Hell In A Cell Matches Reviewed Using The Nicolas Cage System

Some good, some bad but all involving a Cage.

Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels (In Your House: Badd Blood)

Well-booked, amazing match and the debut of Kane. Pretty much perfect.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Leaving Las Vegas.

Steve Austin & Undertaker vs. Mankind & Kane (Raw June 15th 1998)

Just an angle, but features the debut of Mankind’s shirt and tie look. And a brutal chair-shot.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Honeymoon in Vegas.

Undertaker vs. Mankind (King Of The Ring 1998)

What more needs to be said? Two wrecked guys show up to a match they were just hoping would not be terrible.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Face/Off.

Mankind vs. Kane (Raw August 24 1998)

Like the tag match, more angle than match. And ends via DQ. Because Russo.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Gone in Sixty Seconds.

Big Boss Man vs. Undertaker (Wrestlemania XV)

Notable only for Boss Man’s hand-cuffs accidentally breaking and Michael Cole talking about how the Cell is deadly because you can get your fingers caught in it. Oh and Boss Man dying afterwards.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be The Wicker Man.

Big Boss Man vs. Al Snow (Unforgiven 1999)

The Kennel From Hell, featuring Al Snow and dog-fucking. Absolutely hilarious, especially when riffed on. Or high.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Deadfall.

Triple H vs. Cactus Jack (No Way Out 2000)

The match that caused Powerslam Magazine to refer to Mick Foley as a dirty liar every single issue. Title vs. Career, Foley dying once again and Triple H confirming that he was The Man in 2000.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Lord of War.

Kurt Angle vs. HHH vs. The Rock vs. Steve Austin vs. Undertaker vs. Rikishi (Armageddon 2000)

Just a big ol’ brawl to tease future PPV main events. Not bad, but it’s just a popcorn fight compared to other HIAC matches with actual storylines and not just ”oh my god this PPV is going to bomb unless we do something drastic, quick put every main eventer in the Cell and drop Rikishi off the Cell into a truck filled with sawdust.”

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Con Air.

Triple H vs. Chris Jericho (Judgement Day 2002)

The first time the Cell was brought out to perform open-heart surgery on a feud. HHH cleanly pins Jericho at Wrestlemania X8, loses to the title to Hogan at Backlash and then thinks ”fuck it, I think I’ll pin Jericho again.” Nearly all the spots are taken from previous HIAC matches except without the heat. Tim White has his career ended thanks to Jericho, match didn’t even headline the B-PPV it was on.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Stolen.

Brock Lesnar vs. Undertaker (No Mercy 2002)

If you ignore the ”Undertaker has an injured hand but he took some ‘medicine’ before the match and he’s OK” sub-plot, this is an old-school bleed-everywhere, beat the shit out of your opponent match. Also Brock won, which was another notch in his belt in his debut year.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Snake Eyes.

Triple H vs. Kevin Nash (Badd Blood 2003)

The only thing funnier than 2003 Nash doing HIAC was 2011 Nash doing ladder matches. In fairness, it’s not as bad as you would expect. They use every shortcut known to Mankind (who was reffing) including a toolbox, screwdriver and wooden crate. But then again when the best thing you can think of to say about a match is ”it’s not as bad as you would expect” it’s not going to be great.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Ghost Rider.

Triple H vs. Shawn Michaels (Bad Blood 2004)

I haven’t seen it but everyone tells me to leave it alone.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be The Weather Man.

Triple H vs. Batista (Vengeance 2005)

Whereas the last two HHHIAC matches were about extending vanity feuds, this match was about getting Batista the fuck over. And the fuck over he got, as HHH tried everything to put away Big Dave but he just shrugged it all off as the crowd gushed. Good cheesy action all the way.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be The Rock.

Undertaker vs. Randy Orton (Armageddon 2005)

Once again Armageddon has fuck-all going for it so we turn to HIAC. In fairness, Orton and Undertaker had feuded for half-a-year on/off. Orton tombstones Undi and Bob Orton nearly gives everyone Hep C. Over the top goodness.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Vampire’s Kiss.

Vince McMahon, Shane McMahon & Big Show vs. HHH & Shawn Michaels (Unforgiven 2006)

Definitely a different type of HIAC match compared to the rest and again HIAC is dusted off to extend a feud that was over-and-done-with at Wrestlemania. And D-X vs. McMahons the most on-sided feud WWE’s ever put out (that didn’t involve Sheamus). Man asses and squashes abound.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Amos & Andrew.

