Recap: WWE NXT (March 6th, 2014)

NXT moved over a day so my recaps have done the same.  I don’t have the Network and I don’t watch NXT live.  There are plenty of ways to watch it without the Network if you’re sly, which I am.  A promo video highlights the NXT special last week, NXT Arrival, which was actually impressively put together. I will give WWE that. So the question is do we go back to sloppy NXT episodes tonight or is the increased quality and production value here to stay?

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Well one thing has at least changed much to the relief of many – Adrian Neville defeated Bo Dallas to win the NXT Championship and end the Horri-Bo reign of terror.  The NXT intro from last week remains.  I don’t mind. It’s not a terrible reboot of the intro.  And it’s not that stupid douche-rap that WWE primarily uses for everything.  Some weird music opens up the show and it takes me a second to realize Neville got a new entrance theme.  The new NXT champion is already in action tonight.  I assume this is a non-title match so it can’t be the rematch with Bo Dallas already.

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Neville’s opponent tonight is Camacho who was face for about five minutes on NXT while the team of he and Hunico feuded with the Ascension.  However, since Hunico has gone on to become “The Real Sin Cara” (again), Camacho is now forced into the dreaded “enhancement talent” (nice words for “jobbing”) here tonight.  It’s a shame because Camacho really isn’t all that terrible but as he’s in his mid-30s and stuck on NXT while everyone else has been jumped ahead of him, it’s not looking very good here and they are not going to make the newly-crowned champion look weak. One short match & red arrow later Neville is the winner.  Regal tries to say this is huge because Camacho is a “serious competitor.”  …yeah, who hasn’t been on the main roster TV in over a year despite the fact he is technically a main roster guy.  Renee Young interviews Neville about his thoughts on defeating Bo Dallas.  Neville mentions he’s been doing this for 10 years and been fortunate to do what he loves and that it was the most amazing night of his life to win the title last week.  He says the NXT championship is validation and a message to everyone that anything is possible.  He says he’s not the biggest guy, he looks like an elf, he’s from a town nobody ever heard of and he has a heavy accent where it’s hard to understand what he’s even saying (even for him) but he says you can question how he talks and how he looks but you can never question his abilities in the ring.  He also says on top of all else it means NO MORE BO which means…

IT IS BO TIME.  Dallas makes his way to the ring much to the dismay of the planet earth and he is not smiling.  Bo Dallas congratulates Adrian Neville for doing what nobody else could do which is defeating Bo Dallas.  Bo Dallas now says Neville didn’t pin Bo Dallas – he climbed a ladder like a dad cleaning out his gutters and he hopes that Neville took a lot of photos with the belt because Dallas will be cashing in his rematch clause and winning the title back for his BOLIEVERS (all six of them).  Bo then makes his leave with his entrance music playing once agian so ONE MORE TIME...

You have to admit he has a dope entrance theme.

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Backstage last week Renee Young (because apparently we only have one interviewer in the WWE and on earth) interviewed Emma regarding her inability to capture the NXT Women’s title from Paige last week (in another impressive match by the way).  Emma puts over how tough Paige is and that she’s earned Emma’s respect but Emma knows one day she will be a champion.  This is interrupted when Ric Flair drunkenly stumbles onto the scene.

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With breath that smells like vodka, Jack Daniels and divorce court, Flair drunkenly asks Emma who she is to decide who is going to get a title in the WWE.  I’m also relatively sure next Ric is going to ask her if he can sodomize her while Arn watches.  Ric says that Emma and Paige have to accept the next champion around here is going to be his daughter Charlotte. 

It’s now Charlotte’s turn to show up and say that Emma must be devastated after losing to Paige.  Charlotte asks Emma to call her if she needs a shoulder to cry on or a girl’s lunch.  I bet Ric Flair has been using Charlotte to lure unsuspecting chicks to the Flair home to ride his Viagra-fueled Space Mountain since she was in high school – maybe middle school. Emma just stares and smiles and does not respond which angers Charlotte because Emma doesn’t seem to be listening. 

