Monday 27 March 2017

WWE Backlash 2003 Review

Good evening Wrestling Fans of the internet to another coma-inducing edition of Seanomaniac Wrestling Reviews! Wait a minute, I am not covering WCW today so there will be no coma. I am looking back at WWE's Backlash 2003, Goldberg's pay per view match against The Rock and Big Daddy Cool's pay per view return match for the company. We also have Sean O Haire's pay per view debut match aginst Rikishi and John Cena against Brock Lesnar for The WWE Championship. Backlash more than not, delivers as a solid follow-up to Wrestlemania but will it be the case for tonight? Let's find out!


Opening Promo

The Rock has done it all, beaten them all but Rock's world was turned upside down as in came Goldberg, The WCW star and what a way to cement Goldberg as a top star from the beginning by having Goldberg face The Rock. Nothing about any other matches but this was a huge match so all is good with me. Johnathan Coachman is here again with no JR, this is disappointing but we can work with it.

(WWE Tag Team Championship Match) Los Guerreros vs Team Angle (C)

This is Eddie and Chavo's rematch for the tag team championships, losing the titles to Haas & Benjamin. Eddie & Chavo have turned babyface, I did enjoy the short burts I saw from these two at Wrestelmania. Drop toehold by Eddie, Haas flips Eddie and we reset, side headlock by Eddie. Shoulder block by Eddie for two, snapmare by Eddie for two. Small package by Eddie for two, we reset for a second time. Chavo is legal, Haas tags in Benjamin. Lock-up, Chavo takes the back and Benjamin grabs the arm, Chavo takes the back for a second time, Benjamin sweeps the leg and we reset, right hands and clubbing blows by Chavo. Tag to Eddie, forerarm shots by Eddie and a huge uppercut for two.

Tag to Chavo, double axe handle by Chavo. Short-arm scissors by Chavo, Irish whip and Haas cheap shots Chavo. Scoop slma by Benjamin and a clothesline, Irish whip and Eddie cheap shots Benjamin. Eddie stomps all over Benjamin, right hands to the guts and Chavo chokes Benjamin with the tag rope. Chavo is legal, right hand by Eddie. Back suplex by Chavo for two, slingshot hilo by Eddie for two. Back suplex by Eddie, Haas tags into the match. Chops by Eddie, back drop by Haas. Haas stomps Eddie, Benjamin chokes Eddie with the tag rope. Snap suplex by Benjamin for two, Eddie is hurled to the floor. Eddie is rammed back first into the apron, cover by Benjamin for two.

Tag to Haas, leapfrog splash manœuvre by the champions, Chavo saves Eddie. Reverse chinlock by Haas, back suplex by Eddie to escape the hold. Haas spinebusters Eddie to prevent the tag, reverse chinlock by Benjamin. Eddie escapes with a jawbreaker, Eddie dives for the tag but Benjamin has the leg of Eddie, powerslam by Benjamin for two. Another reverse chinlock by Benjamin, tag to Haas. Stomps by Haas, backbreaker into a submission hold by Haas. Eddie uses his knees to battle it out and Eddie delivers a headscissors takedown.

Eddie makes it to Chavo, back body drop by Chavo on Haas. Benjamin is knocked into the turnbuckle, Haas splashes Benjamin by accident. Brainbuster by Chavo on Haas for two, Benjamin drops Chavo with a powerbomb. Eddie connects with a missile dropkick on Benjamin. Eddie nails The Three Amigos on Haas, Chavo crawls for the cover and Haas kicks out at two. Dropkick by Chavo, Eddie nails a Frog Splash on Haas. The referee argues with Eddie, Benjamin pulls off Chavo at the last second. Benjamin sends Eddie into the steel steps, Chavo looks for a back suplex on Haas but Benjamin trips Chavo and holds Chavo's legs down while the referee counts to three. After the match, Chavo dives onto Team Angle and The Guerreros steal the championships.

That was a fun opening match, I like the dynamic of Eddie & Chavo being babyfaces but sticking to their guns and cheating to help gain advantages in the match, it is something different. I enjoyed the chemistry that the two teams have, I wish there would have been a bit more action sprinkled throughout instead of the slow start and the chinlocks. Haas & Benjamin are so much fun as a team, possible my favourite team in The WWE at this time but yeah, good stuff to open the pay per view.

Winners: Haas & Benjamin over Eddie & Chavo via Shenanigans!


