BRM Reviews the 7/25/2016 Raw (HOLY CRAP!)

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Big Red Machine
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BRM Reviews the 7/25/2016 Raw (HOLY CRAP!)

Post by Big Red Machine » Jul 26th, '16, 02:31

New theme song, new opening video, new announce team, and a new broadcast position (well… not so much new as where it was back in 2003, but it’s new for now).

OPENING SEGMENT- not confidence-inspiring.
Steph and Foley are in the ring. Foley asks the whole roster to come out on stage, so they do. Steph blames Roman for losing the WWE World Heavyweight Title for all of them. She calls Roman a loser… and everyone cheers.
Steph says that Raw has never not had a heavyweight champion before, therefore we need to have one. This completely misses point: Dean Ambrose beat Seth Rollins clean in the middle of the ring on Smackdown and beat Roman Reigns clean in the middle of the ring at Battleground. Dean is the rightful champion and he is the top champion in the WWE and there is no debating that. This title will not be a big deal just because they say it will. At least when they created the World Heavyweight Title after the first brand split, they had Bischoff award to the guy who had previously been #1 contender, so they could claim that Brock signing to be exclusive to Smackdown was in essence refusing to fight Triple H and thus Brock should forfeit the title to Hunter. Here they’re just making a title for sake of making a title.
What they are going to do is have two Fatal Four-Way matches tonight with the winners facing off in tonight’s main event… and the winner of that match faces Seth Rollins for the title at Summer Slam. Why does Seth get a bye straight to the finals? Because he was the #1 draft pick, that’s why. If you wanted to give Rollins a bye to the finals, why did you have him lose clean to Ambrose on Smackdown? You could have done the double pin finish on Raw and then used the fact that Dean pinned Roman and not Seth at the PPV to at least give some sort of plausible argument for why Seth would get a bye to the finals… but no. Seth gets a bye to the finals because Steph and Foley decided to pick him first, and the results of those two world title matches on TV last week didn’t mean a thing.
Also… I can’t help but notice they are doing the first two rounds of this tournament tonight… and then they’re going to give us three or four weeks of the winner interacting with Rollins in various likely repetitive ways until we get the finals at SummerSlam. In other words, the same thing that failed so miserably in the build-up to Money in the Bank (and I suspect that we’ll also be getting Rollins vs. Reigns again here). To this I ask… why not spread this little tournament out of over three weeks so that you can really build it up, get three main events out of it, set things up that we don’t have to suffer through three weeks of Rollins doing commentary on his opponent’s matches, saying the same thing each time?
They have decided to call their new title by the utterly horrific name of the “WWE Universal Championship.”
The eight guys who will be in the first-round matches tonight are:
Sami Zayn
Chris Jericho
Sheamus
Rusev
Balor
So far so good…

Cesaro- lost is last match clean, and cut a promo burying Raw and saying he wants to be on the other show.
Owens- lost his last match clean in what we were told was supposed to be a very important match.
Roman Reigns- lost his last TWO matches clean, both of which were world title matches, and Steph has made it clear that she blames him for the WWE World Heavyweight Title staying on Smackdown.


Steph then calls Charlotte forward, making sure to declare that the Womens’ Title is “of equal importance.” Well then maybe we could change its name to “WWE World Women’s Title?” Foley announces that she will defend the title tonight against Sasha.

Steph tells them the men to get ready because the first of the Fatal Four-Way matches is next… but she never says who is in it, so as we go to commercial, ALL OF THEM start to head to the back.

WWE UNIVERSAL TITLE TOURNAMENT FIRST-ROUND MATCH: Cesaro vs. Rusev vs. Kevin Owens vs. Finn Balor- 8.25/10
Cole ran down a list of Balor’s accomplishments in New Japan, all of which contained the word “junior.” Not the best first impression for someone who hasn’t seen Balor before. Throwing Balor out here first thing with no introduction to him at all for the non-NXT-watching fan was a big mistake. It was a pretty awesome debut in the ring, though. Balor pins the US Champion, so at the very least he’ll be getting a US Title shot out of this, if not a shot at the WWE Universal Title.

NIA JAX vs. BRITT BAKER- great squash.
I really liked the spot where Nia had it won but pulled Baker up at two. It added a bit of personality to her in her debut.

SASHA BANKS & GOLDEN TRUTH BACKSTAGE- stupid.

TOM PHILLIPS INTERVIEWS SASHA BANKS- Great promo, aside from the part where they made her shoehorn in the phrase “women’s revolution.” When will they learn that their stupid buzzword catchphrases don’t work?

