Happy Friday, folks. It’s Friday night, which means (for a few more months, at least) it’s time to write up the SmackDown Report. And is it odd that all I want is more Adam Rose and Tyson Kidd antics? That was my favourite part of last week’s episode, but then it’s possible I’m the tiniest bit of a sociopath.
We begin by recapping the Liverpool-based RAW from Monday, with Ryback being too cool for all y’all. His badass points which, I’ll freely admit, I’d thought gone forever, have definitely been regained. And can we just all talk about what an awful employee Kane is? How many times now has he screwed up what he was supposed to be doing, or failed to keep his cool? And they give away a slot on the Authority team to this guy? I’d actually be happy if they brought back Jamie Noble for some cruiserweight shenanigans. Oh, and Luke Harper apparently disdains doorbells in favour of throwing midcard champs into rooms instead: the fuck kind of etiquette did Chez Wyatt have?
We’re still in Liverpool, which is some piss-poor progress through these sceptred isles. And the German announce team is here, bound to fall victim to some icy British politeness at some point this evening. Jericho’s music hits, and it’s never even a surprise when he shows up anymore. Admittedly, the Highlight Reel layout was set up, so there was a clue this time. Jericho manages to get back-to-back chants for the Bunny and Funaki, then introduces the Authority. Lot of hate for these two as they make their way to the ring. And I’ve read and watched too much Mafia literature and media, but it really does seem like this would be the perfect time for Team Cena to quickly strike and hospitalise these two ahead of Survivor Series.
Jericho asks them why they wanted to be on the Highlight Reel, and Stephanie can’t help herself from being a bitch, as usual. She says she wants to give people what they want, and then makes the claim that we ‘respect’ the superstars and divas. Um…moving on… Steph says they’re being made to fight for what they believe in, and asks where Superman would be without Lex Luthor. Well…there’d be a few more people on earth, I imagine. Less horrible stuff would have happened. I don’t know if Luthor’s still the president, but that situation might be a little better. I mean…I’ve read The Dark Knight Strikes Again, and it seems to me that the entire Justice League would have done pretty well minus Lex Luthor. Honestly? Fuck Lex Luthor. Steph asks who could run the WWE except the Authority, and personally I’d like to see what Paul Heyman could do with that kind of budget, roster and technology; I’d much prefer it to Cena’s idea that the WWE Universe being in control. I mean…it really does seem like if Team Cena wins, we’ve sort of automatically been behind a coup d’état. Jericho’s idea of how the WWE runs appears to extend to exactly who licks boots (literally, not figuratively), cleans toilets and gets thrown into pools of mud, which indicates that he is not someone we want in our government once we take the helm.
Finally Trips gets mad that we’re all watching his wife getting covered in mud on a big screen. To be honest, I’d be a little annoyed as well. He says the Authority doesn’t need anyone’s acceptance, and that Team Authority is going to tear through Team Cena. According to my girlfriend, whose university course is currently teaching her how to perpetuate a genocide (and I really wish I was joking or stretching the truth there), this is the absolute worst way for the Authority to remain in control. What Adam Rose is doing, conversely, is spot on. That’s right: Adam Rose honestly is the most likely WWE Superstar to perpetuate a successful genocide. Jericho mocks the Authority with the time-honoured song ‘Na-Na-Na-Na-Na-Na-Na-Na Hey Hey Goodbye’ as they leave the ring.
Michael Cole says he likes the WWE by democracy, and careful, Cole. Democracy is next to People Power…cracy. He says he might get a raise if the WWE fans are in charge, and if we do gain control of the WWE State, comrades, I will ensure permanent detention for anyone who suggests that Michael Cole gets paid more money. Following the WWE Universe’s rise to power, Michael Cole will be first up against the wall.
I Think We’re All Realising Just How Much Emotional Support Ambrose Was Receiving From Reigns And Rollins
Here’s Bray Wyatt, to an oddly negative perception. Apparently his new form of evil is laughing about parental abandonment. I mean…dickish, sure, but evil? He’s up against Sin Cara, and uppercuts him right in the mask. Headbutt and a hard-looking clothesline. Cara gets thrown into the corner, but boots Bray in the face and hits a springboard crossbody. Kick to the head sends Bray reeling; Wyatt ducks a senton from the top rope and cannons right into Sin Cara. Cara’s sent into the corner, and is squashed by Bray, who the suplex-tosses him and does his spiderwalk (Sin Cara was barely conscious and didn’t react, so totally acceptable). Sister Abigail ends it.
Decent. Sin Cara’s offence was pretty gutsy; Bray was still definitely dominant and the spiderwalk wasn’t an invitation to get punted in the dick. 2.5 Stars.
