All posts by Ryan

About Ryan

I am a pretty small cog in the wrestling machine. I work locally here in Pittsburgh as a commentator. I have done a tour of Japan as an announcer and manager. I am the biggest mark of the group, and I openly admit it. Oh, and my dad is Harley Race.

RAW is never getting laid. Like… EVER!

I feel like we all got to see a picture of my from 7th grade in lieu of RAW last night. So much comedy material. Where do you begin. It’s like all the jabs and insults just bottleneck up and you just sit there silently. The hair? The glasses? The stupid smile, just telling you that it will be years before he ever touches a boob? It is just all too much.

It was the start of the RAW season. Is that really that big a deal on a show that doesn’t take weeks off or show reruns? Chikara runs as seasons as well, but they take breaks and have stories resolve within said season. At the start of this season, we are in the middle of all of the storylines. That makes you look like a poorly run TV show, not a more legitimate one. I get that someone in marketing realized they could use that as a meaningless buzzword (Corinthian Leather! Free Range!), but it has no gravitas within context of this show.

Chris Jericho and Bray Wyatt are settling their feud tonight in a steel cage, after building to this match by not having them work each other in a few weeks. I think they were in a 5 on 5 on Smackdown? Anyway, they had a cage match so that they could set up the end of the show (or so it felt). Jericho did a snazzy house show dive off the top of the cage. Well, as house show as it can be form 20 feet up. The finish made fuck all for sense. If you are going to snake the win out from under Jericho, then have him get duped, not just be too dumb to roll and fall to the ground. So Jericho has a bad knee and gets tooken (pronounced Took-hen) out by Orton because Randy wanted to. I am fine with using Jericho’s departure to give someone some steam, but I don’t get why it was Orton. It felt very forced.

Appropriate for Randy.

Look, the Miz doesn’t draw. You can add every bell or whistle you want to a 2×4, but a the end of the day all you have is a well-adorned piece of wood. I have stated he could be there many times… but he is not. This is a better use of Sandow than it is of Miz, and that is saying something. Ziggler can’t get him over. Sandow can’t get him over. Clearly staged pictures can’t get him over. To me, the bigger issue is that Miz never gets over on his opponents, he just escapes. IT doesn’t make him a threat at all, it makes him a geek.

Paige and AJ were tagging against it doesn’t matter, which is sad because Nattie should matter. This was all about the title hunter and the title holder tagging and anTAGonizing each other. HAHAHA! See what I did there? Stuck the landing! Anyway, they are still doing that “tension that makes you think they are going to bone” angle, so that gives Punk a reason to tune in.

Cena, the #1 face of the company, told Paul Heyman, a non-wrestling mouthpiece, that he will beat the shit out of him if the champ isn’t here next week (Did it again! Two for two!) He also said he loves being him and he won’t change just to have a title. Decent face promo (and the plot of The Dark Knight,) followed by a curiously heelish promo. Bullying an out of shape, 60 year old man who isn’t a wrestler isn’t very face. I am sure Noah loved it.

That NXT match was great for what it was: an elevator speech about why you should watch NXT. Adrian Neville is an impressive little ball of motion. He is what the WWE wants Matt Cross to be. Sami Zayne is amazing in how he puts together what he does. Kidd has been underutilized for so long; it is good to see him finally get to be a bigger fish, even if it is in a smaller pond. With some time, Tyler Breeze could be a top heel. I think he already does the gimmick better than Miz.

Oh, I forgot. Cesaro got to have a match without being in a match. He watched Sheamus and Rollins have a match and fuck is it hard for me to remember his as Rollins. I want to call him Tyler Black. But anyway, the idea is that Cesaro distracts Sheamus, then gets in and beats on Sheamus and then will have a match with Sheamus. Sheamus hasn’t learned to not get distracted by other people and pays the price this week.

Side note: Everyone in Pittsburgh popped for this –

Fella!
Taken from Grantland

Man, if Jerry Springer can’t calm down feuding fashion model sisters, what hope is there for humanity? The Bellas are still terrible actresses and probably people. They have a brother? Anyway, they tackle Jerry and the brother takes a slap and Stephanie and Jerry get caught smiling and laughing while he is on the mat hurt. They built the shit out of this and who cares about it? Did that put a single ass in a seat or in front of a TV? Besides Dan Bryan, I mean.

