Spain’s WWE SmackDown Report and Results for January 2nd 2014: Should Auld Acquaintance Be Forgot…

Hello all, and welcome to the SmackDown Report. I’m aware that this is late, but I’m also aware that you aren’t my Dad. Dad, if you are reading this, sixteen years is a hell of long time to be out looking for cigarettes. Didn’t even know you smoked.

We kick things off with a recap of Seth Rollins threatening to, at the very least, paralyse a non-employee and actually use the word ‘kill’ in that context. Seriously, Cena should have just pointed out that Seth, Big Show and J and J would absolutely go to jail for several years and seen if that did the trick. Also, we then immediately see that John was quick enough to stop Rollins from actually breaking Edge’s neck anyway, meaning he could have just recited The Jabberwock and made the save without bringing the Authority back. John Cena and Seth Rollins are a match made in stupid-people heaven. Oh, and WWE Creative should be forced to take writing classes.

We kick off the show with the unparalysed Edge and the ‘Can Only Take One Briefcase Shot’ Christian. Michael Cole tells us they’ve actually filed a multi-million dollar lawsuit, which is…honest to God exactly what I’d be doing. They’re running SmackDown tonight, because even though the Authority are back, who cares about SmackDown? Edge says he wishes they could get back at Rollins, which…it sort of seems like they are definitely able to do, being in charge and all. Just put him in a handicap match against Rusev, Swagger and Ryback: see how he likes a broken neck. But apparently neck-breaking isn’t a trigger for Edge, so they’re just going to do this show, but then a limo shows up on the titantron, implying that a cameraman is just hanging out there. Noble and Mercury are in the limo, and that must be some kind of Make-A-Wish thing right there. They then manage to somehow get to the stage in the space of a few seconds, so they can teleport. And they use Seth Rollins’ music, because…probably a Make-A-Wish thing again.

Rather than murder-killing the two shorties who tried to help paralyse one of them on Monday, Edge and Christian mock them. Shit, they’re taking this lawsuit seriously. The stooges read out a prepared statement, which really seems to be the Authority throwing Rollins under the bus, but I’ll take anything which makes Seth a Heyman Guy. And I’m pretty sure that, even if the Authority didn’t know about the attack, then Edge and Christian still get to sue the company, due to the fact that the four guys involved in that incident were all contracted employees. So, those two are still going to be millionaires. Which, I guess, explains their general cheer. Jamie and Joey are apparently there to ensure that E+C don’t suddenly snap and burn down the arena whilst mounting Rollins’ severed head on a spike. But instead of that, they put Cruiserweight Security in a match against Ryback. Except…they don’t, instead putting Ryback in a match against the Big Show. And then Rusev gets put in a match against Roman Reigns: that’s a DQ. Noble says he’s taking notes for their permanent files, and Edge points out that he’s not an employee. Imagine if he’d come back as psycho-Edge rather than Reeks-Of-Awesome Edge. Or if him and Christian came back as the Brood? Shit would be real.

WWE Doesn’t Provide Therapy; It Provides Entertainment

Bray Wyatt shows up, and apparently he’s having an Ambulance Match at some stage with Ambrose, and has gone on record saying that they ‘will not be able to resuscitate’ Ambrose. I’m pretty sure that Bray doesn’t get to be the guy who gives the DNR order, but we’ve sort of already established that the writers of this show do fuck-all research. Bray’s going to fight Rowan in a match which, you know, could have had a little bit of fucking build.

Bray yells for Rowan to lay down, and maybe they’re saving the PPV match for Harper. Rowan refuses to job out, so Wyatt smacks him around, leading to Rowan throwing and booting him. He runs Bray’s head into some turnbuckles pretty violently, and this just screams of some kind of trauma endured whilst Rowan was in the Wyatt Family. He misses a turnbuckle charge, blasting the ring post and falling out to the floor. Wyatt follows him out, hurling Rowan into the steel post.

Wyatt asks Rowan ‘why are you doing this to me?’ which is textbook narcissistic-parent behaviour. He slams Erick’s head into the steel post, which is textbook WWE heel behaviour, and then applies a sleeper in the ring, which is textbook Randy Orton behaviour. Rowan breaks out of it, starting to fire up as he pancakes Wyatt in the corner, then runs right over him. Bray begs off, and when a formerly-abusive parental figure tries to stop you from hurting them, you keep fucking hurting them. Rowan hesitates, and then gets Sister Abigailed, which underlines that lesson entirely.

