No Way Out is behind us and as SmackDown rolls into Baltimore, I’m starting a new article series where I review wrestling shows and give you a run-down of my least favorite parts. I’ll try not to just vomit hatred, but rather throw some positivity amongst the areas that frustrated and disappointed me.
Mick Foley as SmackDown’s General Manager of the Night
The issue is that he’s just in the role for the night. By giving him a one evening engagement, that essentially means that Mick is not going to be involved on upcoming shows to any significant extent, and that sucks.
Big Show Wastes Foley’s Opening Segment by Rambling
I could listen to Mick Foley read the dictionary (with a bit of improvising on his part from time to time, to be certain), and when SmackDown started, we did not JUST get a Big Show segment, but we got a rambling, stammering speech.
The World’s Largest Athlete took too much time before he got his point across. For all the people who say that Big Show is a decent World Champion when he has one of the top two straps, his role should not be the guy who walks out and starts the show with a seven minute diatribe.
Brodus Clay Crawling Under the Bottom Rope
The world’s largest dancing goofball decided to save us from the stammering Giant, and his entrance had the right tone: no dancing, just a stern look on his face and the dismissal of the Funkettes when they got to the bottom of the ramp.
Then what does he do? He crawls up onto the apron and under the bottom rope and Big Show starts in on him.
Why not have Brodus Clay climb up the steps, walk onto the apron and get into the ring in a way that doesn’t minimize his size? Why not have Big Show at least display the idea that he somewhat respects the sheer size of Brodus, despite the new school Funkmaster being smaller than he is?
Show can start to show something, then rush in and catch Brodus off-guard, and you would still have a decent segment.
David Otunga Stayed Outside the Ring While Big Show Destroyed Brodus Clay
Why not have David Otunga stay inside the ring after taking out Brodus Clay’s leg, further showing fans just how big he is, in comparison? Otunga’s got huge muscles and standing next to Big Show, he’s not going to look tall, but he is going to look STACKED.
Given Otunga’s limited move set, you have to find things to use to sell him as being impressive. His mic skills have improved to a passable level, so keep showing off just how strong he is. Big Show and Brodus Clay don’t have anywhere near the muscle definition that Otunga does and I guarantee that he looks impressive next to them.
The psychology of that on fans would be worth the small effort that it takes to have Otunga stay in the ring, but to not touch Brodus until Big Show is done.
Ryback Still Squashing Jobbers
Vickie Guerrero Is Hosting RAW and SmackDown Next Week
Did their other choice bail on them? Do we really need to get another Vickie Guerrero General Manager reign, given how well it went last time? I guess they want a way to help push Dolph Ziggler into a title shot while showing that Vickie is still the type to abuse her power.
Alberto Del Rio Looked Frustrated When He Got The Match In Hand Late Into The Match
The Mexican Aristocrat got a couple great shots to Christian's shoulder in the early portions of the match, but the Intercontinental Champion kept getting the advantage. ADR fought back in a great match, which had some great psychology to it. When Del Rio hit a move resembling a Stone Cold Stunner - only using Christian's arm in the process - Alberto looked frustrated by Christian kicking out. Why not have him look cocky, knowing he was in control, knowing he had Christian in a very bad position, knowing he was setting up beautifully for his submission hold, knowing the fans were worried... and yet, he's "frustrated" that he didn't get the pin? Why not goad the fans? Why not mock Christian? Sure, we love to hate petulant, immature competitors, but why not give us reason to hate Alberto Del Rio because he's good at what he does - and he knows it? It's admittedly a little thing, but it matters... and I don't have anything else to complain about with that match. The ending was great, with limited involvement from Ricardo Rodriguez, and Cody Rhodes not showing up until after the match.
Not Enough AJ during D.Bryan vs Kane
Sure, they cut over to AJ at the time keeper's table a couple times during the match between Bryan & Kane, but they didn't exactly go out of their way to get creative with it. Why not have some sort of split screen where the "AJ Cam" is in the bottom corner? Maybe she shows a reaction to Bryan getting kicked in the face, or Kane getting the missile drop kick or kicking out at 2, and the announcers could speculate where her loyalties lie. They don't need to make her the focus of the match, but she's the catalyst for a lot of this, and they could've done more than just a few cut-overs and some general statements from Michael Cole.
Oh, and still no Cattle Mutilation from Bryan, which I might complain about during all of his matches until he uses it - perfectly fitting for a Vegan.
Mick Foley Telling Heath Slater That Losing To Zack Ryder Is An Embarrassment
The One Man Rock Band interrupted Mrs Foley's Baby Boy, and Foley tells him that losing to Cyndi Lauper would be no embarrassment compared to what would happen if he lost to the night's chosen opponent: Zack Ryder. Why not sell it in a different way, like having Ryder show up and stick up for Lauper, let he and Slater trade words for a moment and then have the match happen? If Ryder is going to ascend to the heights that some fans want to see him, he needs to get the chance to push things forward with his words - whether it's a short-term feud or a long-term storyline. Don't just get the fans to pop for Zack Ryder because he's going to embarrass the annoying Heath Slater. Have the fans pop for Ryder because he's going out there and delivering the message that the fans would like to give - that he wants Slater to shut up!
Two Potential Future Stars in WWE Face To Face and Ryder Says Almost Nothing?
Backstage, Damien Sandow dresses down Foley, then dresses down Zack Ryder, and instead of using the opportunity to have Ryder speak up and show some personality, he just has the stupid look on his face and gets one line of dialogue about Foley being a legend.
The Prime Time Playas Signature Shirt
I like the concept - put rhinestones all over it to try to give it some sort of style, but it's unreadable - and I've got a BIG television.
Other than that, how can I complain about a great tag match featuring lots of actual tag team wrestling - quick tags, double teams, partners conferring on strategy with each other and managers?
No Holds Barred is JUST Getting Released on DVD?
This isn't specific to Smackdown, obviously, but it's an injustice that this classic hadn't been on DVD before now. And with Hogan being part of TNA Wrestling right now, you can't help but notice how they mock him with the way they say "Brother..."
The Announcers Not Reacting To The Backstage Tag Team Scuffle
The biggest (only?) feud in the tag division over the past year or more takes a step forward in intensity, and the announcers are quiet throughout it, and they don't even get five seconds to respond to it after it occurs? The fans aren't going to care about the Prime Time Playas feuding with Epico & Primo unless you remind them WHY they should care. On RAW, the live environment makes it easy to understand production gaps like this, but they had a couple days to do something on that. Maybe it would've taken too much time out of Santino getting kissed by his rabidly amorous fan.
The Right Hand Isn't Talking To The Left Hand
Jericho's return to RAW is announced, but part of the promo questions who will be running the show on Monday. Didn't they think that maybe they'd be announcing that Vickie Guerrero was RAW's upcoming "host" at some point during Smackdown, essentially making that promo useless after 8:20 on Friday night?
Dolph Ziggler Destroyed By Sheamus
At No Way Out, Ziggler lost cleanly to Sheamus, and in tonight's rematch, it happens again. What can Dolph do at this point, aside from rely on Vickie Guerrero's abuse of power, to get another championship match? Having split with Jack Swagger, the tag title situation isn't an option for him either unless they find someone to be the protege to the Show Off.
Want to vote for your least favorite part of the June 22nd Smackdown? We've got a poll for that in the other version of this article!
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