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Join Date: Feb 2007
Re: Being The Booker
Wolf Beast's SummerSlam
I hadn't forgotten about this, it's just you posted the show right at the start of my exam season. And I had to finish uni before getting around to this. Anyway, onto it...
Opening video felt very sentimental, touching on some of those great SummerSlam moments of the past. SummerSlam 1991 was always one of my favourite shows as a child, so I was delighted to see the inclusion of Bret beating Perfect and the Savage wedding. I also didn't have a clue what you were on about with the Goldberg/Angle match from 2004, until I realised that was one of yours!
Strong choice for the opener really, especially with the rise of both men through the duration of this thread, especially London, as allowing him to kick off such a high profile pay per view as this really shows how far he's come in this thread. I'm not really that sure about MVP wearing the Scotland jersey would have gotten you the level of heat you were looking for. Having been to several of the NFL games played at Wembley, events such as these tend to draw fans from all over the UK and Europe, and I don't think it would really have drawn that many boos. But anyway, the match itself. I thought it was interesting that the opening seemed very much back and forth instead of the usual face dominating the early proceedings, and I liked the fact you emphasised the crowd's response to this, as I'm sure it would have been very boisterous at such an early stage of the broadcast. Some nice psychology with the targeting of the arm, with plenty of damage being done before we moved onto the armbar. That all seemed to give the match a nice flow to it. A very believable near fall with the drive-by kick, definitely could have been over there and then. One thing I didn't like is that I would have liked one more rally sequence before we headed to the corner. Just one more near fall from London, perhaps something where the bad arm meant he took too long to go for the pin, just that little bit of extra drama before the finish would have really topped things off. But yeah, certainly the right choice to have London go over, and a real fan friendly win to kick off the big show. And I'm pretty sure Heyman has it right, this isn't the last we'll see of these two in the ring together.
It's the little touches that make all the difference isn't it? Nice work with the taxi and the family in tow, really gave a certain sense of humbleness to Hatton. Nice little dig from Coach too with the fat-man line.
I dunno why since it wasn't particularly long, but that Regal interview really tugged on the old heart strings. A real sense of emotion and homecoming for Regal. I didn't think he'd win, as it felt like the only reason he was in the match was so we didn't get a Shelton/Hardy rematch. But now... I could see it.
OK, with Regal taken out of it, now I can definitely see him winning. The match seemed kinda flat without Regal, besides the side effect and superplex spots, but the action after Regal returned was much better. Poor Matt though, he was pretty much relegated to spoiler for the rest of the match. The amount of times I've changed my mind on who's gonna win is getting kinda ridiculous, as I could've easily seen the early attack used as a way for Regal to save face in defeat, with Benjamin getting some real big heat by leaving with the title. And I thought that was exactly where you were going after the paydirt spot. But credit to you, you old romantic, you stuck with it and it's yet another feel good moment for the London crowd. I can't see Regal holding the gold for very long tbh, as he hasn't exactly done much for you lately, but on this night, this was a nice way to give a pat on the back for his years of service. It also gives plenty of options as to what you do with Benjamin and Hardy moving forward.
Pretty standard Cyber Sunday video, seemed to tick all the boxes. Interested to see how you get the fans voting gimmick across though. Quick check of RVD, and we're off to another video. One thing the highlights of the tournament reminds of is that despite the video hyping his debut, you really haven't done a whole lot with Evan Bourne.
Hmmm... I'm kinda not happy with the way you've booked the title match. I realise that heels will be heels, and this certainly would've gotten AMW a shit load of heat. But... after the self admission from yourself that the tag division on Smackdown was lacking, and the relative success of the tournament, and the brilliant progression week-by-week of Harris and Storm getting out of shape, surely this had to end in a win for the Connection? Hell, even a win in the same length of time would've made sense to me. Give the arrogant heels their comeuppance, and then moving forward have them get in shape and say tonight was a fluke. Then when you have Carlito and Kofi defend the belts, there's no more questions to be asked. But this... I dunno. While a smart move for gathering heat, I just feel that after all the build, this didn't live up to it. Sorry.
Back to the good stuff with Trips and Kennedy. This is certainly something you've been brewing for a while, and with Kennedy and Triple H both having had a shot at Christian and the gold, it would make sense to pair them off against each other. Would be very interesting to see how you'd pull off the Trips face turn though.
