The Oratory RAW Review Crew: 02/17/03
Much like several of my counterparts, I don't have a whole heapin' helpin' of thoughts in regards to this week's program. Yeah, like you haven't heard that from me in the past... only to scroll down and see I've written a dictionary or two anyway. Truth be told, though, I was largely indifferent to this week's show. Nothing stood out as particularly unholy or unbelievable. Hey, I've got a job to do, though, so I'll put on a tough face and brave my way through it just for you guys. Who loves ya?
RVD and Lance Storm have had a very good match or two in their past, but it just wasn't happening last night. They couldn't really connect in the ring, and wound up merely going through the motions, pushing out a somewhat disappointing match. I'm all for seeing both of these guys on the screen, as they've been consistently good, but maybe we oughtta hold off on any immediate singles rematch plans. I really enjoyed the finish of this one, as RVD almost took the loss cleanly but fought back and landed a beautiful five-star to nab the win. Even though I'm all about the way Regal and Storm have been built as credible heels, I can understand them losing a match or two in this manner. Both guys looked strong, and brass knuckles were in no way involved with the match's conclusion.
I'll agree with Corey on the subject of Victoria's music. Even though I hear it every time I flip past MTV, I still think it's a genuinely cool entrance song, and fits Vicki's character perfectly. Kudos for the WWE team, for snapping that little gem up before it hit American airwaves.
Speaking of which, Victoria has suddenly become a very solid character? I'll applaud the fact they didn't drop her like a bad habit when she was first struggling her way through promos, as she's now on the verge of a potentially huge program with Jazz. She really embodies her character, and Steven Richards is a great accessory to her package. What I'm not a very big fan of is Stevie's new tights. I can see those are supposed to be eyes around his lower abs, but why do we have to go the extra step, and allow his manhood to fill out the 'nose' of that hidden face? Yuck.
I would've killed the guy in the crowd who dressed up like Hogan last night, if he were sitting in front of me. Yeah, way to stand up every time the camera cuts anywhere near you... what a little bitch.
Jazz looked great again last night, if perhaps a step behind where she was last time. I was a bit disappointed we didn't get to see Jackie strapped into the STF, as she's legitimately one of my least favorite visuals in the world. All in all, I think this was our fourth straight week of very good women's wrestling, and I'm honestly intrigued to see where they take it from here. Jazz vs. Victoria should be a seriously great PPV faceoff, if they can keep Jazz from making a fool of herself on the mic. I think I'm still shooting liquids out of my nose, after unexpectedly snorting my way through the end of that segment. "Bwahhhhh! Ahhhh... wahhhh!" indeed, Jay.
Rodney Mack had an uninspiring match for his big debut, apart from his nasty botching of the finish. I'd much rather have seen D'Lo continuing his "oppressed black man" role than this... I mean, D'Lo has a lengthy history of being mysteriously forgotten in WWE. If there's anybody on the roster who has an honest reason to play that role, it was Brown. And now they've gone ahead and released him... whoopty shit. This angle doesn't mean as much to me as it did last week.
Jericho and Christian weren't near their usual level of kickass against HBK and Jeff Hardy last eve. It was cool to see the handcuffs again, and the sweet chin music into the steel chair was great stuff. Otherwise, I could've forgotten about it and moved on. GREAT bitter, post-match promo from the heels, though. I'd like to see more of that from these two, and less of the Edge & Christian throwback.
Big round of applause for Terri last night, for throwing on more clothes than I think she's ever worn in her entire life. Let's keep it that way.
The big man tag team match produced everything I could've expected of it, plus a little bit extra. Booker came off looking like gold again, and Steiner didn't look half bad either. I'm all about seeing Booker / Trips at the biggest event of them all, as they just need a tiny bit of a boost to really put their feud over the top. Not sure where they can take Scott Steiner from here, but I guess that's why I keep tuning in; to find out. I think he's far from outlived his usefulness, and I maintain that his signing was a good move.
Finally, we got Bischoff vs. JR. Let's see, what was it I said last week? Oh, yeah...
'Though he's one hell of an announcer, Ross is not a performer. He doesn't have the authority in his eyes that an Eric Bischoff, Vince or Shane McMahon does. Behind a microphone, JR is the voice of god... in front of a camera, he's a slug. Let's keep him doing what he does best...'
So, I guess, somewhere in there I was leading to a triumphant return to the squared circle for good ol' JR. I wouldn't have really minded if they'd done this at the top of the first hour or something, but using it to headline the last show before an important PPV is just asinine. I understand they're building Austin / Eric as RAW's #1 match at No Way Out, and need to build it without giving away Austin's return. This segment did a good job of satisfying those requirements, but it shouldn't have been the fucking main event. The day they change the name on the marquee to 'WWE presents two non-wrestlers drinking beer and pretending to hit each other and break things' is the day I'll quit complaining about stuff like this. It's also the day I'll quit tuning in.
An unremarkable show, leading us in to a PPV that looks really good. That's a bad taste I've got in my mouth, and it's all thanks to our buddies on RAW. There was some good, but not quite as much as the bad.
Score: 4.65 / 10