Batista vs. Undertaker (Survivor Series 2007)

”Batista sucks…apart from he’s wrestling Undertaker. Then he’s awesome.” – everyone in 2007. Not the best match of their feud, but it’s two guys with crazy chemistry together as a back-drop to the edgy finish…which resulted in more matches and feuds. HIAC is supposed to be a feud-ender, but if the end result is more good matches then I’m good with it.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans

Undertaker vs. Edge (Summerslam 2008)

Christ, the effects of the last HIAC lead to the next one nine months later? Anyone says negative things about 2007-2008, look at this level of organisation and weep. Anyway, Edge and Undertaker had already head-lined Wrestlemania (noticing a pattern here yet?) and this the final final honest final match so it’s more focused on the crazy spots than the story-telling. Switch your brain off and enjoy.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Werewolf Women of the SS.

Undertaker vs. CM Punk (Hell In A Cell 2009)

And so we go from Hell In A Cell to Another Match For Cash.

First match of the PPV, lasts ten minutes, nearly a squash. The Punk vs. Undertaker feud of 2009 was a complete bomb entertainment wise. Waste of time.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Spirit of Vengeance.

John Cena vs. Randy Orton (Hell In A Cell 2009)

This feud was dragging in 2009. Think about that. Orton does a good impression of a sadist but the match drags and drags and..I don’t know why I’m typing this out. If you want to watch Orton vs. Cena you’re probably not the type of person to wanna read any of this.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Seeking Justice.

D-Generation X vs. Legacy (Hell In A Cell 2009)

The feud was nearly as one-sided as The Spirit Squad one from 2006 and thought it was a waste of time for everybody but even I had to admit this match was good in terms of story-telling. Whenever D-X would overcome the odds like old heroes it would work, sadly they spent most of the reunited tours pinning everybody alive. But yeah. Begrudging thumbs up.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be National Treasure.

Randy Orton vs. Sheamus (Hell In A Cell 2010)

The only thing I remember about this was Sheamus giving Orton a back-breaker via his knee whilst on some steel steps and being told this was a good match. If you say so.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Knowing.

Kane vs. Undertaker (Hell In A Cell 2010)


If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Left Behind.

Mark Henry vs. Randy Orton (Hell In A Cell 2011)

Henry’s push was so well done and he’d won the title a few weeks before this…so it was all downhill from there. Not as bad as I remembered, at the time I was in full-on I LOVE MARK HENRY mode so every time he sold for Orton I went ”noooooo.” Decent.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be 8mm.

Alberto Del Rio vs. John Cena vs. CM Punk (Hell In A Cell 2011)

Everyone beats the hell out of each other and it’s always good to see a heel genuinely outsmart Cena and get away with it…and then ADR wins the title. Which made no sense (like the rest of the writing around this time). So yeah. A good if confusing match.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Wild At Heart.

Undertaker vs. Triple H (WrestleMania XXVIII)

Go a lot of criticism from people at the time but they can go to hell. Old men being manly for one last time (ha) to close the door (ha) on their careers (ha).

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Kick-Ass.

CM Punk vs. Ryback (Hell In A Cell 2012)

Oh the shit-storm this match caused at the time. Well, on Twitter. Everyone went ”OH IT’S TOO SOON FOR RYBACK” and ”HOW ARE THEY GONNA GET OUT OF THIS”. After the finish, grown men with jobs went ”FUCKING WWE” and there was much hilarity. Anyway, Punk works to Ryback’s positives and makes him look like the second coming, with the crowd behind The Big Guy the entire time.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Raising Arizona

CM Punk vs. Ryback & Paul Heyman (Hell In A Cell 2013)

Ah that time when Heyman and Punk were feuding…but they couldn’t have Heyman actually wrestle so Ryback was just the ”also starring” to the main feature. I wanted to like it, but Ryback had fallen so much since last year so no-one thought he was going to win. And he didn’t. Self-fulfilling prophecy.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Season of the Witch.

