The Good, The Bad and The Ugly
One of the most common questions in wrestling is; which do you prefer, RAW or SmackDown!? Well this week’s shows could probably answer the question for most people, as after a despicably bad RAW we come to a SmackDown! full of momentum after a great show last week. But can this one continue the run of good shows? Time to find out…
Don’t forget, now it’s separate GB&Us for separate shows, giving you a complete overhaul of both RAW and SmackDown!. Each segment will be rated, either Good, Bad, Ugly, or None. Extremely good or extremely bad segments will be rated with “Very Good” or “Very Bad”, which will add two points to the final tallies instead of one. 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 to catch up with all the news since Wednesday.
Our top story today:
“WWE.com has posted that the company has come to terms on the releases of all the Junior Division wrestlers (Mascarita Sagrada, Tsuki, Pequeno Violencia, Octagoncito, Piratita Morgan and Super Porky).”
NOT THE JUNIORS! OK, so all smarks hated them because it wasn’t proper wrestling, no good would come of it, blah blah blah, whine whine whine, but for the five minutes of TV they got occasionally I thought they were quite fun. Obviously they would never have had good matches as your regular wrestlers, but it was something different. I just wish they’d have been given REAL matches instead of doing comedy spots. Just because they’re small doesn’t mean they’re children. And we never got to see Super Porky compete. For shame.
“Raw scored a 4.0 cable rating, with a 6.0 share, with hours of 3.9 and 4.1. This is the third week in a row that Raw has scored a 4.0. RAW has yet to get back to the ratings they drew during Edge’s WWE Title run..”
I’m not going to comment on the whole Edge stuff because it’s just going to be what I’ve said again and again, so I’ll just say the same as last week, anything above a 4.0 is a good rating right now, but some gradual improvement would be nice.
“At both the TV Tapings this week, Chuck Palumbo worked dark matches. It is not known if WWE have offered him a contract.”
I know Chuck’s been working some AJPW dates, as well as for Rikishi’s promotion in Italy. Palumbo’s always been one of those guys who REALLY needed a gimmick to get him somewhere, and when he got the gimmick with Billy, he was over. I can’t see him getting a new contract purely because roster cut season is coming up, and I don’t see what he can add that someone else on the roster can’t.
“Tim White is at it again, this week trying to kill himself with a phone line. Go to WWE.com to see the video..”
Oh this one was so good. When you get a catchphrase that’s funny, MODIFYING the catchphrase slightly can make it funnier. And that’s what Josh Matthews did, with a “Mr. White, THAT DOESN’T SOUND WISE!”. Genuine laughter came from me after that.
“It was revealed today that Vince McMahon’s personal assistant Beth Zazza has left the WWE.”
Many people are building this departure up as something that will shake the WWE to its very epicentre and possibly spell the downfall of the WWE as the #1 company in the world. I personally see it as Vince McMahon’s PA leaving the company, and another one will be hired soon. I hear Miss T is a good PA. I’m sure it’s a big loss, but nowhere near as big as is being made out.
“It has been reported that WWE Diva Mickie James has gotten engaged to Ken Doane from the Spirit Squad. Mickie is seven years older then him.”
As someone who doesn’t really like gossip stuff I really shouldn’t care about this. But Ken Doane is so awesome and Mickie is so hot that it’s hard not to. Congratulations to the two of them.
So a mixed week for the WWE news-wise, but some very good news for certain individuals. And now, time for SmackDown!
March 10th, 2006 (taped March 7th)
I’ve read a couple of internet reports trashing this show, so you will notice someone new in this column. His name is YANS (Your Average Negative Smark), and his job will be to automatically regurgitate negative comments about the WWE and point out all the negative things that only a smark doesn’t want to see.
Henry/Daivari interview leading to brawl
As soon as Mark Henry’s music hit I could almost here the collective groan of the internet wrestling community who obviously think that the opening two hours of the show should have a match between Benoit and Angle, and that anyone over 6’4” and over 300lbs should be fired. Henry and Daivari then cut a perfectly good heel promo that makes Henry sound threatening, calls out The Undertaker and Kurt Angle, and then sets up the main event for the show whilst furthering the build-up to two WrestleMania matches. What more can you ask for?
