ECW November to Remember 1997 (11/30/1997)- Monaca, PA
We open up with Joey Styles telling us that they have set the ECW all-time attendance record here tonight and vowing to give everyone a November to Remember.
JERRY LYNN & TOMMY ROGERS vs. LANCE STORM & CHRIS CANDIDO- 7.25/10
This actually started off as just a singles match between Candido and Storm, but the way the transition flowed so smoothly that it felt like one match, so I have rated it as such. They start off with a good display of technical wrestling but the corwd decides that armlocks are boring, so Rogers and Candido pick up the face. Rogers gave Candido a suplex out of the ring and onto the floor, which got a big pop. These two were having a pretty good match until Lance Storm came out and ruined it with his interference.
Storm and Candido double team Rogers until "Dynamic" Jerry Lynn comes out and makes the save. After some two-on-two brawling, the referee decides to officially turn this into a tag team match.
At one point Storm went for a missile dropkick, but Rogers moved out of the way and it hit Candido. Later Storm went for a move on Lynn, but Candido insisted that Storm let him hit Lynn with the Blonde Bombshell instead, which annoyed Storm. Storm and Candido still picked up the win, but this would be the start of their feud which would last for a large chunk of 1998. This was a very fun, past-paced match. Perfect for an opener.
I also have to give Lance some major props for his awesome selling of Rogers' finisher, the move which Christian would later make famous as the Unprettier.
MIKEY WHIPWRECK vs. JUSTIN CREDIBLE (w/Jason)- 6/10
We got a great little video package to introduce this match, but both men over as kings of the upset victory. For Justin they showed his victory over the Great Sasuke from last month's Beast of the Extreme, and for Mikey, of course, they showed him pinning Austin at November to Remember 1995
This match was very short and very fast-paced. Jason getting his comeuppance in the form of a kick to the balls was great, and they managed to make Mikey's win seem like an upset, which fit in with the theme of the match.
AL SNOW BACKSTAGE WITH THE HEAD- yeah... Al's totally insane.
SABU VS. SANDMAN VIDEO PACKAGE- great.
ECW TV TITLE MATCH: Taz(c) vs. Pitbull #2 (w/Pitbull #1, Brakkus, & Lance Wright)- no rating. Good segment.
Taz takes some offense, but then quickly makes the Pitbull tap. Then Pitbull #1 comes in and gets some, too. Taz is a beast. Taz then grabs a mic and implies that the yet-unnamed Brakkus is Lance Wright's lover and wanted to fight him. Brakkus also wants to fight but security won't let them, so Taz assaults a security guy while Pual E. frantically screams for the cameras to cut away and roll something else. We cut to clips of Bam Bam Bigelow tossing Spike around and Spike being body-surfed around the ECW Arena.
WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE MATCH VIDEO PACKAGE- good
FOUR WAY ELIMINATION MATCH FOR THE ECW WORLD TAG TEAM TITLES: The FBI(c) (w/"the Don" Tommy Rich) vs. Balls Mahoney & Axl Rotten vs. The Gangstanators vs. The Dudley Boys (w/Big Dick Dudley, Sign Guy Dudley, & Joel Gertner)- 2.5/10
Gertner was in top form here ("the Quintessential Muff-stuffer. Whoops. I mean Stud-Muffin"). Balls and Axl jump the heels from behind because they are terrible babyfaces. The Gangstanators wait until the match has already been going on for five minutes before coming out because they are lazy.
Standard dull garbage match with people hitting each other with weapons with no psychology to it at all. Nothing we haven't seen and not cared about a million times befor-
That was new.
BIG DICK DUDLEY just did a freakin' MOONSAULT!
Gangstanators are out first. HOORAY! Now I don't have to hear that annoying song anymore!
GREAT spot to eliminate the Dudleys. Very creative.
We get a f*ck finish involving Jeff Jones, who is the best heel referee ever.
TOMMY DREAMER PROMO- awesome. Good old "fighting for the pride of my promotion" babyface stuff.
FLAG MATCH: Rob Van Dam (w/Bill Alfonso) vs. Tommy Dreamer (w/Beulah McGillicutty)- 2/10
There were no actual special rules to this match. It was just that the winning wrestler would get his company's flag raised (remember that RVD was kayfabe working for the WWF at the time).
