DVDs - VGames - Books DVD Review: Burgan reviews Extreme Fan Cam 10/23/99 - Sandman returns to ECW in a classic moment
Aug 1, 2005 - 3:44:00 PM
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By Derek Burgan, Torch Media Guy
Torch DVD Review
Extreme Fan Cam: Sandman Returns
October 23, 1999 at the ECW Arena
I have seen plenty of Sandman in recent months, including the recently reviewed Extreme Summit: Sex, Drugs and Wrestling. I’d be hard pressed to find a more charismatic person in wrestling and that’s saying something. It is easy to see why Sandman became such a star in wrestling and an icon in ECW. This latest DVD, Extreme Fan Cam: Sandman Returns, is the show in which Sandman came back to ECW after spending a year in WCW. If you remember from my review of Summit, Sandman said he left ECW because he had a handshake deal with Paul Heyman with the understanding he would be the highest paid wrestler in the company and found out Sabu was getting a bigger pay per view payoff.
For more on the situation, let’s send it over to Torch ECW Historian Keith Lipinski: Sandman’s final ECW feud before leaving for WCW was against Justin Credible with the sexiest man alive, Jason. Sandman was defeated by Justin Credible at the ECW Arena on August 8, 1998 to set up a feud to put the 22 year old Credible over more. Sandman then appeared on WCW television first in late 1998 as Raven’s next door neighbor “James” during the angle where Raven was sent home to his mother’s due to his deep depression with his sister Chastity and Kanyon. (Burgan Note: Dear LORD, I forgot all about this dumb shit) James was his next door neighbor in beautiful sunny Florida. I remember sandman’s first appearance on 1/7/99 on Thunder. The next week on Nitro (1/11/99) Raven and James were playing backgammon. What I remember about this: Raven's wearing two different color socks and wanted his high school yearbook. Raven’s mom said they moved it into the garage, because his grandma has Raven’s room. Raven found a bunch of Roddy Piper wrestling pictures.
Yes, that was it. And it was odd as it was either setting up a Piper vs. Raven feud or Raven had a mancrush on the great Scot! Sandman then was seen next as the “king of the extreme” and came out with the cane (no cigarette even though Big Show did it a few months earlier) and the plastic barb wire he officially debuted on 2/1/99 beating up on van hammer with his cane. After a bunch of unwatchable non-sense, Sandman started appearing as Hardcore Hak and had PPV matches at Uncensored, Spring Stampede, Great American Bash and Bash at the Beach, all in ’99.
Whew! So basically, ECW fans had to watch one of their true icons go to WCW and be handled horribly.
On to the DVD!
This show took place at the legendary ECW Arena, and this is after ECW dumped a ton of money into the building because of their, in retrospect, horrible deal with TNN. The video footage itself is shot from a hard camera position and it looks awesome. Some fan cams have so so quality, some of good quality and a very few, such as Sandman Returns have great quality. The camera was filming the building before the show started and you will quickly see why the ECW fans were known as the most vocal and loyal fans in the wrestling universe as with absolutely nothing going on they were loudly chanting “ECDub!” Soon after they started chanting “Joey!” for ECW announcer Joey Styles, who would come to the ring to open every show. Styles finally made his way to the ring and the crowd went nuts again.
Joey Styles, the voice of ECW
***Styles pumped up the crowd some more, even though before seeing it I would have said this would be impossible, until Lou E. Dangerously came to the ring. Lou was formally known as Sign Guy Dudley until a gimmick makeover made him a heel manager parodying ECW booker Paul Heyman (a/k/a Paul E Dangerously.) The ECW Arena crowd then brought the chant “F—you Sign Guy” to an eleven on the loudness scale. This is incredible. Lou told Styles that he sucked and the crowd went off with another “Shut the F--- up” chant. Lou said he was the greatest manager in wrestling today which prompted the crowd to chant both, “Paul E” and “F--- him up, Paul E, F--- him up!” The camera actually panned over to the side where Paul Heyman was arguing, from up on a stage, with Lou in the ring. Lou then said that he was going to bring in a former ECW Heavyweight champion of the world that “no one has forgotten.” Over the speakers, Beck’s “Loser” played and out came former ECW mainstay Mikey Whipwreck! Keep in mind that Mikey hadn’t been seen in ECW since he left for WCW in 1998. Mikey got a big “Welcome back” chant from the fans and it must have felt good as Whipwreck’s WCW career consisted of one good PPV match against Billy Kidman (back when Kidman was cool, if newer readers can even believe a time existed) and less than ten throwaway matches on Thunder and Nitro.