WWE UNIVERSAL TITLE TOURNAMENT FIRST-ROUND MATCH: Sami Zayn vs. Roman Reigns vs. Sheamus vs. Chris Jericho- 8.5/10
They set Roman up to be the babyface here by having all three other guys gang up on him in the beginning… but instead of booing, the people cheer Roman getting his ass kicked. Then Sheamus and Jericho teamed up to go after Sami, and the people cheered for Sami defeating them. Then Roman came in attacked Sami and everyone booed.
Well… this match was even better than the last one.
Cole referred to Owens vs. Zayn as a “Match of the Year Candidate,” which I’m certain was on Vince’s list of no-no terms.

RANDOM VIDEO PACKAGE FOR HBK VS. FLAIR FROM WrestleMania XXVIII- random.

NEW DAY CELEBRATION- Last night these guys lost cleanly… and tonight they’re out here putting themselves over for having been champions for so long. What a bunch of heels! So they play this video package about them being champions for so long… and I don’t think I saw one solitary clip of them even competing in any wrestling matches.
Then they grabbed a plant from the audience and told one joke which they beat over and over, long past the point when it was dead. I popped huge when Gallows and Anderson came out to save me from this nightmare.

Did they take the announcers’ chairs away?

ADRIAN NEVILLE vs. CURTIS AXEL- 3/10
Axel is such a joke that he was OFFICIALLY INTRODUCED by JoJo as “Raw’s Mr. Irrelevant” (because he was picked last in the draft. That is just such a completely unnecessary burial that you might as well just release the guy. Byron Saxton, idiot that he is, tried to spin this as positive, declaring it to be a “badge of honor,” and that point the REAL Corey Graves made his Raw debut, pouncing on Byron and absolutely savaging him for his stupidity, saying “says the man who was picked last at everything in his life.”
This match should have just been a squash.

DARREN YOUNG & BOB BACKLUND BACKSTAGE- a good segment except for the part where Golden Truth showed up playing Pokemon Go.

FINN BALOR VIDEO PACKAGE- good

TOM PHILLIPS INTERIEWS CHARLOTTE- good promo

WWE WOMEN’S TITLE MATCH: Charlotte(c) (w/Dana Brooke) vs. Sasha Banks- 8.5/10
That Eddie Guerrero spot to get Dana ejected from ringside was one of my favorite things I’ve seen all year. It looked like Sasha landed right on her forehead on that dive, but she seems fine. Fantastic babyface stuff by Sasha all throughout the match, and a great story with Charlotte working the leg and Sasha working the back. A huge moment, and an awesome post-match promo by Sasha as well.

BYRON SAXTON INTERVIEWS A JOBBER WHO IS ABOUT TO DIE- the jobber says that “a match on Raw is a dream” and it’s totally worth it to face Braun Strowman… and yet the whole time he kept a look of utter fear on his face. GREAT!

BRAUN STROWMAN vs. JAMES ELLSWORTH- fine squash.
Strowman’s new music fits him perfectly.

ROMAN REIGNS VIDEO PACKAGE- fine.

COLIN CASSADY & ENZO AMORE vs. THE SHINING STARS- DUD!
Enzo & Cass win when the Shining Stars are distracted by R-Truth and Goldust wandering into the ring, looking for Pokemon.

ROMAN & BALOR BACKSTAGE- pointless. Also, it kind of made Balor look like a douche.

WWE UNIVERSAL TITLE TOURNAMENT SEMIFINAL MATCH: Finn Balor vs. Roman Reigns- 7.25/10
Wow. THAT is how you get a guy over on his first night. ROLLINS VS. BALOR AT SUMMER SLAM!

ROMAN REIGNS PROMO- perfect for what it was, both putting Balor over and building to a rematch.

A surprisingly spectacular Raw! Hopefully the long matches we saw here are the way the show will be booked from now on.


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Re: BRM Reviews the 7/25/2016 Raw (HOLY CRAP!)

Post by KILLdozer » Jul 26th, '16, 07:07

That's your "HOLY CRAP!"

I expected debuts, returns, swerves and heel turns!
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Re: BRM Reviews the 7/25/2016 Raw (HOLY CRAP!)

Post by Big Red Machine » Jul 26th, '16, 07:50

KILLdozer wrote:That's your "HOLY CRAP!"

I expected debuts, returns, swerves and heel turns!
It was more of a "holy crap I didn't expect the show to be so great."
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Re: BRM Reviews the 7/25/2016 Raw (HOLY CRAP!)

Post by XIV » Jul 26th, '16, 11:32

I did not expect Balor to win the night. He looks ridiculously strong going towards Summerslam now.

Sasha Banks said "Women's Wrestling". And "Match of the Year" was also said.

A couple of decent squashes, Braun and Jax looking brutal.

Commentary was very solid tonight. Corey Graves is the future voice of the WWE he was doing most of the play-by-play and dos it very well.

