It goes without saying how much I despise Michael Cole’s character. Yes, he does get the job done as a heel in being a complete full-blown and borderline sexist asshole and there are a lot of times where it feels like he’s trying too hard in trying to maintain and gain the amount of heat that management feels he needs. The worst part about Cole’s character is how he seems to spit and urinate and not sell the product he’s supposed to be selling as an announcer. I don’t care if the Diva matches aren’t that good, there needs to be a set limit to how far is too far in terms of Cole’s quest to get as much heat on him as possible and having him not only interrupt the Divas Title match but also to actually get up on the table with Matthews telling him to sit down is just ridiculous, over the top, and channel changer worthy. To make things worse, all the time and energy that the WWE has put into making Cole’s character, it’s burying the rest of the roster.
You have guys like Kofi Kingston, John Morrison, Drew McIntyre, Jack Swagger, Sheamus and Ted DiBiase, all of which have been on the back burner for the last couple of months. Kofi was the intercontinental champion for a while before he lost it on Friday Night Smackdown to Wade Barrett, and yet, there has been no match set up for him at Mania and to a degree he has become irrelevant. Sheamus was the same way despite winning the King of the Ring tournament and was being treated the same way until this past Monday where he won the United States title and it looks like he has a match with Daniel Bryan in a U.S. Title rematch at Wrestlemania. It’s something but the question remains did they wait too long to start doing something with Sheamus. Then we have Drew McIntyre, the so-called “Chosen One.” The last thing that Drew McIntyre did that was relevant was a rivalry with Matt Hardy and then with Kofi Kingston. Now, it’s like the WWE can’t seem to make up their mind on what to do with Drew McIntyre apart from his on/off whatever you want to call it with Kelly Kelly.
Next up, we have the Million Dollar sonny boy himself in Ted DiBiase. These days, DiBiase seems to be too busy getting beaten up by NXT Rookies, Jerry Lawler, occasionally slapped by Maryse and when there is extra TV time, everybody else. It’s truly a shame considering I feel his old man was one of the greats. And I know that John Morrison and Jack Swagger have plans at Wrestlemania, but does anyone really want to count them? Swagger is just going to be at ringside for Michael Cole during the Cole vs. Lawler match and it’s almost a guarantee he’ll end up getting the Stone Cold Stunner along with Cole.
And last but not least, well to the rest of us anyway but unfortunately least in Vince McMahon’s eyes, we have John Morrison. This is the same guy who stunned us all at the Royal Rumble by avoiding elimination in the Rumble match by clinging onto the barricade like he was Spider-Man, followed by a tightrope walk on the barricade and leaping from it onto the steel steps. He even had a Falls Count Anywhere match against the Miz that stole the show and left many to feel that Morrison was not only ready for the main event picture, but also ready for a title reign. So what does the WWE do? They put this guy in a match teamed with Trish Stratus and Snooki from Jersey Shore against Dolph Ziggler and Lay-Cool. Could you think of a bigger way to waste talent like Ziggler and Morrison than by putting them in this train wreck? John Morrison proved at the Royal Rumble and in the Elimination Chamber along with these crazy moves he keeps doing in almost every match that he’s really come a long way from being one of the two winners of Tough Enough season 3, well, that and his “Johnny Nitro” days. And yet, Vince keeps holding him down due to minimal mic skills. Jeff Hardy has zero to no mic skills and neither does Matt Hardy, but look at them now. Okay, maybe Jeff Hardy is a bad example right now but you get the idea. As for Jeff Hardy, that’s a topic for a different blog.
As far as the match between Cole and Lawler, Stone Cold Steve Austin as the new guest referee for the match pretty much ruled out any chance of Cole pulling a fast one and beating Lawler, even with Swagger at ringside. Since it looks like Cole is going to lose the match and fans will get what they wish to see in seeing Cole get the ass-kicking of a lifetime along with a Stone Cold Stunner to boot, the big question is where do you go with him after? Having Cole maintain this heel character for so long has damaged whatever credibility he has as an announcer. You can’t have him go back to just calling the matches like he used to do. Yes, he was bland, boring and looked like a Pee-Wee Herman doll in a bad suit and lousy haircut, but the problem here is he loses his match after going on and on about how he said he was going to beat Jerry Lawler at Mania and fails to do it, you kill whatever momentum his character had. Let’s be honest, this is not a match that you can go on to see on back-to-back PPV’s. This is a match that should be done once and that’s it. Besides, even if you have Cole get a rematch and beats Lawler somehow, so what? He still failed to beat Lawler where it counted and that is at Wrestlemania. Personally, I’m perfectly happy with just Josh Matthews and Jerry Lawler on Raw and having Matthews and Booker T on Smackdown. Bear in mind that the only reason I’m settling on Matthews, not to put him down, is because I don’t want to get my hopes up of having Jim Ross return unless it actually happens.
Speaking of Smackdown, I don’t see a need for a 3-person announce team as it didn’t work out that great when it was Lawler, Coach and Jim Ross. The WWE needs to wise-up and realize that this is one aspect from WCW they don’t need to copy. The fans want Jim Ross back, I want Jim Ross back and it seems like even Lawler wants him back, so just get it overwith already. The countdown is currently less than 7 days to Wrestlemania. I don’t know about anybody else, but I don’t think I’m gonna be able to handle any more days of dealing with Michael Cole making an ass out of himself and trying to be as over the top as possible to the point where he’s a heel of Andy Kaufman-like proportions. Vickie Guerrero has been a heel and gets a lot of heat, but the difference is that her appearance makes viewers and fans boo the hell out of her while Michael Cole makes people reach for the remote control. If they want to make Cole into this tremendous heel, that’s fine but don’t go doing that at the expense of stars on your roster.
All of this time and effort into Michael Cole, and the WWE forgets that they’re running out of heavy hitters in the main event. Edge is said to be done in a year or two, Taker is on his last legs, Triple H is considering hanging it up, which leaves them with only John Cena and Randy Orton who have a reasonable amount of time left. Bottom line, plenty of chances to try and re-load their main event roster, all wasted by developing a character out of an announcer nobody likes.
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