Here I find myself asking the same question I did in my second article. No, not whether Vincent McMahon is bad for business; truthfully it doesn't matter what I think on that topic any more than any other fan at the moment. Because right, wrong, or otherwise, he's part of the moment and one of the reasons we tune in: everyone loves a good heel – just ask Rusev. Although, being fair, I think his biggest selling point is Lana.
Do I regret what I said about him in a previous edition of this column? No. Simply put, I still question some of his practices and plots. However, this particular installment has nothing to do with what I disagree with or agree with as a whole. It has to do with knowing when your time is here and gone.
First, let me say that yes, I know this is about money and shock and awe for the fans. But reviews were mixed on Fast Lane, and that is what I'm addressing, at least in part, when I have to wonder the following.
1) Calling John Cena an "old man" – it was my understanding that this feud between Russia and America had been building for the past few months and at first other than having a Rocky IV vibe – honestly I heard the infamous line: "I must break you," in my head fairly frequently throughout the match. I couldn't help but wonder why finish the match dirty?
So, I did a little research- thanks to fellow staff and once again, Google, to see if there was more to this. Why? Because Hulk Hogan in 2005 was the winner at Summer Slam and we all know The Hulkster was well past his prime; hence the curiosity.
According to what my curiosity tells me, and a web search later, Cena has been involved with not just Gillette, but also with the WGN's Wrestling with Death reality television show, amongst rumored other projects.
Now, to veterans of the industry, as fans, this is no doubt old news; but my overall point is not: is the Champ in heated debates with VKM and his corporation, of course he is. But even a veteran of the WWE like Cena knows when the getting is good and when it's time to move on... So why doesn't the WWE proper? Or perhaps it does.
2) The Monks of Mocking- With the Streak at an end, clearly the atmosphere around it has changed; otherwise why let Bray Wyatt mock it, using a very old and respected entrance of the Undertaker's? Point being not only was that perhaps the best mood setter of the night, but also telling us all that the empire that Vince built does recognize when it must march on – though, as someone who did watch at least that much, in wrestling -The Streak- I do kind of wish they had found a different way to acknowledge this changing of the guard. Was it a great segment? Yes, but mixed emotions for myself. How about anyone else?
3) Bat says go, sledge says stop – Yes, okay, point three was before my second, but I think this part showed why Fast Lane was inconsistent. First Triple H tries to reason with Sting, but anyone else notice the taped hands? I mean, being honest? If you're going to tape up and bring out the arsenal of bat versus sledge then let us see more of a preview than a scared Hunter being muted by someone who hasn't said a word except by his tool of trade. Because in reviewing the transcripts for this piece? I noticed someone say later on essentially: Doesn't the crowd seem underwhelmed? With moments like this – no wonder Fast Lane seemed held up by a little old lady in a caddy. Wrestling With Death might've been a better title if not for copyright laws – because it's clear Fast Lane yielded.
4) Miz TV – Now I admit I did go back this morning and watch the pre-show. And yes, I realize I've been back tracking these points, and besides the growing gulf between Miz and a clearly miserable Mizdow, I noticed Paul Heyman say one thing that echoed back to the attitude era: IT DOESN'T MATTER WHAT YOU THINK! No, Heyman didn't copy Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson exactly – but he did, in essence, say, who cares who wins, my Beast Incarnate (Brock Lesnar), broke the Streak. What can either contenders do to beat that? Well, we'll see. But like I stated in my first column, I can't wait for someone to put that Beast down. Because the Streak deserved a better ending.
But hey, I'm just the Casual Observer, I'm more interested in what you, the Universe thinks about that, and about my big question: if legends, like John Cena know when it's time to move on to greener pastures, when will the WWE learn the same?
Look forward to a healthy debate CO's and thanks for making this Casual Observer feel welcome. You all take this entertainment and sport quite seriously, and that's why I live for your input; to appreciate this industry better as a whole.