Friday, October 22, 2021

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NXT Redux (March 15, 2017): The road to TakeOver is littered with carnage

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Welcome to this week’s NXT Redux! After disappearing from the title scene, Nikki Cross is featured on this week’s episode. She’s been wrapped up with her team of anarchists as they completely trash the midcard.

On this week’s episode she’s sending a clear message to the women’s division that no one is safe, no man or woman. Before we get to our match, however, we join Asuka by the pool as she lounges while recapping her own path of devastation through the women’s division. 

She says the moon never shines brighter than the sun and the sun is Asuka. The video package that follows highlights Asuka’s godlike dominance. Asuka says there is no women’s revolution, there is only Asuka. She says she runs the division and Ember Moon‘s fate will be like all the others.

After the package airs it’s time for our women’s contest of the night as Nikki takes on Macey Estrella, formally going by the name of Macey Evans. Let’s watch:

As Macey makes her entrance commentary introduces us to her and fills in her background, honing in on her former military experience, saying no one should mess with her.

Nikki makes her signature entrance accompanied by Sanity. Nikki thrashes her coat around before going after Macey with hard punches. She tosses Macey across the ring. Macey comes back with a punch to the throat. Nikki, enraged, flies back at Macey. She takes her down with a swinging neckbreaker. She picks her up for another as Sanity eggs her on. She picks up Macey again and continues to plant her with neckbreakers.

Nikki picks her up again and plants Macey with a final neckbreaker to end the match. After the bout No Way Jose and Tye Dillinger run in for a beatdown on Sanity. But Jose and Tye are easily dispatched by Sanity.

Thoughts: This seemed like another blink and you’ll miss the action episode. But let’s start out with the positives.The overall theme of this episode is carnage. It’s relayed well with Asuka’s segment and with Nikki blatantly trying to decimate Macey.

I enjoyed the video package highlighting Asuka. Since there’s no interaction between Ember or Asuka leading up to TakeOver according to spoilers, NXT must build this contest with backstage vignettes.

This is exactly what I’ve been asking for every week and what NXT needs to do more of. It helps build angles and effectively introduce us to new women that we should be rooting for or against. Ember vs Asuka is a monumental bout in NXT since they are both undefeated. It should be getting more special treatment. I’m encouraged to see this.

My hope is that next week we have a backstage segment further fleshing out Ember. I’m all for mysterious characters but, Ember has no background outside of being a fantastic wrestler. She desperately needs character development.

Now onto the negative, I’m tired of these short matches that almost do nothing for the wrestlers involved. This match does showcase how much of a maniac Nikki is but, we already know this. What’s the different takeaway here? Obviously No Way Jose and Tye are going to recruit a female to help them take on Sanity since intergender wrestling is a no-no here but, I was really so much more interested in Nikki’s frantic seemingly short lived obsession with Asuka. WWE is truly missing out on something special by cutting Nikki out of the title picture completely.

Onto Macey, she did well for someone that basically couldn’t get any offense in, she sold beautifully, and her punch to the throat looked hard. I’m intrigued by her bad ass pinup army gimmick and I see a bright future for her. I really want to see the other girls, like Daria Berenato, Mandy, and the others just waiting at the PC, square off to further build the division. Why is it so difficult for creative to focus on multiple women’s segments when these matches are less than 10 minutes?

Also, why no more mention of the Icons? No follow up to Billie Kay‘s minor injury or Peyton Royce‘s campaign to ban the Eclipse? Where’s the continuity?

My overall weekly complaints remain the same, NXT needs to step up its writing. Asuka is right, there is no Women’s Revolution, there is only Asuka since creative completely forgot how to build anyone else.

What did you think of this week’s episode? Sound off in the comments below.

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