Tag Archives: tombstone piledriver

Fresh Content Day 34: The Lost Art of the Finishing Move

This is going to a) sound old-manish, and 2) possibly infringing on the Kevin’s gimmick over at My 1-2-3 Cents.

I was watching Wrestlemania 33 last night and today over my lunch hour. What I learned – among other things – is that a finishing move isn’t much of a finisher anymore. This isn’t news. It’s just becoming more and more obvious as time goes on.

I remember a time where a big boot and running leg drop was all it took to fell an opponent.

And when the Undertaker gave you a Tombstone Piledriver, you stayed driven heaped in a pile (okay, that one didn’t make much sense).

Right now, I’m going to make the HOT TAG to Kevin Hunsperger for his 1-2-3 cents.

Finishing moves still have a place in wrestling, but it seems on big shows those finishers are often as effective as a screen door on a submarine. Now wrestlers kick out just before the referee’s hand hits the mat for the third time. This type of storytelling is very frustrating as a fan of the old school days of the business.

False finishes are okay from time to time, but at WrestleMania for example, I think a Superstar either kicked out of or broke the finishing maneuver of their opponent in every match. It’s come to be expected these days.

We all know professional wrestling is a show. But I think when you start watering down the moves the men and women have made their signatures it takes away from the realism of the contest at hand. When the Undertaker hits his opponent with a Tombstone, I want the referee to then count three. A kick out on a rare occasion is fine as long as it tells the story at hand. When Kane did it for the first time ever, it was special.

But then Batista, Edge, Shawn Michaels, Triple H, CM Punk, Brock Lesnar, Bray Wyatt and Roman Reigns have kicked out of the finisher at WrestleMania. Some of those mentioned Superstars have kicked out of more than one Tombstone in a match. I suppose this would be fine because there’s a year of separation between incidents, but Seth Rollins kicks out of Triple H’s Pedigree, Kevin Owens escapes the Wall of Jericho and Shane McMahon gets out of the Styles Clash all on the same show. It’s exhausting.

I realize I’m out of the WWE’s target demo. I also realize a lot of indy shows use this style of booking. But I’m from the school of thought when you’re hit with the finisher, you’re done. 1-2-3.

I’m in agreement with Kevin, here. I think the use of finishers has gone by the wayside because no talent wants to look weak in their match, so they all have to kick out at least once (unless it’s “enhancement talent”).

If these moves are no longer finishing off opponents (which is why they’re called finishing moves in the first place), just call them moves, or signature moves, and let’s be done with it. They should be special moves used once to finish the match, or in a crazy twist, as KH said, a false finish once in a while to build up a talent would be smart. But overuse has diminished these moves.

In other words…I’m old and set in my ways.