Payback was on its way to being a really solid show!
There were plenty of smartly told stories in the ring, great moments throughout… and then the House of Horrors match happened. Then the quality went as backward as Bray Wyatt’s tractor. We’ll tell you exactly how we felt in this week’s main event.
And Roman Reigns and Braun Strowman had an amazing main event to the show! But what’s keeping Mike from fully embracing him as a performer? And why is everyone going after the Secondary titles on RAW and Smackdown instead of the world titles? There’s a lot to get to, the Nation can’t wait to go through it all with you!
It’s a tale of two WWE shows…
You’ve got Smackdown which has set up a lot of stars, including Jinder Mahal, The Singh Brothers and Breezango, for the spotlight that’s eluded them in their careers. But is that push coming too fast and too soon? We’ll take a look.
On the other hand, you’ve got RAW, which is treading water going into the first post-Wrestlemania Pay Per View “Payback.” But there were still a few things worth noting this week, including the much-hyped Dumpster Match between Kalisto and Braun Strowman.
My Special Wrestler
Chris Cubas is a stand-up comedian who had previously lapsed as a wrestling fan for a number of years. But who finally brought back the excitement for him? None other than the hardcore legend, Mick Foley.
Visit Chris online to find out about all of his ongoing projects.
The Superstar shake-up has led to some new developments that we all expected and ones that we absolutely couldn’t have seen coming.
Jinder Mahal has officially become the Number 1 contender for the WWE Title! He’s got the Bollywood Boyz as his new heaters and it looks like him and his veins are set for the big time. We’ll tell you how we feel about his major push.
Plus, Alexa Bliss and Charlotte have set their sights on their respective brand's major titles. Is it the right move to get them in the spotlight so soon? Probably! We’ll explain.
Plus, more geeking out about Braun Strowman, a look at the U.S. Title competition and a lot more.
As WWE has tried to move away from the standard objectification of its female athletes, the fashion of the women has changed. But that doesn’t mean that the sexiness factor has been completely eliminated. Does WWE need to completely eliminate that if they want things to be on a truly equal level? We’ll take a look.
HOW SHOOK ARE YOU?!
Thanks to the Superstar Shake-up, let’s say very!
So many wrestlers have switched shows, including guys who elevated themselves in the last year like The Miz, Kevin Owens, Alexa Bliss, Charlotte and more.
But was this the best thing to do, especially when the brand split is less than a year old? We’ll take a look.
Plus, Braun Strowman flipped over a freakin’ ambulance! With Roman Reigns (supposedly) inside! We’ll talk about that and explain why we’re going to miss Mauro Renallo so much on Smackdown.
As a thank you for making our first Max Fun Drive such a great success, we're happy to provide you with this special BONUS episode of Tights and Fights.
Julian Burrell, producer of the show, chats with Charlotte Wilder. She recently wrote an article for SB Nation detailing her experience of watching Wrestlemania as a complete wrestling outsider. She tells Julian all about which matches caught her eye, whether she'll keep watching wrestling... and how she feels about Roman Reigns.
Next, author Lindsey Kelk was at Wrestlemania in Orlando! Before the show got started, she spoke with some wrestlers from WWE's current roster and asked them some of YOUR Facebook questions! Those interviewed include Seth Rollins, Alex Bliss, Cesaro, Shaemus and more.
Produced by Julian Burrell for Maximum Fun.
Wrestlemania is the longest, most exciting and most exhausting WWE event every single year. The 33rd edition of the show was no different.
In fact, between Mania, the Hall of Fame, RAW, Smackdown, TakeOver: Orlando and the pre and post-shows for those events, there were over 24 hours (!!!!!) of WWE content on TV in the past seven days.
New champions were crowned, new stars debuted, old stars retired, and a lot more.
It’s can all be overwhelming, but luckily the Nation of Conversation is here to break down all of the things that happened… or at least the stuff that we cared about.
Happy Max Fun Drive finale week! And HAPPY WRESTLEMANIA!
