Taboo Tuesday (2004)
|Taboo Tuesday (2004)|
|Tagline(s)||"You Control – The fate of Raw superstars, the World Heavyweight Championship, and the Course of History!"|
|Promotion||World Wrestling Entertainment|
|Sponsor(s)||1-800-Call ATT for Collect Calls|
|Date||October 19, 2004|
|Cyber Sunday chronology|
Taboo Tuesday (2004) was a professional wrestling pay-per-view event produced by World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) and presented by AT&T which took place on October 19, 2004 at the Bradley Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. It was the first annual Taboo Tuesday event, marking the first time in which the fans were given the chance to vote on stipulations for the matches. The voting for the event started on October 18, 2004 and ended during the event. Eight professional wrestling matches were featured on the event's card. The buildup to the matches and the scenarios that took place before, during, and after the event were planned by WWE's script writers. The event starred wrestlers from the Raw brand: a storyline expansion of the promotion where employees are assigned to a wrestling brand under the WWE banner.
The main event was a Steel cage match, which is fought in a cage with four sheets of mesh metal around, in, or against the edges of the wrestling ring, in which Randy Orton defeated Ric Flair by pinfall. Two bouts were featured on the undercard. In respective singles matches, World Heavyweight Champion Triple H defeated Shawn Michaels to retain his title and Gene Snitsky defeated Kane in a Weapon of Choice match, a match in which the use of foreign objects, which is usually illegal under the standard rules of professional wrestling, is allowed.
Taboo Tuesday grossed over $215,000 in ticket sales from an attendance of 3,500 and received 174,000 pay-per-view buys. This event helped WWE increase its pay-per-view revenue by $6.2m compared to the previous year. When the event was released on DVD, it reached a peak position of seventh on Billboard's DVD Sales Chart.
Taboo Tuesday was the first regularly-scheduled pay-per-view held by WWE on a Tuesday since 1991's This Tuesday in Texas, the first regularly-scheduled non-Sunday pay-per-view since the 1994 Survivor Series, and the first non-Sunday pay-per-view of any kind since In Your House 8: Beware of Dog 2 in 1996.
Unlike most WWE events, where rules and participants for matches were determined by WWE's creative staff, this was the first event where at least some part of each match was determined by votes from WWE fans conducted on WWE's official website. The event was scheduled to feature eight professional wrestling matches. Various wrestlers were involved in pre-existing scripted feuds, plots and storylines leading to the matches taking place at this event. Wrestlers were portrayed as either villains or fan favorites as they followed a series of tension-building events. The event featured wrestlers and other talent from the Raw brand – a storyline division in which WWE assigned its on-air talent to separate television brands.
The main event at Taboo Tuesday was a match between Randy Orton and Ric Flair where the online fan vote would determine whether the match was a steel cage match, a Falls Count Anywhere match, or a submission match. On the September 27, 2004, episode of Raw — one of WWE's primary television programs — Orton was given an opportunity to face Triple H at Taboo Tuesday for the World Heavyweight Championship if he was able to win a match against Batista, but he was not able to do so. During the singles match, Ric Flair interfered on behalf of Batista. This led to Orton blaming his loss on Flair. Orton commented on everything Flair had accomplished in the WWE and criticized him for calling Triple H the greatest wrestler of all. Flair responded to Orton's comments. He asserted that despite Orton's claim of being a "Legend Killer", wrestlers whom he had defeated such as Shawn Michaels and Mick Foley are not truly legends and therefore do not make Orton a true "Legend Killer". Flair also announced that he and Orton would meet in a match at Taboo Tuesday and the fans would have the opportunity to choose what type of match they would compete in.
One of the featured matches on the under-card was contested for the World Heavyweight Championship, in which Triple H would have to defend the title against the fans' choice of three possible opponents: Chris Benoit, Edge, or Shawn Michaels. At Unforgiven, Raw's previous pay-per-view event, Triple H defeated Randy Orton to capture the World Heavyweight Championship. The following night on Raw, Triple H had a celebration thrown in his honor, complete with women, confetti, streamers and a giant cake. Orton, however, sought revenge by coming out of the cake and assaulting the three members of Evolution, Triple H's stable with Ric Flair and Batista, which Orton had previously been a part of. On the October 4 episode of Raw, it was announced that because Orton has not won the opportunity to challenge Triple H, fans would be able to choose between three potential contenders for Triple H's World title at Taboo Tuesday. Chris Benoit and Edge were revealed as two of the candidates. Shawn Michaels, however, competed in a qualifying match, which saw him defeat Christian, to become the third candidate. On the October 18 episode of Raw, a standard match involving three wrestlers, called a Triple Threat match, was scheduled between Benoit, Edge, and Michaels. Edge won the match after he pinned Benoit by using the ring ropes for unfair leverage. During the match, Michaels legitimately injured his left knee, tearing his meniscus.
