I think WWE and 2015 as a whole are making up for what was a terrible 2014 for not only the WWE, but life in general. Because I think it's been at least since 2008/2009 since a WrestleMania was this good.
Every match, including the Divas tag, delivered.
WWE Undisputed Championship: (c) Brock Lesnar Vs Roman Reigns
I thought this was the weak match of the card as all Lesnar did was supplex city and just kept Roman grounded not allowing the challenger to really showcase his athletic capabilities. The main event should be what the fans are waiting for the most and not reduce it to something as lack-luster as what took place last night. I think Seth Rollins cashing in whilst the match was still going was a surprise because I was not aware that a cash in could be made whilst a match was still going.
either way, that salvaged the match. I like that creative did something different and actually surprised us with that finish.
Now. Whether Roman will look to challenge Seth 'Cartman' Rollins tonight on the post-Mania Raw is another matter. But at least the belt is off a part-timer now and on someone who will defend the belt on more than just every other PPV.
Undertaker Vs Bray Wyatt
The Deadman was in much better shape and appearance this time around as he seemed to have a more mobility compared to how he was this time last year when he lost the streak (again, stupid decision) and he really didn't look to be in the best of health either.
2015's appearance of the Undertaker saw an appearance akin to his return at WrestleMania 20 in 2004, in Madison Square Garden when he returned as a hybrid of the Biker and DeadMan look to take on Kane. He looked healthier and having his hair grown back was a much better look compared to the mow-hawk he had been sporting for the last 3 Manias.
Despite carrying an ankle injury Bray gave a decent performance and made Taker look decent improving on his performance from last year.
WWE United States Championship: (c) Rusev Vs John Cena
Say what you will, but this match was already a foregone conclusion before it started. Cena was going to be made US Champion for the first time in a decade and be the one to deliver Rusev his first decisive loss. It was the rinse-repeat recipe for a Cena match, he took a beating, then pulled out the 5 moves of doom, including a stunner???? WHAT???
And then picked up the win. it was an ok match. Nothing special nor anything familiar than I've seen before from Mr.Cena.
AJ Lee & Paige Vs Bella Twins
The Bellas had the most momentum and dominance in this match despite picking up the loss. I don't know if this was creative's way of trying to get people to take the twins seriously, but for the most part they did seem formidable. I think if they had booked them to win, the fans would have rebelled. I don't think Nikki and Brie will ever be truly accepted by every single fan. For a few reasons:
1: the fans know what they like.
and 2: They don't like people who politic their way behind the scenes. (a certain Hall of Famer in red and yellow knows a thing or 2 about that)
I was pleasantly surprised by how good the match was. AJ & Paige came back all guns blazing after the early dominance from the twins and I was taken aback by how brutal Paige got with Brie by throwing her into the ring-steps. Really good Divas match. did I just say that? I guess Oni thinks TNA's a good show if that kind of logic is coming into play.
Triple H Vs Sting
This was a contender for match of the night. Sting gave a great performance against the 13-time World Champion and it just went back and forth with the fans eating it up with "this is awesome" chants. And they're absolutely right. For the old-school fans who remember being there in the mid 90's when the Monday night wars were in full effect, this was a love letter to them and that Era. With the inclusion of DX and the nWo showing up and adding to the fun at ringside, giving us a taste of what the war could have been like 17 years ago if both companies had allowed the respective factions to war with each other.
Better late than never. Also, Triple H. We need to talk. I appreciate that you have a lot of admiration and respect, but did you really need to pose as the Terminator? Either way, you'll be back.
Randy Orton Vs Seth Rollins
This was almost like a present and past selves of Randy Orton. Both are equally talented technical wrestlers that know how to put on good catchuscatscan wrestling matches.
Considering this is Orton's return PPV match, he needed to get the win badly after what took place before Survivor Series last Fall.
Seth in his singles debut at WrestleMania really impressed me. I may not like the guy's character but I know that he is going to help shape the future of the company for years to come and help the next John Cena & Randy Orton along just as they are doing for him.
