IN LAIMAN'S TERMS: RAW - 9-3-12
By Al Laiman
Sep 4, 2012 - 11:00:50 PM
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IN LAIMAN'S TERMS: 30 Thoughts: RAW 1006 - 9-3-12
1. As I said on my Facebook page, please forgive the delay in posting this column. Yesterday was my mother's 50th birthday, and that took precedence over watching wrestling. I've managed to avoid all the spoilers, and after what I thought was a good show last week, I'm hoping they can build on it. As the show opens, despite going full blown heel, there's a very audible "C-M Punk!" chant. We go backstage to see Lawler and Punk brawling. Punk is in blue jeans, which by wrestling logic means he'll be in a street fight tonight.
2. Sheamus, the other world champion, opens up the show, and I can see we've got an incredibly short rampway tonight. It's interesting to hear Cole so surprised that Lawler got assaulted backstage, considering their past together. I'm not complaining though; I'll take toned down Cole eight days a week. Ah, we're in Chicago, that explains the pro-CM Punk crowd. Sheamus says the party is about to end for Alberto Del Rio, but he's interrupted by Living Colour, and the arena explodes. Wow, what a pop! Even Sheamus appears to be impressed by the reaction, and who can blame him? I haven't heard a crowd cheer this loud since Lesnar returned. Punk claims that Lawler attacked him first, which starts to draw a bit of that pop away, but saying that he got it Chicago-style takes it back. He summarizes his mission against Lawler in the cage match before mentioning the "White Knight" John Cena, which gets heat normally reserved for X-Pac at a smarkj convention. Punk asks if he's turned his back on them, which is a perfect opportunity for a Daniel Bryan "NO!" chant. He equates agreeing with Lawler to disrespecting the WWE champion for 288 days.
3. Sheamus finally remembers that he's in this segment and interrupts Punk, by which CM Punk is not impressed. Sheamus compares Punk interrupting him to the disrespect Rocky showed him at RAW 1000, and Punk gives him the snarky smile. Sheamus challenges him to come down to the ring, but Punk mimics his "fella" name before claiming him to be the second-best in the world. Truthfully, that's pretty much how the WWE treats that title anyway, so not that far off. A familiar entrance music is followed by a skipping lady in a white suit to announce two matches. The contenders for the world titles will be facing off, and the other will be a champion vs. champion match, which AJ clarifies that means it'll be Sheamus vs. Punk... You know, in case you didn't realize the two guys with the belts were the champions. It's awfully convenient of her to come to that booking decision. I mean, how could Punk have known he was going to face the guy he interrupted? Shenanigans! Shenanigans, I say!
4. Vickie Guerrero comes out before Dolph Ziggler's match with Randy Orton. She first informs us that she'll deal with AJ later tonight, and then reads Dolph's resume before introducing him. He's facing Orton, with whom he's managed some great matches in the past. They show the replay on Smackdown where Orton won via an RKO out of nowhere. Well thank JBL that's never been done before. Orton goes on heel-style offense in the beginning of the match, despite being a face, and dominates the first few minutes like a fake dom at a Fifty Shades convention. Hey, I referred to that piece of shit Stephanie Meyer movie in this week's episode of Jaded Hope above (cheap plug), so I might as well reference its equally awful counterpart with spanking. Oh yeah, there's a match going on. Forgive me, it's Randy Orton, and since I found talking about mommy porn and Sparkle Dracula more interesting than him, well... That really says it all.
5. The match comes back as Ziggler takes a face bump from a good seven feet in the air. Chicago demonstrates they can count by singing along with an Orton ten punch, but Ziggler comes back with some ruthless aggression of his own. I do like how he's amped this up in recent weeks. Vickie does her best AW impression while yelling at the match, and is about as audible as he was with a microphone. Ziggler does a headstand and almost lands in a Cattle Mutilation-type move. Oh how happy I would be if Danielson brought that back. Ziggler hits a sweet kitchen sink, which is one of the most fun basic moves to do, but misses an elbow drop and Orton begins a comeback. Ziggles cuts him off again and gets a nearfall with... that move that Miz does in the corner, but in the middle of the ring, whatever you'd call it. McChesney did it better when he followed it up with a kick, that's all I'm saying.
