BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

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Big Red Machine
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BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by Big Red Machine » Apr 23rd, '19, 21:26

OPENING SEGMENT- effective, I guess
Shane McMahon came out and did a good job at being a hypocrite by calling Roman a terrible person for attacking someone’s father, but just because Shane is being a hypocrite does not mean Roman was in any way morally correct to attack Vince (not to mention Elias) the way he did.
Shane teases fining or firing Roman, and about 40% of the crowd seems like they’d be happy with that, and a good chunk of the rest didn’t seem to care one way or the other (my estimate would be 40% anti-Roman, 40% pro-Roman, 20% apathetic).
Shane orders Roman to come out, so Roman does. Roman brings a mic with him, then throws it away. Shane throws his mic away as well. The Drifter tried to attack Roman from behind but Roman saw it coming and thwarted him, but this allowed Shane to attack Roman from behind. Roman made a comeback and beat up on Shane until The Drifter came back and they beat Roman down and The Drifter hit Roman with Drift Away. This succeeded in getting the desired crowd reaction, although it wasn’t particularly strong (it seemed like the pro-Roman people were reacting while everyone else was just being quiet). Still, people weren’t cheering Roman getting beaten up, so I have to say the segment was rather effective for the crowd in building… but personally, Roman deserved everything he got for coming out and attacking Vince and The Drifter for no reason last week.

SHANE & THE DRIFTER BACKSTAGE- They pat each other on the back about beating Roman up and suggest that they might do it again. This was a waste of time.

KAYLA BRAXTON INTERVIEWS KOFI KINGSTON- Kofi cut a very good babyface promo about getting support from the crowd. Woods showed up and they talked about Big E. being injured and Owens taking his place in New Day. Catchphrases were said.
This was all fine, except that immediately prior to this they had shown us a recap of all of last week’s silliness with Owens being initiated into New Day because Big E. is injured, so Kofi taking the time to then explain all of that to us right after the video package was a waste of time. This is now the second time that they have had the announcers tell us something, then immediately proceeded to have someone relay that same information to us in an interview.

ANDRADE ALMAS & ZELINA VEGA PROMO- good
Vega’s opening line about how Balor “tried to run away from us” would have been great if there had been some sort of storyline explanation for them coming back to Smackdown that involved them asking to go back to SD because Andrade pinned the champion and therefore deserves a title match.

FINN BALOR vs. ANDRADE “CIEN” ALMAS (w/Zelina Vega)- 6.75/10
They had a very good match with a soul-crushing finish. Said finish was Balor avoiding Vega’s attempt to interfere and beating Andrade clean, completely undoing everything that happened last week and stamping Andrade with the stench of “midcarder for life,” as instead of do something to build a feud that could elevate him, they run as fast as they can in the opposite direction.

THE DRIFTER SINGS A PROMO BACKSTAGE- He challenges Roman to a singles match at MITB. Then he and Shane leave in a limo.

FIRE & DESIRE CONFRONT PAIGE EARLIER TODAY- They’re jealous that Paige is managing someone else.

KAIRI SANE (w/Asuka & Paige) vs. PEYTON ROYCE (w/Billie Kay)- 0.5/10
The IIconics cut their typical annoying promo before the match. Peyton got in almost no offense and was pinned cleanly in just over a minute and a half. After the match, Fire & Desire came out on the stage and had a big stare-down with Paige, Kairi, & Asuka, while the WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions lay forgotten in the background.

Then Jinder Mahal and the Singh Brothers came out and interrupted all of this because Jinder is scheduled to face Chad Gable next. I know what you’re thinking, and, yes, Jinder did used to be on Raw, but apparently “the Superstar Shake-up is still in effect” tonight, which totally goes against the way they built up last week’s shows. Then again, this is a company whose big annual push for Survivor Series is predicated on the claim that it is “the only time of the year when Superstars™ from Raw and Smackdown Live face off in head to head competition,” even though they have several major matches a year like Royal Rumble and MITB where exactly that happens (and that not even counting every time they randomly decide to just ignore their own rules and have someone from one show appear on the other anyway).

ALEISTER BLACK PROMO- okay… I guess?
He’s sitting in a chair against a totally black background. He said stuff that definitively makes him feel like a deep character, but he also didn’t really say much that gives us any sort of clue about him.

