Friday, February 5, 2016

A Review Of The New Dream Theater Album "The Astonishing"


Dream Theater "The Astonishing"

I was really really hoping this was where Dream Theater would turn it around.  I REALLY wanted this to be good.  And the first single was promising: "The Gift Of Music" is a unique approach for the band, clocking in at a lean, mean 4:00 on the dot.  Dream Theater has been stuck in a rut for so long of writing songs between eight and twenty five minutes in length that it started to feel forced around a decade ago.  So when I saw they were trying something different (only one song breaks the seven minute barrier), and trying it in the risky fashion of a full-blown concept album telling a movie-length story, I was pretty interested in hearing what they had come up with.

And despite the opening being a minute long noise-piece dedicated to the drone-like creatures on the cover and track two being an overture (which this band has only gotten right once, on "Scenes From A Memory"), I was still with it through track four.  "The Gift Of Music" is a really on-point song that has the band sounding fresh for the first time since about 2002.  "The Answer" is a short, interstitial major key ballad that sounds decent enough in context. 

"A Better Life" is where things start to get boring, and "Lord Nefaryous" is where they get downright cheesy on a badly-written show tune level, but compared to what follows, they're masterpieces because after that...

THE WHEELS FALL OFF.

Do you like major key piano ballads?  Ultra-sappy, hold up your lighter and wave it back and forth shits from back in the early to mid-80's?  Then holy SHIT have we found the album for you, because THAT'S BASICALLY ALL THERE IS FOR THE REST OF IT.  Seriously.  Two hours and ten minutes, and only about a half hour of that isn't Michael Bolton singing about...what the fuck is this album about, anyway? 

I'm amazed (Astonished, even) that the lyrics are so damn literal, yet the story is so hard to follow because there's no real story there.  Everything is so painfully plain but I can't make out what's happening.  Or maybe I can.  Nothing.  Nothing is happening.  For Two hours.  It's a really vague post-apocalyptic plot about music being the key to salvation and the forces of darkness something something I'm already asleep.  And I can only really infer the post-apocalyptic part from the artwork and the booklet.  This is SUPER bad story telling.  You have two HOURS to tell your story, and none of it comes across because the music is so boring I can't pay attention.  Come to think of it, the story is SO dragged out that...

Oh shit.  I've figured it out.  Dream Theater could have made this whole thing so much better if they'd told it as the same fifteen minute song they've been doing for the last fifteen years.  That actually would have been better, because there's only enough story and substance in this two hours of dreck to make fifteen minutes of material out of.  (I'm not saying it would have been good, necessarily, but it would have been better.)

"Three Days" is fucking VELVEETA.  It had me wide-eyed and biting my knuckles at how lame it sounded.  And this is the only real rocking moment between track seven and thirteen.  I'm not exaggerating; for fourteen minutes before and six minutes after, there's nothing but major key piano ballad.  And then there's a minute of hope at the beginning of "A Life Left Behind", reminiscent of early Yes, but then it goes back to the same 75bpm lighter-waving BULLSHIT that plagues the rest of this album.

And then there's "Ravenskill".  This is SO soft...so weak until the three minute mark where it starts being a good song for thirty seconds, then sinking back down to the same dreck as the rest.  "A Tempting Offer" teases the listener that this might be a little different, then...well, okay the freaky piano part is cool, but since all we've heard for almost a half hour at this point is cheesy piano, I can't honestly recommend it.

Then there's the second disc, which is built pretty much the same: Harder intro, this time with a heavier song about betrayal that sounds the most like a Dream Theater song out of anything in the batch, but that's to its detriment because it sounds like the most generic DT song in history.  Then there's one or two attempts at rocking numbers out of the next fourteen and I really feel like I wasted my two hours and twenty dollars, since I'm dumb and still buy CDs.  (Also, one last note of pepperjack: The sound effects of people sword-fighting, and especially the ones where they're crying after some character bites it are laughable to the point of incredulity.)

This is easily the worst Dream Theater album.  It's not even close.  I've bagged on this band for so long about being boring, but that was because they'd become so predictable.  So of course when they try something new, it's all a sick joke, because they write an ultra-cheezy one-hundred-and-thirty-one-minute long Peter Cetera song.

