- Last week on WWE Main Event, a singles match between Kofi Kingston and Antonio Cesaro turned into a Tag Team Match, with R Truth and Wade Barrett joining their sides. Other than that, nothing else, and the announcement of tonight's randomly thrown together main event between Ryback and Alberto Del Rio.
- Taped on December 11th, in Bridgeport, CT. Michael Cole and The Miz (my nominee for Worst Babyface Ever) are calling all the action. They welcome us in the middle of the ring, and immediately throw it to a hype video featuring Ryback, which turns into a brief recap of what has happened over the past few weeks, setting up a TLC Match at... TLC, between Ryback, Team Hell No, and The Shield.
- Ricardo Rodriguez interrupts, rambling nonsense about having a 17-minute video package highlighting how awesome a person that Alberto Del Rio is. We get about 2-3 minutes worth before Ryback's entrance video interrupts things. That means it's time... for the Main Event!
We return from break with Del Rio coming off the top with another double axehandle for another two count. He goes for the arm, but Ryback counters with a back suplex. He misses ANOTHER charge to the corner (you think he'd stop trying by now). Del Rio with the Sullivan Double Stomp for two. Ryback with more no-selling and another comeback. He connects with a running powerslam, but a Meat Hook set-up is avoided thanks to easy access to the floor. Ryback goes for a suplex, but Del Rio counters with a single-arm DDT. He nails a running enziguri in the corner for a two count. Ryback makes his 87th comeback and hits the Meat Hook clotheslines. The Dookie-Stomp Fisherman-Buster, I mean the "Shell Shock" finishes things off rather easily at 15:49, including two commercial breaks. Pros: Probably Ryback's best singles match, ever. Cons: That's not the greatest compliment. Maybe topping out at 2 1/2 stars, Ryback's no-selling, excess comebacks and repeated spots (misses charge to the corner every time the heel needs to gain control?) really makes for a predictable, mediocre match. On the other hand, he IS improving.
- Matt Striker is backstage to get an interview from Ryback. He reminds me of Will Sasso, dressed as Curly, on 'roids and after being smacked in the face with a shovel for about a half hour or so. Typical interview to hype the TLC Match at PPV Name of Obviousness.
- Hype video for the John Cena/Dolph Ziggler program. They'll be in a Ladder Match for the Money in the Bank Contract, thanks to Vicki Guerrero blindly trying to please Vince McMahon. You know, this angle wouldn't suck if it didn't include A.J. being on T.V. Seriously, get rid of her. I've never wanted to turn Raw off quicker, and I used to sit through those 20-minute Triple H promos from 2002-2003.
We come back, with Mahal working a chinlock spot on Gabriel. Mahal misses a charge, but somehow maintains control. Slater comes in and connects with a jumping heel kick for two. He grabs a front facelock, but Gabriel escapes with an overhead throw. McIntyre cuts off the tag and takes Gabriel over with a snap suplex for a two count. Gabriel with a double dropkick to McIntyre and Mahal, but a tag is interrupted with Kidd being pulled off the apron. Gabriel continues to take a beating until connecting with an enziguri on Slater. Kidd with the hot tag, and comes off the top with a missile dropkick. Basement dropkick for a two count. Slater with a roll up, but Kidd counters and goes for the Sharpshooter. McIntyre breaks it with a kick from behind. Everything gets out of hand, with all five man in the ring at various times. Gabriel with a body press onto a pile of bodies. Kidd with a roll up on Slater, for two. The kick out sends Kidd to the ropes, where he's bitch slapped by McIntyre, and Slater finishes him off with an implant DDT at 12:26 (including a commercial break). Paint by numbers most of the time, but still had some nice, old school fun with the handicap against the good guys and the extra man favoring the heels. They're still undercard jokes, but it's subtle things like a 3-on-2 advantage for the heels and them still needing to cheat to win that warms my cold heart.
- Next week on Main Event: Kane vs. Cody Rhodes. Hopefully Kane won't drop Rhodes on his shoulder wrong this time.
Final Thoughts: Nothing outstanding, but two solid matches, for different reasons, and a lot of hyping for the big matches at TLC makes for an entertaining hour of television. Not a must-see episode, but it's well worth watching instead of the three hour torture that's Monday Night Raw. Don't forget to order TLC on PPV on December 16th, and that Rolling Stones PPV on December 15th. Money goes to WWE either way.