This week our show is dedicated to the show of shows. Wrestlemania 33 starts this Sunday for a 57-hour wrestling extravaganza!
We’re gonna take a look at some of the biggest matches on the card. We’ve got the RAW Women’s match between Sasha Banks, Charlotte Flair, Bayley and Nia Jax which is now an elimination match! The RAW Tag Title match which is now ladder match! The Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal… which is also happening!
As the WWE loves to remind us, Wrestlemania is made up of moments. What are our favorite ones? And does framing EVERYTHING as a Wrestlemania moment become a little forced after a while?
To become a donor of the show, just head to MaximumFun.org/donate! Doing so helps us unlock all sorts of great Tights and Fights stretch goals, including the chance to win a ticket to a future PWG show! Listen to find out how!
Happy Max Fun Drive! be sure to donate to show us how important Tights and Fights is to you at maximumfun.org/donate.
It’s not paranoia! It’s the USOS!
Now that they’ve become three-time tag team champions after defeating American Alpha, what’s next for the Usos? Can they rebuild the Smackdown tag team division?
Plus: what needs to happen between Roman Reigns and the Undertaker to get us invested in their big match? Why are the Miz and Maryse making their match against John Cena and Nikki Bella so compelling?
How great is South Paw Regional wrestling?! Seriously!
An examination and recasting of one of the most famous GIFs in wrestling: Stacy Keibler's audition as Vince McMahon's secretary.
Hal Lublin’s returned from his great boat adventure as we inch closer and closer to Wrestlemania!
We’ve gotten more matches confirmed for the show of shows! Seth Rollins vs. Triple H looks like it will happen; AJ Styles put Shane McMahon’s head through a car window (a fact that WWE replays wouldn’t let us forget); and both RAW and Smackdown Tag Team Champions got the chance to perform!
We’ll break all that down and so much more.
The rise of the smart mark has changed the business of pro wrestling, for better and for worse. How can WWE better address the storylines that fans want to see? How can fans temper the expectations so that they enjoy wrestling more? The Nation of Conversation will explore both options.
So… Fast Lane. It wasn’t the best-received show in recent memory, but it did give us plenty to discuss as we head into the last few weeks before Wrestlemania.
Goldberg is now the WWE Universal Champion. But what does this mean for Kevin Owens and Chris Jericho? Does this take the wind out of their scheduled match, even if it is for the U.S. Title?
Plus, now we know what’s scheduled for the RAW and Smackdown women’s division. We’ll break down the positives and the negatives of the what’s on the docket.
And with Wrestlemania just under a month away, there’s sure to be plenty of great memories… and some bitter disappointments. We’ll break down the latter in this week’s main event.
This week Smackdown and RAW both took turns on the road to Wrestlemania… And the Nation of Conversation was not in favor of all of them.
The team explains their frustrations with Seth Rollins and Randy Orton and how they're divided on how much they’re looking forward to John Cena & Nikki Bella versus The Miz and Maryse.
Plus, a celebration Ring of Honor's 15th anniversary and a look at what the latest departures from Impact Wrestling could mean for the show as it continues to fight for an identity.
The road to Wrestlemania is far from set!
Will Bray Wyatt’s opponent for the WWE Title be Luke Harper and AJ Styles? Who will hold the Universal Title after Kevin Owens and Goldberg face each other? Is Naomi out of Wrestlemania completely?
Hal and Danielle are going to break down some of the biggest points of contention as we move towards the WWE’s biggest event of the year.
Then, Mike Eagle joins the show to discuss one of the under discussed points of professional wrestling: The fashion.
Wow, a bunch of things happened on WWE TV this week!
There have been THREE Champions crowned since Sunday: Bray Wyatt finally captured the WWE Championship at Elimination Chamber; Naomi beat Alexa Bliss for the Smackdown Women’s Championship, and Bayley defeated Charlotte for the RAW Women’s Championship.
Which one are we most excited for? We’ll explain.
