Friday , 25 July 2014
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WWE Total Divas Pilot Review: Somehow Not The Worst Thing To Have Ever Aired On Television

There’s a point in every man’s life when they come to an impasse in which they question their own existence. I unfortunately have now reached that point prematurely. What in the world am I doing with my life? I’m reviewing “Total Divas” on the E! Network; what did I do to deserve this fate? Did I not pay proper penance to the wrestling gods for a crime I am unaware of? Is this my punishment; is there redemption at the end of the tunnel?

No, there is not. There is only The Bella Twins and they are the embodiment of my own personal hell.

Normally, I wouldn’t include a personal perspective in a review and shy aware from using “me, my, I, etc”. However, to truly allow my audience to understand the experience of watching this show first hand a more personal account is required.

After months of hype on WWE programming, weekly vignettes and Divas matches surrounding this series; it was finally time for the beginning of the pilot episode. There was no turning back now. From this point on, I had to stay positive and courageous. Surely, the show could end up actually being good right?

Denial

The show starts off with The Bellas boasting about their red carpet status and how they’re professional wrestlers despite being practically models, calling themselves “Broadway Slams”. Then, we are shown the more watchable members of the cast. The Fuckadactyls talk about Naomi (who goes by her real name Trinity in the show)’s backside and its use as an incredible weapon in the wrestling ring. Araine (known as Cameron on WWE programming) calls herself the feisty and personality filled one of the duo. Trinity’s boyfriend, Jimmy Uso, also appears to help the two train.

After that, our savior appears in the form of Natayla Niedhart (simply called Nattie for the most part in this) appears talking about how she is wrestling royalty. She is shown, with trainer Bill Demott and her dad watching, absolutely destroying a developmental understudy Diva in the ring. If the show is just this, I’d be perfectly alright with that.

Nikki Bella is then shown with her boyfriend and soon-to-be WWE Champion John Cena. What the show did rather well here was legitimately display the love the two share. Bryan and Brie are given the same treatment, to a lesser effect, while on a walk heading over to Cena’s mansion. Brie is shocked to see Nikki driving a new SUV that Cena had bought for her, which the twins absolutely mark out for.

Nattie hypes up the grueling schedule and importance of Wrestlemania week then she is told that she will not actually be working a match at the event. I could have told her that easily but she does take it to heart and said it made her feel devastated. She is instead forced to chaperon two new Divas and become their mentor. The emotion Nattie displays here is one that a wrestling fan can relate with and it feels very natural.

This is actually so far pretty decent, maybe this’ll be good after all.

Anger

Those two new Divas mentioned previously were JoJo and Eva Marie. They talk about their ambitions, being both scared but excited for what they’re coming into. Nattie tells Brie about how there are two newbies coming to join their ranks, which neither really approve of.

After both sets of women meet each other for the first time, Marie is asked by management to dye her hair blonde despite being Latin. She doesn’t take it well and displays some rage that she is now forced to make this decision; she’s not the only one whose going to be pretty angry soon. Nattie hates the idea too, thus furthering her seemingly boundless rage towards WWE management’s decision making.

Continuing on that theme, Nattie grinds her teeth as she babysits the newbies and Araine’s boyfriend Vincent. At the same time, The Funkadactyls and The Bellas had a lackluster Wrestlemania dress rehearsal which drove Araine into tears and Vincent into a rant. This was cringe-worthy, Vincent who might be in a mafia of some kind talked about beating Brodus Clay to a bloody pulp and making him sleep with the fishes. I think Clay would literally eat him before he had the chance. Though, Nattie eventually calms him down and the crisis is averted.

Now, I’m miffed that I didn’t get to see Brodus Clay cannibalize another man.

Bargaining

After a commercial break, The Bellas meet up with the new girls and talk about how Marie needs to be blonde and how she’s competition that needs to go away. That’s a little harsh but what can you expect? It’s the Bellas.

Araine and Trinity have an utterly pointless conversation where they discuss what happened the previous night; Araine instantly says “it doesn’t matter, whatever, I’m over it”. Concurrently, Marie and JoJo head to a salon to get the former’s hair color changed to blonde. Marie backs out of it though fearing her wonderful, deep personality would be hampered by having blonde hair.

