The Eve and John Conundrum

There came a point where I stopped bickering on a regular basis about how disheartened I was with the WWE Divas division. The wound on my forehead, acquired from banging it against a brick wall, would never heal unless I gave it time to scab. Reacting was always tempting. It stuck its middle finger up at me like smoking, sniggering, backpack-wearing teenagers on a school trip to London; beckoning one of the statuesque Queen’s Guards to buckle under the weight of their immature insult. This week, I snatched at that middle finger.

How did we get here? Why was it okay for the WWE’s top babyface to use derogatory language towards a woman, in front of children? We need to backtrack. The WWE is sitting on a goldmine in its Divas division. And yet, they refuse to plumb the depths of that mine to get to the good stuff. For a company so driven by profit, continually looking for the next big thing to keep fans interested, it’s just lazy economics. Why have a portion of your roster largely idle? The merchandising opportunities alone could be worth a fortune. I never understood why there were no LayCool t-shirts, for example.

There is a cycle of indifference at the heart of this problem. When it comes to long storytelling, indie wrestling matches can largely stand alone, and they’re no less enjoyable as a result. In the WWE, we need a sturdy narrative. We need verbal and physical dialogue that lead into the next week. We need peaks and troughs and, more than anything, we need to care about the characters. During the part of a show you care about least, you empty your bladder, or get something to eat, or chat to your mates. Enter the one-minute Divas match.

Give people a reason to care and they’ll stay in their seats. Come up with clever, forward thinking stories and the crowd will engage with the action. Trust that your female roster can perform as well as their male counterparts. Challenge them, and they’ll rise to it. If you work in a professional kitchen as a pot washer and stay a pot washer, you’ll never learn how to cook. But if the head chef gives you the opportunity to step up and be a part of service, you’ll acquire the skills you need to progress. It’s hardly rocket science.

Let the more experienced women bring the others up to their standard. Give them longer matches so they can learn from each other. The Divas aren’t all useless models, as so many like to suggest. The female roster is a mixture of indie graduates and athletes learning-on-the-job, just like the male roster. Beth Phoenix paid her dues in the indies, as did CM Punk. Eve Torres is a jiu jitsu expert learning the craft of pro wrestling as she goes. Dolph Ziggler was an amateur collegiate athlete who didn’t learn how to be a professional wrestler until he went to OVW. Nobody ever refers to Dolph as a model.

The WWE are like those people who buy expensive perfume and only use it on very special occasions. The rest of the time they just leave the bottle sat on their dressing table because it looks pretty. The Beth Phoenix vs Tamina Snuka match at the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view was like a gentle mist of CHANEL No. 5. Why not use it every week? Let’s have the best all the time. Nobody will ever  compliment you on the glass bottle you keep hidden away in your bedroom. Use it! Nobody ever compliments the Divas on staying out of sight. Use them!

At first glance, Eve Torres’s involvement with Zack Ryder and John Cena appears to be a small step forward. It’s a Diva taking centre stage in a big story. But the execution was less a dab of CHANEL parfum and more swamped in Britney Spears’ Midnight Fantasy eau de toilette. Its lack of class reeked to high heaven.

It is great that they wanted to give Eve a personality. It is great that they turned her heel. It’s great that she mixed with main eventers. It’s bad that they rushed the entire heel turn through in a matter of hours. It’s bad that, yet again, a woman is rarely made a villain in the WWE without her being linked to a man or without being involved in a superficial image issue. It’s so unbelievably boring, lazy and outdated. I wonder why Stephanie McMahon doesn’t make her team come up with something better. The answer I keep avoiding is that she may be her father’s daughter in the worst ways, as well as the best. It stings when your heroine doesn’t seem to represent the things you want her to.

Comparisons have been made between Edge and Eve. Edge did indeed use Vickie Guerrero’s position of power to serve himself. But the big difference there was that they were both the villains. The dramatic entertainment came in them slowly destroying each other. They deserved each other. Which leads us uncomfortably to John Cena.

Super Cena! Our hero. Children’s charity worker. Fighting the good fight, day and night. The role model. Setting the moral compass for kids everywhere. All this is what makes Monday night so upsetting. They made John Cena ‘that guy’. A lad. The most insufferable kind of man. Baseball cap on backwards, swigging cheap beer from a plastic cup, double-fist-bumping their buddies, bromancing about town and engaging in ‘the banter’. The kind of nauseating, testosterone charged chatter that some men partake in when they’re in the company of other men. The kind of banter where rape jokes are hilarious. The banter that allowed the offensive and now defunct UniLad website to operate. The lad culture that makes young rugby teams write lists of tour rules that allow cheating on girlfriends to go unreported.

With the language John Cena used towards Eve on Monday night, with his ‘skank juice’ and disease slurs, he aligned himself with ‘those guys’. The vocabulary made him sound about as eloquent as a Jersey Shore cast member. Yes, Eve was the villain, and yes, she revealed herself to be self-serving. But Cena’s reaction, while grinning, popping his Rise Above Hate t-shirt at the camera, and encouraging ‘hoeski’ chants, was hypocritical and confusingly out of character.

Much has been made this week of John Cena’s association with the Be a Star anti-bullying campaign. The initiative is a tricky concept to negotiate for a product based on people bullying each other. But it’s always seemed similar to the ‘don’t try this at home’ videos to me. They tell kids that any bullying they see on TV just isn’t cool in real life and explain that the bullies are mean characters.

The problem with John Cena is not only that he’s the number one good guy. There’s also such an extremely fine line between John Cena the character and John Cena the person, that any lapse of grace in either incarnation damages him somewhere. It’s not an easy place to be, but it’s the price paid for never being the bad guy, on-screen and in life. His choice of insults can’t just be put down to the script. WWE and its performers have to start accepting that they offer a unique, hybrid form of entertainment. It’s neither fiction nor reality and if John Cena is to set the example, he has to do it all the time.  They can’t ignore the impact his words might have on one sector of the audience to briefly win favour with ‘the lads’. Usually he thrives on not being over with that crowd.

In 15 minutes of television, all this succeeded in doing was making me wonder if by simply watching WWE programming, I’m trying to push a square peg through a round hole. Maybe this stuff just isn’t made for me. But I don’t want to give up on it. It’s easy to say ‘just leave it behind and concentrate on the indies.’ And I do watch and love a lot of indie wrestling. But they’re two very different entities. Both WWE and the indies offer things the other can’t, and when it comes down to it, I want to be around when the WWE’s penny finally drops.

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As per the new Wrestlegasm tradition, whichever of us loses the PPV prediction competitions has to write up the results. So guess who lost again? The Boss! I’m very grumpy and have spent the week skulking around the Wrestle Bunker with a permanent frown on my face while the Sidekick does his smuggiest  smug-face every time I walk past his desk. It also took me a good three days to get over the live PPV-watching jetlag, which didn’t help with the tetchiness. For the rest of this post, assume I have reverted to being the sullen teenager I was in the 90s, sucking on my baggy sleeves and rolling my eyes when it’s suggested that listening to a personal CD player in a restaurant is rude. This may or may not have actually happened. Aren’t teenagers absolute twats?

Dolph and Edge were up first and this was by far the best individual match of the night. To be honest, it was probably always going to be, but not only was the in-ring action brilliant, the interplay between Vickie on the sidelines and the boys on the other side of the ropes was magic. When Vickie tried to interfere with the match Kelly-Kelly, of all people, ran out to make sure that didn’t happen. It seemed random at the time, but it lead to a fantastic main event on Smackdown. I should learn to trust wrestling more. (N.B. Never trust wrestling. It will break your heart.)