I’ll tell you what more you can ask for. Firstly, opening a show with Mark Henry will automatically turn viewers off because nobody likes him. Secondly, making Henry look like a threat is stupid because he’ll be released by the summer anyway. Thirdly, Teddy Long making the main event was so predictable and he may as well have just said that to start the segment and we could have had another match. Fourthly, Mark Henry has no charisma or mic skills, and the sooner he’s gone, the better. Boring start to the show.
Finlay v Lashley/Brawl
Carrying on last week’s tradition of them having awesome brawls, this one did exactly what it achieved last week and MORE. This feud has been built up on one thing and one thing only, HATRED. No gimmicks, no titles, no bestiality, just two guys who want to beat the motherloving crap out of each other. Lashley looked so awesome here, mainly because Finlay is willing to, and DEMANDS to receive stiff shots for nothing. Maybe Lashley’s face pop that he’s getting would have come earlier if he’d faced proper matches earlier instead of squashing tag teams? Can’t wait for next week’s match, although I’d prefer a street fight. This segment will actually get the very first highest honour this column has to distribute.
Verdict: Very Good
Nothing like bait and switch is there? Promise a match, then at the last second decide not to have one and choose to have some brawl that we’ve seen hundreds of times before, even just last week. Lashley is still very green and still gets no face reaction, I’ve never heard a heat machine work so hard. Neither of these guys will add anything to the MITB match anyway, and a lumberjack match is so old fashioned and so repetitive anyway.
The Miz: Reality Check
Nice to see that The Miz is being called up, his OVW work has been quite good from what I’ve seen. The Reality TV gimmick was always likely to be what he brought to the table after appearing on The Real World before training for Tough Enough. Should be a useful addition to the show.
Oh good, another guy to come on to SmackDown! and get beaten by Mark Henry, JBL or the Boogeyman. This guy has no hope whatsoever because he’s white as hell and not 6’4”+ or 300lbs+.
I’ve always thought that JBL is one of the best talkers in the company purely because he is SO good at portraying his character that every word he says sounds so real. I must say, I wasn’t expecting him to insult Austin, but the link to Austin’s interview on WWE.com brings it all together. He also managed to build up his match against Benoit at WM22 at the same time, making this the second promo in one night that has accomplished two things at once.
Can’t JBL just go away? Nobody likes JBL, and I don’t understand why the WWE keep pushing him. His in ring work is appalling, and whilst he may be able to cut a promo, the promo is worthless because he can’t back it up in the ring. All the crap he stated, how he’s a great wrestler, held every major title and one of Texas’ best wrestlers was just embarrassing because none of them are even slightly true. I’d also like to point out we still haven’t had a match on this show yet.
William Regal vs. Paul Burchill
OH MY GOD HE’S COME IN ON A ROPE! That was SO awesome, and such a great addition to the gimmick. Regal’s pre-match promo seemed a little off form for his usual verbal skills, but he made up for it with some strong work during the match. I would question whether Regal should have had THAT much offence during the match considering it was Burchill they were trying to put over, but you can’t have everything. Burchill also seemed to be watching a lot of HBK matches, the forearm, the nip-up the back body drop, AND the inverted atomic drop coming out of Michaels’ playbook. Burchill seemed to be getting some good face heat, and being allowed to do the C4 will only make him look far better than he actually is in the ring. It just needs a Piratey name now.
Burchill will NEVER get this gimmick over. It truly is the most pathetic and embarrassing gimmick I have ever seen, and Burchill’s career will never be remembered for his in-ring ability now, just for playing a pirate. He got no face reaction whatsoever, basically got squashed in the match, and then won with a fake-looking move. Burchill is so much better than this gimmick and deserves a bigger break. I give it two weeks till it’s canned and Burchill is released.
Booker T/Sharmell run from The Boogeyman
A Booker T promo with Sharmell and Boogeyman? Awesome on paper. Booker’s mic skills have improved SO much recently it’s amazing, and his delivery of reading out the letters was superb. “Worms have feelings too!” – Too funny. And I also found out that eating worms isn’t healthy OR sanitary. Booker T EDUCATES as well as drawing attention to conspiracies! A Boogeyman appearance was always going to happen, and although the match at SNME won’t be that good, the build-up thus far has been great fun.
