Tremendous Tirades 1.27.14: WWE Monday Night Raw
Posted by Larry Csonka on 01.27.2014
WWE six man tags rule…
As a reminder, this will not be another traditional recap, but instead it will be a mash up of the Rs, Instant Analysis and my usual Twitter ramblings I would do during the shows; completely uncensored and as the ideas flow unfiltered to the old keyboard. Remember, this is a review; and I am here to review the show. As always, I encourage discussion and even disagreement, just do so in a respectful manner. I will be doing the review for Raw and most PPVs and iPPVs going forward.
Are Those Daniel Bryan Chants?
WWE Monday Night Raw Does Whatever The Fuck It Wants!
Raw: Episode 1078
Lots of rumors that the show was being re-written during the day, and then again around 6PM ET.
Respect The Authority: For as much as I hate the weekly opening promo segment, I knew this one was coming right after the Rumble, and overall I think it did a good job kicking off the show. The Authority was back to being heels this week, and they did a very good job of it, they just need to STICK with it. They discussed the Rumble being a success, and then thoroughly mocked the crowd because Bryan didn't win. Bryan appeared, cut a good promo and played to the crowd well, which led to Triple H sending the Shield out to attack him. I enjoyed the Authority's, "we just wanted to protect you" line, while Bryan reminded them that they constantly put him in gauntlet and 3 on 1 matches. Good continuity. This led to Sheamus and Cena making the save, and a six man tag being made for later tonight. The winning team gets entry into the elimination chamber match for the WWE Title. I could see the Wyatts screwing Cena, leading to Sheamus and Bryan miscommunication later tonight. Good opening segment, not as long as usual, but got the same things accomplished. Rating (1-10): 7.5
The Real Americans vs. Rey Mysterio and Sin Cara: The Real Americans vs. Rey Mysterio and Sin Cara was the first match of the show, and I was all for this because I want to see Rey vs. Cesaro. They got more time than I expected, as they got to go through the commercial break, but I am not complaining. My compliments to the commentary team for putting over the tag title change from last night and how the division is wide open and that both teams were fighting to get closer to a title shot. A few miscommunications aside, this was a good opener, which saw Cesaro DESTROY Cara with the European uppercut, and then the neutralizer. Interesting teas m id-match with Colter slapping Swagger. They played it as Colter motivating him, but could lead to more down the line. Rating (1-10): 7.0
Bad News Barrett is out. The gimmick sucks, move on please.
WWE Network advertisement.
Fandango w/Summer Rae vs. R-Truth : Woods was on commentary, Emma from NXT was in the crowd once again. Commentary spent the majority of the match ignoring it, as JBL talked with Woods about working on his PHD, and made jokes about ECW being the Harvard of the south. Truth won with the lie detector in a perfectly average match that the commentary did nothing to help. God forbid you guys actually pay attention to the shit going on in the ring and help make it better. That means the commentary failed by ignoring the in ring action for the guy on commentary that lost of 60-seconds last week and wasn't even in the Royal Rumble match. Rating (1-10): 5.5
Randy Orton Time: Randy Orton makes his way to the ring after an announcement from his super best friend Brad Maddox. Randy Orton was pissed about having to defend the title at the Elimination Chamber, which led to Batista making his appearance. Batista said he returned to win the rumble, get his WM title shot, and win the title. He doesn't care who is the champion come WM 30, he will take on who ever it is and win the title, and he doesn't care if Orton and or the Authority don't like it. That led to Lesnar and Heyman coming out. SHIT JUST GOT REAL. Heyman said there were two choices, make history by booking Lesnar vs. Orton for the title, or the alternative, they can book Lesnar vs. Batista. Heyman likes both choices, but the ultimate winners are the WWE Universe, and Lesnar wants the answer tonight…or else. Orton and Batista was completely average and throw away, especially for their first big interaction as the "penciled in" WM 30 main event. But then Lesnar and Heyman came out, Heyman was awesome and essentially hijacked the main event scene with his client's demands. Lesnar just looking generally pissed off and screaming like a Viking killer also amuses me. This recovered nicely.
