WWE returned to the USA network for Monday Night Raw last night (Nov. 25, 2013) from the Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, New York, featuring all the fallout from the Survivor Series pay-per-view (PPV) that went down this past Sunday night in Boston, Massachusetts.
Click here for full results and the live blog from the show if you missed it. Let's get right to reactions. Remember, these were written as the show moved along with real time reactions to everything that occurred hour-by-hour.
- I love that fans in Uniondale tried to chant for Daniel Bryan and put the "YES" in there when they could. Keep putting it in WWE's face that they totally botched his brief main event run and title chase. No, we aren't happy about John Cena and Randy Orton once again having everything be all about them and we'll show it with chants because, well, there isn't much else to do. We could just leave, I guess. Ugh.
- That said, I like the way this was set up. I love it, actually. Simple, clean, and effective. Cena is world champion, Orton is WWE champion. Cena believes that's silly and they should find out who the actual face of WWE is by having them wrestle to determine one true champion. Sounds like unification and we're all happy, right? WRONG. It's more like two guys wrestling over two belts and WWE making sure to never mention the word unification. Because merchandise sales and propping up the "B" show is still important and stuff. I guess.
- Really, though, the problem here is they're going to give us the biggest bullshit finish in history with Cena grabbing one title and Orton grabbing the other and Michael Cole, JBL, and Jerry Lawler acting confused on whether the match is over or not and how they should sort it out as TLC goes off the air. "Tune in on Raw tomorrow night when we figure all this out!" What sucks is I think that's not an awful story to tell, especially considering where it could lead -- namely huge Royal Rumble implications and an eventual unification at WrestleMania 30 -- I just have zero desire to pay $65 to see another screwy finish after like six months of them.
- I'm really, really, really in love with The Shield. Like, I love The Shield as much as I hate Curtis Axel. That's a lot. I'm becoming really overbearing, though, so I'll just leave it at this: The Shield are everything. They are all and you are none and just deal with it.
- Here's our weekly reminder that The Miz is awful. That line on the distance between the New York Giants and the playoffs was really good but he had to go and blow it with the snarky crap about being a bad guy. Terrible.
- Absolutely loved Titus O'Neil playing the role of Michael Strahan with the fake fap in his teeth and everything. Then trying to put himself over while acting as Strahan? Brilliant. Please, push this guy.
- Strahan is a solid TV presence with Kelly Ripa but get him away from pro wrestling. "Tonight is going to have a double team tag team main event." Thanks, Mike. Way to take the Teddy Long cue and go the easy way out. What was amazing about this is WWE saved this segment, including having Strahan welcome us to the show like 35 minutes into it, for the open of the Washington Redskins vs. San Francisco 49ers Monday Night Football game. Miz and O'Neil failing to hip toss a retired defensive lineman just to set up Strahan busting out a hip toss of his own? Come on, now. This was terrible.
- I'll give credit to Miz and O'Neil for trying to keep the crowd into a segment that was dead right after Strahan showed up.
- A Mark Henry-Big E. Langston tag team? Yes, please! I like how WWE just ditched any pretense and decided to have these two just run through Ryback and Axel. That's how it should be.
- All that said, this was a terrible hour of television.
- Oh and the kickoff to hour two? A rematch of the Total Divas vs. the Non-Total Divas. The kicker? It was the exact same match they had at Survivor Series the night before. So you paid for a match that they gave away for free not 24 hours later. That's some TNA shit.
- My new dream job is to be "guy who carries gimmicked trash can to the ring during live episode of Raw for Hamptons Hardcore match". That dude looked miserable, didn't he? Probably not as miserable as the rest of us were with the way this show had played out up to this point.
- Since when was Dolph Ziggler a pandering babyface? I guess if you can't get legitimate heat go for the cheap stuff. I will say that I support Ziggler and Damien Sandow having a series of off the wall hardcore matches. It's not like they have anything better to do. And, yes, it was not lost on me that these two former champions in waiting have literally been reduced to wrestling each other in a pile of garbage. Whatever, it's fun enough.
- Okay, so Strahan joining the Wyatt Family entertained me.
- I'm for anything that involves more Renee Young in our lives but it kind of sucked to just see her stuck between Daniel Bryan and CM Punk while they tried their best to play off each other in an entertaining way. Maybe the negativity of the rest of the show is wearing me thin because I wasn't as big a fan of this as I felt like I should have been. And the three team names Punk suggested could be improved on too.
- So, in addition to getting the Total Divas vs. Non-Total Divas rematch from Survivor Series for free, we get Punk & Daniel Bryan vs. the Wyatt Family rematch only this time it's a 3-on-2 with Bray Wyatt actually wrestling? So we're getting the better match for free after paying for the lesser match? And not only that, it was a much better match! I'll stop complaining about this particular issue now but it doesn't help WWE's cause to do things like this. I think the "Big Four" PPV concept is officially dead. It's more like a the "Big Three" or, if we're being honest about it, "Big Two".
- So the Wyatt's kidnapped Bryan. And The Shield murder death killed Punk. I don't know what the ever loving fuck is going on here but yeah, it happened and more things will happen later. I'm looking forward to the later in this instance.
- Side note to The Shield's attack on Punk. As he left the ring, Roman Reigns, god among men, came out of nowhere and leveled him with the spear. I was streaming Raw on my computer last night so I could have the football game on my TV and just before the spear hit, my stream skipped and my computer froze briefly. Roman Reigns broke my computer with his spear on Punk.
- Confession: Thoroughly enjoyed the way The Miz and Kofi Kingston started their match, playing on the handshake and slap the latter delivered to the former at Survivor Series. The old handshake fake into the slap and the immediate surprise by both right into aggressively attacking each other. Pitch perfect, all the way around. Little stuff like this helps make characters/matches/angles.
- I love the idea that a conversation was probably had among the powers that be that Miz had to go over on Kingston because he needed to be protected for the ABC Family Christmas special. We all realize that probably happened and how utterly ridiculous it is, right?
- The three faces of Mick Foley selling merchandise was more entertaining than 85-percent of the rest of this show.
- Good to see Xavier Woods getting a shot on the main roster with a relative "push", as it were. That said, it's inexcusable that 3MB went back to simply being 3MB. The town-to-town gimmick was a good compliment to the greatest jobbers in history.
- Okay, the backstage segments with Strahan were awesome. They failed hard when he was in the ring but that bit with the Divas and Goldust was great.
- Of course Stone Cold Steve Austin was The Rock's greatest WrestleMania rival. They had three matches at the show. That alone made it an easy vote.
- It occurred to me at some random point during the main event match just how totally devoid of interest any of the four characters are. You've got stale Cena, boring Del Rio, monotone Orton, and Show, who is a hell of a performer but has struggled for over two decades to get people to care about him. The upcoming story could be good to great but the characters involved leave so much to be desired. They've just been around and doing this on this level and in this spot for too long. There are folks who have said we should be satisfied with Bryan getting a four month run in the main event. Yet here we are with a group of guys who have spent the past few years in this spot, some for much longer than that. It makes it harder to care about what they're doing.
- Another concussion angle? That makes 46 for this year, right?
Most of this show was absolute trash with a few good moments.
That's it from me, Cagesiders. Now it's your turn to sound off in the comments section below with all your thoughts on last night's show. How did you feel about it?