The Good, The Bad and The Ugly
Writing a column is easy. You get a gimmick, and you write it. But the hardest part is thinking of something to write in the opening paragraph, a paragraph that is used to hype the column to make you click it. So here comes the hype: Please click the link and read the column. It’s really quite good. Be a nice person. For if you don’t click the column, a hundred kittens will die…
You have just saved 100 kittens.
Don’t forget, now it’s separate GB&Us for separate shows, giving you a complete overhaul of both RAW and SmackDown! . But also, mainly for filler space, I’ll be going through some news items and giving them a Good, Bad or Ugly rating as well.
Let’s go over to the Newsreel now, where Chris Dewing is standing. Chris?
Our top story today:
“World Wrestling Entertainment has broken all professional ties with Marty Jannetty.”
Short, sweet and to the point? It must be a work!
It isn’t. Marty has gone from the WWE, after what many are perceiving to be a result of not keeping a straight face during the Kiss My Ass segment on RAW. Marty was apparently scheduled to be involved in the HBK/Vince storyline more than his two appearances thus far. This now makes it four times that Marty has been released from the WWE, twice in under a year. Poor guy can’t catch a break, and this is certainly the most flimsy and pathetic excuse to release someone I’ve seen for a long time.
“After doing ratings in the mid-4s a few weeks ago, RAW did a 4.0 again last night. The show did hours of 3.9 and 4.1.”
Well to be honest, a steady rating above 4.0 is better than it going back into 3 territory. I’m actually hoping for the rating to be down next week to show Vince that the Kiss My Ass club is not a ratings draw.
“WWE profits in total are up 67%
Buys for PPV’s were up 6% from last year. Taboo Tuesday was up 24% from last year’s event.
Raw averages 5.5 million viewers, up 20% from when they were on Spike TV.
Smackdown is seen by 4.8 million viewers, and is big in males 18-24 and Hispanic households.
UPN’s Friday night viewing is up 95% with the addition of Smackdown.
They are in negotiations for a new deal with UPN.
Home video revenues are up 300% from last year. Bret’s DVD sold 178,000 units total.
The Undertaker DVD sold 217,000 units total, the #1 selling, non-PPV DVD ever..”
Just some random facts taken from this week’s WWE quarterly meeting. Obviously they’re going to focus more on the positive things than any negative news, but all of those confirm the incredibly strong financial position of the WWE right now.
“Tim White is at it again, this week trying to kill himself with mad cow disease. Go to WWE.com to see the video…”
I like the Tim White stuff. Call me an idiot, call me a bad wrestling fan, but I’m enjoying the little skits that are not taking up TV time or making someone look bad. Yeah, maybe their insensitive, but if you take them with a pinch of salt then it’s hardly spitting on someone’s grave. Plus Josh Matthews is SO good. THAT’S NOT WISE!
So a mixed week for the WWE news-wise, but some very good news financially wise. And now for the… MAILBAG??!!
TWO e-mails? Well, one and a half…
“Awesome. Just spiggin’ Awesome.
Keep up the great work. And ignore those morons who slate your column. Well…Bye.”
That’s from Matt Denton. I didn’t know any morons slated my column. I’m worried now.
Now for a proper e-mail from “Big” Craig Woolard.
“Ur column sucks! U is teh suck! lol.
Ok, really, it’s a pretty good column, it’s just an in thing to bash it much like WWE bashing is now.
The Stacy Keibler thing, what exactly could she do for WWE that Saturday Night Main Event can’t? Dancing With The Stars is over, so people won’t see her on TV for it anymore, but people that watch that channel will still see ads for SNME, and if they’re interested in watching wrestling, they’ll watch the show, which will advertise Mania. And to be fair, not that many people that watched Dancing With The Stars will be interested in wrestling, and if they are, they will most likely be watching.
And as far as her putting someone over, what exactly did she do for a win over her to mean something? And who exactly would she get over? Trish is over, Mickie is over, Ashley is over, Melina is over.(Not incredibly over, but over more than a win over Stacy would give them) Those are really the only ones that the WWE care about as far as wrestling goes, so she wouldn’t be great for putting someone over.
If she leaves the wrestling business, then I wish her the best of luck in whatever she chooses to do afterwards.
And I agree on everything you said about Carlito. He has improved so much since he debuted it’s not even funny. And it’s not just one aspect that’s improved, it’s all of them, from ringwork, to mic work, to playing his character. Carlito does, indeed, rule.
Oh, and I like how you put F’n in between the names of Trevor Murdoch and Rob Van Dam.”
Well when I mentioned Stacy putting someone over, I wasn’t really thinking of a match. I was more thinking of a segment where a heel comes out and insults her for losing the competition or something. But yeah, Stacy wrestling isn’t a good idea.
And of course Carlito is awesome. Thank you for your e-mail. Now it’s time to dissect SmackDown!
