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24.10.14 1405
The W - Pro Wrestling - Eddie/Rey - Best Storyline in WWE? Also, SD the Better Brand?
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Spaceman Spiff
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Since: 2.1.02
From: Philly Suburbs

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#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.05
The Eddie/Rey storyline is by far the most interesting story going on in the WWE for me. The conflicting emotions, the "family" betrayals, and it's all made better by the fact that we *know* they're legit close friends, as opposed to the WWE throwing 2 guys together and claiming they're friends, and then "shocking us" when 1 turns on the other. Both guys interfering in each other's singles matches, Eddie covering up a few weeks ago when Rey had the chair, the stuff at the end of the tag match when they lost the belts to MNM, Chavo & Carlito both stirring the pot. And then last night's SD kept the ball rolling: from the backstage segment w/ Chavo/Rey/Eddie, to Eddie walking away from the match only to return to Rey's corner and refusing to make the tag or the save, to watching stone-faced as MNM beat up on Rey post-match, to walking away from the beaten Rey, all done perfectly. And what a great visual - Rey on the big screen begging & reaching out for Eddie as Eddie is walking away from his fallen "familia." Great, great stuff.

We've been watching both of these guys for the last ~10 years (or so), so there's a real emotional attachment to them that can't be manufactured by the inept WWE writing team. In fact, anyone know who's behind the writing for this story? It's been done almost too well for WWE creative to be behind it.

And as for part 2 of the thread, anyone agree that SD has surpassed Raw once again as the better brand?

Smackdown:
-Good mix of guys in the title hunt (JBL, Cena, Book, Angle, Show)
-I don't want him as champ, but JBL managed to make himself entertaining after completely remaking his character
-There seems to be more room for advancement
-Eddie/Rey storyline
-Actual cruiser storyline getting airtime on SD
-MNM seem to be the real deal, and definitely better than Raw's new team
-Carlito's Cabana > Highlight Reel
-They managed to make Heidenreich entertaining, so long as they keep him from wrestling

Raw:
-ME scene only involves Batista & HHH
-No heel can seemingly be made to look better than the almight HHH
-Edge/Benoit are providing some good matches, but has there been any reason given why they're feuding?
-Christian has been the hottest thing on the show the last few weeks, but he's got no direction
-Jericho/Benjamin feud has been pretty flat so far
-The upcoming Diva Search 2

Don't get me wrong, Raw has some good stuff going on (Trish, Vis [as long as he's not wrestling], Christian, the fans turning on Lita), and SD has some bad stuff (OJ as US champ, Matt Morgan's stuttering gimmick), but I think, overall, SD has pulled ahead of Raw as the better show.

(edited by Spaceman Spiff on 29.4.05 1100)


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Since: 27.2.03
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#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.07
I think the best part of the Rey-Eddie story is the fact that it's not just a straight heel turn. Eddie is actually showing textbook signs of a nervous breakdown. And it makes perfect sense in the context of Eddie's recent losing streak and his reminders of his title run. Eddie's not coming off as a jerk, but as a guy who's just totally losing it, and that is great tv.
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Since: 5.3.03
From: TORONTO

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#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.39
I think it's too early to say whether the tide has shifted for sure, especially because the draft threatens to ruin that anyways. But based on what you mentioned there, yeah, SmackDown is starting to look pretty solid. Definitely better than they've been for the past several months.

But I look at Backlash and -- granted, partly because of Hogan -- the show looks solid, even with only five or six matches so far. They've built up the main stories and will continue to do so. Raw has always been able to do that and usually to make their PPV's seem somewhat important.

For Judgment Day, we've got, what? Cena/JBL, Eddie/Rey, Booker/Angle, but beyond that, I'm not sure. Now, mind you, SmackDown still has another month or so to build up its show. But I've seen them have momentum like this before, only to figure out a way to screw it up.



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Since: 6.1.02
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#4 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.94
I have to agree that I'm digging Smackdown right now, in addition to what you already mentioned they still have the Dudleyz looming in OVW, when they come back fresh it could be a nice addition as well as RVD whenever he comes back. I just wish they'd use Haas.

As for the ppvs I think Judgement Day is actually looking better. I have no interest in Batista/Triple H nor do I think it's going to be very good, Kane/Viscera will be horrible, Christian has nothing to do, Jericho/SHelton COULD be great, but Jericho seems to be half-assing it right now, the tag team turmoil is going to be a train wreck. The only thing worth seeing is probably Edge/Benoit, and Spaceman their reason for feuding A) Edge won the Money in the Bank B) Edge hit Benoit in the arm with the chair supposedly injuring his arm.

