Sean’s Notes From Monday Night Raw (08/11/14)

Due to a scheduling conflict, I will be unable to appear on this week’s episode of your (hopefully) favorite weekly pro wrestling podcast, Doing The Job. Being the senior lead wrestling analyst of analyzations that I am, I felt like it would be difficult for me to leave these, umm, anylyzations all to myself. Besides, there has to be some voice of reason, since you’ll only get to hear from M2J and Denny Lugz this week. Right? Right.

The actual notes out of my book.

The actual notes out of my book.

Having said that, I figured I’d peel back the curtain a bit and let you into my notebook and the notes that I would have used for this week’s show. (And yes, I keep an actual notebook and write stuff with a pen like people used to do before the fall of civilization.) I generally just write bullet points, but for the sake of this article, I will expand where needed.

(Notes from Monday night are in bold, my expansion for this article is not.)

Heyman’s excuse that Brock was at only 50% in loss to Cena, and that now he’s at 100%
Loved this. Excellent heel logic in somewhat exonerating Lesnar from his 2012 defeat to John Cena.

Paul Heyman’s rap – YES!!
Best line: “I’m just Brock’s advocating Jew.” I really feel like this was one of Heyman’s best promos ever, and that says a lot.

Corporate Kane is back again – ugh.

Remember when Ryback was the one beating up two guys at a time?
Now Ryback is one of the two getting beaten by one; it is kind of funny how careers play out over the course of a couple of years. Also, shouldn’t have Reigns just beaten Rybaxel outright, instead of them losing by DQ, if he was just going to squash them afterward anyway? It’s not like it protected them at all.

Seth Rollins has a nice little match with Rob Van Dam

– Ambrose breaks out of giant present after Rollins’ paranoia
Overall I enjoyed this and it got a laugh from me, but still, it would have been better if Rollins had not suspected Ambrose inside that huge gift in the first place since he had no reason to. I’m just nitpicking a little, though. It was great.

Well, this cheating angle is one way to keep Daniel Bryan in the storylines
Sloppy Yes Lock by Brie on Stephanie, but still, makes sense
So they brought out Daniel Bryan’s (kayfabe) physical therapist and Stephanie got a confession from her that this woman his having an affair with him. Clearly it’s going to come out that this isn’t true. It would be easy to dump all over this new wrinkle to the story, but I want to see where they take it first. Oh, yeah, if you aren’t a part of our Doing The Job Facebook group, then you missed M2J’s keen “research” on the lady in question, which you can see here. You won’t be sorry. And if you’re not part of the group…join!

Another nice match between Swagger and Cesaro; Cesaro loses again by submission
I know Swagger is the one in a feud here, however, the losses for Cesaro on TV lately are starting to pile up. I’m not concerned, but still, I’m at least raising an eyebrow.

Interesting dialogue between Wyatt and Jericho – felt like Y2J could have said more
Another topic of conversation in our Facebook group on Monday night. Bray Wyatt is a phenomenal speaker with the way he spits his verbiage. I respect the hell out of him, but I’m just not with it. I find myself drifting during his promos, and it’s certainly not from boredom, but because they rarely make sense and worse, they never get explained after some grand scheme. Like I’ve been saying since he first came up to the roster, he belongs more in movies than he does in wrestling.

AJ falling for the same distraction tactics that she did as a heel
I know it’s wrestling and you let some things slide, but you’d think her character would be privy to Paige’s tricks since they are right out of her own book.

“When does John Cena turn?…”
Knew well enough to not get sucked in to where this was going, but still, it is always cool when Cena acknowledges many of our longings for maybe not a heel Cena, but at least a different one.

Whenever Cena pulls out a rap, it’s massively over with everyone in the crowd
Yeah, yeah, we are way too far removed from rapper Cena ever making a full-on comeback, but still…he’d be SO over!

Are they really doing this whole, “someone gets arrested thing” again, this time just with Brie Bella??
This segment REALLY bothered me. And not the fact that they played this card again, but how they played off Brie’s reaction. Considering how over with the crowd she has been as a massive face (who the hell would have ever thought) throughout this angle, she should have gone into “Austin 3:16” mode when getting taken out of the building in cuffs and been a total badass about it. NOW is the time to emphatically call Stephanie a bitch straight to her face on the way out. Instead, she cried like a little bitch with a skinned knee and lost practically all of her momentum and credibility going into the biggest match of her career on the go-home Raw to Summerslam, which, you know, is kind of a huge deal.

