Tag Archives: Brock Lesnar

Monday Night Raw Recap & Review 8/6/12

Tonight’s show opens up with a new credits sequence, and new logo. Why they waited until the 1002nd episode of Raw to debut a new credits sequence, or logo, beats the hell out of me. I guess the guy who edits all of the promos went insane after the ridiculous amount of video packages he had to make for last weeks show. Well the new Raw GM AJ skips out, and announces right off the top of the show, a series of matches featuring Big Show vs Randy Orton, and Daniel Bryan vs John Cena. Before she says what her third match up will be, CM Punk interrupts her, and walks out to a kinda-sorta mixed applause from the crowd. The fans seemed to mostly be on CM Punk’s side, despite a few fans giving thumbs down here and there.

Punk begins to make a promo explaining his actions last week, with him yelling in AJ’s face, demanding respect. He does get “What-ed” by the audience while making his apology, and booed as well. He then starts to make the typical coward-heelish action of trying to butter up the GM and asking for the Triple Threat match between Punk/Cena/Show to be cancelled. AJ says her decisions stands, and Punk accuses her of getting revenge for his refusal of AJ’s marriage proposal a few weeks ago. He also points out how lame it would be if she started acting like yet another one of those Evil-GM’s for no reason, which falls in line with his “No bullshit, tell the truth” character. He’s riding a pretty thin line between actual truth teller, and tweener heel. Then John Cena comes out and says words about respect. I don’t know what the rest of what he said was past the word “respect”, because I passed out from boredom. The gist of it, was CM Punk and John Cena measuring each other’s dicks. Their insults and taunts were pretty grade-school.

” I beat you last year!” ” No you didn’t!” “Yes I did!” “Nuh uh!”

Awful. Punk, you’re better than that. Anyhow, Big Show enters because he legally has to. He doesn’t do anything, but he shows up, because that’s the law. AJ then says that CM Punk will be opening the first match of the night, with the WWE Universe picking his opponent. The selections were picked on twitter, and were: #PunkMiz, #PunkKane, and #PunkMysterio. I voted for #PunkMiz, because Kane is Kane, and I hate Rey Mysterio. Also Miz could use the push. I kinda like the idea of being able to push the stars we like, but a part of me thinks that the whole damn thing is rigged to begin with, either that or I really underestimate how much people inexplicably like Rey Mysterio. http://youtu.be/gfGuEvdoHyI So even though I dislike Rey Mysterio, I have to admit he’s a pretty good worker. Add to that that I’ve never really seen Punk have a bad match, and we had the makings of a decent match unfolding. Jerry Lawler made some idiotic comments about Punk needing to “earn respect”, which means either in the canon of WWE that ROH doesn’t exist in its entirety, or he’s just retarded and forgot all the events of last year, because if ANYBODY has “earned” respect it’s Punk. I literally cannot understand how you could think he hasn’t. Arguably you could say John Cena has “earned” it, except his whole Robo-Cena act bores me to tears, because it’s so repetitive.

This is every match of his. Every single one.

I gotta say the match made both of them look pretty good. Mysterio’s acrobatics work well on a guy with the build of Punk, because he’s not a Goliath style monster for him to overcome, and thusly his moves are more believable in their effectiveness. Punk though, did manage to pick up the win by pulling up his knees when Mysterio attempted a dive off the top rope, and landed the GTS. He then (shoot?) sold a mouth injury from Mysterio’s 619 finisher, and let out his patented BEST IN THE WORLD top rope yell.

Coming back from the break, we see an actually pretty badass comeback promo for Wade Barrett. The guy’s sporting a beard now, and seems to have a new “bare knuckle boxer” gimmick, that’s reminiscent of the UK’s Charles Bronson. The guy looks leagues tougher than he used to be, and the promo was effective at communicating that he’s not to be messed with. Good Job Video Package Editor Guy!

Back to the actual show, and Alberto Del Rio shows up backstage to talk with AJ. He butters her up, and tries to push for his whole “I don’t need to wrestle these plebes” thing. She says she had nothing planned for him, and is happy to hear it. But, he makes the mistake of saying that he thought she was going to do something “Crazy”, and she takes offense. She then puts him in a match, immediately. AJ seems to be a very wrestling oriented GM, who is eager to actually make wrestlers wrestle, and not have stupid goddamned tag team matches all the time. I knew she wouldn’t let me down. Oh AJ, shine on you cra- I mean uh… sexy diamond. Yeah. Then they had, “Hey guess what, TRIPLE H/BROCK LESNAR VIDEO PACKAGE. THE SAME ONE THEY SHOWED 5 TIMES LAST WEEK. SUMMERSLAM! IT’S HAPPENING! TRIPLE H! BROCK LESNAR! CARE ABOUT IT! CAAAAAAARRRE” promo, yet again. If I ever see Brock Lesnar or Triple H in person, I’m going to be the most annoying, autograph demanding, horrible fan I can possibly be to them. Annoy them as much as these promos have annoyed me.

ADR enters the match with a boot still loose, presumably from having “just gotten ready.” I’m guessing that ADR’s whole “I don’t wanna wrestle until Summerslam” thing, was actually a meta attempt to get pushed more by whoever actually books the matches. As a heel he says he doesn’t want to do something, and falling into a cliched reverse psychology trap, the booker gives ADR match after match, where he pummels people relentlessly until he snaps their arms in half with his cross armbar. Christian this time, is the victim, and Christians around being Christian, until ADR pulls off his loose boot, and conks Christian in the head with it when the Ref isn’t looking. Because an empty boot to the head is somehow more damaging than one with a foot in it.

After ADR wins (duh), Sheamus shows up on the Titan-Tron, and steals Alberto Del Rio’s car that we previously saw him park backstage. Sheamus is the worst face in the world. I think from now on, whenever Sheamus does something really shitty or stupid or boring, I’m just gonna write “SCREW SHEAMUS”, and save myself another repetitive paragraph wherein I am trying to find a new creative way to say just that.

Hey, how cool is scheduled wrestling matches actually happening? Like, you know, an actual card being announced and followed through, and not full of tons of filler? Even though Randy Orton annoys me, I’ll support the idea of actual wrestling being the focal point of my wrestling show, any damn day of the week. So I don’t like Randy Orton. He’s dumb, his tattoos are dumb, and his “viper” gimmick is stupid and dumb. He’s a big dumb dummy who is so dumb he reverts me back to an age where I can only make infantile insults about what a doody-head he is. So I enjoyed seeing him get clobbered by Big Show, and was really fearing his typical mid-match momentum shift, where he body slams the guy from an irish whip, and then hulks out or whatever that weird ground pounding thing he does is, and RKO’s his opponent. Well, it was happening, and I was about to begin audibly groaning, when Show countered it into a choke slam. Then Orton kicked out of the choke slam, and the match continued. They then kept exchanging blows outside of the ring, resulting in a stalemate between the two of them, when the match came to a double count-out. Which I have to admit, was legitimately surprising, and somehow not a disappointing end to that match. They built up Orton without making Show look bad, and Show gets to still seem strong. Of course, after the match Show tries to hit the WMD on Orton, who finally lands the RKO on him, looking pretty ridiculous while doing so.

It seems like The Ryback shows up sometimes on Raw, and occasionally he’ll have a burst blood vessel in his left eye. Or a very bad case of pink eye. Or he’s having some kind of weird half-stoner stroke, and every time he smokes pot only half of his body gets high, thus resulting in his one bloodshot eye. I’m guessing they want us to think that he’s a hardcore fighter, and someone is always smashing him in the face hard enough to do that to him, but I’m inclined to think he’s really prone to quick fits of anger for no reason. What’s that? Big Bang Theory is eclipsing Community in the ratings again? THE RYBACK MUST RYBACK TV WITH HIS HEAD. THE RYBACK HUNGRY FOR GOOD THURSDAY NIGHT MUST SEE TV. FEED ME MORE DANNY GLOVER.

Yeah, that can’t feel good.

As for the match, The Ryback Ryback’s Curt Hawkins and Tyler Reks again, in a match identical to his previous matches with them. While I like The Ryback, he’s starting to reach Funkasaurus levels of repetition. Blegh. Feed ME more, The Ryback. Feed me an original match.

Alright! This is how it should be! One wrestling match, immediately followed by another wrestling match! Awesome! Either this means they’re actually putting more wrestling into their 3 hour show, or the next hour after the other two previously announced matches will just be endless promos and skits that will make me eat my words about the WWE actually taking steps towards improving their product. I was about to start writing about how these guys were imprving in ring, because their match was building up in a nice fashion, until the Primetime Players, AGAIN do the whole “we had enough of this” thing, and backwards walk out of the ring. Then Kofi Kingston’s horrible music comes on, and the mere presence of the Tag Team Champions stuns the Primetime Players long enough for Primo and Epico to pull them forcefully back into the ring, where they pulled off a clean win. Yay. After a video package reminder of who Damien Sandow is for the unwashed masses, we see Josh Matthews interview him about his actions last week, where he attacked the Funkasaurus. Damien then goes on to say, more or less, that he hates dancing, and considers it foolishness that contributes to the delinquency of society. How goddamned hilarious is that? Damien Sandow hates dancing. Dancing! I can imagine him seeing the trailer for Step Up 5: Back 2 Tha Streets: Tha Reckoning 4 Tha Streets That Step Up AGAIN, and sneering derisively at it. I’d be right there with him, and then we’d play a game of chess together while sipping fine whiskey. Amazing.

Finally, FINALLY somebody comes out, and just beats the shit out of Funkasaurus during his long, ostentatious, unnecessary dance intro. He just comes out, tackles him, and just laus into his leg pretty horrifically. Then he just stands over his writhing body, and yells I TOLD YOU. YOU DID THIS TO YOURSELF, over and over. Then, when off camera, presumably cartwheels his way out of there. This is why Damien Sandow is awesome.

He is the best heel.

Backstage, AJ is sitting with Daniel Bryan. She tells him she thinks he has anger issues, which may or may not be true. He does mention how it’s probably because she left him at the altar, but stipulates that if he beats John Cena tonight, she should turn the Cena/Show/Punk match, into a 4 way match. She then tells him no, and that he already has a match at Summerslam, against Kane. Bryan then stands up and starts NOing at AJ, while she YES’s back, until they do it simultaneously, which somehow makes AJ defeat him verbally. He stomps off in a huff, and I’m left feeling really bummed we won’t get another chance for Daniel Bryan to become WWE champion.

