WWE Returns to Saudi Arabia for Crown Jewel

Screen Shot 2018-09-29 at 9.37.50 PMOn November 2, 2018, WWE will return to Saudi Arabia for the Crown Jewel pay-per-view. Last time the company put on a show in Saudi Arabia – The Greatest Royal Rumble, which took place on April 27th this year – WWE’s female superstars were notably missing from the show.

This decision received major backlash, fans critical of the company’s choice of seemingly pressing pause on the Women’s Evolution. Triple H, an executive for the company has been quoted saying, “I understand that people are questioning it, but you have to understand that every culture is different and just because you don’t agree with a certain aspect of it, it doesn’t mean it’s not a relevant culture…”

The women’s division has changed tremendously over the last few years. Female superstars are constantly raising the bar for themselves. They have proven themselves to be experts at adapting. They have the ability to shock the audience in a way that I never thought was possible. They are exhibiting pure talent, that for once, is not being so tightly contained.

That is why this decision is such a surprising move for the WWE. Not only are the women being left out once this year – it’s happening again. Twice in the same year. This feels like a step back for the women of the WWE. They have earned their right to compete at every major show the company creates. If the company ever wants to achieve true equality for their women competitors – because, let’s face it, we’re still a long way from that – they need to stand by their women. They need to stand up for their women.

Having one all-women pay-per-view event doesn’t make up for their exclusion at Crown Jewel. It doesn’t make up for their exclusion at WWE Greatest Royal Rumble. It doesn’t make up for the years of abuse and ridicule by the company. Show female superstars that they’re just as important as the men. Show this in your event venues, in your booking choices, in your matchmaking, in your story lines.

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Carmella: New Hair, New Attitude

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Fans definitely noticed a change in the Princess of Staten Island’s appearance this past week on Smackdown. ‘Mella has already commented on the look, stating that she “wanted a change” as the reason for going back to her natural brunette hair color. However, after her Truth TV segment this past week with R Truth, the WWE Universe has to be wondering: is there more to Carmella’s new ‘do? Screen Shot 2018-09-27 at 5.04.12 PM

Personally, I think Carmella has turned face, and her hair isn’t the only clue. Carmella partnered with R Truth in the Mixed Match Challenge. Truth – whose character interacts with and entertains the audience – is clearly a face. While it isn’t impossible for a heel and a face to team together in the MMC (take Miz & Asuka, for example), the timing seems relevant.

This week on Smackdown, Carmella was the co-host of R Truth’s first and last episode of Truth TV, where she and her tag partner had “7 second dance breaks.” This is a huge character change for her. Since she arrived on the main roster, Carmella has been a textbook heel, callous and apathetic when it comes to what the audience thinks of her. She would rather trash-talk the WWE Universe than make them laugh.

‘Mella was also in Truth’s corner in his match against the Miz, one of the best heels in the WWE today. Most matches are face vs. heel, very black and white, and this match was no different. Carmella being in direct opposition of the heel in this match means something.

Another indication of a face turn can be found in Corey Graves’ commentary. Graves tends to side with heels, and without fail has spoken favorably about Carmella in the past. However, in this past episode of Smackdown, Graves spoke critically about Carmella and Truth’s 7 second dance break.

Only time will tell if Carmella has truly turned face or not. But in the mean time, what do you think? Is the evidence conclusive, or are these coincidences?

Debuts in WWE

Is anyone else disappointed that we were told which brand Auska is headed to? I would have rather been surprised at her Raw debut. Because of social media, there is hardly ever an element of surprise anymore when it comes to wrestling storylines. Even with the Hardys, we all knew they were debuting, even though we didn’t really know for sure until their music dropped. That’s part of the problem with wrestling today. There is not enough separation between the fans and the show. They’re breaking kayfabe too often. Due to leaks, we already know everything that’s going to happen before it happens. We don’t need the company telling us more, like who’s debuting and where they’re going.