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It’s a new year, and along with that we’ve got a whole dose of new Diva action. With newfound friendships going back to square one, combined with a career turn for one of our veterans, this episode is definitely one you don’t want to miss! But in case you did, here’s the lowdown of what happened!
Now, since this is a new year, I thought we’d switch things up a bit with how the reviews for this show work out. Each segment of the show will be sectioned based on the women involved. So if you’re only here to see what the hell Paige got up to, or you want the lowdown of what the Bella Twins are fighting about this week, you can scroll to their sub-heading and enjoy!
Paige and Eva Marie
Towards the start of the episode we see Paige pop out on Monday Night RAW, for what is for the first time in months – though in reality this isn’t true, but we’ll go with it. She’s having a great time and tells us just how happy she is to be back on the road. That is, until she gets knocked to the ground and feels a pop in her shoulder. The Brit powers through the match but the pain is still there. Afterwards, she heads to the Doctor with her boyfriend Alberto Del Rio, though we don’t receive an update from this. Side note: we also see her showing off her tattoo of Del Rio’s name. Yeah, this woman really is in love, and I may be in the minority here but it’s kinda cute.
Later on, as there’s a live event in San Antonio – where Paige currently resides – All Red Everything hitches a ride with her former enemy. A quick flashback to their fight in season four and their make-up in season five is shown and then the two head for the venue. This is a cute little scene where the two have a bit of banter, and with their newfound friendship, Paige confides in Eva about her injury. And although she’s very honest, she’s adamant that she doesn’t want anyone to know – especially anyone at WWE. The former Divas champion says that the company is extremely strict about injuries, and with her recent return to the ring, she doesn’t want to be sidelined already. With this in mind, Marie still wants to aid her friend through her pain. So, as a way to help mend the pain, the Red Queen pops to the store to purchase a basic neck brace, hoping that it’ll aid the Brit a little. And although it pretty much does nothing to help her, the two laugh it off and drive away.
And then things take a turn for the worse.
The next day, Paige arrives at work and the devil himself Mark Carrano confronts her, asking her about her current state. Paige, clearly suspicious, smiles and pretends to be fine. But, an intrigued Carrano continues to question her, and tells her that he wouldn’t be asking if he knew something was wrong. Before the conversation can take a bitter twist, it ends, but with Paige under the heavy WWE spotlight, her blood boils, and she knows exactly who caused this.
Spotting her backstage, Paige rushes up to Eva, calling her a “piece of s***” for telling Carrano, amongst other things. A dumbfounded Eva sits down and hardly responds, but a confused Natalya jumps to her defense. The Queen of Harts tells Paige that even she was speaking about it, because she didn’t know it was a secret – because when you walk backstage like a literal robot, people are going to ask questions. Neidhart reveals that she spoke to Carrano out of fear that Paige may be hurt, and thus giving the Brit another victim for her lashes. And with this, Paige walks away, but Eva is fortunately not phased.
Oh, Natalya. The most adorable, sweet and kind human to ever grace our television screens. This week, the Queen of Harts is dealing with one of her toughest challenges yet. With talk of the WWE draft flowing through the locker room, in which SmackDown and RAW will have two different rosters of performers, production workers, writers and more, nerves are filing up backstage. The ladies aren’t being told anything, so on top of the upcoming unknown on their backs, Natalya has something else troubling her.
Carrano takes the former Divas champion backstage and says that during the upcoming pay-per-view, Money In The Bank, she’ll be turning into a bad guy by attacking her partner Becky Lynch. And this is where things get interesting.
Natalya has spent almost her entire time in WWE as a good guy. She’s been gaining more and more fan support as time goes on, so this will be difficult for her. The Hart family member’s job has now gone from getting the fans to cheer for her to getting them to boo her. So this is bound to be challenging.
The match is up next and the crowd are behind it throughout. And after Natalya gets pinned after Lynch is thrown into her, the time arrives… When Becky is looking away, the Queen of Harts transitions into the Queen of Black Harts by knocking her friend and beating her down. Unfortunately for Neidhart, the fans aren’t booing her. Instead, they’re cheering for her! Bummer. Nattie takes to the confessionals and to her friends to discuss the situation, and it looks as though her job may be just as hard as expected.
The next night on Monday Night RAW Neidhart has another shot at convincing the fans during a backstage segment. But after a brutal beatdown of Lynch, things still aren’t looking up. Instead, they look even worse as the fans aren’t reacting whatsoever. And that is the literal worst thing to get as a wrestler. Yikes.