There hasn’t been a Diva’s match on Raw in a long time, and while I love women’s wrestling, what the WWE Divas do barely counts as wrestling. But they’re both so goddamn gorgeous it’s still entertaining to watch. The thing about Kelly Kelly, is she’s just a relatively athletic model, and not really a wrestler, so all of her moves are really shout-ey and simplistic. Eve, while not a great wrestler either, is a slight step up against Kelly Kelly in terms of wrestling talent. That being said, they managed to give a fairly long match, for Divas anyway. In fact, I found myself surprised that it was as long as it was, and managed to make them both look good, in more ways than one. Mostly because Eve was dressed like this: Holy crap. And Kelly Kelly was in her typical barely not lingerie garb as well.

Oh… oh my.

Ahem. So yeah. Diva matches. Of notable length relative to past Divas matches. In skimpy clothes. Let’s have them actually improve their wrestling ability, and hot damn. I’m ready. Don’t let me down WWE. Don’t let me down. Who am I kidding? They’re totally gonna let me down.

Look folks! HBK is back! He was back as recently as two weeks ago, but he’s BACK! Again! He can’t really do his entrance that well anymore, and his hips are clearly hurting him, and his voice sounds like he’s been gargling asphalt every morning for the last 10 years, but HE’S BACK! Cheer for his ineptitude!

I know, I know, HBK is awesome, but man, it’s like watching your beloved old uncle slowly wander into senility, and he doesn’t even know it’s happening, so he keeps walking around talking about how much the WWE Universe appreciates him while making comments about he can’t walk that well or do his entrance anymore. Ok, I might have gotten metaphors and commentary mixed up there, but my point stands. I think. Also I wish HBK was my uncle. So HBK continues his promo, talking about Triple H and then mentions Brock Lesnar, so of course, Brock Lesnar’s music starts up. Before they even finished thie promo, I understood the purpose of it, and how it’s been done before. For a few years in a row, they had HBK come out to basically taunt Triple H/Undertaker into fighting each other, because for some reason, HBK is Triple H’s big brother/rival/frenemy/cypher, who constantly must make all of Triple H’s affairs his. He’s like a needy friend who’s also really nosy and butts into business that isn’t his. I had a few friends like HBK Then I challenged them to a Hell In A Cell match, and tombstoned them horribly. I believe all social problems can be solved with a modified pile driver or a quick suplex. Awkward date? Elbow drop the waiter! Weird party where you don’t know anyone but have to attend? Choke slam the host through the punch bowl! Can’t get an erection during sexy time? Stone Cold Stunner your cock, and spin into a repeating ouroboros of infinite pain and humiliation! I’m really torn, because I shoot hate Brock Lesnar and shoot love Paul Heyman, so their pairing makes me all conflicted inside. I like the idea of Paul Heyman promoting his “client” as an actual wrestler hellbent on wrestling. I also really like him legitimately referring to Brock Lesnar as “The Baddest Dude” in WWE today.

Pictured: Brock Lesnar.

But this promo was more or less just more boring fluff for that Triple H match, where HBK pulls out the “YOU MENTIONED HIS KIDS! THAT’S AWWWWFULLLL” thing, because that somehow makes the match more important or something. Blah blah blah. More wrestling please. Or alternatively, have Brock Lesnar actually quit WWE just like he has every other damn thing in his life. That’s right Brock, COME AT ME BRO.*

Then of course, Triple H comes out, and it gets all tense and shit, and points really hard at both of them, while vaguely threatening HBK. Lamesauce. After that we get to watch Sheamus’s Tout (ugh) of him with Alberto Del Rio’s car. Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler argue over whether or not it’s grand theft auto (it is), and then we get another match.

This was actually his real argument.

Chris Jericho comes out to join Cole and Lawler ringside to give commentary on Dolph Ziggler’s match. He then explains why he’s been wearing Dolph Ziggler’s pink shirt, by saying he found it in the trash, which is somehow meant as an insult, but really it makes him sound like a dirty trash picker. As for the actual match, Dolph Ziggler was dominant against Alex Riley. Big surprise. The only thing that made the match was when Dolph Ziggler started showing off doing Jericho’s classic cocky pin, and Jericho stands up to Tout Dolph right then and there, and of course, this distracts Dolph long enough for A-Ry to get the roll up pin. Normally I hate the “distraction/roll up” ending to matches, but they haven’t done it in a while, and the us of Tout (ughh) made it novel. Another Tout from Sheamus is shown. Seriously? What we’re getting now is footage of footage being touted? I like the amount of wrestling i’m getting tonight, but little dumb moments like this add up to make the overall pie shittier in flavor. So to speak.

So I guess Kane and Miz were gonna have a match tonight no matter what, and if the people had voted like I did for #PunkMiz, we’d be seeing Rey Mysterio vs Kane right now, or some combination of the three choices we were given. Either way, the big surprise was seeing Miz hold his own against Kane. It’s fascinating how a big-boy haircut and a new attitude can improve a wrestler who people previously took only as a joke. I give Kane a shit pretty passively, but sometimes he’s able to tap into a talent reserve and make a match really work. Miz and him traded a lot of spots until Kane got the upper hand, and ended the match with a choke slam, but the effort put out by Miz was noticeable, and the match did a good job of making Kane still seem strong, while not making Miz look like he’s being squashed or jobbed into hell. Coming back from the break, we see Sheamus deliver ADR’s Ferrarri, absolutely trashed and covered in dirt, making him an impolite bastard, as well as a felon. Screw Sheamus.

I’m loving Daniel Bryan’s new “insane” character, who is obsessed with nobody but him saying “Yes”, and now is fixated on saying NO all the time at people. Plus he keeps walking around clutching his head like the brain-grubs are hatching, and they crave the YES YES YESing from the audience to grow and thrive. The match opens up with a rousing clamber of anti/pro Cena chants, that Daniel Bryan detests, and John Cena seems confused by. Throughout the whole match in fact, they seemed to bewilder him, as if he’d never heard them before. Daniel Bryan at one point does an awesome face to face with another fan, where he yells NO right in their face, while they YES him right back. I’d mark the eff out if that happened to me. Anyhow, Daniel Bryan get’s the upper hand during the commercial break, and the inevitable Robo-Cena countdown clock begins. Eventually he hits the 5 moves of doom, but just as Cena goes for the Attitude Adjustment, Daniel Bryan locks him into a guillotine headlock. After a minute in the headlock, Bryan gets the advantage again, and builds up his newfound insanity powers to land a flying headbutt on Cena, but Cena still manages to kick out. After that, Daniel Bryan starts his signature kicking thing, which Cena counters in the STF, which Bryan re-counters into the YES-Lock, and for brief shining moment, I thought we were about to see Daniel Bryan beat Robo-Cena, but of course, he countered it again into the AA somehow. After he pins him, CM Punk’s music starts, and Punk enters the ring. He then raises his belt, as he has done to Cena so many times before. Suddenly, Cena throws CM Punk out-of-the-way, and Big Show enters to fight Cena. Cena raises Show into the AA, but in a repeat from last week, he knocks Show off Cena’s shoulders. He then grabs a headset and berates Jerry Lawler again, pointing out that he’s been letting people disrespect him, and that he won’t any longer. That he won’t let people say he’s “turned his back” on the WWE Universe, and even makes a comment referencing how Raw ends the same way it did the last two times. He then goes int he ring to take out Big Show, who catches Punk’s kick, and WMD’s him hard. Show follows it up with a WMD to Cena as well, and ends the show by grabbing the WWE title triumphantly, standing tall over Punk and Cena.

Woo Woo Woo. You know it.

So wow, tonight’s Raw seemed almost like an apology for last weeks. What with the entire IWC reacting pretty goddamned negatively to the entire hour of stupid Lesnar/Triple H promos, they jam-packed this Raw with wrestling, with nearly 10 whole matches, almost all of good length, and none of the skits or promos were overly long, and the annoying ones were kept thankfully short. I’m hoping this is a portrait of things to come, because it’s a definite step in the right direction for the WWE. Except for Sheamus. Screw Sheamus.

*actually please don’t come at me, you’d friggin’ kill me.

Monday Night Raw Recap & Review 7/30/12

Tonight’s Raw opens up with a quick bit on how the set quickly caught fire, in some kind of pyrotechnics test before the show actually started, or the audience was let in. It had no actual effect on the televised show, other than delaying the crowd into the arena for half an hour. I’m uncertain why they even bothered to tell us, other than to address the possible potential issue of viewers at home wondering why a small part of the Titan-Tron was a little black and smokey. This was followed up with a quick video package re-capping last weeks show, playing up all the important parts and excluding any and all mention of Charlie Sheen. They would then go on to repeat this news about the fire, 5 more times over the course of the show. Seriously.

After the end of last weeks show, people have been wondering what CM Punk’s exact motivations were for his attack on The Rock, even if they’re obvious and awesome. A recently shorn CM punk walks into the ring, grabs a mic, and lays down the law. He says that he takes issue with how Jerry Lawler said “CM Punk has turned his back on the WWE Universe”, at the end of Raw last week, and exits the ring, approaching Lawler directly, who sits there silently shitting his pants. Punk slams his championship on the Announcer’s Table, and just really starts giving Lawler shit for what a terrible commentator he is, continues to make great points about The Rock’s arrogance and generally explains all of his actions last week perfectly. The Rock is a washed up blowhard who shows up, says he’s the greatest when he isn’t, disrespects everyone without backing up his words like he used to, and makes the WWE play second fiddle to his Hollywood career, until he decides to randomly take back the championship as if it’s a foregone conclusion. Not to mention all of the inane baby talk he spouts and everyone pretends like it’s even 1/4 of the quality of promos or insults he used to throw out 12 years ago. Frankly, he’s been phoning it in the last year, and If I didn’t hate Cena so much, I would have been rooting against him at Wrestlemania 28. So seeing Punk once again, FINALLY actually speak up and become the Voice of The Voiceless, was excellent, and a return to form from the wise cracking, Jim-Halpert shrugmeister he had become for the past few months. Of course, all the Bandwagoners quickly jump ship and start boo-ing Punk for making his opinions well-known, despite cheering him for claiming to always do this in previous months.

