The Redman Report: WWE Raw 2/4/12: HERE COMES THE PAIN
Posted on April 4th, 2012 by Jimmy Redman
So, that happened. This show was so monumental on so many levels that I had to do this straight away. So much…happened.
And we kick off with a campy WWE backstage staff meeting. I cant help but get a kick out of these, when they have all the wrestlers sitting there next to each other like good kiddies. In a good way. As great as Ace is, heel GM shenanigans are so past their use by date that I’m not looking forward to a whole heap of this going forward. Both matches made sound cool though, especially Punk/Henry.
Wow, that was seriously like Rock’s best promo since before WM27. He made his points, he was genuinely happy and excited of course, there was no superfluous rubbish or nervous stumbling. Just a great promo. Plus, dropping in the WWE Title there is great as it gives direction for him long-term.
The US Title three-way was tremendously entertaining. For the most part in a kind of sad way, because I spent most of this match imagining how great it would have been had they made a decision last year to team Dolph and Swag up properly as a tag team and have them go nuts showing off as Team Vickie. See folks, fantasy booking will just make you miserable. Anyway, this was a fun match, the heels beating on Santino until they inevitably fall out and turn on each other, and Santino making his comeback and getting the win. And also busting out cool as hell stuff like the BACKDROP-OOH DRIVAHHH! That was great. I’m glad they are keeping on with Santino, the guy is great.
OK, Santino f*cking Marella escaping a heel beatdown by pointing at nothing and then power walking to safety was INCREDIBLE. And then BRODUS! Brodus was a total badass making this save, and HOLY JESUS HE LAUNCHED DOLPH INTO THE ATMOSPHERE. That is a motherf*cking CRIMINALLY INSANE BUMP to be taking on the ramp. Dolph needs to enjoy his career while it lasts. And then dancing! Literally everything about this ruled, and this was the best opening half hour of TV in forever.
LORD TENSAI! Bernard coming into WWE and just murdering bitches is awesome already. Sucks to be Alex Riley, Tensai MAULED this poor f*cker. The elbows in the corner, the headbutts, SQUISHING him on the senton, he looked murderous and, not to sleep on it, Riley sold like a motherf*cker. Also dug the evil Japanese misting on the claw. Tensai is going to be so much God damn fun.
HOLY F*CKING SH*T, PUNK VS HENRY! What an incredible match. I enjoyed every second and somehow as it went on it just got greater and greater by the minute, to where I was just in awe of it by the end. Awesome sh*t. Mark Henry was THE GREATEST BEAST OF ALL TIME here. An immense man. His sh*t talking was the greatest thing I’ve ever seen in my life here, it was awesome. Not to mention him beating the Jesus f*ck out of Punk and his utter disdain as to whether Punk lived or died. This was such a Greatest Man in the World performance that he’s shot clear of the field by a significant margin. Of course, Punk was great too. He sold fantastically well, in particular, and honestly this was the best Punk performance in the ring in a long, long time. Probably since the Cena matches.
To me the most poignant moment of the entire match was the finish. Punk had taken such a monumental beating for so long, been cut off so powerfully so many times, that when Henry cut him off one more time and threw him to the floor…that was the finish. WWE Champion Punk lost to being tossed to the floor, and it was completely believable and acceptable. The great thing about Henry is that he’s such an effective monster that he is able to work countout finishes that can be bought as legit in 2012. Also loved Henry being punch drunk and not realising until too late that he let the guy get counted out and missed his chance.
And then alcohol! After that match I literally groaned when I heard Jericho, I didnt want Punk to fight anyone else but Henry until the end of time, but the segment was so awesome they got me right back into their feud. The alcohol pouring and then glassing him with the bottle, Jesus. WWE is ROH. This was a great, heavy angle to lend some more seriousness to their feud and keep it going for now a weapons match. Great stuff. What an hour of television.