Randy Orton vs. Daniel Bryan (Hell In A Cell 2013)

Every Orton and Bryan match was at least great, even if their PPV matches were mired by something (fast-counts, Big Show) so this is a contender for best HIAC match at the HIAC PPV. White-hot crowd, suspense and turns. And it lead to Wrestlemania XXX.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Red Rock West.

John Cena vs. Randy Orton (Hell In A Cell 2014)

YES, THEY MADE ANOTHER ONE. In fairness, when Orton hit the RKO Outta Nowhere (and it actually was Outta Nowhere this time) and the match had ended mid-Cena comeback sequence then I’d have loved this match. Wasn’t meant to be though.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be National Treasure: Book of Secrets.

Dean Ambrose vs. Seth Rollins (Hell In A Cell 2014)

So after years of having matches that just happen to take place in The Cell, we finally get a full-on Hell In A Cell match with hate and violence and piss. For a while this was the end of the Ambrose/Rollins feud (Well, the end of Part VI anyway) and just when you think Ambrose is going to get his revenge…hologram Wyatt shows up and steals it from him. If this had resulted in a coherent Wyatt/Ambrose feud then fair enough, but after ambulances, exploding TVs and Sister Abigails Outta Nowhere it only made Bray Wyatt and inanimate objects look credible.

If It Was A Nicolas Cage Film It Would Be Joe.

  • Hitmonchan

    So KOTR ’98 is quintessential cheesy 90’s with hammy lines, boat chases, gun-fu and Mankind is Travolta?

    Not saying that Face/Off is bad (it’s personally my favorite Cage movie followed by Con Air.)

    • MaffewOfBotchamania

      Fuck yeah it is.

      Over the top, violence and (yes) hammy lines.


      • Lie Maid

        Not enough white doves though for my liking.

      • Catherine Bouey


  • Juan Dinner

    My problem with Hell in a cell (and TLC for that matter) is that now it is a pointless type of a match. It used to be something special that happened when rivalries were hot and now, since we are in the shitty part of the year and WWE usually has fuck-all going it has been turned in, like you said, “Another match for cash”. What was supposed to be the most brutal match in WWE now it’s something that happens in October/November. At least the Elimination Chamber has a gimmick or a “reason” to happen on February (last chance to be in Wrestlemania)

    P.S: Do another “Network Guide” please

    • MaffewOfBotchamania

      I don’t think there’s a fan alive who disagrees with you. (about HIAC, not Network Guide).

      What year would you want for the Network Guide?

      • Juan Dinner

        Since the topic is somewhat hot, why not 2007 or 2008? Or maybe you could add some continuity and do 2006. I’d like any of these 3 years since I started watching WWE around this time. Thanks btw.

      • Joey

        If I could raise a suggestion, all of Taker’s feuds from his 2004 return to the 2012 End of an Era match.

    • Lie Maid

      Unfortunately, WWE booked itself into a creative corner by using these stipulations so often that they no longer seemed as important as they should be. So they tried to make them more exclusive by holding them once a year on their own pay-per-view, which obviously removes the feeling of spontaneity entirely. Making things more stupid is that they still have HIAC and TLC matches on other shows occasionally anyway.

      TNA set the tone with Lockdown (and still having other cage matches on other shows) but at least they didn’t call the event ‘Cage’ and they had different match-types within the cage itself.

      • Catherine Bouey

        As I recall didn’t some genius in TNA get the idea to have a “Prince Of Darkness” match….inside of cage between Chris Harris and James Storm.

        Which is pretty much far worse than anything WWE has done with Hell In The Cell matches over the last 10 years.

  • Jason Gumshoe McDermott

    In my opinion Con Air is the king of Cage movies, I’ve never seen the 6 man hell in a cell but it must be amazing. I assume that The rock decides to prove that god does exist by punching triple H, kurt plays the part of a creepy paedo murderer that you want to cheer for and Rikishi puts the bunny back in the box. He put the bunny back in the box for da rock.

    • MaffewOfBotchamania

      ”His name is Cyrus The Virus…and he’s killed more people than cancer.”

      One of the top 10 films for action film lines.

  • Codster9

    Ah yes. That pointless backbreaker on the steel steps.

    • cooljayhu

      Which Botchamania episode is this from because I need to see it.

