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My apologies in regards to both the title of this post and my lack of updates the past two weeks.  As I usually say, it isn’t because there hasn’t been anything going on in the world; rather, it’s more due to the fact that I’m a lazy bastard.  So, now that the self-deprecation section of this post is over, let’s look at what’s been going on the last week or two.

MONDAY NIGHT RAW

So the NXT Seven have been renamed the Nexus and they received their WWE contracts to work on Monday nights.  Yet they’re still beating people up.  Last week, they (minus Wade Barrett, who had visa issues) took out six legends of the ring.  Ricky Steamboat (who was there to promote his new DVD set, which I’m seriously considering picking up), Dean Malenko, IRS, Michael Hayes, and Jerry Lawler were all beaten to a pulp by these brash, young jackasses.  I’m just wondering how these six legends didn’t manage to fend for themselves.  Yes, they’re a lot older than the Nexus members, but they’re still a hell of a lot tougher than these young guns.  Ah, well.  If I were a WWE wrestler (full kayfabe mode initiated), I would say screw the suspension and go down and beat the shit out of the Nexus for doing such an audacious act to these men who were true pioneers in the business.  I know that their punishment will be meted out tonight…or, at least, I’m betting that they’ll be punished.  Should be interesting to watch.

Also, the eight Raw Money in the Bank participants were announced by Rob Zombie, who, I think, had the smallest guest host role to date.  I think this guest host thing is on its way out.  But I digress.  The eight participants are: Randy Orton, The Miz, R-Truth, Chris Jericho, Evan Bourne, Ted Dibiase, John Morrison, and Edge.  Snore.  The only person I’m excited to see in this match is Bourne, who has been on a much-deserved roll as of late.  He won’t win this time, as the deck is clearly stacked against him.  As far as the rest of the match goes, none of it interests me.  Orton, Edge, and Jericho don’t need a briefcase to tell them they’re main-event-level stars, and the rest aren’t yet ready for the big time.  If Morrison were to turn heel again, he would definitely be somewhere in the vicinity of infinity times more entertaining than he is now.  He’s stalled and I can’t see him moving up the ranks as a face.  He’s just so…boring.  If he ever wants to ascend to the highest echelon of the WWE, he needs to turn heel.

You know what’s bad?  When the WWE Champion isn’t the most important guy on the show.  When you’ve got multiple storylines that take precedence over the man who supposedly is the biggest draw for the entire company, you’ve got a problem.  It happened the first time Sheamus won the WWE Title, and it’s going to happen again.  It happened when Jack Swagger won the World Heavyweight Championship, and if he wins it again, the same thing will happen.  People don’t really care about these newer guys because they haven’t gotten a chance to build themselves up over time.  Rather, they were thrust into the spotlight in a very short amount of time.  Swagger won the ECW Championship two months into his WWE television career, and that tanked the brand.  Sheamus won the WWE Championship six months into his television career, and nobody cared.  And it isn’t just that these guys still aren’t that good in the ring.  It’s that they don’t have an identity.  They aren’t unique characters.  They’re just generic heels that we’re supposed to hate because they don’t care what we think of them.  Until Creative decides to work on developing character, it’s going to be awfully difficult to get anyone interested in these guys.  And character takes time to build.  Tossing these guys into the main event only screws the company over.  It draws less money and gives the fans less entertainment for their dollar.  So I hope that WWE Creative gets it through their heads that they need to stop pushing guys to the top who haven’t been in the business very long.  I’m not saying that everyone has to wait 5 or more years before earning their first world title.  I’m just saying that they need to pay their dues, and Creative needs to wait at least 1 year to see whether or not these guys deserve a title run.

Okay, I think that’s enough ranting at Creative for now.  Let’s look at NXT.

The first NXT poll was released last Tuesday, and one man was eliminated from the competition.  Let’s look at the standings real quick.

