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The Best And Worst Of WWE Summerslam 2011

By 08.15.11

Best: Kelly Kelly Brings Her Candy Cane Worker Boots

After 10 or 70 aborted attempts to create the new Trish Stratus (Candice Michelle, Christy Hemme, Maria, Ashley, Eve Torres, I’m looking in all of your directions … especially yours, Ashley), it looks like WWE might’ve finally stumbled upon it with Kelly Kelly. Of course, I’m using the actual definition of Trish Stratus here. Revisionist history writes Trish as the greatest Diva champion of all time, putting on great matches despite being a beautiful blonde. ACTUAL Trish Stratus is a fitness model who went from god awful to endearingly okay despite the fact that she messed up her finisher 9.9 out of 10 times. Kelly Kelly is starting to become endearingly okay.

I thought Kelly was going to get forearmed a few times and mess up a stink face before she got dropped on her head and pinned, but the surprisingly lucid Kelly channeled her Inner-DDP and put together something bordering on fantastic, at least in the way that exhibits at Ripley’s Believe It Or Not can be fantastic. She pulled off that cool schoolboy in the corner, made her hopping backflip look somewhat realistic for the first time ever (possibly by accident) and even added a joshi-esque RAHHHHH as she ran into the ropes and knocked Beth off the apron. And by God, she did it with FORCE. Kelly Kelly ran the ropes with FORCE. Kelly has been afraid of the ropes since 2006. Watching her head toward a rope has been like watching Indiana Jones in a snake pit, and here she is running and screaming and throwing hands. God bless her. That’s the Trish we’ve been looking for. I haven’t been this excited for a goofy Diva babyface since Candice watched a bunch of Susumu Yokosuka tapes and kept hurting herself trying to elaborately cradle Melina.

Worst: I Can’t Believe It, But Beth Phoenix

Never in my life would’ve I have believed that Beth Phoenix was the lesser pro wrestler in a Kelly Kelly Beth Phoenix match. What happened? Beth seemed like her two match notes were “mess with your new outfit” and “stand there”. Where was the domination? Where was the brutality? The Divas Of Future Past angle has just started, so most of us were thinking there’d be a Glam Slam, a Natalya-filled beatdown and pink lip gloss flowing like blood. What we got was an extended squash, with the tough person we buy as a real pro wrestler getting K2’d into oblivion. Really, what happened?

Best: “Can Somebody Explain To Me Why Eve Torres Is Always Around?”

Michael Cole made me laugh out loud by asking this question, one vindicated by the fact that Eve did and contributed nothing during the Kelly/Beth match. Booker (who gets a standing “best” for his RIGHT THERE IS EVE TORRES, AND EVE TORRES RIGHT THERE IS GONNA GET IT ON RIGHT HERE commentary that does nothing but makes me talk like DMX all night) and Lawler tried the counterpoint of “who doesn’t want to see Eve?”, which I guess is a positive thing for them to try because she IS employed and we’re supposed to like her, but Cole’s deadpan “I don’t want to see Eve” and me raising my hand at home were more important. If Eve wasn’t a loosely-associated part of the Blonde Ladies Storylines she’d have been under the sailor hat popping booty behind Dungeon Master Cee Lo Green.

Wrestling Diva hierarchy is a surprisingly prejudiced thing, but nobody notices because they never hire any ethnically-diverse women who can wrestle. If Kelly Kelly pulls a shady-ass disappointing White Power thing on Alicia Fox nobody feels compelled to speak up, because it sucks, but at least we don’t have to see Alicia Fox. If Kelly was getting championship matches while Mercedes Martinez, Portia Perez, Cheerleader Melissa and Athena were dancing behind Cee Lo? I mean, how would you feel?

Best: R-Truth Is Writing His Own Dugouts

For those of you who came to With Leather through these Best and Worst columns and don’t know me professionally, my big claim-to-Internet-fame is The Dugout, a Major League Baseball chatroom webcomic thing where baseball players curse at each other and have pun screen names. I spent four years doing them for AOL FanHouse (in the long long ago, before the Fantasy Sports Girls came) and do them here, and no, I still haven’t figured out why people pay me for them. Anyway, the way I write a Dugout is as follows:

1. Come up with the worst joke ever
2. Find a really wordy, roundabout way of getting to the punchline
3. Put it on the Internet
4. Refresh for comments
5. Repeat step 4

I take that approach with some aspects of Best and Worst, and while I want to come up with another New Gods-type of thing for R-Truth’s backstage segment where he suddenly becomes managed by “Mouth Of The South” Jimmy Hart, then dismisses him because he said the words “little” and “Jimmy” beside each other in a sentence (triggering the brain fart that sends him into schizophrenic mania) is its own Dugout. It is a terrible punchline (Jimmy Hart is little and named Jimmy, R-Truth hates Little Jimmy) with a wordy, scenic trip to the punchline (I’ve got to think BIG, not LITTLE, JIMMY) put on the Internet (cough, I mean my television) and I want to keep refreshing it and watching it over and over.

I want them to keep doing stuff like this forever. Is Jim Powers’ bloated Tito Santana-looking ass still alive? Bring him in as Big Jimmy.

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