Monday, February 13, 2012

WWE Raw Report

Date: 02/14/12 from San Diego, CA.

The Big News: At last, a show for true connoisseurs of unintentional comedy. Also, masochists.

Show Analysis:

The show started with Kane backstage saying that he will do anything to get John Cena to embrace the hate. He added that by the end of the show, Cena will embrace the hate and someone will take a ride in an ambulance.

We then went to a debate with the wrestlers in the Raw chamber. John Laurinaitis interrupted CM Punk at the onset to thank the WWE board of directors for their support and leave. Punk said the debate wouldn’t end in violence. He suggested that a lot of people assume Laurinaitis has something over the board, but really Laurinaitis has just done a lot of begging. Punk said he will win because he is the best wrestler in the world.

Dolph Ziggler said he is a better wrestler than Punk. He took a shot at R. Truth, saying Truth doesn’t know what state they are in. Truth said that if he is elected, he will trade Ziggler and Vickie Guerrero to Smackdown. Truth continued with an extended version of his minstrel show comedy act. Miz again pointed out he was in the main event of Mania last year and ran down the others. Kofi Kingston said he has been overlooked for too long but that will change at the chamber.

Jericho finally said that he has been in more chambers than anyone and eliminated more wrestlers in chamber matches than anyone. He said he is coming to reclaim Punk’s title. Punk took a shot at him finishing 7th on Dancing with the Stars. Ziggler said this segment was a joke and waste of time. Truth did more minstrel. Jericho got in Punk’s face and Kingston gave Jericho trouble in paradise to mercifully end this segment.

This segment was thoroughly irritating from beginning to end. It was that goofy, annoying WWE atmosphere that takes the edge off everything and actively makes you much less interested in seeing the match. Everyone except Kingston came off so obnoxious. This description probably doesn’t even read that bad, but as far as making me want to change the channel and never order another pay-per-view, this was really bad.

Chris Jericho beat Kofi Kingston. Jericho worked over Kingston briefly. Kingston came back with dropkicks but his springboard attempted was countered into the walls. Kingston got to the ropes. Jericho argued with the referee and Kingston hit trouble in paradise for two. Kingston covered but Jericho got his foot on the ropes. After a sloppy struggle and gouge to the eyes, Jericho hit the code breaker for the pin.

Shawn Michaels arrived and hugged HHH backstage. Elsewhere, Zack Ryder was in Cena’s locker room with a wheel chair, neck brace and flowers. He looked completely preposterous. Ryder said he needed to tell Eve Torres how he feels about her. Cena pointed out that whenever Ryder shows up, Kane murders him. Cena told Ryder to stay in the locker room while Cena went to get Eve. In John Laurinaitis’ office, David Otunga pointed out Laurinaitis isn’t permanent GM yet. Otunga has a plan for Laurinaitis to be permanent GM of Raw and Smackdown.

Randy Orton beat Big Show via DQ. Daniel Bryan watched from ringside. Show threw Orton on the announce table. Coming back in, Orton kicked Show in the head and hit a draping DDT on Show from the top rope. That was a cool spot. Orton went for the RKO but they botched it. Show went down but Orton didn’t, so it was like Show gave himself the move and sold it. There were audible “you fucked up” chants. So Orton went for it again and this time hit it. Bryan then ran in to hit Orton with the belt for the DQ. Bryan hit Show with it as well. This was an okay match with a terrible finish both in concept and execution.

Shawn Michaels came out. It seemed like he was losing his voice and was a bit off. Michaels pointed out it is WrestleMania season and you can’t have WrestleMania without Mr. WrestleMania. Michaels said he was waiting last week for HHH to accept Undertaker’s challenge, so when HHH didn’t, he called Laurinaitis and said he needed to talk to HHH. Umm, the story was Laurinaitis proposed Michaels’ return two weeks ago to the board of directors before HHH refused Taker’s challenge. Michaels said that he thought about it a few days and realized HHH was just baiting Taker. So he called out HHH to come say he would be ending the streak.

HHH joined Michaels and said it was great to see him. HHH said it would be nice to see Michaels more often, a sentiment I’m sure all fans would agree with. However, HHH said he won’t face Taker at Mania. He reiterated that he would have to end Taker to beat him and he isn’t willing to do that. HHH said he isn’t that guy any more. Michaels said that’s exactly who he is, ending careers and showing no mercy or compassion.

Michaels asked if HHH is just a suit now, whether he married that chick and became one of them. He wondered if HHH is a corporate sellout. HHH said he isn’t selling out, but investing in the future. Michaels responded that when someone challenges him and he backs down that makes him a coward. HHH said Michaels doesn’t understand. Michaels is on the ranch without any worries while HHH has responsibilities. The company is going to be his and that responsibility weighs a ton on his shoulders.

HHH asserted Taker isn’t just an opponent. Taker is a brand that is good for business and letting that brand end is bad for business. HHH said that HHH, Michaels and Taker are the end of an era. Their style doesn’t exist and they left it all in the ring every night. HHH said he won’t be the one to end that era because Taker’s all that is left. HHH said he won’t do it for his ego or for Michaels’ ego, doing what Michaels couldn’t.

