RAW: Damage Limitation

Alright. Let’s stop dancing around the inevitable. Punk is gone. He hasn’t been officially future endeavoured and there is a part of me holding on to the fact that this might be the most ballsy, elaborate work in history. But as he’s been pulled from pre-paid AXXESS meet & greets and assessing the bizarre atmosphere on RAW this week, we can assume that at the very least he’s having an extended holiday.

There was a definite air of damage limitation on this week’s RAW. Fan-made signs enquiring as to Punk’s whereabouts were confiscated by security. In the same way that Rey Mysterio was booed at the Royal Rumble simply for not being Daniel Bryan, Randy Orton’s words made no impact on the crowd, who were otherwise engaged in repeatedly chanting for CM Punk. Being a bit of a tough-nut, their disinterest in his moaning about his lack of…(umm, what was it again?) made no impression on him either.

Needing to pacify an already volatile crowd Steph and HHH appeared on the ramp to instruct Randy to stop whining. To curry favour with the audience even further, they warned him that they had the power to strip him of his ‘face of the company’ moniker. If he didn’t cool his boots they might be forced to make someone else their favourite. Daniel Bryan, maybe. HHH even joined the Yes Movement. Turncoat!

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Daniel Bryan, who in the space of a week has gone from their whipping boy to potential poster boy. You can’t help but feel that even what would have been Bryan’s eventual triumph over ‘the man’ has been ditched in favour of keeping people from turning off.

The Shield won a three-man tag against Big E. Langston, Kofi and Rey Mysterio, but the crucial part of the story came when Dean Ambrose (unf) and Roman Reigns squabbled over who should have taken the pin. Poor Seth Rollins. As if his comedic tumbling the previous week hadn’t been upsetting enough. Now mummy and daddy are fighting again. I wonder which of them plays mum and which takes on the role of dad. Let’s think about that for a moment. Anyway, the bickering soon ended and their broken pieces were glued back together when the Wyatts appeared on screen hoping to capitalise on their moment of collective weakness. They didn’t.

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It also seems there’s dissent at Camp Real Americans. After losing a place in the Elimination Chamber to Christian on SmackDown, Jack Swagger was given a rematch, only to lose a second time. You can always tell when Swagger’s in a panic. His bottom lip bursts open, like that kid in school who always got stress-related nosebleeds on class trips.  Zeb Colter made his disgruntlement known in no uncertain terms and even Antonio Cesaro dropped and shook his head in shame. Time to disband these guys and start hyping Cesaro, lest he go the same way as Hero. At least, let’s not allow that to happen before I can successfully attend any British shows he might be booked on. Selfish? Me? Absolutely. It already sticks in my craw that I don’t get to clap eyes on Chris Hero’s colour-of-a-cornfield mane when he’s in the UK at the end of this month.

In further attempts to placate the ready-to-riot crowd, the New Age Outlaws were forced to put the tag titles on the line against Goldust and Cody Rhodes. Oh and they were forced to do it *MOVIE TRAILER VOICE* inside a steel caaaaage. New Age Outlaws retained in a match that went on for far too long, never really got going and made little-to-no use of the cage. Hey, Hunter? Where’s Punk?

Thankfully this was followed by Batista’s arrival. Now, hold on. I know this doesn’t sound all that exciting. But the small detail I deliberately omitted in the name of building tension is that our Dave’s back in the double denim. Yes!

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And not just top and bottom denim, but a matching burnout tee. Cor! But beyond my predictable giddiness at Dave-denim, the real star of this segment was Alberto Del Rio. Dressed in less impressive single denim, the promo he ripped on Dave was so convincingly impassioned you might believe there was some truth behind it. I mean, why would the guy who’s been consistently great but never truly trusted to carry the company along with the big boys feel cheesed off that Dave’s waltzed back in to steal a Wrestlemania headline slot? It was the first time in many months I’ve really sat up and taken notice of Del Rio. Their scrap was fierce and Del Rio was so pumped he returned to the ring to retrieve his rather fetching black blazer, before catching glimpse of Dave’s face and thinking better of it.

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Speaking of those flying uncomfortably under the radar, Dolph Ziggler was teamed up with R-Truth and Xavier Woods to go up against the Wyatts. The match had all the bumps and jumps you’d expect, with Bray Wyatt pinning Dolph for the win. To match their video interruption earlier in the evening, The Shield made their own video based gift, with Dean Ambrose (unf) mocking the Wyatts’ scare tactics and his fellow warriors warning of retribution. This was met with the usual psychotic laughter in the ring. Standard but still pleasing fare.

This took us to a long main event between Randy Orton and Daniel Bryan, the winner of which would become the McMahon-Helmsley’s favourite boy. It was a long and involved match where both gave a lot, but it was flat. It was missing something. Despite some interference from Kane, Bryan still won the match, but it didn’t have the shine it should have. It’s not enough just to give us what we want. We need the backstory to make it mean something. That’s where promoters get wrestling fans all wrong. It’s about the journey. I wonder if that’s the line they’d be following if Punk was still around. And the fact that Orton and Kane continued to pummel Bryan after the bell means it’ll all probably flip-flop back the other way quicker than a Westminster sex scandal come next week. It just didn’t make sense. Unless Kane interfered to make sure Bryan didn’t win, what was the point?

Can you say ‘state of flux’?

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N.B. This week, in an attempt to skip what I thought were just the ads, I watched RAW via the Sky Sports On Demand service. Unfortunately, I only realised after writing this that they’d cut out several mid-card matches, linking segments etc. I’ll have seen all the missing pieces before next week, but just a warning to those in the UK. It gives a skewed view of the show and I’m going to be complaining to Sky about it.   

