Sunday, May 23, 2010
S*** gets real for Daniel Bryan / Bryan Danielson on NXT
First, a programming schedule for today and tomorrow: This entry now, followed by another wrestling entry at 3 p.m., and a review of the Modern Family finale at 7 p.m. The endgame of LOST is also tonight, and I'm undecided if I'll be live blogging (or, you could say LOST-blogging, ha ha ha!) or simply writing about the show shortly after it's over. Tomorrow will feature a post about WWE's Sunday PPV, although I'm unsure if it'll be at 11 a.m., 3 p.m. or 7 p.m. All times are EST.
Anyway, to the topic at hand. I'm not a regular viewer of NXT, the WWE's version of American Idol that airs on SyFy (or however you kids spell it nowadays). On a week to week basis, the non-wrestling aspects are cheesy, and this is especially true once they started doing "challenges" like jousting each other with giant Q-tips, as if they were on American Gladiators.
However, this past week had a better than average episode, mostly because of the great promo by Daniel Bryan / Bryan Danielson. On NXT, he is known as Daniel Bryan, a newcomer to the business with great technical skill. However, in reality he is Bryan Danielson, who has been known on the independent circuit and in Ring of Honor for years as a champion.
On Tuesday, he did what's known as a worked shoot - He clearly spoke what he was actually thinking, as opposed to going off of a fake wrestling angle. However, it's called a worked shoot because he probably got permission from the WWE to do this. It's clear that they intend to play up his background as a successful wrestler in the indies, and in this respect, I think he could succeed wildly. After an initial adjustment period to the WWE "style", C.M. Punk got some significant pushes. While Danielson has just been shoving announcer Michael Cole around at first, I think his anti-WWE character had a lot more chance then his initial role on NXT, that of a Colin Delaney-type loser.
As far as his actual promo, I thought it was spot-on. The WWE regularly overlooks people who don't have the right physique, to their detriment. Evan Bourne should already be at least a midcard guy, instead of languishing in near-jobber status. Is it believable that he could beat a monster like the Undertaker? With the right storytelling, I think so! Given the velocity that he propels himself off the ropes with, I think it's plausible that he and other smaller wrestlers could handle themselves in the ring with a bigger guy.