Raw Reversal Episode 3 – 23rd November 2015
Don’t you dare be sowwwaaaaa! Episode 3 of WWE Raw Reversal is here, where I take certain matches/segments from the latest episode of Monday Night Raw and reverse the booking to make the story far more entertaining in my opinion. Sadly, the content on Raw was rather disappointing this week, following a poor showing at Survivor Series, and so I felt rather pressed for choices. However, I’ve picked a repeated Divas Segment, another typical 6 man tag match and a tag match that could set up an interesting future.
Goldust and the Prime Time Players vs Stardust and the Ascension
So Titus O’Neil wandered into a backstage promo by Stardust, and the match was set. It was a fun match leading to the returning Goldust being on the winning team, but it was just underwhelming. The actual stable lost, and the seeming feud between Stardust and Goldust wasn’t furthered in the slightest. It was just another tag team match thrown together on Raw.
So what would I have done differently?
This may be surprising to hear, but I would have had the actual stable defeat the team randomly assembled together for one night. Stardust and the Ascension formed the ‘Cosmic Wasteland’ a good month ago, and yet they still aren’t being treated as a stable. This week, they should have had the chance to finally get going. The match starts as usual, as both teams get an early attack in before the heels take control for a while (it’s just how tag team matches go). Goldust and Stardust have so far not interacted in the match. They are both tagged in, and they enter quickly, but Stardust tags himself straight back out. The match goes on for a couple of minutes longer, before Stardust and Viktor, both not being legal at the time, go round to the other side and take Darren Young and Goldust off the apron (Stardust taking down Darren, Viktor taking down Stardust). Titus is distracted, giving Konnor a moment to take advantage and hit him from behind. The ref tries to get Stardust to back away, as the Ascension hit the Fall of Man on Titus to pick up the victory. A simple booking for the stable to build credibility and look dominant. But it doesn’t end there. Goldust and Stardust are presumably heading for another match, so the seeds should have been planted tonight. After the bell, the Ascension should have rolled Goldust into the ring and held him up. Stardust could talk trash to him as he is locked by the Ascension, before kicking his brother in the mid-section. Goldust is groggy in the middle of the ring, and the Ascension line up the Fall of Man on Goldust. As they get to the corners though, the PTP jump back in the ring, and the Cosmic Wasteland retreat. Not only does it the Wasteland a televised victory and start to build a bit of credibility back up for the Ascension, it also plants the seeds for Stardust and Goldust’s next collision without giving too much away. It also gives Goldust motivation to go after Stardust, a typical example of the face going after the heel after an attack.
Credit where credit is due. It was a very clever idea to develop this feud on the basis of Charlotte having her arm under the rope. It is a whiny, heelish move by Paige that works. It also gives a legitimate reason for the feud to continue, where I am sure they can have better matches. The match they did have was very good, and the ending maintained both of their credibility. The aftermath of the match was almost there, but it was just a little lacking. I mean, the submission hold on the table is by far the most ridiculous thing I’ve seen in WWE for years. Applying a submission on a table does not make it hurt any more than if it was done in the ring.
So what was lacking, and how would I have incorporated it?
Tonight well and truly should have been Paige’s night. As I said, I am happy with the reasoning for the feud to continue, and I’m happy the feud is continuing. I wasn’t too keen on them having a rematch the night after the original Survivor Series encounter, but I’ll keep it in for now. So, both ladies had backstage interviews. Paige should have delivered hers as she did, but, as Charlotte was delivering hers, Paige should have attacked her backstage. Landed a few punches and thrown her into some backstage props. Paige goes to the ring a little while later, ready for her title match. Charlotte’s music hits, and she doesn’t appear for at least 15/20 seconds, before finally staggering out, selling the effects of the beat down. She claims she is ready to go. Paige attacks from the start, weakening Charlotte even more, but Charlotte slowly recovers and we slowly get the match we got, because the match itself was really good. It would obviously require Charlotte selling a lot, but I’m sure she is capable of doing so. The match spills to the outside, and the double count-out still exists. There, Paige ambushes Charlotte even more. She strips the table down, but instead of applying a submission on the table to no extra effect, she hits the RamPaige finisher and either plants Charlotte on the table or puts her through it, depending on if the table would actually break on that move. It adds a bit more brutality that is just lacking from women’s wrestling in general, but particularly in this feud. It would give a reason to Charlotte really wanting to seek revenge as well as creating a true aggressive heel in Paige, a character that she would be fantastic at playing. It would have been interesting to see an actual table or a chair get involved to set up a gimmick match at the TLC event, but that could be built towards instead of rushing into it right now. Adding that bit more is just what the ‘Divas Revolution’ could do with to regain its momentum.
Dolph Ziggler and Dean Ambrose vs Kevin Owens and Tyler Breeze
A tag team match that had no televised entrances (because the WWE Universe wanted to watch Ryback and Heath Slater have a segment instead… didn’t we?… No?… Okay it was stupid, but it happened) and was over pretty quickly, with Ambrose pinning Breeze. Owens had attacked Ziggler on the outside, but he didn’t get in the ring and break up the pin. It was a rushed match that literally done nothing to further the feuds… or did it?
Here’s what I would have done.
Firstly, all four men have televised entrances. It is something small and petty, but these four are creditable superstars, and they deserve to be treated as so. Anyway, originally my booking of this was to have Owens cut a promo, Ambrose cuts him off and says he beat him at Survivor Series so he has earned himself a shot at the Intercontinental Title, which would have been a good exchange of words between the two and would have set up an exciting feud. However, the ending of the match has made me rethink of what I would have done. Owens and Breeze were never going to get along anyway, so having them have an issue that ended the match was smart. From the start, I would have had the two bickering, complaining at each other and letting their egos get in the way of being a genuine team. Then, Owens attacks Ziggler on the outside as he did, and Ambrose pins Breeze as he did with Owens refusing to help (I’m not a massive fan of Breeze being pinned so often just yet, but this is for a good reason). Ambrose then occupies the ring, staring at Owens as Owens holds on to his title. Ziggler doesn’t get back in the ring, as he has been taken out by Owens. Ambrose then goes to check on Ziggler just as Breeze is getting back to his feet. Owens gets back in the ring, and Breeze starts shouting at Owens and blaming him for the defeat. Owens hits Breeze with a Pop-Up Powerbomb and lays him out in the middle of the ring. Ambrose gets back in the ring as Owens retreats up the ramp, title intact. What WWE have done is book it so, logically, Breeze and Ziggler would both be annoyed at Owens for his actions and go after him in the next few weeks. If that’s the case, they might as well go all out and either really book it this way or not do it at all. I would rather see them go ahead with it, because neither Ziggler or Breeze are benefitting from their current feud, so getting them involved in a four way feud resulting in a fatal four way gimmick match at TLC for the title would be fantastic. It would be built great with the characters involved and the match would be awesome, whichever stipulation that would be picked.
And that’s how I would have reversed the booking on Monday Night Raw. Is there anything else you would have changed? Would you have booked what I booked any differently? And… how do you feel about Sheamus… Yes… Sheamus… being our World Champion right now? Comment below or let me know on Twitter @carlo_george where I live tweet during RAW every Monday night.