Tag Archives: Royal Rumble

Four Years of Terrible Royal Rumbles

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I’m sorry in advance to those who are on this page for my usual anime/game related posts. I did say in November that I was going to stay away from topics like sports, specifically professional wrestling because I wanted to keep this page away from that kind of stuff and keep it down to two main topics.

But after tonight, I can’t help myself. I need to vent a little.

I didn’t watch the 2013 Royal Rumble, but I’ve heard people say it’s bad, so perhaps it’s now been five straight years of terribly booked Royal Rumble matches, but for me it’s just been four. Regardless, for the match that wrestling fans arguably look forward to the most every year, four or five straight years of the match being underwhelming is not good at all. In fact, for something that should be so easy to put together, the fact WWE has failed to do it so many years in a row now is such a shocking fact. I don’t pretend to be a master writer/booker, but holy fucking shit, how hard is it to book a match that’s full of surprises and fun moments and have the fans leave happy?!

Now I could do this rant in many different ways, but here’s how I’m going to do it. I’m going to separate every problem I had into separate talking points rather than turn this into a clusterfuck. So here we go:

#1: There were no real surprises
#1: There were no real surprises

Now before you question this, yes I am saying this despite the fact Tye Dillinger did indeed debut at #10 in the Rumble. But here’s my reasoning for why this isn’t a surprise. Did we all not expect this? Did we all not assume that with Dillinger doing nothing on NXT other than losing that it made sense for him to debut in the Rumble? I don’t consider Tye Dillinger a surprise entrant, so much as it being a surprise that the WWE actually listened to fans and didn’t pull out an easy booking decision from under us.

But in this year’s Royal Rumble match, there really weren’t any surprises. There wasn’t a real shocking debut, there wasn’t even a legend making a comeback for a fun 1-3 minute run in the match. Now this Rumble was pretty stacked so did the match need a legend return? Maybe not, but we’ve become so accustomed to at least one every year, so to not have one this year, it makes the match almost feel empty. The whole Rumble match has become a night of surprises and this match had none of that. Except WWE probably considered this year’s #30 as a surprise, which brings me to…

#2 - Roman Reigns AGAIN?!
#2 – Roman Reigns AGAIN?!

In the last two Royal Rumble matches, how did Roman Reigns’ involvement affect the match? Both times the crowd completely flattened out and turned on the entire match for the rest of the night. So after two straight years of the crowd giving zero fucks for Roman Reigns in the Rumble, what does WWE do? Put him in the final spot where people were expecting ANYONE BUT ROMAN REIGNS!!!

How many fucking times is WWE going to do this until they learn that no one wants him to be the top guy? Now you can argue that this entry had a purpose, it was to eliminate the Undertaker. But if that’s the case, did Roman have to take the last spot, could he not have been in the Rumble earlier? Once again it brings this idea that the WWE wants to give Roman special treatment, just like last year when they kept him out of the match for over half of it. But at least he didn’t win the match again this year, which brings me to the third subject I want to talk about…

#3 - Randy Orton. In 2017! Really?!
#3 – Randy Orton. In 2017! Really?!

Think about what this pay-per-view was. John Cena won the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. Brock Lesnar, Goldberg and Undertaker showed up for the Rumble. And now Randy Orton has won the Royal Rumble.

I was not aware 2017 was the year of the time machine, because it feels like we went back 10 years.

Of all the people to win, why Randy Orton? It seems very apparent that the end goal for WrestleMania in Orlando is for Bray Wyatt to win the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at Elimination Chamber and the match be Orton/Wyatt for the title. This program didn’t need the title, so why was this necessary?! At least if Chris Jericho won the Rumble, it would’ve made some sense, because Kevin Owens is the current WWE Universal Champion. But with Orton winning the Rumble, how the hell do you have John Cena lose the belt two weeks later, to Wyatt of all people?!

Which brings an even worse option. What if the “main event” at WrestleMania this year is Randy Orton challenging John Cena for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship? Oh my god, if the time machine theory was true, this would be the proof. I’m almost convinced that the match for this belt will be some triple threat or fatal 4-way where Wyatt and Styles would be included. Either way, Orton winning in my mind creates zero interesting results for WrestleMania matches. I do not understand the logic for Orton winning. How the betting odds put Orton so high, I don’t know what they knew but holy hell they got the right tip-off.


