Reviewing the Review – Monday Night Raw: September 7, 2015

Alas it’s a holiday show and that means they’re really not going to be putting in much effort. I get the idea behind it, but it gets really tiring watching them out there on a show that means nothing and clearly just filling in time before next week’s special episode where for some reason they try to fight off a Monday Night Football doubleheader instead of having a nothing show that night and then doing a major show after Night of Champions and starting the build from there. Then again, when has WWE ever done something that makes sense? Let’s get to it.

Rollins opened the show with his weekly address where he talks to the fans like they’ve never seen an episode of Raw before by recapping his entire title reign. I’m always of the mindset that each episode is someone’s first time watching, but recapping the fact that you beat Brock Lesnar really doesn’t mean anything when you’re fighting Sting and John Cena while Lesnar is nowhere in sight. It’s recapping for the sake of filling in time and for the sake of WWE thinking its fans are stupid which gets old fast.

This brought him to Sting and the statue, which needs to get destroyed already and be done with it. Sting had the statue with him in front of a dark background, which is certainly just a corner of the arena somewhere and not in front of something that will be a big surprise later on.

Sheamus came out as well to tease the Money in the Bank cash-in at Night of Champions because it’s the fall and therefore time to start teasing the cash-in like they do EVERY SINGLE YEAR BECAUSE THAT’S THE STORY THEY CAME UP WITH AND IT HAS TO BE THE SAME STUPID THING EVERY TIME SINCE WE JUST HAVE TO HAVE THAT STUPID BRIEFCASE FLOATING AROUND ALL THE FREAKING TIME! Just cash it in, let Sheamus lose or have a month long title reign and be done with it already so we can have a break before the whole thing starts over again in July.

After a break, Rollins came in to see Mama and Papa Helmsley, who have the whole thing covered because Seth can’t handle an old man without them. Of course no one ever says “hey, let’s go find the cameraman and ask him where he was. Like, there has to be a cable leading to his camera somewhere right?” That’s heresy in WWE though, because we need to praise HHH and Stephanie in their cameo while they’re not really in the arena because not even they watch Raw on Labor Day. Rollins gets two wrestle twice tonight because the Authority treats like like a child.

Paige and Sasha had their same decent match that ended with Naomi distracting Paige so Sasha could get a small package pin. I think this leads to a Paige heel turn, which could be interesting once we get done with the never ending team feuds.

Now we get to the part of the show that actually got on my nerves, which almost never happens: Ambrose and Reigns squashed the Ascension, who had been put together with Stardust in a group on Smackdown. However, since the people who put Raw together don’t seem to watch Smackdown, none of that mattered because Reigns and Ambrose needed opponents for a squash.

I have no problem with Ambrose and Reigns beating someone up, but if they’re trying to do something with Ascension, don’t put them out there to get squashed. You could put any two goofs out there and have them lose in three minutes. You have how many people who haven’t done anything important in months (Heath Slater, Curtis Axel, Damien Sandow, Adam Rose, Fandango etc) but why use any of them?

Instead you put out a team that needs to be rebuilt in the worst way after WWE screwed them up in the first place by having Booker and JBL treat them like idiots and then having the Outlaws and APA, two mostly retired teams, attack them for a nostalgia segment. I’ve said this many times before, but WWE has no idea how to use its roster. They focus on a handful of people and forget everyone else. Put up a big board of everyone on your roster and label it “PEOPLE WE CAN USE” or something, but stop wasting a team that could go somewhere for a spot that any two jobbers could use.

Oh and again, this is what NXT fans are always afraid of: why bother bringing people up if they’re going to be completely wasted for the sake of whatever stupid idea the main show has for them? What does that develop and how is it a good use of the system they have in place? It’s because the people who put together the main show can’t stop and pay attention for five seconds, because the match was less than three minutes long. Any two warm bodies could have done this job as well as Konor/Viktor, but that’s who we get and we’re just supposed to go with it on Smackdown when they’re featured again. Thank you WWE.

Ryback and Owens continue to stare at each other and their feud (is it even a feud yet? Don’t you have to do more than look at and insult each other to constitute a feud?) is still intriguing.

We get a long recap of Ziggler/Summer/Lana and it’s so cheesy that it’s getting awesome. Embrace the fact that it’s a soap opera and it’s a lot easier to bear.

Ryback beat Rollins in the first long match of the night. I still really like Ryback at the moment and it’s cool to see him get a big win, even if it was due to a Sting distraction. They’re building a good Intercontinental Champion with Ryback, and above all else there’s one key: he’s treating the title like it matters. Couple that with actually defending the thing and he’s one of the better champions in a long time.

Rollins (who I’m sick of from this show alone) runs into New Day, who he’s teaming with later. The Dudleyz come in, as do Edge and Christian for a cameo. This turns into the trombone vs. the kazoo, which are both totally awesome. This was great.

Summer Rae/Rusev/Ziggler did some stuff, with only Summer referring to Rusev as Ru Ru being noteworthy.

Orton, Sheamus, RKO, sixteen minutes. I need to get away from this match before I nod off.

The Wyatts beat up Orton for hanging out with Reigns/Ambrose earlier. I like this idea the more I think about it and they’re setting the stage for an outsider to be there to save the Shield boys.

The Dudleyz squashed Los Matadores so they could turn on El Torito. Didn’t they do this before and nothing came of it?

Big Show caused Miz vs. Cesaro to go to a double countout. I guess they’re just swapping Cesaro for Ryback in this feud? That’s their best idea?

The Bellas and PCB had your standard build to next week’s title match where Nikki tapped to the Figure Eight.

John Cena, with the Prime Time Players, beat New Day. This was nothing special and was really just there to fill in some time.

Sting threw the statue into a garbage truck to end the show. He did a little dance around it, which was actually cool because I’ve always loved how Sting moves. It’s different enough from everyone else to make it look cool.

This show wasn’t the worst they’ve ever done but there was a distinct lack of energy to the show all night. The only major thing was the destruction of the statue, which we’ve been waiting weeks for now. It was clear that they were trying to fill in time though, which has to happen every week but it’s a lot harder to sit through when they’re being so blatant with it. The “season premiere” next week should be better, but a bit of energy is all it would take.

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