WWE Drops the Ball Again: Death of the Raw Walk Off
Much like every wrestling fan who still clings to hope that the WWE will turn around the string of mundane mediocrity they have become synonymous with, I waited with great anticipation for tonight's Monday Night Raw Supershow.
The WWE had taken us to uncharted territories last week, with the abandonment of the Triple H regime en masse by WWE Superstars, announcers, Divas and even cameramen.
All week long, fans speculated as to what this would lead to.
The rebirth of The New World Order?
The rebirth of The Corporation?
An influx of new faces as "scabs" including men like the Kings of Wrestling?
I, myself, presumed that we would be seeing the beginning of the WWE's first Civil War, as HHH would entrench himself into his position as COO and refuse to quit, while the "Conspiracy" would uncoil itself against him and rip the locker room apart, with one half supporting HHH and the other half supporting the conspirators.
With all this speculation and excitement, what was the WWE Universe treated to tonight?
Triple H opening the show with the expected "I will not quit." diatribe, followed by "company-man" and tough guy promos pitched by John Cena, Sheamus and CM Punk.
The "skeleton crew" feel of the show was interesting and entertaining, and we were even treated to Sheamus vs. John Cena with special guest referee Triple H and special commentator CM Punk.
Then Vince McMahon's music hit and it may as well have been a dirge playing at the funeral of yet another interesting angle being laid to rest prematurely.
Instead of a war, Vince notified HHH that the Board of Directors said his services in running Raw were no longer needed, as they feared the financial ramifications of the stars of the WWE refusing to perform.
And Triple H, in typical fashion, backed down without a fight.
Yes, Triple H didn't even say a word, he just took the termination. In his place, John Laurinaitis was established as the interim Raw GM. And again, Triple H, just took it on the chin without a word. (But, on the bright side, he threatened to break John Laurinaitis' fingers and teeth a little later, so that's something, right?)
And that would be all she wrote for the uncharted territory the WWE led us in to.
Following that, it was absolutely no different from any other Raw that the WWE has put on before underneath a heel GM.
The show itself was replete with lackluster events, such as the return of Botch-a-mania with a divas tag match, a pointless six-man tag, John Morrison jobbing (again), and the WWE playing up Big Show vs. Mark Henry. (Which no one cares about.)
And when the WWE attempted to do something out of the ordinary and mundane, something you haven't seen before, it was these two gems:
1. John Laurinaitis fired Jim Ross, subjecting us to an evening full of Michael Cole's over-the-top heelishness and Jerry Lawler's antiquated one-liners from 1993.
2. They then totally defused the second most interesting thing the WWE had going outside of the Raw Walk Out: The Awesome Truth. John Laurinaitis simply reinstated them and they appeared to face CM Punk and Alberto Del Rio in the main-event.
So, that rebel element, the duo that people thought would link up with Kevin Nash and be brought back by Vince McMahon, in some form of NWO/Corporation grouping, simply waltzed back in under Johnny Ace with little to no fanfare at all.
Did someone forget to inform the WWE that The Awesome Truth were supposed to be rogues fighting against the "Conspiracy"? And that simply waltzing in underneath the man who now appears to be responsible for the entire conspiracy himself, makes little to no sense, whatsoever?
I understand that the Awesome Truth had to return, and I even believed that they would find themselves aligned with Johnny Ace at some point, but, perhaps I had too much faith in the WWE to draw it out and do it in a way that makes sense?
Then, to make matters worse, the WWE makes its already weak champion look even weaker by bailing out against heels in the main-event, guys who butchered him at Hell in the Cell. Then they make CM Punk look weak by getting beat down by them again. Then, they make The Awesome Truth look weak by getting ran off by Triple H and CM Punk, whom they just pummeled.
So, all of these guys who should be booked to look strong, are booked to look inferior to the 40-year-old with the dilapidated quads. Fantastic storytelling.
However, this is not the most disappointing matter of it all.
This angle looked to be so much. It, in my opinion, appeared to be far more promising that The Nexus, The Anonymous Raw General Manager, The CM Punk Reality Era, and any other big move the WWE has botched in recent years.
This looked to be a massive skirmish that could've included stars from across the board and made them relevant, it could have introduced new faces, forged new alliances, gone into new territory.
And yet, in a single swoop, in a single night, it has been reduced to nothing more than a John Laurinaitis power-play.
And we were treated to the same "Evil GM" antics that we have watched the WWE regurgitate again and again, from William Regal, Eric Bischoff, Stephanie McMahon, Vince McMahon, Vickie Guerrero, and any of the thousand heel GM's, Commissioners and executives the WWE has run through since the position was established.
Instead of something fresh and new, like a roster-wide war between pro-HHH and pro-conspiracy factions, instead of seeing scabs vs. protesters, instead of even seeing more interesting rehashes like another Corporation, or even seeing an influx of new faces led by some combination of CM Punk and The Awesome Truth?
We get John Lauriniaitis and the 393th reign of a "bad-guy general manager."
So, from here, I guess we get to see Johnny Ace's stooges in "The Awesome Truth", "Zig-Swag", Rhodes, Otunga, and Christian beat up on the good guys for a while.
Then we'll see Vince McMahon or someone step in and remove the "interim" General Manager and replace them with a face.
And then that face will make some exciting matches for a month.
And then all will go back to the way it was for much of the last five years.
So much for change.
I read a report that the WWE was going to start listening to what was being said on the Internet as it regarded their product.
If that's true, then I have only one thing to say to the WWE:
We're getting really sick of seeing the same crap. Do something new, or even your most ardent fans are going to start clicking the channel.
I'm disappointed in myself for actually praising you for the work you've done the last few weeks.
I almost forgot that your writing team is filled with abject failures.
What were those two words fans used to chant at Kurt Angle, again?
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