-I’m looking forward to the day that WWE title histories come in flow chart form. It’ll look good on any devoted fan’s bedroom wall.
-WWE RAW is live from Lafayette, LA, which makes me think of “Fat Lever”.
-Twelve man tag tonight! Teams of six, uhh…..vow to take out their—hey, the opening match is starting!
Match 1: Randy Orton vs. Drew McIntyre
Shouldn’t Orton be worn down and extremely pained after competing inside Hell in a Cell, and thus should be selling the trauma? And poor Drew doesn’t even get an intro. I guess Vince got my letters about Drew being drier than a mummy’s ass. Sure enough, the battered Orton dominates the first two or three minutes before McIntyre can finally get an offensive move in. Even that is fleeting, as Orton comes back with European uppercuts. Drew with his hair down looks like Clay Matthews and Hope Solo gave birth to a very pretty girl. Rope assist DDT and emphatic RKO complete the win.
WINNER: Randy Orton via RKO
RATING: 4/10: Nothing wrong with it, other than Orton being no worse for wear. A decent semi-squash.
Meanwhile, Mark Henry remains in the ring, while it’s announced that Big Show is back Friday. RATINGS! And this segues into the next match….
Match 2: Mark Henry vs. John Morrison (non title match)
Hope you like squash, kids. Wait, two matches before 9:20? What era is this? Morrison is allowed to escape the World’s Strongest Slam and chop Henry down with kicks (did he dump Melina?), before Henry kicks out of Starship Pain (guess not). Then Henry crushes Morrison with the World’s Strongest Slam to win. Yep, they’re still together.
WINNER: Mark Henry via World’s Strongest Slam
RATING: 3/10: Well, it was spirited at least.
Henry attacks Morrison afterward, which Booker decries (though Orton did the same to McIntyre, and Cole calls him out on it). Afterward, Henry says he’s done with Orton, and tells Big Show to bring it on Friday. That’s good; Henry can beat Show at Vengeance and continue the reign.
In Ring Segment: A Bunch of Angry Heels
Alberto Del Rio, David Otunga, Christian, Dolph Ziggler, Jack Swagger, and Cody Rhodes are here to move along the chatter of their class action suit against Triple H. Del Rio raises the point about the cell being raised to let Cena back in, but lowered when Miz and R-Truth emerged to begin the attack. Del Rio accuses HHH of having the power to control the cell’s positioning. Maybe it was Paul Bearer a la WM15? Christian claims WWE is an unsafe place to work. That’s what Chris Nowinski’s BEEN saying! Then Cody Jacob Silj’s his way into calling Triple H an egomaniac. Ziggler and Swagger lithp and lithp their way into saying the same thing. Then Vickie screeches to bring the crowd to life. Otunga interjects to encourage legal action, prompting Triple H to come out. Triple H basically says WWE used to be about manliness and action, not cowardice and lawsuits. Triple H names their opponents for the twelve man and forgets Mason Ryan, which I hope is a rib. Triple H says the fans pay the wrestlers to shut up and fight. Yeah, way to speak out against talking segments, Game!
SEGMENT RATING: 6/10. I’ll be positive because it gave talking time to some who don’t always get any, and it’s progressing something, so okay.
Match 3: Kelly Kelly/Eve Snores vs. The Divas of Doom
This is like “Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan”. Kelly goes nuts on Beth and smashes her into the table, resulting in a disqualification. Every Kelly match should end in 20 seconds with a disqualification. Kelly’s actual words: “RRRRRRRRRAAAAAARRRGHH! YAAAAAAARGGH! RAAAAAHHHHHH!!!!!”
WINNERS: The Divas of Doom via DQ
RATING: 1/10. At least it was short.
Match 4: Santino Marella vs. Jinder Mahal
I’ve never been so happy to see Santino’s cobra. Wait, not that. Santino mocks him with fake Indian/Farsi speak, which the ACLU may not like. Cobra finishes quick.
WINNER: Santino Marella via Cobra
RATING: 1/10. I was having such high hopes for this show. That said, I’m happy to see Santino recover from his accident.
Rewind: The Awesome Truth Incident
The entire Miz/R-Truth attack from after last night’s main event is re-aired in its near entirety. The segment was awesome, but I was more delighted to see the real Jim Ross return. The part where Miz and Truth dropped to their knees with an emphatic surrender is sheer gold. JR and Booker ask the “who raised/lowered the cage” and “who let Miz and Truth back in” questions, while Miz and R-Truth air a YouTube apology. It’s not clear why the two were truly fired (other than “they lied”) so the plot thickens. Miz and Truth announce their own lawsuit for wrongful termination, as well as assault from Triple H
SEGMENT RATING: 9/10. It kept me interested, because the info is pertinent to the future of the centerpiece storyline. And hey, last night’s segment kicked a$#.
