WWE Monday Night Raw results and observations (12/5/16): Don't follow Lana to room 704
The slogan for Austin, Texas is "Keep Austin Weird," which made it the perfect site for the sometimes-weird flagship television program of WWE, Raw.
Weird things tend to happen on WWE television and I'm sure fans could point out a few on this week's episode of Raw, but overall, I believe it was another solid effort from the red brand.
Before I got into detail, here are the full match results from the Frank Erwin Center at the University of Texas:
- Seth Rollins def. Big Show via count-out
- Jack Gallagher def. Ariya Daivari
- Kevin Owens def. Sami Zayn
- Rich Swann def. TJ Perkins
- Bayley def. Alicia Fox
- Mark Henry def. Titus O'Neil
- WWE United States championship – Roman Reigns def. Chris Jericho
- Sheamus & Cesaro vs. Karl Anderson & Luke Gallows ended in a no contest
Charlotte is not fond of her father
WWE made sure we remembered the last time Charlotte and her father Ric Flair were in the ring together.
The company replayed the moment Charlotte discarded her teary-eyed father three times during the show before the former Raw Women's champion summoned him to the ring to issue an apology about seven months after the fact.
The catalyst for Charlotte's apology was when Flair endorsed her arch nemesis Sasha Banks last week after the two engaged in yet another battle over the Raw Women's championship.
Charlotte talked about the pressure of being the daughter of a 16-time world champion and that all she ever wanted was to receive his seal of approval. After apologizing, they then hugged in the middle of the ring.
Then Charlotte stepped back and cocked back a slap Stephanie McMahon would have been proud of and let it fly right on her father's face. The slap knocked Flair back into a corner and made him think he was back in the ring with Harley Race like it was the 1983 Starrcade.
Flair stood there with a shocked look on his face, as Charlotte exclaimed that she was his daughter, not Banks, which brought the champion out to fight Charlotte.
Charlotte was ready and fended off Banks and left her lying inside the ring.
All of this was yet another chapter in the story between Charlotte and Banks, which will supposedly culminate at Roadblock: End of the Line in a 30-minute ironman match for the Raw Women's championship.
I thought Charlotte did a very good during this segment and her father did a tremendous job of selling that slap. The only that was missing was his famous bump onto his face.
Banks got involved in this, but she was merely a bit player. This was all about Charlotte.
As for the upcoming match, I am very much looking forward to it. It will be the first time two women take part in an ironman match on WWE pay-per-view. Yes, I remember Banks' match with Bayley last year, but that wasn't on pay-per-view. That was a WWE Network special.
Whether this will actually be the conclusion or not will depend on the outcome of the match. If Charlotte's streak of pay-per-view victories continues, then it means Banks will eventually receive yet another rematch.
If Banks finds a way to end that streak, then it will finally mark the end to what has been a long, but entertaining rivalry between these two women.
Enzo Amore did not take Bell Biv Devoe's advice
Bell Biv Devoe once put out a song called Poison, which was a big hit at the time of its release and is still played at dance parties until this day. I dance every time I hear the song to be quite honest.
One of the lines in the song is a word of advice from the trio. It goes, "Never trust a big butt and a smile. That girl is poison."
Well, Amore did not follow that advice Monday, as he fell for Lana's smile and other various parts of her body and was lured right into a trap. Could you honestly blame him?
This all started when Amore overheard what sounded like a legitimate argument between Rusev and Lana, which ended with Lana giving her wedding ring back to her husband.
This prompted Amore to slide in and console Lana. This led to her inviting him to her hotel for a late-night rendezvous. Amore readily accepted while quoting R. Kelly. His mind was telling him, but his body, his body, was telling him yes.
While Amore was off preparing for his date, Rusev bumped into Big Cass and eventually challenged him to a match. Later in the night, Big Cass went to the ring in preparation to fight Rusev, but there was one problem: There was no Rusev.
We then cut to Amore, who was with Lana, dressed in only a bathrobe, in her hotel room. Amore's morals finally kicked in, as he told Lana that the scenario was a bad idea. It seemed like Amore had a conscious after all.
However, Lana insisted and even ordered Amore to take off his clothes. Amore reluctantly obliged. When Amore was down to his underwear, Lana then called him a fool and called for Rusev, who was none too happy to see Amore.
Rusev then beat the tar out of Amore while Big Cass could do nothing but stand in the ring and watch on the big screen in the arena.
I have said it before and I will say it again, I like when WWE breaks from the norm and does things outside of the arena. It shakes up what can often times be a very mundane formula and puts the characters in more real-life settings.
WWE doesn't have to do this all the time, but I like that it has done this more frequently lately.
I also thought that this was a creative way to add another chapter to this story. WWE actually did something that took some creative thought. It could have easily sent Rusev out to the ring to squash Amore again, but it didn't.
Instead, WWE came up with a creative scenario that presented something different while keeping the story going. Sure, everyone knew Amore was being led into a trap, but just because something is obvious doesn't mean it is bad.
I watch movies, especially horror flicks, where a character makes an obviously dumb decision that leads to their untimely death. It doesn't the make movie any less scary or enjoyable. Some people simply make dumb decisions.
I saw some people criticize the segment because it was overproduced and the placement of the cameras that documented all of this did not fit within the narrative structure.
While those are fair criticisms, those are mistakes WWE has made on countless occasions in the past, including during the beloved "Attitude Era."
Yes, WWE should have established the camera's place within the narrative structure a long, long time ago. People should either not acknowledge that a camera exists like Lucha Underground or make it known that a camera is present.
WWE has done the latter in the past, but has gotten far away from that over the years. I honestly don't know why.
But if you're going to use that against this segment, use it against about 99 percent of WWE's segments from the past 20 years, including the good ones.
Did people complain about the camera when Booker T and Steve Austin had their legendary fight in a grocery store back in 2002? Heck no. We all just enjoyed a very entertaining segment between a pair of future WWE Hall of Famers.
If someone were to nitpick to that level, they would have wondered why a camera was even with Booker T while he was eating Lucky Charms out of the box with his bare hands.
I'm all for analyzing and critiquing as I do those things on a weekly basis on this blog, but let's not do that just for the sake of doing it.
How about we enjoy WWE doing something good for once? WWE doesn't always present entertaining segments on its television shows, so let's enjoy the ones the company actually gets right.
Was this good? I think it was. I thought Amore shined despite looking quite foolish. I also thought the segment helped Rusev look menacing again.
Owens-Jericho friendship continues to sour
Despite Owens getting Jericho a trio of gifts, their friendship is still on the rocks.
Owens' gifts to Jericho were putting Rollins in a match with Big Show, which backfired after Big Show choke slammed Owens; a United States championship match against Reigns, which also backfired because Jericho lost; and a match against Rollins at Roadblock: End of the Line.
That last gift hasn't backfired just yet.
Jericho was ice cold in his reception of Owens this week and it may get even colder after Owens interfered in his match with Reigns against his orders.
I don't know why we're all supposed to take great pleasure in seeing a friendship disintegrate right before our very eyes, but that's what we're all supposed to do when it comes to Owens and Jericho.
New Day to defend tag titles next week
Cesaro and Sheamus faced Anderson and Gallows Monday night with the winners getting a shot at The New Day and the Raw Tag Team titles next week.
The match ended in a no-contest, which meant nobody won. By WWE's logic that means they both get a title shot next week against The New Day.
While this match on the surface isn't all that significant, it does carry a lot of historical weight for The New Day, as it is the trio's final hurdle to breaking Demolition's record for the longest tag title reign in WWE history.