Hey guys, welcome to my latest Smackdown review! I uh, I didn’t like this one so much.
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On we go! If the skyyyyy turns blaaaack it don’t matter…
Worst: That’s Not How Real Estate Works. This Isn’t How Anything Works.
Smackdown kicked things off with some hot moping action with Big Show quiver-chinning through a recap of his woeful last month, and then Triple H came out and revealed he had bought Big Show’s house, which Big Show responded to with a look of surprise. Uh…what? Listen, I know wrestling exists in a weird little bubble and WWE assumes none of their fans have the smarts or resources to purchase property, but come on, unless you’ve spent your entire life chained under the basement stairs with no knowledge of how human society works, you know you can’t just buy a person’s house without them knowing.
Also, hey Big Show — you know your boss isn’t allowed to call your house and talk to your wife about your wiener, right? Not even pro-wrestling bosses! Also also, now that Triple H owns your mortgage, he pretty much has to keep you employed so you can make payments or he’s out hundreds-of-thousands (or possibly millions) of dollars just for the sake of being a dick in some random Smackdown segment.
I’m usually not in favor of WWE acting like Smackdown doesn’t exist since, well, I still have to watch it and all, but yeah, I’m pretty cool with pretending this opening segment never happened.
Best: Okay, Maybe I’m Coming Around On This Ryback/Heyman Thing
I haven’t been that into the whole Heyman/Ryback thing because, well, Ryback isn’t really any good, especially as a replacement for Brock freakin’ Lesnar. But I dunno — Heyman has put a Herculean amount of effort into making this thing work over the past couple weeks and I’m almost starting to buy it.
And yeah, even my bitter Ryback-hating heart warmed a bit when he clotheslined R-Truth’s head off then yelled “YOU TRIED TO BULLY ME” at his decapitated skull. Ryback not only hating bullies, but thinking he’s being bullied is the next step up the absurdity ladder this thing needs to take.
Also, another minor best for Curtis Axel’s appropriately sad “beatdown” on R-Truth after the match. I put “beatdown” in quotes because he spent 5-minutes carefully rolling up the sleeves of his oversized Sears dress shirt, hit Truth with a single clothesline, then backed up the ramp looking SO SATISFIED. That was it. Way to go Beastly, way to go.
Best: Del Rio’s Adorable Threats
I can’t help but enjoy Alberto Del Rio’s goofy “still not entirely grasping English and American culture” threats. I like to imagine he spends most of his time backstage with a notebook and furrowed brow preparing for his backstage interviews.
“Wait! RVD just used a trash can on Fandango! Sí, sí, there’s something there! Whaaat if…what if I say I’m going to throw RVD in a trash can? Then take the trash can to the garbage dump? Also, maybe I could call him a perro! Oh, sí! Alberto, you’ve done it again! Ricardo! Come look at the promo I wr–oh, right. Wistful sigh…”
Oh, yeah, by the way, RVD and Fandango had a match somewhere earlier on the show. I’m sure you understand why I didn’t bother recapping it.
Worst: WWE Doesn’t Even Understand What Bullying Is
Between Be A Star and the Ryback stuff, you’re likely to hear the word “bully” used a minimum of around 50 times on your average WWE program, but I don’t think WWE actually knows what bullying is. They think it’s backstage beatdowns, tuna salad in the ear and the damned numbers game. Most of the time bullying doesn’t involve anyone being physically assaulted — for most people being bullied just means somebody marginally more powerful than them making them feel like stupid, useless crap.
I mention this, because good God, JBL and Cole bullied the s–t out of poor Damien Sandow on Smackdown.
Damien Sandow, who won the Money in the Bank briefcase on a fluke and has been barely a half-step above a 3MB member ever since comes down to do guest commentary and the whole time JBL and Cole are, “HEY, HOW ‘BOUT YOU CASH THAT BRIEFCASE IN RIGHT NOW? DO IT NOW. DO IT NOW, IT WOULD BE FUNNY. CAN I TRY ON YOUR JACKET? HA HA, NO, YOUR JACKET IS UGLY, DO IT NOW LOSER.”
Sandow of course gives a million legitimate reasons why it would be completely stupid for him cash in his briefcase in the middle of some random episode of Smackdown, like, oh I don’t know, the fact that he’s wearing a full suit, but the announcers just keep hectoring him. By the end of the segment he’s just clutching the briefcase, looking like he’s about to cry and being all “I dunno, maybe I’ll cash it in, I dunno” just to stop the harassment. It was genuinely awful.
Best: Alberto Del Rio vs. Dolph Ziggler
What wasn’t awful was the match the announcers opted to mostly ignore in favor of giving Damien Sandow purple nurples. I’m still not entirely over my ADR vs. Ziggler fatigue from earlier this summer, but at least it wasn’t another goddamn Del Rio/R-Truth match. Also that flapback/armbar finishing bit was pretty badass. Nobody’s better at making Del Rio look like a killer than Ziggler.
