Yep, here’s the 2012 Royal Rumble. Forget the shitty video quality for a second and think about the match. Not sure exactly what the deal was with the talent roster but with Daniel Bryan, John Cena, Big Show, Kane, Mark Henry, CM Punk and Dolph Ziggler all participating in the undercard there was absolutely NO star power for the Rumble (although two of these guys would do double duty).
Rather than worry too much about the lack of stars the bookers seemed to embrace it and went over the top with the comedy booking and while I’ll never place it in the pantheon of Rumbles, I really enjoyed the silliness of it and the fact that it was a little unpredictable until the few big names got in and you knew it was going to be one of them. They doubled up on the legends booking as well.
In hindsight the problem with this match is the problem with the promotion in general. It was a perfect time to try to get some momentum for a few of the mid-carders and in that sense it was a failed opportunity. Miz went 45 minutes and failed to impress. Cody went 41 minutes and actually did a decent job. That was it for the long bookings. Why didn’t Santino (Entrant 9) last more than two minutes? Fans would have eaten up him surviving 30+ minutes and making it to crunch time (see: 2012 Elimination Chamber). Why didn’t Wade Barrett (entrant 26) last more than three minutes? Give him a number in the top 15 and have him go 25 minutes and try to gain some steam. And don’t tell me people wouldn’t have enjoyed a longer run from Ricardo. Eh whatever…it’s their money.
The up side is that it was a free flowing match, guys came in, got their stuff in and got out. It worked for what it was, I remember laughing for much of this and Kofi’s escape from elimination was incredible. Scott loved the match and gave it five stars on first glance and ****1/2 on rewatch. I couldn’t give it more than ***1/2 FWIW. The link to his review is here. Take it away Justin Roberts!