The first 88 percent of Sunday's Florida Championship Wrestling match between former tag partners Richie Steamboat, 6'2", 213#, and Seth Rollins, 6'1", 205#, is rocket hot. (It's finals week, so I am in "statistics mode." Numbers, numbers, numbers.) But I hate the way it ends--one of those "everybody-get-in-the-ring" anticlimaxes that promise raw chaos and wind up only dousing the steadily amassed intensity, a whimper instead of a bang, comparable to my sixth-grade attempts at writing horror fiction, impossibly suspenseful tales I would dully conclude with "And then I woke up!" (The Wizard of Oz has much to answer for.) The match whets my appetite for something monumental--two great looking up-and-comers giving their all, a conflict I might want to see play out to a defining resolution, any resolution so long as it hits the high peak it seems to promise--but then wimps out with this ponderous mess at the end, which typically exists to set up another (often inferior) showdown at a later date. Here in a nutshell is the problem I have with serial angles. Maybe I'm not deep enough for the Tolstoy approach to pro wrestling; I really do prefer the tightly knit Hemingway style of ring story. Rollins and Steamboat have the charisma, grit, and savvy to carry this drama on their shoulders alone--swaying my allegiance at every twist, turning my expectations on end, and giving me everything I need to know about the two players and their motivations in twelve minutes. Instead, I get loud, over-excited muck that makes me feel like I just wasted ten minutes. Had I known, I would have stopped at the 10:45 mark and made up a finish of my own, hopefully nothing involving waking up in Kansas.


  1. Tyler Black Seth Rollins is looking great and KUDOS for not shaving the armpits anymore.

  2. Oh WWE, did you hire Tyler Black so you could keep him in developmental, and keep him as rarely seen as possible?

    Oh, and that's the main reason the book "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz" is better than the movie--there's no question of it being a dream. At the end, Auntie Em is all, "Where the hell you been?"


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