Saturday 28 July 2012

SmackTalk 27.07.12

It’s difficult to summarise this week’s episode of SmackDown. A large portion of the show was given over to recapping Monday Night RAW. In addition to covering the 1000th episode in its entirety before SmackDown began the entire Punk heel turn and Triple v Lesnar segments were shown in full. While that makes sense because they are going to be two of the promotion’s top storylines in the coming weeks and months it left less time for fresh developments to take place on the blue show.

That’s nothing new though. SmackDown is routinely used as a way of getting the audience up to speed on the important things they missed on RAW. If they didn’t miss it… well, too bad. They’ll have to watch it again.

What SmackDown did achieve this week was crowning a new number on contender for Sheamus’s World Heavyweight championship in a match that pitted Kane, Alberto Del Rio, Daniel Bryan and Rey Mysterio against one another. It was ‘The Essence of Excellence’ that left victorious. Yes, he will once again challenge for ‘Great White’s’ belt.

The Sheamus v Del Rio feud has been going, on and off, since early April. That they will clash at SummerSlam in August verges on ridiculous. Part of the reason the feud’s been so lengthy is because of injuries to Del Rio. That was beyond WWE’s control but they’re still the ones keeping the rivalry going. Each man would benefit from being giving something else to do for a month or two before resuming this feud.

The way the four-way ended makes me think Mysterio may be getting added to the SummerSlam title match. If that happens then at least there will be something to freshen up ADR’s latest title challenge. That said I’d rather see Mysterio face Daniel Bryan in a singles match. If they were given fifteen minutes I think the two could produce one of the best WWE matches of the year.

Elsewhere Chris Jericho continued his programme with Dolph Ziggler when he threw ‘The Show Off’ into the ring to take a Brogue Kick. He followed that up with a Codebreaker. There’s plenty of time before SummerSlam to make this feud into something very special. I hope WWE makes the most of that.

The only other noteworthy occurrence was The Miz battling Christian in a rematch from RAW. This was presumably done to tie up loose ends and free ‘The Awesome One’ up for a completely new feud. Zack Ryder would be a good choice there.

While RAW 1000 may have been a big success the fact that the following evening’s SmackDown was so bereft of direction is worrying. RAW will be three hours long every week from now on and if the company’s writing team are already struggling to make SmackDown a high quality show things look very worrying indeed.

I suspected this would happen, but I didn’t think it would affect SmackDown this quickly. Apparently I was wrong.

RAW 1000 Recap

Tweet 1: WWE Then. WWE Now. WWE Forever. Yes... I'm watching SmackDown.
Tweet 2: Starting with a RAW recap makes sense for once.
Tweet 3: What was Vince's logic when hiring AJ as GM?
Tweet 4: I think the Big Angle would have been different if WWE had had access to Randy Orton. He's due a turn and is the next natural opponent for Rock.

Miz promo

Tweet 5: Over four and half minutes in I finally get to see some fresh footage.
Tweet 6: Is Miz now the most must see Intercontinental champion in history?
Tweet 7: It's what we've all been waiting for: an IC title feud built around tweets and Facebook likes!
Tweet 8: Booker doesn't think Christian taking his rematch right now is a good idea. It can't be then. Booker's never wrong.

Miz v Christian for the Intercontinental championship

Tweet 9: Miz has starred in one film that has yet to be released. That, in Cole's world, makes him a "huge movie star."
Tweet 10: Josh, if Miz didn't know he'd be competing then why did he come out in his wrestling gear?
Tweet 11: Iffy frog splash from Christian.
Tweet 12: Another frog splash? No, an iffy cross body instead.
Tweet 13: This is a tight match. Lots of counters and reversals.
Tweet 14: The spear? C'mon Christian you know that never works for you.
Tweet 15: Thumb to the eye, rollup with a handful of tights and 'The Awesome One' retains his white belt. Very good match.
Tweet 16: Rhodes v Sheamus. Why are they burying Cody?

Jinder Mahal v Ryback

Tweet 17: Jinder Mahal! AND THERE'S HIS PERSPEX BOX!!
Tweet 18: Mahal is on job duty to Ryback this week. He didn't even get the usual pre-squash promo.
Tweet 19: "Feeding time" for 'The Human Wrecking Ball'. #thingsyoullonlyhearinwrestling
Tweet 20: “Maw-hall” – Booker T
Tweet 21: Why is Ryback being booked to sell this much to Jinder Mahal?
Tweet 22: No selling the camel clutch?! That's power right there...
Tweet 23: Mahal is taking a count out because he's scared to face Ryback. What will happen to his Perspex box if he doesn't go back to the ring?

