The old adage, “If it seems too good to be true, it probably is,” would have been the perfect lesson for the main character to repeat in his head through this book. What is it about a slick man promising a lot of money that people just jump at the chance of? Oh right, the promise of a lot of money.
The ending is predictable, which is likely why it’s left for the very end. The majority of this book is about Clay Carter’s rise to the King of Torts than it is about the inevitable fall he suffers once at the top. Which, of course, leaves a lot to be desired in the end for resolution.
This novel is less about the cases and the torts than it is about Carter’s life throughout the rise and fall. Carter’s relationships, his friends, how he spends his newfound money. However, despite it being about Carter, Carter as a character has no real depth. He admits to losing sleep or feeling bad, but none of it has any consequence besides him saying so. If Grisham really wanted a cost of being a millionaire story then this should have been given a little more in depth.
Reasons to Read:
- It’s John Grisham, his writing is still incredible
- Interesting look at lawyers who sue major drug companies only looking to settle
Reasons Not to Read:
- Flat characters
Every Wednesday my book club gets together and discusses what books we are currently reading. It’s an off day, where we could have had time over the weekend to finish that reading, or really get into a new book. It’s also a usual day where nothing too big is going on. I’d like to extend this so that I can discuss novels with anyone, everyone. Best way to find new novels are to discuss them!
I am about halfway through this book. My goal is to finish it by the weekend so that I can go and see the movie. I’m semi-obsessive that way. Excellent novel, but the problem with Nicholas Sparks is if you have read more than one, you probably get the formula and can predict what is going to happen. (The Last Song was so horribly predictable for me) It doesn’t make it any less amazing, and at halfway through I still can not be positive I am right about what I think is going to happen.
Again, about halfway through this novel, but it’s one of those I read to relax, so it’s going to go slower. End of the night I try to get 10-20 pages in of it. Intriguing and probably the first Grisham novel I’ve read since Runaway Jury, and I’m sure that was at least five years ago? With an average of 3 star rating on Amazon I’m wondering if something blows up in the story, because as of right now I would give it at least 4 stars.
This might be considered cheating slightly, since I have not technically started it, but I will have this finished by the end of today. Manga novels are easy to race through, even when absorbing every little detail, and boy to these have details. Okay, technically this isn’t manga, it’s manwha since it comes from Korea. Sorry for lying to you!
So tell me, what are you reading this Wednesday?
As my issue was with NXT yesterday I have with Superstars today. There were only three matches making it difficult to have a top four things. Instead I’m just going to explore the aspects of the show.
The matches feature the usual suspects, the first match of the night being Justin Gabriel and Jinder Mahal. Justin Gabriel comes out sporting a hairstyle that reminds me of a stegosaurus and seems to be equally as durable. Despite rolling around on it even when it seems to start to go flat he flicks his wrist and POOF instead stego-hawk. Cool? Jinder comes out, with a mic, and gives his entire promo in a Punjabi dialect that gets him instant boos. Unfortunately Gabriel wins with the only move he has, which is a 450 Splash. I was impressed with this 450 Splash the first time I saw it with Gabriel because it was the first time I had seen it. Now I’ve seen several other wrestlers in other companies do the same thing… and better. Bored! But Jinder has grown solidly as a wrestler and while he’s still not one of my favorites I still enjoy watching him.
The second match of the evening moves us into the Raw portion, announced by the ever handsome Scott Stanford and that other guy he sits with. (Josh Mathews) The first match is Yoshi Tatus vs. Tyson Kidd. Yoshi is again sans face paint which is disappointing but these two put on a long match that never fails to entertain. However I kind of lose interest in a match when Mathews quips, “Their best feud so far has been on twitter.” Wait, what? So their in-ring work has not been their best feud? I know they are meant to push twitter but perhaps better wording would have been more succinct in this instance.
The last match of the night is Drew McIntyre vs. John Morrison. Would you believe that Drew McIntyre wins? Me either, but it’s true! That’s all that needs to be said here. I love Morrison but McIntyre deserved the win and the two men looked good in this match and made this win a step up for McIntyre, even if Morrison has been their own “loser” of late.
The last aspect is the aspect that is always my favorite part of the show, which is Scott Stanford. It was almost like a different man sitting out there. Almost. Is he still the one who calls the best during matches, of course? And he did seem to be getting a little Not PG? (“When those two were involved years ago-” “The last time these two hooked up-” “Unbelievable back and forth action!”) Which could just be a nod to us twitter crowd who constantly listen for those little things. He was full of excitement and still is the only man I think concentrates more on the men out in the ring than anything else going on around him. He had a few of his usual good lines, “And I quote… from Yoshi Tatsu,” and, “Is he looking for Hornswoggle, what’s Drew doing under there?” Still, my darling commentator seemed to not be himself. I look forward to the goofy lines that sell the show, and while tonight’s matches held up on their own, I hope next week sees the return of that same loveable man!
Last night’s RAW was a disappointment to most who watched it. Perhaps not everyone thought it was awful but the majority of the people I had spoken to were unhappy with Monday Night Raw.
While the show did have a couple of good highlights, there was a couple of interesting matches that were overshadowed by everything going on. Even John Morrison did not lose in three minutes and put on an entertaining match with Wade Barrett.