And what I can't understand is how all the critics are going ape shit for this album.  AllMusic: Four stars.  Classic Rock: Four stars.  Cross Fire: 9/10.  Kerrang!: Four stars.  Metal Hammer UK: 8/10.  Metal Hammer (Germany): 9/10.  MetalSucks even gave it four and a half stars.  Record Collector: FIVE Stars.  Rolling Stone and Consequence of Sound were the only ones who thought it was merely okay, at three and a half stars and a B Minus respectively.  It has a fucking Metacritic score of 80/100, which is one point off of UNIVERSAL ACCLAIM.  Anthony Fantano of TheNeedleDrop thought this album was the drizzling shits, but he's always hated Dream Theater.  This band used to be my favorite, and I have no choice but to indict them for this musical banality.  Hell, I only gave it a zero instead of a Negative One because of "The Gift Of Music".

Even from a musical theater perspective...I mean, I hate musicals with a passion, but I can at least understand their appeal.  I don't see how this could be appealing or compelling to anybody.  The story being told has NO substance, the songs aren't catchy, there's certainly no character to any of this bloodless endeavor...yet the band who critics loved to ignore or burn at the stake their whole 25 year career is now having a line formed so everyone can come suck their cock.  [They didn't used to need anybody to; they were sore from all the technical wanking!] [Four stars!]

I never Dreamed I'd see this band fall this far.  If this is what they're going to do from here on in, you can count me the fuck out.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Expect The Unexpected - Episode 021: Groundhog Day

Dear God, that was a terrifying journey!  I...I was caught in a vortex!  A time loop!  A paradox!  You guys, GROUNDHOG DAY IS REAL!!!  I am VERY fortunate to have come out the other side.  You may listen to my terror (in music-accented audio drama form) below, but take care that YOU don't become it's next victim!




1. "Down Under" Men At Work
2. "Dystopia" Megadeth
3. "Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap" AC/DC
4. "I Got You, Babe" Sonny & Cher
5. "Aisatnaforcen (Noisrev Eton Noillim 35)" Saegnig
6. THE WEIRDNESS
7. "Hymn To Him" Mahavishnu Orchestra

*with incidental music from: "Supersonic" by Jamiroquai | "Prelude Bombfare" by Haunted Shores | "Baby Seal Tested, Crack Ho Approved" by The GV Crew [backwards and mixed in with "Necrofantasia (53 Million Note Version)" by Gingeas (also backwards) and a third song which I cannot name lest I grant it too much power, also backwards and also played simultaneously] | "Best" Neil Cicierega


Tuesday, February 2, 2016

THANK YOU FOR 30,000 Pageviews!!!

There have been 30,000 visits to this blog, and 10,000 of them have been since Halloween 2014 when I posted the 20,000 blog.  That's honestly pretty damn cool, and I thank you all.  So to celebrate, here's a bunch of random bullshit I found on the internet when I looked up 30,000!!!

Here we go:











Further Reading:

Wikipedia: 30000
Wookiepedia entry on 30000 BBY
A Japanese lettuce farm run completely by Robots.
Muslims donate bottles of water to Flint, MI because they're, y'know, human beings with a conscience.
30000 Deathclaws in Fallout 4. Yikes.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

IT'S TIME TO RUMBLE: A Look Back At Royal Rumbles' (Just) Past (Part VIII)

Okay, I'm five days late, but yo, I started a new semester and I've already had a few assignments.  Wasn't expecting that.  Anyways, better late than never.  Here's the stats for this year's Royal Rumble, plus a conclusion of some kind, as promised:


2016



Winner: Triple H
(Entry: 30th | Lasted: 8:05 | Eliminations: 3)



Bridesmaid: Dean Ambrose
(Entry: 19th | Lasted: 29:36 | Eliminations: 1)



Iron Man: Roman Reigns (technically)
(Entry: 1st | Lasted: 59:50 | Eliminations: 4 | Dumped: 28th)



Eliminator: Braun Strowman
(Entry: 17th | Lasted: 16:44 | Eliminations: 5 | Dumped: 20th)



First To Fall: Rusev
(Entry: 2nd | Lasted: 1:30)



Loser: Jack Swagger
(Entry: 24th | Lasted: 0:15 | Dumped: 18th)

NOTES:

