Home | Columns & Rants | Satire | Entertainment | Media | Archives | Forum


by Malcolm Not in the Middle

February 1, 2011

Hey guys, and welcome to a post Royal Rumble edition of the Rant. BTW, what a Royal Rumble it was. Perfect no, but any WWE PPV you can walk away from and not feel jipped is a good one… okay, paying $55 for a PPV is BS, but I gather you know what I mean.

For our opening rant, we'll focus on number one contender for the WWE Title… Jerry Lawler. Honestly people, you have no idea how depressing it is to type that. I have to ask… WTF WWE? When did WWE turn into WCW? Okay, that's a little strong… But Jerry Lawler out of everyone on the roster? Really?

Looking at the Elimination Chamber so far… its like WWE is TRYING to make a PPV that I would have no interest in buying. So the World Title match is Lawler vs. Miz for the belt. Does anyone really think WWE is stupid enough to have Lawler as champion heading into Wrestlemania? Fuck, even if something like that goes down, I'll guarantee Lawler loses it the next night on RAW… but no, they wouldn't do that to the Miz as that would kill the character. Plus the overwhelming fact that Lawler headlining Wrestlemania as WWE Champion is FUCKING STUPID! So its obvious that Miz is going to win. Thanks to this, the fucking Elimination chamber is given away too. They've been building up Cena/Miz for sometime now… its pretty f'ing clear who's winning there. That's basically both their main events revealed… Oh yes, I sure am dropping down $45 bucks for this.

Now, I understood the purpose of this feud. It was thanks to Miz's match with Lawler that gave birth to Miz's "Beatable Heel champion" gimmick; since Miz had such a hard time beating an announcer, then he must suck. So it worked, it launched Miz rather nicely… but then it kept going. WTF Creative, why are you convinced I want to see Lawler fight for the title!? Is this legit? Do people really want this? A predictable, boring lead-in to Wrestlemania? Oh you know what's going to be really awesome? You know how for matches at PPVs, they maybe get maybe a ten-minute or so segment on the show? Lawler and Cole are the announcers on RAW. Which means RAW has effectively turned into a 2-hour advertisement for the match. How awesome is that?

So boo WWE. Boo to hands down the worst idea for a main event for a PPV that I've ever seen… which brings me today's OFF Topic theme, wrestler's who would have been infinitely better opponents for Miz instead of Jerry Lawler. Fucking hell…

No mailbag this week, as the focus will be on the Rumble. As of me writing this, there is no one to recap the entire show. If I had the whole thing recorded, I might be up for it, as I lack the memory for exact play by play for each match, but I can give you my thoughts on the matches instead. Till then, let's start the rant.

Standard opening starts us off, though I did notice something. Did you know that every time a Pro or Rookie switches, they fixed the graphic in the opening accordingly? Granted not that important, but I appreciate the attention to detail. Especially considering this is NXT we are talking about here.

We start with Striker in the ring, which leads us to our standard default opening. However, he does tell us that next week's show will be an elimination, and the polls open tomorrow at noon. I know everyone here is waiting with baited breath, I'm sure. The Rookies and their Pros gather in the ring, minus Alberto Del Rio. As Ricardo Rodriguez explains, Alberto is emotionally spent after winning the Royal Rumble, and is taking some time off, and says Brodus will have him in his corner tonight. And yes, Ricardo said all that in English. Brodus, btw, looked absolutely thrilled about that… sarcasm.

Without further ado, Striker takes us into the first challenge:


Love the challenges that are so easily explained, all I need to do to effectively recap them is just say who won. Tournament style Arm Wrestling Tourney. You win, you move on. Winner gets 3 points toward immunity.


WINNER: Johnny Curtis is record time


Brodus Clay is so heavily favored, its not even funny. Bateman does a pretty funny bit here as he tells Daniel to slap him, which he eventually does, and tells him to do it over and over. This rallies up Bateman to take on the monster with intensity!

WINNER: Brodus Clay

Well, least he was funny.


Brodus much had this,… till he decided to headbutt Curtis. The ref saw this and then promptly DQ'd Brodus.

WINNER: Johnny Curtis

So wait a minute… So Curtis can punch Brodus in the face and win a promo contest… but Brodus went too far using a headbutt in an arm wrestling contest? Man it sucks to be Brodus. And poor Brodus just lost the only Challenge he had a chance in hell of winning. Sucks to be him.

We are threatened with a rematch between Chris Masters and Bryon Saxton as we head to commercials.

