WWE Raw: Survivor Series Fallout
November 29, 2014 3:50 AM - Season 23, Episode 12 - Subscribe

The Authority is out, an icon is in, and a world champion makes his triumphant return to... well, not the ring, but at least he's back in the arena.

After a top-tier Survivor Series, it looks like we're beginning the Road to WrestleMania in earnest, but this episode of Raw was an almost inevitable letdown.

And there's the requisite off-screen drama courtesy of CM Punk, who appeared on the Art of Wrestling podcast with Colt Cabana to talk about why he left WWE after the Royal Rumble this year. Punk slammed WWE medical staff, Vince McMahon, the newly resurgent Ryback, and the business in general, saying, "I thought this thing that I loved, that I thought I loved, it just made me so miserable all the time."
posted by Etrigan (12 comments total)
Road to Wrestlemania, shoot, we're on a sprint to TLC. With only 3 weeks between PPVs, they started the push to TLC during SS for crying out loud.

I was a fan of the Anonymous GM, so I'm happy to see that return, and frankly think it's a much better option than putting Vince, Sting or Cena in charge. Seeing Bryan be the GM for a while might have been nice, I have no idea how close he is to returning to wrestle (yes, I'm choosing to forget the AGM ended up being Hornswoggle under the ring)

I'm still excited for New Day, hope they continue to get interesting spots. I'm also a sucker for tag-stables who randomly decide who will wrestle/defend the belts. I just love that gimmick for some reason.

The only redeeming thing about the Rose/Bunny v Tyson/Natalya match was that wwe.com reported it as a mixed tag inter-species match, which I assume makes it a first of a kind.

Pretty smooth marketing to put that Austin special on WWE Network after RAW...essentially begging all the November-freebie subscribers to not cancel. I still feel like $60 for Survivor Series, Royal Rumble and WM is a good value, so I'll keep my new subscription that long at least, but WWE will need to do something interesting to convince me to keep it up after that.

Thanks for the tip about that Punk podcast appearance, I'll have to check that out.

If I were going to a live show anytime soon I would absolutely have a sign that said "Mizdow put my butt in this seat"

(sorry for the long comment)
posted by jermsplan at 12:59 PM on December 4, 2014

Seeing Bryan be the GM for a while might have been nice, I have no idea how close he is to returning to wrestle

Apparently, no one else has any idea either:
Although Daniel Bryan said on SmackDown last week that he thinks he'll be back soon, WWE does not have any plans for him and there is no date set. There is, however, some talk that he could be a surprise entrant in the Royal Rumble, which would make sense considering they could protect him in a match like that.
With Reigns taking all the "I'm coming back" heat, I have to wonder whether they'll even push Bryan back farther than the Rumble.
posted by Etrigan at 1:17 PM on December 4, 2014

I found the TLC main event terribly underwhelming. It was a good match, had the requisite TLC huge spots, but honestly the match had no flow for me. I think it's probably a case of a good match that would have been fine if it weren't the main event and hadn't been shouted as "going to be the match of the year!!!!!" all over the web. The most compelling parts for me were when the two men were actually in the ring doing moves and counters. The whole "one guy drags the other around for a while and does one big thing after another to him" was just slow and boring for me.

I think I preferred REvolution.
posted by jermsplan at 7:34 AM on December 15, 2014

me too jermslpan -
I actually watch wrestling because I don't want to see people beaten up. I like the artistry and the story telling and the ballet. I don't like having everyone injure themselves. I hate TLC as a pay-per view every year because I think these matches should matter, should mean something should be important to the story - and not just a gimmick. Also fuck the announcers. They are just the absolute worst. they should be calling these items 'dangerous weapons', not 'toys'. It is gross enough that the pay per view is designed to hurt people, with the announcers simultaneously no-selling the danger and harm - it is just too discordant for me to be able to watch. What is the point???

I didn't watch Raw this week because I am just sick of it all. I can't imagine why these people have jobs- the writers/agents whatever they are called, but mostly JBL and Cole and god Lawler. Why not have announcers that can announce, and build interest in the matches and the story instead of whatever it is they are doing.

I much preferred (R)Evolution - it was a much better show.

posted by goneill at 8:45 AM on December 17, 2014

I hate TLC as a pay-per view every year because I think these matches should matter, should mean something should be important to the story - and not just a gimmick.

I'd been thinking this over for the last few days, and I agree. The "gimmick" PPVs have been watered down to the point that this year saw eight of the damn things: Royal Rumble, Elimination Chamber*, Extreme Rules, Money in the Bank, Night of Champions, Hell in a Cell, Survivor Series, and TLC. That is every PPV from September to February. Sure, some of those are less gimmicky than others, but Elimination Chamber, Extreme Rules, Hell in a Cell, and TLC are all perfectly good concepts that they've run into the ground by artificially forcing them onto a calendar instead of making them special. "Oh, it's October, I guess that means two guys are going to fight in Hell in a Cell, regardless of whether their feud actually deserves it yet."

And then we get TLC, which is so watered down that we have not just Chairs matches -- WHICH ARE NOT A THING -- but this year they had to add the Stairs match, which is so very not a thing that it actually makes other unrelated things into things that are not things.

