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  • Connor Ewens

Every ECW Major Show Reviewed 'N' Ranked, Part 1

Updated: Sep 13, 2023

Professional wrestling has been represented in a variety of different art forms. The technical masterclasses, the compelling soap opera storytelling, the jawdropping Lucha Libre. There are various ways to skin a cat, but what if all you really craved was violence? In the late 90s, ECW was the answer.

In case you've been living under Dwayne Johnson, a brief history lesson. ECW was founded in 1992 by Tod Gordon as Eastern Championship Wrestling, and was initially an NWA affiliated promotion. A year later Paul Heyman came in as head booker replacing Eddie Gilbert and would later buy out Gordon to be the sole CEO by 1995. In 1994, due to some negative feelings about NWA and their plays of power, Heyman and Gordon booked Shane Douglas to throw down the NWA Championship after just winning it, declaring himself the ECW World Heavyweight Champion. Todd Gordon then renamed the company Extreme Championship Wrestling. Over the coming years, they would establish themselves as a part of the "big three" in American wrestling, alongside WCW and the WWF. Though they established a dedicated fan base and began to grew to a national status, they suffered severe financial troubles resulting in the loss of TV deals, PPV deals and ultimately their top stars. ECW eventually closed their doors in 2001, WWE finalised the purchasing of the rights in 2003. Although the company died, and the mid-00's revival almost tarnished the legacy, ECW will forever be remember as one of the most Iconic hardcore wrestling scenes in history.

Over a thread of blogs I will be reviewing and ranking every ECW PPV from worst to best. I have rated each match out of 5 stars, then I did some quick maths to generate an overall show percentage. A 100% show would mean every match is a 5 star classic so keep that in mind if percentage scores look low. This does mean that match quality is overwhelmingly significant to a shows performance, which I think is more than fair for a Supercard/PPV. Some matches are clipped and they'll not be included into the shows rating, and some "matches" I won't rate if i believe it qualifies more as a segment than a match. There is actually only 22 original ECW PPVs, so I've thrown in some extra shows to significantly bulk out the list, primarily Supercards between 1993 and 1997. There are some fantastic live shows I wanted to R'n'R but unfortunately not all of them have available footage. The weekly show Hardcore TV does show a lot of the highlights from the events but the heavy editing prevents me from providing a fair review. Theres a lot to get through so I'll keep reviews as brief as I can. With all that said, let's get ranking!

Honourable Mention- ECW/FMW Supershow, 12+13th December 1998

Unfortunately I have no footage to review this show but I will acknowledge it. ECW's first foray into Japan was with IWA Japan, the event being ECW vs IWA vs True FMW: Total War in 1996. ECW continued to develop a working relationship with various Japanese promotions, one of those being Frontier Martial-Arts Wrestling. Heyman sent 8 of his hardcore lads over to Japan for a jointly promoted Supershow in December of 1998. The event was part of the FMW's "Year End Sensation" Tour, featuring tournament matches to determine a number one Contender for FMW Brass Knuckles Heavyweight Championship, as well as the FMW Independent Heavyweight Championship. Also during ECW's visit, hardcore star Sabu attended a retirement ceremony for his uncle The Sheik (Not the iron one) and had a traditional Japanese wedding ceremony with his wife. How lovely.

On night 1 ECW reigned supreme in all their cross-promotion matches. The Dudley Boyz retained their Tag Titles against Goshogawara & Kuroda in just under 15 minutes. Shane Douglas defeated Gedo, yes current main booker of NJPW, to retain his ECW Heavyweight Championship. The main event saw RVD & Sabu team up to defeat FMW's franchise player Hayabusa & Tommy Dreamer. I was able to find highlight footage of this match. It's very rough footage, but the action I saw seemed like it would have been an enjoyable outing. Here is a link of you're interested.

Night 2 saw Shane Douglas retain the ECW Championship again, this time against Tommy Dreamer in about 12 minutes. The final ECW match on the card saw RVD & Sabu defeat the Dudley Boyz in 17 minutes to become the new ECW Tag Champions. Highlights of these matches can be seen on ECW Hardcore TV Episode 295, both matches are decent but nothing to go out of your way for.

#61: NWA Bloodfest Night 2, October 2nd 1993. 12.9%

ECW didn't begin finding their rhythm until 1994, everything before then fucking suuuuucked. The two day event was Heyman's second outing as ECW booker and was viewed as a first step towards his vision for what the company would become. Not a very good step here Paul, not at all.

The opening contest saw Johnny Hotbody & Tony Stetson successfully defend their ECW Tag Championships against Sandman & JT Smith, who were disqualified after Terry Funk came in chair swinging. Nothing worth talking about here, 0.5 stars.

Next we saw debuting Tommy Dreamer taking on the Tazmaniac, soon to be Taz, who only just debuted the night before. They both still had ways to go in terms in-ring work and character development but it was interesting to see their humble beginnings, they both performed well enough. The Tazmaniac gimmick is a little ridiculous. 1.25 stars.

Kevin Sullivan defeated Gino Caruso next but the match was clipped out so is a no rating from me. NR

World Title action next as JT Smith fails to defeat reigning champion Shane Douglas. Another match with nothing to it except Terry Funk involvement, throwing in the towel on behalf of Smith then proceeding to attack him. Terry Funk's turn is the only notable highlight of this. 0.25

The first and only match on this card worth any attention is when Badd Company (Pat Tanaka & Paul Diamond) bested Public Enemy in a solid tag match. Badd Company were formerly the Orient Express in WWF, and Paul Diamond was Max Moon! What a poor soul. He also won tag gold in Texas with Shawn Michaels, how different their paths would be. This was a decent outing by both teams, nothing too noteworthy but good fundamentals and some actual time to actually put on a wrestling match. 2

Chris Michaels defeated Rockin' Rebel by Disqualification, the match is clipped out apart from the finish, which I am more than happy about. NR

The Bad Breed (Axl & Ian Rotten) defeated Chad Austin & Don E. Allen in a crappy squash match. The Bad Breed are billed from Newcastle, England. That's where I'm from! I don't know why though, because they're from Baltimore, Maryland. I didn't think America knew what a Newcastle was until PAC debuted. A nothing squash that provides nothing except questions like "why am I watching this show?" 0

This next one is weird. Legends Don Muraco & Jimmy Snuka are set to face Badd Company I think, but Public Enemy attack them with chairs before Bad Breed then come out and Brawl with Public Enemy to the back. Snuka & Muraco win by forfeit in the easiest payday for them ever, and also sets up the scheduled main event. They show replays on this moment waaaay too much, they could have given that time to any of the other matches on the card and make them somewhat worth giving a shit about. No match = no rating.

Next Sabu defeats Shane Douglas to become the new ECW Heavyweight champion. The action here is a couple minutes long which is depressing, although sources say their match was actually more like 12 minutes, but the match doesnt look clipped? Sabu is another wrestler who debuted in the company the day before, 2 days in the job and already the top champion? Not a bad start I'd say. 0.25

Jimmy Snuka defeated Chad Austin next. Another squash here, Snuka couldn't even pretend to look like he wanted to be there. I can appreciate a good squash, but this is not one of those, it benefits no one except Snuka who I assume got a nice payday. 0

Our main event is a triple tag steel cage match featuring Bad Breed, Badd Company & Public Enemy. Just a few minutes of bad brawling before the Enemy get the win. A fitting end to this show really, this apparently went 22 MINUTES but again it doesn't appear clipped, maybe this was just the finish? Well it sucked anyways so have a 0.25 on me.

