1. Sheamus & Santino Marella v. Wade Barrett & Jinder Majal - 3 out of 5
2. Daniel Bryan v. Kofi Kingston - 3 out of 5
3. Brodus Clay v. Curt Hawkins - ??? out of 5
4. CM Punk v. Jack Swagger - 4 out of 5
5. Beth Phoenix v. Eve - N/A
6. Dolph Ziggler v. John Cena - 3 out of 5
I realized when I woke up this morning that I've been neglecting to keep up with updates for Royal Rumble. Two weeks ago, of course, Dolph Ziggler won the right to face CM Punk for the WWE Championship. The fangirling in this house aside, this was just the beginning of what has the potential to become a very interesting storyline. The reason Ziggler's contendership is interesting is because it was caused by the distraction of John Laurinaitis, who was supposedly there in the interest of justice. Embarrassed by his mistake, last week Mr. Ace announced that he would be the special guest referee in the match... except he made the same mistake of coming out to ringside during the match to announce it, causing another frustrating loss for Punk. Last night, he came out before the match started to announce that if Punk won his match, Swagger and Vickie would be banned from ringside. The match ended with Punk winning, but it was a controversial and completely blown call by the ref, who counted a pin when Swagger got his shoulder up before 3. I have to be honest, I was completely expecting Laurinaitis to restart the match, maybe even get a new official out there, but the Exec. VP of Talent Relations just applauded Punk for his efforts and left. Hmm.
Other storyline developments this week: Kane continued his reign of terror on John Cena, this time by spending all night stalking Zack Ryder. Zack proved to be an easy mark at the end of the night, unfortunately. Eve was all ready for a match against Beth Phoenix, but the arena suddenly turned red and Kane's music blared. Zack rushed out to save her, and they ran out to his car, but the tire was flat, and he took forever to change it, allowing Kane to get hold of him... but not before John Cena was halfway through a match of his own. The show ended last night with Kane towering over the carnage he had created.
Jericho showed up and said nothing again. Jericho, you glorious bastard. Girls Watch Wrestling love you.
We had the first of our WWE Hall of Fame announcements last night, and it was a double-header! First we learned that Edge will be inducted. Mehe raged, and I just rolled my eyes. It's practically customary for WWE to induct a wrestler as soon as he retires, but seeing as how they're going to Toronto next year, that seemed like that would be a perfect time and place for him. Besides, I can see the rush in a lot of cases. The wrestling bug is clearly a strong one, and there are some guys (you know who you are, TNA superstars) who go in and out of retirement every other month. But with Edge, there's no fear of that. He's young, and he's in relatively good shape. He definitely could have been held off for one year to be inducted at home.
Also being inducted this year are the Four Horsemen. One wonders exactly how TNA execs feel about Ric Flair being inducted while working for another company, but I expect he'll show. He was there to congratulate Shawn Michaels while working for TNA, and besides that, he's Ric Flair. He's insane. If Flair wants to go to the WWE Hall of Fame ceremony, you let him go, or you get chopped. Or, these days, you might get killed by Gunner. Who knows. My point is, Ric Flair is like a 900-pound gorilla. He goes where he damn well pleases.
Now, let's get to the real story of the night. No, not Kane/Cena "let the hate flow through you". Not Jeritroll refusing to speak. Not even the No-DQ battle Bryan has against the Big Show on Friday. That's right, I'm talking about the long-awaited return of Brodus Clay. Now I see why they stopped showing his promos quickly, and why they kept him out for so long. You can't just go from Alberto Del Rio's Personal Opponent Wrecking Machine to The Funkasaurus overnight. There has to be a process. A long one. One, I imagine, that involves watching lots and lots of tapes of every wrestler who's gimmick has involved dancing. Ever. In fact, when he debuted last night, I immediately yelled out (and consequntly Tweeted), "Where's Disco Inferno? Where's The Godfather? Where's Rikishi???" As it turns out, I wasn't the only one having these thoughts. Today on r/SquaredCircle, there's a new sidebar image of Godfather that simply says "Debutin' Ain't Easy".
The internet: Meme-ing, Gif-ing, and Parodying in real time.