I don’t talk about wrestling much any more because I don’t watch WWE because it’s….very bad, but I need to catch you up on the last week so bear with me a minute.

A new wrestling company, All Elite Wrestling, debuted on Wednesday. Hoping to kill it in the cradle, WWE immediately signs a deal to have their NXT show airing at the same time on a different channel. NXT isn’t their biggest show, but it’s popular with the younger nerd audience AEW is going for. They announce that the NXT that airs counter to AEW’s first episode will be a special with no commercials for the first thirty minutes, and the whole show is an all-out spectacular featuring two major returns. Officially this has nothing to do with AEW and is just a wacky coincidence that it happens to be on the same day.

Did Cody know he was going to be a good guy when he posed for this photo Jesus Christ how horrifying

Despite this, AEW smashes WWE’s show in the ratings, with nearly twice the overall viewership and triple the key demos. WWE responded with a congratulatory statement

Congratulations to AEW on a successful premiere. The real winners of last night’s head-to-head telecasts of NXT on USA Network and AEW on TNT are the fans, who can expect Wednesday nights to be a competitive and wild ride as this is a marathon, not a one-night sprint.

Taste the salt.

As it happens, on Friday WWE is also debuting Friday Night Smackdown on FOX. Wanting to get a big ratings number and sell out the arena, WWE advertises that this is a special episode of Smackdown that will feature guest appearances by Stone Cold Steve Austin, Sting, and the Undertaker, and then after Smackdown ends there’ll be another hour of wrestling as they tape an episode of their Cruiserweight show 205 live (WWE has….too many TV shows). So people tune in, and people buy tickets, and people show up, and none of that shit happens. There’s no cruiserweights. There’s no Stone Cold. There’s no Undertaker. Sting is backstage but they never send him out. Nothing. What you get instead is WWE Champion Kofi Kingston losing in seven seconds to UFC fighter Brock Lesnar, who then is accosted by UFC fighter Cain Velasquez, because what WWE wants is old UFC guys pretending to fight and then the fans waiting for 205 Live were told to leave. No announcement was made explaining this. Go home.

On Sunday, they have a PPV called Hell in the Cell. Most of the matches that will be on this show are announced half an hour before the show starts because they forgot to come up with them, but the main event people know. The main event will be World Champion Seth Rollins (the main good guy on the show who fans have been souring on a little) vs The Fiend (the top bad guy and the dude fans are getting into more than any dude in a while) in the titular “Hell in a Cell” match, in which the two dudes are locked in a cage and there’s no disqualification and all weapons are allowed.

And, during the match, a bunch of weapons get used, including, but not limited to: A ladder, a chair, a metal toolbox, and a comically large Amy Rose mallet

This was a dangerous google search

The finish of this match is that Seth Rollins hits his finishing move literally ten times in a row, and when that doesn’t work he decided to get a sledgehammer. The referee, seeing Seth with a sledgehammer, tells Seth this isn’t like him, and then Seth hits The Fiend with the sledgehammer, and the ref disqualifies him.

Now, I know what you’re thinking.

  • If the whole gimmick is that you can’t get disqualified, how did Seth get disqualified?
  • If other weapons are allowed, why is the sledgehammer not allowed?
  • Wait, wasn’t one of the weapons that was allowed a big mallet? A big hammer is allowed but not a small one? Are only cartoonish weapons allowed? Did Maximilian Pegasus book this show?

These are all excellent questions, and the crowd was furious, chanting “AEW”, “Restart the match”, and “We want refunds”. They got none of those things, and the show closed to the fans chanting for the competition.

So, the main event of Hell in the Cell made the main hero of the show a cheater who can’t win clean, made the evil demon monster a geek who needed a ref to safe him, and made no goddamn sense on even the generous curve of professional wrestling. So how, when Monday Night Raw happened, did they follow up on this?

They didn’t. Seth Rollins and the Fiend died on the way back to their respective home planets. Despite being the main good guy and bad guy, neither was so much as mentioned, and the opening segment was about one of the three dudes on Raw whose wife is fucking another dude in one of the three unrelated cuck storylines (did a writer have a bad breakup?) and the main event was hyping a boxing match between a wrestler and a celebrity guest to happen in Saudi Arabia.

WWE’s plan to salvage their main event storyline is to simply ignore it and hope we forget about it, because they’ve destroyed their top stars to the point that they’re afraid to put them in front of a crowd.

AEW episode 2 is filming in Boston on Wednesday. I got a ticket, and I expect to enjoy it