Instead of doing four reasons to watch Raw, though, I’m going to tell you the four things that should have chased people away:
4. Michael Cole vs. JR
There was not a match in itself last night but Michael Cole did issue JR a challenge. JR was not there to accept or refuse. Cole told JR if JR beats him in the Cole Challenge than Cole will quit. I have always been a supporter of Cole. While not thinking he was the best commentator he does what he does well, which is mostly get the audience to root for or boo a man. Even if you do not realize it’s happening, he’s swaying your decisions, just like he does on whether you like him or not. However this is a wrestling show. If you want the commentators to do something it should be a plotline revolving around a Superstar, not around the commentators. For example, Matt Striker coming out as Tyson Kidd’s manager on Superstars a few months back. That worked. Striker has the personality and it was still more about Kidd than it was Striker. John Cena and JR vs. Alberto Del Rio and Cole was about Cole and JR, not the Superstars.
Many of you will ask if I would feel differently if it was Scott Stanford issuing a challenge to Jack Korpela. Nope. These men are good at speaking. They are not wrestlers. They announce matches and put over the Superstars. That is what they are supposed to do. Not promote themselves.
3. CM Punk
I loved CM Punk a few months ago when he was ready to quit. Now CM Punk sounds angry for the sake of being angry and I can not get back behind him. I was bored enough during Punk’s speaking I got up and left the room to go play with one of the cats for awhile.
2. John Cena announcing his tag partner as The Rock
Unfortunately this was the most anticlimactic moment in awhile. WWE had announced this back in September and so when it came time for Cena to actually make it official I could not bring myself to care. I am excited to see The Rock do something, but The Rock has already “come back” and has not made a lot of appearances since. I’m a big Rock fan and still I am not excited to see him in Survivor Series. There should have been more build or at least a lack of spilling this match at the pay-per-view. WWE holds on to its spoilers so hard, why did this one have to leak?
1. Does He Have a Pulse/Recap
Just two days ago I complained that the Pre Show was one large Raw recap show, when Raw has enough recaps. In case you missed it, here’s where Raw recaps: NXT, Superstars, Smackdown, Pre Shows, and Bottom Line. To name a few. To be honest I do not watch After Burn but I’m guessing it does much of the same thing.
Raw became it’s own recap show last night. Triple H, who we all knew was injured from when Kevin Nash threw him to the ring Sunday night, decided he has too much pride to let that take him out. So he had to be assaulted with a sledgehammer and proceed to have a seizure. Then be assaulted again as he was being lifted into the ambulance. Triple H does not go down easily.
After the first half an hour of this, and then a commercial break, we come back to, you guessed it, a recap. A recap of what just happened not ten minutes ago! Then the show does something later that I can not believe it didn’t think better of. It recapped this again.
I hate recaps. I want them to go away. Or at least not take up nearly a half an hour of a two hours show. But this did not repulse me nearly as much as the line, “Does he have a pulse?” Don’t you think you are pushing it a bit, Triple H? You can’t admit you were injured so we have to go so far as to try to believe you might have died from these attacks?
These bits were enough in the show to make me lose a lot of faith, and it only took one episode. I won’t stop watching because I still love WWE. But why is it my least favorite show but out by them is the main one?
When asked to name one thing people liked least about last night’s RAW here are a few of the smatterings of replies I received:
TheSupremeForce: Raw being a recap show for itself just to ensure that every person on the planet saw the stupid opening segment.
BizarroDoom: No Daniel Bryan. Again. And, if he HAD been on, he would’ve lost. Again.
StanfordArmy: CM Punk and his long promos. They were interesting once. No longer.
Yawsrko: Not enough John Laurinaitis and too much Hunter. And one line: “Does he have a pulse?”
Right2PlayGod: a lack of @scottstanford1 Honestly the tag match while good is what we’ve been seeing for weeks. Orton v Rhodes, sheamus v christian. Its over played. I think Orton Rhodes isn’t done just yet but .christian sheamus is killing me
meatredfish: Cole was annoying
Pichigo_Soul: Johnny Ace
Samalamalamalam: The one thing that really annoyed me tonight was Johnny Ace’s promo skills.
ImAMelFo: Didn’t like Cody losing for the 2nd night in a row. He’s ur IC champ, & he is being booked to lose clean which makes him weak.
mastersolace: the fact that John Laryngitis is @WWERawGM and he ain’t smart enough to pronounce Universe.
Shanicesaunt: that they kept replaying nash attacking the game
OWA_Sephiroth: Zack Ryder should’ve been in that main event. If there’s no follow up, then they absolutely blue-balled us.
Once again it was time to predict a pay-per-view. No one wanted to admit going in they were not confident in their predictions, but perhaps despite all of our griping over the weeks they may have done a good job lining up this pay-per-view. Vengeance was hard to predict and for the most part had pretty good matches.
