Sunday, February 22, 2009

Christian: Captain Charisma and his lackluster crew

If you don't know by now, Christian is a member of the ECW brand, after making his triumphant, yet bland, return a few weeks ago. I say bland because of not just Todd Grisham's reaction (where's the enthusiasm, you hack?), but also of WWE's handling of the situation. No vignettes, no commercials, nothing. He just shows up to interrupt Jack Swagger one day to declare his return and his need for the ECW title. Whoopee! That's a real step up for the returning Christian, right? Some say that this is a blessing for him, while others a curse. Me? It' s a little of both in my book, with the situation out of balance in the wrong direction.

How is this a blessing for Christian? He has a chance to headline a himself....for the very first time. There's no major players that are going to trip him up and make him look inferior. He has his talents, his peeps, and his charisma to captain the S.S. ECW for himself and others. This proves to be better than have him be in a makeshift feud with someone even remotely popular on the rise. I don't see Christian surviving that exchange. Throw in an actual major title to hunt, and Christian on ECW ain't half bad.

How is this a curse? He goes from main-eventing a rival promotion's PPVs to main-eventing the #3 brand the WWE has to offer. Christian has no protection on that end. He had someone in TNA start him up (Scott D'Amore) , but once that person disappeared, Christian's star power disappeared. Then, he was just another working grunt with nothing special about him, whatsoever. After some months and even a year of the same old nonsense, Christian figured he was better off making money back in the WWE in an attempt to have a better living for himself and his family. So, off he went to the WWE. What did he get for his trouble when he returned? A spot on the lowliest of the brands with the lowliest of the wrestlers. It's no different than being made captain of a river barge than a submarine or something. Now, that's what I call getting cursed. The only thing is this: the curse is two-fold.

First, let's look at the lackluster crew our captain of charisma has to work with. He's got an ECW original in Tommy Dreamer who hasn't won a major match in years, if not months. He's got Finlay whose only claim to fame is fathering a midget who has worn out his "Mini-Me" mentality. He's got a freakish wrestler in The Boogeyman that, despite his unorthodox wrestling ways, can still be beaten by someone who even remotely finds him scary. He's got the Miz and Morrison, who are a few choice wins away from abandoning ship for greener pastures. He's got the powerhouse, Mark Henry, that seems more like a weighted anchor because of his limited success rather than forward progress. Lastly, he's got a plethora of new wrestlers on deck that have enough talent to get them off the show (Evan Bourne, D.J. Gabriel, Tyson Kidd who will be spoken of on the first week of March), a little talent to even get noticed (Ricky Ortiz), or no talent whatsoever because they are still new or are new with nothing to show for it (Gavin Spears, Braden Walker). Not the best crew to be working with, I gather. In fact, Christian might very well ask himself the question I posed at the end of my "Team Extreme" analysis about who he'd want on his team ultimately when it came to making waves. I bet you I'd know who he'd choose. Then again, I could be wrong, but that's why a guess is a guess.

Secondly, the curse Christian has to endure is the curse of being underrated. How is this so? Allow me to articulate this point. I have just discovered that Smackdown head writer Michael Hayes wanted Christian to be the one who has been assaulting Jeff Hardy. However, since this plan was exposed by way of the Internet, its shock value was gone, leaving Vince very mad and eager to change the direction of that specific storyline. This put both Hayes and Christian at a loss. While Hayes is bouncing back with another possible candidate for the assault (Matt Hardy), Christian fell further downward into obscurity as Vince McMahon once again put the screws to him by placing him on ECW. This was due to a few things. Vince will punish whomever competes against him for as long as he wants as a sign of their paying dues for the company. So, Christian is paying some dues right now, but he's also being saddled with a harsh reality in doing so. Vince, once again, is seeing Christian as an uneventful wrestler with no magic to him. He once said Christian had the worst head-shots (photos) he has ever seen. Yet, Christian became an overnight sensation of sorts regardless of his opinion. Has that opinion changed in Vince's view? No. Now, Christian will be paying for it as time continues as Vince sees fit. Sucks to be underrated, as Christian is now fully where Matt Hardy was before his scarring heel turn.

