MR. TITO STRIKES BACK – How SummerSlam 2013 Changed Everything in the WWE + GLOW Season 2 Review

WWE

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Welcome back to the most bold and beautiful column experience online here exclusively at LordsofPain.net and no where else. Happy 4th of July, everyone! With today being a holiday, let’s do something special for today’s column… Let’s escape the current WWE scene because as I saw from all of your comments below Results posts, Tweets, and message board posts… Y’all didn’t enjoy this week’s edition of Monday Night RAW. Neither did I, as 2 Roman Reigns matches + Braun Strowman vs. Kevin Owens did nothing to help RAW draw larger numbers. That’s scary and should cause the WWE to send a BRINKS truck to Brock Lesnar‘s home to actually work more dates. Or hell, make “full time” Ronda Rousey work more dates. How about that?

Whatever… Let’s escape that horrid reality and go back in time…

I don’t like to write retro columns, as my bread & butter is discussing relevant or current topics… But what I’m about to write today will come FULL CIRCLE to what you’re seeing in the current WWE product. Something happened during the Fall of 2013 that changed the WWE that you see today. In other words, major decisions were made by WWE officials following the buyrate numbers of SummerSlam 2013 that caused significant changes in the WWE’s creative decisions and wrestlers pushed. Following the receipt of buyrate numbers, as Pay Per Views still existed back then, Vince McMahon and fellow WWE officials met at production meetings and made major sweeping changes to their long-term plans. SummerSlam 2013 was headlined by CM Punk vs. Brock Lesnar and John Cena vs. Daniel Bryan but only did 296,909 buys versus SummerSlam 2012’s 358,000 with that show being headlined by Brock Lesnar vs. Triple H.

Now, what I’m about to discuss is a mixture of things at my disposal… Certainly, insider reports at the time created by the Meltzers, Kellers, Scherers, etc. of the world have written on the backstage reports of the time extensively. What we also have is CM Punk‘s first hand account of the events of 2011-2014 from November 2014 that the WWE’s physician tried to sue over and but lost against Punk (upholding Punk’s opinions of that era). But also, I had an older source contact me and we discussed recent WWE stuff. This individual was a road agent during the first brand split era and would feed me stories (that I reported in my columns) about the pure hatred between HHH and Edge, Brock Lesnar becoming a disgruntled employee during 2003, and some of Randy Orton’s backstage problems. He still has a few connections with WWE from the 2011-2014 era that CM Punk spoke extensively about and he actually told me that what Punk said was nearly 100% accurate. He advised me that Punk is a man who doesn’t lie and there was much more to the backstage story that others haven’t realized or heard about.

Speaking of CM Punk, our story actually starts with him… The “Summer of Punk” was when CM Punk performed the unscripted “pipebomb” promo and set the wrestling world on fire before his Money in the Bank 2011 match with John Cena. Punk’s contract was about to legitimately expire and plans for John Cena during 2011 were to remain WWE Champion until SummerSlam 2011 where he’d drop the title to Alberto Del Rio. WWE had a tour of Mexico planned during the Fall of 2011 and they wanted to show off Del Rio as the WWE Champion to help grow the product there. With Punk on the way out, this was just a “filler” Pay Per View match for Cena to obviously win to build momentum towards SummerSlam 2011. Then, Punk delivered the “Pipebomb” promo and it caused not just the wrestling world to buzz, but the several sports outlets as well. RAW viewership started ticking upward heading into the Money in the Bank 2011 Pay Per View. Seems like fans were tuning in to see what CM Punk would boldly say next.

But this is not a story about the “Summer of Punk”. The bigger issue is what happened afterward, specifically with CM Punk’s relationship with emerging Executive Vice President Triple H. Back then, HHH was training to eventually become EVP of Talent Relations by mid 2012, EVP of Creative by late 2013, and also assuming more duties for live shows. He was dedicated and probably one of the few true insomniacs who could follow the work ethic of Vince McMahon to operate the WWE daily and with a heavy road schedule. During that “Pipebomb”, CM Punk referred to Triple H as the “doofus son-in-law” and then followed that up weeks later by mocking Triple H’s film role in The Chaperone. From what my source told me in the past, both Triple H and Stephanie are very sensitive to comments made about them and have no problems seeking revenge in some form. They had various backstage sources listening in on wrestler conversations during the 2000s, I was told, and those snitches would report back to HHH/Stephanie for anything derogatory that was said.

