The SmarK Rant for WWE Survivor Series 2021 – 11.21.21
Definitely a strong contender for worst buildup ever for a “major” show right here.
Live from Brooklyn, NY
Your hosts are Michael Cole, Corey Graves & Pat McAfee
Becky Lynch v. Charlotte Flair
I guess Becky is a babyface again? They slug it out to start and Becky goes for the armbar right away, but Charlotte spears her and they fight to the floor. Back in, Charlotte takes her down with a neckbreaker and boots Becky down to take over, then takes her to the apron and runs her into the post while giving her even more of a wedgie. That’s quite the gear on Becky tonight, I should point out. Becky sends her into the railing, but Charlotte drops her on it in return and they’re both out on the floor. Back in, they exchange shots and Charlotte takes her down with a clothesline and slugs away while we SHAKE N ZOOM. Charlotte goes after the knee in the corner, but Becky is BUILDING MOMENTUM until Charlotte counters the armbar with a powerbomb for two. Becky tries the exploder, but Charlotte suplexes her into the corner and gets the Andrade double moonsault for two. Becky with a small package for two, but Charlotte goes to the apron and necks her in an awkward sequence. Becky slugs away from inside the ring and the camera SHAKES AND ZOOMS, and a guillotine legdrop gets two. Becky takes her down and tries some kind of armbar and thatdoesn’t work, so she gets a rollup for two instead. Charlotte goes for a big boot and they accidentally collide and Charlotte gets two off that. They were doing so good to start and it’s been falling completely apart for like 5 minutes straight. Charlotte gets the big boot on the second try for two. Becky beats Charlotte down in response and goes up, but misses a legdrop and that looked bad too. Becky recovers with the uranage for two. Meanwhile Pat is like “They’re gonna talk about this match for 20 years and make documentaries about it!” Come on now. Becky gets a figure-four and Charlotte reverses as even Michael Cole can’t keep track of which show they’re on. Becky bails and Charlotte tries the moonsault and misses completely, literally not even making contact. Back in, that gets two. Charlotte tries her armbar, but Becky quickly makes the ropes while Pat talks about how it’s “locked in deep”. Not that deep. Graves is making Mcafee sound like a complete clown on commentary here. And then Charlotte rolls her up, but Becky reverses for the pin at 18:22. At least it wasn’t a DQ or distraction finish, I guess. Started as a fun fight and then went too long and kept getting sloppier and sloppier. ***1/2 (Edit to add: The quality level for the rest of the show has caused me to reevaluate and give it another star)
Men’s Survivor Series match: Bobby Lashley, Austin Theory, Finn Balor, Kevin Owens & Seth Rollins v. King Woods, Jeff Hardy, Sheamus, Happy Corbin & Drew McIntyre
Seems like “Announcing the team and then switching guys out for no reason” is the only real storyline in this one. Seth and KO argue over who starts the match and Kevin wins that one and then decides to walk out on the match at 0:54. So Woods beats on Theory with chops in the corner and dropkicks him on the ropes for two. QUESTION: How can Xavier Woods be considered a legitimate King when Nakamura is already the reigning regent? FOLLOWUP: Why didn’t they draft one of them to the other show and set up a match here to unify the bloodline? Has either guy even brought this up on TV or otherwise? Happy Corbin comes in and hits Seth with a clothesline as I’m not really clear on whether I’m supposed to be cheering Corbin or what, but I’m not going to. Hardy comes in with a splash on Seth for two and the Smackdown team works on Seth’s arm. Over to Balor, but Corbin puts the boots to him and Drew gets a suplex for two. Corbin keeps Balor in the corner, but he rolls up Corbin for two. Corbin with the Deep Six for two and everyone runs in and does their big moves, leading to Balor hitting Corbin with the coup de grace at 7:52 to even it up. Hardy goes to work on Balor and drops an elbow for two, but Rollins takes Jeff to the corner and the RAW guys go to work on him. Can Pat please SHUT UP already? Asking for a friend. Back to Balor, who goes to a chinlock, but Jeff fights out and hits the Whisper in the Wind while Drew and Lashley fight on the floor and Drew gets run into the post as a result. Woods gets a hot tag and runs wild on Theory, but he goes up and Rollins shakes him down. Lashley spears Woods and finishes with the Hurt Lock at 13:20. So Drew comes in and they slug it out as this is supposed to be a big match after we’ve already seen it literally 15 million times in 2021. LITERALLY. FIFTEEN MILLION TIMES. Not even exaggerating, check Cagematch. Drew clotheslines him to the floor and they fight out there and both get counted out at 16:22. So Seth mocks Drew and gets headbutted, allowing Sheamus to get two. Balor comes in with a sunset flip on Sheamus for two, but Sheamus slams him for two. Balor comes back and gets his shit in, but Sheamus boots him for the pin at 19;31. Theory comes in with a missile dropkick on Sheamus for two and Rollins comes in for some double-teaming and gets a suplex for two on Sheamus. Sheamus fights back with a backbreaker and brings Hardy in for a splash that gets two. Sheamus and Jeff team up for a bit and we get stereo forearms on the apron and the White Noise on Rollins. But then Theory distracts Sheamus and Rollins superkicks him for two. Rollins takes out Hardy on the floor, allowing Theory to roll up Sheamus at 24:52. And then Sheamus turns on his partner and lays him out, leaving Seth to hit a frog splash for two. Rollins and Theory double-team Jeff, but he fights them off and hits the swanton on Theory at 26:54. So this leaves Hardy and Rollins, as Jeff makes the comeback and gets his shit in, but Rollins hits him with a forearm to the back of the neck and gets two. Hardy catches the curb stomp and hits the Twist of Fate, and goes up with the swanton, but it hits the knees and Seth stomps him at 30:00 to win the match as sole survivor. Yay, the babyface loses in the end! Just kind of an average Survivor Series elimination match. ***1/4 So all the stuff with the Mysterios getting taken out of the match led to…nothing. And in fact the team won without them so it was a good decision.
