Monday, November 19, 2007

Raw Report

Date: 11/19/07 from Ft. Lauderdale, FL.

The Big News: Chris Jericho is back to save us all.

Show Analysis:

Shawn Michaels came out to start the show. He said that the better man won last night, and invited Randy Orton to the ring to shake his hand. Orton appeared on the screen and said he wasn’t falling for that. Michaels admitted it was a setup, but that he planned on challenging him to a title rematch before kicking him. Orton said he wouldn’t come down, and that he had a guy running around with a torch to symbolize the passing of the torch to him. They cut to this guy throughout the show.

Michaels was then joined by Mr. Kennedy. When Kennedy went to grab the microphone, Michaels punched him and knocked him out of the ring. That was funny. Kennedy gained control and rammed Michaels into the post. Kennedy said Michaels had his shot and now it’s his turn. Michaels challenged him to a match. Kennedy said Michaels is most famous for losing. Regal ordered the match, which never ended up happening. They brawled on the outside so the match never started. Michaels gave him sweet chin music into a chair and that was it.

Jerry Lawler beat Santino Marella again. Santino got the crown from Lawler and said that he would beat Lawler like a rented dog. He continued to run down Lawler, who used a backslide for the pin. Randy Orton then ran in and gave Lawler the RKO. Backstage, Mr. Kennedy said Michaels is trying to hold him down. Kennedy said he won’t be denied.

Vince McMahon said that he thought Survivor Series was one of the best of all time, and wanted to get the independent views of William Regal and Coach. Okay, so they’re satirizing their own booking meetings. Coach and Regal joked about Hornswoggle last night. Carlito then showed up and said he liked Vince’s tough love of Hornswoggle. Vince in turn made Carlito vs. Hornswoggle.

Jeff Hardy beat Umaga via DQ. They did an old school big man/little man match. Umaga applied a long nerve hold. Umaga ran into a post and Jeff hit the DDT, but Umaga cut off his momentum and went back to the nerve hold. Umaga hit some kicks and a sick looking spinning uranage. He went back to the nerve hold. Umaga missed a head butt off the second rope, and Jeff hit the whisper in the wind and mule kick. He missed the swanton, and Umaga hit the Samoan drop. He missed the Samoan spike, and Jeff hit a twist of fate.

Umaga went to the outside, and Jeff hit a baseball slide and pescado. At that point Snitsky ran in. Snitsky and Umaga double teamed Jeff and knocked him out of the ring. HHH then came out and fought off both heels by himself. Jeff rolled back into the ring and they celebrated together. The match was pretty slow, with the constant rest holds dragging it down. It picked up well towards the end but the finish was a real letdown. HHH was asked why he came out to help Jeff, and he said that he wanted to show who the real badass is. He has nothing in common with Jeff, except respect.

Cody Rhodes finally defeated Hardcore Holly in a quick match. Holly used punches, slams, clotheslines, and a drop kick. He went for the Alabama slam, but Cody escaped and hit the DDT for the pin. There was very little response, and Orton came in and laid out both with RKOs. This Cody Rhodes/Hardcore Holly feud has been a total disaster.

Finlay and Vince were chatting backstage. Vince said he doesn’t like surprises, but Finlay said the Irish do. Vince suggested they go out for a drink after the show. Finlay said he would get Vince some milk, which is what Vince needs at his age. Vince was angry, but Finlay said he was joking. They were teasing dissension between the two. They then announced that Ric Flair will return next week.

Mickie James and Maria beat Jillian Hall and Melina. Before the match, Jillian Hall ran down Lilian Garcia and a musician who collaborated on her album. It went on and on, and the guy didn’t seem to understand what was going on at all. This led into a quick and typically sloppy match.

This week’s near death involved Jillian trying to hit a 450, and landing wrong with her knees crashing on Melina. They really need to tell these inexperienced women that they need to refrain from doing really dangerous moves. Melina survived, luckily. The finish saw Jillian Hall rub Mickie’s face in her boobs. Mickie responded by kissing Jillian and knocking her out with a kick. This segment was a disaster in so many ways.

