1)If the Bryan-Orton promo in segment 1 last night was on Monday at Raw, it would have taken the entire week in a different direction. Orton justified his actions asking wouldn't you use help to get what you want before Bryan coming out and playing the strong face explaining why he is not everything Randy is, but he is still better led to what I thought was the strongest promo I've seen him do in the WWE.
2)Paul Heyman continues to be the best thing on any of their shows. I'm not really excited about seeing Axel-Punk again, but after listening to Heyman's promo, I wanted to see what happens on Monday night.
3)The ADR-Christian match told a story. Both went 50-50 in a strong, snug match. I thought the post-match was a bit contrived, but it did its job of setting up RVD-ADR with Ricardo playing Fonzie 2.0.
4)The Big Show/Mark Henry-3MB was created to set up the program with the Shield and that did its job. I did like the 3MB start where they went Rock-Paper-Scissors to decide on who got to face Big Show. Seth Rollins is getting better with the promos and Roman Reigns is that old school monster in the background who when he speaks makes you go whoa.
5)If anybody thought Darren Young's coming out would make a difference, it didn't. The crowd was dead, in fact there was a "We The People" chant started by some in the crowd which was weird since Bakersfield is a heavily populated Hispanic city.
6)The Barrett-Bryan cage match was a very hard hitting, physical match. It will probably take up the final 20-22 minutes of the broadcast. Kinda figured Orton would be make an appearance somewhere, but how he did was very effective as I didn't see him come out at all while they were setting up the cage.
7)The dark match main event was good. Its weird to see Show and Henry play total white-meat babyfaces while the on camera roles are the total opposite. The match itself showed the difference between the guys who were trained outside of the WWE system. All 6 guys sold and made you believe in what was going on.
DARK MATCH/MAIN EVENT
1)Damien Sandow's promo got the crowd riled up as Sin Cara is popular here, but having a one-handed Cara go over makes no sense.
2)The six man showed off how good all of the guys are as athletes. It was the first time I got to see the Shield up close (other than later in the night) and they really good as this unit that will get you in the end. The Usos were more over than I thought and Kofi, well, at least he has some new ink on his back.
3)AJ-Naomi was a lot better than I thought, I guess that's the best thing you can say about the Divas division.
4)Khali-Swagger was a lot of shenanigans.
5)Bray Wyatt-Justin Gabriel was the final match of Main Event. Wyatt wins with the Sister Abigal in about 3 minutes (mostly a squash). The Wyatt Family went completely over the heads of most of the crowd. But as this creepy Texas Chainsaw, backwoods crew, it will be a very effective set of characters for the company.
1)The crowd was into the action throughout the night. They set the building up with less seats than the 2012 taping (when we were moved into better seats) which made it a more intimate set up.
2)Having the cage prevented the building from using its big screen to show the action. This hurt during the Main Event portion of the night as several of the segments were more TV oriented than for the live audience.
3) Finally as someone who uses Just for Men for his Beard, any WWE Superstar who has a beard, make sure your using some before going out. The HD cameras pick up your gray hairs pretty easily.