BRM Reviews the 10/16/2017 Raw (stupid)

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Big Red Machine
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BRM Reviews the 10/16/2017 Raw (stupid)

Post by Big Red Machine » Oct 17th, '17, 16:42

OPENING SEGMENT- bad
Kurt Angle comes out to hype up The Shield’s match at TLC, at which point I realized that we’re six days away from the show and only have three matches announced (The Shield’s match Asuka vs. Emma, and the Women’s Title), and a reasonable idea of two more (Bray vs. Balor, Enzo vs. Kalisto), and then we have no hints about anything, unless they’re going to put The Drifter vs. Apollo Crews on a PPV. Maybe they’ll do Hardy & Jordan vs. Guns & Gallows? Even then that’s only seven, and I don’t think the Asuka match is going to go very long. Who is even left? Goldust? The non-injured Revival member? They could theoretically do Bayley vs. Sasha, but this would be a terrible time for it, considering the lack of build.
Anyway, before Kurt can say much of anything, The Shield interrupt him. Michael Cole and Booker T go completely gaga for The Shield’s entrance, like the fact that they’re doing it for the first time in three years is somehow significant or surprising even though everyone knew they would do it because they did their big reunion last week. Speaking of being a team, aren’t Seth & Dean the tag champs? Where are their belts?
They surrounded the ring like they were going to attack Kurt, even though they’re babyfaces and no one other than Kurt and the announcers actually thought they would do it. I guess they just did it to be dicks to Kurt. Kurt gives Roman the mic, and the first thing Roman does is tell Kurt that if he hadn’t given them the mic, they would have assaulted him. Total heels!
They cut a promo to build up the PPV match. Seth talked about how The Shield had “dominated” WWE from the moment they debuted, then mentioned that “one day The Shield went away,” completely glossing over how that whole thing was entirely his fault, just like a heel would. Dean then spoke and said that what he said last week about them being willing to fight four, five or six guys at once wasn’t a smart thing to say… but if given the chance to go back and do it again, he’d still make the same dumb mistake. What a moron.
Dean called out their four opponents for Sunday to have a brawl right now because he likes fighting. Kurt finally asserts himself and says that they need to save it for Sunday, threatening to cancel both tonight’s Strowman vs. Roman cage match main event and Sheamus & Cesaro’s tag title shot which they are apparently getting tonight for some reason if they instigate a fight. Kurt then promised that tonight’s Raw would “make history” and Cole said it was “shaping up to be one of the greatest Raws of all time.” That’s some pretty steep hype, and we have been given pretty much no reason to think that this show will even come close to that.

Braun Strowman will be a guest on MizTV. This will either be awesome or terrible, with no chance of it being anything in between.

ELIAS SAMPSON PLAYS HIS GUITAR WHILE GALLOWS & ANDERSON SIT NEXT TO HIM- Gallows & Anderson “warm up their vocal cords,” which consisted of them making funny noises. Then The Drifter played his guitar while Anderson sang the Honkytonk Man’s theme song. Then Elias suggested that they play the song they came up with “backstage a few weeks ago” about Jason Jordan. Sorry. I don’t buy that Gallows & Anderson hang out with The Drifter. No one should hang out with The Drifter. It goes against his character. Their song, which Elias claimed was “lyrically, one of my best” consisted of them calling Jason Jordan a nerd over and over again, although it was done to the tune of Kurt Angle’s theme song, which made it moderately funny.
Jason Jordan came out with Titus O’Neil and Apollo Crews because apparently they’re having a match now.

JASON JORDAN, APOLLO CREWS, & TITUS O’NEIL vs. “THE DRIFTER” ELIAS SAMPSON, LUKE GALLOWS, & KARL ANDERSON- 4/10
Babyfaces win a short match.

