Well, like all long due bills we’ve ignored this one and ignored it, pretending it’ll go away, but like all bills eventually this one comes due. Michael Troll opens up this week’s Raw with his much threaten…err…hyped Michael Cole Challenge.
J.R. comes to the ring, no doubt bracing for whatever surprise new humiliations Vince and co. have decided to put him through this week. Troll has set up 3 challenges for J.R. Mercifully none of them involve wrestling. Unmercifully all three of them are actually, y’know, things, things that exist that we’re all going to have to sit here and watch.
WWE Monday Night Raw airs in Monroe, La. every Monday at 9/8c on USA.
For Monroe residents USA is channel 242 on Direct TV, channel 105 for DISH Network and channel 26 for Comcast cable subscribers. Contact your local cable provider for more info.
First up is an arm wrestling contest and i’ve got two f—s in my pocket that I’ve been saving for the occasion. Just so I could NOT give either of them. What is this about again? Is it a result of the GDYC committee and their abiding hatred for all things Troll?
If so and this whole thing is leading up to his dismissal, just get rid of the guy and be done with it. You don’t devote special features to guys on the chopping block, you just… chop them. If it’s not leading to that then it’s only giving Troll-haters more fuel for their flame, in effect wrong-headedly goading fans of your show. The rest of us who just want to see wrestling could care less so what’s the point?
For my part I don’t dislike the guy. He does tend to prattle on too much and make every segment about him instead of the action inside the ring. But when he actually does call the match it’s serviceable. The announcers aren’t supposed to be the focus of this anyway so I don’t get too worked up about it. If he can just get out of his own way and call the matches everything else would work itself out.
J.R. wins the first challenge. Dance contest next. Well of course it is. I think I covered last 3 hour super show how much WWE creative love seeing Michael Cole and Vickie Guerrero dance. I don’t think I have to mention how much no one else does.
“And I was happy watching my SpongeBob.” my girlfriend sighs, watching Cole awkwardly flail about.
Yeah, tell me about it. I’d rather be watching SpongeBob too.
That is until J.R.’s turn comes up and I see him busting a move to some song called “Sweep the Floor with it”, I think. I’d almost say this one part makes all the rest of the awfulness we’ve had to suffer through worth it.
Because at the end of the day it’s still more dancing contests when there are stars desperately in need of more exposure just wasting away riding the bench. And yeah the J.R. thing is good for a laugh but this is well worn ground. Oh haha, look someone you wouldn’t expect to dance very well isn’t dancing very well, but since you rarely ever see them dance at all it’s still kinda funny right? Right? Right?!!
Uhh… yeah, good luck with that.
Next is a weigh off, a very simple challenge of who weighs the least. Troll weighs in at 200 lbs. and J.R. comes in at about 239 or so. I was expecting J.R. to weigh a bit more than that. Umm, I don’t know if Cole the Troll can even keep up his incessant fat jokes if he’s only just under 40 pounds lighter than Oklahoma himself. Talk about being skinny-fat.
Oh wait, it occurred to me that in all this I still haven’t mentioned what the stipulations are for the challenge. I’m so accustomed to WWE allowing awful things to exist simply for their own sakes so it honestly never occurred to me. The stipulation is this: If J.R. wins all 3 challenges he gets his job back as Raw announcer and Troll will quit. So given that he didn’t win the last challenge Michael Cole keeps his job.
Enter CM Punk. As the officially designated speaker-of-truth in the WWE Punk anoints himself as the person who has to come down and call this crap sandwich for what it is. Punk vows that during his reign as WWE champion after Survivor Series he’ll make it his personal mission to see that terrible segments like this one don’t get airtime.
“I know you probably think that all of this has nothing to do with me but it really does. Once it became painfully obvious—keyword painfully obvious—that you weren’t going to give J.R. a legitimate shot at getting his job back this whole thing became a colossal waste of time. A whole giant colossal waste of time except for J.R. dancing. That… was awesome… Tonight’s three hours, it’s a three hour show and it already feels like you’ve been out here for six.”
Punk basically encapsulates every problem I’ve ever had with these cutesy little gimmicky interludes. At the end of the day they really add little to nothing to the show while serving the dual purpose of subtracting time that could be much better spent building up deserving up and comers.
John Laurinaitis comes out and tells Punk that before he goes to Survivor Series he has a big tag match scheduled for tonight: with tag team partner, the Big Show he is set to take on WWE Champ Alberto Del Rio and World Champion Mark Henry. “Looks like the pipe bomb blew up in your face, didn’t it Punk?” Cole quips. Not content to leave it at that he gets in Punk’s face and demands an apology.
Punk headbutts Troll, puts him in this crazy new Anaconda Vice lock of his while shouting, “I’m sorry.” Punk, I don’t think it works if you’re trying to rip a man’s arm out of his socket while you’re saying it.
Backstage Mick Foley is in the house. And he looks 10-15 years younger too. Skin’s clear, hair’s dark and full. Is he wearing make-up or has he just been living a lot better since he put down the tights for the last time? Whatever it is Foley looks good tonight. Pause. Healthy I mean. I mean healthy, not…
*Ahem* Nevermind. Anyway, he says he wouldn’t have missed Rock’s return for anything. So the Rock and Sock Connection are both back in the house. Now this, this just feels right.
Continue reading to hear about Mick Foley’s big surprise for John Cena.
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