Orton was in prime form and he just gets better with each passing year. And it's true what they say; he just seems to pull that rKo outta nowhere. Case in point; the rKo that won him the match as Seth was jumping for a curb-stomp and Randy just leaped up sent him to the canvas.
WWE Intercontinental Championship Ladder Match: (c) Bad News Barrett Vs Daniel Bryan Vs Dean Ambrose Vs R-Truth Vs Dolph Ziggler Vs Stardust Vs Luke Harper
I honestly think that this could have done with being in the middle of the card. That's the only major criticism I have for it. Other than that, I loved this match. It gave me reminders of TLC & Money in the Bank Ladder matches from past Manias and not forgetting the epic encounter between Razor & Michaels from WrestleMania 10.
Everyone played their part and got the crowd into a frenzy and to see Daniel Bryan rewarded for his hard work with rehab and entertaining the audience, he deserved this.
A good opener and set the tone for the night.
Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal
A solid Battle Royal giving some superstars some really much needed TV and Network time which also saw the implosion of Miz and Sandow at last. Per my prediction; Big Show was one of my picks so I'm not disappointed. The guy's going to retire in a few years so it's understandable to let him have this since he has been compared to Andre throughout his whole career.
WWE Tag Team Championship: (c) Cesaro & Tyson Kidd Vs NewDay Vs Usos Vs Los Matadores
This should have been on the actual card and not the pre-show. Pre-show matches are to give some talent some exposure before the main attraction. And example from back in the day when a little thing called Sunday Night Heat was around; would have someone like Matt Hardy Vs Scott Steiner just to get the crowd warmed up.
The calibre of this Tag Title bout was PPV quality and having it relegated to the pre-show not only degrades those Championships that they are trying so hard to bring relevance back to, but the superstars that are competing for them. Talent like Cesaro & Kidd should be on the PPV. Why they were overlooked and kept to the pre-show is anyone's guess. but a fantastic solid match that gave everyone in attendance and at home their money's worth.
My thoughts about this year's WrestleMania in conclusion is I felt like I was actually rewarded for once. After years of below par events since the retirement of Shawn Michaels (let's face it, Manias since then were....meh), the WWE seem to have listened to what the fans have been asking for and gave it to them.
The mid-card belts had importance placed back onto them and had them put back on the card instead of demoting them to the pre-shows like they had done in previous.
Considering that the Intercontinental Championship is meant to be the second most important belt in the company, it comes across as being very contradictive when it's treated like an after-thought when it doesn't get the spotlight time it deserves. Hopefully they will push Bryan heavily for the next big push now that he's won a title that he had never held before.
WrestleMania 31 reminded me of Manias 17 & 18, respectively. The belts meant something this time without making them feel secondary over a real-life feud like the WWE Championship had been used for Mania 29. The focus was more on Cena getting retribution over The Rock when he should have been more concerned with winning the belt back.
Stone Cold Steve Austin said back in the day:
"If you're not in this business to become World Champion, you got no business being here"
And the man is absolutely right.
When the WWE Title's importance was dropped to the second before last match at Mania 28 just to make way for Cena Vs The Rock, which no one asked for nor wanted it absolutely urinates over that belt, CM Punk who held it that year and to everyone else that held it before them. From Hogan, Savage, Undertaker, Rock, Austin to Ric Flair, Triple H and Chris Jericho, the list goes on.
Speaking of Rock and Triple H; while I did enjoy seeing Rock and Ronda Rousey own the Poor man's Corporation, I think that could have been placed on the pre-show and have one of those matches fill that spot on the card.
As pleased as I was to see The Rock return and make the inner-kid fan in me smile to memories of the Attitude Era, I would have preferred it to actually see him face HHH in a match rather than just go another 10 minutes of a verbal slanging match.
Also, I felt like I was watching an extended edition of Monday Night Raw from 2 years ago where HHH was just massaging his ego on a grander scale much to mine and everyone else's chagrin when he could have done this as a condensed video package. But that would be a good idea, right?
