Tuesday, May 26, 2009

WWE Raw Report

Date: 05/25/09 from Los Angeles, CA.

The Big News: I can’t recall an entertainment product this pathetically crafted to soothe the insecurities and neuroses of its creator since M. Night Shyamalan’s Lady in the Water.

Show Analysis:

Michael Cole and Jim Ross did commentary this week, since Jerry Lawler was wrestling in the main event. They announced a “capacity crowd” at the Staples Center, even though the entire gigantic top section was clearly blocked off. They had to use weird camera angles for crowd shots to try to cover for that.

They ran a long video package explaining Vince McMahon’s feud with the Denver Nuggets’ owner for the 100 percent of his audience that doesn’t give a shit. The fake Nuggets owner came out, and they then showed a fake David Stern, fake Jerry Buss and fake Jack Nicholson in the front row. I can’t even put into words how low rent this made WWE look.

The fake Nuggets owner talked about how he hates the WWE. Vince McMahon then came out and cut a long, unfunny, juvenile, idiotic and generally worthless promo on the guy. He shoved him down. Good for you, Vince. You sure showed them. And it was so entertaining for us, the WWE Universe. Thanks so much. I sure wish that UFC shows started with long skits featuring Dana White cutting promos on a fake Loretta Hunt.

Miz came out in a Cleveland Cavaliers jersey, and said that the Cavs will win the NBA title because LeBron James, like the Miz, is awesome. He said John Cena is a phony poser like Kobe Bryant. Cena finally came out, but Ted DiBiase and Cody Rhodes jumped him from behind. Batista, Big Show and Jerry Lawler joined the fracas. Cena and Batista cleared the ring.

Kelly Kelly beat Maryse via DQ. Maryse was announced as from Montreal, Ontario. I understand their sister city is New Orleans, Georgia. Maryse and Kelly brawled, and it went to the outside. Maryse threw Kelly on the announce table, and was disqualified for this.

How did this get approved? Shouldn’t someone in the writing room have pointed out that someone has been shoved onto the announce table 18,000 times over the history of Raw and it has never even been a DQ tease let alone a DQ? Is it so hard to come up with a different scenario for a DQ? Maryse hits Kelly with the title belt? Maryse refuses to break a choke hold at five? Maryse hits the referee? Someone interferes? Something? I mean, I know we WWE viewers are a dumb bunch, but surely a few of us have some semblance of memory and logic, right?

Fake Jack Nicholson was backstage. Despite looking absolutely nothing like the real Nicholson, he was mobbed by the moronic WWE performers. Hornswoggle, Goldust and the Bellas were so excited he was there. It ended with a moronic parody of A Few Good Men by Goldust. He’s doing the Tourette’s gimmick again. I really missed that one.

Ric Flair met with Batista backstage. Flair insisted that he was going to call out Randy Orton. Batista suggested Flair call out Orton after Batista destroys Orton in the cage match. I took this as a clear heel tease, because the sentiment was so condescending. Batista didn’t deliver this in a condescending manner, however.

Kofi Kingston beat Matt Hardy and William Regal in a triple threat match to earn a United States title shot. Regal hit Kofi with knees and European uppercuts. Kofi did a cool spot where he bounced off the ropes via his head. He went for a high double leg drop but Matt tripped him up. Kofi hit a missile dropkick on Regal and high double leg drop on Matt. Regal used an exploder on Kofi and Matt used a side effect on Regal. Kofi then nailed Regal with trouble in paradise. Matt went to hit Kofi with the cast but Kofi caught him with trouble in paradise as well to secure the pin.

Flair called out Orton. Orton said that he could beat up Flair, but that he wouldn’t lower himself to beating up a 60-year-old like Chris Jericho did. Flair started screaming at him. Orton said it is all over for Flair. Flair slapped Orton. Orton then beat up Flair until Batista made the save and Orton bailed. Batista held Flair back. This was a good angle. Mr. Kennedy then came out and said he would be the mystery partner in the 10 man tag main event. I’m not sure why he did that at this point in the show.

Santino and Mickie James beat Beth Phoenix and Chavo Guerrero. The heels worked over Santino, and Santino ran away from Beth. Mickie came in with dropkicks to Beth. Beth went after Santino and Mickie used a crucifix cradle on her for the pin. Santino got to pick a match between Santina and Vickie at Extreme Rules. Vickie said she wasn’t worried because Chavo would be in her corner. Santino was given some awful comedy material that died a horrible death with the audience and announced a hog pen match.

Big Show and Miz met backstage. Show said that he doesn’t like the Miz, that nobody likes the Miz, and that Miz won’t get the pin on John Cena because he is going to make Cena tap out. Good luck on that one, buddy.

Goldust and Hornswoggle beat Festus and The Brian Kendrick. Festus wouldn’t attack Hornswoggle so Kendrick tagged in and beat up Hornswoggle. Goldust tagged in and hit an inverted atomic drop and lariat. Kendrick wanted the tag but Festus refused. Goldust gave Kendrick a power slam, Hornswoggle gave him the frog splash and Goldust hit the final cut for the pin. Goldust looked good here. Kendrick was going to punish Festus with a chair after but Primo Colon rang a bell.

