Thursday, October 22, 2015

Best Coast Bias: Increasing The AC

Seriously, just shake her hand before the match
Photo Credit:
It was probably unintentional.

Hell, it's likely it was probably unintentional.

Only a tinfoil hatted conspiracy theorist could find some bizarro connective thread to construct a through line with.

But what the hell, let's try it out since this idea's more compelling by 88 ghz/time period than the penultimate October hour that came out of Full Sail: to commemorate the unofficial Back To The Future day, WWE decided to celebrate it by having NXT do some stuff you've seen before sandwiched around an Apollo Crews video package.

Want to see Baron Corbin and Rhyno main event and have it end in two segments with the End of Days? Done. Want to see the Australian second wave of the hashtag steph revolution look good before riding the L? Check. Want to see Enzo Amore and Big Cass fire up the crowd and end up ultimately laid out? Woo woo woo, you know--sorry, boroughs almost crossed the streams there.

About the only thing of note that dared stray from the blinking 12 am VCR clock that this program turned out to be was the unhyped and well-received debut of James Storm. But he beat Danny Birch, probably the lowest rung on NXT's ladder. Boss Man Holzerman has two pinfall victories over Birch this year, and his daughter checked in with one. Buddy went to a double countout with him back in the spring. (Ed. Note: Both my pinfall victories were CLEAN AS A WHISTLE, and don’t let anyone tell you that I had assistance from the Invincible Squirrel Girl. – TH)

Oh, this isn't to say that there weren't individual moments that were fun, to be sure. The welp-you're-gonna-die-and-you-deserve-it-now murmur of disapproval that went through the crowd when Billie Kay wouldn't adhere to the Code of Honor. Corbin reversing a Gore attempt into the End of Days, even if it took almost 15 minutes to get to that obvious conclusion. Trying to figure out if Eva Marie blatantly reading off of cue cards in her video bonjour from "Paris" is part of the character at this point, or if she did 20 takes and that was the best one. The drumroll Blake and Murphy banged against the apron -- hey, didn't you guys used to wrestle? -- as Alexa Bliss went up for and then connected with the Sparkle Splash.

But the ratio of about twenty seconds to an hour makes Lincoln Chafee's threat to HRC look credible, and in fact the entire show could be disposed of without a look back at the recycle bin if it wasn't for the first part of A Very Special Look At Apollo Crews, who gets his shot at Finn Bálor and the Big X in a fortnight. While it's still weird to see EVOLVE highlights running unabated on WWE programming or seeing the former Mr. Nation proclaiming his unique hybrid set as TOO EASY! therein, we started to learn on what made him tick and helped get him here. Like a lot of the audience he's playing to and for, his beginnings as a fan stemmed from his being a child of divorce and wanting to spend time with his dad as he enjoyed Monday Night RAW.

The main difference is that with his dad a diplomat, he spent most of this time in Uganda with occasional summer visits to the ATL to visit his mom and sister as opposed to Des Moines, Norfolk, Colorado Springs, or the like. When he talked about his mom working three jobs and his pouting and complaining getting him the wrestling belt(s) that he wanted, then teared up and eventually cried about it before laughing about the fact that he was crying about, you saw his white hatted ceiling--some of the "Hey! That's me!" broad strokes he's kept going into the fall and into his number one contendership seem to be more contrived when he's not debuting in front of 17k on his birthday; yet this is somebody who at heart grew up a fan and can simultaneously laugh at what a little shit he was while at the same time remembering the sacrifices his mother made to make him happy moves him to tears. Whereas Finn's modifications and different permutations seem to be an artist trying out different disciples to see what plays best in the most markets at once, Crews' duality comes from being bratty enough to still have his childish impulses playing out (TOO EASY!, remember) while at the same time having the almost laughable athleticism to make his motivations come true and get a championship belt of his own without begging his mom to buy it for him.

That and that alone was the saving grace of the program. As for the rest? Feh, meh, beh--the law firm of who cares that'll settle for whatever, because, you know, stuff.

(Also not pictured this week: Braden Walker.)