And was Chris Jericho and Kevin Owens’ Festival of Friendship the best RAW segment ever? Right now it’s kind of hard to think otherwise. We’ll gush about it and speculate about what could come next.
Plus, in a new segment, Danielle breaks down the past and present of misogyny and misandry in wrestling.
Even in a quiet week of wrestling, the WWE machine keeps on moving.
Samoa Joe made his big debut against a Samoan Joe (who you may know better as Roman Reigns). We’ll talk about what we thought of Joe’s first RAW main event.
Plus, Smackdown’s got a Pay Per View this Sunday: Elimination Chamber. This year’s participants are AJ Styles, The Miz, John Cena, Bray Wyatt and Baron Corbin and Dean Ambrose. Who’s looking strong? And who should win the WWE Title to take on Randy Orton at Wrestlemania?
My Special Wrestler:
Williams just released the third installment in the Super Pro KO series. It’s entitled Gold for Glory.
For the last two years, the Royal Rumble has been a controversial affair. The previous winners have led to many accusations that the WWE doesn’t understand its audience anymore. Was this year any different? Well… kinda.
We’re breaking down everything we cared about from the Rumble… including what was probably the biggest troll job the company has ever done: Roman Reigns at Number 30.
Plus, a Big Four Pay Per View on Sunday means that we also get a new NXT TakeOver on Saturday. And while there was noticeably less stay power on this week’s show than usual, most people on the card raised their stock on the developmental brand.
We’ll break down all the biggest happenings from both shows, including the debut of Samoa Joe… and the injury of Seth Rollins.
The Royal Rumble is when the road to Wrestlemania really starts to heat up.
And it also happens to be Hal’s favorite pay per view.
The Nation of Conversation will reminisce about some of their favorite Rumble winners and moments throughout the years. And they’ll decide if the fact that so few of them have had success at Wrestlemania is hurting the idea of the show.
Plus, from the AJ Styles and John Cena for the World title to Kevin Owens vs. Roman Reigns for the Universal title, we explain which feuds are on the right track for this weekend. And why was there only 1 women’s match on WWE TV this week? All this and a lot more on this week’s show.
Greetings grapple fans!
WWE has crowned its inaugural United Kingdom Champion: Tyler Bate. The Nation of Conversation will discuss what they thought of the tournament and whether or not they’re on board for the eventual UK-centric WWE Network show that’s set to launch this year.
Plus the crowd at the UK tournament was as lively as any in recent memory. But that energy doesn’t always translate well with some people watching the action in the US. When does a crowd reaction get in the way of us enjoying the product as a viewer? We’ll discuss.
Plus, why we’re so excited for Kurt Angle to return, why this year’s Royal Rumble could be one of the best in recent memory and so much more.
Mike Eagle is out for the week, but we’ve got another Chicagoan stepping in in his stead: Mira Waters from the website Fight Booth.
The team discusses Wrestle Kingdom 11 and why it hopefully set the tone for a great year of wrestling. And yes, they’ll talk about that great main event for the IWGP Championship.
Plus, while Smackdown’s women’s title picture is heating up, The Nation of Conversation has MAJOR beef with how a certain announcer has been treating the overall division.
Also on the docket: Chris Jericho’s big title win on RAW, The Undertaker and Shawn Michaels returning to TV, how WWE can best use American Alpha in the future and much more.
My Special Wrestler:
Lindsey Kelk is an accomplished author, but she’s also quite the wrestling fan. She’s covered Wrestlemania for Cosmopolitan and interviewed plenty of popular wrestlers in the WWE and beyond.
But there’s one superstar who’s always had her attention since she was a kid: Bret “The Hitman” Hart. She’ll explain why.
Lindsey Kelk’s newest book is entitled We Were on a Break.
It’s the first the first episode of Tights and Fights in 2017!
To celebrate, we’re looking back on some of the most significant events that defined 2016. That includes happenings like the reintroduction of the Women’s Title, AJ Styles’s coming out party and more.
