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Posted in: In Laiman's Terms
IN LAIMAN'S TERMS #335 - Thoughts on Survivor Series
By Marissa Laiman
Nov 19, 2017 - 11:00:00 PM

Posted by Ris Laiman on Tuesday, May 2, 2017


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IN LAIMAN'S TERMS #335 - Thoughts on Survivor Series - 11-19-17

1. Forgive me for missing the last week. I started a full-time job just in time to also get sick. I completely lost my voice half the week. Naturally it was a week of spectacular television that I picked too, so hopefully this makes up for it. I'm also a few minutes late after reading names live for #TDOR. I tend to keep discussion of such things out of my columns, so that's all I'll say.

2. As I've come back, I'm amazed this is the curtain jerking match. After Crossfit Jesus and Dean were getting the fanciest moves the New Day could come up with, Roman Reigns hit a spear and the ref was nice enough to stop counting before it broke up the pinfall.

3. We get that spot where the match essentially restarts, and MIchael Cole remembers it's the PG Era and uses the word heck. The Shield gets the upper hand, and they set Kofi up for... a super triple powerbomb? They're pulling out the moves for this one, and that gets the win. The Shield get the win, thus breaking the rumor that they would use this match to break them up. Fantastic match from what I saw, and a hot way to get the night started.

4. And we're back with Stephanie and... Alicia who is cosplaying as all the Village People at once, I think. But Stephanie's speaking, so I'm tuning out.

5. Natalya got added to the match? Yay. At least it's not involving her in a heel vs heel champions match? We're going to get the inevitable Tamina/Nia confrontation some point I imagine early in this match.

6. Does it really damage the morale of the team if Alicia Fox is eliminated early? At least Kurt and Shane are actual captains with positions of leadership. Alicia is someone who lost for eight years and then suddenly won a match randomly before going back to losing to Sasha. But oh snap, Becky ends up being the one getting eliminated, so... ::sigh:: Natalya steps in to take over.

7. Listen to that pop for Asuka getting tagged in. She gets as much time as Curt Hawkins articulating his Universal championship pitch before tagging back out.

8. The Descent of Bayley continues , and Sasha acts like she was taken out for her entire career at that exact moment. And there we go with the Nia/Tamina confrontation. The two of them start taking out the members of the other team. Awesome.

9. Nia gets kicked so hard that she steps out of the ring a little more awkwardly. I'm loving this confrontation, especially because Tamina is looking strong for the first time since... I don't ever remember Tamina looking strong.

10. They count Nia Jax out for the 87th time this year, because that's all they can figure out to do with her, and it's now 4-3. I'm guessing Sasha and Asuka will be the last ones standing for RAW after the tables are turned.

11. Alicia gets pinned... I think? But I don't think she was supposed to? Whoops? What just happened? Sasha then suddenly makes Naomi tap to the Bank Statement, and we'll do our best to take Carmella seriously with the rest of these wrestlers.

12. The Network froze, and Carmella somehow survived an Asuka kick. She slaps her, which is probably not the best plan.

13. Sasha takes the worst Ultimate Diva's Finisher of 2011 of all time by getting rolled up, and being completely still until the kickout. Way to show urgency, Sasha. She ends up tapping to Nattie, and Asuka is about to whoop some 2-on-1, I imagine.

14. Asuka was nice enough to match her hair to Natalya's outfit, so an interesting contrast indeed. Asuka wins, and even with it not being much of a surprise, it was still really good. It's only a matter of time before we get Asuka/Alexa.

15. We then get... a massive promotional package for the Network. Fitting; considering that's what we're likely watching this on, but whatever. And that very Network is frozen again just as we're about to see Daniel Bryan and Stephanie, apparently. Oh joy.

16. Still frozen...The spinny circle of death.

17. Paused and hit play, and it unfroze for one second. Now it's frozen again. Again, great timing after that massive promotional package.

18. Great, now the sound is off by a good five seconds. Stephanie bitching about nepotism... Aye... Tuning back out. More commercials. Just what I want in my PPV.

