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SD!: ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW
Deja vu, All Over Again (or, "Of Shows That Suck for 90 Minutes, But then There's An Awesome Shield Main Event")
January 26, 2013

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

 
This has been a fast enough week that I honestly have nothing to talk about. I contracted a cold halfway through the week but am already basically over it, other than a few sniffles and some minor congestion... it wound up being a 48-hour bug, which I rarely get. Generally, either I get nothing, or I'm out of commission for a week.
 

I was a guest on The Superplex Show, a nice one-hour show that airs online at Twitch.tv. It's run by one of our very own OO Forum members, and you can check out the archived broadcast here: http://t.co/RUz7RWy9Fq. The show featured the hosts' thoughts and feelings on Hell in a Cell, as well as mine; trust me when I say, their opinions are way less apathetic than mine. Check it out!

And also check out my recap, as we enter the last episode before the pay-per-view...

Segment 1: The ring is carpeted in black and has a couple director's style chairs. Sadly, this is not the return of The Cutting Edge, but an interview with Michael Cole, who is doing his weekly sit-down with Triple H in front of the audience At least, I still think it's weekly; you couldn't convince me without money to give enough of a crap to visit wwe.com every day.

They chat about Big Show, and to WWE's credit, Trips tries not to treat us like idiots as he declares that everyone involved in Big Show's crashing RAW—from the production Truck Monkey who let the feed go through to the cameraman—have all been fired. So, okay, for this week, we're assuming that WWE doesn't exist in a five-hour vacuum twice a week.

But then Trips says that Big Show is suing WWE for no apparent reason, and as such, he can't comment further about him. But then they chat about John Cena and how he's so totally awesome and manly, and I don't care. They they talk about the Daniel Bryan/Randy Orton match, and although I care much more about that one, they don't add anything to the match other than some light hype.

Trips concludes by an allusion that Shawn Michaels will do the “right thing” as the guest ref. When Cole asks for clarification, DB's music fires up, and he hits the ring. When he gets there, we see that Cole has bailed. DB cuts a promo on Trips about how he'll totally win, yes, yes, yes, while Trips just glares.

Relatively week opening. In a vacuum, it wasn't bad, but it didn't build on anything that we've heard before since the feud started.

Pre-Semgent 2: Siva Tau fuck yeah! Followed by the Wyatt Family creeping out everyone! And Lilian Garcia in a ridiculously fetching purple dress (which, somehow, makes her look almost unhealthily thin). This is truly the greatest entrance sequence in the past year.

Oh, and The Miz is on commentary, but I don't give a rat's prostrate.

Segment 2 [Tag Match]: The Usos defeat The Wyatt Family (w/ Bray Wyatt) by pin. Short match that fuels the fires of the feud, but wasn't exactly thrilling.

If I was in the mood to use more hyphens, I could classify this one in my totally confusing “extended-reverse-squash” category. The Wyatts kicked the Usos' asses for a couple minutes with roughneck offense, and... well, as usual, it's not going to win any awards, but it got the job done.

Still, the Usos were a skosh better as a team and were able to stifle the heels' rally, eventually sending both guys packing on the west side the ring. One of the Usos did a suicide cross body over the top rope to take down Eric Rowan, but when the other Uso tried the same thing on Luke Harper, Harper punched him in the face. The heels regained control from there to toss the Usos back in the ring.

Remember I said they were on the west side of the ring? Well, Bray was there, just hanging out, and he stood up to give his brothers some instructions. Miz, showing more of that babyface wit he's known for, determinedly barks into the mic, “Well, if he's standing up, I'm going to stand up too.” Then Miz runs around the ring and just flattens Bray.

Harper (legal) was already in the ring by this point, but Rowan gave chase to Miz, who just hauled ass through gorilla. Harper watched, but then turned around... right into double Sweet Chin Music (or whatever you want to call the Usos' version of it). The ref didn't give a shit about the rather blatant double-teaming, and whichever Uso was legal made the pin.

Segment 3 [Singles Match]: AJ (w/ Tamina) defeats Nikki Bella (w/ Brie Bella) by submission. Subpar match; there is no question that Brie is the better Bella in-ring, unless WWE had handcuffed Nikki for some reason. Nikki spend 75% of the match getting destroyed, and the other 25% hitting the most basic moves in the world with subpar timing.

