Worst: That Wasn’t A Battle Royal, That Was A Battle Peasant
I think I made the same face as Kelly Kelly as I watched this. At the risk of Best and Worst devolving into a series of lists (and be aware, I am lazy enough to make that happen), here are five things that were terribly wrong with the battle royal. One, they went to a commercial break and came back with the only people you’d pick to win still going at it, meaning they probably could’ve just done a Beth Phoenix/Eve Torres/Bellas four person “over the top rope challenge” or whatever and accomplished the same thing. Honestly, wouldn’t it improve their real sports presentation if they had, I don’t know, A.J. win? Sometimes the Mariners beat the Yankees, you know? Especially in a game where one base hit ends the game. Two, Eve Torres. Three, why do Divas turn into Delirious in battle royals? The bell rings and they just go BAH BAH BAH BAH BAH and turn and jump over the top rope. Melina literally spent more time walking to and away from the ring than she spent in it. She gets paid like 150 f**king thousand dollars a year. Four, if you’re going to tease me with Chickbusters on Raw, at least let me see them walking to the ring and pointing happily at people.
Five … uh, well, I should probably give this one its own thing.
Worst: Michael Cole Heat
You remember that “how is this helping anybody” talking point from the last page? Yeah, I’m going to be writing that on every page because Michael Cole went Full Wrestlemania again, just as I thought he would when he stood on the table and ended up dressing like Triple H last week. Cole crossed the line from “guy you want to see get his” to mentally unbearable by not only failing to be an engaging heel color commentator but by failing to commentate whatsoever. I can understand doing the “Kelly you’re a whore, nobody cares about your division” thing early in the battle royal, but by the time Eve was getting eliminated and Beth Phoenix was making her power run Cole was just yelling over everyone about how cool it would be to do commentary with his hypothetical twin Mickey Cole. This kind of thing might’ve worked on NXT when we had to put up with Maxine and were living in the shadow of Isis The Amazon, but this is your flagship television show. Bobby Heenan hated Hulk Hogan, and you do you want to know why that worked? Because he didn’t indiscriminately hate everything that was happening. Jesse Ventura thought Tito Santana’s name was Chico and made fun of him for picking lettuce, but he didn’t drift off into fantasy manual labor booking where Chico’s lettuce count was off and he gets fired for being unsatisfactory and then Jesse gets put in charge of the lettuce facility and improves production tenfold. Nobody WANTS TO HEAR THAT AHHH
I’ve heard his stupid “I’ve got a job what’ve YOU EVER DONE” radio rant, so I want to phrase it in a way he might understand, should he ever read this: Michael Cole, you can do basically the same thing you’re doing and contribute positively to the storytelling. Just remember, you are not the story. You are a part of it. You can be Donkey, but you can’t be Shrek AND Donkey AND President Vaginafart or whatever the bad guy’s name was.
Best: Beth Phoenix, Destroyer Of Destroyers Of Divas
This week’s Very Best Of Raw goes to the return of Beth Phoenix as a thing. This attractive, physically dominant, talented professional wrestling worker has been standing in the background of your Jenna Morasca-quality Champagne Bashes for seemingly YEARS, doing nothing. Beth powering out the Bella Twins Andre the Giant-style and forgoing the usual rub and tug of the Divas to snatch Kelly by the wig and throw her to her f**king doom was great, and unless the next two weeks feature vignettes of Kelly Kelly traveling to Japan to learn forearms and GAEA Girl dropkicks this will be the end of K2’s storied championship run.
It’ll be interesting to see if they play up Kelly’s congenital insensitivity to pain. There was a moment I’m going to pretend was important where Beth throws Kelly into the guardrail and does her speech and Kelly’s lying there unconscious, but when Beth walks around the ring to leave they jump back and Kelly’s just lying there with her eyes open, seemingly fine, nodding her head at somebody. My theory: Kelly was not hurt by the attack, and simply “played dead” to get Beth to stop hitting her and leave. It worked, and now at Summerslam Kelly’s going to kick out of the Glam Slam at one and break Beth’s jaw with a cartwheel back elbow. It sounds like I’m joking, but that would honestly be pretty f**king outstanding. I’ll give it five stars if they do the hilarious joshi thing where somebody goes up the ramp and then runs down screaming to do something they could’ve done just as effectively standing still.
Kelly also gets a supplementary worst for her pink lip gloss, but I guess that’s a personal preference. I don’t think someone who fights for a living should look that much like Bridget Marquardt.