19. I'm guessing this is the match where SDLive gets one back, because they love having the Miz lose. Especially since most of the buildup for this feud has taken place on social media. Better recap that because there were too many promo packages involving Stephanie ruining Kurt's catch phrase to have room for an actual feud.

20. Promos from a car and Twitter. Five-plus hours of programming but that's where we have to have this, which at least looks vastly more interesting than 90 percent of the promos they let on television.

21. This is our first purely heel-v-heel encounter of the evening, and I don't think anyone really knows how to react. Apparently neither do the announcers because even they want you to look on social media instead of the actual show.

22. The fact that Axel has a brand color-specific neck brace may be my favorite thing all night.

23. At least the dynamic makes sense... Each of them working on their own versions of cheap heat.

24. I walked away for a second, and Baron Corbin won. Kay.

25. I'm pretty sure Paul Heyman just did a promo impersonating Goldust and nobody noticed. All it needed was a bite at the end.

26. Two straight heel-v-heel matches, and Sheamus I guess is trying to hide the fact that he uses Elmer's Glue on his mohawk by coloring the ends white. Sure, why not?

27. The Usos doing their impressions of SheaSaro just outdid Curtis Axel's neckbrace as my favorite thing tonight. It's somewhere between Triple H and Dr. Claw.

28. I wish I could say I cared about this match at all, but I don't. This is not an exciting context and I feel like the show has been brought to a screeching halt.

29. Usos win. Smackdown is even.

30. Meanwhile, Jason Jordan backstage gets a moment to remember when he was once doing something other than throwing produce. So glad they broke up Alpha for this. This show started off so well too.

31. Thankfully, this will NOT be another heel vs. heel match. Can you imagine how this card would've gone with four of those? Thanks, Card Subject to Change!

32. Interesting height dynamic here with Charlotte and Alexa. Damn good strategy by using the ropes to her advantage, and Alexa's indifference and apathy for all things good is a much better counter with Charlotte's heartwarming story of actually being allowed to win a match in her home city than... Nattie.

33. This is nearly as jarring as having Emma dominate a portion of the Asuka match. I think it was Tito who pointed out at the most recent Smackdown PPV how all the matches seemed to be booked the same, and that's really the old school mentality of the majority of the match being the cheap heat portion. But in situations like this, it's awkward to say the least.

34. Charlotte locking in that Figure 8 shows some serious damn leverage. Charlotte gets the win which gives Smackdown the lead, so I'm expecting a RAW comeback to end the show.

35. Even though I have ZERO hope for AJ Styles to actually win this match, I'm looking forward to it nonetheless. I'm hoping AJ can pull a good match out of the Bork Laser School of Apathy. That pop alone for AJ speaks to the status he holds. But we better cut to Jinder Mahal. He's rooting for his own brand while staring menacingly at the camera and trying to convince us that he would've made this match as big of a deal.

36. Styles is getting thrown around carelessly. I'm really nervous about this. Brock gives no shits about anyone he's in the ring with, and while Styles may HBK-sell this, it makes me nervous.

37. These don't even look like suplexes. They look like vaguely directed tosses.

38. Good JBL, those legs haven't seen the sun in a while, have they?

39. Styles gets tossed out of the ring hard, and it's like watching an Undertaker match in the last few years: I'm more concerned for his health than I am the match at this point.

40. I've heard a theory that they didn't want to bury Jinder by this match, so they put AJ in to take the heat because it wouldn't damage him. AJ's gotten about one hit in so far. This is not interesting.

41. AJ can't even pull up in the corner to avoid a shot. I'm so glad a guy who wrestles four matches a year is destroying the best weekly performer in the company. AJ finally goes for some strikes, and they of course fail too. Finally, he gets some hits in, and the crowd almost sarcastically cheers. It doesn't last. This has Summerslam/Cena vibes, and I'm not enjoying it.

42. Finally, some strategy, going after the knees and using the quickness to get a moment. Bork then awkwardly catches a springboard, and it looks awful. Then I think AJ goes for a Tornado DDT and it looks even more awkward, because AJ gets driven into his face. What the fuck, this is dangerous.

