Buckle up for one final bottle of wine. We still have echoes of Andre in our heads, The Montreal crowd continues to resemble A Premier League match. We open The Go Home SmackDown Live for Backlash with two announcements from our Goth GM. The first has little consequence right now. Shane McMahon will be off the show for a while, recovering from his participation in the match in Saudi Arabia. Looks like Paige has reason to misbehave down the road, cool! Her second piece of news was more impactful on an immediate level. More on that later.
The Professional Instigator is in the ring for the latest installment of Miz TV. After getting a very heelish pop for reminding the French-speaking audience that he took his French-speaking wife to “Hollywood.” Mike brought Jeff Hardy out, attempting to stir things up by alleging that he is the best IC Champion of all time. Typical of The Miz it was an epic fail with Jeff reminding him how fake his movies and arguments were. God Bless Jeff Hardy. Mike is frustrated. He brings Randy Orton out, trying to save his intentions. The Viper says he and Hardy are cool though. No one tells him when to strike. Even when pointing out the spot that cost Orton against Shelton Benjamin last week, they threw pie in Mike’s face. It is so nice when baby faces are allowed to think!
Did someone mention Shelton Benjamin? The Gopher came from backstage, interjecting himself in the conversation. Correctly pointing out that he defeated Randy last week and received nothing. By this time; all four athletes are in the ring attempting to have a schmoz. Okay Pale Rider, make the tag match. With that piece of business done during the break, we have the first contest of the night. Benjamin was misused the first time he was with the company and he is underutilized now. In either case, I have no good reason for this. It was a coin flip with each team having the edge for a while. The baby faces went over with an RKO and Swanton Bomb. There were no shenanigans until after the bell when Randy hit an RKO on The Charismatic Enigma. A warning in preparation for his shot at United States Gold on Sunday.
I’m guessing this episode was promo heavy thanks to the organization’s insane travel schedule this month. They’re human folks. They have jetlag too. Hold your breath. Let’s see if we can superglue these together. Skipping one intentionally, be patient. Cut to The IIconics being way to happy about beating Asuka even though The Japanese Ace didn’t take the pin last week. PS: I enjoy your work ladies, but you sound like Sexy Koalas and nobody else. Will parrots ever learn not to stick a microphone in heels’ faces? If there is money in asking someone to act like a six-year-old and giving her Gold: There is only money in it once, unless marks are truly sheep.
The next leg of our promo finds Rusev standing with Aiden English. Suddenly. It’s LANA! There is an audible pop and “Lana” chant in the arena. Hey Stanford, she’s over. DO SOMETHING WITH HER! A Rusev Day Shirt never looked better! The Ravishing Russian says something is holding her husband back. Rusev Day and Aiden English are over as well, but I know who wins the coin flip if it comes to that. Our next promo starts with Big Cass headed to the ring. Even though he is not in Montreal, The Long Island Redwood calls out Daniel Bryan. Who comes out to Bolster Cass’ ego? A little French-Canadian person. He takes a beating. Did I mention this is 2018?
This is starting to feel like a Wednesday in Jim Crockett Promotions. We come back from commercial to find WWE Champion AJ Styles being asked about the change made to his defense of Gold against Shinsuke Nakamura at Backlash. Our GM’s most pressing announcement at the top of the show focused on making the next match between them a No DQ thanks to the double count out in the desert and The Con Artists repeated low blows on The Champ. AJ says he’s glad the restrictions are removed. He is ready to finish this. Wait, Samoa Joe? AGAIN? I might be the only person in America saying this. I don’t care. Quit talking and stay healthy. Do both or go away! GASP! Nakamura’s music hits with Joe on the ramp? What’s this? The Samurai coming through the crowd like earlier this month? AJ takes yet another low blow from behind. Why are baby faces clueless?
An awkward baby face promo from The Ladies Division. Charlotte shouldn’t be here. Becky Lynch is having a cow because she got pinned last week, costing Asuka the match. The Rising Sun Mystic tells her not to worry. Charlotte runs Carmella down as Asuka commands: “Avengers Assemble!” Go across the way, and we see Absolution in one place for the first time since The Raw After Mania. Sonya Deville is going full heel here. Saying she expects special treatment. For now, Paige says that’s not how this is gonna work. Mandy Rose has a match with Becky Lynch because both girls went Little Miss Math Class on The Lass Kicker.
Earlier in the night, Shamus and Cesaro were celebrating their new SmackDown Live contracts when The New Day offered pancakes and reminded them they were only on Tuesdays as result of losing The Raw Tag Team Title in the desert. Not surprisingly, The Celtic Warrior was irritated and asked for a fight. Big E stepped up to take him on but was scoffed away in favor of Xavier Woods. Hey look, a wrestling match! The traffic and movement outside the ring enabled Woods to pick up a clean win with a schoolboy.