Given the very personal nature of the feud, and the fact you hyped up how personal it was, it made perfect sense for Rey to get the jump on Angle. It was however rather refreshing to see such an aggressive side from Rey, as he's never been much of a brawler really, but you certainly committed to that early on. Surprised to see so may painful spots so early, with Angle wasting little time with the over head to the outside, then the lawndart. You also seemed to stray from the norm with Angle too, as there seemed periods of concentrated attacks on the head, then the back then the midsection before the leg. The mask and ankle lock spots in the middle of the match suggests both will be repeated later. Indeed, that was pretty creative how you transitioned into the second ankle lock. The finish worked for me on two levels, showing a real sense of desperation for Angle to win, yet it was almost like heartbreak for Mysterio as he's forced to choose between his heritage and getting the win. Overall, a very good match, certainly very creative in the way that both men seemed to use a different style that what we're used to seeing from them at certain points, yet still managed to pull out their traditional moveset. And the ending was really well written, couldn't fault that at all. Good stuff here. Angle and Christian seems like a logical step going forward. And Coach was pretty awesome in the post match.
The opening to Taker/Edge certainly fit the build up, with Taker rightfully so dominating the early proceedings. For every chink of light Edge saw, it was quickly snuffed out again with Taker regaining control, which again really bought into the story of the build. The start of the match has certainly been booked well, so props for this. Indeed, this very much seems the story as the match progresses, with Edge slowly gaining more and more control, only for Taker to keep bringing it back, especially emphasised with the triangle choke spot. Interesting that you would have Edge target the leg like this, as he's not exactly known for his leg submission moves, but the use of the figure four on the ringpost was spot on. Such a great spot, but I'd have liked a little more description of the pain and anguish that hold can bring, especially from The Deadman as a way of really putting over Edge's offence. Wow... chokeslam out of nowhere pretty much straight after it. And tbh, I felt the momentum shifted back to Edge a wee bit too quickly. I'd have liked one more impact move from Taker before Edge got the counter. Holy crap at the finish. Spear – no. Tombstone – no!? Spear – yes! Wow. Clean as a whistle too. Shocked by that tbh, but it certainly does a whole heap for Edge going forward. A pretty enjoyable match, the first half really told the story of the feud, and the second half was wild, perhaps a little bit lacking in selling, but certainly a shocking ending. Impressive, but where does Taker go from here? That wasn't the kinda defeat that makes me think he'll disappear again, so I wonder what you'll do with him going forward.
Nice touch with the week in the UK video, and having seen Ricky Hatton on Soccer AM in the past, I'm sure he and Christian would've done well. And for some reason, I really wanna know the score of the game of fives. And also pretty cool to see Davey Boy Smith inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Now this has some serious potential to steal the show, and it's clearly gonna be a fast paced match with how early the ladders were being used as weapons. And we're also crashing through tables early doors too! Some really crazy spots, but through it all, that double shining wizard somehow managed to stand out for me. Sounded absolutely brutal. As did that powerbomb through the table on the floor. Honestly man, this match was absolutely crazy, with so many big spots, I was quite glad to see the sight of Melina and The Entourage, as it almost served as a way for things to calm down a bit. Holy shit, this match is mayhem as The Lions and Gail Kim (should it not have been Katie Lea?) get involved. The supporting cast hung around just a bit too long for my liking, as while I understand you wanted Hawkins, Ryder, Smith and Burchill to suffer their own spots, it kinda distracted from the seriousness of the feud for longer than it needed to. But yeah, that's just a personal preference, but I was glad to see them all taken out of it while we got back to business. And well done, despite all the carnage we'd seen, you defo managed to top that with that final table spot. Honestly, this was such a fun match to read, total chaos throughout, and despite the fact that the interuptions lasted a little longer than I liked, this is defo match of the night thus far.
Ha, what a sneaky bastard Bischoff is, taken Edge, Haas and Albright back to Raw with him. I'm gonna assume we'll see Straight Edge and the Craftsman go at it... and maybe even Edge v Christian for the title?! Yes plz.
Interesting opening to the Cena/Kennedy match, with Cena almost out-wrestling Kennedy and frustrating him in the process. Miz has certainly been a surprise with how he's been involved in this feud, as for me, a character like Kennedy's would find Miz annoying as hell, especially during his hoo-rah phase. But I guess flattery always wins out. Anyway, Cena saves a little bit of face as Miz makes his presence felt, but I liked the fact you had Cena take him out of things relatively early. Let's get the focus squarely on the personal rivalry of the two. Nice bit of old school wrasslin' with the sleeper hold, and it was a nice kinda transition between the start and ending of the match. Interesting that you alluded to the fact that Cena had been involved in a submission match the previous month, then spent so much time with either man in submission holds during this match. Neither man seems to be going down to an impact finisher, so of course there are kick outs from the mic check and the FU. While I can see Kennedy surviving the STFU, I think to really get across the desperateness of the Cena and the situation, you should have had Cena hold the submission until 4 of a 5 count. That would have really gotten over the struggles Cena was having to put Kennedy away And wow again, Cena taps for the second straight show, albeit the camera shot saves face a little bit. Lol at the bit with the fan, even the kids are turning their backs on him now. Heel turn seems inevitable now, especially if the one constant Cena has always had going for him, the support of the kids, is now gone. While Kennedy merges with a big win, one that sets him up nicely for a possible feud with Triple H, Cena has a real excuse to turn heel now with the fans literally turning their back on him. Such a subtle thing to do, even in the over the top fashion you did it in (does that even make sense?), but it really spoke volumes. So many possibilities as to where you can take Cena's character, and I'm really looking forward to seeing what you do with him.
