nxt season finale: in which we bemoan the lack of acrostics in today’s society

“When a love comes to an end, weaklings cry, efficient ones instantly find another love, and the wise already have one in reserve.”
Oscar Wilde

Realistically I’ve never been one to cry much, and I’m hardly the most efficient person in the world (look at my history of late and missed posts on this very site for evidence of that) – however… getting on in years does infer a certain wisdom. Now that Series One of NXT has come to a close, let’s hope I have “one in reserve” to replace it.

Excitingly, this week’s episode of NXT was the Season Finale (or, to translate to the Queen’s English, Series Final.) After the turmoils of juggling, drinking fizzy pop and selling over-priced pamphlets, we were left with only 3 remaining Rookies at the end of last weeks show as you may remember:

These are Striker's special "NXT" shoes...

As seen in Episode 12

...and Episode 14.

Suspiciously, this final episode was filmed in Dallas, so there was always a possibility that the entire run of NXT had been a dream, and that the Pros would all emerge from the shower as if nothing had happened.

If you're too young to get this reference, know that I hate you...

To begin, this week’s episode opened with a nice recap of the series so far, showing all the highlights and eliminations to date. Following this, Boss Lady Ray’s dapper and delectable Dean Striker introduced the five eliminated rookies (all of whom looked as happy as the Magical Man from Happy-Land. You know the one, he lives in a gumdrop house on Lollipop Lane) followed by the Pros…

GEEK FACT: H20 are a straight edge band, Punk was in one of their videos

Let battle commence! We started the actual show with a triple-threat match, to be followed by the first of two Pros’ Polls and the first elimination of the night. By the way, they did announce the Pros and Rookies for Series 2 of NXT throughout tonight’s episode, but I’ll cover all those next week once we’ve seen them in action. You’ll just have to be patient, which I am well aware comes easier for some than others…

Enjoyable though the match was, it was still only as good as a match containing David Otunga could be, but Barrett and Gabriel both put on a good show. Otunga was pinned first by Barrett after Gabriel had hit his 450 on him. Gabriel then took the advantage over Barrett for a while, including this pinning attempt which had Michael Cole describing it as “Gabriel slithers down the back of Barrett…”

I'm not stooping that low, if you need a joke for here ask Joey...

Gabriel started to get the upper hand, and attempted another 450 on Barrett (any wonder Josh Mathews called him a one trick pony earlier in the show?) Barrett countered with his knees and got the pin, winning the match; much to the pleasure of Jericho.

Wade, there's a little crippled boy sitting in a hospital who wants you to win this series. I know because.. I crippled him myself to inspire you.

After the match, the Pros all huddled together in that terribly convincing manner that they have, to discuss the notes they have meticulously taken throughout the previous match. Then, after tabulating the results of that Poll, and cross-referencing with a database of results from the previous weeks, taking into account both house shows and TV, then and only then were they ready to pass those results onto to Matt Striker. Either that or it’s all being made up on a week by week basis. You decide.

Striker then decided that asking the eliminated Rookies who they wanted to win was a good idea, with mixed results…




Does Striker look convinced?

Meanwhile, alarm bells were starting to ring in the bunker. Maybe both Ray and myself have watched too much wrestling in the past, and maybe my natural cynicism is starting to rub off on her (as the actress said to the bishop) but this business seems to be such a fan of swerves. Pushing Barrett as the favourite… the Rookies prepared to give an answer judging him the best… the Pros’ Poll judging him Number One… we were worried. Of the three finalists (national bias aside) we wanted Barrett to win, but I was starting to think that wasn’t going to happen…

Phew!

Inside the ring, Striker gathered Otunga and Gabriel close to his “beautiful baby blue eyes” to view the final results of the Poll. Now that we knew Barrett was safe, the Bunker was pulling for Gabriel to get through. Silly Cheryl Cole dress aside, the guy isn’t a bad wrestler at all and could do really well, at least among the younger female contingent of the WWE Universe.

Bugger!

