In the next edition of the Old School Review, we shall be going back to the year of 2008 when The Greatest Show on the Earth invaded Florida for the first time. It invaded Orlando, Florida in the historic Citrus Bowl. With only three championships on the line, the event was marked by the final in-ring performance of Ric Flair in the WWE. Featuring various celebrities, this is an exceptionally memorable WrestleMania with numerous really good in ring performances. I have a vague recollection of this event, I have definitely seen it before because it is really enjoyable but I haven’t seen it for a little while. So, here I go with the…
WrestleMania 24 Review
The show opens with a fly past by fighter jets, I believe. Lilian Garcia then welcomes us to the show, before introducing John Legend to sing a rendition of “America the Beautiful”. We then go to the opening package, with various talking about WrestleMania for them but also how much things can change in a year. We then head inside the Citrus Bowl for the opening fireworks display, before we are quickly off to the ring for the first match of the evening.
Belfast Brawl: John “Bradshaw” Layfield vs. Finlay (w/ Hornswoggle)
JBL makes his way to the ring first, at which point the history package is shown for the match which surrounds Hornswoggle being Mr McMahon’s illegitimate son before it is revealed he is Finlay’s son. Finlay makes his way to the ring next, and is joined by Hornswoggle and quickly gets down to it with JBL on the outside. This brawl gets underway, and whilst it is basic in the spots undertaken, it is thoroughly entertaining to watch because whilst both men can wrestle, it also suits their personalities. Eventually, JBL wins this enjoyable opening match with a Clothesline from Hell.
Winner: John “Bradshaw” Layfield
Match Rating: 3.0 out of 5.0 Stars
We go backstage to Kim Kardashian talking about the forthcoming Money in the Bank Ladder match, before she is joined by Kennedy who proclaims to win the match for the second year in a row. We then go back to the ring for the next match of the evening.
Money in the Bank Ladder Match: John Morrison vs. Carlito vs. Shelton Benjamin vs. CM Punk vs. Mr. Kennedy vs. MVP vs. Chris Jericho
Each of the competitors make their way to the ring, surprisingly receiving an entrance (they are usually cut due to timing constraints). Anyhow, my first point is I cannot fathom why both the United States and Intercontinental Champions are in this match, surely at least one of those championships should’ve being defended. Anyhow, the match gets underway with various nice spots. The match continues with several cool moments and moves from a variety of wrestlers, which includes a return from Matt Hardy to take out MVP from the top of the ladder with a Twist of Fate. After getting Jericho tangled up in the ladder, CM Punk is able to retrieve the briefcase and win the match in another thoroughly enjoyable match.
Winner: CM Punk
Match Rating: 3.5 out of 5.0 Stars
We go backstage, and see John Cena, Randy Orton and Triple H preparing ahead of their Triple Threat match, before we go to JR and King talking about the 2008 Hall of Fame Ceremony, when a brief montage is shown. We are then taken to Howard Finkel for the Hall of Fame Class of 2008; Jack and Gerry Brisco, Gordon Solie (represented by The Solie Family), Rocky Johnson, Peter Maivia (represented by Ata Johnson and Lia Maivia), Eddie Graham (represented by Mike Graham), Mae Young and Ric Flair (represented by The Flair Family). We then go backstage to Todd Grisham, who is joined by Snoop Dogg. He is joined by various superstars including Santino Marella, Festus and Mick Foley. We then return to the ring for the next match of the evening.
Battle for Brand Supremacy: Batista (SmackDown) vs. Umaga (RAW)
We are welcomed to the match by the RAW GM, William Regal and SmackDown Assistant GM, Teddy Long. Batista makes his way to the ring first, and is soon followed by Umaga. The match gets underway, with Umaga seizing the control of the match in the early moments and is able to show some athletic ability and quickness in order to keep Batista down. Eventually, Batista is able to pick up the win following a Batista Bomb which nearly falls apart when he falls backwards when executing the move. Anyhow, this was an okay match, but nothing special.
Match Rating: 2.5 out of 5.0 Stars