As for Judgement day. You got Cena/JBL, yeah it sucked the first time but an I Quit match is no DQ right? I think both will excel better in a brawl than a wrestling match. Eddie and Rey should be awesome since they'll give it more time than the WM match. Booker and Angle could be good to great also. There is also rumors of Big Show vs. Carlito, might not be a pretty match but they should make for great television leading up to the ppv. Then there is probably going to be MNM vs. face turned Bashams. I don't know if the Bashams as a face team is going to work, but that match has way more potentinal than Raw's tag team match. Then you got a cruiserweight Title Match. If there was just someone to take Orlando's US Title then I'd say it's a pretty solid show.

(edited by Quezzy on 29.4.05 0845)


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The Vile1
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Since: 4.9.02
From: California

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#5 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.23
Well wasn't the original idea for the Eddie/Rey feud devised by Eddie and Rey themselves? I think I remember reading how they presented the idea to start feuding again and have a match at Wrestlemania. Granted they have had much better matches in the past before...some on free TV . But the feud they are having right now is very compelling.

The Benoit/Edge feud goes further back than Wrestlemania. Benoit and Edge last year were friends and tag team champions. Edge went off the deep end and started to go loopy after he came back from his groin injury. It culminated at Taboo Tuesday when he was furious he didn't get voted in the world title match. He abandoned his tag team partner, Benoit, than attacked HBK later in his title match. Later he screwed Benoit out of the tag titles giving them back to La Resistance and gave him a brutal beatdown. So basically Benoit and Edge still had some past, unfinished business. Wrestlemania and the match on RAW the night after just kind of furthered it some.




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Since: 24.2.02
From: Bowels

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#6 Posted on | Instant Rating: 1.52
The Eddie/Rey thing is ok, but it was still a mostly by-the-numbers heel turn. Minor tiffs lead up to a confrontation where the to-be heel convinces the face that everything is fine, and after the face makes a mistake in a tag match and hits his partner, the betrayal is on.

I did like how Eddie just stood there watching the beating instead of doing it himself, though.



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Since: 12.2.03
From: New York, USA

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#7 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.37
Eddie-Rey is the best thing going on SD, but that's not saying much. I was actually watching SD this past week going "God this show is the pits.", and I'm not normally that harsh. Ok, so I used to not normally be that harsh. I don't get the love for MNM, as they seem so totally contrived to me and their manager is just so, Stacy Keibler(i.e. wretchedly annoying). I think the Cabana segment was going fine until they showed up, staking claim so soon over two established, talented wrestlers. I know that it was to advance the Eddie-Rey break-up angle, but still, they could have used an already existing tag team for this. SD hasn't been consistently better than Raw since about summer 2003, and as often I as hope that they'll get back on track they always manage to let me down by like, week 3.
As for Raw, I find much of their worse stuff to be more tolerable than SD's worse. This can very well change though, as Diva Search 2 has me contemplating taking a hiatus from WWE. Needless to say, Raw isn't impressing me much either, but I find it the better of two evils...maybe because of Michaels, the "live" factor and, well, I'm not sure. I just tend to feel it more.
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Since: 4.1.02
From: Dorchester, Ontario

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#8 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.14
I think I've been liking Smackdown more since the year started because of Angle being healthy enough to wrestle in at least one great match a month (vs. JBL, Jannetty and Eddie), and because I still think Smackdown has a higher ceiling for potential. The top guys on RAW have faced each other so much that all the matchups feel burned-out, whereas on Smackdown there's still some freshness since Cena has been basically kept away from the other main events (aside from Booker and Big Show) for the past year.



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JustinShapiro
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Since: 12.12.01
From: Pittsburgh, PA

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#9 Posted on | Instant Rating: 8.46
I agree with the Spaceman, Spiff, wholeheartedly, as Smackdown is a whole new show post-Mania and is kicking the behind of Raw, a whole old show. I think the biggest difference is Kurt Angle coming back to life, because having the healthier Kurt (or the Kurt who's still in bad shape but is willing his body to be great again) is like adding a brand new elite main eventer. He made the show in Chicago by having his best ever match with Eddie, and he made the main event last night.

Second biggest would be Cena and JBL reversing the champ/challenger roles, because Cena as the face champion is something new, interesting, and working a lot better than his counterpart on Raw. Layfield not having the belt makes his already terrific character even more enjoyable because everything no longer revolves around him and, as you said, let them shift the title picture to that big mix of guys gunning for the belt instead of just JBL hides from challenger.

