WWE Smackdown
“Halloween 2014”
Houston, Texas

We kick off the episode with spotlights shining on the crowd as the camera pans over the audience — oddly reminiscent of 1993 Monday Night Raw. And then the Chairman of WWE Vince McMahon appears on the TitanTron to address the audience. Vince announces that the month of November will be free for new subscribers of the WWE Network. This forces the crowd into a frenzy of “Yes!” chants. That’s odd. I would have figured the majority of an audience attending a WWE show would already be subscribed to the WWE Network. Why are they so excited that new people are getting the Network for free when they still have to pay for it? OOOOOHHHHHH!!!! That’s because they heavily edited this segment and the “Yes!” chants were actually for Daniel Bryan, wishing him well through his continued recovery. Pardon my French, but this severely pisses me off. Why the Hell is the WWE using and abusing Daniel Bryan’s popularity to make them look good, but won’t properly push the guy? And before anyone tweets me (@LuchaNerd) telling me “How did they not properly push him? He main evented and won at WrestleMania!” Go back and watch WrestleMania and listen to the commentary. It is embarrassing and atrocious. Tell me how many WrestleMania main eventers have been called a “farm animal” a “garden gnome” or a “dwarf” at WrestleMania? ONE! Daniel Bryan. It was insulting and stupid. Listen back to Jesse Ventura and you will hear why he is the greatest heel commentator of all-time. Jesse put over the babyfaces while cheering on the heels. He didn’t put down and bury the babyfaces. Rant over.

Divas Halloween Battle Royal: All of the Divas are wearing their silly PG Halloween costumes while Diva’s champion AJ Lee is sitting ringside at the commentary table. This was one of those stupid battle royals with the Divas rules where you can be eliminated by being tossed out of the ring regardless if it was over the top rope or the bottom rope or the middle rope. Nikki Bella wins. Oh and by the way Nikki forced her “assistant” Brie to dress as Daniel Bryan, so she looked like the bearded lady, but Brie didn’t compete in the match because Nikki forced her to drive from Houston to New York to pick up a Louis Vuitton handbag. ALL WHILE WEARING THE BEARD! AGH! THE EMBARRASSMENT! Ugh….. Nikki trash talked AJ after her victory.

Corporate Kane vs. Dolph Ziggler: Before the match Corporate Kane gets on the mic and wishes “Happy Halloween!” to the WWE Universe. Kane says he looks forward to Halloween every year, because he loves scaring little children with fake blood. Kane announces that Cesaro will be taking on “everyone’s favorite lunatic fringe” Dean Ambrose in a “Trick or Street Fight”. Seth then laughs at the thought that Bray Wyatt might get to “Dean-o” before he enters his match with Cesaro. Seth then starts asking Kane who would possibly join Team Cena at Survivor Series. Kane then mentions that there is one superstar that is already associating himself with Team Cena. “I’m talking to you Dolph Ziggler!”

Two Thoughts on this promo:

  1. Kane is awful and the sooner he gets off of TV and takes his inevitable role backstage the sooner.
  2. I had an epiphany, I think the bad rap Seth Rollins gets for his promos is 85% the bad script he is given. His delivery is always really good, especially when compared to his Ring of Honor work, but his lines are awful.

This match was one of those classic “wrestling a broom stick” scenarios. Ziggler works his butt off to make Kane look good, which is really pathetic if you think about it. Kane has been wrestling in the WWE for 19 years to Ziggler’s 9 years, so why is Ziggler carrying the veteran? Kane wins with a choke slam. And then choke slams Ziggler another time after the match is over followed by Mercury and Noble beating down Ziggler. Kane gets on the mic and tells Ziggler he has another match against Seth Rollins right now.

Seth Rollins vs. Dolph Ziggler: Rollins laughs at Ziggler as Dolph attempts to crawl to the ropes to pull himself up. Rollins delivers a Curb Stomp to Ziggler for the win.

Side note: I really hope Mercury and Noble are on Team Authority for Survivor Series and they both wrestle in actual ring gear (as opposed to Corporate Kane ring gear) and actually wrestle the match for real, not like stooges. It could help make the match a classic one.