First of all, Booker should just retire. He’s constantly getting injured, and all he has are kicks and punches and the stupid Spinaroonie. Boogeyman on the other hand should never have started wrestling at all. The gimmick was never entertaining or funny and I have no idea why it’s been given so long when the crowd hate it so much. The match at SNME will be a complete disaster, and if Booker loses then his career will be over credibility-wise anyway. Total crap once again.
Kristal vs. Jillian
OK, here comes the first negative point of the show so far. Yeah, girls undressing is fun, but if you’re going to make a match out of it, it’s probably best not to choose the worst two wrestlers on SmackDown! to do it. I don’t think Kristal has had a match ANYWHERE before this one. That being said, seeing Jillian in her underwear is always nice, so that negates any possible Ugliness of the segment.
BAD?! This was ugly from start to finish! The match itself was embarrassingly bad, mainly because these two have no training whatsoever. Whoever decided that Kristal and Jillian should feud needs to be locked up in a sound-proofed room with Jim Cornette for 3 hours to be told how to book a wrestling show properly.
Chris Benoit vs. Gregory Helms
Wow, Helms’ nose is seriously screwed up. Major kudos to him for even competing in this match, let alone have constant pressure applied to it by Benoit. It’s nice to see the Cruiserweight Champion not only have a good match against a legit heavyweight opponent, but also to get so much offence in and look like a star throughout. Benoit can obviously have good matches every day of the week, but this one was certainly of a higher standard than his usual TV matches, which is a pretty big compliment.
How can anyone justify giving this match just 10 minutes and giving Mark Henry a main event match? Whoever is booking this crap has got their priorities completely wrong. Yeah, it was a good match, but the outside interference from the cruiserweights was just stupid. Aren’t Kash and Noble supposed to be heels? If so, why are they helping Benoit win? It’s just stupid and inconsistent booking.
Well the Animal heel turn continues, you can tell he’s a heel because THE FACE PAINT IS GONE. Having Animal insulting Hawk is just really, really bad, but nobody can blame the bookers considering that Animal’s brother could have easily changed any part of it. Animal hasn’t wrestled a singles match since 2001, so I’m not looking forward to the match with Hardy next week.
Wow, the WWE mark finally managed to find something wrong with the show! It’s a miracle! But I would say it was VERY Ugly, any time that a dead wrestler gets insulted, my opinion of the WWE sinks lower and lower. Vince McMahon obviously has far less business sense than people think if he thinks this will draw heat and money.
Mark Henry/Randy Orton vs. Kurt Angle/Rey Mysterio
Ok, so maybe this match wasn’t the best of the night or even second best, but we got a chance to see our WM main-eventers fight, with added Mark Henry and Daivari. I personally was a little disappointed that they couldn’t find some way of getting a result from the match, but I can understand how they don’t want any of the WM Main Eventers involved in a pinfall finish, and also not have Henry lose as well. Henry splashing Angle through the table was another great moment from the big man, and it’s probably a good idea that Rey was moved out of the way, he’d probably be dead now. A casket match at WM? Doesn’t sound too bad, at least the additional gimmick means we won’t have a repeat of the match from a few weeks ago, and new spots can be used.
Nothing sums up the WWE better than the main event having a non-finish. There wasn’t even a DQ, the match just got ignored so that Fat Boy could do his 3 foot leap through a table. And then to end the show on an even worse note, we get a Taker/Henry match made for WM. They even know it’s going to be bad, so they make it a casket match to hide both men’s inadequacies. Here’s an idea to hide crap wrestlers: DON’T BOOK THEM.
So, overall we have:
Very Good: 1 (x2 = 2)
Ugly: 1 (x2 = 2)
And yes, it really was a great show. I would probably put it on the level with last week’s show, meaning that the SmackDown! side of things has delivered two great shows in consecutive weeks. Of course, most other internet reporters seem to disagree with me, but if they can’t even like this show, I would seriously suggest to them that they should watch another company. Did you enjoy SmackDown!? Let me know your thoughts at:
And I will see you next week for the RAW review. Take care amigos.