Even though I think turning Eddie is the wrong move, the execution of the angle has been excellent, and lining him up for Cena is the best thing you can do for Cena short of switching guys from Raw. Will people boo him is another thing, but I think that even if they don't want to, he's great enough at playing a heel that Cena will be the face everywhere but the southwest.

Nothing else to add that you haven't listed (Carlito's Cabana being great, MNM having a fantastic act that was instantly put over strong and made brand new stars) except that I think it bears mentioning that Booker T has seemed totally rejuvenated since he signed that contract extension, both in terms of his motivation and their willingness to do something with him. The addition of Sharmell to his act has been awesome and they're really entertaining together. And not uncoincidentally, he's going from the horrific Heidenreich program to feuding with Angle (mixed tag with Karen!).


ETA:
    Originally posted by Big Bad, Bad Man
    I think I've been liking Smackdown more since the year started because of Angle being healthy enough to wrestle in at least one great match a month (vs. JBL, Jannetty and Eddie)


Exactly! Don't forget vs. Mysterio in Japan. Plus he gave Cena a super match at No Way Out and there was something with Michaels at Mania. It's been one heck of a remarkable year for him and I don't know how he's doing it.

(edited by JustinShapiro on 29.4.05 1814)
fuelinjected
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Since: 12.10.02
From: Canada

Since last post: 3263 days
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#10 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.79
I remember groaning when they first had Sharmell sitting in the crowd because I thought she'd take away from Booker T's already dull act. Instead she's added a new element to his character and is really entertaining. Unlike Billy/Torrie, Test/Stacy, Matt/Lita, and almost all the other real-life couples that pair up on screen, I can actually see why they're married. Now I just hope that thing with Heidenreich was a one off and he's not going to form a whacky tag team with him.

The draft could solidify Smackdown as a good show again or they could take away some of the key elements that are making it fun to watch again. It appears likely that Christian will be shifting to Smackdown, which would be tremendous. Plus I would think that Super Crazy and Psicosis would go to Smackdown. I'd put Psicosis with Eddy due to his long backstory as Rey's rival. Maybe bring in Super Crazy as Rey's buddy and they'd both be over right away from association.

I think one of the reasons that Smackdown is becoming more interesting is because the JBL act got tiresome on top. He's much better in a supporting role. Also, there's room for upward movement. On RAW, as good as it has been, you always know that Triple H is always going to be the focal point. I enjoy watching Batista and want him to be on top but we've seen this song and dance before with Chris Benoit and the matches won't be nearly as good this time.



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Since: 12.1.02
From: Indianapolis, IN; now residing in Suffolk, VA

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#11 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.52
Yeah, I agree that the Eddie/Rey thing has made for some very compelling television. And that right now, SmackDown! is the better brand-- primarily because RAW's World Title scene only involves Batista, Triple H and Edge at the moment.

After Backlash (assuming Batista wins, which seems to be the logical thing to do) I hope they give Triple H something non-World Title related to do for a change, and allow Batista to face somebody else.

And of course with the draft lottery, who knows what we'll be saying afterwards.



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Since: 28.2.02

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#12 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.48
Add me to the list of people who find Smackdown the more compelling show of late. I was heavily into RAW earlier this year, especially on the Batista Bandwagon, but the rematch feud has just left me...bored. The JR/HHH match was about the most mind-numbing main event in recent memory.

Smackdown has livened up, however, for all the reasons mentioned. I personally think the two best wrestlers in the company, Eddie and Angle, are on the show. JBL's completely won me over at this point. His chemistry with Angle is such that I almost think a heel v. heel feud would work with them. The fans would cheer Angle automatically, and he wouldn't even have to 'turn'. He could go back to attacking faces the next week and no one would blink. JBL's character is that loathesome and that well played.

The Eddie/Rey feud is really sucking me in, largely because of the acting involved. Just watching Eddie's face when he was on the apron, all those conflicting emotions, the rage, the resignation, the disappointment, and yet you could still tell he felt something for Rey.

I'm very much digging MNM, and not just because Malina (Melina?) is Nidia 2.0. Matt Morgan seems to have definite potential. The Big Show's as entertaining as he's ever been (I love the shushing before the big chop). Christian, my favorite thing to watch on RAW (except perhaps Muhammed Hassan), may be heading to Thursdays. Best of all, I never, ever have to watch a Simon Dean or Chris Masters segment.

Downside? I think Cena's development as a wrestler has been stunted, perhaps even gotten worse. As has been stated numerous times, more thug and less pandering is needed on the promo side as well. I'm hoping that Eddie's heel turn might lead to him giving Cena the feud of his life by Summerslam, though. And I just can't be bothered to care about Orlando Jordan unless JBL is yelling at him. Odd that two of the weakest points on the show are the two top belts.

