How can Smackdown top last week’s monumental climax of KO killing Vince McMahon? Not sure, but they start off with mini-McMahon coming out looking quite serious.
Shane goes for the personal angle, talking about his kids witnessing their grandfather getting beatdown. He talks about his family striking out with massive vengeance (his kids?).
The 47-year old condemns KO to “Hell in THE Cell”.
Aidan English vs Randy Orton
English starts with a song:
‘He hears voices in his head, which is surprising because it’s full of lead’.
Orton comes out probably quite excited to win a quick match against a jobber and not break a sweat or take a bump.
English comes out swinging, tossing his shirt to distract the million-time champion.
Orton quickly recovers, hitting his powerslam and going for the ridiculous mid-rope DDT.
English easily gets out of the DDT because the move is stupid.
English does well outside the ring, side-slamming Orton onto an announcer table!? I spoke too soon about Orton taking it easy.
After some back and forth, English flies off the top rope into an RKO and Orton gets the win.
This was much better than I predicted. English looked great actually getting in offense, showing a nice snarl and technique. Orton worked way harder than I first thought.
Rusev says Orton made him a national disgrace and challenges him to a fight ‘right now’.
Orton nods his head and the ring the bell (Orton is co-GM I guess).
English distracts Orton and Rusev hits a Superkick, getting the pin.
Weird that they had a match, and weirder that Orton worked so much in a night, even taking a quick loss!
I’d like to see Rusev come back to prominence, and maybe this is a start to that.
Rusev is celebrating backstage, and Reneé Young catches up with him, asking about how elated he is.
Rusev doesn’t understand the word because he’s foreign. He talks about being a national hero and yells out ‘Rusev #1’ which the crowd immediately chants. WWE are you listening?
Jinder Mahal promo
Oh why couldn’t Rusev have been Indian? It’s ironic that Mahal’s character complains of racism when his race is the main reason he’s champ.
Mahal talks about the crowd being racist to Japanese people and turning on Nakamura, constantly showing an awkward still of Nakamura’s face on the jumbo-tron.
Mahal then racistly says Nakamura always ‘rooks the same’. He claims the crowd says Nakamura gets his hair cut by a dog groomer, calls him Mr Miyagi, and then something else in Punjabi. The crowd chants ‘that’s too far’.
Another boring promo, though I’d be interested in what Mahal could come up with on his own.
Renee Young and Nakamura
Nakamura says it won’t be so funny when he wins the belt at Hell in a Cell.
AJ Styles vs Baron Corbin
Styles warns KO about the consequences of messing with the McMahons (because the best wrestler in the company should be building up how awesome Shane is).
Corbin attacks Styles during the introduction, before the bell rings.
Tye Dillinger runs in!
Dillinger hits Corbin from behind, clotheslines him to the outside, and goes to town on him.
Corbin limps back to the ring, waving off the ref. Bell still hasn’t rung.
Styles hits Corbin while he’s down and applies the Calf Killer to Corbin’s injured leg, causing an immediate tap-out.
Glad to see Corbin shifted to possibly feud with Dillinger. He doesn’t deserve a Styles feud and could get refreshed working with an eager Dillinger.
Corbin backstage with Renee
Corbin yells at Young about his injury. He says he won’t whine/bitch/complain, instead he’ll get even.
Great to see Charlotte back, but I hope she doesn’t revert to the bland face persona she debuted alongside her father with.
Charlotte is dressed in street clothes and her book is shown onscreen.
She says the last six weeks have been literally life and death but her dad is making a comeback.
Her lesson is that life is fragile and she’ll make every moment as big and possible for her and her dad.
Natalya says Charlotte can stay as this concerns her. She’s presenting the first ever Women’s Celebration on Smackdown.
A covered presentation is brought in the ring. Natty says it’s a picture of someone truly great, who finished what Amelia Earhart couldn’t do.
Natty unveils it to be……………………………………herself!
Becky Lych! also in street clothes
Becky sounds really good here. She rarely gets to sound natural. She calls Natty the craziest there was, is, ever will be etc.
Naomi in street clothes and multicolored eye shadow
She says Natalya only represents her ‘stankASS’. She’s about to ask for a title match when….
Tamina and Lana appear
Lana calls Natalya a crazy cat lady and tells her to shut up. She talks about their ravishing revolution, says the other girls have had their shot, and it’s Tamina’s turn.