“YEAH CM PUNK BEST IN THE WORLD WOOO HE ALWAYS SPEAKS HIS MIND I RESPECT HIM SO MUCH FOR THAT until he doesn’t say things I agree with! What the hell Punk I trusted you.”- All Ship Jumping Former CM Punk fans.

Screw the honey badger, CM Punk don’t care!

After leaving Jerry Lawler sitting there, with shit in his pants slowly collecting, Big Show’s music starts up, and he enters the ring. At first I thought he was gonna come out, and reiterate his point he made a few weeks ago about how it’d take just one thing to make the WWE Universe turn against CM Punk, and how they didn’t really respect him, but he goes on his usual heel schtick where he promotes himself as the true focal point of the end of Raw 1000. He then takes credit for being the reason Punk is still champion, and vows that he’ll be the next WWE Champion. Then John Cena runs in because his name was mentioned, and chases Big Show out of the ring, while Punk stands aside annoyed as hell. At this point, AJ walks out, clad in a suit as the new Raw GM. She quickly announces tonight’s main event, between Big Show and Cena, with the stipulation that the winner will face Punk at Summerslam for the championship. Punk stands aside not giving a crap, while Cena looks on in his dumb starbucks shirt.

Back from the break and we see a quick scene of Daniel Bryan walking past the office of the new GM, looking distraught.

After that quick Daniel Bryan bit, we get this match between Santino and Alberto Del Rio. Why? If this is an example of AJ’s booking, then she’s picking poor match ups, because really, how else can this go? They try to make some sort of sense of tension between commercial breaks, by having ADR take a bump from Santino that throws him outside the ring, but when back from the break it’s the normal case of ADR destroying his opponent in the ring.  I’m guessing they’re trying to build up Santino as an actual contender or something, because for a bunch of brief shining moments he’d gain some momentum before ADR quickly shut him down again. Santino even tries to pull out the Cobra, which ADR just sidekicks before trapping his arm in the cross armbreaker, because holy crap is the Cobra stupid, and how great would it be if ADR kayfabe broke Santino’s arm? He’d basically be stripping Santino of all his power forever.

Then Del Rio makes a great promo, saying how he just destroyed Santino, that Santino is beneath him, Sheamus is beneath him, and so is everyone else, so he will not compete any further until Summerslam, to get his WHC shot, which is the only thing that he finds worth his time. I really can’t disagree with him either. Why should he be wrestling idiots like Santino? Why isn’t he being put up against anyone who is actually of his caliber of talent? His whole “Eff this noise” attitude is something that makes sense to me, even if I will be missing him destroying all of the even remotely ethnic wrestlers on WWE’s roster. Summerslam better be the fulfillment of his destiny to become a champion, because holy hell, the dude deserves it. Also, I’ll save my obligatory weekly insult of Sheamus for later on in this article, if he shows up.

Returning from a break, Funkasaurus is already in the middle of his dance intro, which is a good thing, because that damn intro is so long. It’s then interrupted by Vickie Guerrero’s banshee shriek of EXCUSE ME, and she mocks the Funkadactyls for their dance moves, and starts dancing herself. She then busts out the patented Elaine-From-Seinfeld-Little-Kicks dance, thumbs up and all, until she herself is interrupted by Damien Sandow.

Our Intellectual Savior then shows the clip from last week, of DX attacking him, proclaiming himself once again as a martyr, and starts beating down Funkasaurus, and leaves triumphantly, in the name of non-irritating wrestling gimmicks all around.

I really love Damien Sandow. 1.) He’s a good wrestler, and 2.) his gimmick is hilarious, and necessary.

It also helps that’s he’s fancy AND classy to boot.

We need a wrestler like him, a guy who can come out, point out how stupid everything is, beat the crap out of them/it, and cartwheel his way out of there, all the while in pink and purple briefs and knee pads. Not to mention his totally luscious ascot/bathrobe combo he enters the ring in, because if anything, I am a man of comfort who appreciates the finer things in life. I think Sandow and I would get along well. We’d both lounge in our armchairs together, drinking different blends of exotic herbal tea, while watching Criterion blu-rays. Plus he’d probably be a really awesome Dungeon Master.

My fantasies of being best friends with Damien Sandow aside, we cut to a recap of the Jericho/Ziggler storyline. It’s storyline that could have a great build up, as I said last week, where Ziggler should destroy Jericho, and be the man to finally BREAK THE WALLS DOOOOWWWWN and break Jericho. If Jericho is gonna be leaving WWE, have him go out with a warriors death. Make him go down fighting, and leave it all out in the ring, defeated once and for all. But tonight anyway, we’re getting a tag team match, because GM’s just LOVE tag team matches and oh no… AJ. Don’t do this to me baby. We had something special. Don’t be this way. Don’t be Teddy 2.0. I’m begging you. SAVE ME JOHN LAURINAITIS!

Aww but you look so good in that suit there baby… Alright, I’ll let it slide this time.

After spending the last 48 minutes mustering his courage outside her office door, Daniel Bryan finally confronts AJ about last week. She immediately asserts herself by telling him to shut up. She then brings up the quick plot point from last week, where we saw what looked like a bunch of mental asylum orderlies being spoken to by Daniel Bryan, that I assumed was a red herring. He says they were his groomsmen pretty defensively, and she says he’ll have to deal with a match later tonight, that’ll pit him against Sheamus (ugh). He asks her if it’s for the title, and she NO NO NO’s him out of the room.

A video package starts to play, showcasing the retarded Triple H/Brock Lesnar storyline from last week. Seriously? How many recaps from Raw 1000 are we going to have? Is the “extra” hour in all of these new episodes of Raw just going to be an entire hour recapping the previous Raw? I guess they have to, to keep Brock Lesnar in the story without him actually being there, because his stupid quitter-contract doesn’t require him to actually wrestle any more than a set amount of dates this year, and they’re being saved for PPV’s almost exclusively. They also must think we’re amnesic Alzheimer goldfish, because they played this promo at least 5 more times after this.

There was a time when I would have really liked to have seen this match. That was about 6 months ago at Wrestlemania, because the “Quick-Strong” wrestler against the “Methodical-Technical” wrestler pairing of Sheamus/Bryan was in theory, a great idea. We all know how horribly they screwed that up, but it led to Daniel Bryan really getting over, so in hindsight it was a necessary evil. Daniel Bryan comes out YES-ing as usual, but then flips out in ring, saying that the fans have “No right” to chant YES anymore, and that is his thing alone. The crowd then taunts him by chanting it, and he responds by losing his mind and shouting NO over and over, like a broken man after being left at the alter by his bride. Oh wait…

Well, Sheamus enters, with a clearly healing black eye, because presumably, people can’t not punch him in the face upon seeing him. They then announce that the match will be a “Street fight”, which in WWE terms just means “You guys can wrestle outside of the ring if you want.” Bryan and Sheamus open up the match by keeping things in the ring. After a few minutes of trading moves, they slowly battle up the ramp, with Sheamus throwing Daniel Bryan around, until they reach the top of the entrance ramp. Bryan gets the upper hand by kicking Sheamus off of the ramp, all 4 feet onto the concrete below. Sheamus then writhes around in pain like his knee is hurt, and Bryan lays a flying knee into Sheamus’ face, and the fight cuts to commercial. After returning from the break, they’re both back in the ring, and Daniel Bryan has Sheamus in an arm lock.

They go back to trading blows, and the momentum between the two of them continues to shift back and forth, now with Sheamus gaining the advantage. He brings out a chair and a kendo stick, which Daniel Bryan wisely removes from the ring before they can be used on him. Sheamus kicks Bryan out of the ring, while the crowd chants audibly for tables. Daniel Bryan then uses the kendo stick on Sheamus, wacking him multiple times, letting out all of rage on Sheamus with each swing. Eventually Sheamus gets kicked by Bryan into a steel chair he set up in a turnbuckle. Sheamus grabs a hold of the steel steps, and sets them up, trying to slam Bryan into it, until Bryan counters Sheamus’ grab and throws him into the ring post.

At this point, even though I hate Sheamus, i’m just glad to see a match last a considerable amount of time on Raw. My joy was quickly shattered however, when Sheamus brogue kicked Daniel Bryan into the steel steps that had been set up in the ring. However, I gotta say, the match itself was quite refreshing, mostly because it was good, and long by modern WWE standards. Let’s get this kind of thing happening more often, cut out all the recapping, and Raw can really become something truly great once again.

After a recap of the CM Punk promo from an hour ago, ostensibly in case you’ve got some kind of Leonard Shelby Memento disease, and can’t make new memories longer than an hour or so. They cut back to Daniel Bryan being helped up by referees, claiming he’s hurt his neck and needs a doctor. So while a popular, important, talented wrestler writhes around in pain in the middle of the ring, complaining of a neck injury and needing a doctor, Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler ignore him in place of showing ANOTHER recap of the events from an hour ago, showcasing the Punk/Cena/Big Show thing, and the impromptu main event made by AJ. After a while, Kofi Kingston and R-Truth come out, claiming that Daniel Bryan is faking, and tell him to leave, saying there’s no place for him here.

Truth then mentions how Little Jimmy is in the ring with them, and Daniel Bryan asks where Little Jimmy is, and begins speaking to him directly. In what was the highlight of tonight’s show by far, he then violently kicks Little Jimmy CLEAR OUT OF THE RING, and R-Truth rushes out to console him, while Daniel Bryan goes on about how dumb the entire concept of Little Jimmy has become. He then goes on a huge tirade about how Little Jimmy doesn’t exist, and points out how stupid Kofi Kingston and R-Truth are, and the orderlies that Daniel Bryan had last week come out to take R-Truth, until AJ interrupts. She starts to say that Daniel Bryan is “mentally unstable”, and has the orderlies escort him out. He then comes face to face with AJ, makes a mean face at her, and leaves. This entire segment was hilarious, and I’m liking the concept of the mentally unstable Daniel Bryan, who is the foil to AJ. Or AJ is his foil. Either way, his character is evolving beyond “Just say YES or NO” all the time, so I’m digging it.

After some Tout nonsense, AW introduces The Primetime Players. They walk out and do their weird little Barking-Dog-Butt-Buddy, while AW’s voice continues to BOOM throughout the arena. I still don’t understand entirely why he, different from any other ringside manager, gets the loudest mic in the world to make ringside comments. Kofi gets dominated by Titus O’Neil for a while, until Kofi manages to get in his stupid BOOM jump thing, but AW provides a distraction by throwing his shoe into the ring at Kofi, which lets Titus land his powerbomb finisher, and win the match.