The Dust Brothers are great. No two ways around it. I hope they get the straps. I also hope they build another team so they can have someone to work.

Also, I am guessing that the Bunny is building to a big reveal. Any guesses? I hope not Zack Ryder, as I have never seen him do a super kick or splash. I would love for it to be Punk, but he ain’t coming back. I think the WWE has all his stuff on clearance at the moment. It needs to be someone established; an NXT guy would just kill it.

We end with Orton and Reigns having a match that involved Orton being a master of reversals and counters, a multi person run in, weapons, a rushed steel cage, about 5 reversals of fortune and no one remembering that the steel cage had a door until it was convenient. You need to get Reigns in with someone who has some personality so he can learn how to work with a crowd. He won’t get that from Orton.

Maybe the bunny?

-Ryan

RAW is making an omelette by busting up some eggs.

I feel like not starting with the glaring point would be like reviewing the execution of Eddard Stark by talking about the scrapes on his knees. You peg your story on the lede, right?

So they end RAW with Stephanie confronting the fired Bella. It was an ok bait and switch. I twas acted well by Stepha, and Flatty Bella tried to act as best as she could, but it came off formulaic: Emphasize the last work that you say to Steph. Bonus points if it is “bitch.” And yes, I thought Steph did a good job of selling the “spoiled rich girl throwing a fit.” It made the “twist” decent. But… and there is always a “but,” isn’t there? The “but is: THIS is the angle you are finishing with? This is the one that gets the weight? I don’t care about this at all. Not even a little bit. There might be some redemption in having Dan Bryan Come back as a result of it, but honestly there feels like there could be a hundred better ways to do that. Your main event of RAW was to push a match between two women that haven’t wrestled in a really long time (couple months and over a decade) and were not known as good wrestlers to begin with.

WE opened with Paul Heyman and Cena. I don’t know that there is a more important man in the WWE today than Heyman. He gets to shine. He can talk circles around anyone else there. Cena comes out alone and gets booed. He says he knows he has an ass-kicking coming. Then Heyman came out and mad ethe match so important that Brock didn’t even need to be there. You don’t need to feed Lesner jobbers (and burn through his contracted dates) as long as Heyman is there for him. Then out comes Cesaro. Heyman rightfully looked confused as to why he was there and then slowly sound the realization as Cesaro referred to Paul as his “friend” and went out to wrestle Cena.

Cena said he was going to wrestle circles around him. He didn’t. He kept up, but Cesaro is a way better wrestler than Cena is, even with Cena actually wrestling. There were some good false finishes, but when you don’t believe that the WWE will let Cena lose on RAW to Cesaro in a curtain-jerker, it kind of kills the believability of said false finishes. It took a “super” AA to finish Cesaro, so that says something. But the win here makes you believe that Lesner walks out with he gold.

AJ still flips out over the word Crazy. Paige got under her skin. Matches work better than promos in this case.

Wow, the WWE really makes me not care about Chris Jericho anymore. He comes out to do old, hack jokes against Steph because he wants another match? Really? That earns him a match against Seth Rollins, who is still with the authority and hits Jericho from behind. Jericho has just come off weak this run.

It feels like they care about Dolph Ziggler again. It feels like they are trying to get him over with the Tag Champs. It feels like they are tryignto do the right thing… but it feels sorta like a failure. I don’t feel like the Tag Champs are over enough to rehap Ziggler. The wins are helping, but a few more single wins would be better than some 6 man wins. Also, the flash at the end of the backstage made it feel like the pseudo-Oppression were the point of the match… not any of the people actually in the match.

The plus side is that if your could actually control Ryback, then Rybaxel could be a decent team that you could push. Big if.

I love the Bo Dallas gimmick. I realize that it doesn’t have legs and funny don’t make money, but I have really enjoyed it. Isn’t that all that matters? His streak was broken by a jobber, so I am guessing they will feud now. Good way to get him some shine without just having him expected to win each match because of said “streak.” What they really need to do is bring back Konnan and reform the 3 Live Crew. Yep, I just advocated for a TNA gimmick. BO-lieve that!

