Hello there, ladies and gentlemen. I join you after finally having seen the Godzilla movie; I was certainly impressed by what I saw, and that’s all I’ll say about it. My only problem is now I have no cinematic experience to get excited for until The Hobbit. So I turn to wrestling.
Cody Rhodes, Take Me Home To The Place I Belong…
We’ve got the Usos here, with all of their chanting and crowd participation. The tag champs are going to face the Rhodes Brothers, who are apparently looking to get back into the title hunt: titles they won due to outside interference and lost to old men. But chase that dream.
Goldust starts off with Jey, gets shot off the ropes and manages to catch a leapfrogging Jey with an atomic drop before both men exchange arm drags. Apparently Cody has been celebrating all week long following his victory over Sandow, which is sad in ways I’d need a poet to adequately explain. Cody gets a blind tag and comes in with a dropkick to Jey. Arm wrench to Jey, who backs Cody into the corner, allowing Jimmy to tag in and splash Rhodes. Big chop to Cody and a tag to Jey as both champs drop the double elbow. Jimmy in again, chopping Cody before the Son of a Son of a Plumber tries to get two pins and runs into an uppercut. Michael Cole takes this moment to praise Rybaxel, which can only mean the end is nigh, and Goldust gets the tag, dropping forearms to Jimmy. Cody hits a cheap shot to the back of Jimmy’s head and gets the dashing smacked off him in return before Jimmy eats a Rhodes Uppercut, knocking him out of the ring. Cody tags in as we go to break.
During the break, we get a Bo Dallas promo in which he tells us ‘Bolieve you can fly’; that’s some seriously awful advice. Back to the action and Cody is in control of Jey, then he tags in Goldust, who sends Jey’s shoulder into the corner and clobbers him from the outside. Shoulder-lock to Jey, who rolls out of it, but eats a spinebuster. Cody tags in, continuing the beating to Jey with a seriously aggressive streak. Jey finally scores with an uppercut, but gets one right back before hitting his dragon whip. Goldust gets the tag, managing to take Jey down, only to get low-bridged and sent right out of the ring. Cody throws Goldust back in, but doesn’t get the tag fast enough, and Jimmy joins him as the legal man, knocking him every which way around the ring, hitting a Samoan drop and a Samoan Wrecking Ball. Cross Rhodes is countered; Cody runs into an uppercut and gets caught with a corkscrew moonsault. Goldust breaks up the pin and clotheslines Jimmy out of the ring, only to get kicked off the apron by Jey, who gets caught with a Disaster Kick by Cody. Jimmy breaks up the pin, and Cody walks right into a kick. Samoan Splash ends the match with a victory for the champs.
I liked this one. Some very nice sequences; went a little beyond your usual back and forth. 2.5 Stars.
After the match, Cody slumps against the barricade by JBL and yells ‘what do I gotta do?’ JBL’s reply is inaudible, but probably involved getting a midget mascot. Also, why do the losers of matches appear to be interacting with JBL more? Is he starting a cult? I’d watch that angle.
Oh, Ziggler bitched at Batista this week, so tonight Batista will be ripping out Ziggler’s spine and wearing it like a cartilage-edged boa.
We relive the announcement that Daniel Bryan needs neck surgery. But not before Kane managed to jump him once more, to give him something to remember him by. Other than, you know, the neck injury. Oh, and it looks like Brie Bella might still have some relevance to this story still. Which…is…
Anyway, we’ll be getting an update on Bryan’s surgery later tonight. I assume therefore it won’t be: ‘He’ll never walk again! We’ve stolen a man’s most precious years from him!’
Here’s John Cena, who gives his condolences to Bryan and manages not to be horrifyingly grating whilst doing so. Cena turns his attentions to Wyatt, addressing the idea of the Last Man Standing match. He says you can’t quit in a Last Man Standing match, and I’m pretty sure you can, John; I’m pretty sure you could just decide not to stand up. Wow, has Cena just won all of his because he didn’t know he was allowed to stay down? He then compares Bray unfavourably to JBL, which is over a goddamn line. John starts hilariously explaining to us all that Bray Wyatt doesn’t have balls, and DID YOU FUCKING MISS COMEDY HOUR WITH JOHN CENA? He does, however, accept the Last Man Standing match, so hopefully he’ll get hit in the face with something heavy for every joke he makes over the following weeks. Cena makes an open challenge to any member of the Wyatt Family; Bray can choose who faces him.