Long story short, everyone was having a punch-induced nap apart from Edge & Dolph. With nobody to tell him off, Edge decided to initiate the Spear. Thrilling, of course. But more thrilling was the fact that we could now spear onion rings with crunchy sticks, as discussed in the predictions post.

Everyone woke from their slumber and Edge took the match with the Killswitch. All was buoyant in the Bunker.

Ah the Royal Rumble. The only show that can be opened with two title matches. Which leads me neatly towards Randy Orton vs Mizzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz-zzz-zzz-zzzz-zzz. Everything we said about this match turned out to be true. Miz was great, as always, but Orton was dull and managed to knocked the air out of every Miz move. We used this time to chat about nonsense, spear more onion rings and debate whether we should turn the fire on or not.

Not gonna lie, towards the end there I genuinely thought Orton was going to take it. But I was even more thrilled than usual to see the New Nexus bods trot out to distract Randy. He didn’t know where to look. What he should have done is kept an eye out for CM Punk, who was waiting to knee him in the chops with a GTS. From there is was a simple case of dragging Miz’s broken carcass on top of Randy and letting the ref do his job. The happiness continued in the Bunker.

To unleash a Kong or not to unleash a Kong? That is the question. The Divas handicap match was about to get going when the lights flickered and the anonymous GM did his/her bleeping email sound thing. YESSSSSSS! This is it! This isn’t going to be a handicap match. It’s a Fatal 4-Way. YESSSSSSSS! She’s here! I’ve wanted to see this for so long. Heeeeeere’s Ko….EVE? The entire world groaned all at once. It was like being told you were having an amazing dessert after your dinner and it turns out to be a rice-cake. It’s a shame, because I really like Eve , but if ever someone was used as a pawn for Vince McMahon to flip his middle finger to the internet, Eve was she.

With Eve in the mix, Bunker disappointment turned to quickly deciding how we were going to work the predictions. We settled on me sticking with LayCool and Andrew taking Natalya and Eve. The match itself was great and those little hints that cracks may form within LayCool at any time are always a tantalising reminder of what will be a brilliant story when Layla and Michelle finally go their separate ways.

So, who won this pre-Rumble tussle? Eve. Yes, EVE! After the collective global groan came the collective global ‘WTF-Just-Happened-Face’. I’m not sure Eve was ready for the heat she was thrown from the crowd, just for not being Kong. Still, this turned out to be a very important result in our predictions competition. Just a second, I need to put my teenage angst face back on.

Rumble tiiiiiiiime! Woo! Time to head to the kitchen and break out the WWE themed ice cream bars I made for the Sidekick and myself.

Ah-ha. When I tweeted about them on Sunday you thought I was joking, didn’t you? Wrong. They were delicious. If you’ve ever wondered what Mason Ryan and Beth Phoenix taste like (and we definitely have) they taste like……printer ink.

Where to start with the Rumble? CM Punk came in at no.1 and Andrew was already expecting to lose. Then when Daniel Bryan came in at no. 2, we both figured we were screwed. And to make me even more miserable, when the New Nexus and The Corre stormed the start of the match, I was waiting for them all to be disqualified, culling the quota of entrants and depriving me of Mason Ryan screen-time. Luckily, they were all sent backstage and the match began. PHEW!

Daniel Bryan was eliminated after about 20 minutes by Punk while I was out of the room feeding the cat. At least I didn’t have to watch Andrew begin his gloating fiesta. Much the same as last year, where Punk held a sermon in the middle of the ring and attempted to save every entrants from themselves, he managed to sweep the decks with his Nexus ship-mates at his side. Waiting for Mason to appear was absolute agony. And then….

Of course, their work was all for nothing. Super-Cena showed up and got rid of every single one. And not just the sidekicks, but Punk too. Then there was a whole thing where Hornswoggle came out and they practically tag-teamed everyone out of the ring. This didn’t do much to keep us awake at 3:00am. Wait, I’m forgetting something…….

I’d tell you how exciting this was, but knowing what happened on Smackdown this week, I’m on a Booker T embargo. I’ll discuss this more in our new feature, to be posted later tonight.

We were at the business end of the Rumble. It all becomes a little hazy from this point. There were so many possible winners and still no Trips or Kong. My fixation with the HHH comeback clouded my thoughts and, you know, it was creeping towards 4:00am. There’s only so much you can take in at this ungodly hour. It was safe to say that, once Sheamus was eliminated, Triple H was not coming back. It then became about Wade Barrett and Del Rio for us. Either one would have had us leaping in the air in our new pyjamas.

So this is it. It’s Del Rio. YAY! Amazing! He so des…..oh no. This can’t be. Santino? SANTINO is going to win the Rumble? FUUUUUUCK!

I suggest you take a moment to scan to faces of people in the crowd. This is wrestling.

Ah. It was just a joke. Oh WWE, you silly little sausage. You had us going there.

Jumping in the air in our new pyjamas commenced right about nnnnnnnow:

This is not an accurate depiction of myself and Andrew. We look much older.

After the ticker-tape had fallen we went to our respective wings of the Bunker and stared at the ceiling for a few hours. Europeans: how on earth does anyone sleep after a live PPV? If you figure it out, let me know. In 12 years I’m yet to solve the mystery. Luckily, I didn’t have to work in the morning. Being a hard taskmaster though, I put the Sidekick to work and saw to it that he didn’t fall asleep by poking his arm with a newly sharpened pencil every time he did the nod at his desk. MWAHAHAHA!

As a whole we thoroughly enjoyed the Royal Rumble. Sure, it has its dull moments, but it was miles away from being a bad PPV. Was 40 too many for one match? Maybe. But then, they needed the New Nexus to be in there and they wanted The Corre involved. That gives you most of the extras. Booker and Nash were nice surprises (assuming you hadn’t had them spoilt for you). The biggest surprise was the lack of HHH and Kong. Maybe the internet (including ourselves) should learn to shut up a little more. The more we want something, the less McMahon is likely to give it to us. We never learn.

The one thing I forgot to mention was John Morrison’s velcro-feet move. He jumped from the ring to the audience barrier, shuffled about, jumped over to the steps and made it back into the ring without his feet touching the ground. It was fab. Such a shame he can’t string a decent promo together. He’s some vocal training away from being a mega-star.

Okay, that’s another Rumble and another results post in me the bag. If you’ll excuse me I need to pull my fringe down in front of my face, turn my mouth downwards and do some more eye-rolling. God, teenage life was hard work.

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It was only when I started going back through all the shows from the past few months that I realised just how long it’s been since the last fashion post. And yes, I do go back through everything for these posts. Ded-i-ca-tion! Think about it…there’s been a major draft, some amazing PPVs, some of the roster were deported, and then they were allowed back in the country again. Some of the roster married each other, some big names have parted ways with the WWE (some voluntary, some by force), new stars have been made, new champions have been crowned (kind of), the first series of NXT finished, a new one began and the Nexus became part of the wrestling furniture. It would be impossible to run through every clothing related happening since Wrestlemania, but I’ll try to pick out some of the most memorable. You might need to go and get some tea and biscuits before you get stuck into this one. ‘Tis a long’un.

You better take a good look at that banner above the first paragraph, folks. Not only because we’re redesigning the site at the moment, but also because since I last did a fashion post, our favourite oiled fashion disaster has retired. Dave Batista, I miss you and your double-deni. Although, when I saw Big Dave covering up in a high-necked top and a cat-burglar hat a few weeks before he departed, I figured his time left with us was short.