March 3rd, 2006 (taped February 27th)
Booker T vs. Tatanka
Hey, Booker gets a face pop! And constant face heat throughout the match! I’m willing to bet that’s down to his awesome commentary. Sharmell’s commentary wasn’t bad either, she’s certainly moved several steps forward since I couldn’t stand her in mid-2005. Her heel chemistry with her husband makes her so much more interesting. The match itself was pretty good considering the lack of time and Tatanka. And then came the BOOGEYMAN~! He is so awesome. And Booker/Sharmell’s job of selling Boogeyman’s presence is awesome too. Plus it furthered the feud towards SNME/WM22. So all in all, a fun and useful segment.
Randy Orton vs. Super Crazy
Having not seen a lot of Super Crazy pre-WWE, his athleticism and ability continue to amaze me every time I see him. This instance was no different, as he really did look superb out there in everything he did, be it springboard dropkicks, planchas, and even just basic selling of Orton’s moves. Speaking of Orton, his new music is dreadful, which is a step up from “completely dreadful” for his old music. You know, the one talking about how upset he is after his girlfriend dumped him. Orton was always going to win the match, but hopefully Crazy managed to show enough of what he can do in just five minutes to warrant some kind of push in the cruiserweight division.
Benoit video, JBL v Benoit announcement
Two awesome things in one segment. One, a great video about Benoit showing just how tough he really is, and of course how awesome he is. And THEN we get the announcement of JBL v Benoit, which not only means JBL’s hand is fixed, but that we’re going to get one hell of a good match between the two at WrestleMania 22. Of course, there’s the fact that JBL was defending the WWE Title at WrestleMania 21, but sometimes its best not to think about it.
MNM vs. Hardy and Animal
We all knew Animal was going to be a Hardy tag team partner at some point, and unfortunately, it’s come around. The match was your standard MNM tag team match, which is always of a high calibre. To give credit to Hardy he has started bringing in some new moves, such as the double DDT/reverse DDT combination. He’s a good tag team wrestler, and in the unlikely event he ever gets a push with a decent partner, say CM Punk, a feud between them and MNM would be electric. The Animal heel turn really didn’t appeal to me, and I really don’t like the prospect of Animal vs. Hardy at either SNME or WrestleMania.
Mean Gene Okerlund to be inducted into the Hall of Fame
Already mentioned in my RAW report, but I thought Cole and Tazz trying to be “surprised” was bizarre. I’m also annoyed that Hogan is getting more coverage than BRET.
Lashley vs. Finlay
Wow. This segment was all kinds of awesome from the match to the brawl. The match was tough, physical and stiff, Lashley looks to be improving a lot and being in the ring with FINLAY can only make him better. Then we had the brawl sequence, a sequence that was so well done that the crowd were absolutely red hot throughout it. It was a believable staged sequence which is so often not the case when it comes to wrestling brawls, and it did a brilliant job of building up the feud, showing just how much these two guys hate each other. Hoping for a gimmicked re-match some time soon.
As a Brit, I automatically think that Birchall and Regal are awesome. But Regal’s acting is so good it can make anyone look great. Burchill on the other hand seems to be getting so much stick from the Internet writers for his gimmick. Well I like the gimmick, it makes someone who may not have the charisma or mic skills to make a name for himself stand out in the crowd. I really do wish people would stop hating gimmicks like Birchall and the Boogeyman so much, lose their smarky negative instinct and begin to enjoy wrestling for what it is again. Birchall wrestling next week will certainly be interesting, as we’ll see just where they’re going.
WWE Title Match
Kurt Angle © vs. The Undertaker
How often does a TV match get given 45 minutes? Not very. Although, to be fair, it was only 40 minutes by the time Taker had finished his ridiculously long entrance. I didn’t get the opportunity to write my appreciation of their match at No Way Out, so I’ll just say that it was good, very good. Better than an Undertaker match has any right to be. And this match again brought so many different kinds of new spots that it can easily be classed as a different match instead of a re-match. I have no idea what it is about The Undertaker, but he seems to wrestle better when he LOSES than when he WINS. It doesn’t even look like Angle is carrying him, he really does seem able to have good matches when he tries his hardest. Of course, he spent a total of about five minutes in the Ankle Lock including No Way Out without tapping, but we need to take small steps. The finish was obvious if you knew the WrestleMania 22 rumours, and the DQ ending does kinda take the edge off it. But it was still a really good contest and a tribute to both Angle and Taker’s ability to have two very good matches with each other in the space of 2 weeks.
Mark Henry splashes The Undertaker
Mark Henry is getting so much more agile, so much more interesting and so much BETTER since his return to SmackDown!, it’s actually scary to think how bad he has been in the past. But this is an example of his new found agility, a guy his size leaping from one announce table to another is incredible. As a spectacle it was awesome, and as a booking decision, it gives the feud a HUGE boost, it makes Henry look like a legitimate threat to Taker’s WM record, and it leaves a strong impact in the minds of the viewers, who will watch again next week to see Henry get his comeuppance. Dusty is God.
So, overall we have:
So that makes it almost a perfect show. And considering how much I enjoyed watching it, I’m not surprised at all. It really was a great show from start to finish, lots of fun matches, great angle and feud development, a great TV main event and Boogeyman. Can you ask for anything more?
So that was the second edition of the NEW FORMAT Good, Bad and Ugly. Got an opinion on anything? Let me know right here:
And I will see you next week for the RAW review. Take care amigos.