Cewsh: This entire review was written on my honeymoon in Alaska where somehow ancient bacteria frozen beneath the Earth thawed and rose to the surface with the sole intention of making me so ill that my eyelids hurt. Trying to watch Dennis Rodman wrestle during that isn't what you would call appropriate physical therapy, but I muscled through because I'm a goddamn journalist.
I Generation Wrestling Proudly Presents...
Welcome, cats and kittens, to yet another installment of the defective directive detectives, Cewsh Reviews! We have a special treat for you tonight, as thanks to our very own Cewsh Reviews superfan takerson, we have laid our hands on a piece of wrestling history so buried in the sands of time that few may even be aware of its existence. This sacred tomb, which happens to sound like porn, is IGW Rodman Down Under, as this titular promotion runs a show with Dennis Rodman in the main event up against the legendary Curt Hennig, with a ton of other recognizable faces doing their best to not be recognized along the way as they take over Australia for one night of debaucherous wrestling like only the Worm can do it. Will this show be every bit as terrible as it seems based on the cover? Will Dennis Rodman put on a Platinum Seal match? Will it be horribly depressing to see many of these guys just before their deaths? Only one way to find out.
So without any further ado, let's do a motherfucking review!
Segment 1 – OPENING VIDEO FEVER!
Cewsh: The opening video for this very special program documents the build thus far between Hennig and Rodman. See, Hennig was the champion of this burgeoning promotion and Rodman had been shooting his mouth off about how he could beat anyone anywhere at anytime, and about how Hennig was a total nobody who had never been half the star in WCW that he (Rodman) had been. Which is both dickish and, technically, true on that last count. Then, at the event before this one, Rodman ran in at the end and jumped Hennig with uncharacteristic viciousness, quickly beating him down before strutting away, his message given. Then Hennig gave an interview talking about how Rodman can't just do whatever he wants, which of course prompted Rodman to dash in from behind and deliver a forearm shot to the back of Hennig's head that would have made Stan Hansen give a round of applause. Then the announcers (who happen to be some dude named Vince Mancini and Ted Dibiase) bill this as the ultimate matchup of wrestling verses basketball (which people have been clamoring for, I guess).
I'm not going to lie, this was really surprisingly good. Rodman brought real aggression here in addition to his natural ability to be a cocky little shit, and Hennig was every inch the heroic babyface that was standing his ground the best that he could, and was great at being OUTRAGED at Rodman having the gall to be such a dick.
This video didn't mention anything else on this show at all, but at the very least, i'm interested in the main event. That's a start.
Vice: I'm going to start this off by saying that I did not watch the same version of this as Cewsh. He had the actual version, full of what I assume was delightful Aussie commentary, full of sunshine and kangaroos, while mine was commented by Hitler and Himmler.
They're sort of like Batman and Robin, but less spandex. I know enough German that it wasn't a hassle to understand what was going on. Gotta say-- I love shows with foreign commentary. It makes everything seem that much more ridiculous and enjoyable. And boy was this a nutty show.
Segment 2 – Dennis *bleep* And *bleep* *bleep* Are *bleep* And *bleep* To *bleep*.
Cewsh: Curt Hennig comes out before we can get started and he calls out Rodman, telling him that when he enters Hennig's nightmare in the wrestling ring, he will be out of his depth. He then says “shit” which is bleeped, but which surprises me a little bit. But if that took me aback, then I must have been practically knocked off my feet by the profane salvo of Mr. Dennis Rodman as he comes out to tell Hennig that he's not scared of him or anybody. During this discussion, Rodman uses the word “fuck” once, the word “ass” 6 times (including twice in a row for some reason) the word “shit” once, and the word “titticaca” at least 12 times.
Such language, Mr. Rodman.
Segment 3 – I Generation Tag Team Championships – Tables Match - The Public Enemy © vs. The Road Warriors.
Cewsh: Alright, first of all, let's get this out of the way.
HOLY SHIT ITS THE ROAD WARRIORS AND PUBLIC ENEMEY THIS MATCH IS FUCKING ENORMOUS.
Ahem, alright, now let's dial it back, seeing as this is 2001 and not 1995, and 3 of these guys will be, unfortunately, leaving the mortal coil shortly after this event. Sad face. Anyway, we get another video where the Road Warriors conduct the single shortest press conference of all time followed by Public Enemy hitting them with metal things because RAWR YOU CANNOT HAVE OUR TITLES and all that.
Then we cut to the ring and it is ON.
The Public Enemy are out first, and the first thing to notice is that in this promotion the title belts are more boxing style, with the big wide belts with very little ornamentation. The second thing to notice is the surprisingly good production values and the genuinely enormous crowd here. And then there's the third thing to notice, which is the fact that the Public Enemy are some old fat bastards here.