Overall, pitiful show. However, this wasn't meant to be watched as a full show, sorry paying attendance. This is clearly a 2-day taping event to roll out footage for TV for the next few weeks. That's the only reasonable justification for this. To think I'm only halfway through this show is a really painful thought.

MOTN: Badd Company v Public Enemy

#60: Super Summer Sizzler Spectacular, June 19th 1993. 13.1%

People say "You always remember your first", in ECW's case they hope that isn't a mantra to live by. Sticking with 1993 we have ECW's first ever supercard show, with an unnecessarily long title. Eddie Gilbert is in charge of creative at this point, and yeah I can see why he was ousted out soon enough. Eddie wanted Memphis-style wrestling, which already existed in droves and led to his falling out and departure from the company. That and hitting on Tod Gordon's wife and lying about a job offer for a pay rise, that will do it.

Jimmy Snuka retained his ECW Television Championship against JT Smith in an uninspiring contest. Snuka threw the title down on the mat as he entered, giving off the impression that he didn't really want to be there. Snuka gave that impression a lot in the 90s, just chasing paychecks. I guess it was short, that's all I can see good in this. 0.25

Tony Stetson defeated Larry Winters in a first blood match. Positives first, it was better than the previous match. Shame it still sucked though. Another short, empty match with two dudes just punching each other in the head. Rockin' Rebel would come out to distract the referee whilst Stetson clobbers Winters with a chain wrapped hand, even though the match was already no DQ. I had to learn to condition myself to dumb ECW booking to survive the creation of this blog. 0.5

Next up, a cat fight humiliation match. Why is it humiliating you ask? Not just because you lose by having your clothes stripped off you, but humiliating that this was booked in the first place. Miss Peaches defeated Terrible Tigra, if you really care. Post match Stetson & Rebel came out and ripped off a "mysterious woman's" shirt. Hooray for expoiltation. 0

What's better than 1 terrible Jimmy Snuka match? Bloody two of them! Snuka defends his title against Tommy Cairo, I guess this one is slightly better than the last but that's like choosing if you want to drown in a public pool or a private pool. I'm still drowning either way. Snuka retains after Cairo is tripped up by Paul E. Dangerously (Paul Heyman's OG persona) and falls victim to the worst leverage pin I've ever seen. Ugh. Fun fact, Tommy Cairo was 1 of only 2 people to win the ECW Pennsylvania Championship, a title that existed for 4 months. 0.25

Rockin' Rebel defeats The Sandman in a Philadelphia street fight. The most entertaining thing on the show so far, but the bar is fucking low at this point. A quick little brawl that ended after another "mysterious woman" debuted and sprayed Sandman in the eyes with something, Rebel rolls him up. That woman was Tammy Sytch AKA Sunny. 1

The legendary Dick Murdoch defeated Dark Patriot II in a, you guessed it, boring but short match up. This was Murdochs only ECW appearance, he would pass away 3 years later due to a heart attack. He's a legend of the business, though no one will be celebrating his work anytime soon, thanks to numerous allegations of racism, including being an actually KKK affiliate. Big yikes. 0.5

Finally we see a match that reaches the 10 minute mark, although I wish it didn't. Sal Bellomo, Stevie Wonderful & Super Destroyer #1 defeated the ECW Tag Champions the Suicide Blondes (Sir Johnny Hotbody & Sir Richard Michaels) who teamed with Hunter Q Robins III. Still crappy but still the second best thing on the show at this point. I don't really understand Sal Bellomo, nor do I want to. Main significance of this match is a debuting Joey Styles commentating on this match. I wonder if he sticks around in ECW for very long. 0.75

Main event time, we have the Legendary Terry Funk facing the head booker Eddie Gilbert, with assistant booker Paul E. Dangerously in his corner. This is a "Texas Chain Match Massacre", which is basically a strap match but with a chain, the winner would be named the King of Philadelphia. Neither of these men are from Philly, so surely the booker would put over his opponent right? Wrong! Not much "wrestling" going on but it was a somewhat captivating brawl. Spoiler alert, I hate strap matches. I think they're pretty dumb and it's rare they're anything other than fine. This was pretty much just fine, I did quite like the finish of replacing the bumped referee with a crooked one. If you like a nice ol' brawl this is exactly that. 2

Overall, not even the mediocre main event can save this show from being plain awful. There's nothing about this show that I would recommend, the only good thing to come out of it is the introduction of Joey Styles.

MOTN: Funk v Gilbert

#59: Ultraclash, September 18th 1993. 15%

Still in 1993 unfortunately, don't worry there's only one more show after this to endure. Ultraclash was Paul Heyman's first supercard as head of creative, and is most notable for the debut of Ian Rotten and Public Enemy, as well as Joey Styles being full time commentary for ECW shows. Unfortunately, Styles is still green to it and hasn't perfected his Iconic style and skill just yet, so buckle up for some weak lines for the time being.

Our opening contest is the Public Enemy (Johnny Grunge & Rocco Rock, how very 90s) defeating Ian Rotten & Jason Knight. Defeating is an understatement. They mauled them. No offence given by the losers who get their arses handed to them. It was a strong way to introduce a new team, a team very important to ECW's early success. I enjoyed most of the offence that was on show here. 0.75

Our next match is for the incredibly prestigious ECW Pennsylvania Championship. Former champion "Ironman" Tommy Cairo looking to defeat "Hitman" Tony Stetson. Tony mate, you need a new nickname. Calling yourself Hitman, especially in the early 90's, is a dumb move. The boys had some time but didn't make much use of it, finish came after Hunter Q Robins III distracted the referee leading to "Shitman" cracking Cairo with the belt to win. Typical screwy finish, I'm sure we won't see many more of those in this thread... 0.5

Up next, the battle of the Super Destroyers! SD 1 fights his partner SD 2 in a slow, mindnumbing "mask vs mask" match. I don't care how much Styles tries to convince me other wise, these two look way to similar since they have identical ring gear. I wouldn't have been able to tell then apart. The good Super Destroyer won, which is number 1, I think. Fun fact, SD 1 is called AJ Petrucci and he is the cousin of avid baby kicker Gene Snitsky. That fact is more interestng than this match will ever be. 0.25

Well it can only be up from here I suppose, and up we go indeed into the daunting heights of a scaffold match. This is another match stipulation that completely sucks, and I really don't think this is debatable. However, I will say this is probably the best scaffold match I've seen, I'm looking at you Starrcade 86 & 87. Dark Patriot & JT Smith go nuts to the wall with brawling, bumping and even a dropkick. Then, Patriot throws Smith down to the ring in a CRAZY bump to win the match. Have a star on me lads, you've earned it. 1

Kevin Sullivan, Abdullah the Butcher, Stan Hansen & Terry Funk in a tag team bunkhouse match? 4 brawlers who specialise in ass whippings? Should be fun I thought. I was wrong. This was probably only fun to watch live, all 4 of these men are way past their prime and just had a messy anything goes brawl which ended in a DQ when Eddie Gilbert attacked. What? Then Sullivan and Abdullah started fighting each other. What? Yeah, not great. 0.5

