MATCH #1: Inferno Match – Kane vs. Undertaker, Unforgiven, 4.26.98
The visual of the inferno match is admittedly pretty cool. Undertaker attacks first and does what he does. Kane fights back and does what he does. The flames periodically shoot up higher, and that’s just about the only time the crowd pops. Bearer throws a chair into the ring and Kane lands an unprotected shot to the head. Then nothing happens and they go back to doing the same old crap they were doing before. Kane controls for a while but the crowd starts to pick up when Undertaker comes back, only to be cut off by a Kane choke slam. Undertaker gets up and hits one of his own. Then, again, nothing happens. Kane goes up to the top rope and Undertaker crotches him. He follows up with a superplex, and then throws Kane over the ropes to the floor. Kane goes back towards the locker room, but Vader comes out and forces Kane back to ringside. Undertaker dives over the ropes onto both of them and the crowd pops big. Bearer hits Undertaker with a chair to no effect. He takes the chair and hits Kane with it instead, twice. Now he turns his attention to Paul Bearer, and chases him back to the stage where Jeff Jarrett performed earlier this evening with Sawyer Brown. In a goofily memorable moment, Undertaker smashes the bass drum over Bearer’s head, and he’s busted open. He then walks back to the ring and kicks Kane backwards into the fire and wins the match at 16:01. The structure of the rules resulted in a lot of “dead time,” so to speak, as it was hard to build drama to a finish when the choke slam had no chance of actually ending the match. It’s memorable because it’s the first and had a couple of cool spots, so at least it’s more entertaining than their WrestleMania XIV match.
MATCH #2: Last Man Standing Match – Kane vs. Shane McMahon, Unforgiven, 9.21.03
This feud started because Kane Tombstoned Shane’s mommy. Jerry Lawler trying to save her was a nice touch. Shane sneak attacks Kane with a chair as he’s making his way to the ring. He clobbers Kane with it a couple of times and gets an early knockdown. Kane sits up at four and eats another chair shot to the face. You know, it wouldn’t be a great match, but if someone just kept hitting someone with a chair over and over in a Last Man Standing match that would knock them out eventually. Good for Shane. The fight goes to the floor and Shane actually continues to go on offense. Kane finally just shoves him aside but Shane comes right back and leaps off the guardrail. Unfortunately for him, Kane catches him and sort of powerslams him down to the floor. Kane then hits Shane with the ring steps. They go back to the ring and Kane accidentally boots the referee, not that it matters. Kane brings the steel steps into the ring, and Shane is able to reverse the momentum and bulldog Kane onto them, and follows up by baseball sliding the steps right into Kane. Shane continues to use the steps, seeing them up against Kane in the corner and hitting the coast-to-coast dropkick, but there’s no referee to count. Kane lies motionless for a while, so Shane crawls over towards him, and Kane pushes the steps into his head. Now the referee gets back in and starts counting both men. They get up and Kane tosses Shane to the floor. They fight up by the entrance and Kane whips Shane into a piece of the set. He keeps throwing Shane around, and actually dumps the Spanish Announce Table off its platform right onto Shane. Or so he thinks, as Shane attacks him from out of nowhere and shellacs him with a piece of metal. He throws the boom mic into his face, breaking the lens. Kane gets up at nine so Shane tries choking him with some electrical cords. They fight up to the platform and Shane hits a low blow and a DDT. Shane climbs up the scaffolding as JR and King read him his Last Rites. He tries a senton bomb but Kane moves out of the way and that sounded pretty nasty. Kane gets up but Shane sure isn’t going to, so it’s over at 19:54. That was definitely too long and pretty dull in spots, but Shane did some cool stuff and Kane sold for him appropriately.
