WWE – Hell In A Cell 2015 (Cert 15)
1 Disc Blu-ray / DVD (Distributor: Fremantle Media) Running Time: 166 minutes approx.
The old metal construction was wheeled out once again for this annual event, this time with the express purpose of settling two of the bigger feuds in the WWE, rather than just serving as a gimmick match to keep things going in the meantime.
And to further illustrate that 2015 is the year of the youth movement in WWE, the main event was contested by a broken down veteran pushing fifty and a near forty year-old who only shows up when he feels like it; the WWE title was defended against another twenty year veteran who has seen better days; the tag title challengers are also ex-Attitude era alumni with a twenty plus year career to their names; and of course John Cena is STILL defending championships because god know he needs the push.
Unfortunately Vince McSenile only knows how to book his beloved veterans or his anointed few, so until he gets a clue, we’re stuck with it I’m afraid.
The show took place on October 25th at the Staples Centre in Los Angeles, California before 14,184 fans and our commentators as always are Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler and JBL. As ever, while my match review won’t contain any results, expect plenty of opinion.
WWE US Title Open Challenge Match – John Cena vs. ???
Well, you probably already know by now and while for some it was a letdown for others, like myself, it was a legit jaw dropping moment, when you consider the recent history between this chap and the WWE. Many fans had speculated whether we would see someone from NXT get the call up, like Samoa Joe, Baron Corbin, Tyler Breeze, James Storm or maybe even Hideo Itami (still injured) but that was never on the cards. Match was short and won with a transitional move to heighten the sense of anti-climax but since it was common knowledge that Cena was leaving for Personal reason” (to film a reality boot camp type show) the result was never in doubt anyway.
Hell In A Cell Match – Roman Reigns vs. Bray Wyatt
One of the more dull and interminable feuds in WWE designed to get Reigns over enough to be accepted as a future WWE champion despite still receiving the Cena treatment finally comes to an end in a dull and interminable HIAC match. It felt much longer than its 23 minutes and was basically big spots followed by a lot lying about, either selling or just sleeping. The match was plodding but hard hitting although the psychology was askew – they would hit insane moves with tables, chairs and kendo sticks but the victory came after a simple finisher? I’m all for finishing moves being just that in this instance it has less impact than the brutality which preceded it. Oh well…
WWE Tag Title Match –The New Day (c) vs. Dudley Boyz
The New Day is just Kofi and Big E as Xavier is out of action after having his trombone stuck up his jacksey by the Dudleys (reality – he was getting married), although said piece of brass was there in his place and would become – ahem – instrumental in the finish of the match. The infamous Dudleys’ botch has not been edited out surprisingly, arguably being a highlight of this pedestrian match. As a nostalgia act, the Duds have run their course already but the tag division is a little low on new challengers for the New Day, so this is another feud we are stuck with.
WWE Divas Title Match – Charlotte (c) vs. Nikki Bella
Nikki gets her rematch after losing the title to Charlotte at Night Of Champions and this would be her last match before rehabbing a back injury which she has been working through. Maybe if Cena packed his bags a bit lighter Nikki’s back would be fine! Match was solid but oddly paced, and unlike NXT women’s matches doesn’t build to a stirring climax, instead skipping the drama and going straight for the finish. Charlotte suffered a bloody nose early on but it is not like Flair blood hasn’t been spilled in the ring before, is it?
WWE Title Match – Seth Rollins (c) vs. Kane
Rollins is a hell of a worker but his main event feuds have been complete jokes, along with the way he has been portrayed as simpering, whiney puppet to the Authority. This particular story is among the dumbest. Corporate Kane was injured by Brock Lesnar but returned as Demon Kane to attack Rollins, only to revert back to Corporate Kane and be a nice smiley guy with no apparent knowledge of the Demon being back. Rollins would set Corporate Kane up only for Demon Kane to seek retribution which somehow led to this match with the added stipulate that if Demon Kane lost, Corporate Kane was fired!
My head hurt just typing that. Of course this wasn’t a rip off of the Abyss/Joseph Park angle in TNA because Vince doesn’t acknowledge TNA’s existence let along copy their storylines (*cough* Claire Lynch *cough*). Match was better than it should have been thanks to Rollins flying and bumping about but hardly World Title calibre and especially not in 2015!
WWE IC Title Match – Kevin Owens (c) vs. Ryback
Ryback gets his rematch against Owens from Night At Champions but they only have five minutes to contest what was once an important title. A rushed RAW match at best that did neither men any favours.
Hell In A Cell Match – Undertaker vs. Brock Lesnar
You may recall that in fact these two faced off inside the cell back in 2002 so not only is this a 2015 main event match between two part timers but in fact a rematch of a feud ending match from thirteen year earlier! I can’t wait for the day someone shows Vince that the real definition of the word “progress” is not “rehash the same old stuff and hope nobody notices”.
Match was surprisingly brutal given Taker’s current state and almost caused ructions when both men bled, something we’ve not seen much during the PG era. The jury is out as to whether it was intentional but there was no evidence of blading so they must have used old hardway tricks instead. Apparently Vince was fuming backstage but more so for Lesnar throwing a doctor out of the ring but both the and Taker escaped censure because even Vince isn’t that stupid. End result though, was that this match did what it was supposed to do and put a close to this heated feud.
This show like many others this year exemplifies everything that is wrong with the stale creative of the WWE and how the quick fix solution of bringing back old faces is a flimsy plaster over a gaping wound which is losing its stickiness fast. The cell is meant to be a draw but when the feuds are so difficult to invest in or the participants are so poorly booked, it all amounts to nothing.
For whatever reason even the talent seemed to have an off night – which may have been an edict implemented to ensure the two cell matches were the lone highlights – with a series of undercard bouts which were either rematches of rematches or the same old faces treading water. Aside from the surprise in the opener and the brutality of the main event, there is little to see here and with the inevitable Roman Reigns era soon to be upon us let’s hope this misfire was just the calm before the storm.
Best Match – Undertaker vs. Brock Lesnar
Hell In A Cell Kickoff Match– Neville, Dolph Ziggler & Cesaro vs. Sheamus, King Barrett & Rusev
Blu Ray Only:
Monday Night RAW 28th September 2015 – Corporate Kane’s HR Evaluation
Smackdown 1st October 2015 – Roman Reigns Want To Go To Hell With Bray Wyatt
Monday Night RAW 12th October 2015 – Lumberjack Match – Seth Rollins vs. Demon Kane
Monday Night RAW 19th October 2015 – Undertaker and Brock Lesnar Have A Stone Cold Exchange
Rating – **
Man In Black