Friday, August 21, 2015

Dispatches from the Lake: The Lady’s Guide to Surviving SummerSlam

Will Undertaker kick the crowd in the dick like he did Lesnar Sunday?
Photo Credit:
Hi all my buddies! Even though SummerSlam is the fourth wrestling event I’m most excited for in the coming month, I figured I would provide you, gentle reader, with some helpful tips on how to survive this four hour behemoth. Hopefully, we’ll get some quality matches and WWE will start tilling the earth to lay the seeds for WrestleMania 32.

As always, the Golden Rule is in effect. DON’T WATCH ALONE. And host Jon Stewart doesn’t count as a plus one. If you don’t have anyone to watch with, and you’re in the Chicago-land area, head over to the Squared Circle. If you live in the horrific wasteland that isn’t Chicago, drag a non-wrestling friend over, stuff them with pizza, beer and/or sugary soft drinks, and set them down in front of the television so you can bounce your snarky comments off them. They’ll look on, confused as hell, but you’ll have a good time. And in the end, that’s all that matters.

Dolph Ziggler (with Lana) vs Rusev (with Summer Rae)

The best part of this feud is that Bulgarian flag with Rusev’s face on it. The rest is just kind of garbage. These two will put on a good show, but unless it ends with Rusev and Lana making out atop the charred corpses of Ziggler and Rae, was it worth it?

Survival Tip: Discuss how Rusev will destroy Ziggler should he get too handsy with real life main squeeze Lana.

Team Bella vs Team BAD vs Team PCB

I refer you to my article from earlier this week regarding the state of the women’s division on the main roster. This should be a three-way for the title or a match to decide the number one contender for said title. Hopefully, the women will get ample time to show their stuff. Which on a four hour show is a stupid worry to have, but this is WWE, so who the hell knows.

Survival Tip: Come up with a new name for Team PCB that isn't already used by a pornography outfit.

 Kevin Owens vs Cesaro

The battle of "What Do We Do With These Guys Now?" While I think that Owens has weathered that post-rapadoo malaise that affects so many wrestlers, there’s always that lingering concern. Especially when he’s going against someone that the WWE has no idea what to do with, but is beloved by all. I still don’t understand how Cesaro was mishandled after WrestleMania 30. It vexes me to this day.

Survival Tip: Imagine we live on a just and balanced world. Then, imagine what would happen if Kevin Dunn called Owens fat to his face on the street.

Stephen Amell and Neville vs Stardust and the Cosmic King

The Cosmic King is Barrett's new name. I don't care what anyone says.

Poor Neville. I mean, on one hand, he’s on the main card at SummerSlam, but on the other, he’s an afterthought here. I won’t be able to stop admiring Barrett’s bitchin’ new cape. Could end up being a surprisingly fun match. Amell might have some moves in him.

Survival Tip: Read some of the old Neal Adams Green Arrow/Green Lantern comics, and dream of a world where that Green Lantern movie from 2011 didn’t suck.

Prime Time Players vs Los Matadores vs Lucha Dragons vs New Day

This is could end up collapsing into a clusterfuck, but damn, I enjoy watching Titus O’Neil hucking people all over the ring. I’d like to see the Lucha Dragons turn in a must see performance here. They’ve been too quiet since they made their debut on the main roster. I need them to make a little noise.

Survival Tip: Peruse the videos in Xavier Woods’ youtube channel, UpUpDownDown. Gamer Gauntlet and the punishments the losers must endure is especially great.

Bray Wyatt and Luke Harper vs Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose

While I’m sure this is going to be a fun match, I can’t help but look at these guys and pine for the trios days. I’d watch for possible shenanigans here. We haven’t seen Erik Rowan in a bit because he's hurt, so someone is on call for a potential run in. The more followers Wyatt has, the better. Can’t be a cult leader without a cult, right?

Survival Tip: Discuss how wrong the writer is in all her predictions. Remember when she said that Reigns would win the title at WrestleMania and the Money in the Bank briefcase at that special event? God, she’s the worst.

Ryback vs Big Show vs The Miz

Ah, the bathroom break portion of our show.

Big Show is done after this match, right? He’s just going to go away for a minute to wherever Kane is. And good. I really don’t need to see him anymore. He adds nothing. The Miz should be someone’s mouth piece, and The Ryback, while vaguely entertaining, will eventually fall victim to the curse of the Intercontinental Title.

Survival Tip: Didn’t Mad Max: Fury Road come out on digital this week? Flip over to that and stay there until you hear any other wrestler’s theme but Randy Orton’s or Sheamus’.

Randy Orton vs Sheamus

John Cena vs Seth Rollins

It’s tempting to call Cena winning the title here, but as little faith as I have in WWE’s creative team, I don’t think they are going to put both belts on him. If they do, then all that good work he did with the United States Championship is for nothing, and we’ll all be wishing we lived in an alternate universe where Owens’ won that belt.

That said, Rollins and Cena jive pretty well together, and so the meat of the match should be solid. There’s a high probability for shenanigans here too. Any time you’ve got belt versus belt, a disqualification finish is always in play. I’m pretty sure everyone else has forgotten that Sheamus is holding the Money in the Bank briefcase right now, so I think the chances of him cashing in are slim. WrestleMania ended with a cash in, and I doubt they’d do that again so soon. Look for some combination of a returning J & J Security, the Authority, or Kane to screw with this match.

Survival Tip: Try to hold on to all that good will Cena built up with his United States Championship defenses. See how long you can keep positive until you turn into a raving rage monster when Cena kicks out of the fifth Phoenix Splash Rollins hits him with.

Brock Lesnar (with Paul Heyman) vs The Undertaker

Meah. It’s hard to be excited about this when you know how WWE’s booking is going to shake out. There’s no way Undertaker doesn’t get his win back. I say as someone who is usually 100% wrong in her predictions. The way I see it shaking out is Taker getting the win, and Lesnar challenging him to a match at WrestleMania 32 with Taker’s career on the line. It seems like the most logical way to proceed, even though the specter of "Stone Cold" Steve Austin looms large over Arlington.

If Taker is going to win, I need him to stick around for a minute and reform the Ministry of Darkness for old time’s sake. That theme is the best Taker theme, and I will fight anyone to the DEATH who disagrees.

Survival Tip: Keep an eye on Heyman. That man is a .gif fest during these matches.

And that’s the guide, folks. Just try not to compare the show to the taut two hours of delight that NXT will no doubt provide the night before. Trust me, you’ll enjoy the show more if you don’t.