Here’s how the six of us lined up this time:
Air Boom vs. Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler
Air Boom is on a roll and Swagger and Ziggler just can’t seem to work consistently together. However I can’t say Air Boom is going to win. I’m not sure if it’s my love for the two Heels in this match or what, but I’m going with Winner: Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler
JackDolph. I think the titles are changing hands, and that Dolph is going to be holding 2 titles, if only for an hour. Winner: Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler
I HATE AIR BOOM. I FUCKING DESPISE AIR BOOM. AIR BOOM SUCKS. I HOPE AIR BOOM CHOKES TO DEATH ON A BOWL OF *censored*. DID I MENTION I DON’T LIKE AIR BOOM? Anyway…I’m giving this to Swagger and Ziggler so they can continue to strengthen Vickie’s stable. PLUS I HATE AIR BOOM. I never said my hate was rational, either. But it exists and I must acknowledge it. Winner: Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler
I wasn’t going to pick them, then I found out Dolph has two matches and not one. I see Ziggler leaving with gold tonight, but I don’t think they’re going to give him the status as double champion. Winner: Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler
AirBoom have brought interest back to the titles, Swaggler have provided good opposition for them. I reckon Swaggler will finally get the titles off AirBoom. Winner: Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler
This match scares me. I’m afraid they’re going to pull the trigger on the Ziggler/Swagger pairing too soon, which means they lose. I’m going to try to be optimistic and pick Zig Swagg to win. Winner: Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler
Winner: Air Boom
Dolph Ziggler vs. Zack Ryder
This is a great push for Ryder, but Ziggler is on fire. Ziggler can’t move up yet to the main title belt when there is such an array of storyline going for it already. Better to keep the title on Ziggler and still let Ryder look like a champ. Winner: Dolph Ziggler
@SirTweets_a lot Prediction:
Now this match, I have put A LOT of thought into. Follow me on this. If Zack Ryder has anybody in his corner, he will lose. If Dolph has Swagger and Vickie in his corner, and they DO NOT get banned from ringside, Ryder will win via miscommunication between Dolph and Jack/Vickie. HOWEVER. If Swagger and Guerrero get banned from ringside at any time before/during the match, Ziggles wins. Winner: Zack Ryder (because of the stips and what happened in the match)
Zack Ryder. Not saying this because you’re a Zack fan or Stanford junkie, saying it because Zack’s earned the push *and* if Cody wins against RKO, retaining the IC belt (which is more prestigious than the US one), Vickie’s stable won’t need a second win for this PPV. Winner: Zack Ryder
It may be a massive want pick at this point, but WWE has clearly noticed Ryder’s efforts. I think they might give him the US title here Ziggler has two matches, Ryder can beat him in the second match of the night. It allows the feud to continue, Ryder gets his opportunity. Winner: Zack Ryder
If WWE tease Broskis this much with a Ryder title match on a PPV and don’t give him a title people will probably give up on him (through no fault of his own). So I’ll predict Ryder for the win and maybe some kind of guff about how he’s double champion (Internet Champ) and Ziggler isn’t. That’s be interesting in my opinion. Winner: Zack Ryder
I’m terrified that Ryder wins this, which would be too soon. I’m picking Ziggler though, out of the HOPE that the WWE gets this one correct. Ziggler needs to leave Vengeance with two Titles. Ryder can take the title from him later (leading the Swagger vs Ziggler feud that I’m not quite ready for yet). Winner: Dolph Ziggler
Winner: Dolph Ziggler
Beth Phoenix vs. Eve Torres
I have nothing invested in this match at all. Letting Eve win proves nothing but that we should not take these Divas of Doom seriously. Winner: Beth Phoenix
The only Superstar that I hate more than Eve is Riley. If Eve were to win, I would have a hissy fit. Beth, in hopefully dominating fashion. Winner: Beth Phoenix
lol ok, well now that my feelings are out of the way, here’s hoping Beth. I’m not ready to let the “Divas of Doom” go yet. Especially to Eve Torres. If Eve had the ‘it’ factor, maybe, and fine, but…no. Keep that ugly-ass designed-by-a-7-yr-old title belt on Beth for now. Winner: Beth Phoenix
They just gave Beth the belt, I can’t see them taking it off her this soon. I think she’s going to get a good reign with it, and the only person I see taking it away from her, is Natalya down the road. Winner: Beth Phoenix
Beth has been champion for about 47 minutes (that’s how long it’s been since the last PPV… right?) so she’ll keep it. Maybe a Kelly heel turn on Eve cos KK didn’t get a rematch. (I admit I’ve heard rumours of a KK heel turn on the net, I’m predicting it will happen now.) Winner: Beth Phoenix
Beth needs to keep the title or they might as well scrap the entire angle and start over. Winner: Beth Phoenix
Winner: Beth Phoenix
Christian vs. Sheamus
Has Christian really won any of his feuds since losing the title? Winner: Sheamus
I think that it is finally time for Christian to be buried, and done with this “One more match” fiasco. Sheamus will win, and I foresee Christian being either an Intercontinental or Tag Champ in the near future. Winner: Sheamus
Hmm. I typed Sheamus as the winner, then backspaced. Because Vickie can’t have 3 losses in her stable in the same PPV…BUT…it really doesn’t matter *who* gets the win, Christian or Sheamus, since it’s not like either *needs* to get over…hmm. I’ll say Christian if only to have a bigger, better, badder #FELLABRATION at the end of the PPV. Winner: Christian
Not sure what they’re doing with Christian these days, but it seems as if Sheamus has been dominating most of this feud. Christian can certainly use the win here a lot more than Sheamus can at this point. Winner: Christian
They’ve managed to build an interesting feud based on nothing but the fact they both didn’t have a feud! As I’m expecting a (probably not so) surprise return in another match that means the WHC will be tied up for at least another PPV I think this feud will keep going, therefore a Christian win is needed. Winner: Christian
Christian seems to currently be the “filler heel” used to give wins to faces at ppv’s. They can’t do it to Jericho or Punk right now, so that leaves Christian and the Awesome Truth. Winner: Sheamus
