Hello again, Internet. After a short break from our regularly scheduled NXT action, I'm officially back and reading to jump right into this weeks show. With last week's tease of HHH making a huge announcement on this episode, I'm left wondering just how much of an impact this big announcement will have on NXT.
Let's find out together!
This episode kicks off with the best (and worst) parts of the show. Brad Maddox is standing backstage admiring himself in his IPhone when TYLER BREEZE demands his time. After spending a moment mesmerized by his own gorgeousness, Tyler tells Brad that he has an idea. Brad states that Tyler doesn't have an idea, and Tyler counters that he does. Before he can get the idea out, however, the always irritating CJ Parker steps into the frame. CJ says that there's turmoil going down "tag team" style and that moon child needs to be part of it. Tyler and CJ begin arguing about who belongs in the unnamed tag team something or other when Maddox interrupts. Brad reminds CJ and Tyler that neither of them have tag partners. Brad then makes the awful and downright uggo decision to put CJ and Tyler together in a tag team match. Which is starting RIGHT NOW.
Match 1: Enzo Amore and Colin Cassidy vs CJ Parker and Tyler Breeze Tag Team Turmoil match
Never was there anyone in NXT capable of making me roll my eyes harder than CJ Parker. Since you kind folks on the internet can't see what I can at the moment, allow me to explain what CJ is doing that annoys me so much. He's being himself. In this match, he's outclassed by the popular Amore and Cassidy. Tyler Breeze also got a healthy and vocal reception, which makes me EXTREMELY HAPPY because Tyler Breeze is going places.
CJ Parker came out to boos and "You can't wrestle" chants. This isn't the type of indifference a crowd feels when someone new debuts, but this is a loud and vocal GO AWAY type of reaction. I happen to agree with the audience. CJ is going nowhere fast. No matter how many times he's repackaged and re-wrapped, he's still awful. If CJ hopes to make it in the business, he HAS to step things up and make himself a tad more interesting than he currently is. His character can be fun like Tyler Breeze is, but he is majorly flubbing it.
I'm also experiencing some dueling feelings here. I want Tyler Breeze to do well and eventually get a shot at some kind of wrestling championship. And on the other hand, I want CJ Parker to be buried in an unmarked grave somewhere never to be heard from again. And then on my third hand, I'm falling harder and harder for Enzo Amore each week. The thought of Enzo and Colin being tag team champions makes me happier than anything wrestling related has in a long time.
But dreams are dreams, feelings are feelings, and match results are as concrete as...concrete.
Enzo Amore makes a quick tag out to Colin while CJ mocks his tag team partner, and Colin puts away Parker in a way that makes me smile.
Move of the match: Colin's sidewalk slam to CJ Parker.
Winners: Enzo Amore and Colin Cassidy
Match 2: Enzo Amore and Colin Cassidy vs Alexander Rusev and Scott Dawson Tag Team Turmoil match
If there's one thing I can take away from this match it's that Alexander Rusev is a big nasty man. And I don't just mean his physical presence while wrestling either. He's no Brock Lesnar, but he's got power and he's one of the scarier big men that I've seen as a rookie considering his raw talent. He's begging to be molded into something greater than this roaring lion that he currently is.
Sadly, one big man can't combat the small package, which is what Enzo caught Alexander in to finish this match. Not much action here due to the turmoil rules and lack of time, but there's nothing here that stands out in my mind as horrible enough to skip, especially considering who Enzo and Colin will face next.
Move of the match: Enzo Amore's small package to Alexander Rusev
Winners: Enzo Amore and Colin Cassidy
Match 3: Enzo Amore and Colin Cassidy vs (Skyrim's own) The Ascension (Conor O'Brian and Rick Victor) Deciding match of the Tag Team Turmoil tournament Winners become #1 Contenders to the NXT Tag Team Championship
I won't lie to you loyal readers. This particular match result (along with the future tag team championship match results) got spoiled for me a few weeks ago. I try my best to avoid spoilers related to this show because I like to go in fresh with my opinions, but what's coming for The Ascension is absolutely delicious.
That being said, I knew who won before this match started, and that completely changes the landscape of this match for me. It's no longer so much about if Enzo and Colin can survive, but it's more about just how badly The Ascension end up beating them in the end.
