Craig Wilson and Brian Damage
It’s Saturday so time for the latest instalment of ’This Week in Wrestling’. Today, in part 25, Craig discusses the Fashion Police while Brian talks about the return of Mauro Ranallo and shares all the best viral content he’s stumbled upon this week.
Even the most ardent of WWE fans will be forced to admit that the last few weeks have, at best, been lacklustre when it comes to the product.
The last couple of PPVs have barely felt like ‘network specials’, let alone PPVs, there hasn’t been any sort of bump from Jinder Mahal winning the title and both Raw and Smackdown have a plodding feel to them. There’s been a whole lot of filler and very little in the way of killer.
There has, however, beem one standout in recent weeks and that is the Fashion Police.
The team of Fandango and Tyler Breeze and their ‘Fashion Files’ skits, have been the most consistently good parts of the Smackdown Live and the WWE generally. In a matter of a few months, a team previously considered jobber and a joke have become an important team all through their hard work and good-humoured skits.
Just over a month ago as we headed into Backlash, and it’s crazy there’s been several events since then (!), with Breezango facing The Usos for the tag titles. As we previewed the show, I wrote the “WWE have taken a comedic act and added layers that have made them even more interesting” but countered by saying “whilst Smackdown Live is the land of opportunity, as is well documented, I am not convinced that stretches as far as having this pair going over the tag team champions.” And I was right.
But a lot has changed since then, the Fashion Files have really, really caught on with fans and the pair have become firm fan favourites with the WWE universe.
It’s fair to say that the Fashion Files have been the making of the two. Funny little skits that have an 80s throwback feel to them and are packed full of wrestling in-jokes have really helped the pair get over and find themselves not feeling out of place alongside teams like the New Day and The Usos.
From offering to hand in their badges, and water pistols, to Shane McMahon to their weekly skits focussing on ‘One Day is H’, the rise of Tyler Breeze and Fandango, and more away from Breezango to the Fashion Police, has been very welcome.
Long may the team continue to bring welcome enjoyment to Smackdown fans every Tuesday night and here’s hoping they get a run with the tag team titles. The pop that would generate will be incredible.
This past week the WWE announced that former Smackdown Live announcer Mauro Ranallo is returning to the company. This time, Ranallo will become the voice of NXT. Some people might consider this a demotion for the uber talented play by play man but, in reality, this is the perfect fit for his skill set. Mauro Ranallo, in my opinion, is the most talented of all the WWE announcers and can tell a story like no other with his calls.
Tom Phillips was serviceable as the play by play man of both Smackdown Live and NXT, but Ranallo is certainly an upgrade. Not only that, he can now be more of himself in NXT, where Triple H truly calls the shots. He will no longer have Vince McMahon or Michael Cole talking in his ear and telling him what to say and what not to say. I believe Hunter will let him just be himself and focus on what’s most important, getting the talent over.
Mauro will now be able to call matches featuring the likes of Hideo Itami, Bobby Roode, Asuka, Drew McIntyre, the Authors of Pain and so many others. His genuine excitement for the product is infectious. While Ranallo denies that JBL bullied him or forced him off Smackdown Live, I have my doubts.
Ultimately though, Ranallo is back where he belongs, calling WRESTLING matches and doing a damn good job of it. The sky’s the limit for NXT and with Mauro behind the mic again, the sky just got a lot higher!
Poll Results from this Week
5-star – 37.5
3-star – 37.5
2-star – 12.5
1-star – 12.5
4-star – 0
1-star – 38.46
3-star – 30.77
2-star – 15.38
5-star – 7.69
4-star – 7.69
4-star – 31.25
3-star – 31.25
5-star – 25
1-star – 12.5
2-star – 0
3-star – 28.57
1-star – 23.81
5-star – 19.05
2-star – 19.05
4-star – 9.52
Money in the Bank 2017
2-star – 33.33
3-star – 22.22
4-star – 18.52
1-star – 14.81
5-star – 11.11
Best match at Money in the Bank 2017
Men’s MITB – 74.19
Jinder vs Randy – 12.9
Usos vs New Day – 6.45
Hype Bros vs The Colons – 3.23
Women’s MITB – 3.23
Noami vs Lana/Ascension vs Fashion Police – 0
Okay, I’ll take your word for it…
Vader sporting his own custom sunglasses. I am not ashamed to say this, they look pretty damn cool!
Dustin (Goldust) Runnels signing an autograph for a young fan. That young fan would become a wrestler herself known as “Emma” in the WWE.
AJ Styles versus Shinsuke Nakamura, Mortal Kombat style!
We all know the huge salaries of wrestlers like Hulk Hogan, Sting, DDP, Keven Nash and Scott Hall etc made while in WCW. What about the bit players though? The jobbers, the enhancement talent, take a look at wrestler Alex Porteau’s WCW paycheck from back in the day.
The John Cena mask that the WWE is selling looks very familiar to me. In fact, it reminds me of the mask that Michael Myers wore in the Halloween horror movies. Let’s see what Michael would look like if he wore a Cena mask…
Congratulations on Triple H’s new endeavor, since the whole NXT experiment didn’t work out.
WWE wrestlers as teenagers in yearbook form!
Speaking of yearbook photos, here’s a pic of a young James Ellsworth.
When time stops but you’re John “F’N” Cena!
Captain Lou Albano doing a commercial for a pharmacy (drug store) in 1988
Last Week on the Blog
Last Sunday we previewed and predicted ‘Money in the Bank’; on Monday we had part 24 of ‘Meanwhile, in WCW‘; on Tuesday we had the return of ‘Book or Cook‘ looking at Luke Harper; on Wednesday we had part 13 of ‘Styles Clash: Clash of the Champions revisited‘; Part 119 of ‘Wrestling with Sin‘ was on Thursday and we rounded off the week with a ‘Whatever Happened to‘ piece asking about Gunner Scott.
Next Week on the Blog
All previous ‘This Week in Wrestling’ pieces can be read here.