What up wrestling fans, I'm the WrestlingNerd bringing you another written review. Today we take a look at WWE Raw 6/17/13. With Payback out of the way, how does WWE start the build towards Money in the Bank? Let's find out and start the review.
It's my destiny to hate the audience
We open up the show with Mr. Del Rrrrriiiiio. Alberto claims to be the Mexican Superman, but he's also pissed off. Apparently, it's okay for Dolph to cash in the MITB while he was banged up, but it was crossing the line when he took advantage of Ziggles head issues. You know, he totally has a point there. He does what the audience wanted him to do, but it was never enough. I just want to be loved, dammit! Love me!!! Anyway, Del Rio pretty much says 'f*** off' to the audience as he's gonna do whatever it takes to be successful. It makes you wonder what Zeb Colter would think about a foreigner hating the WWE Univ--WAIT A MINUTE!!! CM Punk decides to interrupt Del Rio's character transition so he can continue to show his change of persona. Damn, there sure are a lot of face/heel turns happening this month, don't you think? It's like the show got thrown in a washer machine and everything went bats*** insane. Punk wants a match with Del Rio tonight, while Paul Heyman doesn't seem keen on that idea since it wouldn't be a title match. Oh no, it appears there's trouble in paradise. Vickie Guerrero decides to make the match official. Definitely an interesting way to start off the show. As I projected after Payback, Del Rio has become an asshole while Punk (Who's turned face in the process) is wanting a match and sticking up for the victim, Dolph Ziggler. As you could imagine, this upsets Pauly. In fact, Punk tells Pauly that he's not his client anymore and wants to fly solo, but will always be a Paul Heyman guy….
I'm sure this won't come back to haunt Punk later in the evening…None whatsoever.
Christian returns & Pale force
Wow, two Vickie Guerrero appearances in less than 30 minutes? What, is it her birthday or something? I guess people were complaining that there wasn't enough shriek bats on this show. It turns out that Christian has made his return after all those months off. He wins in a short match against Wade Barrett. Yeah, so when does Wade start thinking of a career change? Hey, maybe bare-knuckle fighting wasn't so bad? It's great to see Christian return. I always look forward to his work…..
I love how King was shocked to see Rhodes Scholars defeat Sheamus. Still, you think this would've turned out different if Sheamus started waving a hand in front of his face, but I digress. I feel like something's missing…..oh I know, DOWNLOAD THE APP! DOWNLOAD THE APP! DOWNLOAD THE APP! You're a pussy if you don't have the WWE App surgically attached to your ass!
In the ever-continuing adventures of the McMahons, Triple H calls out Vickie for running the show….Even though she barely makes any decisions and it pretty much comes down to Vince and crew. Trips ordered Vickie to make an example out of the Shield since Trips feels they've been out of control. Or he could--Oh, I don't know, FIRE THEM!!! Oh, but we gotta remember that pesky wrestling logic. Never forget that. I might as well get these scenes in one shot so it will be easier to talk about. Vickie was about to cry in a corner and go in the fetal position until Vince arrives and claims the Shield is doing an awesome job. So, Vince approves of the renegades senselessly beating up his talents? Sure, why the hell not. I'll buy it at this point. Much later in the evening, we get a scene where Vickie isn't sure which McMahon to listen to. Vince claims she's doing a great job, Steph thinks she can't control things and Trips isn't happy that Vickie didn't do anything to the Shield. What it boils down to is the McMahons and Trips having their own agendas and not caring what the other thinks. I do have to wonder where this whole thing is going, so I gotta give them credit for keeping me invested in this whole thing.
Bryan vs Orton
UPDATE: This review was written before I heard about Bryan getting a real injury from this match. I guess this wasn't acting at all and it was genuine. I bring this up in case somebody mentions it. I'm aware of it, but didn't want to make any changes to the review since I don't like to make much from the dirt sheets.
Kane wants to work out his relationship issues with Daniel Bryan, but Bryan appears to be acting like a douche bag. They didn't say Team Hell No was over since they left it in the air, but it appears they will be taking a leave of absence. I gotta give them credit. At least they didn't resort to the cliche of having the broken-up tag team fight each other to end things. Something tells me years from now, we'll get to witness Team Hell No once again. I look forward to what both guys can do as individuals, but it definitely seems that DB has the edge over Kane right now. Daniel had a match against Randy tonight. It was a good match to watch while continuing to progress Bryan's storyline. Bryan played up an injury storyline. It was played up to the point where the officials called off the match due to Bryan's health. Randy is awarded the victory, but Randy does show some respect for Bryan not wanting to give up. So, if Cena never gives up, he always wins, but when anybody else tries it, it doesn't work. You can't troll me!!! Joking aside, this isn't a bad way of writing things. I think by having him take baby-steps towards those bigger victories, it's a better way of him being booked. I would say if Bryan gets the MITB briefcase and/or the WWE title, I would say that's the ultimate payoff. I think people forget that you have to build up these things and not show everything off in one night. Just my honest two cents on the whole thing.
An interesting diva segment?