The other featured preliminary match was between Kane and Gene Snitsky. At Unforgiven, Shawn Michaels defeated Kane in a no disqualification match, a match where neither wrestler can be disqualified, allowing for weapons and outside interference. The next night on Raw, Kane demanded that authority figure Eric Bischoff, a portrayed match-maker and rule-enforcer, give him a rematch against Michaels, but Bischoff refused to do so as Michaels was preoccupied with appearing in Chris Jericho's interview segment, The Highlight Reel. Bischoff, however, scheduled Kane in a no disqualification match against an opponent of Bischoff's choice. Kane's opponent was revealed to be Gene Snistky. During the match, Kane's scripted wife, Lita, who was pregnant in the storyline, entered the ring. This led to Kane accidentally falling on top of her after Snitsky hit Kane with a steel chair, ending the match. Trainers and emergency medical technicians rushed to the scene and took Lita away in an ambulance for medical attention. The following week, Kane was informed by doctors that Lita suffered a scripted miscarriage following the events of the previous week. On the September 27 episode of Raw, in an interview with Todd Grisham, Kane informed Grisham that he sought revenge against Snitsky for his actions. The following week, Lita gave her first interview since the miscarriage and revealed that she and Kane would get payback against Snitsky. During the same episode, Snitsky was interviewed by Raw commentator Jim Ross and told Ross that the death of the couple's unborn child was not his fault. Kane interrupted the interview segment, but Snitsky attacked Kane with a lead pipe in self-defense. This led Bischoff to announce a Weapon of Choice match for Taboo Tuesday, where fans would be able to vote on whether a lead pipe, a steel chain, or a steel chair would be legal for use in the match.
The main Divas feud entering the event was between Christy Hemme and Carmella DeCesare, the two finalists in the Raw Diva Search. On the September 20 episode of Raw, Christy was announced as the winner of the Diva Search and received a one-year contract with WWE and $250,000. After the Diva Search, Carmella became a villainess and began a feud with Christy, due to jealousy of Christy winning the Diva Search. On the last edition of Raw before Taboo Tuesday, it was announced that Christy and Carmella would face each other at the pay-per-view with the fans choosing what type of match they would compete in. The choices were a Lingerie Pillow Fight, an Evening Gown Match, or an Aerobics Challenge. After the announcement was made, Carmella attacked Christy.
The first televised match was for the WWE Intercontinental Championship, in which Chris Jericho defended the title against Shelton Benjamin, who won the fans' vote with 37%. The match started off with Jericho performing an enzuigiri, an attack that strikes the back of the head. This was followed with Jericho on the top ropes, which was countered when Benjamin jumped on the ropes and performed a superplex on Jericho. Later in the match, Jericho performed variety of signature move attempts, such as grabbing Benjamin's head and driving his face into the mat and springboarding the middle rope to perform a backflip, but Benjamin countered the attacks. The match came to an end when Benjamin performed a T-Bone Suplex on Jericho and gaining the pinfall victory and becoming the new Intercontinental Champion.
The voting results for Triple H's opponent for the World Heavyweight Championship were then revealed, with Shawn Michaels winning. The next match was a Fulfill Your Fantasy Battle Royal match for the WWE Women's Championship between Molly Holly, Stacy Keibler, Victoria, Gail Kim, Jazz, Nidia, and Trish Stratus, an elimination style match where the last person in the ring is the winner. The first to be eliminated was Nidia, which was followed with the elimination of Jazz. Kim performed a hurricanrana on Victoria, a move that is executed by jumping forward and straddling on a standing opponent's shoulders, but Victoria countered the move as she sent Kim out of the ring, thus being eliminated from the match. Victoria was eliminated afterwards by both Stratus and Molly, after they double teamed Victoria. Stratus and Molly continued working together, as they got the upper hand over Keibler. Molly eliminated Keibler from the match. This led Stratus to catch Molly off-guard, as she pushed her through the ropes to retain her WWE Women's Championship.
The third match was between Gene Snitsky and Kane (with Lita). The match was a Weapons of Choice match, which gained 41% of the vote. The match began with Kane, as he grabbed a chain and used it against Snitsky's head. Snitsky regained the momentum by grabbing the chain and swinging the chain onto Kane's head and proceeding to choke Kane with it. Back and forth action took place; the match, however, came to an end when Snitsky came off of the second rope onto a steel chair that was wrapped around Kane's neck and pinned him for the win.
The next match was between General Manager Eric Bischoff and Eugene in a "Choose the Loser's Fate". The match saw Eugene defeat Bischoff, after Eugene performed a leg drop to get the pinfall victory. After the match ended, the audience voted that Bischoff get his head shaved. Jonathan Coachman, however, announced that the audience instead voted "Loser is Winners Servant", in which he and Bischoff would be Eugene's servants for five minutes. WWE Chairman Vince McMahon came out and reversed the stipulation and announced that Bischoff would get his head shaved. McMahon warned that if Bischoff did not go through it, he would be fired. Eugene shaved Bischoff's hair and Coachman was forced to wear a dress for messing up the outcome of the match.
The fifth match was for the World Tag Team Championships between La Résistance (Sylvain Grenier and Robért Conway) against Edge and Chris Benoit, the two individuals who were not chosen to face Triple H for the World Heavyweight championship. There was back and forth action between the two teams, as all the superstars were able to participate in the match. Edge abandoned Benoit during the match, which forced Benoit to wrestle both members of La Résistance by himself. Benoit fought them off, and he was able to get the upper hand over Grenier. The match concluded with Benoit winning the World Tag Team Championship, after he locked his hands together and pulled Conway's face and pulling his neck backwards, a move which Benoit calls the Crippler Crossface, making Conway submit to the hold.
