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Undertaker is a Mark

No disrespect to The Undertaker. My title is true. His real actual government name is Mark.

Shoutout to The Nic Johnson for his well thought out piece on The Streak ending, without being a MARK crying “Oh he’s a part-timer”.

Lastly, Mike Killam of Wrestlezone made a great point that I had… and hadn’t thought of.

Cesaro has been over as a face, inexplicably ever since he joined a racist heel group led by Zeb Colter. “We The People” is one of the reasons The Usos tag title reign hasn’t seemed to matter. But… now Cesaro isn’t a Zeb Colter guy… no. He is a Paul Heyman guy. One night after another Paul Heyman guy ended The Streak MANY marks who aren’t Mark Calaway, thought should never be broken. And the Raw after Mania crowd popped hard as FUCK. AFTER the SAME Paul Heyman dropped a pipebomb heel promo about being the strategist who helped end the streak.

Cesaro’s problem his entire career has been that he’s not a mic guy. He’s a solid worker, but… if you have no catchphrases people can give less than a damn about your work. You are Alberto Del Rio, or Kofi Kingston, or Dolph Ziggler… or… Jack Swagger. So they put him with Zeb and let him do all the talking. Then all of a sudden he got over with the “Cesaro Swing”. So now…they put him with another heel manager. I will be shocked if Cesaro doesn’t come out to crickets in arenas around the world. Kinda like how people didn’t care for Del Rio, they turned him face, then people really liked Ricardo Rodriguez… so they turned him back heel and had him beat up Ricardo. *deep sigh*

This may not really be an issue. CM Punk is the first guy to SAY he’s a Paul Heyman guy and he was a face for much of the time since he said it. I’m foggy on this but I believe he’d accompany face Punk to the ring same as he would heel Lesnar. So maybe they’ve just replaced Punk with Cesaro. We’ll see.

I respect Undertaker for being a Brock Lesnar mark. I’ve read countless times over the past few days that he wanted Lesnar to be the guy years ago. I’m just slightly concerned about the ripple effects of that decision. How it will affect Cesaro being a babyface managed by the guy who managed the guy that broke The Streak. How fans will take Lesnar wrestling four or five times a year, only on PPV… and him being used to put guys over in the future. See… that’s what most of us thought The Streak could do. “Beating the guy who broke The Streak” < "Breaking The Streak". I would have picked Roman Reigns, personally. Nigga woulda been made for life.

Speaking of Reigns, I gotta give WWE credit. The Shield is here to stay, for the foreseeable future and the split between them and The Authority is permanent. The Shield are full-on babyfaces now and I liked the way it was done. It almost felt like this was planned and they've stopped rewriting Raw during the show. I may be wrong. WWE is lacking strong faces at the moment. There's Cena, Bryan… maybe Cesaro… and now The Shield.

Big E is kinda just there at the moment. He's my new favorite to be the fourth man in the new Evolution. I think at some point, they're gonna have Orton and Batista actually take the tag belts from the Usos, Big E is the IC champ, and HHH is determined to personally take the WWE WHC from Bryan. I'm here for it. The breakup of the group will be the same as the last time: everyone in the group wants to be champion, and there can only be One. Big E has to be allowed to show personality. He seems so blah to me at the moment. He may need to go back to being a heel behind some bigger heels.

Speaking of heels… one of my major gripes at the moment is that when I watch Raw, I see all the over guys are heels. Cena, Sheamus and Big E got booed heavily against the heel Wyatt Family. I call this 'the nWo effect', which I can broaden into 'the Stone Cold Steve Austin effect'. The nWo was a heel faction that got cheered for ganging up on babyfaces and Hollywood Hogan was the chickenshittiest of chickenshit heels. You will still see nWo shirts on WWE programming. Ziggler wore one last weekend. SCSA was a tweener… a babyface that cursed more than I do, defied authority and overindulged on alcoholic beverages while doing so. Ever since their era, John Cena can't get a true babyface reaction without cutting those vulgar freestyles and tossing bags of nuts at people. I will remind you people, Daniel Bryan got over as a heel. If CM Punk was an afterthought as WWE champ at WM 28, Bryan was the thought AFTER the afterthought, jerking the curtain and losing the WHC in 18 seconds. Try to convince me all of that was done to intentionally get Bryan over so I can bitch slap you.

I've read so many things that have pissed me off in the last half year about "WWE burying Bryan" LAWD. Gotta take my hat off to WWE trolling the IWC. Once they realized Bryan was an actual thing (and CM Punk left like a bitch) they firmly entrenched him in the role of the anti-authority character Punk's character is even more well-suited to playing. Yes, I'm still waiting for HHH to screw him out of the belt again. No, I don't care that you believe Bryan should get a long run as champion. Although… I'd like to see Lesnar versus Bryan at SummerSlam. So the Beast can break The Flying Goat. Just like he broke The Streak.

A brief word on “The Streak” ending…

Like the majority of the wrestling world, I was stunned, bitter and angry about the end of the Undertaker’s Streak. I should clarify, I wasn’t bothered by the Streak ending – it was created to be ended. That’s my entire problem with the ending – the Streak was literally MEANT to be broken, and when it came to be ended, it felt so clumsy, rushed, mishandled.

I spent the whole day thinking through the possible reasoning WWE could have had for ending the Streak. Was it called on the fly, in the ring by Undertaker? Was it known ahead of time? If so, why do you not put it on last knowing the impact it would have on the crowd? If it was going to end – why not play safer than sorry and let Triple H or Punk end it last year?

Fast forward to RAW tonight – when Brock’s music hit it all suddenly made sense to me. There weren’t boo’s, there weren’t cheers, there wasn’t celebration – there was just nothing. THIS is why Brock Lesnar was CHOSEN to end the Streak.

