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SD!: ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW
Big Show Takes the Night Off
September 14, 2013

by PyroFalkon
Master of the PyroFalkon Multimedia Empire, Incorporated
Follow Pyro's Tweets
on Twitter --/-- View Pyro's Videos on Youtube

 
All right, I'm finally starting the SD recap before 8:30pm! I have a very specific strategy: come home, cook, immediately start SD before looking at my e-mail or other websites. This will have to be my weekly strategy from now on if I want to stop these crazy late nights.
 

Speaking of late nights though, next Sunday (the 22nd) will be a long day and night for me, with any luck. Not only will it be my birthday, but I'm attempting a videogame challenge that's been hanging over my head for nearly 20 years. If you want to cheer me on, I'll be streaming live on Twitch, specifically http://www.twitch.tv/pyrofalkon

 

Granted, I know that the Venn diagram featuring my OO audience and my YouTube audience, uh, basically doesn't result in any commonality. But hey, what good is my precap if not for shameless self-promotion? And besides, if you tune into Twitch while I'm playing, you'll be able to chat with me in real-time, and can even call in with Skype if you want to chat. Just because I'll be playing an old Super Nintendo game doesn't mean we can't talk wrestling, or... hot chicks, or Syria, or whatever. It'll be fun, and while I'll be starting at noon Eastern, I'm likely going to be playing for 10 hours straight (or so), so you can pop in and out whenever you want to chat.

Still, that's next week. This week is the last SmackDown until Night of Champions, so let's see how WWE finished moving the pieces before the pay-per-view.

Segment 1: After pleasantries, Big Show hits the ring. As he does so, Michael Cole passes along the information that Triple H is going to punish Show for now hitting Daniel Bryan with a WMD punch during RAW's ending.

Show grabs a mic and produces a piece of paper from somewhere, and begins to deadpan a statement to boos. He “apologizes” to Triple H and the locker room for being a bad superstar, and then “apologizes” to the WWE fans for letting us down in not punching DB. He's clearly insincere, but still reads it without sarcasm, other than a couple facial twitches.

Triple H then pops out onto the stage, thanks him for his apology while accepting its insincerity, then insists that he's not trying to pick on Big Show. Show just needs to professional, and he has to realize that insubordination is usually grounds for dismissal. So now... he's not going to fire Show, but he is going to suspend him without pay. Trips adds that it's really bad for Show, since he's so totally broke. So... let's go.

Trips leaves, and Show starts to, but then The Shield's music fires up. Show decides to hang out in the ring, but he doesn't have his guard up. Shield doesn't bother with waiting, and they jump him. Show fights back, but he can't deal with the numbers game, and is eventually dropkicked out of the ring. Show lands clean, then crazily decides to make his stand on top of the announce table.

Shield surround him again, and Roman Reigns grabs a chair. Show takes a shot in the leg, so he drops to his knee on the table. Reigns winds up for a second attack, but Show punches the chair, sending Reigns flying, because physics don't have any place in professional wrestling. Show boots Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose away, and when Reigns stands, Show decides to Spear Reigns in the neck by jumping off the table. Because apparently, Show's new body cut also means he's completely insane.

But Show isn't done, so he flings Reigns in the ring, then readies him for a chokeslam. Ambrose comes in to try to make the save, but Show grabs him by the throat with his other hand. Rollins then tries to make the double save by going up to the top rope. Show lets go of the others, then does a monstrous punch to Rollins in midair, which he (properly) oversells as he crashes into the mat.

As Rollins struggles to his feet, Show balls his fist and readies to hit Rollins with a WMD. However, Reigns had recovered, grabbed a chair, and beat the piss out of Show with a good dozen shots. The heels wrap up with a triple powerbomb, leaving Show knocked out in the ring. The Shield is wounded though, and they're selling while they do their little three-way fist sign over Show's body.

Fantastic segment though. Not exactly redeeming the bullshit they've had Show involved in for the past month, but it was still pretty solid and entertaining. The crowd was very into it, even a few guys who were chanting for a powerbomb before its execution.

Segment 2 [Six-Diva Tag Match]: Natalya, Naomi, Brie Bella (w/ Nikki Belle & Eva Marie) defeat Aksana, Alicia Fox, & Layla by disqualification. The match was basically nothing, aside from Naomi's awesome flying headscissors, because it existed to tell the same the story it told on Monday. Not sure why the bothered with the curtain call.

Natalya started to apply the Sharpshooter to Alicia, but then AJ (who was on commentary) slid in the ring. Even though she didn't touch anyone, the ref called for the bell.