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Randy Orton, Kelly Kelly and Why It Matters

Over the past couple of days the Internet has been awash with reaction to the derogatory comments Randy Orton made about Kelly Kelly’s personal life during an interview with a Phoenix radio station. In the interest of giving an informed opinion I’ve listened to the interview in full. The comments themselves relate to Kelly’s sex life, suggesting that she has slept with several of the WWE roster, to which the sex was regularly referred to as ‘method acting’ by Orton and the astonishingly obnoxious hosts. The alleged notches in Kelly’s bedpost became a running joke throughout the interview, with the hosts asking Randy if Kelly had “banged” almost every Superstar who came up in conversation, before collapsing in laughter.

There are really two main issues here – the unprofessional nature of Orton’s conduct and the double standards women are held up to with regard to sexuality, particularly in the WWE. Randy Orton certainly has form when it comes to unprofessional behaviour, but in the past it was when he was either on the brink of making it truly big or such a believable villain that it didn’t quite have the same impact that this incident has had. Previously his character suggested it was almost expected that he would be controversial in interviews. Orton is now the face of SmackDown; the brand’s number one good guy. When he’s sent out on these assignments he’s there to promote the company, the shows, the merchandise in a wholly positive light and as the newly loved World Heavyweight Champion. I think Randy Orton’s just found out that it’s not such an easy job being the good guy. He would do well to take some tips from John Cena, who continually oozes professionalism in interviews. Even more impressive is the Miz, who manages to be the man everyone loves to hate, yet comes across as utterly charming in every interview he gives.

Regardless of what you think of your colleagues and the standards by which you quietly judge their life choices, you simply cannot discuss their private lives in public. It’s not what I expect of someone representing a global business. It’s not what I expect of anyone. I once worked in an organisation where a colleague was severely reprimanded for quite modestly speaking ill of the boss, in the pub, after working hours. Someone reported the comments back to the boss and the colleague was punished. In the real world, people get fired for less than Randy Orton has said and I sincerely hope there have been some repercussions here. I cringe to think that young boys who idolise Randy Orton have listened to that interview and think it’s perfectly acceptable to discuss women in this way. Whether he wants to be or not, Orton’s a role mode and should conduct himself as such.

Aside from the fact that Randy Orton makes both himself and the WWE look painfully unprofessional during this interview, the matter he commented on could not be any less his concern. He had no right to report on Kelly’s private life so publicly and especially using such crass language. Our sexuality is ours to own. Whether we choose to have no sexual partners at all or a different one every night, we all make that choice for ourselves and don’t expect to be judged for it. The problem with the way female sexuality is viewed is that, the moment a woman does something even remotely sexual, it comes to define who she is in a way that just doesn’t apply men. CM Punk, for example, is alleged to be quite the lothario. It is mentioned in passing among wrestling fans but it never impacts how he is viewed as a wrestler or a human being. Fans and colleagues alike are currently fawning all over Punk following his glowing performance in what might possibly be the defining storyline of his career. Women (including the WWE Divas) aren’t afforded that same respect. Men are actually congratulated for sexual conquests, while women are considered ‘sluts’. Sexy isn’t a dirty word regardless of gender.

For example, I watched Beyoncé close the Glastonbury festival on television on Sunday night. I’m biased in that I’m a huge fan of hers, but I was incredibly moved by how she managed to woo 175,000 people with the most outstanding performance I’ve ever seen her pull off. The overwhelming response seemed to be that Beyoncé had taken the nation’s breath away. The following day on Twitter a female journalist I (still) adore and respect, Julia Raeside, boiled her performance down to this:

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Re Beyonce: she is professional, clearly works hard, all of the things you say. But she shakes her bottom for money.
27/06/2011 12:59

I was genuinely upset by Julia’s comment. As long it’s not all you think you have to offer, there is absolutely nothing wrong with displaying your sexuality. There is nothing wrong with going on stage in a leotard, heels and a spangly jacket. I see no problem with shaking your arse to music just because it feels good. It was as if Julia had bypassed Beyoncé’s operatically trained voice, her impeccable dance skills, her acting credits, her writing skills and her obvious humility because she had chosen to be sexy during some of the performance. If Usher had joined her on stage shirtless and grinding his crotch at the audience, nobody would have blinked an eye. Run the World (Girls) may not be entirely lyrically accurate, but if I had a daughter I’d want her to listen to it and feel she could run the world if she wanted to. I do think Beyoncé is a positive role model for young women. Her sexuality is just one part of her personality, which she sometimes plays up as part of her performance. This should be the case for the WWE Divas too.

The WWE itself isn’t totally blameless here. Smart, Sexy, Powerful is a good tagline to attach to the women on the roster, but I’m concerned that only one of those words is currently being fulfilled. If the business is trying to gear itself towards a very young audience, it should be trying much harder to define its female talent by more than just their sexuality. They get plenty of opportunities to appear sexy, but very few to display their intelligence and power in the form of clever storylines, long matches and equal billing. I don’t have a problem with the plethora of female photo shoots WWE pumps out so frequently. What I do have a problem with is that the male roster members don’t seem to be required to take part in them nearly as often as the women do. The net result of this is that the Divas’ sexuality appears that much more overt than that of the male Superstars and it becomes what they’re famous for.

I wasn’t exactly banging my drum for feminism when such a huge deal was made of Kelly Kelly’s appearance in this year’s Maxim Hot 100 list. I’m not sure it really achieves anything to ask adolescent boys looking for wank fodder to rate women according to their looks. I think it’s a ludicrous concept as outdated as beauty pageants. But lads’ mags are on the slide on the newsstand anyway, and I’d be surprised if any were still in circulation in ten years time.  For now, they exist and I know Kelly was pleased to be have been included, but it’s really worth no more than some free publicity for the company. Regardless, suggesting that Kelly’s appearance in the list somehow sets her up for derogatory comments is pretty pathetic, yet it’s an argument I heard in Orton’s defence.