Main event matches
The next match was between Christy Hemme and Carmella DeCesare. The match was a Lingerie Pillow Fight, which gained 57% of the fans' vote. During this match, Hemme and DeCesare began hitting each other with pillows while wearing lingerie. The match ended when Hemme covered DeCesare to win the match via pinfall. The seventh match was the World Heavyweight Championship match, where the fans' chose Shawn Michaels by 38%, to face the champion, Triple H for the championship. Coming into the match, Michaels' knee was legitimately injured. Triple H used the injury to his advantage during the beginning of the bout, as he hit and targeted the leg, including applying a Figure four leglock on Michaels. Michaels would however, gain the advantage when he countered a maneuver by Triple H, which had him hit the steel ring post. Later into the match, as Michaels was about to perform Sweet Chin Music on Triple H, Edge interfered in the match and hit Michaels with a spear. Following this, Triple H covered Michaels to win the match via pinfall and retain the World Heavyweight Championship.
The main event and final match of the night was between Randy Orton and Ric Flair. The match was a steel cage match, which gained 68% of the vote. During the match, both Orton and Flair managed to get the upper hand. A spot in the match saw Flair hit a low blow on Orton and proceeding to send him crashing head-first into the steel cage, causing Orton to bleed from the head, the blood loss results from previous cuts that wrestlers perform before a match called blading. Orton regained the momentum by sending Flair into the steel cage, thus resulting in Flair to bleed from the head. The match concluded with Orton performing an RKO, a move where you jump to the opponent's head while parallel to the ground, applying a three-quarter facelock and then slam your opponent's head to the mat, Orton then pinned Flair for the pinfall victory. After the match, they shook hands.
Following Taboo Tuesday, Evolution (Triple H, Ric Flair and Batista) were put in charge of Raw, after Eric Bischoff took the night off, following his match the night before. Triple H granted Flair the match of his choice; Flair wanted a rematch against Randy Orton, as he lost a steel cage match to Orton the previous night. Orton accepted Flair's challenge, with a stipulation that if he defeated Flair he would get an opportunity to face Triple H for the World Heavyweight Championship at the November pay-per-view Survivor Series. Orton did not receive the opportunity, as he lost to Flair. On the November 1 episode of Raw, Bischoff scheduled a traditional 8-man elimination tag team match involving Team Orton (Randy Orton, Chris Jericho, Maven and Chris Benoit) facing off against Team Triple H (Triple H, Batista, Edge and Gene Snitsky) at Survivor Series. The winning team would be granted absolute control of running the show for a month, and the winning members would all get a week to be in charge of the program. At the November event, Team Orton defeated Team Triple H and the team were given the opportunity to be in charge of Raw for a week.
On the October 25 episode of Raw, a rematch for the Intercontinental Championship was scheduled between Shelton Benjamin and Chris Jericho. The match saw Benjamin defeat Jericho and retain the title. After the match, Benjamin was attacked by Christian, which led Christian to overhook Benjamin's arms and pivoted him to an 180° thus driving his face onto the mat, a move Christian calls the Unprettier. The following week, Bischoff scheduled an Intercontinental championship match between Benjamin and Christian at Survivor Series. At Survivor Series, Benjamin retained the Intercontinental championship.
In November 2004, Lita returned to the women's division. She began a feud with Trish Stratus after Stratus called Lita "chubby" because of her pregnancy weight gain. Lita challenged Stratus to a WWE Women's Championship match at Survivor Series, however, due to the months of humiliation and being verbally berated by Stratus, Lita was more concerned with doing as much damage as possible, leading to her disqualification.
The Bradley Center had a maximum capacity of 18,000, which was reduced for the event. This event grossed over $215,000 from an approximate attendance of 3,500. It also received 174,000 pay-per-view buys. Taboo Tuesday helped World Wrestling Entertainment earn $24.7 million in revenue from pay-per-view events versus $18.5 million the previous year, which was later confirmed by Linda McMahon on November 23, 2004 in a quarterly result. Canadian Online Explorer's professional wrestling section rated the event 5 out of 10 stars. The rating was lower than the Taboo Tuesday event in 2005, which was rated 7 out of 10 stars. The Steel cage match was rated a ten of ten stars. The Lingerie Pillow Fight match was rated zero out of 10 stars.
Battle royal eliminations
|4||Victoria||Trish Stratus and Molly Holly|
|5||Stacy Keibler||Molly Holly|
|6||Molly Holly||Trish Stratus|
|Opponent for Chris Jericho||
|Outfit for the Fulfill Your Fantasy Diva Battle Royal||
|Weapon for the Weapon of Choice match||
|Stipulations for Eugene versus Eric Bischoff||
|Stipulations for Christy Hemme versus Carmella||
|Opponent for Triple H||
|Stipulations for Randy Orton versus Ric Flair||
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