We get a video package on the WWE’s relationship with Susan G. Komen for the last time since this is the last day of October. It is really cool what the WWE does for breast cancer awareness, but I still hate that the heels wear the pink Komen themed gear. Heels should have no redeeming qualities about them. They shouldn’t even have merchandise if you want my honest opinion, but they especially should be wearing breast cancer awareness gear. You don’t want your fans saying “Man, I really hate the Miz…..but, look! He is supporting breast cancer awareness; maybe he isn’t such a bad guy.” I don’t think it would hurt what they are trying to do for Susan G. Komen to not have the heels wear the pink.

Heath Slater comes to the ring dressed as a scarecrow. Not the one from Batman or even the one from the Wizard of Oz. Just a stupid generic scarecrow. Ryback then comes out dressed as a flying monkey to a major pop! Just kidding about the flying monkey thing, I was just making sure you were still paying attention.
Ryback vs. Scarecrow Slater: Michael Cole lets us know that Byron Saxton helped Heath Slater get dressed this morning. Ryback goes for any early arm bar, but Slater’s hand falls off! Slater then shows it was a fake hand and says “I had to trick the big guy!” Then Ryback squashes Slater like only he can.

By the way the commentary has been surprisingly decent tonight. I just realized that JBL is not behind the table on this episode. Wonder if there is a correlation to those two sentences.

Adam Rose and the Exotic Express go around backstage knocking on different doors “Trick or Treating”. Gold and Stardust are at the first door, Sin Cara dressed up as a ninja turtle is at door two, and at door three is R-Truth with a sheet over his head dressed as a ghost. Then in homage to “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!” R-Truth puts a rock in Adam Rose’s bag.

We then get to watch the Vince McMahon faux message again. Let me tell you, Cole has mentioned November being free for new subscribers of the Network at least twice every segment of the show, so the fact that they showed this message again was just insulting to my intelligence and annoyed me again.

Miz TV kicks off as The Miz introduces Mark Henry as “The man who has a lot of explaining to do, The World’s Strongest Man! Mark Henry!” Michael Cole mentions that Big Show and Henry go way back. Way back to perhaps 2-3 years ago when they feuded over the World Heavyweight Championship? WWE ignoring their past is probably my biggest pet peeve of their product. If they would acknowledge their past and their history with some solid continuity I would enjoy their product 1,000x more.

Mark Henry claims that Big Show didn’t enter the match with Rusev to support America. It was about outshining Henry. The crowd chants “What?” at Henry and Henry tells them to shut up. Henry then stands up and cuts a pretty solid promo about how size doesn’t matter. It’s about strength.

Big Show then comes out onto the top of the stage and stares down Henry before proceeding to walk down the ramp to the ring. Henry steps out onto the apron behind Miz and Mizdow. Show runs past the Mizzes and brawls with Henry on the outside of the ring. Show gets some punches in and then Henry shoves Show into the timekeeper’s barricade thus collapsing the barricade. It boggles my mind that the barricade that protects the timekeeper’s area is so much weaker than the barricade that surrounds the fans. The WWE should really get that fixed.

Recap of Raw, John Cena’s promo from Monday about Brock Lesnar being a wussy and Seth Rollins getting a wakeup call and Cena going through the future. Then Steph came out with a business proposition for Cena to turn heel. This whole segment was super contrived and nonsensical, but the delivery from Cena, Stephanie, and Triple H was fantastic. And unfortunately in the eyes of the WWE, if the delivery is good then the content doesn’t matter. This Raw Rebound finishes out with Cena vs. Rollins from Monday that ended in a locker room unloading brawl.

Gold and Stardust vs. Los Matadores (Diego and Fernando): Gold and Stardust appear in a small box split screen pre-taped promo asking “Who wouldn’t want the services of Gold and Stardust?” in reference to Team Cena vs. Team Authority. Please don’t put the Goldie brothers in that match. It would make no sense to put them on either team.