Rating (1-10): 7.9
The Battle of Cleveland: The Miz vs. Dolph Ziggler: Of course, since this is the battle for Cleveland and they are in Cleveland, they are wearing Cleveland sports jerseys. I wonder if the Wyatts come out and destroy both men, since technically they are in their "hometown," and WWE loves to have guys lose in their hometown. Miz continues to use the figure four without proper use of any in ring psychology, it is completely annoying. The other thing that completely killed the spot, besides there being no real build to it, was the fact that Miz locks in the hold, Ziggler screams and fights for his life, commentary once again is too busy to give a fuck and sell it, instead joking about the whole "Battle of Cleveland" non-gimmick gimmick. Once again commentary, you are there to ENHANCE a match, to tell the story and make what the guys in the ring are doing come off even better. You failed this match, which was short and average to begin with, even if the guys were trying. Rating (1-10): 5.5
Ryback and Curtis Axel vs. The Usos: Love the Usos, have for some time and it is nice to see them getting more chances on TV and also to see more fans reacting well to them. They have charisma, they interact well with the crowds and have grown as performers. They are a great face team to have around. Ryback and Axel continue to drain the charisma from the building anytime they appear on TV. The right team (Usos) won here. They continue to work hard and deliver with the opportunities they are getting on TV as far as never disappointing. But their matches are feeling a bit repetitive against the lesser teams. Not bad, but some more variety would be nice. This was another short, and average match. Nothing bad in any way, but just not great. Rating (1-10): 6.0
Alberto Del Rio vs. Kofi Kingston: Both guys are in limbo, as WWE has no clue what to do with them. Del Rio is coming off of a title run no one cared about, lost to Cena and is just a guy. Kofi gets pops when he comes out and does his spots, but they do not care about him. The crowd turned on the match and decided to entertain themselves by chanting JBL and Jerry. Del Rio and Kofi did a double down spot off the turnbuckles, no fucks were given because the announcers pandered to the crowd. Seriously, there is playing to the crowd, but they have completely ignored that match to play to the live crowd, leaving Del Rio and Kofi for dead because they are not doing a damn thing to help the match. This was all before the commercial. If I had to guess, someone got in the ears of the announcers, because they suddenly started calling the match when we came back from commercial. This was another match where the guys worked hard, but between the crowd not caring all the much and the early commentary, it is average at best. Rating (1-10): 6.0
AJ Lee, Tamina, Askana, and Alicia Fox vs. Nikki, Brie, Cameron and Naomi: This was a short tag match for the divas, which is the usual for them in that they never get time. The match was solid, they got a good reaction for the suplex spot, and Naomi continues to show she is quite the athlete and growing as a performer. With her scoring the win over Champion AJ Lee, I would assume she will be getting a title shot in the near future. I would like to see the ladies get some more time, but overall not real complaints here. Rating (1-10): 6.5
The second member of the 2014 WWE Hall of Fame Class is… Jake "The Snake" Roberts! It should be one hell of a speech, looking forward to that. Jake joins the Warrior in the 2014 Hall of Fame Class.
We get a WWE Network ad.
Christian returns on Friday's Smackdown.
Winning Team Gets Into The Elimination Chamber: The Shield (Ambrose, Rollins and Reigns) vs. John Cena, Sheamus and Daniel Bryan: Big stakes here, as the winning team gets into the Elimination Chamber match. As I said earlier in the report, I could see the Wyatts screwing Cena, leading to Sheamus and Bryan miscommunication, setting up those rumored matches, which also allows for the continued drama within the Shield if they are in the chamber. This was such an easy match to book, WWE does six-man tags very well. The Shield has been having great six-man tags for over a year, and Sheamus, Cena and Bryan all get crowd reactions and also deliver. When you have great ingredients, as long as you follow directions, you get a good product. Good match and then it got VERY good with the Daniel Bryan hot tag, spears from Reigns and the buckle bomb by Rollins. Some great work between Rollins and Bryan, they simply work so well together. Reigns was fighting out of the STF when the Wyatts gimmick hit, just like last night, which led to a DQ finish. He Shield bailed, and the faces cleared the ring of the Wyatts. The match got really good and the ending was hot, but the finish took away a bit for me, as it came off as one of those, "we don't want to beat anyone" finishes. But overall I really enjoyed that and it was the best thing on the show. Rating (1-10): 8.0
Cole says with the DQ win that Cena, Sheamus and Bryan qualify for the Elimination Chamber.
The Wyatts stare down everyone from the entrance ramp.
Thanks for reading.
Hour one was an overall good start to the show. The opening promo segment was good and set up the big main event with a real important stipulation, which is appreciated. The opening tag match was good, and the real Americans pulled off a good win and continue to work very well together as a team. Hour two really lacked for me, it didn't completely fall off a cliff and suck or anything, but much of it felt useless and like it was filler. We've had that discussion before, but it remains the same. The opening hour stuff with Lesnar, Batista and Orton was good, but everything else was forgettable. Hour three saw the announcement of Jake Roberts into the hall of fame, which was great, Lesnar destroy the Rhodes brothers and the hot tag match to close the show.
One negative at different times was the commentary team. It has been said time and time again, they need to be enhancing the in ring story, making you care about what is in the ring. This cannot be a selective thing. We have a hard enough time getting the crowd to care about certain performers due to poor booking, we don't need the commentary team sabotaging these efforts. Perhaps instead of playing grab ass with each other, they could focus the efforts on the mid-card matches, noting that these guys are fighting and clawing for a shot to be on the WrestleMania card. They only mentioned that it was WrestleMania season about 20 times, play into that, it is not that hard.
Overall I liked the show, even with the weak second hour. Not a bad way to start the build to the Chamber and Mania season, but not great either.
Show Rating: 7.3
As a reminder, I will be going by the 411 scale…
0 - 0.9: Torture 1 - 1.9: Extremely Horrendous 2 - 2.9: Very Bad 3 - 3.9: Bad 4 - 4.9: Poor 5 - 5.9: Not So Good 6 - 6.9: Average 7 - 7.9: Good 8 - 8.9:Very Good 9 - 9.9: Amazing 10: Virtually Perfect
The final rating is not simply an average of the rated segments above. The rating takes them into account as well as the segments that are small but not scored, the flow of the show, the overall booking, build to PPV, crowd reactions, and so on and so forth.
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Larry Csonka is a Pisces and enjoys rolling at jiu jitsu class with Hotty McBrownbelt, cooking, long walks on the beach, Slingo and the occasional trip to Jack in the Box. He is married to a soulless ginger and has two beautiful daughters who are thankfully not soulless gingers; and is legally allowed to marry people in 35 states. He has been a wrestling fan since 1982 and has been writing for 411 since May 24th, 2004; contributing over 3,000 columns, TV reports and video reviews to the site.