(1) Mike Awesome (w/Judge Jeff Jones) beat Mikey Whipwreck (w/Lou E. Dangerously) to retain the ECW World Heavyweight title. It’s weird to see the crowd go apeshit for Awesome knowing that not a half a year later Awesome would try to go to WCW with the ECW Title, until a court order prevented it and forced him to come back and drop the title (which happened on an infamous match in April when a WWE wrestler – Tazz – beat a WCW wrestler – Awesome – in an ECW ring. You can buy that show by Clicking HERE.) Anyhoo, Awesome completely decimated Whipwreck to start the match and within one minute had dived off the ring apron to Whipwreck on the floor. Awesome threw Whipwreck into the crowd and then dived over the guardrail to hit Mikey with another move. Wow! WCW made this guy into the Fat Chick Thrilla?! That deserves a WTF. Back in the ring Whipwreck was able to mount some offense after a hurricanrana off the top rope followed by a missile dropkick and a pin attempt. This only got a one count. Whipwreck went up top, but was caught by Awesome, and given a Splash Mountain through a table on the floor. Crowd chanted “HOLY SHIT” which is exactly what I said when I say it happen. Incredible. Awesome then hit a top rope Frog Splash for the win. (6:40) What an awesome (wink, wink) start to the show. Say what you will about his 84 finishers and his ethical decisions, but Awesome was fun to watch.
Mike Awesome, ECW World champ
(2) Nova beat Chris Candido (w/Tammy Lynn Sytch). Nova came to the ring to the Beastie Boys’ Intergalactic song. Candido looked to be in the best shape of his life for this match. Instead of the referee checking Sytch for foreign objects, Candido handled the duty. Nova hit Candido with a sweet looking missile dropkick a couple minutes into the match, which sent Candido to the floor. While outside the ring, Candido put on Hat Guy’s straw hat for a big pop. Out of nowhere came a “Hardcore Holly” chant and I’ll admit I had no idea what that was referring to. Candido got back into the ring and hit a British Bulldog-like standing suplex on Nova. But Nova came back with a back body drop and a bulldog for a two count. Nova then hit Candidio with what looked like the Edgecution, twice. Nova went up to the top rope and got distracted by Sytch, who had climbed to the ring apron. Chris Chetti came down to ringside, grabbed Sytch, and carried her to the back. Candido then gave Nova a superplex, but missed a follow up top rope headbutt. Nova then finished off Candido with a Kryptonite Krunch. (9:15)
Chris Candido pats down Tammy Lynn Sytch
Candido, with Hat Guy's straw hat on
As a sidenote, during this time, the Torch reported that Tammy Sytch passed out after the October 23 ECW arena show. It was sometime after 1 am that she passed out in a chair in the locker room. Witnesses say that Sytch vomited, urinated on herself, and threw up all over her make up kit. There is speculation because of Sytch's symptom that she took GHB. It's a drug that slows down the heart rate. It burns fat while a person sleeps. The drug comes in a powder form and can be taken straight or mixed with liquid. Sytch is currently being forced to take drug tests by ECW in the state of New Jersey because of a legal incident. Heyman told the Torch that the claims of Sytch vomiting and urinating were untrue or at least exaggerated but he does admit that there was an incident. He said "this is obviously a matter of concern and something we are looking in to. We have no conclusive facts yet but when we do, we'll make our move." Sytch is telling people that she did not know what happened and denied using drugs when questioned. She is telling people that she may have accidentally grabbed someone else's non-alcoholic drink by mistake that was spiked. It is believed that she used the explanation with legal officials in New Jersey. If drugs are found in her system she will be at the mercy of the court and could face time in treatment or jail. Paul Heyman told the Torch that if she is arrested she would be fired from ECW but he would not go so far as to say he wouldn't eventually take her back. Candido also talked about this in his Shoot Interview I reviewed not that long ago.
