WWE Raw Review (9/26/11): John Cena and CM Punk Push to Hell in a Cell

Mike Shannon@@DLman91Featured ColumnistSeptember 27, 2011

-LIVE! from I Wasn't Paying Attention, USA. (Kansas City - ED.)

-Do we really have to call every single show a "supershow"? Just end the stupid brand extension and get it over with.

-So COOHHH hits the ring while we recap the "firing" of Awesome Truth. So we're just going to fire someone every single week until that gimmick is dead and buried too I guess? Triple H explains that Truth and Miz were fired for attacking a WWE referee and not meaning their apology. Doesn't that mean Trips would have to fire, oh geez, I dunno...EVERY SINGLE HEEL EVER?

-Before COOHHH can continue, Dolph and Vickie come out to whine and complain about Wolverine breaking his jaw last week. A couple of lame Hunter jokes later, Cody Rhodes hits the ring to moan about Randy Orton bashing him with a ring bell on Smackdown.

BUT WAIT...Christian also has a bone to pick with COOHHH. It's only a two-hour show guys, let's go.

Captain Charisma does the union thing and attempts to organize the heels into filing a massive lawsuit against WWE. However, Christian will forget the whole thing if he gets just one...more...match. Because he's a "smart" guy, HHH immediately screws him over and books Christian against Cena (non-title), Orton on Friday and Sheamus on Sunday at the PPV.

Oh and Dolph Ziggler has to face Zack Ryder while Cody (after pissing Hunter off) has to defend the Intercontinental title in a 10-man battle royal.

Intercontinental Title
10-Man Battle Royal

I'll just name the guys as we go since I don't think this one is going to take very long. Cody powders out as Drew McIntyre gets tossed immediately because he's a jobber and sucks.

Suddenly, heel Sin Cara runs out and yanks out babyface Sin Cara and they brawl on the outside. Babyface Sin Cara was never eliminated but the referees are complete morons so they send both guys to the back.

Booker freaks out and puts over Ted DiBiase but that ship may have sailed. Justin Gabriel skins the cat on Alex Riley and pulls him out to the apron so Sheamus casually eliminates both of them. Not to be outdone, Ezekiel Jackson tosses Daniel Bryan and John Morrison at the same time.

Sheamus and Shar Pei Jackson face off and Sheamus gets the better of it but DiBiase attacks to break it up. Teddy makes the mistake of heading to the top and Cody Rhodes tosses him out.

Jackson attempts to get rid of Cody but Rhodes low-bridges him on a charge and Jackson goes flying, leaving Cody to try his luck against Sheamus.

Sheamus dominates and looks for the Razor's Edge but Christian runs down to the ring to provide interference. The distraction allows Cody to avoid the Brogue Kick and use the mask to crack Sheamus in the head for the final elimination.

Winner and STILL Champion: Cody Rhodes

-Not a bad battle royal and at least they're letting Cody hold the belt for a bit. Christian runs Sheamus into the ring post in retribution for his attack on Smackdown. Call the whole thing ** for short but decent stuff.

-Recap of Mizark Henry putting The King through the announce table last week. Cole claims that he's also suffering from anal bleeding...how exactly would he know that?

-Meanwhile, David Otunga meets John Laurinaitis.

-Oh boy, a hype video for freaking Kelly Kelly...how much money has this woman drawn in her life? Oh yeah...ZERO.


Kelly Kelly & Eve vs. Beth Phoenix & Natalya

Beth controls Eve with a wristlock and a Greco-Roman hair pull before Natalya comes in for a double press slam. Neidhart goes to work on the leg and busts out a reverse surfboard to absolutely zero reaction from the live crowd.

Beth misses a charge against the ropes and Eve gets the hot tag to Kelly, who hits her BRUTALLY bad flying headscissors and equally as bad bulldog for two. A big brawl erupts and Kelly is left alone with Beth, who hits the Glam Slam for the win.

Winners: Beth Phoenix & Natalya

-Beth and Natalya tried to get all innovative and stuff but the crowd didn't care and Kelly is so useless that she can't do anything other than her over-rehearsed stuff *1/2.

Mark Henry vs. The Great Khali

To be honest, I don't watch Smackdown and didn't even know the Great Khali still had a job. Henry smacks Khali with the title belt before the bell and delivers the World's Fattest Slam to voice his displeasure at being fined by HHH earlier.

No Contest

-DUD, of course.

-Well, they are certainly investing quite a bit of time in getting Henry over as a monster. At least they are doing it the old-school way and not making him a cowardly guy like every single other guy on the roster.

-Oh good, it's 10:00 PM and that means it's time for the John Cena Variety Hour and his attempt to do the hard sell of Hell in a Cell. Typical over-the-top Cena interview follows, designed to get reactions from the female and prepubescent population. CM Punk joins us for commentary and wears a suit coat over his t-shirt to class the place up a little bit.

John Cena vs. Christian

Ah, Alberto Del Rio will also be on commentary, so that should be a trainwreck. Cena backdrops Christian right away but he comes back with a tornado DDT. The crowd starts their dueling chant battle while Cena fires off a suplex that amounts to nothing.

Christian hits his elbow off the top but makes the mistake of heading up top again and misses a splash. Cena attempts his comeback but Christian boots him and tries the Killswitch. Of course, Cena refuses that to the Five Knuckle Shuffle and CM Punk makes fun of Booker T.