Following that car wreck, an intergender battle Royal for $5,000. This was fucking atrocious. It was nice to see the women eliminate the men, however those men were 3 wetwipes. Sherri eliminated herself chasing after a man. Angel decided to stand on the tops and taunt, so Tigra gave her a weak nudge over to win. This was just awful, I never want to talk about this ever again. 0

I previously stated that I thought strap matches sucked, but that doesn't mean they can't be a relatively enjoyable watch sometimes. This one here though, not good at all. Sal Bellomo defeated Richard Michaels in a strap match that made me wish I was in a strap match with Vader, and brutally murdered. 0.25

ECW never really liked putting their world Championship on last. I'd like to say it's so the best match was always on last but that often wasn't the case. Tonight it was though. "Fabulous" Shane Douglas retained the Heavyweight Championship against Sandman in a somewhat competent showcase but it was short, scrappy and screwy. The 3 S's ECW lived by. 0.75

Main event time and finally I was treated to an ECW match that I actually enjoyed watching. The Headhunters faced off against Miguel Perez & Crash the Terminator in a baseball match. Crash is none other than grade A scumbag, Bill DeMott. After a 10 count all four rushed the ring to possess the baseball bat, and proceeded to beat the piss out of each other for just under 10 minutes. The lack of production quality made it hard to follow at times but what was visible was great fun. Headhunters claimed victory with a splendid moonsault. Probably overrating this match, but due to a lot of crap I've had to sit through, this was a very pleasant watch indeed. 2.75

Overall, a bad show with a somewhat enjoyable finale, but way too many post-match brawls diluted the effectiveness of them. Not a great start under the Heyman regime.

MOTN: Baseball Tag Match

#58: Barbed Wire, Hoodies & Chokeslams, June 17th 1995. 15.6%

Taking a quick break away from 1993, we travel forward in time 2 years and ECW are deep into their new persona as Extreme Championship Wrestling. 1995 gifted us lucky marks with some fantastic displays of skill and high risk action, unfortunately this show wasn't one of them.

Our opening contest sees the Broadstreet Bully (we know him as Tony Stetson) squash the New Jersey Devil in seconds. This is because of hockey, apparently, some revenge for Philly losing in the Stanley Cup to the NJ Devils. To further the revenge, 911 comes out and chokeslams the devil 4 times. This match earns the amount of stars equal to how much I care for hockey. 0

Following that, we have the 500 pound Val Puccio being defeated by our boy Mikey Whipwreck. Factoid for ya, Val & his brother Tony once defeated a Steamboat to win tag gold. No it wasn't Ricky, it was Vic, but a glow up on Val's resume. A terrible match, but from a psychology standpoint Mikey is smart as hell. Dodge, dick punches, DDT. The original 3D. 0

Next up, Hack Meyers and the Vampire Warrior. Will we get a good match on this show? Probably not. Vampire Warrior would gain popularity as Gangrel in future a man so dedicated to his gimmick he got dental implants. Meyers isn't a spectacular wrestler but he was very over with the ECW faithful. The Warrior steamrolls Meyers in a couple of minutes ending with a DDT, at least I got some level of enjoyment from this encounter. 0.25

The next match is an impromptu match as Stevie Richards w/ Vampire Warrior interrupts Dreamers promo, in an attempt to separate Dreamer from his ally Luna Vachon, who is the Warriors real life wife. They have a brawl, its a bit of fun but nothing noteworthy, Dreamer wins with a DDT through a table. That's 3 matches in a row with the same finishing move. 1.5

"Jungle" Jim Steele gets squashed by 911 in the next match. Steele failed to do any good in WCW but had reasonable success in All-Japan. The fans hated him, he was a weird knock-off Jimmy Snuka. 911 pins him after 1 chokeslam, and gives him 4 more dedicated to various people including "crooked" referee Bill Alfonso. A segment to pop the crowd and nothing more. 0

Well, things take a weird turn here. Beulah McGillicutty takes on Luna Vachon. Beulah is Tommy's real life wife, married since 2002. Beulah became Raven's valet as she was brought in to get revenge on Dreamer for rejecting her in summer camp back in the day. Beulah wins after Luna takes a nasty chair shot by Richards and is pinned immediately. Then, Dreamer makes the save but he gets blasted and 3 of his fingers get broken! The crowd are somewhat mixed on this. They then handcuff Luna in a crucifix position outside of the ring. This does scream more of a segment than a match, but I disliked it enough that I'm going to give it a fat 0.

The scheduled match up is Raven and the Pitbulls (Gary Wolfe & Anthony Durante) against Taz, 2 Cold Scorpio & Tommy Dreamer, but Dreamer's injured. A 3 on 2 match here and its alright at moments. Scorpio is beaten down 3 on 1 until Taz appears and suplexes everyone. The finish comes when a female fan with a Stevie Richards sign lures him over to flirt. This pisses off Raven who takes his leave with Richards, leaving the Pitbulls to suffer defeat. Sloppy mostly but there was some stuff here I enjoyed. 2

Public Enemy is due to face Axl Rotten and a mystery partner. He chooses his brother Ian, even though they've been feuding in gorey matches for a while. Bill Alfonso puts a stop to this because they lost a tag team match a year ago preventing them from ever teaming again. The Rottens decide to beat the blood and piss out of each other, I guess that's fine, then the Gangstas debut attacking Public Enemy. A fine segment that goes a little long. If you didn't know, the Gangstas are Mustafa Saed and the Infamous New Jack. We have plenty more of him to talk about unfortunately.

A Barbed wire match for the ECW Championship closes the show, Sandman defending his title against Cactus Jack. I was excited about this one, and it was going pretty well until the finish. A lovely, hardcore contest seemed to culminate with Cactus Jack winning the ECW gold after Sandman failed to get up at the count of 10. Hooray! But wait, shenanigans! Bill Alfonso returns and declares the title cannot change hands under these conditions and restarts the match. Then Sandman chokes Jack out, for Alfonso to rule him unable to continue. Fucking bullshit. 2.5

Overall, another crap show, what did you expect? Easily the worst show from 1995 with only the debut of the Gangstas anything meaningful to come out of it. I can't really say that was a good thing either.

MOTN: Sandman v Cactus Jack

#57: December to Dismember, December 3rd 2006. 24.2%

Oh you thought I wasn't going to include WWECW? Ha ha ha, yep! As much as it pains me to talk about this show, it means I am able to talk about one of my favourite PPVs possibly ever. Pre-warning, a lot of naughty words coming up because I fucking hate this show, as do most sane people. After the success that was ECW One Night Stand in 2005, WWE revitalised ECW as the third brand in their company and took the slowest and longest piss all over it. Ratings started good but as soon as the fans realised what it was going to be, a C show for developmental talent, the ratings plummeted. Gone was the charm that ECW was renowned for, matches only featured weapons if it was specified and they bloody got rid of Joey Styles on commentary, for fucks sake! WWECW lasted until 2010 before it was mercifully shut down. The biggest nail in the coffin was this show, the first and only WWECW PPV, December to Dismember. How bad was it? Enough for Paul Heyman to get fired, it also has the worst PPV buy rate in WWE history, so yeah, bad.

