I really think I need to watch the show again sometime, I think the combination of being utterly deflated by the booking of the first hour, being very tired in the not so early hours of the morning and naturally needing to keep the volume fairly low (in order to not be complete arses and keep Louise awake!) and therefore not getting the atmosphere quite so well may have led to me judging the second half of the show harshly. This is not to say the show was without significant problems, it really was. I'd just be interested to buy the BLU-ray (mostly for the HOF ceremony) and see what I think on second viewing. With that in mind:
Bryan vs Sheamus
A complete error of judgement. I like Sheamus a lot but creative has let him down with this push. There's been no momentum behind it and it's come across as forced, leading to him getting booed at Mania during his entrance. Not his fault, and a real shame. Meanwhile, Bryan has evolved his character into something that genuinely stands out. These two could have had a real mood-setting opener with the powerhouse vs sneaky technician dynamic. Instead the crowd and home audience gets slapped in the face having paid for the most expensive broadcast in all of entertainment. The only upside of this is that I think WWE got the message, and hopefully this will lead to good things for Bryan.
Kane vs Orton
Exactly what I expected. Would have been fine other than it really needed to bring people up after the Bryan debacle. Orton hasn't meant less in a long, long time, which is ironic as I think he's never been better.
Big Show vs Cody Rhodes
Meh. Show gets his moment by winning a belt that was last actually defended in 1974. No drama in this at all, and still failed to bring the crowd back up.
Frigging awful. There is a good divas division in the company now. Beth is awesome, but even Kelly and Eve are pretty decent in the ring nowadays, and watching them all selflessly doing everything they could to protect a celebrity that absolutely nobody cared about was just sad. Kudos to them and I hope they get something better to do next year.
Hell In A Cell:
I saw this very differently from Ben. Phenomenal part 2 to last year, that actually makes me look back on that match more fondly. They will never make the streak look more under threat again, and the facial expressions, psychology, timing and selling from all three guys was above and beyond what anyone else on the roster is capable of. This was special, and the visual of Taker and Michaels helping Hunter to the back was an unexpected and beautiful end to a very long story.
Team Terry vs Team Jimmy
Exactly what it was supposed to be. I didn't care much but it didn't suck and gave about 16 people a spot on Mania in a segment that had storyline significance. Fine for what it was.
Punk vs Jericho
This is where I think fatigue was killing me. I'm pretty sure this was a great match between two of my absolute favourites but I just never got into it. Needs a second viewing.
Rock vs Cena
I think the abysmal Brodus Clay segment and the horribly misjudged music segments finished off my enthusiasm before this match even started. Such a shame because they seemed to be working hard and I've been looking forward to this match for a year. All I remember is the appallingly applied sharpshooter and STF pissing me off more than usual. Second viewing required.
Things are looking god following RAW, Rocky wants the WWE title, Punk vs Jericho heated up further, A-Train/Tensai gives the roster some added depth, there was a sign that Bryan isn't about to be buried, Del Rio is back...oh yeah, and Brock Frigging Lesnar has signed for a year. Interesting times ahead...