cool britannia week: part two

If you were one of the people who read this blog when I started it seven whole months ago, you may remember that one of my very first posts was about the fact that Rey Mysterio was doing a signing in Cardiff, which I couldn’t go to. I found out about it far too late and had to go back to my office. I made quite a silly drama out of it.

But no such worries this time around. Knowing the guys and gals of the WWE would be rolling into town on Monday and Tuesday of this week, I deliberately went looking for signings last Saturday. I want to shake a midcarder’s hand and someone better make it happen, damnit! I was starting to lose hope, until I rolled into Borders and saw a giant poster advertising a Kofi Kingston and Gail Kim signing on Tuesday. YESSSSSS! I quizzed the staff on the event and purchased my £5 worth of trading cards to get my ticket.

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On Tuesday morning I woke up in possession of three things. The disbelief that I was just 3oft away from CM Punk twelve hours earlier, the eyes of a panda thanks to the fact that I passed out with my mascara on, and a dilemma. A dilemma, you say? Yes, I say. Having had such a great time at the Smackdown show, I now wanted to go to the Raw show that night. Actually, I had wanted to go to both all along, but nobody wanted to drop the cash for two shows. I had to decide whether to go alone or skip it. The consensus was that I would hugely regret it if I didn’t go. On balance, the idea of spending the night with John Cena and Triple H seemed far more exciting than spending it watching Eastenders and Gok Wan on TV.  I made a decision.

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Now, time to think about Kofi and Gail. I had swung it with my boss that I could use some of my overtime and leave at 2:00pm for the signing at 3:00pm. Time to break out the Pepto Bismol tablets again. Much as the day before, I began getting excited enough that my stomach started tying itself up in slipknots. At this point it was suggested that I should just try being cool because it’s ‘just Kofi’. And it’s not like it’s Punk or anything. Honestly, if CM Punk was doing a signing, I’m not sure I’d even be able to walk through the door. I’d be too afraid of walking up to him and making involuntary and vulgar sex noises in his direction, ultimately being removed by security and arrested for a public sex offence.

There were some problems with this day. For starters, it was raining. And I mean REALLY raining. That in itself is not a surprise. It’s November in Wales. Rain storms are a daily and unremarkable occurrence. But I had to walk from my office to the other side of the city centre in drenching drizzle and my hair, which was beautifully coiffured in the morning, was sure to be flat as a pancake by the time I got to Borders. Also, I was in unglamorous office clothes and forgot to bring the programme from the show the previous night. I figured that adding a couple of autographs might add some value to the worst show programme in the history of show programmes. So I did the really sensible thing of forgetting it.

I made it to Borders and was buoyed by the fact that we were allowed to wait inside, away from the drizzle. Being about 40 minutes early I wasn’t too far from the signing table and expected to be on my way home and getting ready for Raw within the hour. I slowly shuffled from one foot to the other, checking the time on my phone, people watching and generally willing the clock to move faster. I hoped they might be slightly early as my green high heels, soggy from the puddles I splashed through, were starting to hurt. I switched them for the flat ballerina pumps I had in my bag…. because I think ahead when it comes to shoes but not when it comes to bringing merchandise to be signed. I wondered if Kofi would come running down the stairs like this….

But I suspected not.

I knew something was up when the staff started handing free WWE dog tags out to everyone. Clearly we were being pacified and being kept there for a long wait. The guy actually tried to walk past me without giving me a dog tag. How DARE he! I held my hand straight out and said “CM PUNK, PLEASE!” I got my goodies.

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I'm wearing my gift as inspiration as I write this post. I'm keeping him close to my heart.

An announcement was made that there would be a delay but we were assured that Kofi and Gail were on their way. UUUUURGH! As the guy behind me said “that’ll be another hour then.” He had no idea how true that would turn out to be. They were now 40 minutes late and I was starting to get very fidgety. I’m not very good at being still. Or waiting. At 45 minutes late I thought I’d been stood up. The people in front of me were giving them until 4:oopm and then bailing. I had decided I’d stay as long as possible.

Just in the nick of time, there they both were, clutching their red, Christmas Starbucks cups and looking very sheepish. “Sorry, guuuuuys! We got kinda lost!” It’s ok, Kofi. I forgive you. Funny how I completely forgot the annoying wait as soon as they showed up. Gail looked beautiful. She was wearing a short bejewelled dress and looked so glamorous she might as well have been on the red carpet at the Oscars. She certainly looked overdressed for Borders in Cardiff. But we certainly appreciated the effort.

Once things got started the line moved quickly and I found myself  waiting to be called up to the desk  in no time at all. Argh! I turned to the two blokes behind me and asked if they would take my picture. They agreed and I was called forward to meet Kofi and Gail. I repeat, ARGH! I stepped forward and, noticing I hadn’t brought anything to be signed (because I’m a fool), Kofi grabbed for one of the WWE signing sheets they had on the desk. “Heyyyy. How are you doin’ today?” he asked in a deep, silky voice. And then I made a complete idiot of myself. With a big grin on my face I replied “I’m VERY well thank you. All the better for meeting YOUUU!.” URGH! Even as the words spewed out of my lips I was thinking SHUTTUUUUP! The only thing that would’ve made me more cheesy would have been if I’d winked at him and done my best Joey Tribbiani impression. Like this…

Thankfully, Kofi is a super nice guy and said “Awww that’s nice. That’s nice.” I didn’t feel like such a cheese monster after that. He passed the sheet over to Gail and I asked if I could shake his hand. “Of course” Kofi said, as he proceeded to squeeze my hand.  SWOOOOON! I told him it was lovely to meet him and he returned the sentiment. I don’t believe him for a second, but it sounded sweet. Gail was quiet as a mouse, but I told her the same, she returned the compliment too and I shook her hand.

I tried to come in beside Gail to have my picture taken, but the angry security guard put his arm in the way and stopped me. Idiot! I mean, I know some nutcase punched Leona Lewis in the face when she did a signing a few weeks ago, but do I really look all that menacing, Mr. Security Guard? I’m just a girl in office clothes with flat, damp hair hoping not to look too hideous stood next to the stunning Gail Kim.  All he would let me do was lean into the desk. Never lean IN to a picture. Everything falls forward. Not flattering. I learnt that from Madonna as a kid and I never forgot it. I had no choice, so I leaned in as graciously as I could and the guy snapped my picture. This picture was the result of all this nonsense.