Over the past 24 hours I’ve read some outrageous justifications and excuses for Randy Orton’s comments. It doesn’t matter which magazines Kelly’s modelled for. It doesn’t matter what she did for a living in the past. It doesn’t matter which characters she’s played in previous storylines. Pondering whether Randy’s punishment is adequate based on who the woman he humiliated is gets away from the fact that he made the comments in the first place. If you’re thinking he might have chosen his words more carefully if Kelly’s boyfriend was someone more powerful in the company, you’ve definitely missed the point. It doesn’t matter if you like her, find her attractive or enjoy her wrestling, there should be zero tolerance of this kind of behaviour and no room for compromise.

Randy’s an extremely well paid and (supposedly) media savvy professional. It’s not sufficient to say that he was just hanging out with ‘the guys’ and got caught up in a rowdy moment. He wasn’t in a bar bullshitting with his mates, he was on a radio show available worldwide. That should have been his first thought before answering every single question.  This is why his Twitter apology (in which he asked people to drop the subject for her sake) seems a little wet. Irritating and archaic as they were, it’s not as if the hosts held a gun to his head or coerced him into discussing Kelly’s private life. The words spilt out quite freely. Who on earth was Orton trying to impress? Randy Orton repeatedly mentioned his wife and daughter during the interview. A good rule of thumb should be ‘if someone were about to embarrass my daughter/wife/girlfriend/sister/mother with these words, how would I feel about it?’ If your reaction would be to punch the guy in the chops, show every woman the same respect you’d show the women in your life and keep your mouth shut.

If none of this seems important and you think it’s all a silly overreaction (particularly if you’re a woman) I urge you to read Caitlin Moran’s How To Be a Woman. It’s the most fantastic, rich, funny, honest book you’ll find about being a woman and I cannot recommend it highly enough. If you disagree with what I’ve said here, I almost guarantee you’d take a different view on Randy Orton’s humiliation of Kelly Kelly after reading it – women and men.

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Let’s take a moment to consider Randy Orton.

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He’s bronzed to the eyeballs, has thighs seemingly carved from granite and cheekbones to die for. He’s mean, moody, has megalomaniac tendencies and gives off an all encompassing stench of hatred. To quote Jerry Lawler, “Somehow, evil isn’t meant to look this good.” You got that right, Jez.

How soon we forget the young, cheeky boy who flirted with cougars and had a sense of humour. So it was the sense of humour of a dumbass frat boy, but at least he had one. Maybe I’m being a bit harsh. I can hardly shun him for having the SoH of an 18 year old boy if I share it. It’s tough being a class-a heel. One is expected to wallow in their world domination plans without even the tiniest flicker of a smile unless it relates directly to said world domination.

Last week this slice of YouTube goodness fell into my lap and I couldn’t help but share. Thanks to the young man who sent it to me. You are a scholar and a gent. As with Mickie, Punk and Jericho’s forays in to the glorious world of Grease karaoke, go and watch Randy pump that iron, then come back to me.

I seem to have developed Orton-Amnesia. I totally forgot he used to be a sleaze, taking two ladies of a certain age to the gym (along with awesome tough-girl Jacqui). I will admit that sometimes when I’m in the gym I use some pleasant wrestle-based visualisations to squeeze out those last few chest flies. But if I actually had Randy overseeing my activities and reminding me to “Really put the emphasis on that CHEST!!!!” I’d have to ask him to step out of my eyeline for a few. No, Randy. Your face pressing in to my ear is not a stress reliever. It just makes me hyperventilate.

Asking the ladies to grab a little higher on his thighs? Well, if you insist. Count his abs? Yeah, sure. Can’t do more than six reps because the ladies of St. Louis rely on his endurance levels? Ok, now you’re just sounding like The Miz but without the great comedy timing. But what probably seals the sleazy deal is when he asks his radio contest winner not just if she feels the burn, but wheeeere she feels the burn. Torturous! Randy, now you’re just playing twister with their oestrogen levels.

I have to say though, the DJ lady is obviously a regular gym-goer. Very impressive arms, Monica. Vicky, the contest winner, claims never to have stepped inside a gym before. Bullshit!  Unless she does some other kind of bicep developing sport, she’s telling porkies. You don’t get a nice little bicep bump like that out of nowhere. I know. I try and usually fail.

You know, maybe badass Randy isn’t so bad after all. Sculpted and grumpy beats sleazy but cheery any day of the week.

RAW(lite) – the wrestling N.Y.D

So, this post is kind of late in the week, but what with the mammoth Wrestlemania post and setting up the new site and, you know, normal life, this is the first chance I’ve had to write it.  The first Raw after Wrestlemania is always a strange affair.  It’s like the WWE New Year’s Day. The day after the biggest party of the year. Some are full of regret about what went down the night before, and others are brimming with excitement about the future.

We begin with Randy Orton. Awwww. His face hurts. Yeah, well, you know what? My brain hurts from that rubbish ending to Wrestlemania. But that’s not your fault, honey.  Christ, I’m calling Randy Orton HONEY now. I’ve changed.

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But let’s move on.    Randy Orton is one of the best heels around. Seriously, he reeks of creepy badness.  I love it…. and a week ago I never would have said that.  Vince came out in a shade of blazer no man should ever wear, shouting the odds in that unhealthy gravel he calls a voice and punching his finger at Orton with such force I’m surprised he couldn’t feel it up there on the ramp.