Ironically the show got off to a good start, when MNM faced off against the Hardy Boys. Both teams weren't a part of ECW, and both teams also weren't regularly teaming together anymore. The most thrown together match on the card, yet somehow the best. Not really a surprise given the talent involved. It maybe went a little too long but still a really solid match and good effort by all involved. All downhill from here. 3.25

Matt Striker faces off against ECW legend Balls Mahoney. I'm honestly surprised they didn't just job Balls to Striker. A bad match with no real heat except the fans chanting "Balls" when Mahoney threw punches. Striker did some okay heelwork before this match but couldn't save the crap following. Balls wins clean after a spinebuster, at least it was short. 0.5

Before the next match, Sabu was wrote out of the main event after a Backstage assault. He was later replaced by none other than... Hardcore Holly. Woopdi-fucking-doo.

Elijah Burke teams up with Sylvester Terkay next to face more ECW icons FBI (Little Guido & Tony Marmaluke). Another boring match, purely to put over the new talent. Burke had little success in WWE, he's done more for himself as Pope in the NWA. Terkay had more success as a TNA announcer than a wrestler, which pretty much sums that up. Another short match with no heat, it felt like a TV match and really reflected the lack of roster depth in ECW. 1

Up next, Daivari with The Great Kahli in his corner defeats the innovator of violence Tommy Dreamer in another short match. Fucking excellent. A filler match that just stalled for time, with some bland offence in between. Don't get me wrong, Dreamer can work but he's always at his best when he's in a brawl, not in this boring shit. Daivari gets a roll up win because why not. 0.5

Somehow this show manages to reach new lows in the next match, as Mike Knox teams with Kelly Kelly to fight Kevin Thorn and his piece Ariel. Vince must have read those Twilight books. Kelly² was a 19 year old doing strip teases on TV, how very WWE, and is Knox's kayfabe girlfriend, although he's rather abusive. Kelly Kelly would go on to be a Diva's Champion and a 24/7 champion, unequivocally the 2 shittiest belt designs ever. Talking about shit, this match was exactly that. Poor in ring work and Kelly had no offence because she hadn't been trained much. The crowd only reacted once, and that was when Ariel pinned Kelly in the corner by her foot, showing a small amount of arse in the process. Yep. Knox abandoned Kelly for storyline progression reasons and she eats an STO to lose. 8 fucking minutes that I'll never get back. Sandman would come out to save Kelly from a post match beatdown, in what was the best part of this show outside of the opener. 0

Here we are girls and boys, the main event of this evening. The extreme elimination Chamber match, hyped up by Paul Heyman just beforehand which just makes it even more laughable how it ends up. We have all your favourite extreme wrestlers involved here; RVD, CM Punk, erm, Test, Hardcore Holly, Bobby Lashley and the greatest ECW champion of all time, Big Show. Each chamber had a weapon in it, because extreme. Now, I was 8 years old when this show aired. My favourites were RVD and CM Punk because they looked cool and did cool moves. I'm sure they were pretty much everyone's favourite, so I'm sure they'll get a good showing. It started off well, RVD and Holly mixed it up and then Punk entered next and the offence picked up and got some crowd reactions. Test entered number 4, then things went off the rails a bit. RVD eliminates Punk first, fucking what when?! Future star of the company eliminated by a face to a chorus of boos. BOO YOU VINCE. Then Test pins Holly, the referee doesn't count 3, Holly lies there like he has sleep paralysis and gets rolled out and eliminated. That was weird. Then Test eliminates RVD and waits around for another entrant to arrive. I mean, that elbow drop was fucking sick, but it doesn't make up for the two only popular members of the match being eliminated before everyone is even in the match! Lashley next, the Riot Squad who are ringside for "protection" prevents him from leaving so he smashes his way out with the table. Then he hits a few moves and eliminates Test, then stands for a minute waiting for Big Show. He comes in, tries to use his Barbed Wire bat but fails, few more moves then Lashley Spears him for the win. What a pile of shit this was. The weapons were barely used, they didn't even use the fucking TABLE! Poor booking, poor ring work post-elbow drop, poor match. It was a 25 minute attempt to get Bobby Lashley over and guess what? It was a fucking failure. Great job WWE. I'd rate this lower if I could but the first third of the match was actually entertaining. 2

Overall, fuck this show. ECW One Night Stand was a love letter to a beloved promotion that many fans had fond memories of. If that was a love letter, this was a hate letter. A hate letter that Vince McMahon took a shit in and then posted it to your mum.

MOTN: MNM v Hardy Boyz

#56: NWA Bloodfest Night 1, October 1st 1993. 24.4%

Once more unto the breach my friends, our last show of 1993 and we return to NWA Bloodfest. The show was also advertised as Bloodfeast, but I think Bloodfest sounds better. As I mentioned earlier this 2-day event was blatantly to generate matches for Hardcore TV, but that doesn't make up for how trash the action is.

First up the debuting team of the Bad Breed (Ian & Axl Rotten) taking on Chad Austin & Todd Shaw. A couple of offensive movies by Austin but Bad Breed dominate the rest of the match. Action isn't awful but also not exciting. The Bad Breed win decisively. 0.75

The next match sees the Rockin' Rebel defeat Don E. Allen, but its clipped up, I don't mind. Fuck the Rockin' Rebel. If you know, you know. NR

Next on the agenda, we see Public Enemy take on Gino Caruso & Silver Jet. I found no information on the Silver Jet. Little information on Gino's wrestling career but he is the founder & owner of East Coast Professional Wrestling. Not a lot here, few slow moves and a quick victory for the Public Enemy. 0.5

Malia Hoksana takes on Molly McShane. Hoksana went on the compete in WCW, WWF, TNA & SHINE. She even won the NWA Women's Championship in a weird scenario. She beat Debbie Combs for the belt, however Combs would continue to defend the belt even though Bambi was recognised as the NWA Women's Champion by Jim Crockett. Combs would be stripped of the title and they wouldn't crown a new champion for 4 years. The match is actually pretty solid, the best technical showing on the card. Its not very long though, and it just sorta ends, but I appreciate the efforts by both women. 1

The Rotten Brothers are back again, this time against Badd Company. Solid tag action here, mainly carried by Diamond & Tanaka I will admit but it was somewhat enjoyable. Badd Company get the win. 2

The Sandman defeats Metal Maniac in a quick match. Weird seeing Sandman in wrestling gear, being a surfer. Quick squash to put over The Sandman. 0.5

6-man tag match next packed with legends. Abdullah the Butcher, JT Smith & Terry Funk take on Jimmy Snuka, Kevin Sullivan & Don Muraco. Just a big messy brawl, ending with a roll up win for team Funk. It's captivating in the same way a car crash is. Not great. 0.5

Double debut match next, we see the Tazmaniac against Sabu, who is wheeled out in restraints and just goes fucking mental. This was great fun. Some solid wrestling and fun spots by Sabu, unfortunate that the table broke under Taz but the action and creative chaos made up for it. Easily the best thing on this show. Sabu gets the win, and continues to go mental before being restrained and wheeled off again. 2.5

Tony Stetson & Johnny Hotbody defeat Badd Company to retain the ECW Tag Team Championships but it was clipped so I won't review it. NR

Rockin' Rebel defeats Chris Michaels, again its clipped. NR

Apparently Kevin Sullivan & Abdullah the Butcher fought to a no contest but there's no footage of this. NR

Our main event of the night, a steel cage match for the ECW TV Championship between Terry Funk & Jimmy Snuka. Not a bad match, but certainly not a good match. I wasn't expecting much out of a 90's Jimmy Snuka match. Terry Funk escapes the cage rather abruptly and wins the title. I'm happy Funk took the title, he is more capable of having good matches with Wrestlers compared to Snuka. 2

Overall, a bad show as I expected. However, the debut of soon to be Taz & Sabu was exciting and really set the tone for their futures in the company.

