BRM Reviews the 1/18/2021 Raw (HORRIBLE! And this time, there might actually be consequences)

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Big Red Machine
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BRM Reviews the 1/18/2021 Raw (HORRIBLE! And this time, there might actually be consequences)

Post by Big Red Machine » Jan 19th, '21, 23:42

RANDY ORTON PROMO- GREAT!
To try to sell the burns, they had him in a dark area with makeup on his burnt parts and a Lucha mask hiding the rest. It worked pretty well. Randy cut a LONG promo, but it built very well. The key point here was that he enjoys the pain, and if getting his face burned off can’t stop him, then what can possibly stop him from winning the Royal Rumble.

The announcers plugged that Goldberg will be a guest on MizTV later tonight and tell us that it’s “can’t miss.”
Also, Alexa Bliss! will be facing Asuka in what I believe will be her first match since fully coming under The Fiend’s influence. Could we maybe get some sort of explanation for why she was on TV every week for months but wasn’t booked, and now she’s suddenly getting booked?

EARLIER TODAY, CHARLY CARUSO INTERVIEWS LACEY EVANS & RIC FLAIR ARRIVING AT THE BUILDING TOGETHER- good
Lacey insists that she is just learning from Ric. She insults Charlotte in front of Ric and Ric doesn’t care.

PEYTON ROYCE vs. CHARLOTTE FLAIR- 2.75/10
Peyton jumped Charlotte in the aisle but Charlotte fought her off on her own… and, of course, we went right to a commercial break right after that. They do this sort of stuff so much that it just feels like a thing someone booked because there was a commercial coming rather than anything organic. At least have the announcers pretend the cut to commercial is unplanned by saying “we’re going to take a commercial break while we restore order before this match” or something like that.
This was not good. In the ring it was sloppy at times, and the match seemed designed to make Peyton look like sh*t. Charlotte chops the ringpost, but Charlotte is soon in control again (and the chopping the ringpost wasn’t sold for the rest of the match). Ric and Lacey come out to cause a distraction and Charlotte gets booted in the head… but she’s back in control within a few minutes (and most of that time was a commercial). How does it help this tag title feud to make Peyton look like total sh*t? And if you’re not building to a tag title match here, why did you take the belts off of Nia and Shayna?
After the bell rang Charlotte kept the hold on for f*cking forever, to the point where not getting DQed for excessive punishment was ridiculous. This referee was just flailing around waving his arms “no” and not figuring out that that wasn’t going to work after the first fifteen times like some sort of New Japan referee.
Byron Saxton pushed the idea that “this is all part of an effort by Lacey Evans to get into the head of Charlotte Flair.” I guess that works, but Ric’s clearly willful costing Charlotte matches makes me think that he’s got to be getting something out of this, too. He’s Ric Flair! He’s not going to get strung along. The idea that this is actually exactly what it appears to be and Lacey is trading Ric services as a manager in exchange for sex (like I said, it has to be something big for Ric to screw Charlotte out of matches) makes a lot more sense to me.

MATT RIDDLE ANNOYS THE HURT BUSINESS BACKSTAGE- bad
Sure, Riddle was trying to be nice by complementing them, but he was SOOOO F*CKING ANNOYING. And as we would learn in this segment, he’s not even high. He’s just that annoying normally! Eventually Lashley set him up and then stomped on his foot in a way that Lashley come across as clever and cool. Riddle then made a coherent threat, which, in my experience dealing with annoying high people, they are generally unable to do (so, again, Riddle was just being annoying and completely unaware of how annoying he is while totally sober).

MATT RIDDLE & LUCHA HOUSE PARTY BACKSTAGE- bad
Lincé Dorado is worried that Riddle won’t be able to wrestle. Riddle told an annoying story in order to assure Lincé that he would be fine.

MUSTAFA ALI PROMO FROM EARLIER TODAY- TREMENDOUS!
This feud with Kofi is a wonderful idea, but f*cking Retribution being involved is going to make it impossible for most people to care.

XAVIER WOODS vs. MACE (w/Retribution)- 4.75/10
Ali got into the ring and yelled at Woods before the match, so Wood punched him. That’s how I knew a commercial was about to start. They told something of a story with the size disparity. Mace won after Woods was distracted by the other members of Retribution.
After the match, Retribution surrounded Woods. Based on Ali’s earlier promo, you’d think they would try to injure him or maybe humiliate him in some way to get at Kofi, but they didn’t do anything. That was weird.