#1. Kaval/Low-Ki
#2. “Showtime” Percy Watson
#3. Joe Hennig
#4. Alex Riley
#5. Lucky Cannon
#6. Eli Cottonwood
#7. Husky Harris
#8. Titus O’Neil (eliminated)

If it is to be believed that the WWE polls actually accounted for half of the votes for this list, then this list probably does reflect the choices of the WWE fans a little better than Creative thinks the fans think they want.  I do, however, disagree with a few of the positions.  First, I think Eli Cottonwood should have been eliminated.  The guy is like a smaller version of The Great Khali, only he has even less charisma.  The guy is 35, and he’s just now breaking into television.  He’s a lost cause.  He should have gone.  While I do think that O’Neil should also have gone soon, at least he showed some mic progress over the last couple of weeks.  Still, he shouldn’t have been brought up at all.  I am disappointed that Harris was so low in the rankings.  The guy is actually creating a character for himself by beating Matt Striker to a pulp (which I thoroughly enjoy watching), and his reward is almost getting cut from NXT?  Sure, he’s still very young, but you can see the potential in him.  I think he should have placed at least 5th.  Which brings me to Lucky Cannon.  This guy is probably the most generic wrestler I’ve ever seen.  He has every trademark of a stereotypical wrestler: shoulder-length hair, tribal tattoos, et cetera.  He’s just bland.  He’s quite lucky (see what I did there?) to have won the idiotic beer keg carrying competition, because I would be kicking him off otherwise.  As for the top four, I would have kept Ki at the top but moved Hennig to #2, Riley to #3, and Watson to #4.  You all know my thoughts on Ki, and Joe Hennig is really proving that he doesn’t need NXT to jump to the big leagues.  Riley is a great talker, but I still have yet to see a good in-ring match from him.  Maybe Chikara has spoiled me.  And “Showtime” Percy Watson is just entertaining as hell.  But I just don’t know if he’ll succeed in a WWE ring.  Put him in any other company and watch the fans love him.  Hell, the WWE fans love him.  But does Creative love him?  I don’t know.  I’d like to see Watson get more in-ring time, as he’s had the least TV time out of all eight (now seven) rookies.  But hey, if he can get the #2 spot with as little screen time as he’s gotten, imagine how well he’ll do once he gets to work singles matches.

I do have one small question in regards to this whole show: why are these guys even bothering with the competition?  They saw what the Nexus did, so why not do the same on Smackdown?  We’ve finally got a faction with more than four members for the first time in a very, VERY long time, and I’m overjoyed.  So why not take six of the season 2 NXT rookies (take out Cottonwood, yecch), have them conglomerate with the Nexus, and have one huge faction spanning both brands?  It could be epic.  If nothing else, it would give Creative a dozen new faces to build characters and fill in spots where injuries have left holes in the rosters.  Plus, we could have Nexus members feuding with their former Pros.  Hell, all Nexus members could be on either show at any time.  Making the group nebulous makes it all the more interesting to me.  And you know what the kicker could be?  In a couple of months, reveal that Wade Barrett isn’t the true leader of the Nexus, but he was merely the mouthpiece for the true leader: Bryan Danielson.  He would get so over as a heel that it will make outrageous money for Vince and Company.  Believe me, if you put a heel Danielson on the mic, you’re going to get more heat than Vickie Guerrero could ever dream of getting.  Then they can get rid of Vickie and we’ll never have to see or hear her again.  Wouldn’t that be great?

Okay, speaking of Smackdown, let’s look at a couple of storylines that Creative seems to be focusing on.  I’m excited that Creative is finally giving a woman a personality and evolving her character at the same time.  Serena has gone from a bald chick to a legitimate character thanks to her performance last Friday night.  And it’s given some depth to the Straight Edge Society, who, up until now, have been a rather one-dimensional faction.  Serena falling off the wagon and inadvertently proving Punk’s innocence in this whole Undertaker fiasco has given us a storyline with tons of potential.  Unfortunately, this could be the beginning of the end for the SES.  Serena may go rogue, and we all know that she’s the glue of that faction.  Punk will move on, the masked man will hopefully unmask at some point, and Gallows will probably just fade away.  He’s gotten three chances with three different characters.  Once you’ve gone through that many characters, your time should be up.  Anyway, I like where this has started and I’m hoping it continues strong over the next few months.

