For Your Considerationâ€¦The RAW Judicial Review for 10/25/11
Welcome back to the longest running action-adventure, passive-aggressive, ring-collapsingist column on the world wide web, For Your Consideration. Iâ€™m your ambivalent host Andrew Wheeler, and this rudderless program continues to just languish in a sea of apathy as I attempt to bring to you the sights and sounds of the horrorâ€¦the horror.
Vengeance was the epitome of a bland, listless pay-per-view. Nothing of real note happened over the course of three hours, though it wasnâ€™t so atrocious that people can rightfully burn Vinceâ€™s house down. We knew John Cena wasnâ€™t going to win because right now is when the company starts solidifying Wrestlemania plans, and Cena/Rock isnâ€™t going to be a title match. We knew Orton was going to win because heâ€™s dropped matches at the last two PPVs and the Intercontinental Title wasnâ€™t on the line. We knew Eve Eve wasnâ€™t dropping the title becauseâ€¦come on. We knew Mark Henry wasnâ€™t losing the belt to The Big Show because you donâ€™t feed Orton to Henry (metaphorically) unless youâ€™re planning on making Mark a monster heel. And we knew that there was no point to job out Miz and Truth to Hunter and Punk, especially considering Nash was going to be involved. The show wasnâ€™t clumsily booked but it wasnâ€™t thrilling either, which has been the WWEâ€™s MO for the better part of this new decade. Speaking of whichâ€¦
The RAW Judicial Review for 10/25/11
â€œEverybodyâ€™s got a price.â€
We open, as most early 00 RAWs have, with Triple H in jeans and a black t-shirt. We know heâ€™s all business because heâ€™s not wearing a suit, nor did he take the time to do a full spit-take. Hunter, in full on â€œtrying not to cry/drunkâ€ mode, talks about how this is a tough business. Killer Kowalski told him you can make friends or you can make money, which is the greatest justification for irrational behavior in the history of the world.
Hunter is the lucky one. No, not because he fell penis-first into the most secure position in the industry, but because he has friends like Shawn Michaels, Kevin Nash and Sean Waltman. Guess Scott Hall got bumped for time or edited for content. Hunter thought Nash was one of his bestest friends in the whole wide world, but when Hunter got power, Nash got all pissy. He then does the Kliq/Wolfpac sign, which he thought would last foreverâ€¦like wrestling retirements and guaranteed pushes. Apparently Nash stole Hunterâ€™s heart and his cat. Triple H says that now he is going to kick Nashâ€™s ass.
Johnny Super Ace comes down and says that Kevin Nash is sitting on his couch watching RAW. Heâ€™s got his feet up, drinking a beer and eating some pretzels. The long and the short of it is that Ace is a voyeur with a sick perversion and apparently cameras in Nashâ€™s home. Hunter points out that while Ace is the interim GM, Triple H is the COO. I have a juris doctorate and even Iâ€™m confused at the corporate structure at this point. Hunter tells Ace to give Nash the biggest contract ever, because that worked so well for WCW. Triple H wanders up to the top of the ramp where he just stands with his back to the curtain for an uncomfortably long amount of time before Nash blasts him from behind. With a sledgehammer. Donâ€™t let your minds go there.
Hunter decides to sell this sledgehammer blast like hypothermia, as he just starts convulsing and curling up into a ball. Ace threatens Nash with the intensity of George McFly, and comes just short of â€œHey you, get your damn hands off her!â€ as we fade toâ€¦
Weâ€™re back and Hunter is being loaded up into an ambulance. Nash wanders over with a sledgehammer, because the WWE has the worst security in the world. Apparently the WWEâ€™s safety is in the hands of Gus, the 92 year old man who is prone to take naps in his comfortable chair. See George Costanza, thatâ€™s why they canâ€™t be allowed to sit down. Anyway, Nash hauls the strapped-in Hunter off of the gurney and carefully props him up before blasting Triple H in the face. With a sledgehammer. Again, dirty minds, people. Luckily Hunterâ€™s nose broke his fall. The medics rush to his aid, with one moron asking if Hunter still has a pulse. Either he has zero medical training or heâ€™s plugging our site.
