WWE Survivor Series 2017
November 19, 2017
Toyota Center
Houston, Texas

Watch: WWE Network

Meet our reviewers:

Kelly Harrass has collected 500 moons in Super Mario Odyssey. You can regularly find him reviewing WWE pay per views or specials or whatever the hell they’re calling them now. Look for Kelly on Twitter at @comicgeekelly and podcasting for Panels on Pages.

August Baker did the preview for this very Survivor Series, so go read that. Then read this.Go ahead. I won’t judge. @augustbaker12 on the Twitter.

Elias def. Matt Hardy

Kelly Harrass: There aren’t enough hours in the day to get me to watch this. Also, still at work.

WWE Cruiserweight Championship: Enzo Amore © def. Kalisto

August Baker: The highlight of this was Kalisto botching his springboard entrance. Beyond that, there wasn’t much here. Kalisto hit a nice Code Red early on, but a commercial break killed his momentum. Enzo is a serviceable brawler, but this match had no heat, no interest, and nothing we haven’t seen before. Enzo won with his terrible finisher, and it’s time for a new challenger to emerge. **1/2

Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn def. Fandango and Tyler Breeze

August Baker: This was every mediocre WWE tag match you’ve ever seen. Owens and Zayn isolated Breeze, Fandango got the “hot” tag, and Owens pinned him shortly with the pop-up powerbomb. Owens and Zayn are obviously too good for this crap. **1/2

The Shield (Dean Ambrose, Roman Reigns, and Seth Rollins) def. The New Day (Big E, Kofi Kingston, and Xavier Woods)

Kelly Harrass: Remember when The Shield were the coolest guys in the world? Those were good times. Now they wear the legit worst shirts I’ve ever seen. I don’t know what I was expecting out of this match, but it was more than what we got. The opening minutes of the match were nothing special, just your basic WWE multiman tag match. Once things really got going, the match was pretty good. We got a ton of fun team offense from both squads. As far as being a team goes, New Day actually edges out the Shield for me, having a more cohesive feel and tag moves beyond a powerbomb. Sadly, this was probably the weakest match that New Day has had on PPV in a while. ***1/4

August Baker: The Shield deserved to lose just for those atrocious shirts. Seth and Dean wearing that shirt while Roman doesn’t goes to show you that yes, the WWE will bury everyone else on the roster to make Roman look good. This match had super high expectations from me, but fell a little short. I was hoping for a fast-paced, crazy trios style match, and instead it was a more typical match, very slow to get going. Once it picked up though, it was good. Big E continues to prove that he should be a main event star. The best spot of the match was E holding up both Ambrose and Rollins for the New Day’s double team finish, nailing both of them. Unfortunately, the outcome of this match was never really in doubt, and Kofi ate a Super Triple Powerbomb. ***1/2

Team Raw (Alicia Fox, Nia Jax, Asuka, Sasha Banks, and Bayley) def. Team SmackDown (Becky Lynch, Carmella, Naomi, Tamina, and Natalya)

Kelly Harrass: For as much crap as I gave the WWE debut match for Asuka, this match made up for it. With her spot as the sole survivor for Team Raw up against Tamina and Natalya, they booked her to perfection. There was no one more disliked on the Smackdown team than those two, so of course the fans are going to want to see Asuka kick their heads in. We can be told she’s dominant until the stars burn out, but here we actually got to see it as she racked up three eliminations. Outside of that, I didn’t care much for this one. You had the nonsensical eliminations that you get from matches like this along with some sloppy looking work. I feel like the goal of agents working on WWE elimination matches is to try and find the best way to misuse as many wrestlers in the match as possible. Take away the first half of the match and my enjoyment of it would increase quite a bit. As it was, the positives just barely outweigh the negatives. **3/4