These were the three big things that really pissed me off with this year’s Royal Rumble match. There are little things I can go through as well, for example I didn’t like the whole Lesnar/Goldberg/Taker being part of the last five entrants, they really put a halt to any potential surprises (not that any happened anyways) by having three out of the last five spots already being figured out. There were also a few guys that weren’t necessary in the Rumble, Apollo Crews, Sheamus, Cesaro, Xavier Woods, Enzo Amore (it pains me to say it) there were a number of guys we really didn’t need to see in the Rumble, some of those spots could’ve gone to someone like a Samoa Joe, Tyler Bate/Pete Dunne and like I said earlier, a legend or two.

And honestly, it’s not like I hated the pay-per-view, I enjoyed pretty much all the matches on the main card. But the Rumble this year for me was meh at best and a really frustrating Rumble match from a booking perspective. Myself and the two friends I watched the Rumble with were all completely at a loss for how this match was structured, particular towards the end. And we’re not cut from the same cloth, all three of us have different ideas of how things should be done in wrestling, we don’t usually agree on everything. But this time, we all shared the same opinion: this year’s Rumble was quite possibly the worst booked Rumble match of all-time, or at the very least, the most confusingly booked Rumble of all-time.

Four fucking years. I can’t believe people are paid to write this garbage. Might as well get the Fifty Shades of Grey writer to book next year’s Rumble.

Royal Rumble Review

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So the Royal Rumble has come and gone. How did it fare? Was it a third straight year of everlasting boos, or did WWE finally knock a Rumble match out of the park? With John and Katelyn on hand to witness this pay-per-view, let’s go through what happened!

Dean Ambrose def. Kevin Owens to retain the WWE Intercontinental Championship

Adam: Owens – 3.5/5 John: Owens – 4/5 | Katelyn: Ambrose – 4/5

  • Michael Cole apparently can’t make sentences when he’s excited
  • Dean’s clothesline wasn’t super slow this time
  • Couple cool table spots, including the final bit

The New Day (Kofi Kingston/Big E) def. The Usos to retain the WWE Tag Team Championships

Adam: New Day – 3/5 John: New Day – 2.75/5 | Katelyn: New Day – 3/5

  • “I’ve Raised New Day’s Attack Points by 700 Points!” Yu-Gi-Oh! sign
  • Why does it feel like the Usos were the heels in this match?
  • Great ending with Big E catching (whichever) Uso mid-splash and hitting the Big Ending

Kallisto def. Alberto del Rio to win the WWE United States Championship

Adam: del Rio – 2.5/5 John: Kallisto – 2.75/5 Katelyn: del Rio – 3.25/5

  • Nice sudden Salida del Sol
  • Cole refusing to acknowledge that del Rio dropkicked Kallisto’s knees instead of hitting him with a double knee
  • No interference from the League of Nations? No finisher from del Rio?

Charlotte def. Becky Lynch to retain the Women’s Divas Championship

Adam: Lynch – 3/5 John: Charlotte – 3.5/5 Katelyn: Charlotte – 3.25/5

  • “Well Ric Flair IS a kiss stealer…”
  • Becky literally could’ve just kept the armbar on with the jacket over her
  • How was either time Flair got involved NOT a DQ?!
  • Sasha Banks returning makes up for everything

