Bang For Your Buck PPV Review: 2014 Hell in a Cell


Brie Bella vs. Nikki Bella

Best Case Scenario: The two most improved performers of the last five years put on a match that is within swiping distance of Brie and Steph’s legitimately wonderful match at SummerSlam. Also, literally no one uses the b-word. Which is, of course, BRIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEMMMMMMODDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDEEEEE
What Nick Wants to Happen: Something between surprising and shocking to happen in what feels like the most inevitable match/finish possible. Given that there’s almost no way Brie wins this, the ride getting there should have something at least compelling enough to not make me wish that I was watching Total Divas. 

This had the same exact resonance with me as Ziggler-Cesaro did.

That may sound insane, but it’s important to note that this was nearly the opposite end of the expectation spectrum from Ziggler/Cesaro, and delivered with essentially as good a match as could be expected from these two. Which is to say, while there are any number of Ziggler/Cesaro matches I could watch instead of Sunday’s, there’s no such back catalogue of great Bella moments, so almost inherently anything rewatchable by the Bellas — I like the Bella characters fundamentally, and for the most part haven’t really ever “minded” watching them — is more “valuable” in terms of replay value. When they’ve started to develop as performers, this will no longer be the case and the novelty of a good Bella match will no longer be able to carry it to memorability. But for now, I’m just happy I can now enjoy their matches without irony or self-delusions.

As nearly everyone has indicated — and as you can audibly hear us exclaim several times — THE Nikki Bella has turned into a beautiful hoss monster capable of snapping girls in two without breaking eye contact with the hard camera. And with Charlotte, Bayley and Sasha Banks on their way up, the Bellas could not have picked a better time to get their acts together in the ring, and as such, have managed to be two of the most improved performers since Mark Henry’s meteoric rise to the Hall of Fame Pain. While this wasn’t nearly as good as August’s Steph-Brie match, it did everything it was supposed essentially exactly how it was supposed to, and allowed THE Nikki Bella to look both literally and figuratively strong while giving the reason for this relatively money feud to keep going.

As Noah pointed during our conversations, the idea of the Bellas as anything nearing watchable — let alone the plateau of “good” they are inching ever closer to — is still something we need to adjust to, and it will take some time. At that point, the Bellas will have to evolve with the expectations they will be setting, or they will never come close to reaching these heights again. No pressure, though.

Match +.6 | PPV 1.2


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