This show doesnt look, on paper, to be anything special. There’s not much hype going in, the undercard is more layered than most but looks nondescript, all in all it looks like one of those skipable shows. So did it live up to its (non)promise? Only one way to find out.
I like a PPV that starts out with R-Truth. NO MUSIC! Dont know about stealing Vickie’s gimmick, but whatever, him having no music is badass. This was such a fun promo, bitching about a parking space just because, well, he can. Plus the return of LITTLE JIMMY. This guy is just so hot right now. Match was good too, a fun little opener. Truth as a heel works in the ring, after all. The final minute or so leading to the finish was cool. And having a heel go over in such a clean, decisive manner was so startling, but refreshing and certainly the right result. The water bottle stuff after the match ruled. Truth needs to get the next shot at Cena, he’s on another level right now.
Zeke vs Barrett was light years better than I expected. Seriously, this was a perfectly fine match for a giant lug and a guy who cant carry lugs yet. I loved that they countered the ‘run around the ring then the heel takes over when face rolls in’ spot. And the bodyslam bit was so cool, the way he got the crowd so into it after they couldnt care at all was awesome. This was going so well I was actually upset when they did the DQ, even though I knew it was coming. I’m glad this continues but to be honest I never need to see Corre beat up Zeke again.
I missed Nexus Acting backstage. Thank God. Nexus, who cares?
Sin Cara vs Chavo was, unfortunately, a let down. It was fine, I mean its not like it was a bad match or anything, but it wasnt all that good either and it was nowhere near the showcase for SC it should have been. It was actually the worst he’s looked so far. Chavo f*cking SUCKS. Newsflash. No idea what was going on with the finish either. Having said that, there was still enough flips here to make it worthwhile. The guy seriously looks so cool when he flies around. I hope they dont give up on him, you cant expect anyone to set the world on fire with Chavo f*cking Guerrero.
At least Alberto got to appear on the show. His absence from the card was conspicuous. Loved the line about illegal Canadian immigration. And Kane coming out and mentioning the Rapture to OH GOD ALBERTO’S FACE made this whole thing worth it. Seriously, ALBERTO’S FACE.
Tag title match was also, staggeringly, not bad at all. Dudes were chanting for Punk before it started so he tagged out and said “you gotta wait!”, which was awesome. Some dude from the Board started a “Batista” chant too. Anyway, like I said, a shockingly fine tag match. Punk got in his Macho Man tributes with the tape, the finger wave and the diving elbow attempt. Right result too. Nothing to complain about here, which is ahead of the curve when we’re talking the New Nexus.
I have to admit, I didnt hate the Capitol Punishment vignette. I thought it was clever, and the right kind of topical. I will, however, kill somebody if they go as overboard on the political commentary/Obama bashing/parodying comedy~~ as it appeared they would here whenever they mentioned it. Just…no.
Women! This turned out…quite lame actually. I so wanted Kelly to win here to further the angle, and instead we just get another Bella Twin finish and no Kharma. This was all a bit…nothing. It felt like just a placeholder segment until they got back to the story on TV, which makes no sense because a title match on PPV should be a part of the story, no? Disappointed.
Orton vs Christian. I have to say, I’m hella pissed off about this because I missed the last 5 minutes or so before the finish. I’m going to have to watch it again. But from what I saw this was just so awesome. Just excellent work. Christian is just something else in terms of working a match, and he and Orton work astonishingly well together. I must see if they ever worked with each other in 2004/05. Loved the counters from the SD match, and the finish was just a glorious piece of work. It was awesome how into this the crowd was too, as well as being into Christian. And thankfully no heel turn. I’m going to cry if/when he eventually does. Just top notch stuff all round here.
I was so dreading Lawler vs Cole again. Sitting through the video package was excruciating (as was, by the way, Cole’s commentary all night before this). But this was seriously fine. If they had done this exact match at WM it would have been almost perfect. King punches Cole in the face, Cole trips up and gets heat for about 25 seconds, then King gets up and punches the crap out of him more and wins clean. HOW HARD WAS THAT DOUBLE DOUBLE E?! Honestly. Post match with EVE VINDICATION, plus JR and then the Bret Hart surprise was also pretty fun. So, its done. Done as a dinner. So please dont just put him back on commentary tomorrow, for God sakes.
Cena vs Miz…well. I can imagine 95% of people on the internet hating this vociferously as an exercise in SuperCena. I didnt mind it so much. It wasnt in the same league as Cena/Orton, but it was the same style of match and I appreciated what they were doing. I actually like how they now use I Quit to have a totally different style of match to normal. The main fundamental problem with this, and any of the Miz matches to be honest, is that Miz is not believable as a main event asskicker, let alone being a guy who can beat Cena in an I Quit match, even 2 on 1. You couldnt believe a word out of his mouth, and you couldnt believe a single ‘nearfall’, because there’s no way Cena submits to this goof. And I feel bad for the Miz, its not his fault, but thats the reality, and it killed a lot of the suspense one allows oneself to have.
That notwithstanding, I thought the ‘match’ itself was fine. I enjoyed the 2-on-1 angle as something different, as well as something to make Cena selling for 20 minutes somewhat believable. I really loved the callback to Cena/Orton with the kendo stick spot. And I liked Cena’s selling through all of this. Its a hard sell for him to get his ass kicked by Miz for half an hour, but he was selling it. The kid spot was a good idea, and I liked Psycho Miz going off on them, but the kids no sold him and even they didnt believe Cena was in actual danger, which perfectly encapsulated the entire problem. I almost killed a bitch when they went with a lame Rock/Foley finish, but thankfully they only sold it for 30 seconds and kept going. Good continuity with Referee Mike Chioda too. And we get the Cena/Orton win. All in all I thought they did the best they could with the limitations in credibility they went in with.
In conclusion, you really need to find Orton/Christian if you havent already.