Triple H wins the Royal Rumble and the WWE World Heavyweight Championship

Adam: HHH – 4/5 John: Wyatt – 4/5 Katelyn: HHH – 4.25/5

  1. Roman comes in to a clear boo-sided reaction.
  2. Buzz kill! Rusev is #2, seems like League of Nations is coming out one-by-one, we’ll see at #3, never mind he’s already gone,
  3. AJ STYLES!!! But why couldn’t he just have been #2 and WHY THE FUCK DID THEY NOT HAVE THE CAMERA ON THE TITANTRON?!
  4. Is it my eyes…when you look at me? Tyler Breeze! Gone immediately, in the doghouse.
  5. The Royal Rumble streak continues!!! Curtis Axel! Streak’s over immediately.
  6. It’s time for someone to kick some Rooty Tooty Booty, Y2J!
  7. Demon Kane’s up and it’s the AJ Styles Super Sell Show.
  8. Goldust and he gets cheered this time, who knew what’d happen when you’re in before a Daniel Bryan elimination.
  9. Crowd really doesn’t like Ryback, lol!
  10. Kofi’s up, will the whole New Day be in this or is his entry under Freebird rules?
  11. Ooh-rah ooh-rah ooh-rah! Titus O’Neil. Goldust is eliminated.
  12. Wait? Is R-Truth actually in the Rumble? Or is it his bad? Never mind, he thinks it’s a ladder match. And he’s gone. Kofi uses Big E to stay in the Rumble
  13. Luke Harper is up, crazy to think 6 more spots are taken. League of Nations come out to destroy Roman, but not actually eliminate him, because that would be silly. *STUPID ROMAN MOMENT #1*
  14. Stardust is up, Cole says he’s been in 8 Rumbles, but no he hasn’t! Who’s this Cody guy they keep referring to? Also Cole is being a bit much here, telling Rusev to get off the table like he’s a child and then yelling that Vince is laughing, as if he can’t hear him and could fire him. AND THEY DIDN’T THROW HIM BACK IN!!! *STUPID ROMAN MOMENT #2*
  15. The Big Meh. Titus and Ryback get eliminated. Roman is being walked out by medics. *STUPID ROMAN MOMENT #3*
  16. The Man that WWE Creative Forgot, Neville. Roman can walk on his own power, but is walking away from the ring. Doesn’t he care about winning the match? Is he not the babyface?! *STUPID ROMAN MOMENT #4*
  17. Strowman is up next and eliminates Kane immediately. And then Big Show as well. Torch being passed for a new big man?
  18. Kevin Owens up next, limping to the ring. Great sell job. Who knew that was a thing? And he eliminates AJ. Well we’ve got our Wrestlemania match for Styles. Great way to get Owens over as a heel. But I’m very sad.
  19. Ambrose is next, selling a little as well.
  20. SAMI ZAYN!!! I can’t believe it! Goes right after Owens and eliminates him.
  21. Erick Rowan. Yaaaaaaaaaaaay. Neville’s eliminated. Stardust’s eliminated. Wyatts dominating.
  22. Mark Henry out to even the odds. I actually called this spot during the countdown, kinda proud of it. Also, he had a costume change, his attire in the pre-show was black/white. He’s tossed out immediately by the Wyatts. Zayn’s gone too. It’s been booked so well (minus Roman) but man these early eliminations suck.
  23. Brock comes out to really even the odds. I totally forgot he was in this at the time. Rowan’s eliminated.
  24. Jack Swagger. I can’t believe this is a thing. And he’s #24. Really, WWE? This late? Gets an immediate F5 and elimination.
  25. Miz. Yaaaaaaaaaaaaay. I’ll give him credit though, he stays outside and says “Now is not the time.”. Harper’s eliminated.
  26. Alberto’s up next. Also Roman still isn’t back, this is ridiculous. Surviving the odds, my ass. Brock eliminates Strowman, Bray’s got no help when he comes out.
  27. Speaking of Bray, here he comes. Wyatts stick around though and all of them together eliminate Brock.
  28. Ziggler’s next. This potential final four looks sad, tells you the state of WWE’s roster (injuries included of course). Miz finally enters now that Brock’s gone.
  29. Sheamus is here, so that leaves #30. Roman finally shows up and starts wrecking. Miz is gone. Del Rio’s gone. *STUPID ROMAN MOMENT #5*
  30. Triple H is number #30. I don’t like this placement, it’s not cunning enough for this situation. Convinced Roman’s winning now. Fans are cheering who’s supposed to be the biggest heel. Trading finishers right now, this is getting bad. Fans are starting to crap on it again. Ziggler’s gone. JBL can’t count to six. Wyatt/Triple H standoff, fans don’t care. Wyatt’s gone. Jericho’s gone. Final four is Sheamus, Triple H, Roman and Ambrose. Shield/Authority. And the crowd goes mild. Sheamus goes next and then Triple H eliminates Roman! Holy shit! Crowd goes nuts. Triple H and Ambrose are the final two?! Who called that?! Crowd is going insane. WWE after 15 shitty minutes just saved the Rumble. And Triple H wins his 14th world title. Wow.
  • Way too many of the more popular stars were eliminated early. Styles should’ve been there a lot longer, Zayn had barely any time, Lesnar didn’t do much, they could’ve done a lot more
  • Regardless of the result, the entire booking of Reigns in this Rumble (aside from being eliminated) was absolutely horrendous. The entire point of the match was him surviving 29 other men and he skipped legitimately half the Rumble (was out by #14, came back at #29)
  • Very happy there were no comedic or legend returns in this Rumble
  • A few useless entries (Swagger, Miz, Breeze [kills me to say that])
  • If Roman’s booked to be forced into the #1 spot, what would’ve been stopping Vince from having the League of Nations all come out in sequence? And when they attacked him and brought him outside the ring, how stupid was it that they didn’t get him over the top? The Wyatts did that for Brock, how does the most intelligent man in the business, Vince McMahon not just get them all to throw him out?

