Wednesday, March 14, 2012

WWE Raw Review and Thoughts for March 12


I seem to be having a history with recent Raws where the ones that look the worst (Muppet episode and Triple H coming back) tend to be really good episodes.  Monday's episode threatened us with John Cena rapping and The Rock "rocking" and despite that the episode turned out to be really solid.  Not great, but solid.  I'll take solid.

John Cena v The Rock 
This feud has long run its course.  John Cena is the best now, whatever that means, and he wants to wrestle the best of all time.  Since Dusty Rhodes is busy running FCW and showing up for Worldwide Juggalo Wrestling he had to go with The Rock.

This feud is really the simplest feud ever.  John Cena wants to beat The Rock so he can legitimize his career, and The Rock wants to beat John Cena because The Rock is a prideful guy who wants the WWE Universe (ugh) to know that he can take a break from making crappy movies (Fast Five excluded) to come back and wreck the current WWE roster.  This isn't The Wire.  We don't need a year build up to when two animals fight for dominance, but we're getting it anyway.
Needs more talking.
Since this feud is so simple and they want to postpone the actual 'rassling until Wrestlemania they have to do something.  That something has been having Cena and Rock talk about how the other is a homosexual.

I don't want to get too political here, that'll be for Friday, but this is just like the Republican Primary: it's taking way too long to resolve and all it does is make everyone hate the people involved.  Having these two guys explain how the other has lady parts, is stupid, have prostitutes for mothers, and otherwise destroy one another went from being mildly funny to obnoxious.  At this point I'm siding with John Cena because he's able to talk his trash in 5 minutes and leave.  The Rock takes a half hour and stumbles over his lines.
This was cool 10 years ago.  It sucked on Monday.
People see what they want to see in The Rock.  Fans see him stumbling over lines and appearing vulnerable as a sign of his trying to appear flawed so that Cena can have some support going into Wrestlemania.  People who dislike The Rock see this as proof that he's lost whatever it was that he had 10 years ago.  I'm sympathetic to the view that he bumbles because he wants to give Cena a chance to be the "cool guy" and have a chance at parity in support at Wrestlemania.  Ultimately, I think that The Rock is out of practice and is likely adhering to a more detailed script that robs him of his natural charisma.

Ultimately, these two guys just need to wrestle and get it over with.  This feud has went nowhere since day one and has taken a year to get there.  All this feud has done is make me wish for the days when The Rock came on "Via Satellite" and John Cena was getting angry at Kane because of hate or something.


Miscellaneous Stuff I Liked
A little goes a long way.  Giving us David Otunga's sweater vests, bow ties, and matching coffee thermosi has been constantly hilarious and required zero effort.  Whenever Teddy Long would crack wise about how Otunga is a lawyer and something-something-that's-bad it wasn't funny and took some effort.  I'm glad to see they put a little bit of effort into something hilarious.  Good job, WWE.

I listened to Dolph Ziggler's interview with Colt Cabana last week (and you should, too) and Dolph Ziggler made a great point: that no matter what gimmick or amount of air time he is given he's going to try to do something memorable.  I think that ethic has really started to spread amongst the rest of the roster.

Swagger's hair is amazing:

Cody Rhodes is able to burn Big Show more in 2 minutes than The Rock (THE FUCKING ROCK) can do in 20:

And everyone else is just doing something really great stuff.

My modern, non-nostalgic, love of wrestling comes down to a simple formula:

Basically, make me care about these wrestlers, then let me see these wrestlers and, if possible, let them wrestle.  That's all you have to do.  TNA does the second and third parts really well, and it's getting better at the first now that Bully Ray has amazing calves, so I don't understand why the WWE is having such a hard time of it.

If a wrestler, and those should be 99% of the non-Laurinaitis people on a show, is doing something that doesn't involve grappling and superplexes there 1) better be a good reason for it, 2) not take forever to do, and 3) be awesome.

The current roster is amazing.  Let them go out and do their thing.  Brodus Clay will make me laugh and cheer.  Cody Rhodes will make me happy.  Dolph Ziggler will entertain.  These guys are talented and young and will deliver if you give them a chance.

There's zero reason to spend so much time on "Inappropriate Ponytail Theatre" (Thanks DanY) when you have guys like Daniel Bryan and CM Punk who just want to wrestle.

I originally intended to do a blow-by-blow review of the show but doing so would just reiterate what I said above.  When wrestling happened, it was great.  When wrestling happened but instead we got something funny, as with David Otunga and the white guy from Psych, it was funny and went by fast.  The show was terrible when lots of talking happened.  When Jericho talked about how he was going to make CM Punk drink because his father was an alcoholic it was weird but funny.  When the Funkasaurus was on it was euphoric.

I got nothing else.

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