After SummerSlam 2011, we were supposed to have a CM Punk vs. Kevin Nash/Triple H storyline was supposed to continue throughout the Fall. As you’ll recall, CM Punk escaped a referee decision by “special guest referee” Triple H in that SummerSlam 2011 match with John Cena but mysteriously, Kevin Nash appears after and attacks CM Punk. This allowed Alberto Del Rio to cash in the Money in the Bank briefcase to become WWE Champion. After that incident, it was supposed to create a feud with Kevin Nash that would lead into a feud with the new “Chief Operating Officer” on television, Triple H to possibly lead into a big match at Survivor Series 2011, it was reported. But somehow, Kevin Nash “didn’t get cleared by doctors” and the Triple H match was rushed up to WWE Night of Champions 2011 Pay Per View by September, the PPV that immediately followed SummerSlam 2011. In other words, about 3 months of build for Survivor Series 2011 was erased and rushed into 1 month by WWE Creative. And Triple H won that match following a few weeks of heated promos where it appeared Triple H got a bit personal in his words against Punk. CM Punk never had a rematch following Night of Champions event.

That is where things begin to change backstage because reportedly, CM Punk began to go directly to Vince McMahon for anything creative, skipping over any possible discussions with other WWE officials, Stephanie/Triple H for Creative, and other Creative Team writers. It would be like if you worked at a Corporation and you were a staff member… Instead of discussion matters with lower level or mid-level managers, you go directly to the company’s CEO/President to discuss matters. That is not how an organizational chart is built, but by late 2011, CM Punk felt betrayed by Triple H. During Punk’s November 2014 Podcast with Colt Cabana, Punk is repeatedly referring to discussions he had with and promises made by Vince McMahon to validate what he was doing by going directly to Vince for everything. Then on Triple H‘s Stone Cold Podcast discussion with Steve Austin, HHH alluded to anytime he tried to discuss something with Punk, he seemed like he wanted nothing to do with Triple H or put him off as if “everything was fine”. Because Punk would go directly to Vince for everything creative, this created backstage issues and tension with Triple that would probably haunt Punk later.

CM Punk between late 2011 through early 2014, just before he departed, was going directly to Vince McMahon for most Creative decisions. At first, this was OK because it created a decent bond as Vince McMahon likes to have a personal relationship with many of his WWE Champions. My source suggested to me that is how CM Punk earned a lengthy WWE Title reign because he was open to some of Vince’s character suggestions and the trade-off would be that CM Punk would “cool down” some of the rhetoric about the Rock appearing with the company part-time. That’s why Punk was a “company man” when Rock vs. John Cena headlined Wrestlemania 28 despite CM Punk being WWE Champion. Backstage relations between CM Punk and Vince were good through early to mid 2012… Probably because a Wrestlemania 29 “main event” promise was made to Punk for 2013. All good so far…

2013 rolls around and things change… That or Vince McMahon lied to CM Punk about that Wrestlemania 29 headlining promis, take your pick. CM Punk thought that he was going to sneak out a win against the Rock at Royal Rumble 2013 but that booking was reportedly changed last second to the Rock winning the WWE Title instead. With last second knowledge of this news, that’s kind of why the Punk vs. Rock match at Rumble 2013 is somewhat lackluster. Punk is beginning to see his dreams of headlining a Wrestlemania event going down the tubes. But hey, he could regain that WWE Title at Elimination Chamber 2013, right? Wrong… Lost again to the Rock. CM Punk went from believing that a Triple Threat match between himself, John Cena, and the Rock at Wrestlemania 29 was possible to not at all. Knowing that he was going to lose again, you can see the body language of CM Punk going negative to cause the second match with the Rock to become underwhelming as well. The company wanted the Rock to look great heading into Wrestlemania and were reportedly disappointed in how Punk treated those matches. Then again, Punk was disappointed in how WWE officials treated him by making false promises and discarded him for a part-timer. He wanted that Wrestlemania main event match badly! It was a goal that he had as a professional wrestler for years.

Punk then took the mentality of “I’ll show them” and put all of his efforts into making CM Punk vs. the Undertaker into a show-stealing match of Wrestlemania 29. It was an incredible match that saw Punk bumping for everything that the Undertaker threw at him and creative efforts that Punk/Heyman gave leading up to that match were spectacular. By most critics, Taker vs. Punk was deemed “match of the night”. Next up, Punk was given a match against Brock Lesnar at SummerSlam 2013. He was again scheduled to lose but he again had that “I’ll show them” mentality to him and put on a 5-Star effort in that match as awarded by most critics (“Match of the Year” for 2013, too). Based on the efforts that CM Punk just delivered to the Undertaker and Brock Lesnar, two marquee stars of the company, he was expecting something in return for Wrestlemania 30 during 2014…

But then, the SummerSlam 2013 buyrates came in… We’ll get back to his in a second.

