WWE Main Event returned Wednesday night and maintained as much of it’s old school charm as it had when it debuted on ION Television over a week ago. However, things were simply a lot less interesting this time out. A week ago we were treated to a fantastic back and forth contest between WWE Champion CM Punk and World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus, arguably the two hottest stars in the industry right now.
Wednesday night we saw the “World’s Largest Athlete,” the Big Show, take on the “Viper,” Randy Orton. No disrespect to either competitor, but they don’t necessarily have the ability to carry 20 plus minutes of high octane action the way Punk and Sheamus did a week ago. Everyone knew that WWE brought out the big guns for the WWE Main Event’s premiere, but after 1.4 million viewers tuned in to see World Champions collide, you have to wonder how many people will be tuning out on a weekly basis as the featured star power dwindles.
This isn’t to say Randy Orton and the Big Show aren’t legitimate stars in the minds of the viewing audience. As far as name recognition is concerned, they are still two of the biggest stars around, but Randy Orton isn’t the Randy Orton of even a year ago thanks to suspension trouble and the Big Show is used as a force so inconsistently that it’s hard to view Big Show as more than he really is; a placeholder in the main event scene against Sheamus.
Inside the ring, it was absolutely remarkable that things went as long as they did between the Big Show and Orton. At nearly 20 minutes, things were at times painfully slow, but also about as good as you’d expect considering the circumstances. Randy battled back from the Big Show’s dominance with brief flurries of offense until eventually hitting the RKO, his finishing maneuver. The Big Show was able to roll out of the ring to avoid the cover and eventually used the camel clutch in combination with multiple elbow drops to the back and a choke-slam to put Orton away in convincing fashion. The current format for Main Event works, but if you’re highlighting a legitimate wrestling match each and every week, it’s probably best to keep the likes of the Big Show far, far away from Wednesday night’s program.
Things should be very interesting next Wednesday night when the WWE will headline Main Event with an Intercontinental Championship showdown between the Miz and Kofi Kingston, two notable mid-carders who can get a reaction out of the fans in attendance, but whether or not either one has the drawing power to pull the television viewing audience in remains to be seen.
What’s perhaps most confusing here is that the night closed with Kofi Kingston taking on Michael McGullicutty, yes… the same Michael McGullicutty who hasn’t been relevant since… well… ever. This was all about the Miz getting in the ring with Kofi Kingston to continue to build up their feud that began Monday night on Raw and will continue through their Intercontinental Championship match next Wednesday. Would it have hurt to give Kofi a more relevant opponent? Probably not, but the show closed with another relevant segment.
Even if the Miz isn’t what he was more than a year ago when he won a Wrestlemania main event against John Cena, walking into and out of Wrestlemania as the WWE Champion, the Miz still has star power. Even if he’s not in the main event right now, the fans still buy into him which is why he is somewhat valuable holding WWE’s mid-card gold. Kofi Kingston dodged an attack to close the show and hit the Miz with “Trouble In Paradise” before holding up the Intercontinental Championship. Kofi and the Miz hardly get the time to deliver great matches on a very crowded show Monday nights, but they’ll have the benefit of being able to run the show here and both individuals have a “golden” opportunity.