Cakes Takes on The Horror Show at WWE Extreme Rules 2020 (Pay Per View Review)
WWE Extreme Rules 2020
The Horror Show at WWE's Extreme Rules 2020
So like most of the WWE PPV’s this year that I’ve watched, I came in on this one late. I missed the preshow, but that was mostly it. Coming in late on these shows, being a longtime fan, doesn’t make me feel as if I miss much. Being a fan for so long, I can almost call out these matches as if I am in them with the superstars now. I did hear that the pre show match was probably one of the best matches on the card actually, so of course I’d somehow find a way to miss that. Overall, the night was short and the matches all seemed off a bit to me in certain ways. The Extreme Rules PPV usually delivers to me, but this one barely felt extreme at all to me.
First match on the card was the Smackdown Tag Team Champions, The New Day (Kofi Kingston and Big E) vs Shinsuke Nakamura and Cesaro for the Smackdown Tag Team Championships in a Tables Match! I was on my way driving home while this match was on, so ever so often I’d hear what sounded like great moves being performed and out of the corner of my eye, I’d see something awesome happen! The New Day are now a staple in the tag team division and are what teams and factions should aspire to be, in the sense of their union as a team together! While Cesaro and Shinsuke are still a rather new team (to me, because I stopped watching RAW and Smackdown weekly) they do work well together and look good together in the ring! I did get a chance to see the ending, which was pretty cool to see Kofi Kingston being put through two stacked tables outside of the ring at the end. Shinsuke and Cesaro are now the new Smackdown Tag Team Champions and I really hope that they do something with that. I’m not a fan of their team yet, but if you’re going to take the titles off of one of the most well groomed tag teams in WWE right now, then you better do something good with it.
Up next, Nikki Cross challenged the Smackdown Women’s Champion, Bayley, for her championship! I understand why WWE does it, but I just wish that so many matches didn’t end screwy or via DQ or anything that’s not a solid win or loss. This match was just the kickoff for that the rest of the night. It was a good match between the pair of them with a lot of running around and help from the outside of the ring, but the ending was still screwy and annoying. Bayley got Sasha Banks’ brass ‘BOSS’ knuckle rings and hit Nikki with it and won the match afterwards, retaining her championship! I still don’t LOVE Bayley as a heel, but I think that she’s a bit better at it now than she was in the first few months of her heel turn. She’s a lot funnier, especially when she’s yelling at the ringside announcer’s table, and she seems a bit more hostile, but I’m still not the biggest fan of her being heel, for her as a person in particular, as it never fits her personality and demeanor to me.
The next match was very similar in terms of screwiness. It was supposed to be a matchup of MVP challenging The United States Champion, Apollo Crews, for his US Title. However, Apollo Crews was out “due to injury” (in actuality, he contracted COVID and can’t compete right now.) MVP knew that Apollo wouldn’t be there on Sunday night, so he came to the ring and declared himself the winner of the match and the new WWE United States Champion, even though he didn’t get the title and there was no referee to officiate over everything. It was just weird and screwy. If I watched weekly like I used to, I’d want to know if MVP’s declaration of his win was going through or not. Is he actually going to be the new US Champ, due to vacancy of the championship? If he does become the new champion, will he take a dive for his client, Bobby Lashley, so that he can be the new champ and compete with the title?! So many questions to an uninteresting feud and another screwed up match for the night!
This match was probably the most talked about match of the night; Rey Mysterio vs Seth Rollins in an Eye for an Eye match! Now leading up to this match, Rey has “lost an eye” to Seth already in their feud, thus why this match was apparently called for. It’s never happened before in WWE that I know of and hopefully never will again. I thought that the stipulation for this match, which was to gouge your opponent’s eye out first, was the DUMBEST thing ever! Like EVER! Who thought of this?! Why was this agreed to!? Find them all and fire them, Vince McMahon style! It’s such an embarrassing idea to me if you really think about it, even for kayfabe reality! I mean, if I got impaled at work, I’m not going to just want to go back to where I got impaled and be put into a situation where I have the same thing happen to me again. This match stipulation didn’t make wrestling sense. This match stipulation did not make logical sense. My only guess is that it’ll lead to Rey Mysterio’s long rumored retirement after his contract ends (because he’s blind now.). This was a really good match, but with a dumb and corny finish! Also, WWE has far more money than to let Rey’s gouged out eye to look like a toy or something. It was so bad! The few good things about it was the match itself was pretty decent work and Seth Rollins threw up a small bit to sell popping Rey’s eye out and seeing it firsthand. (Also, no, casual fans, his eyes are not really gone, stop asking me and sending me that on social media!)