Johnny Grunge in particular seems to have a great deal of trouble just getting into the ring, but luckily he makes up for it by cutting the single greatest promo in the history of professional wrestling. “First of all, I just wanted to say that you all suck! What you looking at here right now is the greatest tag team to set force in this ring ever! So what I want is each and every one of you *footage cuts past a portion of the promo noticeably* Oh yeah! As I was saying, all of you keep your damn mouth's shut of i'll beat all of your asses personally!”
So sayeth the master of the mic.
Then the Road Warriors come out with huge pyro and to quite a pop from the crowd. Dibiase spends their entire time walking down to the ring talking about what incredible shape these guys are in and how its remarkable that they've managed to remain in such peak physical condition after all these years. Then they take their shoulder pads off.
When they immediately cut to Johnny Grunge to cover for this, he is pantomiming giving a fan in the front row a blow job. I don't know about you, boys and girls, but i'm in love with this match already.
Unfortunately, when it comes to the match itself, things are...well...awful. First off, this match is a tables match where both members of a team must go through tables in order for them to lose, but when a guy goes through a table he is not eliminated. Its just a point against his team. Got it? Well nobody here did. First we have Ted Dibiase misunderstanding the rules so thoroughly and continuously that I could swear that he was just fucking with the other guy. Then, various people in this match take upon themselves to go for pins over and over and over and over and over and over again. At one point Animal goes for a sunset flip and Rocco Rock distracts the referee for some reason. Then the ref notices the pin and dramatically counts ONE...TWO...THuhhhh I mean, hey guys I don't think this is supposed to be happening this way. Dibiase tries to cover for this by saying its just instinct taking over, while his partner focuses more on finding new ways to call Johnny Grunge fat.
Then things are a mess for awhile, but some way or another Hawk ends up on a table and Rocco Rock flings himself gracefully over the top rope to the outside to eliminate him.
Road Warrior Hawk Has Been Eliminated Sort Of.
A few other things happen that I wont trouble you with and we get to the point where there is a table up in the corner. Rocococococo goes to Irish Whip Animal towards Grunge so he can put Animal through the table. Animal reverses it, and in one of the saddest finishes i've ever seen, is totally unable to lift Rocco up, so he just sort of slowly shuffles him towards the table. Grunge, who was supposed to be caught in between here, instead has to stand there looking confused for an agonizingly long period of time, as he debates whether or not to actually move out of the way, which would constitute exercise, or stand there and wait to be shoved onto a table.
Exercise never stood a chance.
Rocco Rock and Johnny Grunge Have Been Eliminated Sort Of.
Rocco takes it upon himself to back up into Grunge so fast that he actually leaves Animal's grasp before Animal adds any momentum. Theoretically that means that he put the two of them through the table, but shhhhhhhh. This match is over and we aren't going to complain about that.
It would be unfair of me to not mention that Rocco Rock was in good shape here and really busted his ass selling and flying about to make this watchable. It isn't his fault that his tag team partner was actually incapable of FALLING DOWN ON THE GROUND properly, much less wrestle.
Off to a good start boyos!
35 out of 100
Vice: The first thing I noticed about this match was that it involved four people, three of which are now deceased. It's a fucking shame, really, as this show isn't even THAT old. Also symbolic/creepy/coincidental is that Animal was the last man standing in this match, and he is the only one still alive today. RIP, guys.
Rocco Rock is the only one in here who appears to be in good shape and giving it 100%, as everyone else is just slow and, well, old. However, this match isn't a complete disaster. It's wrestled by two teams that spent years and years tagging together, so with this much experience, they know how to get the most out of what they have. Which isn't much, but it's enough that the match is moderately watchable. Nothing great, but I've seen a hell of a lot worse in my years.
Have these guys wrestled before?
The Road Warriors Over The Public Enemy Following The Casual Calamity.
Segment 4 – Some Chicks Come Out.
Cewsh: They dance.
Segment 5 – Hardcore Match – The Barbarian vs. Brute Force.
Cewsh: Brute Force is Brutus Beefcake.
18 out of 100
Vice: Barbarian and Brutus The Barber Beefcake. Oh dear. It's fun watching these old timers go at it in a sick sort of way, but this match was just dreadful. I haven't seen a ton of The Barbarian, but he looked extremely generic here. Like, if I didn't know it was The Barbarian, I'd have thought he was just some random fuck no one has ever heard of.
This match seemed to go on forever, and was just fucking lousy. With like 45 years experience between the two, hardcore rules to give them more crap to do, and seemingly as much time as they wanted to wrestle.. you'd have thought this could have been at least a quarter decent match. But it was shit.
