Best: It ain’t Passions, but it’ll do
Yeah, I must be in a good mood, because I’m about to best the heck out of a segment that is nothing but Sting and Hulk Hogan talking. I know. I KNOW. But this really does further play into my opinion that the saga of Hulk Hogan is the most interesting storyline on television right now.
After the heartfelt (more acting! Yay!) pleas from Bully Ray, Sting acquiesces to attempt to convince Hogan to be present for his daughter’s wedding. He does it in the middle of the ring, because wrestling, but not before attempting to get the crowd hyped up as much as possible. And I don’t hate it. I’m pumped! I’m excited! Let’s do some convincing and then marry some people! Hulk’s General Manager pyro goes off, each of us wonders why we don’t have pyro go off everytime we walk into work, and then the real drama begins.
I loved this for a few reasons. The first, obviously, is that during the course of this conversation, Hulk pulls out his phone (yes!), waves it around wildly (even better!) and then talks about “the social media that I know nothing about” (best!). Combining Phone!Hulk and Older Dude Who Doesn’t Understand Technology!Hulk is a stroke of brilliance, and I really hope this leads to a segment wherein young whippersnapper Kenny King teaches the Hulkster how to use the twitters and upload his daughter’s wedding photos to Facebook.
Pathosmania is running wild as Hulk responds to Sting’s assertions that this is silly, as Bully has proved reliable and steadfast in the past, for Sting, Hogan, and Brooke. Well, except for that time he pointed to a buttprint to prove that he wasn’t involved with Hogan’s daughter. But whatever. Hulk reveals that “the social media” has been telling him not to trust Bully Ray. It’s interesting – it’s almost as if, in this case, social media transcends a mere tally of hashtags and followers, and almost becomes the Iago to Hogan’s Othello. Obvious race and sexual implications aside, someone whispering and insinuating until they’re no longer an antagonist, but rather mirroring the protagonist’s deepest fears they weren’t even aware they had? When a physical adversary becomes the most dangerous and effective because they have transformed into your innermost thoughts? “And what’s he then, that says I play the villain, when this advice is free I give, and honest…?” Yeah…kinda sounds like the Internet to me.
Hogan further reveals that when he’s around Bully Ray, he gets a feeling, a vibe, something is off. Something that doesn’t sit right with Hogan and he refuses to accept it at face value. Now, I can see where he’s coming from. In the past he’s exulted Bully as one of his most trusted and true companions in this business. Bully Ray’s unexplained need for secrecy led to betrayal by a valued friend and his only daughter in an industry where trust can’t and shouldn’t be taken lightly. But rather than confront his feelings and attempt to make peace with his daughter and her love interest, he meditates on the betrayal, lying to himself that this is how it has always been, that he’s never trusted Bully. He ends all of this exposition by reminding Sting that “I always do the right thing.” His internal struggle is just as real as the conflicts existing in and outside of the ring, and I was deeply engrossed in this entire segment.
Best: Referee Hot Pants
I know I didn’t get to write about this past PPV because of my work schedule, but I can assure you that you would have gotten a very extensive paragraph about the Knockouts match. Spoiler: It would have been a worst, because my god, Velvet Sky really is terrible. Velvet Sky got the pin, but as Gail points out to Taryn “hotpants” Terrell, the fall shouldn’t have counted as her foot was under the rope. Gail Kim gets her rematch, pins Velvet Sky, but lo, Sky’s foot is under the rope and Terrell refuses to count it. As she points out to Gail, she did it once, why would she do it again? Velvet Sky gets her contendership, and Terrell gets a purpose other than short shorts.
Best: Gail Kim
See above under King, Kenny.
Best or Worst, who can tell: Dixie Carter emotes to Brooke Hogan
And here comes Dixie Carter, answering the question no one asked: Is it possible to have deader eyes less acting skills than Brooke Hogan? They’re both like Coraline’s Other Mother and Other father – their mouths are moving, they’re saying things, but they have dead, button eyes and are creepy as f-ck.
Best: Team MECHA SHIVA
So, I totally had a bunch of stuff prepped to describe how Aries and Roode became TEAM MECHA SHIVA at Genesis, however members of the 3MB did it on Raw, so Brandon got to claim it for his own (http://withleather.uproxx.com/2013/01/the-best-and-worst-of-wwe-raw-11413/4). No big. Just know that it happened, Team MECHA SHIVA makes me way happy, and Austin Aries probably knows way more Sanskrit than Heath Slater.
Aries and Roode go back and forth, in what should have been dueling Rodney Dangerfield impressions, claiming that no one respects them for the great wrestlers that they are. Then, as Christopher Daniels did earlier, Aries lets another nugget of truth drop: it seems that TNA has taken a step ten years in the past. Jeff Hardy, RVD, Devon, Chavo – all current title holders. I would also add in Christian York and Kid Kash existing as well, but hey, whatever, they don’t have all day. I may not agree with everything he says, because my recent enthrallment with Bobby Roode is still just that – recent, but goddamnit, just put the belts on these guys already because…
Worst: Chavo and Hernandez interrupt MECHA SHIVA
Normally this would just be “Shut up, Chavo,” and I would move on, but Aries and Roode decide to insinuate that the current tag champs are the caterers, because lol Mexicans.
Sigh. Whatever. Keep the belts, Chavandez. Aries, Roode….I am disappointed. You’re better than that. Now stop being weird and racist because we’ve got a wedding to get to, AND I AM SO EXCITED.
Best: Hulk Hogan…again….?
This is so good, and I get the feeling that this wasn’t really a stretch for Hogan. The THIS BUSINESS count was excessive, but man…look at Hogan giving me all of these feelings. So good.