The beginning of the end.

So, there’ll be no more near-naked Batista, sitting in the middle of the ring, sulking because things didn’t go his way. Let’s take a moment to remember…..

So what now for Dave? Rumour has it that he’s opened up an exclusive cocktail bar for select members of the community in Manhattan. I wish him all the very best.

Thanks, Adam.

As one veteran says goodbye, a new breed of superstars comes to the fore. Such is the circle of life. The Nexus may not have been around for long, but they feel like part of the family already. Look at them there in their cheapo t-shirts:

Their transformation from FCW wannabes to PPV hijackers was quite astonishing. Let’s take Justin Gabriel, for example. He was so cute before he turned bad. There he was with his dimply smile, ironed black hair and Matt Hardy inspired shirts.

Aww. Bless.

A couple of months, an evil streak later and……

Please note, as a face he wore white trunks and as a heel they’re black. Apparently, encasing your junk in white PVC means you’re angelic and wrapping it in black plastic makes you eeevil. Also the highlights and asymmetrical haircut. They’re eeevil too. Wade Barrett has only improved since winning NXT. He’s ditched the oversized winter coats and looks ever the illustrious leader:

It’s no wonder he beat David Otunga to the NXT trophy. Especially when Otunga decided to cover his head in stick-on plastic diamantes for the final show:

Dude! NO!

Otunga’s look hasn’t changed much since his rookie-hood, but Darren Young has had a major make-over. Personally, I’m not sure which is worse, so I’ll leave you to decide:

As for Heath Slater, he looked like a cock before he was on NXT, during and after.

Mmm. Ginger beard and girlie shades. Yum.

Our next batch of rookies don’t seem to display such extreme fashion guises. In fact, they’re fairly normal looking. Well, normal for wrestlers anyway. I mean, check out how miserable Kaval looks at having to wear his mentors’ home-made merchandise:

But don’t let grumpy-chops fool you. In his spare time, the man with the deepest voice I ever did hear likes to do a spot of catalogue modelling;

Look at all that smizing! Tyra would be so proud.

I’m sure his mentors would wholeheartedly approve. While we’re on the topic of LayCool, let’s have some REAL TALK.

Despite the fact that they appear dressed in increasingly elaborate self-branded outfits every week, not a single piece has appeared on WWEShop.com. Although, there is a youth Divas t-shirt available, so at least little girls have something to wear to cheer on the Divas now.

If WWE want to release some LayCool Flawless merchandise, I will most definitely buy it. Ms. McCool is now Mrs. Calaway, courtesy of her marriage to a certain Dead Man. And speaking of the Undertaker, you know you’re a wrestling fan when you watch the Eurovision Song Contest and assign wrestlers to the countries competing, based on their performance outfits. Clearly Taker’s a big hit in Eastern Europe.

Sing your hearts out, Ukraine and Albania!

Let’s move on. I just admitted to watching the Eurovision Song Contest. Quick! We need a more pleasant subject. Ah yes. CM Punk. Punk has gone through quite the transformation over the past few months. His once flowing locks were shorn in the name of defending the Straight Edge Society and I spent several weeks mourning the loss of his face.

Thankfully, just a couple of weeks ago the Big Show de-masked Mr. Punk and his face (plus shaven head) were visible again. Hooray!

It was rough, but we made it through and came out the other side stronger.

Going back to the ladies, my Maryse envy has been hitting new heights lately. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to be her or anything, but let’s be honest, the girl fills her clothes rather beautifully. I’m not sure a halter-neck string bikini and a cropped lace top are quite suitable clothing for jiu-jitsu training. Eve has the edge in the practical clothing stakes.

But Maryse’s in-ring attire is always ace and this dress almost made me give up on life. I can’t compete with that.

But you never know, maybe I’ll go through some sort of image evolution one day and end up looking that glamorous. Bahahahaha! I couldn’t even keep a straight face typing that. Someone who did go through an image evolution though was Shad Gaspard. He ditched JTG and his urban streetwear to forge a solo career. All was looking trendy:

Until…….

Yawch! Matt Striker should have a word in his ear. That's not right.

You know, when Dave disappeared I worried that I’d have nobody to follow regarding hit-n-miss fashions. But I had not anticipated the wonder that is the cougar herself, Vickie Guerrero.

She started off in her blouse and ‘mum-jeans’, but her efforts to impress and keep up with the youthful Dolph Ziggler have been nothing if not brave. Check ‘em out:

Eeeeek! Wait. That last one was a bit dodgy. Tight dresses with zips right up the middle scream ‘street-walker’. Not even Kelly Kelly can pull that one off.

OK. Maybe Kelly.

But it’s OK, kids. In recent weeks Mrs. G’s cracked open the summer wardrobe and thrown on some rather flattering sundresses.

So all’s well that ends well. Even if she doesn’t look very happy about it. I love you, Vickie.

Sunshine seems to either bring out the best in our sense of dress or the worst. Just think of all those outfits you wear on your summer holiday that you wouldn’t dream of wearing back home. Drew McIntyre, I’m talking to you:

But I'll forgive you because you were just back from your honeymoon with Tiffany and you've had a rough time of things lately.

Sheamus could teach Drew a few things about dressing for an occasion. While stranded in Belfast as a result of the Icelandic volcanic ash, Sheamus strutted around in a mighty fine ensemble of muted colours and handpicked items. Ok, so the tie probably should be on top of the shirt, but still, he looks good, oui?

I should move on before that underlying Sheamus crush rears its ugly head. I fear that I’m a change of hair-do away from swooning for Sheamus. As Sidekick Andrew points out every time I mention it “It’s the voice, isn’t it?” Errrr, yah! Show me a girl who doesn’t love a boy with an Irish accent and I’ll show thee a liar! And while we’re on the subject of crushes I’d rather not admit to:

Yep! Zack Ryder. While he’s in his ring gear… nothing. Not even a tingle. But in his civilian clothing (as above)…. WOO WOO WOO! Although, my real reason for mentioning he of the glorious tan is to report that he’s FINALLY dropped the half-tighs/half trunks hybrid and gone for more standard trunks:

While the Long Island Iced-Z reveals a favourable increase in flesh, Cody Rhodes seems to be becoming even more naked, and it turns my stomach slightly. I mean, look….

eww

The lack of knee-pads doesn’t help and when he opts for his light-coloured boots, the boy looks practically naked. Enough. Get him some tights and a vest.

So there you have it. That’s your latest instalment of WWE clothing triumphs and disasters. I’ve learnt a few things from this trip down memory lane. I’ve learnt that I miss Beth Phoenix, Triple H and Mickie James a lot more than I thought I did, and I’ve discovered a few universal truths that will never change. I shall impart this wisdom forthwith. Never forget these important wrestling fashion rules:

  • Mark Henry in speedos is like a car-crash. You don’t want to look, but you just can’t stop yourself. You probably should look away though:
  • Jerry Lawler will always wear horrendous t-shirts:
  • Use somebody’s clothing as a weapon against them and you will be fired:

smackdown(lite): bikini trimmer at the ready

Smackdown was left in the position of having to rescue Raw AGAIN this week! I’m concerned for Smackdown. It’s so perfectly balanced at the moment. Too much pressure to be the only show firing an all cylinders every single week might tip it the other way. Raw, you better start pulling your weight because I don’t want to have to check Smackdown in to The Priory suffering from ‘exhaustion’.  Maternal worry over, let’s get to the show.