Test/Torrie Wilson

Test is hitting on Torrie, Torrie turns down Test and Test is a sleazeball who is trying to cheat on his girlfriend Stacy. Test forcefully kisses Torrie, that's sexual harassment at the workplace. Sable sees it happen and stirs the pot because she is a bitch.


Sean O Haire W/ Roddy Piper vs Rikishi

Piper returned at Wrestlemania, whacking Hogan with a lead pipe, it was random and not even the finish to the match. Rikishi is Jimmy Snuka's nephew, Snuka was hit with a coconut by Piper, Piper nailed Rikishi with a coconut. Rikishi wants revenge for his family, not sure why O Haire is along side Piper but they are our dynamic duo. Match starts on the floor, Rikishi is all over O Haire, right hands by Rikishi. Clotheslines by Rikishi, Samoan drop by Rikishi. Piper is caught on the apron, O Haire nails a massive superkick. Right hands by Piper behind the referee's back.

Corner clothesline by O Haire, another clothesline knocks down O Haire. Neck crank by O Haire, stiff kick by O Haire and more neck cranking. Rikishi battles back, O Haire misses a spin kick. Rikishi nails a corner clothesline and a hip splash, O Haire blocks the stinkface by pushing Rikishi's ass. Piper has a coconut, O Haire and Rikishi kick one another, Piper is caught in the ring, right hand by Rikishi and Piper is clocked with a coconut. O Haire nails his finisher and O Haire picks up the win.

Short match to establish O Haire, the gimmick of a Devil's Advocate was an interesting one and an endorsement from Piper is a big deal. Sadly, it would not work out for O Haire and he has since passed away. A shame for a talent that was truly wasted by The WWE.

Winner: Sean O Haire over Rikishi via Widowmaker!


Sable stirs the pot

Sable tells Stacy that Torrie kissed Test and Stacy is understandably pissed so she goes after Torrie


RVD/Kane Promo

RVD is worried about the match against The Dudleys & Chief Morley, Kane tells RVD not to worry and that they will walk out as champions.

(WWE World Tag Team Championship Match) Rob Van Dam & Kane (C) vs The Dudley Boyz (Chief Morley is The Special Guest Referee)

The Dudley Boyz would turn heel at Wrestlemania by attacking RVD & Kane in their title match on The Wrestlemania pre-show. They would also attack Spike and Trish Stratus to cement their turn to the heel side. It is explained that The Dudley Boyz need to act this way in order to keep their jobs. Bubba jumps RVD to begin the match, series of reversals before a stand-off. Clothesline by Bubba, kicks by RVD. Irish whip and a spinning heel kick by RVD for two, pump kick and shoulder thrusts by RVD before Bubba answers with a clothesline. Tag to D-Von, right hands and a chest slap from D-Von. RVD answers with a spinning heel kick and a spinning leg drop before tagging Kane.

Kane back elbows D-Von for two, eye poke by D-Von. Right hands by D-Von and Kane cuts off D-Von with a big boot. D-Von blocks a clothesline with a boot and nails a leaping clothesline, tag to Bubba and Kane clotheslines Bubba. Right hands and elbows by Kane, D-Von hotshots Kane from the apron, bulldog by Bubba for two. Spinebuster by Kane for two, tag to RVD. Forearm shots by RVD, kicks in the corner. Spinning sole butt and split-legged moonsault for two. Bubba blocks the monkey flip for a sidewalk slam. Bubba cheap shots Kane and D-Von nails The What's Up? Headbutt. Spinning reverse elbow by D-Von for two, variation of the camel clutch by D-Von.

Bubba is legal and neck crank/biting by Bubba, RVD catches Bubba with a spin kick to make the hot-tag to Kane. Clotheslines and a back drop to D-Von, corner clothesline to both Dudleys. Sidewalk slam to D-Von, Bubba saves D-Von. The Dudleys double team Kane until Kane nails a big boot and a clothesline. Tag to RVD, thrust kick to D-Von, enzuigiri to Bubba. Rolling Thunder to Bubba, D-Von dodges a monkey flip for a neckbreaker. Kane takes out D-Von with a diving clothesline. Bubba gets caught for The Chokelam but at the last second, Morley low blows Kane and Bubba nails a clothesline.

Two for Bubba, Morley throws Kan to the floor. Morley clotheslines Bubba by mistake, D-Von decks Morley. Lance Storm takes out D-Von but Storm eats a Bubba Bomb from Bubba. Morley eats a 3D, Kane Chokeslams Bubba, D-Von is tossed to the floor and RVD climbs to the top and nails The Five Star Frog Splash. RVD & Kane retain their championships.

