I know, I know, the show was two days ago, but I’ve been caught up in working on a new skin for BoredWrestlingFan. It’s not quite ready yet but I expect it to be up and running around Monday morning. I’ve put a lot of work into it, and it’s going to be the first theme to really break away from the original “BWF Classic” theme. It probably also doesn’t help that I started to watch SmackDown while it was on the other night, and didn’t really feel like watching it again to review it. Not to say that it was a bad show, at least what I’ve seen so far. Now that I’ve gone off on a rant about my reasons for not doing the review yet, I’ll get to work on this week’s WWE SmackDown on DVR review!
SmackDown review and thoughts (finally), after the jump!
In case you missed it: Video package detailing the events of last week, where Jeff Hardy and Triple H finished their respective Beat The Clock Challenge matches in the exact same amount of time. Vickie Guerrero makes the announcement a few days later that both men will face Edge in a triple threat match at Armageddon.
WWE SmackDown opening video plays. Again, it’s aired in the right spot, unlike the one on RAW. Either do the damned thing at the beginning of the show (as was the case here), or don’t do one at all.
JR reminds us once again that the WWE Championship will be defended in a triple threat match at Armageddon.
You think you know me…
Edge and Vickie make their way to the ring, as the WWE Champion is in action to kick off the broadcast. His opponent this evening is the one and only Kung Fu Naki!
Edge def. Kung Fu Naki
Believe it or not, Naki controls this match from the very beginning, even getting a few near falls on the champion. In shock from Edge kicking out of the crane kick, Naki gets a boot to the face from Edge, followed by a spear and a victory for the Rated R Superstar.
After the match, Vickie says that Edge delivered a masterful performance and asks for a round of applause for Edge (I’m clapping!). She’s proud of Edge, and it’s good to have him back on SmackDown. Since he had to compete tonight, she thinks it’s only fair that Jeff Hardy and Triple H will team up in a tag team gauntlet match. The two will have to wrestle one team after another until they finally lose. Vickie cackles and hugs Edge.
Later on tonight, The Undertaker takes on The Big Show inside a steel cage.
In case you missed it, part two: Last week on SmackDown, Michelle McCool blamed the Bella Twins (rightfully) for a tag team loss, then shoved Maria to the canvas when she came out to play peacemaker.
Maria def. Michelle McCool
Joey Styles would be screaming “catfight. CATFIGHT!” if he were calling the early parts of this match. The catfight, however, degenerates into a wrestling match, with Michelle mostly in control. An interesting spot during the match saw Maria choking Michelle with her foot in the corner, but Michelle powering out of it and dropping Maria into a split position. Michelle keeps control of the match until the very end, where Maria ducked out of the way of a roundhouse kick from Michelle, rolling up the Divas Champion for a non-title victory!
Later tonight: Jeff Hardy and Triple H team up in a tag team gauntlet match! Can they co-exist? We’ll find out later!
<COMMERCIAL BREAK> (The Slammys are Monday, and I’ll likely be posting thoughts on all of the categories between now and then)
Backstage, Maria is celebrating with the Bella Twins, who are hanging out with Primo and Carlito. Michelle shows up and boots Maria in the midsection. The Bellas ask if she’s ok, and Carlito remarks “that’s gonna leave a stain.” Seriously? A stain? A bruise, maybe, but a stain? The worst part is, he wasn’t on camera when he said it, they could have had him overdub something that made sence. They had two freakin’ weeks to do it!
Mr. Kennedy is in a straight to DVD movie. After The Marine and The Condemned, nobody really cares.
Big Show is here to remind The Undertaker that, even though ‘Taker locked him in a casket at the PPV, Show’s here and ready to destroy him in a steel cage. He’s even got a handy video package of him knocking out The Undertaker. Show says that ‘Taker’s powers are useless against him tonight (ThinkSoJoE note: Why are ‘Taker’s powers useless? Is the cage to The Undertaker’s powers as a butterfly net to Cosmo and Wanda’s magic on The Fairly Odd Parents? Yes, I did just make a Fairly Odd Parents reference. I have a four year old, I can get away with it!). The only things in that cage will be ‘Taker, Show, and Show’s fist.
MVP is in the ring when we come back, and he’s got something on his mind. He didn’t get his incentive bonus, so he can’t buy those really nice gifts for his family and friends that he wanted to get. They took away his cool entrance tunnel and his pyro. What they can’t take away, is what makes him MVP. He’s going to give himself a little gift to boost his holiday spirit. He’s going to pop that little pop-up sucka in his mouth.
Listen – IT’S TIME!
