-Okay, okay, okay…maybe, just maybe, this will be okay. I mean, for all we know, these girls are going to make the best of this opportunity and put on some incredibly entertaining stuff. And maybe, maybe the Pros will be great, too! Sure, Primo hasn’t done much of anything, and the Bella Twins, Kelly Kelly and Alicia Fox don’t have as much experience combined as Gail Kim does all by herself, but Goldust is constantly (pun intended) gold these days. And sure, the giantess Aloisa is gone, but let’s not kid ourselves thinking that she was going to be anything better than a female Khali. This could work, people! These girls may show us something other than g-rated bathing suit contests and horrible promos that make us want to stab our eyes with rakes! Yeah! LET’S DO THIS!
-…….we’re boned, aren’t we?
-Well, “Wild & Young” is out, replaced with some new song that I’m sure I’ll hate in a week or two. Not terrible for now, though. It sounds like, “You Make a Rainbow,” but I’m not sure if that’s accurate. The set is also purple now instead of yellow.
-Oh, and the FIRST thing my wife says during the opening montage is, “Where’s the Amazon?” When I tell her that Aloisa has already been fired, she is less than pleased. “I was really looking forward to the Amazon!” Man, she must have been really difficult or absolutely useless in the ring, as it’s already made the most casual of casual watchers lose interest in the show.
-Striker is in the ring and introduces the Pros along with their rookies. Wow, Kelly Kelly’s voice is grating like steel wool on skin. She brings out Naomi, who is, I must say, gorgeous. My wife astutely points out that Ms. Night “got back.” Indeed, dearest. Indeed. The Bellas are out next with Jamie Keyes. Jamie is pretty ripped, and wearing crazy stiletto-heeled boots. The wife makes a good point that, looking at Jamie’s chiseled arms, there is absolutely no way that those boobs are real. I know! Breast implants, in wrestling?! Fiddlesticks, I say! Absolute poppycock and whatnot! Okay, moving on. Primo (with music that’s better than he probably deserves) brings out AJ, who’s tiny. She’s Cole’s favorite, and she’s mine, too, as she’s a writer who also reads comic books and plays video games. I bet you all know who I’ll be voting for now, eh? I’m not a complex man; sue me. Alicia Fox is out next, introducing her rookie as “the meanest of the mean,” and it’s Maxine. Long black hair…funny-looking teeth. Goldust gets a HUGE pop, and that makes me happy. He brings out Aksana, complete with gold dress. She’s a very pretty Lithuanian girl, and I’m not sure how much more that is. Vickie Guerrero is out, and Cole yells, “Yeah!” Apparently, he’s a big Vickie fan. She fired Aloisa for getting in her way. Okay, whatever. She introduces a new girl, Kaitlyn. She’s from Houston, and was voted class clown in her high school. I don’t know who she is, and her look isn’t terribly distinctive from all of the other girls, so I hope Aloisa was really absymal.
-All the divas are in the ring, and Jamie Keyes kind of scares me. She’s the buffest, but I’m not sure how much else there is. Striker says the “smart, sexy, powerful” tag line that they’ve been hawking for the last year or two, and every time they say it, the more forced it feels. Each girl’s going to get a chance to speak, and let’s see if any of them drops a verbal train wreck on us tonight!
-Kaitlyn is first, and calls Stryker handsome. She’s not just the girl next door; she’s the girl that would put firecrackers in your mailbox. She’s the one that gave you your first kiss, and then gave you a wedgie. She’s booed, and seems like a whole bunch of nothing special. Stryker tries to move on, but Vickie yells at her, saying that it wasn’t good enough, and that if she’s going to represent her, she needs to do much better. She goes up again, and adds next to nothing…other than that she’s so happy that Vickie Guerrero is her Pro. Vickie is giddily sated, and we can move on. Remember, WWE/Vickie: the point of this show is to get the rookie over, not to get the most over heel in the company even MORE over. Just a thought. Aksana is up next, and she has the weirdest pronounciation of “WWE” I’ve ever heard. She also speaks in broken English, and even throws in a little Lithuanian just for kicks. “Let me entertainment you!” Stryker says, “She loves Double Double E!” Maxine, after making fun of Aksana’s…interesting speech issues, says that she has three senses: business sense, street sense, and common sense. The audience “Whats!” the crap out of her, and neither I or the wife are all that impressed. She, apparently, is the heel. Here comes AJ, and she says that Maxine needs a hug. She says that we’re witnessing a dream, and Cole hates every second of the feel-good nonsense. Her promo is weak, frankly, and the wife doesn’t like her at all. Jamie Keyes is ready to be a part of “the greatest entertainment in the whole world.” Does that just sound weird to me? She never puts less than 110% into whatever she does, and I HATE when people do that. Naomi is lotsa sass. She says that the WWE Universe has been missing one thing (namely, her), and that she’s not intimidated by anything. Her actions will speak louder than her words, if her words make any sense, which they only half do. She seems comfortable enough up there, but her pronunciation and grammar are a bit hard for me to follow. I’ll keep listening, of course. The wife likes Jamie and Naomi, and the rest can go scratch. Call me crazy, but I kind of liked Aksana’s wacky non-English promo.
