Tuesday, February 25, 2014

RAW Review: High Expectations

There was a lot to like about RAW, but I have to admit I kind of mentally checked out on the show at some point.  The truth is I believe my high expectations for the show were just too high.

The start of the show seemed promising as we were greeted by Real American and our WrestleMania XXX host, Hulk Hogan.  Decent promo from the Hulkster and all, but even by his standards there seemed to be an excess of "BROTHERS!"  Minor complaint however as it's great to see Hogan back in WWE.  They are meant to go together and it's good to have him home no matter my feelings about his WCW Hollywood Hogan run.

Now I've practically been crusading against a lot of the nitpicking analysis I see from the IWC.  Well I've already fallen into one with the Hogan/Brother deal, but I actually have another.  Did anyone else think it odd that they essentially used the same exact finish in the Cesaro/Big E and the Reigns/Wyatt matches?  I mean the two finishes could not have been more similar.  Anyhow, both were entertaining matches although some shoddy camera work hurt Reigns/Wyatt.  I really hated that they missed a good look at Reigns' swanky dropkick on the apron move.  The highlight of the match and of the night for me was Seth Rollins' awesome run-in.  The camera angle helped in that regard as well.  It was like BOOM...SETH ROLLINS!

It looks like we have some sort of endgame for Daniel Bryan vs The Authority.  I'm not as hot and heavy on Bryan as most are, but I think a match with Triple H will be a nice consolation prize if you're not going to get him involved with the belt.  I am not sure, however, how much longer you can have Bryan be oppressed by The Authority before that really loses steam.

The most interesting thing last night for me was the continued massaging of Batista.  The crowds still (irrationally in my mind) dump on the guy.  On Twitter (@S_ATL_Wrestling) last night I wondered aloud if they should just try to do a double-turn with Big Dave and Orton.  Orton chuckling at Batista was pretty funny because he looked legitimately tickled when he pointed out to him how much the fans hated him.  I don't see a way out other than just giving the WWE Universe a full-on heel Batista at this point because he says all the right things and the crowds still despise him.  The upcoming angle on Smackdown will be interesting, but a touch less so because they can sweeten the crowd response, etc. to help give us their desired outcome.

Last but certainly not least was the Taker/Lesnar main event segment.  Again I don't get as fired up about Taker's yearly reappearance as some.  To me The Streak is cheapened to a degree simply because Taker shows up for basically one month a year at this point.  Lesnar is one heck of an interesting opponent however and that segment last night was heated and that's a good thing.  One thing that legitimately slayed me last night was this Tweet from WWE Creative Humor (@WWECreative_ish):

That's funny right there.

It wasn't a bad show by any stretch, but for me it was a victim of my high expectations.  The Road to WrestleMania is certainly heating up and that is always exciting however.

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