Thankfully, Bray then shows up. Amazing how he can talk gibberish and yet make more sense than John Cena. He says he wants to thank Cena for helping him find something inside his mind: the cure to whatever it is that Cena’s doing. Bray then starts singing to end the promo.
Cesaro is backstage, and brings on Damien Sandow, asking him to comment on dressing up as Magneto. Sandow is a bit of snarky bitch, but then quotes Pink Floyd, so awesome.
Heath Slater vs. El Torito: Who Is The Beast And Who Is The Man?
The leader of 3MB, if any man would ever accept such a position, will be facing El Torito. And how dare Sandow act annoyed with his career’s direction when Heath Slater is involved in this farce?
The two circle each other, and then one of Los Matadores tosses Slater his cape and Torito gores Slater in the behind. Watch it, Sandow. You watch this and you be grateful. Apparently midgets are attracted to pink, because as long as Slater has that cape, Torito’s going for him. Slater gets rid of the cloak, leading to El Torito spazzing out somewhat and Slater grabs him. A kick to the thigh levels Slater, but he manages to catch and bodyslam Torito. According to Michael Cole, El Torito is on Twitter, which is a piece of information I shall neither be affected by nor remember. Slater blocks a gore, signalling for Hornswoggle to gore Torito; he accidentally gores Slater, who eats a springboard moonsault by Torito for the win.
There was nothing that could possibly salvage this, and you’re a liar if you say there is. This thing needs to die, and it needed to die when it started. I’ll give it 0.5 Stars, because they didn’t release an airborne supervirus into the world during that match, slaughtering thousands. And only because of that.
I honestly wouldn’t be surprised if a future backstage segment will feature Slater performing seppuku. I would also most likely press ‘record’.
We recap the Shield demanding that this feud continue. Which is damn cruel, considering the only sensible result is a Shield victory: all they’re doing is forcing Evolution into losing more matches. Also, Batista’s beard, whilst undoubtedly an experiment noble in its origins, does nothing for him whatsoever. Minor point, but it’s getting to me now.
Eva Marie: The New Earl Hebner
Nikki Bella is going to be facing Natalya here, with Eva Marie as the special guest referee, although the symbol of her authority is apparently a zebra-print bra. I gather that something probably happened to Total Divas, and maybe I should know what that was, but the list of things I’d rather do that watch that show includes every activity known to man except ‘vote UKIP’ (requisite British joke!).
Waistlock by Natalya into a leglock. Thesz press by Nikki, and Natalya takes her over with a headlock. The ladies chain wrestle before Natalya catches the Bella with a spinning clothesline. They trade blows, and Nikki rocks Natalya’s face off her knee. Nikki dodges a charge and gets the back of her head slammed off the mat, then Natalya puts her into the surfboard. Nikki’s shoulders are down, but Eva Marie doesn’t count; only when Nikki reverses the pin does a three-count occur.
The sequences these two brought out were good to see; the rest was kind of messy. I’m honestly not sure where this is going, but am waiting for Paige to steal Natalya away from it and wrestle her. 1.5 Stars.
So, Eva Marie’s either a bitch or doesn’t know how to referee a pro-wrestling match. As someone who has, I’d like to say it’s not that difficult. Even when those bastards don’t tell you anything about what they’re going to do out there. And make you a surprise entrant in the battle royal (I was the only one surprised).
Ah, yes, we recap the strange, non-coitus moments of Fandayla’s relationship. I’ll actually say I found it more oddly-heartwarming than I did cheesy. And I’m almost always in favour of giving someone something which stops them spinning their wheels (exceptions include: 3MB, Natalya ‘Neidfart’ and many, many more). Also, let’s face it, Fandango knows that he can’t do better. He should honestly not be doing this well.
Speaking of relationships, Roman’s squeeze Renee Young is backstage with Dolph Ziggler. She asks him why he would possibly want to commit suicide via Batista. She really wants to help this depressed soul. Dolph says that Batista’s been a disappointment. Is that really where this is coming from, Ziggler? Tell us about your mother. He says that Batista didn’t evolve, so now we’re dragging Charles Motherfuckin’ Darwin into this mini-feud. Dolph walks off, and wow, Renee: just let a guy leave when he’s going to kill himself.
