The Fashion Files: Episode One – A SmackDown Live Recap for 5/2/17

Tonight’s SmackDown comes to us from Fresno, California.  Home of a great crowd and one of my favorite breweries, Tioga Sequoia.

Sure, a few important things happened, but nothing is as important as the first episode of the Fashion Files.  Take a look, uggo.

I watched it twice just to look at all the jokes in the background.  There’s a lot of attention to detail here and I love it.

The only other team that eclipses the SmackDown tagline “Land of Opportunity” is SDL’s original Tag Team Champions, Heath Slater and Rhyno.  They’re gone now and we need a new unlikely team to propel all the way to the top.  I hope they win at “The Ol’ Windy Apple” and raise those championships above their head.  On the following Tuesday, they better complain about how ugly the straps are.

And Now, The Rest of the Show

Reclaiming the Championship

There’s that little pesky issue where Jinder has stolen the WWE Championship.  Shane comes upon Jinder on a photoshoot with the Championship and takes it back, despite Mahal’s stern-faced protests.  Shane doesn’t take kindly to Jinder’s threats and puts him in a match against Sami later that evening.

Later in the evening (I’m not a fan of recapping in order), Sami and Jinder are staring each other down in the ring.  Jinder takes control early on in the match.  Sami is favoring one of his arms.  It’s unclear to me if he’s still suffering the effects of the beatdown he took on Talking Smack the week prior.  When Sami starts to turn the tide, the Singh brothers strategically place themselves to stop both the Helluva Kick and his Tope Suicida.  Distracted by the former Bollywood Bros allows Jinder to execute his finishing move for the pinfall.

The Women’s Division

What I love about SmackDown Live’s Women’s Division is that every single wrestler seems to have their own motivation.  The flimsiest is Mr. James Ellsworth which, since he is not actually a woman, can be excused.

The nWo (New Women Order) are still working on trying to get Becky on their side, confronting her backstage.  Becky has come to a decision and needs a bit more time.

Later, the nWo attack Charlotte during an interview backstage, leaving her crumpled before their scheduled tag team match in just a few minutes.  Where does that leave her unlikely partner, Naomi?  Unfortunately, she’s now in a handicap match.  Can Becky help out?

Carmella and Nattie (to be honest, mostly Nattie) wear down Naomi over the course of about ten minutes.  Naomi has a lot of heart and she’s not giving up.  Just when all hope is gone, Charlotte’s music hits and she hobbles to the ring, just in time for a hot tag in the corner.

Charlotte helps but, with Tamini on the outside, is not quite enough to equalize the “face” team.  Charlotte is taken out by Nattie on the outside while Naomi hits the Rear View on Carmella.  Nattie distracts the ref from Naomi’s pin attempt and receives a swift kick to the temple for her efforts.  Carmella takes the moment to capitilize herself with a fistful of tights for the rollup.  It descends into chaos with all 5 women going at it.  Becky’s music hits and the action subsides.  Is she going to join up?

She shakes the hands of all three women to very loud boos.  Surely Becky isn’t turning heel.  But then she comes across James.  She just can’t do it and pushes him into one of the other women.  I’d like to think that she was about to seriously turn heel but Elsworth snapped her out of it.

Are we leading to a 6-Woman tag at Backlash?  I think that’s definitely possible.  And yes, a 6-woman tag doesn’t sound that interesting on paper but they can do great things with multi-person matches given the right amount of time to pull it off.

The Farewell (For Now) of Jericho

Shane starts the show welcoming Y2J to SmackDown Live.  The Fresno crowd loves Jericho.  The arena is littered with signs.  But that reception is short-lived.  AJ Styles shows up to let Jericho know that SmackDown is the house that AJ Styles built and that he’s also still bitter about those Y2AJ shirts that he burned in a trash can.  AJ is coming for the United States Championship…unless he doesn’t have it at the end of the night.  If I didn’t know any better, I’d think that’s a literary technique called foreshadowing.

Chris doesn’t take too kindly to those harsh words.  And you know what happens when you have harsh words for Chris Jericho?!?!  YOU JUST MADE – Nope, KO interrupts.  KO saunters out, calling everyone in the ring pathetic.  He tells AJ to get out of his ring and that just pisses Styles off.  AJ leaves the ring but comes right to Kevin and lays into him.

Later in the main event, Chris and Kevin have a match that could rival their outings at Wrestlemania and this past weekend’s Payback.  What finally did in Chris was a DDT to the exposed floor right before the ramp and a massive Pop-Up Powerbomb for the 3-count.  KO is once again your US Champion.  That wasn’t good enough for Kevin though.  He pushed aside the medical staff a couple of times to inflict more damage, ensuring that Jericho will miss several weeks of TV time for some reason.

This is probably the last we will see of Jericho for at least a month, if not more.

Drink it in, man.

Everything Else

  • Shane stumbles upon Dolph watching a video package about Shinsuke and making fun of Nak to the local talent.  Shane doesn’t take kindly to Dolph making fun of someone they clearly spent a lot of money on.  As punishment, he has to face Sin Cara.  It was a 50/50 match with Dolph picking up the win.  I think they should have booked Dolph a little stronger here.
  • I feel like Matt would never put Tye Dillenger in the everything else section, but his match tonight, while crowd pleasing, didn’t advance a feud or storyline.  Aiden English started out in the ring, drawing major heat for his singing gimmick.  I like that he’s getting over.  It’s a shame that it took Gotch asking for a release to get there.  The crowd goes nuts for Tye.  He takes control of the match early on, rolls down his knee pad, and hits a spinning variation of his single knee facebreaker for the win.
    • The self proclaimed Drama King loses it.  Upon reaching backstage, he stumbles across Jericho having an interview with Renee Ronny.  At first, Jericho seems concerned.  He wants to know what’s wrong.  But despite that, there’s no crying on SmackDown.  And do you know what happens to people who cry on SmackDown Live?  Do ya?  YOU JUST MADE THE LIST!  And so did Ronny, for good measure.  Good thing Renee is not on the list…