43. AJ comes off the ropes and AJ gets the full flip in the suplex. That never fails to look impressive.

44. Lesnar's face looks like a black light is shining on it. He is way out of breath.

45. "It's over, Lesnar. I have the high ground."

46. Lesnar can't even bother to catch AJ, and instead just blocks himself. If that isn't symbolic...

47. AJ utlizing everything he can to get leverage and velocity in his attacks is some damn good psychology. I'm glad it wasn't a squash at least, but my hopes haven't risen at all. AJ's doing the best he can with what he was given.

48. AJ nails the 450, and that was almost the biggest upset win in years. Are there only two matches left though? Yeah, Bork's gonna win so the tiebreaker can be the main event. I didn't even think of that.

49. AJ reverses into the Calf Crusher and the crowd is going freaking nuts. Lesnar's actually selling for him. I'm shocked. But then he bounces him off the mat repeatedly which looks devastating. I don't think Braun held out this well in his exhibition waste of time against Lesnar. The crowd is fully into it, and that's remarkable.

50. AJ counters the F5, and hits the Phenomenal Forearm, but Lesnar gets another kickout. This looks familiar. One F5 will end it all, likely. AJ's hang time, damn...

51. This is the best showing against Lesnar since CFJ/Cena from the Rumble a few years back. Another Phenomenal Forearm is countered, one F5 wins again, Lesnar wins. Great showing from AJ despite the result being obvious from a mile away. At least Lesnar finally put someone over in the process, but I'm sick of seeing Lesnar the part-timer going over everyone all the same.

52. Bork walks away tenderly, and if anyone deserves a Voldemort '03 Rumble-like post-match losing-effort crowd ovation, it's AJ. For a minute, I thought Lesnar was gonna go for the douchebag post-attack, and we're gonna go into the final match all tied up.

53. Now for the finale, with late big-name additions that were in no way designed to raise the interest that was lost after they pulled the under siege and then did nothing with it until the go-home week. At least it will give the match some legitimacy in the eyes of casual fans. Let's just hope it doesn't come down to the part-timers. That won't benefit anyone.

54. Finally, Kurt's old entrance and outfit. I've been waiting years to see that again, but it's missing the fireworks. I miss pyro.

55. Sir Braun Clegane and his jaw that opens several inches wider than any other human's should, and finally we'll get Triple H himself, who is back in the wrestling fold for... reasons.

56. We've got Attitude Era vs. OVW Class of 2002 in terms of the past-their-primers. Triple H and Angle on one side, Cena and Orton on the other. I'm really hoping to see the newer guys put over here. Like with Asuka, that was doing it right.

57. Triple H isn't wearing the brand. That's odd. It's also odd that at least two people in this match aren't even specifically on the brand, because they can seemingly change shows at will.

58. Cena's wearing... green? Could anything more accurately illustrate that he had nothing to do with this match? At least Triple H wore the right color.

59. Braun refusing to move despite anything is hysterical, and then Shane makes the terrible decision to attack him from behind. Triple H laughs about it, and who wouldn't laugh about your brother-in-law embarrassing himself.

60. Ugh, Saxton used the word "gutty." I was hoping that went away a few years ago when I first heard it. I hate everything.

61. I like the feel of the All-Star game unique matchup here. At least before interleague play.

62. Oh listen to that pop for Shinsuke asking to be tagged in to square off with Finn Balor. The commentators talk about their history in Japan, and Saxton again has to be the doofus who's like "duh we no in Japan, this is Survivor Series." Graves does his best "shut the fuck up, Tina" response veiled in sarcasm because we of course forgot that wrestling doesn't exist outside of this company.

63. This square off is awesome. Triple H, the head of NXT, now stepping in with the biggest most recent name to come out of NXT. Shinsuke summons his chi from his crotch. Come on, Triple H, how do you not respond to that with a crotch chop?

64. This match and everyone squaring off in it feels like a big deal. This is brilliant storytelling.

65. Bobby Roode wants a shot now. I imagine Hunter sees a version of his early career in the guy. Somehow he's not smart enough to see the punch right in the fuck coming while summoning the power of his gloriosity.