MOTN: Sabu v Tazmaniac

#55: When Worlds Collide, May 14th 1994. 25%

The title of this show is referenced to a deal ECW made with WCW, as WCW talent featured in the main event. Initially, WCW proposed a cross-promotional event for their Slamboree PPV. The deal ended up being a trade of talent, Bobby Eaton & Arn Anderson to feature here in exchange for Terry Funk and others to appear on WCW television. However, things went sour after ECW sued WCW for copyright infringement when they also named an event "When Worlds Collide". The case was settled out of court, part of that agreement was that later in the year Kevin Sullivan, Sherri Martel & Steve Austin would appear for ECW. Brian Pillman would replace Austin in the deal, I suspect due to Austin having an injury. This show also inspired WWE to name their "Worlds Collide" shows since 2019.

Our opener sees Tommy Dreamer defeat the Rockin' Rebel. Dreamer still rocking the suspenders look, which is a bold choice. The fans aren't fully on board with Dreamer yet, more seem to dislike him than support him but that obviously changes over time. This was bland but short and adequately worked. 1

We're treated to another 911 match next who faces Mikey Whipwreck to try win the ECW TV Championship. Yes, 911 still only knows one move and he will continue to only know one move. He chokeslams Mikey a few times before chokeslamming the referee for a DQ finish. Some may see this as more of a segment than a match but I'm still going to rate it, because I think it sucked. It did get 911 over as a destructive force and Mikey as a sympathetic face, but also makes 911 look like an idiot for failing to win the gold. I do enjoy Mikey's flukey title reign but there's better ways to do it than this. The crowd LOVED this segment. I didn't. 0

Geriatric Warfare next as we see Jimmy Snuka take on Kevin Sullivan. An appearance from Sandman distracts Sullivan as he convinces big Kev's manager Woman to leave him aiming for her to be his partner in his upcoming match. This provides Snuka an opportunity to win. Not very well worked but it was entertaining seeing Snuka get his ass beat. This is a pivotal moment as Woman would begin a long time partnership with Sandman going forward. 1

We see more of Sandman & Woman next who tag together against Tommy Cairo & Peaches. To catch you up, Peaches is Sandmans wife. Sandman accidently attacked Peaches whilst blinded, saw Tommy consoling her so attacked him, found out Peaches was having an affair with Tommy, Sandman was revealed to be a part-time pimp, says he's going to start charging Tommy if he's going to sleep with Peaches so much. It goes on. This is a "Singapore Canes" match (a reference to controversy where a US student was caned as punishment in Singapore which is slightly risqué) and the winners get to cane the losers 6 times. A mess of a match which ends with Peaches covering an unconscious Sandman. Sandman is caned thrice before Woman makes the save, Sandman proceeds to cane the SHIT out of Cairo and inadvertently hits Peaches too. Woman hits Peaches, Sandman has a smoke and they take their leave. Bad match but it was the beginning of the Sandman/Woman partnership, as well as Sandman carrying a cane with him all the time. Good story development, poor everything else. 0.75

Battle of the animals here as The Pitbull fights The Tazmaniac. A decent little showing if a little uninspired. The fans chanting "Shitbull" was a nice touch. Relatively competent but hard to call enjoyable. 1.5

A 4 on 3 Handicap Elimination Match next sees JT Smith team with three Bruise Brothers to face Shane Douglas, Mr Hughes & Public Enemy. This is a big tangle of a few storyline which is going to take too much time to explain and it really isn't worth it. The "heels" utilise the numbers game well until it spills out to a brawl to the back which leads to the referee counting out all the brawlers. 4 people counted out at once? Hmm. 2 on 1 now, and this really got JT Smith as an underdog. He got a lucky pin eliminating Rocco Rock, then manages another lucky pin over Johnny Grunge to win! I disagree with this booking. Smith would have looked good even in defeat, I think this was damaging to the tag Champions to fuck this up so badly. Not a very good match but not as bad as others feel about it. 1

Boy this hasn't been a good show, but thank god we have some reliable talent in our main event. Bobby Eaton teams with Sabu to take on Terry Funk & Arn Anderson. Everyone is on form here, especially Arn & Terry. Hell, even Sabu busts out more solid wrasslin' than usual. A very well worked match that the crowd was HOT for. A nice blend of chaotic brawling and wrestling psychology throughout, the Public Enemy run in made sense with the story going on between them and Funk. A good Swerve ending too as AA turns on Funk after Terry accidentally clocked him with a chair, targeting his knee viciously. Sabu submits Terry with a half crab. The show ends with a set up for Public Enemy vs Terry & Dory Funk. A good match that saves this show from being even worse. 3.5

Overall, bad, obviously. But, a good main event at least. I think the main event is worth a watch since this was Arn Anderson's only appearance in ECW, he and Eaton really brought out the best in Sabu, Terry Funk looked fantastic.

MOTN: Sabu & Eaton v AA & Funk

#54: Hardcore Heaven, August 13th 1994. 26.7%

1994 was a pivotal year for ECW. Only 2 weeks after this event, Shane Douglas would infamously win the NWA Championship before ditching it. A great promo and probably Shane Douglas' most career-defining moment. This would be the last supercard under Eastern Championship Wrestling. 1994 wasn't a great year for ECW shows, in fairness 1994 wasn't great for many Wrestling promotions. We did see some good matches but not many good shows, this is the worst of them all. This is the inaugural Hardcore Heaven show, and would become a yearly tradition for ECW and eventually become one of their PPV's. Let's get into it.

Hack Meyers faces Rockin' Rebel in the opener. Meyers is only just beginning to get over with the "SHAH" chants in 1994. Not much of a match, very simplistic and dull but it was well executed for the most part. 1

Next up we have Chad Austin facing off against Tommy Cairo. Cairo would leave ECW within a year, I assume due to his slide down the card, you can tell it effected his performance here. Austin put in a solid showing but hard to piece together anything of substance in 4 minutes against a demotivated opponent. Austin wins with a leverage pin. 0.75

Mikey Whipwreck takes on Jason in a no DQ match for the TV Championship next, previously known as Jason Knight. Aren't all ECW matches no DQ matches? I always liked watching Mikey wrestle, he started off as a plucky underdog who took a beating and got fluke wins with a few moves before morphing into a competent performer. This was an enjoyable match for the most part but the ending spoiled it. The ref counted a 3 count for Mikey, but the Pitbulls come out and attacks Mikey before the referee calls for the bell and puts Jason over Mikey. Then the referee forgets the original 3-count and makes another, and we have a new champion. I get he's supposed to be too dazed after a ref bump but the finish still sucked. 2.25

The next match starts immediately after the previous, as Taz & Jimmy Snuka run out to fight the Pitbulls. This ended in under a minute after a suplex and a superfly splash to win. Barely a match, but the crowd popped for it. 0.25

Battle of the giants now, 911 takes on Mr Hughes. I don't think I've watched a Mr Hughes match that I enjoyed. Shane Douglas before the match hypes up Hughes, and Joey Styles mentions he has wrestled Lawrence Taylor before which is interesting because this is before his Wrestlemania main event. I never knew he wrestled prior that match. Not a good match at all, though the fans were really into 911 at this point. Predictably 911 hits the one move he knows to win. 0.25