I’d be intrigued by this match if there was build to it. It was also rushed and mostly devoid of emotion; my hope now is that Harper picks up this fight at some stage; it would be a better match, let’s face it. 2 Stars.

Bray gets on a microphone and says that if he’s willing to do that to someone he claims to be related to, what’s he going to do to Dean Ambrose? Well, probably a little less, considering that Ambrose isn’t a pussy. He says that Dean is going to be lying on a slab, and I’m getting worried that Bray thinks that he has to actually place Ambrose in a serious risk of death in this Ambulance Match or he’ll get arrested for improper use of the emergency services.

Edge and Christian are backstage, and Jamie and Joey stop them from doing a five-second pose, which it turns out was just a distraction so that Edge and Christian can just…sneak away. Yep.

I love how WWE’s Royal Rumble commercial involves the implication that we all hate our jobs and our kids.

HEEL!Adam Rose: About As Successful As FACE!Adam Rose

Well, the stars have finally aligned. And by stars, I mean the under-the-influence members of the WWE. By which I mean the Dust Brothers are teaming up with Adam Rose. They’ll be facing the Usos and R-Truth in this six-man tag match, and Rose is going to kick things off against R-Truth. They duel ‘What’s Up’ chants, and Truth nearly rolls Rose up. Bless him for trying to end this. Truth tags in Jey, who runs the ropes until Stardust low-bridges him. Give it up, guys, you’re not getting the belts again. We get a random promo for John Cena, just in case there is the slightest chance we didn’t know that he was our lord and saviour and really easy to blackmail. When we come back, Jey is in a facelock by Goldust, but punches away at him until the Bizarre One powerslams him. Tag to Stardust, who chokes Jey with his foot. Stardust really does have a creepy, giggly, mentally-impaired serial killer vibe to him. He then proves this by tagging in Adam Rose, who stomps on Jey and chokes him on the ropes. Okay, guy controlling the cameras, we’re all now sufficiently aware that that Rosebud girl has large breasts; back to the match.

Rose hits a back elbow and tags Goldust in. Jey tries to fire up, knocking all three men off the apron or out of the ring! Jey tries to crawl over to either R-Truth or the more-capable one. Jimmy gets the tag and clotheslines the now-legal Rose. Uppercut, Samoan Drop. Goldust tries to block a Samoan Wrecking Ball, but Uso ducks him and hits it anyway. Jimmy catches Goldust’s foot and holds it, allowing Truth to kick Goldust in the face: pragmatic. R-Truth throws himself out of the ring onto Goldust, and then Stardust feints bringing it against Jimmy, but then does his ‘Falling Star’ thing, crying ‘Make A Wish!’ Does that count as advertising? Rose tries to roll up one half of the tag-team champions, and gets Superkicked. Samoan Splash ends it.

Actually pretty decent for a six-man tag match. I mean, I like them, but you need the right combination of dudes. Yeah, I miss the Shield and the Wyatts. 2.5 Stars.

Wow, the Rosebuds actually hit the ring, in an uncharacteristic bid for suicide-via-actual-wrestlers. When is the Bunny going to appear as the Rosebud Messiah, and save them?

Promo for Brock Lesnar, which is actually the closest we’ve ever gotten to having him on SmackDown. Remember when he only used to be on this show? Remember when this show used to be awesome?

Flashback to Harper vs. Jack Swagger, because that was a fucking classic, wasn’t it? Then we see Daniel Bryan telling us that he’s coming back which was, actually, amazing.

You Could Set Your Clocks By Rusev Run-Ins

Here’s Ryback, fresh off his ‘shit you don’t want to know about me’ talk from Monday. And here’s Big Show, here to compete in this contest of who is the WWE trying to protect more in the run-up to their respective PPV matches. The Big Show and Guy lock up, and then Ryback drives Show into a corner and shoulder-thrusts him, before Show clotheslines him right out of the ring. Big Show hoists Ryback up to the apron, and the Big Guy hangs him up on the ropes. Boot to Big Show back in the ring, then a pair of axe-handles from the second rope actually knock Show down! Ryback winds up for the Meathook, but Show ducks out of the ring. Better be careful, Big Show; Reigns is faster than Ryback.

