Knee-Jerk Reaction (RAW 05/30/11)

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Great… With today being Memorial Day, the next PPV being Capital Punishment and Vince loving to suck up to the military, I just know tonight’s RAW is going to be very patriotic. I mean like disgustingly patriotic. It doesn’t help that Cena’s new colors are red, white & blue either. I’m hedging bets on two things: 1) Cena leads the crowd in a ‘USA’ chant, and 2) they play that ridiculous Barack Obama video and show that stupid caricature picture of Obama at least twice. Because making fun of the President of the United States is how you show your patriotism…

WHAT I LIKED:
Technical Difficulties: Just when I was beginning to roll my eyes at the opening Memorial Day video, I get a reprieve from the Gods of false patriotism. It was pretty funny to see R-Truth rambling and not being able to hear him. He’s as crazy when he’s mute. But I gotta give a huge discredit to Jerry Lawler for blaming the technical difficulties on R-Truth. “He might have pulled a plug.” Only in your hair, Jerry. WWE is usualy much, much better than this. I’m honestly surprised the technical issues lasted as long as they did. Rest assured that Vince is somewhere backstage tossing steel chairs around and elbow dropping them. Somebody’s job is in jeopardy.

Ziggler vs Kofi: What was the point of cutting Ziggler’s hair and coloring it brown, if they were just going to go back to bleach blonde? I get the feeling they were trying to make Ziggler look like more of a top-level superstar, but I thought he looked just fine the way he did. WWE might not have bought him as World Champion during his feud with Edge, but I did. Edge did a marvelous job of putting him over – and WWE did a great job of destroying everything Edge did. Figures. Now, he’s back to challenging for a mid-card title instead of being in the upper echelon. They really should have left him on Smackdown. The same goes for Kofi Kingston. Albeit, this was a Smackdown-esque match, which is a good thing. A very good thing. These are the kind of matches they should feature on RAW more often.

Alex Riley: Lost in the Cena/babyface bashing last week, I didn’t remark on how excellent the segment between The Miz & Alex Riley was done. And it was done to perfection. I have to give credit where it’s due and both Miz & Riley deserve a lot of it. That was awesome! This segment… not so much. But it was Micheal Cole in place of The Miz, so what could you expect? It’s annoying how fickle the crowd is. Two weeks ago, they were booing Alex Riley’s head off and now they’re cheering him like he’s a SUPERFACE or something. I am so glad I am not a mark. I liked Alex Riley in NXT. I liked him as The Miz’s suitcase holder and so far, I like him as a babyface. He’s doing a great job of erasing all the embarrassing memories of the very recent past. Remember the “That’s why they call you John,” toilet joke from about a month ago? Yeah, he still has a ways to go before I forget that.

Mysterio vs Punk: This match had to receive a LIKED commendation. The rivalry between these two men last year won my award for BEST RIVALRY OF THE YEAR. Punk was also the BEST HEEL THE YEAR and Mysterio the BEST BABYFACE OF THE YEAR. That just shows you how much I loved that rivalry – before Wrestlemania 26, that is. Afterwards, it got a little hokey. It’s weird how many superstars RAW poached from Smackdown in the draft and in trades. It seems like almost every decent match that occurs on RAW these days come from superstars who were on Smackdown less than a year ago. Also, I noticed that Punk was back in black tonight. I’m sure Vince gave him a stern licking over wearing gear akin to Randy Savage last week. Mysterio, oddly enough, was wearing the Nexus colors of black and yellow. You’d think somebody would have noticed that and made him change. I like that they went straight from CM Punk to Stone Cold Steve Austin. If Austin were ever to come back for one more match, Punk is the only guy I’d want to see him face off against.

Kharma: I’ve never said this before, but Fuck You, Jim Ross! How dare you tell anyone that they’re too fat to do anything. That’d be like me telling someone they have too big an ego. Kudos to Kharma for telling it like it is. Kudos to WWE for allowing Kharma to be honest about her pregnancy. I thought for sure they’d come up with some asinine excuse to explain away her absence. No offense to Kharma, but I hope in one year, if she does comes back, that the Bella Twins will have been gone from WWE for a whole year.

WHAT I HATED:
Alberto Del Rio: Another guy that Edge put over big-time and WWE is currently dragging down. I thought he was drafted on RAW to feud with Cena and remain a main-eventer. Instead, he’s being put in a rivalry with Kane & Big Show? Don’t get me wrong – I like Kane, but he’s nowhere near the caliber of opponent that Del Rio deserves in the ring. Not that Cena is any kind of wrestling aficionado, but at least then Del Rio gets the push of being in the ring with the top superstar in the company.

Divas: Being a PG-rated, family-friendly show, WWE can’t exactly show the divas in all manners of undress anymore. So, what do they do? Show Eve Torres and Kelly Kelly, stretching and bending over backstage. Real subtle. My only question in relation to the divas is a simple one: Where do they go from here? Kharma won’t be around anymore, and I can only assume the reason why they put the title on one of the Bella Sluts was so Kharma could destroy them and take it. Whatever they do, or wherever they go from here, they must get that title off of Brie Bella posthaste. It loses what little credibility it had to begin with every second. A tag team match with probably the four worst wrestling divas is not a good start.

Swagger vs Bourne: I can’t believe they’re making an entire rivalry off of Jack Swagger’s victory lap. There are so many other things they could be doing with Jack Swagger right about now to capitalize off the boost he received from being associated with Micheal Cole. That was the one good thing to come out of that ordeal. Instead, he’s being wasted on Evan Bourne, who was never going anywhere in this company and getting there pretty damn fast.

Cena vs Truth: Well, there was no USA chant, but they made sure to get John Cena a photo-op next to a National Guardsman. I guess Cena is the only superstar in the WWE who loves the USA. At least that’s what WWE would have me believe. Last week, I said that R-Truth should have done something after the match to make himself look good, given the push he’s currently receiving, since he & Punk were never going to win that tag team match. Tonight, I stand by my assessment. He’s not going to win a one-on-one match with John Cena cleanly. It’s never going to happen. And it didn’t. R-Truth wins via count-out. I’m guessing that in the WWE rulebook – that changes to fit the current situation – R-Truth now deserves a WWE Championship match. I would think that since you can’t win the title via count-out, you shouldn’t be able to get a title shot via count-out either. Whatever. The post match was the best part of this entire match. I loved how they made it a black guy that Cena came to the rescue of. Another “we’re not racist” statement from WWE. And the father looked like he was gonna cry when Cena was wiping the soda from his face. Seriously! Way to stand up for your little boy. No wonder R-Truth wants his son back! I wonder if his son’s name is Jimmy… By the way, if R-Truth doesn’t want people to say “What’s Up” anymore, maybe he should wear it on his pants. Seriously, how does no one catch these things?

QUOTE OF THE NIGHT: “The Miz was like a father to you… he thought of you like a brother.” – Micheal Cole
A father who is also a brother… it could happen. They were in Nebraska, after all. Come on, Cole, get it straight. The Brain would never make that mistake. Speaking of, they have to get Micheal Cole situated. If he’s going to be the loudmouth heel, then make him so. If he’s going to be the subdued announcer, then make it so. I know which one I hope for, but it’s confusing to see him go from one extreme to the other every night.


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