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In my excitement I forgot to take my glasses off too. They are the WORST glasses for pictures ever.

Satisfied that I had my autographs and picture I moved away from the desk to put my coat on and compose myself. I grabbed my stuff and walked off down the street. But something was wrong. I had forgotten something. After all that time waiting, I had left my autograph sheet behind. OH MY GOD! Could I be any more flaky?  I ran back and, luckily, it was still on top of some books, where I placed it while I put my coat on. PHEEEEW! Back in the shop I decided to stick around for a few minutes and watch Kofi and Gail at work. It may be an act, but they seemed like genuinely lovely people. Kofi is particularly good with the kids. It was cute to watch him striking up a new conversation with each child and watch their faces light up as he engaged with them. They probably felt the same way I did.

Doing it for the kids.....and me.

Doing it for the kids.... and me.

From there  I made my way home. I had to primp myself a little bit for the Raw show.

My next task is to find a frame for this fabulous piece of paper

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As I have mentioned before, finding time to update this blog can sometimes be tricky. But I can guarantee you that it’s never far from my mind. This was never more evident than this Wednesday night when I actually created some content for the blog IN MY SLEEP. Now, I wouldn’t normally publish Tales from My Subconscious, but since it’s relevant to the Crotch Watch segment (whoa, big surprise) I feel like I should share. Don’t worry, it’s not that sordid. It was surprisingly un-sordid (is that a word?)

So, the dream. It starts in a unisex locker room (unisex = co-ed, for the North Americans). I have got a swimsuit on and I’m washing my hair under one of the showers. In walks CM Punk. He’s just finished a match with whomever he was pit against and gets in an already filled  bath, which happens to be opposite my shower. He still has trunks on. They’re the white ones, in case you care.

Then went a little something like this.

They went a little something like this.

He’s on a post-match high, babbling incessantly about the moves he pulled off and how pumped the crowd were. I nod along and respond at appropriate junctures. He appears to know me quite well and doesn’t seem surprised that I’m there. He rinses himself off, gets out of the bath, takes off his trunks and hands them to me. As my good pal Emma Monkey said when I relayed this sleeptime fairytale to her, ANYTHING could have happened next. It was MY dream. What actually happened was that as he handed me his trunks he said “Wash these for me next time you do some laundry?” I took the trunks and he walked off (naked) to get changed.WHAT? In the dream I was totally cool with this and said yes. When I woke up, I was quite annoyed with myself. I need to master lucid dreaming. I could have given that dream a whole new outcome.

My subconscious SUCKS!  It seems I am nothing more than a washer-woman for CM Punk’s sweaty wrestle shorts. Excellent! Even my sleeping brain is against me. It may be that I’m just missing the famed lavender and white trunks. Since Punk went full on super-heel, he’s been wearing deep, dark colours. Dark blue last week, then black and red stars this past Friday. Well, let’s be honest. Lavender doesn’t necessarily scream “I’m gonna kick you in to the middle of next week!” These are “take me seriously or regret it” trunks.

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Have you ever had any wrestler related dreams you’d like to share with the interweb? Feel free to leave a comment, but nothing so vulgar I’ll have to delete it. You know who you are.

Honourable mentions for this exciting installment go to two of the Raw roster.  First up, Randy Orton. Who emblazened his groinal area with a yellow design based on the spiked tribal tattoo across his back. I do actually notice these little details, you know. Nice work, my friend. If he’d asked I would have put him in this post anyway, but the fact that he’s gone that extra mile and had some new trunks made is very impressive.

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Second honourable mention goes to The Miz. Last week he was a tights wearing loser, having been booted out of the company as the result of a lumberjack match against John Cena. A week later, he returned in communicado as The Calgary Kid. Of course, once all was revealed and The Miz showed his face, the initial excitement tempered. But what a difference a week makes. The trunks definitely look better than the tights. Kind of like when you wear a short skirt and cropped  leggings thinking the leggings will make your legs more slinky. Not necessarily so. I suspect he’ll go back to his regulation tights tomorrow night, but hey, for one week only it was su-weet.

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My favourite girlie outfit came in the form of Gail Kim’s Raw outfit this week. Red and gold glitter = FIERCE!

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Tyra would be so proud.

One final thing, now that Kelly-Kelly has taken some advice and has invested in some professional wrestling boots, she probably has several pairs of high-top sneaks hanging round her house. Since these guys are always on the road and don’t have much luggage room, she won’t really need them, so I’m quite happy to take them off her hands. I’m renegotiating my style at the moment. A couple of pairs of high tops would fit right in. Thanks, Kel.

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raw(lite): oh canada! oh jericho! ohhhhh yessss!

In theory, this post should have been up on Tuesday. Thursday, at the latest.  But I actually found myself spending my evenings doing some research for a piece for college this week, so it’s been delayed. And it has nothing whatsoever to do with the fact that I took my laptop to bed last night to finish this post and ended up falling asleep with a copy of Rock Sound Magazine open on my lap. Nothing at all.

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This week’s Raw was comforting. It was a reminder that the show can function very nicely without the crutch of a two-bit celebrity and a reminder that all the talent they need is right there already on the roster. Ok, Sergeant Slaughter isn’t technically on the roster but you get what I mean. Was it the greatest Raw? Not even close. But it was a marked improvement on last week’s show, which gives me good feelings all over.

We started with Randy Orton, in the ring, belt aloft, beautiful. Randy has been kind of out of the loop the past week or so, what with all the celebrity interference. Or maybe I just missed him. Or maybe his thighs just got extra spectacular since last week.

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Well done, babe. I was right behind you. I did 6.4

So what we have here is your classic PPV promo segment. Hallelujah! You’re kind of late to the Summerslam party, Raw, but let’s boogie! Randy began by reasserting his super-heel status via the belittlement of the Calgary audience.The ‘YOU SUCK’ chants erupted around the arena, which Randy TOTALLY got off on. His microphone almost got some very exclusive ‘oral pleasure’.

