Oh dear - nobody watched this show. All right, I'll write it up, but this won't become a habit so don't enjoy it or nothin'.
AJ Lee - whose last name is Lee because Cole said it a hundred times tonight - Ms. Lee made a main event of a #1 Contender's Match for SummerSlam with Big Show and CM Punk. This was the culmination of a fairly decent opening interviewfest where CM Punk called out Jerry Lawler for his propaganda disguised as commentary at the end of last week's show. He's the WWE Champion - and the Champion is where the focus needs to be...not on The Rock, not on Cena.
IN that match, Cena narrowly avoided being counted out after he collided with (conveniently joining the commentators for the main event) Punk out on the floor - but as Cena lifted Show for an impossible Attitude Adjustment, Punk hit the ring with a title shot (or was it just a double sledge? I forget) to Show's back - which was interpreted as a combination move to take out Cena's legs from under him - leading everyone involved to wonder just who won the match. Punk settled things by taking the match and proclaiming no winners - "...they are both losers." But Lee had different ideas, coming out in her business suit (but with glasses off) and gently grinding one toe into the stage as she announced a Triple Threat WWE Championship match for SummerSlam - Punk vs. Show vs. Cena.
Also tonight, AJ started to take some measure of revenge on Daniel Bryan - turns out she saw the men in white coats backstage and had some ideas about what Bryan had planned to do right after their nuptials completed - by booking him in a nontitle match against Sheamus. This was the #RAWactive match - based on tweets, "street fight" beat out "no holds barred" and "falls count anywhere" taking 73% of the tweets. (I didn't vote; they all looked like "no DQ" to me.) This match kicked off the second hour of the show and was fairly bruising, with a chair, kendo stick and steel steps half all being utilized in various fashion - with ... uh, I can't remember how Sheamus won. WWE.com says Brogue Kick and Bryan landed on the steps in the ring...yeah, that's right. After the match, Bryan refused to leave the ring, demanding a doctor to look at his hurt neck and ignoring the pleas of several officials in the process. Kofi Kingston and R-Truth came out for the next match and after words were exchanged, Bryan kicked Little Jimmy clear out of the ring (I guess)! This led to the men in white coats coming out - but not for Truth; it turned out Lee had determined that Bryan was looking a little mentally unstable and needed a mental health check! They finally escorted Bryan out of the ring, while Lee dug one of her toes into the stage and stood askew.
Not much luck for Kingston, as he lost to Titus O'Neil after a Clash of the Titus when AW distracted him by throwing one of his shoes. AW made his own news by including a "Kobe Bryant in a Colorado hotel" reference in his ringside mic'd remarks - it was seen as bad enough that Cole issued an official WWE apology™ in the next segment.
Hour three kicked off with ANOTHER match which saw Chris Jericho team with Christian to take on the case-n-belt duo of Dolph Ziggler in a long, back and forth affair - good match which saw Jericho pin Ziggler after Christian thumbed him in the eye. Ziggler quickly got his back, waffling Jericho in the back with the case.
Also tonight: Tensai dominated Tyson Kidd and scored the pinfall, but continued to attack after the bell despite the warnings of official Ryan Tran, who was left with no choice but to reverse the decision and award the match to Kidd by way of a disqualification. This didn't make Tensai much happier, so Sakamoto (or as Lawler called him, "Sum Ting Wong") got his ears boxed and thrown out of the ring.
Heath Slater said the time for legends was over and issued an open challenge to any CURRENT superstar in the back - this led to the triumphant return of Randy Orton, who didn't have much trouble dispatching the One Man Band.
With no pyro available due to an accidental fire set during pyro rehearsal, Vickie Guerrero interrupted Brodus Clay's dance routine before any pyro would have gone off and engaged in a dance routine of her own - her "Elaine" went over about as well as last time. Getting back on script, Damien Sandow came out, identifying himself as "your martyr" and showing us the DX beating from last week. This led to an ambush/clip on Clay and Sandow left him laying.
