Last night’s episode of WWE RAW was, in a word, messy. While the preview seemed to tease at the very least a watchable show, what was delivered was a sloppy attempt to build the Extreme Rules card.
- Randy Orton def. Damien Sandow via RKO
- R-Truth def. Fandango via count-out
- Alberto Del Rio def. Dolph Ziggler via DQ
- The Shield def. Kofi Kingston and The Usos when Ambrose pins Kingston after the modified bulldog
- Antonio Cesaro def. Zack Ryder via Neutralizer
- Kaitlyn and the Funkadactyls defeat AJ Lee and The Bella Twins when Kaitlyn pins AJ following a spear.
- Sheamus def. Wade Barrett after the Brogue Kick. Sheamus is attacked by Mark Henry with a belt strap post match.
- Ryback def. Kane via Shellshock.
Now for the full recap:
RAW opens with WWE Champion John Cena heading to the ring to the usual mixed crowd reaction. Cena’s got a big grin on his face as he says that “you can sense the unrest in the WWE Universe.” Cena takes a stab at Daniel Bryan’s gimmick, noting that “YES!” competing in last week’s main event was maybe a mistake, but “NO!” he is not going to ditch out on Extreme Rules. Cena then decides to go on one of his classic pseudo-comedic tangents in which he notes that Ryback is ready to DTF, “do the Fandango,” amongst other highly unfunny and obviously forgettable things. Vickie Guerrero saves us all from the continuation of said tirade by heading down to the ring.
The Cougar-in-Chief of RAW points out to Cena that this isn’t a time to be joking around, as this isn’t an ordinary pay-per-view. This is an EXTREME pay-per-view. And seeing as how it is extreme, Vickie is giving John Cena the opportunity to name the stipulation for his WWE Championship match with Ryback. This of course brings Ryback to the ring. Cena ponders his options and calls for a few joke stipulations that would seemingly favor the challenger, such as a “whine off.” Cena then unleashes a spot on Ryback impression to throw out a few more jokes and basically say that Ryback can name his own stipulation.
Ryback takes a few moments to poke at Cena. Ryback notes that many members of the WWE Universe “would find it ironic that (Cena’s) Achilles’ heel is his actual Achilles heel,” but that his true Achilles heel is his “pride and ego.” Thankfully, he stops saying Achilles heel here and simply states that at Extreme Rules, he is choosing a stipulation which does not favor a one-legged man. Ryback chooses a Last Man Standing match.
After a brief recap of Randy Orton’s match with Damien Sandow on Smackdown last week, The Viper heads to the ring for a rematch with said Smackdown opponent. Sandow sings a song to the tune of Orton’s entrance theme, singing that Orton’s “tattoos are disgusting and the oil on him is heinous,” and generally taking shots at Randy Orton’s entire…. well, everything. Apparently messing with Orton’s theme is one of the better ways to fire him up, as Orton steamrolls Sandow in a fairly one-sided match which ends with a rare RKO that was NOT from “out of nowhere.” After the match, Orton is put out with a surprise KO Punch from Big Show, who was laying in wait for Orton at the entrance at the top of the ramp. The cameras didn’t catch the attack at first and it made for a spontaneous feeling to the moment that was a nice touch. Show stands tall over a fallen Apex Predator as the segment draws to a close.
Chris Jericho is up next, heading to the ring to a chorus of “Y2J” chants. Jericho notes that since “Fandumbo” is up next, he has decided to throw together a panel of judges to grade “Fan-dodge-durango’s” performance tonight. Jericho calls said judges out, and the judges turn out to be Tons of Funk, Tensai and Brodus Clay.
Fandango makes his entrance and grabs the mic to ask, “Christoper, who are you to judge me?” Fandango does not get his answer before his opponent, R-Truth, heads to the ring and the match gets underway. The pair have a mediocre match while the judges grade everyone’s spots, which eventually flusters Fandango enough to cause him to leave. So R-Truth picks up the win via count-out.
Backstage now with one half of the WWE Tag Team Champions, Daniel Bryan. Bryan says he’s fine from last week’s attack, and he’s out to prove himself tonight. He’s challenging “The Ryback” to a rematch from Smackdown. Ryback refuses the challenge. Ryback says that Bryan is half the man he is, and if he were healthy, he would destroy him. Kane then confronts Ryback and asks is he, too, is “half the man” that Ryback is. Ryback tells Kane he’s not the monster he used to be, and that Ryback is the only monster in WWE.
Back to the ring and Ricardo Rodriguez is out to introduce Alberto Del Rio. Del Rio is facing one of his opponents in the Triple Threat Ladder Match at Extreme Rules, World Heavyweight Champion Dolph Ziggler. Mid match, Swagger’s music hits and Swagger escorts the “Founding Father,” Zeb Colter, to ringside for commentary. Alberto Del Rio seems in line to win with a Cross Armbreaker, but AJ Lee distracts the referee and Big E Langston drags Del Rio through the bottom ropes and tosses him into Jack Swagger at commentary. The entire situation turns into a huge melee, as Swagger grabs a ladder from under the ring and attacks Ricardo Rodriguez with it, then Dolph Ziggler, then Alberto Del Rio. Swagger, ladder in hand, stands over his Extreme Rules opponents and looks like a legitimate beast in the process.
