INDUCTION: The Stephanie vs. Vince I-Quit Match – And Folks Thought Trish Barking Was Bad???

61 Submitted by on Thu, 03 March 2016, 20:00


WWE, 2003

As long as I live, I will never understand why, during Linda McMahon’s attempted political runs, the media and those opposing her repeatedly aired those tired old “Vince makes Trish Stratus bark like a dog” clips. Aside from being baffled as how, precisely, a skit from the world of pro wrestling had anything at all to do with real life, I have but one question:

Seriously? That’s the best you guys could come up with?

I’m not one to take “journalists” (likely since my degree is in broadcast journalism) or politicians (since I don’t care about them at all) to task, but that’s just lazy. A cursory glance through the WWE archives will net you things a gazillion times worse than that. Heck, I’ll even help you out and present you with something that will truly make you uneasy, that being this match from the 2003 No Mercy pay-per-view we’re going to be talking about today.

Billed as the “First Ever Father-Daughter I Quit Match”, it features your favorite WWE plot device, the Feudin’ McMahons. Show of hands – who’d have thought that thirteen years (!!!!) later, we’d be getting the same schtick going into WrestleMania.

I’m glad to see all of you have your hands hoisted high in the air.

To be fair, prior to working on this article, I hadn’t seen this match in years. In fact, it’s quite possible that I’d NEVER seen it before. Before we had the Network, I was pretty Ebenezer-esque in my PPV purchases. But a kind Facebook friend named Chad Adams suggested this be inducted, and thus I threw myself headfirst into this train wreck.

Thanks a lot, Chuck!


Interestingly enough (or not), on the Network splash page of No Mercy 2003, they don’t even mention this match. They do, however, mention a BIKER CHAIN match. That sounds completely idiotic. Still, considering who was involved, it was probably pretty good.


Unless, of course, it featured Biker Taker bebopping around like a fool as he was want to do during this era.


Anyway, as soon as we get past the warning screen, sure enough, we get tons and tons of photos of Vince and Stephers, complete with complete creepy voice overs by the pair of them as a little girl says “I love you daddy” in the background. I know that sounds laughable, but trust me, this clip will give you “Can’t sleep, clown will eat me” nightmares.

Oh, and that warning I mentioned earlier?


Yeah, this isn’t helping matters.

Before we get to the match itself, let’s view this recap of just how we got here.


Let’s see, A-Train (the former Prince Albert (not in a can) and future Tensai (also likely not in a can)) beat Steph up…


…and then Brock Lesnar (yes, THAT Brock Lesnar) choking her out as Vince stood around and cheered on.

Only two words two describe this: creepy and gross.


Heck, by the time we got Steph tearfully giving her side of the story, it was almost welcomed. Think about that – I was looking forward to a Stephanie McMahon promo. That’s what this storyline did to me.

In fact, I won’t even mock her wacky makeup and bizarre hair, nor will I note that after watching last week’s Raw I believe she may have stolen someone else’s nose since the time this show happened. And someone else will have to tell you that she looks like the love child of Dolph Lundgren and Marcy D’Arcy, as it won’t be me.

Nope, I won’t do any of that.


Wait, I just did? My bad.

Let’s go to the ring!


Steph comes out to the ring with Linda, who is wearing what is arguably the worst outfit since the heyday of Bastion Booger (read about him in the archives!).


I mean, seriously, this is a company completely obsessed with looks, with image, and they trot Linda out wearing THIS ensemble. For Pete’s sake, where was Sandra the Seamstress(or even Needles the Tailor) to help this poor woman out?


Vince shows up with Sable in tow, and he is absolutely positively ginormously Lou Ferigno-esque jacked to the gills.

Don’t know about you, but I know when I see this…


…all I can think is “the physique of this 57-year old man proves this company’s testing policies are completely on the up and up.”

So the match starts, and Linda immediately begs Vince to end the insanity. Steph, being the gutsy babyface that she was born to be (yeah right), tells mom she’s got this and shepherds her out of the ring. This naturally allows Vince to sneak up from behind and smack Steph right in the back of the head.


With Vince taking the early edge, he then…wait, did you folks ever notice that Vince always likes to wear black jeans when he’s in a fight? I personally blame Vince McMahon for a lot of things, but now none top the fact that I have this stupid Michael Penn song stuck in my head.

Maybe he is, in fact, just looking for someone to dance with.


