This week's episode of WWE SmackDown looks to continue WWE's hot streak of great programming.
Just a few weeks ago the McMahon family storyline was a contrived and uninspired storyline, but ever since Triple H’s SummerSlam heel turn it’s consistently produced compelling television.
The essence of the success lies in the unofficial faction including Triple H (and the rest of the McMahons), Randy Orton and The Shield; every story needs a villain, and they’re some truly dastardly heels.
Elsewhere the divas division is quickly becoming something that actually resembles a legitimate division following the momentum of Total Divas and AJ Lee’s excellent promo last week.
Also, somewhere in the background Rob Van Dam is feuding with Alberto Del Rio for the world heavyweight championship.
SmackDown emanates from Minneapolis, Minnesota this week, and here are full spoilers for Friday’s show.
Spoilers courtesy of WrestlingInc.com
- Triple H calls a Town Hall meeting for the superstars to air their grievances.
- He announces the following matches: Rob Van Dam vs. Randy Orton, Kofi Kingston vs. Curtis Axel, Ryback vs. Dolph Ziggler, Daniel Bryan vs. whichever member of The Shield he chooses.
- Randy Orton defeats Rob Van Dam after interference from Alberto Del Rio. Del Rio further beat down Van Dam after the match.
- Renee Young interviews Daniel Bryan, he says it's up to The Shield to decide which member faces him tonight.
- AJ Lee talks to Aksana and Alicia Fox about Total Divas and says she'd rather defend her title against one of them instead of the stars of the show.
- Ryback vs. Dolph Ziggler with Dean Ambrose on commentary is up next. Big Hungry gets the win following an attack on Ziggler by Ambrose. Ziggler will face Ambrose for the US title at Night of Champions.
- Kofi Kingston beats Curtis Axel in a non-title match.
- Paul Heyman cuts a promo backstage on CM Punk.
- Naomi vs. Brie Bella ends in a no contest after AJ brings out some divas to have a face off with the stars of Total Divas.
- The Real Americans defeat The Usos.
- Triple H forces Big Show to take on all three members of 3MB. Big Show wins after a knockout punch to Heath Slater, who was helped to the back by referees.
- The Shield choose Seth Rollins to face Daniel Bryan. Bryan gets the pinfall victory using the same move that beat Cena at SummerSlam. Randy Orton attacks Bryan after the match.
- SmackDown ends with Orton standing over Bryan.
Bryan gets some retribution
It feels like it’s been a while since Daniel Bryan has come out on top; he’s spent the last few weeks getting brutalized by The Corporation and The Shield.
Well, the show still ended with Orton standing over a beaten Bryan, but at least The American Dragon got to briefly taste revenge and victory when he defeated Seth Rollins.
Every time Rollins and Daniel Bryan share a ring the fans win—the main event for this week’s SmackDown is definitely one to look forward to.
In terms of quality matches, Randy Orton vs. Rob Van Dam is also something to be excited about.
Curtis Axel is currently involved in the biggest non-McMahon related storyline in the WWE right now, which is CM Punk’s feud with Paul Heyman.
The third-generation superstar will team with Heyman to face The Second City Saint in a handicap elimination tag match at Night of Champions in what is arguably the biggest match of Axel’s career thus far.
So how does the WWE sell him as a threat to Punk? They have him lose clean to Kofi Kingston, who is currently in creative limbo.
The program involving Punk and Heyman was terrific back in August, but it’s lost a lot of momentum since it lost Brock Lesnar.
Axel wasn’t exactly believable competition in the first place, and suffering clean losses to other midcarders isn’t going to help anyone.
Thankfully Heyman and Punk are magicians on the microphone, so there's hope yet for this feud.
The dark match for the night saw Daniel Bryan take on Randy Orton. The match ended after interference from all three members of The Shield.
Orton and The Hounds of Justice beat down Bryan until Kofi Kingston, Dolph Ziggler and Rob Van Dam came to The American Dragon's defense.
The Show ended when the babyfaces hit each of their finishing moves on Seth Rollins.