After a surprisingly decent Survivor Series, last night’s WWE RAW was a mixed-bag of mediocrity. Some of it worked. Some of it didn’t. Still, at least El Torrito wasn’t featured heavily – or maybe I Just fell asleep during that portion of the show.
Do you like tag-team wrestling? What about WWE’s new odd-couple tag-team division? Michael Cole calls it the “best it’s been in years.” Then again, Michael Cole also tells me the same thing every week about RAW. But seriously, internet smarks have demanded that WWE go back to basics with the tag-team division, and the company has done exactly that. The number of tag-team matches last night were astounding. The sheer number of tag-teams is also somewhat baffling, until you consider that making two guys a team requires almost zero storyline planning, whereas creating singles feuds takes at least a little bit of creativity.
At least Cody Rhodes and Goldust – whatever their tag-team name is – continue to look like superstars. Every week, as the tag division becomes more credible, and the titles rise in prestige, these two men become more over. While I question the decision to have them lose cleanly to Big Show and Rey Mysterio (MysteriShow? You heard it here first!), these two teams put on one heck of a show, and the loss opened up the door for an interesting feud. My hope is that WWE doesn’t flip either of these teams too quickly. A face vs. face tag-team feud could really grab a lot of genuine fan interest in the championships again, and it would be a smart way to utilize all three veterans. Still, keeping my fingers crossed for Rhodes vs. Rhodes (Cody against Goldust) at Wrestlemania…
My other gripe here is that MysteriShow and ‘The Rhodes Less Traveled’ (again, first!) both faced off at this past Sunday’s TLC. Why does WWE continue to give away their Pay-Per-View matches the night after on RAW? It makes no financial sense. Even IF ppv’s become free under the new WWE Network umbrella, this over-saturation of similar matches continues to water down the product. Nothing is special if you do it 15 bazillion times – just ask Dixie Carter. So CM Punk against The Shield just felt like deja-vu. At least in the Dolph Ziggler/Fandango rematch, Ziggler finally scored a win… even though he looked weak in the process. Maybe it’s time for a “show-off” redemption storyline?
The main event, with Orton vs. Bryan, was a hot match… but the finish not so much. Bryan looked awesome. The finish made him look like a fool, though, and having John Cena come down to rescue him made me feel sorry for “the bearded one” (yes, WWE Creative, you can steall all my monikers). I’m glad Orton stood supreme by knocking out both Cena and Bryan, but I’m not convinced this storyline is headed in the right direction. Also, where does Bryan fit into things? He’s proven that he’s better than both Cena AND Orton, yet, it looks like his feud with Bray Wyatt is far from over. Wrestling logic 101 states that the hottest guy in the company deserves a title run. Nowhere does it say “make your most popular asset lose all his matches, then stick him with a mid-card guy who is sometimes questionable in the ring.” Bah.
I’m about done with The Authority. One night they come out and side with the heel champion, and the next they book him in matches he’s bound to lose because they “always listen to the WWE Universe.” Pro tip: if you want to make your bad guys look… well, BAD… then have them do bad stuff. Simple.
Overall show was something you could afford to miss. The wrestling was decent, especially if you’re a throwback tag-team kinda guy, but nothing shocking, or even remotely surprising, happened. Remember when the night after Pay-Per-Views were must see TV? Me either.
How did you feel about last night’s WWE RAW? Let me know in the comments below! And check out Between the Ropes on Facebook and Twitter for your latest pro-wrestling news and opinions.