Steph fights back by jumping onto her pop’s back and riding him around the ring like the world’s least bouncy pogo stick, all the while screeching in the most non-human manner possible.

I’ve legit heard wounded animals at the zoo make less horrifying sounds.


Quickly, Vince tires of Steph’s antics and traps his daughter in a corner.

Now that’s a wrestling motif I’ve always found completely absurd – how can someone be trapped in a corner? There are wide open ropes, just step through them numbskull!

Please do not ask why I accept someone being whipped into the ropes always running right back at their adversary as completely logical while this offends me.


After successfully trapping his prey, Vince reaches way back into his “Best of Fabulous Moolah vs. Velvet McIntyre” playbook and grabs his daughter by the hair and tosses her across the ring. I seriously don’t think I’ve ever seen a man do that in a wrestling ring before.

Really hope I never do again, because that looks dumb.


Some good ol’ fashioned rope choking comes next, so as to position Sable to slap Steph right across the chops. This takes approximately 45 seconds, as Sable looks confused as to if she should be doing this right in front of referee Nick Patrick, who fails to take the bait and look the other direction. Who cares, though, as it leads to…


…a Linda McMahon vs. Sable foot race!

I kinda want to watch this GIF on a loop all weekend as Linda’s wacky theme song plays in the background.


Vince slaps on a half Boston crab, the worst of which you will ever see. You know, for a guy who was pretty much the definition of pro wrestling for as long as this guy has been following it, Vince never seemed to have a clue how to apply even the most basic of maneuvers.


From one horrible looking move to another we go, including whatever on earth this is supposed to be. I am honestly unsure if Vince is trying to choke out Steph or maybe thinking about giving her a big, wet, nasty kiss. As he reportedly wanted to do an incest storyline with Stephanie at one point, don’t be surprised if he has the latter thought rolling through his noggin.

Meanwhile on the outside, we get another Linda-Sable ‘cat fight’.


If you ever wanted to know where Shane learned to throw a punch, I present this image as evidence that it was from his mom.


Steph attempts to fell her father with a low blow, but c’mon, this is Vince McMahon we’re talking about! So she instead gives him a shot to the nads with a LEAD PIPE, which Vince reluctantly sells. Not enough to, you know, end this match, though. Instead, Steph keeps pounding on Vince with the pipe as Michael Cole screams at the top of his lungs, “HIT HIM IN THE DAMN HEAD!!!”

So she beats on him and beats on him and beats on him, but it’s never enough to put Vince away.


Eventually Vince gets the pipe and starts waylaying on Steph as Cole talks about how unfair this is, noting that Vince “outweighs her by 200 pounds!!!” Ummm, what? I’m no mathmagician, but by my calculations that means that Vince either weighs 365 pounds or Steph weighs 65 pounds.

Pretty sure neither of those are true.

svv20The disaster of an encounter finally ends as Vince jams the pipe against his kid’s throat and Linda very literally throws in the towel. But the fun’s not over yet, as Vince grabs Linda…


…and faceplants her into the mat as well. As if that weren’t charming enough, we get the following dialogue:

Michael Cole: “Thirty-seven years of marriage, that’s probably the first time Mr. McMahon has laid a hand on his wife.”

Tazz: “Well, as far as we know, Cole.”



Between this match and the Raw a couple weeks ago where Shane noted that he remembered the beatings Vince gave him when he was younger, I am guessing that stuff with Trish bow-wowing are probably going back into the mothballs.




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61 Responses to "INDUCTION: The Stephanie vs. Vince I-Quit Match – And Folks Thought Trish Barking Was Bad???"
  1. Mortuary Matt aka Headlessvhseyes says:

    Watching that clip on a loop with that damned music playing is the most addicting thing since crack.

  2. Shockwave says:

    This was about the time in the early 00’s that I stopped watching. This crap and Katie Vick were just the straw that broke the camels back.

  3. Erich says:

    Y’know, I think I’d rather see another dozen Claire Lynch storylines than see this one replayed ever again.

  4. Autrach Sejanoz says:

    Honestly, Vince McMahon’s kayfabe behavior in general circa 2003 should be inducted. He just came across as Satan in human form (that image of him slowly rising above the ring apron ‘wearing the crimson mask’ at Wrestlemania XIX didn’t help), and he got away with it. Yes, he got a thrashing in that Buried Alive match with The Undertaker at Survivor Series, but he still won (thanks to Kane), vanished off TV for months, and when he finally showed up again, he was suddenly a babyface again, with zero explanation.

