The Suicida Appraisal: Damien Sandow

by Martin Dixon

 

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He’s our intellectual saviour, a well spoken elitist with delusions of grandeur and a nice new blue briefcase that all but gifts him a World Heavyweight Championship. He also has something very special stemming from his victory at Money in the Bank: a feud with Cody Rhodes. In contrast to Randy Orton, who after his MitB victory has a briefcase but no real momentum beyond speculation as to when his cash in will occur and on whom, Sandow has an intriguing storyline against his former “best friend” to go with his contract who just may be able to take the briefcase from him, or be his first challenger. So now let’s look at Mr. Sandow–his strengths, his failings and where I think he should go from here. So brush up on your Latin proverbs and lets get appraising, shall we?
 
Strengths
Damien is sheer dynamite on the microphone, not in an explosive “pipe bomb” kind of way, but a snarky, patronising snobbish way. His delivery and quick wits are almost second to none, I don’t want to poke the bear that is the IWC but it’s not unlike Triple H when he goes off script when the situation arises.
 
When the posturing ends and the bell rings, Sandow possess a style that’s hugely impressive, very old school and hard hitting, it’s one of the things that stops Sandow being a next generation retread of The Genius. It’s a nice contrast, this intellectual character not being afraid to trade blows with his “lesser” adversaries. It means we don’t get the effeminate gesturing and stalling of The Genius, which would seem incongruous and maybe downright offensive these days. Kudos must be given for not “taking the easy way out” with Sandow similar to Fandango, who is still a hyper masculine character. 
 
 
Areas of Opportunity
As I write this, I’m struggling to recall from memory any of Sandow’s signature moves beyond the Elbow of Disdain, this could be exceptionally poor recollection on my part, but Imagesome blame must go to whoever is laying out Damien’s matches. I it wasn’t for the Sandow characterisation, we’d be in the presence of a very bland performer indeed. That said a great gimmick can overcome flaws in an act, and it’s only really the babyfaces that should have flashy movesets designed to get reactions from the crowd, but if the Face/Heel dynamic truly is dying out, even the most heelish of heels will need some killer offence, and right now I’m not sure if Damien has that right now.
 
 
 
 
Going Forward
 
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As I said before, Damien was a true winner at Money in the Bank, he got a tailor made feud with a turning Cody Rhodes that may take a more prominent role on Smackdown than the WHC programme itself right now and has the potential to turn not just Damien into a top flight star, but Rhodes as well. The signs seem to point towards a feud between the two over ownership of the blue briefcase, if this is the case I’d be against switching the two and keeping the contract on Sandow, I’d also go against all my better judgement and suggest that this feud not have a real conclusion until Sandow is the champion, where Cody can be his first viable challenger, to reach a definitive conclusion to their story arc. 
 
This is something I feel is great about WWE right now, I know we’re getting Punk vs Lesnar and that’s great and will get PPV buys and such, but I’m looking forward to the promise of these new or new to the main event acts & performers, the Wyatt Family, the ascension of Daniel Bryan, and arcs like Sandow & Rhodes are all making for compelling television. As I’ve said in articles before we as fans are in the midst of a really great stage in WWE, with great performers having great segments and matches seemingly for fun, and Damien Sandow’s current situation is testament to that, with just a few tweaks we could be witnessing the rise of a big star or two, and I for one hope so. 
 
As always if you have any opinions on this piece I can be reached on twitter at twitter.com/BunnySuicida where I’d love to hear your feedback both positive and negative. So until we meet again dear readers remember to have fun with wrestling because that’s what it’s there for. 
 
Martin Dixon
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