BRM Reviews the 7/18/2017 Smackdown (boring)

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Big Red Machine
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BRM Reviews the 7/18/2017 Smackdown (boring)

Post by Big Red Machine » Jul 20th, '17, 14:30

JINDER MAHAL CUTS A PROMO FROM INSIDE THE PUNJABI PRISON- well… at least we got this out of the way early.
They keep trying to tell me that this thing is dangerous, but I just can’t buy it because it’s a f*cking jungle gym. That’s what it is. A bunch of sturdy bars that you’re supposed to climb on. And even worse, I can barely see into the f*cking thing because there are so many bars, so it really doesn’t seem like it will be particularly enjoyable visual experience, ever.

It was nice to of them to actually run down the rules for the first time after talking this thing up for weeks and weeks. After explaining the rules to us, Jinder then shouts that “THERE ARE NO RULES!” The writers need to expunge this idiotic statement from their collective vocabulary immediately.
Also, Jinder is going to be Randy Orton and he hates America. He also claimed he would give Randy the Khallas off the top of the Punjabi Prison. I’m not even entirely certain that is physically possible. Jider begins to speak in Punjabi but Randy Orton shows up to interrupt him.
Randy points out the exact flaw in Jinder choosing the Punjabi Prison Match that I laid out the f*cking moment Jinder picked it. In doing so, he became the first person Smackdown to actually point out that the heel only beat the babyface in the title match because his lackeys interfered. IT’S BEEN OVER A MONTH SINCE THAT MATCH HAPPENED.
Randy says he has nothing left to lose. He starts to climb up the outer cage while talking. He’s trying to psych Jinder out by telling him that he has all 1.3 million people in India on his shoulders and they’ll think he’s a disgrace if he loses. Hasn’t Jinder known this all along? He himself has been saying that he is representing all of them. I’m sure this would have been a good promo if I came within twelve parsecs of giving a sh*t, but I really, truly don’t understand how anyone possible could.

JIMMY USO (w/Jey Uso) vs. KOFI KINGSTON (w/the New Day)- 5.25/10
Before this match they showed us a replay of last week’s rap battle from two weeks ago, because the thing they did to hype this feud last week was completely inconsequential. And does anyone remember what that thing was? That’s right! A member of the New Day vs. an Uso in a singles match. So yeah. I’m not that enthusiastic that this match will mean anything, either.
Then we got the announcers trying to hype up the PPV match, which consisted of Tom Phillips reminding us that The Usos walked out of the title match at the last PPV and thus retained their titles via count-out loss, followed by JBL reminding us that absolutely nothing has been done to prevent The Usos from doing so again at this PPV. The point of a gimmick match is to assure the fans that we should spend our money on this next show because whatever manner of injustice prevented us from getting a satisfying finish on the last show is going to be corrected for by this special stipulation. But here on Smackdown we’ve got The Usos walking out of a title match and no one doing anything to prevent them from doing so in the rematch, and meanwhile we have Randy Orton and Jinder Mahal having a Punjabi Prison Match for no other reason than because Shane McMahon randomly decided that their next match should have a stip and equally randomly decided that Jinder should be the one to pick it.
Jimmy won when Jey caused a distraction that delayed Kofi from going for a crossbody and when Kofi finally went for it Jimmy rolled through and pinned him. The match was fine, but that was it.