R-Truth and The Miz vs. CM Punk and Triple H
R-Truth and The Miz are great, but Punk and Triple H are not going to lose to them. Winner: CM Punk and Triple H
If something important were on the line, Punk and HHH, but since it’s just a bunch of mad guys, Awesome Troof. Winner: R-Truth and The Miz
Ugh….Punk and Hunter, because Hunter can’t swallow his ego enough to lose at a PPV, even though a PPV Payday is a guarantee for him. Not breaking Taker’s streak and ‘being returned to the roster full-time’ “requires” a Triple H win. To which, I boo, hiss and throw shit. Winner: CM Punk and Triple H
This will hardly be a clean call, but I think this feud is going beyond this PPV. It should, and them stealing the win helps. Winner: R-Truth and The Miz
I don’t see anything that would make a Punk/Trips win make sense. Which if anything should mean I go straight for a Punk/Trips win, however I’ll say the WWE will get this right. Nash will return, Michaels’ (who’ll undoubtedly feature in the PPV earlier on) music will hit but it’ll all be some kind of Laurinitis screw job and he won’t come out. Miz/Truth win. Winner: R-Truth and The Miz
I only see the Awesome Truth winning if there’s a run in or Triple H turns on Punk. I’m guessing they don’t do that here, since I’m already predicting a run in during ADR/Cena. Therefore, I guess I have to go with Punk/HHH even though Miz/Truth are 8000 times better. I hope to be wrong here. Winner: CM Punk and Triple H
Winner: R-Truth and The Miz
Cody Rhodes vs. Randy Orton
I want Cody to win, but Randy’s been beaten too many times recently. They can’t have one of their big names going down so many times in a row. Winner: Randy Orton
If the match continues to be non-title, I think that Randy will win, but if the title is put on the line, Cody will win via dirty tactics. Winner: Randy Orton
In my heart, I want this to be Cody. I honestly don’t know. I know Randy’s wanting to work this program with Cody, so I’m hoping that Creative indulges him and allows Cody to go over. He doesn’t have to go over cleanly quite yet; just over. I would like to see this extend at least as long as Big Show and Mark Henry; I also wish Ted hadn’t been separated from Cody quite yet, because Legacy still has a lot of story they could be telling. But we’ll go with Cody via a DQ or dirty win as my prediction. Winner: Cody Rhodes
Hardest call really, but I think they’re going to make Cody a main event guy with this feud. I see him getting the win here, though I highly doubt we’re seeing a Cross Rhodes and three count and a clean win for Cody this time around. Winner: Cody Rhodes
Rhodes has been awesome since February and his feud with Mysterio, bringing back the classic IC title is a nice touch. The IC title means something again… but it’s not for the title, so I see Orton winning and going for the title later. Plus I doubt I’d see the day Orton loses 3 PPV matches in a row! Winner: Randy Orton
I imagine that Cody’s going to put a good fight but eat an RKO at the end. I hope the feud continues, but I don’t see Orton losing at three ppv’s in a row. Winner: Randy Orton
Winner: Randy Orton
Mark Henry vs. Big Show
Big Show made his triumphant return and now is out to get the man who took him out of the competition for awhile. Unfortunately, Big Show started this fight to begin with. I love Big Show, but I’m going with: Winner: Mark Henry
Mark Henry. He’s a steamroller, and I don’t foresee them taking his title away before Royal Rumble 2012. Winner: Mark Henry
Too soon to kill the Monster Heel Which Is Mark Henry’s Character quite yet. Otherwise, it would cheapen Randy’s character. This Big Show/Mark Henry will probably go at least 1, possibly 2 more PPVs. Then Big Show will ‘discover the secret’ of how to beat Mark …or whatever the hell. Winner: Mark Henry
I really don’t see the title going on Big Show at this point, too much work in building Henry up as a monster for him to fail now. I don’t know if it’s going to be a clean ending, as I can see this going through the next pay-per-view. But I think Henry is going to win. Winner: Mark Henry
I’ve never liked or disliked Henry during his career, neither been impressed or depressed by his work… until now. I’ve still not developed any emotion towards him but I think he’s been on top of his game. I reckon he’ll retain his title… with a win. Go to crock Show again and Kane returns to stop him (and feud with him next, hence Sheamus/Christian feud continues). Winner: Mark Henry
Henry retains. Probably not cleanly. I think the Henry/BS feud has been kind of stupid and backwards. Does that count? I hate the WWE’s standard approach to booking feuds like this. Big Show assaults Henry for no reason, but Henry is somehow the “bad guy” for retaliating. They did the same thing with Cena/ADR. Winner: Mark Henry
Winner: No Call
As the match ended with both Mark Henry and Big Show unable to continue I’ve decided to be nice and not include this match in the percentages for predictions. Personally, I enjoyed watching the ring fall even as it was being predicted on twitter.
Alberto Del Rio vs. John Cena
I guessed Cena last time, and was wrong. I want to vote Cena again because are they really going to let him not win the title back two pay-per-views in a row? However, I’m going with they will. They will be in San Antonio Texas hot off their tour of Mexico. Don’t undermine the man with the smile and accent. Winner: Alberto Del Rio.
@SirTweets_a lot Prediction:
ADR, for two reasons. I think WWE is finally realizing that the title changes hands too often. Secondly, Survivor Series is coming up soon And I don’t think Cena is gonna have the title when he teams with The Jabroni-beating, pie-eating People’s Champ, THE ROCK. Winner: Alberto Del Rio
Del RRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRrio. Why? Because I like rolling the R’s. No, lol, because I think it’s too soon to put the belt back on Cena. We all know he’ll be going into WM28 as champ, at least give us *something* different for right now. And Del Rio’s doing a decent job carrying the belt, so there’s no need for him to drop it quite yet. Winner: Alberto Del Rio
I have a hard time not seeing the belt on the line at SS, and they already confirmed Cena/Rock teaming. So ADR keeps the belt. Winner: Alberto Del Rio
This is the hardest to call. I don’t see a way ADR can keep Cena down for 10 clean, don’t see a screw that will keep Cena down for 10. Ricardo Rodriguez does a good job of screwing opponents out of matches but that’s for a close 3, how will that work for 10?