Was that beating definitive? Yes. Did the spoilers come true? Yes. But I will not spoil the future shows. We'll all find out who wins the NXT Tag Team Championship in due time.
Move of the match: N/A
Winners: The Ascension
Match 4: Bayley vs Sasha Banks (w/Summer Rae) Something evil has taken hold of Sasha Banks, folks. Gone is the smiling Boston girl and replacing that familiar face is "The Boss", also called one of the mean girls by Renee Young (!!!!) who joins the commentary table for this Divas match.
But back to Sasha. No longer is this the happy Sasha that we've all come to know. Sasha is more aggressive and extremely mean to Bayley, who only wants hugs and to be friends. This is a good test of the newly bad Sasha's heel capabilities, and I think she delivers here. Sure, she could use some work on facial expressions and acting overall, but Sasha does enough to get the crowd behind Bayley and that's good enough for me.
In the end, hugs and niceness can't get Bayley past Sasha and those brutal slaps. Sasha beats Bayley and Summer wants the microphone!
Move of the match: Bayley grabs the top turnbuckle and tried to wrap herself around a charging Sasha, but Sasha grabs her legs, moving back, and plants Bayley face first on the mat
Winner: Sasha Banks
Post match shenanigans saw Summer grab Bayley's headband and break it, and with Sasha by her side, Summer announces that Fandango will be at NXT next week. She then proclaims that her and Sasha took out Paige and Emma and they'll do the same to anybody unlucky enough to stand in their way.
And then EMMA! She runs out and chases Sasha and Summer to the back. EMMA'S BACK! With Fandango coming to NXT next week, I can only wonder if Emma will be there to spoil the dance party. They don't call it the EMMALution for nothing!
Match 5: Aiden English vs Bull Dempsey
I can decide pretty quickly if I like certain wrestlers. It may take awhile for some wrestlers to grow on me, but otherwise, the effect is immediate. I knew within 3 seconds of spying Tyler Breeze's boots for the first time that I liked him. And after hearing a few notes from WWE's resident drama king Aiden English, he is super high on my list of NXT favorites. Not only can the man sing, but he can wrestle too. SWOON.
For the sake of clarity, here's a short list of my favorite wrestlers. A conceited male model (Breeze), a dancer (Fandango), and now Aiden, who sings. But don't worry, I like Daniel Bryan and Sami Zayn, so that balances everything else out pretty nicely.
Aiden definitely finishes Bull quickly, and heeding the crowds wishes, gives us an encore of his beautiful music. Oh, Aiden.
Move of the match: The first act. That's not an actual first act, but it's Aiden's show stopping and match finishing final maneuver.
Winner: Aiden English
Meanwhile, backstage: Renee Young catches up to Summer Rae backstage, and before Renee can take a breath, Summer tells Renee that if Emma thinks that she's going to lay down and be embarrassed like she was earlier, Emma better think again. Summer says that any physicality will happen on Summer's terms, and that next week, Summer wants Emma to pick a male partner so things can get PHYSICAL.
Summer dismisses Renee, and that little backstage promo is THE reason why I love women's NXT action. No bafflingly stupid match results like AJ Lee getting pinned in a few seconds in a completely useless women's match. Just flat out awesome ladies wrestling where everything makes sense and nothing makes me cry angrily into a pillow.
Match 6: El Local vs Sami Zayn
You guys, I like Sami Zayn. And no, that's not just his Twitter handle. I really like him. Sami has to be one of the fastest and agile wrestlers I've seen in quite awhile. Which I'm sure is because he wrestled for the Indies for a long time before he ever hit the big time (WWE). Sami makes wrestling look way easier than it should. He flies from move to move and hits corner kicks in the speed that it takes me to raise my cereal spoon to my mouth. He really is championship material. Not just in NXT, but World Heavyweight or WWE championship. Sami's match with El Local (Ricardo Rodriguez???) proves that he should be NXT Champion.
Sami's in line for great things, and with momentum like his, he's the guy to watch out for because he'll be on boxes of Fruity Pebbles in 5 years. Book it.
Move of the match: Sami Zayn delivers a violent boot to El Local in the corner and BOOM goes the ring bell!
