Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, to my weekly recap list. I always appreciate my loyal readers, but for those of you who are new, each week I recap Raw with a long list.
The entries are made up of equal parts observations, humor, recap, play-by-play, revelations, speculations, questions, answers and anything else I notice during the show. I sometimes comment on commercials, too, just because I get bored during them.
Please read the section at the end of the recap this week. I have a little good news/bad news situation for you.
I try and interject some fun into these lists, so I hope you have fun reading this week's list of the 161 things we learned, loved and hated from the show.
1. I really hope this show is better than last week's.
2. The show opens with Michael Cole welcoming us to episode 999 of Raw.
3. They announce that CM Punk will be facing Big Show tonight.
4. Punk's music hits and the WWE Champion comes running out onto the stage with a lot of enthusiasm.
5. Cole and Lawler talk about how AJ was pretty impartial during the match last night.
6. Punk says that despite being straight edge, he loves Las Vegas. He reminds us how about a year ago he dropped his first pipe bomb.
7. Punk talks about proving that he is the best in the world since his big promo last year.
8. I can't argue. He has been on fire for the past year and he hasn't slowed down much in that time.
9. Big Show's music hits to big heat and he comes out looking unimpressed by Punk.
10. A very loud "Big Show Sucks" chant breaks out and he says "That is rude and I have a point I am trying to make."
11. That is the most weirdly honest thing I have heard a heel say in a long time. His delivery was kind of funny too.
12. Big Show says Punk is lucky that he did not win the MITB match last night.
13. I like Punk's line about "Close only counts in horse shoes and hand grenades." I have heard my Dad say that same thing for years.
14. Big Show talks about how the fans don't respect anyone, including Punk.
15. Wow! Big Show basically says the whole company revolves around one wrestler and Punk is not important.
16. Punk says he is the champ and Show isn't and Show is just bitter.
17. Remember when these two fought a couple years ago when Punk was a heel with a mask and Show was the cuddly babyface? Ah, memories.
18. I really like Punk, but I have always felt he did his best work as a heel. I want heel Punk back soon.
19. Big Show says Punk needs to watch his back for after their match in case Cena wants to cash in before he leaves.
20. Nice! Cole and Lawler tell us we can go back and watch the entire debut episode of Raw on YouTube. I think I will do that after this is over.
21. Kofi Kingston, R-Truth and Little Jimmy are backstage before commercial. I guess they are defending the titles next.
22. I gotta comment on this commercial. If the new Total Recall remake does not have a three-breasted hooker then I am walking out of the theater.
23. Fans can vote for which title will be defended next week, the US, IC or Divas.
24. We all know WWE polls don't work out well after 75 percent voted for the King/Cole match so I will guess that the Divas title will win the poll.
25. Kofi and Truth are out first for their match, followed by The Prime Time Players.
Rate the show from 1-5 stars
26. I think that if AW keeps up this headset gimmick then he will be getting some major heat soon. I want to yell at him from my couch every time I hear him talk through that stupid headset so I imagine the whole crowd does as well.
27. Seabiscuit and John Cena's darker doppelganger will probably win since WWE just throws the tag belts around like a shiny red ball.
28. OOH! Shiny red ball!
29. Kofi and Titus O'Neil start things off but Darren Young tags in quick only to get put down by Kofi with a nice dropkick.
30. Truth comes in and takes it to Young with a few signature moves before he and Kofi hit a double team for a near fall.
31. Kofi dives over the top rope to the outside to take out both men before we go to commercial.
32. AW was almost in the line of fire on that one.
33. We return to see Kofi and Young in the ring and Kofi is trying to get the tag to Truth but PTP keeps him away.
34. Kofi doesn't see a tag to O'Neil and he gets a shot to the head when he isn't looking.
35. OK, I have to admit that I laughed a bit when AW yelled "Hey ref! Don't put your hands on my men!" when the ref pulled O'Neil off of Kofi in the corner.
36. I don't know why it made me laugh. It was not particularly funny. Maybe it was his delivery.
37. Truth gets the hot tag and he starts running all over PTP.
38. AW is on the apron as Kofi hits Trouble in Paradise and Truth follows up with what Cole called Little Jimmy for the win.