The other match match of SummerSlam 2013 that co-headlined the show and actually main evented it was John Cena vs. Daniel Bryan. Bryan was an emerging babyface that was getting over throughout 2013 with the “YES!” chant and from getting the Team Hell No tag team over with Kane. Fans also felt sympathy for Daniel Bryan following the Wrestlemania 28 18 second destruction of Bryan by Sheamus during 2012. On top of all of that, John Cena began dating Nikki Bella while Daniel Bryan was dating his future wife and twin to Nikki, Brie Bella. This actually forged a great friendship between the two wrestlers and John Cena went politically at-bat for Bryan for that SummerSlam 2013 match. One of the few times that he has done that for a wrestler to put over, particularly for a World Title… During 2013, the Main Event scene was uncertain as WWE officials were “over” CM Punk following his 2011-2013 WWE Title run and were disappointed by his Rock matches (see where that comes back to bite him?). Developmental wasn’t replenishing the WWE roster as many would hope under John Laurinaitis, hence his 2012 exit… But FCW and early NXT did provide the WWE with this new group called the Shield during late 2012 which were exciting as a group.

And you have to remember that this is 2013… WWE officials, including Vince McMahon, weren’t so sure of Brock Lesnar just yet, notably making him a part-time WWE Champion. They liked his 3 match feud with Triple H but wanted to see more before making a part-timer become a World Champion. The irony of that now is that the WWE is OK with having Brock barely show up as Champion here in 2018. Back then, WWE Title for Lesnar wasn’t a thought just yet… Until this CM Punk SummerSlam 2013 match happened and the credit for Punk’s bumping and making the match look good was given to Lesnar. That match began to ignite some possibilities for 2014 (like the Undertaker match-up)…

Getting back to John Cena, he pushed hard backstage for Daniel Bryan to get the SummerSlam 2013 match and WWE officials actually listened. WWE Officials, back then, were somewhat sour on Bryan based on how he reacted when a neck stinger during RAW match with Randy Orton that was called short due to injury concerns. Backstage following that match, Bryan actually shouted at Triple H for stopping that match. That backstage action PLUS seeing how Randy Orton looked physically, side-by-side with Daniel Bryan, began to change creative plans for SummerSlam 2013. Fine, John Cena… You can have your match with Daniel Bryan and you can drop the WWE Title to him… But Money in the Bank winner Randy Orton is cashing in to steal the WWE Title thanks to a “special guest referee” Triple H causing a screwjob.

The Creative Team plans for the Fall of 2013 would see Randy Orton vs. Daniel Bryan matches happening repeatedly (which did happen) before Daniel Bryan could possibly seek revenge on Triple H at Survivor Series 2013 (which didn’t happen). Those were the initial plans in place… Sounds like 2011 all over again?

Following SummerSlam 2013, things began to change backstage. For one, John Cena tore his triceps muscle and would require surgery to repair. Thus, your former WWE Champion would be out for a considerable length of time. That would cause WWE officials to begin thinking about the Main Event scene.

Then, the SummerSlam 2013 buyrates came in… 296,909 buys versus SummerSlam 2012’s 358,000.

It was in production meetings with Vince McMahon and top WWE officials where plans began to significantly change. Blame was placed 100% on CM Punk and Daniel Bryan for not helping the SummerSlam 2013 buyrate remain steady instead of losing over 60,000 buys. The question of WHO should headline the WWE in the years to come was brought up repeatedly at these meetings, notably as John Cena was injured and not getting any younger. It didn’t seem like the Rock was ever coming back, either, as he was injured at Wrestlemania 29. And that’s when 3 names were pitched:

(a) Brock Lesnar – looked great at SummerSlam 2013, faith restored. Triple H had enough confidence in him after 3 matches, too.

(b) Batista – Triple H reported that after filming Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, Dave had real interest in coming back to the WWE for a run.

(c) Roman Reigns – Vince McMahon’s personal favorite developmental wrestler whom he hand picked to be the 3rd member of the Shield.