Michaels said that speech works on a lot of people, but it wouldn’t work on him. Michaels told HHH to look him in the eye and say he doesn’t want to end the streak, say no. HHH looked in Michaels’ eyes and said no. Michaels was taken aback and left. They then played another Taker video. Taker again was calling for the match and they showed him cutting his hair.

R. Truth beat Dolph Ziggler. Ziggler worked over Truth for a while. He was doing sit-ups when Truth rolled him up for the win. I don’t get why Ziggler keeps losing. He ought to be the hottest rising star in the company and they just job him out week in and week out.

Santino and Zack Ryder did brief comedy backstage. Then Tamina pinned Brie Bella with a Samoan drop and superfly splash.

Backstage, a crying Eve Torres walked into an ambulance and Kane shut the doors. I’m not sure if they shot this with the wrong angle or what, but it seemed as if she just randomly decided to walk into the ambulance rather than being chased or coerced. Kane closed the door. Cena attacked Kane. Kane got away and went to drive off with Eve in the back, but Eve just opened the back door and jumped out into Cena’s arms. She then kissed Cena. Of course, Ryder was right there sitting in his wheelchair with the flowers, shocked and upset. Coming back from the break, Eve told Ryder she was sorry and wanted them to be friends. Ryder made an angry face and rolled away for comedy.

CM Punk beat Miz. Miz went for his neck breaker/back breaker combination but Punk cut him off with a head kick. Punk followed with a powerslam and top rope elbow. He went for GTS but Miz escaped and went for the skull crushing finale. Punk got out of that and applied the anaconda vise for the submission.

Raw concluded with an epic final segment. Cena came out and apologized to Ryder. He said Kane’s plan was to turn Cena’s friends against him and the fans against him. Cena tried to act like the crowd was booing him because of this goofy angle. But Cena vowed that this plan wouldn’t work! The crowd chanted “we all hate you.” Cena said that they don’t get that he rises above the hate. He told people to go on thinking he’s weak, as if that’s the central criticism people have of him. He said he will adapt, overcome, and win against Kane and Rock.

Zack Ryder wheeled himself out and then came down to the ring on crutches. He was selling in this comedic manner and making angry facial expressions. Ryder slapped Cena. Cena took off his shirt. As Ryder and Cena were having their big confrontation, the crowd began loudly chanting “throw it back” to the person who caught Cena’s shirt. Ryder went to hit Cena. Cena caught it and shoved Ryder down. A dejected Ryder went to leave on his crutches.

Kane appeared on the screen and said Cena took the true love of his only friend. Kane said that Cena will leave Sunday in an ambulance. Then for good measure he came out and pushed Ryder off the stage in his wheelchair. Why not? Cena freaked out over Ryder’s 80th demise and ran about looking for help. He did the X sign and stood by Ryder as fans heckled him and one person cried. Then Eve Torres came out and everybody booed. And that was that. I hope Ryder is okay.

Final Thoughts:

Who would order Elimination Chamber after watching this show?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would. Elimination Chamber matches are fun.

10:02 PM  
Anonymous Napoleon Solo said...

This show was truly dreadful in it's concept and execution. The debate was stupid, and seemed to go on for an hour. Just seeing the chamber lineup seems like a joke. Besides Punk, who in their even merits a title shot? Miz always loses, Kofi was a tag team guy, Truth only ever beats Miz, Ziggler is being buried for reasons I can't fathom ( I agree with Todd, he deserves to be so much more but they just won't do it ), and even Jericho hasn't really done anything since he's been back. I have no interest in the match.
It was clever to have Taker cut his hair, since the man is wearing a wig. At least they actually showed why, when he returns, he'll be bald. I recommend that Kane get an appointment at Taker's barbershop next.
I actually howled with laughter at all of the Cena/Ryder/Kane/Eve stuff. All of it. I don't think I understand one second of what they were trying to accomplish. I don't blame Cena for kissing Eve back, as she's quite lovely, but I was so busy laughing at the idiocy of the whole thing, that I really didn't know what was going on. I think once I saw Kane run out at the end to push Kenny off the ramp and kill him again, I may have actually hurt myself laughing. Is there anyone in the company who has any idea what this is all meant to lead to? A heel Eve? A feud with Ryder? Does Ryder rise like Lazarus to screw Cena vs. the Rock?
I would recommend that, when they are driving Kane away in the back of the ambulance at the Chamber, that they just keep driving all the way to Orlando. I think it's time for Mr. Jacobs to feud with Abyss or something for gimmick infringment. They have nothing left for him in Stamford.
This was really awful. Even the Bryan/Orton/Show thing didn't make any sense, and that's been one of the better storylines. Why did DB clock Orton? Just out of boredom?
If so, I can't really blame him.

10:05 PM  
Anonymous Malcolm Quartz said...

