Hey Ho folks, its been sometime since I last put pen to paper, or to be more exact, finger tips to keyboard, but I’m back, and ready to once again analyse the highs and lows of the latest WWE Video and DVD releases. And we may be in new surroundings, but that’s doesn’t mean we have changed; I will still scrutinize, criticize and give my honest opinion on all the products I review. Anyway, enough of that, in this review, we will be looking at the first RAW brand PPV, WWE Badd Blood 2003.
Length: (VHS) 156 mins (DVD) 187 mins
Here is a look at the PPV card from top to bottom:
- Hell in a Cell World Heavyweight Championship Match: Triple H vs. Kevin Nash / Special referee Mick Foley
- Redneck Triathlon
- Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. Eric Bischoff
- Shawn Michaels vs. Ric Flair
- Goldberg vs. Chris Jericho
- World Tag Team Championship Match: Kane & Rob Van Dam vs. La Resistance
- Intercontinental Championship Match: Christian vs. Booker T
- Test vs. Scott Steiner
- Dudley Boyz vs. Rodney Mack & Christopher Nowinski
As I said, this was the RAW brands first PPV, and it featured all RAW’s top superstars. The main event of the evening was a spiced up rematch from Judgement Day, as Kevin Nash took on Triple H for the World Heavyweight Championship, in a Hell in a Cell match, with special guest referee Mick Foley. As you can see, this match had been “spiced” up a lot, but it needed to be, the last match these two had at Judgement Day didn’t win any match of the year awards, in fact it didn’t even come close, and the feud between the two was getting tired and old, so with the introduction of the Hardcore Legend Mick Foley in the fray and a couple of tons of steel, the brains at the WWE thought they might get away with it, but I’m sorry but I don’t even think Mick Foley could save this one.
Also after an absence from the Judgement Day card, Goldberg made his return to PPV taking on Chris Jericho. The WWE had been trying to book this match as if Chris Jericho and Goldberg had a long rivalry from WCW, and that at Badd Blood the score would finally be settled. With Jericho spraying Goldberg in the face with mace, wrecking his car, and getting in his face a lot, they seemed to be booking the feud quite well. The one question I had was could these two deliver a decent match? There is no question about Chris Jericho’s skills as an in ring competitor, but after Goldberg’s dull performance at Backlash with The Rock, I was dubious about this match.
Badd Blood would also see two of the greatest wrestling superstars of all time do battle, as Shawn Michaels took on Ric Flair.
Highs and Lows
To kick us off, we have Rodney Mack and Nowinski vs. The Brother’s Dudley. Well the first match wasn’t too bad. Both teams were solid for the most part. Shame about Mack’s singles push, however seems to be ok teaming himself with Nowinski. The match was pretty basic for the most part, the ending game when Mack used the “metal” mask of Nowinski to get the pin. This was an average match, and I believe it was not the best way to start the PPV, it seemed to lack in enthusiasm and really should have been put on RAW instead of a PPV.
Now it’s the first of many instalments of the Austin vs. Bischoff Redneck Triathlon. This segment sees Stone cold and Eric burping to pre-recording burps, the only thing funny about this segment was watching the former president of WCW and a multi time former World Champion messing up the timing of the pre-recordings. Well at the end of it, Stone Cold is declared the winner, I’m sure he’ll be pleased about that.
Moving on, Test vs. Scott Steiner. Now after thinking about No Way Out and the Royal Rumble matches which Steiner fought against Triple H earlier this year, I was very tempted to fast-forward the match, or go for some munchies, or do anything not to watch the match, however I plucked up the courage and stayed where I was sat and watched the match. And to be fair, it wasn’t all that bad, well that’s what I thought anyway. The match starts off on shaky ground as Steiner trips off the ring apron as he intends to dive on Test but makes a mistake. Both men go to it, and start to brawl, and the match follows this trend right through. Test hits a pump handle slam and surprisingly Steiner hits a few suplexs. The ending of the match comes when Test grabs a chair, but hits it off the ropes and the chair smacks himself in the head, Steiner capitalises on that and hits his finishing move for the victory. This match was what I expected, slow, limited, full of brawling with little “wrestling”, personally I thought it was better than Steiner’s last two PPV matches, but that really wouldn’t be hard.
