Kue Vs. Pulse: On “Harrak’s Thoughts (WWE Raw 01/05/2015)”

Long time no see, friends. Though I’ve been very much involved in the podcast scene with my partner Blair on “Trashy Ring Attire” (the latest episode of which can be found here), I’ve been rather absent from Pulse when it comes to articles and the like. However, I have definitely been keeping up with Pulse’s great array of writers and columns, and I still very much consider myself a proud member of the community.

That said, on occasion, some thoughts spewed by my fellow writers tend to irk me to the point where I can’t go without saying something or other about it. And on this particular instance, Mr. Matthew Harrak, whose writing and approach to wrestling I very much enjoy, had an entire article (which you can read here) that had me staring blankly at the screen wondering if we were watching the same show. I couldn’t allow this to go unanswered. And thus, “Kue vs. Pulse” makes a return.

And again, Matt, nothing but the utmost respect for you, my friend.


 

“#1~ I finally back from injury and apparently so is RAW! A full intro video and a round of pyro does a LOT to hype up a live crowd and television audience. The opening segment wasn’t too long and was necessary. I have no idea where the idea of Seth Rollins being in the title match at the Rumble came from but it’s interesting. If for nothing else that it gives Rollins more of an opportunity to cash in his briefcase. Of course, it does throw a wrench into Royal Rumble’s tag line of “The Final Chapter” referring to John Cena versus Brock Lesnar.”

First of all, welcome back, sir. I’m glad you’re recovering well. That said, why does the briefcase matter here? Rollins is already part of the match. His opportunity to win the title is sans MITB. As for the tagline, honestly, fuck the tagline. If I have to sit through another Lesnar/Cena match where we have to pretend Summerslam didn’t happen, I’m pretty sure wrestling has taken retconning to levels even the X-Men comics are afraid to go.

#2~ Bad News Barrett and Dolph Ziggler put on another great Intercontinental Championship match. Barrett is another solid choice for champion, especially if there are bigger things for Dolph Ziggler. Either way, Barrett was on a role as IC Champion when he was sidelined with an injury. Here’s hoping he can pick up where he left off.

The match was okay at best. And I was actually a fan of the ‘Bad News Barrett’ gimmick. But to say the gimmick has any longevity to it is plain gullibility. Blair and I have been addressing this on TRA since we’ve started the podcast, but Barrett is no longer, by comparison, a “solid” choice for anything, especially with the roster we have now. Anyone from Cesaro, Tyson Kidd, Erik Rowan, Luke Harper, Bray Wyatt (who has yet to win a singles title), Sami Zayn, Adrian Neville, etc are far more solid picks to be the next IC champ. Yes, the ‘bad news’ gimmick was enjoyable, but everything has a lifespan, and that shit is on its deathbed.

#3~ The Ascension are wrestling two local yokels! It’s been so long since this has happened on RAW! It’s priceless!

Agreed. This was somewhat nostalgic. Hopefully, though, it won’t be too repetitive in the next coming weeks. The best way to build a new wrestler or team isn’t to have them run through jobbers, but a meaningful feud and good matches.

#4~ While the winner of the match was rather head-scratching, the Ambulance Match between Dean Ambrose and Bray Wyatt was probably the best match of the feud. There were just enough high-spots, stiff weapon blows and finishers to make this match feel like an abbreviated PPV match on RAW. Wyatt/Ambrose disappointed from the word go so this match at least ended the painful feud on a good note.

Are you…are you being sincere here? You back Barrett as a “solid champ”, but you thought this feud was painful? This feud produced better matches than just about any feud in WWE during 2014, save Rollins/Ambrose and Shield/Evolution. Have you been so conditioned to convoluted and unneccesary plot structure in a feud that the concept of two guys who just don’t like each other and put on some damn entertaining matches is stifling?

See, this is what I don’t get about people who criticize this rivalry. You all complain about the build being weak, probably due to this lacking the ridiculous complexity of most overrated feuds in wrestling for the past ten years, yet you have the same complaint about the endings of these matches (Ambrose being blinded by the broken TV monitor, Bray Wyatt tactically hitting Sister Abigail twice outside of the ambulance). Ambrose’s character is reckless to a fault, and the way he’s lost his matches with Wyatt backs this perfectly. Not only that, but Wyatt is a tactician to accomplish his own ends. And the way he’s won these matches exemplify that as well. Not only do we not see two characters like this ever, who are similar enough, but are still complete foils of each other, but the in-ring character building through these subtle nuances is NEVER seen. That, and the matches were amazing.

The only thing painful about this feud is how much it’s shown how conditioned wrestling critics have become to the mediocre WWE product in the past decade to the point were anything progressive and different is seen as foreign and “painful”.

#5~ Where the hell has this Booker T been? He’s composed, intelligent and storyline driven on commentary! Plus, I haven’t heard a single bit of gibberish come out of his mouth tonight. If this was how Booker T originally treated his stint as a color commentator, maybe it would have lasted longer than a (very, very brutal) year.

This was the same Booker T as always. The only difference is, back when he first was brought on as an announcer, it was clear he made no effort to learn any characters or storylines before he began commentating. Other than that, no improvement whatsoever.

#6~ Well that segment went over like a wet balloon. Of course The Authority was going to fire Team Cena, they said they would. And of course all three of them will be in the Royal Rumble somehow. What would have been interesting was if all three guys turned around and laid Cena out. Imagine a freshly turned Dolph Ziggler squaring off against Cena? THAT would be a WrestleMania feud. Well, at least we’re moving forward with some sort of build for the Royal Rumble… even though we have no idea what.

Why would Ziggler/Cena be a good ‘Mania feud? You do know how the “Cena vs. (ANYONE who isn’t the Rock)” Wrestlemania feud tends to end, right?

And what build did we get for the Rumble? The only noteworthy thing about the damn match that happened all night is that Bryan is in it. This segment sucked, yes, and I applaud your attempt to see a silver lining, but there isn’t one. Oh, wait, Ryback got fired, right? I stand corrected.


Thank you to Pulse for letting me rant from time to time on here, and thank you to Harrak for being a great sport. Hopefully, we can get him on an upcoming episode of TRA (hint, hint).

Until next time, that’s my Kue to bounce.

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