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Roman Reigns is one of the most dramatic, divisive and discussed WWE performers in history. The company makes desperate play after desperate play to make him your favourite graps guy – with limited success. How do they do it? What do they do?
I’m Tom Colohue and this is the Monday Night Reigns-o-Meter.
Hey, remember back when Roman Reigns drugged Stephanie McMahon? Well, back when Roman Reigns drugged two drinks and Vickie Guerrero accidentally drugged Stephania McMahon? Those were the days. He was still a good guy then for, you know, reasons.
More importantly, he didn’t get arrested for doing that, despite appearing on live and recording TV actively drugging someone. This week things got a bit weird in that regard.
We open to the arrival of faction Strowman, a combination which ensures that we won’t get to see that promising Strowman vs McIntyre feud that seemed so exciting only a few weeks ago. Strowman is a recent WWE fan, given that he believes that nobody can get in or out of the cell. I mean, Shane McMahon and Kevin Owens didn’t go to war on top of one last year or anything, nope. Chris Jericho didn’t run in right through the door the year before. Nope.
And so the dynamic is clear as ever. Ziggler is the mouth piece, Strowman is the strong man. McIntyre is the…extra strong man? The spare guy? The backup muscle? Bray Wyatt must be spinning in his grave.
The Shield enter, for some reason having to have a quick gauntlet through an initial all of opposition. No Way Jose, making his first appearance in months, gets almost two seconds of air time. Renee Young on commentary does her best impression of someone whose husband isn’t getting the crap kicked out of him right in front of her. Or she just doesn’t care all that much about his health; he sure doesn’t.
Rollins, in standard Seth Rollins fashion, keeps slipping through the meaty wall to get involved in the fight. As such, despite the fact that we’re supposed to be believing in The Shield, everyone in the crowd is chanting Burn It Down instead. Finn Balor, briefly mesmerised by Seth’s amazing facial hair, completely lets his man slip and everything goes backstage ready for replays.
Also, as an aside, Drew McIntyre has got a really raw deal here but he’s making the most of it. The sight of him, face contorted with rage and trying desperately to hold on to the screens around him with several arms around his neck, is unquestionably the biggest image of the segment.
Oh, and for some reason The Shield are arrested. Corbin is trying to explain but his roster is far too eager to fight to let him get on with it. I’m guessing it wasn’t Roman’s fault. Ambrose probably did something. Roman’s a saint.
Which naturally leads to the next segment in which Liv Morgan sits on a rope looking cute. That’s how you read a mood WWE, well done. Bray Wyatt must be spinning in his grave.
Over the course of the night, once the replays were accounted for, we didn’t really hear much about Roman. Our favourite was absent from his usual four or five segments of the show. While Ziggler and McIntyre won titles and Strowman went around talking about it being his yard, Roman Reigns was curiously silent. There was a reason for this though, as Roman Reigns obviously stepped aside to let The Undertaker borrow his yard for the night. Lovely guy, Roman. Sharing is caring.
Finally, well into the overflow and with only five minutes to go, The Shield return. Braun Strowman having heeled himself up good and proper against popular smiling face guy Finn Balor, Dean Ambrose backs his ambulance up into the arena ready to spar with Brock Lesnar.
Wait, not that one.
Braun Strowman backs his ambulance up to get revenge on Kane and The Miz.
Steve Austin drives his ambulance into the arena ready to rejoin Vince McMahon in the Royal Rumble.
Or, you know, it’s The Shield. Curiously, with Dean Ambrose front and centre.
And then there was Owens. Chaos suits this storyline. For a moment we had the wonder of the Authors of Pain, led not by their new manager but instead by Drew Gulak, demolishing Roman Reigns. Ziggler was with Rollins, throwing him through a window for the nastiest bump of the night and meanwhile McIntyre simply stood on Ambrose right in front of his wife. Though they didn’t both mentioning that of course and neither did she.
And what of our hero? Where was Roman for the grand finale? He was back with Braun Strowman and the AOP; held by the throat and helpless. Strowman, with brand new friends, looks absolutely dominant. Bray Wyatt must be spinning in his grave.
So who do The Shield have on their side? Can the Raw locker room reunite before Survivor Series? Is Braun Strowman heel enough now?
Tune in next week. Same Roman time. Same Roman place.
– Braun Strowman
– Dolph Ziggler
– Drew McIntyre
– The Authors Of Pain
– Drew Gulak
– Literally Everybody
Did Roman Reigns beat the odds?
I miss Bray Wyatt.
NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S COLUMN: MONDAY NIGHT REIGNS-O-METER #75: Tracking Roman Reigns’s ability to beat the odds and come out on top