MATCH #3: Till Death Do Us Part Match – Kane vs. Matt Hardy, SummerSlam, 8.15.04
Lita gets her own entrance. Hardy attacks right away as Kane covers up. He pinned Kane in a no-DQ match at Vengeance so he’s confident. He controls the early going and hits a modified Side Effect for two. He hits a Tornado DDT and Kane lands awkwardly. That also gets two. Hardy stays in control, even hitting a plancha and then a Twist of Fate on the floor. The referee starts the count and Kane makes it back in at nine. Lita gives Matt the ring bell, and then distracts the referee. Hardy whacks Kane in the face with it, but Kane gets his foot on the rope at two. He jumps off the ropes and almost gets Choke Slammed, but he avoids it and tries the Twist of Fate. Kane pushes him off and hits a big boot to the face. He goes up top presumably for the clothesline, but Hardy stops him. He tries a DDT, but Kane blocks that and hits a huge Choke Slam off the top rope to get the pin at 6:08. Hardy actually got almost ALL of the offense in this match, and Kane hit two moves and scored the pin. Now he gets to marry Lita! The match wasn’t unwatchable (being short helped), but it seemed much more suited to TV.
MATCH #4: No DQ Match – Kane vs. Shawn Michaels, Unforgiven, 9.12.04
I love Shawn Michaels and all, but Lita needing him to fight her battles for her makes Matt Hardy look like an even bigger chump. Michaels attacks right away and beats Kane through the ropes and to the floor. He follows Kane out and stays in control until they get back in the ring. Kane slugs Michaels around a bit, and then gets clotheslined to the floor. He goes to argue with Lita, giving Michaels the opportunity to hit a plancha to the floor. Then just to be a scumbag, Kane uses his pregnant wife as a shield, and then resumes tossing Michaels around, he even uses Michaels to break the Spanish Announce Table. They go back to the ring and Kane continues his slow, plodding assault. Michaels eventually makes the comeback and hits the flying forearm, and both men are down. He tries to fire up but Kane reverses an Irish whip and goes flying to the floor. Michaels is busted open now. Kane tries to hit him with a chair but Michaels avoids it and they go back to the floor. Lita distracts her husband, and when he goes for a big boot Michaels moves and he hits the ring post. Michaels then smashes his head against the ring post. They head back to the ring and Michaels is on offense now. He hits the Savage Elbow and fires up. He tunes up the band but Kane hits a big boot instead. That only gets two. He goes up and hits the flying clothesline, and then motions for the Choke Slam. Michaels counters that with a blatant low blow. He grabs a steel chair and levels Kane with it. Both men are down, and Kane is the first one to get up. He goes for the chair but Lita grabs it before he can. That gives Michaels the chance to get up and try Sweet Chin Music. Kane blocks it and tries the Choke Slam, but Michaels reveres that to finally hit Sweet Chin Music to get the pin at 18:04. Michaels is an expert at making opponents look good, and he managed to do that here, even if the match was not all that memorable.
MATCH #5: Kane vs. Edge, Vengeance, 6.26.05
Kane is the aggressor early on, as he delivers a series of mounted punches in the corner. The crowd apparently can’t count past 10. Either that or they choose not to. It’s all Kane for the first several minutes as the crowd chants “We Want Matt!” Kane slugs Edge down to the floor and follows him out and continues the beating. Lita helps Edge avoid getting slammed into the ring post and pushes Kane into it instead, and then hits a Spear. He gets back in the ring and lands a baseball slide, and then goes to work on the Big Red Machine. Kane makes a brief comeback but Edge cuts him off with the Edge-O-Matic, but Kane no-sells it. Edge goes up to the second rope and jumps right into a punch to the throat. Kane hits Snake Eyes and a big clothesline for two. Edge almost comes back but Kane stops him with a side suplex. Kane tries the top-rope clothesline but Edge dropkicks him out of the air. Edge tries a Spear but Kane hits a big boot and motions for the Choke Slam. Snitsky runs out to distract Kane but gets booted in the face. Kane then grabs the Choke Slam again and Lita comes in the ring with a steel chair. She tries using her boobs to avoid a beating, but Kane is not in the mood. He chokes her down and then sets her up for a Pillmanizer on the neck. The referee tries to help her, giving Snitsky a chance to sneak in and hit a big boot on Kane. Edge covers but only gets two. Lita distracts the referee again and Snitsky tries to interfere but Kane takes him out. He also hits the Choke Slam on Edge, pinning him at 11:13. These two never had good matches together, and this one was ridiculously overbooked, and all for Kane?