by Joe Thunder - October 31, 2011
We open RAW with a recording made by The Rock up on the big screen. Rock says Cena wants him to be his partner at the Survivor Series against Miz and Truth. The Rock says he has an answer for Cena and says hell no! He says but the fans hate Miz and Truth, and this is about what the people want. The Rock says yes. He goes on to trash Cena and even refers to the “froot loop troop” during his promo. The Rock’s ability to capture an audience with his words is something that will always amaze me. Electrifying doesn’t even begin to describe the way this guy has always cut promos. As much as I wish he had been there live in the arena, it sort of adds to the element of the Survivor Series match by not having The Rock around all the time.
Up next is CM Punk taking on Mark Henry: The match was made over the weekend with the stipulation that Punk would get a title shot at Alberto Del Rio if he could defeat Mark Henry. John Laurinaitis interrupts before the match to announce the stipulation for the match for the fans who don’t find out their information online. Punk locks up with Henry and gets hit across the back and then kicked. Henry whips him back into the same corner he pulled him out of and Punk kicks him in the face and then jumps off the middle rope for a sleeper. Henry counters and slams Punk down and gets a two count. Henry goes to hit Punk but Punk counters with a series of kicks until Henry throws him over the ropes but Punk comes back and kicks him in the face. Punk dives into the ring and knocks Henry down. Punk goes up for the flying elbow and hits it. Henry kicks out. We see Del Rio and Rodriguez at ringside. Ricardo jumps in the ring to pummel Mark Henry. This causes a dq and Mark Henry is the winner. Punk looks pissed. Punk dives through the middle rope onto Punk and then attacks Ricardo Rodriguez. Punk throws Ricardo into the ring and Henry hits him with the World’s Strongest Slam. Punk chases Del Rio to the back.
side notes: Jerry Lawler is far too excited for the Muppets. I’m not excited for this Michael Cole Challenge, but I’m very excited for RAW in two weeks in Boston, especially with all the advertisements we’ve had for the show.
The Muppets are introduced: Kermit welcomes us to RAW. Missy Piggy calls herself the original Diva. They are interrupted by Vicky Guerrero and Jack Swagger. Vicky calls them livestock. Swagger makes food references. Kermit calls Swagger Frankenstein. Kermit calls Vicky Swagger’s mom. Miss Piggy and Vicky go back and forth with excuse mes. Out comes Santino to a major pop! Santino says they are all excused. He tells Swagger he should be warming up because John “Laryngitis” made a match between he and Santino. Swagger says he doesn’t care about it because Ziggler will be in his corner. Santino says that won’t be happening tonight because Ziggler has a one on one match of his own with Zack Ryder. Kermit gives us a woo woo woo you know it! Out comes Kelly Kelly and Miss Piggy asks if she is a cowboy or a pirate. Kelly goes down to the ring. Surprisingly good comedy from the Muppets; I’ll be the first to admit that I was hesitant about them being on RAW, but it’s working for me so far. So far.
Divas Halloween Battle Royal: The divas are dressed up. I like the Bellas as Mario and Luigi. Beth Phoenix is the Queen of the Ring on commentary. Beth Phoenix says she will have the title forever. I like how this thing allows the divas to go through the ropes to be eliminated. Eve does an awesome standing moonsault on the Bellas! Kelly gives a stinkface to them before she and Eve eliminate them. Alicia, Natalya, Kelly and Eve are the final four in the ring. Alicia is elimated next. Natalya eliminates Kelly! Eve then tosses Natalya over the top and Eve is the winner! Natalya and Beth get into the ring and stare at Eve. Kelly and Alicia get in the ring to even the odds and the queens leave the ring.
Backstage segment: Bunsen is showing Beaker one of his new experiments in a bottle and Asks Beaker to bring it to Santino. Beaker runs into Christian. Christian stops Beaker and dumps out the bottle. Christian turns around to see Sheamus and Sheamus asks Christian if there is a problem. Christian says no and walks away. Sheamus tells Beaker he’s afraid he can’t make the family reunion this year. Sheamus asks him to tell Aunt Theresa he says hello. He then fixes his and Beaker’s hair. These guys are turning out to be pretty darn funny after all.