SARAH SCHREIBER INTERVIEWS ASUKA- bad
Sarah asks Asuka “you’ve been invited into Alexa Bliss!’s Playground. What do you expect?”
This is pro wrestling. The fact that they told someone to ask that question should have been a gut check moment where they realized that things have gotten horribly off track.
Then things got worse. Asuka said “I don’t know.” Then they cut to a replay of Alexa burning Rnady that Asuka had no way of knowing about, and yet Asuka still paused to let it happen. Then Asuka said another line, which I couldn’t understand. JUST DO THE F*CKING REPLAY BEFORE THE INTERVIEW! IT’S NOT THAT F*CKING HARD!

ALEXA BLISS!’S PLAYGROUND WITH SPECIAL GUEST ASUKA- terrible
More dumb Fiend bullsh*t. I’d love to see the rating for the main event after this.

SARAH SCHREIBER INTERVIEWS THE MIZ & JOHN MORRISON- bad
Sarah’s question was “what’s in story for Goldberg on the Dirt Sheet tonight.” They plugged their show in an annoying way while (perfectly reasonably) telling her to wait and see. As they were leaving Morrison said that “controversy creates cash.” For later, keep that comment as well as the question Sarah was scripted to ask in mind.

NIA JAX & SHAYNA BASZLER PROMO- Baszler cut a great promo about wining the Royal Rumble, then Jax started to bicker with her. They’re not the tag champs anymore, so why are these two still hanging out if they obviously don’t get along?

JEFF JARRETT MAKES A PREDICT FOR GOLDBERG VS. MCINTYRE- He talked for too long so I fast forwarded past his answer.

SHAYNA BASZLER vs. MANDY ROSE (w/Dana Brooke)- 4.25/10
This match was pretty good for the time it got. Mandy’s arm got worked over. Mandy had very good babyface fire. Shayna won clean with the Kirafuta Clutch.
Nia Jax was on commentary, and she gave something of an answer to my above question, which was that they don’t have to get along to be successful together. That’s fine… but why are you hanging out together backstage if you don’t get along? That wasn’t a strategy session. It was Shayna cutting a promo.
Byron Saxton asked Nia what she would do if the Royal Rumble came down to just her and Baszler. What a f*cking stupid question. That might be the single dumbest question Byron has ever asked, and that covers a lot of ground.

POST-MATCH SEGMENT- bad
Nia and Shayna bickered for no reason. For equally no reason, Dana Brooke- ostensibly a babyface- ran over and attacked them.

CHARLY CARUSO INTERRUPTS SHAYNA & NIA’S BICKERING IN ORDER TO INTERVIEW THEM- good… except for one problem
They point out that the tag champs are each dealing with their own issues. Shayna suggests they get their automatic rematch. Sound logic, except for the fact that there are no more automatic rematches in WWE. Remember that time OVER TWO YEARS AGO the McMahons all came on TV and told us things would change and get better? Well the only f*cking change they made (aside from a few random call-ups) was saying that there would no longer be automatic rematches.
Anyway, these two finally seemed on the same page to me, but apparently not to Byron Saxton. I don’t know how he possibly could have watched that segment and thought that Nia didn’t want to get a rematch for the tag titles, but somehow he did.

SARAH SCHREIBER INTERVIEWS CHARLOTTE FLAIR- bad
She asks Charlotte to “describe how uncomfortable it was to see Lacey Evans in your father’s robe.”
They made a big deal out of this before, too, but I don’t get it. Charlotte accused Lacey of trying to get attention off of Ric’s name. Maybe… but it’s not like Lacey was having trouble getting attention before this, either. She was on TV pretty regularly in December.
The part of this that was really a problem for me, though, was Charlotte saying that she has been “learning from the dirtiest player in the game my entire life and I’ve never gone down that road.” Excuse me? You’ve been a cheating heel plenty of times! How did Sarah not challenge this statement? Or the announcers?!