Natalya walks down the ramp and pouts about not being a crazy cat lady, insisting she is the champion and will be forever.
Daniel Bryan joins the party
Natty looks worried
Bryan calls Natty Gloria Steinem (a famous feminist).
Bryan puts Charlotte, Becky, Naomi, and Tamina in a Fatal Four Way, with the winner facing Natty at Hell in a Cell.
Hope the girls brought their wrestling gear or they’ll have to have a street fight to match their clothes. Great to see Charlotte back in the ring and Lana back as strictly a manager. Also nice to see matches that crown no.1 contenders, though the division is still pretty small. Probably would have been better to have all the women on RAW, especially to pump up the 3-hour runtime with better talent.
Hype Bros vs The New Day
Usos on commentary, so expect them to interfere.
Big E immediately goes for the New Day slap stretch, but Rawley reverses it into his own ‘He, ain’t Hyped’ slap, even licking his hand before doing it.
A decent match with the Hype Bros getting a fair amount of offense in.
But, The New Day win clean, proving me completely wrong about The Usos interfering!
The Usos on commentary was the most enjoyable part for me. They’re hilarious and helped build excitement towards their next encounter with TND in the big Cell.
KO via satellite
Owens apologizes for hurting Vince, blaming it on Shane, who deserved it, saying he saw Shane in Vince and had to hurt him. He also says Shane is wrong about KO going to Hell, claiming people like KO go to Heaven.
Glad to see KO booked like a dangerous killer. Hoping he can come out on top of Shane, but dastardly 50/50 booking will most likely strike.
Hype Bros sad backstage
Rawley is sick and tired of losing, he says something has to give, and that something ‘drastic’ will have to be done.
I thought Rawley was about to turn on Ryder, but glad he didn’t do the predictable thing. Interested to see what this ‘drastic’ idea is.
Dolph Ziggler promo
Ziggler talks about the entrances he’s parodied and how he’s the greatest performer in WWE history. He goes backstage.
Ziggler comes out as The Game HHH.
Again, the half-hearted shallow impersonation isn’t entertaining in the slightest.
He comes out as HBK
Cringey as Ziggler has always tried so hard to be like Michaels.
Ziggler comes out as DX
He has two words for ya ‘Who Cares’. Ziggler actually gets a bit interesting talking about Michaels and HHH being two dads begging for attention to their lame jokes, coasting into retirement. He claims the crowd only cares about elaborate entrances and not the in-ring work, so he, in turn, doesn’t care about them.
The last parody was the only one with substance, making a statement about the subject and relating it to his relationship with the crowd. The others were too shallow. He needs to dig his teeth into the material more. Also, will HHH be the one to retaliate? Ziggler insulted Levesque several times, but I hardly see HHH helping Ziggler get any further.
Charlotte vs Tamina vs Becky vs Naomi
We get the usual ring-clearing often seen in four-ways, but later on, things get more interesting.
Charlotte hits a moonsault onto both Naomi and Tamina, but can’t pin either. She puts Naomi into the figure-four but Lynch hits Charlotte with a top-rope leg drop but Tamina breaks up the pin. Tamina uses the advantage to Samoan Drop and Snuka-Splash Becky, but Naomi breaks the pin. Lana pulls Naomi out and Tamina Super Kicks her in on the way in. Charlotte hits Tamina with a big boot and gets the win.
A better than usual multi-person match. Charlotte might have been a bit rusty but still brought the excitement. Will she finally get the Smackdown title after floudering for so long? I’d also like to see Becky fight for the no.1 spot, perhaps playing off her ethical ways going unrewarded. She’s sorely underutilized as well.
I love that women headlining the show is completely normal and can be the best match of the night. Mind you they didn’t have much competition with so many short matches, but a TV show should hold back like this, adding anticipation to the big show coming up.
Great to see Charlotte back and already on her way to the championship though they could have gotten a few more weeks of storytelling out of her journey. Feels a bit rushed considering she’s done nothing of importance since coming to Smackdown. The Ziggler shtick is awful, though it’s heelish I suppose since I’d like to see someone come out and shut him up. Rusev and Orton are treading water and Mahal was lukewarm as usual. I understand that Nakamura won’t be having a Cena/Reigns shoot-off, but something a bit more intense in the ring would be nice.
A solid enough show, with Charlotte adding the extra spice making it worth watching.