Wednesday, June 20, 2012

El Mariachi's RAW Thoughts: The End of People Power

(KOBEsh: TheRawLibrarian was on leave Tuesday, probably watching old Shawn Michaels tapes and weeping. I'm not really sure, but he went more MIA than Ludwig Borga. Our boy and semi-infrequent correspondant El Mariachi stepped up with a first-hand account of Monday Night RAW, emanating from the pit known as the Nassau Colliseum)

Having been to the last two live WWE events - No Way Out and Raw - I can't help but burst into "YES" chants, say "WHAT" after anything anyone says to me, and Pedigree every ten year old Cena fan I can find. My voice is shot, my ears are ringing, and I can't get the stink of the Izod Center off my shoes. I tried to mask it with the hillbilly musk of the Nassau Coliseum to no avail.

But I'm getting ahead of myself here. All I'm trying to get at is that, it has been a hell of a two day wrastlin' stretch and quite frankly, I'm "wrastled" out. So what do I do with my first moments of free time?

Write about wrestling.

In the past few months, the WrestleMania hangover has hit to the two brands hard. Ratings have been down thanks in no small part to the lack of cohesive story telling, incessant injuries and mind boggling booking of Vince and his crew. They've tried to rectify this through the heavy bleeding of
Raw over into Smackdown and vice versa but for the most part, the WWE is spinning its wheels right now with tons of top notch talent left to scratch their heads while the Funkasaurus rips off his pants and Aww Funk's the Funkadactyls live in front of your children, on the USA Network.

Though this has been somewhat of a tough time to care about the WWE, there has been some great things to arise from the ashes of WrestleMania 28. Daniel Bryan's presence permeates throughout the WWE and having been to the last two shows, I can tell you that the "YES" chant is here to stay. He has built himself into the most hatable heel on the roster and backs it up with some of the best technical wrestling the WWE has to offer. His match with CM Punk and Kane at No Way Out was one of two matches that were any good as well as his match with Sheamus on Raw last night. And with him, the horsefaced, quasi-sex-demon AJ has become one of the most entertaining parts of tuning into wrestling. Her turn from the innocent, doe-eyed girl to the sadistic, mask wearing, Harley Quinn has been the most interesting thing - and dare I say driving force - behind the WWE Championship power struggle (Full disclosure: AJ skipping around the ring on Raw last night in a Kane mask made me go outside and buy a "I Dig Crazy Chicks" CM Punk shirt, right then and there!)

There have been other things that the WWE has going for them. We have seen a glimmer of the future of the WWE throughout this time. Besides the NOS-induced rise in superstardom of DB, Dolph Ziggler has day in and day out shined as one of the brightest stars in the WWE's future. After getting buried following his brief feud with CM Punk, Dolph has slowly but surely made his way to the forefront once more at No Way Out, albeit largely being due to Alberto Del Rio getting a concussion.

Dolph's match with Sheamus at last Sunday's PPV and his subsequent bout with Jack Swagger on Raw, have finally set things in motion for his star to rise. The pairing of manager Vicky Guerrero and Dolph has done tremendous things for both of their careers but it is time to move on to bigger and better things. After all, "It's not showing off if you back it up". Unless it's Vicky backing it up. In that case I want no part it in.

At both shows, Dolph was hands down the most over guy in the roster. "Let's go Ziggler" chants were almost as deafening at the "Daniel Bryan" chants. Its nice to see that the hardcore wrestling fans out there appreciate just how good Dolph is. Though, I worry that with this amount of enthusiasm coming from the crowd could potentially turn
him face in the near future. Now, we know Dolph would straight up kill it at anything he does, but his #heel run has been stellar and a face turn would suck all the life out of his character and put him in the "buried pile" along with Sheamus.

No Way Out's crowd tore Sheamus a new arse hole with boos and rightfully so. Not only did he steal the World Heavyweight championship from the hardest working guy in the WWE in Daniel Brian at Wrestlemania, but since then his turn from hot headed Irishman to translucent softie has really taken away from his brand. At this point, the only way I can see him winning us back would be for him Celtic Cross Hornswoggle off the Titantron. Or maybe eat Heath Slater.

Speaking of Heath, I hope Cindy Lauper's Gold Record smash to the head imbedded shards of glass and hit songs into his frontal lobe. His involvement almost caused a riot at the Nassau Coliseum, and
rightfully so. The thousands of bros in attendance were foaming at the mouth when he told the crowd to shut up. The guy is terrible and he has boobs bigger than Cindy Lauper's. He seriously needs to go
somewhere and die.

But if I had to pick the one thing that the WWE has done right (or should I say HAD) was the rise of Executive VP of Talent Relations and the General Manager of Raw and Smackdown, Mr. John Laurinitis. His reign as the top heel in the company has had the nostalgic factor of Stone Cold vs Vinny Mac with Big Johnny and CM Punk constantly feuding. And even throughout all the contradictory decision making, flubbed up lines, broken motorized scooters and all, John has maintained a level of entertainment that the brands were seriously lacking.

But alas all things must come to an end and I must say that I am sad to see him "leave". Raw turned to a new chapter in the WWE while giving John a proper send beating the hell out of him. I can't say it wasn't entertaining to see them finally beat the piss out of Johnny but I also can't help but feel that the guy got an undeserved smackdown.

Now, I don't know when the taping of Raw ended last night (I haven't watched the telecast yet) but they continued to beat Johnny until approximately 11:31pm eastern standard time. First it was Cena who gave him the Attitude Adjustment facing each direction of the audience, then Big Show slapped the skin off of Johnny's chest about a dozen times or so, then Long Island's own Zack Ryder gave him the Broskie boot! And to finish it off, Triple H came out and gave him one of the worst taken Pedigrees I HAVE EVER SEEN. Seriously, This site should have documentation of what I speak. Worst. Pedigree. Ever.

But that's our Johnny. He wasn't polished, he wasn't fit, he wasn't well spoken, and he had the voice of a 70 year old chain smoker. He was everything that wrestling wasn't and that's why it worked. Even after Triple H lifted Johnny's shirt to show off the 37 welted hand prints on his back there were still boos pelted Johnny's way. You can't knock him for what he did with the little he had to do it with. People hated him because they were supposed to hate him, and that is why we loved him. So I tip my Forty to you John, and as the beer trickles to the curb and I say, "One for my homey".

Thank you, Johnny.

To People Power!

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