Singapore Cane match between future hardcore legends Tommy Dreamer & Sandman. Dreamer attacks before the bell, attacking everyone including the referee with a cane and gets disqualified. The fuck? Woman revived Sandman with a cigarette which was pretty funny but this segment was dogshit. 0

"Basebrawl" match next, which is the same as the baseball match I covered at Ultraclash. Public Enemy face off against Bad Breed. This is okay, the action had some fun moments but it was mainly a big ol' walk and brawl around the arena. The match quality is hurt by the poor production quality at this time. This is definitely one of those matches better to watch in person than on TV. 2

Up next is easily the match of the night, Sabu takes on 2 Cold Scorpio. This was good fun. Sabu was such an unreliable performer at times, captivating spots which took balls but there was a real dependence on his opponent to keep the match from going into chaos mode. Sabu gets a win with a chair-assisted slingshot leg drop, which I believe Joey calls an Arabian Facebuster. Good action far superior to anything else on this show. 3.5

The main event I had high expectations for, and I was massively let down. Legends of the hardcore scene Terry Funk & Cactus Jack. This had all of the promise of a fun, brawling main event but its ruined after a few minutes by the Public Enemy who attack Funk to help Cactus win. Cactus objects and gets attacked himself. Sucky no contest finish. 2

BUT, its almost nearly made up for when we have one of the most iconic show endings occur. Jack & Funk ask for some chairs. The fans threw ALL the chairs, near enough anyways, completely burying the Public Enemy. The ring announcer pleads with the audience to stop and they do, eventually. A fantastic, completely unscripted way for the show to end.

Overall, not a show I'd recommend but if you haven't seen footage of the end of this show, go watch it. It's amazing. Scorpio & Sabu put on a good showing but the rest of the show isn't worth your time.

MOTN: Sabu v Scorpio

#53: The Night The Line Was Crossed, February 5th 1994. 27.1%

The first ECW Supercard of 1994 was headlined by a 3-way dance world title match which really drew eyes to ECW. They showed the entirety of the match across 1 full episode of TV which was nearly unheard of. This match would also help popularise a 3-way dance as a match type, and was the precursor for what we know nowadays as a triple threat. Tommy Dreamer would go on record saying this show was a turning point for ECW. Shane Douglas would even call this match the first he recalls feeling good about. Does the rest of the show hold up to this standard? You can hazard a guess at that.

Opening match, usually a way to hype up the crowd, sees Sal Bellomo face Mr Hughes. Well shit. Really bad way to start here. A elongated squash to put over Mr Hughes. I never really rated Big Sal but he had relative success as part of the NWA. This match is not a match he should be remembered by. 0

Double dog collar match next, Sandman and Tommy Cairo teaming to face the Pitbull & Rockin' Rebel. Sandman had a surfer gimmick before he was the beer drinking, cigarette smoking badass we all know him for. Good career change I say. This Pitbull is Gary Wolfe aka #1 before he got himself a fellow pitbull partner. Crazy violence throughout the match, good fun that is again hurt by the lack of camerawork. Crowd enjoyed it, I did for the most part even if it was a bit janky in places. Sandman and Ciaro win with a nice finish, Sandman using the chain to prevent Wolfe from kicking out. I'll give it a 2.

No rules match next, a bit redundant in ECW. Public Enemy defeat the Bruise Brothers (Don & Ron Bruise) The Bruise Bros were the Blu Brothers in the WWF, before becoming 8-ball & Skull as a part of the DOA. Another match damaged by poor production but the brawling was fun, Public Enemy going over after about 8 minutes. 2

Tommy Dreamer faces Jimmy Snuka next. The fans chanted boring. They were right. 10 minutes of rest holds and unenthusiastic offence from Snuka. Dreamer did look strong taking a superfly splash and kicking out, but this match was really bad. Snuka wins and continues his assault after the match, including attack the ref and Tod Gordon. Didn't care for any of this. 0

Oh great, more shit. Pat Tanaka teams with The Sheik to face the Tazmaniac & Kevin Sullivan. I understand bolstering the card with legends to draw crowds, but honestly is it worth it when this is what we get? The Sheik is a legend but he is a fossil, he could barely get around. Mindless brawling, a few fireballs because why the fuck not, then a roll up win by Tanaka. This benefited no one, except those who got paid. Fun fact, The Sheik not only trained his relative Sabu, but also RVD. 0

Luckily for us, it's only improvements from here forward. Next up we have JT Smith facing Mike Awesome. This was very short but my god did they make use of their time. ECW should have signed Awesome here and now, not 3 years later. Awesome dominates but Smith got the win with a small package win. Awesome looked like the shit here, especially destroying Smith more after the match. Smith even looked like a talented face out of this. Good booking and though it is short it gets thumbs up from me. Awesome broke the ring ropes climbing to the top turnbuckle which damaged the segment slightly but he recovered and layed out the referee. Fun stuff. 2.5

It is time for the main event. Terry Funk, Shane Douglas & Sabu in a 3-way dance for the ECW World Championship. It goes to a 60 minute time limit draw. I applaud the efforts by all 3 they really put in a showing, especially Terry Funk. He and Douglas are the main focus here as Sabu is taken out for a large portion of the match. Whilst disappointing it makes sense, he was removed with a kayfabe injury and returned probably to not have him run out of spots before the time is up. It's a good match, I'm sure it was a classic at the time but it doesn't hold up quite as well 30 years later. Some good storytelling but it does drag on, the run ins and shenanigans really feel like filler. The crowd gives the Wrestlers a standing ovation post match as Funk holds on to his gold. 3

Overall, a weird show. Half of the action was decent, half of the action was utter crap. The main event is hard to recommend because of its run time, and although I gave it a 3 I don't think it's worth an hour of your day.

MOTN: 3 Way Dance

#52: Living Dangerously, March 12th 2000. 28.3%

By the time 2000 came around, ECW was in rough financial shape. Better quality production and overall more consistent ringwork, however poor financial management meant the company was hemorrhaging money and losing talent. Sabu, Taz, Mike Awesome were all big main event stars who didn't stick around in 2000, ECW was in need of creating new main event stars. Especially here, because the TV champion RVD got injured and had to vacate the belt. This was the second PPV of the year for Heyman's hardcore hooligans, featuring a tournament to crown a new TV champion.