The Streak was built to be broken in order to put over whoever breaks it. To establish them as a powerhouse. The problem is, unless the audience WANTS that person to win, they will forever be doomed to insignificance. They won’t be hated, they won’t be a heel, they will simply be insignificant. They will be deemed as unworthy of having broken the Streak and what more legitimizing act can one do than end the longest running, most heralded Streak in any sport, entertainment otherwise? You will always be the second most significant part of THAT match, much less any other match in your future.

The argument was brought up that a “part timer” ended the Streak, and this just isn’t acceptable. You’re right. It sucks. But doesn’t it ultimately make the most sense? It was clear that the Streak needed to be ended. Whether it was the concussion, neck injury, or just plain old age on his wheels – Taker was a noticeably lesser performer last night than in recent years. It was time for the Streak to end.

WWE was in a lose/lose situation and had to turn it into a win/win…because that’s how you make money and save face in pro wrestling. WWE had no one in line, with Punk out of the picture, that could get the babyface rub of ending the Streak gracefully and earning Taker’s respect. At this point – you need to cut your losses. If you can rule someone basically insignificant (albeit with Paul Heyman, that’s never entirely the case) and end the Streak, send the offending party off for 6 or 8 months before they come back and the wound has healed – why not do it? Enter Brock Lesnar.

GRANTED, in my fantasy booking world – I don’t see why you don’t let Heyman get involved in the finish. If you’re clearly not worried about the sanctity of the Streak and it’s legacy, why do you not at least establish a MEGA HEEL, by building the story around Heyman’s unquenchable thirst for revenge and have him cheat to go over ‘Taker at ‘Mania. Lesnar is safe, the Streak is ended, and you have a long term MEGA HEEL manager. Makes more sense to me.

All being said – I see why WWE did what they did. I don’t like it. I think there were other options if the decision had been made earlier… but if the Streak HAD to be ended this year, you arguably couldn’t have had the curse of ending it fall it any better of a persons lap than Brock Lesnar w/ Paul Heyman at his side. That’s what ending the Streak means, with the rare exception of maybe 3 Superstars…. It’s a curse. A burden you will never be able to shake. A weight you will never come out from under.

EDIT: For what it’s worth, if WWE has any marketing brainpower left… there would be “Brock Lesnar – The One” t-shirts being made hand over fist… at least you gave the man a legit tagline.

Are You Happy Now? (I’m Not.)

I have made no secret that, though I like Daniel Bryan, I do not think he is a TOP guy. Top five, sure. I do not think Bryan is the main event. High midcard, yeah. In the old days, he’d hold the IC title forever but get few shots at Hogan or whoever. But, here we sit today, and Michael Cole said “Daniel Bryan is the face of WWE!” I REALLY want that expression to go away. Enjoy it marks, it won’t last long.

I’ve also gone on record as saying “Daniel Bryan is a guy who’s going to win around 10 world championships… and he might have around a year as champion total with those reigns.” I’d argue Bryan only fought HHH because Punk left, and only won the belt A) because Punk left, and WWE (read: HHH) wanted to send the “this would have been you” message and B) Because Brock Lesnar ended the streak.

Before I get back to talking about how I was wrong but I’m still right about Daniel Bryan, let me talk about how mad I am I was wrong that Lesnar beat Taker. I was laying on my girlfriend’s tit, licking and sucking her pierced nipple when the three count happened. I’ll never forget the stunned silence. My girl asked “What happened?” I sat up, incredulous. Laughing out of sheer amazement. Seeing how so many faces looked exactly like mine. Michael Cole said “The Streak is over” with a mixture of disbelief and surprise. They sold the shit out of that moment, so much so I am prone to believe The Nic Johnson was right last night when he said that Taker made the call to put Lesnar over on the spot. Again. I’ll never forget the last day of just sitting around doing random things then thinking: “Yoooooooo… The Streak is over!”

I’m not mad Brock won as a part-timer. I’ll only be mad if he loses a match in the next year plus and doesn’t get a title reign. Since they let him end the streak, they need to get everything they can out of him before he leaves again. Same for Batista, who I think WILL get the straps soon. Maybe even tonight. The Nic Johnson was peeved that there was no mention of Bryan’s title win on WWE.com. I had to remind him .com is a kayfabe site. The owners of the company and HHH do not want Bryan as champion, and I expect every second of him being champion to be fraught with peril.

I’m surprised Bryan won simply because of how strongly he is booked. Only Cena wins as much, as cleanly as Bryan does. They’re booking Bryan like he’s Stone Cold. I’ve been on record as saying Bryan is no Stone Cold. Only thing they got in common is popularity and the machine raging against them. It wouldn’t surprise me if all of a sudden Bryan starts dropping matches on TV on par with how non-Cena stars are booked. Because part of the reason marks hate Cena… is that Cena so soundly, resoundingly beats their favorite workers. If Bryan is a dominant champion, then that means he’s gonna keep beating Orton and Batista, Cena, Wyatt, Roman Reigns, et al. Marks will start to feel like he’s being forced down our throats.

That’s inevitable in this day and age of wrasslin. You’re lucky if you can hold the belt for a year now and the fans aren’t tired of you. There can be no Hulk Hogan or Bruno Sammartino title reigns now. If Bryan held the belt for 3-8 years his own friends and family would resent his monkey ass. Which is why all his title reigns are going to be short and sweet. Bryan can’t be the sympathetic figure held down by the man if he’s always holding the gold and winning all the time, right?

Which brings me to my last point: How can a man who won two matches in one night with one arm against Evolution… ever be considered an underdog again?

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