Geez, I feel like I should talk about Punk hitting that fan on Monday? I mean that’s what we’re all talking about right? Who’s a fault? What does this mean for Punk and for the company? And all the other questions flying about the Internet. Well, honestly I don’t have much to say on the whole thing, certainly not a whole article’s worth. But I will mention this. Had this incident happened just a few years ago, I never would have seen that happen. Maybe somebody who had seen it happen in the split second on TV would have tried to convince me what happened, but I would never see the footage. But now, in the age of YouTube and camera phones, I’ve gotten to see Punk hit a fan from every conceivable angle, in slow motion, with different colorization to highlight people, and with NFL style drawings on the screen to depict the action. I don’t think I’ve seen once single punch in the WWE as many times as I’ve seen that one.
Now as Raw opened this week we got not one, but two segments that caused great concern, and the first opened up the show. Now I personally have always enjoyed Cena more that your average internet complainer (though probably less than your average 6-11 year old) I have always been willing to give the guy a little bit more leeway than others who will look for every moment to complain about Cena, is status as main face, and his existence in the company. However, looking at this pointless promo that opened up Raw, even I have nothing but negative things to say. Now on one hand I understand the idea that your first episode without Cena in the past few years gets terrible ratings, you get Cena back on the screen. But this resulted with a Cena who had nothing to say for his own feud and left to flounder through the rest of the locker room. What could possibly be the advantage of Cena cutting down Team Friendship (their true name) who has done nothing but produce some of the best WWE moments over the past few weeks? And Cena’s comments weren’t even about Team Friendship’s in ring work, or their ability to get along. No we got more goat comments. Its staggering that the same guy who can go toe to toe with the likes of Punk and Rock on the mic in fantastic promos, is the same guy who made goat noises in the ring like that.
Two segments later, we arrive at what was supposed to be a match between Brodus Clay and R-Truth, but because they are both faces, they decided to dance instead. Ignoring that it saddens me every time R-Truth comes out without a new conspiracy, I would like to point out that in the ring there were two wrestlers who’s gimmicks revolved around dancing (Truth’s before going crazy.) There were also two girls who do the bulk of the actual dancing for Brodus, and the entire segment was focused around the dancing of not these people but of an invisible boy. Things like this make me wonder if the removal of the head writer ever actually lead to a new writer, or just a vacant position.
But then, rather unexpectedly, something happened. And I credit this largely to Mr. McMahon coming back. As you can see by column title, I have always been a fan of the Mr. McMahon character. Now he’s never clicked as a face, the way he does when he’s in full blown heel mode, but the “Vince walk” is still there so I’ll take what I can get. But on top of that, we got Vince’s return to the ring, which resulted in one of the most oddly terrible, yet entertaining matches that I have seen in some time. While I don’t think anybody is running to the front of the line for defending Vince’s in ring skills, his willingness to still commit to the ring fighting is admirable. And while I don’t want to risk pushing it too far, Punk continues to be able to have an entertaining match with anybody. The wonderful out of control feeling of this match from the lack of any starting bell, to Vince desperately attacking Punk, and bleeding for it, to Puck acting scared of the Vince and stick combo, and actually resorting to a low blow. Even the running away worked until things went wrong. Not to suggest that I want this type of match every week to end the show, but on the rare occasion where it actually works for a genuinely entertaining Main Event, do that.
Unrelated thought: I have seen, many, many times now, Ryback successfully pick up wrestlers for his finisher. I have seen on more than one occasion Ryback pick up multiple wrestlers at the same time for that very same maneuver. I know that he can do it; he knows that he can do it; we’ve all seen him do it. But from this point forward, until the finisher is changed, every Ryback match is going to come with a moment where I am just waiting for a botch to happen. Thanks Tensai.