Hornswoggle beat Carlito. Yes, one segment they had breast smothering and lesbian kisses, and the very next segment was midget comedy aimed at children. I don’t care about “protecting” children from “objectionable” content, but this is one serious identity crisis as far as the target audience. Hornswoggle ran away from Carlito, and dumped water on him. Carlito was going to spit apple in his face, but Finlay came in. Carlito spit apple in Finlay’s face, so Finlay attacked Carlito and dropped Hornswoggle on him for the pin. Hornswoggle then spit apple in the face of Carlito.

Randy Orton was in the ring at the end of the show, waiting for the guy carrying the torch. The guy got clotheslined by Chris Jericho. The graphic appeared, and was decoded to say save_us_y2j. There was then a countdown and the old break the walls music. The announcers put over the reaction to Jericho huge. Jericho told the fans to call their friends and tell them he is back. He promised to excite and delight. Orton wanted to know what Jericho is saving us from. Jericho said Orton’s boring personality and monotonous voice, amongst a number of complaints. Jericho said he will take Orton’s title.

Final Thoughts:

This was a dull but inoffensive show. The Chris Jericho return was fine. It didn’t come across as a monumental moment, but the follow through was going to be the key no matter what happened the first week. I’ll be discussing Jericho’s return further on Fight Network Radio tomorrow at 3PM Eastern/12PM Pacific tomorrow (Tuesday). Check it out, and have a good week.


Anonymous mean dean said...

Didn't Santino say "government dog" and not "rented dog?" He also mentioned the match was a "knobberslocker," which was excellent. That entire segment was great, especially Santino saying "look, I'm Jerry Stupid Lawler."

I loved hearing Jericho's old theme, and the countdown being back.

Triple H's face looks the leanest it has in years to me, closer to the old D-X Triple H that is has been in a long time.

12:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought the Umaga/Jeff Hardy match was good but the Snitsky run in made absolutely no sense and ruined the anticipated finish. Did the TNA writers make a one day cameo on RAW??

8:40 AM  
Blogger Kirk Sheppard said...

First of all, Jon Secada is not "some musician." He is a huge star in the adult contemporary/latin music industry.

Secondly, Jillian Hall is not inexperienced. She has been wrestling on the indies as Mercedes for nearly 7 years and spent a good deal of time in OVW. She and Mickie James, when allowed, can have one of the best women's matches around. Spots get blown, even by the best of wrestlers, especially high risk ones. Ease up, Todd.


8:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

First of all, Jon Secada is not "some musician." He is a huge star in the adult contemporary/latin music industry

99% couldn't pick him out if their life depended on it....Y2J is back and im already sick of him...You just knew HHH was gonna get his pound of flesh for letting Jeff get the pin last night so he has to save poor lil Jeff tonight..Watching Tazz suck up on the ppv was sad

10:48 AM  
Anonymous the masterbater said...

Carlito loses to a midget? I mean serously, did this guy say the wrong thing to someone in the higher ups? I watched Raw for the first time in soo long just to watch Jericho come back and I was a little bit dissapointed. Maybe wrestling doesn't have the same feel for me know as it did awhile while back. Or maybe I am trying to comepare Jericho's debut when he confronted the Rock. Orton just doesn't do it for me. He seems so lame, no character just no passion in him. Seems like he has no chemistry when him and Jericho were on their confrontation.

10:52 AM  
Blogger Todd Martin said...

I thought he said rented, as a takeoff of rented mule. Obviously government dog would work with JR's government mule thing, so I'm not sure on that one.

I totally agree on the Snitsky run-in making no sense. I made a bunch of different points about that match so I left that off but I was wondering that too.

Nobody in the live crowd knew who Secada was, so to the Raw audience I suspect he's likely just some musician. But that wasn't meant as a knock on him, if he has been successful good for him. Doesn't really matter in the context of what he meant to the wrestling show.

As for Hall, she's never impressed me much, and she's spent a lot of time working as a valet that has limited her ring progression. She may be on the upper end of WWE women, but that's not saying much. Maybe I'm being unfair to her specifically, but the point is a broader one - they have these women's matches every week that feature horribly blown spots every single time, and they need to be toning down the risks given how often they screw up. And I feel bad about saying that because I'd like to see the women have good, athletic matches and be showcased as something more than T&A. It's just I don't trust their roster to pull that off aside from Mickie and Victoria.

