Cody Rhodes’ Very Bad Things: Raw Regurgitated, 9/2

Wow, did Randy Orton wake up feeling extra coherent today? This promo is articulate, to the point that it doesn’t sound like, well, a Randy Orton promo.

JBL as Jesse Ventura/Eric Bischoff during this reign of terror by The Better for Business Bureau has developed into a Don West character. Good heel Don West, not literally every other part of his entire career.

For anyone to watch this opening segment and worry about whether or not Daniel Bryan will eventually get over on Orton/H is either depressingly naive or even more depressingly cynical. It’s obvious that they’ll let him win the title. How else is Triple H going to go over him for the WWE Championship and have it make sense?

***

If Cody Rhodes gets Syxx’d by H, fans should start to worry, but good for him getting this shot. He’s already on his way to being crazy over, so being thrust in a main event, even if it’s only as a step above canon fodder right now, is the best thing that could possibly happen to him. One only hopes that Damien Sandow doesn’t get left behind with all this losing he’s been doing.

***

The Miz has turned into an interesting wrestler. Not a good one, but an interesting one. While this match was no great shakes, the crowd was definitely into it and it told a good if predictable story. Solid, if not great, feuds like this — your D’Lo vs. Val Venis level mid-card noise — is the difference between a good era and a GREAT era, which it looks like this is shaping up to be.

Hopefully, this weird conspiracy theorist Booker T character turns into survivalist Booker T, and he starts looking like post-retirement Shawn Michaels.

Who is going to cash in on this Ambrose-Ziggler hit?

Oh, hello Ryback. Good to see you not let the pile of dirt on top of you keep you down.

***

Everyone is aware that this Big Show/Better for Business Bureau is just a rehash of the HBK-JBL storyline. Which is true, but this is taking place in the context of a much larger story. Of course someone was going to be put up to something they didn’t want to do because they were broke, and if it happens to be the guy with ham-sized fists, then so be it. And congratulations on Stephanie for finally taking that masterclass in heeldom. This is the meanest hug in the history of wrestling:

Also, serious question from Andy: When are the WWE, ROH and TNA going to start a class action lawsuit against Big Lots? How many of these cheap ass catering tables have to break before someone does something.

Wow. Uh. Bray Wyatt is The Truth.

***

Cody Rhodes playing Steamboat to Orton’s Flair is never going to get old (for me). Staring up at those lights so much is probably not the best for Cody, but everybody has to make sacrifices.

Is Orton trying to get the RKO not over? That will literally never happen. But if he’s trying to get wildly booed for it, and is prepping the crowd for when he tries to do the snake thing against Daniel Bryan, then yes keep doing that.

JBL playing the role of — and this is a line from Michael Cole — of press secretary for The Administration adds a weird political wrinkle, but (and I literally can’t believe I’m saying this) if anyone can keep up with JBL it’s Cole. Bradshaw repeatedly saying “we wish Cody well” with all future endeavors implied while Cole asks him “Seriously, dude, WTF?” is as good as we are going to get on commentary in 2013 (take that how you will). That Jerry Lawler is the voice of reason in this whole deal is really the only downside. Where’s (and I literally can’t believe I’m saying this) Alex Riley when you need him?

***

***YOU ARE NOW ENTERING WRESTLING NERD DISCUSSION*** ***PLEASE KEEP YOUR EYES AND EARS INSIDE OF KAYFABE*** CM Punk being able to exist in a world outside the main story arc will hopefully extend beyond this whole “Triple H really hates Paul Heyman” part. Having main eventers of Punk’s caliber standing outside of such an all-encompassing storyline are exactly how you avoid turning into late-period nWo. Like multiple revenue streams, having multiple ways to make guys (in this case, CM Punk making Curtis Axel) is as important as picking the right guys to give the push in the main storyline. Along with the almost official Intercontinental Championship-ification of the World Heavyweight Championship (as always, that’s meant in the best way possible), giving guys things to do where they don’t have to be shoehorned into one mega-storyline is really what’s “best for business”. *** YOU ARE NOW EXITING A WRESTLING NERD DISCUSSION*** ***PLEASE ENJOY YOUR COMPLIMENTARY SONIC MILKSHAKE ON YOUR WAY OUT***

For a guy as intentionally erudite as CM Punk, he does a Dusty Rhodes-level common man promo.

***

What a terrible shit show that three-way Diva’s match was. It’s like they were struggling to agree on the rules of House, but in a wrestling ring.

Speaking of shitshows, it’s clear at this point that Ricardo Rodriguez needed those fat burners for medical reasons. Or, he’s been hanging out too much with RVD in his “super chill van”.

Alberto Del Rio dressing in grey is completing our dream of him being renamed Bruce and turning into the spanish version of Shark Boy. But in a good way.

***

Hopefully everyone appreciates how good that Cody Rhodes promo was. The term Reality Era gets thrown around a lot, but I’ve always preferred the Universe Era. Cody Rhodes isn’t telling the “Truth” as much as he’s telling the Universe’s version of “Truth”. They’ve created a comic book world, where Dustin Rhodes went insane after being made to do the Golddust gimmick and Dusty Rhodes isn’t a Hall of Famer whose been employed by the company for the last decade. These aren’t “facts”, but are the facts being presented as “facts” in the WWE Universe. That’s as kayfabe as you can get, just updated for the internet. Also, seriously, Cody Rhodes fiancee is STUNNING, so I’m sure he’d be fine going home to her, regardless. God bless him.

***

It’s hard to say how this match played out in the arena, but from a purely storytelling perspective, this told said a lot about how there is to love about Daniel Bryan and the credit they deserve for giving him the keys to the SuperFace Mobile. Even better, this is exactly the type of story that you can’t do with someone like John Cena, he’s too big and too strong for something like “Giant Dude Reluctantly Destroys You” to work. But with someone as talented in the ring (and on the mic) as Bryan, they can overcome the inherent “you look like a weakling”-ness of him getting destroyed by a giant through things like “heart” and “perseverance” and “hustle, loyalty and/or respect”.

This “new” Triple H entrance song is the most on-the-nose theme since “I’m an Assman” turned into the Billy and Chuck gimmick.

I had forgotten Paul’s name was Paul until Paul mentioned that Paul’s name was Paul.

Could Randy Orton put some pants on? He’s already wrestled. Did he not shower after?

Did anyone else get the feeling that Randy Orton got all the way down to the ring before he realized that he had forgotten his spray paint, then just improvised the “standing on Daniel Bryan with one foot” bit?

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