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He also made it clear that he would be making mincemeat of John Cena at Summerslam, contrary to the rumours circulating that John had the upper hand.  John, as you would expect, had a response. So he made his angry way to the ring. Uh-oh! John is pissed. ROYALLY pissed. I have a feeling his temper may blow its banks, causing my insides explode from the excitement. KABOOOOOOOM!

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Wow! I haven’t seen John this furious since his mini-feud with Edge after Wrestlemania. It’s possible that I may have made a WHEEEEEE kind of sound while this little piece was going on. Make that ‘probable’.   I was getting tense just watching all that up-close jaw clenching. John got all up in Randy’s chops and it was a battle of wills to see who would go in for the kiss first.

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Much to my overwhelming disappointment, the imminent smooch was rudely interupted by Chris Jericho and Big Show. But my initial feeling of irritation was quickly replaced with delight at seeing Jericho’s new suit. I believe my Twitter went something like………..

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Speaking of Twitter, in the early hours of Monday morning, Mr. Chris Jericho was partaking in some rather amusing drunk tweeting. Due to my living seven hours  ahead of Calgary, I got to witness the whole thing from my desk at work. In case you missed it, my favourite was……..

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This late night revelry revealed itself on Raw. No amount of clever make-up and cucumber slices can de-puff eyes like that and if you wait for the close-up, they’re more than a little bloodshot.

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Anyway, the physical effects of the hangover did not seem to dampen Jericho’s enthusiasm. Being in Calgary seemed to buoy him up even more. Big Show’s opening gambit even had to be paused for a few moments while the crowd got their repeated Y2J chants out of their beer soaked systems. They calmed down, Show finished his speech and then Chris took the spotlight. He only had to open his mouth for half a second before the crowd lost their minds. Even John couldn’t hold his smile in when he was supposed to be all stern like.

Stop smirking, John. You're supposed to look pissed off!

Stop smirking, John. You're supposed to look pissed off!

All this culminated in Jericho announcing that Slaughter had given him a match against John, and Show was granted a match against Randy. Right, so we’re 600 words in and there hasn’t even been a match yet. Anyone would think I’ve got a thing for John Cena. And Randy Orton. And Chris Jericho. And Big…… three outta four ain’t bad. We’d better get a match in.

With Maryse needing her knee sliced open, someone had to step up to Mickie James. Alicia Fox, Kelly-Kelly, Gail Kim and Beth Phoenix went against each other in a fourway match to be number one contender. This was actually a REALLY good match. Ok, so it was always going to come down to Beth or Gail, but they worked really hard. And the powers that be gave them some time to build the match too, which rarely happens. Beth pulled off one of those highly impressive ‘marvel at my immense strength’ moves……

Anything John can do, Beth can do better, Beth can do anything better can John.

Anything John can do, Beth can do better, Beth can do anything better than John.

……but the pin eventually went to Gail Kim. I do feel a teeny bit sorry for the Glamazon. I mean, she stuck it out through that painful Santina period without much ‘ffws na ffwdan’ as we Welsh language speakers say. She kind of deserved a title run. But I adore Gail Kim, so no complaints from my bench.

NEEEEXT!

Sergeant Slaughter came out for the first of many insults to Canada. He demanded that they stand up and pledge allegiance to the American flag. Riiiiight! You might as well ask the Welsh to affectionately lick the English flag. NEVER. GONNA. HAPPEN.

I mean, look at that ferocious creature? Take THAT King George. You mess with me, my dragon kicks your arse.

I mean, look at that ferocious creature? Take THAT King George. You mess with me, my dragon burns your arse.

Jack Swagger made light but entertaining work of Evan Boure, which left Jack with bleeding gums. Mmmm, scurvy is the sexiest of all the vitaand min deficiencies.  M.V.P appeared and buttered the crowd up by knocking Swagger on his rather fine behind. Actually, that one looked like it really hurt. Nothing like a bruised coccyx to take the wind out of one’s sails.

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Montel challenged Jack to a match that night, but he refused, alluding only to the possibility of a match next week before disappearing up the ramp.

Remember last week when a disturbingly puffed-out Triple H vowed to make us all suck it? Well he was forced to travel to Texas to bring his buddy back from the brink of banality. (So many B’s.) I say ‘Texas’, but really it could have been any generic office building anywhere in the world.  HBK was discovered working as a chef in a trashy cafeteria and had been reduced to serving defrosted muck to ungrateful children. Hunter was not impressed.

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Back up North Eugene (what?) was taking on the Calgary Kid (who?) for a contract to get in to the company. Whatever. I honestly thought this was some kind of local joke I didn’t get, so I just rode it out until the Calgary Kid began pulling off the mask and I realised it was The Miz. The Miz, who everyone was SOOO upset about last week, was back. See? Didn’t I say he’d be ok? Listen to Auntie Ray. She knows stuff about shit. Or is it the other way round?

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Alright, next up Randy and Big Show were to tough it out. It was ok. I mean, Big Show is slow and Randy is deliberately slithery and calculating, so it felt like filler. Randy was getting beaten up so he left the ring and got himself counted out. Big Show sulked but who really cares.

Trips was making headway with persuading Mr. Hickenbottom to become Shawn Michaels again, but still no cigar. So we scooted over to Chris Masters vs M.V.P.  I notice Masters now enters the arena under the cover of darkness. Obviously a move to ensure we don’t see any more of his terrible tanning disasters.  M.V.P took the match within three minutes, but Jack Swagger made his way out, distracted M.V.P and gave Masters the nod to take him down.  Swagger jumped in to finish the job.

Back in Texas a granny snarled SUCK IT in to the camera and Michaels kicked a small child. I believe that means DX are back. Good work, Officer H. Now bring that boy on home. In the arena, Hornswoggle and Mark Henry fought Rhodes and DiBiase. Team Legacy won, giving them the opportunity challenge DX. I totally didn’t see that coming. So shocking!

Any excuse to use a pic of SJP.

Any excuse to use a pic of SJP.

I need me some Josh Matthews after that incredible shock! Ah. There he is, with Chris Jericho. WAIT! Did Jericho have that beard earlier? Maybe I was too distracted by his lovely suit to notice. I feel like I’ve seen that face-fuzz somewhere before. Oh yeah.