A little Austin Bischoff segment about the pie-eating contest. Moving on, we go to the Intercontinental Championship match, between Booker T and Christian. The match starts off with some nice wrestling; both Booker and Christian exchange moves, Booker T gains the advantage and rolls Christian up. The champion kicks out, and tries to toss Booker over the rope, Booker manages to drops an axe kick, then jumps to the top rope for a missile drop kick for the 2 count, Booker goes for the axe kick again, but the champ moves to the outside. Christian tries to get counted out intentionally, but the referee tells Christian if he is counted out, he will lose the title. Christian gets back in the rings, decks Booker with the title belt and gets disqualified. In my opinion this was a waste of a good match, the booker’s should have let it carry on for much longer and give it a clean finish. It’s a shame they managed to fit in numerous Austin/Bischoff segments, yet they can’t provide us with a decent IC Championship match, please some get your prioritise right.
Its now time for the Pie Eating contest, and we all knew that it was pretty obvious that Stone Cold would have a surprise in store for Eric when he hand picked the lady Eric would “eat pie” with. Anyway Bicshcoff came out gloating, Austin then introduced Mae Young as Eric’s “Pie”. Basically Mae hit on Eric, ended up giving him a Bronco Buster type manoeuvre in a thong type ring attire, most certainly worth hitting the trusty fast-forward button.
Moving on to the World Tag Team Championship match, nothing special at all here. Kane and RVD has been teased to split up, and it was about time to, when you have the one of the most popular guys on the Raw roster paired with Kane, who should be used as a legitimate main event guy, its common sense to have these as singles competitors, but we are talking about the WWE here. This was the first a big factor in the breaking up of the pair, and most people knew it was a sure fire cert that RVD and Kane would lose. The match was a pretty “lack-lustre” effort by both of the team, and to be honest I wasn’t interested in it at all. Again it seemed it should have been broadcast on RAW, rather than PPV. This match didn’t seem to offer anything.
Goldberg vs. Chris Jericho is next on the bill, and weren’t we all looking forward to this one? No? Well I don’t blame you, Goldberg had been uninspiring in his WWE role so far, not just due to Goldberg’s part either, and he hadn’t been booked to the best of his ability in my opinion. But would that all change now? I seriously doubt it. Anyway the match, match starts off with Goldberg gaining the advantage as he presses Jericho onto the top rope and kicks him out to the ringside. Goldberg then drops Chris onto the railing, setting him up for the spear, Jericho moves out the way as Big Bad Bill goes through the ring barrier. Jericho starts to work on the shoulder that Goldberg “injured” when he went through the barrier. Match goes back and forth for a while until Goldberg manages to power out of the Wall’s of Jericho, sets him up for a spear and then you guessed it, hits the Jackhammer and scores the victory. Not a bad match by any means, Jericho helped carry this one, but Goldberg wasn’t all bad. Have to say I did enjoy the match, but at the end of the day it was nothing mind blowing, and doesn’t in anyway justify the amounts of money Goldberg earns every week.
Next up, the match I was looking forward to the most, two of the greatest in-ring competitors of all time, as well as two of the most charismatic superstars of their eras, Ric Flair vs. Shawn Michaels. The feud between the two had been on and off for a while, with both men taking on one another as part of the six-man tag match at Backlash there was no love lost. But in recent weeks, Flair seemed to change, he was involved in a match with fellow Evolution member Triple H, and pre-hand to the match Shawn told Flair how he admired him and looked up to him. Flair and Michaels decided to have a match with one another at Badd Blood, but it would purely as friends. A tag team match was made, and Flair and Michaels teamed up against Orton and Triple H, but in true Flair style, he swerved the fans and attacked HBK, proving that Flair is and forever will be “the dirtiest player in the game”. So the match was on, Ric Flair vs. Shawn Michaels. The match starts off good, it has an old school presence, which for me really works. Everything was ok up until this point, then the ref gets bumped, both men do a roll-up pin fall and get a 2 count each. Flair goes up to the top rope but HBK hits a clothesline on the way down for his efforts, Shawn then hits a suplex and goes to the outside where a table is set up. Flair is put through the table courtesy of HBK and a flying splash from the top rope. HBK gets the two count, as he fights off interference from Randy Orton. Flair goes low on HBK and the ref, but HBK comes the come back with a flying elbow from the top rope, followed by a failed Sweet Chin Music attempt as Randy Orton nails HBK in the head with a chair, followed by a pin from Ric Flair. For me this match was ok, I expected something much better though. There is no question that both HBK and Ric Flair can pull out a first rate match when necessary, however on this occasion they failed, by no means was the match poor, just not as good as it could have been.