Orton spouted a tirade of abuse and challenged Mr. M to fight him, alone, on Raw, without Shane or Triple H to prop him up.  NEVER has the word SIR seemed like such an insult. AMAZING! After much lip-trembling and eye-popping we got a big fat “YOU’RE OOOOOON!” Loverly.

One of the things I miss  during PPVs are the backstage conversations that are ‘just for us to see’. That’s the theatrical shit that makes it work for me.  So, back in the office a 60-something multi-millionaire is taking his clothes off to take on a man young enough to be his son. His actual son is none too chuffed at what his old man has set himself up for. Can I just take a moment to say how much I LOOOOVE Shane’s grey temples?  When I first started watching wrestling he was this irritating, uncool kid. Now he’s quite the distinguished gentleman. Me happy girl. Shane couldn’t persuade daddy he was making a bad move…..’cause Vince, just…just….WANTS ‘IM. hehe. A silly scene, but it made me laugh.

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On to the Divas.  Smackdown Vs Raw, to be precise.  With the Draft coming up tomorrow, a big wrestlegasm in itself, it’s important that anyone who might be in the frame for a change of office cubicle gets an airing the week beforehand. Just so you know who they are. They pulled off some pretty nice moves in this match.  And how cool is Mickey James? She’s wicked! I kind of want to BE her. And I kind of have a girl-crush on Kelly-Kelly. But you don’t wanna know about that, do ya? Well, maybe another day.  In the meantime,  enjoy his picture of my heroine. Luv yaaaaaa!

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Shane is still stressing behind the scenes, so he turns to his brother-in-law for assistance. God, I love watching them talk to each other. I know this is ‘for TV’ and they obviously have a lighter convo style in real life, but I like to imagine them talking to each other on Christmas Day like that. By the way, best man-hug-moment I’ve seen in AGES.

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On to the All Star Tag Team Match – Raw Vs Smackdown. Good Lord, I think I might combust. Chris Jericho, John Cena, CM Punk, Jeff Hardy, Matt Hardy, Edge, Big Show, Kane, Rey Mysterio and Ricky Steamboat all in one match. Shit. What a combo. My pants thank you.  By the way, I am TOTALLY falling in love with Punk. It’s the Chicago thing, I think. It tipped me over the edge. Also, one of my favourite moments of the night – Rey Mysterio giving his mask fringe to a random kid in the crowd. Awww. Bless. I predict that kid will be on Raw 15 years from now telling the story of how Rey inspired him to be a wrestler. I guarantee it.

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Only the day after Wrestlemania would we see this many main eventers in one match. That doesn’t normally happen. We don’t even see these boys all on one SHOW, let alone in one match. They usually spread the top talent out.  What a TREAT! Every time a new hand slapped that of someone in the ring, I got a lovely little buzz of eeeeeeeeee-xcitement. I gotta say, how freakin’ awesome is Ricky Steamboat? This man is older than my dad! He’s 56 years old, for god’s sake. I agree with the chanting crowd. “You still goooot it!!!!”. And I love how much everyone hates Jericho at the moment. I laughed out loud when Chris came in to do some damage to Steamboat and Michael Cole blasted “Here comes Jericho like a VULTURE! Chris Jericho’s a VULTURE.” But a really hot vulture, yah?

I can’t tell you much more about the match, other than it left me feeling very fulfilled. To be honest, they could have ended Raw right there and I would have given it a glowing report.

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On we go….Triple H, in a battle of the noses,  was unable to persuade daddy-dearest that scrapping with Orton was just silliness, and we were joined in the arena by Vicky Guerrero. I know it’s her job to be annoying, but bloody hell, that voice. Urgh! And the way she pronounces ‘Orton’ winds me up. Vicky, it’s OR-TON. OOOOR-TTTTTON. So, she has opted to be Raw general manager in preparation for next week’s draft. Curious.Veeery curious.  I kind of skipped the Santina thing. I watched it but tried to block it out.  It makes me want to punch my fist through a wall.

In no time at all (wow, that was a quick Raw) we’re at the main event of the evening. Mr. Vincent Kennedy McMahon against Randy Orton….or Randy Orrrun as Vicky calls him. I wasn’t expecting much of the match.  I figured Legacy would be back on the scene, having been so rudely left out of Wrestlemania. And I supposed that Triple H and Shane would retaliate. But what actually happened was totally unexpected…at least to me. I HATE spoilers with a passion. Maybe others knew it was going to happen, but I like to see things as they play out. Otherwise, where’s the excitement?  Oh, yeah, I haven’t told you what happened. Duh! Ok…….

As predicted, it was a complete mis-match. Shane couldn’t take it any more, flew in to the ring and started pummelling Orton. I love watching Shane fight. He still seems like a little boy to me. Cute little thing that he is. Rhodes and DiBiase joined in to save their leader from a further ShaneOMac-attack, Orton joined in and then The Game put his oar in. Of course. Everything’s going just as I had anticipated. With all the McMahon brood under the cosh, they needed some assistance. But who’s gonna be their hero?

Some VERY loud guitar chords blast in to the arena.  Only regular wrestling viewers will understand this, but you know when someone hasn’t been around for a while….maybe because they’ve been injured…… then they return unexpectedly. The music hits and you know the music, and the cogs in your brain start revolving to figure out who it is. It only takes a second. Maybe two. But I love that moment where you realise who it is. THEY are wrestlegasm moments.

So, who was it………..

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OH MY GOD! It was so amazing.  Even though I’m kind of in Orton’s camp since WM, Dave looked so bloody cool. He picked Legacy off one at a time and got all three to scamper off up the ramp. I repeat, SO. BLOODY. COOL. And a TOTAL wrestlegasm moment. Seeing him with his old pal and Shane up there in the ring made my week.

