I’ve had to break up the routine format for the review because of the Slammy. All the awards are covered here. This review looks at the rest of Raw.
Dolph Ziggler vs. Seth Rollins
I keep saying this over and over again but Rollins and Ziggler are probably each other’s best match in the ring. Both of them are amazing wrestlers – they are fast, agile and sell like there’s no tomorrow. Those are the two men, who can make everyone else look awesome in the ring and put together they create a superhero feel.
Rollins was overwhelmed in the very beginning but quickly equalized the game. The one moment Rollins was in trouble, Mercury and Noble got involved. Dolph Ziggler fell off the top rope and Rollins was just waiting for him with a crubstomp.
Seth Rollins’ confidence is growing more and more, regardless of the fall of the Authority. This is what makes him such a good heel. He can deal with things on his own. He’ll adapt to the situation and will find a way to win at any cost, without any concern for fallen allies.
Stardust vs. Kofi Kingston
This match seemed to lack direction. The audience doesn’t yet understand how this rivalry came about and this shows through in the lack of fan participation. Yes, the crowd chants NEW DAY when orchestrated to but the spontaneous clapping and screaming throughout the match was scarce.
Stardust was engaging and expressive with his strange behavior. There was no shortage of hissing and growling, and screaming.
However, the win went to Kofi. His cross body from the top rope reached a truly impressive height.
Giving a clean victory to the New Day, which is a stable, that early in a feud against a tag team is not a smart move. If Gold and Stardust are to be taken as a threat at all, they need to be portrayed as vicious and unstoppable. If you want to know how, just see The Ascension vs. Hideo Itami for reference.
Seth Rollins/ Paul Heyman Backstage
Rollins asked J&J Security to leave because he was confident that he could deal with Heyman on his own. Then Rollins proceeded to threaten Brock’s title without sugarcoating anything.
Heyman then made sure to direct Rollins’s anger towards John Cena, instead of his client Brock Lesner.
This is why I like Seth Rollins. He’s brave. Yes, he uses the Authority, Kane or Mercury and Noble but that’s just showing his smarts. He’s a strategist but he doesn’t hide what he’s after and he’s confident he can get it.
What he just told Heyman could have easily been a promo of a face. It’s taken as a heel speech only because it was delivered by Rollins.
Charlotte vs. Natalya
Just to get this out of the way, yes, Tyson Kid was wearing a hoodie with cat ears on it.
Charlotte fits naturally on Raw. She didn’t look like a NXT rookie even the slightest. She felt like a queen in the ring. Her exchanges with Natalya were impressive and the audience soon got involved in the match.
Although Charlotte was in control throughout the match, she lost to a quick roll up. I would have liked to see her win but I guess it’s not the time yet.
Mark my words, Charlotte is coming up to the main roster very soon. She’ll probably drop the title to Sasha at NXT R Evolution and then come up. The Divas Division needs more women like her.
Bray Wyatt/ Dean Ambrose
Bray Wyatt is devolving. In the beginning, the WWE Universe was willing to listen to him and follow him, regardless of the fact that he was a heel. Now, the lights in the audience are less and less. The singing has also become a memory.
Wyatt hates Ambrose so much that he’s losing control. No cult leader ever succeeds if he reveals his hatred towards his potential followers. That’s exactly what Wyatt did. He said that he despises the WWE Universe. Bad move.
And then Dean Ambrose made his entrance in an ambulance with sirens, lights and smoke. He brought tables, ladders and chairs. The Lunatic Fringe took off the cast from around his neck and rushed into an attack.
Ambrose easily dominates Wyatt in the TLC setting. So much so that the Lunatic Fringe lied on the table with a chair on his chest, waiting for Wyatt to attack him and still had the time to turn things around when the Eater of Worlds took the bait.
Logic dictates that Wyatt will go over at TLC but I don’t see how. It won’t be clean that’s for sure. With the way Ambrose got under his skin, Wyatt will need to cheat to win.
John Cena Backstage
I almost got excited about Cena saying that he needs to think of stepping aside and letting young superstars shine and then Cena said that there’s no way he’ll do that any time soon. Sigh.
Erick Rowan vs. Luke Harper
Apparently, being a genius has become a legit part of Rowan’s gimmick. The new part of Harper’s gimmick is getting himself DQed and pretending to be angry with the referee. Guess who’s got the better gimmick?
The match didn’t last long. Luke Harper randomly took a ladder and attacked Rowan with it, which obviously got him DQed.
Erick Rowan answered by swinging the steps and Harper and almost took his head off with them.
I’m a bit confused as to why Harper and Rowan are against each other but since they are not really feuding I can’t get any answers. This is frustrating.
Naomi/ Jimmy Uso
The Usos were celebrating backstage and met Naomi. Jimmy told her that marrying her was the best thing that had happened to him. If there was a cute husband award, he’d be in the running after that one.
Naomi said she booked a screen test with Miz’ agent and got upset when Jimmy wanted to go with her. She took it as lack of trust in her when it actually was all about Jimmy being genuinely concerned about his wife.
Seth Green explained later in the show that during a screen test you get asked to put on a costume and act with another actor to see how well you’ll actually look in front of a camera. I can see Naomi being asked to make out with the Miz for her audition and then the video being used to distract Jimmy at TLC.
Lana and Rusev came out to make fun of the USA for the sake of it. Swagger wasn’t impressed and attacked Rusev.
Officials were needed to get the Big Russian freed from the Patriot Lock. Rusev was screaming that Swagger broke his leg. His facial expression made me cringe. This guy sells well.
I’m not sold on Swagger’s mic skills. He had to deliver one line and it sounded fake. That will ruin his chances of a push.
The Usos & Ryback vs. Kane & Miz & Mizdow
This was a typical 6 men tag put together to acknowledge two separate feuds without giving them any development whatsoever. The backstage segment with Naomi was more useful than that.
After the usual chaotic ending, Ryback hit the Miz with the Shell Shock and won.
The two thing that came as obvious conclusions from the match are that Mizdow was the definite fan favourite and that Jimmy couldn’t keep his temper in check.
AJ vs. Summer Rae
I was positively surprised by Summer. She has obviously spent some time training because her in-ring work has gotten better. And she didn’t forget to add her normal taunting.
As expected for the Raw before a pay-per-view, AJ won, using the Black Widow.
I don’t expect Nikki to go down at TLC. The title won’t be for Paige. The Bellas will toss it to one another for a while before Charlotte takes it off their hands.
Big Show vs. John Cena
This match also didn’t last long. Cena was doing the “U can’t SEE me”; Big Show grabbed him for a chokeslam; Cena reversed with and AA and the Rollins, accompanied by J&J Security interfered and caused another DQ.
And once again, in the end of the show, Team Cena vs. Team Authority exchanged blows. Erick Rowan, Luke Harper, Dolph Ziggler, Kane and Ryback all joined the party. This time the heels prevailed.
Cena got triple power bombed by Rollins and his bodyguards on the announce table. Rollins should really stop using this move. It’s disrespectful to the Shield. That’s worse than saying that he hates Christmas!
What did you think of this week’s Raw? Share your thoughts in the comment section, on FB or Twitter?