Originally written December 23, 2012 on Wrestling Truth:
A lot has happened in the past week since TLC, The Shield continue to be on the rise, AJ turned heel and brought Big E. Langston with her, while helping Ziggler to climb to the top of the WWE by any current measurable terms, i.e. he beat John Cena in a match. In TNA Aces & 8s are still making a stir and Austin Aries is still the best thing going, but did anyone in the company do enough this week to make it onto the chart? Let’s find out… Weekly Top Ten: 1st Place: Dolph Ziggler (10/10) This might not have been the case judging by TLC alone, since sure Ziggler beat Cena with AJ’s help, but all he did was make sure he still kept a hold on his MitB briefcase. However for the rest of the week his new association with AJ also kept him from losing to Cena in two more matches, at least not in the conventional means anyway. Anyone being able to dodge getting pinned or made to submit in the middle of the ring by Cena three times in a row in the same week must be doing pretty well for himself and I hope this trend continues. I have a feeling about Ziggler with this new pairing, it is like when JBL hooked up with his cabinet, somehow a heel has the chance to shine and is associated with people who can help him do that and at the same time not take away his spotlight. AJ is a major focus of the company but Ziggler is still better on the mic, and Big E. is massive, but far too new of a character to outshine Ziggler as a heel. All in all it looks like the Show Off is set for stardom. 2nd Place: The Shield (9/10) The WWE’s newest power group stepped it up to another level this week as they shone in their high profile TLC match. They won the match and continued their vicious ways on Raw, attacking both Ric Flair and Tommy Dreamer, two legends in their fields, and then took out Brodus Clay and Sin Cara on Smackdown, just because they could. Unless things take a sharp turn for the worse it seems like what happened to Nexus is definitely not going to happen to this group of rookie, outsider upstarts. 3rd Place: The Rhodes Scholars (8/10) The reunited team earned themselves a shot at the tag team titles, and then they lost, but at least they did so in style. Still I am starting to worry that if they don’t win the titles soon then the team will start to look like a joke, and Cody’s moustache certainly doesn’t help with that fear. Still the team generally are still on a winning trend and their partnership gives both men something to do while the singles divisions in the WWE shift around a bit, so overall the Rhodes Scholars experience is still a positive. 4th Place: Big Show (7/10) The World Heavyweight Champion somehow managed to retain his title at TLC, namely with a big f*ck-off chair. He was also lucky to keep the title on Raw when he was left laying by Sheamus and Ziggler looked primed to take his title by cashing in his MitB briefcase, that was before Cena got involved of course. It looks like Sheamus and Show might be having a fourth match for the title but I kind of hope not as their first match was clearly their best and each subsequent match has gotten a little bit more stale. Then again since Cena denied Ziggler I’m really not sure who could face the World’s Largest Athlete next; Del Rio and Miz seem too newly turned and Orton is out right now, well at least it won’t be Cena, which it easily could have been if Sunday had gone a little differently. 5th Place: C.M. Punk (6/10) The WWE champion limps into fifth place, using his promo skills to rile up the fans on Raw, Smackdown and at TLC. It seems like Punk is going for the sexist angle, at least on Smackdown, and perhaps this is all part of the WWE trying to attract a female audience, by having Punk be the guy that they are supposed to hate more than anyone else. I’m not sure when the WWE will put Punk back in action as he is apparently ready to go right now, but the company have decided that discretion is the better part of valour. He’ll probably go straight into his title match with Ryback in the new year and then do a bunch of talking with the Rock before their match at the Rumble, just to make sure he is 100% for it. So while he will remain safe and protected, he probably won’t see the top spot of the chart any time soon while we also have Ziggler and the Shield tearing it up every week. 6th Place: AJ (5/10) Moving from man to man the cunning ‘girl nerd’ shows just how far being cute and intelligent can get you in a company, just so long as you are willing to throw it about a lot. I’m definitely split on whether or not AJ is a good role model for young girls, although if you look at the current state of the divas division compared to her individual success you could say she certainly is a positive figure, after all she gets like ten times the amount of airtime of any other woman in the company, and that probably means more money and success overall, so maybe switching partners more than outfits is the way to go in the WWE. 7th Place: Antonio Cesaro (4/10) The US champ bested Truth at TLC, then dodged a Ryback bullet on Raw, but the same could not be said on Smackdown when he was finally fed to Big Hungry. Still like with Sheamus before, Cesaro was made to look good while squaring off against one of the company’s top new faces, despite still eating the pin. I’m still a little bit disappointed that the WWE decided to have the rematch on Smackdown though as if their Raw encounter had gone unchallenged they could have met up again at Wrestlemania in a much more competitive match, whereas now there is virtually no point. 