spinning heel kick. Unique facebuster by Edge for a two count, Test looks for the pumphandle but Edge slips out for an Edge O Matic.

 Test Spears Edge for a two count! Test almost won with Edge’s own move. Test measures for The Big Boot, Edge dodges, Test dodges The Spear. Pumphandle Slam by Test for a two count, Test looks for a powerbomb, Edge counters with a hurricanrana and a Spear by Edge for a two count. Edge attempts The Edgecution but Test counters for a full-nelson but Edge rolls through into a victory roll for the win.

 In the beginning, I was not high on this match it did not seem to interest me but the last few minutes of near-falls and close calls were exciting and just what the match needed. Edge’s stock continues to rise in the WWF, it is cool watching a superstar grow before your very eyes.

Winner: Edge over Test via victory roll!

(Tag Team Championship Unification Steel Cage Match) The Hardy Boyz vs The Dudley Boyz W/ Stacy Keblier

The two premier tag teams of each faction clash in this cage match. The story leading into this match is there is tension simmering between Matt, Jeff and Lita. The Hardys Boyz better be on the same page to take down The Dudley Boyz. All four men face off in the ring and begin the match like a regular tag team match. Bubba and Matt to kick us off, Bubba charges in and eats right hands from Matt.

 Hard Irish whips by Matt and a clothesline before Matt nails D-Von. Tag to Jeff, double elbow and Omega combination. Bubba cuts off Jeff with a side slam for a two count, D-Von starts teeing off on Jeff. Jeff nails D-Von with a flying dropkick, tag to Matt. Matt Irish whips D-Von, backslide by Matt for a two count before D-Von scores with Saving Grace. 

Reverse elbow by D-Von, tag to Bubba who clubs Matt across the back. Elbow by Bubba, make it three. Bubba tags D-Von, D-Von tries ramming Matt into the cage but Matt blocks. Bubba and D-Von beat down on Matt until Matt counters a powerslam with a neckbreaker. Tag to Jeff, Jeff clubs both Dudleys and now all four men are fighting in the ring. Poetry in Motion on Bubba and D-Von. The Hardys begin escaping the cage.

The Dudleys are in hot pursuit and Bubba drills Jeff with a Bubba Bomb while D-Von smacks Matt with a neckbreaker. Bubba tries climbing out of the cage but Matt drags Bubba off the top rope. Matt and D-Von square off in the corner but Bubba saves D-Von as The Dudleys elevate Matt into the cage wall. Bubba tries to elevate Jeff but Jeff climbs the cage and almost escapes before The Dudleys nail a Doomsday Device on Jeff.

 The Dudleys stomp all over The Hardy Boyz, modified neckbreaker on Jeff for a two count. D-Von squishes Matt against the cage wall before Bubba does the same. Jeff is also thrown into the cage, D-Von unloads a flurry of fists on Jeff before The Dudleys look to squish Jeff with a double splash.

 Jeff avoids both splashes and Matt nails both Dudleys with a diving clothesline. Matt takes on both Dudleys with neckbreakers. DDT by Matt on Bubba for a two count, double back body drop on Bubba by The Hardys. Matt and Jeff combine to nail The Omega Splash on Bubba. Cover and D-Von makes the save for his team.

Matt begins climbing the cage and is almost free but D-Von is battling Matt, D-Von hangs Matt upside down on the cage and Bubba and D-Von combine to nail a diving headbutt on Jeff. Stacy grabs a table and uses her assets to charm referee Nick Patrick, Stacy steals the key for the cage door and puts the table in the ring. Matt and Jeff avoid a 3D through the table and Matt begins escaping the cage. Matt manages to escape the clutches of Bubba and drops to the floor.

 Jeff is all alone with two Dudleys and a table. Jeff manages to place D-Von on the table and climb his way towards escaping the cage. Jeff is moments from victory but Jeff sees D-Von on the table and Jeff cannot help himself. 

Jeff dives for a Swanton Bomb on D-Von but D-Von moves out of the way and Bubba crawls over to Jeff to steal the pin. A good match between these two teams they always seemed to create an entertaining match with one another. This match would also lead to the break-up of The Hardys as Jeff was always taking risk while Matt was the one with the brains.

