After last night’s invasion on RAW, the SmackDown locker room is bound to be on edge. Could the red team take them down? Or will they stay back for the meantime?
On the topic of last night, the women of SmackDown Live are seen boasting about their work. As the group discuss the invasion, the topic of Survivor Series comes up.General Manager Daniel Bryan announces that “all five” women will compete at Survivor Series on Team SmackDown. This includes Charlotte Flair, Naomi, Carmella (who cannot find James Ellsworth anywhere), Tamina and Becky Lynch. And although Lana is very much in the room, Bryan apologizes to her, as she isn’t going to be in the team. The conversation then moves on and the women debate about which one of them will be the captain. The G.M. intervenes to say that the captain will be decided in a Fatal Five Way, consisting of the current members.
In the next scene we find out that James has been captured for a Breezango skit, titled “Fashion Dogs”. And when Carmella shows up to retrieve him, Fandango opens up her briefcase to find a pair of Ellsworth’s dirty underwear in there… Let’s move on, shall we?
Before the Fatal 5 Way can begin, Greg Hamilton’s delivers a special message to the audience. He tells us to welcome “the most technically gifted, the most ruthless, the greatest Superstar of the entire Hart family, and the true queen of SmackDown Live, [our] Women’s champion, Natalya!” – all whilst the champ stands boastfully in the ring. Okay then.
The next then starts and the women go at it immediately. Becky and Naomi are suplexed by Tamina, whilst Charlotte receives a Superkick from Snuka. Carmella then tries to celebrate with her former Welcoming Committee buddy, but Tamina delivers a Samoan Drop, knocking her down.
When we return from break, all of the women are outside of the ring. Carmella is on Tamina’s back, so Snuka attempts to smash her into the side of the ring – though she does trip and fall herself. Charlotte then attacks Tamina with a few whips and a kick, followed by a boot to Carmella’s face and a suplex to Snuka. Lynch then takes down Flair with a Flying Fire-arm, which results in her receiving a jump from the inside of the ring by Naomi. The former glowing SmackDown Women’s champion then attempts a Hurricanrana on Charlotte, but gets slammed into the side of the barricade.
At one point we see Lana push Charlotte, in which the Ravishing Russian gets knocked to the ground by Flair.
Later in the match, Carmella gets Becky in the ring with attempts to pin her. And after all of her attempts fail, Lynch quickly puts Miss Money In The Bank in the Dis-Arm-Her, forcing her to tap. Say hello to our new captain of the SmackDown Live women’s team!
After the match, Becky expresses her excitement over being captain of the blue brand. She states that her mind is fully focused on victory, as unlike last year, the blue team will walk out as the winners.
Thoughts: This week’s episode isn’t the most exciting, but unlike recent weeks, it’s semi important.
Going into Survivor Series, we need to see the most competitive side of the women come out. By allowing the Superstars to compete against one another so early on, we see that. We’re getting to see the ladies as enemies right before we see them as team-mates. And it’s great to get that out of the way early – now we can go straight to the brand vs brand side of it (or so we hope).
Although there’s no invasion like RAW, this episode still stands on its own two feet. Unlike the past few weeks, something worth watching actually happens. And that’s the fact that we get a captain. It may not be the most exciting of episodes, but compared to previous weeks, it’s a lot better. We see a new story begin, and we see somebody new(ish) get put in the spotlight.
The fact that Carmella loses may be a controversial one, but it proves to be a useful tactic with pushing her cash-in. At the moment, she isn’t a threat. By losing by tap-out, she’s going to be overlooked. She won’t be seen as a worthy title winner, so when she eventually cashes in, her victory will come as a shock. Carmella shouldn’t look strong, as the division is small and she has to interact with the majority of the division. So for the moment, her losing is a good thing for all of us.
One downer this week is the fact that the champion doesn’t discuss her upcoming champ vs champ match at Survivor Series. If we’re going to take the match seriously, we need to see both sides do the same. Natalya standing in the middle of the ring with a pointless announcement – with no actual entrance – feels pointless. It just takes up time from the already short match. A simple backstage promo would suffice too. But alas, we have to wait for next week.
The only potential reason that would allow this to make sense, is if Natalya isn’t the one to fight Alexa Bliss. During her celebration, Natalya is seen in the same frame as Charlotte, her latest opponent (as well as the woman challenging her for the title at Starcade). So could we see a switch-up with the champ vs champ match? Well, it would be exciting. But as the likes of Bliss and Flair have had such a similar path yet they have yet to really interact, this needs to be saved for a real feud. Bliss vs Flair would work with weeks of build, rather than a random story that takes place within two weeks. The match may not be the best in the world, but the feud could be legendary. So it would be better if Natalya vs Alexa were to still go on, we just need to see them discuss the match some more.
What do you think of tonight’s events? Did the right person win? Let us know your views in the comments below!