Charlotte, Becky, Carmella, Natalya, and Tamina
Shane unveils the Women’s Money in the Bank briefcase
Ellsworth tells Shane not to ‘mansplain’ how the Money in the Bank works. He’s right.
Carmella starts claiming she’ll win but Charlotte interrupts with a booming “PIPE DOWN, PRINCESS!”
The crowd is either mic’d very well, extremely hot, or a combination of both.
Natalya interrupts Charlotte and says she’s tired of hearing Charlotte rip off her father’s ‘WHOO’. She then hypocritically says Bret Hart’s catchphrase.
Becky interrupts her and says the only thing Natty is the best at, is ripping off her Uncle Bret.
Tamina says all the women do is talk, but she’ll shut them up when she wins.
Naomi’s music hits
Naomi ‘the Ultimate Rave Warrior’ comes down to say ‘hey y’all’. She wishes she could be in the match. She says she’s ready for the challenger when we get a big surprise
Lana’s music hits
The music we’ve heard from Lana’s ‘comin soon’ promo is recognizable at this point and the crowd reacts strongly to the familiar rythm, even chanting her name before she gets the mic.
Shane says ‘this is the land of opportunity’ and her coming down ‘is not working’ for him at this time.
Lana says “I promise you, what works for me, I’ll make work for you”. The crowd ‘whooos’ this. She goes on to say that although Naomi can’t compete in the match, she can.
Naomi laughs at this and all the girls are either scripted to laugh or appear to be breaking worse than Jimmy Fallon on SNL. It feels pretty natural as the crowd laughs along.
Lana asks what’s funny, and Naomi says “Bugs Bunny…….and you”. Naomi asks Lana who she has beaten before, and Lana responds by saying “I can beat you!”. Becky and Charlotte hold their hands up to their mouths and either mime ‘too sweet’ or pretend to smoke joints. Acting is reacting!
Shane breaks up the frustration and Lana leaves. The crowd chants ‘We want Lana’ but Shane puts the focus on the upcoming 6-Woman’s tag match.
The women had great chemistry, the crowd was playing along, and the production nailed the vibe. Although obviously scripted, many of the lines and interplay felt natural and created some genuine tension. It was interesting to see the crowd so hot on Lana and we’re all curious to see how she can perform in the ring.
Charlotte, Becky, Naomi vs Natty, Carmella, Tamina
Charlotte controls the opening but Natty hits her with a shoulder block. Natty seems to blow a spot and Charlotte angrily chops her three times (those hurt).
Becky and Carmella square off. Becky gets Carmella between her legs and rolls all the way around the ring while Carmella screams and the crowd laugh’s their appreciation. Natalya clotheslines Becky on the outside and we go to commercial.
Becky takes the beating as Tamina settles in with heavy rest holds and vicious punches to the head.
The announcers mostly talk over the match: terrible.
Naomi get the hot tag and dishes out clotheslines, jawbreakers, and a killer kick to Tamina’s head that even had referee Charles Robinson recoil in shock.
The heels double-team Charlotte and the crowd cheers as Lana comes to the ring.
Lana yanks Naomi’s legs out, setting Tamina up for a superkick and the win.
A decent match for the limited time it got. I wonder if WWE expected Lana to get such a warm welcome. Seeing her with the heels makes sense, but if she can perform in the ring, she could have a bright future.
Mojo Rawley confronts Shane backstage
Mojo tells Shane he’s frustrated about riding the pine, and wants an opportunity to break through. He reminds Shane that he’s the only one to defeat the Smackdown Champion Jinder Mahal (I’m surprised the WWE brought up the fact their Champion was a jobber so recently).
Shane offers Mojo a chance to earn his way into the MitB match if he can defeat…
Jinder Mahal! (tonight)
AJ Styles vs Dolph Ziggler
Like usual, Styles gets the best out of his opponent as Ziggler appears to give much more effort than usual. They go back and forth in an exciting match as Ziggler keeps trying to get the pin by holding the ropes.
Styles gets the win with a neat finish, turning this
He hits an especially fast and brutal Styles Clash, picking up the win.
There’s been too much match repetition since the brand split but Styles is the best in the world and Ziggler looked like he had something to prove. The match was fast and intense, with an interesting enough finish that you forgot the match was meaningless.
Fandango took last week’s bottle of cologne to the lab, but there was no boys…and no lab. He tasted it for prints, and it tasted like cologne. They have a hilarious exchange about the Colons and cologne.
The New Day enter the Fashion Files office and are surprised that they’re now in black and white. They ask for Breezango’s help.