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Emma looks totally stoned while Ric probably wonders in the background if Emma’s vagina tastes like vegemite.  Emma threatens to strike Charlotte with her dancing moves and Flair acts like Charlotte won that exchange.  Emma and Charlotte will take each other on tonight.

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OH LOOK ITS RENEE YOUNG FOR THE THIRD TIME IN 15 MINUTES.  Goddamn, enough with Renee Young, already!  She’s overexposed like Anthony Weiner with 6 cellphones.  People on Twitter kiss Renee Young’s ass so much that it’s actually off-putting.  She’s not bad at what she does but she shouldn’t be plastered everywhere because it just looks like the reason she is put in the spots she is in is because she’s taking a lot of penis by somebody in charge.  Renee isn’t terrible but she’s nothing special.  She’s adequate both in looks and in presence.  I think the worst part is when she’s in the booth the commentary team has a tendency to ignore what’s going on to crack stupid jokes and corny pick-up lines at Renee which fuels the easily impressionable wrestling fans watching this (most of you on Twitter) that this is the type of behavior you should have when speaking not even to 10/10s but 5/10s.  In other words this represents everything wrong with EVERYONE.  And it annoys me.

I love the way the crowd reacts to Emma on NXT – it’s a huge difference in presence than what they do for her on RAW and Smackdown.  There is no doubt she’s talented and interesting to watch. 

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As she does her ring entrance I wonder if she should botch it on television intentionally like she did the first times on NXT so that people will chant YOU F—KED UP at her and end up inadvertently watching her just to see if she can do it without making a fool of herself like they do on NXT.  Maybe it’ll work.  It’s part of how she won these people over. 

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Charlotte also has new music, and maybe the entire BFF faction should use the theme.  Summer Rae is noticeably absent but it might be better for Summer to be phased out of this group entirely seeing as Summer Rae is already on the main roster whereas Charlotte and Sasha Banks are going to be here a while honing their craft.  Charlotte also seems to have taken her estrogen pills today and her “David Flair” is only at 34% down from its usual 78%.  Sasha and Charlotte have brought Summer’s Head on a Stick to the ringside area with them.  For some reason I can’t help but thinking Ned Stark being decapitated on Game of Thrones.

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Yes, I just made a Game of Thrones reference in an NXT recap.  I’ve been waiting to do that all my life.  The crowd is fully behind Emma as Renee tells us Charlotte is the “Dirtiest Diva in the Game.”  Rather than think of wrestling rules that just makes me think that Charlotte doesn’t wash her ass before taking anal.  Young tries to say that Charlotte is riding her father’s coat-tails and in a moment of amazing clarity Byron Saxton and William Regal both completely disagree with her!  In previous weeks Renee Young could tell you the sky was red, a woman’s vagina has aliens living in it, and JFK is still alive and the commentators would agree. 

This is a breakthrough for these men:  Renee Young isn’t always right.  Commentators go strangely quiet as these two roll around on the mat.  Emma restrains Charlotte on the mat with a wrist lock.  Charlotte overpowers Emma eventually when she is back up with a knee to the midsection and a whip to the turnbuckle.  Emma kicks Charlotte in the face and rushes to roll her up out of the corner but only gets a two-count.  Charlotte leap-frogs over Emma but lands harshly and tweaks the ankle.  Sasha feigns concern too.  I’m sure Charlotte is faking it.  As Emma turns to face Sasha she gets hit with the snapmare by Charlotte who steals a victory.  I like it.  Push Charlotte as a cheater with no integrity or scruples and stop trying to push her based on creepy carnival freak flexibility.  It’s a better presentation.

Emma stars in "I Can't Believe I Took The Whole Thing #17" with Bill DeMott and the NXT Strength Trainer.

Emma stars in "I Can't Believe I Took The Whole Thing #17" with Bill DeMott and the NXT Strength Trainer.

Emma looks on at the BFFs depressed like she found out she was missing a Crocodile Dundee marathon during this match.  Meanwhile it’s time to go onto some new business.