Banks vs Charlotte psychology was great. The sort of payoff I'd have preferred at Summerslam that whole growing frustrations and the "you will never beat me" follow by the win shortly after with Charlotte crying to the back. PPV worthy.
"While you're looking at Bop, I'll hit you with Bang. You day see that coming"

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Re: BRM Reviews the 7/25/2016 Raw (HOLY CRAP!)

Post by Big Red Machine » Jul 26th, '16, 12:27

XIV wrote:
Banks vs Charlotte psychology was great. The sort of payoff I'd have preferred at Summerslam that whole growing frustrations and the "you will never beat me" follow by the win shortly after with Charlotte crying to the back. PPV worthy.
I actually really liked that they did the title switch here. When they first announced the match I was certain we were going to get a DQ or a count-out or whatever here in order to stall the feud until SummerSlam and we'd have to sit through yet another month of Sasha making Dana tap every week while nothing really moves forward, which I was already sick and tired of. I knew I would also continue to get annoyed every time they mentioned how long Charlotte had been champ for, seeing as how she hadn't defended the belt on two straight PPVs. Changing the belt here not only got over the whole "new era" thing, but it gave me my big happy babyface moment is this feud before I got sick and tired of waiting for it.
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Re: BRM Reviews the 7/25/2016 Raw (HOLY CRAP!)

Post by KILLdozer » Jul 26th, '16, 13:20

How did no one else notice the insane Kevin Owens look-alike in the crowd when they were announcing Balor in the tournament?

Also "Cesaro's got a chip on his shoulder..."

Oh, so that's with the wildly patterned tape...
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Re: BRM Reviews the 7/25/2016 Raw (HOLY CRAP!)

Post by KILLdozer » Jul 26th, '16, 13:26

That stomp to Rusev was right in the crotch btw...
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Re: BRM Reviews the 7/25/2016 Raw (HOLY CRAP!)

Post by KILLdozer » Jul 26th, '16, 13:42

Cole's terminology still sucks. Roman Reigns slams Zayn with a Belly To Back Sideslam , then he says he "Spiked him". Maybe I'm just being particular , but no Cole. That was a plant, or a drop. He didn't DDT or Piledrive him.

Just, certain idiomatic ways of describing the look and or feel or certain moves, that's he's obviously gotten no better at still.
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Re: BRM Reviews the 7/25/2016 Raw (HOLY CRAP!)

Post by KILLdozer » Jul 26th, '16, 14:28

"Sami Zayn just hangs around and gives you a false sense of comfort..."

Well that couldn't sound any worse if they tried!

Y'all motha fuckers NEED comedy!

"A great show, a great show, I'm high off adrenaline."

Fuck y'all that was hilarious.

Go stayed hyped off of adrenaline then.
Last edited by KILLdozer on Jul 27th, '16, 07:38, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: BRM Reviews the 7/25/2016 Raw (HOLY CRAP!)

Post by Serujuunin » Jul 26th, '16, 20:20

This RAW actually left me on an adrenaline high afterwards it was so exciting. And I popped like a huge mark for Balor, though that segment with Roman did make him look arrogant.

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Re: BRM Reviews the 7/25/2016 Raw (HOLY CRAP!)

Post by Big Red Machine » Jul 26th, '16, 22:08

Serujuunin wrote:This RAW actually left me on an adrenaline high afterwards it was so exciting.
I know, right! I don't remember the last time I felt this way watching Raw- or main roster WWE in general. This was a reminder of why it is that we all watch WWE every week even when it has consistently been so crappy: Because when it's great and the product feels hot and exciting, there is no better feeling than knowing that we're going to get so many hours of this great programing each week.
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Re: BRM Reviews the 7/25/2016 Raw (HOLY CRAP!)

Post by Serujuunin » Jul 26th, '16, 22:59

Big Red Machine wrote:
Serujuunin wrote:This RAW actually left me on an adrenaline high afterwards it was so exciting.
I know, right! I don't remember the last time I felt this way watching Raw- or main roster WWE in general. This was a reminder of why it is that we all watch WWE every week even when it has consistently been so crappy: Because when it's great and the product feels hot and exciting, there is no better feeling than knowing that we're going to get so many hours of this great programing each week.
I will do you one better and say I haven't even felt this way following a PPV. And when they were listing the draftees I realized just how strong the roster actually is, and I actually felt, for the first time in a long time, passionate about wrestling!

Now I'm waiting for next week's RAW to shut me down right back to where I used to be haha

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Re: BRM Reviews the 7/25/2016 Raw (HOLY CRAP!)

Post by KILLdozer » Jul 27th, '16, 07:40

Serujuunin wrote:This RAW actually left me on an adrenaline high afterwards it was so exciting. And I popped like a huge mark for Balor, though that segment with Roman did make him look arrogant.
You're high now... weird .

I'm actually clean though for real now a days and that's just not going to be changing at any time , and it feels amazing . So don't start ;)
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