Air Boom vs Cody Rhodes and Wade Barrett: I have to say first that I’m glad they decided to make Air Boom relevant as Tag Team Champions rather than just showcase them in singles action with no direction. Cody and Bourne go at it and Cody mounts the offensive until Bourne kicks him in the stomach and tag in Kofi. They work a nice double team and Rhodes kicks out of a Kofi pin attempt. Kofi puts Cody in the corner and goes for the irish whip until it’s reversed. Cody charges Kofi but Kofi kicks him on the run. Barrett charges Kofi and gets kicked off the apron. Cody takes advantage and gets a two count. Rhodes with a russian leg sweep and a two count. Rhodes tags in Barrett and he whips Kofi off the ropes and hits a sideslam. He puts a ground submission on Kofi and Kofi powers out and Barrett uses fists on Kofi until he goes down and Barrett gets a two count on Kofi before tagging Cody back in. Cody stomps Kofi in the corner and the crowd boos. He does a snapmare on Kofi and locks on a ground chinlock. Kofi powers out with kicks to the head of Cody but Kofi reverses and tags in Barrett yet again. Barrett kicks Kofi in the corner and Cody punches Kofi while the ref is turned. Barrett tags Cody back in the ring. Crowd chants Cody sucks. Cody hits Kofi to the ground again. Cody mounts an offense until Kofi reverses and launches Rhodes with his legs. Kofi tags in Bourne as Barrett comes back in. Bourne does an offense of kicks and goes for a hurricanrana but Barrett catches him and goes for wasteland until Bourne reverses into a DDT! Great wrestling! Kofi and Cody both run into the ring and go after one another. Rhodes tosses Cody to the outside and Barrett grabs Bourne off the top rope and hits wasteland. This was a fun tag team match, but it leaves you to wonder about the credibility of the tag champs now that they’ve lost two weeks in a row. Christian comes down to the ring and goes after Kofi Kingston. Sheamus’ music hits and he comes down to make the save. It’s easy to see the elimination match forming for Survivor Series here.
Luxury Box: Walder and Statler are talking back and forth. Funny segment of “whats” here. Cole calls them both old fools and King says what.
Backstage segment: Laurinaitis is texting on his phone and Punk comes into his office asking what he has to do now to get his shot at Del Rio. Laurinaitis says Punk can have his match as long as Del Rio agrees to it. Punk says that seems fair. It’s interesting how Laurinaitis is now accidentally helping the face characters of the show. I know it’s scripted, but one can hope that this can lead to a possible face turn for a guy that everyone seems to think is just so terrible.
Alberto Del Rio vs Big Show: Del Rio hits Show and gets tossed into the corner. Show goes on the offense and knocks Del Rio down with a headbutt. Show slaps Del Rio across the chest in the corner. Show crushes Del Rio on the ropes with his leg. Del Rio does multiple kicks to Show’s leg until Show knocks him down with a headbutt. Del Rio gets up and Show irish whips him and knocks him down with a clothesline. Show suplexes Del Rio. The ring shakes. Show gets a two count. Show steps on Del Rio’s neck on the ropes. Show whips Del Rio into the corner and misses the charge. Show comes out of the corner and clotheslines Del Rio. Del Rio hits a punch and show counters. Show whips Del Rio corner to corner and charges until Del Rio kicks him in the face. Del Rio works the leg and then jumps on Show’s back and tries to apply the sleeper. Del Rio hits multiple headbutts and Show appears to be weakening. He drops down to one knee. Show’s head is turning a deep shade of red. Show stands back up and snapmares Del Rio over his shoulder. Show catches his breath while Del Rio recovers on the outside. Show goes outside and charges Del Rio and hits him with a fury of fists. Show breaks the count and Show shoves Del Rio into the barricade and hits a knee to Del Rio’s chest. Show breaks the count again. He slaps Del Rio in the chest again. Show hits the barricade when he misses the charge and Del Rio hits a big kick to Show’s head. Del Rio goes to the ring with Show on the outside. Show gets in the ring and Del Rio kicks Show in the head over and over. Del Rio finally has some offense. Show kicks out by tossing Del Rio in the air. Del Rio goes for another submission lock on Show’s neck. Del Rio brings Show low to the ground and locks in a better sleeper until Show stands up and falls backwards to counter Del Rio. They get to their feet and they exchange blows. Del Rio goes for another choke after a one count on Show; Show brings himself up and throws Del Rio before clotheslining him to the outside. Commercial break. Back from the break and Del Rio has show in a ground leg lock. Show is trying to fight out. Del Rio uses fists on Shows leg and show continues to try to reverse the hold. Show powers out with his leg to Del Rio’s skull. Del Rio goes on the offense until Show goes for a chokeslam; Del Rio kicks Show in the knee and hits a DDT. Del Rio goes for a cover but Show tosses him out of the ring at two. Del Rio charges Show and jumps at him and Show hits a knock out punch from out of nowhere and gets the victory!
