In case you're wondering and need extra reasons to flame me, you can read how we reached at the miraculous tally of 2-1 to John Cena here. It isn't short, but it is definitely sweet (that counts I hope).
Just before anyone contradicts the theme and purpose of this article, I'd like to shamelessly admit that these scores don't really matter—the match does. And before you voice it out loud, being extremely skilled at telepathy as I am, I'd also say that these scores don't undermine any superstar (Rock and Cena alike) and what they have achieved in their Hall of Fame-worthy careers.
But we do this (or at least I do) because we love this. There's nothing wrong in getting completely invested in a feud—it helps to elevate the level of interest, excitement and the impatience. Impatience being the key to hyping a PPV as it ends up influencing the greater good.
Typical example: Tons of Rocky fans can't wait for WrestleMania until Rock Rock Bottoms John Cena. They gain intrinsic satisfaction over the triumph of their hero and it's vice versa for John Cena fans.
But a Sheamus-Daniel Bryan match just gets lazy and lifeless statements like 'looking forward to it' or 'will be a great match.' It will be fantastic, no doubt. But fan involvement is important and above everything else, as the fan's passion is world-, or rather, PPV-changing.
Now, since WWE hadn't done a great deal of promoting Rock's legendary career, the demographics of The People clearly creates a picture of a mob of seasoned wrestling fans, who have stuck through right from the golden Attitude Era. John Cena has remained with his school of kids, ladies and a minority yet extremely vocal bunch of loyal male fans.
Who won this week's bout?
The point I'm getting to, at a pace customary to Undertaker's entrance, is that if you've been watching Rocky's promos ever since the Attitude Era, then this week's segment was just a harbinger of despondency.
The sadness arises not from the fact that it was a pretty bad promo for Rock's standards. No, the sadness arises from the fact that he wasn't 'bogged down by the WWE Creative' in any sort of way in this one (I'll give you wrist notes but not this)—which incidentally is everyone's excuse for an old, out-of-touch Rocky-type humanoid named Dwayne Johnson.
This was Dwayne Johnson without restraints and it was just sad.
I've attached a Rock video from the Attitude Era in this article. Please do watch it.
Let's analyze what this promo did for the feud—a) Rock likes Rocky Balboa—who doesn't, but irrelevant b) Rock is an ass-kicker c) Mentioned old stars for cheap pops and d) This, I believe contradicted everything The Rock had said up till now (which wasn't much to go with) and yet had a bit of truth, d) To become a legend (he already is one), despite having defeated the likes of Stone Cold Steve Austin and Hulk Hogan, he needs to go through John Cena.
He needs to go through a transvestite, Fruity Pebble, Vanilla Ice-Teletubby hybrid, lady-parts bearing Wonder Woman to become a legend. In Rock's own words.
The worst part about this entire feud is that Rock has looked clueless, something extremely not characteristic of The Most Electrifying Man In Sports Entertainment. He called out John Cena for passing remarks over his departure and then looked clueless when Cena actually gave him facts. The Lady Parts and Wonder Woman jokes were started there and then as a cover-up.
Similar promos over the weeks have led to similar cover-ups in the form of Kung Pao and Vanilla Ice, and they'll all done one thing—eradicated the necessity of Rock making any sense in this feud. As long as he can hold the Universe in the palm of his hand, it's good enough.
Trust me folks, it was good enough.
If the entire point of this feud was that Rock would walk into this match holding John Cena in high regard and as a formidable obstacle to legend status, then all his promos so far were a bottomless chasm of hypocrisy and poor intent. If he has achieved anything, then it has to be the ridiculing of John Cena, who now faces chants of "Lady Parts" and "Fruity Pebbles" along with the jeers.
After weeks of belittling Cena as a cheap and desperate man, it seems like Cactus Jack suddenly shot a bolt of electricity up Rock's brain and he jolted to the conclusion that this was in no way making this a Legend vs. Legend match they once aimed for it to be.
So now Cena's an equal. All in a lengthy, boring promo via satellite.
Hey, via satellite was his forte as of late, and if he's failing there too then it's indeed 2012.
Cena on the other hand has stuck to two main things a) The Rock left b) Dwayne Johnson has overpowered the Rock (the occurrence of which we have witnessed every week).
Last week, Cena gave a five minute promo and Rock gave a 20 minute segment. As my previous article suggests, I gave the point to Rock but many preferred Cena over The Rock.
This week Cena didn't speak at all and just wrestled a behemoth in name and shape of Mark Henry after being jolted by a car accident. These simple actions lived up to the loyalty shtick he was stuck with so long. The Rock spoke and did nothing useful.
Before I embrace the inevitable charade of rants, I have just two situations I'd like Rock fans to consider:
1. Cena received a colossal amount of flak for grinning through one Rock promo, but what about Rock grinning through all his other promos? I'm not sure if he was meant to come out as intense or comical in this week's promo, because he failed in both.
2. How come anything the Rock does that is not atypical Rocky is blamed on 'bad booking' and 'he's being held back!' But whatever Cena has done for the past seven years weren't a result of him being booked to do so but rather all his own personal whim?
As always, I feel a need to reemphasize that I am no John Cena fan. I'd pick Rock over Cena any given day. But in this feud, Cena's the one coming more sensible, logical and less hypocritical.
Ahh well, bring on the hate. Don't be mean. Please?
Thanks for reading.
Shalaj Lawania is gradually getting older at Bleacher Report and that's about it. You can become a fan of his if you like his work or follow him on Twitter (@_Apex_Predator_) if you really can put up with his useless tweets. Annoying tweets or not, do leave a comment for this article!