Jack Swagger and Rusev just make me want that match to happen. Coulter has worked well as a mouthpiece. I am glad to see the WWE go back to the Manager system. I have missed it. I want to see the rematch. I think these two work very well together.

Conversely, Rose and Sandow are how you make me not care about a match. They are both the goofball in the pairing and it doesn’t work. I think Sandow could be a great comedy worker… but not in this feud. Let him be more than finisher target and I bet he blossoms. Lord knows you need a new Santino.

Orton beat the shit out of Reigns. Hate to say it, but good. You had been making him out to be Superman for a month now. Time to show he can be hurt, even if it is in a 2 on 1 attack. Also, Orton and Kane seemed to work together tonight. Fine, but don’t have them snipping at each other backstage next week. Kane burned the roast again and the only place Randy takes him is FOR GRANTED!!

Women. You would thing we would all learn how dangerous they all are. And yet, Fandango won’t. He keeps getting fooled. No one in the WWE has any sense of concentration or trickery. I could make a KILLING there. He jobs to one of Los Matadores.

Total Divas match. Fuck that match. Fuck that show. You need to be a much better wrestler to use that submission on a regular basis. You can’t stumble into it. It needs to be crisp.

I don’t know if I am jaded or just old. Jericho’s match was fine, but it didn’t grab me. There was nothing wrong with it that I can put my finger on. But still… it just didn’t grab me. Something is missing. What Noah calls “it.” Finish was Jericho catching Rolling in a codebreaker as he jumped into the move and the lights went out and Bray Wyatt chumped the fuck out of Jericho. Jericho doesn’t seem like a threat. He eeked out a win and then Wyatt has dominated him. IF Wyatt doesn’t go over at Summerslam, it just won’t feel right. Know what I mean?

Then the end.

At least I got to see Fit Finlay and I am glad Jamie Noble still has a job.

-Ryan

Like a vampire, TNA has been Spiked.

That headline? NAILED IT!!

TNA has lost it’s TV deal. Despite the terrible product that they produced on a daily basis,i am still shocked. Like the person in an abusive relationship, you just get used to them taking the crap from the significant other because of all the time they had invested and how genuinely sweet they could be when you weren’t around and SURE, there is some bad but you have to look at the good points. But Spike had enough and TMZ found out. I have to be honest, I don’t see who would want to pick up TNA. They hit in the 1 range as far as Neilsen ratings go. How small would you have to be to have that be a marked improvement. RAW made Spike. Literally. They attention they got from that 1 show was enough for them to rebrand from TNN (The Nashville Network, a former country music-themed station) to Spike, the station of manliness with man things. You know, like dudes rolling around in Spandex.

To me, the sad part is this kills any competition for WWE. It could be argued that they never were competition for the WWE, but at least semantically they were. They operated in the same realms. I find it hard to believe that Spike is walking away from pro wrestling all together. I could see Jeff Jarrett coming in and pitching them Global. He is savvy and while his initial business plan did not involve Spike, i think he would take the offer if it was presented. In turn, he can give them a product they are accustomed to without all of the “problems” that arose since Panda got involved. As Bill Mitchell pointed out to me, Spike has invested close to a billion dollars into Bellator. They are clearly looking to promote MMA and may have walked away from Pro Wrestling. My thought is they will need a strong lead in to promote a brand that isn’t UFC and that ties in a lot better than COPS reruns (sorry, Noah.) Jarrett could deliver a paired down Impact with reasonable cost on the talent and a base of operations so touring wouldnt eat into the costs.

If he doesn’t then i look to Jarrett, who clearly still has contacts in TNA, to scoop up the more indy talent and let Angle go to the Fed. Initially, I had thought his big play would have been to get Angle when his contract expires. Why get the King when you can get all the pawns and a few rooks and bishops for the same cost? Angle is looking for a retirement payday, so unless the fed drastically low ball shim, I can’t see him looking to join Global. The only other people i could see going to the Fed and Bully Ray (slim chance, but possibly as a long term goal as an agent) and Samoa Joe. Chances are again slim as Hunter is the gatekeeper to the kingdom and he works that velvet rope in a “no Fatties” T-Shirt. Sorry, Kevin Steen.