Cena winning also gives WWE the chance to have the WWE title in everything when the Rock shows up. (They made a lot of Miz doing this and the Jackman punch on Ziggler, why not do it bigger than ever before?) However I don’t see why Cena actually needs to be champion (except for that one picture). So I can’t see ADR winning, only a flaky reason for Cena winning… I’ll go for Cena on the basis that they will happily chuck the title around by having that one photo then handing it on to someone else! Winner: John Cena
ADR wins. This is probably the match featuring a run in. Cena can’t be Champion right now, but they’re not going to have him just lose a Last Man Standing Match. Winner: Alberto Del Rio
Winner: Alberto Del Rio
This pay-per-view proved to be much less predictable than the last one. Here’s how predictions went, minus the Mark Henry/Big Show predictions:
Solace – 71%
SirTweets_ALot – 71%
TheSupremeForce – 71%
Paradise_Lost12 – 42%
MarkBilly – 42%
Yawsrko – 28%
So how did you do?
On twitter one of the constant things I see is people saying that the PG rating has ruined everything. To me it sounds like a reason for people to complain because the can not see exactly what they want on their screen.
As I’ve stated before, I have a short-term memory when it comes to wrestling. I may not in everything else, but if it happened over a year and a half ago in wrestling I tend to wash it away. There is no point in dwelling in the past because the present will never be the past. If I do remember it that means it was either epic or it is something I’ve seen repeated within a year.
I will never be that person who says, “The Attitude Era was so much better,” because it’s over. It is time to appreciate what you have in front of you. What has PG really changed that is so bad? Does PG really effect the storylines? Should they not be able to stand on their own without a rating? Sure, some of the stories lately have been bad, but is that a fault of PG or is that a fault of the writers?
PG means less blatant sexual innuendoes. There is still sexual content, Kelly Kelly barely wears anything when she goes out to wrestle and Aksana is pretty much propositioning Teddy Long. Even on NXT Derrick Bateman and Maxine are kissing on a regular basis in which he usually reacts like he could be dragging her to the mat for reasons more fun than wrestling O’Neil for the twelfth time.
PG means less swearing. Steve Austin ends up being bleeped during Wrestlemania and people are a little shocked when Young calls McCool and Layla, “bitches and sluts”. That is a good thing. People should be shocked to hear it, not because the words themselves are as offensive as they once were but so it doesn’t number people to hearing the same thing every week. Having Cena bleeped as he calls people “douche bags” is entertaining enough. The young ones might not know what he said and the older ones can laugh because, “Oh My God did he just say that?”
So what do others think when it comes to the PG era?
Yeah, I think it does make an impact on the quality…by no longer catering and appealing to the lowest common denominator. By this, every time I see someone scream that they “WANT THE ATTITUDE ERA BACK!”, it’s because they’re missing profanity and partial nudity and not the stories. I don’t care -what- they say otherwise. I also find it funny that in the IWC, many who want the Attitude Era back weren’t even *alive* for it the first time around. Or if they were, they were in diapers. Hey, kids..just because you think it looks “cool” on YouTube doesn’t mean it was great the first time around. Sincerely, Somebody Who Was There And Unimpressed. P.S. I don’t think pools of blood are required either. Look at Ric Flair these days. Look at him cross-eyed and he’ll bleed. Besides obvious risks that bleeding/being in contact w/somebody else’s blood has, that health-wise, we’re more educated about nowadays (simply look at the RKO/Taker angle from ’06, I think it was. Cowboy Bob bled on both of them and he carries hepatitis)..there’s no need to blade anymore. Blading has gone the way of 8-track tape players and big, heavy TVs w/tubes. The industry as a whole has evolved. And that’s not a bad thing.
PG or not PG?
It doesn’t make much of a difference. Sure, there’s less blood and less profanity, and divas like Kelly Kelly can’t earn a living as a broom-shaped stripper, but those differences have little to do with the successes and failures of the current product.
Blood is overrated. Seeing it all the time results in becoming desensitized to it. Look at how big of a deal Cody’s recent bloodbath became due solely to it not happening in a long time. That’s the way it should be. I’m not anti-blood exactly, but it means more if it’s saved for big moments (as opposed to the way Flair uses it, ie after a sneeze).
Crude jokes were rarely funny anyway. Rampant homophobia needed to be cut out of the product, especially once the WWE started pretending to give a flying crap about issues like bullying.
Obnoxious diva matches featuring pudding or spanking weren’t really the answer either. Of course, the division really isn’t that much better these days, but at least it’s not constantly degrading toward women (emphasis on constantly).
The WWE has its share of problems, some of them major, but being PG is not one of them. The people running around crying about the injustices of a PG product are either naïve or complete idiots. Didn’t the WWE go PG before the much beloved and constantly overrated “Attitude Era” even ended?
Look at it this way. At least Kelly Kelly isn’t taking off her clothing for the enjoyment of six year olds anymore.
WWE’s PG rating, it’s something that has gotten an awful lot of criticism over the years, and some have made the bold claim that it’s even ruined the WWE product. A lot of people want the Attitude Era back, they want the edginess and that same spark. These however, are likely the same people that condemn any company or performer that does something that has already been done. What made the Attitude Era great was that it was new, it was different and it was giving us something we had never seen before. It was never going to last forever, it had to run its course eventually and when it did, it left the WWE with an aged fan-base, many of which turned away when guys like The Rock and Steve Austin walked away from wrestling for their own reasons. So WWE had to do something to draw in new viewers, and they opted to market themselves to a younger fan base. Now WWE is a company first and foremost, and marketing themselves in that way was a good move, because those kids? They’re hooked on guys like Cena and Orton, and they’re going to stay interested for a long time, and watching wrestling as a kid? It’s hardly as odd as someone older watching pro wrestling, for whatever reason there seems to be this standpoint that you have to outgrow it after awhile. When you look at the crowd though, yes there are several children and families, but it doesn’t mean that they’ve shunned their older fans away. Has the PG rating changed their content? Of course, you look at what was done before the PG rating and now, there’s several things that have changed. Has it changed drastically? I don’t think it has, in fact the difference between PG and PG-14 is all in the wording.
