MITCHELL'S TAKE MOJO MITCHELL: Super-Sized Raw & Smackdown Stream of Legitimate, Young & Old, Wrong Stooges, AAA, An Old Chicken, And Yes, That's Right, the Longest Mojo Ever!
Apr 11, 2012 - 2:25:19 PM
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By Bruce Mitchell, PWTorch columnist
Super-Sized Mojo Mitchell's Raw And Smackdown Legitimate Stream of Young and Old, The Wrong Stooges, Bloody Chiclets, AAA (Anti-Alcoholics Anonymous), An Old Chicken, Yes, That's Right, It's Longest Mojo Ever! Ever, Ever!
We start Raw with the announcement that the Stooges are here. I immediately lose interest when I don't see Iggy in the promo.
The Three (More) Stooges have a new movie coming out. I thought those guys were dead, or at least in black and white.
Raw and Smackdown General Manager John Laurinaitis (with Neon Sign #1 David Otunga) are out to introduce the "new face of the WWE, a dominant ruthless legitimate athlete, and a champion of champions. Lesnar will bring legitimacy back to the WWE."
Announcer Michael Cole introduces a quick re-cap of Brock Lesnar's career, giving the key line that Lesnar left WWE to conquer UFC and became the UFC Heavyweight Champion.
After the video, Lesnar plasters an unconvincing smile on his face and thanks Laurinaitis for bringing "legitimacy back to the WWE."
I know we crossed this rubicon years ago, but God forbid Brock Lesnar comes back to crush his opponents for his own benefit. Instead, he's immediately linked to a third-rate mid-card copy of the Mr. McMahon character, a guy whose heel heat is supposed to come from being a corporate buzz-kill. Which is the better, more money-drawing narrative – how a shady corporate management-type manipulates talent to his own ends or how two talents fight it out to see who is better and management just makes sure the playing field where they decide their issues has, what's that word, legitimacy?
If you want the real answer, look to the NFL or the NBA or UFC. If you see a lot of Roger Goodell or David Stern or Dana White, usually things are not going well for their concern. If you see the Super Bowl or the NBA Finals or George St. Pierre defending his title in Canada you see money, and lots of it.
If the term "legitimacy" is thrown around to demonstrate to the devout in the WWE Universe™ that UFC is no fun because they care about "legitimacy" like that fuddy-duddy John Laurinaitis, and WWE is all about fun, well…
If the term "legitimacy" is thrown around so that John Cena can prove his physical legitimacy in the face of Brock Lesnar, well, that's worth doing.
Laurinaitis announces Lesnar will face John Cena at Not-WrestleMania later this month.
WWE should keep Lesnar away from as much of the phoney-baloney aspects of their show as they can, and John Laurinaitis, who no one over eight believes is running the show, is as phony-baloney as it gets.
Lesnar gets one half-assed line out when John Cena's music hits. Let the smirkathon begin.
Cena lays out in the corner to do his usual check of the crowd's temperature. He walks up to Lesnar all friendly-like, then slaps him hard across the face.
Lesnar immediately takes him down and starts punching as the rings fills up with officials and lesser Superstars to separate them. Cena and Lesnar break away from everyone holding them back in a tremendously well-produced scene.
Somewhere in there Lesnar got in a hard shot on Cena, leaving him with a bloody mouth.
Some folks don't like Cena smiling during big angles like this, but I like it here. It's like a bar fight where the guy gets a hard shot from the guy with the reputation, and realizes he can take it after all.
WWE did a tremendous job producing this brawl, with shots from above that gave it an epic feel.
The announcement of the Lesnar-Cena match should have come organically from Cena or both demanding it after this brawl, not as something to make Laurinaitis seem in charge.
Laurinaitis blames Teddy Long "for not containing John Cena." Mid-card.
Eve wants to talk to Laurinaitis, who offers her a one-on-one meeting back in Stamford. She tells him he has her number and he promises to call her so they can trade favors, you know how women like that are.
Brodus Clay comes out with his dancers and Santino Morella. No sign of the big-butted mamas from WrestleMania, thank God.
Santino has the rhythm down better than Clay, but not better than his dancers.
Vickie Guerrero does her "Excuse me" deal to introduce Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler, who face Clay and Marella. It's the first time we've seen Clay sell since he became a Funkasaurus. They need to limit that.
Santino takes a major beating to set up Clay cleaning house and getting the pin. It's pretty much how both Santino Marella and Brodus Clay should be used.
Laurinaitis is brow-beating poor Teddy again. Where's John Cena? Cena throws around the word "legitimacy" again. He says the actor who didn't want to get his money-maker hit just left. He likes to hit and be hit. He wants a match tonight.
Laurinaitis gives him one with David Otunga and tells Long he will be out there for the match.
Santino is looking for the Three Stooges. You knew that was coming. Kane is watching. Santino asks him, gets no response, then power-walks out-of-there.
R-Truth faces Cody Rhodes. Big Show interrupts the match the same way Rhodes used to do his with those embarrassing WrestleMania Moments. Show shows Rhodes losing last week when Show interrupted that match, too. Truth immediately pins Rhodes again.