The Passion Of The Dolph
Here comes Dolph Ziggler, smiling to hide the tears. I’m now trying to decide whether this is a televised suicide or a snuff film. And here’s Batista, with rage in his eyes and a beard on his face. I guess with Bryan gone, the facial hair count is getting low; we can’t expect the Wyatts to shoulder the entire burden.
And here we go. God speed, Mr Ziggles. He dodges away twice, rolling out of the ring and back in, and has he decided that he’s got something to live for? Like a United States Championship shot? He then starts pounding on Batista, who drags him out of the ring and hurls him into the barricade. So, he has chosen the way of pain. Ziggler’s thrown into the steps. Michael says that ‘many experts’ think that the Shield caught Evolution by surprise. I’m sorry: are we experts now? CB: get the lab coats. Harrak: apply for funding. Sanders: debate with me on Freudian Symbolism inherent in the RKO. Back in the ring, Batista hurls Ziggler into a corner as the rest of the locker room go from Denial to Anger. Sleeper applied, and Dolph tries to fight out, and gets caught with a big spinebuster. Boos aplenty from the audience; a lot of them believe in the Sanctity of Life. Batista Bomb attempted, but Ziggler fights back and hits a DDT! Both men reach their feet in what has to be the most elaborate suicide ever, and Ziggler ducks a charge, hitting splash and reigning down punches; Batista then hits a blatant low-blow.
In my expert opinion, I actually found that quite entertaining: I shouldn’t like squash matches as much as I do, but if you ever saw me play a video game you’d understand where that comes from. And I’d like to see at least one truly dangerous out here, and you could arguably do worse than Batista. 2 Stars.
Batista continues with the assault as Michael puts in: ‘now this is about hurting Ziggler’. I’m sorry, was it ever not? Batista Bomb lays Ziggler out, and instead of a twenty-one gun salute we get Lillian announcing Dolph as the winner, and instead of a dirge we get Ziggler’s music. Classy. Batista then decides that his grand work is not yet complete, and so Batista Bombs Dolph onto the barricade. Lesson learned, kids: this is what could happen next time you talk shit on the internet.
As Plans Go, Sheamus’ Is Pretty Solid
Our United States Champion is here, and he’ll be facing Titus O’Neil. So, another pre-match beatdown and a Brogue Kick: excellent. And Titus has a microphone in his hand: are we about to see the new Alicia Fox moment? He asks how Sheamus is the United States Champ when he’s not even from the US, so apparently Zeb and Swagger couldn’t make it tonight. He tells Sheamus to get the hell out of his ring.
Sheamus Brogue Kicks Titus immediately: shades of a young Zack Ryder. I’m actually surprised I managed to call that half-successfully.
Not much point, is there?
Not-Renee is standing outside the Exotic Express and he tries to get through the wall of partiers. Apparently this guy’s name is Byron Saxton. Yeah, he’s Not-Renee. Adam makes his appearance, and is clearly LSD’d off this planet. He says he has no issue with Coulter and Swagger, so his tormenting of them really comes off as something someone with a narcotic dependency would do. Also, wouldn’t it be amazing if what we’re seeing is actually what Adam Rose is seeing? In reality, there’s no bunny, no girls, no lemon, no cheeseburger: Adam Rose is just a guy standing next to a broken-down van he thinks is the Exotic Express and he thinks the people who are trying to get him to urinate in a cup are there to interview him. He makes Byron have his lollipop, and Byron starts acting crazy. Because that’s where the drugs are and now Byron is seeing everything as Adam sees it!
If You Don’t Eat Your Meat, You Can’t Have Any Pudding
Here’s Damien Sandow, and he issued an open challenge to anyone. So, it would make sense for Adam Rose to make his debut against this guy: clash of ideologies and all that, but no: here’s Santino and Emma. Joy.
Sandow starts pounding on Sandow, and I think we can all relate. He misses a charge and blasts the turnbuckle and gets Cobra’d. Santino wins.
Wow: I don’t usually give marks for brevity, but I’m willing to make an exception here. 2 Stars.
Sandow grabs the mic after the match, and that was a damn fast recovery from a pinning move. He says he’s a great soldier: the smart guy loses. He says that some idiot keeps his mic on, and that prompts them to turn it off. Walked into that one, Damien.
