[SPOILERS BELOW]I was intrigued by the way Samoa Joe v. Roman Reigns was booked (not a clean finish - I don't mind that because both contestants looked strong nonetheless), as well as the Bo Dallas v. Finn Balor match, which surprised me in the way it began. The Miz's feud with Dean Ambrose took another twist which was entertaining despite playing off a theme that has run through their feud in recent weeks. Bayley even made an impressive turnaround. Last week, she had downplayed the idea that she would never 'go extreme' in an interview with Corey Graves. It propped her up as being naive and unwilling to 'do what it takes' to defeat her opponent. It was kind of like "I'm playing the role of the face (hero or "good guy") and I won't be a heel ("bad guy") at the expense of losing the ability to look at myself in the mirror. That was last week. This week, she came out and, with her buddies, took out Nia Jax, who is kind of like Brock Lesnar in that she is in the way of many wrestlers on their road to a championship run. Bayley coming out reminded me of the Seth Rollins turn on the Shield. In that situation, Rollins gave up his "face" status as a member of the Shield in order to look out for his well-being and to be "the guy" chosen by Triple H. I liked this segment. As for the final segment delivered a payoff for a story line that had been teased mercilessly for a few weeks. The article probably complains that it was uneventful or "too safe" from the options WWE Creative could choose from, but I felt it was a good conclusion.
Editor's Note: After reading the article above, some relevant quotes:
- Regarding the SJ v Reigns match, this is from the article:Some will understandably question whether Joe should be going over under questionable circumstances, but at his core, the Joe character has proven an ultimate opportunist. An intensely focused competitor, he routinely seizes openings and scores wins.
- Regarding the Miz v. Dean Ambrose interaction, this is from the article: As for the segment as a whole, it was a mess. This entire chapter of the rivalry has struck the wrong chord, sacrificing seriousness for goofy chicanery that has done little to make the fans want to see another match between the two. Even if last week's bear nonsense did draw over 1,000,000 YouTube views.
- Regarding the Finn Balor v. Bo Dallas match, this is from the article: Bo Dallas was the opposition for the leader of Balor Club and wasted little time attacking him, catching him as he removed his jacket. Dallas clubbed Balor and took the fight to the arena floor, but it was only a matter of time before the former universal and NXT champion seized control ... For what amounted to a glorified squash, this was a nice little intense, hard-hitting match that spotlighted Balor.
- Regarding the Bayley save, which was viewed as good in the comments above, the article gave it a F and said this: This was a mess. An ugly, disjointed, directionless mess in which it felt like the women were ad-libbing to lackluster results. The return of Bayley felt premature and did nothing to evolve her character or forward her story. It was tacked onto a segment that did not really need it.
- Regarding the final segment, which was viewed as good in the comments above, the article gave it a C and said this: That was long. What it needed to be was the revelation via security camera and a big boot from Cass with the explanation coming next week. Instead, WWE Creative blew the whole intrigue in one segment, revealing Cass' motivations in an overly talky segment that did not generate the crowd reaction it probably hoped for. Maybe that's because fans legitimately liked the duo and were not ready for its demise. Either way, Angle looks like a shmuck for getting scooped by Graves, who clearly had access to security footage that the freaking general manager of wrestling's top show did not. Expect the impending rivalry to fail miserably if the execution of this segment is any indication.