Time does weird things to pop culture. Something that wasn’t popular when it was released can look like a masterpiece a decade later. And something that made a billion dollars five years ago can force you to question your own humanity now. And when it comes to video game trailers, never before has time twisted something like it twisted WWE! Smackdown! Here Comes The Pain’s trailer. You know, in an English class, when they sometimes give you a paragraph and tell you to spot the grammatical errors? This is kind of like that, except with bodybuilders.
We start with someone gruffly saying “RATED T FOR TEEN.” Teens, as all teens in the mid 2000s know, are the raddest demographic. Bedecked with skate shoes and All American Rejects CDs, the only announcer befitting of them is one doing a light Batman impression.
We then are hit with the words “LOCKER ROOM,” written on double doors that obviously do not lead to a locker room, or possibly any room for that matter, as behind them is just a blinding light. Brock Lesnar, who is 80% shoulders at this point in his career, steps out. This simple act is so badass that not only do they cut to video game Brock Lesnar opening some video game doors, but we see real Brock Lesnar come through the doors twice. Don’t mess with this guy.
Then again, looking at Brock Lesnar, this may have been done to illustrate the fact that he indeed knows how to open doors, and doesn’t just Kool Aid Man himself around the arena.
And who is the first guy that Brock Lesnar runs into? Who is the second of the three male wrestlers that they chose to sell an entire game to the world? Why none other than ACTUAL MURDERER Chris Benoit.
Benoit says “You’re nothin’, Lesnar,” which A) Is not true, as Lesnar looks like he should be swatting planes at the top of the Empire State Building, and B) FUCK. This guy killed his wife and son and then himself. I know that there’s no way to retroactively go back and replace Benoit with Rey Mysterio or Triple H or any other wrestler or anything at all, but maybe science should be figuring out how to get on that.
The next guy Lesnar walks past is John Cena. But not star of Ferdinand and Blockers and episodes of Live With Kelly and Michael John Cena, but white guy rapper John Cena, who is apparently freestyling to impress two women that have nothing else to do. If pro wrestling TV is to be believed, wrestlers spend most of their time not training or putting together matches, but hanging out in the hallway, just hoping that someone, anyone might come by.
Brock Lesnar stops in the hallway to flex at nothing, when Torrie Wilson, wearing lingerie, walks up to challenge Brock Lesnar to a bra and panties match.
Now, for those that have only started watching wrestling recently, bra and panties matches used to be a common occurrence. You win the match when you strip your opponent down to their underwear, a climax that is exciting for twelve-year-old boys that don’t know what the internet is and no one else.
Luckily, someone managed to translate this excitement into a bra and panties mode on the video game. If live women wrestling over their bikinis is hot, then computer women clunkily grappling as a child presses “A” really fast must be EQUALLY hot, right?
It’s not. It’s a terrible type of match in real life and an even worse game mode. Wrestling games have barely been able to conquer stuff like hit detection and submissions. Them thinking that they could somehow master eroticism is like trying to woo a girl by telling her that you can almost fuck a pillow.
Obviously, Torrie Wilson means for this challenge to sound sexy, but she’s already in her bra and panties, and Brock Lesnar is already in his, ummm, dude panties. Are they going to get re-dressed? That sounds exhausting. And look, I KNOW that she’s using a wrestling reference to say “Wanna bang?” but the terrible nerd in me needs to remind Lesnar and Torrie to obey the basic rules of the match.
Then they cut to Brock holding Torrie’s pink bra and smugly saying “I win.”
Okay, are they implying that Lesnar and Torrie got it on, and then Brock came back to the camera crew to show off Torrie’s bra that they already saw on a hot lady? Or, and this option is far worse, is there a topless Torrie walking around the hallway, because future UFC Heavyweight Champion Brock Lesnar just yanked her bra off? You can argue all you want about how pro wrestling has gotten worse, but rarely do modern wrestling shows or commercials end with the ol’ “Haha. I took off her bra BECAUSE MUSCLES” routine.
And then, both to cut Lesnar’s “triumph” out from under him, and to somehow hint that the viewer is getting the better end of the deal here, the announcer says “No, Brock. WE ALL win.” Do we, though? I don’t want to argue with the announcer or Literal Godzilla Brock Lesnar, but I feel like I need more to get me to buy this game than a montage of wrestlers (a third of which have committed multiple homicides) and a woman who is probably looking for her bra right now.