Monday, November 02, 2009

WWE Raw Report

Date: 11/02/09 from Worcester, MA.

The Big News: Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne are big wrestling fans.

Show Analysis:

Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne were in the ring to start the show. Miz came out and asked them to have his loss to Evan Bourne last week struck from the record. Ozzy wanted to know who the Miz is. Cody Rhodes and Ted DiBiase came out and wanted a handicap match with Kofi Kingston. Big Show then came out and demanded an apology for what the Raw roster did to him last week. Ozzy apologized, which was funny. Show said he was talking about an apology from the wrestlers involved.

DX came out and whispered alternate suggestions to Ozzy and Sharon. Ozzy made Miz vs. “Evan Bron” for the US title. “Close enough,” said Triple H. Sharon then made “Kobe Kingston” vs. Randy Orton. Show tried to make Cena vs. HHH vs. Michaels but HHH interjected and made Cena vs. Jericho vs. Show.

Miz beat Evan Bourne in a fun short match. Bourne went for some pinning attempts. He hit an enzuigiri and went for the shooting star press but Miz rolled out of the way and Bourne landed on his feet. Miz then hit the skull crushing finale for the pin.

Sheamus beat Jamie Noble. The crowd is still at the point of complete disinterest in Sheamus, mugging for the camera and not reacting to anything in the match. Sheamus hit a uranage into a back breaker and a leaping front kick. He had the pin but picked up Noble. He then kept kicking Noble in the corner and the referee stopped the match. Sheamus kicked Noble out of the ring and gave him a power bomb on the floor. Noble did a terrific job selling and was carried out on a stretcher.

Kofi Kingston did a brief interview backstage. He said that Randy Orton is a bully looking to blame someone else for his troubles. Kingston said he won’t be bullied and won’t back down. He added that he left Orton’s mirror on the car last week so that Orton could see who is responsible for Orton losing the title. This was another good promo by Kingston, who I’m really becoming high on.

Kofi Kingston, MVP and Mark Henry beat Randy Orton, Cody Rhodes and Ted DiBiase. This started as a singles match between Kingston and Orton, but Legacy interfered basically immediately. Kingston hit a tope on all three and the Osbournes announced a 6 man tag. The faces were successful early until the heels took over on MVP. MVP eventually got the tag to Henry who hit a corner avalanche on Rhodes. Orton went for the RKO on Henry but Kingston took out Orton. Henry then caught Rhodes coming off the ropes with the world’s strongest slam for the pin.

They did a “Raw’s Got Talent” sketch with Sharon, Ozzy and Great Khali as judges. The first act was Santino biting the head off a Batman doll, which everyone agreed sucked. The second act was Chris Masters flexing his muscles to a song, which was actually pretty damn funny.

The final act was Chavo Guerrero and Jillian Hall singing. Will Jillian’s gimmick never die? It’s a one note joke that was never funny and it’s been going on for years now. Bring back Ron Simmons. At least that one was funny even when it was kind of played out. Anyway, Sharon slapped Jillian and Khali gave Chavo the chop. Hornswoggle then came out for his cameo. This wasn’t good, but I was expecting much worse. They announced Ricky Hatton as guest host of Raw next week, which should be fun. I hope a heel shows clips of the Pacquiao fight for heat.

Alicia Fox won a 6 woman battle royal to earn another shot at the women’s title. Kelly Kelly accidentally dumped Gail Kim first. They’re labeled close friends so evidently one is turning on the other soon. Eve Torres eliminated both Bella twins. Jack Swagger came out, which distracted Eve and allowed her to be eliminated by Fox. Finally Fox caught Kelly in a handspring elbow attempt and threw her over the top.

Backstage, Chris Jericho told Ozzy Osbourne that Ozzy was his hero growing up but said that now he is better than Ozzy. After he left Ozzy asked Sharon, “Who is that joke?” Okay, it’s fine if the guest host says he doesn’t know who Santino is. And I’ll cut them a break on Miz, since he is still a guy on the rise. But it’s astonishingly stupid to bring in a celebrity and script him to say that he is completely unaware of the identity of one of your biggest stars.

Elsewhere backstage, DX told Hornswoggle that if he imitates DX again he will be in big trouble. John Cena came in and defended Hornswoggle. HHH pointed out he beat Cena two weeks ago. Michaels then pointed out they are in England next week where Michaels beat Cena. Cena responded that he has beaten Michaels and beaten HHH as well. He added that they have all beaten each other all the time.

This was the point where I threw my hands in the air in exasperation. They are now at the point where they’re affirmatively pointing out that their matches are stale and we’ve seen every possible finish already. And what was the reason for bringing this point up? Why, it was a masturbation joke. “Beat each other.” Get it? The Bella twins cringed and Cena was embarrassed. Cena and DX did some more goofy comedic interplay to build their title match.