How that's more embarrassing than Rhodes wrestling in his cute little briefs is beyond me.
Santino finds the Stooges falling out of a big wooden box. They do some traditional Stooges schtick. I like the Mo-bra. Mo isn't bad, neither is Will Sasso, but Sean Hayes's New York accent keeps slipping.
Lord Tensai beats up Yoshi Tatsu, who rightfully wonders why WWE makes him act like a child when the big Caucasian gets to play a Japanese bad-ass. Tensai squashes Tatsu so flat referee Charles Robinson calls it off before the pin.
Tensai gives him another slam for good measure, then locks on the Claw. I like the Claw. I don't know if I like Lord Tensai.
C.M. Punk is in the ring, and he doesn't look happy. He explains he never wanted to tell his personal reason for living a straight-edge life. The first one is, he doesn't think it's anyone's business.
That, I like.
He decided he would make it to the top of WWE by being the best in the world.
Chris Jericho decided to steal his privacy to get inside his head. It doesn't work. He made Jericho tap out at WrestleMania. Jericho takes it one step too far. Jericho broke that bottle over his head.
"I smell exactly like my father did."
Jericho appears on the big screen – Punk's Alcoholics Anonymous Anti-Sponsor. He accuses Punk of being drunk now, of being C.M. Drunk. (You knew that one was coming.)
"The only thing you broke last week was a bottle. I'm coming after you from this dark place. This is about me kicking your ass. "
You'll notice Punk never denied being drunk.
Punk defends the WWE Title against Mark Henry again. Henry still knocks Dark Punk on his ass. Dark Punk then snatches up a TV monitor and drops it on Henry's head. Jericho stops his next murder attempt by appearing on the ramp. Henry gets up and crushes Punk from behind. Jericho carries a six-pack to the ring and is about to pour a beer on him when Punk makes a brief comeback. Jericho stops it with a Codebreaker, then maliciously pours all six beers on Punk. Jericho then goes outside the ring to hoist the WWE Title up.
It's great heel stuff, but it's so much nastier, for back of a better word, than anything else WWE promotes that you can't help but wonder how even the more casual parent who takes their kids to Raw feels about it.
Poor Zack Ryder faces Alberto Del Rio (with Ricardo Rodriguez). Ryder hits a Broski Boot, but ends up tapping out anyway. Figures.
The Three Stooges are in the ring. You know, years ago they used to talk about Bobby the Brain Heenan playing Mo in the remake. Hey, Captain Lou Albano played Mario of the Mario Brothers. Sasso (who did some stuff with WCW years ago) comes out dressed as Hulk Hogan and does Hogan plugging their movie. This isn't good. Kane, of course, comes out to chokeslam Sasso/Hogan.
On the other hand the crowd did chant "You!" before the Hulkster took his fall.
Mark Henry explains that since he's beaten C.M. Punk by technicalities the last two weeks John Laurinaitis is giving him a No Disqualification match for the title next week. He promises he'll win the title.
WWE could be attempting to demonstrate that Punk can beat (and have credible matches) with guys Henry's size, you know, like Brock Lesnar, or they could be getting a World Title on Henry while Punk has his personal grudge with Chris Jericho.
Brock, are you proud to be in WWE?
Lesnar puts just enough effort into reading the words right in front of him that we can hear them clearly.
WWE shows a tremendous video re-capping Triple H and Undertaker's Hell in a Cell match through the eyes of the Superstars watching. This is what they should do about twice a year for the biggest matches, and not just the ones that end an era.
Speaking of UFC, how come none of their tough-guy fighters pose with oil over their bodies like David Otunga does? Scared?
John Cena faces David Otunga. Otunga gets in a lot more offense than usual, but Cena still beats him. Lesnar sneaks in from behind and kicks Cena in the nuts, then F-5s him for the re-run.
Dumb ol' Cena.
They should have stuck with the pull-apart.
And now we have a blast from the past (no, it's not the Mojo) it's Super Smackdown Live!
The Piper's Pit tonight is with Daniel Bryan.
Smackdown starts with Mean Gene Okerlund, who will interview Sheamus, "one of my favorites." I always liked when Gene did that, particularly since it usually meant he'd never heard of him.
Sheamus says by attacking the referee last week, he broke the "code of honor" everyone in the back lives by. Gee, can't the little promotions have anything? Sheamus continues to apologize to the point I thought he was going to say "but I never said I wouldn't talk about your sister."
Smackdown GM John Laurinaitis comes out and makes him apologize to everyone all over again. How humiliating. I can think of one WWE Irishman who would never apologize.
John Laurinaitis tells Sheamus he's on permanent probation and if he ever touches a referee he'll be fired and "face the largest fine in WWE history - $500,000." What was that word from last night – legitimacy?
Laurinaitis then tells Sheamus tonight he will face C.M. Punk and Alberto Del Rio and his partner will be…
Mean Gene Okerlund. That's what Okerlund gets for hanging around the ring. From the Vince Russo School of Anyone Can Be a Wrestler.