So, Gabriel is gone; and we’re left with Barrett and Otunga as our final two competitors. Oh well, I still think he’ll do well once he rids himself of the overbearingly awful baggage that is Matt Hardy, and at least he’ll have some time off to pop back to South Africa and watch the World Cup or something. Sorry Justin, diplomatic immunity isn’t going to save you this time, just ask Murtaugh…


Luckily this is a recap, so you can be spared the ridiculously awful spectacle of Matt Hardy’s “heartfelt and unrehearsed speech” at the top of the ramp. A speech that he started before the microphone was switched on, restarted word for word once it was, then managed to make so unintelligible and uninteresting that the sound guy decided to just play the NXT theme over the end of it (and that’s with me still retaining the high ground and not going anywhere near the line “one thing I see when I look inside you”)

Oh Justin... nobody enjoys a Matt Hardy promo that much!

Anyway, after the disgustingly dire and disastrous debacle that was Matt Hardy’s promo, we moved onto promos from the two Rookies – people who should be less experienced than him and not quite as capable on the microphone. Note the important word in that sentence: “should”. Otunga, for all his in-ring inability, is very charismatic and more than able to cut a decent promo. Barrett on the other hand, as well as wrestling, had a spell on commentary alongside Dusty Rhodes at FCW: a position you’re not going to get unless you’re comfortable on the mic.

I'm ignoring the fact that Otunga has more sequins than a bar maid at Funny Girls, Boss Lady Ray can cover that...

“Creative and Entertaining” were the two criteria requested by Striker: unfortunately Otunga’s idea of that is to call Wade ugly (placing focus on his broken nose: imagine a bare knuckle boxer with a broken nose!) whilst bragging about his own good looks.


Entertainingly, Otunga mentioned his “it-factor” during his promo, leading to a (shoot?) from Barrett that is worth watching in it’s entirety. It’s OK… I’ll wait for you and meet you afterwards.

Great Khali burns… WWE management unable to hang on to any intangible quality… adding two letters to the front of It Factor… all good stuff and without a doubt the more successful promo. Unfortunately this did nothing to silence our earlier alarm bells, as Barrett coming out on top here is surely only helping to cement his loss later on.

Or will it? Time for another Pros’ Poll to find out the final winner. Time to gather round and compare those notes again…

The left hand side of this picture reeks of awesomeness

The next section was ostensibly the announcement of the winner of Series One of NXT, but it was interrupted first by The Miz announcing that he would once again be a Pro next series, followed by Regal seemingly losing all control and just tearing into each Pro and essentially announcing Barrett as the winner…

Incredible stuff I’m sure you’ll agree. Calling Christian “Benjamin Button”; insulting Jennifer Hudson; calling Hardy “Eugene”; pleading with R-Truth to fight him; complimenting Jericho on his two moves; Punk realising that he’s had enough of NXT and just walking out…

Tremendous though this was, and terrifying inasmuch as it supported our theory that Otunga was going to win, Striker decided to assert his authority (something he does on a regular basis around here) and just declare the winner while all this was going on. Obviously we’re all resigned to the fact that it will be Otunga now. Regal has declared Barrett the winner. The Pros’ Polls have announced him as Number One. The Rookies have voted for him. Yet the WWE loves to wrongfoot so obviously they will choose the guy who’s engaged to Jennifer Hudson…

Oh Emm Gee

X <- that’s a big kiss from Boss Lady Ray and myself to the WWE for actually managing to surprise us. We were both convinced Google-Boy was going to win, so to see Barrett as #1 was very satisfying indeed. But that’s the end of Series One. In an attempt to please Oscar Wilde however, WWE are attempting to prove their wisdom by starting Season 2 straight away.  As I said earlier however I won’t mention the Pros and Rookies until next week. Well, apart from this one to close with:

...as if millions of ROH fans suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly ignored...

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2 thoughts on “nxt season finale: in which we bemoan the lack of acrostics in today’s society

  1. Here’s what I didn’t get: When Regal preemptively congratulated Barret, people got on him like “HOW DO YOU KNOW??” Umm…it was the Pros poll. He saw the results when he voted…a doy.

  2. You’re right, I did cry out in terror but considering the images I’ve seen over the past 24 hours of WWE programming…I’m almost hopeful.

    Although I have absolutely what the pay-off of this relationship is. At least Danielson could kick the crap out of Miz. What the heck is Low-Ki supposed to do? Steal their clothes and cost them the Women’s title(s)?

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