It all got going with CM Punk, now a proper heel, back in the ring with another brief vilification of the audience. Much as I enjoyed the nuances of when he fell somewhere between being good guy and bad mofo, I’ve kind of been waiting or REAL HEEL PUNK to emerge. Announcer Justin introduced Jeff Hardy for a match between the two for the Heavyweight Title. Biggest belt of the show on FIRST? This match can’t be going anywhere. It wasn’t. The anger between them was so intense it took every striped official in the building, a couple of dudes in golf shirts and Teddy long to separate them.

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Just as it looked like things were cooling off, Vince McMahon showed up in a delightful shade of duck egg blue. OH MY GOD, has he actually realised Smackdown is the superior brand? No. Apparently, Teddy Long is still on probation and Vince was most upset that he appeared to have lost control of his roster. To ensure that the title match went off without a hitch, Mr. M announced there would be a special guest enforcer, who shall currently remain nameless, and the match would take place later on to allow everyone some time to regroup.

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Once the boss had left, Jeff flew at Punk again and they were prised apart. Again. Sheesh. What a start! Think we need some coolness to take things forward. Ahhhh, John Morrison. He of the well insulated ankles. He’s a trooper for coolness! Morrison was taking Tyson Kidd on again (first one was on Superstars. I missed it). Great match. I even managed not to focus on my overwhelming need to take a bikini trimmer to the confusing strip of pointy fuzz across Kidd’s hairline.

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It was even-stevens to begin with, but Morrison allowed to Kidd to take the lead, before turning things around and sticking the Starship Pain across his face for the win.

Cryme Tyme and Eve explained the word ‘pretenda’ to us in antother edition of ‘Word Up’,  which lead neatly in to a Jesse v Charlie Haas match. Jesse is going by the hip-hop inspired name of Slam Master J. I don’t know what to say about the match, but I do know that……

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Jesse Slam Master J won.

On we go, and it’s time for the fatal-fourway to decides Rey Mysterio’s Intercontinental opponent at Summerslam. Rey brought a booster seat out and joined JR and Todd in the commentary corner and…… hold on…..before we go any further…. what is wrong with this picture?

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First of all, Rey can’t possibly hear anything through those headphones with his mask on, unless he’s cut some sneaky little holes in the sides. Secondly, what’s happened to his chin? Did he ALWAYS have a miniature beard-bun there? Don’t move, I’ll get the bikini trimmer back out the bathroom cabinet.

R-Truth, Mike Knox, Finlay and Dolph Ziggler fought it out and it turned in to another wicked match. Even Knox looked good.  Dolph pinned Finlay for the win and went over to give Rey a slap. Finlay, grumpy that he lost to Ziggler, grabbed Dolph’s dorky hair and tried to pull him back in the ring.

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You must keep your eye on Rey Mysterio at all times. Look away for a second and he’ll be round your neck in a heartbeat, as Dolph found out. The Rey Mysterio shaped scarf will be available from WWE Shop when the Autumn rolls in.

All this testosterone is just lovely, but I could really do with tagging on to some girly chit chat. Ah, here we go. Maria and Melina are talking it up in the corridor.  Melina was all praise for how happy Maria appears to be these days but, as one of her BFFs, she wanted to make sure Maria was 100% certain Dolph was the right guy for her. Well, let’s be honest, he is kind of a prick, right? But Maria made it clear that his in-ring persona is not who he is with her. Hmm.

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Melina ain't convinced. Neither am I.

Oh Maria. It’s ok. We’ll be here when that horrible, sexy boy breaks your heart, k? kiss-kiss.

With Cryme Tyme getting a push to meet Jericho and Big Show at Summerslam, it was time for some PPV promo. See, Raw? That’s how you do it. Cryme Tyme’s match got more promo than Cena/Orton this week. Ridiculous! Anyway, you have to be pretty awful not to pull off a brilliant match with Jericho. JTG did not disappoint.  And I loved the ending.

Jericho stuck the Codebreaker on JTG and left him lying off the apron, under the ropes.  Jericho went in for the pin, but with his opponent still under the ropes, the ref refused to award the win.  Jericho finally agreed to drag him back inside the ring but in a moment of lapsed concentration, JTG flipped Jericho over and snatched the win, racing up the ramp with Shad at his before the enraged Jericho could do anything about it. Jericho’s exaggerated anger made me laugh out loud.

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Next, The Great Khali was up against Ricky Ortiz. This match felt redundant even before Ortiz was errrrm made redundant. It lasted just a few seconds and I guess it’s there to build this feud between Khali and Kane, but I’m struggling to summon up any kind of enthusiasm for it. The best thing about it was that Singh the Sidekick got dragged from the arena by Kane, only to have Todd Grisham recap it by saying……

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JR corrected his grammar by saying…….

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Oh, Todd. Even with all your mistakes, I still kind of love you. They may actually be the reason I love you. Though, not as much as I crush for        Josh Matthews. He’s little, I’m little, it works better. You understand.

I need a main event to refresh me after that last “match”. Jeff and Punk prepare to enter the ring, but we need to introduce the special enforcer first. Who could it be? Who could it be? Actually, if you follow the right people on Twitter you’d have figured it out already. A certain main eventer’s brother who had broken metacarpals, was complaining about the chaos of being in the hustle and bustle of New York this week. He was looking forward to getting back to North Carolina. If you can’t work that one out, you’re either really new to wrestling or I question whether your marbles are all in their bag. The special guest enforcer was…………….

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Matt Hardy, who looked awesome with that bitchin’ face tan, made his way to the ring. But who would he favour? Has he buried the hatchet and let the brother-on-brother violence go or will he be in Punk’s corner? Judging by the number of alcoholic beverages in Matt’s twitpics, I guessed the former, but what really happened?

The match was ok. I’m not entirely in favour of putting matches on weekly shows when we’re about to see them at a PPV, but Teddy Long slapped a Tables, Ladders and Chair stipulation on it for Summerslam, so that juices things up a bit. Punk was all set up for the pin when Matt Hardy dragged the ref out of the ring, forcing Punk to tell Matt off.  Distracted from the job in hand, Punk was pulled to the ground by Jeff, and was 1,2,3’ed out of the match by big brother.

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Punk wasn’t done. Now incensed that his win was scuppered, he returned to the ring with a steel chair to finish Jeff off.  Brutal! Punk smiled his way back up the ramp but was met at the top by Teddy, who announced the aforementioned TLC stip. Punk told Teddy to go and check on his poster boy and the crowd were left chanting TLC TLC TLC.

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I feel like someone just massaged my temples with warm fingers. Thanks, Smackdown. You’re the bestest!

smackdown(lite): hugs, ponytails and gbh

What with Shaquille O’Neal hosting an epic episode of Raw this week, Smackdown had a lot to live up to. But was Smackdown worried? Nah! Course not! It knows it’s still awesome without all the bells and whistles of the flagship brand.

Jeff Hardy kicked things off with a rousing speech about how his Night of Champions win over Preachy Punk wasn’t just a personal victory, but a victory for everyone’s right to choose their own lifestyle.

Wrestlegasm.com does not endorse the misuse of recreational or prescription drugs.  If you're an adult, however, booze and fags are legal, so go knock yourselves out! Do not hold me responsible if you wake in bed tomorrow with someone you don't know and no longer thinks is hot. YOUR fault!

Wrestlegasm.com does not endorse the misuse of recreational or prescription drugs. If you're an adult, however, booze and fags are legal, so go knock yourselves out!