Backstage again, this time with Kaitlyn and The Funkadactyls. Kaitlyn gets a text from her “secret admirer” and The Funkadactyls ask if she knows who he is yet. Kaitlyn says no, but notes that because he said he “choo-choo-chooses” her in the text, he “totally gets my love for The Simpsons.” Natalya shows up and she is curious as well, thus she sends Khali undercover into the men’s locker room to find out who the secret admirer is. As the Divas part ways, Brie and Nikki Bella sneak on screen and high five, possibly a hint that this whole “secret admirer” situation is a prank on their part.
The Shield out next. The Hounds of Justice are taking on United States Champion Kofi Kingston and The Usos. Obviously The Shield win, but infuriatingly the team picks up the win when Dean Ambrose pins Kofi Kingston with his modified-bulldog finisher. Kingston was just beginning to develop some degree of momentum, then this. It makes no sense.
Antonio Cesaro is out to the ring next, yodel free. Cesaro is facing Zack Ryder, and he makes very quick work out of Long Island Iced Z. Cesaro gets the win with The Neutalizer, then grabs the mic. Cesaro says “I don’t always ask for a microphone, but when I do, I usually have something to say.” Cesaro notes that he puts the “W” in “WWE” and that no one does what he can do. To put it another way, Cesaro is basically saying that “Enough is enough, and it’s time for a change.”
Paul Heyman “live via satellite” next, and Heyman has footage he wants to share of the visit to WWE Headquarters that he and his client, Brock Lesnar, made earlier today. Heyman follows Lesnar through the front doors and all the way to the fourth floor and the office of Lesnar’s Extreme Rules opponent, Triple H. Brock Lesnar isn’t exactly there to leave a present on Triple H’s desk. Lesnar proceeds to demolish pretty much everything in the office that is breakable. Back live with Heyman now, who says that he knows a little bit about the word “extreme.” Triple H then interrupts the promo by showing up live in the arena.
Triple H, looking ridiculous with his leather jacket sleeves rolled up, grabs the stick and asks Heyman if he “ever opens his mouth without a bunch of crap falling out of it.” Triple H says that he’s a little bit extreme himself, reminding Heyman that he is “a founding father of a little group called Degeneration X.” Boring talk ensues and nothing much happens that is significant to the Extreme Rules match, the entire segment was filler.
Back to in-ring action next as The Bella Twins team with AJ Lee to take on Divas Champion Kaitlyn and The Funkadactyls. Very little “tagging” actually happens in the match, as Kaitlyn scores a quick win on AJ Lee via Spear when The Bellas refuse to accept a tag from AJ.
Mark Henry is on his way to the ring now. Henry notes that Sheamus is going to come out and beat his chest, do a pose, and play tough, but it’s all an act. Henry doesn’t have to act tough, he is tough. Henry taunts Sheamus, telling the Celtic Warrior that “if you got any pride in that body of yours, you’ll face me at Extreme Rules” Henry goes out on a limb by saying that their Extreme Rules match would be remembered “for the rest of existence.” This brings Sheamus to the ring, and Sheamus tells Henry that while he’s a relaxed guy, “when the bell rings, I’m all about business, and at Extreme Rules my business is Mark Henry.” Henry and Sheamus almost go toe-to-toe on the spot, but Sheamus’ scheduled match takes priority as Intercontinental Champion Wade Barrett heads to the ring to face The Great White.
In spite of the fact that Wade Barrett is Intercontinental Champion, one can imagine exactly how this match goes down. Sheamus picks up a quick, clean win a Brogue Kick to the Champ. After the match, Mark Henry rocks Sheamus with a belt, whipping Sheamus repeatedly across his back. Henry then follows this savage assault with a World’s Strongest Slam on the outside, a move which has caused other men to… well, mess themselves.
Finally it’s time for the main event, as Kane faces off against Ryback. Ryback and Kane have a short encounter, but at least it’s actually a wrestling match at the end of the show. Ryback beats Kane with a Shellshock by countering Kane’s top-rope clothesline, and immediately following the match The Shield show up. Daniel Bryan hits the ring to join both Ryback and the fallen Kane, but Ryback bolts, leaving it to be a 3 on 1 against Bryan. Cena’s music hits and John Cena rolls down to the ring to give aid as well. The odds are still in The Shield’s favor until Ryback hits the ring with a chair, attacking The Shield but then also attacking John Cena in a REALLY confusing end sequence. The show ends with Ryback standing over Cena, chair in hand.