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Wow, how is Yoshi Tatsu still around?  Yoshi Tatsu is taking on Corey “Dire AIDS” Graves who also has a new entrance.  It looks like most of NXT got new entrances to save the time and trouble of re-doing it all later if they ever get called to the main roster.  I do like it though as NXT needed higher production. 

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However, it’s Graves and there really isn’t much you can do with him because he’s not that good.  Then again he is a skinny white boy with an attitude problem and too many tattoos and there is now a massive vacancy in that department in the WWE so I guess Graves can be the place-holder for all those sad horny women who want to nail dirty scummy guys that look like CM Punk or that show their buttholes to Hunter Moore on Twitter.  Actually, I’m onto something there – they should give Corey Graves the Hunter Moore gimmick where he spies on women to try to see their buttholes, make them write STAY DOWN on their asses in tribute to him and does a lot of drugs.  I’m going to pitch that one to the Jerry Aldini guy from WWE that calls into Asked with Riv and Landin every week and see if he can make that a reality for us. 

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Graves is working on his presentation, and the overall “doesn’t give a damn” character and I’ll give Graves credit where it is due because he is working on his character as opposed to just sitting there thinking that what he was doing before was effective.  If this guy works on his psychology more and focuses less on having STAY DOWN tattooed on his knuckles he might actually get somewhere.  Graves gets on the microphone and says he has something he needs to get off his chest.  He reintroduces himself for the audience who may not have watched NXT prior to getting the Network which is very smart.  You can’t just throw Graves on the show and go “oh here is Graves” because people who have never bothered with NXT before are sitting there going “who the f--- is Graves?”  Graves voices grievance over not being invited to compete on NXT Arrival and being forced to fight someone like Yoshi Tatsu who still thinks he can ever be a Superstar.  Graves says more importantly Sami Zayn bothers him because it’s all he’s gotten to hear about yet Sami Zayn hasn’t won a match in a long time and Graves doesn’t like the idea that all you need is heart to get chance after chance against a guy you can’t even beat like Cesaro.  Graves says he only needs one shot and one chance and he would beat Cesaro but instead he’s fighting Yoshi Tatsu who hasn’t been relevant at all so he just wants to get this over with.  

Graves acts like he is about to lock up with Yoshi then slides out of the ring and say “on second thought, forget this.”  Graves would rather take a count-out loss than fight Yoshi Tatsu who he feels is beneath him.  Ysohi Tatsu comes outside and Graves clotheslines the crap out of him and tosses him into the stares while the count restarts.  Graves is now trying to get a cheap victory without ever having to really lock up with Yoshi Tatsu.  He picks up the countout victory and begins wailing on Yoshi Tatsu after the match.  I like this change in his character.  Sami Zayn rushes down to make the save and Graves makes a retreat. 

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It’s Zayn’s turn to speak and says that if Graves wanted an opportunity all he needed to do was ask and Sami Zayn is ready for Graves tonight if he’s ready.  We are told that the “Other Female Interviewer” Devin Taylor attended something called “The Adam Rose Party.”  This sounds like some Eyes Wide Shut weird creepy thing that involves too much latex, bondage, spankings and whips.

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Sami Callihan (now known as Solomon Crowe) is here DJing this party.  I’m sure not one WWE fan will stop to say “wait a minute, that’s Zema Ion’s TNA gimmick.”  Oh well, I’d rather Callihan be that than to portray a “computer network hacker” which I don’t think would work long term for the guy. 

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There are a bunch of NXT people dressed in silly costumes while weird music and rave lighting goes off.  I feel like this is even worse than a latex bondage party.  Or I feel like this is a scene from Robocop 2 and Robocop is supposed to bust in any minute, shoot seven people and ask where Cain and the synthetic drug known as NUKE is located.

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Is that the Berserker?