66. Triple H gets the better of two young stars in a row. Finally, a crotch chop where it made sense. They trade spinebusters, and this crowd is on freaking fire.

67. Captain Angle is in to dweeb up the day! And immediately, multiple German suplexes. At least they look controlled rather than throwing a body around with reckless abandon.

68. Provoking Braun Strowman seems like a really bad idea. Nakamura gets eliminated, because fuck you, that's why. Roode starts getting a decent showing against him. Roode tries for some kind of move, and another younger star gets eliminated. JBLdammit, this is gonna come down to the part-timers, isn't it?

69. Joe gets pissed at Braun, and the egos are gonna start colliding. Someone must be saying some really bad words. Then Triple H and Angle get into it, and who can blame him? He's only the latest who has to look powerless and sad in the face of his wife.

70. After some chaos, Braun stares down both Orton and Cena. They say that it's two Hall of Famers having their first encounter with the Monster Among Men, because I guess we're just gonna ignore that we blew that moment by having Cena/Strowman on a random RAW episode for no reason.

71. Strowman takes on the headliners of the OVW Class of 2002 by himself, and mostly being the first person in 15 years to do so. It backfires, and the entire team including the eliminated ones combine to throw him through the announce table. That'll never work, it's not a garbage truck!

72. How is the ref not counting anyone out here? They did it for Nia Jax.

73. Shane's gonna do his idiot dive but Joe comes up to grab him instead. Shane somehow gets out of the Coquina Clutch, and now we have Samoa Joe and John Cena, the brand rival battle we all wanted to see in 2006. It's still surreal as hell.

74. Balor and Joe start griping again. Gee, it's almost like putting two guys who have been feuding on the same team was a really bad idea or something. Cena ends up eliminating Joe, and I honestly can't remember the last time an AA pinned someone. Another weekly star eliminated. What's the point of having a match like this if we're not putting over the actual wrestlers on the shows that are feuding?

75. Angle and Cena now. Well-documented history there.

76. Braun Strowman has been out for a count of 807, but not eliminated.

77. Cena's eliminated now, so at least one part-timer isn't a survivor.

78. Orton hits the RKO on Balor. JBLdammit. The only two regular wrestlers left are Orton and Strowman. Shane, Angle, and Triple H are still in though. Kay.

79. Triple H gets thrown into Angle, and those two collide again.

80. KO and Sami take their vengeance going after Shane, but Shane the non-wrestler can overcome a tag team. KO gets RKOd, and somehow Braun Strowman is still in this match. Remember how you could be counted out, as they reminded us specifically in the women's match? Braun's been taking a nap on the outside, but consistency, what's that?

81. Shane's the last one standing against Kurt, Braun, and Triple H. This would be a good time to unleash some of those Under Siege tactics.

82. Shane's not being counted out either, while they debate the rules about whether or not he can have a chair.

83. Triple H tags himself in after a long staredown. Triple H swerve to get Angle removed? Old-time jealousy? It can't come down to this after such a build.

84. Now there have been two tags after a bunch of staring, because Angle tagged himself in. Shane gets a bunch of quick moves against the former wrestling machine.

85. There's the Ankle Lock after two torn shirts. After a lot of fun in the beginning, this has been a bit of a drag.

86. Triple H then pulls Angle off of him and Pedigrees him. The dissent was obvious earlier, and he puts Shane over him for the cover. He then stares down Braun Strowman. I'm confused. So are the commentators.

87. Braun keeps staring at Triple H. Braun's done a lot of staring. Triple H stands by Shane. Either he's going to turn on him and go for the fall himself, letting Braun come in to break it up, or... No. There goes Triple H pinning Shane. Triple H is a sole survivor. Triple H is a sole survivor. Smackdown got fucking BURIED here. Their non-wrestler manager outlasted the actual wrestlers on their team, and the second half of the match was mostly staring and confusion. What a promising main event ruined by bullshit.

88. Triple H raises Braun's arm while Braun continues to stare at him. Braun finally shakes his head, so he did something other than stare. Braun FINALLY does something, and goozles him to yell. Braun/HHH the next feud, I guess. Triple H tries to Pedigree him, but gets the running slam for it. I can't wait to hear the promo work for this one. I'm predicting a Stephanie attempt at the roar?