  5. Sartr says:

    I never really thought about it, but it’s kind of weird that all the McMahons have their own unique theme songs, but Vince gave his wife the old WWF insterstitial background music from the 1980’s.

  6. Adam says:

    Ah, the old Wrestlemania theme… sure didn’t age well.

  7. Hulk6785 says:

    Man, 2003 was a rough year.

  8. Vealchop says: I bet that URL’s not taken.

  9. #OPC says:

    I remember reading a review of this PPV somewhere online. It said what made this match worse was that Steph was getting severely beaten but wouldn’t quit, yet A-Train submitted rather easily earlier on in the night. RD must be on to something with Vince not knowing how to actually wrestle.

  10. Mike says:

    This inspires a bit of a debate. Would you rather WWE from 2003 or current WWE?

    • "The Big Cheese" Paul Kraft says:

      Can’t I just watch re-runs of Green Acres instead?

    • the14thListener says:

      Horrible options! If “turn-off TV” or ” Green Acres” aren’t options, I would go with 2003, because I’ve managed to forget it and it would be new.

    • Si says:

      2003 was Heyman-booked Smackdown Six era, but also the start of Reign Of Terra and this kind of story. 2016 has top class workers, but all booked to fail. Difficult.

  11. Rodolfo Rodríguez (That Lucha Guy) says:

    An incest storyline? At this point Vince McMahon can’t surprise me. It’s amazing how he manages to convince his whole family to go ahead with the angles he comes up with, I mean, how do you even start that conversation? “Hey Steph honey, what would you think about setting up a match for WrestleMania by telling the WWE Universe you’re banging your dadda?”

    • Krendall says:

      Vince tried to do an incest storyline a couple times, I believe both himself and Steph and then Shane and Steph, Both times everyone who wasn’t Vince McMahon refused, which I guess shows where the line is when it comes to doing crazy shit for the family.

  12. Time Lord Soundwave says:

    Wasn’t this the feud with the promo where Steph revealed Vince used to pimp her out to his business associates when she was 17?

    Or am I just having a psychotic episode?

  13. Sean Bateman says:

    Still better than Linda’s sell on the Stunner from Stone COld, who finally stunned for the cycle (which is a hitting a single, double, triple and home run in the same game)

  14. John C says:

    Cole is the tool of all tools. How would that line ever be delivered without realizing very quickly how disturbing it really is.
    “You mean most relationships aren’t built around someone being physically abused at some point? Vintage relationships. Time for me to say that damn something or other now like the script tells me too.”

  15. Raging_Demons says:

    Never saw the match but I knew how stupid this would be in the following:

    Stephanie McMahon was on Jimmy Kimmel trying to promote for the PPV and especially this match. Jimmy made this one joke to literally sum up how awful this match was BEFORE it aired. Kimmel (To Stephanie): “Do I need to call child protection services for you?”

    That in a nutshell was truly how bad this match was.

  16. Anonymous says:

    This wasn’t even “wrestlecrap”, it was just crap.

  17. Gerard says:

    The MacMahon house must have been one screwed up place to grow up in!!! I dunno if the wwe will still be around in 25 30 years from now but I would not be too surprised to see Hunter Shane or Stephanie doing an updated version of this storyline against one of their own kids!!!

  18. OneManChainGang says:

    Thank you for finally inducting this complete waste of a PPV slot. The only thing worse than the match itself was Cole and Tazz’s pathetic commentary afterwards when they talked in somber voices about Stephanie as if she was tragically injured or something during the match.

    • James says:

      Tragically injured…or like she fell from somewhere or died? (yeah they got the selljob from THAT…)

  19. Thomas Moffatt says:

    Nipple H should never be a babyface. Never. Ever. And I mean EVER.

  20. Alexandru says:

    Yeah this was just bizarre why Vince thought this would be entertaining is beyond me, though he also thought the Katie Vick crap would be entertaining so yeah. At least this isn’t as a bad as the rumoured incest angle that was planned for these two *shudders*

    • Thomas Moffatt says:

      They tried it later with Paul and Katie Lea Burchill… Paul Burchill, what went wrong there?

      • Si says:

        The pirate gimmick happened, which was fun but a dead end as it was just to annoy Regal, and then Katie Lea happened, which nobody asked for, and as that didn’t get over he was done.