AJ STYLES, ADAM PEARCE, & RICOCHET- fine
AJ was good. Ricochet… came off more naturally than he usually does, but the material he wasn’t given wasn’t very good, and he botched his big line by flipping some words around. Tom Phillips then also screwed up.
Ricochet made his entrance, then we inexplicably went backstage to that AJ Styles could threaten Adam Pearce with Omos, just in case you didn’t get enough of Pearce getting bullied on Smackdown. And then, of course, we went to a f*cking commercial on this pointless note that only existed to give us a cliffhanger going into a commercial when it’s not even a real cliffhanger because it’s not going be relevant to anything that happens when we come back from the commercial.

Oh my G-d. Tom Phillips just clarified for me what Ricochet and Pearce were talking about, and now I’m furious. Pearce told Ricochet that he should use this match to “prove that he is worthy” of being in the Royal Rumble. This would be the same Royal Rumble in which they seemingly give spots away to any old fart who shows up at the building with their gear, and which total jobbers who have done absolutely nothing in their careers like Dana Brooke can just declare that they want to be in the match and they’re automatically in. But now all of a sudden f*cking RICOCHET has to prove his worth?

RICOCHET vs. AJ STYLES (w/Omos)- 7.25/10
This was a great match with a really cool finish. I was also shocked that they let AJ win clean.

THE DIRT SHEET WITH SPECIAL GUEST “GOLDBERG”- In terms of actual consequences, this might be the worst thing they’ve done in a while.
I’ll cut to the chase: It was Gillberg. This sort of thing happens so often with Goldberg that I don’t think it actually gets heat with anyone anymore, but the real problem here was the way WWE hyped this up. They had graphics, they had Sarah’s question earlier, they had a Tweet and several big plugs by the announcers.
Usually when a heel does this sort of thing, the company doesn’t actually hype it up. The heel comes out and says that Goldberg (or whichever babyface will be parodied) will be the guest on their talk show, and then they bring out the impersonator. Or, if the company has hyped it up, they make sure that you still get what was advertised by having the babyface come out and beat everyone up. That didn’t happen here, either.
WWE’s ratings are struggling… and they thought it was a good idea to false advertise a huge name? Are you f*cking kidding me? And to d it the week after you advertised a huge main event only to f*ck the fans out of it (and don’t give me that “well Drew was sick” crap. They would have done the same finish with Drew instead of Hunter)? Yeah, you might pop a rating this week, but how many of those people are not going to come back for a long time because you falsely advertised something they wanted to see? Controversy doesn’t create cash when the only side of the story is that you’re screwing your customers.
The announcers also tried to defend the company preemptively with their “I should have known” and “this was too good to be true” lines, and both of those are bullsh*t. Why is it too good to be true that Goldberg would do a talk show segment when he’s in a world title program? And why should you have known? Because no one saw Goldberg backstage even though he was advertised? Then I guess the people running this company completely stupid for hyping this thing up when there were clues that it might not actually be happening.
(Oh. Also, there was a parody Drew. It doesn’t matter. Even if the false advertising wasn’t a problem, this would still have sucked).

MATT RIDDLE & LUCHA HOUSE PARTY vs. THE HURT BUSINESS (w/MVP)- 6.25/10
In terms of the physical performance, this was fine, but the booking here was horrible. Cedric and Shelton couldn’t get a long at all… but even with this big disadvantage, the Hurt Business dominated and won. Riddle’s foot- injured earlier and taped up for this match- was not an issue at all. Riddle attacked Lashley from behind after the match. This would have felt a lot more justifiable if he had seemed to be in any sort of pain from Lashley stomping on his foot earlier. It’s also the second time tonight we’ve had the heel win clean and then the babyface attack the heel after the match.

THE DRIFTER & JAXSON RYKER BACKSTAGE- whatever
Right before this, they played a recap a what these guys did last week. That is a crazy coincidence that these guys were about to have this unscripted conversation right after the people in the truck played a recap of important information to understand their conversation. It took me ten seconds to come up with the idea of having these guys be watching a monitor backstage and thus the recap prompts their discussion. Can we please put at least SOME thought into making this not feel totally fake?

DREW MCINTYRE PROMO- GREAT!