Also, why did they feel the need to have Jinder come out and take focus away from what should have been an important moment in the stare-down between Paige’s new team and her old team if his match wasn’t even going to start right after the commercial?

Okay… this whole “the Superstar Shake-up is still in effect” verbiage is really bothering me. It’s pathetically clunky, and the reason for that is because it has been so ill-defined that WWE doesn’t even have enough of an idea of what it is to be able to apply a proper adjective to it. Things that you can describe as being “in effect” are rules or advisories. Things that either fundamentally change something about the nature of the situation, or advise you to consider changing your own behavior due to the outside factor you are being warned about. When a hockey game goes into overtime, sudden death rules are then “in effect.” Something about the fundamental nature of the game has changed (before overtime, you keep playing after a goal is scored until three periods are over, once overtime starts, a goal now ends the game, and the scored-on team is not given any change to catch up). Or when a weather advisory like a tornado warning is “in effect,” it means the government is suggesting that you act in a certain manner (in this case, like a tornado is coming) and while they can’t force you to go to your storm cellar, they are urging you to at least consider whether whatever you want to do at the moment is worth the possibility of dying via a tornado.
The Superstar Shake-up is probably best defined as a temporary suspension of certain rules so that the powers that be (within kayfabe) can make corrective changes. You could argue that a temporary suspension of certain rules is, in essence, the creation of a new temporary rule and thus the “in effect” phrase is still valid… and if the wrestlers were shown to have some agency in deciding to switch brands then I would agree with you, but that is absolutely not the case.
The Superstar Shake-up only happens because the McMahons have decided to make it happen. They pick the dates and they pick who goes from where to where. And yet the portrayal of the Superstar Shake-up is as if the Superstar Shake-up is this mystical event that allows the wrestlers to switch shows, when the reality of it (both in kayfabe and outside of it) is that Jinder is now on Smackdown because the McMahons told him he is on Smackdown and the “Superstar Shake-up” is just the goofy branding term they came up with the show when such things happen. After all, if the Superstar Shake-up is “still in effect” tonight then it must have been in effect last night on Raw, too, but no one switched shows then. Joe and Claudio were portrayed as having been drafted to last week, but WWE just decided to not tell us about it until now. After all, we never heard last night’s announcers tell us that “the Superstar Shake-up is still in effect.” It just exposes the whole thing as something they came up with as emergency damage-control because they realized they did such a sh*tty job last week that they wanted to make a bunch of changes this week. So as a result they have to come up with this stupid, clunky phrase that no normal human would ever come up with, and all because they have this insane aversion to just coming out and telling the kayfabe truth and allowing the Superstar Shake-up to be portrayed as the only kayfabe mechanism that it makes any sense for it to be.

Yeah, a long tangent about semantics. I know. But you should know what my reviews are like at this point.

CHAD GABLE vs. JINDER MAHAL (w/the Singh Brothers)- no rating fine segment
Lars Sullivan attacks Gable from behind and takes him out, then he goes after Jinder & the Singh Brothers as well. R-Truth comes out to fight Lars and gets his butt kicked, but G-d dammit when his music played and he came out and took his jacket off and put his “I’m here to fight” face on, R-Truth looked like a big f*cking babyface, and even when Lars was beating him up, there were people chanting R-TRUTH! R-TRUTH! R-TRUTH!” I wasn’t thrilled with Gable getting buried like this, but I thought the segment accomplished its goal rather well.

KAYLA BRAXTON INTERVIEWS ROMAN REIGNS- Roman cut a good promo accepting The Drifter’s challenge. More importantly, he was actually selling the beating he took!