OFF TOPIC: Daniel Bryan. Remember that hot feud him and Miz had over the US Title? (A belt Bryan still has?) Remember how Bryan beat Miz not once but twice? How the hell has this been completely forgotten since Miz became champion? This seemed like a no brainer, or should have at least been a Miz's first title defense! How the hell has Bryan been depushed seemingly since winning the belt?! Fucking creative!!!

We are back and we are thrown violently into this match!


Highlight (unfortunately) about this match is Todd Grisham and Josh Matthews revealing themselves to be morons, as they can't remember how Saxton got Ziggler as a Pro again. Fuck, maybe I could be a WWE announcer? ~_~;;;

Anyway, if you were expecting Bryon to look good heading into the next elimination, you've forgotten how WWE does things. He's destroyed by WWE Superstars World Champion Masters, till finally being knocked out by the Masterlock

WINNER: Chris Masters

Wow… I honestly think this match did neither of these guys any favors. Aside from proving that Saxton sucks, that is. We go to the back, were Daniel Bryan is again trying to teach Derrick Bateman some submission moves. Gail Kim arrives, and it looks like they maybe doing a kind of "3rd wheel" gimmick with Bateman. Daniel tries to get Bateman to get some pointers from Gail, saying she's awesome at submission wrestling (completely true, btw) though Derrick doesn't believe it. So he dares Gail to put him in a Guillotine, and prove she's good. She does, and Bateman passes out for comedic effect. To celebrate, Bryan and Kim make out over Derrick's fallen body, who gives the makeout session a thumbs up. So far, like Gail Kim a lot better than the Bellas.

We are now threatened with Brodus Clay vs. Ted Dibiase… as we head t commercials.

OFF TOPIC: John Morrison. Hey! Remember that kickass match Miz/Morrison had awhile ago? Good cause WWE forgot. The match was awesome, and Morrison has really been on fire. If the WWE was hell-bent on taking a chance a the PPV, why couldn't go to Morrison?!


We get a recap of the events that lead to Brodus dropping Ted in favor of Alberto Del Rio. Can't really complain about his choice personally. Ted comes to the ring without Maryse, thus continuing the storyline from RAW. For those who don't know what I'm talking about, YOU SHOULD CHECK OUT THIS WEEK BEST DAMN RAW RANT, PERIOD!

Anyway, a very physical and (surprisingly) back and forth match between the two. No joke, they really took it to each other. Though the weird thing about this match is Maryse… who I'm not entirely sure wasn't high. She skips about the ring, shakes Todd's hand, gives him her phone number, goes to kiss Todd… but then slaps him in the face. In between this, we have some very physical wrestling by Ted and Brodus, so it's a very surreal combo. Finally, Ted gets distracted by Maryse long enough for Brodus to hit a 400 lb powerslam for the win. Really this match has to be seen.

WINNER: Brodus Clay

Happy to see the up and comer go over the midcarder no one cares about. We go to the back… for a Saxton/Curtis promo? Saxton says people have been talking behind his back, and saying he has a big head… to which he agrees, saying his head is rather large… the hell!?

OFF TOPIC: Darren Young. Think about it, we could have this match after Cena wins the elimination chamber, and Miz can start training for Cena for Wrestlemania. So his first bit of training could be fighting the failed Cena clone! Is this stupid? YES! But still better than Lawler!

We come back and… crap, its only 10:30? We come back for another challenge. This one is an old "classic", the… Talk the Talk challenge, a challenge that doesn't include actually talking the talk. The Rookies are all given a subject, and then given 10-20 seconds to cut a promo on it. WWE Universe chooses the winner, so you know Brodus and Saxton have no fucking chance here.


Byron Saxton: In an attempt to not be stupid this year, all the topics for the promos are Pros that are on NXT… but don't worry, the Rookies find ways to be stupid. Starting with Saxton, who got R Truth. He does Truth but cutting a rap… that ain't going to help with those "Carlton" chants that he tends to get. He finishes by yelling whats up… Which some of the crowd does say it back… even (technically) R Truth… so does that mean it worked?

Derrick Bateman: He gets Dolph Ziggler, and they have a pretty funny exchange right off the bat

DB: Dolph Ziggler! The fastest rising star of the WWE!!!
DZ: Dude, I've been here 6 years. That's not really a fast rise…

He then proceeds to say Ziggler has a face like a catcher's mitt (which Dolph is nice enough to flip out for), and revealed that his real name is actually Turd Ferguson. Luckily for Bateman, no one in the arena apparently remembers that Jeopardy sketch, and a huge Turd Ferguson chant rings out.

