BY MICHAEL GOODPASTER|
I go into WWE shows with barely any expectations now. I know I’ll see some good matches that may or may not have enjoyable conclusions. I know I’ll see more than enough crap to dull any enthusiasm I could possibly form about the actual potential of the show. On paper the line-up rocked. Some substantial singles matches are being given to us and outside of it missing Daniel Bryan and maybe ANOTHER Usos vs. Wyatt match(I like ‘em) this card has potential to eclipse even WrestleMania for PPV/super cards this year.
But did it? Not really.
RVD and Cesaro happened again and RVD won this time. Good for him. I’m happy Dolph Ziggler won the IC Title from The Miz but I hope they get to have a little run for an actual storyline to develop. They have solid chemistry and the mic work could be hot. This could easily be a solid midcard feud to help elevate the belt and both guys. Paige is Diva Champion again and that’s fine with me. I don’t care either way unless they do something more engaging than this. I’m starting to miss Alicia Foxx’s tantrums. It was at least notable. The “Flag Match” had the crowd really into it and was a pretty decent match for what it was. Rusev wins and Swagger still looks strong. There’s not much more you can ask for. The problem here is that the Flag Match rules weren’t there. It was just a match with a victory celebration. This feud should be over the US Title and had the Lumberjack Match stipulation. Speaking of which, I’m okay with Rollins winning because it means we’ll likely get more Rollins and Ambrose match ups going forward. They pretty much stole the show and made what is typically a lame gimmick match and turned it into something unique and memorable. I’m really happy they pulled it off. Jericho put Wyatt over in a very solid match. Props to Y2J for helping make Bray Wyatt look like a million bucks here. He needs the bounce back up the card after a great debut and weird stalemate as of late. I can only hope this means they have a rematch with a stipulation of some sorts and then we can get something different like a Bray Wyatt vs. Dolph Ziggler feud or Wyatt vs. Mark Henry, Big Show and Kane in some sort of “you’re time is up and it’s up to us to kill the monsters” type of storyline.
The match that surprised me the most was Stephanie defeating Brie. They worked a nice match and kept the crowd eating from the palm of their hands. Stephanie pulled out a few cool moves and Brie sold the shit out of everything for her. It was a stiff match and had great response. It’s not a five star and no one could have nor should have expected that. The heel turn with Nikki was expected on my part. I have a feeling this storyline is headed down a crappy path.
Roman Reigns and Randy Orton put on a solid match. I think I wanted Orton to win by the time it was over. He was playing with his A-game for this show and had tons of energy and intensity to him. You could tell he was hyped up and wanted to do well. He did. He made Reigns look like a superstar despite being so limited. He’ll be okay. I hope he gets rewarded with a nice face turn or something down the line. Maybe a Randy Orton vs. Bray Wyatt storyline or a Randy Orton vs. Dean Ambrose storyline could go somewhere. The main event was brutal. I mean that in two ways. It was brutal display or carnage and it was brutal to the viewer hoping to see something exciting or even moderately paced. It was a memorable “fight” though. It’s going to be hard to forget the crazy and brutal suplexes that Cena took and how Brock kept toying with him. The problem is it just dragged on and on. It could have been three to four minutes shorter and only been that much better because it would have hit at a more engaging part of the match flow.
Regardless, Brock Lesnar is the champ now. This does nothing for me.
This show was exactly what we expected, but at the same time it wasn’t. The company is going to move forward in this direction whether anyone likes it or not. The WWE has a freakin’ Network, cartoons, great merchandising and is as accessible as ever. If the actual product matched up and was engaging television it would be a perfect world (wrestling entertainment). The booking style seems to have gone “old school” in terms of them putting a feud together or even just a specific match-up with no real feud at all and let the match repeat for a few weeks on the shows. How many times did RVD and Rollins face each other? How many times did we see Dean Ambrose and Cesaro now without letting them have some sort of storyline to make a really great match even that much more engaging? We are not getting as many “storylines” as we used to but we’re getting more wrestling, which is always good. The problem is that the WWE has more hours on television, on their AP and of course the network. They have the platform is give the fans more. The wrestling has been great, but the storylines have no oomph. Seth Rollins heel turn is cool because Ambrose is shining like a star against him, but the reason of “why” is lame. Bray Wyatt is a great character but isn’t getting things written for him that’s all that memorable. Basically, it call comes down to the lack of depth in the storylines and character arcs. This stuff isn’t asking for too much. Investing so many hours to being a WWE fan should pay off in the form of engaging and enthralling entertainment and memories. If the WWE can’t keep me wanting to invest my time it makes me wonder how anyone would want to invest in the company’s stock. Here’s to the future.