Welcome once again to the weekly Raw review, I’m Dan (as I usually am) bringing you the rundown, analysis and warm takes of your three hour Monday night programming. Extreme Rules is fast-approaching with only a few weeks remaining until the event holding the Reigns/Styles rematch takes place. Not much else to say, let’s just get right to it.
Jericho kicks it off with the Highlight Reel, with the broken Mitch on a stool. Jericho says Ambrose isn’t here tonight and may not be here ever again thanks to Chris Jericho. Jericho plays a slideshow of social media posts about Mitch the Plant and says there’s nothing funny about what he did to Ambrose. Jericho understands why people relate to Ambrose, it’s because he’s a loser and a slob and Jericho can’t relate to that because he’s a legend. Jericho gives them ‘The Gift of Jericho’ and poses and is interrupted by Big Cass, coming out to a huge pop. Cass says if he ever hands him the Gift of Jericho you better give him the receipt cause he’ll head right to the store and return it. Cass says Jericho doesn’t understand what the New Era is, it’s a warning, and BIG CASS has arrived and Jericho is in his way. Jericho tells Cass to run to the hospital and check on his buddy Enzo who’s in the same wing as Dean Ambrose. Big Cass towers over Jericho and wants a fight. Jericho says he’s the best in the world but Cass says he’s 7 foot tall… and you can’t teach that. Jericho takes off his jacket meancingly, throws it over his shoulder and leaves. Big Cass delivers the heavenly sermon, there’s only one word to describe Jericho… SAAAAWFT. Jericho doesn’t take kindly to that, jumping back on the apron but getting met with a crushing big boot. Cass stands tall to end the opening segment. Big Cass’ singles push in Enzo’s absence is a wonderful thing.
Jericho complains to Steph backstage about this all being Shane’s fault and Steph says Shane is doing a great job, and puts Jericho against Big Cass tonight in the MAIN EVENT to prove that he’s not sawft.
If there’s ever a way to make someone lose interest in a new dude, it’s certainly this way. The Ziggler/Corbin feud is all bad at this point considering the horrendous decision to have Ziggler win at Payback, just put it in the grave and move on. I love Big Banter but I cannot stand Ziggler at this stage, his shit hair metal gimmick and terrible comedic attempts make me want to jump into a frozen lake. Corbin hit a real good rendition of his Marilyn Manson themed move and finished the geek off with the End of Days. Let’s move on with Corbin now, get him in a good feud. Having him chase the US title should have been their first move.
Styles, Karl and Gallows are backstage, talking about their 6 man match tonight against Reigns & The Usos, officially naming themselves ‘The Club’ which is just.. terrible. C’mon, spin some originality on it at least. ‘The Club’ is a clear copyright avoider but it ain’t gonna look good on t-shirts.
All of this is bad. R-Truth won with the Little Jimmy, I think it’s still called that right? Does it matter? Not at all.
Miz, Owens, Cesaro and Zayn are arguing backstage about who’s getting the shot at the IC title, Zayn challenges Miz to a match, if he loses he’s goes to the back of the line, but if he wins, it’s a fatal-4-way at Extreme Rules for the belt.
It’s kind of astounding that Paige is doing nothing in the company right now, and hasn’t been for a while really. She’s just kinda there, but she still gets one of the biggest pops, she’s always over. A relatively solid match nonetheless, the ending saw some ridiculous booking with Nattie stopping Charlotte from cheating and Ric Flair came out to intefere but Shane had him taken away by an army of referees, and Paige won with a roll-up off the distraction. Yeesh.
Reaaal good match between these two, both on their game tonight. Miz playing a great heel and Zayn as always playing the brilliant underdog. Miz using roll-ups and distractions by Maryse to nearly steal a three count but Zayn wouldn’t let it happen. Zayn escapes a figure-four by Miz and manages to get Miz in the corner, hitting the Helluva Kick to win the match, while still selling the leg. God bless Sami Zayn. That makes the fatal-4-way official at Extreme Rules and what a hoot that should be.
Becky is backstage talking about her feud with Emma and Emma interrupts, distracting her to get attacked from behind by none other than Dana Brooke~! Emma reminds Becky of who Dana is as Dana pats her head to end the segment. Well, that’s a surprising debut, but I’m okay with it. Emma & Dana were great together in NXT so it should work just as well on the main.