Post-match, Wyatt gets on the microphone and plays councillor. Apparently Dean Ambrose received darkness for Christmas, which is a cool-sounding present. He keeps yelling ‘let me fix you, Dean’, and apparently Ambrose doesn’t care for the implication that he needs to be spayed and/or neutered, and approaches the ring. Brya slips out of the ring, and actually continues to mock Ambrose: that’s relatively new. He yells that Dean is predictable, because he reacts to being taunted like most other superstars. And…holy shit, he actually got into the ring with Dean, who slugs him. Bray ducks out again, and walks away, still on the microphone. Loving this whole thing.
Here’s the Dust Brothers, our tag team champions. And facing them…oh fuck yes, it’s my favourite autocratic dictator and the Bunny version of Winston Smith. Apparently on Main Event, the Bunny proved his loyalty and belief to the Rosebud State by distracting Stardust and allowing Rose to pick up the win. Because it’s not enough in a police state to be passive: one must actively work for the betterment of the state. Seriously, this is accidentally a study in dystopian politics.
Rose locks up with Goldust, who runs the ropes before getting hip-tossed. Rose doesn’t tag in the Bunny when asked, and Goldust takes control, tagging in Stardust, who hits hard and fast before tagging out again. Tag Team Champs on the offence right now, but Rose punches his way out of a headlock; he runs the ropes until he and Goldust run into each other.
Stardust and the Bunny tag in, and the Bunny kicks the hell out of Stardust. Rose wants the tag, but the Bunny goes up top, only to be distracted by Adam Rose’s tag-wanting. He eventually dives onto Stardust, who manages to get his knees up and hit…whatever we’re calling that finisher. Adam Rose could not give less of a shit as the Bunny gets pinned.
Very glad we didn’t feed the Champs to this storyline, as much as I love the thing itself. Also nice to see Rose actually wrestle on one of these shows as opposed to just dancing with his drug-induced spirit animals. 2 Stars.
Oh shit, I think the Bunny’s going to Room 101. Although as I’ve decided that this is more of a Brave New World thing, I think that means he gets sent to a colony full of people also unable to adjust to Adam Rose’s Rosebud State. Or has an orgy and hangs himself, possibly. Actually, he just gets Party Foul’d by Adam Rose, and 1984 would be a way better book if Room 101 had just contained Adam Rose.
The Rosebuds are dancing again, because they want to disassociate themselves from the Bunny and show their loyalty and fervour for the Rosebud State. JBL denounces the Bunny as a ‘bad egg’, because Adam Rose owns the media. Does writing this make me a revolutionary?
Dolph Ziggler is backstage with Not-Renee, and they look back at the really shitty month that our Intercontinental Champ has had, although that includes moments of him slamming a cage door against Kane’s skull. And Stephanie McMahon’s very-badly-acted ‘surprised’ emotion. Not-Renee asks about him having to defend the title in a Triple-Threat Elimination match tonight against Cesaro and Tyson Kidd, somehow without using the phrase ‘fucking awesome’. Ziggler is quite serious, stating that whatever happens, he’s staying on Team Cena; the clock is ticking for the Authority.
Ryback promo, skipping over his more interesting tweets. And Not-Renee is busy tonight, now asking Ryback if he’s on Team Cena. Ryback says he’s only on Team Ryback; whatever, Treebeard. He keeps chuckling after every sentence, which is already pissing me off. But hell if the guy doesn’t come across as a badass, and that’s what’s really important.
How Is This The Authority Being Evil?
Poor Tyson Kidd gets a jobber’s entrance to go along with his shitty marriage. Cesaro and Ziggler show up, and I’m still charmed by Dolph wearing the belt backwards. This should be an excellent match, considering the elements, and I almost wish I was less drunk (just got back from a family party; nobody doesn’t drink at our family parties). Whiney McNasal announces everyone once they’re in the ring: BIG MATCH FEEL. I don’t know if it’s the beard or the gains, but Cesaro looks hella pumped, brah. My guess, right now, is Tyson Kidd is our first elimination.
As I type that, Cesaro and Ziggler shove Kidd away for daring to interrupt their stare-down, and Cesaro boots Ziggler and throws Kidd. Stomp to Ziggler’s back; Kidd kicks Cesaro and rolls up Ziggler for two. Backslide to Kidd, and everyone trades pinning combinations and do you know how difficult this is to cover? Cesaro clotheslines Kidd; Ziggler dropkicks Cesaro and drops the elbow to Kidd.
