Solstice Scriptures: #108: Perceived/Literal Truth Wrestlemania 21 Preview
Wrestlemania is Hollywood. It is full of the bright lights, glamour and um, wrestling that we normally associate with Hollywood. Hollywood has been home to classics such as Suburban Commando and Santa with Muscles and stars Dustin Diamond Clint Howard. This was the past and now is the future and the future of the cinematic world has been turned on its ear because Wrestlemania has come in with more sophistication than Katherine Hepburn and smoother than Cary Grant. We are here this month like we are every other month for one reason and one reason only. To try and take over the world! Actually, we aren’t but we could with trying to take over Hollywood.
Once again readers scratch their head at this intro and begin to wonder who is crazier; themselves for reading this or the writer that took dressed up like Russell Crowe in Gladiator because he wanted to know how comfortable it would be to wear metal. Let?s just say it chafes in places where one didn’t know there were places. This is Perceived/Literal Truth where everything and nothing come together in hopes to be interesting and fun. Ah, see fun is coming into play much like the intent of this pay per view.
Wrestlemania is here and what we can expect is to see a number of matches that are not all that bad on paper. It will bring the good, the bad, the mediocre, and the sunshine and joy that wrestling in the WWE has to offer with a dose of sugar to make the medicine go down. So do you want the truth? Well, you can’t handle the truth! That?s original the last time I used it some Cruise guy stole it and put in some movie he was in. If he shows up remind me there is going to be some damage between he and I, Collateral Damage.
So when you think of Wrestlemania what is the first thing that comes to mind? Wrestling gods beating each other in togas? Or is it classic wrestling matches that usually involve Pete Rose? No, then good because we were starting to get worried here with what could have been pleasing you this weekend.
Perceived Truth – is what I covet, crave, die over, have ambition, hunger, incline toward, itch for, leech for, long, lust, need, pine, prefer, require, spoil for, thirst, wish, and yearn for during a particular match.
Perceived Winner – is who I covet, crave, die over, have ambition for, hunger, incline toward, itch for, leech for, long, lust, need, pine, prefer, require, spoil for, thirst, wish and yearn for winning in any particular match.
Literal Truth – is what I anticipate, assume, await, bargain for, bargain on, believe, calculate, contemplate, count on, divine, envisage, feel, figure, forecast, foresee, gather, hope, hope for, imagine, look for, predict, presume, presuppose, reckon, see coming, sense, suppose, surmise, suspect, take, think, trust, understand, wait for, watch for. This section is based on the facts that lead into a different opinion.
Literal Winner – is who I believe will win, anticipate to win, assume will win, await to win, bargain for winning, bargain on winning, believe will win, count on winning, envisage winning, foresee winning, look for to win, predict will win, presume will win, sense will win, suppose will win, suspect, take, think, trust will win, understand will win, wait for, watch for winning.
Rey Mysterio vs. Eddie Guerrero
Perceived Truth: This is thee feud that had no losers. If a feud was ever given a title that was reflective of the participants which were a part of it, this would be it. Rey Mysterio and Eddie Guerrero have proven time and time again that they are capable of putting on wrestling matches that resemble that of a clinic. These two veteran wrestlers know each other as well as if not greater then themselves. When hints were being dropped over the past few weeks that such a match could be on the horizon one had to wonder ?who would act as the heel among these two?. It had been all but a foregone conclusion that Eddie would have taken on that role, but ultimately for what purpose?
He has been over as a face for some time those to attempt to make him even appear as a heel would be more difficult to achieve then to even build this feud. As Wrestlemania approaches there is no jealousy or animosity among the two. When Wrestlemania ends I doubt there will be any vindictive behavior on the part of the loser. Although because the consequences of a feud have the opportunity of being a new beginning I would like to see Mysterio win. Have it so that Eddie leaves the ring displeased with the idea that Rey is ?better? than him. This would result in Eddie completely losing control and Chavo watching from a distance proud of the seed that he planted in his uncle?s head.