Breezango accept with their mind voices but the New Day can’t hear. They offer Breezango male rompers but Fandango throws his on the ground.
Breeze tries it on and loves all the pockets.
Breezango ask New Day what they know about the Day One Ish shirts and accept the case….in their mind.
The New Day slowly walk out as Breezango mind-chant ‘New, Case Rock’.
Another great episode. The writing and performances are stellar and surprisingly subtle for a wrestling show. Hopefully this elevates Breezango and keeps them relevant in the Smackdown tag scene.
Mojo Rawley vs Jinder Mahal
Mojo wins the first three exchanges but Singh Brother distraction lets Mahal get in a big kick and a few headlocks.
Mojo sideslams out of a rest hold and delivers another set of shoulderblocks and clotheslines.
He goes for a fireman’s carry but Jinder rakes the eyes and sends him shoulder first into the ring post. Jinder hits the Khallas and wins.
Mahal says Orton and the people who support him are sick but he is the antidote and will cure them all. He receives the usual boos and ‘U-S-A’ chants, but there’s a smarky group in the front row that claps along with the Singh Brothers.
Mahal is serviceable in the ring but Mojo wrestles like a celebrity football player with his limited offense of shoulder blocks and clotheslines. It worked for Goldberg, but he had a legitimate intensity and WCW built him into a star. It’s a bit sad to see the WWE Championship in this state.
Hopefully, anyone but Ziggler wins the Money in the Bank and converts it quickly to put one of the best workers back on top.
New Day vs The Colons
The start is back and forth with Xavier getting in his loud offense. A tag to Big E sets up a double ‘New Day Rocks’ slap fest.
Woods is flying around, landing a missile dropkick and a front flip dive to the outside.
The New Day wins with their Midnight Hour finisher
The Usos interrupt the celebration
The Usos say The New Day is more like ‘yesterday’, as in ‘old news’. They try to get ‘welcome to the USO, penitentiary’ over as a catch phrase, but it’s not very catchy.
They switch gears and try some insult comedy.
They tell Kofi that with his pigtails and a crop-top, all he’s missing is a tu-tu…(bad)
They ask Big E if those are his initials, or if that’s his bra size (better)
They tell Woods to look up, look down, and ask himself ‘what are those’ (referring to his shoes…not great).
They finish with their line about goosebumps, and how ‘it’s not, paranoia, it’s the U-SO’. (That could become catchy if they turn face).
Sami Zayn interview
Zayn says he’s watched a lot of footage of his opponents to figure them out for the upcoming MitB match, but he can’t figure out Shinsuke Nakamura. He says Nakamura’s charisma is too captivating that you forget how hard he strikes. Although this is cringe-worthy, I’m glad to see the WWE is so high on Nakamura. They even showed a lame video of his highlights intercut with an artist painting, furthering the lame ‘artist’ name.
Corbin interrupts and beats up Zayn, taking his spot on commentary for the Nakamura/Owens match.
Naomi asks Shane for a title match with Lana
Naomi demands a match with Lana at MitB, and says Lana better get a Russian fur hat, since she’s going to snatch her bald.
Kevin Owens vs Shinsuke Nakamura (Corbin on commentary)
KO meets Nakamura for the first time ever, with very little buildup.
While Owens and Nakamura have their hardly hyped first meeting, we have to listen to Corbin repeat himself to JBL about beating up Zayn. It’s not new information, it’s not interesting, and it takes away from what should be an exciting match. After the first exchange they go to commercial.
Back from commercial and we hear that Owens has been in control over the break. They show replays of the exciting out-of-ring action while we watch Owens do a rest hold and listen to Corbin talk about his basic strategy for MitB. It feels badly organized. They even cut the camera away from the ring to show Corbin talking.
After just a few minutes of back and forth, Nakamura hits the reverse exploder suplex and Kinchasa for the abrupt win. Does he get the title? No clue! Since the commentary was awful.
Corbin sneak attacks Nakamura after the match
What a waste! Owens and Nakamura could have been a highly hyped PPV match, but instead was rushed on Smackdown with the focus on Corbin’s boring commentary.
Nakamura beat Owens so fast it made KO look weak. Corbin’s post-match attack was a simple finisher without a beatdown of any kind. It received little reaction and mostly served to kill any post-win momentum Nakamura had.
The Women’s promo and Fashion Files were highlights, but most of the matches were rushed and under-developed.
If the WWE can’t properly build a match, they should at least cut out the redundant interviews and Smackdown title logos to give their superstars time to shine in the ring.
A surprisingly mediocre show.