Video: Damien Sandow's Raw Pre-Show meltdown (and why it already feels half-assed)

WWE is playing worked shoot around the fringes again. And while it would be great for mid-carders like Damien Sandow if these spots ever lead to anything, the lack of attention to detail doesn't instill much confidence in the target audience that it will.

WWE has released this clip from the WWE Network exclusive Raw Pre-Show featuring Damien Sandow's "worked shoot" interruption of the panel that consisted of Josh Matthews, Booker T, Jimmy Hart and Alex Riley.

Here's the text for anyone who can't watch the video:

Can you hear me? Can you guys hear me? What? You guys can hear me? I heard you can actually be on this show and not wear a superhero costume - is that true? Right? I don't have to dress up in a Halloween costume? (To Jimmy Hart) You've been dressing like a Valentine's Day card for thirty years, but we're the WWE we put smiles on people's faces, right?  Hey, after this stunt, I'll probably end up teaming with Yoshi Tatsu and never get a microphone again, so we're gonna make this count.

On behalf of myself (handheld mic cuts off), on behalf of the WWE Universe, on behalf of everyone...

Josh Matthews: Mr. Sandow?  They killed your mic.

What? My microphone isn't on?  I guess I'll just use yours, Josh.  Why would they kill my microphone? I have no idea. Do you think they're afraid? Someone in the back's afraid...it's a publicly traded company...what am I gonna say? Are you afraid, Josh? ARE you afraid, Josh? No.

Because when  you're afraid, accidents happen.

First, I do sincerely hope that this is the start of something for both Sandow and the entire WWE mid-card scene.  He's a solid worker with above average promo ability who seems to be legitimately quick on his feet when interacting with fans and other performers.  His descent from possible World Heavyweight Champion last summer after claiming the blue Money in the Bank briefcase to comedy jobber a year later is as puzzling for fans as it must be frustrating for him.

But I'm not any more confident in the angle leading anywhere for Sandow, especially since similar segments haven't resulted in much for Dolph Ziggler or The Miz.  Geno already pointed out the obvious problem, after this bit and a similar segment on the main Monday night broacast, The Intellectual Savior was part of the crew that ran out to assist Evolution in the main event.

There are two other reasons that this feels like either a storyline Sandow came up with on his own or that someone in Creative offered to placate him because it wouldn't interfere with anything else and they didn't have anything else for him to do anyway.

  1. Why the cryptic "they're scared of me" rhetoric?  Anyone that this angle is going to appeal to shares his complaint, and it's nothing mysterious - it's how he's fallen down the card in the past year.
  2. If the powers-that-be are in fact afraid of him, so much so that they're cutting audio every time he gets near a microphone - why are they releasing footage of it three days later?  Wouldn't the 'Reality Era' dictate that they try to hide the clip?  Yes, it's nit-picky and they are an entertainment company trying to promote their product.  But if you're going to run a meta angle for smarks, try to adhere to some storytelling logic.
It's frustrating, because Sandow deserves another chance to connect to audiences as something more than the heel Santino Marella, and there could be a fun, different story in the 'mid-card revolt' teases they've been doing for a while.  But these little inconsistencies make it seem like this story and/or the players they're using don't have a lot of (or the right) backstage support, and will ultimately end up as a footnote to this time in WWE.
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