Back from the break, Ziggler and Kidd try to suplex Cesaro, who suplexes them right the fuck back. Double underhook powerbomb to Ziggler, followed up by the springboard elbow from Kidd, before he gets gutwrenched by Cesaro for two. Cesaro charges at Ziggler, who dodges (sending Cesaro to blast the turnbuckle) and Fameassers Kidd for two. Ziggler gets crotched onto the top rope by Cesaro, who follows him up and tries for a back superplex. Dolph fights him back down; Tyson hits a dropkick to Cesaro’s back, prompting Dolph to fall into a Tree of Woe and eat another dropkick to the face. T-Bone suplex to Kidd from Cesaro, then an uppercut in the corner for two. Ziggler crossbodies Cesaro from the top, then hits stinger splashes to both men, then a neckbreaker/DDT to both simultaneously!
Tyson is sent off the ropes, but comes back with a spinning neckbreaker for two. He heads up high, but eats an uppercut whilst up there. Superplex attempt by Cesaro, but Ziggler joins him, and…okay, Kidd sunset-flip-powerbombed Cesaro, who superplexed Ziggler. Holy fuck. Tyson locks in the Sharpshooter! Cesaro actually tries to pin Dolph whilst in the hold for two! Cesaro kicks Kidd right out of the ring, then uppercuts Dolph! Kidd springboards at Cesaro, who somehow turns that into a backbreaker for two!
Back from the break, Cesaro drops an elbow to Ziggler, then takes a diving neckbreaker from Kidd, and Ziggler raises the knees into Cesaro’s back. Kidd locks the Sharpshooter in on Dolph, and then Cesaro adds the crossbreaker; Kidd then tries to apply the Sharpshooter to Cesaro, who reverses that into the Cesaro Swing! DDT to a dizzy Cesaro for two! Third ‘This Is Awesome’ chant of the match! Fameasser reversed; he gets thrown into a kick from Kidd, then eats a German suplex for two! Cesaro knocks Tyson to the floor, measures Ziggler, tries to uppercut him, takes the Zig-Zag! Kidd throws Dolph out of the ring and gets the pin!
Kidd celebrates, and then focuses on Ziggler. Baseball slide into headscissors, sending Dolph into the steps. Ziggler’s thrown into the barricade, then Tyson kicks him right in the face for two. Kidd chokes Dolph on the ropes and tries to hit a leg-drop, only to get rolled up for two. Fisherman’s suplex reversed; Zig-Zag countered; spinning neckbreaker hits for two! Fourth ‘This Is Awesome’ chant, in one match. Springboard from Kidd, right into a superkick, for two! Kick to Dolph’s head, and locks in the Sharpshooter again; Ziggler rolls through: Zig-Zag and the three!
Five Stars. No Doubt. Five Stars. Holy shit.
Tense Dinner Conversation In The Kidd Household Tonight
Looks like Natalya and Tyson have their separate interests as a couple. Well…both interests are ‘wrestling’, but they do it separately. And Nat will be facing Layla, the hometown girl seeing as how Paige isn’t here. Nat wrenches Layla’s arm; Layla reverses it and Natalya rolls through; Layla gets a nice pin, but nearly gets put in the Sharpshooter. Punch right to Natalya’s face, and she pays it back. Layla runs into a back elbow, but then immediately kicks Nat in the face to knock her out of the ring. Natalya isn’t moving until the last second: just enough time for me to worry that something went wrong, but does get back into the ring.
Layla scissors Natalya’s neck, then her stomach. Front facelock with the legs wrapped around the stomach, but Natalya powers up, only for Layla to slam the back of her head off the mat. Natalya catches a kick and slams Layla, hitting a kick of her own to the face; Layla kicks her out of the ring again. Natalya takes this as an opportunity to slap Summer Rae and to throw Layla into her before getting Layla back into the ring. She takes a kick, but powers straight through into the Sharpshooter for the win.
Decent and hard-hitting match; Layla has been impressive in the ring lately, particularly the pin attempt in the opening moments. 2.5 Stars.
Backstage, Not-Renee is having a busy night indeed, as he runs into Dean Ambrose; Ambrose says that Wyatt’s playing games, and then Bray’s right there, this new game apparently called ‘beat the shit out of Dean Ambrose’. He Sister Abigails him against the wall and skedaddles. What a card.
Feed Him More
Here’s Kane, about to get eaten alive by Ryback. The Authority is right there with him, and shake hands with the commentators for some reason. I’d actually be pretty happy if Ryback didn’t get involved in the Survivor Series match, and this was his way of telling everyone to leave him alone.