I was pretty taken aback by how much Triple H dominated the early moments, as despite the injured ribs, I expected Lesnar to come out all guns blazing before the ribs became a factor. And blood so early in another surprise, even more so that it's Lesnar. I really saw this one going the other way, with Lesnar taking control before he was stopped, so I'll give you credit for catching me off guard with this. Wow, the equalizer comes in the form of a barbed wire 2x4. Interesting choice, although surely the sledgehammer has role to play at some point. Damn, that spinebuster through the barricade sounded absolutely brutal. And still the punishment continues with the DDT onto the chair. At this point I figured you were building towards Lesnar having no option but to stay down, and tbh after the amount of punishment he took, the comeback seemed a little far fetched, especially when you consider the fact that despite all that, Lesnar denied himself a 3 count when the match seemed won. Finally it's over after the F5, but I really think this has done some serious damage to Triple H's standing. Granted Lesnar looks beastly, and he'll certainly remain a big player over on Smackdown, but now where do you go with Trips? A long vacation I presume? Granted this was a brutal, bloody affair, but I just get this nagging feeling that Triple H should've took this one, especially with the injuries Lesnar had going in. It would've gave Trips a win to even the score, setting you up for a rubber match. Great action, some sick spots, but I'm intrigued as to where you take both men from here. I'm sure you'll have something grand in mind, but right now I'm drawing blanks.
Certainly no surprise that Beth won, and of course Mickie has the easy out due to her injuries. Again, I'd question weather this really fit the tremendous build up it received going in. The whole storyline between Beth and Mickie was great stuff, and this perhaps sold it a little short. I'm sure there'll be some sort of rematch though. As for this match, short but sweet, and you certainly packed plenty of action into those four minutes, with some very believable surprise near falls for Mickie. But certainly the right diva left with the gold.
While previous matches you've kinda strayed from the norm for openings, this one went pretty much as expected with the vengeful Van Dam taking the fight to Orton early, that made a lot of sense. I thought the way you portrayed the more methodical side of Orton was nicely done, especially with the way the emphasis of the attack was placed at the head. Some nice psychology there. At time though that methodical attack of a heel Orton can be quite boring to read, but there was enough spots to maintain a level of excitement. Wasn't all that sure about the use of a second sleeper given the use of it earlier during the Cena/Kennedy match, perhaps coulda went for something different in either of the matches. I liked the duelling hangman DDT's, although for ture poetic justice surely Van Dam should have went for the punt at some point? Or perhaps that would've been too heelish for him? Either way, the ending sounded pretty sweet, with Orton finally putting this feud to bed. Aside from the odd thing I mentioned above, this was another fine match. Maybe not quite as dramatic as previous efforts, but good all the same. The pre and post match bits suggest Jericho could his next challenger, but the question has to be... when do we get Orton/Flair? Must be on the cards surely?
And onto the main event. Loved how straight off the bat you set the theme for the match straight from the get go with the description of both men being so serious in their entrances. I dunno why, but that small touch really struck with me about the severity of the situation for the champion. And that continued with the early dodges from Christian, such a contrast to his usual confident self. ‘Mags so dominant so early was to be expected, but the level of which it happened wasn’t quite as, and I’m a little taken aback at how little of the early goings Christian had. And even when he does get in some attack, Umaga simply plucks him out the air and drives him to the floor. Brutal stuff. Bold of you to write the match like this, especially since it took such a long time for the champion to finally have a sustained attack, pretty brave writing a main event like that but for the two characters involved in kinda worked. The ref bump being used to the faces advantage is another stray from the norm, but again, it lent itself to the situation very nicely, as the table spot allows for a much more even ending to the match, so that was very nicely booked. Loved the use of JR here, some really nice lines to really get across how beastly Umaga is looking. Three unpretiers unanswered was just a tad uninspiring, perhaps you could’ve went for a total shocking power move from Umaga inbetween the second and third, with a close as hell near fall on Christian. That would’ve paced the drama of the finish to perfection imo. But it was great for what it was, finally the beast has been slayed, Christian looks a million dollars, and it was a very dramatic and exciting way to close off the show.
Overall, a great show. Really terrific stuff, very enjoyable to read. Obviously I took serious issue with the Smackdown tag title situation (despite fully understanding where you were coming from with it), but apart from that, it was really only small personal preferences that I disagreed with. It was seriously good stuff, you could have easily written ‘WrestleMania’ at the top of the show and it wouldn’t have looked out of place. Plenty of good booking decisions too, with a lot of interesting directions to head in with the big characters, especially Cena. Great stuff, let’s hope you’re back soon to continue the story.