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WWE TLC 2009 - A look at the new December Classic

Tables, Ladders, and Chairs… Oh My! – Part 1

This weekly column is going to be a retrospective look at the December “classic” which began in 2009.  For each of the next 6 weeks, I will watch and review one TLC PPV chronologically and report on it with 2015 eyes, leading up to this year’s PPV / Special Event on December 13, 2015 at the TD Garden in Boston, MA.

 

TLC 1 – December 13, 2009 – San Antonio, Texas – AT&T Center

This was the first TLC PPV and it was in the three-brand era.  With seven matches on the card and plenty of them for titles, it had the potential to be a great show. 

 

Dark Match – R-Truth defeated CM Punk (with Luke Gallows)

  • This match was not on the network, but it’s fun to think that of these three talents, only R-Truth is still on the roster, I guess.

 

Christian (c) defeated Shelton Benjamin in a ladder match for the ECW Championship:

  • Styker, Cole, and Lawler on commentary.  Stryker was bad, but not as bad as he would get.
  • Christian came up bloody and they sent in a doctor, which is one of the first times I can recall this happening.  It did not look like a blade job.
  • Never catch Shelton’s kick; it always backfires.  Didn’t Christian learn anything from watching RVD?
  • Pretty tame ladder match, but solid nonetheless.
  • When making a title belt, don’t make it silver.  The ECW belt looked like a second place medal, which in this case is a step up, but still. 
  • If you’re in a ladder match, climb the ladder as fast as possible.  Anything else is agonizing for the viewer.
  • I’m not sure Christian’s status with the company, but he’s not on the active roster.  We’ll keep a running tally of those still on the active roster.  This match has zero, the previous had one, so we’re at 1 yes and 4 no.
  • This match used the WWE gimmicked “steel” (but actually wood) ladder that broke in half.  The first time I remember seeing a gimmicked ladder was a match between Jarrett and Benoit, and the rungs were supposed to break as Benoit stepped on them, but they didn’t so Benoit was stomping on them trying to break them and it looked ridiculous.

 

Drew McIntyre defeated John Morrison (c) for the WWE Intercontinental Championship:

  • Nobody on the current roster here, so we’re at 1-6.
  • Fun fact:  Morrison always went tanning with his pants on.  That’s true.
  • Decent match that absolutely no one cared about in the building, or in my living room.

 

Michelle McCool (with Layla) (c) defeated Mickie James

  • Zero current roster members here, for a total of 1-6, and that one was on the dark match and hasn’t been on WWE TV in forever.
  • Mickie James wrestling in bedazzled jeans and McCool in bedazzled everything.  When did we sign off on bedazzling being ok for anyone other than 4th grade girls?
  • The “Piggie James” shirt that was clearly made with iron on letters the night before was awesome.
  • Do you think Lou Thesz felt honored by Mickie James doing his move?
  • Red hat “Sign Guy” is in the crowd behind the announcers.
  • Stryker really sucks in this match.

 

Sheamus defeated John Cena (c) in a tables match for the WWE Championship

  • Two active guys here, but Cena is on a break and Sheamus was just paired up with Wade Barrett.  Still, we’re up to 3-6.
  • Mark Cuban was somehow involved with this angle.  What?  Here’s how you get into WWE:  Be 6’2 and 265, or be a whacky billionaire. 
  • In his promo, Sheamus kept saying that all he has to do is put him trough a table, not really beat him.  Awesome. 
  • “We Hate Cena” T-Shirt guy in the front row.  I love him.
  • This is the “Sheamus ended Jamie Noble’s career” push that went so well.
  • I wonder what types of tables would be accepted to be put through for the win?  What if Cena came to the ring with a poster rolled up and unfurled a periodic table and somehow made Sheamus rip through it?  I think that would count, right?  That would prove you’re a better wrestler just as well as breaking a piece of plywood with your opponent’s carcass. 
  • I miss Cena’s jorts.
  • The weakest ending ever, with Sheamus pushing Cena off the top as he was going for a superplex, and Cena took this baby looking bump.  That’s how we settle a score here in WWE.

 

The Undertaker (c) defeated Batista in a chairs match for the World Heavyweight Championship

  • Only one current guy here, and it’s the freaking Undertaker, a guy who averages 1.2 matches per year!  Now 4-7.
  • The heat for this match is Big Dave killing Rey.  What? 
  • A zombie wearing the Pope’s garb sporting MMA gloves is just confusing.
  • No “gun show” for Big Dave.  That sucks.  That was the best part of his entrance.
  • Since all chairs are legal, I would like to see some more variety, and have someone use a high chair, or a beanbag chair.  Hey WWE, would it kill you to get the stipulation over first by having someone DQ’d for using an ottoman? 
  • All wrestlers please choose to either stomp or kick.  Lift your foot high and stomp it down, or bring it back and kick it forward.  Doing some combo looks awful.   It looks like my mom trying to pass a soccer ball in the font yard.
  • Winner out of nowhere with Big Dave winning after a low blow.  Uh oh, Teddy Long is out to keep the match alive.  Let’s see if they follow the typical WWE script of going only 90 more seconds on the restart… Nope, way less. 
  • One problem with the chairs match was that they weren’t allowed to hit the guy in the head.  If you can’t do that, then don’t do a chairs match because it’s stupid to believe that the most effective way to use a chair will never happen.  If you were swinging a chair to hurt someone, first, you’d probably swing it sideways like an axe, and second, you’d definitely be aiming for the skull. 

 

Randy Orton defeated Kofi Kingston in a singles match

  • Two for Two here, but Orton is out for a stretch currently, and Kofi has been rebranded as a unicorn.  Now 6-7.
  • If you want to see some remarkable body transformations, look at Randy Orton just once a year at the Royal Rumble.  Get a still shot from each Rumble and see.
  • Oh wait, Ted and Cody were sent to intimidate Kofi, so we have to add to our tally.  Now we’re at 7 still on the roster and 8 gone.
  • Interesting that they put this match on second to last instead a title match, or the girls match.  They must have considered this feud either hot, or dead.
  • Well Kofi, you shouldn’t have trashed a NASCAR that Randy Orton didn’t even buy, and really only owned for like 90 minutes.
  • Nothing match.

 

DX defeated Jeri-Show in a TLC match for the Unified Tag Team Championship

  • Unbelievably, all four of these men have been in a WWE ring in the past month.  I guess Shawn isn’t on the active roster, but what a rib.  Way to build for the future WWE.  So 3-1 in this match, giving us a total of 10 still sort of on the roster, and 9 definitely not on the roster.  Bravo WWE.  You’ve made zero new stars in the 6 years since this match.
  • Was DX ever really neon or was that just this new super lame reincarnation?
  • Dueling chairs with HBK and Jericho was pretty good.
  • Do you think they’d allow you to use any type of ladder?  Yah, same joke a third time… Could you wheel out one of those ladders that rich people had in their study?  What about driving a scissor lift?  Could you pull out a DVD copy of Jacob’s Ladder and throw it?  Too soon? 
  • I hope they’re using a Werner ladder, the official ladder of the NCAA March madness net cutting down ceremony.  I wish I was making that up.  Why do I know that!  I don’t even know my shoe size.  
  • The Code Breaker and the Backstabber look good about 10% of the time. 
  • The Big Show’s big bump was literally off the third rung, which was maybe as high as the second rope, maybe.
  • Well, Jericho is dead.  That final bump off the Big Show’s shoulders was a bad idea.

A thumbs up show if you like TLC style matches, but not spectacular by any means.