So, it looks like Christian will be captaining this river barge known as ECW whether he likes it or not. If he's drafted elsewhere, the barge might very well sink to the bottom of the ocean of failed experiments in wrestling, but it won't. You see, there's a strong chance that Christian is virtually chained to the ship, so if it sinks, so does he. But, if anything, he's got the ability to keep it afloat, despite the lackluster crew. In fact, he's going to need that ability more than ever. I just find it funny how Christian can go from one situation in the WWE where he's underrated to the same situation elsewhere and back to that very same situation when returning to the WWE. Some things never change....much to the chagrin of the many "peeps" and "coalition members" that support this fine athlete. Well, make room on the barge, Christian, because I'm sure they'll be more than happy to sink with you than to watch you sink on your own. Heck, they'll even help keep the boat afloat, if you like. If only Vince would see that and transfer Christian to a more stable wrestling "boat". Nah! Vince needs fans he can change, not fans that are....well....actual fans.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

ECW needs a hero...and Christian is going to give it to them!

Initially, this was going to be about Matt Hardy and his Royal Rumble actions, but his departure from the ECW brand made that impossible. So, I thought of blogging about how ECW would need a new hero now that ECW is without a key heroic figure like Matt, or C.M. Punk, or RVD to help fend off the evils in ECW. You see, wrestling has always been pre-imminently about a good guy versus a bad guy. It always has been and it always will be. Now, in ECW, at least this version, there has been a top star that represents the "heroic good guy" that will sort of be the leading representative of ECW, since a bad guy being a representative is virtually counter-productive to business as well as viewership. When Matt Hardy defected, there were only 6 candidates for the job. There was Tommy Dreamer, ECW's heart and soul from the original days, Finlay, the fighting Irishman, the Boogeyman, the worm-eating freak, Evan Bourne, the high-flying dynamo, Ricky Ortiz, the laid-back, rather ambitious pseudo-slacker, and D.J. Gabriel, the well-built, British dancing machine. After sifting through these possibilities, I thought that Evan Bourne would do a fine job in this role, until this past Tuesday. Jack Swagger wanted to get his hands on Hornswoggle, Finlay's "son". He wanted to hurt that creepy, little, b**tard, but instead got a familiar one that we have all been waiting for. Jack Swagger got Captain Charisma, the host of the "Peep Show", Christian. The hero has arrived.

It was at that instant that I knew who would be the hero that ECW needed to cover for Matt Hardy's departure, RVD's release, and C.M. Punk's promotion to Raw. Christian was going to be the guy to save ECW from the arrogance of Jack Swagger, the domineering power of Mark Henry, the cockiness of the Miz and Morrison, and the brutality of Paul Burchill and his catty sister, Katie Lea. Okay, maybe he can't stop all of them just like that, but just as Matt Hardy was a thorn in some of, if not all of their sides, Christian can and will be the same. Hardy outsmarted the likes of Henry, took it to Miz and Morrison in tag action almost always, and could have beaten, if he hadn't already, Paul Burchill. Can Christian replicate that? Yes, he can. Just like Matt Hardy, he's built himself a cult following that has earned him main-event status before he left abruptly due to contract issues. He main-evented against Batista on Smackdown. That's huge, in my book. But, does he really have the credentials to be that top hero? Well, compared to his fellow heroes, I'd say yes.

Compared to Dreamer, Christian has a leg up only due to his ability. Both Dreamer and Christian are veritable veterans on ECW, and both have attained titles. However, Christian has won more matches than he's lost, unlike Dreamer. In fact, Christian can think like some of these heels. This is something Dreamer couldn't do if he tried, which is why he gets outsmarted and beaten every time. Also, don't sleep on Christian's abilities. He's a very accomplished wrestler. Add that to the seasoning he received in TNA and he's got a great pedigree to him. Seasoning is something Dreamer could definitely use, that's for sure.