  • Total Match Time: 61:42
  • This match was for Roman Reigns' WWE World Heavyweight Title.
  • This is the longest Rumble in 10 years.  2006 was 62:12, had Triple H in the final three and emanated from the state of Florida.  Coincidence?  (...actually, yes.  Totally coincidence.)
  • Though Roman Reigns officially had the longest time, he was backstage half the match after catching a beatdown from the League Of Nations.  Chris Jericho posted a time of 50:50, so if you're into asterisks...
  • Triple H becomes the third man (and the first since 2008, where he placed 2nd) to win the Rumble from #30.
  • The WWE C.O.O. also sets a new mark for the span between Rumble wins at 14 years.  This is a mark that may never be broken.
  • Triple H also becomes a 14-time World Champion by virtue of his Rumble win.

Mr. Paul "Hunter Hearst Helmsley" Levesque has now guaranteed himself a slot in the main event of Wrestlemania 32.  If he goes on last, he will become the oldest performer to do so, at 46 years and eight & 1/2 months of age (breaking Batista's mark from two years ago at 45 & change).

ALL-TIME STATS:

Longest Rumble: 2011 (69:49) [40-Man Rumble]

Shortest Rumble: 1988 (33:35) [20-Man Rumble]

Longest 30-Man Rumble: 2002 (69:22)

Shortest 30-Man Rumble: 1995 (38:41)

Average length of a Royal Rumble: 55:17

Most Wins:
"Stone Cold" Steve Austin (3) (1997, 1998, 2001)

2nd Most Wins: TIE

Hulk Hogan (1990, 1991)
Shawn Michaels (1995, 1996)
Batista (2005, 2014)
John Cena (2008, 2013)
Triple H (2002, 2016)

Most Time In-Ring For A Winner:
Rey Mystetio (62:12) (2006)

Least Time In-Ring For A Winner:
Edge (7:19) (2010)

Most Eliminations for a Winner: TIE
"Stone Cold" Steve Austin (10) (1997)
Hulk Hogan (10) (1990)

Least Eliminations for a Winner:
"Big" John Studd (1) (1989)

All-Time Iron Man: Rey Mysterio (62:12)
(To put that in perspective, Rey lasted longer in 2006 than the length of almost every other Rumble match.  Only five were longer.  1989 was 65:08, 1991 was 65:15, 1993 was 66:40, 2002 was 69:22 and 2011 was 69:49.  And of course, he tied 2006 because that's...you get it.)

All Time Eliminator: Kane (43)

Most Rumbles Entered: Kane (19)
(The next closest is Shawn Michaels with 12, and he's retired)

Words written for this series of articles (including the ones after this sentence): 10,830

Thank you for reading!  It's been a lot of fun flexing my creative muscles again!  Maybe I'll do it again somewhere down the road...

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Expect The Unexpected - Episode 020

Don';t worry, kids.  That final Royal Rumble blog is coming.  I started a new semester this week, and well, in the words of Chief Montgomery Scott: "I wannae expectin' ta take us inta combat, ye know." -Star Trek III: The Search For Spock.




1. "Supersonic" Jamiroquai
2. "Dystopia" Megadeth
3. "A Floating Life" Level 42
4. "Velveteen / Lithium Flower" Yoko Kanno & The Seatbelts feat. Illiaria Graziano and Scott Matthew
5. "The Godfather" Fantomas (RIP Abe Vigoda)
6. "Invisible" Dio (RIP Jimmy Bain)
7. "Necrofantasia (53 Million Note Version)" Gingeas
8. "Baby Seal Tested, Crack Ho Approved" The GV Crew
9. [also by The GV Crew, but it's name shan't ever be spoken aloud...]

Sunday, January 24, 2016

IT'S TIME TO RUMBLE: A Look Back At Royal Rumbles' Past (Part VII)


2012



Winner: Sheamus
(Entry: 22nd | Lasted: 22:21| Eliminations: 3)



Bridesmaid: Chris Jericho
(Entry: 29th | Lasted: 11:34 | Eliminations: 2)



Iron Man: The Miz
(Entry: 1st | Lasted: 45:39 | Eliminations: 2 | Dumped: 25th)



Eliminator: Cody Rhodes
(Entry: 4th | Lasted: 41:55| Eliminations: 6 | Dumped: 24th)



First To Fall: Alex Riley
(Entry: 2nd | Lasted: 1:15)



Loser: Epico
(Entry: 10th | Lasted: 0:11 | Dumped: 6th)

NOTES:

  • Total Match Time: 54:55
  • Aside from all three members of the commentary team entering the Rumble, there was nothing of note to happen in this match.  Nothing.  Not one statistical anomaly, not one record broken, not one surprising return...Nothing.

