Rewriting the Books - TLC 2012

I'll make this quick because I have like an hour to write this thing. It's the last pay-per-view of the year! And nothing important is happening!

Brief thoughts on Survivor Series 2012:
-Liked the extra elimination tag match. Featured a few of my favorite wrestlers who don't show up a whole lot.
-I don't feel like the Kaitlyn storyline was given a proper conclusion. All of the backstage attack stuff was sort of shoved under the rug so that Eve could continue to pretend to be a good girl, which to me indicates the writers really painted themselves into a corner and decided to abandon the subplot rather than see it through.
-Antonio Cesaro is amazing, easily in my Fave Five currently.
-The ending of Big Show vs. Sheamus started off pretty great, then meandered into dumb pretty quickly. Sheamus acting all concerned that he's murdered someone makes sense given all the trouble he was in for a little while for using the Brogue Kick, and Big Show having the presence of mind to knock him out while he's distracted makes sense to. The change to a disqualification seems a little out of nowhere and doesn't fit at all into Sheamus then completely forgetting his brains have been spilled out of his ear, picking a chair up, and going completely psycho on Big Show's ass with a chair. Too much happened too quickly.
-The main survivor series elimination match had a pretty awesome conclusion. Miz looked great, Del Rio looked great, Orton looked great, Ziggler looked great. If I had written this immediately after seeing it, I'd probably be able to pick at the stupid stuff, but all I can think of now is how Ziggler's the only one of those four who seems like he benefited from it.
-I get the feeling that WWE writers have no idea who The Shield are, except "People to prevent Ryback from getting the WWE Championship." Ambrose, Rollins, and Reigns seem to know who they are. The bookers don't.

Not On The Card
Very little seems at stake in this show. Half the championships aren't being defended and the number-one contenders for two are being decided. In this way it seems like the show is a sort of prequel to the road to Wrestlemania. Which isn't really all that surprising, I mean it's on a really weird space on the calendar where all the Autumn storylines have basically come to a climax for Survivor Series, but there are some left over, and then a bunch of new storylines are supposed to kick off with a bunch of immediate fanfare at the Royal Rumble. So yeah, this PPV is filler.

Youtube Pre-Show Match: Battle Royal To Determine The #1 Contender For The Divas Championship
As I said, I don't think the whole Eve-Kaitlyn storyline was wrapped up properly, but the WWE has clearly moved on from that. It's done, over. And Eve's already defended the championship against Layla several times too. Having a battle royal to determine a #1 contender is cliched even to me because the WWE has clearly been leaning on it heavily in the past year. Just to top things off with a little sexism, the battle royal has a "Santa's Little Helpers" theme. How dignified. With that said, there is a logic to using a battle royal here because there is no clearly established opponent for Eve to square off against anymore now that she's dealt with Kaitlyn and Layla. Rumor has it there were murmurs of an AJ-Eve feud, but I think things would work better for AJ if she tackled one obstacle before moving to the next one, rather than her storyline consisting of like three different ones.

Tables Match To Determine The #1 Contenders For The Tag Team Championship: Rey Mysterio and Sin Cara vs. Team Rhodes Scholars (Cody Rhodes and Damien Sandow)
A quick note: I am so, so happy that Cody has recovered swiftly from injury, even if his mustache looks like the one I tried to grow in high school.

The tag team scene is a bizarre area in the WWE that has become really interesting in the past couple months. Other than Kane and Daniel Bryan, the tag teams have tended to stay out of everyone else's shenanigans. There aren't any convoluted storylines between them, but that doesn't mean they aren't a prominent part of the show. Instead they put on a bunch of matches, allow the audience to become familiar with them, and act like professional athletes constantly competing against each other in an effort to win the top prize in their division. Rhodes and Sandow are absolutely the most entertaining, interesting duo in the division, with only the Prime Time Players being anywhere in the same echelon in the first category. I anticipate this match will start the show, since Mysterio and Cara seem to start every show nowadays, and this match will likely launch the winning team towards their Wrestlemania storyline while the other mucks around and/or breaks up. Oh god. Please let Rhodes Scholars win...

United States Championship Match: Antonio Cesaro (c) vs. R-Truth AND Intercontinental Championship Match: Kofi Kingston (c) vs. Wade Barrett
Cesaro is amazing. Truth is not bringing enough to this feud, but Cesaro is just so entertaining when he gets in the ring and beats the shit out of absolutely anyone he's put against in a new, cool way every single time. The only reason Cesaro should drop the belt in this match is if it's to move him on to bigger and better things. Seriously though it is disappointing that the build-up to this match has been nothing more than Truth and Cesaro competing around each other, through tag matches and commenting on each others' singles matches. Then I guess there was the time that Truth spilled water on Cesaro, but that's about it.

