Best: Beer Money 2: Beer Harder
Again…really? This is a thing I’m into? What is happening to me today?
Let’s review the facts: James Storm hates Gunner, consistently wishes him immense physical harm. He correctly points out that no one would give a sh-t about Gunner had he not brought him on as a tag team partner, and Gunner didn’t even say thank you. He reaffirms his commitment to keeping the Sad in Sad Dad. Now that Kurt Angle is back, Bobby Roode can stop being the seizuring bald guy who’s just so mad and just slightly coherent, and gets to seem more like the asshole Bobby Roode who forced me to love him. Also, he says “about” like I say “about!”
While I don’t believe that hitting the reset button and making everything go back to the way it was is the very best idea (unless the way it was is bring back Joe Park forever), I just really like confident, unapologetic nature of the both of them, I think. There’s a big difference between the smarmy greasiness of MVP and his Messiah complex and James Storm wishing that Gunner and his entire family would just die already. Magnus went from the drizzling sh-ts to King Sh-t just by owning the fact that he’s a conceited jackass. Ethan Carter III has relied on nepotism to get him this far, but he’s so charming in his utter dickishness that he’s managed to move on, and turn his family connections into one part of a multi-faceted character. What I’m saying is I like my heels like I like my coffee: unsweetened, about an inch of cold soy, clad in well-tailored blazers and familial deathwishes.
The last two are really hard to order at Starbucks.
This brings us to a really good point. What exactly is the purpose of Gunner? I know I am wont to make dismissive wanking motions in his general direction, but…what’s his deal? Every bit of “personality” he has relies on other people. Sure, he’s the go-to guy when you want to whip a Southern crowd into a patriotic frenzy at a house show, but literally any American roster member (or Eric Young???) can do that with a big flag and tertiary knowledge of conservative political rhetoric.
All of Gunner’s character development relies heavily on other people. James Storm as his tag partner. James Storm as his supportive best friend. James Storm as his unsupportive ex-friend who wishes he had died in the war. Sad Dad. James Storm vs. said Sad Dad. I mean, he’s supposedly a modern-day Viking, but what does he, you know…vike? He’s just got a beard. That’s it. Anything that’s identifiable with his character orbits around him, controlled by other people.
I’ll be forever grateful for him bringing Lailman into my life (it’s funny because Lail is his last name, and it sounds like mailman, and dad humour is a precious commodity), but man, Gunner…that guy sucks.
Worst: I can’t make gifs
But I assure you, if I could, I would make a gif of Bully Ray gently elbowing that table and then laugh at it forever.
Worst: Get it? Pie? Because he wants to f-ck his mom?
While I’m happy that we’re not focusing on the insanely uncomfortable aspects of showing that Samuel Shaw is a violent sexual predator, this is…better, I guess? But not great? Just because someone said Norman Bates in response to the person who said Patrick Bateman in the writing room’s brainstorming session doens’t mean you have to go through with it. It’s hacky and kind of gross, but again, it’s better than what it was.
The thing that bothers me the most, however, is that through all of this – the jerkoff mannequin, the assault, the creepy nightvision in the bedroom of one of Shaw’s multiple residential locations – THIS is what it takes for a cameraman to stop and say “naw, this is f-cked, I’m outta here”? …really?
I guess between the Knockouts tweets and this, we’ve discerned that the creepy bastard was the camera guy this whole time.