Clear the decks as recess closes this goofy Canadian roller coaster! This time Carmella actually has to compete. Her apologists need not worry. The IIconics did most of the heavy lifting. After Second Nature landed an outside Moonsault. Then Blondie Circus got a look at real talent and stopped participating. The baby faces looked extremely explosive. This scares me because WWE logic almost guarantees Charlotte takes the loss at Backlash and Carmella gets more false justification for having SmackDown Women’s Gold. Asuka put her submission hold on Peyton Royce to get the tap out. Canada has been arrogantly friendly this time around. Put another way, it was very French. Now, if The Maple Leaf will excuse us. My passengers and I see two steel cages and an empty front row seat on our radar.
Mad Man’s Spinal Tap & 20 Questions
Back to back weeks we see the Mad Man come to play in our sandbox. Does this article go to 11? Are the retread concepts, just hollow nowadays?
Back to back weeks we see the Mad Man come to play in our sandbox! Does this article go to 11?
When you have decades of experience watching the art form, your eyes and thought processes change. It’s the reason my colleagues can break down pending news and angles we haven’t seen yet. Mr. Meltzer made a cottage industry out of it. A ton of people on The Internet are trying to follow suit. Then, there are fans like me. As much as I love twitter, Professional Wrestling fans were never meant to receive “spoilers” every day.
This is NOT a “Back in my day…” thing. My eyes have changed too. However, I am focused more on WWE’s calendar when watching Stamford’s offering. If I think about wrestling. it’s very simple. My suspension of disbelief is gone for very few performers. In fact, I would say it’s gone for most fans. If we know it’s a work, why are scripts and outcomes still based on the assumption that we don’t? If I have seen a gimmick before, I am VERY hard to impress. Make me believe you can beat somebody; and stand out doing so, or I will chew you up and spit you the Hell out.
For those who say I should keep my mouth shut because I can’t perform and never have, I DON’T CARE! Saint Dave gets a pass, and y’all still watch the current product like his lap dogs and clones, despite “knowing’ the outcome? I don’t watch for the outcome anymore. Based on character development and pushes, I can see that coming. Call me a hypocrite and I will play 20 Questions with you. Can you get me to the finish line without looking like an idiot or a laughable copy of someone else?
Su Yung is 5’6’’ish. Marks and sheep world wide are transfixed and petrified? Make up aside, why? She is impersonating three legends with no unique move set and doing it very badly. Without her zombies, can she beat anybody? Mr. Calloway used druids. He was 6’10’’ and did not need them to kick your ass. Mick Foley put himself and you through HELL before using The Mandible Claw. You had no choice but to take it. The Great Muta was arguably the best Rising Sun performer of all time. He had a move set most American fans had never seen before. The Mist was believable in his hands because audience and opponent were spinning trying to keep up with him. Where is Su Yung’s Mysticism? As much as fans love her, there are no OMG moments in her matches, and her gimmick is predicated on them.
She is far from the only example. Twitter went crazy about a month ago because a top name on the indies put something in her opponent’s mouth during a match. Outside of a prison fight, when would this EVER HAPPEN? Why is this necessary? If this is a work, why would any girl allow someone to do this? Tell me why either woman gets hired again without the parrot response? Same question applies to Joseph. Dude ain’t pickin’ up anybody like that in real life. I dare him to pick my wheelchair up with his finish. He would be in traction.
Tony Schiavone is our crazy wrestling fan uncle. Our memories of him when we were kids and teenagers all ROCK! He is without question one of the best to ever call the action. God Bless Conrad Flair for bringing him back to the art form. Among other fun stuff, he now does commentary for MLW. With tongue firmly planted in cheek; I must say, I have a slight problem with him. I understand that it is his job. He continues to put MJF over because?? I get the gimmick. It’s just OLD! He is ripping off The Miz. One look at him, and you can see that. “I have more money than you.” So did DiBiase. And if you did, you wouldn’t need the $50.00 a night you made before Tony started calling your matches because you’d be paying him. Just wait until Mike retires before you go to New York.
Finally, we arrive at the biggest tent. Vinnie’s circus was on The West Coast in The House of Hot Rod & Billy Jack Haynes. Sheep under 25 are now asking a three-worded question. The only help you’ll get from me is to say that he may have been the father of Modern Independent Wrestling. Sometimes, it wasn’t his choice, and he is still fighting demons today.
Back to this week. Didn’t Spinal Tap all stand in the Center Ring around a month ago and do a babyface promo? “It’s our fault. We’ll do better for you. This is YOUR product.” First, I believe Stephanie as a babyface as much as I believe Saint Richard as a babyface. Shut up and go home as a shoot. Second, as big a moron as Vince is, he’s NOT leaving the person carrying the big top out of WrestleMania! Outside of the obvious, Becky’s leg is a work. SHE WAS LIMPING ON THE WRONG ONE ON MONDAY! Seth Rollins is hurt as a shoot. He WASN’T at Monday Night Raw. If Becky wasn’t cleared, she wouldn’t be on either show. So WHY is everybody going apes*** over this?
Sometimes, I can’t tell which group is Spinal Tap?
Is it the group on stage or the sheep who believe what they’re watching? I truly wish this art form was treated more like real competition.