As for Finlay, well, Finlay has more veteran instincts than Christian, no doubt. He's even more of an accomplished wrestler. However, this current iteration of Finlay...just doesn't cut it. As a main eventer, who can take him seriously with all the antics from Hornswoggle, let alone his incessant need to use the shillelagh? Once you neutralize either or both of them, or at least show that they have no affect on you, you got him beat. Look at Swagger's first outing against him. He got rid of Hornswoggle, then worked Finlay's arm, and eventually won the match. In fact, when neither came into play against Matt Hardy in a regular match, Hardy still won, head held high, as the then-ECW champion. That's not so consistent as a hero, due to his blatant weaknesses.

The Boogeyman? Well, he's creepy enough, and unorthodox enough, but if you put him against a wrestler that's not phased by his craziness, like say, Mark Henry or Big Daddy V, then the Boogeyman is as scary as a paper airplane drenched in water...not very scary at all. In fact, it's not even a matter of fear if you can weather his offense, force a mistake, and outsmart him. Yea, that's helpful.

As for Evan Bourne, Ricky Ortiz, or D.J. Gabriel, well, the general thing is that they are all new guys. Yes, so is Swagger, but he's already exerted and exhumed his qualities which have proven to be much more effective than these three. Gabriel does not look serious enough dominate or win a match. Ortiz, with all his energies, has shown that his skill is sloppy and somewhat ineffective. As for Evan Bourne, well, for his high-flying and rather amazing style, he's a cut above the rest. But, it's high-risk wrestling. He's one mistake or two away from losing a match. Also, be aware that he's still injured from a high-flying maneuver that he didn't manage well. You can just about count on Christian to do the job right against his opponents.

Yes, I know this little blog sounds like a "We love Christian" rant, but, how can you not go with him over these guys? He's got experience, skill, charisma (obviously), and the battle scars to show that the main event is just a big match away. However, I think one very important aspect of Christian's abilities was the crowd response he received when he showed up on ECW. The crowd cheered him right out of the building. Just like Matt Hardy and even Jeff, he's received that cult status response that is worthy of banking off of. The difference between Matt and Jeff, when dealing with Christian is this: just like Matt, he's a big hit with the 18-34 demographic. This is key for the WWE, as well as ECW, since that is the key demographic that can and will sway the ratings in the right direction. So, inherently, Christian is saving ECW's ratings by attempting to win back these viewers. This shouldn't be very difficult as a number of these fans supported previous heroes like RVD, Matt Hardy, and C.M. Punk. As soon as word gets out that Christian is back in action and on ECW, the WWE can only hope that the ratings will increase.

Oh, no! Jack Swagger is destroying the competition, Mark Henry is destroying everything, the Miz and Morrison are tearing up the egos of their opponents and Paul Burchill is looking to do some damage. This looks like a job for........Christian! His tasks are set before him. He has to be the top ECW star that previous ECW stars were. He has to be the standout wrestler that his fellow ECW faces can only hope to be. He has to save the show's 18-34 year old male viewers from changing the channel . This is quite a task for Christian, even with who and what he has to work with. So, this will prove to be quite a challenge. But if anyone can do it, leave it to Captain Charisma to save the day!

Tune in next week for part 2 of the Christian analysis as we cover how the captain of charisma on the S.S. ECW has quite the lackluster crew to work with, which can be a blessing and/or a curse. Don't miss it!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

The incomplete era of Jack Swagger

Well, some of my predictions have been coming true, in some way or another. Bam Neely was fired, Chavo was sent to SmackDown, Dreamer is making a last-ditch effort to be a top star again, and Jack Swagger is the ECW champion. He has the keys and tools to be a top star in the WWE, even by their standards. He's big, he's cocky, he's got the wrestling talent to grapple with the best of them, and he's got the look of a star. However, I still think he doesn't have it all yet. I mean, sure, his promo work is pretty good, his wrestling skills are showing great promise for the future, and his in-ring persona is also something to consider as a good thing going, but I don't think it's enough for him. I think he needs something more. I think he needs what some wrestlers are blessed with now, and what some wrestlers could have used. Jack Swagger needs what Umaga started with, Vladimir Kozlov should have had, and what Mike Knox can definitely use. Jack Swagger....needs a manager! There, I said it. It's not a bad notion, either, if done right...