RENEE YOUNG INTERVIEWS EMMA- If you thought Emma’s obnoxious gimmick of taking credit for starting the abomination of BRANDING known as the “Women’s Revolution™” was annoying enough as is, now we’ve got Renee Young correcting her with the new, equally stupid, “Women’s Evolution™” catchphrase.
Emma complained that everyone is talking about Asuka even though she just beat four of the toughest women in the world. Then, just when I thought that this might actually turn out to be a good promo, she followed it up with “I am a social media superstar.”
Alexa Bliss! showed up to commiserate with Emma about Asuka not having actually done anything on the main roster yet. Alexa, being an excellent heel, gave Emma credit for her bullsh*t claim of starting the Women’s Revolution™. Yes, she said “revolution” and not only did she say it, but she glared at Renee while doing so, and Renee didn’t dare correct her because she knows not to open her mouth while the champ is talking. Alexa not only backed up Emma’s claim, but even thanked her for it, and put her over for being “a woman who will help building other women up instead of tearing them down,” and after this wonderful bit of heel hypocrisy, she completely steals Emma’s interview and makes it all about herself and her feud with Mickie James. She said that “last week Mickie body-shamed me by calling a biscuit-b… you know what? It doesn’t matter what she called me. The point is that Mickie is not a locker room leader.” Is Alexa not the best heel ever?
She then suggests that they, the younger Superstars, should stick together, and then suddenly has the idea that it would be great if Emma teamed with her tonight to face Mickie James a partner of Mickie’s choice “if Mickie can even find one. I wonder if Betty White is available.” Now I really want to see Betty White as a manager. Emma agrees to team with Alexa, meaning Alexa has completely manipulated the clueless Emma into doing her bidding. Alexa is the best. She managed to save a segment that started with someone taking credit for starting the Women’s Revolution™ and included a boast about being a “social media superstar.” Is there anything she can’t do?

CRUISERWEIGHT VIDEO PACKAGE- Apparently Jack Gallagher turned heel last month on 205 Live. This might well be the first we’ve ever heard of it on Raw even though Gallagher has appeared on the show multiple times since then. This video package was actually really great and this feud with Cedric Alexander vs. Gallagher & Kendrick seems like it has been really heated. You know… like the sort of thing that might actually convince someone to watch 205 Live if you told them about it.

CEDRIC ALEXANDER vs. JACK GALLAGHER (w/Brian Kendrick)- 4.25/10
Swann came out to be at ringside for Cedric, as they will apparently be facing Gallagher & Kendrick in a tag match at this Sunday’s PPV. Also, Enzo is apparently getting his rematch at the PPV. They had a short but decent brawl in which Cedric won clean despite Kendrick’s attempts to interfere, so why should I watch the PPV if I just saw the babyface get his revenge?

MIZ TV WITH SPECIAL GUEST BRAUN STROWMAN- bad
Bo is still injured, but Axel, Sheamus, & Cesaro are all out here with Miz. Cesaro & Sheamus cut a promo about tonight’s tag title match. Then they and Miz did their best with the absolutely atrocious dialogue they were given (or at the very least forced to steer towards) when they each had to describe how they were going to use one of the TLC implements to break a different body part of a different Shield member. It’s the sort of thing that wouldn’t have sounded anywhere near as bad if one person had said it instead of three people taking turns.
After a lot of talking, Braun finally came out and talked about how he would have destroyed The Shield on his own tonight, noting that he wants revenge on them for ganging up on him and triple-powerboming him through the announcers’ table last week. He says that none of them can beat him in a fair fight, and vows to destroy them all, one by one, starting with Roman Reigns tonight when Roman is going to be locked in a steel cage with Braun so that he can’t run away. What an awesome babyface promo this heel just cut.
By the way, do you know what would have gotten AMAZING heat? If the four of them had teased doing the Shield fist-bump of friendship, but then pulled their hands away and instead raised them up doing the Four Horsemen gesture.
Unfortunately that’s not an option anymore because Dean’s dumb mouth got them in trouble yet again, as Miz is now saying they’re going to have a FIFTH member of their team. Kurt comes out and interrupts, telling Miz that he is taking this too far. Kurt says “I agree to a fourth partner, but not a three-on-five.” Miz says “you don’t need to agree, Kurt! You heard Dean Ambrose. Dean said that they could take on any four or five guys.”
Um… yes, Kurt does still need to agree. He books the show. Thankfully Kurt put his foot down and pointed this out to Miz, but Miz kept arguing, saying that “words still matter,” which I guess means that he hasn’t heard an of Bray Wyatt’s promo (lucky bastard). He brings up Kurt Angle’s Three I’s, one of which is integrity. Kurt cut him off, saying “don’t even try to use the same argument as last week,” which came across to me as “I’m not dumb enough to fall for that again” (because otherwise there would be no reason for the argument not to hold true with week as well).
Miz keeps babbling on until Kurt cut’s him off, telling him that “this is how we’re going to settle it- like always do: in the ring. That’s how we do it on Raw.” Kurt then announces that if Braun beats Roman tonight, they get a fifth guy on their team, but if Roman wins, the match goes back to being three-on-three. Um… it’s a TLC Match. What’s to stop Braun or a hypothetical fifth man from running in even if Roman wins tonight? Then Kurt announces that during both of The Shield’s matches tonight, everybody is banned from ringside. You know… so that no one interferes in the CAGE MATCH.