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In a moment of comedy genius, after praising Canada til the cows came home, Jericho made the faux pas of dissing it when he thought he was off camera. DOH! An oldie but a goodie.

Exactly.

Exactly, Chris.

The final match, Jericho and Cena, was moving along swimmingly and it appeared that Cena had the upper hand when he hugged Jericho in to the STF. But Randy soon appeared, started doing a strange twitchy dance in front of John and distracted him long enough for Jericho to bring him down. Big Show got involved, things got messy and Slaughter had to bring the troops to order. He commanded that Jericho and Big Show tag team against Cena and Orton next week. Ooooh, I wonder what Buffy’s husband will have to say about that. Well, John-Boy, you kept saying you wanted to work with your BFF, now you’ve got your wish. Big Show was rolled out of the ring like a humongous log and as John threw Jericho on to his shoulders for the Attitude Adjustment, Orton ran in and RKO’d Jericho back down again. It was AWESOME.

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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.

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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!

smackdown(lite): plaid, cupcakes and champagne

I won’t lie to you, last Friday’s Smackdown was a little lacklustre. It was inevitable really. For what must be the first time ever, Smackdown reigned supreme at a PPV. I imagine all the SD folks downed a few martinis and threw lots of smug looks across the dancefloor at the Raw roster. All apart from CM Punk that is, who had a mango mocktail. One of the nice things about not affiliating myself with one particular brand is that I can jump ship when one goes bad and make babies with the other when it gets all seductive. From now on this will be referred to as Brand Whoring. So, Smackdown, despite not fully lighting my fire this week, I forgive you. Just for the time being. I’ll probably swing back the other way at some point. I’m fickle like that.

Making babies with Smackdown

Making babies with Smackdown

Anyway, rather than try to give you a detailed recap, I think I’ll just speak about some of the more obscure things I noticed this week. My mind wanders. A LOT.

So, we got started with Edge, wearing an awesome plaid shirt. For real, I LOVE them.

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For a couple of years now I’ve been searching for the perfect plaid shirt. Not as easy as it sounds. Stretch-less cotton, buttons, more than my fair share of breastage, a busy pattern…. it’s a nightmare. When I eventually find one that fits without exposing my undergarments I may laminate it and put it in a cabinet for prosperity. Wait, that would defeat the purpose of the search. I digress. This is how not to wear plaid…….

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Teddy bitched at Edge for his illegal win against Jeff Hardy at Judgment Day. Edge retaliated but then the Pied Piper of Wrestle World, Jeff Hardy came out and bit back. He pulled out the old ‘say-the-name-of-the-town-you’re-in’ trick and whipped the crowd in to a frenzy. When he took a poll of the audience to see if they wanted to see him fight Edge that night (DUH! OF COURSE) they all dutifully replied. Either with YEAH of HELL YEAH. I’d have have loved if someone with a little quick wit had come out with something like this………………………

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Next up, Cryme Tyme (OMG they’re actually going to wrestle) teamed up with John Morrison to take on Ricky Ortiz, Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas.  Ortiz was referred to as the Richard Simmons of the WWE for his motivational speaking skills. I would like to make a pact with the commentary team…. YOU never mention Richard Simmons again, and I promise to always say nice things about Todd Grisham. The mere mention of that man makes me want to vomit. He gives me night terrors. Simmons, not Grisham.

Josh Matthews interviewed Melina about the number one contender match between my number one girl-crush, Michelle McCool, and my favourite Cool Asian, Gail Kim. Alicia Fox came to deliver a message from Michelle, called her ‘cupcake’, and then all I could think about was this……

A cupcake, not Melina. I want cake about 80% of the time.

A cupcake, not Melina. I want cake about 80% of the time.

Also, I was pretty sure Melina was going to plant a Glasgow Kiss on Alicia, but she just went with a regulation bitch-slap instead. At least she didn’t follow Maryse’s lead and blast her fro with Glow by J-Lo or something. SIDENOTE: I thought about Michelle McCool when I was doing sit-ups in the gym tonight. I figure I probably worked 50% harder thanks to her. Or rather, my embarrassment at NOT looking like her spurred me on. On to the match…….

Pretty good, actually, even on a lacklustre show. Ah, that would be because there was NO women’s match at JD. They were a little fresher than the guys. Michelle pinned Gail for a shot at Melina’s belt.

That's what I look like when I close my eyes.

That's what I look like when I close my eyes.

Moving on swiftly, JR interviewed Rey Mysterio from afar. What, they couldn’t put them in the same room? I REALLY wanted to take the mick out this, but I can’t. Rey Mysterio is too sweet to make fun of, so he gets a really thick sarcasm immunity shield. And anyone who makes the dreams of small children come true kind of has a piece of my heart without even asking. I won’t recap the whole interview, but if you’ve ever wondered why Rey wrestles in a mask, it’s your lucky day. Reasons include:

  1. hiding hideous scales on face  (aww, don’t be so hard on yourself, nothing a little exfoliation couldn’t clear up.)
  2. tipping the nod to heritage. it’s all about the roots, babeh.
  3. symbol of hard graft.
  4. it looks cool.
  5. it gives super powers.
  6. not Rey Mysterio without it.

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Thinking about buying a mask now. The sales pitch worked. My mask-less face is SOOOO uncool.

Back in the ring CM Punk is up against Chris Jericho. In CROTCH WATCH news, Punk was wearing the same trunks he wore at Judgment Day – the dusky blue with tangerine coloured Chicagoan stars.

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Umm, Phillip, I hope you washed those….wearing them twice in THREE days and all. I told you to leave your laundry in the basket by the washing machine so I could do it for you while you were training at the gym.  I did promise I wouldn’t put them on the hot cycle and shrink them again. Your suggestion that I purposely made them two sizes tighter is an outrageous accusation. I only meant to make them ONE size tighter.

The match wasn’t awesome but it was pretty solid. Hey, you know what I was wondering this week?  I was wondering if Punk refuses to let anyone place alcohol in his house. I mean, if he had a girlfriend who drank, would he object if I she left a bottle of champagne or two in his fridge? Would that be a deal breaker? Would prospective girlfriends have to quit drinking to pass his love test? Just wondering. See? TOLD you my mind wanders.

