Monday, December 7, 2015

Smackdown: Friendship is Magic

Trouble amongst friends again?
Photo Credit:
Should Be Friends – Neville and the Miz
They teased Miz taking Neville under his wing and while the reference they used was Daniel Bryan, I'd really, really like to see Damien Sandow return as a result. Maybe he could pop up to warn Neville or feud with him. I don't care. It's a crime that Sandow has been off my TV for so long, and Neville needs something to do, since every other potential storyline he's been involved in has been pretty instantly aborted. His match against Tyler Breeze was fine, but Neville could have been anyone, as the match was just furthering Breeze's angle with Dolph Ziggler (who managed to not be insufferable on guest commentary). Neville needs something of his own, and the Miz is so good at being awful that everyone who associates with him is instantly elevated.

Impending Friendship Break-Up – Becky Lynch and Charlotte
After Charlotte cost Becky Lynch her match against Brie Bella, Lynch denied the pinky swear. This can only mean that an official breach is imminent. I'm liking Lynch as our plucky protagonist and the only likeable person in the women's division. I mean, I love Team BAD, but they're not being positioned as people to root for, whereas Lynch clearly is. I also don't want Lynch to look like a fool and keep giving Charlotte opportunities to sabotage her in the name of misplaced friendship. Here's hoping this actually goes somewhere and we're spared listening to Brie Bella try to pronounce words (“gullible” = “golble” apparently).

Better Friends – The New Day
The Usos and Dean Ambrose teamed up to face the New Day in order to determine whether Roman Reigns could have the assistance of his allies during his main event match. The New Day came out on top, though it wasn't for lack of effort on the other team's side. It's just that nothing can beat the power of positivity and friendship. I know the whole thing was engineered to stack the odds against Reigns, but I do like the idea that, though Reigns may count both the Usos and Ambrose as his family, they aren't as close to each other, and it's that lack of an extra layer of communication and instinct that puts teams like the New Day on top. The Usos may be a great tag team, but add a third and they won't be as effective. Meanwhile, the New Day are on top of EVERYTHING. Big E got knocked out of the ring and Xavier Woods immediately helped him get back in while Kofi Kingston was ready to take the tag; one of the Usos got knocked out and no one did anything. The match ended with Kingston throwing himself in harm's way to both prevent Jimmy Uso from hitting Woods and cause him to hurt his already injured knee. Kingston himself took some damage, but it enabled Woods to make the pin. That's true friendship.

Friends Returning to Form – The Wyatt Family
I feel like I should just started dedicating an entire segment to how effective the Wyatt “pose over a prone body” thing is from week to week. This week it was actually intimidating and didn't leave me in despair at their ever being taken seriously again. If WWE is going to insist on running out more and more old dudes against the Wyatts, at least keep also giving me Bray Wyatt wrecking them and proving why he's the bayou boss I know and love. Wyatt just ripped through D-Von Dudley, and when Bubba Ray and Tommy Dreamer brought out kendo sticks after the match I was already groaning because I'm really supposed to believe a stick is going to faze a dude like Braun Strowman? It turns out that, nope, I'm not: seeing Strowman snatch and snap the stick and then squeeze Dudley into submission was such a relief. I doubt that this momentum will last, but it was a nice change of pace this week.

Best Friends – The League of Nations
I have a soft spot for all four guys in the League of Nations, so I'm happy to see them together being best friends. They're so supportive and affectionate with each other, and I'm sure they'll be an effective force for a long, long time, just like the historical League of Nations. Oh, wait...

I mean, they were pretty ineffective on Smackdown. Four-on-one and they couldn't win? Poor Barrett got himself kicked out (and the rest of the league didn't even get mad at him because they're such good friends! That and they probably knew exactly what they were getting with King Barrett the Hapless) and all three of the remaining team mates managed to get counted out. That's quite a feat of failure. Still, more friendship is always a good thing. Roman Reigns may be good at strategically rolling back into the ring at the right time, but has he ever been hugged by a burly Bulgarian BFF? I think not.