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But the best moment of all was when Vince, lying outside the ring in his black smock, said……………………………………………

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Randy Orton was beside himself. Devastated. So now we have a brand new feud on the go. Just like that. That’s why I love this nonsense.

FAVOURITE CROWD MEMBER OF THE SHOW

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This lady, who seemed absolutely MORTIFIED that Primo and Carlito had taken the Tag-Team belts. I cannot imagine how involved she got with the more interesting stuff. Now THAT’S DEDICATION!

FINAL THOUGHTS

I am super-excited about tomorrow’s draft. I loooooove the draft. A spot of Spring cleaning is always refreshing. And a few surprises are always very welcome.

I’ll do a quick Smackdown recap tomorrow morning (BST) to bring everything nicely up to do date. This long Easter weekend is proving to be very handy.

BLEARY EYED AND SATISFIED: DIARY OF A WRESTLEMANIA HANGOVER

[This post was originally posted on http://buymyown.wordpress.com and has been imported in to wrestlegasm.com by the author]

Ahhh Wrestlemania.  The highlight of the wrestling calendar. Trying to strike the balance between expectation and delivery is like walking a 50ft tightrope. It could swing either way with the tiniest slip of the heel. But from tightropes and heels to turnbuckles and, well, heels. But I’m not talking about the round bit at the back of your foot this time.  The hype surrounding the Triple H v Randy Orton match had reached fever pitch and promised to be the explosive culmination of not only their saga, but also the entire WM25 weekend. Did it deliver all that was expected? Well, you’ll just have to read on won’t you.

Sunday. Wrestlemania day. AAAAAAAAAARGH! The excitement was beginning to build and I set about baking my WM25 cupcakes. Yep. That’s right. I baked Wrestlemania cupcakes and spent almost the entire afternoon icing them in a suitable fashion. Ah what fun. Whaddaya think? Want one? Just don’t take the John Cena ones. I want to eat John all by myself. Aight? 😉

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Before anyone emails or comments to let me know that Hulk Hogan has nothing to do with this year’s event…. yes, I AM aware.  But my buddy Emma Monkey has love for just one wrestler. Hogan. Don’t even ask. I had to make her a Hogan cupcake or she would have beaten me up. Also take note of my Ric Flair WOOOOO! cake. I added some icing tears for him. Doesn’t Flair always look like he’s just finished watching The Notebook or something?

Anyway, let’s crack on. I took a one hour nap to get me through the long night ahead. I dragged myself toward the TV  in my new PJs  just as it was starting. Oooh the excitement.  WHOA! All those people. All those fireworks. All those MILLIONS of dollars in Vince McMahon’s bank account.

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Speaking of money in the bank (b0om-boom)……

The MITB match was brill. I was convinced that Kofi Kingston would win.  At some point, if he doesn’t eff his chance up, he will get a big push, you mark my words.  I love ladder matches.  They’ve got that sinister “anyone could break a bone at any moment” allure. My brother, who only watches wrestling sporadically these days, called it that CM Punk would do the double.  Good for him. Punk, not my flukey brother. Punk has potential as a  future crush if any of the others bid the ring farewell. And I do have a thing for boys from his part of the world.

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Time for a musical interlude. Kid Rock. Kid Rock? Really? Well. Ok, then. I don’t really get the choice of crooner and I’m not a fan, but whatever. It’s the early hours of Monday morning and I’ll take anything I can get to keep me awake.  What the hell was wrong with that crowd? Did I miss something? They reacted as if he had just announced himself as a serial killer or something. Did he? I was  a bit sleepy.  There is a possibility I could have dozed off. I’m don’t like his music but I would at least show some respect, fools. Maybe it was the NYC hipster glasses.  They say “I think (I’m cool), therefore I am.” No.

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His set neatly left the ladies of the WWE in the ring. Oh God. I want so much to respect this, but I’m struggling. I admire the women in the WWE. No, really. Let me explain. The majority are displayed as nothing greater than Playboy mansion rejects and yet to keep their bodies in that kind of shape they have to work bloody hard. They rarely get a decent storyline that isn’t based entirely on sex and often they only get a really mainstream push if they’re written on to the arm of one of the big boys. Oh dear. I’ve gone a little off topic I’ll have to come back to this in a future post, I think.

So, the match. I wasn’t paying that much attention until I realised there was a strange looking “Lady” in a Victoria Beckham wig in the corner. Urggggggh, no. Santino. I know he’s a comedy character and it’s all meant to be taken in jest, but I’m over this Santina thing before it even gets going. I thought it would end up with Beth and “Santina” in the ring with Beth winning. Nope. A MAN was Miss Wrestlemania.  I give up. *smacks forehead*

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On to a proper(ish) match. Lover numero uno, Chris Jericho, was in action against the legends and the prospect of a probable appearance from Mickey Rourke hung in the air. Incidentally, I know he made an awesome film about this industry that I love, but I can’t get over how awful he looks. The best advertisement for living a clean life if ever I saw one.  He looked about as uncomfortable as a Hollywood comeback kid could look sitting in the front row with all the rowdy wrestling meatheads.  NOTE TO SELF: Remember that actors are not the characters they play.

Jericho’s music hit and I got a funny feeling in my tummy. The first of many that night. Out he came  (cue gratuitous pants shot)……………..

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Mmm. Nice. He was closely followed by the legends. Piper is holding up well, despite his personal troubles, although, he’s the most American Scot I’ve ever  heard. Apart from maybe John Barrowman. Jimmy Snuka, bless him. Even pulling on his tribal threads can’t hide the fact that he’s rolling down the other side of the hill. Fair play to him for having a go though. Ricky ‘The Dragon’ Steamboat is in surprisingly remarkable shape.  If I were 30 years older……..no. That’s just wrong.  Then there’s the tearful pack-leader, Ric Flair. I hear that Flair was the life and soul of the party at the hotel, entertaining fans and colleagues alike. Good on ya, fella.  Naming no names, but maybe you could teach some of the more junior boys that skill. (I’ll name names later on…..don’t disappear before the end, k?)