6. Orton gets control with Dolphy Gunn up on the ropes, and Cole says "You don't wanna be in that position with Randy Orton," which has great potential for out of context usage in slashfic. Orton hits a great superplex, and Cole makes sure to remind us that he's going to that place where he hears voices in his head. Gag. If anyone hears voices in his head, it's TROOF. Ziggles makes a comeback and gets a really close nearfall. Orton comes back with the ropes DDT, and Ziggles tries not to signal the aliens with his tights. A roll-up attempt goes awry, and Ziggles finally gets a win against Randy Orton. This makes... Miz come out? Interesting decision, I guess someone has to eat an RKO for no reason. It's so enthralling that Cole uses this time to preview the main events. Wait, I guess he's just doing commentary? Kay... Word of advice, protect your diet soda, Mizanin.
7. We're back, and Cole reminds us that Lawler was assaulted in the back, if you missed it by chance. We immediately cut to the Daniel Bryan/Kane anger management classes, and I can only hope it matches the awesomeness of last week's segment. Harold shows us that he's become a white knight of his own by trading places with a blonde chick. Daniel Bryan's anger collage is a rendition of "Hello, Goodbye" and as usual, his ham is off the charts. Conveniently not calling on any of the other people in the class, Kane holds up a blank piece of paper. Creepy therapist guy asks if that's a reflection of how Kane feels inside. Kane repeats the question back to him, and Kane crumples up the piece of paper, throws it away... and summons the fire in the trash can! I'd say that was awesome, but Miz might sue for gimmick infringement. Not to be outdone, D-Bry calls him a teacher's pet. Week two of amazing, hilarious segments. More of this, please!
8. The Saturday Morning Barney and Friends Slam runs with Brodus Clay and the Funkateers, which is a great message to aim at kids with Cameron's recent legal trouble. Rey Mysterio brings us back and begs us to define what a booyaka is. Maybe his partner Sin Cara will have some idea. Albert Tensai Train is his first opponent, and for once he doesn't shove his manservant out of the way. He's teaming with Cody Rhodes, who would be much better served in bringing back his intellectual counterpart than trying to subdue AT&T's screaming tendencies. Ten seconds into the match, and we're already into a commercial break. To quote the guy on commentary right now... Really? Four entrances, a bunch of social media references, and a standoff is all we can get in before going to another commercial break?
9. We're back with the heel team dominating, as Miz has to join in the crusade of saying that Sin Cara is hideously ugly without his mask. Dynamite drop in, Mizzy. That broadcasting school has really paid off. You can hear a pin drop in the crowd, which considering it's a Chicago crowd is pretty sad. Rey gets a lukewarm reaction as he tags in, and Miz says he's been his truest test since he's become Intercontinental champion. Rey gets a close fall, but AT&T comes in to eat a 619, followed by a Sin Cara missile dropkick. Rhodes cuts off Mysterio and nearly wins the match, but himself gets set up for the 1238. Sin Cara hits a pretty-looking Swanton, and Rhodes eats another loss at the hands of Sin Cara. Did Cody Rhodes take a leak in someone's tea?
10. Back to the Anger Management sessions, and Bryan and Kane are definitely not impressed. The therapist asks them to make space in the room. He encourages Danielson and Kane to participate, and he asks Bryan to fall backwards. He says Kane will catch him, and Kane looks confused with an "I will?!" It goes off without a hitch surprisingly, which moves them on to phase two, meaning they're both going to catch Harold. They pull their hands away, and ask each other if they knew they weren't gonna catch him. Danielson says that he finally understands Kane. PLEASE make these two a tag team called Anger Management NOW!
11. So, they're having a champion vs. champion match in the middle of the second hour, while in CM Punk's hometown, while presumably the two number one contenders face each other in the main event? A Warrior rant is not going to suffice for my level of confusion in this situation. I don't think TROOF trying to trade the matches for a box of spiders could match my confusion here. Punk grabs the microphone and does another cheap pop for his hometown. Thankfully Punk plays up the confusing timing of this champion vs. champion match, and decides to take the day off of work because it's Labor Day. Sheamus calls after him and says it's disrespect to walk out on all the people who want to see this match. Punk continues to walk out on AJ, and Matt Stryker asks for her reaction. She asks who he is, which is always a great sign from your boss, and decides that she'll find Sheamus an opponent. I guess that is a way to get him heat in Chicago.
12. The Black Hole of Charisma wanders to ringside before AJ's opponent makes his way to the ring. Biff Swagger? So, the world champion walks out and they get another former world champion to face him instead. Interesting choice, I suppose. Now Biff, don't con me, you may be a former world champion, but I can't remember the last time you won a match. You best be starting the second coat of wax right now, sir. Miz even sounds like a face in criticizing Punk's decision to leave for a personal day, which is slightly confusing, but not against his character in this context. Swagger hits his vaulting slam, which means he's pulling a Cobra and is about to lose in a minute. Sure enough, a few seconds later, Sheamus locks in a Texas cloverleaf, capstoned by Miz saying "Texas cloverleaf, son!" I'm not against Sheamus showing a little Malenko-style.
