The Oratory RAW Review Crew: 08/12/02
Honestly, I wasn't impressed until I'd had a good night's sleep on the matter. Then, when I sat just now to do my weekly recap, I realized something; RAW was damn good last night! Sure, sure, it was far from perfection, but even the bad segments (with the exception of the intergender tag match) weren't really that bad. I don't even mind that the Big Show is still lumbering around, because they're using him logically and building him back up to fill the only role he can do convincingly.
Jericho / Flair almost hit a stumbling block last night, because I feel that these two can build the match far better on the mic, with fleeting physical confrontations. But damn, the match was actually really hot and incredibly good, considering the tag partners involved. The pant-removing segment was awkward and bizarre, but Flair looks like he's genuinely having fun out there and giving his all. It just makes me tingly all over, thinking about what this Summerslam match could amount to, especially if they build it just a little further on the mic next week. Y2J had the right idea at the end of the segment, hacking out an excellent character promo. Now Flair just has to solidify himself as someone fans can get behind, and we're in serious business. Good show.
Man, I wish whoever was responsible for the fire burning underneath the crowd last night would become a regular member of the RAW tour. All the proof I need that an incredible audience can improve a show by 100%. The main event really wasn't anything that special up until the last couple minutes, but with such a volatile crowd I was hanging on every minute. On top of that, Booker was the top face last night. The man could do no wrong in Seattle's eyes. Were I still thinking the way I was last week, this is the part of the writeup where I'd complain about his being stuck in the tag scene. Last night, however, I realized something. They aren't holding him back, they're keeping him fresh in the minds of the audience. The tag titles, believe it or not, are still high profile. They can still main event a RAW. And with available slots in the main event, it's the best they can do with Booker until Brock wins the title. Maybe Lesnar / Booker is just around the corner? Perhaps...
Hitting a couple quick points, I was pleased as hell to see MiniDust smeared around the ring, and hope it's the last we've seen of him. Tommy Dreamer is breathing new life into the Hardcore division, and his matches with Richards are becoming mini classics. The finish to the Hardcore match last night may not have been as impressive as their previous meeting, but the bulk of the match itself was. Test vs. the Undertaker isn't that great of an idea, considering it'll likely kill all of the UnAmericans' credibility. But there's still that chance he WON'T no sell all of Christian and Lance's interference, that he WON'T pin Test cleanly inside of ten minutes, so I guess it's worth a shot. Right?
Thumbs up from me, man.
Score: 7.8 / 10