There were so many great and notable managers over the years. They were the conspicuous cheerleaders to whatever wrestlers they supported. Some were sweet as sugar while others were as sour as lemons. Who could forget some of these masters of their craft? There's the sultry "Sensational" Sherri, the garishly guile Gary Hart, the sinister Mr. Fuji, the overly obnoxious Captain Lou Albano, the dastardly "Classy" Freddie Blassie, the wicked Grand Wizard, the annoyingly-energetic "Mouth of the South" Jimmy Hart, the underhanded "Doctor of Style" Slick, the scrawny and salty Bill Alfonso, the putrid yet sometimes powerful Paul Heyman (a.k.a. Paul E. Dangerously), the cleverly cunning J.J. Dillon, the high-pressured heat magnet, James E. Cornette, and the most notorious for his work, the boastful bad apple known as Bobby "The Brain" Heenan, just to name a few. I know some of you readers don't even know who these people are. Some of you know them all too well. If I were you and I didn't know who they were, I'd look into the WWE DVD about the greatest managers in wrestling history. It's worth the buy and the rent. The problem here is that, just like the art of tag team wrestling and cruiserweight competition, the art of good managing by good managers is just about lost in the WWE. This puts a lot of wrestlers on the rise in a precarious position. Without that extra boost of a manager, they have to rely solely on their own development, which might or might not work out for them. I think that Swagger might fall into this pit if the situation presented itself, as many a newcomer has fallen in this category. The ones that really have this problem are those who are known mostly for their ability. That's just not enough.

Swagger has had good promo work. There's no doubt about that, but there are some issues with it, such as his lisp. I don't know about you, but that can be brutal to hear. It does make him seem like a big kid at times, but so does his attitude. So, why not have a manager to oversee him so he doesn't get ahead of himself? It's perfect. With a manager hyping up his excellence all the time, and handling the day-to-day business while he keeps up his doings, it would be a can't-miss situation, at least in my opinion. Now, who could be the best guy for the job? Here's some people on the market to help with that.

There's Armando Estrada. He led Umaga to his first title, the Intercontinental Championship. He even partnered up with the McMahons to take it to Bobby Lashley. He even managed the ECW brand for a while before his departure from the WWE altogether. You can tell that he has the eye for a top prospect and most likely, the money to reel them in. It was a shame to see him leave the WWE. I always found him an entertaining heel that was capable of maybe even putting together a stable, along with getting a star over. With Swagger under his watch, Estrada could start quite the ruckus.

Matt Striker is also a very good candidate. Yes, he did manage Big Daddy V and Mark Henry, but that did not avail to much. Big Daddy V was shown the door eventually and Mark Henry didn't achieve the ECW title until after Striker left. Is that a fault against Striker or against his then-proteges? Perhaps it was because people knew what to expect from them, so defeating them wasn't that difficult. Swagger had the element of surprise when he started. No one knew what to expect from him, and they still don't. Striker can capitalize on this with his growing mental acumen. He would be the one to feed Swagger the information he needs to dissect his opponents. Brains and brawn, working side-by-side. That's quite a thought.

Here's an obscure one for you: Elijah Burke. He and Jack Swagger can talk about their natural gifts and athletic accomplishments. Burke will pull a Ricky Ortiz and swing his towel around, only he would cause quite a stir with the fans that don't like he or Swagger. I don't think it would fail as badly as his teaming up with Sylvester Terkay, for Swagger has the wrestling prowess to get some wins and look good doing it. Plus, both of their smiling ways would annoy fans greatly. The only problem is that Burke is a wrestler. Their partnership would be strained over his need to become the ECW champion. But, still, it's a good thing.

