Volume 1: â<80><9c>Pin the Tail on the World Championâ<80>
Hey WrestleZone readers. This is the first edition of my new weekly column here at WZ.com. I hope youâ<80><99>ll enjoy reading it every week as much as I will writing it. With each edition of Offbeat Shenanigans, Iâ<80><99>ll analyze and dissect the product we all love. Yes, admit it to yourself, because itâ<80><99>s true. Even when WWE, TNA, et al, churn out their worst shows in months, youâ<80><99>re still dying to tune in the next week. And so am I.
But my fandom isnâ<80><99>t going to prevent me from taking a good, critical look at the sport. Each week, Iâ<80><99>ll be here with a fresh take on some important aspect of pro wrestling – whether that be a current storyline, or something relevant from its past. Youâ<80><99>ll notice that I, like Kevin Kelly, used a â<80><9c>childhoodâ<80> metaphor in my debut entry. I assure you this is purely a coincidence, as I drafted my column earlier in the week – shortly before the â<80><9c>otherâ<80> Kevin had posted his. My childhood story is different – and a great deal less serious – than what you read earlier in Mr. Kellyâ<80><99>s column. But, at any rate, I felt it best to acknowledge the similarity before youâ<80><99>d notice it yourselves.
Thatâ<80><99>s enough of an introduction, I think. So read on and enjoy Volume 1 of Offbeat Shenanigans!
Remember â<80><9c>Pin the tail on the donkey?â<80> I sure do. Although I wasnâ<80><99>t very good at it, the game was the highlight of many a birthday party in my younger years. I remember waiting anxiously in line, watching each of my friends play, anticipating my own turn with baited breath. And, when it finally came, Iâ<80><99>d be THRILLED. After letting the nearest parent tie a blindfold over my eyes, Iâ<80><99>d stagger, tail in hand, giddily trying to find the target. Sometimes Iâ<80><99>d get the wall, sometimes an aunt or uncleâ<80><99>s leg. When I was really lucky, Iâ<80><99>d pin it somewhere on the donkeyâ<80><99>s mid-section. But, invariably, Iâ<80><99>d lose.
After my loss, Iâ<80><99>d always want to have another go at it. â<80><9c>You canâ<80><99>t,â<80> an adult would say. â<80><9c>You had your turn.â<80> Randy Orton, The Great Khali…and yes, Batista…are you listening? â<80><9c>You had your turn.â<80> The Great Khali lost the World Heavyweight title to Batista at Unforgiven, and heâ<80><99>s demanding a rematch. In all honesty, what is the appeal of such a thing? Batista won the strap, fair and square, at Unforgiven. Heâ<80><99>s beaten Khali and never been beaten by him. Khali has only been in one other Punjabi Prison match, and he lost that one. And who really expects him to be able to climb out of the structure any faster than Batista will? No one. This match, in theory, is a big waste of time.
Then thereâ<80><99>s Randy Orton. He got a title shot without earning it, but hey, there was a legitimate emotional reason for his and Cenaâ<80><99>s first match. Then, after completely missing Cenaâ<80><99>s butt (title) with the proverbial donkey tail (pinfall), he shouldâ<80><99>ve gone to the back of the line. Instead, John Cenaâ<80><99>s father was conveniently trotted out, giving us a rehash of a barely two years old Cena-Edge storyline. Cena was disqualified, at Unforgiven, for a turnbuckle beating that wouldnâ<80><99>t have ended a 1960’s TV match. So a Last Man Standing match was scheduled for No Mercy. Now, with Cena out for at least six months, the WWE title is vacant.
So, who gets the title? Well, rather than treating fans to an exciting tournament, or something of that nature, Randy Orton will be involved in a (most likely) one-on-one match this Sunday, for the WWE title. What on earth did Orton do to deserve a WWE title shot? Please refresh my memory. Because it seems that his conflict was with John Cena, and that Orton, in fact, was never really the number one contender. If defeating the champ by disqualification earned you a title shot, then a lot more guys would be getting them. Get to the back of the line, Randy.
The third title match at No Mercy is CM Punk vs. Big Daddy V, for the ECW heavyweight championship. We sat through three weeks of the ECW Title Chase – with almost an hour logged in match time – to find out whether Elijah Burke, Kevin Thorn, Tommy Dreamer, or Steven Richards would face Punk at the pay-per-view. Then, after Dreamer surprisingly took the match this past Tuesday, we found out that WWE had been wasting our time. Big Daddy V, whoâ<80><99>d had absolutely nothing to do with the ECW title picture, came out and defeated a winded Dreamer…making himself the new number one contender.
Big Vis has set a new precedent in cheating at party games, with this one. Heâ<80><99>s like the big angry kid, who wasnâ<80><99>t even invited to the party in the first place. Then, after crashing the bash, he stepped to the front of the â<80><9c>donkeyâ<80> line, and told the guest of honor he could do things better. Thereâ<80><99>s very little interest, athletically or emotionally speaking, stirred up by a V vs. Punk match. And yet, thatâ<80><99>s what weâ<80><99>re getting.
Weâ<80><99>ll see what happens at the event this Sunday, but Cena vs. Orton was previously rumored for Cyber Sunday, so donâ<80><99>t count on this being Ortonâ<80><99>s last shot. In fact, ditto for V, and maybe even Khali. For that matter, if Khali does win, Mr. â<80><9c>Give Me Another Title Shotâ<80> himself, Batista, definitely wonâ<80><99>t be going to the back of line.
Grow up, kids, and learn to play fair.
Kevin is also a contributing writer for Pro Wrestling Illustrated and The Wrestler. Email comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.