***This was a TV taping for ECW, but since this was a Fan Cam we got to see stuff after the match that wasn’t aired on TV. Chetti and Sytch came back to the ring after the match and celebrated with Candido and Nova. Paul Heyman even came down to hug Candido. This was a good moment.
***Amish Roadkill, “Dastardly” Danny Doring and Miss Congeniality made their way to the ring. For those out of the loop, Miss Congeniality is currently known as Lita in the WWE and her gimmick in ECW was that her character was a total slut. While Doring shot a promo, out came Cyrus the Virus (Don Callis) and Elektra for what Cyrus called “intellectual intercourse.” Cyrus said it was pathetic that “the greatest talker in wrestling has to come out with a woman just to get on TV.” Amen playah. Cyrus offered Doring a deal, for Miss Congeniality, “straight up.” Elektra played up to Doring and Doring actually grabbed Roadkill’s hat to hide his erection. Good stuff. Cyrus said about Elecktra “this girl would just as soon f--- as eat, and she’s never missed a meal.” OH!
Amish Roadkill, Miss Congeniality (Lita) and Danny Doring
Lita went up to Doring and said she thought her and Danny had something special. Lita said she thought the two were going to get married one day. Man, this is weird to watch after the whole Matt Hardy situation. Doring told Lita that what he said was just pillow talk and that he says it to every girl he’s with. Doring then called Lita “a slimey ho.” Lita slapped Doring in the face for a response. Doring came back and took out Lita followed by a top rope splash by Roadkill. Doring then made out with Elecktra. As Lita sold the beating in the ring, Cyrus stood over her and said, “you tell Vince, Cyrus said hi.” Yes, this was Lita’s farewell to ECW on her way to WWE land.
(3) Super Crazy beat Little Guido (w/Big Sal Grazianno) and Spike Dudley in a Three Way Dance. Spike gave his glasses to a fan in the front row who was dressed up just like him. I think that fan was a girl. And Lipinski tells me that in ECW storyline, that was Spike’s girlfriend. Molly Holly’s gonna be pissed! Guido, who is now known as Nunzio in the WWE, took the glasses and smashed them in the ring as the fan went nuts. After the match started it was a series of fast paced spots and all three of these guys can go. A couple minutes in Little Guido did a good reversal of Dudley’s Acid Drop into an arm submission. Guido and Dudley fought into the crowd as Crazy hit them both with an awesome looking Asai Moonsault onto the both of them. There was then a CHAIR BATTLE in the crowd while the rest of the ECW Arena chanted “Can’t see shit!” More crazy stuff then happened outside the ring including Dudley giving Super Crazy a hurricanrana off the guardrail! Big Sal set up a table to bodyslam Dudley on, but Spike reversed it and ended up giving Big Sal an Acid Drop through the table by jumping off the guardrail. This was great. Dudley went back inside the ring and went to give an Acid Drop to Guido, but Guido countered it into a pin and eliminated Dudley. Super Crazy brought Guido to the corner and began punching Guido in the face as the crowd counted to ten in Spanish. Classic! Both men had a CHOP BATTLE in the middle of the ring leading to a DDT courtesy of Super Crazy. Then Crazy gave Guido three straight moonsaults, one off each turnbuckle, but Guido put his knees up on the top turnbuckle attempt. Crazy then hit a brainbuster for a two count and ended up finishing Guido off with a Crazy Bomb. (10:50)
***Simon Diamond came to the ring with a huge, jakked up wrestler. Diamond said that Philly had a problem, so he brought along his new friend “Dick.” GET IT! IT’S A BIG DICK JOKE! BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA This was the introduction of Big Dick Hertz. Crowd chanted “you suck Dick!” Simon responded by saying “Dick will be watching Simon’s rear at all times” along with other stuff like “look at my Dick. My Dick is huge!” and “my Dick is swollen and vascular!” Out of nowhere came Jazz, at the time known as the girl with no name, who said she was sick and tired of all of this and gave a couple shots to Diamond before a pin attempt. Jazz was picked up by Big Dick and given an F-5 type move. The refs came in and stretchered Jazz out.
