Ugh. I’m not really in the mood for this show right now. Let’s see if the show can turn that around. Let’s roll.
I watch 30 minutes of RAW, leave for work, and watch the rest while I write this recap. The only rule is that Kodos must appear at some point in the review. Also, screw you, SmackDown review!
First 30 quick recap: Vince McMahon and Brad Maddox kick off the show, and McMahon makes fun on Daniel Bryan. Bryan comes out and tells Vince that he’s said himself that it doesn’t matter what he thinks, it matters what the WWE Universe thinks. The fans cheer for Bryan, and McMahon tells him he doesn’t think he’ll even beat Kane tonight, let alone John Cena at SummerSlam. Actually a very entertaining segment.
Mark Henry & The Usos vs. The Shield
Dean Ambrose pins Jimmy Uso with his forward DDT finisher. Mark Henry attacks Ambrose after the match and takes out Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns as well.
Still to come, it’s Daniel Bryan vs. Kane, and John Cena vs. Ryback in a tables match. Cole asks Lawler about Ryback. King says Ryback is despicable. We’re shown footage from earlier at catering, where Ryback bullied some random dude trying to eat. Then he puts the dude through the catering table.
<COMMERCIAL BREAK. Maybe I’ll put something here later. But it depends on my mood.>
We get a video package highlighting the Wyatt Family.
Kane is in Brad Maddox’s office asking where the Wyatt’s are. Maddox says they’re not here. He says if Kane wants to send a message to the Wyatts, show them he’s still a monster, then what better way than in his match with his good friend Daniel Bryan?
ONE OF A KIND!
RVD and his rectangular pyro are back on Monday Night RAW to take on Fandango, NEXT!
<COMMERCIAL BEAK. That wasn’t a typo. Summer Rae came out as soon as it came back from break. So, beak.>
There’s a dude in a Ride The Lightning t-shirt, and a promo for WWE Battleground, which is here in Buffalo. RVD patiently waits for Fandango to finish his dance.
Fandango (w/ Summer Rae) vs. Rob Van Dam
My friend is bored and texting me because he apparently just heard Jimi Hendrix for the first time. I’m not texting him back because I don’t feel like it. Much like watching this show. Though this match is pretty decent so far. Fandango ducks an RVD kick and absolutely waylays him with a roundhouse of his own! Ouch! RVD takes control back and dominates for a minute before Fandango rolls out of the ring. Summer Rae stands between RVD and Fandango, and Fandango bails, earning RVD the count out victory. Fandango takes the mic after the loss and tells us his name.
Backstage, AJ is complaining about having to face Kaitlyn. She complains that Big E lets her get speared every time, then she laughs. She says he likes her. What she does in the ring. She says he never knows what she’s going to do next.
Kaitlyn gets the jobber entrance. AJ comes out after the break. Apparently this is a non-title match. Yay.
AJ Lee (w/ Big E Langston) vs. Kaitlyn
AJ works over Kaitlyn’s arm. It’s all AJ early on in this one. Kaitlyn finally starts to battle back into it, using her power, but that doesn’t last long. The WWE Universe tries to will her back into it. This match is very slow. Their PPV matches have been good, but this one is slow – until Kaitlyn spears AJ out of nowhere for the victory. AJ throws a tantrum after the match. Big E tries to calm her down, but Dolph Ziggler comes out. He congratulates AJ on her loss, and says Big E can be her shoulder to cry on, and later on she can be his shoulder to cry on – because Ziggler wants a match with Big E right now!
Big E Langston (w/ AJ Lee) vs. Dolph Ziggler
Big E works over Ziggler, telling him his time is up. Dolph tries to use his quickness to turn things in his favor, but Langston is just too strong. E delivers an Ultimate Warrior like splash, but Ziggler kicks out at two. Big E is dominating this match. It’s interesting to note that Cole acknowledges the “trending now” graphics – even though this show is taped. Ziggler finally starts to get back into it, sending Big E to the floor. AJ jumps in the ring and onto the back of Ziggler, causing the disqualification. She slaps and claws at Ziggler, and pulls his hair. Ziggler gets out of the ring, and Big E asks AJ what she’s doing. AJ drops to her knees and weeps. Big E shows concern, but eats a Zig Zag for his troubles.
