Hit - The Cutting Edge
Always great to see Edge and his much missed theme song, and last night he took part in a very good Cutting Edge segment. What made this one of the better segments surrounding the main storyline is the addressing of Bryan's current behaviour regarding all the attacks he's had to be on the hand of. I've been wondering for weeks why Bryan has been so reluctant to seek revenge after all those RKOs and Triple Powerbombs, and that reason is that he's biding his time until Night of Champions. It was the best excuse we could have hoped for really, so there's really no complaints on me from me on that front.
As well as that, we got to see some nice jabs between Triple H and Edge. While I don't like to bring it up, there was a lot to this that was very non-PG, and for me made that a lot better. You don't mistakenly let an "asshole" chant ring around the arena like Triple H did, or just straight up call him a "dick" like Edge did. It was a strong segment that showed the retired guy speak his mind, knowing there was no repercussions. Well, apart from Christian getting attacked. That was kind of his fault.
Miss - Heyman Starts to Get Worried That Man Who Doesn't Win Often Might Not Win On Sunday
Shocker, right? The guy who by now must have a pretty shitty win/loss record, lost again to Kofi last night, much to the dismay of Paul Heyman. Of course, he lost by DQ, after constantly kneeing Kofi in the head, but so what? It really didn't make him look that tough.
And listen, the idea of Axel getting some shock losses just a week before his match at Night of Champions is actually good... but only if he didn't lose so often beforehand. He's been built up so weakly that we all already know that Punk is going to beat him easily. It's unintentionally being booked as a no contest.
Hit - Heyman's Medical Examination
Another story revolving around Paulie Heyman, but one that actually worked this time. The absolute desperation he showed in trying to get out of the match was pretty fun to watch, as was him being caught out by and actual doctor, who declared him fully fit. But, the best bit came when CM Punk arrived, leading to Heyman scampering over the barricade without any signs of an injury. If ever an episode of Raw showed that Axel is very much in the background of this feud (or rather in another room with the lights turned off) then this is it.
Hit - AJ Calls it Like it Is
Words cannot describe how much I enjoyed AJ ripping into Jerry Lawler. Bringing up the fact that he's a borderline pedophile, as well as calling out his lack of knowledge on Raw main events that AJ's been in was just fun to watch. And Lawler reserved it as well. He rather creepily asked her if she had anymore tattoos beyond those on the back of her neck, and also jokingly asked her when she main evented a Raw. He was being a disrespectful dick, and deserved what he got. The same goes for JBL, who was just as bad as Lawler with his obnoxious laughing. At least when Cole showed his lack of interest in something it was because he was a heel, but last night JBL and Jerry Lawler showed their genuine disinterest in the Divas division. So good on AJ for standing up for them.
Hit - Santino Marella vs. Antonio Cesaro
It's funny what a long break can do for a character. Before Santino Marella left some time last year I, as well as a lot of people I'm sure, felt that his gotten beyond stale. Last night though, it all felt fresh again. Maybe it was because of the hot Toronto crowd, or because he was against someone like Cesaro, but his match last night was just pure fun. His character will probably grow stale again, but at least the long break has brought some life back to it for a while.
Hit - Goldust vs. Randy Orton
Remind me again why Goldust isn't on the main roster. I remember he got injured when things started to go good for him again, and then he just didn't come back. While the Toronto crowd and story behind the match helped how the match went on, it's still fair to say that he can still go in the ring.
Last night he put on a really solid match against Randy Orton which was filled with some nice nearfalls and just an all round big match atmosphere. I've really liked the story regarding Cody Rhodes, Goldust was able to keep it really interesting with a fine performance against the WWE champion.
Hit & Miss - Bryan Stands Tall
There was a lot to like about the last half hour of Raw. We got a decent bout between Bryan and Ambrose which saw Bryan clean out all of The Shield single handily before rolling up Ambrose for the win. The usual beatdown was also fine as well, because I always knew that something else was going to happen since it was the go-home show before Night of Champions.
The worst thing for me was the large focus on Big Show once again. I think they've already established that Big Show isn't happy with how things are going on with Triple H, and they established that weeks ago. This constant involvement regarding Big Show has taken too much away from Bryan's underdog story, and while the show ended with Bryan standing over Randy Orton, I still feel that the spotlight hasn't been put on Bryan enough.
Will all this Big Show angst lead to a heel turn at Night of Champions. Probably. He turned heel under similar enough circumstances last year and while I wouldn't like to see it, there's a lot of signs pointing towards Big Show laying out Bryan. I hope that doesn't happen. I hope that all this is leading to something else, because for me they've gone too far to go in that kind of direction.
- I'm guessing Ziggler is still being punished for some words he said about Orton a few weeks ago. It's hard to say though, he doesn't seem to lose meaningless matches a lot.
- Fandango has to be the most un-heelish heel ever. I mean, he interrupted a Miz match, who could honestly boo him for that?
- I really liked the Goldust vignettes throughout the show. The amount of 90's Goldust shown was pretty surprising.
- Has everyone made a joke about Big Show smashing the very large TV? Yeah? OK then.