Simon Diamond and Big Dick
(4) Tajiri (w/Steve Corino & Jack Victory) beat Jerry Lynn (w/Taped Ribs). Tajiri was announced as weighting “83 kilos” and Lynn got a huge “Jerry” chant from the crowd. Tajiri was ultra heel here and actually spit into the crowd to start off the match. The two men had a forearm battle which led to a stiff kick by Tajiri. Lynn yelled “I can take it!” Tajiri then gave Lynn a stiff kick to the head. Lynn got right back up and yelled “I can take it!” Tajiri then stiff kicked Lynn in the ribs. LYNN DOWN! Tajiri went on offense and the ECW fans chanted “Hiroshima.” Jesus. Can you f---ing imagine how American fans would react if at during a tour of the Middle East fans chanted “9/11” at Kurt Angle? Tajiri followed up with some chops in the corner and a Tarantula! I’ll never get sick of seeing that move. Tajiri then spit into the crowd again. Well, they deserved it that time. This is Tajiri with about ONE BILLION times the charisma he gets to show in the WWE, even getting to do his wild screams and crazy crab-like movements which I totally mark out for.
The Japanese Buzzsaw, Tajiri
Tajiri hit a handspring elbow which sent Lynn to the outside of the ring. Tajiri jumped off the ring apron and hit Lynn with a chair shot. A busted open Lynn grabbed a chair of his own and headed back into the ring. Lynn used his chair to block a shot of GREEN MIST by Tajiri and then hit the Japanese Buzzsaw with a Rock Bottom-like move onto the chair for a two count. Tajiri attempted another handspring elbow, but was caught by Lynn and nailed with a German suplex. There was a chop battle in the corner before both men fought up to the top rope. Tajiri ended up coming off the top with a sunset flip for a two count. Then came one of my favorite chants of the night, “CORINO TAKES IT UP THE ASS, DOO DAH, DOO DAH.” For some God knows reason I love those Doo Dah chants.
A crazy piledriver by Lynn brought Corino into the ring for the save. Corino began punching Lynn before getting nailed by the same piledriver than Tajiri took. Lynn then dived out of the ring onto Jack Victory, who was in a wheelchair, to take him out of the equation. Back in the ring Tajiri hit Lynn with the RED MIST, gave him a stiff kick to the head and finished Lynn off with a brainbuster. (12:00) I loved this match and is my new all time favorite Jerry Lynn match. All hail Steve Corino as well.
That is some bad looking ring gear
(5) Kid Kash versus Tom Marquez went to a No Contest after interference from Da Baldies. Marquez has one of the worst ring outfits in the history of wrestling and was previously Tiger Ali Singh’s man servant Babu in the WWE. Kash shot a promo before the match saying that last week he was on TV and got interrupted, so this week Kash was going to take out his frustration on Marquez. Kash hit a missile drop kick about a minute in with a sweet looking kip up, but was quickly jumped by Da Baldies as the crowd chanted “RIGHT SAID FRED!” I honestly can’t believe current ROH star, Carnage Crew member DeVito was in that good of shape. DeVito challenged Balls Mahoney and Axl Rotten to come out and find out who the real hardcore, chair swinging freaks really were. Out came Axl and Balls to a big pop.
Balls Mahoney, a chair swinging freak
Balls and Axl punched DeVito and Angel out of the ring. Big Vito stood toe to toe with Balls in the middle of the ring until taking a chair shot by Axl in the back. Keep in mind that Rotten is the babyface in all of this. Balls then hit Vito with a gigantic shot to the head with a chair. A big fat black guy jumped both Axl and Balls leading to the rest of Da Baldies to come back and join the attack. The crowd chanted “NEW JACK” and not long after Dr. Dre’s Natural Born Killaz hit and the crowd went bonkers as New Jack ran to the ring with his garbage can full of toys. Jack started nailing everybody in the ring with gimmicks, including a baby powdered up guitar on DeVito. Take that SLAP NUTS! Angel then had one of those hand staplers and stapled Jack right in the eye. Yikes. The EMTs came down and New Jack sold forever as Da Baldies celebrated to the back.