JEFF HARDY vs. JAXSON RYKER (w/“The Drifter” Elias Sampson)- 3/10
This was very good for the time it got, but the time it got was only 3:10. In that time, we were already supposed to think that Jeff had Jaxson Ryker beat (so much for him as any sort of threat) when Elias pushed Jeff off the top rope for the DQ.
Elias and Ryker argued, so they’re already teasing breaking those two up. Jeff got up and attacked them, taking out Elias but being felled by Ryker.

They’ve announced that both Drew and Goldberg will be on the show next week. Anyone remember forty minutes ago when they advertised that Goldberg would be on the show this week but it turned out he wasn’t?

ALEXA BLISS! vs. ASUKA- 4.5/10
Yes, 4.5/10 is the compromise I’m going with. I don’t think you can argue that they told the story they wanted to tell very well. The problem is that the story is very stupid. One of Alexa’s new magical Fiend powers is that she can change clothes in an instant… but only when the camera isn’t looking at her.


Her outfit changes give her different superpowers or something like that. One of them made her pretty much unbeatable, which just makes you wonder why she didn’t use that form right from the beginning.
The Fiend’s voice let “let me in.”
So yeah. It’s more stupid Fiend bullsh*t. I don’t even know what else to say about it at this point.


Yet another f*cking terrible episode of Raw. Only AJ vs. Ricochet was worth watching. Even the great promos by Drew and Orton weren’t worth watching, but even if they were, one worthwhile thing an hour is not close to good enough. Bray Wyatt needs to announce his own retirement for the good of WWE.
Hold #712: ARM BAR!

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Re: BRM Reviews the 1/18/2021 Raw (HORRIBLE! And this time, there might actually be consequences)

Post by NWK2000 » Jan 20th, '21, 00:08

Big Red Machine wrote: Jan 19th, '21, 23:42
THE DIRT SHEET WITH SPECIAL GUEST “GOLDBERG”- In terms of actual consequences, this might be the worst thing they’ve done in a while.
I’ll cut to the chase: It was Gillberg. This sort of thing happens so often with Goldberg that I don’t think it actually gets heat with anyone anymore, but the real problem here was the way WWE hyped this up. They had graphics, they had Sarah’s question earlier, they had a Tweet and several big plugs by the announcers.
Usually when a heel does this sort of thing, the company doesn’t actually hype it up. The heel comes out and says that Goldberg (or whichever babyface will be parodied) will be the guest on their talk show, and then they bring out the impersonator. Or, if the company has hyped it up, they make sure that you still get what was advertised by having the babyface come out and beat everyone up. That didn’t happen here, either.
WWE’s ratings are struggling… and they thought it was a good idea to false advertise a huge name? Are you f*cking kidding me? And to d it the week after you advertised a huge main event only to f*ck the fans out of it (and don’t give me that “well Drew was sick” crap. They would have done the same finish with Drew instead of Hunter)? Yeah, you might pop a rating this week, but how many of those people are not going to come back for a long time because you falsely advertised something they wanted to see? Controversy doesn’t create cash when the only side of the story is that you’re screwing your customers.
The announcers also tried to defend the company preemptively with their “I should have known” and “this was too good to be true” lines, and both of those are bullsh*t. Why is it too good to be true that Goldberg would do a talk show segment when he’s in a world title program? And why should you have known? Because no one saw Goldberg backstage even though he was advertised? Then I guess the people running this company completely stupid for hyping this thing up when there were clues that it might not actually be happening.
(Oh. Also, there was a parody Drew. It doesn’t matter. Even if the false advertising wasn’t a problem, this would still have sucked).

I WISH THEY WOULD JUST TURN GOLDBERG HEEL! Like, they've done everything but outright have him cut the promo, and the "too cool for school heel vs fighting champion" story is as simple as Cat in the Hat to tell, and Drew is probably the most genuine "fighting champion" they've had on Raw since....God, maybe D-Bry in 2014?
Up next on NWK Reviews
Walter vs Ilja in WXW
AAA When World Collide
WWF Saint Valentine's Day Massacre
NWA-TNA Weekly Shows
WWE New Year's Revolution 2006

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Re: BRM Reviews the 1/18/2021 Raw (HORRIBLE! And this time, there might actually be consequences)