39. I was wrong, the champs retained. I wonder if this will be a longer feud or if they will move on to Hunico and Camacho.
40. AJ is backstage and Daniel Bryan walks up.
41. She says she had to call the match down the middle and Bryan says he is sorry for all the awful things he has said about her since WrestleMania.
42. Hmm. He doesn't need to suck up to her anymore, so I wonder where this is going?
43. Eve walks up while Bryan is talking and she is pissed about how he ditched her last week.
44. She gets to choose her partner and Bryan is teaming with AJ.
45. This is strange. Eve is a heel and so is Bryan. AJ is a tweener so I am really curious to see who Eve picks.
46. If it's Ryder then it will make him look like a total sap. Then again, if that is how he has to get on TV, then I guess it's cool.
47. I don't get what this Tout thing they are hyping is supposed to be. Is it different from YouTube in some way?
48. I'm a little behind on the social media stuff. I will probably have to get a Twitter account soon. Any suggestions for handles I should use?
49. Alberto Del Rio is out after the break to face Zack Ryder, so I guess he won't be Eve's partner.
50. Del Rio is aggressive early on but he runs into an elbow and a boot.
Will John Cena win next Monday when he cashes in on Punk?
51. He comes back with some offense against Ryder's arm. Setting up for the Cross-Arm Breaker early I see.
52. Gross! Ryder has a wedgie from his trunks. That has to suck.
53. He taps pretty quickly to the CAB and Del Rio wins.
54. As Del Rio keeps the hold on, we hear Rey Mysterio's music hit and he is on the stage to a huge pop.
55. Del Rio looks mad as Rey runs down to meet him in the ring. Del Rio stops Rey in his tracks but Rey comes back and hits a huge headscissors.
56. The sheer force he had on that spin made him fly off Del Rio really far. That was like the old Rey again.
57. Rey hits a 619 to send Del Rio running.
58. It seems as if Rey's finisher had very little effect on Del Rio as Del Rio is staring him down from the ramp a few seconds later. Good to have Rey back.
59. Heath Slater looks back at his Raw debut as his favorite moment in the history of the show.
60. I gotta give him some credit for making fun of his recent losses to legends. I think Slater has potential but he has to do something to stand out from the crowd soon or he will be destined for a pink slip.
61. Slater is in the ring after the break and he is waiting for the next legend to come out.
62. Awesome! It's Rikishi! I love this guy.
63. Make fun of me if you want, but there was something about Too Cool that I just loved.
64. Cole runs through the list of family connections Rikishi has in the business. Nice to see them acknowledging history.
65. Rikishi gets a chant as the bell rings.
66. Damn! Rikishi hits a savate kick like he has been doing it daily since leaving WWE.
67. He hits the stinkface and then the Yokozuna-style sit down splash for the win.
68. Haha! Nice. The lights go out and when they come back The Usos are in the ring to dance the Too Cool dance with Rikishi.
69. That was a great moment. WWE needs to do stuff like that more often. There is so much family in WWE and this is the kind of thing that works well once in a while. Not every week, but a few more times a year would be nice.
70. Eve comes out for her match after the break.
71. Her outfit reminds me of the thing Whitney Houston wore in The Bodyguard at the end during her concert.
72. She reveals her partner to be The Miz, who if you remember is D-Bry's old NXT mentor.
73. Daniel Bryan comes out to a huge Yes Chant, followed by AJ, who the crowd still seems split on.
74. Miz and Bryan start off and Miz backs Bryan into the corner. Bryan reverses and hits a long series of kicks in the chest to Miz.
75. Miz hits a running kick to the face forcing Bryan to tag AJ. Eve comes in and pushes AJ into the corner.
76. Eve kicks AJ right in the face for a near fall. The way AJ grabbed her mouth makes me think more contact was made than intended.
77. Nice. Eve sits on the top rope and pulls AJ up in a headlock so AJ has her legs swinging below her.
78. AJ hits a couple nice kicks to take back control and then she hits the shining wizard but Miz is distracting the ref so she can't get the pin.