Match Thoughts: These two just showed us how a big man is supposed to put on a relevant and entertaining contest. Show’s dominance through strength was showcased for the first half of the contest, while the ladder half focused more on Del Rio’s sound submission technique. This match was surprising good coming from these two guys. Just one man’s opinion, however.
After the match: Great to watch Show high fiving the little kids as he goes out. Punk comes out and smiles at Show before coming down to the ring. Punk grabs a microphone and gets in the ring. He sits next to Del Rio and tries to wake him up. He pours water over his face and wakes him up. Punk says he is going to ask him a yes or no question and he thinks Del Rio will say yes. He says he thinks that because he is going to twist him into a pretzel with the anaconda vice before asking it. Punk says he will not let go until he says yes to giving him his match at Survivor Series. Del Rio says yes, Punk has his match at Survivor Series! Glad we could confirm what WWE.com already told us on Tuesday last week. Punk says he’ll see Del Rio at Survivor Series.
Gonzo/Fozzie Backstage: Fozzie says these guys are impressive but Gonzo says he could be a WWE Champ if he put his mind to it. They are interrupted by Ziggler and Swagger who tie Gonzo’s arms around his head. Dolph says the same thing will happen to the other Muppets if they get involved later. Gonzo asks how they knew that he needed an adjustment.
Jack Swagger vs Santino Marella w/ Animal as guest timekeeper: Another big pop for Santino as he comes to the ring. They lock up and Swagger shoves Santino. Santino is hilarious again until Swagger hits a clothesline. Swagger smashes him on the back over and over and then hits him with multiple elbows. Swagger does pushups and taunts the crowd. Swagger stands him up and irish whips him to the corner and then charges him in the corner. On the second attempt Santino boots him in the face and then hits multiple punches until Swagger knocks him down. Santino with a hip toss and a two count pinfall attempt. Swagger hits the ankle lock and Santino reverses. Beaker gives the energy drink to Santino. Santino spits it in Swagger’s face and gets the schoolboy pinfall! This was a fun comedic fill for the night and the fans always love Santino!
Dolph Ziggler vs Zack Ryder: This match is non title, again. They lock up and Ziggler is whipped into the ropes and shoulder blocks Ryder down. Ryder hits two hip tosses and gets a two count. Ziggler then hits a dropkick. Ziggler kicks him in the head twice and then hits him in the face to the ground again. Ryder reverses a neckbreaker then hits a clothesline. He hits a high elbow then a dropkick from the middle rope. Ryder jumps onto Ziggler to the outside. Commercial break. Back from the break and Ziggler has Ryder in a ground submission. Ryder powers out but Dolph knocks him to the ground. Ziggler hits a jumping elbow to the back of Ryder but only gets a two count out of the pin attempt. Ziggler hits a neckbreaker. Did Cole just compare Vicky to Bobby Knight? Horrible. Ziggler runs at Ryder but gets caught and Ryder slingshots him into the turnbuckle. They exchange blows and Ryder drops Ziggler face-first into the match. Ryder goes on offense in the corner on Ziggler. Ryder charges the corner and kicks Dolph in the head but only gets a two count pin attempt. Ziggler reverses and charges Ryder who hits Ziggler in the face with a knee. Ryder gets an apparent three count but Ziggler’s foot was on the rope and the match continues. Ryder gets kicked by Ziggler after interference by Vicky. Ziggler fails Zig Zag and charges Ryder who hits the roughrider for the pinfall. Great win for Zack Ryder! FINALLY, a match where Zack Ryder doesn’t appear to be just lucky. Despite the limited moveset in the match, he actually had control of the contest and showed his ability to work a decent match. WWWYKI!