This whole match is a classic exercise in one half of a respective tag team, both being less than the half their whole as tag team competitors, and generally both being boring to watch the entire time. Kofi Kingston is boring period, and Titus O’Neil only really works with his partner as a lousy/funny heel team. I kept getting distracted during this match because I just didn’t care about it at all. In the immortal words of Jay-Z, on the next one.

We then cut to CM Punk and John Cena bro-ing it out together backstage, where Punk seems to express some terms of respect and agreement between the two of them to have each other’s backs, and the whole thing was just a weird step backward for Punk in my opinion, because John Cena sure as hell doesn’t give a shit about Punk, and his silence and condescending look as Punk walks away says about the same.

Back from the break, Heath Slater is once again in the ring, and we get another recap from last week, (oh god please make it stop, it hurts us, IT HURTS USSSS), where I assumed the whole “WWE Legends feud” thing came to an end, but here we are. Well it seems that now we’re gonna see Heath Slater used to bring back anybody who has been missing for a while, and Randy Orton shows up, having been thankfully missing for a few months now. I can’t stand Randy Orton. He’s boring. His gimmick is non-existent, and he has no imminent charisma to speak of. He’s like somebody took the default create-a-wrestler from a WWE video game, gave him tattoos that they thought were “totally sick bro”, and transported him into real life. The dude’s whole thing is being a “viper”, which I guess is supposed to reflect the “rattlesnake” thing Stone Cold Steve Austin had? I really don’t know actually, all I know is that he bores me to death, and his RKO is an insanely shittier version of the Diamond Cutter.

Oh yeah, he beats Heath Slater. Shocking, I know. Ugh.

Backstage, we see Daniel Bryan speaking to a doctor about his mental health. He goes through a series of questions, that are all yes or no answers. He of course continues to berate the doctor by LOSING HIS MIND at him, and screaming YES over and over. Crazy Daniel Bryan is already pretty goddamned awesome.

Now, tag team stupidness aside, this is a match that has real potential to work really well. Everybody involved is really talented, and Christian has always worked better in a tag team environment to start with.  After all four of these guys come out, taking a really long time to make their entrances, the match finally starts.

The thing about all 4 of these guys is, with the exception of Christian, they tend to work better individually. Their strengths are better accustomed to the one on one back and forth flow of a singles match. A good example was Jericho’s Wrestlemania match with CM Punk, where it was one big chain wrestling fest, or Dolph ‘s matches with Sheamus, where he actually managed to make Sheamus look really good, while still losing the match himself each time. Then you’ve got The Miz, who is in full Post-Crisis mode, and with his newly found Non-Stupid Haircut powers, has re-established himself as an actual contender to be reckoned with. The problem is now with Christian, who I’ve seen referred to constantly by the IWC as the “Little Brother” of wrestling, and i’d be hard pressed to disagree.

Let me explain. Everything Christian does, is basically just an homage or a borrowed move from other, better wrestlers he’s purposely or not comparing himself to. A main example is his spear, which is an obvious nod to Edge, the only problem being that Edge’s spear wasn’t even that good to begin with, and Christian’s spear is even lamer. He’s like the “Little Brother” of wrestling, who is constantly imitating his bigger brothers as inspiration, but never shakes off the trappings of being someone who is, well, imitating. Add to that, that his Killswitch finisher, when he does rarely manage to pull off, looks like crap, and you’ve got a guy who I WANT to like, but just can’t. He should have stopped way back when, because he’s basically stuck in sidekick hell, and should go quietly into that good night already.

All that being said, the match was pretty good, in spite of Christian, because Ziggler and Miz kept controlling him, keeping Jericho out of the match pretty effectively.That is until Christian gets the hot tag to Jericho, who quickly jumps in and makes a huge comeback, gaining momentum, until Christian jumps up and lands an unseen-by-the-Ref eye poke on The Miz, letting Jericho land the Codebreaker on Miz, winning the match. For Christian, who is supposed to be a face, that move wasn’t very… Christian. Eh? Eh? Get it? Right? What’s that? Oh This gun? Yeah I bought it.  Oh I’m just holding it here. Don’t worry about it. I’ll… use it later.  Oh dear sweet lord how I’ll use it later…

Anyhow, all suicidal threats aside, the match was fine. I just would rather see these guys compete in singles matches. Excuse me while I read about how to aim a gun directly into my brain stem for instant death.

Cutting back to Daniel Bryan again, he’s still answering questions from the doctor. Now he’s taking a series of rorschach tests. On the second test, the inkblot is obviously a goat face, and Bryan starts to freak out, and accuse the doctor of being put up to this by Charlie Sheen of all people. Then he starts speaking openly and aloud to Charlie Sheen, as if he is watching him at all times. I’m not looking forward to the inevitable Charlie Sheen/Daniel Bryan feud, but if we get totally insane Daniel Bryan being awesome because of it, I’m all for it forever.

It does really look like a goat’s face though, I mean c’mon!

Back from another commercial break (jesus), we get more Touts about something, I’m not sure because my eyes roll back in my head in boredom every time they do that.

Tyson Kidd is on Raw! Take a shot!

I remember hearing about how Tensai was going to leave the WWE soon, because he’s been extremely shoot unpopular WWE crowds, and frankly, i can’t wait. I’ve never liked him, even back when he was Albert, or A-Train, or whatever the hell you want to call him, he’s shitty no matter what gimmick he has. Plus his constant hissing is by far the most annoying affectation a wrestler could possibly have. His whole gimmick is offensive, (I don’t care if they stated he’s not asian, it’s still confusing and dumb), he’s awful to even look at, and his move set is boring. He doesn’t look good winning, nor does he make anyone else look good losing. Not to mention his constant abuse of his asian sidekick, the whole thing comes off as really offensive towards asians, and wrestling fans in general.

But yeah, he takes down Tyson Kidd and wins. Then after continually attacking him, the Ref reverses the decision, because reasons. Why? I don’t know. Let’s see Tyson Kidd wrestle someone who isn’t literally horrible to watch in the ring.

Back to Daniel Bryan and the doctor, the doc proclaims Daniel Bryan is officially sane. Then the lighting goes red, and Bryan is attacked by Kane, who claims he is Daniel Bryan’s anger managment counselor, in the most un-subtle reference to Charlie Sheen’s show, called  Anger Management.

After the 5th (?) Summerslam promo, which I’ve been neglecting to mention each time they show it in this article, as a kindness to you, because I’m not joking when I say an entire hour of this 3 hour show has been recaps and promos for Summerslam. Anyhow, after all of that yet again, we finally get to the main event.

CM Punk came out to join Jerry Lawler and Michael Cole  at the announcer’s table for the match, and hearing him give Jerry a constant stream of shit for being a really limp dick announcer with lame opinions that always fall into a predictably boring point of view that idolizes faces like Cena and Rock in spite of all logic and reason pointing to them be lackluster in many ways. It’s the same kind of person who promotes a needlessly Mark-ey kind of view regardless of character motivation, or continuity, or story development. Lawler is supposed to be what the worst WWE writers want all of us to be, a mindless, blind Cena lover who is entertained endlessly by Santino dicking around with a sock, or literally anything involving Hornswoggle, who thinks that parlor tricks and stupid skits are the focal point of a wrestling show.

Throughout the match Punk was making excellent commentary, and making solid, legitimate criticisms of Lawler the entire time. I’d really love to see Punk become a full-time announcer, who also wrestles, because he’s miles better than nearly every current commentator they have on any of WWE’s shows.

But anyway, the match itself was ‘old hat’. Lots of motifs we’ve seen from all of Cena and Big Show’s matches in the past. Big Show gets a sleeper put on him. Cena starts his 5 moves of doom, and is countered. Big Show taunts Punk at ringside, Cena gains the upper hand after kicking out miraculously like a robot. Big Show takes a big bump. Cena takes a big bump. The only thing that broke it up was the end, where Show threw Cena into Punk at the announcer’s table. After nearly being counted out, Cena managed to barely jump back into the ring, and pulls out the attitude adjustment, but it’s interrupted by Punk. Then Punk knocks out Big Show with a kick to the head, resulting in the match becoming a DQ, but for whom it’s unclear. Punk then grabs the mic, and says the winner is: Nobody. And that they’re both losers, to loud boo’s from the crowd.

Then AJ comes out says they’re actually both winners, and makes them both #1 Contenders, and makes the title match a triple threat at Summerslam. Punk comes back, and says AJ is a bad GM, calls her crazy, and demands she show him respect. The show ends on him screaming at her for respect, while AJ smiles away gleefully.

Knowing her, it’s probably turning her on.

So there’s the end of the 1001th Raw. Frankly, I’m glad Punk is going back to being a Tweener, because arrogant asshole CM Punk is far superior to any other version of his character. For every awesome Crazy-Daniel-Bryan promo we’ll get, we’re still gonna get terrible things like that Tyson Kidd/Tensai match that I can’t stand watching, or the entire hours of worth of repeated promos for a match between two guys who don’t wrestle full time, or god forbid more inane “Touts” from insipid, mouth breathing fans. This Raw wasn’t the worst in the world, but it wasn’t really that good either. I had a hard time trying to focus on it the entire time, and mostly found it boring, which is a bad sign for the future of Raw.  I can only hope that next week’s show will pick up in entertainment value. That’s really all I ask from WWE any more, and man, they should at least deliver that. I want to be entertained, not reminded about how IMPORTANT this match between TRIPLE H AND BROCK LESNAR is on SUMMERSLAM over and over and over again. If you’re gonna do stupid shit, have more guys kicking invisible children in the face, and less promo/recap filler of things we’ve already seen, especially if they’re from the same show we’re still currently watching.

Man. Here’s some pictures of AJ to cheer you up, because I’m just really bummed now.

There. Now I feel better.

Monday Night Raw Recap & Review 7/23/12 1000th Episode!