While Jeff was soaking up the crowd adoration, we were treated to a clip of a tender moment shared between Jeff and Punk after Night of Champions went off the air. The match had ended,  both Jeff and Punk stood in front of each other, and in an act of gentlemanly conduct, Punk held his hand out to Jeff. Jeff walked away, began sliding out of the ring, but then returned and shook the dejected Punk’s hand. Punk dropped his head and left the ring broken hearted. Oh God! How badly did Punk need a hug? I wanted to crawl inside the screen, press the side of his head to my bosom and tell him everything would be ok.

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I've been waiting for AGES for a reason to use this picture.

Moving on, it’s been a productive week for Cryme Tyme. First they get to kick it with Shaq and take Jericho and Big Show on during Raw, then they join Twitter and experience just ho demanding the public can be, and then they went on to claim a brilliant victory over The Hart Dynasty on Smackdown. This left them as number one contenders against Show and Jericho at Summerslam. BIG. WEEK.

Sidenote: There’s something very evil about Natalya. In a good way. She is the mastermind behind the Hart operation, with Tyson and David carrying out her devious plans. Very Lady Macbeth.

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As CT celebrated their week from heaven, Jericho and Big Show decided to rain on their parade and came to remind them they had no chance whatsoever against them ar Summerslam.  Jericho tried to explain further just how amazing they are as a tag team, but was interrupted by Shad, who compared to with Han Solo and Chewbacca. Brilliant! He then went on to try and communicate with Big Show in Wookie. Double Brilliant! The king of dead-pan didn’t get the joke……….

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…… and even though he tried to bite back, Cryme Tyme had a full tank of insults to throw back, courtesy of Mr. O’Neal.  Jericho and Show had the final word, but this sets up for an entertaining month ahead. Bravo, WWE. This totally works. What DOESN’T work, is the bad remix/combo track/whatever of Big Show and Jericho’s entrance music. Few missed beats there, guys.

I wasn’t really feeling the women’s match this week. Not sure why. Maybe it’s because, having defended the title at NoC, you would expect there to be some progression in the McCool/Melina storyline.  But it didn’t really materialise. At least on Raw, with the absence of Maryse, they started something new. Anyway, McCool and Melina were strong (especially the flexi-batics at the end). Their students,  Eve and Layla,  seem to be improving. Wax-on-wax-off, girls. Keep it up!

Back in Josh Matthews’ interview den, CM Punk swung in for a chat and was back on the whole Straight Edge thing again. He said he wants EVERYONE to live a Straight Edge lifestyle. Apart from me, of course. I know he’d turn a blind eye if I cracked a bottle of champagne when the two of us have dinner. Aaaand back in the real world, he also said he wanted to take on the winner of the Jeff Hardy/John Morrison match.

Next up, Dolph Ziggler was teaming up with Mike Knox to face Rey Mysterio and Finlay. At first I thought Dolph had gone for a haircut and became quite excited at his new, shorter locks. I like men with really short hair. And I’m not just saying that ’cause my boyfriend has no hair. It’s the truth. Unfortunately, it turned out to be one of those hideous little ponytails. Shame! Maria, how could you let your man walk out like that? Bad girlfriend!

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Great match though. An excellent performance by all. And I was TOTALLY involved in the high pace of the ending. When I’m watching a show alone and I still shout Oooh! Aahhhh! Yeaaaah! Take that, Bitch! at the screen, it’s a cool match.  I’d like to see some verbal battles between Dolph and Rey next week, please. Thanks.

John Morrison did a little promo where he tried to knock Kofi Kingston off the top spot as smiliest boy in the company and then we were in to his match with Jeff. Poet vs Poet. Artist vs Artist.

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Pretty.

Actually, Khali and Charlie Haas fought before the big match, but it was so rubbish I won’t bore you with it.

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So, Jeff and John. Firstly, if you missed this match and are here for a detailed run-down on how it played out….errrm….you took a wrong turn on your Google search somewhere. Read the About page. Secondly, if you missed this match, shame on you. Look for a replay on our local TV channels, go to youtube, go to Hulu.com (if you’re lucky enough to live in America and have access to Hulu), download the torrent, whatever. Just make sure you find it. It was brilliant. And long. That’s what I love about Smackdown at the moment. They’ve got the confidence to trust their guys to put on an entertaining, pacey match without rushing to the pinfall within a few minutes.

If John Morrison isn’t headlining PPVs within a year, I’ll eat my WWE bath towel. Yes, I do own one. Two, actually. And a John Cena and Triple H  cushion. Yes, I am grown woman. What’s your point???

It all came to a climax when Morrison went to stick the Starship Pain on Jeff, but found himself doubled over in actual pain when Jeff lifted his knees at just the right moment. Twist of Fate, Swanton Bomb, 1, 2,3, game over.

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Ah-ha! But it was NOT game over. At least, not for Jeff. CM Punk strolled down the ramp, clapping as he went, and joined Jeff in the ring. He raised Jeff’s arm aloft, the crowd went so nuts they almost collapsed in cardiac arrast, and Jeff looked flummoxed.

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It looked as if Punk was about to apologise for being a buzz-kill for the past few weeks, but just as he began to speak he walloped Jeff in the head with the mic and began his “heinous assault” on Jeff. (Thanks, JR).  So just as we thought this feud might be fizzling out in favour of something new, Punk kicked it up a notch. Fantastic!

TOTALLY morally acceptable, right?

TOTALLY morally acceptable, right?

It all came to a close with Jeff requiring major medical attention and Punk ordering us to watch next week’s Smackdown, where he’ll be taking his belt back. Your wish is my command, honey.

smackdown(lite): eh-men

After the ridiculous dramatics of Trump Buys Raw, I was looking forward to the understated genius that is Smackdown. To kick things off, Josh Matthews decided to hold an in-ring interview with Jeff Hardy.  First, Josh reminded him of his win over Edge at Extreme Rules. Ahhh. Good times. But then he reminded him of how CM Punk cashed in his MITB contract just seconds later. And theeeeen, just to rub even more vinegar in to the gash, Josh went on the remind Jeff that he had been SOOO CLOSE to regaining the title on the special Raw earlier in the week, but Punk had foiled his plans again and kept the belt. Bloody hell, Josh! How about you remind ME not to call YOU next time I’m feeling a bit blue.

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Jeff was given  a moment to leave his failures in the past, so it’s only fair that CM Punk has his say too.  The crowd are still confused about what to make of New Punk. It’s kind of like when New Wave music hit in the very early 80s. It’s not hard, it’s not soft. Kind of in the middle. New CM Punk is the Blondie of WWE, but with black hair and strange insomnia bags under his eyes. Phillip, get some sleep chicker, or at least borrow some of Debbie’s concealer. (BTW I’m not actually old enough to remember New Wave ‘hitting’. I just watch a lot of rock-docs.)

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They ALMOST did the Drugs v Just Say No story, but they bottled it. Chickens! They just skated around the topic, like the Seinfeld ‘The Contest’ episode.

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During the break, Punk left and Jeff stayed to have a roll around with Jericho. This match had no reason, other than to be exquisitely entertaining and not to ruin the PPV matches by showing us something we have the priviledge of paying to see a couple of weeks later. But wait, there’s a twist. A simple but perfect twist.  The front row directly left of the ramp was graced with three guys in Rey Mysterio face-shirts and masks.  Ah! But! One of them WAS Rey Mysterio. At an opportune moment Rey jumped the barrier, swung his legs around Jericho’s neck, took him down and jumped back in to this seat. Naturally, the referee was otherwise engaged in the ring and missed the whole thing. With Jericho dazed and confused, Jeff was able to make the pin for the win.