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Not my real fridge. I just wish it was.

The match ended with the arrival of Umaga who, in the words of JR, began “lashing Punk like an animal.” SO. MANY. DIRTY. JOKES. MUST. RESIST…… at least until Extreme Rules has actually taken place. By the way, while he was away nursing his injury (whatever it was) Umaga was sent to to finishing school and has been given some elocution lessons. He speaks now. Who knew? It’s soooo My Fair Lady. I can totally see Professor Higgins playing up to Umaga’s Eliza Dolittle.

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I skipped R-Truth v Dolph Ziggler, so you’ll have to find out what happened there elsewhere. If you actually care about that match, you’re probably on the wrong website. On to Edge v Jeff Hardy. Again. But with a twist. The winner gets to choose the stipulation for the Extreme Rules PPV in three weeks. The match itself was fine and was won by Jeff.  Can you guess which stip he chose? You want a clue? Alright……

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Actually, that sounds AWESOME. I loves me some ladder.

Now, I’m off to consider whether I can bring myself to recap last night’s Raw without punching my fist through a wall in frustration, and to ponder whether I should write the public love letter to Randy Orton I’ve been mulling over for the past couple of weeks. Tough call. I’m going to have to sleep on it. Night-night!

Heroines Wanted: Apply Within

Back in the day, when my love affair with wrestling was at its climatic peak, there were three kinds of women in the WWE/F. These were the times when, in my eyes, it could do no wrong. Every twist and turn delighted me and I overlooked even the most ludicrous storylines. Ah, memories. As I said, there were three kinds of ladies back then.

1) Girls Who Look Like Boys (The Chynas)

You remember them, right? Overdeveloped, manly, muscle machines with chins that would put Edge to shame.  They usually got to work with the guys, because physically they were evenly matched. We’ll call them The Chynas.

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2) Pretty-Girl Wrestlers (The Trishes)

The women who seem able to maintain their femininity but still manage to pull off hot-shot, eye popping wrestling moves. Like Trish Stratus. We’ll come back to Trish later.

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3) The Fluff (The Keiblers)

I doubt this category really needs any explanation, but basically the girls who look drop-dead gorgeous but have extremely limited wrestling skills. Stacey Keibler:  Hot pins, bad at pinning.

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Fast forward to today’s bizarre state of WWE affairs and one category, The Chynas, has completely disappeared. Times have changed. Vince McMahon and his production staff’s job is to make money. They seek to pinpoint the most bankable trends in popular culture and apply them to their own product. We live in a celebrity obsessed world. For women, you’re not accepted if you’re not the perfect height, the perfect weight, the perfect amount of pretty, just the right amount of sexy. If you look like this……..

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…..you’re not marketable any more. Not to men or to women. That’s why these women have slipped away from the limelight. I haven’t lost any sleep over it. It always kind of bothered me that they were the only ones who got to hang with the boys anyway. Even back in the late 90s when overdeveloped female wrestlers were the norm, they still had to battle for recognition. I’m still not convinced that Chyna would have been involved in any main eventing had it not been for her dalliance with Triple H.

The Trishes, however, have soared. They fit the current bill. Gorgeous creatures that girls want to be and boys was to do. I’m talking Beth Phoenix, Gail Kim, Natalya, Melina, Mickie James, Michelle McCool, Maryse, Maria etc. (SIDENOTE: If I change my name to something starting with an M, can I join the Trishes?). Their athleticism is awesome and I will argue all the live long day that it is equal to that of the best performing men in the company. I would kill for just an ounce of it. In some cases their fitness is probably superior to some of the male wrestlers. Women are held up to different physical standards to men. It’s alright that some of the guys have a paunch. It’s never perceived as ok for women the lose their training grip.

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The Keiblers are still there.  Occasionally it bothers me, but not that much. It would be great if every woman employed by Vince McMahon had a fantastic, athletic, in-ring presence, but not everyone is made for taking bumps. They play their roles just like everyone else. The trend seems to be to get all women in to this middle ground of beauty and athleticism. Some just excel at being beautiful but can’t pull off top moves. And that’s fine. The fact that they’re out there trying and giving it their best to entertain makes me really happy. And who could possibly hate Kelly-Kelly anyway? She’s so damn cute. She’s like a cupcake with pink frosting and a cherry on top.

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Lacey, your boyfriend's not thinking about you right now.

I don’t even mind that guys drool over them. It would be wholly hypocritical of me to be insulted by that kind of behaviour, being that I have a segment in my Smackdown recaps which charts the weekly colours and contents of CM Punk’s trunks.

So what’s my problem? My problem is that when it comes to storylines, screen time and ring time, the women of the WWE are second class citizens. This is not a feminist rant. I just want to see the ladies getting a fair crack of the whip.  They are skipped over on several Pay Per Views, they have significantly less time in the ring, bearly enough mic time for us even to know what their voices sound like and non-existent storylines. It’s disappointing and an insult to the intelligence of those us interested in more than just the fact that Maryse wants a man who takes regular showers.

I sometimes wonder if the writers don’t give the women any storylines because they don’t believe anyone would care. Nonsense. People don’t care RIGHT NOW because there are NO storylines. Everyone knows that when wrestling/sports entertainment is good, the balance between dramatics and athletics is bang on. At the moment, there are NO female storylines and a tiny blot of athletics.  It doesn’t work.

A short while ago, Trish Stratus threw a cat among the pigeons when she expressed that the WWE Women’s Division is currently disappointing and that there are too many women on the roster all round. She also suggested they should concentrate on developing just a couple of women rather than spreading things too thinly over more talent. She’s got it partially right. I do NOT think, however, that there are too many women in the division. There are just too many women without a public persona or an identity. The matches have no context.  With no context, who cares who wins and loses? They’re just pretty, sexy girls grappling with each other. The pendulum is swinging all out of whack. There’s no balance between context and action, and no balance between the investment in to the men and the women. And by investment, I’m not just refering to financial investment. I mean, time and recognition too. The Women’s Division is not taken seriously at all. That’s a real shame, because the potential for business, sporting and entertainment expansion is huge, and completely untapped.