In 1993, Raw was an hour-long, and in 1997, it switched to be 2 hours long. Now in 2012, after 1000 episodes, it’s going to be three hours long. Presuming this is a pattern, in 2016, if the world still exists and isn’t blown up or overrun by gas stealing mutants, Raw will be 4 hours long. By 2031, when Cyber-McMahon makes Raw 5 hours long, and we instantly stream it to our Mind-Cloud, it’ll still be 4 and a half hours of weird/ promos and skits, and still only half an hour of wrestling. The promos and skits will be about the Literal Robo-Cena Army invading as the GWE (Galactic Wrestling Entertainment) has Sub-Monday Night Wars with UCW (Universal Championship Wrestling, a new promotion run by Neo-Ted Turner.2), but they’ll still be awful, and The Undertaker will be preserved as a head in jar who guest stars at Uber-Wrestlemania every Post-Solar Cycle.

What I’m saying is, accept this. We’ll be getting new versions Raw for the rest of our lives. WWE is going to change, and you’re not going to like it as you get older. That’s kinda the nature of aging I suppose, but that’s not to say we still can’t enjoy things for what they are. I mean, c’mon, that Undertaker head jar thing sounds pretty cool right? What kind of gimmick match would he compete in? Hell In A Futuristic Polytransdermal Sub-Aquatic Life Preserving Nutrient Rich Bio-Sludge Filled Cell? Bah, enough pondering about my make-believe future WWE, let’s get to tonight’s Raw, which as we’ve been told countless times over the last couple months, is the 1000th, and a milestone that blows all other shows out of the water.

The show opens with Vince McMahon introducing, as promised for months now, the return of Degeneration X, arguably the most popular wrestling stable of all time (Although the NWO would be it’s main contender).

Shawn Michaels and Triple H walk out in their DX fatigues and shirts, glow sticks in tow, and parade around in the ring, and yuck it up for a few minutes about not wearing underwear, but get around to admitting that they alone aren’t just DX. They then invite the rest of the DX stable, and point towards the stage ramp. X-Pac, Road Dogg, and Billy Gunn then come out in an army jeep, and join Shawn and Triple H in the ring. They all start a few rounds of crotch chopping, and go through their series of old famous catch phrases, which Road Dogg was the master of back then. I’ve been watching old episodes of Raw from 13 years ago, and while I used to love Road Dogg’s longwinded speech-phrases, hearing them again, and realizing how repetitive and loooooong they are, I now find it excessive and grating. But here, he thankfully keeps it short and gives up the mic to Triple H, who winds up a very long and kinda rambley version of his “LET’S GET READY TO SUCK IT” thing. After a weird little comedy bit between Billy Gunn, Triple H and Shawn Michaels, they awkwardly fumble through trying to say some catchphrase together.

Suddenly, Damien Sandow’s music plays, and he walks in, denouncing DX as “common degenerates” who compose themselves crudely. He also recognizes that they could all kick his ass, and after pointing out this fact, he says their would be attack of them would make him a martyr. DX decide what to do together in a group huddle, which Sandow calls them rude for doing. They then of course, attack him, and prove Sandow right. I like(d) DX, back when they came off as a ragtag group of rebels who were fighting against authority figures, but this really just kinda makes them come off as a bunch of “cool guy” jocks who are bullying people to get cheers from the on looking crowd.

After that, we come back from a break to Jim Ross making his entrance, to join the announcer’s table for the night.

This was a pretty typical 6-Man Heel Vs Face tag team match. Probably the most interesting thing about it is that it was Jericho’s 360th match on Raw, which is a pretty damn high number any way you think about it. While seeing Rey Mysterio and Sin Cara on the same team makes sense to me, other than the fact that they’re all faces, I don’t understand their team up with Sheamus. Then again, Jericho, Alberto Del Rio and Dolph Ziggler have no reason to be on the same team either, so at least it’s fair while being totally arbitrary. The match went through the paces, building up to a hot tag to Sheamus, where Sheamus and Jericho went at it for a while, until Dolph Ziggler, who as it was established last week, has beef with Jericho, ended up laying a cheap shot on Jericho, letting Sheamus get the brogue kick in, and winning for his team.

While this match was a bit underwhelming, I’m enjoying the slow burn on the Jericho/Ziggler feud, because Heel/Heel feuds can be the great when done right, and when you have two guys who are both as talented on the mic and ring as ZIggler and Jericho, you’ve got as close to a sure thing on your hands as possible. Knowing WWE though, they’ll find some horrific way to screw it up, but I’d like to remain optimistic, simply because they’re both so entertaining to watch. The only wrench in that machine is the fact that Sheamus has the WHC title right now, and as long as Ziggler doesn’t have the title, then the stakes between Jericho and Ziggler won’t be as high as they could be. This whole angle could go one of two ways:

1.) They continue feuding, and they include Sheamus in it. They all argue with each other for a few weeks until a PPV comes up and then they fight in a Triple Threat match for the title, that Sheamus will win because blleeeeeeeaaagghhhhh.

2.) With the rumors of Jericho leaving WWE and retiring for good, and with Ziggler taunting Jericho last week about “having lost it”, and being on a losing streak in general, they turn it into a last dying hurrah sort of thing. Jericho goes full-bore into committing himself to destroy Ziggler, and launches himself into a suicidal match against Ziggler, where the loser leaves WWE forever. Ziggler then pulls a Bane on Jericho’s Batman, and breaks him once and for all (these are Knightfall spoilers, not DKR spoilers so shut up), and Jericho retires from being Batman Y2J forever. Ziggler comes out on top as the new force within Gotham WWE Universe, and makes a long speech about how he is the WWE’s reckoning. Then, as Jericho writhes in pain from the worlds most brutal Zig-Zag, Ziggler gives Jericho his permission to die. (okay, so maybe some of those references were DKR related, but c’mon that movie was awesome!)

But goddamnit we all know it’s gonna be #1. It’d be nice to see this again though.

I’ll never get tired of this .GIF

What is this? Why are you on my wrestling show?

After some Tout nonsense, which I refuse to write about, other than mentioning it here, Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler make a Skype call to effing Charlie Sheen, who very quickly manages to say something subtly racist about Sheamus, and at the same time be really boring. Why he was even there, I don’t understand, but Cole and Lawler make it a point that it won’t be the last time we see him on the show tonight.

Holy crap. The next segment of the show, is literally one of the strangest things I’ve ever seen on wrestling, EVER, and that’s including Mae Young giving birth to a hand. In fact, it’s in direct relation to that, because I couldn’t even write about this segment for a solid 10 minutes after. My mouth was agape the entire time, and I was so surprised I laughed for almost that entire 10 minutes, until my sides hurt and was gasping for air. But here goes: After the weird Charlie Sheen moment, we cut to AJ’s dressing room, where she stands with Layla, both preparing their makeup. Layla asks AJ if she’s sure she wants to go through with this, and implies that she’s still mentally unstable. AJ then makes the most brilliant point ever, and says that EVERYTHING in the WWE is unstable. Batshit crazy things happen here ALL THE TIME. Well, she didn’t say those words exactly, but she did open the door to see Hacksaw Jim Duggan, walking backwards and saying his catchphrase to an unseen friend, all the while holding his 2×4. Then we see Roddy Piper and R-Truth trying to help Little Jimmy jump rope, because apparently people can see him now, including Layla. I’m not sure If I already wrote a piece on how Little Jimmy started out as a brilliant defensive colloquialism to separate and insult those who R-Truth believed were antagonizing him from behind the scenes, while simultaneously illustrate how the WWE Fandom is a collective entity that casts judgement unfairly on deserving talent, by giving them an all a Good’ Ol’ Boy nick name. That may have been looking a bit too into it, but I prefer to see my wrestling gimmicks as high brow as I can, when I can. Now, Little Jimmy is just an invisible child? Maybe? I’m still not sure if he’s a kid or a midget actually. It’s very unclear. Either way, he then “runs away”, and Truth and Piper chase after him.

Hoo boy. Here it comes. Then AJ and Layla see something off camera, that silences them. The camera pans over, and we see a man in a giant hand suit, standing there next to Mae Young. He claims to be Mae Young’s son, now all grown up.

I shit you not. A man, in a giant hand suit, was there. That has got to be the most AMAZINGLY WEIRD and awesome call back of all time, because I was SURE the WWE wanted to forget Mae Young giving birth to that hand as badly as possible. After seeing this bit, as I previously said, I probably tore a muscle from laughing so hard. Say what you will about the WWE, they manage to STILL surprise you no matter what. Jesus god.

This match was so quick, that I’m positive that Funkasaurus’ entrance was once again longer than the actual match. Before the match actually starts, Funkasaurus invites up Dude Love to the ring. Dude Love stands there, and the match begins. Jack Swagger is on a now recognized “losing streak”, and barely even gets a single move in before he gets squashed by Funkasaurus. Then Funkasaurus dances with Dude Love, who puts on a tie-dye Mr. Socko to put the mandible claw on Swagger, because the WWE Universe couldn’t give a shit about Jack Swagger, and punishing him relentlessly for trying to wrestle is now “in”.

After that “match”, we see Trish Stratus backstage with Triple H, who is coaching him on how to do advanced Yoga poses like “bend over slightly”. Then the rest of DX walk in and quickly start making gay jokes because bending over is always gay and yoga is for gay dummies AMIRITE GUYS? Well, then the rest of DX walks away, leaving X-Pac in the room with Trish, who then proceeds to put on the creepiest of creep moves on her, and we cut away pondering what dark fate she’ll succumb to left alone with X-Pac. Hopefully she just slaps away his groping hands and leaves, because we all know X-Pac sucks. We see Daniel Bryan standing in a garage, talking with a bunch of dudes who look like asylum orderlies, you know, the men in the white shirts? It was at this moment that I then began to become worried. What if this whole time Daniel Bryan really DIDN’T love AJ? What if all this was a ruse to get her committed? If so, it’d be one of the most effective Heel moves in history, because even I would have to admit that Daniel Bryan’s character arc with AJ ending in this way would be a  pretty indefensible.

Now, the actual wedding itself. Jerry Lawler introduces the reverend for the wedding, which turns out to be Slick. Who… Ok, I’m just gonna have to man up and admit this guy is before my time, and apparently everybody else’s, because I have no idea who he is, and neither did the crowd. He came out, said some strange things about yardbirds, and Daniel Bryan quickly makes his way into the ring/chapel. Then AJ walks out in her bride’s dress, looking goddamned gorgeous.

I will see her in this dress again one day, and it will be at OUR wedding.

