RAW Is Blogged - Who Was That Masked Man?

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I was surprised to read about Cena having a tough month, personally. I think a lot of us forget that these are real people with real lives outside of the WWE (or TNA/IW). What I found really heartwarming was the comments on the WNW page talking about Cena having a hard month. Most people agreed to their dislike of the Cena character on TV, but respect Cena the man for all he has done.

Cena is the most requested and devoted celebrity wish granter. Make-A-Wish hits very close to my own heart. When I was young I was very ill and spent the better part of a year in and out of the hospital. Much of that time I was on a pediatrics ward with many children in similar condition to me and worse. A number of children were terminal and I lost friends while I was in there. When I was finally operated on it was discovered that if they hadn't operated when they did that I might not have made it as I was bleeding so badly internally. The medical records say I might have had two weeks left, but I was a lucky one. The hospital I was in did everything they could to keep our morale up. I was allowed freedom twice. The first was when my father came and took me to see Annie at the movie theater when it first came out. The other was when my parents took me to a block party in town. They brought a wheelchair for me, but I walked the whole way there and managed to walk through much of the festival, but rode back to the hospital in the chair. Many of the kids in with me weren't able to do even those things. I was eight years old and weighed thirty-eight pounds due to malnutrition from the Crohn's Disease, yet I was still better off than some of the other kids. One of our best days in there was when a hot air balloon flew by our solarium (play room where all the furniture folded out to beds for parents to stay). The balloon was so brightly beautiful and seemed like it was close enough for us to reach out and touch it.

Every little bright moment on that pediatrics ward (even as simple as putting apple juice in a specimen cup and telling the interns it didn't look clear enough and should flush it through again, then drinking the juice and watching the interns freak out, or eating blue and green popsicles to dye our mouths and make the doctors take a double take or clomping down the hall in my wooden bottomed shoes to annoy the nurses) was something we all cherished, but those were little things. Something like Make-A-Wish, which was just starting up then, would have been amazing.

My oldest daughter, Ellie, had a very rare cancer when she was four years old. I adopted Ellie and did not know her at that age, but the scars, her reactions and her maturity show how she had to grow up young and deal with a lot. She was granted a wish and went to Disney World. To this day she wishes she'd had the time to think about what she really wanted and was mature enough to come up with something really creative. Her father told her to say Disney when they came in to ask her. She did have a great time at Disney and has some wonderful memories from that trip even though she was so young and sick. My parents took me to Disney World after I had recovered enough to appreciate it.

What I'm saying through all this is that Cena is an amazing human being. I remember how scary it was to be so sick and in the hospital. In some ways it helped to be in with other very sick children, in other ways I learned about the finality of life in a very personal way. Cena takes his own personal time to visit with children who might never grow up like Ellie and I were lucky enough to do. As much as I like to cut on Cena's character and how corny he can be, I think I might have to agree with Foley on Cena's possible heel turn.

His thoughts on the crowd reactions recently on John Cena today, and his thoughts on the notion by some in the WWE Universe that Cena needs to "turn heel": "There’s one part of me that would like to see him really turn, and turn it on. But I think the moment he did that, the people who hated him would start to hate him less, and he would also lose the very very real love that part of the audience has for him. So I don’t know. I don’t know what’s going to happen, but I think it makes for a great television show."

I feel that Cena's character really needs to be changed in some way, but I don't want the children who love Cena so much to lose faith in him. When Hogan went to WCW and turned heel he was a bit past his height of taking vitamins and saying prayers, so it wasn't as much of a shocker to the little kids who had loved him so much during Hulkamania. If Cena was to turn full on heel, the haters might not hate as hard and there could be a lot of little kids who are crushed. Maybe the WWE could make Cena edgier without turning him full on heel. Rocky is edgy and he's a face. Heck, Edge was edgy and he was a face. Think about when Eddie was lying, cheating and stealing, but still a face and beloved by so many!

So maybe a change in character, but not a full on heel turn? Cena is getting reaction from the fans, it's not like he's going out and getting no reaction at all. The fans are hot for Cena, just not all in a positive way. I don't ever remember a face that got so much heat and stayed face. Cena just continues to change the face or wrestling! Either way, the WWE needs to do something with Cena and that involved VKM getting off his high horse and letting others step up and possibly compete with Cena's merch numbers. It is possible.

Show Starts

Tell Me I Did Not Just See That Slammy Award

B+ > I really hoped for more from Hornswoggle now that he can talk. I guess I was expecting too much. It was great that JR won the Slammy and that we got a dose of JR. But even better than his roonie was what happened after the segment. It looked like he blanked on his words and was struggling through it, but that he manned up online after the segment showed his true fiber (pun intended). Very few in the industry would step up and admit that they went blank and forgot their words. It happens to everyone at some point, but the way that JR owned up to it gave me just another reason to love JR and wish he was on announce every Monday night. Thank you JR for stepping up and admitting that he screwed up.

