Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Ramblemania 31

So what follows here is a fairly rough recap based on my initial viewing of last night's Wrestlemania... which was actually a replay because I was too busy watching the first 'Mania from 1985. Although I'll admit that I peered to the live show at times, for the most part, I waited until Monday morning to watch the replay. So here're some random thoughts on the show; no ratings or reviews. Just some rambles... as per the course.

We begin with some guy singing America The Beautiful, an annual Wrestlemania tradition.

The opening montage is LL Cool J guiding us through bits and bobs of memorable moments in Wrestlemania history, which is contrary to what I believed initially, which was going to be an LL Cool J music video. It's not a bad little bit, although points must be docked for pulling out the extremely false "Once In A Lifetime" tagline... unless he wanted to forget that Wrestlemania 29 exists, in which I don't blame him one bit.

Daniel Bryan defeated Intercontinental champion Bad News Barrett, Dolph Ziggler, Luke Harper, Dean Ambrose, . The final segment involved Bryan and Ziggler headbutting each other ad nauseum (that's ten concussions between them) before one big headbutt knocks Ziggler off his purch.

There's a WWE-produced commercial for Tapout, the workout brand for douchebags...

Randy Orton defeated Seth Rollins with a rather sweet-looking RKO on Rollins as he was going for a Curbstomp. Hey, I gotta give Randy credit; he really made that move his own to an extent that you'd almost think he came up with it. This was a good match, with both guys playing their roles in the story well. Rollins held his own here, I think, and didn't look like a complete chump. I just hope that he gets around to pulling the trigger on that contract sooner or later, because... well...

They're airing the promo package for the HHH/Sting match, surprising me by how early this match is taking place. As much as people like to shit on the obvious skipping of Sting's TNA tenure, I honestly don't mind it. The dormant Sting being silent since 2001 and making his move now actually makes for a better story than Sting being stuck in Florida for a few years before making his move... I only wish this had been done sooner when Sting was.

Oh yeah, another obnoxious Wrestlemania tradition are the overly long entrances. Sting gets a rather elegant Japanese drum number that got a nice reaction from the crowd and comes out wearing a nice looking red coat. Later pondering left me questioning the decision in giving Sting such an entrance other than for the sake of upholding said obnoxious Wrestlemania tradition.

Meanwhile, continuing the other obnoxious tradition of giving McSon-In-Law an extravagant entrance that comprises dressing him in stupid costumes, HHH gets a bunch of Terminators, an Arnold cameo on the video wall, some goofy graphics, and pops up from the ground wearing the most ridiculous costume ever conceived, a cross between hi-tech Terminator armor and the usual "king" crap he adorns every year. For all their efforts in trying to make McSon-In-Law imposing and a possible threat to the Stinger, they sure like to dress him up like an utter fool (his various Gonad The Barbarian costumes being sufficient evidence)... not to mention, why would you threaten Sting with Terminators? Doesn't McSon-In-Law know that Sting is friends with Robocop?

HHH beats Sting... why are you surprised? They had DX show up, they had the original nWo show up, all we needed was a bottle of Geritol on a pole and we'd be set to go! A handshake is shared and all is well in the world... well not really; we never got so much as a peep from Robocop tonight. I guess he had better things to do. The match was pretty bad, though... try as they might, but this was really sad to watch. This puts dreck like Heroes Of Wrestling or Iron Sheik vs. Mighty Maccabee to shame. I can't see how ANYBODY would want a Sting/Undertaker match after sitting through this.

On the bright side, the fact that Scott Hall took a bump means he must be doing better. That's something, I guess.

So they announced some shitty shows for the Network... including a cartoon with Seth Green, something called Swerved that doesn't involve Vince Russo, something with Jerry Springer... and another shitty Divas Search. I don't think this is what they had in mind when they wanted Divas to be given a chance.

There's a concert. Nobody gives a shit.

There's a backstage skit with Daniel Byran Danielson being congratulated by various former IC champions; Pat Patterson, Roddy Piper, Ricky Steamboat, Ric Flair (yes, Ric Flair), and Bret Hart. All break into a YES chant that is DAMN!'ed by Ron Simmons. I think this whole timing watching, I'm waiting for Simmons to show up to do this thing, but otherwise, it was a nice little bit.

AJ Lee and Paige beat the Balloon Twins in a pissbreak match... look, as much as I'd like to #GiveDivasAChance or whatever, the current crop they've got going on isn't cutting it for me. Meanwhile, I go to NXT and the women there, despite some given goofy gimmicks, give their all and do it in a way that makes me want to care and want to watch them. The Divas, on the other hand, has the exact opposite effect; they make me wish they stayed on Total Divas. Sad but true... I don't even have the satisfaction of asking, "Why do the Balloon Twins still have jobs?"