Yeah, it's great to see that AJ isn't completely thinking about herself instead of her kayfabe boyfriend. Oh, you're so gonna get dumped by Ziggles before you know it. It figures as much since it's about that time for AJ to leach onto another 2-3 guys in that time. I think Big E is still holding out hope that he's one of those choices, but only time will tell. AJ gloats about how she can manipulate anybody in order to get what she wants. Stephanie McMahon interrupts the segment to….well, to pretty much out-bitch AJ. That's pretty much what it was. Still, it was those few moments that made the Divas Championship something, which is more than what I can say for the last couple of years. Kaitlyn comes out to attempt acting and WOW was this bad. You manipulated meeeeeee…..squeak. In fact, I honesty think she was aware of it because she managed to get a nip slip in there. It's like she was saying 'I apologize for my acting. Here's my nipple….I hope you enjoyed it'. That's some family friendly entertainment….wait, what! By the way, I know the wardrobe malfunction wasn't intentional. Learn to have a sense of humor.
Weeee the hypocrites
Zeb Colter claims he hates all foreigners, so he's gonna align himself with a foreigner to beat up other foreigners….what? I agree with Michael Cole on this one. Did I just say that? It of course makes absolutely no sense, but I actually don't mind this pairing. Antonio Cesaro hasn't been doing anything for a while and maybe something like this could help him out. Zeb did state that him and Jack Swagger are currently working on this. I wonder how that meeting went….
Zeb: We need Antonio Cesaro!
Swagger: Weeeee the people!!!
Zeb……Yes, I realize that, but Antonio would be a good ally.
Swagger: Weeeee the people!!!
Zeb: I got it the first time, Jack. Anyway, what do you think of Mr. Cesaro?
Swagger: Weeeee the people!!!
Zeb: You know what? F*** it! Good luck with your court date.
Swagger: Weeeee the people……I'm lonely….
Yes, this pairing doesn't make any sense, but I enjoyed this scene for what it was worth. I look forward to seeing what Antonio can do with this group, and I'll admit that even Cole's over-the-top reactions were pretty funny. Antonio takes out WILLIAM REGAL! It's f***in' Regal!
Mark Henry's Oscar
John Cena comes out to talk about Payback and how there will never be an opportunity for the MITB holder to cash in the MITB contract on him since he'll always be ready. You know, except for that one time where he wasn't ready and lost the title. The next person to holds it, earns it? Am I the only one that thought that was an innuendo? Yeah, so it's basically Cena putting the MITB competitors on notice and there's nothing wrong with that. One of the things hyped up all night was Mark Henry retiring from pro wrestling. WWE went overboard with hyping up his retirement, but I can understand why. Based on that, I think you had to suspect something was fishy about all of this…..Well, at least a tad. And another alarm had to go off in your head when he just so happen to make his retirement speech while Cena was out there talking. I think you had to sense that something was up. Now to Henry's credit, he really went out there and made it seem like he was retiring. Look at the body language? The tears? The heartfelt speeches? Henry really made people buy into the kool-aid that he was retiring. It was so well done that I started to think this was legit. Sure enough, he pulled one over on everybody by hitting Cena with the World's Strongest Slam…..
Henry obviously used this angle as a means of sending Cena a message, but damn was that a good performance. Give that man an Oscar. In fact, I'll do it for you….
I finally found somebody on this show that can make crying look legit. The entire diva roster should take crying lessons from Mark Henry. Bravo Mr. Henry, bravo!
Oh yeah, I almost forgot….
Curtis Axel squashed Super Sentai Cara in a matter of minutes. I really wonder how Mexico feels about Sin's place in the company. I'm actually being serious here. If you're from Mexico, how do you feel about Sin Cara's spot in the WWE? Miz was on commentary for this match, so I guess we have to prep for a Curtis/Miz rivalry. I really don't have anything to say about this potential feud for the time being. It could be good, but we shall wait and see.
You cannot escape the dark side
Before the Punk/Del Rio match, Pauly runs into Punk backstage and is completely okay with him doing his own thing. Yes, Heyman is completely okay with Punk leaving him. Smithers, release the hounds….
The match goes well until Del Rio decides to run away. After the match, Dolph comes out to attack Del Rio. I think that's all the proof you need in order to figure out what Dolph and Del Rio are up to. Once they brawl towards the back, Brock Lesnar arrives and hits the F5 on Punk. The show ends with Brock Lesnar laughing while Punk is left licking his own wounds….
Since Punk has turned in back on Pauly, it was enviable for Brock to step in and do something about it. I kinda look at this like a scene from 'The Godfather'. Punk tries to leave the family, but the don isn't gonna have any of that, so he order one of his guys to think twice about his decision. There's always a consequence for leaving the team. Things are definitely only getting started with this angle and I'm already excited about it. Very well done if you ask me.
This was a damn good episode of Raw. I know I poke fun of a few things, but that's just me having fun with the product. It's guys in tights acting flamboyant. It doesn't need to be taken seriously and I think most fans can admit that pro wrestling is a bit of a guilty pleasure. There was some decent matches to check out, but what really sold this episode was the storyline progression. They continued to build upon the events of Payback, while adding some new things to the equation like Henry's troll-tirement and Brock attacking Punk. I said in the Payback review that things are starting to pick up for the summer season and they definitely continued that trend tonight. If they keep doing things like this all the way towards SummerSlam, I think we could witness some really good storylines/matches in the next couple of months. Hey, a great PPV followed by a great Raw? It's win, freakin' win in my book. That's gonna do it for the review and I hope you enjoyed it. Tell me what you thought of the review or tonight's show. I will see you guys and girls in the next one.