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Jericho won the match, which surprised me. I was sure the old timers would bring it on home. But then, where could it have gone from there? Mickey Rourke was goaded in to joining my man in the ring, despite the reservations of the faux cronies, who he was flanked by in the crowd.  He smooshed Jericho in the chops and Flair encouraged the crowd to heap praise upon Hollywood. Bastards!

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I’d like to tell you all about the Hardy brothers match, but between making some tea, gathering my snacks and rescuing one of my cats from a mishap, I missed a lot of it. Sad but true. But I did end up with a happy cat and sustenance for the rest of the night.

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Then on to Rey Mysterio v JBL, which was so short it’s not even worth a picture. Oh yeah, and JBL quit. A week before the draft? Hmmm. Interesting. Not really.  Who cares? I was starting to feel a little disappointed with WM25. It was all………..fine, but I wasn’t feeling blown away.  My hypothetical tightrope walker was looking wobbly. Very wobbly. But that was all about to change.

Last week I was feeling fairly uninspired by the Undertaker/Shawn Michaels match.  In fact, I believe I said that Michaels was….kind of…MEH! Ouch! I’m sorry. Sometimes I get caught up the in matches that involve the boys I fancy the pants off and forget the others.  This match was not just the best match at Wrestlemania this year, it was one of the best freakin’ matches I’ve EVER seen. That’s in ten years of wrestling. I am in TOTAL AWE. Move after move, after move, after move……. it was a beautifully choreographed dance between partners who seemed to know each other so well it flowed without so much as a second thought. Oh yeah, after many a count-out saved by a last second raise of the arm, Undertaker scooped up the win. Urgh! My cupcake lied. But how could it lie to me when it was so delicious?  Kind of reminds me of this……

  • hmMindy: What’s wrong?
  • Homer: Oh, yeah, like you don’t know.  [weeping] We’re gonna have sex!
  • Mindy: Oh…well, we don’t have to.
  • Homer: [sad] Yes we do! The cookie told me so.
  • Mindy: Well…desserts aren’t always right.
  • Homer: But they’re so sweet.

I don’t think I’ll be using the ‘predictions by cupcake’ method again. Last week I said it wasn’t really about what happens in the ring. That’s not entirely true. The dramaz can’t live without quality wrestling and the top-notch ring action can’t function without a context.   A truly, truly fantastic match.  My tightrope walker just got his balance back. Now, someone please pass me the humble pie…..and a fork.

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I kind of feel sorry for anyone who has to follow that. I mean, seriously, TOUGH BREAK!  But if you can’t compete with the moves you might as well go with a soap opera storyline.  Infidelity, passion, revenge…yep, it can only be  Edge, Big Show and the light of my life….John Cena. BE STILL MY BEATING PANTS! With Edge and Big Show already in the ring I was curious to know if John Cena would use some kind of special gimmick to get himself in the ring.  My fave was Wrestlemania 22. Remember? The 1920s gangster thing?  Oooorgh. I loved it.  Click here if you need a reminder. This time, I thought all my Christmases had come at once. What appeared to be hundreds of  cloned John Cenas made their way down the ramp. There are  a million dirty jokes I could tell in relation to this, really, I’ve got a lot, but I’ll save you from them for now. Just look at the picture and make up your own.jce

The match itself wasn’t mindblowing, but following Undertaker/Michaels, anything would have looked a little bland.  I watched it back a couple of times. It was good and I’m super-chuffed that John Cena managed to impress my brother when he lifted both Big Show and Edge on his back. Wow! That kind of strength is……SUPER-WOW! If he can pick them up he could TOTALLY hold me up. Errrr, moving on. Swiftly. Before I combust.

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I was tired, but I was holding my own and staying awake.  Here’s proof ………….

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John won the match, which made me a smiley-kylie, but it also made it far less likely that Randy Orton would win the final match of the night. You can’t have two belts on RAW. Don’t get me wrong….I love Triple H, but that hold he has over backstage proceedings can be slightly nauseating at times. Anyway, before the headliner, time for a a little Hall of Fame styleee interlude. They all came on out, waved to the adoring crowd and we waited for the GOD that is Stone Cold Steve Austin to appear in an ill-fitting suit.

There he was. What a hero. What a legend. What a…..hey…..WHERE’S HE GOING? Why is he walking off the stage when everyone else is still on the stage? Maybe it was because it was somewhere between 3am and 4am and I was not quite feeling human, but I totally bought it.  I found myself wondering what contentious backstage spat had made everyone’s favourite beer-drinker walk off-stage. Then this happened….

sssaIt. Was. Amazing. I didn’t just smile, I beamed. BEAMED. God, I wish he was still around. Damn his severe neck injury that forced early retirement. I’ll love you forever Stone Cold. FOR-EH-VAH!

On to the main event of the night – Triple H v Randy Orton for the WWE Championship belt. The day before Wrestlemania I proclaimed to my boyfriend that I hated Randy Orton (he’s a huge fan) and that Triple H would be my victorious hunny-bunny. Then on Sunday morning the boyf told me some stories about Triple H that broke my heart.  Apparently, he had been snippy with fans attending Wrestlemania, refusing to sign autographs, have pictures taken and speak with fans. I don’t know if it’s true or not. I mean, it’s the interwebz, they could just be spreading nasty rumours. But it took some of the shine off for me. Maybe I need to promote CM Punk to lover number 3 and put Hunter or probation. Yeah, I’m sure he’s devastated about that. As a result of the rumour mill, I went in to the match a little subdued – still not thinking much of Randy Orton. But that was about to turn on its head, thanks to one line from Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler.