SASHA BANKS vs. ALICIA FOX- 2.5/10
They showed a pre-taped promo from Fox where she claimed that what the referee thought was tapping out last week was really just scratching her nose. This was good, but it would have been better to have Fox come out in front of the live crowd to make this excuse, then have Sasha come to cut a promo telling Fox that she’ll make her tap out again right here tonight and then have Kurt come out to make the match official. Something to make it feel like we’re seeing things develop organically in front of us instead of things happening behind the scenes and WWE only informing us of them when they deem it necessary. Us getting to see something happen and see both women’s emotions in real time actually build up to it makes the match feel more important.
The match was short, but they did a good job telling the necessary story based around the Banks Statement, with Sasha going over clean to put the issue to rest.

ALICIA FOX JUMPS SASHA BANKS BACKSTAGE- great segment! Now we’ve got a match set up or the PPV, and they actually made Fox look dangerous, to boot.

ENZO AMORE PROMO- he claims that he got screwed out of the title, and he’s not wrong. Kalisto came out and cut a fine promo, to which Enzo responded with a very good one, and just when I was getting into this, they had a bunch of heel Cruiserweights (Nese, Gulak, Daivari, & Dar) run in and assault Kalisto for no reason. Enzo chanted “YOU DESERVE IT!” That was awesome. Meanwhile, no one came out to help Kalisto because apparently he has no friends.
Wait… here comes Mustafa Ali, who Corey Graves tells us is “bound by a mutual respect to Kalisto,” which seems like the sort of thing you should establish on-screen before you need to use it as a plot point. He beats up all four heels on his own, then gets taken out from behind by Enzo and receives his own beating like Kalisto did. Kalisto tried to get up, but he got beaten down, too. This would have been a good segment if they had actually established why these guys are working for Enzo this week when they all hated him last week. The obvious answer should be that Enzo is paying them a bunch of money… so why didn’t they just have Enzo say that while he was talking trash during the beat-down?

WWE RAW TAG TEAM TITLE MATCH: The Shield (Seth Rollins & Dean Ambrose)(c) vs. Sheamus & Cesaro- 7.25/10
They had some nice spots playing off of previous matches, but other than that this was nothing too special. Certainly not at the level of what we have seen from these teams over the past few months.

CURTIS AXEL, SHEAMUS, CESARO, & BRAUN STROWMAN BACKSTAGE- terrible.
Axel really wants to be the fifth guy. The PPV is even in his home town and he wants a big moment. He says he wants to fight Roman right now. Braun says “then go fight him.” Axel starts to chicken out, but then the others shame him into going to find Roman. I assume that this attack will be used to protect Roman so that Strowman can beat him, setting up even greater odds for The Shield to overcome at the PPV for no reason other than to bury more people at the expense of three guys who are already over.