We get a promo telling us not to try giving a lecture about the challenges we’ve faced to get where we are today at home, and when we come back Big Show is dominating. Ryback gets some shots in, but Show levels him with a clothesline. The Giant wraps Ryback’s leg around the ring post, and Ryback probably shouldn’t have pinpointed his ‘injure me here’ area on Monday, the dumb asshole. Big Show continues to attack the leg again in the ring, killing any chance of Ryback building momentum. Bodyslam to Ryback. Michael says that Big Show’s got a new attitude, which is basically like half of his old attitudes. Big Show wrenches Ryback’s body back by the legs, making the Big Guy scream in pain before he reaches the ropes. Big Show then bodyslams Ryback near the ropes, making sure that Ryback’s leg hits the top rope.

Big Show charges at Ryback, who manages to low-bridge him. Ref starts the count, and Big Show beats it at seven. Ryback immediately clotheslines Show a few times before hitting the Thesz Press. He hits a splash from the second rope, but Show goozled him for a chokeslam. Ryback counters, hitting a spinebuster…

…and THE FLAG WAS SUMMONED. Rusev and Lana, otherwise known as the Protection Squad, walk down the aisle to distract Ryback, who is apparently easily-distractable. Show hits the KO Punch to knock him off the apron, and Ryback takes the count-out loss.

Jesus, WWE, you are allowed to have wrestlers get clean wins over other wrestlers. Even if they are going to be in a PPV this month. Match was good enough, really, which surprised me. 2.5 Stars.

Post-match, Rusev tries to apply the Accolade, but Ryback avoids it and clotheslines Rusev out of the ring. Suck it, Soviet.

Backstage, J and J find Edge and demand to know where Christian is. Edge tells them that he’s in the bathroom, and Noble goes in. There’s a woman’s scream, and Noble comes out, white with the fear that he’s about to get ‘sexual harassment’ added to his file.

Really Hope Cesaro And Natalya Run Off Together

Cesaro, Tyson Kidd and Tyson Kidd’s emotionally-abused wife (if Tyson Kidd tried to physically abuse Nat Neidhart, I’m pretty sure she would break his back) approach the ring. We see a clip showing that Tyson and Cesaro are stoked that the Authority is back, because apparently they believe that means they’ll get the recognition that they deserve. Excuse me for just one minute.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!

Tyson Kidd also stole a high-five from his wife, like the worthless dick that he is. They’re up against the Matadors, whose midget mascot is more popular than they are, and I’m pretty sure everyone hates the mascot. Headlock to Tyson, with Fernando getting the tag. They dodge Kidd until Fernando hits the neckbreaker, then runs into a back elbow. He dropkicks Kidd to the floor, but when he tries to dive out onto him, Cesaro slams an uppercut right into his face. Kidd well in control, and he tags in Cesaro for a double backdrop.

Sleeper hold applied by Cesaro, and Fernando quickly gets out of it, but Cesaro catches him in the swing before Kidd hits a dropkick into his mask. Uppercuts to Fernando before Kidd gets tagged in; Fernando avoids another double backdrop situation, sending the boys out of the ring before catching an airborne Kidd with a dropkick; tag to Diego! Diego comes in hard and fast, knocking Cesaro around before doing his handstand in the corner and headscissoring the Swiss Superman. Cesaro reverses an Irish whip, and blocks the hurricanrana; double powerbomb/neckbreaker by Kidd and Cesaro for the win!

Okay, I’m sold on the team, if only because a match between them and the Usos will be fucking glorious. Los Matadores are two people who could be better employed in any other role. And not just wrestling; I mean like working in a library or sweetshop. 2 Stars.

Well, Curtis Axel isn’t dead, and he’s facing Dean Ambrose, who Bray Wyatt seems to think he has to kill. Ambrose flings himself onto Axel and tries to murder him before the bell even rings. They brawl on the outside, and Curtis gains the upper hand for a moment before Ambrose levels him with a clothesline. Dirty Deeds stops us from seeing a Curtis Axel match.

Ambrose grabs a mic as he strolls up to the stage, and then narrates how he’s going to commit a homicide on RAW. Seriously, like, most of what he talks about will involve him joining Rollins and the Authority in a courtroom. I mean…not the same one, because courts do not work that way. They’d all need lawyers, is what I’m saying.

Wait, we’re watching Seth Rollins try to commit GBH/murder for a second time? I mean…this opened the show.

The Ascension: Reliving Ryback’s 2012

Here’s the Ascension, who are apparently the reincarnation of the Road Warriors and Demolition. I can get behind that sort of thinking, and I know I just said that about WWE programming; don’t judge me. They’ll be facing the team of Unnamed and Jobber to show how badass they are.

