?Sylin? and Profilin’?-Kayfabe Is Overrated
?Styling and Profiling? You have just left the Twilight Zone (Maybe)
When the six man tag team match for Backlash with Legacy against Triple H, Shane McMahon, and Batista I thought that I had entered the Twilight Zone. In fact, I?ve almost been expecting Rod Serling to show up on my television screen during RAW and explain how things in the WWE have been operating in an alternate reality and that nothing really was at it seemed. The booking at No Way Out made no sense. Edge wins the WWE Championship at the Royal Rumble, then loses it at No Way out, but then walks out with the World Heavyweight Championship. While those shenanigans were going on, Triple H walked out of No Way Out with the WWE Championship. Now instead of watching John Cena and Randy Orton battle for the World Heavyweight Championship at the Company’s biggest show we were on pace to watch Randy Orton square off against Triple H for the WWE Title at Wrestlemania. Did someone invent the time machine and take us back to 2005? All the while John Cena, Edge, and Big Show were involved in some ridiculous love triangle. When all of the above had materialized at Wrestlemania I couldn?t help but feel just completely lost.
I should have known better because as Backlash started to shape up, I felt the same way. The WWE title is going to be defended in a six-man tag team match? I know that we?ve all seen these type of matches before. But usually they at least consist of multiple main eventer’s with some stake in the match, and the match is set up so that the individual who gets the pinfall has a chance to win the title being defended. But in this case we had Triple H’s title on the line, and if he lost it would change hands, even if he lost via DQ or countout. Even if Cody Rhodes pinned Shane McMahon. Seriously? This had all the makings of a disastrous stretch here for the WWE. Then Randy Orton pins Triple H to win the WWE Title. The ship seems to have righted itself and we?re headed in the right direction. All hail the Age or Orton!
I guess we?ll see, but ultimately I think the WWE is where most fans thought it would be a couple of months back. Triple H and Randy Orton can hopefully put to rest. Forever. I mean that. I never want to see these two wrestle another match again in my entire life. I don?t even care if they are in a tag team match against each other and don?t enter the ring at the same time. They should never be allowed to wrestle each other again. I tried to advocate the importance of the match up going forward to Wrestlemania 25 as a passing of the torch type match. Instead we got a complete crapfest. I almost wonder if Randy Orton smoked a doobie the night before (ala Wrestlemania 22) and was paranoid about being suspended and losing his push. I can?t even begin to describe my current angst towards Triple H. Over the years I?ve defended the guy like no other, but now I see him in a main event and I feel the same way Red Sox fans feel about J.D. Drew (or any baseball fan for that matter). His time at the top needs to come to an end, at least for now.
In other complete and total randomness, I can?t help but feel completely un-excited about the supposed conclusion to the Edge/John Cena feud that we got at Backlash. I haven?t seen the PPV, but the build up to this seems totally random. Almost as if the WWE decided to finally give us the Triple H/Orton feud they?ve been trying to find a way to integrate into their programming since 2004, and had to put the rest of their storylines on hold until they could finally unload that big steaming pile of ridiculousness. Now don?t get me wrong: If Triple H/Orton is like J.D. Drew for the Red Sox (okay Triple H is mostly the J.D. Drew aspect of things), then Edge/Cena is like Manny Ramirez and David Ortiz circa 2004. Except this round felt more liked last year when David Ortiz was on the Disabled List and Ramirez was begging to be traded. Something was missing. It wasn?t the same. It was rushed, past its prime, and lacking the depth that earlier iterations of the feud had. All in all it was almost as if the WWE decided to put the brakes on creating new stars and took their focus from the current and next generation of wrestler’s to give a tribute to the past one last time.
Then, seemingly in one fell swoop everything was made right in the world. Edge was World Champion, and Randy Orton had the WWE Title. The fans rebelled by taunting Triple H. If only Michael Cole was moved back to Smackdown in place of JR all really would be right with the world. Now in all of this I haven?t even mentioned that CM Punk has the Money In The Bank briefcase. It seems as if the darling’s of the IWC are all in the right place right now. It’s hard to predict where things are going in the WWE, and honestly I?m not even sure what I think about things. Where does Orton go from here? I mean is anyone really excited about his match at Judgment Day with Batista? Batista has morphed into ?The Little Main Eventer? that could. We all know he isn?t going to win the title, but we also know he’s going to keep chugging along in the main event scene. A feud with Cena seems to be on the back burner. What happens with Triple H when he comes back from selling this punt injury?
On the Smackdown side of things I think it’s even more unpredictable. While I am a huge Chris Jericho fan, he seems to have been relegated to the ?B list? of main eventers in the WWE. Edge, Jericho, Hardy, Rey Mysterio, Kane and CM Punk are all guys who have been main evented PPV’s in the past, but haven?t really had the staying power on top on RAW. Edge might be the one exception, but I wonder how much success he would have had on RAW over the past two years.
Either way, at this point I?m having a really hard time getting my hands around the WWE and where it’s going at this point. I feel as if there’s no real direction the show is headed in. We have Randy Orton on RAW and then there’s everyone else. The show is seemingly in limbo when you consider who’s going to challenge for the WWE Title and fill out the rest of the card. Smackdown has a similar feeling, but it seems to be geared a bit more towards the top of the card now that they?ve lost some of their main event talent. It will be interesting to see who emerges from the crop of main event talent on Smackdown and where they are a year from now. By that I mean, if they succeed do they get shipped back to RAW? What’s going to happen to Edge? He seems to have lost some of the momentum that has made him special the past few years. There’s a lot of unanswered questions floating around in the ?WWE Universe? (I hate myself for using that phrase), and I?m not sure where they?re going to take us. Maybe I?ll just Google Rod Serling and see what comes up. Chances are I?ll be satisfied with the results there. I?m not sure I can say the same about where pro wrestling is headed in the coming months.