WWE Evolution, the first all-women pay-per-view, was a huge success with plenty of dream matchups, a Battle Royal featuring some of today’s WWE women Superstars and legends, and championship matches galore. To continue with the revolution, at Survivor Series, the Thanksgiving weekend tradition since 1987, two of the best women wrestlers WWE has to offer will go head-to-head. Becky Lynch vs. Ronda Rousey.
The similarities end there.
At Evolution, the Last Woman Standing match between Becky Lynch and Charlotte stole the show. The Ronda Rousey and Nikki Bella confrontation didn’t quite measure up to the emotion and intensity of that match. Usually when Raw is lackluster compared to SmackDown when it comes to women’s championship storylines, it’s based on who is more dominant than the other. It turns out, many factors played a big role in SmackDown‘s women’s title picture.
One of the major factors was months of build-up. While Raw built their momentum of Ronda Rousey’s arrival in a matter of months, the Becky/Charlotte storyline was nearly a year in the making. While Raw decided to build their division around Ronda, the plan for Becky to be a heel in her rivalry with Charlotte on SmackDown was coming together quickly and causing a fan-made storm.
Despite the Lass Kicker turning heel, fans still cheer for her. They cheer for Becky despite her heel persona, because they sympathize with her about being “the woman scorned” and having Charlotte steal her spotlight. Ever since Ronda Rousey won the Raw Women’s Championship at SummerSlam back in August, the Raw title picture and who to cheer for has been murky, at best. It’s clear to see why SmackDown won the fans over.
Another factor is simply the quality of storylines. While the Charlotte/Becky Lynch rivalry helped SmackDown sail past the flagship, the Raw women’s division is treading water. With Ronda as the champ on Raw, the list of challengers are thin, and her most recent feud with Nikki Bella is unbelievable and filled with bad promos. Meanwhile, Becky has been on a streak with wicked promos that add plot twists to storylines, and follows up with good matches. See: Last Woman Standing match.
Character development also helped SmackDown gain the upper hand over their rival brand. Ronda is reminiscent of Bill Goldberg during his WCW run. She has the tools to be great, considering her MMA career, but she feels out of her element so early in her WWE career. Her promos are like her post-match interviews. Becky, on social media, has utilized her heel persona to the highest extent. Becky’s character development is right where it needs to be, her brand of brashness is incredibly appealing to fans. Becky’s current character mirrors Ivory when she held the WWE Women’s Championship in 1999; when she was full of confidence and aggression to go with her strong character development.
Championship value helps add more reason to Becky’s cause. Her matches with Charlotte have gotten people’s attention, and it added some much-needed value for the SmackDown Women’s Championship. Making Becky the stronger champion helps the title gain some relevancy and adds value to the championship after months of stale defenses. The Raw Women’s Championship held by Ronda makes the belt relevant in its own right, but the competition is substandard. The belt makes the woman, or “The Man,” as Becky calls herself nowadays; and so far SmackDown has that in spades.
As the women’s revolution in WWE continues to heat up, look for better storylines and better character development on both brands. It’s tough to top a match that captivated audiences and set records, and the Evolution main event just couldn’t pull it off. SmackDown kept their Women’s Championship storylines spicy, while Raw went bland. At Survivor Series, it’s all about who is the superior champion.
Survivor Series airs Nov. 18 at the STAPLES Center in Los Angeles.
Which brand has the better Women’s Championship storyline?