13. Del Rio hits the ring for a post-match attack, but eats one of Sheamus' 15 finishers, but Rodriguez steps in the way for the BOOT TO THE HEAD. Cole says the phrase "taking a bullet" twice about the situation, and it's so sweet that Ricardo is so committed to his job. He sells the kick so seriously that the medics are checking on him, which is demonstrated to be so serious that they cutaway to previewing the John Cena match later this evening. Way to sell that moment, WWE. During the commercial break, they advertise the new WWE App, which I'm quite sure won't get any airtime during the show whatsoever. They are known after all for not being product whores at all.
14. Eve and Kaitlyn are having a match, but we're going to recall the infamous battle royal that'll be the favorite all-time match of the next female contestant on Tough Enough. It's presented by Dredd... LAWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW! Some guy in the front row is more interested in taking a picture of the ringside area than the match itself. Layla and Miz go back and forth, and Miz reinforces that he doesn't take personal days. Layla's using her native accent, which is weird to hear after the years of Laycool.
15. Hearing Miz trying to be more of a Diva than either of the ones in the ring is more interesting than the actual in-ring action. The ref stops the "action" and Kaitlyn appears to be hurt, and Eve lets her get up before hitting her finisher and they sell the sportsmanship of doing so. She walks over to ringside and offers a handshake to Layla, because they're hoping the ROH model will get a pop in Chicago, I guess.
16. Backstage, Biff Swagger decides he's going to take some extended time off. AJ freaks out that everyone's leaving her. She mentions that Lesnar left, which is legit. She mentions that Jericho left... Well gee willickers there, Miss AJ, who is responsible for that kayfabe decision? Now that Punk left her tonight, she can't take anyone else leaving her. Biff decides that he's better than this and still walks out, hopefully coming back repackaged when he does.
17. Segment three of Anger Management, and I still swear that's the guy from Hanna. They ask if Bryan and Kane want to say some closing words. Danielson decides to give Kane a rematch any time he wants... No, dammit! Become a tag team! Kane accepts the challenge to not eviscerate him. That gets Danielson angry, and they get in each other's faces. Harold tries to intervene, which makes both of them say "SHUT UP, HAROLD!"
18. Awesome. It's ham-on-ham COMBAT! The therapist guy has his own little meltdown, and there's ham all around. Cole gets on the mic to decide the fate of Kane and Daniel Bryan. The options are to have a match, compete as a tag team, or have a hug. Oh dear JBL, make them a tag team! As awkward as a hug-off between those two would be, I'm the advocate for the Anger Management tag team. The nameless Stryker tries to get comments on Ricardo's condition, but David Otunga steps in and says that his client has no comment at this time. Hey, whatever keeps him from wrestling, I'm good with it.
19. Something about The Rock on set, and they've come up with their own hashtag. Don't care. Jinder Mahal gets the jobber entrance for the RVT-1000 and his invisible low-budget pyro sound effect. The second pyro goes off at the wrong time, and RVT gets himself a loud "Goldberg!" chant once again. To his credit, Jinder gets in more offense than most have while Miz makes fun of Michael Cole while actually discussing some sound strategy of how he would face him. I'm still really impressed about how over that "FEED ME MORE!" chant has gotten. RVT throws the Clothesline from Skynet and then marches to the finish. Gee, they're already plugging the WWE app on screen. Who saw that coming? The poll results are coming up next, and I'm begging the voters to not be idiots on this one. I realize technically this show already happened, but dammit I want my Anger Management tag team!
20. They plug the... irritatingly awful Night of Champions theeme song, which is unreleased with good reason... Anything with Limp Bizkit, with the exception of the WrestleMania XVII song usage, of course. Anonystryker asks AJ what she's going to do with the show getting out of control, and she decides to make Del Rio and Cena's match "falls count anywhere". That... helps? Oh hey, there's Daniel Bryan's music, and the crowd comes alive! It has yet to not surprise me about how loud the crowd consistently reacts to him. Kane follows him out as Miz laughs about trying to hug The Big Red Machine. They show replays of Kane beating the hell out of Josh Matthews while apologizing, which would've easily won the ham on Smackdown. Hug wins the Twitter poll, and I am disappointed. I came all this way just to share my dream with you.
