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SmackDown RunDown Live (11/01/16): Chinless Redemption


It’s glow time! Another edition of SmackDown RunDown Live rises from the dead and this week, the Survivor Series battalion of the Blue Brand is two tag teams away from being complete. Let’s get down to it.

James Ellsworth redeems himself to Dean Ambrose

James Ellsworth, you done good.

This week’s episode was a sigh of relief for me. After Ellsworth’s screw-up last week, I was really afraid that the chinless wonder was in cahoots with AJ Styles. His persistent plea to accompany Dean Ambrose at ringside was also a red flag for me. He was annoying in a very intentional way and I was ready for a stupid heel turn. Ellsworth did a great job in making sure the main event didn’t feel like a tired rehash. The repeat main event was also excusable since Ambrose finally picked up a win over Styles.


Ellsworth’s actions tonight enhanced Ambrose’s babyface character. I was expecting the lunatic to destroy him but a passive-aggressive reaction was probably the best way to address the mistake. Creative should now focus on building up Styles in preparation for Survivor Series because let’s face it, the Phenomenal One is in a bit of a slump. Losing twice to a jobber and then getting a DQ win do not really resemble a good track record. Styles needs to be built as the leader of SmackDown as the WWE World Champion. He better survive his first 5-on-5 Survivor Series match.


As for Ellsworth, I think it’s time we find him a new home. I don’t think Ambrose and Styles need his presence anymore since Ellsworth already did his job: to get Ambrose over as a believable babyface and Styles as the dastardly heel. Maybe Creative can squeeze Ellsworth in some storylines on SmackDown Live or send him to NXT where he can gather a larger following. Either way, Ellsworth’s career is far from over. WWE is not done milking this cow yet.
 
Some Blue Brand Vibes and Blues—Live!


Happy Halloween, everybody! How was your long weekend? Did you have a wonderful time? Now that you’re back, let’s have a quick round of Vibes and Blues! As always, Vibe means good job while Blue means no… job? Anyway, you get the idea. Let’s begin!

Vibe/Blue: MizTV was must-see this week as Daniel Bryan announced the members of the Survivor Series men’s team. The verbal exchange between Bryan and Miz made the segment worth watching and that’s why their promo gets a Vibe. It’s good to know that Creative isn’t letting this mini-rivalry go away. What made this Blue is the choice of team members. I just don’t get why the male and female teams didn’t have qualifying matches while the tag teams did. It also bugs me that 4/5 members of the male team are heels. I guess Corbin is there because they need a big man.

Vibe: How come they didn’t include Dolph Ziggler in the team? This guy always survives elimination matches, you know. Anyway, it’s not all bad for the Show-Off. His Intercontinental Championship open challenge to anyone from the RAW roster is gonna be awesome. I definitely did not see that coming. Who do you think will step up to the challenge? I’m guessing Sami Zayn or Rusev. Also, Curt Hawkins is dead.

Vibe: Alexa Bliss and Carmella also stepped up their game by beating the Women’s Champion and the Survivor Series female captain in a tag match. Alexa gets to pin Becky Lynch once again and after the match, the two delivered a wonderful promo that dissed the RAW women’s roster and their respective rivals at the same time. As Becky once said, Alexa really loves her fairytale references, but I so dig it.

Blue: So… Randy Orton’s eyes were glowing. That backstage segment was really weird and cheesy. Maybe it was Orton’s script or his bored delivery, but you can’t give him a Wyatt-like promo. The glowing eyes also felt out of place and unnecessary. I was about to argue against the inclusion of Orton and Wyatt on team SmackDown Live, but then I thought, I don’t want to see an Orton vs Kane match at Survivor Series, so yeah, have them wreak havoc on team RAW.

Blue: The qualifying matches for the tag team Survivor Series team weren’t that good. I mean, American Alpha had to beat Spirit Squad while the Usos had to overcome the Headbashers or whatever. It will be a lot easier if every team on SmackDown Live was handpicked by the management if these are the kind of matches we’re going to see. If you want to make a qualifying match a little more legit, at least wrestle for a few minutes longer.

SMACKDOWN RUNDOWN: It’s all about Survivor Series and aside from the main event, every segment revolved around the formation of the teams. James Ellsworth’s redemption definitely stole the show and took my attention away from the questionable selection of Survivor Series teams. It’s a fitting end to a very entertaining storyline and I’m sure the legend of Ellsworth has only just began. This week’s episode should receive a B+.

Did you enjoy this week’s SmackDown Live? Were you lost in the gaze of Randy Orton’s glowing eyes? Drop your insights down at the comments.

Photos from WWE.com

*****


Ricky Jay Publico (@HarambeMustLive) is a wrestling fan who enjoys watching high flyers and brawlers battle it out in the ring. A known Botchamania binge-watcher, he claims to have memorized the chronological order of Royal Rumble winners, but fails to remember who won in 2004. He writes stories about life and nonsense.

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