Post-Segment 2: AJ found herself staring down the “faces,” who then proceeded to take turns beating the crap out of her. In fairness, AJ threw the first punch, but for being supposedly faces, Naomi, Brie, and Natalya attacked a little hard. Before much harm could come to her though, the “heels” pulled AJ out of the ring.

Still, what was more interesting was after that: Lilian Garcia announced the winners, and the crowd unanimously booed that shit. Which, to me, is wonderful: the crowd has essentially turned AJ tweener at worst or face at best, and they're not buying the Total Divas bullshit either. One of my friends regards the entire storyline as sexist (as she interprets Creative as insisting that feminism is a bad thing), but even if that's true, any sexism is on the writers, not the fans. The fans, by and large, are siding with AJ here, just as they sided with Punk two years ago.

And I draw that parallel because I had an extended conversation about this particular storyline with my aforementioned friend. I'm not interpreting this as a feminism deal at all; to me, it's the same storyline that Punk/Cena had two years ago. It's The Best insisting that they have the title and earn it because they are, in fact, The Best; and they don't like the Corporate, Appearance-Only competition getting more of the attention and face time. There are differences in the storylines, I don't think they're true parallels, but to me, this whole thing is about AJ being awesome and earning her title, defending it against all comers, especially against those who are getting the camera for superficial reasons.

Regardless of everyone's interpretation of the story, it seems pretty unanimous that AJ is the protagonist here. As long as she wrestles clean and doesn't do anything out of character on Sunday, I don't see why her point would be nullified even if she loses. The only person who is doing any damage to AJ at this point is JBL, who keeps calling her “crazy” (behind her back of course, but on the headsets where we can all hear it), which does belittle AJ's entire point, mostly because AJ is morally right in that The Best should have the most screen time if we're living in a perfect world.

Particulars aside, this is why wrestling can be awesome: it's a storyline that's character-driven, rather than narrative-driven. It's just AJ being AJ, trying to defend her title, and trying to prove that talent beats superficiality. We'll see if she can succeed on Sunday.

Segment 3: Vickie Guerrero is already in the ring as we get back from ads... just to announce that it's a dance contest. Specifically: “Dancing with the WWE Superstars.” Because reality TV is exactly what WWE needs to emulate.

And if you think I'm going to do anything but shorthand this, you're insane.

R-Truth hits the ring, Fandango and Summer Rae hit the ring, The Miz hits the ring with a fake afro, bell bottoms, and an entirely too loud shirt, and then he steals a plant's hot pink sequined jacket. Miz blathers with a stupid accent like he's... uh... John Travolta from Saturday Night Fever, I guess? And he calls himself “Mizco Inferno.” It's times like this that I think Rick should pay me.

Oh wait, Khali comes now too. Yep: I demand payment for my services this time.

Truth “dances” (including a 360-degree twerk, just to make me hate myself even more), Fandango dances with Summer, Miz suffers a total neurological collapse as his entire nervous system malfunctions, and then Khali slides fifteen inches in all directions simultaneously. I wonder what Andrea Lynn (the original Fandangirl) thinks of that bullshit.

The “voting” goes too long, then Miz wins for basically putting his feet on the middle rope and twerking. Fandango is pissy, whiffs a punch, then gets his ass kicked. Then Miz and Truth “dance” together. Khali just gets the hell out of there, and I don't blame him one bit. Ugh.

Segment 4: Los Matadores. Their music is pretty sweet, but otherwise... yeah, just debut and shut the hell up already.

Segment 5: Ryback cuts a promo in the back that, uh, is surprisingly well-spoken. Well, it's less a promo and more just putting himself over for about thirty seconds. And he's here to be an “interviewer,” and interviews Some Guy. Naturally, this leads to Ryback kicking his ass just to keep doing the whole “bully” thing. Whatever... although, it gives me a little hope that Ryback can actually cut a promo.

Segment 6: Ricardo Rodriguez arrives in Vickie's office. Vickie is here to tell him that he's totally not going to be in RVD's corner at Night of Champions because she doesn't want to risk his health. They argue in Spanish, and then Vickie concedes that Ricardo can be in RVD's corner on Sunday... if RVD gets to be in his corner tonight, when Ricardo faces Alberto Del Rio. Ricardo tries to talk her out of that decision, but she's not having it.

Pre-Segment 7: Damien Sandow hits the ring and immediately calls the Canadians his “slack-jawed mouth-breathing neighbors to the north,” and promises to kick Santino Marella's ass “to free us from our inadequacies of our self-imposed ignorance, eh?” Heh, cute. And we're welcome, apparently.