Rumors swirl that this is all around the fact that Vince Russo was secretly on the payroll and Spike didn’t like him. Had they had better ratings, this wouldn’t be an issue. Results are the best defense. I am wondering if Russo was doing more than punching up commentator scripts. The booking seems to say so. Regardless of what caused it, they opted not to renew their highest rated original programming. SOMETHING had to influence that decision.

What i find funny is Dixie tweeting that “negotiations are ongoing.” I get that you have to save face but lying isn’t going to cut it. Had Spike came out and denied the rumor, it would have had some weight. But their silence makes Dixie’s denial just sound… pathetic.

Yes, there are things that could happen. This isn’t the death knell yet. They could find another channel or go alternate media routes (aka internet.) but I can’t say it looks good for them.

-Ryan

RAW serves you a hotdog now to give you steak later?

I feel l like you HAVE to address the PPV in order to discuss RAW, so… It was bad. But it wasn’t bad for the effort of the people in it. They tried. Oh my god did they try. They tried all the time… for this revolution. And yes, this is the PPV before one of the big ones, so you can’t do anything that gets too close to a payoff. However, the Wyatt job felt unconvincing. They have a good match that was killed by the finish. The Usos/Wyatts were the same way, but in that case there were too many false finishes. It felt like they burned through a lot of very good a believable finishes for a title defense that didn’t feel like it was going to stick as a status quo. They just cancelled the Ambrose/Rollins match, which is never the idea you want to project. And Cena won again, which is what should have happened but felt less that satisfying considering all the action in that match.

Thus, all that overbooking led us itno RAW tonight. A RAW without Rollins. A RAW without Cena. A RAW without Cena while they are bringing up his next program with Bork Lazer.

We opened with HHH not announcing his new opposition to John Cena. Of course everyone showed up to say why they should be the next one on one opponent. The heels are arguing, which feel s like Kane is packing up and saying good bye. No evidence to support that, just … it feels weird. Maybe Kane has gone beyond being a true heel at this point? Anyway, this prompts a lot of talking and a handicapped match. Randy Orton walked on Kane and Roman Reigns wins with a continuing strong push.

Nikki Bella got stomped down by 3 divas. Her sister was a t ringside, so Stephanie slapped her. No one here can actually wrestle, so I was actually ok with this match. They did what they know how to do. It was dull and quick, which is a lot better than dull and protracted.

Bo and Sandow were good as a pseudo-comedy match. I mean, it wasn’t pratfalls or Lancashire wackiness, but it wasn’t a serious tet-a-tet. Sandow was Lebron and Bo was… Bo. Sandow took too long on the elbow drop and Bo won. I would let them do a short program and give them the warm up at SummerSlam. I think they can work well together.

Bray Wyatt decided to not let the Highlight reel happen. I was fine with this decision; Jericho’s weakest traits are his interviewing skills and his understanding of how to work in that situation. The Wyatts beat on Jericho until blood was running down his ear. Odd choice for a company who pulls back anytime they have real blood in the ring. Was this to make up for the shitty loss last night?

Also, it speaks volumes that Bray can keep losing on the big stage and maintain his level of heat. They keep on jobbing him and he still comes off as a viable threat with his gimmick.

The Miz was clever at the Battle Royal. He kept doing the Vince “hide outside” gimmick and then snuck in and won. So OGF COURSE you have him job the very next night after winning the strap. I am not going to try and say Miz should be at the top. Nope. WWE already did. They gave him the belt and had him headline Mania. With all of the good will you have invested into Miz, you are squandering it by doing what you did on Monday. You didn’t make him credible by giving him the belt. You didn’t elevate Ziggler by having him win the night after Miz got the title. You just wasted what you spent. On the plus side, Ziggler gets a win on TV!

Speaking of wins on TV, big ups to Zak Ryder! Getting an entrance AND a win! Anyone else equate this to the gold watch & hearty handshake before being future endeavored?

AJ and Paige are enemies again. They can work. Tell AJ to not be so mean girl as a face.

OH MY GOD, YOU GUYS! FLORIDA was on! Singing songs! Dancing! Woman! I would so rather have this that wrestling, amirite? Oh, then Stephanie got arrested for slapping that Bella and HHH is a dick. Not sure what that accomplishes, plot-wise, but there you have it.

