The guest host gimmick has had its ups and downs. Notable guests include Shaq, Seth Greene and Ted Dibiase, the Million Dollar Man. Each brought something new and unique to the show and added to the storyline in one way or another.
Besides ZZ Top, who didn't seem like they knew where they were most of the time and provided the absolute worst guitar synching I've ever seen (most 13-year-old air guitarists are more convincing), there haven't been a whole lot of letdowns yet.
Enter Jeremy Piven.
The night started off innocently enough with announcer Lillian Garcia going over Piven's credentials and ending with: "...he is the star of The Goods: Live Hard Sell Hard, which HAPPENS to be opening on Aug. 14."
I'm fine with that. However this show more than any other, even the Dave and Buster's episode where Michael Cole exclaimed loudly during a match: "It's like Dave and Buster's would say: Too much fun!," went out of its way to sell that damn movie to the crowd.
Listen, WWE: your audience HAPPENS to not all be blundering, ignorant lemmings.
On that same Dave and Buster's episode of RAW I tried counting the number of times they tried to sell me on the idea of Dave and Buster's (like I need convincing to play video games and drink beer). Here's what I counted: 1) Commercials during the slotted commercial time 2) Commercials during the actual show 3) D&B logo next to wrestlers name while entering the ring 4) Michael Cole yelling out the aforementioned quote that BARELY fit into what was actually happening.
This last episode however BAR NONE ranks at the largest piece of consumer prostitution I have ever seen in any visual medium EVER. You had trailers going on in the background of scenes, select scenes (some of which, if they are supposed to be creme of the crop says a lot of the quality of the movie) played during the show from the movie itself, the release date dropped NOT EVEN CASUALLY during COMPLETELY UNRELATED CONVERSATIONS so many times I lost count, posters of the movie were in the background of every backstage scene almost subliminally.
The only thing sleazier would have been a shot of Jeremy Piven humping a television set that was playing the first five minutes of the movie while Piven just shouting in ecstasy the release date over and over again till the clip stopped.
The topping on the cake as well was that the matches during the show didn't even make up for the corporate reaming I was taking. This show had the three downfalls that make a bad RAW (which to WWEs credit I haven't seen in quite some time, these include:
1) No Chris Jericho match
2) John Cena miraculously wins despite the odds (this time it was 10 or so guys, what's next? 20 guys? They are going to have to hire more heels)
3) A twist that makes absolutely no sense in retrospect
I'll leave you with the only thing that cheered me up about this show:reading the comments section of some page Jeremy Piven's twitter linked to:
"I have to agree, Raw was terrible last night, felt ashamed to watch it, and your co-host, how old is he? 10? it was bad, and every other word was promoting a movie I refuse to go see just because of what happened last night. You're a very respected actor, what were you doing last night?"
"His was probably the worst RAW I've seen in ages. PRODUCT PLACEMENT PRODUCT PLACEMENT THE GOODS seriously, i hope your movie fails, never do live tv again."
"Summerfest? you stupid fuck. At least know the product you are working for."
I love wrestling fans.