Took you long enough. Before I start, I have to ask; which of these promos was giving you hassle?????
Anyway, while I thought the show could’ve been spread out a little better - the back to back promos to kick off the show being my main gripe, you’ve shown just why you’ve been missed so much around here in your absence. Given the way last weeks show ended, it would’ve been odd not to address it at the beginning of this show. I know these shows were written quite some time ago, but I think $250,000 is a bit over the top as a fine - even though the actions of Triple H WERE excessive last week, it just seems too much.
Regardless of that piece of nitpicking, the suspension - whilst making sense - caught me by surprise. With only a couple of weeks until Summerslam, I had that match (Angle vs. HHH) down as a lock for the card, but now … I don’t see it going down at that show, unless of course, Angle turns up next week and demands the suspension be lifted to he can take on The Game at Summerslam. Although of course, it doesn’t look like Trips will be taking the suspension lightly, and looks set to fight it all the way. With the in and out booking of Triple H since WM, showing up for a week or two here and there, it seems like he is certainly being phased out, and keeping him off the Summerslam card would be another indication that that is what the future holds for him in the thread.
Something that I really love about your writing is that you do the little things - which are important - and it brings a smile to my face every time. Classic example was the end of the Triple H promo, where he swung out at the security team and told them to get off him. It was something simple, but most - myself included - wouldn’t have thought of the subtle touch to add the swinging out at the guards, and would normally just use the dialogue. Like I said, it’s the little things.
Now, while I didn’t like the idea of back to back promos to open the show, I can see the reasoning behind it. It saves Styles from going back to ringside to call the action and then come back to the stage for one, and it also follows on from the incidents at the close of last weeks show. And yes, I loved this promo. You’ve just showed anyone in the BTB section that doesn’t ‘get it’ just how good the pay off can be for a slow burn angle. It’s rewarding for you - the writer - and it’s rewarding for the long term readers, who having followed the “friendly” rivalry between the two best friends and tag team partners, are now finally getting to see it become something MUCH MUCH more.
Haas was terrific throughout the segment, not finding the funny side to Benjamins explanation for Karen Angle taking the title belt last week, and then getting very ‘precious’ about being replaced by Benjamin last week, saying he wouldn’t want to team with anyone else if Shelton wasn’t around. It would appear that Shelton going and getting a stand in for Haas is the proverbial straw that broke the camels back for jealous Charlie, and with Haas right on the brink of turning heel, I think the dynamic at Summerslam will be MUCH different from the one we got at Backlash, and I cant wait to see it!!
Slowly but surely, you’re building up the credibility of Helms and Chavo as a team, and I’d imagine with the impending break up of TWGTT at Summerslam, they will slot in as the top face team on Raw, and could probably move straight into a feud with the seemingly ‘champions in waiting’ the RNWC. As for the Spirit Squad?? Without Kenny, I don’t think they’ll feature too prominently in the near future on Raw somehow.
Who could be bringing the fight to Raw?? Hmm… my guess would be Elijah Burke perhaps, given his previous boxing experience, but apart from that, I’m pretty much devoid of ideas as to who it is you are bringing in.
For months, I’ve been wary about how credible Carlito would be as a potential challenger - or even champion, once he cashes in the briefcase - as he either couldn’t buy a win over a big name, or couldn’t win matches cleanly. Whilst he’s consistently been one of the more entertaining aspects of the show, with Torrie and Masters by his side, he’s lacked the quality of a main eventer … but I think that’s all about to change. Foley just pointed out ALL those flaws in Carlito, addressed all his broken promises, all his boneheaded fuck ups, and questioned his ability, going as far to say that he’ll be doing him a favour by taking the briefcase from him if he cant win at Summerslam. Surely, Carlito beats Kane at Summerslam, and begins to show that he can beat the biggest names?? Surely, KANE isn’t going to be carrying the briefcase around after Summerslam???
Yeah, Mickie James continues to be a “brain-fucked bitch”. Nicely said, but I think there is still something to come from this feud before Summerslam; be it an in ring promo, or some kind of beat down on Trish … but with the fucked up mindset of the champion, ANYTHING could happen with Mickie James, lol.
Another rather odd segment, although fantastically (especially Striker) written. I’ve been unsure as to where this angle has been going for a while, with Strikers ‘classes’ focusing seemingly only on Orton and Richards. I simply cant figure out what Striker is up to; from kissing Ortons ass to calling out Richards for his losing streak and association with ECW. Where this is leading to?? I have no clue, although obviously with his championing of Orton and dislike for ECW, the Orton vs. ECW angle will meet with this at some stage. But it’s certainly intriguing me.
Orton LOSING to Tanaka completely took me by surprise. Tanaka, whilst not being prominently featured on Raw, has proven to be a match for anyone in his few appearances (going the distance with Angle) and although the decision was reversed, Tanaka pretty much picked up a clean win over Orton here, and that REALLY shocked me. Orton moves another step closer to an ECW title shot (and with only one guy left to face, I wonder how they‘ll find a bigger challenge next week), but Tanaka being equal to the top stars on Raw is the big thing I’ll take away from this match. I just wonder if you have something big in store for Tanaka, or whether you’re simply protecting him to make a win over him seem like a big deal whenever it does happen.
I love how you’ve completely reinvigorated Cade and Murdoch in this thread from the goons they were for the majority of their real life WWE run. This promo wasn’t a paint by numbers, standard heel thing. This perfectly captured both men’s individual characteristics and mannerisms. Smackdown may have the more exciting teams, but RNWC are my favourite team you’ve got going, and it’ll be a shame if they lose again in two weeks on Raw. I think it’s time they held the gold - they are certainly ready for it.
You’ve caught a lot of flak for the misuse of Big Show since he won the title, and while I think I’d like to see him destroy a few jobbers some night soon, this promo at with J.R was tremendous. Bearer was brilliant as ever, and the ‘ants fighting over a grain’ was a great line - especially since he referred to Kane as an ant, putting over just how monstrous Big Show is.
The match between Kane and Van Dam was a decent encounter too, and although both are face (Kane is kinda always stuck in tweener purgatory to me) Kane was definitely the aggressor, with his desperation at wanting a piece of Show. Had to laugh at the antics of Carlito, getting his briefcase back … then losing it again, but with Summerslam approaching fast, it was only right for Van Dam to win this one, even if he did need an assist to put Kane away. The little touch at the end with RVD placing the briefcase back beside Kane was funny too.
And the segue into the main event was nicely done too, with Cena attacking Masters right out of the commercial … but obviously this segment wasn’t about the match … it was about Shawn Michaels latest sick stunt. Two guys in the car with HBK … one called Kev … assuming it’s Nash and either Hall or Waltman. I don’t for a second think you’ll bring all these guys in as the Kliq, but (if I’m right about my hunch) it was a nice touch to use his friends on the segment.
What Cena thought he could do by running from the ring in New Jersey, while this incident was going down in Boston, I’ll never know
. But if this feud needed any further fuel to the fire - this was it. Cena already wanted to literally kill Michaels … for this feud to end conclusively, he might have to do it at Summerslam. The seriousness of the situation - with Funk and Dreamer both coming out looking concerned - helped sell the video, whilst I have no doubt Masters and Carlito will be crowing about Masters ‘victory’ over Cena.
Great hook the close the show on, as we now all want to see what will happen next week - and what actually happened after the video ended.
It’s been a while since I wrote any kind of feedback, and a lot of this was basically handing out endless praise, and not overly ‘feed backing’, but hopefully, if you decide to post on a regular basis
… and I’m not too lazy
… I’ll get back in the swing soon enough. Glad you’re back, you’ve been missed.