DMJ Posted December 19, 2019 Report Share Posted December 19, 2019 I am really curious what others thought of this match, so thought I'd share my thoughts. Maybe someone can do one of those nifty play-by-play posts. Here's what I wrote in my blog: Main event time - The Kabuki Warriors defending the Diva Tag Team Championships against Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair in a TLC Match. This one reminded me of the Cactus Jack & Kevin Sullivan/Maxx Payne/Nasty Boys wars of 94', matches that are almost painful to watch because of the level of violence and, even more than that, the shocking number of moments when it seems like the competitors are taking no precaution at all for their opponents' well-being and may actually be "shooting." At various times in this match, its obvious that the adrenaline pumping through all four women is high and they want to pop this crowd with the craziest, nastiest TLC match possible. It was an incredibly valiant effort, but, even before Kairi Sane suffered a concussion (which could've happened at any of ten different moments, but I tend to believe occurred when she seemed to have gotten tripped up by the apron attempting to splash both Lynch and Flair through a table), it seemed like the match was just a non-stop stream of risky moves performed with just a touch too much zeal. In my reviews, I tend to criticize the lack of urgency displayed in many modern matches. This match had urgency, but it was arguably misguided. Even the commentators noted how few attempts there were to actually win the match - everyone was too busy just leveling each other with any weapon they could find. And while Charlotte Flair certainly deserves a ton of criticism for manhandling (and viciously slapping) a clearly out-of-it Kairi Sane towards the end of the match, its important to note that almost immediately after she powerbombed the concussed Sane through a table, Asuka german-suplexed her on the arena floor. Sure, the floor has padding, but that's still a nasty, nasty bump (not to mention getting powerbombed through a table from the ring apron later on). Later, Becky Lynch would get in on the action by hitting a pair of Becksploders on Asuka into a stack of ladders, a move that didn't look all that good, but because Lynch didn't get much elevation and was probably somewhat exhausted after 20 minutes of brutality, could've easily resulted in Asuka getting sliced by the edge of a ladder or worse. By the time the end came, the audience was clearly unsure how to react. Its notable too that, despite the violence, there was no "This is Awesome" chant at any point - which may have been because so much of the match took place on the floor in front of the announce tables and not in the ring, where the live crowd could actually appreciate what the competitors were doing. When considering what to rate a match like this, though, I must admit that there is a part of me that does enjoy the queasy feeling that a match like this will give you. Is there something sickening about those squash matches the Steiners used to have where they took insane liberties and nearly paralyzed guys? Oh yeah...and they're also kinda great. What about the aforementioned Cactus Jack/Nasty Boys matches from 94'? There are moments in those matches where guys are being struck in the back of the head with chairs and shovels without any warning at all. What about the stiffness of Vader and Stan Hansen and the infamous Foley/Rock I Quit Match with the two dozen unprotected chair shots? If one is going to criticize the women for working "unsafely," it's equally wrong to speak highly or fondly of the men who did the same (or worse) in the 80s and 90s. Granted, if you've never popped for this kind of stuff and have always hated it, sure, snub your nose at the rest of us...but I'm willing to admit that matches like this, especially when you're not inundated with them (which we're not), can be thrilling and engaging in a way that highly-choreographed, overly rehearsed spotfests just aren't. This match did not seem rehearsed. It did not seem choreographed. It was wild and dangerous and we saw the real results of real danger. This match was Flair, Lynch, and the Kabuki Warriors showing how unhinged and violent they could get - and I, for one, was impressed and sickened and shocked and bought in to the tension and suspense. For better or worse, one of the few "must see" matches that the WWE produced this year - which is what I think is the best definition of a 4-star-or-higher match. (4/5) Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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