Who Walked Out Of The Event As Champion?

CM Punk continued his march to the longest World title reign since Hulk Hogan's first run (though still fell short by around 1,000 days) by beating Dolph Ziggler.  Daniel Bryan escaped a cage with Big Show and Mark Henry in it.

Did The Winner Go On To Win The Championship?

Yes.  In 18 seconds.  This was the end of the World Heavyweight Championship having any meaning.  I hate to be that guy, but less than two years later they merged it with the other title.  Jus' sayin'.



2013



(Entry: 19th | Lasted: 26:39 | Eliminations: 4)



Bridesmaid: Ryback
(Entry: 30th | Lasted: 9:06 | Eliminations: 5)



Iron Man: Dolph Ziggler
(Entry: 1st | Lasted: 49:47 | Eliminations: 2 | Dumped: 27th)



Eliminator: TIE

Ryback (5)

Sheamus
(Entry: 11th | Lasted: 37:23 | Eliminations: 5 | Dumped: 28th)



First To Fall: Santino Marella
(Entry: 5th | Lasted: 0:55)



Loser: The Godfather
(Entry: 17th | Lasted: 0:05 | Dumped: 10th)

NOTES:

  • Total Match Time: 55:07
  • Dolph Ziggler lasted longer than the 2010 Royal Rumble's entire match time by 23 seconds.
  • John Cena sets the mark for longest interval between Rumble wins with five years.  Before that, Austin was the only non-Back-To-Back repeat winner, taking a year off between his second and third Rumble wins.
  • Other than that, we knew at the time John Cena was going to win, so this whole Pay-Per-View was a mere formality.


Who Walked Out Of The Event As Champion?

Alberto Del Rio duct taped Big Show's leg to the rope to win a Last Man Standing Match, and CM Punk wrestled The Rock three weeks out of knee surgery in a match that saw an end to his 434 day run as WWE Champion at the hands of The Great One.

Did The Winner Go On To Win The Championship?

Of course.  Cena ALWAYS gets his win back.



2014



Winner: Boo (ahem) Ba-tista.
(Entry: 28th | Lasted: 14:34 | Eliminations: 4)



Bridesmaid: Roman Reigns
(Entry: 15th | Lasted: 33:51 | Eliminations: 12)



Iron Man: CM Punk
(Entry: 1st | Lasted: 49:11 | Eliminations: 3)



Eliminator: Roman Reigns (12)


First To Fall: Damien Sandow
(Entry: 3rd | Lasted: 2:17)



Loser: The Great Khali
(Entry: 16th | Lasted: 0:24 | Dumped: 10th)

NOTES:

  • Total Match Time: 55:07
  • Roman Reigns sets a record with a whopping 12 eliminations.  That's 40% of the field.
  • Batista sets a record with nine years between Royal Rumble wins.
  • El Torito sets a record as the smallest competitor in Royal Rumble history. (4'5", 110lbs.)  (Though an inch taller than Hornswoggle, he's 32 pounds lighter)
  • On the undercard, The New Age Outlaws broke a record, winning the tag team titles after last winning them in late 1999.  No singles wrestler or tag team has ever recaptured a title after a fourteen year span.  (The closest I can think of was Bob Backlund winning the WWF Championship at Survivor Series 1994 after losing it Boxing Day of 1983.  The Rock too; Summerslam 2002 and Royal Rumble 2013.)
  • With the exception of the Daniel Bryan/Bray Wyatt match, the entire event was critically reviled.  The fans not only booed Batista (a "good guy") out of the building for winning (to which he responded "Deal with it!"), but Rey Mysterio got NUCLEAR heat for coming out #30 and not being Daniel Bryan.  Everybody felt it was his year.  People started walking out of the arena at that point.  Then when it came down to Roman Reigns and Batista, the fans cheered the bad guy as opposed to the "returning conquering hero".
  • CM Punk walked out of the company the next day.  Here's why.  


Who Walked Out Of The Event As Champion?