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PSSST! REY! The guy behind you with the camera is blowing your cover.

Oh, Smackdown. It you were a fella I would have the biggest crush on you right now. I’d write I <3 SD on Post-Its and stick them all over my office. Which would be quite embarrassing as I am:

a) a fully grown lady

b) more immature than the students I try to teach how to be a grown up

Anyway, backstage Layla and Eve were arguing over who a can of hairspray belonged to. Yeah. Really. They needed Maria to separate them and allocate the spritzer to Eve. Seems the dance-off, the arm-wrestle and the cat-fighting was all worthless ’cause all they needed was a gentle word from Freuline Maria. Who knew? Their moment was interrupted by Dolph Ziggler who, by some freak of nature, I am starting to dig. DOH! The ladies pretended they didn’t know what his name was and he skulked off in a mood.

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His match with Khali was kind of a wipeout. Ziggler won via DQ. I’d like to see him get  a feud going with someone else. I’m kind of biased against Khali.

He's the shame of sexy? Duh! Actually, Todd looks amazingly handsome in that picture, so he may be in with a shot.

He's the shamen of sexy? Duh! Actually, Todd looks amazingly handsome in that picture, so he may be in with a shot.

Alright, time for the girls to get up and, oh boy, am I happy there’s going to be a Women’s Title Match at The Bash. There hasn’t been a proper Women’s division match at a PPV since before Wrestlemania. Alicia Fox took Melina on with, of course, Michelle McCool at her side. The match was fine.  I think at one point Todd Grisham might have said “you’ve gotta bend Melina pretty good to make her scream.” Oh, Todd. You like to pretend you know that from experience, don’t you? Melina went on to win the match but Michelle took exception, kicking her in the face and out the ring.

But here was the shocker….. Michelle took a microphone and SPOKE! Yes, a women’s match at a PPV AND a promo. My cup runeth over. Although, the lack of mic time might have hampered Michelle’s delivery technique. She seemed a little….awkward. But I don’t care. A promo, however disjointed,  from one of the girls totally made my day.

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Alrighty. Back to the boys and Edge was in the ring, not too chuffed about being paired up with rising star, John Morrison. I swear, every single time I write about Morrison I type ‘Jim’ and then have to backspace for ‘John’.  Anyway, Edge accused John of wanting to ‘be’ him. Morrison responded by doing a REALLY bad Canadian accent, and he told Edge he’d better stop complaining of he’d give him something to complain about. Oooh. Handbags at dawn.

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It's rai-ning eh's. Halleluiah! It's raining eh's, eh-men!

I heard lots of talk about the mainstream introduction of The Hart Dynasty last week, but Morrison’s big match with Edge was an understated big-deal too.  Definitely a step up the career ladder. Brilliant match! BRILLIANT! Edge took it with a spear, but it was so good. How many times can I say I love Smackdown before I get so annoying people stop visiting? I think I’m probably on the borderline right now. I’ll stop.

R-Truth and Cryme Tyme took Charlie Haas, Shelton Benjamin and Ricky Ortiz on in a three-man tag. It was fine. Ya know, as expected.

Fresh from his stint sitting in the crowd, Rey Mysterio made his way past the crowd and jumped in to the ring. You know what I was thinking when he was touching foreheads with the masked kids this week? That he must whisper inspirational phrases in their ear. Life-affirming statements that will carry them through their adolescence and in to adulthood.  Stuff like this maybe…….

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Ah. If only I’d touched faces with a masked wrestler when I was a kid, maybe I’d have been a superstar. *day-dreaming*. Anyway, Mysterio challenged Jericho to a rematch so he could regain his Intercontinental Title. His speech was interrupted by Jericho who, after a beautiful verbal tustle, told Rey that if he wanted a rematch he’d have to be willing to de-PVC his face if he lost. This was all agreed so we’ll see  how that pans out at The Bash, but it’s pretty safe to say we won’t be seeing Mysterio’s face any time soon. Or will we? Oooh.

As Smackdown is all about delicately interwoven storylines that don’t need to show you a PPV main event before the PPV, Rey Mysterio stayed in the ring to go up against CM Punk while Jericho slid over to JRs hip, donned a headset and spoke mean words about Rey.  Jericho is wicked on commentary. Seriously. He never runs out of the perfetc words. Take note Rhodes and DiBiase. Stringing a coherent  sentence together is part of your job. K?  When Jericho reaches retirement, PLEEEEASE give him a commentary job.

By the way, don’t think I didn’t notice at the beginning of the show that Punk was back in his lavender tinted shorts again. The article of clothing that made CROTCH WATCH possible in the first place. So just in case you thought the white trunks on Raw were a fluke…. see? He DOES like the attention.

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The match was moving along nicely when Jericho jumped out of his seat, drove Mysterio in to the turnbuckle while the ref was twiddling his thumbs and left him in the grip of a count-out. Rey managed to drag himself back under the ropes but Punk stuck the GTS on him and it was all over. Being the fine, upstanding citizen he is, Jeff Hardy could not ignore the injustice he had witnessed and tried to reason with the ref and Punk. Neither wanted to listen , Punk was booed and he held his belt aloft and exited the arena. Game on!

smackdown(lite): sleeping with a punk

It’s fair to say that Smackdown had its fair share of drama at Extreme Rules. I’ll do my best to work in what happened, otherwise it just ain’t gonna make sense.

First person to the ring, CM Punk, with the heavyweight belt around his waist. Yes, you are correct. Punk cashed in his Money in the Bank contract at Extreme Rules. But not against Edge. Against everyone’s favourite Fonzy…..Jeff Hardy. SHOCKER! IT WAS AMAZING! I LOVED IT! Punk turns heel then. Or does he?  He didn’t seem too mean and menacing standing in the ring.  He even said “That doesn’t make a bad guy.” True heels don’t CARE that you think they’re a bad dude. In fact, they WANT you think they’re a bad dude. I’m confused.

Anyway, Punk went on to say that he plans on bringing some dignity back to the belt. But as he spoke some music hit. Can you guess which music it was? Correct. Go on, you know you want to play it.

I kid. But yes, it was Jeff and uh-oh, he ain’t happy. In fact, he’s so furious he didn’t concentrate when he was getting dressed and pulled on some jeans from the 1986 dress-up box.

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They argued the toss about whose fault it was and Jeff demanded his rematch THAT NIGHT. But someone else had something to say. Edge butted in and was made to feel wholly unwelcome by his two colleagues. Well, at least they agree on SOMETHING. Oh, I should say, Punk had an amazing match with Umaga at Extreme Rules which subsequently left Umaga unemployed. Hence the new feuding.

The tustle went on and Edge tried to claim that CM Punk was trying to emulate him. Errrrr, yah, cause they look sooo alike, right? Nope. He claimed that Punk’s Straight Edge lifestyle was named after him….. yeah, sure, a 30-year old lifestyle movement was named after a wrestling character. Whatever gets you through the night, sweetie.

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Edge thinks Punk is crushing on him, Jeff wants Punk to be crushing on him, Jeff hates Edge but Punk's really crushing on John Morrison. (Not in the triangle.)

Jeff ran out of patience, eliminated Edge but shoving him out of the ring, put the Twist of Fate and then a Swanton Bomb on Punk and hollered at the crowd from the top rope.