I'd say it's actually not even close right now. Backlash looks good as a PPV, but the weekly television isn't nearly as compelling as what Smackdown's been doing since WM.



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BigSteve
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Since: 23.7.04
From: Baltimore, MD

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#13 Posted on | Instant Rating: 1.99
I was just thinking about this the last two weeks. It's good to see that I'm not alone. Raw isn't really bad, it's just really stale. A couple of weeks ago, when Raw opened with that Benoit vs. Edge match, I actually groaned. I know that there was no way that it could be a bad match, but it just seemed so stale since we just saw a good match between them two weeks before. How many ways can they shuffle the same core of about eight guys into matches with one another every single week? Plus, there is, of course, the Triple H factor and the rapid cooling of Batista (at least in my eyes; I still like him, but they haven't booked him correctly).

And I guess all of the reasons for Smackdown's resurgence have been mentioned, but I'll throw in my own perspective here. The Eddie and Rey breakup angle has been terrificly executed. Eddie's promos and his facial expressions, especially on Thursday, were just right on the money. I thought that it would be hard to turn Eddie heel, but I was wrong. Eddie is just such a great performer that I think at this point he'll be able to get it done. HE really is fantastic in a wide range of roles, and I seem to have forgotten that.

MNM is good, if for no other reason than that it's nice to see a tag team given a push so that we might see an actually tag team division. An because Melina is hot. And because I think they are actually pretty good in the ring. The Chavo-London program has been well done. It's been an actually cruiserweight program built up over a couple of months, and I think that it has hit big. And then there's Angle. Last year, I was hoping he would retire. He was a shell of his former self, and it made no sense for him to put his body through the punishment and possibly wind up paralyzed if he wasn't even going to get anything out of it. But now, every time he's called on, he has a great match. Some of them with great workers (Eddie, Rey), but a lot of them were with sub par workers (Cena, JBL, Jannetty). Plus, Carlito has been very good, and Booker has been rejuvenated. Even Heidenreich has been pretty, well, different, in his new role. Not necessarily funny, but very amusing.

Of course, there are still some downsides. I really don't like Cena. I know why he's the champ, and I hope that WWE makes him a big star. But he's a horrible worker, and his gimmick is really a parody of how any real person would act. I just don't get the appeal that he holds for people.
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Since: 3.1.02
From: Calgary

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#14 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.02
The problems with John Cena all stem from them trying to create some kind of inane hybrid of Stone Cold & The Rock, but infused with hip-hop style. It doesn't quite work. First of all, Heel Stone Cold and Heel Rock were very, very similar in style and tone to their face counterparts with only small subtleties making them effective heels. Heel Cena had cutting raps that were usually based in truth to a certain extent. Face Cena kisses ass. It seems that they don't really have a sense of what they want Cena to represent quite yet, so the result is a kind of nihilistic compromise between a bunch of different things. I was worried that they had the same kind of confusion with Batista, but the UK RAW made me at least a bit less worried since Big Dave seems to have a good grip of his character, even if the writers don't.

Then again, how long did it take guys like Benoit, Jericho, Mysterio, Triple H, Eddie, Chavo & the other veterans to find definitive characters? Five, six years at the least? Cena & Batista haven't been wrestling for that long, so how can they expect 'em to have the same level of characterization?



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Since: 25.11.02
From: Jersey

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#15 Posted on | Instant Rating: 1.64
    Originally posted by Freeway420
    The problems with John Cena all stem from them trying to create some kind of inane hybrid of Stone Cold & The Rock, but infused with hip-hop style. It doesn't quite work. First of all, Heel Stone Cold and Heel Rock were very, very similar in style and tone to their face counterparts with only small subtleties making them effective heels. Heel Cena had cutting raps that were usually based in truth to a certain extent. Face Cena kisses ass. It seems that they don't really have a sense of what they want Cena to represent quite yet, so the result is a kind of nihilistic compromise between a bunch of different things. I was worried that they had the same kind of confusion with Batista, but the UK RAW made me at least a bit less worried since Big Dave seems to have a good grip of his character, even if the writers don't.

    Then again, how long did it take guys like Benoit, Jericho, Mysterio, Triple H, Eddie, Chavo & the other veterans to find definitive characters? Five, six years at the least? Cena & Batista haven't been wrestling for that long, so how can they expect 'em to have the same level of characterization?


Rey Mysterio has a character? I mean, I love the guy, always have, but he's not exactly Mr. Charisma. I mean, he makes Benoit look like the Rock.
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