Royal Rumble Rambles: Full Review
Hey there! Did you watch the Royal Rumble? The preshow? ‘Rent Live’? Well, that’s cool too, because I love you like you love wrestling. Warning: there’s a lot of purple in this PPV. Aggressive purple.
A few pre-show notes: Samoa Joe continues to be the only guy in the Dubya who can pull off mauve-lavender-purple, R-Truth and #Carmella are a gift we don’t deserve, and Beth Phoenix has the hair of a goddess. Also, John Bradshaw decided comparing AJ (Styles not Lee, I’d be so much more excited for Lee!) and Shawn Michaels, which just reminded me of how much more I love Shawn Michaels.
Watch the pre-show if you can: there are so many delightful live promos to offset the commercial packages as well as the RAW Men’s tag, Smackdown US, and 205Live championship matches. Also one of the best cameraman fails ever.
That’s not even counting Hour 2. Shawn Michaels came to chitchat and remind me exactly how much I dig HBK. The US Title change was good with a nice cover for Lana, should she not be in the Rumble for whatever reason definitely not injury or being in a family way surely not whyever would we think that…. 205 Live put on one of the most exciting matches I’ve seen. So watch it if you can, it’s not time wasted.
And then it was time for the real deal, the Royal Rumble PPV! The basics of the various championship matches and the two Rumbles were laid out in a commercial package, and they really are prettier packages than even the last PPV. Package. I definitely wrote that bit when Finn Balor was on screen. Get ready for a review full of that energy, and take it out into the world! Here we go!
First off, the Rumble’s in a baseball field, and it looks great. Then the most important match of the night went off, and the whole crowd decided the world was ending. Becky Lynch v. Asuka began with Becks, The Man, coming to the ring with maybe the best fishnets in the game. Asuka’s new robe made my inner otaku from 1996 cry with joy. I also might have cried with joy. Was that a new mask? It was new to me, so sure.
Shoutout to the announce crews whose tables are at high risk tonight, the Spanish and Germans!I love how #BeckyLynch has a bit of Japanese language proficiency, and Asuka adores yelling at her in Japanese! She rolls her ‘R’s’ like a 1970’s yakuza actor and I’m here for it! The ladies were colourful and the match felt like late Winter fighting early Summer for dominance. It started and continued to be brutal and they just kept going. There were three tech problems during the entrances and match: Becky’s music blipped out of the TV feed, there was a 5-or-so second whine of two mics being too close to each other, and a blackout hit for about a second.
These little problems, however, didn’t take away from what I can only say was one of the most beautiful expressions of the sport of Professional Wrestling. Becky tapped to #Asuka, who applied a guillotine choke into a bridge that looked so painful I held my breath!
Paige and The Rock’s movie trailer showed. I’m about it, all the way!
If someone had told me a year ago I’d love The Miz and everything he stood for, I’d have told them to hit the bricks. Now, I’d die for him, Maryse, and their human larva. That has nothing to do with the presence of Shane McMahon, because Shane just makes me shake my head and hold the bridge of my nose. The Bar, whom Shane and the Miz were challenging for their titles, were purple. I’ve seen my share of kilts, but I’ve never seen kilts so aggressively purple. In fact, there should be a scale for that. 0-10 on a scale of purple aggression! These guys make a clear model for a full 10. How is Shane McMahon still alive? How many times will we see him jump off of high places? How am I continuing to ask these things?
I should write more about this match but after Becky v Asuka I needed an emotional break. It was that intense. Shane trying to keep his jersey in place while he’s being tossed about isn’t intense. We have new tag champs in both show rosters, and I feel like getting up and grabbing a snack during either match wouldn’t have been a bad call.
The #SashaBanks Cricket Wireless commercial ran next, and that means it’s time to remind everyone that Cricket Wireless is owned by AT&T. Make of that what you will.
Renee Young was rockin’ silver sequins, and Corey Graves was slightly less aggressively purple than the Bar. Maybe he’d be a 6 of 10 on the scale.
Ronda Rousey v Sasha Banks rolled around next, and her level of purple aggression was a 7 of 10. Rousey showed no purple. They both showed some serious gold fabric though. Ronda’s eye makeup looked, before the match even started, to be like an orange blossom: beautiful, delicate, and fated to be ruined within seconds. And while it WAS ruined, the match was very strong and told a better story than the men’s matches in the show so far, with only 205 Live challenging it.
There was a tapout by Banks outside of the ring, and that was a great moment in a line of great moments. Sasha was relentless and I think when she used her loose costume to gag Ronda both signalled her heel turn and changed the sexuality of several thousand people. Either way, Rousey won and both women looked like they’d just lived through Hell. Ronda helped Sasha up, and they looked sweet with each other. Ronda brings out brilliance in her opponents. That’s just the truth. Sasha’s gonna kick her face in an event soon, I just know it!
Finn got to look cute backstage. I’m about it, as usual!
Beth Phoenix came behind the announcers’ table for the actual main event, the Women’s Royal Rumble. Say what you will about the Mens’, everyone was clamoring for THIS Rumble. Number 1 was #LaceyEvans, in a great outfit and a questionable “Let’s Rumble!” hat. She got on the mic to use her Number 1 time to work on her character in the ring. Her makeup was lovely but I think she needed her lashes angled a little higher to open her eyes up. #2 was Natalya and she was looking good in her usual attire. She got Evans looking strong, and she also got Evan’s rear looking insanely good. I’m not gonna shy away from letting the world know what’s up, so I said it.
