Tuesday, January 5, 2021

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Armageddon 2002 Review - December 15th, 2002

WWE: Armageddon 2002 
December 15th, 2002
Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Awesome opening video package

1) Chris Jericho & Christian (c) vs. Booker T & Goldust vs. The Dudleys vs. William Regal & Lance Storm - World Tag Team Championship Match 
After the dissension Book & Goldy had on Raw, I’m sure a lot of people saw this big comeback coming for them and it rules. Dudleys and Regal & Storm go out first leaving the two teams that truly had been feuding to go at it. Book & Goldust overcome the odds and some cheap belt shots to get the win and become tag team champions for the first time!! Very fun way to open the show. 

Match rating - **3/4

Jonathan Coachman interviews Book & Goldust post match. Book says everyone believed in them and he tells Goldy he isn’t the weak link. 

Cole & Taz are at ringside and we get a backstage segment from Heat where Brock Lesnar is IN DA HOUSE since his suspension is lifted. Lesnar says he will make an impact tonight. 

2) Edge vs. A-Train

Albert took out Edge’s partner Rey Mysterio a few weeks back and Edge has been seeking out revenge ever since which leads us here. This ended up being a lot better than I expected. Albert dominates and Edge fights from underneath and the crowd is into it. A chair gets involved and A Train gets DQ'd for hitting Edge in the leg with it. Edge snaps post match and cracks A Train over the head with the chair. 

Match rating - **1/4

3) Eddie Guerrero vs. Chris Benoit 

Its these two so you know its good. They throw each other around with suplexes and work holds. Chavo gets involved down the stretch to try and screw Benoit. Chris overcomes and forces Eddie to tap to the cross face. Good intense match. 

Match rating - ***

Dawn Marie hits the ring with Al Wilson to reveal the footage of her & Torrie from the hotel a few weeks back, just like she promised. It shows her and Torrie undressing and making out before Al Wilson calls for it to stop. Dawn grants his wish and still plans to marry Torrie’s father. 

4) Kane vs. Batista (w/ Ric Flair) 

They go back and forth for a little while before Flair gets involved. Kane fights him off, but the distraction allows Batista the time to hit the Batista bomb and clench the victory. 

Match rating - *1/2

5) Victoria (c) vs. Trish Stratus vs. Jacqueline - Women’s Title Match 

Well.. this barely got any time and was just.. whatever. Victoria retains so I’m happy <3 

Match rating - *1/4

6) The Big Show (c) vs. Kurt Angle - WWE Championship Match 

This was a pretty overbooked mess, but a fun one. Heyman is interfering. A-Train runs down. There’s a chair involved. Before you know it, Brock runs down and chases Heyman out of the ringside area and next thing you know Angle has pinned The Big Show to become the new WWE Champion. 

Match rating - **1/2

7) Shawn Michaels (c) vs. Triple H - 2/3 Falls Match for the World Heavyweight Title 

So this is essentially a 3 stages of hell match as every fall has a different stipulation. The first is a street fight and it’s pretty wild. I popped insanely hard for H grabbing a barbed wire bat and setting it on damn fire and trying to hit HBK with it. The barbed wire bat alone is not like WWE or these guys, much less the fire spot also. So that was nutty to see. Everything else was good, fine enough street fight stuff. H wins the first fall and the Steel Cage lowers for the second. There are still weapons in the ring from the first match and H immediately keeps assaulting Michaels looking for a clean sweep to regain the World Title. HBK gets busted open and they end up on top of the cage. Some awesome teasing of an escape here but H also has Flair set up four tables so you thought a spot off the cage was coming, but it doesn’t.. yet. Flair ends up getting inside in the cage and gets busted open. Shawn fights him off and hits a dive onto H off the top of the cage through a table for the three count, winning fall two. Now it’s a ladder match. Shawn’s specialty! So he will sure retain right?! Shawn misses a huge dive off the top of the ladder that made me wince. He somehow recovers and looks like he has the title won, but H tips him and the ladder over and he crashes through the four tables on the floor that Flair set up during the cage match. This clip would be replayed for years to come on the “don’t try this at home” disclaimer. This leads H to victory and his second World Heavyweight Title reign. Sooo, I’ve seen a lot of mixed and mostly negative reviews on this match. Mine probably seems pretty positive and detailed, only because I was literally doing something else with it on in the background for most of it. Watching it that way, it was fine! Not great, but not the complete DUD some people saw. It was pretty long though and my interest in it wasn’t very strong. Some cool spots worth a look, but I definitely wouldn’t go out of my way to spend 40 minutes watching this. This story has been good and made sense but has been drawn out far too long and this match was the same way. 

Match rating - **3/4 

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