Battle Royal At The Albert Hall
James Dixon: This is another tape release that has its ordering screwed up by the strange UK catalogue system. It is a UK exclusive show from the historical Albert Hall on October 3rd 1991. Wrestling (and boxing) were both banned from the venue for a number of years until it was once again permitted in 2012. It is certainly an historical venue with a very distinctive and unique look. It almost seems wrong to have the WWF running a show there, and the opera boxes in the background amplify that somewhat.
The Nasty Boys vs. The Rockers
Imagine a night out on the town with these guys! The Rockers were coming towards the end of their run as a team, with Shawn in line for a big singles push. The Nasty’s were former WWF tag team champions, having lost the belts to LOD not long before the show. They act like they are working the holiday camps, as they do the old “boo/yeah” spot to start with, seeking fan approval. The crowd is rabid though and bites for it. You can feel the excitement in the air at having the WWF in the country, when it used to still be a novelty. The Rockers start things quickly as ever, and they send the Nasties reeling twice with their speed. The Nasty Boys threaten to leave and argue with the crowd, and this has very much been played for and aimed at the live audience. They are stalling and using cheap tactics to provoke a reaction, because that is all they need to do. Jannetty outwrestles Knobbs, so Sags tries his luck and fares little better. The Rockers have dominated completely here, with the Nasty Boys barely getting an offensive move so far. Jannetty takes Sags down with an armdrag before locking on an arm stretch. Michaels comes in and does the same thing without making the tag. In a first, the ref questions the lack of tag and asks the crowd if they really made one, to which they reply in the affirmative. The ref believes them! Those lying British swines! They do a really convoluted spot next where Shawn runs the ropes only for Knobbs to pull them down and send Shawn tumbling to the outside. The problem is, Knobbs pulled them down WAY too early and clearly in Shawn’s line of sight, yet he carried on running and fell out anyway. The Nasty Boys control Shawn following that, and Sags slows it down by putting on a bearhug. Michaels fights out but gets quickly cut off. Knobbs comes in and drops an elbow across the back and puts on a chinlock, but Shawn stands up in it and falls backwards to escape. He makes the tag, but the referee is distracted by Sags so it doesn’t count. Michaels manages the tag soon after anyway, and Jannetty comes in and takes on both Nasties on his own. Sags accidentally elbow drops Knobbs and then everyone is in there. The Nasties are whipped into each other, and that is enough for the win… Only it isn’t, because they make a real hash of the finish. The ref counted and the crowd cheered, but it wasn’t the fall. Clearly someone was out of position somewhere. The Rockers quickly improvise and go for the cover again, and this time Jimmy Hart gets involved, allowing Sags to drop a megaphone shot onto Jannetty’s head for the win. Shame about the finish, because the match was energetic. They took as many shortcuts as possible because the crowd ate it up, but it was entertaining regardless.
Final Rating: **¼