Mr. Kennedy, MVP, Jerry Lawler, Batista and John Cena beat Big Show, Randy Orton, Cody Rhodes, Ted DiBiase and the Miz. The heels worked over MVP. He got the tag to Kennedy, who got in a little offense but then got worked over himself. He eventually tagged Cena. Cena tagged MVP and they did balling and you can’t see me together. MVP hit the playmaker on Rhodes for the win. It was smart to give the pin to someone who can use it more. After the finish there was a series where everyone gave each other finishers. It culminated with a Cena and Batista double team suplex on Show.

Final Thoughts:

Hey Vince, you know how you want higher ad rates? Know how it drives you nuts that advertisers think your audience has no education level and no disposable income? Well, it’s not because of blood or T&A. Those things didn’t sink The Sopranos. No, in fact, the problem is nonsense like you’ve pulled this week and on this show. You’re 63 years old. Grow up. Mature adults don’t want to be associated with this idiocy.

The interview I referred to last week with Alex Reimer is actually available here:


Sorry for the wrong link last week. Also, here is the second piece in my UFC retrospective series. It focuses on the dark days of UFC and features thoughts from Jens Pulver, Pat Miletich and Kevin Randleman.



Blogger Steve Khan said...

Vince has Enos envy.

11:45 AM  
Blogger AKFooFighter said...

Within the first three minutes of the "Vince and Enos Show", I wondered what my man Todd would have to say about this mess.

I kept coming back to this - I don't care for the Lakers, Nuggets or the NBA for that matter. I barely care about WWE any longer. Why would anyone think casual viewers would find segments dedicated to the various scenarios of the last week entertaining? It was just lame.

But what else is new?

Let's go Red Wings.

- Matt in Anchorage

12:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Last night was flat out embarrassing. Personally I hope that (a) they get low ratings for this and (b) the Nuggets eliminate LA from the playoffs. I totally agree with this blog. Vince needs to get his head out of his ass BIG TIME.

1:19 PM  
Blogger Bobcat said...

Hey Todd,

How do you think the Miz has been doing with his push? I'm not impressed so far, though I'm glad to see that someone besides Cena/Orton/HHH is getting a push.

1:25 PM  
Anonymous Bob said...

Here's what I don't ever want to see again: Wrestlers arbitrary divided into groups, each group wearing a t-shirt for that group.

I hate it for the drafts, and I hated it even more on this Raw when they were representing basketball teams.

The wrestlers should be portrayed at top athletes, in high demand around the world, that the WWE, being the premiere organization, has acquired the services of. They should be portrayed as big stars.

Yes, we all know they're really just a bunch of carnival animals that would (literally, as we've seen) kiss the boss's ass to keep the jobs they hold with this defacto monopoly company, but they shouldn't be portrayed that in the storylines.

This was even worse than in the draft battle royals, because at least there it's generally second- and third-tier guys, and they're fighting for the show they're part of, which is at least somewhat plausible.

But here we had the very top active wrestlers on the Raw brand supporting basketball teams just because their boss is having a hissy fit over getting his show bumped. They looked like a bunch of idiots.

3:35 PM  
Blogger Todd Martin said...

I think Miz has done tremendously with the semi-push he's getting (I'll call it a full fledged push when he starts beating people). Although I thought last night he didn't do very well at all.

And I couldn't agree more on the point about grouping wrestlers with t-shirts. That was part of why I thought the IFL MMA league looked so minor league.

3:40 PM  
Anonymous DW said...

The delusional, egomaniacal McMahon thinks the audience and fans are as interested in his mundane, petty business disagreements as he is. He's on an ego trip like no one can believe. And, the creative failures that work for him had one less thing to come up with for the show. They must have been happy.

Todd, my thanks to you for calling this crap exactly what it is. And for calling McMahon on the carpet. I hope they read your column, but I daresay the egos over at the WWE will ignore it.

And as I've mentioned before - to some criticism - it only proves that the majority of fans are imbeciles. To applaud for this crap, to continue to pay money for this mindless waste of time is something only idiots would do. Here at this forum, I can see that we're all ready to divest ourselves of this foolishness - but we cling on hoping that something good will eventually come with all the talented performers on the show (excluding Triple H, in my own opinion). Let's hang on as long as we can, though - the criticism is necessary to attempt to bring an end to the WWE nonsense.

5:02 PM  
Blogger hobbyfan said...

A large part of WWE's problems stems from inconsistent writing. Too many plot holes that are left ignored. This is what happens when the McMahons hire failed Hollywood writers, comic geeks included, and don't educate them on the business completely.

6:53 PM  
Blogger Patrick said...

im done with this show. I'm switching to smackdown.

11:21 PM  
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7:22 PM  

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