Post by KILLdozer » Jan 20th, '21, 00:55

LET ME IN BRM, LET ME IN.
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Re: BRM Reviews the 1/18/2021 Raw (HORRIBLE! And this time, there might actually be consequences)

Post by cero2k » Jan 21st, '21, 08:48

Big Red Machine wrote: Jan 19th, '21, 23:42 Bray Wyatt needs to announce his own retirement for the good of WWE.
What are you talking about? He got burnt and killed. When Impact kills people, they legit leave the company, is that not the case here?
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Re: BRM Reviews the 1/18/2021 Raw (HORRIBLE! And this time, there might actually be consequences)

Post by Big Red Machine » Jan 21st, '21, 12:43

cero2k wrote: Jan 21st, '21, 08:48
Big Red Machine wrote: Jan 19th, '21, 23:42 Bray Wyatt needs to announce his own retirement for the good of WWE.
What are you talking about? He got burnt and killed. When Impact kills people, they legit leave the company, is that not the case here?
1. Impact doesn't kill magical people.
2. They have an "Undead Realm." Doesn't that, by definition, imply that people have come back from the dead?
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Re: BRM Reviews the 1/18/2021 Raw (HORRIBLE! And this time, there might actually be consequences)

Post by cero2k » Jan 21st, '21, 13:16

Big Red Machine wrote: Jan 21st, '21, 12:43

1. Impact doesn't kill magical people.
2. They have an "Undead Realm." Doesn't that, by definition, imply that people have come back from the dead?
Undead Realm is just like another dimension, but they're not exactly dead, people get casted there like if it was the Negative Zone. There's people who have died-died like Allie and Page
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Re: BRM Reviews the 1/18/2021 Raw (HORRIBLE! And this time, there might actually be consequences)

Post by Big Red Machine » Jan 21st, '21, 13:51

cero2k wrote: Jan 21st, '21, 13:16
Big Red Machine wrote: Jan 21st, '21, 12:43

1. Impact doesn't kill magical people.
2. They have an "Undead Realm." Doesn't that, by definition, imply that people have come back from the dead?
Undead Realm is just like another dimension, but they're not exactly dead, people get casted there like if it was the Negative Zone. There's people who have died-died like Allie and Page
If people who haven't died are there, then why is it an "undead" realm?
Hold #712: ARM BAR!

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Re: BRM Reviews the 1/18/2021 Raw (HORRIBLE! And this time, there might actually be consequences)

Post by cero2k » Jan 21st, '21, 15:21

Big Red Machine wrote: Jan 21st, '21, 13:51
If people who haven't died are there, then why is it an "undead" realm?
wouldn't it be the 'Dead Realm' if they were dead? I think it's undead because Rosemary/Su Yung/etc don't have souls
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Re: BRM Reviews the 1/18/2021 Raw (HORRIBLE! And this time, there might actually be consequences)

Post by Big Red Machine » Jan 21st, '21, 16:09

cero2k wrote: Jan 21st, '21, 15:21
Big Red Machine wrote: Jan 21st, '21, 13:51
If people who haven't died are there, then why is it an "undead" realm?
wouldn't it be the 'Dead Realm' if they were dead? I think it's undead because Rosemary/Su Yung/etc don't have souls
Undead is a specific term for Vampires/Zombies/Skeletons etc. Stuff that were alive but died and then came back.
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Re: BRM Reviews the 1/18/2021 Raw (HORRIBLE! And this time, there might actually be consequences)

Post by cero2k » Jan 21st, '21, 17:32

Big Red Machine wrote: Jan 21st, '21, 16:09
cero2k wrote: Jan 21st, '21, 15:21
Big Red Machine wrote: Jan 21st, '21, 13:51
If people who haven't died are there, then why is it an "undead" realm?
wouldn't it be the 'Dead Realm' if they were dead? I think it's undead because Rosemary/Su Yung/etc don't have souls
Undead is a specific term for Vampires/Zombies/Skeletons etc. Stuff that were alive but died and then came back.
yeah, so the undead realm is not the dead-dead place, it's the dead-but-can-still-come-back place
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Re: BRM Reviews the 1/18/2021 Raw (HORRIBLE! And this time, there might actually be consequences)

Post by KILLdozer » Jan 22nd, '21, 01:23

Might have to weigh in on this discussion in the morning...
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