I’m going to use the Smackdown from 8th May as an example. Teddy Long, Rey Mysterio, Chris Jericho and Jeff Hardy spent 14 and a half minutes setting up a match between Jericho and Hardy to take place at the end of Smackdown. Almost 15 minutes of a two hour show, just talking. And it was great. It was entertaining and it began preparing the ground for the PPV matches between Mysterio and Jericho, and Hardy and Edge.  The entire Hardy/Jericho match on that particular Smackdown lasted almost 20 minutes, by the way.

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On the same show Gail Kim and Michelle McCool wrestled extremely well for five minutes. But that was it. No promo, no mic time, and with no purpose.  And that was a good week.

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Later in the same show, Cryme Tyme emceed an arm wrestle between Layla and Eve Torres. Why? It had no meaning. And apparently neither woman seemed allowed to speak. Cryme Tyme spoke on their behalf. It was infuriating and utterly pointless, and it was given just as much time as the McCool/Kim match.

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Wrestlemania. The grandest stage of the them all. The highlight of the wrestling calendar. Millions of people watching around the world. And who won the Miss Wrestlemania contest? A man in a skirt and a wig with a chin strap. I get the joke. Really. I do. But what a waste. Santino Marella is a great comedian. He’s a natural. I’ve laughed with him at certain points through this whole Santina story. But seeing Beth Phoenix chasing him/her around for the past six weeks is a major let-down and a shameful waste of her talent. She is one of the most accomplished female athletes in the company and yet her skills are bearly tapped in to.

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Maybe the WWE believes that female fans wouldn’t support female superstars if they upped their profile and marketed the directly to women. There is this odd myth that all women hate each other and that ladies will only cheer for male wrestlers. That’s incorrect. Those women do exist, but I’d be unpleasantly surprised if they made up the majority. If the female fanbase really is 40% of the entire WWE Universe, give us the same role models and heels the male fans have. Build feuds. Create identities and heroines. Give us characters to look forward to seeing and discussing and supporting. There are some amazing women in the WWE. It would make my day to see little girls wearing Mickie James t-shirts. Those shirts don’t exist.  Little girls wear Jeff Hardy shirts because WWE promotes him to that market. Promote the women to women and young girls and I guarantee it will get a favourable response.  Allow young girls to see the female wrestlers succeeding in the same way and at the same level their male counterparts do and it will give them a work ethic to aspire to.

I can’t speak for any of the female talent. I don’t know them. I haven’t met them. Even if I did I highly doubt they would be so unprofessional as to air any personal grievances in front of fans. But it’s got to be frustrating for them, hasn’t it? As a woman, the lack or interest the WWE shows in its Women’s Division sometimes makes me feel like it doesn’t care about me either.  So, apart from the obvious, why should I keep coming back?

Smackdown(lite): bromancing on a friday night

After all the chit-chat on last week’s Smackdown, this week we went straight in to a match.  It was John Morrison & CM Punk vs Charlie Haas and Shelton Benjamin.  Apparently, John personally selected Punk to be his partner. I could recap the match in full, because it was pretty excellent, but a far more interesting development has occurred. No, it has nothing to do with CROTCH WATCH (he wore the black with the fuchsia stars again, by the way). It is the dawning of a new Bromance. Man-hugs and bromantic looks to the max. Look, look, look!

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Oh, I wish CM Punk would wrap his hand around MY hair and whisper sweet nothings in to MY ear. (Middle row, far right)

As I said, it was a great match, which was put to bed my Morrison’s acrobatics on to Haas. Oh and one of my favourite moment was JR calling the instant replay like it was a display of figure skating. He might as well had said  “Watch this… tuck axel, triple salco, double lutz. Beautiful swan-like arms. Innovative. Risk-taking.” Ok, that move is actually called the Starship Pain. But my description sounds prettier.

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Moving on, Chris Jericho, in a repeat of his whining from the week before….and the week before…. umm, anyone else getting a bit bored with this? I love Chris from the depths of my heart and he’s great at what he’s doing, but I’m not digging this persona any more. Anyway, he’s taking Rey Mysterio on at Judgement Day tonight, so they had to do a spot of promotion for their Intercontinental Championship match. There I was, waiting for Rey to pop out from behind the curtain, but hold the phone, he’s sent Edge out in his place.

They both bitched about whose show it was and argued over the apparent timetabling clash. Edge called out Jeff, Chris re-called out Rey, but what we actually got was  Teddy Long to shut their yaps. Apparently the show belongs to US, the WWE Universe.  Yey! But I don’t remember being offered stock options. Vince, call me please.

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Filed under things I pretend to understand but really don't.

Anyway,  what REALLY killed the conversation was Teddy’s announcement that Jericho and Edge had to face each other that night.  Next time an opening for a General Manager opens up, I might submit my CV. Seems like a pretty easy job, coming out at opportune moments and telling hot boys to STFU. Piece o’cake.

Next up, Jeff ‘The Fonz’ Hardy against Ricky ‘Tony Robbins’ Ortiz. Yeah, ok. I’ll go along with it.

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Grisham and Ross made me laugh this week.  When Todd suggested that “Ricky Ortiz  has a laid back, West Coast, persona.” JR bit back with ” I don’t see anything ‘laid back’ about this match. I don’t see him sipping on any lattes!” Because everyone knows that’s what people in California do all day, right? Just sit around outside cafes with their miniature poodles, wearing free designer shades, sipping on non-fat-dry-soy-decaf-lattes…right? Well that’s what The Hills would have us believe anyway. It’s real as long as I believe it’s real DAMMIT!

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Ok, back to the action and out of my Hills dreamworld….. Ortiz did surprisingly well against Jeff but you KNOW Jeff’s not gonna lose to some new pipsqueak. Swanton Bomb for the win. Time for a bit of JD promotion. Josh Matthews jumped under the ropes to ask Jeff a few questions about his plans for Sunday night. I see he hasn’t taken my advice to try some long-lasting foundation. Ok, if you don’t like the Revlon, try Estee Lauder Double-Wear Light Foundation. About three times the price of the Revlon but MUCH stronger and less cakey. And it’s got an SPF too.

