The Heel Report: 01.31.13: A Numbing Inevitability
This is the Heel Report. A weekly chart spanning from Tuesday’s NXT to the Raw Super Show, ranking the heels in professional wrestling based on their actions, wins and losses.
Each Week there are ten places, with points out of ten awarded based on these positions. These points are then added to a rolling chart that will continue each week to show who is wrestling’s overall top heel.
This is a place where the heels of wrestling can be praised for all the hard work they do trying to get us all to hate them, so without further ado let’s get on with the report…
Weekly Top Ten
1st Place: C.M. Punk
So it’s all over now, and sure it wasn’t the most eventful title reign in WWE history, especially for the time it spanned, but honestly most title reigns these days have little to say for them, especially when the man who is champion is being constantly overshadowed by someone else. Still at least on the night of the Royal Rumble Punk got to go on after Cena, and sure the night ended with him losing his title, but he did so in a grand fashion and technically he has a pinfall victory over the Rock, and that’s more than Cena got so really who is in the better position at this point? After much speculation things went down pretty much how we all expected it would, and things probably won’t change all that much on the road to Wrestlemania. In the end Cena-Rock 2 is more promotable than Punk-Rock 2, in wrestling there is always a guy who could be considered the better wrestler, but is nowhere near as mainstream as his counterpart, but when we as fans look back we will remember the less marketable guy as being the better man, and this will be the case when we look back at this time and think about Cena and Punk, sure most of us already do that now, but give it time and I’m pretty sure that most fans will consider Punk at this point in his career truly ‘The Best in the World’.
2nd Place: The Big Show
Some people seemed far too pissed off about the duct tape finish in the match for the World title on Sunday, honestly I thought it was a little abrupt as the crowd still seemed really into the match but the method itself isn’t so bad, even if it has been done before. Del Rio added the extra psychological edge of damaging Big Show’s arm enough so that he couldn’t get himself free and the match itself had enough innovation, and the use of a light tube for Christ’s sake, to make it a fine showing from all involved. Then if that wasn’t enough the next night on Raw should have silenced all critics considering that Big Show got revenge on Del Rio big time, duct taping the champion to the ropes, destroying his friend in front of him and then toying with the champ until finally putting his lights out with a KO punch, I just hope it doesn’t lead to a ‘duct tape on a pole’ match at Elimination Chamber.
3rd Place: The Shield
Do you believe in the Shield? I believe that they are the luckiest bastards ever since they have now destroyed every major active face in the company and still not had any real comeuppance. On the other hand I do not believe that the WWE has any idea what they are actually doing with the group. After all they have now been in the company for well over two months and they have had a total of one match. Now sure I am glad that the WWE are keeping them strong and haven’t jobbed them out at all, but what is the actual point of them past a plot device at this point? Honestly I was hoping to see them in the Rumble match itself, sure they would have had to lose but they still could have looked great doing it. Also are they actually active superstars yet or are they still considered a renegade force? If that is the case then surely Vince McMahon should be doing something more about it since they are kayfabe fucking up his show every week, more attention to detail please!
4th Place: Dolph Ziggler
The Zig Zag man was indeed the Ironman in the Rumble as everyone predicted, although he didn’t win the thing, which should have been obvious but I think a bunch of us were blinded by hope and faith that the WWE weren’t going to go down the most obvious route possible. Still Ziggler did well in the match and has apparently found himself back in a feud with Chris Jericho, which was a surprise to everyone. I’m not sure how to feel about this one just yet, on the one hand after his feud with Cena he is still in exactly the same position he was as before, but on the other he could have easily fallen far further in said feud so being back where he began can technically be classified as a win when Cena is involved, after all he still has his MitB briefcase. Then again if you were to say that Ziggler could have somehow won the Rumble if he had lost the case to Cena then maybe things did go badly for him after all. I think in the end we’ll have to wait until post-Wrestlemania to see exactly how good of a year Ziggler has had, and much of this will rest on whether he leaves the show with the big gold belt or not.