Johnny Curtis: His promo is supposed to be Chris Masters, but ends up slapping Brodus in the face, and hiding with the announcers. Once again, he not DQ'd for this. Though to be fair, the hell are you supposed to cut an exciting promo about Chris Masters?

Brodus Clay: I have a challenge for my readers. Brodus basically rips off a line from a famous movie in his promo on Daniel Bryan, which goes something like: "I'd like to talk to Gail Kim. Since you're man here ain't got no heart, maybe you'd like to see a real man. Yeah, I bet you stay up all night dreamin' about a real man, don't ya? Well I tell you what. Why don't you bring your pretty little self over to my apartment tonight, and I'll show you a real man." What film is he pretty much ripping off here? Twitter or email me for a mention next week.

And… yeah, it's not really close as to the winner.

WINNER: Derrick Bateman

Derrick gets two points, but Curtis still leads with three. We go from here the trailer for Chaperone, which we should get used to as I'm sure we're going to see the whole thing on every show from now on. How's it look? Imagine an action comedy… starring Triple H as pretty much Triple H… but the acting is even worse.

We are threatened with a tag of Daniel Bryan & Derrick Bateman vs. R Truth & Johnny Curtis. But first, some commercials!

OFF TOPIC: Justin Roberts. Because if Miz has to wrestle an announcer, it may as well be someone I like!


Pretty much a by the numbers affair here, with each team trading headlocks and shoulderblocks. Before we cut to commercials, Bateman and Curtis take a tumble outside and brawl, causing Truth and Bryan to run over to separate them. The thing is, the Pro's look so concerned as they do this, as if they are taking they are being too physical… in a wrestling match. ~_~;;;

OFF TOPIC: Randy Orton. Yes, I'd rather see Orton get a 4th shot at the title, then see Lawler in the main event.

We're back, in time for the announcers to remind us how stupid they are, as Josh Matthews has forgotten how voting works, and Todd believes NXT has gone on for 4 years… yeah; maybe I should fill out an application for WWE….

Anyway, long story short Truth takes Bateman outside, leaving Curtis with Bryan. He for his Flying Legdrop but misses, and allows Bryan to counter into a LaBell Lock for the tapout.


With that, it brings our show to a close… which bring me to:


Like I said earlier, this PPV wasn't bad. Adding another 10 guys to the match worked, and I hope they continue this from here on. For the most part, everyone had a moment to shine and looked good. There were some exceptions yes, but I'll get them in a second. But the show as a whole was okay. The 1992 show is still the greatest, but this one wasn't bad.

The matches… personally I felt they depended a little too much on the fact that they were sharing a PPV with the Royal Rumble. None of the matches were really fantastic, and worst yet, the endings made no real sense, but more on that in a second. Alright, let's get to it.


This match pissed me off. Don't get me wrong; the match was okay for what it was. Having this open the show was a smart move having this open the show, as it made me at least think Dolph had a chance to pull the upset. Ha Ha, silly me.

Two things pissed me off about this match up. Number one, I really hate these "A Certain Finisher is Banned!" matches. Why? Well, it's not exactly a surprise what happens…. EVERYTIME:

1. Ref is knocked out.
2. Face cheats by hitting said move while the ref's out
3. Face wins

Every single time. I was actually kinda hoping that they would deviate from formula a little bit, and have Edge get caught hitting the Spear, and thus Dolph becomes the new champion. Edge still looks strong because he was screwed, and Dolph is made into an instant main eventer. But no, status quo for the win. Though I have to wonder if Edge is getting this current push has anything to do with the rumors that he's thinking of letting his contract expire this year?

Number two… what the fuck was Kelly Kelly doing there? Seriously, talk about Deus ex Machina, she literally just appeared out of nowhere and attacked Vickie Guerrero… why? They have like no history together; she had no reason to attack her. In fact, it makes even less sense considering Vicki's Kelly's boss. If she gets fired on Friday, and has a surprised look on her face, I will laugh and laugh.

And one more… Personally, I thought that this match made Dolph look like garbage. There, I said it. I think it had mainly to do with Edge kicking out of every single finisher of Dolph's. It was around the time Edge kicked out of the Zig Zag that I gave up on this match. This match just felt like a glorified reminder that Dolph is midcard, and I hated it… but other than that, the match was pretty standard.


First and foremost… thank god Miz retained. For a time, I was a really big Orton fan. I was there for the advent of Stone Cold, and it was a very good time to be a wrestling fan. So when I saw Randy Orton starting to get that Stone Cold feel, I was excited… however, slowly but surely the truth came out. The truth was that Orton was not Stone Cold. He's Stone Cold if all he did was hit the Stunner. There's a good reason why Orton does those 4 sentence promos every so often; and that's cause WWE wants people to see that weakness as little as possible.

