The August 20th episode of OVW has come and gone and I'm curious what the others in the group who can watch the show thought.
I think the highlight had to be watching announcer Dean Hill completely flip out and cuss out Johnny Jeter at the end of the show. When he flipped off Jeter, you could see people in the background (the "marks" side of the audience, really) gasp in shock. I think the audience reacted more to Dean's rant than they did over Matt Cappotelli bleeding all over the place the week before. That's not necessarily a bad thing.
Nice stuff with Al Snow getting prepared to take Jeter on when Albright came back out. I also thought it was an excellent idea to have the other wrestlers (including what I guess is a now-face Paul Birchall) ganging up on Jeter and looking to be ready to tear him to pieces when Danny Davis came out and forced them to the back.
Danny's slapping of Jeter (gee, an OVW leader slapping around a wrestler ... where have I heard of that before?) went well until Jeter started selling additional punches as if he were in a match (falling down as if his legs were kicked out from under him, for example). I think that made it clear that it was a work rather than a shoot there when shoot is what they were reaching for.
Can't tell where they're going with Mike Mondo and Aaron Stevens right now. Both worked as heels in their match together.
The reaction I'm getting on Puder is still pretty mixed. The audience doesn't seem to really get into him at all, and his weekly "takedown, punch, keylock" five-second matches don't seem to do much in getting him over. Anderson is the one really selling these matches over-all, I believe, and without him I think Puder would be in trouble.
Only other comment I can think of is that I believe they pushed the envelope in replaying Matt's beating from the previous week over and over and over again this week. Kinda took the steam out of the moment.
I'm really enjoying the booking under Heyman, as well. Jeter has really exploded as a tremendous heel and this current storyline has everyone on the edges of their seats. I am a little concerned that it appears Albright is being slowly pushed to the back of the line under his leadership though. Maybe I'm just jumping to conclusions. No doubt Heyman has given Albright much more mic time and has further developed his personality on camera. I just hope he doesn't disappear from TV since his matches are undoubtedly the strongest on each show.
Well, just came back from the taping tonight and Albright was the first one over the top in a battle royale to see who would go up against Jeter for the belt at the end of the show.
Dean also apologized for his actions the week before, saying that he had crossed the line as a commentator when he flipped out (and flipped off) Jeter. He stated that it was to be his last show, but Danny Davis came out and told him that if Dean quit, he would quit as well. With everyone cheering Dean on, he said he would stay.
Ken Kennedy did a take-off on Dean that had Al Snow covering his mouth to keep from laughing. He was supposed to be angry about KK insulting Dean, after all.
Puder had his typical 15-seconds of punches and the keylock. Now this week I did see some people with Puder banners and t-shirts. They were all about twelve-years-old, but I did see a few. Beyond that, most people seem to have a mixed reaction to the pair - they cheer Ken Kennedy and boo Daniel Puder. So it's just kinda odd right now.
Show ended with Jeter being tricked into heading into the parking lot, where Matt Cappotelli was waiting on the hood of a car. A group of wrestlers either tried to hold Jeter off or attack him (hard to tell from the monitor up near the ceiling) and Matt appeared to take a flip off the car, while wearing a cast on his leg, and landing on the group.
Other good things in the show, but those were the main highlights.
(Additional on 8/25): Just read Dan Willis' "quick results" for the show on IP and I have to disagree with a couple of things he said. He said that the show last night was the most people he had seen at a show. The crowd was somewhat smaller than many I've seen at Davis Arena, with empty seats in many pockets around the place (I had two next to me) and no additional seating added on the floor like they typically do when they get an overflow crowd. That's not to say that it wasn't near-capacity, but there's been bigger crowds at Davis Arena on a regular basis.
Completely disagree with him about the audience being "dead" at the shows in the past. I can't recall a case where an OVW crowd had not be responsive to a match. So I can only conclude that the guy is just now starting to hit the shows and basing his opinions on watching the television show until recently. That's cool, but I think he's misrepresenting the audience's reaction to OVW in the past.
smark/net attack Advisory System Status is: Elevated (Holds; July 5, 2005) It's good to see that the WWE isn't backing away from Batista or Cena. There's still some questions lingering over a few of the draft moves they either made or didn't make (Jericho being a prime example), but the stage is set for a solid run to Summerslam that may send the indicator down. The longer Triple H stays away is also a plus...
I think the show's been just as good as ever with no real leap or decline in quality since Cornette's ouster. The Jeter storyline (so far) is very reminiscent of "The Machine" Doug Basham's reign with the OVW title in 2001.
The one thing that "bothers" me and it's one of those things that bother a lot of dork fans of certain feds that have watched for a while is when Al Snow keeps talking about The Tolands as the most dominant tag team in OVW history. They're very good, but nowhere near the Minnesota Stretching Crew (Brock Lesnar & Shelton Benjamin), The Lords of the Ring ("Mr. Wrestling" Nick Dinsmore and "Ironman" Rob Conway) or my personal fave, the Revolution ("The Machine" Doug Basham and the Damaja). I'm just saying is all.
It is a good rule in life never to apologize. The right sort of people do not want apologies, and the wrong sort take a mean advantage of them. P. G. Wodehouse (1881 - 1975), The Man Upstairs (1914)
shinstrife: There's a goodly amount of the pee-sychology in the Smackdown half of WWE these days, with Angle, Benoit, and Eddy all wrestling weekly 15 minute matches, and more of a focus on body part work and submissions coming as an order from the top.