After last week's fantastic ending, this episode faltered a little with the whole NXT rookies invading. They made the rookies look too weak here -- and the WWE look too united. The opening segment was very strong with all of the rookies failing to apologise and Bret Hart firing Wade Barrett as a result. The way they handled the Bryan Daniel/Daniel Bryanson situation was fine with me -- though, if you looked at this as a coherent piece of writing, Bryanson feeling guilt over what happened last week wouldn't fit his character at all since he attacked Michael Cole numerous times and was the most vicious last week (or among the most vicious at least). But, it had to be done. Not his firing (which could be a work, but that doesn't look likely) -- a firing that just comes off as stupid pure and simple. Ah well.
The rest of the episode couldn't match that opening. Mostly mediocre to awful matches. Putting the US title back on the Miz seems odd, even if it's just a way to get another match booked for Sunday's Fatal 4-Way pay-per-view. The Jericho/Bourne match was fine for the three minutes it was given, but the finish was questionable. Why have Bourne kick out of the Codebreaker and not go anywhere with it?
The midshow Cena/NXT segment was kind of stupid. I didn't like the WWE guys who came out to fend off the NXT guys, partly because it's too soon for the NXT gang to be on the run. Partly because we're talking about an initial group that includes Santino. And, partly because it just makes me wonder why no one came out last week if what the NXT guys did was so disrespectful to the entire locker room. Wouldn't they have came charging out then?
The final match wasn't too bad. Not anything amazing, but a solid match. Was Chris Jericho on the ramp with the other Raw members? I didn't see him, but I could be blind. The shit with Bret Hart and the limo was kind of lame. A regular beatdown would have suited me fine.
Less convinced that the WWE knows what it's doing with the NXT angle, but still optimistic. Not an awful Raw, but not one that knocked me on my ass. Last minute Fatal 4-Way booking and typical short matches. The WWE's inability to book heel stables as dominant lately bothers me. That's how people get over: the heels dominate, the faces get their asses handed to them and eventually come back to win. While I don't follow CHIKARA too closely, its current Bruderschaft des Kruzes storyline is a lesson in doing that story correctly. No one cares if a weakass faction gets beaten. That's why Legacy failed and why the Straight Edge Society isn't taking off as much as it could be (CM Punk is crazy over, but the SES isn't much of a threat most of the time). Ah well. We'll see what happens on Sunday with this since that was the deadline Barrett gave at the end of the show.
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