-Commercial for Legendary, naturally. WWE Magazine gave it a 5 out of 5, so you know it must be good.
-Diva Challenge! Stryker says that the first elimination will be in four weeks, which surprises me, as I thought the whole season was only five weeks. Anyway, the girl who wins the most challenges in these four weeks will be immune from elimination when that comes. And the first challenge is…a diva dance off. OH GOD, DO I NOT CARE. I openly groan, bringing a few giggles from my wife. The girls applaud, and Kaitlyn seems to be a tad insecure. The audience will judge the winner. Naomi is called up first, and Stryker figures that she needs someone to dance with…and calls out Cole. Naturally, the audience boos the shit out of him, but he embraces it, and comes into the ring with a funky hat, leg warmers, and ballerina slippers. This is a HUGE disadvantage to the girls. Naomi can dance, but she’s gotta move all around the guy just gyrating goofily about. She’s crazily flexible, and even does a pireoutte into a split. Jamie Keyes kind of moves back and forth and shakes her butt, and the audience boos. Michael Cole is sent away, and Tony Schimmel comes up to dance with AJ. AJ, for her part, seems SUPER PUMPED to dance with Schimmel. AJ kind of grinds about him, playing with his tie, walking around him, squatting down and showing what is, I must admit, a very nice butt for everyone in this PG audience to see. My wife: “She looks like she was a stripper in the past.” Not so great for the “geeky girl next door” image. “She doesn’t seem genuine to me. I don’t think someone that sweet and innocent would try and be a WWE Diva, you know what I mean?” The woman has a point. Maxine is next, and she’s even more stripperiffic, as she actually pulls down the suspenders of her skirt, and again, someone in the back office neglected to mention to these women that this shit probably isn’t tolerated anymore. Good thing nobody’s watching! Schimmel is retired, and Josh Matthews is brought up to dance with Aksana. He actually goes to dance with her, ballroom-style, and she’s game. Of course, this limits what she can actually show, but it’s apparently not much. Kaitlyn and Josh both do the robot, and then Kaitlyn breaks out the Running Man AND the Elaine dance. That might have actually been my favorite, just out of sheer wackiness. She know she couldn’t outdance Naomi, and she wasn’t no hoochie mama, so she just went down the wonderful road of who-gives-a-crap.
-Voting time! Naomi gets a great response, while Jamie Keyes is booed. AJ gets a surprisingly good response, and everyone after her is viciously booed. Hey, Kaitlyn at least did something different! Michael Cole is also jeered for good measure. Stryker teases an AJ win, but it’s obviously Naomi, something even AJ knows, and the latter applauds for the former. Cole, naturally, takes credit for the win.
-So you know, if it were up to me, I would have fast-forwarded through the entire thing. Do you hear me, Inside Pulse? Do you HEAR the DEPTHS of my dedication?
-Next up, we’re getting Naomi vs. Maxine, and I much preferred Maxine with the curly hair seen in her picture. Ah well.
-Oh, the song is called, “You Make the Rain Fall” by Kevin Rudolph. Expect to see him in an NXT audience soon.
Match One: Maxine and Alicia Fox vs. Naomi and Kelly Kelly
-Maxine has weird, mini-skirt-esque ring gear. I don’t know how else to put it. Naomi is sorting a black and pink sports bra combo top and neon green stretch pants. An odd choice for ring gear, for sure. My wife, to me: “Is Kelly Kelly a good wrestler?” Me: “No.” Kelly busts out the satellite headscissors early on, then tags in Naomi. Great move by Naomi, as she has Alicia in a headlock, then springboards off the rop rope into a sunset flip onto Alicia. Nice. She slides under Alicia, and hits a very nice dropkick, followed by a leaping butt-bump, which my wife needs to see again to make sure that it actually happened. Well, the girl’s got some moves, I’ll say that. The rally ends with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker by Fox. Maxine is tagged in, and my wife is immediately unimpressed. She hits a bronco-buster onto Naomi’s midsection, then a suplex and a pin attempt. She tags out, but Alicia does little of note before tagging out. Maxine back in, but she gets rolled up by Naomi, and that’s it, apparently…or maybe it wasn’t supposed to be. I think that Alicia broke up the count, but it wasn’t enough, or Maxine forgot to kick out, or I don’t know. Naomi reverses a suplex into one of her own, followed by a floatover and pin attempt. The ref comes in to tell her it’s already over. Well, that’s a fantastic sign of things to come, now isn’t it?
Winners: Naomi and Kelly Kelly
-Well, Naomi may well be an early favorite, and Maxine has shown next to nothing. That ending schmoz, however, suggests that one or both or all FOUR of these ladies aren’t quite ready for prime time.
-Next is a Diva Flag Race! Because wrestling is for losers!
