The build-up to Fastlane was anything other than a rip-roaring freewheeling adventure the title promised. Save for the game efforts of AJ Styles bell-to-bell, SmackDown Live! has been diabolical for months, with the blue brand's banal battles fittingly putting a bullet in the current era of single-show pay-per-views.
In early-2018, WWE announced that supercards would be super-sized to include matches from both shows. Many ruefully compared this to 2007, when the company last abandoned the split show philosophy, just as many will probably compare Clash Of Champions and this very show to Bad Blood 2003 and No Mercy 2005 as rational arguments for the change.
The show wasn't so much a fast lane as an overtaking one - the company just about got where they needed to go in time for WrestleMania's hastening approach, but several stars were cut up in the process and at least one ended up in the hard shoulder. Marginally better than receiving the cold one, but will it ever actually be Rusev Day?
Still, better off done and dusted than still to come, eh? WWE would do well to obliterate all pay-per-views between Royal Rumble and WrestleMania if truth were told, even in cases such as this where the event marginally over-delivered on middling expectations. Pour one out for Fastlane as the last of the single-brand era, then. Better that than drink-driving on the Road To WrestleMania anyway, the creative team are already writing like they've had enough...
Square eyes on a square head, trained almost exclusively to Pro Wrestling, Sunderland AFC & Paul Rudd films. Responsible for 'Shocking Plans You Won't Believe Actually Happened', some of the words in our amazing Wrestling bookazines (both available at shop.whatculture.com), and probably every website list you read that praised Kevin Nash.