Daniel Bryan then goes on to make some very sweet vows, and when asked to take AJ’s hand in marriage, of course, says yes. When AJ is asked the same thing, she chants yes as well, but then adds an addendum, that she is NOT saying yes to him, but is accepting a proposal from ANOTHER MAN. At that point, Mr. McMahon enters, and says that he isn’t marrying AJ, but that she’s accepted a business proposal. He announces her as the new Raw General Manager, and leaves. AJ then throws her bouquet at Daniel Bryan, and leaves, YES-ing the entire way out of the building.

I have such mixed feelings about this bit, because on one hand, I really felt that Daniel Bryan’s character really had fallen back in love with AJ, and was trying to make things right between them both, as they both moved on together. On the other hand, I was proven right all along about AJ’s endgame. She really WAS playing everyone against each other, to manipulate herself into the coveted GM position of Raw. All along she knew exactly what she was doing, just as I’ve been saying. This could also be the beginnings of a face turn for Daniel Bryan, because you’d be heartless to not feel any sympathy for a dude who was left at the alter, has his heart-broken, and now has a former fiancée as his general manager to deal with. Then CM Punk walks out, and while he says he’s not there to rub this in Daniel Bryan’s face, c’mon, he totally is.This is actually now pretty fitting, considering the ending of tonight’s show, but more on that later. Daniel Bryan then argues with Punk about who is the best in the world, or more accurately, who is the greatest superstar of all time, until The Rock enters the ring, because he’s now considered the greatest of all time. While that’s a sentiment I don’t quite agree with, I don’t disagree with it either. He’s definitely ONE of the greatest of all time, but I have no idea or clue as to how to rank someone as THE greatest. Regardless, Rock comes out to re-iterate how he plans to win the championship come this years Royal Rumble, from whoever is the champion, be it Punk, Daniel Bryan, Big Show, or Cena. Punk says it’ll be him, Bryan says it’ll be him. The Rock leaves, and now we have a championship match to look forward to in… many months. Whoopee.

Bret Hart enters the ring, and says a few words regarding his Intercontinental Championship, sounding as Canadian as possible. I seriously don’t remember him sounding as Canadian as he did here, but I guess years out of the WWE would ruin your Americanized diction. Anyhow, he introduces Christian, the current IC champion, and The Miz. The Miz and Christian made a pretty good pairing against each other, since their move sets complemented each other well. This new Post-Crisis Miz is by far a more serious contender than he ever used to be, and while he hasn’t expressly changed his gimmick, his demeanor gives him the affectation of an actual wrestler who can be taken seriously now, rather than the former-reality-star-turned-wrestler-for-fun thing he had previously. With this new attitude, he weakens Christian’s knee during the match, attacks it systematically, and counters a bunch of Christian’s moves until he lands his Skull Crushing Finale on him, and picks up the win, and the Intercontinental Title.

I couldn’t have been more happy with this outcome, because I love The Miz, I love the Intercontinental Title being a championship that is coveted rather than ignored or looked down on. I like championship matches happening on Raw, and I like titles trading hands on Raw. Everything about this match was stellar, and even if it’s literally an hour and 40 minutes into the episode, and we’ve so far had about 15 actual minutes of wrestling at most, this kind of match is the thing that should be happening on future episodes. It’s awesome. Like The Miz.

Charlie Sheen returns on Skype, and comments on Daniel Bryan’s character, plugs his show, and then criticizes him for how he treats women, which is just so insane coming from him, but whatever. I can’t imagine why they picked Charlie Sheen of all people to be their special guest star, but they did, for reasons I’ll never know or even understand if I did.

After a video package from Regis Philbin about how much he loves the WWE (Weird, I know), we get Triple H returning to the ring, to continue the very boring and stupid Brock Lesnar storyline feud he has with him. Let me explain why I find this feud boring to you. First, they’re both pretty dumb, especially Triple H for reasons I’ve pointed out in this column previously, but also Brock Lesnar for mostly squandering all the myriad amazing chances he’s been handed on a silver platter his whole life. Without going into full detail, the guy has been given every opportunity to do a lot of great things in his life that other people would break their backs and kiss endless amounts of ass to even get a shot at doing, and Brock Lesnar has shamelessly and selfishly shunned the lot of them, because he found them boring. In short, he’s a quitter, so that’s one legitimate gripe Triple H has with Lesnar’s character.

So when Paul Heyman came out in place of Brock Lesnar, I feared the worst, that this would be another 3 WHOLE MONTHS of teasing to advance what should have been a 1 month storyline at best, that could have ended 3 PPV’s ago. The entire thing is a waste of everyone’s time, and even Paul Heyman continually pointing out how stupid Triple H is doesn’t make this segment not boring. Paul even makes a great jab at Triple H about how inept he’s been, and how counterintuitive it is towards his goal of doing things that are good for “This Business”. Paul then passively mentions Triple H’s kids, when making a very solid and salient point about Triple H’s character, which enrages Triple H, and apparently also makes Stephanie McMahon mad as well, because she enters the ring. She goes on with the same rhetoric of You-Don’t-Talk-About-My-Kids-OR ELSE crap that Triple H does, and ignores the whole legal trouble that they’re in with Heyman, and provokes another potential lawsuit by attacking him. It’s like the McMahon family doesn’t understand what due process, assault and battery, or lawsuits even mean. They’re all convinced that Triple H beating Brock Lesnar will somehow fix all of these things. Paul Heyman gets all riled up after he’s slapped by Stephanie, and accepts the challenge on behalf of Triple H. Heyman then mentions Stephanie’s kids again, and she of course, attacks him again, because god that family is dumb. Brock Lesnar’s music comes on, and Triple H and him trade a series of blows, until Triple H knocks Lesnar out of the ring, and Lesnar does the typical Slow Walk Backwards up the ramp thing, that all defeated heels do. This whole thing was a waste of time, because they could have done this months ago, and it may have been less lame, because it didn’t waste so much stupid time over such a stupid subject.

Coming back from a particularly long commercial break, Santino and Hornswoggle (ugh) both walk out, giving out little WWE dolls to the kids in the audience. They then leave or disappear or something, because Heath Slater then enters and steps into the ring, and makes an open challenge to any former WWE Raw legend to a No-DQ, no count out match. Lita’s music comes on, and she walks out, dressed in what looks like a bra and yoga pants to the ring.

She’s actually hotter now than I remember her being.

Slater then incredulously accepts her challenge, and has the bell rung. Lita then says she’s not here alone, and says she’s hired some protection, which of course, means the APA walk out. Slater then attempts to retreat, but is stopped by all of the previous WWE Raw legends, who have now amassed as a group, and force him back into the ring. The APA attacks Slater, and Lita pulls off her Twist of Fate/Moonsault combo on him, to win. The legends all stand around the fallen Slater, and Farooq grabs a mic, standing directly above him. He looks around, and lets out a loud “DAMN”, thus bringing the Heath Slater/Legends feud to an end.

After that, we cut to Daniel Bryan being interviewed backstage, who complains about being insulted by Charlie Sheen. He seems pretty rattled by Charlie Sheen’s words (really?), and says he’d put the YES-Lock on him if he ever saw him. Back to Michael Cole, we see him standing there interviewing the 100,000,000th social media follower, who gets to have a few words about loving the WWE, and afterward, Lawler makes a weird segue into a video package about catchphrases.

So yeah, that sure was a video package of catchphrases! Wokka Wokka! Oh god kill me.

After the video package, we cut to Zack Ryder and John Cena talking about G-TV with Gene Okerlund. The Rock then steps into frame, and he and Cena talk about their potential future match at the Royal Rumble. It certainly seems like that’s the match we’ll be getting come this Royal Rumble, especially in light of the show’s later events, but yet again, more on that later.

So I guess Jinder Mahal, who is now the king of the boring jobbers, walks out with his now jobber posse, and attempts to surround and beat down Kane, because…. Kane… is… a guy? I don’t know exactly. As they surround him, we hear the ominous BONG of the Undertaker’s bell theme song. He appears wearing his Super-Shredder suit, and sloooowly walks his way into the ring. At first it seemed like he was going to fight Kane, but they quickly team up to attack the gaggle of jobbers, who stupidly initiate the fight against them both. After a series of punches, tandem chokeslams, and tandem Tombstones, they pose together, as the Brothers Of Destruction once again. I’m not sure if this was anything other than a cameo for Taker, or a wrap up to the long love/hate relationship between Kane and Undertaker, or even a new beginning. Either way, it was pretty cool.

They just can’t quit each other.

Ugh, once more we’ve got Charlie Sheen returning to speak with Cole and Lawler, and he claims that he’ll actually end up fighting Daniel Bryan, if he ever ends up in LA, effectively challenging Daniel Bryan to a match. Cole then points out that the next time they’ll be in LA is at Summerslam, which means I suppose we’ll see Daniel Bryan get jobbed out to Charlie Sheen, which is the biggest downgrade possible. Hopefully this isn’t the case. Hopefully we’ll see Bryan get his due, or continue his feud with CM Punk, or literally anything else than a stupid celebrity match.

Ignoring how this match is a complete waste of the Money In The Bank contract, and how much that annoys me, I can say this match started off like a typical CM Punk/ John Cena match. Which isn’t bad per se, but it’s a bit formulaic. So Cena tries his 5 moves, Punk finds creative ways to counter them and gain the upper hand. Eventually, Cena counters a counter into the Attitude Adjustment, and accidentally knocks the Ref out of the ring.With the Ref incapacitated, Big Show enters, and WMD’s Cena, knocking him out cold. He leaves, and CM Punk has some internal conflict about whether or not to take advantage of Cena in his knocked out state. He rouses the Ref, and attempts the pin, but Robo-Cena kicks out. Punk attempts the GTS, and Cena counters into the STF, and what with The Rock wanting his match against Cena at this years Royal Rumble, there’s an actual chance Punk could lose. Just as Punk begins to look like he’s gonna tap, Big Show attacks again, ending the match in a DQ. He then continues attacking Cena, while Punk watches from a distance, looking on as if confused as to what to do. The Rock then comes to Cena’s rescue, and beats down Big Show, and attempts the People’s Elbow, but it’s INTERRUPTED by CM Punk, who clotheslines THE SHIT out of The Rock.

Then he taunts Rock by mocking his signature pre-Rock Bottom taunt, and puts The Rock to sleep.

It’s as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.