Heyman’s Streak-Gloating Lasted Longer Than That Match
R-Truth’s in the ring, and out comes Paul Heyman. He tells R-Truth that he can’t handle the Truth: being a Paul Heyman guy is the best thing in the world ever. He brings up the Streak again, and the Memorial Battle Royal, and that’s sure not getting old. Cesaro makes his way out to that damned air raid siren; I can’t watch a Cesaro entrance with my grandparents in the room: they try to find the bomb shelter.
Cesaro immediately goes on the offence, going for an arm-drag before R-Truth rolls him. Up Truth vaults over Cesaro, hitting a calf-kick to the face, and nearly gets the Scissor Kick, but Cesaro catches him with Very European Uppercut and finishes it with the Neutraliser.
Another short match, and this time I’m less happy about it. This is why I want Rusev to keep his steady rise going: when he gets to guys like Cesaro and Sheamus and Barrett we’ll have some interesting matches ahead of us. 1.5 Stars.
Cesaro holds the ropes open for Heyman to leave, and that shouldn’t remind me of Scott Steiner and Stacy Keibler, but oh God it did.
We recap the recap of Bryan’s neck, and apparently they’ll be turning their attention to the championship situation on RAW. I hope to hell it involves making the damn thing one belt; why else would you unify the damn things?
Meatball, Meatball, Spaghetti Underneath! Ravioli, Ravioli, Great Barrier Reef!
Cena comes out, followed by Wyatt, as Michael Cole says that if Bray doesn’t put himself in the match, then he’s a coward. Or, maybe he wants Rowan or Harper to be able to say they main-evented a SmackDown in a singles match. Did you consider that, Michael? The Wyatts surround the ring, and here come the Usos to back the Wyatts off. These guys really can’t leave well enough alone.
Back from a quick break, and apparently Erick Rowan will be facing Cena. Man, that Bray really loves spreading the fame. Rowan jumps Cena, ramming his head into a corner and punching him to the ground. Cole also says that Wyatt lacks courage…because he chose to fight in a Last Man Standing match rather than an ordinary singles match? Bodyslam to Cena, and I swear Rowan could not look more like a cartoon. And Cole’s level of twisting the truth has reached 1984 levels: he’s actually less honest now than when he was a heel. Cena’s thrown into the steps, then back into the ring. Rowan double-fists Cena (you know what I mean), and Cena manages to hit a dropkick (‘manages’ being a good choice of word). Big boot to John, knocking him back down, and he is just Rowan’s bitch right now. Pumphandle backbreaker: that’s an interesting one, I must say. Cena hangs Rowan up on the ropes, which according to SmackDown 4: Shut Your Mouth makes him a heel. He gets clotheslined, tries to fight back, but gets shoulder-blocked right back down. Rowan misses a splash, and catches Cena in his Frisky Bearhug. We’re actually seeing a guy beat and physically dominate Cena fairly as Cena employs heel tactics: what’s happening right here?
Rowan turns the bearhug into a side-slam, and I’m seeing some stuff I really don’t remember seeing before. Erick runs into a shoulder, then gets Cena’s spin-out powerbomb. Five-Knuckle Shuffle leads to an AA, but Rowan wriggles out, catches him in a fallaway slam and charges him, crushing him in the corner. Boot to the side of Cena, and he tries for another one, but Cena locks in the STF. Harper tries to interfere and the Usos maul him before leaping out at him. Rowan claw-slams a distracted Cena, getting the close two-count. Cena slides out of a pumphandle slam, and the AA gets the win.
I’m very impressed. I’d tended to disregard Rowan as Harper and Bray started to take prominence, but this reminded me of my interest in him at the start: he did things in there I can’t remember seeing before. 3 Stars.
This was an…interesting SmackDown. Tonne of a crap, but some rather good bits in between. Focusing on the positive rather than the piss-poor elements, I’d say that it gets a seven.
Tags: 3MB, Adam Rose, batista, Bray Wyatt, Cesaro, Cody Rhodes, Damien Sandow, Dolph Ziggler, El Torito, Erick Rowan, Eva Marie, goldust, Heath Slater, Hornswoggle, john cena, Los Matadores, natalya neidhart, Nikki Bella, Paul Heyman, R-Truth, Santino Marella, sheamus, Smackdown, titus o'neil, usos, WWE