It’s Time to Go Home: Raw Regurgitated, 8/12

It’s really great that WAY BARRA AND THE WAY BARRA BARRAG is wrestling Daniel Bryan to kick off a show. I don’t get ION television, so this is a first for me.

There’s absolutely no rational explanation why Brad Maddox’s entrance is A) the theme from Raw and B) not him singing. Profits may be down this quarter, but how expensive could a microphone and some studio time with Jim Johnston cost?

SummerSlam drinking game – Rule #1: During the main event on Sunday, every time they mention that Daniel Bryan was trained by HBK or William Regal, 3 sips. 5 sips if it’s after a kip-up/Regal stretch

The crowd really loves the anticipatory “OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO” part of DB’s rallies, to the point where they always shoot their load on it way too soon. Act like you’ve been here before, Sac-Town.

That was the fastest three-count-that-was-actually-a-three-count ever. Normally, fast counts are simply 12ishThr-SUPER FUCKING RUNAWAY! but Brad stayed in for the whole show. Good for him.

***

No one should be complaining about the new Money in the Bank briefcase, but I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t hoped it was made of mahogany when I first saw it. That thing is SHARP. But why is it only the domain of the heel to have nice things? Is Damien Sandow or Alberto Del Rio really any less materialistic than a dude who buys his girlfriend a new Range Rover because he doesn’t want to marry her?

Cody Rhodes explaining that he’s just pissed off that Damien Sandow screwed him out of the briefcase and then was an asshole about it afterwards is exactly what he should be doing. There’s just enough nuance that he should make it clear that he’s not being a crybaby, but that Damien Sandow is a Dick.

Real Talk: Sandow’s version of the “smart heel” gimmick is some next level shit.

SummerSlam drinking game – Rule #2: A chug for every time the announcers say “Sandow-ized” and a sip for every “Money in the Bank briefcase” mention.

If Randy Orton ever gets half as over as the RKO is, he’ll basically be the white Rock. Except, you know, without the charisma or charm. He will tie him in “ridiculously elaborate tattoos you’re just happy aren’t something from the absolute worst part of the 90’s”, however.

***

God Bless the Shield.

Despite how incredibly wooden his mic work is, Brock Lesnar does actually come off as natural in his pre-taped promos. Mostly because he’s a meathead jock killing machine, and those are the type of mouthwords they make in real life.

Is Brock Lesnar going to rape CM Punk? Is that what he means by “he’s going to be victimized”?

***

Outside of Big E’s pre-taped promo, this Natalya/Great Khali vs. Big E./AJ match was the worst thing I’ve ever seen. Legitimately. I don’t even know what to say.

***

A (FIRST EVER) guest joke from Noah:

***WARNING! ACTUAL WRESTLING DISCUSSION AHEAD! PLEASE KEEP EYES AND EARS INSIDE KAYFABE*** Holy shit was this segments all kinds of fantastic. From beginning to end, this was a brilliant way to shoehorn in an added (if wholly unnecessary) element to one of the most anticipated organic main events in a long, long time. At least since CM Punk vs. John Cena from Money in the Bank 2011. Brad and Vince articulated why they are nefariously planning to screw over Daniel Bryan, how they are playing to do it, and all while pretending to be upstanding citizens. That Triple H came down — which made the crowd LOSE THEIR SHIT — to make it about him on some level is okay, because whether or not we like it, they need to push this McMahon vs. McMahon vs. McMahon feud, as it’s going to be the big money feud for the next six months while they try to build Daniel Bryan (I’m assuming) into the next big star alongside CM Punk and John Cena. This isn’t quite as good as the (I literally can’t believe I’m saying this) Miz TV bit that’s coming on later, but it’s still a perfect example of how you get non-smart fans even more excited for a match they were already crazy excited for. People (myself included) love Triple H, and his involvement will only generate more interest. Also, he can’t win the belt, so what’s the worst that could POSSIBLY happen? ***ACTUAL WRESTLING DISCUSSION NOW OVER PLEASE ENJOY YOUR COMPLIMENTARY SONIC MILKSHAKE ON THE WAY OUT***

We can all go home, that was the best sell of a Pedigree ever. Thank you, Brad. You’re perfect just the way you are.

