I don’t know how I get sucked into it every time, but I get excited for 3-hour editions of Raw, only for my memory to kick in from the last episode… and slowly plan my evening away from the TV. The opening segments of these abortions are usually more than enough of a reminder that 3 hours is too much for WWE to fill on TV.
It baffles my mind that the WWE had both brands present at the show, had 3 hours of airtime to fill, and only managed 4 matches (5 if you count Sheamus vs Jinder Mahal, and I don’t count it). While those matches were pretty good, it’s still fucking blasphemy.
So, brain, next time the WWE hypes up a 3-hour Raw, remember to get the laundry ready, don’t do dishes immediately after dinner, tell the dog he’s getting a bath… there will be a 3 hour block in the evening where you can get all these things done without missing a step.
As for the content itself, it was a very below average edition. The wrestling was solid, but took too long to get started, and I barely cared by the time these matches took place. Maybe the goal is to create a tease as to what’s to come, and hope we stay on the same channel (stream). Maybe I’m out of the ordinary, but this kills my excitement, and by the time something interesting occurs, I’m heading to bed, or more interested in the snacks I’m eating.
I won’t pretend to have all the answers for booking the WWE, and anyone on any site who tells you they have the answers is full of shit. BUT, I don’t think it would be hard to structure shows differently so we could wade through the garbage, with something more involving before and after. The Slammy segments are atrocious for the most part, so after each announcement, a promo might not be the best idea. HHH was painful with his microphone time: “It doesn’t matter who is right, but I am right…” Terrible. And as entertained as I was by CM Punk’s promo about John Laurinaitis, there’s no doubt it went over most of the audience’s head.
Big Show delivered the perfect promo, in that he cut it short and sweet, and then headed to wrestle. This format was simple and easy, and should have been the formula for the evening.
But, alas, it wasn’t.
Also, the Slammys have jumped the shark… as odd as it seems. Though they never had any credibility in the first place, this year was the most painful. Especially when the WWE is hyping a King of the Ring DVD, yet haven’t had a King of the Ring for over a year.
Fucking awful Raw.
The Most Wonderful Time of the Year
I can say with the utmost certainty that this is the best time of the year to be a WWE fan. It’s always been my favorite time, as the Royal Rumble will never be anything but the best and most fascinating event the WWE puts on every year. I’m not saying the Rumble is always the best show, but I anticipate it much more than any other, and it’s got the best value. Wrestlemania disappoints almost as often as it surpasses expectations, while the Rumble has been the single show I look forward to the most since 1990 (the first one I really paid attention to).
Now, Survivor Series in general is just as ‘hit or miss’ as Wrestlemania, so I find that the post-Survivor Series timeframe to be where my attention on the WWE is impossible to waiver, especially since the advent of the TLC PPV. Out of every one of the most recent gimmick PPVs (again, these aren’t new as the Rumble and Survivor Series were the original WWF gimmick PPVs) TLC has had the best track record of hype and delivery (Money in the Bank takes 2nd spot). So the build up the TLC takes me by surprise each of the last 3 years now, as I was so used to lame In Your House/Vengeance/Armageddon events.
Thankfully TLC starts the Road to Wrestlemania off right, as it has recently, and Royal Rumble continues the tradition of kick all sorts of ass. This leads to the Elimination Chamber, which ends the Road at Wrestlemania.
The WWE falters often, but as much as they lose track, the effort is amped up to 11 when it gets to this time. I’m sitting back, and looking forward to everything that seems to be coming my way.
I am quite excited for the return of the Big Red Monster. I couldn’t care less about the mask, and I had hoped he would have returned without it. Anyone who claims that the mask will be a sign of the return to form of old Kane is fucking retard. A mask does not make a wrestler better, nor the creative team behind him. It’s just a mask. The only benefit to a masked return would be for merchandise, and I see very little room for him in the top of the card as a face. He needs to be a heel when he returns, no matter which brand. It’s a strange first appearance, as facing off with Cena isn’t the most heelish thing one can do.
As for the Guinness Book of World Records… I fail to see how impressive it would be. And with the world of Sports Entertainment being known for exaggerating truth (Wrestlemania 3 live attendance as an example), I don’t doubt that this record will be broken with or without Kane, Sin Cara or Rey Mysterio in high profile. If it’s that important, make the masks 5-10$ Wrestlemania weekend. Stupid.
Kane ended up on Raw, which makes the most sense, as he’d be a great giant for CM Punk to overcome, and oddly enough, he’s never feuded with John Cena. I’m interested to see where it goes, but due to the Wrestlemania main event being set, it’s rather obvious how this one will end.
