Credit to Ash from Wrestling Shorts, support the talented bastard on Patreon here: Wrestling Shorts Patreon
Imp’s WWE Adventure
WWE Evolution Just Defined the Future
or I Guess Evolution is No Longer a Mystery
As I’m starting to write this it’s been about 12 hours since WWE Evolution ended and I’m still buzzing somewhat significantly. Ever since the show finished there has just been this feeling in the air, that sense of having just witnessed a future defining night. A true landmark moment for WWE and especially the women employed within it.
As soon as I saw the darker crowd lighting and heard the audio set up with the loudness of the mat, I thought, “Man, this has got Triple H’s fingerprints all over it and I love it.” Better still, this show was apparently a real passion for Stephanie McMahon. Overall, this show was one hell of a positive sign for the future.
Speaking of the future. If anything, I compare the feeling closest to that of the first NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn event. The arena had an amazing energy that night and when Bayley vs Sasha tore the roof down it seemingly changed the game for women in WWE overnight. After that there was no going back to 3 minute roll-up victory matches, the fans were never going to accept that after witnessing that classic.
However, that night was really the launching pad after months if not years building up to that point. The Four Horsewomen of NXT had been building that foundation night after night, after night, after night. This women’s revolution didn’t spring upon us out of nowhere, a lot of hard work was put in down in NXT and the Developmental Centre.
With Bayley’s arc slowly building, brewing and evolving over a relatively long time. Whilst she as garnering more and more support with a damn well written arc, the other women down in NXT we breaking down the barriers. Paige vs Emma and Natalya vs Charlotte being two that immediately jump to mind as perception changing moments for women’s wrestling within WWE.
What I’m getting at is that all of those moments, from Paige vs Emma to Bayley vs Sasha to Charlotte vs Asuka, all of them were building to tonight. Building to a night like this where all of that hard work was put on a pedestal and used to propel the women’s division in WWE to a whole new level. In a way, the end of the beginning. And my God did Evolution propel in one mighty fashion.
Becky Lynch vs Charlotte Flair
The Four Horsewomen of NXT Change the Game in WWE Once Again
So let’s talk about this beast of a match. Just like with the first TakeOver: Brooklyn (and ALL IN from earlier this year), the hot crowd was there, all the momentum in the world was in their hands, all they needed was that one match to really take things to that higher level. Without question Lynch vs Flair was that match.
The first hour was pure fun and absolutely flew by as if it had only been 15 minutes. The second upped the ante with the quality/chaotic nature of the matches with the athleticism of the Mae Young Classic final, which had some damn impressive spots on top a sound technical bout. Then the pure chaos of the 6 woman tag, which was given way more time as expected. Something I was personally fine with, as it gave The Riott Squad so much depth and was a real showcase for the group on top of being a stage for Sasha/Bayley to shine outside of the Battle Royal. And finally the MMA Horsewomen interference of the NXT Women’s Championship, which was one hell of a hectic ending to another bloody brilliant chapter in the Sane vs Baszler NXT saga.
In the final hour though, we got all of those qualities crammed into one damn fantastic Last Woman Standing match. Don’t get me wrong, I also enjoyed the main event, but for me Becky & Charlotte put on a true Match of the Year contender. And just like with Bayley vs Sasha, I expect that to jolt WWE into a much needed shift. One way or another, I expect this match to shape the future of the WWE.
That said, has there ever been a women’s storyline in WWE that has been this consistently well done since day one? The course correction was arguably carried out perfectly, don’t get me wrong the editing of the crowd reactions in the video packages is still a bit weird, but the actual content itself has been absolutely wonderful to watch.
Fans are calling the champ ‘Stone Cold Becky Lynch’ for a reason and it’s not just because of a couple of similar characteristics. Lynch has used the unpredictable ‘take no shit from nobody’ nature to her absolute advantage, not forgetting how damn well Charlotte has been as her adversary.
Personally, I’ve started to find how Charlotte has stepped up to matching Becky’s brawling nature just as interesting as the arc of the champ herself. Arguably, tonight was her arc coming full circle just as much as it was Becky’s. Half way through the match I wouldn’t have been surprised if they had in fact let Charlotte go full heel mode in her attempt to best the Irish Lass Kicker. Both women threw absolutely everything at each other and we genuinely hit that peak moment of, “Oh God, they won’t stay down! What are they going to have to do?” and both women seemed to reach that pinnacle point of finally snapping.
Those two women beat the living crap out of each other and put on a classic in the process, a match which took the whole event to another level. In fact, I said I had come round to getting invested in Charlotte’s story, but don’t let that take away from the fact that this ended up being Becky’s moment of elevation. She was champion going in, but now, like she said on the ramp after the match, “I’m the man!”
The only real negative I’ve seen people agree on was the fact that this match wasn’t the main event, but personally that isn’t really an issue for me. Rousey vs Nikki Bella brought in so much good mainstream media attention, that really all Lynch and Flair had to do was act as the Savage vs Steamboat of the evening. A casual person may have tuned in for Rousey vs Nikki, but they were pulled in and will stay because of Lynch vs Flair.
That said, in reality the actual main event wasn’t half bad either. Evolution was overall just a bloody great show.
In a week that I’m expecting to be full of negatives and controversy, this was a real special night. An event I’m sure fans will hold in high regard for quite some time. And this was only the beginning. Going forward, you can’t help but think that with this event the female wrestlers within WWE have well and truly established themselves.
Email Imp – [email protected]
Imp’s on LOP Radio every Thursday with Perfect 10 Wrestling. This past week he was joined by Rich Latta & James Boyd for a damn fun show covering this year’s Mae Young Classic tournamet ahead of WWE Evolution. Listen here:
Links to Imp’s latest columns:
Imp’s WWE Adventure – Saudi Arabia: Should WWE Leave The Deal?
Imp’s NJPW Adventure – King of Pro Wrestling: The Road to Wrestle Kingdom Has Officially Begun!
Imp’s WWE Adventure – I Couldn’t Give Less Of A S*** About WWE Super Show-Down
Imp’s NJPW Adventure – Tanahashi vs Okada Episode VIII: The Last Rainmaker
Imp’s Adventure: ALL IN and the List of Pointless Comparisons
Imp’s WWE Adventure: Are You Wrong To Cheer Becky Lynch?
We are currently recruiting new writers with the opportunity of posting here on Lords of Pain. If you have ever wanted to write here then sign up via the picture below and join the talented writers down in the CF!