But wait, the situation still isn’t resolved. Teddy Long came out to announce that Jeff and Edge would have to fight that night in a number one contender match. Whoever won would face Punk on Raw on Monday. Yes you read right. Raw. Seems they got bored with the brand separation pretty quickly and are mixing things up in a 3-hour Raw tomorrow.  They had a PPV 8 days previous and now they’re having a free PPV style show where Raw should be. *shrugs shoulders*

Having just left the ramp, Teddy Long made his way back to his office to find Chris Jericho looking a little too comfortable in his leather armchair. I swear, he was a cigar, a scotch-on-the-rocks and a fluffy white pussycat away from being a bond villain, just, more naked.

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Jericho was feeling left out so Teddy gave him a match against Punk for that night. Yum!

Dolph Ziggler took Khali on AGAIN. Getting bored with this. Doesn’t feel like it’s going anywhere. Although, I’m pleased to report that after last week’s observation that Ziggler spreads too much goose fat over his chest, he seemed considerably less greasy this week. A triumph. Now, if he would just let me take the clippers to his horrible hair and ditch the camp leather waistcoat we may be getting somewhere.

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Ziggler was under the cosh so he grabbed Khali’s interpreter dude by the mutton chops and roughed him up a bit. Khali came to save him and got counted out, giving Ziggler the win.

Next up, a womens match. Michelle McCool and Layla (accompanied by A.Fox) v Melina and Eve. Michelle’s hair looked so cool. Come on, hair. Get BLONDER! Maybe I should try getting out in the sunshine instead of staying hauled up in front of a computer all day. Well, it’s up to you, I can either write stuff to make you happy or have blonde hair. The decision is yours.

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Layla and Eve were fine, but when Melina and Michelle were in the ring together it was AWESOME. Pleaaaaase give them a big  PPV match. They’re so good.

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Best move of all was when Michelle managed to counter a Melina move, dragged her off her back, pull her over the top of her shoulders and shimmied her down the front to put the Faith Breaker on her. I bloody love that Faith Breaker. Every time Michelle does it I swear her victim’s face will have turned concave, and yet they come out just as pretty as they went in. Mwah!

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PS> Please start selling Alicia’s t-shirt in the shopzone. Ta.

From female tag-teams to male couples, Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas v John Morrison and R-Truth. I’m just starting to realise that Shelton Benjamin is actually pretty buff. I think maybe the lightbulb on his head was distracting me from what was going on from the neck down. Nice work, m’friend.

Another brilliant match from these guys. R-Truth spinning Benjamin around by his feet and suspended from his neck was amazing. One of the things I love about Smackdown is that even the nothing matches, where nothing is on the line but pride, are a joy to watch. Ok, maybe not Ziggler and Khali….. but the rest. Morrison pinned Haas for the win and gave me my Man-Hug Moment of the week. Interesting that Morrison is often one half of a Man-Hug. I think he misses The Miz. He just wants a new BFF.

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At Extreme Rules Jericho beat Rey Mysterio and unmasked him as promised. Mysterio left the arena before anyone could really see him. On Smackdown he walked out carrying that same mask and held it up like that famous scene from Hamlet, where Hamlet finds the grave of his old pal Yorick, holds up his skull and remembers him fondly.

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But wait,  Jericho kind of despises Mysterio so that analogy doesn’t work. Fugetaboutit! The match was alright. Pretty good, but it didn’t really count for anything. And it was old heel vs new heel. They still cheered for Punk when he stuck the GTS on Jericho and took the match. See? It doesn’t work yet. Make him be really evil. Randy Orton evil. Now THAT would be sweet!

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Final match of the night was Jeff Hardy and Edge for that number one contenders spot. You know, considering they had survived an epic ladders match just 48 hours earlier, they did brilliantly. Seriously, they must have had a few tasty bumps and bruises from that match. CM Punk was at the commentary table and chipped in at regular intervals.

Jeff had Edge all lined up for the cover but he made the school-boy error or standing on the ropes for some crowd adoration and gave Edge the opportunity to sneak out of the ring while he was soaking up the love. Jeff came after him but Edge managed to grab him and chuck him at Punk, who was comfortably swinging from side-to-side in his swivel chair. Furious at having his swivel fun interrupted, Punk ran at Edge in the ring and the bell was tolled for the end of the match. All three punched it out for a couple of minutes but nobody knew who the number one contender actually was. Teddy?

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Tiffany, yes, she of ECW fame, announced Christian vs Dreamer for Monday night, and Teddy announced a triple threat between Edge, Jeff and Punk. I am more excited about this special Raw than I am for most PPVs. I think there’s gonna be a few surprises. Keeeep watchiiing!

smackdown(lite): now that’s how you make a wrestling show

Remember last week when I got all puffed up and tearful about the car crash television that was Raw vs The Denver Nuggets? The reason it got me so wound up was that it worried me that someone might have chosen that particular night to start watching wrestling for the first time and would have thought it was representative of wrestling programming in general.  For the complete opposite reason, I shall be holding on to last Friday’s episode of Smackdown, so that when anyone asks me why I enjoy wrestling I can give them a copy. Kind of like when my sociology tutor asked if she could keep my research project on British Soap Operas as Social Eduction so she could show it to future students on how to execute a media and society project. I’m still proud of that one. But enough of my personal triumphs from the distant past. Let’s go down some smack.

The blue Smackdown trucks rolled in to Memphis and appeared to have picked up a few accessories along the way. The arena was littered with ladder after ladder after ladder.  It looked like a cubist painting from the turn of the 20th Century. If Pablo Picasso were alive today he’d be in heaven. All those straight lines and obscure angles. I imagine his rendition might look something like this.

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I call it, Sea of Steel. (Title stolen from Jim Ross). PS> If you do the 'right-click, save-as...' on this picture, please credit it back to wrestlegasm.com. Thanks.

Beautiful! Even if I do say so myself. But that’s enough about art. Mainly because without the crutch of Wikipedia I know absolutely nothing.

Edge made his way through the maze of metal and called Jeff Hardy out to join him. Jeff made an impossibly long entrance to the ring, slipping some skin to all the kiddies screaming at him as he went. Well, he IS the Pied Piper of Wrestle World. Everyone dances to his tune. Not that I’m calling wrestling fans rats or anything. Oh, I think I need a new metaphor. I should prob go back to Fonzy. After ducking under every ladder in his path, Jeff  arrived in the ring but exclaimed that he would be decidedly more comfortable on top of a ladder and began climbing.

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Edge accused him of peddling false bravado and pandering to the sheep in the audience. No, Edge. RATS, not sheep. I’ll send him a copy of this for his birthday…….

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Edge continued and made sure Jeff knew that every time he made an attempt to reach for the belt at Extreme Rules he’d be there to knock him back down again. BOOO! He climbed to join Jeff at ladder height and they had a good old chin-wag about who would be victorious at Sunday’s PPV. Jeff explained that his free-spirit would be his salvation but Edge got all NUH-UHH, and whacked him across the temple with the suspended title belt. Not content with a mere slap to the head, he tipped Jeff over and he went flying down to the ground, his fall only broken by the ropes. But as JR so diligently reminded us, those ropes are made of encased steel, so not much of a soft landing after all.