Winners: The Dudley Boyz over Hardy Boyz via pin-fall!

Immunity Battle Royal

The winner of this match cannot be fired for a year regardless of the outcome of the main event so this is an important match in kayfabe. Test takes out Scotty Too Hotty prior to this match. The match is littered with mid-carders and jobbers. Notably, The Alliance has the likes of Lance Storm and DDP in this match. Stasiak is thrown out right away, and Tazz decides to enter himself into the match. Lots of brawling with no eliminations for some time until Bradshaw kills Hurricane with a Clothesline From Hell.

 Albert press out a clean shaven Perry Saturn, Test throws out Faarooq. Chuck Palumbo throws out DDP, The Impact Players superkick out Chuck Palumbo before Hugh Morrus and Chavo Guerrero run into the match. Funaki and Raven are gone, Billy Gunn takes care of Chavo and Hugh Morrus.

 Tazz dumps out Crash and Dreamer. Bradshaw kills Steven Richards, Tazz is thrown out by Billy Gunn. Test throws out Albert while Bradshaw hurls out Billy Kidman. We are down to four: Bradshaw, Lance Storm, Test and Billy Gunn. Test bundles over Storm and Bradshaw and Billy Gunn looks for The FameAsser but Test Big Boots Billy Gunn to the floor. Entertaining as battle royals go.

Winner: Test over Everyone Else via Survival!

(WWF Women’s Championship Match) Trish Stratus vs Lita vs Jacqueline vs Ivory vs Mighty Molly vs Jazz

The Women’s Championship had been inactive since Chyna left the company after Judgement Day in May of that year. I guess WWF decided it was time for women to compete for a title once again after having them fight over nothing for many months. The real surprise is Jazz, the former ECW wrestler who would wrestle men like Simon Diamond and The FBI.

 Jazz sprints to the ring and takes down Lita, big impact right there from Jazz. Jazz nails Lita with a double underhook suplex, headscissors takedown by Lita. Jacqueline and Molly are in the ring, test of strength with Jackie taking down Molly. Huge chops from Jacqueline, hiptoss and dropkick from Jacqueline. Dropkick to Ivory by Jacqueline, sunset flip and series of pins by the two ladies. Ivory catapults Jacqueline into the ropes and in comes Trish.

 Takedown and catapult into the ropes by Trish. Flapjack by Trish but Molly cheap shots Trish and Ivory cheap shots Lita. The Alliance women triple team Trish before the match breaks down completely. Poetry in Motion on Jazz and Jackie takes off Lita’s head on the second attempt.

Everyone takes turns hitting finishers with Molly Go Rounds, Poison Ivory, Twists of Fate and Chick Kicks. Lita double clotheslines Molly and Jazz, Jazz rakes Lita’s eyes and Trish back drops Lita to the floor and lowbridges Jazz. Trish nails Ivory with The Stratusfaction and Trish wins her first women’s championship. While Trish was a far-cry from the wrestler she would become, this was the beginning of a change for The Divas as Trish would head a division that would reach heights that not one person could have foreseen.

Winner: Trish over Everyone Else via pin-fall!

(Winner Takes All Match Survivor Series Match) Team WWF (The Rock, Chris Jericho, Big Show, Kane, and The Undertaker) vs Team Alliance (Stone Cold Steve Austin, Kurt Angle, RVD, Booker T, and Shane Mcmahon)

Here we go the big match with everything on the line, the winner of this match decides the fate of the wrestling world. There could be no more Raw or Smackdown, there could be Alliance Raw or even Monday Night Nitro. The promo package is everything you wish it could be as it hypes everything up by ten and it damn sure informs you that this is survival of the fittest and this is all or nothing. Not only that but you had Austin possibly defecting to the WWF, Kurt Angle turning on the WWF and the bitter infighting between The Rock and Chris Jericho. There are a lot of combustible elements to this match and that’s what makes the match so special.

Match kicks off with Austin and The Rock, Austin chops Rock but Rock turns the tide with right hands. Lou Thesz Press by Austin and an elbow, cover and a two count. Rock nails his own Lout Thesz Press and elbow before Shane cheap shots Rock. Tag to Booker T, Booker chops The Rock before The Rock nails a leaping clothesline. Rock tags Jericho, Jericho chops Booker and scores with a flapjack. Tag to RVD, lock up with Y2J.