Mad Man’s Consequences Of Sainthood
Does the lineage of Saint Ric need no explanation?
It’s been a while since Mad Man has landed his Sea Duck in our waters. He has a Flair for gold and the bold! Let’s see where this goes.
Let’s see if I remember how to do this. The Internet Wrestling Community has not seen this from me in months. Something BIG had to happen to get me out of hiding.
I’d say this week at Vinnie’s Circus certainly qualifies. If you’re expecting me to wax poetic about the dudes, take some Nyquil and go back to sleep. The Royal Rumble is both brilliant and flawed at the same time. And yes, it is about effing time the ladies got their shot to steal the show. Although, it can be quite successfully argued, they do so on a nightly basis already. All did a fabulous job last year. Including my girl; Lady Banks, going well past an hour over two nights. Drawing The Shawn Michaels Slot at #1, And then, making a beeline to the ring for a nose-to-nose promo with The Female Muta, Asuka.
The Female Dragon had two words echoing through Philadelphia to kick off Monday Night: “I’M READY!” Those who saw the full confrontation know she was. Who was her opposition in the desert again? The thought of The Rumble being flawed is not new. Especially when its ultimate goal is taken into account. Win the damn thing and Main Event The Showcase of The Immortals! Wait, what did I just say? Back to that shortly.
Blemishes in the execution of this concept make their first appearance innocently enough. The victor in this contest is not based on who participates in it. The Champions headed into WrestleMania dictate the finish. What results from algebra like this? Simple, in most years over 80% of the field is background noise. Most of the time, smarks and sheep alike have a pretty good idea who’s headed to Mania. Overwhelmingly, we don’t mind as long as we get a great match. This changes when the feminine equivalent of Mike Tyson shows up on Vinnie’s doorstep, signs a convoluted contract, and just might bail after the biggest show of the year. Storyline and logic; what little there is in this art form we love, take a beating when Vinnie says Tyson MUST face Holyfield before she runs off to have kids and turn into Brock Lesnar.
What the Hell does he do with the Female Connor McGregor?
The BEST organic baby face in the industry this decade. He turned into Helen Keller on Monday Night. No, you little prick! I am in the wheelchair. You are not disabled! Did he see or feel the crowd in Phoenix? I certainly did. In fact, my neighbors knocked on my apartment door to ask if I was alright. That’s how loud I was. Vince, you haven’t had an honest crowd reaction like that in 20 years, and you wanna pollute it? “Jesus, she wasn’t supposed to be here. You mean these fans AREN’T sheep?” Don’t worry Vince, they’re still sheep and this is still all about Flair and McMahon, DAMMIT! For those laughing at me and saying it’s a work; guess what? It doesn’t have to feel like a work!
I started feeling like something was different about Professional Wrestling in the late ‘80s, when nobody could kick Ric Flair’s ass and get rid of him. First switch of NWA Gold I remember? Ronnie Garvin taking out Flair in Detroit, 1988. As an eight-year-old, I was hardly thinking about math. Why does this matter? Garvin had The Gold six weeks. He had one Title Defense at the end of that window, against Ric Flair. Guess who won? Everybody does cartwheels over his trilogy with The Dragon in 1989, not me. Don’t get me wrong, phenomenal matches, but Ric Flair was always walking out with Championship Gold. Hey Ric, the art itself was a work. Why show us The Gold was too? Spanning from 1984 and Kerry Von Erich to 1993 And Barry Windham, Ric Flair was GIVEN no less than five runs with NWA Gold or its equal because he was Saint Richard Flair isn’t the only idiot in the modern art. During his last holy act with Ricky Steamboat, Vincent Kennedy McMahon walks into a New Jersey courtroom and gigs the business hard way. Exposing it simply because he doesn’t wanna pay taxes on an authentic sporting event. Excuse every child under ten at the time? THANKS VINCE!
Two years later, WWF Gold was held up. How does he deal with this? First, let’s bring Ric Flair in because those in charge of WCW were absolute MORONS! Wait, Vinnie can’t have Hulk Hogan pinned in 1992. “It’s okay, we’ll put Gold on the line at The Royal Rumble. Winner gets The Strap!” Awesome, a boatload of great performers! Did ANYBODY really think Ric Flair wasn’t winning this match? HELL, Hogan pulled Sid Justice out from the floor! At least Flair won in 1992. Flash forward almost three decades. If the concept is, “Winner gets choice of Champion at WrestleMania” Why is Sid Justice going to Main Event Mania FROM THE FLOOR? Hey ass****, if you NEED Tyson/Holyfield, do the Bret/Luger finish! Becky WON the match! Here’s an idea, every televised event from here to Mania is held in an empty arena until we are given a collective Heimlich Maneuver to expel Ashley from our systems. The WWE Universe would never do this because sheep love this circus. If this stands, The Women’s Royal Rumble has jumped the shark just two years in. Vince, we know it’s a work.
Why must you insist on making it THIS! Give Asuka to Ashley. You don’t need to verify Charlotte Flair’s Sainthood. Sasha Banks has seen it three times.