Backstage, John Cena is on the phone, but hangs up when Daniel Bryan shows up. He asks Vince McMahon was telling the truth when he said that Cena only wanted to face Bryan because Bryan can’t beat him. Cena denies it. Bryan says Mr. McMahon has always been honest with him. Cena asks if Bryan is calling him a liar, then walks off.
Ugh. Christian. And he’s facing Alberto Del Rio. JBL is in Switzerland climbing Mt. Blanc. So… fuck.
Christian vs. Alberto Del Rio
FFW! This match apparently got some time. Why, I have no idea. Christian ducks a running ensiguri, Del Rio escapes the Killswitch, Christian escapes the cross armbreaker, and rolls up Del Rio for the three count. Whoop-di-do.
Still to come, a tables match between Ryback and John Cena. Whoop-di-do.
Wade Barrett is in the ring, awaiting his opponent, who is Cody Rhodes. You know, since Barrett got new music, I think I’ve only seen him get a TV entrance once or twice. What I want to know is, since the MITB briefcase probably drowned in the Gulf of Mexico, does Sandow still get his title shot?
Cody Rhodes vs. Wade Barrett
After what he did to Sandow last Friday, how is Cody Rhodes the face in this feud? He’s a sore loser who stole something from somebody else because he didn’t get his way. I like both of these dudes, but this is another slow match. I might just skip the rest of this and watch the “RAW in roughly 5 minutes” series on YouTube. Oh no. Cody’s terrible moonsault looked better this week, but he still missed wide. Barrett, to his credit, sold it. Rhodes reversed a pumphandle slam attempt into a Cross-Rhodes for the victory. Damien Sandow comes out after the match to damn Cody for throwing his briefcase into the Gulf of Mexico. Sandow filed a complaint with WWE Management. During their time together, Sandow enlightened the world, and Cody, well, Cody grew a mustache. He says Cody comes from a family of clowns and threatens to send him back to the circus. On second thought, carny folk are beneath him.
Up next, it’s Daniel Bryan vs. Kane!
Wait wait wait wait wait… the number one sports DVD in America is WWE’s “Greatest Stars of the 90s?” Didn’t that come out over a year ago? I know it’s been on Netflix for a while. Anyways, I digress. Back to the show.
Is my phone ringing? No. So that must mean that Daniel Bryan is on his way to the ring! Yes! Yes! Yes! And since he’s facing Kane, I fully expect the Wyatt Family to show up. I sure as hell hope they do. #FollowTheBuzzards
Kane vs. Daniel Bryan
Team Hell No explodes! Cole explains that the rumors going around say that if Kane wins, he’ll be the number one contender following SummerSlam. So, in that case, let’s go Bryan! And since Kane is in control, FFW! I fast forward to a D-Bry missile dropkick, and the pace picks right up! Until Kane takes over again. Kane goes to the top rope and nails the clothesline. Vintage Kane, even though Cole didn’t say it. Bryan goes for the Yes Lock, but Kane overpowers him. Bryan dropkicks his leg out from under him. Kane catches Bryan’s kick, goes for the chokeslam, but Bryan rolls up the Big Red Monster for the three count! After the match, Kane chokeslams Bryan. Bryan leaves after the replay, and Kane goes to set off his pyro, but instead, we get the Wyatt Family!
Bray Wyatt leads Erick Rowan and Luke Harper to the ring. When he blows the lantern out, Rowan and Harper are in the ring, but Kane runs right after Wyatt, but Wyatt escapes, and the family get hold of the Big Red Machine. Kane puts up a valiant fight, but the family are too much for him. Harper and Rowan put Kane down, and Wyatt enters the ring. They hold Kane up for Wyatt, who nails Kane with Sister Abigail. Wyatt says he heard Kane call himself the Devil’s Favorite Demon, but he is no demon. And the Devil? Wyatt lets Kane in on a secret – he should be careful who he says those things in front of, because you never know who may be listening. Follow The Buzzards!
Brie Bella is in the ring, and so is Natalya. I hear Total Divas wasn’t bad. I can’t say for sure because I didn’t watch it.
