Craig Wilson and Brian Damage
It’s that time again as we look back at This Week in Wrestling. In this edition, Craig talks about the WWE booking of the cruiserweights and the new WWE 205 Live while Brian shares some of the most interesting pictures and videos he’s stumbled upon this week.
The Curious Case of the Cruiserweights
In case you missed it, this week the WWE announced a new show for their cruiserweight division which will debut on the WWE Network on 29 November.
The show, titled ‘205 Live’, will feature superstars under the weight of 205 pounds and will be recorded after Smackdown finishes on a Tuesday night.
While, as a Network subscriber, I’m pleased that new content it poses some serious questions in regards to the cruiserweight division and the WWE’s booking of it so far.
We were concerned at the prospect of Raw hosting the cruiserweight division for two reasons: 1) Michael Cole announcing it rather than Mauro Ranallo, and 2) concerns over how the Raw creative would book it.
Dealing with the latter first, it has been abundantly clear that the Raw writers have had absolutely no idea what to do with the cruiserweights. Their booking was two-fold: 1) a one-on-one match pitting the cruiserweight champion and a challenger, and 2) a multi-man match featuring some of the other division.
And that was it. No matches to create a number one contender. The Brian Kendrick is the champion at the moment and TJ Perkins is “contractually” obligated to a rematch as the former champion. But what next? Drawing the next challenger’s name out of a hat?
As for commentary, it was clear very early on that Cole wasn’t suited to this division, it missed Ranallo. In the previously mentioned Sunday Sermon, we cited the fact that Corey Graves was on Raw as being something that could recover things. Therefore, it is welcome that Ranallo will pair up with Graves on the new show.
Ultimately, it’s a reason to be cheerful that the WWE aren’t just pulling the plug on things. The WWE will, essentially, be able to cross-promote on Raw and 205 Live. It really has to in order for the division to succeed going forward.
It’s yet another example, along with certain promotions from NXT to the main roster, that being a success on a Network exclusive show isn’t all that’s required to get over on the main roster.
The Cruiserweight Classic (CWC) created a buzz by offering those that watched it a different product. But more importantly, we were carried on a journey throughout the tournament. We started to root for particular guys whilst, at the same time, learning more about some of the hottest cruiserweights plying their trade across the world.
That aspect of character investment was lost and, instead, replaced with a weekly 1 vs. 1 match-up and a six-man tag. The cruiserweights went from the firm focus of a show to a group of guys that the writers lazily found spots for on the show.
205 Live offers a chance to jumpstart the cruiserweights and the superstars that form part of it. It is not the sole solution, however.
Yet I’m still hopeful that it can lead to a welcome boost, already, for the division.
In case you didn’t already know, the heavier-set man with the beard in the middle is none other than Adam ‘Edge’ Copeland.
Years before the debut of Kane…Demolition Smash wore the prototype to Kane’s original mask but in face paint!
In case you didn’t hear, Dixie Carter won the court hearing against Billy Corgan. At least two people on the current TNA roster were not so thrilled with the decision….Mike Bennett and his wife Maria.
A Japanese comic book featuring the Road Warriors…
I wonder, whatever became of this dude?
Interesting name for booze…either that or TNA is a genius in marketing!
I thought this was pretty funny…
Remember when ECW came out with their own line of action figures?
Last Week on the Blog
Last Sunday we previewed Hell in a Cell 2016; on Monday we had part 88 of ‘Wrestling with Sin‘; Neville was on the receiving end of our ‘Book or Cook‘ treatment on Tuesday; we asked ‘Whatever Happened to‘ Charlie Haas on Wednesday; Thursday saw a special ‘The Way We Was‘ looking at WCW Halloween Havoc 1996, and we rounded off the week looking at Raw and Nitro from 20 years ago this week.
Next Week on the Blog
All previous ‘This Week in Wrestling’ pieces can be read here.