Hi, my name’s Andy, and I’m a miserable bastard who doesn’t like anything. To capitalise on this, once a week I will be moaning about something in my new series, What Went Wrong?
Basically, I’ll be taking something from a current wrestling storyline, or a historically bad storyline, and then explaining why exactly it went wrong…at least in my opinion, which is of course the only opinion worth having.
So. Retribution. What went wrong?
Well, let’s start at the beginning, because starting anywhere else would be psychotic and you’d want to stop reading immediately and call social services.
Retribution debuted on the August 7 episode of SmackDown, storming the ring, beating up the poor enhancement talents at ringside, spray-painting things on the wall, and using an actual chainsaw to destroy the ring ropes. This in itself was fine, in fact it was what you would kind of expect from a new chaotic faction…chaos. The issue was that this debut had come after a few weeks of the lights being turned off on both Raw and SmackDown, and I don’t know about you, but I can think of at least two or three other, more intimidating ways of introducing myself.
If this debut had happened without any of the build-up, and without WWE.com putting out an article giving us the name of the faction after they briefly appeared on Raw, then it would have been a lot more effective and shocking. Instead what we got was an expected attack, and nothing makes a surprise less interesting than already knowing about it beforehand. It’s like finding out Ryback is going to be appearing at your birthday party several weeks beforehand. I would want to be surprised!
Since their debut on SmackDown, it’s the blue brand that has been most affected by Retribution’s attacks, but the way the threat was presented made the group look incredibly lame. The following week’s show opened up with a shot of TWO security guards at the door of the Performance Center. I dunno about you, but if I saw a large group of people running around with a chainsaw in my office, I would expect Oli to but more than two people on the door. It makes it look like WWE doesn’t really care about them, and even later during the show, the same two security guards were seen guarding the ring while Retribution ran wild backstage…so who’s now guarding the front door?!
The point of introducing a new, chaotic faction is surely so that at least the ringleader would reveal him or herself at a big PPV show, and what better way to do that than to have the big reveal at Summerslam, or even the following week’s Payback? Well, clearly WWE has thought of a better way, because the group didn’t show up at either show, and only made the lights flicker slightly. Perhaps they employed one more security guard and that was enough to stop them.
At this point, the only people in danger from Retribution is someone with a migraine who doesn’t want the lighting to change.
So, they don’t show up at Summerslam or Payback, but that’s fine, because they can keep tearing things up on Raw and SmackDown, can’t they? Well, you’d be half right, because it was reported this past week that Retribution is now a Raw act, and will not be appearing on SmackDown, because nothing says unexpected chaos like making a group brand exclusive.
So not only are their attacks pretty lame, but they can now only happen during a pre-planned three-hour period on a Monday night. Wow, that’s really scary.
The biggest issue is that after less than a month since they debuted, I no longer see them as a threat, and if they attack someone, I don’t get excited to see them.
I’m always happy to be proved wrong, so we’ll see what happens in the coming weeks, but the way Retribution has been presented so far has not filled me with any kind of confidence.
Do you agree with me? Let me know in the comments and tag me on Twitter with your insults. You can also tag me with suggestions for the next “What Went Wrong?”