The SmarK RAW Rant – 12.09.13
If only all awards shows could be edited down to 90 minutes for Hulu before airing. The Slammy open, presented like an awards show intro as if anyone watching this show would be a new viewer, is a very different animal. I think probably if I was a new viewer the first question I’d have would be “What the hell is the difference between the World heavyweight title and the WWE title?”
Live from Seattle, WA
Your hosts are Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler & JBL
Daniel Bryan v. Fandango
Bryan gets a monster reaction and hopefully they’re smart enough to just let him squash the shit out of Fandango. Fandango puts him down with a knee for two and adds a suplex for two. And we take a break already. REALLY? Two minutes into the show? Back with Bryan making the comeback with the kicks, and they FINALLY let him hit the last one so the crowd can finish the “Yes” chant. Usually the heel ducks it for some reason. Bryan misses the corner and Fandango gets a Falcon Arrow for two. To the top, but the legdrop misses and Bryan finishes with the headbutt and Goat 2 Sleep at 5:40. Been a long time since they’ve let Bryan cut loose and destroy some geek. ** The Wyatts pop up on the screen afterwards, still asking him to join. I’m just not feeling this feud.
The New Age Outlaws present the LOL Moment Slammy. Nominees include Vickie getting fired (for a week), Titus puking, comedy with the Cobra, and the Rock serenading Vickie. The winner there is clear because Rock’s song was the only thing not completely embarrassing as a fan, but we still take another break before announcing it.
Santino v. Damien Sandow
They engage in some sports entertaining and Sandow blocks the Cobra and finishes with the full nelson slam at 2:20. I want to echo the idea of whoever suggested that Sandow actually cashed in a fake briefcase, and could shock everyone by retrieving the real one from the river and cashing in again once he’s been rebuilt.
The Shield presents Double Cross of the Year (and Dean Ambrose is aware of how good he looks). Dean subtly cutting off Roman is a nice touch. Nominees are: Mark Henry’s awesome turn on Cena, Shawn superkicking Bryan, Punk and Heyman splitting at Money in the Bank, and Hunter stealing the belt from Bryan. Shawn wins, and Ambrose’s little facial tics and mannerisms continue to be fantastic.
The Bella Twins win Diva of the Year and thankfully it’s edited down to nothing.
Cody Rhodes, Goldust, Big Show & Rey Mysterio v. Ryback, Curtis Axel, Antonio Cesaro & Jack Swagger
Apparently the Heyman Guys are now RYBAXEL! Sounds like an erectile dysfunction drug. Ryback throws Mysterio around, but Show pounds him in the corner and we take a break. Back with Goldust doing what he does best and taking a shitkicking in the heel corner. Cesaro with a double stomp for two, but Goldust gets a backslide for two. Powerslam, and he hits the Americans with a double DDT and makes the hot tag to Cody. The heels cutting off the ring is such an underused old school technique. Goldust is just so goddamn good in this role that I wish they had a better array of heel teams for him to get beat up by. Cody with a moonsault on Axel for two, and Big Show destroys everything in sight, leading to Rey finishing Axel with the 619 at 9:00. Very fun match. **3/4
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Shawn Michaels awards Superstar of the Year, which should probably be renamed the HB Shizzle. Nominees are Brock Lesnar, CM Punk, Big Show, John Cena, Randy Orton and Daniel Bryan. Bryan wins and tries get “HB Shizzle” over, but FETCH IS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN.
CM Punk v. Dean Ambrose
We’re randomly joined in progress here, so I’m assuming they cut out a big chunk of stuff before the break. We pick it up with Punk trying a bodypress and landing on Ambrose’s knee, thus hurting his ribs. Ambrose works him over, but misses a charge and hits the post. Reigns is UNIMPRESSED with Ambrose’s failure to close. Ambrose bails to regroup and Punk hits him with a dive, and we take another break. Back with Punk making the comeback and hitting a high kick for two. Ambrose gets a cheapshot and dumps him, but the Shield leaves him be. Ambrose bitches them out, so they leave. Back in, Punk hits the GTS to finish at 12:00 aired. Reigns destroys him with the spear afterwards for good measure, as again I wonder why I would want to pay $60 to see Punk get beaten 3-on-1? ***
Mick Foley presents the Extreme Moment of the Year. Choices include The Shield taking out Undertaker, Punk taking out Heyman, Ryback putting Cena through a stage, and the Wyatts attacking Kane. Punk wins, plugs the PPV, and we’re out.
The Wyatt Family v. The Uso Family
The Usos hit dives onto the Wyatt while JBL yells their catchphrase like a dork, apparently trying to tone down the uber-heel thing from last week. And we take a break. Back with Jimmy rolling up Harper for two and going up with the flying splash for two. Rowan sends the other Uso into the table, and Harper finishes Jimmy with the lariat at 5:32. JBL approves of the clothesline. Not much to this one. ½*
Bret Hart presents Match of the Year. Nominees are Punk v. Undertaker, Rhodeses v. The Shield, HHH v. Brock cage match (really?), and Cena v. Rock. Cena wins (I’m sense some malfeasance in the voting practices there) and the crowd boos that one out of the building.
The Ascension Ceremony! They sure do love their ceremonies and contract signings, don’t they? The ring is filled with former champions, and Punk cracks up every time Stephanie puts Hunter over. So Hunter cuts a self-important promo and the crowd totally hijacks the segment by chanting for Daniel Bryan. Good, tell these numbskulls what you think of the booking. Hunter and Orton continue their boring prattle, trying to talk LOUDER AND LOUDER over the crowd who wants Daniel Bryan. Also, 10 points for the “Okada > Cena” sign in the background. Cena actually rolls with the crowd, using Bryan as an example of someone who had to work for his spot, unlike Orton, who is “sheltered by the best performer in the business.” He means HHH, you see. Pardon me while I vomit all over my iPad. Cena cuts a pretty awesome promo about the match, however, and offers the handshake to Orton, triggering a brawl. And then it goes crazy, with Hunter pulling them apart, Punk sucker-punching Hunter, HBK superkicking Punk, Bryan getting his revenge on Shawn with the knee, and then Orton colliding with Stephanie and realizing that, oh shit, he’s fucked now. HHH adds a Pedigree for him, and we leave with Cena standing with the Authority as Orton is well and truly in trouble now. I don’t know if they were intentionally teasing Evil D-X v. IndyPowers as the Wrestlemania blowoff, but that’s sure as hell where they should be going with it now.
Mostly a fun and fast-paced show with great crowd reactions and an INSANE ending that will hopefully pay off somehow. Thumbs up this week!