Anyway, with the exception of the end, this match was fine. The Miz is pretty much the Honky Tonk Man of our era (this is a big compliment, btw); as he is the master of getting his butt kicked and somehow winning. Orton was Orton, in that he was a generic uber face who god forbid looks venerable ever. However, the real MVP for this match I'm giving to Alex Riley, who is really starting to get comfortable with his manager role. Plus that leap he took to hit all of Nexus at the end was sick!

Speaking of the end… why was Nexus involved in this match? This is up there with Kelly Kelly getting involved at end of the previous match. Punk and Nexus literally had no beef with Orton going into this PPV. In fact, Nexus is already currently feuding with Cena… who, especially after the Rumble, established that they cannot beat even when they all fight him. So now… they wanna take on another uber face who buries everything in his path? Really? Storyline-wise, this makes sense? Oh well, favorite match of the night, easily.


So continuing with the Royal Rumble's theme of "It doesn't have to make sense" they announce that the Diva's Title match would now be a fatal fourway. That's fine, I thought. I dunno about you, but you have to think its one of 3 Diva's:

1) Melina, who was a recent challenge for the belt. Plus it makes sense that the RAW GM would want to increase RAW's chances of keeping the belt on RAW.
2) Beth Phoenix, who has been dominate since coming back. The fact that she still hasn't gotten a title match yet is still hard to swallow.
3) Awesome Kong, who could have made a helluva of debut by destroying everyone to become champ.

But no, it was… Eve, whose 2010 highlights include dancing for R Truth's raps… and that's it. Well, no big deal you think, as long as they don't put the strap on her- oh son of a bitch!!!

Hopefully, Eve only has the strap for "transitional" purposes, as once again Awesome Kong is coming. But otherwise, this was just stupid.

BTW, please tell me the plan isn't to break up LayCool. Those two are one of the few credits the Divas have left. I know they've been together for awhile now, but it still works. Keep them together.


Thank God WWE at least had the stones to take a chance with Alberto Del Rio, who I don't think we've seen a newbie win a RR this quickly since Yokozuna. Hopefully, we see Alberto's career ascend to similar heights… minus the whole career plateau after a year or so.

The rumble had some cool moments:

1) The whole Nexus/Corre rumble to start was intriguing, despite how they never really fought officially.
2) Morrison, for the first time in a while, made me a fan of his again. IF he can continue to be this creative in the ring, it's only a matter of time before WWE has no choice but to give him a World Title.
3) Oh man, it was awesome to see Booker T and Diesel again! And small spoiler, but Booker T is apparently a new announcer for Smackdown! Could the return of Chet Lemon and Black Snow be far behind?
4) This was one of the few times that I enjoyed Hornswoggle.
5) And I'll give WWE credit… I thought they were stupid enough to give the victory to Santino, but in the end, it was a cool little fake out.

Honestly, I only have one gripe with it, and that was there was no realistic way that Punk and Nexus could have lost once they got that advantage. Now I realize that Nexus just killing people from entry 8-40 would have been fucking boring, but really if you ain't gonna do it right then just don't do it. I'm sorry but Cena taking out Nexus by himself will always be BS to me. But this is really a small gripe on a pretty nice RR.

So was it worth it? I've seen worse, and no one gets the Rumble for the other matches. Matches sucked, but least the RR was good. I'd give at least the Rumble a good watch. In all, can't complain… I'll save that for Lawler getting a title match.

Questions? Feedback? Mailbag?
Twitter: @NotintheMiddle
Email: Malcolmnotinthemiddle@gmail.com

BEST THING OF THE NIGHT, OR "THE DEWEY AWARD": Bateman was pretty funny tonight. He is definitely the odds on favorite right now.

AWFUL THING OF THE NIGHT, OR "THE REESE AWARD": Todd and Josh need to stop being commentators.

WTF MOMENT OF THE NIGHT, OR "THE FRANCIS AWARD": Check out that Ted Dibiase vs. Brodus Clay… its just so weird.

Send Feedback to Malcolm Not in the Middle

Bookmark and Share


November 2006


by Sean Carless

With Christmas just around the corner, what better way to spend your few remaining dollars (left over after the seemingly infinite line-up of fucking pay-per-views ) then on the following "quality WWE merchandise!" After all, if they don't move this stuff, and fast, stockholders just might get time to figure out what "plummeting domestic buyrates" means!... and well, I don't think they need to tell you what that means! (Seriously. They're not telling you. Everything is fine! Ahem.).