21. The referee has the unenviable job of trying to get these two to hug, and Bryan goes crazy saying "NO!" while the crowd encourages him. Kane tries to suppress his emotion while Miz laughingly says "He's gonna looooooose it!" I'll admit, despite my disappointment, this is getting an incredible reaction. Miz even comments on the odd disposition of there being a referee for this particular moment. This is too much! They slowly try to summon their manliness, and Bryan finally manages to come off with a chest bump, which gets Packers fan heat from the Chicago crowd. Daniel Bryan locks his arms around Kane, and then freaks out yelling "You didn't HUG ME!" Wow, this is really happening.
22. Kane once again approaches, and they finally hug while yelling in each other's ears. They have to be laughing their asses off at this. Now, I guess they have to hug each other at the same time? Okay, now they're dragging this out a bit. They finally have an actual hug in the middle of the ring, which gets an enormous pop. Daniel Bryan offers a handshake, and Kane accepts. They smack each other's shoulders, but Bryan isn't too impressed, and smacks him harder. Yes, this is what I was hoping for from them. End up as a tag team constantly trying to outdo each other, I'm begging you. This turns into a shoving match.
23. It finally breaks down into a fight, resulting in Kane giving a boot to the head. He goes after Bryan, but he pulls the ropes out from under him. Bryan comes off the top rope, but Kane counters with a throat thrust. Kane goes nuts at ringside and grabs a chair. Kane decimates Bryan, hits him with a chokeslam, and then locks a chair around his neck. The refs distract him from coming off the top rope, which gives Bryan time to hit Kane with a chair. He bails, and that was... definitely interesting. It keeps the angle going, and they continue to be amazing together.
24. Santino's getting his rematch for the US title, which means we're finally gonna get to see Claudio Castagnoli on Monday night! I approve of this message! During his entrance, he actually paraphrases JFK about being the US champion. Santino hits the hip toss, which means he's getting Cobra'd in a minute. He's about to hit it, but the Cobra... stops himself before it hits. Wow... Just when I thought it couldn't get dumber than last week, it does. I hear some "EYYYYYY!" chants in the crowd, which makes me nostalgic.
25. Claudio continues dominating the match, but Santino escapes and grasps for the sock puppet. He finally gets his sock puppet, but Claudio catches up with him and wins with his Styles Lynndriver. There wasn't much reaction for him, but that happens when someone is exclusively on television Friday nights. I think if he appears more, he'll start to get some Damien Sandow reactions.
26. Hey, did you know Jerry Lawler was attacked by CM Punk at the top of the show? I had no idea. They should really spend more time reminding me. Back to the show, Heath Slater and Zack Ryder got into a Twitter war... Remember when feuds started for reasons that mattered? Oh well, at least it's the ONE MAN BAAAAAAAAAAAAND, BABAY! Michael Cole reads off all the Tweets, just in case I didn't want to stab myself in the ears enough. Miz continues talking about Twitter instead of the match. The two start talking about themselves and sucking each other's proverbial dicks about doing each other's Hall-of-Fame speeches. Slater apparently thinks he's Ric Flair tonight, but whatever works. Ryder goes for the Rough Ryder, but Slater makes a comeback. Ryder tries again and gets the win, and that surprises even Miz.
27. Vickie interrupts the moment, which even Miz thought ruiend it, and Ryder and Slater conveniently are already out of the ring before she gets down there. Vickie gets a chair, and I guess she's going to do her Mick Foley pre-ECW One Night Stand 2006 impression. She decides to have a sit-down protest. If Jerry Lawler was there, he'd probably make a joke about wondering why she didn't do a hunger strike instead, because he's oh so witty. They review AJ smacking her in the face. Then she... oh dear... She's doing the Clint Eastwood "empty chair" routine. Thankfully, AJ's music cuts it off before it can go any further.
28. Thankfully, AJ's music cuts it off before it can go any further. AJ tells everyone that the Board of Directors have told her that she can't put her hands on anyone ever again. Vickie starts taunting and insulting her, then demanding an apology. She finally does, and of course this isn't good enough, as all apology segments do. Anyone missing John Laurinaitis yet? She does again, and Vickie smacks her. If only she had the Stone Cold "unless provoked" clause, because you know, that would make sense. Nothing like allowing employees to smack around their boss, that's completely logical! Isn't that what you wanted to see? Doesn't this just make for such interesting storyline? AJ takes it out on the microphone and the chair and has a nervous breakdown. She starts smacking the chair into the mat and screaming at it. Now this is more like a tantrum, Christian 2002-style.
