Live from Detroit, Michigan. Our hosts are Michael Cole and Pat McAfee.
The Street Profits bump into Hit Row backstage. They're all about money and smoke, and take off together.
Next is a very special video package looking at the life and times of Drew McIntyre. They showcase his first run as the Chosen One, skip his 3MB (for reasons unknown), and his release. Later, we'll learn all about his redemption.
The show turns black and white as Karrion Kross (with Scarlett) mocks Drew's redemption arc in the balcony.
The Brawling Brutes come to the ring, unfortunately not to announce a stable name change, but for Sheamus to wrestle.
Video package portraying Shayna Baszler as a murderous force of destruction, just as nature intended.
The Brawling Brutes are still in the ring, dressed up like extras from Peaky Blinders. Sheamus puts some disrespect on Gunther's name, which lures out the Intercontinental Champion and Ludvig Kaiser. Kaiser pisses the fans off by acting very European, and the not-at-all European Sheamus mocks him for confusing the fans. Sheamus runs down the list of big names he's defeated and congratulates himself for delivering bangers along the way. Gunther promises to chop Sheamus' chest into bloody bits and break his body. Butch and Kaiser start brawling while Gunther and Sheamus ignore them for a staredown. They hold their guys back without taking their eyes off one another. This was a certainly novel way to build up a match, and sure makes the IC title feel important.
Natalya and Sonya are interviewed about their "opportunistic" victory while Nikki ASH and Doudrop are seen arguing in the background.
Bayley, Dakota Kai, and Iyo Sky come out, presumably to watch (and interfere in) the Women's Tag Team Tournament match.
Sami Zayn pays a visit to the Usos. It appears he's buddy-buddy with Jimmy, but is getting on Jey's nerves. Roman Reigns invites Sami into their room for a word. Roman appreciates Sami for helping him out when he was alone last week. That's something family would do. Roman requests that Sami keep Drew occupied, and Sami is more than happy to oblige.
The Maximum Male Models are unable to enjoy their photoshoot because SOMEONE is playing loud rap music nearby.
Public Service Announcement: a teenager wants to smoke, but Drew McIntyre talks him out of it. "That's a tag team partner for life.""
The Maximum Male Models are armed with spray paint and up to no good.
Kofi Kingston and Professor Xavier (Woods) are in the ring to talk. Xavier admits that they underestimated the Viking Raiders. They saw the Viking funeral last week in which boxes of Booty-O's and other merch were burned, and felt like their legacy was finished. Kofi seems to be teasing a disbandment, but is interrupted by the Viking Raiders in person. The Raiders are offended that the New Day are sniveling after they gave them a proper sendoff. The Raiders are ready to dismantle Kofi, but Xavier pops out of his wheelchair with kendo sticks, and they clear the Vikings from the ring!
The Maximum Male Models have spray painted "Hit Row Sucks" on a tour bus and are pretty pleased with themselves. Hit Row aren't impressed, but don't care because it's not even their bus. The Street Profits exit the bus and everyone scatters. I've enjoyed enough of the show tonight that this doesn't annoy me too much.
The Usos visit Sami, and Jey brings his mood down by demanding he handle his business in the ring.
Video package highlighting the redemption of Drew McIntyre. They retcon history to make it look like he returned as a babyface hero at Wrestlemania 35, and then I get chills as they show footage of him as WWE Champion in the Thunderdome. Drew promises to complete his destiny when he kicks Roman's f'n head off at Clash at the Castle.
Roman Reigns ambushes Drew from behind and gets booed for his sneak attack. Drew reverses a throw into the ring post, but the Usos jump him. Roman takes advantage and hits Drew with a spear. The Usos unload chair shots on poor Drew and this gets the right reaction from the fans (I don't *think* the heat is piped in, but who really knows). Sami helps with a Helluva Kick against the barricade and the Usos use the ring steps as a battering ram for the exclamation mark. It's too bad that Drew has no friends to save him, as Roman puts him into a guillotine choke and sits on top of him with his championships.
Final Thoughts: Last week's Smackdown was watchable, this week's episode was… really good. I know, I'm shocked too. There is a lot of good stuff happening here. Roman vs. Drew is an appealing main event. There are tag team feuds happening without the tag titles. The non-main event divisions are getting featured and the talent are getting mic time and character development beyond just walking to the ring with smiles on their faces. Lots of matches are being built up for the pay-per-view. This is a functional, entertaining wrestling show, that isn't doing anything groundbreaking other than just following a good, simple formula. I legitimately enjoyed myself tonight, Thumbs Up.
Comment about this article on Da' Wrestling Boards!