It's shows like this that make me look forward to listening to Dave and Bryan discuss them tomorrow. It's the highlight of my day.

10:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Count me in as someone who will order Elimination Chamber. Chamber matches are always fun to watch, and I wanna see the Kane vs Cena match.

I thought Kanes promo was awesome. Since Rock and Cena probably wont get to physical before Mania, I could see Cena get taken out on Sunday and miss a few weeks of Raw to sell the injury.

Martin Martin Martin. After all these years and all these blogs, you just never seem to enjoy Raw do you?

Napoleon get your own blog dude. No reason we have to read two Raw reviews from Martin. Seems like your doing a poor audition to get over with the Negative Nancys of the pro wrestling world.

"I howled with laughter"

Really? You actually howled when you laughed? Like a wolf or something?

All you people who think your so mature and sophisticated and above WWE, then either stop watching or embrace the E.

Whats the matter? You guys who trash the show every week cant find something else to fill the void if you stop watching?

I will never understand, unless its clearly explained to me, why miserable wrestling fans trash a show and product they dont enjoy, yet keep coming back for me every single week.

Oh and Malcom, will it make you feel better if Dave and Bryan trash the show too? Would you feel comfortable knowing other people hated the show? Its that Misery loves company mentality is what it is.

Who is dumb enough to pay for the Misery loves company though? I'll listen to their free crap, but I'll be damned if Im gonna pay to listen too these clowns trash a show I enjoy.

I wonder how many people will continue to subscribe to that site if the host keep saying how terrible the shows are.

Hey Napoleon, you wanna "HOWL" with laughter, go watch Impact every Thursday, its a real hoot.

I cant wait until Wrestlemania breaks all kinds of records this year for the biggest Match of all time, John Cena vs The Rock, and all you sad sacks will be left feeling unfulfilled because you just dont enjoy the product anymore.

11:42 PM  
Anonymous Bob said...

Todd, the reason Eve just casually walked into the ambulance is that they were setting up the scene and weren't supposed to be on the air yet. After she got into position, the camera panned to Kane, who was calmly looking at someone that was mostly offscreen for the signal to start. You then could see that person's arm giving the signal, and Kane turned around and started acting.

So either they did this segment live and were off with the timing, or, if it was a pretape, they started it at the wrong spot.

3:14 AM  
Anonymous Negative Nellie said...

This 'Anonymous' guy who writes in to defend this show with these unbelievably long-winded and stupid comments has to be a rib, yes? Are any of the Levesque-McMahon babies internet savvy yet? Because otherwise this guy must have a brain the size of a pea.
I could barely get past the first paragraph. 'I really enjoyed Kanes promo'.
I howled with laughter at this.
I'm guessing you're also the kind of guy who gets really excited to read the weekly 'Raw Fact' about how WWE has more Twitter followers than the entire country of Peru, and runs to yell you're mom about it afterwards.

3:48 AM  
Blogger hobbyfan said...

As I've said all along, the Cena-Kane angle would work better if the two combatants wrote the script themselves. Unfortunately, it's quite clear they had little or no input at all from what I could tell, and you'd think Kane, of all people, could've come up with something better than what the gang of idiots concocted. It has to end on Sunday, and then, they can build up Cena-Rock for the next 6 Raws leading to Wrestlemania.

Let's face it. We can trust Kane to be a little smarter.

The debate was a trainwreck waiting to happen, but what saved it was R-Truth going off on a tangent. He forgets that the Ziggy & Piggy Show was bounced from Smackdown a year ago because they ambushed Teddy Long and took over the show for a month.

The resolution of that angle was botched, too, oh, by the way, and now they want to do another let's-get-Teddy-off-Smackdown angle so soon? I'm sorry, but Johnny Space Ace has to go. He got a stay of execution, but as the saying goes, a man's grasp often exceeds his reach, and now he's making the same mistake Vickie made. Will they never learn?

Fire the current crop of writers, let the agents put the show together, with input from the talent, and Raw will be much better.

HHH/HBK was good, but it took too long. Gee, what a shock. I'm waiting for them to use Glen Campbell's "Ghost on the Canvas", a great song, for UT this time, since the license for Johnny Cash's "Ain't No Grave" expired.

Where was Brodus Clay to save us from this drek? Who did he piss off to get knocked off the show?

Punk-Miz was fine but too short. Truth beating Ziggy was unexpected and fun. Jericho needed a win going into the PPV, and got a good match from Kofi. I see that Tamina is now billed as Tamina Snuka. Like that'll help her on Sunday vs. Beth. Glamazon is holding the divas belt for Kharma. 'Nuff said.

5:59 AM  
Anonymous Steve Khan said...

I would much rather watch the Kane-Cena-Zack stuff than any R-Truth promo.

12:28 PM  
Anonymous Hyatte said...

So Todd, what are the chances that Eve is in on Kane's plan? Diva Heel turn anyone? She did have a small smile for a second after Ryder took his tumble. Bad acting or brilliant, subtle, foreshadowing?

8:37 PM  

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