Nattie spends a short while worrying to the likes of Renee Young and Paige, who give her kind words of advice. However, she is still concerned about her career. She even asks Carrano if she can work with Eva so that she can gain some heat from her – to which Mark instantly says no. She even contemplates dying her hair black – which receives from everyone including herself.
The Hart Dungeon graduate continues to worry herself further as she believes that if the storyline fails then she will be fired. A bit of an exaggeration, but it’s why we love her, right?
Natalya’s next chance at redemption arrives on SmackDown, and this is quite possibly her last opportunity to get the crowd behind her. During Becky Lynch’s entrance, the crowd are cheering the Lass Kicker on as she makes her way to the ring. And, out of nowhere, an aggressive Natalya beats her to the ground, implementing constant moves. A defenseless Lynch lays on the ground, and the crowd are booing Natalya! HOORAY!
Natalya walks backstages and boasts about her crowd reaction, and Renee is more than happy to celebrate with her. Finally, Natalya is a legitimate heel, and she couldn’t be happier about it!
Nikki and Brie Bella
The Bella Twins spend the episode at Napa, where they intend to just relax and take advantage of their time off. Brie insists that the two should not bring up business, but an aspirational and on-to-go Nikki is against this. Though initially she agrees to just relax. We all know where this is headed…
Whilst the two are enjoying the sun, the topic of wine is brought up – by Nikki of course. She sees Napa as a perfect opportunity to discuss a Bella wine company. Brie, a little suspicious of it, goes on with the plan.
The duo then speak to a pair of guys that allow them to be wine makers for the day. They end up doing a lot of work and it proves to be more than just a “side” company. However, with her passion and heart, Nikki pulls through and enjoys herself.
Later on in the day, the girls are relaxing and discussing the wine company idea. Brie causes some friction as she claims that the only reason Nikki wants to do this extra business is because she wants to compete with her boyfriend John Cena, whom is an extremely successful man in his own right. Nikki then says that she’ll be even more successful than the 15x WWE champion, which Brie practically scoffs at. So of course, this makes Nikki storm out in anger.
The retiree then explains the situation to Daniel Bryan over the phone. Unfortunately for her, he is on Nikki’s side. He explains that there’s no issue with Nikki wanting to outdo her boyfriend and that Brie should apologize. And in typical Bella fashion the two make up and all is good in the world of Bella!
Thoughts: This is a really cute episode. From Eva actually being enjoyable to the Bellas’ adorable story, there’s not a lot to complain about.
For the first in the show’s history, the most entertaining member of the show is Eva. She doesn’t come across as dull or as if she’s a deer in headlights (except for one moment). Instead, she’s actually pretty funny and shows off her personality. This is the kind of Eva I want to see. She has the drama, but instead of portraying a persona that isn’t hers, she’s actually being herself. The funny, loving and somewhat intriguing Eva is the one we need to see more of.
The issue with Paige is also one of the best parts. I live for the drama she serves and the show would be missing a lot without it. This is just an indication on what’s to come, but I can’t tell if I’m excited about it or not. Between the fight with Eva – which is amazing – to the tattoo of Del Rio’s name, I’m not sure what this season will showcase… From the looks of things, the woman is happy, and that’s what I love. But is this going to last? This season so far has been too happy for the woman, and it seems as though she’s going to go through a spiral decline in the upcoming weeks. I truly live for the drama of the Divas, but Paige’s one seems like it may be a little more serious than the usual kind. So I’m not sure what to say about that…
And on the topic of the best parts of the show – Nattie Neidhart! What an adorable woman she is! That scene where she boasts about getting booed is probably the most ironically cute scenes I have ever seen. I’m not supposed to love you, Nattie, but you make it so hard not to want to take a picture with all of my merch and show you how much I appreciate you.
Nattie’s scenes this week are so cute, and it’s so nice to see that instead of making her just worry about her career, she’s actually doing something about it. Typically we see the woman cry and allow other ladies to progress further than her. But not this time! This time round Nattie is really taking ahold of things and truly owned it! Personally, I love her heel gimmick. Between her awkward humor and aggressive nature, this lady definitely has it on lock.
Now onto the Bellas.
Although this is a super predictable storyline for them, it still feels somewhat refreshing. What makes me appreciate it is the fact that it’s not some overdramatic fight scene where the pair act as if their relationship is damaged forever. Instead, Brie quickly admits that she is in the wrong and they’re back to being the cute besties we know them as. No pointless drama, just normal sibling issues that are resolved in an entertaining way. I love it!
How did you find this week’s episode? Are you excited for next week? Who was your favourite tonight? Let us know your views in the comments below!