New Jack plants a garbage can shot on a Baldie
(6) Rob Van Dam (w/Bill Alfonso) versus Sabu (w/Bill Alfonso) went to a time limit draw, allowing RVD to hold the ECW TV title. Crowd popped big with a “SABU” chant but popped even louder when Van Dam walked out to Pantera’s ”Walk.” I didn’t even notice Fonzie slipping to the back after coming out with Sabu so that he could also come out with RVD. The first several minutes of the match had each guy countering the others moves and the audience responding with polite claps. After a belly-to-belly suplex from RVD got a two count, Fonzie jumped on the apron with a water bottle bottle and sprayed water into Van Dam’s mouth in a move that you would see after a round of boxing. Fonzie accidentally squirted RVD in the face, which caused the crowd to chant “you f---ed up!” The two fought outside the ring and RVD crotched Sabu on a guardrail before nailing Sabu with a flying kick sending Sabu into the crowd. RVD then jumped off the guardrail with a somersault kick, bringing out the ”ECDub! ECDub!” chant. As Sabu climed out of the crowd, he was halfway across the guardrail when RVD came flying off the ring apron with a legdrop. AWESOME.
RVD with his trademark pose
Sabu got on offense and set up a table between the ring apron and the guardrail outside the ring. Sabu laid RVD on the table and went back in the ring and set up a chair. As Sabu ran the ropes, RVD got off the table, but Sabu adjusted his leap to still nail Van Dam. Sabu then laid RVD across the table again and came off the top rope with a psychotic leg dive, breaking the table. Back in the ring RVD hit Sabu with the Rolling Thunder while holding a chair. Van Dam then monkeyflipped Sabu onto a chair and got a two count. This led to a series of moves in which both guys got two count pins on the other that was very reminiscent of Randy Savage versus Steamboat at WrestleMania III. RVD tied up Sabu in the corner in a Tree of Woe before hitting Sabu with a baseball slide while also using a chair. This led to RVD putting Sabu up in a surfboard! The crowd was having a battle of their own with seemingly half chanting “F--- Van Dam” and the other half chanting “F--- Sabu!” All of a sudden an even louder chant yelled “SHUT THE F--- UP!” Sabu was able to hit a hurricanrana off the top rope followed by a leg drop using a chair (Arbian Facebuster.) The bell rang and the crowd chanted “BULLSHIT!!” as the ring announcer said that the time limit had expired. Out came a “Paul E sucks” chant. They turn fast at the ECW Arena. The announcer said the match was a draw, which brought out an even louder “BULLSHIT” chant.
Rob Van Dam grabbed the microphone and told Sabu, “tonight, I’m gonna beat you f---ing ass.” The two men went face to face before going at it and the bell rang again. Sabu put RVD in the Camel Clutch right away and the crowd went BANANAS. Van Dam was able to flip out and went to apply a Camel Clutch of his own, but Sabu made it to the ropes. Both men then had a CHAIR BATTLE, which Sabu got the better of, but RVD was able to put Sabu on the top rope and come off with a hurricanrana onto a chair. RVD then hit an Arbian Facebuster of his own for a two count. The crowd couldn’t believe Sabu kicked out and yelled “SABU! SABU!” Sabu came back and hit a DDT followed by an Arabian Facebuster off the top rope, which caused a thunderous “ECWDub” chant. Kick out at two! Sabu hit a springboard legdrop. Two count. Springboard moonsault. Two count. Then the bell rang.
The ring announcer said that, again, the time limit has expired and the match was a draw. Here came the “BULLSHIT” chants and “No F---ing Draw!” chants. Van Dam refused to shake Sabu’s hand and left the ring. Sabu jumped off the top rope and nailed RVD on the floor. The bell rang and the announcer said “the match will go FIVE MORE MINUTES!” The crowd was happy again.
Outside the ring, Sabu crotched RVD on the guardrail and gave Van Dam a hurricanrana to the floor. Sabu tossed RVD into the ring and applied a leg submission, but Van Dam used his other leg to kick his way out of that. Van Dam was then able to hit the Five Star Frog Splash for a two count. RVD went back up for a split legged moonsault for another two count. Sabu came back with a springboard leg drop for a two count of his own. After a series of roll ups the bell rang as the five minutes were up and the match finally ended. I loved this match.