Winner > JR

Holy Bleep Moment of The Year Slammy Award

B > Foley and DiBiase were decent, but not as good as I expected from them. They came off as very stiff and dry, and not in a good way. On the other hand I was impressed with Big Show's little speech. He brought up what happened between him and Henry as well as pushing the storyline further to TLC – always good for a segment, but saying that him talking wasn't visually spectacular, so he was going to the ring to be spectacular there. I know that Big Show is a veteran in the industry, but after watching TNA/IW's Final Resolution Sunday night I forget what a pro can do and Big Show did it beautifully.

Winner > Big Show

Big Show vs Wade Barrett

C+ > Wade was decent on mic and his facial expressions when Big Show broke the table was great. I have to admit that he badly over-sold the abuse Big Show caused him, but he was better than he was when he first impressed upon me that he was green and clueless. He's really grown and hopefully working with Orton one on one will be good for him and his career.

Winner > Big Show

Pipe Bomb of The Year Slammy Award

A- > I have to admit that I loved Road Dogg Jesse James when DX was winding down, but before he started tagging with Ron 'The Truth' Killings. RD has one of the sexiest voices in the industry, sadly he has a face for radio. So while I was excited to see RD, it seemed as though most of the fans in the arena didn't have a clue as to who he was. Seeing him on RAW makes me hope that his trial with the WWE as a road agent is going well and he'll be kept on.

I loved Punk's speech! Between the bottom-less mannequin in the Dynamic Dudes t-shirt and the video that they finally showed, Punk came back up a couple notches from where he'd fallen in recent weeks due to lack of edginess. I have been saying over and over that they needed to show Laurinaitis from back in the day. Now that they have, I want more and I want to see more true mocking of the video of Laurinaitis from back in the day. I forgot just how bad he was back then. Not saying that he's good now, just talking about how little he's grown over the years. I'm actually a bit surprised that he's not still riding that skateboard with that horrid blond mullet!

Winner > Punk

Divalicious Moment of The Year Slammy Award

C- > While I'm a bit surprised VKM brought Lita back right after an arrest, but I was glad to see her. She was still stiff and awkward on mic, but she looked great! Seeing her in that sexy dress showing off her cleavage and her hair styled the way it was, she looked a lot more mature, but in a really good way. I'm quite impressed and wondering if this is the start of a return for Lita. The way Lita raised Kelly's hand against Beth and Natalya. I have to admit that I'd like a Lita return, at least for a while.

Winner > Kelly

OMG Moment of The Year Slammy Award

B > They did a really god job of reminding us of Taker and his streak with a possible 20-0 coming, and how Trip said he'd be waiting for Taker when he returned, if he returned. So he reminded us or past and possible future storylines, then he want on to push the current storyline with Nash. I know that the Slammy Award are fully rigged and go along with storylines, but I was really impressed with how this specific this award pushed so many things further, and so simply.

Winners > Taker & Trip

Trending Superstar of The Year Slammy Award

D- > I wasn't at all thrilled with Otunga and Atlas here. I'll even venture to say that they royally skunked up the show for a few minutes. It just wasn't good, and what is up with Otunga and his travel cup? It's getting on my nerves!

Winner > Ryder

Fatal Four Way Match – Ryder vs Cody vs Bryan vs Dolph

A- > This was a really solid Match. The pairings were interesting, the ring work was interesting and creative while playing up to certain clichés, but not dragging them all over the ring. Cody and Dolph both helped each other and fought, but it wasn't that they were besties then worst enemies. Ryder worked well in this Match even though he feels like the odd man out in that group. I'm really impressed with how long this Match lasted. I guess it's coming off TNA/IW where they made such a huge deal of a 30 minute Match that I forget that the WWE isn't the master of three minute matches!

Winners > Dolph

Game changer of The Year Slammy Award

A- > I absolutely agree that this was the game changer of the year. It took some serious guts for everyone involved to schedule a Match a year in advanced. There are so many what ifs, so many things that could go wrong with this, but things have gone well so far. Cena did a fabby job with his speech and taunting Rocky for not being there and not even being there on the tron. I'll admit that I've been a little pissy that Rocky said he wasn't leaving and had barely been back, but it's the storyline! Anyway, Cena did a solid job and wasn't terribly corny with it.

