Survivor Series and Raw: An Ugly Roadblock for WWE
Roman Reigns defied the odds and had the WWE World Heavyweight Title in his hands. And just like that, it was taken away from him. Not only did he lose at Survivor Series, but so did every single wrestling fan. Survivor Series is supposed to be a game-changing PPV, but instead it was a huge step back for the company. Are you surprised? You shouldn’t be.
With Vince in charge, you knew it was going to be his way or the highway. This past Monday’s Raw was better than expected, but still disappointing. Do I sound bitter? I probably am, and for good reason. It will be clear why by the end.
First of all, Survivor Series was lackluster at best, and that’s being kind. The 5-on-5 Survivor Series match that had no previously announced participants was a joke. The New Day, the best thing in WWE right now could not even save this match. Not even Xavier Woods’ hair could help. Ok, maybe it did a little bit. When Big E got eliminated, the other two members of The New Day left Mr. Money in the Bank Sheamus all alone. The man who was forced to make an awkward joke before the match started was left alone, and the announcers teased a big comeback. Instead, we got at least 10 minutes of filler, with Sheamus finally being pinned, because the man with the briefcase should always look weak right? I’ll get back to him later.
Speaking of The New Day, please don’t ever change. The New Day’s “First Anniversary Country Music Jamboree and WWE Tag Team Championship Open Challenge” on Raw just proved how awesome they are. This piece needed some fluff, so thank you New Day for being you.
The women’s title picture is starting to unravel. The match between Charlotte and Paige on Sunday was more competitive than previous “divas” matches, even if that’s not saying a lot. These two did well, but nothing added up like it was supposed to. This match was hyped up as an aggressive payback situation, and the first few minutes were used on rest holds. I guess WWE also wants us to forget they brought up Charlotte’s dead brother Reid because that wasn’t discussed in the hype video or by the announcers. It was also quickly disregarded on this Monday’s Raw. If I’m not mistaken, that was the catalyst for the feud from last Monday’s Raw. Their match the next night was better (and what fans should have gotten on Sunday), but now plans have changed. This feud must continue, but how much momentum do they have left, if any?
Celebrating the 25th anniversary of The Undertaker, WWE went all out to give him a more memorable entrance than we are used to. On the screen, they showed pictures of all the incarnations of The Deadman through the years. That was the only cool part as the brothers destroyed The Wyatt family, again. Let me first say, I respect The Undertaker and all that he has done in his career. Once again, Bray, who should be doing better, jobbed out to The Undertaker, thus ending another disappointing program for him. The match was a basic sequence of nostalgia which was great for Kane and The Undertaker. The next night, however, The Wyatts came out and destroyed The Dudley Boyz, acting like nothing happened. How many times is Bray Wyatt going to be treated like a monster, when it’s inevitable the company will knock him down?
Onto the Survior Series, the main event. I liked what Dean Ambrose and Roman tried to do. The story was perfect, but the execution wasn’t. The match felt rushed, and the ending was anticlimactic. No big sequence, just a simple spear to end it. What happened after was classic WWE. Reigns speared Triple H, and Sheamus cashed in his Money in the Bank contract. A few minutes later, Sheamus was once again world champion.
Thanks to Sasha Banks, I know how to express my feelings about WWE’s decision making:
This is a classic story of WWE going back to the basics. Sheamus, who besides losing multiple matches for weeks now, looked like a fool during the tag match, and now we have him as the world champion. He has reached X-Pac / Big Show heat; nobody wants to see him, especially as champion.
When Rollins got injured, there were opportunities for WWE to go outside the box, especially with all of the other top stars injured. Instead, Vince went back to the norm, because what he wants goes, and he does what he thinks we want. What he thinks is best for business is sometimes the complete opposite. This PPV was a huge letdown and showed everything wrong with the company. No wonder ratings have been down for quite some time, because of nonsense like this.
**Speaking of ratings, it is being reported that Monday’s Raw had 2.967 million viewers and a 0.99 rating in the 18 – 49 demographic. The viewership is the lowest for a non-holiday themed Raw since 1997, while the demo rating dropped below a 1.0 for the first time in years. The numbers were down 10% and 18% from last week’s 3.293 million and 1.21. That is a dangerous fall for the company, who will only lose more upset viewers as weeks go on.**
The next few months should be a huge trial for WWE. Testing the patience of fans is never a good thing, and we’ll see how much they can take before turning on the company. The ball is in WWE’s court now, it’s time to roll with it. I’ll be hoping, but anticipating disappointment. Just a wrestling fans intuition.
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