Worst: The Fatal Flaw Of This Main Event
Last week I briefly touched on the absurdist, cyclical nature of Jim Ross being humiliated and fired from WWE, brought back and put into a position of reverence, then immediately humiliated and fired again. That never rang more truly than during last night, when a shamed-in-front-of-his-wife this-is-a-shoot-everybody Ross returned after about 40 minutes of unemployment to somehow team with the Best Guy In The Company against the wormy announcer they hate and a guy who runs away when too much wrestling happens.
The worst part of this, though, is that they brought him back here and spent ten minutes setting up a Jim Ross versus Michael Cole showdown in a country where Jim Ross and Michael Cole aren’t WWE’s announcers. Did WWE forget that the Spanish announce team weren’t just guys who chill at a Jakks Pacific collapsible table and actually broadcast the shows in Spanish? If Marcelo Rodriguez and Carlos Cabrera were involved in a passive-aggressive blood feud where yelling at each other about stupid sh*t was the most important thing, yeah, team one of them with John Cena. Hell, team them up with Amazing Red for all I care. But consider before you build a show around a match and series of moments that the 14,000 people you’re in front of didn’t grow up with Gorilla Monsoon, they grew up with Monzón Del Gorila, and to them Jim Ross is just a weird looking old man who keeps getting sh*t-canned.
One of my least favorite things about WWE being a globetrotting international phenomenon is that they make absolutely no effort to absorb the culture and uniqueness of where they are. Look at that set. Remember when Michael Scott asked the Dunder Mifflin Party Planning Committee to throw Oscar a Mexican-themed fiesta with firecrackers and a donkey? One of the coolest aspects of lucha libre that never gets talked about is the ambiance — yeah, the flashy guys in masks doing somersaults and arm drags is fantastic, but so is the airhorn, and so is the big Corona logo in the middle of the ring, and so are the ring girls. Doc Wagner is a chubby dude in a camo mask who enters with flames and prostitutes to Bon Jovi’s “Bad Medicine”. If you don’t think that’d be better way to use 40 seconds of your show than Jack Swagger losing to a jumping dick press, I don’t know what to tell you.
These guys can set up a ring in a subway station and make it play like an issue of the f**king Infinity Gauntlet, why not integrate some of that into your show instead of filming a mariachi band in your parking lot for 20 seconds and calling it “Mexico”? Clip-art Mexican flags on a video screen is literally the laziest thing you can do, and I know you’re basically the world’s most well-traveled prejudiced millionaires, but I hope even you didn’t choose “lazy” as the theme for the Mexico show.
Worst: I Feel Like I’m Already Playing WWE ’12
A sad but true confession: I missed most of this match. That’s a terrible sign, isn’t it? I watch this show every week and feel compelled to write about it. The match featured one guy I like and four I love, but I’m so worn down and exhausted watching the same ten guys tread water between three pay-per-views in a month that I’d rather sit in front of my computer spamming the scroll-wheel, looking at nothing, reading nothing, spending 10 minutes making instantaneously forgettable lights flash across my eyes than sit through this. And it’s not even bad. Going back and watching it again, the match was fine. It didn’t accomplish anything, and we’re just building up the same stuff we built on the last show and the show before that without actually building anything on TOP of it all, but yeah, Sheamus is rad and Mark Henry is a beast and Cody Rhodes not wearing kneepads is more entertaining than Bound For Glory. I just… I’m tired of it, and I need Vengeance to come and go so we can get an actual month and a half before show and give me something to look forward to.
I really feel like I’m playing WWE ’12. I’m selecting the six most fun guys to play with, putting them in a tag match and watching it. Not playing it, just watching the A.I. try to figure out when they’re supposed to punch. One guy initiates a tie-up, so the four people on the apron step off onto the floor in stereo and start digging under the ring for weapons. Then they stand still, drop the weapons, slide into the ring and step back onto the apron. The video games are supposed to emulate what happens on the show, guys, not the other way around. I see Miz doing his taunts in the corner and I know in my heart he’s only started doing them to get a signature animation in the game.
Globalization, synergy. Paradigm shifts. Stuff you read on Power Point slides. Remember when these guys bled?
Best: Fire John Morrison, Leave Him In Mexico
I’m going to expand my normal talking point and say that John Morrison deserves a spot in a big league wrestling company, just not the one where he interrupts people and berates them into a match. There’s a reason why nobody talks sh*t about Evan Bourne … he doesn’t DO anything. He falls down beautifully, hits his pretty top rope move, smiles and throws up the V. His music doesn’t kick in when Ted DiBiase is cutting a promo, and he never walks out in a shirt that says EVAN BOURNE – I JUST DID YA DISHES or whatever, and he never tries to insult Maryse by saying she’s got capybara breath. As someone who championed the tartan-and-daisy Hardy Boyz for the longest time, I know the value in a man who can fall down well.
Morrison can fall down well. He can’t convince me that falling down HURT him, but when you’re only out there for a few minutes you don’t always need to. If he sticks around and accepts his position as the guy who gets flung into the air and World’s Strongestly Slammed to death, he could spend the next five years making Mason Ryan look like f**king Terry Gordy, and he could drive a Cadillac and keep Melina vag-deep in Skittles while he was at it.