Aside from that, this was a much needed return to form for WrestleMania and I would honestly watch this again.
Good night, from the Knight
Another year and another WrestleMania is upon us.
This one of the two times of the year that I am eagerly excited for. A whole year's buildup from when the last WrestleMania ended to the anticipation of this year's showcase of the Immortals.
While I will concede that Mania could be a lot better, via the same token, what other sporting/sports-entertainment event is there to look forward to in the year?
For me, this is my Christmas in spring. I say this, because I feel like I'm a teenager again waiting for my favourites to walk down the ramp and put on a spectacle like no other.
I think back to Manias past with the likes of Shawn Michaels Vs Chris Jericho, Rock Vs Austin II, Undertaker vs Shawn Michaels or Rock Vs Hogan.
WrestleMania has created moments that are still being talked about, because we should. For example: WrestleMania 10: HBK Shawn Michaels Vs Razor Ramon for the Intercontinental Title in a ladder match. That was unbelievably amazing. It also proved that Shawn Michaels was nearly ready for the main event. He should have been there sooner but that's another story.....
I do get the sneaking suspicion that this will be the Undertaker's last dance. As much as I don't want to admit that; it's fact:
Having the streak ended last year not withstanding, which I still think was a dumbass decision (I'm looking at you, Vince!!!) the man had 21 consecutive victories at the biggest event of the year. that is Unprecedented, unheard, PHENOMENAL!
I think Wyatt will help make the Deadman's swansong memorable as that guy just oversells his gimmick, very creepily, I might add *shudders*
As for the main event; Lesnar needs to drop the belt. While he is an amazing athlete, this whole bullshit scenario where he only shows up for every other PPV is not mixing well with me or other fans.
I can understand when people remark saying that the belt is defended too often, I will counter that by adding that it degrades the Undisputed Title and the superstars that are there every single night, busting their asses to get a shot at it, and Lesnar only shows up when he chooses? Uh....NO!
Roman Reigns might not be ready, but at least he'll be there.
I have already made my predictions on the Mania preview of SmackBack from last week but I'll run through them again:
WWE Undisputed Championship: (c) Brock Lesnar Vs Roman Reigns
This is gonna be meh, if I'm being honest. Hopefully better than the snoozefest of Goldberg Vs Lesnar from Mania 20, but that's another story. something X24 Rider knows all too well ;)
Reigns to win, and he'll be made to look strong.
WWE United States Championship: (c) Rusev vs John Cena
Cena will be borrowing HHH's shovel and win. that is all.
WWE Intercontinental Championship Ladder Match: (c) Barrett Vs Ziggler Vs Bryan Vs R-Truth Vs Stardust Vs Dean Ambrose Vs Harper
I can see Bryan winning this. All of them have good momentum to win this, but Bryan has the most. Bryan to win.
Undertaker Vs Wyatt
Taker to win, go 22-1 and retire.
Triple H vs Sting
Sting will be put over. It only makes sense since he's on limited appearances.
Randy Orton Vs Seth Rollins
I can't see the Viper losing this since returning from injury and he needs a decent win to get back into the Title picture. Rollins will job and likely be rewarded with cashing in either later in the night or tomorrow on Raw.
Bella Twins Vs AJ Lee & Paige
AJ & Paige to win. that is all.
Andre the Giant Battle Royal
Big show to win. either him or Sheamus, whose rumoured to be returning tonight.
WWE Tag Team Titles: (c) Kidd & Cesaro Vs Usos Vs Los Matadores vs New Day
I can't see the Champions dropping so soon after winning them. Usos will put up a good fight but will come up short.
Good night, from the Knight
I have tried to be patient in the last few episodes of Sonic Boom, but it just feels like this series is not trying anymore. That and apparently some changes have been made to YT's system that I really don't want to be on the receiving end of. so, I'm pulling After The Boom from this page effective immediately and giving that page to Before the Storm.
With the domain name dynamicknight.com registered, I will be looking to make some upgrades to the site.