 RVD and Jericho trade counters before Jericho scores with a spinning heel kick, vertical suplex by Jericho. Chops by Jericho on Rob Van Dam, RVD nails a cartwheel splash on Y2J. Jericho counters a powerbomb into a Walls of Jericho before Shane makes the save. Angle and Kane are the next two in the match, Angle unloads on Kane before Kane tosses Angle into the corner. Huge shots to Angle by Kane. Corner clothesline by Kane, Angle nails a German suplex on Kane. Kane sits up and Angle goes back to work on The Big Red Machine.

Kane outpowers Angle, diving clothesline by Kane. Shane interrupts the match once again, tag to Undertaker. Angle elbows Taker and tags Booker T, big boot and leg drop by Taker on Booker T. Taker scores with Old School on Booker and wrenches the arm of Booker T. Short-arm scissors by Taker on Booker T, Undertaker clotheslines Booker and Shane interrupts the match.

 Austin is legal and Austin tees off on Undertaker, Austin misses a knee across the back and Undertaker takes control of Austin. Undertaker nails Old School for the second time in the match. Taker is man-handle in the corner while the referee is with the WWF team. Taker and Angle trade bombs before Angle scores with a neckbreaker. Angle looks for a German suplex but Taker counters with a DDT.

 Tag to Big Show, Show runs over Angle and chops Angle. Angle is tossed halfway across the ring, RVD eats a clothesline and a military press slam. Show takes down every Alliance member before Angle drops Show with an Angle Slam, Booker tags in and nails The Scissors Kick and The Spinaroonie. RVD tags in and nails The Five Star Frog Splash before Shane climbs to the top and nails his Leap of Faith elbow to eliminate Big Show.

Big Show has been eliminated!

Shane celebrates but Kane picks up poor Shane for a Chokeslam and Kane tags Undertaker who decides that Shane deserves a Tombstone. Y2J receives the tag and nails The Lionsault and it is all over for Shane. Good idea to get Shane out early and Show’s elimination is a reflection of Show’s career by this point.

Shane Mcmahon has been eliminated!

Booker T does some real damage on Jericho with a scoop slam and a knee drop before tagging RVD. RVD kicks Jericho and nails his signature shoulder thrusts before Jericho tries a sunset flip for a two count. Tag to Kane, Kane picks up RVD and starts hammering away on RVD. Series of clotheslines by Kane, Kane blocks a punch from RVD but RVD kicks out of the hold.

 Running powerslam by Kane on RVD, Booker is knocked down by Kane before RVD knocks down Kane. Five Star Frog Splash by RVD on Kane, RVD looks for the pin but Kane grabs RVD’s throat. The match breaks down as both teams brawl. Meanwhile, RVD eliminates Kane with his diving kick. Lame elimination for someone like Kane.

Kane has been eliminated!

Undertaker takes it upon himself to decimate The Alliance, clotheslines and big boots to every member of the team. Last Ride to Angle by Undertaker, Austin capitalizes with a Stunner and Angle drapes the arm over and Undertaker has been eliminated.

Undertaker has been eliminated!

It is four on two and The Alliance is firmly in control of this match. Booker nearly takes the head off The Rock with a leg lariat. Rock creates some space with a DDT. Rock scores with a Samoan drop for a two count before Austin breaks up the pin attempt. Rock rolls up Booker T out of nowhere when an Irish whip sends Booker T into Kurt Angle.

Booker T has been eliminated!

RVD enters the ring but Rock drills RVD with a powerbomb like manoeuvre for a two count, Jericho wants in on this match. Jericho jumps RVD, clotheslines and neckbreakers by Y2J. RVD is chopped hard in the corner, modified bulldog by Y2J. RVD avoids The Lionsault and scores with a spinning heel kick. Van Dam looks for a Split Legged Moonsault and Jericho gets the feet up and delivers a Breakdown to RVD for the elimination. No reaction for that move so I can see why it disappeared after a while.

RVD has been eliminated!