Rusev comes out in a tank, complete with Russian marching band. Cena gets historical stock footage featuring only Republican presidents (Regan and Dubya, specifically)... and the crowd boos the shit out of Cena. I guess this is a Democratic crowd? Or maybe they're rooting for Mother Russia, I don't know...

So John Cena defeats Rusev to win the U.S. Title... because 'Murica! I just hope he doesn't bring back a shitty spinner belt. As for the match, it was a typical power match between two strong guys... that featured people chanting "Let's Go Lana" and "Rocky IV" for some reason... also there was a shoe, but nobody used the shoe.

There's a waste of time with Nipple H and McSon-In-Law trading barbs with Dwayne and even Ronda Rousey jumped in for some reason. People seemed to like this bit for some reason; probably due to Rousey's involvement, but since I'm NOT an MMA fan (never cared for that sort of thing, I prefer my fights to be fake and predetermined), I doubt I would've cared. Yeah, I skipped over this part; not because of Rousey, mind you, but because hearing Stephanie McMahon talk is the equivalent of contracting some kind of cancer. My god, that woman has a shrill voice that can kill children. And it's gotten WORSE over the years. How people considered her to be any semblance of a good performer is beyond me, but at the very least I can rely on the one good performer to steal the show... and that's the MUTE button. I love you, MUTE button. You're such a great worker. If only you knew how to cut a promo, you'd be getting the push instead of the German Germs... wait, what?

Undertaker defeated Bray Wyatt... Taker looked about as good as a man his age would; a bit wobbly, but he held together. Certainly a better match here than what he had with Lesnar last year.

And then there was the main event, which started with Roman vs Brock. And for a good chunk of the match, it was a rehash of Brock vs Cena at last year's Summerslam... the one that sucked with fifty billion suplexes. Roman smiled a few times, which gave me false hope that he would attempt some semblance of a comeback, but it was more shitty suplexes from Lesnar. At one point, Brock gets cut and Roman begins a staggering barrage of flying punches and spears before eating his fourth F5. Just as things couldn't get any worse, Seth Rollins shows up... and cashes in his Money In The Bank, thus making the match a Triple Threat. My hopes are brought up by the announcement, since this match has gotten interesting for the first time ever, only to be dashed somewhat by the possibility that Rollins might be used as the sacrificial lamb to keep Roman (or Brock) strong... but instead, Rollins curbstomps Reigns and gets the pin... and the title.

Here's the thing; there were two ways to go about the "advertised" main event; either Roman Reigns won it and got booed out of the continent or Brock would've retained and the title is in Abayence for six years. And as much as I didn't care for Roman - no reason to - I would've preferred if he won it because he's there full time... but Rollins cashing in and then winning the match was a pleasant surprise. It did something different with the MiTB gimmick that hadn't been done before - a Wrestlemania cash-in that made the main event a Triple Threat - AND it went in a direction that you didn't think they would go because it would've made sense. By ending the match this way, It kept Roman "strong", it didn't make Brock look "weak", and Seth Rollins gets the title.

But perhaps more than anything, putting Seth Rollins in there was the only way to make the match any semblance of good because holy fuck, that match blew MASSIVE chunks. Yeah, I know there's a bunch of guys out there who have such a hard-on for Lesnar because of his UFC background, but from my vantage point - coming from someone who couldn't give two shits about the spectacle that is sensationalized human cockfighting, so the Ronda Rousey and Stephanie crap didn't thrill me, either - he's basically the modern-day Scott Steiner circa 2003... which isn't a good thing by any means. I refer to his match with HHH at the 2003 Royal Rumble, where he did nothing but suplexes and the crowd shat on him for it... and he did the same shit a month later at that WWE PPV event... so at what point did this sort of shitty booking becomes "awesome?" Fifty suplexes in a match isn't awesome, it's fucking stupid.

So yeah, Seth Rollins cashing in and winning the title? That made me happy. That made the whole damn thing worth it. And at the end of the day, when all is said and done, Seth Rollins' Penis did indeed main event Wrestlemania.

All in all, this was a good show. There were some dull moments, such as the main event before Seth Rollins cashed in as well as that whole Steph/Trips/Rock/Rousey wankfest (this was about as "awesome" as catching AIDS) and the sad tale that is HHH vs Sting, but there was more good than bad. The ladder match was fun, Orton vs Rollins was nice, there were a couple good moments, and Seth Rollins... well, you know. I was thoroughly entertained by this year's Wrestlemania. And that's something I don't find myself saying much of in recent years.

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