Yes Yes Yes? The Raw Review
by, 04-18-2012 at 05:09 AM (2108 Views)
Epic doesn’t begin to describe this week’s Raw. I’ll admit that a lot of the reason for my reaction is that I was there, and can safely say that the crowd on Monday evening (we got it first America, muhahaha! Lol) made a hell of a case for the hosting of a future WrestleMania at Wembley Stadium. Also, the “what?” chant seems to have died out in favour of “yes!” chants – they filled The O2 for the three-plus hours and Daniel Bryan easily got the biggest pop of the night. On that note, I love that the LeBell Lock is now the Yes Lock. So, shall we get on with the review?
Punk retains via a Randy Savage tribute/CM Drunk
In an arena filled with “CM Punk” and “Sexual Chocolate” chants for the opening contest, Punk retained his WWE title with an extreme variation on Randy Savage’s elbow drop. Whilst neither of the No DQ matches from Monday night (Cena/Tensai was very minimal in using the rules also) really saw much weaponry, Punk used the chair in a pretty cool way. Other than this, the match itself was pretty good. It wasn’t quite main event championship material (hence it opening Raw), but it got the crowd into it, and led well into the funny promo between Punk and Jericho.
We found out that the two will meet (no surprise there) in what is being dubbed a Chicago Street Fight for the WWE Championship at Extreme Rules. I can only imagine this will simply be a Street Fight, but will be good nonetheless. Jericho will likely take a huge deal of punishment, and we could get the polar opposite of the technically sound match we got at WrestleMania – at least they’re mixing it up a bit, rather than giving us basic rematches, at this year’s Extreme Rules.
Coooooooobra! Santino retains against the oiled up Adonis, David Otunga
Surprisingly, this was a decent match. I expected a near-squash with Santino escaping with the title due to a mistake by Otunga. What we actually got was a good technical match and a crowd-pleasing ending. I was disappointed at the lack of unison in the “Coooooobra!” shout, but overall it was a good enough segment for Raw. I expect the title to change hands at Extreme Rules in an impromptu match though.
The reason I titled this part the way I did was because Lesnar wasn’t actually at Raw. For someone who left WWE on a terrible match in 2004, you’d imagine he owes the fans outside of the US at least a physical appearance; apparently not.
The video package, on the other hand, was actually pretty good. I like how they’re taking this feud in a different direction to Cena/Rock. Maybe an Extreme Rules match is a bit premature though? I mean, this will be Lesnar’s first match back in WWE, and allowing anything to go down this early makes me think they will have Cena bury Lesnar and end this feud in a stupidly short time period. This has the potential to go for at least three months, and if they do decide to end it so soon it’d be foolish on WWE’s part – it is the second-biggest feud in WWE at the moment after all (I maintain that Jericho/Punk is better television).
Ryder Squashed; Yes! Yes! Yes!
Finally WWE have the common sense to bury the walking joke that is Zack Ryder, and restore some of the credibility which Kane lost last week. I was doubly happy since I didn’t pay money to see Ryder in person without having the chance to throw blunt objects at him (I wasn’t close enough to the ring unfortunately). The promo Kane gave after destroying Ryder confirmed that Kane/Orton is going to continue to bore the living crap out of me, and I was more impressed by how good Kane’s pyro looks in person as opposed to the any of the content within the segment.
Cena shows up, gets screwed
Before I look at the promo Cena cut, I feel like I need to point out two things;
1) Cena gets a mixed reaction because the older fans love to stir the pot – they cheer ironically (somehow that thought never crossed my mind before), and
2) CM Punk is not a liar, Johnny Ace really is impossible to hear on the microphone.
The promo itself was nothing short of a great moment for the crowd to try and show up Miami. It didn’t offer anything which we didn’t know would be said (we know Cena will try and get aggressive with Lesnar, it doesn’t need to be said at this point), and we knew that Ace would put Cena in a situation to fail. Whilst it was good to be there in person for, on TV it was not something I would have, or did, care about.
Introducing the Yes! Yes! Yes! Lock
Easily the match and pop of the night, Kofi Kingston versus Daniel Bryan was a short and sweet technically sound match, and it got the crowd involved too. The fact that Bryan is more over than CM Punk at this point in time was a key factor in what made this match great, as well as the renaming of the LeBell Lock to the Yes Lock. It was expected, but the build-up to the Bryan victory was a great experience, and I just hope WWE have realised that Bryan is a great antihero before they turn him into a baby face again. It’ll be interesting to see where WWE takes Bryan heading into Extreme Rules.
Brodus wins, Ziggler losing credibility
I don’t get why, after months of hype, WWE has decided that Dolph Ziggler cannot contend with Brodus Clay for more than thirty seconds? Dolph is a proven occasional main-eventer, and I think he needs to escape the Bermuda triangle of Vickie and Swagger before he becomes irrelevant.
Other than that, Clay’s entrance is awesome live and Vickie is just as annoying.
AW watches on… apparently
I’ll be honest, I didn’t see AW at the top of ramp for this entire segment. I spent most of the match wondering why Big Show and Khali were teaming together, and why Khali was even featured on the rare occurrence that WWE comes to the UK. It was nothing more than a match made for the crowd to cheer the Big Show, and it delivered in that respect. The match itself was the second time-waster of the night, and the fact that AW’s presence was not made more clear to the live crowd (I don’t recall him appearing on the big screen, either) solidified that fact.
Contract signing next week
Not much to say on this, other than I hope we get an F-5 through a table. The best part of this rivalry so far is that Lesnar is destroying Cena physically.
Don’t let the fact that the London crowd were calling Tensai “Allllllllbert…” all the way through this match deter you; this wasn’t a bad match. What makes it better is that it was a surprise to see the man once known as the A-Train (I loved that name on him, by the way) beat Cena in a Raw main event. Like I said earlier, it wasn’t much of an Extreme Rules match, but it’s expected that they would play it down with the PPV coming up. Cena looked genuinely blinded at the end of the match too, and needed help to walk around the dismantled steps. It was a moment of uncertainty about how real the injury was.
I apologise for the long blog entry, and that it is a late one at that, but I hope you enjoyed reading it. I’d easily give this Raw a Yes! Yes! Yes! because I got to see it live. Watching it back on TV I did see some drop off from previous weeks, but when they say there is nothing like the live experience, they’re right.
Follow me on Twitter (@ComingToCinemas) for more WWE views and sarcasms.