After a weird promo by the Sinister Minister talking about the 7 deadly sins, Steve Corino baits out Sandman leading to an ambush by the Network, a stable created around the time ECW began on TNN. Wrestling legend Dusty Rhodes would come out for the save and kick off the first match of the night, Rhodes and Corino in a texas bullrope match. Was this a good match? Not really. But it means a bit more than that. This was Dusty's first match in 5 years, he had fallen on hard times and wanted to continue to work to support his family. In a recent day promo with Paul Heyman, Cody Rhodes credits Paul for helping his dad gain his confidence back and turn the tide for the Rhodes family. If that is the case, props to Heyman. Sure the match ain't much but the crowd were super hot for Rhodes, and Corino worked his ass off to keep the match looking too bad. Rhodes wins after a chair shot to Corino's cowbell-taped head and a bionic elbow. It Gets a star from me. 1

The New Dangerous Alliance (CW Anderson & Beautiful Billy Wiles, with Lou E. Dangerously as manager) takes on Danny Doring & Roadkill. Doring & Roadkill were brought up through ECW's House of Hardcore school and formed quite the unlikely pairing. How the fuck did an Amish character get over? Well Roadkill had an entertaining moveset. The match was fine, pretty paint by numbers ending with D&R's manager Elektra turning on them to join the NDA, helping CW Anderson get the win. Both teams would have better matches this year. 1.5

Kid Kash against Simon Diamond next, except it's not. Mike Awesome wants a fight and gives everyone the opportunity to run away or stay and die. Everyone leaves except Kash. Bad idea mate. Awesome destroys him. This doesn't go very long but this was a very fun match. It's a squash but a squash done well that excites the audience, gets Awesome even more over and Kid Kash didn't look like a total jobber either hitting a big high risk dive. Am I overating this? Probably but it's my blog sooo.... 2.5

From excitement to boredom now, the team of Nova & Chris Chetti defeating Jado & Gedo. Yes, one of the most successful puroresu tag teams and current bookers in NJPW appeared on an ECW show. This was before they even landed I New Japan as they were a part of FMW at this time, who ECW had a working relationship with. Nova had improved a lot as a performer by this point but Chetti never really made significant improvements in his time in ECW. This wasn't a good match. Sloppy and rushed, which I think is down to its time. I think it could have been a much more enjoyable watch with 5 or 10 minutes extra to work with. But yeah, the lads tried but it didn't go very well. Nova & Chetti use their tidal wave finisher to end things. 0.75

I must mention, Elektra cuts a promo here that is possibly the worst promo in this entire promotion's history, maybe in wrestling history. Its bad. We're also supposed to have Rhino against Sandman but Sandman forfeited due to injury.

Little Guido against Super Crazy next in a TV Championship Tournament semi final. These two have had good matches together, this might be their weakest encounter. Again, I put this down to match time affecting the match quality. Give these guys 15 minutes and we would get a 3+ star match for sure, but less than 10 minutes is hard to structure a good, competitive story. The action was good but they were rushing all of their offence to get as much in as they could. Super Crazy would win with a brainbuster and progress to the finals. 2.75

Now we get into the really bad stuff on this card. Firstly, Kintaro Kanemura against Balls Mahoney. Nothing really bad by those involved, but this was a pointless 2 minute section where Balls squashes Kanemura which feels like a real waste. Kanemura made a name for himself in Japan for his hardcore matches, a perfect fit to have a chaotic Brawl here in ECW. But, he's jobbed out to Balls who didn't really need or deserve it. This was a set up for the next match, Da Baldies (Angel, Tony DeVito & Vic Grimes) came out and attack Balls which draws out their opponent New Jack. We will get to that shit show in a second, but first, here's a zero rating for wasting mine and Kanemura's time. 0

So I'm unsure if this is New Jack against Vic Grimes or if its a Handicap match but it really doesn't matter. Jack & Grimes brawl towards a scaffold. Uh oh. They set up two tables and climb up the scaffold. UH OH. It's not a very good platform to do anything, so New Jack improvised and throws himself down, dragging Grimes with him. FUCK NO. They miss the tables, Grimes lands ontop of Jack and the match is called off as Paramedics enter the scene. Awful, terrible, fucking stupid match. Jack shouldn't have improvised, they shouldn't have even attempted this without knowing it was feasible, but that wasn't New Jack's style. Lucky this didn't kill either of them. This could have ended so much worse. Heyman & ECW are lucky this is how it ended, because if they green lit the match, the spot reflects really poorly on them. Fuck the fans for cheering a blatantly botched accident. Joey Styles comparing the kayfabe hospitalisation story to this very real near-death experience was bad taste but I imagine he was just trying to say something at least. These two would go on to have another ridiculously life threatening match in future in XPW. I won't be reviewing that anytime soon. 0

Let's get back to some wrestling shall we? ECW Tag Team Champions Raven & Mike Awesome defend against the Impact Players (Lance Storm & Justin Credible) & the team of Tommy Dreamer & Masato Tanaka. Wild chaos to begin with which is fun but rushed, leading to Tanaka putting Awesome through tables and hitting a roaring elbow to eliminate him! To set up another match between the two I assume but Raven could have easily eaten a pin here and not be damaged by it. We get a more standard tag affair now, leading to the Impact Players defeating the good guys thanks to Lance Storm and his Spike piledriver. Some good action here but why is everything in this show so RUSHED?! Give most of the card some time to breathe, and this could have been a fantastic show, mostly. 2.25

Time to crown a new TV champion, Rhino faces Super Crazy. The match isn't getting much crowd reaction. They want Sandman but we ain't seeing him. After some solid work Tajiri makes a run in, then an injured RVD runs in which finally draws some enthusiasm from the crowd. Scotty Anton & Bill Alfonso are there too. RVD, on one leg, flapjacks Rhino through a table which is impressive. Crazy follows up with a moonsault to earn the victory. Nice moment for Super Crazy but he doesn't look strong when it took a one-legged RVD to get the win. Heel beatdown occurs which draws out Sandman clears House and drinks beer to close the show. The action was fine but there was little to no interest until RVD appeared. 2

Overall, this show was heading towards failure due to a lot of the main talent either being out injured or on their way out of the company. However, Heyman's booking made this significantly worse than it should have been. Cut out the segments and bad promos, cut out a couple of the matches and give the other matches extra time to breath and have some flow to it. Too much rushed action and it hurt every match. Also, STOP LETTING NEW JACK DO STUPID SHIT.

MOTN: Guido v Crazy

#51: Cyberslam, February 16th 1996. 27.8%

This PPV was well received by critics, but I think they're being generous. This is the first Cyberslam show that ECW produced, and I believe it is their worst big show (that I have watched) in 1996. The show is saved by a big return and 1 amazing match. Let's get stuck in.

Pointless 6-man tag action first as the Bad Crew (Dog & Rose) team with Judge Dredd to defeat Dino Sendoff, Don E. Allen & Dirt Bike Kid. It certainly heated up the crowd, but for the wrong reasons. The fans shit all over the match and were happy to see it finish so that Sandman could come down and cane everyone. ECW did this a few times. Have a shit opening match to anger the crowd to draw out a crowd favourite (usually Sandman or 911) to crush them all. I get it. But why not just have a good, hot opening contest instead of buying 6 jobbers? 0.25

They followed that up with, oh look, another jobber match. Spiros Greco defeats El Puerto Riqueño in a couple minutes. Bad and boring. This didn't even have someone to come clear house when it finished. The fans were again brutal on the Wrestlers, and I don't blame them. Fun fact, EPR is Pablo Márquez who refereed the Ultimate Warriors last ever wrestling match against Orlando Jordan (remember him?) in Spain. That is a real, factual sentence I just typed. 0.25

Taz squashes Joel Hartgood in 2 minutes. Nothing much to say here. Afterwards people come to try help Joel but Taz just suplexes them all. At least this had a reason for it, to get Taz over. They did way too many Taz squash matches though. 1

Before the next match, we had the return of Brian Pillman! He cut one hell of a shoot promo chastising Bischoff, WCW, ECW, the fans, then threatens to take a piss in the ring. Heyman & Gordon get security to take him away. A fan swings at Brian (a plant I assume) and Brian drags over the barrier and attacks him with a fork! He's dragged away while Shane Douglas refuses to leave the ring until Pillman's gone, shouting threats at him. This was a brilliant promo, really blurred the lines of reality and kayfabe. This was building to a Douglas/Pillman programme, a shame nothing ever really came of it. Unfortunately a month after this Pillman would get into a car accident, suffering injuries that would severely impact his future wrestling ability.