A vignette with inspirational music plays for Darren Young making a speech, saying he needs someone to lift him higher, and Bob Backlund comes into frame. Darren asks him to be his coach and the logo “Make Darren Young Great Again” shows. What the FUCK?
Ryder is backstage with Shane and wants another shot at the IC title, Owens comes into frame and is tired of people who don’t deserve shots complaining their way into getting them. Big Kev banters Ryder and Shane makes a match between them, if Ryder wins he takes KO’s spot in the fatal-4-way.
So this match was a thing. Sin Cara got the hope spots using his speed to outmaneuver Rusev until Rusev caught him off a springboard and slammed him. Rusev was completely in control, until Lana for some reason started to get in the ring, distracting the ref and Kalisto hit a kick on Rusev for Sin Cara to roll him up and win. So why the holy hell did Lana do that? That was a next level shite distraction finish, and why does Rusev need to look like a geek going into a title match? No answers here, only more questions folks.
The Usos get the advantage over Karl in the earlygoings with their usual offense, complete with dabs, Jey looks to finish Karl but Gallows nails him with a right hand and Karl rolls up Jey to eliminate him. AJ tags in but Karl and Gallows insist that they got it all under control. Karl stomps out Jimmy and taunts him, but Jimmy grabs him in a small package out of nowhere to eliminate him quickly. In a hilarious turn of events, Jimmy was eliminated DURING COMMERCIAL. Come on, man. There’s not even an app anymore so there’s no excuse for that. Gallows is eliminated by Reigns after a quick flurry and it’s down to Styles and Reigns who go after each other right off the bat, a great back and forth between the two, spilling to the outside. Karl and Gallows come outta nowhere, hitting Reigns with a chair to cause the DQ and a massive brawl breaks out. Reigns spears both Karl and Gallows and has a staredown with Styles while he’s holding the chair. Reigns drops the chair and slides it to Styles, inviting him to use it but Styles slides it right back to him. A fierce staredown into Styles being the one to leave. This feud is on fire, it’s got ‘Mania levels of heat, the crowd went crazy for everything in this segment. A great build to the Extreme Rules match with the teasing of the chair as well, just great stuff.
Well, poor Ryder gets some hope in this match, hitting a sequence of moves but inevitably getting crushed by Owens, who puts him out with a pop-up powerbomb rather quickly.
New Day are out here to cut a promo on the Vaudevillains. Kofi brought out the very last Booty-O from ‘Mania and Xavier even sung about it in the tune of A Whole New World. Big E says The Vaudevillains are from a bygone era that.. wasn’t very kind to people like them.. iPhone users! God bless, the crowd went real awkwardly quiet after Big E paused there. You gotta love the grasp that New Day has over every crowd. The Dudleyz interrupt their New Day Rocks dance, and thus we have this match. A nothing match that is interrupted by The Vaudevillains who attack New Day, giving D-Von the opportunity to nail a lariat on Kofi to win the match. The Vaudevillains hit the Whirling Dirvish and stand tall.
Well, Big Cass vs. Jericho was supposed to be a thing but Jericho got attacked during his entrance and someone stole his jacket in the dark, putting it on and moving backwards down the ramp and into the ring. I worked myself into a complete shoot and got hyped thinking it was Finn debuting but nope, just Ambrose. They turned the lights on and you could recognize that greasy hair from anywhere. Ambrose starts ripping up Jericho’s jacket and Jericho runs down to attack him. They fight until Jericho runs into an angry Big Cass who throws him into the ring and into a Dirty Deeds from Ambrose. Ambrose starts cutting up Jericho’s jacket with a scissors. Steph and Shane are backstage discussing the end of Raw, Shane leaves and Steph grabs the picture of Shane & Vince and stares at it oddly. An unnecessary random segment to clearly fill time as they’ve realized there’s still a bit too much time to fill, and we go back to Ambrose on the ramp while Jericho is throwing a tantrum in the ring over his jacket.
The coldest finish to Raw in a long while, no reason that it shouldn’t have ended with the awesome ending to the 6-man tag, which was the best part of this pretty average Raw. A lot of nothing in between some good things, Zayn/Miz was good, and Dana Brooke’s debut was unexpected but very cool. The real beauty that WWE has right now is this Reigns/Styles feud that is off the charts with hype, the build-up has been stellar and there’s just so much excitement when those two face off, they’ve absolutely struck gold with this one. Thanks as always for reading.