Like they have for most of WWE’s cinematic wrestling productions, reactions to the “Climb the Corporate Ladder” main event of May 10’s Money in the Bank PPV have been mixed. Much of it seems to depend on how amusing or funny you found the cameos by executives/figures from WWE history the participants bumped into while trying to make it to the top of the headquarters building to retrieve the Money in the Bank briefcase.
As someone who’s still trying to decide what I thought about the action that led to Asuka and Otis holding contracts for title shots, I thought I’d go through those cameos to try and figure what worked - and what didn’t.
Look. That’s not even Doink. In fact, whoever this guy from marketing they slapped a wig and some face paint on isn’t fit to wear Matt Borne’s oversized shoes. Plus, this had no impact on the match.
5. Stephanie McMahon
I’m not usually one to complain about appearances by the Billion Dollar Princess (not since The Authority finally stopped being a thing, anyway). But this was bad. For starters, she clearly wasn’t anywhere near the set with Dana Brooke, Shayna Baszler and Nia Jax. Then, this is the payoff to a mini-gag they had going about Dana not knowing where the briefcase was (she demanded Baszler tell her where she was hiding it before they spilled into the Money in the Bank conference room). Wrap it all up with Steph making fun of Jax for drooling on the floor, and this almost plays like trolling fans who say the Chief Brand Officer has to make everything WWE does with their women’s roster about her.
At least it inadvertently led to this all-time great Twitter exchange...
4. John Laurinaitis
Some folks rep the nWo. Me? I’m People Power 4 Life, especially if the scooter is involved. This might have worked better if Johnny Ace wasn’t the third former General Manager we saw, and the second former GM we saw who did food humor with Dozer.
3. Paul Heyman
Paul E. reacting to typical WWE nonsense like a food fight is always gonna make me smile. But I was a bit worried when we saw him sitting at that catering spread. I mean, last time Heyman was around a Money in the Bank match, his client left with the briefcase.
2. Brother Love
A fully in-character Bruce Prichard emerging from a bathroom stall to tell Rey Mysterio he loves him was something I cringed about on first viewing. Today, I LOOOOVED it. It’s just so freaking weird, and Rey’s reply is just so earnest, I can’t hate it. Plus, it gives us an excuse to make bathroom jokes, which makes every wrestling fan's inner 12 year old happy - whether they admit it or not.
1. Mr. McMahon
Could it be anything else?
We all knew it was coming - how many times did an announcer or interviewer say “they could even end up in Vince’s office!?!?” while talking up the match(es), after all. But I didn’t expect it to involve Ring of Honor veterans Daniel Bryan and AJ Styles acting like his grandkids. Or Vince in jeans. Or a joke about the chairs in his office that would fit into a Mr. Brodie Lee segment on Dynamite. Or morph into a PSA for proper hygiene.
The rewatch I did to make this list has sold me on the “Climb The Corporate Ladder” match(es). I wouldn’t want something that ostensibly matters like a title shot to be decided with something this silly every year, or even ever again. But given the state of the world, this was alright.
Except for DARNK. Get that guy the F out of here.
Let us know what you thought about last night’s cameos, or anything else about the main event, in the comments below.