BRM Reviews the 2/5/2018 Raw (different)

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Big Red Machine
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BRM Reviews the 2/5/2018 Raw (different)

Post by Big Red Machine » Feb 6th, '18, 15:40

BRAY WYATT PROMO- He starts off by reminding us that one year ago he was the WWE World Heavyweight Champion. Taken in light of that comment, you could read everything Bray says about Roman here (losing titles, being a failure, barely recognizable as what he once was) as actually applying to Bray himself. Then he said that he was waiting at the bottom of the spiral of failure that Roman is currently in. That made me laugh.

ROMAN REIGNS PROMO- Good, aside from that one line about how his journey to WrestleMania “smashes into Suplex City at WrestleMania.” Why do they insist on making their wrestlers say such goofy sh*t?
But hey! We’ve got wrestlers actually looking into the camera and cutting their promos like this is an actual wrestling show!

ELIMINATION CHAMBER QUALIFYING MATCH: Bray Wyatt vs. Roman Reigns- 7.25/10
I was in a good mood from those promos… until Cole said “and the fireflies are out.” Can we please not say them same sh*t every single time something happens? The match put me in a better mood, though. Roman won a very good slugfest.

POST-MATCH SEGMENT- Matt Hardy lays Bray out with a Twist of Fate after the match.

ROLLINS & JORDAN BACKSTAGE- They finally seem united as a team, and just in time for their last chance at the titles.

REVIVAL PROMO- when I saw that this was a singles match pitting one Revival guy against Balor, my immediate thought was “this is bullsh*t.” The Revival apparently had the same thought, so they asked Finn to make it a tag match instead. Finn agreed… and the match was changed, just like that, without any necessary authorization from an authority figure.

THE REVIVAL vs. FINN BALOR & KARL ANDERSON (w/Luke Gallows)- 5/10
Revival lose. BOOOO! Can you imagine who great these guys would be working the New Japan/ROH/PWG/RevPro circuit? What a sickening waste.

SASHA BANKS WATCHES FOOTAGE OF HER LOSS TO ASUKA LAST WEEK- EXCELLENT
She’s seated and watching the footage on an iPad. We are looking over her shoulder so we can’t see her face… until it’s necessary for to do so, which is when Sasha rolls her head in frustration and disgust at her lost- because with is only these emotions that we actually need to see, because the point of this segment is to show us that Sasha’s loss is weighing heavily upon her. Then Bayley shows up and she sits down in a chair next to Sasha’s, positioned in such a way that their conversation is natural. Compare this to the way WWE usually does things, where they would be forced to stand in in a way that is so unnatural that the only way it makes sense is if they are purposely trying to position their bodies to be seen by cameras that we are repeatedly told we are just supposed to pretend aren’t there.
Sasha says she thinks she knows how to beat Asuka now, so Bayley says “well I’m facing Asuka tonight so how about you tell me?” and Sasha shays she’d rather keep it to herself. So Bayley says, “I get it. The Elimination Chamber is every woman for herself… just like the Royal Rumble was,” to which Sasha responds “I did what I had to do.” These two then proceeded to have actual friendly-but-in-reality-not-so-friendly banter that sounded perfectly natural. Did Kevin Dunn quit over the weekend or something?

CEDRIC ALEXANDER & MUSTAFA ALI vs. TONY NESE & DREW GULAK- 4.75/10
Drake Maverick was on commentary, and Michael Cole made a point of telling us that he used to be Rockstar Spud. Why? Why are they going against years of their own practice… and for the sake of a nobody? If it was, like Christopher Daniels or the Young Bucks or someone like that they I could maybe understand doing it, or if it was a Japanese wrestlers where the fan base generally doesn’t react well to name changes without an explanation… but why the hell are they doing it with SPUD?
The babyfaces won when Cedric pinned Gulak.

