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The Ultra Comprehensive Wrestlemania 33 Review, Part 1

Reviewing The Pre-Show and The First Four Matches

Rory Gallagher, Staff Writer

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The Saturday before Wrestlemania, I had finally become excited about the show. Even though the lineup of matches did not seem satisfactory in the slightest, I was willing to expect a good show.

Instead, what I got was the best mainstream wrestling show I have seen in a long time. The title matches for Smackdown were severely outclassed by the title matches for RAW, but from the start of the pre-show, everything was good.

WRESTLEMANIA PRE-SHOW

“The King of The Cruiserweights” Neville  versus Austin “The Greatest Man Who Ever Lived” Aries for the WWE Cruiserweight Title
Neville & Aries are a match made in heaven, and the crowd at Payback in San Jose on April 30th better make a lot of noise for their rematch. Their speed and skill at hitting hard is second to none, and this match contains the most painful looking German suplex I have seen in a long time. This was my second favorite match of the night.
Andre The Giant Battle Royal, won by Mojo Rawley with assistance from best friend Rob “Gronk” Gronkowski

There was no mistake that this match was during the hour that the Wrestlemania Pre-Show was broadcasting live on the USA Network. World Wrestling Entertainment’s biggest show of the year always has a spot where a sports star beats up wrestlers. However, Rob Gronkowski went above and beyond. The small-time villain Jinder Mahal, who is an evil pacifist for some reason, beat up the “Hype Bro” Mojo Rawley in front of his New England Patriots player bro, drank Gronk’s beer, then received a football player’s pent-up anger tackle from not being in the Super Bowl this year. Mahal, was then dunked out of the arena by Mojo. Mojo and Gronk then celebrated with a running chest-bump.

“The Lunatic Fringe” Dean Ambrose (champion) vs “The Lone Wolf” Baron Corbin for the Intercontinental Championship

Dean Ambrose is cursed when it comes to Wrestlemania. His match this year got pushed to the end of the pre-show and was forced to become a brawl-heavy normal match. The match was terrible. Dean Ambrose is bad at punching, and Baron Corbin had nothing to do except mouth off and then lose. Watch that match from the recent episode of Smackdown instead.

WRESTLEMANIA ITSELF

“The Former Champ That Runs The Camp” AJ Styles vs “My Dad If He Had Gracie Family MMA Training” Shane McMahon in a Respect Match (for lack of a gimmick)

Holy cow, Shane-O-Mac is a beautiful lunatic. The guy hit his trademark Van Daminator/Coast To Coast Missile Dropkick at 47 years old. He dove elbow-first into an announce table at 47 years old. Above all else, he did a perfect-looking Shooting Star Press at 47 years old as a last resort. Speaking of that guy, AJ Styles  matched Shane-O-Mac in the amount and quality of leaping moves. This was a great opener, even if the non-dance punches made me embarrassed for liking fake fighting. My friend and fellow Kishwaukee student Nick said that this match was his favorite of the whole show.
The Battle of The Ex-Best Friends: Chris Jericho (champion) vs Kevin Owens.

Once again, cruel dad turned cool dad Chris Jericho accepted a challenge that he could not win from heartless monster Kevin Owens. It was not as epic as it could have been, but the match was a much better midcard title showing than Ambrose/Corbin. Y2J hit the perfect counter of his own Codebreaker finisher once Kevin tried to Pop-Up Powerbomb him, but Kevin stopped the aforementioned Codebreaker counter from being a three count by putting just one finger on the ropes. Greatest comedy spot of the night. Kevin won after powerbombing Jericho into the ring apron like a monster.

The RAW Women’s’ Match, won by champion Bayley

The only four women on RAW that had a match that went super great, thanks to the pyrotechnics laden entrances of Sasha Banks and Charlotte. There is one aspect that will forever live in infamy thanks to my friend, though. On the Network broadcast, Charlotte was shown untying the middle turnbuckle pad, but as Bayley interrupted her, the pad stayed firmly on.  When both Sasha Banks and Charlotte were eliminated by hitting the turnbuckle pad, my friend Tim Saunders (check out his wrestling rap “Becky Lynch” at soundcloud.com/june5th) had a mental breakdown and considered that since that piece of cushioning was the strongest part of the match, it deserved the Women’s Championship. This will always be the Turnbuckle Champion match in my mind.

Fatal Four-way Ladder Match for The RAW Tag Team Championship, won by The Hardy Boyz after a seven year absence

Fellow Kscope writer Abi Carlson also saw Wrestlemania, and she probably did not react as embarrassingly as I did by jumping around my living room. Matt & Jeff Hardy love insane storylines, jumping off of high things, and making hand gestures. Those aspects are why I got into wrestling to begin with. They are the best people, and now RAW is must watch TV for me. Currently, the boyz from Cameron are dialing back on their recent #Broken Hardys gimmick, which involved them being an insane pagan ultimate tag team with a gardener as well as  a drone for backup. Winning the RAW Tag Team Titles at Wrestlemania was a perfect return for the Hardy Boyz, and their presence in WWE makes me confident for the future.

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The Ultra Comprehensive Wrestlemania 33 Review, Part 1