FINN BALOR PROMO- Atrocious.
He started off by saying “When Bray Wyatt first introduced the world to Sister Abigail, I didn’t know what to think.” How about “I can’t believe I gave up a spot as New Japan’s top heel gaijin for this?” Or “didn’t these idiot bookers learn anything from the Orton vs. Wyatt disaster?”
Anyway, after seeing Sister Abigail, Balor now believes in ghosts. If you’re going to believe in the supernatural on a wrestling show, why didn’t Undertaker or Kane convince you to do so? Or Bray summoning lightning that one time?
He looks right into the camera and declares that at the PPV, his demon will slay the monster or some such bullsh*t. Then a magical camera effect happened and his face turned into what I can only describe as the end result of the Ultimate Warrior’s facepaint having sex with Chris Benoit’s tights. The camera effect happened and bunch of times and he switched back and forth with every stupid line they made him say (“My demon dreams about nightmares!”). Then he told Bray to run. Basically, they’ve now ruined Balor for me as well. I honestly cannot remember anything in wrestling as universally shat upon as all of Bray Wyatt’s magical bullsh*t during the Orton feud, and now these idiots are just doing it again. Are they that out of touch, or do they just not give a sh*t about their fans?

They announced that Fox has been fined a bunch of money for shoving a referee who was trying to break up her attack on Sasha. Booker asked “what about what she did to Sasha Banks?” and Cole said that Kurt would address that later on tonight. Hooray for logic and building things up! (It would later be announced that they are having a match on the TLC Kickoff Show.)

ALEXA BLISS! & EMMA vs. MICKIE JAMES & BAYLEY- 4.5/10
Mickie pinned Alexa, but I think it would have been a lot better to have Emma pin Bayley cleanly. Emma needs the build for her match with Asuka. Mickie already has plenty of babyface momentum heading into their match, so there is no reason for the champ to do a job when she doesn’t have to.

CURTIS AXEL SEES THE SHIELD HANGING OUT BACKSTAGE AND WALKS TOWARDS THEM- and then we cut to a commercial. What the f*ck?

MIZ, BRAUN, SHEAMUS, & CESARO BACKSTAGE- Cesaro & Sheamus laugh about the fact that Axel is probably getting his ass kicked. Miz leaves, apparently showing actual concern for his crony.

CHARLY CARUSO INTERVIEWS MICKIE JAMES- She asks Mickie if Sunday’s big grudge match at the PPV is really about the title so much as it is about proving Alexa wrong for calling Mickie old. Why can’t it be both?
Anyway, Mickie cut an awesome babyface promo without ever answering the question. While this promo was awesome, Charly’s question pretty much ignored the fact that Mickie pinned Alexa tonight and actually works better if she hadn’t pinned Alexa, so, again, why did you have Mickie pin Alexa?


MIZ IS LOOKING FOR CURTIS AXEL- he is found strung up on a forklift, dangling upside down. He was right near the ground so this wasn’t dangerous or anything, but it was incredibly stupid. I honestly couldn’t tell if this was supposed to make The Shield look like vicious, dangerous heels, or if it was supposed to be funny that Axel is a failure who got humiliated.

They’re now doing a “Payday ‘You Deserve It’ Moment” like the “Raw Rewinds” or whatever that they used to do. See what happens when you totally devalue a chant, WWE crowd? WWE decides to make it a thing, and thus it loses all meaning.

They’re officially billing this month’s Balor vs. Bray match as “The Demon vs. Sister Abigail.” Oh dear Lord.

RENEE YOUNG INTERVIEWS THE MIZ OVER CURTIS AXEL’S FALLEN BODY- Renee asks Miz if he thinks he’ll be able to find a fifth man if Braun wins tonight but Axel isn’t able to recover. I’d hope so. What wrestler wouldn’t want to compete in a PPV main event?
Unfortunately, what they had Miz say was just about the worst possible thing he could have said, which is that although he has a lot of respect for Curtis Axel, Axel was never going to be their fifth guy. There are many reasons that this was a bad thing to say. Most of them will only become relevant in hindsight, but the one that is relevant now- and one of the worst, actually- is that this all but gives away the result of the main event that they now want me to stick around and watch.