Finally, in another nontitle match, United States Champion Santino Marella went down to a carless (no car allowed due to the pyro accident) Albert del Rio, although it did take a bit of distraction from Ricardo Rodriguez along the way. After the match, Del Rio took the mic and said he was done competing until SummerSlam.
There were two Tout segments - What did you think of Punk's comments? and Who is crazier: Daniel or AJ? - and an awful lot of clips of last week's show AND the first hour (in case people missed it) - no HHH, no Lesnar, except via clip package from last week (with lots more Stephanie and Heyman than HHH and Lesnar...oh well). I don't remember seeing Rock outside the "RAW 1000" clip package. Some packages played twice, in case you missed the first hour.
Finally, our "commentators chuckle of the night" came in the second of three (!) backstage segments of Daniel Bryan talking to a doctor who was evaluating his psychiatic state. In segment one, the doctor asked a series of yes/no questions which led to Bryan shouting "Yes" over and over as loud as he could - in the second, ink blots were examined and somehow led to an inkblot collage that resembled a goat face. Bryan asked aloud if Charlie Sheen was behind everything and watching him - which confused the doctor, who obviously never watched this show either. In the final segment, the doctor proclaimed him not crazy (but did not stamp his hand), but after leaving, the lights changed to red and Kane appeared, proclaiming himself Bryan's "Anger Management™ counselor" and delivering a beatdown.
Still no opening theme - bumpers continued to switch between "Tonight is the Night" by Outasight (conflicting with reports that we'd only hear it last week) and Shinedown's "The Energy" (still unidentified on air) as RAW theme songs. The official theme song of SummerSlam is Kevin Rudolf's "Don't Give Up." The sheets of light on either side of the tron were out of commission due to the fire, but the tron itself still managed to work just fine as a giant screen.
Well, there's the nuts and bolts. Now, you fill in the emotion. (And if I somehow forgot anything, let me know that, too. I spot checked against wwe.com's 9 paragraph, 9 page report and think I hit all the bullets.)
EDIT: Forgot the backstage crap - but unfortunately, I also remembered it. It's up there now.
WWE finally figured out how to make Big Show vs. Cena entertaining: By putting CM Punk on commentary.
A few good matches but holy cow, the video packages and recaps. It's one thing to recap something to make it feel important, but WWE really seemed to run it into the ground here. I'd say "let's give them a few weeks to get their footing in the three hours and sort out how to best use the time," but this isn't their first three-hour show.
I thought Randy Orton, the original Legend Killer, coming out to dispatch of Heath Slater was as it should've been. I did feel bad for those who have Tensai in their fantasy wrestling leagues and lost a win thanks to the reverse decision.
I'm not sure about AJ's character anymore: Is she still supposed to be crazy? Was it all a ruse?
@gregmparks - live Tweeting of Raw and Impact, wrestling thoughts and other slices of life.
Liked the opening promo, liked the tag match with Jericho and Christian vs Ziggler and Miz. AJ was cute in her power suit, and fun while initially oppressing Bryan. That was it.
You knew there was no way they could measure up to last week, but that was a "Sum of All Fears" show for me. Just wretched, groan-inducing time filling 'comedy' segments, Tout-Twitter-Shazam plugola, Recap after recap after recap. I was back on the computer with the show on in the background before the first hour was done.
Also didn't like the end. So now CM Punk turns out to be the attention whore? He has such a clear and easy path here, I get the impression that someone back there decided he was getting too many cheers in the opening segment. Not unfixable, but if the idea is that Punk can't point out the problems with Cena and Rock.. it's going to make it feel like Punk has regressed to SES/New Nexus days.
At least the triple threat with B1G Show and Cena literally gives Punk a chance to be tweener.
AW's comment was hilarious, but only 20 percent because of the joke itself. 40 percent was more "wtf, where did that random reference come from? It's not even cheap heat, they're in Cincinnati, not Los Angeles," and the other 40 percent was "ah ha ha, RIP AW's live mic gimmick."
If there's a god, next week Sandow comes out to the ring accompanied by the Waltzadactls and they do a proper slow dance before his match.
I admittedly would've marked the hell out had The Ryback emerged to deal with Tensai's rampage.