Chris Jericho won a triple threat match over Big Show and John Cena. DX did commentary, which was quite the scene. They went on this long comedy discussion about math, including once again putting over the idiot logic that there are even odds of any result in a skill-based competition. Thank God they haven’t tried a WWE casino. HHH also made a bunch of inside references, referencing people talking into headsets and mocking Michael Cole for vintage over and over again.

Jericho and Show worked over Cena for a while together. Cena came back with a bulldog on Jericho but Show caught him with a spear and Jericho gave him a lionsault. Jericho covered but Show pulled him off. Jericho and Show got into an argument and Jericho slapped Show.

Cena took over on Show and Jericho. He gave Jericho the five knuckle and went for the FU but Show caught him with the knockout punch. Jericho then fell on Cena for the pin. After the match Jericho and Show put Cena in a combination camel clutch/Walls of Jericho. DX tried to make the save but Show caught Michaels with the KO punch and Jericho gave HHH the code breaker.

Final Thoughts:

This show had its hits and misses but I thought overall it was a success.

The Kofi Kingston-Randy Orton program seemed designed to build Orton back up following his title loss, but given how well Kingston is working as a more serious face I think WWE should reconsider how they are going to book the program. Orton is obviously the much better performer overall and maybe the most talented guy WWE has on the entire roster, but it’s not like he’s in great need of help. I think the priority should become to make Kingston look good and see what you can do with him. This is a more important point for Kingston than it is for Orton.


Anonymous Bob said...

I thought the "vintage" jokes were funny. Easy, but funny. When you have Cole saying, "This is vintage Bragging Rights!" on the very first Bragging Rights show, the guy deserves to be mocked endlessly.

Triple H or Michaels also had a great line about how a voice in their head kept saying over and over that they should point out something about the match. I'm guessing Vince had been yelling that for a while and they had been ignoring him. Definitely an inside joke, but still hilarious.

Jericho's rant about how the guest hosts are ruining the show made me his biggest fan. I like Ozzy and Sharon well enough, but their interaction with the wrestlers diminished the wrestlers' importance.

Some good matches and good development of Kofi. Kind of weak that they transitioned him from Jamaican to Ghanan with no serious explanation, but it was definitely good to see him shed the clownish character. He just needs to lose the "boom boom boom!" routine (which probably won't happen).

4:31 AM  
Blogger hobbyfan said...

Apparently Ozzy & Sharon forgot to provide the writers and/or Hornswoggle with a recent photo of Jack, since he lost the afro a long time ago. Oddly enough, Jack Osbourne was featured on a VH1 special that was rerun earlier in the night. I guess Ozzy was filling in for Piers Morgan while Khali made a much taller David Hasselhoff and without the attendant drama. Silly, but it dragged.

When Sheamus hit the powerbomb on Noble, I was reminded of when Big Van Vader's match with Joe Thurman on TBS in 1991. I can't see where this is going, other than establishing Sheamus as a threat to the US or WWE titles.

I'm surprised Jericho, who has used Fozzy bandmates for heel angles in the past, didn't note the origins of his band in relation to Ozzy.

Cole deserved to get mocked for the overuse of the word "vintage". Maybe they should have him play Password and fumble with "vintage".

Cena jobbing in the main event doesn't mean he'll lose the title at Survivor Series (and probably won't), but Team Smugness ("Jeri-Show") needs to be brought back to earth sooner rather than later. Jericho's act is growing stale.

We'd all be better off if Cena went back to the freestyle raps that got him over in the first place. His match vs. DX should be fun, but I can't see him losing just yet.

Aside from the title matches already announced, nothing was done to set up Survivor Series. In that regard, this was a failure.

I keep waiting for DX to open the doors to the writers' room (as long as Steph isn't there) to expose how bad the writing is and that they do write their own material (which I believe they so much as said in their book). It's time to let the talent sell themselves old school style.

5:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Does it really downgrade the wrestlers when it's established that Ozzy doesn't know where he is 100% of the time?

6:34 AM  
Anonymous DW said...

Of course, Triple H and Michaels write their own stuff, as mentioned above. Anybody who doesn't know that is living in a cave. To be more exact, it's Triple H that probably makes the final approval though. Even though HBK is Trips' stooge, he doesn't have equal footing, evidenced by many, many subtle moments where he takes a back seat when they appear together. What is more important to note, though, is that it doesn't stop there. Triple H doesn't just write his own stuff, he writes all of it, or at least he gets to approve it. I am so very certain that if a script - the whole damn thing - doesn't pass his muster, it goes back for a rewrite. So, in effect, he writes it all. He's just a lazy bastard and gets everybody else to do the work while he wields the approval pen (I'm sure he can't write worth a damn anyway). Have the characters write their own stuff? Please, not with that prick Triple H around. Banish every wrestler from the creative board room and hire some professionals (with decent credentials, that is).