Furthermore, they had a chance to really boost the concept of the “powerful woman” after all these years since the Trish/Lita era, with a little Beth Phoenix sprinkled in afterward, and they basically showed us that all a woman is going to do when life punches her in the face is take the hit and cry about it. That was great for Steph when it happened to her a few weeks ago; she’s a heel who had it coming, and acted the realistic way that she did. Brie is the one we are supposed to live vicariously through to take down the evil baddie; this is where being a pro wrestler on TV, basically a near superhero, and bucking reality to act like it, comes into play. We should be fired up about Brie’s rage coming out of jail to kick the boss’s ass. Now we’re not. Whoever made the decision to have her react the way she did COMPLETELY dropped the ball.

Heath Slater is facing Dolph Ziggler – damn, I thought he was turning face

Whoa, HUGE Slater chants at the start of the match and afterward at the end!

Slater with another win! This is now an actual thing!
Was super stoked with how into Slater this crowd was, and I’d imagine it will be similar going forward. A telling sign of that was that this happened against Ziggler, too.

After the match, when the crowd was chanting for Slater before Ziggler dropped him with a Zig-Zag, I wonder if the cheap shot kick that Slater attempted on Dolph was improv and thrown in there so as to not draw heat on Dolph for being a sore sport in delivering his finisher without reason to the suddenly over-with-the-crowd Heath. If it was, that was absolutely brilliant. (These are the little things that a senior lead analyst of analyzations notices and why they get paid the big bucks, by the way. [And by big bucks, I mean zilch.])

Maybe this Orton/Sheamus match is good, I don’t know – I’ve seen it too many times
Admittedly, this was the one segment I didn’t watch much of. I said this in the group but I’ll repeat it: If you had to wager your life’s savings on an over/under of “Number of televised matches between Randy Orton and Sheamus,” with the total being 25, would anyone feel confident betting the under? Even at such a high number? I wouldn’t.

Hogan’s birthday celebration – I knew Hogan was going to shill the Network in here somehow

Was hoping Hogan tearing off the red and yellow for the nWo shirt would be an actual heel turn
I was kind of hoping after Hogan tore off his shirt to reveal the nWo one, the three of them would have tossed the legends from the ring, but I obviously know that was wishful thinking.

Lesnar! “Party’s over, grandpa!”

After Raw is over, the rest of this celebration should be on the Network – ok good, it is
To me, this is a huge benefit of the Network: to be able to see when they have celebration nights like this. But also, rather than a postshow, if perhaps we flat out saw what went down on some other random Raws after the show, kind of like the DVD they recently put out.


Alright, time for some nuggets to run down some smaller things I noticed from Raw:

  • Roman Reigns not wearing the gear with the yellow lines going down it this week. Going back to all black gear he had before it? I hope so.
  • On the topic of gear, Seth Rollins had a new t-shirt.
  • Additionally, John Cena also has new merch to plug, this one being red and yellow (perhaps in honor of Hogan?)
  • Somebody goofed and played the female bumper music to play off Dean Ambrose after he chased Rollins away. Clearly intended for Stephanie walking backstage to ring for next segment. Whoops.
  • Umm, after winning her match against AJ and celebrating on the outside, when they cut back to Eva Marie two minutes later so AJ could administer the beatdown, why was she all of a sudden hunched over as if someone had just attacked her? Did the Titty Master strike when we weren’t looking? I am extremely confused.
  • After this long string of great matches, especially at pay-per-views, how did the Usos, as the tag team champions, get lost in the shuffle heading towards Summerslam. That kind of, really sucks.
  • Did any of the commentators mention a reason why Ziggler was wearing Miz’s “Haters Wanted” shirt to the ring for his match against Slater? Even though he’s feuding with The Miz, I feel that still should have at least been brought up.
  • And finally, you guys know I like a good quote.
    The Miz on commentary, about bringing home a title: (Jim Brown) never brought a championship to Cleveland!”
    Rest of the commentators, and me at home: “Yeah, he did.”

And with that, nuggets are done and Owen Hart has left the building. And considering that this is the part where we generally end the show, I’m going to end this article.

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