I like the guy, but his welcome is rather worn out already. He’s possibly the best “big man” of all time (I’d say top 5 easily, and I am having trouble naming a better one, in my opinion) and deserves a lot more credit than he gets for his talents. He was stuck with a rather terrible gimmick for wrestling, and has made it work without any serious changes for almost 15 years now.
At this point, we as fans should be happy he’s still in the main event mix, and with something as simple as a heel turn, can be a major threat to a main event title. If he’s only got a year of wrestling left in him, it’ll be a lot more than most people would have received.
As a Jericho-holic, I’m hoping the rumors are true, but for some reason I’m doubting it. The WWE overrates the worth of Undertaker (he has a higher overall rating in WWE’12 than everyone, including Cena and HHH!?!?!?!) and would easily give him this sort of promotion without any logic towards it.
The return of Jericho wouldn’t honestly add too much to the main event mix, because the main event hasn’t changed too much since he’s left, especially as a heel. He’d be a much better asset as a face, to give the upcoming heels someone to work with in the upper tier. Guys like Del Rio, Miz, R-Truth, Wade Barrett, Dolph Ziggler, Christian, Cody Rhodes...etc. They would all benefit from working with Jericho, while as a heel, he’d only have fresh angles with CM Punk, Daniel Bryan… and that’s it really.
Jon Jones (is a super hero)
I enjoyed a great night of UFC fights on Saturday night. I’m one of a few MMA fans that enjoy the longer and more methodical fights than the short spectacles, but I cannot complain about anything I witnessed during UFC 140.
I am usually mostly entertained by the preliminary fights, usually broadcast on Facebook. While there’s more intrigue when you know the fighters, and you definitely start pulling for favorites when you have a knowledge of everyone involved, there’s a great deal of excitement when watching 2 guys you know nothing about. And these guys want you to remember them the next time, so they tend to fight less safely than the standard fighter, so we see highlight reel flashes of brilliance from time to time, usually on a more regular basis than on the main cards. UFC 140 was an exception, but that was because the main card delivered more than normal, and not because the prelims sucked.
But there’s no doubt that the highlights of the show were on PPV, including 2 brutal submission victories in the main events. First, Frank Mir tried to make literal sense of “rip off his arm and take it home” as he nailed on a vicious kimura on Big Nog, who has never submitted in his career. Mir broke the bone, and left Nogueira looking like a 12 year old after his first bicycle accident.
That’s no joke.
But, the best part was definitely the main event, and watching Jon Jones live up to my favorite Joe Rogan call of all-time “Jon Jones is a Super Hero!”
Jones had a variation of a standing guillotine choke on who many perceived to be the biggest threat to the 23 year old Light Heavyweight Champion of the world, Lyoto Machida, and won his 4th fight of the year. Machida faded away in an unexciting looking choke, and the arm dropped limply to his side. Most of the commotion was outside of the cage, as fans were pointing towards the dead weight of the Dragon’s right arm for Big John McCarthy to notice and end the fight. When the referee announced the fight was over, Jones dropped Lyoto like a corpse, face first to the mat.
The sudden rise of a new star has taken the UFC by storm, as fans are having as hard a time accepting Jones as they have Brock Lesnar. Old school fans (the sport is not even 20 years old, yet somehow there is an ‘old school’ group) are refusing to give this phenom any credit, because he doesn’t fit the mold. Lesnar was a fake fighter, and Jones is a cocky American who didn’t work in Japan or Brazil, or whatever other complaint people have about him.
The fact remains that he’s one of the most marketable fighters on the UFC roster, and fans don’t like how he’s head and shoulders above the guys tht have slowly earned their spot.
Jones earned his title shot almost as a fluke. Earlier this year, Rashad Evans was declared #1 contender for the LHW title, but then fell to an injury and couldn’t face the champion. After Jones won a PPV match, Joe Rogan announced to the world that since the spot had opened up, Bones had been offered the opportunity.
Naturally he accepted, and he’s been dominating the title scene all year.
Somehow, this irks people, which I find funny. He puts on amazing entertaining fights, offers a different style than most of the other UFC fighters, but it’s not enough to please everyone. The finicky fight fans are anticipating his failures as a way to say “I told you so, he was always a flash in the pan.”
Four wins in 2011, including 3 title fights is not a flash in the pan. He may just be the future, but with GSP injured, Brock no longer as champion (and often out of action), and Anderson Silva out of credible challengers, as well as on the shelf until June, the time for the UFC and their fans to accept Jon Jones are one of their main draws is now.
And on that note, peace out.
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