Match 5: CM Punk/John Cena/Air Boom/Sheamus/Mason Ryan vs. Alberto Del Rio/Christian/Cody Rhodes/Jack Swagger/Dolph Ziggler/David Otunga
Punk, Ryan, and Otunga: WHEN NEXUS EXPLODES! Wow, every male champion but Mark Henry is in this match. Cena cleans house early and that sets up Ryan and Ziggler. Great, I’m sensing Mason Ryan wins the US Title. Errr, not that the belt means anything. Not that ANY of them mean anything (http://www.wrestlingnewssource.com/news/21214/Column-THE-WWE-TITLE-WRESTLINGS-FILTHY-WHORE/) Then to pop the crowd further, Sheamus kills Swagger dead. Punk comes in next (to a HUGE “CM PUNK” chant), and Rhodes tries to turn the tide for the heels. Punk pops the crowd big with a leg lariat, knee lift, and bulldog, and things break down with a giant standoff as we head to break. Return from break and Rhodes is in control on Kofi. Christian manages to keep momentum on the heel side as Kofi fights to tag, old school style. Kingston nearly tags after taking Cody out, but Christian prevents it. Then Jack Dolph takes over on Kofi as this match is dragging a bit. Maybe if the earlier matches weren’t a combined 3 min long, they could have had this later? Bourne gets the hot tag and goes crazy on Jack Dolph. Air Bourne lands on Swagger, but Vickie gets Swagger’s foot on the rope. Chad Patton (see, I know the refs) ejects Vickie, who screams WAY better than Kelly. Then we hit a second commercial, so we’re getting the extended formula. Back from break and Bourne is now the face in peril. The hell you say. Del Rio goes in and lands a sick tilt a whirl backbreaker for 2. Bourne fires back with an equally sick tornado DDT. Cena gets the hot tag and goes to work on ADR, giving us the likely Vengeance main event. After taking Del Rio out, the heels gang up on Cena, with Christian in firmest control. Then Swagger gets his shots in, making Cena the third face in peril. Cena tags Sheamus, who rolls through Ziggler and the rest of the heels, but takes a Zig Zag for 2. The whole match breaks down, with everyone exchanging moves, leading to a finisher sequence, with Sheamus finishing Ziggler with the Brogue Kick. What a flurry!
WINNERS: Cena/Punk/Sheamus/Air Boom/Ryan via Brogue Kick
RATING: 9/10. Sue me, that was fun. I love those extended formula matches, and it had a crazy fun ending. I don’t ask for the stars.
Raw and Smackdown rosters make their way out, followed by the divas, followed by the refs, who get no music. The injured Jerry Lawler even makes his way out. Finally, Triple H makes his way out, as the scene is similar to High Noon, minus the tension. Triple H dismisses Miz and R-Truth for being unwilling to own up to their actions, and then admits that he’s an old school guy that would rather use violence to solve problems. Then we get a pandering remark about how the show is for the fans. Oh man, where to even begin with that one? Wade “Geoffrey Rush” Barrett is the first to talk, bringing up the unsafe working environment argument, and accuses HHH of not being able to control the talent. Then Triple H points out that Barrett led the Nexus invasion, and reveals his hypocrisy. Mike Chioda then speaks, and believes that the referees have taken more abuse than ever. HHH somewhat agrees with Chioda. Beth Phoenix is next, and, out of character, says that the women don’t like the chaos because it puts them in harm’s way from the out of control guys. Then Jerry Lawler speaks, and says that he thinks Raw is spiraling out of control. However, he says it’s not Triple H’s fault. Lawler takes up for CM Punk, and says that someone, shrouded, is causing the chaos to happen. Christian then tries to lead the vote of confidence, voting “no confidence” for the boss. Chioda votes the same, then Beth does the same, and Lawler agrees with the consensus. Then Lawler reveals that he’s walking out of WWE, with the rest of the roster in tow, with the upper card faces and Booker T leaving last. In a nice touch, the cameramen put their equipment down and leave as well. The last one to walk out is Jim Ross. Then Johnny Ace makes his way out, with only HHH remaining, shakes his head at him, and then leaves. HHH rather calmly looks into the crowd as the show ends.
SEGMENT RATING: 7/10. It was different, if not always exciting. Will be fun to see who the mystery force is, if not Ace. (Vince?)
Justin Henry is a freelance writer whose work appears on many websites. He provides wrestling, NFL, and other sports/pop culture columns for CamelClutchBlog.com, as well as several wrestling columns a week for WrestlingNewsSource.com and WrestleCrap.com. Justin can be found here on Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/notoriousjrh and Twitter- http://www.twitter.com/cynicjrh.