So they did this pointless sh*t with Jeff Jones attacking the other refs when they were counting pins for Tommy and the other refs get up and it looks like they are about to beat Jones up... when Beulah comes out hits Jones with a low blow from behind. He was about to get his ass kicked by TWO PEOPLE whom he had just wronged... and now I just don't give a sh*t because Beulah had to come in and give him a low blow from behind like a dastardly heel. If they wanted to get a Beulah spot in so badly so there were numerous spots where it would have been perfect for her to hit Fonzie (the crowd was even chanting for her to do so). Why screw up someone else's revenge... and from behind, no less?
Speaking of Fonzie, he then came up behind the two referees as they were posing triumphantly after giving Jones a double DDT... walking RIGHT PAST BEULAH and gives both ref's a low blow from behind (you know... like a heel should be doing)... and Beulah does NOTHING to stop him. What a b*tch!
Beulah, of course, then gives Fonzie a low blow. RVD then goes after Beulah so Tommy goes after Rob and rolls him up with a school boy... and f*cking Beulah starts counting the pin like she's a f*cking referee now or something.
Tommy gives Rob a Piledriver and Rob f*cking BOUNCES off of the canvass. Tommy goes to pin him and Rob kicks out at one. Joey Styles does not mention this at all. Tommy is about to win but Doug Furnas and Phil Lafon show up to distract him, allowing Stevie Richards to show up and give Tommy a Stevie Kick. The fans gave Stevie a nice, loud "Welcome back!" chant. Allow me to reiterate this: Tommy Dreamer is valiantly fighting with a broken foot to represent ECW in a match where company pride is on the line against the WWF. Stevie then attacks Tommy... and the fans CHEER FOR IT! At this point I just do not care about this match anymore. After all, if the die-hard ECW fans in the building don't care about their company's pride, why should I? I also can't help but notice that absolutely NO ONE from the ECW locker room came out to help Tommy, either.
RVD then hit a Frog Splash onto a trash can onto Tommy and Furnas, Lafon, and Stevie all counted the pin and Fonzie grabbed a mic and declared RVD the winner. Sabu then showed up and did a dive onto Beulah. Tommy tried to protect Beulah but the heels beat him up more... and that was it. The match ended without any sort of actual finish. WHAT THE F*CK?!
TABLES & LADDERS MATCH: The Sandman vs. Sabu (w/Bill Alfonso)- 8/10
While Sandman is taking his standard forever to do his entrance, RVD and Sabu appear to be having a strategy session in the ring which consists entirely of them communicating non-verbally via their signature poses. Fantastic! Something that is not fantastic is the Sandman's physical conditioning. He appears to be pregnant.
An awesome match, which is even more remarkable, considering the circumstances. Those circumstances (according to Sabu on Kayfabe Commentaries Timeline: History of ECW 1997) were that the Sandman was very, very, very high on hallucinogens. This definitely screwed up some of their spots, but most of the time his drug-induced stumbling around just seemed like selling. Even with that, they managed to put on an amazingly violent match, where it really looked like the only way to put one of them down would be to knock him out... and it seemed like they both did get knocked out at several points.
TAZ PROMO- he challenges Bam Bam Bigelow to a match at ECW's next PPV, Living Dangerously.
ECW WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE MATCH: Bam Bam Bigelow(c) vs. Shane Douglas (w/Francine)- 8.5/10
Shane was an awesome babyface here (well... aside from the low blow, but as Joey reminded us, he is actually still a heel), and, surprisingly, so was Francine. Even when she interfered in the match and hit Bam Bam with her crutch, she came across as being brave instead of a dastardly heel. Shane sold his ass off, Bam Bam was a monster, and the crowd was hot for everything, including an awesome finish.
Anyway, this was a great show from ECW if you fast-forward through the dreck in the middle.
STUPID ANNOUNCER QUOTES:
1. Joey Styles "We do not want a world title match-up ending in a disqualification."
Disqualifications? In ECW? We've already had a low blow and two tables bumps in this match Joey!