(7) Justin Credible & Lance Storm (w/Dawn Marie & Jason Knight) versus Raven & Tommy Dreamer (w/Francine) went to a No Contest when the Sandman made his return. Raven and Dreamer retained the ECW Tag Team titles. Raven got the biggest pop of all the guys in the ring and made a blind tag on Dreamer to start the match, which got the crowd to laugh. The gimmick was that Dreamer and Raven despised each other, but were forced to team together as long as they held the tag belts. Both did spots to deliberately get the other in trouble with the heels. Soon both Raven and Dreamer began punching each other but then jumped both Credible and Storm. Raven put Credible on a table and Dreamer went to the tope rope, but Raven dumped Dreamer off the top and came off with a move by himself. Storm held Dawn Marie as Raven kept Francine back from attacking each other, but Dreamer grabbed Raven and gave him a neckbreaker. Dreamer then turned around to be on the receiving end of a superkick by Storm for a two count.
Credible came in for some boots to Dreamer before tagging Storm back in. Storm came in with a springboard clothesline to Dreamer’s back. Credible gave Storm a chair, but Storm threw it back out. Storm hit Dreamer with a suplex that only got a one count, so Storm said he would take the chair now. I liked that bit. Storm went for another suplex, but Dreamer countered with a Russian leg sweep onto the chair. Raven and Credible both got a hot tag and Raven got the advantage by throwing Credible into a chair set up in the corner. Raven then threw Storm into Credible. Raven and Dreamer gave each heel a DDT, but Dawn Marie came in to stop Raven’s pin on Credible at two. In came Francine and a cat fiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight!” began. Tommy Dreamer grabbed Dawn and set her up for a piledriver, but Rhino ran to the ring and clothesline Dreamer. Rhino then gave Dreamer a spinebuster. Raven came in for the save, but was caned by Credible. Dreamer then got caned as well. Storm then hit a Cradledriver on Dreamer while Credible hit a That’s Incredible on Raven and both went for simultaneous pins.
1…2..THE LIGHTS WENT OUT.
The crowd was buzzing and all of a sudden a spotlight pointed to the back of the Arena where the Sandman stood with his cane. To say the fans went crazy apeshit nuts would be the understatement of the year. Watching this on a TV was f---ing awesome as the electricity in the building was as alive as ever. Metallica’s Enter Sandman began playing and the crowd was more nuts then at any point during the show. The crowd was singing along to the song as Sandman made his way to the ring. Sandman came in and caned Jason Knight. Sandman went to cane the rest of the heels but Steve Corino and Jack Victory ran to the ring to get Rhino out of there. Both Victory and Corino got caned for their efforts. The crowd was singing through all of this and it was just insanely surreal. The heels dragged Rhino to the back as a MONSTROUS “Welcome Back” chant was going on. The crowd went straight from this chant back to singing the Enter Sandman song. You have to see this. Weirdest thing you’ll ever see on a wrestling show, but at the same time it was beautiful. When the song was over a big “ECDub” chant started up.
The Sandman is BACK
Raven did his arm pose to Sandman before leaving the ring while Dreamer and Francine stayed. Sandman gave Dreamer a beer and they bother chugged one back. Dreamer gave Francine a beer and she poured it down as well. Dreamer and Sandman hugged as the crowd shouted “ECDub” to end the show just as it started.
Overall Thoughts:I would have no problem recommending this DVD if solely for the actually return of the Sandman, it’s that amazing, but the fact that the rest of the card is top-to-bottom loaded is the icing on the cake. If you loved Hardcore Homecoming, buy this show. If you loved One Night Stand, buy this show. If you loved ECW, buy this show. I can’t imagine a wrestling fan not loving every minute of this DVD. You want to know why Paul Heyman is labeled a genius? Buy this DVD. RVD unchained. Lita in ECW. Tajiri when he was cool. Mike Awesome showing why he was once the true Next Big Thing. This DVD has it all and can be bought by Clicking HERE. I’d throw more superlatives at the show, but I’m still in a state of euphoria just writing this review as I was watching the matches.
Special Thanks to “Mr. ECW” Keith Lipinski for his help with this review.
Torch Media Guy Derek Burgan has been writing for the PWTorch website for almost four years. If you have any questions, corrections, feedback, comments and ideas, he can be reached at:firstname.lastname@example.org
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