I had my monthly medieval meeting this evening, so this is later than I wanted it to be, so I'm going to jump right in.
I truly believe that Mitch 'Big M' is the only person I know who l really doesn't like New Day, and since he reviews SmackDown, he doesn't get a chance to get it out of his system. So, this week, I offered him the New Day segment and match. I'm putting in the disclaimer that whatever he writes is not the views of me, Richard Gray, or WNW, so please react accordingly. And, look at it this way, sometimes it's good to look at things from a different angle. Some weeks I feel like a broken record when a Superstar or team myself, and most everyone else, loves does something great, which they do almost every week. They're fun, exciting, and haven't become boring or horrible. It's time to let Big M have his moment to really get out his issues with New Day in the RIB, not just in comments.
It's about as objective as a Newcorp publication, but It’s honest.
In Ring Segment > A-
The fans in attendance didn't seem as on point as KO and Jericho were in this segment. They were amazing here. The two of them together are great, right up there with some of the best duos. Yes, they are right up there with Trip and HBK, who are the two best on mic together – in my humble opinion. Their chemistry is great, and while I know they will eventually get mad at each other and feud, I'm going to be bummed when it happens, because it will be the end of this greatness.
Rollins is good on mic, and got a few great comments in, and that whole 'sparkle crotch' thing, but it was still mostly about KO and Jericho, because they're that great. And as to Jericho's trunks, last week I was thinking that the lack of sparkles in his crotch, with sparkles all over the rest, made him look like he was wearing an old-fashioned sanitary belt. Sorry I went there, but that's exactly what it makes me think of.
Rollins vs Jericho > B
The 'Sparkle Crotch' chants have been hysterical. Wonder if it will continue after this episode of Raw. Honestly hope it does, because it's one of the funnier chants we've heard in a while. Just another way Creative has been dropping the ball lately.
I cannot say this started off as a barn burner. I really expected more from Jericho and Rollins here. I know Jericho isn't what he used to be in the ring, but I expected more than this. Things picked up when KO came out to the ring and started messing with Rollins. Though KO looked sad when Jericho, again, took the pedigree. I wonder what will happen between the besties after this one!
Winner – Rollins
Sit-Down > B-
Charlotte proved here that she can talk, be a heel, and get across as a heel, without screeching and pissing off all the fans. She was really solid here. I enjoy Lita interviewing her, and the questions asked. That being said, it could have been Bayley or Becky in the HIAC with Sasha Banks and I would have been buying tickets. I'm not sure I can say the same for Charlotte. I probably would, because it's a groundbreaking match, but it's Sasha that really has me excited. Charlotte is a Flair, she can go in that ring, but she doesn't have the charisma to carry enough. In the ring she's more facially expressive than most of the women, but her interviews and promos make it that much harder for me to like or loathe her. This was better, but she was scripted to within an inch of her life. I want to see heel Charlotte when she's not reciting the script word for word. I know that's how the WWE is these days for most of the Superstars, but I think she would be better if she had more leeway.
Again, this was better than she's been much of the time on mic, but she still felt flat and uninteresting, no charisma at all.
R-Truth & Goldust & Henry vs Shining Stars & Titus Brand > D+
How to make Goldust and R-Truth even more ineffectual? Put them in the ring with Shining Stars. Ugh! Further, O'Neil's direction is totally daft. Henry is still looking rather svelte. I never thought he'd be able to maintain this weight. Man likes his munchies. When he was running with Tony Atlas years ago, it was because Atlas was doubling as his nutritionist and keeping Henry away from the Ho-Hos.
It was nice to see Henry get the hot tag and the win, but that won't be lasting much longer. I'm shocked he's still working the ring after all the years he's been with the WWE. That being said, with all the WWE I've been watching, there were HUGE chunks of time that Henry was nowhere to be found on either brand. What was he doing during those years at a time? I hadn't realized that he missed such large chunks of time on WWE TV.
Winners – Henry & R-Truth & Goldust
Backstage Segment > B+
The real start of the issues between Jericho and KO. Almost calling him a stupid idiot was great! But even better was Steph getting all up in their business over it all. She's grown so much through the years, and I so enjoy watching the different facets and levels of the Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley character.
In Ring Segment > F!
Disclaimer: These views are entirely my own. I realise few people agree with me, and that’s fine. But I must get all of this off my chest once and for all.
I HATE the bloody New Day…there I said it! I’m saying what no one is willing to say about them! They are terrible (the gimmick, not the individuals). I have hated their gimmick from the very day I first saw the video promos for it years ago. Video promos which were somewhat racist if you remember.
I hate absolutely everything about their gimmick! I hate the childish my little pony references on all their merchandise. I hate their stupid cereal that they shill out at every opportunity. I hate the fact that so many fans seemingly love them. I hate that stupid bloody trombone they call “Francisca”. I hate that they have been the Raw Tag Team champs for over four hundred and twenty agonisingly long days. I hate that they will most likely beat Demolition’s record for longest Tag Team Title reign in WWE. I hate that they have buried the entire Tag Team Division on Raw. And most of all, I hate their stupid bloody promos that somehow get worse every week. From the childish playground insults to the seamless pop culture references I always feel like tearing my ears off every time I hear them speak.