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The Jeff Hardy Love-In continued. A cry of “YOU’RE THE GREATEST” came from the crowd, Jeff paused, pointed to the adoring dude in the crowd and said “YOU’RE the greatest!” I swear to GOD, Jeff could kick a puppy and people would STILL cheer for him at the moment. I’m such a sucka for a nice guy.  Fudge the bad boys, you’re always in safe hands with a polite and appreciative young man. He went on to state in no uncertain terms that he plans on being the owner of some waist metal by the end of Sunday. *SWOOOON*

Speaking of swooning, I think I may be developing a girl-crush on Michelle McCool. I kind of want to be her. Actually I’d just settle for her stomach and hair, but the rest would be nice too, if anyone with cosmetic surgery qualifications is reading.

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So Michelle and Alicia Fox took on Gail Kim and Melina. Oh. Right. Melina. She was drafted over how many weeks ago? Bout time they put her to work. Another really good women’s match on Smackdown. Things are definitely looking up. Melina ended it all by jumping on Michelle’s back, flipping herself between her legs and holding her down for the 1, 2, 3. Fantastic.  Take note Raw, Smackdown is way ahead of you.

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I’m not normally in the habit of throwing my support behind redneck Asians (JR’s label, not mine), but if Jimmy Wang Yang wants to linedance all over Dolph Ziggler’s head, hey, I’ll give him a round of applause.  RUBBISH MATCH. Really. Just to rub salt in to an open wound of a match, Ziggler won. And just when I thought it couldn’t get any worse, The Great Khali came out and pulled Ziggler out of the ring. Bleurgh all round. NEEEEEXT.

I think I would have preferred staying with Ziggler and Khali than witness what happened next.

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I have no words. At least, no words I can write without WordPress suspending my account. Let’s try this again and hope for a better result…… NEEEEEEXT! R-Truth and Mike Knox. Again? Well, alright then.  It’s significantly better than the last two segments anyway.  R-Truth made his usual way through the crowd and Knox met him in the ring. Not a terrible match but not great either. At least there was a reversal in the result this week. R-Truth took it with a strange corkscrew move to the head  (but not as nice as John Morrison’s Triple Salco).

Rey Mysterio did a little Spanish promo for his match against Jericho and, because Lawler and Cole got to do it on Raw, JR and Todd Grisham got in the ring to run through all their Judgement Day matches. Ready for some main eventing? Nah, me neither. Can’t say I was really looking forward to the Edge/Jericho match.  It just seemed like an excuse to put them both to work without doing the PPV matches a few days too early. It trundled along fairly smoothly. Nothing out of the ordinary or unexpected. But then bedlam broke out and the whole place erupted. Here’s how it went down…….

Edge was about to make Jericho eat some steel chair when Jeff Hardy came to spoil his party.

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Jeff was about throw himself on to Edge from the top rope, but when Jericho interfered he switched angles and humped on to HIM instead.

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After a brief pause CM PUNK came running out with a referee at his side, to try and cash in his Money in the Bank contract for the THIRD week running. AAARGH! I need to catch my breath….. hold on…….mmm ahhhhh mmmm ahhhh mmm ahhhh. Ok I can breathe now.

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Just as Punk got in the ring Umaga appeared and tried to foil his third cash-in, but Punk whacked him over the noggin with the briefcase and sent him flying. Just to make sure he really HAD knocked Umaga out, CM Punk leaped from the ropes and landed on the chunky one. He vented his frustration by shouting loudly.sdjdpr4

Back in the ring, Jeff and just thrown himself at Edge, has knocked him towards the announce table and has pushed him in to the crowd.

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In another part of the crowd, Umaga has found his feet and is pummelling Punk in to a pulp. A small girl touches Umaga and seems shocked that his skin in sweaty.

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Hold up, where’s Jericho? Oh there he is, slinking up the ramp. Rey Mysterio doesn’t let him get off so lightly and attacks him from behind.

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All three matches continue as Smackdown goes off the air, and I make an attempt at recovering from my first decent Wrestlegasm in WEEKS. Bring on the Judgement.

FAVOURITE CROWD MEMBER OF THE SHOW

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I know I chose a child in last week’s Smackdown recap, but they generally have the most honest reactions. This one says “Daddy, who the hell is this man and why are his eyeballs so large?” I also like that he’s wearing a John Cena shirt.

Smackdown(lite): Everybody hates chris

Back to the old routine and this week’s Smackdown kicked off with Theodore Long in the ring, celebrating Rey Mysterio’s triumphant return to the Smackdown flock. You know what I love? Genuine smiles. Not faux wrestling smiles, but real ‘I’m so happy to be here’ ones. Jeff Hardy did one at the end of last week’s  Smackdown and Rey did one at the beginning of this week’s show. It makes my heart smile.

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But the love-in was rudely interrupted by (according to Grisham) a buzz-kill. Depends on the kind of buzz you’re into, know what I’m sayin’? Anyway,  jealous Jericho made his way to the ring to complain about the fact that Mysterio was now the new SD poster boy again and HE wasn’t.  Chris and Teddy exchanged PLAYAs and PLAYERs, Chris abused the crowd and Rey told him to SHUT UP. Uh-ohhhh! Then he said something in Spanish which I didn’t quite catch, but he did talky-talky-hands so I figure he was telling him to shut his trap in Español. Rey couldn’t handle any more waffle, so he turned and began exiting the ring. Jericho yapped at him but as he left Rey passed the baton on to Jeff Hardy. Oh dear, it’s a relay. Everybody really does hate Chriseverybody-hates-chris copy

By the way, how cool did Jeff look, swaggering down to the ring in civilian clothes, pushing his thumbs through his belt loops and tipping nods of coolness to the crowd? It was like Fonzy had just arrived. And that Southern accent. *SWOON* It makes me miss Tennessee sooo much. (Yeah, I know he’s from N.C, but it’s the closest thing I’ve got). Jeff pretty much told Jericho it was time to put-up or shut-up and told him he wanted to fight him that night. If Jericho won, the title match at Judgement Day with Edge & Jeff would become a three-way scrap for the belt. Jeff told Chris he would expose him for the loser he really was, Chris swung a punch and missed, Jeff slapped him and took off his coat *wolf-whistle*, Jericho left the ring and Teddy confirmed the match. Sweet!

