Smackdown Thoughts & Review [December 30, 2011]


Goldust comes back! Elevator Action is in vogue. Daniel Bryan clowns Big Show! Hunico wrestles in Dickies. Orton and Wade beat the shit out of each other and so much more!

Indianapolis, IN

They open with a video package that highlights the Randy Orton-Wade Barrett feud.

Booker T is in the ring with a mic. Booker T recaps his year and thanks the fans for welcoming him at the Royal Rumble. He talks about his current stint as a WWE announcer and having to deal with TOOL every week. He goes on to talk about beating Cody Rhodes on Raw. Booker tries to bust his “can you dig this, suckaaaa” catch phrase but Cody interrupts.

Cody drops a huge turd on Indianapolis and talks about his accomplishments in 2011. Cody disses Booker T and calls him a “washed up announcer.” Booker disagrees and tells him that he should congratulate Booker.

Cody shakes Booker’s hand and then says Booker’s run is over. He says Booker is a nostalgia act and that his legacy is diminished. Cody tells Booker to go home.

Goldust’s music hits and Goldust Dustin Runnels comes out dressed in a very fly suit. Dustin tells Cody that he loves him and says he should respect Booker T. Dustin says Booker T helped him when he was going through hard times.

Cody says that he restored the Rhodes family name after Dustin “threw up” on it.

Booker T now comes to Dustin’s defense and suggests a rubber match for the IC title.

Cody agrees to it but makes it for next week. Cody then says Booker can then follow Dustin to irrelevancy.

Booker T says he’s going to become the new IC champ and then yells his catch phrase.

Cody cheap shots Dustin and then gives him a Beautiful Disaster kick.

~ Wow. This was excellent drama right here. I would say this was one of the best opening segments on Smackdown this year. I’m pretty stoked that Goldust is getting his dream match for Wrestlemania. Well, at least I think that’s where this is headed. I hope they can make this feud interesting over the span of three full months.

Jinder Mahal submits Ted DiBiase via Camel Clutch

~ Decent match but I’m a little surprised they jobbed DiBiase so soon since he’s been on a roll as of late. This match was better than expected but I attribute that to DiBiase’s involvement.

Maaaan. Jinder is the future of the WWE and I mean that in a bad way. He’s so cookie cutter-FCW style that it hurts to watch his matches. His movement reminds me of the cast of the first NXT season (except Daniel Bryan). Jinder is still a little green in my opinion.

They cut to some Teddy Long-Aksana garbage in his office with a cameo from Drew McIntyre. Teddy says that Drew makes too much money for his lack of success. Teddy also says that if Drew doesn’t get a victory, he might let him go.

~ This sucks. I thought I wouldn’t have to sit through another Drew McIntyre match ever again. Let’s hope he’s improved since his first stint on Smackdown.

Kaitlyn & Alicia Fox defeated Natalya & Tamina (via Alicia Fox’s Scissor Kick on Natalya)

  • After the match Tamina superkicked Natalya in disappointment. Then Tamina followed that up with a sick Superfly Splash. Dope!!!

~ Decent match that was longer than most Divas matches. Kaitlyn looked wonderful as always and I’m happy that Tamina got some shine in this match. If anything, I look forward to seeing a round robin set of matches between Tamina, Natalya and Beth Phoenix.

I wonder if I’m going to understand this push for Alicia Fox in the far future. Is Alicia Fox a future Diva’s legend and I just don’t know it yet?

Hunico w/ (Donny Marlow) Camacho pins Justin Gabriel via Swanton Bomb

~ Excellent but short match. Hunico is the truth. The dude’s moveset is a pleasure to watch and he seems to get better every week. It’s ironic to me that the talent the WWE had all along in FCW should have been Sin Cara. Hunico is very consistent in the ring and is definitely a top five high flyer in the WWE.

Wasn’t Justin Gabriel getting a push when they came back from the South Africa tour? That went quick.

Lord. Listening to TOOL discuss lowrider culture at the start of the match was painful.

Big Show pins David Otunga w/ Mark Henry via WMD KO punch

  • In the middle of the match, Daniel Bryan came down and baited Mark Henry up the match and away from the ring.

~ Decent squash. Big Show looked as good as ever and David Otunga has come a long way. Otunga won’t be Dean Malenko any time soon but he no longer looks awkward like he did in his rookie year. Otunga even pulled off a nice low level DDT.

The way Mark Henry was coaching David Otunga was entertaining. Mark Henry would be great manager material if and when he retires.

Ezekiel Jackson pins Drew McIntyre via rollup with tights

~ Decent match with both men showing some impressive offense. Drew took some nice bumps and did a textbook Northern Lights Suplex for two.

Is the illegal pin the beginning of a heel turn for Ezekial? I hope not. I think they should still see if Ezekial can connect with the crowd as a face.

I just don’t understand it when skilled big guys like Vladimir Kozlov and Ezekial Jackson never really gain traction in the WWE. Why not exploit and their strengths and hide their weaknesses?

They show Drew whining to Teddy. Teddy calls Drew a loser that makes excuses. Burn!

Sheamus Royal Rumble 2012 campaign promo

  • Sheamus says he’s going to win the Rumble. Hornswaggle comes out and disagrees and declares himself the future winner. Heath Slater interrupts and says that he’s the number one redhead and that he’s going to win the Rumble as well. Slater threatens to bash Hornswaggle but Sheamus throws Slater out of the ring.

~ Silly. This went all over the place from Journey and R. Kelly references to the Brooklyn Brawler. Don’t ask.

Sheamus pins Heath Slater via Brogue Kick

~ Total domination from Sheamus. Slater got in a slap, a knee, and a Russian Legsweep I think, but that’s about it. If there’s anybody that has any sort of momentum going into 2012, it’s Sheamus. Sheamus probably is your Royal Rumble winner in January.

They cut to Daniel Bryan and Big Show in Teddy’s office. Teddy Long announces Daniel Bryan vs. Big Show for the World Title next week. Big Show laughs it off but then Bryan says that at least his title reign will last longer than Big Show’s 45 seconds.

~ Fun segment. This is probably the beginning of Daniel Bryan’s heel turn…at least I hope so.

Wade Barrett fought Randy Orton to a no-contest in a Falls Count Anywhere Match

  • Barrett viciously threw Orton down the stairs and then walked out of the arena.

~ Very brutal match. Both men delivered serious ass whuppings on each other and should be rewarded for giving their all in this performance.

Production wise, this match was probably one of the most creatively shot matches in WWE history. There was a shot from the elevator “security camera” in black and white. Then the final moment of Barrett throwing Orton down the stairs was shot through a skinny window in the stairwell door. Really self-indulgent stuff here from the production crew and I loved every minute of it.

I just want to know who the was the hot blazing redhead that was getting out of the way when they got out of the elevator?

This was a pretty entertaining episode of Smackdown to send us into 2012. All the seeds for compelling storylines and new feuds are in place and I look forward to watching Smackdown next year.

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