In closing, I HATE THE NEW DAY! (The gimmick, not the individuals!) And they will always get an F in every segment of theirs I will ever be given the opportunity to grade.
Big E vs Cesaro > D-
In case I’ve been too subtle, I hate the New Day’s gimmick with a passion. BUT…I do see a lot of talent in the individuals that make up the group! Big E is a very solid in-ring worker who deserves a big solo push. Xavier Woods is also a great worker but hasn’t had too many opportunities to showcase what he can do. Kofi Kingston should be drafted to Smackdown Live to have a gatekeeper role in-between the mid card and the main event.
But, as soon as anyone of them have a match, all I can think is “Why doesn’t someone shove a brick in the bloody trombone?” I can’t get invested in anything these guys do in the ring because there is always at least one of them at ringside making a fool of themselves. I seriously have an ongoing fantasy of the Young Bucks jumping the guard rail and starting a superkick party on all their arses. With Steve Corino walking up the ramp with a live microphone screaming out “SUPERKICK” after every divine hit to a New Day members face!
I just can’t get invested in their matches, and that’s not fair to the poor buggers that have to put them over every bloody week. Last week that sad duty went to Ceasaro who will seemingly never get his due from WWE’s higher-ups. And this week his “court appointed tag partner” as Kofi put it was made to put a New Day member over.
The only reason this match doesn’t get a big fat F is due to Cesaro actually entertaining me with his Facebook Live revenge on Sheamus.
Winner – Big E
Bo vs Neville > C+
I'm really liking this new Bo. He's kind of scary, and I like it. Axel as comic relief is odd, but I think I like it.
The best thing is that Bo has personality, direction, and is 100% committed to it all. I wish Neville could do the same, because he could be huge if he found a personality. It would also be nice if these Denver fans found a clue and their voices. They have been so quiet, other than for the most obvious chants and reactions. Why would anyone go to a show and not get involved? Honestly, it would have to be a pretty horrible show for me to not be chanting and cheering, and if it was THAT bad, I'd be raising heck and getting all over the Superstars, Creative, and booking. I go to a show for entertainment, and that means I will be LOUD in one way or another!
Why did Bo attack Axel? I guess he's just that pissed and intense, but there was little reason behind it. Okay, this feud could be good, but I prefer a reason for a feud, not just someone being intense and pissy.
Winner – Bo
Dana vs Bayley > C-
Dana is quite the powerhouse! That flip she did on the stage was impressive. Though I was worried about the gaping around the legs of her singlet. I thought there might be a wardrobe malfunction.
And being a powerhouse, she was all over Bayley. Bayley might have the moves, but Dana is muscle! She's getting better in the ring, though looked a bit too stiff and reckless to me. I wonder if, at some point, Dana facing Nia Jax would be a good thing. When they're both more sure in the ring. Of course Bayley is the much better wrestler of the two, but power won out on this one. Not sure where they're going with this, but I'm interested to see. I wish we could get through a Dana match without an obvious botch. Here's to hoping that Bayley comes out of this clean and ends up facing Sasha for the WWE Women's Championship very soon.
Winner – Dana
Satellite > D-
Why was Heyman at WWE Studios and not live in Denver? Nothing he said was shocking. Honestly, this was a throwaway segment for me. Heyman said the same things again. Yes, he's eloquent, but there's only so many times he can say the same things, especially when he's nowhere near any action that could possibly happen. BORING!
Strowman vs 3 Jobbers > D
Seeing these three guys in the ring with Strowman makes me think of Andre's line in The Princess Bride where Andre says something about not being used to fighting only one guy. But Strowman, you are no Andre The Giant.
All that being said, where's Joe? When is going to take Strowman out? I'm bored.
Winner – Strowman
In Ring Segment > B-
I had to break Sami Zayn off from that match, because Sami deserves so much more than that match ever would. All that hope and that's all we got from Strowman and Sami? I guess it's a start...
Backstage Segment > A
Sami was fantastic here. Direct and to the point!
In Ring Segment > D-
Lana is amazing. She's fantastic at what she does for Rusev. He's now able to get over on his own, but why have him do it when she's so amazing? And then the segment went right down the hill. They were trying so hard, but it was falling so flat. What a mess. Reigns actually helped this segment a bit. While over-scripted, he at least came off pretty well.
The best part was Lana being pushed out of the way by her husband so he could attack Reigns. This is the HIAC I'm least interested in seeing, but it could pan out better. Well, it will pan out better than this, mostly because they won't be talking!
Anderson vs Cass > A&C
Well, that match was short and to the point. Not at all thrilling. The best part was Enzo and Cass on mic. Guess they're expecting Goldberg to carry the ratings for this entire show.