89. The "one more time" chant gets its encore.

90. There were great moments in this show. There were patches of the show that were not great. The two opening matches were fantastic. After a slow start, AJ/Brock picked it up. The first part of the main event was good. Then it went to absolute shit. Smackdown was utterly destroyed, and outside of Strowman, anyone who had something to gain from a strong showing in this match was kicked out early. Triple H gets the pin for a show he wasn't even on until last week. After building a lot of interest in the card, they did jack all with it, giving us an incredibly slow second half of a main event with mostly part-timers and non-wrestlers. Yes, Braun came out strong at the end, but who else did that help? What does Smackdown do now except look like the B-show they claimed it to be? I have mixed feelings about this show overall, but Brock Lesnar's immortal reign continues, Triple H gets the win in the main event over Shane McMahon in 2017... I don't know.


I'm gonna give it to the Usos for their Bar voices.

2012 - Daniel Bryan
2013 - Paul Heyman
2016 - Chris Jericho
1-2-17 - Kevin Owens
1-3-17 - Jack Gallagher
1-9-17 - Shawn Michaels
1-10-17 - Dean Ambrose
1-16-17 - Sami Zayn
1-17-17 - John Cena
1-23-17 - Xavier Woods
1-24-17 - James Ellsworth
1-30-17 - Mick Foley
1-31-17 - Daniel Bryan
2-6-17 - Goldberg
2-7-17 - Daniel Bryan
2-13-17 - Chris Jericho
2-14-17 - Alexa Bliss
2-20-17 - Lana
2-21-17 - Maryse
2-27-17 - Mick Foley
2-28-17 - Bray Wyatt
3-13-17 - Paul Heyman
3-14-17 - AJ Styles
3-20-17 - Austin Aries
3-21-17 - Mizcena
3-27-17 - Big Cass
3-28-17 - Mizcena/Mizbryan/John Cena
4-1-17 - Bobby Roode's dueling pianists
4-2-17 - The Undertaker
4-3-17 - Chris Jericho
4-4-17 - Shinsuke Nakamura
4-10-17 - Braun Strowman
4-11-17 - Shinsuke Nakamura
4-17-17 - Samoa Joe
4-18-17 - Nobody
4-24-17 - Alexa Bliss
4-25-17 - Dolph Ziggler
5-8-17 - The Miz
5-9-17 - The Usos
5-15-17 - Titus O'Neill
5-16-17 - Fandango/Tyler Breeze
5-22-17 - Bray Wyatt
5-29-17 - Alexa Bliss/Ohai Bayley
5-30-17 - Fashion Files
6-5-17 - The Miz
6-26-17 - Paul Heyman
6-27-17 - The Ascension
7-3-17 - TROOF
7-10-17 - Paul Heyman
7-17-17 - Crossfit Jesus
7-18-17 - Randy Orton
7-24-17 - Kurt Angle
7-25-17- Chris Jericho
7-31-17 - Bray Wyatt
8-7-17 - Paul Heyman
8-8-17 - Arn Anderson
8-14-17 - Big Cass
8-15-17 - Breezango
8-28-17 - John Cena
9-4-17 - Braun Strowman
9-11-17 - The Miz
9-18-17 - Neville
9-19-17 - Dolph Ziggler
9-24-17 - Paul Heyman
9-25-17 - Alexa Bliss
9-26-17 - Dolph Ziggler
10-2-17 - The Miz
10-3-17 - Rusev
10-9-17 - Finn Balor
10-10-17 - The Usos
10-16-17 - Curtis Axel
10-22-17 - Kurt Angle
10-23-17 - Drew Gulak
10-30-17 - The Miz
10-31-17 - Kofi Kingston/Rusev/Becky Lynch
11-6-17 - New Day
11-7-17 - New Day
11-19-17 - The Usos

Marissa Laiman, In Laiman’s Terms, and Inciting Incident are owned by It’s a Shameful Thing, Lobsterhead, LLC. Copyright 2016. All rights reserved.

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