5th Place: Antonio Cesaro
I think for some reason I was expecting Cesaro to put on more of a show in the Rumble match, but at least he once again successfully defended his title against the Miz on the Pre-show to the PPV. Cesaro continues to win clean or not at all and his feud with the Miz seems to be continuing, I just wonder where he will go from there.
6th Place: The Rhodes Scholars
I am in disbelief after once again this team failed to capture the tag team titles. At this rate the team will disband before winning the belts and will fade into obscurity, robbing the history books of one of the best thrown together tag teams in recent memory. In other news Cody Rhodes went up against his brother at the Rumble and the crowd seemed all for it, why not give the feud a shot this year WWE?
7th Place: Taz
It was a bad week to be a heel in TNA as the Rumble pretty much eclipsed any chance they had to outshine any heel in the WWE, even when they come off a big reveal like Taz did this week. I am definitely happy with the Taz turn though as in general former wrestlers as face announcers really bother me, preaching about fair play when they clearly know the motto of ‘whatever it takes’. As heels they can utilize their in-ring knowledge to put over guys more in my opinion and just generally Taz’s attitude works better as a heel. I especially liked his new found hatred of one Jeff Nero Hardy.
8th Place: Bad Influence
It was a week of heel losses in big title matches and now it really feels like a feud between Hardy and Daniels was blown because of an ill-timed UK tour and stupidity on the part of TNA for not making the proper arrangements for bringing their world champion across the pond for a month of TV tapings! Christopher Daniels deserved this title win and now who knows when he will get another shot, it sucks.
9th Place: Roode & Aries
That’s right I am officially classing these two as a tag team now, prove me wrong! All I hope is that unlike the Rhodes Scholars this appealing heel team can actually capture the tag team titles so that we can have some tag team heel champion antics again since Bad Influence were robbed of the titles at Bound For Glory.
10th Place: Paul Heyman & Brock Lesnar
This is more an acknowledgement of the two rather than a traditional pairing like the one above with Aries and Roode, I just think it was a team effort this week of Heyman being the weasel that he is and Lesnar being the hot head mountain of muscle whose brute strength both saved and cost Heyman at the same time. While the Rock-Cena situation is all but set now there is still some intrigue over the whole Punk, Lesnar, HHH, Undertaker situation and who will be facing who, although yes this will probably still go down with a numbing inevitability, but all we can do is speculate.
1. Alberto Del Rio (281)
2. Robert Roode (276)
3. Daniel Bryan (274)
4. Dolph Ziggler (268)
5. Cody Rhodes (262)
6. The Big Show (240)
7. C.M. Punk (211)
8. The Miz (188)
9. Mark Henry (181)
10. Bully Ray (170)
The Wright View:
The Lumber-Jill Match
I am taking a break from Cena bashing in this segment because honestly it is giving me a headache and although I joked about it last week I really don’t want this to become a weekly ‘Cena Sucks’ segment so I am going to ignore all the negative buzzing in my head over the end of the Royal Rumble and moreover the Fruity Pebbles ‘Tale of the Tape’ that appeared on Raw (which honestly annoys me more, Cena winning the Rumble twice is fine, hell I’m surprised he hasn’t won it every year since he became WWE champion – most likely because he has been champion almost every time the event takes place – but that comparing Cena to Fred Flintstone, I…anyway). So instead let’s focus on the continuing shambles that is the Divas division, and the joke that was the Lumber-Jills match. This was honestly the stupidest thing I have ever seen, and I’m not talking about Kaitlyn’s in-ring work, or the gaudy costumes, no what I am talking about is whoever had the genius idea to have a match that depends on having at least a decent number of people when the division you are drawing from has been abandoned by most everyone in it. Hell they didn’t even get in the NXT divas to bolster the ranks! AJ? Godfather’s Hoes?! Nothing, instead we got six divas (and I’m surprised they could find that many!) so not event two on each side. It is pathetic and why on earth would you think it was a good idea to stage such a match, and then what’s more Cole did his trademark thing of making fun of it and acting like it is boring, why would you do that on your own show?! Putting those women out there for the specific purpose of ridiculing them is disgusting, and it is something that the WWE should be targeted more for, Be a Star for fuck sake!
