SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
WrestleMania 32 Reax
– Matt Prentice (5.0): The work on the undercard was above average, but two underwhelming main events and a show that dragged two hours longer than needed really hurt. It was impossible to care about anything by the end of the night.
– William Postle (3.0): Best Match: Women’s Title. Worst Match: Lesnar-Ambrose. I feel bad for the people who paid to that show live. It seemed, top to bottom, designed to give the finger to what Vince would consider “hardcore fans.” The match finishes were either puzzling or disappointing. This show had some bright spots like Zayn-Owens in the ladder match and the women’s match, but the burdensome length and the disappointing booking made this show a bad experience overall. After Friday night, I was amazed by Zayn-Nakamura and enthusiastic about continuing my Network subscription. After Sunday night, I cancelled. I like NXT and watching old favorite matches, but in doing so I support the dismal modern WWE product and I’m sick of it.
– John in Cedar Hill, Tex. (6.5): Best: Jericho-Styles. Worst: Battle Royal. Reviewing the show after a night’s sleep is like coming down from a sugar rush. You see things more clearly after the impact of the crazy spots wears off. I thought the Street Fight did more harm that good to Ambrose. He couldn’t win even with all the weapons. And doesn’t the fact that Brock Lesnar refused to use the weapons make him the babyface? Really, if Brock is never going to put anyone over what’s the use of employing him?
Similarly, what is the value of The Rock coming out once a year to make members of the current roster look like blithering idiots? He, along with Michaels, Foley and Austin, could do the company so much good by actually putting someone over. Instead, the message is that all the dominant, clever wrestlers aren’t actually wrestling anymore, and the current product sucks.
Fans will remember Shane’s jump from the cage, but what does it say that a non-wrestler can go toe-to-toe with the legendary Undertaker for 30 minutes? What is the value of having Shane’s stunts make people forget the Ambrose match? And could they not have at least tried to bring closure to the idiotic storyline that started that match? Finally, the way Hunter lingered at ringside after Reigns left made me think it was his last match. If so, why not make it part of the storyline?
– Eric L. (1.0): Wrestlemania is no longer the showcase of the immortals, it is a showcase of terrible booking and mid-carders. I’m trying real hard today to give a crap about WWE moving forward. Can you tell me who (other than Charlotte and Ric Flair) came out looking like a star Sunday night? I can’t. Bray Wyatt, you got all the charisma and talent in the world, but it won’t stop you from getting buried in 30 seconds flat. Same for the most over act in WWE. New Day’s Agent: “Listen I know you’re the most over act in WWE right now, the Booty-O’s are terrific! But you’re gonna take the L from European jobber squad so three retired legends can get over, but don’t worry you can eat a stunner, too! Didn’t you say Stone Cold was your fav?” Battle Royal: Who is Shaq? I think he’s the Icy Hot guy right? Dean Ambrose is a main-eventer now? He should join R-Truth and Goldust to be the Golden Truth Asylum. Think of all the merch! Zack Ryder will lose the IC Title on Raw (he did). And, suffering suckatash for last: muting the crowd will only make them boo louder.
– Barrie McCabe of Scotland (4.0): Best: IC Title ladder match. Worst: New Day vs. LEague of Nations. Overall, a frustrating WrestleMania, but no surprise considering the bumpy Road to WrestleMania. A fantastic venue, though, with the real mania moment being the sight of about 100,000 wrestling fans. It would be great to see AT&T Stadium host a WrestleMania worthy of it in the future.