I watched as Randy Orton slithered his way down the ramp like some kind of big cat, hoping that the excitement I feel when I hear “Time to Play the Gaaaaaame!” would still feel the same. I watched Randy Orton. I watched and admired his physique. “Whether I like him or not, his body is AMAZING. PERFECT, even.” I thought. Then The King gave me a Wrestlegasm moment. Well, his words did anyway. The camera zoomed in on Orton, and after a long pause, out of nowhere, came:

“Somehow, evil isn’t supposed to look that good.  He looks like he was chiseled from stone.”

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WRESTLEGASSSSMMMMM! They were the perfect words at the perfect moment.  I bloody love you, Lawler. And you Orton. How the hell did that happen? Fastest U-turn ever. I should go in to politics. All of a sudden I found myself in Randy Orton’s corner. My boyfriend predicted that, somehow, I would eventually fall under Orton’s spell. I thought he was crazy. He’s obviously a very sane young man after all. Triple H’s entrance was pretty impressive, throwing a sledge hammer through a mirrored wall and all, but he had already lost my heart to Orton. At the very least I hoped for an explosive match. Errrrm…..didn’t quite happen.

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The match didn’t have the in-ring WHOA-Factor of Taker/Michaels, and didn’t deliver the intense, bitter, family-fueled drama it promised. CHEATEEEEED! Where were Legacy? I only commented the day before on how great of an opportunity it was Rhodes and DiBiase to be part of such a huge story. Yeah, well, there was no place for them at Wrestlemania. No Stephanie, no Linda, bearly a glimpse of Vince and Shane. What a crock of shit!.  It’s not that the wrestling was terrible, it’s just that, after such an enormous build-up, it all went a bit flat. Like the air slowing seeping out of a bicycle tyre.  Triple H took home the belt and we were left with him on the ropes being all victorious like, and the crowd leaving. The crowd were leaving the Wrestlemania stadium BEFORE IT WAS EVEN OFF THE AIR. Oh dear. That can’t be good.

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All in all I enjoyed my (very) early morning romp with my wrestle-boys-n-girl……or was it a really late night? I dunno. I took myself off to bed just after 4am, slept til 8:30am and spent most of this week trying to recover the hours I lost and the skin under my eyes. I’ve got some MAJOR luggage under my eyeballs. But it was sooooooo worth it.

Final shout out of the night goes to this couple, who managed to get a full shot of the Welsh flag on screen. Well done, darlings. Proud of ya.

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RAW(Lite): THE CHAOS BEFORE THE STORM

[This post was originally posted on http://buymyown.wordpress.com and has been imported in to wrestlegasm.com by the author]

Ok, so, my first proper wrestling post. I’ve been looking forward to this. This is actually my favourite week of the whole wrestling year- the week before Wrestlemania. I wish they would put this much effort in to EVERY week and not just before Wrestlemania.  Apparently they’re trying super-hard to be entertaining this time around to reach one million global PPV buys. Good luck to ya, Vinnie.

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My love of the WWE, or the WWF as it was called back in the days when I first discovered it’s greatness, is about a decade old. I was first seduced by bulging biceps back in 1999 and once you get sucked it, it never ever leaves you. It’s like a tattoo on your arse. You don’t want to admit it’s there but it is. And it’s not going away.  I remember my brother trying to kick me in the face shouting “SWEET CHIN MUSIC! SWEET CHIN MUSIC!” I needed to find out what the hell that meant, and I was VERY pleased with what I saw.

I know what folks think. It’s not real. They’re not actually hurting each other. They decide the winner in advance. Well,  a lil bit yah, a lil bit nah. Yeah, they decide who’s going to win waaaay in advance. They’ve got a whole team of writers who decide what path the characters will take. And that’s the point. They are CHARACTERS. It’s a soap – with good guys, bad guys, comedians, bitches, sexy boys, sexy girls, romances, bromances, back-stabbing, family feuds….I could go on but you see where I’m coming from, right?

It’s NOT ABOUT what happens in the ring. At least, not for me. I likes me some dramaz. And I LO-O-O-O-V-E the beautifully buff bods that go along with it all. In fact, it was The Rock’s glossy pecs that got me to stick around after the sweet chin music novelty wore off. But seriously, if it wasn’t for the Rock being such a smooth operator, I wouldn’t be boring you with this post right now. Ain’t life grand?

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Ok, look , they may not actually be punching each other in the chops, kicking each other in the knackers or cracking each other across the back with steel chairs (I personally think they’re made of turkey foil), but what they do to each other HURTS. It REALLY HURTS!  That ring is HARD. It’s not like the guy in the T-Mobile Flext ad where everything is soft and sqidgy.  Oh no.

THIS is what it’s REALLY like………………………

Oh My God, Paul. You are awesome. Can I please be your friend? See, I called him Paul ’cause that’s his real name and if we were buds, I’d be calling him Paul. See? Yeah, I know. I’m a loser.

That’s enough preaching for one day. The best brainwashing is ALWAYS done quietly and sneakily. So watch your back, I’m planting wrestle-love in your brain and it spreads like wildfire.  Now let’s see just what made my boat float on Raw this week.

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This one HAS to be good. This is Vince McMahon’s penultimate opportunity to persuade the public that they should spend their precious wages on his product instead of, you know, paying the phone bill and feeding the dog.

