WWE Smackdown: How the WWE Failed All of Its Fans, Not Just the IWC
Warning: This article contains SmackDown Spoilers, if you do not wish to have the results of tomorrow's SmackDown spoiled for you, click "back" now.
There, you've been warned.
For those of you who've stuck around, I'm sure you know by now the Christian's reign as World Heavy Weight Champion ended just two-days after it began.
Of course since the WWE chooses to ignore the fact that we all know SmackDown is taped on Tuesdays, but airs on Fridays, the reign will go down in the books as a five day reign.
Semantics aside, the WWE really screwed the pooch on this one.
However, I'm not really referring to stripping the belt off of Christian. I don't think anyone in the Internet wrestling community (IWC) is at all surprised by a short title reign for Christian (though we can all agree we thought he'd at least make it to the next pay-per-view).
No, where the WWE failed was to give us zero build up or drama to this match.
Personally, I have not seen the match between Randy Orton and Christian first hand (though I hear it was pretty good) and have not seen the actual program leading up to the match.
I'm sure the WWE creative team tried to shoe-horn some sort of build up into SmackDown, but what kind of build up can you give over the course of the two hour run time?
Is it fair to the fans (not Christian) to have had a change of title like this?
Sure he's proven to be an entertaining singles competitor, and had the stars not aligned for him with Edge's retirement, he probably wouldn't have been as over with the majority of the fans to actually compete for the title.
So my quarrel with the WWE isn't over him losing the strap so quickly. After all, we've seen things like this before.
For insistence, when Chris Jericho technically captured his first WWE title against Triple H. Jericho was relieved of it by referee Earl Hemptner before RAW went off the air that night.
That was much shorter than Christian's reign and happened to a far more deserving wrestler, but it doesn't bug me because it worked with the story line of Triple H being power hungry and a bully because he was married to Stephenie McMahon.
Christian losing to Orton so quickly after his emotional win at Extreme Rules is a smack in the face to the fans because we got no build up and no drama leading into the match.
The WWE just decided (without really giving Christian a chance) that Christian couldn't carry SmackDown and hastily wasted all the warm and fuzzy feelings the fans had for Christian's victory.
With the spoiler of Christian's loss spreading like wild fire throughout the Internet, there has been a ton of unwarranted backlash against Randy Orton.
If you search through Twitter, you'll see a ton of people attacking Randy Orton on his Twitter page (@RandyOrton) as if it were his decision to strip Christian of the belt.
If any of you who are reading this are one of those people, lay-off the man and get a life, because you're way too invested in the WWE.
It wasn't Randy's call, it was Vince's. Let's say for a moment Randy didn't agree with Vince's call and either said flat out "no" or during the match he told Christian he was going to take a dive and let Christian keep the belt.
This is what would have happened: If Randy said no, and Vince was adamant that Christian wasn't going to keep the title, he would have just found someone else, and that person would have been lesser than Orton and we'd all be even more pissed that someone like Mark Henry would be holding the belt right now.
Or if Orton just took a dive, not only would he be punished for it, but more than likely Christian would too and for Christian, he'd probably (insert Chris Jericho voice) never, ever, get a shot at the title again.
So I repeat, lay-off Orton for Pete's sake, it's not his fault.
However, I do see a silver lining here.
I have always felt Orton worked better as a heel, and since he's not John Cena, the WWE can heel turn him as they please.
Orton has already expressed frustration at the fans berating him over Twitter, so, why not extend that to television.
Have Orton come out next week (sort of like R-Truth did last Monday) and say he's sick of the fans. He can then cut a promo how Christian wasn't good enough to hold the title and really bury Christian.
Christian can them come out and invoke his rematch clause (those only exist for a quick rematch so if he never actually gets one I won't be surprised) for Over the Limit (dumb PPV name) and we'll get a pretty decent feud and title match at the PPV.
Having Orton turn heel takes away from SmackDown having a really powerful face, but I've always found the WWE more compelling when the odds are overwhelmingly stacked against the good-guy.
Much like when Austin not only had to deal with the Rock (when he was a heel) but also with the entire corporation as well as the Ministry of Darkness.
It seemed like there was no chance (in hell) that Austin would regain the title, but he did.
Turning Orton heel (given that he's built up to be the toughest competitor on SmackDown) and have seemingly lesser faces go against him builds the drama.
I doubt that will happen though. The WWE has really drifted away from having the face fight an up hill battle and has instead seemingly given them all the aces, so unfortunately it looks like Christian is back to the mid-card and we'll have to hope one of the lesser heels steps up and gives Orton a run for his money as Champ.
For more WWE musings, be sure to follow me on Twitter (@jomac006).
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