However, I think if there's someone who could do a great job with Swagger, it's gotta be the man who ushered in "The Next Big Thing". I'm thinking Paul Heyman. He's clever, devious, a great eye for talent, and a man who knows his wrestling. He helped build up the organization of ECW. He discovered the talent that no one would utilize. When that was all done, he entered the WWE trying to take it down as part of the Alliance (not a great situation), and after that, he discovered Brock Lesnar and lead him, undefeated to the WWE his rookie year. I would enjoy watching these guys together. It's too bad that Heyman will never enter the WWE again due to how he departed.

Now, Jack Swagger doesn't technically need a manager now, but he could definitely use one when he gets to Raw or Smackdown. Too many big guys show up to those brands, fresh out of the box, As they start to ascend, they only begin to descend no more than a few months into it. They get neutralized by established talent and then, it's out of sight and out of mind these guys go. It has happened to Snitsky, it is happening to Knox, and it could happen to Vladimir Kozlov. Can Swagger avoid all this? I think so, but most likely with the help of a manager. It's not something that can be thrown around willy-nilly. It has to be well-calculated. You can't just give him any old manager of sorts. The manager has to be captivating enough to draw attention to not just himself or herself, but also towards his or her client. He or she has to be mindful of the game at least and why it is or isn't wise to do certain things at certain times or at least has to look like it. It would be helpful if the person was a former wrestler or someone with experience.

I just think that someone like Jack Swagger should not just be left to what he has at this time. I say that because there's a lot of people who are like him or have been like him. Why not set him apart and give him a competent manager? It could help him in the long run, to the fullest. Plus, well, it can show that managing wrestlers does not have to be a dying art form. Maybe it's the old-schooler in me, but I'd like to see it. Anyone can have swagger, but when you're Jack Swagger, it's what you're all about. Why not accentuate it with someone to help protect your swagger? I don't know about you, but having someone massage an ego, bruised or no, is something to be pretty confident about, don't you think?

Sunday, February 1, 2009

ECW keeps it in the family

It's official. Paul Burchill and his sister, Katie Lea, are now part of the ECW family. They made the transition to the ECW brand about a month ago and have had quite a tumultuous start, to say the least. So far, Katie Lea has gone 1-0 by defeating Alicia Fox, while she's watched her brother get embarrassed by DJ Gabriel, Finlay, and the Boogeyman. Tough break, eh? Still, some of us wonder just what's the deal about this dynamic family duo and how they got here to begin with? How did they get into not just the WWE, but onto the ECW brand? Alas, that story is an interesting one. Once again, thanks Wikipedia.

Let's begin with big brother, shall we? His full name is Paul Kenneth Birchall. He is a former primary school teacher from Surrey, in England. He played professional rugby as a center, earning the nickname,"Ripper". Then, the pro wrestling bug bit him in 2001 when he entered the FWA (Frontier Wrestling Alliance) Wrestling training camp. It didn't take long before he impressed Mark Sloan, the man in charge of the camp.

Burchill then debuted in August of 2002, where he made an impact interfering in many matches, destroying whomever got in his way. As his career progressed, he became somewhat of a "Goldberg"-like character destroying his opponents and keeping a winning record. In May of 2003, Burchill's ability landed him a top British manager named Dean Ayass, who managed notable names like Robbie Brookside and Christopher Daniels. Ayass would state that people facing Burchill entered the ring at their own risk as he would not be held responsible for Burchill's bone-breaking abilities. By the end of that year, Burchill was proclaimed "Rookie of the Year" by both Total Wrestling and 1 Stop Wrestling. Burchill then continued his wrestling journey, fighting in such places like Frontier Wrestling Alliance, WXW, The Wrestling Alliance, International Wrestling Promotions and All Star Premier Promotions. He would become a champion on August 1, 2004, winning a three-way No Holds Barred match involving the Zebra Kid and Doug Williams. He then lost the belt in a Falls Count Anywhere match with D'Lo Brown on November 6 of that year, and later, he signed on to wrestle for the WWE. He received a standing ovation in one of his last matches before his departure where he teamed with Terry Funk to win a handicap match.