I don't believe for one second that they are trying to build Orton up after his recent feuds. The idea that they should change the writing to play it more in favor of Kingston makes no sense, because that is exactly where they are going anyway. It's the same old crap - the heel (Orton) will look like a chump, even though he may eke out victories. This s**t is all about pleasing a bunch of mindless, brainless stooges, all of whom simply want to pay the price of a ticket to see a "bad guy" get his comeuppance. The fact that the "bad guys" have lost all credibility doesn't even register with them. Thus, the "brainless" designation. The WWE is built around two things: 1) beat up the bad guys, humiliate them and let the heels rejoice (whether they win or not is irrelevant), and 2) let Triple H run the show. That's it, folks.

The Osbournes - Sharon is a completely likeable person, but I see no point in having guest hosts (they did this with the Hollywood chicks a few weeks ago) bitch slap or beat up the wrestlers. Or, as mentioned above, have them be clueless as to who the big stars are. Makes no sense. But of course, I see where they are going. Do you see "faces" getting bitch slapped or beaten? Do you see them relegated to unknown status by the guest hosts? Nope. See above - the WWE is all about degrading the "heels" and pleasing a non-thinking audience. It was fun so many years ago when heels had a reign of terror. Not only is it something different, it makes for much more interesting programming.

7:05 AM  
Anonymous DW said...

Last night's Triple H Show was another two hours of loser programming - nothing more than another attempt for Triple H to be the star of the show. Why him? He should be just another character on the show - a wrestling program full of different personalities. But no - on every show, he makes an appearance as the one running things. Last night, while everybody was acting like a fool in the opening, and getting cut down, Triple H is the grand patron, shaking hands with the stars, offering advice, getting buddy-buddy, and even escorting them out of the ring. No reason for it. Why not let somebody else get a star turn at that sort of thing? Fine, if the script calls for somebody to do it - but why him? Answer: because this crap is all about him. When the dust settles, this aging loser wants to be able to find some kind of support - shaky, at best - to support his inevitable indoctrination into the Hall of Fame. Like I've said before, just canonize this bastard right now and let's get it over with.

On a positive note, I loved the way Chris Masters' bit totally confused Lawler. I'm sure it was meant to be humiliating and degrading, just like Santino and Chavo/Jillian, but Sharon's reaction leads me to believe there was a slight alteration of the script as it happened. Lawler looked totally confused when he pressed the button - he's not the best ad-libber in the world. Great stuff when a moment like that happens. Probably the only thing louder that Lawler's screeching "you like that??" was Triple H gnashing his teeth in the wings.

7:06 AM  
Blogger mcory said...

I was at the show. The "dark match" after RAW went off the air was Randy Orton coming to the ring and Cena, Michaels, and HHH hitting their finishers on him. Then Cena, HHH, and Michaels posed for 10 minutes. Cena brought his Dad into the ring and his Dad got a standing ovation. It was completely lame.

I was at an independent show a few months ago and Cena's Dad was a heel manager who got no reaction whatsoever from the crowd. It's funny how he can go from zero reaction to a standing ovation depending on the crowd.

The whole live RAW was pretty underwhelming for me. The wrestlers only played to the side with the cameras and the commercial breaks felt like they lasted forever. I liked the Sheamus segment was the best but the crowd was deathly silent during it. I was definitely in the minority because the crowd was hot all night and went wild for Ozzy and Cena. I'm surprised WWE doesn't come to Worcester more often. I heard that this was the first time in 9 years.

10:06 AM  
Anonymous DW said...

Thanks for that post-Raw update, mcory. It doesn't surprise me as that exact thing happens at almost every Raw show - after the show stops filming. It's frequently reported on in a "Non-Raw" post.

Same lame thing, Orton is subject to the finishers of Trips, HBK and Cena. How this keeps Orton as a serious threat - in fact, he's the only guy they turn to - boggles the mind. But - it must be because the fans - mostly idiots - are so easily manipulated. Case in point is how they are so easily convinced to cheer for Cena's father, when at house shows he can get almost no reaction. (I'm sure an element of it is also the touched up audio track for the TV audience.) But, most of the fans aren't looking for any competition anyway; they just want to see a heel beatdown. Somehow, this must placate their loser lives. I can't think of any other reason why the same old BS would entertain them.

On another point, here's an excerpt from the review from, of the "Raw's Got Talent" segment, by one of the WWE's stooges, Greg Adkins, who must write what was supposed to happen rather than what actually did happen:

"First up, Santino Marella did his best Ozzy and bit the head off of a 'Batman' doll. Next up, Chris Masters flexed his sizable pecs to the music of 'Crazy Train.' The final insult, though, arrived courtesy of Chavo Guerrero and Jillian, who massacred the Ozzy-Lita Ford duet 'Close My Eyes Forever.'"

I wouldn't call the audience's, nor the Osbourne's reaction to Masters as that befitting an "insulting" performance. No mention of the delight by the Osbournes, nor the non-judge Lawler, hitting the buzzer to stop the performance.

The WWE is so locked into their silly stories, that they can't even ad lib and make something new work. Bizarre, because almost all their stuff is crap, yet they want to keep using it.

7:34 AM  
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5:36 AM  
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8:56 PM  

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