The finale saw AJ thrown (awkwardly) into the corner at the end of Nikki's only real rally. Nikki then tried a running driving front kick, but AJ dodged, causing Nikki to crash and burn on the lower turnbuckle... with that INJURED~! leg that's kept her out of action for months.

Meanwhile, Tamina was standing near Nikki from outside the ring. I don't think Tamina was actually doing anything, but Brie ran over to stop any shenanigans. However, Tamina is way bigger and stronger, and it was Brie herself who got, uh, shenniganned by being thrown head-first into the steps.

In the ring, Nikki recovered enough to get to her feet, but she was selling the knee and ankle, so AJ slapped on the Black Widow. Nikki waited several seconds before tapping out, thank God... I hate instant tap outs.

So the story here is that both Bella are hurting as AJ picks up her first victory in a while, thus getting strong momentum as we head into Sunday's PPV. Does this mean AJ has a chance??? Smell the drama and excitement!

Segment 4: WWE wants you to buy its videogame on Tuesday. (I'm totally going to, because of course I am.)

Segment 5: WWE wants you to know that John Cena is quite possibly the greatest person in the world, and he makes Mother Theresa look like she gives two-dollar handjobs.

Segment 6: We have a smash-cut from there to the back as Bray Wyatt has apparently verbally kidnapped a cameraman. Deep in the bowels of the building, Miz is unconscious on his ass with his hands chained to some scaffolding with Rowan and Harper flanking him. The word “Liar” is inked in Sharpie across Miz's stomach, but for some reason they left his vest on him. Bray says Miz will now learn what it truly means to follow the buzzards, and then the whole Wyatt Family leaves. Creepy.

Pre-Segment 7: During Los Matadores' entrance, Cole accidentally implied that El Torito was a bull in a bull costume, leading to some cute out-of-character riffing by JBL. I'm glad they left that in.

Segment 7 [Tag Match]: Los Matadores (w/ El Torito) extend-squash 3MB by pin. Whatever.

The only thing that was remotely interesting thing here was that the Real Americans looked on from the stage, but they didn't do anything.

After the match, El Torito kicked Jinder Mahal's ass, nearly botching an Asai Moonsault.

Post-Segment 7: Also after the match, Zeb Colter cut a promo that, once again, proved he totally lost his mind. He accused the Los Matadores of “kidnapping a man and forcing him to wear a bull costume,” meaning Zeb has also totally lost touch with reality. Meaning it's still good satire.

Anyway, Zeb talks some more shit, then concludes with “We the people,” and the whole crowd was singing along. They may be heels, but it's obvious that they're over.

Anyway, everyone just taunted everyone as we faded out from there to ads.

Segment 8 [1-on-2 No-Disqualification Match]: Paul Heyman & Ryback extend-squash Some Guy by pin. The “Some Guy” was nicknamed “CM Skunk,” because he was dressed like Punk but had a white streak in his black hair. Get it? GET IT???

So the heels beat the holy hell out of the jobber for entirely too long, and even tagged each other in despite it being a No-DQ match. Even referee Charles Robinson was all, “Why the hell are you bothering to do that, you guys?” At the end game, they remembered their own rules, so Heyman invited Ryback to just come into the ring even though he was pretending to be illegal.

Anyway, the jobber didn't get in any offense, but he got the shit beaten out of him with a kendo stick and a neat little powerbomb combo from Ryback.

Segment 9: Vickie Guerrero is in the back and laughing her ass off at how clever the Punk/Skunk pun was, which makes me sad on her behalf. Then Big E. Langston comes in to say his first words as a face, as he reminds us that The Miz is now out of the main event, so he wants to take his place. Vickie is all, “I'll think about and run it by Triple H.” Langston is all, “Triple H? Aren't you the GM of SmackDown? Or did I accidentally walk into Brad Maddox's office?” BURN! Geez, Big E. just showed more personality in one minute than Miz has during his entire face run. (Look, I know Miz is trying, but the dude clearly needs to be a heel, or at least be given a different character.)

Anyway, Vickie is pissed now, so she adds him to the main event but insists that he never compares her to Maddox again. Langston looks like he just smelled a fart, so he leaves without another word.

Segment 10: Alberto Del Rio hits the stage wearing a freaking amazing suit that I totally want to steal. It's straight out of Johnny Cash's wardrobe, and that isn't anywhere close to an insult. I want it.

Anyway, ADR blathers. It's uninteresting. And he concludes by telling us to “Kiss my...” because “ass” is too edgy for SmackDown, even though he slaps his ass.

