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    Wednesday, October 11, 2017

    The Smark Henry RAW Report (10/9/17): Reunited And It Feels So Good

    We had a nail-biting cliffhanger on the last episode of RAW with a Shield tease to close the show. They didn’t make it official by doing the signature pose, but we all knew we were getting there. For this week, it was clear that the one thing to really look out for was if they were finally going to do it, or if they were going to create suspense and tease the world even further.

    The show started with a bang, going straight into the Shield reunion without even teasing it. It was there, it was happening—and it was confirmed immediately when Roman Reigns came out wearing Shield merchandise. I mean, right away?! WWE ain’t playing, you guys—they saw that reuniting the faction had received nothing but praise and so now they’re going to milk the shit out of people’s wallets with it. Yeah, wait, hold on, let me just proceed to Checkout.

    Seriously speaking, though, I’m a little disappointed this didn’t go the same route Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose’s reunion did; they should’ve spread the storyline a lot longer. Ambrose took forever to trust Rollins which made for a very suspenseful and relatable story, but I guess the latter already proved himself enough for Reigns to go straight for it without questioning it.

    Reigns is then automatically perceived as a good and trustworthy guy with this babyface booking. It didn’t take much convincing for him to be saved by his old brothers. You know what else didn’t take much convincing? For fans to stand behind Reigns and actually cheer for him. How is it that just a few weeks ago, I swore on my cat that I was never going to cheer for Reigns, and now I squeal when I see him with Rollins and Ambrose? What kind of sorcery is this?

    Albeit an amazing mark-out moment for anybody, I admittedly feel that this entire reunion came at the wrong time. I mean, where was Reigns when people were first going nuts over Rollins and Ambrose? Sure, he was after the Universal Title—but that makes you a tad late to the party, dude. They kept saying that was a Shield reunion but it felt really lacking without Reigns! Now that the actual thing is here, it’s kind of a shame that Reigns took this long to be included in the mix and I believe it would’ve made a bigger impact back then.

    Braun Strowman was also an addition to the team of The Miz, Sheamus and Cesaro after he destroyed Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose a couple of weeks ago. It also makes extra sense because of the history with Roman Reigns. The Shield is now outnumbered though, which makes for great suspense in the upcoming pay-per-view, I suppose.

    Asuka makes her main roster debut at TLC, and I’m not too sure why they didn’t just keep it a surprise. They tried to hype it up with a Fatal 5-Way Elimination match this week to determine who gets to face the record-holding Superstar at the next pay-per-view, but the announcers themselves didn’t even realize it was an elimination match until the first fall—that’s how random and probably last-minute this whole thing was. At first, I thought they’d go for either Bayley or Sasha Banks to make her debut challenging and meaningful… but I guess not. Emma surprisingly won the opportunity, and I mean, cool, but, we all know what that means—Emma is now the chosen jobber for Asuka to destroy upon her arrival. So don’t get too excited, guys: this whole thing is actually pretty darn sad.

    The Cruiserweight division, despite having their very own weekly show, main evented RAW for the third time in a row. Insane. We also got a title change! Kalisto picked up an unexpected win against Enzo Amore, and so I guess this weird yet effective chapter with Enzo is probably soon coming to an end. I wonder if the Cruiserweights can keep up that main event status now that Enzo isn’t champion anymore. If not, then Enzo has ultimately proven the point he’s been insisting on for weeks. Yikes.

    Enzo Amore and Kalisto main evented Monday Night RAW and I can’t believe I just typed that out. It’s safe to say they were going nowhere as part of the heavyweights/regular roster, and adding them to the purple brand did them good as much as it did the entire division good. I know many casuals look down upon the Cruiserweights, but WWE has lately proven that one elaborated and intriguing story is all it takes to draw attention to any Superstar from any division.

    Being added into the Cruiserweight division also did wonders for Neville, who has arguably been their best champion yet. Rumors are floating around that he allegedly walked out on the show and quit WWE altogether because of his frustrations on his booking and Enzo’s reign. I hope this isn’t true because I never thought Neville was in a bad spot even after losing to Enzo. He was made the voice of the division at some point, and so 205 Live—and WWE, as a whole—would suffer a tragic loss if he really did decide to request for his release.

    We see more of Sister Abigail, who is obviously played by Bray Wyatt himself. They did this trick with his voice that made it sound like Sister Abigail was talking along with him, with some creepy visual effects that made the entire thing look like a horror movie. This segment could easily give children (and me) some pretty horrible nightmares.

    It’s nice to see Wyatt step up on the creepiness factor. I was never really afraid of him before because I always thought his segments were a little lame—but this feud with Finn Bálor definitely takes the cake.

    This episode of RAW mostly focused on the Shield’s reunion and I’m not complaining. We went back and forth on this storyline throughout the show and there wasn’t a minute where the commentators didn’t mention it. The episode had its moments, but also had some forgettable matches. I grade it a B+!

    Quick Hitters:
    • Bayley hitting Sasha Banks with a forearm, ever-so-low-key hinting a potential feud in the future. Yes, more of these, please.
    • The Alexa Bliss and Mickie James feud is the storyline we never thought we needed. I love these one-on-one bouts filled with drama as it spices up title matches on pay-per-views. It’s nice to have an actual reason for two people to have a match against each other!
    • My entire body felt a little numb after seeing that Salida Del Sol from the top rope by Kalisto. Don’t you care about your spine, man?!

    Photos by WWE
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    Item Reviewed: The Smark Henry RAW Report (10/9/17): Reunited And It Feels So Good Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Unknown
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