Cena looks to finish for Christian powders out. Cena sends him into the announce table which triggers a brawl between Punk and Del Rio. Cena heads into the ring to finish off Christian but Del Rio runs in with an enzugiri to end the match and fulfill my prediction.

Winner by DQ: John Cena

-Match was totally secondary to the angle surrounding it and they really didn't have time to do much *. Del Rio promises to win the title and acts all serious and stuff.

-They are really serious about this WWE Network, aren't they? That thing would be a financial disaster, I really hope they come to their senses. If you have time, go check out the numbers for WWE 24/7 (or Classics On-Demand...whatever they are calling it) and you'll understand why I'm saying that.

US Title
Zack Ryder vs. Dolph Ziggler
Whatever happened the whole "I'm Dolph Ziggler" gimmick? Did they ever pay that off with anything? Probably not.

Ziggler is angry so he stomps away for a quick two and then hits a Stinger Splash in the corner. A second splash attempt misses, though, and Ryder makes the comeback and hits the Woo Woo Woo Kick against the buckles.

Vickie gets on the apron to run interference though, allowing Jack Swagger to get a cheap shot and the Zig Zag ends things.

Winner and STILL Champion: Dolph Ziggler

-So they prop up Ryder with a Hugh Jackman angle and a victory over Swagger but then squash him in a match a week later? Never understood that. The heels continue the beatdown but Air Boom makes the save. Teddy Long appears and books Air Boom & Ryder against Swagger and Bourne with a third guy.

Call the whole thing * for a nothing match.

Jack Swagger & Dolph Ziggler vs. Air Boom & Zack Ryder

Swagger controls Ryder to start as the heels are shorthanded because they couldn't find a third guy. Kofi hits a dropkick for two and Bourne comes in for some leg kicks. Swagger counters him though and brings in Dolph for a neckbreaker to turn Evan into our face-in-peril.

The heels switch off on Bourne and Swagger stomps away before going to the chickenwing submission hold. Bourne catches Swagger with a double knee press and gets a hot tag to Kofi who kicks Swagger's ass around the ring. 10-punch in the corner and things are looking good for the faces.

BUT WAIT...Vickie returns from the back with Mason Ryan looking as roid...I mean, as buff as ever. Kofi avoids Swagger and tags in Ryder but Zack runs into a hard clothesline. Mason Ryan tags in and looks for the kill...but promptly turns on Swagger and Ziggler.

Ryan destroys everyone and tells Ryder to finish them off so one Ruff Ryder, later we have our winning team.

Winners: Zack Ryder & Air Boom

-Match was fairly decent but that was very WCW-like with Mason Ryan appearing as a heel and then immediately turning with no explanation as to why he was out there in the first place. **1/2 for average stuff.

-Hype video for the Hell in a Cell match...not good when they're putting over the Cell itself over the participants.

-Cole, Booker and JR do the hard sell on the PPV.

-Meanwhile, David Otunga organizes Cody, Dolph, Vickie and Christian into a class action lawsuit against the WWE. Are you sure no one pinned Otunga on his way to the locker room? I mean, he hasn't jobbed in about five hours so you might want the Brooklyn Brawler to get a three count here soon.

Alberto Del Rio vs. CM Punk

What would a main event match be without John Cena on commentary? Punk controls to begin and sends Del Rio to ringside, where Punk follows with a double axhandle. Punk tosses Del Rio at John Cena, causing the dreaded STAREDOWN.

Back inside, some crappy camera work causes us to miss whatever Del Rio hits to take control of the match (gotta show John Cena on TV as much as possible after all). Punk recovers however and stomps away in the corner. Del Rio puts him on the apron with a back drop and an enzugiri sends Punk to the floor. CAN OUR HERO RECOVER? We'll find out after this commercial.

We return with Punk looking for the GTS but Del Rio plants him with a DDT for two. Alberto goes to work on the arm and Punk misses a blind charge, hitting the ring post with his shoulder. Del Rio smartly goes after the injured arm and hits a clothesline for two.

Del Rio charges with Punk on the ropes and goes flying to the outside. Well, every heel needs a move that they never hit properly. They do a nice little sequence that ends with Del Rio delivering a stunner to Punk's arm in a nice move. Punk counters with a neckbreaker for two and a double KO spot to get a little recovery time.

Punk starts to mount his comeback with a leg lariat and hits a high knee in the corner but Del Rio hits Divorce Court and stays on the arm. Del Rio looks to finish but Punk spins out and hits the KO Kick for the surprise pin and the win.

Winner: CM Punk

-That finish kind of came out of nowhere as the crowd barely reacted because they expected Del Rio to kick out. Still, a good match from two solid workers ***.

BUT WAIT...the cell above the ring lowers for some unknown reason (maybe it was the same guy who raised the briefcase at King of the Ring 99). Unfortunately for Ricardo Rodriguez, he gets stuck in there and takes a Go 2 Sleep from Punk.

Del Rio returns with a chair to save his virtuous manager and beats the hell out of Punk and Cena. Alberto wedges the chair in the corner and he tosses Punk into it. Del Rio stands stall with the steel chair as we fade to black.

Final Word

Well, I guess we'll find out next week if they did enough to make people buy another PPV two weeks after just buying one.

I don't think there's enough interest in the matches (most of which we have seen before) and people aren't willing to part with $50 on the promise of maybe seeing a title change or something good.

Tonight's Raw was average at best but that seems to be a common theme for this show right now.


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