Power rankings. They’re sort of dumb when it comes to a scripted presentation of sports. Like, what do you actually base them on? So With Spandex will be bringing you all new weekly power rankings every week, based on whatever we feel like basing them on. Beards? Sound good. Dusters? Oh, it’s coming. This week? The good, bad, and ugly of the world of promos.
10. All of the Smackdown women, but mostly Eva Marie
This promo chain was such a disaster that Eva wins without even saying anything. Alexa Bliss got nerfed and Carmella, who is 70% intro banter, didn’t even get to finish her intro banter. But there is a saving grace: Allow yourself to be seduced, because All Red Everything’s voiceover promo was eternally beguiling. Eva’s modern day Jimmy Hart made you somehow hate this woman even more. How is that even possible? Also it is completely possible that Eva actually thinks a voice in the sky absolutely loves her.
Poor Kalisto. He’s not even doing terrible promos on the brand with a cruiserweight division. I feel bad about including this, because the more we talk about it the more WWE will notice and make it his character. This dude should have been their new Rey, not their new farting Natalya.
8. Stephanie McMahon and Mick Foley
Stephanie got like 10 pieces of new information out in under fifteen minutes. We truly are in a brave new world of wrestling.
7. No Way Jose
Look, I’ve been at this guy’s dance party since Day 1, so Ruthless Aggression Jose’s coming out party promo was pure poetry for me. Was it his 3:16? Of course not. But he made me believe that a guy that loves to have fun with the WWE Universe also loves killing people dead in the ring if they cross him, and that is good enough for me.
6. Dolph Ziggler
“Every once in a while, I steal one. And when I do, I make the most of it.” I love these YouTube Fallout promos, and this one is no different. Ziggler isn’t ranting about being underrated or ignored. He’s just channeling his real excitement about this opportunity at SummerSlam and it’s the most connected I’ve felt to the character since the last one he stole when he saved the company at Survivor Series. Remember that? Still rooting for you, brother.
5. Heath Slater
If Smackdown is really about opportunity, Heath Slater is currently the MVP of the brand. The Undrafted Underdog’s furious reminder of his resume was over with the crowd, viewers at home, and the all important fans in CYBERSPACE. If next week isn’t about Slater just wrecking Rhyno and gunning for the Intercontinental Championship, the Blue Brand’s mission statement is garbage.
4. Khizr Khan
Look. Politics is pro wrestling and this dude took all of his rage, pain, and frustration and poured it into a mic. I would pay any amount of money to see this dude face to face with Donald Trump. Book it, whoever books that. America wants to see it.
3. Sasha Banks
Props to Banks for finding that middle ground between “real person we’re rooting for” and “cool character we love.” She’s open, honest, and emotional and still remembers to be a cocky badass that drives an Escalade to the ring sometimes. Great moment.
2. Brian Kendrick
THE Brian Kendrick’s pretaped CWC promo was pitch perfect. In just a few sentences we knew who he is, why that matters, and why he is fighting. More than that, he made us care about him, and caring about a guy who is wrestling like a vicious, desperate heel is more complex than any moment of this summer’s Shield feud.
1. Matt Hardy
Hi. It is the year 2016 and Matt Hardy is setting the world on fire with incredible promo after incredible promo. Even Jeff Hardy showed more personality here than he has in years worth of being extreme. Again. Brave new world.