Weâ€™re back and we RELIVE everything we just saw, in case you forgot two beatdowns that youâ€™d swear youâ€™d already seen in 2003.
Randy Orton & Sheamus v. Christian & Cody Rhodes
Orton and Christian start out while Cole talks about how they were the Feud of the Summer that captured our imagination. Alright. Randy beats the hell out of Christian before tagging in Sheamus. Christian pulls the classy move of smacking Sheamus and then tagging in Cody. Just another example of why Christian is such a great heel. Sheamus beats the holy hell out of Cody as Michael Cole talks about Irish folklore with the passion and zeal of a beauty pageant announcer.
Weâ€™re back and Christian is now in control of Sheamus. Apparently Christian didnâ€™t take kindly to Sheamusâ€™s interesting facts about Ireland. Orton gets tagged in and double-teamed for a bit until he tags Sheamus back in so that he can hit the Drinking Problem backbreaker. Sheamus goes for the Brtuha Kick but Cody ducked. Christian tries to interfere but gets caught with an RKO and Sheamus finishes Cody with the Razorâ€™s Edge for the pin.
Well, that was just a whole bunch of folks going through the motions. I know the WWE is obsessed with the notion that any screen presence is good, but there was no incentive at all with this match. Wins and losses donâ€™t ever matter, so this was simply a â€œhey, remember these guys are here tooâ€ Smackdown match, which is fine but doesnâ€™t make the viewer feel like theyâ€™re seeing anything.
Johnny Ace and David Otunga are in the back. Ace is on the phone with Stephanie saying that nothing that is going wrong is his fault. Glad he has his attorney present. John Cena pops up in his variant black outfit and makes vaguely racist jokes about how David Otunga looks like Carlton Banks because apparently all black people look the same to Cena. It would explain why he was wearing those Stars & Bars for so long. Oh, and Ace books him in a tag match against Awesome Tooth.
Santino Marella w/ hair v. Dolph Ziggler w/ Kurt SwAngle and Vickie Guerrero
Santino is already in the ring, which has gotta be a good sign, right? Santino goes for his comedic cobra shtick early, it fails and Dolph squashes him like a bug before hitting the Zig Zag for the pin. After the match, SwAngle and Dolph do the Lordâ€™s work by stomping out Santino , but Mason Ryan, that blasphemous goof, makes the â€œsaveâ€. Thankfully, he didnâ€™t botch it.
The WWE is hell-bent on getting Mason Ryan over, even if itâ€™s at the expense of Ziggler, Swagger, Ryder, Marella, Air-Boom and whoever else is in the swirling midcard vortex of death. On the plus side, Vince is finally digging Dolph, so he may escape this relatively unscathedâ€¦assuming he doesnâ€™t get dropped on his skull.
The Bella Twins are not only still employed, but theyâ€™re on RAW! Zack Ryder runs by to tell them that heâ€™s John Cenaâ€™s tag partner. Ah, nothing like baiting the Internet.
Ricardo Rodriguez, complete with a black eye that looks like a horrible growth, does his usual ring announce shtick. Alberto Del Rio mocks the people in Spanish, which is something he probably should have done in Mexico so that they all realized he was a heel. He said after Ben-jance he is done with The Jonseena. Also, no one is better than him. Not even Kanyon.
This brings out CM Punk, who reminds us that he has yet to get a one-on-one match. Heâ€™s rebuffed by Del Rio, who points out that CM Punk has lost a lot as of late, and thus doesnâ€™t deserve to face such a strong paper champion. They get in each otherâ€™s faces, which brings out Johnny Super Ace, who decides to just go ahead and book them for Survivor Series. Ooh, heâ€™s such a heel. Punk decides to keep needling him about skateboards and whatnot (stealing Cenaâ€™s thunder in the process), so Ace wants an apology. Okay, the last GM was anti-lawsuits and the current GM is anti-insults. Prickly bunch.