Winners > Rocky & Cena

ADR & Miz vs Orton & Punk

A > These four left it all out there. While I could be pissy about the Russo-esque ending with Wade getting involved, I'm not because it was short and sweet while continuing to push their feud. This is how a good run in is booked. Hogan, Bisch, Russo and even Dixie should take note of this, though they never will as Hogan, Bisch and Russo know what they're doing and never do anything wrong with TNA/IW. Sorry, still reeling over neither Bisch or Hogan being at TNA/IW's Final (lack of) Restitution. These four were great and the abuse brought on Punk after it was all over leaves us wondering if Punk can bounce back from it for TLC and retain his Title. Just beautifully booked and executed Match and segment.

Winners – Miz & ADR

Video

A > I loved these Kane videos, but little did I know what we were in for at the end of the show!

A-Lister of The Year Slammy Award

C > I thought Dust and Vickie were decent together, the makeup joke was funny, but Snooki is not an a-lister in any way, shape or form. I will admit her athleticism at WM impressed me and I've been seeing little glimmers of intelligence from her over the past year, but she is not worthy of an award and especially not a Slammy! She was horrible on the tron and her vacant eyes showed how little she cared about it all. She said the words, but no one was home. What a disaster.

Winner – Snooki

Backstage Segment

C > This was nothing to write home about. I know Henry can be decent on mic, but he's fallen into 'he aint seen nothing yet' and 'he be inducted into the hall o' pain!' He's capable of more but seems to be phoning in his mic work lately.

Sheamus vs Jinder

C+ > While Sheamus was cute and got his pop, I don't think this did much to continue to push Sheamus' rebuild. I'm wondering what WWE has planned for Jinder. I haven't seen much of him since Khali left. Now I fully admit that I don't watch SD as closely as as I do RAW and Impact, but Jinder hasn't done anything much lately, has he? Either way, it was fun to watch Sheamus though it did nothing for either wrestler.

Winner – N/A

Superstar of The Year Slammy Award

C+ > Okay, what was up with Rey's lips? Much of the time Rey looks like he might be wearing lipstick, but during that segment Rey looked like he was wearing Peach Passion on his lips. Rey already has a very feminine mouth, and as that's the most of what we see of Rey's face, so the lipstick look made him look even girlier. I will say it was nice to see Rey back, even if not in action.

I'm thrilled that Punk won the Slammy Award for Superstar of The Year. He deserves it. I can't say that it was better that Laurinaitis came out and accepted the award for Punk, but after the abuse he took at the hands of ADR and Miz, it made sense that he didn't come out. Laurinaitis is really dry and annoying, but if I had to choose between the two, I'd rather WWE got rid of Cole over Laurinaitis. Laurinaitis has been playing up his lack of excitement in a way that's very subtle, but funny. The problem with Laurinaitis working the way he is is that most wrestling fans don't get subtlety. I normally don't like to generalize about wrestling fans, but that so many fans are young children, I am willing to say that most don't get subtlety like Laurinaitis.

Winner > Punk

Announce Segment

B+ > I love the story King and Cole told about the woman in the service who clung to VKM when she saw him, that the picture of her teen son with his WWE belt meant so much to her. I'll be surprised if we don't see her on the WWE in the future when she returns stateside, or maybe even in WWE's Tribute To The Troops tonight. What a sweet story and it was nice that they brought her family to the show. I'm always impressed with what VKM and the WWE does for the service men and women.

Video

A > Another one of those confusing videos. I'll be interested in seeing who it is who returns to the E. I will give the WWE credit for using these videos and keeping us wondering. In this day of the web leaking so much info, it's nice to be left questioning a bit.

Henry vs Cena

D+ & A+ > I'm always annoyed when there's no way Cena could be fighting back, yet he is. Henry would flatten Cena if this was at all real. I know, it's all choreographed, blah, blah, blah. Anyway, the Match wasn't at all impressive until...

KANE! That fire erupted and I marked out! I was yelling and bouncing around in my seat all the while typing away and trying not to dump my netbook off my knees and onto the floor. I'm thrilled that Kane is back and even more thrilled that he's re-masked. I was a bit surprised that Kane took out Cena, but I guess he really has to be heel returning with his mask this way. I wasn't sure about that big mask he wore down to the ring, but it was intimidating. I really love Kane's new mask! I couldn't tell what color the mask was as the lights were red, but I'm guessing it was red. I'm thrilled for Kane's return and hope he's able to finish off his career as he should, masked!

Post Show

I have to admit that this was a pretty decent three hour RAW. Normally I loathe them, but that was fun. I didn't start getting worn out until the show was almost over and Kane got me through the end. The Slammy Awards were all rather predictable, but it is what they're all about. All in all I'm pretty impressed with the show. I'm going to cut this off here as the Tribute To The Troops will be starting soon!

KB

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