“‘Oui! Oui!’ they said. ‘Oui! Oui!’”

Raw Regurgitated, 4/30

It also should be mentioned that between the earlier segment with Jean et Francois, as well as Sasha, having Charley stand in what appears to be a place relatively close to gorilla to do interviews works as both a stand-alone interview segment and a sideline interview in a traditional sports broadcast. Stand-ups, like those Renee Young and Mean Gene are best known for, still certainly have serious value, but as those kinds of roles are increasingly robust explorations of character now. Renee is a person who exists in the show as a character with thoughts, feelings and biases whose job is to present the show, in the same way it is her canonically acknowledged actual husband Dean Ambrose’s job to wrestle. While Charley dips her toe in those waters occasionally, even her most pointed performances are in instance so egregious that to have her remain neutral would be unreasonable like the Alexa Bliss hot mic incident. Having Charley and, to a lesser extent, Mike Rome (who hews closer to Renee at this juncture) play relative cyphers rounds out the cast in a way that feels both unique to fabrication of pro wrestling and deeply reminiscent of a “true” sports broadcast.

Although it would have been appropriate to have a this card largely filled with female superstars last night considering they were shut out of last Friday’s performance and will not be the majority of the card this Sunday, two very solid to good matches — with Ruby Riott and Sasha Banks‘ initial contest much closer to the latter —  is a sign that things have at least returned to the only slightly annoying status quo of just not quite enough time dedicated to what’s frequently been the most interesting and dynamic part of their roster. And not the retrograde obnoxiousness of having to apologize for women being shown on the big screen during Friday’s GRR, let alone even allowed in the stadium at all.

Also this spot, y’all:

***

Whatever happens over the next few years, these past few days between the GRR, last night’s Raw and this Sunday’s Backlash will likely be remembered as a fork in the road. Braun Strowman, for the first time, truly feels like he has a chance at the throne Roman has been eyeing for the last few years. Both in and out of storyline, Strowman’s ascendence adds a new wrinkle to the attention and “push” that Roman is currently navigating. It not only puts a timeline or even time limit on Reign’s Savannah campaign — as he has to reach his goals before Braun’s GET THESE HANDS t-shirt sales overtake the “Roman Empire” — but gives a clear choice for the alternative to eventually overtake him. We are just a few episodes like this before it becomes a matter of when and not if.

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