Just like Raw, Smackdown wasted little time naming the participants of the Fatal 4 Way World Heavyweight Championship match at Fatal 4 Way. With no one quitting or GMs being hired, however, the Blue Brand was able to put the emphasis on the World Title one way or another. We saw the return of the Undertaker, the unveiling of a new look for C.M. Punk, and a quality mid-card match. Let’s look at Smackdown.
Theodore Long/Drew McIntyre promo
Theodore Long opens the show to announce the Fatal 4 Way qualifying matches. Long gave the Big Show an automatic berth because of his DQ win over Jack Swagger at Over The Limit. The other two qualifying matches announced were C.M. Punk v. Kane and Rey Mysterio v. the returning Undertaker. Before Long can get much further, Martin Luther King’s number one Scottish supporter, Drew Mcintyre, interrupts to give Long another letter from Mr. McMahon suspending Matt Hardy without pay for attacking McIntyre after his match Sunday. How can you continue a feud if someone is “suspended?” This omnipresent McMahon confuses me; reports have said that the character of Mr. McMahon might be retired, but here he is, still keeping Long on probation (this is a long ass probation, too. You’d think Long committed armed robbery). Hardy tries to get to McIntyre, but Long pleads with him not to do anything stupid. Perhaps Hardy will be back next week, considering McIntyre was reinstated one week later. This is a stupefying angle. I hope things clear up before people lose interest.
Drew McIntyre and WWE World Heavyweight Champion Jack Swagger v. The Big Show and WWE Intercontinental Champion Kofi Kingston
This is not only a rematch from last week among the participants, but from Sunday as well. The majority of the match has Kingston playing the face-in-peril while McIntyre and Swagger work him over. The Big Show stole the show (no pun intended) when he was in the ring. His recent face turn has revitalized his career; he is so much more fun and believable as his current persona. I loved when he turned Swagger around, who was selling the effects of the post-match beat down at Over The Limit, and gave him a kidney punch. Kingston gets the hot tag and Show clears house before Swagger bails on McIntyre, who falls victim to the Knockout Punch. Next week, Kingston will defend his IC Title against McIntyre. I hope Kingston goes over and McIntyre moves on, leaving the IC TItle spot to Cody Rhodes. I wouldn’t say I have a “man crush” on Rhodes, but he deserves it.
Straight Edge Society promo
In the locker room, we get another creepy mirror shot of the SES with Punk afraid to go out into the WWE Universe. Luke Gallows and Serena convince him that he still looks perfect and he obliges. I can’t wait to see this.
Vickie Guerrero/Dolph Ziggler promo
Before Ziggler enters. Vickie is in the back with Curt Hawkins and Vance Archer, who plan on making an impact by not wrestling. I did like how Vickie seemed indifferent towards Hawkins considering their past in La Familia. Oh, continuity. You are awesome. Anyways, Ziggler arrives and Vickie goes creepy cougar on his ass. She appreciates his help and at first, Ziggler seems grossed out, but then realizing that he can manipulate Vickie, he plays along. I guess Ziggler is the new Edge. I have read reports that the WWE wants to elevate Ziggler through Christian, so maybe this is the start of a long rise for Ziggler. Anyways, Vickie makes the match you could predict last week: Dolph Ziggler and Chavo Guerrero v. Christian and HORNSWOGGLE. Ugh.
C.M. Punk v. Kane – WWE World Heavyweight Championship Fatal 4 Way Qualifying Match
I loved Punk’s hesitation to come out, but he finally makes it into the ring and removes the towel. If you are looking to see Punk bald, you’ll have to wait, because he had a mask on. It was a brilliant move by WWE Creative, giving fans more reason to hate Punk. I wanted to see some sort of promo between Punk and Kane since the latter interfered and allowed Mysterio to shave Punk’s head. We get no explanation and instead get a mediocre matchup. Punk worked Kane’s leg and Kane did a great job selling the damage. Punk wins with the GTS (which I read he had to do three times to get one that looked “good” and it still looked awful) and he moves onto the Fatal 4 Way in June. I don’t think he has a chance to win, but it will definitely make it interesting. On the other hand, are we never going to know why Kane helped Mysterio? And with Punk in the Fatal 4 Way at Fatal 4 Way, will there be any sort of feud between the two?
Dolph Ziggler and Chavo Guerrero (with Vickie Guerrero) v. Christian and Hornswoggle
Would someone remind Hornswoggle that DX no longer exists? Thanks. I don’t want to talk about this. Christian wins with the Killswitch, but for once, it looked as if Chavo actually had a chance to win and that was a bright spot. Ziggler locks on the Sleeper Hold on Christian after the match and this feud will continue. As long as it just focuses on Christian and Ziggler, I am intrigued. It won’t though.
LayCool backstage promo
Layla El and Michelle McCool are in the back explaining why they are co-Women’s Champions. According to LayCool, since it was a handicap match, they both earned the titles. The key in this promo was the mentioning of jealousy. Envy will definitely play into the face turn of one of these Divas (probably Layla) in the near future.
M.V.P. v. Luke Gallows (with Serena)
It seems that other than that one week where he teamed with J.T.G. against the Dudebusters, M.V.P. has only wrestled the Straight Edge Society for the past month. For Gallows to be seen as a credible star on his own, he needed to win some matches. After taking the job for M.V.P. for a month, Gallows finally gets the victory after interference from the Masked Man. I really enjoyed the beginning of the match with the pseudo-boxing match; it was a nice change of pace from the normal lock-up in the center of the ring. I would love to see the SES hold all the gold eventually; Punk with the WHC, Gallows/Masked Man as Tag Champions, and Serena as Women’s Champion. Gallows is a great talent and I am glad he has come into his own as a singles star.
The Undertaker v. Rey Mysterio – WWE World Heavyweight Championship Fatal 4 Way Qualifying Match
This was the Undertaker’s first appearance on Smackdown since Wrestlemania, but third overall (he wrestled Swagger on the “volcano” episode of Raw and then again against Edge on Raw a few weeks ago). The Undertaker looked like he was in great shape and there were some entertaining spots, including Mysterio’s senton onto the Undertaker after he did his trademark sit-up. We also get the now-typical Mysterio sliding bump onto the floor. This time, there was no barber chair. The outcome of this match was obvious; you don’t bring back the Undertaker and have him lose. Taker wins with a Tombstone Piledriver a la Wrestlemania XXIV when he catches Mysterio’s moonsault. The Undertaker looked a bit shaken up after the match (UPDATE 5/31: Wrestleview’s Steve Gerweck is reporting that the Undertaker suffered a concussion, a broken orbital bone, and a broken nose during the seated senton bump. It is “50/50” in terms of whether or not Undertaker will be able to compete at Fatal 4 Way).
Reports have Mysterio taking time off, so this might be the time. Before knowing that the Undertaker would face Mysterio, I assumed Mysterio would qualify to continue his feud with Punk (UPDATE 5/31: If Undertaker cannot go, Mysterio will take his place, so we might get this after all). On Raw, Edge is with Randy Orton and Sheamus is with John Cena. We don’t get that. Instead, we have Jack Swagger v. The Big Show v. C.M. Punk v. The Undertaker in four weeks. It should be a good one and I can’t wait to see how it unfolds.