Barnett's WWE Smackdown Hitlist: The Divas get some attention, Kane and Ziggler impress, as do Swagger and Jericho, but The Shield and the World Heavyweight Championship feud need some work
By Jake Barnett
Check out Chris Shore’s All Access audio review of WWE Smackdown, which is available on the main page.
WWE Smackdown Hits
The Divas: A minor hit here with an above average Women’s tag match and a good backstage segment with The Bella Twins and the Funkadactyls. It wasn’t mind blowing, but it’s at least a start at giving the division a bit of attention. Kaitlyn has shown some promise as Divas Champion and it would be nice if she had some credible heels to work against. The Bella’s brawl with the Funkadactyls was a nice start to introducing them in that role.
Ryback juxtaposed with Big Show and Mark Henry: I liked what they managed to do with Ryback here on this show, who looks truly surrounded by enemies. He’s contended with The Shield for months, and now he snubbed Big Show as the third man in the Sheamus and Randy Orton team for WrestleMania. Mark Henry also took advantage of a Shield attack during their match to take some liberties with him. Ryback is now in a position to finally get his revenge on The Shield at WrestleMania, and potentially mow down two of WWE’s largest and most intimidating superstars in upcoming feuds. It should make for a very strong logical progression of his character as he makes his way toward the World Championship scene.
Kane vs. Dolph Ziggler: This was a very well wrestled match that gave Dolph Ziggler a very good win, and made good use of the outside the ring distractions to get there. Everybody played their part well here and it was nice to see another potential feud develop with Ziggler and Langston getting the best of Bryan and Kane twice in one week.
Jack Swagger vs. Chris Jericho: A very solid TV main event, with just a few awkward spots keeping it from being truly excellent. I don’t know that this win really does much for the ongoing feud between Del Rio and Swagger, but it was certainly entertaining. Jericho has been very good in the ring since his return, but I have yet to see him do anything truly interesting with his character. I guess you could say the same for Swagger.
WWE Smackdown Misses
The feud between Del Rio and Swagger: The train left the station on this one a while ago, and I’m not sure what to think of it anymore. It probably seemed like a slam dunk to put a charismatic Mexican babyface opposite a vaguely racist Aryan looking wrestler with controversial political stances, but it just hasn’t done anything for me. The problems started for me at least when it became obvious that Colter didn’t really have much new to say beyond week two of this feud, and now that Del Rio and Ricardo have just started to mock them, it makes it all the easier to ignore the whole thing.
The Shield: The Shield are a miss this week because I find them to be in the same situation as Del Rio and Swagger, except maybe not quite as severely. They haven’t had much original to say for weeks, and I’ve begun to grow a bit weary of the “dogs of justice” attacks that have lost quite a bit of their impact over time. I like this act and I hope they can do more interesting things with them, but they’ve been having the same feud with interchangable babyfaces since they started and it’s just growing a little moss at this point.
Video Packages: Please WWE, I beg of you, calm down on the recap video packages. I know you have an expertly skilled and highly creative video production team, but regular watchers of your programming are literally watching the same content up to 3 or 4 times a week depending on how much programming they watch and record.
Questions, comments, or concerns? Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or on twitter @barnettjake.
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