Katelyn wins with 4 out of 5 predictions.

Overall Score – 3.75/5

Top 10 Royal Rumble Surprise Entrants

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The 2011 Royal Rumble having 40 entrants instead of the traditional 30 left the door open for an extra number of surprise entrants and Diesel (aka Kevin Nash) was one of them. To see him sporting the old-school WWF gear rather than his WCW attire was refreshing, bringing back old memories of him and Shawn Michaels together, amongst many others. It was a cool moment just to see him back, although his time in the match was nothing special.

09

This was rather unexpected, granted not as much as the incredible comeback career he had after his Rumble return. Specifically targeting his brother Cody, Goldust’s return set up a feud that for some reason never really saw the time it should’ve gotten. However his return was a huge surprise and the following couple years after were arguably some of his best work, for example his tag match with Cody against the SHIELD, one of the most emotionally investing matches we’ve seen this decade in WWE.

08

This is one of the few Rumble returns in the last 10 years that WWE actually managed to shut the fuck up about and because of that, it was one of the biggest pops we’ve heard in a Rumble match in recent memory. Convinced he was long gone, hearing “One of a Kind” suddenly start playing really lit up the crowd. Granted, other than winning the title from Cena at One Night Stand, WWE really never did treat RVD very well since that return. But at the very least we got an awesome moment from it.

07

After a destructive run from the CM Punk version of the Nexus, number 21 had the crowd erupt when the words “Can you dig it…SUCKAAAAAAA!!!” played for the first time in quite a while. Matt Striker marking out really added to the moment, regardless of people’s opinions of him, clearly WWE didn’t enjoy it. But Booker’s return marked a super awesome moment when it comes to Rumble surprises, although it didn’t last terribly long due to the numbers game. But it’s okay, he’s got a really good announcing career going on! *sarcasm*

06

The picture makes this set of returns look terrible, but in terms of an actual moment in history, this was huge. To have both Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka and Rowdy Roddy Piper in the same ring together, that same rivalry we all remember from the Piper’s Pit coconut moment. It was incredible, if you were a fan during that era, this moment was absolutely tremendous for you. As it should be.

05

The earliest entry on this list, Mick’s return in 2004 was a crazy setup. I believe it was Test that was supposed to come out to the ring at that spot, but he was found lying on the floor, out. Austin who was the Commissioner at the time, I believe, yells at someone and tells them that they’re in the match instead. And then we hear that familiar car wreck sound and out comes Mrs. Foley’s baby boy! Of course, this was to continue a rivalry that he’d been having with the “Legend Killer” at the time, Randy Orton. It was a great moment in the Rumble, the look on Orton’s face alone sold it so well.

04

My personal favourite moment in the Rumble, which leads to a wish I have about the future Rumbles, having to do with Asuka. But Kharma suddenly showing up in the 2012 Rumble was amazing. Someone scaring the fuck out of Michael Cole is good enough, but for her to actually get legitimate offense, including her finisher on a male wrestler was huge for that time, given the state of the Women’s Divas division. Poor Dolph, he never stood a chance.

