Smackdown wraps up and just like we do every week, it's time to see what works and what didn't.
We open the show with the bane of wrestling's existence; talking. I will continue to say this every week until it becomes few and far between; you can't start a show with talking. There is no excuse.
Vickie and Chavo Guerrero are in the ring as Vickie address what has happened to her and The Undertaker in the past week. She welcomes The Big Show and announces his championship match for the evening. Vladimir Kozlov comes out and says he doesn't care who wins tonight, he wants to be number one contender. We cut to break before anything gets physical.
The only interesting thing to point out from this segment is how Chavo reacted when Big Show was in the ring with him. Chavo seemed upset and I think they are doing a slow turn with his character. I'll give it until Royal Rumble, but Chavo will be a face.
Our first match of the night is Brie Bella versus Natalya. Brie, or Nicole, has become much more confident with her TV presence. Her entrance is very energetic now. The opening move of the match was Brie hitting the Thez Press. I thought this was genius as she needed to come out with something quick if she wanted to get the upper hand on Natalya.
Brie was moving very fast in the match. A little bit too fast actually. She was rushing through her moves and it all looked really sloppy. It seems that Brie is too busy thinking about what she's going to do next as opposed to what she's doing now.
For most the match, Natalya is getting rocked. If Brie didn't open with the Thez Press, than I would have been against this. Natalya eventually gets the upper hand with a wicked looking tornado clothesline. This caused Brie to leave the ring and began one of the most confusing finishes I've seen in awhile.
Brie tries to go under the ring but gets caught by Victoria. Brie eventually goes under and Victoria follows. She comes out in shock as if she just saw something. Hornswoggle comes out and chases Victoria away.
Brie comes out of one side of the ring, sees that Natalya is looking at her, and crawls back under. Brie comes out the other side almost immediately and lands the crucifix pin on Natalya for the win.
Now, this ending really didn't need Hornswoggle in it. I know he's suppose to live under the ring, but he has nothing to do with this story. It would have made as much sense if the Boogeyman came out. Besides, this is the storyline week after the camera caught Brie and Nicole switching out. Tonight's episode of Smackdown should have been the reveal. Now, this is starting to drag.
Backstage, we see Funaki practicing his announcers skills, which didn't make sense because we haven't seen him doing that in a long time.
R-Truth comes out and asks Funaki what his first name is. He tells him that it's Kung. This prompts a really bad rap from R-Truth.
In another area backstage, we get Triple H and Jeff Hardy talking. Hardy tells him that he was the better man at No Mercy and wishes him luck against The Big Show. Hardy was playing some mind games with Triple H but it came off as weird.
We get R-Truth versus Shelton Benjamin next. R-Truth finally started letting fans sing along with him as he makes his way through the crowd. Shelton still has that strange promo before he comes out as well. This really doesn't work as it doesn't go with the pacing of entrances.
The match itself was a little off. These two have such contradicting styles and really don't work to well together. The opening had some nice aggression but after that, nothing.
The match ends when R-Truth counters a gut wrench back breaker to a pin. This feud really isn't going to well. They come out and bother each other during their respective matches and then have a non-title match where R-Truth wins.
They should have had it that Shelton keeps bad mouthing R-Truth for weeks. Eventually, R-Truth demands a match but it gets denied. Have R-Truth rack up some wins and become number one contender for the U.S. Championship. In their first match, as soon as the bell rings, Shelton walks out. Have the story be that Shelton has no respect R-Truth and get the fans really wanting the match.
Up next is Jeff Hardy versus MVP. Hurricane Helms another quick news flash before the match and asks if MVP can win a match. Sadly enough, it is a valid question as MVP has been on a losing streak for awhile.
This was addressed by the commentators when they said that MVP is one win away from getting a bonus in his contract. As interesting as this is to do story wise, I feels a little contrived. Shouldn't other superstars be talking about bonuses like this now? How come I feel like this is just an excuse to have MVP go on a losing streak.
When this match, started I realized that no matter who wins, the other guy will loose so much credibility. These two have been losing matches too often recently.
The match itself was really good as both of these men have good chemistry together. Jeff gets the win with the Swanton.
Kozlov comes out and takes out Hardy. It's interesting that he's still messing with him now that Hardy is no longer in the title scene.
We get a strange promo for a new wrestler named Kizarny. It looks like WWE is going old school with this as it appears to be a wrestler with a day job. As far as I know, this is Sin Bowdee from developmental. I haven't seen any footage of him so I'm not too sure how he will be in the ring. He does appear to have charisma.
Maria is announced as the special ring announcer for the next match. She is terrible at this and I don't know why they decided to do it. Hopefully, she'll stay away from ring announcing.
The match is Jesse, Festus, Carlito, and Primo versus Hawkins, Ryder, Kenny Dykstra, and Ryan Braddock. There wasn't anything special about this match. It's good to see all 8 of these men involved in a feud but there doesn't seem to be much story behind this.
There were too many people in this match to really showcase anything from anyone. Festus gets the pin on Dykstra.
The Great Khali versus three random jobbers was next. I couldn't identify any of them and assume that they were local talent. The match was very quick, but also very well done.
The bell rings, the three men charge, Khali screams at them which makes two of them run away. The last guy in gets a chop to the head and is pinned.
Khali than does the kiss cam again this week and ends up kissing a very large woman from the audience. Surprisingly, the fans were really behind this and cheered Khali for doing it. It looks like Khali may be on a face turn, which would be an interesting twist for his character.
Backstage, Kozlov does a very quick promo about how he's someone to be feared. This is how all of his promos should be as he should be a man of few words.
The main event sees Triple H versus The Big Show for the WWE Championship. This match really blew up how strong the Big Show is. He dominated through out the entire match.
These two are good workers but the amount of punishment that The Big Show inflicted should have been enough to put anyone away. Triple H looked too strong in this match and made Show's offense look weak.
Eventually, The Undertaker shows up and begins fighting Show to the back. Kozlov runs down and attacks Triple H. Some how, Triple H still has enough fight in him to retaliate. This really made Big Show look bad if he didn't even effect Triple H after his assault. Kozlov eventually gets him down.
Jeffy Hardy comes down to help Triple H but gets beat down as well. Both Triple Hand Hardy double team Kozlov to get him out of the ring.
Hardy than hits the Twist of Fate on Triple H and stares down Kozlov when the show goes off air.
It was interesting to see Triple H laid out at the end of the show. At least he let Hardy and Kozlov get the finish.
Overall, not a terribly exciting show. The stories are moving along but they all are beginning to feel stale. Hopefully, the WWE can find a way to pick up the pace and make things interesting on Smackdown. My rating: C+
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