SHANE & THE WOMEN IN THE #1 CONTENDERSHIP MATCH BACKSTAGE- terrible, as always.
I like (read as: “can’t stand”) how Shane feels the need to give them this speech reminding them about the #1 contendership match they’re all in at the PPV, as if they somehow might have forgotten. Let me guess: we’re getting an inconsequential tag match tonight?
He says “I just have to figure out who is going to give us a competitive match-up here tonight.”
How about “any of them” BECAUSE THEY’RE ALL F*CKING PROFESSIONAL COMBAT ATHLETES!?
(And if you’re going to say Lana can’t, which is certainly something that could be backed up by evidence, then how about you don’t call her to this f*cking meeting just to embarrass her. Or even better, don’t have this meeting at all and just book a f*cking match before the show goes on the air BECAUSE THAT’S YOUR F*CKING JOB!)
Charlotte, Nattie, and Becky all want to fight Lana because they know she sucks. They could not have been more catty while doing it. At least Charlotte had a good reason (Lana interfered in her match last week) and Nattie is a heel so her trying to get an easy win makes sense, but Becky came off like a heel here, looking for the cheap win against someone clearly below her level. This was all done so that Tamina could stand up for Lana again, insisting that “no one is fighting Lana tonight.”
Nattie wants Shane to book Charlotte vs. Becky. More terrible dialogue ensues until Shane does his f*cking job and books Charlotte vs. Becky.
I absolutely f*cking LOATHE these segments. These segments with the women and the authority figures have got to be the most consistently terrible segments in wrestling over the past few years, and that includes 2015 heel “I SCREAM BECAUSE I’M CRAZY!” Eric Young promos, and those absolutely terrible segments in TNA last summer with the Hardys and Decay cutting promos on each other. At least I can tune out Bray Wyatt promos because I know by now that he won’t say anything that actually matters to the show.
The very existence of these segments makes the authority figures come off as lazy for not having booked the show yet. Then the way they are written makes them come off horrible. They have these atrocious double-standards, and Shane always comes off as extremely condescending because he’s the women a bunch of sh*t they all already know (and the fact that he doesn’t ever do this for the men makes it come off even worse).
Merely adding to the infuriation is the knowledge that the reason Shane has to say these things is because they figure that if they’re doing this segment they need to plug the PPV match to the audience, except that their whole “just pretend the cameras aren’t there” style of shooting the show means that Shane can’t talk to the audience in this context, so instead they have Shane say things intended for the audience to the women who already know these things. If you want Shane to talk to the audience JUST HAVE HIM TALK TO THE F*CKING AUDIENCE! And if you don’t want him to talk to the audience, then don’t have him plug the PPV match (let the announcers, whose job it is to talk to the audience, plug it later).
This whole style of doing things is so f*cking stupid. If you want us to pretend that the cameras aren’t there, you need to go all the way with it like Lucha Underground does, and have the announcers not even acknowledge these backstage conversations. They like to excuse the stupid quirks of their production (including this one) with the excuse that “we’re making movies,” but you would never see any of their stupid quirks (like everyone always facing the camera- hence why Shane has called a meeting between himself and these five women, which is being held with all six of them standing in a straight line, all facing the same direction) in a movie because, like Lucha Underground, in a movie you go all the way. In a movie you don’t acknowledge the camera because the camera isn’t there… and you similarly don’t acknowledge the existence of or block your scenes for the visual benefit of the audience because the audience isn’t there, either! What you’re doing is a f*cking sporting event and in sporting events the athletes look right into the cameras and talk to the viewing audience during interviews all the time! If you want to have Shane plug something to the audience, then go backstage to Shane sitting at his desk and making an announcement and looking professional (basically, do exactly what Regal does on NXT).
(End of side-rant. Now back to the main thing.)
Then you’ve the women, who are first forced to stand there and take Shane’s condescension with a smile before they engage in the most atrocious, catty dialogue in recorded human history. It’s atrocious, juvenile, lazily-written, painfully unnatural, and makes you wonder how any of them have ever had any friends at any point in their lives because they can’t be in a room together for forty seconds without it devolving into a gigantic f*cking bitch-fest. And it’s the same sh*t, week after week after week. It’s been THREE AND A HALF MONTHS SINCE WRESTLEMANIA. Here is a grand total of everything that has happened in the Smackdown Women’s Division:
1. Charlotte and Tamina came in the Superstar Shakeup.
2. Carmella won an MITB match
3. Lana decided she wanted to wrestle.

THREE F*CKING MONTHS! There have been fourteen episodes of Smackdown since the Superstar Shakeup, plus two PPVs. Do you know how many women’s matches since then have had actual consequences? Out of seventeen women’s matches on Smackdown and SD PPVs (counting the Becky vs. Charlotte match that happens later in this show) since the Superstar Shakeup, there have been, by my count, a grand total of FIVE women’s matches that have had actual consequences:
1. Charlotte beats Naomi to earn a title shot the first week after the Shakeup
2. The Welcoming Committee ruins the title match the next week
3. That match where Lana distracted Naomi to make Naomi angry enough to give her a title shot at MITB
4. The second women’s MITB (Carmella still won the briefcase, and this was the match that had actual consequences for Ellsworth)
5. The final Lana vs. Naomi match (the others didn’t matter because Lana just kept getting rematches)

Just five matches out of seventeen over the course of FIFTEEN WEEKS (sixteen if we want to count Superstar Shakeup week itself, where there were no women’s matches), and after the first two post-Shakeup weeks it’s just THREE out of THIRTEEN. From the title match screwed up by the welcoming committee to the match where Lana distracts Naomi we went ALMOST TWO WHOLE MONTHS WITHOUT A SINGLE FINISH MATTERING. There are times when it really, truly makes me angry that these people are getting paid to do a job that any wrestling fan would jump at the chance for (and probably for a lot less than these so-called “writers” are making, just out of a desire for the chance to do it) and they are so disgustingly incompetent at it.

