Survivor Series 2013 is now behind us, and–as usual–there were some bright moments and there were some overwhelmingly head-scratching ones.
We saw the entire cast of an E! show give everyone a nice bathroom break, we saw Rick Ross–I mean Mark Henry–return once again, and to finish things off, we got something that I’m sure everyone was just waiting to see to finish the show.
Now that it’s all said and done, let me take a look at what I liked and what I didn’t like from Sunday’s annual show:
Roman Reigns is the sole survivor: This was fantastically done. While I did predict a win for the face team, the way that this one ended was perfectly set out. In recent weeks, you can begin to hear the fan support for Roman Reigns continue to grow, and deservedly so. He has the look of a breakout superstar but–more importantly–he can work in the ring. You’re beginning to see the effect Reigns’ talents have on the audience, who is quickly flipping him from a heel to a face with their reactions, which always ends for the best in the long-term for the superstar involved. Those series of spears from Reigns are going to be shown on highlight packages for years to come.
Big E. Langston’s first IC title defense: Some may have been bored by it, and the match itself wasn’t all that great, but it was a good way to solidify Langston as a dominant intercontinental champion. Do I like the way they’re portraying Axel recently? No, but it’s also necessary to present Langston as someone that may be keeping this belt for a long time to come. Defeating the former champ one more time was the way to go about that.
John Cena defeats Alberto Del Rio: In ring-wise, this was a solid match from both men involved. Del Rio generally puts on some good work and he did again in this one. However, it was essential that Cena got the win here to keep pushing the validity of the WHC, which is why it was given to him in the first place. While this match was a hit for me, you’ll see that the next time we saw Cena on this night certainly wasn’t.
Punk and Bryan defeat Rowan and Harper: I was a little upset at first with the victory Punk and Bryan got here, but that all changed after the match was over and Bray Wyatt toyed with their heads on the apron. Ultimately, when it comes to the Wyatts, it’s all about getting your hands on Bray in the end and that’s what people are clamoring for. Just because Punk and Bryan were able to overcome the lackeys–who actually looked strong in this one–it’s not over until you take out Bray, which hasn’t been done yet.
Diva’s elimination match: Like I said in the preview, all this was was a glorified ad for ‘Total Divas’ and that’s exactly what it was, even with AJ’s little speech to her team beforehand. Not even Michael Cole was paying attention to this one, as he announced Natty as the sole survivor, when Brie Bella still had yet to be eliminated.
Mark Henry’s return: The initial reaction from the crowd was hot and Mark Henry’s new bald look appears to be a hit with many, but this match fell flat with the audience in attendance and myself after about a minute in. I understand that it’s somewhat difficult to find something meaningful for Henry to do, but it has been done before so it can be done again. Hopefully, this Ryback deal was a one-off.
Big Show vs. Randy Orton: No one expected a five-star effort in this one, but wow was this a terrible match. From the start, you had it in the back of your mind that Orton was walking away with the belt and that happened, albeit with help from the Authority who created enough of a diversion for Orton to hit the RK, and then the punt for the win.
But, as bad as this was, it will not top what happened immediately after, and also my biggest miss of the evening….
John Cena confronts Randy Orton: I can probably talk for hours about what was wrong with this scenario, but I’ll just go with this: These are the wrong two guys to do this with, and this is the wrong time.
Now, as with everything else, I’m going to let this play out before I cast my final judgement, but I don’t like where it appears this is headed. Cena is done with Del Rio, Orton is done with Show–it seems–so now you would think that there will be a unification match set for TLC next month.
I have no problem with unifying the World Title and the WWE Title, actually I’ve been an advocate for it for years, but that is a definitive WrestleMania main even that ends with a clear cut winner with no outside interruptions. It’s not for a December pay-per-view right before Mania season gets off and running in January.
FINAL GRADE: C- and probably one of the more forgettable Survivor Series’ in history.