The ink blots resembling a goat face was an actual funny visual gag, I'll give them credit. Everything else about those segments was...uh, well, it was there. Bryan/Sheamus was a great match, I could see those two stiff the crap out of each other every week.
Not to mention seeing Bryan stiffing Little Jimmy! Given how that kick launched Jimmy straight from inside the ring over the ropes and to the floor, Jimmy is the best bumper in the company. Kofi's reaction throughout all this was great. It was just, "Uh, yeah, Truth, that's....um, a real shame about Jimmy. Yeah."
Punk's tweenerdom officially died tonight. It's been said before and it's true --- when a guy is a whiner, it's officially a heel turn. Punk complaining about the lack of a spotlight cinches it. If only he'd carried around a few packs of creamer and said he was the cream of the crop and the spotlight should be directly on him. If Punk was supposed to actually be a tweener, he would've challenged both men for Summerslam himself and not been one-upped by AJ to end the show.
(edited by Big Bad on 31.7.12 0341) "It breaks your heart. It is designed to break your heart. The game begins in the spring, when everything else begins again, and it blossoms in the summer, filling the afternoons and evenings, and then as soon as the chill rains come, it stops and leaves you to face the fall alone." --- Bart Giamatti, on baseball
3 hour show - 1 hour of recaps = sounds good to me.
I also had a good laugh at the "vote for the stipulation" shenanigans; what exactly are the differences between a No Holds Barred, Falls Count Anywhere, or Street Fight? THE EXACT SAME MATCH WOULD'VE HAPPENED NO MATTER THE VOTE!
"Laugh and the world laughs with you. Frown and the world laughs at you." -Me.
Originally posted by Big BadPunk's tweenerdom officially died tonight. It's been said before and it's true --- when a guy is a whiner, it's officially a heel turn. Punk complaining about the lack of a spotlight cinches it. If only he'd carried around a few packs of creamer and said he was the cream of the crop and the spotlight should be directly on him. If Punk was supposed to actually be a tweener, he would've challenged both men for Summerslam himself and not been one-upped by AJ to end the show.
2011 Punk would have called out the cliche of the non-ending and triple-threat stipulation. Remember when he was mocking contract signings for always ending in fights? That's what Righteous Punk did. Surly Punk has to live out those cliches. And that's pretty dang boring.
"To be the man, you gotta beat demands." -- The Lovely Mrs. Tracker
And I am already sick of AJ being GM. She just looks like Mini-Steph. I mean I think that was the same suit from 2002 when Steph was GM. Everything was just too rushed. Having wretlers committed is a genius idea. If anything, it would have gotten rid of some of the comedy bits that go nowhere. Like say the first hour of the show. God, that was brutal.
I like Punk's promo and the fact he got in Jerry's face over it. I did not like the cliche, everyone interrupting him to set up a rather boring Summer Slam main event. Turning Punk heel is probably the 2012 equivalent of turning Austin heel in 2001. He is still going to get cheers, because he is savvy enough on the mic to get cheers. Even if he goes full heel, the smark fans who attend the Big 4 are still going to chant his name while booing Cena. They should have just turned Cena and forgot about Big Show. Lord knows everyone else has. That would have been more epic.
Bryan is great and he had a great match with Sheamus. I am just afraid, he might bet a little overexposed, but yet he keeps hitting it out of the park. Sadly, it just leads to a feud with Kane.
The Wee Baby Sheamus.Twitter: @realjoecarfley its a bit more toned down there. A bit.
Three hours of RAW is just...Too Much...we opted to just keep tabs on what Punk and Jericho were up to and drop in+out watching it. I'll go back and watch the Sheamus/Bryan match and the main event tonight but it sounds like the parts I missed were missable...
Originally posted by MayhemOther than the mohawk & no facial hair, what was different about Orton? I can't put my finger on it. Was he smaller?
He was also...paler, especially next to the One Man Rock Band, who is apparently trying to be so orange he matches his hair.
Originally posted by Spiraling_ShapeThree hours of RAW is just...Too Much...we opted to just keep tabs on what Punk and Jericho were up to and drop in+out watching it.