Ryback laughs at camels clutches...

Tout segment

Tweet 24: WWE are really pushing these Sonic sodas. Lawler made a thing of them on RAW and all three SD commentators were just pictured with them.
Tweet 25: Now to watch some incoherent clowns on Tout.
Tweet 26: Well everyone on Tout seems to love what Punk did to Rock. Not a very successful heel turn then.

Cody Rhodes v Sheamus

Tweet 28: Time to bury the impressive, main event calibre Cody Rhodes.
Tweet 29: If WWE got rid of the World Heavyweight title and booked the IC belt this strongly instead it would mean help to restore the mid-card belt.
Tweet 30: At this point the WHC can be viewed as the promotion's seconday title, despite it's "world" tag.
Tweet 31: "That's a rag-tagging right there, baby" - Booker T on a rag-tagging
Tweet 32: Is Booker saying baby so much because Cody is Dusty's son?
Tweet 33: Here comes Dolph Ziggler. Josh asks if he's about to cash in... as they cut to a break. Clearly not cashing in right away then.
Tweet 34: Ziggler will not cash in before SummerSlam. It will happen on that show or some time afterwards.

Here we see Ziggler doing an excellent job of hiding Josh Mathews from view

Tweet 35: They may have ADR be the one to take the belt off of Sheamus and then have Ziggler beat him.
Tweet 36: That could keep the three-way feud going and allow 'The Show Off' to work as a tweener.
Tweet 37: This is a pretty good match. Cody is unlikely to win but he's being allowed to look good against the champ.
Tweet 38: "Trust me, you don't get up from a kick like that" - Booker T, as Sheamus got up from a kick like that
Tweet 39: Cody is going to eat a Brogue Kick.
Tweet 40: 'The Heel' gets some heat for not cashing in. See? People want to see him as World champ.
Tweet 41: Jericho appears. Gone are the leather trousers and electric jacket, replaced by a Ziggler T-shirt and jeans.
Tweet 42: Jeans loose enough to allow a Codebreaker to be hit. 'Y2J' is very much a face again. That's a good thing. He's been a heel for years.

Santino v Antonio Cesaro

Tweet 43: Antonio Cesaro. Heeeey!!
Tweet 44: Cole describes Antonio as 'The Swiss Superman'. I want that to catch on.
Tweet 45: #Swissdeadlift
Tweet 46: This is non-title? I want Cesaro to win and then take the US gold from Santino in a rematch.
Tweet 47: Cesaro goes over with the brilliantly named Gotch Style Neutralizer. Because I like that name they'll probably stop using it.

Will the non-title victory lead to the former King of Wrestling becoming a champion?

Yoshi Tatsu v Damien Sandow

Tweet 48: Sandow v Tatsu. I can go with this.
Tweet 49: Well that was quick. What is his neckbreaker finish called? It needs a name.

Daniel Bryan v Rey Mysterio v Kane v Alberto Del Rio

Tweet 50: Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes!
Tweet 51: Albertooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo Deeeeeel Riiiiiiiiiiiooooooooooooooooooooo!!
Tweet 52: I like the way Del Rio mimes playing a piano when he walks onto the ramp.
Tweet 53: Rey's wearing a vest with a question mark on it again. There's something funny going on here.
Tweet 54: Either Rey's out of shape or he's got a new tat WWE management don't approve of. I hope it's the latter.
Tweet 55: Mysterio v Bryan. That's a singles match I'd like to see!
Tweet 56: #yeskicks
Tweet 57: Did Cole just reference something that happened in 2010?! It's rare for him to mention anything that happened more than six months ago.
Tweet 58: ADR used a back stabber. The commentary team don't acknowledge it.
Tweet 59: Del Rio goes to tap, Kane stops him. Couldn't ADR just have told the ref he quits?
Tweet 60: 619 to Bryan and ADR. Ricardo yanks Rey out of the ring and Del Rio gets the pin. I assume this will lead to Rey being added to the match.
Tweet 61: Del Rio v Mysterio v Sheamus for the WHC could be good. It's certainly a fresh match.

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