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    Monday, August 30, 2021

    The SmackDown BreakDown (8/27/21): Becky with the Blue Belt

    Becky Lynch on SmackDown as the Women's Champion. I didn't know Christmas arrived way too early this year. I'm Ricky Publico, and this is another late edition of the SmackDown BreakDown. 

    Becky Lynch is back! While it wasn't as impactful or iconic as CM Punk's return, the fact that The Man came back and chose to be part of the Blue Brand when everyone was expecting her to fix the women's division on RAW energized me more to write SmackDown reviews. And did I mention Brock Lesnar is now back as an inactive member of the SmackDown roster as well? If you need more proof that SmackDown is now the A-show in WWE, then two big names in the industry should be enough.

    I don't even care if these returns were a desperate attempt to match AEW's latest signee. If anything, it only adds to the magnitude of CM Punk's return. WWE had to bring out the big guns just to prove to anyone that they can also move the needle when they want to. That's why I wasn't that mad about Becky Lynch dethroning Bianca Belair in mere 26 seconds just to make her return a little bit extra. WWE had to shock everyone somehow and having Becky walk out and stare at Bianca just wasn't enough. 

    Unlike Kofi Kingston in 2019, at least they didn't set Bianca Belair aside for another big name contender. But let's talk about the opening segment for a bit. Despite the rumor that Becky Lynch is supposed to be a heel, Becky's opening promo said otherwise. C'mon, people, this was basically the same Becky Lynch we all know and love. And we're supposed to boo her in the coming weeks? Since we can't really trust Creative to book character alignments properly, I expect Becky to continue being The Man because they couldn't possibly make her hateable than she already isn't.

    And thankfully, Bianca Belair came out to try and pick up where we left off. I appreciate how the commentary team tried to explain how she was unprepared for Becky Lynch and how smart Becky was to go for the quick knockout in an attempt to appease the people who hated the title change at SummerSlam. With her losing the title, I really hope they stop treating Bianca Belair like a clueless rookie and start painting her as the fighting machine that she should be. In fact, they are already on the right track by having her needlessly beat three more women for her title rematch.

    We even got a great opening match out of it when Bianca Belair and Liv Morgan squared off as the final two of the fatal four-way elimination match. I was expecting Bianca to score all the pinfalls but I guess there's no harm in throwing Liv Morgan a win. She also did a great job selling for Bianca as this final confrontation boosted both fo their stocks as the brand's only babyfaces. The crowd was also loving Liv as the underdog but in the end, Bianca Belair still came out on top. That's enough proof for me that her quick loss at SummerSlam wasn't all for nothing. Get hyped! 

    Enough about Becky with the blue belt, it's time for some Tribal Chief talk. No Brock Lesnar this week, but there's also no confrontation between Roman Reigns and Paul Heyman. It's a good thing they didn't try to cram them into an already loaded episode. That means we're in for more weeks of possibly killer promos between Roman Reigns, Paul Heyman, and Brock Lesnar (hopefully). Instead, we got the return of Finn Balor! He's finally getting the title match he deserves and that's just cool.

    But let's be honest, Finn Balor ain't winning the title next week, so let's continue speculating on how they're going to build up Roman Reigns vs. Brock Lesnar VII. Will a babyface Brock Lesnar even work in 2021? It's really hard not to think that Heyman wouldn't align with Brock and I'm glad they're adding this as a storyline wrinkle. This could very well be a setup for the Roman Reigns face turn WWE has been clamoring for, but I really hope they don't pull that trigger just yet. Let Roman Reigns be cool for a few more years, at least. I don't even know he would look like as a good guy.

    FINAL BREAKDOWN: Becky Lynch is back so how else can last week's episode be bad? Kidding aside, this week's episode was a good follow-up to SummerSlam. New storylines are formed, subtle seeds are planted, and Naomi is back, too! Did I forget to mention? Of course, it won't be SmackDown without the nonsensical rematches, but I guess that's just the norm in this new WWE. 

    Show Grade: B

    BreakDown Thoughts That Are Still Sad and Broke

    • So Baron Corbin is rich again. What's the difference between now and his gimmick before he was sad again? I don't even care anymore. At least Big E has someone to feud with while he's keeping the MITB briefcase warm. 

    • I'm totally all in with this impending Rey and Dominik Mysterio break-up. Nevermind the story, just imagine how cool it would be to see the two of them flying around in the ring against each other. Acutally, scratch that—the story totally matters and I'm glad they're going with the simple route of rebelling kid vs. protective dad. It's not like we get this kind of storylines on a regular basis. Actually, when's the last time a father and son became rivals in WWE? The latest I could think of was Vince McMahon vs. Shane McMahon. Wild. 

    • So Cesaro is back feuding with Alpha Academy? Great. I wonder if the powers that be are still high on Cesaro as a singles star. The fact that he's nowhere near the Intercontinental Championship scene isn't giving me high hopes.

    • Yo, get well soon, Pat McAfee. I certainly missed his brand of enthusiasm in last week's episode. Good thing Kevin Owens was there to make the bland team of Michael Cole and Corey Graves more palatable. Or is this just KO paying homage to his former best friend Chris Jericho who is currently transitioning into a commentary role in AEW? That's just sweet. 
    Header image taken from WWE.com

    *****

    Ricky Publico (@nyamnyamgarbage) is Smark Henry's seasoned veteran and resident SmackDown reviewer. He's a sucker for well-written promos and fast-paced matches. While he enjoys nitpicking shows, he now prefers enjoying wrestling for what it is instead of stressing himself over things he can't control. He's anxious about the future, now more than ever. His potential haunts him.

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    Item Reviewed: The SmackDown BreakDown (8/27/21): Becky with the Blue Belt Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Ricky Jay Publico
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