Thankfully we move on to the final segment of the Austin/Bischoff Redneck Triathlon. This segment is supposed to be a singing contest as Eric comes out and announces he will sing his own theme tune. The music hits and Eric starts to mime the words, and then Austin appears and announces that there will be another spin of the wheel, as both Austin and Eric cannot sing, the wheel lands on “Pig pen fun”, which the aim is to throw your opponent into a pigpen. And as you all guessed, Stone Cold comes down, beats Eric up, throws him into the pigpen and the rest is history. Pointless in every aspect.
Finally we get to the main event on the night. Kevin Nash challenges Triple H in a Hell in a Cell match with Mick Foley as special referee. The match was full of brawling with very limited wrestling, it was sluggish, but I really didn’t expect anything else. Both men used everything from chairs, screwdrivers, steel steps and barbed wire bats. The match was full of blood as all three Foley, Nash and big Kev juiced. Foley didn’t stick to his word, and he got in the champ’s face a fair bit. The ending came when Big Kev reversed a Pedigree attempt and hits a catapult into a barbered wire bat, which is set up. Nash then hits a powerbomb, which Foley counts a fast 2 count. Triple H recovers, hits a sledgehammer shot then nails the pedigree to get the victory. After the match Evolution comes down and beats down Foley. To be fair this match was painless enough, of course it wasn’t the best Hell in a Cell match, but nobody thought it would be, well apart from Jim Ross. It was a brawl from start to finish and it was watchable. Overall it was an acceptable main event, but please not something that should ever be repeated, I think this is the only time you’ll ever hear me say that I wish Kevin Nash won the title.
Very disappointing, the one match I was looking forward to was Flair and Shawn Michaels and that didn’t deliver. I’d seen Michaels deliver excellent matches with Triple H and Chris Jericho, and as for Flair, just few weeks prior to Badd Blood he had an outstanding match with Triple H, but neither man were able to excel to that level. The Austin and Bischoff segments really were a waste of time, the segments should have been shortened or not even put on the PPV, because all it did was get across the fact that Austin and Bischoff didn’t like one another, but we already knew that. The IC match annoyed me; it was too short with a very poor ending. The main event was ok, not the worst Hell in a Cell match, but certainly not the best. Overall it’s not the worst PPV I have seen, but not the way RAW should have kicked off their first separate PPV.
- Chris Jericho/Goldberg Promo
- Triple H/Kevin Nash Promo
- Hell in a Cell Comes Early
- Hell in a Cell – WWE Confidential
Sunday Night Heat
- Lilian Garcia interviews Christian
- Theodore R. Long, Christopher Nowinski & Rodney Mack confront D-Von Dudley
- Terri interviews Stone Cold & Eric Bischoff
- Ivory vs. Molly
- Dudley Boyz
- Theodore R. Long
- Rodney Mack & Christopher Nowinski
- Scott Steiner & Stacy Keibler
Fairly decent extras, a slight incentive for you to purchase the DVD rather than the VHS. I recommend you buy the DVD. It’s a nice watch; maybe if you haven’t seen it, I’d buy it, if you have seen it, its pointless getting it, unless you’re an avid collector. Either way, it’s not the worst PPV, but no where near the greatest.
Points: 6 / 10
UK: £14.99 (VHS) / £14.99 (DVD)
USA: $19.95 (VHS) / $22.46 (DVD)