This was the first Royal Rumble after the world titles were re-unified, so only one to report: Randy Orton won a half-hour long series of chin locks masquerading as "a match" against John Cena (who got his win back at Hell In A Cell).  The fans booed this shit out of the building as well.

Did The Winner Go On To Win The Championship?

NOPE!  Debate will rage for years if WWE was working us all or if they actually felt the tremendous pressure and put Daniel Bryan into the Wrestlemania main event, but Batista wound up tapping out in a triple threat match to the man of the hour.  Of course Bryan then had a Wrestlecrap-worthy program with Kane before having to drop the belts due to a neck injury and nerve damage in his arm because we just can't have nice things.  Oh, hey, speaking of which:



2015



Winner: Roman Reigns
(Entry: 19th | Lasted: 27:29 | Eliminations: 6)



Bridesmaid: Rusev
(Entry: 15th | Lasted: 35:40 | Eliminations: 6)



Iron Man: Bray Wyatt
(Entry: 5th | Lasted: 47:29 | Eliminations: 6)



Eliminator: TIE
(Technically a three way tie, but Roman Reigns had help on one of them from Dean Ambrose, so:)

Rusev (6)

Bray Wyatt (6)


First To Fall: The Miz
(Entry: 1st | Lasted: 4:01)



Loser: Titus O'Neil
(Entry: 26th | Lasted: 0:04 | Dumped: 18th)

NOTES:

  • Total Match Time: 59:31
  • This Rumble is viewed by many (myself included) as not only the worst Royal Rumble of all time, but one of the worst booked wrestling matches in history.  Let me count the ways:
  • Daniel Bryan was in the match, but he was eliminated after 10 minutes.  The most over guy in the entire business, and they put him between entries 10 and 15 because they didn't want Roman Reigns to get booed.
  • They then had ABSOLUTELY no other stars come out besides Roman Reigns.  I mean, Dean Ambrose and Dolph Ziggler were both hopes against hope but to call either stars is to stretch the definition to the point of breaking (especially now).
  • The Big Show and Kane started teaming up to eliminate everybody in the ring one by one.  Systematically.  By knocking one person unconscious and dumping them in tandem.  (This is how Kane broke Shawn Michaels's all-time elimination record with 42 dumps, by the way.)  Seriously, they did this like four times.  By the time they were done, half the building was empty, and the rest were resigned to their fate, chanting "Please retire!" at both 20+ year veterans.
  • When it came time for Roman to get tossed, of course he Cena'd up and won.  Then the giants beat him down for retribution.  This is when The Rock (Roman's cousin once-removed) came down to make the save.  Just after they did all that to serve Kane & Big Show to Roman on a silver platter to make him look strong, they put him in peril to the point where he needed help.
  • The Rock cleared house and left the ring, instructing Roman to "do his thing".  Roman starts to celebrate, and the fans start chanting "We want Rusev".  Why?  Because Rusev was pulling a Santino Marella, and he runs in the ring and is instantly thrown over the top rope and fuck you.
  • THE ROCK is then booed out of the building as he raises Roman's hand and an eyebrow of incredulity.  The Rock, may I remind you, is quantifiably one of the most popular people on the planet.
  • #CancelWWENetwork trended worldwide.
  • The page to cancel a network subscription crashed early and didn't go back up for days.
  • The network hit 1,000,000 subscribers for the first time later in the week.  It hasn't dipped below that number since no matter how much we all love to complain.  (Full disclosure: I do not have, nor have I ever had a subscription.)


Who Walked Out Of The Event As Champion?

Brock Lesnar won a Match Of The Year candidate (it was my favorite, since I don't watch New Japan or NXT often enough) against John Cena and Seth Rollins.  Seriously, I can't think of a better triple threat match since maybe Wrestlemania XX.

Did The Winner Go On To Win The Championship?

NOPE AGAIN!  Seth Rollins cashed in the Money In The Bank briefcase (which guarantees the holder a World Title shot anytime they want for up to one year) during the main event of Wrestlemania.  (A fact that was spoiled for me BY WIKIPEDIA while I was doing research for The Tournament To End All Tournaments.  Looking up Bruno Sammartino's title reign to see if it was longer than Jim Londos's, and I get a picture of Seth Rollin's mug when I open the article for WWWF Champion (it redirects).  Still mad about that.)