STEEL CAGE MATCH IN WHICH IF BRAUN WINS, HIS TEAM GETS AN ADDITIONAL MEMBER FOR THE MATCH AT TLC, BUT IF ROMAN WINS, BRAUN IS OUT OF THE MATCH AT TLC: Roman Reigns vs. Braun Strowman- 6.5/10 but oh my G-d this overbooking.
They attributed Big Show’s hip injury to Strowman throwing him through the cage. Good.
Corey Graves said the following: “Braun the kind of human being that if he fell into the bear enclosure at the zoo, you’d pray for the bear.” AWESOME!
Apparently when Kurt banned everyone from ringside before, that didn’t include someone coming out to do commentary. Well then why aren’t Sheamus, Cesaro, Seth and Dean all coming out to do commentary as well?
Unlike normal cage matches in WWE, for this particular match they’ve decided that you can’t win by going out the door. Yeah, this seems like bullsh*t. Roman tried to go over the top but Sheamus & Cesaro ran out to climb the cage and stop him. Shouldn’t this be a DQ or something? Kurt banned them from ringside, so shouldn’t them being here constitute an illegal action to aid Braun Strowman and thus Roman be declared the winner? I know they always say “there are no disqualifications in cage matches” but how else are you going to punish them for breaking the special additional rules that the GM set?
Seth & Dean came out to pull them down and they all brawled around ringside. Kurt Angle didn’t do sh*t about this. Not even send anyone down to get them away from ringside. They brawled into the elaborately set up display of tables, ladders and chairs all over the stage. Then went backstage and Miz followed them. So did the camera, even though there is a main event cage match with major implications for the main event of this Sunday’s PPV going on in the ring.
They brawled through a doorway into a loading bay, and Miz closed the door so they couldn’t get back in, I guess? Well… they could probably go around to a different door or something. This was stupid. We went almost two full minutes without seeing the ring, by the way.
More stuff happened for a while. I shouldn’t say it that way because Roman and Braun were actually having a really great match, except for the times when it would get strangled by the overbooking, and speaking of overbooking, we have, the finish:
Roman was about to hit the spear when Kane’s pyro happened, distracting Roman so Braun could smash him. Roman quickly recovered and hit the spear anyway, but this time was distracted by Kane coming out of the ring to stop him from pinning Braun. That’s right. They had to make sure Roman had the match won three different times before they could let Braun beat him after a long two-on-one beat-down.
Now let’s look at some of the issues with this:
1. They had Kurt specifically ban everyone from ringside, then flagrantly ignored that stipulation.
2. They ignored that stip so they could do the brawl and have Miz lock Seth & Dean outside, except that, with the finish they did plus the door stip, plus Cesaro, Sheamus, and Miz all fighting them, they wouldn’t have been able to help anyway
3. Or, if you’re going to lock them outside and you want to protect Roman so badly, why did you have the “can’t go through the door” stip, which pretty much forced Roman to be pinned when Braun could have just walked out of the cage while Kane subdued Roman?
4. Kane is a Smackdown Superstar. Why is he allowed to be on Raw?
5. Miz’s earlier “Axel was never going to be our fifth guy” comment makes it clear that this was their evil plan all along. How did Miz know that Kane was going to be on Raw, but nobody else did? You’d think that if he got traded or signed from Smackdown to Raw that everyone would know about it, right?
6. Seeing as how this was their evil plan all along, why didn’t Kane pop out through the ring the moment after the match started?
7. How did this plan even come about? Did Kane pick up his telephone and call Miz up or send him an e-mail saying “hey, Miz, I’m going to be evil again and I’m coming to Raw and want to help you beat up The Shield?” Does that not sound out of character to anyone else?

So it’s going to be five-on-three now and well still know that The Shield are going to win, so as I said above, all they’re doing is finding one more person to make look like an idiot for the sake of a group that is already mega-over.


So yeah, a really bad episode of Raw despite there being some nice little things going on, a great tag title match, and yet another awesome babyface Mickie James promo. If only that all hadn’t been completely drowned out by the enormous pile of stupid they caked onto the build to their PPV main event. So much for "one fo the greatest Raws of all time," huh?


Hold #712: ARM BAR!

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Serujuunin
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Re: BRM Reviews the 10/16/2017 Raw (stupid)

Post by Serujuunin » Oct 17th, '17, 17:38

I’m actually really sad about what they’re doing with Balor. I want to be excited to see him on TV, but they make him say the stupidest shit.

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