Monday, September 9, 2013

LIVE Raw thoughts - September 9, 2013

11:10 - I was a little worried two things were going to happen.  I was first worried that the show would end, AGAIN, with Orton standing over a beaten Daniel Bryan (I don't mind the beat downs, but the visual of him standing over Bryan's body with the title over his head is getting old).  I was then worried that they'd give the heroic moment to Big Show, and not Bryan, by having the giant punch Orton.  They teased both, but resisted both as well.  In the end, the right thing happened -- Bryan took advantage of an opportunity and took down Orton himself.  The final moment of the episode was Bryan standing over Orton, holding the title high.  It was a refreshing ending and I'm glad they went with it.

10:44 - I wonder if Edge will have a specialty Smackdown t-shirt like the one he had for Raw?

10:41 - Nothing expresses anger like destroy a 30 year old television.

10:36 - It just occurred to me that Christian got changed into his wrestling gear just to pretend to get beat up.

10:35 - And the Internet will now explode with airbrush jokes!

10:27 - Ricardo Rodriguez is not nearly as entertaining and charming as he used to be in this role.  This pairing with Rob Van Dam is just a poor fit for both of them.

10:25 - Does anybody on this show not cry?

10:18 - The expected result, but it was a fun match.  I particularly enjoyed seeing Goldust hit Cody's finisher.

10:02 - Always been a big Goldust fan.  Exciting to see him back in the ring.

9:54 - Just remember, I always said that the Miz shouldn't ever be a face.

9:40 - That spinning thing was pretty f'n cool.  Like Kofi, I REALLY wish they would do something with Cesaro as well.

9:37 - I still think Santino works better as the oblivious heel than the lovable face.

9:30 - Not mentioning that ADR has Mexican flags hanging around the corners for the ring until AFTER the match is over.  Your observant announcers, folks!

9:17 - The announcers are really annoying in this segment.  The announcers kept harping on her being jealous of not being on Total Divas, despite her repeatedly saying that she only cares about the championship and not being on the show.  But hey, let's get over the show and not the championship, right?  And then they kept belittling her professional accomplishments and making it seem like she's a loser for not being on Total Divas.

9:13 - I've never watched Total Divas, but I find it funny that on WWE television, JoJo is portrayed as a face while Eva Marie is portrayed as a heel.  Yet if you check out, their reviews of the show seem to portray Eva Marie as a go-getter and JoJo as a bitter, sore loser.

9:07 - We've had public job evaluations, why not public medical exams?

9:06 - The "This is awkward!" chant is awesome.

8:55 - While somewhat protected, that was a pretty decisive loss for Ziggler.  I'm not really sure what's going on with him.

8:46 - So Dolph Ziggler went from fighting the machine to wanting to prove himself to Triple H?  They've really dropped the ball with him.  The crowd was RED HOT for him after his title win and even following his face turn.  Now he's just floundering.

8:41 - Peculiar backstage segment there.  I understand what they were going for -- it makes sense to have a face sympathize with Big Show, instead of judging him -- in order to keep the fans on his side.  But I wonder if Booker T was the right choice.  In a lot of ways he's perfect.  He's retired, so he doesn't need to worry about his own crowd reaction.  But at the same time, I'm not entirely convinced he has SUCH a deep relationship with the audience that people would say, "Well, if Booker T's okay with it, then I guess he can't be all that bad."

8:37 - Wow, is this the first time Jerry Lawler has ever been dressed like an adult?

8:31 - I REALLY wish they would do SOMETHING with Kofi Kingston.  When was the last time he was in a legitimate angle?

8:25 - Have they explicitly stated one way or another whether the Intercontinental Championship is on the line at Night of Champions?  I mean, all indications point at "no," but I'm surprised they haven't outright said so yet.

8:19 - Effective segment, and I was glad that Triple H played a straight up standard heel.  Didn't try to get the crowd on his side at any time.

8:11 - One of the great things about Daniel Bryan -- and something we missed, to an extent, with CM Punk -- is that he doesn't need to act cooler than the room.  When he's standing in the middle of the ring and the crowd is erupting for him, he can smile and look happy.  It makes it more fulfilling for the fans.

8:05 - Man, I miss Edge.  I still maintain that the World Heavyweight Championship would be treated with a lot more respect if Edge was still around.

8:01 - Everybody's entrances these days are so bland and generic that it's almost surreal seeing Edge come out with the smoke and pyro.

7:03 - Alright, I'm getting things off to an early start so that I can kick off a pre-Raw discussion.  I was going to do a Trending Topic on this, but figured things might change by the time I write it later this week.  Anyway, this discussion will be on the Big Show's story from last week.  Like others, I found the whole thing flawed.  They wanted us to feel a certain way without writing the story behind.  All that Triple H had done was sign a match between Daniel Bryan and the Big Show -- a match that had happened numerous times in the past.  It didn't seem decidedly evil, yet they kept harping on the fact that Big Show was adamantly against it.  Why?  The one argument they COULD make was that Big Show was aware of the damage Daniel Bryan had suffered after weeks of 4 on 1 assaults from the Shield and Randy Orton, and that he was in no condition to fight.  But that wasn't the route they took.  Again, they wanted to create an emotional response without actually giving us a story that warrants that.

And as far as the match goes, there were no consequences.  So what if Big Show won?  So what if Big Show lost?  With nothing on the line, there was no reason to get invested.  Let's say fans care about Big Show getting fired....why would they root for Daniel Bryan?  In their eyes, he's only making a difficult situation worse for the Big Show.

What would I have done?  Glad you asked.  Triple H's firing spree was already established through Cody Rhodes.  So why not Triple H sign Daniel Bryan vs. the Big Show.  And since Daniel Bryan is the #1 Contender for the WWE Championship, he needs to be winning.  So if Daniel Bryan loses against the Big Show, then he's fired.  Now Big Show has a motivation to not want to fight.  Then you have Triple H say "if it appears to me like you're holding back, you're going to be the one who is fired."  Now there's something on the line, and the fans can relate to the internal struggle.  They'll still root for Bryan (their #1 face) because they don't want him to lose.  But they'll sympathize with Big Show's struggle because they don't want him to be unfairly fired, either.

And, thankfully, they haven't even booked themselves into a corner.  They can have the Shield run in and attack Bryan, earning him the DQ victory, which would prevent him from getting fired.  Then you go with the original ending of the Shield holding Bryan and Triple H forcing him to knock him out.

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