79. AJ dropkicks Miz off the apron and he stares her down. He actually smiles a bit too.
80. Eve rolls up AJ, but Bryan comes in and pushes them so AJ is on top while the ref was making Miz leave the ring.
81. I haven't seen an ending work like that in years. Kudos to whoever set that up.
82. Bryan gets on the mic after the match and says he has to say something. He says he loves AJ and she looks a little stunned.
83. He grabs something from someone at ringside and it turns out to be a ring for him to propose with. He says he proposed last week to become WWE champion, but this week he is just doing it because he wants to.
84. AJ starts crying a little as he opens the ring box and he slips it on her finger before holding up a mic for her to respond.
85. The crowd is very vocal about what they want, but she says yes anyway and they make out in the ring.
86. Brie Bella is gonna be pissed tonight.
87. AJ and Bryan start screaming YES and some of the crowd chants with them and some of them chant NO!
88. They show a flash back of when Rocky dumped Stone Cold over a bridge along with his custom title.
89. Why can't WWE do stuff that interesting and entertaining these days?
90. Bryan apparently tweeted that he and AJ will be getting married during Raw next week.
91. Jack Swagger is out after the break. Cole talks about his losing streak and how he needs to really prove himself.
92. Ryback is his opponent. I guess he is not reversing that losing streak tonight.
93. Although Swagger handing Ryback his first loss would be kind of awesome.
94. Swagger attacks Ryback before the bell and he hits the gut-wrench powerbomb right away, followed by the Swagger-bomb.
95. Swagger tries for an ankle lock but Ryback kicks him off only to get knocked down by Swagger.
96. Cole points out how this match has not even started yet since the bell never rang.
97. Ryback takes control and hits a big spinebuster followed by the double powerbomb.
98. Ryback vs. Swagger is a feud I can surprisingly get behind. I hope it continues on SmackDown this week. I would love to see Swagger get a boost from a win over Ryback.
99. Vickie is out after commercial and she brings out the MITB winner, Dolph Ziggler.
100. Ziggler talks about how every MITB winner has gone on to win the title. I hope this does not mean he is going to curse himself and be the first to fail.
101. Ziggler is saying he will be better than a laundry list of superstars.
102. Why is Vickie playing the Ed McMahon role by repeating everything Ziggler says and then laughing?
103. And no, I did not say the name wrong. Ed McMahon is not part of the WWE McMahon family. He is a famous comedian and sidekick to Johnny Carson. Rest in Peace, Ed.
104. I felt the need to explain that because even I should be too young to know who he is.
105. Chris Jericho is out to a nice pop and Ziggler cuts him off right away to remind Jericho that he has not won anything major in a long time, including MITB.
106. Ziggler runs down Jericho pretty damn well. He makes several relevant points.
107. Ziggler says Jericho is all hype. Jericho hasn't actually said a word yet.
108. This is a money-making feud right here. Both of them are so good that they couldn't put on a bad match if they tried.
109. Jericho hits a Codebreaker out of nowhere to silence Ziggler.
110. Ziggler is smiling a little when he recovers. It looks like it was his intention to make Jericho upset.
111. That little detail of Ziggler smiling at the end actually makes things way more interesting. Now I want to know if Ziggler has a bigger plan in mind. Had Jericho just left and nothing else happened I would have thought nothing of it.
112. Oh my God. Paul Heyman looks so creepy in the graphic for next week's show.
113. Brodus Clay is out next with the Funkadactyls.
114. You know, I am really let down by Brodus Clay. When he first showed up I thought he was going to progress and make this gimmick awesome like Rikishi did with his, but he has not changed one bit since that first night.
115. I am starting to see more parallels between Brodus Clay and Junkyard Dog, although JYD was way cooler than Clay.
116. Wait a second! JTG still works here? Well, I'll be a monkey's uncle.
117. JTG has a new look with standard trunks and a new vest.
118. JTG getting his own entrance is a little surprising given that he is usually given the jobber treatment.
119. Clay uses his power to push JTG around with a few slams and elbows.
120. JTG hits a kick in the corner and then takes out Clay's knee with a couple chop blocks.
121. He mocks Clay's dance a bit before putting on a front face lock.
122. Clay pushes him off but his knee is hurt and JTG tries to capitalize, but fails miserably.
123. Clay ends up hitting the big splash for the pin and the win. So I guess JTG is still a jobber.
124. Why did WWE break up Cryme Tyme? They actually built a small following and they would fit right in with today's teams.