Back then, with the desperation SummerSlam 2013‘s disappointing numbers and John Cena‘s injury, everybody agreed. There weren’t any debates over Roman Reigns back then because he looked fine in Tag Matches and any inexperience that he had could be hidden within the group. The Shield was over and their big moment was always helping to set Roman up with the Powerbomb spot. There wasn’t a question of Roman’s inexperience then because the thought was that the Shield was over and thus breaking out each wrestler would help each wrestler retain heat… Initially, it did… Nobody but me cried about the back-to-back WWE Title match opportunities that Roman received during mid-2014 after the Shield broke up and also that Randy Orton defeat at SummerSlam 2014. It wasn’t until the WWE handed Roman Reigns that Slammy Award for “Wrestler of the Year” that WWE fans began to truly rebel. Then, Roman wins the 2015 Rumble match and fans really rebel… They began to see how handpicked Roman was and his inexperience, in the ring and on promos, wasn’t complementing the big push that he received.

Getting back to Daniel Bryan and CM Punk. Punk was done and in fact, he would be the sacrificial lamb to begin Roman Reigns‘s push. Punk saw the tea leaves early, as backstage officials kept telling him “whatever you do, don’t make Roman Reigns look bad” in his matches. Punk probably knew that his time was coming as the CM Punk vs. the Shield storyline called for him to defeat Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose but actually LOSE to Roman Reigns in an early 2014 singles match. In other words, the other 2 members of the Shield couldn’t beat him but Roman could. Then, the Royal Rumble 2014 plans arrived… CM Punk had an expectation, based on many promises made to him by Vince McMahon directly, that he’d “headline” Wrestlemania soon. Not this year… Punk was eliminated midway into the match and it was Roman Reigns who served to be runner-up in the Rumble Match against Batista. That’s right, Triple H’s handpicked free agent won the Rumble and was now booked to wrestle Randy Orton to headline Wrestlemania 30.

Punk was pissed and that was his last night wrestling with the WWE. On the RAW that followed, he had a heated discussion with Vince McMahon which Vince invited Triple H to also attend. In response to CM Punk charging WWE officials with false promises made to him, Vince and Triple H responded that he’d “co-headline” Wrestlemania 30 in a match against Triple H… Reportedly, Punk was going to win that match or at least that was the initial plans told to him through January 2014. CM Punk would not hear any of that, as in his mind (and everyone else’s), headlining Wrestlemania meant wrestling on the FINAL match of the show. He was pissed because he politely held off from headlining Wrestlemania 28 during 2012 as WWE Champion and was denied promised opportunities to headline Wrestlemanias 29 and 30 for 2013-2014. And he left and never looked back… As Punk would describe during November 2014, he had some heated words for Triple H at that meeting and brought up the whole 2011 scenario with HHH/Nash where they buried him. CM Punk would also describe how irritated he was about the handling of his friend, Daniel Bryan, when Punk left during early 2014.

Following SummerSlam 2013‘s buyrate being reported, Daniel Bryan was doomed as a headliner. Suddenly, those “Triple H vs. Daniel Bryan – Survivor Series 2013” plans were thrown out and Randy Orton moved on to other feuds as WWE Champion. Daniel Bryan was soon shoved into the Wyatt Family storyline and even lost a big match against Bray Wyatt at Royal Rumble 2014. By the way, Bryan didn’t even enter the 30 Man Rumble match later in the card and that helped create massive boos for Batista when he won the match (poor Rey Mysterio caught friendly fire of that as the #30 entrant). The Daniel Bryan depushing had been completed as well.

As you can see, following those WWE production meetings that discussed the SummerSlam 2013 buyrate, the superstar landscape was about to change and it was “out with the old” for CM Punk and Daniel Bryan.

Then, the fans spoke out during 2014 with dissatisfaction… Batista was NOT well received by WWE fans as a babyface wrestler. They wanted Bryan and began being very vocal during Batista’s matches. On top of that, the “YES!” chant began appearing at other sporting events. WWE began to realize their error especially after the RAW viewership numbers of an Orton vs. Batista match came in… Thus, the booking plans were changed, once again, for Wrestlemania 30 and Daniel Bryan was rigged into that WWE Title match. Bryan was champion but it wasn’t as if WWE officials had full faith in him as champion. He got to wrestle Kane immediately after Wrestlemania 30 instead of the WWE Champion that he didn’t pin at Wrestlemania 30 in Randy Orton.

Plans were made to have Bryan remain champion throughout the summer and then get SQUASHED by Brock Lesnar at SummerSlam 2014. However, Bryan got injured and had drop the title… Poor John Cena was inserted into that same SummerSlam 2014 slot against Lesnar and the booking was kept at being a SQUASH. Cena was destroyed in that match, which makes me wonder if that was a payback for his SummerSlam 2013 politics of getting Bryan into that WWE title match? Or maybe the WWE wanted to perform a clean break from John Cena as their top guy in order to start pushing Roman Reigns and Brock Lesnar hard as their top stars. You know, to build up that Wrestlemania 31 headlining match-up.

