Got a Viking Experience? I bet they’re gonna raid yaaaaaa...
Hit or miss is how I feel about Raw right now. There are some acts and moments that totally hit with me. Anything the Usos do is fantastic, for example. I’m loving what Lacey Evans is doing to act as a foil to Becky Lynch, and you can just go on ahead and inject everything Sami Zayn’s doing into my veins, thanks. The matches, as always with this crop of talent, are super fun as well.
And I was going to start this review with a huge, colossal miss...until I saw something that cracked through the general sardonic attitude that I have when I watch Raw, something that had me giggling with delight by the end.
Bray Wyatt...you mad genius, you.
I’m a sucker for genuine mind games. When WWE says some wrestler or another is playing mind games, that’s a miss. However, when Wyatt’s doing a damn Mr. Rogers impression and wielding a chainsaw, cackling as he saws through a cardboard cutout of himself?
DING DING DING WE’VE HIT THE JACKPOT.
Oh my god. I can’t even, y’all. Oh my god. I’m still laughing in delight over this segment. It’s such a cataclysmic shift from what Bray was doing in the past, and yet there’s clearly going to be an element of unsettling...Bray-ness about the whole thing. He’s wearing two gloves that say “HURT” and “HEAL,” for example. He’s talking about a buzzard doll and a gothic witch doll as if they aren’t...you know. Terrifying.
The key here is going to be the details, as it always needed to be with Bray, and I’m really hoping they get it right moving forward. Bray’s always been a personal favorite of mine, and I still can’t contain my excitement for the potential here – especially on a version of Raw lacking stars at the top of the card.
YOWIE WOWIE! Let the Firefly Fun House commence!
Sami Zayn is a global treasure
You know how social media sucks sometimes? If you’ve ever spent some time online – and I have a sliiiight suspicion that all of you frequent the good ol’ interwebz from time to time – then I’m sure you’ve had a bad run in with social media somewhere in there. Sami Zayn right now? He’s all the bad parts of social media.
“Hey guys! Look at how happy I am! I’m SUPER happy, you guys! Look at my cool trip to Switzerland! Look at my cool trip to Norway! Look at my cool trip to Mexico!”
If the gratuitous my-life-is-better-than-yours treatment wasn’t enough, he’s ALSO the toxic part of social media. The “well, actually” side of social media. The “I never even asked for your opinion and yet you’re GIVING it” side of social media. It’s fantastic. I love the dude, and yet he’s getting on my nerves. I’m grinning at his antics, and yet also grimacing at his antics.
The best part is that everything’s a lecture with him, man. And yet...he never gives reasons. How are we at fault, Sami? Sami says he’s holding us accountable. Cool. What does that even mean?! He’s not trying to solve anything, he’s just like, “Ha! Figured it out! It’s your fault, suckers!”
Sami Zayn is the best thing on Raw, and the only person who could even challenge him at the moment is Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared Bray Wyatt.
The miss at last, I guess
Y’all, I hated this opening segment. It had me wanting to turn the channel until my mind reminded me that I get paid for these things.
It started with the commentary team announcing the premise of the show: two triple threats leading to a singles match; the winner gets Seth Rollins at Money in the Bank.
Cool! Very succinct! Let’s jump into it!
...Nah. Not quite. Instead, Triple H got a full entrance, Seth Rollins got a full entrance, and then they went through the whole “ha look at us now after WrestleMania geez this is wild!” thing that every single wrestler has done for two weeks now.
And then, those two announced what commentary had already said to us, the viewers at home. And THEN, all of the six challengers came out to deliver uninspiring promos which was followed up by another uninspiring one-liner from Rollins, which was THEN followed up with the realization that Triple H’s entrance was LITERALLY for nothing at all.
Got all that? Cool. I’m already emotionally checked out. And that sucks because in terms of wrestling, both triple threat matches were pretty great! In the first one, Styles hit Mysterio with a Styles Clash onto Samoa Joe – a phenomenal finish. In the second, Miz tried his best to outlast Corbin and McIntyre until getting caught with a Claymore and Cobin sneaking a pin attempt for the win. Another good finish!
It’s just...it’s Raw, man. It’s the bad stuff you inevitably get when you watch Raw. Anyway, AJ Style is facing Rollins at Money in the Bank. That’ll rock.
Naomi def. Billie Kay – The match was shorter than the IIconics promo, and honestly that makes them even funnier. Not even mad.
Cesaro def. Cedric Alexander – In case you needed a sign for how unprepared WWE is/was with this whole Shakeup business, WWE shot Cesaro’s entrance as if he were in The Bar. Uh...he isn’t. Fix that.
With that said, fun match with no real stakes. I wish something had happened here to make this match matter other than showing Cedric off in a loss.
Usos sleepin’ on The Revival – That’s the right response, Jimmy and Jey. Also, that drinking and driving line. Wooooooooo...
The Viking Raiders def. Lucha House Party – Now their finisher is called the Viking Experience. Ryder called them “hairy and horny” backstage which is a better team name to be honest.
Becky Lynch def. Alicia Fox – I dug this segment between Lynch and Evans. I also liked how Lynch leaned a bit into the weirdness of Evans bragging about “currying favor” last week. The first Woman’s Right was weird-looking, but in all this was fine.
Robert Roode def. Ricochet - “Here’s a video explaining Robert’s new name and mustache.”
*WWE shows video that does neither of these things.* ... ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
This was a solid C show with some brief flickers of A+ sprinkled in. Just give me a healthy dose of Bray Wyatt, Sami Zayn, and Lacey Evans please. My god, what a sentence.
Your turn, Cageside. The comment section is a safe place. All you have to do is...let me in.