Rybaxel pick up a win so that Xavier Woods can come out and complain about how the black man is being held down. It’s almost like he didn’t realize he was in pro wrestling. I get it, you are smart. But this angle has been done. A lot. Kingdom just started this angle like a month ago… and did it better. This whole show has felt like it was less about the matches and more about the talking before or after. Like with Cesaro: Clumsy dismount. “Hey, I am not a Paul Heyman guy anymore!” Show, don’t tell. I am fine with Cesaro joining the Authority, but this change of attitude is as out of left field as it could possibly be. Anyway, he goes out and beats on Ambrose and gets a win via DQed to show his loyalty to the group that hasn’t accepted him yet. Way to take that chair to the arm!

Oh, and Brock is in. Heyman made it awesome as always. His promos have a weight to them that others don’t. What he says feels important. So I am hoping that the payoffs that the WWE swerved us all on with Battleground get settled at SummerSlam.

So worth $10.

– Ryan

RAW: Stompy stomp stomp!

Boy the world is all up in arms. Sting is gunna be there. They are passing the torch to Roman Reigns. Sting is totally hidden somewhere. What about the Total divas? Stephanie looks good standing next to women 10 years her junior. And STING!?!?

So Reigns is not a face because he has no problem beating John Cana. But he is really a face because he opposes the heels. It’s an odd way to both give him the rub and break up his group. When that happens, things get defined whether you do the defining or not. In this case, Reigns is getting defined despite being in some gray areas.

The wild card of the SHEILD is now trying to be the glue holding the Cena/Reigns faction together? Odd choice, but it is easily washed away by a group beating from the Authority. The “curb stomp,” which isn’t really one, looked good. Ambrose takes his beating like a man and then goes to a “local medical facility” to undergo “further evaluation” and possibly “get his balls tickled.” Possibly.

Oh, Miz. You did everything they asked of you… you just forgot how to get over. I, a man of my years, remember you and Morrison getting over as a tag team. You had charisma and edge and a talented partner and stuff. But you don’t have “it.” Or maybe they don’t give you a chance to show “it,” which the same as not having it for all intents and purposes. But you are still in the upper tiers of the WWE, and it seems like they are using you to… turn Sheamus? I feel like they have lit the fuse on that a dozen times and then stopped it from happening. The win actually worked, so that is good. A roll up after hanging up your yam bag on the top turnbuckle/rope is a good reason to get rolled up. So… congrats? Way to go, Miz?

So Layla and Summer Rae are all Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn… and Dolph is Batman? Or The Joker? Or just the good looking guy who gets to take advantage to the women looking to make the same guy jealous? In any case, Fandango gets easily distracted and takes a fameasser to lose. You would think someone would learn to focus in the WWE and become like a God, as someone loses once a week to theme music or standing on the announcer’s table.

Usos meet Wyatts. I look at that line up and I don’t believe that the Usos would EVER win. They aren’t bigger or stronger. They aren’t that fast. They aren’t that extreme. They aren’t that interesting. The biggest thing the Wyatts have going against them are that they are part of a small group. While it works for the shield, it would be odd to have the lower members of a messianic cult have titles. Having said that, I see the Usos keeping the belts because it feels like they are getting a Cena-esque push. A girlfriend on a TV show will take you far, won’t it, Dave Otunga?

My favorite comment I read about RAW was “Jack Swagger went from Jim Duggan to Hulk Hogan in two segments.” I have always touted Swagger’s natural ability. This gimmick is one of the gimmicks that will ALWAYS get over. Ask Jim Duggan. Ask Hulk Hogan. Rusev looks threatening, which helps. Transitioning Zeb into a face is awkward, but he did (and continues to do) the best he could with what he has to work with. The thrust kick into ankle lock spot was way over and was well-executed. I actually want to see this match.

Hey, did you guys know that I really like Del Rio? Huh, I have mentioned that before, have it? I didn’t have a problem with this match as a physical contest. I just find it odd that they are moving Del Rio down the card to go after the IC belt. Can’t be on top forever, but this match felt unimportant.

Women. Want to make Nikki turn or Brie. Or Brie turn on Nikki? I don’t know who is in there. Anyway, I think it would have been more telling had Stephanie been nice to Tits Bella. It provides some psychological reasoning for her turning on her sister when she comes back. Even if she doesn’t come back and just turns heel, it still explains it better than “was beaten into acquiescence.”

