Regarding Zack Ryder, I’m hoping the front office is now starting to take notice. I think that after Survivor Series, you can’t ignore him. A year ago or so, John Morrison was getting some major attention from the WWE Universe. Now they boo him because he’s not Ryder. And it’s not just ONE arena. If that were the case, I could believe that the office was just thinking one area of the world wants to see him. It’s every arena. It’s every show. I also have to comment on CM Punk winning the WWE
Championship. With his celebration, it really felt like it was Punk’s first WWE Championship title…but it’s his third! That’s what kind of emotion this guy brings to the table, and I hope he gets a fantastic title reign. Alright, are we ready? Let’s get to SMACKDOWN!
The World’s Strongest Limper
Er…I’m not sure I liked this promo by Mark Henry…at all. The only part of this promo that I believed was part of this most recent incarnation of Mark Henry was, “I stand here hurt, but I’m not broken.” Everything else, and I do mean everything else, about this promo really made it seem like the promo writer for Christian wrote this for him. You can’t tell me that you didn’t hear Christian saying this as Mark was talking. Actually, none of this segment really resonated with me. I think the
only part of it I liked was when Henry called Show a loser, and then after the big dramatic pause, the inevitable conclusion of the WMD came about. Damn, that was fast.
Segment Grade: C+
WHAT THE? DANIEL BRYAN VS. MARK HENRY – WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP!
Holy crap, sure I believed it…I was led on, hook, line, and sinker. Did Bryan say he’d stand by his word and cash in the contract at Wrestlemania? Yes, but damned be that, I’ll wait for his explanation. Was it hugely comical watching D-Bryan try to roll Mark Henry over? Yes, but the three count was worth it. Do I think the celebration was accurately portrayed? Yes, and I’ll probably watch it again…BUT THEN…THEN…the biggest crock of (expletive) I’ve ever heard comes walking down the aisle. Not medically cleared? Sure, because John Cena bleeding from the head I’M SURE was medically cleared to compete. Whatever. You want to make that a successful angle? Tell me that Daniel Bryan literally signed the document saying that he
was going to cash it in at Wrestlemania. Tell me that he wrote down, in ink, that his title opportunity was going to be on April 1st. That is MUCH more believable and creates a lot more intrigue than a bogus rule like this. Boo. …also, what Holiday is on Tuesday? I suppose this creates a level of depth to the potential of a Daniel Bryan heel turn…
Segment Grade: C
Justin Gabriel vs. Hunico
I am impressed more and more each time Hunico comes out to perform. I think that without an angle or a mouthpiece, he has the charisma of a saltine, but in the ring, his psychology is actually pretty sound, and his technical ability is a lot more impressive than Sin Cara’s. That being said, we need something else to make us care about him besides the fact that he used to be Sin Cara Negro. I do like the way they are building Hunico up. They’re not giving him squash matches, and they’re not
ignoring him and just sticking him on Superstars. Does anyone else think Justin Gabriel was hurt by this loss tonight? I know I don’t. I wonder what the future holds for Hunico.
Match Grade: B+
The Sisters of Salvation vs. The Chickbusters
With Alicia Fox on commentary, it looks like she’s the next number one contender. Awesome quote: “She has more muscles than Mason Ryan!” Um, clearly this match was used for two reasons: To build the unfortunate break up of The Chickbusters, and to establish Alicia as the next top Diva. To that last point, why in the world would Natalya and Beth stop their attack when Alicia got in the ring – wearing that?
Match Grade: D
Thankfully we got interrupted by Mark Henry. Not so thankfully, Teddy Long just told us that the doctors cleared Mark Henry to compete. You’ve got to be kidding me.
Segment Grade: C-
Dancing Naked Through the Night
Segment Grade: D+
Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler vs. Sheamus and Zack Ryder
Looking for someone to do some research here: Why can’t we use “I am Perfection” anymore? The rest of Ziggler’s theme is exactly the same, but instead of “I am Perfection,” it’s “I’m here to show the world.” What’s up with that? Oh, speaking of quotes, can I just say that one of the best things I heard at Survivor Series was Dolph Ziggler asking who was going to
follow him from the opener. When he came out for the Survivor Series matchup, he said, “Oh, I’M going to follow me!!” Genius. This was a phenomenal tag team match. We had a false hot tag, a good, long damsel segment, and the person I
thought was going to win surprisingly didn’t! The go home segment was pretty genius, with Zack getting the blind tag, and although Sheamus may or may not have stayed in there past the five count, post tag, I think it went down well. Swagger and Ziggler are still pretty effective as a team, but unfortunately, Ziggler is on such a roll as the U.S. Champion that he’s overshadowing Swagger. As soon as Ziggler drops the belt, I think that the Tag Team Championship would really greatly benefit both Swagger and the belts themselves. I definitely took some notes for my MPX Tag Team shot next week. Good match, and perhaps we all will finally get to see Zack Ryder vs. Dolph Ziggler at TLC for the US Championship…that is, unless they’re saving it for the Rumble…
Match Grade: A-
Daniel, I like you, I really do…but stay away from A.J.