Kane and Ryback lock up, and Ryback forces Kane back; Kane twists Ryback around into the corner, then headlocks him. Ryback breaks out of that, and levels Kane. Ryback goes on the attack, but eats an uppercut and reels enough for Kane to gain the advantage. Clothesline in the corner, but Ryback pays Kane back in kind. Michael is bitching about the Authority, and I really want Trips and Steph to turn to him and say ‘you do know we can hear you, right?’
Suplex attempt from Kane, and Ryback reverses with a suplex of his own, clotheslining Kane out of the ring. Thesz Press to Kane, then a Warrior Splash. Ryback tries to go for the Meathook, but Kane cuts him off with the big boot.
Bodyslam by Kane for two, then an uppercut. Apparently Steph actually asked Michael why he’s being so negative, so they can hear him. Ryback’s thrown hard into the corner, then takes a boot to the face again. Kane tries to choke Ryback, who turns that into a slam, but Kane then reverses the Warrior Splash, getting his boots up. He hits a dropkick to the downed Ryback, still in control. Kane runs into an elbow, and Ryback builds momentum now, hitting a shoulder tackle. Splash from the second rope to Kane; Kane tries a chokeslam and Ryback hits a spinning bodyslam like it was nothing. This time the Meathook connects, flooring Kane hard; Ryback wants to finish it, but Kane slides out of Shellshock.
Ryback clotheslines Kane out of the ring, but the Big Red Machine drags him out there with him, driving him back-first into the apron and then hurling him into the steel post. Kane then picks up a steel chair, which just means he knows, deep-down, he’s a fucking pussy. Steel chair to the ribs gets the DQ.
How many matches has Kane ended in disqualification: either his own, or other people’s? With the possible exception of Jamie Noble and Joey Mercury, he’s the least-threatening member of the Authority; he is definitely the bitch of the five-man team.
Chair assault continues on the outside as the Authority applauds, and then carries on in the ring. Triple H calls Kane over to give him some instruction, which is most likely: ‘hit him with the chair again, Kane! Multiple times!’, so seems unnecessary. Ryback spinebusters Kane, making Trips the wrestling equivalent of a micromanager. Instead of even bothering to hit Shellshock, Ryback just fucks Kane over with the chair, like a boss. He stares down Hunter, daring The Game to get in the ring so he can tear his quad out and feast upon it. Triple H looks him dead in the eye, and that closes the show.
I liked this week. The triple-threat match alone was perfection, and there was plenty else to enjoy. Ryback seems to have picked up where he never should have left off, and I just pray they can keep him away from Cena this time. Nice Divas match too; good show scores nine.
I couldn’t resist writing this; I’m far too invested in this Adam Rose thing for my own good. Well, for better or worse, here it is:
‘You asked me once,’ said O’Brien, ‘what was in Room 101. I told you that you knew the answer already. Everyone knows it. The thing that is in Room 101 is the worst thing in the world.’
The door opened again. A guard came in, leading another person into the room behind him. Because of the position in which O’Brien was standing, Winston could not see who this new arrival was.
‘The worst thing in the world,’ said O’Brien, ‘varies from individual to individual. It may be burial alive, or death by fire, or by drowning, or by impalement, or fifty other deaths. There are cases where it is some quite trivial thing, not even fatal.’
He had moved a little to one side, so that Winston had a better view of the figure that had joined them. He was a tall, muscular man, with long, brown hair falling about his shoulders. He wore no shirt, even though the room itself was, to Winston, bitterly cold, but what was truly unusual about the man was his eyes. Although they were three or four metres away from him, Winston could see the wideness of them; the jittering movement. The fevered stare and fixed grin of a man in the grip of some potent hallucinogenic. He spread his arms out wide, gazing wildly at Winston.
‘Don’t be a lemon,’ he intoned, his grin widening. ‘Be a rosebud.’
‘In your case,’ said O’Brien, as if the man had not spoken, ‘the worst thing in the world happens to be Adam Rose.’
David’s Movie Recommendation: Gangster No.1 is a strange, almost over-simplistic movie. You keep waiting for the twist to happen before realising that there never was one. Maybe it’s the brutal realism that appeals to me, or the fact that Paul Bettany playing a fucking psychopath is hellishly good value for money. Plus, the entire thing’s narrated by Malcolm McDowell, and could actually be a sequel for A Clockwork Orange if you think too much about it. Give it a go.
Tags: Adam Rose, Bray Wyatt, Cesaro, chris jericho, dean ambrose, Dolph Ziggler, goldust, kane, Layla, natalya neidhart, ryback, sin cara, Smackdown, Stardust, Stephanie McMahon, Summer Rae, The Bunny, triple h, Tyson Kidd, WWE