I’m about to pull a WWE here.
Let’s talk about repetition. Again.
Repetitive talking about WWE’s repetition. And this isn’t mainly a SmackDown thing, but I have to say that it’s definitely noticeable that the blue brand is feeling a bit more like the red brand as of late.
Same type of booking. In this case, heels mixing it up who have no history with each other just to put together a 6 person tag. We literally saw this twice on Raw this week. Disqualifications. Whatever the eff they’re doing with Shayna Baszler.
While the main event was great, the only different thing on this show is whatever is going on with Aleister Black. That’s it! Everything else is a feud that’s been going on since before WrestleMania. Sheesh.
Let’s get to the main hits and misses of this show. For a full rundown of SmackDown, check out the live blog by Rev. Claire Elizabeth!
Goodbye for now
This episode of SmackDown was purely to hype the main event, and put Daniel Bryan over.
All of this coincides with the very real life talks of Bryan winding down his wrestling career. Now, this doesn’t mean Bryan is done. WWE has two more brands! They were very careful with the wording of this - banished from SmackDown. Not WWE.
Bryan was interviewed early in the show and said that he was feeling very comfortable and relaxed heading into the match. You could feel that he was at peace with the very thought that he could be off of the show.
Later, Paul Heyman was interviewed and said he’s tired of hearing about Daniel Bryan, while putting over his every accolade of course. It was a great promo! And what’s great about Heyman is that these promos feel extra special, since he doesn’t do most of the talking this time around.
And then the match.
It was long, it was brutal, and both men sold their asses off.
Naturally it started with the urgency Bryan always has when facing Reigns. The balance between the two is great, too.
Bryan finally got that Yes Lock locked in, and Reigns flipped. He pounded on him, and the brilliance of this was that the whole match, Bryan worked Reigns’ right arm. So Reigns smartly transitioned to his left arm for the Guillotine.
Bryan faded away, as does his time on SmackDown.
But Reigns didn’t want it to end there! he grabbed two chairs, and Cesaro ran out to help. It was then (and only then) Jey Uso came out and superkicked him in the face. Uso tied Cesaro up in the ropes and watched as Reigns did the dreaded conchairto to write Bryan off into the sunset.
It was a perfect ending. Personally, I’d love to see Bryan make an appearance on NXT. I’d watch for him!
As for Cesaro, looks like he may end up being Roman’s challenger at WrestleMania Backlash. Of course, he’s still involved with Seth Rollins because... no feud actually ends anymore. WrestleMania is just another standard pay-per-view.
Now let’s address the BIG change from this episode - Roman’s new music. Disclaimer - Wrestling and Music are subjective. What you like may not be what I like.
With that out of the way, I don’t like it. At all. I’m definitely in the minority from what I’ve seen around the Cageside offices and on the social media machine. I’m willing to give it a chance though, y’all.
Please don’t hate me.
What the heck is going on here?
So... Aleister Black.
I was not here last week as you may have realized, so this is very new to me. Apparently, Aleister is a narrator of animation and the “dark father” of whose book he is reading from.
I am not typically into this mystical stuff, so my first impression of this is that I’m not going to like where this goes.
Look for Alexa Bliss and Lilly in the references section of this book for continuity of my feelings on mystical stuff. There’s quite a bit of that book dedicated to them.
I have always been fond of Aleister Black. I don’t know how this transitions to ring work. More than likely he’ll have new music.
As long as there isn’t a doll involved.
Familiarity (Big E vs. Apollo Crews ends in a disqualification)
Oh look - a title match gets a disqualification thanks to the heel’s manager/sommelier/friend/Commander. I was just waiting for it to happen. The match was good. I encourage you to watch. But it’s definitely not something that you need to go out of your way to watch. Apollo and Big E have been feuding for months. It’s starting to remind me of Seth Rollins and Rey Mysterio from last year. The matches are good, but when you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all.
Give me an Eye for an Eye match. Or a Nigerian Eye for an Eye match or something. You know, a match that has Nigerian background and importance that’s actually just a street fight.
Bianca Belair and The Street Profits defeated Bayley and The Dirty Dawgz
Oh look - a 6 person tag involving people who are feuding with each other. Feels a bit familiar too, doesn’t it? Basically, what they want us to know is Bianca Belair is the EST, in case we forgot since she debuted on the main roster with a video package telling us she’s the EST, and then 5 or 6 months later, another video package telling us she’s the EST. And then WrestleMania was WrESTleMania. I love her so I’m not too bothered, but it’s very repetitive. Everyone cut each other off and then they had their match. Highlights were certainly Roode’s awesome selling of Belair’s whiplash, and Ford’s insane frog splash. Dude didn’t even stop at the top rope and set it up. Incredible.
Tamina and Natalya defeated Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler
Oh look - this again. When you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all!
What were your thoughts, Cagesiders?