Solid tag team match, thought it could have been better. Why was Lance Storm out there? It was so random and they explained that RVD took out Storm so why would Storm attack D-Von? I do not understand that part, the ending was a bit chaotic and all over the place so I felt let down by this match.

Winners: RVD & Kane over The Dudley Boyz via Five Star Frog Splash!


Stacy & Torrie Fight

Stacy confronts Torrie and the two brawl in the locker room, being pulled apart by the other women wrestlers.

(WWE Women's Championship Match) Trish Stratus (C) vs Jazz W/ Theodore Long

Trish is injured in storyline as The Dudleys attcked her and Jazz applied The Bitch Clamp onto a table, Theodore Long is in Jazz's corner, looks like Thuggin & Buggin is a thing at this point. Jazz backbreakers Trish after some nice mat wrestling, Trish answers with a clothesline but Jazz clubs Trish down to the mat. Bitch Clamp by Jazz, knees to the back of Trish. Trish nails a gutwrench suplex for two, right hands by Trish before Trish lowers her head off an Irish whip, Jazz snaps back the head. Jazz exposes a turnbuckle, the referee is fixing the turnbuckle and misses Trish's roll-up. Jabs by Jazz, Trish comes back with forearms. Boot by Jazz, Jazz is on the second rope.

Jazz blocks the handstand headscissors for a single leg Boston crab. Trish reverses for a roll-up, Trish applies a Boston crab. STF by Trish, Jazz is dragged to the middle of the ring. Chick Kick by Trish, Jazz kicks out at two. Jawbreaker and a dropkick by Jazz, two for Jazz. Trish slides out of a back suplex, Stratusfaction and Theodore Long nails Trish with his shoe. Small package by Jazz for two, Jazz blocks a roll-up and uses the ropes to steal the win.

They did the best they could in the short amount of time they had, Jazz was missed in the division but the division is starting to become a little stale. On the heel side, you have Molly Holly, Victoria and Jazz, on the face side you have Trish and Terri and Stacy. The last two are not going to ever challenge for the championship so you see there is a problem. Other than that, it was ok but it is not looking like the most lively or deep roster.

Winner: Jazz over Trish Stratus via Roll-Up using The Ropes!


Rey Mysterio vs Big Show

Mysterio humiliated Big Show repeatedly on Smackdown, Show had fallen on his ass in comedic fashion and Show wants to kill Mysterio. Mysterio runs away from Show, frustrating the giant. Mysterio clubs at Show but Show is shoving off Mysterio, Mysterio is hurled into the corner, huge chest slap by Show. Mysterio hotshots Show, springboard crossbody is blocked as Show scores with a backbreaker. Hard Irish whip by Show, Show steps on the throat of Mysterio. Show boots Mysterio out of the ring, Mysterio nails Show with a chair after Show shoves the referee down. Senton and 619S by Mysterio, three to be exact.

Show blocks The West Coast Pop, grabbing Mysterio by the throat and nailing The Chokeslam for the win. Mysterio is injured and a stretcher is brought down to the ring and Show decides to introduce Mysterio to the ringpost while still on the stretcher. This would be the start of a gimmick for Show in the run-up to his pay per view match with Brock Lesnar at Judgement Day.

Basically, a squash match but with Undertaker and Angle not around after Wrestlemania, Smackdown was light on main event heels. Show needed to get some steam and this was for the best. Did it have any place on pay per view? Not really but it served a very important purpose.

Winner: Big Show over Rey Mysterio via Chokeslam!


Jericho/Triple H/Ric Flair Promo

Triple H says he is not afraid of Kevin Nash, Triple H puts over his team and Jericho talks more trash about Shawn Michaels. Flair kills it as per usual.

(WWE Championship Match) Brock Lesnar (C) vs John Cena

John Cena steps into the main event battling Brock Lesnar after Lesnar's hellacious match with Kurt Angle at Wrestlemania. Cena would create The FU to mock Lesnar's F-5 which is great to know that Cena continues to use it to this day under a different name. Cena was able to topple Undertaker, Chris Benoit and Eddie Guerrero to earn this opportunity, Cena would also bust open the head of Lesnar in the run-up to this match.