Following Wrestlemania 30, the Shield led by Roman Reigns, pushed clearly as their top guy as the match results showed, feuded with the reunited Evolution team of Triple H, Batista, and Randy Orton. The matches were spectacular yet the whole goal of the feud was to not just put over the Shield, but to make Roman appear as the clear front-runner of the group. After all, Reigns was the ONLY Shield member who could defeat CM Punk and was also runner-up in the 2014 Royal Rumble. During mid-2014, WWE fans bought it… They were OK with Roman getting 2 straight WWE Title matches on Pay Per Views following the Shield’s break-up and then were OK with him getting a big profile feud with Randy Orton at SummerSlam 2014. Everything seemed to be going just OK with Roman…

Then he got hurt with a hernia injury that caused him to miss 3 months of action from late September 2014 through December 2014. Maybe a real “WHAT IF” situation, as who knows if Roman Reigns had legitimate momentum back then or not. Maybe he did? Maybe that’s what WWE was seeing during 2014 via merchandise sales, reactions, quarterly RAW segments, etc. that convinced them to go “all in” on Roman for 2015 and beyond?

Roman Reigns misses 3 months of action to end 2014 but was actually awarded “Wrestler of the Year” for the 2014 Slammy Awards. Yes, that is a fictional award and is not consistently given out by the WWE, but it sent a message to fans where the WWE’s thoughts were on their wrestlers. Then, Reigns entered a feud with the Big Show and based on most critical reviews of the time, those matches were NOT well received. I remember listening to a Podcast between Jim Ross and Steve Austin where they questioned whether either wrestler “knew what psychology was”. Ouch.

3 months out with an injury and terrible Big Show matches were a “recipe for disaster” for the 2015 Royal Rumble event. Roman Reigns won the match but was met with LOUD boos. Making matters worse, Daniel Bryan was actually back from injury and was actually in that very 2015 Royal Rumble match. Bryan entered 10th into the Rumble but didn’t last long. Bray Wyatt tossed him out and that made it a 2nd Rumble Pay Per View in a row where Wyatt “owned him”. That Rumble event was also when Big Show and Kane teamed up and eliminated multiple individuals. Lots of bad feelings all around and it all piled onto Roman Reigns in the end as the winner of the 2015 Rumble Match. To be fair to Roman, much of that was out of his control and should have been better controlled by WWE officials.

The boos kept continuing throughout early 2015 and heading into Wrestlemania 31 On top of that, Brock Lesnar‘s 2-year extension was about to expire following that Wrestlemania. Plans were made during 2014 to have Roman Reigns score a big win over Brock Lesnar with the expectations that Lesnar was leaving the WWE to return to UFC. However, on the Tuesday before Wrestlemania 31, Brock Lesnar announced a 3 year contract extension on ESPN‘s Sportscenter. Wrestlemania 31’s plans were quickly changed from Roman defeating Lesnar cleanly to Seth Rollins cashing in his Money in the Bank briefcase. Because Lesnar re-signed with the company, that continued his monster push that started from that SummerSlam 2013 great match with CM Punk even though that 3 year extension expired and WWE has been paying Lesnar on appearances since Wrestlemania 34 in 2018. He is still WWE Universal Champion to this day and the ongoing dislike created by WWE fans for Reigns during early 2015 may have blossomed to keep Reigns from ever defeating Lesnar. Lesnar retained his WWE title against Roman Reigns at Wrestlemania 34 and Greatest Royal Rumble while the SummerSlam 2018 match might be off (I bet it still happens).

But that is how we got here, folks… Major turn of events that happened during the Fall of 2013 caused major changes in the WWE that you see to this day:

(1) Disappointing efforts by CM Punk against the Rock (according to WWE officials).

(2) John Cena tearing his triceps muscle.

(3) Satisfaction with Brock Lesnar’s matches not just with Triple H, but his CM Punk match at SummerSlam 2013

(4) SummerSlam 2013’s buyrate numbers coming in as disappointing and Punk/Bryan were blamed.