Stardust heels it up big time early on by knocking El Torito off the apron. Diego then comes in off the hot tag to avenge his little bull friend. Los Matadores double suicide dive to the outside atop of Goldust. Stardust then performs The Falling Star stage dive maneuver to all participants. Torito then dives out of the ring and arm drags Stardust to the floor. Diego then swiftly Schoolboy’s Goldust for the win. Short match, but decent.

Erick Rowan watches See No Evil 2: In the back we get a shot of Rowan watching See No Evil 2 with Corporate Kane. Really? They are going to waste Rowan’s big return on crap like this? What am I watching?

Rusev vs. The Great Khali: Yes! Finally a segment worth watching. I don’t care if it includes Khali, Rusev is that good and this show has been that bad. Rusev kicks Khali in the ribs and puts him in the Accolade for the win. Ugh. Even the Rusev segment was forgettable.

After the match Lana gets on the mic and tells the WWE Universe to “Shut tawp!” Lana says that they have been given directions from Russia to further destroy the deteriorating American spirit. Rusev says that he has beaten our real Americans. Our strongest American. And our giant American. Rusev says next he will destroy our American champion and will deliver the United States Champion to Vladimir Putin.

Sheamus comes out says he has been looking forward to this fight ever since Rusev declared a personal war on the United States, but he needs to understand one thing. Sheamus says he takes personal pride in everything it stands for. Sheamus gets in the ring and goes to hit Rusev with a Brogue Kick, but Rusev impressively somersaults through and rolls out of the ring. Rusev vs. Sheamus could be a Top 10 Match of the Year and I make no bones about that.

We get a recap of the Ambrose vs. Rollins Hell in a Cell match complete with Wyatt Hocus Pocus in time for Halloween! Bray makes a full entrance for this segment to a sea of boo’s and cell phone lights. The cell phone lights go back to what I was saying earlier about heels having redeeming qualities. The fact that they encourage and request their fans take part in this entrance is moronic. It’s a great visual, but Bray Wyatt is a heel and the fans should hate his guys, not want to play along with him.

Bray sits in the middle of the ring in a rocking chair. Bray calls Ambrose a monster just like him. Bray says he understood what Ambrose was feeling when Ambrose was beating Rollins down at Hell in a Cell. Bray tells Ambrose that his sins will stain him forever. Whatever that means.

Trick or Street Fight Match – Dean Ambrose vs. Cesaro: There are skeletons hanging from the ring posts, the ring aprons are covered in rows of Jack ‘o’ Lanterns, there are tubs of apples to bob, and Dean Ambrose brings a candy corn colored kendo stick to the ring. The interesting thing is that only the kendo stick can really be used as a legit weapon.

Cesaro comes out dressed as Minoru Suzuki of NJPW. Just kidding, he is just wearing his Suzuki tribute towel on his head. The match starts off with some back and forth attacks with the kendo stick. Cesaro gets the best of Ambrose and then proceeds to pile a bunch of Jack ‘o’ Lanterns in the middle of the ring to set up a suplex onto them. Ambrose counters and throws Cesaro to the outside for more Halloween hijinks.

Cesaro gets back body dropped on the pumpkin patch, Ambrose hits Cesaro with a skeleton, Cesaro forces Ambrose to bob for apples, Cesaro hits Ambrose with a steel chair, and Ambrose flies with a witch’s broom onto Cesaro through a table. Only one of those things should be mentioned in a wrestling show review.

Ambrose wins the match by smashing a Jack ‘o’ Lantern onto Cesaro’s head and then delivering the new Dirty Deeds.

Final Thoughts:

This was an absolute horrendous and awful and embarrassing show from the WWE. I understand the holiday episodes of WWE are probably some of their lowest rated, because families are busy not watch wrestling, but what happened to the days pro wrestling promotions tried to get families to gather round the TV on a given holiday to enjoy some good ol’ wrasslin’? Now the WWE just makes these episodes throw aways in a season of already terrible WWE TV. Ugh… Rich Kraetsch, you owe me some Roddy Piper All Outta Bubblegum Soda for making me review this crap. (Editor’s Note: That can be arranged)