-Okay, so this flag thing is a race in stages, where the girls run down to poles that have flags for all but one of the divas. First time, Jamie Keyes is flagless, and thus eliminated. They’re running through the crowd now. Second time, AJ is out. Aksana is third to go, but to be fair, they were kind of forcing her behind them. Maxine falls down getting to the next one, but she actually recovers and jumps off the barricade to get the second flag, eliminating Kaitlyn. Final stage, and they run into the ring, and Naomi wins it, thus giving her a clean sweep tonight. She’s given the mic, and is out of breath as the crowd cheers her. Well, someone connected with the crowd tonight. She says that her athleticism gives her an edge over the other girls, but that this is only the beginning, and she hopes that she can keep going up. Felt real, so I’ll take it. My wife is also a Naomi fan right now.
-Hey, there’s gonna be more wrestling! Hooray?
-Hard push for Legendary, and Matthews pushes the same crock of garbage that the King did last night, saying that the limited release is actually a very SPECIAL thing, and that only a few movie theaters get the PRIVILEGE of showing John Cena try to be a dramatic actor. See, common wrestling fans? It’s a privilege to show this movie, so only a few theaters are special enough to show it. What utter nonsense, and if anyone over the age of 12 follows that logic, they shouldn’t be allowed to breed for fear of polluting the genepool.
-Rundown of the card for Night of Champions. I’m there for Bryan vs. Miz.
Rookie Video Package: Jamie
-She’s always been an athlete, and got into weightlifting when she was cheerleading. She was also in nursing school, but didn’t have a passion for it. They don’t show any footage of her wrestling, which is rather telling. She wants to be a role model, and would like to emulate Trish Stratus’ career. What girl wouldn’t?
Match Two: Goldust and Aksana vs. Primo and AJ
-Aksana may not have long for this competition, but you could do a lot worse for a new Marlena. I think she could stick around as a manager, but I don’t know what else she has to offer. We’ll see what happens.
-Primo and Goldust start, and I know it’s been said, but Goldust seems to be in better shape than he has in years. After a little back and forth, Primo tags in AJ, and the girls mix it up. Aksana, on one hand, can barely hit a legdrop, but then hits a pretty decent backbreaker. AJ and Aksana screw up a wheelbarrow, and so they then repeat the spot (ick) that was meant to happen, a wheelbarrow into a bulldog on Aksana, and AJ gets the pin. Huh. You know, I’ve been hearing that AJ is the best in-ring of all the divas, but that match didn’t really do her any favors.
Winners: Primo and AJ
-Vickie Guerrero is out now, excusing herself, and dragging poor Kaitlyn out to the ring so that she can introduce herself AGAIN. Kaitlyn looks sorry to be out there, and kind of upset, naturally. What this seems to be is a way to get the crowd behind Kaitlyn, as she’ll just soak up all of this sympathy for having to deal with the zoftig mega-bitch that is Vickie. Of course, this could backfire, and the crowd could hate her for having anything to do with Vickie at all. Time will tell, I guess. Primo interrupts Vickie, saying that this is AJ’s moment, but Vickie couldn’t care less. AJ tells her to go away, and Vickie comes back with the classic “Do you know who I am?” AJ does, but doesn’t seem to care. Vickie sics an uncomfortable Kaitlyn on AJ, and Kaitlyn does indeed attack, but AJ reverses out of a slam and spears Kaitlyn into Vickie. Kaitlyn is incredibly apologetic, but Vickie screams and storms out as her rookie follows pathetically behind her, AJ celebrating with Primo in the ring.
-For awhile, I felt like I was watching less of a wrestling show and more of a low-rent talent show. I didn’t know I’d be getting into this nonsense when I took over recapping the show, but I figure I’ll see it to its conclusion. That being said, it feels like they’re at the end of the show’s run, as they are, and they just needed something to fill the last few weeks. As for my impressions, I like Naomi and AJ in the ring. Naomi is crazy athletic, and while AJ didn’t make a great first impression, there’s something about her that I still like. She has a way of moving that just feels polished, and watching her stand in the ring after ejecting Vicki gave me a sense that she belonged. Aksana, I think, could be a fun manager. Call me crazy, but I kind of dig her complete mangling of the English language. Again, let her keep hanging out with Goldust. I’ve no thoughts on Jamie Keyes, really, and Maxine seems like a giant pile of nothing special. As for Kaitlyn…hell, I like her. I don’t know if she can wrestle a lick, or deliver any more of a promo than she did at the beginning of the show, but she comes off as someone who’s really trying, but is in completely over her head. Hell, she probably is way over her head. She reminds me of someone I might have known in high school. She’s pretty, but not shockingly so, and she’s hot, but not the anorexic type that WWE usually gets. Plus, her dancing showed me that she’s got enough real personality to keep the other girls on their toes if WWE allows her to show it.
Tags: AJ, aksana, jamie keyes, Kaitlyn, maxine, naomi, Vickie Guerrero