BRM Reviews the 10/4/2019 Smackdown (Fox debut failure)

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Big Red Machine
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BRM Reviews the 10/4/2019 Smackdown (Fox debut failure)

Post by Big Red Machine » Oct 5th, '19, 17:41

VINCE & STEPH SHOW UP TO SHOUT AT US- This is exactly the sort of thing that WWE does that drives me nuts. I do not need a f*cking pep-talk from Vince and Steph to let me know that something is important (or, in WWE-speak, “historic!”). A competent wrestling company would be able to make that clear via building something up. And as for new viewers who may be tuning in and won’t have seen any of the build, I think giving them an exciting match or a compelling promo is going to do a lot more to convince them to stay round then having people come out just to shout “THIS IS HISTORIC!” “WELCOME TO FOX!” “AND WELCOME TO FRIDAY NIGHT SMACKDOWN!” at them.

NEW INTRO- I don’t like the music at all “ARE YOU READY FOR A GOOD TIME?!” Really?), but the video is relatively cool.

Michael Cole said “fans” and not “members of the WWE Universe,” so we’re off on the right foot.


(NOT REALLY THE) OPENING SEGMENT- HORRENDOUS!
The first wrestler we see on the new era of Smackdown is… the RAW Women’s Champion. She says she wants to kick someone’s ass. She then gets interrupted by Baron Corbin, who is himself interrupted by The Rock, who got a pop that blew Becky’s away, which made one of today’s top stars look totally secondary. BY the way, we’ve now seen five people so far, and none of them are Smackdown wrestlers.
Rock accused Corbin of doing crack and of “looking like a thirty-five-year-old virgin hanging around at Comicon.” Um… Rock? I hate to break it to you, but a large percentage on WWE’s fanbase as well as a significant portion of the actual wrestlers themselves really enjoy Comicon. You douchebag.
The Rock, who has probably made his last appearance for the next few years unless he has a movie to promote, dominated the segment. Jokes were made about testicles and STDs. Becky did The Rock’s catchphrase because he’s the big star so that’s how we get a pop. Then Rock told Corbin that both he and Becky were going to beat him up. Corbin did not back down one bit, and his opponents- supposedly the babyfaces- beat him up two against one. There goes all of Baron Corbin’s heat. I sure am glad we wasted it on someone who isn’t going to be around every week… or every month… or even every YEAR.
In addition to all of that, this segment sucked because it was so forced. This was the kind of segment WWE would come up with if they had designed a segment in a laboratory for the purposes of maximizing the number of pops for the babyface and nothing else. Compare this to the first segment we saw on AEW. Putting Cody out there was clearly designed to get a huge pop at the beginning of the show, but his presence SERVED A PURPOSE TO THE STORYLINES. He was out there for a match, which created a reason for him to be in the ring and also exhausted when Jericho attacked him, as well as giving him a win to help justify the title shot at Jericho he will surely be getting soon, and exposing the audience to Guevara, and to set up Guevara’s dislike of Cody, which, when combined with the Cody/Jericho issue, would play into the aftermath of the main event. Even on the NXT USA debut two weeks ago they started off with an important match that they knew would get big pops because of the names involved. What WWE gave us here was the equivalent of turning on the “applause” sign for fifteen minutes.

Only after that nonsense do we run down the card full of big matches. I like the graphic of the arena with the digital fans inside, but I absolutely hate the graphics they have that float over the actual crowd. It crosses that line from cool into completely unnecessary.

BECKY LYNCH & CHARLOTTE FLAIR vs. SASHA BANKS & BAYLEY- 6.5/10
Normally this would have been fine, but if you’re trying to make a big first impression, you need to give us something more than this (and I place the blame here thoroughly on WWE for not giving this the time it needed). If only we hadn’t wasted fifteen minutes in the beginning of the show. Charlotte makes Bayley tap out clean, which should set up a title shot at the PPV on Sunday.

ERIN ANDREWS INTERVIEWS THE NEW DAY- Great!
Mostly for Kofi’s promo about being the underdog, but it also effectively established that Woods & Big E. will not be at ringside for the main event per Kofi’s request, in order to give Brock no excuses.

There will be draft on next week’s show, and then continuing on Raw. The good news is that they actually said “draft,” although the phrase “shake-up” was used several times, too.

FIREFLY FUNHOUSE- dull and uninteresting
The rabbit likes Set so Bray locks it in a cage with the buzzard, which kills it (again), then Bray says menacing things. Whatever. I’m immune to Bray Wyatt showing up on the TitanTron and saying menacing things at this point.

Can we please knock it off with the legends at ringside? So far, they’ve shown Hogan, Flair, Angle, Foley, Trish, Lita, and probably some others that I’ve dozed off for. We all know that you’re flying them in to make the show look important and unlike an indy wrestler in the crowd on NXT, their presence here means nothing. I highly doubt many of them would be here if they weren’t being paid for the appearance.