03

Another return that was kept quiet, in the last few years no less! After Ziggler got the #1 spot and had a promo telling everyone it doesn’t matter, so just send out #2 already was a prime introduction to a huge surprise in a returning Jericho. Which is a real shame to think about now, when this year’s Rumble having a returning Jericho is so haphazard. A man of his talent and star power shouldn’t be this “Meh.”. Ever.

02

Returning from a serious injury to winning the Rumble match, Tazz said it best when he nearly said “Holy Shit!” into the headset. And it was positioned perfectly, near the very end to a crowd of already exhausted wrestlers. The “Ultimate Opportunist” indeed. And I’m a huge Edgehead as well, so while I think this deserves the spot it’s in, there may be a little bias in this one.

01

The current mark in me is scoffing at this moment and wanting to vomit, but I can’t deny that this was the most shocking and surprising return in Royal Rumble history. SuperCena was supposed to be out far longer with a serious (I think it was a shoulder tear or something?) injury and he returned to be #30 in the Rumble, win and go onto WrestleMania. Of course Cena gets that treatment, just wait for the 2020 Rumble when Roman gets the same shtick. Either way, the crowd went crazy when this happened and it’s understandable. He wasn’t in “Let’s go, Cena! CENA SUCKS!!!” territory just yet.


 

And there’s my Top 10 Royal Rumble Surprise Entrants! If you’ve got a different order or names I forgot to mention, don’t hesitate to leave them in the comments below!

What Should Happen in the 2016 Royal Rumble match?

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So this Sunday will be the Royal Rumble. The past two years, WWE has made an absolute farce of the match, both times having to do with Daniel Bryan, the second time also having partially to do with Roman Reigns. So with this year’s Rumble not only being for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, but the match that will truly show us just how Roman Reigns is going to be booked for the rest of his career, I figured I’d answer a bunch of questions I’ve seen asked and I’d like to answer about the match itself.

Question #1: Should Roman Reigns win the Royal Rumble?

Answer: No, absolutely not. This also has nothing to do with me not liking Reigns, this is purely to save him from becoming John Cena 2.0. Personally, if you really want to get the fans behind him again, don’t have him be the last person eliminated, don’t have him even in the final four. Give him the same spot Daniel Bryan got, but y’know what? Let’s do it even better. Have him eliminated right away by entrant #2, Brock Lesnar. That way when they fight next, Roman’s beyond an underdog in the match, Brock took him out of the Rumble before he even got his feet wet.

Question #2: So if Roman’s not winning the Rumble, who should?

Answer: Easy. Brock Lesnar. Ideally, you set up their second match at Wrestlemania 32, a la Tanahashi/Okada at this year’s Wrestle Kingdom. Have Roman come out after the Rumble and admit he got cocky last year, thought he was invincible and would’ve easily won. This year however will be different, he knows he had to work harder and now that he won the championship (twice too already…), he understands the responsibility of being the man. Should he bet Lesnar this Wrestlemania? I say no, but that’s another day of booking.

Question #3: Should Daniel Bryan be in the Rumble?

Answer: If Roman exits early, yes. If he is planned to be at the very end and win it though, not a chance and I’m positive WWE knows this now (if they don’t, they’re fucking idiots). The whole “Is Daniel Bryan Healthy?” situation aside, if he is cleared to compete, he should only be in the match if Roman’s not the focus at the end (which he will be) and if you’re setting up a feud, perhaps with someone like an AJ Styles? Speaking of…

Question #4: Should AJ Styles be in the Rumble?

Answer: Abso-fucking-lutely! I don’t give a fuck about it not being a surprise, you could tell me he’s coming out at #24, I’m still marking the hell out at #24! If you want to make this guy a serious competitor on the roster, debut him in the Rumble and actually have Cole/JBL put him over, none of this “Oh my!” crap either (I’ll get to more of this later). Make Styles look important, he’s such a key player, he deserves to be in the Rumble match even though he’s never wrestled a match in WWE yet (not counting Velocity). And not only that, have the wrestlers look at him as if to say “Ohhh shit…”, because THEY SHOULD KNOW WHO HE IS! He’s one of the best wrestlers in the world currently, who gives a flying fuck that he hasn’t been in WWE, where apparently everywhere else doesn’t exist.

Question #5: Should there be any not-serious surprise entrants in this year’s Rumble?