That’s right, CM Punk has turned heel.

Punk looks towards the camera, grabs his title, and walks away solemnly to increasing amounts of boo’s from the audience. The end. Amazing.

So yeah, a strong finish to an overall entertaining Raw, despite the fact that there was very little actual wrestling in it, just as I predicted. However, the wrestling that was there, was pretty good. I’m mostly excited by Punk’s heel turn, because it’s something I’ve been calling for a while now, as he never truly acted like a real baby face to begin with. In addition to that, the match this Royal Rumble is so clearly going to be Cena VS Rock 2, so this is a way for Punk to lose the championship and the mainstream fans won’t go insane with Cena hatred. I’m also hoping this is the beginning of a face-turn for Daniel Bryan, but the whole Charlie Sheen thing seems to be suggesting that that’s not the case. In a perfect world, Daniel Bryan would have a face turn, and him and Punk would switch roles in their feud, with Punk being the bastard heel, and Daniel Bryan being the former bad guy learning from his mistakes, trying to make things right.

Anyhow, 1000 episodes. Man, where the hell was Stone Cold Steve Austin? Is he just dead? Or does he hate the WWE now? Oh well. See you in 2031, when we get to the 2000th episode, now 5 hours* long!

*still only 20 minutes of actual wrestling

Monday Night Raw Recap & Review 7/2/12


Tonight’s Raw opens with the announcement that Teddy Long will be the GM. Which doesn’t bode well for tonight’s show, but I accepted that it was inevitable. John Cena enters the ring while promos for Money In The Bank are mentioned. Cena then starts talking about the ending of last weeks show, where he got beaten by Jericho and then attacked by Big Show. He goes on to talk again about how that loss has only motivated him to Try Harder™ and to Never Give Up™ and all the usual boring Cena rhetoric that he spouts. Thankfully, he is interrupted by Daniel Bryan, who comes out and reminds us of his MITB match with CM Punk.  CM Punk comes out, and they all make points about the potential outcomes of MITB, with John Cena essentially being the winner as a given, because he’s John Cena. This really hurts the value of that PPV since they’re already talking about Cena as the winner, and undermines the whole point of that match. Why have a match if everyone involved basically admits that John Cena is going to win? What’s the point other than showing us yet again that the scales are tipped in his favor at all times?

Thankfully, the promo got better with CM Punk and Bryan playing off of each other and involving the crowd. If this storyline develops to include Cena, it could potentially make every single fan in the audience go hoarse between “Yes”, “No” and “Let’s go Cena/Cena Sucks” chants. Not one to be out of the spotlight, Jericho then enters, and puts in his 2 cents. He comes out, and reminds us all that between the four of them, Jericho is one of the best catchphrase makers of all time. He then runs through all of his catchphrases that he’s had over the years, and says that he plans to win the match, and not let Cena cruise his way to a title shot. Then Kane and Big Show enter one after another, both to re-enforce the idea that they plan to win the match. They then get into a big brawl, and Show comes out on top, ostensibly as the victor. It’s an attempt to rectify the foregone conclusion that Cena will win, but really, the damage is done. They’re clearly trying to set up the many possible storylines that could develop between Punk/Bryan/Show/Cena/Jericho/Kane, but WWE is anything if predictable, and it’ll probably end up being a Punk/Cena match we’ll get in the future.

This is a strange match up. I don’t quite get the pairings other than the Tag Team champions against the #1 contenders The Primetime Players. They’ve developed all of the feuds in previous shows, specifically Smackdown, but as for the actual reasons they’re booked against each other, I’m drawing a blank. Why are Otunga and Cody Rhodes a team? No clue. Why are Santino and Christian buddies? Does holding a championship title make you instant best friends? It’s not clear, but it’s building for their respective matches at MITB.  8 man tag-team matches are never something I’ve been too big a fan of. Most of the time it’s unbalanced, and everyone involved is just used sparingly until the lot of them find some way to get hurt and then the good/bad guys win.

I had a hard time paying attention to the match because A, It was kinda boring, and B, AW’s voice was incredibly, ridiculously loud. I don’t know if he had a direct mic hooked up, but the dude was louder than Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler and the audience combined. The guys voice boomed like he was Odin, and was announcing Ragnarok to all the peoples of Earth. Or maybe he temporarily siphoned the powers of Blackbolt, and his whispers don’t move mountains but his words can be heard clearly no matter where you are in the world. Ok, so maybe I’m exaggerating, but the dude was crazy loud.  Eventually, AW leads the Primetime Players away, because them leaving matches seems to be their thing now. Then Cody Rhodes exits too,  leaving David Otunga alone with the rest of the other team. Brodus Clay then enters, and throws Otunga back into the ring to be Cobra’d by Santino. After Santino wins the match, they all take turns needlessly beating on Otunga. After ruthlessly destroying him, they all start dancing to Funkasaurus’ music, as little kids enter the ring. Meanwhile, Otunga writhes in agony. Funk is on a roll!

We then cut to Teddy Long dancing alone inside his dressing room, watching the match, which is exactly what I always thought he did, and it was hilarious to see my suspicions confirmed. Alberto Del Rio walks in, and begs for a title match, destiny, et all. Teddy informs him that the Board of Directors have made him the #1 contender, and given him a match at MITB, but that Teddy has given Del Rio a match tonight, and it’ll be a Teddy Long surprise, which I hope to god isn’t a sexual euphemism. Knowing Teddy Long, the Teddy Surprise is the same damn thing he always does, and is just a tag team match. Man, I really want Vickie back as GM, at least she was creative.

I remember watching this training montage between Vince McMahon and Shane. It was a fairly funny parody of Rocky and all the boxing movie/training montages you’ve ever seen. I loved seeing Vince becoming motivated to bulk up by his pure hatred of Stone Cold alone. I know a thing or two about hating things, and it’s inspiring to think that if you just hate someone or something enough, you can accomplish your goals, no matter how ridiculous, improbable, and pointless. Vince McMahon was a probably the best villainous character in the history of WWE, and boy, I sure do miss him. On a side note, Stephanie McMahon has aged REALLY well. She looks 10x hotter than I remember her being in the Attitude era. Lordy.

Teddy’s surprise turns out to not be a tag team match, but actually Del Rio matched up against Sin Cara. I’m actually surprised these guys haven’t wrestled before, because they’re both of luchador backgrounds. Del Rio actually makes quick work of Sin Cara, interrupting his ostentatious and stupid intro sequence, and then puts him in a cross armbreaker, ending the match before it starts. I like Alberto Del Rio crushing people. I like him winning cleanly, and I like him straight up being BETTER than other wrestlers who are forced on us. His talent is relatively underutilized, and dammit, he needs to have more promos, and we need to see more Ricardo Rodriguez actually wrestling. #Rudo forever.

After that match, we cut backstage to AJ and Daniel Bryan, who shows up with a rose in hand, trying to apologize to her for how he treated her in the past, saying he always cared about her. She calls him on his BS, says she sees through his transparent attempt to curry her favor for his match at MITB, and then bites off the head of the rose he gave her. No really, she bites off the head of the rose. Every week I keep wondering how they’re going to build on AJ’s “crazy chick” character angle, and every week she keeps doing something to up the ante, or at the very least, continue it in a believable fashion. What’s next? Does she start tearing up turnbuckles and eating chunks of the foam inside? Whatever they do, i’m enjoying it. Her character is fascinating right now, and she’s bringing a sliver of hope and legitimacy to the Diva’s division. Hopefully her becoming popular will continue this, and make it a trend. I know I want to see more scantily clad, attractive women actually wrestling competently, don’t you?

Then we return to the old recap of the HHH/Paul Heyman/Brock Lesnar storyline, where we see HHH fail over and over at mind games or understanding basic assault charges. Tonight we were told we’d get a response to HHH’s proposition of a match to settle things at Summerslam. Paul Heyman shows up VIA satellite, and tells us that the decision will actually be made, face to face, at the 1000th episode of Raw. He continues to sum up his impressions of HHH’s intentions for the match between Lesnar and HHH. He basically says that this match will provide a reason for HHH to throw in the towel and become a CEO/COO/Whatever full-time, and cap off his career as being the “last of his kind”, or the “end of an era”, as he’s put it before. I think Heyman is mostly right, but I also think HHH is just kind of dumb, and doesn’t think things through in terms other than “I’m gonna beat you up and then that’ll be that”. Which I guess makes sense, since as a wrestler turned corporate executive, that’s about the only logic he’d apply to any transgression or disagreement he’d ever have, professional or otherwise. I’m guessing if a plumber overcharges HHH for 3 hours work, HHH pedigrees him into his bathroom tile and demands a price reduction, or sliding scale  payment plan. If his cook makes him undercooked pasta, he scalds him with the boiling pasta water and demands perfectly al dente ravioli. HHH is that guy who went to the club and thought it was cool to give the bouncers shit, tried to fight them, and was confused when he wasn’t let back in next week.

I can’t think of the last time I saw an inter-gender Tag Team match, but holy crap how much does Raw reek of Teddy Long as GM so far? One hour in, and the only two real matches (ADR vs Sin Cara doesn’t count) are both Tag Team matches. Dude, seriously? We get it. You love tag teams. Please bring back John Laurinaitis, WWE Board of Directors, I’m begging you. We’ve seen Dolph Ziggler vs Sheamus a few times now, and these guys are definitely learning to make each others moves look pretty good. They work together well,  Sheamus’ moves look good on Ziggler, and Ziggler is pretty great at getting tweener heat from audiences. Eventually Dolph dodges a brogue kick and tags in Vickie.  AJ quickly pins her, then grabs a mic and  YES YES YES’s her way out of the ring. She’s then seen backstage looking for CM Punk, and catches him on the phone. After Punk doesn’t answer her immediately about who he’s talking to, she starts to go Overly-Possesive Girlfriend on him again, asking if he saw her match. He rebuffs her saying he was on the phone the whole time with his sister, and she starts to LOSE IT, and somehow manages to be crazy, creepy, and pitiful at the same time. Punk just shrugs and stands there, I laugh well through the entire commercial break, and the beat goes on.