Anyway, check back tomorrow night, and I'll have the stats for the 2016 Royal Rumble, plus a conclusion of some kind!


IT'S TIME TO RUMBLE: A Look Back At Royal Rumbles' Past (Part VI)


2008



(Entry: 30th | Lasted: 9:51 | Eliminations: 4)



Bridesmaid: Triple H
(Entry: 29th | Lasted: 11:21 | Eliminations: 6)



Iron Man: Batista
(Entry: 8th | Lasted: 37:24 | Eliminations: 4)



Eliminator: Triple H (6)



First To Fall: Santino Marella
(Entry: 3rd | Lasted: 0:25)



Loser: Shelton Benjamin
(Entry: 17th | Lasted: 0:18 | Dumped: 7th)

NOTES:

  • Total Match Time: 51:26
  • John Cena was not scheduled to be in this Rumble.  It was one of the most recent shocking twists WWE was able to pull off on its audience (eight years ago).
  • Cena is the second #30 in a row to win.  He is also the most recent.
  • #29 and #30 have never before or since been the last two left in the ring.

Who Walked Out Of The Event As Champion?

Randy Orton retained the WWE Crown against Jeff Hardy, and Edge beat Rey Mysterio to keep big WHC gold around his waist.

Did The Winner Go On To Win The Championship?

No.  Randy Orton managed to fend off both winner and bridesmaid in a triple threat match.



2009



Winner: Randy Orton
(Entry: 8th | Lasted: 48:27 | Eliminations: 3)



Bridesmaid: Triple H
(Entry: 7th | Lasted: 49: 55 | Eliminations: 6)



Iron Man: Triple H (49:55)



Eliminator: TIE

Triple H (6)

The Big Show
(Entry: 30th | Lasted: 9:32 | Eliminations: 6 | Dumped: 25th)


First To Fall: The Great Khali
(Entry: 5th | Lasted: 1:30)



Loser: Santino Marella
(Entry: 28th | Lasted: 0:01.9 | Dumped: 15th)

NOTES:

  • Total Match Time: 58:37
  • Santino Marella breaks the 20 year old record of The Warlord by being eliminated in the quickest time of 1.9 seconds.  I saw it live when it happened, and you can't really be eliminated any faster than that.  It was the smoothest in and out I've ever seen.  Santino's first words after hitting the ground: "....I wasn't ready!  I wasn't ready!"
  • Randy Orton is the first to win from the 8th slot.
  • Four men lasted more than 45 minutes in this match.  They are Ted DiBiase (Jr.) (Entered 10th | Lasted: 45:11), Randy Orton (Entered 8th | Lasted 48:27), Rey Mysterio (Entered 1st | Lasted 49:24) and Triple H (Entered 7th | Lasted 49:55)

Who Walked Out Of The Event As Champion?

John Cena maintained control of the World Heavyweight Championship thanks to Shawn Michaels coming to his senses and superkicking JBL and their stupid manservant angle to oblivion.  Edge retained the WWE Title against Jeff Hardy.

Did The Winner Go On To Win The Championship?

No.  At No Way Out in February, Edge was pinned inside of three minutes in the WWE Title Elimination Chamber match (then went to sneak into the second chamber and win the World Heavyweight Championship, but that's another story).  Triple H came out of the Chamber as champion, then started a blood feud with Rumble winner Randy Orton involving both men's immediate families.  This of course culminated in a match where if Triple H got DQ'd, he'd lose the belt instead of the Street Fight it should have been.  As a result Wrestlemania ended with a wet noodle of a main event thanks to this handcuff of a stipulation.



2010



Winner: Edge
(Entry: 29th | Lasted: 7:19 | Eliminations: 2)



Bridesmaid: John Cena
(Entry: 19th | Lasted: 22:11 | Eliminations: 4)



Iron Man: John Cena (22:11)



Eliminator: Shawn Michaels
(Entry: 18th | Lasted: 20:45 | Eliminations: 6 | Dumped: 27th)


First To Fall: Evan Bourne
(Entry: 2nd | Lasted: 2:26)



Loser: Montel Vontavious Porter (MVP)
(Entry: 14th | Lasted: 0:07 | Eliminations: 1 | Dumped: 9th)

NOTES:

  • Total Match Time:49:24
  • Two eliminations is the least for a winner of the Rumble since Vince McMahon in 1999.
  • John Cena's time of 22:11 is the lowest for an Iron Man in any Rumble by more than three minutes.  The original low was Bret Hart in 1988 (25:42), but that Rumble had only 20 participants and lasted a total of 33:35.
  • MVP is the only Rumble participant ever to rack up an elimination with less than 10 seconds of ring time.  He eliminated himself and The Miz at the same time because Miz clocked him with the U.S. Title at the entrance and he wanted revenge.  Miz caught a BEAT down.
  • Beth Phoenix is the first woman in Royal Rumble history to eliminate a competitor. She made out with The Great Khali while standing on the apron, and turned the liplock into a headlock and pulled the Punjabi Playboy out of the ring.
  • This was Shawn Michaels's last Rumble.  He lost a retirement match at Wrestlemania XXVI, and for once in wrestling, the match stipulation stuck.  Michaels set a career elimination mark on the way out with 39 men thrown over the top rope in 12 appearances.
  • This was MVP's last Rumble to date, as he went to Japan shortly thereafter.
  • Ten wrestlers failed to last two minutes.  Eight failed to last one minute.  Six failed to last 30 seconds.
  • This is the shortest Rumble Match since 1995, and the shortest ever with 90 second intervals.

Who Walked Out Of The Event As Champion?

Sheamus and The Undertaker had the WWE and WCH belts respectively.  Neither made it to Wrestlemania with gold.  John Cena won the WWE Title Chamber match only to be ambushed by Batista immediately afterwords and have his belt taken.  Chris Jericho won the World Heavyweight Championship thanks to Shawn Michaels coming through the floor grate and kicking an Undertaker with third-degree burns on his face and chest due to a pre-match pyrotechnic accident (which meant he wasn't at the following SmackDown, which meant $50 WASTED (the only redeeming thing about those TV tapings was seeing the first episode of NXT where Daniel Bryan debuted and fought Jericho); never did get to see Taker in person...).  Anyway, where was I?

Did The Winner Go On To Win The Championship?

No.  Edge lost to Chris Jericho.  That's...pretty much it.



2011



Winner: Alberto Del Rio
(Entry: 38th | Lasted: 9:33 | Eliminations: 2)



Bridesmaid: Santino Marella
(Entry: 37th | Lasted: 12:54 | Eliminations: 0)



Iron Man: CM Punk
(Entry: 1st | Lasted: 35:21 | Eliminations: 7 | Dumped: 21st)



Eliminator: TIE

CM Punk (7)

John Cena
(Entry: 22nd | Lasted: 34:17 | Eliminations: 7 | Dumped: 36th)


First To Fall: Justin Gabriel
(Entry: 3rd | Lasted: 0:58)



Loser: Tyler Reks
(Entry: 16th | Lasted: 0:34 | Dumped: 12th)

NOTES:

  • Total Match Time: 69:49
  • This is the only 40-man Royal Rumble to ever take place.
  • This is the longest Royal Rumble, beating 2002 by 27 seconds.
  • Everyone thought the final four men in the ring were Alberto Del Rio, Randy Orton, Wade Barrett and John Cena.  After Del Rio dumped the other three, Santino Marella (who had been thrown through the ropes, not over the top) peered up over the apron and got into the ring behind Del Rio's back.  He hit The Cobra and did his trombone dance while everybody went wild.  Santino was going to win the Rumble!!  Holy shit!!  Then Del Rio reversed Santino's elimination attempt and threw dude out, but it's still one of the best finishes they've ever done.  (Of course when they tried to do it again last year, it was in the middle of a clusterfuck and the fans had already turned on the event 20 minutes prior, so it didn't work quite as well...)

Who Walked Out Of The Event As Champion?

That would be Edge with the World Heavyweight Championship, and The Miz with the spinner.  They beat Dolph Ziggler and Randy Orton respectively.

Did The Winner Go On To Win The Championship?

No.  Alberto Del Rio would battle Edge in a losing effort in what would be "The Rated-R Superstar"'s final match.  The next day, an MRI revealed Edge had practically no spinal fluid left, and his shit=fucked.  It was also the first time a World Heavyweight Championship title match opened a Wrestlemania, meaning that the big gold belt was now basically the Intercontinental Title with a different name.