Also, Cameron can’t wrestle. Neither can Eva Marie. Alicia can’t really either, but she looks like Kurt Angle in their compared to Cameron. Natalya, who can, is nowhere to be seen. I get that Sara Del Ray is training them, but you can only do so much, no matter how good you are.

Heyman is backstage playing political games while Cesaro is out there losing to Big E. This win felt much more important to Big E than the Del Rio Win over RVD did despite the title implications in the RVD match. Not sure why Kingston was allowed to accompany Big E to the ring, or why it is a surprise that 2 faces can beat 1 heel, but the spots looked good. It didn’t feel like Cesaro paused to have the chair taken from him. This is his third loss to Big E, so it feels like it pushes him up the card a bit.

Heyman makes his move backstage. While all of the Authority have been bickering to HHH about who should get the belt and who WILL get the belt, Heyman shows up and offers a backup plan to HHHs back up plan. I hope everyone knows it is Lesner and not Cesaro. Also, no one could say for sure what was going on with Cesaro and Heyman. Don’t do that shit off camera. Show us the story, don’t tell it to us fresh off a commercial break.

Chris Jericho… talks. Bray does amazing promos, but in this dull, all talking build, it gets him a ”boring “ chant. Bray says he remembers Jericho promising to save us. Problem is, half the audience doesn’t remember that and the WWE is not one to remind anyone of the past (unless they can profit from it.) Virginia wanted action … they got the action. Jericho gets jumped and runs… and gets blindsided by Bray. For a guy who promised to play mind games and get “dark,” Jericho really hasn’t lived up to said claims yet. He is biding his time, funding the next Fozzy album with his WWE paychecks.

I loved the Bo Dallas match. Good spot to win on a count out. Good way to explain a tiny guy beating a giant without blinding speed and lucha spots. Bo’s yell of pain after getting hit was really good for the comedy spot that this match was built to. I just wish he could afford dry shirts.

The last match was all of what you expected and none of what you wanted to expect. No miraculous recovery by Ambrose, showing up with a neck brace and chair. No Sting coming down from the rafters. (Sting’s appearance, like a Goth Where’s Waldo, was in an ad for those who missed it.) Nothing but a group beating that leads to a DQ. I enjoyed RAW until the last match. It was like watching a building being erected that, once completed, is just a big gray block of warehouse.

A warehouse with Cena on it.

– Ryan

RAW is a bottle of Somas and a fifth of vodka.

Have you ever hung out with Sam or Noah? Here is the thing you need to know: If either of them hit a couch, there is a good chance one of them will fall asleep. The Panicos are the masters of falling asleep at inappropriate times, with Sam having an almost mutant, “X-Men ability” to fall asleep at 3 pm while in the middle of a conversation. It’s like hanging out with Jigglypuff.

Well, my $499 in tuition to the Sam Panico Masterclass on Falling Asleep finally paid off. I have tried to watch RAW a bunch of (3) times and I keep falling asleep. So instead of dishonestly reviewing the show, I will talk about the overarching themes that are kind of bugging me.

Let’s start with Dan Bryan having to vacate the title. I get that if you are afraid that he has a broken neck, there is no real way to have him drop the title. But to just have him come out and say goodbye seems like a lost opportunity. The Fed has been reeling since bringing the mountain to Mohammed on this one, not really sure where or what to do with him.

This brings me to a good segue: Dave Bautista. Original reports had it that Batista was to be fed to Bryan before taking the summer off for Guardians. But things haven’t been going Dave’s way as of late and he took off after the PPV. Rumors have swirled that he didn’t want to job to Bryan, which I have a hard time believing. He had no problem putting Rey over back in the day (even if he never dropped the title to him) and he was always very positive on Bryan in the past. Plus, despite my opinion on what he does itn eh ring, I never thought he was unprofessional. My guess is he is confused as to why the crowd hates him and he doesn’t want the negativity to impact his acting career. There is probably a money issue with PPVs being on the network now as well. And I don’t have a problem with any of that.

What I do have a problem with is that he was in one of the “main” programs. For all the complaints of Lesner being a “part-timer” and breaking UTs streak, he did his job and left. Batista just left. He was given hours of screen time and put into a story that affects the careers of a current top star trying to get “tenure” (so to speak) and three up and comers. It kills the reforming of Evolution. It shifts what to do with the world title, as Batista could have just as easily been the paper champ while they drew up new battle plans.

