The Best And Worst Of WWE Raw 11/21

By: 11.22.11

Best: CM Punk Vs. Dolph Ziggler For President

Somewhere near the middle of this match I got bombarded with tweets (Twitter) of “so I bet this match is going to be a Best tomorrow” and “this match is all the Bests” and “I know for certain that Ziggler headstand is going to be a Best”. Two things: you’re right on all counts, and I love that Best and Worst has become enough of a thing that people are pointing them out as they go. That’s the coolest thing, and probably the closest I’ll ever be associated to two of my favorites having a killer 15-minute back-and-forth champion-versus-champion match on Raw.

The match wasn’t perfect — the finish was a little wonky with the Rocker Dropper into a Go To Sleep not working out as planned and there were some unsure moments near the beginning — but it was literally everything I could want out of a WWE Raw television match in 2011. It did everything I gripe about. It gave us WWE’s interpretation of wrestling instead of WWE’s interpretation of bullsh*t. It made both guys look better … Punk looked great backing up his boasts and wrestling with heart, Ziggler looked like he should just hand Zack Ryder the United States Championship as a consolation and wrestle the important guys from here on out. The finish was clean. The crowd was into it. CM Punk broke out an attempted ankle tackle like he’s f**king Hollywood from GLOW. It had moments of hatred and moments of fun, and at one point Vickie Guerrero thought she could Stacy Keibler CM Punk by blowing him a kiss. How much better could this be?

Best: This Kid

WWE kid fan CM Punk

Is that Christopher Walken with him?

Worst: Michael Cole, Political Analyst

Cole: “Y’know, CM Punk came out here earlier tonight’n, called himself the Agent of Change … Agent of Change, how’d that work out for OBAMA?”

Uh, he got to be President? Cole’s read of the line had just enough pauses in it for us to hear Vince backstage going “CM PUNK CAME OUT HERE EARLIER TONIGHT AND, CAME OUT HERE EARLIER TONIGHT AND”. At least he left off the “dammit” at the end. Lawler managed a weak “come on” as if he didn’t spend a month daydreaming about what it’d be like if Obama talked to WWE Superstars and Booker got stuck in a LET ME TELL YOU SOMETHING loop where you could hear the functioning black man parts of his brain going ERROR, ERROR.

Whether I agree with you or not, “your political opinions” ranks behind “gravy bowl match” on my list of things I don’t want to hear about on my wrestling show.

Best: The Headstand Heard Round The World

Reposted liberally from page one,


I don’t know why he did it, but I’m happy he did. Maybe he thought they’d already crashed to break. “Show-off” characters in wrestling usually just don’t go for pins when they’re supposed to, they don’t break out headstands. He should bring a unicycle to the ring next week and see if he’s got time to ride it.

Best: The First Step Toward Being Interesting Is Doing Things

And like I mentioned before, “having good matches” is really all I expect from a wrestler, and Punk having great matches like this and the one at Survivor Series go a long, long way toward me forgiving him for sh*t like calling Del Rio amigo. I don’t know if his claims of making the WWE Championship interesting again or ending the “hot potato” title changes are legit, but if we start getting EVOLVE-quality storytelling and a title change every week and the matches are great I won’t complain. When people ask me what WWE or pro wrestling needs to do to improve, I’m always drawn back to an exchange from my third favorite Woody Allen movie Stardust Memories.

“But shouldn’t I stop making movies and do something that counts, like-like helping blind people or becoming a missionary or something?”

“Let me tell you, you’re not the missionary type. You’d never last. And incidentally, you’re also not Superman; you’re a comedian. You want to do mankind a real service? Tell funnier jokes.”

That’s it, really. You’re wrestlers. Just be good at wrestling.

Worst: Sell That #HEEL Hoodie, Dammit

I don’t want another situation like the sparkly David Otunga Nexus zip-up, guys, put the #HEEL hoodie on Shopzone so I can buy it and wear it while it’s cold. I will buy two and wear at least one of them every day. I don’t want the “I AM PERFECTION” shirt that looks like the Parks and Recreation throwback logo I can’t wear in public because it looks and sounds asinine, I don’t want a WWE basics with Ziggler on the front because I’m an adult and a shirtless, hairless muscle guy in bicycle shorts on my shirt isn’t the right kind of conversation piece. I want your plain black thing with the plain black letters. If you can make something like that for each individual Rock appearance, you can make this one and sell it to me from whatever 70-dollar ballpark you’re sewing.

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