Winner – Cass
Backstage Segment > C+
I adore The Brian Kendrick, but TJP is too squeaky clean for me. I also think that TBK saying the same thing, over and over, that this is his last chance. I know TBK has more substance than the lines they've been giving him to spew back out.
Sit-Down > A-
Sasha has so much more charisma than Charlotte, and so much more than Lita. Okay, so Lita has so much more charisma now than she did on mic when she was a Diva, and it's great to see, but Sasha is still way out of her league. I love Sasha, and she makes me want to spend money to see her live. Seeing her in a groundbreaking match is that much better, but she's been at the top of my list to see since I first saw her ring work in NXT. Her persona makes her that much greater, and I'm thrilled to see that she does as well in an interview setting as she does full on in the ring.
6 Man CW Match > A-
This was a solid Cruiserweight Match, and absolutely better than at least one from last week. I'm worried that McMahon has soured on the CWs, because they could really help dig Raw out of the three hour travesty that they've buried themselves in. Of course the fans are not going to pop for them right off the bat, it's the way things work. Casual WWE fans, those without the WWE Network, are not going to know who these guys are until they're developed on Raw. Normally the top guys brought up from NXT are recognizable to many, if not most. That means that the fans who don't know them are swept up in the excitement of those around them in the stands, so most of the bigger names are over quickly. The CWs are a whole other kettle of fish, and McMahon needs to give them a bit of leeway so they have time to get over! I don't get him, he lets The Vaudevillains and The Ascension keep trying, but the CWs are already catching solid negativity.
Winners – Kendrick & heels
Goldberg! > A+
I was truly impressed by Goldberg's genuine love of the fans, especially the kids. I think that's what won him over with the fans beyond the opening chants. We are so used to Brock Lesnar who is only there for two reasons (yes, I'll admit that he's there for more than the money), who shows so little to the fans that we are left feeling empty and less than satisfied whenever we see him. Yes, chanting 'Suplex City' is fun, but it only goes so far when Heyman has to do all the work getting BL over on mic, and BL ends up needing to be carried through almost every match (obvious even before Ambrose said it), and injuring the bright young Superstars who should be getting paid better, yet he's getting insane amounts of money that he truly doesn't earn. Imagine what paydays would look like for the top Superstars – KO, Rollins, Ambrose, AJ, Bray, Big E, Joe, Sasha, Charlotte, Bayley, Becky, Slater, Cass, etc! I'm so disgruntled over BL that I can barely stomach when he's on TV.
But Goldberg, the man I didn't want back after the horrible match he had with BL at WrestleMania XX (my favorite WM), and knowing what a primo uomo he was backstage. In some ways I couldn't blame him after the way he was handled and booked in WCW, but that's why he only lasted a year in the WWE. His prissy, the world revolves around me, attitude upset everyone, and he didn't last. I was worried that we would be getting that man back in the WWE this time around, but he was charismatic, humble, endearing, and truly seems to care about the fans and his final time in the WWE. Yes, a high paying contract helps, but it's rather hard to fake it if you really don't feel it. Orton has proven that many times through the years. Goldberg was so much more, and so much better than I expected he could be, and for that I'm thrilled that he's back for a brief run.
All that being said, I'm not thrilled that McMahon thinks Goldberg needs to be back, because that's absolute bunk. Further, I'd rather he face a younger guy and put him over, as that could do so much for a young career. I know I'm extremely biased against BL, but I have good reason. After their WrestleMania XX match and BL's attitude and work-rate of late, I'm so over him and know that almost anyone else on the roster would be better for Goldberg to face, but again, it's all in McMahon's hands.
Post Show > F
This week's show was honestly one of the worst Raws I think I have ever seen in the 15 years I have been watching WWE! Every single match was terribly booked from start to finish. The only exception being the Cruiserweight’s that Vince is rumoured to be souring on. Even though TJP chants are getting louder every week, and crowd reactions are getting stronger as the matches go, but Vince still thinks big lumbering oafs like Brawn Strowman are what sells. Just about every segment, both in the ring and backstage, fell flatter than a pancake. And the whole show was seemingly written as an excuse to re-introduce Goldberg to WWE’s audience.
If WWE’s higher-ups honestly think a show like this is going to solve their ratings woes, they are even more arrogant and out of touch than I thought. And no amount of nostalgia delivered in the form of a former star returning is going to help them. Nostalgia, that I can assure you, will not last long! Fans will turn on “Goldturd” faster than they ever did on Roman Reigns. Not to mention that it takes precious air time and creative forces away from the workers who could be the big stars of today if WWE was willing to invest in them!
We may owe everything to Vince McMahon, regarding how big and amazing the industry is today, but if this is the product we continue to get under his creative leadership, then I say it’s time he handed over the creative reigns to Triple H and Stephanie. Because honestly, I don’t know how much more of this pure unwatchable crap I can take.
Queen of WNW
KB & Big M