On Sunday, February 22nd, 2015, WWE presented a match that pitted brother against brother. This match followed what was a whole new direction for Cody Rhodes emerge, who had become (Stardust), & he was facing off with his brother Dustin Rhodes, who was competing under the moniker of (Goldust) that he used in WWE for so many years.
The build for the match saw Stardust wanting to renounce his family and his father Dusty Rhodes, who had to witness this take place. A father should never have to see his children fight, but this was no ordinary circumstance. Stardust would famously proclaim ‘Cody Rhodes is dead and so is my father,’ in retrospect, a rather haunting sentence. It was typical back and forth bickering between the siblings leading up to this match.
Character-Driven vs. Less Emotionally Charged
As the match opens, fans see a much more character-driven Stardust ( Cody ) against a less emotionally charged, more rational Goldust ( Dustin ). It is a real departure for these two. Early on, Goldust is much more focused on Stardust, who is getting distracted and dismayed by the ‘Cody’ chants from those in attendance. Goldust gets the advantage early and attempts the directors cut, but Stardust breaks free and slips under the bottom rope to the floor. He re-enters the ring, but Goldust catches him right away, following up a backbreaker with a clothesline over the top rope.
Stardust again returns to the ring and exchanges punches with his brother. Goldust attempts to set him up for the shattered dreams, but Stardust avoids it. He continues to stomp and kick at Goldust, even taking the fight to him outside the ring and hitting more kicks. He stands amongst the fans gloating. Stardust rolls his opponent into the ring and locks in a body scissors. JBL points out that Cody is at a point now where he only sees himself as his alter ego, and everything else ceases to exist. Goldust is hoisted up and planted on the mat with a face-forward suplex.
Cody (Stardust) & Dustin (Goldust)
Stardust Irish whips him from one corner to the other and then proceeds to cover him, but only for a count of two. Fans continue to chant ‘Cody’ but though somewhat distracted he continues to work on his older sibling. Back to the torso work, he applies a waist lock around the ribs, almost like a reverse bearhug. He then appears to be sizing him up and indeed attempts a crossroads, but it is countered. Goldust rolls up Stardust for the three count, much to the surprise of the younger Rhodes.
After the match, Dusty is shown backstage, smiling at the result. Back in the ring, Stardust appears baffled by it all. Goldust exits the ring still looking at his younger brother, and asks for a handshake, hoping that the loss would shake some sense into Stardust. Stardust taps the outstretched hand of his brother and then slides out of the ring and proceeds to the back.
The match went just over 10 minutes, and there are a number of things that worked really well. The story told between the Rhodes brothers was quite good. A great deal of credit goes to Stardust/Cody for telling a story completely in character. We could see throughout that Stardust was very distinct from Cody. That it was as important to separate himself from the Rhodes name and his brother Goldust ( Dustin ). While it would have been nice to see a longer match they made it work with the time they were given, and it was effective.
In comparison, Goldust was the sympathetic older brother that was always more concerned with trying to straighten out his younger brother than he was with hurting him. It was never his intent to injure his sibling or render him unable to compete physically. It was akin to a sibling slapping around their younger sibling for being disrespectful and trying to smarten them up.