125. Clay brings in some little kids to dance with him again. I like that they do that but I think it should be something they do during commercials and at live events.
126. Donald Trump shows a clip of Bobby Lashley taking off Vince's hat after he had his head shaved.
127. I wonder where Lashley would be in WWE today had he never left?
128. What do you think? Would he be on the same level as Cena and Punk or would he have fallen back to the mid-card?
129. Big Show and CM Punk are out after the break for the main event.
130. Punk is kicking Show's legs to keep his distance from the giant, but Show eventually pushes him into the corner.
131. Big Show takes down Punk with a big headbutt.
132. Show pulls Punk across the apron and hits a giant slap to his chest.
133. Some fan at ringside is yelling about as loud as AW sounded on his headset.
134. Show runs into the steel post after Punk moves and Punk goes on the offensive.
135. Show catches Punk in mid-air and slams him with one arm.
136. Show is looking like a better heel tonight than I have seen from him recently. I like his attitude.
137. Big Show starts taking shots to Punk's ribs, which doubles the champ over.
138. Punk manages to get a sleeper hold locked in and Show starts to fade.
139. Show puts Punk down and tries for a corner splash but Punk is able to move.
140. I was just thinking, can Punk even put the Anaconda Vise on Show? I know he won't be able to hit the GTS and the submission seems like the next logical finisher to use, but Show is so big that applying it might be impossible.
141. Show sets up for the WMD and Punk ducks and hits a big roundhouse to Show's head, followed by a couple of jumping kicks to Show's noggin.
142. Punk hits the high knee in the corner and he gets off so he can hit a second and a third.
143. That third one looked nasty. I wonder how hard he really hit Show.
144. Show pushes off the bulldog attempt but he runs into the corner and takes himself down.
145. Punk climbs up and hits the Macho Man elbow, which Show kicks out of with authority.
146. Show catches Punk after a springboard and hits a Chokeslam but Punk gets his foot on the ropes to break the pin.
147. Show starts pounding Punk's ribs again in the corner and he ends up shoving the ref, which gets him DQ'd.
148. Show just keeps demolishing Punk after the bell.
149. Cena's music hits and he gets a big pop.
150. He looks like he is stopping Big Show from hitting Punk with the WMD instead of cashing in.
151. Show leaves and Cena grabs a mic.
152. He starts talking but Big Show talks over him and says he knows Cena is going to cash in the case right now.
153. Big Show says Cena would be an idiot not to cash in right now as a ref appears in the ring.
154. Cena says NO!
155. Cena says he is going to cash in next week at the 1000th Raw so it is he and Punk when they are both fresh.
156. Cena hits Show with the case and he and Punk hold their prizes high to end the show.
157. I called this last night during the Live Blog. I knew he would make the match ahead of time because he is too much of a good guy to take advantage of a downed opponent.
158. This was a decent show. Nothing really spectacular happened, but it did not feel like it was a bad show ,either.
159. I do think the AJ/Bryan wedding will somehow involve Kane since he has been at the center of every WWE wedding in recent memory somehow.
160. I am a little surprised we did not see anything involving Sheamus, Santino or Christian.
161. Next week's show better deliver big. They have promoted this almost as heavily as they promoted WrestleMania.
Now, for the good news, bad news. First I will give the bad news, next week's Raw 1000 recap list will be the last Raw recap list in the foreseeable future.
The good news is that I will instead be taking over the duties of doing the B/R Live Raw Blog on a regular basis going forward.
I understand that many of you who enjoy the recaps are going to be disappointed. You guys are the reason these became so successful and it is because of that support that I have decided to do the Live Blogs going forward.
This is a great opportunity for me to expand my horizons and I hope you will continue to enjoy my coverage on the Raw Live Blogs. I will do my best to provide the same level of entertainment there as I have on these pieces.
On a positive note, I will continue to do the standard recap lists for SmackDown and I will occasionally do one for Impact if the episode is particularly entertaining. I will also do a recap list for any PPV which I am unable to cover live.
Again, thank you for all the support you guys have shown me on these lists and hopefully you enjoy the Live Blogs just as much.