29. Highlight videos, more replays... More replays... John Cena comes out, more replays. Del Rio comes out, more replays... Then, just in case there weren't enough distractions... Tout. And after that... A commercial. Well I guess they have to fill that three hours somehow. During a lockup, Cole says that no one has ever invoked the type of emotional response that Cena gets from the crowd. Um, I'd argue that at least two parts of the show TONIGHT have invoked more of a reaction. While the match is going on, they argue about CM Punk's history and him walking out. Cena hits a really nice dropkick. Miz echoes the sentiment of every Cena hater when he hits the shoulder blocks and says "This is something we see often." Del Rio counters the AA, and throws him into the steel steps on the outside. Del Rio summons his inner Low-ki and hits a double stomp as he tries to gain the advantage. He then throws Cena into the barricade as hard as Lance Storm hit RVD with a chair at Barely Legal '97... Google it.
30. Well, at least in a falls count anywhere match, they're trying to get falls anywhere. They've failed to use gimmick matches to their advantage in the last few weeks. Cena starts taking apart the announce table, but Del Rio hits a nice enziguiri kick for a near fall. Cena starts to try to come back, but Del Rio shoves him into the ring post, which he sold quite well. The crowd is chanting something, but I can't make it out. Cena gains the advantage, and I hear a huge pop, so that's odd. Cena walks up the stairs and goes for the AA, but Del Rio counters with a sweet-looking side suplex. Cena kicks out, and everyone screams Super Cena. That was damn vicious looking. Del Rio decides to ruin this match of his I've been enjoying by grabbing a mic and speaking. Cena counters Del Rio's attack and puts him in the STF. Del Rio hits a great counter and uses the microphone to break it up. The fight continues on the ramp. Del Rio hits a suplex, which looks like he hits feet first. Painful, I don't care how you land it. The fight goes near the car. Cena's attempt to get a speaker fails, and it goes backstage. Del Rio avoids a thrown garbage can, which must've been given air time by flying vagina squirrels, and it spills into the interview area. This is turning into a video game fight. It's quite enjoyable. Cena hits the AA, but Punk suddenly appears and kicks Cena in the head to a huge pop. He throws Del Rio on top of Cena, and he gets the win. He then uses the hood of his car as a replacement for his knee for a Go2Sleep. That was not only awesome, but looked like it hurt like hell. As Punk gets in the car, it slowly drives away, and PAUL HEYMAN IS DRIVING THE CAR! YES! YES! YES!
Okay, the show was decent. A few parts of it dragged, but the social media crap was toned down. The replays are still a bit much, as is reminding us what happened every five minutes, but there were some great parts to this show. Everything Kane and Daniel Bryan did was great. Ziggles and Orton had a good match, the tag match was decent, the main event was very good, and the twist at the end made it awesome.
DID SOMEONE ORDER A LARGE HAM?
Kane and Daniel Bryan tie for it. I can't pick one over the other. They were both great this week.
1-9-12 – R-Truth
1-16-12 - John Laurinaitis
1-23-12 - William Regal
1-29-12 - Ricardo Rodriguez
1-30-12 - R-Truth
2-6-12 - Triple H
2-13-12 - Shawn Michaels
2-19-12 – Santino Marella
2-20-12 - John Cena
2-27-12 – Al Laiman, for thinking no one read this
3-5-12 – John Laurinaitis
3-12-12 - James Roday
3-19-12 - Theodore Long
3-26-12 - Booker T
4-1-12 - Santino Marella
4-2-12 - Dolph Ziggler
4-9-12 - Will Sasso
4-16-12 - Daniel Bryan
4-23-12 – CM Punk
4-29-12 - Teddy Long's name tag
4-30-12 - John Laurinaitis
5-7-12 - Paul Heyman and Jeff
5-14-12 - John Cena
5-20-12 - John Cena
5-21-12 - Santino Marella
5-28-12 - CM Punk
6-4-12 - Michael Cole
6-11-12 - Ricardo Rodriguez
6-18-12 - AJ
6-25-12 - Chris Jericho
7-2-12 - Chris Jericho
7-9-12 - Daniel Bryan
7-15-12 - AW
7-16-12 - JTG
7-23-12 - Mae Young's son
7-30-12 - R-Truth/Daniel Bryan
8-6-12 - Daniel Bryan
8-13-12 - Roddy Piper
8-19-12 - Kane
8-20-12 - Paul Heyman
8-27-12 - Kane
9-3-12 - Kane/Daniel Bryan
Hey Jaded Hope fans, if you missed the milestone 75th episode of the show due to the technical difficulties on the 30 Thoughts that week, check it out here. It has a rocket launcher.