SETH ROLLINS vs. SHINSUKE NAKAMURA (w/Sami Zayn)- no rating, frustrating segment
They did just enough stuff for me to get excited about the fact that this is TYLER BLACK VS. SHINSUKE NAKAMURA… and then Bray Wyatt magic happened and ruined the match. Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: Bray magically makes the lights go out, then teleports behind his opponent and attacks him. But this time there is a spooky sound effect and Bray is wearing a mask, so it’s totally not the same thing we’ve been seeing for the past six years. Bray through Seth off the stage, but no one could see that because the f*cking lights were off and the camera was focused on Bray’s face. That’s some sh*tty production right there.

CAREER VS. CAREER LADDER MATCH: Kevin Owens vs. Shane McMahon- 7.5/10
A great “big spots” ladder match, with Owens coming out on top, so the nightmare is over and Shane is gone. Owens stunning him after the match was excessive, though.

KAYLA BRAXTON NERVOUSLY WAITS TO INTERVIEW BROCK LESNAR- The unspoken bit here was that Kayla is afraid that Brock will assault her like he did to Rey Mysterio Jr.’s son on Raw. That’s not an irrational fear… which just makes me wonder why WWE didn’t insist that the interview be conducted via sky for the protection of not just Kayla but also the various lighting and camera people who work alongside her to do produce the interviews.

KAYLA BRAXTON INTERVIEWS PAUL HEYMAN- great promo by Heyman to build up the main event

Okay… Cole has now said “WWE Universe” twice. So much for my dreams of that horrible phrase going the way of the dinosaur.

BRAUN STROWMAN, HEAVY MACHINERY, & THE MIZ vs. AJ STYLES, DOLPH ZIGGLER, RANDY ORTON, & ROBERT ROODE- 2/10
Braun wan into people. I’m not even sure Heavy Machinery came out for this match, because they didn’t do anything in this match. Braun got distracted by Tyson Fury at ringside several times but still managed to get the win, pinning one half of the Raw Tag Team Champions, which just makes me wonder why some other team wasn’t out here instead of them, or why this wasn’t a ten-man tag so someone who isn’t a champion or a protected star could take the fall.

POST-MATCH SEGMENT- fine
Oh. There are Heavy Machinery. Otis is wrestling in a Speedo. I didn’t need to see that. Tyson Fury jumped the guardrail and was immediately swarmed by security, as well he should be.

YOUTUBE CHANNEL GOOFINESS WITH THE 24/7 TITLE- stupid and goofy, but at least it was short
LUMBERJACK MATCH: Roman Reigns vs. Erick Rowan- 4/10
Daniel Bryan provided guest commentary. Lumberjack stuff happened until Luke Harper decided to come down the ramp and attack people. Apparently these matches are no DQs so Harper could just waltz into the ring and attack Roman. Bryan came to help but got caught by Rowan. Roman saved Bryan from the Claw Slam with a spear, then pinned Erick Rowan to get his revenge right here tonight, so why should I care about their match at the PPV?

POST-MATCH SEGMENT- fine
Bryan offered Roman a handshake and Roman accepted, solidifying their team at the PPV.

WWE WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE MATCH: Kofi Kingston(c) vs. Brock Lesnar (w/Paul Heyman)- DUD!
Kofi went for Trouble in Paradise but Brock caught him and hit him with an F-5 for the win. That was the entire match. Now get ready for the fourth round of “Brock is the champion but he hates actually showing up to do his job.” F*ck this company.

POST-MATCH SEGMENT- snore
Rey Mysterio Jr. can’t fight his own battles, so he’s brought in Cain Velasquez for fight for him. What is this, 2013 TNA where we have to appease the network by having MMA stars fight each other on our pro wrestling show? Cain took Brock down, but Brock quickly got away from him and retreated up the ramp. I have absolutely no interest in seeing Brock Lesnar vs. Cain Velasquez in a pro wrestling match.


This was a bad show from WWE. There was a point in the middle where it felt like the opening segment was just something we had to get past and then things would be good from then on out, but the last half hour or so of the show really killed any positive feelings I had. This felt like a show where their goal was to hit certain big spots rather than put on an entertaining and exciting pro wrestling show. Killing Kofi with just one F-5 was a TERRIBLE idea, and doubly so if the reason we’re putting the belt back on Brock was just going to be do a pro wrestling feud between MMA guys. This did very little to build up the PPV in a few days, and most of what it did do had no positive effect on my desire to see the PPV. All they’ve got plugged for next week’s show is the draft, which I can just get the results of online or get a recap of by watching the following Raw when the draft is completed, so they haven’t actually done anything to get me to watch next week’s show, which is pretty much the exact opposite of what they needed to do.


Hold #712: ARM BAR!

Upcoming Reviews:
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