Answer: Like the Boogeyman? No. I don’t want to see any comedy names like Santino, I don’t want any legends that are too old to be considered a threat like say Scott Hall or Jake Roberts. This Rumble is for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, if anyone’s going to make a surprise debut or return, it needs to be someone who we can consider having some sort of chance to win it.

Question #6: Should any NXT stars be in the Rumble?

Answer: There are a couple I could conceivably accept being in the Rumble. Finn Balor, but only if you’re debuting the Balor Club, which honestly would make zero sense to me. So that leaves one person and that’s Samoa Joe. No one else in NXT right now can be considered a threat in the match, not Apollo Crews, not Baron Corbin, not any other NXT talent. Except one name you wouldn’t expect.

Question #7: Should any female talent be in this year’s Rumble?

Answer: There’s only one name right now that could work in this match and that’s Asuka. There’s zero chance of it happening, let’s be honest, but if there’s any female talent that could do something in the match, it’s the woman who we believe could actually knock a couple guys out. Can you imagine Asuka kicking the shit out of Tyler Breeze, or anyone in the Social Outcasts? That would be an incredible moment! But as far as we know, she may only be an NXT talent during her time here in WWE, so that possibility is extremely unlikely to ever happen, let alone this year’s Rumble.

Question #8: Should Mauro Ranallo be calling his first WWE pay-per-view at the Rumble?

Answer: That is a stupid question, of course he should. Take out Saxton or Lawler, whoever the third would have been, and stick Mauro in there. Yes, he’ll have to somehow mesh with Cole/JBL, but if there’s anyone who could make those two bearable, it’s Mauro. And you know he’d get a surprise entrant like AJ Styles over.

Question #9: Who will be have the most memorable spot in the Rumble?

Answer: I think this year may be the first year we get two unique elimination avoidances. One of course from Kofi Kingston, who may employ the New Day as help with it. The other could be Kallisto, who I think should have that memorable spot. We know they need a Latino star to get going and they’ve been trying to push him as of late (when not having him lose the title the same week he won it), so it makes sense to give him a special moment in the match.

Question #10: Who will get the most eliminations in the Rumble?

Answer: If it’s Reigns, I will cringe. He’ll have already surpassed John Cena in eliminations if he does. It should be Brock Lesnar, let’s be honest, but that all depends on the number he draws. With Reigns at #1, the chances of him getting the most eliminations increases tenfold and with WWE/Vince’s current booking of him, you know they figure if he breaks his won record, the fans (for some strange reason) will get behind him even more.

Question #11: Will the entry order seem fixed against Roman Reigns?

Answer: I imagine so. The League of Nations will all come out closely together and I still have a feeling Triple H will be #30 and possibly win the title. I want them to not do this, but I know they’re going to book the entire Rumble around Roman trying to beat 29 other men. It makes sense, right? The one match where it’s supposed to be every man for himself and it’s become everyone against Roman. Because that’s how you get someone over, you make them beat 29 men in the same night. Yeah, that’ll get the smart crowd to like him, make everyone else on the roster look incompetent.

Question #12: What do you think is going to happen at the Rumble?

Answer: Whatever I don’t want to happen. I’m willing to bet the entire match will be exactly this, except one of three endings. Roman will spend the entire match barely hanging on. The League of Nations will come out in the early, mid 20-s spots all in a row to constantly wear him down after he’s already gassed and somehow Reigns will eliminate them all. Lesnar will be somewhere between #25-27 and will destroy everyone else to the point that it’s just the two of them when #30 comes out: Triple H. Whether Reigns just eliminates Lesnar or not depends on the ending. So here’s the 3 possible endings

  1. Roman somehow beats the odds. *vomits*
  2. Brock Lesnar eliminates him to win (Triple H will not be in the Rumble).
  3. Triple H comes out at #30 or better yet, after Roman perceivably wins the Rumble, there’s a special #31 entrant unbeknownst to everyone and it’s Trips. He beats Roman to win the title.

Either way, we have Roman in the main event at Wrestlemania 32 whether we like it or not. It’s a matter of whether his opponent for the championship is Brock Lesnar, or Triple H.


So there you have it! That’s what I think we’ll be seeing in the Royal Rumble this Sunday? Got any thoughts? Leave ’em in the comments below!