August Baker: I didn’t have the highest expectations for this one, but really enjoyed it. Asuka being the sole survivor makes her look badass, and primes her for a title shot. Hopefully this puts Asuka back on track to being the dominant woman she was in NXT. The match itself had your normal amount of Survivor Series roll ups and quick tap outs, but things flowed well except for a weird bit where no one was sure if Alicia Fox had been eliminated. One thing I really didn’t like about this match was Natalya being the mystery teammate. If they were going to give the spot to Nattie instead of a more interesting person, they should have just announced it on Smackdown. I’m hoping that the early eliminations of Bayley and particularly Lynch doesn’t mean that those two are heading down the card. ***1/4

United States Champion Baron Corbin def. Intercontinental Champion The Miz

Kelly Harrass: So both these guys are dicks, but Miz was less of a dick than Corbin so I was cheering for him. The match was fine. Honestly, it was better than I was expecting. Miz showed a lot of fire going after Corbin and came off like a baby face for the most part, just ignore that his friends were trying to help him. There was solid limbwork with Miz going after Corbin’s leg, but at some point Corbin stopped selling the leg almost entirely. Miz was pretty good here and Corbin was about as good as you’re going to get out of him. Looking back, this was about as good as your usual Raw TV match. **1/4

August Baker: One on side, you have a large, greasy guy hitting on another man’s wife. On the other side, you have a guy using outside interference at every opportunity. Heel vs heel is always iffy. The work they did was okay, but it’s just weird watching Corbin throw around the Miztourage like he was a babyface overcoming the odds. If anyone was going to work babyface in the match, it should have been the man defending his wife’s honor. Other than awkward characterization, there wasn’t much to the match. It wasn’t bad, but it didn’t do much to stick out either. Miz worked the leg, Corbin overcame the numbers game. ***

SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Usos (Jey and Jimmy Uso) def. Raw Tag Team Champions Cesaro and Sheamus

Kelly Harrass: It was during this match that I changed my commentary feed from English to Japanese. I just couldn’t take anymore of the five man commentary booth that was constantly bickering. I was also having issues with my Network feed so I missed some of the match, but it didn’t feel like I really missed anything. These two teams didn’t really kick things up a notch until the second half of the match. Just as I said with the opener, this was the worst Usos match that I’ve seen on a PPV in a while. And this match was pretty good too, that just goes to show how awesome this team has been this year. We’ve seen these two teams go all out against each other before and that wasn’t what we got tonight. Since no one really cares about the Battle for Brand Supremacy, all the matches on the show thus far have lacked any real heat. This one suffered in the same way. ***1/4

August Baker: Just when I was about to complain that this match needed more superkicks, the Usos thankfully unleashed a flurry of them. Much like the Shield match earlier, it felt like these guys had another gear that the match just didn’t reach. It was still the best match of the night so far. It looked like they had a few bits of miscommunication early, and it took some time for the hard hits to start coming. The last several minutes was more what I was hoping for from the beginning. Needed more superkicks. ***1/2

SmackDown Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair def. Raw Women’s Champion Alexa Bliss

Kelly Harrass: Was this match a million boring years long or was it just me? I don’t know what the hell is going on with this show, but it seems like every wrestler thinks that they’re working a house show until halfway through the match when they remember that it’s Survivor Series and they have to defend the honor of their brand. The only thing that really ever kept my attention was when Bliss would interact with the referee. “Get off the ropes!” “I KNOW!” “Then act like you know!” Five star banter. I really wanted to like this, but something between these two didn’t mesh well. **1/2

August Baker: Nothing about this match grabbed me. It didn’t do a lot wrong necessarily, but went on too long. I got bored, and that’s never a good sign. Anytime Bliss was holding Flair in a rest hold I just kind of zoned out. The work was clean enough, better than expected frankly, but watching tiny Alexa Bliss keep Flair grounded does not hold my attention. Another example tonight of two people just having the wrong kind of match. **1/4