***

Of all the things I love about my girlfriend, I think the top of the list includes her intense dislike of any in-the-woods-related b-roll in Bray Wyatt vignettes.

Will Bray get an actual flame for SummerSlam, or are we going to have to suffer through him struggling to turn off that cheap lantern for the next ten years?

It’s like the entire Wyatt family forgot that Kane is made of magic.

***

Good to see Natalya getting on television, you know, without the gas, I mean.

***

If Ricardo Rodriguez comes back as someone else’s ring announcer, will he continue to do it in Spanish?

Alberto reminds me, oddly enough, of Big Van Vader. Incredibly stiff and violent, while still being extremely agile for someone his size. Just, you know, not also a fat piece of shit.

Kofi Kingston needs to stop clapping before trying to hit Trouble in Paradise. Because he desperately needs a heel turn. Also, it’s stupid. But mostly the “heel turn to make his character remotely interesting (or honestly, to give him a character to begin with)” part.

Alberto Del Rio speaking half in Spanish is the best possible thing to get the crowd to really hate him. Not only do people dislike not being able to understand you, white people hate ethnic minorities. So, that’s a win-win.

***

“It pains me to say this, Sacramento, but you could be whiter!”

The Art of the Heel Promo with Zeb Colter, Zeb Colter

So, they’re just  going with full Superman on Antonio Cesaro? I’ll allow it.

Man, if the Usos don’t watch out, they are going to get too over as a real brother tag team to not also be horrible drug addicts. A real tragedy.

***

Has anyone ever sat on the couch during Miz TV? Even the seats on the Abraham Washington got more play than those things.

People on the internet have commended him, but if The Miz is this Miz while he’s “hosting” SummerSlam, then it might actually add something to the show.

SummerSlam drinking game – Rule #3: A sip for every time the Miz slightly flubs a line as host of SummerSlam, a chug for every time he forgets what he was supposed to say and shotgun a full beer every time he makes a good point.

SummerSlam drinking game – Rule #4: During the main event every time an announcer mentions how divided the crowd is – 2 sips, mentions how much of a “reaction” John Cena gets – 3 sips, talks about how “hot” Daniel Bryan is “right now” – 5 sips

Even before that amazing segment, this has been as good a build as you could possibly imagine. Which is what happens when you stop scripting promos, start actually scripting storylines and let your performers mention the words “wrestling” and say things like “this belt is important and not at all a prop”. Weird.

***

Oof.

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HERE ARE ALL THE PEOPLE FAMOUS ENOUGH FOR US TO BOTHER PUTTING THEIR ENTRANCE ON TV! ENJOY THE “ANTICIPATION” OF SEEING THE OTHER IDIOTS WE PUT IN THIS MATCH WHEN WE COME BACK LIVE! TO MONDAY NIGHT RAW!

Oh, well, except for That Dude.

And of course, RVD wins. At least we don’t have to pay to watch him on Sunday. Also, who doesn’t love a Big Show/Mark Henry tag title match versus the Shield? Other than people who don’t like Tons of Funk matches, of course.

***

SummerSlam drinking game – Rule #5: A sip for every time the words “Beast” or “Best” are said the entire night, chug for the phrase “big fight feel” and SG’d a B for every F-5 or G2S. Editor’s note: you will be dead after this.

The real lesson of all this? Brock Lesnar is terrible at making plans.

Not to end on a down note, but this entire bit made little to no sense. Why establish that Brock Lesnar is a total moron who will get outsmarted by CM Punk on the Monday before the PPV we’re going to pay to see to find out if CM Punk can outsmart Lesnar? Why would you do that? This makes me sad. At least we’ll always have the last month. And Paris.