WWE Friday Night SmackDown hit the SyFy airwaves last night (Aug. 2, 2013) from Houston, Texas, with a taped show featuring the crowning of the next number one contender to the world heavyweight championship at SummerSlam later on this month.
Click here to read the live blog with full results from the show. That's enough with the potatoes, though, let's get to the meat:
- The trouble with pro wrestling sometimes is that certain characters are just going to rub you the wrong way, or fail miserably to connect with you, or simply do nothing for you at all. Unfortunately, the man WWE has chosen to carry the world heavyweight championship and continually push until he does connect, Alberto Del Rio, is one of those characters, at least for me. I just can't get behind anything he does or says and find almost all of it terribly boring. His work in the ring is fine but leave him alone in the ring with the stick and ask him to make me care about him and I'm ready to see what else is going on with my Friday night.
- To make matters worse, he's entering into a program with Christian, who largely suffers from the same problem Del Rio has: he's a hell of a worker who can give you a great match but despite his forgotten moniker, he's severely lacking charisma. His character hasn't gotten any sort of makeover in years, and there's zero reason to think it's going to anytime soon. Remember when the creative team was told he was high priority and to find something for him sooner rather than later to get him back on television? He did indeed return sooner, but he was the same old guy he had always been. I'll go along with plenty, but I need some sort of progression. Running in place isn't interesting to me.
- Good on whoever decided to have Randy Orton ditch the red briefcase last night. He's the primary guy on the blue brand, it just looks odd to see him carrying around a contract that guarantees a title shot for a belt that almost never appears on SmackDown. Out of sight, out of mind.
- Poor Rob Van Dam. Dude has been absolutely putting in work since returning to WWE and he's probably the most responsible for getting over that stellar triple threat match in last night's main event, but he's already getting forgotten and lost in the shuffle. I suppose that's a role he's best suited for at this point in his career, though, and as long as he's putting on good matches, what do I care?
- Alex Riley wasn't awful on commentary. I still think Colt Cabana deserves a shot at some point, but Riley was okay.
- Damien Sandow needs more of that brute physicality he used during his attack on Cody Rhodes. A scholar with a mean streak? Count me in.
- I NEED FIVE! GIVE ME FIVE!
- CM Punk has gotten into the habit of giving lesser wrestlers outstanding matches on seemingly inconsequential episodes of Monday Night Raw and Friday Night SmackDown. He did it with Darren Young not long ago and last night he made Fandango look like a main event level player, or at least a wrestler who can hang with the big dogs in the yard. I don't know that his character can get there, or if WWE will be willing to book him that far, but at least we know he can put on PPV quality matches with those who hang out at the top of the card.
- I adored WWE trying its best to make me care about Layla turning heel on Kaitlyn. It was so cute, wasn't it? How they lazily put it together, executed it poorly, and then expected us to care about it. I mean, yeah, let's see where it goes, but we're not off to a great start here.
- Brad Madd-ox is still my hero.
This was your typical episode of SmackDown. The wrestling was good but the angles were mediocre to poor.
That's it from me, Cagesiders. Now it's your turn to sound off in the comments section below with all your thoughts on last night's show.