Universal Champion Brock Lesnar (with Paul Heyman) def. WWE Champion AJ Styles

Kelly Harrass: Finally, something delivered! Since the Suplex City era began, I’ve been very critical of Lesnar’s matches. More often than not, I find the matches boring, especially knowing what Brock is capable of. The quality of this match is why I’m so hard on Brock’s recent output. AJ Styles might be the perfect opponent for Brock. Lesnar can toss AJ around like a rag doll all he wants and even after getting destroyed, AJ’s offense is still believable. I couldn’t believe some of the bumps that Styles took. Lesnar has his working boots on tonight and after an extended control period actually worked a pretty even match. I like how between this match and Lesnar’s previous match with Strowman, it seems as though WWE is trying to rehab the F5. In both of those matches, Brock one after a single F5 instead of spamming it like he had been in the past. With the stupid scoreboard, we know that Brock was winning, but there were some times where I really thought AJ would pull it out. Awesome work from both men, this match is one of WWE’s best of the year. ****½

August Baker: This. Fucking. RULED! This was everything I hoped for out of this match. This was the best Lesnar performance in a year and a half. He looked dominant, but he also sold for AJ more than anyone since Roman. I was worried at the beginning, with Lesnar’s utter domination, that we were getting another typical Lesnar match. Thanks to the scoreboard set up of the PPV, and Lesnar being Lesnar, it was pretty obvious Brock was winning. But they made me doubt the outcome, and that’s all I ask for. Lesnar in the Calf Crusher, a move similar to that which made him submit in UFC, was awesome. Brock catching AJ out of the Forearm was awesome. AJ being suplexed clear across the ring was awesome. It looked like there were a few times Lesnar had trouble with Style’s flippy offense, but it didn’t matter. Sometimes that shit just makes things look more legit, and this was one of those times. In a weak year for WWE regarding in-ring quality, this match jumps to the top of the list. ****1/2

Team Raw (Kurt Angle, Braun Strowman, Finn Bálor, Samoa Joe, and Triple H) def. Team SmackDown (Shane McMahon, Randy Orton, Bobby Roode, Shinsuke Nakamura, and John Cena)

Kelly Harrass: This was fucking stupid. If you ever want to see WWE nonsense booking at its best, just watch this match. Why bring John Cena back to be beaten by a barely able to walk Kurt Angle? Why have Triple H turn on Kurt only to turn on Shane, only to prank Braun? Why was Bobby Roode here? Why did Shane chase away Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn with such ease? What does Raw win in the Battle for Brand Supremacy? Why would WWE possibly think the match should be built around Kurt Angle, Triple H, and Shane McMahon? I have too many questions and the answers to all of them are stupid.

The match started off well enough and I think it peaked with the Bálor/Nakamura segment. Outside of that, I found the match to be incredibly boring. At one point I had hoped that Team Smackdown would be disqualified when Roode and Nak interfered after they were eliminated just so the match would end, but alas, it continued on. Maybe it was because I’m very tired or maybe it was because this was terrible, but I hated this match with every fiber of my being. The in-ring was boring, the story was nonsense, and the old men were the ones to get put over the most. Survivor Series was everything bad about this company. DUD

August Baker: Nakamura and Roode were eliminated quickly, as expected, thought at least Nakamura got a flurry of offense in first. Samoa Joe and Balor didn’t last much longer, but at least Finn got an assist on John Cena. In the end, this was all about HHH, Kurt Angle, and Shane McMahon. And that is so incredibly dumb. It’s hard to understate how dumb it is. You have some extremely talented people on your roster, all to put over HHH and Shane. It’s inexplicable.

The first half of this was entertaining. In my preview, I had five 1 on 1 confrontations I wanted to see, and I got all of them, so that was neat. Despite being the first eliminated, I thought Nakamura looked good and got lots of face time. I enjoyed Cena and Orton working together to take on Braun. But once the eliminations started coming, the match became about McMahon family drama, and it dragggggged on and on. Matches have been about McMahon family drama for twenty years. Twenty fucking years! It overshadows every other story they have at all times. It’s such mind-boggling bad storytelling, yet they persist. Anyways, the match started fine, then dove off a cliff. Whatever. *3/4