      • Codster9


    • Lie Maid

      Give Cole some credit here, he tried to explain it by saying that it gave Sheamus a sturdier foot support and thus the impact on the back would be harder. Problem? The ring itself is made of wood and steel and WWE doesn’t hide this fact. In fact, it’s pointless even using the steps to hit moves on because the mat is pretty much the same albeit with an incredibly thin canvas layer on top. Steps should only be used for things that aren’t possible in the ring (throwing them at people, sticking them in the ropes etc). Not really Sheamus’s fault in that respect, but this move was still stupid.

      • Codster9

        “Michael Cole talking about how the Cell is deadly because you can get your fingers caught in it.” Michael Cole could make reading a book sound dangerous.

        • GreatBigMouth

          Have you ever had a papercut? Those things are NASTY.

          • Codster9

            Michael Cole’s best commentary during that match:

    • Catherine Bouey

      Good, Good.

  • Butch

    I noticed you put Snake Eyes twice, is that to mean it’s worthy of being referenced twice due to the quality of the HIAC match, or because you couldn’t think of another Cage movie to use?

    • Terry Lewis

      Snake Eyes pisses brilliance and has sex for breakfast. Deserves going twice.

    • MaffewOfBotchamania

      ”That’s a typo” – Homer Simpson.

      Terry Lewis is right though, Snake Eyes pisses brilliance.

      Added Red Rock West instead.

  • MPT

    Because OF Russo.

    Why “No” to Undertaker VS Kane?

    • MaffewOfBotchamania

      ”Why “No” to Undertaker VS Kane?”

      FFS mate.

      • MPT

        “FFS mate”

        Undertaker VS Kane promises a great story.

        • Catherine Bouey

          If I recall correctly this match was done around the infamous someone put Undertaker into a vegetative state storyline that or Maffew wasn’t interested in seeing another Taker-Kane match for 25th time.

  • Cerith Burrows

    Personally my favourite HIAC match is Taker/Lesnar, told a fantasitc story, built Lesnar up to be a beast (so to speak), Undertaker threw everything at him but Brock was just too good for him, not to mention all that blood, plus neither guy escaped the cell, which was always the actual point of it.

    • MaffewOfBotchamania

      Yes…but which Nicolas Cage film is it?

      • Christ J

        Matchstick Men?

        • MaffewOfBotchamania

          I approve…

  • Zuckerkorn

    This list is invalid without a Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans comparison.

    • Bloodied

      Batista/Undertaker SS 07

      • Zuckerkorn

        Shit, I missed that.

  • sorry i must nitpick

    *If It Were a Nicolas Cage Film

  • reyenir

    Actually enjoyed both NashHHH and HHHHBK matches.

  • Codster9

    Boss Man is a former prison guard that got hung from the Cell high above the ring. Should that Cell match have been “Con Air”?

  • 2D2Will

    Turns out there was an untelevised Hell in a Cell match. Which Nicholas Cage film would that one be? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BNHirWbBttA

    • Catherine Bouey

      The Death and Rebirth of Superman movie Cage was attached to that never happened?

      • 2D2Will

        I like this answer!

  • Codster9

    Hell in a Cell: Then and Now

    • not

      i dont get it

      • Codster9

        Hell in a Cell used to be about brutal matches and finality. Now, it’s just a yearly PPV used to promote Breast Cancer Awareness.


    Just Imagine….

    Undertaker/Shockmaster instead of Foley in that iconic match

    • Justin Watry

      Why though?

      • TISHE

        If he hadn’t botched his debut and got a better costume through time. I wonder if they have an action figure

  • AwelCruiz

    So any predictions for what Cage movies this Sunday’s HIAC matches will be?

    • Codster9

      The Sorcerer’s Apprentice

  • Benjamin Raven

    Watch HBK/HHH HIAC if you like watching HBK sell death for 40 of the 47 minutes of that match

  • CS 22

    Fun column. Just an observation, but Ryback’s predicament at HIAC 2013 is exactly why fans were right to moan about HIAC 2012. It was too soon for him and that loss (how ever it came) hurt his momentum. Not as bad as Cena did later on, but still…

    • MaffewOfBotchamania

      I thought the Cena feud was the stake through the heart as he actually sounded cool as a heel, with the beanie and riding on Ambulances like a cult leader dude.

  • MPT

    Ambrose still came out intact after that Wyatt feud

  • Христо Георгиев
  • Христо Георгиев
  • Христо Георгиев