SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
WWE NETWORK REVIEW: TALKING SMACK
NOVEMBER 28, 2020
REVIEW BY NICK MORGAN, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR
Hosts: Kayla Braxton, Paul Heyman
This week’s guests: Dolph Zeigler & Robert Roode, Bianca Belair, Kevin Owens
– Quick thought here. WWE Network has started putting commercials at the beginning of their shows and they also replay if you leave and come back. It is really annoying, to be paying for a service and now have to suffer through yet another Progressive commercial. If I see another one, I may just throw the TV through the window. Okay, I am calmer now, on with the show.
– Kayla introduced the show, and noted her co-host, Paul Heyman who was clearly upset and Kayla asked him why. Kayla discussed the tension between Roman and Jey, and the fact that Kevin Owens called out Roman. This is another example of how having Paul on Talking Smack lets Paul both promote and add to the whole Roman Reigns storyline.
– When Kayla asked Paul what he thought about Owens, he said it didn’t matter what he thought, all that matters is what Roman Reigns (the Tribal Chief, the Head of the Table) thinks. This led to Paul saying, “let’s get this over with” and started to call out Kevin Owens to join the show. Kayla stepped in and said that was not the order of the show and Owens was not the first guest. Paul said so “change the order,” but Kayla stayed with the order and had Dolph Zeigler and Robert Roode come out.
– Paul totally ignored them. Kayla asked about their win over the Street Profits and Roode said they were happy and that the next time they face the Profits, they would win the titles. Kayla asked them about Cesaro and Nakamura, and Zeigler simply said they are the best tag team and Cesaro and Nakamura weren’t in the building, so they don’t get a shot. At this point, Paul took over the show and really through Kayla under the bus, playing up the whole point that he was upset about the events on Smackdown with Kevin Owens.
– Paul asked Zeigler and Roode who they would want to defend the title against at WrestleMania (if they win the titles from the Street Profits). They took the opportunity to build up both the Street Profits and Cesaro and Nakamura, before dumping on them. Pretty standard heel promo. With that they were ushered off the set, and Paul took the opportunity to dump on Kayla some more.
– Next up was Bianca Belair. Paul was very gentlemanly to Bianca. I don’t know why but Kayla started off talking about Bianca’s attire and how good she looked. (Hmmm, they don’t do that with the men, Vince showing his true colors?). After a quick recap of Bianca beating Natalya, the conversation turned to Bayley and talked about their Twitter war, obviously building up this growing rivalry, and what should be Bianca’s next major program. Which, quite frankly, I am looking forward to, it should be good and great for Bianca to work with a wrestler like Bayley.
– Paul said directly to Bianca, that she is the future of the WWE, that is really big and he seemed to really and honestly give her a ton of props, totally building her up, even to the point of saying that she deserves to be called the “EST of WWE”. Big news.
– Then it come to Kevin Owens. Paul shook his hand and told Owens that he has a lot of respect for Owens. He then started saying nasty things about him but couching them in compliments by saying he liked them. For example, Paul said his liked the fact that people call Owens a scum bag behind his back and that none of his tag team partners can trust him. He then told Owens that he was at a crossroads in his career. He can either coast along as a semi-main eventer, or he can follow in the footsteps of the Undertaker and be a perennial WrestleMania main eventer. Paul said that Roman Reigns is the number one and that great champions are defined by the opponents they take down. If Owens takes on Roman, even when he loses, he will have solidified his legacy by just sharing the stage with Roman. A great monologue from Paul.
– After this Owens asked him if he was done and then Kevin basically said that when Roman stops having his cousin do his dirty work for him and find his courage, that Kevin Owens will be there. Kevin then paraphrased Roman from way back when by saying he is “not a good guy, not a bad guy, I am the guy who will beat Roman Reigns and take his championship.” With that he shook Paul’s hand and Paul told him that he (Paul) would have to convey that to Roman, and that is was not just business, but that he had to do it on a personal level.
– After Kevin left, Paul looked very serious and Kayla asked him if everything he had just said were things that Roman would approve of. Instead of answering, Paul noted that Kayla is always asking people to take their microphones with them when they leave but she didn’t say anything to Kevin about his mike which he left on the table.
– Kayla signed off the show in a very flustered manner, actually doing a good job of acting like what had just happened had totally thrown her for a loop. Great ending segment from the moment Owens walked onto the set!
FINAL THOUGHTS: Okay, so what to think of this show. Again, very watchable at only 24 minutes, though I will say that something is going on with the WWE Network on my Roku device, it does not let me rewind and replay things without going all the way back to the beginning and watching the stupid Progressive commercial. Not sure what is happening as there is full functionality using my iPad. Sigh. Will have to figure this out. Okay, rant over.
As for the show, the intro segment was fun, and then you can totally fast forward through Dolph and Roode. Bianca was okay and I really liked Paul building her up big time and it really looks like she and Bayley will be having a feud, probably through and until the Royal Rumble. You have to watch the last segment with Paul and Kevin. It was great, and Kevin using Roman’s own “I am not a good guy… blah… blah” speech was just genius. This feud could be really great, and even should Kevin lose (which I expect) this could be the match to reignite his standing in WWE after quite a long time of just being an afterthought.
I will say this however: This whole thing should be on the main show. Why they are expending this mission statement moment on Talking Smack is beyond me. If you are enjoying Smackdown and the Roman Reigns angle, you have to go and watch this segment, you have to. As Talking Smack is available on the “free version” of the WWE Network, I totally and urgently recommend that you get that version if you don’t already have the regular Network and watch Talking Smack from this week. Just go to the last segment, around the 17-minute mark, and soak it in.
Well, that is it for now, see you all next week. Until then, take care and stay safe.