Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Bootyham Raw Review

As a welcome change of pace, Raw didn't start with the usual long Authority opening promo. Instead, we got Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman. Heyman did his usual great promo, selling the Fastlane main event. Dean Ambrose interrupted and came face to face with Brock. This was great because Dean is the first guy to straight up not show fear against Lesnar since he broke the streak and because of his character, it was believable. Dean admitted that provoking Brock isn't a good idea but that he's willing to do anything, even take a trip to Suplex City, to become the WWE Champion. He came out to say that to Brock's face out of respect. He left right after. That segment sold me on Brock vs. Ambrose more than any of the Reigns/Brock angles from the road to WrestleMania last year.

The United States Champion, Kalisto, took on Rusev next. Rusev had that Rock banging whore Lana with him. Alberto Del Rio was on commentary because we're getting Del Rio/Kalisto V at Fastlane. Del Rio was so boring on commentary. Just let him be a face and let him be him. It's so much better than this uncomfortable heel stuff he's doing. Heel Del Rio has almost never worked. Commentary as a whole sucked here, calling Kalisto a mosquito about 200 times. Kalisto won via countout, which at least protected Rusev. Backstage, Stephanie McMahon tells Ambrose and Reigns that they will face New Day tonight. She also attempted to drive a wedge between them, calling Ambrose Reigns' sidekick. After discussing Nikki Bella's neck surgery, we move to a tag match. But first, we have to make fun of Lillian Garcia for saying Grammy instead of Slammy. They even replay it. It seemed like it was in good fun, but that also feels like they were going out of their way to poke fun. Lillian has been making tons of mistakes over the past year or so, and I wonder why they chose to focus on this one. The Usos defeated the Social Outcasts in a decent tag match. The weird thing is that they make the Social Outcasts out to be jobbers, but actually had them be competitive here. Bo Dallas/Bo Rida wasn't there due to BlackJack Mulligan being hospitalized. Bray Wyatt wasn't in attendance either.

                             There would be no AJ Styles match this week on Raw, but he was the guest on MizTV. I was a bit worried because Miz is so good on the mic and talking isn't AJ's strong suit. However, this was masterfully done. Miz cut off AJ at every turn, not allowing him to speak but telling AJ's story. Miz did it in a way that he came off like a dick, but he also put over AJ. He did so well that he got the dead crowd into the segment and they exploded when AJ finally got fed up and attacked Miz. Serious props to the Miz for his work here. It led to a match this coming Thursday on Smackdown. Honestly, if there's anything from Raw that you should see, it's this and the Ambrose/Brock stuff.

Most likely because Nikki is injured, Brie Bella is a face again. The Bellas are like the female Big Show. Brie faced Charlotte in a non-title match. Ric tried to get involved but Alicia Fox stopped him and Brie stole a win. Is this going to lead to something? Does Brie leap frog Sasha and Becky? Or was this just to plug Total Divas? I doubt creative knows either. In a rematch from their epic encounter at TLCS 2014, Big Show met Erick Rowan. Show even grabbed the steel steps beforehand, reminding us of their terrible stairs match. Show beat Rowan handily, in about a minute. The Wyatts, sans Bray, then beat up Show. Why should I take them seriously? The Wyatts have become a big joke. Anyway, continuing the trend of short matches, Titus O'Neil defeated Tyler Breeze. Breeze has officially become pretty much nothing on the main roster. Instead of pushing a guy like Breeze, they push Titus simply because he gets those father awards and it's good PR. I have nothing against Titus, but Breeze shouldn't be getting squashed by him.

The never ending series of matches between Dolph Ziggler and Kevin Owens continued They don't really have bad matches but they're never really that good. They're kind of just there. This one seemed better than most, but I couldn't get into it because of my feelings towards the series. Owens dominated here but ZIggler rallied and scored his first win over Owens. I wonder where this is going. Sasha Banks came out next and cut a promo saying that she's going to be on her own now. Team BAD showed up and took issue with this, but Sasha said they're still friends. Sasha wrestled Becky Lynch for a few minutes until Team BAD tried to intervene. Sasha stopped them, causing them to attack her. Becky helped out and two NXT standouts sent the lesser women packing. Again, I have no clue where this goes but at least Sasha is away from Naomi and Tamina.

Chris Jericho gets interviewed about AJ Styles. It seems like we will get that at Fastlane. Goldust meets R-Truth in the bathroom and wants him to be his partner still. It was a pretty funny segment. I'd still mark for a Cody/Goldust reunion though. New Day was out for the main event and once again stole the show. Their promo involved them calling the Rock a potty mouth, telling a kid in the front row that they would fight him and mentioning the Ambrose/Reigns Tumblr fangirls. The main event match itself was pretty good. They worked the hot tag to Dean and not Roman which was different. The faces won and Brock Lesnar came out. New Day attacked them before anything could happen. Roman dealt with Kofi outside, leaving Lesnar open to lay out Ambrose with the F5, closing the show.

Overall, I felt this was a middle of the pack episode of Raw. There was some good, like the MizTV segment, the New Day promo and the Ambrose/Brock stuff. Some stuff was alright like the Sasha segment, Owens/Ziggler and the main event. Some of it sucked like Rowan/Show, Breeze jobbing and Del Rio on commentary. 5/10.