Before the main event: We get another replay of the mess last week between Triple H and Kevin Nash. It’s announced that Kevin Nash has been signed to a contract and will on RAW next week. Michael Cole stands up and says JR isn’t here tonight because of inflammatory bowel disease. Cole pulls out a diaper. Cole says the Michael Cole Challenge will be next week. No comment on this garbage. Statler and Walford make fun of Cole. It’d be great if these guys were on here every week to do this. Miss Piggy is shown running John Morrison’s stomach. He better not dis her or he might be fired. She asks him to dinner after the show. Morrison introduces her to Hornswoggle, who just happens to have a Miss Piggy tattoo on his ankle. He leans in to kiss her and she hits him in the crotch and runs off. Kermit checks on him but he’s fine. Rhodes comes along and puts the paper bag over Kermit’s head as he asks if they can talk about this. Who would’ve guessed? Waldorf and Statler crack some more jokes about Miz and Cena before their match.
Cena vs Miz: Cena gets heavy boos from the crowd. They lock up and Cena takes Miz down. He hits him in the back and kicks him the stomach before whipping him into the corner. Cena hits his fisherman suplex and then a dropkick. He gets a one count. Miz kicks Cena in the head to t he ground and then kicks him repeatedly. He goes to the ground and punches him over and over. Another kick to the head. Miz gets a two count. He locks on a neck submission as the crowd chants lets go Cena/Cena sucks. Cena powers out until Miz kicks him in the stomach and then kicks him on the ground again in the head. Miz charges from the corner for his big leaping clothesline. He goes up top and hits a double axe handle. Two count only. Miz continues the stomping and punching ground attack on Cena. Knee to the back of Cena and then a fist. He locks in a sleeper. Cena reverses and hits his doomsday move set. Miz hits a DDT when he counters Cena’s attempted AA. Miz gets loose from an STF attempt by Cena and goes for a pin after a backbreaker but only gets a two count. Cena blocks a skull crushing finale and goes for a pinfall after a dive in the corner and clothesline. Two count again. Cena goes up top but Miz joins him until Cena knocks him down. Cena hits the huge fame-asser(I miss Billy Gunn and no, it isn’t the same as the axe kick by Booker T) legdrop from the top and only gets a two count. Cena goes for another AA but gets blocked by a DDT from Miz yet again! Miz gets dropped to the outside when he charges at Cena. Cena and Miz battle near the barricade and Cena is grabbed by someone in a scream mask(RTruth maybe?). Miz takes advantage and brings Cena back to the ring but he hits an STF on Miz for the submission victory. The scream mask guy comes in the ring and gets hit with an AA by Cena. The mask comes off and it’s Truth. No surprise there; Miz really doesn’t have any other allies. Good match to finish out tonight’s show!
While this show didn’t feature wrestling to the extent that Smackdown did, we were definitely given some decent matches. Two things here surprised me more than anything: 1. The Muppets didn’t ruin RAW and 2. Big Show and Del Rio gave us a quality match! I loved watching Santino get a victory on Swagger and I hope they continue to use him this way every week. Ziggler’s match with Ryder showed us a small piece of what these two can do in the ring together. Interesting spot for Morrison to not have a match but still get a mention. That’s a Vince thing; i.e. wrestlemania backstage segments of talent not on the card. I think it’s safe to say that making RAW a supershow for the time being has been the right move. Storylines are progressing and Smackdown is becoming that much more interesting to watch because of the matches on RAW. Until next time, you’ve been ThunderStruck!
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