The TV-PG rating may be accompanied by one or more of the following sub-ratings:
D for some suggestive dialogue
L for infrequent coarse language
S for some sexual situations
V for moderate violence
Parents are strongly urged to exercise greater care in monitoring this program and are cautioned against letting children under 14 watch unattended. This rating may be accompanied by any of the following sub-ratings:
D for strong suggestive dialogue
L for strong coarse language
S for intense sexual situations
V for intense violence
Oh, Wikipedia is awesome, took me no time at all to look that up. Now the dialogue has changed, but lets face it we still get our dose of corny innuendo from Cena, it’s just toned down from what a guy like the Rock could get away with. Well lets face it, the Rock can still get away with it. Other than that, has the dialogue really changed that much, that we can say it’s really hurt the business? Especially after CM Punk’s shoot promo a few months back, there may not have been anything suggestive, but it was hardly the kind of rant we’re used to hearing on WWE programming. It’s that reason that I think the PG rating has actually helped the business, because now when something like that happens? It actually means something, it actually comes as a surprise rather than when WWE was trying to push the boundaries every week. Toning down the product lets those kind of moments shine brighter, if Punk’s rant happened in the Attitude Era, it wouldn’t have gotten the response it did, CM Punk wouldn’t have been the hottest thing going in the business last Summer. I think that’s an aspect of things people don’t look at, and they feel as if they should deliver that every week, but WWE simply can’t do that every week. After a couple of months, it would lose that edge, what made it exciting would be gone and you’d be back to craving something different. Tying into dialogue is the second aspect of what makes PG different from PG-14, coarse language. Alright, this I feel makes no major difference in the product overall. We can all tell what word should go where, but they’ve gotta stick to the guidelines, and does it really make a difference? Seriously, what words even get left out? Ron Simmons said “Damn” every week, we hear “Ass” every time Mark Henry comes down to the ring, we get a very clear “Bitch” when Triple H comes to the ring. Yes the last two are in theme songs, but they aren’t exactly hidden, and those words have been used in promos, but I don’t recall promos word for word and couldn’t tell you the last time they were said by a competitor or announcer. So really, what words are we missing from our dialogue? I can think of one or two, but they’re words that I don’t even think saw much, if any, light in the PG-14 days, so once again what have we really lost here? In my opinion not much.
Sexual situations, alright now there is a notable lack of these in the business these days, but does it leave a hollow hole in the product? I don’t think so, in fact it seems as if the on air relationships have really taken a backseat the last year or so, Edge and Vicki being the last one I remember and even then there was a suggestive bit with a wedding planner or something, wasn’t there? Edge also gave us the live sex celebration, WWE was PG when that happened right? I think so, if I remember it, it couldn’t have been that long ago. Then again, Lita was involved and severely lacked clothing, so that might be why the memory has stuck around. Anyway, got sidetracked there for a moment, but no one can deny the lack of sexual situations involved in pro wrestling. They certainly haven’t stayed away from keeping sex appeal in the Diva’s division, I mean if Kelly Kelly wore any less clothing she’d be wrestling naked, you’ve got cleavage left right and center, the Bella’s do their little dance on the stage, there is almost always some form of spanking in a Diva’s match. For the ladies, you have John Morrison, that is your sex appeal, they don’t just play to us. Oh and you have Cody Rhodes, the man is dashing after all. Alright, I’ve managed to name drop Cody Rhodes, I feel accomplished now. Anyway, sexual situations are lacking in WWE these days, but it’s far from being pure, wholesome entertainment in that regard as well. Edge kept it alive for awhile, but lets face it there aren’t really any characters that fit those sorts of actions right now. I also just remembered a little bit of interaction with the Bella’s and Del Rio from a few weeks ago, that was mildly suggestive for a like, a minute long segment. Huh, maybe there is a character after all.
Wait, did I just compare Del Rio to Edge? If I did, I might need to kill myself.