The phone rings. It's former WCW color announcer Mark Madden, pointing out that he was Mean Gene's last in-ring opponent and "I sold my ass off for him."
Cowboy Bob Orton, Jr. wishes his son Randy the best in his match tonight.
The announcers review Randy Orton's Even Steven win on Smackdown over Kane.
Randy Orton faces Mark Henry. Henry beats up Orton while Michael Cole and Booker T ignore the match to argue about whether or not C.M. Punk got himself deliberately disqualified on Raw last night.
"You know Cole, I had a dream you died."
Anyways, Orton throws Henry out of the ring and then fire blows out of the ringpost. Kane cuts a promo on him from backstage. The camera pans down, and Cowboy Bob is lying at his feet.
Randy runs to the back to find his father, and finds him, only to get ambushed by Kane from behind with a metal bar. "I'm a sucker for family reunions," Kane says, with both Ortons out in front of him.
Hey, where's Berry Orton these days?
Tony Atlas, Ted DiBiase, Pat Patterson, and Hillbilly Jim look forward to "a squash match."
Benny Camer faces Ryback. Who doesn't love watching a big musclehead bully beat up a scrawny little punk? Be a Star!
Heath Slater tells Tyson Kidd that Jimmy Hart wants to help them with their match with the Usos tonight. Hart, looking like someone dipped him in lacquer, jumps out and starts cackling out that Jimmy Hart talk.
Mick Foley comes out to commentate on the match between Heath Slater & Tyson Kidd (with Jimmy Hart) and Jimmy & Jey, The Usos. This turns into another debate about Jim Ross. Hart spends the whole time yelling through his megaphone at the announcers.
Foley weirdly reminisces about the Usos as children crying in the back after their father Rikishi got busted open one night. Well, he knows all about putting his children through that.
Foley has enough of Hart, gets Mr. Socko out, and stuffs it down Hart's throat.
Roddy Piper is out for his Piper's Pit with Daniel Bryan. As Daniel Bryan stands next to Piper, I reflect on the fact that, 28 years ago, when Roddy Piper (a jacked Piper at that) came to the WWF, Vince McMahon thought he was too small to be a main-event wrestler and made him the manager of Paul "Mr. Wonderful" Orndorff and "Dr. D" David Schultz.
Piper talks slowly and is proud of himself for getting through all the numbers in his lines (73,000 28, 18 seconds). He mocks Bryan (very carefully) about losing at WresleMania in 18 seconds.
Bryan brags about John Laurinaitis giving his well-deserved two-out-of-three-falls re-match for Sheamus's World Title at the not-WrestleMania pay-per-view.
Piper brings out poor A.J., who of course still loves Daniel Bryan. Piper tries to talk her out of her love, but Bryan tells her if she really loves him, she'll leave the ring right now.
Piper lectures Bryan on how to treat women (the three No's) and Bryan slaps him in the face.
Bryan backs up the ramp, yelling, "Yes! Yes! Yes!"
I give the segment one Yes!
Some random Divas & the Great Khali beat the Bella Twins & Drew McIntyre, then May Young kisses Khali. As Booker T puts it, "An old chicken makes good soup."
Damien Sandow is one of those pointy-headed intellectuals who doesn't appreciate social media. What that has to do with wrestling I have no idea, but then I'm not a pointy-headed intellectual.
Gene Okerlund wonders whether Sheamus has a plan up his sleeve. Sheamus doesn't like their chances, but he doesn't want Laurinaitis to see him sweat. No, really.
They're going to have to give Sheamus material more suited to him. Light comedy isn't his forte.
Heyyyy! USA! USA! Jim Duggan faces Hunico (with Camacho). Duggan calls down Sgt. Slaughter, then cracks Hunico in the side with his 2x4. Slaughter puts Camacho on the Cobra Clutch. We have our happy ending, or is it our little lesson?
Cody Rhodes is making a speech. Sure enough, it's just a prelude for the entrance of his father, the American Dream, Dusty Rhodes. Dusty tells Cody, "For God's sakes, put some pants on, son."
"Dad, you're embarrassing me. We can talk about this in the back."
Big Show appears on the ramp with his IC Title belt. He shows "the real Cody Rhodes" in another video. It's a "Dashing" Cody Rhodes clip. Show leaves. Cody leaves. Dusty dances to Common Man.
Well, that just sucked.
Alberto Del Rio (with Ricardo Rodriguez) & Daniel Bryan face Sheamus & Mean Gene Okerlund. Howard Finkel ring announces the latter team. Sheamus starts and Del Rio and Bryan stomp him.
Somehow, Gene Okerlund is tagged in. Rodriquez wants to beat him up.
The bagpipes hit. The WWE Legends make the save. Sheamus Brogue-kicks Bryan for the win. Cole is just obnoxious here. The Legends take turns hitting Rodriguez.
Cole goes in the ring, telling the Legends it's time to go back to the old-folks home. Pat Patterson punches him out.
Hey, isn't Vince McMahon older than everybody on this show? (Well, except one.)
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