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Posted in: Just Business
Just Business: The Preview Side of the Pond – Looking Back at TLC, Looking Forward to Survivor Series
By Samuel 'Plan
Oct 27, 2017 - 6:30:40 PM




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Don’t forget to pick up your copy of my book, 101 WWE Matches To See Before You Die, from the LOP Store or Amazon today! Simply click here to find mine and a host of other books and merchandise on offer, all courtesy of LOP, or on the icon to the left to be taken directly to Amazon!




Just Business: The Preview Side of the Pond – Looking Back at TLC, Looking Forward to Survivor Series


In a couple of hours time, The Right Side of the Pond is going to be hitting the LOPR airwaves once again, and this week we will be taking a look back at last weekend’s pay-per-view – as is tradition!

For those who may have missed it, I delved into great depth on my opinions about the TLC main event from last Sunday in my Performance Art Review of the match earlier in the week, and my co-host this week, Maverick, enjoyed it just as much. We break down our thoughts that much more on this week’s show, and look at why those who enjoyed the bout need not feel apologetic for liking it. In retrospect, admitting it was of a terribly unique nature, it was ultimately, I believe, a fantastic piece of work from all involved.

We don’t stop there, of course, and omitted from my Performance Art Review a few days ago were my thoughts on the rest of the card – perhaps most specifically, the very well received match between Finn Bálor, in Demon form, against Smackdown Live’s (SDL) AJ Styles.

It was a good match, though I don’t feel quite so enamoured as to state anything beyond that. It was perhaps its heavy-handed treatment of its chosen story that prevented me from really falling in love with it. Honestly folks, by the time the two were getting back in the ring at the same time, turning at the same time, hitting cross-bodies at the same time and nailing clotheslines at the same time, I was almost at the point of screaming “I GET IT!” at the television.

There was still plenty to like about it, especially because it was such a last minute thrown together line up. Despite it being so heavy-handed, the story was still an engaging one and the two performed it with the elite artistic precision any one of us should expect. The fatalistic sense of their finally meeting for the first time added a certain intangible that amplified the drama heading in. But it was perhaps it’s restraint that I liked most: it avoided the increasing puroresu influences so much of the roster – including Finn and AJ themselves at times – are guilty of indulging in a little too eagerly and, instead, remained absolutely first and foremost a “WWE style” match. It was with more than just a little relief I exhaled when the first and only Coup de Grace brought matters to a close!

Best yet for many fans is the sense there was still plenty of life left in the pairing. I can’t be the only one who would more than happily accept a straight up rematch between the two at the inter-brand themed Survivor Series in a few weeks…. It’s not like the four hour marathon show would be struggling for time.

TLC 2017 did, though, if in the inverse sense. The segments and resultant match between Elias and Jason Jordan was dull enough to drag the entire pay-per-view down a star rating (if you’re into those!) and was transparently only in place to pad the event out to three hours. Why WWE feel the need is beyond me. Given the otherwise relatively straight forward undercard that over-achieved where expectations were low and met expectations when they were tempered, TLC 2017 would’ve been better with the needless half hour shaved off.

We’ll be touching on various aspects of that undercard on tonight’s show, including the functional and effective Asuka debut opposite Emma. So too will we be turning our attentions to the looming Survivor Series which, much to the delight of Maverick and I, is once again following a theme of inter-brand conflict.

I’ve seen pockets of negativity on this front, and I’m not sure I can sympathise. Just read my column from the other week to know how excited I am feeling now WWE have committed to what was a hugely successful theme for the show in 2016, that left many fans discussing how well suited the Big Four event was to said theme. I like too, and comment on the Pond tonight, how WWE have found a slightly new angle on the inter-brand theme. After last year’s singles matches vied for championship transfers and divisional migrations, I like that this year we get instead something of a gold rush, as champions wrestle champions for little more than the right to boast. There may be minimal stakes involved, but the concept is one I can happily get behind!

So too was the segment that kicked off the escalation of the central feud of the show last Monday night, which injected that fight for bragging rights with some very welcome bitterness. Was it perfect? Of course it wasn’t. That might be largely down to what Maverick and I determine on tonight’s podcast – that after a sterling character showing from an ice cold Shane McMahon revealing his family’s famous cut-throat attitude to warfare, having New Day lead the gang attack turned what should have felt like an uncomfortable and claustrophobic home invasion into a borderline West Side Story style musical. It just didn’t strike the right tone.

Still, the idea underpinning the execution was sound, with The Shield and Sasha Banks in particular being sure to omit the relevant degree of equal parts desperation and outrage in the face of the SDL Siege. Those questioning why individuals feuding with one another would suddenly be on the same side should remember that, as history shows us time and again, the enemy of my enemy is my friend, and that none of these individuals booked these matches to take place; they’re taking place regardless. Thus, Survivor Series has forced upon both rosters marriages of convenience that could yet prove to be a central source of intrigue for the matches to come at the November extravaganza. I find that reason to be excited.

But, as with all these things, I’ll be talking more about that on tonight’s show, set to air shortly on Lords of Pain Radio to kick your weekend off right! The Right Side of the Pond airs only on LOP Radio every Friday night, 9pm BST / 4pm EST, or can be listened to on demand at any time via BlogTalkRadio or on iTunes, so be sure to check it out!

In the meantime, why not share with us some of your general thoughts about the fallout from TLC 2017 and the beginning of the build for Survivor Series, in the comments below or over on social media!



Don’t forget to pick up your copy of my book, 101 WWE Matches To See Before You Die, from the LOP Store or Amazon today! Simply click here to find mine and a host of other books and merchandise on offer, all courtesy of LOP, or on the icon to the left to be taken directly to Amazon!





Click here to add me on Facebook!


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