Season 2 of SmackBack will have it's Finale after WrestleMania, which means there won't be any SmackDown news for a fortnight. It's a customary/unwritten rule I've carried over from my RDR days. I have to take a break between each season. While this show is much less stressful to Produce, edit and promote, it still requires a lot of work. And since I pride myself on being a somewhat perfectionist I need time to recuperate.
I currently have no plans to host any of old Knight Watch reviews. Not to say I have forgotten where I've come from. Far from it. I am very grateful for the opportunities that commenting on Knight Rider afforded me. But you have to know when to move on and progress, and there's no place for Knight Watch at this time.
Well. Thunderbirds Are Go Premieres next Saturday on ITV 1 in the UK and that will be my primary focus for the foreseeable future.
Good night, from the Knight.
Some 24 years ago on September 26, 1991; BBC began re-showing the original Thunderbirds series after realising there was a nostalgia market for those that missed the iconic puppet series. And in doing so; it introduced the classic Adventures of the Tracy family to a brand new generation. At the age of 10 years young at the time I was bowled over with the amazing special effects for a show that starred marionettes that made it look like these were big budget movies. It was ahead of it's time in the 60's and it held up well into the 90's.
Now, fast forward to today in 2015 and I am as amazed and excited for this new series just as I was for the original.
Here's the trailer that got released today.
Here's what I have to comment on so far; the Thunderbirds themselves blend in brilliantly to their surrounding environments. WETA-Digital have done a masterful job of making the visual effects make the craft very photo-real.
The Tracy Brothers themselves are extremely well rendered and animated. Kinda reminds me of the attention to detail that Gerry Anderson's New Captain Scarlet had a decade ago.
Now whether the characters are motion-captured or just very well animated, that aspect is very impressive so far.
I'm not overtly keen on FAB1 having the ability to fly once more. (I honestly thought we were going to bid farewell to that absurd concept from "that movie".
If that was John Tracy's voice when the line uttered "International Rescue; we have a situation" then so far the vocal talent based upon that little piece is promising.
I couldn't help but notice when the countdown was spoken it sounded VERY similar to Peter Dyneley's portrayal of Jeff Tracy. Either it was his recording or just a very good sound-a-like.
From what I have seen so far a lot of love seems to have been put into this. I enjoyed the feeling of a more tense, suspenseful danger factor. That said, this is 2015 and shows have gotten somewhat darker since the original Thunderbirds and I like the suspense here.
I cannot wait for April 15, 2015.
THUNDERBIRDS ARE GO, AGAIN!
by this time tomorrow we will have seen the feature length trailer for the upcoming Thunderbirds Are Go Series.
Knowing what we have to look forward to in regards to the visual aspects of the series it will be spectacular. But, what I'm now and eagerly keen to see is how the characters will interact with their crafts and their surroundings as one of the first few hybrid model sets/CGI shows.
The only things we will know in regards to the sound of the voice actors will be David Graham reprising his role as Parker 50 years since he first played the man, and of James Bond fame, Rosamund Pyke as the new Lady Penelope, the successor to Sylvia Anderson.
I have actually spoken to Razmus Hardiker through twitter and he has said that:"as a life long Thunderbirds fan, getting the opportunity to play both Alan & Scott Tracy has been my highest honour to date."
That's the thing that also gets me; with the exception of Sandra Dickinson playing Grandma Tracy & David Melkin as Virgil Tracy, the vocal talent are English Voice actors.
But considering how well English actors can put on American accents, this should be interesting to hear. A couple of examples that do this well is Hugh Laurie in House, Christian Bale in the Dark Knight Trilogy and Henry Cavill as Superman/Ka-El/Clark Kent in Man of Steel.
We have been teased since last Christmas of what to expect from the 1st shot of the new Thunderbird 5, to exploring the new Tracy Island and to seeing very brief clips of each Thunderbird.
But tomorrow....the teasing ends.
Thunderbirds Are not Go just yet, but tomorrow.....it's one step closer.
Until next time, Good night, From the Knight.