And the final aspect of this is the violence, and perhaps the only one that actually bothers me about the PG Rating. Now, the chair shots to the head ban is part of the Benoit fallout, but it doesn’t mean that I don’t miss them. But the lack of blood? That is thanks to the PG rating, now I don’t think people should bleed every match or anything like that, but at the same time, I always thought blood added to the story of the match. Imagine something like Cena and Umaga’s match without the restriction on blood, Umaga could have looked like more of a monster, Cena’s win would have been more impressive because it would have just been another thing for him to overcome in the end. It takes away from matches at times, I’m really glad they seem to have dropped the idea of stopping the match to patch a person up on the outside. I know they did that once and I wanna say it was a ECW Title match between Christian and Benjamin, and it was stupid, even more-so because it was a ladder match and there was nothing really stopping the guy from going up and just grabbing the title. I think one day, we’re going to reach a point where WWE might be willing to add blood to matches very sparingly, because once again if we’re not seeing it in excess, when it does happen? It’s going to mean something. I’d love to see someone like Henry go out and absolutely destroy someone and leave them a bloody mess in the ring, it would add to his reputation. Then of course we get situations like we did on Smackdown a couple of weeks ago, where they found every camera angle possible to hide the fact Cody Rhodes was bleeding, but made no attempt to hide the stitched up wound and have even used it to fuel his feud with Orton. It’s as if WWE wants to add that element back into their product, but are hesitant in doing so because of the possible backlash from angry parents. Well we’re in a generation where 12 year olds are playing GTA, watching Saw movies and all those other glorious gory films. I don’t think a little bit of blood in your matches is really going to make a huge difference in what people think of your product, now if they can HAVE blood under the PG rating I’m not sure. Orton manages to find ways to bleed now and then and they don’t cut away from that, so perhaps it just can’t be in excessive amounts. Even looking beyond the blood aspect of things, the No-DQ and Last Man Standing matches aren’t what they once were, they aren’t bad by any means, but the range of weapons has certainly changed and there’s a notable lack of your average household items being used these days. I guess they don’t want Little Jimmy cracking Little Jenny with that cookie sheet sitting in the kitchen drawer. Oh and lets not forget the ending to Hell in a Cell, it wasn’t the most violent thing we’ve ever seen, but it got your attention, it made you stop and actually watch because Miz and Truth basically destroyed everyone in sight. They used weapons, it was still PG but I at least, still found it entertaining.
Looking at the four points of what makes PG and PG-14 what they are, the differences are there, they have to be notable to some extent for the rating to change at all. I don’t think it’s bad for business, I actually think what they’ve done is working for them. Does the company have room to grow? Are there things I’d like to see them do differently? Yes and yes. However when I sit down to watch Raw, or a PPV, I don’t expect to be disappointed. In fact, I’d say more often than not I’ve been very happy with what they’ve done recently. WWE is making money off their merchandise, the fan base may not be what they catered to years ago, but it’s making them money. They get to sell a bunch of action figures, various things that lets face it, no adult would buy for themselves. Those people that hate on the PG era, the people that want that spark back need to accept that it’s not coming back. If you watch their product with an open mind, it’s not bad and you can appreciate that while the company has changed the way it works, they’ve found a way to produce a solid product. So no, I don’t think the move to PG has hurt WWE at all. Any time they find themselves suffering in ratings or buy rates, I think it’s their booking, when they reach those points where the main event is just something we’ve seen so many times in the past. Like seriously, do you think people wanted to watch Christian vs Orton five or six times in a row? I like Christian, but even I wanted him out of the title picture by the third match. It’s not what their rating is, it’s what they do with their product within that rating that matters. WWE has proven they can do some very entertaining stuff while keeping PG, they’ve shown a willingness to appeal to everyone and bring back some of that old spark. If you look at their roster, they’ve got people that appeal to older fans, and guys that appeal to younger fans. They try to keep as many people happy as they can, naturally not everyone can be happy with every move they make, but they do what they can. So yes, PG does change the elements of WWE to an extent, but I don’t think it hurts the overall product greatly in the end, and I’m not one of the ones pushing them to go back to PG-14.
I’m not doing a Monday Recap because, well, WWE does that every show. As do many blogs that talk about Raw. I want to focus more on a storyline and discuss where it’s going and why it’s a good, or bad, angle. As well as my take on commentating every show because, let’s face it, that might be my favorite part some nights.
Going in to last night’s Raw I was thinking, “I’m going to talk about this conspiracy theory thing,” and then Triple H and the vote of No Confidence happened.
My first reaction was, “This is pretty boring.” Beth Phoenix announcing, “we are girls,” felt like quite the stretch. She does not want to be one of the princesses and yet she wants special treatment for being a girl. Wade’s speech, while being the most thought-out and holding truth to it, was still filled with hypocrisy. Christian’s actually fit his character, I can not really complain.
As the show was going off the air with cheers in the crowd for Triple H and boos for John Laurinaitis. None of the top faces had made it onto television during that segment though I wonder if the crowds would really have been behind them walking out. In the few live shows I went to in the last month Triple H was the man everyone cheered. No matter who they were behind when it came to wrestlers the crowd went crazy for Triple H every time his music played. As last night’s Raw showed the only time the crowd ever really made enough noise to make a difference last night was when Triple H was being cheered, all alone in the ring.
I hated this spot. I was bored and filled with disgust at what the superstars were telling Triple H.
It was over. Everyone on twitter was wondering what could happen on Smackdown now. Did everyone just quit? Even this morning everyone was still talking about what this could mean for the show.
While others wondered who was behind it all, John Laurinaitis seems like too obvious of a choice, my question was, “Where do they go from here?” Suddenly a segment I loathed turned into something I felt might have actually been brilliant. While Hell in a Cell proved how predictable the WWE writers could be the following Raw ended up giving us something else. We knew that night that Triple H would be voted “No confidence” when they brought up the idea of the vote. Yet it was surprising to watch everyone walk out on him. When JR sat there for the longest time I was actually cheering for JR not to leave like the crowd. I booed when he walked out on Triple H along with them.
Where can this angle go? I have guesses, but there are many guesses instead of just one confident, “I know what they are doing next.” Vince returns, because we knew he could not stay off of television. Stephanie is behind it all because she thought she should be COO not her husband. John Laurinaitis is the most obvious choice and so they might go with it for a swerve because we would think they wouldn’t. Then there is the wondering: are they going to go with something that will really surprise us?
I thought I hated the segment. Now I find myself glad it happened, because at least I’m not sure where my soap opera is going. That’s the way I prefer things. What do you think is going to happen with this angle?
Best commentator lines of the night:
JR: “Randy Orton seems possessed. Bottom Line: Possessed.”
