Thursday, October 16, 2014

Best Coast Bias: We HOSS FIGHT On Tuesday Nights

A welcome renewal of hostilities
Photo Credit:
Mae West may've once said too much of a good thing is wonderful, but she wasn't trying to book the biggest professional wrestling game in town in the 21st century, either.

At times it feels like WWE's roster is like the one rich kid in school growing up who not only had all the toys you wanted but some stuff you'd never even heard of that you didn't realize would complete your first grade life until the little sawed off brought it to Show and Tell and left chunks of your brain matter all over the desk. While this is generally great for John Cena and anybody else who ends up either in or on the front lines against the Authority, there's a lot to be desired once the absolute top shelf has been cleared.

Ergo, Main Event. Despite it being a couple of weeks early, this version of WWEME featured not only costumes but a clutch of performers proving they didn't need a belt or to stand across the ring from some "some of these people like me and some of these people don't but that's what they pay for JACK" patter--all they needed was an opportunity at that sweet narcotic known as television time, whether it be on a Tuesday or no.

While there's plenty to talk about, by Wrestling Blog bylaws if this BCB doesn't start with the hoss fight that actually main evented then there will be a swift dismissal and exile to Google Plus. (Ed. Note - The punishment is actually banishment to Ello, which is far worse.) So let's begin at the end, with Rusev and Big E. resuscitating their brief -- well, rivalry isn't the right word. In rivalries, both sides generally win at some point. Let's go with contretemps. While Big E.'s been on the WWE-endorsed corner of the web hanging out with his Super Athletic Friends Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods, this felt like the first time in quite some that he got some attention as an in-ring performer allowed to show why he became so beloved down Full Sail way and got quite the criminally underrated run as Intercontinental Champion earlier in the year. By the end of the first segger he was garnering Big E chants, probably because he proved out of the gate (as seen above) he could match power and speed with Rusev just as much as anyone else who's gotten in the ring against the Bulgarian expat. It's a difficult thing to pull off a backbreaker against someone of Rusev's carriage or stand in the ring throwing bombs for half a minute and giving just as good as you get against him unless you're the former NXT Champion.

The tide of the match turned when Rusev managed to throw the former Langston into the barrier before giving him a vicious fallaway slam on the floor. Rusev varied up his offense by locking down a couple of front chanceries, using the second one to capitalize on a corner charge that failed Big, but the children kept chanting for him and he kept coming on strong and even managed to get off a couple of belly-to-belly suplexes. But remember: this isn't really a rivalry, so Rusev managed to get up when the Big 747 splash was imminent and snap off a superkick before putting him in the Accolade and eventually making him tap out. Alternating celebrating with selling his back is one of the little things that lead to a big thing like being pretty much undefeated all year long in the case of Mr. Lana and it's deserved. Let us also note while we're in the neighborhood that given something as simple as time even in a losing effort Big E is a superlative talent who's ceiling hasn't even come close to being scratched yet.

Speaking of which, let's go forward by going back to the start of the show. Oh, Michael Mizanin. So perfectly smug, delusional, and eminently punchable. This is probably going to end up being the third iteration of a well-worn 21st century WWE trope: guy is forced to hang out with the Miz for more than 45 seconds in a non-wrestling capacity and suddenly a light goes on over his head and it says "punch this taint-sniffer in the face until security intervenes". The first one gave us Daniel Bryan, bringer of joy, light, and knees to the face. The second one gave us Alex Riley, who had a really awesome theme. This time it gives us Damien Sandow, finally alighting upon a home in his epic Steveian closet of dopplegangery by being a D-lister to a C-lister. It took a while, but the crowd seems to be catching on and getting behind him. It even continued on another episode of MizTV, as Miz did the whole "let me bring my future opponent out here" spiel only to unveil Sandowmus in a fake dyed orange beard and eyebrows and a possibly a Beaker wig or a Shamwow. Sandowmus only upped the cartoon hearts by hurting himself when he pounded against his own chest before speaking in a so-horrible-you-can't-even-tell-what-country-he's-supposed-to-be-from accent and sneaking in a cheap pop for himself by being an awesome stunt double; his boss told him not to improv.

All this fauxness was destined to draw out the real thing, so once the US Champion arrived Sandow--stood next to Sheamus and kept acting like him. The moment Sheamus stopped talking to look at him, D immediately looked to his left as if there was someone he was shutting up. While Miz was busy being aggravating in response to Sheamus' Paler Cena antics, the former World Champion and former Intellectual Savior continued the stop-and-go bit successfully three more random times. If you think this sort of thing is easy, you try it. Ask the Roots. Ask James Brown's old band members. It was the rarest of birds: WWE comedy that would actually draw genuine laughter out of the viewer. Of course, that moment ended when Sheamus said he was into the homage and since Shamien Mizdowus failed to leave the ring he got clotheslined and Brogue Kicked. See, Miz, it's slapstick humor. SLAPstick. You see? Most interestingly, the crowd gave the sudden clothesline a mixed reaction, then when he posed in the ring with the genuine artifact Championship and not the replica totem Team Hollywood had been toting he got a reaction, but it wasn't the reaction he got for coming out. It can be argued elsewhere the fans are the heels, but at least this crowd on this night was pro both Sheamus and Sandow, and the former laying out the latter opened up a humane schism that left the only hated man the one who it should be: The Miz.

The rest of the show wasn't much, to be honest: Cesaro took a bit too long to Neutralize Justin Gabriel in a showcase, and Tyson Kidd's myopicness about his significant other led him to lose to R-Truth of all people. But sometimes when the bread is fine brioche fresh out of the oven, it's okay if the meat isn't filet mignon.

We'll know they're onto us if we start seeing #FreeSandow, though.