Perceived Winner: Rey Mysterio
Literal Truth: The idea of this match has been toyed with for some time. Over the past few weeks leading up to Wrestlemania both Rey and Eddie have had someone trying to plant seeds of dissention among the two. Chavo Guerrero has repeatedly approached either Rey, Eddie and sometimes both men at the same time and has said hit them from all different directions about how one guy is only teaming with the other because he can’t beat them, or how one guy is holding the other back. On the March 17th episode of Smackdown it appeared as though this was the last straw that led to a match between Eddie and Rey being decided. The most notable event coming out of this entire match is that there does not appear to be a heel turn by either man leading up to Wrestlemania.
The frustration that has been felt has been more because of meddling on the part of Eddie?s nephew Chavo. This is not like any of the recent feuds that have seen one wrestler completely lose their faith or trust in their partner. The wrestlers have mutual respect for each other going into the match. What I anticipate to happen is there will be time in this match where the gloves will metaphorically come off. A time where both men will truly battle to determine who is the better athlete. In the weeks prior to Eddie and Rey teaming together, they faced each other a number of times and the result of these matches saw Rey victorious in them. This time however may very well be Eddie?s time to shine and he will have that time on the grandest stage of them all.
Literal Winner: Eddie Guerrero
Akebono vs. The Big Show
Perceived Truth: It is difficult for a feud to have a solid enough build when one of the competitors has had little chance to build a case for himself. For all of Akebono?s achievements in Japan it has done little to impress the North American audience who has yet to understand what he means to the Japanese audience. The majority of his build has been attributed to the Big Show. Show shows his opponent nothing but respect which is fine but what is his motivation in this match? If he loses he is losing in a sumo match something that he is not accustomed to anyways.
If anything Akebono has more to lose in this match in comparison because if he leaves with anything but a win it could be seen as a disappointment because he is a legend in the sport of sumo. This would be the equivalent of a boxer competing in a wrestling match. They both involve technique but their unfamiliarity to the sport makes room for more error then it does for anything positive to come from this. Since he has remained focused and been the more active of the two in this feud and because his height and leverage will prove to be an advantage over his opponent I am pulling for the Big Show.
Perceived Winner: The Big Show
Literal Truth: If this match appears to be an after thought it should, the booking of it reflects that. For those that are not away how this match first came about need to look back a few weeks to when Smackdown took place in Japan. At the time the Big Show welcomed Akebono who was sitting at ringside to come into the ring. As the Big Show welcomed the former sumo grand champion into the ring the two took part in a stare down. At the time who would have thought a stare down would lead to a match up almost two months later. It did and here we are only a few days before Wrestlemania to see two men that combined are close to one ton in weight face each other in a contest that encompasses what the Hollywood and sports entertainment element of professional wrestling is about.
One theory is over the past few months in preparation for their match Akebono has been training and adjusting himself to western ring culture. Even though the match is still slated to be a sumo wrestling match this is not to say a professional wrestling match would not take place. One only has to look at Wrestlemania II when Roddy Piper and Mr. T?s ?Boxing match? ended when the Scotsman bodyslammed Mr. T in frustration. On the March 31st edition of Smackdown, Akebono and the Big Show once again faced each other in a stare down. I anticipate a victory for the Big Show with a strong showing by Akebono.
Literal Winner: The Big Show
Christy Hemme vs. Trish Stratus
Perceived Truth: Ever win the lottery? We aren’t talking about winning a ticket or even $10 dollars. We are talking winning hundreds of thousands of dollars. The chances of that happening are slim aren’t they? Now take that chance spread it over hundreds of women across the United States and then narrow it down to ten. We then take one woman from that ten and award one of them a $250,000 contract and then subsequently within in a few short months defeat no one and beat no one and compete for the Women?s championship at the biggest pay per view event of the year. What we have is Christy Hemme. She has personality but its that personality is so magnetic you want to photograph her? Possibly catch a t-shirt thrown to the crowd from her?
She has energy and enthusiasm but she is not a wrestler. She would probably be the first to tell you ‘like you know, I’m not a wrestler?. It almost appears as though there is a running joke about her that she is willing part takes in without knowing she is even a part of them. Her theme music is ?walk idiot walk? and she has a recurring add on Canadian television for stupid.ca. It is a valid cause but it is a little coincidental that she is talking what is and what isn’t stupid, don’t you think? She is probably a nice person and has a lot of really happy things to talk about but, I’m pulling for Trish because she has earned her title and has the bruises to prove it.
