Wednesday, February 4, 2015

I Listen So You Don't Have To: Cheap Heat Feb. 3

A healthy dose of talk about Reigns' Rumble win vis a vis the Super Bowl is on Cheap Heat this week
Photo Credit:
If you're new, here's the rundown: I listen to a handful of wrestling podcasts each week. Too many, probably, though certainly not all of them. In the interest of saving you time — in case you have the restraint to skip certain episodes — the plan is to give the bare bones of a given show and let you decide if it’s worth investing the time to hear the whole thing. There are better wrestling podcasts out there, of course, but these are the ones in my regular rotation that I feel best fit the category of hit or miss. If I can save other folks some time, I'm happy to do so.

Show: Cheap Heat
Episode: Feb. 3, 2015
Run Time: 1:02:30
Guest: None

Summary: Your hosts David Shoemaker and Peter Rosenberg are back in studio this week, recording again on a Tuesday morning. They talk about the special live Smackdown and a little bit about Triple H’s appearance on Steve Austin’s podcast before breaking down the Groundhog Day RAW, including focus on Cody Rhodes and the John Cena/Rusev story as well as pondering a Bray Wyatt/Bo Dallas pairing. Listener email leads to discussion of WrestleMania plans, a Dolph Ziggler/Bayley pairing and a contrasting of Roman Reigns winning the Royal Rumble vs. Seattle’s Super Bowl endgame play calling.

Quote of the week: Shoemaker on the Reigns/Daniel Bryan setup: “At a bare minimum you can say, we can all agree that things look a lot sunnier after last night, even if all it is is a head fake to have (Brock) Lesnar and Reigns at WrestleMania.”

Why you should listen: I’ve long complained about the Cheap Heat episodes that amount to little more than an hourlong RAW recap released Thursday or Friday. If you want to hear the same takes in a much more fresh fashion, you’ll be happy with the new schedule. Both guys have an ability to understand the complaints they hear fans express while also understanding why it’s impossible to always cater to those concerns. And in this episode, they reveal an understanding of and appreciation for the good work of Rhodes and Rusev, as well as Cesaro and Tyson Kidd.

Why you should skip it: The biggest reason to pass is the icky feeling that comes from listening to Rosenberg lust after Stephanie McMahon in a manner going far beyond complimenting someone who knows how to maintain and improve her appearance. Don’t come in hopes of hearing any substantive analysis of the Steve Austin/Triple H podcast — it’s not clear either host listened to the full interview — and there is a certain segment of fan who will hear this episode and think it’s little more than he WWE corporate line about how everything was fixed with one solid RAW eight weeks before WrestleMania.

Final thoughts: Episodes like this belong on Tuesday. There’s a reason you don’t get fresh NFL “week in review” columns posting before Wednesday’s afternoon drive. That said, I’m leaning toward suggesting it was still a little light on the kind of perspective we should expect from professionals. YouTube is littered with nobodies explaining what they loved and hated on any given WWE show, a Grantland product needs to offer something unique befitting the experience of the content creator. Shoemaker almost never fails to deliver in his written work, but the podcast, either as a medium or on account of his partner, doesn’t always afford him the opportunity to convey those talents.