Winner: Sami Zayn
Post match shenanigans saw Bo Dallas come out after Sami beat El Local, and in the moment that Bo and his hair hit my screen, I realized something that's taken me a long time to come to terms with.
I'm a BOliever.
You see, at first I thought Bo and his character were lame and forced. But between the time I started watching NXT to the dazzling "Everybody loves Bo!!" promo from a few weeks ago, I found myself wanting to see more of him. I find Bo to be far more entertaining than CJ Parker, and I think he plays the delusional champion quite well. Does that necessarily translate into a future for him? It's difficult to say at this point. I do think he might need some in ring polishing in the big leagues before that can be determined, but the important thing is that I CAN'T STOP BOLIEVING.
In any event, Bo tells Sami that it's good that he's been taking tips from him, his mentor. But while Bo is out, he says he has a few announcements. The first is that he finally healed after he was injured by Sami at Summerslam Access. Bo says that since he's finally healed, it's time to put the NXT title on the line. Bo goes on to announce the Bo Dallas invitational. If you can pin Bo, you earn a shot at the NXT title.
Sami interrupts Bo and says he's signing up for the invitational, and that they should wrestle RIGHT. NOW. Bo scolds Sami for not showing respect to the champ and interrupting him while he's talking. With that in mind, Bo announces that all wrestlers are welcome to participate in the Bo Dallas invitational next week.....everyone except Sami Zayn. That does NOT go over well with the crowd, but it does make me giggle a little. Bo is such an unbelievable little shit.
Yup, still a BOLiever.
Meanwhile, backstage: Brad Maddox is on the phone and in the middle of telling the person on the other line that HHH will be here shortly, when in walks Kassius Ohno. Ohno asks Brad what took so long for him to be acknowledged. Brad says last he checked, Ohno was attacked by the Wyatt Family and out on IR. Ohno says he's been cleared for awhile now, so there has to be some other explanation for him being totally ignored. Maddox says that he's a straight shooter, so he'll tell Ohno the ugly truth. Ohno is a D+ player. C- at best. Ohno tells Brad that the D+ player has the power to go out and interrupt everything on Raw and NXT. Maddox says he personally likes Ohno and that the "higher powers" like to keep him out of action for the fun of it. Ohno promises to do something fun himself by punching Maddox in the face. Maddox proposes something better than punching him. A chance at revenge against The Wyatt Family. Because Brad thinks revenge is what's best for business. Ohno agrees and walks out.
Meanwhile, onstage: The King of Kings and COO of WWE, Triple H, is paying a visit to NXT to make an announcement. Triple H starts off by welcoming the crowd to NXT. He says that NXT is our show. HHH says that whenever he comes here, he's always amazed by the talent that comes to perform for them. He goes on to reference the numerous problems HHH has faced with the Rhodes Family (Cody, Dustin and Dusty), and mentions the GM of NXT, Dusty, has been a particular pain in his side.
HHH says that due to the emotional and distracting business that he has with the Rhodes Family, he's doing what's best of business. Effective immediately, Dusty Rhodes has been given time off from his duties as NXT GM. He says that he does not want the problems in the Rhodes Family to distract Dusty and cause him to make bad choices.
With Dusty out of the picture for the time being, HHH introduces the new interim GM of NXT.
JBL takes the mike and reminds us why he was such an entertaining wrestler in his own right. JBL tells the RUDE crowd chanting behind him that "This isn't sing along with the wrestling god. Shut your mouth", and from there I vanish into a JBL induced coma of joy. The smart ass, rich guy prick is back and he's in charge of the future of WWE.
This is what it's like when world collide.
And that's that. Another show in the books. NXT seemed to be in a transitional period of introducing new stars to TV, but now we're right back to the familiar faces we all know and love. This was a jam packed show full of wrestling, talking and all the things that make NXT the WWE's best kept secret. I truly can't stand just how much I love this show.
In any event, if my review has you wanting to watch NXT every week, all you have to do is go to Hulu! Every episode from this year and many years before is there and ready for you to watch. This week's show is right here. But trust me when I say that one is not enough. One viewing of this show will leave you hooked. Don't say I didn't warn you.
Until next week, everyone.