6 Ups And 4 Downs From Last Night's WWE Raw (Dec 18)

Two big announcements about Royal Rumble, but little else of consequence.

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Upon further reflection, it’s really tough to nail down Monday night’s episode of WWE Raw. Was it good? Was it bad?

Well, it didn’t have any actively bad segments or anything that would cause you to turn off the television, but is that enough to qualify it as a good episode? At the same time, there were only a handful of notable positive steps forward, leaving the show in a state of limbo.

We got two really notable developments for Raw, including a first for female competitors. One guess who got to make that announcement. We saw an NXT mainstay make his long-awaited WWE debut alongside a former tag team partner. We also saw a tag team of “top guys” make their return to the roster.

On the other hand, we saw two six-person tag matches end somewhat strangely rather than getting some quality wrestling. We saw bland cruiserweight action. We saw Nia Jax gush over Enzo Amore again. And we saw something that could be described as ultimately skippable.

Even with positive marks, it’s tough to call this a good episode. Just know that it wasn’t actively bad, but it won’t blow you away either.

With that said, let’s take a look at what Raw got right and what it got wrong. Let’s get to it…


4. Who’s In Charge?

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It’s understandable that Raw and SmackDown will take opportunities to needle the other brand over perceived difficulties, but Michael Cole waded into the deep end of the pool Monday and promptly started flailing.

During the opening to Raw, Cole referred to Sunday night’s Clash of Champions PPV and talked about the “mess on SmackDown” where they don’t know who’s in charge, but on Raw, everyone clearly knows who’s “firmly in charge:” GM Kurt Angle.

To quote a former GM: “Excuse me?”

Raw, the show where Commissioner Stephane McMahon randomly shows up and emasculates everyone not named Triple H? Stephanie was just on Raw three weeks ago strutting around. She returned to Raw after a seven-month hiatus to belittle Angle and threaten his job if he didn’t win at Survivor Series. She also has run off another GM during her tenure.

But yeah, compared to SmackDown, Raw is the picture of authority figure stability. Right.


Scott is a former journalist and longtime wrestling fan who was smart enough to abandon WCW during the Monday Night Wars the same time as the Radicalz. He fortunately became a fan in time for WrestleMania III and came back as a fan after a long high school hiatus before WM XIV. Monday nights in the Carlson household are reserved for viewing Raw -- for better or worse.