The problem is that we have the time equivalent of a PPV every week now. Three hours of Raw week in and week out means that they can't "just" have a bunch of people wrestling each other once a month and expect people to pay for it, so we get these gimmickfests instead of longer matches that advance or end feuds.

* -- They've taken Elimination Chamber off the schedule for February 2015 in favor of the new Fast Lane PPV; there is speculation that Elimination Chamber will be relocated to later in the year to hype SummerSlam. There is no indication of how gimmicky Fast Lane will be.
posted by Etrigan at 9:18 AM on December 17, 2014

God, Elimination Chamber is the worst for me. At least with most of these gimmick PPVs it's just a matter of "well, why did they need an X match now? Whatever", but for Elimination Chamber it's a matter of "oh, who cares what the stories have been lately, we need 6 main eventers in one match, so put all their stories on hold, or something".

I've also been thinking since the PPV that what really needs to happen is that the the TLC match needs to be permanently retired outside of matches with 4+ men, preferably tag matches. It's just so much dead time watching two men setup a table, setup a ladder, then fall through the table over and over. At least with 6 or more people running around they can stagger in pairs or something.
posted by jermsplan at 10:06 AM on December 17, 2014

I just don't get it actually - these things should be for blood feuds to make us understand that something is special. Not regularly scheduled events. I preferred 'In Your House' type monthly specials where some big exciting things happen that have been building get resolved, and then teasers for the next big thing. That is why REvolution was so effective (well one of the millions of reasons), because there was stories that built to matches.

Honestly the PPV model is dying rapidly. There are no more payperviews and WWE needs to find ways to turn RAW watchers into Network subscribers, or lapsed watchers into Network subscribers. I don't think they have realized that - or they would be advertising the network's assets on RAW instead of that it costs 9.99 or is free.

For people like me - I subscribe to the Network because of NXT now and because of historical content - not for these matches. I do watch them on the network, but I wouldn't subscribe because of them. They are literally too embarrassingly stupid for me to feel comfortable spending my money on. Like my shame would be too great; as a wrestling fan that says a lot. I also don't think I'm alone. I had never bought a payperview before the network, but now the WWE gets $120 a year from me. Maybe I'm atypical? Maybe it makes sense for them to take the pay-per-views off the network - I don't know. I do know that I am not the target audience for a snuff film involving Dolph Ziggler. I like the guy and want him to have an awesome life!

I also think a stairs match only works with something hanging over the ring. And then it should involve more guys. I think a chairs match should only happen with guys who have surreptitiously been using chairs when reffs backs are turned. But in general I hate guys just getting hit with things that hurt for my enjoyment. I like wrestling and all these foreign objects, unless they are being used to build a heel - like Randy Savage's use of a foreign object in his shorts, just detract from that.
posted by goneill at 10:18 AM on December 17, 2014

I had like 1000 words typed here and realized no one wanted to read a book called "Jermsplan kind of stream of conscious rambles about his thoughts on WWE's PPV system" so I deleted it.

I agree largely with you two. Too many PPVs, too many gimmicks, too many hours on free (or cheap) tv, and clearly it's not working because they're literally giving it away and begging us to stay. I'm afraid nostalgia (ie, the back catalog) is not a long term winning strategy to sell the Network, but don't know how they can think they'll make money by giving us everything for what used to be the price of 2 PPVs a year.

I think the good news is that before too much longer the love NXT is getting is going to be too much to ignore. Some of the older guard needs to move on. Let some new people do some new things. Scary, I know, but you can do it, Vince!
posted by jermsplan at 2:24 PM on December 17, 2014

Rumor has it that the wrestlers are collectively grumbling the same thing, jermsplan. To the point that there was a big backstage meeting about it recently.
posted by Etrigan at 3:47 PM on December 17, 2014

Damn, forgot the link about that backstage meeting.
posted by Etrigan at 6:07 PM on December 17, 2014

maybe i am late here but i would like to read it jermsplan!
posted by goneill at 1:22 PM on December 19, 2014


Now that I have that out of my system...

Re: that backstage meeting, so Cena is just as annoyingly earnest and HUSTLE LOYALTY RESPECT in real life as he is on stage, huh? Ugh.

I admit I didn't watch much of Raw last night - Hogan, yuck - but I caught the youtube of the 6-woman Divas match (on mute, thanks to heads up from commenters at Cageside Seats about Lawler being in extra gross mode) and it was pretty decent. Paige, Emma, and Naomi all looked good in the ring. I really hope the division continues to improve. If only it could be given the respect and airtime that the women in NXT get...

When you do three versions of TLC/street fight/extreme rules matches in a row (Ambrose v Wyatt) it really does just start to get boring. Which is something that should never be said about a match like that!

Ziggler is my guy. He was actually pretty good on the mic on the live Smackdown last week -- I like it better when he does the more natural "I'm a better wrestler than you" thing than the "I'm doing this for the FANS" melodramatic stuff. But I'll take whatever I can get and put up with his weird wormy spaghetti hair because I love him in the ring.

Special ups for MyFanFare; maybe I'll stop losing track of these posts now!
posted by misskaz at 9:22 AM on December 23, 2014

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