Best/Worst: Post-Crisis Godfather
The Godfather is terrible. He’s one of my least favorite gimmicks from the Attitude Era, which I guess is probably the most predictable thing I’ve ever typed. His entry in the Rumble was a total waste of time. Nobody likes The Godfather enough to go crazy about it, all OH SHIT IT’S THE GODFATHER YES I LOVE THE GODFATHER LOL or whatever. Literally any other core member of the Nation of Domination would’ve been a better entry? D’Lo Brown? I’m happy. Mark Henry? I’m losing my mind. Rock? It doesn’t make a lot of sense, but okay, it’s better than the Godfather. I’d even take Ron Simmons stepping in, getting dropkicked out, then standing there for 4 minutes making upset faces while we all wait for him to say “damn.”
That said, I did enjoy the hilariously lazy retcon of the Godfather’s character. I guess in the PG world of WWE you can’t say, “he’s a pimp, children. See those ladies with him? He employs them as sex workers. Traditionally, men in his position are violent and controlling with these women. Watch as he offers sex with strangers in place of a wrestling match!” Now it’s just “he likes to party.” That’s how you explain a pimp to a child. “He’s dressed like that and has ladies with him because PARTIES ARE FUN.”
Best: Daniel Bryan Pulls An AJ
Even AJ called this one:
This was my group’s picks for most adorable moment of the Royal Rumble. Daniel Bryan sneaks up behind Kane and eliminates him, then hits the YES chants. That’s what got me on board. You can preface pretty much anything 19 seconds or longer with YES chants and I’ll like it.
Anyway, this comes back to haunt Bryan, and he ends up getting tossed into the
loving waiting arms of Kane. He begs Kane to put him back in the ring and Kane seems like he’s gonna do it, but just drops him and bails. Bryan is left with an amazing look of sadness on his face, and the Team Hell No will-they-or-won’t-they continues.
This was cute, but I probably would’ve replaced it with with more kicking. And honestly, what was with the pre-Rumble conversation they had about Bryan having a way worse number? You were THREE APART.
Worst: Rey Mysterio’s Ring Gear Keeps Getting Worse
Rey Mysterio’s near look is clearly inspired by Big Daddy V. He’s got the bad tattoos, the baggy pants and the low-cut singlet top. Haha he’s even got the fake contact lenses. Mysterio should give up completely and just start wrestling in pajamas.
I’m glad Rey’s
not on drugs feeling better and all, but whew. I’m not looking forward to his super hero choice at WrestleMania this year. He should show up as Cyborg. He’s already got the shirt and the robot legs.
Worst: The Inevitable, Part 1
Here, I stopped the tape at the exact moment when Ziggler hits the ground, leaving Sheamus, Ryback and John Cena in the ring:
I guess this is probably where the show died for most people. For like a month, people have been asking me, “hey Brandon, what do you think’s gonna happen at the Rumble?” My first response was always, “What do you think’s gonna happen? Rock wins the title, Cena wins the Rumble, Rock/Cena 2 at WrestleMania.” Once In A Lifetime 2: This Time, It Only Happens Once. I think I kept saying it because it was the worst, easiest, most predictable thing. I wanted to be wrong. I wanted to be all, “yeah WWE sux0rz they don’t know the product derp derp” or whatever and just be that asshole who underestimated them.
When John Cena won the Rumble, the chance of Punk retaining fell to zero, and that was that. The inevitable was happening. “Maybe Punk will retain and they’ll do a title change at the Elimination Chamber!” I told myself. “Maybe Ziggler will cash in on Rock or Punk even though his briefcase is for the other title, because they don’t give a shit about continuity and can just say it’s for whatever they want without consequence, because if you call WWE on its mistakes you’re a mark who takes things too seriously.”
So I just kinda took a deep breath, remembered that wrestling is a fake show for babies, and crossed my fingers that the rest of the show would take me by surprise.
Worst Ever: The Rock’s Hard Times Promo
If you ever needed proof that Rocky reads this column and is a diabolical mastermind determined to destroy my brain from the inside and get away with it, because who would believe the Rock would care about a comedy sports blogger, please consult that interview from last night where he somehow manages to top comparing himself to Martin Luther King Jr. by straight-up aping Dusty Rhodes’ Hard Times bit.
If you haven’t seen that, here’s a short piece I wrote about it for AOL FanHouse. It’s a compassionate plea from a man who came up from nothing and made something of himself, asking the fans to come together and support him, because he never forgot the people who put him face to face with the ideal-destroying devil Ric Flair. It was honest, and it was one of those wrestling moments that would last forever.
Remember when David Arquette showed up in WCW, and he was a rich movie star who got a title run because they need to promote a movie, because people who don’t give a shit about wrestling might tune in if they heard about it? Yeah, that wasn’t hard times either.