You could say the same thing for Kofi vs. Barrett, but minus the absurdly good matches Cesaro has been having. It's really weird how these two feuds have been so intertwined in the last few weeks, it's almost like Kofi and Truth are still tag team partners. It really seems a little lazy to me.

Chairs Match For The World Heavyweight Championship: Big Show (c) vs. Sheamus
Big Show has really endeared himself to me as he effectively points out everything wrong with Sheamus as a face, but this feud is getting into the same problem that Sheamus-Del Rio did - attempts to escalate it just make it silly. The whole non-contact clause has been stupid. I hope this match ends this once-promising feud before Show decides he has to beat up William Regal anymore. Maybe Ziggler will cash in and we'll have a repeat of last year's TLC. Speaking of which...

Ladder Match For The Smackdown Money In The Bank Contract: Dolph Ziggler vs. John Cena
When this match was first announced, I immediately reacted with "No. No. No god damn it no." However, I have since come to think of the match with a sense of cautious optimism. If Ziggler is going to become World Heavyweight Champion, it'll be beneficial for him to get some wins under his belt first. The Survivor Series win over Orton really helped, but it was the first PPV victory he'd gotten since actually winning the briefcase. If this match results in Ziggler's victory it really benefits his build to becoming champion. It seems kind of ass-backwards, though, since the deck really seems stacked against him, which...isn't that usually how you generate sympathy for a good guy? Ziggler's been saddled with an ugly situation wherein he's at odds with the top superstar in the company, was placed in a match with a ridiculous stipulation for seemingly no reason by the CEO, and his formerly closest ally has abandoned him for the sake of appearing neutral. If Ziggler wins by any method that seems remotely clean, it'll appear like he's overcoming the odds, and the only reason to root against him is because he's acting like a dick while he does it. At this point I don't think I can bring myself to root for any of the characters I'm supposed to relate for according to the labels that they've been given, because all the "good" guys are douchebags and all the "bad" guys are constantly getting the short end of the stick.

Tables, Ladders and Chairs Match: Ryback and Team Hell No (Daniel Bryan and Kane) vs. The Shield (Dean Ambrose, Roman Reigns, and Seth Rollins)

Hey guys, it's a TLC match! Except it's decided by falls, so it's not! God I wish I could give a crap about this match, but the emotional investment I have in it is that attacks by The Shield have forced Bryan and Kane to finally get along. Which, that's great character development, but it was shoved off to the side (meaning it was done on Smackdown) and not focused on at all. The build-up to this match has just been all six men and a bunch of other guys beating the crap out of each other and I have no reason to want one group to triumph over the other group, especially since nothing is at stake. There is literally nothing these guys are fighting for, and no reason to believe that The Shield will go away or stop beating people up if they're defeated this particular time, or to believe that Ryback will stop trying to eat people if he's beat up this particular time.

So yeah, overall the hype machine hasn't had much of an effect on me this time around. On the bright side, not caring at all about this pay-per-view means it can't disappoint me, right?


1 comment:

  1. The only comment I can make is in regards to what you mentioned about all the "good guys" being essentially dickheads and all the "bad guys" getting the short end of the stick. You really couldn't be any more right, especially recently with guys like Sheamus trashing Del Rio's car, Ryback getting a free pass to blatantly assault whoever he wants (including security), and Cena being literally handed a chance at Ziggler's Money in the Bank briefcase for no reason other than for Vinny Mac to fuck with Ziggler for no adequately explained reason.

    And everyone's just supposed to cheer and be happy because Sheamus, Ryback, and Cena are all the good guys. Hell, this mindset was the entire basis of Randy Orton's face turn a while back. It's okay that he's assaulting people from behind, attacking them with weapons, and kicking them in the head with the intention of injuring them seriously. Before it was bad because he was doing it to be mean to the good guys, but now he's doing it to the other guys who are jerks and say mean things and want to beat up the good guys, so yay! It's fucking childish and stupid, and it really makes me believe WWE are just trying to push and push to see just how much almost heel-ish shit they can have their top faces get away with and still have the kiddies cheer, while heels like Ziggler and especially Cesaro actually will win matches pretty clean (when they actually do win).