Utter, utter shit.
I hope to never find myself having to watch it again.
Barbarian Over Brute Force Following A Kick.
Segment 6 – Some More Chicks Come Out.
Cewsh: They dance too.
Segment 7 – Brandi Wine w/ Sugar Daddy vs. Sweet Destiny w/ Aussie Joe.
Cewsh: Here we seemingly have our lone women’s wrestling match for the evening, and in fairness to this promotion, it was actually pretty progressive of them to even include women wrestling on such a big show a decade ago. It wasn’t exactly hugely common. Also uncommon are our two female athletes for this evening, neither of which have I ever heard of before viewing this.
Brandi Wine is obviously our heel for this evening, as she is platinum blonde, shows disdain for the crowd, and is accompanied to the ring by Fred Ottoman (better known as either Tugboat or the motherfucking SHOCKMASTER) who is refusing to be referred to as anything other than “Sugar Daddy”. Sweet Destiny on the other hand is an adorable young lady who seems to be all business about throwing down with Brandi, and in her corner is retired pro boxer, and the man who once called Russell Crowe a “gutless worm and a fucking girl”, Aussie Joe, who is probably the most over person on this show thus far.
These two get into it and, well, its not good. Its actually very not good. It is to good what dogs are to broadswords. Does not equal. Brandi Wine does her best and actually flashes some genuine skill here and there, but Sweet Destiny is so goddamn bad in this match that I thought that she was actually sabotaging it under the directions of Sugar Daddy. She blew every spot, she messed up every move, she missed every cue, and at one point, I think she actually botched standing up.
It was a mess, and did neither woman or this match any favors. At one point the crowd starts to come alive when Aussie Joe, who is wearing a referees' shirt for some reason and acting like a ref, decides to use his most powerful weapon against Sugar Daddy. Old man nudity.
It’s a sad, sad sight. But hey, at least it wasn’t Brute Force.
29 out of 100
Vice: This match was like watching a morbidly obese man running on a treadmill. You have to give kudos for the effort and determination, but goddamn is it cringe-worthy to watch. But you just can't take your eyes off it fully, either. Something about it sucks you in. You wonder if it can actually be pulled off in the end, or if it's going to end with a funeral.
Coincidentally, this match featured women.
Sweet Destiny Over Brandi Wine Following An Avalanche Brainbuster (by accident).
Segment 8 – Hey! Chicks!
Cewsh: Boooooooooo, bring out more sweaty dudes in spandex!
Segment 9 – IGW International Heavyweight - Tatanka vs. One Man Gang.
Cewsh: The following match will be reviewed by eight year old Cewsh.
Eight Year Old Cewsh: TATANKA! TATANKA TATANKA TATANKA!
Holy cow man, this was so totally radtaculous ! Tatanka was there, and he’s the biggest, strongest, face rulingest guy who ever was, and he’ll kick anybody’s ass no problem and then do his cool war dance like I used to in the living room with him until my mom complained about me being too loud. He’s fighting some big guy who stands no chance because he’s fat and dumb. He’s got a tattoo on his head which is wicked cool, but totally stupid because he’s a jerkface.
Anyway, Tatanka totally kicks this guy’s ass for like 3 hours but then the fat guy CHEATS TO BEAT TATANKA the fucking asshole! What a jerk! Nobody messes with Tatanka!
Tatanka will totally beat him up next time because that’s what he does but this was still stupid. Stupid and fun. Like my slap bracelet!
Cewsh: Holy shit, remember slap bracelets? Fucking awesome.
66 out of 100
This might scare a few people, but I do believe this is the first singles match I've ever seen One Man Gang wrestle. He seemed good enough for what was going on in the match, though obviously I can't judge anything off of this one match in Oz, since clearly he's far beyond his prime. I liked him well enough though, all things considered.
Tatanka is always a fun watch, despite his entrance music being some of the least fitting I've ever heard. He's still a good watch, and entertaining in the ring.
I feel like a dickhead for not having a lot to say about this match, or really any of the matches this far, but it's difficult because there isn't really a shit ton to talk about. Not a ton really stands out, whether it be good or bad. Just kind of.. there.
One Man Gang Over Tatanka Following A Brass Knuckle Shuffle.
Segment 10 – Chicks?
Cewsh: Yes, I suppose it IS time for chicks.
Segment 11 – IGW World Heavyweight Championship – Aussie Outback Match – Curt Hennig © vs. Dennis Rodman.
