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Charlotte brought her entitlement to SmackDown, and it’ll cost her

Wednesday’s Rude Awakening looks at Charlotte’s SmackDown debut, big plans for Big Banter, and the passing of Rosey.

We publish a whole lot of content here at Cageside Seats. We’re also [looks around and whispers so the bosses can’t hear] not the only place producing wrestling content on the internet. So, as a service to you on the weekdays, we’ll be producing a wrestling newsletter, "Rude Awakening." Well, it will be a newsletter eventually: for now, it’ll just be part of your experience here at Cageside, collecting the news, recaps, and social moments from the greater wrestling universe daily so you won’t fall behind, with a newsletter format to come.

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Charlotte Flair’s greatest strengths as a character are her entitlement and her ability to back it up in the ring. She might feel like she deserves everything in the world just for existing, but when an obstacle is put in front of her, she tends to overcome it. Charlotte isn’t necessarily a heel because she’ll occasionally cheat or bend the rules: she’s a heel because she’s a jerk who can’t stop throwing her greatness in everyone’s face. That tendency reared its head on her first speaking segment on SmackDown Live since the Superstar Shakeup, when Charlotte wanted to know what the holdup was in getting her a shot at the SmackDown Women’s Championship.

While Charlotte gets her title shot next week and earned it by defeating Naomi in a one-on-one matchup — a matchup she was given thanks to her demanding one in the middle of the ring — there is going to be a cost. The chances of Charlotte actually winning the title seem slim, and that’s because she managed to infuriate most of the rest of the SmackDown women’s division minutes into her first promo on the show. Natalya, Tamina, and Carmella featuring James Ellsworth seem to have banded together in, if not a stable, at least a loose confederation whose goal is to make Charlotte pay.

Naomi and Becky Lynch are on the face side, and will naturally have plenty of combative interactions with Charlotte because of their alignment. Charlotte, though, has managed to isolate herself from the rest of the heels on the roster in record time, and has something of a Lady Legacy after her now. Charlotte might have earned her chance at Naomi’s title without interference, but it’s hard to imagine that a stable of second-generation wrestlers who feel threatened by Charlotte’s success and immediate impact on the blue brand will let her actual championship match go by without getting involved.

While this serves to highlight how few women are actually on SmackDown until Lana shows up and NXT provides an additional boost or two or three at the draft, it seems we aren’t going to have to wait to see what the women they do have are up to — or to see if all of them will have something to do. Plus, it’s a good reminder that SmackDown is all about building a cohesive, always-interacting universe — post-Shakeup, with a new-look lineup, that kind of reminder is welcome.

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