I don't know what's going on backstage, but these folks need to get on the same page.
Monday Night RAW saw the return of Daniel Bryan, exactly one week after he was savagely beaten and abducted by the Wyatt family during a live broadcast. I mean that in a literal sense, as Erick Rowan scooped up his lifeless body and carried it off screen (video).
Last night, he came back.
How and when he escaped seems to be a point of confusion among the talent. WWE CEO Triple H said he was found in a ditch during an interview on Wednesday, though CM Punk said he hadn't yet been found when Smackdown! aired last Friday.
So what was the point of him being kidnapped?
There wasn't one. Or if there was, it was quickly abandoned during one of the many re-writes that occur on the fly, for reasons about as clear as the those behind Bryan's abduction. If it was mind games and nothing else, perhaps a promo from Bray Wyatt indicating as such would have been nice.
Something to the effect of, "We kidnapped you just to prove we could."
It's dumb, but it sure beats the one we got, which was, "He's safe and will come back a monster," neither of which was true and caused Wyatt to go from "Eater of Worlds" to eater of words. With all the talent WWE has in its production crew, we could have at least gotten one of those "Man in the Trunk" videos like they used to do on Jackass.
Imagine footage of a naked and gagged Bryan escaping from Rowan's trunk at a nearby gas station?
It would be equal parts hilarious and disturbing, but it at least plays fair with the viewer. And that's really what this is all about, playing fair. I don't like to criticize storylines when they don't go my way, because each one represents a unique vision from someone in Creative.
Truth be told, I don't have to like them, but I should at least be able to follow them.
"We changed our minds" should not be considered resolution and shows contempt for the audience, who should be expected to just get over it when Creative mails it in -- or worse -- is forced to abandon ship when the boss demands a different direction.
Especially when it requires minimal effort.
D-Bry could have played the "found in a ditch angle" if he came back and the announcers were remarking how something had changed in Bryan's demeanor. Not changed like Kane, who came back in a suit and tie, but something more subtle and sinister, which would play into the cult-like angle the appearance of the Wyatt family suggests.
Instead, he just woke up in a ditch and texted Nikki Bella: "Hey, can I get a ride home?"
Then, later in the broadcast, history repeated itself, as Big Show waltzed back down to the ring after being ruled medically unfit to compete due to "head trauma," which was the result of a concussion sustained by way of Randy Orton's punt at Survivor Series.
I guess it wasn't that bad after all, despite what WWE.com was telling us.
Further complicating the matter is that Creative is arbitrary in its application of time off as it relates to this specific type of injury. Remember how much they were milking it earlier this year when Triple H was on the receiving end? Or how Dolph Ziggler was relegated to the sidelines for what seemed like forever?
When you mix fact with fiction, you have to stay consistent.
Otherwise, the next time someone is ruled out with head trauma, they're going to look like a wimp, because Big Show came back in a week. Does he have the heart of a lion? Faster recuperating powers? No, he's simply the beneficiary of storylines that are stitched together like Frankenstein's monster.
And WWE wonders why fans are storming the castle with pitchforks and torches.