Buh-Buh Ray Dudley defeats Mr Hughes in a short match. I didn't rate this because it was more of a segment. Mr Hughes doesn't like the Dudleys, the Dudleys come out and have fun at his expense and Buh-Buh gets an easy win after a splash. Gets over Buh-Buh as a lovable character with the fans. NR

Next is supposed to be the Gangstas against the Headhunters but New Jack is in jail. Mustafa says he'll fight on his own but he gets his ass handed to him. The Headhunters say no team in ECW can face them. Out comes the Bruise Brothers for an impromptu match. Brawling ensues which ends when a headhunter pins a Bruise Brother, and a Bruiser brother pins a headhunter. Referee only counts the Bruise Bros pin and they win. Whatever. 0

Next up, JT Smith takes on Axl Rotten. These two teamed up until Smith turned on him in his quest to discover his Italian heritage. This was a decent little brawl, I enjoyed the finish with Smith's usual clumsiness being a trick for him to win. An inoffensive part of the show. 1

The Eliminators (John Kronus & Perry Saturn) team with Stevie Richards to take on The Pitbulls & Francine in a tag dog collar match. They gave these guys ample time but it wasn't great. Stevie knocks out Francine with a superkick before he gets a collar on. Some good stuff here but mainly just a dragging brawl. I liked Francine getting the pin over Richards. Not great overall though, Saturn did some good work in ECW but Kronus was really holding him back. 1

About fucking time. Finally, a match on this show I'm happy to review. 2 Cold Scorpio vs Sabu. They had a match I previously reviewed at Hardcore Heaven '94, it was the best thing on the show. This match was even better. Scorpio is the defending TV Championship in this contest. It goes to a 30 minute time limit draw, which I didn't mind at all. Both guys looked resilient, both guys told a good story and ultimately produced a great match. 4

Cactus Jack faces Shane Douglas next. Jack was on his way to Vince's land of big boys soon which played into the story of his last few ECW matches. These two have a good match together, Douglas trying to beat the hardcore back into Cactus. We even see that Infamous spot made famous at Royal Rumble '99 with a handcuffed Cactus Jack eating chair shots to the skull. That's not even the worst part. The finish comes when Whipwreck comes in, former partner of Jack looking for revenge, who clocks Cactus with a MEATY chair shot to his fucking face! It looked nasty. Douglas got a pin straight afterwards. 3

World Championship main event as Raven defends against The Sandman. This was fun, overbooked brawling nonsense. A usual Sandman match then. They keep Sandman looking string as Raven gets a cheap win. They played to their strengths and it helped. Raven retains. 2

Overall, we're still far away from any show recommendations, however I do recommend seeking out that Sabu/Scorpio encounter and at least the ending to Cactus Jack & Shane Douglas.

MOTN: Sabu v Scorpio

#50: Hostile City Showdown, June 24th 1994. 31.4%

ECW's first ever Hostile Showdown was centred around a "dream match" between hardcore icons Sabu and then WCW-employed Cactus Jack. Cactus was part of a talent exchange made between WCW & ECW following the legal issues of Worlds Collide. This was Cactus' first ECW appearance, he proved in short time to be a perfect member of their roster and would be a regular feature into early 1996. There's other stuff on this show too, which I'm obligated to talk about. Yippee.

Hack Meyers and Tommy Dreamer open the show. A slow and dull affair in an attempt to get Dreamer over with the crowd. They really hated Dreamer here, card more about the SHAH. Dreamer wins with a superfly splash to a chorus of boos. 1

Chad Austin vs Don E. Allen next, hooray, but wait! 911 is here, hooray! He chokeslams the wrestlers, the referee, the owner Tod Gordon, Dreamer comes out and he gets chokeslammed. This was fun and the crowd ate it up. I'm happier with this than the proposed jobber match. NR

Dog collar match now, The Tazmaniac facing current rival The Pitbull. They turned it into more of a strap match, which I didn't like, but still better than I expected. It was disjointed, confusing and slow at times but it's far from the worst thing on the show. Tax wins with a half-nelson suplex. After the match we would see Pitbull #2 return, appearing for the first time since 1992 to reform their Tag team. 2

Next on the agenda, Bruise Brothers defeat Shane Douglas & Mr Hughes. Yikes, this ain't good. Douglas is the only decent worker and even he looks demotivated here. A crappy match that went 18 BLOODY MINUTES. Jesus. Dull and heatless. 0.5

Another match type I dislike are those "*insert item here* on a pole" matches. They're very difficult to pull off without someone looking ridiculous. This Singapore Cane on a pole match did that to Sandman & Tommy Cairo. The only way to win is to retrieve the cane and then you can beat your opponent with it. They brawl around which incidently knocks the cane off the pole which poetically sums up the match. The referee balances the cane in the corner. Brilliant. Neither of them rush to the cane, they hit a couple of moves on each other and then woman hands Sandman a completely different cane from under the ring for him to beat Cairo up with. Referee calls the match a no contest. Not really anyone's fault for it going to shit, but it highlights the glaring issues in ECW'S production quality at this time. Everyone involved look silly being a part of this. 0.5

Tag action now pitting the Public Enemy against the Funk brothers, Terry & Dory Jr. This was Dory's first ECW appearance with semi-retirement only a couple of years away. We see some good wrestling which spills in brawling and then a no contest finish, which is frustrating when we saw one in the last match. 911 makes another appearance and Paul E. counts a pinfall for the Enemy, then Terry counts a pinfall for Dory but neither count. The match is thrown out as the two teams continue to fight, leading to a crazy finish as Terry Funk hangs Rocco by his ankles with a rope over the balcony. That looked awesome. I enjoyed this match but it's lack of a finish and being slightly too overbooked lowers it's rating a tad. 2.75

Another Mikey Whipwreck TV Title match next, defending against Rockin' Rebel. Short but more of the same. Whipwreck made Rebel look good, he hit no offensive moves on Rebel. Referee disqualifies Rockin' Rebel for continuous use of a chair, because ECW have consistent rules shut up. Inoffensive segment. 1

The anticipated finale of the show, Cactus Jack vs Sabu. A good, fun Brawl. Sabu was in fine form in this match, everything was flowing well. Major props to Cactus for his work considering he injuries himself in this match. He suffered herniated discs which caused him to have hives covering over half of his body, eventually hospitalising him. Foley is just built different. Sabu gets the cheap win after Paul E. hits Jack with the phone. With that injury in mind, Jack persevered through a post-match brawl segment, including being put through a table. The show ends with a very good promo by Jack talking about his loss and the WCW Tag Championships. 3.25

Overall, I wonder how good the main event could have been if Foley didn't get injured. I'm not sure when it happened but you can see in moments towards the end he was in pain. Outside of 2 matches, this show is pretty darn poor. The poor production quality was on full display here in the cane match. Booking was alright if not mildly questionable, but in-ring work was miserable at best.

MOTN: Cactus Jack vs Sabu

Come back soon for Part 2 where we will still have to review some crap wrestling, but stumble over some hidden gems that are worth seeking out. See ya!


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