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RAW Recap (09/01/2017)

You wanted a proper Shield reunion, you got one. You wanted a title change on RAW, you got one. You wanted to see the Balor-Wyatt feud keep going… why? Anyway, welcome back to the RAW Recap and the good news for you is if you’re reading this, you don’t have to actually watch it.

The Mizzies pt.2

Photo Credit: wwe.com

A shock opening this week as The Miz presents another episode of MizTV, such innovation, so unique. Giving us the second part of the annual ‘Mizzies’ awards, The Miz would give an award to Curtis Axel who would shout out the injured Bo Dallas & Best Supporting Actor to Sheamus & Cesaro who would come out and thank Roman, Dean & Seth for being so much fun to beat up. The Miz would then taunt the crowd with the idea of this being a Shield reunion before declaring that the Miz-tourage and The Bar have done what Lesnar, Cena & ‘Taker couldn’t do and taken out Reigns. The Miz then gave himself a Mizzie for being the Big Dog but Reigns’ music would hit during the speech and out came Roman not selling any of the previous week’s beatdown. The Miz would taunt him with the numbers game & said that the rumours of a Shield reunion were just like Roman, all hype. ‘Rumours’ said Roman, ‘who said anything about rumours?’ Before Fleetwood Mac could even get the first note of Second Hand News out, Dean and Seth joined the fray, clearing house before hitting the Assisted Powerbomb on The Miz.

Some Things You Didn’t Need to See

  • Jason Jordan def. Karl Anderson in a match that’s mostly notable for Jordan going from singlet to tights to trunks. Who’s undressing Jordan?
  • Kurt Angle spoke to The Miz in medical and told him that he’s got the main event at TLC, a TLC match with him and The Bar facing a trio not yet calling themselves The Shield.
  • Elias def. Apollo Crews. The match was short, Titus interrupted Elias’ pre-match song, badly playing a banjo. When will this end?
  • Enzo Amore came out and whines about Kalisto getting a title shot at TLC so Kurt Angle instead makes the main event Kalisto’s title shot and to add to it, it’s a Lumberjack Match.

Braun Strowman vs Matt Hardy

Photo Credit: wwe.com

The match itself wasn’t much to discuss, Braun dominated, Matt Hardy attempted a comeback but Braun got the win. It does need to be said that Hardy was selling everything Braun had like he might die from it which we don’t know he isn’t. What’s definitely worth discussing is what happened after the match, Braun would carry Hardy’s defeated vessel up the ramp only to be confronted by The Shield, they are officially The Shield again, we know because they have The Shield merch on (did they have that pre-made or were they backstage with a pack of Fruit of the Looms and a laser etcher?). They would confront Braun who fought back until a beatdown by the Tag Team Champions and a Spear from Reigns took him down allowing them to hit the Assisted Powerbomb through the announce table. Afterwards in a backstage interview, they would declare The Shield to be back and Dean would say that together they are unstoppable, they could take on any 3, 4, 5 or 6 man team (but not one CM Punk it seems). This definitely won’t come back to haunt them. WHoever told the cameramen to zoom in and out constantly like they were cartoon characters who’d seen a beautiful woman were wrong, my head still hurts from all the zooming.

Mickie James Speaks

Photo Credit: wwe.com

Mickie came out to address that Alexa has been trying to undermine Mickie and that every time she feels threatened, she goes and hides behind Nia Jax. She tells Alexa that it’s time to get out of the high chair and put on her big girl pants. Alexa turns up and announces she wants to show the younger fans who may not know about Mickie James who she is. While I sat, terrified this was going to be another Alexa Bliss presents: This is Your Life, it turned out to be a career retrospective in the style of an old piece of newsreel footage complete with ol’ timey voiceover. Alexa thinks this is hilarous and makes more ‘Mickie James is old’ jokes because 38 is the new old, Mickie James responds by doing the ‘come and face me in the ring’ act and calls her a biscuit butt which the crowd love. Alexa Bails so James goes up the ramp and drags her into the ring, hitting a Mick Kick to stand tall. It’s been quite one-note so far from Alexa but the performances have been strong with Mickie really knowing how to sell a feud. If these two can deliver a match as good as their promos, we’re in for a treat.