Next, Sasha Banks challenged the Raw Women’s Champion, Asuka, for her championship! This match was great work! GREAT WORK INDEED!!! With another screwy ass finish! It makes me so mad! The entire pay per view was either on one extreme of dumb or the next extreme of screwy the whole night! These ladies work like men sometimes. Their bumps, their moves, and their charisma are all off the charts! This match was a great work to watch, but the ending… The ending of these matches are everything that threw me off about the PPV’s as a whole. Bayley and Kairi Sane were both ringside to help and support their friends, and were going at it from time to time, but finally really got involved at the end. Asuka accidentally green misted the referee and he was down, so with that distraction, Bayley helped Sasha and hit Asuka with a championship belt. With the ref still down, Bayley takes off his official shirt and puts it on herself. She counts to three as Sasha Banks pins Asuka for “the win”. (Not really, but I guess.) Bayley and Sasha run off with all of their championship belts, now having “claimed” them all. THIS was worse than the gouged out eye finish to me! I hate storylines where people steal the belt and run off with it, like it’s theirs, while another person is still being announced as champion. It was like a mix of the Rollins/Mysterio and MVP/Crews match and that’s what bugged me. It took what they did in those matches, and went to the next level with it. So I’m guessing that Asuka is still the champion, but who knows, WWE might actually follow through with this “win”.
Afterwards, Dolph Ziggler challenged Drew McIntyre for his WWE Championship in a match stipulation of his own choosing, which he did not reveal until they got into the ring together! This was a cool way to drag us into the match! Dolph chose a GREAT stipulation as well! His choice was an Extreme Rules match, but only for him. If Drew did anything outside of a regularly sanctioned wrestling match, then he’d lose the title. If he was counted out or DQ’d, he’d lose the title! It was a really good choice and made for an interesting match for the pair of them. When they first got to the ring, I knew that Drew would win no matter what, but Dolph’s stipulation (and the events of the rest of the night) did make me second guess myself once in that match! This was a great bout between the pair, with Drew eventually retaining the championship at the end of it! I am starting to feel like Dolph’s feuds are all the same underlying tone of “This all should’ve been me jealousy”, which I’m sure is punishment from WWE for his complaints over the years about a multitude of things including his character/gimmick, being looked over, and backstage politics. They just made his in-ring gimmick into what they probably felt like he was acting and sounding like to them outside of the ring and on social media. As a whole though, that would be my biggest complaint of the match. The revenge or ‘I made you’ storyline is always a good one, but not when it’s over and over and over again. Dolph has just become a sort of stepping stone for champions to go over as a short lived feud everytime, but he can never seem to hold on to that brass ring himself, although he is one of the best technical wrestlers and talkers in the business, in my opinion.
The main event of the night was the WWE Universal Champion Braun Strowman facing his former mentor and leader, Bray Wyatt in a Wyatt Swamp Fight! The buildup behind this seemed decent, as Bray used to lead Braun in the Wyatt Family and he was the last edition to the group before it finally disbanded entirely and the characters went their separate ways in singles storylines. The match itself made me sick of the cinematic matches. I’m not actually entirely sick of them. I’m just tired of WWE using them at this point, and for no damn reason at all ever. This was not worth the cinematic filming of the match! This could have just been a regular match or an Extreme Rules match and it would’ve left a better impression on me rather than this! The match went so many ways within the short amount of time after Braun arrived on Bray’s swamp. Alexa Bliss plays Sister Abigail to seduce Braun at some point, he almost drowns, he’s kidnapped and chained up, and eventually the Fiend comes out! ANOTHER CLUSTERFUCK! It was just a lot happening and oddly, it REALLY lacked the charm and messages that Bray Wyatt/The Fiend’s first cinematic match against John Cena had. The one real thing that I did enjoy about this match was that it brought back the character of Good Ol’ Uncle Bray Wyatt! (That’s what I used to call him on Twitter when he first got called up to the big leagues) He was always going off about something with a million metaphors that hardly anyone understood and he would just preach and talk for what seemed like hours! I always appreciated that character and his rhetoric and I wish they could’ve done right by him all along so he could’ve kept that gimmick, added the Fiend gimmick as well possibly, and been taken seriously as well, but it’s too late for that and this is what we have. An overused cinematic match with The Fiend coming out as the winner, but we don’t really know what happened to Braun at the end of it all.
As a whole, this pay per view had good wrestling moments, but overall I thought it was kinda crap. It was just a bit too loopy for the sake of being loopy and too many screwed finishes for me to like all of it, or even majority of it. This was a poor PPV and didn’t come off as extreme as it should have to me besides a few times in a few matches. I’m pretty disappointed in it because it could be a really cool show, but it felt very short, most of the matches weren’t great, and they could use the EXTREME part of the title of the show more in each match! I feel like stipulated PPV’s like this one should not have a match on the card that does not utilize every inch of what they have in their arsenal. That’s what makes it seem less extreme. Nobody really got a great battering and left seeming like they were put to the test physically. I really hope the next pay per view turns out to be better because this one was yes a horror story, but not in the way that they thought it would be.