Segment 11: R-Truth and Santino Marella shotgun some Monsters and Red Bulls to start shilling for WWE Shop.

Cut Scene: Summer Rae does a spicy hip pop that Rosa Mendes would be proud of... also, I think Fandango was in the frame, but if he was, I was mentally blocking him out. Regardless, this makes another “commercial-to-commercial” bumper crop of non-matches, which is the kind of thing that dumps a gallon of sand in Rick's vagina, and makes me fall asleep in my chair. [Ed. Note: actually, this one doesn't count the same as the one on RAW. I don't require in-ring matches; I just require value-added content, not replays, hype videos, replays of hype videos, shilling for toys, etc. Here, Alberto actually cut a new promo. It wasn't earth-shattering, but it still doesn't get the FF treatment like all that other nonsense does.]

Segment 12 [Singles Match]: Someone won by DQ, but damned if I know who it was. So, this was ostensibly Khali (with his dancing troupe of Natalya and Hornswoggle) versus Fandango (with Summer “second-best hip pops in WWE” Rae). Khali was doing a squash until Summer popped up on the apron and did more hip pops and butt wiggles, which of course makes me want to give her “My” status.

But Natalya wasn't having any of that bullshit, so she ran over and pulled Summer off the apron. Summer slapped Natalya's teeth out of her mouth, then remembered that Natalya trained in The Dungeon, and probably shouldn't be messed with. So Summer performs the wisest move in this situation: she screams and runs away, which is something I'd probably do if I pissed off Natalya too.

Summer decides that the best place to run is into the ring for no apparent reason. Natalya catches her and does some mounted punches, and Summer slips out and does her own mounting... and then the ref calls for the bell. So... double DQ? I guess? I don't know.

Fandango didn't get the memo that the match stopped, so he peeled Summer off Natalya, then tries to keep attacking Khali. Khali responds with a brain chop, and everyone dances.

Pre-Segment 13: Langston is so over at this point that fans are doing his “LeBron James on speed” routine.


Please... for all of us at Online Onslaught, if you're considering doing that, have yourself escorted from the building and run over by a garbage truck. The world's gene pool will thank you.

Segment 13 [8-Man Tag Match]: Daniel Bryan, Big E. Langston, Cody Rhodes, & Goldust defeat Randy Orton & The Shield by pin. Outstanding match, definitely worth YouTubing. I'd call it juuuust shy of “free-per-view,” and as a lead-in to Sunday, it told so many interconnected stories that it did absolutely everything it needed to do. It was also non-formula, and had tons of workrate from basically everyone.

Goldust with the early offense, mostly picking on Dean Ambrose. Cody tagged in and chucked Ambrose out of the ring on the south side, prompting all the heels to rally around him and check on him. None of the faces followed, but we went to ads.

Back, and it's Rollins and Langston who are legal. Langston gets the better of the opening exchange, Cody tags himself in again, and Rollins presently whips him toward the corner and charges after him. Cody, apparently studying the one cool unique move that Orton does, counters with a cute little jump and twist to avoid Rollins's charge, sit on his back, and fall forward into a sunset flip pin attempt. Neat!

But then Rollins counters a punch into a falling front Russian Leg Sweep that makes Cody kiss the middle turnbuckle at full speed, thus starting a short heel beatdown sequence. Reigns does the work, but the sequence is cut short after Cody counters and tags in DB, who does some work before tagging Langston back in. Then it's Goldust who tags in for this “let's beat the crap out of Roman Reigns” sequence, including a top rope no-look backwards cross body, which is again a thing I didn't realize Goldust could do.

The faces continue their dominance until Reigns shoves Cody into the heels corner. Ambrose works on Cody a bit too, and then tags in Orton for the first time. Orton does some damage, but Cody is still able to hit an early counter out of nowhere to take control even from him, including a rather sick front suplex. Holy crap, are the heels going to lose momentum here? There hasn't been a true Face in Peril segment yet!

Oh, wait, here we go... Orton finally gets momentum by raking Cody's eyes, then front suplexes him onto the ropes, and concludes by punching him in the face to send him off the apron on the south side. Dean Ambrose tags in, then does a neat Russian Leg Sweep to Cody directly into the barricade. Ambrose then flings Cody in, and the heel beatdown sequence and Cody as Face in Peril is on.