CHARLOTTE FLAIR & BECKY LYNCH SEGMENT- meh
Charlotte comes out and complains that she lost her title without getting pinned. Everyone remember how both Charlotte getting added to the Mania main event in the first place and her being granted a Smackdown Women’s Title match to be able to win that title so it could be put on the line in that match were portrayed as evidence of the McMahons showing favoritism towards Charlotte? Well if they love Charlotte so much then why did they have her title also be on the line in that match?
Becky Lynch came out and they yelled at each other. Becky said she wanted Charlotte to get out of the way for the likes of Bayley, Mickie James, etc. Bayley came out and buried this segment for the same reason most people did when WWE began advertising it last week: This is supposed to be a freshening up of the product, but they’re still giving us Becky vs. Charlotte, even though we’ve been seeing it for the past eight months now.
Bayley said Becky has never beaten her. Charlotte and Bayley cut promos on each other. Bayley suggested they have a match now. Charlotte said Bayley wasn’t worth her time so Bayley slapped the mic out of her hand and the crowd gasped… and we went to a f*cking commercial. When we got back from the commercial, we saw…

A COMMERCIAL FOR MAKE-A-WISH- I have no problem with WWE airing these commercials because Make-A-Wish is a wonderful organization, but I do have a problem with WWE thinking it was a good idea to place it at this point in the show, and doubly so to both show it live in the arena and to bring us back to the arena to see that all of their LED board were turned in Make-A-Wish graphics and the friendly-but-inspirational music from the commercial was playing in the building. It completely obliterated the heated atmosphere that existed before we went to a commercial. Over the course of the past year this company appears to have lost all common sense when it comes to what to put on before and after a commercial in order to not hurt the atmosphere or make the show feel ridiculously scripted and overproduced. It’s really truly amazing how much they’ve digressed.

#1 CONTENDERSHIP MATCH: Charlotte Flair vs. Bayley- 6.75/10
Charlotte won clean after a spear… so after having Bayley tell us that the idea of another Becky vs. Charlotte match would be stale, they’re going to give us one.

KAYLA BRAXTON INTERVIEWS BECKY LYNCH- apparently both of Becky’s title defenses will take place at MITB. I agree with Kayla that Becky seems WAY overconfident.

FIREFLY FUNHOUSE- Same segment as last night. They made the mistake of showing us the crowd during this. They appeared to be just as dumbfounded as I was when I saw this last night.

They keep pushing the main event as Kofi’s “first singles match on Smackdown since WrestleMania,” as if this is somehow a big deal. Mania was a mere sixteen days ago., and since then we’ve seen Kofi wrestle twice on Smackdown in tag matches, and even saw him wrestle a singles match on Raw. Do they really think people get excited when they hype things up by trying to make mountains out of molehills like this? How about hypoing the match up by letting the wrestlers cut promos about it?

SHINSUKE NAKAMURA (w/Rusev & Lana) vs. KOFI KINGSTON (w/The New Day)- 6.75/10
The New Day commentary table gimmick is back. Unlike when Big E. was on commentary with Woods, Owens and Woods were very good, and made me wish I could hear them call the whole match instead of Tom, Byron, and Graves.
They had a very good match that was just starting to really kick up into gear when Rusev ran in for the DQ. People hit moves and took each other out. Kofi saved Owens from a Kinshasa then put Nakamura down with Trouble in Paradise.
Then Owens turned on Kofi and beat the sh*t out of him. The angle here was good enough and the DQ felt necessary to set up the chaos to lead to it in a manner that was both surprising and organic, so I’ll give them a pass on the DQ in a main event. This was a great angle that it’s worth your time to go out of your way to make sure you see.

This was a rather frustrating episode of Smackdown to watch, but most the angles they did were very effective, so I’ll give in and call it a decent show.


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Re: BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by KILLdozer » Apr 23rd, '19, 22:10

That kinda seems rushed but not bad necessarily...

Joins then turns the literal next week...I get that it was "the first very chance I got, I kicked his was!"...but wow lol.
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Re: BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by cero2k » Apr 23rd, '19, 22:20

KILLdozer wrote:
Apr 23rd, '19, 22:10
That kinda seems rushed but not bad necessarily...

Joins then turns the literal next week...I get that it was "the first very chance I got, I kicked his was!"...but wow lol.
100% this. way to build anticipation, couldn't even wait for Big E to return to do any mystery, it's not like there are a ton other people that can go for the title, not like they care about building contenders anyway

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Re: BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by Big Red Machine » Apr 23rd, '19, 23:21

cero2k wrote:
Apr 23rd, '19, 22:20
KILLdozer wrote:
Apr 23rd, '19, 22:10
That kinda seems rushed but not bad necessarily...