Speaking of title picture, can we talk about John Cena. What the fuck are they doing here? Bray Wyatt needs a push, not a series of flukes and weird coincidences that result in a token victory. Cena should have jobbed at Mania. End of story. Having Cena get freaked out over a weird kid that talks funny… he hasn’t encountered that with Make-a-Wish? Here is a hint: Want to turn Cena heel? Or make the temptation to give into the dark side mean something? Have Wyatt get the belt. John then HAS to stay in contact with the cancer to his legacy if he wants to free the title (and all the screen time that comes with it) from evil, icky, mean, not-so-goodie-mob of a Wyatt family. Then, when Bryan comes back, you can have him and Cena feud over the title and work the Bellas into it because you LOVE that people watch Total Divas.

So what do you do with HHH and Orton? Do you just quietly walk away from the reformed Evolution? Ignore that it happened. You can keep Orton feuding with Reigns, but where do you pit Rollins and Ambrose? Don’t break them up yet; you are just cutting the legs out from under a group that is drawing. Figure out something to transition quickly. Time for that huge 3MB push? Sign Samoa Joe and change his name to Joe Uso?

Oh, and all of this could lead to the WWE biting the bullet, sucking up to Punk and offering him a giant pile of cash to come back. He left after the Rumble… that Batista was shoehorned into and won. With Dave gone and the WWE hurting for top talent, it isn’t out of the realm of possibility. Personally, my guess is they try again to lure him in closer to September, when the initial re-ups come due for network subscribers. However, they do need a stop gap now and he is only human. Money is a GREAT motivator. If we suddenly see AJ Lee again, we know the trap has been baited.

Huh huh huh huh uh huh huh uh mmh heh huh. Baited.

-Ryan
Graduate of the 2014 Sam Panico Masterclass on Falling Asleep
Minor in Myoclonic jerk.

(I promise, I will get to watch them again some day. Or I can watch TN and see what they were doing 2 months ago in a telanovella fashion)

RAW existed

So i have tried to watch RAW twice. Problem is i strained my neck sucking so many dicks, I can barely stay upright to watch it. I made it though most of RAW. Seriously, it was a challenge. It felt like all anyone did was not wrestle. Cena teased a heel turn before Bray Wyatt brought out a children’s choir. Why is it spooky that he hired a children’s choir? They were all in matching robes. If they were mismatched kids who were is dirty street clothes, THAT would have been spooky. Instead all it does is make John Cena hint at a heel turn that will never happen because Cena sells merch. If anyone else got he rub that Cena got, he would be able to sell the never-ending cavalcade of varied products that Cena is tied to, but the end of the Attitude era also meant the end of the office pushing you.

Seriously, I am a huge Wyatt fan, but that took forever and was boring. It was memorable, but ti could have been that in 5 minutes. Maybe give a match to Yoshi Tatsu or Darren Young or any of the other guys in the side room at Omega Theta Pi.

Rybaxel have to give their win back to the Usos. So they did. I don’t have a problem with any of them, but i was distracted by the pain. It’s tough to chump out guys and then do a 180 and ask people to care about them, even if they aren’t doing anything wrong. Also, terrible neck pain.

Speaking of talking, Kane and Stephanie. Man, i don’t care. I didn’t have a problem with her doing heel promos. They had been pretty good. But damn, i don’t care about her apologizing or Thing 1 calling her a bitch. If Kane is only evil when wearing the mask, and you clearly got him to take it off and give it to you before, then why not just destroy it? Also, thank you Dan Bryan for swinging that wrench like an actual weapon. HHH and his utter confusion at how a sledge hammer is used had me convinced that all of the WWE were idiots. I’d watch you hitting people with wrenches all day. However, you whining in the triage after: I’d rather watch paint dry.

You know, Titus O’Neal is chock full o’ personality. Just downright charming. So OF COURSE the WWE doesn’t let him talk. He needs some of that mic time that everyone else had. Instead he manhandles Sheamus and then takes a foot square in the face. I thought the brogue kick looked nice on that. Set Titus up in a squad with Brodus Clay as a taker and a monster. Watch them soar… as high as you can int eh tag league in the WWE.

