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.
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.
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…….
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.
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.
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.
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?
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.
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.
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?
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. 😀 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.
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…….
…..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.
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.
FAVOURITE CROWD MEMBER OF THE NIGHT
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!