Joins then turns the literal next week...I get that it was "the first very chance I got, I kicked his was!"...but wow lol.
100% this. way to build anticipation, couldn't even wait for Big E to return to do any mystery, it's not like there are a ton other people that can go for the title, not like they care about building contenders anyway
Are there others, though? Rusev and Nakamura have been turned into midcarders so it would feel like a midcard feud for the title. Bryan is supposedly injured and if Orton is taking time off then Owens is the only choice.
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Re: BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by KILLdozer » Apr 23rd, '19, 23:51

Big Red Machine wrote:
Apr 23rd, '19, 23:21
cero2k wrote:
Apr 23rd, '19, 22:20
KILLdozer wrote:
Apr 23rd, '19, 22:10
That kinda seems rushed but not bad necessarily...

Joins then turns the literal next week...I get that it was "the first very chance I got, I kicked his was!"...but wow lol.
100% this. way to build anticipation, couldn't even wait for Big E to return to do any mystery, it's not like there are a ton other people that can go for the title, not like they care about building contenders anyway
Are there others, though? Rusev and Nakamura have been turned into midcarders so it would feel like a midcard feud for the title. Bryan is supposedly injured and if Orton is taking time off then Owens is the only choice.
Then efficiently build others in the meantime. That's also only their fault for not caring about anyone else anyways...as always and usual...
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Re: BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by KILLdozer » Apr 23rd, '19, 23:52

So Sullivan's dropping 5 at once now....

Puh-lease!
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Re: BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by Bob-O » Apr 24th, '19, 05:29

Big Red Machine wrote:
Apr 23rd, '19, 23:21
cero2k wrote:
Apr 23rd, '19, 22:20
KILLdozer wrote:
Apr 23rd, '19, 22:10
That kinda seems rushed but not bad necessarily...

Joins then turns the literal next week...I get that it was "the first very chance I got, I kicked his was!"...but wow lol.
100% this. way to build anticipation, couldn't even wait for Big E to return to do any mystery, it's not like there are a ton other people that can go for the title, not like they care about building contenders anyway
Are there others, though? Rusev and Nakamura have been turned into midcarders so it would feel like a midcard feud for the title. Bryan is supposedly injured and if Orton is taking time off then Owens is the only choice.
This is why they can't make new stars...

They're so quick to pull the trigger on EVERYTHING! Nakamura, Rusev, or even Jinder would have been fine for Kofi's first program while they built more than a week's worth of New Day Kev for us to actually be pissed about. They should have built up Kofi vs Nakamura and went about exactly what happened here at MITB. That at least gives us a few weeks to say "That SOB! They trusted him! He was their friend!", because I don't care at this point... I mean we were literally just talking about who was going to turn, nobody trusted the situation.

Unpopular opinion, but I feel like Kofi is a midcard champion anyway... beating the other midcarders in defenses is what he should be doing...
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Re: BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by cero2k » Apr 24th, '19, 08:34

Big Red Machine wrote:
Apr 23rd, '19, 23:21

Are there others, though? Rusev and Nakamura have been turned into midcarders so it would feel like a midcard feud for the title. Bryan is supposedly injured and if Orton is taking time off then Owens is the only choice.
not to repeat what Bob-O said, but Kofi was JUST having a match with Nakamura when the angle happened, why not just not have Nak pin Kofi on that match and start a story about "was Kofi's win a fluke" story and then he defends against Nakamura, Rusev, Jinder while either Dragon or Big E returns.

If Kofi is a fighting champion and a babyface, he should give Ali a match since he took his spot and he should show that it wasn't all meant to be Ali's destiny.

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Re: BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by KILLdozer » Apr 24th, '19, 10:29

I think Bailey runs in at the Mitb match with Charlotte...then again...I see lots happening before then. It could even turn into a triple threat. Fuck it, come on back real soon now ya hear Sasha...gang's all here.
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Re: BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by KILLdozer » Apr 24th, '19, 11:23

Yeah you could easily build up both Nakamura and Rusev into contenders between now and MITB. Mahal...just no. No.
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Re: BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by Big Red Machine » Apr 24th, '19, 11:24

cero2k wrote:
Apr 24th, '19, 08:34
Big Red Machine wrote:
Apr 23rd, '19, 23:21

Are there others, though? Rusev and Nakamura have been turned into midcarders so it would feel like a midcard feud for the title. Bryan is supposedly injured and if Orton is taking time off then Owens is the only choice.
not to repeat what Bob-O said, but Kofi was JUST having a match with Nakamura when the angle happened, why not just not have Nak pin Kofi on that match and start a story about "was Kofi's win a fluke" story and then he defends against Nakamura, Rusev, Jinder while either Dragon or Big E returns.