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Great opener. What’s next? John Morrison v Shelton Benjamin. I love watching these two. They’re pacey, creative and so athletic is makes me ashamed of being so unathletic. No, it’s not just Ms. McCool who makes me feel like that. It was a great, solid match and I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of seeing the Starship Pain. AMAZING! But the most shocking moment of the match was the revelation from JR that the quadricep is the biggest muscle in the body. WHAT? I thought it was the Gluteus Maximus. Your ass is bigger than your thighs, right? He then went on to say that he remembers that from his anatomy days. Oh, you must be trained doctor then. My apologies Dr. Ross. No offense, but if I’m going to believe the medical ramblings of a Dr. Ross, I’ll stick with this one.

Look at the girl in the background who is supposed to be dead but is actually George out. George Clooney: So handsome he raises women from the dead.

Look at the girl in the background. She is supposed to be dead but is actually checking George out. George Clooney: So handsome he raises women from the dead.

Moving on and Chris Jericho was roaming the backstage area, which means he’ll be calling us all gelatinous again within a couple of minutes.

He strutted his way out to the ring, as he does, and began slamming Rey Mysterio and the audience. Ok, he didn’t say ‘gelatinous’ again, but he did use the words ‘zombies’ and ‘web of deceit’. COOL! But just as Jericho asked us if we’re fully clear on what he was trying to say, some music started playing. R-Truth? R-Truth is facing up to Jericho? I was not expecting that. He did his whole ‘WHAT’S UP?’ thing, asked Memphis what was up, and then asked Chris Jericho what was up with him. It was lovely, comedy moment because the contempt on Jericho’s face was priceless. He had that look my mother gets when I try to explain the purpose of blogging to her.

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Jericho went on, amazed that anyone dared to interrupt him in full arsehole mode, but R-Truth bit back. Much like Umaga, he’s allowed to speak now. YAY! R-Truth told him that just because he talked down to everyone, it didn’t actually make him badass. But he promised that things were about to get bad. REAL bad. Wheee! Match, pleeeease.

I wasn’t expecting them to work well together. Not sure why. Just not one I’d expect to see on the combo menu. But it was great. To be fair though, I think I sometimes forget how great Chris Jericho is in the ring. He’s got years and years of experience and this current persona he’s been dealt makes me forget how awesome he really is. Declaration of love over, back to the match result. Truth leaped from the ropes but it went wrong, he landed awkwardly and left Jericho with the pin. Better luck next time, kiddo, but welcome to the big-time.

Then, just as Jericho reached the top of the ramp and was about to exit, Rey Mysterio came running out, knocked him down and began pummelling him straight in the face. I may have misheard, but I think JR may have said that Rey was “going Medieval on Jericho”. Medieval? Like this?

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Men in tights and funny looking headgear? ‘Cause that’s a description of wrestling, right? Ok I think I’ve got the wrong end of the sword. The officials ran out, managed to prise Rey from Jericho’s chest and it looked like the moment of madness was over. But, just as Rey was about to leave, he made a flying leap off the edge of the ramp straight at the recovering Chris Jericho. IT. WAS. AWESOME. I love when Rey Mysterio gets all fired up like that. And I love you, Smackdown.

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Next, Umaga and CM Punk were up, minus their PPV stipulation.  Curious, but I’ll assume they know what they’re doing. I think CROTCH WATCH may have made CM Punk so uncomfortable that he’s completely ignoring me now. Not only has he stopped wearing my favourite lavender trunks, but has now taken to wearing black trunks in protest.  Sorry, Phillip. I’m not such a terrible letch. Honest. CROTCH WATCH will now take a hiatus until Punk feels comfortable enough to wear his lavender trunks again. At which point the whole cycle will repeat itself.

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The match itself was brilliant. Really. I know other people have said it, but it could easily have passed for a PPV match. I do wonder if they’ll have enough juice in the tank to improve upon the SD match. I know they’ll have the strap match stip, but still. I’ll make a recommendation. If the PPV match does fall short, let’s not complain. We’ll look back on this one and remember they know how to do better. Deal? It was all moving along beautifully but I figured it would probably go Umaga’s way in the end. NOOOOPE! To my immense surprise CM Punk, who my dad refers to as ‘weedy’, picked Umaga up across his shoulders, held him there and then dropped him like a sack of spuds in to the mat, pinning him for the win. OH. MY GOD. You know what’s coming, right?

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John Cena might be a tad pissed off that Punk stole his bit, but sod that. You know what’s better than a big muscly guy who can lift heavyweights above his head? A slightly less muscly guy who can do the same thing. Because that makes him kind of intriguing and surprising. SWOOOOOON!

After all that wrestlegasming (new word) I need a women’s match to give me a few minutes to calm down. Oh, whaddaya know? There’s one coming up next. What a coincidence. :D Michelle McCool, Alicia Fox and Layla(why?) were taking on Melina, Gail Kim and Eve Torres(I see) with Maria as guest referee. MARIA! SWEETHEART! Where’ve ya been, darlin’? I’ve missed you. Maria was wearing a rather fetching referee’s outfit, a little sexier than that worn by the guys.

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I’ll let you in on a little secret. I often think ‘If I worked for the WWE, what would my role be?’ Wrestler? Errm, no. My body ain’t perfect enough for that.  Commentator? Nah. I’m not quick enough. I doubt anyone would understand me anyway. When I get excited my accent gets a bit incoherent. Ring announcer? Possibly, but my entrance announcement for Randy Orton might go a bit like “OH MY GOD, Randy’s coming out, people. Ooooh, he’s so MEAN looking. RAAAAWR!” Fail. I usually settle for referee, but in a cute little dress similar to Maria’s, but more this kind of shape…….

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…..a bit vintage-y, but with black and white stripes of course. Right, so, the match. I LOVE the whole Hollywood paparazzi thing they do for Melina and Co. It seems minor, but it’s the fine details make all the difference.

Pretty good match. I thought Gail Kim was particularly wicked this week. When are we going to have a women’s match at a PPV again, Vince? It’s been AGES. TOTALLY unfair. I’d love to see Michelle McCool and Gail Kim in a big PPV match. It would be awesome. But one of them has to swipe the belt from Melina first. Someone sort this out for me, please? Thanks. The match was actually won by my fellow country-woman, Layla. I’m not really getting this, but whatever. Nobody in the company seems to care what happens to the women anyway. I’m pretty sure it’s all done randomly.

And just to sadden me even more, Great Khali is up next against Dolph Ziggler. Gag me with a spoon! I could not care less about Khali, and Dolph Ziggler looked like he just emptied three bottles of baby oil over his chest.

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But I did just realise this week (thanks to a pic in WWE magazine) that he used to be in the Spirit Squad, which made me point and laugh more than usual. Actually, I think at some point I might start liking Ziggler. I’ve got a feeling in my bones. I’m just not ready to give in yet. Khali won. That’s all you need to know.

Final match of the night was a Champion v Champion match – Rey Mysterio v Edge. More awesomeness ensued and Edge made the pin. Just as Rey was looking like he’d had enough, Edge added insult to injury and dragged a ladder from under the apron. As he prepared to put Rey’s lights out for good, Jeff Hardy ran in with a steel chair, whacked Edge down, set the ladder up in the corner of the ring, gave a nod and a wink to the crowd and performed a 15ft leg drop from the top of the ladder. I actually shouted “YEEEEEEAH!” when he did it.

JHLDONEYEAH

FAVOURITE CROWD MEMBER OF THE NIGHT

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This lady, right after CM Punk lifted Umaga. She’s got the head-tilt going on, she’s touching her hair. That’s the look of swoon. I’m with ya, darlin’. The dude sitting behind her is obviously an Umaga fan.

See you after the extremities, guys!