I’m looking very much forward to the debut of Alberto del Rio, the former Dos Caras, Jr.  He’s had two great vignettes so far, and I’m sure that whenever he finally debuts, it will be to a chorus of heat.

And let’s look at the Smackdown Money in the Bank participants while I’m at it.  Only six men have been named so far.  We have Kane, The Big Show, Matt Hardy, Christian, Kofi Kingston, and “Dashing” Cody Rhodes.  Why Kane and Show are in this match is beyond me.  Kane has his own storyline to focus on.  He doesn’t need the MitB to clog up his focus.  And Show…well, I love Show, but he’ll probably cause ladders to fail just by stepping on them.  With Kingston in this match, it once again deprives the fans of both a US and Intercontinental Title match at a PPV.  Christian and Matt Hardy are ladder match staples, and they’ll provide great spots and damage control.  And what do I have to say about “Dashing” Cody Rhodes?  Nothing.  Absolutely nothing.  He can speak for himself.  As far as adding the last two names, may I make a suggestion: MVP and Dolph Ziggler.  Why not?  Ziggler is apparently turning face for no reason, and MVP needs a shot in the arm what with his WWE career circling the drain.  MVP is the other man desperately in need of a heel turn.  When he was a heel US Champion, he was gold.  As a face, he’s as bland as John Morrison.  It would do worlds of good for their characters if they both turned heel.  I’d definitely enjoy their work more if they did.

So, that’s my weekly wrap-up.  Before I go, there are two things I’d like to discuss very briefly (by which I mean 8,000 words).  First, I’d like to applaud WWE for their choice for the Money in the Bank theme song.  While I’d never heard of I Fight Dragons before finding out that they have the official MitB theme song, I am definitely interested in their work now.  For those who don’t know, I am a gigantic nerd, and I’ve been a video game fanatic for going on 20 years, so when I see a band that uses the NES sound chip as a major part of their music, I take notice.  I love the sound of the NES, and hearing it in song only makes me happy.  So I actually am giving WWE credit for introducing me to a new band.  Good for you.

And, because it wouldn’t be a Rantables post without ending on a sour note, there is a report making the rounds that Vince McMahon is telling his talents not to use knife-edge chops anymore because people make the “WOOOO!” sound in the audience, and that conjures up images of Ric Flair, who Vince doesn’t want the audience to think about because he’s working for the competition.  That’s just great.  You’ve got guys with fantastic chops (pun oh-so-deliciously intended) who won’t be able to use them anymore because Vince is paranoid that he’ll not lose any viewers because TNA Impact is on a different day and time than any of his shows.  I can see the future now: next, he’ll ban the leg drop because it reminds people of Hulk Hogan.  Then he’ll ban the DDT because it reminds people of Tommy Dreamer and Raven.  Then he’ll ban the use of weapons and tables and such because it reminds people of the Dudley Boys.  Then he’ll ban going to the top rope because it reminds people of Jeff Hardy.  Then he’ll ban suplexes because it reminds people of Tazz.  Then he’ll ban kicks because it reminds people of Rob Van Dam.  Then he’ll ban microphones and interviews because it reminds people of Mr. Kennedy.  And finally, he’ll ban wrestling because it reminds people of every former WWE wrestler who jumped ship to TNA or any other company, ever.  Then TNA will finally be #1.  Except TNA will have died a horrible death the day before because they had Hogan vs. Flair for the TNA Heavyweight Title at their latest PPV, Geriatrocity!

Bryan Danielson was right.  Chikara is the right way to do TV-PG wrestling.  Holy poop!

Okay, that’s it for now.  I hope you’ve enjoyed this little peek into my mind.  I’ll be back…sometime…with more news, notes, and craziness.  Until next time, stay awesome.

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