Thumbs in the middle
Best match: Cody Rhodes & Goldust vs. Ryback & Curtis Axel vs. Rey Mysterio & Big Show vs. Antonio Cesaro & Jack Swagger
Worst match: Brodus Clay vs. R-Truth
Up until the not-so welcome surprises, this show was going good, then it took a nosedive and failed to recover.
Starting with an Authority promo didn't bode well. Every time they open a PPV it doesn't end pretty. The way they talked about the fifty year history and how Lou Thesz and Buddy Rogers started the title lineage made me think how rushed and thrown together the whole angle has been, as the grandeur of the occasion hasn't had time to sink in.
The opening video package did a fine job of conveying the importance of the main event. Although, once again, it would of been more effective with a longer build.
CM Punk vs. Roman Reigns, Dean Ambrose & Seth Rollins: A slow burner that eventually caught fire. Reigns flying over the table being the obvious standout moment and the eye injury helped contribute to making Punk's win more believable. As well as that, I really liked the finish.
A.J Lee vs. Natalya: A great Divas match. They worked their tails off and the submission spots were dramatically first-rate. Maybe I enjoyed it a lot because A.J won. I'm a big fan of hers and don't like the way Natalya never puts over A.J's ability in promos, even though she's given countless opportunities to do so.
Big E. Langston vs. Damien Sandow: A perfectly acceptable contest. It's only failure being I never believed a title change could happen. Other than that, Sandow impressed me and so did Langston's knack at drawing a reaction.
Cody Rhodes & Goldust vs. Ryback & Curtis Axel vs. Rey Mysterio & Big Show vs. Antonio Cesaro & Jack Swagger: Goldust's renaissance is nothing short of remarkable. His work with The Real Americans leading to the hot tag was masterful. With that and the sensational climax, this was fantastic.
Brodus Clay vs. R-Truth: If this match was a Christmas present, you'd ask the giver if they kept the receipt.
Kofi Kingston vs. The Miz: I wish these impromptu matches were something I actually care about. Another massive disappointment. The "no disqualification" stipulation was absolutely pointless. It's 2013, an exposed turnbuckle doesn't quite cut it anymore.
Daniel Bryan vs. Bray Wyatt, Luke Harper & Erick Rowan: I have mixed feelings about this one. It was good and got better as it progressed, but something didn't click for me. I just can't fathom what was supposed to be achieved. Neither party came out of it any stronger. Sure, Wyatt got a big pin. The thing is, it's a handicap match, so he should of won. That simple fact nullified anything special attained by the victory. However, there were some great spots, like the spider walk, the super back suplex and the long range flying headbutt.
Randy Orton vs. John Cena: Not a complete catastrophe, nothing incredible, though. The handcuff spot was a clever moment, although I didn't like Cena no selling a ladder shot when chained to the rope. It didn't look good. Two other notable spots were Cena hanging from the belts and the botched table spot. Any crash and burn moments like the second one are always more suspenseful when they get messed up. That being said, as it was the finish, I felt a bit let down. You'd think a big historical moment would have a suitably fitting match, not some sloppy gimmick fest. To be honest, they should of switched the belts.
I haven't ordered a ppv since summerslam so i was fortunate to miss the crap wwe had been producing of late. However Monday nights raw convinced me to give tlc a shot and while nothing on the show tonight was as good as raw closing segment, i was not disappointed with the ppv.
Best match - cena vs orton for unified title
Orton winning was not a surprise and i thought both men and wwe did a good job telling a story here.
Worst match. - kofi vs miz
Seriously dumb waste of the little time they got
Noteworthy - bray wyatt is a star and had an amazing performance tonight. Wwe still doing all they can to disregard Daniel bryan and its a sad tale.
Best Match: John Cena v Randy Orton
Worst Match: R-Truth v Brodus Clay
Cena vs Orton...again. A solid match, a well-worked main event (with one notable botched spot that sort of weakened the finish). But in the end, once again, the two guys who have been on top of the promotion, put over everyone else, for the past decade. And that's how the crowd reacted. Except for CM Punk and Daniel Bryan, who are clearly B1 and B2 on the depth chart. And if WWE really wanted to book for the future, they would have been in the main event, unifying the title belts.
Thumbs in the middle
Best Match: Four way Tag
Worst Match: R-Truth vs. Brodus Clay
This was the best WWE PPV since SummerSlam, though that's not exactly saying much. I'm probably feeling better about it having got the show free on Sky Sports than Americans would be having paid over $50 for it.
The first hour was very good. Punk/Shield told a good story with Reigns' eye injury playing into the finish of the match, though it wasn't up there with a lot of The Shield's best trios matches throughout the year. AJ/Natalya was one of the better women's PPV matches of the year, probably #2 behind AJ/Kaitlyn at Payback. Big E/Sandow was fine. The four way tag was the best match on the show, especially after Ryback and Axel got out of there. I'd have loved it more if I didn't read the Dolphin Reddit Guy's pick beforehand, a rare slipup there. Cody and Rey's exchange at the end was excellent.
The second hour was poorly arranged. Putting Truth/Clay and Kingston/Miz back to back was ill thought out. It was almost as if they decided to try and stack the deck against Daniel Bryan in order to get the fans back into the show after two Main Event (the show, not PPV) level matches. Thankfully he did, and the Wyatt Family looked the best they have since they've been called up, and Bray Wyatt looked great in beating him. Hopefully they continue a long build with Bryan, and don't have him eat many more losses, whilst continuing to elevate Wyatt as a monster heel.
The main event was good, if par for the course for both Cena and Orton. The four year gap made this one tolerable, anything shorter, and fans would have been bored out of their minds. Still felt it was a pretty anticlimatic way to unify the titles, especially since they went out of their way to forget that the whole Chris Jericho thing never happened. Credit to Cena for actually caring that he lost the match, the old Cena would have laughed it off the next night on RAW without fail.