Publishing this two days after the event aired, I can’t help but question if there’s any point. Then I realised, one of the reasons that I cover WWE PPVs here is to track their progress and development over time. Missing one, in a year that will have fourteen by its end, may not seem a big deal. However, I feel that not reporting this one PPV would be unfair on certain talents within. For example, Randy Orton and Jinder Mahal have been running a questionable and tiresome feud for some time now. It would be the height of injustice not to comment on their Punjabi Prison match at this year’s Battleground; it made me quite like Mahal for the first time, which is always worthy of discussion.… [continue reading]
The name Great Balls of Fire doesn’t exactly inspire high-expectations. This is, partly, why I found myself unable to get too excited for it. Of course, i’m not that shallow and it’s not the only reason. In addition, certain elements of my personal and professional life became too demanding in the past month to spare time for weekly editions of Raw. This meant that this was another PPV that I went into somewhat blindly. I was peripherally aware of certain storylines; it’s been hard to ignore the rumblings between Big Cass and Enzo Amore, for example. Also, the wildly anticipated clash between Samoa Joe and Brock Lesnar was a clear selling point.… [continue reading]
Recently, over at our YouTube, we’ve been putting out bite-sized editions of our regular podcasts. This is a concept I have to give credit to Benjamin for, though I have contributed in small ways. The thrust behind these is threefold. Firstly, it’s a good exercise for editing skills. Secondly, we thought it would be intriguing to present small snippets of our interviews in, occasionally, new contexts. As a final, and more cynical, drive, it merely makes it easier to digest a source material that often exceeds an hour in length.
Chopped down to a strict limit of no more than two minutes and twenty seconds (comment with your thoughts on why we chose this length!), these titbits get in and out without too much bother to the idle scroller.… [continue reading]
For some reason, despite an intriguing card, I found myself unable to get too excited for Money in the Bank this year. I put that down to some personal rumblings going on in my life at the moment. That aside, I knew we’d be in for something worth seeing. I’d probably resigned to just watch the damn thing, rather than overthinking it too much. With a historic women’s Money in the Bank match scheduled, along with the standard edition as the main event, this pay-per-view was certain to be memorable in some way.
In the end, this was surely one of the strangest cards I’ve ever seen.… [continue reading]
As SmackDown‘s first dedicated PPV post-WrestleMania, my expectations for BackLash were as low as they were for Payback. In fact, if anything, my expectations were a little lower. However you try to dance around it, SmackDown‘s a B-show. That doesn’t mean it can’t bring some compelling things to the table. It’s just that, by and large, you can always look to Raw for a bit of added spectacle. With a main event pitching Jinder Mahal against Randy Orton, my hopes were far from high. The only thing on the card of real intrigue, to me, was the inevitable debut of Shinsuke Nakamura on a WWE main roster.… [continue reading]
In the wake of a largely enjoyable WrestleMania, I always expected Payback this year to naturally fall short. The lead-in to it was weak. Its card didn’t seem to present anything of any intrigue. After all, the superstar shake-up was quite a heavy distraction. That aside, there was still plenty of room for something to be pulled out of the bag. On the whole, it would be fair to describe Payback as a slightly below-par affair. However, with the inclusion of the awful “House of Horrors” match, I can’t help but give this a pretty resoundingly negative review.
There wasn’t really a single segment of this PPV that engaged me.… [continue reading]
Hear Donald Trump discussed on the Secret Cave Podcast!
While everyone else taps out their vitriol or support for the USA’s new President-elect, I think it’s best that Secret Cave not overtly take any political stance. Since we’re a site that likes to focus on the forgotten elements of things, I thought i’d throw his ludicrous WWE appearances into the hat instead. After all, this is the first time a WWE Hall-of-Famer will be taking residence at the White House, and I do think that holds some significance worth implying. He’s had a lot of important positions in his time, but President is several steps up from noted-wrestling-cameo. … [continue reading]
“AS GOD AS MY WITNESS, HE IS BROKEN IN HALF.”
Mankind plummets 16ft into an announce table from the top of a cell, and Jim Ross — genuinely fearing for Mankind’s life — reacts with the same conviction he would if he knew there was no threat at all.
The greatest wrestling personalities are the greatest actors, athletes and public speakers. They’re the ones who create the hyperreality of wrestling, and allow us slip in and out of the state of suspended disbelief.
Despite the WWE’s best efforts in the past, there’s no way you’re still unaware that wrestling is scripted.… [continue reading]
Hear the writers discuss this subject on the Secret Cave Podcast!
As the Phenom, the Dead Man and a clearly Big Evil, The Undertaker has been the stuff of legends from his very beginnings. It’s not even something many people have questioned or considered. The Undertaker is absolutely brilliant and it’s as simple as that. The closest anyone will get is smarks dissecting his in-ring limitations, while openly accepting his undeniable quality. I would find it utterly impossible to understand any argument that paints him as less than iconic. A true deity in the world of sports entertainment, his long and decorated career is absolutely one of the most important things in the industry. … [continue reading]
Controversial backstage antics aside, you’d be hard pressed to find anyone who doesn’t consider Shawn Michaels one of the best ring technicians to ever enter the squared circle. The King of the Oversell (until dethroned by The Rock) and one of the most entertaining athletes to hit our screens, Michaels completely voids the crimes of his personality with every inspired flourish and line of mic work. A magnet for five-star matches, you could always be assured that he would bring you fluid execution and developed psychology.
A holder of a variety of championship belts, his success is officially well documented. Generally well received by the audience too, finding anyone who will straight up deny his talents is a rarity I greet for its comic value. … [continue reading]