11:50 AM  
Anonymous tyson kaethler said...

I fucking still can't believe they put 80% of these women in matches. MATCHES! Maria should not be wrestling. Neither should Kelly Kelly, or Layla, or Ashley, or Michelle McCool, or Torrie.

The only women I take seriously when they wrestle are Mickie James, Victoria, Beth Pheonix, Jillian Hall and Melina. I don't mind Candice as much because at least she improves and tries to look credible. The noobs I mentioned above (the Maria list) don't look like fighters whatsoever, and so they don't look believable when they wrestle. And they can't even lock up or run the ropes for god's sake!

I'm gonna stop this rant before I burn out.

2:37 PM  
Anonymous CF Kane said...

I don't know if it was due to it being a pretty dead crowd, but the YTJ return almost felt anticlimactic...they sold it like the crowd was going berserk, but it was pretty obvious that they weren't. I'd have liked to have seen the reaction he would have gotten in Canada...this isn't his, or WWE's fault, just the way that it felt. Ditto on could feel whatever air was in the crowd just fizzle out. Why bring him in? Just so Hunter can beat him up? Christ, Paul, do that on your own time. HBK/Kennedy seems like a good idea, but I really felt no chemistry between the two. It's early, though. The segment with the women went on literally forever (Monsoon reference)'s not a slight on Jon Secada, who has not been a mainstream pop star in over a decade, but if you are gonna use these guys, at least try to clue them in on how this stuff works. He seemed totally oblivious, much like the director of 'The Condemned' a couple of weeks back ( I couldn't tell if that guy was pissed at the fact that Santino was essentially shooting on him, or he's just a damn fine actor. I'll go with column A.). They at least put Orton over fairly strong, but he's undoubtedly limited in the charisma factor. There's just no comparison, in Type A Heels, between he and Edge. Edge is a genius at this stuff; Orton just fits the suit. An Edge/Jericho program would just about make the nut these days. Orton can't keep up with these smart aleck types; he sounds flustered. I actually thought that they were going to put Hardy in a program with Orton, but I suppose they have to strike while the iron's hot with Jericho. It is saying something when the best part of the show, week in and week out, is Santino's rantings. I suppose Flair is next for him, since they won't put him with any body under 40. It's really time for the midget comedy to go away; it's not getting over, the bits seem to go on forever, and if it's all to set up a Finlay/McMahon match, I cannot fathom the rationale for it. Would ANYBODY care?
I am in love with Mickie, though. Had to be said.

4:12 PM  
Anonymous Bob said...

It was "government dog".

I'm a big Jericho fan, but I thought his comeback flopped. The crowd seemed surprisingly indifferent, his "lead singer revving up the crowd" delivery didn't really work (especially since he's a face), and he had to work with that moron Orton.

Also, and as someone who wants to see the WWE cleaned up it pains me to say this, his appearance was not up to par. If you want to come back and jump into the title picture as a major threat, shouldn't you look like threat? Jericho looked small and soft. I don't want him to run out and start taking advantage of the gigantic loopholes in the WWE Wellness policy, but some time in the gym or a change in wardrobe (ie, no sleeveless shirts) couldn't hurt.

Let's say the WWE were booking an angle where a wrestler left for a while to become a rock star, then arrogantly came back thinking he still had it, only to get pasted by the competition. If that were the plan, Jericho would have the perfect look for that part. I am assuming that is not the plan, so this is not the look for him.

When the segment started I was actually hoping they'd let him verbally spar with Orton, but instead he had a long monologue then a quick exchange with Orton. They should have let him verbally rip Orton to pieces (let Orton try to keep up; with no scripting he'd do a great job falling to pieces) and then beat the holy hell out of him. If he can't look intimidating while standing there, a beatdown would have let him establish what regardless of how Jericho looks he can still get the job done.

Anyway, I don't think any permanent damage was done, but this was a major disappointment for his re-debut.

6:10 PM  
Anonymous Phil said...

You should have a field day reviewing that show. It was one of the worst of the year or heck of the entire fifteen year run.

8:11 PM  

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