Earlier today, Vince McMahon arrives with some kind of a golden egg.
Meanwhile, Roman Reigns visits Vince in his office and shows off his egg. Apparently it’s from the Red Notice movie, but it’s the real thing and it’s worth $100 million. Roman is unimpressed. I’ve been wanting to watch that one but this show is already making me not want to.
Dwayne Johnson Memorial Battle Royale, sponsored by Pizza Hut:
There also appears to be picnic tables with boxes of Pizza Hut pizza, and the Street Profits are literally selling us pizza on the way to the ring. This is so fucking stupid. Omas throws some geeks out while AJ waits on the floor, and then R-Truth tries to bribe Omas with pizza and Otis gets it instead. The various geeks throw each other out while the crowd chants “We want pizza”, giving the match all the respect it deserves. After a grueling six minutes off action, Sami Zayn tries to rally the Smackdown guys, but they turn on him and he gets thrown out. Omas throws more guys out and then the remaining guys finally team up on him but it’s too late and he throws them all out and wins at 10:34 in completely anticlimactic manner. Complete waste of time and pizza.
The Usos v. Randy Orton & Riddle
Riddle goes for the armbar on Jimmy right away, but can’t sink it in, so he hits Jimmy with a slam instead. Orton comes in and tries the RKO, but Jimmy bails and regroups with Jey on the floor. Back in the ring, Jey works on Randy in the corner, but Riddle comes in with a senton for two. He chases Jimmy to the floor and hits a floating bro on the floor, but Jey sends him into the railing and the Usos double-team him out there. Back in, that gets two. Jey with a backdrop suplex and he slugs away in the corner, but Riddle hits him with a high kick and Jimmy cuts off the tag with a chinlock. Suplex gets two, but Orton decides to take matters into his own hands and comes in and drops both Usos on the table and then hits Jey with the draping DDT. Jey escapes the RKO with a superkick, so Riddle tags himself back in and runs wild. But then Jey cuts him off with a neckbreaker for two. Riddle with a german suplex for two, but Jimmy comes in with a samoan drop for two. Usos double-team Riddle and hit the double superkick for two. Riddle fights back and falls into his corner so Randy can tag himself in, but Jimmy superkicks Riddle anyway and hits the flying splash, landing in an RKO on the way down and getting pinned at 14:43. Neat finish, not much to the match otherwise. **1/2
Meanwhile, Adam and Sonya meet with Vince now, and the egg is MISSING. Vince blames everyone and sends Pearce to go interview everyone. And apparently both brands are going to be on the show tomorrow so that everyone can be interviewed about the $100 million golden egg. This is their plan for ratings. A GOLDEN EGG. Which is apparently worth $100 million and Vince left it sitting on his desk where it was stolen despite a million camera people filming everything. And he doesn’t call the police, but rather instructs the heel authority figure to question people on the wrestling show the next night. Not RIGHT NOW, mind you, but the next night on RAW.
Meanwhile, Xia Li is coming soon to Smackdown. Maybe they should start making vignettes leading up to them getting pink slipped.