Cewsh: Oh baby, here we have it. The main event, the piece de resistance, the crème de la crème, the best of the best squaring off for the most prestigious championship in I Generation Wrestling to determine which man is truly the better. It is a special event, and truly once in a life time as one of the greatest professional wrestlers in the history of this glorious business goes toe to toe with one of the most controversial and talented athletes of the 20th century in Dennis Rodman. Will the Worm’s freakish athleticism and cocky demeanor reign supreme over the heart and technical skill of the man they once called Perfect? Oh ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, cats and dogs, pigeons and sparrows, there is only ONE way to find out.
See that? See how hyped up and interested you are right now after reading that? Well that’s how I felt when this match got started. See, they hyped this match very effectively all throughout the show, and I was genuinely interested to see what Rodman could do, not only in his first real singles match, but also in a match with, without a doubt, the highest quality technical wrestler he’s ever been in the ring with. Its an interesting dynamic, and the Aussie Outback rules (which basically made it a Falls Count Anywhere match) only serves to make it more exciting, because that kind of match would best help hide the flaws with Rodman. They had me locked, loaded and ready to go, and for the first few minutes of this match, man, I was in heaven. They brawled all over ringside, with Rodman bringing an unexpected amount of genuine aggression and style to the affair, while Hennig acts every inch the heroic babyface. I was eating it up with a spoon.
And then it ended.
For ten minutes, this match was better than it could ever have had any right to be. And then, around the 10 minute mark, Dennis Rodman grabs the ref, throws him violently out of the ring, and is promptly disqualified. It was abrupt and had no build up whatsoever, and frankly I didn’t even know that there COULD be a DQ in an Aussie Rules match. Neither did the fans, because they sat in absolute silence after the match, completely unsure of how to react to it, before Rodman wanders off and Hennig leaves too, leaving everyone in attendance in kind of a quiet murmur as they litter the ring with garbage.
I can’t relate the degree to which this was a devastating ending for this match and this show. A good main event match here is something that may well be talked about to this very day. Instead they took a truly bizarre way out, killed the ground and then promptly went on to never hold another show. I’m not saying that this finish was so bad it murdered the company or anything. But, well, yeah. It did.
60 out of 100
Vice: Aaaah rest in peace, Hennig. Up until he died, he was still a fantastic wrestler. This wasn't a fantastic match now, but considering he was wrestling Dennis Rodman of all people here. And it was probably the best match he's had. Though, that also requires me to go back and watch more Dennis Rodman in the ring. I remember my father and I ordering Bash at the Beach so we could see Rodman and Hogan take on DDP and MALONE. I remember it not being that great, but it was enjoyable and crazy enough that I was entertained by it as a lad. No idea what I'd think about it now, but I have a bit of a mission it seems.
This match ended in a pretty lame, anticlimactic way. Seriously, you shouldn't do this shit in the main events.
It just leaves everyone with a sour taste in their mouths, and you kind of forget about the rest of the show and just roll your eyes.
Nobody Wins Because The Ref Is A Dick.
Cewsh: What a wacky show.
We review a lot of varied stuff here at Cewsh Reviews, so we generally, going in, know basically what to expect (with the notable exception of the Bread Eating Deathmatch). I was sort of expecting this to be like a WCW PPV circa 2000, but that really wasn’t what this was at all. This was an indy promotion who were running a nostalgia show with a main event way out of their depth. The show wasn’t necessarily as bad as the scores will dictate, and may even be enjoyable to someone with a good dose of nostalgia behind them. But the fact that over 50% of this card passed away between then and now, the absolutely awful ending to the main event, and the fact that brute Force is not an esteemed member of the correct 50% just dragged this show down into the doldrums. Which was a shame, because FUCKING TATANKA WOOOO!
Cewsh’s Final Score: 41.6 out of 100
Vice: Overall, I really did want to have more to say about this show, but there's not much to say. Not much I can really crap on. Not much I can make fun of. Not much to do anything with. It was wacky seeing all these names in such a strange environment, but that's about it.
Vice’s Final Score: 42 out of 100
Now, i'll leave you with our top 3 Australian fans that we came to know and love.
This Man's Penis Is Actually Capable Of Killing Fictional Half Basketball Player/Half Lizard Hybrids.
Well that'll do it for us this wee...well, actually boys and girls that WON'T do it for us this week. Coming up at you at high speed is WWE Over the Limit 2011, which while it may be late to the point of irrelevance, will limp across the finish line with a spring in its step and a proud tear in its eye. Then, in rapid fire succession (meaning it may only take a month between them) will be coming TNA Sacrifice 2011, WWE Vengeance 2011, WWE Capitol Punishment 2011, and TNA Slammiversary 2011. Because, ladies and gentlemen, that's how we definitively roll. But that's then, and these are uncertain times. So for now, as always, just remember to keep reading and be good to one another.