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Behold Leo Kruger who went from one kind of creepy to another.  He was more along the lines of “have intercourse with your dog” and kidnap your children creepy before.  Now he’s Adam Rose, a guy who would probably put roofies in your drinks and film you having a ten midget orgy.  While I liked the Leo Kruger character at least the NXT brass picked a good time to change him over.  Most of the people watching NXT now didn’t bother to watch it on Hulu or download it from foreign countries and so they’re not likely to go “oh that guy was still Leo Kruger three weeks ago.”  Adam Rose also speaks completely differently with an entire different voice and accent than he did as Kruger.  Very nice attention to detail here.

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He turns our attention to the former Samuray Del Sol, now known as Kalisto, spinning a baton.  Due to the quick flashes and the darkness you almost mistake him for Sin Cara, actually.  He talks about how he’s finally coming but then cuts the interview short because Devin Taylor is “being boring” and this is a party.  I’m not sure if Rose is supposed to be a face or a heel but since models hang out with crazy drug-indulging weirdoes at strange rave parties with funny lights they would be missing out if they didn’t pair him and Tyler Breeze together, not just as a tag team but as homosexual life partners.  Devin Taylor closes the interview with “I’m Devin Taylor… CHOO CHOO!”  That probably means every male at this party is goung to run a train on her.

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Apparently Adam Rose is debuting here and now and followed by a train of party-goers.  He crowd-surfs on top of all the other NXT talent that has yet to be given a gimmick of debut in any way. 

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I feel like among them could be Frank WWE Clown, Bobby WWE Tux Guy, Paul WWE Dress Guy and Franklin WWE Pajamas Guy.   His entourage retreats to the backstage area to prevent everything he does being a glorified lumberjack match. 

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I didn’t even realize Adam Rose’s opponent “the San Antonio Cowboy” Wesley Blake was already in the ring.  I bet this guy is offended he didn't get invited to the Adam Rose party.  I mean he's a cowboy so he would fit right in with the Mexicans with glow sticks, Berserkers, cat women, and other assorted freaks.  I get a case of the Braden Walkers just looking at this Blake loser, though, so maybe that's why nobody invited him.  Again, the guy with no entrance and no fanfare is going to get squashed.  Usually I would chastise NXT for going to that well multiple times in the same episode but since they are re-debuting the cast of characters here I can understand it.  Regal has been randomly replaced in the booth with Tensai which is a shame – nothing against Tensai but I feel like Regal would have more to say about this Adam Rose character.  Rose wrestles a more laid back “party-goer” theme with his move-set and again I have to give Rose credit for making this new character a 100% contrast from Leo Kruger.  I don’t really dig a standard clothesline being the finisher for Adam Rose.  This works when you’re the size of JBL or Luke Harper.  For Adam Rose?  Not so much.  Maybe it was just this match finish and it won’t be his legitimate finisher though.  The party goers return as Rose leaves.  This feels like it is very John Morrison-esque as well in some ways.  I don’t think it’s a terrible gimmick change.  It’s different.

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Zayn vs. Graves will in fact happen tonight and it will be our main event.  William Regal is back for the main event of the show.  Graves starts off very aggressively working on Zayn.  Constant barrage of offense and a cover by Graves but Zayn kicks out.  Graves uses his billion tattoos to uplink into the moveset of other tattooed wrestlers and goes into full “resthold Randy” mode as a result.  Zayn turns things around and lets off some offensive and is about to dive to the outside but Graves retreats quickly to regroup.  Commercial break happens and when we come back Zayn is still in control until Graves reverses the flow of the match with a backbreaker.  Graves sizes up Zayn who is in the corner only to get an elbow to the face with Zayn follows up with a kick to stun Graves followed by a cross-body.  Zayn rushes Graves and ends up getting chopped on the side of the head.  Graves goes for his Lucky 13 leg submission but Sami kicks Graves off him and hits the Blue Thunder Bomb.  Another cover only gets a two.  Sami goes for a tornado DDT in the finish of the match – Graves catches and goes for the backbreaker again but Zayn rolls through and pins Corey Graves for the victory.  Not a bad showing for NXT and a good way to close out a solid episode that continues the reintroduction of the show and its characters.