Cena jumps Lesnar from behind, elbows by Cena. Lesnar comes back with knees and a hard Irish whip, backbreakers by Lesnar. Suplex by Lesnar, make it two. Two count for Lesnar, front chancery by Lesnar. Fisherman suplex by Lesnar for two, stomps by Lesnar. Military Press slam by Lesnar, Cena is clotheslined to the floor. Cena is introduced into the announce table, Cena powders off an Irish whip. Lesnar catches Cena on the floor, knees and clubbing blows by Lesnar. Cena reverses Lesnar and Lesnar is whipped into the steel steps, Cena rams Lesnar's head into the steel steps. Lesnar is a bloody mess, Cena covers for two.

Back suplex for two, Cena chokes the life out of Lesnar. Back elbow by Cena, Lesnar blocks a corner splash. Cena shoulder tackles Lesnar to the apron, knees to the head by Cena. Cena nails a middle rope leg drop to Lesnar who is hung across the rope, Cena sends Lesnar into the ringpost. Cover and two for Cena, reverse chinlock by Cena. Lesnar snapmares Cena off but Cena recovers to DDT Lesnar for a close two. Desperation spinebuster by Lesnar, jawbreaker into a clothesline by Cena for two. Chinlock with a bodyscissors by Cena, they sit in the hold for quite some time.

Cena is rammed into the turnbuckles, Lesnar is free. Clotheslines by Lesnar, powerslam for two. Shoulder thrusts by Lesnar, powerslam by Lesnar for two. Shoulder thrusts by Lesnar, Irish whip and Lesnar almost hits the referee. Low blow by Cena and a roll-up for two, neckbreaker by Cena for two. Lesnar backs Cena into the corner, Cena grabs his chain. Referee throws away the chain, F-5 by Lesnar and this match is over.

This was not the best showing for Lesnar, sloppy in Brock's comeback I do not think one move during the comeback came off smoothly and they lost me at the sleeper. It was very slow with the crowd not caring about the action going on in the ring while once they sat there for that long, the fans like me just said ok end this match already.

Winner: Brock Lesnar over John Cena via F-5!


Kevin Nash/Shawn Michaels/Booker T vs Triple H/Ric Flair/Chris Jericho

Kevin Nash returned to the WWE the night after Wrestlemania, Nash saved Michaels but Nash was not against his other buddy Triple H. Triple H tried to manipulate Nash reminding Big Daddy Cool of Michaels and his show-stealing ways but Triple H would ultimately kick Nash in the dick and now, Nash is ready to destory his Kliq Buddy. Poor Booker T feels like an afterthought in the whole thing, it looks like Triple H will start with Nash but Triple H backs off so we begin with Jericho and Michaels.

Lock-up, right hands by Michaels, right hands and chops by Jericho. Michaels brawls back, shoulder block by Michaels. Clubbing blows by Jericho, roll-up by Michaels and Jericho counters with the two trading pins to pop the crowd. Right hand by Jericho brings that to a close, Jericho looks for The Walls but Michaels shakes off Jericho. Armdrag by Michaels and a tag to Nash, right hand by Nash and Jericho is on the floor. Nash wants Triple H, Jericho blind sides Nash. Jericho skins the cat to eat a big boot, tag to Booker T. Spinebuster by Booker for two, right hands and chops by Booker. Jericho spears Booker towards his corner and in comes Triple H.

Thrustkick by Booker for two, facebuster by The Game. Chops and right hands by Triple H, Booker battles back but Triple H scores with a knee. Spinebuster by Triple H, tag to Flair who misses an elbow and in comes Michaels. Right hands by Michaels, back drop and Jericho is elevated to the floor. Inverted atomic drop into a clothesline by Michaels on Triple H, flying forearm to Flair. Sweet Chin Music on Flair but Triple H nails a Pedigree on Michaels. Tag to Jericho, right hand by Y2J. Tag to Triple H, Michaels fires up but Triple H scores with a knee. Booker saves Michaels, in comes Flair. Flair almost gets rolled-up but survives to tag Jericho.

Knee to the ribs by Jericho, tag to Triple H who smacks Michaels' leg off the ringpost. Flair is in and working the leg. Michaels fights back and nails an enzuigiri, shoulder block by Michaels for two. Tag to Triple H and Nash gets the tag, right hands by Nash. Elbows in the corner and a scoop slam, Jericho and Flair take slams. Flair is clotheslined to the floor, Jericho eats another big boot and Triple H is treated to snake eyes and a sidewalk slam. Flair saves Triple H, chops with no effect. Booker goes after Flair, Nash and Jericho brawl in the ring. Triple H is not able to score with The Pedigree, Nash looks for The Jacknife but Jericho missile dropkicks Nash.

