THE TWO SHEDS REVIEW by Julian Radbourne
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It’s time for one of those strange occurrences again, a DVD review of a pay-per-view I’ve already reviewed, and this time we’re taking a look back at one of TNA’s recent releases, the two-disc Hardcore Justice.
Beginning with Disc One, and after Taz’s opening statement it was on to the first match of the show, six-man action as the FBI, Little Guido, Tony Luke and Tracy Smothers, accompanied by Big Sal Graziano, faced Kid Kash, Simon Diamond and Johnny Swinger.
I really enjoyed this one. Some nice back and forth action, a funny as hell dancing contest, and more back and forth action made this a great spectacle, with Guido taking home the win for his team, taking Diamond down with his version of the unfretted/killswitch, or whatever it’s called in Italy.
Then it was on to singles action as C.W. Anderson took on Too Cold Scorpio.
I said in my original review that Scorpio wouldn’t be amiss in today’s X Division, and I stand by that after seeing this match again.
Both guys put in strong performances here. Anderson’s no nonsense style blended perfectly with Scorpio’s high flying tactics, with Too Cold getting the pin after a top rope somersault leg drop. These two would certainly fit in well with the current TNA roster.
The singles action continued as Stevie Richards, accompanied by Nova and the Blue Tilley, took on P.J. Polaco.
Free from the awful evil shrink gimmick, Richards got to show exactly what he could do in a nice even back and forth encounter. It was also great to see Polaco back to his ECW best.
Richards came out on top, taking the former Justin Credible down with a super kick as the cocky one posed.
The action continued after the bell when Polaco attacked Richards with his kendo stick. The lights then dimmed, and none other than the Sandman appeared to meter out his own brand of kendo stick justice. Sadly we didn’t get the ten minute beer swilling walk through the crowd. And I thought it was WWE that was PG!
The three-way dance, involving Rhino, Al Snow, accompanied by Head, and Brother Runt followed.
Like the opener this featured some solid action mixed in with some nice comedy moments involving Head and a steel chair.
Runt was the proverbial punching bag, but he ended up getting the first pin, taking Snow out with the acid drop. Runt fell seconds later though, Rhino quickly taking him out with the gore for the pin.
Then it was back to tag team action as Axl Rotten and Kahoneys went up against Team 3D, accompanied by Joel Gertner.
This match originally came about when Rotten and Kahoneys issued an open challenge, only to be greeted by the old school version of the Dudleys and the quintessential stud muffin. Trust me on this, Gertner’s line about Lady Ga Ga will become the stuff of legend in years to come.
With the stipulations set, these two teams proceeded to beat the hell out of each other, first through the Impact Zone and then in the ring with a variety of weapons, including light sabres. Yes, I used the words light sabres in a wrestling review, for the second time!
Eventually the flaming table came into play, with Kahoneys meeting a fiery end after a Team 3D power bomb. A three count later and the win was theirs.
But as Brother Ray proclaimed Team 3D as the best team in the world none other than Mustafa Saeed and New Jack, the Gangstas, came down to the ring. They proceeded to take Ray and Devon apart with everything, including a kitchen sink.
The carnage came to an end after Gertner was clobbered with a guitar, before all six men embraced and paid respect to each other. A great mixture of so many great elements here.
The penultimate match, billed as the final showdown, saw Tommy Dreamer taking on Raven, with Mick Foley as special referee.
I have to admit to feeling mildly disappointed about this one. The action between Raven and Dreamer was good, but things just seemed to get messy when other forces came into play. The appearances of Nova, the Blue Tilley, Lupus and Dreamer’s wife Theresa just seemed to drag it down.
Although it did pick up a little when Raven handcuffed Dreamer. The Innovator of Violence tried his best but eventually fell to Raven’s DDT. Not bad, but it was woefully overbooked.
The main event saw then-TNA World Champion Rob Van Dam, accompanied by Bill Alfonso, taking on Sabu, also accompanied by Bill Alfonso, in a non-title match. Sabu came in as a late replacement for the injured Jerry Lynn.
At the time I said that this was RVD’s best match during his TNA tenure, and I still feel the same way. These two easily picked up where they’d left off a few years before, and for once Sabu was able to paint the entire fence without any problems.
It was just like old times, with numerous chair shots. And it was a joy to watch, with RVD getting the win with the five star frog splash.
Disc two is where you’ll find the bonus features, which include a documentary, various pre and post-match interviews, a Q&A session with Mick Foley and Tommy Dreamer, and the usual photo galleries and music videos.
In conclusion – when Hardcore Justice was originally shown a few months ago it received a ton of negative reviews, while I gave it a very favourable review.
My opinion of this show hasn’t changed one bit. It still is the best show TNA have put on this year, and like the original One Night Stand and Hardcore Homecoming it gives you that warm, fuzzy, nostalgia feeling.
Which is why this DVD release gets the big thumbs up from me. If you’re a die hard ECW follower then you’ll love this show.
With thanks to the TNA powers that be for supplying a copy of this release. TNA Hardcore Justice is available to buy at all the usual places.