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The Smark Henry RAW Review (11/11/19): OK Imperium



Stupid Lana being stupid fake pregnant with stupid Rusev's stupid child to lure stupid Rusev for another stupid dick kick from stupid Bobby Lashley was stupid. Sigh. 

Now that that's out of my system, why the hecking heck would you set the NXT UK wrestlers up for failure in their own country? I mean, sure, it's not their brand, but weren't there much better ideas floating around than having former NXT UK Tag Team Champions get annihilated by the RAW Tag Team Champions and the WWE United Kingdom Champion, who has a reputation of having great matches by the way, get DQ-saved from his stablemates against Seth freaking Rollins? Seth isn't even a champion anymore, bloody hell. 


Getting to see the WWE Women's Tag Team Champions, Asuka and Kairi Sane, collectively known as The Kabuki Warriors, in action is always a treat for me. I've been a fan of Asuka's WWE career since her NXT days, though she lost me when she got fed to Charlotte for "blonde" reasons on SmackDown, and Kairi Sane is just freaking fun to watch. Unfortunately, having them face RAW Women's Champion Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair here and in a title match sure felt a bit... odd, considering Charlotte was tagging with Natalya just a week ago and I didn't get the memo that Charlotte and Becky were friends again. Poor Natalya. Poor continuity.

I'm always concerned whenever I see Charlotte in a title match against Asuka because of their SmackDown history. I just feel like Vince's bias towards blondes and against foreigners who don't frequently speak fluent English is cancer when it comes to better talent opportunities. That said, thank you, NXT Women's Champion Shayna Baszler for making sure Becky lost this match. I was a bit surprised to see Bayley come out on top against Becky and Shayna in the post-match plug for their Triple Threat match at Survivor Series, but I suppose that was only logical because she did need to match the hype that Becky and Shayna have both brought to the table. I'm still not buying Bayley's chances in that match, though, but this was still pretty nice.


Randy Orton has been RKOing Ricochet from outtanowhere so much that I'm 100% with Ricochet's paranoia. I'll be in the superhero's corner against the Viper on this one. I bet it was also Orton who was behind Ricochet's smoke machine malfunction. That was obviously way too much smoke for that one entrance. Wait, was that what The Street Profits have been referring to as The Smoke? Wack. Bloody wack.

This main event was pretty fun, not surprising considering the talents involved, with the Randy/Ricochet thing making it so much more interesting than expected. Randy got me when he looked like he was about to RKO Ricochet, only to RKO AJ Styles instead. It makes me sad that The OC had to eat the loss here, despite their fantastic showing on last week's NXT, but I guess Humberto Carrillo had to pin AJ somehow and he sure as hell wasn't going to do it on his own. Wack. Wackity bloody wack wack.


Seth Rollins' open challenge segment in the ring sounded a bit... strange. Apparently, according to live reports, the crowd was way more hostile to Seth during this segment than what the broadcast showed us, with boos heavily drowning whatever he was saying. That would suggest that either the crowd noise was brought down to gaslight everyone else into thinking Seth's approval ratings are up again or edited completely. Nice. 

Thankfully, WWE United Kingdom Champion WALTER and his Imperium stable heeded Seth's call. In all honesty, I should've expected this to happen, considering where this episode was shot, but for some reason, I still popped like this was a pleasant surprise. Unfortunately, WALTER versus Seth was ruined for me by the aforementioned DQ loss. Why couldn't have WALTER won this match clean? They were in the U.K., anyway, and Seth could've just chocked it up to home field advantage. Also, wasn't this what happened last week with Seth versus NXT Champion Adam Cole (BayBay!!!) when the rest of Undisputed ERA mobbed Seth? What deja vu.

The succeeding eight-man tag between Imperium and Seth's randomized partymates didn't help. Kevin Owens will always be cool, though, and while Street Profits can be annoying at worst, they're still a pretty fun tag team. Imperium, however, isn't just a tag team. Imperium is an actual stable. Imperium should've won this match because logically they should be a well-oiled four-man machine with more experience teaming together than Seth, Kevin, and non-Cryme Tyme. So now, Imperium has lost two matches in a single episode of RAW despite having home field advantage and logically superior experience as a bloody stable. What a bloody waste. Owens' superkick-heavy hot tag and Montez Ford diving out into the announce table were cool, though.

RAW REVIEW: I was informed, immediately after finishing this week's episode, that this was actually pre-taped. I think I knew that but somehow forgot. Life, am I right? But I digress. Even if I were to use that as an excuse for what felt to be filler segments, the decision to make NXT UK look like chumps instead of champs in their own home turf, as well as more Rusev dick kicks was just plain horrible. I'm giving this week's RAW a C for "Crumpets... Soggy ones at that."   

Quick Hitters:

  • Sin Cara is back to square one apparently, as his decisive loss to Drew McIntyre, his missing luchadora ally, and his tweet about asking for his release all add together in support of that idea.
  • Wait, you can defend the 24/7 Championship in an actual match inside an actual ring? Huh. I thought it's just supposed to be a comedy bit—Oh, wait, Rowan just threw a couch at the Singh Brothers. LOL.
  • Zelina Vega continued Andrade's winning streak, this week at the expense of Cedric Alexander, while Zelina Vega's husband continued to shoot his spooky vlogs. Wait a second... Are these two things going to merge, giving us another epic dose of an Andrade versus Alexander Black match ala their NXT days? One can only hope.
  • Lana actually delivered her monologue well and her acting wasn't too shabby either. Unfortunately, the content given to her was hot garbage.  I've seen Rusev's dick get attacked by Bobby Lashley so many times now, I'm starting to think Lashley and Rusev's dick are going to have a match at Survivor Series. Winner gets Rusev's tank. Remember Rusev's tank? Man, that tank was cool.
  • Rowan has a new mysterious box. What could be in this box? Is it going to be a pet bird because he had a feud with Daniel Bryan and Daniel's kid's name is Birdie? Is it going to be Luke Harper's WWE contract lol? Wait, it's not Eddie Guerrero's son's birth certificate, is it?
  • Okay. The Viking Raiders needed to squash another tag team this week because... reasons, but did their victims have to be a pair of former NXT UK Tag Team Champions? Mark Andrews and Flash Morgan Webster deserved better, to be honest, and should've beaten another team for that sweet, sweet hometown pop, not further the perception that NXT UK is inferior to RAW. Also, hasn't Imperium lost enough on this episode to make NXT UK deserving of one win? Bloody hell.
Images from WWE


*****

Jofer Serapio (@ShawarmaJoereviews WWE RAW for Smark Henry. He has been an avid professional wrestling fan since grade school. These reviews are as close to professional wrestling as he can get. According to him, Kevin Owens is his best friend in the whole wide world. Get those welts, Seth.

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