Seriously. And the funny line from Barrett is, “Now I’ve seen it all. You’ve got a 14-year old girlfriend.” I think Bryan and A.J. work well as a couple…not as well as The Choice and A.J….but what’re you going to do? Sigh.
Segment Grade: F…because Daniel got a kiss from A.J. …but to be fair,
Ted DiBiase vs. Heath Slater
Sorry, as much as WWE is going to try and build back up Jinder Mahal, I don’t care as long as I don’t understand him. I was a fan of what he said in English, but it’s the cadence of the speech and the fact that I don’t think anyone knew when he was done that drew him no reaction past when he was initially seen. When Jinder referred to everyone as “commoners,” that didn’t even net a response. Speaking of not getting a response, that’s pretty much what this match did. I may have been distracted by the bickering of Cole and Booker, but this match was pretty flat, honestly. Remember when I was
speaking about building Hunico up correctly? Heath Slater’s return match just fizzled. And do you know why I don’t care if Mahal and DiBiase hook it up? Because I didn’t understand a word of what Mahal said, minus the one line in English. I suppose psychology wise, it was okay, with Slater working on one body part, but it lacked enough of an interest to be a good match.
Match Grade: C
Cody digs that…sucka.
It’s the little things that make the difference, and while the lack of a mask is a great difference, the subtle changes in Rhodes’ speech patterns have freshly renewed his character. I believe that sentence was just the slightest bit redundant, but I hope you’ll see what I’m saying. I’m wondering where the Booker T stuff is going, but by mentioning Randy Orton again, it gives me hope that that program isn’t finished just yet. I would think that maybe it’s leading up to old Goldust coming out to
defend his former tag team partner against Cody? Anyone that’s been on Twitter and follows Goldie would know that he’s been trying to get Cody vs. Goldust for Wrestlemania. Hmmm.
Segment Grade: A
Fatal Four-Way: Daniel Bryan vs. Randy Orton vs. Cody Rhodes vs. Wade Barrett
A great match here, with each man getting a chance to shine. I feel a little cheated that we didn’t get to see Orton versus Bryan when the commercial break happened. Also, who else popped for the Doomsday Device? I know I did. I was following this match very closely, looking to see if there was any slight booking of the match that would have given an advantage to anyone, just to find nothing. Really, I should have just looked at the booked match itself. It’s like test taking – you use process of
elimination until you find the best answer. Would a heel vs. heel feud inside a steel cage be at all in the best interests of a live crowd? No. Would Randy Orton in the main event? Yes and no. That’s what surprised me so much. I think I’ve been so jaded by the WWE booking Daniel Bryan to look non-threatening that I thought there would be no possible way that they’d let Daniel Bryan win over the safe pick, Randy Orton. It was shocking, fresh, and new. And to think, Daniel Bryan’s really only been on this push for about a month. He had a string of about two months where he wasn’t even on TV, and now he’s in a Steel Cage match for the World Heavyweight Championship. Anything can happen in WWE, right? I’m not looking for him to win on Tuesday, but wow, what a step for the American Dragon. The finish was great as it opens a door for a Cody/Bryan feud, which would also be awesome. Nobody looked weak in this match, and the internet darling, Daniel Bryan went over. What else could we ask for as an internet wrestling community?
Match Grade: A+
In-Ring Action: B- Did this section feel a bit sparse to anyone else tonight? I suppose we did have five matches, but two of them did very little for me in terms of in-ring work. Heath Slater still isn’t impressing me, and the Divas match was just a plot pusher. I do like what Hunico brings, and I think with the right storyline, he could be a very decent mid card worker. What
happened to the Cousins Colon, though? I don’t know whether I should give the match of the night to the tag match or the fatal four way, but for implications, I’m going to give it to the fatal four way.
Out-of-Ring Action: C Cody was the brightest spot in this category. Really, the opening segment and promo from Henry and Show really killed it. That’s a shame, because usually these two have been spot on for the last few months. And yes, I’m still bitter over the kiss from A.J. to D-Bryan.
Overall: C+ This was actually a fairly weak show from the Blue Crew. Something seemed off from the get go, probably that promo from Henry. I hate giving the show this grade on a night when Daniel Bryan finally broke the ceiling, and Zack Ryder finally seems to be getting noticed, but all-in-all, this wasn’t exactly a strong follow up show off of Survivor Series. I hope they
deliver on their live episode this Tuesday, for that all important Holiday…November 29th….I will be doing this blog on Wednesday as a result.
Outside the Blog Zone
You know what sucks? Not being able to breathe. I’ve been congested and coughing these last few days, and I’ve missed a full week of training. That, my friends, blows. I haven’t picked up WWE ’12 yet, because I don’t want to spend $60 on it. Oh, here’s a good topic that I was debating with some of my friends: Is the Create a Wrestler system in the WWE games too in depth? One of my friends was complaining that it took too long to create a wrestler, and I agreed. When is that in game camera ever close enough for the height of your nostrils to ever be important? Why is there a full color palate for eye colors when you NEVER see your eye color? Those are the kinds of things that I just don’t care for in create a character features of any game. Alright, I’m done for tonight. Until WEDNESDAY, for a very special, non-Holiday Holiday version
of this blog, thank you for making me your CHOICE for Smackdown blogging.