Perceived Winner: Trish Stratus
Literal Truth: This appears to be something that would be on the cover of Teenbeat magazine the on a Wrestlemania card. Each and every time these two are in the ring together the feud resembles a catfight between Christie ?Lindsey Lohan? Hemme and Trish ?Hilary Duff? Stratus. As of yet there have been no announced breakups between the women and any male suitors but this does not mean that someone may very well be vying for the attention of someone down the road. Trish has continued to bring up the fact that any of the divas that come out and bring attention to themselves does a disservice to her.
They are stealing her spotlight. In this case the spotlight was taken by someone that posed for Playboy and is pitted against ironically enough someone that many would like to see in Playboy. The feud has developed with the help of outside reinforcement. One on one Christy would never be able to keep up with Trish. This is where Lita becomes a part of this feud. It may very well be that Lita was very well supposed to be involved in this feud but her role as coach will more then likely be a good enough reason for her to capture the title away from Trish. To award someone who hasn’t earned it may not be the way to go with this feud.
Literal Winner: Trish Stratus
?Money in the Bank Six Way Ladder Match
Chris Benoit vs. Christian vs. Shelton Benjamin vs. Chris Jericho vs. Edge vs. Kane
Perceived Truth: In the course of a few short weeks the lines have clearly been drawn. There has only been talk amongst Benjamin, Jericho and Benoit of what they will do in order to win their match on Sunday April 3rd. We have yet to truly get the sense that they are out for themselves. Through all their talk they have been there to support each other if Edge or Christian provokes a fight with them. On the other hand Edge and Christian are as quick to push each other and get in the other one?s face in the event of a miscue during a match up. It has even odder to see that Tyson Tomko has been more of an active participant in this match up then one of the booked competitors.
Although one can understand that Kane has been basically double booked both through this feud and through the Triple H and Batista feud it still appears as though they are spreading themselves thin. As for who I’d like to win it has to be Edge. His push has been consistent and as each week passes he is consistently challenging in each and every match. He is creates just as much of a scene when he wins as he does when he loses. In fact when he loses it is much more enjoyable. I hope his push doesn’t end anytime soon because he has certainly made the most of his opportunity.
Perceived Winner: Edge
Literal Truth: The announcement of this match on the March 7th episode of Raw became a block buster of an announcement. Of all the men mentioned there is not one many among them that has not held a title in the company at any point. All involved have either feuded with or competed against the World heavyweight champion with Christian being the only exception. As the announcement came down from Chris Jericho?s vision, as good as many of the men are it is hard for me to see anyone other then Edge coming out of this match victorious. His journey to be the world champion has been months in the making and it appears that this match would truly signify that.
Some believe that Edge winning this match fits his character, where as I am of the belief it fits into the context of his push to have him win this match. Whether he wins the match clean or not, fans are pretty assured that he will give it his all during this match. One of the rumors about this match had circulated was that Kane?s spot in the six man ladder match was originally slated for Matt Hardy. Due to some circumstances out of the bookers? control, revisions had to be made to this match up for Mania. I am of the belief that this match will have all the drama and excitement that any ladder match tends to have only six times more the energy.
Literal Winner: Edge
Legend vs Legend Killer
The Undertaker vs. Randy Orton
Perceived Truth: In order to be someone you need to beat someone. This is what Randy Orton?s thought process has been over the past few weeks. He says won’t allow himself to be afraid and he needs to do this in order to make an impact. What he doesn’t realize is that he is leaving himself out there like a lamb to slaughter. Many jeered at even the announcement of this feud because a number of things about it bothered them. Fans were clamoring for him to turn heel and to return to the status that he had become so accustomed to when he beat the who?s who since earning the moniker of ?Legend killer?. The collective number of Undertaker neigh says believe that Orton seemed as though he would have better suited to battle someone that would have given him a legitimate chance.
Randy Orton walks into Wrestlemania as the underdog. He has little to no chance at winning but this appears to be exactly what the character wants to have happen. For every time he appears frightened he could be simply ?playing the part?. When push comes to shove I believe he will do anything but allow himself to be walked on and walked over. Orton has an uphill battle but I anticipate Randy winning with a little help from a familiar face from the Undertaker?s past.