Angle applied a sleeper to Jericho but Jericho battled out of the hold, Angle trips up Jericho and goes back to work on Y2J. Tag to Austin, Austin drills Jericho with a superplex. Cover and a two count for Austin, big botch in the middle of the ring with Austin dumping Jericho right on his head after a miscommunication. Tag to Angle who chokes Y2J by using the ropes, Jericho applies an Ankle Lock but Angle rolls out and clobbers Jericho with a clothesline.

 Austin is legal and Austin scores with a suplex and a stomp to the face. Back elbow by Austin and a foot choke by the WWF Champion. Angle picks apart Jericho before tagging Austin, Austin stomps away at Jericho. Reverse chinlock by Austin, Jericho and Austin trade bombs before there is a huge double knockdown. Rock gets the hot tag, Rock tees off on Angle and nails an overhead belly to belly suplex. Dragon screw and sharpshooter by The Rock and Angle taps out from the pain.

Kurt Angle has been eliminated!

Austin and Jericho are battling in the middle of the ring, Austin fights out of The Walls of Jericho and looks to place Jericho in his own hold. Jericho counters the hold and catches Austin with a right hand. Austin blocks The Lionsault with his knees and almost eliminates Y2J. Jericho is on the top rope after pushing off Austin, missile dropkick by Y2J for a two count. Austin counters a school boy into his own pinning hold to eliminate Jericho.

Chris Jericho has been eliminated!

Rock has Austin down on the canvas before Jericho nails a Breakdown on The Rock, Austin crawls into the cover and it is a 1..2.. Rock kicks out at two and a half. Undertaker scares the bejesus out of Y2J who runs away from The Undertaker. Austin stomps all over The Rock before sending The Rock to the floor. Austin chops Rock on the floor by the announce table.

 Rock turns the tables by hurling Austin over The Spanish announce table and starts pummelling The Rattlesnake. Chops by The Rock on Austin but Austin scores with a spinebuster and Austin locks in a sharpshooter. Rock reaches the ropes and Austin grabs his belt from ringside. Rock dodges and nails a spinebuster and his own sharpshooter. 

Austin makes it to the ropes but Rock drags back Austin to the middle of the ring. Rock breaks the hold, Austin low blows Rock behind the referee’s back. Rock drills Austin with a Stunner out of nowhere. Rock crawls into the cover and Austin is saved by Nick Patrick.

Rock plans to Rock Bottom Nick Patrick but Austin nails Rock with a Rock Bottom, Rock kicks out and Austin takes out his frustration on Nick Patrick. Rock blocks The Stunner and throws Austin into referee Earl Hebnar, Austin blocks The Rock Bottom and scores with The Stunner. Kurt Angle runs to ringside and nails Austin with the WWF Championship and The Rock plants Austin with The Rock Bottom for the win. The Alliance is dead and the WWF survive the war.

Great intense Survivor Series Style match, there were a few questionable moments throughout like so many WWF superstars jumping to The Alliance, many Alliance members could not beat a WWF superstar without cheating. There were plotholes, pointless moments and a huge focus on The Mcmahons that overshadows a lot of the action but at the end of the day, that match was dramatic, it made Survivor Series mean something in terms of a big tag match for the first time in a few years and you have The Rock finally gaining redemption by beating Stone Cold after what Stone Cold had done to The Rock at Wrestlemania.

 I also like the story of Kurt being the mole due to his run as a babyface during the summer. It was executed well and it would be one of the last great Survivor Series elimination matches along with the Team Austin vs Team Bischoff match from 2003 and The Authority vs Team Cena at 2014.

Winner: The Rock over Everyone Else via Survival!

Survivor Series 2001 was a good show from the WWF, I am not sure a lot of the matches felt like they belonged on a card of one of the big four pay per views based on their quality but if you take into account the grand scheme of things, you had so much happen on this pay per view. You had unification matches, you had the restart of the women’s division in the WWF and you had a Survivor Series elimination match that grabbed a lot of people’s attention and ended a poorly executed angle and now everyone could move on from it and pretend it never happened which is what the WWF did because it was almost Wrestlemania season and a certain Cerebral Assassin was almost ready to make his return!

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