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The Smark Henry RAW Report (8/21/17): I Can't Feel My Face When I'm With You


It’s the day after SummerSlam, meaning we get the same, loud Brooklyn crowd on this week’s Monday Night RAW. The crowd was really vocal about everything; you’d think you were at a PWR show!

SummerSlam wasn’t very controversial on RAW’s part. This week’s episode predictably had championship celebrations more than it had to address any controversy.



We all know that no championship celebration on RAW ever ends without someone interrupting. Braun Strowman seems to be next in line to the Universal Championship, following the beatdown he gave Lesnar the night before, enough for the champ to be taken out by a stretcher. That received major pops, and it was obvious what the WWE Universe wanted to see next.

So what you see is what you get! That’s a first. Fitting, if you ask me, for a pay-per-view called No Mercy, which is exactly what the two monsters are expected to show each other by then. I really can’t complain with this one and I can’t wait to witness the buildup! Dang, who to cheer for?




Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose coming out with the RAW Tag Team Championships is something I will never not cheer for. The pair make a great babyface team, but were then challenged to a non-title match by the Hardy Boyz, who are, well, also faces. It was an amazing match and it was certainly a treat for all, but didn’t start nor develop any storyline. So I guess the champs are on hold for now. Thank you, WWE, for not properly thinking this division through—we now lack interesting teams to have our awesome champs feud with to make their reign worthwhile.

Whatever script was given to these guys that night was a little off, too. The Hardy Boyz aren’t that old, are they? I mean, these guys are legends but they sounded a little bit condescending and really old.



Switching gears, Jason Jordan was finally seen with his dad, General Manager Kurt Angle backstage. It’s simple interactions like this that remind us that Jordan isn’t just some jabroni. Well… Supposedly.

He asked for a random match against Finn B├ílor, out of all people, and it became another face vs. face match that only reminded us that Jason Jordan sucks as a babyface by himself and probably needs to turn. That, or he just needs to project more, more, more! He’s boring and awkward, and has showed much more personality in the two seconds he was at Southpaw Regional Wrestling as Porkchop Jones than his entire run as a singles competitor. So far, that is. Though seeing him with his dad helps you want to cheer for him a little bit, I doubt it’s ever going to be enough—so hopefully this is a start of a “spoiled” and/or “frustration” angle that will soon enable him to turn on the fans. Embrace the boos!



Another face receiving boos was Sasha Banks. That was actually painful to watch at home as you could witness the crowd slowly wipe the smile off of her face in High Definition. Poor girl tried to get the cheapest pops by mentioning Ric Flair and then she smirked and giggled because she knew very well it was a good move on her part. Crazy. Again, here, no new challenges either for the champion as Alexa Bliss gets her rematch against her next week! I feel like I’ve seen this way too many times...

Man, what was up with the faces getting booed so hard that night? Clearly the Brooklyn crowd didn’t have time to check out the recent video of John Cena getting a cute surprise from his fans and sob. I sobbed, everybody sobbed, and now you should, too. You’re welcome.



So yeah, this was painful, too. I don’t care about Roman Reigns, but Cena? CENA?! The man has literally saved lives with his message, while Reigns’ catchphrase is “it’s my yard!”

Okay, I got a little carried away there—back to RAW. So John Cena returns to the Red Brand after a short while because apparently, one way to become a free agent in the WWE is to simply declare that you are one. What’s a Superstar Shakeup if I can just switch to the other brand next week!?

Anyway, the match was okay, and they did a good job trying to ride the flow that the crowd was basically dictating them to. You’re probably thinking, “well, that’s their job!” but not when the crowd was vocal about pretty much everything but the match.

I also found it odd that Samoa Joe was paired up with The Miz—you could easily tell who was going to take the pin here, and it’s ironically the only champion in the ring. Sad.


It did, however, give Miz the opportunity to talk his way into the main event after having to wrestle in front of literally 50 people the night before, and bless us all with a real and solid segment with Cena. I’m not too sure how much of that is really scripted when you put the best talkers in the company in one ring—but Cena really did seem like he was provoking and challenging the Miz on the mic, to which the latter took and made it into something beautiful.

The crowd was really messing everything up cheering for the “wrong” people, but thank god for these two! Oh, and yeah, Reigns was somewhere in that segment, too—because let’s not forget, while The Miz probably stole the show, the main focus here is on Cena vs. Reigns.


SummerSlam
is a big event—in fact, it’s the first runner-up to WrestleMania, and people expect so much out of the RAW episode the day after. People were expecting an Undertaker appearance, an NXT call-up, or a brand new storyline to really brew up. Unfortunately, none of those really happened and the show didn’t deliver. We’re off to a very slow start for No Mercy, so let’s hope the next couple of weeks pick up the pace. I grade this episode a C+!



Quick Hitters:
  • Elias Samson! Okay, I’m starting to get hooked. Do you see how good something can become if the crowd just became a little more involved? When the crowd was clapping along to his song, you saw the genuine look of confusion on his face but turned it around quickly and it was brilliant! I actually laughed out loud and I think he’s a good heel. I’d like to see more of Elias!
  • Enzo Amore vs. Big Cass in a Street Fight started off weird, and ended abruptly when Cass tweaked his knee. I swear it’s a clusterf*ck. But I’m a positive person, so let’s focus on the pros rather than the cons: I have a feeling Enzo will make a fool out of himself down at 205 Live with the great wrestlers, but at least we won’t get to see him ruin himself on the main card of a PPV again! Cass is apparently out for about 6-9 months and we wish him the best, but if anything, he’s probably sighing of relief that he somehow pulled himself out of this mess! Also, we can now use their forfeited dozen of minutes for something actually worth watching! And last, but not the least: the roster is probably now happier knowing they won’t need to share a locker room with a Trumpie at WrestleMania 34!


Photos by WWE

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