8th Place: Eve (3/10) The Divas champion should be acknowledged for successfully defending her title twice this week, although not that it means that much and not that they were really competitive matchups. Honestly the Divas division needs to be revamped like the tag team division has been this year, and quick! 9th Place: 3MB (2/10) The three man band were involved in TLC with interesting results, they rock, that’s it. 10th Place: Big E. Langston (1/10) The Big E made a big debute, slamming Cena twice in a week and leaving him laying. Hitching a ride to Ziggler’s wagon isn’t the worst move for a new edition to the roster, after all the only other way to introduce this monster of a man was to make him the new Ryback, and enough jokes to that effect have been done already. As it is the guy has a good chance to act as Ziggler’s back up and forge a name for himself while doing it, eventually leading to his own big push perhaps. 2012-2013 Season Top Ten: 1st Place: Alberto Del Rio (179) 2nd Place: The Big Show (175) 3rd Place: Daniel Bryan (174) 4th Place: C.M. Punk (146) 5th Place: Dolph Ziggler (139) 6th Place: Damien Sandow (131) 7th Place: Robert Roode (116) 8th Place: Bully Ray (103) 9th Place: Cody Rhodes (90) 10th Place: Antonio Cesaro (78) (Heel Hall of Fame) **Heel Report 2010-2011 Winner: The Miz** **Heel Report 2011-2012 Winner: Cody Rhodes** Weekly Filler: The Face-Off: Terrible Slammy Cuts I don’t know who was vision mixing this week or who was in charge of production but the whole of Raw seemed a little off to me. Maybe they were trying to give it an award show feel by changing how the show was shot and cut in parts, but if so they messed up for the most part since there were a lot of points where the editing looked like they were making mistakes and there were lots of inconsistencies. For instance the appearance of the Boogie Man in the middle of an award, cutting to adverts and then coming back with the Boogie Man having gone with no reason and the award carrying on. I’m sure they meant for it to be a mysterious disappearance or something, but because it was barely acknowledged and didn’t lead to anything it just looked weird, that and the sudden appearance of Brad Maddox without him actually doing anything either, it was just a shambles. Then there was the entrances to a match happening and then cutting to a backstage segment between Ziggler and Vickie and an ad break before resuming, not even having the match in progress. How the hell long were the guys just standing out there?! Weird. Face the Facts: The Shield vs. Ryback & Hell No This is why professional wrestling can be better than watching sports and drama combined, because of the organic shifting and changing of the landscape. Now sure injuries and political movings can lead to terrible and disappointing occurrences, but they can also lead to a match like this, where some of the WWE’s top new talent were allowed to showcase their skills and everyone went over and looked good, all while putting on a great match for the fans and actually validating the gimmick PPVs namesake. With Punk’s injury the WWE pulled one hell of a risk by putting the untested Shield (in terms of WWE PPV matches) against the still developing Ryback and Team Hell No, it could have all gone **** up but instead it worked to perfection and they have seemingly secured the Shield’s spot as a force to be reckoned with in the company. On the Rise: Austin Aries While there was no room on the chart this week for any TNA talent I couldn’t let this report go by without giving props to Austin Aries for his performance on Impact. Now he might have been unsuccessful in his match with Jeff Hardy for the world title, after getting screwed by Roode, but he looked great in the match as per usual and more importantly he actually made light of the terrible, terrible inner monologues of Jeff Hardy, which have gone unnoticed so far despite their glaring ********, he truly is the Greatest Man Who Ever Lived. Flat-Footed: Prime Time Players Music Now I don’t know if you’ve been paying attention but of all the things I like about professional wrestling, one of my biggest loves is the music that comes out of it, at least in the WWE anyway. Somehow time after time the WWE comes up with great themes for their superstars and it really can help get a guy over with me and with the crowd in general. However they seem to have dropped the ball with the Prime Time Players’ new theme as their last one seemed far better than this non-descript new one. There is just nothing to it and it doesn’t encourage any kind of dancing or arrogance, or anything really to do with what the team appears to be all about, so fail I think. That’s all for this week, Punk continues to be the WWE champ and by the time the Rumble rolls around, even if he loses to the Rock, he will have secured himself a title reign that shouldn’t be broken for years to come, not bad for a guy who came into the WWE as some guy from the indies who they had no idea what to do with. I’m glad that Del Rio has apparently gone face, even if it doesn’t really make any sense. Honestly having him at the head of both of my overall charts bugs the hell out of me, despite it all being based on numbers. I remember how much I liked the guy when he came into the WWE, but then after his WWE title win you realised just how stale a character he was compared to Punk, and even Cena to some extent, ever since then he seems to have been involved in feuds that go nowhere and mean next to nothing, maybe as a face he will do better, after all his non-WWE persona was certainly used to it, but how will he adapt after playing the Mexican Aristocrat for the past couple of years? Does anybody really care? For now this is James Wright signing off.
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