Oh, good ol' Netflix, you've changed my viewing consumption in ways that I like, and in ways that I'm still not so sure on.
You see, Netflix was the reconciler that brought me and the world of pro wrestling back together again. Since pro wrestling was such a huge part of my childhood, I had kept tabs on wrestling through Wikipedia journeys that would start at Stone Cold and end at Harvey Whippleman. It was Netflix however, that started my viewing back up.
It was a boring, mid-western, winter day and Netflix suggested: The True Story of WrestleMania to me. Ah, what the hell, you can only replay the Resident Evil games so many times, and look at so much porn in a day before ya need something new to entertain ya.
So, I watched and enjoyed.
Then I watched bios on Steamboat, Flair, and the WCW; and enjoyed. For the most part WWE does a wonderful job on their videos and documentaries... so much so, that I became curious about the current product.
I admit I felt a little uneasy, and just odd in general, tuning back in to wrestling. But it kept me watching, and I have been a pretty loyal viewer ever since. But since I've been back, I've noticed some similarities and differences in the wrestlers from the days when I used to watch as compared to the wrestlers of today. Some wrestlers should be elevated, and some shouldn't be on the roster at all.
The very first time I saw Ziggler in action, he reminded me of Mr. Perfect; just the way he sells, and probably the blonde hair, are what drew the comparison for me. He caught my eye right away and intrigued me, having only watched for a few weeks, I could see his departure from Jack Swagger would soon be taking place. He's stepped up lately, and would have to be considered the break out star of the last few months.
Once again, a throwback of sorts, reminds me of heels from the eighties. The notion of a guy wanting to bring sophistication, intelligence, and class to the world of pro wrestling is simple, but hilarious. He is the guy to pull it off too, he has the charisma, attitude, and face for the job. He's almost elevated to the point where jobbing isn't going to effect his overall character, he's already pretty over.
It took a heel turn for me to realize how good this guy was. I was being told over and over again how great he was, and although he put on good matches, I just didn't see it. His face persona was somewhat stale, and with the material he had to work with, he didn't have much of a choice. The last few months though, he has been absolutely brilliant on the stick, and honestly, it's been some of the best mic work I've heard since the Austin/Rock promos of the past.
Honorable Mention: Antonio Cesaro
I can't stand when a guy sucks, shows that he sucks, and continues to get a push for various backstage reasons. Honestly, I thought he was a gimmick character the first few times I saw him on Raw. If I was a kid, I honestly wouldn't like the dude either -- purely based on his extreme whiteness. I just don't see anything that is appealing about Sheamus, he isn't really all that great in the ring, on the mic, and doesn't make any match better because he's in it. People say he's the Irish Cena, but I give Cena way more credit than Sheamus. At least he had some sort of good work in the past, before he was given a huge push. To me, he is in a long line of guys like Lex Luger and Diesel, who were big physically, never got completely over, and for whatever reason, always stayed in the headline picture.
One of the first segments to make me ask myself, "Was coming back to wrestling the right move?" was Brodus Clay dancing in the ring for a minute before his match started. I wasn't sure if the guy was new, or if that was his established gimmick; but what I did know, is that there was a fat, jowly, mo-hawked dude in a leotard on my television. This was definitely something that would make me immediately regret my decision, until I found out he was just getting started, and they were merely trying him out. Still, it was bad, really bad. If you want to have him dance after he wins, okay, fine, but the fact that he would do a minute intro, and then reveal his hideous one-piece woman's swimsuit of an attire, was nearly enough to make me stop watching all together. Luckily, I got past the train wreck that was Brodus Clay's first few appearances.
I give the dude props, he tries really hard. The problem is he is really bad, even when he tries hard. I think he's pretty good at the backstage interview role, but nowhere close to being ready to do play-by-play for WWE's second biggest weekly show. JBL does a great job of trolling him, but Josh is so oblivious that it just makes JBL's job even harder. I can understand not knowing references like Harpo Marx, but not knowing Freddie Mercury? Come on. As silly as it sounds, a broadcaster loses a little credibility when they don't know a simple fact like that. I give him about two more months on SmackDown before another play-by-play guy is brought in.
Honorable Mention: Sin Cara
Watching him wrestle is nothing but ugly, and it makes me cringe, every time.
Well there ya have it, my worthless opinions about performers over the past year. I hope this year is slightly better than last. But I must admit I've enjoyed my return to WWE much more than I initially thought I would, and am legitimately excited for January through April.
Thanks to this site a bunch for making the return easier, it's interesting, and funny to see you folks' reactions to certain things.
Editor's Note: This FanPost has been mildly edited for promotion to the front page and various sections within Cageside Seats for your enjoyment, Cagesiders!
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