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The Best And Worst Of WWE Raw 5/7/12: All Hail Our New Robot Overlord

By 05.08.12

Worst: John Cena Dresses Like That At Home Too, I Guess

Okay, so the joke here is that Cena dresses in his one pair of jorts and his biannual gifting of one (1) t-shirt, four (4) wristbands, one (1) headband to be used as an armband and infinite (∞) hats, but I’m willing to believe that a via satellite interview constitutes a work function so Cena would put on his “work clothes” for it. I wish he’d worn his I BRING IT VIA SATELLITE shirt, though.

What I hated about this is how quickly Cena shifted from “my arm is a Gushers fruit snack now” to the same shouty assertion that he will FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT he always does, and how his threats and tone of voice for an upcoming novelty match against a 46-year old suit who hasn’t wrestled in 12 years is the exact same as the ones he used for Brock Lesnar. It continues that weird idea that he beat Brock Lesnar to built to a match with John Laurinaitis, and no piece of the wrestling fan section of my brain can understand it. Cena should’ve just taken the week off. Better yet, Rock should’ve randomly shown up, been all “so hey where’s John Cena, I thought he was here every week” and then launch into a “boo hoo you got beat up by John Laurinaitis and CHICKITY CHINA THE CHINESE CHICKEN” or whatever on the one show Cena medically couldn’t make.

Oh man, how awesome would a Rock versus Lord Tensai feud be? Dude would CHING CHONG so hard he’d break his jaw.

Best: John Cena’s Dream Ride


Best: #Maxine

I love a lot of under-the-radar wrestlers on the WWE roster, and these post-WrestleMania months always make me nervous because there’s no guarantee they aren’t going to say “welp”, slice NXT in half with a sword and send all the people I like to Jersey All Pro or Wizard World or wherever.

Over the last week I’ve seen Derrick Bateman show up on Smackdown only to get beaten worse than I beat him at Scramble With Friends by Ryback, and Maxine show up on Raw only to get flicked in the boob (I’m paraphrasing) and neckbroken by Layla. The upside is that they’re being paid to do what they love on television. The downside is that every squash match feels like a preemptive farewell.

Of course, that’s the wrestling fan in me over-exaggerating. Bateman being mauled by Ryback is no worse than Ziggler being mauled by the Funksasaurus and I’m not worried about Ziggler being sacked, I just want them to do well and stick around long enough to do so. It took Aaron Stevens 10 years of development to show up with a character more dynamic than “the brown haired guy in Michelle McCool’s sexual discipline tag team”, so who knows?

Worst: Kelly Kelly And Layla As Hand Holdin’ BFsF

One of my least favorite things about wrestling (and the reason I made “pay attention to continuity” the first step toward improving it) is how when heel and face dynamics shift, all past rivalries and situations are instantly forgotten. Sometimes WWE wants to do a tag team match with Randy Orton and CM Punk on the same side and doesn’t give a sh*t about that time Punk trapped Orton’s wife on some bus steps and fingered her with his mind.

This happens more (and more obliviously) in the Divas division, where Eve can slap Zack Ryder or whatever and Kelly Kelly instantly thinks she’s “always been a hoeski”. Alicia Fox teams up with Natalya one week and hates Each And Every One Of You, then gets paired with Kelly the next week and is just laughin’ and pointin’ and pinning Natalya in 40 seconds with no explanation. They don’t care about who the women are or anything they do.

Case in point: Kelly Kelly holding hands with Layla and bein’ her best gal pal last night. Let me take you back two years:

“Smelly Kelly” is one of my favorite LayCool nicknames because of how explicitly sexual it is, but subtle enough to pass as a schoolyard insult. Sure, when they’re standing next to Kelly Kelly and saying something smells like rotten eggs and garbage they’re talking about something OTHER than her vagina.

Anyway, Layla never really had a face turn. LayCool were the worst of heels and got mad at each other, then injured each other in their blowoff match. McCool retired and Layla was hurt for a year. She came back with Michelle’s heel music and never got any exposition about changing her ways or mending fences with the Divas, but she was pointing and smiling so that meant “good guy” and now Kelly loves her. Of the two possible explanations:

1. It’s the same lazy boring writing we always get and is nothing to get upset about, because who cares

2. Kelly Kelly is an idiot with no memory

… I’m going with number two.

Best: How Inappropriate Layla’s Music Is

She pins Maxine and a bunch of unseen women yell YAH NOT ENOUGH FOR MAYYY, JUST ANOTHER MAN IN LOVE WITH MAYYY. Diva themes should be about the woman’s relationship with other women, not with the hypothetical men who’d wish to sleep with them. Or, I don’t know, Randy Orton’s theme should have a line in it about how if you’re hot he’s probably down for f**king you, just find a road agent and wait for him out back.

Best: The BLOCKBUSTER TAG TEAM MATCH Finishing Sequence

Match placement is important, and almost ignored entirely. Sure, at big shows they usually sandwich a Playboy Pillow Fight or something between the Undertaker match and the World Title thing, but the worst is when a Raw starts off with an hour and 20 minutes of promos and commercials and Dorito’s Locos Tacos Presents The Lowered Expectations Food Combo Of The Night and a bunch of 40 second bullsh*t affairs and then gives you a 10 minute Teddy Long tag team special 40 minutes before close as an apology.

WWE, I like these matches most of the time, especially the ones with finishing sequences as well put-together as this one, but you’ve GOT to pace this better. By the time this match started I was drifting off into whatever local task I could find, doing laundry, approving pending comments, drawing Abdullah the Butcher in Draw Something, whatever. It was the best match on the show by far and I was barely interested because you’d beaten me down with apathy.

But yeah, that finish was pretty great. I like the continued booking of Sheamus as a guy who keeps winning for the enjoyment of almost nobody. I love how people kinda cheer for him when he’s doing his thing, then cheer TREMENDOUSLY when the other guys they like more beat him up. If he can keep this going and get into Rocky Maivia “Die Sheamus Die” territory he could get a money heel turn out of it. He’s already there with me!

Hilarious Best: Fight Noises In John Laurinaitis’ Office

Oh God, I love wrestler punching noises. MMA would be so much better if Anderson Silva went HUF! HUF! HUF! HUF! HUF! every time he threw punches.

The fight scene in Big Johnny’s office was great because you had four guys throwing punches, so that meant four guys doing a Mario Paint sounding medley of grunts with their punch noises. It was the most “we’re wrestling on the bed I’m John Cena who do you wanna be” thing ever. They could’ve stop-motion animated the scene with wrestling buddies and we wouldn’t have noticed.

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