So this week there must have been a problem with the international feed of Raw or something, because they showed a main event of Cena beating up Cole that had to have been straight out of mid-2011 when Cole was the top heel. Right? Right?!
I mean honestly, as far as Cena vs Cole goes, if King had that EXACT same match with Cole at Wrestlemania 27, it would have been the best payoff to an angle ever. Doing it here, 12 months removed from his angle and after Cole has been an almost-normal commentator for months, was rather pointless, even though I found the match surprisingly enjoyable. I sure as hell bought that nearfall off the Tensai Bomb. But there was absolutely no point to this, and coming off the back of Cena vs Ace it was even more redundant. Although I have to say, the strategy of “You think Cena sucks? But Michael Cole thinks Cena sucks and he’s a complete idiot! You must be wrong!” sure is…something.
One thing that should not be lost in the entire main event angle was that Cena vs Tensai was actually a hell of a little match there. Tensai looked by far the best he has yet, and there are few things more sure in wrestling than Cena getting destroyed by a hoss. I also thought King shoving Cole back into his seat in the middle of this was outstanding.
And speaking of, THE BIG SHOW INTERVIEW. Awesome. Its amazing what you can do with just a guy cutting a serious promo and throwing in a curse word or two. If they can do it for Brock, they might as well do it for their actual wrestlers too. Still hopelessly in love with this man.
Still in love with the Bryan/Punk/Kane/AJ Saga as well. They have done such a great job with this, continuing to build upon everything show after show, which in the current ADD climate is more of an achievement than it should be. The Punk vs Kane rematch on Raw was, again, a great match. Punk throwing caution to the wind early and hitting dive after dive after dive, before getting caught and TOSSED. He got another knee variation in by hitting it on Kane on the top. The entire last few minutes were pretty boss, including the finish. Bryan takes an opportunity to kick Punk. AJ comes out to ostensibly tell the referee and help Punk, but he ends up getting Chokeslammed instead. AGAIN her involvement has inadvertently (or not) screwed Punk!
And man, the aftermath where Kane stares down a hapless woman, as he so often does, AJ decides to charm her way out of it, and…it works? Kane looking utterly bewildered with her was awesome. And her backstage “Go crazy? Dont mind if I do!” with Josh was pretty cool too, since she is acting completely, inexplicably insane. Following that on Smackdown with her best Johnny Curtis stalking routine, and then the end of the show – coming down to stare insanely at Kane causing him to be BROGUE KICKED in distraction. First it was Punk, but now she has Kane hooked as well and is starting to f*ck sh*t up for him too. And strangely enough, Bryan is the only one unscathed from her touch. Hmm…
Speaking of the Smackdown main event, it was really good too. Somehow Kane, of all people, has managed to have three great matches in the space of 8 days. Sheamus, I have to say again, is super great as a babyface badass who beats the crap out of most guys and hangs tough with monsters like Kane. I also LOVE his shoulder. As in, guys working it over and Sheamus selling it. Its a different kind of injury angle to the usual, which is either ‘I have a surgically repaired ____ so it always gets worked over’ or ‘I have an injury specific to this match/feud to be worked over until it ends’. Sheamus first injured his shoulder back during the Bryan feud when Bryan would target it and work it over to set up the LeBell Lock. Then Alberto joined in and worked it over to set up his own Armbreaker. Sheamus, having had his arm worked over continually for 2 months, now has a chronic shoulder problem. Any time that he hits it now it twinges and gives an opening to his opponent, because it hasnt had time to heal from the constant battering. I think its fantastically realistic, and its a great way to give Sheamus a sense of vulnerability to go along with his super strong babyface badassery.
Sheamus is another one having good matches every show. I enjoyed the hell out of the Dolph match. The pre-break sequence where they spilled outside and Sheamus tried to stair Dolph but he leaped over them, Vickie distracted Sheamus and Dolph hit a sweet dropkick and Sheamus crashed was awesome. LOVED that. Stretch ruled too, just a really great TV match.
Which, coincidentally, Dolph also had with Christian on Smackdown. Who would have thought? Seeing that match on paper I was already freaking out, and I was not disappointed. Really super work. Lots of awesome movez, like the great Fameasser-powerbomb nearfall, Christian running for a spear into BAM DROPKICK, and finally Christian tossing Dolph off the top and BAM FROGSPLASH for the win. I love when he snaps that off quickly. Add in Cody being awesome tearing up the Peep Show set and on commentary, and there is too much win. Pumped for the rematch.
Smackdown Undercard Update: Still Awesome. Ryback continuing to hunt down two dudes at once is great, and I’m glad he got a Raw showcase. Sandow facepalming at inane WWE Comedy like Hornswoggle and attacking Tyson from behind like a douche was excellent, as was him keeping the cocky sprawl and Groucho Wiggle. We had a CESARO SIGHTING, a Very European Uppercut and the Package Clash looks a lot cooler when he hits it quickly. Sin Cara had a fun lucha flip around with Hunico on Raw (Hunico on Raw!) and an EVEN FUNNER flip around with DREW MAC on SD. Drew Mac on Smackdown! Drew is such a great base, seriously, and the DDT finish looked sweet.
The other Smackdown Undercard event of note is Brodus Clay. I think getting him off Raw and away from Big Show to avoid awkward questions is a good idea, and at least its not just a “lets forget about this” reset, since Brodus sees Show in his opponents and worked a tighter, rougher style to show his new aggression. Good stuff, and I hope it does lead to an eventual Show/Brodus meeting down the line.