Sheamus out for the lulz. Having Alberto interrupt him straight away was genius as far as not giving the crowd time to turn on Sheamus. And it was actually nice to see Alberto and Ricardo again, even though he froze up a little when confronted with the crowd. Inserting Alberto into the World Title picture is hilarious just for the reaction, but could also work out well if it gives them a body for both Sheamus and Bryan to kind of be babyfaces against in the immediate future. I also thought the bit where the mic “cut out” and then Sheamus took his chance to Brogue Kick the f*ck out of him, that was pretty damn cool.
I suppose this is a good a time as any to talk about the crowd. This crowd was AWESOME and the most heated TV taping in forever. Most of all I loved the creativity with “YES!” turning into “NO!” when Henry was on offense against Punk, and then “SI!” when Alberto was in there. And I mean, while they were definitely amusing themselves, for the most part they still paid attention to the show and were super into things like Brodus’ save and Henry/Punk and made them come across twice as great. Just one of those unique crowds that you wish you could bottle.
It makes me sad that Kofi’s Double Pump Crossbody is like his opening move now, I was so into it when he built it into a finisher on Smackdown. The good old days. Anyway, this was fine enough until the Big Show! And he gets wacky humiliating video revenge on Cody to close the circle. Then they can have a Humiliation on a Pole match at the PPV. I swear to God, the only use they seem to have for Kofi is to be the guy who stands in wait while the other guy is distracted by the Tron/person on the stage and turns around into TIP.
As much as using Abraham Washington as a manager is years overdue, I dont particularly see the point in putting him with Henry, since Henry is absolutely fine on his own and has no trouble in the talking department, which is really the point of a manager. But whatever.
Eve, I love you honey, but you need to work on the promos. Not the delivery so much as her acting and performance. She looked like she was reciting off a teleprompter in a vacuum. Needed more Eve Laughing. She also needs the Divas Title pronto.
Miz looks like he’s been reborn. That was quite the rejuvenation just off getting the Mania clusterf*ck win. The main thing about Zack for me is that he needs his ‘Jericho trashes Trish on the Highlight Reel’ moment. Its OK if it wasnt this week, but it would need to be sometime soon. If they’re done with each other he needs a moment to say “F*ck that whore for playing me, she’s a whore anyway” and be able to move on from it. Not responding doesnt work in this situation. Also, he did look good in the match and he still has a future as a midcarder. Anyway, could not even hate this match. This show can do no wrong.
Loved the build all show for Cena to come out and to get his reaction to failure. Which kind of made it even greater when he came out as the exact same Cena and flat out told people to their faces that he was going to be the exact same Cena and isnt going to “turn heel” just because people who dislike him want him to. There sure is something to ponder in the layers of meta wrapped up in the idea of a hated babyface who gets over as a heel by refusing to be a heel. I think it could have worked better as a promo (epsecially to a completely hostile crowd) if he had come out considering the gravity of the loss and flirting with the idea of it affecting him before he made a comeback and declared that he was still the same Cena after all. It would have been HATED, of course, but it was going to be regardless and the promo was just kind of aimless, if anything.
But whatever, honestly, because all this promo was about was
Its never the same when you know its coming (f*ck spoilers, seriously) but still, what an amazing moment. BROCK IS BACK. People go NUTS, he still looks like a beast, Cena is markin’ out bro and smirking like a douche so he gets F5ED MOTHERF*CKER. Kicking the hat was hilarious. What an awesome shot in the arm for the post-Mania season. Anyone who came in for Rock and could have been content with watching Rock’s return and him beating Cena, just when they think “I dont really need to keep watching now, I’m done”, here comes BROCK LESNAR TO F*CK UP JOHN CENA. I think its a great way to keep interest alive in that audience that they’ve gained, as well as obviously a great way to make shedloads of money and a great way to have BROCK LESNAR WRESTLING ON TV. Cant wait to see where it leads and how soon he wrestles. As a post- show this was a colossal success on pretty much every single front. I love wrestling.