Back from the break, Heath Slater is back, about to be jobbed to some former WWE Legend. They show a quick recap of all his previous losses, with bonus Three Stooges noises for every injury he took. He protests it, and starts saying how he’s not a clown. Yeah you guessed it,  Doink The Clown then enters the ring, looking just as terrifying as I remember.  Actually, he’s sort of dressed like a creepy clown version of Benjamin Franklin, and that thought alone will make my dreams really scary for a week at least. So they trade moves back and forth for a while, until shocker of shockers, Slater beats Doink! Then we’re treated to a really great surprise, and Diamond Dallas Frickin’ Page shows up, to the cheers of the crowd and me at home. He then drops a Diamond Cutter on Slater, and everyone loses their damn minds.  I miss DDP, he should come back and put the Diamond Cutter on some chump every week, until he gets to Randy Orton. Then we’d get 10 minutes of them just countering each others identical finishers until one of them decides to give up. They’d be the unstoppable force and immovable object of wrestlers whose finishers come “out of NOWHERE”.

So let’s forget that these two were tag team champions and best friends as recently as a year ago, and focus on the particulars of this match. It’s a No-DQ match between them, essentially to build up the tension for their match at MITB. The both of them are considered “Monsters” now, and the both of them are relatively big men, whose main thing is being strong and feared. So their match is just an exercise in big slow dudes moving slowly and attempting moves that seem a bit too much for both of them. Big Show does a good job of making short work of Kane, further establishing him as a dominant force in the WWE. The match itself wasn’t great, but it wasn’t bad either. Aside from the use of a chair though, I don’t get why it was No-DQ. I guess they needed to sell the idea that Kane was only barely beaten by Big Show, but to be honest, it didn’t do Kane any kind of favor with his portrayal as an effective wrestler. Unless he has someone quick to complement his move set, he seems really slow and relatively weak.

Then we cut to Teddy Long and Eve, who I had forgotten about entirely, but good lord does she look great in red, white and blue. Even though Eve is pretty, she’s still better as a backstage character than wrestler. Her character is one of the WWE female staples, that being: The Bitch. I’m not sure what her absence in the WWE was for, kayfabe or otherwise, but her return post-Laurinaitis is a bit superfluous. Is she still in a position of power? It’s something I’ll just have to guess at in continuing weeks. I’m guessing right now, her purpose is for us to just remember her, which seems apt, as that’s all Teddy seems to think, as he slaps a name tag on her. That’s his idea of a revenge for being made to wear a name tag and maids dress by the way.

Like dude, if you’re the GM, and somebody ridiculed you for weeks on end, FIRE THEM. But I digress, as we see Eve approach AJ. Eve makes fun of AJ, calling her a little girl and all those typical insults an older, jealous woman makes of a younger, hotter, more talented woman than themselves. AJ then goes 2-0 tonight, and calls Eve on all of her BS, and rightly accuses Eve of being a brown noser with nobody to brown nose, and no attention to gain from anyone. AJ then says she’ll show her and everyone else,  just how to get attention. I’m presuming she means she’ll win another match, or challenge Eve to a fight, but maybe it’ll mean she’ll actually wrestle women of equal wrestling ability and create a viable women’s division? Either that or she’ll look directly into the camera and profess her love for me. Both would blow my mind equally at this point.

So every time I see Tyson Kidd on Raw, I make a game with myself, where I take a shot. Of course, this has never happened until last week, and usually my shot of alcohol gets all full of lint,  excess cat hair and dead bugs from sitting so damn long. But this last month I’ve taken that shot, and tonight will be the second time. I also have a secondary rule, where if I see Tyson Kidd win a match, I finish the bottle of booze right then and there. The third rule I have, is if Tyson Kidd wins that match in under a minute, I drink all of the booze in the house. So tonight, after seeing Kidd defeat Tensai in under a minute, I drank every last drop of Jameson, Jager and Vodka I had. Strangely, it hasn’t kicked in yet ohwaitthereitgoes ohsfsnj dk lorfd tenzai ish fat urnd gonba habe wressle AJ I LOVE YOIIII ohhbbbb

Ahem.

Backstage, we see Jericho preparing for his match, and Daniel Bryan walks in wearing his jacket. They then argue about whose jacket is better (no really), and then decide that they must embarrass John Cena tonight. Daniel Bryan agrees with his catchphrase, which Jericho detests. Bryan continues Yes-ing, while Jericho continues his catchphrase, “Never EEEEEVER a-gain”,  in a catchphrase-off that I can only describe as being as funny as it is weird. I know in reality they both stop the camera cuts away, but man how great would it be if they only communicated to each other in catch phrases? Just have the both of them come out and represent the apotheosis of wrestling heels, who say their catchphrase, destroy people, and then leave. Jericho already did the opposite of this when he returned, and didn’t say a damn word for 3 weeks straight, gaining heat off of everybody who wanted him to come back face. Daniel Bryan has pretty much built up his whole heel turn around his catchphrase, and already pretty much communicates solely in catchphrases, so why not try it out for a month? Make them a tag team called The Catchphrase Kings, and I’ll love you forever WWE. Returning from the break, Tyson Kidd gets attacked by Tensai in the locker room, because Tensai is a big fat whiny loser baby man. Then, we finally get to the main event of the night.

So yeah, our main event is, surprise, a tag team match. Teddy Long, you are the worst. Seriously.

The name tag is a photoshop, but it’s what you deserved Teddy.

Along with nearly every single match tonight being a tag team match, this Raw suffers from pre-PPV syndrome hard. Sometimes a PPV is the culmination of storylines and matches that occur naturally, and provide either an endpoint or a bullet point in a feud between wrestlers, but sometimes the case is like tonight, where the story and its booking are all there to serve the PPV, rather than the PPV  serve the story and the booking. I had a hard time thinking why everyone was wrestling tonight, other than “Well, they will be at the PPV”. Not that I mind seeing Jericho, Bryan and Punk in a match together, but the reason for them being in a match with Cena is tenuous at best, and it only serves to undermine the previous feud that Punk and Cena had last year, as we saw them earlier just throw away all their history literally in a handshake. You could argue that it’s a noble thing to do between two faces, but it’s boring for me, and doesn’t adhere to Punk’s devil-may-care attitude, and comes off as fake to me, in a really wrong way.

All that being said, when you have so much good talent in the ring, it’s hard to have a boring match. Jericho and Daniel Bryan actually make a surprisingly good team, and do a great job of isolating Cena from his partner. But tonight, Robo-Cena is in full effect, and despite Jericho and Bryan really hitting him hard, he continues to kick out, and slowly build momentum, until he gets the tag to Punk. Punk jumps in and turns the momentum of the match,  and Jericho and Cena battle outside the ring,  disappearing up stage. Bryan gets a huge kick on Punk, and it looks like he was about to win cleanly for the second week in a row against Punk, until Punk counters and gets a huge superplex off the top rope. AJ then shows up, (duh), and Bryan starts to get a lead on Punk. AJ then paces around the ring, looking for something under the ring, until she pulls out a table. She carefully sets it up, and spends a long amount of time considering the table, slowly climbing the to the top of the turn buckle. It looks like she’s about to jump onto the table, although I’m clueless as to why, when suddenly Daniel Bryan jumps out of the ring, and pleads with her to not jump. CM Punk then comes up, to also convince her to not jump, and she kisses Punk. He stands there confused for a moment, and she shoves him into Daniel Bryan, and they both crash through the table. AJ starts Yes-ing, and we end on a shot of Bryan and Punk writhing in mutual confusion and agony.

It seems AJ has picked CM Punk as her object of affection, but is quick to jump to anger if ignored. Pushing Punk through that table is her way of putting you in the dog house, so to speak. The real thing to ponder is, why they both acted as if her jumping 4 feet onto a folding table was tantamount to a suicide attempt. Guys, she’s a trained wrestler remember? If she wants to jump through a table, let her jump. I’m sure she knows how to take a bump. The better ending would have been she jumps through the table, goes all Mick Foley and starts rolling around in the smashed bits of table, smiling in pleasure/pain, and we end as both Punk and Bryan stare in horror.

Also, what the hell happened to Cena and Jericho? Are they still fighting backstage? Do they just get out of camera shot and then go hit the showers and play grab ass? Maybe they’re secretly working together and the second they get backstage they high-five and go bro it out in the green room, eating chips and making fun of Kane. Or just maybe, they’re still  back there, fighting each other during every moment they’re not on camera, and they’re waiting for AW to summon Odin with his God-Voice, and they shall be the Valkyries that bring about Ragnarok. That’d be better than the non-ending we got on Raw tonight. Even my Mom was asking if that was it, and she usually doesn’t even pay even half-attention to Raw at all.

So let me point some things out to you. If the WWE Universe ever gets to pick who the new GM of Raw and Smackdown is, for the love of god, please don’t pick Teddy. On a 2 hour show that had 7 matches, four of them were singles matches that ended in quick squashes in under 2 minutes, and everything else was long, boring tag team matches, with a main event that didn’t even have a real ending. The dude is TERRIBLE at his job, and literally anyone else is better than him. So please, don’t support Teddy. He is a bad GM.  Vote for Vickie, she may be annoying, but she can at least book an entertaining show.

Stick to what you know Teddy. RIP People Power.

An In-Depth Breakdown of ‘Lesnar vs. Overeem’

On December 30th, the UFC is putting on UFC 141, whose main event will feature a heavyweight collision between Brock Lesnar and Alistair Overeem! I felt it necessary to throw my two cents into the penny fountain that everybody else has thrown their two cents into, and give you my breakdown of this fight and my prediction for it.

Brock Lesnar is coming off over a year off from fighting, and during which he had to overcome his second serious bout with Diverticulitis. Last October, we saw Cain Valasquez pick Brock Lesnar apart in the first round with his striking, until a final TKO victory for Valasquez, stealing the title from Lesnar. I will not say that striking is Lesnar’s issue, after all who can forget the incredible right hand that sent Heath Herring in a backward cart-wheel across the cage, breaking his Orbital bone. I will say that Lesnar’s issue, is striking defense. Brock hasn’t quite found out how to get hit, and keep moving forward. This fault may present a huge problem when fighting Alistair, who will undoubtedly be the best striker that Lesnar has fought thus far in his career.

Overeem comes into this fight making his UFC debut, and there is a big question mark over how well he is going to be able to stop Brock Lesnar’s takedowns. Brock has made quite a name for himself with his explosive takedowns, over powering of opponents, and destructive ground and pound.

Continue reading An In-Depth Breakdown of ‘Lesnar vs. Overeem’