RENEE YOUNG’S SIT-DOWN INTERVIEW WITH CHAD GABLE ABOUT JASON JORDAN’S REVELATION- basically, he’s a singles wrestler now. This wasn’t bad or anything, but it was really annoying to me that they’re asking all of these logical questions about how Gable feels about this, but no one has yet asked the question of how Jason Jordan, a Smackdown-contracted wrestler, is suddenly on Raw. The Superstar Shakeup was a kayfabe mechanism by which someone could switch shows. A poorly-explained and barely logical mechanism, but a mechanism nonetheless. Here we’ve got Jason Jordan just randomly being allowed to move to Raw, with no mention of any sort of compensation for Smackdown. Remember how Shane and Steph and Foley and Bryan would all insist that this was some sort of competition and letting the other brand do better in the ratings or win an interpromotional match with nothing on the line would somehow be disastrous? Well if that’s the case then why would Smackdown just let Jason Jordan go to Raw without any sort of compensation (and breaking up one of Smackdown’s top tag teams, to boot, making it basically a double whammy)?
Tomorrow marks the one-year anniversary of the new Brand Split, and last night Jason Jordan just suddenly became a member of the Raw roster with no kayfabe explanation whatsoever (meanwhile, “free agent” John Cena still hasn't shown up on Raw yet). Jason Jordan is on the other show now simply because the plot demanded it. They promoted the hell out of this Brand Split and made such a big deal about the draft and how we might never get to see certain match-ups again no matter how much we might want to, simply because the wrestlers in question were on separate shows… and they couldn’t stick to the core concept- that these are two separate promotions (but operating under the same parent company), each with their own separate roster of wrestlers that they have exclusive rights to- for a measly 365 days. They couldn’t even make it a year before just saying “f*ck it. We’ll just do whatever we want anyway.” That is insulting to me as a viewer, warns me not to have any faith in the concepts they set forth as important to their stories, and shows an inability to work within rather simple creative restrictions that makes me quite pessimistic that things will ever get better.

SAMI ZAYN vs. MIKE KANELLIS (w/Maria Kanellis)- 3/10
Mike after a distraction by Maria prevents Sami from following up, both buying him time to recover and also allowing him to punch Sami in the face while Sami was distracted. And when I say that Maria caused “a distraction,” I mean she was in the ring for a good minute or so and the referee for some reason didn’t eject her from ringside.

JOHN CENA PROMO- was boring until he brought up World War II, at which point I got annoyed. John Cena said that “Pearl Harbor was burned to the ground.” There are two ways to interpret John’s statement- either that the actual harbor was burned (which it wasn’t because it’s made of water) or that the military instillation at Pearl Harbor was burned to the ground, which is not even close to true. The Japanese pretty much only targeted the ships in the water and the airfield. They did not even try to attack important facilities like the drydocks, shipyards, submarine piers, and munitions depots. Also, someone please let Cena know that WWII did not end with the invasion of Normandy.
This was the sort of thing that could have been a really great promo, but this whole feud and flag match is so completely out of nowhere that it all just feels phony and exploitive to me.

RUSEV JUMPS CENA FROM BEHIND- well… we needed some heat going into this match and now we’ve got it, so that’s good.

AJ & NAKAMURA BACKSTAGE- Nakamura wants AJ’s US Title. Well… did pin the champ three months ago and still hasn’t gotten a title shot, so he definitely deserves it.

CHARLOTTE FLAIR vs. BECKY LYNCH- 6.5/10
Nattie is on commentary. It feels like generic heel Nattie ran out of things to say months ago, so she’s just another obnoxious voice on commentary repeating the same old sh*t. The match was pretty meh until the final three minutes or so, which were quite great.