Corey Graves nearly choked on his own arousal as #MandyRose became Entrant 3. No new makeup or attire for her either. My baby girl Liv Morgan was 4th, and she was the first eliminated, posthaste. The 5th entrant was Mickie James and her new threads were so bright and cute!!! I personally adore when she incorporates aspects of her Native American heritage, and this outfit delivered. No new gear or makeup for 6 or 7, Ember Moon and Billie Kay respectively, and Billie refusing to go into the ring was GREAT. She wanted to wait for Peyton Royce, her Iiconics tag team partner, a fun way to protect herself and control the match from the outside. Her purple aggressiveness level was a 2 out of 10. Number 8 was #NikkiCross, my yandere waifu. The first thing she did was destroy everyone else from the top rope. She is the best, don’t @ me. #PlayWithNikki
Number 9, Peyton Royce in yellow, blazed to her tag partner’s defense, and she showed a 3 of 10 in purple aggressiveness. The actual #10 was Tamina, in her normal gear. She eliminated Mickie. Xia Li came in next at 11, and her red spangled outfit with blue dragon-style brocade was a smash! 12, Sarah Logan, represented leather fringe. Lucky Number 13 was in the most lovely gear since Wrestlemania 34, Charlotte Flair. Scarlet satin ring gear under a gold and black peacock robe made me wonder if, after all of this, I should have been doing a “gold aggressiveness” measure, or a red one…ah, if only.
My very favourite, #KairiSane, was 14. So much red lining in that lovely red coat! She hit Charlotte’s boobs a lot. I’m not sure I’d have done differently. Its so hard to look away, she’s so compelling! Logan was eliminated by Natalia, and 15 replaced her: Maria Kannelis! I love the Kannellises and Maria was a stunner in red. Red everyone!
Naomi, number 16, was beautiful in a singlet with a purple aggression rating of 3! Naomi eliminated Mandy Rose, and Mandy eliminated Naomi, cementing a feud no one wants. Candace LeRae came in like a storm at 17 and Alicia Fox hit the ring at 18. Fox is brilliant and you can’t tell me nothin’. Maria was tossed out and replaced with 19, Kacy Catanzaro. 20 was #ZelenaVega cosplaying as Vega from Street Fighter. Her purple aggressiveness level was an easy 5, but only because it was hard to look at the way she’d colourblocked it with fluorescent yellow.
21 was Ruby Riott coming hard with a surprising hair game and she brought Logan and Morgan with her to mess with the competition from the outside. 22, Dana Brooke went ahead and showed out with a level 6 purple aggression level. 23? Io Shirai. Another bae in red! Rhea Ripley was a terrifying woman at #24 and I couldn’t look away from her black catsuit with mesh cutouts! At this point, Evans, LeRae, Fox, and Evans were out. 25’s purple aggression was a very tasteful 4, with a gradient reminiscent of the bisexual pride flag colours: Sonya Deville. Hornswaggle was under the ring and he displayed a purple aggression level of 0; his interference resulted in Vega being eliminated.
The return of #AlexaBliss came with the alarm for Number 26, and she was a beauty in glittery black. I don’t think it was new gear. But I think Bliss eliminating Deville with a correctly thrown right was the good kind of new. 27, Bayley, hit a strong 7 on the purple aggression scale with the use of fringe. Catanzaro, Brooke, Riott, and Ripley were also eliminated at this point. Lana is the best, but Lana was Number 28 tonight! She hobbled towards the ring, nursing a bump during the US Title match in the pre-show. Nia Jax found her way to 29, and she went after the wobbly Lana, neither woman representing with purple, gold, or red. She eliminated Natalya and smacked everyone else in the ring. Carmella was Number 30 and her purple aggression was a smart 6 on her hems and shin guards. Io Shirai was eliminated at some point, I’m not sure how I missed it but here we are.
Becky wanted to take Lana’s place, and she got the go-ahead. The woman who can do no wrong came to make the Rumble just right! Every time I see her and Charlotte lock up for the graps I’m mesmerized, and there was enough of that here to make me very happy. Bliss eliminated Ember Moon in a great back-and-forth on the ropes. Carmella and Bayley teamed to eliminate Bliss. People forget Carmella is a really darned great wrestler, and the Rumble showed her best efforts. Then Flair eliminated her. The final four stood tall: Becky Lynch, Nia Jax, Charlotte Flair, and Bayley. Flair eliminated Bayley without waiting for anything to stop her. Nia went down next, leaving Flair v Lynch. I stopped taking notes at this point because I needed to see this.
OH MY GOD SHE WON. THE MAN’S GOING TO MANIA! AND SHE DID THE POINTING THING! That’s the whole of my notes on that ending. I think it’s appropriate.
Can’t get enough of those Sugar Crisps…oh wait, it’s called Golden Crisps these days. Brand deals are very weird to me sometimes.
For being such a good PPV, there sure have been a lot of technical flubs.