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I am a self -confessed Chris Jericho junkie. Not just a fan. He gets my motor running. Like Vrrrrroooooom! Not sure what it is. Probably the fact that he’s a Rock n Roll GOD. Probably the short blonde tresses and the extreme hotness. The fact that he’s a really lovely bloke, despite all that nasty ‘punched a female fan’ business. Those idiots were prodding and poking at him like was a caged animal in the zoo. The girl in question  spat on him and hit him. What, you think because someone’s famous you can get away with abusing them? Morons. Then there’s the humour. Ahh the humour, which  I am currently mourning the loss of.  Come back jolly-Jericho! I dig your heart-stopping stares and the flashy suits, but I miss the laffs. I  also dig that Canadian lilt. “You been hanging aboot the hoose today, eh?” Ahh. Tingles.

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So off the back of the whole Mickey Rourke thing, Y2J is taking on some of the legends being inducted in to the Hall of Fame on Saturday. He will, of course, lose. There’s no way the old statesmen will be defeated by a pip-squeak on their old-timers’ club trip to Houston. On Raw he took on Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler. What the hell is this? Help the Aged? Only joking. Wrestling ain’t wrestling without you squalking all over it, King. LOVE YA! It’s all very well and good, and the Mickey Rourke angle will catch a bit of media attention, but after it’s over, give my fella a proper storyline, alright? Eeeeexcellent.

On to my other lover. Jooooooohn Ceeeeeena. Ohhh baby. Apparently he is getting married to a girl he’s known since they were kids. Pffft. Thanks, John. Why don’t you just rip my heart out and hold it in front of my face, eh? Anyway. Yes. Wrestling.  Ahem. While Chris Jericho does his mean and moody thing, John is tickling my funny bone. No, that’s not a euphemism. Although, he should consider it socially acceptable to tickle me anywhere he chooses.  He really is making me LOL. I love-love-loved his greeting card for Vicky Guerrero last week. In fact, I love it so much I think I’ll watch it again. Join me if you will……

Oh John. Why so cute? Anyway, this week it was all action. Vicky, Edge and Big Show went about their strange lust triangle and John kept his pretty eyes on the pretty prize – Edge’s World Heavyweight belt. Edge even tried to sweet-talk John in to teaming up with him so they could, you know, hold hands and defeat the unnatural giant that is the Big Show together at Wrestlemania. Cheeky, bugger. My boy declined. Of course.

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I’d be quite happy to loiter around JC’s locker room with a wide-lens camera a little longer, but it’s time to move on to the Undertaker / Shawn Michaels thing.  I’ m not a big fan of either. I like HBK when he’s doing DX with my third honey, but on his own I find him….. kind of… meh! [Sorry, Foster. Don’t hate me] The other thing that’s winding me up about Michaels is that, from what I’ve heard, he has used his new-found religion to get out of doing certain things, and yet he is exploiting it in this current feud just for the sake of the story.  It kind of smacks of double standards.  Having said that, I’d like to see Taker lose, just for a change.  Apparently it’s illegal for Undertake to lose at Wrestlemania.

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Now on to the big one. The storyline giving me a total lady-boner. The match you ARE going to buy Wrestlemania for. Promise me? Your fingers better not be crossed.  It’s Triple H (+the McMahon Family) vs Randy Orton, flanked by his two errand boys (Cody Rhodes and Ted DiBiase).  OH MY GOD. Anything that involves Triple H and Stephanie McMahon in the same storyline makes me go in to total Cheshire cat mode.  And the fact that their marriage straddles that blurry WWE line between reality and fantasy confuses and delights me at the same time.

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After the  events of last week, I wondered how much more drama they could pack in to this story. Maybe it’s reached its peak? Orton handcuffed Hunter to the ropes, beat him up, dragged Stephanie in to the ring, knocked her unconscious and softly pressed his lips to hers while Triple H watched on in despair. Nice, eh?

So there’s Randy Orton, he of the shiniest thighs on the planet, in the ring telling us how fucking amazing he is. Ok, he didn’t F. But it was THAT strong! A shiny limo rolls up outside and, oh baby, now some shit’s gonna go down. What’s gonna happen? What’s gonna happen? AAAARGH! Tell me. Orton brings up the lights, calls out his errand boys and a gaggle of security dudes for protection. One again….. OH. BABY.

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We all wait for Triple H to appear. But HARK, who is that? VINCE. IT’S VINCE. OH MY GOD. AWESOME. No chance, that’s just what you got. Indeed, indeed, Mr. M.  By the way, what has Vince been up to in the gym while he’s been away? Has he had his skin replaced with an inflatable material that somone has to pump air in before he goes out in public? He looked….so…..well….INFLATED! Jacket comes off, tie flies off, sleeves rolled up, the old fella’s ready for a brawl I tells ya.

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A few seconds more and Shane appears. Oh God. This is too too too good. Who’s the third gonna be? Stephie? Linda? Baaaa0000m! Baaoom-Baaoom! TIME TO PLAY THE GAME. Yeeeeeeeey! Triple H. Standing sideways, looking livid. After much fierce staring (and my gasping for air for lover number three) The McMahon Men strode strongly towards the ring in unison. I swear to GOD, if there is such a thing as a Wrestlgasm, I had one.  A BIG ONE. OOOOOOOORGHHHHH!

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If you don’t want to cough up some cash for Vince McMahon after that, I don’t know what else will persuade you.  It all ended in giant punch-fest which, quite frankly, left me needing a cigarette. Observe……….

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Now I’m off to contemplate what might happen on Smackdown and to start googling mocktail recipes for my Wrestlemania party-for-one in the early hours of Monday. Oh timezones. Why must you torture me so?

ENDNOTE: NEVER let me Santino Marella in a mankini again. Ever, ever, ever. As if the fake uni-brow wasn’t hideous enough.  I’m just thankful he had shorts on underneath. Eesh!