There was actually a lot of good stuff to comment on this week; Team Hell No, Del Rio as a face champion, Y2J’s return, the debut of the NXT tag team titles. But I’m going to go for something different, it was a Rumble debut and it came from NXT, but it did so in the form of Bo Dallas, who won a spot in the Rumble at the fan axxess for the event and capitalised on his win by managing to eliminate the Intercontinental Champion; Wade Barrett, from the Rumble Match. Now sure this isn’t as big as Maven eliminating the Undertaker, but it comes close, what’s more he then managed to beat the champ on Raw, so by all rights he should get a shot at the IC title in the near future. While I highly doubt that Dallas will actually win the belt that is a hell of a way to come out of nowhere and shoot straight into the WWE picture, it’s almost as impressive as the Shield’s continued presence.
Big E. Again
Slightly slim pickings this week in terms of positive heels that also didn’t appear on the main chart. I’m going with Langston because apart from his sheer size and intimidating nature, every time he opens his mouth something interesting comes out. It might not be clear, and it might be a bit disconcerting, but it is always interesting. This week was no different as he took the mic from Matt Striker and then proceeded to put on a nerdy interviewer voice that just didn’t look right coming out of a man of his size at all. Still this just shows the range and hidden personality that this guy has, I was surprised that he didn’t get a spot in the Rumble match but I suppose that would have been awkward as along with Ryback he would have been a monster that needed to eliminate a good few people to stay looking dominant. Still it was even more of a surprise that he didn’t at least stay out there with Ziggler and have a couple of spots where he caught the Zig Zag man in mid-air and stopped him from being eliminated. Whatever the case I seem to like this guy more and more each week, despite also being critical of how he comes across sometimes, and you should expect him to appear either here or in the Flat-Footed segment for some time to come.
On the flip side of things with Dallas is Wade Barrett, now sure his elimination and loss to Dallas didn’t hurt him too much, he is still the Intercontinental champion after all. But it does take him further away from the World title picture and in many people’s opinion he should have been right in the hunt upon his return to the ring. Instead he has had to jump through a bunch of hoops and this seems to be the latest one, I don’t think it really counts as a barrage if you are going after guys much weaker than you and way lower down on the imaginary standings of ‘who should be in line for a title shot’. I just hope Barrett gets his shot as the year progresses.
Gavin Napier Counts down the best Secondary titles in The Contentious Ten
Joseph Lee lists his worst films by Good Directors in A Bloody Good Time
Jeremy Thomas gives us his top films of 2012 (personally mine was Cabin in the Woods) in The 8-Ball
Nick Marsico keeps us up-to-date in The Tuesday Communique
And the 411 Staff have The Wrestler of the Week
JBL at the Royal Rumble – JBL was a Wrestling God! And now he is a god on commentary, at least when it comes to funny lines and amusing/bemusing observations anyway. This week his gems came from the Team Hell No vs. Rhodes Scholars match for the tag team titles, which he referred to as a ‘Hair Explosion’ (pun intended?). Then he followed that up by comparing Cody Rhodes to a ‘Jacked up Freddie Mercury’ which is just great, and at least his references have moved into the 1980s. Cole asked him to make contemporary references but the point of the moustache is that it is weird because it is not contemporary, otherwise it wouldn’t be so remarkable, so he should just stfu.
That’s all for this week, the Rumble set in motion what we all really knew was already going to take place, and honestly it could have gone worse. After all we are all by now used to having a guy at the head of the company that half the fans can’t stand, for whatever reason. Of course I will always believe that if you replaced Cena tomorrow the same half of the fans that cheered for him would cheer for that guy because they cheer the top face no matter what, but maybe I’m wrong, all I know is that Ryback, Jericho and Sheamus all seemed to be getting an overall more positive reaction in the match…dammit, this whole not complaining about Cena thing is really hard. Anyway the main event for Mania is set and now we just have to hope that C.M. Punk did enough in his 434 days as champion to make sure that he isn’t appearing on Main Event next week rather than Raw. I give him even odds, for now this is James Wright signing off.