Greetings and Holiday Salutations Doinks and Doinkettes,
Thanks for joining us this week despite being a somewhat slow week in the wrestling world. The best rounded program this week was Smackdown, so let's take a look at what went on.
Smackdown started off with Big Show being boring on the mic. "Duh, I'm the Big Show, I lost my championship but I didn't want to." Then Mark Henry comes out and tells Big Show to take a week off, and then quit the business, schooling Show how to make being an idiot on the mic entertaining. Then Daniel Bryan joins the party and gives a great promo about how he's got nothing going for him except that he's a very good wrestler, and has the WHWC title. Daniel Bryan got over on Big Show in this segment as surely as if he'd pinned him all over again, with Mark Henry taking some shit from Bryan as well, but not in such a way that diminished his character. The trio of Show, Henry and Bryan is really interesting and kind of funny because the bigger guys seem like they don't know what to do with Bryan.
Later in the show, Henry and Show are in the ring for a match, and David Otunga interrupts to announce that Henry isn't cleared to compete. Pretty good opportunity for the heel Mark Henry to beat on him, right? WRONG. Henry just walks away while the babyface Big Show sucker-punches the lawyer while he isn't looking. Classy. Real classy, pro wrestling.
In addition to the great opening segment, there were two other highlights for Smackdown. The second was a backstage brawl between Wade Barrett and Randy Orton that couldn't be described in any other way but *classic*. Barrett selling the stream from a regular hose like it was a fire hose was probably my favorite part, but the rko on top of the car was pretty rad as well. Also, having Wade Barrett do almost all of the talking for this feud has been a really good idea.
The third highlight was the main event of Smackdown. Dolph Ziggler versus Daniel Bryan. Awesome! And every bit as good as I would hope. Uh oh, here comes Jack Swagger and Big Show, hold up playas! Teddy Long, as he is wont to do, makes the match a tag match. Think this slowed the action down? Negligibly, as the rest of the match unfolds to be as fun and dramatic as the beginning had been.
I didn't catch the beginning of Impact this week, I only saw the second hour. And while it's possible that the first hour could have been the best hour of pro wrestling television ever produced, I can say with certainty that the second hour was not. As a matter of fact, it featured 2 of the worst, most ill-conceived dopey ding-dong things I've ever seen on a pro wrestling show.
Ding-dong number one: Kurt Angle, dressed in an oversized cowboy Halloween costume, goes to James Storm's favorite bar, says "Hey, do you guys know James Storm?" gets the response "Yeah" and proceeds to beat everybody up. The only entertaining thing about this was thinking of jokes that could be preceded by "Kurt Angle walks into a bar..."
Ding-dong number two: The finish of the main event involved Sting setting up Bobby Roode on a table to get splashed by Jeff Hardy from the top rope, breaking the table and getting the pin. The problem with that was that Roode's shoulders were propped up by half of the broken table, making the ref's three count as inane and meaningless as a countout on a guy standing in the middle of the ring. TNA's fucked up a lot of things before, but when you fuck up THE MOST fundamental thing about wrestling, that a wrestlers shoulders must be pinned to the mat for 3 seconds, what is there left to fuck up? Something tells me they'll find something.
Raw was a pretty good show this week, with a few cool things worth mentioning and a few more worth forgetting about. The opening was excellent. Snappy dialogue not just from CM Punk but John Laurenitis as well, setting up the extended main event with interesting stipulations. I was really looking forward to the series of matches, especially since Swagger and Ziggler had been so great in the Smackdown main event, and I know Punk can put on great matches every week. I guess I was expecting Mark Henry to beat Punk and transition to Raw, which would have been disappointing to me, so I was doubly thrilled at the outcome of the match, which will guarantee Ziggler a shot at the WWE title next Monday. I have to say, though, despite the cool finish, I didn't think these matches were very strong.
As a matter of fact, I didn't think there were any strong matches on Raw this week. Cody Rhodes and Booker T was good, I might just be a little bitter about the finish. It was really exciting to see Tyson Kidd on the show, but unfortunately he didn't really do anything unique or memorable. And that's it. Three matches. Well, three finished matches-- there were two more that didn't have a proper finish. R-Truth came back to interrupt Miz's match with John Cena, and Mark Henry interrupted Big Show's match with David Otunga, which I thought was a horrible segment. Mark Henry didn't get revenge, Daniel Bryan came out but didn't do jack, and Otunga didn't get to show off any moves, he had no offense at all. Basically it was a fluff advertisement for Smackdown, but was so watered-down and sloppily put together that it came off as being slightly mocking of them.
I wish I was at my home pc so that I could include a picture of Alberto Del Rio's gaudy wheelchair, and Ricardo with his bow tied neck brace. That segment was hilarious and definitely picked the show back up again. Then the main event takes place, the crowd is going wild, and Kane comes out! The music, the fire, the new mask, whose ass is going to die? Then he gets on the mic and talks. And talks. And talks some more. By the time John Cena comes out, Chicago is almost ready to cheer him, just in the hope that they might see some action. But it's not to be. Kane stops Cena from approaching the ring by using his magic powers to make the ramp explode with fire. (There was actually a split second that I believed he'd legit blown up Cena with magic) Kane tries to make Cena sad, and Cena mopes a little bit and shuffles off. This segment will only have worked for me if Cena appears next week as Kane's disciple of hate. And now I'm really missing Photoshop.
Tune in next week for the return of the Marshall Matters Show! Who will be the mysterious 1/2/12 return? Will Brodus Clay ever make his Raw debut? How long can Daniel Bryan hold onto the WHWC title? What's up with Cole's great play-by-play announcing? How much worse can TNA get?
All will suffer,