Also, either WWE sweetened the sound, or Santino is way more over than I thought he was.

Segment 7 [Singles Match]: Santino Marella defeats Damien Sandow by pin. Decent match, nothing special, but a fun little ride. Well, other than Sandow slapping on the ever-popular abdominal stretch, but luckily it lasted about five seconds before Santino slipped out and hit a side suplex... which, uh, he freaking dead-lifted Sandow, which can't be good for his back.

The end came when Sandow whiffed on a charge to the corner and slammed his shoulder into the ring post, then ate the Cobra. Pin, fin.

Segment 8: Michael Cole is in the ring for his “exclusive interview” with Curtis Axel and Paul Heyman. This is going to take place in the ring for once rather than a backstage segment. Heyman, as JBL says, looks like he hasn't slept in a week: thee scruffy beard, red eyes, good stuff.

We open with a montage of the feud, one that is heavily anti-Heyman. It's Curtis Axel who answers Cole's first question and essentially says that Punk so totally won't get to Heyman since Punk can't beat him. Then Heyman tells everyone that they need to boycott Night of Champions, which is an interesting strategy to get people to buy it. Seriously, I like the reverse psychology: Heyman begs people to invest in a college fund or “buying that important medical procedure for your wife,” whatever the hell that means. He concludes that people have better things to spend their money on, especially since if they buy Night of Champions, he's sure that we'll see Punk tear him apart. Which, naturally, gets a bunch of cheers.

Heyman insists that Punk isn't necessarily a better fighter or wrestler than Axel, but that Punk will figure out a way to “make the system work against itself” and figure out a way to get his hands on Heyman. The fans cheers, and Heyman, to his credit, doesn't try to have any bravado here: he just looks lost and dazed as he considers the fans' ruthlessness. Pretty sweet sell-job. He insists that Punk will kick his ass so bad, it'll be the last time we see Heyman. More cheers. But Heyman still declares that he will always love CM Punk, but will never forgive any of us fans.

And with that, Heyman just leaves the ring. He only gets to the apron as the fans pretty much scream the “Goodbye” song to him. Heyman absorbs it as he stands on the apron, then starts to leave as the fans taper off... which makes them sing it louder again. Heh.

Well, that was short and didn't overstay its welcome, and Heyman (as Punk did on Monday) did a good job trying to make us buy it, and sell the pay-per-view as a real event. Still not enough for me, since I don't have that much disposable income this month, but a good job nonetheless. Hell, the only reason I'm not buying it is a lack of cash, since I'm going after Grand Theft Auto V on Tuesday.

Segment 9 [Singles Match]: Alberto Del Rio extend-squashes Ricardo Rodriguez (w/ Rob Van Dam) by pin. Decent match for what it was, I guess. Did what it had to do. ADR beat the piss out of Ricardo, who got in two offensive moves, including a sweet tornado DDT from the corner. But RVD then suggested Ricardo should follow it up with a move off the top rope, which is stupid; Ricardo was so slow getting up there that ADR recovered and crotched him on the upper turnbuckle. From there, ADR did a sick top rope belly-to-back superplex with some added torque. Ricardo ate the canvas and took the three.

Post-Segment 9: ADR celebrated with his title, then slapped on the Cross Arm Breaker. RVD was in the ring in a nanosecond, beat the crap out of ADR, then hit the Five-Star Frog Splash. ADR bailed as he sold it, and RVD posed with the title.

Segment 10: Video highlight reel of the DB/Orton feud. This includes a couple highlights from a Cole/Trips interview that I haven't seen yet, and it's pretty sweet; was that a WWE.com exclusive or something? It's Trips justifying his actions and his rhetoric bullshit. Very well done.

Pre-Segment 11: The next match is a non-title match, Dolph Ziggler vs. Dean Ambrose. If Dolph wins, he gets a title shot against Ambrose at Night of Champions. Seems like a foregone conclusion to me, given that the PPV is Night of Champions, you know?

Segment 11 [Singles Match]: Dolph Ziggler defeats Dean Ambrose by disqualification. Decent match but nothing to speak of here. During Dolph's last hope spot, Shield came down and kicked his ass. The Usos then ran in to even the odds... no Siva Tau makes PyroFalkon a sad panda.

Vickie then pops out to declare that Dolph gets his wish and his title shot, but since the Usos are here now, we're just going to go ahead with a six-man tag match after the ads. Alrighty.

