HomeWrestlingWWE: SmackDown Retro Review | November 8th 2001 - Who'll Defect?

WWE: SmackDown Retro Review | November 8th 2001 – Who’ll Defect?

WWE SmackDown | Continental Airlines Arena – East Rutherford, New Jersey | TV Rating: 4.1

The Good: I’m really struggling.  So as illogical as it is, Tazz actually standing up to Steve Austin again (and getting the crowd behind him as a result) will have to do.  I mean ten seconds later he’s tasted the Stunner and that’s that.  But I’m really struggling… it’s all about who’s going to “defect”~

The Bad: Not only does William Regal against The Big Show (no-one’s idea of a technical classic, admittedly) go to a 30 second DQ when “The Alliance” interferes, Show beats up about a dozen Alliance guys just because he can.  They aren’t even trying any more.  Vince is so impressed he hands Show a spot at Survivor Series. 

The Indifferent: The novelty of starting with a match soon wears off when it’s the APA against The Dudley’s with the WCW Titles on the line.  It’s the usual stuff which is over in less than five minutes with the only addition to the formula being a “brawl” between Jackie and Stacy. 

The show long continuation of the storyline that one of the Alliance is going to defect to the WWE at Survivor Series is at least an attempt to do something given that no-one has believed in the Alliance since, oh, about a day or two after they brought together WCW and ECW.  But Steve Austin “interrogating” everyone in turn just seems like a way to fill out a TV show than offering us any real entertainment beyond that. 

The Intercontinental Title match pitting Test against Matt Hardy goes less than three minutes and the only real “drama” is that Matt passed up the opportunity to team with Lita later on to take on Ivory & Lance Storm.  Jeff takes up the spot in that match and that’s a whole bunch of nothing either.  Still, at least it’s a relatively interesting way to tease dissension between The Hardy’s (and Lita). 

The Rock and Booker T’s WCW World Title Match goes less than five minutes and ends up with a DQ.  Why do they even bother? Christian and Tajiri go even less. 

The main event pitting The Undertaker against Steve Austin and Kurt Angle goes seven minutes but isn’t exactly great.  They are pushing the whole “who will defect” storyline but quite why Vince doesn’t allow Taker to have a partner when we hear that Kane isn’t here just doesn’t make any sense at all.  Or maybe that match was booked by WCW?


Overall: Just weeks away from the climactic winner takes all Survivor Series things should be ramping up.  No matter how badly the Invasion angle has been.  But instead the only real storyline going into it revolves around which member of the Alliance will defect to the WWE.  And that is being dragged out to fill more segments than it perhaps needs to do.  The real big problem is that whilst the mercy killing of the Alliance is coming, everyone knows it is coming.  So there is no jeopardy and precious little at stake. 

Matthew Roberts
Matthew Roberts
"Who's your daddy, Montreal?" - Shawn Michaels
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