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Ok, time to move on. After a brief interlude, R-Truth began making his way to the ring via the crowd, encouraging people with no rhythm to get hyped up and do a bouncy hip-hop dance. I almost made the lady in this picture my ‘FAVOURITE CROWD MEMBER OF THE SHOW’ (a segment that I totally invented, Adam.) But I found a much better one towards the end of the show.

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R-Truth took on Mike Knox. The bearded one took him to the cleaners. Time for the girls to have a go.  I don’t know if this happens to guys when they watch wrestling (do tell, boys, do tell) but when I see this kind of training effort, I feel kind of ashamed of myself .  As I watched this, I was scarfing down a bacon and fried egg baguette. Thanks for ruining it Michelle McCool. Do you REALLY have to display your amazing stomach like that and make the rest of us feel inferior? Ah who am I kidding? If I looked like that I would just walk around in my underwear with a big cardboard arrow pointing at my abs. Besides, I am of the belief that your body is down to you, so I think I’ll step up the crunches this week.

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It’s been a good week for the ladies. First Mickie and Maryse were given a gimmick-free match on Raw, then Michelle and Gail Kim were given a nice little slot of time on SD. Result! Although, I’m not entirely sure why Michelle took a break during the match to do some push-ups. Show-off! And Alicia could do with ditching the screeching too. But otherwise, it was pretty fantastic.  Even better than Raw. Maybe I don’t need to write my post of complaint about the women after all. (But I will anyway). Michelle McCool set the Faith-Breaker in motion and it was curtains for Gail Kim.

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In the interview area, Jeff Hardy stepped up for a chat with old pal, Josh Matthews, about how he planned on eliminating the distraction that is Chris Jericho. A couple of rooms away and, oh no, my worst fears from last week have been realised. The hideous zebra-print fabric IS part of Maria’s new clothing line. NOOOOOOO!

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It’s ok. I still love you, Maria.  Meanwhile, Edge comes in and Teddy gives him a match that night against CM Punk. Yum! Title match? Non-Title Match? That’s for Punk to decide. Bring it on. Back in the ring, John Morrison is taking on Charlie Haas, who is accompanied by Shelton Benjamin. I feel like I’m supposed to care a lot more than I do about John Morrison. But I kinda don’t. Maybe in a year or so when he’s cut his teeth in the big-leagues. And cuts his hair. Then I might consider him mildly sexy. Shamen? Doubtful. Oh, just in case you DO care, Morrison pinned Haas and spent a couple of minutes daring Shelton Benjamin to take his shirt off.

Now on to something I DO care about – CM Hunk vs Edge (take II).  CROTCH WATCH: Lavender. You know what that means. ………………… whoa, drifted off in to a fantasy there for a moment. Ok, I’m here. They pretty much repeated the same match they had last week, meaning that it was great but I felt like I’d seen it before. Because I had. But rather than have Edge lose and risk the briefcase being cashed in, he walked away from the match, keeping his precious title intact. Punk had just about persuaded Edge to return to the ring when this happened………….

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Only the lavender trunks and some well timed clenching made the whole thing slightly more palatable than the first time around.

This was followed by Cryme Tyme and their two female puppets, Eve Torres (who I like a tiny bit) and Layla (who I should like, but don’t).  I’m  not recapping this tripe. I’m saving it for my serious post. And I can’t be bothered to recap Ziggler and Khali either. I’m nauseated by Ziggler and terrified of Khali. So I’m skipping. Lame, I know, but I’m sick enough this week…..I don’t need any more nausea.

On to the main event, which was fantastic on so many levels. We had Edge on commentary at the announce table, Jericho and Jeff Hardy in the ring and half way through the match, Rey Mysterio joined in and scooted around the ring to keep the crowd firing on all cylinders. Edge donned his headset, kids’ favourite – Jeff Hardy – bounced in and Jericho followed.  The match was rolling along nicely and Jeff was looking dominant. Jericho seemed to be edging towards the ramp when Mysterio came out to make sure he didn’t leg it, allowing Jeff to capitalise.

But by far the best thing about the whole match was Edge’s  commentary and, in particular, his snippy banter with JR. They sounded like a couple on the brink of divorce, failing at being civil in a public place. Poor Todd Grisham had to be piggy in the middle of their lovers’ tiff. It was brilliant. Favourite line from Edge? “Yes, this’ll be the only time you’ll hear me cheering and have the pom-poms on for Jeff Hardy.” I know it’s too obvious, but my photoshop senses were tingling and I couldn’t let it slide without doing this:

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That’s the scariest effing cheerleader I’ve ever seen. I think I just gave MYSELF nightmares with my OWN photoshopping. *shudder* Anyway, they began scrapping outside of the ring and Jericho threw Jeff straight in to Edge’s face, knocking him off his pedestal….literally.

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They made their way back in to the ring, Jeff almost pinning Jericho by grabbing at his crotch and dragging him down while Edge distracted him with a hissy fit at the side of the ring. He kicked out in just enough time and reversed the move, sneakily using the ropes for leverage. Edge had already stormed off and Rey Mysterio did his Justice of the Peace thing, alerting the referee to Jericho’s cheating. Jericho told Rey to keep his cherry out and, while distracted, Jeff finished him off.

Jeff and Edge did a stare-down thing, then just as Jericho regained his composure, Rey Mysterio leapt on to him from the ropes. You know, just for a laugh. Jericho did a strange kick-out AFTER he’d been pounced upon, Rey did more crab-claw-hands and Chris was left hacking his lungs up on the mat.

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FAVOURITE CROWD MEMBER OF THE SHOW

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This little girl – who looked bedazzled by her whole WWE experience. Possibly even her first WWE experience. And her little friends were cute too. Cheering along and waving their action figures in the air. Bless their little cotton socks. Ah, youthful innocence. I remember it well. Remember watching wrestling and having that starry-eyed look on your face? Oh, wait, I still do. That’s why I’m still here. Duh!