Uhm… it got fuzzy here. There was a ladies match. No idea. Van Dam was gunna take on Barrett for the IC shot at the PPV. I assume Barrett won. OH! Hugh Jackman was on. I remember the collapse of the already flimsy Magneto sketch. that was more talking that didn’t need to exist. I am sure that will lead to a Sandow/Ziggler feud that will get SO MUCH promotion and not delegated to Tuesday Night’s Main Event. Uh, i think there was another Cesaro/Swagger match. I fell asleep and was awakened by Ric Flair, speaking of promos that fall apart. I am only guessing he is with the Shield and some of the Shield and Evolution fought.

So yeah. I watched most of RAW. Kinda.

-Ryan

Smackdown reminds me a lot of debate club, what with all the steroids.

Smackdown started with a little production gimmickry. It ididn’t start with an aimage, it started with a sound. Agaisnt a black screen,we ae greeted with Vicky Guerrereo’s two word heat generator: Excuse Me! The outcry of boos are immediate and loud. Then the image comes up to a tightly cropped shot of Vicky saying the Authority is off tonight. Also the Shield are having another 11 on 3 handicapped match. With that out of the way, we get the reveal of more gimmickry: Vicky isn’t alone. She is in the middle of a debate floor! Amazing the things that people would rather have on TV than wrestling.

I say that, but I have enjoyed the Heyman gimmick of repeating that Brock broke the streak and injecting it into whatever he says anytime he is given a chance to speak. I was actually disappointed that he diverged from that to promote Cesaro. The debate ended as all debates end: with a pull apart. Then we come back from the commercial break and there is a wrestling match. It was a fantastic match. Bryan and Cesaro have figured out the formula to transfer from indy darling to successful WWE superstar: 1) Find one simple thing, 2) Do it a lot, 3) sneak in some actual wrestling as connector spots between your 1 big thing to remind the IWC that you are still you underneath all that WWE gimmickry, and 4)push ups!

I really liked Swagger/Cesaro. I think they had a good match. I hope this is continuing to the PPV. I get that Cesaro is getting the push here, but a good series and Swagger could be used for something great after. I still don’t get who is the face, but so far the program has worked for the most part. Cesaro wins and Swagger is left lying… only to get beat down after by the Shield. They announce that Swagger was part of their match later, so we can count him as “tooken out.” This will be a running theme throughout the night.

Tamina got to show how green she still is. Natalya is good, but she needs to stop the discus clothesline. IT looks very glitchy, like a programmer put pre-programmed animations together to make her move. Tamina wins with a kick that looked like it benefitted from careful editing.

3MB run into the shield backstage and it ends as you would expect. This prompts Trips to call in and give Vickie the night off and Brad Maddox gets the nod to go to the mound. That’ll really move the chains. This was done because you can’t have the Shield beat up Vickie. Maddox gets thrown behind the couch and I think Ambrose might have humped him.

He might have?

Perfect Jr. had a match against an Uso. He won because the only way the WWE can build interest in their tag division is with non title wins over the tag champs. This felt very perfunctory.

The Wyatt’s came down to the ring and Bray cut a promo in a steel cage. They seem to be doing a lot of talking this show. It feels like they had a major star have to leave quickly and parts of the show had to be rewritten. Bray cuts a great promo in the cage. It’s a shame that it has to end with a match against Cena. The other guys then beat the Rhodes Brothers. I guess Cody calmed down between now and his last match and everything got ironed out and Golddust, a well-established veteran, has not seen where the path that his brother is going down leads? Cool then.

Fandango has a match so the Shield can take him out too. While I don’t have a problem with the idea here, the execution is making Smackdown and its matches seem very inconsequential. The B-team are only having matches so the Shield can take the heels out after. Fandando gets a powerbomb off the stage through some tables that someone just happened to set up and leave there. They then go to the back and beat up Curtis Axel cuz he had the temerity to win his match tonight. This reduces the handicap match to 5 on 3. This made it SUPER EASY for the shield to run through the rest of the guys, including a former world champ. Damien Sandow is there to take the fall and the Shield stand victorious as long as Triple HHH isn’t physically in the building.

-Ryan