Stomps, roughneck offense, you know the drill. Orton tags in, then walks in two circles around Cody before attacking. Bad idea, as Cody recovers and tries to fight back. However, after an exchange, Orton does his trademark backbreaker on Cody while Cody's feet are on the middle rope. This not only does the whole backbreaker thing, but it basically guillotines Cody's neck on Orton's forearm. Cody tumbles out of the ring, and we go to our last ads.

[Mid-match ads include one of the creepiest fucking vignettes ever. It was to advertise that Cena recovered and is coming back, but it looked like the plot of a horror movie where an undead Cena absolutely wrecks your shit. That'll be my nightmare tonight.]

Back, and Reigns hits Cody with a suplex, then floats over for a pin... or possibly a horizontal tea bag, I don't really know what Reigns was going for there. Either way, Cody kicks out, but Rollins tags in and keeps him controlled. Rapid tags keep Cody contained still, but Cody breaks free after countering Rollins's top rope axe handle with a midair punch to the gut.

Hot tag to Goldust, but Reigns hot tags to Reigns, and now it's Goldust who's the face in peril. Rapid tags, cut the ring in half, you know the drill... Punches, stomps, kicks, no holds here, just straight-up offense. The heels make a mistake when Ambrose and Reigns try to double-team Goldust by whipping him into the heels corner; Goldust hops up on the bottom rope, then springboards backwards off with double elbows that find the heels' faces.

Double hot tags, Daniel Bryan and Dean Ambrose, though no one told DB not to punch literally every face he can. DB didn't stop for a breath as beat the hell out of everyone, as he single-handedly made all the heels powder out, and after his Yes Kicks, he slapped on the Yes Lock to Ambrose.

But DB wasn't able to keep the heels down, and it was Reigns who slid in the ring to break it up. Pier Eight Brawl commenced as Langston body-charged Reigns, and Goldust clotheslined Reigns (and himself) over the top rope. Rollins tried a flying cross body to Langston, but Langston caught him, but Rollins slipped out and hit a dropkick to the back of Langston's head. Then Cody was there with a Disaster Kick to Rollins, followed up with an outside dive to take out Rollins and Reigns together.

DB alone with Ambrose for a moment, but Orton is still a factor. DB whiffs a flying kick, Ambrose tags out. Orton hits the Hangman's DDT, humps the ring, and readies to uncoil, as he does. Langston recovers and starts to sneak in behind Orton; Orton goes for the RKO on him, but Langston blocks and shoves him forward... right into a Daniel Bryan-delivered short-run Sagat Flying Tiger Knee. Orton slightly oversold it, but that's not an insult, since it makes the attack look even more dangerous.

Final Thoughts: To paraphrase Rick, the main event was 20 minutes of action in a 20-minute bag; Orton lagged a little, but because his dicking about was limited to one (1) spot, it worked for him. Even better, the main event absolutely erased the total mind-numbing boring bullshit of the preceding 100 minutes before it. I actually feel a little sorry for the people who tuned out early; while they were totally right to do so, they missed one hell of a main event. [Ed. Note: It's pretty much the exact same show as last week... a great main event, a little twist with Big E, and nothing else. Also: I'll just underscore how this match avoided almost ALL the elements that made matches among these players good. They broke from formula, as Cody didn't become the face in peril until really late in the match, and when he tagged, it wasn't the traditional hot tag, because Goldust flopped, and had to make the true hot tag to Bryan about 90 second later. I've got nothing against formula, as long as it's well executed... here, you had a well executed match hwere -- as a bonus -- you weren't really sure how they were gonna get from Point A to Point B.]

And, really, that's all I can say about the night. The main event did a great job promoting multiple stories while being awesome in and of itself, while the rest of the night was zero-value-add to anything else going on. And the overly frequent Cena promos did nothing but annoy me, rather than make me cheer for the guy. (And that last promo is going to haunt me for a week.)

Everything else I needed to say, I said already, and this is one of the rare nights when I'm actually done by 11pm. I have just enough time to do stuff tonight before bed!

Sunday night I'll be doing stuff around 11pm as well, specifically coming back to Online Onslaught to read Rick's recap of Hell in a Cell. If you want to kick a few bucks his way, consider Paypal, all major credit cards are totally accepted, and the more you give him, the less of a chance I'll take it upon myself to be a shill!

Episode Grade: A (main event), D+ (everything else)

 
E-MAIL PYROFALKON


  
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