KURT ANGLE REVEALS WHO WILL CHALLENGE FOR THE WWE RAW WOMENS’ TITLE INSIDE THE ELIMINATION CHAMBER-
So the men have to earn their way in by winning qualifying matches, but the women just get in by being named by Kurt. That makes the match seem a lot lamer than the men’s match right away. Alexa Bliss! will be defending against Mickie James, Sasha Banks, Bayley, Sonya Deville, and Mandy Rose. Yes, Sonya and Mandy are getting title shots over Nia Jax. Nia will face Asuka at the PPV, and if she wins, she will be added to the title match at WrestleMania. Why does Nia have to win a match to get a title shot when the others don’t?
Alexa Bliss! comes out and says that this is totally unfair… and she’s not wrong. In fact. She argues that if men and women are supposed to be equal in the WWE then making her defend her title in the Elimination Chamber when Brock doesn’t have to defend his title in the men’s version is gender discrimination. Kurt fires back that Brock defended his title at the Royal Rumble while Alexa hasn’t defended hers since October, to which Alexa responds “well whose fault is that, Kurt?”
Kurt works his way out of this by letting the fans decide if Alexa should defend her belt, and of course they say yes. Alexa should have responded by asking them if they wanted it see Brock defend his title in the Elimination Chamber, but instead she walked away. Both of them (and particularly Alexa) played their roles well, but this was as situation that never should have been brought up in the first place.

JOHN CENA PHONE PROMO- snore.

BLACK HISTORY MONTH VIDEO PACKAGE- I did not come here for a lesson on basic history that most Americans already know. And, quite frankly, being lectured about racial sensitive by WWE is… well… one of the dudes lecturing me in the video package is the son of a dude whose gimmick was that he was a savage from the jungles of an island in the Pacific Ocean. They should just stick to those biographical pieces they’ve been doing on African-American wrestlers for the past few years.

ASUKA vs. BAYLEY- 6.5/10
This should have gotten more time. Asuka is back to using the armbar. She offers Bayley a handshake and Bayley accepts it.

SHEAMUS & CESARO PHONO PROMO- not bad, but it would have been a million times better if it wasn’t shot from a shaky phone-camera.

MIZ PROMO- good

ELIMINATION CHAMBER QUALIFYING MATCH: Apollo Crews (w/Titus O’Neil & Dana Brooke) vs. The Miz (w/The Miz-Tourage)- 5.5/10
Miz wins.

KURT, JASON JORDAN, & SETH ROLLINS BACKSTAGE- it turns out Jason Jordan is too hurt to go so Roman Reigns will be substituting for him. Um… why don’t they just postpone the match, to either give Jordan a chance to get better or to make it so that Roman doesn’t have to wrestle twice in one night (and so Cesaro & Sheamus have time to prepare for the combination they will be facing)?

WWE RAW WORLD TAG TEAM TITLE MATCH: Sheamus & Cesaro(c) vs. The Shield (Seth Rollins & Roman Reigns)- 6.75/10
Roman was the babyface in peril because he’s already wrestled tonight. Rollins got knocked off the apron but Jason Jordan came out (in his gear, for some reason) to provide moral support and help Seth get up on the apron to receive the hot tag. At a later point he distracted Cesaro to allow Rollins to get a roll-up for a nearfall. In his defense, he did this right after Sheamus had poked Rollins in the eye, which is actual cheating as opposed to just a distraction, which, while not clean, isn’t actually cheating (and especially if you don’t hop up on the apron or something like that). Roman yelled at Jason Jordan for this, which annoyed me because I’m certain Roman has been happy to benefit from such things in the past, so him being angry at Jason here really just felt lie it was happening because the plot demanded it.
Roman ordered Jason to the back, but he didn’t go. Rollins then hit his big stuff and The Shield were calling for the powerbomb on Cesaro but Sheamus pulled him out of the ring. Then they grabbed their belts and went to walk out of the match. Jason Jordan tried to block them but Cesaro threw a punch at him… so Jason blocked it and threw one back… and the referee called for the DQ. This was a well-constructed DQ. It flowed naturally, and was done in a way that feels like it is adding to the story rather than just stalling things by a week or making it so that no one has to lose.

