- Cage: Lashley vs Omos **1/2
- Riddle vs Jimmy **3/4
- Los Lotharios vs Styles, Balor ***
- Bliss vs Deville **1/2
- Lynch vs Asuka ***1/4
We started this one with a package showcasing the rivalry between Lashley and Omos including MVP turning on the former WWE Champion. I dig the way they started this one, giving it a PPV vibe. Admittedly I had no idea this was a thing and I also should admit that I am not big on Omos despite big being big on him. That said, the package that aired setting this up was well done enough that I was interested.
The winner takes all tag match is promoted as running this Friday.
Note that I am a bit behind on WWE content and have a full things from before this episode on my pull list. I only skipped ahead momentarily because I was curious of how they handled the Banks/Naomi stuff and wanted to see it for myself.
MVP, mic in hand, stood with Omos inside of the cage, with the big man making the cage walls look small, and opened us up officially while further promoting the forthcoming cage match.
Alexander attacked Lashley on the latter's way out and Omos joined in on the attack. Cedric was said to have been trying for weeks to win the favor of MVP. I am for a revival of the faction and hopefully that's what we're getting out of this.
WWE released a statement meant to control the narrative and it attacked Banks and Naomi in the process. Word is many of the talent backstage are not on their side in this, officially, at least. I think Vince let his ego get in the way here, though. The PR stunt response has ensured no way forward, guaranteeing a jump once things are cleared contractually. Sasha's Hollywood aspirations are also notably something that could have big ramifications down the line following the situation.
Too bad the roster was too weak to fight off Vince and his goon's union busting behavior.
Back from the ads, and the two are brawling in the steel square.
It was about what I figured it would be, with The Nigerian Giant working a slow, menacing pace as Lashley worked down to make him look good. Khali style stuff, because that's how basically all dudes this size are in the ring other than Morrissey. MVP got involved a bit too and it was all certainly more a story based match than a quality one.
Far from recommendation level but largely inoffensive in the way that it somehow delivered nicely on the low-bar promise that was made when this was booked.
A solid enough way to start the episode and I should give a quick props to the ending for at least being interesting. They went with a collapsing wall instead of an imploding ring which was a good idea.
The WWE ADHD camera trick meant to psychologically keep your attention continues to give me a headache.
Bianca versus Asuka clips from last week air. Becky was on commentary and wore some fucked up glasses before interfering. Lynch and Pearce are backstage and Becky alludes to Banks and Naomi leaving and how it was changing an announced match.
The captions simplified Banks and Naomi to a simple "they."
Asuka and Lynch was announced for the main event with the winner becoming division #1 contender.
A spot of the Bloodline and RK-Bro angle airs next with a segment from SmackDown. Riddle landed a knee on Roman to end the clip.
Riddle and Jimmy Uso are up next in singles action.
Looking at the USA card, it looks like we skipped something with Mustafa.
Remember when Riddle thought it was funny to say that he needed weed to avoid beating his children? Yeah, that was fucked up shit people.
Anyway, Jey got involved in this one. It went ten but didn't really break out of 2nd gear in any substantial way, sadly. The commercial break right as it was sort of building didn't help, either. I shouldn't have to overpay for Hulu to make this not get hurt quality-wise, people. They kept getting close to elevating it further, but the slow pace and beforementioned issues denied that from being possible.
Judgement Day gets a spotlight, especially Rhea joining the group and the attack on Styles. Liv is shown backstage, Los Lotharios get some TV time before AJ and Finn request Morgan to be at ringside. Judgement Day are then shown backstage as the cult of Edge promoted themselves.
A good promo and admittedly the most interesting stuff I've seen these three, yes even Edge, involved in for a while.
They made an offer for AJ to join or get his ass kicked until he does.
Liv came out next, opting to join Finn and AJ for their tag match. It's mentioned again that Banks and Naomi had split, this time basically suggesting that they are unprofessional.
Commercial break and then it's announced that tickets are going on sale for the upcoming UK show.
Not Bullet Club and Los Lotharios was a fine TV tag throwaway match, with AJ and Finn going over. If this means more of them teaming together, I'm for it. Here, a commercial break in the middle once again did no favors and the entire thing was still below expectations as well as the recommendation level despite being generally good.
Two Sweet, with Liv, AJ, and Finn, in post.
Sonya getting fired from her role and placed back as an in-ring performer runs followed by a clip of her falling to a returning Bliss. It's about fucking time they finally use Alexa for something.
Speaking of, Bliss is out next to a Avril sounding pop punk track. Another commercial before Sonya's music hits. She comes out looking like she shat herself backstage. They only got five, ensuring yet another match on the card that had no chance of being must-see, but they did rather well regardless.
A competitive, albeit largely forgettable, contest.
Sonya attacked the ref after and consequences are teased and then used as a segue into...
A Cody/Seth package runs leading to Rhodes coming out, cutting a promo, and then challenging Seth to a rematch in the cell. Seth agreed. Decent enough stuff and the match should be worthwhile.
Asuka cut a cringe promo backstage, then the Raw Women's Champion came out to watch her and Becky's match.
The main event had a decent pace and it built up nicely enough. A commercial break and overbooked, circus act finish sucked things down a tad but I admittedly enjoyed the chaos to a degree and I especially loved Asuka getting the nod.
This wasn't a bad episode at all, but it was also certainly a pretty good representation of WWE in 2022 at the same time. I cannot recommend this episode nor any of the matches to fans and I don't think I'll remember much about it, outside of the Sasha/Naomi news, in a few weeks. I also think it was an okay 90 minutes of TV and it was better than I had expected for whatever that's worth.
Overall Rating: 65/100%