Perceived Winner: Randy Orton
Literal Truth: This match almost since its initial announcement has had the fans help to dictate the direction they would like to see this feud would turn. When Randy Orton first made his challenge to the Undertaker in a match at Wrestlemania the chorus of boos that were heard in the arena drowned out the cheers for the match up. Fans did not want to have to see Orton, the face continue to bow and curtsey at every opponent and every former WWE superstar. It grew tiresome for many who were enamored with the cocker and confident third generation wrestler. When the official contract signing took place and Taker was slapped in the face prior to this Orton wanted to make it clear that he ?had nothing but respect for the Undertaker and his legacy?.
It was important that in order to make an impact, the character needs to convince you and have you trust him and inexplicably break that trust with both you and his opponent in a heart beat. The following Monday on Raw, Orton brought Stacey Keibler to the ring and wanted to send the Undertaker a message. The message is if things don’t go well on your Valentine?s day date hold a grudge, pretend to enjoy their company and then RKO her because she ordered a salad on your date. Either that or use it to send him a message. One way or the other someone felt the message. Unfortunately, on the greatest stage of them all the Undertaker will more then likely not relinquish his undefeated streak to Orton.
Literal Winner: The Undertaker
Kurt Angle vs. Shawn Michaels
Perceived Truth: This match has all the makes of supporting a person with a sweet tooth with a special induced sugar rush of wrestling pleasure. Both Michaels and Angle manage to go back and forth week in and week out promising the other man what they are prepared to do at Wrestlemania. There is one thing that Michaels does say something to the effect of quite often is regardless of the outcome the match will be an absolute show. Throughout the years I could never say I was a fan of either man, but there has never been a time when no one could not appreciate and respect the effort they put forth every time they stepped into the ring. In the case of Angle we have a man that has achieved everything Michaels has done and more.
In Michaels case he has done everything Angle has done with the exception of winning gold medals only longer. It is funny how the comparison of each man?s ability represents something to different fans. There was recently a poll in our forums that spoke about ?Who?s your God: Kurt or Shawn?? The results are pretty close (as of March 28th, Shawn led 58 ? 51) If this was a basketball game that would be the half time score and seeing as both of these men can compete in a wrestling match in upwards of an hour one wonders how closely they will be in a match against one another. At this point I want Shawn to win but even if he doesn’t win no one truly goes home a loser on this night.
Perceived Winner: Shawn Michaels
Literal Truth: Since the beginning of 2005 speculation had run rampant of a match between Angle and Michaels. As soon as their two paths crossed at the Royal Rumble the speculation quickly became a reality. The visual of Michaels bleeding and crying in pain as Angle had the anklelock locked in as he lay over the steel steps it was only a matter of time before a challenge between the two would be made. Angle was quick to brag about his accomplishment which only further fueled speculation that the two would eventually meet. After Angle lost to John Cena at No Way Out, Michaels approached Teddy Long with a challenge to Kurt Angle to face him at Wrestlemania. That challenge was met with a not so friendly response on the part of Kurt Angle.
When he was asked about the challenge initially was met with anger and frustrated Angle dropping the microphone in the ring and storming out. The following week on Raw however Angle answered Michaels challenge with an emphatic beat down. As the bloodied and beaten Michaels lay in the ring Angle answered by accepting the challenge. Of the matches these men have had with other men, none of which have had the ‘dream match? mentality as they did here. It has been a year since Michaels faced Benoit and Triple H at Wrestlemania but this match has nothing to do with titles. This match will be all about bragging rights. What I would like to see happen in this match is for it to literally go on forever if possible. In order for fans of these two men to go home happy with the result, it is only fair to give this match the time that the build has had. If this is Angle?s last match it would only be fitting to see him go out on top.
Literal Winner: Kurt Angle
John Bradshaw Leyfield vs. John Cena
Perceived Truth: Ever since No Way Out the WWE championship match at Wrestlemania has been determined. It has been over a month where we have seen the challenger continue to face more of an uphill climb then the champion. Although he initially one upped the champion by crashing his evening of excellence he has been put in his place more times then not. When it appeared as though Cena was going to retain his United States championship against Orlando Jordan because JBL and the remaining members of the cabinet were leaving the building it was all for not. Cena lost the title because of outside interference.