Brie Bella vs. Natalya
I don’t see Nikki out there with Brie. I also don’t see Brie’s little friend that showed up on last week’s RAW. This match isn’t horrible. I mean, it is, but it’s better than it should be. Pair that with the lackluster other matches on this episode and it looks way better than it should. The Wyatt Family are trending on Twitter. I wonder if Lawler and Cole are sitting in a studio in Stamford doing voiceovers when stuff trends. Nikki distracts Natalya with a duck call. Because, you see, they called her an ugly duckling earlier in the show. Get it? Anyway, Brie rolls up Natalya for the win.
Paul Heyman is with Curtis Axel, who is in action, next!
R-Truth gets the jobber entrance, and Axel is presented like a star. I wonder what’s going to happen here. Heyman introduces himself, and finds it ironic that their opponent tonight is R-Truth, because his truth is that he’s the most exclusive manager/agent/whatever in Sports Entertainment history. Take Brock Lesnar, who at SummerSlam will end the career of CM Punk. They call it “The Best vs. The Beast.” Take Curtis Axel. Being a Paul Heyman guy means you are among the elite circle in sports entertainment history. Axel points out that his father won the Intercontinental Championship in Texas, and became Mr. Perfect. Axel says he’s already more perfect than perfect.
Curtis Axel (w/ Paul Heyman) vs. R-Truth
Axel is all over R-Truth in this one. The fans chant for CM Punk, and they get him! Punk runs down to the ring and takes out Curtis Axel. He looks across the ring at Paul Heyman. He chases Heyman down, but Axel catches up with him. Punk and Axel battle, and Punk clotheslines Axel over the guardrail. Punk hops up on the announce table to watch Heyman escape through the crowd.
Stephanie McMahon and birthday boy Triple H are walking backstage. Up next, it’s Cena vs. Ryback in a tables match.
Triple H confronts Vince McMahon. McMahon says he’s using reverse psychology on Bryan. Triple H points out he can’t say it with a straight face. McMahon says he wants somebody to beat John Cena. Somebody like Triple H, but 20 years younger. Stephanie McMahon says they should help Bryan’s image along. They should give him a corporate makeover. Vince says “good luck with that one.” Triple H says it’s worth a shot.
John Cena is out first for his match. There are tables everywhere. Ryback comes out and it’s match time.
Ryback vs. John Cena – Tables Match
I just don’t give enough of a fuck about either of these guys to care about this one. Especially since this was one of the stages of hell at Payback. And Cena won that, much like he’ll probably do tonight, since he’s the Champion and facing a guy who’s not even on that level at this point. Cena pulls a table out from under the ring. Despite the fact that there are tables set up all over the arena. They go to commercial before Jerry Lawler can finish a sentence. On a taped show. Somebody is getting fired over that one. Cena locks in an STF, and Ryback breaks it by crawling through the ropes. Cena tries to throw a table at Ryback, but Ryback hid under the ring, then speared Cena after he crawled out of one of the adjacent sides. Two tables are set up, bridging from the ring apron to upturned steel steps. Could make for an interesting finish. Cena escapes Ryback and shoves him into one of those bridge like setups, knocking it over. Ryback tries to throw Cena through the other one, but Cena winds up escaping and ending up on the other side of the table. Ryback shatters the other one with the steel steps. Cena and Ryback both have steel steps in their hands. They try to throw them at one another, and wind up back in the ring afterward. Cena hits the protobomb on the bottom half of the steel steps, which was in the ring. Five knuckle shuffle (OF DOOM!) while Ryback is lying on the steps. Cena grabs a table, but Ryback gets right up and nails his sit-out jawbreaker thing. Ryback props the table up in the corner, then nails Cena with the meat hook clothesline. Cena gets up, ducks a charging Ryback, then nails him with the AA through the table, picking up the victory.
After the match, Daniel Bryan skips his way down to the ring and grabs the WWE Championship. He gets in the ring, and hands it to John Cena. Or at least acts like he’s going to. He snatches it back before Cena can take it. Cena snatches it from Bryan. This is Jorge’s cue to talk about snatches. This is my cue to leave, since RAW is over.
Thoughts: I got through RAW two hours earlier than I did last week. I guess a lack of graphics in a review will do that. The difference is, it feels like it took longer to watch this episode. Most of the matches were slow and plodding, and the matches that should have sucked looked ok by comparison. Hopefully when RAW is live again next week, we’ll be done with autopilot mode and back to a good solid episode of RAW.
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