Can we turn back now? What do I have to do to make this stop? I can change, I can be a better wrestling fan. We can go back, before this when things were simpler. Unfortunately, there is still a second half of this to go.

Depression

Marie, now with fully red hair, rides the red carpet with The Bella twins while Natalya has to actually do her job as a performer. While the poor Canadian prowrestler has to do interviews for the Wrestlemania weekend, the other four hookers parade around in trashy dresses and mingle with randoms in the back. I’m not sure what we’re supposed to feel here besides an incredible bout of utter depression. Anyone have any happy pills? Didn’t think so.

The twins from hell then embarrass and intimidate the newbies during the party, which clearly we needed to see as it is absolutely compelling and Emmy worthy television. After that, the harlequins gossip about their relationship problems and how Cena is not ready to marry Nikki. I wouldn’t be able to marry a demon from the earth’s core either but Cena’s a tougher guy than I.

Cena and Nikki have a personal conversation about their future which I’m not sure if it’s kayfabe or not since we really shouldn’t be watching this; nor should anyone care to watch this.

At Wrestlemania, despite the incredible rivalry The Bellas and Funkadactyls had, they were cut at the last minute from the card in favor for more time between CM Punk and Undertaker. All four participants are depressed as their hard work getting dressed for their match has now been in vain. The actors are sad, I’m sad that I’m watching this. It’s a very mutual feeling.

Acceptance

Saddening music is played as the Divas accept their un-importance and displacement from the card. At this point, I have accepted as well that this is a new series that could be around for awhile and though I wish it wouldn’t it’d be a fool’s errand.

The show was led in by an episode of Keeping Up With The Kardashians which most likely will provide Total Divas with a boost in ratings that could sustain it for the time being. The teaser trailer for next week’s show features a lot of drama which surprisingly looks like a good watch.

Also, what is entirely surprising about this whole show was that it wasn’t the worst thing to have ever aired on television like I had thought it was going to be. It wasn’t good by any stretch of the imagination but it wasn’t unwatchable. This series has now entered wrestling history and I can only hope that it doesn’t stain that same history with its existence.

Quote Of The Episode: “I wish I had a gun. I’d kill every single last one of them.” – Natalya’s inner thoughts.

Final Grade: D+

Let me know what you guys think of the review and show.

Thanks.

About Jacob Stachowiak

Wrestling writer since October 2011. I write about wrestling because it makes me feel all warm and cuddly inside. I don't use words like "work rate" or pretend I know any insider information. I'm just your above average writer who appreciates wrestling.
  • Marc Yeager

    So the show actually wasn’t terrible and I might actually watch it next week(which terrifies me) but on the subject of the article…4/10 didn’t call the Bella’s rampant Devil Harpies enough.

    But seriously, it was pretty entertaining.

  • Charlie Groenewegen

    Didn’t watch the show, but this review is the best thing ever of all-time in history of ever. And are you surprised that Fryegot (Lulz, sounds like an asian saying “faggot.” dat’s waisis) liked Total Divas? I mean, he likes that show Cake Boss too…

  • Paul McIntyre

    I once planned on using the five stages of grief to describe the process of a wrestling fan learning that the matches are pre-determined, but never got around to it. You have applied the idea to a completely different concept and made it hilarious.

    As a review, this is useless. I will never watch Total Divas. As a spoof, this is golden. Well done

  • Mathieu Nicod

    Awesome review =)

  • Josh Rushinock

    Fuck the show, this article is entertaining as hell.

  • Sean Linhares

    This was just the best. Although the show was better than you gave it credit for, this was just great. Article of the year.

  • Kevin Berge

    I haven’t even watched the show yet (I was watching Undertaker murder Mick Foley inside Hell in a Cell), but I had to read this review. This was hilariously good work, loved the use of the stages of grief.

  • Ryan Frye

    I… I… I enjoyed this show. It wasn’t bad, I actually found it be… goo… you know, on second thought, I’ll go with decent. This review was more than decent though, it was really good (and pretty funny) and I’ll be watching again next week… don’t judge me, okay? Hope your reviews continue too, because there’s nothing better than a suffering Jacob.

    • Jacob Stachowiak

      What in the world is wrong with you, Ryan? “Enjoyed this show” “It was…decent” FOR SHAME.

      I’m glad you liked the review but it might be a one time deal, this was brutal to say the very least.