After his time in OVW, he went on the the Smackdown Brand with fellow countryman, William Regal to do tremendous amounts of damage as a team in a sort of veteran/protege team-up in 2005. During this run, Burchill was seen on television suggesting that he change his gimmick to "Pirate" Paul Burchill as he was connected to pirates by blood. Soon, he would be seen with a pirate's effects (clothes), eyeliner a la Jack Sparrow, a rope to swing from the stage with, numerous beads and treasures, and even two buxom wenches at his side (one was Shelly Martinez before she joined Kevin Thorn, the other was William Regal after agreeing to wear a dress as a wench after losing a match to Burchill). His pirate days would soon come to an end after a run-in with Mark Henry that left him injured and never sailing the Smackdown seas again.

Katie Lea's arrival was a bit different. Her name is actually Katarina Waters. At age 18, she started training in the NWA UK-Hammerlock promotion. This allowed her to be part of the ITV Meridian television show, "Trans-Atlantic Wrestling Challenge", which was a British/American tournament pitting the two countries against each other on January 4, 2000. After doing battle with a number of different wrestlers from the NWA, Katie won the Women's Championship cup. Afterwards, the sky was the limit for Katie as she wrestled virtually everywhere. She even fought WWE Hall of Famer "Sensational" Sherri Martel in Germany. However, her biggest triumph was wrestling for the Frontier Wrestling Alliance in 2002, the same year Burchill was getting his start, but as he set sail for the WWE in 2004, she left the FWA in 2004 as well due to personal reasons and took time off. During her run in the FWA, she met up with Hade Vansen, a future and now former WWE trainee. She also feuded with the likes of Sweet Saraya, Paul Travell, and the group, The Family. She would then return to wrestling in 2005 in the UK, and then she started fighting all around Europe, becoming France's Queen of Chaos Women's Champion and appearing in Italy's Nu-Wrestling Evolution promotion, fighting Vanessa Harding. When she returned in 2006 to the FWA, she helped Vansen win the Champions Series Final on February 5th. Vansen would later on win the FWA British Heavyweight Championship in the main event of this tourney.

Katie Lea then made her way to the WWE during May of 2006, signing a contract with OVW. After severing ties with the different promotions she was involved in, she debuted there defeating Melody and feuded with the likes of Serena Deeb, TNA's ODB, and former WWE Women's champion, Beth Phoenix. She then went on to win the OVW Women's Title on November 1st of that year and held it until June of 2007 after losing to ODB who was involved in a growing feud with Katie. She then started her own talk show in OVW called "Kat's Kradle", and later on took part in some tours of Europe in tag matches with the Smackdown Brand on September 5 of 2007.

So, how did these two get paired up? Funny you should ask. While Katie was doing some damage as on OVW diva ready to make the jump to the big time, Paul Burchill was rekindling his "Ripper"-style gimmick when he started wrestling and became this dominant threat. Upon seeing Burchill's improvement through rehabilitation and re-tooling and Katie Lea's style, beauty, and charisma, they were paired up as brother and sister. They debuted on Raw together early-to-mid last year as siblings with a daunting secret about their close relationship. As it turned out, they were two siblings who engaged in intimate dealings with each other, as if they were Commodus and Lucilla (from the movie, Gladiator). It was subtle, yet sultry. Seeing as how this would be very bad for their ratings, sponsors, and their move to TV-PG, the WWE scrapped that idea and just had them team up together. It's a shame, though, as Katie Lea reminds me of Lita in so many ways, that they could have easily made Burchill and Lea boyfriend and girlfriend, instead of brother and sister. Since the plan was 86ed, Burchill and Lea became the literal laughing-stocks of the RAW brand in which they were a part of. They had key losses left and right, and even Katie's outings were not so stellar as she had to struggle through matches here and there. After being literally forgotten on Raw, they were shipped to ECW and the rest is history.