Worst: I Refuse To Fall In Love
Ooookay, so Los Matadores. They showed up on Raw with their bouncin’ mini bull and my brain immediately went, “Yeah! New favorites!” because I love things that are stupid, but no, I’m not going to let it happen. I’m not falling for you Los Matadores.
These WWE comedy characters just never go anywhere — they can’t go anywhere. You can’t do any sort of serious storyline with the fake bullfighters or Earl from ToeJam & Earl or the guy with a snake for a hand, or the ballroom dancer and at some point you have to get at least semi-serious. So these guys are stuck doing the same thing every night, beating guys at a certain level and losing to anyone above that.
So yeah, I know you’re all on a new stupid gimmick high right now, but trust me, you’re all going to f–king hate that little bull in a month or two. I’m getting out ahead of the curve on this one.
Worst: We Talked About This…
I thought we agreed no more Renee Young/Paul Heyman interview segments. At least get Paul to back up out of the poor girl’s personal space and stop spitting in her face whenever he enunciates the work “Punk”. Ugh.
Best: Rock A Bob!
Something ironic but too dark to make an actual joke about — various WWE Divas wearing breast cancer awareness shirts over their obvious implants, which can interfere with detection keeping women from becoming aware of cancer in their own bodies. Uh, yeah, let’s go back to talking about wrestling.
I’m not as enthusiastic about Brie Bella’s improved ring skills as Brandon, and she’s still distressingly thin and unhealthy looking, but that said, this is now two shows in a row featuring pretty solid Brie Bella matches. Also, apparently now that Brie has become a competent wrestler with an actual finisher, her once-signature rear chin and arm lock with accompanying ASK HER REFs has been passed down to Aksana.
Speaking of Aksana, you rock that bob…
Worst: Those Loser Fingers Would Be Appropriate Now Brie
After Brie’s match AJ comes out and is all, “Your fiancé is a goat-faced goat with a beard and your baby will also have a beard and be hideous!!”
Excuse me? This from the girl who mooned over Daniel Bryan for six months, during which his transformation from baby-faced nerd to mythical faun-man began? Is there anything that screams “not over it and really pretty sad” more than a lady going on about how their ex is so totally unattractive? You deserve all the forehead Ls you have coming at Battleground AJ.
Oh, and I’m not even sure what to think about AJ’s “he’s not going to spank the baby, he’s going to spank you” line. Hot? Gross? I just never thought “afterbirth covered sexy spankings” would be something I’d be forced (forced!) to imagine when I sat down to watch this PG wrasslin’ show.
Worst: I…I Don’t Understand
So, Big E. Langston lost to Kofi Kingston in a minute on Smackdown. DON’T ASK ME, I DON’T WRITE THIS STUFF. Then things got worse.
Worst: Follow The Buzzards…
…to Smackdown where my enthusiasm for The Wyatt family finally died!
Bray Wyatt has been coasting on “He was really good on NXT!” cred since being called up to the main roster and, for me at least, that cred has finally dried up. I dunno, maybe he invested his NXT cred in Big Show’s strip mall, but since showing up on Raw he’s…
a) Never had a good match.
b) Never cut a promo that led to anything constructive or interesting.
c) Started feuding with Kofi Kingston.
This was the second show in a row when the lights went out and Kofi was left alone in the spotlight doing his Ryu Super Street Fighter II stance, and Bray Wyatt just sat there and cut a promo and then did nothing to him. And man, this promo was a stinker.
“You are no hero, I said to the man, just a facade. Yet another shining example of a decayed generation. You don’t even know it, but your laws have failed you, and on this Sabbath I promise you, the first will fall.”
Huh? Are you confused Bray Wyatt? You’re talking to Kofi Kingston — you know, the black jumpy guy. What laws have failed Kofi? Well, aside from the one that doesn’t permit you to keep a WILDCAT within city limits. If this kind of drivel came out of Kane’s mouth, we’d all rightfully roll our eyes and reach for the fast forward button. If Bray Wyatt is going to be the new Kane, he should at least be held to his standards. The standards of Kane — I’m not setting the bar too high here Bray.
Worst: Big Show Handicap Matches
Big Show handicap matches are probably my least favorite all-too-regular WWE occurrence. They’re the most counterproductive, frustrating things in the world. If a new stable or tag team is being built up well and starting to get over, you immediately have to start living in fear that they’re going to be stuck in a handicap match where they all have to bounce off Big Show en masse like ineffective Agent Smith clones.
And that’s exactly what happened on Smackdown! For 10-minutes Big Show swatted around the unstoppable, unbeatable Shield and reawakened killer (and World Title contender) Randy Orton like they were children. Eventually the bad guys had their fill of humiliation and swarmed Show, but even then he fought them off for another minute before finally succumbing to a spear and the triple powerbomb.
You know what? I’m pretty cool with pretending this entire Smackdown never happened.