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    Thursday, October 4, 2018

    SmackDown RunDown Live (10/2/18): Give Her Some Goddamn Respect!

    I was reminded this week that the 1000th episode of the SmackDown brand is two weeks away. How cool is that? I’ve always been a SmackDown guy, not because I’m the guy reviewing it, but because I always thought of it as a wrestling-centric show. SmackDown has always been the home of the greatest in-ring performers in WWE. Eddie Guerrero, Chavo Guerrero, Rey Mysterio, Edge, Kurt Angle, and [redacted] are all the names I need to prove my point.

    Which leads me to ask who you will nominate for today’s SmackDown Six? AJ Styles easily fits the bill, followed by Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair. I still have three spots open, though. While we figure that out, let’s dissect this week’s show, shall we?

    Super Show-Down Hype: Change The Damn Poster Already!

    Closing off this week’s go-home show is another solid segment from the new queen, Becky Lynch, and the old guard, Charlotte Flair. How cool is it that this storyline is constantly getting main event spots like it’s nothing? It’s because it’s a Grade-A storyline, that’s why. Becky Lynch wowed everyone once again with her scathing promo about not getting any damn respect. So she made the greatest PPV poster in all of WWE. Go tell your marketing department to make this the official Super Show-Down poster already. It’s just too glorious it hurts a little.

    And sure, Charlotte Flair gained the upper hand this week because we can’t have her getting beaten up all the time. But what soothed me was the chorus of boos as Flair was laying the smacketh down on our champion. I’m pretty sure they muted some of the reactions because the boos and cheers had to be louder than that. Nonetheless, both women looked strong going into Super Show-Down and I’m hyped to see Becky Lynch retain her title in Australia. Please let her have like a CM Punk 2012-esque reign of terror.

    Shelton Benjamin made his triumphant return from inactivity to take on Daniel Bryan. Big upgrade, if you ask me. Benjamin definitely needed the rub considering how valuable he can be on the roster. And hey, I’m glad he actually pinned D-Bry thanks to the distraction from The Miz. You can taste Benjamin’s ruthlessness from a mile away and I hope this new attitude will give Benjamin more chances to be in the spotlight. Shinsuke Nakamura’s looking for competition, right?

    It looks like it’ll be a meaningless victory for Benjamin after all because of course it’s all about The Miz proving his point that Bryan doesn't have what it takes to be a champion again. I like how they’re keeping the rivalry fresh by shifting the focus of their storyline after every major PPV. Now that we’re in the third season of their reignited feud, the main crux of the story involves both men’s moral codes and I’m loving it so far. Either one of them could win at Super Show-Down and I’ll have no complaints. Just make it as dramatic as possible like their previous outings. Maybe have D-Bry break a rule or something.

    It’s Not All Super Show-Down Stuff, You Know

    What’s cool about this week’s show was that the focus wasn’t entirely on Super Show-Down. Normally, this episode will be riddled with promos and video packages for the big Australia show but surprisingly, there only aired three clips. I’m so relieved to see that SmackDown Live is leaving behind its old format of being a 2-hour commercial for the next PPV. So by all means, let’s check out the stuff that won’t be on Australia this Saturday.

    I know I embargoed this storyline last week, but I’m still curious about what the frick happened in Milwaukee. Damnit, Aiden! He’s pretty much the Dr. Frank-N-Furter of WWE because he actually had all of us hooked in anticipation. Thanks to this “evidence”, I now know two things; Aiden English is a creep who takes videos of himself singing half-naked and Rusev is an immature meathead, who won’t even let her wife explain her side. The way their segment ended was a bit awkward too, but I guess that’s intended to magnify the icky-ness of the storyline.

    But now that I know what actually happened in Milwaukee, the embargo will now take effect starting this week. Props to Aiden English for being such a showman. I’m sure you and Rusev will tear the house down on the next Kickoff Show.

    TruthTV may be long dead (or they’re probably working on a replacement), but the chemistry between R-Truth and Carmella is still off the charts. Although they lost in last week’s Mixed Match Challenge, Truth and Baby ‘Mella bounced back big time by beating SmackDown Live’s rising stars, Andrade “Cien” Almas and Zelina Vega. And it seems that the main weapon of babyface 'Mella is her patented Code of Silence and I’m loving it! I miss seeing it being applied out of nowhere the way Carmella locked it in on Vega. Redhead ‘Mella is a gift that keeps on giving.

    Aren’t you head over heels for this sadistic version of Randy Orton yet? You better be because he’s currently one of the best things on free WWE TV. Aside from being the venomous heel he has always wanted to be, he’s also elevating Tye Dillinger’s stock as a guy worthy of being destroyed. Orton’s attack on Tye’s middle finger made me cringe more than his attack on Jeff Hardy’s earlobe, mainly because I don’t even have a hole in my earlobe, but I do have a middle finger. And I like how Orton’s motivation was to stop Tye from doing his Perfect 10 bullcrap. I think Orton took an advanced course in Villainy 101 over these past few months.

    SMACKDOWN RUNDOWN: All roads lead to Australia as SmackDown Live sent their storylines off to Super Show-Down. Unlike last week’s explosive episode, this one was pretty tame and uneventful. What I enjoyed more was the effort Creative put in advancing the angles that won’t culminate on Australia this Saturday. SmackDown Live is finally getting the hang of things and I’m glad they’re using the show to its full extent to tell stories that are not exclusive for selling PPVs. For now, let’s give this episode a fair B.

    Some Blue Brand Blues That Didn’t Make It

    • I know it sounds like a stretch, but I really hope the IIconics win at Super Show-Down. It’s not just because of the hometown advantage. They’re far more entertaining than Naomi and Asuka are and it wouldn’t hurt if they throw Billie Kay and Peyton Royce a bone once in a while. On second thought, I don’t really mind if they lose. There are bigger fishes to fry; i.e., the rumored Women’s Tag Team Championships.
    • Man, what a rough send-off for The New Day and The Bar. Let’s just get this match over with already. I know they’re going to tear the house down in Australia but their segments were total borefests. And it’s not like the New Day will lose anyway, so we might as well call in the next challengers. Thanks. Edit: Mr. Bootyworth was actually Mick Foley's real-life son. Go figure.
    • Admit it, you were expecting Samoa Joe to attack AJ Styles inside his home. “AJ’s got a gun!” much? Also, I’m pretty sure the worst crime in WWE still goes to The Undertaker for drowning Paul Bearer in cement and hanging Big Boss Man in the middle of the ring. There’s no greater crime than killing people, you know. 
    Photos from WWE.com


    Ricky Jay Publico (@NitPickRick) is a wrestling fan who enjoys watching high flyers and brawlers battle it out in the ring. A frequent Botchamania binge-watcher, he claims to have memorized the chronological order of Royal Rumble winners, but fails to remember who won in 2004. He writes stories about life and nonsense.
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    Item Reviewed: SmackDown RunDown Live (10/2/18): Give Her Some Goddamn Respect! Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Ricky Jay Publico
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