Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Raw Review: Last One Before Payback (4-25-2016)

Aside from the Raw in-ring debut of Gallows and Anderson, there wasn't anything earth-shattering about this show.  That said it was a really solid episode of Raw.

As always I just look at that which interested me on the show.  I do not force myself to have opinions about segments that didn't catch my attention and I do not do recaps.  If you want that then I always like to look at Jason Powell's WWE Live TV Report on DOT NET.

Here are my thoughts on what moved me to one degree or another.  As always, feedback is welcomed.

  • Roman Reigns v Alberto Del Rio--Perfectly fine TV match that left you just waiting for the post-match angle.  It is kind of humorous to me that they didn't bother having Del Rio actually lose to WWE Champion Roman Reigns before the thing got thrown out. 

    The aforementioned post-match angle worked for me.  I liked every bit of it including Roman Reigns Superman Punching AJ Styles after he apparently helped him by trying to get Gallows & Anderson off of him.  To me that also punctuated the idea that they really don't care if you look at Roman as a face. 

    There's been this idea that the boos for Roman Reigns are still a problem.  I guess they are if those folks stop buying tickets, but ever since Mania the boos are really inconsequential in a storyline/character development sense. 

    Anyhow, I am definitely looking forward to Payback and that visual of AJ Styles hitting the Phenomenal Forearm was an excellent way to get us to the show.  That and the mystery surrounding how Gallows & Anderson may play a part in helping their "good brother."

  • AJ Styles v Sheamus--Excellent match  between two guys are really good in the ring.  I cannot say that Sheamus excites me a whole lot as a character, but dude can go in the ring and I took him for granted in that regard until he got his chance to shine opposite Roman Reigns.

    It was good to see AJ get a clean win in a hard-hitting match.  The announce team did a great job getting over the idea that Sheamus was a good comp for AJ to get prepared for the WWE World Champion at Payback. 

  • Gallows & Anderson v The Usos--I enjoyed the match, but I thought it went a bit long.  This was one of those situations where you needed to get Gallows & Anderson's brutality across in a more lopsided match.  Even if you want to have them attack before the bell or whatever, you did not need that match to be so competitive. 

  • Chris Jericho/Dean Ambrose face-off--Jericho's a tough one for me to get a grip on right now.  I go between thinking he's absolutely useless to kind of digging some of his heel work.  This one was a good night for him I think.  He's got an excellent foil in Ambrose as they are just built to clash with one another.

  • Big Tag Team Talking Segment--Enzo & Cass got a great reaction as did the New Day.  That was to be expected.  I was impressed to see The Vaudevillains hold their own there.  The face English made at something Enzo said was perfect.  It fit the character and situation perfectly. 

  • Sami Zayn v Rusev w/ Lana--Good win for Zayn, I hope they start getting behind Rusev more strongly.  Lana may have been the MVP here with the shoe tossing after "her man's" loss.

    They teased the KO attack pretty well because it initially looked to me like it was obvious he would attack.  The longer it took, the less I thought it would happen...until it did.  Looking forward to that match at the show and the hype video for their feud was excellent. 

  • Dolph Ziggler attacks Baron Corbin--Solid way to build toward a match that I hope ends with Baron "Banter" Corbin annihilating Ziggler. 

This was a really solid show I thought.  I was really surprised by the mixed reaction to it.  I put this one up there as one of those, "If you didn't like it then maybe you need to find something else to do on Monday night" shows.

Not saying you have to like it, but I am just not sure what else they can do to please you at this point.  To each their own, of course.  This one got a solid thumbs up from me.