Punk says that he respects Johnny Ace for going so far in this business with so little. Somewhere the Ultimate Warrior is livid that Ace stole his gimmick. Ace says heâ€™s now going to think for a week and decide if Punk should still get the title shot, so Punk takes it upon himself to jump Del Rio and beat the crap out of Rodriguez.
And here is the beginning of the complete and total misappropriation of the CM Punk character. Punk is now seen as an unnecessary instigator without a reason to fight. Heâ€™s poking and prodding Johnny Aceâ€¦who just gave him exactly what he wanted. This isnâ€™t the voiceless rebel sticking it to the machine. This is a cog in the machine trying to be a bigger cog. He started veering into that John Cena shticky, jokey guy. Punkâ€™s better when heâ€™s a guy with nothing to lose as opposed to a guy trying hard to be an instigator, because instead of Bugs Bunny weâ€™re getting Nelson. On the other hand, he did make a great Back to the Future II reference, so he gets points for style on that one.
Natalya v. Alicia Fox
I see weâ€™ve pushed the reset button on the Diva Division. It usually goes Alicia gets her ass kicked, Kelly and Eve save her, they feud with Beth and Natalya and it ends with a PPV match. Only here Alicia got the fluke pinfall, which in essence means a whole lot of nothing since theyâ€™re killing time until they can do Kelly/Beth. Smart move Gail Kim on leaving just when thereâ€™s an opening for a fresh female babyface.
John Slo-Mo-Rrison v. Wade Barrett
Thereâ€™s a Barrett Uprising, in case you hadnâ€™t heard. Hey, at least heâ€™s trying to get himself over. Wade and John have a spirited start to their match, until Wade tosses John into the barricade as we go toâ€¦.
They come back with a thrilling resthold. John and Wade go back and forth until Wade catches John with Wasteland off of a missed Flying Chuck for the win. At least these two seemed motivated despite not really being given a reason to be. Wade Barrett has always had the tools necessary to be a big player, so itâ€™ll be interesting if heâ€™ll have the patience to wait for his spot. If not, heâ€™ll pull a Morrison and take to Twitter until someone pushes him or fires him.
We get ANOTHER recap on Nash attacking Hunter. This leads to Michael Cole challenging Jim Ross to a Michael Cole Challenge, which hopefully Jim Ross will bypass like the kids on South Park and just stay home. On the plus side, if JR shows up and wins, Michael Cole will quit. So, you know, you got that going for ya. Oh yeah, and there were pictures of Jim Ross on fat peopleâ€™s bodies, because thatâ€™s why we tune into RAW.
Zack Ryder is in the back and heâ€™s excited to be in his match andâ€¦heâ€™s jumped by Miz and Truth. Man, Vince loves messing with Ryder as much as he loves messing with Jim Ross.
Miz and Truth come out to the ring and talk about how people have been getting got, because a catchphrase is a catchphrase, damnit.
John Cena v. The Awesome Tooth
Itâ€™s a handicap match where Cena still dominates 90% of it and hits the Five Moves of Mediocrity. Sounds about right. In the end, Truth hits Cena with a plastic water bottle for DQ. Short of flicking someone with a rubberband, thatâ€™s about as lame a finish as Iâ€™ve ever seen. They managed to make these two look like complete clowns mere moments after they were made to look like sociopathic monsters. There is such an inconsistency in how they are booked on a moment by moment basis that itâ€™s almost like if it doesnâ€™t involve Nash and Hunter then it isnâ€™t worth it.
After the match Ace lets Cena pick his partner for Survivor Series, and surprise surprise, itâ€™s The Rock. Well, it isnâ€™t like he was in promos all night or anything. And on a side note, if they donâ€™t do a 5-on-5 or a 4-on-4 then they are going to risk overexposing The Rock as well as blow a chance to give people the rub. A four on four with Cena, Orton, Sheamus & The Rock v. Miz, Truth, Christian and Rhodes would help a lot of people. But the question still remains, how does it help Triple H in the end?
This has been for your consideration.