Making his return to the WWE, it’s Hurricane Helms! While he’s not in full blown super-hero mode, he does have The Hurricane’s symbol on his pants. He’s also got long hair again and a giant tattoo that says “HELMS” on his back. He also gets a “welcome back” chant from the fans. Neither John Cena nor Edge got one of those at Survivor Series.
Hurricane Helms def. MVP
Helms looks pretty good from an athletic standpoint in this match. He’s got a little gut now, but I guess that’s to be expected after being out as long as he’s been. MVP is in charge through the majority of the match, with some flurries of offense from Helms. MVP goes for a Playmaker, but much like he was on Tuesday against Matt Hardy, it was thwarted, and Hurricane Helms dropped him with kind of a reverse unprettier. Helms then hits the Shining Wizard for the victory.
Jeff Hardy is walking backstage, where he runs into Triple H. Hunter says that if Jeff gets in his way, he won’t make it to Armageddon. Hardy says he’s sick of The Game and that he’ll see him out there.
In case you missed it, rewound: Jeff Hardy and Triple H finished their respective matches in 12 minutes and 13 seconds last week.
TIME TO PLAY THE GAME!
Triple H makes his way to the ring, followed out by Jeff Hardy. Their first opponents here are former WWE Tag Team Champions, Curt Hawkins and Zack Ryder.
Triple H & Jeff Hardy in a Tag Team Gauntlet match
Match 1: Triple H & Jeff Hardy def. Hawkins & Ryder
Hawkins and Ryder? I almost forgot about those guys since they lost the titles to Carlito and Primo a few months back. In any event, this wasn’t about Hawkins and Ryder, it’s about dissention between Hardy and Hunter. Triple H drops Ryder with a Pedigree, and Hardy climbs the ropes, looking to Swanton Triple H, but Triple H moves off of the cover and it connects with Ryder instead. Triple H pins Ryder, and then the two men start shoving each other, until the sound of John Morrison’s music presented another pair of former WWE Tag Team Champions.
Match 2: John Morrison & The Miz def. Triple H & Jeff Hardy via count out.
Again, this was more about the dissension between the two challengers for Edge’s WWE Championship than it was about Miz and Morrison. For a few fleeting moments, it seemed as though Hardy and Triple H were going to work together, but it didn’t last long. The two men would tag in and out by pretty much chopping each other. Miz and Morrison showed a bit of offense, beating up The Game in their corner and trying to wear him down. Hardy, on the apron, gives a thumbs down, and the crowd boos, and then unenthusiastically encourages the fans to rally behind The Cerebral Assassin. The Game finally causes some separation from The Miz, and Hardy tags himself in. Hardy hits some of his usual spots, and then the match degenerates into chaos. With Miz, Morrison, and The Game outside of the ring, Hardy hits a plancha on all three men. He grabs The Miz and rolls him back into the ring, but as he tries to get in himself, Triple H grabs him, and the two men start battling away on the outside of the ring. Referees come out to try and separate them as Lil’ Naitch, Charles Robinson, counts the two of them out.
The two men battle for a few more moments, before WWE officials finally get them separated.
Later tonight, Big Show faces The Undertaker in a cage!
So, for the benefit of those with short attention spaaaaans!: Before the break, Jeff Hardy and Triple H tried to destroy each other.
Back in Vickie Guerrero’s office, Edge is enjoying the fact that his Armageddon opponents are tearing each other apart. To make Edge even happier, Vickie’s scheduled Jeff Hardy vs. Triple H for next week. As the two reconcile their marriage, Jeff Hardy barges in. Apparently Edge and Vickie wanted to see him. Edge said that he was tired of being blamed for taking Jeff out in his hotel before Survivor Series. He tells Jeff to think about it – who had the most to gain and the least to lose (ThinkSoJoE note: Vladimir Kozlov did.)? It was Triple H, that’s who! As if on cue, Triple H comes in, because apparently Vickie and Edge wanted to see him. Jeff attacks The Game, and they start brawling again. WWE officials finally break them up again, and Edge makes out with his wife.
It’s Hardy night here on WWE SmackDown, apparently, because Matt is on his way to the ring. Last week, he avoided Vladimir Kozlov long enough to knock him out of the WWE Championship picture.
Vickie Guerrero’s nephew is Matt’s opponent tonight, as JR seems to imply that this match has something to do with Jeff Hardy.
Matt Hardy vs. Chavo Guerrero ended in a no-contest
This is the match you’d expect out of these guys, back and forth, counter after counter. Both guys look good here, as they normally do, but the match ends when Vladimir Kozlov comes out and assaults The ECW Champion.
Kozlov tied up Matt Hardy in the ropes and started putting the boots to him. He gets in Hardy’s face and yells “you cost me title!” Kozlov leaves as officials assist Matt in getting out of the ring ropes. Matt is lying on the canvas and heaving.