POST-MATCH SEGMENT- meh
Charlotte and Becky shake hands after the match. Tamina and Lana then come out because the plot demanded that they come out (either that or they were dumb enough to think that the one and a half of them had a chance against Charlotte and Becky). Nattie jumped the babyfaces from behind, which led to a bit of a schmoz. Tamina and Lana stood tall at the end after Tamina hit Nattie with a superkick. This segment right here was all that was needed to hype up the women’s match on the PPV, making the earlier segment with Shane even more infuriating due to how pointless it was.

RENEE YOUNG INTERVIEWS NAOMI- She won’t be defending her title at the PPV like a real champion, but she’ll congratulate whoever wins the #1 contendership match. Yeah. Because that’s what people want to see at the PPV. She cut the same promo that it feels like she’s been cutting every week for months now: She’s happy to defend her title no matter who the #1 contender is, then she has some completely forced and utterly cringe-worthy attempt to create a catchphrase that includes the word “glow.” This week’s abomination was “I didn’t come here to play. I came here to glow.” Someone really needs to tell these writers to stop trying to make glow happen. It’s not going to happen.
Carmella shows up. Shoos Renee away just to be a heel, then tells Naomi that she will follow her around with her MITB contract. Metaphorically, I assume, but I’d totally be fine with vignettes of Carmella following Naomi into the supermarket or wherever (although Carmella would have to be holding the briefcase and Naomi would have to be wearing the title the whole time for it to work).

DREW GULAK 205 LIVE PROMO- I don’t even recognize him anymore.

FASHION FILES- there are other people in the house, so I’m skipping this.

AJ STYLES & SHINSUKE NAKAMURA vs. BARON CORBIN & KEVIN OWENS- 6.5/10
Nakamura tried to jump Corbin from behind. Again. Owens came out to help Corbin in this brawl on the ramp, so AJ came back from the ring to help Nakamura. They had a brawl that was quickly broken up so that they could go have their wrestling match.
USA Network decided that the season premiere of shooter needed an on-screen countdown clock, so the pretty much gave away when the finish would come. These guys tried hard, but had a lot of things working against them. Aside from the aforementioned clock, they had the fact that this was yet another match where there were absolutely no consequences, after not just a whole night of such matches, but in fact several weeks of pointless matches. Also, they had to contend with the fact that one of the participants in this match was Baron Corbin. Owens pinned AJ going into their title match because he’s the challenger at the PPV.

Yet another boring, frustrating episode of Smackdown. It feels like the only thing that has happened on this show all month has been Carmella winning MITB (for the second time in nine days) and Cena and Rusev returning (and even that second thing really only had one week of material for and then nothing happened the next two). Even AJ winning the title, odd and pointless as it was, would have qualified as something happening, but they did that a house show.


Hold #712: ARM BAR!

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KILLdozer
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Re: BRM Reviews the 7/18/2017 Smackdown (boring)

Post by KILLdozer » Jul 20th, '17, 16:08

Why the hell is it racist month on SD?

Cena and Rusev, Owens, IDIOT Kinder Mahal and those Bollywood Boyz, I'm sure I'm forgetting someone. Seriously? Everything is about race, on both ends.
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Re: BRM Reviews the 7/18/2017 Smackdown (boring)

Post by Serujuunin » Jul 20th, '17, 16:20

Big Red Machine wrote:
Jul 20th, '17, 14:30
basically, he’s a singles wrestler now.
I wonder if this is why they gave us the match with AJ a while back, complete with all the subtle camera direction in Gable's favour. I feel though, if they were trying to tell us that Gable is a competent singles wrestler before this all happened, they should have given Gable more than one singles match. That being said, I liked what I saw out of Gable, so I'm at least pleased that they're going to keep using him (in theory) for anything, if they insist on breaking up American Alpha.

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Re: BRM Reviews the 7/18/2017 Smackdown (boring)

Post by Serujuunin » Jul 20th, '17, 16:21

KILLdozer wrote:
Jul 20th, '17, 16:08
Why the hell is it racist month on SD?

Cena and Rusev, Owens, IDIOT Kinder Mahal and those Bollywood Boyz, I'm sure I'm forgetting someone. Seriously? Everything is about race, on both ends.
Haha I've been arguing that for many many months, not just here. It's like no one knows how to write a heel character that isn't from the States.

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Re: BRM Reviews the 7/18/2017 Smackdown (boring)

Post by KILLdozer » Jul 20th, '17, 17:30

Gable will inevitably end up attacking Jordan on Raw.

Owens was fine before it because his whole character. When he was with or against Jericho, it literally had nothing to do with him.
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