Kester’s WWE Raw Rundown: Cm Punk continues to do the best work of his career, Brock Lesnar destroys the Miz, and The Shield get turned back
By Ryan Kester
I feel like I praise Punk almost too much, but the man is really doing some of the best work of his career. His heel persona is uncompromisingly despicable, and he is no longer putting his considerable mic skills to work pleasing online fans. Are online fans still eating up his act? Certainly, but Punk is doing enough to get even the most hardcore wrestling fan to give him heat live. It’s refreshing to see a heel genuinely try and play the role of the heel instead of the cool guy that that you’re supposed to boo but actually enjoys getting cheered.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, as long as John Cena is around, Punk will never be the biggest star in WWE as a babyface. Although he was similarly as good in that role as he is in his heel persona, WWE isn’t going to budge form milking their cash cow. That’s why it is so exciting to see Punk flourish as a heel, and do so with a traditional heel persona. He may never be a bigger star than Cena, but Punk is doing a grand job of filling the spot that Edge and Randy Orton played before him.
Once again, Lesnar did a great job in his role on Raw. He is being presented as an absolutely uncontrollable beast, and his tearing into Miz accomplished both cementing Lesnar’s status as a badass and made Miz look sympathetic.
Paul Heyman continues to do wonders in his role. It is such a rare and unique thing for the manager of a monster to come across as being unable to manage. Heyman isn’t the one in control in the Lesnar/Heyman dichotomy, and that alone helps put over Lesnar as a forced to be reckoned with.
Monday was unfortunate for The Shield. They played their part well and showed a bit of ass against three of WWE’s top babyfaces, but that moment was built around Brad Maddox, a guy the WWE audience has been given absolutely no reason to want to see protected.
Still, I enjoy the fact that The Shield is continuing to be booked the way they are. They’re at the top of the card, and they consistently look like they belong in that position. All too often WWE will launch a heel into the main event, but they refuse to give them the credibility to make fans feel like they will maintain that positioning for any length of time. One can only hope WWE learned from the way they booked the Nexus and do not make the same mistakes in the coming months with The Shield.
Initially, I was a bit worried to see the live crowd react so poorly to the segment when Cena, Sheamus, and Ryback made their entrances, but upon reflection I feel a lot of that has to do with John Cena. While he’s addressing the Shield and promising to take the fight to them, everyone knows he is bound to The Rock and Punk, so his participation in the Shield storyline feels rather quaint.
Monday’s show was better than it has been in the previous weeks. It wasn’t too full of camp and it provided plenty of in ring action and story advancement. It still suffered from the 3 hour grind, but that’s come to be expected.
If you have any questions or comments or just wish to chat with a fellow wrestling fan about whatever, then feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow me on Twitter.
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