If Kofi is a fighting champion and a babyface, he should give Ali a match since he took his spot and he should show that it wasn't all meant to be Ali's destiny.
Because Nakamura vs. Kofi would feel like a midcard feud if you do it that way. Ditto Ali. You need to give those guys some build first. This is a fine first feud for Kofi that immediately creates a main event heel, which is something that Smackdown otherwise doesn't have at the moment.
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Re: BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by Big Red Machine » Apr 24th, '19, 11:26

KILLdozer wrote:
Apr 24th, '19, 11:23
Yeah you could easily build up both Nakamura and Rusev into contenders between now and MITB. Mahal...just no. No.
And do what in the meantime. WWE's way of doing things is to get the world title match out there as quickly as possible.
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Re: BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by cero2k » Apr 24th, '19, 11:31

Big Red Machine wrote:
Apr 24th, '19, 11:24

Because Nakamura vs. Kofi would feel like a midcard feud if you do it that way. Ditto Ali. You need to give those guys some build first. This is a fine first feud for Kofi that immediately creates a main event heel, which is something that Smackdown otherwise doesn't have at the moment.
i'm finding it hard to excuse if they just did a shake up and could have debuted anyone as a bigger heel deal, Elias could had come up beating up Kofi instead of getting taken out by Reigns on his first night. i'm only asking for the Owens turn to have warmed up longer in the pot before serving it

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Re: BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by KILLdozer » Apr 24th, '19, 11:43

"R-Truth comes and gets his BUTT kicked"?

How old are we? Lol
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Re: BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by Big Red Machine » Apr 24th, '19, 12:51

KILLdozer wrote:
Apr 24th, '19, 11:43
"R-Truth comes and gets his BUTT kicked"?

How old are we? Lol
I thought it worked better in the sentence.
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Re: BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by Big Red Machine » Apr 25th, '19, 13:57

From the Observer:
Dave Meltzer wrote:The original plan for Owens was to be a guy next door babyface, who ate junk food, had the same problems everyone else had, had kids, but could kick ass and was given the ultimate modern WWE babyface finisher, the stone cold stunner (which at one point they were testing Becky Lynch out with at house shows).

Bryan was set to get a rematch with Kingston at Money in the Bank, but with him out of action, they needed a new opponent. The choices were Randy Orton, Rowan (who is lacking the charisma on his own to be top heel), or bringing over Drew McIntyre, Baron Corbin or Samoa Joe for Raw, who all had things figured in. A few days after Mania, the decision was made to turn Owens and put him in that spot, with the tease at first of him joining The New Day, after Big E’s knee went out and he needed surgery.
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Re: BRM Reviews the 4/23/2019 Smackdown

Post by KILLdozer » Apr 25th, '19, 14:46

Big Red Machine wrote:
Apr 25th, '19, 13:57
From the Observer:
Dave Meltzer wrote:The original plan for Owens was to be a guy next door babyface, who ate junk food, had the same problems everyone else had, had kids, but could kick ass and was given the ultimate modern WWE babyface finisher, the stone cold stunner (which at one point they were testing Becky Lynch out with at house shows).

Bryan was set to get a rematch with Kingston at Money in the Bank, but with him out of action, they needed a new opponent. The choices were Randy Orton, Rowan (who is lacking the charisma on his own to be top heel), or bringing over Drew McIntyre, Baron Corbin or Samoa Joe for Raw, who all had things figured in. A few days after Mania, the decision was made to turn Owens and put him in that spot, with the tease at first of him joining The New Day, after Big E’s knee went out and he needed surgery.
Of course. Rowan "lacks charisma" , but thought about "bringing over Baron Corbin"....


.....


.....

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