“How do you control the strongest man in the world?” “You don’t?” “How do you control the Viper?” “You can’t!”
JR: “They’re gonna get it on!”
JR: “Guccis! He was wrestling in Guccis!”
And some love for the Jinder/Santino segment:
“Halitosis” “Bippity Boppity Boo” “Yahtzee”
Jinder: “Let’s go.” Santino: “Okay!”
Since I’ve been talking about predictability in the WWE, @TheSupremeForce, @yawsrko and I decided to test our guessing skills.
Christian vs. Sheamus
They do not seem to want to bury Christian entirely and yet they do not want to give him a shot. Sheamus is a powerhouse that is hard to contend with on any level, and did just come off a loss with Cody. Winner: Sheamus
I don’t think it’s going to be clean, which makes it tougher. It’s either going to be Sheamus wins via count out or Christian wins via… cheating. Winner: Sheamus
It’s a Sheamus Thing. Lobsterhead. Christian’s annoying and could wind up dead. OHHH. These words are true. I’ll make you believe…actually I think it’s bc Xtian’s not really in the WHC picture and Facemus needs the win more. Winner: Fa- er, Sheamus
Sin Cara vs. Sin Cara
Sin Cara and his new black mask versus Sin Cara of the old Blue Mask. I’m looking forward to this, and going to be rooting for the black masked Sin Cara, but ultimately it will be the blue masked Sin Cara that wins. If anything, there will be epic finger pointing. Winner: Sin Cara of the blue mask.
I’m going to pick the blue mask Sin Cara. Not because I think he should win but because looking through the card there is a lot of potential for heels to win and this is the one match where the face winning will make sense. Winner: Blue Mask Sin Cara
Let me adjust my lighting for my next prediction. Let me use my best Hogan voice for this prediction for the Mano y Mano match. BOTCHAMANIA RUNNIN WILD BROTHER..and I choose Blue Sin Cara. I choose blue because he’s the good guy and if he gets suspended for drugs again, they can just put the old outfit on the other guy. Winner: Blue Sin Cara
Winner: Sin Cara Azul – as Michael Cole called him
Since the tag match was a “surprise” there were no official predictions for this. However before the match began all three called that it would be Air Boom as the winners over Swagger and Ziggler.
Mark Henry vs. Randy Orton
Mark Henry won at the last one. Cleanly. Their best bet would be keeping the title on him, even if Randy had to lose by disqualification. But since Randy Orton is almost in John Cena country when it comes to needing to be feuding for the title, my prediction is: Winner: Randy Orton.
Mark Henry keeps the title. I don’t know if I see him winning cleanly again, but I see him keeping the title. Winner: Mark Henry
Somebody gonna get his scruff squished, ’cause somebody else got this Monster gimmick. Henry crushed Kane, Big Show..if RKO destroys him….now, then it’ll hurt both of them. Henry bc SuperOrton will have ended the run, and Orton because he’d be little more than Cena Jr. Winner: Mark Henry
Winner: Mark Henry
Impromptu Cody Rhodes versus Job, er, John Morrison. Again, not one on the official predictions but all three of us guessed Cody before the match finished.
Kelly Kelly vs. Beth Phoenix
I want Beth Phoenix to win. I want Beth Phoenix to win. No more roll ups from an inferior wrestler, please! Winner: Clinging to the hope of Beth Phoenix
Beth’s gotta win this one. If she doesn’t it ruins any credibility the angle had. Winner: Beth Phoenix
Has to be Beth. HAS to be. There’s only so much Kelly everybody can take. Just ask CM Punk…But seriously. Kelly looking strong has only made Beth look weaker. One more loss would make the Divas of Doom look like Doofus Divas. Winner: Beth Phoenix
Winner: Beth Phoenix. She had better win after all of that screaming. My head feels like it’s about to split.
John Cena vs. CM Punk vs. Alberto Del Rio
CM Punk is not getting the title back right now. He actually has an angle going on that doesn’t even need to revolve around him having the title. It’s almost foolish to have him with the title. The fight is really John Cena vs. Alberto Del Rio and Del Rio deserves to have the title. But it’s Hell in a Cell. Winner: John Cena retains the title
The tour where they go to Mexico is coming up soon. They have built Del Rio up as a solid contender for the title. Winner: Alberto Del Rio
I’m guessing that the whole car rental thing for Del Rrrrrrrrrio might be finding its way to a budget cut. So he can’t win. While my gut is screaming Cena, and the summer (and Summer of Punk, apparently) is over…let me take Punk. To be, like, rebellious and shit. Or something. Winner: CM Punk
Winner: Alberto Del Rio!!
And then enters The Miz and R-Truth and laid waste to everyone, even the camera guy. However, as Joey Image pointed out on my timeline, “Not one of these guys thought to grab the bolt cutters?” True, but would that have been as fun? Just like R-Truth and The Miz allowing themselves to be arrested so that the wrestlers could not jump them on their way out. Triple H jumps them anyway, though honestly the police would have arrested him as well for assaulting someone already under arrest.
Breakdown for predictions:
TheSupremeForce at 100%
Yawsrko at 85%
Solace at 71%
The two I was wrong on actually made me happy to be wrong. I’m still, and likely always will be, a huge Randy Orton fan but he does not need the title to be popular. I ended up finding that pay-per-view far more interesting than I was assuming it would be going in. Well put together matches and Cole, JR, and Booker worked well off of one another. Cole was a bit more understated, Booker got in his few good lines, and JR stuck to what he does best which is blending with the other voices. Storylines weren’t really furthered to be honest except for the two Sin Caras.