News SmackDown recap & reactions: True artists

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I took a class in college on the Romantic Era of British literature – dope class, by the way. And there’s a quote from the poet William Wordsworth that perfectly describes Daniel Bryan’s mindset on this episode of SmackDown: “Poetry is the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings...Poems to which any value can be attached [come from] a man who being possessed of more than usual organic sensibility...”

What Wordsworth was getting at is that true artistry comes from those who are more aware and more passionate about knowing whatever they want to know. It comes from the ones who experience strong emotions and embrace those feelings. It’s exactly what Bryan is describing when he calls himself “mentally unstable.”

Bryan went on to say that he possesses a passion for wrestling that is basically unmatched. It’s what provides him with an “overflow of powerful feelings.” He’s unstable because these feelings drive him to make choices that some might call irrational. Most would coast on the “Yes Movement” and make millions along the way; however, that doesn’t appeal to Bryan at all.

He’s the true artist, here. And the irony that the artist stable was trying to recruit him is so wonderfully apt. There truly is no better artist than Daniel Bryan.

Bray Wyatt, however? He’s a true artist, as well. He’s lost himself trying to understand his own identity. His personality has splintered and manifested itself in the forms of puppets and a monstrous, unstoppable Fiend – but that’s not the end of his story, either. Wyatt has gone after those who have roused an “overflow of powerful feelings” within him: Finn Balor, Seth Rollins, and now Bryan. He had history with each of these men, but none more so than Bryan.

Bryan betrayed him long ago. Bryan’s Yes Movement crushed Wyatt, and now Wyatt is mockingly using that hand gesture and phrase against him. Whether it turns into Bryan’s own albatross remains to be seen.

All I know is two artists are going to war very soon. You don’t need organic sensibility to realize that this will be awesome.


The NXT invasions continue

The New Day and the Revival had a match on this show that was meant to be for the SmackDown Tag Team Championships. They got a good amount of time during the middle of the show and proved yet again how incredibly talented those two teams are. Pity the Undisputed Era had to go and ruin it.

Actually, they didn’t ruin it whatsoever. The fact that this was a non-finish allowed the two teams to counter each other like crazy without needing to wrap the match up. The Revival got a Shatter Machine off near the end and Kofi Kingston made a diving save to break up the pin, and then the Undisputed Era was there to sully the ending of the match. What monsters!

(Great way to vilify the group. I approve.)

As for the other NXT invasion, it came from Shayna Baszler and the NXT Women’s Survivor Series team. Baszler wanted revenge on Bayley and interrupted Bayley’s scheduled match with Nikki Cross before the two could really even wrestle. I thought that was a really good portrayal of Baszler being a badass.

Sasha Banks got the jump on Baszler, however, and that brought out four of the NXT Survivor Series participants: Rhea Ripley, Dakota Kai, Mia Yim, and Teagan Nox. SmackDown’s team appeared to defend Bayley and Banks, and we got a really nice 8-woman tag match to whet the appetite.

The main takeaway for me? Give me a Banks/Ripley feud as soon as freaking possible. Those two were electric. Aside from that, I really enjoy how everyone hates each other so much in this thing. NXT’s got something to prove, SmackDown’s pissed off that they’re getting run up on every show...that’s all wrestling really needs. A conflict that pisses people off to the point they want to fight.

...If only the next conflict would take the hint.


The Rest

What on earth was that opening segment?
- I mean that literally, by the way; my recording of the show was messed up, so I had to piece the segment together with clips on social media. On one hand, Baron Corbin’s antics are at least a little bit amusing. We have all had jokes about how silly the “Big Dog” moniker is for Reigns, so I get that a heel would have jokes as well.

...But come on, man! We’ve got Survivor Series teams brawling like animals, two main title feuds with serious bad blood...and Corbin toting around some dude in a dog mascot suit and having the audio team put together a high-pitched barking track to Reigns’ music.

Chad Gable and Mustafa Ali def. Robert Roode and Dolph Ziggler – Reigns was out to help the good guys from the bad guys trying to take their spots on the Survivor Series team. Solid match if you could stomach the opening of the show.

Braun Strowman vs. Drew Gulak is a feud I can get behind – Gulak was basically out to troll Strowman over losing to Fury and he had B-Team by his side. Strowman took care of them without too much trouble, but Gulak really comes off well against Strowman. I actually want more of this.

Heavy Machinery def. Local Talent – Sure. Otis did the caterpillar, which was basically the point of this.


Aside from the really disappointing opener, I quite liked this show. Wyatt/Bryan is awesome, and NXT’s invasions were much more effective this week.

Grade: B

We’re above a C, folks! Hallelujah!

Your turn.

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