It’s been a while since I’ve done the Best and Worst of RAW, so I’ve decided to start again. Here’s what I liked and didn’t like about RAW last night. “Best” is what I liked, and “Worst” is what I didn’t. Easy enough right?
Worst: Deja Vu
This week’s opening of RAW was completely unoriginal. We had Kurt Angle come out to complain about Brock Lesnar’s attitude and lack of frequency competing once again. You’d think Angle would remember that he had the power to strip Brock of the title at any time or all of this year at any point, but is just now getting mad about it. Corbin is standing there berating Angle like we haven’t seen him do the same thing a thousand times over by now. Then, out comes Roman Reigns, who’s here to talk once again about beating Brock Lesnar and how he’ll be a champion we can be proud of and we’re all happy. Then, Roman takes a shot at Corbin for standing there while Lesnar F-5’ed Angle last week, and bah gawd we must have a match. But not just any match. An 18-minute match.
Seriously, what’s the obsession with lengthy RAW matches featuring Baron Corbin? He went 20 minutes against Balor last week and 18 minutes with Roman last night, and both of those matches were meh at best. Any match involving Baron Corbin that goes 2 commercials is bound to be lethargic, and this was what this entire segment was. It was unoriginal, things that we have seen before, and far too long. Nothing about this added to the Roman/Lesnar match, and Corbin’s presence here was pretty unneeded. Oh, and if you didn’t get enough of the 20 minutes of Balor and Corbin last week, then you’re in luck because these two will be fighting again for no reason at Summerslam. ARE YOU NOT ENTERTAINED?!
Worst: Mojo Rawley vs. Bobby Roode
I like what they’re trying to do with Mojo Rawley, but my word, what in the hell is going on with Bobby? I’m tired of the camera going into his shiny robe and just having a shot of him smiling. This dude is an absolutely deplorable face, and while I’m not saying he’s the most entertaining guy in the world as a heel, he’s far and away better as that. Some men aren’t meant to be good guys, and Roode is one of the worst good guys I’ve seen. People who smile obnoxiously and excessively are extremely punchable. I actually thought it was a mistake to give Roode the win here, because not only did he not need it, Rawley is the guy that WWE was trying to build momentum for. How are you going to have him bad-mouth the jobber portion of the RAW locker room just to have him lose clean to a more established guy the next week?
Add in the fact that Roode’s matches these days range from bad and boring to passable at best, this was a below average segment. No one came away looking better from this and just felt like a big waste. Back to the drawing board.
Worst: Titus vs. Rezar
Doesn’t that sound like the title of an action movie pitting two huge brutes against each other? That’s because it was, but it was freaking awful. More specifically, Titus O’Neil. My word, Titus O’Neil. This guy is one of, if not, the most awkard and clunky wrestler I’ve seen. I could have sworn I saw Titus try to find Rezar’s wrist for a good 10-15 seconds just to do a simple Irish whip. His punches are cartoony, his moves resemble more of an uncoordinated football center than a competent wrestler, and he’s just, quite frankly, out of sorts. It makes you wonder why Apollo Crews was the one taking all of the pinfalls in their tag matches. Titus has absolutely nothing for him, and while he makes for a terrific WWE ambassador, I’d be completely content if I never saw him wrestle again.
Him giving punches to Rezar’s chest resembled more of a mother disciplining an out of line child with a belt. Meanwhile, the Authors of Pain have about as much heat on them right now as the state of New York in December. They’re just two characters who look like The Shield on HGH. Without Paul Ellering, what are they? Two oversized brutes in military gear that rarely speak English. Oh no, you monsters. Again, another pointless segment that didn’t do anything for anyone. Can anyone remind me what they were fighting over again?
Best/Worst: Summerslam Pre-Show Material
We then got Elias plugging his documentary and album out on iTunes and worked for the crowd like a fiddle as per usual. He was great manipulating all of the camera guys and he did his usual shtick, which was fine. But then Bobby Lashley came out just to say that his sandals were stupid. Is this 4th-grade art class? This feud really has no legs to stand on other than the fact that Lashley made his return at Elias’ expense, and all of a sudden Elias remembers that, and now the two hate each other because Bobby doesn’t like Elias’ singing or whatever. This is quite clearly going to be in the cool-down portion or pre-show slot of Summerslam. While I didn’t hate this segment, it didn’t really add anything to the show. It sort of just existed for the sake of existing, much like a lot of this show.
Worst: Are We Going Somewhere With This?
You wouldn’t think the Kevin Owens show would be such a bore to watch, but man we are surely just wasting time on this edition aren’t we? Kevin Owens comes out to speak to interview Jinder Mahal (he’s actually just talking to himself with Jinder nodding his head in agreement with everything), talking about how both of them beat Strowman and how Jinder’s relaxation techniques have helped Kevin Owens find his fifth chakra or whatever.
Then, a magical earthquake takes place from underneath them, and while it’s not an ambulance, it may do. It’s everyone’s favorite Monster In The Bank (they’re really shoving that down our throats). To keep up with the tune of unoriginal segments and matches, we get a rematch of Jinder and Braun from last week. You see, in case if it wasn’t obvious enough, WWE is pushing the narrative that if Braun loses in ANY fashion, he loses the briefcase. I’d think the stipulation that if Kevin Owens wins, he gets the briefcase, is quite obvious enough, no? Kevin distracted Braun last week, giving Jinder a count out victory. This week, Kevin does the exact same thing, but this time, the briefcase accidentally hits Jinder, giving him a DQ victory before running away.