Plus, God help us, the WWE has ANOTHER new show that debuted this week on the WWE Network. Bring it to the Table is, apparently, WWE’s way of addressing and bashing the opinions of fans. We’ll explain why that may not be the best idea going forward.
And of course, we’ll break down the first 2017 episodes of RAW and Smackdown*.
*Authors note: Next we’ll be talking Wrestle Kingdom XI next week, promise!
Before Tights and Fights properly launched, the Nation of Conversation recorded several pilot episodes to help work out the format of the show.
This week, with the show on holiday hiatus, we’re sharing a sampling of some of our favorite moments from those pilot sessions.
You’ll hear about the team’s favorite merchandise, what they thought about the very first Final Deletion, why Goldberg is such a rude podcast guest and much much more.
*This week’s episode was recorded on Monday evening, which means this week’s RAW and Smackdown had not occurred yet for us to discuss them.
Roadblock: End of the Line wasn’t the best show, both from a wrestling and a naming perspective. But between the multiple title changes and the interesting story-telling decisions, there are plenty of things for the Nation of Conversation to talk about.
Plus: WWE is instituting the first ever United Kingdom Championship. How do they make it work? Naturally, we’ve got the answers.
And whatever Total Nonstop Deletion is, one thing is certain: It made Hal’s head hurt.
In a move that’s been over a year in the making, The New Day has official become the longest reigning WWE World Tag Team Champions in history.
There’s been ups and downs throughout their tenure, but the Nation will explain why their record breaking night on Monday restored a lot of their love for the RAW’s flagship team… and who they hope eventually beats them.
And wrestling intersects with the real world more than almost any form of entertainment. But is there a that needs to exist between drawing inspiration for a storyline and exploiting real-world events?
Plus, a look at all the matches that are coming up at the RAW-exclusive December PPV Roadblock: End of The Line: Redemption: Age of Extinction: The Force Awakens.
This past Sunday was TLC (Tables, Ladders and Chairs), December’s Smackdown exclusive PPV. And between a table match, a ladder match, a chairs match AND and tables, ladders and chairs match, it all got to be a little exhausting.
But The Nation of Conversation breaks down the results and explains why they’re on board for the big moment in the show’s main event between Dean Ambrose and AJ Styles.
Plus: Comic creator Box Brown joins us for the latest installment of our series “My Special Wrestler.” His comic biography “Andre the Giant: Life and Legend” has earned him praise from comic and wrestling fans alike.
He’ll tell you all about why Ravishing Rick Rude, one of the most sleazy characters ever to grace the wrestling ring, is actually very under-appreciated.
Brown’s newest comic is entitled Tetris: The Games People Play.
In an effort to prove the investment into the Cruiserweight division was worthwhile, WWE finally gave the performers in the division their own show: 205 Live! And while it’s a step up from what we had before, there’s still room to improve.
And some major performers on RAW seem to be changing up pushing characters in more interesting directions. How encouraging is this? We’ll try to figure that out.
Plus: Not every championship reign is created equal. To explain why, the Nation of Conversation breaks down some recent examples including Sasha, Sexy Star, The New Day and Charlotte.
This year the WWE has really been pushing the boundaries of how much wrestling they can squeeze into a single week.
NXT TakeOver Toronto aired on Saturday featuring a ton of great matches, including what Hal thinks may have been the match of the year. NXT is clearly in a reloading stage right now, but the team explains why they’re still on board for the brand.
Plus: Survivor Series, the forgotten WWE big four pay-per-view, happened on Sunday. And everyone, including the Nation of Conversation, has something to say about the finish to Brock Lesnar vs. Goldberg match. And with the show featuring three tradition Survivor Series elimination matches, has the concept been revitalized or run into the ground?
But before all of that, we just had to talk about Lucha Underground’s Aztec Warfare 3. Sexy Star became the first women to ever hold the Lucha Underground Championship and Danielle was live in the temple to see it happen.