Booker drops Jericho with a Scissors Kick, Flair eats a Harlem sidekick. Spinaroonie, Booker and Jericho are on the floor, Nash and Triple H are battling up the ramp. Michaels and Flair are in the ring, Flair is yanked off the top rope. Jericho saves Flair from Sweet Chin Music, Figure Four by Flair. Lionsault by Jericho, Nash is clearing the table. Nash decides to save Michaels, right hands to Jericho and Flair. Snake eyes to Jericho, Flair is bumped into the referee. Jacknife Powerbomb to Jericho, Triple H wallops Nash with the sledgehammer to win the match.

It was kind of a mess, Michaels as a babyface in peril is always great. Michaels can sell with best of them and Michaels was in the zone as he often is but the match was nothing special once the hot tag came. It just went all over the place, the cameras could not keep up with everything. We missed Nash punishing Triple H, we were only able to see the dying seconds as Nash looked to powerbomb The Game through the table. Triple H beating Nash off the bat as well? Not a big fan of that finish, could have Nash beaten Flair to kick-off his babyface run with a bang, I mean Flair does not need to beat anyone in this match so why not do that?

Winners: Triple H/Flair/Jericho over Nash/Michaels/Booker via Sledgehammer!


Rock Interview

Rock is interviewed by Terri Runnels and Rock cuts another great promo while also verbally destroying Goldberg to such a degree where I feel it hurt the man's WWE career. Damn Rock, you left us wrestling fans way too soon.

The Rock vs Goldberg

The Rock had beaten everyone, all the big names that The WWE had at their disposal. The Rock had done it all but in comes Goldberg, the big WCW star. Rock takes on Goldberg with The Rock leaving and Goldberg joining the company for a year. The Rock is one of the least selfish top stars to ever grace The WWE and perhaps it was a better move for Goldberg to run over The Rock like Goldberg would do night after night in WCW as opposed to a long match with The People's Champion.

Lock-up and Rock is thrown off by Goldberg, second lock-up with the same result. Rock slaps Goldberg hard, Goldberg laughs it off and nails a shoulder block and a clothesline to the floor. A lot of stalling before Rock hotshots and clotheslines Goldberg, right hands by Rock. Goldberg drops Rock with a Rock Bottom, Goldberg calls for The Spear. Rock dodges and Goldberg nails the ringpost shoulder first. Sharpshooter by The Rock, Rock's sharpshooter looks so bad I do not know how he got away with it, Goldberg makes it to the ropes and Rock low blows Goldberg with the referee elsewhere. Rock measures for The Rock Bottom but Goldberg counters with The Spear, Rock survives due to Goldberg's injured shoulder.

Right hands by Goldberg, shoulder block and a powerslam. Two for Goldberg, knees and right hands. Whip to the corner, Rock nails a clothesline and Goldberg is up before Rock nails a Spear and Rock kips-up, Rock Bottom could be coming. Rock Bottom, cover and two, right hands by The Rock. Goldberg answers with a clothesline, Rock reverses an Irish whip and nails a spinebuster. People's Elbow by Rock for two, Goldberg is up first for a Spear? Ok another Spear, Jackhammer and it is over.

First, The Rock during this run is not appreciated enough, the man was too funny for The WWE and Hollywood was made for the man. Rock was entertaining in this match, Rock was what I cared for in this match and Rock is the reason this match gets a pass in my book. That match did nothing for Goldberg, Goldberg was in there with a man who simply was not going to be booed, Goldberg had the crowd turn on him, they were chanting he sucked and it was a nightmare from WWE's point of view.

 Winner: Goldberg over The Rock via Jackhammer!

At the beginning of this review, I spoke of how Backlash delivered as a pay per view, the product had not come down from the highs of Wrestlemania and there was fun to be had, after watching this pay per view, I feel like a complete moron for saying that because this pay per view proved me wrong. I will give props to all those involved in the opening match for giving me a good match and the women's championship match was not bad either.

I feel everything else took me for granted and dumped me at the side of the road, Lesnar and Cena was too long and showed both men's weaknesses. The six-man tag was nothing special with a finish that makes me question how Nash will be challenging for the championship and the main event was all about The Rock and the fans love for The People's Champion. Goldberg played second fiddle to The Rock, got booed and it looks like his WWE career is already off to a shaky start. No need to see this show if only for Rock's last match for a while.

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