Women’s Survivor Series match: Bianca Belair, Carmella, Queen Zelina, Liv Morgan & Rhea Ripley v. Natalya, Shayna Baszler, Toni Storm, Shotzi & Sasha Banks
Carmella wastes time with a beauty mask and Toni Storm rolls her up at 1:15. Shotzi comes in next and goes after Belair, who takes her down a few times, but Shotzi puts the boots to her. Bianca splashes her for two. Liv Morgan, who apparently has a championship opportunity “down the road” coming up, comes in with a flying knee on Shotzi, but Natalya comes in with a suplex on her for two. Rollup gets two. Liv misses a charge and Natalya gets the slingshot atomic drop and a dropkick for two. Liv gets a sunset flip for two and Rhea comes in and beats on Nattie with a headbutt and dropkick for two. Remember when Rhea was winning the World title at Wrestlemania earlier this year? Pepperidge Farm remembers. Shayna comes in and works the arm, but Rhea fights back, only for Shayna to slam her for two. Sasha tries to get the tag but Shotzi yanks her off the apron while Rhea tries for the Riptide and Shayna escapes. Shayna with an armbar out of the corner, but Rhea stomps out of it and everyone comes in and does their moves. Shayna does the choke on Rhea, but Rhea slams out of it and the crowd is really dead. Finally we get Sasha and Bianca to wake them up and Sasha quickly takes her down into the Bank Statement, but Bianca powers out. Sasha comes back with a tornado DDT for two. Belair gets a spinebuster for two, but Banks escapes the KOD and Zelina tags herself in. She comes in with a bodypress on Sasha for two as apparently no one on the Smackdown team wants to tag in, but finally Toni comes in and puts away Zelina at 14:11. Liv comes in and backslides Toni for two, and a sloppy rollup gets two. Liv gets a flatliner for the pin at 15:11. Shayna comes in with the choke on Liv and Shotzi and Sasha continue bitching at each other, and hit splashes on Liv for the pin at 16:29. Ripley comes in with a delayed suplex on Sasha for two. She goes up with a missile dropkick, but Shayna and Shotzi team up for a knee strike to finish at 18:01. That leaves Bianca 4-on-1. She gets a delayed suplex on Nattie for two. Nattie with a powerbomb out of the corner for two, but Sasha and Shotzi both try to tag in and they get into a fight on the floor and Sasha is counted out while her team keeps her on the floor at 20:10 in an incredibly lame elimination. So Team Smackdown all goes after Bianca and Nattie gets the Sharpshooter, but Bianca rolls her up for the pin at 21:28 after Nattie collides with Shayna. Rollup on Shayna gets two. Glam Slam gets the pin at 21:59 as Smackdown look like complete clowns. So Shotzi is the last one left and she gets the choke on Bianca in the corner and tries a bodypress, but Bianca powers up. Shotzi tries a sliced bread, but Bianca reverses to the KOD and gets the win at 23:42 to be the sole survivor. This was a pretty big mess and Smackdown somehow managing to blow a 4-1 advantage was ridiculous. **1/4
Big E v. Roman Reigns
Fear not, in case you missed the one week of buildup this match had, there’s a lengthy video package to recap it all. I should also point out that after all the talk about “brand supremacy” we’ve literally seen RAW win every match thus far with no mention from the announcers. They fight for the lockup to start and Roman bails for advice from Paul Heyman. Back in, they slug it out with forearms and Roman puts him down with a clothesline for two. E gets a big boot and tries the splash on the apron, THE HARDEST PART OF THE RING, but that misses. Roman puts him down with the Drive By and back in for some shots in the corner. Roman with a back elbow for two and a big boot for two. Roman threatens to go personally slap around everyone in the audience and then tosses Big E into the post to emphasize his displeasure, but Big E runs him into the stairs and they head back into the ring. Big E with the belly to belly to make a comeback, and the big splash follows. Roman cuts him off with a samoan drop for two. Roman with a powerbomb for two and he sets up the superman punch, but Big E blocks it, so Roman hits a Rock Bottom for two. Superman punch puts Big E down, but he pumps himself up again, so Roman hits another pair of them and goes back to slagging the Brooklyn crowd. But then Big E recovers again and does his spear to the floor, with Roman landing on his feet and nearly tearing a quad. Back in, Roman gets the spear for two. Roman goes for the guillotine and E powers out of that, but Roman blocks another E spear with a guillotine on the apron, and then back in for another guillotine. Big E powers him into the Big Ending, but Roman’s in the ropes. They fight on the floor and Roman runs him into the stairs and follows with a superman punch while the announcers talk about a knee injury suffered by Big E that we haven’t seen evidence of at all. And into the ring, Roman finishes him with the spear at 22:00 to complete the foregone conclusion. This was pretty good, but wasn’t on the level of Roman’s usual matches this year, as they worked a really slow pace for the most part. ***1/2
And for those wondering, the show-long celebration of the 25 years of the Rock led to absolutely nothing and Rock didn’t so much as send in a video message.
Anyway, this was the very definition of a thumbs in the middle show, with nothing outright bad but absolutely no stakes for anything or reason to care who won or lost. Except for the GOLDEN EGG, which is apparently what we’re going to tune into the show to watch.