Yes! Yes! Yes! The Raw Review (#YYYTRR)
by, 08-07-2012 at 09:01 AM (3223 Views)
The difference between a face and a heel when you’re an older fan is often the opposite of what the WWE considers to be its ‘universe’ sees as a face and a heel, and tonight was a prime example of the audience being split between who the bad guy really was.
Back when I was a kid the heel was the guy whose ideals I didn’t agree with, or the guy who decided to take a dislike to somebody I liked, or aligned themselves with an already established heel. It’s the reason I saw Stone Cold as a heel for much of 2001, and the reason I then subsequently booed The Rock when he returned for his final match against the Rattlesnake at WrestleMania. Tonight the face/heel dilemma showed both my age (granted I’m only 22, but it’s older than the initial demo of WWE), and how infuriating I now find John Cena’s presence in a WWE ring.
On top of that we’ve now got Daniel Bryan being wasted at SummerSlam, the imminent return of a bearded Wade Barrett, and Chris Jericho using Tout in a productive way. Also, the ending to Raw was actually pretty good, and we got some good matches (let’s just ignore the waste of time known as Kelly Kelly when reading that statement).
Is CM Punk really the heel?
I mentioned my reasons for seeing superstars as heels in my opening gambit, and this is the reason why – CM Punk.
I’m sure I’m not alone in this, since Punk has entered arenas to vast cheers for the past two weeks, and it is human nature to choose a stance on other people based on their own values. My point is that CM Punk is not the heel in the rivalry between himself and John Cena, Cena is.
If you ignore the fact that Punk, last week, decided to break his character and bitch and moan about having to defend his title in a Triple Threat, for the most part he was simply telling the truth – the WWE Champion should indeed be in the main event. Last week I was also convinced that Punk would make good on this heel turn by actually turning me against him, but this week he more than redeemed himself and I firmly stand by his claims.
The reason why is simple – John Cena claimed Punk has to earn respect. After using his weight in the back to solidify PPV main events for the past seven months this is just a ridiculous thing to say (I’m convinced Cena doesn’t even know what he says at times). In my eyes, CM Punk has been the highlight of pretty much every PPV since becoming WWE Champion, whilst Cena has simply waltzed into the main event without having a single interesting rivalry (discounting his match with The Rock, which was actually pretty good – although Jericho and Punk stole the show at WrestleMania).
Punk is, in my eyes, still the face between the two. I can see why Punk has become a bitching champion and rather than boo him for it I opt to cheer him. CM Punk has merely snapped and had enough of being ousted from what should be his main event spot by now.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, John Cena is quickly becoming irrelevant in today’s WWE. He’s done everything he possibly can whilst still representing the PG demographic in a product which is slowly turning away from PG, and needs to step down and let the extremely relevant CM Punk take his rightful place headlining PPVs.
Should I rename this blog No! No! No! The Raw Review?
Whilst I think the new t-shirt looks awful, Daniel Bryan has struck onto something potentially golden. It is no surprise that by not wanting the Yes! chants to continue they are going to become stronger, but it is the fact that this is helping Bryan to become a crazed madman that could be golden. He has months of crazy activity from AJ and losses to CM Punk to draw from to make it believable, and it could eventually turn Bryan into the next WWE Champion if WWE doesn’t drop the ball with it.
My only reservation about Bryan’s role last night is that he was put into a SummerSlam match with Kane. I don’t get where this match has come from? There is no rivalry to speak of anymore between the two, and unless Bryan snaps and destroys Kane the match serves no real purpose. That just makes AJ’s matchmaking for SummerSlam 0-2 in my eyes (I don’t like the Triple Threat either).
In other news…
RAWactive match, CM Punk def. Rey Mysterio – I really didn’t pay that much attention to the quality of this match, but I’m sure it was good based on their history. The outcome was predictable, however. And why is Punk in the opening match?
Wade Barrett promo – I’m looking forward to the return of the Barrett Barrage, and his new beard. I just hope the Wasteland has been replaced with a new finisher.
Alberto Del Rio def. Christian, Sheamus borrowed his Ferrari – So much for not competing until SummerSlam, Bertie. A decent match, but having to cheat to beat Christian in a build to facing Sheamus seems slightly backward to me.
Randy Orton vs. Big Show ended in a double count out – I actually enjoyed this match despite Show’s inclusion. I’m not entirely sure what WWE plans to do with Orton at SummerSlam, considering the WHC match is already set up and he has no business with anyone else.
Ryback def. Tyler Reks & Curt Hawkins – This actually wasn’t a terrible match, despite one poorly executed flip over the top rope. It’s good to see Ryback taking some damage now, but he can’t keep this random feud with Reks and Hawkins up for much longer.
Primo & Epico def. The Prime Time Players – Whilst their matches are good, the severe lack of tag teams in WWE is painfully clear. You have Tag Team Champions who would be better served as singles competitors, and two great teams who will eventually be a part of a quiet PPV match due to being overused on Raw. Promos are there for a reason…
Damien Sandow attacked Brodus Clay before their match could start – I personally loved this. I’m sick of Clay and his grooming antics, and Sandow could go over in my books if he puts an end to Clay in this RTC-like rampage of his. I can just imagine Brodus saying “If grooming children is wrong, then I don’t wanna be right!” in a Bubba Ray Dudley-esque way after the racism and rape jokes of last week.
Kelly Kelly def. Eve – So many things are wrong with this. Why did Eve lose to Kelly? Why was Layla not included in this match? And why are WWE still trying to convince us all that Kelly can actually hold up the divas division?
Shawn Michaels’ ‘big’ announcement – Triple H having HBK in his corner at SummerSlam is hardly news. The moment HBK appeared on Raw with no reason other than Raw being in San Antonio we knew it had something to do with the insomniac’s dream that is Lesnar versus Triple H. I honestly couldn’t care less that HBK is involved in this.
Alex Riley def. Dolph Ziggler – I didn’t pay too much attention to the match since Jericho’s commentary was brilliant (haven’t heard Y2J call Michael Cole Mitchell in years, lol), but I liked that Jericho made productive use of Tout to cost Ziggler against A-Ry. I just hope this SummerSlam match happens.
Kane def. The Miz – This match should have gone the other way. Kane gains nothing from pinning the new ruthless Miz, whilst Miz would have gained momentum.
John Cena def. Daniel Bryan – It was a great main event up until Cena inexplicably won… again. Cena has become infuriating to watch these days, simply because he represents everything that CM Punk is trying to usher into WWE – great wrestlers. Whilst a Bryan win would have made no sense right now, Cena could have done more than reverse a kick to get the pin. It’s not like he can’t wrestle a good match, he just won’t.
For what it’s worth, I enjoyed Raw. The matches were mainly good, the main event was great, and the ending somehow shocked me.
I just wish WWE had stuck to their policy of not involving the divas in Raw (the past two weeks were great without them…), but I can get over it. I can also get over wasting Bryan at SummerSlam provided the match is good and Bryan snaps on Kane. I just hope that Punk’s actions of the last few weeks lead to Cena actually being ousted from the main event, rather than Cena coming out on top again.
The last thing WWE needs is John Cena as WWE Champion again. It is counterproductive and boring, in my eyes.
Thanks for reading, and for more of my (apparently) anti-Cena comments follow me on Twitter (@SpringerAJ) and tweet me with #YYYTRR.