Unnamed immediately gets driven into the corner and gets an uppercut from Viktor. Konnor tags in and lays down some strikes. Viktor comes back in, knocking Unnamed around in the corner, then Konnor tags in to help Viktor hurl Unnamed across the ring. Jobber tags in, and gets immediately slain with the Fall of Man.

I like these two, and I think they’re going to be a good match for the Usos and Kidd and Cesaro. Looking forward to them starting to go up against those teams, though; we don’t need to do a whole Ryback thing with them. Just get them into some PPV matches.

Edge and Christian are still backstage, and Noble and Mercury show up to clear the office for the Authority. Even though I’m pretty sure that they’ll be in a different arena on RAW. Apparently ‘getting the office ready’ means replacing the pictures. Edge and Christian then vandalise Hunter and Steph’s magazine cover photo with Sharpies, rather than vandalising Triple H’s quad with a tyre iron. Whatever floats your goat, fellas.

What Are The Odds Of Reigns Just Ending The Streak Here?

Main event time, and I hope you love tainted wins and interference just as much as I do. Reigns approaches the ring, followed by Rusev and Lana (albeit from different directions). They lock up, with Rusev driving Reigns into the corner to start. Reigns ducks a punch, and they circle each other before tying up again. Once again, Rusev bulls Reigns into the corner, then hits some strikes hard and fast. He backs off for the count, and Reigns throws him into the corner in his own right, throwing some hands himself. Rusev reasserts himself with a big waistlock takeover; Roman tries to regain his feet before being taken over again, but then breaks out on his second attempt, clothesline Rusev out of the ring.

Back from the break, Rusev’s got Roman in a facelock, but the Samoan drives him into a corner, Irish whips him into the other, gets elevated out onto the apron and hangs Rusev up on the ropes. He charges at Rusev, but blasts the post with his shoulder as Rusev dodges. German suplex, and then a double-underhook suplex to Reigns by the big Bulgarian. Waistlock applied by Rusev, and Roman is throwing elbows to get out of it, but once he’s out Rusev lays him right back down and hits a bunch of stomps, then applies the waistlock again, transitioning from there into a sleeper hold.

Roman hits punches to the gut, then hangs onto the ropes off an Irish whip, meeting Rusev with a big uppercut, then smacks him right in the face…before Rusev takes him down with a fallaway slam. Sleeper hold to Roman, and when he tries to power out, Rusev hits a knee to the gut. Reigns stops his head from being slammed into the corner repeatedly, and then hits some more blows to Rusev’s face, but the Bulgarian can’t be stopped, and he throws Roman through the ropes. Unfortuately, this seems to piss Reigns off a huge amount, and he gets right back in that ring to punch Rusev some more. Rusev tosses him again, and Roman comes back in again, finally taking Rusev down with his big clothesline.

Rusev tries to keep his distance from Roman, but Reigns keeps close, finally hitting a back suplex. He winds up for the Superman Punch, but a dropkick from Rusev stops him in his tracks. Now Rusev stalks Reigns, but Roman catches his kick and smacks him, and then comes back to hit the Superman Punch. Rusev falls out of the ring, and Reigns goes right back out to put him back in.

Oh, and did somebody say fucking ‘protected’? Here’s the Big Show, and Roman runs right up and Superman Punches him too. Rusev catches him with the big kick when he comes back for the near-fall, and Rusev gets to his feet. He tries for his kick; Roman ducks and hits the Spear! Big Show breaks up the pin by pulling Reigns out of the ring.

Always interesting to see Reigns being overpowered, especially considering the possibility of him fighting Lesnar one day. This match in general was fun to watch, especially how close the match seemed to be, with either man able to seize the advantage at any moment. 3 Stars.

Big Show knocks Reigns around on the outside, throwing him into the barricade and hitting his own, incredibly shitty, spear. He then takes the announce table apart and tries to chokeslam Reigns through it, but Roman manages to whack Show’s head off it, then dropkicks him in the face, and hurls Show over the top of it, before burying him underneath it.

Fair enough show, although not as good as the past couple of weeks. At least Reigns and Rusev was a decent enough faux-marquee moment, and Ryback/Show was another big match: shame we knew they’d never end well. Seven.

David’s Movie Recommendation: I’ve actually only just finished watching it, but I can’t praise The Grand Budapest Hotel enough. Total Wes Anderson movie, with a large number of his usual alumni. Fiennes is just goddamn glorious, and every single one of his lines is giggle-worthy. My screenwriting tutor, Tina Gharavi, was a big fan of this movie, which earns it more credit from me than most any other review. Definite recommendation.

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