Tuesday, August 8, 2023

WWE Summerslam 2023

So this was a thing that happened, right? The 2023 edition of Summerslam from FORD FIELD.

WWE likes to call Summerslam the biggest party of the summer or something like that. That's the tagline for as long as I can remember. I don't know about the biggest, but I can sure tell that this was the longest... or at least, it felt that way. And here I thought All In was going to be the most trivial thing coming up despite all the hype behind it and here comes Summerslam to sort of... well, let's get into my thoughts on the show.

Logan Paul defeated Ricochet with an assist from someone who gave him brass knuckles to KO Ricochet with. Michael Cole (yes, that Michael Cole) said it best: the match was great, but the ending sucked... well, okay, I don't know about great; the tribute acts remind me of better stuff, but they were good imitations marred by a bad finish. On the bright side, it's nice to see Logan give up his aspirations on being the beloved babyface and be the swarmy asshole that everyone knows him to be... well, almost everyone. I still don't know who the fuck this guy is other than he post a Youtube video of a bunch of dead bodies... or is that the other Paul guy? Is he related to the drag queen Paul? I neither know or care.

Cody Rhodes defeated Brock Lesnar in a spectacle. Suplexes, F5s, F5s through tables, and eventually Brock being done in by a bunch of Cody Cutters... eh, it's no Diamond Cutter, Dally. I've heard there was supposed to be a stip behind this, but that turned out not to be the case, which is probably for the best. Brock then shakes Cody's hand, gives him a hug, and raises his arms to the delight of the crowd... and I still have no clue why Brock attacked him in the first place. Maybe he explains it on RAW or something.

LA Knight wins the Slim Jim Battle Royal, which is nice to see him win something. It's a Battle Royal sponsored by Slim Jim. You've seen one of these, you've seen them all. It's nothing special. By the way, this show also featured a new Slim Jim commercial that featured old Macho Man footage followed by new pitchpeople Bianca Belair and LA Knight... well, at least they got paid.

Shayna Bazler defeated Ronda Rousey via submission in what was dubbed an "MMA-style match" but could very well be the designated piss break match. Funny how a match between two former fighters should have been a full-blown knockdown, dragout fight to the finish and instead, we got this... somewhat meandering fake MMA fight. I get what they were trying to go for here; going for a match that tied into their MMA backgrounds. And yes, I know that there's a crossover between MMA and pro wrestling in regards to fans watching both... but not everyone who watches pro wrestling watches or even cares about MMA (doubly so vice versa) and attempting a fake MMA fight is probably not the best idea. It wasn't very exciting, the crowd was practically bored, and for a match that's supposed to be writing off Ronda for the foreseeable future, this felt really underwhelming. It didn't please the WWE fans who don't give a shit about MMA. It didn't please the MMA fans who're rolling their eyes over the fake rasslers doing an even faker (shittier) MMA fight. I'd like to think that neither Shayna or Ronda were thrilled with how the match turned. Bad.

Thankfully, our next match sees reigning IC champ GUNTHER defeat Drew McIntyre in another "banger" as the cool kids call it to retain the title. Apparently, he's 30+ days away from becoming the longest reigning Intercontinental Champion of all time. The curse of the Honky Tonk Man is on the verge of finally being broken... so watch him drop the title on the season premiere of Smackdown to Logan Paul or someone stupid like that... maybe Miz. Is he still around?

Fake World Champion Seth Rollins and his ridiculous overcoat defeated Finn Balor to retain the title., where the finish saw Finn calling for Senor Bank winner PRIEST to toss in his briefcase... so that Seth can stomp Finn's head into said briefcase and get the pin. Stupid. Apparently, Seth was wearing the same game he had when he and Finn fought years ago for that other toy belt that's thankfully retired. These two guys work extremely well together, they had a great match, and thankfully, Finn isn't shelved with an injury despite the finish which looked like it sucked. So I'd say that was a win.

Oh wait, there's Miz. Being shoved into a box. Good for him.

Bianca Belair defeated WWE Women's Champion Asuka and Charlotte Flair to win the title in a thing that happened... clearly AEW aren't the only ones who need to book their women's division better... and then IYO SKY cashes in and beats Bianca for the belt in like eight seconds or something. Well, so much of Asuka's limelight. I was really hoping for that Io Shirai/Asuka match for the title and I don't even know if we're getting that. Oh well.

Undisputed WWE Champion Roman Reigns defeated Jey Uso after Jimmy Uso superkicked Jey to retain the title. This was a complete and utter waste of time. It ran too long (over thirty fucking minutes), it dragged for most of it, the crowd did not give so much as a single fuck, and even worse, I actually fell asleep during this match and by the time I woke up, the match was already over. A match, by the way, where the ending was never in doubt.

This. This, right here, is why Cody should have won the title at Mania.

Cody vs. Brock was a fine program on its own and having the title on the line would've been a sweet deal. Honestly, despite the loss, Cody came out of that just fine. The Bloodline, on the other hand... yeah, it's a hot program. It's one of the hottest things they've got going and from a distance, it's quite compelling stuff... when it was Roman defending against Sami Zayn... or Roman defending against Cody Rhodes... because with those guys, there was always the possibilty that they might end Roman's reign once and for all. And yes, even Sami had that chance with the hometown support.

Jey Uso never stood a chance. Yes, he got the pin in a tag match... but all that meant was that Roman was going to get his win back. And sure enough, that's what happened. From a distance, the Bloodline stuff is compelling. But when you actually sit down and watch the stuff play out, the matches drag out for far too long and the interactions where they're trying to act come off as laughably bad. Pre-schoolers could act their way out of a paper bag compared to these schmucks. And all of that is to build to a match where the ending is never in doubt. Nobody believes Jey is going to win the title. Get the fuck out of here. It ain't gonna happen. It didn't happen in 2020. Sure as shit ain't gonna happen now.

But if you took the title out of the picture, then maybe - just maybe - he would've had a chance. If Cody had beat Roman for the title, then you'd have that chink in the Bloodline wall. That first crack that signaled the beginning of the end. The Usos could try and win back the tag titles, only to fail, leaving Roman and Solo to try their hand... and they'll end up failing and that's when the Usos decide "fuck this." and you continue from there. As long as there's even a sliver of a chance for Roman to be beaten, that's where you build intrigue. It's one of those reasons WWE doesn't like undefeated streaks; they couldn't tell interesting stories if the end result is never in doubt. And yet here we are in 2023; Roman is the unbeatable champion defending his title against a family member in a match where the ending was never in doubt.

Again, I get that the Bloodline is the hottest thing they've got going right now and at a distance, this is compelling stuff, but actually watching play out on TV, I'm amazed that people stick around after the awful promos and long, plodding main events. I guess when you take guys like Sami or Cody out of the picture and you keep it within the family, I'm less interested in this stuff than the great majority of people... but hey, it's working for them. I'll give it that much. I'll keep my distance as far as following the story because that's the only way I could follow it without falling asleep.

Did you know Becky Lynch vs. Trish Stratus was supposed to happen on this show, but didn't? Can't imagine why you wouldn't want that here... but then maybe that's a good thing. They're spared the overall taint.

So that was Summerslam, everyone. A long, meandering show that had some good stuff in it, but there was also quite a bit of bad stuff, lots of padding, and a main event that felt like a total waste of time. This was a disappointment in part because WWE PPVS/PLES/POSS/whatevers have been pretty good as of late, but on the other hand, it's only one miss in a string of relative hits. Better luck next time.

I guess we'll see how All In turns out at the end of the month. Hopefully, it'll be better than this.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Keep it real and keep it clean.