The Great Khali is primping himself in the mirror and gargling mouth wash. The Khali kiss cam is next. Oh joy.
The DX ad from RAW where they shill the Elimination Chamber airs again. I skipped it this time.
The Great Khali, wearing the world’s biggest Santa hat, and Ranjin Singh, wearing an elf cap, make their way to the ring. Which reminds me, I just saw the 2005 remake of “The Longest Yard” yesterday. Khali is great in his role in the film (though, in all fairness, Kevin Nash stole the show).
Anyways, The Kiss Cam has a mistletoe graphic and it starts with the original format of the Kiss Cam. After a few couples kiss, they search for a woman for Khali to kiss. After showing a bunch of women, some attractive, some not so attractive, some old, some yong, Ranjin asks that they stop the music. In the spirit of giving, Ranjin asks for “Santa’s Little Helper.” Eve comes out in a little Mrs. Claus outfit, and Ranjin explains that it’s his gift to The Great Khali. Khali holds up the mistletoe and plants a great big kiss on a very excited Eve.
Coming up next, two more big guys, The Undertaker and The Big Show step into the steel cage!
Wellllllll… Well it’s The Big Show!
Show makes his way out to the cage first. When he gets in, he’s almost tall enough to look over the top of it. The Undertaker takes his sweet ass time getting to the ring, so for the first time tonight, other than commercials, I hit the Fast Forward button.
The Undertaker def. The Big Show
The two big men lock up, and Show uses his power to take an early advantage over the dead man. Rights, lefts, and headbutts are Show’s M.O. He makes no early attempts to get out of the cage, and he goes for a Vader Bomb, but ‘Taker rolls out of the way – but Show still caught him with his lower body. Taker starts to mount a comeback, using the ropes and the cage to his advantage. He went to the well once too often, as Gorilla Monsoon would say, and Show catches him with an elbow. Show throws ‘Taker face first into the cage, and sends us to a…
Show is back to throwing punches when we come back, and once again sends ‘Taker face first into the cage, this time going for a cover, getting a two. Show continues to dominate, taking a moment to smile about his handy work. ‘Taker won’t stay down, though. He starts to battle back against the World’s Largest Athlete. ‘Taker keeps control until he goes for Old-School. Show stops him, and hits a superplex, though the ring didn’t collapse like it did when Show and current UFC Champion Brock Lesnar did a superplex spot a few years back. Anyways, Show keeps control for a bit, knocking ‘Taker down then climbing the ropes. Instead of trying to escape, Show acts like he’s going to go for a top rope move, but ‘Taker sits up and comes after him. The two men fight on the top rope, and ‘Taker wins the battle, sending Big Show crashing to the canvas. Undertaker goes to climb out, but he stops on the top of the cage. He gives the throat-slitting motion, and climbs back down onto the ropes, going for a top-rope legdrop, but Show moves out of the way. Both men get back up around the same time, and ‘Taker counters a chokeslam attempt with a DDT, getting a two count. ‘Taker goes for a chokeslam of his own, but Big Show counters it into a chokeslam of his own. He goes for the cover, and only gets a two count. After a battle of fists, Show hits his knockout punch, but before he can escape, ‘Taker sits up. Show grabs the dead man by the throat, but The Undertaker counters into the Hell’s Gate chokehold. With nowhere to go, Show has no choice but to tap out.
Undertaker poses in the ring as the show goes off the air.
My Thoughts: Ah, the steel cage match. Once the epitome of feud ending matches, now an extremely overused gimmick. Over the course of the last two and a half months, I’ve seen three steel cage matches in WWE alone. It’s bad enough that TNA has a Pay-Per-View that focuses solely on steel cage matches, now the WWE is doing them on a regular basis. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed tonight’s match between the Big Show and The Undertaker. I just don’t want to see another regular steel cage match until the next TNA Lockdown PPV. I won’t complain about a Hell in the Cell match or an Elimination Chamber, I just don’t want to see another normal steel cage match for a while.
Another thing I’ve noticed is that, since the WWE only has a handful of referees who now work all three brands, they’ve been wearing the traditional striped shirts that the RAW referees have been wearing for years. It’s not a huge deal, but it’s another thing that blurs the line of the brand extension. First they started using the same sets for all three brands, and now this. I think it’s better to give each brand it’s own identity, especially ECW, but whatever, just a thought.
Good to see Hurricane Helms back. It’s been way too long, and I’m glad to see him as a face and embracing his WWE legacy as The Hurricane. Will the super-hero return? I hope so!
What did you think of SmackDown? Leave a comment and let me know; and look for a new BWF skin to be available in the next couple of days!
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