Now, here's why this story is an interesting one. They go from top stars in their native England to laughing-stocks in the U.S. while being in the WWE. They go from holding gold to barely holding their own in matches. Burchill goes from dangerous Englishman to plucky pirate to rowdy ripper to relative reject losing much more matches than winning, while Lea struggles to hold a match together with relatively untalented divas and divas who have talent but are in as big of a wrestling pickle as she is. What does this all mean? Well, it means that once again two fine talents are squandered in the WWE horrendously while people are lead to believe that they are as horrendous as they are portrayed to be. This leads me to let you all in on a little secret: both wrestlers are HIGHLY underrated and need to be considered when the future of ECW is at stake. Why's that, you ask? It's because they can be a driving force in ECW when it comes to top heels.

You ask anyone who has seen Paul Burchill before the WWE, and they will tell you how different he is as a wrestler. They'll say how sound he is a wrestler, how technical he is and how powerful he is. They will tell you how he should be destined for very great things and is capable of great things. They'll be quick to defend Burchill and his wrestling ability on the spot. Now, does that sound like someone who has seen a complete loser? I don't think so.

As for Katie, come on!You're going to tell me she's a horrendous wrestler after feuding with not just some of the top female wrestlers in the world, from the NWA to the FWA? You're going to tell me she's crap after she's wrestled a legend like Sherri Martel? If she looks horrendous on t.v., it's because who she's wrestling with is not as good as her or is as restricted as she is. In fact, the same can be said about Burchill.

You see, Burchill and Lea have a problem. The problem is that they are probably two of the best up-and-comers on the WWE roster and are forced to curtail their efforts in an attempt to not outshine their co-workers. They, along with others like C.M. Punk, are stuck wrestling the "WWE" style of wrestling which curtails their abilities greatly. Let's not even look at the lack of luck Burchill has with gimmicks as his pirate gimmick was shelved because Vince couldn't spend time to research, let alone watch any "Pirates of the Caribbean" films. Katie Lea is just lucky enough to be reminiscent of Lita or I'd figure she'd just about be forgotten as well. Yet, beyond all that, they are two excellent wrestlers who are now stuck on ECW, and instead of putting them over as a top tandem of sorts, they are relegated into becoming the new "Gavin Spears" and "Braden Walker" by either losing or not even being shown as an interesting pair.

I can see Burchill becoming a top heel of sorts, terrorizing the likes of Evan Bourne, and I can even see Katie Lea slither her way into Tommy Dreamer's presence only to set up a beatdown by Burchill. These two can do great things in and out of the ring. Their talent speaks volumes. However, how can that be seen or found if they aren't given the chance to run with the ball? Now, their being on ECW can be a great chance of that. Fresh talent to fight, no pressure to be incredibly outstanding, just enough to secure a spot on one of the two top brands again, and some consistency with their gimmick should do just fine. However, while some might see this a chance to shine, others will see this as a chance to be forgotten. They go from a top brand to a 3rd-string one after literally being forgotten on television. Then, they start off on the losing end to virtually everyone that was on the way up. Nice start to a failed set of careers, eh?

Poor Paul Burchill, what are you going to do? The WWE just doesn't care about you. But, the opportunity is just to great to pass up, it's true. And as long as those zeroes are looking good, you'll stick around like glue. Katie, Katie, Katie, can the same be said for you? You're seen as inferior and you wrestle like your goo. You two are now together in this merry stew, so hope against all hope that you aren't hated like the flu (Yes, I'm a poet and I don't know it. I have a rhyme all the time. Yea, it's corny, but I'm trying to lighten the mood here).

So, before anyone reading this goes judging the "Burchills", remember this: they were not always like that, nor have they ever been. There's a reason terms like "underrated" are utilized these days. It's so people get in on watching who or what really has quality in a medium of pop culture and such. Let's just hope that someone important sees the quality of these two before the pink slips are passed out. Yea, I played this card before, but in these bad economic times and with Vince's lack of faith in the new president of the U.S., don't be surprised if he even ends up firing his wife, Linda.