Well that was a dog's breakfast of a PPV!
I mean, okay, last year I didn't even bother with Armageddon because neither Kane nor 'Taker had matches, but at least Jeff Hardy grabbed the brass ring in what was a hugely popular win.
And coincidentally, while I was at my desk before the PPV started this year, I was listening to Glenn Jacobs' interview with The Sun earlier this year. Let me quote directly from that (italics are mine, for emphasis):
[Question]: "Where are the new stars coming from in the WWE and how are you, the veterans, trying to help them?"
Glenn: "There are guys coming up. You're going to see Dolph Ziggler - Dolph, I think, is doing, you know, really well and there are guys coming up. Ah, I was watching this weekend Ezekiel Jackson on the live events and he's gonna be a player too. And, as you said, Morrison - I mean, he had a match last week with Jeff that was just unbelievable . . . "
[Interviewer}: "It's one of the best that I've seen this year."
Glenn: "Yeah. It's not like you're just gonna throw people out there and you gravitate to 'em. You have to earn their respect, no matter how good you are. And those guys are just in the process of doing that. And once that happens, and once the fans gravitate to you, then they'll be huge stars. So it's gonna happen, it's just we're - as far as those guys go, the younger crowd, we're in a bit of a transitional period, I'd say."
So here you've got a guy who's been around this business for nigh on twenty years (if you count the time he spent in places like Smoky Mountain and other independent feds), a guy with a brain as far as how the business works, how the WWE works, saying essentially that they're trying to develop the new guys in the right way - let them build a base of credibility with the fans first, then give them a push or two, see how they cope with it.
And then Vincent Kennedy fuckin' McMahon, who used to know how this business works, but has obviously gone senile in his advancing years, goes completely against that and shoves both Seamus and Drew McIntyre down our throats because he seems to think they should be "stars".
Drew McIntyre, who got a PPV berth for what? His second match out? At Hell in a Cell. After a few weeks of Vince's frantic shoving him at us, in a "feud" with R-Truth that not even the 85% would buy, it was so lame. And the match actually had people in the audience chanting "Boring, boring!"
Which it was. Because nobody gave a fuck about Drew McIntyre. Hell, we didn't even really give a damn about R-Truth - he wasn't getting any sympathy because nobody understood what the fuck the "feud" was about!
And now, two months later, after a series of meaningless "victories" on SmackDown, and being unceremoniously booted off Team SmackDown because someone in Creative bought a clue that we didn't give a fuck about him, he starts a "feud" with John Morrison.
Okay, so this one at least has a reason behind it - McIntyre thinks he's God's gift cos that senile old bastard signed him and annointed him a "future champion", but Morrison's made the cover of WWE Magazine. Hey, I'll buy that McIntyre's that shallow and egotistical. Not much of a stretch, frankly.
This "feud" is made entertaining only by Morrison, because he really does have the mic skills. And the sense of humour. Plus grace under pressure - he didn't even falter when he waved that bloody sword around on Friday night and cut his own eyebrow open! -snickering-
So that might have worked, if they'd built on it. Drawn it out a bit. But no - Vince has got to have his endless fucking PPVs every three weeks because God forbid he should miss the opportunity to make a buck . . .
Newsflash Vince - there's a finite amount of money out there. You chucking a PPV on every three weeks does not mean people will buy them all. Buy rates are tanking because we're not all millionaires who never have to think if we can afford something - we're trying to live within budgets, because there's this thing called the "global financial crisis" - you might have heard of it? Businesses going bust, folks losing their jobs, everyone except rich old bastards like you are tightening their belts. Or is this why the PPVs are multiplying? You having your own little GFC, huh? . . .
Okay, getting off the soapbox now. Where was I?
Oh yeah - so, because we gotta have a PPV every three weeks, they rush this feud between JoMo and McIntyre and what. The. Fuck? McIntyre wins?
Fail. Utter Fail.
He hasn't got what it takes to hold a fucking belt! Used to be guys got the strap as kind of a reward for doing a good job for the company. Maybe McIntyre's got another job we're not seeing on TV - JoMo alluded to it, in a sneaky "See I'm being PG!" way, when he called him "lady."