BRAUN STROWMAN PHONE PROMO- an excellent promo that would have been better if the damn camera wasn’t shaking the whole time.

JASON JORDAN, SETH ROLLINS, & KURT ANGLE BACKSTAGE- Seth was a big jerk here. I guess you could say it’s Jason’s fault that they lost, but they still wouldn’t have won the belts in count-out win, and if this was their last chance then it’s really all the same.
Kurt also yells at Jason and orders him to stay home until he is medically cleared to wrestle, which isn’t a bad idea.

NIA JAX vs. A JOBBER- squash
I don’t think the jobber even got a name. Cole just kept calling her “this young lady.”

RENEE YOUNG INTERVIEWS NIA JAX- She cut a very good promo, but she only looked at the WrestleMania sign instead of pointing at it, so if she was slated to win at Elimination Chamber, I’m sure that has been changed to a loss because we all know you can’t put someone in a big WrestleMania match if they can’t remember to point at the sign.

MICKIE JAMES vs. SONYA DEVILLE (Mandy Rose & Paige)- 3.5/10
Mickie pulls an acceptable match out of Sonya (for the time they were given), and even gets the win despite the distraction from Mandy.

POST-MATCH SEGMENT- Femolition beats Mickie down but Alexa Bliss! pulls Mickie to safety. I assume that the angle here is that Alexa is trying to form an alliance to help her in the Elimination Chamber match, but someone who already knows not to trust her seems like a poor place to start. Then again, even if Mickie is watching out for the inevitable betrayal, Alexa is still better off during all of the time the deal is still intact than she otherwise would have been, so why not try it? I guess I’m really more just ambivalent that they are giving us yet another story with Alexa where she recruits someone else to help her and we’re all supposed to sit here and wait for the inevitable turn. That’s basically all they did with her for most of 2017.

The final chamber spot will be filled next week in a match between four guys who have already lost qualifiers (Balor, Bray, Matt, and Crews. I guess Kane is still injured).

THE DRIFTER SINGS- good heat and a decent promo

WINNER GETS TO ENTER THE ELIMINATION CHAMBER LAST: Braun Strowman vs. John Cena vs. “The Drifter” Elias Sampson- 4.75/10
I like the idea of the match, but it seems unfair that the other three guys in the Elimination Chamber won’t get the same chance.
Cena and The Drifter used a bunch of weapons and stuff to team up on Braun and take him out. The Drifter then attacked Cena and beat him down for a while until Cena made his comeback. Braun came back and took out Cena but then Elias knocked Braun out of the ring and got the pin on Cena. Then Braun came right back and took out Elias. He went to leave and the crowd booed so he went back to beat up Cena and they cheered. Then he hit Elias with another powerslam just because.
Then it seemed like the show was supposed to end but it didn’t and Braun did a babyface posing routine before beating Cena and Elias up some more. Then he left and the show went off the air.

This wasn’t really a good episode of Raw, per se, but it was a promising one. The way they did the interviews and backstage segments (aside from the phone crap) felt more like a real wrestling show, we had a lot less GM stuff than usual, and the booking was all decently logical. Maybe it’s the start of them moving in a better direction? (Probably not, but I’m willing to be cautiously optimistic.)


Hold #712: ARM BAR!

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KILLdozer
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Re: BRM Reviews the 2/5/2018 Raw (different)

Post by KILLdozer » Feb 6th, '18, 18:45

Cole was somehow worse than usual at times.

One of the first things he said was the stupid cliche "Awhhh maaaaaaaaannnnn that guy's thinking what have I gotta do to beat this guy, what have I gotta do to KEEP THIS GUY DOWN?!?"

He said Wyatt was thinking that after Reigns kicked out while Wyatt's doing his idiot crazy laughing thing.

Yeah-because that's what he was thinking, obviously.
When they come, they'll come at what you love.

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