Ain’t nothin’ but a heartaaaaache...ain’t nothin’ but a miiiiistake...
(You think I wouldn’t drop Backstreet Boys lyrics at the start of my Raw review? Think again, nerds.)
I have mixed feelings – but mostly positive – feelings about this show’s Ronda Rousey vs. Bella Twins segment. It had all the things you need to sell a fight. And while most people would call Rousey the star of the show, I’d argue that someone outshined her.
Rousey came off a bit corny to me to start the segment. She was acting all fragile and hurt by the Bella’s actions and that’s just...not her. Doesn’t work all that well. Luckily, Nikki came out and gave her a reason to fire up.
According to Nikki, Ronda Rousey is a loser who doesn’t deserve the spotlight that the Bellas have created for her. They created it, by the way. And that WWE Women’s Championship? That’s them, too. Wouldn’t exist without them and only them creating it.
Also, what’s so bad about the word Divas?
Y’all. Nikki said all the right things. She knocked her part of this out of the park. The Bellas are so hateable right now.
To her credit, Rousey rallied. Once she raised her voice, I was very impressed with her performance. That Cena’s bedroom line? Killer. It’s the sort of line made for social media, and while I get that folks aren’t always happy about folks thrusting a consensual sex life around as if it were an insult, it sells the show. So, whatever.
My only issue is...good god. Some of Rousey’s lines were awful. Sister soldiers? Do nothing Bellas? My goodness, this writing.
The Bellas hid behind some bodyguards and tucked tail as soon as Rousey started ripping throws. Guess we’ll have to wait until Evolution!
Y’all, I can only take so much.
This show opened with the Dogs of War gloating and it was just...I’m over it. I’m over their trio, I’m over their story. I’m over it.
So thank god it ended. Finally, mercifully, the Dogs of War alliance seems finished.
There were two qualifying matches on the show for WWE World Cup or whatever the hell it’s called: Dolph Ziggler vs. Dean Ambrose and Drew McIntyre vs. Seth Rollins. The entire show was used to tease more Shield tension, too. Ambrose jumped in to help Rollins when Ziggler had interfered too many times, taking a blow for Rollins that allowed him to secure the victory.
Would there be reciprocation? Not quite. Ambrose needed some help, too, but Rollins’ aid wasn’t enough to help him Ambrose put away Ziggler. The Shield brothers argued heatedly on the ramp before Reigns rushed out to mediate.
Corbin booked a 6-man because he’s a doofus, so the Hounds and Dogs squared off one more time in the main event. Reigns had to mediate once again, and he got beaten to smithereens for his troubles.
However, the Shield found a way. After Rollins got pushed into Ambrose for the third time in the same night, the duo put things aside to set up Reigns for a Spear. 1-2-3, the dissension seems to finally be put to rest.
(Not buying it.)
Meanwhile, Strowman is a menace and started bullying Ziggler for taking the pin fall. He hit Dolph with a running Powerslam, only to be taken out by a Claymore from McIntyre.
Like I said earlier, finally.
I’m wearied from this whole storyline. I feel like I could really get into McIntyre going on a run, but I’ve just seen too much of all these guys for a while. Hopefully, WWE will move to other stories for a bit. Maybe Rollins and Reigns can actually defend their friggin’ titles?
What the hell, Brothers of Destruction? - What on earth was that ridiculous boiler room promo with the cheap sound effects and weird lighting? I guess the substance of the promo was okay if you could get past all the goofiness. Shawn Michaels stayed away from fear, not respect, blah blah...
This was entirely too corny.
Ember Moon and Nia Jax def. Dana Brooke and Tamina – Welcome back, Tamina! Maybe I just wasn’t in a wrestling mood for this show, but everything about this was taxing. WWE announced a battle royal for Evolution with the exact same stipulation as the Royal Rumble. Not great. Corey Graves immediately picked the biggest competitor for the battle royal (Jax) as his favorite, and that’s such a dumb trope by this point that it ticked me off as well.
Secondly, what the heck happened to Brooke’s storyline with Titus Worldwide? Did that ever get resolved? I can’t remember. I was so annoyed by that that I didn’t even watch this match!
Finn Balor def. Jinder Mahal – The best promo of the night was Bobby Lashley mean-mugging Balor after he squashed Mahal. That’s right; Lashley’s deadened stare officially counts as a promo. Good god, I’m so into Lashley all of a sudden.
Also, Lio? I need you to go through all the senses of Bobby Lashley. “That’s right, big man! You look like money! You smell like money! And you KNOW he tastes like money, people! Ahh-huh!”
Bliss/James vs. Stratus/Lita segment – Only thing worse than the Trish Stratus and Lita team name? This segment. They literally did the entire Iverson “practice” bit to tepid applause. I’m asleep. I’ve got ZZZ’s spewing out of my mouth and I’m just rambling at this point. Am I alive? Is this a dream? A simulation?
AoP def. “Kurt Angle” - I’m right at the threshold of folks who get your Fear and Loathing line, Michael Cole. I’m 25. Also, Drake Maverick, can I have that jacket? I’ll Venmo you. Better yet, bill Geno for it.
This whole thing was a ploy, by the way. Baron Corbin is literally the stupidest person on the planet. Did you really think that Angle would wriggle his way into that Magnum condom wrapper again?
Natalya, Bayley and Sasha Banks def. The Riott Squad - Renee Young calling the Riott Squad the WWE’s version of Hocus Pocus is so on point. Y’know, except they shoot silly string and ketchup at doors instead of sucking the souls out of little children.
Oh, and welcome back Sasha!
It’s Apollo’s Turn to Interrupt Elias – I’m actually cool with this feud. I mean, trying to heat a face when they’ve been in the bleachers for so long in one week doesn’t work, but this has potential.
This show was so weird. Some parts good, some parts bad. Not good enough to cause enthusiasm, not bad enough to make me hate my life and wish I had permeation and could disappear like Mirio Togata.
Evolution should be fun, though! What say you, Cageside?