And if that wasn't bad enough, then there's Sheamus. The whitest man in creation. Hell, I can't even like him out of red-headed solidarity. (Well, I couldn't -until sam2112 posted those icons . . . damn you, woman! :-p )
And the funny thing is, if they'd pitched him to me right, he'd be just the kind of character I'd probably go for! The man's an utter Celt, which appeals to my deeply Irish soul. He even speaks Gaelic!
But he's not behaving like a Celtic warrior - there's no honour in him. And that does offend me.
Still, I'd be prepared to give him a shot - I mean, I spent a couple of years loathing MVP and now he's one of my new favourites. Ditto Mark Henry. And before anyone accuses me of only liking faces, I even like Orton's character! (The man himself leaves me cold, but he plays a psychopath convincingly!)
Now, it may be that Cena's looking for some time off - I hear he isn't scheduled to be at the Slammys Monday night. I doubt it's a movie - there's few places that would be looking to start shooting right before Christmas. Maybe the man just wants a little holiday - God knows, he's been working like a fiend doing appearances and stuff, as well as the shows.
But they couldn't work out a better scenario for him dropping the belt than making him look like a complete tool in dropping it to a newbie?
I mean, this is Cena, for God's sake! Cena, who took such a beating from Orton at Breaking Point and would not quit. Who never gives up.
"I will not quit. I have tasted victory, I have been stung by defeat, but I will not quit. I have been broke down, knocked out, busted up, busted open but I will not quit. And when it's gut-check time, and your heroes are measured in heart instead of bloodline, guess what, you're in my house because I will not quit! You want a story, here's a story - tonight Broadway Joe is being played by John Cena. I guarantee victory at Breaking Point because I will not quit!"
But I'll take a dive from some n00b, because he's obviously way tougher than Orton, and Trips, and 'Taker, and Edge and Big Show, and all those other guys I've beaten along the way.
Man, you have got to be shitting me, right?
Okay, yes, I'll admit it - I'm a Cena fan. The man's got mad mic skills, and jeez, he makes me laugh. Plus, you got to love him for being such a boy scout - shup, I'm allowed to like boy scouts!
But this isn't about me being one-eyed. It's about the shitty writing that's behind this. Behind almost everything lately. When the WWE can do so much better.
When it has flashes of brilliance - man, I'm loving Batista's heel turn, for example. That promo he did on Friday night, about how he doesn't need anyone else? It all rang true! It fit with past storylines, and yes, I'm aware Dave's got his DVD set out now, so it isn't hurting to sell that.
But he's selling it with conviction! And he's got real heat as a result - not that pseudo-heat that McIntyre or Sheamus has. The half hearted booing and jeering because we don't give a fuck, or because they're going up against a face and would get our disapproval by default.
I'll happily watch an ongoing 'Taker/Batista feud on that basis. 'Taker/Punk on the other hand was . . . well, there was no real motivation until the Montreal screw job. And that panned out pretty quickly.
It's not hard to get heat on a guy going up against 'Taker - I mean, crowds love him, no matter what he does. But real heat - think back to Show vs 'Taker, with Vickie as instigator.
You got Show, who's mostly been a face. Team him up with Vickie and have him take on the Phenom in a doublecross and hey presto! Show started to get real heat, and has turned into one helluva heel.
Hey, lookit that - I seem to have segued off from ranting about TLC to ranting about shitty storylines.
What else pissed me off about TLC? McFool retained - so shrieking and hair pulling is still better than actual wrestling. And making fun of Mickie's weight when she's not overweight - just because McFool's an ironing board with tits, but man, don't get me started on the whole Diva thing. Still, if that's what passes as a heel turn for a Diva, she's got it down pat.
And nice one too, with being family friendly and telling the little girls who watch that they need to be skinny to be beautiful. Ranks right up there with CM Punk being made to look like a nutter when he's promoting a straight edge lifestyle.
-sighs- You know, I'll hang in there, because I've been through these crappy periods before. And eventually they come good again. Swings and roundabouts. But jeez, they make it so hard to stay loyal sometimes. I want so much to like them, the shows. But days like today, I really do wonder if there will come a point where the shit becomes too much and I do walk away.
Man, I hope not.