Friday, July 8, 2016

Smackdown: Friendship is Magic

Ambrose wasn't being a very good friend to Jey Uso by harassing Seth Rollins like this
Photo Credit: WWE.com
First of all, I hope you all enjoyed our time away from Jerry Lawler (I sure as hell did) because he was back this week, contributing nothing of value, as usual. On another note, it looks like the start-of-show talking heads are going to be a thing now, and personally I like them as a quick way to let us know what we'll be in for during the show. They're short and snappy and take place in various locations, meaning that we're not stuck watching someone talk for 20 minutes in the middle of the ring at the start of every show in order to set up a match.

HOWEVER...

Worst Friend – Dean Ambrose
What did we get after quickly establishing Chris Jericho vs. Sami Zayn for the main event and Seth Rollins vs. Jey Uso right away? Dean Ambrose standing in the middle of the ring talking aimlessly. Dean Ambrose is rapidly reaching Dolph Ziggler levels of ruining things in that he keeps inserting himself into other people's business and being super impressed with himself. He designated himself the special guest ring announcer and proceeded to interrupt the match throughout its duration, drawing attention to himself and generally acting like an asshole.

Quite apart from harassing poor, beleaguered Seth Rollins, it was also a pretty shitty thing to do to Jey Uso. Unless Uso is unable to hear while he wrestles, he would have been constantly distracted, too, and you'd think, given their shared connection through Roman Reigns, Ambrose would have been a little bit more considerate of him. Then there was the inconvenience to me, the person watching. According to Mauro Ranallo, Rollins and Uso hadn't faced each other one-on-one in three years, so this was a relatively fresh match-up that I was interested in watching without the Dean Ambrose Comedy Hour getting in the way. In the end Rollins managed to win anyway, so who came out looking like the better man, here?

Also, my theory about Rollins just wanting to have friends still stands. I'm convinced that when he was ragging Uso about his family it was because he was secretly jealous that he's driven away everyone close to him because of his terrible choices and now has no one to be in his corner, while the man who WAS in corner has turned into an attention-seeking ham.

Best Friend to America – Zack Ryder
Apparently Zack Ryder defending America against Sheamus was so great on Raw that it needed to happen again on Smackdown. Yeah! Take that, Not America as represented by Sheamus! Have we all learned a valuable lesson about not being American now? Can poor Sheamus catch a break? Man, non-American wrestlers must just dread the Fourth of July. I know I do.

Anyway, Ryder is riding his “wave of momentum” consisting of exactly two wins, one of which involved an assist from Big Show, into challenging Rusev for the United States Championship, and I can't wait to see Rusev CRUSH his hopes and dreams.

Best Friends – The Club
I've mocked the Club in the past, but I have to say that I'm really starting to love them. They're three giant dorks who love each other and beating up John Cena in equal measure. How can I not get behind that? Plus, AJ Styles listens so attentively to what Gallows and Anderson are saying in all of their talky bits. Seriously, watch him next time. That is some ACTIVE LISTENING because he cares SO MUCH about what they say. Cena hating besties 4 lyfe.

The Club were even kind enough to deliver my “don't get involved with John Cena's shit” lecture to Enzo Amore and Big Cass, who have stepped right into the Usos' shoes (I have to praise the Usos for finally listening to me and stepping away. Four for you, the Usos. You go, the Usos). Styles spelled out that Cena wasn't anywhere near his newest little buddies, leaving them open to attack. And, of course, Cena was nowhere to be found as Amore lost a match to Styles. I enjoyed the match, but here's hoping the Club can carry out their friendship hobby of beating up John Cena on Cena himself and not his latest temporary pals in the future.

Mysteriously Solo Friend – Kalisto
Seriously, Kalisto and Sin Cara are hardly ever together unless they have an actual tag match, and it's weird. And Kalisto is the one who suffers for it, since without the support of having someone in his corner he tends to lose, as he did to the Miz.

Also, I see you letting Kalisto taking the fall for throwing potato salad at Maryse, Dolph Ziggler. Let it be known that dirtbag Dolph Ziggler wants everyone to know that he's ready for a fight ALL THE TIME...except when it comes to paying for the slinging of summertime side dishes.

Two Friendship Theories Featuring Chris Jericho, Sami Zayn, and Kevin Owens
Smackdown's main event took to heart my advice last week that if you've got Canadians on hand you should use them, so this week we got Sami Zayn against Chris Jericho with Kevin Owens sitting on commentary. One of the contributing factors to the match was Jericho's $750 scarf ~mysteriously~ going missing only to be spotted being worn by Owens, who claimed to have found it lying around.

Now, either:

(a) Owens swiped the scarf because he feels bad about having attacked Jericho during their pre-Money in the Bank match and misses him, so he wanted it both as a memento and as a way to start a conversation with Jericho, which of course quickly devolved into quibbling over quarters and Jolly Ranchers because these two men are the most cantankerous Canadians who ever lived, OR

(b) Owens and Zayn have already reconciled behind the scenes due to a shared desire to take Chris Jericho down a peg and they conspired together to take the scarf and drive Jericho crazy.

I admit I'd prefer the second theory to be true, but it was kind of disproved by Owens delivering a vicious beatdown to Zayn after Jericho had already taken him out in reaction to losing the match. Maybe they're just really dedicated to keeping up the show of enmity until the optimal moment. Either way, Canadians fighting over accessories is precisely the kind of content I want to see. Keep it up, Smackdown.

And with that I'm off on vacation for the next three weeks. I sure hope nothing important happens while I'm away...