This has become my coping strategy as well. I watch RAW on DVR around 11 and basically, I'll watch Punk, AJ, and Daniel without question. I'll stop for Heath Slater being humiliated because I find him funny. Dolph gets a glance, Jericho gets consideration, and well... that's about it. I don't care about the rest. Everything else I fast forward. I flew through the first hour of RAW in about 15 minutes and the whole show took more or less an hour to "watch".
Originally posted by Lexus I also had a good laugh at the "vote for the stipulation" shenanigans; what exactly are the differences between a No Holds Barred, Falls Count Anywhere, or Street Fight? THE EXACT SAME MATCH WOULD'VE HAPPENED NO MATTER THE VOTE!
Well, except for the Falls Counting Anywhere part, but it probably would have had the same finish if that won the vote.
(edited by John Orquiola on 31.7.12 0827) @CMPunk “@ZackRyder: @CMPunk She played me bro” I got your back.
I'm with you there, though I use written reviews and Youtube clips rather than a DVR to skim through RAW each week. Back in the spring I was watching almost entire shows, while this summer I've been watching an average of 15 minutes each week, and usually wondering why the hell I'm bothering even doing that. This has been a seriously bad stretch for WWE ever since the initial Lesnar craze died down and Big Show got put into main events again.
A Street Fight, under WWE rules, has almost always equalled "no holds barred match where both guys wear jeans", hasn't it? I feel like there's a class-action lawsuit that we can exploit here that might be more successful and pertinent than Heyman's forgotten lawsuit against HHH.
Show felt like eight hours instead of three, even with a very, very good Bryan/Sheamus match. Pretty much all of the spots with the two of them outside the ring launching each other into were fantastic. (Also, I would have fewer problems with Sheamus' destroyer push if they were building up to an invincible, tormenting Brock Lesnar vs. unstoppable, bully-slaying Sheamus match, which might have been the best possible use of Brock.)
Punk's reluctant promo at the beginning was nicely done, but kind of immediately undermined. Kinda confused about where they think they're going with this. If Punk is indeed the heel, are we supposed to accept that his "the WWE champion should be treated as the most important Superstar" argument is wrong? It's an especially weird position for the company to book themselves into, isn't it? I mean, I know the spin will be "Punk is an egomaniac", but it's hard to get around the fact that he has a very rational point and that the title should be the ultimate goal and focus of everyone in the company.
Very dismayed by the overall direction of seemingly everything if this is going to be the angle until the Rumble. I really want to watch Rock vs. Punk. I really don't want to watch the slog that will be getting there. And unfortunately, there's not much on the undercard that is doing much to keep my interest in the meantime.
Originally posted by Big BadRAW IS RAPE JOKES AND (IMAGINARY) CHILD ABUSE
I am compelled to point out that Kofi (and/or Bryan), like Layla last week, specifically noted that Little Jimmy is an Invisible Child, not and Imaginary Child. The distinction is important!
Potential upside of AW's unfortunate choice of words: they might actually let Titus/Young talk now. I was bummed that they chose the exact moment that the two of them started to go into one of their bits to cut away to a replay.
Originally posted by lotjxAnd I am already sick of AJ being GM. She just looks like Mini-Steph. I mean I think that was the same suit from 2002 when Steph was GM.
No way. AJ is a good 6 inches shorter than Steph. That suit would never fit her.
What if they used only half it? Also a shout out for Kofi wearing Skeletor tights, good use of that Mattel contract. I want to see Rock/Punk at the Rumble or at Mania, but I have no faith after they fucked up a rather easy lay ups of Cena/Rock and Lesnar. I was also surprised to see fans actually agree on Trout with him, so I am not sure what they are doing or trying to do. Punk is right though, he is champ and should be the focus. Its just it seems like it would make more sense with Cena than Rock.
The Wee Baby Sheamus.Twitter: @realjoecarfley its a bit more toned down there. A bit.
If you want the real conspiracy theory, Pat McNeil mentioned Tom Zenk's claim that Smackdown was loaded earlier because they were up for renewal with UPN. Now that RAW is coming up for renewal with Spike TV, it's the better show.