Other Things You Didn’t Need to See

  • Sasha Banks, Bayley, Dana Brooke, Emma & Alicia Fooox all want the match with Asuka at TLC so Angle books them all in a six-way to determine who gets to face her. I don’t why they all want her, they aren’t ready for her, no one is. Alicia also continues her feud against the peaking level on microphones as she screams about not having merch.
  • Jack Gallagher & Brian Kendrick def. Cedric Alexander & Mustafa Ali. They sure did.
  • Earlier in the show, Dean Ambrose declared a reunited Shield could beat any 3,4,5 or 6 man team, so The Miz wants Braun to join him & The Bar for TLC. Angle agrees because reasons.
  • Finn Balor talks to Bray Wyatt and Bray dresses as Sister Abigail. Sister Abigail is worse than anything Finn Balor has read in his Irish Pathology books apparently. Stop it. Just stop it.

Elimination Match: Bayley vs. Dana Brooke vs. Sasha Banks vs. Alicia Fox vs. Emma

Photo Credit: wwe.com

I really don’t want to talk about this match. So we have six women fighting for the right to lose to Asuka yet Mickie James just gets a title shot because she wanted one? Also they really thought it was a great plan to have a 5 person elimination match that doesn’t even last ten minutes? How did they expect anyone to look good out of this? They didn’t even tell us (or Michael Cole) it was an elimination match in advance. First Bayley eliminates Dana Brooke sending her back to… wait, she isn’t on Main Event, what does Dana Brooke even do anymore? Banks and Bayley face off until Bayley is taken out with a Scissor Kick from Alicia Fooox, Banks then tapped out Fooox with a Banks Statement only to be rolled up by Emma. This was rushed, sloppy and generally unsatisfying. Only really the knowledge that Emma v Asuka was as good as it was back at NXT TakeOver: London manages to stop it being a complete failure.

Yet More Things You Didn’t Watch:

  • Finn Balor tries to convince himself that any of what he has to do isn’t wasting the best years of his life.
  • Next Week: Roman Reigns vs Braun Strowman in a Steel Cage match. Luckily for both men, steel cages keep out any outside intervention. Right?
  • Kalisto talks about how he does what he can because of his inspirations Rey Mysterio & Eddie Guerrero. Kalisto v Sasha Banks is booked for TLC in a ‘The Inspiration of Eddie on a Pole Match’.
  • The cruiserweights start jacking lumber or whatever it is they do these days.
  • Enzo Amore continues to try and bury the entire division he’s part of.

WWE Cruiserweight Title Lumberjack Match: Enzo Amore (c) vs Kalisto

Photo Credit: wwe.com

First the good things: we got a Lumberjack match which proves that WWE at least understand basic storytelling as what else could follow on from everyone attacking Enzo, Kalisto has his good music back and his classic mask (even if the same person who’s undressing Jason Jordan seems to be doing the same to him), Enzo Amore works a lot better as heel than face, the above pictured moment when Kalisto superplexed Amore to the outside onto the entire division (minus Neville) was great. The bad bits: any time Enzo was in control. Character-wise, the man is incredibly good, in-ring performance-wise, I’m pretty sure Ho Ho Lun could teach him a few things. What worked well about this match was that it focussed more on storytelling than actual wrestling which benefitted Enzo well, even if it left Kalisto feeling stranded at times as a man whose character is ‘Lucha’, especially when the big focus of the match seemed to actually be about disputes between Enzo and Mustafa Ali, the man who would be the Cruiserweight champion if there were any justice. After Enzo is about to heel his way into victory, Mustafa pulls him out of the ring, as Enzo tries to go back in and hit some off the top rope, Kalisto reverses it into a top rope Salida Del Sol for the pin. The further good news from all of this: now Enzo doesn’t have the title, the true King of the Cruiserweights can come back for his crown.