- I originally had no intention of doing a recap this week, due to a few reasons: Work, being under the weather, and exhausted from a long Christmas Day, but I had one of my typical unpredictable changes of heart and decided to go through with it, anyway. Honestly, I was half expecting this to be a Best of 2012 kind of recap show rather than some new material, but to my surprise, I checked the TV listing and it did in fact inform me of something we recappers love to do do... try and make a Battle Royal sound good.
- Taped from Rochester, NY. Don't ask me when, I have no clue. Probably last week, since the usual taping day, tuesday, fell on Christmas, and we all know the tapings for this weeks episodes were done well in advance. Anyway, Michael Cole and the Miz are on commentary this week, which means Miz won't be in the Battle Royal. Such a shame. Also, Antonio Cesaro is on commentary for the Battle Royal, for you see, the winner faces Cesaro next week for the United States Championship. Gotta' love that gimmick. Didn't they do that at Night of Champions, too? Pre-match prediction, without knowing who's in it: Santino or Zack Ryder, since Miz is at the table and R-Truth just lost a bunch of matches.
We come back with a bunch of people teasing being eliminated. I'm shocked Regal is still in this. Barrett tosses an Uso. Dibiase slaps the Million Dollar Dream on Rhodes, but the camera decides to ignore it in favor of panning the ring, where NOTHING ELSE IS HAPPENING. In the meantime, Sandow tosses Regal. Dibiase goes after Rhodes (again). Santino skins the cat to eliminate Epico/Primo, clearing the slate for me to not be confused by their identities anymore. Brodus and Khali do the battle of the out-of-shape big men, with Khali throwing Clay out with very little effort. Clay might as well have just thrown himself out, he did all the work there. Khali does the slap across the chest spot. A lot. To the point it becomes ridiculous. Remember WWF Raw on the X-Box? Repeating spots over and over again would have the crowd turn against you? They need to train fans to do that here. The other Uso gets tossed by Ryder during that last rant.
One more break in the action, and we come back with the PTP playing "scared of the barely mobile Giant." Stuff happens, people tease eliminations... just not a whole lot of actual action worth talking about. Looks like Dibiase was eliminated during the break. Khali tosses O'Neil and Young with ease. Rhodes gets dumped to the apron, and the Hassan-Chop knocks him out. Then Sandow gets tossed to clear the ring of the last of the Tag Team workers, leaving Santino, Khali, Ryder, and Barrett. Santino tosses his new-found friend, then gets tossed out by Barrett during the "nothing personal" interaction, leaving Khali and Barrett... oh God, are you serious? They slug it out, with Barrett gaining the upperhand following a boot to the side of the head. Khali gets back to his feet, does the stupid slap across the chest, and tosses Barrett to the apron. Another Hassan-Chop eliminates Barrett, leaving Khali as the winner at 18:47 (including two breaks). I can honestly say I'm not looking forward to Cesaro vs. Khali. Who knows, maybe we'll see a miracle on television, but Khali isn't physically capable of more than weak punches and "stomps." As usual for Battle Royal's, not much to see, and this had even less than that. Total throw-away match for a show that was probably not on many people's radar this week. On another note, the banter between Miz and Cesaro makes me question why they turned Miz "face"? He's acting like an arrogant prick and gets told off by Cesaro, and we're supposed to BOO Cesaro? He's just standing up for himself and quite politely telling Miz to go fuck himself. Worst, Babyface, Ever.
- Backstage, Matt Striker tries to get a word from Khali, but Cesaro interrupts almost immediately with a belt shot. Khali practically no-sells it and chases Cesaro off, grabs the belt, and then mutters something that would best be described as the Giant Gonzales doing his impression of Andre the Giant, the lazy marble mouth years. I'm so looking forward to next week's episode of Main Event.
- Raw Recap, because no one watched Raw either this week. Santa Claus comes out, gets ran over by Alberto Del Rio, then books a miracle on 34th street fight between ADR and John Cena. Also, The Miz continues being an annoying stupid douch fuck interviewing Kermit the Friggin' Frog. Looks like I didn't miss much this week.
We return from commercial with Gabriel working the arm of McIntyre. Kidd slingshots in with a victory roll for a two count. Kidd with a basement dropkick, and it's Sharpshooter time, but Slater creates a distraction. McIntyre slams Kidd face-first into the canvas as we discuss Jillian Hall of all people. Remember her disgusting mole and "singing" career? Apparently Miz and Cole do. Mahal drops a knee across the chest for a two count, then hooks a front chinlock. Kidd breaks free, but tuns into an elbow. McIntyre drops an elbow of his own across the chest. Kidd with a surprise roll up for two, but he continues taking a beating from the most mismatched team in WWE history. Kidd attempts to fight free of a chinlock, but Mahal slams him down and drops a knee for two. Kidd fends off a double-team attempt, but can't quite make it to his corner. Criss-cross, and a double cross body puts them both down, again. Gabriel with the hot tag, and he quickly comes in with a springboard body press. He charges into the corner and takes McIntyre down with a tornado DDT for a two count. The lionsault misses. No surprise there, it only hits 1 out of 10 times. McIntyre with the running boot, Test style. It only gets two, though. Mahal with a knee to the face for two. Gabriel with a sit-out powerbomb, but McIntyre breaks the cover. Kidd with a boot to the face of McIntyre, followed by a top rope somersault neckbreaker on Mahal for the three count at 11:56 (excluding a commercial break). Solid formula tag team action. Nothing to write home about, nothing to really complain about either. I'm not sure why 3MB is being jobbed out so badly the past two weeks, though. You'd think there would be more balance. Right now they're barely doing better than Epico and Primo.
Final Thoughts: This being Christmas week, I was expecting a throw-away show, and that's exactly what I got. The Battle Royal was pretty bland with little effort into filling the ring with believable winners. Having the Great Khali win to set up a match against Antonio Cesaro screams "what are they thinking", but who knows, maybe Khali is retiring and they want to give him one last "big" match before sending him out to pasture. Decent undercard tag match to close out the show, but overall, you can skip this one once you've read the recap. Next week is surely going to be an interesting show. Cesaro vs. Khali? I still can't wrap my mind around that one.