Segment 12 [Six-Man Tag Match]: The Shield defeats The Usos & Dolph Ziggler by pin. Better match, somewhat more entertaining. Dolph was the FIP, but the Usos cleaned house and started a Pier Six Brawl. This included Dolph hitting a weird flying lariat to the ropes that caused Dolph to overshoot and basically throw himself out of the ring as he clotheslined Ambrose over the top rope. I had to watch it twice on replay to figure out what the hell was going on.

The faces looked like they were going to win, capped off with one of the Usos going for his high splash off the top rope. However, Seth Rollins, the intended target, got his knees up and countered, then immediately grabbed the Uso into a pin. It happened so fast that I'm not even sure half the crowd realized the move was blocked. Regardless, Rollins made the schoolboy pin, and that was that.

Segment 13: Edge is here for a return trip. He makes a weird kissy-face with his lips while Tony Chimel hits the “Soooooperstar” part of his intro. Strangely, they timed it so Chimel did the introduction before Edge hit his pyros, so Edge delayed his pose to blow them until Chimel was done. Interesting.

Anyway, after replays of RAW when Christian was written out, Edge says that he's here because Trips says The Cutting Edge is totally “good for business,” which somehow starts a “Good for business!” chant. Edge cheap-pops the crowd by saying that he's here for us. And that's great, but he's not going to forget about Trips, the fact that he (Edge) has no respect for him, and that “along the way, he (Trips) lost his genitals.” Heh, cute. Edge looks right at the camera and declares that Christian needs to get better, and when he comes back, it won't be for “one more match,” but will be to tear The Shield apart.

But Edge likes his Cutting Edge because it “cuts through the crap,” so let's get to the guests: Orton and DB hit the ring respectively. Edge's opening jab is to ask Orton what it's like to be a sell out. Orton replies that Edge is just jealous of Orton, since Orton is a 10-time champion and Edge is “nothing more than a washed up talk show host who can't wrestle anymore.” Uh, Orton, you do realize that Edge is an 11-time champion if we count the WWE and the World Heavyweight together, right? And that Edge has won 31 titles in WWE total? I would venture to say that although it's now proven Orton can spell two-letter words correctly, he really needs to work on his ability to count. DB tries to white-knight Edge, but Edge calms him down and, in fact, expresses the aforementioned math.

So Orton changes gears and says that he didn't sell out; he cashed in his Money in the Bank contract like anyone would have in the same spot. (Why he doesn't mention Edge doing it, I have no idea, since that would have been 100% perfect on-topic.) Besides, Orton goes on, he's only doing this at the behest of the McMahons and Helmsleys, since he's the face because “after ten years of John Cena, WWE needs the change.” This, predictably, draws a few cheers and practically zero boos. Regardless, Orton insists that DB isn't part of that change. He also concedes that DB is “good for business”... but that he is best for business.

Edge suggests that he knows what's “best for business,” and that the fans do too, but wants to know if DB thinks he is best for business. DB smiles and says that he knows everyone wants him to do the air fingers, but won't do it because he doesn't really care about the business. Orton calls him naïve and insists he'll never be the champion, but DB just tells him to shut up. To DB, the most important things in his life have nothing to do with businesses or balance sheets; it's all about passion and dreams for DB, and being WWE Champion is his dream. He's never dreamed of being a face of a corporation; he's just dreamed of holding the WWE Title, and he will achieve his dream at Night of Champions.

Orton says something stupid, then punches DB in the face. Orton then talks shit to Edge, then goes after DB again, and walks into the Yes Lock super-quick. Orton crawls around, but then taps a couple times. Refs arrive to peel DB off, and Orton rolls out of the ring while selling the shoulder. DB does his Yes fingers, Orton seethes, and Edge quietly exits the ring.

Final Thoughts: Ugh. Well, the whole night was pretty dry on wrestling, which I guess is to be expected before a PPV. The six-man tag match was match of the night, in the same way that Taco Bell is the healthiest restaurant on Main Street in Xenia, Ohio. I get it, I suppose, but it didn't make for a very exciting night.

Stories advanced, things happened, and fuel was added to most fires, but... well... if you weren't already sold on the PPV, nothing here was going to change your mind. And as an episode in vacuum, this episode can be completely skipped.

Nothing more from me tonight, folks, but come back to Online Onslaught at 11:30pm on Sunday, where Rick will have the Night of Champions recap for your reading pleasure.

Episode Grade: C-

 
E-MAIL PYROFALKON


  
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