This column, in particularly as I look back and realize on history now… I’ll be fair to Roman Reigns in that his 3 month hernia injury suffered from September 2013 through December 2013 may have hurt his momentum. Had Roman not been injured, he could have kept his feud with Randy Orton going or worked with other superstars gain more confidence in the ring. Instead, he returns to be immediately named “Wrestler of the Year” for the 2014 Slammy Awards and is shoved into an awful feud with the Big Show. That, and it’s NOT Roman’s fault that fans had unresolved issues with how WWE Creative handled Daniel Bryan during 2013-2014 (hell, even 2012). Roman, last I checked, was not a member of the WWE Creative Team.

Now – What happened during the rest of 2015-2018 regarding Roman Reigns where he hasn’t made the best of his opportunities, that’s where my criticisms remain. He has gone on to headline 3 more Wrestlemania’s following the Wrestlemania 31 “decision” against Triple H, Undertaker, and Brock Lesnar again. He beat John Cena 100% clean at No Mercy 2017. He has dominated the rest of the WWE roster, even owning several World Champions in non-title matches. Since late 2014, we’ve heard nothing but WWE announcers fawning over him and endless favorable booking has been granted to him. With all of these resources, has the wrestler himself, Roman, actually improved to complement the favorable treatment? That’s the real question that should be asked… Did he ever improve or regain confidence following September 2014 when he endured that hernia injury and was out for 3 months?

But that is for my other columns to discuss… Happy 4th of July, everyone!

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REVIEW: GLOW – Season 2

As a bonus, let me give you my quick review of GLOW – Season 2 from Netflix.

In my opinion, the show took a step back from Season 1. AS I SAY THAT, I’m not suggesting that it was a horrible show… It just wasn’t as “good” as Season 1.

From Season 1, you saw the female performers and the promoter trying to learn the pro wrestling business and figure out how to get a company on television. From a wrestling standpoint, it was genuine as they talked about how characters work and how the wrestling business operates. That, and the underlying tension between Ruth and Liberty Bell felt real. Alison Brie is a tremendous actress and in my opinion, she really carries this show to new levels. In my opinion, she carried Season 2…

Season 2 was too dominated by Liberty Bell being a complete trainwreck personally and also trying to push her starpower onto the GLOW promotion. In my opinion, it was too much especially as the “payback” of her personal life and producer role going to her head never felt met. Even after another confrontation with Brie, it was sort of just left there and everybody moved on as if nothing really happened. The tension between Ruth and Bell that fueled Season 1 was only briefly there for Season 2 and then it disappeared for good. And then you had Episode 8 which was the WORST episode of the entire series. It was nothing but GLOW program sketches performed by the wrestlers and they were terribly unfunny. That episode was extremely hard to get through.

But the wrestling itself was a downgrade. In the first season, the in-ring stuff was starting to look real and you could see how far along the ladies were on their training. For much of Season 2, however, the moves lacked any realism and would make most wrestling fans cringe as if they were watching a backyard wrestling event. It wasn’t until the LAST episode where a few experienced pros stop by that the in-ring action looked really good. The last episode, in my opinion, was where the show shined as the storylines and in-ring action made for a great watch. It just seemed like we took 6 episodes of Liberty Bell drama + a throwaway Episode 8 just to get to a satisfying conclusion of Season 2.

If you really liked Season 1, then definitely watch Season 2. At only 5 hours (10 episodes at 30 minutes each), it’s a quick viewing experience to see where all of your favorite characters are going. But be warned, it’s not as good as the first season but the show ends extremely well. As you’re limping along through the first 6 episodes and endure the BAD episode 8, just realize that there is gold at the end of the inconsistent rainbow. Season 2 sets up Season 3 quite well and that’s a good thing to redeem things in the future.

Alison Brie and Marc Maron are tremendous in their roles and their chemistry makes this show work even through the weaker episodes. By the end of the season, good stuff awaits you on their character development. Furthermore, there is a “MeToo” moment that certainly has today’s culture influencing a show meant to be set in the 1980s. However, what was more stunning to see was the reaction of another female character to the victim of harassment. That was SHOCKING to see and gives you an idea why such sexual harassment or even assault went unreported for a long time in Hollywood. Really well done yet educational turn of events to hopefully make many understand the “MeToo” movement better (or in other words, being able to see why harassment was enabled for so long in Hollywood).

Overall, I give it a grade of a [ B ], whereas I would give the first show an [ A- ] if I had to.

Again, and I don’t want to rob anyone of their own personal enjoyment of this experience… But all I’m saying with MY review is that I enjoyed the first season more than the second.

SO JUST CHILL… ‘TIL THE NEXT EPISODE!

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© Mr. Tito and LordsofPain.net – 1998-2018

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