It was a whole different side of Cena that fans saw the week after losing the title. He was ready to take out the entire cabinet and it didn’t matter who stood in his way. So if the General Manager was going to be part of the problem then he was going to be among the men who Cena was going to take out of the equation. The most recent appearances of Cena have shown glimpses of the heel character that so quickly rose to prominence. I would like to see him continue in the win at all costs scenario by the time Wrestlemania rolls around. At this moment, to have Cena come as close to hitting him a few times after the bell rings and when he does connect hit him relentlessly.
Perceived Winner: John Cena
Literal Truth: The week following No Way Out saw JBL address having to face John Cena at Wrestlemania. In doing so the battle lines were quickly being drawn between champion and challenger. After crashing in on JBL?s evening of excellence, Cena made it known that he will capture the title at Wrestlemania. The problem however is that Cena faced up hill odds almost right from the start. He was not only having to deal with the champion but fellow cabinet members the Basham Brothers and Orlando Jordan. On he March 3rd, 2005 episode, Cena took on Orlando Jordan for the United States title. The match could have easily been a cake walk for Cena. One on one there is nothing that leads the fans to believe that Cena couldn’t go over Jordan.
The problem was although Jordan is a good enough athlete he is being trust in a position where he isn’t as convincing enough as a heel to warrant going over Cena. Regardless, the result of the match saw Cena put over Jordan and OJ walk away with the United States title. The week later we see a sign of Cena that we never do. He comes out with fire and anger in his eyes looking to get a piece of JBL and his cabinet. It did not matter at what expense he was going to do whatever it took to get his hands on them. What I believe will happen is Cena will walk away with the World title to further the push he is expected to receive this year.
Literal Winner: John Cena
Triple H vs. Batista
Perceived Truth: They say it all about the game and how you play it. In the case of Dave Batista he had no problem playing the game. The most notable fact of this entire feud is through it all he always was left standing. Batista was double teamed and came out on top. He defeated Ric Flair even when Triple H attempted to prevent him from winning. He overcame having to face Kane in a pick your poison lumberjack match and even overcame Triple H in a?conversation? So it wasn’t the best culmination the week before a feud.
What it did do was give Batista the opportunity to put his smooth and clear mic skills a chance to be heard. There were a number of times throughout this feud where Batista had the crowd eating out of his hands. He could do no wrong even up until when he said ?Are you talking to me?? towards the end of his in ring confrontation with Triple H the crowd was snap, cracking and popping louder then a box of Rice Krispies. If I continue to follow the treasure map that the booking has designed from this point to Wrestlemania it looks as though, with glee that he is coming out on top.
Perceived Winner: Batista
Literal Truth: Since New Year?s Revolution the time had been set for the bomb between these two to go off. It was initially being promoted by Triple H as ?father? versus ?son? but that was further from the truth. These two have been on a collision course to face each other for some time now and the writer?s led the fans along teasing as to whether or not Batista would stay with Raw for some time now. It was not until Triple H fully admitted to being the one responsible for having JBL and Big Show videos from Smackdown along with having a white stretch limousine nearly run over Batista. Batista was more then capable of handling his own business without the help of Flair or Triple H.
When Batista decided to stay with Raw he did so in the unceremonious thumbs down fashion that resembles Evolutions outing of Randy Orton only months earlier. The sign of the initial thumbs up to thumbs down drew a look of shock on the face of Triple H. He was shocked, stunned and concerned all at once. He could brag all he wanted about how he has clearly beaten them all and act confident when discussing the prospect of facing Batista but fans are given a completely different side of the champion when the two stand face to face with each other. At this time I do not see Triple H relinquishing the title simply because he did so on the previous years Wrestlemania and the probability of him doing so on the most prominent pay per view of the year is somewhat unlikely.
Literal Winner: Triple H
Wrestlemania is tomorrow night and it looks to have a little bit of everything to satisfy all the appetites and tastes of all the different WWE fans. While we are certain to have a disaster on our hand in a sumo match, there is still the possibility of a solid ladder match between Benjamin, Christian, Benoit, Edge, Kane and Jericho, a changing of the championship guard with JBL and Cena and Batista and Triple H. The pay per view seems as though there will be the closing of some feuds, the heightening of others and finally the emergence of new ones. If the event has done a more than admirable job of taking both shows and making something that would make any filmmaker happy. Well, anyone not named Allan Smittee.