    • James says:

      It makes me wonder which Vince really rubbed off on which? (between McMahon and Russo of course)

  21. Leatherface says:

    Strange how WWE never got around to make a Vince Vs Linda Mcmahon, which could have been the first ever husband vs wife match or Shane Vs Steph Mcmahon , which could have been the first ever brother vs sister wrestling match.

    • Thomas Moffatt says:

      Nipple and Triple H feuded the year before if I recall and Trips took on Nips and Jericho in a handicap match which included Wrestlecrap inductee Lucy the Dog.

  22. C. Peter Roberts says:

    Agree to disagree on Michael Penn, but YE GODS this was a terrible angle and match.

  23. ballroombasher says:

    This was horrendous, but the biggest injustice happens just a mere one week later, HHH & Steph get married!

    • Slapps says:

      I thought this was the match before the wedding but wasnt sure. The McMahons talk about this on Vince’s DVD, how Linda was furious it was taking place in case Nips wound up in a cast for the wedding.

      Considering how bad that boston crab looked, I dont think this was ever a serious issue.

  24. Justin says:

    So many things wrong with this match, angle, and everything surrounding it. I’m still at a loss which demographic they were trying to appeal to. Abusive fathers? Girls with daddy issues?

    And I demand Vince piss in a cup, after which CNN must videotape the urinalysis. There is zero chance that man is clean.

  25. C Boz says:

    Marcy D’Arcy reference? Winner of an induction. But I feel all the dirtier having actually read it. Those GIFs will haunt me for some time.

  26. Mick says:

    Vince McMahon in 2003 was a sight to be behold. I think his confidence and narcissism hit its all time peak when Sable came back to be his sex toy.

  27. Robert Igoe says:

    All Linda had to do was say “It’s not Jesse this time!”

  28. DarthPitch says:

    That GIF of Paul E. sticking his tongue out works perfectly with this induction. “Good GOD, I could crap a better storyline than this! BLEAH!”

  29. Bryan says:

    “Best of Fabulous Moolah vs. Velvet McIntyre” playbook. Been laughing at this for 10 minutes now. Hilarious induction. I’m a little scared to actually watch this match, I have to admit.

  30. Adam Clark says:

    Those Linda McMahon .gifs are actually sped up 300%

  31. E-Squared says:

    I watched No Mercy 2003 months ago, and it was the DVD that I have of it. Man, that opening video for the show was just unsettling. However, I can’t help but think that the gear that Stephanie wore for this match looks like a disco suit.

  32. Zero says:

    Almost everything in this ppv outside Angle/Cena was garbage. The Biker Chain match was a steaming pile: Brock Lesnar all of a sudden needed help from the Full Blooded Italians and Vince McMahon to take down the same Biker Taker thar he destroyed 12 months ago in Hell in a Cell.

    Even then, that was still better than everything about the Vince/Steph feud. Once again Shane comes out looking the best and he was getting his grapefruits shocked by Kane and diving off Titantrons while this feud was happening.

    • Deepthroat Ghoul says:

      Well, what about Billy Kidman vs. Shannon Moore from the pre-show:


  33. MikeW says:

    Fun how they talk on this on the McMahon DVD with Stephanie saying she had no idea how she got talked into it and how this was just a week before her wedding to Hunter and LInda warning Vince “if she has a single mark on her for the ceremony, so help me…”

  34. James says:

    Steph hasn’t been pounded like that since 1994 and Macho….oh never mind!

  35. Tyler says:

    No myth is a fine song!

  36. Mister Forth says:

    Man 2003 was the strangest year when talking about Vince booking himself.

  37. Obi1Jabroni says:

    Linda was dressed in my 70 year old mother’s styles. Too bad the match wasn’t 13 years later; Linda could have related more to the audiences by wearing the new Kevin Owens sweatpants I was just reading about…

  38. Anthony says:

    This match(and the angles that led to it) is one of the reasons I hated the wwe product in 2003. By 2003 the McMahons being all over tv was beyond tiresome and their storylines were horrendous. I hated the kane vs Shane stuff too. I think RD should induct the whole year of wwe in 2003.

  39. Mahmood says:

    This girl is like Stefanie McMahon

  40. Deepthroat Ghoul says:

    In another spot of armchair booking, I would’ve merged the Cena/Angle and Vince/Stephanie matches into a mixed tag match pitting Angle and Steph (with Linda) against Cena and Sable (with Vince), and the heels get the win when Sable pins Steph after hitting her with Cena’s chain.

    Also, I’d have Broken Matt beat Tenacious Z (that’s what Zach Gowen was called in TNA).

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