Hey kids. I discovered something important this weekend: I can no longer watch the movie “Titanic” in mixed company. It was bad enough back in the mid-90’s when I could admit that the scene with the two old folks that decided to lie down in their beds would “make the room get dusty”. But now, I have two sons: 4 years and 20 months old each. And every single time a scene comes on after the ship starts sinking that involves a parent and their kid — jeezus, I’m a freaking mess. And I even recognize that really, this isn’t that good a movie, and it’s explicitly trying to manipulate me and to pull on my heartstrings. And yet, I let it. Sad, but true.
Okay, I’ve now lost the entire male 18-24 audience with that lead-in. So, since it’s just us adults now — enough of emotionally exploitative James Cameron movies: let’s get onto my speciality. Yup, that means finding the good stuff in the wrestling world. I don’t care if you’re the most bitter smarky smark in the smark-verse: I will endeavor to get you to admit that yes, some of the stuff out there is worth watching and cheering/booing for. (Some of it is even good enough to make you end your sentences in a preposition.)
Love the concept? Hate it? Think I missed something important from last week? See something this week that you think should be here? Email me.
Thanks to everyone that wrote last week. I had a couple of people throw on opinions on the fan hatred for Cena, and was hoping to turn that into this week’s opening. Unfortunately, the last couple of days have prevented that – so we’ll get to it next week. (See last week’s column if you have no idea what I’m talking about.)
Monday Night Raw
1. Two storylines seems to be developing with HHH a bit more every week, though I’m not sure which one will actually come to fruition (if either do): the acknowledgement that HHH is indeed Vince’s son-in-law (“the old man” comments), and the D-X tributes that he and Shawn keep pulling out of the bag at random points. I’d be very curious to see how they deal with the first story, and what the aftermath would be; and the latter would be one bit of “instant nostalgia” that I would actually enjoy. The memory of Shawn and Trip wearing spit-shields (with mini-wipers) while talking to Sgt. Slaughter still brings a smile to my face.
2. Now, just to cover my weekly “lech” comment – it was a refreshing change to see the top of Lita’s breasts this week, as opposed to the usual view between them. She probably enjoyed it too, since I’m sure it involved much less double-sided tape to keep the clothing in place.
3. “Triple H” chants? Those whacky British – they crack me up. (Benny Hill, and that Monty Python guy – just funny, funny stuff.) Okay, seriously – I’m just impressed that Creative decided to leave the chants on the audio. They’ve had an annoying habit recently of trying to edit the crowd’s reactions to what they want to hear, rather than what the crowd actually feels.
4. Honestly, I don’t care about anyone else’s opinions on this: the Spirit Squad are AWESOME. Their “introductions” to Edge, Trip and Cena were hilarious – and the crowd was going crazy waiting for The Big Three to just start wailing on them.
5. Matt Stryker wore an argyle sweater vest to the ring. That’s gold, Jerry! Gold! I hope and pray this guy gets an extended angle with one of the secondary belts within the next couple of months. If Shelton had 10% of this guy’s promo ability, he’d have been World Champ 6 months ago.
Wow, those five went quick. I didn’t even get a chance to mention Trish/Micki, RVD, or Shane-O-Mac.
1. I am the ideal audience for someone like Vince Russo: for the most part, I find actual wrestling matches to be a slight distraction between promos and skits. However, I very much enjoyed the fact that Alex Shelley and Sonjay Dutt worked so well as a team, with no shenanigans involving Shelley’s loyalties and such. The two of them can really go, and I was pleased with the lack of distractions.
2. Okay – not to get negative here, but I really, really don’t like Scott Steiner. Honestly, it depresses me to remember him back in the early/mid 90’s, when he was an absolute freak — in a GOOD way. So, why did I actually feel a mark-out coming when he and Joe went face-to-face on the ramp? I’ll hold off on forming an actual opinion on this until they meet face-to-face, but in an ideal world, Joe wipes the floor with him.
3. One sign of desperation on the part of a bitter IWC smark: when presented with a tag title match featuring four extremely talented in-ring performers, they resort to bitching about whether or not the challengers “deserve” a title shot. Chris Daniels and AJ Styles? Yeah, c’mon – what have they ever done, huh? [insert eye roll here] That’s now two potential MotY candidate tag matches coming up, involving 8 of the top 10 guys in the company. Sweet.
4. Y’all can kiss mine and Hyatte’s collective asses: Kevin Nash on the mic is a guaranteed thumbs up. Can’t wait to hear from him next week.
5. Buff and Luger appeared on my TV, and I didn’t mind it one bit. (Well, yeah – it was because I didn’t have to watch them wrestle. Hey, sometimes you take the Bright Side items where you can get ’em.)
(allegedly) Friday Night Smackdown
1. Regal gets cheered, and gets a title shot, in England. Bravo. Not to mention, this was practically the perfect start of JBL’s American-centric run with the US title. I love it when a plan comes together.
2. I said a whole bunch of not-very-nice things about Rey’s win back at Wrestlemania (most of them in the actual live recap). But, considering how things went with Orton, and the fact that Angle’s body is breaking down on him by the day – I guess they picked the right guy to win that match, eh? Well, shows you how much I know.
3. Honestly, it’s tough to screw up a good catfight. Especially with participants like Jillian and Melina. I’d watch Melina read the phone book for two hours on a Friday night.
4. I was surprised they put Lashley and Henry together in a KotR match. I didn’t have high hopes for the match itself. And yet, Lashley continues to impress – if he can have a watchable match against someone generally recognized as the worst main-event wrestler since Psycho Sid, the sky is the limit.
5. Like I mentioned above, Angle is working with constant day-to-day pain: the kind of stuff that would put you and I in Vicodin-aided bed-rest for a couple of months. And yet, he’s still able to pull off that kind of match with Rey. I hope you all can appreciate him while he’s still here. (And yes, I mark out for that pop-up top-rope overhead suplex EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.)
And thus we end this week’s goodness. See ya next Monday.